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News

Hundreds protest Netanyahu

By Judith Scherr and John Geluardi Daily Planet
Wednesday November 29, 2000

Chanting and waving signs, condemning the visit of former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, demonstrators broke through police lines Tuesday evening and prevented lecturegoers from entering the high school gates, the entrance to the theater where Netanyahu was to speak. 

Just before 8 p.m., when the lecture was to begin, organizers canceled the event. 

Police made no attempt to arrest protesters, whose numbers swelled beyond 500 people. They lined up shoulder to shoulder inside the gates with billy clubs ready by their waists and protesters lined up outside the gate, blocking entry to the 100 or so people who had tickets to the lecture series. 

Before the throng broke through the yellow police tape blocking off the intersection of Milvia and Kittedge streets, Palestinian Hatem Bazian, a lecturer at UC Berkeley, addressed the crowd through a bull horn: “Palestinians are not allowed to buy land or rent apartments in land occupied or controlled by the Israelis in the so-called only democracy in the Middle East,” he said. “Territory in the Gaza Strip is occupied by settlers who are the most racist and fascist people on the face of the earth.” 

As prime minister and leader of the Likud Party, Netanyahu has supported these settlements. 

At about 7:30 p.m., some of the audience members, who had been standing patiently in line, hoping to go through the gates blocked by protesters, turned around an headed for their cars. 

“You get up to the front (of the crowd) and it’s very scary,” said one well-dressed woman, who was leaving the area. 

Another would-be audience member, Steve Wolan said he was a veteran of Berkeley’s Free Speech Movement. Although he said he was not a Netanyahu supporter, he condemned the demonstrators for not allowing people the right to hear what he had to say. 

“It’s a little ironic. This is the cradle of free speech.” 

Councilmember Dona Spring was among the demonstrators. Noting the large police presence, Spring said she was outraged that the organizers of the lecture series had brought such an “inflammatory” figure to town. 

“This is an outrageous use of taxpayer money,” she said, referring to an estimated $15,000 in police overtime that the event would cost. 

At about 8 p.m., an announcement went out that the event had been canceled and a cheer rang out from the demonstrators, who organized themselves into a march. Chanting “no justice no peace,” the crowd, which had diminished to about 300 people, made a quick tour around downtown. 

“The protest was a success,” said Bazian before he headed for home. “Once again, Berkeley leads the way. It did in the Free Speech Movement and in the anti-apartheid movement. It stands up for its ideals.” 


Calendar of Events & Activities

Wednesday November 29, 2000


Wednesday, Nov. 29

 

Wanderlust: Tales of  

Adventure and Romance 

7:30 p.m.  

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave. (at Rose) 

Jeff Greenwald and other travel writers discuss the art of writing travel literature and how to make a living doing it.  

Call 843-3533 

 

Berkeley Gray Panthers  

Membership Meeting 

1:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Discussion of how the election results will affect the Gray Panthers.  

Call 548-9696 

 

Mental Health Commission 

6:30 p.m. 

2640 MLK Jr. Way (at Derby) 

 

Assembling Safe Sex 

4:30 - 7:30 p.m.  

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Members of the campus and community are invited to help assemble safe sex kits to be distributed on World AIDS Day. Refreshments and musical entertainment provided.  

Call Brian Kim, 642-7202 

 

Challenges of Parenting Adolescents  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

This workshop focuses on the challenges facing parents and teens. Learn how to avoid triggering and pushing each other’s buttons. Runs three consecutive Wednesdays, through Dec. 13. Led by Kathy Langsam, MA, MFT, JFCS Teen Services Coordinator.  

$60 

Call 704-7475 


Thursday, Nov. 30

 

Pro Arts Juried Show  

Reception 

6 - 8 p.m.  

Pro Arts 

461 Ninth St.  

Oakland 

With the work of 70 artists, this annual show features the work of emerging and mid-career artists. The show runs through December 30. See A&E calendar for details.  

 

A Picture of Democracy 

7 p.m.  

Valley Life Sciences Building  

Room 2050 

UC Berkeley 

A 70-minute documentary entitled “This is What Democracy Looks Like,” capturing the events of the WTO protests in Seattle. Followed by “Zapatista!,” a documentary about the 1994 Indigenous uprising in Chiapas, Mexico.  

$5 - $10 sliding scale  

 

Snowshoeing Basics  

7 p.m . 

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Professional snowshoe guide Cathy Anderson-Meyers gives basic instruction on how to get out and experience Tahoe’s winter terrain on “shoes.” 527-4140 

 

Art for Sale 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Kala Art Institute  

1060 Heinz Ave.  

Over sixty artists affiliated with the Kala Art Institute exhibit works ranging from traditional wood block prints to works in digital media.  

549-2977 

Oakland Museum Trip for  

Seniors 

(trip on Dec. 8) 

A trip to the Oakland Museum to see the Imperial Palace of China Exhibit. Organized by the North Berkeley Senior Center 

Call Maggie, 644-6107 

 

Let Your Chi Flow Freely 

6 - 7 p.m.  

University of Creation Spirituality 

2141 Broadway Ave. 

Oakland 

Share peace and tranquillity communally and regain harmony and balance.  

Call Idris Hassan, 835-4827 x31  

 

Witness In Our Time 

7 p.m.  

105 North Gate Hall 

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism 

Center for Photography 

Kerry Tremain moderates a conversation with Wayne Miller, Ken Light, Matt Heron and Michelle Vignes. Followed by a book signing for “Chicago’s South Side” by Wayne Miller and “Witness in Our Time” by Ken Light. 

Call 642-3383  

 

Free Anonymous HIV Testing 

5:15 - 7:15 p.m. 

Check in 5 - 7 p.m. 

University Health Services 

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Drop-in services and limited space is available.  

Call 642-7202 

 

Bay Area Air Quality Hearing 

9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. 

939 Ellis St.  

San Francisco 

Among the cases to be discussed is the Apco vs. Pacific Steel Company of Berkeley over alleged violations of a California health and safety code. (415)-771-6000 


Friday, Dec. 1

 

Spanish Book Club 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody’s Books  

2454 Telegraph Ave.  

A discussion of “Dona Barbara” by the Colombian writer Rumulo Gallegos. New members welcome. The group meets the first Friday of each month.  

Call 601-0454  

 

AIDS Prevention Outreach 

11 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Sproul Plaza  

UC Berkeley 

Safer sex kits will be distributed.  

 

Taize Worship Services  

7:30 - 8:30 p.m.  

Loper Chapel  

Dana St. (between Durant & Channing) Call 848-3696 

 

Basic Electrical Theory 

7 - 10 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Redwood Kardon, retired City of Oakland building inspector and author of the Code Check book series.  

$35 Call 525-7610 

 

Safer Sex Kits 

4:30 p.m. 

Downtown Berkeley BART 

Volunteers from Americorps will be distributing safer sex kits in commemoration of World AIDS Day.  


Saturday, Dec. 2

 

Wild About Books? 

10:30 a.m. 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

Storyteller Kellmar draws from her African-American roots with stories that touch the heart and the funnybone. For children aged 3-7. 

Call 649-3943  

 

Artists at Play Holiday Sale 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Artists at Play Studio  

1649 Hopkins St. (at Carlotta)  

Work by the artists including original servings dishes, frames, jewelry, and other items. 

Call 528-0494  

 

The Yo-Yo Lady 

2 - 4 p.m. 

1898 Solano Ave.  

Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Small Press  

Distribution Open House 

Noon - 4 p.m.  

1341 Seventh St. (off Gilman) 

Browse 8,000 literary titles and listen to readings by Bay Area authors. Readings by poet Lyn Hejinian, George Albon, Dan Leone, Gail Mitchell, and Sianne Ngai. Call 524-1668 x305 

 

— compiled by  

Chason Wainwright 

 

 

Whymsium Anniversary Party 

7:30 - 11 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. This annual party features a talent show, games and a dance.  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

UC Botanical Holiday Plant Sale 

10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden  

200 Centennial Dr.  

You’ll find a selection of orchids, ferns, rhododendrons, cacti, hardy herbs, and house plants galore for yourself or gardening friends.  

Call 643-2755 

 

Native American Flute  

5 - 6 p.m. 

Gathering Tribes Gallery  

1573 Solano Ave.  

Celebrating the release of his CD “Spirit Within,” Berkeley resident and flutist Walter Ogi Johnson performs.  

 

Monitoring Police Activity 

11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

Copwatch Office  

2022 Blake St. (west of Shattuck) 

Learn what your rights are in dealing with police and learn how to monitor police safely. Free.  

Call 548-0425 

 

Finding a Way In 

7 - 9 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Offering a safe space for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender jews to express personal concerns and to find a place to belong in the Jewish community.  

$5 with pre-registraiton; $7 at door  

845-6420 

 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Know Your Rights Training 

11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

Copwatch Office  

2022 Blake St.  

Learn what your rights are in dealing with the police. Learn how to monitor the police safely.  

Call 548-0425 

 

Publish Your Own Book 

10 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Regent Press 

6020-A Adeline St. 

Mark Weiman of Regen Press presents an overview of the business of book publishing oriented towards the author considering self-publishing.  

$60 per person 

Call Mark Weiman, 547-7602 

 

Friends of Berkeley Youth Alternatives 

Wine Tasting  

1 - 4 p.m. 

Rosenblum Cellars 

2900 Main St.  

Alameda 

All proceeds benefit the children and families served by Berkeley Youth Alternatives. 

$25 

Call 845-9010 

 

Alternative Building Materials 

10 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Seminar taught by architects Dan Smith and John Fordice. 

$75  

Call 525-7610 

 

Sunday Dec. 3 

Connecting with Nature 

1 - 3 p.m.  

Rotary Nature Center  

600 Bellevue Ave. (at Perkins) 

Oakland 

Children aged six to twelve, accompanied by a parent, are invited to explore nature with all their senses. Cathy Holt, author of “The Circle of Healing” will lead the event. Free 

Call Stephanie for reservations, 238-3739 

 

HIV Memorial Service 

11 a.m. 

McGee Avenue Baptist Church 

1640 Stuart St.  

A special morning HIV service for members of the community.  

Call 843-1774 

 

Transcending Limits on Knowledge  

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place 

Lee Nichol on Tarthang Tulku’s “Time, Space, and Knowledge.” Free 

843-6812 

 

Richmond Holiday Arts Festival 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

Richmond Art Center 

2540 Barret Ave.  

Richmond 

A silent auction, craft sale, gifts and services auction, and hands-on art projects. Proceeds benefit the Richmond Art Center. Free  

620-6772 

 

Kitka’s “Wintersongs Holiday Tour” 

7 p.m. 

Lake Merritt United Methodist Church 

1330 Lakeshore Ave. 

Oakland 

In it’s first annual winter holiday concert, this women’s vocal ensemble will perform Eastern European seasonal songs.  

$15 - $20 

444-0323 

 

Berkeley High Pep Band 

4 - 6 p.m. 

1850 Solano Ave. 

One of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Winterfest 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

A celebration of winter family traditions like music, dance, craft activities, and food. Included in museum admission. 

$6 general, $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Joe Raskin & David Slusser’s  

Improv Derby 

7:48 p.m. 

Tuva Space 

3192 Adeline (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Joe Raskin/George Cremaschi Duo & David Slusser’s Improv Derby. Part of ACME Observatory Contemporary Music Series.  

$8 suggested donation 

Call 444-3595 

 

The Music Connection 

2:30 p.m. 

Resurrection Lutheran Church 

397 Euclid Ave.  

Oakland  

Several well known Bay Area musicians and composers join amateur autistic musicians to raise money and raise awareness of autism and to provide the opportunity for those living with the disease to develop their talents. 

$10 - $200 suggested donation 

Call 420-0606  

 

“Music on Squirrel Hill”  

4 p.m. 

Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley 

One Lawson Road 

Kensington 

The San Francisco Choral artists directed by Claire Giovannetti sing traditional and less familiar classics of the season.  

$15 general, $10 students & seniors  

Call 525-0302 

 

Monday, Dec. 4 

Personnel Board Meeting 

7 p.m.  

Permit Center 

2118 Milvia St.  

First Floor Conference Room 

 

BHS AIDS Memorial Quilt 

Berkeley High School 

2246 Milvia  

Berkeley High will be displaying the AIDS Memorial Quilt the entire week, including 150 panels made by Berkeley High students.  

Call Sonya Dublin, 644-6838 x4 

 

Landmarks Preservation Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

North Berkely Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Peace and Justice Commission 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Keeping Parents Sane 

6:30 - 8:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services  

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

If your child(ren) are defiant and oppositional and you don’t know what to do, try this workshop led by Liz Marton, MFT.  

$20 

Call 704-7475 

 

Criminalization of Youth 

7:30 p.m. 

King Middle School  

1781 Rose St.  

Angela Davis, educator, activist, and former political prisoner speaks at this benefit lecture for the Niebyl-Proctor Marxist Library.  

$5 

Call 595-7417  

 

Make a Wreath 

7 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

Furniture Making for Women 

9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Finish carpenter Tracy Weir teaches this hands-on, four day workshop, culminating with each attendee building her own cabinet unit with drawer and shelf. Runs through Dec. 8.  

$475  

Call 525-7610 

 

“Choosing Something Like a Star” 

7:30 p.m. 

PSR Chapel 

1798 Scenic Ave.  

This annual free concert will feature the PSR Chorale and the Kairos Youth Choir performing carols from many traditions.  

Call Mike Ellard, 236-3033 

 

Tuesday, Dec. 5 

Design the Perfect School  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Ave. (at Rose) 

Informally led by Robert Berend, former UC Extension lecturer, this group aims to have intelligent discussions on a wide range of topics. They stress that there is no religious bent to the discussions and that all viewpoints are welcome. Bring light snacks to share with group.  

Call Robert Berend, 527-5332  

 

Jewish Book Club 

7:30 - 9:15 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center  

1414 Walnut St.  

Join in a discussion of Brian Norton’s “Starting Out in the Evening.” Free 

848-0237 x 127 

 

Get the Lead Out 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Frances Albrier Center 

San Pablo Park  

2800 Park St.  

Learn how to prevent lead poisoning in your home. Taught by expert staff, this course offers techniques property owners can use to safety paint and remodel their homes.  

Call 567-8280 

 

Make a Wreath 

7 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

City Council 

7 p.m. 

Old City Hall  

2134 MLK Jr. Way 

 

Wednesday, Dec. 6  

Task Force on Telecommunications 

7 p.m. 

1900 Addison  

Third Floor Conference Room 

 

Citizens Budget Review Commission 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way)  

 

BHS Jazz Lab Band & Combos 

7:30 p.m. 

Berkeley High Little Theater 

Allston Way  

Their first concert of the new school year.  

$8 general, $3 students  

 

Board of Education 

7:30 p.m. 

2134 MLK Jr. Way  

Council Chambers 

 

Fire Safety Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

Fire Department Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St.  

 

Berkeley Communicators Toastmasters 

7:15 p.m. 

Vault Restaurant  

3250 Adeline St.  

Learn to speak fluently without fear or hesitation.  

Call Howard Linnard, 527-2337 

 

Thursday, Dec. 7 

Berkeley Metaphysic Toastmasters Club 

6:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. 

2515 Hillegass Ave.  

Public speaking skills and metaphysic come together at Avatar Metaphysical Toastmasters. Meets first and third Thursdays each month. 

Call 869-2547 or 643-7645 

 

Free Anonymous HIV Testing 

5:15 - 7:15 p.m. 

Check in 5 - 7 p.m. 

University Health Services 

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Drop-in services and limited space is available.  

Call 642-7202 

 

Women’s Travel Book Club 

6:30 p.m. 

Cody’s Books 

1730 Fourth St.  

Join a discussion of M.F.K. Fisher’s “Two Towns in Provence: Map of Another Town & A Considerable Town.” New members are always welcome. The group meets the first Thursday of each month.  

Call 482-8971 

 

Make a Wreath 

10 a.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

Prepare Meals in a Snow Kitchen  

7 p.m.  

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Chuck Collingwood of the Sierra Club will present a slide lecture on how to survive overnight in the snow.  

Call Jason, 527-7377 

 

Let Your Chi Flow Freely 

6 - 7 p.m.  

University of Creation Spirituality 

2141 Broadway Ave. 

Oakland 

Share peace and tranquillity communally and regain harmony and balance.  

Call Idris Hassan, 835-4827 x31  

 

Lunch Poems Reading Series 

12:10 p.m. - 12:50 p.m.  

Morrison Room, Doe Library 

UC Berkeley  

Featuring the first three authors in the UC Press’s California Poetry Series. Featured poets will be Fanny Howe, Mark Levine, and Carol Snow. Free  

Call 642-0137  

 

Housing Advisory Commission 

7:30 p.m.  

South Berkeley Senior Center 

2939 Ellis St.  

 

Public Works Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Community Environmental Advisory Commission 

7 p.m. 

2118 Milvia St.  

Second Floor Conference Room 

 

Friday, Dec. 8  

PC Users Group 

7 p.m. 

Vista College 

Room 303  

2020 Milvia St.  

A groups of PC users who help each other solve problems. They introduce their members to new software, hardware, and invited speakers and technicians from various PC related companies. Meet the second Friday of each month.  

Call Melvin Mann, 527-2177  

 

Trunk Show with Art Quintanna 

4 - 7 p.m.  

Gathering Tribes Gallery 

1573 Solano Ave. 

Hailing from New Mexico, Quintanna specializes in older “dead pawn” Indian jewelry.  

 

An Evening Under the Stars 

5 - 8 p.m. 

Courtyard at Swans Marketplace 

Ninth St. between Washington and Clay St. 

With jazz standards playing in the background, discover the work of local artists and find a unique holiday gift. Sponsored by East Bay Galleries for Art and Cultural Development.  

Call 832-4244 

 

WomenSing  

8 p.m. 

Valley Center for the Performing Arts 

Holy Names College 

3500 Mountain Blvd.  

Oakland 

In the first concert of their 35th anniversary season titled “Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day,” WomenSing perform music of Irving Berlin, Holst, and others.  

$20 general, $18 seniors/students, $10 18 and under 

Call 925-798-1300 

 

Saturday, Dec. 9  

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Bay Area Steppers Drill Team 

2 - 4 p.m. 

1216 Solano Ave. 

One of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Artists at Play Holiday Sale 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Artists at Play Studio  

1649 Hopkins St. (at Carlotta)  

Work by the artists including original servings dishes, frames, jewelry, and other items. 

Call 528-0494  

 

Class Dismissed  

7:30 p.m. 

Boadecia’s Books 

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.)  

Kensington 

Meredith Maran discusses her book “A Year In the Life of an American High School, A Glimpse into the Heart of a Nation,” the result of her following the lives of three Berkeley High students. Free 

Call 559-9184  

 

Loneliness: A Spiritual Crisis? 

7:30 p.m. 

Unitarian Hall 

1924 Cedar St.  

Hear about the spiritual path of Light and Sound.  

Call Patricia, 339-6577 

 

Farmers’ Market Craft Fair 

10 a.m. - 4 p.m.  

MLK Jr. Civic Center Park  

(Center at MLK Jr. Way) 

Local craftspeople will be selling a variety of handcrafted gifts. Also live music, massage, and hot apple cider. Free 

Call 548-3333 

 

West Coast Live  

10 a.m. - Noon  

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St.  

Interviews, musical performances and a live radio play broadcast to a hundred cities worldwide. This show features the Magniolia Sisters, Alex DiGrassi, Tata Monk and author Malachy McCourt.  

Call 415-664-9500  

 

Trunk Show with Art Quintanna 

10 a.m. -6 p.m.  

Gathering Tribes Gallery 

1573 Solano Ave. 

Hailing from New Mexico, Quintanna specializes in older “dead pawn” Indian jewelry.  

 

Sunday, Dec. 10 

Parenting Book Club 

11 a.m.  

Cody’s Books 

1730 Fourth St.  

Take part in a discussion of “Mothers Who Think” edited by Camille Peri. New group members always welcome. The group meets the second Sunday of each month.  

Call 559-9500 

 

Irish Harp & Guitar 

Noon - 2 p.m. 

1603 Solano Ave.  

Trish NiGabhain is one of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

LesBiGayTrans Parenting 

11 a.m. 

Boadecia’s Books 

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.) 

Kensington 

These two groups meet on the second Sunday of each month. The group meeting at 11 a.m. is for prospective parents, the one at noon for parents.  

Call 559-9184 

 

Ancient Buddhist Tales 

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place  

Rima Tamar, storyteller and Dharma Publishing sales director, tells some classic Buddhist stories. Free  

843-6812 

 

TOCAR with David Frazier 

4:30 p.m. 

Jazzschool/La Note  

2377 Shattuck Ave.  

$6 - $12  

Reservations: 845-5373 

 

Tibetan Nyingma Open House 

3 -5 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place  

A free introduction to Tibetan Buddhist culture, including a Tibetan yoga demonstration and a meditation garden tour.  

Call 843-6812  

 

Baroque Choral Guild  

7:30 p.m. 

First Congregational Church 

2345 Channing Way 

Performing the music of Giovanni Gabrieli, Claudio Merulo, Giovanni Croce, and others.  

$20 general, $15 seniors and students  

Call 408-733-8110 

 

“From Swastikas to Jim Crow”  

10:30 a.m.  

Jewish Learning Center 

1414 Walnut St. 

Donald and Lore Rasmussen of Berkeley, and Jim McWilliams of Oakland, discuss their experiences and the experiences of others who fled Nazi Germany and ended up teaching in African-American colleges in the segregated south. Admission includes brunch.  

$4 BRJCC members; $5 general  

Call 848-0237 x127 

 

Weird Rooms 

3 - 5 p.m.  

Berkeley History Center 

1931 Center St.  

Mal and Sandra Sharpe discuss people who collect unusual things and how their collections take over their rooms.  

 

Black Images in the White Mind 

6:30 p.m. 

Walden Pond Books  

3316 Grand Ave.  

Oakland  

Jan Faulkner will give a slide show presentation of about her book, “Ethnic Notions.”  

Call 832-4438 

 

Wednesday, Dec. 13 

Oakland Preschool Fair 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Piedmont Avenue Elementary School 

4314 Piedmont Ave.  

Oakland 

Sponsored by the Neighborhood Parents Network, this panel discussion allows parents the opportunity to speak with representatives from local preschools. 

Free to NPN members, $5 general 

Call 527-6667 

 

Energy Commission 

5:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Waterfront Commission Meeting 

7 p.m. 

His Lordships Restaurant  

199 Seawall Dr.  

 

Planning Commission 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Commission on Disability  

6:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Board of Library Trustees  

7 p.m. 

West Branch  

1125 University Ave.  

 

Homeless Commission  

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Police Review Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

South Berkeley Senior Center 

2939 Ellis St.  

 

Thursday, Dec. 14  

Ultimate Alpine Climbing  

7 p.m.  

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Join veteran alpine climber Kitty Calhoun in a slide presentation of her 20-year climbing career.  

Call Jason, 527-7377 

 

Free Anonymous HIV Testing 

5:15 - 7:15 p.m. 

Check in 5 - 7 p.m. 

University Health Services 

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Drop-in services and limited space is available.  

Call 642-7202 

 

Solano Ave. Association 

Holiday Mixer & Meeting 

5:30 - 7:30 p.m. 

Cafe Del Sol 

1742 Solano Ave.  

With light refreshments and a silent auction, the Solano Ave. Association invites you to “meet your business neighbors.”  

Call 527-5358  

 

Community Health Commission 

6:45 p.m. 

2640 MLK Jr. Way  

Auditorium 

Call 665-6845 for exact location 

 

Zoning Adjustments Board  

7 p.m. 

Council Chamber 

2134 MLK Jr. Way  

Second Floor 

 

Friday, Dec. 15 

BHS Orchestra and Concert Band 

7:30 p.m. 

Berkeley High Little Theater  

Allston Way 

 

Saturday, Dec. 16 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Berkeley Community Chamber Chorus 

2 - 4 p.m. 

Strolling along Solano Ave. 

One of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Farmers’ Market Craft Fair 

10 a.m. - 4 p.m.  

MLK Jr. Civic Center Park  

(Center at MLK Jr. Way) 

Local craftspeople will be selling a variety of handcrafted gifts. Also live music, massage, and hot apple cider. Free 

Call 548-3333 

 

Sunday, Dec. 17  

Benefits of Kum Nye and Meditation 

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place  

Miep Cooymans, Nyingma Institute meditation instructor lectures and demonstrates this gentle, self-healing system. Free 

843-6812 

 

The Disputation 

2 - 4:30 p.m.  

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Call 848-0237 

 

Guitar of Reverend Rabia 

Noon - 2 p.m. 

1741 Solano Ave. 

One of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Hanukkah Happening 

8 p.m. 

Shambhala Booksellers 

2482 Telegraph Ave.  

Cantor and recording artist Richard Kaplan will lead attendees in seasonal music. Free.  

Call 848-8443 

 

Monday, Dec. 18 

Design Review Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst St. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Tuesday, Dec. 19 

Planning for the Future 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Ave. (at Rose) 

Informally led by Robert Berend, former UC Extension lecturer, this group aims to have intelligent discussions on a wide range of topics. They stress that there is no religious bent to the discussions and that all viewpoints are welcome. Bring light snacks to share with group.  

Call Robert Berend, 527-5332  

 

Wednesday, Dec. 20 

Berkeley Communicators Toastmasters 

7:15 p.m. 

Vault Restaurant  

3250 Adeline St.  

Learn to speak fluently without fear or hesitation.  

Call Howard Linnard, 527-2337 

 

Thursday, Dec. 21 

Berkeley Metaphysic Toastmasters Club 

6:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. 

2515 Hillegass Ave.  

Public speaking skills and metaphysic come together at Avatar Metaphysical Toastmasters. Meets first and third Thursdays each month. 

Call 869-2547 or 643-7645 

 

Free Anonymous HIV Testing 

5:15 - 7:15 p.m. 

Check in 5 - 7 p.m. 

University Health Services 

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Drop-in services and limited space is available.  

Call 642-7202 

 

Saturday, Dec. 23  

Farmers’ Market Craft Fair 

10 a.m. - 4 p.m.  

MLK Jr. Civic Center Park  

(Center at MLK Jr. Way) 

Local craftspeople will be selling a variety of handcrafted gifts. Also live music, massage, and hot apple cider. Free 

Call 548-3333 

 

Royal Hawaiian Ukulele Band 

Noon - 2 p.m. 

1561 Solano Ave. 

One of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Sunday, Dec. 24  

Ancient Winds 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

1573 Solano Ave. 

One of many performers doing their stuff on Solano during the holidays. Performances every weekend afternoon till Christmas.  

 

Wednesday, Jan. 3  

Berkeley Communicators Toastmasters 

7:15 p.m. 

Vault Restaurant  

3250 Adeline St.  

Learn to speak fluently without fear or hesitation.  

Call Howard Linnard, 527-2337 

 

Friday, Jan. 5  

Zen Buddhist Sites in China 

7 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

Andy Ferguson, author of “Zen’s Chinese Heritage: The Masters and Their Teachings,” presents a slide show of Zen holy sites in China. Ferguson will read from the book and engage the audience in a brief meditation session. Included in museum admission. 

$6 general, $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Thursday, Jan. 11 

Toni Stone and the Negro Baseball League 

1 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

Marcia Eymann, curator of historical photography, discusses memorabilia of Toni Stone, a woman who played in the Negro Baseball Legue in the 1940s. Free. 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Free Anonymous HIV Testing 

5:15 - 7:15 p.m. 

Check in 5 - 7 p.m. 

University Health Services 

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Drop-in services and limited space is available.  

Call 642-7202 

 

Saturday, Jan. 13 

“Dyke Open Myke!” 

7:30 p.m. 

Boadecia’s Books  

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.) 

Kensington 

A coffeehouse-style open mic. night for emerging talent. 

Call Jessy, 655-1015  

or Boadecia’s Books, 559-9184 

 

Sunday, Jan. 14 

Teaching Chinese Culture in the U.S.  

2 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

Educators from Bay Area Chinese schools explore issues related to teaching Chinese culture and language. Included in museum admission.  

$6 general; $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

LesBiGayTrans Parenting 

11 a.m. 

Boadecia’s Books 

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.) 

Kensington 

These two groups meet on the second Sunday of each month. The group meeting at 11 a.m. is for prospective parents, the one at noon for parents.  

Call 559-9184 

 

Berkeley, 1900  

3 - 5 p.m. . 

Berkeley History Center 

1931 Center St.  

Richard Schwartz gives an oral history of Berkeley at the turn of the century.  

 

A-Singin’ and a Chantin’ 

8 p.m. 

Shambhala Booksellers 

2482 Telegraph Ave.  

Pagan recording artist DJ Hamouris shares some songs and chants. 

Call 848-8443 

 

Wednesday, Jan. 17  

Berkeley Communicators Toastmasters 

7:15 p.m. 

Vault Restaurant  

3250 Adeline St.  

Learn to speak fluently without fear or hesitation.  

Call Howard Linnard, 527-2337 

 

ONGOING EVENTS 

 

Sundays 

Green Party Consensus Building Meeting 

6 p.m. 

2022 Blake St. 

This is part of an ongoing series of discussions for the Green Party of Alameda County, leading up to endorsements on measures and candidates on the November ballot. This week’s focus will be the countywide new Measure B transportation sales tax. The meeting is open to all, regardless of party affiliation. 

415-789-8418 

 

Mondays 

Baby Bounce and Toddler Time 

10:30 a.m. 

Oct. 16 - Dec. 11 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

For children ages 6 to 36 months. Get those babies off to a good start with songs, rhymes, lap bounces, and very simple books. 

649-3943  

 

Tuesdays 

Easy Tilden Trails 

9:30 a.m. 

Tilden Regional Park, in the parking lot that dead ends at the Little Farm 

Join a few seniors, the Tuesday Tilden Walkers, for a stroll around Jewel Lake and the Little Farm Area. Enjoy the beauty of the wildflowers, turtles, and warblers, and waterfowl. 

215-7672; members.home.com/teachme99/tilden/index.html 

 

Berkeley Farmers’ Market 

2-7 p.m. 

Derby Street between Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Milvia Street 

548-3333 

 

Berkeley Camera Club 

7:30 p.m. 

Northbrae Community Church, 941 The Alameda 

Share your slides and prints with other photographers. Critiques by qualified judges. Monthly field trips. 

531-8664 

 

Computer literacy course 

6-8 p.m. 

James Kenney Recreation Center, 1720 Eighth St. 

This free course will cover topics such as running Windows, File Management, connecting to and surfing the web, using Email, creating Web pages, JavaScript and a simple overview of programming. The course is oriented for adults. 

644-8511 

 

Wednesdays  

10:30 a.m. 

Preschool Song and Story Time 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

Music and stories for ages 3-5.  

649-3943 

 

Thursdays 

The Disability Mural 

4-7 p.m. through September 

Integrated Arts 

933 Parker 

Drop-in Mural Studios will be held for community gatherings and tile-making sessions. This mural will be installed at Ed Roberts campus. 

841-1466 

 

Free Anonymous HIV Testing 

5:15 - 7:15 p.m. 

Check in 5 - 7 p.m. 

University Health Services 

Tang Center  

2222 Bancroft Way 

Drop-in services and limited space is available.  

Call 642-7202  

 

Saturdays 

Berkeley Farmers’ Market 

10 a.m.-3 p.m. 

Center Street between Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Milvia Street 

548-3333 

Poets Juan Sequeira and Wanna Thibideux Wright 

 

2nd and 4th Sunday 

Rhyme and Reason Open Mike Series 

2:30 p.m. 

UC Berkeley Art Museum, 2621 Durant Ave. 

The public and students are invited. Sign-ups for the open mike begin at 2 p.m. 

234-0727;642-5168 

 

Tuesday and Thursday 

Free computer class for seniors 

9:30-11:30 a.m. 

South Berkeley Senior Center, 2939 Ellis St. 

This free course offers basic instruction in keyboarding, Microsoft Word, Windows 95, Excel and Internet access. Space is limited; the class is offered Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. Call ahead for a reservation. 

644-6109 

 

Compiled by Chason Wainwright 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Letters to the Editor

Wednesday November 29, 2000

University is going too far 

 

Editor:  

The arrogance men do lives after them.  

E.P. Denton, UC Berkeley vice-chancellor for “capital projects,” told the regents last week that because students need more housing they are “looking to the Shattuck and University Avenue corridors.” (SF Chronicle, Nov. 17) So, editors, get ready to move. 

Yes, indeed, that is quite some “capital project.” It’s the whole family farm: lock, stock, and barrel.  

When my mother was a teenager, she told me that she and friends would get on a trolley and ride through open fields to an Italian village called Temescal, get off and have some bread and cheese. They’d then get on another trolley and ride through more open fields to Oakland. That was around 1904. 

Tomorrow, you won’t be able to get off the freeway into Berkeley unless you have a Cal reg-card. 

 

George Kauffman 

Berkeley 

 

Harrison Field fiasco  

Editor:  

Last week, while breaking ground for the new city skateboard park in West Berkeley, construction crews struck contaminated groundwater, and the site was shut down.  

Who would have thought that the Hollywood movie “Erin Brockovich” would be played out in Berkeley! Yet, lab tests have revealed the presence of hexavalent chromium (chromium-6) in the groundwater samples and the suspected source, a large toxic plume upgradient from the recreational site.  

It now appears that the city, which intended to buy a kid’s soccer field, may also have purchased the long-term management of the area’s chromium-6 plume. 

It doesn’t take a hydrologist or toxicologist to understand this blunder, just a few facts and a little common sense. The ABCs of real estate say that before a property known to be contaminated is purchased, that either the buyer or the seller requests a Phase One technical site review which, you should know, also addresses off-site concerns.  

Such a study reduces the likelihood of being blindsided and stuck with the cleanup costs, such as those associated with the “newly” discovered toxic plume. In fact, no lending institution would commit to any industrial land purchase without a completed Phase I site study.  

As you might guess, the bank for Harrison Fields was the city itself. In the first week alone, remediation costs at the site have drained city coffers of nearly $200,000! 

Somehow, neither the UC Regents or the city of Berkeley asked for a Phase One report. Certainly, one of the city’s excuses will be that it simply attempted to wear too many hats, i.e., owner, environmental regulator, developer, contractor, and bank. With few checks and balances, the Harrison Project was allowed to become more than a single poor choice, but a series of mistakes spanning back to the re-zoning of the site two years ago. 

If the zoning process had been conducted responsibly in 1998, a complete Phase One would have been performed at Harrison, if only to legally affirm the assumptions put forth in the re-zoning of the site for recreational use. Instead, the city, playing the anxious buyer, rushed in without a Phase One study and then raced through all the city processes with little more in hand than the political directive to build this ball park in the industrial sector.  

Because of the extremely shallow groundwater levels and Codornices Creek bordering the soccer fields, it was necessary to install a dewatering system across the entire site, and especially at the skate park because of its structure. These drainage activities will draw the plume toward and into the Harrison site.  

Certainly, the sites water discharge points will need to be actively monitored. Moreover, the disruptions caused by the skate park’s construction will accelerate this process as the structure itself becomes a conduit to the interior of the property. The upward migration of chromium-6 has now become a real concern.  

Undoubtedly, a proper site groundwater investigation would have prevented any below-ground construction at Harrison Fields. Now the city will have to fill in all the construction pits of the skate park and look to an above-ground design, if it’s still convinced this is the best place for our children.  

It never seems to fail that when a community like Berkeley discovers a serious groundwater problem, the Regional Water Quality Board says, “We make polluters pay!” It’s time to tell the truth. Most often, where the pollution is owned by a small company and any attempt to require a cleanup usually results in bankruptcy.  

Therefore, the water board rarely makes any real demands for cleanup, as this long-standing chromium-6 groundwater plume clearly demonstrates. There has been no attempt to actively remediate this toxic plume. Instead, it has been allowed to spread off-site for years.  

It’s unlikely the city will recover anything from the UC Regents for failure to disclose off-site chromium-6 since the city government was so thoroughly notified, before, during and after the purchase, of the inadequate soil and groundwater review.  

This is government at its worst! An audit and investigation of the Harrison Fields Project and its re-zoning should be demanded.  

 

LA Wood 

Berkeley 

 

University wife opposes Underhill  

Noonan addressed the UC Regents two weeks ago: 

 

My name is Mary Lee Noonan. I speak as a member of the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association’s Board, as a faculty wife, as the mother of two Cal students and as longtime supporter and volunteer for the University.  

But today I have traveled from Berkeley to speak against the administration’s proposed Underhill Project, specifically against the only specific design in the complex that is before you, the Central Dining and Office Facility.  

Berkeley is uniquely blessed by an exhilarating climate and a spectacular physical setting - and by an extraordinary tradition of architects who have been inspired by these natural gifts. Part of the Berkeley experience for any student is this sense of place. This is not Irvine or Davis. It is Berkeley.  

The campus is enmeshed in a dense urban fabric, a city of houses, with a very special character, a fabric that the university tore apart in the middle of the last century. The festering sore of People’s Park and the gaping hole of the Underhill parking lot stand as daily witnesses to the havoc the University planners can unleash. It’s time for the University to get it right.  

Can you visualize the great buildings that, from its beginning, have defined the Underhill neighborhood: the Anna Head School complex from 1892, directly across the street, and Maybeck’s First Church of Christ, Scientist from 1910, a stone’s throw down Bowditch. One is on the National Register and the other is a National Landmark.  

Are you honestly willing to yoke these remarkable buildings with the severe glass walls and arcing roof lines of the Central Dining and Office facility, more reminiscent of an airport or a shopping mall? The university’s planners pay lip service to the idea of architectural context but often, as in this case, ignore it.  

The project description distributed at a recent open house is an insult to the intelligence of the community.  

Your planners are out of step with other institutions south of the campus, like the Town and Gown Club and the Baptist Seminary that are restoring their treasured buildings or entrepreneurs in recent smaller projects who are sensitive to harmony of scale, rooflines, materials and ornament within their streetscapes.  

Please send your planners back to the drawing boards to find the spirit of Berkeley, to rediscover a sense of place.  

 

Mary Noonan 

Berkeley 

 

 

 

 

Whenever the matter of the Beth El Project is discussed by its proponents, we are subjected to long discourses on what a fine institution this is an how much it does for the community.  

Let us be perfectly clear: This is not the issue. Opponents of the project would concur that Beth El does all those things that we expect of religious institutions, but that does not negate the issues and facts of this project which is being opposed by environmentalists and neighbors alike as a project which it totally inappropriate to the site and harmful to the environment.  

Let us discuss the issues and not cloud them with extraneous appeals to the emotions.  

 

Carol Connolly 

Berkeley 

 

 

 


Private group hosts former Israeli leader

By Judith ScherrDaily Planet Staff
Wednesday November 29, 2000

Some people can’t rent the school district’s Berkeley Community Theater – rap groups, for instance, are barred, according to theater management. 

But there’s no prohibition against visits by controversial political figures. 

Berkeley played host Tuesday night to the former Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu was pinch hitting for Henry Kissinger who was supposed to speak as part of the privately-sponsored Berkeley Speakers Lectures Series. Kissinger reportedly canceled due to a heart attack. 

At noon Superintendent Jack McLaughlin got the word – the state department was insisting on clearing the campus after school. That meant canceling two basketball games, a soccer game, rehearsals for a school play and more. All teachers had to leave campus after school. 

Netanyahu’s visit comes at a critical time, when Palestinian-Israeli tensions are escalating daily.  

“Netanyahu supported building the settlements and the suppression of the Palestinian people,” said Barbara Lubin, executive director of the Middle East Children’s Alliance. “It’s kind of shocking that people would want to go hear Netanyahu, especially at a time when 10,000 young people have been injured in the West Bank and Gaza and close to 300 dead.” 

As soon as Middle East activists from MECA, the American-Arab anti-discrimination Committee, the International Action Center and others – heard the conservative former Israeli official would be in the area, they began organizing the protests that took place outside the theater.  

One of the last to know about the event were the Berkeley police, who called on some two dozen off-duty officers to keep order at the demonstration, said police spokesperson Lt. Russell Lopes. 

“We were not notified,” Lopes said. “One of our officers is a ticket-holder for the event.” That officer informed the department of the speaker and need for added security. 

Jud Owens, Berkeley Community Theater manager, disputed that statement and said the promoter has been working hand in hand with police on security for the event. 

Organizers of the event don’t pay for police. “Taxpayers pay for the cops working overtime,” said Lopes, adding that the department has been asking for years for the sponsors of Community Theater events to be responsible for police presence, when it is needed. 

The organizer in this case is Bruce Vogel, who runs the Berkeley Speakers Lectures Series, the Marin Lecture Series and the Peninsula Lecture Series. 

“I run it, I own it,” Vogel said of the lectures. Contacted Tuesday by the Daily Planet, Vogel said he was too busy getting security for the evening event to discuss the lecture series or why he chose to bring the controversial politician. He promised to discuss these questions at a later date. 

Asked whether a reporter could attend the event, Vogel said “It is closed to the press.” That requirement came from Netanyahu’s agent, he said. 

And if individuals had hoped to catch a glimpse of Netanyahu, they couldn’t buy a ticket to do so. Tickets are purchased at $222 for open seating and $320 for reserved seating in advance for the entire series of eight lectures.. 

Benjamin Netanyahu, former head of the conservative Likud party, quit his post as prime minister in spring of 1999 and gave up his seat in the Knesset, or parliament. 

After that time, Netanyahu turned to the lecture circuit which, as pointed out in an Associated Press article, pays considerably more than the $75,000 annual salary received by parliamentarians, who cannot get paid for their public appearances. 

