January 2017

Defending the Earth from Donald Trump

January 31, 2017 by Source

By David Helvarg / The Progressive

As a coastal developer, Donald Trump has bulldozed ancient sand dunes and opposed offshore wind turbines (because they “ruined the view”) in Scotland, sought to build seawalls and fill in (smother) seagrass meadows and coral reefs in Florida, and built golf club luxury homes on a geologically unstable bluff in California where the eighteenth hole had earlier fallen into the sea.

Myron Ebell, the man Trump tapped to oversee the transition team at the Environmental Protection Agency, is a well-known climate-change denier from the libertarian (and partly fossil fuel funded) Competitive Enterprise Institute. In the past he’s worked as the D.C. lobbyist for Chuck “Rent-a-Riot” Cushman, one of the more extreme leaders of the Wise Use movement of the 1990s. Ebell also promoted “safer cigarettes” (the “clean coal” of our lungs) with funding from Philip Morris.

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OB Planning Board Responds to Proposed City Restrictions on Recreational Marijuana

January 31, 2017 by Staff
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Today, January 31st, the San Diego City Council will vote on a proposal involving recreational marijuana, that allows recreational marijuana sales, but would ban commercial and restrict personal cultivation and testing for safety and potency.

In response to the proposed ban, the Ocean Beach Planning Board wrote the City Council members to express their positions and concerns.

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OB Planning Board Meets – Wed., Feb. 1st

January 31, 2017 by Frank Gormlie
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The Ocean Beach Planning Board holds its monthly meeting this Wednesday, February 1st. The meeting begins at 6pm and is held in the community meeting room of the OB Recreation Center, 4726 Santa Monica Avenue.


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Death of Yoga Empire Founder in Point Loma Ruled Self-Inflicted Accident

January 31, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

Trevor Tice, the founder of a yoga fitness empire, whose death in December at his Point Loma mansion initially thought by police to be “suspicious”, accidentally inflicted serious injuries on himself in a number of falls and collapses. His death has been ruled an accident by the San Diego County Medical Examiner in a report released January 26th.

Tice, whose body was found by police December 12th at his house at 952 Cornish Drive, died of head injuries after several drunken falls inside his multi-million dollar home it was concluded. After testing, he was found to have been very intoxicated with a blood-alcohol level of .20 percent and had taken a benzodiazepine — a tranquilizer like Valium and other antidepressant drugs.

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I Do Not Remember Ever Being this Depressed Over the Results of an Election as this One.

January 31, 2017 by Judi Curry
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I Do Not Remember …

In all of the years I have voted – and I have voted in 31 scheduled elections plus special elections – ever being as depressed over the results of an election as I am of this one. I do not ever remember the feelings of despair every time the candidate of my choosing lost. I do not remember the tremendous depression that I feel now; the feeling of helplessness; the feeling of doom.

Every single time I pick up a newspaper, listen to the radio or television I am greeted with another horrifying statement by Donald Trump. It is all I can do to even type the words “President” and his name on the same line.

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One Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words – San Diego Airport Protest of Muslim Ban

January 30, 2017 by Staff

This proves that indeed one picture is worth a 1000 words. San Diego airport protest – where thousands of San Diegans gathered over the weekend to demonstrate against Trump’s Muslim ban.

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News from the Point Loma Avenue Commercial Area of Ocean Beach

January 30, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

Today, we look at what’s new among the businesses along Point Loma Avenue in south Ocean Beach.

This is the last part of our 3-part series on the commercial areas of Ocean Beach. (Here is the Voltaire Street update and here is the Newport Avenue update.)

The commercial area along Point Loma Avenue is the smallest and shortest business district, and like the other main business streets in OB, it’s a tough, challenging street – as it’s never easy being a small storefront along that one block. And our photo-report of the block is not pretty.

John Baker Frames Closed

One of the most well-known business, John Baker Picture Frames, has definitely closed its doors.

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Steve Bannon, White Nationalists and the Spread of Hate

January 30, 2017 by Doug Porter

Trump’s Scariest Move Yet
(It Wasn’t the Immigration Order)

By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

While the national media was focused on the effects of and responses to the executive order on immigration, President Donald Trump was making an even scarier move.

From Common Dreams:

President Donald Trump signed memorandums on Saturday that kicked the nation’s top military and intelligence advisers off the National Security Council’s (NSC) Principals Committee and elevated his chief strategist, Steve Bannon, in their place.

The memorandum gives Bannon, former executive chair of the right-wing website Breitbart News, a regular seat at some of the most sensitive meetings at the highest levels of government, along with other NSC meetings.

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Yoga Festival Held in Ocean Beach Was a “Labor of Love” for Organizers

January 30, 2017 by Staff
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It was readily apparent that the 4-day yoga festival held in Ocean Beach that began on Friday, Jan. 27th, was a rousing success. Some 800 people took part – and it continues today, Jan. 30th – as festival-goers had dozens of options in how to participate – from participating in traditional classes overlooking the ocean, wine-tasting-based yoga sessions, yoga with your dog, a “namastoked” sunset surf session.

