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News

Israeli reservist pans military campaign

By K.L. Alexander, Special to the Daily Planet
Monday April 01, 2002

As the Middle East peace process reeled from a week of heavy fighting in the West Bank, about 250 Berkeley residents packed a Unitarian church yesterday to renew their hope for an end to the violence. 

Leading the calls for reconciliation was keynote speaker Tamir Sorec, one of more than 300 Israeli army reservists who has told his government he will not perpetuate the violence and fight for his country in the Israeli-occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. Sorec, a sociologist, comes to Berkeley to rally support for a peaceful resolution to the Mideast conflict. “The Israelis and the Palestinians are going to destroy each other,” he said to the standing-room-only crowd at the Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, at Cedar Street and Bonita Avenue. “The way to prevent them from doing this is to support us [objectors] and say [to the Israeli government] you don’t have soldiers for this war.” 

Sorec’s avowal not to fight comes just two days after Israel began calling up thousands of army reserve officers in response to attacks by Palestinian militants that left dozens of Israelis dead last week. The Associated Press reported Friday that 20,000 Israeli reservists could soon be mobilized, marking the largest call-up since the Gulf War. 

Sunday’s second speaker Marcia Freedman, an Israeli peace activist who spent the last five months in Israel, was also quick to condemn the recent military escalation.  

“[Israeli Prime Minister Ariel] Sharon is extremely shrewd and extremely brutal,” Freedman said. “Israelis today don’t really know what’s going on... I really believe that if the people got to see this, the government would be operating in a different way.” 

Just hours before the Berkeley crowed assembled to soberly address Middle East violence, residents had gathered at the Unitarian church to celebrate Easter Sunday. 

In Israel, the Jewish holiday of Passover passed uneasily. Schools were closed last week to children, but opened for registering army reservists for active military duty. 

As a reservist, Sorec told the Berkeley audience that it was his moral obligation to resist military duty in the occupied territories. He said military operations thwarted the peace process and served only to abuse and humiliate Palestinians. 

“The situation in which 3.5 million people live under military control and without civil rights is out of the question,” he stated.  

Israeli soldiers in the West Bank are killing innocent civilians, conducting unlawful searches of Palestinian homes, and denying residents access to their friends and family, Sorec explained. 

He said that 800 Palestinian civilians had been killed in the last year and a half of fighting, while about 350 Israeli civilians have died. 

As of yesterday, 383 conscientious objectors, including Sorec, had signed the widely-publicized declaration to refuse military service in the occupied territories. The protest is dubbed Courage to Refuse. 

While Berkeley residents showed mostly admiration for the objectors, the dissidence has not been without its critics. 

One member of the audience yesterday charged that the Berkeley forum was unfairly stacked with anti-Israeli proponents, claiming the two presenters had “warmth and love” for Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. 

In Israel, government officials have also condemned the objectors, portraying them as fanatics going against the rule of the majority. Two reservists have been jailed for their protest, according to Freedman. 

Israeli policy dictates that nearly all citizens serve in their military when they turn 18. Women generally serve until age 20, and men until age 21 — and in the reserves until age 45. 

In 1996, Sorec explained that his opposition to Israeli military policy was born. Though, it wasn’t until January of this year that he made his sentiment public.  

“We came to the conclusion that if we keep our objection silent and quiet we will never be able to change the political situation,’’ he said. 

And according to Freedman, Israeli civilians are now wanting to see the situation resolved. She said Prime Minister Sharon’s approval rating had dropped from 57 percent in December to 35 percent in March because of the recent military campaign. 

“Israeli has never known such a right-wing government,” Freedman said. She feared that continued Israeli force in the occupied territories would prompt a backlash by the Arab world and launch the entire region into war. 

She praised the activism of Sorec as a means of helping temper the conflict. 

Most Berkeley residents, including audience member Myrna Sokolinsky, showed support for Sorec as well. 

“I admire him and the other conscientious objectors who are making a sacrifice and risking going to jail,” Sokolinsky said. “They understand the oppression of the Palestinians.” 

“I’m sympathetic to people trying to get a fair peace... The only real solution is for Israel to pull out of the West Bank and Gaza Strip and stop harassing and killing Palestinians,” said Charlie Shain, a Berkeleyan. Sunday’s event was sponsored by Bay Area Women in Black, a group of Jewish feminists and supporters. 

 

 

 

 

 


The East Bay belongs to us

James K. Sayre
Monday April 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

 

Your recent Forum article, “Getting beyond the fear of change to a thriving community” (The Daily Planet, March 30) was shocking and depressing. It seems that the local League of Women Voters (LWV) has morphed itself into the League of Women Developers (LWD).  

They say that we should just roll over, play dead and allow 44,000 more people to move into Alameda and Contra Costa Counties over the next 20 years. 

It seems that all of these additional residents have special needs which can only be met by cramming them into massive high-rise apartments in our bayside communities.  

Somehow, the LWD suggests that cramming additional thousands of people locally is going to make our neighborhoods more livable… Oh, sure. 

Frankly the East Bay is thriving enough as it is.  

The last thing that we need is thousands of more cars and apartments, with shopping malls to match. What ever happened to the notion of Zero Population Growth (ZPG) or even better, Negative Population Growth (NPG)? The earth is finite. The East Bay is finite. It's time to stop reproducing and inviting in ever more immigrants. 

Let 'em stay home.  

We are suffering from fear of insane development, evermore crowding the Bay Area until the livability index approaches zero. Let's think about our residential needs, not those of hypothetical immigrants.  

This land is our land, not their land.  

 

 

James K. Sayre 

Oakland


Out & About Calendar

Compiled by Guy Poole
Monday April 01, 2002


Monday, April 1

 

Race, Gender, & the “War on Terrorism”  

7-9 p.m. 

Berkeley 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 

Graduate Theological Union presents The Image of Evil in Art 

Flora Lamson Hewlett Library 

2400 Ridge Road,  

Berkeley 

Runs through Friday, May 31 

An exhibit depicting the many faces of the evil, from the fearful and loathsome creatures of medieval art to the seductive satanic figures of the 19th century and the monstrous human and animal forms of a 20th century artist like Francis Bacon. By contrasts, the devils of Latin American folk art are often caper and dance. 

For more information, call 649-2541 

 

Graduate Theological Union presents Figuras Fastasticas! The Pottery of Ocumicho 

Flora Lamson Hewlett Library 

2400 Ridge Road,  

Berkeley 

Runs through Friday, May 31 Complementing the image of evil exhibit is a library case exhibit of the imaginative pottery made in he village of Ocumicho, Michoacan, known particularly for its playful devil figures the pottery presents everyday scenes as well as religious topics. 

For more information, call 649- 2540 

 

Graduate Theological Union presents History and Memory in Biblical and Rabbinic Literature 

9-5:30 p.m. 

Sultan Room 

Center for Middle Eastern Studies 

340 Stephen’s Hall, University of California at Berkeley 

Center for Jewish Studies and the UC Berkeley welcomes Robert Alter, on rhetoric in Deuteronomy and collective memory; Galit Hasan-Rokem, on midrash between experience and myth; Ron Hendel on memory and the Hebrew bible; Dina Stein on rabbinic discourse and the destruction of the temple and Yair Zakovitch on post-traumatic memory. 

For more information, call 649-2482. 

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 

Winter Lectures on Energy 

What About Renewable Energy 

Find out how to make the sun’s energy work for you 

Berkeley Adult School 

University Ave and Bonar Streets 

For more information 981-5435 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

The Enron Debacle: What Happened and What’s Next? 

9-noon 

Clark Kerr conference Center 

Wood Krutch Theater 

2601 Warring Street in Berkeley 

keynote speaker Bala Dharan, J. Howar Creekmore Professor of Management at the Jesse H. Jones graduate school of management at Rice University will explore the complex issues surrounding the demise of Enron, implications for the accounting profession and its widespread implications for the stock market and its supporting institutions. The event is organized by the Center for Financial Reporting and Management at UC Berkeley. 

For more information call 642-0324. 

 


Wednesday, April 3

 

Spring Travel Writer’s Seminar 

Don George (Travel Editor Lonely Planet Publications 

Topic: Finding the story, exploring the experience 

Easy Going Travel Shop and Bookstore 

For more information 843-6725 

 

North Berkeley Senior Center Advisory Council 

10 a.m. 

Monthly birthday party will feature The Dixieland jazz Band, Gasteswingers and refreshments. 

1901 Hearts 

Berkeley 

For more information, call 981-5190. 

 

Melody Ermachild Chavis:  

Reporting from Recent Trip to Afghanistan and Pakistan 

5:30-8:30 pm 

Berkeley 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 

Berkeley Peace Walk and Vigil 

6:30 pm 

Berkeley 

Berkeley Peace Walk and Vigil 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 


Thursday, April 4

 

The Huston Smith Series on Religion:  

Why Religion Matters 

7:30 p.m. 

Unitarian Universalist Church 

1187 Franklin St. in San Francisco  

World renowned expert on Islam, Dr. Seyyed Nasr, to speak on Why Islam Matters 

For more information, call 415-575-6175 

 

Berkeley Metaphysical Toastmasters Club  

6:15-8:00 p.m. 

2515 Hillegass Ave. 

Berkeley 

Free, on-going meetings 1st & 3rd Thursdays, emphasizing metaphysical topics. (510) 848-6510. 

 

Graduate Theological Union presents liberation philosopher Enrique Dussel 

Noon- 2 p.m. 

Dinner Board Room, Flora Lamson Hewlett Library 

2400 Ridge Road 

Berkeley 

Enrique Dussel, pioneering scholar of the philosophy of liberation and a leading figure in Latin American liberation theology will present his recent work in “Modernity, coloniality and Capitalism in the World System.” 

For more information, call 649-2464 

 

Stop Sweatshops! Teach-in  

7:30 pm 

Berkeley 

Stop Sweatshops! Teach-in 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 

War in Colombia: A Panel Discussion 

7 pm - Berkeley 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 


Saturday, April 6

 

Library Grand Opening 

1 p.m. 

Berkeley Public Library 

The celebration will include a ribbon cutting ceremony, a keynote speech by Alice Walker, musical guests, and building tours. 548-7102 

 

Graduate Theological Union presents Suavecito  

The Politics and Poetics of Asian American Soul Music in he 1970’s. 

5 p.m. 

UC Berkeley Krutch Theater, 

Clark Kerr Campus 

2601 Warring Street in Berkeley 

A panel discussion and musical offering explore the interplay between soul music and community politics. 

For more information, call 849-8244. 

 

East Bay Regional Parks District, special events 

10-4 p.m. 

Gathering of the Scottish clans,  

Ardenwood Historic Farm 

34600 Ardenwood Boulevard, Fremont 

Fore more information, call 796-0663 

 

Noche Latina in Berkeley 

7-11 p.m. 

The Bay Area Hispanic Institute for Advancement (Bahia, Inc.)is holding its 

second annual Noche Latina event. This fundraiser will feature food catered by Cafe de la Paz, music and a silent auction. Bahia is an after-school 

program for children ages 5-10. This year's event will be held at the Law 

Offices of Duran, Ochoa & Icaza, which are located at 1035 Carleton Avenue.  

For more information, contact Estrella Fichter at 510.549.3506 or 

estrella.fichter@earthlink.net 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 - 11 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class in basic personal preparedness for emergency situations. 981-5605 

 

 


Sunday, Apr. 7

 

Minding the Body, Inc. fundraiser 

Peace it Together Fundraiser and Festival 

1-5 PM  

2218 Acton Street between Bancroft and Allston Streets Berkeley 

Proceeds will help send an emissary from the Bay Area to exchange peace-making skills with people from all over the world at the 10th Annual International Conference on Conflict Resolution in St. Petersburg, Russia. 

There will be booths, jugglers, storytellers, performance art, Music, poetry, art — most events welcoming participation — and a Vegetarian Potluck 

For more information, visit MindingTheBody.org or e-mail elise@mindingthebody.org. 

 

“Remedios”  

Benefit for Poet Aurora Levins Morales  

11-2 p.m. 

Berkeley 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 

Weekly Peace Walk around Lake Merritt 

7-3 p.m. 

Oakland 

For more information, contact: 415-285-9734 

 

Mission 911:  

Bay Area Poets for Peace 

2-5 pm  

Berkeley 

Contact: 415-285-9734 

 


Girls shine, boys stumble for St. Mary’s at Stanford meet

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday April 01, 2002

Last year, the St. Mary’s High boys were the strength of the track & field program, winning a North Coast Section title and finishing third at the state championship meet. But by the looks of it, the boys may take a back seat to their female counterparts this year. 

Tiffany Johnson and Danielle Stokes both set personal records in their individual events and gave the Panthers a big boost in the relays at the Stanford Invitational this weekend. Johnson won the long jump with a top leap of 18’3” and finished third in the 100-meter dash, and Stokes took second in the 110-meter hurdles, finishing second to James Logan’s Talia Stewart, who put up the state’s top time this season.  

The pair then teamed up with Chastity Harper and freshman Willa Porter to set a school record in the 4x100-meter relay with a time of 47.5 seconds for surprising third-place finish in the event. Holy Names High of Oakland won the event with the state’s fastest time of the season. 

“That’s a huge time for us,” St. Mary’s head coach Jay Lawson said of the relay team. “Our girls are doing great. They’re stepping up and not fearing anyone.” 

Stokes and Porter also helped the Panthers’ girls set a new state-best in the distance relay. Along with distance runners Bridget Duffy and Gabriella Rios-Sotelo, they finished the event in 12:05.9 on Friday night.  

“This is the first time I’ve run outdoors against really good competition, so I’m very happy with how I ran,” Stokes said. 

Unfortunately, the 1,200-meter leg by Duffy left the senior worn out for the mile on Saturday. After leading for the first two laps of the race, she fell back to finish seventh in 5:03, nearly 15 seconds off her personal best. 

“I think Bridget just isn’t conditioned well enough yet to go back-to-back,” Lawson said. 

Kamaiya Warren completed the girls’ impressive effort with second- and third-place finishes in the shotput and discus, respectively. Bakersfield’s Rachel Varner won both events in a continuing duel with the St. Mary’s senior, who took a narrow loss in New York last month but beat Varner at a meet two weeks ago. Warren set a personal and school best in the shotput, for which she has had more practice time so far this season after finishing third in the state last season. 

“Kamaiya’s improving by leaps and bounds every week in the shotput,” Lawson said. “She’ll show more improvement in the discus with more practice.” 

The St. Mary’s boys, on the other hand, appear to need more practice in a few events. Although Solomon Welch put in a nice performance on Saturday, winning the triple jump by more than two feet and finishing fifth in the 110-meter hurdles at his future home stadium, the rest of the boys disappointed for the most part. Their highest finish other than Welch was a fourth-place finish by Jason Bolden-Anderson in the 110-meter hurdles (Anderson also finished seventh in the 400-meter hurdles. Omarr Flood and Courtney Brown finished 17th and 20th, respectively, in the 400-meter race, and the 4x400 relay team finished 11th. 

The biggest disappointment was the anxious feet of junior Steve Murphy. After missing most of last season with pneumonia, Murphy has been jittery so far in his return to the track, a trend that continued at Stanford. He false-started in the 100-meter dash on Friday night, then did the same as the first leg of the 4x100 relay on Saturday, disqualifying the Panthers from one of their stronger events. Murphy will likely be removed from the relay team for at least a week, but Lawson knows he needs Murphy to settle down if the boys are to repeat last year’s strong efforts. 

“In my mind, there’s no excuse for the fast start in the relay, especially after talking all night about it after he did it on Friday,” Lawson said. “You can chalk some of it up to a lack of experience, but it’s more a lack of focus, which is something only he can fix.” 

The Panthers are still looking for a leader to replace departed stars Halihl Guy and Asokah Muhammed, both of whom consistently put up great finishes last season as well as anchoring the relays. Welch seems to have the consistency, but the other runners don’t seem to be following his lead. Senior Chris Dunbar is another likely candidate, but he has battled hamstring injuries the past two seasons and is just now getting healthy. 

“Our boys need to get tougher mentally if they want to have a decent season,” Lawson said. “Someone has to step up into a leadership role.”


Strike ends, rebuilding network next task for radio news reporters

By Devona Walker, Daily Planet Staff
Monday April 01, 2002

Goliath has officially cried uncle. 

The 26-month-old strike against Pacifica Network by many of its news staff is over.  

And now with two of the most visible protesters against the network, former news director Dan Caughlin and former anchor Verna Avery Brown nestled comfortably into the helm of Executive Director and Deputy Director of the network, journalist say it is time to revive the financially-strapped network and move on.. 

“This all began in January of 2000 when Dan Caughlin ran a 30 second story about the protest and he was basically fired, and we all walked out in support,” said Vanessa Tait, unpaid news staff for KPFA, a Pacifica owned radio station here in Berkeley. “ 

Tait said the protest and strike that began with 40 grew to 150 and many Pacifica affiliates pulled out on the network. 

“Now we’re not on strike — so we are trying to keep this great grass roots program on the air,” she added speaking of the Free Speech Radio Network, a news program founded by the journalist during the strike.  

 

FSRN has effectively replaced the Pacifica Network News which was cut about a month ago for budgetary reasons. 

But some might ask how does one go about reviving a beast that took more than two years to slay and has bled more than $5 million worth of debt — largely contributed to the former board of the network. 

According to Tait the support has already started to come in from member stations, like KPFA, who have been pleased with FSRN as a decentralized grass roots alternative to PNN. 

One of the early issues that arose at Pacifica was the more mainstream approach of PNN. During the strike the radio journalist were in fact reportedly replaced by Feature Stories News and the same reports going out on air were being broadcast on FOX and ABC. 

“KPFA has been very supportive. They are basically fund raising for us — and it’s been great because the popularity of Free Speech Radio helps them to raise funds,” Tait said. 

According to a prepared statement released by Pacifica, the network has agreed to recognize the journalists as being a vital part of the success of the network and they have also pledged to never censor news reports again. “Censorship, firings and bannings had become a way of life at a network nicknamed ‘the voice of the voiceless,’ ” the report stated. 

“With all of the problems with Pacifica Network News, we found FSRN the only real option in terms of a progressive national newscast,” said Denise Manzari, news director at Pacifica affiliate WPKN in Bridgeport, Connecticut. 

“When the Pacifica freelancers went on strike, we were afraid their voices would be silenced. But with FSRN came the opportunity to air these reporters again, and we’ve been really happy to carry it.” 

The financial strives of Pacifica may take a while to put a dent into the $5 million debt but according to Tait there has already been a great amount of improvement in the quality of the news broadcast — but she admits that she is not the most objective judge. 

“I think we’re doing a pretty good job,” Tait said. “It’s just so much better and the reason it is so much better is that we are going more extensive in-depth grass roots coverage of peace and justice issues around the world.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Arrogance to blame for speaker series departure

Baird Whaley
Monday April 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

 

I think we should be ashamed that the Berkeley Speakers Lecture Series has  

had to be moved to Oakland.  

Whether the Series President or the City Manager's Office was acting unreasonably is basically irrelevant.  

The fault lies with Berkeley's activist demonstrators who intimidate attendees and shout down speakers with whom they disagree; and with the apparent majority attitude toward those rowdy activists, which ranges from acceptance to encouragement. 

Berkeley is so arrogant and self righteous about its climate of tolerance and free speech, when in fact that climate applies only to those with approved opinions.  

Councilmember Spring believes the Netanyahu incident was the Lecture Series' fault for not scheduling adequate private security and notifying Berkeley Police sooner. But the real issue is why it is necessary in Berkeley to have heavy security for those who wish only to exercise first amendment rights. 

 

Baird Whaley 

Berkeley 

 

 


Bears salvage doubleheader

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday April 01, 2002

STANFORD – Eighth-ranked Cal (35-11, 2-1 Pac-10) was shut out, 6-0, by No. 3 Stanford (28-5, 1-2 Pac-10) in the first game of a double header, but came back to defeat the cross-bay rivals, 7-6, in the rubber match of the weekend series, Saturday afternoon in front of a Stanford softball record crowd of 962 at the Smith Family Stadium.  

In the opener, Stanford scored four runs in the second inning and never looked back. After retiring the first batter in the home half of the second inning, freshman pitcher Kelly Anderson was pulled in favor of Jen Deering. The junior didn’t last long as she hit the first batter she faced followed by a wild pitch that scored Maureen LeCocq from third. Jessica Mendoza and Sarah Beeson followed with walks bringing in another run.  

Freshman Cassie Bobrow came on in relief of Deering, pitching the rest of the way. The Cardinal added two more runs in the fourth inning for the final margin.  

Stanford pitcher LeCocq went the distance scattering four hits and recording her first shutout of the season to improve to 10-2. Anderson took the loss for Cal, dropping to 5-3 on the year.  

The offense woke up just in time for the second game of the afternoon. Freshman Kaleo Eldredge led off the game with an infield single. Kristen Morley bunted Eldredge over to second and then scored on senior Candace Harper’s deep double to the gap in left center. Junior Veronica Nelson followed with a single to left field and Courtney Scott slapped a RBI single to bring in Harper.  

Cal went at it again in the second inning, bringing in three runs. With two outs in the inning, Eldredge reached on a fielder’s choice. Morley walked and Harper was hit by a pitch to set up the table for Nelson, who singled again to left field for a RBI. Scott tallied her second and third RBI of the afternoon and her team-leading 31st and 32nd RBIs of the season when she placed a base hit into left center.  

The Cardinal made a late surge to keep the game close as they used three hits to bring in two runs in the sixth inning and a two run homer by Jessica Mendoza, her 10th of the year, in the seventh. Sarah Beeson struck out and Kira Ching grounded to Chelsea Spencer at short to end the game.  

The win for the Bears was its first at Stanford and the first series win over their rival since the 1999 season. Forest struck out three batters in her 19th complete game and her 90th career win, which is two shy of the No. 2 spot all-time at Cal held by Leslie Partch (1979-82).


Coming attractions for Shattuck is a five-story theater/apartment complex

By Jia-Rui Chong, Daily Planet staff
Monday April 01, 2002

When the credits roll on the last day of June, Berkeley cinéastes will have to bid adieu to the Fine Arts Cinema on Shattuck Avenue — but only temporarily. 

Developer Patrick Kennedy of Panoramic Interests, who is considered by many growth-conscientious Berkeleyans a bit controversial, plans to replace the cinema's current building and the two next to it on the southeast corner of Shattuck Avenue and Haste Street with a new Fine Arts Building.  

The 85,000-square-foot complex will keep a cinema-theme on the ground floor — combining a 300-seat state-of-the-art theater with a café and space designated for the Cinema Preservation Society.  

The five-story building will also have apartments and parking spaces.  

It has been designed in a “reminiscent art-deco” style by San Francisco architect Dan Solomon and should open in early 2004, according to Project Manager Chris Hudson. 

During construction, the Fine Arts Cinema intends to take its show on the road. Details have not been finalized yet, said Keith Arnold, one of the cinema's operators. But they are planning an al fresco patio series at La Note restaurant and events at the Castro Theatre, the Red Vic and the Parkway Speakeasy Theater. 

Arnold said he wanted to reassure loyal Fine Arts Cinema customers that they can still get their fix, though they may have to travel slightly farther to get it.  

“It will still be classic Fine Arts Cinema: silent films, live music, highly-thematic double-bills,” Arnold said. 

Unlike many of Kennedy’s projects, this appears to be coming to fruition without detractors or opposition. The planning and design process has been going smoothly since Panoramic Interests bought the property in 2000. In the past few months, both the Design Review Committee and the Landmarks Preservation Commission — which had to OK the demolition of some of the buildings which were over 40-years-old — gave the go-ahead. “I think most people have high hopes it is going to be a good project. i don’t know anyone who opposes it,” said Becky O’Malley of the Landmark Preservation Commission. “To tell you the truth I don’t know anyone who is against it.”  

O’Malley pointed to two other Kennedy projects that have won the unanimous favor of neighbors and city hall. 

City Councilmember Polly Armstrong, who has not even seen the plans, said she too was very pleased that something would be done with the buildings. 

“I haven’t seen the plans. I don’t know the size, but I’m delighted he’s going to save the theater,” said City Councilmember Polly Armstrong. “Patrick has a good ear for knowing what people in Berkeley want to preserve.”  

The project will come before the Zoning Adjustments Board in April. 

Councilmember Dona Spring, who represents the downtown business district, said she thought the new building would be a fine addition to the area. 

“It's a prime location for a mixed-used project,” said Spring. “There are places in Berkeley where it's appropriate to increase residential development.” 

In fact, this is one case where increasing density has not created strong neighborhood opposition.  

“The building is going to stretch pedestrian activity down another block, so it will help the city achieve its dream of a pedestrian-oriented downtown,” Hudson said. 

The new plans will allow the cinema to improve its technology, create better sight lines and add more seating and a balcony, Arnold said. 

The new building will also finally give the CPS, which is currently headquartered in one of the board member's homes, space to show films that even independent movie theaters have to pass up for fiscal reasons. Arnold is optimistic about the project.  

“It'll be an improved environment. We expect a level of density that this part of town has never had. Increased foot traffic will have a positive effect on any storefront business,” he said. 

David Wheelan, who has been going to the Fine Arts Cinema since it first opened, was relieved that the cinema was not disappearing completely. 

“I think it is one of the best art cinema programs in the Bay area and was mourning its pre-mature death, presumably but now incorrectly at the hands of a developer,” he said. 

“Its terrific that a developer can appreciate the needs of the community and respond so well.” 

Panoramic Interests has not yet sealed the contract with the Fine Arts Cinema, however. But Arnold is confident about the cinema's fate. Although they will have to pay higher rent in the new building, said Arnold, “It looks do-able. I have faith in this project and that he [Kennedy] will deal with us honestly for the long-term future. But would I like more commitment? Yeah.” 

Hudson said that Panoramic Interests intends to negotiate a long-term contract with the Fine Arts Cinema.  

“There's no final agreement yet, but we are going to be paying for the improvements and signing a long-term lease. 

We intend to have them there as long as they have the energy to operate it. It's not a money-making venture.”  

However, Youth Radio located in the storefront next to the Fine Arts Cinema as a supplement to their main space in the Kennedy-owned University Lofts, will not be coming back there in 2004.  

“Youth Radio is a temporary tenant. We negotiated this sweetheart deal with them where they could use the building [next to the Fine Arts Cinema] as overflow space,” said Hudson. “We are looking for other space that may be suitable for them.” 

Friends of the Fine Arts Cinema who want more information about on-the-road engagements should sign up for the mailing list at the theater itself or the web site www.fineartscinema.com. 


Schools get connected

Planet Wire Report
Monday April 01, 2002

The Alameda County Office of Education announced this week that schools throughout the county now have direct access to the Internet, including access to resources from the University of California and the California State University systems. 

The gain is part of the Digital California Project, proposed by Gov. Gray Davis two years ago. The program provides $27 million a year to set up networking systems within school districts to benefit students. 

Using the network, students will be able to access resources that were once only available at university libraries.  

“Because of the Digital California Project, Alameda (County) students are combining education with interactive technology skill-sets that will prepare them for success in college and our technology-based real world,'” said county Superintendent Sheila Jordan. 

 

 

 

 


LWV distorted facts to prove a point

Rob Wrenn
Monday April 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

 

In their open letter (Daily Planet, 3/30-31), Nancy Bickel and other officers of the League of Women Voters claim that the City Council voted to rezone the 1100 block of Hearst Street from R-3 to R-2A because they were “moved by objections to a proposed apartment building”. 

There is no evidence to support this contention. In fact, the Council voted, with only one “no” vote, to rezone after receiving a unanimous recommendation from the Planning Commission. This recommendation had nothing to do with any proposed apartment building. 

It is a matter of public record that the Planning Commission based its recommendation on the following: First, the R-3 zoning was anomalous. The 1100 block of Hearst was the only residentially-zoned block north of Hearst and west of Martin Luther King Way to be zoned R-3. Dozens of other essentially similar blocks in the area were zoned for less density than permitted by R-3 zoning. 

Secondly, R-2A zoning is a better fit for the 1100 block than R-3. It allows additional housing development without permitting development that would be out of scale with the neighborhood. Staff analysis showed that the block, which currently includes 45 housing units, could hold 67.5 units with R-2A development standards. Thus, R-2A zoning permits additional units should property owners be interested in adding additional housing units on their properties. Testimony at public hearings made clear that additional units consistent with R-2A zoning standards had in fact been added in recent decades. It was also clear that residents of these blocks had been supportive of appropriately-scaled new housing development. 

Third, and contrary to the assertion made in the League leaders' letter, rezoning is entirely consistent with policies in the recently adopted General Plan land use, housing and transportation elements. The General Plan encourages infill housing development in the Downtown, in the Southside close to the UC campus, and on transit/commercial corridors such as University, South Shattuck and San Pablo. The General Plan does not contemplate or advocate substantial increases in density in residentially-zoned areas.  

The reason for this is not hard to understand. Berkeley is a built-out city and there are only relatively few vacant, undeveloped lots in residential areas. By contrast, there are many more suitable opportunity sites for housing in commercially-zoned areas. These are precisely the areas where new housing is currently being built. There was a net gain of 1140 housing units in Berkeley between 1990 and 2000 and there are numerous projects totalling hundreds of units in various stages of the development process now. Most of these are happening in precisely the kind of locations called for in the General Plan. 

What is most objectionable in their letter is their use of the term “nay-sayers” to describe the many citizens who have taken the time to attend Planning Commission and City Council meetings. The residents of the 1100 Hearst area and the many residents from all over the city who attended the dozens of General Plan public meetings are to be commended for taking time from their families to participate in civic affairs. Residents have a right to voice their opinion about things that have an impact on them and on their families and neighborhoods. 

More housing, especially affordable housing, is needed in Berkeley. There are many appropriate locations for this housing. Hopefully, the League will actively support the City Council's recent decisions in favor of affordable housing development on the City's Oxford parking lot downtown and on the Ashby BART station air rights. Both these projects directly address the League's concern that more housing is needed for people who work here but can't afford to live here. 

 

Rob Wrenn, member, Berkeley Planning Commission 


Trojans sweep Cal

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday April 01, 2002

 

 

LOS ANGELES – The Cal baseball team lost an 8-6 lead by giving up six runs in the sixth inning and went on to fall to USC, 13-9, in the third and final game at Dedeaux Field. The Bears were swept in the series and are 19-14 overall and 3-3 in the Pac-10. The Trojans improve to 15-13 (3-0), winning 11-3 Thursday and 9-1 Friday.  

Freshman reliever Brent Hale suffered the loss as Hale and Jesse Ingram gave up five of the six runs in the sixth inning, including the go ahead two-run homer by Joey Metropoulos. The winning pitcher for USC was receiver Cory Campo and Jordan Olson earned his first save of the season.  

Cal scored a run in the top of the first on an RBI ground out by Carson White and scored twice in the second on bases loaded walks by Ben Conley and Conor Jackson. The Bears did battle back after being down 6-3 going into the fourth inning by scoring three times in the fourth and twice in the fifth for its 8-6 lead. In the fourth the Bears scored on an RBI single by Conley, a passed ball and a sacrifice fly by Noah Jackson. In the fifth, Conley had another RBI single and Conor Jackson had an RBI double. Cal's other run came on a throwing error by USC shortstop Michael Moon in the seventh inning on a potential double play ball.  

Conley (2-for-4, three RBI), Brian Horwitz (2-for-3, double) and Jeff Dragicevich (2-for-4, double) had two hits apiece for the Bears. Conor Jackson finished the series 6-for-8 with two doubles, two home runs and five RBI.  

Cal next hosts Santa Clara on Tuesday at 2 p.m. at Evans Diamond before hosting UCLA in a three-game conference series beginning Friday at 2 p.m. at Evans Diamond.


Cal ruggers remain undefeated with win in British Columbia

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday April 01, 2002

BRITISH COLUMBIA, Vancouver - In the second match of the two game home-and-away series versus British Columbia, Cal (14-0) traveled to Vancouver and came out on top 28-17 over the Thunderbirds. Senior Dave Guest scored a team-high 13 points in the win.  

For the first time this season, the Bears went into halftime without the lead, down 12-6. UBC got things started with a try in the seventh minute to put them up 5-0. Guest would answer ten minutes later, at the 17-minute mark, by hitting a penalty goal to bring Cal within two, 5-3. The Thunderbirds extended their lead at the 35-minute mark, scoring a try to make the score 12-3. At the 40-minute mark, Guest would hit the second of his three penalty goals to bring Cal within six going into the break, 12-6.  

British Columbia started strong in the second stanza, scoring another try just four minutes into the half. Down 19-6, the Bears would go on to rattle off 22 unanswered points to come from behind and claim the victory, 28-19. Guest hit his third penalty goal at the 72-minute mark to put the Bears up for good, 21-19. Tony Vontz scored a try during injury time to extend the Bears’ lead to nine.  

“We had to dig down a bit in the second half but I was happy to see that we had enough in reserve,” said head coach Jack Clark. “Full marks to UBC, we expected them to play well at home and they didn’t disappoint us.”  

The Bears face UC-Santa Barbara at 1 p.m. on Saturday in Santa Barbara, Cal’s last regular season match.


HISTORY

Staff
Monday April 01, 2002

Happy April Fool’s Day! 

 

On April 1, 1945, American forces invaded Okinawa during World War II. 

On this date 

In 1789, the U.S. House of Representatives held its first full meeting, in New York City. Frederick Muhlenberg of Pennsylvania was elected the first House Speaker. 

In 1873, composer Sergei Rachmaninoff was born in Novgorod Province, Russia. 

In 1918, the Royal Air Force was established in Britain. 

In 1933, Nazi Germany began persecuting Jews with a boycott of Jewish-owned businesses. 

In 1946, tidal waves struck the Hawaiian islands, resulting in more than 170 deaths. 

In 1947, Greece’s King George II died. 

In 1970, President Nixon signed a measure banning cigarette advertising on radio and television, to take effect after Jan. 1, 1971. 

In 1977, the U.S. Senate followed the example of the House by adopting a stringent code of ethics requiring full financial disclosure and limits on outside income. 

In 1987, in his first major speech on the AIDS epidemic, President Reagan told doctors in Philadelphia, “We’ve declared AIDS public health enemy No. 1.” 

Ten years ago 

President Bush pledged the United States would help finance a $24 billion international aid fund for the former Soviet Union. The House ethics committee publicly identified 22 current and former lawmakers as the worst offenders in the House bank overdraft controversy. 

 

One year ago 

A U.S. Navy surveillance plane collided with a Chinese fighter over the South China Sea, then made an emergency landing on China’s Hainan island. Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic was arrested on corruption charges after a 26-hour armed standoff with the police at his Belgrade villa. Notre Dame won its first national championship in women’s basketball, defeating Purdue, 66-64. 

 

 

 

 


NEWS OF THE WEIRD

The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

Bankrobber needs tip about discretionary spending 

 

SALEM, Ore. — A man suspected of robbing a bank gave himself away when he tipped a waiter $100 in order to get a seat away from the window. 

Chris Ronemus was thrilled to receive the large gratuity on a slow day at DaVinci Ristorante, but he wasn’t allowed to keep the money. 

Scott Michael Farrow, a 33-year-old unemployed painter from California, allegedly threatened a Wells Fargo teller and fled with an undisclosed amount of money Wednesday. 

Police canvassing the neighborhood entered the restaurant and asked if anyone had seen someone matching suspect’s description. An employee pointed out a man at a table inside, and mentioned the $100 tip. 


NEWS OF THE WEIRD

Staff
Monday April 01, 2002

No barefoot reading, please 

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A public library isn’t trampling on a patron’s constitutional rights by requiring him to wear shoes inside the building, a judge has ruled. 

The judge threw out Robert Neinast’s freedom of expression lawsuit Wednesday, and agreed with the library that the barefoot ban protects patrons from exposure to broken glass, blood and other bodily fluids that have been found on its floors. 

“We think the rules are reasonable and are for the good of all customers,” said library Director Larry Black. 

Neinast, who had been asked to leave the downtown library for being barefoot several times from 1997 to 2001, said he sued the Columbus Metropolitan Library for blocking his healthy lifestyle and First Amendment rights. 

“If any bureaucrat can make a rule regarding health and safety, state parks could make everyone wear sunscreen,” Neinast said.


Man convicted in dog-mauling case says he fears for his life

The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

SAN JOSE — The man recently convicted along with his wife in the dog-mauling death of their neighbor last year said he is not surprised by his conviction, but accused the prosecutors and judge of political maneuvering 

Robert Noel also told the San Jose Mercury News in an interview from San Francisco Jail Friday that expressing remorse would not have made a difference in his or his wife’s convictions. Noel and his wife, Marjorie Knoller, have also been criticized for appearing insensitive to the death of Diane Whipple. 

“I saw where the jurors said, ’They didn’t show any remorse,’ but by definition remorse is an admission of guilt,” Noel told the Mercury News. “Besides, what could I possibly say to this woman’s family? That their daughter had just died in a horrible fashion? What relevance would there be to any words I could say?” 

Noel also said he and his wife fear prison officials may try to have them killed. The couple, who are lawyers, have filed many lawsuits on behalf of inmates and have criticized California prison officials. 

The couple’s two large Presa Canarios fatally mauled 33-year-old Whipple in her apartment building nearly 14 months ago. Knoller and Noel, who kept the dogs for two California prison inmates, claimed they had no idea the dogs would turn into killers. 

Knoller, who was present when the dogs attacked, was convicted of second degree murder. She was also found guilty, along with Noel, who was not there during the attack, of the lesser charges of manslaughter and having a mischievous dog that killed someone. 

Noel, 60, has been in jail for a year since the attack. He faces four years in prison. 


Windsor standoff ends with 2 dead

Staff
Monday April 01, 2002

WINDSOR — An elderly man shot and killed his teen-age grandson before taking his own life Sunday, according to a Sonoma County sheriff’s spokesman. 

Windsor police and the sheriff’s department evacuated Royal Manor Court Trailer Park shortly after a midmorning call from Carl Donohue, who said he had shot and killed his 18-year-old grandson Jesse, according to Lt. Matt McCaffrey. 

Police had spent more than five hours outside the doublewide trailer when they heard a gunshot and saw smoke coming from the home. Firefighters contained the fire shortly afterward, but did not say what caused the fire. 

When police entered the trailer around 4 p.m., they found the bodies of both men, McCaffrey said. It appeared they both had been shot to death. 


Zinfandel grape might become state fruit

By Stefanie Frith, The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

SACRAMENTO – David Phillips grows grapes, Zinfandel grapes. And one of his wine labels seems to describe best the way people feel about a wine that may finally be getting some respect. 

“It’s called the Seven Deadly Zins,” said Phillips, who co-owns the Michael-David Phillips Vineyards in Lodi. “Zinfandel people are different. We’re kinda wacky.” 

They’re also wild about their wine and the grape it comes from. Last year, more than 10,000 people attended the annual Zinfandel Advocates and Producers (ZAP) conference in San Francisco. A University of California, Davis researcher spent more than seven years tracking the grape’s origins to the coast of Croatia. 

And now, with a group of school children leading the way, the Zinfandel grape may become California’s state fruit. That would help cap a revival of the grape previously best known as the source of the wine oenophiles love to hate — white Zinfandel. 

Fourth graders from James McKee Elementary School in Elk Grove, on the edge of the state’s Zinfandel belt, lobbied their local assemblyman, Republican Anthony Pescetti of Rancho Cordova, to write a bill proposing the Zinfandel grape as the state fruit. 

The students and Zinfandel boosters point to the grape’s 12 percent price increase last year, to $520 a ton, and the amount of land devoted to Zinfandel cultivation, 50,200 acres in California (second only to the Cabernet with 70,000), as more reasons why it’s a perfect candidate for the state fruit. 

Those fourth graders found that the Zinfandel is the most widely planted red grape in California; it was first planted in the state during the 1800s; some vines in the Sierra Nevada foothills are at least 125 years old and still producing grapes; and they were an important part of the agricultural growth in the west during the Gold Rush. 

“Zinfandel people are very passionate,” said Rebecca Robinson, executive director of ZAP. “I like to say it captures our pioneering spirit in a bottle. There’s something different and fun and exuberant about the wine and the people who choose to grow it and drink it.” 

It’s this different and fun image that often has wine aficionados turning up their noses at Zinfandel, which crushes into white and red wines. The white wine is actually pink, because at the crush the grape’s skin is quickly separated from the juice, leaving a slightly sweet taste and rosy pink color. 

The red wine has an older, spicier, more brash taste. 

Until recently, white Zinfandel has had a history of being cheap, said Bruce Boring, owner of the California Wine Club, because it’s a quick cash crop. It’s made almost instantly, able to be bottled within 12 months of harvest. Wine critics say it is often used as an alternative to beer. 

“There’s a lot of inexperienced wine drinkers, so white zin is a good starting point,” said Boring. “It’s a pleasant wine.” 

But John Brecher, a Wall Street Journal wine columnist, said white Zinfandel is finally getting more respect, because people realize it’s very food friendly. 

“It can be a very good wine,” Brecher said. “It’s a nice, fun wine to drink that people don’t have to feel intimidated about. And what’s so wrong with that?” 

It’s also become unbelievably popular. White Zinfandel is estimated to have sold about 16.3 million cases in 2000, up from 9.3 million cases in 1996. 

The Red Zinfandel market grew to 3.1 million cases in 2000 compared with 2.1 million cases in 1996. 

Altogether, wines made from Zinfandel grapes represented 21 percent of the California premium table wine shipped in 2000, according to Gomberg-Fredrikson & Associates, which follows the wine table closely. 

At the farm gate level, which is the amount the producer is selling their product for, the Zinfandel was worth $171,892,000 in 2000, according to the state Department of Food and Agriculture. 

While that shows Zinfandel is becoming bigger, honoring it as the state fruit is “kind of an off the wall idea,” said Dave Parker, director of Canadian and United States merchandising for the California Tree Fruit Agreement, a Fresno-based organization representing fruits like nectarines, peaches and plums. 

Also, said Dominique Hansen of the California Strawberry Commission, strawberries bring in more money than Zinfandel grapes. Last year, 87 million trays of strawberries were shipped from the 26,000 acres of strawberry fields in California last year. Their farm gate level was $767,360,000. 

All told, said Steve Lyle, a spokesman for the state Department of Food and Agriculture Department, agriculture brings about $27 billion to the state economy. 

The students behind the pro-Zinfandel bill said they took all this into consideration but still backed the grape, pointing out that it’s not just for wine, but jam and pasta sauce, too. 

Plus, pushing the bill is “a really good feeling,” said fourth grader Nadine Small. “It’s like being a part of history.” 

Boring agreed, saying, “You can’t find a friendlier wine.”


Less abalone this season as concerns rise about maintaining fishery

By Margie Mason, Associated Press Writer
Monday April 01, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO – Sport divers who revel in finding abalone clinging to reefs will be bagging less of the meaty mollusks this season thanks to poachers, over fishing and potential diseases. 

Abalone season opens in Northern California on Monday, but free divers used to bringing home 100 animals a year will now be limited to 24. The state Fish and Game Commission also dropped the daily limit in December from four to three as a safeguard to help preserve one of the world’s richest remaining wild sources of red abalone. 

“Abalone in California is precious,” said Chamois Anderson, spokeswoman for the state Department of Fish and Game. “Only one species left in the entire family is at a level where we can even take it, and if we don’t manage it carefully, it will fall on the list of extinction with the others. If it did that, it would be a real sad day.” 

Over the past decade, abalone take has increased 27 percent in Sonoma and Mendocino counties, the most popular abalone diving areas. Businesses there fear the lowered limits will have a drastic effect on their bottom lines. Nearly 40,000 abalone licenses are issued annually for the estimated $20 million industry, which dozens of bed and breakfasts, restaurants and specialty shops depend on for survival. 

“I think a lot of people felt like that was a little extreme,” Charlie Lorenz of Subsurface Progression dive shop in Fort Bragg said of the limit changes. “For a business that resolves around diving, it’s most likely going to have some impact, and it’s probably going to be negative to the overall economy.” 

Diving was closed off to all of the state south of San Francisco in 1997 after a disease called withering foot syndrome decimated much of the black abalone population there. The bacteria that causes the disease was recently found on the North Coast in the red abalone population, but biologists say there is no indication it’s spreading. 

The disease has forced thousands, who are no longer permitted to dive in the south, to come north. It also has driven black market abalone prices up to $80 apiece or $200 if smuggled to Japan, Andersen said. The mollusks, easily identified by their iridescent spiral shells, are eaten as a delicacy and used as an aphrodisiac. 

A special abalone operations unit now uses high-tech equipment to track poachers who often dive with prohibited scuba gear. The team of game wardens sometimes spends months gathering enough evidence to bring down complex abalone rings. Wardens estimate illegal fishing accounts for about 12 percent of the annual take, which is less than half of what’s harvested legally. 

The penalties for poaching range up to $40,000 in fines and three years in prison. 

“It’s right up there with the drug trade. These are criminals that are stealing a resource that you and I own,” Andersen said. “It’s tragic.” 

Marine biologists say that the lowered take, in effect until the 2004 season, was also implemented because abalone reproduction has been poor over the past few years. Abalone can live up to 35 years and reproduce well into its later years, but ocean conditions and events like El Nino make predicting population size impossible. Abalone also grows slower in cold water than in warmer areas. 

Konstantin Karpov, senior fish and game biologist based in Fort Bragg, said about 2 million pounds of red abalone is taken during the seven-month season, and it takes about 14 years for an abalone to reach 7 inches, the minimum size for sport divers to take. 

“There are not as many young coming in. We’re taking more than can replace themselves,” Karpov said. “Areas are getting fished down, and then people are moving on to the next location. It’s almost like island hopping.”


Fallen priest’s Healdsburg parish still reeling

By Kim Curtis, The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

Rape trial shocks community 

 

HEALDSBURG – In this bucolic Northern California town, where the Roman Catholic Church stands a few blocks from a grassy square bordered by wine and antique shops, parishioners are reeling from a 20-year-old sex scandal. 

The Rev. Don Kimball, who worked at St. John the Baptist Church in the early 1980s, has been on trial for rape and lewd conduct. He is being tried now, more than two decades after the alleged crimes, because of recent changes in state law that extended the statute of limitations for sex crimes involving children under 14. 

Kimball’s trial is part of a nationwide purge of decades-old abuse. Pastors in some parts of the country are stepping to the pulpit and vowing the church no longer will brush aside its problem priests, or quietly transfer them to unsuspecting parishes as the Santa Rosa diocese did with Kimball. 

The Santa Rosa diocese, in an effort to allay members’ concerns, prepared a written pledge for distribution on Easter Sunday. The diocese pledged to strictly enforce a policy of no tolerance of sexual misconduct by a priest or any church worker. 

“We state unequivocally that this diocese is committed to a prompt and decisive course of action in response to any and all such allegations,” the three-page statement said. 

But for some parishioners, it’s too little, too late. 

“Most intelligent people don’t want the priest or the pope making decisions about how to proceed,” lifelong parishioner Richard Catelli said. “You go to the police immediately. You don’t ask permission from the bishop. You don’t go to Rome. All these procedures are baloney.” 

Catelli, 65, is still giving money to St. John’s, but the scandals have made him stop and think. 

“It’s hard to give any money because it’s not going where it should go,” he said outside St. John’s before Good Friday services. 

Former Santa Rosa bishop John Steinbock testified during Kimball’s trial that he offered Kimball an assignment in a jail or hospital after Kimball admitted fondling six teen-agers. Kimball was suspended when he refused reassignment. He remains a priest, but does not administer the sacraments. 

The Rev. Thomas Devereaux, current pastor at St. John’s, says church secrecy and attempts to solve problems internally are things of the past. 

“This is an awful thing to have happen in a church,” he said Friday from his parish office. “This is not how clergy should behave. This is not how to build trust.” 

Devereaux said he’s been open and honest with his 1,400 parish families since the sex scandals erupted. 

“I didn’t hide behind anyone or anything,” he said, adding that he has addressed the topic during his sermons and held meetings after Mass. A few weeks ago, he talked to the parents of his First Communicants about it. 

The diocese, which covers six Northern California counties and has spent $7.4 million settling sex abuse claims, has struggled with revelations of priest misconduct that led to one priest’s suicide and imprisonment of another priest who founded a church camp. 

In 1999, Catholics were stunned by the resignation of Bishop G. Patrick Ziemann, who admitted having an affair with a former Ukiah priest. In response, a five-member Sensitive Issues Committee was set up and charged with reviewing any new allegation of priest misconduct. No such allegations have surfaced since Ziemann’s resignation. 

Devereaux says he’s seen Sunday Mass attendance drop as people become less trusting and more suspicious. 

“I’m a little bit leery,” said Tricia Shindledecker, 39, a Healdsburg attorney. “I was brought up Catholic, though, and there’s still a feeling, especially on Good Friday, of healing. Sex abuse is a systemic problem, but it doesn’t push you away from being Catholic, because being Catholic is so much more than that.” 

Nearly every churchgoer stopped outside St. John’s on Good Friday believed priests should be allowed to marry. 

“They have needs like everybody else,” said 89-year-old Marge Montaldo. “Temptation is terrible. They’re held to a higher standard, but they’re only human. They’re not some alien creatures down here.” 

A Gallup Poll released Wednesday found that 72 percent of Catholics believe the church has done a poor job dealing with sex abuse cases. It also found that almost three-fourths of Catholics believe the hierarchy is more concerned with protecting the church’s image than solving the problems of sexual misconduct. 

Nevertheless, Jon Jones, a pastoral associate at St. John’s, believes upheaval within the church could have positive effects. 

“We have a congregation that’s demanding accountability,” he said. “It helps the congregation achieve a sense of ownership that they are the church. In light of the scandals, we’re all in this together.”


Report: Ex-LAPD deputy chief investigated for money laundering

The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

Son’s alleged cocaine ring under scrutiny 

 

LOS ANGELES – A retired Police Department deputy chief is under investigation for real estate transactions that authorities believe may have laundered money from a cocaine ring headed by his son, it was reported Sunday. 

Police officials have been looking into allegations against 66-year-old Maurice Moore for more than a year, the Los Angeles Times reported. 

A 40-year LAPD veteran, Moore retired in January as investigators from the Police Department and FBI probed his financial ties to his son, Kevin Moore, a convicted cocaine trafficker. 

Authorities are looking at two real estate transactions connected with Maurice Moore to determine whether he attempted to hide assets generated by his son’s Detroit-based cocaine dealing, the Times said, citing public documents and interviews with witnesses. 

Both transactions occurred in 1992, while Kevin Moore was in federal prison for smuggling about a half ton of cocaine into the country. His drug dealing continued in prison, according to court records and sources, the Times said. 

In one of the transactions, the elder Moore purchased an apartment building in Los Angeles in 1992. Seven years later, as Kevin Moore was about to plead guilty to money laundering, he claimed the apartment building belonged to him. 

The other deal involves a house in Cheviot Hills that was transferred into Maurice Moore’s name on July 7, 1992. The house was deeded to him by Cheryl Frazier, whose sister, Anna Moore, was married to Kevin Moore and participated in his drug and money-laundering enterprises. 

In a 1999 plea agreement to money laundering in connection with prison orchestrated drug dealing, Kevin Moore agreed to turn over $1 million in drug profits to the government, and in return, prosecutors agreed not to seize the two properties. 

However, records indicate that neither of those properties was his, the Times said. That was significant because federal law gives authorities the ability to seize property purchased with drug proceeds or used to facilitate drug transactions. 

Maurice Moore, through his attorney, denied any wrongdoing but declined to comment further. His lawyer also declined to discuss the matter in detail. 

The Times said LAPD detectives recently traveled to Detroit to meet with investigators who worked on the Kevin Moore cocaine case, as well as interviewing several potential witnesses in the Los Angeles area. 

The allegations came as Moore concluded a long career with the LAPD. Moore joined the department in 1961 as black officers were being integrated into the force. He worked his way up through the ranks, and was promoted to deputy chief by Chief Bernard Parks in December 1998. He is a friend of Parks and also served as Parks’ special assistant.


Government trains cyberdefenders

By Matthew Fordahl, The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

MONTEREY — Long before Sept. 11 and last year’s virus-like attacks over the Internet, the U.S. government announced plans to train an elite corps of computer security experts to guard against cyberterrorism. 

Officials warned it would be only a matter of time before terrorists learned to exploit vulnerabilities in major systems, from air traffic and banking to spacecraft navigation and defense. 

Now, more than three years later, the first students have been awarded scholarships to study computer security in return for working at least two years at a federal agency after graduation. 

But is it too little, too late? 

“In terms of solving our cybersecurity problems, it doesn’t have a chance,” said Michael Erbschloe, vice president of research at the consulting firm Computer Economics and author of books on cyberwarfare. 

Only about 180 students over four years will get scholarships from the first round of federal grants awarded last May to six universities. More schools will be added this year, increasing the corps by 120 students. 

Though President Bush has asked for $19.3 million more for the cybercorps this fiscal year in an emergency $27.1 billion supplemental appropriations request, he has proposed only about $11 million for fiscal 2003 — the same amount Congress has granted the past two years. 

“Eleven million dollars just doesn’t buy you a lot,” Erbschloe said. 

Organizers acknowledge the numbers are small, but they believe even a few well-trained experts can make a difference and demonstrate the wisdom of more spending in security education. 

Graduates are expected to become more well-rounded than most network specialists, who receive training merely on specific systems, or even computer science graduates whose academic programs often ignore security altogether. 

The aim is to create experts who know enough about security to make decisions on buying equipment and software for government and to anticipate vulnerabilities. 

“It might be nice to have 39,000 people, but the fact that we can have 100 is a lot better than having zero,” said Andy Bernat, program director of Federal Cyber Service at the National Science Foundation, which is overseeing the program along with five other federal agencies. 

At the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, about a dozen civilians are participating in the cybercorps and taking the same computer security classes as military students. 

After two years, the students will have a master’s degree in computer science with an emphasis in information security — along with practical experience. 

In one exercise, each student will try to secure a system that will be targeted by hackers from the National Security Agency, Air Force and Army. 

Other classes focus on hackers’ techniques and security theories. 

“We cannot ahead of time predict all the things someone might do to a system,” said George Dinolt, a professor at the Naval Postgraduate School. “That’s part of the problem with the approach people are taking to try to solve the security problem.” 

The cybercorps schools’ emphasis on security differs from most college computer science programs, which tend to focus on programming and other basics rather than making systems all but impenetrable. 

