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DA may drop charges against UC protesters

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Tuesday June 04, 2002

The Alameda County District Attorney has offered to drop charges against the 78 pro-Palestinian activists who occupied UC Berkeley’s Wheeler Hall April 9, the Planet has learned. 

“I think it’s a real vindication,” said Linda Sherif, a member of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and lawyer for the protesters. “It was a peaceful political demonstration and charges shouldn’t have been filed in the first place.” 

“It just seemed fair given what was involved and their records and the message they were trying to send,” said, Alameda County Deputy District Attorney Stuart Hing, about the offer. 

The defendants could accept the offer as early as Friday, during a court appearance at the Oakland branch of the Alameda County Superior Court. 

All 78 defendants currently face charges of obstructing or intimidating an employee of a public agency.  

Seven defendants also face charges of resisting arrest and 23 year-old student Roberto Hernandez is accused of misdemeanor assault and battery for allegedly biting a UC Berkeley police officer. 

The District Attorney has offered to drop all charges and issue an official “factual finding of innocence” for each defendant, requiring that all arrest records are sealed. 

“I’m pleased with the offer that’s been made,” said defendants’ attorney Seth Chazin. 

Chazin said lawyers have not yet contacted all the activists to confirm their acceptance of the District Attorney’s offer. But Hoang Phan, a leader of Students for Justice in Palestine, the campus group that spearheaded the April 9 takeover, said the defendants will likely agree to the proposal. 

If they accept the offer, most defendants will have to pay court fees of $25 or $50, with Hernandez shelling out $750. Chazin said the fees are simply administrative payments. But Hing said the fees qualify as fines. 

Activists took over Wheeler Hall April 9 after a full day of protest, calling on the University of California to divest from Israel. Protesters chanted slogans for hours before UC Berkeley police ordered them to leave. When the activists refused to disperse, campus police arrested them one-by-one, dragging some of them away. 

After arraignment at the Berkeley branch of the Superior Court April 30, Judge Carol Brosnahan transferred the case to Oakland. The District Attorney’s Oakland office offered to drop the charges after a May 29 court date, according to Sherif. 

“It’s a really big legal victory,” said Phan, the SJP leader. “It’s also a really big political victory.” 

But Phan noted that the 41 students involved in the occupation still face possible disciplinary action, including suspension, from the university. 

“We’ve won the criminal charges, but the student conduct charges we take very seriously,” he said, noting that SJP will fight any disciplinary action. 

UC Berkeley spokeswoman Janet Gilmore said the university will send letters to the students this week notifying them of the charges they will face. She said it will then be up to the students to settle the matter in an informal meeting with staff or go to a hearing. 

Gilmore declined to comment on the offer to drop criminal charges until receiving direct confirmation of that offer from the District Attorney. 

City Councilmember Kriss Worthington, who has been a vocal critic of the university and supporter of the students, said he was not surprised by the District Attorney’s offer. 

“I’ve been expecting it, because when you look at the police report, it is virtually unimaginable that they could be convicted,” said Worthington. “Any fair-minded District Attorney would probably come to the conclusion it’s not worth the enormous expense and staff time (to prosecute).”

News of the Weird

The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

Pretty in plastic 

LEE, Maine – With a dozen rolls of duct tape and more than 20 hours of creative hard work, Spencer Stacey and Samantha Braziller were outfitted for the Lee Academy senior prom. 

The pair’s home-tailored formal wear for the dance was made entirely from the heavy-duty tape often found in toolboxes and utility drawers. 

Stacey, a senior, had a three-piece black tuxedo with tails and a top hat, all trimmed in shiny silver. Every detail, down to the silver bow tie and red rose boutonniere, was made of duct tape. 

Braziller, a junior, chose a long, white gown with swirling lines of silvery, sequinlike details that could pass for satin from a distance. 

They estimate the cost at $75. 

Braziller figures her duct tape dress should really come in handy if it rains at the dance. 

“Everyone will be complaining and I can wipe the water right off,” she said. 


Show and tell 

MODESTO – A man landed in jail after his grandchildren showed up at school with $1,100 in counterfeit bills their grandfather had allegedly made. 

School officials called police after a 7-year-old girl showed a handful of $100 bills to classmates, Stanislaus County sheriff’s spokesman Tom Letras said. 

The second grader and her 5-year-old brother told police they took only a few $100 bills from the pile stored in grandpa’s van. 

Police said they found Jose Luis Landeras on Tuesday stuffing moneymaking material down his pants. 

Landeras, 42, was arrested on suspicion of making counterfeit money and spending it over the past seven months. Police said they confiscated $2,000 in phony bills. 

The boy originally didn’t want to talk to police because he thought he and his sister were in trouble for stealing. Police coaxed him into telling them about the money when they asked what games he and his grandfather liked to play. 

The boy said his favorite game was Frogger. And his grandpa’s? The “moneymaking game.” 



RICHMOND, British Columbia – A Vancouver-area man had his early morning speed skating training session interrupted by a very cold naked man. 

The Richmond man said his 2 a.m. speed skating session at the Richmond Ice Centre was interrupted when he noticed a man in the buff approaching him on the ice, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. 

The nameless nude made an unsuccessful attempt to tackle the speed skater before fleeing the scene. 

The skater was “obviously stunned, but was able to deal with the situation,” said RCMP spokesman Constable Peter Thiessen. Police did not catch the would-be attacker.

Bay area must continue to explore options, build public policy for affordable housing

Dion Aroner District 14 Assemblywoman
Tuesday June 04, 2002

To the Editor: 

Affordable Housing Week is a chance to highlight the significant shortage of affordable housing in the Bay Area as well as celebrate the significant contributions of affordable housing to the lives of those who depend on it. Throughout my years as an assemblywoman, I have seen this area's affordable housing crisis worsen. The number of housing units available to families with low to moderate incomes is negligible compared to the rising number of those in need. 

We must make significant progress to reduce the disparity between those who can and cannot afford housing. Our state is second to last in the nation in homeownership rates. A minimum-wage earner must work over 100 hours a week to be able to afford a one-bedroom apartment in the Bay Area. California has lost over 20,000 affordable housing units over the past five years, and there are over 360,000 homeless in California with the most rapidly growing segments of this population being seniors and families with children. 

However, California has made significant strides in providing more affordable housing. We are exploring new and creative incentives to encourage developers to construct affordable housing, government is putting more funds towards constructing affordable housing and we are seeing better public policy around creating more affordable housing for California's families. I have supported the efforts of my colleagues in the State Legislature to ease the growing disparity between those who have housing and those who do not. Most notably, Senator John Burton's (D-San Francisco) $2.1 billion housing bond, if passed this November, will go far in addressing the affordable housing needs of this state. I fought to include close to $190 million for supportive housing, housing with built-in medical and social services assistance, and $15 million to fund housing for low-income UC and CSU students and staff. Affordable housing trusts, which already exist in a number of cities and counties throughout the state, are another example of what we can do to spur the construction of affordable housing units. These trusts are pools of money from various sources set aside for affordable housing. Affordable housing trusts must continue to be developed and supported.  

On May 29th, the State Assembly adopted my ACR 209, a resolution calling upon Californians to participate in Affordable Housing Week activities and work towards diminishing our state's housing gap. Affordable Housing Week is being celebrated between June 1st and June 9th and will be marked by grand openings of affordable housing developments, forums on increasing affordable housing, and rallies throughout the state. This is a chance for people to come together in observance of the progress made around affordable housing as well connect more families with affordable housing, particularly the most vulnerable members of our community - low-income families, seniors and people with disabilities.  

As California is faced with one of the most ominous budgets in recent history, it is incumbent upon all of us to come up with solutions with fewer resources, yet with greater resolve than ever before. Your participation in Affordable Housing Week is critical. It is an opportunity for all of us to be advocates, it is a call to leadership, a challenge that must be met on behalf of those who struggle daily to meet a need which most of us take for granted. 

Your efforts will be felt by thousands of families in your community. Your work can create rooftops!

Out & About

Tuesday June 04, 2002

Thursday, June 6


Freedom From Tobacco: 

A quit smoking class 

5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursdays,  

June 6 to July 18 

South Berkeley Senior Center 

2939 Ellis Street,  




Big Brother is Watching 

6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 

The Independent Institute 

100 Swan Way, Oakland 

RSVP 632-1366 

Speaker James Bamford, author of “Body of Secrets, anatomy of Ultra-Secret National Security Agency.” 

Cost: $35 includes the book, $14 lecture only, $10 members. 


Friday, June 7


Fundraiser for  

Common Ground  

7 p.m. 

St. Joseph The Worker School 

On the corner of Addison, b/w California and McGee 

Featuring Julia Butterfly Hill, a renowned and inspirational environmental activist  

$7 students, $12 non-students else. 



Saturday, June 8


Live Oak Park Fair 

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. June 8 & 9. 

Live Oak Park 

Shattuck & Berryman 


Original fine crafts & art, tasty food, live entertainment including: Splash Circus, The Prescott Clowns, Jean-Paul Valjean (circus performance), Fat Chance Bellydance, Urban Harmony, Johnny Casino (children's lounge lizard), Zappo the Magician, with M.C. Wavy Gravy. Benefit for Camp Winnarainbow. 



Sunday, June 9


Tibetan Nyingma Institute  

Open House 

3 to 5 p.m. 

Introduction to Tibetan  

Buddhist Culture.  

6 to 7 p.m. 

Erika Rosenberg and Abbe Blum on "Creativity and  


Both at Tibetan Nyingma  


1815 Highland Place 



The 2nd Annual California Bluegrass Association MUSIC CAMP 

June 9-12 

Nevada County Fairgrounds, GRASS VALLEY, CA  


Banjo-- Pete Wreck and Avram Siegel, Fiddle-- Laurie Lewis and Jack Tuttle, Mandolin--John Reischman and Tom Rozum, Guitar-- Jim Nunally and Dix Bruce, Dobro-- Sally van Meter Bass--Trisha Gagnon, Old-time fiddle-- Bruce Molsky, Old-time, guitar-- Tom Sauber, Old-time banjo-- Evie Ladin, Autoharp-Ray Frank 

Beginner and intermediate instrumental classes; jam classes; electives including vocal harmonies, music theory, band rhythm, critical listening, clogging, and more. 



Monday, June 10


Poetry Express -  

All Open Mike Night 

7 to 9 p.m. 

Berkeley Bakery & Cafe 

1561 Solano Avenue 

A community open mike  

welcoming all artists. 



“All Grown Grown Up: Living Happily Ever with Your Adult Children” 

7 to 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Street 

848-0237 Ext. 127 

Author Roberta Maisel leads the mid-life parent through a series of thoughtful steps inherent in the process of learning how to let go. 



Saturday, June 15


Emergency Preparedness Classes in Berkeley 

9 to 11 a.m. 

997 Cedar Street 


Basic Personal Preparedness: Learn how to take care of yourself, your family and  

your home. 



Sunday, June 16


Field Trip to Remnant East Shore Habitats 

10 a.m. 

El Cerrito BART, southwest corner of parking lot (towards Albany Hill). Then carpool to various sites, returning mid-afternoon. 


(925) 372-0687, e-mail  


Visit a selection of  

critically rare habitats in and adjacent to the new East  

Shore State Park. 




6 p.m. 

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 


Lee Nichol on “Sacred  

Dimensions of Time  

and Space.” 



Monday, June 17th


“An Uncommon  

Friendship: From  

Opposite Sides of  

the Holocaust” 

Join Bernat Rosner, a Holocaust survivor as he reads  

from and discusses his  

counterpoint memoir co-authored with Fritz Tubach,  

the son of a German Army officer. 

7:30 to 8:45 p.m. 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Street 

848-0237 Ext. 127 


Next task for Lakers: 4 more wins

By John Nadel AP Sports Writer
Tuesday June 04, 2002

LOS ANGELES – This might be a tough encore for the Los Angeles Lakers. 

After winning one of the most riveting series in playoff history, they still need four wins over the New Jersey Nets to earn their third straight title and a spot in the record books for their coach. 

But if ever the NBA Finals could possibly be considered an afterthought, it’s now. 

After all, the Lakers are 9-1 favorites over the upstart Nets after beating the Sacramento Kings in a series many believe determined the championship. 

One problem could be a letdown, at least early in the best-of-seven series. The Lakers were indeed tested by the Kings in the Western Conference finals and were left with little time to gear up for the Nets. 

“Deep, deeper than we’ve ever dug before,” Derek Fisher said after his team’s 112-106 overtime victory in Game 7 at Sacramento. 

“I would say that it was grueling,” Shaquille O’Neal said. 

The Lakers, who took Monday off to rest, were to practice Tuesday in nearby El Segundo. 

Game 1 is Wednesday night at Staples Center. Game 2 also will be in Los Angeles on Friday before the series shifts to New Jersey for Games 3, 4 and, if necessary, 5. 

The Lakers are making their 21st appearance in the NBA Finals and will be shooting for their 14th championship, including five in Minneapolis before moving to Los Angeles in 1960. 

The Nets, in the playoffs for the first time since 1998, will be playing in the finals for the first time. Their 10 playoff wins this spring are one more than their total since joining the NBA in 1976. 

“They have a nice little team,” Robert Horry said. 

“They play with a lot of emotion, they play with a lot of moxie,” Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. “We felt confident that the winner of this conference would win the series and we still believe it.” 

Confidence is never a problem for the Lakers. Even when they trailed the Kings 3-2 they were upbeat — from Jackson to the end of the bench. 

The Lakers’ fans even include some Nets. 

“I was rooting for the Lakers to pull it out because I wanted to go home and play them,” said Lucious Harris, who grew up in Los Angeles and attended Long Beach State. “It’s unbelievable to be going home and playing the champions.” 

Keith Van Horn, from nearby Diamond Bar, spent his childhood rooting for the Lakers. 

“First we beat Boston in Boston, now I’m going home to play LA in the NBA Finals,” he said. “I couldn’t have scripted it better.” 

The Lakers have appeared vulnerable at times during the playoffs, but now they are playing their best basketball of the postseason. 

“We still have the heart of a champion,” forward Rick Fox said. 

One of the main reasons the Lakers beat the Kings was O’Neal’s ability to ignore the pain from his arthritic right big toe and produce dominating efforts in Games 6 and 7. 

He had 41 points and 17 rebounds Friday night in a 106-102 victory and 35 points and 13 rebounds less than 48 hours later in Game 7. 

And he made free throws: 13-of-17 and 11-of-15 in the last two games. That’s 24-of-32 and 75 percent — far above his typical output. 

“Over the last couple of years now, when I’ve needed to hit them, I’ve hit them,” he said. 

Jackson has won a record 23 straight playoff series. If he makes it 24, he will have nine championships as a coach to tie Red Auerbach’s record and 156 postseason victories, one more than leader Pat Riley. 

New Jersey’s Byron Scott, meanwhile, is in his second year as an NBA head coach — both with the Nets, who were 26-56 in his first season. 

Scott played 11 of his 14 NBA seasons with the Lakers and was a starter on three of their five championship teams in the 1980s. 

“It’s one of the greatest organizations in all of sports,” he said. “I loved being there, playing there and now going back there as a coach. 

“I love this challenge. I’m going back to LA to coach in the NBA Finals. It’s a dream come true for me.” 

South Berkeley shooting suspect at large

By Chris Nichols Daily Planet Staff
Tuesday June 04, 2002

Several gun shots were fired at the driver of a car parked on the 1500 block of Alcatraz Avenue early Sunday morning, according to the Berkeley Police Department. 

The victim was taken to Highland Hospital after the 1:30 a.m. shooting where he was treated for multiple gunshot wounds to the shoulder and has since been released. 

According to BPD public information officer Lt. Cynthia Harris, the suspect in the shooting has been identified but remains at large. Police are withholding the name until Tuesday. Three other individuals were in the car during the shooting and were not injured. 

BPD squad cars appeared on scene in the south Berkeley neighborhood approximately 30 seconds after a report of loud noises in the area. According to Harris, the car involved in the incident sped from Alcatraz Avenue to Fairview Street, two blocks north, before being stopped by police. 

More than a dozen BPD squad cars followed within minutes of the shooting along with both an ambulance and truck from Berkeley Fire Department. 

A BPD squad car was also seen speeding east on Fairview Street moments after the shooting. 

According to Lt. Harris, no indication of a motive has been released. Harris did not comment as to whether or not the victim in the shooting knew the suspect. 

The shooting follows a series of community meetings between the BPD and residents concerned about increased violence and drug activity specifically in south and west Berkeley. The BPD released details last Thursday of the arrest of 20 individuals suspected of illegal drug trafficking. 


Sunday’s shooting is the most recent in a pattern of violence in the south Berkeley area. On January 22, Oakland residents Rammar Johnson and Noel Turner, Jr., were shot in the head while sitting in their car on 64th Street. The two later died as a result of their injuries. The perpetrator in that shooting is still at large. 

Berkeley resident Dwight Leeray and 25-year old Raymond Smith also died as the result of violent crimes in south Berkeley, in unrelated incidents, in March. Two suspects are behind bars for the death of Leeray.  

According to the BPD, patrols in south Berkeley have increased as a result of the recent homicides and other violence. Officers emphasize that residents must work with the police to reduce crime.  

Officers urge community members to call the BPD with any information at 981-5900 and also provide an anonymous tip line 843-2677 (THE-COPS).

20 mph limit proposal is against the law

Max Alfert Albany
Tuesday June 04, 2002

To the Editor: 

Considering Mr. Worthington’s promotion of speed limits in Berkeley, I don’t dispute his observation that no other big city is doing this because it violates the California vehicle code (25 mph on residential streets but 15 mph near schools). But Berkeley is known for flaunting traffic laws. About 20 years ago, street barriers were installed which removed traffic from streets inhabited by “preferred” citizens, causing traffic jams and waste of fuel. Property values in the protected streets, including that of the subsequent “liberal” mayor and her husband, went up considerably. 

This scheme was clearly against provisions of the vehicle code and was instituted by an unholy alliance of the “centrist” Mayor Dean, who wanted to protect North Berkeley streets of political supporters and “liberal” City Counsel member Hancock, who wanted to close down traffic in the South campus area. The majority of citizens against this scheme had no political support. 

A popular lawsuit against the city took three years and the city lost the case in all instances, including the California Supreme Court, which ordered the barriers to be “removed forthwith.” But the city stonewalled the court decision until, three months later, a fly-by-night legal maneuver by Ms. Hancock’s husband, the venerable Tom Bates, managed to legalize the barriers ex-post-facto by promoting a slight technical change of the vehicle code in the Legislature. 

Many current Berkeley residents were not here then and they don’t know about these shenanigans that are well remembered by a refugee to Albany.

Ballet Superstar Baryshnikov Dazzles Berkeley

By Robert Hall Special to the Daily Planet
Tuesday June 04, 2002

His body looks sculpted by Praxiteles, his thick blond hair is youthfully tousled, and he commands the stage like a star. 

He’s Russian dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov, and he’s fifty-four years old.  

“Misha” seemed ageless in his appearance with the White Oak Dance Project at Zellerbach Hall last weekend – not that time hasn’t altered the golden glow of his youth to a mellower shade. His dancing isn’t as breathtaking as it once was, but it’s wiser, humbler, deeper. 

Baryshnikov is no longer showing off. He’s showing up, to tell us, with the authority of a master, what he’s learned.  

And that’s a lot. One thing he has learned is to be a thorough team player. He and Mark Morris co-founded the White Oak Project twelve years ago to showcase modern dancers and modern dance choreographers. They meant it to be a collaboration, and among the company of eight at Cal Performances, Baryshnikov displayed a winning grace in blending with his co-performers.  

It was dance, not the dancers, that mattered.  

Of course Baryshnikov had star moments; we’d be disappointed if he didn’t. The first was a bracing solo in Lucinda Childs’ “Largo.” If modern dance ranges from more “classical” modes to off-the-wall, Childs is a classicist, serving up relaxed but meticulously designed fare. An elegant exploration of space set to a lush interpretation of Corelli, “Largo” sent its protagonist on a journey of thoughtful turns and deliberately reaching arms, punctuated by stirring stillnesses as he girded himself to set out time and again.  

The work might be an emblem for Baryshnikov. In easygoing black jacket and loose Gene Kelly-ish pants, he offered exhilarating proof of undiminished grace.  

Next came Eric Hawkins classic 1961 “Early Floating,” in which a trio of men and a woman (Baryshnikov, Zane Booker, Roger Jeffrey, Emily Coates) make their moves under a colorful Calder-like stabile whose angles seem to be. 

a template for colorful abstractions. The crystalline lightness of Lucia Dlugoszeswki’s tinkly, percussive score spins wires of sound for charged calisthenics, bodhisattva poses and slo-mo rushes. “Early Floating” offers up 

relationships that are coolly self-possessed yet amusingly fresh, and if modern dance pioneer Hawkins, who died in 1994, was looking down, he was surely pleased at the homage.  

But how to describe what came next? Sarah Michelson’s “The Experts” tried so hard to be off the wall that it ended up falling flat. Performed on a giant sheet of bubble-wrap, its goofy moves were punctuated by a constant popping crackle, while a racecar kept whining overhead. The costumes were from cuckoo-land: one dancer in pedal pushers, another in butterfly wings, a third in a gauzy skirt, a fourth in a jock strap, a fifth looking like a bad-taste Bo Peep. Why? The music featured twittering birds, while the motley tribe on stage wiggled motorized hips and uttered longing cries. In one sequence their flopping arms attempted flight, but the poor things never come near getting off the ground. 

Fortunately the concluding work, Lucinda Child’s “Chacony,” got off the ground nicely, thank you. Six dancers – Miguel Anaya, Emily Coates, Jennifer Howard, Roger Jeffrey, Sonja Kostich and Rosalynde LeBlanc – held the stage for a quarter of an hour to a prickly Benjamin Britten score. They were a sextet of busily striding pedestrians who turned self-possessed into a cool transcendence as they peeled off from the crowd and turned and mingled in serene yet spirited combinations.  

At the end they left the stage to Baryshnikov, who performed a touching coda that featured tentative leaps, as if he’d lost his way. Not a chance, though. 

Last month’s Bay Area dance news may have been prima ballerina Joanna Berman’s retirement in her mid-thirties, but Baryshnikov spells out a different story. In his fifties he’s still going strong, and it’s a gift to watch him show us how dance is done.

Giants 11, Padres 3

By Bernie Wilson AP Sports Writer
Tuesday June 04, 2002

SAN DIEGO – Marvin Benard had his first three-hit game of the season, including a three-run homer, then caught nothing but grief from teammate Shawon Dunston. 

Benard got the last word, though, following the San Francisco Giants’ 11-3 rout of the punchless San Diego Padres on Monday night. 

“You’re going to sleep like Tony Gwynn tonight. Be happy, Marvin,” Dunston said, comparing Benard with the retired Padres batting star. “Go ahead, enjoy it, you’re not going to play for another 10 days.” 

Benard’s retort? 

“I am going to sleep like Tony Gwynn, like a baby. I’ve been like Shawon Dunston — tossing and turning all over the place.” 

By going 3-for-6, with his first homer of the season and two doubles, Benard raised his average from .229 to .250. Dunston is hitting .135. 

Benard, who had started just nine games previously this year, got a half-hour’s notice from manager Dusty Baker that he was starting in right field and batting leadoff in place of Reggie Sanders, who had a bruised right middle finger. 

“When you don’t play every day, and all of a sudden you get a chance to start, and you know you’re starting that game, you start thinking about things,” Benard said. “And you get yourself in trouble because you overthink. 

“When things happened like they did today, there was no time to think. There was just time to go out there and react, which we should be doing all the time anyway, but it’s easier said than done.” 

Benito Santiago also hit a three-run homer for the Giants, who had a season-high 20 hits. After losing four games in which they scored a total of just five runs, the Giants have scored 20 runs in two games. 

Santiago’s homer highlighted a six-run third inning. Tsuyoshi Shinjo homered leading off the five-run eighth, and Benard went deep three batters later. Jeff Kent added an RBI double to finish 3-for-5 with three RBIs. 

The Giants batted around in the third and eighth innings. 

Every Giants starter had at least one hit and one run scored. Starting pitcher Russ Ortiz (5-4) had two hits and scored once while holding the Padres to three runs and five hits in six innings. 

The Padres kept Barry Bonds in the ballpark, but he walked and scored in the third. Bonds, who hit his 586th homer Sunday night to tie Frank Robinson for fourth on the career list, was 2-for-3 with two walks. 

The Padres have lost five straight and 14 of 18. They were coming off a weekend sweep by Milwaukee, which has the second-worst record in the majors.

Verdict due in Earth First!

Daily Planet staff -Daily Planet staff
Tuesday June 04, 2002


A federal jury has reached verdicts on six of the seven FBI and Oakland police officers accused of framing and violating the civil rights of environmental activists Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney in the controversial 1990 car bombing, according to Earth First! officials. 

Lawyers for both parties are expected to meet with U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken to discuss jury deliberations at 8 a.m. on Tuesday in the Oakland Federal Building. 

It was not known at press time whether or not verdicts would be read following the morning’s scheduled meeting. 

Mariners held off Athletics: 4-1

By Anne M. Peterson AP Sports Writer
Tuesday June 04, 2002

OAKLAND–Freddy Garcia’s patience is being tested this season. 

“Every time I’ve been pitching it’s been a tight game,” he said. “I have to keep the game close and wait for us to score some runs.” 

Garcia kept it close Monday night, winning his third straight start as the Seattle Mariners held off the Oakland Athletics 4-1. 

Garcia (7-4) did not allow a run until the eighth inning, when John Mabry hit a solo home run with one out. The last five runs that Garcia has allowed have been solo homers. 

It was the first Oakland homer for Mabry, who came to the A’s on May 22 in the trade that sent Jeremy Giambi to Philadelphia. 

Garcia allowed the one run on five hits over 7 2-3 innings. He struck out five. 

“He’s just really good,” teammate Jeff Cirillo said. “When the weather warms up so will Freddy. I don’t think he’s pitched his best baseball.” 

Kazuhiro Sasaki pitched the ninth for his 13th save. 

The loss, in the first game of a four-game set between the AL West rivals, snapped the resurgent A’s three-game winning streak. 

A’s rookie right-hander Aaron Harang (1-1) wasn’t as sharp as he was in his major league debut May 25, when he combined with reliever Chad Bradford on a three-hit shutout against Tampa Bay. 

Harang allowed three runs on five hits over six innings. He struck out five. 

“I wish things had turned out the other way around,” Harang said. “Garcia was just on tonight. You can’t do anything about that.” 

With the game scoreless in the fifth, the Mariners loaded the bases with no outs. Cirillo hit a sacrifice fly, the first run allowed by Harang, and Mark McLemore added an RBI single to make it 2-0. 

The 11 scoreless innings to start his career surpassed the Oakland record of 10, set by John Henry Johnson when he started out in 1978. 

“He pitched well enough to win on a lot of occasions, but not tonight,” A’s manager Art Howe said. “He ran up against a tough customer.” 

Ruben Sierra’s grounder in the sixth scored John Olerud, who doubled and went to third on a passed ball. Mike Cameron added an RBI double in the seventh. 

Miguel Tejada’s single in the first inning extended his hitting streak to 13 games. 

Seattle’s Ichiro Suzuki extended his hitting streak to 12 games with a single in the seventh. 

Notes: The last 12 homers that Garcia has allowed have been solo shots. ... Last year the Mariners took the season series against the Athletics 10-9, but Oakland was the only team to beat Seattle more than five times.

UC puts India program on hold

Tuesday June 04, 2002

BERKELEY–The University of California temporarily is suspending its fall 2002 study abroad program in India, citing the military buildup and the threat of war with Pakistan. 

The decision, announced Monday, follows a State Department warning against traveling to India or Pakistan. 

No UC students currently are studying in India, but 16 had been scheduled to go there this summer. 

UC has study abroad sites at New Delhi and Hyderabad. It plans to leave infrastructure and staff in place and will consider reinstating the program if the situation improves. 

UC already has suspended its study abroad program in Israel because of conflict there. 

In past years, the program was temporarily halted in China following the Tiananmen Square uprisings, in the Middle East during the Gulf War and in Indonesia during the 1999 civil unrest there.

Disablity rights group sues Walgreens stores

By Kurtis Alexander Daily Planet Staff
Tuesday June 04, 2002

East Bay resident Anne Finger has had a hard time buying personal hygiene products at her local drugstore lately, and blames plastic blue storage bins that are stacked in the aisles, keeping her from reaching the retail shelves. 

While some might be inclined to move the bulky bins, Finger, 50, has a physical disability which requires her to use a wheelchair and limits her ability. 

The Berkeley-based Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, Inc. has joined Finger in filing a lawsuit against drugstore giant Walgreen Co., alleging that the retailer routinely blocks access to aisles and goods and thus fails to comply with California law requiring full and equal access to customers. 

One of the two East Bay stores cited in the suit is the Berkeley Walgreens at 2995 San Pablo Ave. The other store is at 5055 Telegraph Ave. in Oakland. 

Finger said that her inability to access goods at the two stores is not intermittent, but chronic and that she’s raised the issue with store managers four or five times now. 

“They say the right things, but the next time you come in, it’s the same way,” she said. “They seem to have a policy of using the aisles for storage.” 

A lack of response from management prompted Finger to file the May 22 suit which could force Walgreens to make policy changes as well as award Finger a monetary sum. The suit was filed in Alameda County Superior Court. 

Ilinois-based Walgreens declined to comment on pending lawsuits and did not return phone calls requesting information about their access protocols. The retailer has one month to issue a legal response to the May filing. 

The nonprofit DREDF, which has also filed recent disability suits against corporations Chevron and Amtrak, says a lawsuit is its last-resort in seeking compliance from the company that has not addressed its complaints.  

“Our main goal in this suit is a policy change in the inventory management practices of Walgreens,” said DREDF attorney Linda Kilb. 

Kilb was optimistic that Walgreens would assent to the needs of the disabled. 

“We’re not talking about them having to rebuild things... Their architectural design is fine. We’re talking about them taking a different approach [to stocking merchandise],” she said, noting that the latter was a much less costly prospect. 

Despite access issues, Finger continues to shop at the two Walgreens stores near her home, about twice a month she says. 

“Being discriminated against doesn’t make me want to go away. It makes me want to try harder,” she said. 


Thousands eligible are not getting electricity discount

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Tuesday June 04, 2002

Thousands of low-income Berkeley residents eligible for a 40 percent reduction in their electricity bills may not be taking advantage of the opportunity. 

Pacific Gas & Electric released statistics Monday showing that only 52 percent of Alameda County customers eligible for state-mandated reductions through the California Alternate Rate for Energy, or CARE, are taking part in the program. 

“We need to do more,” said PG&E spokesman Jason Alderman, noting that by comparison 78 percent of eligible Santa Clara County customers are enrolled in CARE. 

Statewide, according to PG&E figures, 600,000 customers have signed up, but another 400,000 who are eligible are not enrolled. 

Alderman said PG&E has not compiled Berkeley-specific figures, but he noted that there are about 40,000 customers in the city and roughly 10 percent are eligible for CARE. If the overall statistics for Alameda County hold true in Berkeley, some 2,000 eligible customers may not be enrolled. 

PG&E representatives and members of local community groups fanned out to Bay Area company offices Monday to sign up customers, who typically show up in large numbers on the first Monday of a new month. 

Georgina Aguila of the Spanish Speaking Unity Council, an Oakland advocacy group, was on hand to help with enrollments. 

She said her group can help get the word out to members of the local Latino community who may be uninformed or scared to enroll. 

“They’re afraid to apply,” said Aguila, noting that once they do, they can realize substantial savings. 

Alderman said the Unity Council is one of several community groups PG&E taps to get out the word about CARE. He said summer is a good time to enroll since people often make heavier use of air conditioners and electricity bills rise. 

New income requirements, set at 175 percent of the federal poverty line, went into effect yesterday making thousands more eligible statewide. 

Last year for example, a family of four making $31,100 or less was eligible for CARE. As of Monday, that figure is set at $32,000 or less. 

University Avenue corner may be deemed international food district

By Chris Nichols Daily Planet Staff
Tuesday June 04, 2002

Plans for deeming the corner of San Pablo and University Avenues as an International Marketplace may soon become a reality.  

The marketplace campaign, supported by both city officials and local store and restaurant owners, hopes to promote awareness among the unique and ethnically diverse restaurants near and around the intersection. 

According to Mayor Shirley Dean the large concentration of Indian and Hispanic restaurants and stores makes the spot ideal for the international food district designation. In addition there are places that sell Thai, Spanish, French, Chinese and Pakistani foods.  

“I would really like to see it happen. People want an experience when they shop and dine. This would give them that experience, a taste of different things. That’s always been one of Berkeley’s strong points,” Dean said. 

According to Dean the city hopes to facilitate the growth of the district by producing brochures detailing the unique foods and spices at each restaurant, hanging banners in the area and placing maps of the district throughout Berkeley. 

With 11 unique and diverse restaurants within a block of each other, the intersection of University and San Pablo Avenues is a great location for an International Marketplace, Khanna said.  

City officials, local merchants and the UAA have gathered recently at a series of meeting to discuss Ideas for the Marketplace campaign. 

“At first not too many people attended the meetings, they thought we were just wasting our time. But as we go, our attendance is getting bigger and bigger and bigger,” Khanna said. 

According to Khanna, the International Marketplace would include businesses and restaurants as far north as Hearst Avenue, south to Allston Way and east to either 9th or 10th Street.  

“Once it gets going it’s going to be as popular as places like Jack London Square and the 4th Street area. We want to bring an awareness to the populous. We want people to try us out. We want people, when they ask where they’re going to eat in Berkeley to think of us,” said Khanna. 

“I think it’s a wonderful idea. We need to have a focus in this part of town. Each business here is unique, each one has it’s own specialty,” said Jorge Pena, owner of Pena’s Bakery on San Pablo Avenue.  

Mexican pastries and deserts, including flan and tres leches, a pound cake-like-mix made from three types of milk, set the bakery apart according to Pena.  

“Other places sell some of the pastries but we’re the only ones to make them from scratch,” Pena said. 

The campaign hopes to create greater advertising strength for the area by combining the efforts of the businesses which otherwise would not  

According to Steve Winston, owner of the Spanish Tables, a specialty store selling food and wine from Spain and Portugal, the area was a good fit when he opened in September.  

“I’m really excited about what’s going on. We want this to be an ethnic food shopping area,” said Winston. 

According to Winston the Spanish Tables attracts customers from all over the Bay Area and is a compliment to both the New World Spanish food and other specialty restaurants and stores in the area.

Power traders sued in California on behalf of Washington state

The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

SEATTLE – A consumer-rights lawyer is seeking $1 billion in damages from some of the nation’s largest power companies, claiming they made billions from artificially created power shortages during last year’s power crunch. 

Class-action status is sought for the lawsuit, filed Monday in San Francisco Superior Court by Seattle lawyer Steve Berman. He seeks to represent hundreds of thousands of ratepayers in 21 of Washington’s 28 public utility districts. 

In a statement, Berman said his was the first legal action seeking damages for affected ratepayers outside California. California’s lieutenant governor and attorney general previously filed similar, separate lawsuits on behalf of California ratepayers. 

Berman’s lawsuit asks the court to force the defendants, who so far number 13, to return profits “wrongfully amassed” since January 2001 and make restitution to the ratepayers. 

“In our opinion, the fix was in, and Washington electric ratepayers were set up to be the losers,” Berman said. 

According to the complaint, the defendants own or control 19 gas-fired power-generating plants in California and conspired to create a cartel to withhold power from the market, creating artificial shortages and causing price spikes. It also contends the defendants engaged in transactions designed to inflate the cost of electricity. 

The impact was crippling on PUDs in the Northwest that were forced to buy power on the spot market, Berman said. 

“Most of the PUDs tried to absorb the rate increases the defendants engineered, but simply ran out of money,” he said. “They had no choice but to go to the ratepayers with higher rates” while the power brokers posted “obscenely huge profits.”

California cattle identified with bovine tuberculosis

The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

SACRAMENTO – A herd of 3,000 dairy cattle in Tulare County has been quarantined and 56 cows have been killed after a federal meat inspector found traces of bovine tuberculosis. 

The disease was suspected four weeks ago when an inspector noticed suspicious lesions on beef in a Hanford meat packing plant, Steve Lyle, spokesman for the California Department of Food and Agriculture said Monday. 

A test confirmed the disease and the Holstein cow was traced to the Tulare dairy. Further tests found dozens of cows were exposed to the disease. 

“We have 89 cattle that have tested positive for exposure. That’s a lot,” Lyle said. 

Lyle said 56 cows were killed Friday and 33 were scheduled to be killed Tuesday. 

Lyle refused to name the farm where the outbreak occurred, citing biosecurity concerns. He said farm employees and the milk processor that buys milk from the dairy have been notified. 

Under the quarantine, no cow can be moved from the farm until it is tested as free of the disease, Lyle said. 

Bovine TB is a deadly lung disease that has been found in Michigan and Texas and is commonly found in Mexico. The last known case in the state was in 1991. 

People can contract the disease by working closely with infected cows or by drinking raw milk or eating uncooked meat from infected cows. Nearly all milk sold in California is pasteurized and meat is inspected before being sold.

Copyright rulings stand despite Napster bancruptcy

By David Kravets The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO – Napster Inc.’s bankruptcy filing Monday won’t alter rulings by a judge and a federal appeals court that the Internet song-swapping service unlawfully violated the music industry’s copyrights. 

In the closely watched copyright infringement case, the music recording industry convinced U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel and the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that Napster’s business model was illegal. 

Because it allowed millions of music fans to download and swap copyright music for free, Patel last year ordered the online service shuttered until it could guarantee none of the music it allowed to be shared was copyright. 

While the bankruptcy immediately halts that case, which has been in the pretrial stage for three years, Monday’s bankruptcy developments let stand the nation’s first precedential rulings outlawing Napster-like businesses. 

“Certainly, the rulings from the 9th Circuit and the court remain in effect,” said Harvey Dunn, a Dallas-based technology lawyer. “Any third party seeking to emulate Napster is going to face that same case law trying to do something comparable to what Napster was doing.” 

The Recording Industry Association of America, a legal trade group representing the big recording labels in the copyright case, has launched new suits at other firms with Napster-like models. In doing so, they are invoking precedents born in the Napster case. 

Still, the bankruptcy shields Napster from perhaps paying hundreds of millions of dollars in damages to the industry for violating its copyrights. 

But while the recording industry may not recoup all or any of its losses from copyright violations, experts said the recording industry was victorious nevertheless. By flexing its legal muscle, it trampled a business allowing 60 million Napster users to violate the industry’s copyrights with the click of a computer mouse. 

Indeed, Conrad Hilbers, Napster’s chief executive, said in a statement Monday that the bankruptcy filing was a legal maneuver to assist it in becoming a legitimate online music service.

SBC, Yahoo in joint venture launch Internet service

By David Koenig AP Business Writer
Tuesday June 04, 2002

DALLAS – Phone company SBC Communications Inc. and online giant Yahoo! Inc. have teamed up to launch an Internet service they hope will challenge AOL and Microsoft for dominance of the dial-up market. 

SBC and Yahoo plan to add a cobranded high-speed Internet access service this summer. SBC is a leading provider of faster, so-called broadband service. 

The companies did not disclose financial terms, but officials said SBC and Yahoo will share revenue from online advertising and commerce. In addition, Yahoo will receive a portion of every monthly subscription service, they said. 

The service, called SBC Yahoo Dial, will charge $21.95 per month; less for customers who order other services from SBC. 

Despite its relatively slower speed, far more U.S. households still use dial-up service instead of high-speed access through phone lines or cable modems. Jason Few, an SBC vice president working on the joint venture, said dial-up is not a dying technology. 

“I don’t see the dial-up business going away for quite some time,” Few said. “We have an opportunity to grow our share.” 

San Antonio-based SBC has 1.8 million dial-up subscribers, who will be folded over into the joint venture. 

The SBC-Yahoo partnership was announced in November, but the companies had not disclosed many details until Monday. SBC Yahoo Dial is being advertised online and by direct mail, with a radio and newspaper advertising campaign expected to begin in about two weeks. 

Frederick Moran, an analyst for Jefferies & Co., said the venture represented an attempt by Yahoo to barter its Internet name for subscription-service income. 

“It’s a sensible way for Yahoo to capitalize on their Internet name, but whether this will lead to additional profits remains to be seen,” Moran said. “The demise of Internet advertising is still a big overhang for Yahoo stock.” 

Yahoo claims a user base of 237 million people for its Web site. The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company lost $93 million on revenue of $717 million last year, while SBC earned $7.2 billion on revenue of $45.9 billion. 

In trading Monday, shares of SBC fell $1.14 to $33.15, and Yahoo shares slipped 34 cents to $15.68. 

Winona Ryder shoplifting, drug hearing interrupted by injury

By Erica Werner The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

BEVERLY HILLS – Winona Ryder’s preliminary hearing on shoplifting and drug charges was interrupted Monday when a television camera bumped her on the way into court, and her attorney reported later that she suffered a broken right arm. 

Ryder arrived for the hearing late, in time for only brief testimony by a store security official before a lunch break. Further testimony was postponed when she returned to court complaining that she had injured her arm pushing through a crush of reporters and photographers on the way back from lunch. 

Her attorney was at her right side as she walked through the crowd, and television footage showed a sheriff’s deputy appearing to collide with a cameraman, who fell into the diminutive actress from the left. As the deputy stumbles, Ryder, who had been smiling, can be seen suddenly grimacing in pain. 

Ryder was cradling her left elbow after emerging from the group of reporters at the courthouse door, however, leading prosecutors to raise questions about which arm was really hurt, said Jane Robison, a district attorney spokeswoman. 

Her attorney, Mark Geragos, said later that she was “whacked” on her right elbow from behind. She was holding her left arm in order to elevate her right arm, which she had previously broken about a year ago while filming the upcoming comedy “Mr. Deeds,” he said. 

“She’s in a lot of pain,” Geragos added. 

When Ryder emerged from the judge’s chambers her coat was off and she had a large white bandage on her right elbow. Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Elden S. Fox said that Ryder would be seen by a physician and the hearing would be delayed. 

He asked Ryder if that was OK with her. 

“Yes, your honor,” said the actress, whose previous credits include “Little Women,” “Girl, Interrupted,” “Heathers,” “Beetlejuice” and “Reality Bites.”

Injured rock climber plucked from wall at Yosemite Park

The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK – An injured rock climber was rescued by helicopter Monday after spending a night on a sheer granite wall. 

The climber was injured Sunday when loose rocks tumbled on him and he fell a short distance, said park spokeswoman Deb Schweizer. He injured a shoulder and elbow. 

The Colorado man, whose name was not immediately released, was attempting a challenging route on Cathedral Rocks, a dramatic peak across the valley from El Capitan. He was about 300 feet short of reaching the top of the 2,000-foot climb. 

A man and woman were killed last year climbing the same route, Direct North Buttress. A park investigation said falling rocks caused the deaths, Schweizer said. 

The stranded climber spent the night on a ledge with his partner until a team of rescuers reached him and hauled him to a place where he and a ranger could be lifted to safety by helicopter. 

He was taken to a medical clinic in the park for treatment. 

City seeks greener power

By Neil G. Greene Special to the Daily Planet
Monday June 03, 2002




Berkeley leaders are taking the adage “being green” to the next level. The city plans to start sapping the sun's free and clean energy with planned implementation of solar panels atop the downtown Public Safety Building in 2004. 

Having already made city facilities more energy-efficient, going solar will help the city meet its stated goal of reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 15 percent by 2010. 

"Converting municipal buildings to solar fits right in with everything we're doing," said Councilmember Linda Maio, who authored the recent proposal to use solar energy. "It's the cleanest and best renewable energy source there is. It would be so wonderful to convert to solar power.” 

Approximately 12 percent of the electricity generated in California comes from renewable resources. At one time, Californians had direct access to renewable energy, meaning they had the option of purchasing electricity from companies that guaranteed that half the power came from renewable energy—including solar power, wind power and geothermal heat. 

Since that option has not been available to consumers since the energy crisis in 2000, Berkeley leaders are now embracing their green momentum and taking measures into their own hands. 

While it was originally believed that the best solar project would include placing photovoltaic panels on the roofs of several city buildings, recent city research has revealed that a one-step-at-a-time approach will save time, money and energy in the long run. 

"Our research is showing that if we do several small projects, we'll pay more. So in order to make this cost effective we want to concentrate on one building," said Energy Planner Neal De Snoo, who said the Public Safety Building was selected because of its high level of energy consumption and the large size of its new roof. 

The project's first stage includes determining engineering specifications, taking the project to bid, selecting a contractor and solar voltaic panels and connecting the solar source to the broader electricity grid. The panels will tie into the building's main electrical supply, so when the amount of energy harnessed exceeds the amount consumed by the building, the energy usage dial will spin backwards, creating a net reduction in the amount of energy purchased from PG&E. 

The panels will be hidden from the view of pedestrians, lying flat on the roof of the building. They are designed by Berkeley-based PowerLight Corp., a brand currently used by Whole Foods. Most other makes of panels tilt upwards to face midrange spring and autumn sun exposure and are more visible. 

Funding issues surrounding the solar panel project will be included in next years' budget hearing which will go before the City Council early this month. The solar project will be phased in over two years, combining the budget for two fiscal years into one pool of money. Next year's funds will be allocated towards design and engineering work, with the actual placement of the panels coming once the 2004 funds are available. 

"We've gone pretty far in energy conservation and efficiency. It can be done quite easily and we’re doing that," said De Snoo. "So the next phase is to go to the next level of generating our own energy."  

Going solar is just one step in the city’s effort to step a little more softly. The energy retrofitting of city-owned buildings has saved tax payers $370,000 and more than 2.1 million kilowatt hours of electricity and has reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 1,200 tons, according to city officials. 

This was accomplished by removing incandescent lamps and installing compact fluorescent bulbs, replacing inefficient lamps with new lamps and electronic ballasts, installing occupancy sensors to turn off lights, upgrading heating and ventilation systems and improving building control systems.  

Similar upgrades are available to city businesses through the city's energy office, which offers free energy audits and provides financial assistance for projects under the Small Commercial Technical Assistance Program.  

Black Oak Books began the city's program eight months ago and has seen their utility bills drop by 35 percent, saving them hundreds of dollars, according to bookstore employees.

Mayor Dean should have voted for housing

Paul Hogarth
Monday June 03, 2002


To the Editor: 


I was very pleased that the City Council last week voted to approve an affordable housing project at 2517 Sacramento Street (reported in "Embattled Housing Project Approved," 5/29/02). This project will provide 40 units of much-needed low-cost housing for seniors -- along a major transit route where the demand for parking will be limited. Affordable housing is desperately needed in Berkeley, and this project integrates all the important aspects of reasonable city planning. 

For a City Council that is chronically divided along party lines, the votes to approve this project transcended ideology. Progressives like Kriss Worthington and Linda Maio joined conservatives like Polly Armstrong and Mim Hawley to approve the project -- because it was common-sense. As Councilmember Maudelle Shirek said at the meeting, "I do not understand how people can oppose a much-needed, well-designed project." 

Sadly, Mayor Shirley Dean voted against it. By siding with a small but vocal minority of neighborhood residents who had already dragged the process for months, delaying the much-needed construction of the project and driving up its costs, Mayor Dean demonstrated her complete disregard for affordable housing in Berkeley. 

Unfortunately, this was no surprise. Throughout her career, Shirley Dean has always opposed good projects that create low-cost housing for those who need it the most. In 1995, she opposed a housing project on Rose Street for people with AIDS. Later that same year, she successfully blocked a project to build low-income housing at Haste and Telegraph -- on a lot that has been vacant since 1986. Seven years later, this lot still stands as an eyesore for the Southside community, and a monument to Mayor Dean's abysmal record on housing. 

Furthermore, Shirley Dean has also been a consistent opponent of tenants' rights. She opposed the original Measure in 1980 that created rent control -- and has allowed literally thousands of low-income people to stay in Berkeley. Two years ago, she opposed Measure Y -- that has strengthened eviction protections for our most vulnerable tenants. And in 1995, she lobbied the state legislature to pass the Costa-Hawkins Act, which has gutted our rent control system and has shot rental prices up into the outer stratosphere. 

As housing continues to be the most important issue facing Berkeley, Mayor Dean is dangerously out of step. 

We need a mayor who will support good development projects that create low-cost housing -- not one who will side with NIMBY's to block them. We need a mayor who believes in rent control and will fight to strengthen our ordinance -- not one who is in the pocket of landlords. Finally, we need a Mayor who is committed enough to affordable housing that they are willing to take political risks to do the right thing. 

I look forward to voting for a new mayor on November 5th. 




Paul Hogarth 

Rent Board Commissioner

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” opens this year’s Cal Shakespeare Festival

By Robert Hall, Special to the Daily Planet
Monday June 03, 2002

“The course of true love never did run smooth,” Lysander famously notes in Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. 

East Bay weather can supply a bumpy ride, too. The California Shakespeare Festival is one of the season’s most pleasant events, but Mother Nature takes a hand in the experience, and her fickle temper forced artistic director Jonathan Moscone to put the best face on the brisk wind buffeting his bundled-up opening night crowd on Saturday. 

“Welcome to this beautiful but volatile space!” he said. Everyone laughed. The space, with its rolling green backdrop, is beautiful, but none of us had climbed the slope to the Bruns Theater in the Orinda hills for good weather. We’d come for good theater, and Cal Shakespeare delivered “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” sunny enough to ward off any chill.  

Moscone has cast the play in a Victorian mode, the women in hoop skirts, the men in swallowtail coats. That may be a surprise, but it turns out to be remarkably fitting. 

In the scramble to reinvent Shakespeare, theater companies run the risk of overproducing his work. Berkeley Rep nearly flattened Much Ado about Nothing last fall, but as Moscone proved in his recent Twelfth Night, he has a light touch. He may nudge Shakespeare, but he nudges him in the right direction, and his decision to render this well-known tale against a milieu of Victorian rigidity, in which women are expected to do what men tell them or else, gives the production a jolt. 

Don’t forget, though “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is a comedy, it begins when a king threatens to execute a disobedient girl. Of course that dire note soon fades in favor of a more playful one. 

The play is a seemingly impossible tangle of angry parents, desperate lovers, mistaken identities, kings, queens, fairies, magic, transformations, journeys that end in lovers’ meetings and even a play within a play, but part of its magic is how Shakespeare threads all these loose ends into a happy dance at the play’s close. 

Moscone’s production is itself a happy dance, with help from talented associates. Set designer Riccardo Hernandez lays out a rich grassy sward for royals, rude mechanicals, lovers and fairies to romp on, adding a huge crescent moon, on which Titania and Bottom dally, and a giant picture frame to set off trees strung with enchanted lights. Meg Neville sews up more than a dozen handsome costumes, from Oberon’s rich East Indian robes to 

Hippolyta’s severe black silk. Lighting man Stephen Strawbridge supplies bright Athenian sunlight and mysterious forest gloom, and Kristina Forester and Sarah Jo Zaharako punctuate the drama with discrete but evocative music. 

As for the actors, they range from good to outstanding. J. Peter Callendar is strong and sonorous as both Theseus and Oberon, and Nancy Carlin is a richly passionate Titania. Brian Keith Russell makes a nicely restrained Bottom, 

Susannah Schulman is a hot and flirty Helena, Andy Murray grins wryly as a Cockney Puck, complete with bowler hat and spats, Elia MacDougall winds Hermia as tight as a clock, Colman Domingo makes a dandy Lysander, and Sky Soleil is a sturdy Demetrius. As Peter Quint, Anthony Fusco manages his amateur actors with fitting comic restraint, and Liam Vincent’s Thisbe is the funniest drag act since Dame Edna.  

Though Samuel Pepys found “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” “the most insipid, ridiculous play,” audiences have loved it for 400 years, and Cal Shakespeare’s sharply conceived production reminds us why. It’s performed at 100 Gateway Boulevard, Orinda, until June 23 and will be followed by productions of “Macbeth”, “The Seagull”, and “The Winter’s Tale”. For tickets call 510-548-9666.

Cal crew claims fourth straight title

Daily Planet Wire Services
Monday June 03, 2002

The No. 1 Cal men’s varsity eight won its fourth-consecutive Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championship on the Cooper River in Cherry Hill, NJ, June 31. The winning time of 5:26.81 was just 3 seconds off the course record set by the Bears in 1999. In addition to the varsity eights success, the JV eight also brought home gold for the second consecutive year. For the record, it was coach Steve Gladstone’s 10th Varsity Challenge Cup title-second only to Charles “Pop” Courtney who won 11 titles between 1901-1915.  

In the varsity race Cal got up early and stayed up all the way down the course to the finish. The Bears led by three quarters of a length as the crews crossed the 1000 while Wisconsin and Washington battled for second place. Cal stayed in front and was ready to sprint to the line but never needed to use its last gear. The Badgers beat the Huskies to the line, while Oregon State came through Princeton to take fourth as Navy finished sixth.  

“It was a solid race,” said senior Scott Frandsen. “We picked up our start the last couple of weeks and we got off the line well today. We settled to a 37.5 and just hit a rhythm that was really, really solid.”  

