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US: California (News/Activism)

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  • George Lucas might build affordable housing

    05/20/2012 12:20:42 PM PDT · by SmithL · 32 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 5/20/12 | Phillip Matier, Andrew Ross, Chronicle Columnists
    "Star Wars" creator George Lucas could, indeed, make good on his idea of building affordable housing right next door to the high-income NIMBYs who blocked his plans for a production studio near his Lucas Valley ranch complex. His Marin County neighbors and conservationists have dismissed Lucas' musings as sour grapes, and say low-income housing could never be built in such a remote and environmentally sensitive location.But those in the know disagree.There's a feeling on the Board of Supervisors, which has final say over the project, that it fits into the county's desire for more low-income housing - and by the...
  • Night herons settling down in downtown Oakland

    05/20/2012 9:51:40 AM PDT · by thecodont · 11 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle / ^ | Sunday, May 20, 2012 | Carolyn Jones
    Downtown Oakland has no shortage of wildlife. Now it even has some of the nonhuman variety. A colony of giant, squawking, black-crowned night herons has taken up residence in the gritty urban core of Oakland, apparently thriving amid the tattoo parlors and Afghan restaurants, Occupiers and bus exhaust. "Oh my God, I saw one walking right down 14th Street. I'm like, 'What is that?' " said Jalima Morales, 26, who saw a few more of the striking blue birds as she was walking down Jackson Street recently. "Now I see them all the time. They're so loud. It sounds like...
  • California State Senate Passes Anti-Gun Legislation

    05/20/2012 7:59:48 AM PDT · by marktwain · 8 replies
    Ammoland ^ | 18 May, 2012 | NRA-ILA
    Charlotte, NC --( The battle for your Second Amendment rights continues to rage in Sacramento. On Monday, May 14, the California Senate passed two bills that are detrimental to California gun owners. Senate Bill 1315 passed in the state Senate by a vote of 21 to 14 and Senate Bill 1366 passed by a vote of 23 to 14. Senate Bill 1315, introduced by anti-gun extremist state Senator Kevin de León (D-22), is just a stepping stone to completely destroying California’s firearm preemption law. Firearm preemption laws are in place to standardize firearm laws across the state. This critical law...
  • California's high speed rail boondoggle just won't die (Jerry Brown still wants $100 billion rail)

    05/20/2012 7:57:01 AM PDT · by Qbert · 13 replies
    American Thinker ^ | 5/20/2012 | Rick Moran
    The Wall Street Journal has the backstory about how Governor Jerry Brown is insisting on trying to complete the high speed rail plan despite a budget shortfall of $16 billion: Transportation experts warn that the 500-mile bullet train from San Francisco to Los Angeles could cost more than $100 billion, though the Governor pegs the price at a mere $68 billion. The state has $12.3 billion in pocket, $9 billion from the state and $3.3 billion from the feds, but Mr. Brown hasn't a clue where he'll get the rest. [Snip] In 2008 voters approved $9 billion in bonds for...
  • Nancy Pelosi Defends Dems Rev. Wright Fundraising Appeal

    05/20/2012 6:56:02 AM PDT · by Sub-Driver · 14 replies
    Nancy Pelosi Defends Dems Rev. Wright Fundraising Appeal ABC House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi defended the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee on “This Week” for sending a fundraising email that attempted to capitalize on the apparently dead advertising plan to link President Obama to Rev. Jeremiah Wright. The plan has been repudiated by Mitt Romney as well as the head of the super PAC reported to have been considering backing the plan. “Why would we have any regrets?” asked Pelosi, dismissing Romney’s rejection of the proposed advertising campaign. During our interview, Pelosi cited a previous attack by Romney on President Obama...
  • California’s Train to Nowhere

    05/20/2012 5:41:13 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 2 replies ^ | May 20, 2012 | Daniel J. Mitchell
    I’ve explained before that “high-speed rail” is a boondoggle, and I’ve also posted a thorough presentation on the topic from the folks at Reason about this issue. But some politicians can’t resist throwing good money after bad on these money-losing schemes. The latest example is from the People’s Republic of California, where Governor Jerry Brown is acting as if he wants the state to become a basket case.Here are some passages from the Wall Street Journal’s editorial on the topic.The good news in this debacle is that the state’s fiscal woes will make it nearly impossible to complete Governor Jerry...
  • Port of LA ship gas leak cause still unknown

    05/19/2012 4:43:21 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 6 replies
    KABC) ^ | Saturday, May 19, 2012
    LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Firefighters are still trying to figure out what caused a gas leak that prompted a ship to be evacuated at the Port of Los Angeles. The incident began Friday afternoon in the 700 block of East New Dock Street at Henry Ford Avenue. Fire officials said an unknown gas was leaking from a large container in the cargo ship. Fire crews unloaded several containers one by one before stopping the spill. Officials still don't know what kind of gas was leaking. The ship was leaving Los Angeles when the leak was reported. Officials have not said...
  • California's budget problems linger while many other states shape up