That is likely to change, given not only recent reports of serious vulnerabilities but also the realization that terrorists can and will exploit weak points — whether in airline security or computer networks. 

 

 

 

 


Botox awaits FDA approval

The Associated Press
Monday April 01, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Not since the early days of Viagra has a lifestyle drug garnered so much attention as Botox. 

Botox has erased early wrinkles on young women, flattened the furrowed brows of middle-aged TV anchormen, removed sweat stains under the arms of runway models, and even erased gamblers’ unwanted facial expressions. 

In the process, the muscle-paralyzing substance has become one of the most profitable products for Allergan Inc., which first branded the drug more than a decade ago for treating crossed eyes. 

Botox is a laboratory refined strain of botulinum toxin — one of the most poisonous substances on earth — that’s given in extremely small therapeutic doses. Botulinum toxin causes botulism and is a favored tool of bioterrorists. The cult Aum Shinrikyo dispersed a strain of it in aerosol form in several failed attacks in Japan in the early 1990s. Botox already has regulatory approval to treat certain spasmic disorders. But it’s the drug’s wrinkle-busting properties that have created a national buzz. 

“I am getting to the point where the lines are a little more noticeable. (Botox) is an easy way to soften that change,” said Lisa J. Davis, a 30-something Los Angeles TV producer. 

Men and women of all ages have made Botox injections the most popular cosmetic medical procedure in the nation since 2000, even though the procedure may produce side effects such as swelling or numbness. The Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve the drug for cosmetic use, but the agency doesn’t prevent doctors from using it in this way. 

 


East Bay honors Cesar Chavez

By Jia-Rui Chong, Daily Planet staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

Si, se puede! 

The United Farm Workers’ chant – Yes, it can be done! – rang out over the waterfront Friday as schoolchildren, teachers, local officials, musicians and Berkeley residents celebrated Cesar Chavez Commemoration Day. 

The Chavez Circle of Service Partnership, a group of East Bay organizations that encourage community service as a means of honoring the legacy of the labor and environmental activist, organized the event to coincide with Friday’s state holiday. 

In the main presentation, students from Thousand Oaks School, Rosa Parks School, Cragmont School and the East Bay Conservation Corps Charter School honored Chavez’s virtues of non-violence, determination, courage and hope.  

But it was also a learning day for the children: volunteers from the Lawrence Hall of Science also showed them how to tell time by the sun, important in telling farmers when to plant and harvest before they had today’s technology. 

Mayor Shirley Dean read an official proclamation that made March 29, 2002 Cesar Chavez Commemoration Day and praised Chavez’s work for better wages, living conditions, health care and the environment. 

“Each of you can have that kind of voice,” Dean said to the students. 

Superintendent Michele Lawrence, Councilmember Linda Maio and Cesar’s nephew Frederico Chavez also addressed the audience, praising the UFW founder for his inspirational fight for justice. 

Fourth-grade teacher Tim Howeth said that EBCC Charter School’s emphasis on “service-learning,” in which classroom learning is paired with community service, made it particularly important to participate in honoring a man who made his ideas a reality. 

 

“It’s important for kids to see who served in the past and made an impact on the lives of others,” Howeth said. 

Indeed, Frederico Chavez hoped that his uncle left a larger legacy than just another holiday. 

Thanking the crowd on behalf of the family, Frederico went on to say that he hoped the day would teach things to help children maximize their potential. 

“I hope that this can be about more than just giving state employees a day off,” said Frederico. 

Salvador Murillo, a Berkeley resident who worked with Cesar in the early ‘70s, agreed. 

“The No. 1 priority has to be getting your education. It’s not like you name a street and forget about it,” said Murillo. 

Murillo helped establish Cesar Chavez Park and is proud of Chavez’s connections to Berkeley. 

“He loved Berkeley. When things were tight, he came here for retreat, to renew his energy,” he said. 

One of Cesar’s favorite places would be an appropriate site for a major memorial, said Santiago Casal, who organized the commemoration for the Chavez Circle. 

“Berkeley is one of those communities in which struggles for social justice are very conspicuous. There are always protests around there and there is tremendous sympathy for the civil rights leader,” said Casal. 

This celebration was part of a larger effort to create a memorial for Chavez in Berkeley, said Casal, since there are no significant memorials to Latinos in the United States. Casal estimated hopefully that a memorial can be a reality in three years with a budget of $75,000. 

At their last meeting, City Council approved the installation of a temporary solar calendar, which could become part of a permanent memorial.  

But Councilmember Kriss Worthington hoped that more could be done by the Berkeley city government to honor Chavez. He had harsh words for politicians who he felt were doing only lip service to Chavez’s memory. 

“If people really cared about Cesar Chavez, they should hire and appoint Latinos,” Worthington said. 

 

 


Keeler Avenue in Cragmont tract was named for Berkeley poet, naturalist and artist

By Susan Cerny, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday March 30, 2002

On March 21, 1907 the Berkeley Reporter announced “Poet Keeler Gets First Honor. Literature and art are to be highly honored and especially Berkeley writers and artists, in the naming of streets in the new Cragmont tract. ... The poet Charles Keeler will have the first street in the new tract named after him. This is particularly appropriate, as Keeler is one of the most ardent admirers of Berkeley and has never let a chance slip by when he could sing her praises.” 

The developers, Francis Ferrier and Charles Brock, claimed that this would be “the only tract of its kind in the United States ... being wholly devoted to literature and the arts.”  

Charles Keeler was a naturalist, a poet and writer, and one-time manager of the Chamber of Commerce. He was also Berkeley’s most vocal advocate of building homes in harmony with nature and is responsible for the founding of the Hillside Club in 1898.  

Keeler was born in Milwaukee, Wis., but arrived in Berkeley at the age of 16 in 1887. According to Berkeley Historical Society member Ed Herny, Keeler was unable to complete his studies of natural history and evolution at the university and took a job at the Academy of Sciences in 1891.  

By 1893 he had completed his first book Evolution of the Colors of North American Land Birds. Later volumes included Bird's Afield (1899), San Francisco and Thereabouts (1902) and Sequoia Sonnets (1919) a collection of his poems. 

Keeler’s most influential and often quoted book is The Simple Home of 1904. It sets forth the design and aesthetic ideals of building homes which blended with the beauty of Berkeley’s natural environment.  

Keeler was influenced by the English Arts and Crafts Movement inspired by naturalist John Ruskin and designer William Morris. His own house was designed by Bernard Maybeck in 1895 and the studio next door in 1904. Both buildings are representative of what Keeler envisioned as a “simple home.”  

Other streets in Cragmont named for writers, poets or artists include Miller Avenue(novelist Joaquin Miller), Twain (Mark Twain), Sterling Avenue(poet George Sterling), Keith Avenue (painter William Keith), Stevenson (Robert Louis Stevenson), and Muir Way (naturalist/writer John Muir).  

 

 

 

 

Susan Cerny is author of Berkeley Landmarks and writes this in conjunction with the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association.


War, snake oil and circuses

Philip Farruggio
Saturday March 30, 2002

Editor: 

 

Take a few minutes to channel surf. Ah, the choices they give us, our corporate controlled media. Lets see, Channel X has the regular news talk show, covering our “War against Terror.” They inform us of how many troops we are sending, how many warships, air strikes and “collateral damage” to stop this spread of terror. Not one show ever questions the increased military spending, or how more weapons and troops can stop suicidal maniacs. Not one show focuses on why today’s “most wanted” were yesterday’s “most favored” (and financed) allies- or the futility of a multi-billion dollar missile defense shield. My streetwise grandfather said it best: “things are never what they seem!” The enemy of my enemy should not necessarily by my friend. 

Whatayasay we switch channels now? Let’s see, Channel Y has the televangelist network. Just in time, too, as the preacher is telling us what Jesus stood for and what his parables meant. Yet, though Jesus castigated the Pharisees for their riches and their hypocrisy, these preachers never take that road to salvation. They never quote Jesus’: “easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich man to go to heaven!” In between the requests for donations and more donations, the sale of videos and pilgrimage bookings, one never hears mention about the polarizing wealth in the hands of the few, to the detriment of the many. 

Let’s see what's on Channel Z. Oh, right on, it's the sports center show. All day, all night, we can get up to the minute scores and highlights. Its so important to know, over and over again, who won last night, who scored how much, and of course, who signed what new contract for how many millions.  

Meanwhile, Mr. and Mrs. average family of four, with Mom and Dad both working full time, cannot afford the $200 needed to attend a professional game. That cash is better spent (and better be spent) paying off the too often used (lately) credit card. While on the topic of commercial ventures, how about that NCAA tournament? I call it the National Commercial Advertisement Association. Wasn’t it great to see a little basketball in between those commercials? 

So there you have it. Under the “spell” of the boob tube, to be patriotic is to follow the “pied pipers” of the airwaves. They direct us to wave our flags, support any war, (undeclared or not), give up the Bill of Rights and agree to suspensions of civil liberties. They want us to occupy our free time with prime time miracles and sports, sports, sports. Follow them we must, like lemmings into a sea of turmoil. 

Well, I’ll tell ya who the true patriots were. Men like Mark Twain, who said the purpose of government was “to protect us from the crooks and scoundrels” (hear that Kenny Lay?). Another patriot was “muckraker” George Seldes. He called apathy “the disease of civilization.” Seldes questioned government and corporate leaders so much that he was censored out of a mainstream career. 

Remember the founders of this republic? Those Patriots investigated many sources (censored or not) and compiled as many facts as possible. Then they questioned authority before it ended up questioning them! As for me, I’m gonna catch that channel with the black and white film noir, especially the one about the “Pods” taking over. 

 

 

Philip Farruggio 

Port Orange, FL 

 

Philip Farruggio, son of a longshoreman, is “Blue Collar Brooklyn” born, raised and educated (Brooklyn College, Class of '74). A former progressive talk show host, Philip runs a mfg. rep. business and writes for many publications. You can contact Mr. Farruggio at e-mail: brooklynphilly@ aol.com.


Spike Lee documentary tails convicted football hero Jim Brown

By Christy LeMire, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

Jim Brown began a six-month jail sentence this month for bashing his wife’s car windows with a shovel in 1999. 

You’ll hear a little bit about that in Spike Lee’s documentary “Jim Brown: All-American.” But you won’t gain an understanding of the volatility and rage that drove Brown to such destruction. 

Lee paints an unabashedly flattering portrait of one of the greatest running backs in football history, who turned his athletic fame into a film career, followed by social activism. 

The director mixes highlights from the football field and the silver screen with interviews from former teammates, sports journalists and co-stars, all of whom sing his praises. And they should; at 66, Brown’s been a charismatic, revolutionary cultural figure for nearly half a century. 

But he touches only briefly on the ugly parts of Brown’s personality — including a history of violence against women and a detachment from his children — without delving into their origins. 

Lee begins with Brown’s childhood as one of the few blacks in Manhasset, N.Y., where he moved at age 8 when his mother took a job there as a domestic. 

Even as a sophomore at Manhasset High School in 1951, Brown obviously was going to be one of the best athletes the school had even seen, according to his football coach, Ed Walsh. 

While Brown also excelled at basketball, golf and tennis, his strongest sport was lacrosse, which he played along with football at Syracuse University. 

Walsh recalls an early example of the racism Brown endured: The Syracuse football coach was reluctant to take Brown because he didn’t want any more blacks on the team, and agreed to accept him only if Walsh would help him enforce 10 rules, one of which barred Brown from dating white girls. 

As would become his style, Brown did what he wanted to do. He ended up at Syracuse, where he proudly flaunted his white girlfriend at practice. 

(Lee’s method for recounting this time in Brown’s life is awkward and contrived, having him meet his aging former lacrosse teammates on the Syracuse field to toss the ball around.) 

Easily, the most exciting parts of the movie are the highlights from Brown’s nine seasons with the Cleveland Browns, from 1957-65. When he retired, no player had run for as many yards (12,312) or scored more touchdowns (126) or rushing touchdowns (106), which put him in the Hall of Fame. 

Over and over, he floats across the field for touchdowns — four or five defenders can’t take him down. Even though he was big for a running back at 6-foot-2, 230 pounds, he made it look effortless. 

In a briskly paced sequence, Brown demonstrates how he used his left arm as a club to fight off would-be tacklers, and describes how he wasn’t shy about showing off for the competition. 

“I might stride a little bit in front of them,” he says with a smile, “let ’em see what they gotta look out for.” 

That attitude drew the attention of a Hollywood agent, who thought he’d be perfect for action films. Brown was a revolutionary presence on the screen — a virile, almost threatening black man, in contrast to the sophisticated characters Sidney Poitier played. And in movies like the 1969 Western ”100 Rifles,” he did something previously unheard of — an interracial love scene (with Raquel Welch). 

Having already helped other blacks start businesses, Brown established the Amer-I-Can Foundation in 1988 to help troubled young people, and he met with gang members after the Los Angeles riots, hoping to foster peace. 

But during these years, he also was arrested repeatedly on suspicion of assaulting women; in 1985, O.J. Simpson lawyer Johnnie Cochran defended him against a rape accusation. 

One of the most infamous incidents involved a girlfriend, Eva Marie Bohn-Chin, whom he may have pushed off a second-floor balcony in 1968 — or she may have jumped, depending on whom you ask. Lee’s he said-she said account offers no concrete answers. 

After gathering raves from Welch and Oliver Stone, Art Modell and Hank Aaron, Lee provides the only remotely negative comments toward the end of the movie, from Brown’s adult children. 

Kevin Brown, a recovering drug addict, says his father never embraced him as a child, and hugged him for the first time only recently. Daughter Kim says her dad never had time to attend her ballet recitals, but she understood because he was so busy. And Jim Brown Jr. describes the pressure of carrying his father’s name — which he says pushed him away from football and toward basketball. 

Perhaps we’re supposed to surmise that he was distant because of his experience with his own parents; he and his father had what he called a “verbal pact,” that his father wouldn’t be part of his life, and his mother kicked him out of the house in high school when he disapproved of her dating. 

Despite the glossy treatment, Lee proves again that he’s a talented storyteller, cramming nearly 50 years of momentous moments into a documentary that, at over two hours, feels neither rushed nor slight. 

“Jim Brown: All-American,” an HBO Sports release, is not rated. Running time: 130 minutes. Three stars (out of four). 


Out & About Calendar

Compiled by Guy Poole
Saturday March 30, 2002


Saturday, March 30

 

 

Keep Kids Street Safe 

1:30 - 4 p.m. 

YWCA 

1515 Franklin St., Oakland 

A national campaign helping keep children safe and healthy. Highlights include food, prizes and music. 530-1319, compeace@concentric.net 

 

 


Sunday, March 31

 

 

GAIA Arts and Cultural Center 

Patrice Wynne and Maria Teresa Valenzuela 

Art, Healing and the Creative Process 

Presentation, exhibit and sale open house 

4-8 p.m. 

For more information, call 848-4242 

 

 


Monday, April 1

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 

Winter Lectures on Energy 

What About Renewable Energy 

Find out how to make the sun’s energy work for you 

Berkeley Adult School 

University Ave and Bonar Streets 

For more information 981-5435 

 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

 


Wednesday, April 3

 

 

Spring Travel Writer’s Seminar 

Don George (Travel Editor Lonely Planet Publications 

Topic: Finding the story, exploring the experience 

Easy Going Travel Shop and Bookstore 843-6725 

 

 


Saturday, April 6

 

 

Library Grand Opening 

1 p.m. 

Berkeley Public Library 

The celebration will include a ribbon cutting ceremony, a keynote speech by Alice Walker, musical guests, and building tours. 548-7102 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 - 11 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class in basic personal preparedness for emergency situations. 981-5605 

 

 


Monday, April 8

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

 


Tuesday, April 9

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Spring Travel Writer’s Workshop 

7:30 p.m. 

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave.  

The Fire Escape is Locked For Your Safety 

 


Wednesday, April 10

 

 

Spring Travel Writer’s Seminar 

Linda Watanabe McFerrin (Award-winning poet, travel writer, author of Namako: Sea Cucumber and The Hand of Buddha) 

Topic: Mechanics of Travel Writing 

Easy Going Travel Shop and Bookstore 843-6725 

 


Thursday, April 11

 

 

Bicycle Maintenance 101 

7 p.m. 

REI 

1338 San Pablo Ave. 

Rodian Magri will teach participants how to perform basic adjustments on their bikes to keep them in good working condition. 527-7377  

 

Spring Travel Writer’s Seminar 

7:30 p.m. 

Scratching the Surface: Impressions of Planet Earth, from Hollywood to Shiraz 

Easy Going Travel Shop $ Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave. 

843-3533 

 

 


Saturday, April 13

 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 a.m. - 1 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class disaster mental health. 981-5605 

 

 


Monday, April 15

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

 


Tuesday, April 16

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Spring Travel Writer’s Seminar 

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore 

1385 Shattuck Ave. 

Packing Demonstration 

How to pack for three weeks, two climates in one manageable carry-on bag For more information call 843-3533 

 

YWCA Turning Point Career Center 

Brown Bag Career Talk 

Frank Vargas of the city of Berkeley will speak on the process of gaining employment in the many aspects of city government 

2600 Bancroft Way 

12 -1 p.m. 

$3 

 

Compiled by Guy Poole 


’Jackets bash Pinole Valley

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

Berkeley High explodes for 20 hits against thin Spartan pitching staff 

 

What was expected to be a tight matchup between two ACCAL contenders turned into a laugher on Friday as the Berkeley Yellowjackets pounded out 20 hits and scored in every inning of a 16-2 shellacking of host Pinole Valley. 

Eight different Berkeley players had at least two hits, including three-hit days from Matt Toma and Bennie Goldenberg, and DeAndre Miller and Chris Wilson each drove in three runs to spearhead the ’Jacket outburst as the visitors set new season highs in hits and runs. 

“Today was a pleasant surprise, but we’ve been hitting for last two weeks,” Berkeley head coach Tim Moellering said. “Ever since we played Bishop O’Dowd (an 11-5 win) our bats have been on fire. It doesn’t matter who we face right now.” 

That might be true, but the ’Jackets (5-3, 2-0 ACCAL) got a scheduling break in their first matchup with the Spartans (5-1-1, 1-1). Pinole Valley ace Kurt Koehler, who hasn’t lost a game in two years, pitched on Wednesday against Encinal, leaving the Spartans in the shaky hands of Jeff Molina on Friday. Molina lasted just three innings, giving up four runs on six hits. The bullpen wasn’t any better, as three more pitchers combined to give up nine more runs on the way to their first loss of the season. 

Berkeley, on the other hand, has the deepest staff in the league. With any easy game against Richmond on Wednesday, Moellering had the option of resting lefty Sean Souders for Friday’s game. The junior responded with a sparking outing, allowing just one run on a Scott Scoefield homer in the second inning. Souders responded by setting down the next 13 batters in a row before giving up an infield single to Miguel Bernard, and gave up just three hits in his six innings of work for his second win of the season. 

“Most teams in our league have to get by with one good starter, and that’s tough if you have two tough games in a week,” Moellering said. “But for us it doesn’t matter, because we have the luxury of having two experienced starters as well as several solid options in the bullpen.” 

The last time the ’Jackets faced Pinole Valley, the Spartans won to send Berkeley into a tailspin that nearly knocked them out of the playoff picture. Souders said he came into Friday’s game wanting to prove a point. 

“They put us into a losing streak last year, so I wanted to come out and show them who’s the team to beat this season,” he said. 

The ’Jackets scored five runs in the sixth inning for a 13-1 lead, which would usually signal the end of the game thanks to the “slaughter rule.” But the teams’ coaches said before the game that they wouldn’t stop the game early, although Moellering said he didn’t think either team considered such a large deficit a possibility. 

Pinole Valley head coach Frank Fruzza, on the other hand, considered his team to be on shaky ground without Koehler on the mound. Fruzza said he was “auditioning” for the second starter’s spot as late as Tuesday. 

“I didn’t expect to lose like that, though,” Fruzza said. “We didn’t play a very good game from the get-go. When you get down five or six runs, the wheels can just come off, and that’s what happened today.” 

The ’Jackets should expect to see Koehler in the rematch on May 1, as the Fruzza knows he doesn’t want to see anything resembling Friday’s disaster again. 

“We’re not nearly this bad a team,” he said. “I don’t expect to see that again.” 

Souders said he was anticipating a pitching duel with Koehler. 

“I was disappointed I didn’t get to go against him today,” Souders said. “Hopefully we can go head-to-head in the next game.” 

But the Berkeley hitters didn’t seem too depressed about facing the weak end of the Spartan rotation. 

“We were expecting a much tougher game, and we know we caught a break not facing Koehler” Toma said. “But it’s always fun to come in and just bomb someone.”


Embattled lecture series leaves town

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

The Berkeley Speakers Lecture Series, which has brought luminaries from documentary filmmaker Ken Burns to former Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbit to town, is packing up and heading for Oakland, citing frustration with the city manager’s office and the Berkeley Police Department. 

But some Berkleyans are happy to see the organization go. “There won’t be any hearts broken,” said Councilmember Betty Olds. 

The Speakers Series, part of a larger company called MPSF, Inc. which also sponsors events in San Mateo and San Rafael, is funded by 2,500 East Bay subscribers, and 4,000 subscribers total in the other two areas. The rift between the series and the city dates back to November 2000 

when the organization attempted to bring in controversial former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak at Berkeley High School’s Community Theater. 

Hundreds of protesters flooded the area, series subscribers had trouble getting into the building, and Netanyahu did not speak. 

City Councilmember Dona Spring said the series is to blame for providing inadequate private security and providing the police department with late notice of Netanyahu’s appearance. 

“They really hadn’t done the proper preparation,” she said. 

Series president Bruce Vogel acknowledged the late notice, but said the police could have done a better job of crowd control. 

“I think their policies are pro-demonstrator,” Vogel said. “I think their approach is a palm tree approach – just bend.” 

The police department referred all questions to the city manager’s office. 

Arrietta Chakos, chief of staff for City Manager Weldon Rucker, said construction on the Berkeley High School campus made it difficult to handle the crowd properly. But, she also defended the department’s handling of the situation. 

“They wanted to be sure we protected the First Amendment rights of the speaker and the demonstrators,” she said. 

Mayor Shirley Dean said Vogel’s critique of the police department was unwarranted. But, she mourned the loss of the Speakers Series, and ultimately blamed the protesters for blocking the Netanyahu speech. 

“There’s something called civic engagement,” she said. “In a community that values the exchange of ideas, you let the other guy speak.” 

Spring defended the protesters, arguing that they had acted peacefully and should not be blamed. 

Last year, tensions escalated when Vogel’s frustrations over preparations for a November 2001 speech by former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright led him to move the event from Berkeley to Oakland Paramount Theatre, in downtown Oakland, where the series will hold its entire program next season. 

According to Vogel, the speakers series meticulously planned for the Albright visit – setting up three meetings with city officials, hiring three security companies and commissioning a lawyer to lay out all the legal rights and responsibilities of the company when it came to crowd control. Vogel said the company spent $15,000 preparing for the event, when it normally spends about $1,000 for a similar engagement. 

Vogel said the City Manager’s office and police department were not helpful in coordinating security. In an October meeting, he said, the department told him that it would send officers to the event, but was prepared to pull out during the speech if something else came up. 

Vogel said police departments in other cities, by contrast, have been “eager” to lend support. 

Chakos, who sat in on one of the three meetings with Vogel, said the city was fully prepared to work with the speakers series within guidelines established by the City Council. But, she added that the department cannot be expected to dedicate too many officers to a private speaking engagement. 

“We have a city to take care of,” she said. “We can’t focus on one site.” 

“That’s probably the concern of every city we deal with,” Vogel responded. “Each of those cities, it’s a non-event.” 

In a March 27 letter to the company’s 2,500 East Bay subscribers, announcing the move to Oakland, Vogel put his concerns on paper. 

“Working with the Berkeley Police Department and the City Manager’s Office,” he wrote, “has been a hugely frustrating and unnecessarily expensive experience.” 

At least one Berkeley subscriber to the speakers series is turned off by the move. 

“I don’t plan on renewing,” said Jason Alderman, a Berkeley resident and PG&E employee. “I don’t think I want to support a series that repudiates my own town.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Getting beyond fear of change to a thriving community

Nancy Bickel
Saturday March 30, 2002

Editor: 

 

Fear of change stands like a great boulder in the path of open discussion about the development of our community. Whether we like it or not, all the statistics point to a population growth of 400,000 in Alameda and Contra Costa counties over the next 20 years. Many of these new residents are our children. Many are those who work in Berkeley schools, in health care, in shops, restaurants, theaters and in ll the other services that make our city livable. 

Where are they to find the housing they need? Will they have to commute to the Central Valley? Will they join others who are forced to the outside of the amoeba-like growth of the Bay Area, who must then jam our roads and pollute our air in order to get tow work each day? 

Over the past 30 years, Berkeley’s population had declined substantially, so the added auto congestion doesn’t result from more people living here. To a large extent, it results from people who work and go to school here but who can not find affordable housing that suits their needs. 

The League of Women Voters recently completed an intensive study of housing in Berkeley, Albany and Emeryville. On the basis of that effort, we recommend that “...the city should expand its housing stock to meet its share of the region’s growth projections, using such measures as the following: ...Identify and limit constraints on new housing construction,... review the zoning code and consider revisions that would promote production of needed housing, while maintaining health and safety standards and environmental protection.” 

After many years of study and public input, the City Council approved new Housing an Land Use Elements for its updated General Plan. It endorsed increased apartment development along transportation corridors. This is essential for adding residents while minimizing auto congestion. Additional low and moderate income housing will also increase the number of people using public transit and thus improve public transport. Yet, recently, the City Council down-zoned a group of parcels very near two transit corridors — University and San Pablo avenues — moved by objections to a proposed apartment building. Surely, the concept of increasing apartment development along transportation corridors also includes encouraging or at least permitting such development in appropriately zoned areas very close to transit corridors. 

We must ask: what did the City Council think it was adopting in the new Land Use and Housing Elements if not a set of policies to guide future land use and housing decisions throughout the city? If the Planning Commission and the City Council hear only the nay-sayers, they are undermining their own adopted policies. Those policies an those documents are meaningless, and all those years of study and public input are wasted, if they can be set aside so soon after their adoption. We urge the City Council to enforce both the letter and the spirit of the new Land Use and Housing Elements and to do so with the good of the City as a whole in mind. 

We must move beyond fear of change, capture a vision of a sensibly changing city, one in which more residents add up to a better life for all of us. A moderate expansion of housing along and near transportation corridors, and particularly of housing for people with low and moderate incomes, will also permit the city to continue to embrace residents with a wide range of economic circumstances, ages and racial and ethnic backgrounds. 

We invite fellow citizens who wish to welcome newcomers and maintain diversity to tell your own council member and the City Council as a whole that you support thoughtful growth of housing and of population in Berkeley. Don’t slam the door in the faces of our own children and all the people we rely on in our schools, homes, shops and offices. If you feel as the League of Women Voters does, you can reach us at 834-8824, by e-mail at lwvbae@pacbell.net or through our Web site: home.pacbell.net/lwvbae. 

 

 

 

Nancy Bickel, President 

Lois Brubeck,  

Action Vice President 

Jean Safir, Housing Action Chair


Broadway returns a portion of money given to help buy theater tickets

By Michael Kuchwara, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

NEW YORK — Broadway has given back a bit of what it got from the City of New York to help the theater after the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center — and the money will go to other needy arts organizations. 

This week, the League of American Theatres and Producers returned $1 million of a $2.5 million stipend given last fall by the city to purchase tickets to 11 Broadway shows that were facing the prospect of a bleak winter. 

“This is a good example of the way things should work,” league president Jed Bernstein said Monday. “The private sector (Broadway) helped itself first — then sought out the support of the city to assist in stimulating an economic recovery for the tourism industry as a whole, using Broadway as a lynchpin.” 

Those tickets purchased were given to the Twin Towers Fund and to support a special program from the city’s tourist bureau, NYC & Company, designed also to help restaurants, hotels and retail businesses hit by the tourist slump. 

Tickets were purchased to such long-running shows as “Les Miserables” and “The Phantom of the Opera” as well as newer productions such as “Proof,” “The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife” and “Contact.” 

Yet winter-season sales were better than anticipated, due to several factors including mild weather, special discounts and other promotions and an increase in theatergoers from the New York metropolitan area, up 16 percent from the previous year, Bernstein said. 

The league reported that winter grosses were off by only 5.4 percent and attendance by 9.8 percent from the previous year, which had been a record year. By the end of the winter, many of the shows in the program had had profitable weeks, resulting in the return of the money. 

The $1 million will go to a variety of service organizations including the Center for Arts Education, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the American Music Center and the Alliance of Resident Theaters/New York. 


Golden Bears win series opener against Stanford

SDaily Planet Wire Services
Saturday March 30, 2002

Forest comes out on top of aces’ duel 

 

Freshman Chelsea Spencer hit a one out double to bring in three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to give No. 8 Cal (34-10, 1-0 Pac-10) a 3-2 win over No. 3 Stanford (27-4, 0-1 Pac-10) in the teams’ conference opener Friday afternoon at Levine-Fricke Field.  

The Cardinal, who have scored at least one run in the first inning 13 of the last 14 games, wasted no time getting on the scoreboard once again as senior Jessica Mendoza hit a solo homer deep over the center field fence. Neither team made any noise for the next four innings as senior pitcher Jocelyn Forest and Stanford ace Tori Nyberg dueled in a much-hyped matchup.  

In Cal’s half of the sixth inning, junior Kristen Morley led off with a walk and senior Candace Harper singled to right field. Junior Veronica Nelson, the NCAA career walk leader with 244, was intentionally walked to load the bases. After Courtney Scott struck out swinging, Spencer’s double went under the glove of Cardinal shortstop Robin Walker and past center fielder Mendoza, all the way to the fence at left center, for RBIs No. 21, 22 and 23 for the native of San Leandro.  

Stanford threatened in the top of the seventh as Jessica Allister led off the inning with a double to right center. Junior Cassi Brangham followed with a double of her own, bringing in pinch runner Heather Shook to narrow the Bears’ lead to just one.  

From there, it was all Jocelyn Forest. The preseason All-American struck out the next three batters in order to quell the threat and end the game. She finished the contest with 12 strikeouts, five hits and just one walk as she completed her 18th game of the year.  

Nyberg, who’s only other loss of the season was to Nebraska Feb. 23, 2-0, also went the distance, striking out six batters on five hits and three base on balls.  

Morley went 2-for-2 on the afternoon, while Spencer went 1-for-2 with three RBI. The two teams square off again Saturday as Stanford hosts a doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. at the Smith Family Stadium.


Talks breaking down between workers, KSL

By Devona Walker, Daily Planet staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

The ongoing battle between Claremont Spa workers and management of the KSL Recreation corporation came to a head on Friday after months of failed negotiations and the well-intentioned interventions of both Berkeley and Oakland’s city councils. 

Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Union, Local 2850, AFL-CIO and Claremont Spa workers launched “KSLwatch.org Web site and held an Easter Bunny demonstration on Friday outside the Claremont Resort and Spa, on Ashby at Claremont Ave. in Oakland.  

 

After Friday’s protest the two appeared to be no closer to reaching an agreement on whether spa workers will be able to vote on unionization by card check or by a standard vote, which spa workers and union representatives say is a process that allows for an environment of corporate intimidation. 

“It seems pretty clear to me that KSL does not plan on allowing for a card check,” said Oakland Vice Mayor Jane Brunner. “And I know from past experience that it is very difficult for an individual to negotiate with a corporation like KSL.”  

Brunner, in addition to serving on the Oakland City Council is also a labor attorney in the city, and coincidentally happened to represent a group of Claremont workers in a civil suit against management several years ago. Shortly after Claremont was originally purchased by the KSL Recreation Corp. several workers, many older than 50 years of age were fired. Brunner represented those workers in an age discrimination suit against KSL. The workers were awarded punitive damages but in most cases were not allowed to return to work. 

On Feb. 5, the Berkeley City Council passed a resolution supporting Claremont Spa workers efforts to unionize with a union card check as opposed to going through the process of a vote-in procedure. Since then, two of the four workers allegedly laid off due to their efforts to unionize have actually been allowed to return to work. On Tuesday, March 23 Oakland’s council passed a similar resolution — reaffirming the union’s claim that a card check method would help insure that workers are not intimidated and discouraged from joining the union that already represents the majority of the staff at Claremont. 

According to Liz Oakley, a union representative for Local 2850, there was great hopes that this move would be the straw that broke the camel’s back considering that Claremont is actually located in Oakland. This is not, however, Oakland’s first effort to intervene at Claremont. Brunner has approximately 800 names and addresses of people who live around Claremont and “most likely use their services” and keeps them abreast of the ensuing negotiations between management and workers. 

“We have political power, that’s all,” Brunner said, adding that the city of Oakland, or Berkeley for that matter, cannot force the hand of KSL. “But many of the people who live around there are people who would go to the Spa. But they are also very progressive. We have politically conscious community members in Berkeley and here in Oakland, and we will continue to keep them aware of the manner that KSL treats their workers.” 

But other than political pressure Brunner and Berkeley Mayor Shirley Dean both concede there is nothing that either city can do to further the cause of spa workers 

Stephanie Ruby, Local 2850, said that despite the limitations of powers that the two cities have their interventions have been helping the cause. 

“Since Berkeley passed its resolution two workers have been asked to return to work. So it does help. And we think it’s just tremendous that Oakland has chosen unanimously to support us as well.” 

But the last week has not proven to be fruitful for either sides. 

In response to the Oakland resolution, KSL released a statement contesting the legality of the resolution passed by Council.  

At Friday’s protest, unlike demonstration’s in the past, KSL management refused to comment on the ongoing negotiations and would not confirm or deny whether communications have entirely broken down. 

Leslie Fitzgerald, a massage therapist at Claremont Resort for nearly eight years was suspended from work along with three other co-workers for handing out leaflets to Claremont hotel guests. The leaflets informed hotel guests about the working conditions for spa workers and their efforts to union organize, according to Ruby. But statements released by KSL have stated that the leaflets contained “union propaganda,” according to a KSL spokes person.  

At this point, as Local 2850 takes an even more aggressive stance with launching a full-service Web site capable of disseminating information to a much broader audience then hotel guest or the 800 neighbors living around the spa, KSL remains silent. They still, however, contend they will not allow card-check to replace a vote-in procedure, and the two remaining workers suspended for alleged union organizing have not been called back to work. 

“They are the outsider in all this,” Ruby said. “The community is clearly saying: ‘You can’t pay people poverty wages. You can’t walk all over other people’s rights to free speech and right to organize.’ ” 

At this point negotiations would seemingly have to get better to avoid a full-scale strike, said Brunner, adding that she has no inside knowledge on what the union’s or management’s intentions are. 

“I have worked with them in the past, and I know how they operate. I think if they were interested in having a card check it would have happened. The people who are making the decisions for KSL are not here and are not necessarily being inconvenienced,” Brunner said, adding that she does not know how long it will take, from past experience, for management to begin to feel the heat. 

“This is the exact reason that unions are so important to the individual because it’s only a beginning when it comes to leveling the playing field,” she added. But Brunner said she hopes everyone thinks long and hard before making any decisions on a strike because of the added risk it will pose for the employees and their families. 


‘Fight Club’ director is ‘pleased with himself’ for ‘Panic Room’

By Christy LeMire, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

David Fincher is entirely too pleased with himself. 

The director who made his name with stylish, seemingly endless tracking shots in “Fight Club” is at it again with “Panic Room.” The camera careens effortlessly through windows and stair banisters, across countertops, and inside garden hoses and light bulbs. 

Fincher probably should have eased up on the technique just a tad; he uses it so many times, he’s clearly just showing off. But the breathtaking visuals are just enough to distract from the flawed script from David Koepp (“Mission: Impossible,” “Stir of Echoes”). It begins with a weak premise and collapses into an unbelievably ridiculous series of twists. 

Having said that, the virtuoso camerawork makes “Panic Room” worth seeing, as does Jodie Foster’s characteristically confident, controlled performance. 

Foster — who took the role after Nicole Kidman got injured — stars as Meg Altman, who’s recently divorced from her wealthy husband. Meg must’ve gotten a huge settlement, because she and her daughter, Sarah (Kristen Stewart), can afford to move into a 4,200-square-foot, four-story brownstone on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, just steps from Central Park. 

The place has six fireplaces, hardwood floors throughout, an elevator, and — we’re told ominously — a panic room, an impenetrable chamber off the master bedroom for hiding in case of a burglary. 

Who knew panic rooms even existed? Are they just for the rich? Or Dick Cheney? Except at the White House, they call it the Situation Room. (The film’s production notes say panic rooms are a variation of a castle keep, a bomb or storm shelter — and the White House Situation Room.) 

Meg and Sarah find they need the room sooner than they think — too soon, really; we should have been lulled a little longer into the contentment of their new life. Three bad guys break in on their first night there. 

Junior (Jared Leto), Burnham (Forest Whitaker) and Raoul (Dwight Yoakam) show up to steal millions of dollars they believe the previous owner stashed in the hidden room. 

Meg spies on them through surveillance cameras that are mounted throughout the home, then rouses her sleeping daughter, and the two scurry into the room just in time. It’s a given that they’ll make it inside — that’s the whole point of the movie — but the sequence in which the bad guys chase them in there is shot and edited so flawlessly, it’s suspenseful anyway. 

The rest of the movie consists of Meg and the burglars trying to outsmart each other, with a wall of steel and stone between them. Impetuous Junior wants to bust his way into the room using a sledgehammer. Quiet Raoul wants to gas them out with a propane tank and a garden hose. But Burnham — the criminal with a heart of gold — wants to talk them out peacefully. 

We don’t know much about Meg’s background — like what she does for a living, for example — but somehow, inside the tiny room that initially paralyzes her with claustrophobia, she cultivates a MacGyver-esque resourcefulness than enables her to counter their every attack. 

Although we’re asked to suspend disbelief, we always know in the back of our minds that Meg and Sarah will get out alive; if they didn’t, it would be an independent film. 

And when they do, they’re forced to fight for their lives in an unnecessarily violent attack that’s too cartoonish to be climactic. 

“Panic Room,” a Columbia Pictures release, is rated R for violence and language. Running time: 110 minutes. Two and a half stars (out of four).


Grand jurd finds county morgue substandard

By Jia-Rui Chong, Daily Planet staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

Oakland facility criticized for lack of space, parking, disabled access, poor ventilation  

The Alameda County morgue in Oakland is “shockingly unsatisfactory and in serious crisis,” according to a report issued Tuesday by an Alameda grand jury.  

This is the second year in a row a grand jury has criticized the facility for being substandard, antiquated and overcrowded. 

Specifically criticized were the lack of access for disabled people, inadequate parking, limited movement for employees and visitors because of narrow staircases, poor ventilation, body-receiving docks in open view, lack of private interview space for family members and lack of space in the event of a mass casualty disaster. 

The report suggested that the coroner’s office be relocated or else use portable buildings in the parking lost east of the present building.  

Lt. Cynthia Harris, Berkeley Police Department spokesperson, said the BPD has not had any problems with the coroner’s office, though they deal with the office all the time. 

“Our relationship with them is fine. I haven’t heard any complaints from homicide,” said Harris. 

But Lt. Jim Knudsen, spokesperson for the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, which oversees the coroner’s office, said that Sheriff Charles Plummer is aware of the problem. 

“The sheriff is very concerned. He has said repeatedly it needs to be replaced,” Knudsen said. 

Staff in the Sheriff’s Office are currently analyzing the report to see what can be done. 

Knudsen said that he already knows some of the suggestions that the Grand Jury made are not practical. 

“Putting a portable building in the parking lot takes parking and storage from other facilities. That puts a burden on those other facilities,” said Knudsen. 

Renting other space may not be practical either, he added. 

“There are special autopsy tables that we use that are hard to move. We could get new ones for the interim, but that might not be the best value for the tax dollar,” said Knudsen. 

The Grand Jury’s report called for immediate action, but a solution will probably not happen any time soon. 

Supervisor Keith Carson, who chairs the budget committee, said that the county is currently strapped for cash. The state’s $18 billion deficit means that the county’s budget will likely be even tighter this year. 

“The coroner’s office does need a new office. Nobody’s saying it doesn’t, but we have to evaluate the capital needs of the county,” said Carson. 

In addition to the need for facilities such as a new public hospital and Juvenile Hall, Carson said the county must also consider how to maintain the social services currently available. 

Although the amount of available funds has gone down, said Carson, “What hasn’t gone down is the number of people using county services. That’s actually gone up. The number of people needing health insurance, unemployment – all of these people use the county safety net.” 

That is, the sheriff’s facility is one building on a list of concerns for the county, and it isn’t at the top. 

But Knudsen hopes that the problem can be solved in the not-too-distant future. He said the Sheriff’s Office is hopeful that a new facility in San Leandro can be built in a couple of years.


New translation hopes to show ‘Kamasutra’ in new light

By Jill Lawless, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

LONDON — More than 1,700 years after it was completed by an enigmatic Indian scribe, the “Kamasutra” is among the most famous Hindu books ever written — and, many believe, the most misunderstood. 

Most who have encountered the book recall it as a do-it-yourself sex manual, an eye-opening encyclopedia of acrobatic positions. 

Academics hope a frank new translation will help the “Kamasutra” — which means “a treatise on desire” — shake its saucy reputation and regain its status as a literary classic. 

“It’s by far the most complete and interesting work about sexual psychology that has been written — a cross between ‘The Joy of Sex’ and ‘Lady Chatterly’s Lover,”’ said Wendy Doniger, who translated the book from the original Sanskrit with psychoanalyst Sudhir Kakar. 

“The great misconception is that it is about the positions, which is the silliest part of the book, and a very short part of the book,” she added. 

“Kamasutra” was released today in Britain and Oxford University Press will hit bookstores in the United States in June. 

Written probably in 3rd-century Northern India by Vatsyayana Mallanaga, “Kamasutra” catalogs sexual positions, enumerates the varieties of kissing and expounds on the amorous role of scratching and biting. 

But it also tells readers how to flirt, conduct a lovers’ quarrel, seduce someone else’s spouse and blend potions to stimulate a sagging libido. 

It even advises a woman on ways to dump an unwanted lover: “She talks about things he does not know about. She shows no amazement, but only contempt, for the things he does know about. She punctures his pride.” 

With its aphoristic advice on attracting, satisfying, keeping and shedding a partner, the book is often more “Sex in the City” than sex manual. 

“It is always said to be a book about man’s manipulation of women, but a great deal of it is about women’s manipulation of men,” Doniger says. “It’s really about power, politics and sex.” 

Doniger, who teaches the history of religion at the University of Chicago, says the “Kamasutra” has been ill-served by its best-known English translation, completed in 1883 by British writer-explorer Sir Richard Burton. 

Doniger says Burton’s language is “Victorian and flowery,” while the original Sanskrit is direct and robust. 

“The Kamasutra is punchy, Hemingwayesque — ’he touches her here, she bites him there,”’ Doniger said. 

“Burton uses the Hindu words ‘lingam’ and ’yoni’ to refer to the sexual organs. These words are not in the original text. ... Burton takes all the ambiguity out, and makes it sound like some weird ‘Orientalist’ thing, whereas the book is about us.” 

The new Oxford Classics edition is noticeably more direct than its Victorian predecessor. What Burton calls “supported congress,” the new book terms “sex standing up.” 

The two editions agree, however, on the “lotus” position and the gymnastic embrace called “splitting the bamboo.” 

That kind of exotic eroticism has made “Kamasutra” the bane of generations of parents and teachers, and the book remains controversial. Indian-born director Mira Nair’s 1996 film, “Kamasutra — a Tale of Love,” loosely based on the book, was stalled for more than a year by Indian censors before finally being screened. 

Doniger says the book’s reputation has obscured its value as a work of literature. She says it can be read as a play in seven acts, following its male and female protagonists from seduction through separation, and as an idealized portrait of a sophisticated, monied society. 

“No one in this book ever goes to the shop, no one ever goes to see his mother. All you do all day is plan for the night and get ready for it,” she said. “Its like a Playboy Mansion life. 

“Training parrots and mynah birds to talk and going to cockfights, what sort of food and liquor to serve at a party — the life of pleasure is beautifully evoked. But a lot of it is about men and women in ways that have not changed. 

“It’s an enormously complicated book on the psychology of sex, the psychology of erotic arousal.” 

And those illustrations — they were added much later. 

“They’re an afterthought,” Doniger said. “A very famous afterthought.”


Today in History

Staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

Saturday, March 30th is the 89th day of 2002. There are 276 days left in the year. 

 

Highlight in History: 

On March 30, 1981, President Reagan was shot and seriously injured outside a Washington, D.C., hotel by John W. Hinckley Jr. Also wounded were White House press secretary James Brady, a Secret Service agent and a District of Columbia police officer. 

 

On this date: 

In 1822, Florida became a U.S. territory. 

In 1842, Dr. Crawford W. Long of Jefferson, Ga., first used ether as an anesthetic during a minor operation. 

In 1867, U.S. Secretary of State William H. Seward reached agreement with Russia to purchase the territory of Alaska for $7.2 million, a deal roundly ridiculed as “Seward’s Folly.” 

In 1870, the 15th amendment to the Constitution, giving black men the right to vote, was declared in effect. 

In 1870, Texas was readmitted to the Union. 

In 1945, the Soviet Union invaded Austria during World War II. 

In 1964, John Glenn withdrew from the Ohio race for U.S. Senate because of injuries suffered in a fall. 

In 1970, the musical “Applause” opened on Broadway. 

In 1973, Ellsworth Bunker resigned as U.S. ambassador to South Vietnam, and was succeeded by Graham A. Martin. 

In 1986, actor James Cagney died at his farm in Stanfordville, N.Y., at age 86. 

Ten years ago: “The Silence of the Lambs” won five top Oscars at the 64th annual Academy Awards, including best picture, best actress for Jodie Foster and best actor for Anthony Hopkins. 

Five years ago: The reigning champion Lady Vols of Tennessee won their fifth NCAA women’s basketball title by defeating Old Dominion, 68-59. 

One year ago: Top environment officials from North, Central and South America ended two days of talks in Montreal without a consensus agreement on global warming. (A statement signed by 26 ministers from Latin American and Caribbean countries faulted a decision by the United States to reject the 1997 Kyoto Protocol.) 

 

Today’s Birthdays: Singer Frankie Laine is 89. Former CIA Director Richard Helms is 89. Actor Richard Dysart is 73. Actor John Astin is 72. Game show host Peter Marshall is 72. Actor-director Warren Beatty is 65. Rock musician Graeme Edge (The Moody Blues) is 61. Rock musician Eric Clapton is 57. Actor Robbie Coltrane is 52. Actor Paul Reiser is 45. Rap artist MC Hammer is 39. Singer Tracy Chapman is 38. Actor Ian Ziering is 38. Singer Celine Dion is 34. Singer-musician Scott Moffatt (The Moffatts) is 19. 


Joe Joe Rawlings: a new literary hero for kids

By Alexandra R. Moses, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

DETROIT — Her young son stood in the department store, hands stuffed in his pockets. He was just 9 years old, but Jean Alicia Elster feared that because of the color of his skin, and the way he was standing, people would think her son was stealing. 

“I felt bad because I kind of had to break his childhood bubble. But at a certain point, young, African-American males are no longer viewed as cute little boys ... they’re viewed as potential thieves,” Elster said. 

It was this experience that inspired the plot for her first published children’s book, “Just Call Me Joe Joe.” 

The book, geared toward black, urban children ages 6-10, is the first in a series about 10-year-old Joe Joe Rawlings. It came out in October. 

In it, Joe Joe is accused by Mr. Booth, a white storeowner, of trashing his store, when it was really a local gang that did it. Joe Joe is crushed that Mr. Booth would confuse him with gang members: 

“Joe Joe looked up in shock. It was Mr. Booth yelling at him. His face was red, and his eyes were bulging with anger. He shouted at Joe Joe again. ‘I said, get out!”’ 

Elster said she wanted to address racial stereotyping because it is an experience that not only black parents have to battle, but Hispanic and Arab American parents as well. She also hopes that white parents use the book to help their children understand that “life isn’t always fair and they may view certain people of color in a certain way that’s not fair.” 

The 48-year-old author lives in Detroit with her husband, William, and their two children: Elizabeth, 14, and Isaac, 12. Elster uses Negro League star James “Cool Papa” Bell, to inspire Joe Joe to work things out with the storeowner. Joe Joe reads about Bell in a book recommended by librarian Mrs. Morgan. 

Bell’s story teaches the child that even though he is treated unfairly because of his race, it doesn’t change who he is. 

At the start of each story in the series, Mrs. Morgan will give Joe Joe a new book about a figure in black history. Later topics will include the Tuskegee Airmen and Ralph Bunche, the American diplomat who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950. 

Doreen Loury, a professor of sociology at Arcadia University in Glenside, Pa., said it is encouraging to see books written for black children, “so that young people, when they hear the book and when they see the images in the book, they see themselves.” 

She said that helps black children gain a sense of identity and self-confidence. 

“People don’t have to do what I had to do in the ’60s and search for stuff,” Loury said. She said when her now-grown daughter was young, she drove miles to find toys and books specifically for black children. 

“There’s nothing wrong with looking at all kinds of literature, but when all you’re looking at is Dick and Jane, and Dick and Jane didn’t get an African-American neighbor until the ’70s,” it is limiting, Loury said. 

Kathleen Odean, children’s editor at Book magazine, said there are numerous books geared toward black children coming out now. But she said because children’s books have such staying power, the recent boon isn’t enough. 

“For so many years, nobody was doing books about black kids. And in that sense there’s a ways to go,” she said. 

Elster said it is important for children today to have positive characters in books, especially if they don’t have a lot of role models in their lives. 

When she was young, she was fortunate to have many good influences around her. Her parents were educators, and many of her neighbors were professionals. “Everyone around me was African American and very successful at what they did,” said Elster, who knew when she was 6 years old that she wanted to be a writer. 

“I would write in this little notebook. And I just remember thinking to myself, ‘This is what I want to do. I just want to write.’ I was just this little kid. I knew that this was my calling,” she said. 

Her love for words is partly influenced by her grandmother, whom she used to watch write letters using an inkwell and a fountain pen. 

But after graduating from the University of Michigan with an English degree, Elster strayed a bit from writing: She went to law school at the University of Detroit and practiced law for about five years. 

“It was strictly a financial decision. ... I thought, ‘Well, I can practice law and write on the side,”’ she said. “I still pay my bar dues. It’s like my insurance.” 

Then, she and her husband, a historian at Wayne State University, started a family, and Elster left work to raise the children. In the early 1990s, she got back to her first love, writing an essay for World Vision, and then for Ms. magazine. She began writing and editing full time in 1994. 

Judson Press, the publishing arm of the American Baptist Churches in the USA, knew her from the work she did editing two books for the publisher, and asked her to submit an idea for a children’s story about an urban black boy. She submitted four ideas. 

James A. Cox, editor in chief of Midwest Book Review, called Elster an excellent writer. 

“Basically, the hook was right where it should be, right up front. ... She managed to keep a high interest level from first page to last,” Cox said. 

In a review, Cox said the book was a “highly recommended and strong story of moral conviction and justice for young readers.” 

Mark Wiragh, Judson Press marketing manager, said it was the first time the publisher has done a black children’s book. 

“It’s exceeded our expectations,” Wiragh said. He said 10,000 copies have sold and the book is now in a second printing. 

The Joe Joe series will be four books in all. The next one, “I Have a Dream, Too!,” is due out in April. The third installment comes out in October, and the fourth will be published in April 2003. 

Elster hopes to continue the Joe Joe series, with books for a slightly older audience. She also is working on a novel for adults. 

——— 

On the Net: 

Judson Press, http://www.judsonpress.com 

End Adv for March 7-10 and Thereafter 


Oakland police cracks down on car sideshows

Staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

OAKLAND — The Oakland police department plans to put extra officer on the streets this weekend to crack down on “sideshows,” loosely organized events where fast cars spin doughnuts in parking lots as young onlookers stand dangerously nearby. 

The extra police officers are part of a new mandatory overtime program initiated to prevent the dangerous, late night activity. the overnight hours. Sixty-five officers will focus on finding and stopping sideshows Saturday night. Oakland Police Lieutenant Mike Yoell said the department would put officers in strategic locations throughout the city and have them citing and towing “as many violators possible.” 

A 22-year-old woman died in February when the car she was riding in was broadsided by a Buick that moments before had been spinning “doughnuts,” police said. Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown said he wants the state to enact emergency laws giving police the power to impound any car involved in sideshows. 


Lindh treated the same as U.S. soldiers, government says

By Larry Margasak, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

WASHINGTON — American-born Taliban John Walker Lindh received the same food and medical care as U.S. soldiers while in custody in Afghanistan, and even slept on a stretcher while his physician made do on a concrete floor, U.S. prosecutors said Friday. 

The government’s written court filing responded to repeated claims by Lindh’s lawyers that their client was all but tortured while in U.S. military custody. 

The defense had argued that incriminating statements Lindh made to interrogators should be thrown out, in part because he was interviewed after being confined in a freezing metal container, bound with circulation-cutting handcuffs and blindfolded. 

The government did acknowledge that conditions in a U.S. military camp in Afghanistan weren’t ideal for anyone. 

However, the United States “had not plucked John Walker Lindh out of the California suburb where he used to live and dropped him into a metal container in the middle of Afghanistan,” the court filing said. 

Lindh entered that country, sought out training at an al-Qaida camp in Afghanistan, learned to use shoulder-fired weapons and grenades and swore allegiance to jihad, or holy war, it said. 

Lindh, 21, of a Marin County suburb just north of San Francisco, is charged with conspiracy to murder U.S. nationals, providing support and services to foreign terrorist organizations and using firearms and destructive devices during crimes of violence. Three of the 10 charges carry a maximum life sentence, and the other seven have maximum prison terms of 90 years. 

Wounded in the leg, Lindh was given “the very same medical treatment provided to wounded United States military personnel,” the filing said. He was fed with the same Meals Ready To Eat as U.S. forces, in the same quantities, and was given warm comforters. 

“While the Navy physician who was treating him had to sleep on a concrete floor in a sleeping bag in a room with a hole in the wall and a hole in the ceiling, Lindh slept on a stretcher in a container that protected him from the elements,” the filing said. 