“That was an oarsome race,” said stroke Jeffrey Nalty. “We took it from the start and got like four seats in the opening 20 strokes and we kind of had the race from there. Every move we had we moved away. We rowed with rhythm and we rowed with length and the other crews just couldn’t keep up. The level of collegiate racing in the U.S. has stepped up tenfold from last year and that’s what makes today’s win so satisfying.”  

“We weren’t down for one stroke of the race,” said coxswain Michael Vallarelli. “We executed our moves, stayed in the tube and found some really good swing today. Our plan was to not worry about the other crews and execute our race. It was nice that we didn’t have to come from behind against those crews, but so long as we executed our race, I think we’d probably get the same result.”  

The Cal JV eight also led it’s race from start to finish. Cal and Washington established themselves as the early leaders with Cornell and Princeton trying to join the fray. At 500 Cal led UW by a third of a length. Cal continued to grow its advantage with four crews battling for second at the 1000. Cal continued to pull away from the pack and outdistanced Cornell and Washington to the finish.  

After a excellent semifinal performance by the freshman eight, the Bears could not muster an encore on Saturday. However, the Cal freshman did finish off the season No. 4 in the nation.  

The Cal varsity four withstood a strong early push from Wisconsin and Cornell, but emerged with the gold. The Bears open four brought home the silver.

Market molds entrepreneurs

By Matthew Artz, Special to the Daily Planet
Monday June 03, 2002

Just two blocks from the Fourth Street retail promenade, the operators of Berkeley’s newest monthly market have aspirations of doing more than just giving a space for local craftspeople to sell their goods. 

They want to give them the tools to be successful business people. 

The West Berkeley Open Air Market, in its second year, located in a parking lot below the Interstate 80 overpass at University Avenue, is organized by the West Berkeley Neighborhood Development Corp. The market is just one part of their effort to empower the residents of their neighborhood and greater Berkeley. 

“I don’t see this as just another marketplace but as a place to exchange ideas,” said Willie Phillips, president of the 10-year-old corporation, which receives funding from the city of Berkeley and private foundations.  

The market fosters cooperation between established vendors and part-time craftspeople who want to go into business for themselves. 

“It’s a super good idea. I try to get people into this business all the time,” said Michael Brady, a jewelry vendor for 20 years. But Brady admits that artisans starting out face greater obstacles than he did. 

“Twenty years ago this area was wide open. Now if you go to K-Mart, they have the same type of stuff that I sell. To start out now it’s tougher for sure,” he explained. 

For aspiring entrepreneurs in West Berkeley the obstacles are numerous. “People like this are invisible to banks and the Small Business Authority,” said Betsy Morris, the corporation’s secretary. “A lot of people here don’t have homes, and if you don’t own your home, you have [any] capital and can’t get money.” 

In addition to financial concerns, Phillips notes that new vendors also need business training and connections in order to have the chance to be successful. 

To help them in their endeavors, the corporation holds business training workshops. The programs are free, and offer interested parties counseling from successful vendors and small business people as well as access to agencies and organizations that provide financial, legal and logistical assistance. 

According to Morris, the country’s changing economy makes this program especially vital to local residents. “The whole economy is moving to self-employment. This is a pre-emptive effort for the community,” Morris said. 

For Phillips, who has lived in West Berkeley for 47 years, promoting economic self-sufficiency is not just attacking an isolated issue, it’s fighting a core ailment that has afflicted his neighborhood for years. 

“It’s really important to have creative ways to deal with the problems. Many people don’t connect the crime to economic issues,” said Phillips, who noted that the amount of money Berkeley allocates for economic development is minuscule in comparison with that earmarked for public safety. 

“We are trying to make that link, and create opportunity for people,” said Phillips. 

According to Bruce Williams, the market’s manager, there is already a success story. Last year an aspiring silk maker, set up shop at the market and took the seminar. He now owns his own shop in Oakland. 

Some vendors at Sunday’s market hoped that they too could make the transition to full-time businessperson. “I’d definitely be interested,” said Rhonda Hartzell a jewelry maker. “I think it would be a great thing to do.” 


Ferry service is a safety issue

Charles Smith
Monday June 03, 2002

To the Editor: 


After a major earthquake, highways and transit will be unusable due in large part to liquefaction and collapse of structures. The main forms of transportation will be walking, bicycles (which can be lifted over obstructions) and ferries. Fires in the cities may require mass evacuation. Planning now is needed to reduce the suffering and confusion when it happens. 

For those reasons, the availability of ferries is essential. A number of functioning ferries should be already in place and ready when needed. Landing piers at key locations should ready with at least minimum bus service right now. Whether those buses will actually be able to be used immediately after a quake is incidental, as clearing the bus routes connecting with the ferries should take top priority for people to escape. Piers should be built even in locations where ferry service is not currently provided. 

The more use of ferries that we can make now the better, and whether they make money is incidental to having them available when needed. The expansion of an existing basic ferry system and bus connections will be much simpler than starting from scratch during the turmoil after a big quake. 



Charles Smith 


Early music exhibition sets the tone of the Renaissance

By Miko Sloper, Special to the Daily Planet
Monday June 03, 2002

Whether you are a seasoned veteran of the pre-Classical music scene or a curious newcomer, this week’s Berkeley Festival and Exhibition provides a wide range of opportunities to binge in gluttonous aural indulgence, or sample a new but ancient part of the musical palette. 

Fans of exotic instruments will be interested in several rarities to be heard during the festival. Of course the most common keyboard instruments will be harpsichords and organs. Plucked string instruments will be mostly lutes and 

theorboes, and recorders will be played by virtuoso musicians. 

The Artaria Quartet features the basset clarinet while performing several Mozart pieces. This will give the clarinet parts a warmer timbre than usual, and present a tonal blend closer to that which Mozart's audiences would have 

heard. Of course their bowed instruments have gut strings, further sweetening the blend. 

Other concerts will feature triple harp, archlute, hurdy-gurdy, viola d'amore, virginal, shawm, sackbut and a host of other delightful unusual instruments. 

Female composers play prominent roles in several of the festival’s programs. The brilliant baroque chorale and instrumental ensemble Magnificat will sing psalms and motets of Chiara Margarita Cozzolani. The ensemble Anima Fortis will perform works of Barbara Strozzi and Isabella Leonarda. The medieval quintet Heliotrope will feature compositions of female troubadors.  

The most unusual offering of the festival is an equestrian ballet. That's right-- dancing horses! "LeCarrousel du Roi" returns by popular demand after proving a smash hit at the 2000 Berkeley Festival. Some of the finest riders on the west coast will show off the artistic talents of their great noble beasts as dressage shades into dance. This fabulous spectacle is sure to convert many early music fans to lovers of equestrian arts and convince horse lovers of the joys of Renaissance music. These performances are the only ones which happen outside of Berkeley. They will take place in Walnut Creek at the Heather Farms Park. 

Much of the music presented in this Festival is vocal. Many listeners who feel that "classical" singing style is too artificial and unnatural will be pleasantly surprised by the subtle and sweet vocal technique employed by Renaissance and Baroque performers. These singers aim for beautiful, clear and poetic expression of the text, rather than the bombastic power which characterizes operatic technique. 

Those who perform early music will be especially delighted by the huge exhibition of music publishers and instrument builders. Craftsmen and scholars come from all over the world to display their wares. This exhibition will be open Wednesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. in Zellerbach Hall. 

Many of the Festival's performances are scheduled during the morning hours and afternoons, so the ambitious concert-goer can easily attend several performances daily. 

Although the Bay Area is one of the recognized centers of early music performance, there won't be a concentration of pre-Classical music again until the next Berkeley Festival in the summer of 2004. 

Some of the concerts that merit special attention are: 

• The local ensemble Baroque Etcetera performs Bach's Cantata #78, which KPFA listeners will recognize as an often-heard theme, especially on Sunday mornings. 

• Soprano Twyla Whittaker presents "The Amorous Nightingale: A Celebration of Baroque Birdsong Arias." 

• La Foolia: Comedy in Early Music. 

• Songs of Orpheus: Ayres of John Dowland. 

• Old Age meets New Age: "Afro-Baroque." 

For a complete schedule of all Festival events, stop by the visitor information center in Zellerbach Hall. For tickets call (510) 642-9988.

Warren takes third in both her events at state finals

Staff Report
Monday June 03, 2002

Welch second in triple jump 



Kamaiya Warren and Solomon Welch each won medals at the CIF State Championship track & field meet on Saturday in Norwalk. 

Warren pulled off the double for which she has waited three years, taking third in both the shotput and discus. After reaching Saturday’s final on her last throw of Friday trials, Warren clinched third on her final throw with a toss of 45’10 3/4”. The UCLA-bound senior didn’t have a discus throw under 147 feet, but her best throw of 158’09” was more than 15 feet short of the winner, Billie Jo Grant of Arroyo Grande. Warren scored 12 points for the Panther girls, who finished tied for ninth overall with 16 points. 

The other St. Mary’s points came from Danielle Stokes’ fourth-place finish in the 100-meter hurdles. Stokes ran the race in 14.17, more than a quarter-second slower than her best time, and blamed her finish on contact with another runner. 

“I was making contact with (J.W. North’s Domenique Manning),” Stokes said. “We hit each others’ arm four times in the race.” 

St. Mary’s Bridget Duffy finished ninth in the 3,200-meter final, with Berkeley resident and Head-Royce senior Clara Horowitz winning the event. 

Welch was the only boy to score for St. Mary’s, taking second in the triple jump with a leap of 48’05 3/4”. The boys’ 4x100 relay team finished seventh.

The state of the arts

By Neil G. Greene, Special to the Daily Planet
Monday June 03, 2002

With the fifth annual Berkeley Arts Festival just around the corner now, festival organizers have begun raising money to create the best possible event in a city they contend is letting its vibrant art scene slowly slip away. 

At yesterday’s garden party fundraiser, festival supporters and patrons of the arts gathered to enjoy the sunny Sunday and talk about the state of the arts in Berkeley.  

“The City of Berkeley could do a lot more for artists. For a city with our reputation we do very little,” said festival founder and organizer Bonnie Hughes. 

While the city has contributed $20,000 to the festival’s $40,000 price tag, Hughes said too often money allocated to the arts funds only highly visible projects, rather than the back-street creators who teeter between starting their artistic career and struggling for a space in which to create. 

“A lot of creativity is ignored. People who do more experimental and inventive work don’t get a lot of support,” said Hughes. “It’s those things that are tried and true and sure to bring in the dollars that the city supports. This takes away from the vitality of the art scene.” 

Hughes once curated the Berkeley Store Gallery, which has since closed its doors and been replaced by Kinkos. 

The Gallery was renowned for its ability to both harness and house the full spectrum of Berkeley artists. There, sculptors mingled with painters, and musicians with poets. Musicians from across the country and from around the world came to the gallery to perform. 

However, since its closing in 2000, Gallery artists have percolated into the relative isolation of their respective studios and left part of the art scene disassociated from itself. This is one reason why Hughes believes the festival helps resurrect Berkeley’s artistic community. 

“The festival provides visibility for a wide variety of artists and reminds people of the depth and breadth of activity out there in the art world. It’s a worthy thing to do,” she said. 

At yesterday’s garden party, few in attendance doubted that the festival would go on if it weren’t for Hughes’ dedication and her seemingly magical ability to organize and raise the much needed and hard-to-come-by funds.  

“It takes mavericks like Bonnie to make the event happen,” said Joshua Hayes, a patron of the arts and contributor to yesterday’s fundraiser. He added that Berkeley’s problem with supporting the arts is two-fold. 

First, Hayes contends that within the city there is a general apathy stemming from people too stressed and overworked to get involved with the arts. This leaves them with little time to make arts events happen. 

Secondly, he said, little space is set aside or made available for the arts. 

“The arts aren’t profit driven. They don’t make as much money as Kinkos. We [society] only create space on commercial potential,” he said. 

In an effort to diversify and enhance the festival’s artistic experience, Hughes solicited the support and participation of theater stalwart George Cotes. Hughes and Cotes worked together and successfully gained approval from UC theater owners to use their theater from June 5 through November 10. However, the city subsequently denied a use-permit, leaving Cotes’ theater production on hold. 

With fingers still crossed, Cotes and Hughes are hopeful that enough support can be mustered to make the production happen. 

Despite bumps in the road, Hughes remains focused and determined to make this year’s festival a success. There will be a strong focus on kids’ arts, with the participation of VALA (Visual Arts, Language Arts), a nonprofit groups that helps organize youth art projects ranging from painting to sculpture and poetry. 

Burgeoning artists also will be given the opportunity to display their work throughout the festival in galleries and in the streets.  

The festival will be held from August 10 to 25.

Council should take stand on UC suspensions

Khalil Bendib
Monday June 03, 2002

To the Editor: 


In response to your letter by Susanne K. DeWitt a few days ago, let me first strongly agree with one point: hate crimes are a dangerous thing and we should all be vigilant not to let a climate of mutual suspicion take root in our community. That much I agree with. 

However, to attack Councilman Kriss Worthington, who has always been at the forefront of the fight against hatred and injustice, and to claim that he's somehow fostering intolerance by doing so was a bit hypocritical and underhanded.  

While everybody agrees that the atrocities of the second World War were barbaric and terrifying, to always bring back the specter of a holocaust of 60 years ago in order to defend Israel's present-day atrocities amounts to little more than an attempt to shut down all voices of dissent and to assist Sharon's unspeakable war crimes. 

Please stop using the holocaust to justify Israel's unjustifiable murders of innocent civilians, and stop portraying people, Arabs, Jews and others, who protest those crimes as abettors of anti-Semitism and hate. By doing so, you are sullying the very memories of the holocaust victims you claim to mourn. 

The UC students currently being prosecuted have risked being deported for the simple exercise of their First Amendment rights, and that is why, if our country indeed stands for freedom, the resolution proposed by Kriss  

Worthington is so necessary. Non-violent civil disobedience is an honored tradition in our country, one that should not lead to such drastic consequences as deportation and a sudden end to one's education. 

Thank you, Mr. Worthington for your moral courage and honorable leadership in this matter! Berkeley is proud to always stand alone if need be for the values of justice and freedom. Please never let a vocal minority intimidate you by resorting to the same old tired, self-serving clichés. 





Khalil Bendib 


England can’t hold on, Spain breaks hex

The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

YOKOHAMA, Japan – Spain finally figured out how to start a World Cup with a victory. England still doesn’t know how to beat Sweden anywhere. 

The Spaniards broke a 52-year winless spell in World Cup openers, dating back to a 1950 victory over the United States. Goals from Raul, Juan Carlos Valeron and Fernando Hierro lifted the Spaniards over Slovenia 3-1 Sunday night (Sunday morning EDT) at Gwangju, South Korea. 

“It wasn’t easy, there are a lot of surprises and all games are very close at this level,” Raul said. “There is more to come.” 

England must hope there are no more meetings with Sweden ahead. A second-half goal by Niclas Alexandersson gave the Swedes a 1-1 tie and stretched their unbeaten streak against the English to 10 games – 3-0-7 – since 1968. FIFA does not recognize all of those matches. 

“It didn’t look good in the first half,” Alexandersson said of Sweden’s one-goal deficit at Saitama, Japan. “We showed a lot of fighting spirit in the second half, when we came back into the game. We could have won the match.” 

Also on Sunday, Argentina, the pretournament favorite, edged Nigeria 1-0 at Ibaraki, Japan, while Paraguay and South Africa tied 2-2 at Busan, South Korea. 

Gabriel Batistuta, a fixture in the Argentina lineup but questionable to start after a poor, injury-plagued season in Italy, sent an angled header into the net off Juan Sebastian Veron’s swinging corner kick in the 63rd minute. 

Batistuta moved into a tie for sixth place in career World Cup goals with 10 with the winner. 

“I am not thinking of any records, I don’t care about that,” he said. “But if I score goals, it means that Argentina gets closer every time to our goal, to win the World Cup.” 

At Busan, in a half-empty 53,926-seat stadium, South Africa rallied from two goals down against Paraguay. 

Quinton Fortune scored on a last-minute penalty kick after a controversial call by the referee. Fortune drove the ensuing kick into the top right corner after the referee judged that Paraguay goalie Ricardo Tavarelli pulled down Sibusiso Zuma. Replays indicated the goalie barely touched Zuma when the South African already was on the way down. 

Referee Lubos Michel handed out eight yellow cards, four to each team. 

Meanwhile, U.S. coach Bruce Arena indicated star striker Clint Mathis might not start in Wednesday’s opener against Portugal because of a slow recovery from a torn knee ligament. 

“It’s been a tough month for him because he was physically behind the other players,” Arena said. 

Arena added that Mathis needs to develop a better work ethic. 

The most publicized injury, the torn thigh muscle of French star Zinedine Zidane, is making good progress and the midfielder started running again this weekend. France dearly missed its playmaker in a stunning 1-0 loss to Senegal.

Pomo mother and daughter visit UC

By Chris Nichols, Daily Planet Staff
Monday June 03, 2002

Julia Parker sometimes dreams of baskets. After 40 years of weaving baskets and serving as a cultural interpreter with the Indian Cultural Program at Yosemite National Park, Parker, a Kashaya Pomo, hopes others will continue to share her dreams.  

Sunday’s Family Day at UC Berkeley’s Hearst Museum provided Parker and her daughter, Lucy, such an opportunity to share. The two demonstrated a hands-on approach to the art of native Pomo style basket weaving, told stories and played native games with an audience of both parents and children. 

Though the elder Parker did not originally speak the native Pomo language or know how to weave the traditional baskets, she researched her ancestors practices and quickly became an adept weaver. As a National Park Service ranger in Yosemite Valley, the elder Parker’s duties were to both weave baskets and speak with the public. 

“After a while they said put down your baskets, you have a lot to say. So I started and now I can’t quit talking,” said the elder Parker. 

At the event, Parker and her daughter explained both the practical techniques of weaving and the cultural context of the tradition, emphasizing the importance of patience and resourcefulness. 

“Putting together a basket is like putting together a house. We want it to last,” said the younger Parker. “We can’t go to K-Mart or Target to buy our things. So, it’s our responsibility to learn to take care of these materials, these plants.” 

According to the younger Parker, who is of Miwok, Paiute and Pomo descent, the materials for the baskets are mostly area specific. The younger Parker and her mother rely on red willow, a plant found on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevadas near Mono Lake, to construct their Pomo style baskets. While most native groups use willow for weaving material, sumac and various roots including bracken fern root and sedge root are also used. 

Constructing the native baskets, used for gathering supplies, preparing food or as toys for children, is a very personal experience according to the elder Parker. 

“Each basket tells a story. In our classes we can tell things about the people through their baskets, through the designs,” she said. 

The mother and daughter team have crossed the country sharing the history and techniques of their craft. The two hold workshops and camps throughout the year and are often invited to share their knowledge at cultural centers. 

For Barbara Takiguchi, coordinator of public programs for Hearst Museum, the mother and daughter represent a link between information and material culture. The cultural interpreters are a part of this year’s “regeneration theme” at Family Day, an event run by the museum for the past 12 years. 

“We were looking to make the collections come alive. Julia and Lucy are prime examples of that search. We wanted to provide access to and take the next step to present these objects and this history to the general public,” said Takiguchi.  

The four generations of the Parker family represent a strong example of the preservation of history through family.  

For the younger Parker, preserving history can be thrilling but also overwhelming. “We get very apprehensive, we want it right now. It’s so important for us to carry this on,” she said. 

Researching the traditional dance, games, clothing and weaving from three separate tribes has left the younger Parker well aware of the vastness of her ancestor’s cultural history and the importance of preservation. 

For the mother and daughter, teaching is the best way to preserve. “We can teach each other and the best way to learn is at home, to teach your family,” said the younger Parker. 

For Takiguchi, showing children the similarities of culture is a critical step in eliminating prejudices. “I always thought the program should show what makes us similar, what makes us human. With Family Day, when the children start to see that, they don’t form judgments, and that can be extremely valuable,” said Takiguchi. 

According to Oakland resident Janet King, much can be learned from the cultural presentation. “I think this is about time. We’re such a fast culture, we’re always worried about time. To take the time to do a basket, I think a lot of people will realize the prayers, the thoughts that go into this. It’s not about how fast you make it. It’s not about speed,” said King. 

Sunday’s presentation provided parent Burke Treidler an opportunity to expose his daughter to something she otherwise would not get the chance to see. “I wanted to find something cultural for the kids to do,” said Treidler. 

By the end of the presentation, the elder Parker led a circle of children in a traditional Native American gambling game played with dice made from walnuts. As Parker instructed the children on how to play the native game, she added “You know, we like to have fun every once in a while too. We aren’t always weaving baskets.”

Bay Briefs

Monday June 03, 2002

Boy nearly hangs himself 


EAST PALO ALTO — An 8-year-old boy was recovering this weekend after he nearly hanged himself on a school jungle gym with a jump rope a day earlier. 

Police say the third-grader almost strangled himself Friday after tying a jump rope to the top of a playground climbing structure and then wrapping the other end around his neck before jumping. 

Three young classmates held his body up to keep the rope from tightening, police said. 

The boy lost consciousness and suffered a mild seizure after playground monitors loosened the rope and brought him down. He was resuscitated by a school aide who performed CPR, police said. 

San Mateo County Sheriff’s Sgt. Rick Yearman said the boy didn’t intend to harm himself and the incident is being treated as an accident. 

The boy was taken to Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford where he was listed in good condition. 


Murder suspect grabbed in bridge chase  


SAN RAFAEL— A homicide suspect led authorities on a chase that reached 100 mph and crossed the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge before the man was run off the road and arrested Saturday afternoon. 

Acting on a tip, Contra Costa sheriff’s deputies spotted John Krause in El Sobrante around 4:15 p.m. — and the pursuit began. Krause was wanted for allegedly shooting a Vallejo man last May. 

Krause eventually wound his way through Richmond and onto the bridge, sheriff’s Lt. Larry Gregg said. On the other side, San Rafael police picked up the chase, which ended around 4:50 p.m. when cruisers pushed him off the road and boxed in his gray Honda. 

No one was injured, San Rafael Sgt. Erik Masterson said, though several patrol cars were damaged. 

Contra Costa deputies arrested Krause and will transfer him to Vallejo, Gregg said. 


New toll rate on Golden Gate  

SAN FRANCISCO — Golden Gate Bridge officials say they need to increase tolls to $5 — though $8 would be even better. 

Bridge District officials are considering proposals that would raise the toll from its current $3 per car to $5 to help reduce the $452 million budget deficit they expect in five years. 

Angry commuters who attended a special meeting Thursday suggested the district only needed the money to pad the wallets of bridge managers. 

Bridge officials explained the bridge is in poor shape financially, and that even a $5 toll won’t balance the budget — they said an $8 toll is what the bridge really needs. 



Spilled fish slow traffic  

SAN FRANCISCO — A messy spill of fish parts backed up traffic for hours on the Bay Bridge as commuters tried to escape the city Friday afternoon. 

The spill happened on the lower deck just west of Yerba Buena Island around 1:30 p.m., according to the California Highway Patrol. The driver continued on for several miles before stopping — officer Erika Winfield said he might not have realized what happened.

San Francisco hotel fire leaves at least 100 people stranded

The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — At least 100 people were left homeless early Sunday after a fire ripped through a residential hotel. 

No one was seriously injured in the blaze, but 25 to 30 residents had to be rescued from fire escapes and the roof. Three people suffered minor smoke inhalation and were taken to San Francisco General Hospital, said San Francisco Fire Capt. Pete Howes. 

Fire officials were unsure what caused the three-alarm fire at the Baldwin Hotel just before 4 a.m. It started on a second-floor light shaft of the 200-room hotel and then spread to the roof and attic, Howes said. 

The American Red Cross set up an emergency shelter for those who were displaced by the blaze. It was unknown when residents would be allowed to return or how much damage was sustained, Howes said.

Fire scorches 700 acres in Los Padres National Forest

The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

OJAI — A 700-acre wildfire burned out of control Sunday along the steep, brush-covered hillsides of Los Padres National Forest, destroying an abandoned building and prompting the evacuation of two campgrounds. 

Campers left Pine Mountain, about 12 miles northeast of Ojai in Ventura County, as firefighters battled the growing flames in windy, dry weather that included temperatures in the 80s. 

A stretch of scenic Highway 33 was closed and the flames threatened a nearby ranch, said Kathy Good, a spokeswoman with the U.S. Forest Service. 

Air tankers, water-dropping helicopters and about 800 firefighters attacked the blaze, which was reported on private land in the National Forest about 3 p.m. Saturday. The cause was under investigation. 

“We’re hoping to catch this fire in the next couple of days because of unfavorable weather predictions for later in the week,” said Joanne Guttman, a spokeswoman for the Forest Service. 

By Sunday afternoon, the fire had destroyed an abandoned building once used for pack horses, Guttman said. 

Officials had originally estimated 1,200 acres were on fire but revised that after taking new measurements Sunday morning. 

The last known wildfire in the area was one of the largest in California history — 1932’s Matilija Fire, which covered 219,300 acres, Good said. 

Meanwhile, a California Department of Forestry fire chief apologized to San Bernardino residents for losing control of a fire-training exercise that may have sparked a 2,650-acre blaze near homes in the San Bernardino National Forest. 

The blaze was 60 percent contained Sunday with full containment expected by Friday. 

“We should not have burned there,” Tom O’Keefe, San Bernardino unit chief for the Department of Forestry, told more than 130 residents during meetings Saturday in the mountain resorts of Running Springs, Lake Arrowhead and Crestline. “I am sorry. I can’t apologize enough.” 

“There was a very narrow window where we do this kind of training, and we exceeded that window ... There will be repercussions for this,” he added. 

The blaze began Friday near state Highway 18, about 60 miles east of Los Angeles. It came within four miles of Lake Arrowhead and singed a wing of Arrowhead Springs resort, a 1930s hotel now used by a theology school. The fire also destroyed five outbuildings, but there were no evacuations 

Three firefighters sustained minor injuries, including heat exhaustion. 

The fire training exercise was designed to teach firefighters how to burn vegetation in the face of oncoming fire.

Flash animators find audience for Net ’webisodes’

By Paul Glader, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO – The dot-com boom may be bust, but multimedia art still thrives on the Internet, where audiences hungry for authentic, uncensored creative content are clicking through “webisodes” in droves. 

Using Flash animation software, programmers can create original 5-minute cartoons, build fine art images or design games where people can pound Osama bin Laden bloody in a virtual boxing ring. 

A number of artists have attracted cult followings, and some are drawing enough of an audience to make money through advertising and subscriptions. 

Macromedia Inc.’s $500 Flash animation software isn’t the only multimedia tool available for building 3-D graphics, Internet art and high-end animation. But because it is so easy to use, Flash has become the industry standard. 

For artists exploring this medium, the Internet has obvious appeal. 

“Unlike being an unpublished novelist or underground painter, with tools like Flash, you can distribute your work to millions,” said Stewart McBride, president and founder of United Digital Artists in New York. “You can be a Vincent van Gogh of the Web and actually be known in your lifetime. With traditional media that is not always possible.” 

The audience for Flash toons is small — hampered somewhat by the slow growth in fast Internet connections — but has potential, since Flash player software comes installed on most personal computers. 

About 1.3 million copies of Flash have sold since 1996. During the dot-com boom, many corporations used it to give their Web sites some sizzle. Flash is used in online greeting cards, music videos, art museum installations, even the intro to the Rosie O’Donnell TV show. 

Much of that corporate money is harder to come by nowadays, but Flash artists are still out there, trying to revolutionize art, cartoons and online entertainment. 

“Some little broke artist with a computer, can dabble with art, music and movies now. That’s what’s happened,” said Joe Sparks, a former punk rocker and pioneering video game developer who dresses in black and wears his hair like Elvis. 

Sparks — who worked with entertainment site AtomShockwave.com — was laid off last summer like many other dot.commers, but not before making a big splash with “Radiskull and Devil Doll.” 

He whipped up the story as a demo and put the rock-n-roll toon — which he wrote, narrated, animated and composed — on a Web site, telling a few colleagues to check it out. 

Word spread and two weeks later Radiskull had 100,000 page views. His story line based on the pair of lovable demons was on its way to becoming an Internet hit. 

“I never got quite a visceral first reaction to anything I have ever done,” said Sparks, who created the breakthrough CD-ROM video games “Total Distortion” and “Spaceship Warlock” in the 1990s. 

Sparks says even he doesn’t quite understand the appeal of his 10-minute webisodes, in which Devil Doll rides a Harley too large for him, tries hard to be bad and smiles innocently when doing evil. 

“Joe has become kind of a cult hero for a lot of people,” said Scott Roesch, a vice president at AtomShockwave.com, which owns and makes ad revenue off Spark’s toon. 

In his apartment in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury neighborhood, Sparks works in a compact studio full of music mixers, computers and software manuals. He gets up to 50 e-mails a day from fans, as well as photos of their Radiskull and Devil Doll tattoos, Halloween costumes and children’s coloring sketches. 

The college students and cubicle dwellers who follow each webisode often recite lines from the show such as, “We’ll be back to kick it later.” In Japan, a company is planning to market hundreds of 10-inch stuffed Devil Dolls, candies and other merchandise. 

Flash toons create traffic for AtomShockwave.com. The Web entertainment spinoff of Macromedia now has about 45 employees, down from 170. But Roesch said the business is stabilizing as advertisers pay to reach subscribers who generate 18 million unique page views a month. 

“We have this kind of coffee break phenomenon where people take a break, watch a movie or animation and then go back to work,” Roesch said. 

Programmer Jonathan Gay began developing the product that would become Flash in 1993. He eventually sold his company, FutureWave, to Macromedia in 1996, where he still works. 

Flash has some depth as a multipurpose tool with its own programming language called Action Script, which developers use to improve features on corporate Web sites. Macromedia wants to market the software more toward those practical (translate: profitable) corporate uses, such as interactive online tours for car dealers. 

Meanwhile, Flash art has been recognized as its own category at South by Southwest and other film festivals, and there is an undercurrent of Flash artists determined to do their own, decidedly uncommercial thing. 

Sparks is gearing up this month to launch “Dickey and Jackie,” a toon exploring a simply drawn world of preschoolers against a backdrop of rock music. 

People may hate it — he won’t know until he puts it online for the world to see. Then again, popular appeal isn’t necessarily the point. 

“Hundreds of years ago, only kings could dabble in music and art,” said Sparks. “Now, there’s a lot of opportunity for people like me who are loners and like to chisel stuff out and share it with others.” 

Here’s a glimpse of two better-known Flash programmers: 

Name: Todd M. Rosenberg 

Location: New York City 

Site: http://www.oddtodd.com 

Specialty: Laid off by AtomShockwave last summer, Rosenberg created OddTodd, a Flash toon celebrating the life of a laid-off dot.commer. With more than a million hits and $10,000 donated to his tip jar, Todd had to return some of his unemployment benefits to the state of New York. 

What he does and why: “Somehow they know from watching a cartoon that others have had a tough time finding a job. ... Even if I get a job, I will keep the Web site and keep making cartoons.” 


Name: Joe Shields 

Location: Grand Rapids, Mich. 

Site: http://www.joecartoon.com/ 

Specialty: A former T-shirt designer and cartoonist, Shields sells advertising space and markets his toons and interactive games. Visitors can beat up Osama bin Laden and run cute frogs through a virtual blender. Shields — whose Humvee has splattered gerbils painted on the sides — is the master of road kill gimmicks, and the site is not for animal lovers. 

What he does and why: “Deep-seated anger over the loss of a puppy to Niagra Falls. His leash broke while I was joyously swinging him in a circular motion about my head. It was horrible ... I don’t wanna talk about it.”

Surfer improving after surgery for shark wounds

The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

STINSON BEACH – The surfer who was attacked by a shark at Stinson Beach was recovering over the weekend and talking about the toothy beast that nearly took him down for good. 

Speaking from his hospital bed Saturday, Lee Fontan, 24, of Bolinas, said he’s just glad to be alive. He spent much of the weekend watching World Cup soccer games on television and reflecting on the attack. 

“I saw the jaws of death ... right in front of my face,” he said. “I can’t believe he didn’t bite my hand off.” 

Fontan was in critical condition following the attack, but that was upgraded to fair on Sunday. He received 100 stitches during a one-and-a-half hour operation on his leg and shoulder. 

Fontan was attacked Friday about 300 feet off Stinson Beach, 20 miles northwest of San Francisco. He was plucked from his surfboard by a shark that witnesses said was about 15 feet long. 

Fontan told the San Francisco Chronicle that he never saw the shark coming until it was too late. 

“It grabbed me ... just like a freshwater bass will grab a frog,” Fontan said. Witnesses said the shark lifted Fontan high out of the water in its jaws. 

He plans to resume surfing once he fully recovers. 

Another shark attack occurred Friday when a shark bit the foot of a teen-ager swimming about 200 feet off Florida’s St. George Island, police said. 

The 16-year-old boy underwent three hours of surgery after attack and was recovering well, said Jay Abbott, chief of St. George Island Fire and Rescue. 

The boy was vacationing on the island with his family. He was released from a Panama City hospital Saturday, but his name was not released.

Turnout for AIDS Ride suffers

By Olga R. Rodriguez, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO – Organizers of the California AIDS Ride said Saturday that a competing ride and a lawsuit claiming the event doesn’t give enough of its proceeds to research have cut by half the number of participants in this year’s trek. 

About 1,200 people have signed up for the grueling seven-day ride between San Francisco and Los Angeles along Highway 1, and organizers said they expect about two thirds of those will actually embark Sunday on the 575-mile trek. Last year, the AIDS Ride attracted 2,600 participants. 

One reason for the low turnout is that some riders participated in the AIDS/LifeCycle Ride, which took place two weeks ago, according to Craig E. Thompson, an AIDS Ride organizer and executive director of AIDS Project Los Angeles. 

“There is this group of ... people who do rides and now we have forced them to make a choice,” Thompson said. “We have forced a division, and that’s unfortunate.” 

The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation organized the LifeCycle Ride after claiming that not enough funds are going toward their programs. 

In 2000, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation received 65 cents of every dollar raised. Last year, spokesman Gustavo Suarez said, that went down to about 50 cents. Expenses generally should not exceed 35 cents per dollar, according to the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance. 

A lawsuit filed by a Berkeley bicyclist in April made a similar claim that AIDS Ride organizers were taking too much of the money they raised. 

Mark Cloutier sued Los Angeles-based Pallotta Teamworks, alleging the AIDS Ride organizer has misrepresented and mismanaged the amount of money distributed to nonprofit agencies for research. Cloutier said Pallotta delivered less than one-third of the $28 million it received from its 2000 and 2001 Vaccine Rides to charities that conduct AIDS vaccine research.

Ravenswood school district in hot water

The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO – The Ravenswood school district is under fire from the state for its failure to improve its special education and the unethical behavior of some of its administrators. 

The California Department of Education wants to take over Ravenswood school district because, it says, its administrators have failed to serve disabled children. 

The state filed a takeover plan Friday that says it would appoint an administrator to replace the superintendent and the locally elected school board, the San Jose Mercury News reported. 

The state-appointed administrator would serve for two years and under his or her tenure progress reports would be submitted to the every three months. 

The Ravenswood school district, which serves East Palo Alto and eastern Menlo Park, has been sued for its poor record in serving children with disabilities and last year a judge found it in contempt of a federal court order. 

U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson gave its administrators a final chance to prove their competence before ordering a takeover. He also ordered the district to pay a $10,000 fine and to reimburse lawyers representing disabled students. 

Henderson will hold an evidentiary hearing on June 18 to determine the school district’s progress and to decide whether a state takeover should take place 

But report cards by a court-appointed monitor reveal Ravenswood has not made much improvement and now, one of its principals is under scrutiny for allegedly submitting bogus petitions to a federal court. 

In December, the district suspended Costano School Principal Marthelia Hargrove for her role in submitting signatures collected for other matters and turning them in under a new heading related to the special education case. 

Earlier this week, Superintendent Charlie Mae Knight submitted a sworn statement to the court saying the school board is “pursuing the dismissal” of Hargrove. 

Hargrove has denied any involvement with the fraudulent petitions.

State officials try to create new educational roadmap

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

SACRAMENTO – It was nearly 40 years ago that California set a national trend by creating a comprehensive Master Plan for Higher Education, a blueprint for the state’s public universities and community colleges. 

Now, state officials again are in the spotlight as they attempt to expand that plan to include preschool through high school. 

The ambitious and unprecedented project started in 1999 after the state Legislature created the Joint Committee for Master Planning, which is made up of nine senators and 10 assemblymembers. 

Now, the plan is almost complete and a rough draft was released in May. The final version is expected in August. 

The plan will serve as a roadmap for students as they enter preschool and make their way through college. It comes with recommendations that the Legislature will implement in coming years to try to unite the fragmented and troubled educational system. 

It will also try to smooth the transition for students as they leave high school and go to college or enter the work force. 

Navigating students through to higher education is hardly a new idea, says Patrick Callan, president of the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education. 

“There’s a big effort going on in the country to close the gap between the various levels of education to make the transition for students better,” Callan said. “Different states have different strategies for how to do that.” 

Florida tackled the problem by consolidating all public education — schools, colleges and universities — under a single state board of education. 

More than a dozen other states already have K-16 councils. Maryland has set up a voluntary statewide council and Georgia is on its way to creating a mandatory council. 

Lora Weber, spokeswoman for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, said the Legislature has been trying for years to approve bills that would have combined the K-12 education department with the Higher Education Board. 

“We’re always doing things in joint efforts. We have the (preschool) through 16 Council, but it’s really just an ad hoc group,” Weber said. 

Stephan Blake, chief consultant for the joint committee, said the Legislature decided to redraft the plan to coordinate the attempts at education reform, which up until now have been disjointed efforts to improve only parts of the education system at any given time. 

“We really have been operating without any kind of vision or framework,” Blake said. “The higher education Master Plan not only laid out a framework that led to our success, but it also gave great stability to the policy arena, whereas there is no stability around K-12 policies.” 

The preliminary plan recommends a number of changes to the current system. In the initial phase of a child’s education, the plan suggests requiring full-day kindergarten classes and universal access to preschool. The plan also suggests increasing funding to screen children for developmental disabilities before they become barriers to learning. 

On the other end, as students prepare for college, it suggests creating a standard high school curriculum and coordinating it with the requirements to get into college. 

Other states, like Oregon, are also pushing to require public institutions to accept high school exit examinations in place of standardized assessment tests. 

At the state level, the plan says changing the education governance structure is necessary. It recommends making the Department of Education part of the governor’s cabinet. 

“We think that if we are going to have meaningful accountability we need to make changes in the alignment of the authority,” Blake said. 

The rough draft is the product of years of working with California educators, parents, education experts and business leaders to design a blueprint that state officials can work with, Blake said. Now that they have a working plan, they are asking for public input. 

Starting Monday, the committee will operate a two-week online forum, where people can discuss the various elements of the plan with the educators, business leaders and state officials who developed it. They will also hold hearings around the state this summer. The committee will make changes based on those comments. 

And when the time comes to adopt the final project, the committee expects education experts across the nation to be watching. 

“California is usually ahead of the curve on taking on these issues,” said Gordon Vanderwater, a researcher for the Education Commission of the States. “Everyone is going to be very interested. 

“But California is so big that other states may have a hard time relating,” he added. “California faces immigration issues, language barriers, diversity and urban issues. These issues aren’t unique, because other states face them too, but not on such a grand scale.” 

Whether the plan will improve the California education system is up to the politicians, according to Lance Izumi, director of the Pacific Research Institute’s Center for School Reform. 

“It’s a massive, massive plan,” Izumi said. “If the committees and Legislature get bogged down in minutia, it’s going to be overwhelming.” 

“This thing can be a reform document or something that just tinkers at the edges,” he said. “It’s up to the Legislature as to what kind of document they want to lead them in the coming decades.”

Disabled climbing team reaches top of Mt. Shasta

By Jim Wasserman, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

SACRAMENTO – A four-member disabled climbing team made history early Saturday, becoming the first paraplegic climbers to reach the 14,162-foot summit of northern California’s Mt. Shasta. 

The team of climbers, each disabled in previous skiing, car and climbing accidents, reached the snowcapped peak Saturday morning, said climber Muffy Davis, 29, of Sun Valley, Idaho. 

“We’re there. We’re on the summit calling from Mt. Shasta. We are on top of the world, said Davis, a medal-winning member of the United States Disabled Ski Team. Davis suffered back injuries during a 1989 ski accident. 

“We’re still celebrating,” she said by cellular telephone from the summit. “Everyone is just high in general.” 

The group and its support team, 20 members in all, ascended the mountain during a seven-day, 4.5-mile climb using “snow pods,” hand-cranked machines similar to mini-tractors. On a web site devoted to the climb, members called their Shasta expedition “the largest paraplegic attempt ever organized in the history of mountaineering.” 

The machines, developed by Peter Rieke, 48, of Pasco, Wash., a disabled climber on the Shasta ascent and owner of Mobility Engineering, are expected to open mountaineering to more climbers with disabilities. 

Rieke, who broke his neck and back during a 1994 climb, developed the snow pods with help of friends over six years. In 1998, he ascended Oregon’s 11,240-foot Mount Hood. 

Other climbers to reach the top of Mt. Shasta on Saturday included Mark Wellman, who has climbed El Capitan and Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, and Keegan Reilly, who reached the summit of Colorado’s 14,433-foot Mt. Elbert last summer. 

Davis said the team began its final ascent at 7 a.m. Saturday. The climbers, who carried messages of support from around the world, spent the night about 1,200 feet below the mountaintop.

Therapeutic cloning trials show promise in cows

By Paul Elias, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

Animal implanted with cloned cells hasn’t rejected new tissue; process could make organ transplants much easier 


SAN FRANCISCO – A cow implanted with cells taken from a cloned embryo didn’t reject the tissue, showing the potential of much-debated therapeutic cloning, researchers say. 

Cloning technology is controversial and opposed by many, including President Bush and Pope John Paul II, because it requires creating and destroying embryos. 

However, some scientists who oppose cloning humans say they believe therapeutic cloning should be pursued because it could supply healthy new tissue to fix a variety of illnesses. 

“While more work needs to be done, this demonstrates the potential use of this technology,” said Dr. Anthony Atala, director of tissue engineering at Children’s Hospital Boston and a co-author of the study published in the June issue of Nature Biotechnology. 

Using healthy cells cloned with the same DNA of a patient could make difficult organ and tissue transplants much easier, Atala said. 

In the study, researchers removed the nucleus from a cow egg and replaced it with a skin cell containing DNA from another cow. They then implanted the cloned embryo into a surrogate cow and let the embryo grow for about six weeks before removing it. They removed heart, skeletal and kidney cells from the embryo, grew them further in the laboratory — even creating mini kidneys — and implanted the cloned cells into the cow that donated the DNA. 

They removed the cloned cells after six weeks and found all were thriving. Another cloned set of cells was implanted into the same cow and were found to be functional after 12 weeks. Some of the mini kidneys even produced a urine-like liquid, the researchers said. 

“It was pretty spectacular and beautiful,” said co-author Dr. Robert Lanza of Worcester, Mass.-based Advanced Cell Technology. 

While still far from human use, experts say the latest advance demonstrates the disease-fighting potential of the method. 

“It’s a very important result,” said Robert Nerem, director of the Georgia Tech/Emory Center for the Engineering of Living Tissues. “Immune rejection is a very big problem in tissue engineering.” 

The report comes three months after other scientists used therapeutic cloning to fix genetic illness in mice. 

But the fact that an embryo was grown for six weeks in a surrogate instead of a test tube concerned even some therapeutic cloning proponents. 

“While the research in animal models shows that it may be possible to use cloning to generate tissues and eliminate tissue rejection, it’s important for the American public to understand that the methods used in this animal experiment should not be pursued in humans,” said Christopher Reeve, the actor who has become a patient advocate since being paralyzed in a horse riding accident. 

“Research involving the implantation of a human embryo into a woman, even to derive lifesaving cells, crosses a very important line and we need to pass legislation that would prohibit it,” he said. 

The authors of the paper said they too are opposed to recreating the experiment in humans. 

“We think it is ethically unacceptable to implant a cloned embryo in a woman for any purpose,” Lanza said. 

There are three competing bills pending in the Senate that address the issue of human cloning. One would ban all forms of cloning, while the others would outlaw cloning to create a baby but allow the technology for use in finding disease cures as long as the embryos were destroyed after a few days and never implanted in women. 

“The timing of this study could not have come at a better time,” said Arthur Caplan, a University of Pennsylvania bioethicist who supports therapeutic cloning.

New bill seeks to raise state smoking age to 21

By Andrew Bridges, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

xLOS ANGELES – A lawmaker planned to unveil a bill Monday that would raise California’s smoking age from 18 to 21, making it the highest in the nation. 

The bill would make it illegal for anyone under 21 to purchase tobacco products, including cigarettes, in the state. All 50 states set a minimum age of at least 18 following a 1992 directive from Congress. In three states — Alabama, Alaska and Utah — the legal age is 19. 

State Assemblyman Paul Koretz, D-West Hollywood, said the goal is to cut smoking rates among kids in their teens, the age when most smokers pick up the habit. 

More than 400,000 deaths each year in the U.S. are attributable to tobacco-related causes, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The American Lung Association estimates about 90 percent of all smokers begin smoking before the age of 21. 

“Our highest calling is to do things that save lives and the best way to prevent smoking deaths is to prevent people from becoming addicted to tobacco in the first place. My bill is the best way to do that,” Koretz said. 

The move follows a February vote by the California Medical Association to push for the change in state law. 

Dr. Leonard Klay, a Santa Rosa obstetrician and gynecologist who introduced the measure at the association’s annual meeting, said a higher smoking age, along with peer pressure and the taxes that make cigarettes unaffordable for many teens, should cut smoking rates. 

“If you’re smoking by age 21, it’s very difficult to quit,” said Klay, 64, who smoked for more than dozen years after beginning at age 19. 

The American Lung Association initially was cool to the medical group’s proposal, saying it preferred to concentrate on enforcing current tobacco-related laws. 

On Friday, however, Paul Knepprath, a lobbyist for the American Lung Association of California, said the group would support the proposed legislation, despite what he called a lack of evidence that a hike in the minimum age would reduce youth smoking. 

Anti-smoking activists fear the bill could derail other tobacco-related legislative efforts, including continued pushes to boost taxes on cigarettes. 

Gov. Gray Davis has proposed tacking 50 cents on each pack of cigarettes to help close an expected $23.6 billion budget shortfall. The Lung Association and others are pushing to add an additional 15 cents on top of that to go to anti-smoking efforts. 

Brendan McCormick, a spokesman for Philip Morris USA, the nation’s largest tobacco company, said the company believes a better approach to curbing youth smoking is enforcement of existing laws, but that it would remain neutral on the bill. 

“We will be guided by whatever society says the minimum age should be for tobacco products,” McCormick said. 

University of Southern California student Rob Mariano, 21, said he didn’t think tighter access would prevent young people from smoking. 

“They can try all they want, but kids are going to find ways to get cigarettes,” said Mariano, who began smoking at 14. Mariano said he bought cigarettes from stores that didn’t ask for identification or had older friends buy them. 

Because the deadline for introducing new bills has passed, Koretz planned to amend an existing tobacco-related bill to seek the change in state law. 

That bill, AB 1453, would also ban ashtrays where it is illegal to smoke, require them in designated smoking areas and restrict the distribution of free tobacco samples. It has been stalled in the state Senate for the past year.

A Legislative Mourning

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Educators, administrators weigh demise of teacher’s textbook bill 


Local education leaders had mixed reactions to the death of state legislation that would have granted teachers more power over the selection of textbooks and curriculum. 

State Assemblywoman Jackie Goldberg, D-Los Angeles, author of AB 2160, withdrew the bill Thursday night when it became clear that it did not have enough support in the Legislature. This move effectively killed any possibility of its passage this session. 

Originally AB 2160 would have allowed teachers, who can only bargain for wages, benefits and salaries, to negotiate the processes for selecting textbooks and curriculum. 

Supporters said the measure was necessary to ensure a teacher’s voice in vital classroom issues. Opponents argued that these issues should not be discussed in the adversarial arena of contract negotiations and suggested that the bill, supported by the California Teachers Association, was simply a union power grab. 

In the face of strong opposition, Goldberg watered down the bill substantially, calling instead for “academic partnerships” between school districts and union representatives to discuss textbooks and curriculum and make recommendations to local school boards. Opponents said the bill still created an adversarial relationship. 

As she withdrew the legislation, Goldberg blasted opponents for distorting “the goals of AB 2160” and vowed to continue the fight in the future. 

“This is not over,” she said. “Teachers are professionals and must be leaders in academic reform.” 

Local reaction Berkeley Board of Education member Ted Schultz welcomed the demise of the bill. 

“I think that’s good,” he said. 

Schultz said the legislation in its final form was unnecessary in Berkeley because the district does a good job of incorporating teachers’ input. 

“In general teachers’ opinions are well-respected,” said Barry Fike, president of the Berkeley Federation of Teachers. 

But Fike raised concerns about the board’s 3-2 vote two weeks ago to pass a resolution opposing AB 2160. 

“It raises some troubling questions,” Fike said, arguing that the vote sends a message to teachers that their voices may no longer be valued. 

The board majority refuted that notion at the school board meeting when it cast the vote. 

“We strongly believe teachers should be active participants in all these processes,” said board Vice President Joaquin Rivera, who spearheaded the May 22 resolution. “The issue is not teacher participation. The issue is what is the proper forum for participation.” 

Schultz said he opposed the bill in its original form because it would have added to the costs of contract negotiations and provided unions with another bargaining chip, delaying the process. 

Schultz echoed an argument made by board President Shirley Issel, who said during the May 22 board meeting that the Berkeley Federation of Teachers had held up negotiations over the school calendar and could be expected to do the same with the curriculum and textbook issues. 

“They could hold up textbook issues for a year, just to get a two-tenths of a percent wage increase or something,” Schultz said. “It’s ridiculous.” 

But Fike said unions would not hold up negotiations over an issue like textbooks because the tactic would only backfire. He also argued that it is, in fact, the Berkeley Unified School District that has held up school schedule negotiations in recent years. 

“This year we had our calendar proposal to the district and waited over two months for a response from them,” Fike said. 

Board member John Selawsky, who voted against the May 22 resolution, said he was disappointed in the death of AB 2160 in its latest form. 

“I think that it was a good compromise and workable,” he said. 

Fike said that the bill sparked an important conversation, even if it did not pass. 

“It’s gotten people’s attention that teachers’ voices are important,” he said. 




The Berkeley Hills were once dotted with dairies

By Susan Cerny
Saturday June 01, 2002

What would become Berkeley, was once a rural unincorporated part of the Oakland Township. It was sparely populated and mostly used for farming. The photograph shows grassy hillsides and scattered native oaks. The highest spot is Grizzly Peak, which was made level for communication towers. The Eucalyptus trees have not yet been planted. 

In 1858 on the advice of Reverend Henry Durant, who would become the first president of the University of California, the non-sectarian private College of California selected property on the north side of Strawberry Creek, at the foot of the hills, for a new campus. The site chosen lay directly opposite the Golden Gate. The name Berkeley was given to the area in 1866. 

The college was then located in Oakland, and a site was sought that was away from the distractions of city life, but not isolated. S. H. Willey, one of the trustees of the College stated that "it is a matter of the highest importance that a College should be rightly located."  

Although a state university was provided for in the State Constitution in 1849, it was almost two decades before a university was actually established. Using an endowment provided for by the 1862 Land Grant Act, which had been signed by Abraham Lincoln, the State Legislature passed an act in 1866 to establish an agricultural, mining and mechanical college. It was to be located in San Francisco with an experimental farm about two miles north of the College of California property in Berkeley.  

The University of California was finally formally created in1868 when the state accepted a donation from the Trustees of the College of California of their Oakland and Berkeley property. The newly created state university now also included an Academic College. When the University began instruction in the fall of 1869 it had 40 students and ten faculty members. The Berkeley campus opened in 1873.  

By 1890 the university had grown large enough a botanical garden was established " to form a living collection of the native trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants of the State of California, with the intent to gather in as rapidly as possible those the neighboring states of the Pacific Coast." Comprising only 7 acres on the central campus, the collection grew quickly and in the 1920s was moved to 34 acres in Strawberry Canyon approximately where the Such Ranch was once located.  

The landscape design was by J. W. Cregg, of the Department of Landscape Design, who organized the plantings according to their geographical location. The Botanical Garden is open from 9-5 every day and is an enticing world of winding pathways, trickling brooks and ponds, and of course a profusion of plant material from desert cacti to water plants.  

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

Why is it easier to locate a communist than a terrorist?

George Kauffman.
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

How come we could find communists but not terrorists? The house "UnAmerica committee" knew where they all were during the cold war, but come 9/11 there has been no House "Unterrorist Committee".  

Thank you, 

George Kauffman. 

Out & About Calendar

Saturday June 01, 2002

Saturday, June 1


Folk Festival Meeting 

All musicians, artists and others interested in volunteering are invited to a general meeting 

3 p.m. 

City Hall Building, 6th Floor 

2180 Milvia Street 

Wheelchair accessible 

649-1423, halih@yahoo.com 


Growing Food in the City 

An afternoon talk with Daniel Miller 

Discussion about releasing the bounty of your backyard, organically and sustainably 

1 to 4 p.m. 

