Saturday, October 6, 2007

Ron you're no longer in the Minor Leagues

I'm sorry, I'm late on posting this, but props go out to Lucas O'Connor who is a regular contributor at Calitics blog, as well as a part time contributor here San Diego Politico. He has a great article is this week's City Beat detailing the sorry saga of Ron Nehring's reign as head of the California Republican Party. In particular his failured effort recently to try change the way California allocates its electoral votes. Go read the whole article, its a good read.

Republicans fooling themselves on the 78th

The local Republican leaders have lost their supposed hero, former Police Chief David Bejarano and scrambled to re-hype Chula Vista Councilman John McCann. This is the same person the party forced out of the race for Bejarano.

Now, the party is looking at what they can do to hold on to the district seat and there was only one way, money, money and even more money. However, they seem to be missing why Assemblywoman Shirley Horton was able to win the seat in the first place and I'm not going to tell them.

The 78 Assembly District has a total registration of 204,938 voters and the party breakdown is 84,033 Dems, 69,443 Reps and 42,955 DTS. Remember the 76 Assembly District has a total registration of 214,340 voters and the party breakdown is 84,797 Dems, 63,564 Reps and 54,012 DTS.

So, again it wasn't the party registration that won the seat for Horton and with a higher turnout for the Presidential election next November McCann will need more then money.

Help Prevent Animal Cruelty in California

On Friday night, a group of more than 100 dedicated animal protection advocates gathered in San Diego to launch a statewide initiative for the November 2008 ballot. The Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act provides the most basic protection for animals in factory farms: allowing them to turn around, and to extend their limbs or wings.

The purpose of this measure is to ban three of the cruelest forms of intensive confinement in the world of animal agribusiness: veal crates (where male calves are chained in tiny crates), battery cages (each egg-laying hen has less space than a piece of paper), and gestation crates (where pregnant sows cannot even turn around). These inhumane practices cause a great deal of pain and suffering throughout the entire life of these animals. All three of these practices have already been banned in the European Union. The following video Life Behind Bars will take you behind the scenes of factory farms.

The campaign kickoff events began on Monday, Oct.1st, in Sacramento, followed by San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and finally, in San Diego on Friday evening. This initiative is sponsored by Californians for Humane Farms. This is a coalition of animal welfare organizations, food safety organizations, environmentalists, and concerned citizens.

To qualify this initiative for the 2008 ballot, we must collect 650,000 signatures in the state of California. The deadline for the signature gathering phase is February 22nd, 2008. All of the people gathering signatures are dedicated VOLUNTEERS like myself. Become a crucial member of our team and help put this precedent-setting measure on the ballot. This measure, when passed by voters, will improve the lives of millions of farm animals in California. Thank you!
Check out:

Heads Roll - Part II

I was glad to see in the Voice of San Diego today post the article In Mayor's Office, Politics is Take-It or Leave-It, which seems to be examining the recent firings and the not so recent department of Rear Admiral Ronnie Froman. Maybe this is why the Mayor's poll numbers are hitting the floor.

However, what I found most interesting was the short blurb on Kris Michell and Fred Sainz. It throws their names out, but didn't say anything more about them, other then their titles and they were two veterans from former Mayor Susan Golding's office.

Here we have two people from a previous failed mayoral office and now key "players" in another mayor's office. Why would they be chosen? What happen to Tom Shepard? I think it would be interesting to see a story on Kris, a former chief of staff becoming a deputy chief operating officer for community and legislative services? Or a story on whether they were in anyway connected to Mayor Golding's underfunding of the city pension or even the ill-advised funidng of the 1996 Republican Convention.

Now that would be another interesting piece.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Still more on the 78th

Today's UT reports on the Assembly Republican Caucus ham-handed attempt to clear the field for former Police Chief David Bejarano to run for the seat being vacated by Shirley Horton in the 78th AD. Unfortunately, the best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men (or at least Assembly Republicans), went awry when Bejarano decided not to run for the seat.[Link] On the bright side, they side have John McCann.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Free Screening of "The Corporation"

Progressive San Diego is putting on a screening of "The Corporation" this Saturday, 7pm at the Joyce Beers Community Center in Hillcrest. The film is a must see for anyone that is concerned with the direction that our society is headed in. The film is about the rise of the dominant institution [the corporation] and the impacts that corporations make on the economy, environment and culture. "The Corporation" has won countless awards and is really part film, part movement.

