The Invisible San Diego Mayor: Kevin Faulconer

For my friends in San Diego, if you are looking for a political leader—do not look at the Mayors office.  Of course if you want to transfer $1.8 billion from the taxpayers to a billionaire, for a stadium for his play toy football team, Kevin Faulconer is your guy.  If you want a tax increase to finance an expansion of the convention center—turned down a few times by the voters—Faulconer will be happy to raise your taxes.

“Where is the mayor? Back in 2015, when VOSD and other media outlets sued the city for access to video of a contested police shooting, the mayor was absent from what became an important discussion about policing, transparency and fairness. Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman and District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis were the faces of the city’s position. When the city’s 911 system showed serious flaws that contributed to at least one death, the mayor didn’t say much.

On last year’s Measure C, an issue that dwarfed city politics for more than a year, the mayor held off from taking a position for so long that Scott Lewis and Andy Keatts devoted an entire segment of the podcast to “Faulconer Watch.”

Now, this financier of the rich, refuser to give leadership on key local issues, is thinking of running for Governor.  In shorthand, Faulconer is Schwarzenegger without the accent.  We need leaders that give us answers, not platitudes.

kevin-faulconer

The Invisible Mayor:  Kevin Faulconer

Sara Libby, Voice of San Diego,  3/26/17

Have you ever heard another person’s perspective on something and thought, “Were you watching the same show I was?” It’s that feeling of disconnect that happens when you interpret the same event or story so very differently from someone who experienced the same thing.

That’s how I’ve felt the last few months as political reporters from across the state have parachuted into town to relay the story of a man whom folks are desperate to see run for governor. That man is Mayor Kevin Faulconer. The Los Angeles Times has deemed Faulconer “the ideal prospect” and “the fair-haired favorite of California Republicans desperate for a serious candidate.” The Sacramento Bee says Republicans see Faulconer as “the only leader from within their withering ranks with enough crossover appeal to present a serious challenge to Democrats in sapphire-blue California.”

This week on the VOSD podcast, Republican Ron Nehring said Faulconer has the crossover appeal to succeed in a deeply blue state.

Here in San Diego, though, there’s a competing narrative — one that applies to virtually every major issue the city has faced over the last several years: Where is the mayor? Back in 2015, when VOSD and other media outlets sued the city for access to video of a contested police shooting, the mayor was absent from what became an important discussion about policing, transparency and fairness. Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman and District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis were the faces of the city’s position. When the city’s 911 system showed serious flaws that contributed to at least one death, the mayor didn’t say much.

On last year’s Measure C, an issue that dwarfed city politics for more than a year, the mayor held off from taking a position for so long that Scott Lewis and Andy Keatts devoted an entire segment of the podcast to “Faulconer Watch.”

This week alone, three important issues have come up that could greatly benefit from even a modicum of leadership. Though he has started to become more vocal on homelessness (after an outcry over his silence), this week Faulconer once again tried to please everyone, and instead of backing one of the solutions being offered, he backed all of them — including one of the very solutions he previously rejected. As the SoccerCity proposal to redevelop Qualcomm Stadium gathers signatures, the mayor hasn’t said where he stands on the plan. And on the volatile issue of short-term vacation rentals, something that’s been brewing for years and that saw a heated town hall on Friday, your guess is as good as mine as to where Faulconer lands or what he wants to see in terms of city policy.

It could be that Faulconer’s strategy of offending no one and creating as few waves as possible is entirely strategic. Certainly there are worse things you could say about a politician than that he’s well-liked. But at some point Faulconer needs to cash in on all that goodwill and put it toward something. Anything.

 

Dozens of Calif. Cities, Counties Are Increasing Taxes April 1: LIST

On April 1st the joke is on the citizens of dozens of California cities.  If you think it is expensive to live in California, in these communities you need to be as rich as Arnold to live a comfortable life.  I have a great friend that lives in the City of Los Angeles, where the sales tax is almost 10%–so she does her big shopping in Simi Valley—Ventura County—where the sales tax is under 8%.

“California residents and visitors alike will soon be paying more for everyday goods in dozens of local cities and counties. On April 1, the sales and use tax rate will be changing in 42 cities and across seven counties.

Though the statewide sales tax rate is currently 7.25 percent, the overall amount paid in many areas is higher due to special district taxes — which are the rates increasing in April. The increases are the result of voter-approved initiatives in those communities, according to the California State Board of Equalization (BOE).

No one in these communities should complain—you voted to increase your taxes and kill jobs.  You made sure your teens have fewer chances for an after school job.  You killed your future.

tax sign

Dozens of Calif. Cities, Counties Are Increasing Taxes April 1: LIST

Here are all the new rates consumers can expect to pay in sales and use taxes across the state.

By Renee Schiavone,Patch ,  3/26/17   

 

California residents and visitors alike will soon be paying more for everyday goods in dozens of local cities and counties. On April 1, the sales and use tax rate will be changing in 42 cities and across seven counties.

Though the statewide sales tax rate is currently 7.25 percent, the overall amount paid in many areas is higher due to special district taxes — which are the rates increasing in April. The increases are the result of voter-approved initiatives in those communities, according to the California State Board of Equalization (BOE).

We’ve listed all the changes in the table and bullet points below. Keep in mind that the rates for the cities listed below apply only within the indicated city limits, while the countywide changes apply to all cities and unincorporated areas in those counties.