A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Netanyahu, 52, is the author of “Fighting Terrorism: How Democracies Can Defeat Domestic and International Terrorism (1995).” 

Last month the Berkeley Lecture Series hosted General Wesley K. Clark, the retired Supreme Allied Commander in Europe. 

Many other lecturers involved in the series are not involved in politics at all: Frank McCourt, author of Angela’s Ashes, spoke in September. Neil Armstong and Lily Tomlin are on the schedule for later this year. 

Students displaced from after-school activities stood around watching the San Mateo County Sheriff’s bomb squad bustle in and out of the Community Theater with their K-9 crew. 

The two explosives-detecting German shepherds , Bill and Korhs, eagerly pulled at their short leashes as they were through a side door of the theater. 

San Mateo Sheriff bomb technician Frank Dal Porto followed behind them. “We’re just going to take a sniff around and make sure everything is all right.” 

Some students were taken by surprise. Cody Rose, Elizabeth Jensen and Halley Warren arrived for an afternoon composition class only to find the entire campus had been closed down. “We’ll probably just go to someone’s house to practice,” said Jensen. 

 

John Geluardi of the Daily Planet staff contributed to this report.


Beth El impact decision delayed

John Geluardi Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday November 29, 2000

The Zoning Adjustments Board put off a decision Monday to approve an environmental study on the proposed Beth El project. 

In voting for the delay 7-0-1, board members said they needed the additional time to better understand the document, a Final Environmental Impact Report on the 1301 Oxford St. project, and the implications of its certification or denial. They will vote on the FEIR on Thursday, Dec. 14. 

At that time, the board will vote to either certify the report, deny it or ask Pacific Mutual Consultants, which prepared the document, to conduct additional studies or clarify existing data. ZAB Chair Carolyn Weinberger abstained from the vote and Councilmember Ted Gartner was not present. 

Weinberger cautioned that the board cannot begin to consider the project until the FEIR is approved, and she urged board members to make a decision. 

“We have to certify this information in order to act on the project itself,” Weinberger said. 

Board members said they proceeded carefully regarding the Oxford Street FEIR because of its controversial nature – neighbors have vocally opposed it for over a year – and because they have limited experience in certifying EIRS. They say they are unfamiliar with the subtleties of the document and its impact on the development process. 

The Oxford Street FEIR is a 650-page document that presents a variety of studies on potential impacts caused by the development of a synagogue and school. The proposed, 35,000-square-foot project has drawn fire from neighbors and environmentalist because of possible parking and traffic problems and potential damage to Codornices Creek that runs across the property, partially through a culvert. 

“Can the board certify the FEIR if there are still dangling questions from the community?” said board member James Peterson. “Can the opponents of the board’s decision file a law suit that could affect the Zoning Adjustments Board?”  

Board member Gene Poshman also had a several questions about the order in which the board will consider aspects of the project. “This raises the issue of why we don’t consider the EIR at the same time we consider the project itself,” he said. 

Board member David Blake wondered what methods consultants who prepared the report used in determining that certain alternative proposals are unfeasible. He specifically asked about the possible alternative of an underground parking garage, which was determined by the consultant to be unworkable. 

There was a motion by Board member David Freeman to vote on the report certification and it was seconded by Peterson. But Poshman put forward a substitute motion to reschedule the vote and Peterson who had apparently reconsidered also seconded Poshman’s motion and the certification was delayed.  

“I think it’s great they delayed the vote,” said Juliet Lamont a member of Live Oak Codornices Creek Neighborhood Association which opposes the development. “This EIR is a bad EIR.” 

Lamont said the document falls short of California Environmental Quality Act requirements, which dictate the contents of EIRs. She said among other things the consultants did not look thoroughly at alternate sites and did not consider a smaller development.  

Harry Pollack, former president of the Congregation of Beth El said he was not surprised the board delayed the vote. “I think the questions board members asked were the standard you would get from a board that wants to make the right decision.” 

Pollack added that the amount of information in the report is extraordinary and goes way beyond CEQA’s requirements. 


Shooting investigations ongoing

Daily Planet Staff Reports
Wednesday November 29, 2000

Lt. Russell Lopes describes the series of shootings in the area of 2700 Sacramento Street as a battle between the Hatfields and the McCoys. 

There are shootings, then retaliations, he said. To date, all victims have survived. 

That includes the teenager who had a bullet in the sole of his shoes Monday evening. 

It was about 6 p.m. when a man approached two women and the teen outside an apartment on the 2700 block of Sacramento, Lopes said.  

“The suspect walked in front of the house and shot several times,” Lopes said. The bullets missed the three persons, who may have been the targets. “A ricocheted bullet was embedded in the teen’s shoe.” 

“It’s all part of the ongoing crimes down there,” Lopes said, referring to a series of shootings.  

On Nov. 14 there was a shooting on the 2700 block of Sacramento, at the same address where Monday evening’s shots were fired.  

Police believe that, in retaliation for the Nov. 14 shooting, a person tried to shoot someone stopped at a traffic light on Ward and Sacramento Nov. 20. 

Police believe that the shots fired at the two women and teen Monday evening may have been in response to the Nov. 20 shooting. 

One man was arrested Saturday in connection with the Nov. 20 shooting. He is incarcerated at Santa Rita Jail.


Environmentalists sue to block Cisco building plans

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

Charging that the city of San Jose violated the California Environmental Quality Act, environmentalists and communities to the south sued to block Cisco Systems, Inc.’s 688-acre research park proposed for one of Silicon Valley’s last remaining rural tracts. 

The Sierra Club, the Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society and the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments, representing 18 cities in three counties, claim the environmental impact report for the project did not address all of the project’s possible environmental consequences and that it underestimates the impact on area communities. 

The San Jose City Council in October approved the company’s plans for a $1.3 billion corporate park for 20,000 employees in Coyote Valley in southern San Jose. 

The Sierra Club and Audubon Society contend the Cisco project will threaten endangered animals such as the red-legged frog and will worsen air quality through increased traffic.  

They remain opposed despite the company’s promises to donate $3 million and help raise $97 million more for open-space preservation efforts. 

The lack of housing near the proposed site also raises concerns about increased commute traffic. 

“It’s clear there was an alternative to the city that would have dramatically reduced the impacts, and that alternative was to provide housing,” said Stephan Volker, an attorney representing AMBAG. 

The suits were filed Tuesday in Santa Clara County court. 

David Vossbrink, San Jose’s communications director, said the environmental impact report is adequate and that the project is a good move for the city. 

“I think the proposal for the Cisco development is the opportunity for San Jose to implement the vision for its long-term land use plan implemented 20 years ago,” he said.  

“The environmental impact report that was circulated early this year was reviewed widely and commented on, and those comments were responded to.  

“We believe the project does enjoy widespread public support as an example of smart growth,” he said. 

Salinas city officials had been in talks with the city of San Jose about possible compensation to soften the huge project’s effect – including subsidies for rail, affordable housing and an apprenticeship program in Salinas schools.  

But Tuesday morning the city decided to file a separate suit, saying that the environmental impact report does not address the entire region. 

“We fully expect this will be the first of several projects to come, and we felt this project needs to be the defining project, setting forth regional analysis,” said Salinas City Attorney Jim Sanchez. 

Salinas is a member of AMBAG and is the largest of the southern communities that would be affected by the project. 

Cisco spokesman Steve Langdon said the company intends to see the project through. 

“We are disappointed that these parties have chosen litigation over collaboration,” he said. e have remained willing to work together out of the courts, but we’re also very confident that the city of San Jose will prevail in the courts.”


Cannabis clubs’ future in Supreme Court hands

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

SAN FRANCISCO — Cancer is eating away at Creighton Frost. His lymph glands, thyroid, larynx and much of the muscles on the right side of his body have been removed. Marijuana, he says, is his only comfort. 

Frost used to get the drug from the Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative, a city-sanctioned club that openly challenges the federal government – but conforms to California law – by offering marijuana to people with a doctor’s recommendation. 

The U.S. Supreme Court decided Monday to review whether the club, and perhaps others in states that also have medical marijuana laws, can distribute the drug. 

“I’m dying and falling apart a little bit at a time. I want some way to not have such a miserable death,” said Frost, whose illness forced him to quit leading horseback wilderness tours. 

Frost, who lives in San Ramon, has been forced to get his marijuana illegally since August. That’s when the court ordered the club to cease operations at the request of the Clinton administration. 

The high court is expected to hear the case next year. 

Justice Department lawyers said more than two dozen organizations have been distributing marijuana for medical purposes in California, Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. California first passed a medical marijuana law in 1996. Since then, eight other states have followed. 

Medical marijuana laws also have been passed in Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Maine, Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Colorado. They too could be struck down, depending on how broadly the court considers the case, said Nathan Barankin, spokesman for California Attorney General Bill Lockyer, who unsuccessfully lobbied Attorney General Janet Reno to drop the Supreme Court challenge. 

Jeff Jones, co-founder of the Oakland pot club, said the cooperative has handed out 4,000 identification cards to members who have obtained a doctor’s recommendation to smoke marijuana. 

“We have faith when the Supreme Court hears this case that it will consider the needs of the patients who are suffering,” Jones said. “We hope that it vindicates Californians who have voted on allowing patients to have compassionate access to this medicine and that it vindicates the citizens in the states that have passed compassionate access laws.” 

Generally, the state laws allow sick and dying patients with a doctor’s recommendation to use marijuana by growing it themselves or obtaining it from a so-called “caregiver.” While the laws do not necessarily permit marijuana clubs, states have allowed them if their purpose is for sick and dying patients. 

California, for example, has a hodgepodge of medical marijuana regulations. Some counties require identification cards to legally possess and smoke marijuana. The city of Oakland allows users to possess as much as six pounds, while Butte County allows growers to possess up to 2 pounds. 

Just last week, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration approved a program allowing San Mateo County to give away government-grown marijuana to 60 AIDS patients as part of a first-of-its-kind study to assess the drug’s potential benefits. 

For Frost and other ill patients using marijuana, they say it settles the stomach, builds weight and steadies spastic muscles. Users also speak of relief from PMS, glaucoma, itching, insomnia, arthritis, depression, childbirth and Attention Deficit Disorder. 

The Justice Department, however, told the high court that marijuana has “no currently accepted medical use.” 

Even so, it is unclear whether the nation’s high court will consider solely whether marijuana clubs violate federal law, or whether it will rule on the legality of medical marijuana laws in their entirety. 

“You never know how far they will go in considering issues broadly or narrowly,” said Annette Carnegie, a lawyer for the Oakland club. 

Jim Gonzalez, a lobbyist with Americans for Medical Rights, said a court decision allowing the pot clubs would give a huge boost to the medical marijuana movement. The group is funded by billionaire George Soros, who helped finance many of the nation’s medical marijuana initiatives. 

“That would be the Supreme Court saying medical marijuana is OK,” Gonzalez said. 

A contrary ruling, he predicted, only would bar the pot clubs – not the states’ medical marijuana laws. An appeals court decision allowing the Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative to distribute the drug “threatens the government’s ability to enforce the federal drug laws,” the Justice Department told the high court. In August, the Supreme Court barred the California club from distributing marijuana while the government pursued its appeal. 

 

U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco ruled for the government. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed, ruling that “medical necessity” is a legal defense. 

Breyer is the brother of Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer, who has recused himself from the case. 

The case is U.S. v. Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative, 00-151. 

On the Net: 

For the appeals court ruling in U.S. vs. Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative: http://www.uscourts.gov/links.html and click on 9th Circuit. 


Consumer advocate eyes initiative on deregulation

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

SACRAMENTO — A consumer group outraged at spiraling electric bills wants to put a ballot initiative before voters that would reverse the 1996 law deregulating California’s power industry. 

Harvey Rosenfield of the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights said Tuesday the initiative would place electrical utilities under the authority of a citizens’ review board and set up a public agency to operate the state’s power grid. 

Utilities denounced the plan, saying it would create a new bureaucracy but do little to develop energy supplies. 

“Deregulation can work if all parties – the regulators, the out-of-state generators, the consumer groups, the utilities – work together appropriately,” said Pacific Gas and Electric Co. spokesman Ron Low. 

Rosenfield’s proposal came just days after California’s two largest investor-owned utilities, facing more than $5 billion in losses since May from increases in wholesale electricity costs, sought court permission to pass those costs on to ratepayers. 

The utilities “have now all announced that they intend to force the people of California to pay an additional $5 billion or $6 billion, roughly $200 for every taxpayer in the state to bail them out of a problem that they themselves created,” Rosenfield said. 

California’s 1996 deregulation law was intended to lower rates by boosting competition in the electricity market. It required investor-owned utility monopolies to sell off assets, including power plants, and buy electricity on the open market by March 2002. 

Until the assets are sold, the utilities operate under a rate freeze. After the assets are divested, the rate freeze cap comes off and the utilities can charge their ratepayers market prices. 

San Diego Gas and Electric Co., with 1.2 million customers, was the first, in July 1999, to complete the transition to deregulation. 

When wholesale electricity prices, driven by rising demand and strapped supplies, soared this year, SDG&E passed on the increases to its customers. Bills there doubled, then tripled, sparking a political outcry and state and federal investigations. 

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and Southern California Edison Co., which have 9.7 million customers between them, still operate under a rate freeze but they are trying in the courts and the Public Utilities Commission to remove it.  

The two utilities are unable to pass their costs on to their customers. 

Rosenfield’s proposed ballot initiative also would require refunds to consumers in San Diego and levy a windfall profits tax on power companies that sold energy to utilities at “unjust and unreasonable prices.” 

It would also set up a public agency with authority to build, own and operate power plants, transmission lines and distribution assets. 

“At first glance, he appears to be making some positive points, such as the refunds to San Diego customers,” Low said. “But we don’t think setting up a new bureaucracy is going to help solve the problems.” 

Rosenfield will have 150 days to gather signatures to qualify his measure. A statutory initiative would require 419,260 signatures of registered voters. An amendment to the constitution would require 670,816 signatures. 

On the Net: 

Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights: http://www.consumerwatchdog.org/ 

Pacific Gas and Electric Co.: http://www.pge.com/ 

Southern California Edison Co.: http://www.sce.com/ 

San Diego Gas and Electric Co.: http://www.sdge.com/ 

Public Utilities Commission of California: http://www.cpuc.ca.gov/


Stanford may reserve right to build in foothills

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

SAN JOSE — Stanford University may go ahead with its development plans and reserve the opportunity to build on its nearby foothills, something environmentalists were hoping to prevent. 

Santa Clara County supervisors tentatively approved Stanford’s plan to keep 2,000 acres of open space from development for 25 years. The supervisors focused Monday on the university’s plan instead of another proposal, backed by environmentalists and at least one supervisor, to protect half that land for 99 years. 

Stanford president John Hennessy said the university was “cautiously optimistic” about the tentative approval, while environmentalists said the plan did not go far enough to protect the grassy foothills. 

“I think we have been good stewards of the land, better stewards than our neighbors,” Hennessy said. “I think we can live with this agreement, and we can continue to prosper.” 

Stanford officials opposed the 99-year protection, and even threatened to sue if it was approved, because they said they had no way of accurately determining what the university’s needs would be in 100 years. 

But environmentalists, who wanted permanent protection of the land, argue the university’s plan is not adequate because, if Stanford says it has run out of space under its 10-year plan, the supervisors could vote to allow the university to expand into the hills. 

“We’re very disappointed with the level of protection,” said Denice Dade, legislative advocate for the Committee for Green Foothills. “At a bare minimum, we wanted it held in place for 25 years. Without that, there’s really no incentive to contain development. 

Dade said the group had not yet decided if it will challenge the decision in court. 

Hennessey said the university has no plans to develop the foothills in the next 25 years. 

Stanford’s 10-year plan includes building 3,000 units of housing and 2 million square feet of academic facilities. Stanford officials have said they are at a competitive disadvantage with other universities because high housing costs are pricing prospective faculty and students out of the area. 

The university already reluctantly had agreed to preclude building on 2,000 acres for 25 years, but last month Supervisor Joe Simitian, whose jurisdiction includes Stanford, suggested 1,000 of those acres be set aside for 99 years. 

Simitian said Monday he realized the 99-year plan would not pass the board and offered modifications that allow Stanford to proceed with the 25-year protection plan. 

The changes include zoning hills like the rest of the hillsides in the county; requiring Stanford to submit a plan detailing how it will prevent sprawl and protect certain areas before it applies to build its academic facilities; having Stanford submit a special plan for conservation areas in the 2,000 acres, and requiring the supervisors to approve any changes to the university’s growth boundary with a 4-out-of-5 vote instead of the standard majority of 3-out-of-5 to make changing the boundary more difficult. Simitian said he was pleased with the agreement. 

“I think we’re in a pretty good place,” he said. “My hope is that, in 25 years, Stanford University will still be a premier institution and the hillsides above Junipero Serra Boulevard (the boundary between campus and the foothills) will be protected.” 

The university submitted its plan two years ago, the first time in its 115-year history that it has been required to do so. 

Official approval of the plan should come Dec. 12, when county staff members bring back a final plan that incorporates all the revisions made to Stanford’s plan. 


$710 million wanted by GOP for jails and anti-crime programs

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

SACRAMENTO — Eyeing a projected $10.3 billion state budget surplus, Republican leaders Tuesday proposed spending $710 million on jails, crime labs, law enforcement equipment and prosecution of gun-related crimes. 

The anti-crime money is among a series of GOP budget priorities that will be outlined over the next several weeks and will also include more money for schools, public works projects, social programs and tax cuts. 

“We believe we can increase funding for education, put a significant amount into our long-term infrastructure needs, invest in public safety, (and) the safety net and reduce the tax burden on Californians,” said Senate Minority Leader Jim Brulte, R-Rancho Cucamonga. 

Brulte and Assembly Minority Leader Bill Campbell, R-Villa Park, said the priorities were developed during a three-day postelection retreat in San Diego that included GOP lawmakers from both houses. 

Campbell said that having the two caucuses make joint proposals was something new. 

The two leaders proposed spending: 

• $100 million for law enforcement equipment, including radios, patrol cars, fingerprint scanners and other improvements in technology. The money would be allocated on a per capita basis with each local agency getting at least $150,000. 

• $400 million to build, renovate or expand local jails and juvenile detention facilities, with the 20 counties under court-imposed jail population limits getting the best shot at the money. 

• $200 million to renovate or expand local crime labs. 

• $10 million for grants to district attorneys to investigate and prosecute cases involving illegal possession or use of firearms. 

The proposals are for the fiscal year that starts next July 1. 

The Legislature’s nonpartisan budget analyst, Elizabeth Hill, predicted earlier this month that California’s booming economy would generate a $10.3 billion state surplus by the end of the next fiscal year. 

That projection is expected to trigger a variety of spending proposals. Gov. Gray Davis is scheduled to make his budget requests early in January. 

The Legislature’s Democratic leaders have said the surplus should be used to improve schools, community colleges, transportation, housing and health care programs but they have downplayed the need for new tax cuts. 

When asked why Democrats, who dominate both houses, should pay attention to the GOP proposals, Brulte said, “They make good sense.” 

 

There’s another reason: Even though they lost seats in the last election, Republicans still have enough votes to block approval of a budget bill, which needs two-thirds majorities to pass. 

Paul Hefner, a spokesman for Assembly Speaker Robert Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, said Democrats would probably be receptive to at least some of the GOP crime spending proposals. 

“If you look at a lot of the things they are now making priorities — public safety grants, crime labs — these are things that have been priorities for us going back several years,” he said. 


Alternate in police trial denies hearing juror misconduct

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

LOS ANGELES — An alternate juror in the corruption trial of four police officers told a judge Tuesday she did not hear an alleged statement by the jury foreman that he believed the defendants were guilty before testimony began. 

Claiming the foreman’s alleged remark constituted juror misconduct, defense attorneys are seeking a mistrial in the first case against members of an anti-gang unit at the Los Angeles Police Department’s Rampart station. 

Three officers were convicted Nov. 15 of charges involving framing gang members. The fourth officer was acquitted. 

The alternate, Paola Rojas, testified at a Superior Court hearing about a remark Victor Flores allegedly made after the jury was selected but before he was chosen as foreman. 

Another alternate, Wendy Christiansen, claimed during a previous hearing that Flores made the comment during a lunch with herself and Rojas. Flores denied at a hearing last week that he made such a remark. 

Asked by Judge Jacqueline A. Connor if there was lunchtime talk concerning the officers’ guilt, Rojas said: “No. There was not. If there would have been I would have mentioned it.” 

Defense attorney Harland Braun said after the hearing that the judge has to decide which account to believe. 

Christiansen also has claimed jurors talked about the case during the trial, violating instructions to not discuss the case until deliberations. 

After Rojas’ testimony, the judge schedule a Dec. 15 hearing to deal with the question of juror misconduct. 

The officers were the first members of the now-defunct Rampart anti-gang unit to be tried on charges based on allegations by ex-Officer Rafael Perez, a cocaine thief who accused colleagues of crimes after agreeing to cooperate with investigators in exchange for leniency. Perez did not testify at the trial. 

Prosecutors have had more than 100 criminal cases or convictions dismissed because they were tainted by allegations against Rampart officers. 

In a separate case, two former LAPD Central Division officers pleaded innocent Tuesday to charges they kidnapped a homeless man, drove him to the Los Angeles River and beat him. David Cochrane, 34, and Christopher, 28, were indicted last month for the alleged attack on Delton Bowen in 1997. 

In another case that had been tainted by an allegation of Rampart officer misconduct, a Superior Court official on Monday dismissed a murder charge against a man because his constitutional rights were violated during a preliminary hearing. 

Commissioner Michael G. Price said the judge in Jose Luis Oliverria’s case failed to allow testimony about the weapon being found in another man’s possession. He also noted prosecutors didn’t turn over a taped interview with a key witness. 

The case was already in trouble because the witness kept changing his story.


Researchers defend testing water study on humans

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

LOMA LINDA — The risk a study of a toxic water pollutant poses to its human participants is outweighed by its potential benefit to the general public, doctors conducting the research said Tuesday. 

The Loma Linda University Medical Center researchers held a news conference to respond to media reports raising concerns over the ethics of the study, in which people are being given doses of perchlorate, a chemical used in rocket fuels that has contaminated ground water in parts of Southern California. 

The hospital’s institutional review board, which has oversight of clinical trials, concluded that trial participants would face minimal risk. Researchers said the doses of perchlorate being given in the study are about 100 times lower than those given to people who are prescribed perchlorate for thyroid illnesses. 

Dr. Anthony Firek, the study’s principal investigator, said the dosages given in the study are lower than those given in a study published earlier this year by Harvard University. Nine men received 10 milligrams of perchlorate daily in that study. 

But the daily doses in the Loma Linda study are still up to 83 times higher than drinking-water limits for perchlorate recommended by California’s Department of Health Services. That recommendation – 18 parts per billion – is not enforceable. 

The study has been paid for by Lockheed Martin. Hundreds of lawsuits accuse the aerospace company of creating perchlorate pollution and threatening the health of residents in San Bernardino and Riverside counties. Company officials have said the study will help determine the health risk of perchlorate. 

Researchers said the sponsorship poses no conflict of interest because Lockheed Martin had no influence on the study’s protocol, and because the hospital’s review board will make certain the data will not be misused. 

Barry Taylor, Loma Linda’s vice president for research affairs, said university officials discussed the company’s possible motivations. “But on the other hand,” he said, “people on the committee recognized that they could see medical use coming out of this and they decided to proceed with what they saw as a protocol that would help them medically.” 

The idea for the study came from medical researchers, not Lockheed, and the project has been approved by Loma Linda, Boston University and Jerry L. Pettis Memorial Veterans Administration Medical Center, researchers said. 

“I feel extremely comfortable with the trial. Lockheed provides sponsorship and that’s basically it,” Firek said. 

Firek said the study is being conducted to determine how best to diagnose and treat any illnesses that might arise from perchlorate in drinking water. 

Perchlorate has been used as a rocket-fuel oxidizer since the 1940s, and is thought to have contaminated water supplies in parts of Riverside and San Bernardino counties, as well as the San Gabriel Valley east of Los Angeles. 

In large doses, it can slow down the thyroid, which produces the hormone that controls infants’ brain development and growth in older children. 

In adults, the thyroid regulates a host of body activities, including temperature and blood cholesterol. Some people with thyroid illnesses are prescribed perchlorate to help treat their conditions. 

Firek indicated that doctors treating such patients are seeing some problems they think could be related to perchlorate. A clinical trial is the only way to determine whether that is the case, he said. 

The Loma Linda research is giving participants doses ranging from a half-milligram to three milligrams. Half of the participants get placebos. Medical ethicists have questioned the study because unlike many other clinical trials, the findings cannot help the humans taking part, but could harm them. 

Dr. William Saukel, chairman of Loma Linda’s institutional review board, said although there is no benefit to individual participants, the study likely will produce information beneficial to the population as a whole. 

Only eight people have so far enrolled in the study, which began in early October. Researchers hope to eventually enroll 100 people who each will be paid $1,000 for seven months of participation. 

Researchers tried to fend off allegations that participants are largely poor people, saying they are required to have health insurance and a primary care physician, and that all of the participants so far are either working or have a spouse who is working. 

They added that the university did not advertise the perchlorate study or its payoff. People who respond to general ads for Loma Linda clinical trials can choose the perchlorate study from a list of projects. 

Participants are informed of the risks of the research, which include bone marrow suppression, lessening of white and red blood cell counts and thyroid problems. 

Loma Linda is conducting the study in conjunction with the VA hospital, but no veterans are among the participants. 


Restraining order issued against workers on strike

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

TRACY — Allegations of picket line violence prompted a judge to issue a restraining order against workers striking at the massive warehouse that supplies Safeway stores in three western states. 

A San Joaquin County judge issued the order against Teamsters Local 439 in response to violent acts allegedly committed by striking workers over the weekend. The union is striking for higher wages and to improve working conditions at the warehouse in Tracy, which is owned and operated by Summit Logistics Inc. 

The vast warehouse distributes goods to about 240 Safeway stores in Northern California, Nevada and Hawaii. 

The court order issued Sunday limits the number of pickets at the entrance to 10 and prohibits protesters from committing acts of violence and intimidation. 

The union has broken its promise to engage in peaceful protest, prompting the need for a court order, Summit President Martin Street said Monday. 

Teamsters spokesman Danny Beagle dismissed the order, saying it wouldn’t hamper the union’s presence at the warehouse. 

Protesters threw rocks at vehicles over the weekend, according to the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Office. On Saturday, a man identified as a Teamster was arrested on suspicion of throwing a rock at a car and injuring someone inside. 

Workers also attempted to drag a Summit supervisor from his car as he was coming to work Friday, Summit officials said. 

Beagle said that union members threw rocks but that nobody was dragged from a car. 

Teamsters representatives have condemned violence committed by union members but have maintained that the protests have been largely peaceful.


Gore ‘simply wrong’

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

George W. Bush’s point man in Florida argued Tuesday it was “wrong, simply wrong” for Al Gore to claim that thousands of votes have never been counted in the state’s bitterly contested presidential election. The vice president said so anyway, and asked a state court to oversee a hurry-up manual recount of thousands of ballots. 

“Seven days, starting tomorrow, for a full and accurate count of all the votes,” the vice president said. “Once we have that full and accurate count of the ballots cast, then we will know who our next president is and our country can move forward.” 

Republicans said it was already clear who had won – the Texas governor, meeting with aides in Austin to discuss a transition to the White House. 

Bush was certified the winner of Florida’s 25 electoral votes on Sunday by GOP Secretary of State Katherine Harris, a declaration that would give him enough support in the Electoral College to become the nation’s 43rd president. At the heart of the legal contest, and the public sparring between the two campaigns, was a dispute over thousands of ballots in Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties on which voting machines failed to read a vote for president. 

“Thousands of votes still have not been counted,” Gore told reporters outside the vice president’s mansion. 

The legal thicket grew denser three weeks after Election Day: 

• Judge N. Saunders Saul, hearing Gore’s formal challenge to the Florida results, set a late afternoon hearing on the vice president’s request for a court-appointed master to manually recount an estimated 13,000 contested ballots from Palm Beach and Miami-Dade. 

• The Bush legal team, in written arguments filed with the U.S. Supreme Court, challenged the validity of manual recounts undertaken in four Florida counties at Gore’s request. 

• Gore’s own legal brief urged the nine justices to avoid involvement in the controversy. “Principles of federalism counsel strongly against interference by this court,” his lawyers wrote in papers filed in Washington. 

• A circuit judge in Seminole County, hearing arguments on a Democratic lawsuit challenging thousands of ballots, ordered the case to proceed. 

• And a conservative legal organization, Judicial Watch, was allowed to review some questionable ballots in Palm Beach after threatening to file a lawsuit, raising Gore concerns about the integrity of some of the very ballots that are at the heart of the Democrat’s legal challenge. 

Yet another interested party, the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature, was taking a step toward a special session that could result in appointment of its own slate of electors. A special joint committee met for the first time to discuss election issues. 

With opinion polls indicating limited public patience for a protracted struggle, Gore and running mate Joseph Lieberman made the point that they hope the contest is settled by Dec. 12, the date for final selection of the state’s electors. 

That is “our hope,” Lieberman said as he made the rounds of morning television programs. 

It was also the timetable that Gore’s lawyers laid out in court, and that the vice president discussed in public remarks. His side envisioned a court ruling by Saul on Dec. 6, followed by a few days to allow an appeal to the state Supreme Court. 

“I understand that this process needs to be completed in a way that is expeditious, as well as fair,” Gore said. “We cannot jeopardize an orderly transition of power to the next administration, nor need we do so.” 

Bush spent his day in Texas on Tuesday, meeting with his aides, after serving notice on Monday he wanted the keys to the government’s transition office — a request the Clinton administration rebuffed. 

Even so, Andy Card, Bush’s pick to serve as his chief of staff, said the Texas governor might start meeting with prospective Cabinet members “later this week.” He would not discuss names or a timetable. Aides said it was possible that Bush would meet with some candidates at his ranch. 

Public opinion polls pointed to an uphill climb for the vice president A CNN-USA Today-Gallup survey, released just before Gore spoke, showed 56 percent of those polled believe the vice president should concede, and 38 percent believed he should not. A Washington Post poll yielded about the same result. 

Congressional Democratic leaders have emphatically thrown their support behind Gore’s appeal for patience while his court challenge plays out. One Southern Democrat, Rep. Bud Cramer, D-Ala., issued a statement during the day saying, “The time has come for this to come to a close.” 

“It is my hope that both of these men will put the good of the country first,” he added in a statement that mentioned neither Bush nor Gore by name. 

Republican running mate Dick Cheney was on the talk show circuit as well as Lieberman, making the case that Bush needed all the time available for his transition, especially given the time spent on recounting votes in Florida. 

“It’s time to wrap this up that we’ve had the election, we’ve had the count, we’ve had the recount now we’ve had the certification of George W. Bush as the winner,” Cheney said on NBC’s “Today” show. 

He said the Bush team is “rapidly running out of time to put together that new administration.”


Bush considers Democrats for Cabinet

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

AUSTIN, Texas — George W. Bush is “on track” in planning a new government, one that would include Democrats in key positions, aides suggested Tuesday. Still, continuing legal clouds subdued some of Bush’s optimism. 

“We are now in uncharted waters,” said Bush spokeswoman Karen Hughes. “We’re in an unprecedented period where a presidential candidate is going to court essentially to try to contest and overturn the results of an election that has now been certified.” 

She told reporters during an afternoon briefing at campaign headquarters that Bush continues to insist he not be called “president elect” because of the current court challenges by Democratic rival Al Gore. 

“The governor has asked us all to be humble and to be gracious,” she said. 

“We are mindful of the fact that the vice president...a little more than an hour ago reiterated that he is continuing in court to challenge the legitimate outcome of the election,” she said after Gore discussed his continuing battle in a nationally televised appearance. 

Bush also visited the headquarters Tuesday but steered clear of a roomful of reporters who came to attend the Hughes briefing. Instead, he greeted campaign staff members and volunteers. Bush then prepared to spend the next few days on his ranch in Crawford, about a two-hour drive north of here. Since Election Day, Bush has divided his time between the governor’s mansion here and the secluded 1,500-acre ranch. 

Running mate Dick Cheney, who is overseeing transition planning, was to join in at the ranch later in the week. 

“They will be discussing transition efforts,” said Ari Fleischer, Bush’s transition spokesman. 

But Bush aides said that it appears unlikely that Bush will name any prospective Cabinet appointments before the Supreme Court has a chance to hear the case Friday. 

Colin Powell, Bush’s known choice to be secretary of state, was reluctant to participate in any such announcement while so many legal issues remain to be resolved, aides said. 

Still, Bush pressed ahead in planning behind the scenes for a transition to power, meeting on Tuesday first at his residence and later at his state capitol office with Andrew Card, his prospective White House chief of staff. 

Card later told reporters that the two discussed prospective appointments — and that some candidates for top Bush jobs might be brought to Texas later this week. 

Asked about whether Bush could meet a Jan. 4 timetable suggested by Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott to begin confirmation hearings, Card said, “Obviously, we want to have names presented such that they can be considered by the Senate. We’re on track.” 

Card said that Bush clearly intends to reach out to Democrats in forming a government because of the closeness of the election. But he refused to respond to a question on whether former Sen. Sam Nunn, D-Ga., was among those Democrats being considered. 

Nunn, former chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, was viewed as a possible Bush choice for defense secretary. 

“He had Democrats serving in his administration in Texas, as well as Republicans,” Card earlier told CNN. “And I think you can expect him to do the same in leading the country.” 

Cheney said much the same thing earlier Tuesday when he appeared on NBC’s “Today” Show. 

“The governor has given me instructions to look in those areas,” he said. “We clearly will.” 

The Texas governor, meanwhile, picked up one of the trappings of the presidency: a promise from the Clinton White House for daily national security briefings. 

Such CIA briefings, with Gore currently gets as vice president, were promised in a Monday evening phone call between Card and the man he would replace: White House chief of staff John Podesta. 

Podesta said he and Card “discussed how we could move forward.” 

White House press secretary Jake Siewert said Podesta and Card had a “cordial” conversation. 

“John offered to meet with him and offered to meet with him either with the vice president’s transition staff or separately,” Siewert said. “We’ll be happy to arrange such a meting to give them an overview of where we are in the transition.” 

While supporting the federal General Services Administration’s decision against releasing funds or office space to Bush for a transition, Siewert said the White House was waiting for the Justice Department to complete a formal written opinion on the Presidential Transition Act. 

Siewert said the transition coordinating council, which the president created by executive order, was expected to meet Wednesday to help the next president ease into office. He also said that national security adviser Sandy Berger would follow up with the Bush team to arrange Bush’s daily national security briefings. 

The Secret Service, like the GSA, was not ready to acknowledge any winner. Officials said the Secret Service was proceeding with “parallel” transition operations — giving both the Democratic and Republican tickets the same training sessions, briefings, and help securing personal property for the move into the White House or vice presidential residence at the Naval Observatory. 

Bush also placed a call to incoming Mexican president Vincente Fox on Tuesday to congratulate him in advance of his Dec. 1 inauguration, aides said. 


Water pollutant warning came 10 years ago

John Geluardi Daily Planet Staff
Tuesday November 28, 2000

The vice president of WRE Color Tech, who is responsible for the chrome 6 plume beneath the partially-constructed West Berkeley Skate Park, is curious about why the site at Fourth and Harrison streets was chosen for the park. 

Construction of the park, adjacent to a new soccer field – not in use during the winter months – was halted Friday. 

In 1990 Bill MacKay, vice president and part owner of WRE Color Tech, an engraving company, went to city officials and alerted them about a storage tank on the company’s property, contaminated in the 1980s from chrome plating. Since that time, the company has spent nearly $1 million cleaning up and monitoring the contamination. 

“We went to the city in 1990 and have worked with them every step of the way,” MacKay said. “We have an obligation here.” 

Among other uses, chrome 6, or hexavalent chrome, is an odorless chemical used for hardening steel and making paint pigments. The compound is commonly used in aeronautic manufacturing and in electroplating shops. 

Chrome 6 is a carcinogen, made famous in the film “Erin Brokovich.” It is hazardous when inhaled or ingested. There is no evidence that there is a risk of human contact in the Harrison Street plume. According to county and local agencies, the effected groundwater is not used as a water source for any purpose. Tests are still being conducted to determine if the soil excavated for the skate bowls is contaminated. 

For MacKay, the first step in cleaning up the property was to hire Secor International, a Concord-based environmental engineering company, to test the extent of the problem. Then he worked with the city to find the best way to remediate the situation.  

It was decided the clean up would be carried out in three phases. The plan was to first address the plume’s source and then take care of the plume. 

The first phase was to remove the tanks from which the contaminants were leaked into the soil. The second phase was to remove soils around the tanks and around any pipes, most of which were beneath a six-inch concrete slab, that may have carried contaminated liquids. The third phase would be cleaning up the contamination that had reached groundwater. 

After the first two phases were completed in 1999, WRE had spent approximately $750,000 and there was still the 700 foot plume of contaminated groundwater to deal with. 

In 1996 MacKay hired Stellar Environmental Solutions, a Berkeley company that had experience remediating chrome 6 contamination. The company began keeping information gathered from wells sunk at various sites around the plume in order to monitor the toxicity and direction in which the plume was moving.  

In 1997 it was decided by Berkeley’s Toxics Management Division, based on information provided by SES, to pursue a non-aggressive cleanup plan. Once it was determined the contaminated groundwater was not coming in contact with humans and would not unless there were excavation projects over or near the plume, it was decided to let the chrome 6 naturally convert to chrome 3, a safer form of chromium. Chrome 6 is known to convert over time to chrome 3 when it is left in the ground, city officials said. The plan was given five years to show progress. 

“This is a big plume,” MacKay said. “It wasn’t feasible to be more aggressive with remediation because of the size and the city agreed.” According to Richard Makdisi an environmental engineer with SES, the contaminated water had been showing signs of improving according to the five-year plan. 

Geoffery Fieldler, a hazardous materials specialist with Berkeley’s Toxics Management Division, said WRE and MacKay have been cooperative at every step of the process.  

Under a risk management plan, MacKay agreed to continue monitoring the plume and provided information, compiled by SES, to the city every six months. In addition he agreed to provide “De-watering” for any projects that required excavation in the plume area – pumping the water into holding tanks. Monitoring the plume cost WRE another $150,000. With the cost incidentals and one de-watering project MacKay estimates WRE has put in $1 million. 

MacKay said he was never notified about the excavation at the skate park as he should of been according to the Risk Management Plan. 

“We want this thing cleaned up. The expertise and attention we’ve put in trying to fix what we’ve done shows that,” MacKay said. 

In fact, it was MacKay who brought the potential hazard to Makdisi’s attention, who in turn alerted Fielder of the Toxics Management Division. Makdisi and Fielder took tests the following day that showed contamination at the construction site. 

The history of the plume and the city’s extensive knowledge of it raises many questions about how the skate park, which required excavation, was approved. Makdisi said the city has received reports on samples taken from a groundwater monitoring well 40 feet from the skate park site that has been showing signs of chrome 6 contamination on a regular basis since November of 1996. 

Nabil Al-Hadithy, supervisor of the Toxics Management Division said there were a number of tests done on the 6.4 acre site prior to the development of the soccer field and skate park but chrome 6 was never detected. 

Several officials, however, have admitted there was no testing done specifically for chrome 6.  

Lisa Caronna, director of Berkeley’s Parks and Waterfront Department, said she was completely unaware of the chrome 6 plume in the area. 

Acting City Manager Weldon Rucker and Deputy City Manager Phil Kamlarz did not return phone calls before press time.  


Calendar of Events & Activities

Tuesday November 28, 2000


Tuesday, Nov. 28

 

Blood Pressure for Seniors 

9:30 - 11 a.m.  

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Call Maggie or Suzanne, 644-6107 

 

Read a Play Together Salon 

7:30 - 10:30 p.m. 

Whymsium  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies.  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

Lavender Lunch 

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. 

Pacific School of Religion  

1798 Scenic Ave.  

Mudd 100 

PSR adjunct faculty member Mark Wilson and PSR alumna Lynice Pinkard will speak on “Heterosexism and Racism.” Sponsored by PSR’s Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry. Free Call 849-8206 


Wednesday, Nov. 29

 

Making Marriage Work 

(event is 10 Wednesdays, Nov. 29 - Jan. 24) 

7:30 - 9:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay, Berkeley 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

For Jewish and interfaith couples either considering marriages, engaged or recently married. Focusing on topics to improve the relationship and bridging religious and ethnic differences to strengthen the marriage.  

$360 per couple Call 704-7475 

 

Wanderlust: Tales of  

Adventure and Romance 

7:30 p.m.  

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave. (at Rose) 

Jeff Greenwald and other travel writers discuss the art of writing travel literature and how to make a living doing it.  

Call 843-3533 

 

Berkeley Gray Panthers  

Membership Meeting 

1:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Discussion of how the election results will affect the Gray Panthers.  

Call 548-9696 

Mental Health Commission 

6:30 p.m. 

2640 MLK Jr. Way (at Derby) 

 

Challenges of Parenting Adolescents  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

This workshop focuses on the challenges facing parents and teens. Learn how to avoid triggering and pushing each other’s buttons. Runs three consecutive Wednesdays, through Dec. 13. Led by Kathy Langsam, MA, MFT, JFCS Teen Services Coordinator.  

$60 

Call 704-7475 


Thursday, Nov. 30

 

Pro Arts Juried Show  

Reception 

6 - 8 p.m.  

