Post image for Mission Valley Watch

Somebody needs to be watching Mission Valley – the long congested corridor that is literally the heart of San Diego. And certainly, it’s not the City of San Diego that is watching Mission Valley – or rather watching out for it. And certainly, it’s not the major mainstream media in this town either that are watching Mission Valley – with one HUGE exception: the nearly-exclusive and obsessive focus on the Qualcomm Stadium site.

Yet Mission Valley certainly does need to be watched because the construction projects that are being built and are in the pipeline to being built in the next few years will quite double – or even triple – the current population of the Valley of 20,000 San Diegans. The projects will double the number of housing units that are already there.

The problem with this is that there isn’t even the public infrastructure now that is required to serve the thousands of current Mission Valley residents, much less the needs of (and this is a conservative estimate) a future populace that has undergone growth of one hundred percent. The projects planned and even approved will further destroy what remains of the once, lush green valley that in earlier days, held the promise of becoming the Central Park or the Golden Gate Park of San Diego.

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Post image for Flipping Apartments and Making Millions Off Ocean Beach

Somebody’s got to do it, right? Somebody’s got to come in to OB and flip some apartments and make some millions. Right?

That’s exactly what the owners of the 22-unit apartment complex at 5041-43 Santa Monica Avenue believe. They came in about 2 years ago, bought them for $4.75 million, did some improvements ( a lot they claim) and have now turned around and are trying to sell the place for $7.6 million.

That’s almost $3 million. In 2 years – not bad. Of course, they spent a bunch in the improvements. We reported on the original sale back in September 2013. Here’s what we said then:…

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Post image for Earth Day in OB at the Town Council Meeting – April 22

At this month’s meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council, the Council is celebrating “Earth Day in OB” with guest environmental advocates. They include:

  • Robert Anthony/ David Adkins with the City of San Diego Public Utilities Dept. who give a Presentation on Water Conservation and Drought Response
  • Roger Kube from Surfrider Foundation has a Presentation on Plastic Bag Band, Restaurants Champagne and Water Conservation.

The meeting is Wednesday, April 22nd, and is held at the Masonic Center at1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd. It starts at 7 pm.

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U-T SD Drought 4-19-15In a huge spread in it’s “SD In Depth” section of the Sunday paper on April 19th, the U-T San Diego announced its “Five Ways to Conquer Drought” in large headlines. This drought relief was accompanied by shorter op-ed pieces and a decent map of “Our Water Infrastructure”.

Yet, after a perusal of all 4 newspaper-sized pages devoted to the drought and water, there was not one word about “fracking” – not one word – in fact, neither “fracking” nor big oil were even mentioned in any of the articles. The U-T has ignored the threats posed by fracking and is trying to turn us away from this horrible destruction, a threat posed …


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Post image for Gov. Brown with his water hogging buddies – Mr. Big Oil and Mr. Agro Business.

Junco’s Jabs by Junco Canche

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Taxes and Inequality in California: Who Pays a Bigger Share?

April 20, 2015 by Jim Miller

cal tax formBy Jim Miller

Last week was Tax Day and with it came the annual ritual of bemoaning our ever-rising taxes and complaining about the endless growth of big government.

Indeed just a few days after Tax Day, I gave a talk at a local college on the history of income inequality and workers’ struggles in which I made a comparison between the stark odds workers face today in the Fight for $15 with the similarly steep hill they faced 100 years ago before the rise of the American Labor Movement and the reforms that came with the New Deal.

As is usually the case, however, a few folks in the audience just could not get their heads around the idea that it was not all government’s fault.

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Head-On Wrong-Way Crash at Ocean Beach Entrance Leaves 2 Dead and 2 Injured

April 20, 2015 by Staff

A tragic wrong-way crash at the entrance to Ocean Beach took 2 lives and injured 2 more early Sunday morning, April 19th.

It appears from news accounts that a VW sedan took a wrong-way turn down 8 West – going east- right – before 1 a.m. The VW – driven by a 22-year old – crashed head-on into a Honda Accord with 3 people in it.

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California water restrictions must include Nestlé, Big Ag and Big Oil!

April 20, 2015 by Source

by Dan Bacher

CA orders water restrictions

The mainstream media, state officials and corporate “environmental” groups have for years tried to portray California as the “green” leader of the nation.

In reality, California suffers from some of the greatest environmental degradation of any state in the nation, since corporate agribusiness, the oil industry and other big money interests control the majority of the state’s politicians and exert inordinate influence over the state’s environmental policies.