If your community isn’t listed below, then the tax rate is not increasing. But if you’re curious as to what the tax rate in your area is, head to the BOE website at boe.ca.gov and click on the Find a Tax Rate by Address link to find the tax rate for a specific address. The new tax rates will be available on this website on April 1. You may also call the BOE Customer Service Center at 1-800-400-7115 on weekdays, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Cities with New Tax Rates Old Rate New Rate
Belmont (San Mateo County) 8.75% 9.25%
Chula Vista (San Diego County) 7.75% 8.25%
Clearlake (Lake County) 7.75% 8.75%
Del Mar (San Diego County) 7.75% 8.75%
Downey (Los Angeles County) 8.75% 9.25%
East Palo Alto (San Mateo County) 8.75% 9.25%
El Centro (Imperial County) 7.75% 8.25%
Fairfax (Marin County) 8.75% 9.00%
Fortuna (Humboldt County) 7.75% 8.50%
Fountain Valley (Orange County) 7.75% 8.75%
Hemet (Riverside County) 7.75% 8.75%
Indio (Riverside County) 7.75% 8.75%
Isleton (Sacramento County) 8.25% 8.75%
La Palma (Orange County) 7.75% 8.75%
La Quinta (Riverside County) 7.75% 8.75%
Lakeport (Lake County) 7.75% 8.75%
Loomis (Placer County) 7.25% 7.50%
Lynwood (Los Angeles County) 8.75% 9.75%
Madera (Madera County) 7.75% 8.25%
Martinez (Contra Costa County) 8.25% 8.75%
Menifee (Riverside County) 7.75% 8.75%
Newark (Alameda County) 9.25% 9.75%
Orland (Glenn County) 7.25% 7.75%
Placerville (El Dorado County) 7.75% 8.25%
Pleasant Hill (Contra Costa County) 8.25% 8.75%
Ridgecrest (Kern County) 8.00% 8.25%
Riverside (Riverside County) 7.75% 8.75%
Santa Monica (Los Angeles County) 9.25% 9.75%
Santa Paula (Ventura County) 7.25% 8.25%
St. Helena (Napa County) 7.75% 8.25%
Stockton (San Joaquin County) 8.75% 9.00%
Suisun City (Solano County) 7.38% 8.38%
Temecula (Riverside County) 7.75% 8.75%
Tracy (San Joaquin County) 7.75% 8.25%
Ukiah (Mendocino County) 7.88% 8.38%
Ventura (Ventura County) 7.25% 7.75%
Visalia (Tulare County) 8.00% 8.50%
Wasco (Kern County) 7.25% 8.25%
West Sacramento (Yolo County) 7.75% 8.00%
Westminster (Orange County) 7.75% 8.75%
Yreka (Siskiyou County) 7.25% 7.75%
Yucca Valley (San Bernardino County) 7.75% 8.75%

The following counties are also getting new tax rates, as follows. (The cities listed below each county already have existing district taxes; their rates will also increase)

  • Merced County (applies to all unincorporated areas and cities including Dos Palos and Livingston): from 7.25% to 7.75%
    • Atwater: from 7.75% to 8.25%
    • Gustine: from 7.75% to 8.25%
    • Los Banos: from 7.75% to 8.25%
    • Merced: from 7.75% to 8.25%
  • Monterey County (applies to all cities and unincorporated areas): from 7.375% to 7.75%
    • Carmel-by-the-Sea: from 8.375% to 8.75%
    • Del Rey Oaks: from 8.875% to 9.25%
    • Gonzales: from 7.875% to 8.25%
    • Greenfield: from 9.125% to 9.50%
    • King City: from 7.875% to 8.25%
    • Marina: from 8.375% to 8.75%
    • Monterey: from 8.375% to 8.75%
    • Pacific Grove: from 8.375% to 8.75%
    • Salinas: from 8.875% to 9.25%
    • Sand City: from 8.375% to 8.75%
    • Seaside: from 8.375% to 8.75%
    • Soledad: from 8.375% to 8.75%
  • Nevada County (applies to all cities and unincorporated areas): from 7.375% to 7.50%
    • Grass Valley: from 7.875% to 8.00%
    • Nevada City: from 8.25% to 8.75%
    • Truckee: from 8.125% to 8.25%
  • Santa Clara County (applies to all unincorporated areas and cities including Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Los Gatos, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Mountain View, Palo Alto, Santa Clara, Saratoga, and Sunnyvale): from 8.50% to 9.00%
    • Campbell: from 8.75% to 9.25%
    • San Jose: from 8.75% to 9.25%
  • Santa Cruz County (applies to all cities and unincorporated areas): from 8.00% to 8.50%
    • Capitola: from 8.50% to 9.00%
    • Santa Cruz: from 8.50% to 9.00%
    • Scotts Valley: from 8.50% to 9.00%
    • Watsonville: from 8.75% to 9.25%
  • Sonoma County (applies to all unincorporated areas and cities including Cloverdale, Petaluma, and Windsor): from 8.00% to 8.125%
    • Cotati: from 9.00% to 9.125%
    • Healdsburg: from 8.50% to 8.625%
    • Rohnert Park: from 8.50% to 8.625%
    • Santa Rosa: from 8.50% to 8.625%
    • Sebastopol: from 8.75% to 8.875%
    • Sonoma: from 8.50% to 8.625%
  • Stanislaus County (applies to all unincorporated areas and cities including Hughson, Modesto, Newman, Patterson, Riverbank, Turlock, and Waterford): from 7.375% to 7.875%
    • Ceres: from 7.875% to 8.375%
    • Oakdale: 7.875%

 

School Board NEEDS to Keep Kids in Underperforming Schools—for the $$

Simple question, given a choice, which school district would you send your child:

“Oak Park High School, a ninth-through-12th-grade campus of about 1,500 students, features robotics and computer animation courses, offers 67 different extracurricular clubs and has a 99 percent graduation rate. It was named among the Top 10 high schools in California last year by Newsweek magazine.

Oak Park Unified students scored 78 percent out of 100 on both math and English tests last year, compared to SVUSD’s scores of 50 percent on math and 51 percent on English.”