Pro Arts 

461 Ninth St.  

With the work of 70 artists, this annual show features the work of emerging and mid-career artists. The show runs through December 30. See A&E calendar for details.  

 

Snowshoeing Basics  

7 p.m . 

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Professional snowshoe guide Cathy Anderson-Meyers gives basic instruction on how to get out and experience Tahoe’s winter terrain on “shoes.”  

Call 527-4140 

 

Art for Sale 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Kala Art Institute  

1060 Heinz Ave.  

Over sixty artists affiliated with the Kala Art Institute exhibit works ranging from traditional wood block prints to works in digital media. During the reception, artists will offer 10 percent off the sale of their prints. 549-2977 

 

Oakland Museum Trip for  

Seniors 

(trip on Dec. 8) 

A trip to the Oakland Museum to see the Imperial Palace of China Exhibit. Organized by the North Berkeley Senior Center 

Call Maggie, 644-6107 

 

Let Your Chi Flow Freely  

7 p.m.  

University of Creation Spirituality 

2141 Broadway Ave. 

Oakland 

Share peace and tranquillity communally and regain harmony and balance.  

Call Idris Hassan, 835-4827 x31  

 

Witness In Our Time 

7 p.m.  

105 North Gate Hall 

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism 

Center for Photography 

Kerry Tremain moderates a conversation with Wayne Miller, Ken Light, Matt Heron and Michelle Vignes. Followed by a book signing for “Chicago’s South Side” by Wayne Miller and “Witness in Our Time” by Ken Light. 

Call 642-3383  

 


Friday, Dec. 1

 

Spanish Book Club 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody’s Books  

2454 Telegraph Ave.  

A discussion of “Dona Barbara” by the Colombian writer Rumulo Gallegos. New members welcome. The group meets the first Friday of each month. Call 601-0454  

 

Taize Worship Services  

7:30 - 8:30 p.m.  

Loper Chapel  

Dana St. (between Durant & Channing) 

Call 848-3696 

 

Basic Electrical Theory 

7 - 10 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Redwood Kardon, retired City of Oakland building inspector and author of the Code Check book series.  

$35 Call 525-7610 


Saturday, Dec. 2

 

Wild About Books? 

10:30 a.m. 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

Storyteller Kellmar draws from her African-American roots with stories that touch the heart and the funnybone. For childen aged 3-7. 

Call 649-3943  

 

Whymsium Anniversary Party 

7:30 - 11 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. This annual party features a talent show, games and a dance.  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

UC Botanical Holiday Plant Sale 

10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden  

200 Centennial Dr.  

You’ll find a selection of orchids, ferns, rhododendrons, cacti, hardy herbs, and house plants galore for yourself or gardening friends.  

Call 643-2755 

 

Native American Flute  

5 - 6 p.m. 

Gathering Tribes Gallery  

1573 Solano Ave.  

Celebrating the release of his CD “Spirit Within,” Berkeley resident and flutist Walter Ogi Johnson performs.  

 

Finding a Way In 

7 - 9 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Offering a safe space for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender jews to express personal concerns and to find a place to belong in the Jewish community.  

$5 with pre-registraiton; $7 at door  

845-6420 

 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public.  

All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Know Your Rights Training 

11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

Copwatch Office  

2022 Blake St.  

Learn what your rights are in dealing with the police. Learn how to monitor the police safely.  

Call 548-0425 

 

Publish Your Own Book 

10 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Regent Press 

6020-A Adeline St. 

Mark Weiman of Regen Press presents an overview of the business of book publishing oriented towards the author considering self-publishing.  

$60 per person 

Call Mark Weiman, 547-7602 

 

Friends of Berkeley Youth Alternatives 

Wine Tasting  

1 - 4 p.m. 

Rosenblum Cellars 

2900 Main St.  

Alameda 

All proceeds benefit the children and families served by Berkeley Youth Alternatives. 

$25 Call 845-9010 

 

Alternative Building Materials 

10 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Seminar taught by architects Dan Smith and John Fordice. 

$75 Call 525-7610 


Sunday Dec. 3

 

Connecting with Nature 

1 - 3 p.m.  

Rotary Nature Center  

600 Bellevue Ave. (at Perkins) 

Oakland 

Children aged six to twelve, accompanied by a parent, are invited to explore nature with all their senses. Cathy Holt, author of “The Circle of Healing” will lead the event. Free 

Call Stephanie for reservations, 238-3739 

— compiled by  

Chason Wainwright 

 

 

 

Transcending Limits on Knowledge  

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place 

Lee Nichol on Tarthang Tulku’s “Time, Space, and Knowledge.” Free 

843-6812 

 

Richmond Holiday Arts Festival 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

Richmond Art Center 

2540 Barret Ave.  

Richmond 

A silent auction, craft sale, gifts and services auction, and hands-on art projects. Proceeds benefit the Richmond Art Center. Free  

620-6772 

 

Kitka’s “Wintersongs Holiday Tour” 

7 p.m. 

Lake Merritt United Methodist Church 

1330 Lakeshore Ave. 

Oakland 

In it’s first annual winter holiday concert, this women’s vocal ensemble will perform Eastern European seasonal songs.  

$15 - $20 

444-0323 

 

Winterfest 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

A celebration of winter family traditions like music, dance, craft activities, and food. Included in museum admission. 

$6 general, $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Joe Raskin & David Slusser’s  

Improv Derby 

7:48 p.m. 

Tuva Space 

3192 Adeline (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Joe Raskin/George Cremaschi Duo & David Slusser’s Improv Derby. Part of ACME Observatory Contemporary Music Series.  

$8 suggested donation 

Call 444-3595 

 


Monday, Dec. 4

 

Personnel Board Meeting 

7 p.m.  

Permit Center 

2118 Milvia St.  

First Floor Conference Room 

 

Youth Commission 

6 p.m. 

Martin Luther King, Jr. Youth Center 

1730 Oregon St. 

 

Landmarks Preservation Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

North Berkely Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Peace and Justice Commission 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Keeping Parents Sane 

6:30 - 8:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services  

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

If your child(ren) are defiant and oppositional and you don’t know what to do, try this workshop led by Liz Marton, MFT.  

$20 

Call 704-7475 

 

Criminalization of Youth 

7:30 p.m. 

King Middle School  

1781 Rose St.  

Angela Davis, educator, activist, and former political prisoner speaks at this benefit lecture for the Niebyl-Proctor Marxist Library.  

$5 

Call 595-7417  

 

Make a Wreath 

7 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

Furniture Making for Women 

9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Finish carpenter Tracy Weir teaches this hands-on, four day workshop, culminating with each attendee building her own cabinet unit with drawer and shelf. Runs through Dec. 8.  

$475  

Call 525-7610 

 


Tuesday, Dec. 5

 

Design the Perfect School  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Ave. (at Rose) 

Informally led by Robert Berend, former UC Extension lecturer, this group aims to have intelligent discussions on a wide range of topics. They stress that there is no religious bent to the discussions and that all viewpoints are welcome. Bring light snacks to share with group.  

Call Robert Berend, 527-5332  

 

Jewish Book Club 

7:30 - 9:15 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center  

1414 Walnut St.  

Join in a discussion of Brian Norton’s “Starting Out in the Evening.” Free 

848-0237 x 127 

 

Get the Lead Out 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Frances Albrier Center 

San Pablo Park  

2800 Park St.  

Learn how to prevent lead poisoning in your home. Taught by expert staff, this course offers techniques property owners can use to safety paint and remodel their homes.  

Call 567-8280 

 

Make a Wreath 

7 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

City Council 

7 p.m. 

Old City Hall  

2134 MLK Jr. Way 

 

Compiled by Chason Wainwright 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Letters to the Editor

Tuesday November 28, 2000

Post Proposition 36: what will happen to the incarcerated? 

 

Editor: 

 

Now that two-thirds of the California electorate has mandated treatment rather than a sentence of incarceration for a first or second conviction for illegal drug possession and/or usage one must ask: What now happens to those already incarcerated solely for illegal drug possession and/or usage? 

 

As written, the U.S. Constitution forbade all ex-post facto law.  

 

That stricture was early wiped out for civil law, but it still applies to criminal law. However, unless I am ill-informed, we shall now have “ex-post facto punishment” in a “Catch-22” situation somewhat analogous to that of death-row innocents who cannot hope to save themselves, because DNA tests are in applicable to their cases or necessary evidence has been destroyed. 

 

Must those now rotting in jails and prisons in California solely for first and second-time illegal drug usage and/or possession secure lawyers and put through appeals for their release?  

 

Can the courts that sentenced them order their immediate release, (If so, in many cases would they?) or will Governor Davis have to do the right thing and sign a blanket pardon? 

 

Clarification in your pages would be appreciated.  

 

Judith Segard Hunt 

Berkeley 

 


Center provides seniors healthy fare

By Lisa Daniels Special to the Daily Planet
Tuesday November 28, 2000

The bill of fare is both healthy and gourmet: baked chicken, lamb, salmon, steamed vegetables and fruit. To drink, there is natural fruit juice and spring water. Everything is cooked with herbs, free of salt and animal fat.  

Chez Panisse? 

Not quite. 

For a donation of $2, senior citizens can enjoy this cuisine three days a week at the New Light Senior Center. 

And it’s more than a meal. From Wednesday through Friday, diners are greeted with a smiling face and enjoy gracious fellowship as they savor the home cooking.  

New Light’s Executive Director Jacqueline Debose prides the center’s success on its team effort.  

“Everyone does everything,” said Debose. “The backbone is our volunteer staff, who does everything – shopping, food prep, cooking, room set-up and serving.”  

Maudelle Shirek, Berkeley’s vice mayor and New Light co-founder, is one of those volunteers. She said she is confident seniors are being nourished when they eat at the facility. She should know – she does much of the food selection herself. 

“If seniors come to New Light, they have a good meal.” Shirek said. “All of the food is fresh with no preservatives. We receive our donations from Daily Bread, Berkeley Farmer’s Market and Berkeley Bowl.” 

Shirek attributes growing up on a southern farm with a bounty of fruits, vegetables and lean meats to her vision of starting the New Light Senior Center’s meals program.  

“I was brought up on a farm with fresh fruits and vegetables,” said Shirek. “I took a Home Economics course at the University of Arkansas that taught canning, growing and preserving. My father taught me to be curious and to always continue to learn something new.”  

She also urges the elderly to learn more about how nutrition affects their bodies and their general health. The goal of New Light’s nutrition program is to keep seniors healthy.  

“I want to continue with good, nutritional food and would like more (community) participation with our program,” Shirek said.  

When Executive Director Debose speaks of Maudelle Shirek, she reflects on their long friendship with pride.  

“When I think of Maudelle – and I’ve known her for 25 years – I can tell you this: She is my inspiration. My commitment is to do a good job for her.”  

New Light’s existence spans three decades. Ray Thomas, who delivers the meals for New Light, sees his duties as a labor of love, in which he gets as much as he gives.  

“I enjoy helping the seniors,” Thomas said. “By delivering the meals to them, not only am I doing a service to seniors and the disabled, but to myself as well.”  

Jacqueline Debose would like to see a larger center with an area expansion of 700 meals served daily. 

“We are outgrowing our space”, said Debose. “I foresee a larger facility with a state of the art kitchen. I also want to expand Meals on Wheels to seven days and have corporations and individuals sponsoring the feeding of a senior for one month.”  

She knows the goal may be difficult to achieve, but Debose says she’s ready to “I will tell you no lies, I won’t claim any easy victories, but the struggle continues.” 

New Light Senior Center is located at 2901 California St. For more information, or to participate in the monthly sponsoring of a senior’s meals, please call 549-2666.


Senior centers accessible in Berkeley

By Helen Rippier Wheeler Special to the Daily Plan
Tuesday November 28, 2000

What makes an older person a senior citizen? “Older” than whom? 

Our city’s senior centers set the bar at 55 and welcome everyone that age and older. Berkeley boasts three city-sponsored senior centers open Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m. plus at least five others. 

In 1966, 20 seniors gathered in two rented rooms at 1849 University Ave. to dedicate the city’s first senior center. 

A cadre of volunteers, Portable Meals, the Japanese Seniors Program and minibus service quickly followed. In 1974 Henry Ramsey led a task force to plan and apply for federal funds to build the first senior center, and in 1979, the North Berkeley Senior Center opened – a 22,000 square feet, two-story building on a corner plot in the heart of Berkeley.  

The NBSC’s programs and services have so prospered that it has become known as one of the most innovative and active centers in the Bay Area, attracting seniors from throughout Berkeley as well as the region. It even attracts international visitors and their leaders. Its Alternative Lifelong Learning program brings senior faculty and emeriti professors as speakers. Staff and volunteers annually produce a free Seniors’ Resource Guide. Exercise classes are the most popular at the NBSC – tai chi, line dance, tap dance, aerobics, yoga, dance practice. There are also trips, current events, Internet, literature.  

Now 21 years old, the building is experiencing problems associated with aging! Transportation is another problem: parking is limited in the NBSC’s small lot and AC Transit has cut back the No.15 bus which runs to the NBSC’s door. Paratransit and taxis are not dependable.  

The public is welcomed at meetings of the Berkeley Commission on Aging, which currently meets at the NBSC the third Wednesday of each month at 1:30 p.m.  

South Berkeley 

South Berkeley Senior Center opened in 1972 in the McGee Avenue Baptist Church. It also provides a variety of free classes and social events attracting seniors of diverse backgrounds and interests. Computer technology and exercise classes are currently the most popular. The variety of services and programs, door-to-door outreach by staff, word-of-mouth, and the newsletter get people out to the SBSC. Social events include a professional band for birthday parties, and table and card games. Daily television viewing and weekly movies are held in the viewing room. Travel adventures are carefully planned with the best possible rates.  

The Mercy Brown Bag Program is based at the SBSC, providing free groceries to Berkeley’s low-income seniors twice monthly. The City’s Office of Seniors Programs Office is located in SBSC library.  

West Berkeley Senior Center 

In 1990 West Berkeley Senior Center celebrated its tenth anniversary in its present location. It too offers a variety of free activities including billiards, bridge, whist, dominoes, pinochle, scrabble and bingo. Free health screenings include monthly blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes checks. Tests are also conducted for ear, eye, and foot problems. Special shows, presentations and cultural events are featured for Chinese New Year, Black History Month, Cinco de Mayo, Older Americans Month, birthdays and Christmas.  

All the city centers offer hot lunches, celebrations, educational programs and van service. 

Each Center has a large multipurpose room with a stage, TV lounge, library, billiard rooms, and a parking lot. All are wheelchair accessible. Multilingual-multicultural staffs provide counsel and referral in legal matters, taxes, Social Security benefits, housing, and health insurance. They are supported by volunteers and a peer-elected Advisory Council and produce a monthly newsletter.  

 

Senior Power runs monthly in the Daily Planet. Dr. Helen Wheeler invites comments and suggestions to: pen136@inreach.com. She is a member of the Alameda County Advisory Commission on Aging, North Berkeley Senior Center Advisory Council, Berkeley Housing Authority, and is a former Vice Chair for Berkeley Commission on Aging. 

 

 

 

• North Berkeley Senior Center 1901 Hearst, corner MLK, 94709. 644-6107. Suzanne Ryan, director. No. 15 AC bus. 

• South Berkeley Senior Center, 2939 Ellis, corner Ashby 94703. 644-6109. Silver Ward, director. No. 6 AC bus. 

• West Berkeley Senior Center, 1900 6th St., 94710. 644-6036. Larry Taylor, director. No. 9 AC bus. 

Other senior centers located in Berkeley are: 

• Berkeley/Richmond Jewish Community Center, 1414 Walnut, 94709. 848-0237 

• Chinese Senior Center, 2117 Acton, 94702. 548-5259 

• Japanese-American Services of East Bay, 2126 Channing Way 94704. 848-3560 

• New Light Senior Center, 2901 California 94703 549-2666 

• St. John’s Senior Center, 2727 College Av. 94704. 845-6830 

http://www.ci.berkeley.ca.us/hhs/commsvc/seniors/  


Gay history exhibit mostly unnoticed

Rachelle A. Jones Special to the Daily Planet
Tuesday November 28, 2000

A huge poster of the Berkeley Golden Bear adorns the wall of the Bernice Layne Brown Gallery on the UC Berkeley Campus. But the bear’s not rooting for Cal’s football team. 

“Gay Power” reads a button on his furry chest, and that’s exactly what this Golden Bear is promoting in the gallery’s current exhibit, “The Personal Was Political.” 

“We tried to do things to catch people’s attention,” said William Benemann, who conceptualized and headed the exhibit’s creation. Benemann, a UC law librarian, said the exhibit is for students, to make them aware that “the gay movement did not start last year – it had roots before some of them were even born.” 

But the exhibit’s location in the main entrance of the Doe Library, is little more than a walkway for busy students en route to other destinations said Brian Hu, a security attendant working at a desk near the exhibit. 

Like most exhibits in the busy hallway at Doe Library, the main campus library across from Wheeler Auditorium, he said, “Only a certain few who know about it who come and really spend time. But most are looking at it – not in depth – they just observe it.” 

The history of the gallery space, however, earns more compliments than criticism. “In the past, people have felt that it was a really important place to make an exhibit,” said Tom Leonard, interim librarian. 

In fact, when in 1978 a university chancellor decided to move an exhibit on Armenian Genocide from the Brown Gallery to Sproul Plaza because of controversy, Armenian students fought to keep the exhibit in the library. 

“It’s traditionally a very honored space,” Leonard said. “It’s not a museum lit space, but it’s a very handsome space. You don’t want to put something in a back room – it should be part of a normal working day for all of us using the library.” 

While the library is open, students, faculty, staff and group tours pass through the small foyer. For any one day at least 1,000 different people pass through the gallery space. 

It’s an attempt, Benemann said, to show that “not only was there political organizing and social work, but also what a fun and exciting time it was. I mean people tend to forget that it was a very exciting time here on campus.” 

But today many of the exhibit’s viewers seemed too busy to notice the excitement. 

A student stopped to tie her shoe in front of a case from the exhibit, and a photograph of two men – one in feminine clothing – caught her eye. She didn’t stay long – just enough time to tighten the laces, but she glanced around at the objects in the case before continuing down the corridor. 

Another student among a crowd of friends looked at the Golden Bear and announced, “What? Are we at a gay university now?” 

Small groups of students wandered past the exhibit, stopping to grab a handful of postcards as souvenirs before continuing out of the library. And a few individuals paused to read the quotes on the cases and the relics of the movement that took hold of Berkeley’s campus in the seventies. 

“With any exhibit, most people are only going to look for a minute,” said Cecilia O’Leary, a professor at California State University at Monterey who has curated and designed historical exhibits for the Smithsonian. In the time that it takes for a person to walk through the exhibit and “quickly look side to side, you want to have given them a message,” she said. “It’s the unusual person who will actually study an exhibit.” 

This exhibit’s cases include early editions of The Anthem and other gay and lesbian newspapers, memorabilia of the feminist and lesbian movements, and numerous articles, posters, buttons, and pictures of boycotts, protests and activities of gay empowerment. Other cases take on lighter subjects, focusing on the period’s songs, hang outs and clothing. 

It’s precisely what is necessary to convey a central theme: “objects that represent basic info, that grab attention, displayed with big, bold print– something startling,” O’Leary said. “You can put anything in any size space – it’s the design that matters.” 

This is the third gay-themed exhibit Benemann has worked on at the gallery. 

And, like previous exhibits, “There are some people that are unhappy, but they’re not on the library staff,” Benemann said. He said the staff has not told him of any negative reactions. 

“I am interested in gay history as a theme,” Benemann said. “Berkeley was one of the leaders – it really was a center during the early movement.” 

The exhibit will run through the end of the year. Benemann’s team of curators include Berkeley staffers: Willyce Kim, James Eason, Steve Finacom, Mary Scott, and Kathy Dinnean. Materials came from the Library, the San Francisco-based Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Historical Society and personal collections. 


Police make arrests in recent Berkeley shootings

Daily Planet Staff Reports
Tuesday November 28, 2000

Berkeley police arrested one suspect Saturday evening in connection to last week’s shooting at Ward and Sacramento streets and arrested the suspect’s wife on unrelated charges. 

Problems in the troubled area do not appear to be under control. Police responded to reports of “shots fired” at Derby and Sacramento streets about 6 p.m. Monday. No officer was available for comment on this incident. 

Police believe the man arrested, Jarrell LaFawn Blasher, 26, of Hayward, was responsible for the shooting of a 29-year-old man Nov. 20 who was seated in his car at a red light at Ward and Sacramento streets. The suspect allegedly shot the victim as he drove by him at about 9 a.m. near Longfellow Middle School, as children were walking to school, said Lt. Russell Lopes. 

The victim was shot in the chest and left forearm, was treated at both Alta Bates and Highland hospitals and has survived his wounds, police said.  

Lopes said this shooting “may have been in retaliation” for an another shooting, which occurred about 11 p.m. on Nov. 14 at 2714 Sacramento St. 

Lopes said police believe the suspect thought the man he shot Nov. 22 was the shooter in the earlier incident, but that the victim, in fact, was not involved in the earlier incident.  

Police also suspect that Blasher may be connected to shots that were reported fired in the same area late last week. 

Blasher was arrested for attempted homicide and for being a felon in possession of a firearm. He was armed with a high caliber semi-automatic handgun when he was arrested. Blasher’s wife, Kimberly Rochelle Blasher was arrested at the same time for carrying a loaded and concealed firearm, after a loaded handgun was found in her purse. 

Both are at Santa Rita Jail pending arraignment. 

Lopes said police believe the incidents are unrelated to the homicide last summer of a man near Sacramento and Oregon streets. There is a suspect in that murder, but police need to gather more evidence before they can arrest that person, Lopes said.


Protests planned at Netanyahu speech

Daily Planet staff
Tuesday November 28, 2000

Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will speak tonight at the Berkeley Community Theater at about 7:30 p.m.  

Outside, demonstrators will gather to denounce Netanyahu’s policies, said Richard Becker of the International Action Center.  

Becker said Netanyahu advocates the annexation of the West Bank and Gaza, areas claimed by Palestinians.  

The Berkeley Daily Planet has be unable to contact a spokesperson for the event, or to ascertain who is sponsoring the event.  

Calls to the school district and the Community Theater went unanswered. 

In addition to the IAC, the Middle East Children’s Alliance and the American Arab Anti-discrimination Committee are sponsoring the demonstration at 6 p.m. at Allston Way and Milvia Street.


UC Santa Cruz considers evaluation change

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

SANTA CRUZ — Professors at the mellow and proudly unique University of California campus in Santa Cruz rejected a contentious proposal Monday that would have ended the school’s practice of requiring that students get written evaluations in every class. 

In a packed meeting of UC Santa Cruz’s Academic Senate in a science classroom, a majority of the 170 professors in attendance voted down a call to eliminate the rule. A similar plan, which said written evaluations should be optional rather than required, failed to come to a vote. 

The decision was cheered by the dozens of students at the meeting, many of whom had also protested the school’s recent decision to make letter grades mandatory rather than optional. 

“I didn’t come here specifically for the evaluations, but it was a big part of it,” said Bryan Gilstein, an 18-year-old freshman from Guilford, Conn. “They show progress better than grades and show it’s more about the learning process than the end product.” 

Ever since UC Santa Cruz opened in 1965, students have been attracted to the school’s alternative style, embodied in its status as one of the nation’s only major research universities with narrative evaluations instead90 of grades. 

“Only UCSC was gifted with the non-grading system,” a 1970 grad wrote in a recent online forum on the issue. “Otherwise, UCSC is just another cookie-cutter college that happens to be surrounded with redwoods.” 

Under the traditional system, the 11,000 students got grades only if they wanted — and some people suggested that made UC Santa Cruz a haven for slackers. Others said the system hurt Santa Cruz students competing for jobs, fellowships and graduate programs. 

That led professors at the hilly campus to vote early this year to make grades mandatory beginning in fall 2001. 

With that settled, some professors next wanted to tackle the other half of the equation – the mandatory evaluations.  

Those who wanted to eliminate the narratives said they were conceived when classes were smaller and instructors had the relationships and the time with their students to describe their work in rich detail. 

Some said the evaluations have become formulaic and follow rigid templates that are almost worthless to students applying for jobs or graduate school. 

“I think it clutters the students’ files with things that are hard to comprehend by an outside person,” said Manfred Warmuth, a computer science professor who sponsored the repeal of the narratives. 

People in favor of the narratives said the process forces students to work hard throughout the quarter rather than simply cramming for tests.  

Supporters said that has helped, rather than hindered, Santa Cruz students’ pursuit of doctorates. 

“It intones that there’s something more substantive to higher education and intellectual enterprise than simple vocational training,” said Patrick McHugh, 22, a senior majoring in politics. 

However, even the opposition conceded that the evaluations can take valuable time from professors. Consequently, the Academic Senate passed a resolution that reminds professors they have full control over the length and depth of the narratives and calls for streamlining the process. 

On the Net: 

School Web page: http://www.ucsc.edu 

Summaries of positions on the evaluation issue: http://www.senate.ucsc.edu/NESconsi.der/Contents.html


Environmentalists want to challenge farmers over water

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

FRESNO — Citing widespread contamination in state waterways, environmental groups plan to file a challenge Tuesday to a loophole they say allows farmers to discharge toxic pesticides. 

In a 33-page report titled “Water Woes,” the California Public Interest Research Group and WaterKeepers Northern California said an analysis of state surface water shows 96 percent of sites tested over 10 years had some pesticide contamination. 

“Almost every site where pesticides were sampled for, they were detected,” said Jonathan Kaplan of WaterKeepers.  

“Of half of those detected the pesticides were found to be harmful. That says to me that we have a real problem, that says to me that the problem is widespread.” 

Many of places where the pesticides were detected are listed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as impaired by pesticides. Salmon, bass and smelt have been in decline in the waters for the past decade. 

The groups plan to challenge a waiver granted 18 years ago by the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board that exempts farmers from complying with the state’s clean water act. They also plan to call for phasing out pesticides that continue to cause contamination. 

Waivers from the state, which allow pesticide runoff to flow through irrigation ditches without regulation, are currently part of a three-year public review. 

The state’s largest farm group said farmers have made great strides in controlling pesticides in recent years and said it supports the review process. 

“What they’re doing now is by far more progressive or innovative than anything done before 1982,” said Bob Krauter, a spokesman for the California Farm Bureau. 

The regional water control board granted the conditional waivers to farmers after deciding that discharges would not be toxic to fish and other wildlife, said Rudy Schnagl, chief of the board’s agricultural unit. 

But the environmental report, which analyzes data compiled by the Department of Pesticide Regulation, concludes that contamination poses health threats to aquatic life and even humans who get some of their drinking water from the sampled waters. 

In 10 years of testing creeks, rivers, drainage basins and sloughs – most in the farm-rich Central Valley – the DPR analyzed 92,000 samples from 133 locations. 

The study found pesticides: 

• in 128 sites, or 96 percent. 

• in 8,500 samples, or 9 percent. 

• exceeded aquatic or human health criteria 51 percent of the time they were detected. 

• frequently were among five pesticides considered hazardous and linked to cancer, nervous system damage, hormone disruption or groundwater contamination. 

The DPR’s database is not comprehensive, however, and although it contains useful information, it’s not conclusive, said spokeswoman Veda Federighi.  

The majority of pesticide detections were below levels of health or water quality concern. 

The agency has begun monitoring surface water and is targeting how pesticides are getting into waterways to control the problem.  

Federighi said banning practices that lead to pollution, not banning pesticides, is the more prudent approach. 

“Basically these reports call for widespread bans on pesticides,” Federighi said.  

“That’s a simple answer to a problem that’s really complex. That’s akin to saying 20 years ago that smog’s a real problem so let’s ban cars.” 

Kaplan said stronger action needs to be taken to protect fisheries and other aquatic life threatened by pesticides. 

“We’re effectively creating seasonal killing zones for aquatic life in the Central Valley,” he said.  

“Major sport fisheries have been in decline over the last decade. We don’t know how much is due to pesticides and how much is due to habitat loss. We know there are enough pesticides in high enough levels to kill off these fisheries.” 

If the petition signed by 68 environmental and public interest groups around the state succeeds, it would require permits to allow pesticide runoff. 

”“We have a water shortage problem already,” said Teresa Olle, an author of the study. “We don’t have the luxury of ruining our water sources.” 

On the Net: 

Department of Pesticide Regulation’s Surface Water Database: 

http://www.cdpr.ca.gov/docs/surfwatr/surfdata.htm


ACLU returns to court on behalf of vote Web sites

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

LOS ANGELES — A civil rights group has returned to federal court in an attempt to stop Secretary of State Bill Jones from shutting down future vote-swapping Web sites. 

The American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California failed earlier this month to gain a temporary restraining order against Jones.  

The group pledged to appeal and filed an amended complaint Monday seeking a permanent injunction. 

U.S. District Judge Robert Kelleher on Nov. 6 denied the ACLU’s request in a one-sentence ruling. 

In addition to a permanent injunction, the amended complaint seeks damages for Web site operators by claiming their Constitutional rights were violated and likely would be violated in future elections. 

The sites appeared before the Nov. 7 election as Web site operators in several states tried to create a system to allow users in one state to trade their vote for president to someone in another state.  

Many of the sites were aimed at supporters of Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader, who was seen as a threat to siphon votes from Democrat Al Gore in states where the race was expected to be close. 

Three sites voluntarily shut down before the election after Jones told one it was violating state election laws. Officials in Oregon also issued similar warnings. 

Some states, however, took no action against the sites. 

“The razor’s edge margins in this election make crystal clear that every vote counts,” said ACLU staff attorney Peter Eliasberg in a statement.  

“A few hundred votes here or a thousand there could have changed the course of this election. Voter-matching sites give individuals the tools to help ensure that their voices are truly heard and their interests are fully represented.” 

A spokesman for Jones said the federal court likely would deny the permanent injunction request. 

“The court refused the ACLU’s request to allow vote swapping prior to the election and we expect the court will reject this request,” said spokesman Alfie Charles.  

“The vote is the foundation of the democratic process. It can’t be bought sold or traded for anything of value, including someone else’s vote. I think the court will agree with our interpretation of state law and the constitutionality of that law.”


Chainsaw may have mortally wounded ‘Luna’

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

STAFFORD — Someone has taken a chainsaw to Luna, the redwood environmentalist Julia “Butterfly” Hill sat in for two years. Activists fear the thousand-year-old tree was mortally wounded. 

Hill came down from the tree last December after Luna’s owners, Pacific Lumber, agreed to spare the tree as well as a surrounding buffer zone. 

But over the Thanksgiving weekend, one of her supporters visiting the tree, in timberland about 250 miles north of San Francisco found a critical cut made by a chainsaw. Pictures posted on the Web site, http://www.earthfilms.org/luna.html, show a thin red scar running across the base of the huge redwood. 

The tree, which reaches about 15 feet across and more than 18 stories high, is still standing but it is not clear if it will survive. A statement from Hill’s organization, Circle of Life Foundation, said the cut was deep and precise and made the tree extremely vulnerable to a windstorm. 

An investigation by Humboldt County sheriff’s deputies revealed that a chainsaw was used to cut about 32 inches around the tree and about one-quarter of the way through the trunk. 

Hill was traveling Monday and could not be reached for comment by The Associated Press. But in the statement, she described the attack as a personal blow. 

“I feel this vicious attack on Luna as surely as if the chainsaw was going through me. Words cannot express the deep sorrow that I am experiencing but I am as committed as ever to do everything in my power to protect Luna and the remaining ancient forests,” she said. 

A spokeswoman for Pacific Lumber did not return a telephone call from The Associated Press. 

Hill climbed Luna on Dec. 10, 1997 for what she thought would be at most a three-week sit. Instead, she stayed up for two years, surviving howling winter storms and the fierce light of media attention as her quest drew worldwide attention. 

She descended on Dec. 18, 1999, stepping into a whirlwind of activity as she gave interviews, promoted her book, made public appearances nationwide and fended off criticism from some in the environmental movement that she was more committed to herself than to the cause. 


Volunteers take pollution pills in study on drinking water

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

SAN BERNARDINO — A hundred volunteers are participating in a drinking water study which requires them to take pills containing an industrial pollutant found in rocket fuel. 

Volunteers were recruited by Loma Linda Medical Center and are being paid $1,000 apiece to see if a pollutant called perchlorate is harmful to human health, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday. 

The experiment, funded by Lockheed Martin, has raised questions about whether scientists should allow people to ingest chemicals or pesticides to research the dangers of environmental contaminants. 

But those who perform these human experiments compare them to clinical trials for drugs. Scientists strengthen their case by saying that perchlorate is not just a pollutant but also a drug used to treat hyperthyroidism. 

However, medical ethicists say clinical trials are done to help find treatments for sick people while consuming a pollutant has no medical benefits. 

“These tests are inherently unethical,” said Richard Wiles, research director of the Environmental Working Group, a national environmental group opposed to human clinical trials for pollutants. 

The six-month perchlorate experiment, which began in August, reportedly is the first large-scale study to use human volunteers to test a water pollutant. Pollutants are usually tested on lab animals. Of the 100 volunteers involved, half of them ingest the pollutant and the others get a placebo. 

Those taking the perchlorate are swallowing up to three milligrams daily – 83 times more than a person would get from drinking water containing the amount allowed by California’s Department of Health Services. 

At high doses, perchlorate can inhibit production of thyroid hormones. Normal thyroid function is critical for regulating the growth of fetuses and young children and the metabolism of adults. 

Experts are trying to determine whether small doses of perchlorate – like those found in water supplies in San Bernardino, Azusa, Santa Clarita, Riverside and other areas – interfere with thyroid glands. 

A study published this year shows that infants in the Lake Mead area of Arizona – where water contains perchlorate – are born with altered thyroid function.  

But other studies, in perchlorate-contaminated areas of Las Vegas and Chile, have shown no such effects. The volunteers in the Loma Linda experiment are undergoing extensive medical testing to ensure that they face no threats while participating in the study. The examinations include monthly tests to measure their thyroid, liver and kidney function. 

There is currently no government agency that regulates human experiments. However every institution has a review board that must approve every study. 

The boards of three medical institutions approved Loma Linda’s perchlorate tests, said Anthony Firek, who is directing the study. 

In addition to Loma Linda, the study was approved by Boston University – which employs one of the researchers – and the Jerry L. Pettis Memorial VA Medical Center, where some of the tests are being done. 


San Diego faces fine for dumping dirt

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

SAN DIEGO — The city could be fined up to $25,000 a day unless officials devise a plan to keep runoff from a heap of polluted dirt from getting into a creek and Mission Bay. 

The city has violated California’s water code by dumping 63,000 cubic feet of dirt without notifying the state of plans to accept the dirt near Kearney Mesa Community Park and for not developing a plan to prevent rain runoff from carrying some of the soil down a creek and into the bay, the Regional Water Quality Control Board said. 

City officials were given until Monday to submit a report to the water board. 

“We became concerned because dumping that dirt on about 10 acres is tantamount to a construction site, and there was no evidence of statewide or city of San Diego permits, both of which require measures to prevent storm-water runoff from carrying silt and pollutants off the site,” said Art Coe, assistant executive officer of the water board. 

City officials contend that materials in the dirt won’t harm humans. 

“The soil was found to be nonhazardous, but there are some heavy hydrocarbons, such as old diesel fuel, and they would limit the areas where we could relocate and/or dispose of the soils,” said Ted Medina, deputy director of the city’s coastal parks division. 

The dumping has upset environmentalists. 

“This is typical of the city’s disregard for the Clean Water Act grading and commencing a project without public input, leaving the public out of the equation and just sort of doing what they want to do,” said Donna Frye, founder of the group STOP, or Surfers Tired Of Pollution.


Supreme court accepts medical marijuana case

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court entered the debate over medical marijuana Monday, agreeing to decide whether the drug can be provided to patients out of “medical necessity” even though federal law makes its distribution a crime. 

The justices said they will hear the Clinton administration’s effort to bar a California group from providing the drug to seriously ill patients for pain and nausea relief. 

A lower court decision allowing the Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative to distribute the drug “threatens the government’s ability to enforce the federal drug laws,” government lawyers said. 

But the California group says that for some patients, marijuana is “the only medicine that has proven effective in relieving their conditions or symptoms.” 

The group’s lawyer, Annette P. Carnegie, said Monday the federal Controlled Substances Act does not prohibit the distribution of marijuana for medical reasons. 

“Those choices, we believe, are best made by physicians and not by the government,” she said. Marijuana has been effective in relieving nausea in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, weight loss in HIV-positive patients and in reducing pain, she said. 

Eight states in addition to California have medical-marijuana laws in place or approved by voters: Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Maine, Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Colorado. Residents of Washington, D.C., voted in 1998 to allow the medical use of marijuana, but Congress blocked the measure from becoming law. 

Justice Department lawyers said Congress has decided that marijuana has “no currently accepted medical use.” 

In August, the Supreme Court barred the California organization from distributing marijuana while the government pursued its appeal. 

Justice Stephen G. Breyer did not participate in the case.  

His brother, Charles, a federal trial judge in San Francisco, previously barred distribution of marijuana only to have his decision reversed by a federal appeals court. 

California’s law, passed by the voters in 1996, authorizes the possession and use of marijuana for medical purposes upon a doctor’s recommendation. 

The Oakland group said its goal is “to provide seriously ill patients with safe access to necessary medicine so that these individuals do not have to resort to the streets.” 

But the federal Controlled Substances Act includes marijuana among the drugs whose manufacture and distribution are illegal. 

In January 1998, the federal government filed a lawsuit against the Oakland club, asking a judge to ban it from providing marijuana. 

Judge Charles Breyer issued a preliminary order imposing such a ban.  

But the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed, saying the government did not disprove the club’s evidence that the drug was “the only effective treatment for a large group of seriously ill individuals.” 

Last May, Breyer issued a new order allowing the Oakland group to provide marijuana to patients who needed it. 

In the appeal granted Supreme Court review, Justice Department lawyers said the appeals court “seriously erred” in deciding the federal law allowed a medical-necessity defense. 

The Oakland club’s lawyers said “the voters of California have spoken” in approving the medical-marijuana measure. Congress has not explicitly barred a medical necessity defense against the federal anti-drug law, the lawyers added. 

The Supreme Court also agreed Monday to hear an appeal by a condemned killer from Texas whose lawyers say he is mentally retarded.  

The court said it will use the case of Johnny Paul Penry to clarify how much opportunity jurors in death-penalty cases must have to consider the defendant’s mental capacity. 

On the Net: 

For the appeals court ruling in U.S. v. Oakland Cannabis Buyers’ Cooperative: http://www.uscourts.gov/links.html and click on 9th Circuit.


Researchers find mUtated gEne underlying autism

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

WASHINGTON — Scientists have long theorized that about 15 different genes play a role in who is born with the severe brain disorder autism – and now they’ve finally found one of those genes. 

A study of 57 autism patients found that 40 percent carry a mutated version of the HOXA1 gene, which plays a crucial role in early brain development, University of Rochester scientists reported Monday. 

Children need to inherit just one copy of the mutated gene from one parent to have autism. In fact, scientists found only one patient, a very severe case, who inherited a copy of the bad gene from both parents, suggesting that when that happens the fetus usually dies, said lead researcher Patricia Rodier, who heads the university’s National Institutes of Health-funded autism research center. 

The NIH called the finding a significant step in understanding what predisposes people to developing autism. More than 400,000 Americans have the brain disorder, characterized by profound social withdrawal, repetitive behavior and inability to communicate. 

Research suggests it’s caused when something goes wrong during critical fetal brain development – a theory the gene discovery, in the December issue of the journal Teratology, supports. 

Why don’t parents who harbor the defective gene have autism themselves? Some do have very subtle symptoms, suggesting that something else, perhaps some other gene, keeps the autism-related gene in check, Rodier said. 

HOXA1 is one of a family of genes vital to early embryo development because genes in the group turn on or off other genes. HOXA1’s specific role is in brain development.  

Mice who lack this gene have brainstem damage, malformed ears and other classic signs of autism – one reason Rodier’s research team decided to check the gene’s role in people. 

It’s not the kind of gene that could ever be fixed with gene therapy.  

But the discovery may help doctors unravel just how the brain changes when HOXA1 is abnormal, Rodier said. 

“If you figure out the brain changes, you’re on your way, we hope, to finding better treatments,” she said. 

On the Net: 

NIH autism site: http://www.nichd.nih.gov/autism 

Teratology Society site with link to study abstract: http://www.teratology.org


Al Gore not about to bow out just yet

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

George W. Bush begins planning; says ‘give it up’ 

 

Al Gore insisted “there are more than enough votes” to reverse Florida’s make-or-break election results, ignoring GOP demands that he bow out even as George W. Bush plunged into the work Monday of building a new government. Democratic leaders rallied behind their vice president, though the party’s rank-and-file raised scattered voices of dissent. 

A day after Bush summoned TV cameras to press for Gore’s concession, the vice president prepared a prime-time address to the nation — perhaps his last, best chance to explain why the closest presidential election in 124 years didn’t end Sunday night when Florida’s top elections officer, a GOP partisan, certified Bush the winner by 537 votes out of 6 million cast. 

Gore contested the case in a Florida state court Monday, where attorneys for both sides wrestled over schedules and got little accomplished in their first session. The state case was assigned to Judge N. Sanders Sauls, a folksy jurist with broad authority under Florida law to “correct any alleged wrong and to provide any relief appropriate.” 

The U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear GOP argument against recounts Friday. The stakes could hardly be higher. 

