OB Torrey Pines Saratoga cut

OBceans Are Being Asked to Call Zapf’s Office – 236-6622 to Complain

The City of San Diego has determined that at least two of the 80 year old Torrey Pines on Saratoga Avenue in Ocean Beach must be cut down. And the city wheeled out Atlas Tree Service and they have been cutting the trees down bit by bit, limb by limb.

The Torrey Pines, a protected species, are at least 75 feet in height.

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Post image for The Torrey Pines of Ocean Beach

There are a number of Torrey Pines trees in Ocean Beach, as any resident worth their salt can tell you. We have been concerned about one on the 4600 block of Long Branch Avenue – and are following that story so watch for an update.

Meanwhile, there’s an entire “forest” of them on the 4600 block of Saratoga Avenue. Beginning this week, the City of San Diego has a crew out there doing trimming. Here is what Drew Potocki, the city’s “urban forester”, had to say about that work in an email to Thyme Curtis of Councilman Faulconer’s office:

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Showdown Looms for Feb. 10th-12th at Commission Monthly Hearing

A virtual tsunami of opposition has met the move on the California Coastal Commission to oust the head of its staff, Charles Lester. The move – called “a coup” by environmentalists – is an attempt by the pro-development clique of commissioners to remove Lester who is the Executive Director.

And the move is in the middle of a key decision by the Commission on the fate of a huge development project near Newport Beach of million dollar mansions.

Lester’s fate is supposed to be decided at their monthly meeting, to be held this month in Morro Bay on February 10th through 12th. Here’s our initial post on the controversy.

But the tsunami or storm of opposition unleashed by the attempted coup may very well be powerful enough to crush this effort to make the Commission more-developer friendly at the very state agency that is supposed to guard California’s coast. Consider these elements of the storm:

Post image for Survey: Saldana 3 to 1 Over Faulconer

The OB Rag ran a survey of our readers over their choice of major candidates for San Diego mayor, and Lori Saldana bested Kevin Faulconer 3 to 1,

In our online poll which ran for about a week, 51% of respondents chose Saldana and 17% chose Faulconer.

This is no huge surprise as OB Rag readers have more of a liberal bent than a cross-section of San Diegans. But it does show that Saldana definitely has a base among liberals, progressives and independents in this town.

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quality of lifeBy Jim Miller

In a recent interview, Naomi Klein discussed the reality facing anyone interested in promoting meaningful climate action.

The “structural problem” we face, according to Klein, is that people can “simultaneously understand the medium to long term risks of climate change” and still believe it is in their “short term economic [or political] interest” to continue business as usual.

This is precisely the situation concerned San Diegans face when dealing with the San Diego Association of Governments’ (SANDAG) limited vision when it comes to taking the actions needed to address the pressing threat of climate change at the local level.

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Man’s Body Found Off Osprey Street in Sunset Cliffs Area

February 8, 2016 by Staff
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A man’s body was found in the water off Osprey Street in the Sunset Cliffs area of Point Loma late Sunday morning, Feb. 6th.

A photographer in a private helicopter first spotted the body about a half mile to 3/4’s of a mile off Osprey around 11:30 a.m. Police were notified and they sent their own helicopter, which at first, it appears, could not see the body.

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Women’s Museum of California: “Women in Action”

February 5, 2016 by Source
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By South OB Girl

Tucked in Liberty Station, across the street from Slater’s 50/50 Burgers, Ace Hardware, and Con Pane Bakery on Historic Decatur Road is a hidden gem of the peninsula and beach community — the Women’s Museum of California. Little did you know that in the second story above the first floor exhibit hall lies an extensive archive and collection devoted to women’s history.

Opening on Thursday evening Feb. 4th was the museum’s new exhibit, which showcases the history of the United Nations commitment to global equality and women’s issues, and celebrates the 70th year of the U.N.’s Commission on the Status of Women.