After he was taken aboard a U.S. military ship, Lindh had a bullet removed by a senior surgeon, received a second haircut when he complained about an earlier one, had his mustache trimmed and was advised of the direction of Mecca so he could say his Muslim prayers, the government contended. 

U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III has scheduled a hearing on the defense document requests Monday. The case is in Alexandria, Va., and the filing was released in Washington by the Justice Department. 


Palestinian refugee charged with assaulting an INS agent

By Chelsea J. Carter The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

ANAHEIM — A Palestinian refugee who gained national attention three years ago for his hunger strike protesting INS treatment has been charged with assaulting a federal immigration agent. 

A complaint filed this week alleges that Mohammad Mahmoud Bachir, 43, kicked an agent, screamed he was a terrorist and threatened to bring down the airplane when agents tried to move him from California to New York on a commercial flight. 

Bachir denied the allegations, telling The Associated Press it was Immigration and Naturalization Service agents who assaulted him. 

“I would never say this. There is no sane person who would say this after Sept. 11,” he said Friday in a telephone interview from Kern County Jail where he was placed earlier this week. He is scheduled to be arraigned April 15. 

INS officials did not immediately return a call for comment. 

The assault allegation is the latest in a string of clashes between the INS and the former Anaheim tax accountant dating back to the mid-1990s. 

Bachir’s problems began with a custody dispute with his ex-wife that resulted in his being charged with abduction for taking the couple’s son to Lebanon. The child was eventually returned and Bachir served a two-year sentence. 

The INS sought to deport Bachir, who was born in a Lebanese refugee camp, but court records show Lebanon refused to accept him and he was listed as stateless. 

Meanwhile, Bachir protested his detention with hunger strikes, in numerous media interviews and through the filing of human rights complaints against INS officials. 

In 1999, he helped lead 16 detainees in a hunger strike at Hillsborough County Jail in Manchester, N.H. The group alleged they were physically and verbally abused at the jail, which also was used as an INS detention center. 

Bachir was released from custody in April after a federal judge ruled the INS could not hold immigrants indefinitely. He was detained again in early February for failing to check in with authorities and for violating a restraining order by placing a call to his ex-wife. 

Bachir said he was in constant contact with the INS but missed an in-person appointment because he was being treated at Anaheim General Hospital for a kidney infection. The hospital would not confirm or deny his story, citing patient confidentiality. 

Bachir and his supporters believe his most recent detention stems from animosity over authorities being ordered to release him last year. 

“He has a history of agitating against the INS,” said Mac Scott of the Coalition of Human Rights for Immigrants. “He’s embarrassed the INS with his actions. I think they have carried a grudge against him ever since.” 

Federal authorities have denied any efforts at retaliation. 

“He’s violated a couple of conditions of his release,” David Venturella, a top INS administrator, told The Orange County Register. “Any one of them would have been good enough for us to arrest him.” 

Venturella said Bachir’s penchant for disruptive protests was one of the reason INS officials wanted to move him from Southern California to a more secure facility in Buffalo, N.Y. 

The latest complaint charges Bachir with kicking the INS officer during a scuffle when agents tried to put him on a Northwest flight at Los Angeles International Airport. 

According to the complaint, Bachir kicked the agent and screamed, “I’m a terrorist and I’m going to blow up this plane,” prompting Northwest employees to ask that he be removed from the flight. 

Bachir said his hands and feet were shackled and that agents injured him when they dragged him onto the plane. He acknowledged he didn’t want to be moved to New York because his son and other family members are in Orange County. 

“I wanted to be near my family. I told them this,” he said. 


LA police receiving allegations of long-ago clergy abuse

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Publicity about sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests has prompted 20 to 30 calls to police from people who claim they were victimized years or decades ago, authorities said Friday. 

“We’re not getting any information that there are any children that are currently being physically or sexually abused,” said Lt. Daniel Mulrenin, head of the Police Department Juvenile Division’s sexually exploited child unit. 

“We’re getting calls from adults, 30 or 40 years old, saying they were ... abused as children,” he said. 

The calls are being reviewed and some may prompt formal investigations, he said, noting that there could still be charges filed even in old cases. 

The handling of clergy sexual abuse cases by the U.S. Catholic church has come under renewed scrutiny since January, when it was revealed that a former Boston priest had been moved from parish to parish after accusations of sexual abuse. 

As for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, “we have a very good relationship with them,” Mulrenin said. “We want to maintain that and they’ve indicated that they’re going to fully cooperate.” 

Cardinal Roger Mahony, head of the archdiocese, has said some priests recently were dismissed, some for abuse that occurred decades ago. But he has not said how many priests were dismissed and he has not released their names. 

Mahony has not commented on a Los Angeles Times report that the dismissals involved six to 12 priests. 

The report led Police Chief Bernard Parks to send Mahony a letter asking for the names of the dismissed priests. In correspondence released Thursday, Mahony told Parks that those cases which occurred in Los Angeles police jurisdiction were reported there and those priests were prosecuted and served probation many years ago. 

“These cases are a matter of public record and known to your detectives,” the cardinal wrote. 

The issue of the dismissed priests’ identities became unclear late Thursday when the Police Department issued a press release that noted the reports of the dismissals and said detectives had met with the archdiocesan legal adviser on Wednesday. 

“Detectives were given names of priests and are currently checking department records,” the press release said. 

On Friday, an archdiocesan spokesman and a police official said that the names of the dismissed priests were not involved. 

“The discussions (Wednesday) did not involve turning over the names of the recently released priests because the LAPD detectives acknowledge that they already have them,” said archdiocesan spokesman Tod Tamberg. 

Police Cmdr. Gary Brennand said the archdiocese turned over names of priests who have only recently been accused of long-ago molestation by people calling a special church hotline. 

Police will review those names to determine whether the priests were previously accused or convicted of abusing other victims, he said. 

“We don’t know how many priests the diocese has dismissed,” he said. “We don’t know how many that they have dismissed are within our jurisdiction. We have been given names by the diocese of priests who have just recently come to their attention and just recently been accused of abuse, but the accusations are for incidents that occurred years ago.” 


Earthquake rattles Baja California

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

CALEXICO — An earthquake rattled Baja California early Wednesday, but there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage. 

The magnitude-3.1 quake struck just before 6:02 p.m. about 19 miles southeast of Calexico, near the U.S.-Mexico border, according to a preliminary report from the U.S. Geological Survey. 

The quake apparently was related to a magnitude-5.7 quake that rattled Calexico on Feb. 22 but it was not immediately clear whether it was a direct aftershock, said Kate Hutton, a seismologist at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. 

A magnitude-4.7 quake was reported in Baja California on Wednesday, which followed a magnitude-4.4 quake on Tuesday. 

Also Tuesday, a magnitude-3.0 temblor hit an area about 12 miles north-northwest of Calexico. 


Jack rabbits attack walkers in Sonoma County, man bitten

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

SANTA ROSA — Sonoma County musician Doug Bowes will remember this Easter season as the one where he happened upon the Easter Bunny, and it attacked him. 

Bowes was walking near his home at about 11 a.m. Wednesday when the attack occurred. A small, gray jack rabbit bounded toward him from a nearby fence. 

“I thought, ’Gosh, this is somebody’s pet,’ ” Bowes said. He put his hand down in a friendly gesture and the bunny lunged and bit him. 

Bowes began to walk home, nursing a sore hand with broken skin, but the rabbit followed him. A short time later, a nearby neighbor had to retreat up a hill after another aggressive jack rabbit forced her back. 

Bowes had to get rabies shots and faces five additional vaccinations, though area health officials say it would be rare if the animal had rabies. 

“If it were (rabid) it would make history,” said David Yong, director of laboratory services for the county public health division. No rabbit has tested positive for rabies in Sonoma County in the past 16 years, Yang said.


Audit shows school bus safety program’s costs $67 million each year

By Don Thompson, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A school bus safety program projected to cost no more than $1 million each year is instead costing California $67 million annually, according to a new audit. 

Through this year, schools will have claimed $290 million since the program’s inception — 48 times its expected cost. 

The cost is so much higher than anticipated that legislators passed a new law last year halting any reimbursements to local school districts until the state audit was completed Thursday. 

The Legislature had expected annual costs wouldn’t top $1 million a year when it adopted new school bus safety rules between 1994 and 1997 in response to a fatal accident involving a student who was crossing the street after a school bus dropped him off. 

Even the revised estimate is questionable because schools varied greatly in claiming reimbursement from the state, based mainly on which private consulting firm they employed, state auditors found. 

Four of the six consultants reviewed by the auditors were conservative in their reimbursement recommendations. Their highest claim was for $41,155, or $14.72 per bus rider. A fifth was much higher only because of a unique condition related to a single school district that skewed the results. 

The sixth consultant, however, was the adviser for 78 percent of the 787 reimbursement claims filed for the 1999-2000 school year. Claims filed with the advice of Rancho Cordova-based Mandated Cost Systems Inc. accounted for $58 million of the $59 million sought by school districts statewide that year. 

Mandated Cost Systems “took a more aggressive approach,” seeking reimbursement for all associated transportation costs, State Auditor Elaine Howle said — including those its client districts were incurring before the new state safety mandate. 

One client, Elk Grove Unified School District near Sacramento, claimed $1.8 million from the state — or $198.84 per rider, 13 times higher than the per-rider claim by the next highest representative district. Mandated Cost System’s per-rider cost for all its client districts averaged $97.91. 

Auditors also found most school districts they sampled lacked sufficient data to back up their reimbursement claims. 

Yet Howle blamed neither the consultant nor the school districts for the unexpectedly high reimbursement claims. 

Rather, she blamed the state’s Commission on State Mandates for failing to set clear reimbursement guidelines. That, she said, opened the door for broad interpretations both in what districts claim and in how they document their claims. 

The commission specifically “chose to use the ’broadest, most comprehensive’ language it could to ensure that large and small school districts would be covered for any activities they have in their transportation safety plans,” Howle said. 

Problems caused by the lack of clarity were aggravated because the commission had delays totaling more than 14 months before it decided in 1997 that school districts’ compliance costs were reimbursable by the state, she said. 

Commission Executive Director Paula Higashi said in her response that commissioners act as a quasi-judicial body and can only consider evidence and testimony put before them. In this case, state agencies never complained about the commission’s guidelines, so the commission never considered making them clearer. 

However, Howle noted the commission failed to ask the California Department of Education for its opinion “because of an oversight by commission staff.” Commission officials declined to comment Friday beyond their written response. 

Mandated Cost Systems’ owner Steve Smith said his lawyers were the only ones to ask questions during the commission’s hearings. 

“We could kind of see this coming three years ago,” Smith said. “Essentially, they confirmed our interpretation was consistent with what they anticipated.” 

Smith said most school districts resigned themselves to not being paid their full claims by the state once they saw that claims were far exceeding legislators’ expectations. 

Howle concluded lawmakers should enact yet another law, this one setting out reimbursement guidelines in line with what legislators originally intended the state to pay when they first enacted the safety laws between 1994 and 1997. 

The commission — made up of the elected state controller, treasurer and five governor’s appointees — agreed. 


Bush administration moves to repudiate biologists’ Alaska report

By John Heilprin, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

WASHINGTON — The Bush administration acted Friday to repudiate a report by government biologists that concluded drilling for oil in an Alaskan wildlife refuge would pose substantial risks to the Porcupine caribou herd and other wildlife. 

Charles Groat, director of the U.S. Geological Survey, which issued the report, wrote Interior Secretary Gale Norton that he was asking scientists to re-evaluate their conclusions using drilling plans the administration contends would be less damaging to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. 

“We’re not looking at what the USGS studied,” said White House spokesman Gordon Johndroe, who was with President Bush in Texas on Friday. “We are talking about exploring a very small part of ANWR.” 

Groat told Norton he ordered biologists to report back within 10 days on what drilling proponents say is a scaled-back scenario from those studied by the Geological Survey’s office in the Interior Department. 

Interior officials also pointed to the report’s conclusions that risks to wildlife — including musk oxen, polar bears and migrating birds — could be reduced by restricting and closely managing oil exploration and production. 

“The report bolsters the administration’s mandate that ANWR production must require the most stringent environmental protections ever imposed. It demonstrates that with new technology, tough regulations and common sense management, we can protect wildlife and produce energy,” said department spokesman Mark Pfeifle. 

In their report Friday, the biologists make no recommendation whether the refuge should be developed, but they said the region’s wildlife are vulnerable to disturbances like those from oil drilling. 

The Porcupine caribou herd, which uses the coastal plain for calving each summer, “may be particularly sensitive to development” because it has little quality habitat elsewhere, and the survival of calves is linked to the animals’ ability to move freely, the report said. 

Groat acknowledged that adverse risks to the Porcupine caribou “would depend on the type of development and where the development occurred.” 

The 78-page report is based on an examination of 12 years of research into wildlife activities and the ecology of the Arctic refuge’s 1.5 million-acre coastal plain, which may contain about 11.4 billion barrels of oil.  

Preparing for exploitation of the reserves would take 10 years. 

Ending Congress’ long-standing ban on oil exploration in the wildlife refuge was a major plank in both Bush’s presidential campaign in 2000 and his administration’s energy plan announced a year ago. 

The Republican-controlled House voted last year to allow drilling in the Alaska refuge. Supporters have been reluctant to bring it up in the Senate, but a Senate vote could come as early as the second week of April. 

“Once again the administration has released a report undermining its own case,” said Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-Conn. He said the findings confirm “the environmental destruction that would occur” if oil drilling is allowed in the refuge. 

Carl Pope, executive director of the Sierra Club, said every time biologists study drilling in the refuge, they find it would have a serious impact on wildlife. 

“There’s no new scenario in the (House) bill,” Pope said. “The entire area would be open for drilling. The new science still does not enable you to develop the refuge without destroying its habitat.” 

As with the case of the caribou, the study found that development of the refuge’s coastal plain may pose risks to other wildlife: 

—Musk oxen were described as particularly “vulnerable to disturbances” from oil and gas exploration because they live in the region year-round, including winter when oil exploration would be most intense. 

—Snow geese, among millions of migratory birds on the coastal plain, could be displaced because of increased activity. It cannot be assumed the geese would find adequate feeding areas elsewhere, the study said. 

—Denning polar bears also might be adversely affected, the assessment said. It said, however, that “aggressive and proactive management” could minimize or even eliminate most of the problem. 

——— 

On the Net: 

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: http://www.r7.fws.gov/nwr/arctic/arctic.html 

Arctic Power: http://www.anwr.org/ 

Alaska Wilderness League: http://www.alaskawild.org/ 

Energy Department map of area: http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/reps/states/maps/ak.html 

USGS report: http://alaska.usgs.gov/BSR-2002/usgs-brd-bsr-2002-001.html 


FBI to turn over findings in 1975 disappearance of Jimmy Hoffa to local prosecutors

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

DETROIT — The FBI said Friday it will refer its findings in the nearly 27-year-old disappearance of former Teamsters President James R. Hoffa to local prosecutors for possible state charges. 

No federal charges will be filed for now, though they may if more information is uncovered, said Special Agent Dawn Clenney of the FBI’s Detroit office. 

“The FBI will continue the investigation of the Hoffa case. We will run down every lead as we have in the past,” Clenney said. “We think there is a possibility that the state can pursue charges.” 

FBI agents hope to meet with Oakland County Prosecutor David Gorcyca to review the case and discuss whether state charges apply, Clenney said. 

Gorcyca did not immediately return messages seeking comment, but he told The Detroit News he must review every criminal case “whether the person’s last name is Hoffa or Jones.” 

Gorcyca said he couldn’t speculate on the likelihood that his office would bring charges. 

On Thursday, John Bell, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Detroit bureau, told The Detroit News the federal case was stymied because of the time elapsed since Hoffa disappeared from a restaurant parking lot July 30, 1975. 

Clenney, who spoke Friday on Bell’s behalf, declined to elaborate. 

Bell’s comments followed the FBI release of 1,330 pages from its investigative file to the News. Clenney said the timing of the release and the comments on federal charges were coincidental. 

The released documents showed the case still was active as of January, when investigators were pursuing leads in Baltimore and Indianapolis. 

The FBI turned over the entire 3,432 pages from its file to U.S. District Judge Victoria A. Roberts in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit. The judge will decide what other material, if any, should be released to the public. 

The case returned to the limelight in September, when the News reported DNA evidence placed Hoffa in a car that investigators had long suspected, but were never able to prove, was used in the disappearance. 

The DNA from Hoffa’s hair matched that of a strand of hair found in a borrowed 1975 Mercury Marquis Brougham driven by longtime Hoffa friend Charles “Chuckie” O’Brien the last day Hoffa was seen alive, the report said. 

O’Brien told investigators in 1975 he borrowed the car, owned by the son of reputed Mafia figure Anthony Giacalone, to deliver a frozen salmon to Robert Holmes, then president of Teamsters Local 337. 

The delivery was near the restaurant where Hoffa was supposed to meet with Giacalone and New Jersey Teamsters boss and underworld associate Anthony Provenzano. Neither showed up. Both said no meeting was scheduled. 

O’Brien has denied having anything to do with Hoffa’s disappearance. 

Teamsters President James P. Hoffa, the late union leader’s son, declined comment, a union spokesman said. 

Hoffa’s daughter, Barbara Ann Crancer, a municipal judge in St. Louis, said the FBI volunteered to mail her a copy of the newly released documents. 

“I don’t see this as an ending. I see this as the FBI washing their hands of the situation,” Crancer said Friday. “I plan a wait-and-see attitude until I’ve been able to see the FBI report and analyze what it contains.” 


NY corrections dept. ends sale of inmate art

By Rik Stevens, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

ALBANY, N.Y. — The Department of Correctional Services has discontinued its annual inmate art show and banned the sale of art produced in prisons amid an uproar over a serial killer who profited from his works. 

Corrections spokesman James Flateau confirmed Friday that the “Corrections on Canvas” show, held for 35 years in the Legislative Office Building in Albany, has been eliminated. 

At the same time, Corrections Commissioner Glenn Goord ordered, effective immediately, that the state’s 67,000-plus inmates are not allowed to profit from their art or handicraft, though they can still produce it. 

Inmates, who buy their own art supplies, had been allowed to keep half the proceeds from their sales in the nine-day show, with the other half going to the state Crime Victims Board. 

Last year, $5,395 went to the Crime Victims Board, bringing the total over the past 16 years to more than $45,000, Flateau said. 

“It was designed to allow inmates to show that during incarceration, they were finding positive ways to use their time in a manner that was felt contributed to rehabilitation,” Flateau said. “In more recent years, the show has been perceived by some as the state providing a forum for inmates to profit from their crimes.” 

Last year, a portrait of the late Princess Diana was among 10 sketches and paintings by convicted serial killer Arthur Shawcross selling for up to $540 each. 

Relatives of Shawcross’ victims were outraged. Shawcross, 56, is serving a 250-year sentence for killing 11 Rochester-area women a decade ago. 

Robert Gangi, executive director of the Correctional Association of New York, called the ban a “blow to the rehabilitative process, at least for those inmates who produce attractive art.” 

Gangi said most inmate artists are not predatory or dangerous, and selling their art helped rehabilitating inmates “increase their sense of themselves.” 

After the uproar over Shawcross, Gov. George Pataki directed Goord to review the rules to disallow participation by notorious violent criminals.  

Goord took the directive one step further and barred it for all inmates.


Skeletal remains found at Kentucky construction site

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Nearly 70 sets of skeletal remains have been found at the construction site of the state Transportation Cabinet complex in the three weeks since the first bones were spotted in a dump truck. 

David Pollack, an archaeologist with the Kentucky Heritage Council, which is overseeing the recovery, said the body count of 66 is much higher than had been expected after the first week of digging. 

Officials at first thought the site could have been a cemetery used by the old state penitentiary, which was torn down following the flood of 1937. However, several more children’s skeletal remains were found Wednesday, “which makes me think this may not be an old prison cemetery,” Pollack said. “But we haven’t discounted anything.” 

Archaeologists believe the people may have been buried between 1800 and 1850. Along with the human bones, archaeologists have found rings, coins and brass coffin handles in the excavation area, which is about the size of a football field. 

The bodies will be taken to an archaeology lab at the University of Kentucky, where the bones will be cleaned and analyzed to determine gender and age. 

“We’ll look for pathologies, diseases and any evidence of trauma they may have had,” Pollack said.  

It has not been determined where the bodies will be taken for reburial. 

A worker first saw bones in a dump truck at a dumpsite March 11. Franklin County coroner Mike Harrod and the state medical examiner’s office determined the truck came from the government construction site. 

——— 

On the Net: 

http://www.state.ky.us/agencies/khc/khchome.htm 


Historians decry Liberty Bell home’s location

By Joann Loviglio, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

PHILADELPHIA — When visitors walk through the brand-new $9 million pavilion housing one of the nation’s most enduring icons of freedom, they will tread above the spot where the first president kept his slaves. 

But even before the Liberty Bell Center opens in 2003, a debate is brewing over how best to treat the place where slavery and freedom co-existed. 

Some historians say building the center’s entrance just beyond the site of George Washington’s slave quarters is tantamount to burying history — both literally and symbolically. The National Park Service argues the underground structure, yards from where the bell that became a symbol of the abolitionist movement, has to be covered over to be preserved. 

“If it’s not going to be destroyed, the best preservation is to leave it in place — that’s standard practice and one of the tenets of archaeology,” National Park Service spokesman Phil Sheridan said. “Excavating it can mean you have to destroy it.” 

However, critics say it appears that the government is avoiding the obvious contradiction of freedom and servitude. They want the National Park Service to halt construction and perform an extensive archaeological evaluation, though they say there are no plans to force the issue with a lawsuit. 

“Our historical memory is often managed and manipulated (but) it’s downright being murdered in Philadelphia,” said Gary B. Nash, a history professor at the University of California, Los Angeles and a scholar of the American Revolution. 

The Park Service says it already has done excavation work and recovered thousands of artifacts. The slave quarters were untouched. 

“The excavation was very thorough ... we looked at everything we could have looked at,” added Rebecca Yamin of John Milner Associates, which performed the work. 

The Liberty Bell Center is part of a $300 million redesign of Independence Mall that includes the new Independence Visitor’s Center and the under-construction National Constitution Center. 

The new center is just steps from where the Liberty Bell has been displayed in a glass pavilion since 1976. It attracts 1.6 million visitors a year. 

At the very least, The Independence Hall Association, a watchdog group, wants a memorial, perhaps an outline marking the house where Washington once lived. 

City officials also want some sort of commemoration, said Frank Keel, spokesman for Mayor John F. Street, adding that it was “too early to determine whether excavation can or cannot happen.” 

Washington’s house was a red-brick mansion at Sixth and Market (then called High) streets, where the founding father conducted the nation’s business. It’s also where he brought eight slaves from Mount Vernon, including his cook, Hercules, and Martha Washington’s personal servant, Oney Judge, who eventually fled those now-buried slave quarters and gained their own freedom. 

Washington’s successor, John Adams, also used the home during Philadelphia’s time as the national capital, from 1790 to 1800, before moving to Washington, D.C. 

In 1951, the remains of the house were demolished to make way for Independence Mall. Public toilets now occupy the spot. 

“This is the sort of stuff people would love to hear about, but it does get to the serious matter of how liberty and slavery coexisted,” Nash said. 

——— 

On the Net: 

Independence National Historical Park, http://www.nps.gov/inde/liberty-bell.html 

Independence Hall Association, http://www.ushistory.org/presidentshouse/index.htm 


Artificial heart patient says his motivation is to someday go home

By Dylan T. Lovan, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Even if he was a little out of breath from his morning workout, Tom Christerson still stopped a hospital employee Friday to shake his hand. 

“See you tomorrow!” said Christerson, who has lived the longest — nearly 6 1/2 months — with the AbioCor self-contained artificial heart. 

The training session at a Jewish Hospital rehab center is a daily routine for Christerson, 71, who says he is looking forward to a short trip home to western Kentucky in the next couple of weeks. Last week, he moved out of his hospital room and into an adjacent hotel. 

“I think about home very seriously all the time,” he told The Associated Press after the short workout. “And I’m hoping that they’ll let us go either this weekend or next weekend. But I know I’m not ready to be discharged completely.” 

The AbioCor, a plastic and titanium pump, was implanted Sept. 13. He was the second person, behind Robert Tools of Franklin, Ky., to get the heart. Tools died Nov. 30 after living about five months. 

Christerson’s daughter, Pat Pryor, said her dad was so weak before the surgery, walking four or five steps was a struggle. Pryor said her dad was never someone who exercised a lot, but he has a different mindset now. 

“Now he sees it as a means to the end, so he’s going to do whatever it takes,” Pryor said, as she watched her dad take laps around the room. “He’s getting stronger and stronger every day. He’ll be turning cartwheels next time you see him.” 

His workout included walking laps with weights wrapped around his ankles, leg raises and walking along a red stripe on the floor. 

At one point, Christerson’s physical therapist asked him how the walk along the stripe felt. Christerson said OK, so he lined the patient up for another march, this time backward. 

Christerson jokingly protested. “I said that last thing was easy and he overheard it.” 

Christerson repeatedly credits his two University of Louisville surgeons, Drs. Robert Dowling and Laman Gray, for his recovery. Christerson and Dowling are scheduled to throw out the first pitch at an exhibition baseball game Saturday. 

Christerson, a popular figure in his hometown, said he’s already made arrangements for his return home. Recently, some friends visited him and he gave them a special request. 

“I said you get that damn fire truck ready, I want a ride on it, with the sirens going full blast,” he said. “They said they’d do that for me, so I’m anxious to get on that fire truck.” 


Domestic steel producers raise prices

By Dan Nephin, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

PITTSBURGH — As cheaper foreign steel imports are being hit with new tariffs, U.S. mills are raising prices to meet increased demand for domestic steel. 

Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel and other companies say they are not taking advantage of the pressure on foreign mills created by the Bush administration’s tariffs, but reacting to the market, where supplies are limited as the improving economy increases demand. 

Average prices, which had sunk to 20-year lows, remain far below what they were in years past, they say. 

According to Purchasing Magazine, which tracks steel prices, the average for hot-rolled steel has risen to $260 a ton, compared with $210 a ton three months ago. In 1980, the average price was $361 a ton. 

“We’re trying to basically recover some of the pricing that’s been lost,” said Michael R. Dixon, a U.S. Steel spokesman. 

A weak economy last year caused steel users to dip into inventories rather than buy new steel, said Charles Bradford, an analyst with Bradford Research in New York. 

With reserves depleted, steel users now find themselves forced to buy at higher prices. 

“There’s suddenly a lot less supply of steel available,” Bradford said. 

And fewer companies making it. When LTV Corp. idled mills in December, it reduced capacity by about 6 million tons a year. A total of 15 million tons in annual capacity have been lost in a recent wave of bankruptcies; about 30 mills have gone under since 1998. 

Michael Siegal, chairman of Olympic Steel, an Ohio company that gets steel from mills to manufacturers, said he has also heard reports of companies rationing steel to buyers, though he hasn’t encountered it. 

He said he’s had no trouble finding steel for customers — as long as they’re willing to pay more. 

“I was taught a long time ago, there’s never a shortage of steel to buy, only a shortage of steel to buy at the price you want,” Siegal said. 

U.S. Steel said it is not rationing steel to customers, but Elizabeth Kovach, a spokeswoman for Bethlehem Steel, acknowledged that customers are being told it will take about twice as long to fill some orders as this time last year. 

“That’s rationing to me,” Bradford said, which prompts customers to order more steel than they need. 

“It’s a very bad situation because everybody loses,” Bradford said. 

It remains to be seen how much of the higher price users will pass on to customers. 

Some analysts believe the higher domestic costs and reduced availability of foreign steel could drive manufacturers out of the United States and into countries exempt from the tariffs, like Mexico and Canada. 

Robert Crandall, a senior fellow at The Brookings Institution, a liberal Washington think-tank, said he doesn’t expect big automotive or appliance manufacturers to leave, however. 

“Those people don’t pick up and move overnight,” he said. 

Crandall predicted that increased prices and reduced foreign competition would lead to more so-called minimills, which operate by melting scrap steel rather than producing the metal from iron ore and tend to use nonunion labor. 

Minimills, he said, can be built for less and can make steel cheaper than companies such as U.S. Steel, Bethlehem Steel and LTV. 

“They can build a plant and produce sheet steel for about $200 a ton in about two years,” he said. He added that half of steel production is from minimills. 

“The big guys are dying,” he said. 


Documentary outlines Columbine killers’ warning signs

By Jon Sarche, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

DENVER — Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold showed signs of depression and violent fantasies two years before their suicidal rampage at Columbine High School, according to an upcoming TV documentary. 

Bullying at school prompted sadness and resentment, and violent images in film and video games helped push Harris and Klebold into anger and depression, researchers say in the “Investigative Reports” program airing on the cable network A&E on April 15. 

Klebold and Harris killed 13 people and wounded 23 before killing themselves inside the school in 1999. 

One classmate, who is not identified in the documentary, said Harris told his psychology class of a recurring dream in which he awakes, comes to school and starts shooting students and teachers and then blows up the school. 

Students also said the gunmen made a video for a classroom assignment called “Hitmen for Hire.” 

“There were three people in the video, and I think Dylan and Eric were the hit men,” student Jon Behunin said. 

Nate Dykeman, another classmate who was a friend of both teens, said Harris’ parents found a pipe bomb when they searched their son’s room. 

“They were furious about it and then kept it in their room because they didn’t know what to do with it,” he said. 

In their lawsuits, victims’ families have alleged that deputies were aware that Harris’ father, Wayne Harris, found a pipe bomb made by his son and exploded it in a vacant field. Wayne Harris has denied that he found such a bomb. 

The show follows psychiatrists and a former FBI agent on the Newport, Calif.-based Threat Assessment Group, which sought to develop “psychiatric autopsies” of Harris and Klebold. The team’s conclusions will not be released until the documentary airs. 

None of the group’s findings uncovered new information, Jefferson County School District spokesman Rick Kaufman said. 

He also said teachers and administrators reacted appropriately to warning signs cited in the documentary such as writings and Internet postings in which Harris and Klebold telegraphed their meticulously planned attack. 

In a letter to the documentary’s producers, district Superintendent Jane Hammond questioned the timing of the show. 

“We believe the project will do very little in the way of unveiling any new information or insights into the tragedy,” she wrote. “It does, however, have the potential to unleash more harm and heartache to a school and community that have suffered enough.” 

County District Attorney Dave Thomas asked the group in 1999 to help determine what motivated the gunmen. Team members spent a week in the Littleton area in September, interviewing about 50 people, including friends and teachers. They also reviewed police reports, physical evidence, and some video tapes and writings made by Harris and Klebold. 

Psychiatrist Park Dietz, who worked on the Unabomber case and evaluated a Houston woman recently sentenced to life in prison for drowning her five children, said Harris and Klebold reinforced each other’s “bad ideas” and immersed themselves in violent media. 

“Once you have a person who is very angry and also suicidal, all it takes to create mass murder is the model of mass murder as the way to go,” Dietz said. 

The team explored possible motives and settled on several they considered likely: anger, revenge, suicide and fame. 

“They did it for power and respect and control and revenge,” Dietz said. “They did it out of anger. They did it as a flashy form of suicide. They did it to gain infamy ... And they did it to call attention to the problem of bullying.”


Navy: former Nebraska priest court martialed for lewd conduct

By Kevin O’Hanlon, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

LINCOLN, Neb. — The Navy confirmed on Good Friday that an ex-priest accused of sexually abusing four Nebraska boys in 1978 was later convicted of lewd conduct involving boys as a military chaplain. 

Robert Hrdlicka, who became a Navy chaplain in 1986, was court martialed for seven counts of acts unbecoming an officer, Navy spokesman Lt. Jon Spiers said. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison in 1993 and released in 1999. His whereabouts are unknown; a telephone listed under the same name in nearby Crete rang unanswered Friday. 

The case — among many to rock the Roman Catholic church across the country — has been revived in the Lincoln Diocese, which said this week that the four brothers, now adults, are demanding $2 million to keep quiet about their alleged abuse at the hands of Hrdlicka. 

“I’m not going to say it’s blackmail,” said attorney Rocky Weber, who represents the diocese. “They demanded this payment and threatened to go public if the bishop didn’t accommodate them. There is no intention of paying.” 

As Easter weekend approached, sex abuse scandals that have troubled the Roman Catholic Church continued to come to light in cities across the country. 

In Boston, police arrested a man who tried to confront the priest he had accused of sexually abusing him 23 years ago. Garry Garland, 38, who was arrested Thursday at the home of Monsignor Frederick Ryan, is charged with driving offenses and disorderly conduct and was expected to remain under psychiatric care. 

St. Louis school officials defended the district for hiring a defrocked priest as an elementary school counselor, saying the church secretly settled sex-abuse lawsuits against him. The comments came a day after the former priest, James Beine, was accused of exposing himself to boys at the grade school. 

In Detroit, a county prosecutor subpoenaed a bishop for information in an investigation into a sexual misconduct charge leveled against a priest by a woman. 

In the Navy case, Hrdlicka was relieved of duty after an investigation began into reports of molestation while he was stationed at the Naval Air Station Sigonella in Italy in 1988. Investigators said there were two incidents in Italy and five in Beaufort, S.C., involving boys ages 7 to 11. 

Lincoln Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz said there was no record of any accusations against Hrdlicka when he took over as bishop in 1992. 

He said he suspended Hrdlicka, who was still affiliated with the diocese, in 1993 after learning of his troubles in the Navy. Bruskewitz said he then launched an inquiry and eventually learned of the allegations made by the four brothers. 

He said the brothers and their representatives did not ask for compensation at that time and were concerned only that the priest “was no longer functioning as a priest.” 

In Omaha, Archbishop Elden Curtiss is under fire for transferring a priest accused of viewing child pornography from a school in Norfolk and allowing him to continue teaching in the Omaha area. 


Oprah declines Bush’s invitation to Afghanistan

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

CHICAGO — Talk show host Oprah Winfrey declined President Bush’s offer to join an official U.S. delegation to tour Afghanistan’s schools, saying she didn’t have the time. 

The trip was to celebrate young girls’ return to school after the fall of the Taliban regime. 

“She was invited and she respectfully declined,” a spokeswoman for Winfrey’s Chicago-based company said Friday. “Due to her responsibilities to the show, she is not adding anything to her calendar.” 

Without Winfrey on board, the White House postponed the trip that also was to feature some of the administration’s top women, including Bush adviser Karen Hughes and possibly National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, the Chicago Tribune reported Friday. 

Aides told the paper it was unclear whether another celebrity who shares Winfrey’s credibility and popularity could be substituted. 

The White House did not immediately respond to questions Friday about the trip or any role Winfrey might have played. 

The Winfrey strategy was devised to dampen images of global violence as Bush’s political advisers become increasingly worried that key voting groups might be growing weary of the constant talk of death and brutality in the war on terrorism, the Tribune said. 

Winfrey is very protective of her reputation and image. Her shows are seen in over 100 countries and her “O” magazine has a paid circulation of 2.5 million. 

Her Web site has a page with listings of organizations that offer assistance to women in Afghanistan.


Home Matters: Plan now to counter chaos

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

Get through the dirty, invasive as stressful time of remodeling with communication and understanding 

 

Anyone who’s lived through chaos created by home remodeling can relate to this truism: remodeling is dirty, invasive, and stressful. 

If it’s a kitchen job, you shuttle the family from diner to diner, spending megabucks on three square meals a day. 

If it’s a bathroom makeover, kiss your privacy goodbye. And couch potatoes take notice: your cable may be cut while your den is updated. 

But there’s no need to star in your own remake of “The Money Pit.” According to a seasoned contractor who orchestrates rehabs and re-dos, you can mitigate the impact on family life with preplanning and common sense. 

“A lot of it gets back to communication,” says Mike Turner, vice president of Contractor Networks for The Home Service Store, a company that manages home projects for consumers. “You really need to understand what’s about to happen and address those issues in advance.” 

Turner identifies “points of chaos” that homeowners should recognize before construction ever starts: 

Strangers will be in your home for an extended period; your family and social life will be disrupted; a general lack of privacy may grate on nerves; services may be severed — television, plumbing, utilities, etc.; there will be dust, lots of dust. 

Turner advises homeowners to host a pre-construction conference with workers, including subcontractors, to establish verbally and in writing what he calls the “rules of order.” 

Discussion items include your expectations for daily cleanup, work start and stop times, rooms the family can use, work schedule changes to accommodate in-home social functions, how to control dust, no smoking, work schedules and who has access to the house and when. 

This last point, security, should be of significant concern to homeowners. 

Turner says contractors should conduct criminal background checks on workers and subcontractors. One home entry key should be kept in a lock box with access limited to key staff. Valuables, jewelry and guns should be removed from the home. 

Then there is ongoing communication. In most two-wage-earner homes, no one is around during the day to answer inevitable questions. Turner suggests a dry erase board or cell phone — even a custom e-mail address per job — to create daily give-and-take between homeowner and contractors. 

Convene a sit-down with the contractor once a month. Don’t talk about work in progress but how the family — children, too — is holding up under the strain. “This usually causes a big sigh of relief,” says Turner. “It keeps everyone up to speed on what’s going on. It’s an eye-opener.” 

How to contain dust sits atop most agendas. Negative draft methods use exhaust fans to pull dust from work areas. Simple-to-install zippered devices called “dust doors” affixed to doors and entries allow movement from room to room with minimal dust transfer. 

Plastic sheets segregate dusty rooms from habitable areas. 

“It’s important to get agreements on all the chaos points before you lift a finger on the job,” says Turner. “Any remodeling job puts a stress on homeowners, kids, pets and the contractors. But in the long run, communication takes as much of the stress out of things as possible.”


on the house Questions & Answers by James and Morris Carey

James and Morris Carey
Saturday March 30, 2002

Q. Scott asks: Urgent! What is it meant by the term “grade of abrasive paper” and what is meant by the term “raising the grain”? 

 

A. The “grade” (or grit) of abrasive paper (sandpaper) refers to the size of the abrasive particles in the sandpaper. Given the same number of passes and the same amount of pressure, paper with larger particles sands deeper (and rougher) than paper with smaller ones. A lower number indicates that the grade of the paper is used for rough sanding where a high number indicates the sandpaper is meant for finish sanding. 

Generally speaking, 30-grit and 60-grit papers are used for rough sanding, 100-grit to 150-grit sandpaper is for medium sanding and 220-grit sandpaper is used for finish sanding. 

Of course, this changes with the type of wood and whether the sanding is done by hand or with a machine. Sanding a soft wood with rough sandpaper could possibly tear the wood fibers (the grain). Sanding perpendicular to the wood fibers also could tear them. When the fibers tear they raise from the surface. Another way of causing the grain to raise is to over-wet wood. 

The best way to determine what grit to use is to test-sand. Keep in mind that rough grits of sandpaper leave deep scratches, so start with the finer grits (150 to 220) and slowly work up to the rougher grades. Raising the grain is what painters must contend with after the first coat of paint is applied. At this point, and once the paint or varnish has dried, the first coat and the raised surface must be smoothed. The second coat of finish usually will not raise the grain. This is because the wood is protected from absorbing moisture by the previous coat. 

 

 

 

Q. Bill asks: What is the best way to seal the garage door? 

 

A. We assume you are referring to a sectional garage door rather than the tilt-type. Generally speaking, a high-quality sectional garage door that has been properly installed is reasonably weatherproof. But even the best doors can begin to leak after long use. 

A simple fix would be to apply a 1-inch-wide strip of rubber to the inside surface of the door at each horizontal section joint — all the way from one side of the door to the other. Apply the strip to the upper section centered between it and the section below. A special rubber bottom can be purchased to fit the base of just about any garage door. For the sides of the opening — on the outside trim — attach old-fashioned weather-stripping for a conventional door. It’s the type with the round vinyl bead attached to a flat metal strip. If the door is wood, use staples or nails to attach your windproofing. If the door is a metal one, use half-inch, self-tapping screws. Once you have all the materials, you should be able to do the entire job in an afternoon. 


Making room for guests

By Carol McGarvey, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

When you plan a spot for visitors, pretend you are the guest. What would you need to feel comfortable? 

It’s OK if you can’t provide a separate space as a guest room. Put a futon, daybed or convertible sleeper sofa to work when guests visit you. It can be in your family room, den, library or home office. If space is really tight, look into the concept of a fold-down bed, based on the old idea called Murphy beds. 

It’s amazing how a reading lamp, comfortable bedding and a bowl of fruit or bottled water can create an instant welcoming spot. 

If you do have a separate guest room, have fun decorating it. Consider your visitors. Soft neutrals or pale pastels can help soothe weary travelers. A small chest can double as a nightstand, and swing-arm lamps mounted on the wall by the bed can serve as reading lamps without taking up lots of space. 

Think carefully when choosing blinds. Privacy is a major concern, and light-blocking shades might be good, depending on the side of the house. 

If you have to work during part of your guests’ visit, offer house keys, directions, maps and brochures to shopping spots or area attractions. Perhaps they could meet you for lunch or visit your work site for a short tour. 

For your guests: 

 

• Pamper them with items of comfort: Water carafe. Place a carafe and glass on the bedside table or on a chest. Bottled water is a special touch. 

• Alarm clock. If guests have an early appointment or a plane to catch, this is helpful. 

• Padded hangers. Stock your guest closet with padded hangers. Wooden or plastic hangers are other options. 

• Luggage rack. It’s a nice “hotel” touch, available at furnishings stores and in catalogs. 

• Small television, books and current magazines. 

• Treats, such as wrapped cookies and fresh fruit. Fresh flowers. 

——— 

 

Better Homes and Gardens Bed & Bath Decorating Ideas & Projects (Meredith Books, $14.95 softcover) and Better Homes and Gardens Making a Home (Meredith Books, $29.95).


Show off style in the kitchen

By Carol McGarvey, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

If a new or remodeled kitchen is in your future, be prepared for myriad choices to show off your personal style. Abandon any rules you think “must” be followed in kitchen planning. The sky’s the limit. 

Can’t decide between the wood look and white cabinets? These days it’s OK to have both. Wall cabinets in one finish and base cabinets in another provide visual interest. 

Can’t afford maintenance-free granite countertops everywhere? Just put them in one work area and mix the look with another material — laminate, ceramic tile, solid-surface materials, stainless steel, concrete or butcher block. Splurge in one area and conserve in another. Consider a marble slab for pastry-making, placing heat-resistant granite near the oven and a butcher block for slicing and chopping. 

But before you shop around, take a quiz to determine your needs: How much time do you spend in the kitchen? What do you do there — eat, read, relax, work on projects, talk on the phone or work on a computer? Does your family message center or bill-paying area need to be in the kitchen? Who’s there with you — children, friends or colleagues? Do you cook alone or with others? What do you cook — elaborate dishes or simple meals? What large and small appliances are essential for you? Where do you store them? Consider the room size, floor plan and window placement. Think about storage and trash — areas you deal with daily. What’s your style — sleek, traditional, uncluttered or an eclectic mix of items and looks? 

Start a kitchen file of ideas. When you see a brochure at a home center, a color swatch at a paint store or a photo in a magazine that sparks interest, tuck it away. What you like will start surfacing. 

When it comes to remodeling, even if you have a small kitchen, perhaps you can take advantage of adjoining spaces. Maybe a passthrough or opening up one wall would make the whole area work as a multipurpose cooking-dining-family room. 

One trend is the unfitted kitchen, featuring freestanding, furniture-like cabinetry to create a personal look. A mix of materials, colors and counter heights all work for an eclectic feel. 

Other areas of choice involve flooring, lighting, range and oven styles, sink styles and materials and the ever-growing number of faucet choices. And after the contractor is gone, you’ll have decisions to make about paint color, window treatments and adding accessories to your new space. 

If you’re having trouble balancing your dreams with your bank account, here are ways to cut the budget a bit: Mix and match materials. Splurge one place and cut back another. Create an island from an old table or a pantry from an armoire. 

If you can, do some of the work yourself to cut costs. Shop carefully. If you buy direct, your materials costs might be significantly lower. 

Let those who bid on your project know which materials you plan to purchase. Pay for expertise. An architect or kitchen designer can keep you from making mistakes that cost more than their fees. Compromise intelligently. Choose good labor over expensive materials. A good cabinetmaker, carpenter or decorative painter can make even mundane materials look great. 

———  

 

Better Homes and Gardens Kitchen Planner (Meredith Books, $14.95 softcover). 


Sierra fir logs sent to South Africa to be recycled into California furniture

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Douglas fir logs cut from the Sierra Nevada in the 1800s are about to complete a round trip that has taken more than a century. 

The logs served as ballast for ships that carried gold, coal and iron ores from California refineries back to South Africa, where they had been mined. They had been shipped to California between 1865 and 1890 because South Africa did not have the facilities to refine them. 

The logs that piled up from the ships were used in South Africa for construction, mainly as support for warehouse roofs in Durban. But those warehouses are coming down, and the wood is being exported for use in furniture. 

Douglas fir once was considered throwaway wood in South Africa, but has since become highly prized. 

The Wooden Duck, a Berkeley furniture manufacturer specializing in using recycled wood, is expecting a shipment in May. 

“We know immediately when we look at the grain that’s Douglas fir from California,” said Eric Gellerman of The Wooden Duck. “That age period doesn’t exist in South Africa.” 


Allergan awaits FDA approval to market Botox for cosmetic use

By Simon Avery, The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Not since the early days of Viagra has a lifestyle drug garnered so much attention as Botox. 

Botox has erased early wrinkles on young women, flattened the furrowed brows of middle-aged TV anchormen, removed sweat stains under the arms of runway models, and even erased gamblers’ unwanted facial expressions. 

In the process, the muscle-paralyzing substance has become one of the most profitable products for Allergan Inc., which first branded the drug more than a decade ago for treating crossed eyes. 

Botox is a laboratory refined strain of botulinum toxin — one of the most poisonous substances on earth — that’s given in extremely small therapeutic doses. Botulinum toxin causes botulism and is a favored tool of bioterrorists. The cult Aum Shinrikyo dispersed a strain of it in aerosol form in several failed attacks in Japan in the early 1990s. 

Botox already has regulatory approval to treat certain spasmic disorders. But it’s the drug’s wrinkle-busting properties that have created a national buzz. 

“I am getting to the point where the lines are a little more noticeable. (Botox) is an easy way to soften that change,” said Lisa J. Davis, a Los Angeles TV producer in her early 30s who smoothed her brow with her first treatment last week. 

Men and women of all ages have made Botox injections the most popular cosmetic medical procedure in the nation since 2000, even though the procedure falls in a gray area and may produce side effects such as swelling or numbness. 

The Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve the drug for cosmetic use, but the agency doesn’t prevent doctors from using it in this way. 

This kind of “off-label” use could change soon. Allergan submitted clinical trials of cosmetic Botox last year to the FDA, which is now in the final stages of its review process. 

The Irvine, Calif., health care firm is restricted from discussing Botox or its plans for the drug while the regulatory process continues. But analysts say Allergan already has a multimillion-dollar ad campaign ready to launch soon after winning approval. 

The company will pitch Botox with ads in magazines and newspapers using the tag line, “It’s not magic. It’s Botox,” according to Gregg Gilbert, an analyst with Merrill Lynch. 

In a cosmetic treatment, a doctor injects Botox into the facial muscles that cause wrinkling. The drug blocks a substance called acetylcholine that transmits signals from the brain to the muscle, paralyzing the muscle. The effects normally last about three months, which keeps most patients returning on a regular basis for treatments that average about $400. 

The recurring costs are just one reason analysts say Botox will boost Allergan’s profits. They estimate it costs the company $40 to produce a vial of Botox. The firm sells it to doctors for $400. 

With aging baby boomers reluctant to part with their youth, no serious competition on the market, and only 10 percent of the U.S. market estimated to have been tapped so far, Wall Street sees plenty of upside. 

“Botox absolutely has potential to become a billion-dollar drug for Allergan,” Gilbert said. 

Botox did about $300 million in worldwide sales last year, of which as much as half related to cosmetic use, according to analysts’ estimates. 

In cities such as New York and Los Angeles, Botox is already the talk of beauty parlors and cocktail parties. 

“It’s an in-vogue product,” said Tim Chiang, an analyst with Banc of America Securities LLC. “It’s like having a fashion designer bag, a Louis Vuitton.” 

But in other parts of the country, Botox is still catching on. 

“Everybody knows about Botox on the two coast lines,” said Donald Ellis, an analyst with Thomas Weisel Partners LLC. “In between, it’s not as common knowledge.” 

Last year, the Midwest accounted for nearly 10 percent of procedures, the West Coast 36 percent and the north Atlantic coast, including New York, 32 percent, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. 

The procedure was most popular among the 35-40 crowd, which accounted for just over half of all patients using Botox for cosmetic purposes in 2001. 

Paul Nassif, a facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon in Beverly Hills, expects a slight increase in business if the FDA approves the process. He said he has already performed a few thousand Botox procedures and interest has been growing in the past few months. 

He recently began arranging bimonthly Botox parties at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. Guests talk about what’s new in plastic surgery and receive their Botox together, along with champagne, Perrier and a light massage. The sessions also give prospective patients a chance to see how the treatment is done. 

Bachelorette parties are a big market to tap in Las Vegas, Nassif said. 

The treatments do not come without side effects, which can include bruising or nausea. Critics complain Botox also erases facial expression. 

But Nassif insists that’s not the case if Botox is injected properly and used in modest amounts to remove frown lines or eye wrinkles. In less than one percent of cases though, a patient may get a droopy eyebrow or eye lid for a few weeks, he said. 

Nassif and other doctors are finding secondary benefits from Botox, such as relief from neck pain and certain types of headaches. The drug also prevents excessive sweating on palms or under armpits. 

“Botox is still in its infancy,” said Chiang. “It can help anything muscle-related, and your whole body is covered in muscles.” 

Allergan wants to expand Botox sales in other markets, too. The firm is spending $50 million a year on research and development of Botox, Gilbert said. 

The company is also currently seeking FDA clearance to market the drug to treat tension headaches and migraines. 


Superintendent may give students say in BHS cuts

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Superintendent Michele Lawrence may grant Berkeley High School students a role in determining which courses will be eliminated at BHS next year. 

Lawrence suggested the possibility at a meeting with student leaders Wednesday afternoon, in response to a request by BHS senior Sean Dugar, who asked that students sit in with administrators to decide which classes might be stripped next year as part of the move from a seven- to a six-period day. 

“I have never though of doing that, but I don’t see why that couldn’t happen,” said Lawrence. “I’m amenable to something like that.” 

The meeting was the second in a series of gatherings between Lawrence and students focused on the budget. The school district faces a $5.4 million deficit next year, and is moving forward with several cost-cutting measures, including the shift to a six-period day.  

Parents and students have repeatedly raised concerns that the shift could lead to sharp cuts in the arts, African-American studies and other electives. Lawrence has argued that, while there will be some cuts, they will not be drastic. 

A recently completed study by former BHS computer science teacher Peter Bloomsburgh, who has often been tapped as a district volunteer for his statistical and technological expertise, suggests that the proposed schedule for next year will probably not require heavy cuts in electives. 

However, the six-period schedule does include a reduction in the high school’s popular and successful double-period science program, which has some community members concerned. 

The Bloomsburgh study also examined class sizes at the high school. The report concluded that, when traditionally small special education and ninth-grade English classes are removed from the equation, the average class size is 26.7. 

Earlier this year a district analysis suggested that the average class size at BHS, while funded at a ratio of 29 students to one teacher, is actually closer to 32:1, in part because the high school has allowed students to take more than their allotment of courses. 

The Board of Education voted on Feb. 27 to declare a “severe fiscal emergency,” enabling the financially-strapped district to raise class sizes next year, in a cost-saving measure, from the formal 29:1 ratio to a 31:1 ratio. The district said the proposed “increase” would, in fact, be a reduction from the actual 32:1 ratio. 

At the Wednesday meeting with students, Lawrence said Bloomsburgh’s analysis has led the district to look again at its analysis. 

“He found that class sizes are really quite low, and I’m still trying to figure out those numbers,” she said. 

In a separate interview with the Planet, Lawrence said she was “encouraged” by Bloomsburgh’s figures and hopeful that the high school would have lower class sizes next year than previously thought. 

BHS students who attended the Wednesday meeting intend to come up with their own budget-cutting proposals and present them to the superintendent in a subsequent meeting. 

Lawrence, in an initial meeting with students last week, warned that a media presence would alter the discussion. The students voted to exclude a reporters from the Daily Planet and the BHS student newspaper, the Jacket.  

 

 

 


Ferries: Get on Board

Jerri Holan
Friday March 29, 2002

For the environment, recreation and the future of inter-Bay transportationZ 

Editor:  

 

Your 3/27 FORUM article regarding the future Berkeley/Albany ferry service at Gilman Street was very informative — pointing out the benefits of ferry service for local residents.  

For many reasons, the proposed ferry terminal at Gilman Street is a top priority site for new service in the Bay Area. Residents here have ranked traffic congestion as the number one problem facing the region.  

At the 3/18 Albany Council meeting, the Water Transit Authority (WTA) discussed how ferries are a very environmentally friendly form of transit and how state-of-the-art vessels and fuel studies will work for the Bay Area.  

In fact, they are studying the first-ever “no-emissions” (fuel cell) ferry, they know that biodiesel works well in ferries, and that ferries are more economical than many other forms of public transportation.  

Their final report and Draft EIR, to be completed late this Summer, will outline these issues.  

Another critical aspect of ferry service is how important they become during disasters. We saw evidence of how essential ferries were after the Loma Prieta Earthquake -- without ferry service, the East Bay would have been isolated for months from San Francisco while the Bay Bridge was being repaired.  

New Yorkers also rediscovered the value of their ferry service after the World Trade Center disaster -- ferries were [and are] the only viable transportation system still functioning after their downtown area was devastated by terrorists.  

Perhaps one of the most important aspects of Albany/Berkeley ferry service is land use. Because the state is currently planning the Eastshore State Park, this is a golden opportunity to coordinate the Bay Trail. With a new 

ferry terminal located at Gilman Street, the public will gain access to a waterfront that has been privately governed since 1941 when the racetrack was built. This means that unless a person is a racetrack patron, this large shoreline area (most of Albany's and a large part of Berkeley's) is off-limits to the public.  

Ferry service would do much to change this draconian state of affairs.  