Now some districts want to end schools of choice.  If they do, they will get very few of the fleeing students back.  Parents will move to the better districts or will send their children to private schools or home school.  You should know it is a one hour round trip from Simi Valley to Oak Park schools.  Parents are willing to do that for a better education.  Money spent to lobbying against parental choice could be used to improve the quality of education.  What do you think?

560px-School-education-learning-1750587-h

Board formally opposes District of Choice bill

By Hector Gonzalez, Simi Valley Acorn,  3/24/17

A program that makes it easier for parents to pull their children out of low-performing schools and enroll them in districts outside their neighborhoods is to blame for a significant drop in Simi Valley Unified School District enrollment over the years, according to a resolution approved Tuesday.

Without discussion, school board members unanimously approved the document opposing the state’s District of Choice program, which allows students to transfer to nearby districts that have deemed themselves DOCs without having to seek permission from their home districts.

Less than 25 miles from SVUSD is Oak Park Unified School District in Oak Park, which enrolls the second-largest number of District of Choice students in the state, after Walnut Valley Unified in Walnut.

“The second-largest District of Choice in California . . . draws away families that would otherwise aid us in maintaining greater academic, economic and ethnic diversity in our SVUSD student population,” the resolution states.

In the past, school board members have blamed enrollment declines for teacher layoffs and the closures of Simi Elementary School in 2014 and Abraham Lincoln and Justin elementary schools in 2015. From a peak of 21,717 students in the 2003- 04 school year, enrollment had fallen to about 17,360 students in 2015-16.

A provision in the 1993 law phases out the District of Choice program at the end of this school year, on July 1. But in January, Assembly member Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks) introduced AB 185, co-authored by Assembly member Patrick O’Donnell (D-Long Beach), which, if passed, would extend District of Choice through 2023. Oak Park falls under Irwin’s 44th Assembly District.

Along with her bill, Irwin has a petition on her website in support of the program and OPUSD, which will lose millions in funding if District of Choice is allowed to lapse.

“As the second-largest District of Choice in the state, Oak Park Unified School District serves as a model of learning by providing students with creative pathways to excel in a variety of courses,” the petition reads.

“This is exactly how we should be promoting learning and getting students excited about education.”

Committed to opposition

According to the resolution passed in Simi Valley this week, “SVUSD is willing to participate in advocacy against legislation that proposes to extend DOC.”

“SVUSD intends to join forces with other school districts facing this challenge in an effort to defeat any proposed DOC legislation,” the resolution states.

Superintendent Jason Peplinski said he plans to take the resolution with him when he and Associate Superintendent of Business and Finance Ron Todo fly to Sacramento this week for two days of meetings with education officials and legislators.

“This will be a nice thing to be able to bring along as part of our evidence of our district’s commitment to really work on reforms in this area,” Peplinski told board members Tuesday.

A review in February 2016 by the state Legislative Analyst’s Office concluded District of Choice was working as intended by giving parents the option of moving their children to better-performing schools and increasing competition among districts.

About 10,000 students are enrolled in 47 Districts of Choice around the state.

But critics, including the California School Boards Associations and the ACLU, blame District of Choice for declining enrollment in smaller districts and in schools in low-income neighborhoods as students transfer to DOCs with smaller class sizes and higher test scores.

That’s because most of the money state and federal governments provide for education in the classroom is essentially attached to students, following them into whatever school they show up for most of the day.

For example, transfer students bring in an extra $5.2 million a year to Oak Park Unified, where 37 percent of the district’s 4,543 students came from other districts in 2014- 15, according to the legislative analyst’s evaluation.

This school year, about 400 students who otherwise would be attending Simi Valley schools are enrolled in Oak Park Unified, said Cliff Moore, a consultant for the Oak Park district.

Oak Park High School, a ninth-through-12th-grade campus of about 1,500 students, features robotics and computer animation courses, offers 67 different extracurricular clubs and has a 99 percent graduation rate. It was named among the Top 10 high schools in California last year by Newsweek magazine.

Oak Park Unified students scored 78 percent out of 100 on both math and English tests last year, compared to SVUSD’s scores of 50 percent on math and 51 percent on English.

Without naming Oak Park Unified specifically, SVUSD’s resolution points to that district’s proximity to Simi Valley for drawing away families, leading to enrollment declines and “the loss of SVUSD teaching staff over the decades.”

 

Confused Guv Brown: We Need More Crime in California—Will Release 1000’s More Vio9lent Criminals to YOUR Community

Arnold started the process, and Brown completed it, to release 50,000 criminals to our streets—and crime grew.  Crime has spiraled due to Prop. 47, allowing crooks to steal under $950 worth of good from your car for the price of a ticket—if they even show up.  Pro. 57 made sure rapists get only a couple of years in jail.  Now. Jerry, who is protecting illegal aliens that murder, rape, steal and commit numerous other crimes, wants more crime for innocent Californians.

“He says about 1,200 nonviolent offenders will be eligible for the credits this year. The state plans to reclassify “violent” offenders as “nonviolent” if they have already served their sentences for the “violent” crimes and are currently serving time for “nonviolent” offenses.

“This program would expand eligibility to all inmates in our system with the exclusion of condemned inmates and inmates that are serving a life without the possibility of parole sentence,” says Kernan.

You heard him—by government fiat they are going to redefine violent crimes by declaring them NON-violent—in the first year, 1200 violent criminals will be put on the streets.  AP estimates that in total 9500 violent criminals will be on your block!  Ready to fight crime?

jerry brown legis

Officials Release New Rules That Could Reduce Prison Time For Some Inmates

Jonathan Ayestas, Capitol Radio,  3/24/17

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation announced new regulations Friday that would allow more prisoners to reduce their sentences. Inmates who participate in certain programs will be eligible for good conduct credits.

