Post image for Torrey Pine on West Point Loma Coming Down

A Torrey Pine on private property at 5035 West Point Loma Blvd is coming down today – Wed., July 9th.

Even though Torrey Pines are a protected species, the San Diego Municipal Code does not protect them if they are on private property. Public property is another matter, as it is illegal to cut them down. Here’s what the SD Muni Code say:

§63.07 Destruction, Injury of Torrey Pines Trees — Prohibited

That it shall be unlawful for any person or persons to cut, injure or destroy any trees known as the “Pinus Torreyana” growing upon Pueblo Lots Nos. 1332, 1337 and 1338 or any other public lots or lands, belonging to and within the corporate limits of the City of San Diego.

Of course, OBceans have been planting and saving Torrey Pines for a century.

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Three MonkeysBy Doug Porter

San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis appeared on KUSI-TV’s morning talk show today to release a copy of her letter of recommendation written for the son of indicted Mexican financier Susumo Azano.

A consortium of media organizations including City News Service, inewsource, KFMB News 8, KNSD/NBC 7, KPBS, KSWB/Fox 5, the San Diego Daily Transcript, San Diego Press Club, Society of Professional Journalists San Diego, U-T San Diego, and Voice of San Diego had made repeated requests for a copy of the document.

At 5pm yesterday a deadline passed for what was essentially a demand letter (the last thing you do before you sue somebody) written by attorney Guylyn Cummins on behalf of the media organizations.

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Here is the video of the July 6 shark attack up at Manhattan Beach.

The following is a summary from post by Jim Hoft / Gateway Pundit / July 7, 2014

A 10 foot long great white shark, hooked by a fisherman and fighting for its life, took a bite on a distance swimmer in the waters off the Manhattan Beach Pier today.

The men in the video on the Manhattan Beach Pier were fishing. Some allege that they were illegally fishing for shark and threw bloody chum in the water knowing it would attract sharks.

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Post image for Tell SeaWorld: Stop the Nightly Fireworks

Sign the Online Petition

There’s now an online petition to get SeaWorld to put a halt to their nightly fireworks explosions. As of Wednesday morning (July 9), it had 1,754 signatures.

Here is what the website states:

STOP the Nightly Fireworks at SeaWorld

SeaWorld is damaging the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of San Diegans on a nightly basis, 90 days straight during the summer season alone. They are causing hearing damage and overall the physical well-being of the citizens of San Diego who live within a 20 mile radius or larger.

The fireworks at SeaWorld constitute animal cruelty. Dogs, cats, and other companion animals don’t understand that the terrifying loud bangs are a celebration.

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By Norma Damashek / NumbersRunner

cursusThere are certain bare facts about our city that we ­– as informed San Diegans and curious citizens – would benefit from knowing more about.

The intent of my upcoming commentaries is to shed light on the anatomy of hometown government while getting the bare facts out in the open.

Having just weathered the July 4th weekend, why don’t we start with some bare facts about flashy celebrations, San Diego style.

You’re probably aware that the job of drumming up money and excellent ideas for a centennial celebration of the 1915 Balboa Park Panama-California exposition (Panama refers to the canal, not the hat or cigar) …

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Minimum Wage Increase, Earned Sick Days Proposal Set for Full City Council Hearing July 14th

July 9, 2014 by Doug Porter
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By Doug Porter

The full San Diego City Council is set to hear arguments over proposals increasing the minimum wage and allowing for up to five earned sick days. The measure being considered is Council President Todd Gloria’s attempt at comprise from an earlier proposal.

The specifics of the current plan are:

  • $9.75 Jan 2015
  • $10.50 Jan 2016
  • $11.50 Jan 2017
  • Indexed to inflation after Jan 2019
  • 5 Earned Sick days
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News From Around the Surf and Sand of Ocean Beach

July 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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* No Injuries a Miracle as SUV Plows into OB Episcopal Church

A Honda Pilot SUV plowed into OB’s Episcopal Diocese

* No Arrests at July 4th BBQ for Homeless

There were no arrests of anyone at the July 4th BBQ for homeless people in Saratoga Park.

* Volunteers Needed at Farmers Market to Circulate OB Plan Petition

Volunteers are needed as OB organizers gear up for the final showdown at the City Council. They’re needed to help circulate the Petition in support of the OB Community Plan.