The WTA has discussed ways a bayside alignment of the Bay Trail from Buchanan Street to Gilman Street as part of the Gilman ferry could be developed. Bicycle riders, pedestrians, and Eastshore State Park users would then gain easy access to all parts of the Park as well as to other recreational areas in the Bay such as Golden Gate Recreation Areas, Angel Island, PacBel Park and downtown San Francisco to name just a few destinations.  

Because the WTA is on an aggressive timeline to complete their studies and make recommendations to the state legislature, we urge everyone to let their decision-making bodies in Albany & Berkeley know how much we need ferry service here.  

By this summer, we ought to be on board!  

 

Jerri Holan 

Berkeley


Going solo ...

By Matt Artz, Special to the Daily Planet
Friday March 29, 2002

The life of an independent musician can be hectic, but in between releasing an album, booking a tour, rehearsing and working a day job, Eileen Hazel finds time to laugh even if it is at her own expense.  

On April 4 at 8 p.m. smiles should abound La Peña Cultural Center, when the Berkeley singer-songwriter teams up with other local musicians for a CD release concert in support of her first solo album, “My Interesting Condition,” released on FolkDiva records.  

“It’s been like planning a wedding,” said Hazel who is in charge of nearly every facet of the event.  

Once the party starts, she will get lots of help.  

Joining her on stage will be a six-person band including her FolkDiva cohorts Green and Root, the CD’s producer, Lisa Zeiler, of the recently retired Berkeley-based trio “Rebecca Riots,” as well as drummer Jerry Peraza, bassist Jean Dusablon and electric guitarist Rick Auerbach. 

“My Interesting Condition” explores the contradictions ingrained in life, especially those that arise from relationships that have gone awry. 

This is a theme that easily lends itself to angry rants or melancholy ballads, but Hazel earnestly conveys the tortured emotions felt by the subjects without resorting to melodrama or bombast. 

“I think relationships can often be absurd,” said Hazel. “It’s ridiculous how you feel when one is ending, like your world is falling apart, but then all of sudden everything is OK again.” 

This perspective permeates the entire album. The songs are imbued with an optimistic confidence that no matter how the subject feels at the moment, everything will turn out for the best.  

Although the emotion in Hazel’s songs is heartfelt and sincere, she refuses to take herself or her subject matter too seriously. The song “Fooling Me,” in which Hazel bemoans the credulousness of her “big, overdeveloped and highly evolved brain,” shows that she feels more comfortable laughing at her own mistakes than scowling at another’s misdeeds. 

The lighthearted resilience displayed by the subjects in several of her songs is evident in Hazel as well. Arriving in the Bay Area 10 years ago as a traveler from Minnesota who played bass in folk rock bands, Hazel endeavored down several different creative paths. She learned to play acoustic guitar and the Appalachian dulcimer, and from 1992 to 1997, she performed on stilts with the troupe Women Walking Tall. 

In 1999 Hazel and three friends — Green, Root and Helen Chaya — formed FolkDiva Records, an independent label created to further their musical pursuits and support women’s causes. The label has released three CD’s, and together, its founders have organized and performed at benefit shows for several organizations including The California Coalition of Women Prisoners. 

In December of 2000, buoyed by encouragement from her friends, Hazel decided that what she had to say was important enough to share with a larger audience. In July of the following year, she entered the studio for her first lesson in recording. 

Instinctively a live performer, Hazel had to adjust to a setting in which her movement was restricted and every note had to be perfect. Hazel, who was not used to playing guitar sitting down and having three microphones flanking the instrument, joked that sometimes the hardest challenge was merely staying still. "I’m used to moving around when I play, so it took some getting used to sitting perfectly still and keeping the same distance from all three mics." 

Hazel credits Lisa Zeiler, her producer and former guitar teacher, with helping her to enjoy the process. "Lisa has been a mentor to me," said Hazel. "There is no way I could have done this or be as pleased with it without her support." 

Now a published musician, Hazel faces a new challenge – promoting herself. For a woman who is given to self-reflection and lighthearted humor this is no simple task. If she is fortunate, then perhaps one day she can devote herself to music full-time and maybe even hire someone to do the grunt work. But, for now Eileen is enjoying her newfound burdens, and she has plenty of reasons to smile. 

 

 


Arts and Entertainament Calendar

Staff
Friday March 29, 2002

 

924 Gilman Mar. 29: Limpwrist, All You Can Eat, The Subtonics, The Bananas, Sharp Knife; Mar. 30: 9 Shocks Terror, What Happens Next?, Phantom Limbs, The Curse, Onion Flavored Rings; All shows begin a 8 p.m. 924 Gillman St., 525-9926 

 

Anna’s Bistro Mar. 29: Anna & Ellen Hoffman; 10 p.m. Hideo Date; Mar. 30: Robin Gregory; 10 p.m. Ducksan Distones Jazz Sextet; Music starts at 8 p.m. unless noted, 1801 University Ave., 849-2662. 

 

Cato’s Ale House Mar. 31: Phillip Greenlief Trio; 3891 Piedmont Ave., Oakland, 655-3349 

 

Freight & Salvage Mar. 29: Jack Hardy, $16.50; Mar. 30: Faye Carol, $17.50; 1111 Addison St., 548-1761, folk@freightandsalvage.org 

 

 

“Impact Briefs 5: The East Bay Hit” Through Mar. 30: Fri. - Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 7 p.m., A collection of seven plays all about the ups and downs of in the Bay Area. $12, $7 students. La Val’s Subterranean Theatre, 1834 Euclid, 464-4468, tickets@impattheatre.com. 

 

“The Merchant of Venice” Through Mar. 31: Wed. - Thurs. 7 p.m., Fri. - Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m., Women in Time Productions presents Shakespeare’s famous romantic comedy replete with masks and revelry, balcony scenes, and midnight escapes. $25, half-price on Wed. The Berkeley City Club, 2315 Durant Ave. 925-798-1300 

 

“Knock Knock” Through Apr. 14: Wed. - Sat. 8 p.m., Sun 2 p.m., 7 p.m., A comedic farce about two eccentric retirees whose comfortable philosophical arguments are interrupted by a series of strange visitors. $26 - $35. Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison St., 843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org 

 

“Murder Dressed in Satin” by Victor Lawhorn, ongoing. A mystery-comedy dinner show at The Madison about a murder at the home of Satin Moray, a club owner and self-proclaimed socialite with a scarlet past. Dinner is included in the price of the theater ticket. $47.50 Lake Merritt Hotel, 1800 Madison St., Oakland, 239-2252, www.acteva.com/go/havefun. 

 

“A Fairy’s Tail” Mar. 16 through Apr. 7: 8 p.m. Fri. and Sat., 5 p.m. Sun., The Shotgun Players present Adam Bock’s story of a girl and her odyssey of revenge and personal transformation after a giant smashes her house with her family inside. Directed by Patrick Dooley. $10 - $25. Mar. 16 - 31:Thrust Stage at Berkeley Rep, 2025 Addison St.; Apr. 4 - 7: UC Theatre on University Ave.; 704-8210, www.shotgunplayers.org. 

 

“Trace of a Human” Through Mar. 30: Jim Freeman and Krystyna Mleczko exhibit their latest works including mixed media sculpture installation and acrylic on canvas paintings. 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Ardency Gallery, 709 Broadway, Oakland, 836-0831, gallery709@aol.com 

 

 

“The Works of Alexander Nepote” Through Mar. 29: Nepote was a 20th century artist whose medium is a process of layered painting of torn pieces of watercolor paper, fused together in images that speak of the spirit that underlies and is  

 

embodied in the landscape he views. Check museum for times. Bade Museum, Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Ave., 849-8272 

 

 

 

“Trace of a Human” Through Mar. 30: An exhibit of mixed media sculpture by Jim Freeman, and acrylic paintings on canvas by Krystyna Mleczko. Tues. - Sat. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ardency Gallery, 709 Broadway, Oakland, 836-0831, gallery709@aol.com 

 

 

 

 

“Journey of Self-discovery” Through Mar. 30: Community Works artist Adriana Diaz and Willard Junior High students joined together to explore gender stereotypes, advertising, and other influential elements in society in a project that culminated in two life-size portraits that explore self-identity. Free. La Pena Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave. 845-3332. 

 

“West Oakland Today” Through Mar. 30: Sergio De La Torre presents “thehousingproject”, an open house/video installation that explores desire surrounding one’s sense of home and place. Marcel Diallo presents “Scrapyard Ghosts”, an installation that presents a glimpse into the process of one man’s conversation with the living past through objects of iron, wood, rock dirt and other debris unearthed at an old scrapyard site in West Oakland’s Lower Bottom neighborhood. Pro Arts, 461 Ninth St., Oakland  

 

"Earthly Pleasures" assemblage and photographs by Susan Danis, Through March 30: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., Mon. - Sat.; Sticks, 1579 B, Solano Ave., 526-6603.  

 

“Domestic Bliss” Through Apr. 4: Collection of abstract paintings and mixed medium by Amy St. George. Albany Community Center Foyer Gallery, 1249 Marin Ave., Albany, 524-9283. 

 

“Portraits of the Afghan People: 1984 - 1992” Through Apr. 6: An exhibit of black and white photographs by Bay Area photographer Patricia Monaco. Free. Mon. - Fri. 8:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Photolab Gallery, 2235 Fifth St., 644-1400 

 

“The Zoom of the Souls” Mar. 23 through Apr. 13: An exhibit of oil paintings by Mark P. Fisher. Sat. 1 p.m. - 6 p.m. Bay Area Music Foundation, 462 Elwood Ave. #9, Oakland, 836-5223 

 

“Sibila Savage & Sylvia Sussman” Through Apr. 13: Photographer, Sibila Savage presents photographs documenting the lives of her immigrant grandparents, and Painter, Sylvia Sussman displays her abstract landscapes on unstretched canvas. Free. Wed. - Sun. 12 p.m. - 5 p.m. Berkeley Art Center, 1275 Walnut St. 64-6893, www.berkeleyartcenter.org 

 

“Trillium Press: Past, Present and Future” Feb. 15 through April 13: Works created at Trillium Press by 28 artists. Tues. - Fri. noon - 5:30 p.m., Sat. noon - 4:30 p.m.; Kala Art Institute, 1060 Heinz Ave., 549-2977, www.kala.org.  

 

“Art is Education” Mar. 18 through Apr. 19th: A group exhibition of over 50 individual artworks created by Oakland Unified School District students, Kindergarten through 12th grade. Mon. - Fri. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Craft and Cultural Arts Gallery, State of California Office Building Atrium, 1515 Clay St., Oakland, 238-6952, www.oaklandculturalarts.org 

 

“Expressions of Time and Space” Mar. 18 through April 17: Calligraphy by Ronald Y. Nakasone. Julien Designs 1798 Shattuck Ave., 540-7634, RyNakasone@aol.com.  

 

“The Legacy of Social Protest: The Disability Rights Movement” Through April 30: The first exhibition in a series dealing with Free Speech, Civil Rights, and Social Protest Movements of the 60s and 70s in California. Photograghs by: Cathy Cade, HolLynn D’Lil, Howard Petrick, Ken Stein. The Free Speech Cafe, Moffitt Undergraduate Library, University of California-Berkeley, hjadler@yahoo.com.  

 

“The Art History Museum of Berkeley” Masterworks by Guy Colwell. Faithful copies of several artists from the pasts, including Titian’s “The Venus of Urbino,” Cezanne’s “Still Life,” Picasso’s “Woman at a Mirror,” and Botticelli’s “Primavera” Ongoing. Call ahead for hours. Atelier 9, 2028 Ninth St., 841-4210, www.atelier9.com. 

 

“Quilted Paintings” Mar. 3 through May 4: Contemporary wall quilts by Roberta Renee Baker, landscapes, abstracts, altars and story quilts. Free. The Coffee Mill, 3363 Grand Ave., Oakland 465-4224 

 

“Jurassic Park: The Life and Death of Dinosaurs” Feb. 2 through May 12: An exhibit displaying models of the sets and dinosaur sculptures used in the Jurassic Park films, as well as a video presentation and a dig pit where visitors can dig for specially buried dinosaur bones. $8 adults, $6, youth and seniors. Lawrence Hall of Science, Centennial Dr., above the UC Berkeley campus, 642-5132, www.lawrencehallofscience.org 

 

“Masterworks of Chinese Painting” Mar. 13 through May 26: An exhibition of distinguished works representing virtually every period and phase of Chinese painting over the last 900 years, including figure paintings and a selection of botanical and animal subjects. Prices vary. Wed. - Sun. 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. The University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2626 Bancroft Way, 642-4889, www.bampfa.berkeley.edu 

 

“The Image of Evil in Art” Feb. 7 through May 31: An exhibit exploring the varying depictions of the devil in art. Call ahead for hours. The Flora Lamson Hewlett Library, 2400 Ridge Rd., 649-2541. 

 

“The Pottery of Ocumichu” Through May 31: A case exhibit of the imaginative Mexican pottery made in the village of Ocumichu, Michoacan. Known particularly for its playful devil figures, Ocumichu pottery also presents fanciful everyday scenes as well as religious topics. Call ahead for hours. The Flora Lamson Hewlett Library, 2400 Ridge Rd., 649-2540 

 

“Being There” Feb. 23 through May 12: An exhibit of paintings, sculpture, photography and mixed media works by 45 contemporary artists who live and/or work in Oakland. Wed. - Sat. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sun. 12 - 5 p.m. $6, adults, $4 children. The Oakland Museum of California, Oak and 10th St., 238-2200, www.museumca.org 

 

“Scene in Oakland, 1852 to 2002” Mar. 9 through Aug. 25: An exhibit that includes 66 paintings, drawings, watercolors and photographs dating from 1852 to the present, featuring views of Oakland by 48 prominent California artists. Wed. - Sat. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sun. 12 - 5 p.m. $6, adults, $4 children. The Oakland Museum of California, Oak and 10th St., 238-2200, www.museumca.org 

 

Readings 

 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center Mar. 17: 3 p.m., Suzan Hagstrom reads from her book “Sara’s Children: The Destruction of Chielnik,” chronicling the survival of one brother and four sisters in Nazi death camps. Free. 1414 Walnut St. 848-0237 x127 

 

Black Oak Books Feb. 27: 7:30 p.m., Author & Activist Randy Schutt discussing his new book "Inciting Democracy: A Practical Proposal for Creating a Good Society." 1491 Shattuck Ave., 486-0698. 

 

Cody’s on Fourth St. Feb. 27: 6 p.m., Rodney Yee brings “Yoga: The Poetry of the Body”; Feb. 28: Rosemary Wells talks about children, children’s books, and the importance of reading; All events begin at 7 p.m. unless noted and ask a $2 donation. 1730 Fourth St., 559-9500, www.codysbooks.com.  

 

Cody’s on Telegraph Ave. Feb. 25: David Henry Sterry describes “Chicken: Self-portrait of a Young Man for Rent”; Feb. 26: Carter Scholz reads from “Radiance”; All events begin at 7:30 p.m. unless noted and ask a $2 donation. 2454 Telegraph Ave., 845-7852, www.codysbooks.com.  

 

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore Mar. 7: Carl Parkes, author of “Moon Handbook: Southeast Asia”, presents a slide show exploring his travels in the region; Mar. 12: William Fienne describes his personal journey from Texas to North Dakota as he follows the northern migration of snow geese; Mar. 14: Gary Crabbe and Karen Misuraca present slides and read from their book, “The California Coast”; Mar. 19: Barbara and Robert Decker present a slide show focusing on the volcanoes of California and the Cascade Mountain Range; Mar. 21: Stefano DeZerega discusses opportunities for study, travel, and work in Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, or Eastern Europe; All readings are free and start at 7:30 p.m., 1385 Shattuck Ave. at Rose, 843-3533. 

 

GAIA Building Mar. 14: 7 - 9 p.m., Lecture with Patricia Evans speaking from her book, “Controlling People: How to recognize, Understand and Deal with People Who Are Trying to Control You.”; Mar. 19: Reading and slide show with Carol Wagner, “Survival of the Spirit: Lives of Cambodian Buddhists.”; March 21: 6 - 9 p.m., 1st Berkeley Edgework Books Salon; Mar. 22: 6:30 - 9:30 p.m., Book Reading and Jazz Concert with David Rothenberg; All events are held in the Rooftop Gardens Solarium, 7th Floor, GAIA Building, 2116 Allston Way, 848-4242. 

 

Gathering Tribes Mar. 15: 6:30 p.m., Susan Lobo and Victoria Bomberry will be conducting readings from “American Indians And The Urban Experience.”; 1573 Solano Ave., 528-9038, www.gatheringtribes.com.  

 

UC Berkeley Lunch Poems Reading Series Mar. 7: Marilyn Hacker reads from her most recent book, “Squares and Courtyards”. Free. Morrison Library in Doe Library, UC Berkeley campus, 642-0137, www.berkeley.edu/calendar/events/poems. 

 

University of Creation Spirituality Mar. 21: 7 - 9 p.m., Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future, An Evening with Author Margaret J. Wheatley, $10-$15 donation; 2141 Broadway, Oakland, 835-4827 x29, darla@berkana.org. 

 

 

Poetry 

 

Poetry Flash @ Cody’s Mar. 3: Myung Mi Kim, Harryette Mullen & Geoffrey O’Brien; Mar. 6: Bill Berkson, Albert Flynn DeSilver; Mar. 10: Leslie Scalapino, Dan Farrell; Mar. 13: Lucille Lang Day, Risa Kaparo; Mar. 20: Edward Smallfield, Truong Tran; Mar. 24: Susan Griffin, Honor Moore; All events begin at 7:30 p.m., $2 donation. 2454 Telegraph Ave., 845-7852, www.codysbooks.com.  

 

Poetry Reading @ South Branch Berkeley Public Library Mar. 2: Bay Area Poets Coalition is holding an open reading. 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. Free. 1901 Russell St. 

 

Word Beat Mar. 9: Sonia Greenfield and Megan Breiseth; Mar. 16, Q. R. Hand and Lu Pettus; Mar. 23: Lee Gerstmann and Sam Pierstorffs; Mar. 30: Eleanor Watson-Gove and Jim Watson-Gove; All shows 7 - 9 p.m., Coffee With A Beat, 458 Perkins, Oakland. 526-5985, www.angelfire.com/poetry/wordbeat. 

 

Fellowship Café Mar. 15: 7:30 p.m., Eliot Kenin, poetry, storytellers, singers and musicians. $5-$10. Fellowship Hall, 1924 Cedar St., 540-0898. 

 

Tours 

 

Golden Gate Live Steamers Grizzly Peak Boulevard and Lomas Cantadas Drive at the south end of Tilden Regional Park Small locomotives, scaled to size. Trains run Sun., 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Rides: Sun., noon to 3 p.m., weather permitting. 486-0623. 

 

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Fridays 9:30 - 11:45 a.m. or by appointment. Call ahead to make reservations. Free. University of California, Berkeley. 486-4387. 

 

Museums 

 

Habitot Children’s Museum “Back to the Farm” An interactive exhibit gives children the chance to wiggle through tunnels, look into a mirrored fish pond, don farm animal costumes, ride on a John Deere tractor and more. “Recycling Center” Lets the kids crank the conveyor belt to sort cans, plastic bottles and newspaper bundles into dumpster bins; $4 adults; $6 children age 7 and under; $3 for each additional child age 7 and under. Mon. and Wed., 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Tues. and Fri., 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thur., 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 2065 Kittredge St. 647-1111 or www.habitot.org. 

 

UC Berkeley Museum of Paleontology Lobby, Valley Life Sciences Building, UC Berkeley “Tyrannosaurus Rex,” ongoing. A 20 foot by 40 foot replica of the fearsome dinosaur made from casts of bones of the most complete T. Rex skeleton yet excavated. When unearthed in Montana, the bones were all lying in place with only a small piece of the tailbone missing. “Pteranodon” A suspended skeleton of a flying reptile with a wingspan of 22-23 feet. The Pteranodon lived at the same time as the dinosaurs. Free. Mon. - Fri., 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sat. and Sun., 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. 642-1821. 

 

Holt Planetarium Programs are recommended for age 8 and up; children under age 6 will not be admitted. $2 in addition to regular museum admission. “Constellations Tonight” Ongoing. Using a simple star map, learn to identify the most prominent constellations for the season in the planetarium sky. Daily, 3:30 p.m. $7 general; $5 seniors, students, disabled, and youths age 7 to 18; $3 children age 3 to 5 ; free children age 2 and younger. Daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Centennial Drive, UC Berkeley, 642-5132, www.lhs.berkeley.edu. 

 

Lawrence Hall of Science Mar. 16: 1 - 4 p.m., Moviemaking for children 8 years old and up; Mar. 20: Spring Equinox; “Jurassic Park: Dinosaur Auditions Live Science Demonstrations” A directed activity in which children “audtion” to be a dinosaur in an upcoming movie. They’ll learn about the variety of dinosaurs in the Jurassic Park exhibit as well as dress up, act, and roar like a dinosaur. Through May 12: Mon. - Fri. 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m.; Sat. - Sun. 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m. 3 p.m. $8 adults, $6 children. Centenial Dr. just above the UC campus and just below Grizzly Peak Blvd. 642-5132 

 

UC Berkeley Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology will close its exhibition galleries for renovation. It will reopen in early 2002.  

 

Send arts events two weeks in advance to Calendar@berkeleydailyplanet.net, 2076 University, Berkeley 94704 or fax to 841-5694.


Out & About Calendar

Compiled by Guy Poole
Friday March 29, 2002


Friday, March 29

 

City Commons Club 

12:30 p.m. 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Peter Hillier, assistant city manager, transportation; “Bringing About a Paradigm Shift.” $1. 848-3533. 

 

Berkeley Women in Black 

noon - 1 p.m. 

Bancroft and Telegraph Ave. 

Standing in solidarity with Israeli and Palestinian women to urge an end to the occupation and push the peace process forward. 548-6310, wibberkeley.org. 

 


<\h3> Saturday, March 30 

Keep Kids Street Safe 

1:30 - 4 p.m. 

YWCA 

1515 Franklin St., Oakland 

A national campaign helping keep children safe and healthy. Highlights include food, prizes and music. 530-1319, compeace@concentric.net 

 


Sunday, March 31

 

Art, Healing and the Creative Process 

4-8 p.m. 

GAIA Arts and Cultural Center 

Patrice Wynne and Maria Teresa Valenzuela 

Presentation, exhibit and sale open house 

For more information, call 848-4242 

 


Monday, April 1

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 

Winter Lectures on Energy 

What About Renewable Energy 

Find out how to make the sun’s energy work for you 

Berkeley Adult School 

University Ave and Bonar Streets 

For more information 981-5435 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org


Out & About Calendar

Compiled by Guy Poole
Friday March 29, 2002


Friday, March 29

 

City Commons Club 

12:30 p.m. 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Peter Hillier, assistant city manager, transportation; “Bringing About a Paradigm Shift.” $1. 848-3533. 

 

Berkeley Women in Black 

noon - 1 p.m. 

Bancroft and Telegraph Ave. 

Standing in solidarity with Israeli and Palestinian women to urge an end to the occupation and push the peace process forward. 548-6310, wibberkeley.org. 

 


Saturday, March 30

 

Keep Kids Street Safe 

1:30 - 4 p.m. 

YWCA 

1515 Franklin St., Oakland 

A national campaign helping keep children safe and healthy. Highlights include food, prizes and music. 530-1319, compeace@concentric.net 

 


/h3> Sunday, March 31 

Art, Healing and the Creative Process 

4-8 p.m. 

GAIA Arts and Cultural Center 

Patrice Wynne and Maria Teresa Valenzuela 

Presentation, exhibit and sale open house 

For more information, call 848-4242 

 


Monday, April 1

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 

Winter Lectures on Energy 

What About Renewable Energy 

Find out how to make the sun’s energy work for you 

Berkeley Adult School 

University Ave and Bonar Streets 

For more information 981-5435 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org


’Jackets come out flat, still get a win

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Friday March 29, 2002

The Berkeley High boys’ lacrosse team played without inspiration against Marin Catholic on Thursday, but the ’Jackets’ tough defense carried them through for a 6-1 victory. 

Berkeley held the Wildcats without a goal until the final minute of the third quarter, holding possession for the majority of the game and keeping shooters away from goalie Marc Bloch. Marin Catholic got off just 11 shots in the game, while the ’Jackets peppered the goal with 30 shots. 

Six different Berkeley players scored goals, including five in the first half, but their offense stagnated in the second half as they didn’t score a goal for the final 20 minutes. The drought was a combination of complacency and weariness after a barn-burner of a game against St. Ignatius on Tuesday, an 8-7 loss. 

“I think the players were probably emotionally drained after Tuesday,” Berkeley head coach Jon Rubin said. “But we talked about really coming out strong. It shouldn’t matter who the opponent is. Great teams play their best regardless of who their opponent is.” 

Team captain Nick Schooler said the ’Jackets’ poor offense was a result of an unusual defensive scheme by Marin Catholic. 

“We were worn out from the SI game, but (Marin Catholic) pressured the ball really hard today,” Schooler said. “We’ve never played a team that pressured the ball that far out before.” 

The Berkeley offense looked solid early in the game, getting goals from Sam Geller and Schooler in the first quarter. Julian Coffman scored on a long bouncer 48 seconds into the second quarter for a 3-0 lead, and the Wildcats shot themselves in the foot with four second-quarter penalties, keeping them on defense for most of the half. 

Ed Hill scored the next goal for the ’Jackets from an assist by Erick Lindeman, and Daniel Jarvis scored with just two seconds left to end the half for a 5-0 halftime lead. Berkeley’s last goal came from Cameran Sampson in the second minute of the second half. 

“We just lost focus on offense in the second half,” Rubin said. “We had no sense of urgency, and you can’t play offense being passive.” 

Thursday’s game was the final test of a two-week stretch against tough opposition. The ’Jackets dropped one-goal decisions to University and St. Ignatius, but they are unquestionably a better team for playing in two close games against good opponents. Rubin didn’t relish the thought of heading into league play with nothing but blowout wins under their collective belt. 

“It was hard to see today, since this was probably our worst game, but you can’t discount all we’ve learned in the last two weeks,” he said. “There’s no question we’re better prepared than we were before playing University and St. Ignatius.” 

The ’Jackets have next week off thanks to spring break, and jump right into Bayshore Lacrosse League play against College Prep the following Tuesday. That should be an easy win over a brand-new program, but a stiffer challenge will come on Thursday as Berkeley takes on Bishop O’Dowd, which Rubin considers the main challenger for the league title. 

“O’Dowd is going to be tough, no question,” Rubin said. “They have a lot of experienced players and they can put a lot of points on the board. It’ll be a big challenge to come back after a week off and play them.”


Youth Radio wins a Peabody Award

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Youth Radio is aglow. 

A day after learning they had won the prestigious Peabody Award, staff and students at the Berkeley-based, youth-run media outlet were still excited in Thursday interviews with the Daily Planet. 

“I am very proud to be part of the organization,” said Gerald “Whiz” Ward II, a program assistant at Youth Radio who started as a student intern in the mid-90s.  

The George Foster Peabody Awards, doled out every year since 1940 by the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia, typically go to big-name organizations. This year’s list of 34 winners, chosen from more than 1,100 entries, includes ABC News, National Public Radio, HBO and CNN.  

The awards, selected by a national advisory board of professors, media critics and others, generally recognize specific shows or news productions. NPR, for instance, won an award for its Sept. 11 coverage. 

But the Youth Radio award recognizes the entire organization, which provides high school students in the area with media training and internships, and produces shows and commentaries for National Public Radio, KQED and The San Francisco Chronicle, among others. 

“What’s really exciting about this for us is it includes everything Youth Radio does,” said Ellin O’Leary, executive producer and president of the non-profit organization. 

 

Youth Radio, O’Leary said, does more than just turn out radio shows and news stories. It builds technical skills and self-confidence, she said, while broadening young people’s horizons. 

Staff echoed O’Leary. Ward said the organization, which targets low-income youth, provides young people with an after-school alternative. 

Jaime Talley, internship and college bound counselor for Youth Radio, added that the organization allows young people to tell their own stories, in their own ways, to a national audience. 

This broader mission is reflected in the Peabody citation, which recognizes Youth Radio “for activities enabling thousands of teenagers to express their views, to experience civic engagement and to develop critical thinking skills, teamwork and self-esteem.” 

Rynell Williams, a Youth Radio alumnus who is now a DJ for “The Dog House,” a highly-rated Top 40 radio show on KWLD in San Francisco, said the program was vital in his success. 

“Without Youth Radio, I wouldn’t be here doing radio right now,” Williams said in a phone interview. “I was speechless about the Peabody Award. I feel that it was long overdue.” 

Surmiche Vaughn, a senior at Berkeley High School who has an engineering internship at Youth Radio, also had high praise for the organization. 

“It’s gotten me more focused on career goals, majors and college,” she said. 

O’Leary said she hopes the attention from the Peabody Award might help Youth Radio in its quest for new space. The organization currently has space in two buildings owned by Berkeley developer Patrick Kennedy, one at 2461 Shattuck Street and another at 1809 University Avenue. 

Kennedy plans to demolish the Shattuck building in 6 months and create a new structure, and the University Avenue lease runs out in October. O’Leary said the organization is seeking a new, large space, preferably in Berkeley, that will house the entire organization under one roof. But, she has concerns about cost and availability of space in the city. 

Kennedy, who has provided Youth Radio with the Shattuck space at low cost, said the organization is a “gem,” and that he would like to create a new mixed-use development downtown, similar to his Gaia building on Allston Street, with space for Youth Radio. 

Kennedy said he is eyeing a couple of downtown properties, but has no specific plans in the works. 

 

 


Violence begets violence

Gray Brechin
Friday March 29, 2002

Editor: 

 

I've read Gabe Kurtz's strong opinions in “The Planet” and on telephone pole posters about what he thinks should be done about the current intifada and to anyone, Jew or Gentile, who questions the manifest destiny of Greater Israel.  

How appropriate that Mr. Kurtz should bear the same name as the protagonist of Conrad's “Heart of Darkness” and Coppola's “Apocalypse Now.”  

He seems to have gone up the same river which leads to the conclusion that the answer to less-well-armed savagery is to exterminate the brutes and take all they mistakenly thought was theirs. Mr. Kurtz says “We should not allow history to repeat itself.” I hardly need add that such a final solution was attempted elsewhere and upon others. 

 

Gray Brechin 

Pt. Reyes Station 

 

 

 


Images of a fight for freedom

By Peter Crimmins, Special to the Daily Planet
Friday March 29, 2002

To look into the faces of the Afghan and Pakistan people in Patricia Monaco’s photographs — wide-eyed orphans in tattered clothes, gaunt-faced refugees waiting in ration lines, freedom fighters with their AK-47s — one can see that confidence comes from carrying a gun. 

“Everybody carried a gun,” said Monaco, an Oakland-based photographer whose exhibit, “Portraits of the Afghan People: 1984-1992,” is now being shown at Photolab Gallery in West Berkeley. Her photojournalism trips to the Middle East hotspot brought her into a Pakistani machine shop where people can make their own rifles and pistols. The difference between the hopeful glint in the eyes of armed Mujahideen (freedom fighters) and the haggard droop of thin refugees seems to bring truth to John Lennon’s lyric “Happiness Is A Warm Gun.” 

Monaco first stepped into Afghanistan in 1963 as a recent UC Berkeley graduate during her post-grad global wanderings. She returned, in 1984, with a camera, a National Endowment for the Arts grant and a mission to document the Afghan people during the Soviet invasion. She headed for Peshawar, about 30 miles across the border in Pakistan, where journalists and photographers were then herded. Crossing into Afghanistan was dangerous, often impossible. 

In Peshawar, said Monaco, she met with the Mujahideen, a conglomeration of Afghan tribes who fought the Soviets for 10 years. They brought her in a closed truck to secret locations inside Afghanistan. She still is not exactly sure where she was when she took photos of the Mujahideen cradling their automatic rifles and standing proudly on top of captured Soviet tanks. 

She returned in 1992 after the Soviets retreated out of the area, before the Taliban came to power. It was a period of internal skirmishes and unrest among the Kabul government and regional tribes. Monaco said she saw no significant changes in the way the people lived. 

Many of her black-and-white photos are as carefully composed as formal portraiture, often using the hazy, high-altitude light of the mountain region to bring out the subjects standing against the stark landscape. Her color photos add a note of vibrancy to the otherwise monochrome environment: the deep blue of tea canisters arranged on the dirt floor of the tea shop, the red meat in an open-air butcher shop, and the stretch of crisp blue sky hovering above an old bus trundling across a dusty mountain road. 

 

The exhibit, which had been hanging at the Oakland Museum’s Collector’s Gallery in January, is, with a few exceptions, portraiture. "It was very hard to get action shots," said Monaco. Although she was at the war zone, she was not allowed to the front lines or into the camps. Her sojourns into "secret locations" were guarded excursions with the Mujahideen who did not let her out of the truck until she arrived at the camp. She said she saw a lot of great shots pass her by outside the moving truck. 

 

One of the reasons she was not allowed to go around Afghanistan on her own was the Afghan culture’s disapproval of unescorted women. "It sounds like the Taliban invented this," said Monaco with hindsight, "but it’s not true. The Afghan culture has a rule about women alone." 

 

Monaco said she has not been back to Afghanistan since 1992. She said she is afraid of the Taliban, which had ruled the country from 1994 until very recently when U.S. forces and freedom fighters defeated it. The Taliban, Monaco said, had banned photography. 


Error-prone ’Jackets spiked by Richmond

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Coming off of the high of their first-ever ACCAL win on Tuesday, the Berkeley High boys’ volleyball team suffered a letdown against Richmond on Thursday, losing in straight games, 15-11, 15-12, 15-9. 

Unlike Tuesday, the ’Jackets (2-1, 1-1 ACCAL) committed numerous errors against the Oilers, struggling to mount any offense thanks to poor passing. They managed just 16 kills, 13 of them from junior Robin Roach. 

“We have to pass well to have any kind of consistent offense,” said Berkeley assistant coach Kingman Lim, who coached the team in the absence of head coach Justin Caraway, who was away coaching his club team. “If we develop some consistency, we can keep up with teams.” 

The second game was typical of the ’Jackets up-and-down play. Down 14-5, they fought back to within two points at 14-12, thanks to three kills by Roach and some Oiler hitting errors. But two bad passes in a row took away any chance for Berkeley to tie the score, and they went down quietly. 

The third game was much the same. Up 3-1, they gave up six straight points and never got back in the game. 

“I think we got down mentally, and let Richmond get a bunch of points in a row,” Kingman said. “We have to play point-by-point and not let those long streaks happen.” 

Even Roach, the team’s star and most consistent player, was guilty of some lowlights, making four hitting errors in the final game. The junior is the team’s only real offensive threat and was the only player with more than one kill on Thursday despite constant double-teaming. 

“It’s tough when you put all your eggs in one basket,” Kingman said. “But Robin’s pretty good even when he has to get by two blockers.” 

The ’Jackets will take next week off for spring break, then face the overwhelming league favorite El Cerrito on April 9.


Disaster Council prepares priorities to present city

By Jia-Rui Chong, Daily Planet staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Unreinforced masonry, disaster support for businesses, preparedness for schools and terrorism are the four priorities to be presented to the City Council in April in the final draft of a report hammered out by the Disaster Council Wednesday night. 

The report was originally designed as an action item for the City Council and included specific monetary figures for different programs. But the decision to change it to an informational item – because members wanted to expedite its progress through the typically crowded City Council agenda and because they thought it was too late in the budget process to get money – created some disagreement about how specific the Disaster Council should be in its requests. 

Eventually, they decided that the last section, Financial impact, would not carry the $20,000 to $40,000 figure they had initially proposed, but simply ask that the city earmark enough money for all the programs each year. 

Margit Roos-Collins wanted to put in figures for each of the council’s proposals and also draw attention to the fact that certain programs, such as sheltering, had worked extremely creatively with no city funding.  

She said she thought that putting in concrete numbers would make it more likely that the City Council would grant their request. 

But member Eileen Hughes pointed out finding appropriate figures for sections currently without would require a lot of legwork and the deadline for submitting their report to the City Clerk for the April 23 packet was fast approaching. 

“We can’t do that in three days,” said Hughes. 

She also pointed out that they had intended to issue a report in the fall, in time for budget considerations, but the events of Sept. 11 made that impossible. 

Other members of the Disaster Council thought that specific figures were unnecessary because they did not want to get into a numbers game with the city. 

“The city of Berkeley will eat you alive if you start playing the budget game,” said member Fred Leif. 

“The fundamental issue is, is this a significant priority for City Council? If it is, it follows that the money will flow with the priority,” he said. 

Other members agreed they wanted a policy document, not a budget document. 

“If this works properly, council will approve this, then it goes to the head of the Office of Emergency Services to decide on a minimum to hope for next year, which should be enough to fund most of the projects,” said member Karl Roos. 

The other main topic of discussion for the Disaster Council Wednesday night was disaster preparedness in schools.  

Martha Jones said that she still thinks that Berkeley schoolchildren are not well prepared for disasters. Jones said she had coordinated with the Red Cross to provide curriculum and training for kindergarten through eighth grade in a program like its partnership with schools in San Leandro, San Lorenzo and Alameda. 

“I went and got funding for all of that, but it’s been dragging on a long time. I talked to the Red Cross and they’re still eager to do it, but I think my funding has vanished,” said Jones. 

Jones said that she did not write this program into the current report because she did not think the money that was budgeted for last year would be available this year, given the recession. 

Other Disaster Councilmembers agreed that they should bring the issue to the attention of the Berkeley Unified School District, but were cautious about doing so because advising the BUSD on how to spend its money might be outside their jurisdiction. The BUSD is financially and administratively separate from the city. 

“We advise City Council. Our relationship with the School District is only as individuals. But we can voice concerns as concerns from the public about how kids in Berkeley are not properly planned for in the School District,” said Leif. 

They also agreed to send a copy of their final report with a cover letter to the superintendent and Board of Education after April 23. 

Chairperson Russell Kilday-Hicks will incorporate these editing suggestions, as well as inserting an item about providing food and shelter for disaster workers, into a final document with Dory Ehrlich, the city’s Community Emergency Response Training Coordinator. 

The priorities report does not mention anthrax, though Latino groups in the Bay Area received what they thought was anthrax in the mail two weeks ago. 

But the Disaster Council was interested in learning more about bioterrorism and hoped to get a speaker on the topic in May or June. 

Also on Wednesday night’s agenda was Ehrlich’s staff update. She informed the Disaster Council that the Hill Fire Station project was proceeding smoothly, with the Environmental Impact Report certified. Approval for the use permit, staffing, purchase of property from East Bay Municipal Utility District, and design of the facility should come before the City Council in late May or early June. 

She also updated the Disaster Council on the continuing search for an Emergency Services Manager. The city’s top two choices have already rejected its offers. 

The city is also applying for a grant from FEMA’s large pool of money for terrorism in order to train firefighters and buy equipment for search and rescue in collapsed buildings, said Ehrlich.


Eviro-Friendly ferry would be nice

Martin Ilian
Friday March 29, 2002

Editor: 

 

The Albany City Council at its general meeting Monday night appointed councilmember Alan Maris to serve on a community advisory committee that would look into building a terminal on the border of Albany and Berkeley, near Golden Gate Fields. 

Recommending ferry service were speakers from both Berkeley and Albany. 

They included Linda Perry of the Berkeley Ferry Commission and Jerri Holan of Friends of the Albany Ferry. 

They said that it could eliminate almost a lane of commuter traffic from the Bay Bridge. Staffers from the SF Bay Area Water Transit Authority, a new, regional government agency, said that the ferries could operate during an emergency, when BART or the bridges might be closed. 

Proponents said they would want the ferries running during weekends, for recreation. 

But ferry service would need a subsidy. The SF to Vallejo service is subsidized--fares account for 70% of expenses. Finding ferry parking might be a problem. Pollution might be a problem, but new technologies, such as bio-diesel, could be pollution-free. 

At the meeting there was talk of extending ferry service to the airport. 

 

Martin Ilian 

Albany


PBS’ ‘Media Matters’ gives the inside story on journalism

By Lynn Elber, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

LOS ANGELES— The time news consumers spend reading, watching and listening to the latest word out of Washington, Kabul or their local city hall can be enriched by adding one element: “Media Matters” on PBS. 

The ”60 Minutes”-style series dissects the newsgathering process for the public in a way that is involving, nonpolitical and wholly informative. 

That makes it a rarity in almost every aspect. Most media criticism, especially that published in journals, is directed toward a professional audience and unlikely to engage any but die-hard news buffs. 

The few TV shows that analyze media performance are of the talking-head genre that favor a quick pass at the hot topic du jour. 

“Media Matters” is unafraid to tackle subjects that aren’t sexy but are important. And when it takes on controversial fare it is forthright and evenhanded. 

At a time of crisis, when people expect more from news organizations — and can be heard expressing disappointment and confusion over what they’re getting — such a program gains in importance. 

“People depend on information to run their lives, whether they like it or not, no matter how critical they are of the media,” said series host Alex Jones, a Pulitzer Prize winner and director of Harvard University’s Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy. 

“What we’ve tried to do is make how the process works clearer, examine the process and the journalistic enterprises that are doing it and hold them accountable,” Jones said in an interview. 

Consider the series’ latest installment airing 10 p.m. EST Thursday on PBS (check local listings), which includes a segment on how broad the scope of college sports reporting should be. The focus is on two Fresno Bee writers covering ethical violations by Fresno State basketball players under famed coach Jerry Tarkanian. 

Another segment profiles Jorge Mota, an investigative reporter for Chicago’s Spanish-language newspaper Exito! (Success!) who has become the voice of the city’s large Mexican immigrant population. 

“Almost everything you see on television is negative .... We think that there’s really good journalism out there too and we felt it was important to put that in front of people,” Jones said. 

The program opens with the most timely segment, an examination of the relationship between the press and the Pentagon and its effect on coverage of the war in Afghanistan. 

Through interviews with military officials and reporters from The Washington Post, The New York Times, CNN and elsewhere, “Media Matters” details the changing balance between national security concerns and media access. 

It is a shift toward increased government secrecy that the military defends as necessary in an unusual “special ops”-dominated war. But many journalists find it unwarranted in light of past war reportage. 

“I’ve been following coverage of combat situations since the Vietnam War and I know of no instance where the military has made a case or even claimed that the press put lives in jeopardy or operations in jeopardy,” said Bill Kovach, former editor of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. 

The show, however, acknowledges division within even media ranks. 

“The job of the government is not to make reporters’ jobs easier,” said Fred Barnes, executive editor of The Weekly Standard. “They have other things to do than to maximize the amount of information that reporters get.” 

A poll conducted for “Media Matters” on whether wartime press coverage should be self-regulated or controlled by the Pentagon found that 72 percent of Americans favored military control; only 17 percent thought journalists should decide on their own. 

The survey illustrates “continuing popular skepticism of the press and its role in our society,” Jones suggests in the program. 

“Media Matters” is skewed somewhat toward print journalism, said executive producer Daniel B. Polin. “Print journalists tend to engage subject matter more deeply and longer. The stories are more interesting,” he said. 

The greatest flaw is the show’s infrequency: The previous episode aired last fall and only one other is planned for this season. Increased funding would allow for more episodes, said Polin. 

Money aside, the challenge is to find stories that are revelatory and colorful enough for television, he said. That, according to Jones, reflects a dilemma all journalism faces. 

The public doesn’t want “a media that is trivial, that spends all its time on Monica Lewinsky,” Jones said. “At the same time they want to be entertained, engaged and have entertainment values injected in their news so they can watch it as easily as they watch ’Seinfeld.’ 

“That’s a tall order.” 

——— 

On the Net: 

http://www.pbs.org 

——— 

EDITOR’S NOTE — Lynn Elber can be reached at lelber“at“ap.org 


Sports shorts

Staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Horowitz named All-American 

 

Berkeley resident Clara Horowitz was named an Accelerade All-American for track & field this week for her performance at the 2002 Nike Indoor Classic in Philadelphia. 

Horowitz, a student at Head Royce High, was named to the All-American team for finishing in the top six in the one-mile race at the meet. She has committed to run for Duke University next season. 

 

Cal Multi-Event meet gets started 

 

Headlined by 1996 Olympic decathlon gold medallist Dan O’Brien, the Cal Multi-Event meet got underway Thursday at Edwards Stadium. Only one Golden Bear, Shawna Adkins, participated in the two-day event, and she closed out the first portion of the heptathlon in third place with an overall score of 3056.  

O’Brien competed in two events on Goldman Field, the shot-put and the high jump. He tied for second on the shot-put, tossing a throw of 48-4.75. On the high jump, O’Brien’s mark of 6-4.75 was good enough for a third place tie. Leading the pack in the decathalon was Montana’s Bryan Anderson, who closed out the first day with a score of 3908.  

Adkins finished third behind Washington State’s Ellanne Richardson, who posted a score of 3335, and Beach TC’s Robin Unger, who checked in at 3302. Adkins performed well in all four events, clocking a 15.04 in the 100mH and a 26.25 in the 200m. In shot put, the Golden Bear tossed 40-0.5, while jumping 5-4.25 in the high jump.  

Competition continues today at Edwards, beginning at 9:15 a.m. 

 

Summer traveling team tryouts 

 

The James Kenney Recreation Center will be holding tryouts for a girls’ summer traveling team today and next Friday. The tryouts are open to girls’ aged 14-17 with high school eligibility for next season and will run from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. For more information ball BYA Sports & Fitness Department at 845-9066. 

 

Roner picked up by Earthquakes 

 

Cal graduate Chris Roner was signed by the San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer this week. 

Roner, an All-Pac-10 player in 2001, was signed to a developmental contract, which means he will not count against San Jose’s salary cap. 

 

Gates, Smith named All-Academic 

 

Cal senior guard Dennis Gates and junior guard Donte Smith both earned recognition on the Pac-10 All-Academic men’s basketball team, the conference announced 

Thursday. 

Gates was placed on the first team for the second consecutive year. He was also a second team choice as a sophomore in 2000. Smith garnered honorable mention status for the 

second time. 

During the past season, Gates competed as a graduate student in Cal’s School of Education. He earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology in just three years and will receive his 

master’s degree this May. On the court, Gates started 14 games for the Bears in 2001-02 and averaged 5.6 points and 2.0 rebounds. He also ranked second on the team in both 

assists (71) and steals (38). 

Smith, an undeclared major, saw action in 14 games for Cal this year, averaging 1.1 points and 0.6 rebounds. 

Over the past two years, Cal has had four first team Pac-10 All-Academic members with Gates, Ryan Forehan-Kelly and Morgan Lingle on the squad last season.


Today in History

Staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Today is Good Friday, March 29, the 88th day of 2002. There are 277 days left in the year. 

 

Highlight in History: 

On March 29, 1962, Jack Paar hosted NBC’s “Tonight” show for the final time. 

 

On this date: 

In 1638, Swedish colonists settled in present-day Delaware. 

In 1790, the 10th president of the United States, John Tyler, was born in Charles City County, Va. 

In 1847, victorious forces led by Gen. Winfield Scott occupied the city of Vera Cruz after Mexican defenders capitulated. 

In 1867, the British Parliament passed the North America Act to create the Dominion of Canada. 

In 1882, the Knights of Columbus was chartered in Connecticut. 

In 1932, a vaudeville comedian made his radio debut by saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, this is Jack Benny talking. There will be a slight pause while you say, ‘Who cares?”’ 

In 1943, World War II meat, butter and cheese rationing began. 

In 1951, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage. (They were executed in June 1953.) 

In 1971, Army Lt. William L. Calley Jr. was convicted of murdering at least 22 Vietnamese civilians in the My Lai massacre. (Calley ended up spending three years under house arrest.) 

In 1971, a jury in Los Angeles recommended the death penalty for Charles Manson and three female followers for the 1969 Tate-La Bianca murders. (The sentences were later commuted.) 

Ten years ago: Democratic presidential front-runner Bill Clinton acknowledged experimenting with marijuana “a time or two” while attending Oxford University, adding, “I didn’t inhale and I didn’t try it again.” 

Five years ago: Vice President Gore concluded his tour of Asia, saying that talks in Beijing had created “new momentum” in relations between the U.S. and China. 

One year ago: James Kopp, the fugitive wanted in the 1998 slaying of Dr. Barnett Slepian, a Buffalo, N.Y., abortion provider, was captured in France. (Kopp is fighting extradition to the United States.) A chartered jet crashed near Aspen, Colo., killing all 18 people aboard. Pianist John Lewis, who masterminded the Modern Jazz Quartet, died in New York at age 80. 

 

Today’s Birthdays: Former U.S. Sen. Eugene McCarthy is 86. Former British Prime Minister John Major is 59. Comedian Eric Idle is 59. Composer Vangelis is 59. Singer Bobby Kimball (Toto) is 55. Actor Chris Lawford (“Thirteen Days”) is 47. Olympic gymnast Kurt Thomas is 46. Actor Christopher Lambert is 45. Rock singer Perry Farrell (Porno for Pyros; Jane’s Addiction) is 43. Model Elle MacPherson is 39. Rock singer-musician John Popper (Blues Traveler) is 35. Actress Lucy Lawless is 34. Country singer Regina Leigh (Regina) is 34. Country singer Brady Seals is 33. Tennis player Jennifer Capriati is 26.


Merced mother: there was no way to predict slaughter

The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

MERCED — The mother of four children killed by her ex-husband said Thursday there was no way to predict that the former sheriff’s deputy would commit such a “horrible, unthinkable act.” 

In Christine McFadden’s first statement since John Hogan killed himself in her bed — after fatally shooting his young daughter and three stepchildren — she said there were many unanswered questions about what went wrong. 

Although Hogan had no legal custody of Michelle after the couple’s bitter divorce, McFadden said she made sure he got to see his girl five days a week. Two weeks ago, Hogan spent most of the day at his daughter’s fifth birthday party. 

McFadden’s best friend, a psychotherapist trained in crisis intervention, was at the party and didn’t notice anything of concern about Hogan’s behavior, McFadden said in a statement read by her lawyer. 

“There were no signs, no threats, and no ability to predict this horrible, unthinkable act,” said McFadden, who was out walking with a friend when the killings occurred. 

Four years ago, McFadden got a restraining order against Hogan, claiming he had an explosive temper. 

Merced Sheriff’s deputies said Hogan was bent on getting even for a divorce that left him with nothing. He blamed his stepchildren for causing the breakup. 

Before he turned the gun on himself Tuesday morning, he left an emotional phone message for a former colleague at the Santa Clara Sheriff’s office. Hogan said he didn’t know what else to do. 

“I’m bankrupt, morally, physically, emotionally, monetarily,” he said on a tape released Thursday. “My body’s gone, my mind’s gone. I have nothing left and I can’t stand what she does to me, what she’s been doing to me for a long time.” 

Autopsy results indicated that 17-year-old Melanie Willis tried in vain to fight off Hogan after he killed her two brothers, Stanley, 15, and Stuart, 14, who were both in bed. 

Scars on Melanie’s body showed signs of a struggle. Her body was found in the hallway outside her bedroom. She had been shot twice, once in the head, Cmdr. Mark Pazin said. 

Hogan shot Michelle last, striking her in the upper torso, killing her instantly. He took the dead girl in his arms and shot himself in the head in McFadden’s bed. 

Hogan, 49, retired from the Santa Clara sheriff’s department in 1993 for medical reasons after a 10-year career. He had worked as a private investigator in Merced. 

Deputies said there was no evidence Hogan had mental health problems. 

In her statement, McFadden said Hogan had “health problems and other disabilities.” 

The couple married in 1995 and divorced last year. 

McFadden, a veterinarian, thanked friends, the people she works with at Valley Animal Hospital and even strangers across the country who have sent messages of support. 

The children will be buried Tuesday in Merced. 

“I have always treasured my children and am grateful that I recognized them for the blessings they were,” she said. “The world is going to miss out on four incredible human beings.” 


Oscar-winning filmmaker Billy Wilder dies at 95

By Anthony Breznican, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Oscar-winning filmmaker Billy Wilder, the Austrian-born cynic whose gifts for writing and directing led to such classics as “Sunset Boulevard,” “Some Like It Hot” and “Double Indemnity,” has died. He was 95. 

Wilder died Wednesday night at his home, said George Schlatter, a producer and longtime friend. Schlatter said his friend of 40 years had been in failing health in recent months and he believed Wilder had been suffering from a bout with pneumonia. 

“We’ve lost a biggie,” Schlatter, producer of the 1960s comedy show “Laugh-In,” said Thursday. “I met him when I was just a kid, you know. And I was a fan all that time.” 

As co-writer, director and producer of the 1960 film “The Apartment,” Wilder collected three Oscars, the only person to do so for one film until Francis Ford Coppola won three for “The Godfather II” in 1974. James L. Brooks later did it for “Terms of Endearment” and James Cameron for “Titanic.” 

Among his other classics: “Sunset Boulevard,” “Double Indemnity,” “Stalag 17,” “The Lost Weekend,” “The Seven Year Itch,” “Some Like It Hot” and “Witness for the Prosecution.” 

“There were no ifs, ands or buts about it. He knew what he wanted. He knew how to express it, and he knew the best ways to get what he wanted out of people,” said George Sidney, 89, director of 1951’s “Showboat” and 1964’s “Viva Las Vegas.” 

His wry commentaries on the dark side of authority, love and fame influenced many contemporary filmmakers such as Cameron Crowe, Steven Soderbergh and Curtis Hanson. 

“His mind and personality were so strong it was easy to be lulled into thinking he’d go on forever,” said Hanson, director of “L.A. Confidential” and “Wonder Boys.” “As a man he was witty and irreverent of course, but he was also a humanist.” 

Shirley MacLaine, who was in her mid-20s when she co-starred in “The Apartment,” said he was an important influence on her career. 

“The great master is finished here,” she said. “He will write and direct another masterpiece in heaven. I learned more from him than anyone else.” 

Wilder was also noted as one of Hollywood’s best wits. He once remarked of postwar France: “It’s a country where you can’t tear the toilet paper but the currency crumbles in your hands.” William Holden said Wilder had “a mind full of razor blades.” 

His films were notable for their clever dialogue and an overlay of cynicism and betrayal. His actors won Oscars for their hard-bitten portrayals: Ray Milland as the unremitting alcoholic in “The Lost Weekend,” Holden as the suspected prison-camp traitor in “Stalag 17,” Walter Matthau as an insurance cheater in “The Fortune Cookie.” 