Scott Kernan is the CDCR Secretary. He says the regulations will help keep the prison system from reaching capacity.

“We need to get the population reductions, we need the inmates to participate in these programs to make our system work and avoid a court-ordered release of offenders,” says Kernan.

Kernan says the system is about 1,500 inmates shy of capacity.

He says about 1,200 nonviolent offenders will be eligible for the credits this year. The state plans to reclassify “violent” offenders as “nonviolent” if they have already served their sentences for the “violent” crimes and are currently serving time for “nonviolent” offenses.

“This program would expand eligibility to all inmates in our system with the exclusion of condemned inmates and inmates that are serving a life without the possibility of parole sentence,” says Kernan.

The department will reclassify inmates beginning in June. The changes could result in the release of 520 inmates this year.

 

Janet Napolitano is New California Secretary of State: Makes Foreign Policy Instead of Protecting UC Students From Fascists on Campus.

The Chancellor of the University of California system is no longer an educator (never was).  Now under President Jerry Brown, Janet Napolitano is the Secretary of State, dealing with diplomacy, while UC campuses have ended the 1st Amendment, free speech and allows professors to bully students—and allow students to be violent with those wishing to express support for the U.S. Constitution.

“University of California system President Janet Napolitano will be taking a three-day trip to Mexico next week to “strengthen ties” with the country as a rebuke of Trump administration policies.

UC spokesperson Dianne Klein told the Associated Press that Napolitano’s trip is intended to “send a very strong and loud message…that we believe it is wrong to isolate and antagonize this important neighbor.”

“We believe it is wrong to isolate and antagonize this important neighbor.”

So Napolitano is going to Mexico to apologize for President Trumps’ effort to enforce our immigration laws.  Napolitano is a lawless individual, she should not by trusted to do more than fill taco shells—certainly, never allowed to work the cash register.

Janet Napolitano

UC system prez fears Trump will ‘isolate and antagonize’ Mexico

Amber Athey, Campus Reform,  3/24/17

  University of California system President Janet Napolitano will be taking a three-day trip to Mexico next week to “strengthen ties” with the country as a rebuke of Trump administration policies.

  A UC spokesperson said Napolitano’s trip is intended to “send a very strong and loud message…that we believe it is wrong to isolate and antagonize this important neighbor.”

University of California system President Janet Napolitano will be taking a three-day trip to Mexico next week to “strengthen ties” with the country as a rebuke of Trump administration policies.

UC spokesperson Dianne Klein told the Associated Press that Napolitano’s trip is intended to “send a very strong and loud message…that we believe it is wrong to isolate and antagonize this important neighbor.”

“We believe it is wrong to isolate and antagonize this important neighbor.”

Klein also remarked that it is currently a “very propitious time to strengthen ties,” citing the Trump administration’s proposed border wall, as well as a preliminary budget proposal released last week that envisions cuts to a variety of research programs, as policies liable to irk Mexico.

The trip is part of the UC-Mexico Initiative that Napolitano launched in 2014, which facilitates academic research and programming between the UC system and institutions in Mexico. Napolitano kicked off the initiative with a two-day trip to Mexico, but no mention was made at the time of any concerns regarding U.S.-Mexico relations.

Napolitano told The Los Angeles Times that she plans to build on this partnership during her trip by reassuring Mexico that the collaboration will continue despite Trump’s plans to build a border wall, increase immigration enforcement, and cut federal research funding, declaring that “Regardless of what is happening federally, the University of California remains open to academic partnerships with Mexico.”

In addition to collaborating on funding research projects and developing programs, the UC-Mexico Initiative also assists students who travel between the United States and Mexico.

Patricia Gándara, an education professor at UCLA, said the group’s efforts have recently become more focused on students whose parents brought them back to Mexico after being deported, losing work, or simply becoming “freaked out about Trump.”

According to Napolitano’s itinerary, she will visit with the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, the US-Mexico Chamber of Commerce, and Mexican students and business leaders.

 

Are the Climate Change People Right?

If I want to point to someone that has no concept of truth, I easily point to Al Gore.  Then you have the academics, that take money from government, to return studies that Gore would approve and Obama could point to in his efforts to kill the economy and jobs.

“Climate Change Deniers – That is one of the statements I love to hear from supporters. It is itself an ad hominem attack since there really are not any of consequence. As previously discussed, the climate is always changing so the name in itself is quite silly. When discussing this with supporters I always ask why they keep using that term. The Climatologists that I have read or interviewed have been consistent. They state the climate is changing and add that man has some portion of that effect, but we just cannot prove the models that are used by climate change supporters to back up their claims of projecting out decades from now and man’s effect on the climate.

One would think if legitimate climate scientists come forth and state they cannot verify the models then others would question the models. But that is a no.

Free speech?  Not on our campuses or in the halls of government.  You are called a “climate denier”.  In fact Al Gore and his friends are the climate deniers—and they are proud of their scam.  They are rich because of the gullibility of the public and the greed of academics.

220px-Al_Gore

Are the Climate Change People Right?

Bruce Bialosky, Townhall, 3/26/17

The Environmental Community is apoplectic over Scott Pruitt becoming the head of the EPA and the proposed Trump budget cuts. They tell us 97 percent of all scientists believe that climate change is real. And the point is? A few years back I read a rather long list of these scientists and most of them had no tie to climate science. This was one of the major issues of the Women’s March the day after President Trump’s Inauguration.