More info on today, Jan. 30, see the website of the San Diego Yoga Festival.

One of the key coordinators was our own Melanie Williams, board member of the OB Town Counsil and owner of TriPower Yoga in Ocean Beach. She told the San Diego Union-Tribune that planning the festival and then pulling it together was “a labor of love.”

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Vigil Held in Louisiana for Woman Who Died After Being Swept off Ocean Beach Rocks

January 30, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

In Baton Rouge, Louisiana, a candle light vigil was held for Ariana Toro, the woman who died after being swept off rocks at the end of Santa Cruz Avenue in Ocean Beach January 21st. The vigil was held on Saturday, the 29th, as co-workers of Toro mourned her loss.

Meanwhile, in Ocean Beach, a debate has developed in our pages over how to respond to her death and the other injuries and fatalities along Sunset Cliffs, and Santa Cruz beach itself.

We offer the following report of the vigil as a way for OBceans to get to know the actual person who died off our cliffs …. from Baton Rouge channel 9CBS:

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Feckless Democrats and Business Unionists Fail Early Trump Era Tests

January 30, 2017 by Jim Miller

Making Deals with the Devil

Feckless Democrats PoliticianBy Jim Miller

As inspiring as the big marches were last week, it didn’t take long for evidence to emerge that there are still plenty of folks in the Democratic party and elsewhere who just don’t get what time it is.

As I noted in a post I wrote on Martin Luther King Jr. day, it was dismaying to see prominent Democrats like Senator Cory Booker and twelve of his Big Pharma funded friends vote against Bernie Sanders’ effort to reduce prescription drug prices before the inauguration.

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San Diegans Responding to Trump Muslim Ban With Airport Protests

January 30, 2017 by Doug Porter

Muslim Ban

By Doug Porter /San Diego Free Press

As of Noon Sunday – Jan. 29th -, two thousand people have responded to a call on Facebook for a protest scheduled for Terminal 2 (International Arrivals) at Lindbergh Field starting at 5pm.

According to social media posts, the theme for the demonstration is #NoBan #NoWall.

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News of the Newport Avenue Commercial Area in Ocean Beach

January 27, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

This is the second part in a series on the changes, the projects and the comings-and-goings of businesses in the commercial areas and streets of Ocean Beach. More visual with photos than actual news, everything was taken on Wednesday, Jan. 25th. Yesterday, we covered Voltaire Street.

The Newport Avenue Commercial Area

Newport Ave in Ocean Beach is a tough street. Commercial rents are high and business endeavors are risky. There is a constant turnover in the storefronts that struggle to survive, while such long-term establishments like the OB Hardware Store and Newport Optometry maintain their vigilance. Antique stores are slimming down but beer pubs are expanding faster than one could imagine a decade ago.

Little Miss Brewery

The latest beer tasting room on Newport Ave is Little Miss, a taproom that is moving into the space where Smart Clips Salon and Parker’s gift shop used to be.

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Ed Harris on the Dangers at the End of Santa Cruz Ave in Ocean Beach

January 27, 2017 by Frank Gormlie
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By Ed Harris

The rocky shore between the Ocean Beach Pier and Santa Cruz Cove is an area that has claimed several lives.

On January 21, two woman were swept into the water at Santa Cruz Cove. Lifeguards responded and learned a citizen had rescued one women but the other was still in the water. The surf at this point was 15 feet, making the rescue attempt difficult and dangerous. Lifeguards entered the water unable to see her as they battled strong surge and tried to breath in the thick ocean foam. After 40 minutes, the woman was recovered and transported to the hospital, but unfortunately did not survive. Several lifeguards sustained minor injuries, and two were taken to the hospital for observation.

This scenario has happened there before.

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Donna Frye and Irene McCormack Show Solidarity with Kasparian’s Accusers

January 27, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

Kasparian's accusers

“Doing nothing is not an option for people of good conscience.”

By Brent E. Beltrán / San Diego Free Press

On a cold Wednesday evening in Kearny Mesa prominent San Diegans Donna Frye and Irene McCormack joined community members to show their solidarity with Sandy Naranjo, Isabel Vasquez and Anabel Arauz and call for the resignation of the President of UFCW Local 135 and San Diego and Imperial Labor Council, Mickey Kasparian.

Naranjo, Vasquez, and Arauz filed separate lawsuits against Kasparian accusing him of gender discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, and other misdeeds. Also named in all three complaints are the union itself and in Arauz’s filing, Richard Barerra, executive assistant of the local.

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Eye-Witness to the Women’s March in Washington, D.C.