“Making movies is a little like walking into a dark room,” he once mused. “Some people stumble across furniture, others break their legs, but some of us see better in the dark than others. The ultimate trick is to convince, persuade. Every single person out there is an idiot, but collectively they’re a genius.” 

After beginning his film career in Europe, Wilder came to Hollywood in 1934 knowing 100 words of English. His fortunes turned in 1938 when he first teamed with Charles Brackett, a polished, erudite member of New York’s literary establishment. 

Brackett’s refinement and Wilder’s “vulgar energy” produced such scripts as “Midnight,” “Hold Back the Dawn,” “Bluebeard’s Eighth Wife” and the Greta Garbo comedy “Ninotchka.” The collaboration lasted 12 years, then Wilder wrote with the late I.A.L. “Izzy” Diamond for 30 years. Unsure in English — he spoke with an accent after six decades in America — he always needed a writing partner. 

Wilder began directing with “The Major and the Minor,” a 1942 comedy with Ginger Rogers and Milland. With “Double Indemnity” and “The Lost Weekend,” he became a major director as well as writer; the latter brought Oscars in both categories. 

Brackett, who produced their films, and Wilder ended the partnership with “Sunset Boulevard,” which brought Wilder a writing Oscar. From then on, Wilder produced his own films. 

After directing Marilyn Monroe in her two best comedies, “The Seven Year Itch” and “Some Like It Hot,” Wilder said he would never again direct the chronically tardy star. 

“I have discussed this with my doctor and my psychiatrist and my accountant, and they tell me I am too old and too rich to go through this again,” he said. 

The Wilder career peaked with “The Apartment,” a cynical tale of corporate corruption. Jack Lemmon played an underling who lends his apartment to company executives for trysts with secretaries. MacLaine was the romantic victim of a lying boss, Fred MacMurray, in a rare change of type (his other: “Double Indemnity”). 

Wilder continued filming for 20 years, but except for the 1963 “Irma La Douce,” he never duplicated his previous successes. The films after “The Apartment”: “One, Two, Three,” “Kiss Me, Stupid,” “The Fortune Cookie,” “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes,” “Avanti!” “The Front Page,” “Fedora.” His last film was “Buddy Buddy” in 1981 with Lemmon and Matthau. 

Despite the failures, Wilder was still working on film projects in his 80s. He never lost his wonderment at the magic of movies. 

In his late years, Wilder was laden with honors, including the Motion Picture Academy’s Irving Thalberg award for a consistently high level of production and the American Film Institute’s Life Achievement Award, both in 1988. 

When the film institute ran a survey to pick the 100 best American movies in 1998, four directed by Wilder made the list; when it picked the 100 funniest American movies in 2000, “Some Like It Hot” was No. 1. 

Wilder always looked the same on movie sets: slender, slightly hunched, wearing a sweater with sleeves rolled up, Tyrolean hat and cigar, always with ready wit (“If there’s anything I hate more than being taken seriously, it’s being taken too seriously”). 

He was born Samuel Wilder on June 22, 1906, in the small town of Sucha, 100 miles east of Vienna. The boy haunted theaters that played American films, and admired early stars like William S. Hart and Tom Mix. 

“The guy I really went for was Douglas Fairbanks,” Wilder said in later years. “He conquered a screen. And he had such panache in his whole lifestyle.” 

After short stints at the University of Vienna and working as a journalist, he broke into the movies when he was hired to write a semidocumentary, “People on Sunday,” in 1929. 

Wilder’s screenwriting career flourished until 1933, when Hitler captured power in Germany. Wilder, a Jew, fled to Paris; his mother, grandmother and stepfather died at Auschwitz. 

He co-directed a film with Danielle Darrieux, and then left for America after receiving an offer to write scripts for Columbia Pictures at $150 a week. 

A first marriage to California socialite Judith Iribe ended in 1947 after nine years; they had a daughter, Victoria. 

In 1949, Wilder married a former starlet and band singer, Audrey Young. For many years they lived in a spacious penthouse apartment in Westwood, surrounded by works of Picasso, Miro and other masters. In 1989, more than 80 items from his collection were sold at auction for more than $30 million. 

He is survived by his wife and daughter. 

——— 

Associated Press Writer Bob Thomas contributed to this report. 


Victims of possible double homicide-suicide grew up together

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

SANTA CRUZ — The three people found dead on a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean grew up in the same small eastern California town and were excellent students, school officials said. 

Officials at South Tahoe High School were baffled by the news that former students Melinda Leippe, 19, Brenda White, 19, and David Bachman, 26, died from gunshot wounds to the head. 

The bodies were discovered slumped over in a circle Tuesday night by a group of passers-by who had come to Bonny Doon Beach, about seven miles north of Santa Cruz, to watch the sunset. 

A Santa Cruz County sheriff’s department spokesman said investigators believe Bachman killed Leippe and White before turning the shotgun on himself. The two women were shot in the back of the head, said sheriff’s spokesman Kim Allyn. 

Investigators have not ruled out the possibility of a suicide pact among the three, Allyn said. There were no signs of a struggle and the bodies did not appear to have been moved. A suicide note has not been found, Allyn said. 

Investigators were not sure how long the trio had been in California.  

Records show Leippe and Bachman shared an apartment in Littleton, Colo., and White lived in the same apartment complex. The apartment manager said they all moved out about two months ago. 

All three attended South Tahoe High School, although Bachman graduated before the younger girls started their freshman year, according to the school’s principal, Karen Ellis. 

Ellis on Thursday described Bachman as an excellent student and “a wonderful young man.”  

She said Leippe was an honor student, and that neither had been disciplined for misconduct at the school. White also attended the school, but left after her junior year. 

“Nothing like this has ever happened here,” Ellis said. “We absolutely hope it never happens again.” 

White’s mother still lives in South Lake Tahoe, while Leippe has family members in Reno, Nev., and Bachman has relatives in Littleton. 

Donielle Dutton, who lived in an apartment next to Bachman and Leippe during the summer of 2000, called the two “nice and quiet” and said Bachman “was into Dungeons and Dragons” and other fantasy games, the San Jose Mercury News reported. 

Coroners performed autopsies on the two women Thursday, Allyn said. They were set to perform the third autopsy on Friday. Formal results won’t be available for at least a few weeks. 

The public has free access to the horseshoe-shaped, privately owned beach, which is known for nude sunbathing and rave parties — a rave was set to take place at the beach Wednesday night. Authorities are called there periodically on reports of drug use, sexual assaults and violence. 

“In the past we’ve had homicides there, but not very many,” Allyn said. Most reports involve “parties and just some real dangerous drifters.” 


Late storms punch Sierra snowpack to near-normal

By Don Thompson, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — The Sierra snowpack has rebounded to near-normal levels thanks to a series of late winter storms, a California Department of Water Resources snow survey found Thursday. 

Portions of the northern Sierra Nevada are above normal. But things dry out farther south. 

Overall, the survey is good news for farmers and other water users coming off a dry year. 

“We’ve just about got back what we lost during those dry periods in January and February,” said department spokesman Jeff Cohen. “It’s a fairly normal year, with some exceptions.” 

The snowpack was at 105 percent of an average year at Echo Summit near Lake Tahoe, where department officials physically checked the snow Thursday. Ninety-five automated remote sensors showed the snowpack at 100 percent of normal across the northern Sierra, 94 percent in the central Sierra and 82 percent in the southern Sierra. 

Overall, the snowpack was at 92 percent of an average year. The department expected that might be increased slightly by the time the manual survey is completed, Cohen said. 

The higher levels in the northern part of the state should help refill Folsom Lake, a part of the federal Central Valley Project, and help even more at Lake Oroville, a part of the State Water Project. 

“It’s looking much better than last year — probably twice as good as last year in terms of runoff” into Lake Oroville, Cohen said. 

The State Water Project last week raised its projected water deliveries from 45 percent of normal to 55 percent of normal. The below-normal levels reflect last year’s water deficit, Cohen said. 

Some watersheds like the Kern River are very dry in the southern Sierra, Cohen said. That part of the state has seen just a third of its usual precipitation this winter. 

Though Southern California faces droughtlike conditions, metropolitan water officials expect to make up the deficit with groundwater, Colorado River water and water reclamation without serious impact on consumers. 

The shortage is more severe in mountain communities that can’t import their water and are facing their fourth consecutive dry year. 

In addition, mountainsides usually coated with snow are already bone dry, prompting fire officials to begin adding staff and equipment in San Diego, San Bernardino and Riverside counties. 

The Sierra Nevada’s snowpack provides two-thirds of California’s water for cities, farms and recreation. In addition, snow-fed hydroelectric plants produce about a quarter of California’s power. 

The Pacific Northwest is also having a wetter winter than last year, however, easing fears of another regional hydroelectricity shortage. 

——— 

On the Net: 

The Department of Water Resources: http://www.water.ca.gov 


As weather warms, California leads climb in gas prices

By Michelle Morgante, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

SAN DIEGO — Drivers across the nation are digging deeper into their wallets to cover rising gasoline prices, which have leapt an average of 23 cents per gallon over the last month — the most dramatic change in more than a decade. 

Californians, who shoulder the added costs of reformulated gasoline mandated by pollution restrictions, are facing the highest prices in the continental United States - $1.59 on average. 

Prices in Los Angeles rose from $1.31 to $1.56 last month, while in San Diego they climbed from $1.39 to $1.62. Bay Area motorists, meanwhile, have seen prices jump from $1.42 to $1.68. 

Lisa Alcantara of Pacifica pumped $1.89-per-gallon premium into her Lexus SUV in San Francisco. 

“It’s crazy,” she said. “I just have to get in my car and go and not think about it. ... There is not a whole lot you can do. We all need gas.” 

The national average Thursday stood at $1.35 for unleaded, according to a AAA survey. The rise is fueled by a combination of factors, analysts say, including a recent decision by OPEC and other oil producers to hold down production, and the traditional spring rise in demand as driving time increases with the warming weather. 

The four-week leap is the sharpest seen by the Energy Information Administration, the statistical branch of the Department of Energy, since it began keeping records in 1990. 

Part of the reason is that gas prices fell to bargain levels — below $1 a gallon in some areas — in the wake of the Sept. 11 terror attacks, which hampered travel and slowed the economy. 

“Now that the economy has started to recover, and we’re starting to head into the summer driving season, the industry is really having to come from behind a little bit,” AAA spokesman Geoff Sundstrom said in Orlando, Fla. 

Prices still are below the national average of March 2001, when it was $1.43 due largely to the then-strong economy. 

“It went down so low, we had a bonus there for awhile,” said Vesper Gibbs Barnes, a Boston attorney who dropped her car off at a Mobile station. “I guess I’ll keep driving everywhere. I have to deal with it.” 

Crude oil prices have risen to about $25 a barrel since December, when OPEC decided the $20 a barrel they were earning then was too low, said Douglas MacIntyre, senior oil market analyst with the Energy Information Administration in Washington. 

Every $1 increase in the price of a barrel of crude oil translates into a per-gallon hike of about 2.5 cents, he said. Based on current trends, motorists should expect to see per-gallon prices rise another 5 cents to 15 cents over the next several weeks, he said. 

David Underwood, an Atlanta electrician who puts about 24,000 miles a year on his pickup truck, passes the added costs on to his customers. 

“It seems like it was less than a dollar a gallon not that long ago,” he said. “It seems like it’s gone up real fast.” 

But cab drivers in many areas are unable to pass on the costs due to government control of their rates. “It’s very difficult for us,” Yellow Cab General Manager Rebecca Escobar said in El Paso. Rising prices “cut directly into their gross profit.” 

Said one San Diego taxi driver who gave only his last name, Contreras: ”$5 less for me is five less hamburgers for my kids.” 

How far prices will climb exactly is uncertain, said Carol Thorp, spokeswoman for the Auto Club of Southern California. Perhaps Americans who canceled travel plans last year due to high gas prices or Sept. 11 will feel the urge to hit the highways this year, she noted. 

“This summer is a question mark at the moment,” Thorp said. “Anyone who tells you they can predict that is not correct.” 

Bill Potts, a retired banking supervisor, filled his Chevy Blazer at a Costco store in Chula Vista, taking advantage of its discount prices. 

His family is being careful to consolidate errands into one trip, and no longer takes pleasure drives through the mountains. “You don’t have that luxury anymore,” he said. 

John Young of St. Louis grumbled about the climbing prices as he filled up his minivan in Chicago after a family vacation trip. 

“It’s outrageous,” Young said. “If you look at the price of wholesale gas, it’s pretty much stayed the same. It’s all obviously to take advantage of spring break.” 

The price hike had commuters in warm locales looking to more fuel-efficient alternatives. 

Antonio Solares, 26, has to fill up his 1995 Ford Escort every other day for the commute between his home in Tijuana, Mexico, and his job in northern San Diego. 

“I’m thinking of getting a motorcycle — seriously,” Solares said at a gas station near the border. 

But in Miami, William Morales was unfazed as his pumped $1 of gas into his scooter. 

“They can raise the price 200 times, and it doesn’t matter to me,” he said. “This doesn’t bother me at all.” 

——— 

On the Net: 

Energy Information Administration: http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/oog/info/gdu/gasdiesel.asp 

AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report: http://198.6.95.31/ 


Click and Clack Talk Cars

Staff
Friday March 29, 2002

Burning rubber hurts more than just your tires 

 

Dear Tom and Ray: 

 

My son, who owns his own car, seems to take pleasure in showing off the power of his engine by spinning his wheels upon takeoff. He says it's harmless fun. I say he is burning rubber and costing himself money. He argues that it's not measurable, but I can see the rubber on the street, so it must be measurable. Can you help me win this argument by telling me how much rubber is actually destroyed every time he "burns rubber" and what it is costing him in tire life and dollars? Thanks. — Allan 

 

TOM: According to our calculations, Allan, he's burning 0.327815 grams of rubber off each front wheel, and 0.389459 grams off each rear wheel. And at a cost of 1.3 cents per gram of rubber, it's costing him 1.865172 cents every time he peels out. 

RAY: My brother just made all that up. We have no idea what it's costing him to do this, but of course you're right, Allan. It's prematurely wearing out his tires. But the truth is, the tires are the least of his worries. 

TOM: Right. He's hammering the clutch, the transmission, the timing chain or belt, the CV joints – basically every piece of the drive train. We wrote a pamphlet called “10 Ways You May Be Ruining Your Car Without Even Knowing It,” and jackrabbit starts are No. 1 on the list. Number 1! 

RAY: So you might want to slip one of those pamphlets into his latest copy of Maxim. To get a copy, send $3 (check or money order) and a stamped (57 cents), self-addressed, No. 10 envelope to Ruin, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. 

TOM: Every piece of his drive train is taking a beating when he burns rubber. All of those parts are going to wear out sooner than they otherwise would, and he's going to have to pay for their replacements.  

RAY: And we have a name for this, Allan. It's called "justice." Add to that the fact that he's scaring all of the neighborhood girls and won't get any dates, and I think he's getting about what he deserves.  

 

Questions that arise from boredom  

 

 

Dear Tom and Ray: 

 

With the recent economic downturn and less work to do, my co-workers and I have found ourselves sitting around our cubicles wondering about various trivial matters. Today, an argument erupted between myself and Scott, in the cubicle next to mine, about how long it takes to make a new car. I argue that they can easily crank out a new pickup truck from start to finish in one day, with the only exception being the time it takes for the painting process. He argues that it takes a couple of days to build a car or truck. Now, keep in mind that this is obviously a different question from how many cars come off the assembly line in one day. We need an answer, and you are our only hope. – Drew 

 

RAY: It's not an easy question to answer, Drew, because a lot of the parts are preassembled -- like the engine, for instance. But in terms of "putting it together," you're more right than Scott is, Drew. 

TOM: From the beginning of the assembly line to the end, when the vehicle drives off under its own power, it takes between 17 and 31 hours, depending on the efficiency of the plant. 

RAY: The most recent statistics are for 2000, and they show that Nissan is the fastest builder, with an average of 17.3 hours per vehicle. Honda is next, at 19.9; and Toyota is after that, at 21.6. 

TOM: Ford is the fastest domestic manufacturer, with a 25.7-hour average. GM is next, with 26.8; and DiamlerChrysler pulls up the rear with a lopey 31.3 hours per vehicle. 

RAY: Manufacturers are always trying to reduce the time they spend making each vehicle, because that makes the vehicle cheaper to build. Harbour and Associates, the firm that studies this stuff, estimates that Nissan, Honda and Toyota save $500-$700 per car over Ford and GM due to their faster assembly lines. 

TOM: But remember, fastest does not necessarily equal best quality. I mean, my brother and I might be able to build a vehicle in 12 hours. But it would fall apart even faster!  

 

Bleeding brake  

systems  

 

 

Dear Tom and Ray: 

 

I have been a do-it-yourselfer for many years now. None of the cars I presently own has anti-lock brakes. But I will have to buy a new car soon, and most of the cars I am considering come with ABS. I have noticed in my shop manuals that for cars with ABS, they always refer to "special equipment" needed to bleed the brake systems. Does this mean that I won't be able to work on my brakes anymore? Does the word "special" mean "expensive"? – Dave 

 

TOM: Your interpretive skills are superb, Dave! 

RAY: Actually, you'll still be able to work on your brakes, Dave. Most of the brake parts are exactly the same; the pads, discs and calipers are exactly what you're used to.  

TOM: The only difference would be if you opened the hydraulic system. While most cars with ABS can be bled the normal way -- by opening up the bleeders and pumping the brake pedal -- some ABS-equipped cars can be hooked up to a special (read: expensive) machine and be bled "automatically." 

RAY: The machine will actually activate the ABS pump, which, in effect, "pumps the brake pedal" for you. And that's a nice convenience – especially if you're working alone.  

TOM: But even on the cars we've seen where this is an option, it's not required. So you can still bleed them the old-fashioned way if you want to.  

RAY: Of course, there might be some cars with ABS that can't be bled normally, but we have yet to see one in our shop. 

TOM: So don't give up, Dave. I'm confident that -- in the comfort of your own driveway -- you have everything you need to screw up an ABS-equipped car just as easily as a non-ABS-equipped car.


Floor-to-ceiling excitement

by James and Morris Carey
Friday March 29, 2002

We recently attended the “Surfaces 2002” trade show in Las Vegas. The focus was on all things new in flooring and coverings for your home’s interior. This included carpet, ceramic tile, laminate flooring and countertops. Also, all the latest and greatest additions and changes in colors, styles and textures in everything from wallpaper to wainscot were demonstrated. 

Today’s floors, walls and ceilings are being covered faster, better and more beautifully than ever before. Many natural hardwoods — in both classic and exotic species — now offer gleaming prefinished urethane surfaces that intensify grain and provide high scratch-resistance and abrasion-resistance for extended wear. 

Improved staining, new colors and deeply distressed and hand-scraped wood surfaces were also eye-catching design tools. 

A host of new flooring concepts are giving traditional wood floors a serious run for their money. These range from engineered woods and unusual hybrid-composite products to new high-pressure plastic-laminate surfaces like those on your kitchen or bath countertops — only 10 times tougher. They look just like wood planks, stone or ceramic tiles. 

One of the more intriguing new entries is bamboo flooring. While bamboo’s been around for thousands of years in woven-mat form, today’s bamboo is milled, engineered and finished to provide beauty and durability. Bamboo floors are extremely beautiful and are harder than oak or maple. Because it is a form of grass rather than cut from trees bamboo is ecologically desirable as a readily renewable resource. 

Another surprise is the strong emergence and growing use of cork flooring. We’re not talking about your bulletin-board variety of cork, but rather attractive new textures and multi-tone designs that are — as with bamboo and other woods — prefinished with durable high-tech surfaces to offer durability and a warm, lasting beauty. 

However, the biggest buzz was centered on new glueless flooring systems. Whether natural wood planks, parquet tiles or the newer laminate, bamboo or cork flooring, each individual piece is engineered with a tongue-and-groove design that snaps together. It eliminates nailing and gluing and creates a tightly fit floor that just “floats” above the existing subsurface. What is especially nice, besides its speed and convenience, is that a glueless floor can be “unsnapped” and removed almost as easily. This is a nice feature if you want to replace a damaged piece. Another interesting offshoot: renters can now enjoy the beauty of a wood or wood-look floor and then take it along when they move. 

One manufacturer has extended this new glueless “snap” technology well beyond its full line of laminate, cork and engineered wood flooring. They offer a wide range of glueless snap-together wood-look laminate paneling systems for both walls and ceilings. Custom recessed lighting and designer accent strips also are offered. 

Another long-awaited flooring innovation finally has been perfected and now is being offered to homeowners. Combining the latest in HPL (high-pressure laminate) surfaces with new tight-fit glueless snap-seam technology, a Belgian manufacturer has added a PVC plastic base and matched tight-fit edge moldings to make a truly waterproof system. The company’s “Hydrofloor” offers the look and warmth of wood, the durability and wear of laminate surfaces, and now provides a ready answer for wet bathroom and kitchen floors. 

Ceramic and porcelain tiles are another product with a new look. Designer surfacing now ranges from deep texturing and high-definition relief tiles to hand-painted designs and pieces with a rugged, aged appearance. Both floor and wall offerings include many new shapes — allowing both intricate and exotic design combinations — and many new tiles and trim pieces with spectacular metallic surfaces. 

Today, flooring is being cut and crafted into patterns, designs and inserts never before imaginable. Computer-controlled lasers, routers and precision water jets can now re-create virtually any image, in various forms (from cutting to engraving), in just about any flooring material that exists. 

 

 

For more home improvement tips and information visit our Web site at www.onthehouse. com.


by James and Morris Carey

Tip of the week: Removing hard-water stains
Friday March 29, 2002

Tip of the week:  

Removing hard-water stains 

 

Hard water leaves its mark on shower walls and glass shower enclosures in the form of crusty little white lime deposits that sometimes seem as though they’re going to be impossible to remove. 

Here are a couple of our secret formulas that should help: 

Sodium carbonate is the chemical you’ll want to use. It’s the base for many cleaners and is the primary ingredient in washing soda. If a strong solution of sodium carbonate doesn’t do the trick, try a squirt of liquid toilet-bowl cleaner. Bowl cleaners are strong, dangerous chemicals, so use them with eye-and-skin protection and plenty of ventilation. Once the water stains are gone, apply a coat of car wax to all the surfaces in the shower. Doing so will make cleaning a breeze the next time. 


Planning vegetable families’ seating arrangements

By Lee Reich, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

How many families are you having over to the vegetable garden this summer? You have to plan their seating arrangement, you know. 

We’re talking about plant families. An example of a plant family is the mustard family, which includes among its members cabbage, broccoli, collards, and brussels sprouts. With their similar, pungent flavor, you might have guessed that they were relatives. 

More important, though — because it’s the primary characteristic that unites members of any plant family — is the similarity of their flowers. All members of the mustard family have flowers with four equal petals in the shape of a cross. 

Another prominent family that you will undoubtedly have over this summer is the pea family, which also includes beans, and, if you step over to the flower garden, lupines. Step onto the lawn and you step on another member, clover. The pea family has “irregular” flowers, each with three different shapes of petals. 

The small flowers of another family, the carrot family, all arise on stalks that radiate out from a common point atop a thicker stalk, resulting in a flat-topped or rounded cluster. Except for dill, which we grow for seeds and leaves, we miss the flowers of carrot, parsley, celery, parsnip and other members of this family because we grow them only for their roots or leaves. 

Five equal flower petals characterize one of the most-loved families in the garden, the nightshade family. World famous members of this family include potato, tomato, eggplant, and pepper. 

More than just number and shape of petals characterizes a plant family. Cucumber, squash, and melon flowers also have five, equal petals, but the flowers are either male or female. Nightshade flowers all have both male and female parts. 

Why all this ado about plant families? Because members of a plant family usually share common pest problems. As examples, clubroot disease attacks the mustards, blight attacks the nightshades, and parsleyworms chew on leaves of the carrot family. 

Except where it is sufficiently mobile, you can starve out a pest by not planting a family member in the same place more often than every three years. So if you plant a member of the carrot family at a particular location this year, plant a member of a different plant family there for the next two years. No need to banish carrot or parsley from the garden. Just plant them somewhere else — actually, in two different places — over the next few years. 

Similarly, keep changing the seating arrangement for the other families. 


Startups Moxi Digital, digeo to merge

By May Wong, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

SAN JOSE — Two startups that were in need of cash, but had ambitious goals to revolutionize the delivery of home entertainment, have decided to merge. 

Moxi Digital, based in Palo Alto, and digeo, based in Kirkland, Wash., both of which were developing platforms for multimedia set-top boxes, will announce their marriage Friday. 

Paul Allen’s Vulcan Ventures, which provided first-round funding for both companies, has invested more now to help carry the merged company through 2004, the companies said. Some additional funding also will come from cable company Charter Communications, which was an investor in digeo and also is controlled by Allen, co-founder of Microsoft Corp. 

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. 

The new company will be named digeo with dual headquarters in Kirkland and Palo Alto. Allen, who is currently the chairman of digeo, will be the chairman and major shareholder of the combined company. 

The companies said merger discussions arose in recent months as both startups sought additional funding. 

The companies saw that their missions were nearly identical: to give television viewers easy access to a new world of entertainment, information, communications and commerce. Their products — a set-top box platform that would act as a gateway for TV programming, video, music and the Internet and be distributed to multiple televisions in a house — even had some of the same components. 

“It seemed an ideal situation to join forces and be bigger, better, faster, with more money — all in one fell swoop,” said Jim Billmaier, who will remain as chief executive officer of the new digeo. 

No layoffs of the 217 employees at digeo and the 111 at Moxi are planned. The combined development teams will unveil their new, joint products in May at the National Cable and Telecommunications Association trade show. 

News of the merger did not surprise analysts, since the financial troubles of both startups were the subject of widespread speculation recently. Abrupt management changes in February at Moxi Digital, which was the larger headline grabber of the two, triggered rumors that the company did not have much left of their whopping $67 million in first-round funding. 

“We still had cash, but we were looking for money to remain as an independent company or join forces with someone else,” said Moxi’s chief executive, Rita Brogley, who took over Moxi after founder Steve Perlman abruptly stepped down Feb. 20. 

“The product we wanted to bring to market was a big idea, and it requires a large amount of money to do that,” Brogley said. 

Perlman, who also founded WebTV and made millions from its sale to Microsoft, had guided Moxi from its stealth two-year development under the name of Rearden Steel through its glitzy unveiling in January at the Consumer Electronics Show. Perlman remains an investor in the combined company, but “we’re still working out what advisory capacity he’ll have,” Billmaier said. 

Analysts say the companies bring complementary strengths to the table: Moxi, with its powerful new set-top box design, and digeo, with its relationships and deals with Charter and the two leading set-top box makers, Motorola and Scientific Atlanta. 

Neither company probably would have succeeded if it had stayed on its own, said Josh Bernoff, industry analyst with Forrester Research. 

“They needed each other here,” Bernoff said. Now, “if you sprinkle the Moxi magic dust and you blend in digeo, then you get something really powerful.” 

——— 

On the Net: 

http://www.moxi.com 

http://www.digeo.com 


Walter Hewlett sues HP Director claims it improperly won Compaq votes

By Brian Bergstein, The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

SAN JOSE — The fight against the computer industry’s biggest merger landed in court Thursday, with dissident director Walter Hewlett accusing Hewlett-Packard Co. of improperly enticing a big investor to back HP’s $19 billion buyout of Compaq Computer Corp. 

In an unusual move against a company by one of its own directors, Hewlett claimed the investment arm of Deutsche Bank originally voted 25 million shares against the deal, but switched 17 million at the last minute after HP threatened to take future business away. 

Hewlett also said HP misled investors about the progress of its plans to integrate its massive organization with Compaq’s. He said HP executives lied about their ability to achieve the deal’s financial targets without exceeding their prediction of 15,000 job cuts. 

The lawsuit asks the Chancery Court in Wilmington, Del., to invalidate last week’s extremely close vote by HP shareholders and declare the merger defeated or order a new election. HP and Compaq are incorporated in Delaware and the votes are being counted there. 

HP pledged to vigorously battle the suit, which it said was “without merit.” 

“We find it regrettable that Mr. Hewlett has chosen to resort to baseless claims without regard to the impact of his false accusations on HP’s business reputation and employees,” the company said in a statement. Spokeswoman Judy Radlinsky refused further comment. 

Hewlett, who is the eldest son of one of HP’s co-founders and heads the family’s charitable foundation, also declined comment. A Deutsche Bank representative did not return telephone messages seeking comment. 

Hewlett’s suit opened a new chapter in a vicious proxy fight and one of the closest corporate elections in years. It also leaves the future of the two companies in limbo. 

“The major concern we have is that if this lawsuit hangs on for a month, two months, six months, it essentially paralyzes these two companies,” said analyst Paul McGuckin, a vice president with Gartner Inc. “Their biggest problem is that their competitors are already trying to dump all sort of fear, uncertainty and doubt on their customers. This just makes their jobs that much easier.” 

HP, which wants to buy Compaq to bolster its technology offerings for corporate customers, claimed March 19 that a preliminary tally of its shareholders’ vote showed the deal had been approved by a “slim but sufficient margin.” 

Hewlett said the vote was too close to call. His lawsuit claims HP’s edge appears to be less than 1 percent of HP’s 2 billion shares, meaning the alleged late switch by Deutsche Bank could have affected the outcome. 

Official certification of the vote is expected to take weeks, while an independent proxy counting firm verifies each vote. HP and Hewlett also can challenge whether the proper people signed certain ballots. 

“In disputes this close and with questions over who voted and how they voted, (a lawsuit is) inevitable,” said Charles Elson, director of the Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware. “The uglier they get, the more they end up in court.” 

The five judges on the Delaware Chancery Court are experts in corporate law and are among the country’s best business judges, Elson said. There have been cases in which the court disallowed proxy votes it found were improperly cast, he added. 

As of Dec. 31, Deutsche Asset Management was HP’s 14th-largest shareholder, with 1.31 percent of its stock. Originally, Hewlett said, Deutsche money managers submitted their proxies against the merger. 

But on March 15, four days before the shareholder vote, HP opened up a multibillion-dollar line of credit, with Deutsche Bank among the financiers. Such deals are lucrative for banks. 

On the morning of the March 19 shareholder vote, “Deutsche Bank was led to understand that if it did not switch its votes in favor of the proposed merger, its future business dealings with HP would be jeopardized,” the lawsuit said. Those “enticements and coercions” defrauded and disenfranchised HP stockholders, Hewlett claimed. 

Hewlett believes the lobbying was so intense that HP chief Carly Fiorina delayed the start of the shareholder meeting to await word from Deutsche Bank. HP has said the meeting was delayed so investors could have time to reach the auditorium from distant parking lots. 

Compaq shares fell 15 cents to $10.45 in afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange. HP stock rose 17 cents to $17.94. 

——— 

On the Net: 

http://www.hp.com 

http://www.compaq.com 

Hewlett’s opposition site: http://www.votenohpcompaq.com 


Endwave to cut 30 percent of work force, or 100 positions

The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

SUNNYVALE — Chip maker Endwave Corp. said Thursday it will cut 100 jobs, or 30 percent of its work force, and close its Los Angeles design facility, 

The Sunnyvale-based company also said that it continues to expect a first quarter loss of 26 cents to 28 cents a share.  

The expected loss for the period excludes restructuring charges of $3 million to $5 million, including severance costs of about $1.5 million. 

The company still anticipates a pro forma loss before deferred stock compensation and restructuring charges of 23 cents to 25 cents a share. 

A Thomson Financial/First Call survey of three analysts produced a mean first-quarter loss estimate of 24 cents a share for Endwave, which posted a loss before items of 25 cents a share a year ago. 

Endwave also reaffirmed the prior first-quarter revenue forecast of $4 million to $5 million. The company reported revenue of $12.5 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2001. 

Endwave employed about 340 workers on Feb. 28, including the 100 at the Los Angeles facility. 

The company expects the job cuts to save about $7 million a year. It expects to see a positive effect on its cash burn rate and improvement in overall operating results in the third quarter. 

Endwave said it continues to expect 2002 revenue of $25 million to $28 million. In the past 12 months, the company lost $166.3 million on revenue of $40.02 million. 

Shares of Endwave were trading unchanged at 86 cents on the Nasdaq Stock Market at midday Thursday. 


Bookseller’s legacy lives at Moe’s

By Claudine LoMonaco Special to the Daily Planet
Thursday March 28, 2002

Like so many literary towers of Pisa, piles of books teeter around the register at Moe’s Bookstore on Telegraph Avenue. 

“We move a lot a books here,” said Moe’s employee Robert Eliason. “A thousand a day maybe?”  

Their total number of books?  

“350,000? 400,000? Who knows,” he said. “The entire inventory turns over every nine months.” 

For many Berkeley newcomers, Moe’s four-story emporium is simply the best place to find high quality used books in the East Bay. But for others Moe’s is far more than a bookstore: it is the living memory of Morris “Moe” Moskowitz, legendary bookseller, pool player, cigar smoker and crowd pleaser extraordinaire.  

Approaching the five-year anniversary of his death at the age of 75 on April 1, 1997, his memory, like his beloved bookstore, is still very much alive and well. 

“He trusted people and knew how to work to their strengths,” said 22-year Moe’s employee Laura Tibbals. “Plus he worked hard. He plunged the toilet.” 

He also revolutionized the way used books were sold.  

Before Moe’s, used book sellers paid just pennies for books and then jacked up the prices considerably. “Consequently, they didn’t have very good books,” said poet and long time Moe’s employee Bill Owen. Moskowitz changed all that in the early 60’s by offering 50% of a book’s cover price for a customer wanting payment in trade, and 30% for cash. Almost immediately, Owen says, the books started flowing in and Moe’s took off.  

Customers who take their payment in trade, still receive green “Moe Dollars” featuring a top hatted, cigar smoking caricature of Moscowitz and the words “In God and Moe we Trust.”  

An old communist from NewYork, Moskowitz’s business practices- good wages and benefits (including a four day work week and pension plan), fair prices, both in buying and selling of books, and an unflappable preoccupation for doing right by his workers and customers- nurtured staff and customer loyalty.  

If a customer showed up at the register with a new book, and Moskowitz knew the store had a used copy for much cheaper, he’d tell them where it was, or even go get it for them. Policies like that earned the loyalty of customer’s like Dave Brewer, a retired sociology professor from Fresno who’s been coming to Moe’s since 1964.  

And though Moskowitz died nearly five years ago, you wouldn’t know it from the change in staff- most of the 25 to 30 staff members on board now were hired under his watch. Half have been then longer than 10 years, and several longer than twenty. “A lot of people will work here until the day they die,” said Tibbals. 

“Moe was a real communist with a sense of fairness,” added Ken Eastman who has worked in Moe’s fine book section for the past eight years. “If you weren’t messing up, you were employed for life.”  

On Moskowitz’s death, ownership passed on to his daughter and ex-wife, Barabara. The former Mrs. Moskowitz, who recently passed away, was also known for her generosity.  

Not much, customers and staff said, has changed at Moe’s. “We were all worried it would go down hill, but it’s as well stocked as ever,” said Tibbals. 

What the staff misses terribly, of course, is Moskowitz. 

“He made working seem like a party,” said Owen.  

The stocky, balding Moskowitz was known for his sense of humor and outrageous antics like singing along to his favorite Pakistani music or lighting up his cigar in flagrant violation of Berkeley’s no smoking ordinance. A customer not in the know would flash him a dirty look to which he’d respond with a redition of “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes,” and eventually, the police would show up. “It was great theater,” said Owen. 

When Moscowitz’s died of heart failure on April Fool’s Day, “a lot of people didn’t believe it” said Don Frew, employee of the Shambala buddhist bookstore next door to Moe’s. “They thought it was a joke.”  

As the news sunk in, it was met by a spontaneous outpouring of grief. Frew watched from the Shambala window as flowers and offerings sprang up in front of the shop on Telegraph. “I heard this low grumbling sound, looked out, and saw naked bodies wailing and throwing themselves against the windows.” 

They were members of the Berkeley Naked Art Players, performing an elaborate mourning dance to the gurgling drones of a didgeridoo. 

“I don’t think the staff or family appreciated it much,” but, Frew added, it was emblematic of how deeply people cared about the cantankerous old book seller.  

Mayor Shirly Dean went on to officially decree April 20, 1997 as “Moe’s Day” in Berkeley, “the city that he loved and that in turn loved him.” U.S. Poet Laureate and Berkeley Professor eulogized him on NPR. And his friends, family, staff and customers held a memorial on Telegraph, closing off the street in his honor. 

Amidst the delicate Japanese silk wall hangings at Shambala’s, a prominently displayed commemorative photo of Moskowitz, ubiquitous cigar in hand, grins out from above the cash register. He shares a shelf with photos of two revered Tibetan Lamas and Shambala’s founder Sam Bercholz. 

“Moe was a very generous person” said Shambala owner Philip Barry. In 1968 Moscowitz gave Shambala a small space in his original bookstore, and in 1969 gave it the start up money to expand into its own space next door.  

“Generous, but not a sucker,” said Barry. Shambala later went on to become one of the country foremost publishers of Buddhist books. “He was a very savvy business man.” 

“It still feels like he’s here,” said Berry, even five years after his death. “His presence was that strong.”  

 

 


’Jackets pound Richmond into submission

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Thursday March 28, 2002

The Berkeley High baseball team was counting on an easy win against Richmond on Wednesday, and that’s exactly what the ’Jackets got, a 15-0 drubbing that lasted just 4 1/2 innings thanks to the “slaughter rule.” 

Three Berkeley pitchers, two of whom were pitching for the first time this season, combined to give up just three hits as the ’Jackets simply overpowered their opponent. Sophomore Walker Toma was particularly impressive, striking out five in his two innings of work, and seniors Lee Franklin and Raymond Pinkston both looked fairly solid in their rare stints on the mound. 

“It’s nice to know we can have Lee and Ray come in and throw strikes if we need them to,” Berkeley head coach Tim Moellering said. “It’s always good to have people to eat up innings if you need them.” 

Moellering sat most of his starters against the Oilers, who didn’t win an ACCAL game last season, including the heart of his lineup, sluggers Clinton Calhoun, Matt Toma and Jeremy LeBeau. Franklin got an unexpected start on the mound when Toma showed up late for warmups, although he didn’t seem to thrilled about it. 

“I was expecting to sit in the dugout all game long,” Franklin said. “I didn’t even bring my game cleats. I had to use my practice cleats out there.” 

Franklin, Berkeley’s leadoff hitter and second baseman, managed to push through his footwear issues to allow just one hit and strike out two Oilers. Pinkston threw the final inning, shaking off a shot off of his kneecap by the first batter he faced to induce a double-play ball and strike out the final batter. 

Wednesday’s win was also a chance for Moellering to get Jeremy Riesenfeld a complete game behind the plate. After suffering an elbow injury early last season, Riesenfeld has gone through two surgeries and is just now getting his arm strength near 100 percent. The senior caught all five innings for the ’Jackets making two throws to first on dropped third strikes. Although he didn’t get a chance to throw very hard, the game was a confidence-builder for Riesenfeld. 

“I get a little more comfortable every day,” Riesenfeld said. “Hopefully I’ll get some time in a more competitive game so I can really test it out. That should help me get over the tentativeness on my throws.” 

The Berkeley offense dinked and dunked its way to 15 runs in four innings, getting just two extra-base knocks out of 14 hits. They also drew three walks from Richmond starter Don Fountila and were the beneficiaries of four Oiler errors, as well as several other shaky defensive plays. Centerfielder Jonathon Smith led the way with three hits, and seven ’Jackets had at least one RBI, with Riesenfeld and Sean Souders knocking in two runs apiece. 

“The thing about our team is that we’re very deep,” Moellering said. “We know that no matter who’s in there, we’re going to hit the ball and play well.”


Library Gardens is designed safe

John H. DeClercq for Library Gardens, L.P.
Thursday March 28, 2002

Editor: 

 

The Library Gardens project is designed with an eye toward pedestrian safety inside and out. Misinformation was recently repeated in “Library Gardens Not In Sync…,” that pedestrian safety was not considered in the design of the Library Gardens project.  

This is not the case. The 2020 Kittredge Street Parking Garage (Hinks) will be demolished this summer, and replaced immediately thereafter with a new 3-level garage, which will be safer and more efficient for parkers, pedestrians, as well as for the neighborhood. 

For 10 years, I have been on the sidewalks of Kittredge, Milvia and Shattuck in the mornings, at noontime, and after school lets out, in and around the students.  

We are very concerned about student safety, as well as the safety of other visitors in the downtown area. Kids will be kids.  

They don’t pay attention to cars. They think they’re invincible. But, our drivers in and around the downtown drive very safely. They move slowly and carefully. 

There has not been an auto/pedestrian accident in the area.  

For years, students left the campus at the gateway on Milvia, at the foot of Kittredge. Only recently has this gateway been closed due to construction (and now, temporarily, the students are walking up Allston to the downtown). Of the 3,500 students who attend Berkeley High, every noon, 1,000 go into Civic Center park - 1,000 stream up to Shattuck. 

Students in and around the downtown are an everyday occurrence. Visitors who drive in the downtown are well aware that they need to move slowly and carefully. And they do. In the mornings, parents drive north/south on Milvia or east/west on Allston , and drop off their children, and the kids cross the street to the campus. This has been a common occurrence before, during and, we expect, after construction. But this drop-off traffic on Milvia and Allston has nothing to do with the parking garage. There are no drop offs of students near the garage entrances. (Recently, parents petitioned the Council to paint a loading zone on the curb on Milvia to accommodate this practice.) Many drop offs still occur near the intersection of Bancroft and Milvia, near the gyms. The student drop off traffic in the morning is distant from cars entering the garage. 

The garage morning traffic consists of many YMCA members who come to the downtown for an early workout. "Y" members generally are very heads up, aware, safe, and courteous. There have been no morning accidents. Other traffic in and around the garage consist of the post office trucks who back in and out of the loading dock at the rear of the main post office that faces Kittredge Street. Post office drivers are very cautious and courteous. There have been no incidents. 

The Library Gardens project is very much in sync with the neighborhood. The area consists of bold, strong, robust buildings that stand shoulder-to-shoulder in civic urban life. The neighbors in the apartments across the street have welcomed the project. Civic leaders in the library have welcomed the Library Gardens project (they can hardly wait to issue new library cards to all the new downtown residents). 

 

Among other safety measures, traffic entering and exiting the new garage is being disbursed half on Kittredge and half on Bancroft. Currently, all visitors enter on Kittredge, and (except for special circumstances), all visitors exit on Kittredge. The new garage is designed with an automatic gate for monthly parkers and residents to enter and exit on Bancroft, visitors will continue to enter and exit on Kittredge. The Kittredge entrance will have 3 lanes, one for entry, two for exiting (a left-hand only and a right-hand only exit lane). These traffic controls were considered by the City, and their safety recommendations have been incorporated. Many safety details will be constructed to maximize the customer-friendly, safe and welcoming environment of the soon-to-be-built new 2020 Kittredge Street Parking Garage at the Library Gardens Apartments project. 

Our on-site management is always available to respond to customer concerns. Visitor safety in/around, inside/outside of the Garage, has always been, and will continue to be, of paramount concern. Comments and suggestions from the public are welcome. Please feel free to drop by at any time with your suggestions. 

 

 

John H. DeClercq 

for Library Gardens, L.P. 


Finding a youthful take on life as ‘Oklahoma’s’ Aunt Eller

By Michael Kuchwara The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

NEW YORK — Quick. Think of Aunt Eller, the matriarchal heart of “Oklahoma!”, and you probably will conjure up the image of an older pioneer woman, wearing a gray bun and churning butter. 

“I do churn butter,” says Andrea Martin with a laugh, describing the memorable opening moments of the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical when Aunt Eller sits alone on stage and Curly warbles (from the wings) “Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’.” 

“And I guess if the producers had their way, I would wear a gray bun. But I’m not 60. Who are we kidding? When you hire me, you are going to get somebody with a youthful energy, a youthful body and a youthful take on life.” 

From Betty Garde in the original 1943 production to Charlotte Greenwood in the movie version to Mary Wickes in the last Broadway revival (which was in 1979), Aunt Eller usually has been more matronly than modern. 

Not so Martin, who projects an exuberance and energy that, while remaining true to the ensemble nature of the show, helps lift the Royal National Theatre’s revival right off the stage of Broadway’s Gershwin Theatre. 

You wouldn’t expect anything less from a woman who was part of “SCTV Network,” the raucous, legendary television series from the late 1970s and early ’80s that helped launch such other genuine comics as Martin Short, John Candy and Rick Moranis. 

“But I also have many more years of experience than the kids in the show just because of the nature of how old I am,” says the actress, who, at 55, looks more like a sassy fortysomething — an Auntie Mame in training. 

Martin, her hair a mass of dark red ringlets matched by a stylish red jacket, sits in a conference room in producer Cameron Mackintosh’s office near the theater and talks about what goes into making Aunt Eller believable on stage. 

“I know what it is like to raise two boys as a single parent. I certainly know what it is to persevere and to have some kind of wisdom that you develop with age.” 

Martin played Ado Annie, the show’s flirtatious second female lead, years ago when she had just gotten out of college, but says she didn’t really remember the show when asked to do the latest revival. So she reread the script and viewed a tape of the London production. 

Not that she didn’t feel a little defensive about taking on the role, particularly after many of her California friends, from Tom Hanks to Steve Martin and more, told her that when they learned she was doing “Oklahoma!”, they assumed she was playing Ado Annie. 

“Most women my age think of themselves as 25,” the actress says. “They think of themselves as Ado Annie. 

“I thought, ‘Well, people do have a preconceived idea about Aunt Eller, but maybe by the end of it, they will think differently,”’ she says. Director Trevor Nunn helped a lot. 

“Trevor has absolutely no ego agenda,” Martin explains. “He comes with a kind of nonjudgmental approach to acting. It doesn’t mean he has no ideas, but you feel very cared for and respected. It’s been a real collaboration.” 

Martin, who makes her home in Los Angeles, has been fortunate in her New York stage appearances, at least in getting recognition for her work. She made her Broadway debut in 1992 in a musical version of “My Favorite Year.” The show didn’t last long, but the actress won a Tony Award. Other Tony nominations followed when she appeared in revivals of “She Loves Me” (1994) and “Candide” (1997). 

“I have never played a part that didn’t solicit great applause and great laughter and have great star turns,” she says contemplating her career. ”‘Oklahoma!’ is an adjustment for me, but it is for this reason that I wanted to do it. 

“I wanted to see if I could bring a genuine authenticity to this part without getting that kind of response. Would I be able to — at the end of the evening — know internally that I did a good job without hearing from an audience that I was doing it? That is a very big challenge for somebody who has done comedy all their lives.” 

In 1999, Martin did the workshop productions of “Seussical,” playing the Cat in the Hat. By the time the musical arrived in New York the following year, she had dropped out. With David Shiner as her replacement, “Seussical” proved to be a highly publicized flop in New York. 

“My last son was home for only one more year (before going to college) and every time I thought of myself on stage being the Cat in the Hat, the thought that I would be missing his prom or his football games — I couldn’t see myself doing it.” 

“Turning down “Seussical” was a difficult but right decision, she says. 

“I got to spend a year with my son. And then the day I put him on a plane to college, I got a phone call about ’Oklahoma!”’ 

——— 

On the Net: 

http://www.oklahoma-themusical.com 


Compiled by Guy Poole
Thursday March 28, 2002


Thursday, March 28

 

 

Seed Swap 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Ecology Center 

2530 San Pablo Ave. 

Bay Area Seed Interchange Library's annual Seed Swap. Bring seed and envelopes. A raffle for live plants. 823-4769. 

 


Friday, March 29

 

 

City Commons Club 

12:30 p.m. 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Peter Hillier, assistant city manager, transportation; “Bringing About a Paradigm Shift.” $1. 848-3533. 

 

Berkeley Women in Black 

noon - 1 p.m. 

Bancroft and Telegraph Ave. 

Standing in solidarity with Israeli and Palestinian women to urge an end to the occupation and push the peace process forward. 548-6310, wibberkeley.org. 

 


Saturday, March 30

 

 

Keep Kids Street Safe 

1:30 - 4 p.m. 

YWCA 

1515 Franklin St., Oakland 

A national campaign helping keep children safe and healthy. Highlights include food, prizes and music. 530-1319, compeace@concentric.net 

 


Monday, April 1

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Saturday, April 6

 

 

Library Grand Opening 

1 p.m. 

Berkeley Public Library 

The celebration will include a ribbon cutting ceremony, a keynote speech by Alice Walker, musical guests, and building tours. 548-7102 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 - 11 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class in basic personal preparedness for emergency situations. 981-5605 

 


Monday, April 8

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Tuesday, April 9

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Thursday, April 11

 

 

Bicycle Maintenance 101 

7 p.m. 

REI 

1338 San Pablo Ave. 

Rodian Magri will teach participants how to perform basic adjustments on their bikes to keep them in good working condition. 527-7377  

 


Saturday, April 13

 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 a.m. - 1 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class disaster mental health. 981-5605 

 


Monday, April 15

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Tuesday, April 16

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Thursday, April 18

 

 

Walking in the Footsteps of John Muir 

7 p.m. 

REI 

1338 San Pablo Ave. 

Cherry Good gives a slide lecture sharing highlights from her journey to find out what she could about John Muir. 527-7470 

 


Monday, April 22

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Tuesday, April 23

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 


Study shows six period move at BHS won’t hurt too much

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Thursday March 28, 2002

Most of the courses available at Berkeley High School this year will be available next year, despite the move from a seven- to a six-period day, according to a new study conducted by former BHS computer science teacher Peter Bloomsburgh. 

Some parents, however, are still upset with the shift, approved by the Board of Education earlier this year. They argue that the shift will involve unacceptable cuts to a successful double-period science program and reduce the number of electives available to students, while saving the financially-strapped district only a small amount of money. 

Superintendent Michele Lawrence said the six-period day and increased class sizes at BHS will save approximately $300,000 for the district, which faces an estimated $5.4 million deficit next year.  

But she said the shift will increase students’ class time by moving from 47- to 55-minute periods and improve discipline by eliminating gaps in students’ schedules — so they aren’t wandering around campus during free periods. 

The study 

Working with BHS administrators, Bloomsburgh took students’ schedules from this year and plugged them into a proposed six-period schedule for next year. In doing so, he found that 198 of the roughly 3,000 students (7 percent) would face scheduling conflicts under the new schedule.  

Consequently, Bloomsburgh said if the district tightens the schedule and moves forward with a plan to offer some 900 students an opportunity to take electives outside the normal six-period day, BHS should be able to offer students most of the courses they are taking this year. 

Lawrence said the study re-affirmed her argument that the shift to a six-period day, while leading to the reduction of some electives, will not require wholesale cuts to any department. 

“I don’t see that any program is going to be decimated or eliminated,” said Lawrence, attempting to allay concerns that arts, African-American Studies and other electives will sustain significant hits. 

 

Lawrence said students’ course choices for next year, which should be complete in two weeks, will help the district decide where to make reductions. 

 

Science cuts 

One place where reductions will almost certainly take place is the science department. Starting next year the district will make significant cuts to its unique double-period science program. 

According to BHS co-principal Laura Leventer, students in standard science courses will be in class one period per day rather than two. But Leventer added, the science department has requested funding from the Berkeley Schools Excellence Project (a special local tax) to pay for one extra period per week for some of those standard courses. 

Students in advanced placement courses will attend an extra period of instruction every other day, Leventer added. 

Science teachers have fought against any reductions in double-period science in recent months. But with cuts clearly in the cards the department will take whatever extra periods it can get, said BHS chemistry teacher Aaron Glimme. 

“I think we’re maintaining what I would consider the bare minimum to keep our program going,” he added. 

But Derick Miller, president of the PTA Council, an umbrella group for the PTAs districtwide, said the extra periods, dedicated to the most advanced students, do not serve the average pupil. 

“We’re abandoning the interests of the students in the middle,” he said. 

 

Equal teaching loads 

Lawrence has argued that a compelling argument for the reduction in double-period science is the equalization of instructors’ teaching loads. Currently, science teachers, because they instruct the same group of students two periods in a row, see less students in a given day than other teachers. 

The move to single-period science, Lawrence said, would spread out the teaching load, and provide students in other classes with more attention from their instructors. 

But Glimme noted that other teachers will see only modest reductions in their teaching loads.  

Some parents add that student success in the double-period science course should outweigh concerns about teaching loads. 

“Are our schools built on teacher equity or student achievement?,” asked Laura Menard, a member of the PTA Council. 

But, Lawrence said a uniform approach to teaching loads is a necessary first step toward other long-term reforms, such as a shift to a “block schedule” at the high school that could reduce workloads for all teachers. 

 

 

 

 

 


Pro-Israeli mania endangers us all

Jeff Winkler Fairfield
Thursday March 28, 2002

Editor: 

 

Pro-Israel mania is endangering us all. The Israel-Palestinian conflict and the events of September 11 are connected.  

Israel’s seizure of Palestinian land produced much resentment among Palestinians. Substantial U.S. backing of Israel, fueled by passionate pro-Israelism here, extended that resentment to the U.S. Such a culture of terrorism ensued among Palestinians in their long, unfortunate reaction to their victimization that it spread extensively in the Arab world.  

The resentments intensified into a hatred of America, as well as Israel, that prompted the terrible attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. It must be realized, then, that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not merely a far-away concern of other people, but something which severely threatens and, therefore must concern, all Americans. 

Half a century ago we paid a staggering price for having left Germany to indulge in unbridled nationalistic passion. Then we immediately made the same mistake with another people, the Jews. We did not learn a simple lesson of history and, so, we repeated it. Now we are paying again. 

Israel began this conflict. Israel usurped Palestinian land and continues to hold it. Palestinian violence is deplorable, but the fact of Israel’s original, and, therefore greater, fault remains. 

The people of Israel must give back to the Palestinians the land that they took. This is necessary for their moral redemption, for peace in the region and for the removal of a major impetus for terrorism. 

 

Jeff Winkler 

Fairfield


Seven local firefighters to be honored in state memorial

By Jia-Rui Chong Daily Planet staff
Thursday March 28, 2002

Seven Berkeley firefighters will be honored in a memorial that will be unveiled next week commemorating California firefighters killed in the line of duty. 