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February Events Calendar for the OBcean of Conscience

February 5, 2016 by Staff

Hands AcossSandPic

February 9th Tuesday, 6pm Join the Coalition for Labor and Community Solidarity for an initial planning meeting for a day of action on May 1st, 2016 in San Diego to commemorate International Workers’ Day. ICWJ Offices, 3758 30th Street Info & Updates

February 10th Wednesday, 6pm –Coastal Commission Public Participation Hearing;
Scottish Rite Center, 1895 Camino Del Rio South (Off I-8); attend and speak out against the current effort to sack Coastal Commission executive director Charles Lester.

February 11 Thursday 7 p.m. Film night “Years of Living Dangerously“; We will be continuing with the Emmy award winning 2014 documentary focusing on global warming. February will feature the last Episodes from “Years of Living Dangerously”. Each episode features celebrity investigators, who each have a history of environmental activism, and well-known journalists, each of whom have a background in environmental reportage. They travel to areas around the world and throughout the U.S. affected by global warming to interview experts and ordinary people affected by and seeking solutions to the effects of global warming. Free of Charge :-)

Every Saturday at 10:00 a.m. -Climate Mobilization Coalition Meeting – February 6th, February 13th, February 20th, February 27th Ocean Beach People’s Cooperative Community Room, 4765 Voltaire Street, 92107. Come help plan for the upcoming Climate Action events. Contact: oceanbeachgreencenter@gmail.com

February 12th Friday 6:30 p.m. Film Showing: “This Changes Everything” Sierra Club, 8304 Clairmont Mesa Boulevard #101, 92111.

AND MUCH MORE ….

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“Dump Dumanis” and Justice for Fridoon Nehad Rally – Friday, Feb. 5th

February 5, 2016 by Staff
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Coalition Accuses District Attorney of 22 Counts of Abuse of Power

Today, Friday, February 5th, downtown San Diego will witness a “Dump Dumanis” and Justice for Fridoon Nehad rally in front of the Hall of Justice on Broadway.

Dumanis, of course, is the District Attorney of San Diego County and Fridoon Nehad was the unarmed Afghan immigrant gunned down by a San Diego police officer in the Midway District last April.

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Calling on SANDAG to Invest in Better Transit, Safer Streets, Good Jobs and Clean Air

February 5, 2016 by Source

EHC Monique

Will SANDAG’s proposed sales tax increase serve your community’s needs?

By Monique López / Environmental Health Coalition

We all need to move. How we get from place to place is deeply connected to our quality of life.

Unfortunately, not all communities have the same access to healthy, safe, reliable and affordable transportation options, such as public transit and biking and walking paths.

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Tiny Village of Tiny Shelters for San Diego Homeless: Small is the New Sexy

February 5, 2016 by Source

Danielles Tiny HomeBy Jeeni Criscenzo

No question about it—being involved in a coalition to build a tiny village of tiny shelters for people who are without a place to live, is damn exciting!

I can’t put my finger on exactly why this is taking over my brain activity—from waking up in the morning ready to get online and share ideas, to dreaming about it at night.

Maybe it’s what someone at our community meeting last week said about it—tiny homes are sexy!

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Is This Encroachment Into Our Public Space?

February 4, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

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Take a look at these photos …

This is The Joint at the intersection of Newport and Cable setting up an outside eating area.

We’ve been contacted by a reader who objects to this encroachment on more than half of the public sidewalk by both The Joint and the soon-to-be-open OB Brewery closer to the ocean.

Here is what reader “CG” says:

The sidewalk expansion of several restaurants is starting to impede pedestrians, and I noticed just recently that The Joint on Cable and Newport has staked out a large area for future tables with metal fencing with permanent posts in the cement.

The Joint is at the busiest corner of the Farmer’s Market at Newport and Cable. . They’ve clearly claimed more than half of the sidewalk without regard the other obstacles like the water meter, street light, and traffic light.