California is currently in a state of emergency, with NASA scientists saying that California has only about one year of water left in reserves, according to Food and Water Watch. This is largely due to the gross mismanagement of California’s reservoirs, rivers and groundwater supplies, during a record drought, to serve the 1 percent.

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What’s Going On With “Tiny’s Tavern” in Ocean Beach?

April 17, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Customers and passersby are beginning to notice. “Tiny’s Tavern” – a venerable watering hole and small grill on Voltaire Street in Ocean Beach – is closed and its doors are locked. What’s going on?

As close observers of the local scene as well as our readers may recall, Tiny of Tiny’s Tavern had an agreement with People’s Food Co-op Market.

The property on which his business rested was sold to People’s and Tiny had an agreement with them to continue to operate his tavern for one year – then he was going to retire to Hawaii with his proceeds. And the market was going to use the property as part of their expansion.

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Eduardo Galeano, Sacrilegious Women

April 17, 2015 by Source

Editor Note: Acclaimed author and champion of social justice Eduardo Galeano died on April 13, 2015. Democracy Now! provides a tribute here.


south americaHis book Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent came out in 1971 and proved to be the first vampire thriller of our American imperial age. Its blood-sucker of a plot was too outrageous not to be mesmerizing: a country called the United States declares a “good neighbor” policy for those living in its hemisphere because they just look so tasty, and then proceeds to suck the economic blood out of country after country.

Hollywood never topped it. “True Blood” and “The Vampire Diaries” couldn’t hold an incisor to it; Buffy was a punk by comparison.

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Super Sized #Fightfor15 Protests, Value Meal Press Coverage

April 16, 2015 by Doug Porter

ff9By Doug Porter

I spent most of yesterday traveling around San Diego with roughly three dozen fast food workers. The local version of the nationwide Fight for 15 movement made a statement at ten locations around town, taking to the streets both in North Park and downtown.

The mostly brown and black workers on the bus were those who’d committed to taking a day off from work (there were others that came and went) to let the world know they wanted a better life. Two were older, having spent more than two decades in the business. Some had families to support. Some brought their kids along. Others were trying to go to community college on a fast food paycheck. All of them believed they could make a difference, even if they were just paying it forward.

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10,000 Square Feet of Ocean Beach – Half Block From Beach – Sold for $1.32 Million

April 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Big Question: Will New Owners Keep 97-Year-Old Cottages or Is Another Huge Condo Complex Coming In?

9 Units and Empty Lot on 5100 Block of Muir Sold

A 3-lot piece of Ocean Beach – totaling nearly 10,000 square feet – a half block from the beach on the 5100 block of Muir – has just been sold for $1,325,000.

The 3 lots on the last block of Muir Avenue, 5137, 5141 and 5153 – an empty lot – include 7 buildings, occupying a total of 9,943 square feet (448-043-21, 22 and 23). Overall, the property consists of 8 one-bedroom units plus one studio:

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St Peter’s by the Sea in South OB Throws “Open House” Party – April 18

April 16, 2015 by Source
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“All are welcome”

St. Peter’s by the Sea
1371 Sunset Cliffs Blvd

Saturday, April 18, 1:00 – 4:00 PM

By Lois Lane

The construction that has fascinated and puzzled passers-by to St. Peter’s by the Sea Lutheran Church has come to an end. The church is inviting the community to see the spectacular update at an Open House on Saturday, April 18, 1:00 – 4:00 PM.

For everyone who watches the construction going on and never sees the final product, this is chance to view a meaningful change to a site that effectively combines old and new.

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Legal Complaint Filed against Civic San Diego in Superior Court

April 16, 2015 by Source

Plaintiffs seek community benefits and oversight of public funds

accountabilityEditor: Yesterday, April 15, our online partner, the San Diego Free Press, published a copy of the news release on the legal complaint just recently filed against Civic San Diego in Superior Court by the San Diego County Building and Construction Trades Council and Dr. Murtaza Baxamusa, a CivicSD Boardmember. We are – as SDFP did – providing their news release and a link to the complete filing below without analysis at this time.

SAN DIEGO, CA – A legal complaint was filed April 10th in the San Diego Superior Court against Civic San Diego (CivicSD) and the City of San Diego

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The History of Famosa Slough – Thursday, April 16th

April 15, 2015 by Source

Famosa SloughHistorical Society Presents Jim Peugh

Come one, come all – out to the next OB Historical Society presentation – this one on the history of Famosa Slough – the body of water just next to northeast Ocean Beach along the San Diego River.