The memorial in Capitol Park, Sacramento will feature a wall inscribed with the names of 855 firefighters and two bronze statue groups.  

The statues were cast at Massi Artworks, a foundry in Berkeley. 

The timing of the project’s completion, only six months after the events of Sept. 11, makes the memorial particularly emotional, said Bill Ortman, whose father, Charles Ortman, is one of the firefighters to be honored. 

“It was started before Sept. 11, but now it’s more important after all of those firemen were killed. Being a fireman is finally being recognized as the job of heroes. It used to be, ‘Oh, you’re a fireman. What’s the big deal?’” said Bill. 

Berkeley Fire Capt. Gil Dong, who is one of the Bay Area’s representatives to the statewide organization California Professional Firefighters, said the effect of so many deaths in New York can still be seen in the Berkeley fire stations.  

“The number of people killed in New York was three times our department as a whole, so it’s like losing the department three times,” Dong said. 

“You see people depressed, quiet, keeping to themselves. You have to keep reminding them to talk about their feelings, tell their loved ones that they love them.” 

This memorial is another way to deal with the grief, said Dong, who worked with CPF to create the memorial. 

“For me it’s like seeing the Vietnam Memorial and the Korean Memorial in [Washington] D.C. As firefighters, on a day-to-day basis, we accept the possibility that we may not be here tomorrow. So I think it’s important to think that someone remembers that you gave your life to keep the community safe,” said Dong. 

Bill, 82, still vividly remembers his father Charles’s inspirational sense of duty. A bell used to ring all the time in the Ortman house, tapping out the number of the firebox that had been pulled. 

Bill said the blaze that killed his father in 1939 occurred across from their home. After pulling out two children and the old man who started the fire by smoking in a closet, Charles had gone back in. 

“He must have inhaled smoke, because he staggered out and then he died,” said Bill. 

The funeral was the biggest funeral in the city of Berkeley at the time, Bill said. He is proud that another organization is honoring his father’s 20 years of work. 

“I would love to go see the memorial, but, health-wise I can’t. I’m hoping I can get over it so I can go,” said Bill. 

Dong said that about a dozen firefighters are planning to attend the April 6 opening to remember Berkeley’s firefighting history. In addition to Ortman, the other Berkeley honorees are James Kenney, G. Sydney Rose, Ernest Maxwell, John Ray Hutton, Edward P. Clarridge and Jack Alan Rinne. 

The $2 million memorial was funded by the California Fire Foundation, contributions from firefighters’ unions, special firefighters’ license plates, and a state tax check-off. 

A golf tournament fundraiser in the Bay Area in 1999 that netted $12,000 was one of the main contributions, said Dong.


Today in History

Staff
Thursday March 28, 2002

Thursday, March 28 is the 87th day of 2002. There are 278 days left in the year. 

 

Highlight in History: 

On March 28, 1969, the 34th president of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, died in Washington at age 78. 

 

On this date: 

In 1834, the U.S. Senate voted to censure President Jackson for the removal of federal deposits from the Bank of the United States. 

In 1854, during the Crimean War, Britain and France declared war on Russia. 

In 1898, the Supreme Court ruled that a child born in the United States to Chinese immigrants was a U.S. citizen. 

In 1939, the Spanish Civil War ended as Madrid fell to the forces of Francisco Franco. 

In 1930, the names of the Turkish cities of Constantinople and Angora were changed to Istanbul and Ankara. 

In 1941, novelist and critic Virginia Woolf died in Lewes, England. 

In 1942, during World War II, British naval forces raided the Nazi-occupied French port of St. Nazaire. 

In 1943, composer Sergei Rachmaninoff died in Beverly Hills, Calif. 

In 1953, athlete Jim Thorpe died in Lomita, California. 

In 1979, America’s worst commercial nuclear accident occurred inside the Unit 2 reactor at the Three Mile Island plant near Middletown, Pennsylvania. 

Ten years ago: Democrats Bill Clinton and Jerry Brown clashed over Brown’s flat-tax proposal, with Clinton charging the plan would hurt the poor, and Brown accusing Clinton of inventing “another big lie.” 

Five years ago: A medical examiner revealed that some members of the Heaven’s Gate cult who’d committed suicide in a California mansion had also been castrated in apparent pursuit of the group’s ideal of androgynous immortality. 

One year ago: A federal appeals court in San Francisco threw out a record $107 million verdict against anti-abortion activists, ruling that a Web site and wanted posters branding abortion doctors “baby butchers” and criminals were protected by the First Amendment. The authors of a book on the Oklahoma City bombing revealed that during prison interviews, Timothy McVeigh had shown no remorse for what happened, and called the 19 children who died “collateral damage.” 

 

 

Today’s Birthdays: Former White House national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski is 74. Sen. Frank Murkowski (R-Alaska) is 69. Country musician Charlie McCoy is 61. Movie director Mike Newell is 60. Actress Conchata Ferrell is 59. Actor Ken Howard is 58. Actress Dianne Wiest is 54. Rhythm-and-blues musician Milan Williams (The Commodores) is 54. Country singer Reba McEntire is 47. Actress Tracey Needham (“The Division”) is 35. Actor Max Perlich is 34. Rapper Salt (Salt-N-Pepa) is 33. Actor Vince Vaughn is 32. Rapper Mr. Cheeks (Lost Boyz) is 31. Actor Ken L. (“The Parkers”) is 29. Actress Julia Stiles is 21.


Actor Dudley Moore dies at 66

By Jeff WilsonThe Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Actor Dudley Moore, who became an unlikely Hollywood heartthrob as a cuddly pipsqueak in the movies ”10” and “Arthur,” died Wednesday at home in New Jersey. He was 66. 

Moore died at 11 a.m. EST, said publicist Michelle Bega in Los Angeles. The British-born actor died of pneumonia as a complication of progressive supranuclear palsy, a brain disorder similar to Parkinson’s disease, she said. 

Moore, who received a best-actor Oscar nomination for “Arthur,” was surrounded by friends and medical aides when he died. “It’s a terrible condition, and he fought as hard as he could,” said Rena Fruchter, who was helping care for Moore in Plainfield, N.J. 

Moore spoke about the toll of his disorder in a December 2000 interview. 

“It’s totally mysterious the way this illness attacks, and eats you up, and then spits you out,” he told the British Broadcasting Corp. 

“There’s always this feeling of ‘Why did it hit me?’ and I cannot make peace with it because I know I am going to die from it,” he said. 

“Yes I feel angry, that’s true — to be reduced to this insignificant version of myself is overpowering.” 

A pianist, Moore said at the time that music had become his comfort, “But it is difficult to know that all the keys are there to be played and I can’t play them.” 

The 1979 film “10” established Moore and actress Bo Derek as Hollywood stars. A light sex comedy, it became a cultural phenomenon, with Moore portraying a 40ish songwriter who suddenly meets the girl of his dreams. 

“I loved him,” Derek told Fox News after word of his death. “I adored him as everyone did who met him.” 

I wasn’t special in that respect. He just had a wonderful, magical quality. He was hilariously funny and then at the same time very sensitive, very dear.” 

Two years later, Moore had another hit: “Arthur,” playing a rich drunk who falls for Liza Minnelli. Moore’s Academy Award nomination did not pan out, but co-star John Gielgud, who played his snooty but caring butler, won the supporting actor Oscar. 

That marked the peak of Moore’s film career, though he made several more films including a sequel to “Arthur” in 1988. 

He confessed to being driven by feelings of inferiority about his working-class origins in Dagenham, east London, and because of his height of 5 feet, 2 1/2 inches. In later life he also spoke of the pain of being rejected by his mother because he was born with a deformed left foot. 

Comedians, he said in an interview with Newsday in 1980, are often driven by such feelings. “I certainly did feel inferior. Because of class. Because of strength. Because of height. ... I guess if I’d been able to hit somebody in the nose, I wouldn’t have been a comic,” he said. 

Music was Moore’s entree into public performance, first as a chorister and organist in his parish church in Dagenham, near London, and then in 1960 as a young Oxford graduate recruited for the hit four-man comedy review “Beyond the Fringe.” 

“Fringe” played two years in London and then moved to Broadway. Moore was teamed with Alan Bennett, later a successful playwright; Jonathan Miller, the cerebral opera producer and medical doctor, and Peter Cook, a surreal comic talent. 

Moore and Cook formed a fast friendship and later teamed on television as Dud and Pete on “Not Only ... but Also,” a sketch comedy series. They also plumbed the depths of taste and decency in a series of recordings as “Derek and Clive.” 

Cook and Moore made their screen debuts in “The Wrong Box” in 1966, and followed up the next year with another success, “Bedazzled.” 

Moore wrote, starred and composed the score for his next film, ”30 is a Dangerous Age, Cynthia,” in 1968. 

Moore and Cook teamed again in 1971 for a comedy review titled “Beyond the Fridge,” which was a success in London and a smash on Broadway in the 1973-74 season, with the pair winning a special Tony award for their “unique contribution to the theater of comedy.” 

Cook returned to England but Moore settled in Southern California, where he met the director Blake Edwards in a therapy group. When George Segal walked out of Edwards’ production of ”10,” the director turned to Moore. 

Music remained part of Moore’s life, both as a jazz pianist and as a parodist. 

“I can’t imagine not having music in my life, playing for myself or for other people. If I was asked, ’Which would you give up,’ I’d have to say acting,” he said in an interview with The Associated Press in 1988. 

Last June he received the Commander of the British Empire award from Queen Elizabeth II. 

Moore married Suzy Kendall in 1958, Tuesday Weld in 1975, Brogan Lane in 1988 and Nicole Rothschild in 1994. He had a son, Patrick, by his second marriage and a son, Nicholas, by his fourth. 

In addition to his sons, Moore is survived by a sister, Barbara Stevens of Great Britain. 


Ask the Rent Board

By Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board Staff
Thursday March 28, 2002

Question: 

Our landlady lives nearby and constantly stops by unannounced. She seems well meaning, but we really don’t want anyone coming over without calling first. What can we do? 

 

 

Answer: 

I’m not sure what you mean by "stops by." If she enters your apartment without permission or without cause, then she is violating the law. California law states that a landlord can enter a rental unit only for the following reasons: 

• In an emergency; 

• When the tenant has moved out or abandoned the unit; 

• To make necessary or agreed-upon repairs, decorations, alterations, or other improvements; 

• To show the rental unit to prospective tenants, buyers, or lenders, or to provide entry to repair persons who are to perform work on the unit; or 

• Under a court order. 

Except in cases of emergency or abandonment, a landlord must give a tenant reasonable advance notice before entering, which is presumed to be 24 hours notice, and can enter only during normal business hours (generally, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on weekdays). You have the right to refuse entry if it is not for one of the specified reasons, and if notice is required but not given. 

If your landlady just comes to the property or your doorstep without entering your apartment and you find this intrusive, you should ask her to stop. Ask your landlady politely to call before she comes by, and tell her you may not always have time for her. If the unwanted behavior continues, put your request in writing. If this doesn’t take care of the problem, a lawyer can tell you if her actions rise to the level of harassment or breach of the covenant of quiet enjoyment (the right to enjoy your home free from interference by the landlord) implied in every lease. 

 

 

 

Question: 

Two months ago I purchased a 4-unit apartment building. The tenants in apartment A now claim that they have been overcharged for the past year and a half. I haven’t raised their rent since I bought it, but when I checked with the Rent Board, I was told their rent does exceed the lawful rent ceiling for the unit. If I simply continued collecting what the previous owner charged, without knowing it was illegally high, am I liable to the tenants for the overcharges? Am I responsible for the previous owner’s overcharges? 

 

 

Answer: 

You are liable for overcharges collected during your ownership, even if you weren’t aware that the rent exceeded the ceiling. You are jointly liable with the former owner for overcharges he collected. If this matter is not resolved informally, the tenants may file a Rent Board petition for a refund of overcharges against you and the former owner. Since you are jointly liable, if the former owner ignores the petition, or if the tenants file against you only, and they prove their claim, you will be responsible for refunding the entire amount of overcharges. Your recourse against the former owner would then be to sue him for reimbursement of excess rent that he collected. By the way, most Berkeley realtors obtain rent ceiling information from the Rent Board before advising their clients to purchase investment property. 

 

 

You can e-mail the City of Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board at rent@ci. berkeley.ca.us with your questions, or you can call or visit the office at 2125 Milvia Street, Berkeley, CA. 94704 Our telephone number is (510) 644-6128. Our Web site address is www.ci.berkeley.ca.us/rent/.


Jewish community splits in its opinions on Intifada, Israel

By Matthew Artz Special to the Daily Planet
Thursday March 28, 2002

Lincoln Shlensky considers himself a Zionist with a strong connection to the state of Israel. But when he attends meetings of the Jewish Community Relations Committee (JCRC), a mainstream pro-Israel organization, he can’t help but feel a little defensive.  

As a founding member of A Jewish Voice For Peace, the Bay Area’s leading Jewish organization critical of Israeli polices, an executive board member of University chapter of Hillel, and a member of the JCRC, Shlensky is a rarity among local Jews — a bridge in a community that has become increasingly divided since the Intifada erupted in September 2000. 

“There is certainly more tension among Jews since the Intifada broke out,” said Shlensky. “The polarization that has occurred in Israel is happening among local Jews as well.” 

From the signing of the Oslo Peace Accords in 1993 through the failed peace negotiations at Camp David in 2000, most disagreements on Israeli policies were muted due to the general consensus among local Jews that the peace process was working and eventually there would be a two-state solution to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.  

When those talks broke down amidst an outbreak of violence, a wedge was driven between those in the local Jewish community who felt the need to speak out against an Israeli position they saw as extreme and unjust, and others who blamed the Palestinian leadership for the negotiation’s failure and considered it imperative to support Israel now that the Jewish state seemed threatened. 

David Cooper, spiritual leader for the Kahila Community Synagogue, said much of the current differences in opinion emanate from the same sadness and frustration felt among nearly all local Jews about the peace process’ breakdown.  

“Some people have become more concerned with the sense of security of the Israelis, and some are more concerned with the sense of Palestinian frustration,” said Cooper 

For Laurie Polster, member of A Jewish Voice for Peace, the Intifada was a call to action. “When the Intifada broke out a lot more progressive Jews started becoming active, and I knew that I had to be out there.” 

Randy Barnes, watched in frustration at the demise of the Camp David negotiations, and the increase in pro-Palestinian activism on the UC Berkeley campus. He decided to take his own stand by becoming involved with the Israel Action Committee, the campus organization for promoting Israeli positions. 

The increasing split of opinions is not just a community-wide phenomenon. In some synagogues there has been increased polarization among the congregants. Jim Sinkinson, chairman of the Israel Committee at Congregation Beth-El, a Berkeley Reform Synagogue, has moderated two discussions on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict — one immediately following the beginning of the Intifada, and the other in autumn of 2001.  

“The opinions have become more polarized,” said Sinkinson, who concluded that although the views expressed on each side are quite diverse, a majority of those in attendance supported current Israeli policy as a means of self-defense, while a minority criticized Israel for oppressing another people. 

Even if the frustration among local Jews is derived from a common source, there are numerous disagreements between those on both sides of the debate, and among allies as to why the peace process failed and how Israel should deal with the new situation.  

Polster considers the peace offer submitted by former President Bill Clinton at Camp David and agreed to by former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak to be “hardly just and equitable.” 

Citing provisions that would have provided Israel with a security corridor and water rights, Polster said: “There was absolutely no way the Palestinians could have created a viable state, and if there is to be peace that has to happen.”  

Polster opposes the policies of the current Israeli government, and is supporting A Jewish Voice for Peace’s campaign to end U.S. military aid to Israel, an outcome she considers to be in Israel’s best interests.  

“I’m trying to cleanse the cancer so that Israel will evolve, shed its militarism and become a humaNe member of world society.” 

Randy Barnes sees the issues differently. He credits Barak with having the courage to cross cultural red lines in Israeli society during the Camp David negotiations, and criticizes Palestinian Authority Chairman Yassir Arafat for not only failing to reciprocate, but for using violence in an attempt to improve his negotiating position.  

The refugee issue, contested so hotly during the Camp David negotiations, is a red light to Barnes.  

“One cannot reasonably expect Israel to allow the children and grandchildren of refugees to return when they are inherently hostile, and directly threaten the stability of the nation itself.” 

With regard to the ongoing violence between Israelis and Palestinians, Barnes’ co-chairman at the Israel Action Committee, Oren Lazar, defends the right of Israelis to protect themselves from the threat of armed attackers. He says the occupation will remain an unfortunate necessity until a permanent two- state solution can be struck with a Palestinian side that respects Israel’s right to exist. 

The debate within the Jewish community not only centers around how Israel should handle the second Intifada, but on how the community should handle its plurality of opinions.  

Some have advocated a public forum, which would feature speakers explaining their opinions on the conflict.  

This almost came to fruition last August, when local synagogues, in conjunction with the JCRC, considered holding such a program at the Berkeley-Richmond Jewish Community Center.  

However, disagreements on how to have a balanced presentation, and a lack of sufficient time by some key participants, prevented the event from taking place. 

At a later meeting, it was decided not to pursue a community-wide forum at the present time, and instead it was decided that each synagogue should address the issues of the Intifada independently. 

Rabbi Stuart Kelman of Netivot Shalom prefers this tact. “It is safer to do this internally. “The multiplicity of opinions stems from the deep-seated love of Israel. When you love something as much as they do, you get emotional. I’d rather talk about these things around the kitchen table.” 

Cooper sees merit in a community forum. “The purpose would be not to defeat the other side but to be an advocate of your position and also hear the other positions and let them know that they were heard.”  

Cooper worries that currently people on the left wrongly assume that that those on the right have no concern for Palestinian rights, and those on the right wrongly assume that those on the left have no concern for the safety of Israelis. 

“People on both sides need to realize that those on the other side take a principled position,” said Cooper. 

Shlensky thinks local Jews could learn a lot from the vigorous debate that takes place in Israel. “There is a hesitance among Jews here to reveal the full range of their views,” said Shlensky who believes mainstream Jewish groups are concerned that a public display of diversity would be misconstrued as weakness. “Jews in the Bay Area should be represented as a people who have basic commonsense, who realize this is untenable, and that ultimately the two sides will work it out.”


Friends of Merced killer say he showed signs of depression

By Kim Baca The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

MERCED — Casey Simmons said she worried about her friend and employee, John Patrick Hogan, last year when he sent her an e-mail that may have indicated Hogan was in trouble. 

“Today is Bud’s birthday,” Hogan wrote on March 7, 2001, talking about his daughter Michelle’s fourth birthday. “I said goodbye for the last time and I probably won’t see her again.” 

“I thought he was going to harm himself,” Simmons said. “Never did it occur to me that he would hurt another human being.” 

Hogan, 49, a retired sheriff’s deputy, fatally shot his 5-year-old daughter and his three teen-age stepchildren before killing himself Tuesday while his ex-wife was jogging, investigators said. 

Police on Wednesday were still trying to piece together events that led to the brutal killing and determine how Hogan entered Christine McFadden’s house. A back door was open, but there were no signs of forced entry, police said. 

Police have not disclosed typed letters found in the master bedroom, but said Wednesday the letters detailed feelings Hogan had about his marriage and contained passages from the Bible. 

“He was upset and disgruntled about the marital breakup,” sheriff’s commander Mark Pazin said. “He was hoping there was going to be a reconciliation in their relationship. Evidently he realized that it was not going to happen.” 

Police were trying to contact Hogan’s family, but had only found a brother. Pazin said Hogan was originally from Santa Clara County. 

Calls to McFadden’s veterinary clinic were referred to her lawyer, Neil Morse, who did not immediately return calls Wednesday. 

Simmons said Hogan, despondent after the breakup of the marriage, quit working for her as a private investigator in February 2001. 

“He worked with hundreds of children charged with crimes,” said Simmons, a juvenile defense lawyer. “He’d spent a lot of time talking with the kids trying to help them.” 

In the past year, neighbors said they often saw Hogan carrying fishing gear, and that he could be seen with his daughter while packing a white plastic chair to take her on his fishing trips. Friends said Michelle, who died in her father’s arms, looked like her dad. She celebrated her fifth birthday three weeks ago. 

Hogan married McFadden in December 1995 two years after she divorced Thomas Willis, according to court documents. She claimed in an application for a restraining order against Hogan that he was verbally abusive and used foul language around the children, according to papers in Merced Family Law Court. 

McFadden had three children with Willis, Melanie, 17, Stanley, 15, and Stuart, 14, who were also killed by Hogan. 

Willis, who has two children from his current marriage, could not be reached for comment Wednesday. A call left for a family spokeswoman was not returned. 

Willis in 1996 filed a temporary restraining order against McFadden after he said McFadden had showed “an increasing pattern of aggressive behavior.” 

“She has no restraint and wants total involvement in my life, which causes me severe and emotional trauma and anxiety,” Willis wrote in court documents. “She will not leave me or my wife alone.” 

Hogan retired as a deputy in 1993 for undisclosed medical reasons after 10 years on the force, said Terrance Helm of the Santa Clara sheriff’s department. 


CA teachers launch network to share info on science education

By Michelle Morgante The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

SAN DIEGO — A network of science teachers representing each of California’s 12,500 public and private schools is being built to share information on science education and, organizers hope, strengthen the field for the future. 

The National Science Teachers Association launched its “Building a Presence for Science” program in California on Wednesday during a convention in San Diego. 

The program, already in place in 19 states and the District of Columbia, establishes a pyramid network of teachers and education officials who act as liaisons for their respective schools. 

In California, 300 educators are being chosen to serve as “key leaders.” Each of these will be assigned about two dozens schools and asked to enlist a teacher at each campus to serve as a “point of contact.” 

Currently, 160 “key leaders” have been selected, with at least one person from each county, organizers said. The goal is to have every school in the state connected to the network within three years, said Maria Alicia Lopez-Freeman, a University of California researcher who helped organize the program. 

The “Building a Presence” system has been used in other states to distribute the latest information on teaching methods, resources, and training opportunities to science teachers throughout the K-12 school system. 

“This helps us cast a wide net to teachers in every school,” said Nancy Taylor, San Diego County’s science education coordinator who is helping build the network. 

Until now, educators have had a “very antiquated way of communicating to teachers,” with photocopied mailings often ending up in the back of a teacher’s lesson planner, she said. The new system, which will rely largely on the Internet, “will change the way we’re doing business in the Information Age.” 

Each point-of-contact person will be responsible for providing science teachers in their respective schools with the information sent through the network, including resources to support the goals of national and state science education standards. It will be up to teachers and schools to fit the program to their specific needs. 

A key goal of program is to have elementary school teachers learn how to better incorporate science into other fields, such as a reading lesson. This is especially important for schools that are under pressure to increase student performance on state-mandated tests for literacy or math. 

Many schools are so focused on reading or math that they find it hard to make time for science, said Scott Hill, chief deputy superintendent for the California Department of Education. 

The “Building a Presence” program will show teachers “how to build into a reading program quality science instruction and practice using scientific inquiry.” 

The launch of the program in California is being supported by a $520,000 grant from the ExxonMobil Foundation. 

—- 

On the Net: 

http://www.nsta.org/bap 


Police unsure if suicide pact led to Santa Cruz beach deaths

By Jessica Brice The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

SANTA CRUZ — Investigators have identified the bodies of three people found on a cliff, but would not release their names until the relatives of all the victims were notified. 

The gunshot deaths of three Denver, Colo., residents could be the result of a double homicide and suicide, according to Santa Cruz County Coroner Steve Plaskett. 

The bodies of two women and a man were discovered around 6:30 Tuesday night on a bluff above secluded Bonny Doon Beach just north of Santa Cruz. Their identities were not released. 

The two women had been shot in the chest and the man in the head, said Santa Cruz County sheriffs spokesman Kim Allyn. A sleeping bag and a shotgun lay near the bodies, which were in a circle. There were no signs of struggle. 

Investigators believe the man, 26, was in control of the shotgun, Plaskett said. Both women were 20 years old. 

Investigators originally thought the deaths could be the result of a suicide pact but the history of the relationship between the three people does not support that theory, Plaskett said. Police did not find a suicide note by the bodies. 

The families of both women, who lived in Denver but had family in California, had been contacted by Wednesday evening. 

The public has free access to the roughly 6-mile-long privately owned beach, which is known for nude sunbathing and rave parties. 

“It’s not a cool thing when you come to see the sunset and you see this,” Cesar Pacheco, one of the passers-by who found the bodies, told the Santa Cruz Sentinel. 

Investigators remained at the scene overnight and removed the bodies using a pickup truck around noon Wednesday. They also towed from the beach’s parking lot a white car with Colorado license plates that may have belonged to one of the victims. 

The horseshoe-shaped beach, about 7 miles north of Santa Cruz, sits below two rocky bluffs. Authorities are called there periodically on reports of drug use, sexual assaults and violence. 

“In the past we’ve had homicides there, but not very many,” Allyn said. One unsolved case from the 1980s involved a shotgun slaying in the same parking lot near where the bodies were found Tuesday, he said. 

Most reports involve “parties and just some real dangerous drifters,” Allyn said. 

The property is owned by Coast Dairies and Land Company, a nonprofit corporation. 

A company spokesman said the beach is not subject to regular patrols, but isn’t a haven for law breakers. 

“It is not like it is a dangerous place,” said Coast Dairies land manager Bern Smith. “I see this as an isolated incident, which could have just as easily happened on another property.” 

Though they live a half-mile away, the closest neighbors said the beach is a constant problem. 

“People are always drinking and there are weird things going on,” said Debora Rivers, an artichoke farmer who lives north of the beach along Highway 1. “We stay away.” 


State bars 15 lawn herbicides, citing vegetable damage

The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

SACRAMENTO — California is banning the sale of 15 lawn herbicides, saying the accumulation of a particular chemical in compost can damage some vegetables. 

The broadleaf herbicide clopyralid holds little hazard for people, animals or most vegetation, the Department of Pesticide Regulation said Wednesday. 

However, it accumulates in lawn clippings that often are used in compost that can cause damage if it is applied to some vegetables, the department said. 

In California, nearly half the compost from garden clippings is used for agriculture, a $26.7 billion annual industry statewide. 

No crop damage has been reported in California, but the state of Washington recently banned some uses of clopyralid after it was linked to compost that damaged tomato plants. Some California composting facilities have recently reported detecting the chemical, as have facilities in Washington, Pennsylvania and New Zealand. 

Notices will go out Thursday to seven companies that market 15 lawn products containing clopyralid. The department is taking no action against other clopyralid products intended for use on farmland, range land and forest land. 

Sales could be banned in 30 days unless a company appeals. Companies also could opt to relabel their product for non-lawn use. 

Department Director Paul Helliker said California’s action reaffirms its support for composting as an alternative to depositing biodegradable waste in landfills. 

The department also is creating a committee including herbicide companies and composting facilities to study clopyralid’s use and regulation. 

The banned herbicides, and the companies that produce them, are: 

•The Andersons Lawn Fertilizer (Tee Time 18-5-9 With Millennium Ultra Herbicide, United Horticultural Supply Professional Turf Products 22-3-4 With Millennium Ultra, The Andersons Professional Turf Products 16-4-8 With Millennium Ultra Herbicide & PCSCU). 

• Dow AgroSciences LLC (Lontrel Turf and Ornamental, Lawn Fertilizer Plus Confront Weed Control, Turf Fertilizer Contains Confront, Confront) 

• Howard Johnson’s Enterprises Inc. (Howard Johnson’s Weed & Feed With Millennium Ultra). 

• Lebanon Chemical Corporation (Lebanon Proscape Homogeneous Fertilizer With Confront Herbicide Broadleaf Weed Control). 

• Lesco Inc. (Lesco Momentum Premium Weed & Feed). 

• Monterey Chemical Company (Millennium Ultra Selective Herbicide). 

• Riverdale Chemical Company (Riverdale Millennium Ultra Selective Herbicide, Riverdale Millennium Ultra Weed And Feed, Riverdale Trupower Selective Herbicide, Riverdale XRM-5202 TM Premium Weed And Feed).


California pit bull owner waives formal extradition in Nevada

By Lisa Snedeker The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

LAS VEGAS — A California man whose pit bulls allegedly attacked a neighbor was being returned to Fresno County, where he faces animal neglect charges, authorities said Wednesday. 

Michael Bryan, 46, of Squaw Valley, waived formal extradition when he appeared before Nye County Justice of the Peace Tina Brisebill in Pahrump, Nev., about 60 miles west of Las Vegas. 

“Four receiving officers arrived to pick him up at 11:45 a.m.,” deputy court clerk Lynn Ring said of the Fresno County authorities who were transporting Bryan. 

Bail remained at $100,000 on felony charges of animal neglect, Ring said. 

Bryan was arrested late Saturday at a Pahrump home, 450 miles away from Squaw Valley, Nye County Undersheriff Bill Weldon said. 

Four dogs were found in his custody, but it’s unclear if they are among the five animals that allegedly mauled Jorge Elizondo on March 2. 

Elizondo, 36, suffered more then 30 puncture wounds from head to toe when the dogs attacked him on Squaw Valley Road near his home. The dogs scattered when a neighbor fired a rifle at them, a sheriff’s report said. 

The pit bulls remained in the Nye County Animal Shelter on Wednesday. 

Fresno County animal control officers were scheduled Thursday to pick up the dogs that have been quarantined since Bryan’s arrest to return them to Squaw Valley, 25 miles east of Fresno, authorities said. 

Under Nevada law, dogs involved in bite cases must be quarantined. 

A warrant was issued for Bryan’s arrest Friday, almost three weeks after he took his dogs and left town, Fresno authorities said. 

Bryan initially was arrested for obstructing a public officer but was released, authorities said. 


Four arrested in immigration scam

By Erica Werner The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Immigrants who recited the Pledge of Allegiance, took a citizenship oath and answered questions about American history were victims of a scam that cost them as much as $25,000 each, federal agents said. 

Four people were arrested for the scheme that investigators say involved an elaborate fake naturalization ceremony complete with a person in a black robe posing as a judge. 

The “judge” didn’t even know the words to the Pledge of Allegiance, according to a search warrant affidavit filed in connection with the arrests. 

“It was quite an audacious scheme,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Cowan said. “I am not aware of any masquerade this extensive.” 

The alleged ringleader, Elzbieta Malgorzata Bugajska, is a native of Poland who masqueraded as an immigration consultant named Jerry Ann Mitchell. The real Jerry Ann Mitchell died as an infant in Texas in 1943, decades before Bugajska assumed her identity, authorities said. 

Bugajska, 50, of Los Angeles, was arrested Tuesday along with John Patrick Bradley, 56, of Los Angeles, Yolanda Miel Lubiano, 62, of Sun Valley and Lorena Velasquez Garcia, 39, of South Gate. 

All four were charged with one count of mail fraud. Bugajska and Bradley were charged with impersonating federal judges, Bugajska was charged with using a falsely obtained passport and Garcia was charged with accessing a government computer with intent to defraud. 

Bugajska was ordered held without bond Tuesday and Garcia and Lubiano were released on bonds of $25,000 and $20,000. A preliminary hearing was set for Bugajska for April 9, and for Garcia and Lubiano for April 15. A bond hearing for Bradley was pending. 

Lubiano’s public defender declined comment. Attorneys for Bugajska and Garcia did not immediately respond to phone messages. It was not immediately clear if Bradley had obtained an attorney. 

Bugajska allegedly sold genuine Social Security cards for $750 to immigrants who had been steered to her by associates, authorities said. Garcia, a 15-year employee of the Social Security Administration, allegedly provided the cards and shared in the profits. 

Bradley allegedly posed as a judge during at least one bogus ceremony, on Oct. 22, 2000, at Lubiano’s house. 

“Bradley ’swore-in’ the aliens as citizens, but while reciting the Pledge of Allegiance forgot the words and had to be assisted by an alien,” the affidavit says. 

The complaint alleges the ring defrauded at least 25 immigrants, including 14 who attended the bogus citizenship ceremony. Prosecutors believe there are many more victims, and the investigation is ongoing. 

Most of the victims were Koreans and Filipinos. Some of the Filipinos were allegedly lured by Lubiano, a native of the Philippines. 

“This is a scheme that preyed on the hopes of immigrants who wanted to become U.S. citizens,” Cowan said. 

Bugajska allegedly told people she was a former CIA agent and federal judge who was able to bypass the normal bureaucracy to naturalize people. The affidavit describes only one fake naturalization ceremony, but authorities said there was at least one other. 

John Medford, a retiree who has lived a floor below Bradley in a Los Angeles apartment building for about three years, said he was shocked to hear the news about his friendly neighbor. 

“I thought he was a wonderful guy,” Medford said. “I heard a story on the news ... the shocking story about the false citizenship, and I didn’t know that that was involved with our John.” 

——— 

Eds: Staff Writer Sandy Yang contributed to this report. 


Book by Web site owner skewers dead dot-coms

By Michael Liedtke The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Without wise guys like Philip J. Kaplan, it might have taken a few more years before we could share a lusty laugh about the absurdities of the Internet economy. 

Fortunately, the self-styled “idiot dork” who calls himself “Pud” is around to snicker through the dot-com graveyard, crudely skewering the corpses of dumb ideas along the way. 

Kaplan’s profane musings will never be mistaken for profound literature, but he offers enough wit and wisdom to make his new book worth reading. 

The 180-page “F’d Companies: Spectacular Dot-Com Flameouts” capsulizes the bawdy commentary that Kaplan, 25, has been sharing on an irreverent Web site he launched in May 2000 as the hot air began to leak from the dot-com bubble. 

Kaplan’s site began as a spoof on those ghoulish office pools that award points for predicting celebrity deaths. It morphed into an online town square where disillusioned dot-com workers gathered to bash the entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, securities analysts and, yes, reporters that fed the illusion of success before the industry’s implosion. 

The site, which still attracts as many as 4 million visitors per month, transformed Kaplan from just another cynical computer programmer to an acerbic sage. 

Readers unfamiliar with Kaplan no doubt are wondering where they can find his Web site, but it’s a vulgar address that can’t be repeated in a family friendly news outlet. Not even Kaplan’s book publisher, Simon & Schuster, dared to use it in the title, resorting to a contraction instead. 

Kaplan’s merciless retrospective covers most of the dot-com meltdown’s biggest failures, including Pets.com, Webvan.com, Kozmo.com and eToys.com. Those four companies burned through $1.5 billion of investors’ money before collapsing. 

Much has been written about why these dot-coms failed, but Kaplan cuts through the business claptrap and exposes the naked stupidity of their concepts in a few sarcastic sentences. 

Take his analysis of Pets.com: “I’m out of dog food and my cat’s box needs new litter. I know what I’ll do: I’ll order Dog Chow and Fresh Step online from a sock puppet and then I’ll watch the dog starve and the cat (defecate) all over the house while I wait for it to be delivered!” 

Reading Kaplan’s book illustrates the futility of once-ballyhooed high-tech business incubators that Kaplan calls “dot-bomb factories.” Pasadena-based Idealab, perhaps the best-known incubator, backed nine of the failures lowlighted in Kaplan’s book — Pets.com, eToys.com, Refer.com, Z.com, MyBiz.com, eVoice.com, Zelerate.com, Modo and iExchange.com. 

Kaplan’s book also discusses some of the Web’s lesser-known flops, like Eppraisals.com, an online appraiser of antiques. Kaplan’s take: “Investors originally gave this company ... that figures out how much things are worth, more than $15 million. It’s ironic, don’t ya think?” 

Perhaps no more ironic than the success Kaplan enjoys as a caustic commentator. 

“I’m not an analyst, I’m not an investor, I’m not an executive,” Kaplan writes, peppering profanity with loose grammar throughout. “I’m that dude at your office in the dark cubicle who nobody listens to or pays attention to.” 

 

It’s becoming increasingly difficult not to notice Kaplan’s cackle as he makes money ridiculing all the dot-coms that never did. 

——— 

On The Net: 

Simon & Schuster Web site: http://www.simonsays.com 


Developing the video game developers of the future

By William Schiffman The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Somewhere, in a darkened bedroom or a cinderblock basement, a kid is sitting at a computer, dreaming of creating the perfect video game. 

In the past, that dream probably would have died. 

But as the video game market accelerates into a multi-billion dollar industry, the need for developers to feed games to the marketplace has grown. Universities and smaller private institutes have begun courses to fill the need. 

Students who might have signed up for film classes a decade or two ago are increasingly looking at video games as a means of expression, and schools are lining up to help them get a foot in the cyber door. 

“Students were coming up to me, asking me why we weren’t offering game courses,” said Andy Phelps, an instructor of information technology at Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, N.Y. 

Phelps organized a concentration in game development, which was offered for the first time in the winter quarter. He said the school is planning to offer a degree soon. 

Zachary Welch, 23, is one of Phelps’ students. The Chicago native said he arrived at RIT to major in computer engineering, but wants to make games a career. 

“It’s not going to be that big a jump,” said Welch, who is president of the Electronic Gaming Society, a campus gaming club, and is already planning to head a nonprofit corporation involved in expanding the club across the country. 

Welch, like many currently getting an education in gaming, grew up with games. 

“When I was a kid, my dad worked and my mom worked off and on, so they pretty much dropped us off at the arcade with $20,” he said. “Games are so universal. Everybody plays games.” 

Other schools are further along than RIT. Georgia Tech offers a master’s program in game development, and Southern California is planning one starting in the fall. 

The private Art Institutes International at San Francisco began offering a Game Art & Design program last fall. For David Yost, 21, of Merrimack, N.H., finding the school on the Internet was a dream come true. 

“I always loved video games, and I wanted to do something I loved for a living,” he said. Yost is one of six students in the fledgling program, where the cost can hit $5,000 a quarter. 

For that money, students don’t sit around playing “Final Fantasy X” or “Madden NFL 2002.” 

At RIT, for example, students take 2D and 3D graphics programming, both of which focus on game images. They also take Programming for Digital Media, Writing for Interactive Multimedia and the obscurely titled Multi-User Media Spaces. 

That class, says Phelps, focuses “on the development of interactive applications that use network connectivity to allow multiple users to interact with each other in real time and in a persistent virtual community.” 

There are several other courses involved, most with equally obscure titles. The result, the students hope, is a chance to work on cutting-edge titles at a top game company such as Electronic Arts, Sega or Konami. 

One of the best-known sources of development talent is the DigiPen Institute of Technology in Redmond, Wash., and Vancouver, British Columbia. DigiPen opened in 1988 as a computer animation and simulation company doing work for architects and engineers. 

When they were asked to create a season’s worth of cartoon shows, they realized they didn’t have the staff to do the job, said Vice President Jason Chu. Advertising netted them just two or three of the more than 30 people they needed. 

“We realized that without manpower, the industry couldn’t grow,” he said. 

The company began offering classes in animation in conjunction with the British Columbia Institute of Technology. In 1991, Nintendo came calling, and the idea of offering courses in video game development was born. 

“It took about three years to finalize the curriculum,” he said. The school had slots for 30 students. When the fledgling course was announced in the magazine Nintendo Power, they got 1,200 applicants. 

Nintendo provides equipment and technical expertise. DigiPen provides people. 

The first class graduated in July 2000 — 11 then, 36 in April 2001 and another 11 last December. 

The jobs are certainly there. In DigiPen’s first class of 11, nine had accepted jobs along with their sheepskins. They went to such developers as Black Ops, Interplay and Dreamworks. There are more than 100 students in the gaming program now. 

The cost? About $320 a credit, or close to $13,000 for a 154-credit degree. 

At Sony Computer Entertainment of America in Foster City, 22 percent of Jim Wallace’s 30-person game development team was hired right out of school.  

Almost half have previous development experience, and the rest come from the film industry. 

How good are those new grads? 

“In most cases you do have a good amount of work to do,” said Wallace, the associate director for product development. “Normally, within about two months they are contributing to a game. After six months, they’re really hitting it.” 

What about that kid in his bedroom? Does he have a chance? 

“It is possible,” he said. “But the real details of game implementation are way beyond what someone is going to be able to do in his bedroom.” 

RIT’s Phelps agrees — to a point. 

“Is it possible to get a job out of your bedroom? Probably,” he said. “At the end of the day, the industry is going to hire the people who can get it done.” 

END Advance 


Seminary wants to demolish buildings that neighbors see as landmarks

By Jia-Rui Chong Daily Planet staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

On the dividing line of Dwight Avenue, where the southern edge of the UC Berkeley campus meets the northern edge of a leafy residential area, the American Baptist Seminary of the West is planning to build a five-story building on Benvenue Avenue, which will house residences, offices and classrooms. 

To do this, ABSW has to demolish two cottages at 2514 and 2516 Benvenue Ave., which neighbors argue are worth landmark status. 

ABSW is arguing not only that the city cannot landmark its grounds without its consent, but that the two houses are not worthy of the status anyway. 

This debate now stands before the Landmarks Preservation Commission, which must decide whether it can legally landmark religious property without the owner’s consent and, then, if it does have this power, whether it should landmark the two houses slated for demolition, said LPC Commissioner Becky O’Malley. 

 

• Does the city have the right to landmark? Does it want to? 

 

The city has no right to landmark the buildings, said David Levy, the ABSW lawyer, because of state Assembly Bill 133, which after passage in the early 1990s became Government Code 37361. This code says that a noncommercial property owned by a religiously affiliated association or nonprofit organization cannot be landmarked if the owner objects. 

The LPC was supposed to decide on the cottages’ landmark status on March 4, but because this religious exemption is a relatively new part of the General Code with few precedents in case law, the commission delayed consideration until it received written advice from the City Attorney’s office.  

The LPC will decide on these matters on April 8 and hold a public hearing in front of the Zoning Adjustments Board on April 25. 

The two houses that the ABSW is planning to demolish are worthy of landmark status because they date back to 1899 and are the oldest surviving houses on the block, said David Baker of the Benvenue Neighbors Association. 

“They would be called ‘The Robert Thompson Houses,’ if they were landmarked,” he said. 

But it isn’t just a question of maintaining these cottages, he added. Baker pointed out that there are five other buildings designated as landmarks and one as structure of merit in the area bounded by Parker, Dwight, Benvenue and Hillegass. 

“I love the neighborhood because I believe the cottages are part of the historical character of the neighborhood. They need to go along with the other landmarks,” he said. 

Keith Russell, president of the ABSW, said that his organization has tried to be sensitive to the residents’ concerns and also to properties they consider worthy of landmark status. 

“When we had part of our campus landmarked two years ago [by the city], it was done with the understanding that the corner of the property where these cottages are located wouldn’t be landmarked,” he said. 

“We don’t believe that these have enough historical significance and we need space for expansion on our own campus.” 

This previous agreement, said Levy, is another reason the city does not have the right to interfere. 

“The point of the agreement was to exclude the property now at issue to allow the Seminary to use the property. You know what property is like in Berkeley. They have to make use of what they have,” he said. 

Assistant City Attorney Zack Cowan told the Daily Planet that he has told the LPC verbally that the city cannot legally intercede, but held off elaborating until the statement he has written becomes public in the coming week. 

 

• Is this a commercial building? 

 

But beyond the question of the jurisdiction of the religious exemption is interpretation. Neighbors are also worried that the new building will not be “noncommercial” or used for religious purposes. 

“It’s a cash cow for the Seminary,” said David Baker of the Benvenue Neighbors Association, pointing to the use of two ABSW buildings by UC Berkeley Extension for English Language programs. 

“Those buildings provide income that undergirds our scholarship program and our salaries,” said Russell. “We make no apologies for funding our education.” 

But Baker said that the spirit in which the religious exemption was created was to ease economic hardship for church congregations that could not create the income to meet the high standards for building renovation that come with landmark status. 

“Why doesn’t this case fit? Because they’re a big, commercial rental organization. It doesn’t matter that they’re a nonprofit organization – that’s just gotten them out of paying property taxes,” said Baker. 

Baker added that the neighbors are also upset about the violation of a long-standing unwritten understanding with UC Berkeley not to expand south of Dwight. 

Russell insisted that the church is building to meet the housing, parking and classroom needs of its own students and staff, as well as the demand for space of the Graduate Theological Union, of which the ABSW is a part. 

“We are one of nine seminaries in the city and there is a need for common space,” said Russell. 

The ABSW’s own extension programs in states throughout the West also need provisional space when they are in Berkeley, he added. 

As part of this expansion, the ABSW will spend $3 million renovating two apartment buildings on Benvenue in the next two years, as well as $15 million on the new building. The new building is not slated for construction until 2004. 

“What we’re doing is growing into our dream,” said Russell. “The space for expansion is a critical problem, which is worse for small schools. We want to bring in faculty from other places, but one of the issues is housing. We don’t offer big salaries, so housing is part of the package.” 

 

• Is the Seminary being a good neighbor? 

 

Barring legal squabbles, said Baker, the real problem is that the building that the ABSW will be building is fundamentally not right for the community. 

“It’s way, way too big,” he said. 

Project Manager Aran Kaufer, whose company Integrated Structures, is designing the space, disagreed. 

“There are four other 5-story buildings in the area. You can see tall massive buildings on this block. It is not a small-scale residential block,” he said. 

The R-4 zoning allows developers to build a three-story building on the block without a permit, and a six-story building with permits. 

“We’re not asking for any variances,” said R. Gary Black, president of Integrated Structures,  

Besides, said Kaufer, the building looks like a four-story building because its slanted roof hides the fifth floor. They have also tucked a parking lot under the building to keep cars from being visible from the street and picked environmentally-friendly building materials and methods. 

“It’s not going to look like a cheap apartment building,” said Black, pointing to a building across from the ABSW on Benvenue. “It’s going to be a building that the ABSW is proud to own.” 

The Design Review Commission, however, agreed with the neighbors that the building was too tall and told the ABSW to revise its plans. Many of the buildings south of Dwight on Benvenue are three stories, so a five-story building would be higher than what is already there. 

In response to pressure from the DRC and neighbors, Integrated Systems eliminated one floor from their building and added more pedestrian walkways. 

“But campus development patterns are different from residential streets. We have tall buildings with a courtyard. We have to create more height for more open space,” he said. 

“The courtyard is like a public park. Anyone can use it.” 

Russell underscored the ABSW’s long-term commitment to being good neighbors. “We’ve been here since the early 1900s providing a safe, stable space for the neighborhood,” he said. 

Also, said Kaufer, a divinity school is not a fraternity. “It’s not as if seminary students are out on the streets drinking.” 

But the bitter confrontation has left both sides with a bad taste in their mouths. 

Although the neighbors have had several opportunities to talk to ABSW officials, they insist that the ABSW is not listening. 

“The neighbors were invited to a meeting with the Board of Trustees. I told the group, ‘It’s a pro forma ritual, so don’t be disappointed.’ The neighbors spoke sincerely. But no one said anything. They didn’t ask any questions. They just voted [to go ahead with their plans],” said Baker. 

“Ironically, there were a lot of neighbors who got on board [to oppose ABSW] there,” he said. 

Russell does not understand the animosity. Pointing to the school’s racial and cultural diversity, small size and landscaped grounds, he said that the ABSW should be a good everyone can agree on. 

Without charging the neighbors with racism, Russell said, “I’m just wondering out loud why there’s such resistance to a small, primarily black institution that is an anchor for the neighborhood.” 

 


’Jackets suffer narrow defeat at hands of SI

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

At first glance, the Berkeley High boys’ lacrosse team’s two losses this season seem strikingly similar. Both came to private schools from San Francisco (University and St. Ignatius), both were close games all the way through (no lead bigger than two goals), and the ’Jackets gave up goals in the final minutes of each game to lose by one. 

But look closer. The loss to University, suffered a week ago, came on an unfamiliar field against a scrappy but under-manned opponent, with neither team playing particularly well. Tuesday’s loss to St. Ignatius, however, was a case of two powers trading blows for 48 minutes, both teams playing as if this game was their last. 

“St. Ignatius is twice as good as University, and we played twice as well against them,” Berkeley head coach Jon Rubin said after Tuesday’s 10-9 setback. “There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this loss.” 

St. Ignatius defenseman Damon Conklin scored his second goal of the game with just 1:12 left in the match to give the Wildcats the win. Berkeley had tied the score with less than three minutes remaining on a blind, backwards-over-the-head shot from sophomore Sam Geller, but that was the last comeback the ’Jackets had in them. The Berkeley players committed two turnovers in the final minute of the game, getting just one shot on goal before time ran out. 

“Those two times we threw the ball away at the end, that’s just a result of not playing in close games,” Rubin said. “Hopefully next time we’ll have a little more composure.” 

But the ’Jackets gave St. Ignatius all it could handle and then some. The Berkeley seniors had been looking towards Tuesday’s matchup with anticipation, referring to it as their biggest game of the year. They came out fired up, swarming all over the field and becoming increasingly physical as the game progressed. 

“The biggest difference in this game was hustle,” St. Ignatius head coach Dave Giarrusso said. “(Berkeley) out-groundballed us all game, and that’s just a matter of wanting it more.” 

The Wildcats scored two goals in the final two minutes of the first half to take a 6-5 lead, their first of the game. Scott Brittain scored on a loose ball for a two-goal lead just after halftime, but Berkeley tied the game on goals from Calvin Gaskin and Julian Coffman. 

David Hoyt scored for the Wildcats with 8:18 left in the third quarter, then both teams clamped down on defense. Each had a good scoring chance in the final minute. A double-team caused Berkeley defenseman Chris May to turn the ball over for a St. Ignatius breakaway, but Brain Schimaneck’s apparent goal was waved off for a crease violation. Then an errant St. Ignatius pass gave Erick Lindeman a breakaway, but Wildcat goalie Justin Boland saved the shot with just seconds left on the clock. 

Berkeley tied the game again on a Geller shot from up top, but Dan Mason scored from a nice assist by Chris Patterson for a 9-8 lead with 6:33 left. 

Despite the final score, Tuesday’s game gave Rubin confidence as the ’Jackets head into the Bayshore Lacrosse League season. 

“We looked like a totally different team today, and I’m absolutely proud of the effort the players put in,” he said. “That was the best lacrosse we’ve played at Berkeley High in a long time.”


Drama department needs to stay, so does Mr. Wiener

Wednesday March 27, 2002

We, the 27 undersigned Willard Middle School students, are deeply concerned about the Berkeley Unified School District’s plans to lay off Mr. Wiener, our drama teacher. Willard Middle School has had a drama program for many years. Drama is an exciting elective and has created a strong after school community, open to anyone who wants to be a part of it. It has been a place where one can make friends and interact with people of diverse minds, cultures and backgrounds. 

Unlike most sports teams, drama is not based around competition, but the want and need for every person to succeed to their highest potential. It is a place where you will receive support and help no matter what. The drama elective and after school program are both fund and challenging to the mind. Some people believe that drama is pure acting. However, it is a lot more. 

Every play was written in some period in time. The play reflects that time — how people spoke, how people acted and their basic way of life. In this way putting on a play is a history lesson in and of itself. We perform plays like those written by Gilbert & Sullivan. Many words used in those plays would only be found in books like Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. To truly act your part you must know what your lines mean and so we have our English lesson. 

When you perform your are putting yourself out to the audience. How you play your role, determines the audience’s opinion. In drama class you are learning to present yourself to crowds and large audiences. 

In drama class one gets to know people who otherwise you would have utterly no interaction with. These people have different feelings and strengths that when brought together in a group are very good for the Willard school community. Also, the after school drama program is a safe space to spend time in the afternoon away from places that could be hazardous or situations that would tempt you to do harmful things such as using drugs. 

Many children would not come to school at all if not for those few classes. Drama has always been one of these special classes. It is the fun motivation that makes you want to get up and come to school — the class that will encourage your mind and make you feel a part of a supportive group. 

At Willard all our plays are musicals. This means singing, acting and dancing. Our choreographed dances are energetic and teach us physical control and definitely give us lots of exercise — possibly more exercise that we get when we give our grudging effort in physical education. 

For all the reasons listed above, and many more, we want our wonderful drama teacher Mr. Wiener to be rehired come May and we want to be allowed to keep our incredible Willard drama department. 

We will be performing Pirates of Penzance May 16, 17 and 18 at 7:00 p.m. as well as a matinee performance on May 18 at 2:00. Ever practice is overshadowed by the realization that this play may well be our last. The Berkeley community cannot allow that to happen. Come see for yourself what a powerful program this is! 

 

Megan Covey, Erica Schapiro,  

Madeline Frunko, Paloma Salgado 

Hannah Michabells, Antanette Thompson 

Michelle Borch, Ashley Dearheart 

Arianna Williams, Esther R.S. 

Rosie Donlown-Elswood, Maricruz Martinez 

Allyssa Villanueva, Rose Young 

Kya Webb, Elom Early 

Abigail Aguirre, Diana Salem 

Anthony Love, Michaela Glaser 

Craig Smith, Melanie Ruffin 

Sophie Meryash, Dory Blair 

Marisa Floremi, Ariel Marek and Isabel Bram


Staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

 

924 Gilman Mar. 29: Limpwrist, All You Can Eat, The Subtonics, The Bananas, Sharp Knife; Mar. 30: 9 Shocks Terror, What Happens Next?, Phantom Limbs, The Curse, Onion Flavored Rings; All shows begin a 8 p.m. 924 Gillman St., 525-9926 

 

Anna’s Bistro Mar. 27: David Widelock Jazz Duo; Mar. 28: Randy Moore Jazz Trio; Mar. 29: Anna & Ellen Hoffman; 10 p.m. Hideo Date; Mar. 30: Robin Gregory; 10 p.m. Ducksan Distones Jazz Sextet; Music starts at 8 p.m. unless noted, 1801 University Ave., 849-2662. 

 

Ashkenaz Music and Dance Community Center Mar. 29: Alpha Yaya Diallo; 1317 San Pablo Ave., 548-0425. 

 

Cato’s Ale House Mar. 27: Vince Wallace Trio; Mar. 31: Phillip Greenlief Trio; 3891 Piedmont Ave., Oakland, 655-3349 

 

Eli’s Mile High Club Every Friday, 10 p.m. Funky Fridays Conscious Dance Party with KPFA DJs Splif Skankin and Funky Man. $10; 3629 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Oakland. 655-6661 

 

Freight & Salvage Mar. 27: Paul Thorn, $16.50; Mar. 28: Old Blind Dogs, $17.50; Mar. 29: Jack Hardy, $16.50; Mar. 30: Faye Carol, $17.50; 1111 Addison St., 548-1761, folk@freightandsalvage.org 

 

“Impact Briefs 5: The East Bay Hit” Through Mar. 30: Fri. - Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 7 p.m., A collection of seven plays all about the ups and downs of in the Bay Area. $12, $7 students. La Val’s Subterranean Theatre, 1834 Euclid, 464-4468, tickets@impattheatre.com. 