With the street light and a water meter also on the sidewalk and just opposite, I don’t see how anyone in a wheelchair can pass without asking others to move. And, I’m also concerned about the foot traffic being impacted on that corner during Farmers’ Market or just regular foot traffic on a sunny day.

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A Fresh Start for Gilmore Jewelers after Ocean Beach Icon Moves to Liberty Station

February 4, 2016 by Matthew Wood

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By Matthew Wood

Fear not, fans of Gilmore Jewelers. The iconic shop is still in business. It’s just a bit tougher to find, and that’s just the way Gary Gilmore likes it.

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A Call for OBceans and Point Lomans to Support “the Conscience of OB”

February 3, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

Ben Franklin press

Michael Turko of the well-known “Turko Files” once said that the OB Rag “is the conscience of OB.”

We are humbled by his compliment. And we also think that if you – dear reader – peruse the following list of gains and achievements for Ocean Beach that the OB Rag was instrumental in making happen, then you, too, would agree with Turko.

And if you do agree with Turko, then we appeal to you to support our efforts to maintain an online newspaper for Ocean Beach and the Peninsula.

Consider these:

Saving the OB Library. The OB Rag was instrumental in helping save the OB Library from closing its doors when it was on Mayor Sanders’ butcher block.

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OB Planning Board Agenda – Wed., Feb. 3

February 3, 2016 by Staff

Feb. Meeting Is Last Meeting for Any Potential Board Candidates to Attend to Qualify

Here is the agenda for the OB Planning Board’s monthly meeting, which meets Wednesday night, February 3rd, at the OB Recreation Center, located at 4722 Santa Monica Ave. The meeting usually begins very close to 6pm.

Of note is the fact that this meeting is the last meeting any potential Board candidate may attend in order to qualify. All candidates must have attended at least one Board meeting before the Board’s annual election on March 2nd in order to qualify as a Board candidate. 7 of the Board’s 14 seats are up for grabs.

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Are the Planets in Alignment Causing Me to Be Out of Alignment?

February 3, 2016 by Judi Curry
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By Judi Curry

I’m not usually a negative person.

I try to find something positive in even the worse situation, but for the past few weeks it seems that nothing is going right in my life.

Maybe it is because February, a month that used to hold romantic overtones is here, and there are none of those happenings going to occur. No one on Valentine’s Day to send me a box of my favorite candy; in fact no one to send me a card. OK – maybe I’ll receive one from my family, but that is not what I am talking about.

My birthday is also in February. That in itself is a traumatic day for the obvious reasons, …

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The Face of Homelessness in San Diego

February 3, 2016 by John Lawrence

San Diego Has the Fourth Highest Number of Homeless in the US and that Doesn’t Even Count Most Homeless Families

homeless familyBy John Lawrence

I met a homeless woman at a coffee shop in downtown San Diego. She had emailed me to correct a few points in a previous article I had written about the homeless. Her name is Jingles, not her real name, of course.

That’s the name she goes by downtown. She’s tough, savvy, intelligent, resourceful, wise to the ways of the street. She is 55 years old with several health related problems and three small dogs.

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Local Gardens: A Healthy Way to Build Communities

February 3, 2016 by Source

Community garden Jaxport via Flickr

By Jill Richardson / Common Dreams

Mark Winne, an author and anti-hunger activist, often says that the most important word in “community garden” isn’t “garden.” I saw this firsthand not long ago.

Standing in the sun between several small garden plots all morning, it may not have looked like much was going on. A few people stood in a circle, chatting. Occasionally, one would leave, or another would arrive. Several others were nearby, working in their garden plots.

Some of the people were black. Some were white. And two — a mother and child — appeared Southeast Asian.

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“Well, at least we don’t have to worry about travelers anymore.”

February 2, 2016 by Source

r cobb no anarchy ed color

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Ocean Beach and Point Loma News – Early February 2016

February 2, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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15 IPads Stolen From Special Needs Students at Pioneer Day School

Motorist Killed by Falling Tree in PB On Her Way to Play Music in Ocean Beach

Does Councilwoman Zapf Enjoy Her Job?