“The integrity of our democracy depends upon the consent of the governed, freely expressed in an election where every vote counts,” Gore told Democratic leaders before his brief TV address. 

With the agonizingly close election stretching into its fourth week, neither side appeared ready to give way in a fierce struggle that has entangled the judiciary in the business of presidential politics, threatening to spill past the Dec. 12 deadline for selecting state electors. 

Bush moved quickly to take on the work, if not the title, of president-elect. Running mate Dick Cheney criticized the Clinton-Gore administration for refusing Bush access to $5.3 million in government transition funds and a federal office building set aside for the presidential changeover. He announced the Bush team would raise money to finance its own operation. 

“This is regrettable because we believe the government has an obligation to honor the certifiable results of an election,” Cheney said at a Washington news conference, naming an executive director and press secretary for the transition team. 

He took a swipe at Gore for not dropping out, as the Bush team sought to rush the vice president from the race before the courts have an opportunity to renew recounts. 

Gore is “still unwilling to accept the outcome. That is unfortunate in light of the penalty that may have to be paid at some future date if the next administration is not allowed to prepare to take the reins of government,” Cheney said. 

Cheney’s appearance was part of a fierce public relations fight as the Gore camp tried to show Democratic solidarity and the Bush team attempted to discredit the vice president’s challenge of the Florida certification. 

Bush’s brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, quietly signed the paperwork required by federal law to certify Bush the winner of Florida’s 25 electoral votes.  

That would put him one vote over the 270 required to become the nation’s 43rd president — if courts uphold brother Jeb’s verdict. 

High-minded principles aside, Gore said the issue was also personal: If state or federal courts re-open handcounts that concluded Sunday, Bush’s 537-vote edge would be at risk. “There are more than enough votes to change the outcome,” Gore said, “and that’s an important factor as well.” 

But the vice president was handed a heavy burden when a Florida Supreme Court deadline expired Sunday night, freeing Secretary of State Katherine Harris to declare her political ally the winner of Florida’s election and America’s White House. 

Gore’s lawyers protested results from Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Nassau counties and asked the judge to “certify that the true and accurate results of the 2000 presidential election in Florida is that the electors of Al Gore and Joe Lieberman received the majority of the votes cast in the election.” 

Gore believes he would overtake Bush if the final tally would include recounted ballots that were rejected by Harris — minus the 174 votes added to Bush’s lead during what Democrats claim was an illegal, eleventh-hour scramble for GOP ballots, including military votes from overseas. 

Gore now faces a tough legal fight — persuading a court to overturn a certified election — and an electorate with limited patience. 

An overnight poll by ABC and the Washington Post found that 60 percent of those surveyed thought the vice president should concede. Thirty-five percent said he should not. 

Urging Americans not to rush to judgment, House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt and Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle conducted a conference call with Gore from Florida. Gephardt said the certified totals were “incomplete and inaccurate and it’s premature for either side to declare victory or concede.” 

At the White House, President Clinton called for calm and, echoing Gore, said the “the integrity of the voter, every single vote,” is at stake. 

Yet rumblings were heard from the party’s grassroots. 

“I think the vice president should take the high ground and hand it over,” Rep. Julia Carson, D-Ind., said in a phone interview. “I don’t think he lost the election, but I think the illegal activity that has taken place since the election has left the country battle scarred. In order for the country to get on with its business, we have to put this behind us.” 

Robert Reich, former labor secretary for Clinton, said he had “great doubts about whether it is wise ... for the vice president to continue to pursue and to contest the results in Florida.” Reich, interviewed by ABC, had endorsed Gore’s rival in the primaries, Bill Bradley. 

“Gore might want to take it to court, but I just don’t know,” Joe Sulzer, a Democratic state lawmaker from Chillicothe, Ohio, said in a telephone interview. “Without help quick, George Bush will be our next president.” 

“Since (Bush) got certified, we’re moving closer and closer to finishing this thing off,” said Democratic strategist Jim Duffy of Washington. “I just don’t understand how they’re going to convince the courts that they should count those ballots.” 

Anita Freedman, a Democratic National Committee member from New Hampshire, said she was angry over Harris’ decision but inclined to believe that Bush has won. “I’ll keep praying, I guess,” she said. “I’m praying for a miracle.” 

Other Democratic activists like John Pound in Santa Fe, N.M., and Mary Gail Gwaltney of Las Cruces, N.M., said Gore has a duty to keep fighting after winning the national popular vote and coming so close in Florida. 

“What’s the rush to get it wrong?” said Gwaltney, a DNC member. 

Bush, for one, is in a hurry to take over. He met with aides in Austin, Texas, to discuss his plans for the Cabinet and White House staff, and speculation mounted in GOP circles about his new team. 

Retired Gen. Colin Powell is still Bush’s choice to be secretary of state, but senior advisers to the governor said the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff didn’t want his selection to be injected into Sunday’s political tumult. Bush decided before the election to name Condoleezza Rice as his national security adviser and has not changed his mind, senior advisers said. 

Powell and Rice will likely be the first Cabinet choices formally announced, but probably not this week, aides said. 

Advisers said Bush plans to have a diverse Cabinet, in terms of race and gender. He hopes to appoint at least one Democrat to a high-profile job, they said. 

Gore has said he knows who will be in his Cabinet, though seniors advisers insist little or no time has been devoted to the topic. 

In other legal wrangling: 

—A lawsuit over Palm Beach County’s “butterfly ballot” was sent to the state Supreme Court on Monday, though the justices had not yet decided whether to hear the case. Some Democrats complained the ballot was so confusing that they mistakenly cast votes for Pat Buchanan instead of Gore. They are seeking a new election in the county. 

— A case scheduled for a court in Seminole County northeast of Orlando, on allegations by a Democratic attorney that Republicans tampered with absentee ballot applications, was being moved Monday to Tallahassee. 

—Bush lawyers sought to put oral arguments on hold in a case they brought before a federal court in Atlanta against Florida’s manual recounts. 

—The Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network filed a federal lawsuit in Miami, claiming Harris’ certification disenfranchised minority voters. 


Six in 10 say vice president should concede race now

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

WASHINGTON — Six in 10 Americans, including a fourth of Al Gore supporters in a new poll, say it is time for the vice president to concede now that George W. Bush has been certified as the winner of Florida’s 25 electoral votes. 

About six in 10 in the ABC News-Washington Post poll also said they would accept Gore as legitimately elected if he were to emerge as the president.  

Almost eight in 10, say they would accept Bush as legitimately elected. 

About 40 percent in the poll taken Sunday night said Gore should concede because the vote was fair, while almost 20 percent want him to quit because they “want to get this over with.” 

Gore’s lawyers were going to court Monday in Tallahassee, the Florida capital, to object formally to the certification, a step known as a “contest” under state law.  

The vice president has been working to keep Democrats behind his appeal. 

Almost six in 10 people say it’s more important “for this to end quickly” than for each side to make its full arguments in court.  

That reflects partisan differences as much as impatience with the long fight: just over eight in 10 Bush supporters say it’s more important for the race to end quickly and three in 10 Gore supporters. 

Almost six in 10 overall say they would oppose the Florida legislature getting involved in the presidential race. 

Those polled ®were about evenly divided on whether “dimpled chad,” ballots that were indented but not perforated, should be counted – a question at the heart of manual recounts in southeast Florida. 

The national poll of 607 adults has an error margin of 4 percentage points.  

Such overnight polls provide a snapshot of the emotional reaction to an event like Sunday night’s news that the Florida vote was certified.  

Such findings often hold up in polls taken over a longer time span, as well. 

The increased sentiment that it is time for the presidential election to wrap up does not reflect a shift in feeling about who should be president.  

That was still split in this poll as it was on Election Day, with 43 percent saying they favor Bush and 42 percent favoring Gore.


City attorney/commission dispute heats up

By John Geluardi Daily Planet Staff
Monday November 27, 2000

The City Council voted Tuesday to seek outside legal council before deciding whether to support a city attorney’s opinion that has caused a legal revolt by four members of the Landmark Preservation Commission. 

After hearing comments in both public and closed sessions, the City Council voted 5-2 to consult with outside counsel regarding City Attorney Manuela Albuquerque's Oct. 30 opinion that four LPC commissioners, who are also board members or staff of the Berkeley Architectural Historical Association, are creating a conflict of interest if they participate in any LPC decisions regarding the controversial Congregation of Beth El proposal to build a synagogue and school at 1301 Oxford St.  

Mayor Shirley Dean and Councilmember Linda Maio abstained from the vote. Councilmembers Betty Olds and Polly Armstrong were not present. 

Albuquerque said Berkeley will open itself up to potential lawsuits under the 14th Amendment if the four continue to serve on the commission because of a letter written by BAHA president, Sarah Wikander, that was critical of the Environmental Impact Report for the proposed Beth El project.  

The commissioners argue that the city attorney is exaggerating any conflict the letter might pose in order to “de-fang” the commission by disqualifying four of its members. 

The commissioners, Becky O'Malley, Carrie Olson, Doug Morse and Lesley Emmington-Jones, have thus far refused to recuse themselves and an attorney representing them has said he will take the city to court if the council decides to support Albuquerque.  

It is still uncertain if the City Council can effectively resolve the situation without some kind of legal action. The commissioners have threatened to sue if they are taken off the commission. 

In her written opinion, Albuquerque said BAHA’s position on the EIR taints the commissioner’s opinion on the Temple Beth El project. She maintains that the commissioner’s would not be able to provide Beth El with a fair hearing on matters related to the development such has permit hearings to alter the property which is an official city historical landmark.  

“It doesn't have to do with personal philosophy, religion or ethnic background, it's simply that when you are wearing two hats it is very difficult to be fair and impartial,” Albuquerque said. 

O'Malley said Albuquerque's assertion of the appearance of bias is exaggerated and that BAHA only criticized the privately contracted EIR and not the project itself.  

In a letter to the LPC, Antonio Rossman, a land-use attorney representing the commissioners, said that the city attorney’s opinion would have far reaching effects on all of Berkeley's commissions, boards and city officials because many people active in the city's politics are also members of politically active organizations. 

The next LPC meeting is scheduled for Dec. 4 and at least one of the commissioners said she intends to take her place on the commission and perform all of her required duties — including voting on issues related to the proposed Beth El project regardless of the city attorney's opinion. 

“The city attorney serves the city in an advisory capacity, she doesn't have the power to dictate her will onto the commission," O'Malley said. 

The last LPC meeting on Nov. 6 ended abruptly when the four commissioners refused to disqualify themselves and Albuquerque, who was present at the meeting, directed Chairman Burton Edwards to not count the four commissioners votes at which point Olson moved to adjourn the meeting and the motion carried by a 5-2 vote. Two LPC commissioners were not present.  

The 150 people attending the meeting — the largest crowd in the commission's history — were shocked when the meeting suddenly ended before any agenda items were heard. 

 


Manipulation of commission is a disgrace for city

Monday November 27, 2000

 

 

Editor: 

Kudos to City Attorney Manuela Albuquerque for her action disqualifying four members of the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) in the matter of Congregation Beth El.  

The manipulation of this particular city commission by key members of the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association (BAHA) has been a disgrace for years. Ms. Albuquerque’s recent action begins to address the outrageous problems that a BAHA-dominated LPC has inflicted on Berkeley and many of its citizens. 

By virtue of several of the current appointments by the City Council to LPC, BAHA board members have come to dominate LPC and have turned a city commission into the enforcement arm of a private organization whose agenda is much broader than LPC’s legal mandate. 

This obvious conflict of interest is unfair to project applicants, and economically costly in terms of lawsuits against the city which result from this conflict.  

The Council should applaud Ms. Albuquerque’s correct and welcome action. In addition, the council should further support this effort by appointing to the LPC persons who do not carry the potential to create politicized commission actions on behalf of a private group.  

 

Donn Logan 

Berkeley 


Bears get first win over South Alabama

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday November 27, 2000

CHICAGO – California defeated South Alabama, 70-59, for the first victory of the Caren Horstmeyer era Saturday at UIC Pavilion. The Bears are 1-3 on the year, while the Jaguars fall to 2-2 with the loss to the Bears in the consolation game of the UIC Thanksgiving Tournament.  

Senior guard Kenya Corley rebounded from a scoreless game against Alabama Friday to lead the Golden Bears with a career-high of 22 points. Corley ignited Cal’s transition game, which accounted for 10 points. Senior forward Lauren Ashbaugh added 15 points and eight rebounds for Cal, which held a 42-34 edge on the glass. Jessica Webb led South Alabama with 22 points, and Taneshia Russell added 13.  

“I love to see different players step up,” said Horstmeyer. “This afternoon Kenya Corley stepped up and made a huge difference for our team. She played with confidence. She played the way I know she’s capable of every game.  

“I think Lauren Ashbaugh was also a key. I say that because whenever she went in, we went on a run. She was tough. She wanted to win the game. I really feel as a team it was important that we got a win under our belts.”  

The Bears jumped out to a 12-5 lead behind six points from Corley with 11:46 until halftime. The Bears offense then briefly slowed as the Jaguars closed to within 13-12 and 15-14 with seven minutes on the clock behind seven points from Webb. Cal countered with an 8-0 run to mount its biggest lead of the game to that point at 23-14 with 3:01 to go. Corley nailed a three-pointer as time expired to give Cal a 27-21 halftime advantage.  

Cal utilized a 51.7 percent shooting effort in the second half to pull away from South Alabama. Ashbaugh scored 11 of her points after the break. The Bears extended its lead to double figures for the first time in the game at 46-36 following two free throws from Corley with 10:02 to play.  

Cal built a 15-point margin at 62-47 with 5:02 left when South Alabama mounted a final charge, cutting the Bears lead to seven with only 35 ticks on the clock following a three-pointer from Russell. Courtney Johnson helped the Bears seal the game with two free throws, and Corley put an exclamation point on her team’s first victory of the 2000-01 season with a layup with one second left.  

Behind eight-of-15 shooting from Corley, Cal shot a season-best 46.4 percent overall from the field, and had its best defensive shooting percentage of the year at 33.9.  

Cal’s Courtney Johnson was named to the six-person all-tournament team.  

After four road games to open the season, Cal has its season opener Saturday, Dec. 2 against Cal State Northridge at 3 p.m., as host of the 23rd-annual Oakland Tribune Classic. The tournament, which also features Loyola Marymount and Florida International, wraps up, Dec. 3.


Study: Race plays a factor in baby care

Daily Planet Staff Report
Monday November 27, 2000

A study conducted last year by the city’s Heath and Human Services Department, Public Health Division has identified a a significant difference in health between newborn African-American and Caucasian babies born in Berkeley during the last three years.  

The study shows that African-American babies have lower birth weights, receive late prenatal care and that their babies suffer more developmental difficulties than their white counterparts.  

According to the study African-American children in Berkeley, are nearly four times as likely to be of low birth weight (less than 5.5 pounds) as their white counterparts. They’re also 40 times more likely to die within the first four weeks of life. 

The study also showed that African-American mothers have more predisposing factors such as inadequate social support and late prenatal care. 

In recognition of the study the City Council unanimously adopted a resolution to accept two grants to help educate pregnant African-American women in the hopes of decreasing a host of prenatal and afterbirth complications. 

The city will receive $100,000 to hire two Health Service Coordinator for four months, a health worker specialist for six months and an hourly office assistant for four months. The second grant for $10,000 will be used to address low birth weighs disparity through interviewing Berkeley mothers to determine social and interactive factors to better plan prevention programs. In addition, officials hope to create a “SisterLove” program modeled after the nationally recognized Birthing Right Project, to create a sister/buddy/mentoring system to shepherd mothers through pregnancy, delivery and the first year of life. 

The grants were made possible with the help of the Black Infant Health program, Maternal Child Health Branch, and the Alta Bates Medical Center.


Volleyball ends season with tourney championship

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday November 27, 2000

ALBUQUERQUE, NM – The University of California women’s volleyball team (13-15) defeated host New Mexico (10-17), 3-0 (15-9, 15-8, 16-14) Saturday night in the championship match of the Albuturkey Classic held at the Johnson Center in Albuquerque, NM.  

It was a positive end to the 2000 season for the Golden Bears as they finished the year with three straight victories and a 13-15 overall record in coach Rich Feller’s second season.  

Senior outside hitter Alicia Perry was named the Albuturkey Classic MVP after leading Cal with a team-high 16 kills and 14 digs. Perry had also led the Bears with 12 kills and 14 digs the night before against Northern Arizona. She finished her collegiate career as only the fourth player in Cal history to record over 1000 kills and 1000 digs. Perry finished with 1348 career kills, 3729 kill attempts and 1131 digs. Her kill and kill attempts are the third most in school history and her digs are the sixth most in school history.  

Sophomore Reena Pardiwala was also an all-tournament selection as she recorded 11 kills, a .667 hitting percentage (11 kills, one error, 15 attempts), 13 digs and five block assists. Sophomore Leah Young added 10 kills and four block assists.  

In game one, the Bears jumped out to a 7-2 lead but let New Mexico tie the contest, 8-8. After a timeout, Cal went on an impressive run to win, 15-9. A tip and a kill by Pardiwala broke the 8-8 tie, and following a Lobo point, the Bears put the game away on three kills by Young, block assists by Young and Heather Diers and an ace by Caity Noonan.  

Cal took control of game two when it jumped out to a 12-1 lead on a kill by Perry. However, New Mexico made a strong comeback, outscoring the Bears, 7-1, to get within 13-8. After a timeout, Cal was finally able to win game two, 15-8, on a tip by Perry and a Lobos errant kill attempt.  

The Bears had to come-from-behind to win game three. New Mexico had a 14-10 lead and had five different chances at game point, but Cal was able to hold off the Lobos. Block assists by Gabrielle Abernathy and Diers got the Bears within 14-11. A tip by Candace McNamee made the score 14-12. After a kill attempt went wide for New Mexico, Perry had two straight blocks to give Cal a 15-14 lead. Finally, Pardiwala was able to give the Bears the game and the match with a kill.


Local Peruvians react to Fujimori’s resignation

By Olga R. Rodríguez Special to the Daily Planet
Monday November 27, 2000

Peruvian immigrants in the Bay Area have mixed reactions to President’s Alberto Fujimori’s recent surprise announcement that he is resigning. 

Just like the people in Peru, they were left confused and divided by the political soap opera in which Fujimori plays the lead role. 

Fujimori sent a letter to the Peruvian congress from Tokyo, where he had arrived unexpectedly on November 16, saying he would step down after a decade as president. In September, he said he would leave the presidency by July of next year and called for new elections to take place April 8, 2001. 

For Maria, a waitress at Mi Lindo Peru who declined to give her full name, Fujimori is resigning because the opposition is pressuring him to do so and not because people are unhappy with him. 

“Fujimori got rid of terrorism,” said Maria, who left Peru three years ago. 

“Before Fujimori, there were times when there was no electrical power on Christmas Eve. His government brought food and services to the people.” 

Fujimori's involvement in politics has been dramatic from the start. A little-known lecturer in agricultural economics, he became a major player in Peru’s politics after a surprise victory in the 1990 presidential elections. He gained support after his government virtually wiped out the Maoist Sendero Luminoso terrorist group and the Marxist Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement before the end of his first term. 

“Fujimori's government stabilized the economy and, relatively speaking, brought peace to the country,” said Fernando Calderón, an adviser to the United Nations and a visiting professor at UC Berkeley.  

“But his government also functioned in a less legitimate and legal way. His government did not abide to human rights norms and the number of political prisoners noticeably increased under Fujimori.” 

A Human Rights Watch report released Sunday alleged that Fujimori's security and intelligence apparatus continued to torture and abuse prisoners even after the terrorist threat had been effectively eliminated. 

But for some outside observers, the human rights violations come as a result of Fujimori’s determination to put an end to the leftist terrorism that plagued the country before he came to power. 

“Before his presidency, I never visited Peru because of fear of terrorist attacks,” said Peter Gomez, a Nicaraguan who visited Peru more than once during Fujimori's government. “But after I saw the way he handled the hostage situation at the Japanese Embassy, I knew he was a man with courage.” 

In 1992, Fujimori dissolved Congress and then packed it with his supporters, who passed a new constitution allowing him to run for a third term. But after a corruption scandal involving Vladimiro Montecinos, head of the secret intelligent service and the president's right arm, Fujimori's popularity diminished. 

Fujimori's departure leaves a gaping hole in a country where democratic institutions have been crippled by an oppressive government, Calderón said. 

“Unfortunately, when there is a weak political system people fall for charismatic leaders like Fujimori,” Calderón added. “But in the long run these leaders don’t fulfill their promises.  

Now, Peruvians have to achieve a consensus among the different political players. Otherwise, the climate of uncertainty could dampen economic prospects and slow Peru's recovery.” 

But for some immigrants the distance between Peru and their new home is far. 

“I don't follow Peruvian politics,” said Julio Shinzato, a Peruvian of Japanese descent who has lived in San Francisco for more than 20 years. “What happens in Peru does not affect me. I am from here now.”


Water polo downed by Bruins

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday November 27, 2000

LOS ALAMITOS – The No. 4 ranked California men’s water polo team (16-9) fell in a 6-5 squeaker to No. 2 ranked UCLA (21-3) in the title match of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Tournament, Sunday in Los Alamitos.  

A victory over the Bruins would have given Cal an automatic berth into the NCAA Championship, Dec. 2-3 in Malibu. The Bears could still receive an at-large berth to the NCAAs after topping Long Beach State, 10-6, and upsetting No. 1 ranked UC Irvine, 9-7 in overtime, during the tournament.  

“I think any number of teams deserve a berth,” said Cal coach Peter Asch. “Any one of the teams from our conference would be a good representative”  

UCLA won its second consecutive MPSF Championship with the victory. The Bruins trailed at the half, 3-2, but scored three unanswered goals, two from Brian Brown, to take a 5-3 lead early in the fourth quarter. Bear senior Eldad Hazor brought Cal to within one with a goal with 39 seconds left in the match, but the Bruins controlled the next possession and prevented Cal from taking more than a desperation shot at the buzzer.  

Hazor led the Bears with two goals.Sophomore goalie Russell Bernstein had an impressive match with 11 saves.  

“I just thought the tournament was a reflection of the whole season,” said Asch. “Every game is so tough. I thought both teams played very well, and it’s a shame that one of them had to lose. It was a high-end, toe-to-toe affair.”


UC Davis researchers find that painful food tastes good

Daily Planet wire report
Monday November 27, 2000

University of California at Davis researchers say many of the substances we enjoy consuming actually trigger pain, and argue that pain makes up an important component of some flavors. 

In a study published last month in the Journal of Neurophysiology, neurophysiologist Earl Carstens and food scientist Michael O'Mahony compared the effects on nerve activity of capsaicin, the substance that makes chilis hot, and nicotine. They found that when dropped on the tongue of rats, both trigger the firing of trigeminal nerves, which transmit pain to the brain. 

Carbonated drinks also cause painful sensations on the tongue, according to neurophysiologist Earl Carstens, because the carbon dioxide in the bubbles forms carbonic acid. 

“If you stick your tongue in carbonated water for a few seconds, that gets painful,” Carstens said. 

Other flavors with painful effects include vinegar, salt, black pepper, mustard and horseradish. 

“Humans have to learn to like these irritants, because they are all activating pain pathways,” Carstens noted. 

Not all of these irritating flavors and substances act in the same way, however.  

The burn of a spicy meal will actually continue to increase as long as you keep eating it continuously, but will be reduced if you pause between bites. Nicotine, on the other hand, desensitizes nerves almost immediately. 

The research is part of a body of work which aims to understand how the brain interprets flavors, and what factors affect taste.  


Homeless animals sold at upscale store

Staff
Monday November 27, 2000

Daily Planet wire report 

 

Those looking for a special gift should go to the windows of Neiman Marcus at Union Square, where animals from the San Francisco SPCA are on display and available for adoption. 

More pets will be available across the street at the SF/SPCA pavilion, where SPCA personnel can provide information on individual animals and guide you through the adoption process. Every adopted pet will be vaccinated, spayed or neutered and screened for medical or behavioral problems, and come with a 30-day medical assistance plan, a booklet of helpful hints and a new leash or carrier. 

Adoption costs only $35 per pet. 

This is the third year in a row animals have been displayed at one of the city's stores during the holiday season, according to an SPCA spokeswoman. The display and pavilion will remain at Union Square until Dec. 23.


Lawn fumes sicken area

The Associated Press
Monday November 27, 2000

COVINA – Authorities evacuated 30 homes Saturday when a homeowner mixed pepper spray with water and spilled it onto his lawn, causing a police officer and several other residents to fall ill, firefighters said. 

The officer and another person were taken to an area hospital, according to paramedics. Two other people were treated at the scene and released. 

“My throat started burning but the first person who felt it was my mom,” resident Amy Honeywell told KCAL-TV in Los Angeles. “She started throwing up. At first we thought she just got ill from something, but then my throat burned and that was enough for us to call the police and have them check it out.” 

The fumes were reported shortly after 5 p.m., said Los Angeles County fire dispatcher Ed Pickett. The fumes naturally dissipated and residents were allowed back to their homes several hours later, Pickett said. 

Resident Ed Honeywell told KCAL he began to cough, sneeze and vomit and his eyes began to water severely. “Couldn’t see, couldn’t talk, couldn’t breathe.”


Florida Secretary of State denies extension

By Walter R. Mears AP Special Correspondent
Monday November 27, 2000

Florida’s secretary of state prepared to certify the votes cast for George W. Bush and Al Gore in the near-deadlocked election that would determine which of them becomes 43rd president of the United States. But the struggle went on, the vote numbers under challenge even before they were declared. 

The votes were due in the office of Secretary of State Katherine Harris by 5 p.m. EST, a deadline set by the state supreme court. Sixty-six counties had them ready before that hour; in the 67th, Palm Beach County, canvassers kept recounting against the clock. Harris denied Palm Beach County an extension until Monday to judge questionable ballots. 

At stake are 25 electoral votes that would finally settle, for Bush or for Gore, the Nov. 7 presidential election. 

At midafternoon Sunday, an unofficial count by The Associated Press showed Bush with an edge of 454 votes. Hand recounting of machine-cast ballots in heavily Democratic Broward County, the Fort Lauderdale area, and Palm Beach County, had narrowed the Bush edge. 

Bush led by 930 votes before the recounts there. Absentee ballots from servicemen abroad added votes to his column. 

Either way, it was an all but invisible margin out of 6 million votes cast in Florida on Nov. 7. 

Anticipating a certification in which Harris, a Republican, would report Bush the leader, Gore was said to be preparing a speech to be delivered on Monday, explaining his case for the continuing challenge. 

Florida’s Democratic senators, one just elected, previewed it at a news conference in Tallahassee. 

“If either candidate were to be declared the victor and electoral votes awarded based on the status today, neither candidate would be legitimate,” Sen. Bob Graham said. “What is putting the presidency in jeopardy is the prospect of illegitimacy.” 

Sen.-elect Bill Nelson said American’s don’t want “an election that they feel like has been rigged or has not fully been counted. 

“We shouldn’t have a rush to judgment,” he said. “Rather, we should be on a path toward justice.” 

Democratic congressional leaders said nothing would be settled Sunday or soon. “We’re now in a two-week-or-so period in which you have a contest on both sides of this election,” said Rep. Richard A. Gephardt, the House minority leader. 

“What they’re trying to do is overturn every rock, looking for more Gore votes, extend this as long as possible,” said Gov. George Pataki of New York, one of the politicians both sides have summoned to Florida to watch the recounting and talk about it. 

Pataki said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that he believes Bush won and that the Democrats are trying to recount him out of victory. 

Sen. Tom Daschle of South Dakota, the Senate’s Democratic leader, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he “truly” believes Gore won Florida, and that a full, fair recount would show it. 

“I’ve talked with most of my colleagues over the last several days and there isn’t any interest in conceding anything at this point,” Daschle said. 

There are court challenges in Florida on both sides, with more to come when courthouses open Monday. The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday will hear Bush’s case against a state Supreme Court recount decision. Gore lawyers said they will challenge certification of a Bush lead by Harris, a Republican who campaigned for the Texas governor. 

Bush has the option of dropping his appeal to the Supreme Court should he be certified the winner. That seemed unlikely because it would concede to Gore the recounted votes that put the vice president closer to winning a post-certification challenge to the count. 

“I think both sides have decided to take this election beyond the certification,” Daschle said. “Whether or not she makes any pronouncement tonight is not really relevant.” 

The Sunday deadline was set by the Florida Supreme Court in the unanimous decision Bush appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Florida justices ruled that ballots cast by machine and ordered recounted by hand should be included in the Bush and Gore totals, and that the numbers should be reported to the secretary of state by 5 p.m. EST Sunday. 

Harris had planned to certify the outcome as of Nov. 17, the deadline under state law. Bush’s attorneys said the state Supreme Court improperly overrode that law when it set a later deadline. 

The three Palm Beach canvassing board members who unsuccessfully sought more time all are Democrats — and the Gore campaign is going to court against them on Monday to challenge their recounting method, complaining they used too stringent a standard in determining what was a valid vote. 

That was one of the issues on which Gore was basing his challenge to certification. 

In Broward County, where Gore made more substantial recount gains, the canvassers were less restrictive in judging a voter’s intent on punchcard ballots that did not register in voting machines because they were not properly punched, only dented.


Lawyers looking for ways to influence vote count

By Linda Deutsch AP Special Correspondent
Monday November 27, 2000

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – While recounted Florida votes edged toward certification Sunday, lawyers for Al Gore and George W. Bush doggedly pursued more legal avenues for changing the totals yet again. 

“This is one of the most amazing legal chess games we’ve ever seen played,” said Laurie Levenson, a professor at Loyola University Law School in Los Angeles. “I don’t think even the parties know what their next move will be. It changes from hour to hour.” 

The deadline for their maneuvers is Dec. 12 when Florida must certify its electors. 

Bush has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Florida Supreme Court’s ruling that the hand recounts requested by Gore should go forward. The U.S. court has scheduled arguments in the case for Friday. 

Should Bush maintain his lead when the tally is certified, he could drop his appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. That strategy involves a political risk because it would leave in place the votes Gore picks up in the recount — putting the vice president closer to winning in any post-certification contest. 

It has become evident that the outcome of the presidential election will depend heavily on legal sorties by an army of lawyers who have found new challenges in the murky depths of Florida election law. 

“Because we’re in uncharted waters, it’s almost impossible to know all the legal options. They’re being created every day,” said Levenson. “Both sides have the best lawyers available and they’re being very creative and aggressive” 

For now, there are some clear moves ahead: 

—Secretary of State Katherine Harris was to receive the results Sunday of all votes in the state including recounts in scattered counties. 

—The declaration of the final totals opens the door for contests to be filed by the unsuccessful candidate and counter-contests to be filed by the candidate with more votes. 

—Gore lawyers will challenge results in Miami-Dade County where disputed votes were never fully recounted by hand. The canvassing board said they couldn’t finish in time and just quit counting. 

—Bush lawyers have already begun lawsuits challenging the exclusion of overseas and military ballots eliminated for such things as missing postmarks. 

—Gore lawyers may challenge the results from Palm Beach County where multiple problems exist. So-called dimpled ballots were never counted and many voters claimed they were so confused by a “butterfly ballot” form that they mistakenly voted for Pat Buchanan rather than Al Gore. To complicate matters further, the Palm Beach board said Sunday it could not complete its work by the 5 p.m. deadline. 

—A challenge in Seminole County was possible involving some 15,000 absentee ballots amid allegations that Republicans wrongly tampered with ballot applications on behalf of GOP voters. 

“The violations in Seminole County are extraordinary,” said Erwin Chemerinsky, constitutional law professor at University of Southern California. “But it seems unlikely that all absentee ballots would be thrown out because that would disenfranchise voters who cast their ballots properly.” 

Chemerinsky, who has represented voters in Palm Beach on the butterfly ballot issue, said the remedy being sought there would be either a new election or a statistical recount that would transfer some of Buchanan’s votes to Gore. That battle, lost at the circuit court, is now wending its way through appeals court. 

The end of the line for all the legal maneuvering could be Friday’s hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court. 

“The dead end could be the Supreme Court,” said Levenson. “They may direct the participants to where the buck stops.” 

“It seems extraordinary that they are intervening,” she added, “One reason may be to bring finality to a process that seems to have spun out of control.”


Bay Area residents worry about high housing prices

The Associated Press
Monday November 27, 2000

SAN FRANCISCO – High housing costs pose a “major problem” for four of five residents in the San Francisco Bay area’s red-hot property market. 

The percentage of people who say outrageous rents and asking prices would force them to move from the region has nearly doubled in three years. 

Only one of 10 residents say they are “very satisfied” with the availability of housing in the region. 

In a confirmation of what area residents have been bemoaning for several years, a San Francisco Chronicle survey of 1,000 adults across the region found one overriding theme: the San Francisco Bay Area is an expensive place to call home. 

Costs have gotten so high that residents reported housing was more troublesome than even the region’s seemingly nonstop gridlock. 

Residents blamed the blazing economy and the dotcom millionaires it has produced. 

“Silicon Valley salaries are so out of whack with what other professionals are making in the Bay Area that it takes so much more money to live decently,” said Sonia Sotinsky, an architect who moved from Berkeley to Tucson, Ariz., last year. 

The flip side, of course, is that more than 80 percent of people who have already own property believe the value of their house has appreciated greatly in the recent past. 

The newspaper concluded that over time, middle class, skilled workers like plumbers and electricians would leave the area in increasing numbers. 

In a similar 1997 survey, the Chronicle reported that 18 percent of people said they would have to leave the region because of housing costs. That figure climbed to 31 percent this year. 

In September, the National Low Income Housing Coalition ranked San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo counties as the least affordable place to live in the U.S.  

The advocacy group calculated that a worker must earn more than $28 per hour to rent the standard apartment and maintain a decent quality of life. 

The numbers show a dramatic shift since the paper last conducted its poll. Back then, nearly 70 percent of respondents said they were either “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the availability of housing in the area. That total fell to a shade over 30 percent this time. 

Respondents in San Francisco and the high-technology corridor stretching south to San Jose said they felt the pinch most.


FasTrak system to debut on Bay Bridge this week

Daily Planet wire report
Monday November 27, 2000

On Wednesday morning, commuters traveling from the East Bay to San Francisco will be able to use the FasTrak system on two lanes of the Bay Bridge, one of the busiest commute routes in the country. 

Those who have signed up for the program and received their FastTrak transponders will be able to cruise through tollbooth number 11, located at the center of the bridge’s toll plaza. Lane number 12 will be available for both FasTrak users and patrons paying with cash or tickets. 

Caltrans spokesman Colin Jones says that as with the opening phases of FasTrak lanes on other Bay area bridges, he expects it will be some time before most motorists will adapt to the new system. 

“There’s always a little confusion, an adjustment period, maybe a few weeks, for some of the traffic to work itself out,’’ Jones said. 

Although eventuall, the system could prove to alleviate the increasing congestion on the busy bridge, Jones points out that the metering lights will still be in operation in all lanes during busy traffic times. 

The addition of a FasTrak lane to the Bay Bridge brings Caltrans one step closer to its goal of dedicating at least one lane to the system on each of the Bay areas bridges by the end of the year. 

On Dec. 7, the system will make its debut at the Dumbarton Bridge, and a lane on the San Mateo-Hayward and Antioch bridges is expected on Dec. 31.  

Also in December, Caltrans expects to open another mixed-use lane at the Bay Bridge, located on toll booth number 20, on the far right side of the toll plaza. 

Jones said that some 35,000 FasTrak devices have been issued, and Caltrans is receiving some 500 applications every day.  

According to Jones, the number of inquiries about the system have increased some since the announcement of the Bay Bridge FasTrak lane was made. 

Response has been so good, Jones said, that the department of transportation’s toll free number has been overwhelmed with calls. That number is (888) 725-TRAK. Internet users can order an application on line by going to www.dot.gov/fastrak.


Bay briefs

Monday November 27, 2000

Santa Clara voters barely approve bond measure 

SANTA CLARA (AP) — Finally, somebody has finished counting election-day ballots. 

Voters in Santa Clara County narrowly approved a $375 million creek restoration and flood control bond, county officials reported yesterday. 

The water tax proposal authorizes $25 million a year for 15 years to control flood waters, preserve the environment and boost water quality. The average homeowner’s tax bill will rise 39 dollars a year. 

The bond needed a two-thirds majority to pass. It cleared that bar by a mere thousand votes of 480,000 cast. 

 

Car chase ends in crash, arrests 

EAST PALO ALTO (AP) — Some 15 police cruisers chased a carload of suspects in an East Palo Alto shooting across the Dumbarton Bridge, firing shots along the way until the fleeing car crashed Friday evening. 

In the end, police said they arrested eight people, several of them teen-agers. 

The chase began when East Palo Alto police told neighboring departments that a black Chevrolet Suburban had fled the scene of a shooting around 5:20 p.m. Menlo Park Police spotted the car and followed it onto Highway 101. 

The holiday made for light traffic and the car took off over the bridge toward the East Bay at speeds up to 100 mph. 

It crashed on Ardenwood Road in Fremont. Several of the suspects suffered minor injuries, police said. 

The motive for the original shooting was not known. The man injured was taken to Stanford Medical Center. 

 

School district in turmoil 

SAN JOSE (AP) — A tiny school district near San Jose is experiencing big-time problems. 

The superintendent of the Luther Burbank school system has said he will resign and almost half of the district’s teachers promise to follow him. 

The turmoil is shaking the independent school district of 450 students, which is located near San Jose in an unincorporated part of Santa Clara County. 

The problems surfaced several weeks ago when the district’s superintendent, who is also principal of its only school, said he would resign. Superintendent Paul Madarang cited “irreconcilable and philosophical differences” with the district’s school board. 

Following his lead, eleven teachers and four other staff said they too would quit at the end of the school year. 

The district has been facing financial troubles, including the loss of a large federal grant for bilingual education. 

 

Gunman takes shot at police, ends up dead 

DALY CITY (AP) — A gunman who fled a highway median and fired at least one shot at police was killed Thanksgiving Day, police said. 

The man’s identity is being withheld, pending identification through the San Mateo County Coroner’s Officer. 

California Highway Patrol officers spotted the man alone in the center divider of Highway 280 Thursday night just opposite the southbound Westlake off ramp. 

Officers said they tried to talk him, but noticed he was carrying a handgun. The man then took cover in a wooded area. 

Daly City police were called to the scene as backup. Police exchanged gunfire with the man. The suspect was pronounced dead on scene.


Skate park halted due to contamination

By Judith Scherr Daily Planet Staff
Sunday November 26, 2000

Work has halted on the skateboard park near Fifth and Harrison streets following a Friday morning emergency meeting among city officials and skate park enthusiasts. 

Last week, the carcinogen chromium 6 was found in ground water seeping up into the deepest bowls carved out in the skate park’s construction phase. The City Council authorized $100,000 to pump the water out of the skate bowls and into tanks and to hire an independent toxicologist. 

But Friday, city officials decided to change course somewhat and discontinue pumping out the contaminated water. 

Chromium 6 or hexavalent chrome is an odorless chemical whose uses include hardening steel and making paint pigments. The known carcinogen is dangerous when ingested, city officials said, noting, however, that it does not enter the drinking water supply.  

The source of the skatepark contamination is thought to be a years-old “plume” – ground water with the contaminant – originating at Western Roto Engravers Color Tech at 1225 Sixth Street.  

Lisa Caronna, director of the Parks and Waterfront Department and Nabil Al Hadithy, division head for toxics, met on the skateboard site Friday morning with skatepark enthusiasts to contemplate next steps. 

Filling tanks with contaminated water and hauling them away at $14,000 each is not practical, they decided Friday, so the department is trying another tack.  

“We will turn off the pumps so the ground water can rise in the (two deepest) bowls,” Al Hadithy said. These bowls will be filled with gravel. 

The gravel allows the bowls to maintain their shape and at the same time acts as a deterrent for animals and children who might be attracted to the hole. 

If a child’s ball goes over the fence into the gravel pit, for example, it will disappear behind the gravel, so that a child will not attempt to go after it, Al Hadithy said, noting also that there will be a security guard posted at the site at all times. 

The three shallower bowls will be filled with concrete, so that they maintain their shape, while the city is deciding the skatepark’s future, Al Hadithy continued.  

After filling the bowls with concrete and allowing the water to rise in them, the chrome 6 must be filtered out of the water. The city has hired two different firms to explore ways of doing that. 

The 6.4 acre site at Fifth and Harrison streets, that includes a soccer field, was purchased from UC Berkeley last year for $2.8 million. The city tested the groundwater but did not find contaminants at that time.  

“The preliminary testing did not go to the lower threshold,” Caronna said Friday. 

Asked why the city could not build the skateboard higher, above the groundwater level, Al Hadithy said the plan was to make the park completely visible to Berkeley Police Department officials who can ride by and see what is happening there at a glance. Were the park built higher, the skaters would be less visible, he said. 

At this point, it is not known who will foot the bill for cleaning up the property – the city, the company thought responsible for the contamination, or the university which sold the property to the city. The question could end up in the courts. 

What the skateboarders want to know is when their park will be ready for them. 

The toxicologist should be putting out a comprehensive statement next week after which city officials may have a better idea of what the future holds. 

“The goal is to complete a skatepark,” Caronna said, adding that the city will take a conservative and safe approach. 

Asked if she believes the park will be built, Caronna answered, “I do – in some form.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Homeless vet grateful for generosity

By Millicent Mayfield Special to the Daily Planet
Sunday November 26, 2000

For two weeks John Christian has been sitting in front of the downtown Berkeley BART station on Shattuck Avenue each day, asking for change. And so far, the people of Berkeley have come through. 