    05/19/2012 11:20:36 AM PDT · by SmithL · 19 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/19/12 | David Siders
    The pile-on was in full effect within hours of Gov. Jerry Brown's announcement this week that California's budget deficit had grown to $15.7 billion, with The Week giving its national audience a summary of the Golden State's financial affairs. "California's financial apocalypse," the magazine offered. "A concise guide." Fox News played the Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Californication," and host Greg Gutfeld proclaimed Brown captain of "the Titanic that is California, a state so broke it may ask Greece for a loan." On Friday, the Democratic governor slapped back on national TV. "This is not Europe," Brown told Charlie Rose on...
  • The teachers union that's failing California

    05/19/2012 7:11:47 AM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 51 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | May 18, 2012 | OP-ED
    California's education tailspin has been blamed on class sizes, on the property tax restrictions enforced by Proposition 13, on an influx of Spanish-speaking students. But no portrait of the schools' downfall would be complete without mention of the California Teachers Assn., or CTA, arguably the state's most powerful union and a political behemoth that has blocked meaningful education reform, protected failing and even criminal educators, and pushed for pay raises and benefits that have reached unsustainable levels. The CTA's power dates back to September 1975, when Gov. Jerry Brown signed the Rodda Act, which allowed teachers to bargain collectively. Within...
  • Centrist GOP candidates may offer chance to end California gridlock

    05/19/2012 7:04:04 AM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 10 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | May 19, 2012 | By Michael J. Mishak and Anthony York
    SACRAMENTO — For years, running for office as a Republican in California boiled down to one core pledge, bound by a candidate's signature and enforced with a vengeance: no new taxes. Not anymore. The state's new political landscape, scrambled by freshly drawn voting districts and new election rules, has given rise to a handful of GOP hopefuls proudly bucking the anti-tax orthodoxy. Their candidacies have the potential to end years of partisan gridlock here. The creation of more centrist districts and the end of the party primary system have given candidates — and special interests — an incentive to move...
  • Calguns Foundation Defends Innocent Gun Owner From Criminal Charges, Secures $35,800 Settlement

    05/19/2012 6:48:08 AM PDT · by marktwain · 11 replies ^ | 14 May, 2012 | CalGuns Foundation
    San Carlos, CA (May 14, 2012) – In an excellent conclusion to another federal civil rights lawsuit, The Calguns Foundation has secured a settlement agreement from defendants the City of Calexico, the Calexico Police Department, Chief of Police James Neujahr, and Calexico PD officer Mario Alcaraz. The case, Ian James Farias v. City of Calexico, et al., alleged that the defendants violated Mr. Farias’ Fourth Amendment rights by improperly arresting him and seizing his lawfully-possessed shotgun. The lawsuit also alleged that the Calexico PD failed to properly train their officers on firearms issues, leading to Mr. Farias’ arrest. Mr. Farias...
  • Police chief: Man who killed Gil acted in self-defense(CA)

    05/19/2012 6:15:45 AM PDT · by marktwain · 8 replies ^ | 17 May , 2012 | Tom Dunlap
    WATSONVILLE — Charges won’t be filed in the stabbing death of Brandon Gil in March, because investigators have determined that the suspect acted in self-defense. Watsonville Police Chief Manny Solano said Thursday that investigators determined that on March 31, after words were exchanged, Gil and another man, Ricardo Flores, attacked Frank Garcia first, outside El Miramar Restaurant and Bar on Main Street. Gil allegedly stabbed Frank Garcia in the upper body, and Garcia defended himself. “(Garcia) responded in fear of his life,” Solano said, adding that “this was a beef within the gang.” The three men are all associated with...
  • Frank Edward Ray, hero in Chowchilla school bus hijacking, dies at 91

    05/18/2012 10:43:45 PM PDT · by peggybac · 10 replies
    KC Star ^ | 5/18/12 | Elaine Woo
    Frank Edward Ray, the school bus driver hailed as a hero for helping to lead 26 children to safety after a bizarre kidnapping in the San Joaquin Valley town of Chowchilla, Calif., 36 years ago, has died. He was 91. Ray died Thursday in Chowchilla of complications of cirrhosis of the liver, said his granddaughter, Susan Ray. On the next-to-last day of summer school in July 1976, Ray was driving a busload of children home when he slowed down on tree-lined Avenue 21 for a white van blocking the road. Three masked men with guns jumped out and hijacked the...
  • Gov. mistakenly says Facebook invented in Calif.