Some OB Businesses Still Recovering From First Storm

Urbanization, financial backlog hurt flood control

Lifeguards and City Agree on Extended Health Care

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Pinyon-Juniper Forests: BLM is a Ranching Industry Tool

February 2, 2016 by Source

Public lands ranching is destroying the Western United States

Cattle watering station near Cave Valley, NVCattle watering station near Cave Valley, NV (Photo: Max Wilbert)

By Will Falk/ San Diego Free Press

Public lands ranching is destroying the Western United States. It has pushed native plant species to the brink of extinction. It causes soil to erode so quickly the land cannot keep up. Livestock are poisoning and depleting water supplies, killing perennial stream flows, and are making it increasingly difficult for surface water to accumulate.

Stockmen and the animals they raise have devastated populations of iconic American animals like bison, elk, pronghorn, and sage-grouse.

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100 Year Old Tree at OB Elementary Falls Victim to El Nino Winds

February 2, 2016 by Staff

OB Damage 2-2-16 ElemSchool 2

A one-hundred year old tree in the courtyard of OB Elementary School was a victim of the strong El Nino winds that hit Ocean Beach and San Diego on Sunday and Monday, Jan. 31st and Feb. 1st.

Fox5 covered the tragedy and this is part of their report:

“It’s so sad. The kids are just so sad to see it go….It’s part of our school, a part of our tradition,” said 2nd grade teacher Angela Wunder, who has been teaching at the school for decades.

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More Debate on Short-Term Vacation Rentals in San Diego

February 2, 2016 by Source
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Editor: In the spirit of continuing the public discussion on short term vacation rentals here in San Diego and at the beach, we offer the following by our friend, John P Anderson, a proponent of short term rentals – whose views on this issue clearly depart from ours.

Some Market Thoughts on Short-Term Rentals in San Diego

By John P Anderson

The topic of short-term rentals in San Diego continues to be debated and potential rules / changes to rules will be a hot topic in 2016.

After ending 2015 with a well attended Planning Commission meeting in December it looks like the next official meeting / hearing will be in late February or March at the City Council. It is sure to be a long hearing, with hundreds of San Diegans attending and providing commentary both for and against short-term accommodations in San Diego neighborhoods.

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Got Damage From the Storm?

February 1, 2016 by Frank Gormlie

OB damage 2-1-16 02

Just about every neighborhood has a tree or large branch down.

Check these out. Palm tree down on Bolinas – …

Got any photos of wind or sea damage to share? Send them in to obragblog@gmail.com

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Lessons From 1965: Why Employment-Based Reform Is Xenophobia In Disguise

February 1, 2016 by Source
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By Carlos Batara

Politics is a game of unintended consequences. One needs to look no further than the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

As a San Diego / San Bernardino immigration lawyer, it is not uncommon to hear immigration activists praise the virtues of the Act. Yet, a retrospective review reveals that it was politics as usual. Benevolence was not the foremost consideration of most in Congress.

The Civil Rights Connection: Fact And Fiction

The Act was inspired by the Civil Rights Act as well as our nation’s quest for ethnic diversity and racial equality. In some political corners, the immigration bill was characterized as a progressive extension of the civil rights movement.

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Clinton Democrats in 2016: Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here

February 1, 2016 by Jim Miller

botticcelli inferno

By Jim Miller

Whatever happens in today’s Iowa caucuses, one thing is abundantly clear—when confronted with a credible challenge from the left in the form of the Bernie Sanders, the response of much of the leadership of the Democratic Party and their allies in the corporate media has been to defend the status quo with great zeal even if it meant borrowing tropes from the right.

Whether it was red-baiting from Thomas Freidman or condescension mixed with an appeal to “realism” from Paul Krugman, the drumbeat was loud and consistent: Sanders’ agenda, with it’s direct ties to the legacies of Martin Luther King Jr. and FDR was simply an unrealistic option in the neoliberal era.