Ecology Center 

2530 San Pablo at Dwight 

548-2220 x233 



50th anniversary of the Little Train at Tilden Regional Park 

Grizzly Peak Boulevard and Lomas Cantadas in Berkeley 

For more information, call 544-2200 


Sand Castle and Sand Sculpture Contest 

9 a.m. for participants registration 

9- 12 p.m. (Judging starts at noon) 

Crown Beach, Otis and Shore Line Drives 


For more information, call 521-6887 or 748-4565 



The Bluegrass Intentions 

Innovative traditionalists 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Friday, May 31



Paramount Movie Classics-  

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, 1958 

Doors at 7, Mighty Wurlitzer at 7:30, Newsreel, Cartoon, Previews, and Prize give-away game Dec-O-Win and feature Film 

2025 Broadway 




Blue Riders of the Purple Sage 

Classic cowboy harmonies 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Sunday, June 2


West Berkeley Open Air Craft Market 

Enjoy locally made crafts, food and beverages along with street performances by the Technomania Circus 

11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

4th and University 



Albany Food Fest and Music 

Enjoy a peaceful afternoon sampling food, listen to four live bands and a free eclectic art show 

Noon to 5 p.m. 

Memorial Park 

1325 Portland Avenue, Albany 

$20 in advance, $25 festival day 



Healing/Tibetan Yoga 

"Stimulating Healing and Renewal through Tibetan Yoga" 

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 




Ice Cream Social 

An annual school PTA fundraiser 

Includes a student talent show, auction, cake walk and field games 

Rosa Parks Elementary School 

Noon to 4 p.m. 



Diablo Symphony Orchestra 

Verdi Spectacular! 

Soloists: Lyric soprano Karen Anderson, soprano Aimee Puentes and tenor Min-sheng Yang. Conducted by Barbara Day Turner 

2 p.m. 

Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts 

1601 Civic Center at Locust Dr. 

Walnut Creek 

925-7469, website: www.dlrca.org 

Tickets $8, $15 and $18 


Casey Neill 

Celtic American folk roots 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Native Californian Cultures - Family Day 

Sunday, June 2, 1:30 PM- 3:30 PM  

Hearst Museum Courtyard 

Storytelling, children's games and basketry 

with Julia and Lucy Parker. Julia Parker, a cultural  

interpreter, supervises the Indian Cultural Program  

in Yosemite. Lucy Parker is a traditional artist who 

crafts jewelry and baskets as well as games. 

The Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology 

Kroeber Hall at the corner of Bancroft Way and College 

The phone number is (510) 643-7648. 

Admission is $2 for adults, $1 for seniors, and $.50 for  

16 and under- Free to the public on Thursdays. 


Monday, June 3


Poetry Express - Theme Night: "love and marriage" 

7-9 p.m. 

A community open mic welcoming all artists 

Berkeley Bakery & Cafe 

1561 Solano Avenue 



Thursday, June 6


Freedom From Tobacco 

A quit smoking class 

5:30-7:30 Thursday Evenings, June 6-July 18 

South Berkeley Senior Center 

2939 Ellis Street, (510) 981-5330 



Spencer Bohren 

New Orleans Bluesman 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Big Brother is Watching 

Speaker James Bamford, author of "Body of Secrets, anatomy of Ultra-Secret National Security Agency" 

6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 

The Independent Institute 

100 Swan Way, Oakland 

RSVP 632-1366 

Cost: $35 includes the book, $14 lecture only, $10 members. 


Friday, June 7


Fundraiser for Commond Ground  

Featuring Julia Butterfly Hill, a renowned and inspirational environmental activist  

7 p.m. 

St. Joseph The Worker School 

On the corner of Addison, b/w California and McGee 

$7 students, $12 everyone else 



What Does It Mean To Be Human? 

Debate between Princeton Professor and author Peter Singer and Chairman for Center for Bioethics & Culture, Nigel M. de S. Cameron. Moderated by host of KQED Forum, Michael Krasny 

Calvin Simmons Theater / Henry J. Kaiser Auditorium 

10 Tenth Street, Oakland 

Register online at www.thecbc.org  

$25 in advance, $45 at the door 


Friday & Saturday, June 7 & 8


Cats & Jammers 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


June 8-9


Live Oak Park Fair 

Original fine crafts & art, tasty food, live entertainment including: Splash Circus, The Prescott Clowns, Jean-Paul Valjean (circus performance), Fat Chance Bellydance, Urban Harmony, Johnny Casino (children's lounge lizard), Zappo the Magician, with M.C. Wavy Gravy. Benefit for Camp Winnarainbow. 

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Live Oak Park 

Shattuck & Berryman 

Further information: 898-3282 

Free Admission 


Sunday, June 9



"Listening to Her Voice" 

Join Miki Raver in Sacred Circle to study Scripture, pray, dance, meditate and write for the soul's delight, and to connect with your foremothers and the feminine divine within. 

1 to 5 p.m. 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Street 

848-0237 x127 

$30/public, $25 BRJCC and members of co-sponsoring organizations 



Tibetan Nyingma Institute Open House 

Introduction to Tibetan Buddhist Culture 

3 to 5 p.m. 

Erika Rosenberg and Abbe Blum on "Creativity and Emotion" 

6 p.m. to 7 p.m. 

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 




Traditional Persian Music Concert  

Hossein Alizadeh and Madjid Khaladj 

Julia Morgan Theatre, 2640 College Avenue, Berkeley 

7:30 PM 


925-798-1300, www.theatrebayarea.org. 


Austin Lounge Lizards 

Unbashed Texas Lunacy 

5 p.m. & 8 p.m. shows 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


JUNE 9-12


The 2nd Annual California Bluegrass Association MUSIC CAMP 

Nevada County Fairgrounds, GRASS VALLEY, CA  


Banjo-- Pete Wreck and Avram Siegel, Fiddle-- Laurie Lewis and Jack Tuttle, Mandolin--John Reischman and Tom Rozum, Guitar-- Jim Nunally and Dix Bruce, Dobro-- Sally van Meter Bass--Trisha Gagnon, Old-time fiddle-- Bruce Molsky, Old-time, guitar-- Tom Sauber, Old-time banjo-- Evie Ladin, Autoharp-Ray Frank 

Beginner and intermediate instrumental classes; jam classes; electives including vocal harmonies, music theory, band rhythm, critical listening, clogging, and more! 



Monday, June 10


Poetry Express - All Open Mike Night 

7 to 9 p.m. 

A community open mike welcoming all artists 

Berkeley Bakery & Cafe 

1561 Solano Avenue 



"All Grown Grown Up: Living Happily Ever With Your Adult Children" 

Author Roberta Maisel leads the mid-life parent through a series of thoughtful steps inherent in the process of learning how to let go. 

7 to 8:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Street 

848-0237 x127 



Thursday,June 13 

Jack Ball Retirement Party 

King Middle School PE teacher’s retirement 

5pm, at Tilden’s Brazil room 

Former students, friends, faculty invited 

$48 for dinner, $20 for desert 

Focus on the feminine in "Women in the Garden”

By Jennifer Dix, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

Continuing this season’s focus on women, the Berkeley Opera presented Vivian Fine’s 1978 chamber opera “The Women in the Garden” last weekend. 

This intensely personal feminist work imagines four women artists--writers Gertrude Stein, Emily Dickinson, and Virginia Woolf, and dancer Isadora Duncan--meeting in a garden, where they discuss their life, work, and philosophy. 

Fine was a prolific composer with a long career ending with her death in 2000. Her daughter, Peggy Karp, and granddaughter, Keli Fine, both now live in the Bay Area. For this production, they joined with stage director Melissa Weaver to write a short theatrical introduction to the opera. It depicted Fine (Amanda Moody) walking in her garden with her young granddaughter (Cecily Khuner), looking at what Fine calls “some of my favorite flowers.” Each represents one of the four opera characters, and Fine instructs her grandchild to learn from their lives. 

The 75-minute opera followed, with each character introducing herself. Although successive scenes include duets, trios, and quartets, there is actually little interaction among the singers. Most of the time, each seems preoccupied with her own thoughts and dreams. The exception is Gertrude Stein (Jennifer Palmer Boesing), who brings humor and warmth to even the most abstract aphorisms, engaging at times with the one male character (tenor Stephen Rumph), who acts as a sort of Everyman in this female world. 

“Women” is a highly cerebral work, not terribly accessible as operas go. There is no dramatic action to speak of. What little interaction takes place is fleeting and inconclusive. Most of the time, the four women muse on philosophy or comment on their own lives in a libretto drawn from their writings. The Berkeley Opera program contained much-needed notes and descriptions of each scene, written by the composer and Judith Jamieson, without which the opera would probably have been incomprehensible. 

It is the music that gives the piece form and coherence. Fine experimented through her life with modernism, atonality, and many of the innovations of 20th-century music, but her later music embraced harmony and counterpoint as well. “Women” is filled with beautiful interweaving melodies, from a lovely, melancholy soprano and flute duet to a moving harmonic quartet in which Duncan laments the death of her children and the other women gather to comfort her. There is an abundance of musical wit and delight, as well. Stein and the Tenor engage in a musical debate on human nature that is a virtuosi duet of humorous counterpoint and rhythm. 

The nine-piece orchestra directed by Lisa Riley was in fine form, and the five singers all demonstrated considerable talent and ease with the challenging score. Narelle Yeo was a sweet-voiced Dickinson, Lanier McNab a suitably dramatic Duncan, and Melissa Xanthe Stevens was prim in the role of Virginia Woolf. Rumph, a Berkeley Opera regular, displayed a warm and appealing tenor voice. Most rewarding to hear was Boesing in the character of Stein. A strong and expressive mezzo-soprano, she admirably fulfilled her role as the narrator who holds the whole work together, both musically (her repeated aphorisms serving as leitmotifs) and dramatically. It is Stein who joins the Tenor in friendship at the conclusion of the opera, suggesting a resolution to male-female conflict. 

This production was held at the Hillside Club, whose tiny space was well suited to the intimate nature of the opera. Stage director Melissa Weaver made the most of the small room, with imaginative direction around a central “tree” hung with lights and draped in glittery chiffon, that served as the focal point for a theater-in-the-round presentation. The audience seating was unfortunate, however. Without bleachers or raised seats, anyone who was not lucky enough to be sitting in one of the front rows had to endure obscured views for most of the performance—disappointing after paying $30 a ticket. 

Berkeley Opera’s 2002 season theme is “Cherchez la Femme,” an examination of women from various perspectives. The season kicked off in February with “Cosi Fan Tutte,” Mozart’s comic opera about jealousy and romantic rivalry. 

The Opera returns to its usual space at the Julia Morgan Center later this summer. The season finale is a revival of local composer David Scott Marley’s opera “The Riot Grrrl on Mars,” inspired by Rossini’s “The Italian in Algiers,” opening July 19. For information, call (510) 841-1903 or check out the company’s website at www.berkeleyopera.com. 

California’s best youth tennis players face off this weekend at BTC

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Locals hoping to end SoCal dominance of big event 


California’s top youth tennis players will face off this weekend in a North vs. South showdown at the 29th Annual Maze Cup, to be held at the Berkeley Tennis Club. 

The Maze Cup switches between sites in Northern California and Southern California each year, and this weekend is the first time the Berkeley Tennis Club has hosted the event. 

Cal men’s tennis coach Peter Wright is the tournament chairman and was instrumental is luring the event to the BTC. Cup founder George Maze, Sr., was a longtime member of the club. 

“We’ve been trying to get it to the Berkeley Tennis Club for the last several years, because it’s an event that really belongs here,” Wright said. “This is one of the truly great tennis venues in the country.” 

The Maze Cup is made up of four divisions, with two competitors from each section in each division: boys’ and girls’ 16-year-olds and boys’ and girls’ 18-year olds. Each division will feature two singles matches and a doubles match, with the combined scores determining the overall winner in a Davis Cup format. Southern California has dominated the event, with 27 wins in 28 years. 

“There’s definitely a rivalry there, but unfortunately Southern California has dominated,” said Todd Mitchell, who coaches Sasha Podkolzina of the Northern California squad. “It would be bigger for Northern California to win than Southern California, just because they have won most years.” 

“Southern California is really the cradle of hardcourt tennis in this country,” event organizer Warren Daane said. “I think a lot of people don’t realize just how strong California is in tennis. I think this is the best event in junior tennis in the country.” 

The names that adorn the Cup are testament to the rich history of the event. Former participants include Pete Sampras, Michael Chang, Brad Gilbert and Lindsay Davenport. 

“You just have to look at the trophy and see who’s played to see what a big event this is,” Wright said. “It’s a virtual who’s who of pro tennis.” 

So while the players in this year’s tournament might not be featured on ESPN just yet, there’s a good chance fans might see the next Sampras or Davenport before they hit the big time. This year’s crop includes three players who are ranked in the top five nationally: Sasha Podkolzina and Pramod Dabir from Northern California and Doug Stewart from down south. 

“It’s a great level of tennis,” Wright said. “It’s just before they go off to college, and they’re blossoming as tennis players. It’s a good chance to see tomorrow’s stars today.” 

Admission is free, and Daane expects a capacity crowd of near 2,000 fans. The 16-year-olds start things off on Saturday with singles matches at 10:30 a.m., with the last matches of the day starting at 4 p.m. Sunday will be a morning affair, with matches starting at 9 a.m. There will be an awards ceremony at 1 p.m. to crown the winners.

EarthFirst! may drop unresolved chargesv

By Chris Nichols, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Judge considers lifting
gag order off federal jury


Attorneys for EarthFirst! activists Darryl Cherney and the late Judi Bari said at a federal court hearing Friday they would consider dropping unresolved charges against the FBI and the Oakland Police Department to expedite the filing of a judgment in the case.  

On June 12 jurors awarded the two activists $4.4 million for violations of First and Fourth Amendment rights by members of the FBI and OPD relating to the investigation of a car bombing that injured Cherney and Bari in 1990. The judgment, however, has not been entered into the court because jurors were undecided on several charges. 

The issue of a gag order placed on the jury by federal Judge Claudia Wilken was not resolved on Friday, though Wilken says she will consider reforming the order.  

Attorneys for the activists plan to file a motion of dismissal without prejudice on Monday relating to charges of Cherney’s false arrest after the bombing in 1990. The motion would pave the way for the appeals process to start but would not eliminate the plaintiff’s ability to revive the false arrest charges at a later date. 

Appeals are expected from both sides in the case but cannot be filed until a judgment is entered into court.  

Appeals are expected from both sides in the case but cannot be filed until a judgment is entered into court. According to Robert Bloom, a member of the plaintiff’s legal team, if the motion goes through on Monday, the judgment could be finalized a month from now. 

“It’s been 12 years now. We’d really like to see this get resolved,” Bloom said to Wilken at Friday’s hearing. 

Though the plaintiffs in the case had considered requesting a new trial for the unresolved charges, Wilken on Friday informed the court that she would not preside over a new trial until September 2003 due to prior scheduling commitments.  

Rather than wait, the plaintiffs will pursue a dismissal and said that attorneys for the defense may try to stall proceedings.  

After the hearing, Bloom touted as a delaying tactic FBI lead counsel Robert Sher’s requests to wait for court transcripts before replying to a potential motion from the plaintiffs. Sher said in court that the defense would not file an appeal until Sept. 1. 

“He wants to stall,” Bloom said. “They (the defense) want to do anything that prevents entry of a judgment. They’ll be stalling until the next century.”  

In court Sher argued that the transcripts would be essential to future proceedings. Sher said that he could not speed up responses to motions from the plaintiffs due to prior commitments. Wilken gave the defense two weeks to respond to a potential motion of dismissal from the plaintiffs, and said the defense’s timeline for issuing an appeal was not unreasonable. 

Options are being weighed by both sides. According to Cherney, the defense could offer to settle the case in exchange for an agreement not to bring the false arrest charges to a new trial. Or, more likely, each side will appeal charges and possibly proceed with a new trial once the appeals are settled. 

“There aren’t any real grounds for the defense to appeal although they have every right to and they probably will,” said Dennis Cunningham, lead counsel for the plaintiffs. “The notion though that they want to take three months before they appeal is ridiculous.” 

The plaintiffs want to keep pressure on the FBI and to shed light on what they consider extremely suspect practices of the federal bureau.  

Regarding the jury gag order, Wilken says reform may be an option. Lisa Sitkin, an attorney representing the Oakland Tribune and San Francisco Chronicle, argued that the current order was limiting. “There really should be no limit on what the jurors should be able to talk to the press about,” said Sitkin, speaking to Wilken in court. 

Wilken issued the order on June 12 to prevent jurors from speaking to the press about the trial because, as she said, such communication would interfere with pending issues in the case. 

Cunningham said the plaintiffs are in favor of lifting the gag order, though they did not file a motion to have the order lifted. Maria Bee, an attorney representing the defendants from the OPD, said she believed Wilken’s ruling should stand. 



old postcards provide views of the past

By Susan Cerny, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

The picture postcard became extremely popular during the first two decades of the 20th century and this era is often referred to as the “golden age of postcards.” Most postcards were published by companies that specialized in the printing of postcards and would usually depicted popular views of a town or important buildings. But during this period people also created their own postcards from a photograph of their home.  

The postcard pictured here shows the house at 1511 Edith St. shortly after it was completed in 1908. This area of north-central Berkeley was just being developed at that time and recently completed houses can be seen on the left-hand side of the card and in the background a house is under construction. 

The message on the back of the postcard is signed by L. T. Bailey and the number on the pillar of the front porch says 1511. From the 1908 Oakland-Berkeley Directory (available at the Berkeley History Museum) it was easy to discover that L.T. was Lottie T. Bailey, widow of Angelo, and that she lived in the house with Mark G., a student, Lloyd E. a train conductor, Edith C. a teacher, and Effie L. a nurse. Perhaps these were her children, but they may have been a combination of her children and relatives as it was common at the time for extended families to share a house together.  

The style of the house is a variation of the Colonial Revival, also known as Classic Box. The exterior treatment of the first floor is typical of a Classic Box with a recessed entry, window bay and narrow clapboard siding. However this house has an extremely tall and steeply-pitched gable roof which shelters a second story and is faced with unpainted brown shingles. In some examples the face of the gabled roof was treated with half-timbering as in a Tudor Revival. The style was quite popular between 1900 and 1910 in Berkeley and Oakland. 

These houses were most often built or adapted from house plans that could be ordered from companies such as Alladdin, Gordon-Van Tine, and Radford Homes. The 1910 Gordon-Van Tine catalogue proudly boasted that they “shipped wherever railroads go...we guarantee safe delivery and satisfaction...we save the home-builders of America over $1,000,000 a year.” 

Although popular styled houses such as 1511 Edith Street were not individually designed for a specific client or lot, they provided a comfortable and affordable house for the middle class. These types of vernacular structures, looked at from the prospective of cultural geography, social or economic history, contribute as physical artifacts to an understanding of how an average family lived almost one-hundred years ago. Today 1511 Edith Street remains standing proudly, little changed, and a type of home eagerly sought after by contemporary buyers.  


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

Monotheists are okay

Steve Geller
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

It's been the biggest laugh of the year, watching the political yelping about “under God.” 

Of course the court ruling was right: Such a slogan does affirm we are a nation of monotheists. 

Well, probably a large majority of us are monotheists, even Judaeo-Christians. Does that mean all of us have to pledge loyalty to the Bible? Must we tie national loyalty to any religious belief, even one as general as monotheism? Most of us do not want to be a theocracy like some of the Islamic countries, but some of us do like the idea of being a “Christian nation,” for example. 

Maybe a compromise solution is to amend the Constitution to say we are mostly monotheists, so references to “God” are legal but make it clear that other forms of belief are freely tolerated. The label “in God we trust” doesn’t harm our money. There are times when I want to sing “God bless America.” 

I suppose I can skip “under God” when I say the pledge – unless the FBI (Federal Bureau of the Inquisition) starts monitoring me for national religious compliance. 


Steve Geller 


California Theater reopens after renovations; Fine Arts Cinema closes its doors

By Peter Crimmins, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

Both theaters to show
special features to mark the events


If someone poked his head into the California Theater in downtown Berkeley earlier this week to look at the building undergoing seismic renovation, that person would have had to pass through heavy machinery blocking Kitteridge Street traffic, step over torn-up concrete on the sidewalk and seen ripped carpeting and paint tarps strewn over everything. It did not look like a showcase theater due to open in four days. 

Theater manager Dale Sophiea sitting in his small cluttered office on the second floor did not seem concerned by the mess. His theater was going to open, as scheduled, on Friday and it was going to look grand. Even if it takes lots of late nights. Amid the hard-hatted contractors with power tools and welding equipment were Sophiea’s floor staff of ticket-takers and concessions sellers painting the trimming. 

Walking through the theaters, Sophiea explained the new green paint job is a vast improvement to the “awful” old brown coat (an improvement that might not be noticed by moviegoers seated in the dark). The new green-and-gold color scheme, he said, will be nicely complimented by the new green floral-patterned carpeting, carpeting which was yet to be laid down. 

The cosmetic overhaul is a subsequent improvement during the building’s structural retrofitting. Outside are the external I-beams holding the brick building in a seismically sound iron cage. The earthquake safety upgrade does not affect the size or shape of the auditorium inside, which at 650 seats will still be the largest movie house in Berkeley. 

Until last year, the California Theater was the second-largest house in Berkeley, behind the UC Theater on University Avenue. Both theaters, owned by Landmark Theater Corporation (who also own the nearby Shattuck and Act1&2 theaters) were in need of expensive seismic improvements. The California was upgraded and the UC abandoned. The reasons for the loss of the seminal repertory theater are manifold, involving feasibility and return-on-investment. The future of the UC Theater as a cinema and the structural integrity of its large, acoustically-designed auditorium are in dispute between community groups, the owners of the building, and the city of Berkeley, but the chance of it returning to its former glory – a large house screening a calendar of daily rotated movie programming which local buffs held in so high esteem – seem slim. 

The California opens this weekend with a new, longer version of “Cinema Paradiso,” the romantic, nostalgic Italian film about a director remembering the theater in the village of his boyhood where he learned to love movies. It was a monster hit in 1988 (it won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film) and now has 51 more minutes of rural movie magic.  

Landmark wanted to open the California with “Men In Black II” but Sophiea said he pushed for “Cinema Paradiso” because “I wanted to open with something more poetic.” The film about space monsters with Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones opens at the California next Wednesday, and it will be business as usual. 

At the same time the California re-opens, a small but essential part of Berkeley cinema life is going away. A few blocks down Shattuck Avenue from the California is the independently owned Fine Arts Cinema, which for last four years has been screening bold programming of classics, rarities, art films, documentaries, shorts, and revived popular fare. This Sunday will be the last screening before it goes dark in anticipation of the building being razed and replaced. 

When it opened in 1998, the Fine Arts created the third point in the Berkeley film lover’s triangle, with the UC Theater and the Pacific Film Archive in the Berkeley Art Museum (since moved to campus near Bowditch Street). The UC screened new film-festival picks and older classics and the PFA tended toward serious international scholarship. The Fine Arts, rounding out the triptych, offered overlooked gems trolled from the tireless festival travels of co-owner Keith Arnold and inspired double-bills of the difficult and the fluffy: a Wisconsin love-in pairing “Straight Story,” David Lynch’s dark-edged pastoral story of a man and his lawnmower, with “American Movie” and its failure-proned savant Mark Borshardt; or the recent double-feature with Humphrey Bogart’s Nazi subversion in the ageless favorite “Casablanca” with a hypothetical Nazi defeat of England in the rarely seen “It Happened Here.”  

As the UC Theater proved, running a single-screen art-house theater is not easy. For four years the owners and operators of the Fine Arts Cinema – Keith Arnold, Emily Charles, and Josephine Scherer – worked their labor of love as programmers, projectionists, ticket sellers, janitors, popcorn-poppers and candy-bar stockers. Ticket sales were often so meager they would not cover the overhead.  

Even so, they are not giving up even as their theater is torn down. The landlord of the building to be built on the site, Patrick Kennedy (also owner of the new Gaia building downtown), has entered an agreement with the Fine Arts Cinema to include a 7,000 square foot theater in the new building, along with museum space for the Cinema Preservation Society, a non-profit organization tangentially associated with the Fine Arts Cinema. Like the financially troubled Roxie Theater in San Francisco, non-profit status may ease the difficulties of operating an independent art cinema. The new building is expected to be completed, and the theater re-opened, in 2004. In the meantime Arnold will be taking his movies on the road, screening at various pick-up locations in the Bay Area and abroad. 

For the next two years the East Bay’s discriminating moviegoers will have narrowed cinema options. Even as the Pacific Film Archive provides both challenging work (a series of Armenian documentaries this summer) and amusing classics (a month of Preston Sturges comedies in July) there will doubtless be a diaspora of die-hard film buffs toward the remaining rep-houses in San Francisco.  

For their final weekend, the Fine Arts Cinema is going out as they came in: with the beautifully animated 1926 silent film “The Adventures Of Prince Achmed” in which German filmmaker Lotte Reiniger uses wonderfully intricate paper cut-out silhouettes to tell a story of magic carpets and enchanted kingdoms. A new original score will be performed live by the Georges Lammam Ensemble. It’s the kind of cinema experience Berkeley has come to expect from the Fine Arts, and will be missed in their absence.  

Arts Calendar

Saturday June 01, 2002


Free Early Music Group 

Singers needed for small group of 15th and 16th century music every Friday 

10 a.m. 

North Berkeley Senior Center, Hearst at MLK Way. 

Contact Ann at 665-8863 


Saturday, July 13 

Barbara Dane 75th Birthday Concert 

7:30 p.m. 

Frieght and Salvage coffee house, 1111 Addison St. 

Jazz, blues, American folk from around the world 

548-1761 for ticket information 


Sunday, July 14 

Hal Stein Quartet  

4:30 p.m.  

Jazzschool, 2087 Addison Street € Berkeley 

845-5373, www.jazzschool.com 



Troy Lampkins Group 

4:30 p.m.  

Jazzschool 2087 Addison Street € Berkeley 

Groove-filled, groove-intense music 

845-5373, swing@jazzschool.com 



Thursday, July 25 

Midsummer Motzart  

Festival Orchestra 

8 p.m. 

First Congregational Church 

2345 Channing Way 

Divertimento in D, Piano concerto #17, Symphony #38 “Prague” 

(415) 292-9624 for tickets 



Saturday, August 3 

Bata Ketu 

8 p.m.  

Alice Arts Center, 1428 Alice St. 


Interplay of Cuban and Brazilian  

music and dance  




“Red Rivers Run Through Us”  

Until Aug. 11,  

Wed. - Sun.  

Noon to 5 p.m. 

Berkeley Art Center,  

1275 Walnut St. 

Art and writing from Maxine Hong Kingston's veterans' writing group 

Reception, 2 to 4 p.m.  



From the Attic: Preserving  

and Sharing our Past 

Until July 26, Thur.-Sat. 1 to 4 p.m. 

Veterans Memorial Building 

1931 Center St. 

Exhibit shows the 'inside' of museum work 




The Creation of People’s Park 

Through Aug. 31, Mon.-Thur. 9 to 9 p.m., Fri. 9 to 5 p.m., Sat. 1 to 5 p.m. Sun. 3 to 7 p.m. 

The Free Movement Speech Cafe  

UC Berkeley campus 

A photo exhibition, curated  

by Harold Adler 




Jan Wurm: Paintings and Drawings 

Mon. and Fri. 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tues.-Thurs. 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

Flora Hewlett Library at the Graduate Theological Union 

2400 Ridge Road 




Thursday, July 11 

“New Visions: Introductions 

'02” Reception 

Works from emerging Californian artists 

Reception, 6 to 8 p.m. Display up from July 3 to Aug. 10 

Pro Arts, 461 Ninth St. Oakland 




Saturday, July 20 

“First Anniversary  

Group Show”  

July 18 to Aug. 17 

Ardency Gallery, Aki Lot, 8th Street 

Reception, 5 to 8 p.m. 

13 local artists display work ranging from sculpture to mixed media 



Thursday, July 11 

“New Visions: Introductions  

‘02” Reception 

Works from emerging Californian artists 

Reception, 6 to 8 p.m. Display up from July 3 to Aug. 10 

Pro Arts, 461 Ninth St.  





Antony and Cleopatra 

Directed by Joy Meads 

June 15 to July 20,  

Thurs.-Fri. 8 p.m. 

La Vals Subterranean Theater  

1834 Euclid 

234-6046 for reservations 

$14 general, $10 student 


Abingdon Square  

Previews 16,18,19 at 8 p.m. Runs June 21 to July 6, Thurs. to Sat. 8 p.m. Sundays 7 p.m.  

Julia Morgan Theater for the Arts, 2640 College Ave. 

The Shotgun Players,  

directed by Shana Cooper 

704-8210 www.shotgunplayers.org 

$18 regular, $12 students, previews and Mondays - pay what you can. Opening Night $25\ 



July 5-Aug. 10, Sunday matinees  

July 14,21,28 Aug. 4 

Contra Costa Civic Theater,  

951 Pomona Ave. El Cerrito 

Directed by Andrew Gabel 

524-9132 for reservations 

$17 general, $10 for under 16 and under 


Midsummer Nights Dream 

Until June 29,  

Fri. and Sat. 8 p.m. 

Magical Acts Ritual Theater, directed by Catherine Pennington 

The Black Box,  

1928 Telegraph Ave., Oakland 

653-6637 for reservations 

$15 - $25 


Don Pasquale Opera 

July 13, 15, 17, 19 at 8 p.m.  

July 21 at 2 p.m. 

Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts, Walnut Creek 

From the Festival Opera  

Association, a comedy by  

Gaetano Donizetti about an arranged marriage 




July 18 to Aug. 18, Wed.-Sat. 8 p.m. Sun. 2 and 7 p.m. 

Previews: July 12-14 and 17 

Michael Frayn's comedy of two neighboring couple's interactions 

Aurora Theatre Company  

2081 Addison St. 

843-4822, www.auroratheater.org  

for reservations. $26 - $35  


The Shape of Things 

Sept. 13 to Oct. 20 

Aurora Theatre Company,  

2081 Addison St. 

Neil LaBute's love story  

about two students 

843-4822, www.auroratheater.org for reservations 

$26 - $35  


The Heidi Chronicles 

July 12 to Aug. 10 Fri. and Sat. 8 p.m. 

Live Oak Theater, 1301 Shattuck 

Actors Ensemble of Berkeley present Wendy Wasserstein’s play about change. 




A Thousand and One Arabian Nights 

July 12 to Sept. 28, Fri.-Sun. 8 p.m. Sun. 4 p.m. 

Forest Meadows Outdoor Amphitheater, Grand Avenue at the Dominican University, San Raphael 

Marin Shakespeare Company’s presents this classic story with original Arabic music. 

(415) 499-4488 for tickets 

$12, youth; $20 senior; $22 general 


Alarms and Excursions 

Nov. 15 to Dec. 22 

Aurora Theatre Company,  

2081 Addison St. 

Michael Frayn's comedy about the irony of modern technology 

843-4822, www.auroratheater.org for reservations 

$26 - $35  


Poetry Diversified 

1st and 3rd Tuesdays,  

7:30 to 9 p.m. 

World Ground Cafe,  

3726 Mac Arthur Blvd., Oakland 

Open mic and featured readers 


Wednesday, July 3 

Ghetto Girl Blue Speaks  

the Unspeakable 

10 p.m.  

Kimball’s Carnival in Jack London Square  

A street walker recalls her turbulent and highly sexual past through poetry. 

www.ipunany.com or www.urbanevents.com 


Boas Writing Group 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody's, 2454 Telegraph Ave. 

Stefani Barber, Jean Lieske  

and many more 




Saturday, July 6 

Bay Area Arts Coalition  

Poetry Reading 

3 to 5 p.m. 

West Berkeley Branch Library  

1125 University Ave. 



Wednesday, July 10 

Carmen Gimenez-Rosello,  

Dawn Trook 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody's, 2454 Telegraph Ave. 




Sunday, July 14 

M.L. Liebler and  

Country Joe McDonald 

Poetry and Music 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody's, 2454 Telegraph Ave. 




Wednesday, July 17 

Hannah Stein and Kevin Clark 

7:30 p.m. 

Cody's, 2454 Telegraph Ave. 

Authors of “Earthlight and In the Evening of No Warning.” 




Open Mike and Featured Poet 

7 to 9 P.M. First Thursdays and second Wednesdays each month  

Albany Library 1247 Marin Ave 

Thursday, July 11: Poets Tenesha Smith-Douglas and Judith Annenbaum. 

Second Wednesdays are a monthly Poetry Writing Workshop, led by Alison Seevak.  

526-3720 Ext. 19 



Friday and Saturday, July 5 and 6 

Brainwash Movie Festival 

9 p.m. 

Alliance for West Oakland Development Parking Lot, 1357 5th St. Across from W. Oakland BART 

Weird and unique short films and video festival 

(415) 273-1545 



Friday, July 5 

“Remember the Night”  

and “The Good Fairy” 

7:30 p.m. and 9:25 p.m., respectively. 

UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2575 Bancroft  

Preston Sturges' classic films 


Saturday, July 6 

“The Great McGinty” and  

“Christmas in July” 

McGinty at 4:30 and 8:30 p.m.; Christmas at 7 p.m. 

UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2575 Bancroft  

Preston Sturges' classic films 


Out & About Calendar

Saturday June 01, 2002

Saturday, June 29


Know Your Rights Training 

11 a.m.- 2 p.m. 

Copwatch Office 

2022 Blake St., Berkeley 

Learn what your rights are and how to observe the police effectively and safely; hosted by Copwatch. 

For more information: 548-0425 



Emergency Preparedness  

Classes in Berkeley 

9 a.m. to noon 

997 Cedar Street 

Disaster First Aid: Learn to apply  

basic first aid techniques. 



How to Travel with Children 

11 to noon 

East Bay's Premier Action Sports Store  

1440 San Pablo Ave. 

Lonely Planet's global travel editor, Don George will offer tips and advice. 




Save the Bay's East Bay  

Shoreline Bike Ride 


Ride with Save the Bay along this beautiful section of the 10-mile SF Bay Trail. 

452-9261 for info and reservations.  




Northern California Labor Conference on Democratic Rights 

9:30 to 4:00 p.m.  

Valley Life Science Building Room 2040 UC Berkeley 

One day conference is being organized to focus on the growing attack on labor rights since the "War On Terrorism" 



Garden Party for  

David Brower Day 

10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Two Strong Roots garden sites;  

on the corner of Sacramento and Woolsey, and Sacramento and  


Gardening for all ages,  

honey making,  

gardening workshops 

(415) 788-3666 



Meditation Seminar 

11 a.m. 

Rockridge Library,  

5366 College Ave.  


Thakar Singh's seminar 

(888) 297-1715 



David Brower Day 

10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Berkeley Farmers' Market 

Center Street at  

Martin Luther King, Jr. Way 



Stanford Jazz Festival,  

June 29-August 10 

10:30 a.m. kids 7 & under, 11:30 a.m.  

Kids 8-12, Campbell Recital Hall  

Stanford Campus  

Early Bird jazz for kids and families  

with Jim Nadel & Friends. 



Maybeck High School  

30th anniversary  

6 p.m. to 10 p.m.  

Piedmont Community Hall  

711 Highland Ave. Piedmont 

Call 841-8489 for reservations 


Kids are Street Safe Campaign 

10 a.m. to noon 

Neighborhood House of North Richmond, 305 Chesley Ave, Richmond 

Police, Richmond mayor,  

superintendent, youth directors speak  

on how to keep kids safe. 




Sunday, June 30


Celebration of the California Least  

Tern Nesting Season 

11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Crab Cove Visiting Center, Alameda 

Craft-making, slide show, visual displays,  

and a visit to the nesting colony 

Bus tour recommended for ages 6 and up, needs reservations. 

Reservations for tour: 521-6887 

General: Free; Tour: $6-$8 


Monday, July 1


“Children of AIDS” film 

6:30 p.m.  

Mama Bears Bookstore and Coffee house, 6536 Telegraph Avenue  

Presented by the National Organization  

for Women  

549-2970, 287-8948  



What You Need to Know  

Before You Remodel 

7 to 9 p.m. 

Building Education Center, 812 Page St. 

Discussion by builder Glen Kitzenberger 




Tuesday, July 2


Adopt A Special Kid (AASK) 

7 to 9 p.m. 

7700 Edgewater Drive, Suite 320  

Oakland.A workshop for singles or couples, gay and lesbian, experienced or older parents, interested in adoption. 

533-1747, ext. 12. 


Saturday, July 6


Capoeira Batizado 

2 to 6 p.m.  

Capoeira Arts Cafe 

2026 Addison, Berkeley 

A celebration of Capoeira with  

performances by local arts organization. 

For information: 666-1255 



Saturday, July 6 - 

Sunday, July 21


Marin Classic Theatre 

presents "Born Yesterday" 

8 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sunday matinee; 7 p.m. Sundays 

A bittersweet comedy by  

Garson Kanin. 

For information: 415-892-8551 or 


$18 evening performances,  

$15 matinee 


Thursday, July 11


Great Sierra Backpacking  


REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo  

Karen Najarian of Sierra Wilderness Seminars presents slides from her more that 20 years exploring the  

Sierra Backcountry. 

More information: 527-4140 



Saturday, July 13


Peach / Stone Fruit Tasting 

Tasting & cooking  


10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Berkeley Farmers' Market 

Center Street at Martin Luther King, Jr. Way 



15th Anniversary Derby Street  

Farmers Market 

Live music and & stone-fruit and peach tasting 

Tasting & cooking demonstrations. 

Berkeley Farmers' Market 

10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Derby Street at Martin Luther King, Jr. Way  



Festival of New Versions  

of Classic Asian Games 

Noon to 5 p.m 

Dr Comics and Mr Games,  

4014 Piedmont Ave., Oakland  

Dr Comics and Mr Games Hosts Game a festival featuring two new versions of classic Asian board games 



Sunday, July 14


Hands-on Bicycle Repair  

11 a.m. to noon 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

Learn from an REI bike technician  

basic bike repairs such as brake  

adjustments and fixing a flat. 

More information: 527-4140 



Family Health Day 

11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

4th and University Ave. 

Explore health concerns in a family  

oriented environment 



Tuesday, July 16


Berkeley Camera Club Weekly Meeting 

7:30 p.m. 

Northbrae Community Church,  

941 The Alameda 

Share slides, prints with  

other photographers 



Introduction to Accessible  

Software and Hardware  

10:30 a.m. to noon 

Berkeley Public Library Electronic Classroom, 2090 Kittredge Street 

RSVP to 981-6121- Alan Bern, Special Services Coordinator 


Wedneday, July 17


Doctors Without Borders 

(Through July 18) 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

UC Berkeley, Springer Gateway, West Entrance Crescent 

Interactive exhibit expalining medicines for people in developing countries; Film screenings 



Thursday, July 18


Mystique of the Widerness 

7 p.m. 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

Phil Arnot presents slides from over 50 years of exploring such places as Alaska, New Zealand, the Sierra and the Rockies. 

For more information: (510) 527-4140 


Introduction to Accessible  

Software and Hardware  

3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

Berkeley Public Library Electronic Classroom, 2090 Kittredge Street 

RSVP to 981-6121- Alan Bern,  

Special Services Coordinator 


vSaturday, July 20


Emergency Preparedness  

Classes in Berkeley 

Earthquake Retrofitting: Learn how to strengthen your wood frame home. 

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

812 Page Street 




Thursday, July 25


California Landscapes:  

A Geologist's Perspective 

7 p.m. 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

John Karachewski presents an educational slideshw on such amazing places as the Sierra Nevada, Coast Ranges the Great Valley and Cascades 

For more information: (510) 527- 4140. 



Saturday, July 27


Test Ride Kestrel Bicycles 

11 a.m.-1 p.m. 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

Preston Sandusky of Kestrel, a premier manufacturer of high-end, carbon-fiber road and mountain bikes, intrduces their latest design. 

For more information: (510) 527-4140 



"Neon: The Living Flame" 

7:00 p.m.  

Alameda Museum, 2324 Alameda Ave  

The Alameda Museum presents Michael Crowe, author, and neon artist Karl Hauser 

lecture by Michael Crowe 

748-0796 or 841-8489.  

Members free, non-members $5  


Sunday, July 28


Hands-on Bicycle Repair  

11 a.m.-12 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

Learn from an REI bike techician basic repairs such as brake adjustments and fixing a flat. 

For more information: (510) 527-4140 



Wednesday, July 31


Mountain Adventure Seminars:  

Introduction to Rock Climbing 

7 p.m.-9 p.m. 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

An introduction to rockclimbing including knot tieing, belaying and movement. 

For more information: (209) 753-6556 

$115 REI members; $125 non-members 


Saturday, August 3


Mountain Adventure Seminars: Introduction to Rock Climbing 

8 a.m.-3 p.m. 

REI Berkeley, 1338 San Pablo 

An introduction to rockclimbing including knot tieing, belaying and movement. 

For more information: (209) 753-6556 

$115 REI members; $125 non-members 


More than just basketball

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Dynasty Basketball helps
get players into the community


It’s 3 p.m. in West Berkeley, and there are a dozen restless 4-year-olds at the Oceanview YMCA Head Start Program. They do their best to sit still and listen to the story being read to them, but their eyes and minds wander around the room as sunlight leaks in through a couple of windows. 

The storyteller isn’t your usual preschool teacher: He’s about 6-foot-5 and barely fits in his junior-sized chair. He’s also 17 years old and sports cornrows. But Berkeley High rising senior K.K. Alexander doesn’t mind the reading time, as long as he eventually gets to stretch his legs. 

When Alexander finishes the story (something about Bugs Bunny, Yosemite Sam and a cannon), the preschoolers break out to the yard, complete with playstructure, foursquare court and picnic tables. But despite the playground equipment, the biggest attraction is Alexander and three of his fellow volunteers. The kids chase them, try to steal a basketball from their hands, and climb on them like jungle gyms. The young men are all exceptionally tall and athletic, and there’s a good reason for that: they’re the founding members of Dynasty Basketball. 

Started by El Cerrito High’s Jonathon Smith and his stepfather, Berkeley High graduate and Cal Hall of Famer Gene Ransom, Dynasty Basketball is an AAU summer team for promising high school ballers. They practice several times a week and have finished in the top two in all four tournaments they’ve entered this summer. Next month, they will jet off to Las Vegas for the Adidas Big Time Tournament, the most prestigious prep basketball event in the nation. At first glance, they’re just like most other AAU teams, a collection of some of the best players in the region who are hoping to make the leap to college ball. 

But Dynasty Basketball is about more than just basketball. Ransom, a former freshman coach at Berkeley High, made sure when he agreed to coach the team that the players would be committed to community service and hitting the books. Starting with Smith and boyhood friend Alexander, they recruited players from schools like St. Joseph, Kennedy, and Salesian to fill out the team.  

While the players may not be the kind of stars that recruiters gossip about, they all have a chance to move on to the next level, and Ransom wants to make sure they don’t miss out. 

“They asked me (to coach) because they knew I’m a coach that’s concerned with them as true student-athletes,” Ransom says. “My kids didn’t feel as if they were getting enough from their high schools. They know I’m about them, not about myself.” 

Ransom coached the freshman team at Berkeley High during the 2000-01 season, but decided to step away after his proposals for study programs and community service for the players fell on deaf ears. With the budget getting tighter every year at BHS, the support system for younger players can be lacking. In fact, with the newest set of budget cuts, the freshman team has been eliminated for the upcoming school year. 

So when Davis asked Ransom to help organize a team for him and his friends, Ransom jumped at the chance. While taking classes at the New College of California in San Francisco, he had written a proposal for a comprehensive program for high school athletes, complete with study sessions and community service as equal components with practice and games. Dynasty Basketball is the beginning stages of that vision. 

“These kids were overlooked, and now they’re getting a chance to show how good they are,” Ransom says. “A lot of AAU teams want to stack up with known star players.” 

For Smith and the other players, basketball is admittedly the main focus. But they enjoy their time at Head Start, sporting huge grins as they show off fancy dribbling moves and hoist kids over their shoulders. 

“We probably practice just as much as any other AAU team, and that’s important to us,” Smith says. “But when we’re not playing, we’re doing something as a group. This lets us do something constructive with our off-time, instead of just hanging around.” 

It’s hard to say who has more fun during playtime, the little kids or the big kids. Head Start Director Pam Shaw says having the players come in is the highlight of the preschoolers’ week, especially since the Head Start staff trained the players on how to interact with them. 

“The kids look so forward to seeing them,” Shaw says. “It has really escalated basketball to new high among four-year-olds. It’s something you don’t really see in most programs.” 

The team visits Head Start once a week, and they recently finished painting the Oceanview YMCA building. Later this summer, they will volunteer at homeless shelters, which Ransom thinks will give them some perspective on the importance of education. 

“I feel this stuff makes these kids realize basketball can only go so far,” Ransom says. “When I finished school and got into coaching, I started to see how the system can take advantage of athletes. When someone is done with you, they can just throw you away. These young men have to be ready for when they aren’t playing anymore.” 

Paula Gerstenblatt, mother to Smith and wife to Ransom, encouraged the two to get the program going and has been instrumental in fundraising efforts. She knew Ransom wouldn’t let the players just work on basketball all summer. 

“The team gives them an opportunity to experience things that they might normally miss at this age,” Gerstenblatt says. “If you can prod them out of their little world of basketball into other things, it can only help.” 



Russell Murrey 


Gene Ransom 841-7835 205-3395 

Tried at Berkeley High to start afterschool program, but it never materialized. So I went independent, started own AAU team.  

There are kids out there with just as much talent, just lack being taught basketball skills. 

They are role models, more than just players. Came up had a lot of mentors, nowadays lacking in positive mentors, just giving back what people have given to me over the years. 

Resources are there, what I came to find out is that some programs are not really fro the kids as far as building character, teaching them about life as much as basketball. 

Grad 75. Cal 75-78.  



Paula Gerstenblatt 741-1272 

agreed to coach the kids, group of parents got together, really team formed because of lack of this kind of program at HS level. What we wanted to do for our kids was provide a more nurturing experience for academic, athletic, social skills. Based on proposal Gene New College of California, proposed at BHS, plan to have kids reading and doing comm service. Used that as springboard assign book to read, do comm service as part of team requirement. Began just trying to put together team with schedule. Not familiar with AAU circuit. Fumbled way through dark. Fundraising for a fraction of costs. Garage sale, EC Honda donated money. Pooled money, four tournaments so far, taken second in three and first in one. SNJ spring league. Going to Vegas Big Time Tournament, Elite 8 at Cal. 

Impetus came from how a lot of athletes are not offered a full development. 2.0 effort on court would not be tolerated. What’s blossomed has been camaraderie and friendships. 20 years from now look around and see friends that came from this. Other piece is that really fortunate to have Doug Murray SJSU HOF and Gene. 

Head Start connection, some kids done comm service in their communities. Natural linkage to Berk/Alb Head Start. Gives them opp to experience things that they might miss at this age. If can prod them out of their little world of basketball into other things.  


Pam Shaw Berkeley Head Start director 848-9092. 925-457-7308 cell 

Fun having kids there that aren’t little kids. Takes them away from just being basketball players. Had to train them more about how to play with the kids, how to read stories. The kids really look up to them, literally and figuratively. 

Mutual benefits are incredible, and kids get a chance to run wild. Our kids need everything we can give them. 

Birth to five, preschool, thorugh Berk/Alb YMCA. Funded to serve close to 500 kids, now have 9 centers in east bay. focuses on kids and families, low income. Get kids ready for school. 

office used to be gym, Gene played basketball here. Fond feelings, working on whole child, natural progression, inclination to do work within community. 

Did apply for grant Youth Involvement, federal government, to expand program to target high school athletes. October. Try to work with coaches in area to have more kids do community service with us. Interesting target, kids often don’t do much outside of school other than athletics.

Japanese filmmakers are schooled in Berkeley politics

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Soon, Berkeley’s political culture will be immortalized. 

A group of four Japanese filmmakers, the latest in a recent string of Japanese peace activists to cross the Pacific and visit the anti-war hotbed, arrived last weekend to start work on a documentary tentatively titled “Democracy in Berkeley City.” 

The contingent has interviewed peace activists, followed City Councilmember Kriss Worthington, taped vigils and recorded various city meetings. The filmmakers, who will wrap up their work next week, plan to show their documentary to peace organizations, political groups and students in Japan. 

The documentary will touch on the Free Speech Movement and anti-war protests of the 1960s, examine the City Council’s Oct. 16 resolution calling for a speedy end to the bombing in Afghanistan and include a segment on KPFA’s activist-style radio. 

But producer Osamu Kimura said Berkeley’s culture of heavy citizen involvement in politics will be at the center of the documentary. 

“Our focus is citizen participation,” he said, arguing that increased grassroots activism is the key to Japanese peace activists’ latest political fight – the struggle against a series of “emergency” or “contingency” laws proposed by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. 

The laws would give the prime minister greater power over the media, transportation, telecommunications and local governments in the event of a military crisis. 

Proponents say the laws would provide a much-needed framework in the event of a crisis, while detractors say they are reminiscent of Japan’s militaristic past. 

Japanese politicians have pushed for contingency laws since the 1970s but have repeatedly failed. The Sep. 11 terrorist attacks on the United States and Japanese logistical support for the US in its military campaign in Afghanistan have given hawks new momentum. 

The Japanese left has mounted several large protests against the proposed emergency laws. But in order to ensure the long-term health of the peace movement, Kimura said, Japanese activists must move beyond a culture of simple protest to one of active engagement in the political process. 

“Now, we feel we do not (do enough) to concretize participation,” he said. 

Steve Freedkin, a member of Berkeley’s Peace and Justice Commission who visited Japan in March, said Japanese activists have begun to improve participation by petitioning local governments to take stands on international issues.  

The City Council’s October anti-war resolution, the filmmakers said, fit in with this strategy and attracted Japanese activists. 

“Berkeley is a small city, but it’s famous,” said Jamila Takahashi, an anti-war activist from Tokyo who is traveling with the film crew. 

Kimura, who has also produced a documentary on an endangered Japanese sea mammal called the dugong, said he hopes the Berkeley film will not only teach lessons about citizen participation, but broaden Japanese understanding for the political currents in the United States. 

“We have news about Bush, Clinton and Nixon, but very little information about grassroots movements,” he said. 

Freedkin said the Berkeley peace movement and the national movement as a whole have something to learn from the Japanese as well. 

“They are much more coordinated in different cities,” Freedkin said, describing one of the primary lessons from his March trip. “There’s much more of a unified movement in Japan. That’s something we can learn.” 

This week, however, it is the Japanese who have done the learning. 

Senior housing desperately needed, falling through the cracks of the system commonplace

Nancy Anderson
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor:  

There was an article 5/13/02 from Kevin Zwick regarding AHA senior housing project for the city of Berkeley. This is a letter I have sent to Senators Boxer and Feinstein and congressman Miller regarding my experiences as an apartment renter in Pleasant Hill.  

After one year my rent was increased by $200, financial support for Hookston Senior Apartments was no longer forthcoming. Yes, the property had been repaired, fixed, etc....and then the elderly became expendable. What else is new regarding the elderly? I wonder who made lots and lots of money on that deal? 

AARP came through with a temporary job for me and I was fortunate in finding a place in Berkeley that I could afford. AHA is Affable Housing so I keep it discreet but quite frankly I am skeptical and mistrusting about anything they repair and fix up for those in need. I believe we pay for their fixing and when they're through they make lots of money and we are out on our tails trying to survive. I wish to underline that those who are out of luck in this situation are good people, some blind, some wheelchair bound, some who have just had a little bad luck. 


Nancy Anderson 


Scrumbly and Sweet Pam: Cockettes Forever

Peter Crimmins, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

There is a moment in the new documentary “The Cockettes” when co-director Bill Weber edited a montage sequence of several former members of the legendary drag theatrical troupe remembering when their first show took place. Some are certain it was on Halloween. Others are absolutely sure it was on New Year’s Eve. The jovial moment of memory discrepancy laughs at a central question posed to the craft of historical documentary: if all the participants were too stoned to remember, do details matter? 

The moment is also one where the otherwise formally crafted film loosens up a bit.  

Filmmakers David Weissman and Bill Weber have tried to construct a film that would make sense of a group of people who celebrated chaos. Their subject – a band of hippie freaks and drag queens in San Francisco circa 1970 who put on stage shows using cabaret-style music and dance numbers to catapult an anarchy of off-key notes, thrift-store dresses, a cacophony of gender-bending free love, and more than their fair share of psychedelics into a moment of national fame that tweaked the hypothalamus of pop culture to come – had all the structure of a love-in. 

But for most of the Cockettes, once dizzy with spontaneous creativity and energy, the party couldn’t last forever.  

Watching the film, one is struck by the difference between the Cockettes now and then; between the straight-looking homeowners with haircuts and tailored clothes alongside archival images of Dionysian, grease-painted, Salvation Army nymphs with glitter in their pubic hair. 

One of the principal songwriters and arrangers, Scrumbly (aka Richard Kolewyn) still remembers the Cockettes songs. Sitting at the piano of the music room of his home on 59th Street in North Oakland, surrounded by bookshelves filled with sheet music and Cole Porter books, he accompanied Sweet Pam (aka Pam Tent) doing “Divorcee’s Lament.”  