The film will be followed with a discussion led by Progressive San Diego's own Bruce Reznik. Mr. Reznik is the Executive Director of San Diego Coastkeeper and is one of the main leaders of the San Diego environmental community.

What: "The Corporation"
When: Saturday, October 6th @ 7pm
Where: Joyce Beers Community Center in Hillcrest (Vermont Street, two blocks north of University Street, across from Trader Joe's)
Price: Free (though donations will be accepted in order to keep the ensure more film screenings)
RSVP: or 617-365-6788
Snacks and Drinks Provided

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Must Be An Election - Heads Continue To Roll At City Hall

As we have read in the news, another two more members of Mayor Jerry Sanders inner circle have lost their heads. Advertisement Assistant Chief Operating Officer Rick Reynolds and Purchasing and Contracting Director Lance Wade were the latest in a series of firings down at City Hall.

First, we saw the public firing of Jim Waring two months back, then the sudden disappearance of Marcela Escobar-Eck last month. They were connected to the ill advised role the Mayor took in the Sunroad debacle. When a major campaign donor does not get his way, then heads role and since their disappearance the media has dropped the ball on any further investigation of the issue. Funny how that happens.

Now with the Mayor's contracting out project on the ropes and possible local donors to the Republican Party not getting the bid we see two folks from his inner circle loss their jobs. I guess the Mayor learned from his last mistake. Fire people and the media won't cover the issue and donors will be happy.

We should expect more firings next month, because there is bound to be some other problem in the Mayor's office uncovered or an unhappy donor for another head to roll.

The Cost of Privilege

I went to a wonderful event last week at the World Beat Center to hear Chip Smith, author of the book “The Cost of Privilege: Taking on the System of White Supremacy and Racism.”

Privilege is an important subject that should be talked about more often, whether in the community, the media or the government. However, the only way that most individuals, or the media for that matter, are able to talk about the subject is through the oppressed. There is another approach that can be taken which is often forgotten—that if there is an oppressed, there must be a privileged. In a town where the dividing lines are almost visual, such as the difference between parts of town on different sides of Interstate 8, one can make plenty of arguments why it is important to not just identify the oppressed, but to also make people aware of the privileged and the society in which they benefit from on a daily bases.

The privileged have created over 300 years of white supremacy rule. Now, I am not referring to the KKK form of supremacy, but rather the built-in institutional systems that the majority shareholders have made for themselves. The privileged white population has been living for hundreds of years with their own form of affirmative action that is much more widespread and effective than what people of color supposedly enjoy. If you take a moment to read history textbooks, you will see the biases that I am referring to.

Though this is a national problem, it is certainly an issue that is being dealt with everyday in San Diego County. The more educated we become on issues of privilege and oppression, the more we will understand the agenda and bias that come of out of the articles we read and the news stories we watch.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Another Blow to The Proposed O.C. Toll Roll

The onslaught of bad news for the proposed 241 toll road extension through San Onofre State Park continues. This afternoon the California Parks Foundation released a poll they commissioned of Orange County residents. According to the findings from the poll, a majority of O.C. residents favor toll roads, however, 66% of them don't favor the construction of the toll road extension across San Onofre State Park.[Link] This news comes just days after the release of a report from the California Coastal Commission claiming that the proposed toll road "would cause widespread violations of state environmental laws by threatening endangered species, marring natural resources and compromising recreational opportunities." [Link] It will be interesting to see what new P.R. attempts the advocates of the toll road try now.

Cross posted to Calitics

Issa: Green Party Contribs Show Blackwater

Courtesy of TPM: Rep. Darrell Issa for CA-49 does a wonderful job carry water for Blackwater at today's Government Oversight hearing.