January 27, 2017 by Source

Editor: Barbara Zaragoza, one of the editors of the San Diego Free Press – media partners of the OB Rag, traveled to Washington, DC for the inauguration protests held last weekend. Her main goal was to participate in the Women’s March held on the day after the inauguration, January 21. She’s been filing photos and reports since. And here is her eye-witness report from that historic Saturday.
By Barbara Zaragoza / San Diego Free Press

The Women’s March in Washington D.C. did not encompass a single issue. As the California Senator Kamala Harris explained during her speaker presentation:

‘You want to talk about women’s issues? Let’s talk about national security. You want to talk about women’s issues? That’s fantastic. Let’s talk about health care. Let’s talk about education. Let’s talk about criminal justice reform. Let’s talk about climate change.

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News from the Voltaire Street Commercial Area of Ocean Beach

January 26, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

Ocean Beach has three commercial areas – the main one, of course, along Newport Avenue; a second one along Voltaire Street in north OB, and the smaller enterprise zone along Point Loma Avenue in south OB.

And within each commercial area, storefronts and businesses are constantly changing, new ones coming in and others closing or moving on. Plus construction projects also add to the mix.

Focusing on the Voltaire Street area today, this then is the beginning of an update to each business area of OB, based on a visit to them by this reporter on Wednesday, January 25th, .

Voltaire Street

People’s Food “Garden Restaurant”

The much-anticipated vegetarian restaurant being constructed on Voltaire Street by People’s Food Co-op is still in progress.

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Repeal and (Don’t) Replace

January 26, 2017 by John Lawrence

By John Lawrence

Woman holding sign: "We [heart] Obamacare"

“Repeal and Replace” Just a Slogan

Republicans were fine with the way it was for the health care system before Obamacare went into effect. So why not just go back to the good old days when a pre-existing condition was enough to let an insurance company reject you from coverage?

The good old days when price gouging by insurance companies was the order of the day. The good old days when pharmaceutical corporations could charge whatever they want for life saving drugs. Oh, that part is still true under Obamacare.

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Pipelines, Propaganda, and Even More Protests

January 26, 2017 by Doug Porter

No pipelines

Indigenous Tribes, Environmentalists, and Scientists Feel Trump’s Wrath

By Doug Porter

The number one selling book on Amazon earlier this week was George Orwell’s ‘1984’ the classic story of a world of government surveillance, propaganda and “newspeak.” In the book, the “Ministry of Truth” actually delivers lies.

I suspect this uptick in sales (and the announcement of additional printing by Penguin Books) comes from the realization by Americans that lying is officially part of the new administration’s program.

Now it’s time to acknowledge ‘alternative facts’ are just one part of what’s going on. The tactics of this administration also include chaos, as proven by the rapid-fire attacks on institutions, humans, and the planet over the past couple of days.

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ACLU Announces First Legal Action On Trump Conflicts Of Interest

January 26, 2017 by Source

By ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties

The American Civil Liberties Union has taken legal action seeking documents on conflicts of interest and violations of the Constitution and federal law posed by President Trump’s and his family’s business interests.

The organization also released a Seven-Point Plan laying out how it intends to challenge other Trump policies and protect the Constitution.

The efforts are made possible by the organization’s new Constitution Defense Fund, which was established following the election.

The first legal action is a Freedom of Information Act request

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Campaign Against Labor Leader for Sexual Harassment Charges Heats Up – Protest to Call for Mickey Kasparian’s Resignation – Wed., Jan. 25th

January 25, 2017 by Staff

The campaign against San Diego labor leader Mickey Kasparian is heating up, as a protest calling for his resignation as head of the local labor council is being held today, Wednesday, Jan. 25th at 6pm outside a labor delegates meeting.

Three women have filed gender discrimination, sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuits against Kasparian, the president of UFCW Local 135, who also sits as the President of the Labor Council.

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Compassion as a Radical Act

January 25, 2017 by Source

compassionBy Dave Patterson / Vets for Peace

On a cold night in January I joined Stan Levin and Gil Field delivering sleeping bags to the San Diego homeless, what we call the compassion campaign. Dealing directly with the homeless is painful because there they are in our faces with their cold, hunger and suffering laid bare.

What’s surprising is the number of people with just a thin blanket that will decline a sleeping bag because others nearby need it more. How ironic that people with nothing can have more compassion than those of us with plenty.

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Early Speculation on County Supervisor Races

January 25, 2017 by Source

County Supervisor

By Don Greene / San Diego Free Press

While it seems the dust is just beginning to settle on last November’s election, it is a perfect time to begin to look at the 2018/2020 County Supervisor elections and take a look at the players we either know or have heard will be making a run.

The last election put Kristin Gaspar into office in the Third District, replacing incumbent Dave Roberts. This put the composition of the Board back to “all Republican.” This could be disastrous moving forward, especially in the land use arena. Projects like Merriam Mountain, Lilac Hills Ranch, Safari Highlands Ranch and others in the North County could be given the green light by an all Republican, pro-development Board.