Christian said he is so impressed with the city’s generosity and tolerance that he has sought out the media to pass along his public message of thanks. 

“The people here in Berkeley have been so good to me,” said the 40-year-old Christian. “I’ve panhandled in lots of places, but the people in Berkeley are loving, caring, sharing people.” 

Modesto Fernandez is one of the people who stops and chats with Christian on Friday and gives him a McDonald’s gift certificate. 

In addition to feeling a moral responsibility toward the homeless, Fernandez is also a Vietnam veteran and the two share their experiences of the war. Fernandez is angry with the lack of respect people show for homeless veterans. 

“It really upsets me. I could be where they are,” he said. “If you’ve ever been out there in the field, on the streets and you know what it feels like to walk around in wet socks, you can appreciate dry socks.” 

Christian is actively seeking a job as a bus driver and one day hopes to qualify as a BART engineer. For now, he’s content to hold up a felt-penned cardboard sign looking for a little generosity to see him through. 

“I feel this is no way to go through life but right now I have no choice,” he said. 

In Berkeley, Christian averages $30 to $40 a day in “tips,” which is good considering he only makes about $7 a day in San Francisco. In addition to food and medicine, he uses the money he gains from panhandling to support a three-pack-a-day cigarette habit. 

Christian came to the Bay Area two months ago looking for work.  

Lifelong bouts with depression and diabetes have made this search difficult and as a result, he’s been staying at the City Team Ministries’ homeless shelter in Oakland. 

Everyday he must sign in to receive a bed for the night. If none are available, he simply sleeps underneath a bridge somewhere or tries another shelter in the area. 

Christian said police officers in Oakland suggested he panhandle in Berkeley, saying the city was more tolerant of homeless. A person who answered the phone at the Oakland Police Department, however, denied this was their method of eradicating the homeless in their city. She did not give her name. 

Christian said he finds Berkeley a pleasant change from his experiences in Oakland where he’s been robbed several times. He’s especially impressed with the police in Berkeley and refers to them as “dignified” in the way they deal with the homeless. 

Ethridge Marks, a BART police officer who was in the area on Friday, agrees that the police in Berkeley seem to be more tolerant of the homeless population. 

“There’s probably more compassion in the city of Berkeley,” Marks said. “I think it should be the duty of every police officer to be compassionate to the people they serve. Just because a person is homeless doesn’t mean you shouldn’t serve them.” 

Christian was born in Connecticut in 1960 and joined the Army in 1978. Eventually, he was honorably discharged because of his flat feet, which hindered his ability to run. Over the years, he’s worked as a charter bus and taxi driver and at one point owned his own parcel delivery business before making his way out to the West Coast. 

He went on disability in 1991 due to back problems and depression, something he’s dealt with all his life. He was scared on the first night he spent in a homeless shelter in 1996. He was concerned about sharing such little space with so many strangers and the possibility of diseases spreading. But he’s learned to adjust because there are “certain things in life that you have to do.” 

Christian easily totes around his worldly possessions in a medium-sized piece of luggage. In it he carries various legal documents, a pillow and two of the three shirts he owns. He wears his only pair of pants along with a pair of 20-year-old cross country ski boots on his feet. At 297 pounds, he says it’s hard to find clothes that fit him at thrift stores. 

His curly, black hair is peppered with gray, which he says has increased over the last three years due to stress. 

“My age is coming on very fast right now,” he said. 

However, Christian fears earthquakes more than he fears death and lives a simple life, needing little more than the generosity of Berkeley’s community. 

“Homeless vet needs your help,” he calls out to the passing crowd adding, “That’s my favorite line.” 

 

 

 


Skate park halted due to contamination

By Judith Scherr Daily Planet Staff
Saturday November 25, 2000

Work has halted on the skateboard park near Fifth and Harrison streets following a Friday morning emergency meeting among city officials and skate park enthusiasts. 

Last week, the carcinogen chromium 6 was found in ground water seeping up into the deepest bowls carved out in the skate park’s construction phase. The City Council authorized $100,000 to pump the water out of the skate bowls and into tanks and to hire an independent toxicologist. 

But Friday, city officials decided to change course somewhat and discontinue pumping out the contaminated water. 

Chromium 6 or hexavalent chrome is an odorless chemical whose uses include hardening steel and making paint pigments. The known carcinogen is dangerous when ingested, city officials said, noting, however, that it does not enter the drinking water supply.  

The source of the skatepark contamination is thought to be a years-old “plume” – ground water with the contaminant – originating at Western Roto Engravers Color Tech at 1225 Sixth Street.  

Lisa Caronna, director of the Parks and Waterfront Department and Nabil Al Hadithy, division head for toxics, met on the skateboard site Friday morning with skatepark enthusiasts to contemplate next steps. 

Filling tanks with contaminated water and hauling them away at $14,000 each is not practical, they decided Friday, so the department is trying another tack.  

“We will turn off the pumps so the ground water can rise in the (two deepest) bowls,” Al Hadithy said. These bowls will be filled with gravel. 

The gravel allows the bowls to maintain their shape and at the same time acts as a deterrent for animals and children who might be attracted to the hole. 

If a child’s ball goes over the fence into the gravel pit, for example, it will disappear behind the gravel, so that a child will not attempt to go after it, Al Hadithy said, noting also that there will be a security guard posted at the site at all times. 

The three shallower bowls will be filled with concrete, so that they maintain their shape, while the city is deciding the skatepark’s future, Al Hadithy continued.  

After filling the bowls with concrete and allowing the water to rise in them, the chrome 6 must be filtered out of the water. The city has hired two different firms to explore ways of doing that. 

The 6.4 acre site at Fifth and Harrison streets, that includes a soccer field, was purchased from UC Berkeley last year for $2.8 million. The city tested the groundwater but did not find contaminants at that time.  

“The preliminary testing did not go to the lower threshold,” Caronna said Friday. 

Asked why the city could not build the skateboard higher, above the groundwater level, Al Hadithy said the plan was to make the park completely visible to Berkeley Police Department officials who can ride by and see what is happening there at a glance. Were the park built higher, the skaters would be less visible, he said. 

At this point, it is not known who will foot the bill for cleaning up the property – the city, the company thought responsible for the contamination, or the university which sold the property to the city. The question could end up in the courts. 

What the skateboarders want to know is when their park will be ready for them. 

The toxicologist should be putting out a comprehensive statement next week after which city officials may have a better idea of what the future holds. 

“The goal is to complete a skatepark,” Caronna said, adding that the city will take a conservative and safe approach. 

Asked if she believes the park will be built, Caronna answered, “I do – in some form.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Calendar of Events & Activities

Saturday November 25, 2000


Saturday, Nov. 25

 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612 

 

Create the City of Your  

Fantasies 

7:30 - 11 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. This evening features DJ’d “Candlelight Massage Circles Salon.”  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

Children’s Benefit Concert 

11 a.m. - Noon 

College Ave. Presbyterian Church  

5951 College Ave.  

Oakland  

A concert to benefit Lillian Wamalwa, who would like to go to Kenya to help her sister, who has AIDS, and her four children.  

$6 suggested donation 

Call 925-376-3543 

 

Papersong Grand Opening Celebration 

Noon - 5 p.m.  

Swan’s Marketplace 

936B Clay St.  

Oakland 

Featuring free musical performances by Big Brother & The Holding Co., Caravan of All Stars Revue, The Charles Dudley Band, and Jane DeCuir.  

Call 436-5131 

 

Making Marriage Work 

(event is 10 Wednesdays, Nov. 29 - Jan. 24) 

7:30 - 9:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay, Berkeley 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

For Jewish and interfaith couples either considering marriages, engaged or recently married. Focusing on topics to improve the relationship and bridging religious and ethnic differences to strengthen the marriage.  

$360 per couple  

Call 704-7475 


Sunday, Nov. 26

 

The Value of Meditation 

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 

Joleen Vries, director of the Nyingma Institute in the Netherlands for over five years, will discuss how to maintain a regular meditation practice. Free 843-6812 

 


Monday, Nov. 27

 

To Make the World Whole 

7:30 - 9 p.m.  

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Bay Area musician Mark Levy discusses songs of peace, protest and change from labor, feminists, peace, and environmental activists of the past 125 years, that inspired others to action. 

Tuition for all three classes: $30 general public; $20 JJC members, seniors and students 

Individual classes: $10 general; $8 JJC members, seniors and students  

Call 848-0237 

 

Parks & Recreation Board 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Solid Waste Management  

Commission 

7 p.m. 

Solid Waste Management Center 

1201 Second St.  

 

Zoning Adjustment Board  

Meeting 

7 p.m. 

2134 MLK Jr. Way  

Council Chambers, 2nd Floor 

 

Educational Philosophies  

Roundtable 

7 - 9 p.m.  

Epworth United Methodist Church 

1953 Hopkins St.  

At this roundtable, Sponsored by the Neighborhood Parents Network, parents will learn about the following educational philosophies: Developmental, cooperative, Montessori, bilingual, Waldorf, religious, homeschooling, and charter schools.  

Free to members; non-members, $5 Call 527-6667 or visit  

www.parentsnet.org  

Tai Chi Chih with Ben Levitan  

1 p.m.  

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Call Maggie or Suzanne, 644-6107 

 


Tuesday, Nov. 28M

 

Blood Pressure for Seniors 

9:30 - 11 a.m.  

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Call Maggie or Suzanne, 644-6107 

 

Read a Play Together Salon 

7:30 - 10:30 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies.  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

Lavender Lunch 

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. 

Pacific School of Religion  

1798 Scenic Ave.  

Mudd 100 

PSR adjunct faculty member Mark Wilson and PSR alumna Lynice Pinkard will speak on “Heterosexism and Racism.”  

Sponsored by PSR’s Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry. Free 

Call 849-8206 

 

Making Marriage Work 

(event is 10 Wednesdays, Nov. 29 - Jan. 24) 

7:30 - 9:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay, Berkeley 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

For Jewish and interfaith couples either considering marriages, engaged or recently married. Focusing on topics to improve the relationship and bridging religious and ethnic differences to strengthen the marriage.  

$360 per couple  

Call 704-7475 

—compiled by  

Chason Wainwright 

 

 


Wednesday, Nov. 29

 

Wanderlust: Tales of  

Adventure and Romance 

7:30 p.m.  

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave. (at Rose) 

Jeff Greenwald and other travel writers discuss the art of writing travel literature and how to make a living doing it.  

Call 843-3533 

 

Berkeley Gray Panthers  

Membership Meeting 

1:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Discussion of how the election results will affect the Gray Panthers.  

Call 548-9696 

 

Mental Health Commission 

6:30 p.m. 

2640 MLK Jr. Way (at Derby) 

 

Challenges of Parenting Adolescents  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

This workshop focuses on the challenges facing parents and teens. Learn how to avoid triggering and pushing each other’s buttons. Runs three consecutive Wednesdays, through Dec. 13. Led by Kathy Langsam, MA, MFT, JFCS Teen Services Coordinator.  

$60 

Call 704-7475 

 


Thursday, Nov. 30

 

Pro Arts Juried Show  

Reception 

6 - 8 p.m.  

Pro Arts 

461 Ninth St.  

Oakland 

With the work of 70 artists, this annual show features the work of emerging and mid-career artists. The show runs through December 30. See A&E calendar for details.  

 

Snowshoeing Basics  

7 p.m . 

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Professional snowshoe guide Cathy Anderson-Meyers gives basic instruction on how to get out and experience Tahoe’s winter terrain on “shoes.”  

Call 527-4140 

 

Art for Sale 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Kala Art Institute  

1060 Heinz Ave.  

Over sixty artists affiliated with the Kala Art Institute exhibit works ranging from traditional wood block prints to works in digital media. During the reception, artists will offer 10 percent off the sale of their prints.  

549-2977 

 

Oakland Museum Trip for Seniors 

(trip on Dec. 8) 

A trip to the Oakland Museum to see the Imperial Palace of China Exhibit. Organized by the North Berkeley Senior Center 

Call Maggie, 644-6107 

 

Let Your Chi Flow Freely 

6 - 7 p.m.  

University of Creation Spirituality 

2141 Broadway Ave. 

Oakland 

Share peace and tranquillity communally and regain harmony and balance.  

Call Idris Hassan, 835-4827 x31  

 

Witness In Our Time 

7 p.m.  

105 North Gate Hall 

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism 

Center for Photography 

Kerry Tremain moderates a conversation with Wayne Miller, Ken Light, Matt Heron and Michelle Vignes. Followed by a book signing for “Chicago’s South Side” by Wayne Miller and “Witness in Our Time” by Ken Light. 

Call 642-3383  

 


Friday, Dec. 1

 

Spanish Book Club 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody’s Books  

2454 Telegraph Ave.  

A discussion of “Dona Barbara” by the Colombian writer Rumulo Gallegos. New members welcome. The group meets the first Friday of each month.  

Call 601-0454  

 

Taize Worship Services  

7:30 - 8:30 p.m.  

Loper Chapel  

Dana St. (between Durant & Channing) 

Call 848-3696 

 

Basic Electrical Theory 

7 - 10 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Redwood Kardon, retired City of Oakland building inspector and author of the Code Check book series.  

$35 

Call 525-7610 

 


Saturday, Dec. 2

 

Wild About Books? 

10:30 a.m. 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

Storyteller Kellmar draws from her African-American roots with stories that touch the heart and the funnybone. For childen aged 3-7. 

Call 649-3943  

 

Whymsium Anniversary Party 

7:30 - 11 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. This annual party features a talent show, games and a dance.  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

UC Botanical Holiday Plant Sale 

10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden  

200 Centennial Dr.  

You’ll find a selection of orchids, ferns, rhododendrons, cacti, hardy herbs, and house plants galore for yourself or gardening friends.  

Call 643-2755 

 

Native American Flute  

5 - 6 p.m. 

Gathering Tribes Gallery  

1573 Solano Ave.  

Celebrating the release of his CD “Spirit Within,” Berkeley resident and flutist Walter Ogi Johnson performs.  

 

Finding a Way In 

7 - 9 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Offering a safe space for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender jews to express personal concerns and to find a place to belong in the Jewish community.  

$5 with pre-registraiton; $7 at door  

845-6420 

 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Know Your Rights Training 

11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

Copwatch Office  

2022 Blake St.  

Learn what your rights are in dealing with the police. Learn how to monitor the police safely.  

Call 548-0425 

 

Publish Your Own Book 

10 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Regent Press 

6020-A Adeline St. 

Mark Weiman of Regen Press presents an overview of the business of book publishing oriented towards the author considering self-publishing.  

$60 per person 

Call Mark Weiman, 547-7602 

 

Friends of Berkeley Youth Alternatives 

Wine Tasting  

1 - 4 p.m. 

Rosenblum Cellars 

2900 Main St.  

Alameda 

All proceeds benefit the children and families served by Berkeley Youth Alternatives. 

$25 

Call 845-9010 

 

Alternative Building Materials 

10 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Seminar taught by architects Dan Smith and John Fordice. 

$75  

Call 525-7610 

 

Compiled by Chason Wainwright 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Letters to the Editor

Saturday November 25, 2000

Christians’ role must be examined 

Editor: 

In your November 16 opinion piece “Perspective,” the faculty of the Pacific School of Religion decry the ghettoization (though they avoid using the word) of Palestinians by Israelis, and call for support of PLO diplomatic positions. Many may agree with these sentiments. But coming from a European Christian seminary, this perspective needs acknowledgment of the Christian role in creating the situation. The Crusaders’ atrocities on Moslems, Jews and Eastern Christians exceed all massacres worldwide since the Second World War. In particular, their trashing of the Jewish Temple facilitated later construction of the mosque that is the recent flash point. Unless you have edited out their acknowledgment, their position reeks of ignorance at best, and the old race-hatred at worst. 

 

Mark Tatz 

Berkeley 

Mom continues to pray for son 

Editor: 

Last week, my son Jeffrey Schilling spoke over Radio Mindanao. I am thankful to know that he is still alive and that he still has some small measure of hope. However, I am distressed that he is still being held captive and that he has so many health problems. He is coughing up blood and he has a swollen leg from an infection. I pray that the people holding Jeffrey will let him go so he can receive proper medical care. I thank everyone who has been praying for Jeffrey and for his wife Ivy. Please continue your prayers. 

Carol Schilling 

Oakland 

 

Horrified at police comment 

Editor: 

We were horrified to read Lt. Lopes’ comments that the alleged junior-high gang rape victim possessed “some type of mental capacity that allows her to be duped into these situations... She makes the same mistakes over and over again.” To see a police officer perpetuate the myth that the victim must have somehow asked for it is an outrage. When this attitude is expressed by the spokesperson for the police department, its effects are particularly harmful: seeing her experience belittled will surely deter other men and women from reporting abuse. Our police must challenge the history of oppression which blames the victims of violence. Nobody, no matter how short her skirt, asks to be raped. 

Ben Harvey, Amy Hofer, Nik Putnam, Sara Tolley 

Berkeley 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Women hoopsters fall to Alabama, still winless

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Saturday November 25, 2000

New coach Horstmeyer starts 0-3 with Bears 

 

First-year head coach Caren Horstmeyer’s career at Cal has gotten off to a rocky start. The Bears extended their losing streak to three to begin the season, falling to the Alabama Crimson Tide 76-63 in the opening round of the University of Illinois at Chicago Thanksgiving Tournament Friday night at UIC Pavilion. 

The Tide were led by Shondra Johnson, who scored a game-high 29 points. She was helped by Sparkle Johnson’s 14 points and 10 rebounds, with Beth Vice scoring 13 and Joni Crenshaw 10. Alabama improved to 3-0 with the victory. 

Alabama roared out of the gate to open a 16-5 lead just five minutes into the game, keyed by Vice’s two three-pointers. Cal responded with a 9-1 run of their own. But the Bears were held scoreless for seven minutes after that run, allowing the Tide to widen its lead back to 10 points, leading to a 32-21 halftime lead. 

Horstmeyer’s squad came out strong in the second half, cutting the deficit to six in less than five minutes, but Alabama refused to let them back in the game. 

“We need to be able to get over the hump and be more mentally tough,” Horstmeyer said. 

The Tide increased its lead back up to its halftime lead of 11 the next two minutes and its biggest lead of the game of 15 at 57-42 with 7:43 on the clock. The Bears then cut the lead to seven points on several occasions, with the last being after a Brook Coulter three-pointer at 4:12 that made the score 59-52, but they could get no closer and went quietly into the Chicago night. 

The Bears lost despite a career-high 27 points from guard Courtney Johnson, who also had two rebounds, two assists and four steals in the game. Her all-around effort portends good things for Cal; if Johnson can control the game from point guard, it will free up shooting guards Kenya Corley and Becky Staubes to snipe away from the outside.  

But the Bears lack of an inside presence showed against the Crimson Tide, with Alabama out-rebounding the Bears 39-32 as Cal forwards Amber White and Ami Forney pulled down seven rebounds apiece. 

The rough start doesn’t seem to worry Horstmeyer, however. She seems more intent on getting the team ready for the conference season. 

“We’ve opened the season with three difficult games,” Horstmeyer said. We’re hoping the tough schedule will pay off comes the Pac-10 season.”  

Cal faces the loser of the Illinois-Chicago vs. South Alabama game tomorrow at 1 p.m.


Homeless vet grateful for generosity

By Millicent Mayfield Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday November 25, 2000

 

 

For two weeks John Christian has been sitting in front of the downtown Berkeley BART station on Shattuck Avenue each day, asking for change. And so far, the people of Berkeley have come through. 

Christian said he is so impressed with the city’s generosity and tolerance that he has sought out the media to pass along his public message of thanks. 

“The people here in Berkeley have been so good to me,” said the 40-year-old Christian. “I’ve panhandled in lots of places, but the people in Berkeley are loving, caring, sharing people.” 

Modesto Fernandez is one of the people who stops and chats with Christian on Friday and gives him a McDonald’s gift certificate. 

In addition to feeling a moral responsibility toward the homeless, Fernandez is also a Vietnam veteran and the two share their experiences of the war. Fernandez is angry with the lack of respect people show for homeless veterans. 

“It really upsets me. I could be where they are,” he said. “If you’ve ever been out there in the field, on the streets and you know what it feels like to walk around in wet socks, you can appreciate dry socks.” 

Christian is actively seeking a job as a bus driver and one day hopes to qualify as a BART engineer. For now, he’s content to hold up a felt-penned cardboard sign looking for a little generosity to see him through. 

“I feel this is no way to go through life but right now I have no choice,” he said. 

In Berkeley, Christian averages $30 to $40 a day in “tips,” which is good considering he only makes about $7 a day in San Francisco. In addition to food and medicine, he uses the money he gains from panhandling to support a three-pack-a-day cigarette habit. 

Christian came to the Bay Area two months ago looking for work.  

Lifelong bouts with depression and diabetes have made this search difficult and as a result, he’s been staying at the City Team Ministries’ homeless shelter in Oakland. 

Everyday he must sign in to receive a bed for the night. If none are available, he simply sleeps underneath a bridge somewhere or tries another shelter in the area. 

Christian said police officers in Oakland suggested he panhandle in Berkeley, saying the city was more tolerant of homeless. A person who answered the phone at the Oakland Police Department, however, denied this was their method of eradicating the homeless in their city. She did not give her name. 

Christian said he finds Berkeley a pleasant change from his experiences in Oakland where he’s been robbed several times. He’s especially impressed with the police in Berkeley and refers to them as “dignified” in the way they deal with the homeless. 

Ethridge Marks, a BART police officer who was in the area on Friday, agrees that the police in Berkeley seem to be more tolerant of the homeless population. 

“There’s probably more compassion in the city of Berkeley,” Marks said. “I think it should be the duty of every police officer to be compassionate to the people they serve. Just because a person is homeless doesn’t mean you shouldn’t serve them.” 

Christian was born in Connecticut in 1960 and joined the Army in 1978. Eventually, he was honorably discharged because of his flat feet, which hindered his ability to run. Over the years, he’s worked as a charter bus and taxi driver and at one point owned his own parcel delivery business before making his way out to the West Coast. 

He went on disability in 1991 due to back problems and depression, something he’s dealt with all his life. He was scared on the first night he spent in a homeless shelter in 1996. He was concerned about sharing such little space with so many strangers and the possibility of diseases spreading. But he’s learned to adjust because there are “certain things in life that you have to do.” 

Christian easily totes around his worldly possessions in a medium-sized piece of luggage. In it he carries various legal documents, a pillow and two of the three shirts he owns. He wears his only pair of pants along with a pair of 20-year-old cross country ski boots on his feet. At 297 pounds, he says it’s hard to find clothes that fit him at thrift stores. 

His curly, black hair is peppered with gray, which he says has increased over the last three years due to stress. 

“My age is coming on very fast right now,” he said. 

However, Christian fears earthquakes more than he fears death and lives a simple life, needing little more than the generosity of Berkeley’s community. 

“Homeless vet needs your help,” he calls out to the passing crowd adding, “That’s my favorite line.” 

 

 

 


Cal signs member of Croatian national volleyball team

Daily Planet Wire Services
Saturday November 25, 2000

The University of California women’s volleyball program has signed Mia Jerkov to a National Letter of Intent, it was announced by Golden Bear head coach Rich Feller.  

Jerkov (pronounced her-cove), a 6-3 outside hitter from Split, Croatia, is Cal’s most highly touted signee since Feller became the Bears coach in December of 1998. She attends the High School of Language-Pula and plays volleyball for coach Boris Brescic of the Pula-Istarska club team.  

Jerkov has also been a member of the Croatian Junior National Team since 1998 and was a member of the Croatian Senior National Team in 2000. She has competed in several Junior World Championships and competed in this past summer’s World Cup in Japan. Jerkov was named the Best Under 18 Attacker for Croatia in both 1999 and 2000. Her father, Zeljko, is a former player on the Croatian National Basketball Team.  

“Mia brings with her years of high level international experience,” said Feller. “Although only 17 years old, she has played volleyball in several World Championships for the Croatian National and Junior National Teams. Mia is talented and intelligent. Her goal is to become one of the best volleyball players in the world. Mia told me that she believes that a college education will give her additional lifelong tools and help her accomplish that goal. She will not only add her volleyball skills to our team, but will bring with her cultural and competitive experiences that will benefit Cal’s program in many ways. We are very pleased to have Mia Jerkov joining the Golden Bear family next year.”


Residents angry with AC Transit

By Juliet Leyba Daily Planet Staff
Saturday November 25, 2000

A long-time Berkeley resident and public transportation user is more upset than a baby’s stomach after eating hot links. And that’s all Candice Etter said she wanted – hot links.  

Instead she said she endured a nightmarish experience on Berkeley’s Alameda Contra Costa Transportation system Nov. 4 that she said made her sick to her stomach. 

“The only place around here that sells Terrible Toms Hot Links is Albertsons up by Rockridge,” Etter said. “That’s all I wanted but that’s not all I got.”  

Etter says she and a handful of other flatland dwellers waited on University Avenue and Sacramento Street for 40 minutes for a No. 51 bus that never came. 

Finally a No. 52-L came and dropped her and five other angry riders off at Shattuck Avenue. She waited there for almost an hour. 

“It was awful that wait. It was cold and there was a busload of people all standing outside the BART station, waiting for a (No.) 52.” 

When the bus finally pulled up Etter said that people were pushing and shoving to get aboard and that within a few minutes it was filled to capacity and she along with several others were left standing on the curb. 

“Along came a (No.) 7 bus so I got on that one hoping to get a little further along. What a mistake that was.” 

Unfortunately, there was a University of California at Berkeley football game that day and the No. 7 bus got caught in traffic. 

Etter said she finally reached her destination at about 6 p.m., three and a half hours after she locked her front door and stepped onto Sacramento Street. 

The following day she called AC Transit to complain and said she was met with indifference. 

“I spoke with the superintendent and he didn’t even apologize and then said that it was too bad and there was nothing he could do.” 

A sentiment AC Transit Supervisor Ben Davis reiterated to the Daily Planet Friday. 

“Anytime there is a game, traffic backs up on University. I’ve been here for 30 years and the buses have always run extremely late on those days.”  

Davis also said that it was unfortunate but that there aren’t any viable alternatives. 

“Obtaining special permits so that buses can take short detours through residential areas on game days would never fly with residents. In addition, it would mean getting special permits from the city – a very lengthy process.” 

 

 

 


Local star, national champ commit to Cal crew team

Daily Planet Wire Services
Saturday November 25, 2000

The Cal women’s crew team received two important commitments during last week’s early signing period for the National Letter of Intent. Two of the top recruits in the country, Shaina Kennedy and Laura Terheyden, signed NLI’s and will be joining the Golden Bears next fall.  

Coxswain Shaina Kennedy of Seattle, WA led the Green Lake junior boys crew to victory at last June’s US Rowing Youth Invitational, which is regarded as the junior national championship regatta. Recognized as the best coxswain in the country, Kennedy went on to cox the U.S. junior women to a fourth place finish at the world championships in Zagreb, Croatia.  

Her experience coxing the boys at Green Lake combined with her international racing make well suited to lead the Cal women in the years ahead. Kennedy chose Cal over Washington and Brown.  

“Everyone is thrilled that Shaina will be joining us next year. She has a terrific attitude and spirit, and I expect her to play a significant role in the years ahead,” said head coach Dave O’Neill.  

Laura Terheyden of San Francisco’s St. Ignatius H.S. has also committed to join Cal next fall. Terheyden is the cornerstone of the SI program, which has won the last two state championships and placed third at this year’s Youth Invitational.  

Along with Shaina Kennedy, Terheyden competed at the world championships in the U.S. junior women’s eight, which placed fourth. She chose Cal over Michigan, Virginia, and Washington.  

“Laura is not only one of the strongest women in the country but also a fine technical rower,” said O’Neill. “Her positive outlook and terrific work ethic have made her one the best junior rowers in the country, and our program is the perfect fit for her.”  

With the commitments of Kennedy and Terheyden combined with current Cal frosh Teresa Oja, the women’s crew will have one third of the 2000 junior women’s national team eight.  

“We are committed to recruiting the best to our program, and the addition of Shaina and Laura already makes next year’s recruiting class a great one. Cal women’s crew will be fast for years to come,” said O’Neill.


PG&E tops in complaints statewide

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. received 56 percent of the total number of consumer gas and electric complaints filed statewide between 1997 and 1999, according to the California Public Utilities Commission. 

PG&E received more than three times the number of customer complaints as its southern counterpart, San Diego Gas and Electric, during the same time period, a San Francisco Chronicle analysis found. 

PG&E got the bulk of complaints even though it only has 39 percent of gas customers and 46 percent of electric customers served by the state’s regulated utilities. 

Nearly three out of four customer complaints filed involved billing problems. 

PG&E spokesman Ron Low said the high percentage of complaints is attributed to tougher terrain and harsher weather in northern California, which leads to more downed power lines and outages. 

The utility’s service stretches north to the Oregon border and east to the Sierra Nevada. San Diego Gas and Electric serves a more compact urban area around the city. 

Many of the consumer complaints also are linked to collection of delinquent bills, Low said. PG&E has increased its efforts to collect on unpaid bills and it is now often requiring deposits from customers with bad credit. 

The utilities commission received more than 17,000 complaints for PG&E out of an analysis of more than 30,000 from 1997 to 1999, the Chronicle found.


School holding canned food drive

Daily Planet Staff Report
Saturday November 25, 2000

Got canned food? 

The John Muir Elementary School is looking for contributions for its 2000 Holiday Food Drive for the Alameda County Food Bank. Those who haven’t already done so, can drop off a can of meat, fruit or vegetables, soup, stew or other non-perishable goods that they’ve been squirreling away in their cupboards for a rainy day. 

The address is: 2955 Claremont Avenue or call 649-1496 for more information.


Retrofit course for contractors

Daily Planet wire services
Saturday November 25, 2000

The magnitude 5.2 Napa-Yountville earthquake in September 2000 caused $50-$100 million of damage. When a magnitude 7.1 earthquake occurs on the Hayward fault, we expect over 150,000 housing units to be made uninhabitable, over 350,000 people to be forced from their homes, and over 110,000 people to require public shelter.  

Contractors, builders and city,county building inspectors can help reduce these numbers by ensuring that Bay Area homes are appropriately retrofitted.  

A workshop entitled Earthquake Retrofit of Wood-Frame Homes will be held on Saturday, December 2, 2000 at the Napa County Landmarks Building in Napa, and again on Saturday, January 20, 2001 at the MetroCenter Auditorium in Oakland. 

The full-day course includes training in earthquake basics, housing damage statistics, proper shear wall and cripple wall construction, connections, foundations, nonstructural items, safety issues, and minimizing liability exposure. 

After each workshop, from 6 pm-8 pm, ABAG will offer help to homeowners on initiating the retrofit process.  

The workshop is supported in part with funding from the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG).  

The East Bay training is also supported by Berkeley’s Office of Emergency Services and Project Impact, and Oakland’s Project SAFE. Cost for the workshop is $125 including a 220 page workbook and meals; discounts can be obtained through www.abag.ca.gov/abag/events/retrofit, the ABAG Web site.  

For information, call Michael Smith at ABAG, 510-464-7948.


County to give away free marijuana to AIDS patients

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

SAN MATEO — The federal Drug Enforcement Administration approved a program Wednesday that will allow San Mateo County to give away government-grown marijuana to 60 AIDS patients as part of a first-of-its-kind study to assess the potential benefits of the drug. 

The 12-week study could begin as early as January. One county supervisor hailed approval of the study. 

“What we could end up with is scientific proof that this is a medicine that should be prescribed by doctors,” said San Mateo County Supervisor Mike Nevin. 

In 1996, Californians passed Proposition 215, which allows possession, cultivation and use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.  

Implementation of the measure has proven difficult, however, as lawmakers struggle to agree on guidelines for prescribing and distributing the drug. 

In addition to DEA approval, San Mateo’s marijuana study had to pass muster with the Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Drug Abuse and the Food and Drug 

Dr. Dennis Israelski will oversee the study in which marijuana will be given to HIV and AIDS patients who suffer from neurological disorders. 

Those in favor of the study hope it will provide new insight to marijuana and determine whether it relieves pain and increases appetites as many users claim.  

Dr. Donald Abrams of the University of California at San Francisco recently concluded a study of medical marijuana and found that 20 AIDS patients who smoked the drug for three weeks gained 7.7 pounds more than 22 others who smoke a placebo. 

Believers in marijuana’s benefits say the drug also settles the stomach, builds weight and steadies spastic muscles. They also speak of relief from PMS, glaucoma, itching, insomnia, arthritis, depression, childbirth and attention deficit disorder. 

Participants in San Mateo County’s study will get their stash from the San Mateo County Health Center. If the study is successful, follow up trials for cancer and glaucoma patients would likely follow. 

“We hope this is just a beginning,” said Margaret Taylor, the county’s health services director. 

Supervisor Nevin opposes decriminalizing marijuana, but said the medicinal value needs further evaluation. 

“To disallow the drug to people who need it is a crime,” Nevin said.


Century-long growth restrictions for Stanford

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

STANFORD — Nestled at the base of oak-studded foothills, Stanford University attracts some of the country’s brightest minds to a place where the high-tech firms that drive Silicon Valley are mere minutes from hiking and horseback riding. 

But the future of those foothills is unclear. The university has agreed reluctantly to protect them for the next 25 years, while a Santa Clara County supervisor wants them to remain undeveloped for the next 99 years. Environmentalists are demanding permanent protection of 1,000 acres of serene grassland, home to the threatened tiger salamander. 

Stanford officials worry that if the campus cannot expand, some of the university’s 14,000 students and 1,640 faculty will be priced out of the area. Although university officials say they have no plans to build on the surrounding hillsides, the current housing crunch adds pressure to expand. 

In nearby Palo Alto, the average price of a house is almost $460,000. The university wants to build more than 3,000 additional low-cost housing units on campus in the next decade to ease the strain on students and staff. 

“We are at a competitive disadvantage with our peer schools – the Dukes, the Northwesterns - because people can’t afford the rents here,” said Andrew Coe, Stanford’s director of community relations. 

Stanford’s 10-year growth plan includes adding two more stories to two-story graduate student housing and building more housing and academic facilities on open areas within the campus boundaries. 

Santa Clara County supervisors are reviewing the 10-year plan and will vote on it Monday. 

The university proposes protecting up to 1,000 acres for 25 years, though the university could protect less space if it constructs under 2 million square feet of new buildings. Stanford owns a total of 8,180 acres. 

Supervisor Joe Simitian, whose jurisdiction includes the university, said he will oppose the plan unless the university protects 1,000 acres for the 99 years. Stanford has threatened to sue the county if the supervisors opt for the 99-year period. 

“We cannot accept that,” said Larry Horton, Stanford’s director of government and community relations. “We don’t believe that we can, with any accuracy at all, predict the future 99 years from now. We think it’s irresponsible to think that we know what our needs and the needs of our society are (in the future).” 

Other supervisors disagree with Simitian’s 99-year plan. Chairman Don Gage has said the board and the university can reach other compromises. Supervisors report receiving letters evenly divided in support of the 99-year protection plan and in support of Stanford. 

“Stanford’s plan will have a tremendous impact on our community. There will be a lot of traffic; there will be noise,” said Peter Drekmeier of the Stanford Open Space Alliance. “There are 17 intersections in the surrounding community that will be heavily impacted. You have degradation of air quality. Many people are worried about storm runoff in San Francisquito Creek.” 

This is the first time Stanford has had to submit a detailed growth plan in its 115 years, and Drekmeier said it is receiving preferential treatment. 

“Permanent preservation is not a new concept,” he said. “The message here is if an applicant complains a lot and threatens a lawsuit, they’ll get their way, and that’s a terrible precedent to set.” 

Drekmeier said the university’s plan could see county officials readjust the protection boundary if Stanford runs out of space set aside under the 10-year plan. If county officials approve it, Stanford could then build on adjacent hillsides before the 25-year protection expires, said Drekmeier – a scenario environmentalists want to prevent. 

But Stanford officials say they are following the same rules everyone else is, noting that local officials review every piece of open space set aside by any developer. 

The expansion would let Stanford house 70 percent of its student body, and would allow the university to build academic buildings, including an eagerly awaited facility that will house researchers studying the intersection of biology and other disciplines like physics and engineering. 


Three of four would-be drivers flunk written test

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

SAN JOSE — Three out of every four would-be California drivers flunked the state’s written driving test on their first attempt after the state overhauled the exam last summer. 

“I don’t think people are stupid,” said Scott Masten, a Department of Motor Vehicles researcher who helped revamp the state’s exams.  

“People just aren’t reading the handbook.” 

The overhaul was, in part, a response to the rise in failure rates over the past 14 years. 

From 1986 to 1999, the proportion of California’s first-timers who flunked the written driving test more than doubled, from 32 percent to 67 percent. 

The test should be a snap, DMV officials say, if test-takers memorize the rules in the California Driver Handbook.  

Last year. 3 million  

people passed. 

But for Donna McCullough, who had studied the handbook for half an hour, the quiz was not so easy. 

Sitting in her car in the parking lot of the Mountain View DMV office recently, McCullough said she had missed 10 items out of 36, five more than what’s allowed. 

“You could study this book for two months and still fail,” said McCullough, who recently moved to California from Georgia.  

“Who has time to study for two months for a stupid driving test? I’m an educated person. I’m a teacher.” 

“It’s not an issue of how smart you are,” said Robert Hagge, a DMV research manager.  

“You don’t have to be a college graduate to do well on it. What you have to do is read the handbook.” 

California’s DMV has a national reputation for taking the written and driving tests seriously, said Charles Butler, director of safety services for the national American Automobile Association.  

However, failure rates are not available from other states because many don’t record the data. 

Over the years, California’s tests, available in 34 languages, have been continually tweaked to reflect changing state laws and new road rules, DMV spokesman Evan Nossoff said. 

Because of the unexplained increase in the failure rate, DMV officials put Masten and his research team to work on a yearlong project to rewrite the tests from scratch. 

“What we wanted to find out is, is this lack of knowledge or poor testing?” said DMV’s Nossoff. 

Pilot tests were distributed at 20 field offices statewide this year.  

The DMV declined to release the tests’ failure rates until the San Jose Mercury News filed a request under the state’s public records act.  

The newspaper reported the results Friday. 

And those results were: 77 percent of test-takers flunked the pilot tests on their first try. And 56 percent of those renewing their licenses, presumably experienced drivers who know road rules, failed. 

DMV officials still hope that as people adjust to the new tests the failure rate will drop.


San Diego facing fine for dumping dirt in open lot

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

SAN DIEGO — The city could be fined up to $25,000 a day unless officials devise a plan to keep runoff from a heap of polluted dirt from getting into a creek and Mission Bay. 

The city has violated California’s water code by dumping 63,000 cubic feet of dirt without notifying the state of plans to accept the dirt near Kearney Mesa Community Park and for not developing a plan to prevent rain runoff from carrying some of the soil down a creek and into the bay, the Regional Water Quality Control Board said. 

City officials were given until Monday to submit a report to the water board. 

“We became concerned because dumping that dirt on about 10 acres is tantamount to a construction site, and there was no evidence of statewide or city of San Diego permits, both of which require measures to prevent storm-water runoff from carrying silt and pollutants off the site,” said Art Coe, assistant executive officer of the water board. 

City officials contend that materials in the dirt won’t harm humans. 

“The soil was found to be nonhazardous, but there are some heavy hydrocarbons, such as old diesel fuel, and they would limit the areas where we could relocate and/or dispose of the soils,” said Ted Medina, deputy director of the city’s coastal parks division. 

The dumping has upset environmentalists. 

“This is typical of the city’s disregard for the Clean Water Act grading and commencing a project without public input, leaving the public out of the equation and just sort of doing what they want to do,” said Donna Frye, founder of the group STOP, or Surfers Tired Of Pollution.


Court upholds gag order on Vallejo kidnapping case

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

A state appeals court has upheld an earlier ruling imposing a gag order on attorneys, police and witnesses in a kidnapping case involving an 8-year-old Vallejo girl. 

The Court of Appeal in San Francisco last week said it would uphold Solano County Superior Court Judge Allan Carter’s ruling to protect the rights of defendant Curtis Dean Anderson.  

That decision was contingent on Carter modifying his order to allow public statements by potential witnesses who have not been subpoenaed. 

Anderson is charged with molesting and kidnapping the girl as she was walking home from school. She escaped two days later from her abductor’s car in Santa Clara after freeing herself from shackles. 

The San Francisco Chronicle, the Sacramento Bee and the Vallejo Times-Herald all challenged the judge’s restrictions, saying they interfered with news coverage. They also argued it was unnecessary to protect the defendant’s rights.  

Anderson’s attorney requested the gag order after police told the media they were investigating Anderson for possible connections to other kidnappings, including the disappearance of a 7-year-old Xiana Fairchild girl last December.


Feds tell Arco to join in at Superfund site

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

MARKLEEVILLE — The federal Environmental Protection Agency has formally told Atlantic Richfield Co. to assist in the cleanup of the Leviathan Mine, recently designated a Superfund environmental site. 

Arco is a former owner of the mine in Alpine County, about 25 miles southwest of Gardnerville, Nev. 

Leviathan has been leaking a mixture of acids and dissolved metals into creeks that drain into the Carson River for years, discoloring the streams and making portions of them incapable of sustaining life. 

The EPA designated the mine a Superfund site in May, putting it on a sordid list of the nation’s most polluted places. 