Let’s look at some of the facts and ask some questions:

  1. Climate Change Deniers – That is one of the statements I love to hear from supporters. It is itself an ad hominem attack since there really are not any of consequence. As previously discussed, the climate is always changing so the name in itself is quite silly. When discussing this with supporters I always ask why they keep using that term. The Climatologists that I have read or interviewed have been consistent. They state the climate is changing and add that man has some portion of that effect, but we just cannot prove the models that are used by climate change supporters to back up their claims of projecting out decades from now and man’s effect on the climate.

One would think if legitimate climate scientists come forth and state they cannot verify the models then others would question the models. But that is a no.

  1. Global Warming vs. Climate Change – When all this attention started to happen, it was referred to as “global warming.” Now it is “climate change.” Why the change in nomenclature? Try to get a coherent answer from supporters. That is not possible. I think it was because they were being brutalized because there had been a cooling trend from 1940 through the mid-70s.
  2. Discrediting Opponents – One of the things that brings into question the creditability of the supporters of this movement is their need to denigrate the people who express a non-conforming opinion. It starts with point one above, but there are multiple cases of scientists who varied from the orthodoxy who were attacked and belittled:

Lennart Bengtsson, a Swedish Meteorologist, came out and questioned Global Warming in 2014. Fifteen days after he joined the Global Warming Policy Foundation he quit because he was being harassed. Bengtsson stated he had come under “an enormous group pressure. I see no limit and end to what will happen. It is a situation that reminds me about the time of McCarthy. I would never have expecting anything similar in such an original peaceful community as meteorology. Apparently it has been transformed in recent years. I had not expecting such an enormous world-wide pressure put at me from a community that I have been close to all my active life.”

Judith Curry is an American climatologist and former chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She recently quit her position fed up with the tribal nature of the climate-science community and the stonewalling over the release of data and its analysis for independent review.

This is just two examples, but if the strength of your case is there then why would you need to take actions against people like these to suppress legitimate questioning or peer review.

  1. Settled Science – Yes, gravity is settled science; this is not. The Theory of Relativity was something we lived with all our lives. Who does not know Einstein’s theory? We accepted it as is, but it was just recently proven. The entire idea of using this term questions the scientific basis of the arguments being made and is just another way to browbeat the opponents.
  2. Funding Sources – The supporters frequently question the veracity of the opponents because of their funding sources. The implication is that the scientists supporting the climate change orthodoxy are pure of heart and wallet. That could not be any further from the truth. They do their own back flips to receive funding and the creditability of their sources are just as questionable as the ones who don’t support the orthodoxy.
  3. Hottest Years on Record – I am sure you recently heard that 2016 was the hottest year on record. They will cite 16 of the 17 warmest years have been in this century. But did you know that the survey they cite goes back a total of 136 years. And the earth is 4.5 billion years old. I don’t know about you, but I really don’t trust the temperature measurements done in the 19th century. In fact, I trust them very little until after 1950. Stating these are the hottest years on record means exactly what? And did you know that the increase last year, which was affected by El Nino, was .04 degrees Celsius. That means if everything continued on with similar increases it would take 25 years to increase one degree.
  4. The Climate Models – The scientists who question the orthodoxy of climate change often cite they cannot prove the models that are used by the supporters. But you don’t even need to be a famous climatologist to question this. Do you believe that these people can predict the weather at the end of this century – 83 years from now? La Nina was supposed to hit in Southern California in 2016. It appears to have shown up this year. They cannot even get that right. Yet they want to significantly reorient the energy sources in our society. And what happens 83 years from now if they are wrong – do they just say “sorry”?
  5. Rigged Numbers – The recent revelation by a whistleblower that the head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) provided rigged numbers to the people behind the Paris Accord shocked everyone except for those who blindly believe all regarding climate change. This validated that the supporters have ulterior motives that drive their interests beyond good science.

This isn’t to say that man has not had some effect on the atmosphere or that we are not going through a period of global warming. These are just some points to bring in to question the militant orthodoxy of the current climate change universe.

 

Living in the ICE age: SF’s undocumented prepare for interactions with immigration authorities

There is an organization in San Fran that is teaching rapists and murderers how to protect themselves from government agents and law enforcement’s.  They are learning their “rights”, how to get an attorney and how taxpayers will finance their cases.  I should mention if you are an American born criminals, you are not allowed to attend—this is only for criminals from foreign countries—usually called illegal aliens.

“Melgarejo, an organizer with a Latino activism group in the Mission called PODER, has been busy preparing undocumented immigrants for an encounter with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials since President Donald Trump signed an executive order heightening deportation efforts on Jan. 25.

“I don’t want to scare you,” Melgarejo told the audience in Spanish. “But so you know, this is something we will see more now.”

On a recent Tuesday, she was at Mission High teaching nearly 150 people about their rights. Whether eating in a restaurant, resting at home or sitting at a bus stop on Mission Street when confronted by ICE, Melgarejo said undocumented immigrants should remain silent and refrain from signing anything.”

When ICE puts them up there is only one question.  When the ICE deportation hearings are held there is only one question.  Simple question?  Where are the documents proving you are here legally?  After a couple of minutes the hearing should end—and if no documents, within the hour on a bus, train or plane back to your native land.  Then you can fight your case from your real home.

ICE 2

Living in the ICE age: SF’s undocumented prepare for interactions with immigration authorities

By Michael Barba, SF Examiner,  3/26/17

Bang, bang, bang!

Bang, bang, bang!

Laura Melgarejo pounded on a cafeteria table at Mission High School, pretending an immigration agent was knocking on the front door of a home.

“La migra, la migra!” she shouted, the Spanish word for “immigration,” as a crowd of mostly women and children looked to her for answers on how to respond.

Melgarejo, an organizer with a Latino activism group in the Mission called PODER, has been busy preparing undocumented immigrants for an encounter with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials since President Donald Trump signed an executive order heightening deportation efforts on Jan. 25.