Scrumbly is now a professional musician performing in local cabaret and musical theater shows. Sweet Pam, who once opened for the New York Dolls and the Ramones, now works at a local lumber company, and she can still sell a lyric (“…Reno, I want to be free!”). 

Even if they don’t sport vintage 1930’s costumes discovered in diligent thrift-store expeditions, once a Cockette, always a Cockette. “I still like to troll thrift stores, and I don’t need to shop there anymore,” said Sweet Pam, who attended the premier of “The Cockettes” at Sundance with a suitcase full of second-hand clothes. “Now it’s difficult. But here in Oakland you can still get good deals. It’s amazing. Even go further, go to San Leandro.” 

“But you can’t get anything from the 30’s,” said Scrumbly. 

“Oh, yes you can,” Pam corrected him. 

“Well," sneered Scrumbly, “I guess I haven’t been to San Leandro in a while.” 

“Exactly. The dear ladies at the Treasure Hospice.” 

The film is now enjoying its premiere engagement in Bay Area theaters and will have an exclusive broadcast on the Sundance channel on June 21 before its national theatrical release. It is chock-a-block with dazzling archival footage of the Cockettes in full fabulous regalia, but the Cockettes would not take pictures of themselves.  

“Everyone was so in the moment we didn’t think to record for posterity,” Sweet Pamsaid. 

Instead, photographers of the day sought them out. Annie Liebowitz, Mary Allen Mark, Bud Lee and others donated their 30 year-old negatives to the filmmakers. What developed was more than an homage to the free spirit of makeup and tattered dresses; the film delivers an image of alternative living in 60’s San Francisco that is rarely seen, one made up of serious revolutionary fervor alongside the pursuit of unmitigated joy bordering on insanity. It has been described as the plaids versus the sequins. 

“The plaid meant you were the unadorned individual, like no lipstick for women. No lipstick, no bra. Back-to-nature and paring everything down to the simplest things,” Scrumbly explained. “The idea that you could dress up and not spend any money was what a few people discovered. It was like discovering glam all over again.” 

When the Cockettes started taking their wardrobe to the stage in 1970, the people came. The in-crowd crowded the Palace Theater in San Francisco’s North Beach to watch their overwhelming energy transcend theatrical chaos.  

“We were not against traditional theater,” said Scrumbly. “What we were doing was to be in the moment.” 

“The audience was our peers. Half of them were stoned,” Pam remembered. “They didn’t come to see a professional show. They came to have a party.” 

“Yeah, it’s like a big party and a few brave souls get up there in front of everybody and do some crazy, funny things. And sometimes it was really good funny, and sometimes it was just stupid. And that was good, too.” 

Their shows caught the attention of the national media, and eventually the hipster glitterati of New York. They were invited to perform a three-week run in New York and they were the toast of the town, until the night of the first show. The theater was too large, the songs were unrehearsed, and the previously adoring audience turned away from the ragged San Francisco hippies. 

“The hype was unsurpassed,” Scrumbly said. 

“And some people believed the hype,” added Pam. 

“It was easy to believe because we were being treated like royalty, like only New York can when they think you’re the new thing.” 

But New York didn’t want what the Cockettes were offering. The Cockettes’ Big Apple run eventually found the audience it needed, but the initial flop highlighted the difference between counter-culture living in NY versus that in SF. 

“One was heroin and one was LSD,” laughed Scrumbly. “Hippie was meaningless in New York at that point.” 

“They were a tougher stock. We were very much a family,” Pam said. “Despite our differences we were a family of freaks. They were very much individuals and glamour queens.” 

“Certainly a lot of people gravitated with us. It was a great party with the NY freaks. It was really fun.” 

“We were so happy. We were just idiotically happy,” Sweet Pam chirped. “It didn’t translate well. That joie-de-vivre from the West Coast somehow fell flat on the stage. It wasn’t professional enough.” 

“Well, of course,” Scrumbly assented. 

After the New York debacle, the film’s enthusiasm for the Cockettes diminished, setting up the viewers for the coming dissolution of the group, and the film’s final act. In reality the Cockettes returned from New York rejuvenated by everything they had experienced there. They continued to put on sell-out shows in San Francisco with no less energy and revitalized creativity. 

“The first show after NY was “Les Etoiles de Paris,” which was one of the most artistically gorgeous shows,” said Sweet Pam. 

“The stage was the top of a vanity,” Scrumbly said, remembering the oversized perfume bottles, combs, and other objects d’toilet. “I sang ‘Jewels of Paris’ and out came bathing beauties with gigantic jewels on their heads. And we had 5 Edith Piafs. 5 Maurice Chevaliers.” 

“And the shows were still selling out,” Sweet Pam recalled. “The last show was at the House of Good, Jim Jones’ temple – way before the massacre. We did the Miss Demeanor Beauty Pageant. Divine was there [the famous corpulent drag queen from Baltimore featured in John Water’s films] and she won.” 

“No, she was last year’s Miss Demeanor,” Scrumbly corrected. 

“That’s right. And Goldie won.” 

Scrumbly corrected again. “No, China White won.” 

“I don’t remember that.” 

“Well, I was on less drugs, I guess.” 

Eventually the Cockettes ended. Key people left and others continued performing together under different names. Although they may be somewhat less glittery than they were, filmmaerk Bill Wever said the personalities of the former Cockettes were amazingly intact. 

“There is only no Cockette left if you deny ever being one,” Scrumbly beamed. 

Senegal provides stunning start to first Asian World Cup

By Phil Brown, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

YOKOHAMA, Japan – Africans again opened a World Cup with a monumental upset. 

Rekindling memories of one of the continent’s greatest soccer triumphs 12 years earlier, Senegal frustrated defending champion France with a tight defense and flawless goalkeeping. The World Cup newcomers made a 30th-minute goal from Papa Bouba Diop stand for a 1-0 victory that sparked dancing in the streets back home in Dakar. 

Not that Senegal President Abdoulaye Wade was surprised. He predicted victory for his upstarts, who matched the feat of Cameroon in 1990, when it beat Argentina 1-0. 

“They learned their trade, their technique, the science of football in France,” Wade said. “They have come to Senegal’s side, a little like an apprentice who learned his lesson well, and now faces his master.” 

And beats the master, which looked tentative without injured star Zinedine Zidane. The hero of the 1998 championship is sidelined with a torn thigh muscle. 

Still, nothing can minimize Senegal’s achievement. Not the French shots that hit the posts and crossbar, or went directly at goalkeeper Tony Sylva. Not the nervousness the favorites displayed. 


“Today’s victory is a victory for all of Africa and Senegal,” Diop said. “No one expected that Senegal will beat France. But we did.” 

Senegal certainly wouldn’t mind repeating Cameroon’s showing at Italia ’98. Cameroon went to the quarterfinals, becoming the most successful African team in the World Cup. 

Argentina recovered to reach the final, as France still could do. 

“We take comfort from the fact that nothing’s finished,” coach Roger Lemerre said. “There are two more matches to win. If we can win, we’ll have six points and we’ll be through.” 

The first World Cup in Asia — and the first to be divided between two countries — opened with fireworks, traditional dance, high-tech displays and bristling security. 

Japan, the co-host with South Korea, was represented at opening ceremonies by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and Prince Takamado, a cousin of the emperor and first member of Japan’s royal family to visit Korea since the end of Japanese rule there in 1945. 

South Korea hoped Emperor Akihito himself would attend, but Japan worried about lingering hostility after war and occupation. The emperor is to attend the final June 30 in Yokohama. 

When recently re-elected FIFA president Sepp Blatter spoke at the opening, he was jeered by some of the 64,640 in the stands.

25 bicycles stolen from police group

By Matt Liebowitz, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

Program for underprivileged
kids may now be in jeopardy


The Berkeley Boosters Police Activity League is desperate after 25 of its bicycles were stolen Thursday from a storage space under the old Lee Frank Jewelers on Shattuck Avenue at Allston Street. 

“We’re really grasping at straws,” said David Manson, executive director of the boosters league. “I went there at 1 p.m., (Thursday) and they were all gone.”  

For 19 years the Boosters have collaborated with the Berkeley Police Department to provide outdoor-oriented programs for low-income, at-risk kids.  

This summer’s program, a 120-mile bike ride from Berkeley to Coloma, followed by camping and whitewater rafting, is scheduled July 8 to July 26, but Manson is now unsure of the program’s status. 

“There’s a slim hope that we’ll recover these bicycles at all, let alone by July 8,” Manson said. “This is a phenomenal loss.”  

August Chemotti of Mike’s Bicycle Center on University Avenue said bike theft is a big problem. 

“Bike theft around here is huge,” Chemotti said. In the repair room in the back of the shop, Chemotti pointed out a bike recently brought in without a steering column.  

“We get something like this every single day,” Chemotti said. He then took the seat and back wheel off, leaving the bike stripped and the frame on the ground. “We get them like this too.”  

Miriam Hunting, a co-worker of Chemotti’s said, “You’ve got to wonder where all the stolen wheels go.”  

A missing wheel could cost the owner $75 to more than $100 to replace, Hunting said. 

“Someone is earning a lot of money off these stolen wheels,” he said. 

The staff at Mike’s said they don’t loan bikes but would be willing to offer the Boosters a deal on bikes to keep their program on schedule. 

The Berkeley Police Department could not be reached for comment. 



We are entitled to be ‘under God’

Harold Reimann
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

You can take “under God” out of the Pledge of Allegiance but you can't take yourself out from under god. Big Brother rules. 

He has deceived all the nations (Rev. 12:9), father of lies, god of this world. Orwell's “1984” should have been called“3990 BC - 2010 AD.” 

The last time a nation was under God with a capital "G" was Judah when the Jews returned from Babylon under Ezra and Zerubbabel. Israel, the 10 northern tribes which the US and Britain came from, hasn't been under God from the beginning of its existence after the death of King Solomon. We don't even keep the sabbath, one of the 10 Commandments. The greatest country on earth and we don't know who we are in the Bible. 

So you have freedom of religion?  

You can have any religion you want but you're all under the same god, the god of disinformation. I pledge my allegiance to God. He's going to send a special messenger with the truth – a prophet like Elijah who is going to turn hearts back to the real God. 


Harold Reimann 

Lucerne Valley 


Disney movie introduces Elvis to a new generation

By Woody Baird, The Associated Pres
Saturday June 01, 2002

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Most of them were born a decade or two after Elvis Presley died. But the kids watching Disney’s new “Lilo & Stitch” at a screening in Memphis got a chuckle when the small blue space alien Stitch did an Elvis impersonation in a white jumpsuit. 

And that made the folks from Graceland happy, too. 

“We’re going to have millions of young kids discovering Elvis and asking their parents if they’ve ever heard of this guy,” said Jack Soden, president of Elvis Presley Enterprises Inc. 

It’s a big year for Graceland, the center of a multimillion-dollar business owned by Elvis’ sole heir, Lisa Marie Presley. Aug. 16 is the 25th anniversary of Presley’s death in 1977 at the Memphis mansion, and he is already getting new attention. 

This week, RCA Records released a version of his 1968 “A Little Less Conversation” to radio and commercial outlets. “Elvis vs. JXL — a Little Less Conversation,” remixed into a techno groove by Junkie XL, has already hit No. 1 in Britain. 

Also this week, RCA/BMG Heritage released a four-CD box set, “Elvis: Today, Tomorrow & Forever,” with 100 previously unreleased tracks, mostly alternate takes of lesser-known material. And an album of Elvis’ 30 No. 1 hits is due out in September. 

As for “Lilo & Stitch,” it was not planned to coincide with the Elvis anniversary. Disney came to Graceland more than two years ago with the idea of including Elvis music in the movie. 

“Then they began weaving Elvis more and more into the movie and it became a multi-tier series of permissions and licenses, and of course we were getting more excited by the minute,” Soden said. 

Presley’s music runs throughout the animated movie. Lilo is a lonely young girl in Hawaii who consoles herself with Elvis records that belonged to her deceased parents. She has no friends until she adopts Stitch, the mischievous alien she thinks is a dog. 

The movie opened Friday, and there was an invitation-only show the night before in Memphis, followed by an elaborate luau at Graceland put on by Disney. 

Hula dancers, Hawaiian torches and banquet tables with thatched roofs greeted the more than 600 guests, who included business associates of Graceland and Disney and their families. 

“The day we decided to use Elvis music in the movie we didn’t think we would be here celebrating at Graceland,” said Dean DeBlois, co-writer and director of the film. 

Eight Elvis songs are in the movie, and making Lilo an Elvis fan helped round out her character, DeBlois said. 

“It would make her a little different from other girls her age today who are listening to the latest pop bands,” he said. “We have one scene where Lilo is alone. She’s lonely and feeling kind of sorry for herself so we picked ’Heartbreak Hotel’ for that one.” 

Presley made three movies in Hawaii and staged two of his best-known concerts there: a benefit for the USS Arizona in 1961 and “Aloha From Hawaii” in 1973. 

DeBlois and his partner, Chris Sanders, got a private tour of Graceland. One long hallway is lined with Presley’s gold and platinum records. 

“I turned one time and I was right at ’Blue Hawaii.’ I couldn’t believe it,” Sanders said. “I walked a couple of feet and there was ’Rock-A-Hula.”’

St. Mary’s to hire new boys’ coach

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Olivier moving on
to Hercules High


The St. Mary’s High administration will name a new boys’ head basketball coach on Monday, Athletic Director Jay Lawson confirmed Friday. 

Lawson declined to identify the new coach on Friday, as an official announcement won’t be released until after the weekend, but did say the hire is from outside the current staff and will also teach Spanish, the same position held by former coach Jose Caraballo. That eliminates former assistant coach Mark Olivier, who was one of the four finalists for the job. Olivier confirmed his plan to take over the head coaching job at Hercules High next season. 

Lawson also said Friday that the school’s staff had met with most of the returning players, and all affirmed their plan to stay at St. Mary’s.

City to aid artists in struggle with landlord

By Chris Nichols, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

For Don Donahue, leaving the “Warehouse” at 2750 Adeline Street, a south Berkeley artist’s cooperative, would be a challenge. If an eviction dispute is not resolved, Donahue faces the task of moving an immense collection of art and more than 26 years worth of underground comic books.  

As a publisher of alternative comic books, poetry and literature since the 1960’s, Donahue, along with many Berkeley residents and city officials is concerned that too many local artists are being forced out of the city. 

“A lot of people have come and gone, artists, musicians. Somehow I’ve always stayed here. Every time I almost moved out I always ended up staying,” reflected Donahue. 

Despite the fact that they have all been issued eviction notices, the residents at 2750 Adeline Street hope that theirs will be a success story.  

According to Natasha Shawver, a resident of the building for the past 19 years, the city of Berkeley has taken notice of the cooperative’s situation and shown support. “I never thought in a million years the city would listen to us,” said Shawver. “They’ve shown a lot of effort. They’ve really backed us up.” 

The City Council voted unanimously in April to temporarily waive thousands of dollars in fees if the artists are able to buy the building, and temporarily waive the retrofitting timeline on the site.  

According to Councilmember Kriss Worthington, a supporter of the cooperative, the City Manager has assigned several people to assist the tenants in their communication with the building’s landlord, Sasha Shamszad. “Several city departments including the housing department are working on this and we hope for a ‘win-win’ situation,” says Worthington. 

Shamszad, the owner of Ziba Photographics in Berkeley and San Francisco, did not comment on the case, citing instructions from his lawyer. 

“This is not an isolated instance. There is a pattern of artists being forced from their studios. We need to get the landlords and the tenants to work together,” added Worthington. 

The city is currently examining a number of tenant buildings which face similar eviction cases, specifically in the arts and crafts district in west Berkeley. 

A collection of old pinball machines, original artwork and comic books greet visitors as they enter 2750 Adeline Street, representing the unique and creative personalities within the house. 

Residents at the cooperative emphasize that their building is a part of the larger community. Shawver, who’s toy store was open to the public for 10 years until 1996, says she has a relationship with the community. “I’m connected to the community. I see people at the grocery store and around town and get their feedback. There hasn’t been one person who hasn’t been supportive of us,” said Shawver. 

“We’ve seen people grow up here,” said Donahue. 

According to Rosita Fogelman, a graphic artist originally from Israel and resident of the cooperative for the past four years, a creative vein runs throughout the building. “It’s a great place to get inspiration, once you’ve got it just comes out,” says Fogelman.  

Fogelman, who was attracted to Berkeley’s reputation as a center for art and culture, says she hopes an agreement can be reached between the residents and the current landlord. “We want a deal to work out. Our hope is to keep this place and to keep it open to the community,” says Fogelman. 

Fogelman notes that the previous landlord, Tim Baker, worked hard to keep the building affordable for the tenants. “He wanted artists who would participate in the community. If we had more owners like that we’d have a happier town,” says Fogelman. 

Residents of 2750 Adeline Street plan to run a series of art shows outside the building this August and be included in the Berkeley Art Festival. According to Shawver, the cooperative hopes to include an eclectic and funky display of artwork at the shows and focus on involving community participation in the shows. 

According to Shawver, the remaining six residents do not want to vilify their landlord. They hope, rather, to work with Shamszad to find a middle ground. 

“We feel we have an insight into the community, that we have a unique opportunity to be helpful,” said Shawver. 


Commentary: Partying controls

Saturday June 01, 2002

Today the county Board of Supervisors takes on the Isla Vista party scene. The board will consider giving law enforcement more powers to break up social gatherings and cite party-goers for unruly behavior. Isla Vista’s rowdiness could stand to be taken down a few notches. Officers documented 2,900 alcohol-related crimes in I.V. in 2001. 

Yet the county proposals, when considered along with (University of California, Santa Barbara’s) plans to notify parents when their undergraduate sons or daughter are arrested or cited for public intoxication, raise questions about fairness, civil liberties and privacy protections 

Residents, students, business owners and law enforcement officers shouldn’t miss sharing their thoughts ...(about) an ordinance that would let officers declare a gathering a public nuisance. 

Among the new rules: Parties could be shut down if officers see beer kegs from the sidewalk. Officers could send everyone home and write citations to people who refuse. This provision, unfairly, would only apply to I.V. and not other unincorporated areas. 

Separate from the county, UCSB wants to notify parents when undergraduates are cited or arrested for public intoxication. But remember arrest does not prove guilt. 

UCSB’s scheme relies on an outdated notion of family. Many students may be estranged from one or both of their parents. An appeals process might allow a student to ask that a letter not be sent to a particular parent. Yet this would mean that UCSB would compel a student not convicted of any crime to disclose private family matters to government employees. 


May 21 

Visalia Times Delta: Farmworkers also need leverage to negotiate contracts 

Farm labor negotiations are typically difficult, and California has a long history of contentious relations between management and labor in agriculture. 

Given that history and the frequency by which farmworkers have been thwarted simply by being stonewalled, it seems fair to provide a tool for workers to get growers to bargain in good faith. 

A bill in the Legislature would mandate binding arbitration to end impasses over contract negotiations. It would apply only to farmers whose workers have voted to organize. 

Agriculture management is against it. The state Farm Bureau complains that it would inflict a labor requirement on agriculture that no other business is subject to. 

The United Farm Workers union contends that the provision would not even be necessary if growers bargained with them in good faith, but the union cites dozens of instances where growers refused to sign or live up to a contract. 

Binding arbitration can be an important incentive to both sides to come to an agreement. It in effect puts the proceedings on the clock and guarantees there will be a resolution. Farm workers have traditionally been stymied by stalling tactics or simply by having growers walk away from the table, hire another group of workers and start over. 

We can understand the objections of growers, however, operating as they do in a business with a very narrow margin. 

The solution for both sides, of course, is an adjustment of the basic agriculture economy: Growers should be able to pay farm laborers more. To do that, they need to get more for their produce. When consumers un-derstand they have a role to play in that, too, maybe real reform can take place and some of the tension will go out of grower-worker relations. 


Waters talk features seasonal fruit, other savory topics

By Ian M. Stewart, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

xYou may expect that a new book called “Chez Panisse Fruit” by Alice Waters, the world-famous chef and owner of Berkeley's own Chez Panisse restaurant, is all about fruit. Well, you'd be half-right. Waters will be the first to tell you that it's really about “how to think about food put in the context of fruit.” 

Waters, who spoke about her new book at Cody's Books on Fourth Street on May 29, said that her book is more about how to get connected with food and the people who grow it. 

“I support the people at the farmer's markets — I go rain or shine,” she said. “Their produce and fruit makes what the restaurant is today. It's a great feeling to have this support, care and community with them.” 

“Chez Panisse Fruit,” which is Waters' eighth book and was written in conjunction with the cooks from the restaurant, has more than 300 pages featuring more than 200 recipes. Those recipes cover the gamut on every imaginable dish, from waffles to salads and from stews to pork loin, all with fruit as the centerpiece. But one of the main accents are the desserts, which range from tarts and jams to crisps and ice cream — including a recipe for huckleberry ice cream. Different fruits break down the sections. With each new fruit comes a note about when it's in season along with an essay about the origins of that particular fruit, how to select it store and of course prepare it. 

“Eighty-five percent of cooking is finding the right ingredient,” said Waters to crowd of more than 50 people. “The focus has to be on the farmer and that farmer is taking care of the fruit and produce.” 

Waters, who said she deals with about 75 producers of fruit and vegetables year round, said that the book could be a great companion on trips to local farmer's markets. She said that all of the fruit on the menu at Chez Panisse, which opened in 1971, is only fruit that's in season. Currently, it's strawberry season she said, so if you go to a local farmer's market or into Chez Panisse, those are going to be the main ingredients that you see. 

“Our restaurant is not run in the usual way-in the pyramid way with the cook on top looking down,” she said. “We're more like an improvisational music group. We follow the person's lead who is most enthusiastic. They decide what to cook based on what was brought in that day.” 

Food changes as soon as it's picked, said Waters, who also said that she and her chefs travel to a local farmer in Sonoma five days a week to get fresh fruits and vegetables, many times bringing the compost from the restaurant to give back to the farmer. It's understanding what the fruit looks like and tastes like, along with the ability to make changes on the fly that make great dishes. 

A graduate from the University of California at Berkeley with a degree in French cultural studies, Waters said that when she travels and goes to restaurants, she always wants to eat what's grown locally. 

“But it's very difficult to do this because of global trade,” she said. “We must insist on getting fresh, local produce.” 

A good tip to try and figure out what's in season when eating out, is to go to the marketplace and see what's in season there, then go the restaurant and ask for that. 

“It's all about supporting the people who grow and giving money directly to the people involved with growing. It's about making choices like this which is going to change the world,” she said. 

During a question and answer period at the end of her discussion, Waters also gave insight on her views about her philosophy of being committed to organic, locally grown food and how that could be taught in schools. 

“We need to educate through the public school system, around the school lunch program,” she said. “We need to teach students how to feed themselves and about where food comes from. It's about getting kids involved in the process of picking the fruit and vegetables.” 

Waters, who started the Chez Panisse Foundation to underwrite culture and education programs, currently helps children maintain a garden at the Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School. One of her other suggestions involves getting the whole school involved in food, from having the biology teacher hold a lab in the garden, to English teachers getting students to write recipes from certain historical periods or try to make food in relation to what they're studying. 

In addition to her discussion, a showcase of local artist Patricia Curtan, whose lithographs and illustrations are featured in the book, were on display. According to literature from Cody's Books, Curtan has a long association with Chez Panisse as a printer, designer, former cook, and is a cookbook co-author and designer. Her collection can be viewed at the location on Fourth Street from May 15 through June 2. 


San Jose State basketball player suffers accidental death in Mono County

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

BRIDGEPORT– A member of the San Jose State University men’s basketball team was found dead at the bottom of a waterfall near Mammoth Lakes, the victim of an apparent accidental death according to investigators. 

James Jenkins, 19, of La Crescenta, was on a hiking trip Wednesday with his father. After the pair became separated, Horace Jenkins reported his son missing. 

Jenkins’ body was discovered Thursday at 1:55 p.m. at the bottom of Rush Creek Falls, a 200-foot tall, 80-foot wide powerful waterfall near Agnew Lake. 

The cause of death was under investigation Friday by the Mono County coroner’s office. 

Jenkins was a 6-foot-7 walk-on forward for the Spartans. He played in 30 of the team’s 32 games last season, averaging 1.8 points and 1.5 rebounds. 

“In the short time I’ve known James, he is one of the finest young men I’ve known. This is devastating news to us here at San Jose State and, obviously, to his family,” said men’s basketball head coach Phil Johnson. 

Jenkins was a 2001 graduate of Crescenta Valley High School in La Crescenta, Calif. where he lettered in basketball and swimming. 

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Answers sought after Haste Street stabbing

Mike Dinoffria, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

Victim was apparently,
‘in the wrong place at the
wrong time’ police said


Flowers and photographs marked the spot where Roysel Marshall-Darrow was stabbed to death Wednesday evening. Family and friends gathered at the site on Haste Street near Telegraph Avenue to remember the man they called a good father, son, husband and friend. They made a small, temporary memorial against the outside wall of Rochdale UC co-op, and told stories about the gregarious man they knew.  

All in attendance said Marshall-Darrow was a person unlikely to be involved in a violent altercation.  

A stranger stabbed Marshall-Darrow three times while he was putting money into a parking meter on the 2400 block of Haste Street, police and witnesses said. Police arrested a suspect, but say they don’t know whyMarshall-Darrow was murdered. 

“A motive hasn’t been determined,” said Berkeley police Lt. Ed McBride. “It appeared the victim was in the wrong place at the wrong time.”  

Lamar Mitchell, 23, of Pittsburgh is in police custody under suspicion of the stabbing. An arraignment originally set for Friday was rescheduled for Tuesday. 

Lt. McBride said the attacker approached Marshall-Darrow on the north side of Haste Street. Marshall-Darrow turned from the attacker before being stabbed repeatedly: once in the heart, once in the side and one time in the arm.  

Marshall-Darrow was taken to Highland Hospital in Oakland and pronounced dead upon arrival. He died as a result of stab wounds to his chest, said Supervising Coroner Frank Gentle of the Alameda County Coroner’s Office. 

Marshall-Darrow, 41, was born in Berkeley. Friend Gavin Housch said that he loved Telegraph Avenue and enjoyed getting coffee there periodically, including when he attended U.C. Berkeley twenty years ago. He lived in a home in Hamet in Southern California with his wife and three children and commuted to Northern California a couple of times a month to work. He was a trained electrician who worked as a power lineman for San Francisco Muni. A memorial is scheduled 3 p.m. Sunday at the Rose Garden in Berkeley.  

Agnostics want recognition

Sonja Fitz
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

I’m sorry people are so offended by the desire of atheists and agnostics to be recognized as a legitimate and welcome part of the national fabric, as loyal citizens, and as worthy of the same respect that people of different faiths profess to pay each other.  

I’m sick of being assumed by many to lack ethics because I don't believe in God. I love and care for my family and friends. I respect and look out for my neighbors and fellow community members. I believe in democracy and I vote regularly. I work, volunteer, and practice random acts of kindness.  

Godless does not equal amoral. This ruling is long overdue. I don't undersand the controversey.  

Do we have separation of church and state or don't we? Are those of us who don't believe in God equal citizens or aren't we?  


Sonja Fitz 

Berkeley, CA

Despite Entwistle’s death, The Who returns to stage

By Larry McShane, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

NEW YORK – The two surviving members of The Who decided Friday to resume their scheduled three-month U.S. tour despite the sudden death of bassist John Entwistle, their bandmate of nearly four decades. 

“The band decided to recommence the tour beginning at the Hollywood Bowl (a Monday night show),” according to a message posted on guitarist Pete Townshend’s Web site. 

The first show will serve as “a tribute to John Entwistle,” the band said in a separate statement. 

Pino Palladino, a British session player who has worked on Townshend’s solo projects, will fill in for Entwhistle, the Web site said. The band intends to complete the full tour, and will reschedule two dates postponed after the death. 

The band’s name will be the same, but it won’t be the same Who. 

Whenever the band took the stage, Roger Daltrey provided the sound and Townshend the fury. Off to the side, frozen except for the fingers flying across his fretboard, stood “The Ox” — Entwistle. 

Entwistle, a player of restraint in a band of excess, died Thursday of an apparent heart attack at a Las Vegas hotel. An autopsy was scheduled in Las Vegas to determine the exact cause of death, with the results of blood and lab tests expected to take two to 12 weeks, said Clark County Coroner Ron Flud. 

But Las Vegas authorities said there was no sign of trauma, no sign of violence and no drug paraphernalia in Entwistle’s hotel room. There was no word on funeral arrangements, and Entwistle’s family issued a call for privacy. 

Entwistle, who was on medication for a heart condition, was 57. Thirty-eight of those years were spent with The Who, which he co-founded as a London teen. 

Entwistle was “probably the most influential bassist in rock music,” said rock critic Bruce Eder of the All Music Guide. Total Guitar magazine named him as bassist of the millennium in 2000, selecting Entwistle over contemporaries Paul McCartney of the Beatles, Bill Wyman of the Rolling Stones and John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin. 

“The quietest man in private but the loudest onstage,” Wyman said of his late friend. “He was unique and irreplaceable.” 

Entwistle’s death came one day before the band was scheduled to open its tour in Las Vegas. That show was postponed, along with a second show set for Saturday night in Irvine, Calif. 

Fans in Las Vegas turned out at The Joint, the 1,800-seat theater where The Who had been scheduled to perform. The Who movie “Quadrophenia” was playing instead.

Brazil vs. Germany – finally

By Ronald Blum The Associated Press By Ronald Blum, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

YOKOHAMA, Japan – What a time and place for the first World Cup meeting between Brazil and Germany — in the final, for the trophy, with all the world watching. 

“We have been looking for this game for so many years in Brazil,” said Carlos Alberto Parreira, who coached his nation to the 1994 title. “I would say that the hierarchy has been restored by this Germany-Brazil final.” 

Brazil has won four World Cup titles and Germany three. Of the 12 World Cup finals since World War II, 11 have included one of those two nations, with Argentina’s 1978 victory over the Netherlands the only exception. 

But, strangely, they’ve avoided each other in soccer’s showcase. No Pele vs. Sepp Maier. No Franz Beckenbauer vs. Gylmar. 

“Both teams have a great tradition,” Brazilian forward Rivaldo said. “If Brazil wants to be champions, we have to respect Germany. Not fear them, respect them.” 

Germany won its semifinal, 1-0 over co-host South Korea on Tuesday in Seoul. Brazil did its part a night later, defeating Turkey 1-0 in Saitama to match the Germans of 1982, 1986 and 1990 as the only nation to make the final three straight times. 

“Brazil is the best you can get,” said Oliver Kahn, Germany’s brilliant goalkeeper. “Individually, they have world-class players at every position. But the sum of best individuals doesn’t necessarily make the best team and I think we can beat them. My gut feeling tells me that we are going to be the world champions, but I can’t explain why.” 

It’s an unlikely time for the teams’ first World Cup meeting. Both nations struggled in qualifying and were considered by some long shots even to reach the quarterfinals. 

Brazil was just 9-6-3 in qualifying — unheard of mediocrity in the land of samba soccer — getting in only with a victory over lowly Venezuela in its final game. Germany needed to beat Ukraine in a playoff to make it. 

“Nobody really expected us to even go to the round of 16,” Germany coach Rudi Voeller said. 

Brazil won the title in 1958, 1962, 1970 and 1994, earning praise much of the time for its stylish attacks. West Germany captured the championship in 1954, 1974 and 1990, sometimes criticized for its lack of imagination — and ability to flop in front of officials to gain unwarranted penalty kicks. 

There’s little doubt which style most fans prefer. At its best, Brazilian soccer is a painter’s palette. At its worst, German soccer is a wrecking ball, shattering opponents with brute strength and bland-but-effective relentlessness. 

“Despite the criticisms that were leveled at us because of the lack of style, lack of flair, in actual fact we implemented the coach’s instructions,” Germany’s Michael Ballack said after the semifinal win. 

Ballack, who scored the only goals in the quarterfinal against the United States and in the semifinal, will miss Sunday’s game while serving a suspension for getting two yellow cards. Brazil seems supremely confident going in. 

“It will be a match between the most attacking team and the most defensive team, who has only given away one goal,” Brazil’s Roberto Carlos said. “The game will focus on the defensive tactics.” 

In the past decade, the nations have met five times, with Brazil going 3-1-1. Brazil won 2-1 in a 1998 game in Germany, then routed an under-strength German team 4-0 in Mexico at the 1999 FIFA Confederations Cup.

Students gain political clout with 3 commission appointments

By Neil G. Greene, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

Berkeley’s city government is about to get a breath of fresh air with the appointment of three students to the energy, labor, and human welfare commissions. Councilmember Chris Worthington, who selected the students, said plenty of seats are still available for qualified applicants. Worthington’s District 7 is teeming with a resource outside the jurisdiction of other councilmembers’—the UC Berkeley campus, a veritable hive of young men and women looking to make a difference in their immediate and global community. Worthington said that though some of his recent appointees lack experience, their enthusiasm and intelligence qualify them for the job. 

“I'm always trying to encourage more young people to get involved in city government. Some young kids may not have 20 years experience, but they have good ideas,” said Worthington. “Some people appoint people who volunteer and give money to their election campaigns. I try to do outreach to the community. I try to treat it as merit based, rather than political patronage,” he added. 

According to Councilmember Miriam Hawley, not all councilmembers should be  

expected to select students. 

“There's been talk about how everybody has to appoint students and minorities,” said Hawley. “I'm helping to appoint people that represent my district — my district has a tiny potion of students and a relatively small amount of minorities. I don't appoint students unless they're particularly active, so Kriss Worthington should appoint them,” she said. 

There are currently openings for the commission on the aging and the solid waste management commission in Hawley’s District 5. 

Peter Tadao Gee, a 20 year-old sophomore, with a double major in Rhetoric and Ethnic studies was selected by Worthington to serve on the Labor Commission. Last summer Gee worked in Los Angeles for the Korean Immigrant Worker Advocate, a community organization seeking to improve labor rights for immigrants in the service industry. Involved with the Korean Town restaurant Worker Campaign, Gee helped improve the working conditions in downtown Los Angeles' Korean restaurants. 

“Seeing those issues, and how workers were being exploited concerned me,” said Gee. “I felt there needed to be stronger support, and better working conditions for immigrant workers,” he said. 

Gee hopes his presence on the nine person commission will offer Berkeley a fresh perspective, and that his constituency will see him as a resource and channel to the labor commission and city council. 

Some upcoming agenda items he hopes to discuss with his colleagues include the day laborer issue, and U.C. Berkeley's treatment of their service employees. 

“Berkeley is one of the largest employers in Northern California, and I'd like to make sure their laborers are treated fairly, and present a voice for those workers on general working class issues.” 

Jorge Guzman, a 20 year-old junior studying Political Science and Sociology, was selected to serve on the Human Welfare and Community Action Commission.  

And while Guzman acknowledges his lack of experience in city government, he recognizes he has to start somewhere. 

“I wanted to see how the city works, and thought the position would be a good introduction to city politics,” said Guzman. “The other guys had so much experience, it's nice that [Worthington] let me in,” he added. Guzman said he hopes to help bridge the gap between Berkeley’s Latino residents and the City Council. “I know allot of Latinos are not involved in city politics. There are allot in the city, but few on the council. It could be a language issue, so that's one way I could get involved.” 

Nicole Hopper was selected to serve on the Energy Commission could not be reached for comment. In District 7 there are presently seven vacancies available on the Waterfront, Arts, Early Childhood Education, Fire, Peace and Justice commissions.

Activist Joy Moore bows out of Board of Education raceActivist Joy Moore bows out of Board of Education race

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Nutrition activist Joy Moore made it official this week: She will not run for the Board of Education. 

Moore, a community outreach worker, expressed strong interest in running earlier this year, but said this week she will not pursue office. 

“There’s enough people running,” she said, referring to the seven candidates who have declared for the three slots on the board up for election in November. 

When Moore publicly expressed interest in April, only four candidates had entered the race. 

The field now includes incumbents Shirley Issel and Terry Doran, parent activists Nancy Riddle, Derick Miller and Cynthia Papermaster, Berkeley High School discipline dean Robert McKnight and recent BHS graduate Sean Dugar. 

Moore, who serves on the Child Nutrition Advisory Committee, a parent group which advises the board, said she will actively support “a candidate or two” in the race. One of those candidates, she said, will be Doran. Moore has not decided on any others. 

In April, Moore, who is African-American, raised child nutrition and racial diversity on the board as key issues. This week she said the emergence of two African-American candidates, McKnight and Dugar, had allayed some of her concerns about an adequate minority presence on the board.  

But, Moore said she hopes some Latino candidates step forward. 

“I don’t think Latinos have representation on the board right now,” she said, in a swipe at board Vice-President Joaquin Rivera. 

“I’ve tried to do my best,” Rivera replied. 

Rivera’s seat is not up for election this year. School board member John Selawsky does not face re-election either.

Take a look at lights

Charles Siegel
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

There is talk of installing Santa Rosa lights at Adeline and Fairview, because of the recent death there. But there is a much more effective alternative: Hawk lights. 

Hawk lights, used in Tucson, are similar to ordinary traffic lights. They are mounted on poles and masts, and when a pedestrian or bicyclist activates them, they turn yellow and then red, stopping traffic so people can cross. 

Santa Rosa lights are embedded in the crosswalk, where they are less visible, and they flash to warn cars that a pedestrian is crossing. 

It costs $40,000 to install Hawk lights at an intersection, a bit more than the $35,000 that it costs for Santa Rosa lights. 

But Hawk lights are much more effective than Santa Rosa lights. Virtually all drivers stop for Hawk lights, because they look like red traffic lights. 

Many drivers don't stop for Santa Rosa lights, because people do not know that flashing lights at ground level mean they should stop. 

Santa Rosa lights are particularly ineffective during the day, when they are less visible, so they probably would not have stopped the recent death at Adeline and Fairview. 


Charles Siegel 


Freed UC students: ‘We were for peace’

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

LOS ANGELES – Two University of California students deported from Israel after trying to provide humanitarian aid to armed Palestinians during a church standoff in Bethlehem said they were only trying to protect them from injury or arrest. 

Robert O’Neill, a 21-year-old UC Berkeley student from Claremont, and Nauman Zaidi, a 26-year-old UC Riverside student from Rancho Cucamonga, returned to the United States on Monday. 

The two students were among 10 pro-Palestinian activists who rushed past Israeli soldiers earlier this month and joined Palestinians who sought refuge in the church. 

Both men said they were trying to end the seige peacefully and not prolong it. 

“We saw it as almost black and white,” said O’Neill, who spoke with the Los Angeles Times in a recent phone interview. “Regardless of anyone’s political views, these people were starving. They were suffering and somebody had to do something.” 

Israeli officials believe the students’ actions risked the lives of other people inside the church and helped militant Palestinians. 

“They broke Israeli law, they aided terrorists in what became a major standoff, and they put at risk the lives of innocent people,” said David Douek, spokesman for the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles. “It’s a serious offense; it’s not like they were shoplifting.” 

Zaidi and O’Neill were removed from the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank on May 10 as the standoff between armed Palestinians and Israeli soldiers ended after 39 days. Both spent more than two weeks in Israeli custody following the end of the siege. 

Zaidi and O’Neill were studying in Egypt when they entered the church. UC officials said the two have been dropped from the overseas program for violating the university’s rules by putting themselves in danger. Both men said they plan to return to their home campuses this fall to complete their undergraduate degrees. 

Zaidi said he learned on his trip that both Israelis and Palestinians want peace but they have been unable to reach common ground. 

“It’s sad. Both people want peace, but they’re scared of each other, for obvious reasons. They don’t know how to get there. We were trying to help,” he said. 

O’Neill hopes to work for the U.S. State Department and try to change the country’s policy in the Middle East. 

“I think I could initiate a lot of change,” he said. “If every American just knew the realities on the ground over there, about what happens to the Palestinians under occupation, I think the U.S. policy would change tomorrow.”

News of the Weird

Saturday June 01, 2002

Convicted murderer chooses big house over home 


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — A man who is under house arrest while awaiting sentencing in a murder case had had enough of his parents. So he volunteered to go to jail — early. 

Michael Kempker II, 20, contacted the Cole County sheriff’s department late Tuesday night and said he was having trouble at home. He said he wanted to leave before the situation escalated, Sheriff John Hemeyer said. 

The sheriff escorted Kempker back to jail, where he has been well-behaved, Hemeyer said. 

Kempker had been under house arrest since Dec. 31, after pleading guilty to second-degree murder in the Nov. 11 beating death of Paul Thrasher, 20. As part of his plea agreement, prosecutors plan to recommend no more than 30 years in prison, as opposed to the maximum of life. 

Prosecutors say Thrasher was beaten to death and run over with his own vehicle. His body was found in a ditch near Russellville nearly two days later. 


Library police hunt young girl 


LITTLETON, Colo. — A 12-year-old 

girl must appear in court for failing to return one of four books she checked out for a research project on dolphins. 

Marisa Gohr had already returned three of the four books to the Bemis Public Library in Littleton when the summons arrived. She returned the last book a week after the summons. 

“I was kind of scared,” Gohr said about receiving her summons from the Littleton Municipal Court. “I was worried because I’ve never been to court before and I’m so young.” 

Officials at the library said a summons is sent out only after several weeks pass and repeated attempts are made to get the book back. 

After the summons came, the books were returned and $9 in fines was paid. 

When Marisa’s court date came Tuesday, her mother went for her because she didn’t want to take her daughter out of summer school. 

Not good enough, according to the court. The judge told Norma Gohr that her daughter, who is named on the summons, is the one who has to appear in court. A new hearing was set for July 9. 

Since she has already paid her $9, Marisa will need only to show the court her library receipt and pay a $15 court fee to have her case dismissed. 

Marisa said the experience has made her hesitant to check out anything from the library in the future. 

Lately, she said, “I just photocopy stuff from books.” 


A perfect eighteen years 


GLOVERSVILLE, N.Y. — Eric Samrov has never missed a day of school; in 13 years that’s roughly 2,340 school days in a row. 

He graduates from Gloversville High School Saturday with a perfect attendance record dating back to kindergarten — repeating a feat of perfection accomplished two years ago by his older brother, Adam Samrov. 

Besides minor colds, the brothers said they never got sick during school weeks. Neither had chicken pox, and the more severe illnesses seemed to come up during vacations and summer breaks. 

“It’s not that difficult. You just wake up every morning, hope not to be sick and go to school,” said 17-year-old Eric. 

The brothers said there was no competition between them. But having made it late into senior year without missing a day, Eric said his focus was set on making it through all 13 years without missing a day. 

“If I was dead, I wouldn’t come to school. If I was dying, I wouldn’t come to school,” he said. “That’s pretty much (it).”

Look out for cheap shots

Aftim Saba MD
Saturday June 01, 2002

To the Editor: 

Shana Levy (BDP 6/20/02) would like to turn the clock a few years back when liberals of her kind succeeded in preventing pro-Palestinian voices from sharing the progressive platform.  

In those times the code word was “ too controversial”. Now the code word is violence and/or terror. Ms. Levy is troubled by the Pro-Palestinian presence at the recent “Not in Our name” peace rally and equating the pro-palestinian with supporting violence only reveals her biases and significant blind spots. Her failure to recognize that the Palestinian movement wants justice and peace, which means freedom from Israeli occupation and Palestinian state along side Israel is significant. Her failure to speak of Israeli violence is inexcusable.  

Her refusing to join the rally she came to support is sad. This double standards and blind spots can coexist with progressive ideals only for a time before something will give way and or get exposed.  

The natural progression is that Ms. Levy will find herself increasingly comfortable watching FOX cable TV and agreeing with its right wing commentators' views of the Palestinians as violent terror loving people while being fed the rest of that channel’s crap. This transformation of a “progressive” has occurred many times before, and is exemplified by the neo-con magazines Commentary and the New Republic.  

In the mean time, the progressive, real peace loving communities and movement should resist cheap shots and blackmail from the pseudo-progressive types like Shana Levy. 


Aftim Saba MD 


Out of 30 years of teaching, he’s always been on the ball

BY Pauline Bondonno, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

For 22 years Jack Ball held class at Martin Luther King Middle School in Berkeley from a bicycle seat. His students rave about how the physical education teacher would take them on bicycle rides to such exciting destinations as Tilden Park, the Berkeley Marina, Point Isabella or Emeryville Market. 

He will be retiring from King this June after more than 36 years teaching middle school students. Former students, friends, faculty and parents are invited to a retirement dinner for Ball scheduled for June 13 at Tilden Park's Brazil Room at 5 p.m. Advanced reservations are required. 

“He will be deeply missed,” says former King P.E. instructor Ron Nielson.  

“You can't teach somewhere for over 30 years and not become part of that place. They will hire someone else, but they won't get anyone like Jack. He was the kind of guy who helped others. There's a fellow he used to run with who developed terminal brain cancer. He would pick him up, bring him swimming and help him get dressed. Recently he's been taking a man in a wheelchair to swim in the pool for disabled at Berkeley High School.” 

“He's a sort of institution,” says Terri Gerritz, a colleague at King. “He inspired a lot of kids to triathlons and he inspired safe bike riding.” 

Why did he take about 30 thirteen-year-olds on six mile bicycle trips?”I did it because it's something I love to do,” says the veteran teacher. “I just enjoy riding a bike. I enjoy going at a speed where you can still see things, smell things and enjoy your surroundings.” 

His goal was to develop his students’ love for cycling “so they would carry it on for many years” and to teach his 1,300 students safe cycling. 

“I had them wear helmets before it was the law. I taught them how to ride in a group, how to communicate signals to one another.” 

“It was my favorite class at King,” says Berkeley High sophomore Brett Wagner. “I thought it was a lot more fun than other P.E. classes. He is a good person. Mr. Ball gets along well with all the kids, which led to me like his class even more.” 

“The stuff we did was unbelievable,” says Berkeley High sophomore Carly Boland. “He took us all over the place. It was an amazing experience to get ourselves everywhere on a bicycle. He was wonderful. He made you want to be able to ride faster and go further.”  

“When I saw him on his bike with his students he was really happy. He always had fun with them. He was always an advocate for the students,” says former King Science Teacher Warner Freeman.  


“ I found my niche,” says Ball of teaching P.E. “It's something I love to do.” 

Ball, who earned a black belt in Karate, also taught self defense classes as well as swimming and gymnastics. He worked summers at King pool. 

“Teachers don't get paid much, but when I teach a kid to float and I tell him to use his arms and he realizes he is swimming, he gets such a look on his face. The look on his face is payment enough.”  

Ball is equally comfortable in the in the water and running on a trail. As UC Berkeley's Triathlon Coach his students won third place in the national collegiate division triathlon championship in 2001. This year he sent eight UCB students back to the national championships. He still does Olympic distance triathlons himself, which include a 40 kilometer bike ride, a ten kilometer run and a 1.5 kilometer swim. He swam the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon through the bay's rough water.  

He was a participant in the first triathlon in San Francisco. “That was back before wet suits. It was at Aquatic Park. We had to swim in the bay, and bicycle and run.” Last year the marathon runner coached a group of Berkeley High seniors to run the 22 mile marathon in Rome, Italy. The students and Ball recruited sponsors and raised almost $30,000 for a recreation room at Children's Hospital. 

They chose Children's Hospital because when they visited Gabe Califano, a Berkeley High School student who died of leukemia there was no recreation room for youth. They decided as a group to raise money to build one.  

Ball is retiring in June after 37 years of teaching. He taught at King Middle School for more than 33 years and at Portola Middle School in El Cerrito for 4 1/2 years. 

Reservations for his June 13 retirement dinner are required. Tickets for the meal cost $48 and can be bought from Teri Gerritz at (510) 644-6377 at King or at 526-4778 at home. Or send Gerritz an email at tgerritz@aol.com. Dessert tickets cost $20. 

Former students can join Mr. Ball for a bike ride. Call Teri Gerritz at for more information. 

Ball was only 12 when he started teaching swimming, gymnastics and basketball at the Richmond YMCA where his recreation director encouraged Ball to go to school to become a P .E. coach. 

The athlete won diving awards at Richmond High School and later at San Francisco State. He graduated from Contra Costa College then went to San Francisco State College where he majored in physical education.  

“When I went to San Francisco State they said you have to have a major. I said, ‘What's the easiest major?’ They said ‘P.E.’” 

“I was trying to dodge the draft so I stayed in school and got a degree. I graduated and was still trying to dodge the draft so I got a secondary administration credential. Ball lived in the San Francisco during his college days and took part in the peace movent. 


Most bus riders to pay more this fall

Mike Dinoffria, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

AC Transit revamps its


A day after Bay Area commuters saw BART fares and Golden Gate Bridge tolls rise, AC Transit released the specifics of its bus fare and pass-price increases. All East Bay Bus riders will pay higher fares starting Sept. 1, except for youth who will see a considerable discount. 

Late Thursday, the AC Transit Board of directors voted 4-2 to pass an amended plan that will hike adult fairs from $1.35 to $1.50. Discount fairs including seniors and the disabled, will go up a dime from 65 cents to 75 cents. Youth prices are currently, $1.35 and will be reduced to 75 cents.  

Transbay bus riders will see a sharpest fare increase. Commuting across the Bay Bridge will now be $3 instead of $2.50.  

The 10-ride book will undergo a slight makeover in addition to its increase. Instead of a book it will now be a prepaid electronic pass with each ride deducted from a magnetic card. The price will increase from $11.50 to $13, and the discount rate will go up from $5.50 to $6.50. The 31-day pass for adults will increase just a dollar, from $49 to $50, while the same pass for seniors and the disabled will go up two dollars to $15.  

AC Transit also created a day pass, which is a new option for East Bay bus riders. The $5 pass is good for unlimited rides and transfers within a 24 hour period. The discount rate for the new pass is $3. 

The first price change to go into effect will be the sharp decrease in price for the youth pass. Beginning August first passengers between the age of 5 and 17 will only pay $15 for the 31-day pass, down $12 from its old rate. A yearly pass of $150 dollars for youth riders is still in the works. It should be ready in late August, in time for the new school year, said AC Transit representative Mike Mills. The same yearly pass will be free for children who qualify for food vouchers. The criteria for eligibility of this pass are still being determined, and the transit service is still looking for support to subsidize the plan.  

AC Transit said that the objective of all the proposals is to generate more fare revenue because of a slump in sales tax revenues. 

Hollywood film and television production exodus continues

By GARY GENTILE, AP Business Writer
Saturday June 01, 2002

LOS ANGELES – A new study shows that the production of theatrical films continues to leave the country at an alarming pace. 

The amount of money spent to produce films in the United States dropped 17 percent from 1998 through 2001, while production in Canada grew by 144 percent, according to a study conducted by the Center for Entertainment Industry Data and Research. The research group receives support from Raleigh Studios, which has film facilities in Hollywood and Manhattan Beach. 

The report found that Canada adopted federal subsidies to attract foreign filmmakers in 1998 that became fully effective in 1999 and 2000. 

Canada has been very successful in luring television movie and commercial production, especially movies with budgets of around $10 million. 

The new study, which included data from 2001, shows that Canada is having success attracting larger budget films as well. 

About $750 million was spent to produce 29 films with budgets between $10.1 million and $50 million in Canada in 2001, the study shows. That compares with $309 million to produce 15 films in the same price range in 1998. 

While production of films in the same range also increased in the United States during the same period, the U.S. share of that lucrative market fell.

Live Oak Park will get a quake-resistant facelift

By Matt Liebowitz, Special to the Daily Planet
Saturday June 01, 2002

On Tuesday, the City Council approved a $552,000 facelift for Berkeley’s Live Oak Park and Recreation Center. 

The state-funded project is slated to begin construciton Aug. 28. Project designs began a year ago. 

The heavily-used north Berkeley park and recreation center were recently determined as not safe during an earthquake. The primary goal of the rebuilding venture is to provide a “seismic structural upgrade” that will improve safety for the community, said Lisa Caronna, director of Parks, Recreation, and Waterfront. 

“It’s deteriorated over the years due to deferred maintenance” Caronna said. “Our goal, first and foremost is to improve seismic safety,” she said, adding, “The park is desperately in need of a make-over.” 

Live Oak Park opened in 1916, and the Recreation Center in 1956. The park and Recreation center covers 5.5 acres off Shattuck Avenue and Berryman Street, and has a 200-capactiy social hall, two basketball courts, and lighted tennis and volleyball courts as well. It is one of three recreation centers in Berkeley, along with Frances Albrier Community Center and James Keeney Recreation Center. 

Dan Belson, associate civil engineer for the City of Berkeley is the project manager for the rebuilding project, officially called a “seismic retrofit.” 

“When dealing with an existing facility,” Belson said, “the first goal is to do work with the least amount of destruction to the building.” 

Belson outlined the architectural plans for the project, which involves modifying the existing walls, not tearing them down, to provide enough resistance for an earthquake. “We will strengthen the walls to act as one,” Belson said.  

Belson specified three rooms of the recreation center – the Fireside room, Activity room, and Game room – as areas in which windows will be replaced by walls to be tied into the foundation, the existing walls, and the roof to provide more strength. 

“We use the 1906 earthquake as a model to determine the maximum probable force a building can withstand,” Belson said. He explained that seismic upgrade projects such as this one build around that model. 