The designation lets EPA order potential responsible parties to help with the cleanup. Los Angeles-based Arco joins the current owner, California’s Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board on the list. 

The water board has spent millions of dollars over the years to try to contain the toxic stew. 

“The regional board did a great job at performing stopgap work this past summer.  

Now it’s Arco’s turn, Keith Takata, director of the EPA Superfund program in San Francisco told the Reno Gazette-Journal. 

Harold Singer, the Lahontan board’s executive director, said his agency had done the short-term work and the longer-range solutions now are up to Arco. 

“It helps from a financial perspective and their expertise as well. They’re involved in cleanups like this all over the country,” Singer said. 

His agency has built evaporation ponds to catch the runoff and hold the sludge, but they can’t hold everything and millions of gallons of polluted water drains into the creek annually. 

The mine was developed in 1863 and used into the 1870s as a source of copper sulfate. It produced sulfur as recently as the 1950s and was shut down for good in 1963. 


Recreational area closed off in part to protect rare plant

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

BRAWLEY — A portion of a popular off-road vehicle playground was closed for the holiday to protect a rare plant, and prevent accidents. 

About 100,000 people converge on the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area, just east of Brawley in Imperial County, every Thanksgiving weekend. A judge signed an order earlier this month shutting down 40 percent of the recreation area to off-roaders to preserve Peterson’s milk-vetch, a federally protected plant. 

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management will have 60 federal officers patrolling the area to enforce the order.  

Anyone who doesn’t abide by it will be cited, said Doran Sanchez, a BLM spokesman at the bureau’s Riverside headquarters. 

One of the agency’s chief rangers said off-roaders have been unruly in the past, and there are as many as 360 accidents over a long holiday weekend. 

“These little punks come out here, think they can handle their liquor and they cause all sorts of accidents,” said BLM chief ranger Robert Zimmer. 

Last month, a 38-year-old Riverside woman was killed when she was hit by another off-road rider. Authorities said alcohol apparently was not a factor. 

Off-road riders fear the closure will cram visitors into a smaller area and increase the number of accidents.


Teamsters threaten to picket Safeway

Staff
Saturday November 25, 2000

The Associated Press 

 

TRACY — Striking workers at a warehouse stocking Safeway goods plan to step up their action Friday by picketing outside the grocery chain’s stores rather than simply encouraging shoppers to boycott the grocer. 

Many of the 1,600 Teamsters have not formally picketed Safeway because they have no problem with the Pleasanton-based grocery store chain itself.  

They are striking against Summit Logistics, the company that runs the warehouse where they work. 

All sides had said it would be illegal for union members to picket outside Safeway stores.  

But Teamsters Local 439 Vice President Sam Rosas gave the green light for the strike Wednesday, saying Summit and Safeway are linked closely enough to allow workers to picket outside stores. 

Rosas said the decision came after meetings with legal counsel and members of the Teamsters international organization. 

“They’ve tried that argument before,” said Martin Street, president of Summit Logistics. 

Safeway officials said the union has no right to picket, and the grocer may ask the courts to block the picket. 

“Safeway views this as a rather desperate ploy here to revive what really is a failed strike against Summit and a failed boycott against Safeway,” said David Faustmas, senior vice president of Safeway’s labor relations. 

Picketing could not only deter more shoppers from buying from Safeway, but it also could keep unionized suppliers from delivering goods and unionized store employees from going to work. 

However, the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1179 has not sanctioned the strike. Union members were informed Wednesday not to honor the picket line, said Phil Tucker, union press secretary. 

Summit’s 400 drivers and 1,200 warehouse workers went on strike Oct. 18, alleging unsafe working conditions, unrealistic productivity standards and a problematic pay system governing drivers.


NASA craft survives solar flare hit

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

PASADENA — A NASA spacecraft on a seven-year mission to collect comet dust survived a blinding zap from an enormous solar flare this month. 

For a while, the Stardust spacecraft had too many stars in its eyes after it was hit Nov. 9 by a storm of high-energy particles that was 100,000 times more intense than usual, according to Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which manages the mission. 

Protons from the solar wind electrified pixels in Stardust’s star cameras, which it uses to control its orientation, and produced dots that the spacecraft interpreted as stars. 

The spacecraft processor normally compares the 12 brightest images in its field of view with patterns in its star catalog, but with hundreds of false star-like images the spacecraft could not recognize its attitude in space. 

Stardust automatically put itself in standby mode with its solar panels pointed toward the sun to ensure plenty of power and waited for communication from Earth.  

In the meantime it tried switching to a second star camera but got the same result. 

Flight controllers, who had been concerned about the solar flare’s effect, were unable to communicate with Stardust the next morning and suspected it was in standby mode, which meant it would send a signal to Earth within 24 hours. 

Scientists left the spacecraft in standby mode to allow the proton stream to diminish, and on Nov. 11 sent commands to reset the first star camera and turn it back on. 

The last images taken before the spacecraft went into standby mode were retrieved, revealing hundreds of false images. 

The spacecraft was put back in normal operation several days later. Images taken after the flare subsided showed the camera fully recovered from the proton hits. 

Stardust was 130 million miles from the sun when it was hit by the fourth largest solar flare since 1976, NASA said. 

Built by Lockheed Martin Astronautics, was launched Feb. 7, 1999, on a mission to intercept the comet Wild 2 in 2004, collect dust flying off its nucleus and return to Earth in 2006 to drop off the samples in a parachute-equipped capsule. 

On the Net: 

Stardust mission: http://stardust.jpl.nasa.gov


L.A. school project still unresolved

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

LOS ANGELES — Ten months after the Los Angeles Board of Education voted to abandon the Belmont Learning Complex because of environmental contamination concerns, the future of the nearly completed high school remains unresolved. 

Now supporters of the school, badly needed to serve the city’s most crowded neighborhood, plan to step up pressure on the board to perhaps complete the $200-million project. 

Next week, members of the citizens committee that oversees the district’s $2.4-billion school construction bond are expected to threaten to withhold funds from other school projects if the board does not reconsider its Belmont decision. 

The strategy is being closely watched by a broadening coalition of politicians, activists and lawyers who have concluded that the board should re-evaluate its position. 

But a majority of the seven board members say they will not budge from their conclusion that environmental contamination on the site just west of downtown makes it unsuitable for a school. 

Whether the committee could prevail in a showdown with the board isn’t clear. 

A judge has ruled that the board cannot act on bond funding issues without a review by the committee, created by voters when they approved the Proposition BB school bond in 1997, but once the committee has made its recommendation the board is free to ignore it.  

In the past, however, the board has almost always followed the committee’s recommendations. 

Conflict over Belmont is hardly new. The project’s unraveling last year over inadequate investigation of its environmental problems led to lawsuits and contributed to three incumbents losing in a school board election and to the ouster of then-Superintendent Ruben Zacarias. 

Meanwhile, the 4,500 students the school was meant to serve are still crammed into the original and much smaller Belmont two blocks away or riding buses to other parts of town. 

The bond oversight committee, which will meet Wednesday, has asked the board to complete studies to answer three key questions: Can Belmont be made safe, how much would that cost and how long would it take? 

Robert Garcia, chairman of the Proposition BB committee, said members need answers to those questions because they are being asked to fund new schools that would replace the Belmont complex.  

The district has proposed five sites that would serve Belmont students. 

Some on the committee favor a complete suspension of the district’s massive school building program until the board reviews Belmont, Garcia said.  

Others support denying funds just to the five proposed projects that would draw from the Belmont attendance area. 

New Superintendent Roy Romer has said he too hopes Belmont can be opened as a school, but he criticized the committee’s proposal, saying it would hold schools hostage. 

However, he concedes he’s grasping for a solution to a problem that can seem intractable. 

“I am trying to figure out how to put together a proposal which can get four votes (on the board),” he told the Los Angeles Times. 

“To date I don’t have the right package.”


Computer mistake may have mislead L.A. jurors

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

LOS ANGELES — A computer mistake on key evidence used to convict three Rampart officers of framing gang members may have misled jurors, defense attorneys claimed, and a judge said it was an important issue. 

The controversy centers on a police report that mistakenly exaggerated the injuries of officers and may have led to the Nov. 15 convictions. 

The report should have said the officers were victims of assault with a deadly weapon by means “likely” to produce great bodily injury.  

Instead, a software program incorrectly printed, “ADW w/GBI,” giving the impression the officers were claiming serious injury. 

The officers never claimed they were seriously injured but some jurors said they relied on the computer-generated report to convict Sgt. Edward Ortiz, 44, Sgt. Brian Liddy, 39, and Officer Michael Buchanan, 30, of conspiracy and perjury for fabricating charges against the gang members. 

“I am troubled,” Superior Court Judge Jacqueline A. Connor said Wednesday when the issue was raised during a hearing about possible juror misconduct. “This is not a small issue.” 

The convictions were the first in the city’s police corruption probe at the Rampart station. A fourth officer was acquitted by the panel. 

Buchanan and Liddy alleged in the police report that gang members hit them with a pickup truck in an alley during a July 1996 gang sweep.  

Defense attorneys told the court Wednesday that three jurors have said they couldn’t agree on whether the officers were actually hit by gang members. 

It was a literal interpretation of a line in the report, which said the officers were victims of assault with a deadly weapon with great bodily harm, that led jurors to conclude the officers were lying, the lawyers claimed. 

“They were deciding a false issue. These officers were convicted on what a computer spit out,” defense attorney Harland Braun said. 

No one caught the mistake during the monthlong trial. 

Connor, who ordered a Dec. 15 hearing, asked defense attorneys to get an affidavit from at least one juror confirming that the computer mistake led them off track during deliberations. 

Deputy District Attorney Laura Laesecke argued unsuccessfully that the defense claim was based on hearsay and a hearing wasn’t needed. 

“We should not be putting the jury on trial,” the prosecutor said. 

Police testimony during the trial indicated the claimed injuries were minor. 

Ortiz, the sergeant in charge, said he saw that Buchanan’s knees were bloody and his pants torn, but the officer asked to continue working.  

Ortiz also said he talked to Liddy, who also wanted to continue working. Both officers were later examined at a hospital.


Bittersweet holiday for Los Alamos fire victims

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. — Ask 9-year-old Thomas Hemsing what he’s thankful for this holiday season, and he doesn’t hesitate: 

“That we have a home for us to live in, just for now,” said the fourth-grader. “For all the cool things I’ve gotten for free, all the donations.” 

The holidays have been bittersweet in Los Alamos, where 400 families were uprooted by raging fire in the spring. Snow has made the scorched hills look even bleaker. 

Rita and Billy Hemsing often take son Thomas and 12-year-old daughter Renee to the spot where their house of 23 years turned to blackened rubble. As they make do in a rented home, they dream of the future. 

“I’m glad we’re rebuilding,” Thomas said. 

He thinks it will be “kind of neat” to have two bathrooms – the old house had one – and he likes the idea of bigger windows planned for the front. 

Renee puts a higher premium on an intangible feature of the new home: “The same security we had at the old place, because we’re all there.” 

Making do has not just meant deferring dreams of new closet space for Thomas and Renee but also enduring a 35-minute bus ride to Mountain Elementary School, about twice as long as before. 

The school district allowed displaced children to stay at their old school, rather than making them transfer near temporary homes. So, buses weave through neighborhoods, picking up kids scattered like ashes by the fire. 

“This was really all they had left,” said Rosine McGhee, a counselor at Mountain Elementary School, where more than 70 students lost homes. 

Renee and Thomas keep up straight As. Like their classmates, they work at restoring a routine and being optimistic, the counselor said. But overall the kids have more trouble concentrating and are more easily frustrated. Some still can’t sleep soundly. 

“I think, in general, people are just more on edge,” McGhee said. 

The fire may have died but it lingers in indelible memories, “always talked about” among students, according to Renee. 

“Some kids are doing science fair projects on it. And we’re studying the rebirth of plants after fire,” said Renee, whose family has been staying across town from the edge of the forest where they once lived. 

At the new Hemsing home, seasonal changes bring fresh, new reminders of what was lost. 

The roasting pan for Thanksgiving turkey. File boxes full of recipes, including one for Christmas bread. Wrapping paper, bows and gift tags. Red felt Christmas stockings, embroidered with the children’s names. 

But the kindness of strangers has acted as a salve. 

A local church gave away free Nativity scenes and Christmas ornaments. A card store donated recipes, decorations and other holiday items.  

Someone made dozens of quilted Christmas stockings for the schoolchildren. 

Meanwhile, Rita grapples with the loss. She has “virtual reality” dreams in which she glides through each room of the old house, noticing every detail.  

She is saddened every time she looks up at the mountains, with their “black skeletons” of trees. She has been ill more frequently than usual. 

She catches herself becoming embittered and thinks better of it. 

“We have what we need,” she said. “And the kids are fine.” 

On the Net: 

Los Alamos County: http://www.lac.losalamos.nm.us 

Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce: http://www.losalamos.com/chamber


Nations scored, ranked on their manners, hospitality

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

COLUMBIA, S.C. — They say hospitality is the Southern way, and once again Charleston tops the nation’s most mannerly cities list released Friday by etiquette expert Marjabelle Young Stewart. 

“Charleston is the role model for the rest of the country,” said Stewart from her home in Kewanee, Ill. “One woman said, ‘I make sure I visit there once a year to see a gentleman in action. All I have to say to my husband is, ‘Oh, I miss Charleston,’ and he’ll put down his paper down.” 

Charleston, which has a reputation of hospitality, kindness and politeness, has been on the list all 24 years and has topped it seven times, including last year. 

Stewart, author of “Common Sense Etiquette,” bases her list on thousands of letters and faxes, many of which come from executives and others who have taken her etiquette courses in the United States and abroad. 

The Quad Cities area of Iowa and Illinois was second. Milwaukee was third, and though it is more known for being gaudy and raucous, Las Vegas was fourth. Stewart said visitors told her they noticed the hospitality hotels in that city showed toward their children. 

“More families said they were making an effort to welcome them and show great respect to their children,” she said.  

“It’s a good happy, place to be welcomed.” 

Savannah, Ga., last year’s runner-up, was seventh this year. 

John Graham Altman, a Republican who represents Charleston in the South Carolina House, said he wasn’t surprise the city was atop the list again. 

“It’s a whole Southern custom to be polite to folks, even though you disagree with them. It doesn’t cost anything to say please, excuse me and thank you,” he said. “There are so many bad manners in the world. If we can be an oasis of decent manners, so be it.” 

Stewart said five people told her they wanted to move to the Quad Cities of Davenport and Bettendorf, Iowa, and Moline and Rock Island, Ill. 

The cities have “instructed taxi drivers how to greet guests and make guests feel welcomed,” Stewart said, noting that those who wrote her “loved to do business there.” 

Seattle ranked sixth, though a few visitors said people there had bad cellular telephone manners. 

“People looked like aliens,” Stewart said, quoting one writer. “They have terrible timing. They took over my space, even while walking.” 

But Stewart said all cities on the list should show pride for their efforts. 

“Tell each of these cities, to take a bow. No, tell their mothers to take a bow,” quoting Stewart from one letter-writer. “They raised some really nice people.”


Homeless shelter asks gay congressman not volunteer to serve meal

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

TUCSON, Ariz. — Rep. Jim Kolbe was asked not to volunteer at a Tucson homeless shelter’s Thanksgiving dinner because he’s a homosexual. 

“This decision is based on your publicly announced sexual orientation that is diametrically opposite to admonitions in the Bible,” Gospel Rescue Mission board member Evelyn H. Haugh wrote in a faxed memo.  

“This mission is founded on biblical principles, and we cannot give a public forum to a public official who is blatantly flaunting those principles.” 

Kolbe, the only openly homosexual Republican congressman, downplayed the snub but said biblical teaching “tells us that no people should be made to feel smaller than others.” 

“It would undermine the very essence of Thanksgiving if the good works of the Gospel Rescue Mission and others were eclipsed in controversy,” Kolbe said. “The mission has provided noble service to (the) community and I wish it only the best in its efforts to feed and clothe the downtrodden.” 

Kolbe, a seven-term congressman who acknowledged his sexual orientation in 1996, helped serve meals at the shelter’s Thanksgiving dinner last year. 

Skip Woodward, board vice president, said Kolbe had been allowed to serve because “he just showed up and took us by surprise.” 

“Kolbe’s very public stand on homosexuality is inconsistent with our beliefs,” Woodward said. “We wouldn’t want anyone who advocated adultery to serve either.” 

Arizona Gov. Jane Hull expressed disappointment at the mission’s revoked invitation to Kolbe, saying “hunger sees no sexual preference.”


Chromium 6 shown to be dangerous when inhaled

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

The following Associated Press Article was originally published in late October. 

 

LOS ANGELES – A panel of scientists urged state officials to toughen standards for chromium 6 in water, stating there is compelling evidence that it causes cancer. 

In testimony Oct. 24 during a joint hearing of state regulatory agencies, toxicology professor John Froines of the UCLA School of Public Health said studies have shown chromium 6 to be a carcinogen when inhaled through air, which makes it a likely carcinogen when ingested through water. 

The state should quickly take action to purge water supplies of the chemical, even though scientists and regulators are still debating its risk, said Froines, chairman of the advisory board for the state Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. 

“You can take the political, legal and economic argument (against the tougher standard), and it will go on for 10 years,” Froines said. 

“We should assume the correctness of the state’s public health goal for chromium 6 and begin from there.” 

Froines was among nearly two dozen experts, regulators and citizens who testified before the joint hearing of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, the Senate Natural Resources and Wildlife Committee and the Assembly Committee on Environmental Safe and Toxic Materials. 

The hearing, which was attended by about 200 people, was called by state Senators Adam Schiff, D-Burbank, and Tom Hayden, D-Los Angeles. 

Schiff called on the state Department of Health Services to issue an “action level” directive, which would not have the force of law, but would urge local water agencies to meet a chromium standard as quickly as possible. A scientist with the state’s health hazard office two years ago recommended reducing the standard for chromium from 50 to 2.5 parts per billion. 

Officials with the state Department of Health Services say it could take five more years to implement a new standard, which prompted the Oct. 24 hearing. The agency has urged public water systems to test for chromium 6 and was drafting emergency regulations to require testing by the end of the year, said David Spath, the department’s drinking water chief. 

It was unlikely that the department would issue an emergency regulation, because chromium 6 is not an immediate public health threat, Spath said. 

“This is not a case of acute toxicity,” he told the joint committee. Chromium 6 has been suspected of causing cancer in several high-profile lawsuits. In a 1996 case made famous by the Julia Roberts film “Erin Brockovich,” residents of the San Bernardino town of Hinkley won a $333 million settlement from Pacific Gas & Electric because the company’s underground tanks leaked chromium 6 into ground water. 

Gov. Gray Davis signed legislation earlier this month that gives the state Department of Health Services until January 2002 to determine the threat of chromium 6 throughout the state and to issue a report to the governor and Legislature. 

 

 


Woolley’s plans are happy ones

By Judith Scherr Daily Planet Staff
Friday November 24, 2000

 

It was time. 

Councilmember Diane Woolley said formal good-byes to her council colleagues at Tuesday night’s meeting.  

Leaving is a relief, she said Wednesday. “Six years is enough. I’m smiling.” 

The six-year District 5 councilmember opted not to run for re-election Nov. 7. AC Transit Director Miriam Hawley was elected in her place. 

Fresh from a trip to the East Coast, Woolley said she looks forward to a new life with a broader perspective. 

“My focus was getting so narrow,” she said. “Whether or not we get the (living wall), it’s not the biggest thing in the world.” The councilmember was referring to the unique sound wall the city has worked on for years, hoping to have the state transportation agency install it between the freeway and Aquatic Park. 

Woolley’s had tough battles to fight and, unlike her council colleagues who generally line up with either progressives or moderates, she’s been a maverick on the council. Elected with the blessing of moderate Mayor Shirley Dean, Woolley has generally sided with moderates on fiscal matters and voted with progressives on social issues. 

“I get a lot of pressure from both sides,” she said. 

At Tuesday evening’s meeting, the mayor got her last dig in and at the same time praised her colleague. “You have always stood up for what you believed in and sometimes you were a real pain in the neck, but no one worked with more passion on issues related to the waterfront,” she said. 

Woolley won’t miss the battles. “In the big things you need five (votes),” she said. She will, however, miss the help she’s been able to get for individuals in her district, especially when they’ve had problems with the city’s aged sewer lines. 

Woolley has been a constant voice speaking out for upgrading the sewers. “If I say I come from a city where every winter sewage runs into the creeks and the Bay, where would you say I’m from?” Woolley asks, rhetorically. 

She points to specific issues where she mustered five votes and made an impact. She helped stop the salt water pipeline, proposed for fighting fires. “I saved the city $30 million,” Woolley said.  

And “the sea scouts were a big thing.” Woolley helped get the scouts removed from their free berth at the Marina. Their affiliation with the Boy Scouts and the scouts’ anti-gay stance was the reason behind their ejection. 

“I fought off a (new) hotel at the Marina,” Woolley said, warning that she believes a similar proposal will come back to council again. 

But now, Woolley says it’s time for her to step back. She’s not making large plans for the future. “I plan to enjoy Thanksgiving and Christmas vacation. “We’ll see what comes next.” 

 

 


Grading out a disappointing Cal season

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Friday November 24, 2000

By Jared Green 

Daily Planet Staff 

 

Quarterback: Sophomore Kyle Boller took nearly every snap this season, and he showed some progress, moving around the pocket more comfortably and throwing the ball away to avoid sacks. But he once again completed less than half of his passes, and he regressed in the season-ending Big Game, throwing four interceptions, three of which he threw up for grabs into double coverage.  

The struggles in the passing game don’t all rest on Boller’s shoulders, however, as his receivers dropped an awful lot of passes, and freshman Geoff McArthur in particular seemed to break off routes early.  

Grade: C 

 

Running backs: The triple threat of tailbacks Joe Igber, Joe Echema and Saleem Muhammed combined to provide a solid running game for most of the season. Igber is a constant threat to break a huge run, as his jitterbug moves can shake defenders anywhere on the field. His 181 yards against ASU was a season-high for the Bears, and he also put in solid efforts against Washington, USC and Oregon State. Echema provided a good change-up for Igber early in the season, and Muhammed finished strong against Oregon and Stanford. All three should return next year, so the battle for playing time should be fierce. 

Fullback Ryan Stanger ran the ball sparingly, but is a solid blocker and will also return. Senior H-back Keala Keanaaina was a surprising threat in the passing game, catching 15 balls, mostly off of play-action fakes, and will be missed, but the return of Marcus Fields from injury should offset the loss. 

Grade: B 

 

Wide receiver: The combination of inexperience (freshmen McArthur and Chase Lyman) and juco transfers (Charon Arnold, Derek Swafford and Chad Heydorff) never really came together to give Boller consistent targets. Swafford led the team with 25 receptions and three touchdowns despite playing only the last six games, and McArthur and Lyman showed potential with 20 and 19 catches, respectively. Arnold played well before missing the final seven games with an injury, and Heydorff never fully recovered from a training camp injury and never made an impact.  

But every one of those players dropped a few balls during the year, and Boller never looked truly comfortable with any of them.  

Grade: D 

Offensive line: This unit was supposed to be a team strength, but injuries caused so much shuffling that the line never got set. As a result, the running game never saw consistent holes, and Boller felt a lot of pressure from pass rushers. Lone senior and unit leader Reed Diehl started at three different positions (center, left guard, left tackle) and was a true warrior, playing through numerous injuries.  

The only player to start every game was right tackle Mark Wilson. Left guard Brandon Ludwig missed three games, right guard Scott Tercero two, and huge left tackle Langston Walker missed the final seven games. Reserves Robert Truhitte, Chris Chick, Marvin Philip and Nolan Bluntzer all played adequately, and the experience they gained gives the line a lot of depth for next year. 

Grade: C 

 

Defensive line: Clearly the best unit on the team, the defensive line held up in just about every game. Probable top-10 NFL pick Andre Carter tallied 13 sacks and was a force in every game, drawing double-teams and opposing offenses’ focus. Fellow senior Jacob Waasdorp did his damage from the inside, bullying running backs and creating havoc in his reckless style. Although tackle Daniel Nwangwu was a disappointment, failing to step up as expected, redshirt freshman Josh Beckham stepped into the starting lineup and made some big plays. The battle between sophomore Tully Banta-Cain and senior Shaun Paga for the other end spot went back and forth all year, with Paga making an impact early and Banta-Cain coming on strong at the end, including a dominating Big Game, and finishing with 5.5 sacks and 13 tackles for loss. 

Grade: A 

 

Linebacker: Scott Fujita was the only full-time starter in the linebacking corps, and he had a solid year playing behind stalwart Carter. Undersized inside guy Matt Nixon made big plays, but was pushed by John Klotsche and Chris Ball. Klotsche is a good run-stuffer, while Ball lives to blitz the quarterback. Senior Jason Smith made some plays in his part-time role, as did J.P. Segura, and Calvin Hosey was never healthy enough to have an impact. With all but Smith coming back, this group should be better next year. 

Grade: C 

 

Defensive backs: This is a hard group to evaluate. This group made very few big plays, and gave up a lot of big ones. But individually, they didn’t play too badly. Cornerbacks Chidi Iwuoma, Jemeel Powell and Leshaun Ward provided solid coverage the majority of the time, although their tackling was a bit suspect. Powell in particular looked like a future star, and Ward has a ability if he can tame his emotions.  

Safety Nnamdi Asomugha had several big games and provided solid run support, but needs work in coverage. The weak link was safety Dewey Hale, who missed tackles and didn’t do much in coverage. Senior cornerback Harold Pearson lost his starting job early and never got it back. 

Grade: C 

Special teams: Spoiled by the big plays of Deltha O’Neal in 1999, the Bear special teams didn’t produce much in the way of returns in 2000. No touchdowns from kick returns and just one punt returned for a score (although that score by Jemeel Powell helped beat USC).  

But the real failure was in the punting game. Nick Harris was once again spectacular when he got good snaps and had time to get his punts off. But blocked punts led directly to losses to Washington State, Washington and Stanford. That’s the difference between 3-8 and going to a bowl game with a winning record. 

Grade: F 

 

Coaching: Watching a Cal game was like watching two different teams play the same opponent. The defense always came out fired up, looking to make plays and be aggressive. Defensive coordinator Lyle Sentencich and the position coaches must be commended for keeping their unit in games even when the offense was giving them no help. But the offense was tentative and disorganized. Receivers ran the wrong route, the offensive line had trouble opening holes, and Boller looked unsure of himself about half the time. No consistent strategy emerged: were they a passing team or a running team? Did they want to spread the field with four or five receivers, or use a traditional set? There’s something to be said for variety, but when you can’t do the basics well, why try so many complex things? The firing of offensive coordinator Steve Hagen this week was a step in the right direction. Holmoe needs to bring in someone with a proven track record who will give the offense an identity. Someone who could get Boller and his receivers on the same page would also be ideal. 

Grade: Offense – D Defense – B


Calendar of Events & Activities

Compiled by Chason Wainwright
Friday November 24, 2000


Friday, Nov. 24

 

“Yoga Poems”  

7:30 p.m. 

Piedmont Yoga Studio 

4125 Piedmont Ave. 

Piedmont 

Leza Lowitz will read from her new book, which contains over 60 poems inspired by different yoga poses, and do a yoga performance. Free. 

Call Miki, 558-7826 

 


Saturday, Nov. 25

 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612 

 

Create the City of Your  

Fantasies 

7:30 - 11 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. This evening features DJ’d “Candlelight Massage Circles Salon.”  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

Children’s Benefit Concert 

11 a.m. - noon 

College Ave. Presbyterian Church  

5951 College Ave.  

Oakland  

A concert to benefit Lillian Wamalwa, who would like to go to Kenya to help her sister, who has AIDS, and her four children.  

$6 suggested donation 

Call 925-376-3543 

 

Papersong Grand Opening Celebration 

Noon - 5 p.m.  

Swan’s Marketplace 

936B Clay St.  

Oakland 

Featuring free musical performances by Big Brother & The Holding Co., Caravan of All Stars Revue, The Charles Dudley Band, and Jane DeCuir. 436-5131 

 

Making Marriage Work 

(event is 10 Wednesdays, Nov. 29 - Jan. 24) 

7:30 - 9:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family  

& Children’s Services 

of the East Bay, Berkeley 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

For Jewish and interfaith couples either considering marriages, engaged or recently married. Focusing on topics to improve the relationship and bridging religious and ethnic differences. 

$360 per couple 704-7475 

Sunday, Nov. 26 

The Value of Meditation 

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 

Joleen Vries, director of the Nyingma Institute in the Netherlands for over five years, will discuss how to maintain a regular meditation practice. Free 843-6812 

Monday, Nov. 27 

To Make the World Whole 

7:30 - 9 p.m.  

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Bay Area musician Mark Levy discusses songs of peace, protest and change from labor, feminists, peace, and environmental activists of the past 125 years, that inspired others to action. 

Tuition for all three classes: $30 general public; $20 JJC members, seniors and students 

Individual classes: $10 general; $8 JJC members, seniors and students  

Call 848-0237 

 

Parks & Recreation Board 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Solid Waste Management  

Commission 

7 p.m. 

Solid Waste Management Center 

1201 Second St.  

 

Zoning Adjustment Board  

Meeting 

7 p.m. 

2134 MLK Jr. Way  

Council Chambers, 2nd Floor 

 

Educational Philosophies  

Roundtable 

7 - 9 p.m.  

Epworth United Methodist Church 

1953 Hopkins St.  

At this roundtable, Sponsored by the Neighborhood Parents Network, parents will learn about the following educational philosophies: Developmental, cooperative, Montessori, bilingual, Waldorf, religious, homeschooling, and charter schools.  

Free to members; non-members, $5 527-6667 or visit www.parentsnet.org  

Tuesday, Nov. 28  

Blood Pressure for Seniors 

9:30 - 11 a.m.  

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

44-6107 

 

Read a Play Together Salon 

7:30 - 10:30 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. $3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

Lavender Lunch 

12:30 - 1:30 p.m. 

Pacific School of Religion  

1798 Scenic Ave. Mudd 100 

PSR adjunct faculty member Mark Wilson and PSR alumna Lynice Pinkard will speak on “Heterosexism and Racism.” Free 849-8206 

—compiled by  

Chason Wainwright 

 

Making Marriage Work 

(event is 10 Wednesdays, Nov. 29 - Jan. 24) 

7:30 - 9:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay, Berkeley 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

For Jewish and interfaith couples either considering marriages, engaged or recently married. Focusing on topics to improve the relationship and bridging religious and ethnic differences to strengthen the marriage.  

$360 per couple  

Call 704-7475 

 


Wednesday, Nov. 29

 

Wanderlust: Tales of  

Adventure and Romance 

7:30 p.m.  

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave. (at Rose) 

Jeff Greenwald and other travel writers discuss the art of writing travel literature and how to make a living doing it.  

Call 843-3533 

 

Berkeley Gray Panthers  

Membership Meeting 

1:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Discussion of how the election results will affect the Gray Panthers.  

Call 548-9696 

 

Mental Health Commission 

6:30 p.m. 

2640 MLK Jr. Way (at Derby) 

 

Challenges of Parenting Adolescents  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services 

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

This workshop focuses on the challenges facing parents and teens. Learn how to avoid triggering and pushing each other’s buttons. Runs three consecutive Wednesdays, through Dec. 13. Led by Kathy Langsam, MA, MFT, JFCS Teen Services Coordinator.  

$60 

Call 704-7475 

 


Thursday, Nov. 30

 

Pro Arts Juried Show  

Reception 

6 - 8 p.m.  

Pro Arts 

461 Ninth St.  

Oakland 

With the work of 70 artists, this annual show features the work of emerging and mid-career artists. The show runs through December 30. See A&E calendar for details.  

 

Snowshoeing Basics  

7 p.m . 

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Professional snowshoe guide Cathy Anderson-Meyers gives basic instruction on how to get out and experience Tahoe’s winter terrain on “shoes.”  

Call 527-4140 

 

Art for Sale 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Kala Art Institute  

1060 Heinz Ave.  

Over sixty artists affiliated with the Kala Art Institute exhibit works ranging from traditional wood block prints to works in digital media. During the reception, artists will offer 10 percent off the sale of their prints.  

549-2977 

 

Oakland Museum Trip for Seniors 

(trip on Dec. 8) 

A trip to the Oakland Museum to see the Imperial Palace of China Exhibit. Organized by the North Berkeley Senior Center 

Call Maggie, 644-6107 

 

Let Your Chi Flow Freely 

6 - 7 p.m.  

University of Creation Spirituality 

2141 Broadway Ave. 

Oakland 

Share peace and tranquillity communally and regain harmony and balance.  

Call Idris Hassan, 835-4827 x31  

 

Witness In Our Time 

7 p.m.  

105 North Gate Hall 

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism 

Center for Photography 

Kerry Tremain moderates a conversation with Wayne Miller, Ken Light, Matt Heron and Michelle Vignes. Followed by a book signing for “Chicago’s South Side” by Wayne Miller and “Witness in Our Time” by Ken Light. 

Call 642-3383  

 

Friday, Dec. 1 

Spanish Book Club 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody’s Books  

2454 Telegraph Ave.  

A discussion of “Dona Barbara” by the Colombian writer Rumulo Gallegos. New members welcome. The group meets the first Friday of each month.  

Call 601-0454  

 

Taize Worship Services  

7:30 - 8:30 p.m.  

Loper Chapel  

Dana St. (between Durant & Channing) 

Call 848-3696 

 

Basic Electrical Theory 

7 - 10 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Redwood Kardon, retired City of Oakland building inspector and author of the Code Check book series.  

$35 

Call 525-7610 

 

Saturday, Dec. 2  

Wild About Books? 

10:30 a.m. 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

Storyteller Kellmar draws from her African-American roots with stories that touch the heart and the funnybone. For childen aged 3-7. 

Call 649-3943  

 

Whymsium Anniversary Party 

7:30 - 11 p.m. 

Whimsyum  

1414 Fourth St.  

Described as something beyond dinner and a movie, the folks at Whymsium invite you to share your interests and explore your hobbies. This annual party features a talent show, games and a dance.  

$3 - $20 sliding scale 

Call 595-5541  

 

UC Botanical Holiday Plant Sale 

10 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden  

200 Centennial Dr.  

You’ll find a selection of orchids, ferns, rhododendrons, cacti, hardy herbs, and house plants galore for yourself or gardening friends.  

Call 643-2755 

 

Native American Flute  

5 - 6 p.m. 

Gathering Tribes Gallery  

1573 Solano Ave.  

Celebrating the release of his CD “Spirit Within,” Berkeley resident and flutist Walter Ogi Johnson performs.  

 

Finding a Way In 

7 - 9 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Offering a safe space for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender jews to express personal concerns and to find a place to belong in the Jewish community.  

$5 with pre-registraiton; $7 at door  

845-6420 

 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Know Your Rights Training 

11 a.m. - 2 p.m. 

Copwatch Office  

2022 Blake St.  

Learn what your rights are in dealing with the police. Learn how to monitor the police safely.  

Call 548-0425 

 

Publish Your Own Book 

10 a.m. - 1 p.m. 

Regent Press 

6020-A Adeline St. 

Mark Weiman of Regen Press presents an overview of the business of book publishing oriented towards the author considering self-publishing.  

$60 per person 

Call Mark Weiman, 547-7602 

 

Friends of Berkeley Youth Alternatives 

Wine Tasting  

1 - 4 p.m. 

Rosenblum Cellars 

2900 Main St.  

Alameda 

All proceeds benefit the children and families served by Berkeley Youth Alternatives. 

$25 

Call 845-9010 

 

Alternative Building Materials 

10 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Seminar taught by architects Dan Smith and John Fordice. 

$75  

Call 525-7610 

 

Sunday Dec. 3 

Connecting with Nature 

1 - 3 p.m.  

Rotary Nature Center  

600 Bellevue Ave. (at Perkins) 

Oakland 

Children aged six to twelve, accompanied by a parent, are invited to explore nature with all their senses. Cathy Holt, author of “The Circle of Healing” will lead the event. Free 

Call Stephanie for reservations, 238-3739 

 

Transcending Limits on Knowledge  

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place 

Lee Nichol on Tarthang Tulku’s “Time, Space, and Knowledge.” Free 

843-6812 

 

Richmond Holiday Arts Festival 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

Richmond Art Center 

2540 Barret Ave.  

Richmond 

A silent auction, craft sale, gifts and services auction, and hands-on art projects. Proceeds benefit the Richmond Art Center. Free  

620-6772 

 

Kitka’s “Wintersongs Holiday Tour” 

7 p.m. 

Lake Merritt United Methodist Church 

1330 Lakeshore Ave. 

Oakland 

In it’s first annual winter holiday concert, this women’s vocal ensemble will perform Eastern European seasonal songs.  

$15 - $20 

444-0323 

 

Winterfest 

Noon - 4 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

A celebration of winter family traditions like music, dance, craft activities, and food. Included in museum admission. 

$6 general, $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Joe Raskin & David Slusser’s  

Improv Derby 

7:48 p.m. 

Tuva Space 

3192 Adeline (at MLK Jr. Way) 

Joe Raskin/George Cremaschi Duo & David Slusser’s Improv Derby. Part of ACME Observatory Contemporary Music Series.  

$8 suggested donation 

Call 444-3595 

 

Monday, Dec. 4 

Personnel Board Meeting 

7 p.m.  

Permit Center 

2118 Milvia St.  

First Floor Conference Room 

 

Youth Commission 

6 p.m. 

Martin Luther King, Jr. Youth Center 

1730 Oregon St. 

 

Landmarks Preservation Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

North Berkely Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Peace and Justice Commission 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Keeping Parents Sane 

6:30 - 8:30 p.m. 

Jewish Family & Children’s Services  

of the East Bay 

2484 Shattuck Ave., Suite 210 

If your child(ren) are defiant and oppositional and you don’t know what to do, try this workshop led by Liz Marton, MFT.  

$20 

Call 704-7475 

 

Criminalization of Youth 

7:30 p.m. 

King Middle School  

1781 Rose St.  

Angela Davis, educator, activist, and former political prisoner speaks at this benefit lecture for the Niebyl-Proctor Marxist Library.  

$5 

Call 595-7417  

 

Make a Wreath 

7 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

Furniture Making for Women 

9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 

Building Education Center 

812 Page St.  

Finish carpenter Tracy Weir teaches this hands-on, four day workshop, culminating with each attendee building her own cabinet unit with drawer and shelf. Runs through Dec. 8.  

$475  

Call 525-7610 

 

Tuesday, Dec. 5 

Design the Perfect School  

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Ave. (at Rose) 

Informally led by Robert Berend, former UC Extension lecturer, this group aims to have intelligent discussions on a wide range of topics. They stress that there is no religious bent to the discussions and that all viewpoints are welcome. Bring light snacks to share with group.  

Call Robert Berend, 527-5332  

 

Jewish Book Club 

7:30 - 9:15 p.m.  

Jewish Learning Center  

1414 Walnut St.  

Join in a discussion of Brian Norton’s “Starting Out in the Evening.” Free 

848-0237 x 127 

 

Get the Lead Out 

6 - 8 p.m. 

Frances Albrier Center 

San Pablo Park  

2800 Park St.  

Learn how to prevent lead poisoning in your home. Taught by expert staff, this course offers techniques property owners can use to safety paint and remodel their homes.  

Call 567-8280 

 

Make a Wreath 

7 p.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

City Council 

7 p.m. 

Old City Hall  

2134 MLK Jr. Way 

 

Wednesday, Dec. 6  

Task Force on Telecommunications 

7 p.m. 

1900 Addison  

Third Floor Conference Room 

 

Citizens Budget Review Commission 

7 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way)  

 

Board of Education 

7:30 p.m. 

2134 MLK Jr. Way  

Council Chambers 

 

Fire Safety Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

Fire Department Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St.  

 

Thursday, Dec. 7 

Berkeley Metaphysic Toastmasters Club 

6:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. 

2515 Hillegass Ave.  

Public speaking skills and metaphysic come together at Avatar Metaphysical Toastmasters. Meets first and third Thursdays each month. 

Call 869-2547 or 643-7645 

 

Women’s Travel Book Club 

6:30 p.m. 

Cody’s Books 

1730 Fourth St.  

Join a discussion of M.F.K. Fisher’s “Two Towns in Provence: Map of Another Town & A Considerable Town.” New members are always welcome. The group meets the first Thursday of each month.  

Call 482-8971 

 

Make a Wreath 

10 a.m. 

UC Botanical Garden 

200 Centennial Dr.  

Whether you are a beginner or a veteran wreath-maker, join Nancy Swearengen and Jerry Parsons and learn to use some unusual materials.  

$27.50, including materials 

Call 643-2755 

 

Prepare Meals in a Snow Kitchen  

7 p.m.  

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Chuck Collingwood of the Sierra Club will present a slide lecture on how to survive overnight in the snow.  

Call Jason, 527-7377 

 

Let Your Chi Flow Freely 

6 - 7 p.m.  

University of Creation Spirituality 

2141 Broadway Ave. 

Oakland 

Share peace and tranquillity communally and regain harmony and balance.  

Call Idris Hassan, 835-4827 x31  

 

Lunch Poems Reading Series 

12:10 p.m. - 12:50 p.m.  

Morrison Room, Doe Library 

UC Berkeley  

Featuring the first three authors in the UC Press’s California Poetry Series. Featured poets will be Fanny Howe, Mark Levine, and Carol Snow. Free  

Call 642-0137  

 

Housing Advisory Commission 

7:30 p.m.  