More on the 78th

So, I would be remiss to not respond to some of the comments regarding yesterday's post on the race for the 78th AD. Truth is, I don't think Auday Arabo has a chance to become the Democratic nominee for the 78th. Personally, I have met Auday. I think he is a nice guy, affable - someone I could enjoy a beer and a ballgame with. But, he is not electable. In a Dem primary, he has no party credentials, save some out of town legislators who have benefited from his lavish donations. One might say that he has basically bought every endorsement he has received. Second, the Speakers office and Labor only care about winning this thing in the general. Hard to imagine that a guy who is on video as a voter in the Iraqi elections is going to win any critical conservative Dem or cross-over vote in the general. I think the troops will rally around one of their own: Marty Block or Arlie Ricasa. That being said, JAgatha is a loyal Dem who will be glad to support Auday IF he is the nominee. After all, Republican John McCann is the epitome of sloppy seconds, and no one likes those.

What's up with Voice of San Diego?

One of the things I like about VOSD is the Cafe San Diego, where they have different local personalities host every weekday. For the second day this week, however, Cafe San Diego has featured Loren Casuto who is a writer for on to discuss the Chargers.

Now, I'm a San Diego sports fan like everyone else, and it has been a rough two weeks or so watching both the Chargers and Padres play. But are you telling that their are not more important issues to be discussed? Just my opinion.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Don't You Just Love Mondays?

I love Mondays. I really do. My favorite part of the day is hearing the tidbits of gossip that made the rounds over the weekend. Here are some of my favorites to start the week:

1) The Republicans are trying to encourage Maxine Sherard to throw her hat in the ring for the 78th. They figure that her name recognition, as a result of the millions spent last year, would make her the front-runner for the Dem nomination. Why would they want that? She would be a much easier candidate in the general compared to a Marty Block or Arlie Ricasa. Especially now that former Police Chief David Bejerano has decided to wait it out for Sheriff instead, and all they have is their "yes man" John McCann. If the Black Caucus wants a candidate in the 78th, I doubt it will be Maxine Sherard, I would say San Diego City Councilmember Tony Young is much more likely a candidate. Although, neither have expressed much interest.

2) Republican Luis Acle, I hear, will not be running for re-election on the San Diego City Schools Board of Trustees. That will leave that position wide open for Democrat Richard Barrera.

3) Republican Shirley Horton is planning to return to Chula Vista for a City Council run against Steve Castenada. Gotta love how the Republicans eat their own. I hear she wants to set herself up for a 2012 run for Greg Cox's seat. However, Senator Denise Ducheny and Councilmember Ben Hueso have also previously expressed in interest in that seat.

4) There has been some talk about the Republican elected officials who WON'T be supporting ethically-challenged April Boling's run for District 7 City Council. Among those past and present Republican electeds who supposedly have a beef with Boling: the entire County Board of Supervisors, former Mayor Dick Murphy, former Councilwoman Judy McCarty, current Councilman Jim Madaffer, La Mesa Mayor Art Madrid, County Treasurer Dan McCallister, (need I continue). I'll be interested to see if Marti can pull endorsements from any of the above, or if they will eventually fall in line with the Downtown Establishment. Seems Boling has a hard time making and keeping friends, even among her base.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Please don't eat your young

The Democrats in Washington, D.C. are about to complete their first year as the majority of both chambers. In addition, next year's election they could take back the White House and win enough seats in the Senate to stop a Republican fillerbuster. The House could even get closer to over-riding a Presidential veto, but that is still far off.

In Sacramento, the Democrats could take the additional seats needed to have a 2/3 membership in both chambers and make the Republicans useless for good.

However, the Democrats are going to follow the lead of the Republicans and eat their young. The Republicans are about to eject Mayor Jerry Sanders, because he has finally seen the light and supports gay marriage, they are ejecting Assemblymember George Plescia, because he supports Carl Demaio for coming out of the closet (yes, he is gay), Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for supporting health care reform and Mayor Rudy Giuliani over a woman's right to choice.

The Democratic Party and activists should first focus on finding where they can agree and pass legislation, then to fight about their differences. Remember, the Republicans will have enough to fight Democrats over.

Don't eat your young and just elect more of your Democrats!