Though earthquake-proofing is at the top of the construction agenda, the rebuilding will also improve handicapped accessibility to the recreation center on the Shattuck Avenue side. It will open a skylight in the corridor, improve the mechanical and electrical systems and provide internal repairs. Included in the plan are a more usable kitchen and basic renovations such as painting.  

Belson said the project will take six months to complete. An expansion is not part of the rebuilding project. 

Live Oak Park and Recreation Center houses a variety of year-round programs, everything from after-school programs and a Teen Club, to puppy training, swing dancing and Japanese Taiko drumming. It can also be reserved and rented out for special events. 

“It is great for North Berkeley to have this,” said Caronna. After the rebuilding, Caronna is confident about Live Oak’s role in Berkeley. 

“It will be a much more welcoming environment for the community,” she said. 

The contract has been awarded to Angotti and Reilly of San Francisco. The money for the project is coming from Prop. 12, a bond measure passed at the state level that granted $500,000 for the project. Funding also came from the city’s Capital Improvement Program, which pitched in $200,000.  

The Angotti and Reilly bid will leave the city with apprxoiamtely $148,000 left over from the original grant, approved by voters in 2000. 

Four slightly injured when LA-bound train hits truck

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

NEW IBERIA, La. — Four people were slightly injured Friday when an Amtrak train heading to Los Angeles ran into a truck that was stuck on railroad tracks in rural Iberia Parish. 

The conductor, one of his assistants and two train passengers were treated at area hospitals after the accident at about 4:30 p.m., state police spokesman Will Williams said. They were not identified. 

The truck driver, Sherwin J. Neal of Houma, was crossing the tracks between New Iberia and Cade when the trailer that was hitched to his truck got stuck, Williams said. Neal fled the truck when he saw the train coming. 

Williams said Neal will probably be ticketed for obstruction of a railway. 

A portion of state Highway 182 was closed for more than four hours as emergency crews worked to clean up debris, pipe and diesel fuel from the scene, Williams said. 

The train originated in Orlando, Fla., and remained at the accident scene late Friday. The train would continue on its route when a new conductor arrived, Williams said. 

Judge rules to stop credit card ‘warning’ law

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A federal judge ruled on Friday to stop the implementation of a law that would have required the nation’s biggest bankers to include credit card “warnings” in monthly customer statements. 

The ruling, handed out by U.S. District Judge Frank C. Damrell in Sacramento, comes three days before the law was set to go into effect. 

A group of high-powered financial corporations, including Chase Manhattan Bank USA, CitiBank and MNBA America Bank, filed the suit a month ago to stop the law that would require the companies to warn customers about how long it takes to pay off balances by just paying the minimum monthly payment. 

The ruling comes as a shock to many consumer advocate groups who worked on the bill, signed by Gov. Gray Davis last year, who say the credit card companies never raised any of these concerns before, even though they actively participated in designing the legislation. 

“We’re disappointed,” said Hallye Jordan, spokeswoman for Attorney General Bill Lockyer, named as a co-defendant in the case with the state Department of Consumer Affairs. “A good consumer law is postponed as a result of the bankers waiting to file a 11th-hour lawsuit over a law they helped negotiate.” 

At least a dozen corporate lawyers appeared in court on Friday to argue the law would interfere with interstate banking, which is illegal under federal law. 

The new law would have required the companies to send the warnings only to customers who make just the minimum payment for six months in a row. Credit card companies that have monthly payments of 10 percent or more of the entire balance are exempt. 

Howard N. Cayne, an attorney for the Washington D.C.-based firm representing the banks, said that because adding the warnings would be costly, banks would have no other choice than to increase their minimum monthly payments. States are not allowed to pass laws that interfere with monthly payment schedules or interest. 

“National bank powers trump the state law,” Douglas Jordan, senior counsel for the U.S. Comptroller of the Currency, told the judge. 

Although Damrell scolded the plaintiffs for waiting until the last minute to file the lawsuit, he said he had “serious concerns” about the law. 

He ordered both sides to research the issue and told the bankers to perform a cost-benefit analysis to prove the warnings would be burdensome. Both parties will turn in their reports in October and the case will be reheard on Nov. 8. 

Mars Rocks?

Saturday June 01, 2002

Do we have any Mars rocks on Earth? Perhaps. No spacecraft has brought back rock samples from Mars like the ones astronauts brought back from the Moon. But some Mars rocks might have made their way to Earth on their own. Scientists have found about a dozen rocks on Earth that might be meteorites from Mars. These are pieces of the planet that were chipped off by a collision with a space rock long ago. The rocks match samples of Martian soil analyzed by the Viking landers. Some scientists think that one such meteorite, found in Antarctica, might even contain fossils of tiny organisms called bacteria — but, as often happens, other scientists disagree.

Apple Computer executives’ stock selling just before financial falls

By May Wong, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SAN JOSE — Twice within the last two years, Apple Computer Inc. executives sold company stock worth millions of dollars just weeks before Apple warned of disappointing financial results. Each earnings warning sent shares tumbling. 

While the sales could have an innocent explanation, analysts consider them unusual because at no other point during the period did any other clusters of large sell-offs by Apple executives occur. 

Big stock sales among executives are common, especially in the high-tech sector, where stock options are often a major part of compensation. 

But insider-trading analysts consider the Apple executives’ sales unusual because the people involved, though they were mostly exercising stock options, tend to be less active stock sellers. 

“These sells seem to be well-timed,” said Lon Gerber, director of insider research at Thomson Financial, coming as they did on the eve of two of three Apple earnings warnings over a period that began in August 2000. 

“It’s always a bit suspicious” when executives sell before a warning, said Martin Friedman, director of research at Friedman, Billings, Ramsey & Co. Inc. 

The Cupertino-based computer maker defended the sales, which were questioned in a column last week on a Web site for Mac enthusiasts called Resexcellence.com. 

Apple denied any notion of impropriety. 

“I can assure you that no executive would have exercised options had they believed we would not meet our original guidance for the quarter,” Fred Anderson, Apple’s chief financial officer, said in a written statement. 

Anderson, one of the executives who sold stock prior to the warnings, refused further comment. So did all the others after attempts by The Associated Press to reach each individually. 

The biggest flurry of sales — 1.9 million shares worth more than $49 million — occurred between April 22 and May 31, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings, and were executed by Anderson and five other executives: senior vice president of applications Sina Tamaddon; senior vice president and general counsel Nancy Heinen; senior vice president of software engineering Avie Tevanian; senior vice president of finance Peter Oppenheimer.

Nothing PC about new video game ‘State of Emergency’

By William Schiffmann, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Parents, lock up the children. Retailers, check those IDs. Perhaps the most politically incorrect video game ever created is for sale this minute, threatening the very foundations of our Republic. 

“State of Emergency,” from Vis Interactive and Rockstar, will turn your PlayStation 2 into the bloodstained scene of a massacre unlike any you’ve ever seen. 

Critics have decried SOE almost since it was announced last year, with pundits comparing the gory violence to any number of recent urban riots. 

Of course, there have been other games where everyone was a potential victim, including the very popular Grand Theft Auto III. 

SOE takes it a step further. 

Both games use missions as a basis for the beatdowns that follow. SOE’s 175 missions, set in four areas of Capitol City, are for the most part pathetically easy to complete, with points given for totally random destruction. Smashing windows, for instance, piles up hundreds of points per pane. 

The feeling of total anarchy and panic is beautifully captured in SOE. Enter a mall and hundreds of people are racing everywhere at top speed or falling to the ground, cowering in terror. They certainly have plenty to fear, as heavily armed cops, gangs of thugs and black-suited “Corporation” goons are everywhere, quashing revolution. 

Your characters — two are available from the start, with three more available as you progress — are handy with fists and feet. Weapons are available, scattered around each arena or torn from the dying fingers of your victims. Machine guns, Molotov cocktails, swords, bats, clubs, chairs — whatever you can find can be used to make the slaughter more efficient. 

You do lose points for offing innocent civilians, but it’s almost impossible to avoid it. 

Also lying around are health boosts and little clocks to extend your time. Both are crucial to your success, so don’t pass any by. 

The story line revolves around opposition to the “Corporation,” which took over after big business was given a free hand in 2010. Growing unrest led Corporation bigwigs to declare a state of emergency and turn their goons loose on the populace. 

A bizarre story, but one that conspiracy theorists are already predicting. 

Graphics get a B. Not only are they full of detail and nicely colored, but there are so many of them. The screen is usually jammed with dozens of people, all running and waving their arms and scurrying in a million directions. A great job just getting all those folks on your TV. 

Control earns a B. The combat portion works well, but moving your character to face enemies attacking from different directions isn’t always as smooth as it might be. Some controls serve double duty; after you’ve knocked somebody down, pushing the punch buttons lets you stomp and batter the fallen body as blood squirts from the wounds. How tasteful. 

Sound gets a C+. The weapons sounds are adequate and the voices are acceptable, although the comments get very repetitive. The soundtrack is routine, with no “name” performers. 

Give “State of Emergency” a B. It breaks no new ground and is about as deep as a dimple, but for the young male audience for which it was designed, it’s pure gold. 

Parents, here’s your chance to act responsibly. “State of Emergency” carries an M rating, for ages 17 and older, and it is well deserved. This game should not fall into little hands under any circumstances. 


On The Net: www.rockstargames.com/stateofemergency www.visentertainment.com 

Nature’s Way issues recall after lead is found in capsules

Saturday June 01, 2002

SPRINGVILLE, Utah — Nature’s Way Products is recalling four lots of an herbal allergy-relief dietary supplement, saying Friday that excessive amounts of lead were found in the product. 

The product, Nettle, is sold in 100-capsule white bottles that come with green lids. The tainted pills were distributed nationwide, mostly to health food retail outlets, from October to May. 

Affected lot numbers, which can be identified by numbers printed on the bottom of each bottle, are 131237, 131238, 140738 and 215229. 

People who ingest high levels of lead, especially children, can suffer serious damage to the central nervous system. 

Nature’s Way said in a statement the product was found to have “excessive amounts of lead,” but company spokesman Gordon Walker couldn’t elaborate. 

“It varies by lot,” he said. 

Walker said the company wasn’t aware of any consumer health problems related to the discovery. 

The problem was traced to a single batch of raw material used in manufacturing the four affected lots. Walker said the company was investigating with a supplier to determine how the lead reached the product. 

Nature’s Way learned of the problem through the California Attorney General’s Office, which discovered it through a random testing program “within the last few weeks,” Walker said. 

Former Davis aide admits discussing contribution snafu

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A former technology aide to Gov. Gray Davis has admitted that he brought up the subject of campaign contributions with a salesman for a Silicon Valley company seeking a state contract. 

Vin Patel, who was fired as Davis’ interim e-government director Wednesday, says he brought up the fact that the company’s founder had made a contribution to former Republican gubernatorial candidate Richard Riordan. 

“I casually mentioned it to him, but I didn’t have the intention of creating any type of link” with the contract, Patel told the San Jose Mercury News. “If I did do something I apologize.” 

An unidentified source told the newspaper that Patel went on to suggest that the company, BEA Systems, wouldn’t be getting the contract. 

“I think he said words to the effect: It doesn’t look like we’ll be doing business with BEA,” the source said. 

A spokesman for BEA, Kevin McGuirk, said the company didn’t get the contract. 

“Vin Patel had publicly admitted to making a comment to our salesman about a ‘donation his boss made to Richard Riordan.’ We think this speaks for itself,” McGuirk said Friday. 

Davis spokeswoman Hilary McLean said no business was offered that contract because it hasn’t been granted yet. 

“And BEA does have other business with the state,” McLean said. She didn’t have specific information on those other deals. 

It’s the second time that a former Davis aide has been accused of putting pressure on a technology company about campaign contributions. 

Elias Cortez, the suspended director of the state Department of Information Technology, told a legislative committee last week that Patel’s predecessor as director of e-government, Arun Baheti, contacted an official with the Oracle Corp. to complain about campaign contributions to Republicans. 

Baheti said the allegations were an “absolute falsehood” and challenged Cortez to produce some evidence. 

Baheti was fired after he acted as an intermediary in delivering a $25,000 campaign contribution from Oracle to Davis.  





Home Matters

Making your aging parents’ home safer

The Associated Press The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Baby Boomers aren’t getting any younger, and neither are their parents. 

Its a fact of life that many Boomers must shoulder the responsibility to care for the homes of their elderly parents. 

Yet according to the Lowe’s Home Safety Council, more than simple upkeep is involved. Because the elderly are more at risk for accidents, safety is a major consideration. 

With the elderly being targets of much-publicized home-improvement scam artists, Lowe’s recommends you first build a list of home-improvement specialists you trust. This removes your parents from high-pressure negotiation tactics and puts you in control. It’s not a bad idea to schedule a regular walk through the home with your home-improvement expert to review what work needs to be done — and for how much money. 

Next, pay close attention to the safety aspects of the home. 

In particular, the Lowe’s Home Safety Council identifies certain items you should red-flag for immediate action: 

n Are steps protected by hand railings and nonskid surfaces? 

n Are area rugs backed by rubber or two-sided tape to reduce slippage? 

n Do all interior light bulbs have enough wattage to illuminate portions of the home? 

n Are exterior portions of the home adequately lighted? This applies both to security and general lighting. 

n Install motion detectors to kick on exterior floodlights and lamps in some interior rooms. 

n Install railings in baths and showers. 

n Consider railings along hallway walls. 

n Are cracks and gaps in paving and sidewalks filled and smoothed? 

n Is there enough attic insulation and are all windows weatherproofed? 

n Adding storm doors is a good idea to protect parents from drafts. 

n Install both smoke- and carbon-dioxide detectors. Check the batteries regularly. Locate a fire extinguisher near the kitchen, and make sure your parents know how to use it properly. 

n Ask trusted neighbors to keep an eye on the house. Give them your phone and e-mail addresses. 

“When you help your parents take important safety measures in their home, you are not only ensuring the safety of your parents, but of everyone who comes into contact with the home, including visitors and grandchildren,” explains David Oliver, Lowe’s Home Safety Council Executive Director. “These steps lead to a more comfortable, convenient and secure living environment for the entire family.” 

Simon firm drew above average fee from nonprofit

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

xSAN FRANCISCO — GOP gubernatorial candidate Bill Simon’s investment firm drew an above-average commission for overseeing the assets of his family’s nonprofit foundation, a newspaper reported Friday. 

The nonprofit’s tax forms show that William E. Simon & Sons charged $670,000 in fees to oversee an average $10.9 million in foundation assets in 2000, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Friday in its “Lazarus at Large” business column. That amounts to a 6.1 percent commission. 

The industry standard for a fund that size, according to independent money managers and accountants interviewed by the Chronicle, is about 1 percent. 

Simon spokesman Jeff Flint said the fee was high because Simon & Sons handles both investment management and administrative costs, including the salaries of six employees. He said the fee was reasonable in light of the $7.5 million in donations made by the William E. Simon Foundation in 2000. 

“Any characterization that the foundation was somehow enriching Bill is totally untrue,” Flint said. 

Simon has refused to release his personal tax returns, but the returns of nonprofit organizations are public documents. 

Money managers and accountants with experience in the field said the $670,000 paid to Simon & Sons was unusually high. 

“Does it really take (several) people to give away $7.5 million?” Ken Winans, a Novato money manager, asked the Chronicle. “It’s not like they gave away $700 million. I have a hard time believing it cost $670,000 to deal with a portfolio that size.” Flint said Friday that only $20,000 of the sum was for asset management. He said the remainder was for reimbursement of expenses to Simon & Sons, and the bulk of that — $442,000 — went to pay employee salaries, bonuses, benefits and payroll taxes. 





The ‘unfitted’ bathroom: make it functional

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Functional rooms like kitchens and baths typically are fitted with wall-hung cupboards and storage areas. 

Still, there’s plenty to be said for junking the wood-veneer boxes attached to your walls. The rewards of starting from scratch with a few attractive, functional dressers, tables and freestanding cabinets are worth it. 

Space you didn’t know you had is the most notable benefit of this design concept. According to British interior designer Johnny Grey, who focuses mainly on kitchen design, “An illusion of spaciousness (is) achieved by leaving space around each piece of furniture, rather than fitting cupboards from wall to wall.” This now-exposed wall area can host well-placed shelves and hooks for extra storage and display. Your room will be tailored to your specific needs and tastes in a way rooms full of factory-made storage spaces can’t. 

Home designers and those in the cabinet industry have gotten wise to this idea and have begun designing and manufacturing storage units that have the look of furniture and the ease of predesigned cabinets. The bath shown here features attractive vanity cupboards; dresser legs replace the flat-front toe space usually seen where the storage units meet the floors in baths and kitchens. Atop a matching set of drawers and cabinets is a tall, open-faced shelf secured to the wall, which reveals its contents — towels, photos and art — without shame.  

European Union ratifies global warming treaty

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

UNITED NATIONS — In a big boost to the global fight against climate change, the 15 nations in the European Union formally ratified the Kyoto Protocol on Friday and urged the United States to end its opposition to the treaty. 

The European Union has been in the forefront of the campaign to cut pollution that is warming the planet and the simultaneous ratifications by its members represented a major step toward the treaty’s entry into force. 

The ceremony also highlighted the Bush administration’s isolation as the only announced opponent of the 1997 accord. One by one, envoys from the 15 EU members presented the documents of ratification from their governments to U.N. legal adviser Hans Corell in the main press room at U.N. headquarters. 

EU Environment Commissioner Margot Wallstrom, who handed over a separate ratification from the organization itself, hailed the “historic moment for global efforts to combat climate change” and pointedly singled out the United States as the only country to reject the treaty. 

To take effect, the Kyoto accord must be ratified by 55 countries, but the ratifications must also include industrialized nations responsible for at least 55 percent of the 1990 levels of greenhouse gases blamed for heating up the atmosphere. 

The EU boosted the number of ratifications to about 70, topping the minimum needed, and pushed the treaty about halfway to the goal of 55 percent of the greenhouse gas pollution levels for it to enter into force. 

The EU, whose members produced 24.2 percent of emissions in 1990, represented the first major industrialized bloc to ratify the treaty. Before Friday, the vast majority of countries that had ratified were developing countries. 

The Kyoto Protocol was signed by the Clinton administration, but never ratified by the U.S. Senate. President Bush backed out of it last year, saying it would have cost the U.S. economy $400 billion and 4.9 million jobs. 

“The European Union urges the United States to reconsider its position and to return to and participate in the global framework for addressing climate change that this protocol provides,” Wallstrom said. 

Bush unveiled an alternative proposal to the Kyoto accord in February which he said would reduce greenhouse gases, curb pollution and promote energy efficiency. But Wallstrom argued that it will lead instead “to a significant increase of more than 30 percent above 1990 levels” of greenhouse gas emissions by 2012. 

With the United States, which was responsible for 36.1 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in 1990, opting out of the treaty, the EU said the support of Japan, which was responsible for 8.5 percent, and Russia, which was responsible for 17.4 percent, is crucial. 

The EU is pushing for the treaty to enter into force by the time the U.N. World Summit on Sustainable Development begins in Johannesburg in late August. 

Japan is expected to ratify next week but Wallstrom said Russia’s parliament may not ratify until the fall. 

The Kyoto Protocol aims to cut global emissions by 5.2 percent from their 1990 levels between 2008 and 2012. The EU must cut its emissions by 8 percent. 

Nasturtiums are pleasant nose twisters

By Lee Reich, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Most people envision waterlilies daubed on large canvases when they think of the artist Monet’s flowers. Nasturtiums are another possibility, for Monet planted them in abundance. They spilled out of beds into paths, frothing like ocean water on a beach to soften his garden’s edges. 

Nasturtiums are good flowers even for beginning gardeners. The large seeds germinate reliably, and do not need starting indoors for early bloom. Press a few seeds into the ground even now and you will be rewarded with nonstop bloom in a few weeks. The round, slightly bluish leaves are distinctive, making it easy to distinguish seedlings from weedlings. And once nasturtiums take off, they blanket the ground thickly enough to crowd out weeds. 

Nasturtium flowers come in bright reds and oranges and yellows, toned down by masses of foliage so as never to be too glaring. Be careful not to give nasturtiums too rich a soil, or the foliage will overgrow and hide too many of the blossoms. Dwarf varieties, growing only a foot or so high, are good for small window boxes or in pots. There also are semi-trailing types, which sprawl outward a couple of feet or more. Nasturtium can cover a fence if you plant a climbing type, which typically grows about 7 feet tall and has single, fragrant flowers. Climbing nasturtiums grasp to support with their twining leaf stalks, just as clematis vines do. 

Bright flowers and lush masses of pretty, round leaves are enough to ask for from any plant, but nasturtiums offer even more. You can eat them. Nasturtium flowers liven up salads with their color and peppery flavor. That peppery flavor, incidentally, gives the plant its name, which means “nose twister.” It will make your nose respond the way it does to mustard or radishes. 

Nasturtium is one of those plants that could be called a “supermarket” plant, because it provides such a variety of foods. If you tire of eating the flowers, eat the leaves, in sandwiches, chopped directly into salads, or mixed into butter to make a spicy spread. Pickled, the large seeds or seed pods make savory substitutes for capers (which are pickled buds of an unrelated Mediterranean bush).

India says border with Pakistan is stable for now

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

NEW DELHI, India — India’s defense minister insisted Friday the border with Pakistan was stable, even as Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz warned that a war between the South Asian rivals would be “somewhere between terrible and catastrophic.” 

Diplomatic pressure grew to avert another war between the nuclear-armed rivals, and the United States, Britain, New Zealand, Canada and Australia urged their citizens to consider leaving India. 

Indian officials played down fears of a conflict over disputed Kashmir, even as Pakistan pulled soldiers away from the Afghan border, where they had been helping the U.S.-led war on terrorism. Pakistani officials said they were considering moving the soldiers toward India. 

“There isn’t any change on the ground,” Indian Defense Minister George Fernandes told The Associated Press in Singapore, where he was attending an Asian defense conference. “The situation is stable.” 

Wolfowitz, who was also at the conference, said U.S. efforts to prevent war include both promises of incentives and warnings of punishments. He did not say what the incentives or punishments would be. 

“I don’t think we believe in exhortation alone,” Wolfowitz said. He said a war between the nuclear rivals would be “somewhere between terrible and catastrophic” and would destroy hard-earned improvements in U.S. relations with both countries. 

A top Indian military officer said Friday on condition of anonymity that the diplomatic pressure on both countries was unprecedented and playing a major role. 

President Bush announced Thursday that he would send Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld to the region next week. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage also is scheduled to visit Islamabad and New Delhi next week. 

Shelling continued Friday across the tense frontier separating India and Pakistan in Kashmir, the divided Himalayan region both nations claim and have fought two wars over. 

Pakistan’s military said Indian shelling killed one Pakistani and injured two others Friday. India said Pakistani shelling killed one border guard and four soldiers. In another incident, five Indian police were injured when suspected Islamic militants lobbed a grenade. 

Stock markets in India and Pakistan appeared to be taking the war fears in stride. The Bombay exchange’s key Sensex index has dipped by about 4 percent this year, while Pakistan’s KSE-100 index was actually up by 31 percent in the first five months of 2002. 

The rivals have about 1 million soldiers on high alert along their border, and Pakistan’s President Pervez Musharraf said he was considering moving more troops to Kashmir. 


Tip of the week

Saturday June 01, 2002

Pet stains not only are unsightly, but also often result in less-than-pleasant odors. A simple and effective way to get a pet stain out is to use a solution of 2 tablespoons of Spic-n-Span in 1 gallon of warm water — working the solution into the area with a cloth or sponge. Next, rinse the area with 1-half cup of white vinegar in 1 gallon of warm water. This will help to neutralize the detergent and prevent it from attracting dirt. Finally, blot the area with a dry towel to remove any excess dampness. Hard-hit areas might require professional steam-cleaning, replacement of the pad below, or even a bleaching of the concrete or wood substrate to kill the odor-causing bacteria. 

Gunman in deadly store rampage had remains in home

By Eugene Tong, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

LONG BEACH – Police struggled Friday to find the motive for a deadly shooting rampage in a neighborhood market by a gunman who was found to have the skeletal remains of two people in his home. 

Antonio Pineiro, 48, had no criminal record before he walked into the Top Valu Market and sprayed dozens of bullets from a .38-caliber revolver and a 9 mm semiautomatic handgun before he was killed by officers Thursday evening, police Lt. Bill Blair said. 

“We have not clearly established the motive,” Blair said. 

Neighbors said they hadn’t seen his parents for a year and that Pineiro had said they moved away. 

Shooting survivor Conrad Ibasco, 45, dragged his wife to safety after his 8-year-old daughter, Barbara, was shot in the head as mother and child stood in line at the checkout stand. 

“I heard three shots. I was at the produce aisle,” he said. “I ran over to my wife and I saw that my daughter was down.” 

“I said to my wife, ’Just leave Barbara. She’s going to be fine,’ but I knew she was dead.” 

Ibasco was grazed in the left leg and his wife, Meryna, was wounded in the left arm. He pulled her into an aisle and they cowered there until police arrived. 

Also killed was store clerk Marcela Perez, 38, of Long Beach. 

People were running from the store when police arrived to confront the gunman, who was standing near the checkout stands. Pineiro fired at least one shot at officers but missed and was wounded several times by return fire, Blair said. All told, more than 40 shots were exchanged, he said. 

The Ibascos were treated at a hospital and released. Also treated for wounds and released were Richard Coleman, 32, of Long Beach and Concepcion Henriquez, 58, of Long Beach. 

The shooting left the market spattered with blood. But it was cleaned up and open for business Friday. 

Pineiro lived behind the store in a working-class part of the port city 25 miles south of Los Angeles. The Ibascos lived two blocks away. 

On Friday, Mrs. Ibasco lay sleeping on the couch in their living room, which bore a cross and religious pictures above a mantelpiece covered with religious dolls. Ibasco chain-smoked as he talked with reporters. 

“I just leave it to God,” he said. “Sometimes evil triumphs over good. I know it’s hard but I have to accept it.” 

Ibasco said his daughter, a smiling girl with dark bangs, loved the “Harry Potter” movie, and Ibasco said she watched it five times in a row after he recently bought a copy for her. 

“She was active in class. She was outgoing. She didn’t know the word shyness,” he said. 

Scattered in her bedroom were “Hello Kitty” stuffed dolls. A construction-paper sign with her name was taped to her door. 

In Pineiro’s condominium, police found the decomposed bodies of two people. They were discovered on a bed. 

They had been dead perhaps more than a year, Blair estimated, and their ages, genders and cause of death were yet to be determined. 

Authorities suspected the bones might be those of Pineiro’s parents, who vanished about a year ago. 

Residents of the condominium complex said Pineiro told some people that they had moved to Miami, others that they had returned to Cuba. 

Pineiro was described as a loner who didn’t socialize. 

“He never says hi or talks to anybody,” said Anthony Martin, 20. “He seems to come and go very quietly.” 

Derek Duncan, 48, lived in the complex for two years. He said Pineiro rarely spoke to anyone and was only seen getting the mail or smoking cigarettes by the back gate, which opens into the market parking lot. 

“We barbecue down here, and he wouldn’t come out,” he said. “He just kept to himself.” 

Blair said Pineiro had no prior criminal record but had filed a police report as a burglary victim. He did not provide details.

Active Jewish community leader dies

By Chris Nichols, Daily Planet Staff
Saturday June 01, 2002

Emmie Vida, an active leader in the Berkeley Jewish community died Monday of natural causes at the age of 93. Vida, who along with her husband Rabbi George Vida and their two children fled Czechoslovakia during the Nazi occupation of World War II, dedicated much of her life to helping and sharing history with others.  

After moving to Berkeley more than 20 years ago, Vida assumed a number of leadership roles at Congregation Beth El. She became a facilitator of the congregation’s popular Torah Study and also a member of the Sisterhood of the Synagogue. In addition, Vida was an active member of the local Jewish Community Center and helped support Hadassa, an international social service organization. 

Local community members describe Vida as a cheerful, welcoming and loving person. “She really was a saint to her community,” said Marian Magid, former president of Beth El. Vida always encouraged new members at the congregation and participated in a number of workshops and youth programs says Rabbi Ferenc Arj of Beth El. 

“She would always encourage people to speak up by saying that there were no silly questions only silly answers,” Arj said. 

With a love for history and learning, Vida became a short story writer and storyteller, chronicling the life of her family as survivors of the Holocaust. She was the subject of an interview for Steven Spielberg’s Shoah Project, a series of videotaped testimonials from survivors of the Holocaust. 

According to Arj, Vida was a very studious individual and continued learning throughout her life. Arj also says that Vida participated in congregation activities up until the very end of her life. 

Vida is survived by her daughter, Ruth Meltsner of El Cerrito, her son, Henry Vida of Gum Spring, her brother Leo Koppel and sister Karola Loeb. She is also survived by five grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. 

Memorial contributions can be made to Hadassah or Congregation Beth El. Vida will be buried in Paramus, New Jersey with her husband, who died in 1989. A gathering to celebrate her life is scheduled for Sunday at 10 a.m. at Congregation Beth El. 


Grid operators deny senator’s accusations of manipulation

By Jennifer Coleman The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Asked state energy traders to buy unnecessary power at above-market rates 


SACRAMENTO – The operators of the state’s power grid said Friday a state senator’s accusation that they manipulated California’s energy market is “wholly untrue.” 

The Independent System Operator said grid operators were reacting to a transmission line problem in November 2001 when it asked state energy traders to buy unnecessary power at above-market rates, which the state later had to sell at a loss. 

State Sen. Joe Dunn, D-Santa Ana, called that a request for the state to schedule “fictitious” energy demands. 

The ISO Board of Governors has formed a special committee to review Dunn’s allegations, said Charles Robinson, ISO’s general counsel. 

Though the report released Friday was a preliminary report, Robinson said he’s “pretty confident based on, what management has been able to determine that there’s nothing to the allegation of market manipulation.” 

Robinson said the scrutiny of the grid by Dunn’s committee is justified because of the scope of the energy crisis, but added, “I would prefer a process where the conclusions are reached at the end of the investigation, rather than the beginning.” 

Dunn, chairman of the Senate Select Committee to Investigate Price Manipulation of the Wholesale Energy Market, called the preliminary report “the same-old, same-old nonsense from the ISO. It’s a lot of technical talk that doesn’t get to the core issue.” 

Dunn’s committee released a transcript of a November 2001 telephone call between ISO schedulers and state power buyers at the Department of Water Resources. 

DWR traders thought it was an “unusual request,” and asked ISO to call back on a recorded line, said DWR spokesman Oscar Hidalgo. DWR agreed to sell some power it had already purchased in order to arrange a sale directly with two generators. 

The ISO said maintenance on a major transmission line in Southern California required additional energy to be produced in both the north and south areas of the state. 

Federal regulators had required generators to keep their plants operating at a minimum level, but ISO officials were concerned that some generators weren’t obeying that order. 

In the report, ISO officials say they had three choices for dealing with the transmission glitch: buy power in the spot market, arrange ahead of time for additional power plants to be operating, or resort to rolling blackouts. 

There was no guarantee that there would be power available in the spot market, and rolling blackouts can have “health, safety and economic risks,” the report said. 

When ISO attempted to order two power plants to come online, one company, Reliant Energy, refused to comply unless it had a guarantee it would be paid, the ISO said. Another power company reported maintenance problems with its plant. 

To force the plants to come online, the ISO asked DWR to purchase energy directly from the energy producers. 

Dunn said that amounts to grid operators “gaming the gamers” in the electricity market. 

ISO chief executive officer Terry Winter should have complained to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which ordered the generators to comply with ISO’s must-run orders, Dunn said.

Judge rules to stop credit card ‘warning’

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A federal judge Friday temporarily blocked the implementation of a law that would require the nation’s biggest bankers to include credit card payment “warnings” in monthly customer statements. 

The ruling, handed down by U.S. District Judge Frank C. Damrell, came three days before the law was set to go into effect. 

A group of high-powered financial corporations, including Chase Manhattan Bank USA, CitiBank and MNBA America Bank, filed a lawsuit a month ago to stop the law, which would require the companies to warn customers about how long it takes to pay off credit card balances by just making the minimum monthly payment. 

The ruling came as a shock to many consumer advocate groups, which said the credit card companies never raised any concerns before, even though they actively participated in designing the legislation. 

“We’re disappointed,” said Hallye Jordan, spokeswoman for Attorney General Bill Lockyer, named as a co-defendant in the case with the state Department of Consumer Affairs.

American moviegoers want patriotic films, poll shows

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Adults want to see patriotic themes, heroism of  

Sept. 11 airplane victims  


LOS ANGELES – Moviegoers want to see films with patriotic themes and wouldn’t shy away from movies dealing squarely with the events of Sept. 11, a new poll shows. 

A poll conducted for The Hollywood Reporter showed that 76.3 percent of the 1,041 adults surveyed are interested in seeing a film portraying the heroism of passengers on doomed airliners on Sept. 11. 

Respondents also displayed a high interest in movies depicting the personal stories of World Trade Center survivors and the hunt for Osama bin Laden and his terrorist group. 

A smaller number, 53.4 percent, said they would be interested in scenes recreating the events of Sept. 11. 

The poll, taken in March and titled “Hollywood & Politics,” also showed that 76.5 percent of respondents disapprove of presenters and winners at the Academy Awards expressing their political beliefs.

Manson follower Leslie Van Houten denied parolev

By Linda Deutsch, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

FRONTERA — A parole board refused Friday to grant freedom to former Charles Manson follower Leslie Van Houten after an emotional hearing focusing on the cruelty of the cult killings that landed her in prison 33 years ago. 

The ruling came after a prosecutor and the family of victims Leno and Rosemary La Bianca urged the Board of Prison Terms never to grant parole to the now 52-year-old woman who was described as a model prisoner. 

“This was a cruel and calculated murder and a matter that demonstrates a disregard for human suffering,” said Sharon Lawin, the board commissioner who chaired the hearing. 

Earlier, Van Houten pleaded for her freedom, telling the board she will always bear the sorrow of the murders. 

“One of the hardest things in dealing with having contributed to murder is that there’s no restitution, there’s no making it right,” she said. 

Van Houten was in handcuffs and shackled around her waist. She wore a gray sweat shirt and sweat pants. 

Defense attorney Christie Webb said Van Houten was disappointed, frustrated and saddened by the ruling. 

“It’s very difficult to be a 52-year-old woman, a decent person and to be treated in that room like the 19-year-old cult victim she was,” Webb said. “It’s very difficult to hear someone say you should be dead.” 

Earlier in the hearing, Louis Smaldino, the nephew of Leno La Bianca, told the board that Van Houten should stay in prison for the rest of her life. 

“Miss Van Houten should already be dead for her part in these unprovoked murders,” he said. “Society has been very merciful.” 

Turning to Van Houten, he said, “There is no way to make it right. Serve your life sentence with acceptance of what you have done.” 

It was Van Houten’s 14th appearance before the parole board. She had been considered the most likely of the Manson followers to win parole after a judge ruled last month that the board had repeatedly failed to give her guidance on what she could do to make herself suitable for release. 

Nevertheless, Van Houten was denied parole for at least two more years after the board determined she had not fully expressed remorse. 

Lawin said the board was particularly swayed by the fact that the killings were part of a grand plan by Manson to start a race war. 

The board did commend Van Houten’s behavior in prison — from working as a chapel clerk to making audio tapes to help other inmates. 

“These positive aspects of her behavior, however, do not yet outweigh the factors of unsuitability,” Lawin said. 

Lawin recommended Van Houten for continued therapy to better understand the enormity of her crime and its impact. 

Van Houten was a 19-year-old disciple of Manson in the summer of 1969 when she participated in the stabbing deaths of the La Biancas in their home in the Los Feliz section of Los Angeles. 

They were among nine Los Angeles-area victims slain by the cult of drugged-out followers. Prosecutors said Manson was trying to incite a race war that he believed was prophesied in the Beatles’ song “Helter Skelter.” 

Van Houten was not present when followers of Manson killed actress Sharon Tate and four others at the actress’ Beverly Hills mansion. Manson was not at the home, either. 

Van Houten, Manson, his chief lieutenant Charles “Tex” Watson, and two other women, Susan Atkins and Patricia Krenwinkle, were convicted and sentenced to death for their part in the Tate-La Bianca murders. 

The sentences were later commuted to life when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the death penalty in the 1970s. All five are still behind bars. 

During the hearing, Van Houten spoke quietly and directly as she recounted the horrifying facts of the murders that Manson directed. 

She recalled that Watson was in the living room killing Leno La Bianca and she was in the bedroom with Rosemary La Bianca. 

Asked if she had stabbed the woman, Van Houten said, “Yes I did in the lower torso approximately 14 to 16 times.” 

Earlier this month, Superior Court Judge Bob N. Krug admonished the parole board for flatly turning Van Houten down every time based solely on the crime. 

Such decisions, he said, ignore Van Houten’s accomplishments in prison and turn her life sentence into life without parole, in violation of the law. 

In addition, Krug said that Van Houten had successfully completed every rehabilitation program offered in prison and that her psychiatric evaluations indicate that she is not a present danger to society and should be found suitable for parole. 

Man with wired jaw wasn’t allowed clippers on plane

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

XSAN FRANCISCO – A U.S. Army lieutenant whose jaw is wired shut from a bullet wound he received in Afghanistan said screeners at San Francisco International Airport denied him permission to pass through security with wire clippers used to snap open his jaw in an emergency. 

Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman Deirdre O’Sullivan said the agency is investigating the incident. 

Lt. Greg Miller, a combat medic and member of a special forces patrol and a Purple Heart recipient, was shot in Kandahar in April. The bullet passed through his jaw, severing nerves and leaving him without feeling in his mouth. 

He said his jaw was wired shut at a hospital in Germany, and his doctor issued him a pair of wire clippers to carry at all times in case he became sick and needed to open his jaw to avoid choking. 

Miller had flown to the Bay Area to visit his mother, the administrative assistant to the superintendent of the Millbrae School District. 

Miller, who lives in College Station, Texas, said officials at the Easterwood Airport there checked out the wire cutters before he boarded the plane to San Francisco via Dallas. Miller said they made a series of calls, then tagged the cutters with a code that security personnel could look up to see that the cutters were not a prohibited item. 

But O’Sullivan said the cutters are on the list of prohibited items.

Companies warn about ‘Like Mike’ electrocution scene

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Electricity companies have issued a warning about the upcoming movie “Like Mike” because the plot involves a pair of sneakers a boy retrieves from a power line. 

The family comedy stars rapper Lil’ Bow Wow as a teenager who gains magical basketball-playing abilities after lightning strikes him while he is unsnagging the shoes. 

Instead of constricting his muscles, searing his flesh, burning his lungs and stopping his heart, the extreme electrical current gives the boy the ability to compete in the NBA. 

“We’re worried that kids are going to see this and get electrocuted,” said Jason Alderman, spokesman for Pacific Gas and Electric Co. “The reality is if you touch a power line like that you’ll be seriously injured at best, and at worst die.” 

Southern California Edison and Progress Energy Inc. have also issued warnings about the movie. 

Alderman said PG&E has asked the film’s studio, 20th Century Fox, to either change the scene or add a disclaimer, but most of the thousands of prints for the July 3 debut are already completed and shipped. 

“The scene is clearly not meant to be real or present behavior to be emulated by youngsters,” said Fox spokeswoman Flo Grace. “The film in no way advocates taking dangerous risks of any kind, including touching power lines.” 

Fire spreads over 1,500 acres in San Bernardino National Forest

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SAN BERNARDINO – A wildfire raced out of control over 1,500 acres in the San Bernardino National Forest just north of the city Friday, destroying a wing of a 1930s-era hotel, authorities said. No injuries were reported. 

The fire was burning north, climbing higher into the San Bernardino Mountains, where small communities and resorts are located. Air tankers released loads of fire retardant on the brushy slopes in an attempt to corral the blaze. 

“I’m seeing flames — 30-foot flames — and my deck is covered completely in ash,” said Jamie Mariani, a server at the Cliffhanger Restaurant in Crestline, as she watched the fire burn in the forest on the mountain slopes to the south. 

No residents were evacuated, but officials urged caution, said U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Jolene Cassano. Weather was windy and warm, in the mid-80s. 

The fire burned the west wing of the Arrowhead Springs Hotel and destroyed a bathhouse and three other maintenance buildings nearby, Cassano said. 

The former resort at the 2,000-foot-level of the mountains is now used by a theology school. 

The fire erupted around 11:45 a.m. near Waterman Canyon and state Highway 18, about 60 miles east of Los Angeles. 

Louis Blumberg, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, said a training burn had been scheduled for the area on Friday. He could not say if the exercise caused the wildfire. 

“We have an investigation going right now and we don’t want to prejudice it,” Blumberg said. 

“At first I thought it was really gray and cloudy outside, but I stepped out and saw it was a big cloud of smoke rising over the buildings,” said Kathy Sharpe, 48, who manages a steakhouse on Waterman Canyon Road near the hotel. 

“It’s an unusually windy day, windier than normal,” she said. 

Firefighters were dispatched from the CDF, San Bernardino and Riverside County fire departments. 

Dorie Reeder, 40, a manager of a motel in Crestline, said she was confident that the CDF could handle the fire. 

“We don’t panic until someone comes to the door and says ’let’s go,”’ she said.

Cut in anti-smoking efforts because of budget crunch

By Sandy Yang, Tje Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

LOS ANGELES — The state plans to hack $61 million from anti-smoking efforts and the first parts to go will be regional centers set up to work with cities, schools and other groups — a move advocates say can only hurt the children of California. 

Many of the anti-tobacco programs were doomed when California came up $23.6 billion short. Although the Legislature was still wrestling with the budget going into the weekend, workers at many of the 11 regional centers had already moved furniture out of their offices. 

The regional centers — the oldest was 14-years-old — employed advisers who helped cities, counties, schools and community groups with questions, campaigns, studies and other anti-tobacco campaigns. 

“This will drastically hurt our efforts to continue to reduce smoking,” said Paul Knepprath, vice president of government relations of the American Lung Association of California. “We have low smoking rates for kids, but it doesn’t stop tobacco companies from swooping in and getting youngsters addicted by fancy advertising.” 

Ken August, spokesman for the Department of Health Services, said he doesn’t expect the cuts to cause an increase in the number of California smokers. 

“I would agree that California success is based on three main parts, one of which is the great work done on the local level,” he said. “Although California is looking at budget belt-tightening, California has gone through fundamental change in smoking.” 

After the cuts, California will still be spending more on anti-tobacco efforts than any other state, August said. The state has been a leader when it comes to smoke-free restaurants, stadiums and workplaces, he added. 

There was $134.5 million set aside in the 2001-2002 budget for tobacco education and cessation, but only $88.3 million has been tentatively allotted for the coming fiscal year, August said. 

That drop is compounded by a decrease in money from 1988’s Proposition 99, which imposed a 25-cent tax on every pack of cigarettes, because fewer cigarettes are being sold. 

The state plans to continue programs that target young adults and smoking cessation such as the California Smokers’ Helpline, August said. 

Still, advocates fear that the cuts will push anti-tobacco efforts backwards. 

“We hope we don’t see an upswing in smoking,” said Patricia Etem, executive director of L.A. Link, one of the 11 regional centers. “Even the department knows that strong coalitions at the local levels are essential. If we weren’t here, there’s no impetus for the city to make sure the laws are enforced.” 

One of the most successful programs run through the centers involved students and youth campaigns.

Judge says EPA can set runoff limits for rivers

By David Kravets The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Contaminated runoff threatens water quality  


SAN FRANCISCO – A federal appeals court ruled Friday that the Environmental Protection Agency can set limits on pollution of rivers from logging and agricultural runoff. 

The ruling upholds a federal judge’s interpretation of certain provisions of the 1972 Clean Water Act that the EPA began enforcing in 1991 because of pressure from environmental groups. 

Those provisions allow the EPA to force states to come up with ways to reduce pollution in rivers and waterways contaminated solely by runoff, as opposed to industrial waste or sewage. Before 1991, the EPA set pollutant limits only on discharges from “point sources,” like drain pipes from sewage systems and industrial plants. 

The EPA says runoff or “non-point source” pollution has become the leading threat to water quality in the United States. 

States decide how to achieve the limits, through restrictions on logging, road-building and other practices that cause erosion and chemical runoff. States can lose federal funds if they fail to require reductions. 

Farming groups in the case decided Friday by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals argued that the government was only authorized to limit pollution from industrial waste and sewage systems. 

The suit was filed by two Mendocino County landowners who were joined by the American Farm Bureau Federation and state and local farm organizations. 

The landowners, Guido and Betty Pronsolino, managed forest property along the Garcia River in southern Mendocino County, one of 17 rivers on California’s North Coast classified as “substandard” by the EPA in 1992. The agency said the river’s coho salmon and steelhead populations have been severely damaged by sediment from many years of logging. 

When the Pronsolinos sought a logging permit, they were required to reduce erosion, including leaving certain large trees uncut. 

The couple said the measures, which would cost them $750,000, were not required under EPA guidelines. The appeals court disagreed. 

Voucher bill introduced in response to ruling by Supreme Court

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A Republican senator is hoping the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that school vouchers are constitutional will jump-start a movement to get vouchers passed in California. 

Following Thursday’s ruling, Sen. Ray Haynes, R-Riverside, introduced a bill that could pave the way for parents to start receiving publicly funded coupons that could be used to pay for private school tuition. 

In its 5-4 ruling upholding a tuition-subsidy program in Cleveland, the Supreme Court said vouchers are constitutional if parents retain a wide choice of where to send their children. 

Opponents had argued that since the overwhelming majority of private schools have religious affiliations, voucher programs result in state funding going to church schools. 

Haynes said in a statement that the Supreme Court’s decision “finally ends the debate over whether offering our families true choice is somehow a violation of the Constitution.” 

Haynes admitted that a bill introduced this late in the legislative session will have a difficult time making its way through both houses. 

But time is not all that is working against Hayne’s voucher bill. California voters have twice rejected school vouchers, including a 2000 ballot measure that would have authorized $4,000 vouchers to allow as many as 6.6 million California children to attend private schools. 

California Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine Eastin said Thursday that she doesn’t think the ruling will affect California. 

“California is not a voucher state,” she said. “When you start giving money to private schools, you have to hold them to much higher standards. Some private schools don’t even want to be in that game.” 

But Haynes said he expects this bill, unlike his three previous attempts to get vouchers approved, will gain support from lawmakers.

Former Davis aide admits discussing contributions

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

xSACRAMENTO – A former technology aide to Gov. Gray Davis has admitted that he brought up the subject of campaign contributions with a salesman for a Silicon Valley company seeking a state contract. 

Vin Patel, who was fired as Davis’ interim e-government director Wednesday, says he brought up the fact that the company’s founder had made a contribution to former Republican gubernatorial candidate Richard Riordan. 

“I casually mentioned it to him, but I didn’t have the intention of creating any type of link” with the contract, Patel told the San Jose Mercury News. “If I did do something I apologize.” 

An unidentified source told the newspaper that Patel went on to suggest that the company, BEA Systems, wouldn’t be getting the contract. 

“I think he said words to the effect: It doesn’t look like we’ll be doing business with BEA,” the source said. 

A spokesman for BEA, Kevin McGuirk, said the company didn’t get the contract. 

“Vin Patel had publicly admitted to making a comment to our salesman about a ‘donation his boss made to Richard Riordan.’ We think this speaks for itself,” McGuirk said Friday. 

It’s the second time that a former Davis aide has been accused of putting pressure on a technology company about campaign contributions. 

Elias Cortez, the suspended director of the state Department of Information Technology, told a legislative committee last week that Patel’s predecessor as director of e-government, Arun Baheti, contacted an official with the Oracle Corp. to complain about campaign contributions to Republicans. 

Baheti said the allegations were an “absolute falsehood” and challenged Cortez to produce some evidence. 

Baheti was fired after he acted as an intermediary in delivering a $25,000 campaign contribution from Oracle to Davis. Administration officials said the move violated a rule barring aides to the Democratic governor from accepting campaign donations. 

The donation was delivered to Baheti by an Oracle lobbyist a few days after the Redwood Shores company signed a $95 million, no-bid contract with the state last May. 

The deal was supposed to save the state up to $111 million through volume purchasing and maintenance of database software, but the state auditor says the agreement could end up costing the state up to $41 million more than if it had relied on its previous software supply arrangements. 

Oracle strongly disputes the auditor’s conclusions. 

Meanwhile, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Friday that California agencies have signed more than 200 contracts for amounts of $2 million or more without competitive bidding since Davis took office in January 1999. 

The contracts range from $4.7 million in public relations services for the California Children and Families Commission to $14 million worth of temporary nursing services in state prisons. 

Davis has ordered a ban on most new no-bid state contracts worth at least $100,000. The executive order will remain in effect until the state adopts regulations to ensure “open and competitive bidding to the greatest extent possible in awarding state contracts,” the governor said. 

Davis has also told former Sacramento County District Attorney Steve White, now the inspector general of the state Youth and Adult Correction Agency, to investigate contracting procedures on state technology projects. 

Bill pushing for more information on food labels killed by committee

By Jennifer Coleman, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SACRAMENTO — An Assembly committee killed a bill Friday that would have required food processors to disclose levels of artery-clogging trans fatty acids in processed foods. 

The bill, by Sen. Debra Bowen, would have taken effect in January 2005 and would have been nullified if the federal Food and Drug Administration created nationwide labeling requirements. 

The measure got only two votes in the Assembly Agriculture Committee, with five members voting against it and eight members abstaining. 

The labels would have included the amount of trans fatty acids — also known as trans fat — which is the product of hydrogenation. That’s the process of adding hydrogen to liquid oils to solidify them in order to add shelf life and flavor stability to food. 

Food processors opposed the labeling because it would create a California-only label and would be a distributing nightmare, said Jeff Boese, chief executive officer of the California League of Food Processors. 

“I haven’t heard any opposition to the idea, the problem has been separate labels,” Boese said. 

The FDA has been debating trans fat labeling for six years, but has yet to require food processors to disclose how much trans fat is in foods. 

“It’s death by delay there,” Bowen said, referring to the FDA’s lack of action. “And in the meantime, there’s actual harm being suffered by Californians not getting the information they need about what’s in their food.” 

Trans fat is found in small amounts in some meats, but more often is found in convenience and fast foods like doughnuts, french fries and chips, said Elisa Odabashian of Consumers Union, a supporter of the bill. 

Two kinds of fat contribute to high cholesterol — saturated fats and trans fat. Saturated fats are already included on food labels, but it takes a savvy consumer and a calculator to figure out the level of trans fats, she said. 

Trans fat is worse than saturated fat, Odabashian said, because while saturated fat increases cholesterol, trans fat increases bad cholesterol and at the same time it decreases good cholesterol. 

Many lowfat food products boast that they’re low in saturated fat, but they often have high levels of trans fat, she said 

“Californians shouldn’t hesitate to call the manufacturers of the products and ask them why they’re not disclosing this information voluntarily,” Bowen said. 

The bill was supported by the American Heart Association, the California Dietetic Association, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. 

It was opposed by the National Association of Margarine Manufacturers, the Chamber of Commerce, the California Grocers Association and the California League of Food Processors. 

Oakland man charged with mailing ‘anthrax’ letter

Saturday June 01, 2002

OAKLAND – An Oakland man appeared in federal court Friday on charges he mailed an envelope containing white powder and a threatening letter to U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft during last year’s anthrax scare. 

Dean Wilber, 33, was arrested Thursday at his home. He is charged with threatening to use a weapon of mass destruction — anthrax — after allegedly mailing the letter from Wyoming while on a cross-country bus trip. 

The letter prosecutors allege Wilber sent caused an anthrax scare at a Cheyenne, Wyo. post office, where it burst during processing. Workers at the facility were treated with antibiotics in case the substance contained real anthrax, as several letters to government officials did. 

The powder turned out to be talcum, but federal authorities and U.S. Postal Service officials saw no joke in the hoax. 

“It was traumatic. There was a natural fear that this was the real thing,” said Carol Rookstool, Cheyenne’s postmaster. “We waited a full 36 hours until the tests were absolutely accurate.” 

Prosecutors say Wilber was traveling from Maryland to the San Francisco Bay area on Dec. 17 when he mailed the letter from Laramie, Wyo. Wilber was easy to track down because he signed his name, Rookstool said. 

Wilber was being held without bail at county jail in Dublin. He was expected to be transferred to Wyoming early next week for an arraignment, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Cheyenne.

Teens sentenced for attack on Mexican workers

By Ben Fox, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

The assaults were racially  

motivated, prosecutors say 


SAN DIEGO — A group of teenagers who attacked five Mexican farm workers were sentenced Friday to terms ranging from four months in a youth detention camp to time in adult prisons in a case that caused widespread outrage and became a test for a state juvenile justice initiative. 

Judge James Milliken rejected defense lawyers’ requests to sentence the teens as juveniles, citing the severity of the July 5, 2000, attack on the men in a San Diego canyon. 

“The fact that this behavior is possible is a sad commentary on the community,” Milliken said. “I, for one, feel we have to tell the community that we are not going to put up with it.” 

Four teens sentenced Friday were part of a group of eight who, according to prosecutors, hunted down and severely beat the farm workers in a racially motivated attack. They used clubs, steel rods and BB guns to assault and rob the men at their encampment near the nursery where they worked. 