South Berkeley Senior Center 

2939 Ellis St.  

 

Public Works Commission 

7:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

1901 Hearst Ave. (at MLK Jr. Way) 

 

Friday, Dec. 8  

PC Users Group 

7 p.m. 

Vista College 

Room 303  

2020 Milvia St.  

A groups of PC users who help each other solve problems. They introduce their members to new software, hardware, and invited speakers and technicians from various PC related companies. Meet the second Friday of each month.  

Call Melvin Mann, 527-2177  

 

Trunk Show with Art Quintanna 

4 - 7 p.m.  

Gathering Tribes Gallery 

1573 Solano Ave. 

Hailing from New Mexico, Quintanna specializes in older “dead pawn” Indian jewelry.  

 

An Evening Under the Stars 

5 - 8 p.m. 

Courtyard at Swans Marketplace 

Ninth St. between Washington and Clay St. 

With jazz standards playing in the background, discover the work of local artists and find a unique holiday gift. Sponsored by East Bay Galleries for Art and Cultural Development.  

Call 832-4244 

 

WomenSing  

8 p.m. 

Valley Center for the Performing Arts 

Holy Names College 

3500 Mountain Blvd.  

Oakland 

In the first concert of their 35th anniversary season titled “Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day,” WomenSing perform music of Irving Berlin, Holst, and others.  

$20 general, $18 seniors/students, $10 18 and under 

Call 925-798-1300 

 

Saturday, Dec. 9  

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Class Dismissed  

7:30 p.m. 

Boadecia’s Books 

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.)  

Kensington 

Meredith Maran discusses her book “A Year In the Life of an American High School, A Glimpse into the Heart of a Nation,” the result of her following the lives of three Berkeley High students. Free 

Call 559-9184  

 

Farmers’ Market Craft Fair 

10 a.m. - 4 p.m.  

MLK Jr. Civic Center Park  

(Center at MLK Jr. Way) 

Local craftspeople will be selling a variety of handcrafted gifts. Also live music, massage, and hot apple cider. Free 

Call 548-3333 

 

West Coast Live  

10 a.m. - Noon  

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St.  

Interviews, musical performances and a live radio play broadcast to a hundred cities worldwide. This show features the Magniolia Sisters, Alex DiGrassi, Tata Monk and author Malachy McCourt.  

Call 415-664-9500  

 

Trunk Show with Art Quintanna 

10 a.m. -6 p.m.  

Gathering Tribes Gallery 

1573 Solano Ave. 

Hailing from New Mexico, Quintanna specializes in older “dead pawn” Indian jewelry.  

 

Sunday, Dec. 10 

Parenting Book Club 

11 a.m.  

Cody’s Books 

1730 Fourth St.  

Take part in a discussion of “Mothers Who Think” edited by Camille Peri. New group members always welcome. The group meets the second Sunday of each month.  

Call 559-9500 

 

LesBiGayTrans Parenting 

11 a.m. 

Boadecia’s Books 

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.) 

Kensington 

These two groups meet on the second Sunday of each month. The group meeting at 11 a.m. is for prospective parents, the one at noon for parents.  

Call 559-9184 

 

Ancient Buddhist Tales 

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place  

Rima Tamar, storyteller and Dharma Publishing sales director, tells some classic Buddhist stories. Free  

843-6812 

 

TOCAR with David Frazier 

4:30 p.m. 

Jazzschool/La Note  

2377 Shattuck Ave.  

$6 - $12  

Reservations: 845-5373 

 

Tibetan Nyingma Open House 

3 -5 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place  

A free introduction to Tibetan Buddhist culture, including a Tibetan yoga demonstration and a meditation garden tour.  

Call 843-6812  

 

Baroque Choral Guild  

7:30 p.m. 

First Congregational Church 

2345 Channing Way 

Performing the music of Giovanni Gabrieli, Claudio Merulo, Giovanni Croce, and others.  

$20 general, $15 seniors and students  

Call 408-733-8110 

 

“From Swastikas to Jim Crow”  

10:30 a.m.  

Jewish Learning Center 

1414 Walnut St. 

Donald and Lore Rasmussen of Berkeley, and Jim McWilliams of Oakland, discuss their experiences and the experiences of others who fled Nazi Germany and ended up teaching in African-American colleges in the segregated south. Admission includes brunch.  

$4 BRJCC members; $5 general  

Call 848-0237 x127 

 

Weird Rooms 

3 - 5 p.m.  

Berkeley History Center 

1931 Center St.  

Mal and Sandra Sharpe discuss people who collect unusual things and how their collections take over their rooms.  

 

Black Images in the White Mind 

6:30 p.m. 

Walden Pond Books  

3316 Grand Ave.  

Oakland  

Jan Faulkner will give a slide show presentation of about her book, “Ethnic Notions.”  

Call 832-4438 

 

Wednesday, Dec. 13 

Oakland Preschool Fair 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Piedmont Avenue Elementary School 

4314 Piedmont Ave.  

Oakland 

Sponsored by the Neighborhood Parents Network, this panel discussion allows parents the opportunity to speak with representatives from local preschools. 

Free to NPN members, $5 general 

Call 527-6667 

 

Thursday, Dec. 14  

Ultimate Alpine Climbing  

7 p.m.  

Recreational Equipment, Inc.  

1338 San Pablo Ave.  

Join veteran alpine climber Kitty Calhoun in a slide presentation of her 20-year climbing career.  

Call Jason, 527-7377 

 

Saturday, Dec. 16 

Berkeley Artisans Holiday Open Studios 

11 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Get map from: 

1250 Addison St. #214 

or download at: http://www.berkeleyartisans.com 

Over one hundred professional artists and craftspeople open up their studios and workspaces to the public. All styles of artistic expression are represented. Runs Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 17. 

Call 845-2612  

 

Farmers’ Market Craft Fair 

10 a.m. - 4 p.m.  

MLK Jr. Civic Center Park  

(Center at MLK Jr. Way) 

Local craftspeople will be selling a variety of handcrafted gifts. Also live music, massage, and hot apple cider. Free 

Call 548-3333 

 

Sunday, Dec. 17  

Benefits of Kum Nye and Meditation 

6 p.m.  

Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

1815 Highland Place  

Miep Cooymans, Nyingma Institute meditation instructor lectures and demonstrates this gentle, self-healing system. Free 

843-6812 

 

The Disputation 

2 - 4:30 p.m.  

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut St.  

Call 848-0237 

 

Hanukkah Happening 

8 p.m. 

Shambhala Booksellers 

2482 Telegraph Ave.  

Cantor and recording artist Richard Kaplan will lead attendees in seasonal music. 

Call 848-8443 

 

Tuesday, Dec. 19 

Planning for the Future 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Ave. (at Rose) 

Informally led by Robert Berend, former UC Extension lecturer, this group aims to have intelligent discussions on a wide range of topics. They stress that there is no religious bent to the discussions and that all viewpoints are welcome. Bring light snacks to share with group.  

Call Robert Berend, 527-5332  

 

Thursday, Dec. 21 

Berkeley Metaphysic Toastmasters Club 

6:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. 

2515 Hillegass Ave.  

Public speaking skills and metaphysic come together at Avatar Metaphysical Toastmasters. Meets first and third Thursdays each month. 

Call 869-2547 or 643-7645 

 

Saturday, Dec. 23  

Farmers’ Market Craft Fair 

10 a.m. - 4 p.m.  

MLK Jr. Civic Center Park  

(Center at MLK Jr. Way) 

Local craftspeople will be selling a variety of handcrafted gifts. Also live music, massage, and hot apple cider. Free 

Call 548-3333 

 

Friday, Jan. 5  

Zen Buddhist Sites in China 

7 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

Andy Ferguson, author of “Zen’s Chinese Heritage: The Masters and Their Teachings,” presents a slide show of Zen holy sites in China. Ferguson will read from the book and engage the audience in a brief meditation session. Included in museum admission. 

$6 general, $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Thursday, Jan. 11 

Toni Stone and the Negro Baseball League 

1 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

Marcia Eymann, curator of historical photography, discusses memorabilia of Toni Stone, a woman who played in the Negro Baseball Legue in the 1940s. Free. 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

Saturday, Jan. 13 

“Dyke Open Myke!” 

7:30 p.m. 

Boadecia’s Books  

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.) 

Kensington 

A coffeehouse-style open mic. night for emerging talent. 

Call Jessy, 655-1015  

or Boadecia’s Books, 559-9184 

 

Sunday, Jan. 14 

Teaching Chinese Culture in the U.S.  

2 p.m. 

Oakland Museum of California 

1000 Oak St.  

Oakland 

Educators from Bay Area Chinese schools explore issues related to teaching Chinese culture and language. Included in museum admission.  

$6 general; $4 seniors and students with ID 

Call 1-888-OAK-MUSE 

 

LesBiGayTrans Parenting 

11 a.m. 

Boadecia’s Books 

398 Colusa Ave. (at Colusa Cir.) 

Kensington 

These two groups meet on the second Sunday of each month. The group meeting at 11 a.m. is for prospective parents, the one at noon for parents.  

Call 559-9184 

 

Berkeley, 1900  

3 - 5 p.m. . 

Berkeley History Center 

1931 Center St.  

Richard Schwartz gives an oral history of Berkeley at the turn of the century.  

 

A-Singin’ and a Chantin’ 

8 p.m. 

Shambhala Booksellers 

2482 Telegraph Ave.  

Pagan recording artist DJ Hamouris shares some songs and chants. 

Call 848-8443 

 

ONGOING EVENTS 

 

Sundays 

Green Party Consensus Building Meeting 

6 p.m. 

2022 Blake St. 

This is part of an ongoing series of discussions for the Green Party of Alameda County, leading up to endorsements on measures and candidates on the November ballot. This week’s focus will be the countywide new Measure B transportation sales tax. The meeting is open to all, regardless of party affiliation. 

415-789-8418 

 

Mondays 

Baby Bounce and Toddler Time 

10:30 a.m. 

Oct. 16 - Dec. 11 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

For children ages 6 to 36 months. Get those babies off to a good start with songs, rhymes, lap bounces, and very simple books. 

649-3943  

 

Tuesdays 

Easy Tilden Trails 

9:30 a.m. 

Tilden Regional Park, in the parking lot that dead ends at the Little Farm 

Join a few seniors, the Tuesday Tilden Walkers, for a stroll around Jewel Lake and the Little Farm Area. Enjoy the beauty of the wildflowers, turtles, and warblers, and waterfowl. 

215-7672; members.home.com/teachme99/tilden/index.html 

 

Berkeley Farmers’ Market 

2-7 p.m. 

Derby Street between Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Milvia Street 

548-3333 

 

Berkeley Camera Club 

7:30 p.m. 

Northbrae Community Church, 941 The Alameda 

Share your slides and prints with other photographers. Critiques by qualified judges. Monthly field trips. 

531-8664 

 

Computer literacy course 

6-8 p.m. 

James Kenney Recreation Center, 1720 Eighth St. 

This free course will cover topics such as running Windows, File Management, connecting to and surfing the web, using Email, creating Web pages, JavaScript and a simple overview of programming. The course is oriented for adults. 

644-8511 

 

Wednesdays  

10:30 a.m. 

Preschool Song and Story Time 

Berkeley Central Library 

2121 Allston Way 

Music and stories for ages 3-5.  

649-3943 

 

Thursdays 

The Disability Mural 

4-7 p.m. through September 

Integrated Arts 

933 Parker 

Drop-in Mural Studios will be held for community gatherings and tile-making sessions. This mural will be installed at Ed Roberts campus. 

841-1466 

 

Saturdays 

Berkeley Farmers’ Market 

10 a.m.-3 p.m. 

Center Street between Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Milvia Street 

548-3333 

Poets Juan Sequeira and Wanna Thibideux Wright 

 

2nd and 4th Sunday 

Rhyme and Reason Open Mike Series 

2:30 p.m. 

UC Berkeley Art Museum, 2621 Durant Ave. 

The public and students are invited. Sign-ups for the open mike begin at 2 p.m. 

234-0727;642-5168 

 

Tuesday and Thursday 

Free computer class for seniors 

9:30-11:30 a.m. 

South Berkeley Senior Center, 2939 Ellis St. 

This free course offers basic instruction in keyboarding, Microsoft Word, Windows 95, Excel and Internet access. Space is limited; the class is offered Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. Call ahead for a reservation. 

644-6109 

 

Compiled by Chason Wainwright 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


OPINION

By Martin Espinoza Pacific News Service
Friday November 24, 2000

 

ACAMBARO, MEXICO – When one of the United States executes a high-profile prisoner, Mexico shudders with indignation. 

If the prisoner happens to be a Mexican national, the indignation is deafening and usually laced with a healthy dose of nationalism. 

Days before the execution, the Mexican media and the country’s political leaders join to blast American society for supporting capital punishment. 

Progressive newspapers, such as La Jornada, will suddenly portray the declarations of their staple political targets as the noble efforts of human rights heroes. 

There is a pervasive sense that Mexican society is better than its American counterpart on this one defining issue, leading many Mexicans to ask, “Who is more civilized?” 

The death penalty was effectively abolished in Mexico in 1929. Mexican nationals executed in the U.S. are almost treated as martyrs, for they have died at the hands of a nation that is viewed as ever-imperialist, ever-cruel. 

Ironically, the possible use of the death penalty to combat skyrocketing crime rates in Mexico is gaining support. Mexico’s homicide rate is more than twice the U.S. rate, and in the country’s larger cities, especially Mexico City, violent crime has become painfully common. 

Drug war-related violence and high-profile kidnapping rings that prey on the country’s well-to-do and middle class have recently made the death penalty a more frequent subject in newspaper opinion pages and on radio talk shows. 

Conservative politicians, unable or unwilling to deal with the primary roots of Mexico’s crime problem – an economy that keeps two thirds of the population in poverty – are asking that Mexican society at least discuss the possibility of bringing back the death penalty. 

During the recent election cycle, a popular campaign slogan used by some gubernatorial candidates suggested the intolerance that is gripping Mexico: “Human rights are for humans, not rats (thieves).” 

Indeed, were it not for the aversion Mexicans feel when one of their compatriots is executed in the U.S., capital punishment might very well enjoy greater popularity. 

Public indignation, of course, gives Mexico’s leaders plenty of room for moral posturing. The most recent example came Nov. 9 with the Texas execution of Miguel Angel Flores, convicted of an 1989 murder and rape. 

Flores was the fourth Mexican national to be executed in the U.S. since 1976, when the Supreme Court reinstated capital punishment after a brief four-year ban. Currently, 19 of the 446 prisoners on death row in Texas are Mexican nationals, according to Richard Ellis, an attorney for Flores. (Amnesty International calculates that 44 Mexican citizens are on death row nationwide.) 

The day before the execution, Mexico’s president-elect Vicente Fox Quesada asked Governor George W. Bush for clemency, telling a reporter for that he was fundamentally opposed to the capital punishment. 

Fox also said he was greatly troubled that Flores had not been told of his right (under the 1936 Vienna Convention) to contact Mexican consular officials at the time of his arrest. The Mexican consulate did not learn of the case until July 11, 1991, a full 10 months after Flores was sentenced to death. 

Mexican government officials have said they would have provided expert counsel to Flores had they known of his arrest. But in a recent report, the Mexican Human Rights Defense League claimed that the Mexican government has not provided sufficient help to Mexican nationals sentenced to death in the U.S. and that officials become involved only when public opinion forces them to do so. 

The Texas execution of Flores is unlikely to strain political relations between Fox and Bush. Fox is widely considered an ally of Texas big business, and his call to Bush was an obligatory act of diplomacy. 

The next day, the same evening that Flores was executed, Fox was delivering an upbeat keynote speech at the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Education Fund’s 26th Annual Los Angeles Dinner. He made no mention of Flores or the many Mexican nationals on death row in the U.S. 

 

Pacific News Service commentator Martin Espinoza reports from Guanajuato, Mexico.


Council approves removal of contaminated water

John Geluardi Daily Planet Staff
Friday November 24, 2000

 

The City Council adopted an emergency item on its Tuesday evening agenda, approving $100,000 for the immediate removal of groundwater contaminated with the carcinogen chromium 6 discovered at the west Berkeley skate park construction site.  

Though city officials are saying the contaminant poses no health risks, Berkeley’s Hazardous Materials Supervisor Nabil Al-Hadithy requested the council take the emergency action so the city can immediately treat and dispose of the polluted groundwater. The emergency funds were approved unanimously by the council. 

Pending results from a private toxicologist, the city is yet to determine if work will be allowed to continue on the skate park at the corner of Fourth and Harrison streets. On Wednesday afternoon workers were landscaping the area around the skate park. 

The skate park is located next to the recently developed Fielding Soccer Field which is used by the Alameda Contra Costa Youth Soccer League. When the toxin was discovered the soccer fields were closed down for work on the fields and are not scheduled to reopen until February. 

Groundwater from the site is being pumped into 20,000 gallon portable water containers. Once the containers are full they are hauled away by a private company which filters the chromium 6 from the water. The cost of hauling each container is $14,000. Currently one container per day is being hauled away. 

“We thought is was only going to cost $7,000 per container,” Al-Hadithy said. “But there were some complications and now it costs twice that.” 

The containers are a short-term emergency solution. The city is negotiating with several companies which specialize in on-site treatment facilities to handle the groundwater there and release it possibly into a storm drain if the levels of chromium 6 can be satisfactorily reduced.  

“The other option is closing up the hole and discontinuing construction on the site until the problem can be otherwise remedied,” said Al-Hadithy 

The source of the contamination is suspected to be Western Roto Engravers Color Tech on Sixth Street about two and half blocks from the construction site. Al-Hadithy said the contaminant is part of a plume which originates at the engravers and has been carried by groundwater to the west in the shape of a tear drop. The plume is estimated to be about 700 feet in length. The Berkeley Toxics Management Division has known about the plume for at least two years and has been working with the engraving company to take care of the problem. 

Stephen Hill, the chief of the Toxics Clean Up Division at the Regional Water Quality Board said the company responsible will likely be charged the clean up costs. “In California we have a polluter pays policy,” Hill said. “We fully expect them to pay for the clean up and if they fail to do the work we’ll refer them to the attorney general.” 

The final cost to clean up the area could be $500,000 or possibly much more. 

There was no one available to answer questions at the engraving company on Wednesday. 

Chromium 6, or hexavalent chrome is an odorless chemical put to a variety of uses including hardening steel and making paint pigments. It is commonly used in aeronautic manufacturing and in electroplating shops.  

Medical experts say chromium 6 is a carcinogen in numerous animals and humans that should not be present in water at all. However, both federal and state governments classify chromium 6 as a carcinogen when inhaled but not ingested through drinking water.  

According to city officials between 1.3 and 2.1 milligrams of chrome 6 has been detected per liter of tested groundwater. 

Al-Hadithy stressed that there is no “path of exposure” connecting the chromium 6 to humans. The written discussion presented to the council said the groundwater is not potable and there are no ground wells in the area. The discussion also said the toxin “should not pose any human health impacts.”  

But it is unclear if the toxin has found its way into the soil that is being excavated and thereby becoming airborne and creating a greater risk of inhalation. Al-Hadithy said a private toxicologist is studying soil samples from the site and should have the results by early next week. 

It was only last Thursday that Berkeley’s Toxics Management Division discovered chromium 6 in water being pumped out of excavation sites at the park that are intended to be skating bowls. The nine-foot deep bowls have been filling with about a foot of water since a drainage system was installed beneath the site weeks ago.  

Al-Hadithy said the toxics management personnel had a meeting with the engraving company to discuss more aggressive measures to clean up the plume and decided it would be a good idea to test groundwater being pumped from the nearby construction site. When the toxin was discovered the toxics division took immediate action to contain the groundwater.  

When the city purchased the property from U.C. Berkeley two years ago it spent $25,000 on environmental tests to satisfy the requirements of a Environmental Negative Declaration that showed the site was safe. Groundwater was drawn from three random locations on the 6.4 acre site and none showed the presence of chromium 6. 

The city also relied on tests that were performed by the university which declared the site was safe. 

Two councilmembers, Diane Woolley and Kriss Worthington voted to not approve the declaration at the time. Worthington said they thought there had not been enough tests done and that the proponents, who primarily associated with the soccer league, were very anxious to get the field approved.  

He added that it was a very unpopular stance for him and Woolley to take. “They thought we were being obstructionist, but what we were doing was making sure that our efforts to help the kids wouldn’t hurt them.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Hagen out as offensive coordinator

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Friday November 24, 2000

Following a season of near misses and poor execution, Cal offensive coordinator Steve Hagen was officially let go Monday, head coach Tom Holmoe announced. 

Hagen’s job has been a source of speculation nearly the entire season, as the Bears never seemed to get on track offensively. Hagen was also the Bears’ quarterback coach, and sophomore Kyle Boller never made the breakthrough many expected. 

Cal finished ninth in the Pac-10 in total offense, averaging 317.5 yards per game, only a slight improvement over their last-place finish in 1999 (250 ypg), Hagen’s first year as offensive coordinator. 

Apparently the decision was left up to Holmoe by Cal Athletic Director John Kasser. The head coach said that while the offense was on the upswing at the end of the year, it just wasn’t enough improvement to justify Hagen’s return. 

“I saw some progress in the direction of our offense over the last half of the season, but not enough to convince me we were on the right path to take our offense to the next level,” he said. “Steve is a man of character. He’s good with the players and that made the decision difficult. However, we need to do what’s best for the program and for our players and I believe a change is essential at this time.”  

Holmoe said he had been contemplating Hagen’s status for the last month and came to a final decision on Sunday, following the conclusion of Cal’s 36-30 loss to the Stanford Cardinal to wrap up a disappointing 3-8 season.  

Holmoe indicated he had met with Hagen Monday morning and informed him of the decision. He said he would immediately begin a search for a new offensive coordinator and expected to have a replacement in December.  

Holmoe has definite qualities in mind for the new offensive coordinator.  

“I definitely plan to hire somebody with considerable experience as an offensive coordinator at the Division I level,” said Holmoe. “This has to be somebody who can come in and inject a spark on our offense.” 

“It’s also critical that we get a coach who has a proven track record in developing quarterbacks. Basically, this is somebody who can help us get on track right now. With nine starters back on offense, we’re not in a rebuilding situation. We expect to win right now.”  

Holmoe said that he has targeted four prime candidates and would begin discussions immediately with one or more of those coaches.  

“Since several of the candidates will be involved in bowl games, our final announcement of a coordinator may be delayed until sometime in late December, but I have every confidence that we’ll be able to land the coach we want,” he said.  

The Cal head coach also indicated that he would recommend to the new coordinator that he retain some of Cal’s current offensive coaches, but that the new coordinator would have the final authority on setting his offensive staff.


Residents miffed with Allston Way Corporation yard

By Juliet LeybaDaily Planet Staff
Friday November 24, 2000

 

 

Neighbors of the Allston Way Corporation yard are asking for peace and quiet. More than a dozen residents gathered at the yard Tuesday to voice concerns and discuss solutions to problems surrounding the city’s operations center – they want less traffic, pollution and noise.  

The community group submitted a list of demands to the yard manager and the group’s leader, L.A. Wood, took city officials and nearby residents on a tour of the facility to point out the changes they hoped to achieve. 

The Corporation Yard, located at 1326 Allston Way, adjacent to Strawberry Creek Park, is used by the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, the Berkeley Police Department and road and sewer maintenance crews. The yard houses city utility trucks, a fueling station, old park benches, gravel and dirt, and many other maintenance and repair items used on a regular basis. 

Resident Toni Horodysky, who has lived across the park from the yard for more than 25 years, complained that the yard is too noisy, creates too much pollution and houses too many large trucks. 

“We’re long suffering here. We’ve been hashing and rehashing these issues for years. It’s time to take action.” 

The three-page wish list of changes residents presented to officials includes the construction of new landscaped walls along the entire perimeter, noise reduction, elimination of long-term storage of rusted, rotten and unusable material, and a semi-annual yard cleanup.  

Residents also asked for safety measures such as adherence to established traffic flow patterns, reduction of “driving in reverse” which produces a loud beeping noise from most city trucks and consolidation of hazardous waste materials, which includes cleaning solvent. 

Yard manager Patrick Keilch agreed with most of the recommendations the residents made but said he was confused and concerned with the way they approached the meeting. 

“The thing that disturbs me is that people are not focusing on the facts. That takes away from what we really need to get done.” 

During the course of the tour Wood a longtime yard watchdog, made several allegations that the yard had recently been cited by the District Attorney’s Office for hazardous waste violations. He also suggested that the underground storage tanks were not in compliance with city and state regulations and suggested that they pose a serious risk to the neighborhood and city at large. 

Keilch asserted, however, that no charges were filed against the yard for noncompliance with city and state laws. 

“As for the storage tanks, those are doubled-walled state-of-the-art tanks. They’re as good as or better than any tank anywhere in the U.S.,” Keilch said. 

In addition, he said that he felt unprepared for the meeting that was organized by Wood. 

“I had no knowledge that Wood had canvassed the neighborhood with fliers or contacted the media. I had to scramble at the last minute to get staff together to help answer questions and if I had known I would have prepared a fact sheet.” 

Keilch added that he has an open door policy and that he welcomes suggestions and comments. 

“We should all be open and up front about what’s going on.” 

Keilch said that many of the problems could be addressed at a fairly low cost and that he is willing to work with the city and community. 

“This is the first I’ve heard that there were concerns. I haven’t had a call regarding any of these issues in two years. I want to get these issues taken care of,” he said. 

Conflicts in the west Berkeley neighborhood between the yard and residents began prior to 1992. Since that time the city has constructed a partial wall with landscaping and cleaned up the yard considerably, but neighbors say that is not enough. They are asking the city to re-address many of the same issues brought up nearly 10 years ago, such as noise control and traffic. 

Wood is calling for the creation of a review board to ensure that complaints and possible violations are monitored and addressed in a timely manner. 

“What we need is an environmental management and review board or committee to ensure that the city follow through on every single complaint and possible code violation,” he said. 

Keilch said that he would like to build a wall around the entire facility as well as address the noise issue and will be taking steps to make improvements in that direction. 

But, he was less confident that he could reduce the number of vehicles stored at the site because city-owned space is limited. 

“There is a silver lining to all of this. We may have a better chance of getting the resources to do some of this stuff with Wood and the residents behind us.”


New event regulations include safety measures

By Nicole Achs Freeling Daily Planet
Friday November 24, 2000

A 50-year-old city ordinance that restricts obscene dancing and lewd behavior at indoor entertainment events has been replaced with one that addresses more pressing concerns: police security and fire safety.  

The City Council Tuesday night approved an ordinance that regulates parties of more than 150 people held in buildings, such as residences, which are not certified to accommodate crowds. For events involving alcohol, the ordinance requires sponsors to notify the fire marshall and chief of police at least five days prior to the event, provide a fire safety checklist and hire an appropriate number of security guards. 

“This mainly affects people who want to sponsor parties of over 150 people in their home,” said Assistant City Attorney Zach Cowan, who helped write the ordinance. Such parties have resulted in incidences of property damage, minor fires and public disturbances, according to Cowan. The ordinance also applies to raves held in residences or other locations not approved for use as entertainment venues.  

Deputy Fire Chief Debra Pryor said raves have been increasing in popularity around the state. “We are concerned with the life safety and fire protection issues around these kinds of events,” Pryor said. The department is concerned that the buildings may become overcrowded and may not have adequate egress. 

“The fire department brought to our attention that there have been a number of parties that constituted a fire hazard and they haven’t had the explicit authority to shut them down,” said Cowan. The ordinance requires those responsible for the parties to give the fire department advance notice when such events are going to occur, and allows the department access to the space beforehand so they can review it for safety.  

“The ordinance gives us the ability to work with whoever is hosting an event so they can know our expectations, we can educate them about the necessary safety requirements, and we can hold them accountable if they don’t meet those standards,” said Pryor. 

The ordinance also sets guidelines for security, requiring that event sponsors provide security of up to one guard per 25 event-goers. According to Cowan, such requirements could mitigate occurrences like the riot and looting that ensued after a Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity party spun out of control Oct. 14. After the party overflowed from UC Berkeley’s Pauley Ballroom onto Telegraph Avenue, some 1,200 revelers took to the streets, smashing windows, looting shops, robbing pedestrians and inciting brawls. “If you have more security, you might have less drinking, more care to keep people from doing what they’re not supposed to do and for acting in an orderly manner,” observed Cowan. 

Rave DJ Omero Mendoza, who has been involved with the staging of numerous raves around the East Bay, expressed concern that the ordinance could make it more difficult to hold the dance parties. “Big promoters are used to dealing with the city,” said rave DJ Omero Mendoza. “But for smaller, underground parties the ordinance would change things. It could benefit the scene in that it would make it more safe for kids to have a good time and it would be better, if anything bad happened, for the police know about the event in advance.” But, he said, he worried police might keep the events from happening if they learned of them in advance. He also expressed concern that the costs of hiring additional security guards could make the cost of staging raves prohibitive. 

Asked if the ordinance would prevent some events from happening, Pryor said, “that is certainly not our intention. The intent of this ordinance is to ensure the safety of events, not to limit them.” 

The ordinance was pulled from the council calendar in May due to objections by the Associated Students of the University of California, which contended that it would restrict fraternity, sorority and co-op events. In response to the ASUC’s concerns, the ordinance was rewritten to allow large membership organizations to have private parties of up to 500 people without having to comply with the restrictions. “We certainly want to encourage young people to have parties and have fun,” said City Councilmember Kriss Worthington. “We just want to make sure it is done safely.” 

The ASUC has also called the ordinance’s recommended security standard of one guard for every 25 people “too harsh,” according to Andy Katz, director of the ASUC Commission on Student Life. “The ordinance would triple or quadruple the cost of having an event.”  

ASUC had recommended a ratio of one guard per 75 participants. The City Attorney’s Office has called this “inadequate,” referring to the events of the Kappa Alpha Psi party as proof of needing greater security. The ordinance, however, allows the police chief to approve a lower security presence.  

The Indoor Events Ordinance follows regulations the City Council enacted this summer governing outdoor events held in parks. Large outdoor parties had resulted in numerous problems with traffic blockages and neighborhood complaints about noise, particularly around the San Pablo and Codornices parks, according to Don Coykendall, Berkeley community services manager. The Park Events Ordinance requires gatherings of 50 or more people over the age of 12 to obtain permits for their events. It also allows the city to asses damages of up to $10,000 for parties that get out of control and to deny permits to people with a history of causing complaints.  


David Brower honored with day

Daily Plant Staff Reports
Friday November 24, 2000

 

Following is a proclamation honoring environmentalist David Brower, approved by the City Council Nov. 21: 

Whereas great men are rare, and Berkeley’s native son David Brower was an indisputably great man; and 

Whereas David Ross Brower was born in Berkeley on July 1, 1912, and died here on November 5, 2000; and 

Whereas David Brower was a visionary environmentalist who changed the world in ways that will earn the gratitude of generations to come, pressing on all of us some essential lessons that we will ignore to our peril: that the Earth is our only home, and that the very survival of life on Earth depends on our learning to cherish it and to reverse and repair the damage we have inflicted on our beautiful home just in recent decades; and 

Whereas David Brower fought for the health and protection of the Earth for over half a century, serving as the first executive director of the Sierra Club for 17 years, during which time the club grew from 2,000 to over 77,000 members; and 

Whereas David Brower was a pioneering outdoorsman, climber, and skier, who made some 70 first ascents of significant American mountains, and as a wilderness guide led thousands of people into – and out of – remote regions; and 

Whereas David Brower had a profound impact on the protection of America’s wild lands, helping to create national parks and seashores in Kings Canyon, the North Cascades, the Redwoods, the Great Basin, Alaska, Cape Cod, Fire Island, the Golden Gate, and Point Reyes; and in protecting primeval forests in the Olympic National Park, and wilderness on San Gorgonio; and 

Whereas David Brower played a major role in keeping dams out of Dinosaur National Monument, the Yukon, and the Grand Canyon, in establishing the National Wilderness Preservation System and the Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission, and in developing plans for a National Land Service to protect and restore both public and private lands in the United States: and 

Whereas David Brower was nominated three times for the Nobel Peace Prize and played an essential role in raising environmental awareness worldwide, in part through his creation of the popular genre of exhibit format photographic books on conservation themes; and 

Whereas David Brower in 1969 co-founded the League of Conservation Voters and founded Friends of the Earth, an international environmental organization now operating in 68 countries, and in 1982 founded Earth Island Institute to link the causes of peace, social justice, and environmental protection, taking a leading role in opposing nuclear power, leading delegations to aid in the protection and restoration of Lake Baikal in Siberia, co-founding the Ecological Council of the Americas, and developing plans for the creation of a National Biosphere Reserve System; 

Now, therefore be it resolved that the City Council of Berkeley does hereby declare that July 1, the anniversary of his birth, will hereafter be David Brower Day in Berkeley and that the City will encourage activities to honor and perpetuate David Brower’s profound legacy to the Earth. 


County stops recount in blow to Al Gore

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

In a dizzying turn of events, Florida’s largest county abruptly stopped recounting votes Wednesday, sending Al Gore’s lawyers scrambling back to court to keep a ballot-by-ballot fight for the White House grinding away. George W. Bush asked the Supreme Court to shut down all the recounts or risk a constitutional crisis. 

“I won the vote in Florida,” Bush said – a point that could hardly be more in dispute. He accused the Democrats of monkeying with laws to reverse the election’s “legitimate result.” 

Stretching into a third seesawing week, the presidential race reached new levels of unpredictability. 

Bush was temporarily reeling from a Florida Supreme Court ruling late Tuesday night that said manual recounts could continue until Sunday in the state that will determine America’s 43rd president. Bush is clinging to a 930-vote lead out of 6 million cast. 

Standing in front of a presidential-blue backdrop, the Texas governor accused the state Supreme Court of overreaching, and he had choice words for Democrats, too. “I believe Secretary Cheney and I won the vote in Florida. And I believe some are determined to keep counting in an effort to change the legitimate result,” he said. 

“If we were not witnessing, in effect, the stealing of a presidential election it would be laughable,” said Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, whose district includes part of Miami-Dade County. 

Bush’s fortunes shifted with stunning speed. Within two hours of his news conference, a three-member elections board in predominantly Democratic Miami-Dade voted to scrap its recount. If the decision stands, Gore’s presidential dreams would rest with two other southeast coast counties – Palm Beach and Broward – where his advisers feared there were not enough votes to catch Bush. 

“We hope the counts continue,” said Gore campaign chairman, William Daley. 

Gore appealed the Miami-Dade decision, but a state appeals court refused Wednesday night to force a return to recount work. Democrats said they would appeal to the Florida Supreme Court. 

Seniors advisers said the vice president’s slimming prospects depended upon the two remaining counties broadening their standards for validating votes, no sure thing, or a court forces Miami-Dade to recount – also a longshot. 

Also in the day’s swirl of events: 

— Bush’s lawyers appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, accusing the state’s high court of allowing “selective, arbitrary and standardless” recounts. Without a decision by the high court, “the consequences may well include the ascension of a president of questionable legitimacy, or a constitutional crisis,” the appeal said. 

—Bush filed suit in a Florida court asking 13 counties with heavy military populations to count overseas ballots. Hundreds of ballots, many from military outposts, were rejected last week when Democratic lawyers urged country boards to scrutinize them. Both sides believe Bush lost more votes than Gore in the rejected ballots. 

—A Palm Beach County judge said officials must consider “dimpled chad” punchcard ballots — those that show an indentation but no perforation. However, Judge Jorge Labarga said elections officials can reject the questionable ballots after trying to determine the voters’ intent. Elections board chief Charles Burton said both sides will be able to make their case Friday, but on first glance he didn’t think the ruling would change the way his board has judged ballots, a bad sign for Gore who wants the county to loosen its standards. 

—Florida’s GOP-majority Legislature considered trying to select the state’s 25 electors and award the White House to the candidate of its choice, regardless of who wins the state’s popular-vote contest. “The Legislature may have to step in and select those electors,” the House GOP leader said. Bush’s team has held open this possibility as a last-ditch way of claiming the White House. 

—House Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, said Republican leaders would be prepared to contest the outcome of Florida’s recount if it does not appear to be legitimate. Under the Constitution, members of the House and Senate can object to acceptance of electoral votes, subject to a vote of the entire Congress. 

Bush holds a 930-vote lead in Florida, not counting the results of manual recounts initiated by Gore in the three counties, where 1.7 million of the state’s 6 million ballots were cast. 

Gore had picked up 129 votes on the recounts, forcing Bush’s lead to 801. Gore would have cut much deeper into Bush’s total if Miami-Dade’s hand counts were added — 157 for Gore before counting was suspended. 

The board, one Democrat and two members who don’t list a party affiliation, cited the court’s Sunday deadline for its reversal. “It would be a minor feat and miracle for us to do it” by Sunday, said canvassing board chairman Lawrence King. 

The turnabout followed a raucous morning at the vote-counting center. Well-organized Republicans protested the board’s decision Tuesday to turn its attention exclusively to an estimated 10,000 ballots that were not punched through cleanly on Election Day. 

In a scene carried on national TV, security officers jostled with protesters outside the counting room. “Cheaters! Let us in!” the demonstrators yelled. 

Both sides believed those 10,000 ballots would boost Gore’s totals, and possibly allow him to overtake Bush. Republicans cried foul, saying GOP precincts — and potential Bush gains — would be ignored. 

After the vote to stop counting, Florida GOP chairman Al Cardenas said, “Finally, we’re getting some semblance of the rule of law here.” 

Democrats blamed the protests for the board’s about-face, saying the three board members were rattled by the events and lurched to an ill-advised decision. 

Bush, meanwhile, criticized the recount process and the Supreme Court justices, all seven of whom were appointed by Democrats. 

“Voters who clearly punched preferences in other races on the ballot but did not do so in the presidential race should not have their votes interpreted by local officials in a process that invited human error and mischief,” he said. 

“Make no mistake, the court rewrote the laws,” Bush said. “It changed the rules and did so after the election was over.” 

He said the ruling invites political “mischief” in vote-counting rooms, where Republicans believed the race was slipping away until Miami-Dade reversed itself. 

Bush gave his top lawyer, former Secretary of State James A. Baker III, authority to file the Supreme Court brief after several meetings that culminated Wednesday afternoon. Some advisers had worried about the political implications of raising the state dispute to the nation’s highest court, but the campaign felt the Florida Supreme Court’s ruling left Bush little wiggle room. 

Though Gore was dealt a setback by Miami-Dade County officials, the Bush forces were concerned the Democrats would win on appeal to a friendly judge — and the recounts would pick up speed again. Even without Miami-Dade in the mix, Bush’s vote counters said Gore could overtake them, which would make the rejected overseas ballots a critical factor. 

The recounting continued in Broward County, where Gore had gained 137 votes thus far. County election officials planned to work Thanksgiving Day to meet the Sunday deadline. 

In just one-fifth of Palm Beach’s precincts, Democrats believe they would gain about 300 votes on Bush if the standard was lowered. Their best estimates suggest an additional 400 votes could get picked up in Broward. 

Miami-Dade was supposed to be Gore’s treasure-trove, where Democrats predicted he could pick up 500 votes and some Republicans feared the number could climb to 1,000. Without the state’s most populous county, Gore’s chances of overtaking Bush were slim, several senior advisers said. 

Still outstanding were hundreds of overseas absentee ballots challenged successfully by Democrats. An unknown number of ballots from military outposts were tossed out, drawing criticism to the Gore camp from Republicans and the Clinton administration’s own defense secretary, former Republican Sen. William Cohen. 

Gore running mate Joseph Lieberman appeared to back away from the controversy Sunday, saying county officials should “take another look” at the ballots. But with the race so close, Democrats were in a fighting mood again Wednesday. 


Judge questions jury foreman in LAPD case

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

LOS ANGELES — The foreman of the jury that convicted the first three officers to go to trial in the city’s police corruption scandal told a judge Wednesday that he did not engage in misconduct that could void the verdict. 

An alternate juror claimed that foreman Victor Flores told her and another alternate before testimony in the trial that he already thought the officers were guilty. 

California Superior Court Judge Jacqueline Connor ordered the special hearing to determine whether the jury improperly discussed the case. 

Flores confirmed he had lunch with the alternate jurors, but denied he made remarks about the case and said he kept an open mind throughout the trial, reaching a verdict only during deliberations. 

He said they talked about their food and what each one did for a living. 

The alternate juror, who has been identified as Wendy L. Christiansen, 30, did not testify Wednesday. She has said that other jurors repeatedly expressed negative opinions about the defendants and their attorneys. 

Jurors are forbidden to talk about cases until they are ordered to deliberate, and then only during deliberations. 

Connor said she could not determine who was telling the truth in the conflicting testimony of Flores and Christiansen. She had not been able to contact the third juror present at the lunch. 

The judge said she would continue trying to reach the third juror, and set another hearing on the matter for Dec. 15. 

Defense attorneys maintained that the convictions must be overturned if the other alternate confirms Christiansen’s account. 

On Nov. 15, the jury convicted Sgt. Brian Liddy, Sgt. Edward Ortiz and Officer Michael Buchanan of conspiracy to obstruct justice and other crimes involving the framing of gang members. Officer Paul Harper was acquitted of all charges. 

The trial was the first stemming from allegations of corruption in an anti-gang unit at the Police Department’s Rampart station. More than 100 criminal convictions tainted by the allegations have been dismissed and nearly $30 million in settlements have been reached. Estimates suggest it could cost the city as much as $125 million. 

During the Wednesday hearing, defense attorney Barry Levin also questioned whether the jury was confused by a police report they later determined was fabricated. 