* Councilman Ed Harris to Hold Forum on Homelessness – Thursday July 10

Councilman Harris will host a forum at the Point Loma library Thursday evening – July 10 – at seven

… AND MORE – COME INSIDE ….

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San Diego Media Discovering the Battle Over OB’s Community Plan

July 8, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

Local Press Playing Catch-Up

Finally, some of San Diego’s mainstream media have discovered the battle over the Ocean Beach Community Plan. The U-T San Diego ran two versions basically of the same article by reported David Garrick on June 28 and 29, quoting Pete Ruscitti, the OB planning chair, and Gretchen Newsom, the head of the OB Town Council. Here is the lede:

O.B. RESIDENTS FIGHT SOFTER BUILDING RULES

OCEAN BEACH — Worried that a new community plan for Ocean Beach could destroy the area’s small-scale charm, more than 2,000 residents have signed petitions this month asking the city to maintain building restrictions that date back four decades.

The residents say loosening the rules would transform their community into Mission Beach or Pacific Beach, where three-story vacation rentals have replaced small cottages and other less intense housing in many areas.

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America Has a Koch Problem

July 8, 2014 by Judi Curry

Move-on sponsored movie “Koch Brothers Exposed: 2014 Edition” shown in households all over the nation.

By Judi Curry

Bill from the Swamp CrittersSenator Bernie Sanders sent out an email telling Move-on members that “ . . . our great nation must not be hijacked by right-wing billionaires like Charles and David Koch. For the sake of our children and our grandchildren, we must fight back, and we must do it now in advance of November’s elections.”

I had heard of the Koch brothers for months; I was somewhat aware of the dastardly deeds they were doing throughout our country, and decided to attend the showing of this documentary at “The Hippie House” recently with approximately twenty of our Pt. Loma/Ocean Beach neighbors.

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Our Children: Thoughts from Murrieta

July 7, 2014 by Source

They are now our children. Photo by Rick Najera.

They ask again what side I’m on. I think and answer, “I’m on the children’s side.”

By Rick Najera / Latino Rebels

I’m in Murrieta, California, ground zero in the immigration debate. I’m watching hundreds of protestors and supporters at a hastily called town hall meeting at the local high school.

Police surround the auditorium to shield between protestors and supporters. A massive wall of news vans fill the parking lot. Reporters with news cameras troll the crowd hunting for sound bites. On both sides, people fly American flags. …

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Surfrider: Significant Decrease in Trash on Beach After July 4th – Partly Due to Curtailed Marshmallow War in OB

July 7, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

The San Diego Surfrider, other environmental groups and all the volunteers who massed the day after July 4th to do the beach clean-up found a huge drop in the trash on the beach. A spokesperson stated that there was a “significant decrease in the amount of trash collected this year compared to the last few years.”

The group attributed part of the this to the curtailment of this year’s OB Marshmallow War.

In a press release from Surfrider San Diego, they announced that nearly 650 people gathered at 4 beach sites on July 5th as volunteers for the massive annual clean-up effort, led by Surfrider. By midday, they reported that a total of 1,410 pounds of trash and 326 pounds of recycling had been collected.

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The City “Dudette” meets the Real Cowboy!

July 7, 2014 by Judi Curry

Cowboy.

By Judi Curry

Weeks ago I said that I was going to stop my on-line dating sites. To a certain degree that was true; those sites that cost money I have now eliminated; those that are free I have kept. About 3-4 months ago I began corresponding with “Cowboy.” When he told me he lived in North Dakota – near Fargo – no less – I knew that there was no purpose in continuing our relationship, but it just seemed to continue, sometimes talking or texting 20-30 times a day.

After only a short period of time – maybe 3 weeks, he told me that we had texted over 2000 times! What in the world did we talk about? I don’t know, really, but our conversations went on and on, and pretty soon we were talking on the phone. For an honest-to-goodness cowboy I was impressed with his knowledge and truly enjoyed our conversations.

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What the Supreme Court’s Harris v. Quinn Decision Means for Workers and American Democracy

July 7, 2014 by Jim Miller

David Sachs/SEIU via Equal Times

By Jim Miller

After last week’s slew of bad Supreme Court rulings much of the media attention rightfully went to the horrendous “Hobby Lobby” case where the rights of corporations were deemed more important than the rights of women.