The four pleaded no contest to charges that included assault with a deadly weapon with a special hate-crime allegation, robbery and elder abuse. The victims were in their 60s at the time. 

Three other teens who pleaded no contest to similar charges and one who pleaded guilty are scheduled to be sentenced July 23. 

The most lenient sentence handed down Friday, 120 days in a youth camp, went to Morgan Victor Manduley, 17, who the prosecutor called the “least culpable” in the attack. 

Manduley was the lead plaintiff in a challenge to Proposition 21, the 2000 state law that allows prosecutors to try juveniles as adults for violent offenses without a judge’s approval. 

In April, the state Supreme Court upheld the voter-approved initiative. Milliken said that even though he didn’t support the measure, he was obligated to abide by it during sentencing. 

Jason Wayne Beever, 16, was ordered to serve 180 days in a youth camp. Both Beever and Manduley were given five years of probation and ordered to attend a class on racial sensitivity and perform 200 hours of community service. 

Two other defendants who prosecutors said played more serious roles in the attack — Adam Mitchell Ketsdever, 18, and Bradly Hunter Davidofsky, 17 — were ordered to serve 90 days in an adult state prison. After that time, their cases will be reevaluated and Milliken could sentence them to as much as 15 years in prison. He could also send them to county jail or release them. 

Michael Anthony Rose, 17, was scheduled to be sentenced Friday, but his case was postponed until July 23 to enable lawyers to determine whether he is eligible to be sent to the California Youth Authority because he was younger than 16 at the time of the crime. 

During much of the proceeding, Manduley and Beever could be seen crying as they say in the jury box, accompanied by their lawyers. The three other defendants showed little emotion, other than to bow their heads occasionally. 

Two of the victims, Anastacio Irigoyen, 71, and Alfredo Sanchez, 64, were in court and listened to the proceeding through an interpreter. Facing the two men, Manduley said: “I would really like to apologize to all the men involved in this incident.” 

Ketsdever, whose actions prosecutor Hector Jimenez had called “sadistic,” also apologized, saying, “I am truly sorry for what I’ve done and I hope that some day I might make it up to you and your families.” 

Jimenez called Davidofsky the “most responsible” for the attack. “I think Mr. Davidofsky deserves to go to prison,” he said. 

The attack sparked strong reaction across San Diego. Latino organizations called for harsh punishment of the teenagers, who come from the relatively affluent neighborhood of Rancho Penasquitos. Manduley’s father is a Navy commander who is a Cuban immigrant. 

In reaction to the sentences, Luis Natividad of the Latino/Latina Unity Coalition of San Diego said: “We’re satisfied that they didn’t get off. ... They should do some time.” 

A civil lawsuit filed against the boys’ families ended in January with agreements to have about $1.4 million divided among the victims, who were legally employed at the nursery. 

Irigoyen, who now lives in La Paz, Mexico, said he feels lingering effects from the attack. “They left me there for dead,” he said. “They should be punished as adults.” 

In speaking to the court, Sanchez said he still has five BB pellets embedded in his body, including one below his right eye and two in his ear. “I want justice according to the law,” he said. 

When police found Sanchez after the beating, he was in a fetal position in his hut and unable to come out. “The defendants admitted they shot the hell of him,” Jimenez said. 

“It is completely upsetting that these young men could be so callous, that they could treat these men like animals,” he added. 

Senator says Enron had secret Web site for energy trades Senator says Enron had secret Web site for energy trades Senator says Enron had secret Web site for energy trades

Saturday June 01, 2002


SACRAMENTO – A state senator investigating the state’s energy crisis said Friday that Enron Corp. used secret Internet sites to communicate about California energy trades. 

Sen. Joe Dunn, D-Santa Ana, said investigators uncovered the Web sites in electronic data Enron gave to the Senate Select Committee to Investigate Price Manipulation of the Wholesale Energy Market. 

The committee will hear testimony from its information technology consultant on Wednesday, Dunn said, about the sites and about alleged destruction of other electronic data that investigators have discovered. 

“We believe the data shows that Enron deliberately destroyed e-data,” Dunn said Friday. 

The committee subpoenaed the e-mails of some top Enron officials, which Dunn said were destroyed. 

Other data on the electronic submissions from Enron show the existence of “secret third-party Web sites” that traders may have used to shield transactions “outside the scope of any subpoena,” Dunn said. 

At the hearing next week, Dunn said he will also show evidence that “links certain municipal utility systems that were Enron’s partners in those transactions.” 

Some of the municipal utilities have “profit-sharing agreements” with Enron, he said. 

Enron officials didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment. 


Group sues LA schools for rabbit suffocation

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

LOS ANGELES — A seventh-grade teacher who suffocated a rabbit triggered a Superior Court lawsuit by a group seeking to force the Los Angeles Unified School District to change its policy on animal experimentation. 

The Animal Legal Defense Fund said it filed suit Thursday after failing to persuade the district to change its policy voluntarily. 

“Our concern isn’t to go back and punish anyone,” said attorney Mitchell Wagner. “The ALDF is not one of these radical interest groups. It wants the school district’s policies to comply with the law.” 

Godwin Collins Onunwah was a seventh-grade teacher at Gage Middle School in Huntington Park when he placed the rabbit in a plastic bag and tied the bag shut in front of his students in September 2000. 

When the animal didn’t die of asphyxiation, authorities said, Onunwah placed the bag in a cabinet and left it there over the weekend. When he returned to school on Monday the rabbit was dead. 

Jurors acquitted him of animal cruelty charges last year, ruling he didn’t act maliciously. The school district did not renew his teaching contract, however. 

School officials declined to comment on the lawsuit Friday, saying they had not seen the complaint. 

State law allows students to decline to participate in activities where an animal might be harmed. 

Wagner said the district sends parents a blanket disclaimer at the start of each school year, but he said the law also requires individual teachers to give notice to parents at the time of the specific activity. 

SAN FRANCISCO – A federal appeals court on Friday ordered a trial to determine if the California Highway Patrol discriminates against minorities when it comes to promoting officers. In doing so, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a federal j

Saturday June 01, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO – A federal appeals court on Friday ordered a trial to determine if the California Highway Patrol discriminates against minorities when it comes to promoting officers. 

In doing so, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a federal judge who, during pretrial stages of the case, found that there was discrimination and too few minorities at high-level positions. 

The appeals court said data the aggrieved CHP officers submitted did not properly indicate there was discrimination, and ordered the case to proceed to a trial with new data. A CHP spokesman said the department was mulling its legal options. 

The case, which has bounced through the court system and never gone to trial, was filed in 1993 by a black officer who claimed he was passed over for a promotion because of his race. 

No trial date has been set. 

The highway patrol is also the subject of allegations it discriminates against minority motorists on highways. 

Davis unveils speedier Bay Area rail system

By Karen Gaudette, The Associated Prss
Saturday June 01, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — The glossy passenger train that slid into this city’s Caltrain depot to the fanfare of a brass band Friday can’t hustle as quickly as the bullet trains of Japan and Europe. 

But its backers say the “baby bullet” trains will nearly halve the 90-minute commute between San Francisco and Silicon Valley, and could persuade up to 30,000 drivers to ride the rails rather than sit on congested highways. 

Politicians including Gov. Gray Davis and state Sen. Jackie Speier joined transportation planners to herald the new locomotives and cars, which won’t open to the public until late 2003. Upgrades to accommodate the new trains are the largest rail improvement project in Caltrain’s 139-year history. 

“We’re trying to get you to work faster and get you home quicker,” Davis said. 

Speier, a San Mateo Democrat who championed the project in the Legislature, said new transportation options are crucial as California’s population grows. 

Caltrain has drawn as many as 10 million passengers annually. The 77-mile system runs through Santa Clara, San Francisco and San Mateo counties. 

The express trains will cost $55 million; it will cost an additional $110 million for new and upgraded track, new signals, a new station and other improvements, according to Caltrain estimates. 

The state’s Traffic Congestion Relief Program chipped in $127 million, said Jayme Maltbie, a spokeswoman for the rail system. Additional funding came from federal grants, passenger fares and money from government agencies along the route. 

The express trains will be able to dodge some stations along the way and pass slower trains on new tracks. Though they can reach 95 mph, the speed limit along the corridor is 79 mph, and the new trains typically will go around 70 mph. Current trains must stop too frequently to go 70 mph for an extended stretch. 

That speed pleased Alex Cano, a Caltrain instructor engineer who helped guide the train Friday on its voyage from San Jose. 

“It’s the difference between night and day,” he told reporters from his perch in the train’s nose.

Former KGB agent surfaces in new role as an FBI informant

By Ben Fox, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

SAN DIEGO – She was once a KGB operative, a Russian emigre who seduced an FBI agent into passing a secret document to the Soviet Union. 

Now the woman who pleaded guilty to espionage against the United States in 1985 has gone over to the other side. 

Court documents released this month show that Svetlana Ogorodnikova worked as an FBI informant — wearing a wire to tape conversations with a woman accused of having a San Diego private investigator kidnapped, tortured and murdered in Mexico. 

Ogorodnikova, who served 11 years in prison on espionage charges, is expected to testify for the prosecution in a trial scheduled to start June 18. 

“It is truly ironic,” said Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Pasadena, a former assistant U.S. attorney who prosecuted the FBI agent, Richard Miller, in one of three trials. 

Miller, who was arrested in 1984, was the first FBI agent charged with espionage. The case attracted widespread attention and embarrassed the government. 

The congressman wasn’t surprised to find Ogorodnikova working for the FBI. 

“She wasn’t ideological,” Schiff said. “She always struck me as a disconnected person who really has no purpose other than her own survival.” 

Ogorodnikova’s lawyer says her client hasn’t been promised anything for her testimony. In fact, she spent four months in jail in the past two years because her meetings with the FBI violated her parole when they were not reported to her parole officer, said attorney Stanley Greenberg. 

The San Diego case has nothing to do with espionage. 

Kimberly Bailey of Fallbrook is accused of having Richard Post kidnapped, tortured over five days in Tijuana, and then murdered because she believed he cheated on her with other women and stole money from her business. 

Bailey has pleaded innocent to conspiracy to murder a person in a foreign country and other charges. Through her lawyer, she has insisted that Post is alive and in hiding. 

Ogorodnikova, who was released from prison in 1995, is a key witness in the case. Federal prosecutors in San Diego said the Russian was friends with Bailey and covertly taped conversations in which the defendant allegedly admitted having Post killed. 

Bailey’s lawyer, Richard DeMassa, claims the FBI asked Ogorodnikova to befriend his client. Federal prosecutor Barbara Major declined to discuss the meeting of the two women in detail. 

Ogorodnikova emigrated to the United States in the 1970s and settled in the Los Angeles area. 

She has spent years fighting a deportation order, but the final resolution was unclear. Federal prosecutors and her lawyer said they did not know her legal status. Karen Kraushaar, a spokeswoman for the Immigration and Naturalization Service, declined to comment. 

Ogorodnikova admitted having an affair with Miller to obtain classified documents for KGB agents based at the Soviet consulate in San Francisco. Miller, an overweight agent with a history of disciplinary problems, claimed he was doing a reverse sting operation. 

The first trial of the FBI agent ended in a mistrial when the jury deadlocked. He was convicted of espionage at a second trial, but the verdict was overturned on appeal. In 1994, he was convicted again. He was released from prison after serving two-thirds of a 13-year sentence. 

Despite her earlier confession, Ogorodnikova, in the second and third trials, claimed Miller was innocent and had only recruited her to help catch Soviet spies in the United States. 

While the details are unclear, Ogorodnikova met Bailey in the summer of 1999, according to the court documents. At the time, the FBI was investigating the disappearance of Post, whose body has never been found.

Courts reinstate Suzuki suit against Consumer Reports

Saturday June 01, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — A federal appeals court recently reinstated a defamation suit by Suzuki Motor Corp. against the publisher of Consumer Reports. 

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, ruling 2-1, said a jury should determine whether New York-based publisher Consumers Union of United States Inc. rigged its testing for a published report labeling the Suzuki Samurai “not acceptable.” The magazine first reported in 1988 that the Suzuki “rolls over too easily.” 

Two years ago, a Santa Ana federal judge dismissed the case, ruling that Suzuki had not sufficiently supported its claim that the magazine acted maliciously to damage the reputation of the sport utility vehicle. 

But the appeals court ruled that a jury should weigh for itself allegations the magazine rigged the driving test to reach a predetermined conclusion, and that it published its results with reckless disregard as to whether they were true, wrote Judge A. Wallace Tashima. 

Tashima also said a federal jury should consider whether the magazine’s motives were profit driven, given that it reprinted its original 1988 story in fund-raising solicitations while it was in “substantial debt.” 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Agency declined a petition to declare the vehicle defective and said the magazine’s test procedures for the Suzuki “do not have a scientific basis,” Tashima wrote. 

In dissent, Judge Warren J. Ferguson said there was not sufficient evidence for the case to proceed. Blocking a trial, Ferguson wrote, was “necessary to both avoid the inhibition of free speech by the media and to protect public safety and health.” 

The magazine is considering asking the court to reconsider, or may request the U.S. Supreme Court review the ruling. 

“The First Amendment guarantees the right to report our independent findings, even when our judgment differs from that of the government or the company in question,” said Jim Guest, president of Consumers Union. 

Suzuki attorney George Ball said the court’s decision means the magazine “will now have to answer in court for the false charges it has spread and continues to spread regarding the Suzuki Samurai sport utility vehicle.” 

Suzuki’s United States headquarters is in Brea. It no longer markets the Samurai vehicles in the United States. 

The case is Suzuki v. Consumers Union, 00-56043. 

Veterans affairs CEO suspended from duty

Saturday June 01, 2002

Under investgation for misconduct 

The Associated Press 


LOS ANGELES – The chief executive officer of the area’s veterans affairs health care system has been suspended from duty while federal officials investigate possible misconduct on his part. 

Investigators would not elaborate on the case against 51-year-old Philip Thomas, who was reassigned to a VA office in Long Beach. No criminal charges have been filed, said Barbara Fallen, a West Coast VA spokeswoman. 

Sources told the Los Angeles Times that the investigation is centered on a worker’s-disability claim made by Thomas. They said the suspension was ordered in late April. 

Thomas was named head of Los Angeles veteran health care services three years ago. He was charged with finding a resolution over development of a 388-acre site west of the San Diego Freeway. 

His suspension comes two days after Gov. Gray Davis announced plans to build a state nursing home for veterans at the site. 

The project, supported by state Assembly Speaker Herb Wesson, D-Culver City, drew criticism as veterans in Ventura County and Lancaster said that a new home could cause such facilities planned for their areas to be scaled back. 

Mississippi State teaching the science of Hollywood

By Jason Straziuso, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

STARKVILLE, Miss. — Across the country, a barely detectable Southern flavor spices local TV weather forecasts, up to a third of which are delivered by former students of Mississippi State University. 

Meteorologists are one part TV star, one part scientist, and Mississippi State takes pride in producing forecasters who can do both parts equally well. 

“That is our claim to fame — producing people who do TV weather and who are hopefully a little more prepared than Willard Scott,” says director Mark Binkley, the program’s director who says NBC’s semiretired weatherman is more a personality than a meteorologist. 

The American Meteorology Society, which gives out a seal of approval that’s often advertised on local news programs, says about 25 percent of forecasters it approves are MSU-educated. Keith Westerlage, director of on-camera meteorology at The Weather Channel, said up to a third of the nation’s forecasters have ties to Mississippi State — when you add in the people who study through its distance-learning program. 

Behind the university’s formula are two professors — one for the science, one for everything else. 

Wayne Verno is the everything-else guy: image consultant, voice coach, psychologist ... 

He may urge students to have more inflection in their voice, less movement in their eyebrows. And if asked, he might quietly advise weight loss to improve job chances. 

Beyond that, Verno says: “I have to let students develop their style. It’s not my place to say, ‘You’re going to be the serious weathercaster and you’re going to be the more comical weathercaster.”’ 

Verno’s partner, Mike Brown, handles the science. 

The two pride themselves on producing students who are technically sound. 

TV weather has evolved over the years, from a straight-laced presentation in the 1950s and 1960s, to a personality-driven approach in the 1970s. Since the 1980s, stations have pushed for forecasters with a solid meteorological background. 

The American Meteorology Society sets the national standards for broadcast meteorology. It judges both education and communication skills. 

“We’re really not supposed to be experts in on-air talent,” says the AMS’ Kelly Garvey. “We pretty much like to judge the scientific ability of the person, but because it’s so important for the broadcaster to relay the message to the public, we have the tape grading.” 

Garvey said the AMS awards about 80 seals each year. Mississippi State’s 25 percent take is not matched by any other school, she said. 

The university’s influence is so wide because of its video and Internet distance-learning program, which takes three years of study at 15 hours a week. About 1,400 students have graduated since 1987. 

It has helped some of the highest-profile forecasters in the country. About a quarter of The Weather Channel’s 30 on-air forecasters have a Mississippi State pedigree. The program is popular because it gives midcareer people a way to advance while continuing to work, Westerlage said. 

Bob Stokes, seen on The Weather Channel Saturday through Tuesday mornings, said the program was “wonderful.” 

“You had to study for this stuff. It’s not something you just walk in without cracking a book,” Stokes said. “Some of the more successful and outstanding broadcast meteorologists have gotten their education at MSU.” 

Many weather schools teach more hard-core science than Mississippi State and are more likely to fill private and government jobs, as with the National Weather Service. 

Fred Carr, director of the University of Oklahoma’s school of meteorology, says many schools offer a weather broadcasting emphasis, but not the intensive course Binkley and Mississippi State have. 

“Mark, I’ll have to give him credit, he’s put Mississippi State on the map with that program,” Carr said. 

Binkley says research shows TV audiences pick a news channel based on their weather coverage. 

“When it’s a high of 92 and a 30 percent chance of showers, they’re all going to say the same thing,” he said. “The days that there is severe weather is when you find out who your best person is. And the only way to be good in severe weather is to know your meteorology.”

Cowgirl Museum opening in Fort Worth

By Angela K. Brown, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

National museum honors women who helped tame the Wild West 


FORT WORTH, Texas – They broke in broncos on their ranches and dangled from galloping horses in Wild West shows and Hollywood flicks. 

Often overlooked in history books, women who helped tame the West — and others sharing their pioneering spirit — are riding high in the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame. 

Their tales of grit and grace are being told in the new $21 million, 33,000-square-foot building, set to open next weekend in Fort Worth’s cultural district. 

“These women are great role models — often ordinary women who did extraordinary things because they had to get done,” said Patricia W. Riley, the museum’s executive director. “These are inspirational lessons whether you’re 6 years old or 60.” 

Corralling cattle isn’t necessarily a requirement to be a cowgirl. The 158 Hall of Fame inductees include former slave and businesswoman Clara Brown, author Laura Ingalls Wilder, painter Georgia O’Keeffe and potter Maria Martinez. 

Among this year’s five inductees is Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who plans to attend the museum’s Friday ribbon cutting. The El Paso native, whose 1981 appointment made her the first female Supreme Court justice, grew up on her family’s ranch straddling the Arizona and New Mexico border. 

Pam Minick, a champion team roper and a 2000 Cowgirl Hall of Fame inductee, said museum visitors may be surprised by some of the 400 women featured — from Lewis and Clark’s American Indian guide Sacajawea to bootmaking businesswoman Enid Justin. 

“The common thread, whether they’re a cowgirl at heart or a competitor, is perseverance and looking at obstacles as a stepping stone,” said Minick, also the first woman rodeo announcer in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. “It’s hard to put into words how proud I am to be part of it.” 

The museum, billed as the world’s only museum dedicated to documenting women’s contributions to the American West, came from the humblest of beginnings in 1975 in Hereford, near Amarillo. 

When the town planned to host an all-women rodeo, resident Margaret Formby thought there should be a museum honoring cowgirls. She stored a growing collection of photos and memorabilia — sent from rodeo stars and families of Western pioneer women — in the Deaf Smith County Library basement. 

The museum opened in a donated house six years later, but by the early 1990s Formby and others decided it needed more space in a larger city. Nearly three dozen cities lobbied to be the museum’s new home. 

Ultimately, the choice was Fort Worth, dubbed “Cowtown” decades ago because it was a frequent stop for cattlemen traveling along the Chisholm Trail. 

However, the museum has not had a permanent home since moving to Fort Worth in 1994, so the collection has been in storage while organizers raised $21 million from donors and planned the project. The new museum is set to open to the public June 9, two days after the ribbon-cutting ceremony and a day after a parade featuring many Hall of Fame inductees. 

The brick building near a horseshoe-shaped plaza features a mural of women on horseback. Inside, several motifs — wild roses, horse heads and ropes — adorn the light fixtures, columns and stair railings. 

The museum includes a multipurpose theater with 54 leather-tooled seats, three exhibit galleries with interactive and educational exhibits to showcase about 2000 artifacts, a research library, gift shop and a room for traveling exhibits. 

Names of the Hall of Fame inductees are on illuminated stars along the first-floor walls of the rotunda, where glass-tiled murals along the second-floor level depict faces and scenes that slowly shift. 

The pop culture gallery features pictures of actress Barbara Stanwyck, singer Patsy Montana and Dale Evans — as well as her stunt double, Alice Van Springsteen. Other displays feature stereotypical cowgirl advertisements, books, posters and album covers. 

In the ranch gallery, visitors can see a day in the life of a cowgirl. It features pictures taken by ranchers nationwide who were sent disposable cameras by the museum. Artifacts include a split skirt and a side saddle. 

The arena gallery tells stories of rodeo stars through the years, from trick rider Tad Lucas and sharpshooter Annie Oakley to cutting horse champion Sheila Welch. Visitors can see costumes, saddles and rodeo programs. 

“We wanted to make sure people have access to their stories and be inspired by them,” Riley said.

Young NY writer ‘ended up’ with a best-selling novel

By Pauline M. Millard, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

NEW YORK — The walls of Jonathan Safran Foer’s apartment are covered with everything from a framed piece of blank paper from Susan Sontag to random sketches made by his friends. There is even an enormous canvas of a huge hand that the author himself painted. 

“Pretty much everything up there is an accident — things I’ve picked up along long the way,” he says. 

So goes the story of Foer’s life: Things just sort of ... happen. 

A native of Washington, D.C., he found himself at Princeton University, where he majored in philosophy, and took some writing classes “for fun.” He wound up winning the freshman, sophomore, junior and senior Creative Writing awards. 

One summer, Foer hopped on a plane and headed out to the Ukraine for four days, in search of the woman who hid his grandmother from the Nazis during World War II. 

He did little research before his trip and never found the woman. So, he made up a lot of things and wrote a novel, “Everything Is Illuminated.” The book just happened to make the 25-year-old Foer the hottest young writer in publishing. 

Houghton Mifflin paid nearly $500,000 to acquire the manuscript and HarperCollins purchased the paperback for $925,000. Actor Leiv Schreiber is hoping to direct a film version of “Everything Is Illuminated,” which quickly made The New York Times’ best seller list in May. 

However, Foer (pronounced FOH-er) finds the attention somewhat disconcerting. 

“It becomes very frustrating when other people think that you are successful or happy,” he says. “It’s almost as if they don’t take me seriously. Because, if you really took me seriously you would know that the things that are important to me are a lot bigger than money or getting good reviews.” 

“Everything Is Illuminated” is a three-pronged novel. 

It begins with correspondence between Alex, a Ukrainian, and the main character, coincidentally named Jonathan Safran Foer. Alex is to be Foer’s guide as they search for his grandmother’s old shtetl. 

Then there’s the story of Alex and Jonathan as they travel through the Ukraine with Alex’s nearly blind grandfather and Alex’s dog, Sammy Davis Junior Junior. 

Foer then weaves in a historical narrative of life in the shtetl from 1791 until 1942. 

He is a slight man with a mop of dark, curly hair and soft black eyes. He speaks quietly but eloquently, choosing his words carefully as if savoring delicate morsels of food. 

“I can be very hard on myself,” he says. “I convince myself that I’m fooling people. Or, I convince myself that people like the book for the wrong reasons.” 

Others are eager to praise him. Houghton Mifflin editor Eric Chinski says that the book had an “amazing blend of energy and wisdom.” 

“It was that rare combination of being stylistically risky but the acrobatics served a purpose,” Chinski says.

Five arrested on identity theft charges

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

CLE ELUM, Wash. – Five Yakima residents have been arrested for investigation of identity theft after a customer tried to open a bank account here using false identification. 

A clerk at Sterling Savings Bank, trying to turn on the branch’s security camera, triggered the security alarm instead, bringing police to the bank Tuesday. 

“It’s a good thing she accidentally triggered the burglary alarm because otherwise we probably would not have caught them,” Police Chief Brennen Milloy said. 

A search of a vehicle and a hotel room in Ellensburg turned up credit cards and checkbooks in a variety of names, computer equipment to make checks and three ounces of methamphetamine. 

Robert Pauley, Richard McPherson, Nicole Stoops, Janie Cable and Lisa Teders were arrested for investigation of identity theft, second-degree theft of credit cards, possession of stolen property and possession of methamphetamine. Stoops also was booked for investigation of forgery.

NY Museum of Modern Art reopens — in Queens

By Verenca Dobnik, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

NEW YORK — The masterpieces of the Museum of Modern Art are now in Queens. 

“The space here has a certain ‘rawness’ that makes the art come off the walls in a potent way,” museum director Glenn Lowry said Wednesday, as he inaugurated MoMA’s temporary move to a former Swingline staple factory. 

Pablo Picasso could not have imagined when he painted his groundbreaking “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” in 1907 that this icon of cubism would end up across the street from a Queens envelope warehouse and down the street from a Dominican diner. 

The museum, which first opened its doors 72 years ago, was forced to move from its midtown Manhattan address on West 53rd Street for a $650 million expansion project. The site will be closed through 2005. 

MoMAQNS — the name of the bright blue converted staple factory — officially opens to the public on Saturday. 

In this industrial Queens neighborhood, the museum’s stark white walls and 21-foot black ceiling frame cavernous, odd-shaped galleries, with a white metal ramp leading to the gift shop. 

It seems the perfect space for a green 1950s Jeep — part of an exhibit called “AUTObodies” that also includes a 1990 Formula 1 Ferrari. 

“Tempo,” featuring contemporary art from around the world, examines time in everything from clocks to watches and metronomes. A DVD creation shows a couple locked in a long, slow kiss that seems to defy time. 

But MoMA’s reputation rests on the truly timeless treasures of modern art, many of them now gracing a series of new galleries with a cracked concrete floor and the sign “To Be Looked At.” 

Museum officials want to make sure their famous works really do get seen — even at a location that would not normally draw Manhattanites or tourists. 

Last Sunday, one attention-grabber was a procession of reproductions of famous MoMA works from Manhattan across the Queensborough Bridge to MoMAQNS on 33rd Street in Queens. The art was enhanced with Peruvian music and brightly colored costumes. 

The real works are now in place — part of MoMAs collection of more than 100,000 paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, architectural models and drawings. MoMA also owns about 14,000 films, and 140,000 books and periodicals. 

In Queens, Picasso’s “Demoiselles” hangs near Vincent van Gogh’s 1889 “Starry Night” and “Dance” — Matisse’s mammoth 1909 painting of five female nudes. 

MoMAQNS remains as audacious — and provocative — as its Manhattan parent. 

In a gallery close to the masterpieces, a man’s leg protrudes through a wall, in shoes and a pant leg. It seems all too real. This, too, is MoMA’s art, an untitled 1991 work by American Robert Gober, who made it with cotton, wood and steel — and real human hair on the wax “skin” just under the cuff. 

“There are relationships that normally occur in museums, where collections are organized well,” said Lowry, the director. “Here, it’s a little looser — and it works. In here, some of that shocking power of art gets refreshed.”

BPD executes major drug crackdown

By Chris Nichols, Daily Planet Staff
Friday May 31, 2002

Special Enforcement Unit makes 20 arrest of alleged drug dealers in west and south Berkeley in one night; Chief says more are soon to follow 


Residents of west Berkeley gathered Thursday night to hear details about the arrest of 20 suspected drug dealers individuals for trafficking narcotics and to discuss ways to continue to clean up their neighborhood.  

The meeting was attended by longtime neighborhood residents, city officials and members of the Berkeley Police Department. It came as a result of concern within the community over drug activity and related violence and theft. Though residents were hopeful that the recent arrests would mitigate drug activity in the neighborhood, many felt more work needs to be done. 

“I think the ball has started rolling. We’re only going to work harder,” said Erik Upson, Beat Officer for the BPD in west Berkeley. According to Upson, the department has been focusing first and foremost on drug dealing in the west Berkeley neighborhood bordered by San Pablo Avenue to the east, Dwight Way to the south and Bancroft Avenue to the north. 

“Most of the problems come from drug dealing activity - vandalism, violence, traffic, the general perception of disharmony,” said Upson. 

The 20 arrests come after a three-month surveillance operation conducted by the department’s Special Enforcement Unit, a unit formed to reduce illicit behavior. The department secured 42 indictments from the Alameda County Grand jury resulting in arrest warrants for individuals involved in the sale of narcotics. According to Police Chief Dash Butler, efforts are under way to find the remaining individuals with outstanding warrants. 

A Police Review Commission Community Forum was held Wednesday night at the same sight, Rosa Parks Elementary School, with most residents defending the BPD. Community members at Wednesday’s meeting claimed that drug violence plagued West Berkeley not police brutality.  

Many of the same concerns carried over to Thursday’s meeting as residents asked officials what could be done on a community wide basis to lessen drug activity and violence. Officials emphasized that the police can not control the situation alone and urged residents to be watchful and to work with the police.  

City Manager Weldon Rucker addressed the need for all city officials to participate in neighborhood issues. “We need a partnership between the city and the community. If we are creative and innovative we can come up with solutions with you. The entire city government has to step forward,” said Rucker. 

The issue of holding property owners responsible for the tenants they house was also discussed.  

“We need to work cooperatively with property owners, to set community standards and live a quality life,” said Rucker. “We have to ask ourselves how do we reach the demands when the community is raising the bar. We have to reenergize and reinvigorate ourselves.” 

Councilmember Margaret Breland, who lives near 10th and Allston, an intersection highlighted at the meeting for high drug activity, helped organize Wednesday’s forum. 

Breland noted that activity had decreased recently but that things have a way of repeating themselves.  

“Don’t relax. Hopefully everything will stay quiet but these people are smart, they’re street smart. Let’s keep our eyes open,” advised Breland. 

According to Artensia Barry, a resident of west Berkeley for the past 8 years, community members need to communicate and work together to solve these problems. 

“There’s no communication between community members. You can live on the same block for 20 years here and you don’t know your neighbor’s name,” said Barry. 

Barry suggested that residents need to take steps to inform each other of problem. Residents also discussed the need for bilingual officers from the BPD to communicate with and involve the Hispanic population in the neighborhood in community action. 

“We can’t do it alone. Our task is to mitigate some of the violence. It has to be a balanced approach with the treatment and prevention programs coupled with the hard-core crackdown,” said Butler.  




Butler made People’s Park ‘safe for volleyball’

Carol Denney
Friday May 31, 2002

To the Editor: 


While I know the whole community probably most enjoyed his tireless efforts to stamp out public nudity, my favorite part of retiring chief of police Butler's era is his 1991 campaign to make People's park safe for volleyball. The bullets, the mass arrests, the dogged efforts to frame local activists may have cost Berkeley taxpayers millions of dollars, but we have priceless memories instead to share with our children. 

I personally want to thank Butler and ex-City Manager Michael Brown for the accusation of assault they made against me after tackling me and dragging me out of a City Council meeting, while I quietly waited for my opportunity to speak. Channel 5 news footage exonerated me, it's true, but I'm sure I'm not the only Berkeley taxpayer who found the trial thrilling enough that it was worth every penny. 


Carol Denney 


Jazz diva gets ‘Weill’d’

By Marc Breindel, Special to the Daily Planet
Friday May 31, 2002

Dee Dee Bridgewater’s world tour comes to Yoshi’s 


Dee Dee Bridgewater didn’t have to go all the way to Poland to discover German theater composer Kurt Weill.  

After all, she’d already covered his signature song – “Mack the Knife” – on her Ella Fitzgerald tribute album, and she’d already played the first African-American Sally Bowles in “Cabaret,” a play reminiscent of Weill’s work.  

But if she hadn’t gone to Poland, the jazz singer and Broadway actress wouldn’t be dazzling Yoshi’s audiences this week with a full program of “theatrical jazz” for the club’s 30th anniversary celebration, and the Bay Area wouldn’t be “Gettin’ Weill’d.” 

Bridgewater discovered the breadth of Weill’s work when she performed at the modernist songwriter’s 100th birthday commemoration in Wroclaw, Poland in March, 2000. She’d conquered the worlds of jazz (for which she’s won two Grammy awards) and theater (a Tony for “The Wiz”), but was still unprepared for the way that Weill tribute would energize her, creatively. 

“Every song was treated completely differently,” Bridgewater said during a break from her world tour, speaking from Toulouse, France. “The orchestrations went from a hard rock to an opera with strings, to a kind of cabaret to a punk rock number…And what amazed me was that even though these women were singing in German or in Polish, and even though I didn’t understand what they were saying, I was just mesmerized.” 

Bridgewater soon immersed herself in Weill’s repertoire, and now she’s hooked. “I’ve just fallen in love. I love this man’s music,” she says. 

Bridgewater and Weill came together in an oddly elliptical way. Weill began his career in Germany in the 1920s, fled the Nazis to Paris and then New York in the 1930s, and found success on Broadway in the 1940s. (Weill died in 1950.) Bridgewater retraced Weill’s steps in reverse: She starred on Broadway in the 1970s, toured France with the musicals “Sophisticated Ladies” and “Lady Day” in the 1980s, settled down near Paris, and this spring introduced German audiences to the late Broadway works of Weill, completing the circle. 

European theatergoers could not be happier. Although Weill and his German writing partner Bertolt Brecht are quite familiar to Europeans, many of the Broadway songs – written with American lyricists like Ira Gershwin and Alan Jay Lerner – are new to them. Bridgewater and her all-star European jazz ensemble packed opera houses from London to Istanbul. Bridgewater offered a select Continental run-down of audience reactions: 

Bridgewater is eager to see how American audiences will respond. Many of her European fans couldn’t understand the English lyrics, so Americans might take even more from the show. “I’m quite excited,” Bridgewater said. 

Bridgewater is also glad to be returning to the theater, in a sense; she performs each song in the show as “a little vignette,” having worked with arrangers to give each one a different “musical personality.”  

This is not entirely new territory for the singer, who’s spent much of her career fusing jazz and theater. She played the lead in the reworked opera “Carmen Jazz,” and was nominated for England’s coveted Laurence Olivier Award for her portrayal of Billie Holiday in “Lady Day.” 

What is new is that Bridgewater is now creating theatrical music, rather than the more familiar musical theater. Critics and fans alike have reveled in the jazz singer’s lively performances, but some have questioned where the musician ends and the actress begins. Bridgewater hopes “Getting’ Weill’d” makes things clear. 

“I feel like I finally have found a music that expresses all of me,” Bridgewater said. “So I can pull up the theatricality, and it’s not too much; it makes sense in this context.” 

Weill also gives Bridgewater a range of emotion – not to mention vocal dimension – that she’s found lacking in some of her other material: “I’d about had it with these light, kind of trite, cute songs; the pop songs of the ‘30s and ‘40s. I wanted more substance. This music, for me, is perfect. Because it’s very challenging musically, vocally, harmonically.” 

The lyrics are also more complex than Bridgewater’s usual standards. 

“The stories are richer. The melodies are richer. It’s just more intelligent,” Bridgewater said. 

Yoshi’s audiences will hear selections from Bridgewater’s latest album, ‘This is New.”  

Most of the songs are culled from Weill’s Broadway period, such as “Speak Low” and “I’m a Stranger Here Myself,” from the play “Touch of Venus.” Unfortunately, Bridgewater won’t be signing many copies of “This is New,” because it won’t be released domestically until August 6. (The European version can be purchased online now.) She’ll be back in the States this fall for a full national tour. 

Bridgewater committed to play as part of Yoshi’s 30th anniversary celebration before her album’s final release date changed. She kept her date as a “sneak preview” series because she considers Yoshi’s to be “family.” 

Bridgewater also loves the acoustics of the club where she recorded her Grammy-nominated live album, “Live at Yoshi’s.” 

“That little jazz club is the best club in the U.S. o f A. Bar none,”Bridgewater said. 

Coming from a woman who’s filled in for Ella Fitzgerald at the Montreaux Jazz Festival and wowed audiences from Carnegie Hall to Paris’s Olympia Theatre, that’s strong praise, indeed.  


Panthers looking to make noise at state championship meet

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Friday May 31, 2002

Seniors looking for final highlights to cap stellar careers 


The St. Mary’s High girls’ track team won its first North Coast Section title last weekend. This weekend at the state meet in Cypress, the Panthers’ focus will be more on individual accomplishments. 

Heading the field for St. Mary’s will be their four stellar senior girls and Solomon Welch. Senior Danielle Stokes is probably the Panthers’ best hope for a win in Saturday’s finals, as she goes into the 100-meter hurdles with the fastest time in the state, a blazing 13.90 in last weekend’s final. But four others ran sub-14.10 in regional action, including Stokes’ rival Talia Stewart of James Logan High, so a win is anything but assured. Stokes will also run the 300-meter hurdles and likely the anchor leg of the 4x100 relay. 

Tiffany Johnson will take part in four events, the most of any athlete: the 100-meter dash, long jump and triple jump, all of which she won at the NCS meet, as well as the relay. With stiff competition in the sprint from the southern schools, it will be an accomplishment for Johnson to reach Saturday’s final; ditto for the jumps, where it will take a strong effort from the St. Mary’s senior to finish in the top 10. 

Kamaiya Warren will throw the shotput for the third straight time at the state meet, but her focus will be divided with her entry in the discus, which she missed last year. Warren set a personal best in the discus last weekend and should be in the top five in both events. 

Rounding out the senior quartet is distance runner Bridget Duffy, who will run the 3,200 and 1,600. She finished second in the shorter race at the NCS meet, which produced the top three qualifying times in the state. 

Welch qualified for the long jump, triple jump and 110-meter hurdles, but will forgo the hurdles race to concentrate on his jumps. The senior specializes in the triple jump and beat his previous best by more than a foot last weekend, so he’s clearly in top form. His mark was less than six inches behind state leader Demetrius Ragland of Tulare Western High, so with a little improvement Welch could be a state champion. 

The St. Mary’s relay teams, a traditional strength for the program, continued their success at the NCS meet, with the girls qualifying in the 4x100 relay and the boys winning spots in both events. The boys’ win in the 4x400 at the NCS meet was the school’s seventh straight victory in the event.

Out & About Calendar

Friday May 31, 2002

Friday, May 31



5 to 8 p.m. 

Alumni House, UC Berkeley Campus 

Faubulous Wine, Food, Fun Music and a Raffle 

All to benefit Cal Scholarship Fund 

$30 at the door, $25 for CAA & BOP Members 



White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Paramount Movie Classics-  

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, 1958 

Doors at 7, Mighty Wurlitzer at 7:30, Newsreel, Cartoon, Previews, and Prize give-away game Dec-O-Win and feature Film 

2025 Broadway 




Blue Riders of the Purple Sage 

Classic cowboy harmonies 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Saturday, June 1


Folk Festival Meeting 

All musicians, artists and others interested in volunteering are invited to a general meeting 

3 p.m. 

City Hall Building, 6th Floor 

2180 Milvia Street 

Wheelchair accessible 

649-1423, halih@yahoo.com 


Growing Food in the City 

An afternoon talk with Daniel Miller 

Discussion about releasing the bounty of your backyard, organically and sustainably 

1 to 4 p.m. 

Ecology Center 

2530 San Pablo at Dwight 

548-2220 x233 



50th anniversary of the Little Train at Tilden Regional Park 

Grizzly Peak Boulevard and Lomas Cantadas in Berkeley 

For more information, call 544-2200 


Sand Castle and Sand Sculpture Contest 

9 a.m. for participants registration 

9- 12 p.m. (Judging starts at noon) 

Crown Beach, Otis and Shore Line Drives 


For more information, call 521-6887 or 748-4565 



The Bluegrass Intentions 

Innovative traditionalists 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Paramount Movie Classics-  

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, 1958 

Doors at 7, Mighty Wurlitzer at 7:30, Newsreel, Cartoon, Previews, and Prize give-away game Dec-O-Win and feature Film 

2025 Broadway 




Blue Riders of the Purple Sage 

Classic cowboy harmonies 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Sunday, June 2


West Berkeley Open Air Craft Market 

Enjoy locally made crafts, food and beverages along with street performances by the Technomania Circus 

11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

4th and University 



Albany Food Fest and Music 

Enjoy a peaceful afternoon sampling food, listen to four live bands and a free eclectic art show 

Noon to 5 p.m. 

Memorial Park 

1325 Portland Avenue, Albany 

$20 in advance, $25 festival day 



Healing/Tibetan Yoga 

"Stimulating Healing and Renewal through Tibetan Yoga" 

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 




Ice Cream Social 

An annual school PTA fundraiser 

Includes a student talent show, auction, cake walk and field games 

Rosa Parks Elementary School 

Noon to 4 p.m. 



Diablo Symphony Orchestra 

Verdi Spectacular! 

Soloists: Lyric soprano Karen Anderson, soprano Aimee Puentes and tenor Min-sheng Yang. Conducted by Barbara Day Turner 

2 p.m. 

Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts 

1601 Civic Center at Locust Dr. 

Walnut Creek 

925-7469, website: www.dlrca.org 

Tickets $8, $15 and $18 


Casey Neill 

Celtic American folk roots 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Native Californian Cultures - Family Day 

Sunday, June 2, 1:30 PM- 3:30 PM  

Hearst Museum Courtyard 

Storytelling, children's games and basketry 

with Julia and Lucy Parker. Julia Parker, a cultural  

interpreter, supervises the Indian Cultural Program  

in Yosemite. Lucy Parker is a traditional artist who 

crafts jewelry and baskets as well as games. 

The Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology 

Kroeber Hall at the corner of Bancroft Way and College 

The phone number is (510) 643-7648. 

Admission is $2 for adults, $1 for seniors, and $.50 for  

16 and under- Free to the public on Thursdays. 


Monday, June 3


Poetry Express - Theme Night: "love and marriage" 

7-9 p.m. 

A community open mic welcoming all artists 

Berkeley Bakery & Cafe 

1561 Solano Avenue 



Thursday, June 6


Freedom From Tobacco 

A quit smoking class 

5:30-7:30 Thursday Evenings, June 6-July 18 

South Berkeley Senior Center 

2939 Ellis Street, (510) 981-5330 



Spencer Bohren 

New Orleans Bluesman 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Big Brother is Watching 

Speaker James Bamford, author of "Body of Secrets, anatomy of Ultra-Secret National Security Agency" 

6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 

The Independent Institute 

100 Swan Way, Oakland 

RSVP 632-1366 

Cost: $35 includes the book, $14 lecture only, $10 members. 


Friday, June 7


Fundraiser for Commond Ground  

Featuring Julia Butterfly Hill, a renowned and inspirational environmental activist  

7 p.m. 

St. Joseph The Worker School 

On the corner of Addison, b/w California and McGee 

$7 students, $12 everyone else 



What Does It Mean To Be Human? 

Debate between Princeton Professor and author Peter Singer and Chairman for Center for Bioethics & Culture, Nigel M. de S. Cameron. Moderated by host of KQED Forum, Michael Krasny 

Calvin Simmons Theater / Henry J. Kaiser Auditorium 

10 Tenth Street, Oakland 

Register online at www.thecbc.org  

$25 in advance, $45 at the door 


Cats & Jammers 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Saturday, June 8


Live Oak Park Fair 

Original fine crafts & art, tasty food, live entertainment including: Splash Circus, The Prescott Clowns, Jean-Paul Valjean (circus performance), Fat Chance Bellydance, Urban Harmony, Johnny Casino (children's lounge lizard), Zappo the Magician, with M.C. Wavy Gravy. Benefit for Camp Winnarainbow. 

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Live Oak Park 

Shattuck & Berryman 

Further information: 898-3282 

Free Admission 


Sunday, June 9


"Listening to Her Voice" 

Join Miki Raver in Sacred Circle to study Scripture, pray, dance, meditate and write for the soul's delight, and to connect with your foremothers and the feminine divine within. 

1 to 5 p.m. 

Berkeley Richmond Jewish Community Center 

1414 Walnut Street 

848-0237 x127 

$30/public, $25 BRJCC and members of co-sponsoring organizations.

Schools still face $2.5 million in cuts

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Friday May 31, 2002

The Berkeley Unified School District still needs to cut $2.5 million to balance next year’s budget, according to new figures released at the Board of Education meeting Wednesday night. 

The new deficit figure marks a $2 million jump over projections provided at last week’s meeting, when Associate Superintendent of Business Jerry Kurr predicted a $450,000 shortfall.  

District officials said last week they accidentally counted $900,000 in funds from the Berkeley Schools Excellence Project twice, artificially inflating the district’s balance sheet and leading to the erroneous deficit projection. 

The Excellence Project is a special local tax that funds class size reduction, instructional materials, maintenance, and other items in the Berkeley schools. 

The BSEP error also lead to inaccurate projections of the 2003-2004 deficit. Last week, Kurr said the 2003-2004 shortfall will be $4.4 million. Wednesday night, he bumped up his projection to $7.3 million. Kurr is predicting a $12.9 million shortfall in 2004-2005 if the district doesn’t make cuts. 

Berkeley Unified, relying in part on one-time infusions from block grants, the state lottery and awards for standardized test performance, is projecting an $880,000 surplus for the current year. 

The district presented the new figures as a part of the “third interim report” on the budget. The board voted unanimously to provide a “negative certification” on the budget, as it did with the first and second interim reports, acknowledging that the district will be unable to meet its financial obligations next year without more cuts. 

But board members, noting they have already made enough cuts to reduce next year’s shortfall from $5.4 million to $2.5 million, remained upbeat. 

“I think we’re making progress despite the negative certification,” said Board president Shirley Issel. 

“I actually see a light at the end of the tunnel,” added board member John Selawsky. “I think we’re getting there.” 

Superintendent Michele Lawrence, in an interview with the Planet, acknowledged that Berkeley Unified will carry a deficit into next year, squashing hope that the district would finish making cuts this year.  

The district is required to file a fiscal recovery plan at the end of June. Lawrence said the district will likely identify school property in the plan that it could sell to make up next year’s shortfall. But the superintendent said she does not intend to actually sell the property.  

Instead, she hopes to watch the numbers shake out in the next couple of months and then make recommendations, possibly in august, for further programmatic and personnel cuts. 

“I’m looking at this as a buying of time,” Lawrence said, referring to the identification of properties for sale in the June recovery plan. “I’m of the Scarlett O’Hara school – never sell the land.” 

School board candidate Nancy Riddle said there is some disappointment in the community that the district will not finish cutting by June. 

“There was great hope that we could make the cuts this year and start on an even keel next year,” she said. “So there’s great sadness.” 

But Riddle praised the district for combing through its programs this year and making a host of difficult decisions already. 

The Alameda County Office of Education, which has jurisdiction over Berkeley Unified, rejected last year’s budget, in part because the numbers were in disarray.  

County Superintendent Sheila Jordan said she expects this year’s budget to be in proper shape and foresees county approval.  

But while the numbers may be in proper order, the district will still face a deficit, Jordan said, and the county intends to keep in place the Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team, a state body that has advised the district on its finances since October. 

In the long run, Jordan noted, the district will have to develop internal controls that will last after FCMAT leaves. 

“We’ve been really focused on working with them to develop sustainable systems,” she said. 

District officials say conversion to a new data system, scheduled for July 1, will go a long way toward establishing long-term internal controls. 



Hate is immoral

Doug Finley
Friday May 31, 2002

To the Editor: 


What's immoral and unconstitutional about "hate crimes" laws? Just about everything.  

They decree which favored or feared groups will receive special treatment, declare certain thoughts to be thought crimes, and force what should be agencies of fair even-handed justice to engage in mind-reading. Those in favor of these concepts ought to go someplace where they'll see what it's really like to live under them, like the US or USSR of 1953, South Africa of 1960, Afghanistan of 2000, or today's North Korea. Or at least read "1984"--probably for the first time--until they understand it. 

Overt actions or statements that are more dangerous to society than such laws, such as assault, making terrorist threats, battery, and planting bombs, are well-covered by existing laws. And those who want laws protecting them from ever having their feelings hurt should be advised to quit whining, grow up and deal with it. 



Doug Finley 

San Pablo 




The Hills Heat up

Friday May 31, 2002

CONCORD — Hot, soulful jazz, pop and funk will heat up the hills of Contra Costa County on June 22, as one the Bay Area’s most prized up and coming vocal artists, Shana Morrison, joins California State University, Hayward’s Concert in the Hills series.  

Located at the university’s beautiful Contra Costa campus in Concord, the entertainment begins at 7 p.m. The free concert series continues monthly through October. 

Shana Morrison is part of a new generation of rock performers whose electrifying elements of pop, soul, jazz, and funk blend exquisitely to perform great original songs. Her powerful voice alone is enough to pack the Contra Costa campus as well as being recognized by many as Van Morrison’s daughter.  

Shana began her musical career in December 1993 when she joined Van Morrison’s Rhythm and Soul Revue as a featured artist, and can also be heard on the album “A Night In San Francisco.” She continued to tour in the U.K., Ireland and Scandinavia through 1994. During that time she also recorded a duet with Irish singer Brian Kennedy.  

Most recently, she received an ovation from the audience at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion where dad shared the bill with Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell. 

For three years now she has been singing in the San Francisco Bay Area with her group Caledonia. Their material borrows from traditional and contemporary Irish folk, rock, R&B, country, and jazz. The group has enjoyed playing to their ever increasing following there, and their self-released CD has gotten favorable reviews, as well as, airplay from such stations as KFOG and KPIX.

Local entrants in the CIF State Championship Track & Field Meet

Friday May 31, 2002

Berkeley High 

Stephan Brooks – 400-meter 

Rebekah Payne – 100-meter hurdles 


St. Mary’s College High 

Jason Bolden-Anderson – 110-meter hurdles 

Courtney Brown – 200-meter 

Bridget Duffy – 1,600-meter and 3,200-meter 

Tiffany Johnson – 100-meter, long jump and triple jump 

Willa Porter – 400-meter 

Jared Stearns – High jump 

Danielle Stokes – 100-meter hurdles and 300-meter hurdles 

Kamaiya Warren – Shotput and discus 

Solomon Welch – Long jump and triple jump 

Ed Wright – High jump 

Relays – Girls 4x100, Boys 4x100 and 4x400

City to consider boycott of Claremont

By Kurtis Alexander, Daily Planet Staff
Friday May 31, 2002

Remembering a successful foray into labor relations at Berkeley’s Raddison Hotel two years ago, city leaders are now considering using their political clout to sever a dispute between management and employees of the Claremont Resort and Spa, at 41 Tunnel Rd. 

Councilmembers Linda Maio and Kriss Worthington are preparing to ask fellow councilmembers to join them in urging a citywide boycott of the landmark hotel. 

Their condemning resolution against the Claremont, which carries no physical sanctions and is merely symbolic, is expected to be put to a council vote June 11, and calls for hotel managers to recognize their employees’ attempts to unionize. 

“We need to get more attention on what’s going on there,” said Maio. 











Student protesters broke the law, should be ‘punished’

Susanne (Sanne) K. DeWitt
Friday May 31, 2002

Dear Councilman Worthington:  


I am very dismayed that you have re-submitted your resolution asking that UCB drop charges against the protesters who disrupted classes and took over a building on the UC Berkeley campus in April. The protesters were arrested because the UC administration believed that they broke the law. Whether or not they are prosecuted and punished will be determined in court.  

Jewish students at UCB have been having a very difficult time. They have been threatened, cursed, and derided. The Jewish students have been told that they lack all humanity because they believe in Israel's right to exist. They have been told that they are “European colonialists” who ought to “go back to Europe.” 

I was present at a demonstration in which the anti-Israel (pro-Palestinian) demonstrators had a mock trial of Israel's Prime Minister Sharon, who was found “guilty” even though he had no counsel at the mock trial. Pro-Palestinian students screamed epithets at the Jewish students. I witnessed it.  

On April 9th, the anti-Israel (pro-Palestinian) protesters held a demonstration in which they broke campus laws, made hateful statements to UCB Jewish students, disrupted classes and took over a building. Not all of the protesters were students and many were off campus trouble makers who use the UCB campus as a political venue for their hate filled anti-Jewish propaganda.  

You have submitted a request for support for the April 9th protesters and recommended that the City Council request Chancellor Berdahl to not take away students' opportunity for education and drop the suspensions for the April 9th protest. You also recommended that the District Attorney drop the charges for participating in the demonstration and protest rally.  

How can you justify protecting these hate mongers from the consequences of their actions? By dropping charges against them you are saying that it is OK for people to break laws during anti-Israel and anti-Jewish demonstration and get away with it. This encourages anti-Semites to 

take any illegal action against Jews without prosecution.  


I was born in Germany and I experienced at first hand the consequences of police inaction against people who committed crimes against Jews. 