The report alleged that two gang members intentionally struck Liddy and Buchanan with a pickup truck. The gang members, Levin said, were charged with attempting to inflict bodily injury. 

Defense team interviews with jurors indicated they thought the officers, who were not hurt, tried to charge the gang members with inflicting actual injuries. 

Connor said she found that claim “troubling” and urged the defense team to provide more details at the next hearing. 


California election system changes proposed

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

SACRAMENTO — The state’s top election official on Wednesday proposed several election-system changes, including a proposal to give counties $230 million for better voting technology. 

Secretary of State Bill Jones said that while no major problems were evident in California’s election, Florida’s ongoing recount of votes for president shows the need for a strong set of election procedures. 

“Think of the thousands, and thousands, and thousands of elections in California where nobody has said a word. We have a good system, but it can get better,” Jones said. The $230 million package is less than the $300 million proposed Tuesday by Assembly Speaker Robert Hertzberg. 

The money would likely buy touch-screen computers that voters can use to cast a ballot electronically. 

Proponents of the computers point out the computers are not networked and have a smaller chance of being struck by viruses or hackers. 

Touch-screen computers were used in early voting programs in eight counties during the November election. 

Those counties were San Mateo, Marin, Trinity, Tulare, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Alameda and Monterey. Riverside County used the computers on Election Day in every precinct. Alameda County Registrar of Voters Brad Clark said some counties are still using 50-year-old technology because little state money is available for upgrades. 

“When it is the choice between a new voting system that may only be used once every so many years and the police force– you understand the problem,” Clark said. 

 

Jones acknowledged that the $230 million upgrade would not solve technology problems, since one touch-screen computer can cost more than $2,000. Increased use of the computers and competition between suppliers could help bring down the price, he said. 

Jones also proposed that already existing guidelines used for recounts in all counties be adopted into law. That would also avoid legal problems like the ones surfacing in Florida, he said. 

Other proposed changes include: 

— Notifying voters if their absentee ballots are rejected; 

— Laws requiring voters to present identification at the polls; 

— Improving the process by which voters’ registration forms collected at the Department of Motor Vehicles; 

— $10 million for voter education projects highlighting registration deadlines and the voting process; and 

— A technology fair where vendors can show cutting-edge technologies to voters. 

——— 

On the Net: 

Secretary of State: http://www.ss.ca.gov 


Group fights to strengthen Proposition 34

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

SACRAMENTO — Political reform advocates who say Proposition 34’s campaign contribution limits are too weak are considering going to the ballot in 2002 or 2004 to try to strengthen the voter-approved measure. 

“Clearly we lost the battle, but we did not lose the war,” said Tony Miller, a former acting secretary of state and a leading opponent of the proposition. 

“We do need to need to lower the limits and we do need to close the loopholes. The timing of that is uncertain at the moment.” 

Proposition 34, placed on the ballot by the Legislature and Gov. Gray Davis, limits the size of donations to state candidates. It also allows candidates who accept voluntary spending limits to buy space for their statements in voters’ ballot pamphlets. 

The proposal got 60 percent of the vote on Nov. 7, despite opposition from groups like California Common Cause and the League of Women Voters. 

They complained that the candidate donation limits in 34 were too high, that the measure would allow unlimited “soft money” contributions to political parties and that it would supersede tougher limits in a ballot measure approved by voters in 1996. 

Proposition 34 puts a limit of $3,000 per election on donations to legislative candidates from most sources. Most contributors will be able to give up to $20,000 per election to candidates for governor and up to $5,000 per election to candidates for other statewide offices. 

Small contributor committees – groups of at least 100 people who chip in no more than $200 a year – can give twice those amounts to legislative candidates and statewide candidates who are not running for governor. 

The limits will be adjusted every two years for inflation. 

There are no limits on how much political parties can give to candidates. 

Contributors can give up to $25,000 a year to a political party to support candidates, but there are no restrictions on how much parties can take in “soft money” for voter registration, get-out-the-vote and other efforts that do not involve contributions to candidates. 

The limits take effect Jan. 1 for legislative candidates and after the 2002 elections for statewide contenders. 

There are no limits now except in races to fill midterm legislative vacancies, and critics say that gives too much clout to big contributors. Efforts to impose broader limits have been rejected by the Legislature or voters, vetoed by the governor or struck down by the courts. 

The tougher contribution limits in Proposition 208, approved by voters in 1996, were blocked by a federal court judge who said the donation caps were too low to allow typical candidates to communicate with voters. 

Passage of 34 assured that courts would not revive 208’s limits. 

Miller said the initiative being contemplated would lower the limits in Proposition 34 but probably not to the level in 208, which allowed donations of up to $500 to legislative candidates and as much as $1,000 to statewide candidates from most sources. 

The ballot measure would also bar 34’s unlimited soft-money donations to political parties, Miller said. 

The reform advocates are tentatively planning to meet in January to start talking about strategy and how to raise the $700,000 to $1 million needed to get enough voter signatures to put an initiative on the ballot in 2002 or 2004, Miller said. 

“There is a consensus that there is a need to fix the problems that were created by Proposition 34,” he said. “It’s just a matter of when something goes on the ballot.” 

But one of Miller’s allies, Trudy Schafer, program director for the League of Women Voters of California, said the league is still considering its options. 

“It takes a lot of grass-roots efforts to run an initiative campaign,” she said Wednesday. “We do not have big pockets of money. We can’t ask people around the state to work hard on something until we’re reasonably sure that it has the prospect of being the right answer and being successful.” 

Jim Knox, executive director of California Common Cause, said 34’s critics might be able to get some changes in the measure by going to court or lobbying the Legislature. But he said another ballot measure is inevitable at some point. 

“I think it’s clear that 34 is not going to be the resolution of campaign finance reform in California,” he said. 

————— 

On the Web: Read Proposition 34 at www.ss.ca.gov. 


Tighter controls on electricity market proposed

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

Energy Secretary Bill Richardson proposed tighter price controls Wednesday on the California electricity market, to help combat skyrocketing rates that have plagued the San Diego area since summer. 

He urged the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to cap wholesale prices at the cost to generators for the next two years. This would contrast the current open bidding that fluctuates under a state-ordered cap of $250 per megawatt hour. 

Richardson also called for a broader investigation of pricing during recent months, to determine whether utilities cheated customers over the summer. FERC found no evidence of price fixing, after investigating from late August to November. 

“I am very concerned that California’s electricity markets continue to operate in a dysfunctional manner,” he said. 

Richardson’s nine pages of written comments to FERC are among many the agency will consider in trying to fix electricity prices that doubled and tripled for San Diego customers during the summer. Although FERC set a Wednesday deadline for comments, commissioners extended the date for their final order in the case to mid-December, giving Gov. Gray Davis a chance to submit a detailed proposal by Dec. 1. 

Richardson stopped short of urging refunds. But he appeared to side with California regulators, who have called for strict wholesale price controls and who believe FERC has the authority to order refunds. 

Later Wednesday, San Diego Gas and Electric Co. asked FERC to order refunds to customers and implement cost controls. SDG&E asked FERC to forego the idea of imposing a $150 per megawatt-hour cap on rates and instead proposed wholesale caps based on the actual cost of electricity to the generators. 

The state Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday said FERC has failed to intervene decisively in California’s electricity market. The PUC estimated there were $4 billion in excess wholesale electricity charges through the summer. 

Richardson’s comments come in response to FERC ruling Nov. 1 that prices were “unjust and unreasonable,” setting the stage for a federal order to help remedy the problems. Agency proposals include: 

• Creating a “soft cap” for auctions on electricity of $150 per megawatt hour. Prices below that figure would be accepted as usual, but companies bidding above that rate would have to file paperwork with FERC defending the higher price. 

• Requiring utility suppliers to buy 95 percent of their electricity from generators more than a day in advance, to blunt high costs. FERC would impose a fee of $100 per megawatt hour if a utility disobeyed. 

• Offering the prospect of refunds for exorbitant power costs between October 2000 to Dec. 31, 2002. 

Davis is pushing for refunds for summer costs, which FERC commissioners say they don’t have the authority to order. 

Richardson offered to mediate between Davis and FERC. Richardson agreed that FERC has no authority to order retroactive refunds. 

“It is time for the finger pointing to stop and for all of the parties to work together to put in place corrective measures as quickly as possible in order to ensure competitive markets,” Richardson said. 

Richardson said his auction proposal would result in lower prices than FERC’s “soft cap.” He said the Independent System Operator, which manages the state’s power grid and coordinates distribution of about 80 percent of the electricity statewide, should audit generators to determine their costs. 

He argued that his plan would lower rates better than the $150 soft cap, which he said “may not establish sufficient price discipline on the market until new capacity is added.” 

“The department urges the commission to consider, as an alternative, a cap on bids from existing generators,” Richardson said. 

San Diego Gas and Electric Co., with 1.2 million customers, was the first to complete the transition to deregulation under a 1996 law.  

But as the cost of wholesale electricity climbed sharply over the summer because of inadequate supply and hot weather, the utility passed the costs along to customers. 

 

The state’s two largest power utilities, Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and Southern California Edison Co., face a similar situation when they complete the transition to deregulation, perhaps as early as next year. 

Both utilities have filed suit in federal court seeking to recoup their losses, estimated at more than $5 billion between them. 

——— 

On the Net: 

http://www.ferc.fed.us/electric/bulkpower.htm 


Burglarproofing locks can be a tricky business

By Danny Lipford The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

I know from personal experience that burglars and vandals have a field day when they come across an exterior door unprotected by a dead bolt.  

Even a door equipped with a high-quality lockset is an easy target because the latch might not extend far enough into the door frame to withstand a sharp kick.  

A well-placed boot will tear the strike plate loose and splinter the jamb, providing easy access to a house. Installing a dead bolt in addition to the lockset you already have solves the problem. 

When you buy a lock, don’t look for bargains. There might not appear to be differences between a $6 dead bolt and a $16 model.  

But there are. Stick with a name brand. I’ve had good luck with Baldwin and Schlage hardware. If you’re willing to spend an extra $10, you’ll get a dead bolt three times as strong as the economy model.  

Whichever brand you choose, look for a hardened-steel bolt that extends at least an inch into the doorjamb. 

For doors that contain glass or entries with sidelights, I stay away from locks with a thumb latch on the inside. A burglar can break the glass and unlock the door. 

For these cases, a dead bolt with a key inside and outside is my favorite, but this choice is controversial because it makes it harder to get the door open in a hurry.  

That is a concern in case of a fire, especially if you have young kids. In these cases, it’s a good idea to keep a key near the door but out of sight and reach of someone on the outside.  

Some building codes require that at least one entry have a thumb-turn latch on the inside. Bottom line: Check your local building code before deciding on which type to install. 

Even a top-quality dead bolt is only as good as the weak link in the chain, and that’s the doorjamb.  

Some manufacturers reinforce the bolt with a steel pocket that is mounted in the jamb behind the strike plate. I like to go one step further.  

When we install dead bolts, we add an extra piece of steel strapping to make sure the bolt won’t blow out the back of the jamb if it is kicked. We take off the door casing and install the strapping on the inside edge of the jamb, right behind the strike plate. 

Use 2-inch screws, and rout a small hollow in the back of the casing to accommodate the strapping.  

We use flat stock about3/4 -inch wide x1/8- inch thick x 6-to-8 inches long for the strapping; it’s usually available at hardware stores and home centers. Another tip: When installing the strike plate for the dead bolt, use 3-inch screws. These are long enough to penetrate the trimmer stud an inch.  

And while the casing is off, fill the void between the framing and the jamb with solid material. You’ll get a strong, worry-free connection that frustrates potential burglars while you sleep soundly.


Many possibilities for growing cranberries

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

For gardeners, Thanksgiving is a special holiday, a time to celebrate the harvest and put it on the table, just as the Pilgrims did hundreds of years ago. Most gardeners today grow some form of the traditional fare of corn, beans, or squash. But do you know anyone who grows cranberries? 

Even in areas of the country where cranberry is native, it’s found only in special habitats, where the soil is very acidic and boggy. If you did not want to re-create these conditions, you could still grow cranberries – one of the many other plants that have this name, even if they are not the real Thanksgiving cranberry. 

Easiest to grow would be highbush cranberry, similar to the Thanksgiving cranberry only in that both plants bear tart, red berries. Our Thanksgiving cranberry is a low, sprawling, evergreen shrub; highbush cranberry is a deciduous shrub growing 10 feet high. And highbush cranberry requires no special soil conditions. 

You can appreciate highbush cranberry well before Thanksgiving arrives and long after it passes. In spring, the plant is awash with clusters of white flowers, which are transformed by late summer into drooping umbels of bright, red berries. In autumn, leaves of this plant turn fiery shades of yellow and red. 

Once the seeds are removed, the berries cook into a glistening red jelly. Two cautions are worth mentioning, though. First, do not be put off by the awful smell of cooking highbush cranberries. The finished jelly should not retain any of that aroma. (And it is absent from berries harvested fully plump.) Second, do not confuse highbush cranberry with its look-alike, European cranberrybush.  

Fruits of the latter species taste horrible. 

If you want to grow something botanically closer to the true Thanksgiving cranberry, consider lingonberry, also known as mountain cranberry, cowberry, or foxberry. 

Fruits of this creeping, evergreen shrub are similar to those of the Thanksgiving cranberry, but a bit sweeter. Lingonberry is native to the northern rim of the Old World and Asia, enjoyed with sauteed reindeer in Finland, raw in Korea, and made into wine and pickles in Japan. To give lingonberry plants the cool summer weather they enjoy, plant them on a northern slope or in part shade.  

 

They need an acidic soil that is rich in humus, but a bog is not necessary. 

Lingonberry’s compact stems, densely clothed in what resemble miniature holly leaves, provide a perfect backdrop for the bright, red berries. 


Heath family plants have special soil requirements

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

Plants of the heath family – azalea, rhododendron, mountain laurel, blueberry, heather and heath – grow wild in the soils having the unique combination of being very acidic, rich in humus yet infertile and moist and well-aerated.  

You can grow these plants if you pay attention to their rather exacting soil requirements. 

First, test soil acidity either with a home test kit or by taking a sample to your Cooperative Extension office.  

Heath plants require a soil pH between 4.5 and 5.5.  

In very alkaline soils, where it may not be feasible to lower the pH and keep it there, replace the soil from a hole 18 inches deep and 2 feet or more in diameter with a mix of equal parts sand and acidic peat moss.  

Otherwise, just acidify existing soil with powdered sulfur, per soil test recommendations, spreading the material as far as the eventual spread of the roots. 

Supply humus by mixing a bucktful of acid peat moss or composted sawdust right into the planting hole. Peat moss and sawdust decompose slowly in the soil so their benefits are long-lived. 

With the soil prepared, open up a hole wide and deep enough to accommodate the plant’s root ball.  

Slide the plant out of its container and set it in the planting hole on a mound of soil so it is at the same level as it was in the pot.  

Backfill the soil, then give the ground a thorough soaking. 

An organic mulch, such as leaves, pine needles, straw, wood chips or sawdust, will provide the cool, moist conditions enjoyed by plants in the heath family.  

And as these mulches decompose, they will further enrich the soil with humus. 

Avoid manure as a mulch, though. It is too concentrated in nutrients for the delicate roots of these plants. 

Lay 3 to 6 inches of mulch on top of the ground. As with the sulfur, spread the mulch as wide as the eventual spread of the plant. 

Mulch is especially important following autumn planting. Mulch lessens alternate freezing and thawing of the soil so a young plant, as yet poorly anchored in the soil, is less likely to be heaved up and out of the ground during the winter.  

Mulch also delays freezing of the soil in autumn, so the plant can grow as many roots as possible before the first breath of spring brings on growth of new shoots.


Storage alternatives for those who need more space

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

The one thing you always seem to need more of is storage. 

If you have one or more closets each with only a single pole, you can hold off on adding space; you can, in fact, make the best of what you have by organizing your closet to maximize storage. Storage alternatives abound. 

We can’t believe how many different companies make shelving packages out of everything from wire to melamine-covered high-density particleboard planks. The folks that sell wire shelving boast “ease-of-installation” and lightweight construction that “breathes.” We tend to like solid shelving because it is sturdier. 

Our natural tendency as modern American home dwellers is to use that good old standby, “the single pole closet system,” to do the job of shelves, cabinets, drawers and hooks. We forget that wasted space usually results. The first and most important part of improving storage is to determine what needs storing. Ten dresses, two skirts and eight sweaters store differently than 12 pairs of shoes, six jackets and 11 pairs of pants. Make a list of what you need to store and estimate approximately how much space each item will require. Shirts take up less height than overcoats or dresses, and sweaters do better on shelves than hangers. 

Measure out how many linear feet of half-height hanging space you’ll need. Hang all of your half-height clothing and measure from one end to the other. Do the same with clothing that normally hangs full-height. Some prefer to hang trousers by the cuffs; others hang them folded in half. 

Consider clothing that is being dry cleaned or laundered. And, leave a little space for wardrobe growth. If you can organize shelving so that the shelves fit your laundering habits, you will be happier with the result. 

In areas where two poles are used, only one shelf will fit above. Thirty-four inches to 38 inches will be needed for half-height hangings. Tall folks will need a bit more space. Where single-poles exist, two shelves above will easily fit. 

Sweater shelves should be designed to a familiar width. However, the space between – which will range from 16 inches to 24 inches – should be fully adjustable. This way you can adjust as your wardrobe changes. 

Think carefully about the addition of drawers. For example: gloves, jewelry and scarves can be stored in very shallow drawers. Belts, socks, stockings and lingerie will need a slightly deeper drawer and men’s underwear, sleepwear, exercise clothing and the like will require an even deeper one. Gauge drawer height by what will be stored within. Optimizing space is achieved by minimizing wasted space. A pair of gloves in a 6-inch-deep drawer wastes 51/2 inches. 

Just about every closet system company offers a planning guide or technical assistance. Some provide computer drawings and a number-matched parts list.  

However, expect to pay more for this feature. Although the big box stores offer an endless selection of precut alternatives, we like the custom shops that will personally cut all parts to exactly match your design. Remember what we said about folding sweaters? Custom cutting is where the shelves are sized to your specifications. 

If you have a table saw you can have the best of both worlds. You can purchase a precut kit and then refabricate it to meet your specific needs.  

Wire shelves aren’t as strong as solid shelving, but are easy to install. Special hangers are used against the rear wall, with a different bracket used at end walls. With brackets in place all you have to do is snip the shelf to the desired length and lay it in place. Gravity does the rest. 

 

Wire shelving also allows clothes to be viewed from all six sides. Not a bad feature if your memory is as bad as ours. 

Whatever options you choose, carefully planning closet storage can double usable storage space. 


Regrouting tile can be important to your health

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

Grungy tile grout is considered by many people to be the scourge of mankind. It is ugly and a pain in the neck to clean. And, recent studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that certain types of mold can negatively affect one’s health. 

Appearance aside, tile grout serves an important purpose. It is a tiled surface’s first line of defense against infiltration by water. It’s the whole reason you installed tile in the first place – to protect the structural elements of your home from water damage. Although grout is only one part of the big picture, its job is important. Cracks and gaps in grout are a sure sign that water is doing its one-two punch on the substrata, which can be a real knockout on the pocketbook when it comes time to make repairs. 

While grout helps prevent water damage, it is not the only source of waterproofing. A top quality tile installation will consist of a layer of straight and solid framing, a layer of building paper, a layer of mortar (we prefer floated mortar although precast mortar board is acceptable for a do-it-yourself installation), and finally the tile, grout and sealer. Therefore, if the tile or grout should ever develop hairline cracks (often not visible with the naked eye) there is a layer of protection below that will prevent damage. It is for this reason that we are strongly opposed to tile installed directly on wallboard — even if it is classified as “water-resistant.” A shower constructed of tile glued directly to wallboard is, at best, a repair contractor’s dream come true and, at worst, planned obsolescence. 

Don’t be a victim. Take control and you’ll be money ahead. Start by keeping your grout clean. One of the safest means of doing this is to use a solution that consists of one part distilled vinegar and one part water. Mix the two in a bucket and apply with a small brass brush or a toothbrush. The vinegar is a safe mild acid that will break down hard water deposits. For stubborn areas, spray the walls with vinegar and then cover the area with plastic wrap to keep it moist. This might be tedious work for a long-neglected shower, but well worthwhile. 

If vinegar doesn’t do the trick, try using hydrogen peroxide (the same stuff used on cuts). Here again, a bit of scrubbing will help cut the grease. If mildew is the problem, use the following solution: one-third cup of powdered laundry detergent, one quart of liquid chlorine bleach and three quarts of warm water. Add the bleach to the water first, then the detergent, and mix thoroughly. Even though the solution is mild, wear rubber gloves, safety goggles and have plenty of ventilation. For large areas, put the solution in a spray bottle and spray it onto the surface. Allow it to sit until the black mildew stains turn white (usually 5 to 15 minutes), but don’t allow it to dry. Rinse with fresh water, dry and seal with a high-quality acrylic or silicone tile and grout sealer. 

Once clean, if cracks are obvious or the grout is stained, discolored or just plain ugly, it’s time to regrout. This process involves removing a small amount of the uppermost layer of grout and replacing it with a fresh new layer. Both appearance and waterproofing are improved. 

When we first wrote on this subject over a decade ago, we recommended that a beer can opener be used to scrape away the upper layer of grout. Those were the days when it was easier to use our backs than our heads. Some years later we discovered a nifty tool called a grout saw – a small hand tool about the size of a toothbrush that consists of a handle attached to a small flat piece of steel covered with carbide particles. It is much more effective than the can opener and requires far less elbow grease. Now, thanks to modern technology, there is a lazy man’s alternative – a power tool. A grout removal tool can be attached to a rotary tool to remove grout as effectively as your dentist grinds old fillings out of your teeth. Just be careful not to grind the edges of the tile. Once the upper crust has been removed – usually about an eighth of an inch, vacuum away all the dust and rinse with fresh water. Next, mix up a batch of new grout to a consistency of cake icing and apply it using a rubber grout float. Hold the float at about a 45-degree angle to the tile and, working in a diagonal direction to the tile, force the grout into the joints. Excess grout should be wiped off or “struck,” using a damp sponge and fresh water. Wring the sponge out frequently to keep the tile clean and free of wayward grout. In short order, the grout will begin to dry and a haze will develop on the tile. This haze can be polished away with a piece of cheesecloth. 

The final step – sealing the grout and tile – can’t be performed for about a week – until the grout has had time to cure and dry. Use a high quality tile and grout sealer. We like one with a silicone resin. 

Epoxy is the best and should be used for added water resistance where tile is glued directly to wallboard or where extra stain resistance is needed, such as with kitchen counters.


Tips on painting your woodwork

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

Painting woodwork can be a relaxing hobby.  

For things like quick touchups, use a small, inexpensive foam brush. Avoid the wide foam brushes because they tend to drip when loaded with paint. 

Consider brush shape when you’re buying your supplies. A sash brush with its bristles cut at an angle is designed for painting thin areas and getting into hard-to-reach corners. It’s your best choice for cutting in (painting up to a line) and painting windows. A square cut brush is best for painting door panels or wide trim. Brushes with a long pencil-style handle give you a good grip and provide balance. 

You should own at least three brushes: a 1-inch and a 21/2-inch sash brush and a 21/2-inch straight brush. Buy the best brushes you can afford. Properly cared for, they will last indefinitely. 

You can use a paint roller to work wide sections, such as flat doors. Use a roller with a nap length recommended on the paint can. 

Open paint cans by prying around the lid with a wide-tip screwdriver. Pour the paint into a paint pail or a clean paint can and stir it to make sure it’s evenly mixed.  

You can pour some of the paint back into the paint can and work out of that, or work out of the pail. If you use the can, don’t fill it back up right to the rim. It’s a messy and inefficient way to work. Also, puncture the lid of the can in several places using a 4d finish nail to help drain the paint back into the can. 

In preparing the woodwork, keep in mind that paint sticks better to a dull surface. One way to remove its gloss is with a chemical solvent deglosser. Rub on the deglosser with a clean rag. This is strong stuff, so allow plenty of ventilation. 

You can also use 120-grit sandpaper with a sanding block or an electric palm sander to dull a surface or smooth out chipped areas. Feather rough areas smooth. 

Remove several layers of deteriorating paint with heat guns or chemical strippers. Your paint store should have a variety of these strippers, among them low odor and water-soluble types. Stripping is a messy job, so protect the floor and surroundings with a dropcloth. Wear old clothes and protective glasses. 

Let the gun heat up and hold it about a foot from the paint. When the finish bubbles up, scrape it away with a paint scraper. Move the gun slowly forward, and you can keep the paint hot without burning it. Keep a fire extinguisher handy when using a heat gun, and never set it down on a flammable surface. 

Apply chemical strippers with an old paintbrush. When bubbles appear, use a scraper and steel wool to remove it. Clean off the residue on the scraper using the sides of a sturdy cardboard box.  

 

A second application is often required. Let the surface dry, then sand lightly. 

Most trim has some cracks and holes in it that should be filled with spackle or wood filler before applying paint. Spackle, premixed or 2-part fillers are applied with a small putty knife. Just overfill the hole or crack, smooth the filler and let it dry. Sand the filler flush, and it’s ready for paint. You might have to use two coats on large repairs as some fillers shrink. 


Aurora gives strong production of ‘The Weir’

By John Angell Grant Special to the Daily Planet
Friday November 24, 2000

By John Angell Grant 

Special to the Daily Planet 

 

At age 27, Irish playwright Conor McPherson burst into the limelight in 1997 with his play “The Weir” that brought raves from critics and ran for two years in London’s West End theater district, winning the prestigious Olivier Award. A Broadway production followed in 1999. 

In something of a local theatrical coup, Berkeley’s skillful Aurora Theater Company has landed the rights to the Bay Area premiere of this play, opening a strong local production last week in the company’s intimate performing space in the Julia Morgan-designed Berkeley City Club. 

“The Weir” is a bar play in which a handful of characters sit around a small rural pub gabbing and gossiping, until the topic turns to ghost stories.  

Then four of the five tell stories of personal encounters with the frightening supernatural. 

Hanging out after work in scenic designer Chad William Owens’ warm, wonderful, cheery small-town rural bar set, initially the male barflies buy rounds and trade blarney about horse racing, money, liquor, women, small town gossip and backbiting, and local history. 

There is portly gabby Jack (W. Francis Walters) who owns the local auto repair shop, simple Jim (Charles Shaw Robinson) who does handyman work around town, and wary young barkeep Brendan (Allen McKelvey). 

These men are bachelors who socialize mostly with men.  

They are concerned with prices that local real estate is fetching as the town threatens to gentrify, and with outside money that will be coming in from visiting Germans during a tourist season that starts in a couple of weeks. 

The three are especially interested in a young woman (Emily Ackerman) from the city who has acquired a house in the village, and the sleazy local realtor/hotelier (Julian Lopez-Morillas) who arranged the deal. 

When the two arrive at the pub, the conversation shifts almost magically into a telling of local fairy tales and ghost stories.  

The tone of the play changes as characters in turn share personal accounts of supernatural phenomena. 

These personal accounts are in the vein of “something on the stairs” in a quiet isolated house on a dark, cold night.  

The stories include unexplained knockings on the walls, mysterious deaths, grave digging and conversations with the dead. 

With the telling of these supernatural experiences, each person seems to be suddenly communicating a fear or need in their lives, from a time when something indefinable happened. Their abilities to understand these experiences are just out of reach. It makes for a magical story. 

In this world of Irish bachelors chatting with a young woman, the supernatural stories also may be a compensation for the unbalanced and incomplete connections between women and men. 

The weir, referred to briefly in one of the fairy stories, is a dam that was built in recent memory to create and regulate the town’s water power. 

Director Tom Ross’ wonderful production has many nice touches. 

Occasionally the play’s characters get excited, for example, and all talk at once – just like a real bar full of enthusiastic drinkers. 

The cast is excellent. Aurora, is a little theater gem sitting right in the middle of Berkeley.  

McPherson graduated from University College, Dublin, in 1991 with a degree in philosophy. For two years he taught ethics and moral philosophy, while writing plays in his spare time. He is currently writing a film for Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks, tentatively titled “The Actors.”  

“The Weir” is a lovely and mysterious play about lost and found dreams. 

It reaches out to try and grasp the spiritual and mystical needs of human beings that extend beyond the concrete moments of their everyday social interactions. 

Muses barfly Jack, thoughtfully, near the end of the play as they close up the pub, “We’ll all be ghosts soon enough.” 

“The Weir,” presented by Aurora Theater Company at the Berkeley City Club, 2315 Durant Ave., Wednesday through Sunday, through Dec. 17. Call (510) 843-4822, or visit www.auroratheatre.org.


Opinion

Editorials

Man claims Napster is putting him out of business

The Associated Press
Wednesday November 29, 2000

SAN FRANCISCO — A self-described “old hippie” and music producer has filed suit against Bertelsmann BMG’s e-commerce unit, alleging it is helping to finance Napster Inc.’s online music-sharing service. 

Matthew Katz, owner of record label San Francisco Sound, said Tuesday he is nearly out of business because of Napster’s service, which allows millions to download and swap copyrighted music over the Internet. 

“My business is practically out of business,” he said. “I’m hoping this will bring attention that musicians are not getting what they should get.” 

Bertelsmann and Napster announced an accord in October that would allow Napster and Germany-based Bertelsmann to develop a secure membership-based music distribution system that will guarantee payments to artists on Bertelsmann’s label. 

Bertelsmann and other record companies are suing Napster, alleging the Internet site contributes to copyright infringement by allowing users to access copyrighted works for free online. The record giant said it would drop its suit once a payment system is put in place. Other record labels have not taken Bertelsmann’s position. 

The 9th U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco is weighing whether Napster can continue operating while the labels’ suit goes forward in a San Francisco federal court. 

Katz said the Bertelsmann-Napster accord includes a $50 million payment to Napster, and gives Bertelsmann a 40 percent stake in the Silicon Valley company. Those payments, Katz said in a suit filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, are propping up Napster so it can continue its service while the suit is pending. 

Bertelsmann spokeswoman Melinda Meals declined comment on the suit and noted that financial terms of the accord have not been disclosed. 

Katz said he has a financial interest in bands such as Jefferson Airplane, Moby Grape and It’s a Beautiful Day. 

The case is Katz vs. Bertelsmann, C004395BZ. 


Bottled water, filtration system interest rises

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 28, 2000

LOS ANGELES — Fears of chromium 6 contamination of drinking water has sparked consumer interest in bottled water and home filtration systems, but health officials assure tap water is still safe to drink. 

Water filtration companies have reported an increase in inquiries by consumers wanting to know if their treatment systems will remove chromium 6. 

“There is definitely more awareness out there,” said Dean Thompson, general manager of Culligan Water Conditioning in Sun Valley. 

The company receives about five calls a day, Thompson said. 

Fear of the chemical also has helped hike sales for water delivery companies. 

Yosemite Water Co. has added another distribution route in the San Fernando Valley.  

The company now has 35 routes in a region that has gone through decades of industrial production and led to well water contamination. 

Chromium 6 is a toxic byproduct of chromium, a very hard, metallic chemical element often used in metal plating.  

The chemical has been labeled a carcinogen when inhaled. But its effects when consumed in tap water have not yet been agreed upon by scientists.  

There have been no reports of illness or death since acceptable levels of the chemical were found in the region’s tap water. 

The state Department of Health Services insists tap water is safe, but the agency is planning to impose standards for acceptable levels of chromium 6. 

Consumers turning to bottled water for safety aren’t much better off, according to Gina Solomon, a drinking water specialist with the Natural Resources Defense Council in San Francisco. 

Solomon said tap water standards are often higher than bottled water standards, but those standards will change Jan. 1, when the bottled water industry will be required to meet tap water standards. 


4,000 Bush supporters protest in Sacramento

The Associated Press
Monday November 27, 2000

SACRAMENTO – Several thousand supporters of Texas Gov. George Bush rallied Saturday at the state Capitol, demanding a halt to the recount of Florida ballots and denouncing Vice President Al Gore. 

About 4,000 people, including many from throughout Northern California, converged on Capitol Park on a chilly, foggy day to chant, honk horns and tote placards. 

After the two-hour demonstration, hundreds of people went to their cars and drove around the Capitol, horns blaring. 

“We’re upset over the Florida recount and we came out to say so,” said Mike Smith of Paskenta, a Tehama County town about 110 miles north of Sacramento. 

Smith was accompanied by his wife, Patty, and their two children, Katie, 11, and Troy, 12. 

“It’s the legality of all this — they should quit dragging this out in Florida. Bush won,” Patty Smith said. 

Dennis Stone, a sales manager from Dixon in Solano County west of Sacramento, complained that “there already have been three recounts and that’s enough. There’s fraud and corruption going on there.” 

Bob Mulholland, the state Democratic Party’s political director, said the demonstrators were “just a Republican mob, the same Republicans that blew California.” 

“Gore won California, he will win Florida and we believe he will win the presidency,” Mulholland added. 

Similar demonstrations have been held at the Capitol in recent weeks, as well as across the country. 

In Florida, the critical battleground in the nation’s closest presidential race in 124 years, unofficial returns showed Bush leading Gore by about 500 votes out of some six million votes cast. 

Legal wrangling between the Gore and Bush camps has intensified. A U.S. Supreme Court hearing is scheduled on Friday to consider Bush’s appeal against the hand recounting of Florida ballots. 

The Florida Supreme Court ruled last week that the recounts could continue, but set a 5 p.m. EST Sunday deadline.


Nobelist’s speech linking sunshine, sex found ignoble

The Associated Press
Saturday November 25, 2000

BERKELEY — A Nobel laureate’s provocative speech on sunshine and sex left some at the University of California Berkeley campus aghast. 

James Watson, co-discoverer of DNA, dumbfounded many at a guest lecture as he advanced his theories – complete with slides of bikini-clad women – that there is a link between skin color and sex drive. 

“That’s why you have Latin lovers,” he said, according to people who were there last month. “You’ve never heard of an English lover. Only an English patient.” 

“I realized right away that this was inappropriate,” said Susan Marqusee, an associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology. 

Watson also contended that fat people are happy and thin people more ambitious, showing a slide of waif-like model Kate Moss looking sad to illustrate that point. 

Marqusee said she walked out after a comment about men finding fat women sexually attractive. “There wasn’t any science,” she said. “These aren’t issues that one can state as fact.” 

Watson has been traveling and customarily does not comment on reaction to his lectures, said Jeff Picarello, spokesman for the Cold Springs Harbor Laboratory, in Long Island, N.Y., where Watson is president. 

Picarello said Watson has given this lecture before to positive reviews and is known for mixing it up with audiences. Expounding on his theory that exposure to sunlight enhances sex drive, the mostly bald 72-year-old will announce that bald men have better sex, Picarello said.  

“He says this with a twinkle in his eye. It’s fascinating, but at the same it’s amusing.” 

Biology doctoral candidate Sarah Tegen said people were laughing at the beginning of Watson’s lecture. But the laughter turned nervous as he developed his theme – “There was a lot of looking at the person next to you and saying, ’I can’t believe he’s saying this.”’ 

The problem, says Tegen, was that Watson didn’t present the science to back up his startling presentation. 

“I think there’s a really important place in science for controversy. That’s how you overturn dogmas. But it’s got to be within a context of testable hypotheses,” she said. 

Watson, who shared a Nobel Prize for his role in discovering the structure of DNA in 1953, and who launched the Human Genome Project in 1990, was giving a speech called “The Pursuit of Happiness: Lessons from pom-C.” 

Pom-C is a protein that helps create different hormones – melanin that determines skin color, beta endorphins that affect mood and leptin, which plays a role in metabolism of fat.  

Watson talked about how these chemicals are enhanced by sunlight, leading to the supposition that people who are exposed to more sunlight have more of these hormones. 

He talked about an experiment at the University of Arizona where male patients were injected with a melanin extract.  

The test was designed to see if skin could be chemically darkened as a skin cancer preventive, but found that as a side effect the men became sexually aroused. 

Watson went on to talk about exposure to sun and sexual drive, at one point showing slides of women in bikinis and one of veiled Muslim women. 

Picarello said Watson’s theories are underpinned by biological fact. 

“He approaches life as a science and puts forth his science because that’s what he loves. I don’t think he’s afraid of public opinion. I don’t think he defers to public opinion and I think we’re all a lot better of if biology isn’t politically correct,” he said. 

James Allison, co-chair of the university’s department of molecular and cell biology, called the speech fallout a “tempest in a teapot. Jim’s a provocative guy. He certainly provoked people.” 

But some Watson supporters were concerned he went too far. 

“Doesn’t a guy like Jim Watson have the responsibility to make this not ugly?” Berkeley biologist Michael Botchan, a Watson protege who presided over the session, told the San Francisco Chronicle. “Yes. But I cannot tell Jim Watson to change his ways.”


Candidate Dick Cheney hospitalized, has surgery

The Associated Press
Friday November 24, 2000

 

 

WASHINGTON — Republican vice presidential candidate Dick Cheney had surgery Wednesday to open a clogged artery after suffering what doctors called a “very slight” heart attack, knocking George W. Bush off stride in his struggle to win Florida – and the presidency. 

Doctors at George Washington University Hospital predicted a hospital stay of a few days and a recovery of a few weeks for the 59-year-old former defense secretary, who has a history of heart disease dating to his late 30s. The illness added new uncertainty to a White House bid under a cloud ever since America voted, more than two weeks ago. 

Cheney suffered three heart attacks more than a decade ago and had quadruple bypass surgery in 1988 to clear clogged arteries. Doctors gave him a clean bill of health when Bush chose him as his running mate this summer, but Cheney has since refused to release his past medical records. 

Throughout most of the day, the Bush campaign and doctors at the hospital had insisted that Cheney had not suffered a heart attack, although he had suffered some chest pains in recent years. 

“Dick Cheney is healthy. He did not have a heart attack,” Bush told reporters in Texas – even as his running mate was undergoing surgery. Bush did not mention the surgery and called Cheney’s decision to go to the hospital “a precautionary measure.” Bush’s spokeswoman, Karen Hughes, said the Texas governor “had been told the secretary had not had a heart attack.” 

Doctors announced a news conference that Cheney had not had a heart attack. But new tests they had received two hours earlier revealed elevated levels of cardiac enzymes indicating a heart attack. Still, the doctors waited until well after 4 p.m. to correct the record. 

“There was a very slight heart attack,” said cardiologist Alan Wasserman. 

Doctors also revealed that the clogged artery causing Cheney’s chest pain was 90 percent blocked – meaning little blood was getting through that artery and reopening it was crucial. 

Cheney’s ordeal — he checked himself into the hospital – was the latest surprise to rock one of the most extraordinary election campaigns in American history. 

Under the worst circumstances, a vice president-in-waiting who becomes unable to take office can be replaced by the presidential candidate with the blessing of his party – as long as that happens before the Electoral College meets in December. 

But doctors foresaw nothing that would force Cheney from carrying out vice presidential duties should Bush and he prevail in Florida. 

Still, his condition could hamper already delayed efforts by Bush to plan for a government. Cheney has been Bush’s point man on transition. 

Bush and his aides brushed off questions about the stability of the GOP ticket and whether they were making contingency plans in case Cheney’s illness sidelined him from planning any White House transition or serving a new Bush administration. 

“Secretary Cheney will make a great vice president,” Bush said, before launching a more lengthy attack on Gore and the Florida justices for legal developments there. 

Asked whether it would be prudent to have a backup plan, spokeswoman Hughes replied: “No, it’s not.” She added that Cheney has had similar pains in recent years, but not since Bush picked him to be his running mate last summer. 

President Clinton said he hoped Cheney will be “well and fine.” 

“I need to call him and write him a note,” Clinton told reporters. 

Doctors said they did not think campaign-related stress was a factor in Cheney’s heart attack, which occurred only a few hours after Florida’s Supreme Court decided to permit manual ballot recounts in some Florida counties, a key victory for Gore. 

Cheney admitted himself to the hospital about 4:30 a.m. EST Wednesday with chest pains, his wife, Lynne, at his side. Testing two hours later revealed an artery that had narrowed since his last heart checkup in 1996, according to Wasserman. 

Through a blood vessel in his leg, doctors threaded a stent to prop open the narrowed artery, a minimally invasive surgical procedure that didn’t require putting Cheney under general anesthesia. It should prevent further symptoms, Wasserman said. 

“It would be exceedingly unlikely for him to undergo a repeat bypass operation,” Dr. Jonathan Reiner, Cheney’s personal physician, told reporters on Wednesday. 

Cheney has said he quit smoking, exercises regularly and takes medicine to lower his cholesterol. 

“It is possible that had he not come in something serious could have happened,” Wasserman said. 

Wasserman said Cheney would spend two to three days recovering but should have no restrictions after he leaves. 

However, stents do frequently reclog in heart disease patients, particularly those with a long history of the disease like Cheney’s. Patients with these conditions need to be monitored closely. 

Hughes did not provide details on how often Cheney had experienced chest pains that required medical attention. She said Cheney had not had any episodes since he was selected to be Bush’s running mate, but she did not say when Cheney’s last hospital visit had occurred. 

Reiner said earlier in the presidential campaign that cardiac stress tests “have been stable and unchanged for the past several years.” 

Cheney had a cold in the final weeks before the election but otherwise was in good health throughout a strenuous fall campaign. 

Cheney’s first attack, at age 37, was in 1978. He had a second in 1984 and a third in 1988. All were described as mild. In August of 1988, Cheney underwent the bypass surgery because of arterial blockages.