But there was another big decision where the Supreme Court surprised some observers and ruled narrowly on Harris v. Quinn, the case which could have gutted public sector unions and virtually wiped out their ability to play in American politics by ending all public sector unions’ ability to collect agency fees. As the Daily Kos noted of the case:

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OB Marshmallow War 2014 – a Shadow of Its Former Self

July 5, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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The Marshmallow War in Ocean Beach last night, July 4th, was less than a third of what it was in 2013. Way less marshmallows were thrown, the throwing did not get out of hand, and by 9:30 it was over and there was hardly a marshmallow in the streets down around Newport and Abbott.

Compared to last year, there were no marshmallows thrown before the fireworks, none thrown during the fireworks, and after the explosions and light show, it took a few moments before the first white globs were seen in the air.

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San Diegans Urged to Respond with Compassion to Humanitarian Crisis at the Border

July 3, 2014 by Source
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We are not only facing a humanitarian crisis, but a crisis of values as well

By San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium

The leadership of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium (SDIRC), a coalition of nearly 20 community, faith, labor, and legal organizations released the following statement in response the current humanitarian crisis migrant families are facing in Southern California.

sdirclogoAlor Calderon, Chair of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium and Program Director at the Employee Rights Center:

The issue of unaccompanied minors fleeing their home countries is a humanitarian crisis, not an immigration crisis, and should be treated as such.

Furthermore, we are not only facing a humanitarian crisis but a crisis of values as well.

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OB Rag Looking for July 4th Monitors and OBservers

July 3, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for OB Rag Looking for July 4th Monitors  and OBservers

Will the Marshmallow Ban Hold? Will Homeless Advocates Be Arrested?

Your online, local website is looking for a few good observers who have cameras for July 4th. That’s right, the OB Rag wants to sign up a handful of volunteers who will assist us in monitoring what happens in Ocean Beach on Friday, July 4th.

There’s a bunch of stuff to observe – and we’re not talking about the surf or the fireworks.

First, if homeless advocates go ahead as planned and feed homeless people in Saratoga Park at the beach, they may be arrested. The group that does feed homeless on major holidays say they have threatened with being arrested if they proceed with their plans. They’ll be doing this from 11 am to 2 pm.

So, we need observers with cameras and monitors for that potential scene.

And second, of course, is what happens down on the beach at night after the fireworks.

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Group Threatened With Arrest If They Feed Homeless at Saratoga Park on July 4th

July 3, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Group Threatened With Arrest If They Feed Homeless at Saratoga Park on July 4th

UPDATE: No arrests made as volunteers served dozens of homeless and other needy people this morning at Saratoga Park in OB.

A group that feeds homeless people on every holiday at an Ocean Beach park has been threatened with arrest by police if they go ahead feed the homeless on July 4th.

The group – Second Chances – is a non-profit that works with local churches and homeless advocates. They feed homeless people in OB every Saturday at the Episcopal Church on Sunset Cliffs and Brighton. And on major holidays the also feed homeless folks at Saratoga Park down at the beach. The last holiday they did this was on Memorial Day this year – without hassles.

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Is Park and Rec About to Remove 2 North OB Park Picnic Tables Due to Complaints From OB’s Gentry?

July 3, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
Thumbnail image for Is Park and Rec About to Remove 2 North OB Park Picnic Tables Due to Complaints From OB’s Gentry?

UPDATE: It has been confirmed to the OB Rag by a Park and Rec manager that these two picnic tables will be moved. Dan Danerio said that these two tables have not always been where they are now, that his department had a couple extra ones and decided to place them in the grassy area as an experiment. It didn’t work out due to complaints from local homeowners, including some of the new owners of the large mansions close to the tables. …. More inside

Why? Why would Park and Rec remove two picnic tables?

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Break-down of Coastal Commission Recommendations to OB Plan

July 2, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Last Friday, June 27th, staff of the California Coastal Commission submitted 43 recommendations involving the Ocean Beach Community Plan to the City for its considerations. This 11th-hour submittal of modifications has now delayed the review and potential approval of OB’s Plan by the City Council. This past Monday, the Council moved their hearing to July 29th.