“I don’t want to scare you,” Melgarejo told the audience in Spanish. “But so you know, this is something we will see more now.”

On a recent Tuesday, she was at Mission High teaching nearly 150 people about their rights. Whether eating in a restaurant, resting at home or sitting at a bus stop on Mission Street when confronted by ICE, Melgarejo said undocumented immigrants should remain silent and refrain from signing anything.

“Whatever you do, you can faint, but don’t speak,” Melgarejo said. “Everything you say is going to be used against you.”

Mission High is home to the Migrant Education Program, a federal program in the San Francisco Unified School District that supports the children of farmworkers at schools around the district.

There are about 300 children in the program this year. Many of the children have papers because they were born in the U.S., but their parents are mostly undocumented, according to educators in the program.

Melgarejo is teaching undocumented immigrants their rights at a time of widespread fear for undocumented immigrants, who Trump characterized as criminals during his presidential campaign.

Though the president has said he plans to target undocumented immigrants who are dangerous felons for deportation, others have been caught in the web.

Jessica Chavez, who has two children in the Migrant Education Program, said this is unfair for undocumented immigrants like herself.

“I would like to take my children to go to Disneyland, but I am scared to take them and I want them to explore but I am scared of traveling,” Chavez said in Spanish, though that is not her real name. “My fear is that there will be immigration stops along the way.”

Chavez is a soccer mom. She volunteers at her children’s school, is involved in her community and even went door-to-door to campaign for a local ballot measure in November.

“The president generalizes that all immigrants are criminals, when really there are some but it doesn’t pertain to all immigrants,” Chavez said. “What the president is saying is not who I am. There are a lot of people like me.”

Chavez said she is scared. She hiked through the mountains without any family by her side to get to San Francisco 13 years ago, and met her husband here. If she is deported back to Mexico, she will have to find someone to take care of her children.

“This is my son’s country,” she said.

In cases like these, the Consulate of Mexico in San Francisco is recommending that undocumented immigrants apply for their children to have dual-citizenship in Mexico.

Parents who are afraid of deportation should also find a legal guardian for their child in the U.S., said Julio Huerta, a representative of the Consulate of Mexico in San Francisco.

Huerta said the consulate has “strengthened” its outreach efforts since Trump’s election. He has offered this advice to immigrants around the Bay Area almost every day in recent weeks, visiting schools and community centers where fearful parents have gathered.

“We’re working harder,” Huerta said.

Huerta said the consulate has also beefed up its legal resources.

City officials also decided to spend additional money next fiscal year for nonprofits to provide more legal advice to undocumented immigrants and for attorneys from the Public Defender’s Office to work deportation cases.

“It’s kind of a similar effort,” Huerta said of the consulate’s extra resources. “Our duty as consulate is to look after our people and one of those areas we are going to help them with is with legal advice, legal information and with lawyers.”

The consulate works with a network of lawyers who sometimes work pro-bono in cases including deportation proceedings, Huerta said, though he could not confirm how many.

The Consulate of Guatemala in San Francisco is also offering advice to its citizens in The City. Consul General Patricia Lavagnino said those without papers should get their assets in order as soon as possible.

“It’s like a tornado,” Lavagnino said, speaking to parents at Mission High. “What would you do if a tornado was approaching. You would protect yourself. You would protect your valuables. It’s the same thing here. Pretend a big tornado is coming.”

“Decline to State” may pass Republicans in California Very Soon

Congratulations to the California Republican Party and its strategy NOT to register voters.  In 2015-16 the Party raised $19 million.  For that we lost three incumbent Assembly seats and a GOP Senate seat.  In the 2011-12 election cycle the CRPO went one million in debt, registered lots of voters—and WON two Assembly seats.  Which results do you want–$19 million and lose four seats or go in debt by a million and GAIN two seats.

“While Democrats are the state’s largest party with 8,700,440 or 44.8 percent of the total registered, Republicans hold a slim lead over “no party preference” at 5,027,714 or 25.9 percent to the 4,762,212 or 24.5 percent of those with no party preference. That translates into a lead for the GOP of 265,502 voters.”

Yet, without any competition those that lost the Legislature to a super majority of Democrats, won election and re-election—without any competition.  What do you make of that?

Photo courtesy of DonkeyHotey, flickr

Photo courtesy of DonkeyHotey, flickr

No party may pass Republicans in California

Central Valley Business Times,  3/24/17

 

  • Record voter registration
  • “It is clear that Californians are engaged”

Californians who have registered to vote without declaring a political party are almost the state’s second largest political “party,” according to the latest voter registration figures.

While Democrats are the state’s largest party with 8,700,440 or 44.8 percent of the total registered, Republicans hold a slim lead over “no party preference” at 5,027,714 or 25.9 percent to the 4,762,212 or 24.5 percent of those with no party preference. That translates into a lead for the GOP of 265,502 voters.

Secretary of State Alex Padilla says a record 19,432,609 Californians are registered to vote, which is 77.92 percent of eligible Californians. The report reflects registration data through February 10.

“Voter registration in California continues to climb, following a historic 2016 election year, where a record 14.6 million Californians cast ballots in the November General Election. Typically voter registration declines after an election,” says Mr. Padilla. “It is clear that Californians are engaged and want to be active participants in our democracy.”

Since the last odd-numbered year report of voter registration in February 2015:

  • The total voter registration in the state increased from 17,717,936 to 19,432,609.
  • The percentage of eligible Californians who are registered to vote increased from 72.7 percent to 77.9 percent.
  • The percentage of voters who have no party preference increased from 23.6 percent to 24.5 percent.
  • The percentage of voters registered with a qualified political party decreased from 75.6 percent to 74.9 percent.
  • The percentage of voters registered with the Democratic Party increased from 43.2 percent to 44.8 percent.
  • The percentage of voters registered with the Republican Party decreased from 28 percent to 25.9 percent.