 

“The Merchant of Venice” Through Mar. 31: Wed. - Thurs. 7 p.m., Fri. - Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m., Women in Time Productions presents Shakespeare’s famous romantic comedy replete with masks and revelry, balcony scenes, and midnight escapes. $25, half-price on Wed. The Berkeley City Club, 2315 Durant Ave. 925-798-1300 

 

“Knock Knock” Through Apr. 14: Wed. - Sat. 8 p.m., Sun 2 p.m., 7 p.m., A comedic farce about two eccentric retirees whose comfortable philosophical arguments are interrupted by a series of strange visitors. $26 - $35. Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison St., 843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org 

 

“Murder Dressed in Satin” by Victor Lawhorn, ongoing. A mystery-comedy dinner show at The Madison about a murder at the home of Satin Moray, a club owner and self-proclaimed socialite with a scarlet past. Dinner is included in the price of the theater ticket. $47.50 Lake Merritt Hotel, 1800 Madison St., Oakland, 239-2252, www.acteva.com/go/havefun. 

 

“A Fairy’s Tail” Mar. 16 through Apr. 7: 8 p.m. Fri. and Sat., 5 p.m. Sun., The Shotgun Players present Adam Bock’s story of a girl and her odyssey of revenge and personal transformation after a giant smashes her house with her family inside. Directed by Patrick Dooley. $10 - $25. Mar. 16 - 31: Thrust Stage Berkeley Rep; Apr. 4 - 7: UC Theatre on University Ave.; 704-8210, www.shotgunplayers.org. 

 

 

“Trace of a Human” Through Mar. 30: Jim Freeman and Krystyna Mleczko exhibit their latest works including mixed media sculpture installation and acrylic on canvas paintings. 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Ardency Gallery, 709 Broadway, Oakland, 836-0831, gallery709@aol.com 

 

 

“The Works of Alexander Nepote” Through Mar. 29: Nepote was a 20th century artist whose medium is a process of layered painting of torn pieces of watercolor paper, fused together in images that speak of the spirit that underlies and is embodied in the landscape he views. Check museum for times. Bade Museum, Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Ave., 849-8272 

 

 

“Trace of a Human” Through Mar. 30: An exhibit of mixed media sculpture by Jim Freeman, and acrylic paintings on canvas by Krystyna Mleczko. Tues. - Sat. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ardency Gallery, 709 Broadway, Oakland, 836-0831, gallery709@aol.com 

 

“Journey of Self-discovery” Through Mar. 30: Community Works artist Adriana Diaz and Willard Junior High students joined together to explore gender stereotypes, advertising, and other influential elements in society in a project that culminated in two life-size portraits that explore self-identity. Free. La Pena Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave. 845-3332. 

 

 

“West Oakland Today” Through Mar. 30: Sergio De La Torre presents “thehousingproject”, an open house/video installation that explores desire surrounding one’s sense of home and place. Marcel Diallo presents “Scrapyard Ghosts”, an installation that presents a glimpse into the process of one man’s conversation with the living past through objects of iron, wood, rock dirt and other debris unearthed at an old scrapyard site in West Oakland’s Lower Bottom neighborhood. Pro Arts, 461 Ninth St., Oakland  

 

"Earthly Pleasures" assemblage and photographs by Susan Danis, Through March 30: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., Mon. - Sat.; Sticks, 1579 B, Solano Ave., 526-6603.  

 

“Domestic Bliss” Through Apr. 4: Collection of abstract paintings and mixed medium by Amy St. George. Albany Community Center Foyer Gallery, 1249 Marin Ave., Albany, 524-9283. 

 

“Portraits of the Afghan People: 1984 - 1992” Through Apr. 6: An exhibit of black and white photographs by Bay Area photographer Patricia Monaco. Free. Mon. - Fri. 8:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Photolab Gallery, 2235 Fifth St., 644-1400 

 

“The Zoom of the Souls” Mar. 23 through Apr. 13: An exhibit of oil paintings by Mark P. Fisher. Sat. 1 p.m. - 6 p.m. Bay Area Music Foundation, 462 Elwood Ave. #9, Oakland, 836-5223 

 

“Sibila Savage & Sylvia Sussman” Through Apr. 13: Photographer, Sibila Savage presents photographs documenting the lives of her immigrant grandparents, and Painter, Sylvia Sussman displays her abstract landscapes on unstretched canvas. Free. Wed. - Sun. 12 p.m. - 5 p.m. Berkeley Art Center, 1275 Walnut St. 64-6893, www.berkeleyartcenter.org 

 

“Trillium Press: Past, Present and Future” Feb. 15 through April 13: Works created at Trillium Press by 28 artists. Tues. - Fri. noon - 5:30 p.m., Sat. noon - 4:30 p.m.; Kala Art Institute, 1060 Heinz Ave., 549-2977, www.kala.org.  

 

“Art is Education” Mar. 18 through Apr. 19th: A group exhibition of over 50 individual artworks created by Oakland Unified School District students, Kindergarten through 12th grade. Mon. - Fri. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Craft and Cultural Arts Gallery, State of California Office Building Atrium, 1515 Clay St., Oakland, 238-6952, www.oaklandculturalarts.org 

 

“Expressions of Time and Space” Mar. 18 through April 17: Calligraphy by Ronald Y. Nakasone. Julien Designs 1798 Shattuck Ave., 540-7634, RyNakasone@aol.com.  

 

“The Legacy of Social Protest: The Disability Rights Movement” Through April 30: The first exhibition in a series dealing with Free Speech, Civil Rights, and Social Protest Movements of the 60s and 70s in California. Photograghs by: Cathy Cade, HolLynn D’Lil, Howard Petrick, Ken Stein. The Free Speech Cafe, Moffitt Undergraduate Library, University of California-Berkeley, hjadler@yahoo.com.  

 

“The Art History Museum of Berkeley” Masterworks by Guy Colwell. Faithful copies of several artists from the pasts, including Titian’s “The Venus of Urbino,” Cezanne’s “Still Life,” Picasso’s “Woman at a Mirror,” and Botticelli’s “Primavera” Ongoing. Call ahead for hours. Atelier 9, 2028 Ninth St., 841-4210, www.atelier9.com. 

 

“Quilted Paintings” Mar. 3 through May 4: Contemporary wall quilts by Roberta Renee Baker, landscapes, abstracts, altars and story quilts. Free. The Coffee Mill, 3363 Grand Ave., Oakland 465-4224 

 

“Jurassic Park: The Life and Death of Dinosaurs” Feb. 2 through May 12: An exhibit displaying models of the sets and dinosaur sculptures used in the Jurassic Park films, as well as a video presentation and a dig pit where visitors can dig for specially buried dinosaur bones. $8 adults, $6, youth and seniors. Lawrence Hall of Science, Centennial Dr., above the UC Berkeley campus, 642-5132, www.lawrencehallofscience.org 

 

“Masterworks of Chinese Painting” Mar. 13 through May 26: An exhibition of distinguished works representing virtually every period and phase of Chinese painting over the last 900 years, including figure paintings and a selection of botanical and animal subjects. Prices vary. Wed. - Sun. 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. The University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2626 Bancroft Way, 642-4889, www.bampfa.berkeley.edu 

 

“The Image of Evil in Art” Feb. 7 through May 31: An exhibit exploring the varying depictions of the devil in art. Call ahead for hours. The Flora Lamson Hewlett Library, 2400 Ridge Rd., 649-2541. 

 

“The Pottery of Ocumichu” Through May 31: A case exhibit of the imaginative Mexican pottery made in the village of Ocumichu, Michoacan. Known particularly for its playful devil figures, Ocumichu pottery also presents fanciful everyday scenes as well as religious topics. Call ahead for hours. The Flora Lamson Hewlett Library, 2400 Ridge Rd., 649-2540 

 

“Being There” Feb. 23 through May 12: An exhibit of paintings, sculpture, photography and mixed media works by 45 contemporary artists who live and/or work in Oakland. Wed. - Sat. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sun. 12 - 5 p.m. $6, adults, $4 children. The Oakland Museum of California, Oak and 10th St., 238-2200, www.museumca.org 

 

“Scene in Oakland, 1852 to 2002” Mar. 9 through Aug. 25: An exhibit that includes 66 paintings, drawings, watercolors and photographs dating from 1852 to the present, featuring views of Oakland by 48 prominent California artists. Wed. - Sat. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sun. 12 - 5 p.m. $6, adults, $4 children. The Oakland Museum of California, Oak and 10th St., 238-2200, www.museumca.org 

 

Readings 

 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center Mar. 17: 3 p.m., Suzan Hagstrom reads from her book “Sara’s Children: The Destruction of Chielnik,” chronicling the survival of one brother and four sisters in Nazi death camps. Free. 1414 Walnut St. 848-0237 x127 

 

Black Oak Books Feb. 27: 7:30 p.m., Author & Activist Randy Schutt discussing his new book "Inciting Democracy: A Practical Proposal for Creating a Good Society." 1491 Shattuck Ave., 486-0698. 

 

Cody’s on Fourth St. Feb. 27: 6 p.m., Rodney Yee brings “Yoga: The Poetry of the Body”; Feb. 28: Rosemary Wells talks about children, children’s books, and the importance of reading; All events begin at 7 p.m. unless noted and ask a $2 donation. 1730 Fourth St., 559-9500, www.codysbooks.com.  

 

Cody’s on Telegraph Ave. Feb. 25: David Henry Sterry describes “Chicken: Self-portrait of a Young Man for Rent”; Feb. 26: Carter Scholz reads from “Radiance”; All events begin at 7:30 p.m. unless noted and ask a $2 donation. 2454 Telegraph Ave., 845-7852, www.codysbooks.com.  

 

Easy Going Travel Shop & Bookstore Mar. 7: Carl Parkes, author of “Moon Handbook: Southeast Asia”, presents a slide show exploring his travels in the region; Mar. 12: William Fienne describes his personal journey from Texas to North Dakota as he follows the northern migration of snow geese; Mar. 14: Gary Crabbe and Karen Misuraca present slides and read from their book, “The California Coast”; Mar. 19: Barbara and Robert Decker present a slide show focusing on the volcanoes of California and the Cascade Mountain Range; Mar. 21: Stefano DeZerega discusses opportunities for study, travel, and work in Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, or Eastern Europe; All readings are free and start at 7:30 p.m., 1385 Shattuck Ave. at Rose, 843-3533. 

 

GAIA Building Mar. 14: 7 - 9 p.m., Lecture with Patricia Evans speaking from her book, “Controlling People: How to recognize, Understand and Deal with People Who Are Trying to Control You.”; Mar. 19: Reading and slide show with Carol Wagner, “Survival of the Spirit: Lives of Cambodian Buddhists.”; March 21: 6 - 9 p.m., 1st Berkeley Edgework Books Salon; Mar. 22: 6:30 - 9:30 p.m., Book Reading and Jazz Concert with David Rothenberg; All events are held in the Rooftop Gardens Solarium, 7th Floor, GAIA Building, 2116 Allston Way, 848-4242. 

 

Gathering Tribes Mar. 15: 6:30 p.m., Susan Lobo and Victoria Bomberry will be conducting readings from “American Indians And The Urban Experience.”; 1573 Solano Ave., 528-9038, www.gatheringtribes.com.  

 

UC Berkeley Lunch Poems Reading Series Mar. 7: Marilyn Hacker reads from her most recent book, “Squares and Courtyards”. Free. Morrison Library in Doe Library, UC Berkeley campus, 642-0137, www.berkeley.edu/calendar/events/poems. 

 

University of Creation Spirituality Mar. 21: 7 - 9 p.m., Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future, An Evening with Author Margaret J. Wheatley, $10-$15 donation; 2141 Broadway, Oakland, 835-4827 x29, darla@berkana.org. 

 

 

Poetry 

 

Poetry Flash @ Cody’s Mar. 3: Myung Mi Kim, Harryette Mullen & Geoffrey O’Brien; Mar. 6: Bill Berkson, Albert Flynn DeSilver; Mar. 10: Leslie Scalapino, Dan Farrell; Mar. 13: Lucille Lang Day, Risa Kaparo; Mar. 20: Edward Smallfield, Truong Tran; Mar. 24: Susan Griffin, Honor Moore; All events begin at 7:30 p.m., $2 donation. 2454 Telegraph Ave., 845-7852, www.codysbooks.com.  

 

Poetry Reading @ South Branch Berkeley Public Library Mar. 2: Bay Area Poets Coalition is holding an open reading. 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. Free. 1901 Russell St. 

 

Word Beat Mar. 9: Sonia Greenfield and Megan Breiseth; Mar. 16, Q. R. Hand and Lu Pettus; Mar. 23: Lee Gerstmann and Sam Pierstorffs; Mar. 30: Eleanor Watson-Gove and Jim Watson-Gove; All shows 7 - 9 p.m., Coffee With A Beat, 458 Perkins, Oakland. 526-5985, www.angelfire.com/poetry/wordbeat. 

 

Fellowship Café Mar. 15: 7:30 p.m., Eliot Kenin, poetry, storytellers, singers and musicians. $5-$10. Fellowship Hall, 1924 Cedar St., 540-0898. 

 

Tours 

 

Golden Gate Live Steamers Grizzly Peak Boulevard and Lomas Cantadas Drive at the south end of Tilden Regional Park Small locomotives, scaled to size. Trains run Sun., 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Rides: Sun., noon to 3 p.m., weather permitting. 486-0623. 

 

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Fridays 9:30 - 11:45 a.m. or by appointment. Call ahead to make reservations. Free. University of California, Berkeley. 486-4387. 

 

Museums 

 

Habitot Children’s Museum “Back to the Farm” An interactive exhibit gives children the chance to wiggle through tunnels, look into a mirrored fish pond, don farm animal costumes, ride on a John Deere tractor and more. “Recycling Center” Lets the kids crank the conveyor belt to sort cans, plastic bottles and newspaper bundles into dumpster bins; $4 adults; $6 children age 7 and under; $3 for each additional child age 7 and under. Mon. and Wed., 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Tues. and Fri., 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thur., 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 2065 Kittredge St. 647-1111 or www.habitot.org. 

 

UC Berkeley Museum of Paleontology Lobby, Valley Life Sciences Building, UC Berkeley “Tyrannosaurus Rex,” ongoing. A 20 foot by 40 foot replica of the fearsome dinosaur made from casts of bones of the most complete T. Rex skeleton yet excavated. When unearthed in Montana, the bones were all lying in place with only a small piece of the tailbone missing. “Pteranodon” A suspended skeleton of a flying reptile with a wingspan of 22-23 feet. The Pteranodon lived at the same time as the dinosaurs. Free. Mon. - Fri., 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sat. and Sun., 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. 642-1821. 

 

Holt Planetarium Programs are recommended for age 8 and up; children under age 6 will not be admitted. $2 in addition to regular museum admission. “Constellations Tonight” Ongoing. Using a simple star map, learn to identify the most prominent constellations for the season in the planetarium sky. Daily, 3:30 p.m. $7 general; $5 seniors, students, disabled, and youths age 7 to 18; $3 children age 3 to 5 ; free children age 2 and younger. Daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Centennial Drive, UC Berkeley, 642-5132, www.lhs.berkeley.edu. 

 

Lawrence Hall of Science Mar. 16: 1 - 4 p.m., Moviemaking for children 8 years old and up; Mar. 20: Spring Equinox; “Jurassic Park: Dinosaur Auditions Live Science Demonstrations” A directed activity in which children “audtion” to be a dinosaur in an upcoming movie. They’ll learn about the variety of dinosaurs in the Jurassic Park exhibit as well as dress up, act, and roar like a dinosaur. Through May 12: Mon. - Fri. 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m.; Sat. - Sun. 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m. 3 p.m. $8 adults, $6 children. Centenial Dr. just above the UC campus and just below Grizzly Peak Blvd. 642-5132 

 

UC Berkeley Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology will close its exhibition galleries for renovation. It will reopen in early 2002.  

 

Send arts events two weeks in advance to Calendar@berkeleydailyplanet.net, 2076 University, Berkeley 94704 or fax to 841-5694.


Compiled by Guy Poole
Wednesday March 27, 2002


Wednesday, Mar. 27

 

 

City Commons Club, 

Great Decisions Program 

10 a.m. - noon 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Dan Kammen, professor of Energy and Resources Group and director of Energy and Science, UC Berkeley; “Energy and the Environment.” 

$5. 848-3533. 

 

Prose Writers’ Workshop 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Berkeley/Richmond Jewish  

Community Center Library 

1414 Walnut St. 

From Op-ed to fiction, memoir to the feature article. Workshop format. Free. 524-3034. 

 

Berkeley Gray Panthers  

General Meeting 

1:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

The Clean Money Campaign and the League of Women Voters will talk about Clean Money, Clean Politics: Campaign Finance Reform in a Democracy. 548-9696, graypanthers@hotmail.com. 

 


Thursday, March 28

 

 

Seed Swap 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Ecology Center 

2530 San Pablo Ave. 

Bay Area Seed Interchange Library's annual Seed Swap. Bring seed and envelopes. A raffle for live plants. 823-4769. 

 


Friday, March 29

 

 

City Commons Club 

12:30 p.m. 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Peter Hillier, assistant city manager, transportation; “Bringing About a Paradigm Shift.” $1. 848-3533. 

 

Berkeley Women in Black 

noon - 1 p.m. 

Bancroft and Telegraph Ave. 

Standing in solidarity with Israeli and Palestinian women to urge an end to the occupation and push the peace process forward. 548-6310, wibberkeley.org. 

 


Saturday, March 30

 

 

Keep Kids Street Safe 

1:30 - 4 p.m. 

YWCA 

1515 Franklin St., Oakland 

A national campaign helping keep children safe and healthy. Highlights include food, prizes and music. 530-1319, compeace@concentric.net 

 


Monday, April 1

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Saturday, April 6

 

 

Library Grand Opening 

1 p.m. 

Berkeley Public Library 

The celebration will include a ribbon cutting ceremony, a keynote speech by Alice Walker, musical guests, and building tours. 548-7102 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 - 11 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class in basic personal preparedness for emergency situations. 981-5605 

 


Monday, April 8

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 


City’s crime rate jumps dramatically

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Crime in Berkeley rose 16.5 percent between 2000 and 2001, well above the statewide average of 5.8 percent, according to statistics released Monday by state Attorney General Bill Lockyer. 

The city saw a small reduction in violent crime, such as homicide, rape and aggravated assault, but there were significant jumps in property crime. The burglary rate surged 29 percent, and motor vehicle theft increased by 15 percent. 

Politicians and neighborhood activists suggested that the surge in crime may be related to last year’s dip in the economy, but the Berkeley Police Department warned against jumping to conclusions. 

“I don’t have an explanation for the increase in crime,” said BPD spokesperson Lt. Cynthia Harris. 

Harris said the department is examining the increase in property crime and will develop appropriate responses. Increased surveillance, extra officers on the street and an expanded undercover operation are all possibilities, she said. 

“I’m very distressed,” said Mayor Shirley Dean, reacting to the statistics. “We really need to find out how we can more effectively use our resources so that these numbers go down.” 

Dean said there are no easy answers.  

“I feel sort of frustrated in how we approach this,” she said. The mayor said she will confer with City Manager Weldon Rucker and Police Chief Dash Butler about the best response, but suggested that greater attention to small, quality of life issues, like speeding, might have an effect on larger crime concerns. 

City Councilmember Kriss Worthington said the city has already focused on quality of life concerns in the downtown area. 

Worthington said his chief concern is beefing up the police presence in the most dangerous neighborhoods. 

“We have focused on making businesspeople happy more than making neighborhoods happy,” he said. “Are we putting enough police hours into south and west Berkeley?” 

Councilmember Dona Spring urged residents to make use of police department resources in safeguarding their cars and homes. She said the department will conduct safety checks on homes upon request and provide assistance in developing neighborhood watch groups. 

Neighborhood activists said they were caught off guard by the statistical jump. 

“I was surprised,” said Zelda Bronstein, president of the Thousand Oaks Neighborhood Association in North Berkeley. Bronstein said her neighborhood saw a wave of burglaries in January and February of this year, but that police action had apparently put a stop to them. 

Charles Robinson, a South Berkeley activist, said the figures reinforce the importance of neighbors looking out for neighbors. 

“It puts us on the alert,” Robinson said, “particularly for our seniors.” 

Lockyer’s report includes crime statistics for 75 California jurisdictions with populations of 100,000 or more. The state combined homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, and motor vehicle theft figures into a California Crime Index, yielding the 16.5 percent figure for Berkeley. 

The FBI Crime Index, also cited in the report, adds larceny theft and arson to the equation. According to the FBI index, crime in Berkeley rose 21 percent between 2000 and 2001.  

 


Storno leads Panthers past rival Piedmont

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Joe Storno threw a complete game and the St. Mary’s Panthers exploded for five runs in the fifth inning to defeat Piedmont, 7-1, on Tuesday. 

The win gave St. Mary’s a 2-0 record in the BSAL (5-6 overall), a pretty good start for the team with an injury-plagued pitching staff. Storno is the ace-by-default, as the Panthers’ top two starters are both sidelined with shoulder problems, and knows the burden is on him to get his team through games. 

“It feels good to be the number-one starter, since I was mainly a reliever last year,” said Storno, who threw 112 pitches against the Highlanders. “I know I have to go at least six innings for us to have a chance to win.” 

The senior southpaw did better than that on Tuesday, going the distance. But he did so as if he were being scored on degree of difficulty, putting the leadoff man on base in each of the first five innings and stranding 12 runners in the first six frames. 

“That’s how Joe pitches: lot of walks, lots of pitches,” St. Mary’s head coach Andy Shimabukuro said. “But he battles hard and gets through it most of the time.” 

Second baseman Chris Alfert gave Storno a 1-0 lead with a towering homerun in the third inning off of Piedmont starter Ben Book, but helped hand back a run with a two-out error that allowed the Highlanders’ only run of the game. 

The Panthers broke the game open in the bottom of the fifth. Book loaded the bases on two walks and his own error, and up stepped Storno, who had just missed a homer of his own in the previous at-bat. This time, he drove Book’s first pitch to the fence in right for a double, scoring two runs. Chase Moore followed with a two-run triple to nearly the same spot and scored on a Jeff Marshall single. 

“We gave (Piedmont) lots of opportunities, and we only got a couple,” Shimabukuro said. “But that’s the name of the game, taking advantage of opportunities, and we did that and they didn’t” 

Storno was in a similar situation in the Panthers’ first league game, taking a three-run lead into the seventh inning against St. Joseph two weeks ago. He gave up four runs before leaving the game that day, but the Panthers came back to win in the bottom of the inning. 

“The St. Joe’s game was in the back of my mind, because I had a big lead in that game too,” Storno said. “It seems like we’re always in close games, and then we get some runs in the sixth or seventh inning.” 

But the final inning was actually Storno’s easiest, getting three flyballs on just six pitches, including a nice running catch by Moore in centerfield to end the game.


Face facts about parking garage

Charlie Smith Berkeley
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Editor: 

 

The costs of construction, maintenance and operation are often prohibitive. Earthquake design, upkeep, and payment of toll collectors all work to make costs so high that users are often unwilling to pay any where near the total costs. 

Consider that most garages are only full about 200 days a year, if then. A dual system of human and coin-operated collection may be needed. 

Comparison of costs at existing nearby private garages shows that the cost per parking space may range from $10,000 per space on bare ground, to about $20,000 per space when a structure is built, on up to $50,000 per space for a proposed garage on the Waterfront. 

The best alternative to expensive garages is for all employees to be given a "Transportation Allowance" similar to sick leave, vacation and retirement, and permission to spend it on any system of transportation. But if an automobile is used to get to work, or to class, the full charge should be made for any parking provided by an employer or school administration. Or the going rate parking at other garages in the general area of a proposed garage. 

This takes away the basic subsidy for automobile use and puts it on an even comparison with other forms of transportation. Free parking any place fosters the idea that automobile users deserve to use public space as a matter of course, which is not true. 

 

Charlie Smith 

Berkeley 

 


Sexual battery suspect in Dublin jail

By Jia-Rui Chong Daily Planet staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

A man suspected of sexual battery and attempted rape along the BART path running from Berkeley to El Cerrito is now in police custody at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin. 

Richmond resident Valentin R. Aguilar, 25, was arrested at his workplace in Berkeley on March 13. A warrant for his arrest was issued on March 12. 

Officials at three police departments said a man on a bicycle rode past female joggers and walkers grabbing their private parts. The cases in Berkeley, where the earliest reports were filed, go back to 2000. 

The worst incident was reported in El Cerrito. According to Detective Scott Cliatt at the El Cerrito Police Department, a man attacked a blind woman along the BART path with the intent to rape her. 

Aguilar faces a total of eight counts of sexual battery, six in Alameda County and two in Contra Costa County. In addition, Aguilar faces one charge of attempt to rape and one charge of false imprisonment in Contra Costa County. He will be tried in two separate courts because Albany and Berkeley are in Alameda County, while El Cerrito is in Contra Costa County. 

The charge of false imprisonment, when a person is held against his or her will, carries a further penalty because the woman who is blind qualifies as a dependent. 

The suspect was identified by some of the victims, who were shown a photograph. But the process of identifying the victim was tough, said Detective David Bettencourt of the Albany Police Department, because the man would grab women and then keep right on going. Victims often did not get a good look at his face. 

Although the BART path is generally very safe, said Cliatt, crimes from robbery to assault occasionally happen. 

“Imagine an area where there are lots of people, lots of foot traffic. There are just going to be crimes,” he said. 

Lt. Cynthia Harris, who said the BP get several calls for sexual battery every month, said that the BP tries to take a proactive approach to these types of cases by distributing alert flyers and making the community more aware of the crime. 

Police are still investigating the sexual battery cases along the BART path, so anyone with information should contact Detective DeBlasi in Berkeley at (510) 981-5735, Detective Bettencourt in Albany at (510) 525-7300 or Detective Cliatt in El Cerrito at (510) 215-4420.


RE: Ferry to Gillman being considered

Martin Ilian Albany
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Editor:  

 

The Albany City Council at its general meeting Monday night appointed council member Alan Maris to serve on a community advisory committee that would look into building a terminal on the border of Albany and Berkeley, near Golden Gate Fields. 

Recommending ferry service were speakers from both Berkeley and Albany. They included Linda Perry of the Berkeley Ferry Commission and Jerri Holan of Friends of the Albany Ferry. They said that it could eliminate almost a lane of commuter traffic from the Bay Bridge. Staffers from the SF Bay Area Water Transit Authority, a new, regional government agency, said that the ferries could operate during an emergency, when BART or the bridges might be closed. 

Proponents said they would want the ferries running during weekends, for recreation. 

But ferry service would need a subsidy. The SF to Vallejo service is subsidized--fares account for 70% of expenses. Finding ferry parking 

might be a problem. Pollution might be a problem, but new technologies, such as bio-diesel, could be pollution-free. 

At the meeting there was talk of extending ferry service to the airport. 

 

Martin Ilian 

Albany


Activists spar on Mideast issue

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Local activists sparred over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict during an Alameda County Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday that was intended to focus on a more peaceful theme. 

The debate came during public comment on an anti-hate crime resolution put forth by Supervisor Keith Carson, who represents Berkeley, Albany and Emeryville. The ceremonial resolution, which reaffirmed a “zero tolerance policy toward hate crimes” in Alameda County, passed unanimously. 

Carson offered the resolution after a series of Latino organizations and lawyers in the Bay Area, Sacramento and Washington, D.C. received hate mail earlier this month, and a San Francisco synagogue, Congregation Beth Israel-Judea, suffered an apparent arson attempt Friday. 

“It’s been very unfortunate that lately ... there has been an increase in hate crimes,” said Carson. “It’s important that we speak out boldly.” 

Members of the public, several from Berkeley, praised the board for passing the resolution at a largely amicable meeting.  

But two activists, Deborah Louria, East Bay Region director of the Jewish Community Relations Council in Oakland, and Barbara Lubin, executive director of the Middle East Children’s Alliance in Berkeley, clashed over the Israel-Palestine debate on the UC Berkeley campus. 

Louria, in response to a question from Supervisor Gail Steele, said that activists from Students for Justice in Palestine, a campus group, have created an intimidating atmosphere for Jewish students at UC Berkeley. 

“Jewish students on campus feel especially beleaguered, harassed, isolated,” said Louria. 

Louira focused specifically on a February 16-18 conference on Palestinian solidarity organized by the student group. Louira complained that conference security surrounded and intimidated Adam Weisberg, executive director of Berkeley Hillel, a Jewish student center, and Yitzhak Santis of the Jewish Community Relations Council as they moved about during the conference. 

“They decided to intimidate us,” said Santis, in an interview with the Planet after the meeting, labeling the students’ tactics “fascistic thuggery.” 

But Lubin noted that there are several Jewish students in Students for Justice in Palestine, and argued that the intimidation goes both ways. 

“Clearly, there are problems on the campus,” Lubin said. “But I would say they go both ways.” 

Snehal Shingavi, a UC Berkeley graduate student and member of Students for Justice, argued that Weisberg’s appearance at the conference was designed to intimidate and said the security detail was intended to protect everyone involved. 

Shingavi also argued that the leading pro-Israel group on campus, the Israeli Action Committee, has intimidated Middle Eastern students. 

“In the post-September 11 environment on campus, it’s clearly been extraordinarily intimidating to be Arab, or Muslim, or Palestinian on this campus,” Shingavi said.


Today in History

Staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Wednesday, March 27, is the 86th day of 2002. There are 279 days left in the year. The Jewish holiday Passover begins at sunset. 

 

Highlight in History: 

Twenty-five years ago, on March 27, 1977, 582 people were killed when a KLM Boeing 747, attempting to take off, crashed into a Pan Am 747 on the Canary Island of Tenerife. 

 

On this date: 

In 1512, Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon sighted Florida. 

In 1625, Charles I ascended the English throne upon the death of James I. 

In 1794, President Washington and Congress authorized creation of the U.S. Navy. 

In 1836, the first Mormon temple was dedicated, in Kirtland, Ohio. 

In 1917, the Seattle Metropolitans became the first U.S. team to win the Stanley Cup as they defeated the Montreal Canadiens. 

In 1945, during World War II, Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower told reporters in Paris that German defenses on the Western Front had been broken. 

In 1958, Nikita Khrushchev became Soviet premier in addition to First Secretary of the Communist Party. 

In 1964, Alaska was rocked by a powerful earthquake that killed 114 people. 

In 1968, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, the first man to orbit the earth, died in a plane crash. 

In 1980, 137 workers died when a North Sea floating oil field platform, the Alexander I. Keilland, capsized during a storm. 

Ten years ago: Democratic presidential front-runner Bill Clinton, campaigning in New York, apologized for recently golfing at an all-white club. German Chancellor Helmut Kohl met with Austrian President Kurt Waldheim in Munich, a meeting denounced by Jewish groups because of Waldheim’s alleged involvement with Nazi persecution during World War II. 

Five years ago: Dexter King, son of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., met with James Earl Ray, the man in prison for the older King’s assassination. Ray denied having anything to do with the shooting, to which King replied, “I believe you.” Russian workers staged a nationwide strike to demand overdue wages. 

One year ago: In its first specific accusation against a detained U.S.-based scholar, China said Gao Zhan had confessed to spying for foreign intelligence agencies. (Gao, who had been detained on Feb. 11, was released the following July.) California regulators approved electricity rate hikes of up to 46 percent. An empty train riding on the wrong side of the tracks crashed into a crowded commuter train in central Belgium, killing eight people. 

Today’s Birthdays: Lord Callaghan, former British prime minister, is 90. Blues musician Robert “Junior” Lockwood is 87. Newspaper columnist Anthony Lewis is 75. Dance company director Arthur Mitchell is 68. Actor Julian Glover is 67. Actor Jerry Lacy is 66. Actor Austin Pendleton is 62. Actor Michael York is 60. Rock musician Tony Banks (Genesis) is 52. Actress Maria Schneider is 50. Rock musician Andrew Farriss (INXS) is 43. Movie director Quentin Tarantino is 39. Rock musician Derrick McKenzie (Jamiroquai) is 38. Actress Talisa Soto is 35. Actress Pauley Perrette is 33. Singer Mariah Carey is 32.


UC professor to call off Asian boycott of nuclear labs

By Michelle Locke The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

A professor who urged Asian-Americans to boycott national weapons labs to protest the treatment of nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee is close to calling off the action in exchange for promised workplace changes. 

Ling-Chi Wang said Tuesday he is prepared to start a recruiting drive if the agreement to change hiring practices and improve working conditions, now pending before officials in Washington, is finalized. 

“I think the labs realized they had a real serious problem,” said Wang, director of Asian-American studies at UC Berkeley. 

Wang initiated the boycott two years ago in response to the firing of Lee from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. 

Lee, a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in Taiwan, was arrested in December 1999 on suspicion of spying for China and indicted on 59 felony counts alleging he transferred nuclear weapons information to portable computer tapes. 

Although he denied passing secrets and was never charged with espionage, he was held in solitary confinement for nine months. After the government’s case fell apart, Lee pleaded guilty to a single felony count of downloading sensitive material and was freed in September 2000. The judge in the case apologized to Lee. 

After Lee was fired, Asian scientists at the national labs reported an increase in what they perceived to be racist incidents, ranging from cutting remarks to denied promotions. The Lee case also proved a platform for long-buried resentments over how Asian-Americans are treated and paid at the labs. 

It was difficult to determine how many scientists may have shunned the labs because of the boycott, which was endorsed by Asian-Pacific Americans in Higher Education and the Association of Asian American Studies. 

A number of Asian employees left the labs and officials reported fewer applications from Asian graduate students, but administrators said it was possible outside factors, such as the dot-com boom, played a role. 

“It’s clear that the boycott did happen. It is not clear to me what effect it had,” said Jeff Garberson, spokesman for the University of California, which runs the Los Alamos and Livermore national laboratories under contract to the Energy Department. The nation’s third weapons lab, Sandia National Laboratory, also in New Mexico, is run by Lockheed-Martin. 

Some Asian-Americans opposed the boycott, saying prejudice should be fought, not fled. Still, the public disavowal was certainly an embarrassment for lab officials. 

“A sign of reconciliation is very welcome,” Garberson said. 

The boycott hasn’t officially been called off and Wang said it won’t be until lab and federal officials sign off on the new plan that, among other things, addresses increasing promotion and research opportunities for Asian-Americans and all other minorities at the labs. 

At Los Alamos, for instance, there are three Asian-Americans in top management positions now, compared to none five years ago. 

Wang said he’s encouraged that lab officials have been looking into the treatment of Asian-American workers and also have made some promotions in recent months. 

“I take these to be positive signs,” Wang said. 

The agreement has been sent to the National Nuclear Security Administration of the Energy Department, which oversees the labs. 

Concerns about how minority lab employees are treated have not gone away. A class-action suit charging women are paid less is pending against Livermore and another suit claims Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders are paid less than whites. 

“I am really looking for fundamental changes of the lab for all employees,” said Wang. “The easiest thing for the lab to do is to promote people. The hardest thing is to change the culture within the lab, the way they view Asian-Americans and treat Asian-Americans.” 


Retired sheriff’s deputy kills four children, himself

SBy Kim Baca The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

MERCED — A retired sheriff’s deputy fatally shot his 5-year-old daughter and his three teen-age stepchildren before killing himself Tuesday while his ex-wife was jogging, investigators said. 

Christine McFadden found her 17-year-old daughter lying dead in a hallway near her bedroom when she returned to the house shortly after 7 a.m., said Merced County Sheriff’s Sgt. Tom Cavallero. 

She rushed next door to call police and then went back to the gray ranch-style home with deputies to find her three other children and her ex-husband lying dead in separate bedrooms. 

“It looks like they had been sleeping,” Cavallero said. 

Former Santa Clara County sheriff’s deputy John Hogan, 49, was found in the bed of the master bedroom, holding his dead 5-year-old daughter, Michelle Hogan, in his arms. 

“No word can explain walking through that,” said sheriff’s commander Mark Pazin. “I can’t put it into words, it’s horrifying.” 

Melanie Willis, 17, and Stanley Willis, 15, were students at Golden Valley High School. Stuart Willis, 14, was an eighth grader and Michelle was in preschool at Our Lady of Mercy School. 

Melanie, a junior, was a straight-A student, ranked second in her class of 467 students and was on the ballot Friday to become senior class vice president. Stanley was on the baseball team. 

“They were very positive and engaging kids,” said Golden Valley principal Ralf Swenson. “Melanie had some very high goals for herself. I think she talked about going to Stanford.” 

Students at the school scribbled messages about their grief on a huge banner. Counselors were brought in to discuss the killings. The school is still recovering from a Halloween car accident that killed three students, Swenson said. 

At Valley Animal Hospital, where McFadden works as a veterinarian, a sign on the door said it was closed because of a great tragedy. Behind the locked door, people were consoling each other with hugs. 

Hogan and McFadden married in December 1995. Three years later, she filed for divorce and for a restraining order, claiming he was verbally abusive and used foul language around the children, according to papers filed in Merced Family Law Court. 

“My husband has a very bad temper and when he gets angry he explodes,” McFadden wrote in her application for a restraining order in June 1998, three months after filing for divorce. 

The divorce was finalized last year. 

Hogan retired as a deputy in 1993 for undisclosed medical reasons after 10 years on the force, said Terrance Helm of the Santa Clara sheriff’s department. 

Hogan apparently got into his ex-wife’s house after she and a neighbor went jogging at 6 a.m. 

“Nobody could ever foresee something like this,” Pazin said. 

Merced deputies have been shaken by grisly crime scenes in recent years. 

In the summer of 2000, a Delhi teen-ager beheaded his mother and was found sitting naked in her blood, reading the Bible. 

Three weeks earlier, an intruder with a pitchfork broke into a rural farm house and stabbed three children, killing a boy and girl and injuring one of their older sisters. The attacker was gunned down as he lunged at sheriff’s deputies. 

The shooting Tuesday took place in a neighborhood of large homes on spacious, manicured lawns. 

Word of the killings spread quickly, and students at Our Lady of Mercy School, a nearby Roman Catholic elementary school that all the children had attended, were notified after arriving at school. 

At a time usually devoted to Holy Week activities, pupils prayed for the slain children during a special Mass. 

Principal Brenda Feehan showed reporters a 1998 picture of Melanie, with braces on her teeth and her brown hair in curls. 

“They were bright and full of hope and positive, with terrific senses of humor,” Feehan said. “It doesn’t make sense.” 


Court says nonunion members must pay for unionizing activities

By David Krafvets The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — A federal appeals court says labor unions may charge nonmembers for recruiting new members at competing companies. 

In 1988, the U.S. Supreme Court said it is OK to charge employees who decline to join a unionized workplace for the costs associated with collective bargaining. Those workers are so-called “free riders” and obtain the wages and benefits of union members who pay full dues. 

Now the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a Monday ruling that could strengthen the finances of unions, says that unionizing efforts fall within the realm of collective bargaining. 

Unions are “permitted to charge all employees, members and nonmembers alike, the costs involved in organizing, at least when organizing employers within the same competitive market as the bargaining unit employer,” the 11-member appeals court ruled Monday. 

The court reasoned that unionizing fits within the collective bargaining process because organizing competing employees may be crucial to improving wages, benefits and working conditions of a collecting bargaining unit. 

While the Supreme Court said unions could charge nonmembers of a unionized workplace the same amount it charges union members for collective bargaining, the court said nonmembers could not be charged fees for lobbying and other political goals. 

In the case decided Monday, supermarket and meat processing workers who quit the United Food and Commercial Workers Union complained that they were being charged nonmember fees that helped pay for union organizing activities. 

The National Labor Relations Board, a referee of labor-management disputes, ruled in October 1999 they should have to pay, saying that recruiting new members indirectly bolsters a union’s bargaining clout to the benefit of members, as well as nonmembers. 

The ruling generally impacts workers in 28 states. In the other 22 so-called right-to-work states, workers are not required to join a union or pay collective bargaining fees. 

The 22 states are Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wyoming. 

Anti-union groups said they would ask the Supreme Court to overturn the decision. 

The case is United Food and Commercial Workers Union v. Mulder, 99-71317.


Punk rocker Jello Biafra sues former Dead Kennedys bandmates

The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

OAKLAND — A rift between singer Jello Biafra and his former band, Dead Kennedys, is growing wider with more legal action. 

Biafra’s attorney has filed suit in Alameda Superior Court alleging his former bandmates are recording new music with a Biafra impersonator. 

The real Biafra, whose birth name is Eric Reed Boucher, also alleges his former bandmates used his name, picture and identity to promote new live recordings and performances. 

Biafra is asking for punitive and compensatory damages of more than $25,000 from the three remaining original Dead Kennedys, including Ray Pepperell (“East Bay Ray”), Geoffrey Lyall (“Klauss Flouride”) and Darren Henley (“D.H. Peligro”). 

The band started in San Francisco in 1978 and developed a worldwide following for its anti-establishment songs such as “Kill the Poor” and “California Uber Alles.” The performers formed a partnership called “Decay Music” that supposedly ended when the group split in 1986. 

A jury ruled in favor of Biafra’s bandmates in 2000, saying the singer didn’t promote the band’s music or pay back royalties as promised. 

Now, Biafra claims the band is also failing to dissolve Decay Music partnership assets as ordered by the San Francisco court in 2000. 


PG&E could get reorganization plan by mid-June

By Karen Gaudette The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — The thousands of banks, businesses and power companies owed money by California’s largest utility may get to vote as early as June on one of two dueling plans to settle their debts. 

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Dennis Montali told Pacific Gas and Electric Co., as well as the state of California and other creditors, on Tuesday that he hopes PG&E’s $13 billion bankruptcy will have reached that phase by mid-June. 

That gives PG&E and the Public Utilities Commission less than three months to persuade the utility’s creditors to vote for their drastically different plans for the utility’s future. 

PG&E claims the only viable way to climb out of debt and relieve the state of having to buy electricity for its 4.6 million customers is to transfer $8 billion of assets to its federally regulated parent company, away from state oversight. 

It then would borrow against the value of those power plants, transmission lines and lands and pay its creditors with the money, and claims debts would be paid in full with interest without a rate hike. 

But the state, consumer advocates and even some federal agencies claim PG&E’s intentions go beyond raising money. They say the utility is using bankruptcy to challenge dozens of state laws that prevent it from, among other things, charging potentially lucrative market prices for electricity. 

The PUC, which regulates PG&E, would lose control over how much PG&E can charge for the electricity it churns at its hydroelectric, nuclear, renewable and gas-fired power plants under that deal. It hopes instead to convince creditors that PG&E should use the roughly $5 billion of cash it has accumulated from ratepayers over the past year and borrow more money to pay its debts. 

The official creditors committee currently backs PG&E’s plan, which they claim will get them paid faster.  

But the PUC has pledged to mire PG&E’s plan in legal challenges should it win, and hopes creditors will side with the state because of that threat. 

Montali has agreed in part with PG&E’s critics by ruling last month that federal bankruptcy law does not expressly allow PG&E to disregard dozens of state laws and regulations while crafting its plan to emerge from bankruptcy. 

However, he has allowed PG&E to appeal his ruling in federal court, and said the utility can move forward as long as it convinces him that the public won’t be harmed by escaping those laws and that there’s simply no other way to dig the utility out of its financial woes. 

At a bankruptcy hearing Tuesday, various creditors, including California counties wanting to know the future of property tax revenues from PG&E lands within their borders, asked Montali to order PG&E to release more details about its intentions. 

Montali agreed with The Utility Reform Network that PG&E must provide a more detailed breakdown of how much it intends to charge for electricity and natural gas in the coming years. He said, however, that PG&E is not required to discuss the legal feasibility of its plan at this point, only to describe its machinations. 

To start the voting process by mid-June, Montali prescribed a speedy schedule for both sides to campaign for their plans and respond to objections. The PUC must file a detailed description of how its plan will work by April 15. Meanwhile, PG&E will continue ironing out the details in its own so-called disclosure statement — what Montali describes as a voter’s pamphlet to help creditors decide whom to support. 

PG&E filed for federal bankruptcy protection nearly a year ago after after high power prices spawned by the state’s energy crunch forced it into debt. 

Ongoing antagonism between PG&E and its regulators at the PUC prompted Montali to order the two groups to work with a mediator to at least discuss their differences. 

——— 

On the Net: 

PG&E: http://www.pge.com 

U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Northern District of California: http://www.canb.ca.gov 

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


Investment manager charged with massive Ponzi scheme

By Danny Pollock The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Investment manager Reed Slatkin was charged Tuesday with orchestrating a massive Ponzi scheme in which he solicited more than $593 million from about 800 investors over a 15-year period, federal prosecutors said. 

Slatkin, 53, co-founded Internet company EarthLink Inc. and separately managed investments for celebrities, online executives and socialites. 

Slatkin agreed to plead guilty to the charges, acknowledging that he is responsible for at least $254 million in losses, Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office, said in a prepared statement. 

A federal bankruptcy court trustee said in December that Slatkin knowingly ran the scheme that funneled money from new investors to old investors who had been contributing funds since 1986. 

“Mr. Slatkin’s agreement with the government is a reflection of his decision to accept full responsibility for his conduct and move forward by continuing his collaborations with both government authorities and his creditors,” said attorney Frederick D. Friedman, who represents Slatkin. 

Slatkin is accused of five counts of mail fraud, three counts of wire fraud, six counts of money laundering and one count of conspiracy to obstruct justice during an investigation conducted by the Securities and Exchange Commission. 

In a statement of facts contained in the plea agreement, Slatkin said he portrayed himself as a successful financial adviser and provided investors with account statements that purported to show that investors were achieving above-market returns on their investments. 

However, Slatkin generally did not buy securities as he told investors. Instead, he allegedly provided victims with false account statements that showed the fabricated returns, Mrozek said. 

An arraignment date in U.S. District Court has not yet been set. Slatkin has agreed to surrender to authorities when he is arraigned. 

The 15 charges carry a maximum possible penalty of 105 years in federal prison and fines of up to $3.75 million. 

Slatkin resigned from EarthLink’s board last April 26 and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on May 1. 

Last year, he invoked his 5th Amendment right when he faced about 100 former clients and lawyers for the first time at a bankruptcy hearing involving the claims. 

He did, however, make a short statement before being excused from the proceedings. 

“I just want to say that I’m here today, that I’m not hiding,” Slatkin said “And I just wanted you to know that.” 

The statement was met with groans from those who attended. 

An ongoing analysis by court-appointed bankruptcy trustee R. Todd Neilson identified Slatkin assets of less than $45 million last year. 

The FBI raided Slatkin’s Santa Barbara-area home and offices in May as part of the fraud investigation. 


State job statistics underestimated losses

The Associated Press
Wednesday March 27, 2002

SACRAMENTO— Government statistics appear to have underestimated job losses last year in California, a sign that the recession was worse than previously thought, according to a newspaper report Tuesday. 

New data shows that the state had about 180,000 fewer jobs in September than officially reported by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics and the state Employment Development Department, according to confidential data obtained by The San Francisco Chronicle. 

The new statistics, from unemployment insurance tax filings, normally are made public only once a year. 

The miscount raises the question of whether official employment statistics gave an accurate portrait of the economy and whether that data can be relied on by planners. 

For example, 180,000 fewer jobholders would mean an unanticipated loss of roughly $200 million in annual tax revenue for California, said Ted Gibson, former chief economist for the state Finance Department. 

That’s something the state can ill afford when it faces a budget deficit of as much as $15 billion. 

The shortfall represented about 1.2 percent of the state’s total of 14.7 million reported jobs in September, the most recent month for which new data are available. 

Bureau officials said they had begun a review to find out why the new data showed so many fewer jobs than official employment statistics. 

“We do see a bigger difference than we are comfortable with,” said Pat Getz, the bureau’s division chief for current employment statistics. 

The agency couldn’t yet explain the divergence, Getz said. 

State Employment Department officials confirmed the accuracy of the 180,000 September job shortfall in California but played down its significance. Different employment data sources are “never in complete agreement,” said Richard Holden, chief of the department’s labor market information division. 

At issue is the so-called nonfarm payroll jobs numbers released monthly by the bureau for the nation and each of the 50 states. They rank second only to the official unemployment rate in the attention they get as measures of the labor market’s health. 

The payroll numbers are based on a survey of employers designed by the bureau and conducted by state labor departments. In California, the Employment Department collects data from just under 40,000 establishments across the full range of industries. 

But the payroll numbers are estimates rather than strict head counts and are subject to errors inherent in deriving statistics from a sample. 

For that reason, the bureau supplements its monthly survey by tracking a separate set of data — quarterly unemployment insurance tax filings. Those filings by employers provide the closest thing to an actual count of jobs. 

Once a year, the bureau releases a formal revision of the less accurate payroll jobs figures based on information from these filings. 

“That is the bible,” said James Glassman, senior U.S. economist with J.P. Morgan Securities about the quarterly tax filing data. “It is viewed as the more accurate view of the labor market.” 

The gap between the number of California jobs found in the payroll survey and the number counted in quarterly tax filings has widened dramatically. 


A ‘Magic’ day for Davis

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Former Los Angeles Lakers star Earvin “Magic” Johnson endorsed Gov. Gray Davis in an East Bay appearance Monday afternoon. 

“I believe in him. I know him personally,” said Johnson, speaking at the Poplar Community Recreation Center on Union Street in West Oakland. “He is the right man to carry us for another four years.” 

“I’m honored to have you on the team,” said Davis, who is running for re-election in November against Republican nominee Bill Simon. “You can play any position you want.” 

Davis went on to tout his record on the economy and education, noting that 190,000 students received scholarships to attend state universities through his Cal Grant program last year. 

Johnson, who endorsed Davis at a similar Los Angeles event earlier in the day, praised the governor for providing African-American youth with opportunities to attend college and argued that Republicans have not done enough. 

“Over and over again, they haven’t delivered,” said Johnson, of the Republicans. “They only call us when they need us, and right now they need us.” 

The Simon campaign did not return calls for comment before the Planet’s deadline. 

Community members who attended the invite-only event peppered Davis and Johnson with questions on local issues, from jobs for Oakland residents on the Bay Bridge construction project, to Johnson’s plans for investment in Oakland. 

Oakland Vice-Mayor Larry Reid asked Davis to encourage contractors to hire Oakland residents for the construction of a new Bay Bridge span, expected to generate about 67,000 jobs over the five-year life of the project. 

According to Reid, Davis offered, after the event, to set up a meeting with city officials and representatives from Caltrans, the statewide transportation agency, to address the issue. 

Johnson, who owns several several movie theaters and Starbucks cafes in depressed areas, maintains a Starbucks cafe in the Fruitvale section of Oakland. 

Johnson said he is looking into expanded investment in West Oakland and the entire Bay Area. 


Female wrestlers finish big to end their high school careers

By Nathan Fox Special to the Daily Planet
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Wrestlers Christie Ravera and Regina Alexander wrapped up their Berkeley High careers in high style this weekend, finishing second and sixth in the nation at the United States Girls’ Wrestling Association high school tournament held in Lake Orion, Mich. 

Ravera, two-time California state champion, earned herself a national title shot on Sunday with a 4-1 semifinal win against Siobhan Bower, of New York. But she faced an uphill battle in the 134-pound championship match against East Detroit’s Brandi Rosenbrock. Rosenbrock, a junior, had won the national tournament two times — the first time as an eighth grader — and had barreled through the quarter- and semi-finals with first-round pins before meeting Ravera. 

“I was pretty sure [coach Hugh Johnson] thought I wasn’t going to make it out of the first round against her,” Ravera said. “She’s an incredible wrestler.” 

Ravera managed to give Rosenbrock a battle, however, and for two rounds Ravera controlled the pace of the action, if not the score, with a complement of strong defensive moves. Rosenbrock was ahead 19-3 with .6 seconds remaining in the second round when she finally pinned Ravera for her third national title. 

“I got beat really badly,” laughed Ravera. “I couldn’t do any moves on her. At one point I had a single-leg hold, was driving into her, and thought I was going to knock her on her butt — but she immediately adjusted. That was the only time I even came close.” 

Alexander also fared well at the tournament, finishing sixth at 126 pounds. Alexander lost her morning semifinal match to team Hawaii’s Jennifer Miyahira by technical fall. 

“The girls out there today were real good,” said Alexander, also a senior. “I mean Hawaii — I think their whole team is, like, judo champion or something.” 

Alexander is sixth in the nation in her weight class — in her first year wrestling. 

“Regina picked it up as a novice this year,” Johnson said. “She worked very hard — she perfected just a few moves, and they worked for her at the elite level of high school girls wrestling.” 

Alexander and Ravera, second and sixth in the nation in their respective weight classes, will both now take a break from wrestling. 

“Part of it has to do with limited opportunities in colleges that they want to go to,” Johnson said. “They’re more focused on their academic future. If there were college programs at the schools they wanted to attend, they might consider competing.”  

Currently, the USGWA Web site lists only six colleges in the nation which boast an intercollegiate women’s wrestling program: University of Minnesota-Morris, Missouri Valley College, Cumberland College (Williamsburg, Kentucky), Pacific University (Forest Grove, Oregon), Neosho County Community College (Chanute, Kansas) and Menlo College (Atherton). 

It’s not surprising that Ravera and Alexander will be choosing a school outside of that limited list. Ravera is headed to either UC Santa Cruz or to the University of Colorado, Boulder, and Alexander will be attending either San Jose State or Fullerton State. 

“Most of the colleges that have it aren’t the type of places that I’d want to go,” Ravera said. “I’m actually looking forward to taking a break from training for a while.” 

Of course, “taking a break from training” is a relative term when it comes from the mouth of an elite wrestler. Ravera will continue to pursue competitive kickboxing, as well as her ongoing training to be a Kung-Fu teacher. Alexander, meanwhile, intends to play club-level rugby wherever she ends up, and will consider wrestling at the club level as well. 

“I think it will happen someday,” said Johnson of the proliferation of intercollegiate wrestling programs for girls. “But it will take a while.”