The Council felt that City staff, both from the planning department and the City Attorney’s Office, needed to review and respond to the recommendations.

If staff found a recommendation that is “material” – that is a substantial change – to the Plan, then the potential exists for even more delays, as the Plan then would have to go back before the Planning Commission.

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Ugly Americans Block Migrant Buses in Murrieta on Eve of 50th Anniversary of Civil Rights Act

July 2, 2014 by Doug Porter
Thumbnail image for Ugly Americans Block Migrant Buses in Murrieta on Eve of 50th Anniversary of Civil Rights Act

Editor: On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the historic Civil Rights Act, ugly Americans showed the world just how far this nation still needs to go up in Murrietta in Riverside County, yesterday, July 1.

By Doug Porter

A group of right-wing demonstrators took to the streets on Tuesday, July 1, turning away three Border Patrol buses bringing 136 Central American migrant children and families to a Murrieta, California processing center.

So much for the inscription on the Statue of Liberty, which begins:

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free;
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,
Send these, the homeless,
Tempest-tossed to me
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

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Facebook Conducted Psych Experiments on 700,000 Un-Witting Users

July 2, 2014 by Source
Thumbnail image for Facebook Conducted Psych Experiments on 700,000 Un-Witting Users

Subjects Had Their Feeds Altered to Gauge Effect on Emotion in 2012

By Reed Albergotti / The Wall Street Journal / June 30, 2014

A furor has erupted over news that Facebook, in 2012, conducted a psychological experiment on nearly 700,000 unwitting users. WSJ’s Facebook reporter Reed Albergotti discusses the fallout on Lunch Break with Tanya Rivero. Photo: Getty

A social-network furor has erupted over news that Facebook Inc., in 2012, conducted a massive psychological experiment on nearly 700,000 unwitting users.

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To Hell with Hobby Lobby

July 2, 2014 by Source

By Lauree Benton

womanseye44“Corporations are people, my friend.”

Women? Well… the jury is still out on that. Whether you are a person or not may depend on the religious views of your boss.

Makes sense I guess. The Constitution does say that all men are created equal.

I’m sure the ALL MALE majority who made this stirring decision is just looking out for us lady types. You know, we can’t be trusted.

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OB Planning Board Agenda for Wed., July 2nd

July 2, 2014 by Staff
Thumbnail image for OB Planning Board Agenda for Wed., July 2nd

Here inside is the agenda for the OB Planning Board monthly meeting, Wednesday, July 2, 2014. The Board meets promptly at 6pm at the OB Recreation Center, 4726 Santa Monica Avenue.

On top of the agenda is an important update from the OB planners heading up the Community Plan Update. Lots going on involving the process of being approved by the City Council. Just this week, the Council postponed their hearing on the Plan to July 29.

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LA Times Discovers OB’s Marshmallow Controversy

July 1, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Editor: Tony Perry, friend and San Diego stringer for the LA Times posted his take on OB’s marshmallow controversy. The Times also posted an OB Rag photo by Joe Ewing, and quoted the OB Rag in a statement no one here on staff recalls making, anywhere in the numerous articles the Rag has published about the marshmallows.

S.D.’s Ocean Beach weary of annual July 4 marshmallow fight’s mess

By Tony Perry
Since the mid-1980s, residents of the Ocean Beach community of San Diego have enjoyed a unique Fourth of July free-for-all: a marshmallow fight after the evening display of fireworks. But the sticky, gooey mess left behind in recent years has increased calls to abandon the tradition.

In that time, the spontaneous, leaderless event has gotten more aggressive, spreading from the beach to the main business street of Newport Avenue and then to surrounding streets. The mess left by countless marshmallows has been unsightly and substantial.

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“Mallow out!” Says the OB Town Council – No More Marshmallow War

July 1, 2014 by Matthew Wood
Thumbnail image for “Mallow out!” Says the OB Town Council – No More Marshmallow War

By Matthew Wood

If the Town Council has its way, Ocean Beach will be a marshmallow-free zone this Fourth of July.

Town Council President Gretchen Newsom hammered home that point Tuesday morning during a press conference at the Veterans Memorial by the beach as they spread the word to “Mallow Out.”