 

Democrats Demagogue Women For Votes/Lie to Women

Women in Santa Barbara had a rally and march to demand equal rights for women.  Those at the rally—and those running the rally obviously have an IQ of UNDER room temperature.  Do they not know that the Mayor of Santa Barbara is a women?  The Member of Congress for the past 20 years was a women.  The TWO U.S. Senators from California are women.  The Leader of the Democrats in the House of Representatives is a congresswoman from San Fran. These folks were punking the media and public with this rally.

The rally was a bad joke from the 1950’s—no explanation for the facts—just an opportunity to yell and scream.  These women need emotional help and an opportunity to read the Santa Barbara News- Press (opps that is owned by a woman).  Silly folks.

“Passing the ERA will send a strong message that the Constitution has zero tolerance for discrimination under the law, said Catherine Swysen, president of the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee, the organizer of Sunday’s march.

“We must stand together and speak out for equality for all so that we do not go backward but instead, even in these challenging times, move forward to create an inclusive society,” she said.

“As is evident in this political climate, women’s rights are under attack. The ERA would help ensure there is no discrimination in the area of health care, employment (and) equal pay.”

Actually the equal rights amendment has already passed and IS law—it is the U.S. Constitution, something the Democrat Party refuses to recognize as law.

Democrat Donkey

Hundreds Join Santa Barbara Rally and March for Equal Rights Amendment

Noozehawk, 3/27/17

Speakers issue renewed call for ratification; Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee organizers says effort includes lesbian, transgender women’s rights

With fists and signs in the air, an estimated 250 people converged on Santa Barbara’s De la Guerra Plaza on Sunday afternoon, calling for equality for all and encouraging politicians to do their part in getting the Equal Rights Amendment added to the Constitution.

The downtown plaza was filled with handmade posters reading “Girls just want to have equal rights,” “Respect us” and “ERA now!”

Some in the crowd wore floppy pink “pussyhats” with cat ears that have become a symbol of resistance to President Donald Trump.

Congress passed the Equal Rights Amendment in 1972 and sent it to the states for ratification. The amendment — which simply states “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex” — was ratified by the California Legislature and those of 34 other states, but fell three states short of the 38 required for approval.

The ratification deadline was later extended and, last week, Nevada became the 36th state to approve it.

Passing the ERA will send a strong message that the Constitution has zero tolerance for discrimination under the law, said Catherine Swysen, president of the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee, the organizer of Sunday’s march.

“We must stand together and speak out for equality for all so that we do not go backward but instead, even in these challenging times, move forward to create an inclusive society,” she said.

“As is evident in this political climate, women’s rights are under attack. The ERA would help ensure there is no discrimination in the area of health care, employment (and) equal pay.”

Swysen said the ERA’s passage would guarantee that rights affirmed by the Constitution are equally held by all, regardless of their gender.

“It would provide a fundamental legal remedy against sex discrimination for both women and men,” she said.

Rep. Salud Carbajal, D-Santa Barbara, told the crowd it is crucial to pass the ERA “to prevent one of the most subtle yet pervasive types of discrimination in our society — discrimination against women. The first step to justice for women in our country begins with the ERA to enforce gender equality.”

Carbajal said he is a “proud co-sponsor” of the ERA.

“Every citizen in this country deserves equal rights treatment under the law regardless of race, financial status and gender,” he said. “This is a simple statement but one that our government shamefully refuses to recognize.”

Assemblywoman Monique Limón, D-Santa Barbara, said women have the right to succeed and follow a career that is meaningful and important.

“The ERA ensures that every woman has the ability to pursue goals and dreams,” she said. “In California, we are the light of the nation, but we still have work to do.”

Swysen said the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee is devoted to taking social action against discrimination based on gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, age or ability, as well as endorsing the candidacies of women and men who support and promote a feminist agenda.

In championing full equality for women, she added, the organization is dedicated to the inclusiveness of lesbian rights and transgender women’s rights as a fundamental component of that advocacy.

“One of our core values is inclusiveness and respect for all,” Swysen said. “We strive to foster respect and understanding of lesbians’ sexual orientation and culture, as well as respect and understanding of transgender women’s gender identity, and we are committed to work for their full equal rights.”

The event featured guest speakers and appearances from state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara; Santa Barbara County Second District Supervisor Janet Wolf; Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider and Council members Gregg Hart and Cathy Murillo; Santa Barbara Unified School District trustee Wendy Sims-Moten; former county Supervisor Susan Rose, founder and former president of the Santa Barbara Women’s Political Committee; SBWPC board member Andria Martinez Cohen; League of Women Voters of Santa Barbara co-president Lindsey Baker; Black Lives Matter movement speaker Akilah Simone Baker; representatives from Planned Parenthood California Central Coast; a reading from Santa Barbara poet laureate Sojourner Kincaid Rolle; and a performance by World Dance for Humanity.

The South Coast residents marched down State Street after the speeches.

“At a time when women’s rights are under attack, we march to send a loud and clear message that equality between women and men is a fundamental human civil right which must be enshrined in our Constitution,” Swysen said.

“I’m amazed that we are still talking about this. Efforts are being made every day to roll back women’s rights.”

San Fran UNIONIZED Cab Company is Bankrupt

The steel industry, auto makers and even Hollywood were forced to either close or move to Free State or other nations for the same reason.  The cost of union extortion and blackmail was too high.  Now around the nation Uber and Lyft, using free drivers, folks not paying bribes to a union in order to work, are cutting deeply into the customer base of Yellow Cab and other firms run by the unions.