On Kristallnacht, in November 1938, mobs demonstrated against Jewish businesses and Synagogues and the authorities failed to stop themand prosecute them. This had followed several years of a deliberate policy of allowing civilians to persecute Jews. In 1933 there was a boycott of Jewish businesses and harassment of Jewish businesses and institutions and organizations. The governments did nothing to stop this behavior. Little by little the populace became bolder and bolder in its harassment of the Jews. By the time that the Nazis started arresting 

Jews (I was arrested myself on Kristallnacht in Munich at the Jewish Old Aged Home where my father was the physician) there was no outcry.  

I see this same process starting here. Demonstrators harass Jews on campus and openly break laws yet you introduce a resolution to the City 

Council asking the Chancellor to drop charges against these hooligans. I cannot understand how you can say that criminal conduct should go 

unpunished when that it is precisely what you are doing. The fact that the criminal conduct was committed by anti-Israel demonstrators 

suggests that you would allow these anti-Israel demonstrators to have carte blanche in persecuting Jews.  

If you have a sense of history and decency, please drop this resolution.  


Susanne (Sanne) K. DeWitt  



Friday May 31, 2002

On May 31, 1962, World War II Gestapo official Adolf Eichmann was hanged in Israel for his role in the Nazi Holocaust. 

On this date: 

In 1819, poet Walt Whitman was born in West Hill, N.Y. 

In 1889, more than 2,000 people perished when a dam break sent water rushing through Johnstown, Pa. 

In 1910, the Union of SoutEvery ambitious man is a captive and every covetous one a pauper.” — Arab proverb. 

In 1913, the 17th amendment to the Constitution, providing for the popular election of U.S. senators, was declared in effect. 

In 1961, South Africa became an independent republic. 

In 1970, tens of thousands of people died in an earthquake in Peru. 

In 1977, the trans-Alaska oil pipeline, three years in the making, was completed. 

In 1989, House Speaker Jim Wright, dogged by questions about his ethics, announced he would resign. (Thomas Foley later succeeded him.) 

In 1991, leaders of Angola’s two warring factions signed a peace treaty, ending a 16-year-old civil war. 

In 1994, the United States announced it was no longer aiming long-range nuclear missiles at targets in the former Soviet Union. 

Ten years ago: 

An estimated 50,000 people demonstrated in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, against Communist-organized elections. “Crazy for You” was named Broadway’s best musical at the Tony Awards; “Dancing at Lughnasa” was named best play. 

Five years ago:  

Pope John Paul II began an 11-day tour of his native Poland, his seventh visit since assuming the papacy. 

One year ago: Veteran FBI agent Robert Hanssen pleaded innocent to charges of spying for Moscow. (He later changed his plea to guilty and was sentenced to life in prison.) Moderate PLO leader Faisal Husseini died at age 60. Actress and TV personality Arlene Francis died in San Francisco at age 93. 

Today’s Birthdays:  

Prince Rainier of Monaco is 79. Actress Elaine Stewart is 73. Actor-director Clint Eastwood is 72. Opera singer Shirley Verrett is 69. Actor Keir Dullea is 66. Singer Peter Yarrow is 64. Singer Johnny Paycheck is 64. Former Anglican Church envoy Terry Waite is 63. Singer-musician Augie Meyers is 62. Actress Sharon Gless is 59. Football Hall-of-Famer Joe Namath is 59. Actor Tom Berenger is 52. Actor Gregory Harrison is 52. Comedian Chris Elliott is 42. Actor Kyle Secor is 42. Actress Lea Thompson is 41. Singer Corey Hart is 40. Actress Tonya Pinkins is 40. Rapper DMC is 38. Rapper Kid Frost is 38. Actress Brooke Shields is 37. Rock musician Scott Klopfenstein (Reel Big Fish) is 25. Actor Curtis Williams Jr. is 15. 

Leaders & Lawmakers

Friday May 31, 2002

City Council 


Mayor Shirley Dean 

Phone: (510) 981-7100 

Linda Maio, District 1 

Phone: (510) 981-7110 

Margaret Breland, District 2 

Phone: (510) 981-7120 

Maudelle Shirek, District 3 

Phone: (510) 981-7130 

Dona Spring, District 4 

Phone: (510) 981-7140 

Miriam Hawley, District 5 

Phone: (510) 981-7150 

Betty Olds, District 6 

Phone: (510) 981-7160 

Kriss Worthington, District 7 

Phone: (510) 981-7170 

Polly Armstrong, District 8 

Phone: (510) 981-7180 


City of Berkeley 

2180 Milvia St. 

Berkeley, CA 94704 

e-mail addresses are: 



(e.g. dspring@ci.berkeley.ca.us) 


School Board 


Shirley Issel, President 

Joaquin Rivera, Vice President 

Terry Doran, Director 

Ted Schultz, Director 

John Selawsky, Director 

Sarena Chandler, student director 

Berkeley Unified School District 

2134 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way 

Berkeley, CA 94704 

Voicemail: (510) 644-6550 






Keith Carson  

Board of Supervisors Dist. 5 

1221 Oak Street, Oakland, 94612  




Darryl Moore, Peralta Community College District, Area 4 

333 E. 8th St. 

Oakland, 94606 




Jerome Wiggins, Alameda  

County Board of Education, Area 1 

313 W. Winton Ave 

Hayward, 94544-1198 

(510) 670-4145 





Dion Aroner 

14th Assembly District 

918 Parker St., Suite A-13 

Berkeley, CA 94710 

Phone: (510) 540-3660 

State Capitol, Room 2163 

Sacramento, CA 95814 

Phone: (916) 319-2014 



Don Perata, 9th Senate District 

1515 Clay St., Suite 2202 

Oakland, CA 94612 

Phone: (510) 286-1333 

State Capitol, Room 4061 

Sacramento, CA 95814 

Phone: (916) 445-6577 


Survivors of violence take to the stage

By Robert Hall, Special to the Daily Planet
Friday May 31, 2002

xA new kind of theater that thrusts real life movingly onto the stage will premier in Berkeley for the first time.  

Don’t expect "The Laramie Project" or "The Colour of Justice," in which professional actors mouth what people said months or years ago. The Soapstone "actors" are the actual participants in the harrowing stories they tell, as if Matthew Shepherd could be summoned from his bleak Wyoming grave to bear witness to his victimization. 

"This is just so powerful!" exclaimed Ruth Morgan, director of Community Works, a Berkeley-based non-profit organization committed to building fellowship through art and education.  

The company that walks this daring tightrope is called Soapstone Theater, and its genesis is just as surprising as its method. It grew out of the criminal justice system. Roberto Gutierre Varea, its director, had been teaching theater at the San Francisco County Jail for about a year when he got the chance to help five male ex-offenders develop a drama based on their experiences. The result, "Smoke and Mirrors," played to packed houses in various venues, including San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral.  

This led Soapstone to invite women to work with them. That collaboration gave birth to "(Un)common Ground," which proved equally successful. A third project, "Boxing with Ghosts: 8 Tales of Death and Resurrection," just had a 3-night run in San Francisco, where leaders of Berkeley’s Domestic Violence Program saw it.  

As Morgan related, "They were so excited, they contracted to bring it here." 

Though the criminal justice system may seem focused on punishment, Soapstone Theater offers a hopeful sign of other means. Supported by the Sheriff’s Department, it aims at healing. Its actor/playwrights are male ex-offenders and women survivors of violence, who, as Varea says, "explore the impact violence has on perpetrators and survivors alike."  

But they don’t confine that exploration to the narrow bounds of self, but offer it to their community, in an act of what Ruth Morgan calls "restorative justice." 

Soapstone hopes art can redeem victims, victimizers and society, too.  

In "Boxing with Ghosts" we meet real people, Elijah, Mauryne, Raja, Walter, Jennifer, Ophelia, Juanita, Derrie. Survivors of addiction and anorexia, child abuse and prison riots, they don’t disguise their names or pull punches with the truth. Instead they offer their tales with scrupulous and moving honesty, describing what went down, while we witness their testimony in an almost tribal way.  

"We believe this builds community," Morgan said. Are we in the audience free of failure and loss? Aren’t we sometimes victimizers and victims, too? "We see our likeness in them,"Morgan said.  

But can art really heal? As one recovering addict says of his participation, "This play has helped me do a lot of healing. Yeah, it’s really hard on us, but it’s important for us to tell other people, I just want this to work."  

Another says, "Now I have a chance to be that loving, caring young man my grandmother always told me I could be." 

Tickets are $8 to $15. Sponsored by the California Arts Council and the City of Berkeley, it plays at the Berkeley Art Center, 1275 Walnut Street, once only, on May 31, at 8 p.m.

News of the Weird

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

Sony felt the pain 


SAN FRANCISCO — Some music fans are trying to fake out CD copy protection technology with the stroke of a felt-tip pen. 

The tactic is being used in Europe, where Sony is trying out a copy protection method. That model won’t be coming to America, the company says. 

The crack in the copy protection is the talk of the town on Internet message boards, though Digital Audio Disc Corporation, Sony Corp.’s CD manufacturing unit, is not amused. 

“Consumers should be aware that attempting to circumvent copy control by writing or attaching anything to the disc can result in permanent damage to the disc, and possible damage to the playback device,” Sony DADC said in a statement last week. 


All five major recording labels are in trials with various copy protection schemes, mostly in the European market. 

Word of cracks in Sony’s copy protection first surfaced on a German Web site, www.chip.de. The new technology is contained on all of Sony’s CD latest releases in Europe from performers including Celine Dion, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez. The protection is supposed to thwart users from ripping CD tracks to MP3 files by placing a small bit of computer data on the disc.  





Ancient footprints give impression of dinosaurs life, researchers say

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

WASHINGTON — Plant-eating dinosaurs of different species may have herded together, to escape meat-eaters nearby, according to an analysis of 163 million-year-old dino footprints on a muddy coastal plain in England. 

In a study appearing Friday in the journal Science, British researchers say that 40 tracks of dinosaur footprints hint at a life and death struggle between prey and hunter in the days when dinosaurs ruled the world. 

The tracks suggest that large and lumbering plant eaters of different types — some as long as 90 feet and weighing 10 tons or more — walked together across an open tidal plain, perhaps fleeing for their lives. These animals were all sauropods, but of different types. 

On a nearby track, the researchers also found the footprints of the smaller, faster Megalosaurus, a toothy meat eater that may have been more than 60 feet long. The tracks were going the same direction at about the same time as the sauropods. The Megalosaurus was a theropod, the same family as Tyrannosaurus rex, a heavyweight carnivore that developed millions of years later. 

“The theropods there suggests that they were tracking the sauropods,” said Julia Day, a paleontologist at the University of Cambridge, England, and first author of the Science study. 

Day said the tracks of the sauropods show they were miles from the nearest heavy growth of plants, which was unusual because it is believed the huge vegetarians required food almost constantly. 

“Sauropods have to keep eating and yet they were far away from any vegetation,” said Day. “We believe the animals were either migrating or walked out there to get away from the predators.” 

CHP uner fire over Golden Gate Bridge protest

Daily Planet Wire Service
Friday May 31, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — The California Highway Patrol today was criticized by civil rights groups demanding an investigation into the arrest of an 11-year-old Palestinian girl they allege was “brutally attacked” when an anti-war demonstration on the Golden Gate Bridge soured Saturday. 

“In our mind the CHP has committed a hate crime against a child of color,” said a member of the Arab-Anti Discrimination Committee at a news conference outside the CHP San Francisco office this afternoon. “It's a severe blow to the sense of security and sense of safety of the ethnic community.” 

Los Gatos fifth-grader Sophia Ibrahim was arrested on felony assault of a peace officer after she allegedly took a swing at a CHP officer trying to shuttle the unruly crowd off the bridge before the demonstration's permit expired. The groups allege four officers pinned the girl to the ground, leaving her with bruised wrists and ankles from restraints, as well as deeper psychological wounds. 

“That girl was assaulted in a ridiculous abuse of power by the CHP when she was simply exercising her constitutional right to protest,'” a member of Bay Area Police Watch said. “They violated her First Amendment rights.” 

CHP spokesman Wayne Ziese said officers used “reasonable restraint” against the girl that at the time they estimated to be about 16.  

Ziese said her ethnicity was not taken into account, and she was arrested for the alleged assault which the groups deny occurred. 

Around 30 others were arrested that day, mostly for obstructing the bridge walkway and resisting arrest, at was intended to be a peaceful demonstration opposing U.S. military policies in Afghanistan and the Middle  

East. Ibrahim's brother, 21-year-old Mousa Ibrahim, was also arrested for felony child endangerment for bringing the girl to the demonstration. 

“As a parent, if I were going to take a child to an event where such a disruption is possible and things start to go sideways, I would remove that child from the scene right away,'” Ziese said. 

The CHP says the demonstration organizer, All's People Coalition to Stop U.S. Terror and Occupation, had a permit for the protesters to march across the bridge on the eastern walkway from San Francisco to Marin County and back again between the hours of noon and 2 p.m. 

But by 1:35 p.m., the group had not yet completed the first leg of its journey, so bridge officials requested that the CHP order them to turn around and vacate the bridge immediately. Around 150 officers from various agencies were at the scene; around the same number of protesters were in attendance. 

The law enforcement action angered the protesters, who argued that the permit had not yet expired and that there was no need for the CHP to respond armed with batons and pepper spray. The marchers said that it was bad judgment by the CHP that caused the conflict and brought bridge-bound traffic to a standstill for hours. 

Ziese said batons and pepper spray are a necessary defensive  

measures used to protect the officers. 

At Friday's news conference a coalition of civil rights organizations, including the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the American Civil Liberties Union, called for a full investigation into the incident and for the officers who arrested young Ibrahim to be reprimanded. 

They additionally want the CHP officers to undergo sensitivity training that focuses on communities that are the targets of hate crimes.  

Further, they want the CHP to use community input to re-evaluate their crowd control policies for dealing with peaceful demonstrations. 

Ziese said the CHP's policies were reworked and approved by a citizens oversight committee after the Rodney King riots in the early 1990s. 

The groups have not contacted the CHP about their demands, Ziese said, and have only made complaints to the media thus far. 

“Once we receive a complaint, from the organizations or the family, we would launch an investigation,” Ziese said. “We have not received a complaint.”

Sony’s CD protection method foiled with a felt tip pen

By Ron Harris, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

Data track on European music discs prevents use on PCs, but simple defeat discovered by users 


SAN FRANCISCO – Amid Internet message board reports that Sony’s copy-protection scheme for CDs released in Europe easily can be defeated with a felt tip pen, the corporation is warning consumers against using the new hacking tactic. 

Sony Digital Audio Disc Corporation, Sony Corp.’s CD manufacturing unit, said in a statement that users trying to thwart the copy-protection scheme risk ruining their CDs and their playback devices. 

“Sony DADC is aware that consumers are trying to circumvent copy-control technology with different means, which may lead to different and unpredictable results in different environments,” Sony DADC said on May 22. “Consumers should be aware that attempting to circumvent copy control by writing or attaching anything to the disc can result in permanent damage to the disc, and possible damage to the playback device.” 

Word surfaced on a German Web site, www.chip.de, that some music fans and technology tinkerers successfully had faked out Sony’s copy protection by marking the music CDs with a felt tip pen or attaching small pieces of paper to the disc. 

Sony’s recent European CD releases from artists such as Celine Dion, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez contain Sony DADC’s copy-protection method, marketed as key2audio. The system normally prevents users from ripping CD tracks to MP3 files by placing a small bit of computer data on the disc during the process of making the glass master CD. 

Then, instead of recognizing individual audio tracks, a computer reads the data track and ignores the audio tracks, preventing PC playback of the music. Only standalone devices such as home stereos and portable CD players can recognize and play the audio tracks on the discs. 

By obscuring the data track with a felt pen mark or a piece of opaque adhesive paper, protected discs like Dion’s have been made playable and copyable on home computers. 

Sony claims 22 million CDs containing key2audio technology have been sold. 

The copy-protection scheme on Dion’s latest CD, “A New Day Has Come,” purchased in Berlin, easily was defeated by using the felt tip marker method. An ink line drawn across the copy-protection data portion of the CD allowed the disc to be copied digitally. 

But the original CD then no longer worked in a standard CD player. 

Sony Music Entertainment labels have yet to unleash copy-protected CDs in the U.S. market, content so far to practice on Europeans until they perfect the system. The problem in much of Europe is not MP3 trading via file-sharing networks such as Morpheus and Gnutella, but CD duplication to blank discs. 

Sony plans to sate U.S. consumer appetites for digital-format music by including condensed copy-protected song files alongside the regular song files. That will allow users to play the CDs on their own computer, but not to copy music onto the hard drive or share it over the Internet. 

“When copy-protected CDs are introduced in the United States, they will contain second sessions technology so that computer playback will be possible,” a Sony spokeswoman said. 

CD players in home computers normally use a laser to read “pits” containing data on the disc. But copy-protection schemes interrupt this normal performance by sending instructions to the computer not to play the discs. 

The soundtrack to the movie “The Fast and the Furious,” released by Universal, contains a warning label that each track is protected against unauthorized copying. Once the CD was placed in a PC CD tray, a small software audio player encoded onto the music discs popped up on the monitor and began to play the first track. 

But there was no problem ripping the tracks to unprotected MP3 files using the popular MusicMatch software, despite the warning label. 

Universal uses technology from Tel Aviv, Israel-based Midbar called Cactus Data Shield, or CDS. Midbar described the defeat of its CD protection as rare, though it was done using both MusicMatch software and Microsoft Windows Media player, two of the more common tools for ripping and encoding music into compressed digital formats. 

“As a security company, Midbar does not comment on specific titles. It should be noted however, that CDS is a renewable and regularly updated technology. In the extremely few cases where someone does successfully rip one track or more, it is because of a specific drive and software combination,” said Noam Zur, Midbar’s vice president of sales and marketing. “There is no universal hack to circumvent CDS technology.” 

Oracle defends deals with California and other states

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

SACRAMENTO – Oracle Corp. is defending its software deals with California and other states after being accused of misleading customers about the costly contracts, a newspaper reported. 

Officials from Toronto to Atlanta are scrambling to get out of their agreements with the Redwood Shores-based software company, the San Jose Mercury News reported Thursday. 

The state of Georgia forced Oracle to renegotiate a major software deal after state officials concluded they would not save as much money as Oracle promised. 

In Toronto, city officials are trying to shed a $13 million deal that they say burdened them with thousands of database licenses they don’t need. 

In Ohio, state officials pulled the plug on an Oracle deal after they decided the company had inflated the state’s need for software. 

Oracle, which currently is working with state officials to void California’s deal, refused to comment for the newspaper’s story. A call to the company Thursday was not immediately returned. Oracle, however, has pointed 

“Oracle has a long tradition of aggressive sales and pricing tactics,” said Betsy Burton, an analyst for Gartner, a Connecticut-based market research group that has been critical of Oracle. “But the fact is that today they are losing business to Microsoft and IBM because of their tactics.” 

Assemblyman Dean Florez, the Bakersfield Democrat leading the legislative inquiry, said Wednesday he plans to hear testimony next week from other states that have had run-ins with Oracle. 

The state of California for decades has relied on Oracle database software to track data from criminal justice records to payrolls. But the company’s efforts last year to sell the state on consolidating its software purchases have come under increasing scrutiny. 

Last month, the state auditor concluded that the $95 million to $123 million contract, initially promoted as a way for California to save more than $100 million, could cost taxpayers millions of dollars for unneeded software. 

Oracle vehemently has denied it did anything improper, and points to its own analysis of the contract that shows it could save California taxpayers more than $100 million over the next decade.

Computer giants closing during week of July 4th to save money

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

PALO ALTO – Still facing hard times, computing giants Hewlett-Packard Co. and Sun Microsystems Inc. will close shop during the week of Independence Day and require employees to go without pay or use up vacation time. 

Shutting down from June 30 through July 6 in the United States will contribute to “operational savings,” HP spokeswoman Judy Radlinsky said Thursday, though she would not elaborate on the amount. Palo Alto-based HP has 74,000 U.S. employees and 150,000 overall. 

HP executives decided on the plan after getting “good feedback” from former employees of Compaq Computer Corp. about its closure during the holiday last year, Radlinsky said. HP acquired Compaq on May 3. 

Sun is instituting a similar plan that same week, spokeswoman Diane Carlini said. The Santa Clara-based company, which has 32,000 employees in the United States and 39,000 overall, also closed over the Fourth of July week last year. 

Both companies still will count the Fourth of July as a paid day off. 

The cost-cutting moves come as the technology industry remains in a slump. A report released Thursday by Merrill Lynch said corporate technology spending is essentially flat this year.

Ladders can be dangerous without proper use

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recently published statistics that illustrate the dangers of ladder accidents. 

• In the United States more than 500,000 people a year are treated for ladder-related injuries, and that number does not include people who suffered injuries but did not go to a medical care provider for treatment. 

• About 300 people in this country die from ladder-related injuries annually. 

• Estimated annual cost of ladder-related injuries is $11 billion, including work loss, medical, legal, liability and pain-and-suffering expenses. 

You can avoid becoming one of these statistics by having the right ladder for the job and using it properly. 

The notion that ladder safety begins when you place your foot on the first step is wrong. Ladder safety really begins when you shop for a ladder – a daunting task considering all the choices. 

First is ladder style – step or extension? Often you will need both. A stepladder can be used indoors and outdoors, but has height limitations. An extension ladder is used primarily outdoors where extra height is needed, as in the case of a two-story home. An extension ladder can be useful indoors where unusually high ceilings exist. 

Next is size. When it comes to ladders, size matters. For stepladders, the ladder’s height plus 4 feet equals the total reach. For example: a 4-foot ladder can be used to reach an 8-foot ceiling. Use a 6-foot ladder to reach a 10-foot ceiling, and so on. For an extension ladder, the base and upper sections must overlap. So, a 20-foot extension ladder is only good for about 17-feet. The ladder must travel above the roofline 2- to 3-feet so that it can be used for balance as you climb. 

Ladders are sold by “duty rating” – how much weight a ladder is rated to carry. The more weight it will hold, the stronger it must be. The American National Safety Institute (ANSI) establishes duty rating. The five duty ratings and their respective load capacities are as follows: Type IAA special duty – 375 pounds; Type IA extra heavy duty – 300 pounds; Type I heavy duty – 250 pounds; Type II medium duty – 225 pounds; and Type III light duty – 200 pounds. When in doubt, always err on the side of a heavier duty rating. 

The final step in choosing a ladder is construction material. The choices are wood, aluminum and fiberglass. The oldest and most familiar ladder is wood. Wood ladders have a solid, sturdy feeling. However, the fact that they are heavy makes them a bit cumbersome and somewhat difficult to transport. Also, wood must be regularly maintained to prevent cracking, splitting and rotting. Wood is economical and is said not to conduct electricity when clean and dry. If you do lots of electrical work, we suggest that you choose a fiberglass ladder. 

Ladders made from high-strength aluminum are a lightweight, rot-free alternative to wood. But aluminum ladders have been around long enough to prove that they don’t last any longer than wood. Salt air or chemicals can corrode – and weaken – an aluminum ladder in no time. 

Fiberglass has become as popular as aluminum was when it first replaced wood. Fiberglass ladders are lighter than wood but heavier than aluminum. They aren’t subject to rot, they don’t bend easily and they come in several attractive colors. Manufacturers say that they will last generations – just what they said about aluminum. We know that plastics and resins oxidize in the same fashion as all other carbon-based materials. Only time will tell whether fiberglass will last longer than the others. 

Choosing the right ladder is only part of the safety equation. Proper use and maintenance will help ensure that you don’t become one of the unfortunate statistics that we mentioned earlier. 

Always read and abide by the instruction labels and stickers on a ladder before setting foot on it. Failure to do so could have devastating consequences. Make a thorough inspection to be sure it’s safe and in good working order. There’s no excuse for using an unsafe ladder. Even a perfectly good ladder can be unsafe if not used properly. 

Here are some rules and a few tips that could help prevent a ladder accident in your home, and perhaps serious injury: 

Rule 1: Never use a worn-out ladder. In some instances they can be repaired, but more often than not, it is advisable to get a new one. 

Rule 2: Never use a ladder unless it is rated to carry your weight. Ladders are rated by the amount of weight that they can carry. If the salesperson at the store can’t tell you the weight that the ladder is capable of carrying, find another store. 

Rule 3: Use a ladder that is the right length for the job. For stepladders, the ladder’s height plus 4 feet equals the total reach. And that warning at the top, “this is not a step,” means just that. For an extension ladder, the base and upper sections must overlap. So, a 20-foot extension ladder is only good for about 17-feet. The ladder must travel above the roofline 2- to 3-feet so that it can be used for balance as you climb onto the roof. 

Rule 4: Rest the ladder properly. Don’t rest the high leg on a block of wood or a brick. Instead, dig a hole for the lower leg. Also, don’t stand the ladder up at too little or too great of an angel. The safe angle is about 75 degrees. Remember, too, much angle reduces the ladder’s strength and not enough angle could cause you to tip over backward. Seventy-five degrees is an angel equal to when the minute hand of a clock is directly in between the 12 and the one, or 75 degrees from the three.

LA Archdiocese hires public relation firm to help with scandal

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

LOS ANGELES – The nation’s largest Roman Catholic archdiocese has hired a public relations firm to help deal with the ongoing priest abuse scandal. 

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles tapped Sitrick & Co., a Century City-based company that has dealt with high-profile cases. The company’s clients have included troubled energy company Dynegy Inc., Global Crossing during its bankruptcy, actress Halle Berry following a traffic accident and comedian Paula Poundstone after her child-endangerment case. 

The archdiocese was being advised by another public relations firm but church officials hired a new attorney, J. Michael Hennigan, who recommended Sitrick & Co. 

“We’re really proud to be involved in this,” said Michael Sitrick, 54. “We’re confident the church is taking proactive measures to make sure this doesn’t happen again. I don’t have to be Catholic to be anxious to help them work through this.” 

Cardinal Roger Mahony has tried to stave off questions from the public and media about the priest abuse scandal. More than 30 current or former priests of the archdiocese are now under investigation by law enforcement authorities for alleged sexual misconduct with children. 

Hennigan chose Sitrick because the archdiocese “was not doing well in the press. I thought the press was focusing on the very negative aspects without the whole story coming out. 

Sitrick said the first order of business will be attempting to separate perception from reality. 

“We’re trying to get perceptions to equal reality,” he said. “You can’t do anything about what was, only what is and what will be.” 

Church officials did not disclose how much the public relations firm will receive for its work. However, Sitrick charged Orange County more than $400,000 when it dealt with bankruptcy in the mid-1990s.

Santa Rosa Diocese to require fingerprinting of its priests

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

Church also encouraging public to report incindents of abuse to police 


SANTA ROSA – The Santa Rosa Diocese has begun fingerprinting priests and other employees who work with children to identify sex offenders, and is encouraging the public to report incidents of abuse directly to the authorities. 

The announcement came Wednesday as part of the diocese’s updated sexual misconduct policy, which also requires background questionnaires from prospective employees and regular church volunteers. 

The diocese introduced the fingerprinting some months back, but had not begun to actively implement it until now. 

“It’s a priority. It needs to be done now,” said diocese spokeswoman Deirdre Frontczak. 

The Santa Rosa Diocese, which stretches from Sonoma County to Oregon, aims to fingerprint all its priests. Frontczak said she hopes a significant number of clergy will get it done at a meeting this June. 

Once taken, the prints will be sent to the state Department of Justice for a criminal records check. People convicted of felonies involving child abuse will not be permitted to stay in a position in which they have contact with children. 

Six priests from the Santa Rosa Diocese have been publicly accused of molesting children. The diocese has acknowledged paying $7.4 million to settle sex abuse claims. 

The Monterey Diocese began requiring fingerprinting of priests earlier this month, but took the policy a step further when it required fingerprinting of volunteers, too. 

In Los Angeles, the nation’s largest Roman Catholic archdiocese has hired a public relations firm to help deal with the ongoing priest abuse scandal. 

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles tapped Sitrick & Co., a Century City-based company that has dealt with high-profile cases. The company’s clients have included troubled energy company Dynegy Inc., Global Crossing during its bankruptcy, actress Halle Berry following a traffic accident and comedian Paula Poundstone, who was charged with child endangerment. 

The archdiocese was being advised by another public relations firm, but church officials hired a new attorney, J. Michael Hennigan, who recommended Sitrick & Co. 

“We’re really proud to be involved in this,” said Michael Sitrick, 54. “We’re confident the church is taking proactive measures to make sure this doesn’t happen again. I don’t have to be Catholic to be anxious to help them work through this.” 

Cardinal Roger Mahony has tried to stave off questions from the public and media about the priest abuse scandal. More than 30 current or former priests of the archdiocese are now under investigation by law enforcement authorities for alleged sexual misconduct with children. 

Hennigan said he chose Sitrick because the archdiocese “was not doing well in the press. I thought the press was focusing on the very negative aspects without the whole story coming out.” 

Sitrick said the first order of business will be attempting to separate perception from reality. 

“We’re trying to get perceptions to equal reality,” he said. “You can’t do anything about what was, only what is and what will be.” 

Church officials did not disclose how much the public relations firm will receive for its work. However, Sitrick charged Orange County more than $400,000 when it dealt with its bankruptcy in the mid-1990s.

Mom whose daughter was expelled from school poses for Playboy

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

RANCHO CORDOVA – Days after giving up her job as a stripper so her 5-year-old daughter could finish kindergarten at her Christian school, a Rancho Cordova mother pocketed an undisclosed sum to pose nude for Playboy’s Web site. 

Officials at Capital Christian School in Sacramento were shocked when they found out Wednesday that Christina Silvas, 24, once again violated the standards of the agreement she had signed. This time though, they said they would not expel her daughter, who has only a week left in the school year. 

“This is a big disappointment and a big setback from the path that we appeared to be on,” Pastor Rick Cole told The San Francisco Chronicle afternoon edition Thursday. 

The problem erupted two weeks ago when school officials discovered that Silvas was working as a nude dancer at a Sacramento strip club. 

Silvas told Cole that she was forced to take the job to pay for the school’s $400 monthly tuition. 

Silvas refused to quit when Cole reminded her of the Christian Philosophy agreement she signed. Church officials then expelled Silvas’ daughter with three weeks of school left. 

But after Silvas’ plight received national attention, the school allowed her daughter to return. Silvas received numerous job offers and took a job at a morning radio station program in Sacramento. She agreed to quit strip dancing, at least until her daughter could finish the school year. 

But this week, Silvas flew to Chicago to shoot her nude Playboy.com centerfold and sit down for an interview. 

Silvas told Playboy.com that although she had agreed to quit stripping so that her daughter could return to school, she hadn’t agreed to not pose nude for Playboy. 

“Before all of this happened, I was extremely interested in posing,” Silvas said.

Deal to restore 16,500 acres of salt ponds to wetlands

By Colleen Valles, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

Renovation will cost at least $100 million of state and federal money 


FREMONT – State and federal officials have joined philanthropic groups in pledging $100 million to buy 16,500 acres of salt ponds ringing San Francisco Bay, launching the largest wetlands restoration project on the West Coast. 

After negotiations led by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., Cargill Salt agreed to sell the land at 40 percent of its appraised value. The Minneapolis-based agribusiness giant also is responsible for cleanup of the land, which includes 1,400 acres along the Napa River. 

“Today we’re taking the first steps to reverse the course of history. Together we will restore an extraordinary but endangered natural resource,” Gov. Gray Davis said in formally announcing the deal Wednesday. “For the last century, we did not do a very good job of protective this resource.” 

The plan pools money from state and federal governments, as well as four private foundations, to turn the salt flats into habitat for both endemic species and migratory birds flying between Alaska and the tropics. 

Feinstein said Cargill came down in price $200 million from its original demand, in part by removing about 400 acres of salt ponds in Redwood City from the deal. 

“At $300 million, we didn’t have a deal,” Feinstein said. 

Cargill Chief Executive Officer Warren Staley said the company had been considering restoration for some time, and decided to sell now because the market was soft. 

“We looked at the marketplace, which wasn’t as good as it was previously,” he said, adding that the company has not yet decided what to do with those 400 acres in Redwood City. 

The bay used to have 190,000 acres of tidal marsh, but the bulk of that land has been diked, drained, filled or paved. Now, only about 20 percent of the marsh survives. 

The Cargill land has been involved in salt production since the 1850s, which will mean intensive cleanup of a highly concentrated brine that is toxic in its solid form. Purifying the land could take decades and the cost has been estimated between $200 million and $1 billion. 

“Some of these ponds should be relatively easy to restore,” said David Lewis, executive director of Save San Francisco Bay Association. “Other ponds will be more difficult.” 

The federal government will chip in $8 million for the project. The state will cover the rest of the costs with four private-sector partners: the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund. 

The agencies and charities have pledged $35 million for planning and management beyond the $100 million purchase price. 

A Cargill spokeswoman said the company will not lay off any of its 200 employees at its Newark plant and plans to keep producing 650 tons of salt a year on the 11,000 acres it will retain. 

“The acquisition is based on land we no longer need for salt production,” said spokeswoman Lori Johnson. 

Most of the land is expected to become part of the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The rest will be part of a state-run wildlife preserve. 

Diluting the ponds and restoring them to healthy marshes will rank as the largest wetlands restoration project attempted on the West Coast, rivaled only by projects to restore the Florida Everglades and Chesapeake Bay. 

“The Everglades in Florida is the largest wetland restoration in the country, and this is the largest shoreline restoration that increases tidal wetlands,” said California Resources Secretary Mary Nichols.

Lawmakers clear way for budget negotiations

By Steve Lawrence, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

SACRAMENTO – Lawmakers broke an initial state budget deadlock Thursday after Senate Democrats agreed to remove $3.5 billion in tax increases from a preliminary budget plan. 

The move cleared the way for the Senate to approve its version of the budget 27-12, and for a six-member, two-house conference committee to begin efforts to put together a budget compromise. 

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Steve Peace, D-El Cajon, said the committee will have to resolve “very substantial differences of opinions,” including how to close a $4.5 billion budget hole. 

Democrats want to fill $3.5 billion of that gap with tax hikes, he said. Republicans want more budget cuts. 

The Assembly also approved its $99.3 billion version of the budget Thursday, but only after Democratic leaders stripped out appropriations to allow the measure to move to the Senate on a simple majority, 49-28 vote. 

The Senate refused to use that tactic and its budget plan stalled initially Thursday two votes short of the two-thirds majority it needed. 

But Senate Minority Leader Jim Brulte, R-Rancho Cucamonga, and Sen. Maurice Johannessen, R-Redding, agreed to vote for it after the tax increases were removed. One Democrat, Sen. Ed Vincent, D-Inglewood, was absent from the vote. 

Democrats have majorities in both houses but they need at least one Republican in the Senate and four in the Assembly to put together the two-thirds majorities that will ultimately be needed to approve a budget bill. 

The chief budget stumbling block for Republicans is increases in vehicle fees and tobacco taxes and a suspension of business loss tax write-offs proposed by Gov. Gray Davis to help close a $23.6 billion revenue shortfall. 

Peace warned that if the conference committee didn’t start work soon lawmakers wouldn’t make the June 15 constitutional deadline for putting a budget on the governor’s desk. 

There’s no penalty if they don’t pass a budget by that frequently missed deadline, but Senate President Pro Tem John Burton, D-San Francisco, warned that state school aid could be cut off and state employees’ pay cut to minimum wages if a budget isn’t in place by July 1, the start of a new fiscal year. 

An appeals court ruled Wednesday that state Controller Kathleen Connell can pay minimum wages to state employees, make payments on state debts and pay judges’ salaries in the absence of a budget. 

But the court said the state can’t make support payments to public schools without a budget in place. 

Sen. Don Perata, D-Oakland, warned Republicans that if they hold up the budget and cripple state government it could backfire on them in the November elections. 

“If this body allows the government of the state to be impaired the way the federal government was impaired in 1995, then the public will see its way clear to find out who was responsible,” he said. 

“Making operation of the state a partisan rather than a nonpartisan operation does not benefit anyone.” 

“This is not partisanship,” replied Sen. Ross Johnson, R-Irvine. “Republicans have been telling you for years that we were on course for a fiscal train wreck. The day of reckoning has come and we’re still waiting for ... a complete budget plan, a budget plan that will work.” 

Sen. Richard Polanco, D-Los Angeles, challenged Republicans to offer their own budget proposals. “If you’re not interested in this particular plan then submit where you want the cuts to occur,” he said. 

“Let’s get this budget over to the Assembly side. Let’s not sit around here day in and day out.” 

Meanwhile, a group of law enforcement leaders urged lawmakers to approve Davis’ proposals, saying they’re worried that deeper budget cuts could hurt efforts to prepare for the possibility of terrorist attacks. 

“It’s not a matter of...if, it’s a matter of when for this new war we’re in. So we have to be prepared,” said Redding Police Chief Bob Blankenship.

LA sheriff delays plan to release 400 inmates due to budget cuts

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

LOS ANGELES – The head of the nation’s largest sheriff’s department on Thursday delayed plans to release 400 jail prisoners to deal with a $100 million budget cut proposed by Los Angeles County supervisors. 

Sheriff Lee Baca, in a budget battle with the board, had said he would release the inmates, who were charged with misdemeanors, starting at midnight Thursday. 

The department, operating on a $1.6 billion budget, provides law enforcement for more than 2 million people in a 3,100-square-mile area and runs a vast jail system with 19,000 prisoners. It has more than 8,000 deputies and 5,000 civilian employees. 

While intensifying his criticism of county supervisors, Baca said it would go against his “conscience” to release the inmates. He delayed the release until at least July 1. 

“I can’t do things with 100 million dollars less money and not affect the way the whole system works,” Baca said. 

The inmates that would have been freed were being held on bail amounts of $25,000 or less. They would have been released with orders to appear at their next court hearing. 

Baca said the release would save his department $3 million to $4 million. 

In a letter written to Superior Court judges earlier this week, Baca said that along with the prisoner release he would be forced to close the Century Regional Detention Center in Lynwood, which can house up to 2,000 inmates daily. 

“We have no choice,” said Al Scaduto, chief of correctional services for the Sheriff’s Department. “If we don’t have the funds to operate these facilities, we have no options.” 

Supervising Criminal Judge Dan Oki wrote to fellow judges that the court was trying to determine whether Baca has the authority to release inmates once bail has been set. 

Scaduto said state law gives the Sheriff’s Department the right to release inmates awaiting trial for misdemeanors. 

Some county officials were outraged that Baca would consider releasing accused criminals and suggested other solutions. 

District Attorney Steve Cooley responded to Baca’s plan by urging his staff to seek higher bails for defendants who they believe should remain behind bars. 

If the budget cuts go through, sheriff’s officials said they also plan to cut staffing and eliminate specialized task forces. 

Baca’s predecessor, Sherman Block, released about 3,000 inmates in March 1995 because of budget constraints.

Simon: investigate energy crisis

The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

SACRAMENTO – The state’s energy traders and grid operators should be investigated by U.S. attorney’s office to determine if they manipulated California’s energy market, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Simon said Thursday. 

U.S. Rep. Doug Ose, R-Sacramento, appearing with Simon in Sacramento, said Democratic Gov. Gray Davis should give investigators his internal documents as part of any investigation of the state’s energy crisis. 

“Open the governor’s office. Let’s see the governor’s calendar. Who did he meet with and what did they talk about? Let’s start at the top,” Ose said. 

A state Senate committee is investigating the energy crisis, including the state’s power grid operators at the Independent System Operator. The committee recently released a transcript of ISO officials asking state energy traders to buy unnecessary power at above-market rates, which the state later had to sell at a loss. 

The state attorney general is also investigating whether energy suppliers manipulated California’s market. 

Simon said his energy plan would include renegotiating the long-term energy contracts the state entered last year, and encouraging new power plant production — both things Davis has undertaken. 

Davis announced in April that the state had renegotiated some of those contracts, saving $3 billion, and talks are continuing with other energy companies. 

Davis issued executive orders in early 2001 that gave incentives to companies to build power plants. Since then, a dozen plants have began producing power or will be operating by summer. 

But Simon said that’s not enough to ensure the state has adequate reserves of electricity. 

“Contrary to what Gov. Davis has said, there are not a lot of plants in the pipeline in terms of construction,” he said. 

Davis’ campaign spokesman Roger Salazar said Simon has been “as quick to condemn the administration as he is reticent to condemn the energy companies for what they did to California.”

Calif. education board adopts new rules for English-only classes

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

Prop 227 supporters get mandate for abolition of most bilingual education 


SACRAMENTO – The State Board of Education approved a new set of rules mandated by Proposition 227, a voter-approved initiative that requires most English-learning students to be taught in English. 

Thursday’s vote marked a victory for proponents of Proposition 227 who threatened to sue the board, saying an initial set of proposed regulations would have undermined the measure. 

Proposition 227, approved by California voters in 1998, abolished most bilingual education programs and replaced them with English-only courses for students who speak little or no English. Although the measure was approved by 61 percent of the voters, only 37 percent of Hispanic voters supported it. 

Roughly 25 percent of California’s 6 million public school students do not speak English fluently. 

At the heart of the argument over the board’s regulations was the parent’s right to apply for a waiver that would allow his or her child to be transferred to bilingual education classes that teach students in both English and their native languages. 

“Since the passage of Prop. 227, obtaining the waiver has been extremely difficult for many parents,” said Francisco Estrada, spokesman for the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Education Fund. “Not all parents are informed of their right to request a waiver.” 

Parents who want a waiver must apply for one every school year. But schools are not required to offer the alternative courses unless there are 20 or more students in one grade level who receive a waiver. 

Bilingual advocates were pushing to allow teachers and school administrators to apply for the waiver on behalf of the parent. 

“At one point the regulations said...educational staff could initiate a waiver request or recommend it to a parent or guardian,” said Phil Garcia, spokesman for the board. 

But Ron Unz, author of the initiative, argued that the practice would violate the law and threatened to sue the board. 

“That was completely illegal and contrary to the clear language of the initiative,” said Unz. 

The board decided to delete the section of the rules that would have allowed teachers to initiate the application process. 

“The regulations make clear that educational staff and teachers may still recommend the waiver,” said Garcia. 

Board members also dropped a provision that would have required students to go through a 30-day English assessment period only once instead of every year before transferring to bilingual programs. 

That’s the current practice but bilingual advocates wanted the board to include it in the rules to clearly state that students should only have to go through the assessment once. 

Proponents of Proposition 227 said the students should be required to go through the assessment every school year. 

Unz again threatened to sue and the board omitted any reference to the assessment period. 

Estrada said the watered-down regulations do little to protect students or a parent’s right to obtain a waiver. 

Estrada also said that the board’s decision to avoid addressing the assessment period will be a source of contention later. 

Unz, a wealthy head of a financial services software company, is pushing for similar measures in other states. Massachusetts and Colorado voters will face English-only education initiatives in November, while Arizona passed a measure in 2000.

State HMO regulators lose round in dispute with Kaiser

By Jennifer Coleman, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

SACRAMENTO – An administrative law judge sided with Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Thursday in a dispute with the state Department of Managed Health Care that tests the authority of the 3-year-old department. 

The state rejected the ruling, said Director Daniel Zingale, and will appoint an independent hearing officer within the department to determine if it can order an HMO to provide better patient care. 

The state’s complaint against Kaiser stems from the 1996 death of Margaret Utterback, who died from a ruptured aortic aneurysm. The DMHC, which regulates HMOs in California, fined Kaiser $1.1 million for failing to provide Utterback with access to care and continuity of care. 

The administrative law judge reduced the fine to $25,000 and stated that the Legislature’s purpose in enacting HMO oversight was “fiscal regulation of health plans” and not patient care. 

The DMHC “overstepped its authority” by fining the health plan for the quality of medical care, said Dick Pettingill, the president of the California division of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals. Physicians’ are overseen by the state Medical Board, which determined that Utterback’s care was appropriate. 

“We don’t disagree,” said Zingale. “Physician conduct isn’t within our purview. The problem was (Utterback) couldn’t get to a physician. By all accounts, once she saw her doctor, he did a good job.” 

Since the state rejected the ruling, the $1.1 million fine still stands, Zingale said. 

If Kaiser isn’t satisfied with the DMHC hearing, the company can next take the issue to court. 

Zingale said the administrative law judge was incorrect in his argument that the law wasn’t intended to guarantee patients’ access to health care, but was about financial solvency of the HMOs. 

“The original law certainly had intent language about both financial solvency and health care,” he said. “The judge overlooks the fact that that’s why the Legislature created us. That mystifies me.” 

Consumer advocate Jamie Court said the department was right to set aside the judge’s decision because Kaiser had a “systemic problem” that didn’t give enrollees adequate access to care.

State assembly passes bill to help build schools faster

By Stefanie Frith, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

SACRAMENTO – School districts will be able to build schools faster under a bill that passed the state Assembly on Thursday, raising alarm among smaller districts that larger districts will get more school construction money. 

Written by Assemblywoman Jackie Goldberg, D-Los Angeles, AB2424 would allow school districts to form school construction authorities to build schools faster and in turn get even more money. It passed the Assembly 50-23. 

Goldberg said her plan would let school boards focus on making policy instead of worrying about building schools with their share of the $13 billion that could come if voters pass a proposed bond issue in November. 

But small school districts fear they don’t have the resources to create the school construction authorities. The districts are feeling the heat because state school officials estimate that California needs 12,775 additional classrooms and 331 new schools in the next five years. 

The bill would require a local school construction authority to be governed by those appointed by the school district and city council. There also would be a member from the State Allocation Board and Office of the Architect. Small school districts would be able to team up with other districts to form the construction authority.

City stalls hate crime policy

By Kurtis Alexander Daily Planet Staff
Thursday May 30, 2002


Amid grand expectations of Berkeley residents and the hungry eye of local television crews, City Council froze in the spotlight Tuesday and made no move on much-anticipated hate crime legislation at their weekly meeting. 

The measures up for consideration ranged from $5000 rewards for hate crime information to the establishment of a special police unit focusing exclusively on the investigation of crimes motivated by racial and religious zeal. 

Unable to win a majority vote among themselves on any of the measures, City Council referred the items to the city manager, asking him and his staff to study them, make a recommendation, and bring them back to council at an unspecified date. 

“If you have a hate crime in a community it takes a lot more than one big meeting to solve the problem,” said Mayor Shirley Dean after Tuesday’s meeting. 

Still, there was disappointment that city leaders didn’t act on what many are calling a “rash” of local hate crimes. One independent survey counted 18 hate crimes in Berkeley during the last four months. 

“There have been resolutions on the table for a long time. I don’t see why council couldn’t have adopted at least some of them,” said Osama Qasem, president of the Bay Area chapter’s American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. 

“The delay is showing that the city is not making this a top priority and sends a bad sign to other organizations working on the hate crime issue,” he said. 

Siding with Qasem were councilmembers Kriss Worthington, Linda Maio, and Dona Spring. The three voted in favor of all hate crime measures that came up Tuesday, while Mayor Shirley Dean and councilmembers Betty Olds, Polly Armstrong, Miriam Hawley and Maudelle Shirek demanded more information before they were willing to pledge their support. 

“It takes time to work on these things,” said Dean. 

But other councilmembers disagreed. 

“We could have done something last [Tuesday] night,” claimed Worthington. “For seven weeks the city has dawdled and offered no public official response [to recent hate crimes].” 

Among the list of recent crimes includes a March 28 incident in which a brick was thrown through a glass door of the Berkeley Hillel on Bancroft Way. Also in March, phony anthrax letters were received by members of the Hispanic community and in April, bomb threats were called in to each of the city’s Jewish temples. 

One measure that Worthington proposed on Tuesday called for financial rewards for people who furnished information that led to the arrest of hate crime perpetuators. 

“It’s unimaginable that our City Council would not vote for a measly $5000 reward,” Worthington said after the measure was denied by the reoccuring 3-5 vote. 

The other three measures, which met similar fates, proposed the creation of a hate free zone in Berkeley, sensitivity training for police and the establishment of a police hate crimes unit. 

The proposal for additional police training, sponsored by Mayor Dean, drew unexpected criticism. 

Concern was raised Tuesday that the organization specified to conduct the police training was not appropriate. The group recommended is the Anti Defamation League which touts itself as a Jewish civil rights group. 

“The ADL has a bad track record on civil rights,” said Berkeley resident Erica Etelson, a member of the National Lawyers Guild. 

Etlelson alleged that the organization has been involved in espionage which landed the group in a recent federal lawsuit. 

ADL officials, though, downplayed the residents’ concerns, noting that they have a 90-year track record of working with law enforcement agencies to fight hate crimes. The organization has trained Federal Bureau of Investigation agents as well as police officers in Oakland and San Francisco. 

“In our line of work, there’s always going to be people who don’t agree with what we do,” said Jonathan Bernstein, regional director of the Central Pacific region of the ADL. 

But several Berkeley residents contend that Berkeley’s police training should not be managed by one group, and suggested that other ethnic and religious groups be included in the training process. 

The city manager’s office is expected to weigh in on this and other issues and report back to council within the next few months. 


The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

On May 30, 1431, Joan of Arc, condemned as a heretic, was burned at the stake in Rouen, France. 

On this date: 

In 1539, Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto landed in Florida. 

In 1854, the territories of Nebraska and Kansas were established. 

In 1883, 12 people were trampled to death when a rumor that the recently opened Brooklyn Bridge was in imminent danger of collapsing triggered a stampede. 

In 1911, Indianapolis saw its first long-distance auto race; Ray Harroun was the winner. 

In 1922, the Lincoln Memorial was dedicated in Washington D.C., by Chief Justice William Howard Taft. 

In 1943, American forces secured the Aleutian island of Attu from the Japanese during World War II. 

In 1958, unidentified soldiers killed in World War II and the Korean conflict were buried at Arlington National Cemetery. 

In 1971, the American space probe Mariner Nine blasted off from Cape Kennedy, Fla., on a journey to Mars. 

In 1982, Spain became NATO’s 16th member. 

In 1996, Britain’s Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson were granted an uncontested decree ending their ten-year marriage. 

Ten years ago:  

President Bush ordered the seizure of Yugoslav government assets in the United States after the United Nations imposed sanctions in an effort to force Yugoslavia to observe a cease-fire in Bosnia-Herzegovina. 

Five years ago: Child molester Jesse K. Timmendequas was convicted in Trenton, N.J., of raping and strangling a 7-year-old neighbor, Megan Kanka, whose 1994 murder inspired “Megan’s Law,” requiring that communities be notified when sex offenders move in. (Timmendequas was later sentenced to death.) 

One year ago:  

Standing among trees in Sequoia National Park in California, President Bush pledged to protect “these works of God” and other natural treasures from mankind. Former French Foreign Minister Roland Dumas was convicted of corruption and sentenced to six months in prison. Moses Malone and college coaches Mike Krzyzewski and John Chaney entered the Basketball Hall of Fame. 

Today’s Birthdays:  

Country musician Johnny Gimble is 76. Actor Clint Walker is 75. Actress Ruta Lee is 66. Actor Michael J. Pollard is 63. Actor Stephen Tobolowsky is 51. Actor Colm Meaney is 49. Actor Ted McGinley is 44. Actor Ralph Carter is 41. Country singer Wynonna is 38. Rock musician Tom Morello (Rage Against The Machine) is 38. Rock musician Patrick Dahlheimer (Live) is 31. Actor Trey Parker (“Newsies”) is 30. Rapper Cee-Lo (Goodie Mob) is 28. Actor Blake Bashoff is 21. 

Pedestrian safety needs to be addressed

Wendy Alfsen
Thursday May 30, 2002

To the Editor: 

Thank you for your attention to pedestrian safety issues (May 21 & May 23).  

Lisa Pascopella is right (in her letter to editor) the May 7 pedestrian fatality on Addison Street is not the only pedestrian fatality in Berkeley in the last decade.  

It appears to be the only pedestrian fatality on a street designated as a local residential street. Fatalities generally occur on arteries (also known as major streets) except here in our neighborhood. 

Over a four year period, 15 motor vehicle (MV) related fatalities have occurred in Berkeley: nearly half of the fatalities were pedestrian and almost all of the rest were from MVs hitting an object. 47% (7) fatalities were pedestrians in MV collisions, 47% (7) were solo motor vehicle collisions and 6% (1) was from a collision with another MV. 

Berkeley's rate of pedestrian fatalities as a part of all transportation fatalities is more than twice the state rate and nearly twice the Alameda County rate. Berkeley's streets are much too dangerous.  

Improved safety is long overdue.  

Wendy Alfsen,  

Coordinator, Walk&Roll Berkeley 


Arts & Entertainment Calendar

Thursday May 30, 2002


Friday, May 31


Albany High School Theater Ensemble 

A weekend of snacks, desserts and entertainment for the whole family 

"15 - minute Hamlet" 

Friday, 6:30 p.m. (repeated Saturday at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m.)  

"The Real Inspector Hound," followed by "After Margritte" 

Friday, 8 p.m. (repeated Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 6:30 p.m.) 