“This has been too much. The last couple of years, it’s gotten completely out of control. It has desecrated our memorial,” she said. “It’s time for our community to clean itself up.”

The Town Council is calling for all businesses to stop selling marshmallows in order to keep participation down. Newsom cited people throwing marshmallows that frozen, on fire and stuffed with batteries at last year’s Marshmallow War.

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City Council Pushed by OB to Set Earliest Date for Hearing on Community Plan

July 1, 2014 by Frank Gormlie
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Due to a last-minute Coastal Commission list of recommendations that the City has to consider, the long-scheduled City Council hearing on the OB Community Plan was postponed to July 29th.

This all came down on Monday, June 30th. Word had spread among OB planners, OB Town Council members, and other organizers that Mayor Faulconer was asking the Council to continue the long-awaiting hearing on the OB Plan due to time needed by city staff to review the Coastal Commission’s modifications.

So, the major mobilization of OBceans planned for a month, was called off – but only partially – as 40 people from OB were in Council Chambers on Monday, and thirty of them wore the blue ‘support OB’ T-shirts.

It has to be noted, that it was because of the presence of so many OBceans and because of the insistence by the OBceans who publicly spoke to have the Council review the OB Plan at the earliest possible date, that the July date was selectd. The Council had been considering September 19th …

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Acai Bowls Return to Lazy Hummingbird “Coffee Shop”

July 1, 2014 by Matthew Wood
Thumbnail image for Acai Bowls Return to Lazy Hummingbird “Coffee Shop”

Wrong standard had been applied to the coffee shop by over-zealous health inspector

By Matthew Wood

The acai bowls are back at the ‘Bird, and there is much rejoicing in OB.

For nearly a month, the coffee shop that shares a storefront with the OB Business Center on Santa Monica Avenue had to shut down the popular bowls and other food production because of what owner Danielle Eder calls an overzealous inspector.

“For the last three years, we’ve been getting A’s,” Eder said of health inspection reviews of the coffee shop, which just celebrated its third anniversary.

“They change the rules every day. There are so many exceptions to them, especially with food carts.”

She said the inspector – who she declined to name – had a problem with the way they were preparing some of their food and shut them down just before Memorial Day.

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Extreme Weather Watch: June 2014 – Torrential Rains, Baseball Sized Hail, Massive Midwest Flooding

July 1, 2014 by Source

Another Month, Another Couple of Towns Wiped Out by Tornadoes

By John Lawrence / San Diego Free Press

June 2014 was one of the worst months on record for extreme weather. Tuesday June 3 saw baseball size hail, 100 mph wind gusts and 11 tornadoes in South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa and Missouri. In Omaha and Des Moines there were hundreds of reports of hail. Trees toppled on autos. Wind damage was mostly from derecchio winds. Derecchio winds are straight line winds which can be as damaging as tornadoes.

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Mid-Ocean Plastics Cleanup Schemes: Too Little Too Late?

July 1, 2014 by Source

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABy Sarah “Steve” Mosko, PhD / Boogie Green

Imagine using a thimble to empty a bathtub, with the faucet still running. That’s how experts on ocean plastics pollution generally see schemes focused on extracting the debris from the open ocean instead of strategies to prevent plastic waste from getting there in the first place.

Interest in methods to rid the oceans of plastic debris is motivated by very real threats to the entire ocean food web. The “North Pacific Garbage Patch” is the most studied of the five subtropical gyres, gigantic whirlpools where waste is picked up and concentrated by slow-swirling currents. There, plastic debris already outweighs zooplankton, tiny creatures at the base of the food web, by a factor of 36:1, according to the latest trawls by the Algalita Marine Research Institute in Long Beach, CA.

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City Council Hearing on OB Plan Moved to July 29

July 1, 2014 by Frank Gormlie

At the insistence of OB leaders, planners and other OBceans at yesterday’s City Council meeting on the OB Community Plan, the Council set the earliest “possible” date for the actual hearing – July 29th.

Forty and more OBceans and supporters filled Council Chambers – on what was to be a fateful day of Ocean Beach. The City Council hearing on the OB Plan has been scheduled for weeks – if not months – for Monday, June 30th. OB planners had geared up a campaign to mobilize the coastal community downtown and with thousands of signatures on their petition.

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