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Televangelist Morris Cerullo Plans Biblical Disneyland in Mission Valley

January 29, 2016 by Source
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Controversial televangelist’s massive project up for review

By Ken Williams / Mission Valley News

A controversial Pentecostal televangelist who recently purchased the San Diego Resort Hotel complex in Mission Valley has proposed a massive mixed-use redevelopment project that would include a religious retreat, underground catacombs, a Jerusalem-style Wailing Wall, an outdoor amphitheater and bazaar, a TV studio, and timeshare units for his followers.

Morris Cerullo — the 84-year-old televangelist who proclaims to be a faith healer and miracle worker — bases his global ministry at 3545 Aero Court in San Diego’s Serra Mesa neighborhood. The proposed Morris Cerullo Legacy International Center would be built at 875 Hotel Circle South on 18.1 acres located off Interstate 8 in Mission Valley.

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Councilwoman Zapf and Her Cameras at Issue at OB Town Council Meeting

January 29, 2016 by Source
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Report from the Ocean Beach Town Council Meeting – Wednesday, January 27 – 2016

By Activist of OB

The first meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council (OBTC) for the new year was highly attended (Hooray!) by both community members and local media.

What motivated the crowds? Perhaps New Year’s Resolutions to be more involved, perhaps the Girl Scout cookies being sold in the back of the room, heck….even District 2 elected City Councilmember Lorie Zapf was physically present! Wow!

Zapf Surprised at Turnout and Media Presence

Councilmember Lorie Zapf approached the front of the room and voiced her surprise by all of the media present, nervously laughing as she commented that she told her family she was just going to an OBTC meeting.

I said to myself “Yep, Welcome to OB, Lorie Zapf”.

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The Lessons of Porter Ranch

January 29, 2016 by Source

Porter Ranch image

By Nicola Peill-Moelter, Ph.D. / SanDiego 350.org

The massive leak at the Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility is a stark example of why natural gas is a significant health and safety risk and not a bridge fuel to our clean energy future. The facility, the second largest in the U.S., stores vast amounts of natural gas at high pressure in underground wells once used for oil extraction more than fifty years ago.

On or about October 23rd a rupture in a 60-year old injection well pipe a thousand feet underground initiated the leak. At its peak the leak had an estimated rate of one-hundred twenty-five thousand pounds of methane per hour. To date, the cumulative emissions from this single source is equivalent to 25% of the state’s annual methane emissions from major sources like agriculture and landfills, equivalent to the annual climate pollution of almost half a million cars.

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OB Rag Poll: Sanders, Clinton, Trump

January 28, 2016 by Frank Gormlie
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For a week, the OB Rag ran a poll on the presidential preferences of our readers. The poll was a wide-open horse race that had all the major candidates of both major parties running against each other, and included most of the top-tiered GOP candidates (however, it did not include and we now think it should have included Jeb Bush).

Overall, Bernie Sanders came out way ahead – with nearly 51% of the total vote. Near each other, Hillary Clinton had 17.5% and Trump had 16.7% following Sanders way down the sheet.

Marco Rubio had 3.3%, Ted Cruz had 1.7%, Chris Christie had .8%. Another 3.3% wanted another GOP candidate (Bush?).

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Councilwoman Zapf Questioned by Community and Media on Her Police Camera Plan

January 28, 2016 by Staff
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Audience at OB Town Council Meeting Divided Over the Police Cameras

The packed Masonic Center became focused on the planned installation of the police surveillance cameras along OB’s waterfront.

With standing-room only, Wednesday nights OB Town Council meeting became the center of the controversy over the 10-camera system, as Councilwoman Lorie Zapf (pronounced “Zaph”) was in attendance and forced to answer questions from the crowd and the media about them.

It was the first opportunity for opponents of the cameras – and community members at large – to question and confront Zapf about the cameras, …

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