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News from Ocean Beach and Point Loma – Late January 2017

January 24, 2017 by Frank Gormlie
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Victim of Sunset Cliffs Wave Recent Graduate of LSU

Adriana Toro, the tragic victim of a wave that swept her and a friend off rocks and into the surf at the end of Santa Cruz Avenue, was a recent graduate of Louisiana State University. Toro died at the hospital where she had been taken Saturday night, Jan. 20. Her companion, also hospitalized, is expected to recover.

* OB Yoga Festival runs from Friday, January 27th through Monday, January 30th.
* OB and Point Loma Residents Say Airplane Noise Getting Worse
* Slightly Stoopid to Produce Smokable Record
* Bank Robber Hits Midway Area Bank Twice Out of 4 Holdups

* Kilowatt Getting Close to Opening
* New Mexican Restaurant Headed for Liberty Station
* Mother’s Saloon to Offer Acoustic Wed Nights


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Crowd at Peninsula Planners’ Meeting Disappointed by City Presentation on 30-Ft Height Limit

January 24, 2017 by Source

By Geoff Page

A sizeable crowd attended the Peninsula Community Planning Board (PCPB) regular monthly meeting last Thursday, January 19, 2017, at the Point Loma/Hervey Branch Library.

Usually it’s a sparse audiences for planning board meetings, but of particular interest to many in the in attendance was the appearance of Robert Vacchi, Director of the Development Services Department (DSD) – there to make a presentation on the 30-foot height limit.

Vacchi Presentation on 30-Ft Height Limit Disappoints

During Vacchi’s presentation – which was listed as the second information item on the otherwise non-crowded agenda – he explained that the city had performed a height analysis on the controversial Emerson and Evergreen project in Roseville and determined the project met the requirements.

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PETITION: Use Qualcomm Stadium Parking Lot as a SafePark-Camp for the Homeless

January 24, 2017 by Source

Sign the Petition
By Women Occupy San Diego

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer touts the 640 of 3000 miles of City street repaired during his 32 months in office. Good for you, Mr. Mayor, this shows you can accomplish something when you set your mind to it.

NEXT UP: Get people made homeless by the past 6 years’ replacement of 10,000 units of affordable housing by market-rate housing, vacation rentals, hotels, offices and retail OFF THESE STREETS.

Now that the Chargers have announced they are moving to L.A. — YOU can make that GARGANTUAN parking lot at City-owned Qualcomm Stadium into a network of SafePark (people sleeping in their vehicles),


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Mayor’s Office Put on the Hot-Seat at Midway Planners’ Meeting

January 24, 2017 by Source
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Issue of Homelessness in Midway Area Dominates Monthly Meeting

By Geoff Page

The Mayor’s Office was put on the proverbial hot-seat during the recent Midway/Pacific Highway Community Planning Group (Midway) monthly meeting – held on Thursday, January 19, 2017 at the San Diego City College – West City Campus on Fordham Street Room 208. (The meeting is ordinarily held the third Wednesday of the month, the Thursday meeting was a one time occurrence.)

The meeting started at 3:00 in the afternoon and continued until 5:00. There were not enough board members present to constitute a quorum but this was not a serious problem because no action items, requiring a board vote, were on the agenda.

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OB Town Council Meeting – Parade Winners, New Reps from Politicos, Community Concerns – Wed., Jan. 25th

January 24, 2017 by Staff
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The Ocean Beach Town Council is kicking off the new year with its first public meeting – Wednesday, January 25th – where community representatives from local elected officials’ offices will be introduced, the winners of the OB Parade will receive their plaques and a discussion of community concerns will be held.

The meeting runs from 7pm to 8:30pm and will be held at the Masonic Center, located at 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd in Ocean Beach 92107.

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“I am a Person” – Iconic Photo from San Diego Women’s March

January 23, 2017 by Staff

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An Open Letter to My Friends Who Support Trump

January 23, 2017 by Source
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An Open Letter to My Friends Who Support Trump – and the Modern Republican Party

By Scott Stephen

Since the Civil War, there has been no greater political divide than in America today. Keeping a friendship alive with someone in the opposing party is quite challenging. I count many Republicans among my good friends, relatives and business associates. Some of these folks have been extremely loyal to me over the years.

If you’re my friend, I truly love you whether you’re a Democrat, Green, Republican or Libertarian. And I generally avoid political discussion with friends who have opposing views unless I sense those opinions are not deep rooted. Despite my efforts, I have lost a few friends along the way mostly due to Facebook posts which offended some individuals. Many of these same lost friends had themselves posted political articles that often bothered me but it has been my policy not to comment on a friends post unless I agree with it or in cases where the information is false and/or has been debunked.

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