    05/18/2012 8:56:00 PM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies
    AP via SFGate ^ | 5/18/12
    Apparently, California Gov. Jerry Brown forgot to rent "The Social Network." In an appearance Friday on "CBS This Morning," the California governor said his state is still the land of innovation and where Facebook was invented. He added: "Not in Texas, not in Arizona, not in Manhattan and certainly not, you know, under the White House or the Congress." . . .
  • Bay Area congressmembers call Safeway lawyer’s joke ‘sexist’

    05/18/2012 8:31:51 PM PDT · by SmithL · 30 replies
    Inside Bay Area ^ | 5/18/12 | Lisa Vorderbrueggen
    What’s good for Jay Leno, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert is apparently not good for corporate lawyers.A group of Bay Area congressmembers sent a stern letter to Pleasanton-based Safeway CEO Steve Burd admonishing the grocery giant for a joke its top lawyer reportedly made at the expense of Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi during a May 15 stockholder meeting.General Counsel Robert Gordon reportedly told a joke involving the Secretary of State and the House Minority Speaker from San Francisco, pigs and the Secret Service. Gosh, it already sounds funny. (Read the full narrative below.)Lighten up, people.If members of Congress start...
  • 19-term Dem Rep. Pete Stark rejects debates, isn’t campaigning; gets Obama endorsement

    05/18/2012 6:53:16 PM PDT · by SmithL · 15 replies
    SFGate: Politics Blog ^ | 5/18/12 | Carla Marinucci, Chronicle Political Writer
    Even as he faces his most competitive Congressional challenge in decades, 19-term East Bay Democratic Rep. Pete Stark, 80, has cut back on local campaign appearances –and turned down two upcoming debates sponsored by five area Chambers of Commerce and an Asian Pacific Islander group in his district. Stark’s retreat from public and campaign appearances in the East Bay in the midst of a heated campaign has been noticeable since he made headlines recently with some eyebrow-raising campaign gaffes at a Chronicle editorial board and at a public debate in Hayward. The California Congressional delegation’s longest serving member, who has...
  • Conservative Third-Party Dreams and Realities

    05/18/2012 4:46:32 PM PDT · by iowamark · 29 replies
    American Thinker ^ | April 29, 2012 | Daren Jonescu
    Tea Partiers and other constitutionally minded Americans for whom "Anyone but Obama" rings hollow, and who still harbor hopes of a third-party challenge to the GOP establishment, may find food for thought in a living example of such a conservative challenge -- namely, Canada. Americans would benefit from a careful evaluation of their neighbors' success. For decades, Canadian conservatives fought the same uphill battle as their U.S. counterparts, though lacking the constitutional armor with which to defend themselves. The nation moved continually to the left, and at the federal level, electoral politics was dominated by the increasingly socialistic Liberal Party....
  • Can liberals "wish" socialist utopia into existence?

    05/18/2012 11:57:17 AM PDT · by ReformationFan · 18 replies
    Renew America ^ | 5-17-12 | Chris Adamo
    California is in the midst of a monstrous debt crisis, the inescapable result of its leading Democrats having gambled on an annual deficit less than $9.2 billion (an immense sum in itself), but now facing a shortfall of nearly twice that amount. For the good of the country, anyone who is actually surprised at this development should be barred from voting in any election until they can pass a third-grade remedial math exam. The inevitability of the California crisis has long been glaringly obvious to all but the most ideologically blinded leftists. Unfortunately, the government of the Golden State is...
  • California unemployment has improved to Eurozone levels

    05/18/2012 11:12:08 AM PDT · by freedombiz · 1 replies
    Orange County Register ^ | 5-18-12 | Mark Landsbaum
    Today we awoke to the good news. California’s unemployment rate has plunged to (drum roll please) 10.9 percent! That’s as good as the unemployment rate in the euro zone, where people out of work also account for 10.9 percent of the working population, a new high for those folks. How bad is 10.9 percent? Well, the New York Times gives some perspective, saying the rate shows: “that the euro zone economy remains distressed.”
  • Judicial Watch Files Taxpayer Lawsuit against City of LA over Illegal Alien Sanctuary Policies

    05/18/2012 10:58:12 AM PDT · by kevcol · 7 replies
    Breitbart ^ | May 17, 2012 | Tom Fitton
    On Wednesday we filed a taxpayer lawsuit against the Los Angeles Police Department, Police Chief Charlie Beck and members of the Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners over Special Order 7. Under this policy police officers will no longer immediately impound the vehicles of unlicensed drivers for 30 days, as long as they meet certain conditions. It's no secret that this policy change was made to specifically accommodate illegal aliens. The problem is that Special Order 7 is unlawful. And, for this reason, Judicial Watch's lawsuit on behalf of Harold P. Sturgeon, filed May 8, 2012, in the Superior Court...