Jim Peugh – chair of the board of directors of the Friends of Famosa Slough – will be giving the presentation about its history. It was once an ice age coastal canyon, and it once was on the City’s chopping block to be sold off to developers.

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Newport News and Other Things of Ocean Beach

April 15, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Newport News and Other Things of Ocean Beach

Occasionally our wandering reporter jots down what’s new – or not new – on Newport Avenue – the commercial center of Ocean Beach. Here’s what we found on a quiet Tuesday, the 14th of April.

BBQ House to Open Expansion by July 4th

The owners and staff at OB’s famous BBQ House are set to open their expansion by July 4th.

A Plea to Not Give Money to the “Homeless by Choice”

Pasted on the glass windows of a number of businesses along Newport, was a flier pleading for people to not give any money to “travelers”

Merchants Ready to Hire – Signs of Good Times

There were two storefronts advertising that they need help and want to hire. One was at “miss match” and the other at Margarita’s.

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Going All in for $15 Today! All Day Coverage by San Diego Free Press

April 15, 2015 by Staff

good jobs fair wagesSan Diego Free Press editor Doug Porter – from the OB Rag’s online media partner – will be spending the day at the locations listed below.

Doug will be tweeting throughout the day, so check our twitter feed at the San Diego Free Press.

Here’s the list of times and locations for protests on Wednesday:

7 am – Fast Food Worker Strike: 2345 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA
8:30 am – Fast Food Worker Strike: 2829 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA
11 am – Security Officer Event:750 B Street San Diego, CA
Noon – State Workers Event: 1350 Front St, San Diego, CA

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Buy Now Pay Later: How San Diego School Districts Were Hoodwinked by Wall Street

April 15, 2015 by John Lawrence

cab-picBy John Lawrence

In 2009 then Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law AB 1388 which eliminated prudent controls over how much debt school districts could enter into. Wall Street bankers then swarmed all over the state promoting Capital Appreciation Bonds (CABs), the equivalent of payday loans for school districts.

One fantastic advantage of these loans was the “buy now, pay later” aspect. School districts could get their money now and not have to raise taxes on current residents. Easy money. There would not have to be any payments made for 20 years. Current residents would be off the hook. But their children and grandchildren would enter an era of crushing debt when the bill became due.

And Wall Street is patient, very patient.

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There’s Too Many Stabbings in Ocean Beach of Late

April 14, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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4 People Stabbed in 3 Weeks

By our count, there has been at least three stabbing incidents of late in Ocean Beach – and that’s three too many! 3 incidents in which at least 4 people were stabbed.

No. 1: There was the stabbing as a result of a fight between some homeless people late Saturday, March 22nd. The fight had taken place it appears in Saratoga Park. The suspect was arrested, according to Community Relations Officer David Surwilo, and the victim was fined.

No. 2: A second stabbing took place also recently

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Restaurant Review: Portuguese Market and Cafe in Point Loma

April 14, 2015 by Judi Curry
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By Judi Curry

Portuguese Market and Cafe

2818 Avenida de Portugal
San Diego, CA 92106

I received a call telling me about a place that was so good that I needed to try it. Well, Barbara, I agree. The meal was delightful. The restaurant is on the backside of the Portuguese Hall. I have been to many “fiestas” held there and had no idea that there was also a restaurant. I found out that it has only been opened since July, 2014,

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Let’s Make History: Going All in for $15 on April 15th

April 14, 2015 by Doug Porter

SD Fight for 15By Doug Porter

On Wednesday, April 15th, while much of the traditional news media is camped outside post offices trying to interview the vanishing breed of Luddites using snail mail to file their taxes, these modern-day fighters for fair wages will be protesting in over 200 cities nationwide.

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Conversations at the Catfish Club: “The Answer is Love”

April 14, 2015 by Ernie McCray

The Answer is LoveBy Ernie McCray

I sat at a Catfish Club luncheon the other day listening to Leon Williams and Reverend George Walker Smith converse about days of yore and their thoughts about today’s world.

Leon was the first black to hold a seat with the San Diego City Council and the San Diego County Board of Supervisors.

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An Inconvenient Companion: For Mary Kowit

April 14, 2015 by Source


Editor: Well-known local poet and former OBcean, Steve Kowit passed recently.