“In the end, Yellow Cab may be sold for less than half the price of the average San Francisco home: $400,000. If the purchase is approved by the court, the sale will become final April 30 and Citywide would assume Yellow Cab’s millions of dollars of debt.

Yellow Cab’s assets totaled $8 million, and its liabilities totaled $26 million, according to its bankruptcy filings.

“The cabs will continue to operate as Yellow cabs,” Singer said. “Citywide’s management should at this time be familiarizing itself with Yellow operations in the coming weeks in order to have a smooth transition.”

Yes, it will be sold.  Those buying it might be really buying tax credits for the losses.

The trend is clear, folks trust Uber and Lyft—when given a choice consumers want the drivers to be free of bribe paying.

uber

Bankrupt SF Yellow Cab up for sale

By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez, SF Examiner,  3/27/17

San Francisco’s oldest cab company is for sale.

Yellow Cab Co-Op’s bankruptcy trustee put the flailing cab company up for bid and has one prospective buyer — its smaller rival Citywide Taxi, according to bankruptcy court documents.

“The good news is the famous yellow scheme will continue to traverse San Francisco streets,” said Sam Singer, a spokesperson-at-large representing Yellow Cab’s trustee, Randy Sugarman, who manages Yellow Cab’s bankruptcy proceedings with the United States Bankruptcy Court, Northern District.

In the end, Yellow Cab may be sold for less than half the price of the average San Francisco home: $400,000. If the purchase is approved by the court, the sale will become final April 30 and Citywide would assume Yellow Cab’s millions of dollars of debt.

Yellow Cab’s assets totaled $8 million, and its liabilities totaled $26 million, according to its bankruptcy filings.

“The cabs will continue to operate as Yellow cabs,” Singer said. “Citywide’s management should at this time be familiarizing itself with Yellow operations in the coming weeks in order to have a smooth transition.”

That may come as good news to those who feared Yellow Cab would go the way of the Dodo bird after it declared bankruptcy in January 2016, which was first reported by the San Francisco Examiner.

That turmoil came in the midst of a shifting for-hire cab industry, as the rise of tech-infused ride-hails Uber and Lyft upend taxi companies nationwide.

While Yellow Cab struggled to fill shifts, Uber was reportedly valued at $68 billion.

But Singer’s assertion that Yellow Cab will keep on running also assumes Citywide will be the approved purchaser. The April 7 hearing date does not guarantee that purchase, however, because the hearing is also an auction.

While that means subsequent bids from other cab companies could disrupt Citywide’s purchase plans, no other cab companies have stepped forward to bid on Yellow Cab, yet.

Citywide did not respond to requests for comment.

John Lazar, owner of the historic Luxor Cab Company, doesn’t think Citywide’s owner Chris Sweis would fold Yellow into Citywide. Likely, he said, it would be the reverse.

“I think he wants to keep the color,” Lazar said. “He wants people still calling ‘Yellow,’ still to get a ‘Yellow Cab,’ he’d be stupid not to. That phone number is everything.”

Among taxi industry professionals, color schemes — yellow for Yellow Cab, or white and blue for Luxor — are considered a strong brand to attract riders. Phone numbers, like Yellow Cab’s iconic 415-333-3333, is easy for people to remember even after a night of drinking, Lazar said.

Many have speculated that Uber and Lyft ultimately led to Yellow Cab’s demise, but taxi officials don’t think it’s that simple.

“The reason Yellow is going down I’d say is more because of their auto accidents, their liabilities,” said Lazar.

The bankruptcy filings indicate that may be true. One of Yellow Cab’s largest creditors is Ida Fua, who was hit by a Yellow Cab at 60 mph and paralyzed on the left side of her body.

Fua won an $8 million settlement in 2015, and that debt gave her much influence over the bankruptcy proceedings, court documents reveal.

Yellow Cab had a unique structure of self-insurance, forcing them to bear the burden of collision lawsuits, which taxi industry professionals said was the foundation of its financial burden. Yellow Cab collapsed under the weight of multiple million-dollar lawsuits, like Fua’s.

“They thought they could handle insurance with no limits,” Lazar said. “They got beat up in court.”

The money owed to Fua loomed throughout the bankruptcy proceedings, even up to a point where creditors threatened further litigation of Yellow Cab for paying its shareholders — cabbies in the co-op — when they claim it should have been paying creditors.

This led to the sale of Yellow Cab’s property at 1200 Mississippi St., meaning buyers of Yellow Cab will not be purchasing its location.

“In order to get [Yellow Cab] on the right track, the trustees called for a sale of the property,” Singer confirmed to the Examiner. That property sale was approved in early February.

“As part of the negotiated settlement, they ended their litigation,” Singer said. “The creditors got money, the property owners got money.”

Though Yellow Cab’s collision lawsuits drove it to the precipice, it was the surge of Uber and Lyft drivers on the roadways that pushed it over the edge, drivers said.

John Gould has driven a taxi since 1983, and drove for Yellow Cab until 1989.

While driving downtown Wednesday morning, he told the Examiner he felt it was impossible for the cab industry — which numbers only about 1,800 taxis in San Francisco — to compete with the 45,000 Uber and Lyft drivers who flood The City.

“The Uber and Lyft cars are saturating everything,” he said.

Even before he drove a cab, he was in The City long enough to remember when Geary Boulevard downtown was two-way and San Francisco baseball fans rooted for the San Francisco Seals.

Once upon a time, Gould drove his taxi for the likes of Mayor Joe Alioto, TV anchor Tom Brokaw, and everyday San Franciscans to and fro. Now, fares are few and far between.

“The world is changing,” he said. “I’m not bitter or anything, it’s just life.”