Palestinians want to annihilate other religions

Gabe Kurtz student, UC Berkeley
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Editor: 

 

Although I normally do not discuss the specifics of issues pertaining to Israel and Palestine, today I am compelled to dive in. Recently Sharon has considered giving land back to the Palestinians, the Gaza strip and West Bank, to appease his critics from the Western world. They cry of crimes against humanity, occupation, and tattooing; Joe and Jane Blows forehead furloughs when they hear this. Jane and Joe hear Peace and they get misty eyed, they hear occupation and their face[s] clouds over with a mongoloid’s rage. 

The overall goal is stated as peace in the Middle  

East. A slogan brandished by the left, middle and phony right back as far back as I can remember. Peace in the Middle East even the seams in the side of Thomas Moore would be splitting at hearing this. The goal of Palestinians is the annihilation of opposing religious forces: Jewish, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu etc. The thought that the people of Palestine would be geared towards peace, reveal a deep naivete in the speaker. 

If and when Sharon gives the Palestinians their a territory of their own, free of Israeli influence, it would be disastrous. Sharon would be known as the current Chamberlain, allowing an unspeakable evil to evolve before his eyes. Within days of Palestinians having their own state the suicide bombings would continue, and blood would still flow through the streets. The left would probably put this down to a deep seeded Palestinian rage, lashing out at their oppressors. Keep on supplying these murderers with excuses and you will bear the burden for their actions. 

Palestine would probably be labeled a terrorist state within three months of inception. Blame yourselves when they bring it home ... there will never be peace when the Palestinian people are geared towards war. We should not allow history to repeat itself before our eyes. Palestine must be closely supervised so they will never gain the means to undertake their holy war against the bulk of the worlds religions. 

 

 

Gabe Kurtz  

student, UC Berkeley 


Black actors’ reign at Oscars may not boost minority roles

By Anthony Breznican The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Denzel Washington and Halle Berry made history with their Academy Award wins, but minority groups say diversity must extend beyond Hollywood’s glamour night — and include other groups such as Asians, Hispanics and American Indians. 

“What’s historic about equality? Historic for me will be when all people of color are represented and are capable of garnering these awards,” said Sonny Skyhawk, president of the advocacy group American Indians in Film. 

Skyhawk, an actor who’s appeared in “Young Guns II” and “Geronimo: An American Legend,” joined other show-business minority leaders Monday in saying the Oscars and entertainment industry in general was overdue for broader racial representation. 

Felix Sanchez, president of the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, was optimistic about the significance of the black victories for others. 

“This is the new dynamic,” he said. “I think we are going to see more and more success stories for minorities ... I hope this means (studios) are going to tap more writers with diverse stories and cast more actors that represent the true face of American diversity.” 

Some minority Oscar winners include Japanese-born Miyoshi Umeki for her supporting role in 1957’s “Sayonara” and Cambodian native Haing S. Ngor in 1984’s “The Killing Fields.” Meanwhile, American Indian actor Graham Greene was nominated for his supporting role in 1990’s “Dances With Wolves.” 

Chris Wang, an agent with Toronto-based Asian Action Talents management company, said he wants more producers to keep an open mind about casting Asians in roles they might otherwise give to whites. 

“It’s going to take a long time for Asian actors to get those roles. It’s not going to change overnight,” he said. “But we’ve seen a lot of changes, and it’s getting a lot better for good performers in general.” 

The Academy Awards have honored Hispanics several times, with Mexican-born Anthony Quinn winning two supporting actor prizes in the 1950s for “Viva Zapata!” and “Lust for Life.” 

Last year, Puerto Rican Benicio Del Toro took home the supporting actor trophy for “Traffic,” and Rita Moreno, also Puerto Rican, received the supporting actress award in 1962 for “West Side Story.” 

This year, however, the Hispanic community lost a chance for an Oscar when Jennifer Connelly claimed the supporting actress award for playing Alicia Nash, the wife of delusional mathematician John Nash in best-picture winner “A Beautiful Mind.” 

The real woman she portrayed was born in El Salvador, while Connelly was not. 

“It’s unfortunate they portray a real person and the ethnicity is not included,” said Manny Alfaro, a New York stage performer and executive director of the Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors. “It hurts us who are working, coming up the pipeline.” 

Some organizations say minorities will have power in front of the camera only when there is more minority representation behind the scenes as directors, writers and producers. 

Washington, who received a supporting award for 1989’s “Glory,” won this year’s Oscar for playing the flamboyantly corrupt cop in “Training Day,” becoming the first black to named best actor since Sidney Poitier for 1963’s “Lilies of the Field.” Now that a trail has been blazed for blacks, he suggested, other minority actors now must struggle for more significant roles. 

“I don’t recall seeing any Asian Americans, women or men, being recognized and not too many Latin Americans,” Washington said on NBC’s “Today” show. “So there is still lot of work (to be done.)” 

Washington and Berry became the first black duo to take the top-acting honors, and Berry’s win for “Monster’s Ball” made her the first black woman in history to claim the best actress award. 

Kweisi Mfume, president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, praised the Academy Awards but said more must be done to promote Hollywood diversity. 

“If this is a sign that Hollywood is finally ready to give opportunity and judge performance based on skill and not on skin color, then it is a good thing,” Mfume said. “However, if this proves to be a momentary flash in a long history of neglect, then Hollywood has failed to learn the real meaning of equality.” 

Other black actors predicted Berry’s and Washington’s wins could signal that studios are more comfortable giving prestige roles to minorities. 

“It’s one step at a time,” said former “L.A. Law” co-star Blair Underwood. “There’s no way that you can go back from the progress made tonight. That window has been opened.” 


Compiled by Guy Poole
Tuesday March 26, 2002


Tuesday, March 26

 

 

Tuesday Tea Party 

6 - 8 p.m. 

First Congregational Church 

Harrison and 27th St., Oakland 

Open gatherings to build a new peace movement. 839-5877. 

 

 


Wednesday, Mar. 27

 

 

City Commons Club, 

Great Decisions Program 

10 a.m. - noon 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Dan Kammen, professor of Energy and Resources Group and director of Energy and Science, UC Berkeley; “Energy and the Environment.” 

$5. 848-3533. 

 

Prose Writers’ Workshop 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Berkeley/Richmond Jewish  

Community Center Library 

1414 Walnut St. 

From Op-ed to fiction, memoir to the feature article. Workshop format. Free. 524-3034. 

 

Berkeley Gray Panthers  

General Meeting 

1:30 p.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center 

The Clean Money Campaign and the League of Women Voters will talk about Clean Money, Clean Politics: Campaign Finance Reform in a Democracy. 548-9696, graypanthers@hotmail.com. 

 


Thursday, March 28

 

 

Seed Swap 

7 - 9 p.m. 

Ecology Center 

2530 San Pablo Ave. 

Bay Area Seed Interchange Library's annual Seed Swap. Bring seed and envelopes. A raffle for live plants. 823-4769. 

 


Friday, March 29

 

 

City Commons Club 

12:30 p.m. 

Berkeley City Club 

2315 Durant Ave. 

Peter Hillier, assistant city manager, transportation; “Bringing About a Paradigm Shift.” $1. 848-3533. 

 

Berkeley Women in Black 

noon - 1 p.m. 

Bancroft and Telegraph Ave. 

Standing in solidarity with Israeli and Palestinian women to urge an end to the occupation and push the peace process forward. 548-6310, wibberkeley.org. 

 


Saturday, March 30

 

 

Keep Kids Street Safe 

1:30 - 4 p.m. 

YWCA 

1515 Franklin St., Oakland 

A national campaign helping keep children safe and healthy. Highlights include food, prizes and music. 530-1319, compeace@concentric.net 

 


Monday, April 1

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 

Renewable Energy Lecture 

7 - 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Adult School 

University and Bonar St. 

Peter Asmus discusses the viability of renewable energy resources and how they can be used in Berkeley. 981-5435 

 


Tuesday, April 2

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Saturday, April 6

 

 

Library Grand Opening 

1 p.m. 

Berkeley Public Library 

The celebration will include a ribbon cutting ceremony, a keynote speech by Alice Walker, musical guests, and building tours. 548-7102 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 - 11 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class in basic personal preparedness for emergency situations. 981-5605 

 


Monday, April 8

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Tuesday, April 9

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Thursday, April 11

 

 

Bicycle Maintenance 101 

7 p.m. 

REI 

1338 San Pablo Ave. 

Rodian Magri will teach participants how to perform basic adjustments on their bikes to keep them in good working condition. 527-7377  

 


Saturday, April 13

 

 

Emergency Preparedness Class 

9 a.m. - 1 a.m. 

Emergency Operations Center 

997 Cedar St. 

A class disaster mental health. 981-5605 

 


Monday, April 15

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part one of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Tuesday, April 16

 

 

Respite Caregiver Volunteer Training 

9 a.m. - 12 p.m. 

Catholic Charities 

433 Jefferson St., Oakland 

Part two of a two day training for anyone interested in becoming a respite care volunteer. 768-3147, betty@cceb.org 

 


Thursday, April 18

 

 

Walking in the Footsteps of John Muir 

7 p.m. 

REI 

1338 San Pablo Ave. 

Cherry Good gives a slide lecture sharing highlights from her journey to find out what she could about John Muir. 527-7470 


Solano eatery mysteriously closes

By Jia-Rui Chong Daily Planet staff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

The King Tsin restaurant, a neighborhood favorite for spicy Chinese food on Solano Avenue, has been closed for weeks. But the only notice to passersby and would-be diners is a padlock on the front door. 

Swen Swenson, who had just returned from Los Angeles two days ago, was taking two friends to lunch on Monday. He peered into the darkened window.  

“I used to eat here because it was cheap and good,” said Swenson. 

Turning to his friends, he said, “I guess we’ll have to go to that Chinese place down the street.” 

The Hills were similarly confused when they went there for dinner last week.  

“It’s been doing so well there for so many years that I’m just mystified,” said Patricia Hill, who used to dine there with her husband once every six weeks. 

A woman who works at Mayfair Hair and Nail Care, next door to King Tsin, confirmed that the restaurant has been empty for the last couple of weeks.  

It had only re-opened about half a year ago under new management, she said. “Business did not pick up so I guess they closed.” 

Other neighbors confirmed the change in management and the slow business. 

But the cook at Jon-Jon, a sushi and noodle counter, said that last Saturday she did notice that the doors were opened for some sort of party. Otherwise, the space has been quiet. 

The Solano Ave Association, the merchants’ group, was not aware that King Tsin had closed.


Diamondbacks plow over A’s 7-1

The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

PHOENIX — Luis Gonzalez hit his major league-leading eighth home run as the Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the Oakland Athletics 7-1 Monday. 

Brian Anderson pitched five scoreless innings, allowing three hits and striking out two, to gain the victory. Tony Womack had three hits and Mark Grace had two as the World Series champion Diamondbacks improved to a major league best 21-8. 

Jose Guillen drove home a run in the first, and Junior Spivey scored on an error. 

The A’s had a chance to take the lead in the sixth when they loaded the bases with one out. Mark Holzemer induced Miguel Tejada to ground into a double play. 

Jeremy Giambi hit a sacrifice fly in the seventh for Oakland, which has lost four of five. 

A’s starter Cory Lidle lasted 6 2-3 innings, allowing three runs and seven hits. Reliever Mike Holtz allowed four runs and five hits in one-third of an inning, including Gonzalez’s two-run homer. 

Eric Chavez had three hits, including a pair of doubles, for Oakland. 

Chris Donnells also drove in a run for Arizona.


What is the definition of insanity?

Tom Mitsoff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Editor: 

 

Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary has it as the following: 

1 a : a deranged state of the mind usually occurring as a specific disorder (as schizophrenia) and usually excluding such states as mental retardation, psychoneurosis, and various character disorders b : a mental disorder 

2 : such unsoundness of mind or lack of understanding as prevents one from having the mental capacity required by law to enter into a particular relationship, status, or transaction or as removes one from criminal or civil responsibility 

3 a : extreme folly or unreasonableness b : something utterly foolish or unreasonable 

Don’t all of the above seem to describe a mother of five children who would systematically kill them, one by one, by drowning them in the family bathtub last June 20? 

A Texas jury didn’t see it that way, and found Andrea Yates guilty of two counts of capital murder earlier this month. 

Yates, 37, confessed to the drownings but pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. After a two-week trial in which her defense argued that she did not know her conduct was wrong, a jury of eight women and four men found her guilty after only 3 * hours of deliberation.  

Yates told psychiatrists she drowned the children because they were not “righteous” and would burn in hell if she did not take their lives while they were still innocent. That in and of itself would seem to indicate a knowledge of the nature of the actions, albeit based on her understanding of God’s law as opposed to Texas law. 

But a 1999 psychiatric evaluation by physicians in Texas resulted in a diagnosis of postpartum depression with psychosis. Postpartum (following birth) depressions are not uncommon, but for most women they are transitory and pass without major incident. However, some become full-blown depressions with psychoses, which are mental derangements characterized by defective or lost contact with reality. 

The medical report indicated that she had been hospitalized after attempting overdose with prescription medication, and later was under observation after her husband had to forceably remove a knife which she was holding to her own neck. 

Call it insanity or call it mental illness, but the woman had a history of impaired judgement. 

The insanity defense dates to 1843, when Daniel M’Naghten was acquitted for attempting to assassinate British Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel. M’Naghten attempted to stalk Peel, but mistook Peel’s secretary, Ed Drummond, for Peel. 

M’Naghten shot and wounded Drummond, who subsequently died. The evidence at trial showed M’Naghten had delusions of persecution. An insanity plea was entered with the claim that the crime was the result of M’Naghten's delusion. The facts that M’Naghten had killed in broad daylight without any plan of escape were seen as very important, as was the defense claim that M’Naghten could not distinguish between right and wrong. The jury deliberated for less than two minutes before returning a verdict of not guilty by reason of insanity. 

As the result of that verdict and public outcry, a new code was adopted in Britain which also became the standard in most of the United States. Insanity was strictly defined under that code, and the delusions that the defendant suffered had to be so strong that he either did not understand his actions or was unable to appreciate their wrongfulness.  

In the next century, insanity laws were expanded. A person might be found not guilty if his delusions were so strong he could not control his behavior even if he recognized others would see them as wrong. 

When John Hinckley, Jr. was acquitted of the attempted assassination of President Reagan in 1981 based on that definition of insanity, laws in Texas and across the country were changed to eliminate the provision allowing a defendant to claim the inability to control his conduct as insanity. 

While the definition of insanity has been consistent in the dictionary, the same can’t be said for the legal system's definition. Review is needed for the process of law which would allow someone with such a history of mental illness like Yates to be sentenced to life in prison without any possibility for reconsideration if she is able to get treatment and somehow get well. And there is precedent for the legal system to make changes in the way it defines and adjudicates insanity. 

 

Tom Mitsoff


TV Ratings for the Oscars hit low mark

By David Bauder The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

NEW YORK — Denzel Washington, Halle Berry and the makers of “A Beautiful Mind” may have been celebrating on Monday. But ABC wasn’t. 

Sunday night’s Academy Awards telecast drew the lowest rating in history, according to Nielsen Media Research. Its 25.4 rating was worse than the last year’s previous low, 26.2. 

ABC estimated the telecast drew 41.8 million viewers, down from the 42.9 million people who watched in 2001. 

The viewership figure was the lowest since 1997, when just over 40 million people were watching as “The English Patient” was named best picture. The rating was smaller this year, even though the viewership figure was higher, because there are more homes with televisions now than in 1997. 

Earlier Monday, Nielsen’s preliminary measurements of the 53 biggest media markets were up 2 percent over last year. But the numbers sank when smaller cities and rural areas were taken into account. 

“This had, obviously, less appeal in the heartland than in recent years,” said Larry Hyams, ABC’s chief researcher. 

Although the telecast stretched to 12:53 a.m. on the East Coast, viewers stuck with it.  

The Oscars had a 23.7 rating for the final 20 minutes of the program. 

Washington and Berry became the first black duo to take the top-acting honors, and “A Beautiful Mind” was named best picture. 

A ratings point represents 1,055,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation’s estimated 105.5 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show. 

The show’s largest audience ever came in 1998, when 55 million people watched “Titanic” win a record-tying 11 Oscars, including best picture. 


Berkeley schools celebrate National Nutrition Month

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

According to a December report issued by U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher, obesity is reaching “epidemic proportions” and approaching tobacco as the most lethal killer in America.  

This month, the Berkeley Unified School District is confronting the epidemic head-on. 

In its second annual March celebration of National Nutrition Month, the district is sponsoring cooking demonstrations, vegetable tastings and spring plantings at schools throughout the system to promote healthy eating. 

“Most of the public is pretty aware of the tobacco issue...but the rising rates of childhood obesity and diabetes are alarming,” said Erica Peng, supervisor of the district’s nutrition network program. 

According to the Surgeon General’s report, more than 61 percent of adults and 14 percent of adolescents are affected by obesity, while 300,000 Americans die each year from health problems directly related to obesity. 

Satcher called for required physical education and healthy eating in public schools as two of the primary weapons in the fight to reduce obesity.  

Physical education is required in the Berkeley schools, kindergarten through 8th grade, and for two years in high school. 

The district, in collaboration with the city and several local non-profits, kicked off nutrition month with a March 12 event at the Farmers’ Market and a similar, March 16 event at the Ashby Flea Market. Activities included cooking demonstrations, games and a compost giveaway. 

Since then, gardening and cooking instructors at various schools have led spring plantings at school gardens, vegetable tastings and seed giveaways, among other activities. 

At John Muir Elementary School, students have donned capes and acted as “5 a Day” rangers, promoting the virtues of eating five servings of fruits and vegetables each day. 

“We’re hoping students will get a better idea of how to take care of their bodies,” said John Muir Principal Nancy D. Waters. 

Wednesday afternoon, at Emerson Elementary School, the after school program staff will line the cafetorium walls with six tables in a “nutrition merry-go-round.” Students will go from table to table, assembling healthy granola snacks at a “granola bar,” potting vegetables and decorating the pots, among other activities. Pupils will choose from various cooking utensils as prizes. 

Carrie Orth, cooking instructor at Emerson, said students will learn several lessons over the course of the day. At the granola bar, she said, they’ll have a lesson in measuring and apportionment, while the potting exercise will create a direct link between growing food and what children eat. 

The district provides cooking and gardening courses throughout the year through its nutrition network program.  

The program, currently in its third year, is funded in part by a federal grant from the United States Department of Agriculture. This year’s grant totaled $1.2 million. 

Schools that provide free and reduced lunch to over 50 percent of their students are eligible for the grant money. This year, 10 Berkeley schools qualify and the federal dollars are paying for cooking and gardening instructors at most of the schools. 

Waters said the instructors incorporate science and math lessons into their work every day. For instance, she said, students learn to measure caterpillars or study the effect of oxygen on decomposing vegetables.


Raiders’ Russell pleads innocent to sexual assault

By Justin Pritchard The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

ALAMEDA — Oakland Raiders defensive tackle Darrell Russell pleaded innocent to sexual assault charges on Monday. 

Russell and two friends were arrested early last month after a 27-year-old woman claimed she was drugged and raped in an Alameda home on Jan. 31. 

Russell was charged with 25 felonies as an accomplice. He has been free since posting bail on Feb. 7. Prosecutors contend Russell ran a videocamera that taped the woman being assaulted by at least one of his friends. 

Under California law, Russell could be found guilty of crimes committed by either of his two friends charged in the case if he did not intervene. 

Naeem Perry, 24, of Berkeley, and Ali Hayes, 27, of Oakland, also were charged in connection with the alleged assault. 

Prosecutor Kevin Murphy said Monday the woman could be asked to recount the alleged incident when the case resumes for a preliminary hearing June 10. 

Russell, the second overall pick in the 1997 draft out of Southern California, was a two-time Pro Bowl selection. 

He currently is serving a one-year NFL suspension for violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. 


Today in history

Staff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Tuesday, March 26, is the 85th day of 2002. There are 280 days left in the year. 

 

Highlight in History: 

Twenty years ago, on March 26, 1982, groundbreaking ceremonies took place in Washington, D.C., for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. 

 

On this date: 

In 1804, the Louisiana Purchase was divided into the Territory of Orleans and the District of Louisiana. 

In 1827, composer Ludwig van Beethoven died in Vienna. 

In 1875, poet Robert Frost was born in San Francisco. 

In 1885, the Eastman Dry Plate and Film Co. of Rochester, N.Y., manufactured the first commercial motion picture film. 

In 1892, poet Walt Whitman died in Camden, N.J. 

In 1911, playwright Tennessee Williams was born in Columbus, Miss. 

In 1962, the U.S. Supreme Court gave federal courts the power to order reapportionment of seats in a state legislature, a decision that eventually led to the doctrine of “one man, one vote.” 

In 1964, the musical play “Funny Girl” opened on Broadway. 

In 1971, East Pakistan proclaimed its independence, taking the name Bangladesh. 

In 1979, the Camp David peace treaty was signed by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat at the White House. 

Ten years ago: A judge in Indianapolis sentenced former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson to six years in prison for raping a Miss Black America contestant. (Tyson ended up serving three years.) 

Five years ago: The bodies of 39 members of the Heaven’s Gate techno-religious cult who’d committed suicide were found inside a mansion in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. Former drug counselor John G. Bennett Jr. pleaded no contest in Philadelphia to charges stemming from a $100 million charity fraud. 

One year ago: Comair pilots walked off the job, beginning a three-month strike after contract talks with the regional airline broke off. A fire in a Kenyan secondary school dormitory killed 67 students. 

 

Today’s Birthdays: Retired Army Gen. William C. Westmoreland is 88. Conductor-composer Pierre Boulez is 77. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor is 72. Actor-director Leonard Nimoy is 71. Actor Alan Arkin is 68. Actor James Caan is 62. Author Erica Jong is 60. Journalist Bob Woodward is 59. Singer Diana Ross is 58. Actor Johnny Crawford is 56. Rock singer Steven Tyler (Aerosmith) is 54. TV personality Vicki Lawrence is 53. Singer Teddy Pendergrass is 52. Comedian Martin Short is 52. Country singer Ronnie McDowell is 52. Country singer Dean Dillon is 47. Country singer Charly McClain is 46. TV personality Leeza Gibbons is 45. Actress Jennifer Grey is 42. Basketball player John Stockton is 40. Actor Michael Imperioli is 36. Rock musician James Iha (Smashing Pumpkins) is 34. Country singer Kenny Chesney is 34. Rapper Juvenile is 27.


News of the Weird

Staff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Iowa town gives away free land 

 

CHELSEA, Iowa — If you call Chelsea home in the next 12 months, it can be yours for free. 

In a blatant attempt at self-preservation, leaders in this small central Iowa town are giving away three ready-to-build lots to anyone willing to build a house here. 

Mayor Roger Ochs said the homespun giveaway is the centerpiece of a strategy to revive a hard-luck community desperate for new blood, a broader tax base and a new lease on life. 

“We just want to get some new people in here,” Ochs said of the city-owned lots, which offers a sweeping view of the Iowa River Valley. “If it takes giving away something to do it, then the City Council felt it was worth it.” 

After watching one family after another move away, many after the Iowa River flooded the town in 1993, Ochs and the council decided it was time to do something to reverse the trend. 

In 1997, the city council bought seven acres of land on a hill north of the city for $25,000, subdivided it into 15 lots and paid to install sewer, water and electricity. 

The nine lots remaining are selling at discounted prices, between $7,500 and $8,500, well below the cost paid to install utilities. They’ll go for free as long as the new owner agrees to begin construction within six months and finish the home within a year. 

 

Taking ‘Lord of the Flies’ to a higher level 

 

KEY WEST, Fla. — Kathe Betz used her experience playing the trumpet to win the Key West Conch Shell Blowing Contest. 

The retired high school art teacher from Milwaukee outperformed 40 contestants Saturday to win the 40th annual competition that attracted conch shell blowers from 4 to 92. 

“I spent high school playing a trumpet, in college I played a baritone and I still play in a British brass band up in Wisconsin,” Betz said. “I think I have big lungs because I play all the time. 

“I did all of the fancy things I could think of to do,” she said, after playing a segment of the “William Tell Overture.” 

The contest, a facet of the island’s Old Island Days heritage celebration, has deep roots in Key West’s colorful history. Trophies were awarded in four categories, with judging based on the quality, novelty, duration and loudness of the sounds produced. 

Native-born residents refer to themselves as conchs, conch chowder and conch fritters are traditional island dishes, and the two-story, gingerbread-bedecked wooden houses in the historic Old Town district are known as conch houses. 

——— 

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — Sometimes people can forget a birthday. But a whole town? 

That’s the case this year, when Cedar Falls turns 150. 

Despite an ample supply of history buffs, the occasion didn’t show up on anyone’s radar screen until only a few weeks ago. 

“I guess it kind of creeped up on us,” said Sid Morris, a member of the Cedar Falls Historical Society Board. “We thought we better get something together, and do it fast.” 

The board now has a committee formed and is planning a Labor Day celebration to mark the event. 

Organizers say it will be a family event with entertainment, vendors and people dressed in clothing from the mid 1800’s. The event is planned for Overman Park, named after the city’s first mayor, John Milton Overman. 

Cedar Falls was first recognized as a town in 1852. 

——— 

NEW BERLIN, Wis. (AP) — Garter snakes are choking the city’s plans to build a $40 million civic center. 

The city and the state Department of Natural Resources have been sparring over how to proceed since last summer, when state officials discovered garter snakes in an area where a road would be built to the center. The state classifies the species as threatened. 

The state wants the city to alter the road plan to save the snake habitat, but New Berlin officials say the road extension is critical for developers to solidify deals with potential tenants. 

After a meeting Friday, New Berlin Mayor Ted Wysocki agreed to submit a list of the city’s objections and offered a plan to move the snakes about 600 yards to the Deer Creek Preserve. 

“I just can’t believe there isn’t some element of common sense here,” Wysocki said. “We would dedicate our work force and find every snake that’s out there, seriously.” 

Gloria McCutcheon, the southeastern district chief of the Department of Natural Resources said her agency didn’t discover the snakes until eight months after the city filed its road extension application. 

“It may not have been everyone’s first solution, but it was a compromise,” she said. 


Body found in lake at Golden Gate Park

The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Police pulled a body out of a lake at Golden Gate Park on Monday. 

The body was discovered in Stow Lake, a popular destination for picnickers and boaters at the 1,000-acre park. 

Police and city medical examiner’s office had no details on how long the body was in the water or whether it was a man or a woman. 

The coroner’s office planned to conduct an examination Tuesday to try to identify the body and cause of death, according to Tim Hellman of the medical examiner’s office. 


Crime up 5.8 percent in most populous areas

The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Crime in California’s most populous cities and counties rose 5.8 percent in 2001, and homicides rose more than 9 percent, according to preliminary state figures released Monday. 

Property crimes rose 8.2 percent, propelling much of the increase, according to the report released by Attorney General Bill Lockyer. Motor vehicle thefts were up 11.9 percent and burglaries rose 4.9 percent. 

Despite the homicide rate, violent crime overall was up just 1.7 percent. The most common violent crime, aggravated assault, was down less than a percentage point, while robberies rose 7.2 percent and rapes were unchanged. 

Lockyer said that while crime has fallen sharply in California over the last decade, “it is never good news when there is a year-to-year increase.” He called for more crime-prevention programs, continued support for law enforcement and more work to get guns out of criminals’ hands. 

The report lists the number of major crimes in 75 cities and unincorporated county areas with populations of 100,000 or more. Together they account for about 65 percent of California’s crime. 

Crimes, as measured by the California Crime Index, saw the most dramatic rises in Daly City and San Diego County, at 22.6 percent and 21.1 percent, respectively. Increases greater than 15 percent also were posted in Berkeley, Downey, Fresno, Norwalk and Sacramento. 

Violent crime in the Orange County city of Costa Mesa rose 41.8 percent, largely because the number of robberies more than doubled. But unincorporated areas of Orange County recorded 15.4 percent fewer crimes last year. 

There were declines of more than 5 percent in Glendale, Pasadena, Santa Clara, Thousand Oaks, Ventura and the counties of Alameda, Sacramento, Santa Barbara, Stanislaus and Tulare. 

Crime in unincorporated Los Angeles County fell 5.4 percent — including a 14.9 percent drop in violent crime — even as the city of Los Angeles saw a 5.2 percent increase. 

“It’s very difficult to find any kind of trend,” said Lockyer spokeswoman Hallye Jordan.


Cardinal Mahony defends handling of child abuse, offers apology

By Robert Jablon The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

LONG BEACH — Cardinal Roger Mahony on Monday defended his handling of alleged child abuse by priests, while calling on Catholic clergy to renew their vows of celibacy. 

As head of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, Mahony said he accepts full responsibility for the abuses. He offered “my sincere apologies” to the victims. 

“This year the sins of bishops and priests are exposed and trumpeted for all to see,” Mahony said. 

The actions of a few priests, he said, had tarnished the reputation of all, adding that the church would need “an incredible purification.” 

Mahony was the target of protesters in Camarillo on Sunday who urged him to release the names of priests he has dismissed for alleged sex abuse. 

While the cardinal has acknowledged that a few priests have been removed for harming children, he has refused to confirm published reports that as many as 12 were banished from the Los Angeles Archdiocese for sexually abusing minors. 

The archdiocese’s policy, Mahony said Monday, has been to reveal the names of priests who have been removed for sexual misconduct directly to their parishioners when new cases involving them develop. 

But he said an advisory board on clergy sexual abuse has recommended not releasing the names of those involved in cases that are years old because it could cause further pain or harm to the victims. 

At a news conference following the Mass, Mahony said he knows of only two local cases involving alleged priest abuse that are actively under investigation. 

He said one involved the Rev. Dominic Savino, 63, who was fired last week as president of Crespi Carmelite High School in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley after reports surfaced that he allegedly molested boys in the 1970s. The allegations are being investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department. 

The other involves a priest under investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Mahony said, adding he doesn’t know the priest’s identity or which parish he was assigned to. 

The Los Angeles Archdiocese is the nation’s largest. Representing 5 million Roman Catholic followers, it encompasses 284 parishes in Santa Barbara, Ventura and Los Angeles counties. 

Mahony made his remarks at Our Lady of Refuge Church in Long Beach, where about 300 priests gathered for the annual Chrism Mass held to bless the sacramental oils used during services and to renew the commitment of priests and other clergy to their calling. 

This year the service also provided an opportunity to seek forgiveness from those abused and “to help the church become more open, honest and trustworthy,” Mahony said. 

He asked a ritual series of questions, including one addressed to celebate priests: “Are you resolved to continue to love God and his people in chaste celibacy?” 

“I am,” they responded. 

After the Mass, Mahony told reporters he does not believe there is a relationship between celibacy vows taken by priests and the abuse of children. 

“I personally don’t think there’s any connection between child abuse and celibacy,” he said. “You’ve got to remember, 90 to 95 percent of the child abuse in our country happens in homes and families.” 


Gasoline prices jump a record 14 cents over two weeks

The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

CAMARILLO — Gas prices surged a record 14 cents over the past two weeks as factors combined to increase demand and lower supply, according to an industry analyst. 

Friday’s weighted price per gallon for all grades and taxes was nearly $1.38, up 14.36 cents per gallon from March 8, according to the Lundberg Survey of 8,000 gas stations nationwide. 

It was the largest two-week cents-per-gallon increase since the survey began a half-century ago, analyst Trilby Lundberg said Sunday. The next-largest was 12.69 cents in April 2001. 

Various factors caused the increase, Lundberg said. 

Crude oil prices have continued to rise with an agreement by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to maintain production cuts through June. U.S. oil inventories are down as refineries perform maintenance for a seasonal rise in demand that is already beginning. 

Refineries serving many urban areas also have to reduce the vapor pressure of their fuel every March to meet emissions requirements, she said. 

Economic recovery in the United States and abroad is increasing demand, as have gas prices that dipped sharply in the months after Sept. 11, she said. 

Prices remain well below the $1.56 per gallon motorists were paying Sept. 9, and are about 9 cents lower than a year ago, Lundberg said. 

The national weighted average price of gasoline, including taxes, at self-serve pumps Friday was about $1.35 per gallon for regular, $1.44 for mid-grade and $1.53 for premium. 


Existing homes sales hit record in February

By Simon Avery The Associated Press
Tuesday March 26, 2002

LOS ANGELES — The number of previously owned homes sold in California hit an all-time high in February, jumping 25.5 percent from a year earlier and lifting prices by a robust 19.8 percent. 

Concern about rising interest rates and ongoing tight supply drove the median price of an existing, single-family home up to $289,550 during February, from $241,690 last year, the California Association of Realtors reported Monday. 

The unprecedented strength of the housing market has kept the state out of a serious recession, but longer term the effects could stymie economic growth, said Leslie Appleton-Young, chief economist at CAR. 

“Three to four years from now, it’s going to be difficult for the economy to continue to grow because of the lack of housing supply. I consider it a warning sign today,” she said. 

Existing home sales reached a record 610,380 in February at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate. That represented a 4.5 percent increase from January. But as demand grew, the number of homes listed for sale declined 14 percent from a year earlier, Appleton-Young said. 

Some buyers have been spurred into action by three straight weeks of interest rate hikes. The average interest rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages reached 7.14 percent last week, up from 7.08 percent the previous week, according to the giant mortgage investment firm Freddie Mac. 

Many economists are forecasting that 30-year rates will go as high as 7.5 percent by the end of the year. 

High prices and short supply are causing some aspiring home buyers to consider new ways to gain access to the market. 

In San Francisco, renters have championed a proposal now before the Board of Supervisors that would ease the rules for tenants to buy their units from landlords. 

Joe Capko, one of the lead advocates, said the law would dramatically increase home ownership in the city by making units available at prices significantly below market rates for condominiums. Current rules severely limit the number of apartments that can be converted into condos, which pushes up prices. 

For many would-be buyers, the prospect of getting into the housing market can mean huge financial savings down the road. 

Capko, a 38 year-old market researcher, said he and his family have spent $150,000 in rent over the last 10 years. But if he can buy his two-bedroom flat from his landlord for $230,000, he will boost his net worth by $1,800 a month through tax savings and property appreciation. 

Median home prices increased in most parts of the state in February. Of 307 California cities and communities, 227 had higher prices than a year ago, CAR reported. 

Areas seeing some of the biggest median price gains included La Verne (42.9 percent), San Gabriel (42.6 percent) and South Pasadena (41.8 percent). One of the largest price decreases occurred in Silicon Valley, which is still reeling from the technology bust. Prices dipped 5.4 percent in Santa Clara County, the region’s core. 


Opinion

Editorials

England’s Queen mother Elizabeth dies

Staff
Monday April 01, 2002

LONDON — The Queen Mother Elizabeth, a symbol of courage and dignity during a tumultuous century of war, social upheaval and royal scandal, died in her sleep Saturday died at Royal Lodge, Windsor, outside London. She was 101 years old. 

She was best known to younger generations as the mother of Queen Elizabeth II and grandmother of Prince Charles. But those who were young when German bombs rained down on London in 1940 remembered her as the queen who endured the blitz with them and visited their shattered homes. The queen mother might have been expected to retire from public life when her husband, King George VI, died in 1952. 

But after their eldest daughter’s succession to the throne, she took a new title, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, and a full load of royal duties. She carried them into her 90s, and delighted in meeting people from all walks of life. 


News of the Weird

Staff
Saturday March 30, 2002

Who has the most horses? 

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. — It appears Lexington has some competition for the title “Horse Capital of the World,” even though it has spent about $8,000 to post 40 signs proclaiming itself as such. 

A horse-breeding community in central Florida said the name is legally theirs. The Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association says it obtained a trademark on that title for Ocala and Marion County, Fla., and would mount a court challenge to stop others from using it, according to the organization’s vice president, Richard Hancock. 

“No one else can use that term. It belongs to the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders,” said Maria Hernandez, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in Washington. 

Hancock said he applied for the trademark three years ago after hearing that Lexington had proposed adopting the phrase and getting a trademark on it. It was granted in June. 

“We beat them to the punch,” Hancock said. 

Kentucky produces nearly 30 percent of all U.S. thoroughbreds and has dozens of top stallions, including Storm Cat, one of the most valuable with a stud fee of $500,000. 

 

 

Quite a miscount 

 

HONOLULU — Auditors looking at the city’s finances recently found that two sewer valve repair kits valued at $290 each were mistakenly counted nearly 10,000 times each over the past three years. 

The discrepancy caused the sewer fund’s inventory balance to be inflated by about $5.8 million. 

City officials said an antiquated inventory system was to blame for counting 19,998 kits instead of two, and a new accounting system is being installed. 

Auditors had to go through some 1,800 sheets of entries to find the problem, said Tim Steinberger, city director of environmental services. 

“We should not run into this problem again,” he said. 

PriceWaterhouseCoopers discovered the error during the annual audit for the city’s federal financial assistance programs. 

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A public library isn’t trampling on a patron’s constitutional rights by requiring him to wear shoes inside the building, a judge has ruled. 

The judge threw out Robert Neinast’s freedom of expression lawsuit Wednesday, and agreed with the library that the barefoot ban protects patrons from exposure to broken glass, blood and other bodily fluids that have been found on its floors. 

“We think the rules are reasonable and are for the good of all customers,” said library Director Larry Black. 

Neinast, who had been asked to leave the downtown library for being barefoot several times from 1997 to 2001, said he sued the Columbus Metropolitan Library for blocking his healthy lifestyle and First Amendment rights. 

“If any bureaucrat can make a rule regarding health and safety, state parks could make everyone wear sunscreen,” Neinast said. 

The software writer, who represented himself in the case, said he did not know if he would appeal. 

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SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A man suspected of robbing a bank gave himself away when he tipped a waiter $100 in order to get a seat away from the window. 

Chris Ronemus was thrilled to receive the large gratuity on a slow day at DaVinci Ristorante, but he wasn’t allowed to keep the money. 

Scott Michael Farrow, a 33-year-old unemployed painter from California, allegedly threatened a Wells Fargo teller and fled with an undisclosed amount of money Wednesday. 

Police canvassing the neighborhood entered the restaurant and asked if anyone had seen someone matching suspect’s description. An employee pointed out a man at a table inside, and mentioned the $100 tip. 


Police probing alleged child abuse by priests

The Associated Press
Friday March 29, 2002

 

 

LOS ANGELES — The Police Department, investigating allegations that priests sexually abused children, has asked the Los Angeles Archdiocese to identify the suspected clergymen and their victims. 

Police Chief Bernard Parks requested the information in a letter to Cardinal Roger Mahony, who heads the Catholic archdiocese, the nation’s largest. The letter cited a recent Los Angeles Times report that as many as a dozen priests have been dismissed by the archdiocese “due to allegations that they sexually abused minors.” 

“The LAPD is conducting a criminal investigation into these child abuse allegations,” Parks said in his letter, dated Monday. 

Mahony has said several priests recently were dismissed, some for abuses that occurred decades ago. He has refused to confirm the Times’ figure or reveal their names. 

Parks’ letter asked the archdiocese to provide “the names of the dismissed priests” and of victims who reported child abuse allegations to the archdiocese, along with any reports that the archdiocese made to police investigators. 

“Recently dismissed priests who were in the jurisdiction of the Los Angeles Police Department have been duly reported,” Mahony said in a Thursday reply to Parks. “They were prosecuted and served probation — many years ago. These cases are a matter of public record and known to your detectives. 

“You may be assured of our full and continuing cooperation in the future,” Mahony added. 

The cardinal said state law requires individual priests and others working for the archdiocese to report “reasonable suspicion of child neglect or abuse” to local police or child protective agencies. 

“We are confident that each individual has carried out his or her responsibility,” he said. 

However, individuals making such reports are ensured confidentiality by the law and are not legally required to share them with the archdiocese. The archdiocese has a policy that asks individuals to report suspected abuse by priests to a supervisor but “there are undoubtedly reports of which we have no knowledge,” Mahony wrote. 

In addition, Mahony said the archdiocese includes not only Los Angeles County but Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, and reports of suspected abuse may have gone to other police agencies in those jurisdictions. 

On a related matter, the Orange County Diocese said Thursday it has removed all priests known to have molested children. 

A five-member panel reviewed clergy personnel files under a new “zero tolerance” policy, Bishop Tod D. Brown said. 

The Rev. Michael Pecharich, 56, was forced to resign earlier this month as head of a parish in Orange County’s Rancho Santa Margarita after confessing that he molested a boy 19 years ago. His case had been known to church officials since 1996. 

Last August, the Los Angeles Archdiocese and the Orange County Diocese settled a $5.2-million case alleging that Monsignor Michael Harris molested a 17-year-old boy in 1991 in Rancho Santa Margarita. Harris denied the allegation but agreed to leave the priesthood. 


Milton Berle dies after long illness

By Bob Thomas The Associated Press
Thursday March 28, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Milton Berle, the acerbic, cigar-smoking vaudevillian who eagerly embraced a new medium and became “Mr. Television” in the dawn of the video age, died Wednesday, a spokesman said. He was 93. 

Berle died at 2:45 p.m. at his home after a lengthy illness, publicist Warren Cowan said. His wife, Lorna, and several family members were at his side. 

Berle had been under hospice care for the past few weeks. He had been diagnosed with colon cancer last year. 

“He was responsible for the television set in your home today,” Cowan said. “He put television on the map.” 

“Uncle Miltie” was the king of Tuesday nights, and store owners put up signs: “Closed tonight to watch Milton Berle.” The program’s popularity spurred sales of television sets and helped make the new technology a medium for the masses. 

At 8 p.m., four Texaco service attendants sang the “Texaco Star Theater” theme, and then came Berle, dressed for laughs: a caveman introduced as “the man with jokes from the Stone Age”; a man in a barrel “who had just paid his taxes.” 

If the audience thought he looked funny in a dress, Berle was happy to oblige, and skits in drag became a trademark. 

He was called the “Thief of Badgags” and joked about stealing quips — “I laughed so hard I nearly dropped my pencil,” he said of a rival comedian. He stopped at nothing for a laugh. 

“Good evening, ladies and germs,” Berle would say to his audience. 

“I mean ladies and gentlemen. I call you ladies and gentlemen, but you know what you really are.” 

He admitted his humor wasn’t gentle: “I guess you’d call my style flippancy, aggressiveness ... a put-downer.” 

In his debut season in 1948, Berle’s show was watched on four out of every five sets in the nation, and he was the new medium’s highest-paid funnyman. 

But the magic faded later in the ’50s, and in recent years, Berle and his outsize cigars played fairs, night clubs, college campuses and the private Friars clubs in Beverly Hills and New York. 

In 1983, he was among the first seven inductees into the TV Hall of Fame of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. 

Born Mendel Berlinger in New York’s Harlem on July 12, 1908, Berle remembered his mother bouncing him on her knee and telling him, “Make me laugh.” 

His mother, Sandra, was a thwarted entertainer; his father Moses, Berle recalled, was a “charming, rather helpless man who suffered from rheumatism and could never keep a job. ... He always dreamed of the big chance around the corner, but it never came.” 

Berle’s first chance came at age 5, when he won a vaudeville contest by imitating Charlie Chaplin. 

Soon he was doing child leads in films with Mary Pickford and Mabel Normand, and was the kid rescued from the railroad tracks in the nick of time in the Pearl White movies. 

He appeared with Chaplin and Marie Dressler in the movie, “Tillie’s Punctured Romance,” and with Miss Pickford in “Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.” 

His Broadway debut came in 1920 in “The Floradora Girl.” 

He attended New York’s Professional Children’s School, and as a teen-ager toured the vaudeville circuit as a stand-up comic, taking his jokes from College Humor and Captain Billy’s Whiz Bang. 

“I studied stars like Eddie Cantor, Al Jolson, Lou Holtz and others,” Berle said in a 1984 interview. “I have eight or 10 press books of bad notices from those years, but it was a good education in learning what not to do.” 

In 1936 Berle was a headliner with the Ziegfeld Follies. He played a long run with Earl Carroll’s Vanities and began bringing his brand of humor to radio with guest spots on humor shows. He also appeared in several minor film comedies, such as “New Faces of 1937” and “Always Leave Them Laughing” (based on his autobiography). But he never really made it on the big screen. 

Then came 1948 and the advent of television. 

Berle was signed as host of the first show of a variety series — the “Texaco Star Theater.” He was supposed to alternate with several other hosts, including Henny Youngman and Morey Amsterdam, but Berle drew so much fan mail that NBC soon gave him the spot permanently. 

Berle’s hour-long “Texaco Star Theater” began June 8, 1948, and was renamed “The Milton Berle Show” before it ended in June 1956. 

He won an Emmy for the program, which was truly his own. 

“Our star, besides performing, conducted the orchestra, made countless little changes, like revamping the dances, redesigning the costumes, rewriting and improvising one-liners and exit cues,” recalled Goodman Ace, one of Berle’s writers. “Dress rehearsals were classic exercises in wild frenzy. He wore a traffic cop’s whistle around his neck and blew the show to so many stops that a rehearsal often lasted from noon until 10 minutes before air time.” 

Berle’s sister Rosalind designed many of the costumes, and his mother was a fixture in the studio audience. 

“When I started out with the Texaco series in 1948, television was brand new, and I knew just as much about it as anybody else,” Berle once said. “I was in charge of everything because I wanted to be. Today there are experts for all phases of the medium.... We didn’t have any experts in 1948.” 

In 1951, NBC signed him to an unprecedented contract calling for $100,000 a year for 30 years — whether Berle worked or not. The network agreed in 1965 to let him work elsewhere, and Berle accepted a pay cut to $60,000 a year. 

In 1960, Berle lasted six months in “Jackpot Bowling Starring Milton Berle,” sandwiching comedy bits between play-by-play of a bowling match. He jumped to ABC in 1966 with a new variety show which died after a few months. 

He made more movies in the 1960s, notably “It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World” in 1963. Other films included “The Oscar,” “The Happening,” “Who’s Minding the Mint?,” “Where Angels Go, Trouble Follows,” “For Singles Only,” “Hieronymus Merkin,” “Lepke” and “The Muppet Movie.” 

In 1984, he played himself in “Broadway Danny Rose.” 

His mother’s influence remained strong until she died in 1953 at 77. Berle married, divorced and remarried show girl Joyce Matthews, and they adoted a daughter, Vickie. Their second marriage lasted six years. 

In 1953 Berle married former publicist Ruth Cosgrove. They had an adopted son, Billie. She died on April 18, 1989. 

In later years, Berle also said he found much solace in Christian Science, and called himself a Jew and a Christian Scientist. 

In 1982 he became the national chairman of the American Longevity Association, and was president of The Friars Club. 

A pioneer in television, Berle always was ready to try something new. 

“Too many people simply give up too easily,” he once said. “You have to keep the desire to forge ahead, and you have to be able to take the bruises of unsuccess. Success is just one long street fight.” 


News of the Weird

Staff
Wednesday March 27, 2002

Some major static cling at Target 

 

EUGENE, Ore. — A new Target store is shocking dozens of customers — and not with their prices. 

Store manager Tim Snow said the new carpeting is generating static electricity that seems to be zapping customers who push the metal-framed, metal-handled carts. 

The store has ordered $1,500 worth of anti-shock “kits” in an attempt to halt what has become an epidemic of static electricity since the store opened two weeks ago. 

“Every time we come here I get shocked,” shopper Christy Hogan said Monday. “I was touching a lotion dispenser with one hand, and I was hanging onto the cart with the other hand. The shock went through one hand and went out through the other. I said ‘Damn,’ and my daughter said, ‘Mom!”’ 

As a solution, the retailer will outfit its 400 carts with a small metal chain or bar to “drain off” the static instead of allowing it to discharge through people. 

 

 

It’s OK to garden in the buff 

 

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania’s indecent exposure law apparently doesn’t cover nude gardeners. 

A three-judge panel of the state Superior Court has thrown out a central Pennsylvania man’s indecent exposure conviction stemming from his penchant for doing yard work in the buff. 

Charles Stitzer, 63, was charged with indecent exposure and disorderly conduct in September 2000 for wearing only shoes and a watch while gardening in his back yard in Pleasant Gap on a summer night. 

Stitzer, a retired mechanical draftsman, said he often shed clothes to do yard work and beat the summer heat in the town of 1,700 about eight miles north of State College. 

A neighbor, Pam Watkins, and her 15-year-old daughter reported him to police when they saw him gardening without clothes. Stitzer said he wanted to persuade Watkins to dim her outdoor floodlights that shone on his property. 

Stitzer was sentenced to two years of probation on the charges. 

The Superior Court last week ruled that Stitzer’s situation wasn’t covered by the state’s indecent exposure law because his backyard is private and his offended neighbor lived too far away, 65 yards. 

 

 

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MINDEN, La. (AP) — Birthdays will be easy to remember in Steven Lowery’s family. 

Lowery and his twin sister Stacy Lowery Cox were born Feb. 17. So were their children, three years apart. 

“We plan to have a big birthday party for the kids, and my brother and I will continue to have a birthday dinner together like we always have,” Cox said. 

Both babies originally had due dates of Feb. 24 — Paige Lowery in 1999, Connor Lowery Cox this year. 

When Paige was born, Cox recalls, “everyone was so excited about my niece being born on his birthday, everyone told him happy birthday, but forgot all about me.” 

Cox said that when her doctor told her that her first baby was due Feb. 24, she joked to her brother that she’d give birth on their birthday “so I could get my revenge on him.” 

The joke turned real. 

“I think that this is so special,” Cox said. 

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DENVER (AP) — Forget gold and silver. Sen. Ken Chlouber wants to designate rhodochrosite as the state mineral. 

Chlouber, who represents Leadville, said the blood-red mineral from his district is unique. Besides, it was suggested by his constituents at a local high school. 

The Senate gave initial approval Monday to his bill. 

Sen. Ron Tupa, of Boulder, tried unsuccessfully to add amendments to House Bill 1346 to substitute gold or silver. Chlouber said other states, including California and Nevada, already staked their claim on those minerals. 

Sen. Andy McElhany said the bluish mineral amazonite from Pikes Peak would be far a better choice. 

“Why would we want something that’s communist red?” he asked. 

Other than in the Eastern European country of Romania, rhodochrosite is found mostly in Butte, Mont., and Leadville. The mineral consists essentially of manganese carbonate. 


Police continue investigating south Berkeley shooting

Staff
Tuesday March 26, 2002

Police are still investigating a Saturday night shooting that occurred at the intersection of Russell and McGee streets. 

Twenty-five-year-old Raymond Smith was shot in the head and remained in critical condition at Highland Hospital Monday. 

The Berkeley Police Department is looking for a suspect, said spokesperson Lt. Cynthia Harris, described as an African-American male in his 20s or 30s, wearing a dark-colored knit cap. 

Harris said the police received a call at 11:30 p.m. saying there was a fight in progress. While police were on the way to the South Berkeley location, a citizen reported that one man had been shot.  

Police arrived on the scene to find a man lying on the street who appeared to have been shot once in the head. 

BPD Sgt. Nonoguchi and Detective Badour are looking into the case.


Columns

Entertainment workers to seek duties on films made in Canada

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

WASHINGTON — A group representing entertainment industry workers said it will file a complaint with the federal government seeking duties on Canadian-made productions sent to the United States for editing or distribution. 

The Film and Television Action Committee alleges that Canada unfairly subsidizes TV and film productions through wage-based incentives that can reduce labor expenses by 35 percent. 

The committee, which says it represents 200,000 workers, has been gathering facts and figures about the entertainment industry and signatures from Hollywood workers for the complaint, chairman Brent Swift said. 

The complaint is being prepared for submission to the Commerce Department and U.S. International Trade Commission by William Fennell, a Washington-based lawyer whose firm specializes in trade cases. 

FTAC, which includes production crews, carpenters and other workers, withdrew an initial complaint earlier this year, saying it was improperly drafted. 

“The substance has not changed,” Fennell said. “The issue is the subsidized labor in Canada acting as a draw.” 

Nearly 26 percent of theatrical movies shot in North America and released in 2000 were filmed in Canada, up from 13 percent in 1999, according to a report prepared last year by the Center for Entertainment Industry Data and Research. 

Filming in other countries cost the U.S. economy $2.8 billion in 1998, according to a report prepared for the Screen Actors Guild and the Directors Guild of America in 1999. 

That figure jumped to $10.3 billion when money that would have been spent at restaurants, hotels and other businesses, and tax revenue that would have been generated, were included, the report said. 

The Motion Picture Association of America, the Directors Guild, International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and other unions oppose duties on Canadian-made productions. 

They would rather see the U.S. and state governments match the Canadian tax breaks. California Gov. Gray Davis and members of Congress have proposed such incentives. 

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On the Net: 

Screen Actors Guild: http://www.sag.org 

Film and Television Action Committee: http://www.ftac.net 


PG&E wins approval to repay some creditors

The Associated Press
Saturday March 30, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — PG&E Corp. won approval to repay $790 million to a group of Pacific Gas and Electric creditors, overcoming objections that the deal is designed to sway an upcoming vote on how the utility will emerge from bankruptcy. 

In a Wednesday ruling, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Dennis Montali approved payments to 18 fund managers after PG&E dropped a condition that would have required the creditors to vote in favor of the San Francisco-based company’s reorganization plan. 

PG&E is trying to convince creditors that its plan is preferable to an alternative drawn up by the state Public Utilities Commission. 

U.S. Bankruptcy Trustee Linda Stanley said the repayments could still influence the vote because the affected creditors might fear they won’t get the money already promised them if the PUC plan prevails. Stanley tried to convince Montali that PG&E repayments are highly unusual and unwarranted. 

Montali initially rejected the repayment plan, but reversed course after PG&E agreed to allow creditors to vote for the PUC plan. 

In another development, Pacific Gas and Electric said it won’t interfere with the California’s plans to issue $12.5 billion in bonds to recover government money spent buying electricity on behalf of PG&E and other troubled utilities. 

It had been feared PG&E would file a lawsuit seeking to block the state from charging the utility’s customers for the power, a move that would have further delayed California’s planned bond sale. Gordon Smith, Pacific Gas and Electric’s president, said the utility won’t sue, despite its misgivings, in a letter to state Treasurer Phil Angelides. 

California is trying to recoup an electricity bill of more than $6 billion. Although he hailed PG&E’s commitment as a significant development, Angelides said it’s unlikely California will sell the bonds before July 1, the start of the state’s fiscal year. 

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On The Net: 

http://www.pgecorp.com