By Jim Moreno

Grief is an inconvenient companion,
In the grocery store line, in the middle of a sentence,
Hanging clothes on the line, it doesn’t care,

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Police Watch Commander’s Log on Saturday Night Stabbing in OB

April 13, 2015 by Source

Here, thanks to Celeste McClure is the Watch Commander’s Log for Sunday April 12th, 2015, with regards to the stabbing on the end of Newport late Saturday night.

:: 01:53 a.m. PDT

Advisory Watch Commander Log

Incident# 20066
Begin Date/Time: 04/11/2015 11:16 PM
End Date/Time:
Beat: 614

Location: 5000 Newport Ave

Neighborhood: Ocean Beach

Inc Type: Stabbing

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The Volunteers of the San Salvador

April 13, 2015 by Judi Curry
Thumbnail image for The Volunteers of the San Salvador

Editor: The launch of the San Salvador, the replica of Cabrillo’s ship being built alongside Point Loma, – originally scheduled for mid-April – as been postponed. Here, our Judi Curry continues her focus on the many volunteers who helped to build the ship. Cabrillo himself and what he and the Missionaries wrought here in San Diego is still controversial and the subject of a debate on our website.

By Judi Curry

Last year I did a story of the women volunteers working on the San Salvador. If you are not familiar with the San Salvador, it was the flagship of explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo in 1542 when he sailed into San Diego Bay. Cabrillo, who sailed from Portugal, was the first European to explore San Diego Bay and the coast of California.

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Civic San Diego – ‘like a hole in the head’

April 13, 2015 by Source
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By Norma Damashek

We need it like a loch im kopf. A hole in the head. It’s what people in the old days would say about a bad situation. It’s what I say about Civic San Diego –the reincarnation of our former downtown redevelopment agency.

We need Civic San Diego like a hole in the head. It’s time to get rid of it.

A quick backtrack: It’s been three years since redevelopment agencies throughout California were terminated and instructed to wind down their uncompleted redevelopment projects and make good on their financial obligations. Other cities complied by doing the job in-house, under public supervision.

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OB Planners’ Project Review Committee: Del Mar Demolition and Condo Again Up for Review

April 13, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for OB Planners’ Project Review Committee: Del Mar Demolition and Condo Again Up for Review

The Project Review Committee of the OB Planning Board meets this Wednesday, April 15th. The Review committee is a sub-committee of the full Board and does an initial review of all projects before they go before the Board. The committee meets at 6pm at the OB Rec Center, 4726 Santa Monica Avenue.

It’s one main agenda item is to review an application for Coastal Development Permit for a demolition and construction project on the 4900 block of Del Mar Avenue. The project at 4939 – 4941 Del Mar Avenue would demolish 3 existing structures and replace them with a 3-unit residential condominium with subterranean garage.

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Teachers and Students Fight for 15

April 13, 2015 by Jim Miller

faculty forward

By Jim Miller

I have noted in this column that, “most colleges in America run on the backs of adjunct instructors who don’t receive the same pay for the same work as do the shrinking pool of full-time faculty” and that the “Exploitation of contingent labor is not just a problem for employees at Starbucks, Walmart, and fast food chains where workers are fighting for $15 an hour; it is an epidemic in the academy as well.”

Fight for 15 organizers will be at 4 PM at Scripps Cottage on San Diego State University’s campus, we will stand with them as teachers and students from across the city will come together with workers, community activists, people of faith, and others to call for basic fairness and economic justice for all working people.

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Lawsuits Filed Against San Diego and One Paseo Project Developer

April 9, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Suits Contend Project’s Environmental Impact Report Flawed

Two lawsuits were filed on April 8th in efforts to halt the controversial One Paseo Project. In the first, three community groups sued the City of San Diego over the flawed environmental impact report (EIR).

The second suit was filed by the owner of Del Mar Highlands Town Center against the City and Kilroy Realty Corporation, the project’s developer. It also challenges the validity of the EIR prepared for the development. Both suits contend that the vote of approval of the project was based on an EIR that was not adequate.

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The Best Front Yard Fence in Ocean Beach

April 9, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for The Best Front Yard Fence in Ocean Beach

This has gotta be the best front yard fence in all of OB. Take a gander of what the residents of this Pescadero Street house did with their fence.

This is in the vicinity of the 4800 block.

So, are you bored with your front yard fence?

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