A.H.S. Multipurpose Room 

603 Key Route Blvd., Albany 

$10 each or $15 for both events 

559-6550, #4125 

theaterensemble@hotmail.com for reservations 


"Boxing With Ghosts: Tales of Death and Resurrection" 

Transforms Trauma Into Art 

Berkeley Art Center 

1275 Walnut Street 

tickets/info 845-3332, directions 644-6893 

$8-$15 sliding scale 


"Playing Our Roots" 

A Cross-Generational play based on personal interviews with senior citizens, presented by the Teen Program of the Berkeley Richmond JCC. 

Friday, May 31; Saturday, June 1; Saturday, June 8; and Sunday, 9. All show times are 7:30 p.m. except Sunday, June 9 at 3 p.m. 

Berkeley Richmond JCC Auditorium 

1414 Walnut Street 

$5 per person, (no one turned away) 




"What Cats know" by Lisa Dilman 

Directed by Rebecca J. Ennals. Four thirty-somethings play a game of gotcha with unexpected consequences.  

Saturday, May 4th-June 9th 

Thursdays- Saturdays 8 p.m. $20, 

Sundays 7 p.m.- Pay what you can 

Transparent Theater 

1901 Ashby Avenue 




“Time Out for Ginger”  

May 10 through Jun. 1: The Actor’s Studio presents the famous comedy that sketches the tumult in a family that includes three teenage daughters, one of whom insists on trying out for her high school football team. $12. Check theater from dates and times. The Actor’s Studio’s Little Theatre, 3521 Maybelle Ave., Oakland 


Live Music 

Friday, May 31 

Berkeley High School Jazz Ensemble and Lab Band Final Concert 

7 p.m. 

Little Theatre 

BerkeleyJazz@aol.com for tickets 

Direct questions to Joan Edelstein and Roz Hardy at BerkeleyPTSA@HighSchoolEmail.com 


Saturday, June 1


Music at Jupiter 

Featuring Avrahams Soul Explosion 

8 p.m. 






Sunday, June 2


Berkeley Early Music Festival Fringe Concert 

Baroque Etcetera presents J.S. Bach Cantata 78 Jesu, der du meine Seele 

6 p.m. 

First Congregational Church 

Durant & Dana 

Wheelchair accessible 





Saturday, June 1 

West Coast Live, Your Full-Service Radio Show 

Featuring Radio Pioneers and Wilderness Pioneers 

10 a.m. - Noon 

91.7 KALW San Francisco, 91.1 KRCB Sonoma 





Friday, May 31


Cuba Verde: A Cuba Report 

Panel Discussion, Video Screening and Dance 

7 p.m. 


1317 San Pablo Avenue (at Gilman) 

Wheelchair accessible, all ages welcome 



Tuesday, June 4


The Third Annual Berkeley High School Film Festival 

The Festival will feature shorts produced by video students  

Doors open at 6 p.m., Program at 6:30 p.m. 

Shwimley Little Theatre (Allston Way b/w MLK and Milvia)

Calendar of Events & Activities

Thursday May 30, 2002

Thursday, May 30


Human Rights At Home and Abroad: A Strategy For Peace 

An educational forum to probe the relationship of the U.S. and the U.N. 

7 to 9 p.m. 

Fellowship Hall of Humanity 

390 27th Street (between Broadway & Telegraph) 




Bob Dylan Song Night 

An evening of Dylan Songs revisited 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$12.50 advance, $13.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Friday, May 31



5 to 8 p.m. 

Alumni House, UC Berkeley Campus 

Faubulous Wine, Food, Fun Music and a Raffle 

All to benefit Cal Scholarship Fund 

$30 at the door, $25 for CAA & BOP Members 



White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Paramount Movie Classics-  

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, 1958 

Doors at 7, Mighty Wurlitzer at 7:30, Newsreel, Cartoon, Previews, and Prize give-away game Dec-O-Win and feature Film 

2025 Broadway 




Blue Riders of the Purple Sage 

Classic cowboy harmonies 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Saturday, June 1


Folk Festival Meeting 

All musicians, artists and others interested in volunteering are invited to a general meeting 

3 p.m. 

City Hall Building, 6th Floor 

2180 Milvia Street 

Wheelchair accessible 

649-1423, halih@yahoo.com 


Growing Food in the City 

An afternoon talk with Daniel Miller 

Discussion about releasing the bounty of your backyard, organically and sustainably 

1 to 4 p.m. 

Ecology Center 

2530 San Pablo at Dwight 

548-2220 x233 


50th anniversary of the Little Train at Tilden Regional Park 

Grizzly Peak Boulevard and Lomas Cantadas in Berkeley 

For more information, call 544-2200 


Sand Castle and Sand Sculpture Contest 

9 a.m. for participants registration 

9- 12 p.m. (Judging starts at noon) 

Crown Beach, Otis and Shore Line Drives 


For more information, call 521-6887 or 748-4565 



The Bluegrass Intentions 

Innovative traditionalists 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 




Sunday, June 2


West Berkeley Open Air Craft Market 

Enjoy locally made crafts, food and beverages along with street performances by the Technomania Circus 

11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

4th and University 



Albany Food Fest and Music 

Enjoy a peaceful afternoon sampling food, listen to four live bands and a free eclectic art show 

Noon to 5 p.m. 

Memorial Park 

1325 Portland Avenue, Albany 

$20 in advance, $25 festival day 



Healing/Tibetan Yoga 

"Stimulating Healing and Renewal through Tibetan Yoga" 

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 




Ice Cream Social 

An annual school PTA fundraiser 

Includes a student talent show, auction, cake walk and field games 

Rosa Parks Elementary School 

Noon to 4 p.m. 



Diablo Symphony Orchestra 

Verdi Spectacular! 

Soloists: Lyric soprano Karen Anderson, soprano Aimee Puentes and tenor Min-sheng Yang. Conducted by Barbara Day Turner 


2 p.m. 

Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts 

1601 Civic Center at Locust Dr. 

Walnut Creek 

925-7469, website: www.dlrca.org 

Tickets $8, $15 and $18 


Casey Neill 

Celtic American folk roots 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Native Californian Cultures - Family Day 

Sunday, June 2, 1:30 PM- 3:30 PM  

Hearst Museum Courtyard 

Storytelling, children's games and basketry 

with Julia and Lucy Parker. Julia Parker, a cultural  

interpreter, supervises the Indian Cultural Program  

in Yosemite. Lucy Parker is a traditional artist who 

crafts jewelry and baskets as well as games. 

The Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology 

Kroeber Hall at the corner of Bancroft Way and College 

The phone number is (510) 643-7648. 

Admission is $2 for adults, $1 for seniors, and $.50 for  

16 and under- Free to the public on Thursdays.

Clayton Valley ends ’Jackets’ NCS run

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Thursday May 30, 2002

A boatload of errors and a hot Clayton Valley High pitching staff ended the Berkeley Yellowjackets’ season on Wednesday in Concord, as the Eagles scored seven runs in the final two innings to blow open a close game for a 10-1 win in a North Coast Section 3A East Bay semifinal game. 

With the win, Clayton Valley (22-5) moved on to play Newark Memorial in the championship game on Saturday at the Oakland Coliseum. 

The ’Jackets (20-7) got a surprise when Clayton Valley head coach Bob Ralston decided to go with Joe Staber as his starting pitcher, rather than ace Adam Elliot as expected. But Staber proved to be effective against the Berkeley bats, going 3 1/3 innings with only three hits and an unearned run. He mixed a deceptively quick fastball with a sharp curve that had the Berkeley hitters flailing in the dirt. 

“Elliot threw 10 innings last week, including 2 2/3 on Saturday,” Ralston said. “Our other pitchers have done a great job for us, and Staber earned the opportunity to start. He got the chance, and he produced for us.” 

But with a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning and a Berkeley run already in on Benny Goldenberg single and a Clayton Valley error, Ralston didn’t hesitate to go to Elliot, who immediately picked Jeremy LeBeau off of first base, then set down seven of the next eight Berkeley hitters, with DeAndre Miller’s walk in the fifth the only blemish. 

While Staber and Elliot were breaking down the Berkeley offense, the Berkeley defense was throwing the game away. Shortstop Jason Moore, usually a slick fielder, had a nightmarish day with five errors that contributed to four Eagle runs. Starting pitcher Sean Souders didn’t help his own cause, throwing away two pickoff attempts. The poor effort in the field looked even worse contrasted with the nearly spotless Clayton Valley defense, which committed just the one error in the fourth inning. 

“It’s not like (Clayton Valley) just jumped out and pummelled the ball,” Berkeley’s Matt Toma said. “We gave them some chances, and they ended up taking advantage.” 

It didn’t help matters that Souders left after five innings due to a high pitch count. The junior lefty only gave up three runs, just one of them earned, but struggled with his control and had runners on the bases in every inning. 

With Souders out and facing a 3-1 deficit, Berkeley head coach Tim Moellering decided to go with sophomore Matt Sylvester. With No. 2 starter Cole Stipovich having thrown a complete game against De La Salle on Saturday and a possible championship game to worry about, Moellering went with the youngster and it cost him. 

The inning started innocently enough, with Moore throwing away a grounder to let nine-hitter Chris Proehl reach base. But Jeff Landry followed with a booming triple off the centerfield wall, then Matt Reed roped a double down the leftfield line. Sylvester walked Elliot before letting Sam Ray single up the middle, and the hurler was lifted without getting an out. Ethan Friedman came on to stop the bleeding, but the damage was done. With Elliot on the mound and a five-run lead, the Eagles’ road to the championship game was all but completed. 

Elliot set down the ’Jackets in order in the bottom of the sixth, then the Eagles used four singles, three Berkeley errors and a walk to score four more runs to put the game out of reach. Ralston was able to save Elliot’s arm for Saturday and send Jimmy Gilbert to the mound in the seventh to finish off the ’Jackets. He did so in quick fashion, getting two groundouts and a strikeout. 

Despite the late fireworks, Moellering said it was an earlier miscue that turned the momentum against his team. Trailing 2-1 in the top of the fifth, Souders walked Elliot to start the inning. After an errant pickoff throw sent the Clayton Valley star to second base, Moellering called for a pickoff play, but it was never attempted. Elliot ended up scoring on a Chris Salmon single, putting the ’Jackets down 3-1. 

“It just got worse from that point on,” Moellering said. “Instead of trying to squeeze across one run to tie the game, we had to start thinking about stringing together some hits to get a big innings. That just didn’t happen.” 

Indeed, Moellering’s team managed just four hits in the game, none in the final three innings. Other than Goldenberg’s run, only one Berkeley player made it as far as third base, as Miller stole two bases after his walk. After suffering just two strikeouts in their first two NCS games, the ’Jackets went down six times against Clayton Valley, which has given up just two runs in the playoffs after winning the Bay Valley Athletic League title. 

“I was just concerned about our pitching holding (Berkeley) down,” Ralston said. “Our defense and pitching really came through for us.” 

While the ’Jackets were in an understandably foul mood after the game, Moellering said the season has to be considered a success for a team that most didn’t expect to make the playoffs, much less make it to the semifinals. 

“I’m happy with the season, and I’m think after the players get a day or two to think about it, they will be too,” Moellering said.

Concerns raised over future of independent study program

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet staff
Thursday May 30, 2002

Teachers and administrators in the Berkeley Unified School District’s Independent Study program are concerned about proposals to alter its administration and reduce its classroom space, but Superintendent Michele Lawrence says the issues are still unsettled.  

“No decisions have been made,” she said. 

The program, which shares space with Berkeley Alternative High School at 2701 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, serves 200 K-12 students. The pupils receive one-on-one instruction at the site but do most of their schoolwork independently. 

Independent Study staff said the district has proposed taking one of the program’s three classrooms to make space for a third academy on the site – a “continuation school” that would provide academic support and vocational education for struggling students. 

But Lawrence said the classroom issue is far from settled. 

“I think they need the space they have,” she said. 

“That’s very encouraging,” replied program director Carl Brush, who assumed the shift to two classrooms was a foregone conclusion.  

Brush, who plans to retire at the end of the year, currently shares administrative duties with Sara McMickle, who serves as a manager 60 percent of the time and an English teacher 40 percent of the time.  

In a meeting two months ago, district staff suggested that McMickle continue as a 60-40 administrator after Brush leaves, with significant oversight from the Berkeley Alternative High School principal. 

“It’s just not realistic,” said McMickle, arguing that Alternative High School principal Alex Palau has his hands full already and will be even busier next year with the addition of the continuation school. 

McMickle said the program needs a day-to-day administrator 100 percent of the time to function properly. 

Independent Study math teacher Pam Drew, who helped found the program in the mid-90s, said a full-time administrator is particularly important to keep track of Independent Study’s extensive paperwork and ensure continued funding. 

Traditional schools receive state funding based on attendance figures. Because students in the Independent Study program only meet with their teachers a few hours a week, instructors must quantify the work that students do on their own in order to develop attendance records.  

The director must get all the paperwork in order to ensure that the program passes muster in state audits. An audit of the 1997-1998 program cost the district almost $200,000 in funding because of poor record-keeping, according to Drew. 

“What’s to prevent the same exact thing from happening?,” she asked, suggesting that the district could pay, in the long-term, for hiring a part-time administrator. 

Lawrence confirmed that the district had floated the 60 percent administrator-40 percent teacher model for next year, but emphasized that no decision has been made. 

“They’re just a little impatient now and that’s understandable,” she said, referring to Independent Study staff.  

Lawrence argued that the program’s administrators, like everyone else in the district, will have to be patient while Berkeley Unified sorts out its fiscal mess and decides how to allocate funds next year.  

Board of Education member John Selawsky said budget problems may prevent the district from meeting Independent Study’s request. 

“I think every program deserves a full-time administrator,” he said. “Unfortunately, we have a $5 million shortfall.” 

Lawrence said part of the problem is that Independent Study “is not paying for itself.” She said the program has spent $50,000 to $118,000 more than it has drawn in state revenues, depending upon how one examines the numbers. 

“I would be happy if those numbers were shared with us, because they haven’t been,” replied Brush. Independent Study’s own analysis suggests that the program has a surplus of over $30,000, dating back to its inception. 

Independent Study proponents planned to appear before the school board Wednesday night, after the Planet’s deadline, to express their concerns.  

News of the Weird

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002


Otter Nonsense 


WINNIPEG, Manitoba — The Manitoba Wildlife Rehabilitation Organization has gotten itself into some otter nonsense. 

Organization officials issued a public plea for someone to accompany what they believed to be an orphaned baby otter to a Toronto-area sanctuary. 

Only one problem — the wee beast turned out not to be an otter but a pine marten. 

Red-faced wildlife officials explained Tuesday that unlike otters, pine martens don’t need to be raised with their own kind to become successful predators, so relocating the animal has become unnecessary. 

Dozens of kindhearted Winnipeggers — including Mayor Glen Murray — had come forward offering to take the tiny animal on a plane as carry-on luggage. 

The three-week-old pine marten, found at Grindstone Provincial Park, was suffering from pneumonia. Several veterinarians and experienced animal rehabilitation workers had nursed it for about a week. Doubts about its otterness arose at a meeting of the wildlife organization on Monday night. 

A board member familiar with baby otters noted that pine martens come from the same family of animals, and their babies look very much like otters, except for the perkier ears, pointier face and a patch of rust-colored fur on their necks. 

“It’s been an eye-opening experience,” said organization spokesman Paul Clarke. 


Going estreme lengths to avoid a bad hair day 

NEW BLOOMFIELD, Pa. — Dave Gaskell is so finicky about how his hair is cut that he commutes 500 miles to his barber. 

About once a month since he started working for US Airways in September, Gaskell boards a plane in Cincinnati, rents a car and gets a haircut from Donald Stoops Jr. in New Bloomfield in central Pennsylvania. 

“Why not?” said Gaskell, 54. “He gives a great haircut. I’m kind of particular about haircuts.” 

Gaskell, who retired from a 30-year teaching career last year, left Cincinnati around 6 a.m. Tuesday. Four hours later, his gray locks were being snipped at Stoops Barber Shop. 

He’s been going to Stoops for decades. Stoops’ father, Donald Sr., cut Gaskell’s hair when Gaskell was a cadet at Carson Long Military Institute in New Bloomfield. 

“I have yet to find another place that cuts hair like I like it,” said Gaskell, who served 17 years in the military and likes his hair cropped just a certain way. 

As a US Airways ramp agent, Gaskell’s plane travel is cheap — he pays just $80 a year for unlimited flights. He said he’s flown to Orlando, Fla., and Seattle just for lunch. 

To Stoops, who has been cutting hair since 1955, Gaskell’s trips aren’t unusual. Customers return from South Carolina and California for haircuts and good conversation — all for $5, he said. 

“You’d be surprised where people come from,” Stoops said. 

Divine Retribution 

NORTHEAST HARBOR, Maine — Maybe it was divine retribution. 

Craig Golden’s pocket Bible was the clue that helped police tie him to the destruction of 80 beehives in a blueberry field. 

Golden, 17, of Ellsworth, was arrested Tuesday for driving his pickup truck through the beehives, causing damage estimated at $5,000. 

Thousands of bees died following the incident earlier this month, apparently from bad weather after the hives were damaged. 

Police found a pocket Bible amid the damaged hives with the name “Craig” written in it. Authorities interviewed Golden, and he admitted the Bible was his. 

The teen-ager apparently kept the Bible in the side door of his truck, state trooper Carlton Small said Tuesday. 

“During the course of driving into the beehives, the Bible evidently fell out of the truck,” Small said. 

Golden, who was on probation for a previous offense, will be charged with felony aggravated criminal mischief. 










Dean’s support for the arts is selective

John Curl
Thursday May 30, 2002

To the Editor: 


Susan Medak, the Managing Director of the Berkeley Rep, accuses me of writing that "Mayor Dean is no friend to artists" (DP May 25-26).  

Her quote, however, comes not from my letter of the previous week but from that letter's title, which was supplied by the editor of the Daily Planet, not me. 

My letter made a different point: Mayor Dean's support of the arts has been highly selective. Medak accuses me of politicizing Berkeley arts by taking sides. In fact, it's Dean who has taken  

sides. She has advocated for the upscale Downtown Arts District (which includes the Rep) while undermining and neglecting the substantial but humbler arts and crafts district in West Berkeley.  

I say this not only as a member of the Planning Commission but as a custom woodworker who has worked out of a West Berkeley shop for over 30 years. I know Medak is grateful for the City's very generous contributions to the Rep and the Downtown Arts District, and rightfully so.  

But if she is serious about depoliticizing the arts, she should also support the struggles of West Berkley artists and artisans, advocate for strict implementation of the protections in the West Berkeley Plan, and recommend that a fair share of the City's arts grants be channeled to West Berkeley. 

As I pointed out in my earlier letter, in Berkeley as elsewhere, the main threat to artists and artisans is office development. Offices drive up studio rents to levels that most artists and artisans cannot afford.  

West Berkeley artists and craftspeople are supposed to be protected from undue office development by the provisions of the city's Zoning Ordinance that are based on the West Berkeley Plan, which was unanimously approved by the City Council in 1993. Dean voted for the Plan, but since then she has worked to undermine it by vigorously advocating for office expansion in West Berkeley.  

At the same time, she has looked the other way when artists and artisans have repeatedly complained about the city's failure to fully implement the zoning laws. 

In April, the City Council considered the Planning Commission's recommendation for a moratorium on office development in West Berkeley's Mixed Use/Light Industrial District, the heart of artistic and artisanal enterprise.  

The purpose of the office moratorium was to allow the Planning Commission to investigate the impacts of office expansion on artists, artisans and other light industrial enterprises. The Council passed the moratorium by a 5-4 vote; Dean was opposed. 

My earlier letter recounted all this and more. But, amazingly, Medak never says a word about the West Berkeley Plan, the threat of office expansion, the mayor's vote on the office moratorium, or her ongoing promotion of office uses in West Berkeley. Instead, Medak writes: "[Dean] has...supported funding for capital projects in West and South Berkeley." Sticking just to West Berkeley, I am curious to know exactly what major capital projects Medak has in mind. The only project I can think is some banners advertising the area's ceramicists. Banners are nice, but when you can't pay the rent, all the banners in the world won't prevent your eviction. 

Or perhaps Medak is thinking of proposed future capital projects. In Dean's recent State of the City speech, she recommended that the city establish a Ceramics and Artisan District. But the fact is that the city already has such a district and the laws to protect it; what it lacks is a mayor who would see to it that those laws are properly enforced. 

Then there's Dean's other recent proposal that the City sponsor an artist co-op warehouse, an idea that was first put forward last year by Linda Maio. Welcome on board. We'd all love to see the plan. However, one co-op building will not be enough, in and of itself. Most artists and artisans will remain tenants, and will continue to need the City's help through existing zoning regulations. Artists and artisans will continue to need a mayor who supports those regulations, not one who works to weaken them. 

Taken together with Dean's advocacy of office proliferation, both of these proposals look like empty election-year sops. 

If Medak is serious about depoliticizing the arts, she should face the unpleasant truths about Dean's record and urge her to stop undermining the artist and artisan protections in the West Berkeley Plan. 


John Curl 

Planning Commissioner 


BHS principal search delayed

By David Scharfenberg Daily Planet Staff
Thursday May 30, 2002

The pool of applicants for the position of principal at Berkeley High School is not strong enough to warrant moving forward with the interview process, according to a selection committee composed of staff and community members. 

The determination will, at the least, delay the installation of a new principal and may lead to the consideration of alternative administrative models, said Superintendent Michele Lawrence. Either way, said Lawrence, the district will handle the fallout. 

“I’m not disheartened,” she said. “It’s just a little setback.” A team of four co-principals have run the high school since October when then-principal Frank Lynch left to take a job as Superintendent of the Del Norte County Unified School District. 

Lawrence said the school could continue with an unorthodox leadership model. She said an alternative look might make more sense in the long-term anyhow since the district is weighing a move, at some point, to a series of small schools at BHS. 

But an alternative model is not the only possibility, Lawrence said. Berkeley Unified might simply pursue new avenues in locating a principal – hiring a consulting firm to drum up applicants or going national with its own search. 

“We could push harder (nationally) knowing the California pool is weak,” she said. 

Lawrence said the national search could entail contact with national trade organizations like the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and the National Association of Secondary School Principals, both based in Virginia. 

“I think we do have to do an aggressive national search and get some candidates and have a choice,” said Board of Education member John Selawsky. 

But Selawsky added that he has been pleased with the work of the co-principals this year and could envision a continuation of the current model. 

Board president Shirley Issel said she was not concerned about BHS faltering if there is a delay in finding a new principal. 

“I really have confidence in Michele’s leadership and the leadership at the high school,” she said. 

The deadline for applications was Friday and the district received 10-12 submissions, Lawrence said. The superintendent would not say if any of the applicants were current district employees. 

Lawrence said that, while the overall pool was too weak “to warrant an extensive interview process,” the district may eventually decide to interview some of the individuals who applied by Friday.  



Pink Man returns to Berkeley in multimedia show

Jennifer Dix Special to the Daily Planet
Thursday May 30, 2002

If you’ve lived in the Bay Area for even a short time, you’ve probably encountered Pink Man. He’s hard to miss, wearing a unitard the color of Pepto-Bismol and careening through the streets on a unicycle. Sometimes he sports a fluttering cape, or flaps his arms like a giant bird. 

Pink Man – clown, superhero, flamingo – had his genesis about seven years ago, although his creator, Michael Maxfield, has inhabited Planet Earth a bit longer (about 40 years). His mission is simple.  

“It’s about joy,” Maxfield said. “I love what I do, I love playing around on the unicycle.” If he can spread a little of that joy to spectators, so much the better. 

It seems to work. Several years ago, Pink Man was named “Favorite Local Character” in a San Francisco Chronicle readers’ poll—no small feat when you consider the multitude of colorful personalities thronging the Bay Area. 

And now he’s appearing on stage. “I Wheel,” an original multimedia performance, is at the Live Oak Theater May 30 and 31. The show playfully chronicles the evolution of the wheel, from cave man discovery to man’s supreme accomplishment—which is of course the unicycle. 

The show, narrated by Bodie MC also features fellow unicyclist and trapeze artist Ashley Foster in a series of pieces combining dance, acrobatics, and music. Sometimes the work celebrates pure form and movement, as in a duet titled “Sacred Geometry.” Pink Man himself makes only a limited appearance in “I Wheel.” 

“At heart I’m a dancer,” said Maxfield. “My main thing is dancing on my unicycle… it’s a real different energy than Pink Man.” 

But Pink Man fans, fear not—the rosy-hued superhero appears in the show’s grand finale. 

And as it turns out, the show’s timing is fortuitous. “Did you know,” Maxfield said in a rush of breathless excitement, “May is Support Your Local National Superhero Month? No, really--you can look it up.” 

The exuberant Maxfield, who talks a mile a minute and seems at times to view the world with almost childlike naivete, sees “amazing connections and coincidences” everywhere since he took up with Pink Man: “There’s a woman in Sacramento who started something she calls Pink Week – and it’s the week of my birthday!” and “the pink flamingo lawn ornament was created in Leominster, Massachusetts, which is my home town.”  

Maxfield has lived life on the fringe for many years, working variously as a club DJ, band singer, and assorted menial jobs. Berkeley has been his home off and on for nearly 20 years, but he’s also lived in Oregon, Hawaii, and southern California.  

Pink Man became a part of his life about seven years ago, when he was living in Oregon and a series of personal problems, including an ugly divorce, had left Maxfield “almost suicidal” in his words. During those dark days, it was riding his unicycle—swhich he had done as a hobby since he was a teenager—that gave him something to live for. 

Why he decided to order a hooded leotard from a dancewear catalog at that time—and to order it in shocking pink—he can’t really explain. But something about the uniform appealed to his inner need for creative expression. When he donned the costume and cycled across the University of Oregon campus, someone shouted, “Pink Man!” and a new era began. 

“It’s like the unicycle saved me,” Maxfield said. He speaks with reverence of the one-wheeled conveyance. “The movement is so unique, so dreamy—it’s kind of like flying.” He extols the ability to make sharp turns, pivots, and to stop on a dime. 

Not that just anybody can do this. “I’m the best in the world at what I do,” Maxfield asserts.  

He likes to use his super-unicycle powers to conquer evil, or at least calm hostility. He delightedly recounts the story of being harassed by a bunch of toughs outside a bar in Eugene, Oregon. When they made fun of his unicycle, he suggested they give it a try. One by one, the tough guys mounted the cycle—and fell off. When they were done, Maxfield climbed on his unicycle and dazzled them with a series of fancy spins and tricks.  

“After that, they all want to shake hands with me,” he said. “Then this one guy puts his cowboy hat on my head. I felt like I’d been invited to join the club. It was so cool.” 

Despite his popularity, Pink Man doesn’t charm everyone. Maxfield has experienced his share of heckling and being pelted with trash. The scariest incident occurred in Berkeley some years ago when someone reached out of their car and yanked Maxfield off his unicycle, dragging him for a distance of about 50 feet before he got loose. 

Maxfield knows he invites harassment with his unusual antics and appearance.  

“I’ve never been as ‘out there’ as I am now,” he said cheerfully. “I’m nutso, and I know it.”  

But he’s also happy, even if fame and fortune have eluded him thus far. Citing what he terms “a mountain of close calls,” he remembers disappointed hopes, big breaks that never materialized. But there’s always tomorrow. He said he’s writing his autobiography, to be published by Berkeley-based Ten Speed Press. Among his ambitions: to make a movie, and to perform on his unicycle in cities around the globe. 

For now, he hopes “I Wheel” will be a success. “I’ve been living below the poverty line for years,” he said. “I won’t be upset if it makes a little money.”

Drugs dominate police review commission forum

By Matthew Artz Special to the Daily Planet
Thursday May 30, 2002


Drug violence, not police brutality, is what plagues West Berkeley, said area residents at a Police Review Commission Community Forum at the Rosa Parks Elementary School Wednesday night. 

The community meeting, chaired by the PRC, and attended by Police Chief Dash Butler was organized to address concerns about increasing police brutality, especially among the city’s narcotics taskforce. 

However, most of approximately 40 residents in attendance rose to defend the police department, and decry the recent escalation of drug dealing around 10th and Addison Streets. 

“I have a problem,” exclaimed Albert Benjamin, who has lived at the intersection for 25 years. “The last nine months these people are in my living room.”  

Benjamin’s depiction of a neighborhood under siege was supported by many of his neighbors. 

Addressing a member of the audience who disagreed with him, Tim McClosky said, “They’re not standing in your garden, they’re not ruining your stuff.” 

Barbara Gregory said she has lived in that area since 1989, and that within the past year the drug dealing has gotten worse. “It has become a nightmare living there,” she said. 

The neighbors did not blame the Police Department for the upsurge in drug-related activity, but many wished that officers had stronger means to remove the drug dealers. 

“The police seem too wishy,” Fred Kosentino said. He has lived at 10th and Allston for 22 years and said that he had never witnessed any police brutality. 

Stephanie Ross complained that the city wasn’t giving the police the tools to “get the bad guys.” She said that recently drug dealers from outside her neighborhood set up a barbecue in front of a neighbor’s house to intimidate them. According to Ross the police came, but because nobody’s driveway was blocked, the police were powerless to remove the unwanted visitors. 

The neighbors have an influential voice in their corner. Councilmember Margaret Breland also lives around 10th and Allston, and she was not surprised to see the drug issue dominate the forum. 

“There are people doing donuts at 8 a.m. on a weekday, and that’s when children are going to school,” she said. “Everybody has to watch out for these bugers because they’re smart. They know what time the police are coming and what time they leave.” Breland has scheduled a community meeting for tonight at the Rosa Park Elementary School issue to brainstorm solutions to the drug issue. 

In defending the police several speakers noted that the root causes of the drug problem in West Berkeley are rooted in broader social issues. 

A resident who has lived at 7th street for 45 years insisted that the problems were economic. “We haven’t even come out with a plan to send them to school, she said. 

Breland agreed. “We can’t keep putting kids in jail. They don’t care if they live or die. They’re so discouraged, they’re giving up on life,” she said. 

Although the drug issue dominated the forum, some speakers did express concern about what they believed was excessive police violence. 

Siobhan Wilson, a resident of the UA Homes, a single room occupancy hotel at 1040 University shared her experience with police officers who said they had gotten a tip that she was dealing drugs. “They destroyed my room, she said. “ They even slashed open my suitcases. I had never seen anything like it,” said Wilson who currently has a complaint filed against the police.  

According to Carla James of Copwatch, a community organization that monitors police behavior, there has been an upsurge of complaints 

filed against police action in West Berkeley. “Our phone has been ringing off the hook,” said James, who commented that she knew of several residents who had filed complaints against the police, but were too intimidated to attend the forum.  

Police Chief Butler defended the actions of his department.  

“The SEU (Special Enforcement Unit) is the difference between this and carnage in the streets. We have to take an aggressive posture,” Butler said.  

According to Butler the police were beginning to win the battle at 10th and Allston. “Over the last 24 hours my guys in the SEU have been able to do a bunch of things now that they couldn’t do a couple of years ago,” he said. 

Fundraiser teases Brainwash Film Fest

Andy Sywak Special to the Daily Planet
Thursday May 30, 2002

In a place with more than its share of film buffs, aspiring amateurs and famous directors, the Bay Area seems to never tire of film festivals. 

With such titles, as “Sex Life of a Chair” and “Anarchy Monkey” and calling itself “weird, unique and delightful,” the upcoming Brainwash Film Festival aims to carve out its own unique corner of the bizarre. 

The festival has received more than 100 submissions from all over the world with the majority coming from Los Angeles, the Bay Area and New York. 

Dave Krzysik, one of the original founders of Brainwash, said the festival is distinguished from other film festivals because of “the emphasis on shorts and the unique styles of filmmaking that we pick.” 

Krzysik created and produced the film festival, along with co-organizer Vikky Vaden, a founder of one of San Francisco’s underground movie houses, the Werepad. Calling Brainwash “the true underground independent,” Krzysik and his co-organizers have filtered through nearly 400 movies in preparation for the event. 

A fundraiser for the eighth annual Brainwash Drive-In/Bike-In will be held on Thursday, May 30th at the Parkway Theater in Oakland. The event will be emceed by San Francisco Mime Troupe member Ed Holmes and an actress from one of the film shorts, Lani Fantz. 

Showcasing a stream of shorts, many of them under five minutes in length, the fundraiser serves as a teaser for the festival that will take place July 5th and 6th at the parking lot for the Alliance for West Oakland Development.  

Expected to last an hour and a half, Thursday’s fundraiser will also feature the shorts “Fool’s Errand” and “Thought Bubble” by local filmmakers.  

Krzysik plans to shoot a television show at the fundraiser as a hopeful pilot for a large television network.  

“We hope to make it into an ongoing TV series,” he said regarding the format in which a moderator presides over a series of shorts. Krzysik cites an Alfred Hitchcock television series and “The Twilight Zone” as examples of shows that were based on shorts. 

One of Krzysik’s own shorts, “Sheep Action,” will screen next Thursday at the Parkway. His film features clips of “Buy Everything Day” – a mock counter-protest of the busies shopping dayof the year, the day after Thanksgiving. Fantz, who donned the sheep’s outfit for the film, has become a sort of mascot for the event. 

The fundraiser costs $8 and starts at 9:15 p.m. The Parkway Theater is located in Oakland at 1834 Park Boulevard at 18th Street.

Feds join hands with state officials to purchase salt ponds

By Colleen Valles The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

FREMONT — State and federal officials have joined philanthropic groups in pledging $100 million to buy 16,500 acres of salt ponds ringing San Francisco Bay, launching the largest wetlands restoration project on the West Coast. 

After negotiations led by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., Cargill Salt agreed to sell the land at 40 percent of its appraised value. The Minneapolis-based agribusiness giant also is responsible for cleanup of the land, which includes 1,400 acres along the Napa River. 

“Today we’re taking the first steps to reverse the course of history. Together we will restore an extraordinary but endangered natural resource,” Gov. Gray Davis said in formally announcing the deal Wednesday. “For the last century, we did not do a very good job of protective this resource.” 

The plan pools money from state and federal governments, as well as four private foundations, to turn the salt flats into habitat for both endemic species and migratory birds flying between Alaska and the tropics. 

Feinstein said Cargill came down in price $200 million from its original demand, in part by removing about 400 acres of salt ponds in Redwood City from the deal. 

“At $300 million, we didn’t have a deal,” Feinstein said. 

Cargill Chief Executive Officer Warren Staley said the company had been considering restoration for some time, and decided to sell now because the market was soft. 

“We looked at the marketplace, which wasn’t as good as it was previously,” he said, adding that the company has not yet decided what to do with those 400 acres in Redwood City. 

The bay used to have 190,000 acres of tidal marsh, but the bulk of that land has been diked, drained, filled or paved. Now, only about 20 percent of the marsh survives. 

The Cargill land has been in salt production since the 1850s, which will mean intensive cleanup of a highly concentrated brine that is toxic in its solid form. Purifying the land could take decades and the cost has been estimated between $200 million and $1 billion. 

“Some of these ponds should be relatively easy to restore,” said David Lewis, executive director of Save San Francisco Bay Association. “Other ponds will be more difficult.” 

The federal government will chip in $8 million. The state will cover the rest with four private-sector partners: the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund. 

The agencies and charities have pledged $35 million for planning and management beyond the $100 million purchase price. 

A Cargill spokeswoman said the company will not lay off any of its 200 employees at its Newark plant and plans to keep producing 650 tons of salt a year on the 11,000 acres it will retain. 

“The acquisition is based on land we no longer need for salt production,” said spokeswoman Lori Johnson. 

Most of the land is expected to become part of the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The rest will be part of a state-run wildlife preserve. 

Diluting the ponds and restoring them to healthy marshes will rank as the largest wetlands restoration project attempted on the West Coast, rivaled only by projects to restore the Florida Everglades and Chesapeake Bay. “The Everglades in Florida is the largest wetland restoration in the country, and this is the largest shoreline restoration that increases tidal wetlands,” said California Resources Secretary Mary Nichols. 

Davis professors conduct two-day walkout

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

DAVIS — A two-day walkout by lecturers shut down some classes Wednesday at the University of California’s Davis campus. 

Organizers said 100 classes were affected, though university officials pegged the total at not more than a dozen. 

About 80 teachers and students manned picket lines to protest policies they say will reduce writing, foreign language and economic programs, cut lecturers’ positions and undermine education quality. 

Campus officials say the programs will be maintained and even increased. They say lecturers will be replaced by tenured professors. 

The slow pace of contract negotiations for all UC lecturers is adding to the dispute. The lecturers have been without a contract for two years. Lecturers said they will continue their walkout Thursday. 

Assembly approves bill to ban Ward Valley from nuclear waste site list

By Jennifer Coleman The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

SACRAMENTO — The Assembly approved a bill Wednesday night that could lead to a new low-level nuclear waste site in California. 

Bill author Fred Keeley, D-Boulder Creek, said California needed to fulfill an obligation the state made when it signed a compact with Arizona, North Dakota and South Dakota to find a site for low-level nuclear waste. That agreement was ratified by the Legislature in 1987. 

The state selected Ward Valley in the Mojave Desert in 1988, but that decision has been plagued by lawsuits and no facility has been built. Keeley’s bill would remove Ward Valley from consideration — at least temporarily. 

The disposal site would store low-level radioactive waste from hospitals and nuclear laboratories. Opponents fear contaminated water might leak into surrounding soils. The Colorado River, the water supply for millions of people in the Southwest, is about 20 miles east of Ward Valley. 

California can continue disposing its nuclear waste at a South Carolina site until 2008, but it is unclear how the state will handle longer-term needs. 

Meanwhile, Keeley said, most low-level radioactive waste is stored where it is produced — at hospitals and laboratories “literally in your backyard.” 

His bill would remove Ward Valley from consideration for the dump, and would require the state to establish standards for a low-level nuclear waste site. 

Once those are written down, he said, Ward Valley could be reconsidered if it met the new criteria. That would take another act of the Legislature and approval of the governor. Assemblyman Phil Wyman, R-Tehachapi, said he supported the Ward Valley plan, and opposed Keeley’s legislation. Wyman, whose district formerly included the site, said many residents there saw the site as a patriotic duty and were willing to “take the risk for our nation.” 


Video games rely on appeal of movies, sequels

By Anthony Breznican The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

LOS ANGELES – Sequels and movie adaptations — that’s what the coming year promises from the video game industry. 

With billions of dollars on the line, many game makers are relying on brand-name recognition to weather the fierce four-way competition between personal computer systems, Microsoft’s Xbox, Nintendo’s GameCube and Sony’s PlayStation 2. 

Sequels to the innovative games “The Legend of Zelda,” “Tomb Raider” and “Black & White” are in the works, along with a host of new games based on popular films like “Harry Potter,” “Tron” and “Indiana Jones.” 

Virtually every exhibit at last week’s Electronic Entertainment Expo featured spin-offs and movie adaptations or games with “II” or “III” at the end of their titles. 

How important are such franchises to a console’s success? 

“It’s everything,” said Perrin Kaplan, vice president for corporate affairs at Nintendo of America. “Nintendo is built on a couple cornerstones, and character franchise is a really huge one and not to be underestimated. We don’t take it lightly.” 

The second-place console GameCube is hoping to fuel more sales with the release of the spin-off “Super Mario Sunshine,” a cartoon-style version of “The Legend of Zelda,” and the futuristic “Star Fox Adventures,” a hand-to-paw fighter derived from the original “Star Fox” flying game. 

Nintendo is also hoping to lure more adult gamers with the gory prequel “Resident Evil 0” and the alien shoot-’em-up “Metroid Prime,” an update on the 1980s hit sci-fi game. 

Original GameCube offerings this year will include the cutesy creature puzzler “Animal Crossing” and the Internet multiplayer “Phantasy Star Online I and II.” 

PS2, the leading console in sales, will feature “Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness,” the sixth title in that series; a follow-up to the anti-social adventure “Grand Theft Auto III” subtitled “Vice City;” the 3-D role-playing game “Dark Cloud 2” and a console version of the PC hit “The Sims.” 

Among its original games are the robot chase “Ratchet & Clank” and “The Getaway,” a gritty crime saga set in the London underworld. 

With nearly 30 million units sold worldwide, PS2 also plans to attract more users with a handful of Disney-based games. 

Those include “Kingdom Hearts,” a “Final Fantasy”-style role-play game set in the worlds of Mickey Mouse, Peter Pan and the Little Mermaid; and “Disney’s Stitch,” a prequel to the upcoming animated film “Lilo & Stitch.” 

The high profile of Disney-based characters has made the entertainment company a top partner for video game developers. 

“Everybody is trying to create a trend, something familiar, that will expand the market,” said Jan Smith, president of Disney Interactive. “We combine stories that people know and characters they know, and that’s what everybody is looking for.” 

After debuting only last year, Xbox still lacks the character recognition of Nintendo or the “Tomb Raider” and “Grand Theft Auto” franchise games of PS2. 

However, Microsoft has franchise aspirations for many of its original titles, particularly “Blinx: The Time Sweeper,” said Robbie Bach, Microsoft’s chief Xbox officer. 

That game features an anthropomorphized cat that cleans up disturbances in time, which enables him to slow down enemies, freeze moments and travel backward in the continuum to stage multiple attacks on villains 

But Xbox will feature a few sequels, such as the racing game “Midtown Madness 3” and “Frogger Classic,” an updated version of the 1980s dodging game. 

Xbox is also offering TV and movie adaptations such as the supernatural fighter “Buffy the Vampire Slayer;” the beat-’em-up adventure “Bruce Lee: Quest of the Dragon;” and “The Thing,” based on director John Carpenter’s 1982 horror remake. 

Many third-party game publishers are distributing popular sequels and movie titles across platforms. 

Eidos is making “Hitman 2: Silent Assassin” for release on PS2, Xbox and PC. Electronic Arts is releasing “James Bond 007: NightFire” on all consoles and PC, while its sequel game “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” is set to debut on PS2, Xbox and PC. 

Other movie games in the works include Rage-Ubi Soft’s “Rocky” for all consoles and PC, and Vivendi Universal’s “The Scorpion King: The Rise of an Akkadian” for GameCube and PlayStation 2. 

LucasArts, the gaming division of Lucasfilm, is also spinning off several games from movie characters, including “Indiana Jones and the Emperor’s Tomb” for Xbox, PS2 and PC. “Bounty Hunter” and “The Clone Wars,” both inspired by the film “Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones,” are being released on PS2 and GameCube. 

“You get to see a whole new side of the Jedi, which is the Jedi at war,” said Jim Tso, a LucasArts game designer. 

Meanwhile, in the real world, the console war continues ...

Nortel to cut 3,500 jobs, may sell optical-parts unit

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

NEW YORK – Telephone-equipment maker Nortel Networks Corp. said Wednesday it will cut another 3,500 jobs, more than expected, and may sell its optical-components business as it revamps its operations to save money. 

Nortel now expects its work force to bottom out at 42,000. Last month, Nortel put the figure at 44,000. The Brampton, Ontario, company has cut about 50,000 jobs since the beginning of last year, and employed 47,000 people at the end of the first quarter. 

Nortel said it plans to streamline the optical long-haul business because it doesn’t expect a “meaningful” recovery in that market before late 2003 or early 2004. The plan includes the possible sale or resizing of Nortel’s optical-components business. 

“We are aligning our optical business model to where we see the industry going to ensure we are well-positioned when spending resumes,” president and chief executive Frank Dunn said. 

“Optical backbone networks are the foundation of multimedia broadband networks and we expect Nortel Networks to remain an industry-leading provider of end-to-end optical networking solutions,” Dunn said. 

The latest job cuts will result in charges of about $600 million, mainly in the second and third quarters. These charges are in addition to the expected second-quarter charge of about $150 million for previous job cuts. 

Nortel now expects second-quarter revenue to be flat to down 5 percent from the $2.91 billion reported in the first quarter. Just last month, Nortel said it didn’t expect a significant change in sequential revenue growth. 

However, Nortel expects sequential improvement in the pro forma loss from continuing operations from the 14 cents a share reported in the first quarter. 

The pro forma figure won’t include acquisition-related costs, charges, stock-option compensation from acquisitions and divestitures, a gain or loss on the sale of businesses, gains associated with certain investment sales, and any associated items included in the income or loss of equity accounted for as investments. 

Nortel, which had annual revenue of $17.51 billion last year, maintains its long-held goal of having a break-even cost structure in place by the fourth quarter. But with the latest realignment, the company cut the fourth-quarter revenue target to $3.2 billion from $3.5 billion. 

Nortel said it is considering more opportunities to raise capital to strengthen its balance sheet and liquidity, which may include an equity-based financing transaction. A company spokesman said that at the end of the first quarter Nortel had $3.1 billion cash and $4.8 billion debt. 

In Wednesday morning trading, shares of Nortel climbed 11 cents, or 4.4 percent, to $2.63 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Openwave agrees to acquire SignalSoft Corp.

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

REDWOOD CITY – Communications infrastructure software company Openwave Systems Inc. has agreed to acquire SignalSoft Corp. for about $59 million, or $2.26 a share. 

Openwave also said in a statement Wednesday it has acquired technology from Ellipsus Systems Inc. for $17.5 million. 

The proposed acquisition of SignalSoft extends Openwave’s mobile data services portfolio, the company said, adding complementary technology and location-based services knowledge. Openwave plans to use SignalSoft’s $45 million in existing cash to finance the transaction. 

Openwave expects to complete the SignalSoft acquisition, subject to certain conditions, during the third quarter.

Rescue crews battling helplessness and fatigue return to river to recover bodies in Oklahoma

By Jennifer L. Brown Associated Press Writer
Thursday May 30, 2002

By Jennifer L. Brown 

Associated Press Writer 


WEBBERS FALLS, Okla. – Divers who have battled thunderstorms and fatigue returned to the murky Arkansas River on Wednesday to resume the painstaking recovery of bodies from a deadly bridge collapse. 

Crews using sonar and a large crane have recovered the bodies of 13 people and pulled 10 vehicles from the water. Authorities believe more victims will be found. 

Oklahoma Army National Guard troops planned to sweep the river’s shoreline as far as two miles downstream from the collapsed Interstate 40 bridge to look for the personal effects of the victims, said Michelann Ooten, spokeswoman for the state Department of Civil Emergency Management. 

The recovery operation has put divers and other workers under an emotional strain, Ooten said. 

“We’re having a beneficial effect, but at the same time, there’s a feeling of helplessness that we’re not doing all we can be doing, just because of the obstacles and treacherous conditions,” said Dennis Splawn, a diver with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. 

An unknown number of people are still missing after an out-of-control barge hit the Interstate 40 bridge on Sunday and knocked out a 500-foot section of highway, sending about a dozen vehicles plunging 62 feet into the river. 

The bodies of seven women and six men have been recovered from the water, said highway patrol Lt. Chris West. As each body is removed, the recovery crews stand in somber vigil and pray. 

Among the dead were Misty Johnson, 28, and James Johnson, 30, of Lavaca, Ark., a couple said to be en route to Tulsa with their 3-year-old daughter, Shay Nicole. 

“We do believe we have very good, reliable information that the child was traveling with them,” Ooten said. 

Divers also managed to pull up the body of Andrew Clements, 35, an Army captain who was driving across the country to begin a new chapter in his life. 

Clements picked up his German shepherd in California and headed east to Alexandria, Va., where he and his wife were set to close a deal on a new two-story house. By Sunday morning, he was crossing the I-40 bridge when the barge hit. 

“What were the odds of something like that happening?” asked Ronald Clements, his father. His son left behind three children, including an 8-week-old. 

Dental records eventually confirmed Andrew Clements’ identity, but photos of the crushed car had already given it away: There was a dog cage in the back seat. 

Other victims included Gail Shanahan, 49, who was returning to Texas with another horse trainer, Maggie Green, when their truck and a trailer hauling four horses plunged off the bridge. Searchers have pulled three horses out of the river. 

Norman police Detective Wayne Martin and his wife, Susan, were two more victims. They were heading to Arkansas for a family reunion Sunday morning, but never arrived. 

“We are pretty well resolved to the facts,” said Norman police Lt. Glenn Dobry. “It’s extremely tough.” 

George Black of the National Transportation Safety Board said a barge crewman who visited with captain Joe Dedmon five to 10 minutes before the accident said everything seemed normal. It is believed that Dedmon blacked out at the helm. 

Others who were not with the captain said they heard no alarm or change in the sound of the engine that would indicate he was trying to avoid a crash, Black said. 

Authorities said it will cost about $15 million and as long as six months to repair the bridge. 

Motorists were discouraged from driving in the area, even on alternate routes, because bridges on those roads were not built to withstand the traffic that crossed the I-40 structure, authorities said. 

Transportation officials said an inspection a year ago of the 1,988-foot bridge found no difficulties. 

“This was not a bridge failure, this was a bridge knockdown,” said Bruce Taylor, chief engineer for the state transportation department. Taylor said the bridge was built in 1967 had a 75-year life expectancy.

Pakistan must stop militants to avoid war, Indian officials say

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

NEW DELHI, India — If Pakistan wants peace, it must act urgently to stop Islamic militants from infiltrating Indian territory to carry out terror attacks in the dispute over Kashmir, India’s foreign minister said Wednesday. 

Jaswant Singh stopped short of saying how long India could remain patient. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said after meeting with both sides that “war is not inevitable.” But Pakistan’s president said his country’s defense forces were “ready to face any challenge.” 

Also Wednesday, shelling by both sides continued across the line dividing predominantly Muslim Kashmir between the two nuclear-armed rivals, killing 23 civilians, the nations said. 

India has said it does not believe Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf’s claim to be clamping down on Muslim extremists who want Kashmir to either be part of Pakistan, which is Muslim, or to be independent. India and Pakistan have fought two wars over Kashmir. 

“It is vital that he recognizes the urgency of the situation,” Singh said. “India has waited patiently for the fulfillment of those commitments. They are vital for peace and also vital to the global fight against terrorism.” 

Straw said Wednesday night that the international community could help Pakistan end cross-border terrorism in India through “precise assistance.” He declined to elaborate. 

After his meetings in New Delhi and Islamabad, Straw said, “The situation is dangerous, but war is not inevitable. It’s also clear that neither side wishes to have a war.” 

But Pakistan’s state TV quoted Musharraf as telling air force officers Wednesday, “India has created a dangerous situation in the region and the defense forces were ready to face any challenge if war was thrust upon us.” 

A war between India and Pakistan would be their fourth since attaining independence from Britain in 1947. 

Straw said it was up to Musharraf to prove he is serious about stopping Muslim militants. The two met Tuesday in Islamabad. 

“The testament of any statement is by actions and not by words,” Straw said. “The international community looks to press Musharraf to assure that this undertaking is fulfilled on the ground.” 

Straw refused to detail his meetings except to say they covered “material worthy of further discussion.” 

According to Pakistan’s U.N. Ambassador Munir Akran, the possibility of a 300-strong helicopter monitoring force along the Kashmir border was discussed by Straw. 

“As far as Pakistan is concerned, if India was to accept that, we would also consider accepting that on both sides of the Line of Control to monitor the situation,” said Akran. Straw said he would phone British Prime Minister Tony Blair, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana and the EU minister for foreign relations, Chris Patten, during his overnight flight back to Britain. 

Enron exec did not give nod to destroy documents

By Kristen Hays The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

HOUSTON — Two Arthur Andersen accountants testified Wednesday that they didn’t consider an instruction to comply with the firm’s document policy as an order to shred Enron-related paperwork. 

John Boudreaux and Jennifer Stevenson, both accountants on Andersen’s Enron audit team, said they heard two partners urge compliance with the policy while informing workers Oct. 23 about an informal Securities and Exchange Commission inquiry into some of Enron’s transactions. 

Their immediate boss, Thomas Bauer, mentioned both issues in a morning meeting that day, they said. Then David Duncan, Andersen’s former top Enron auditor, announced the inquiry and instructed his team to comply with the policy at a bigger meeting that afternoon. 

Both testified that they didn’t link the two issues as code to destroy documents to keep them out of the hands of the SEC. 

Stevenson said she threw away old handwritten notes, drafts and other extraneous documents “not in terms of what (the SEC) would see — just in terms of completing audit documentation.” 

Boudreaux said he spent 90 minutes that day going through files for similar extraneous documents, throwing out old drafts and deleting personal e-mails, like messages pertaining to a fantasy football league. 

“I don’t recall any sense of urgency,” Boudreaux said. 

Andersen is charged with obstruction of justice for allegedly destroying documents as the SEC began a probe of Enron’s finances before the energy company collapsed amid questions about its bookkeeping and corporate structure. 

Andersen says it was cleaning its files under firm policy, which calls for retention of final audit conclusions and destruction of extraneous papers and e-mails. All Andersen witnesses who have testified said they did not think they were doing anything wrong. 

Later Wednesday, former Andersen auditor Shane Philpot testified he directed his team to keep all documents related to audits for Portland General Electric, an Enron subsidiary, after receiving a reminder of the firm’s document retention policy. 

“It seemed to be the conservative thing to do,” Philpot said

DEA raids Santa Rosa medical marijuana club

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

SANTA ROSA — Federal agents raided a medical marijuana buyers club here Wednesday and arrested two people. 

A U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration spokesman said two addresses were searched, including the club near downtown. Marijuana, cash, a car and a weapon were seized. 

Authorities declined to identify the arrested pair, saying all information about the case was sealed by a federal judge. 

According to one witness, at least six DEA agents stormed the storefront around 10:45 a.m. 

“They made a big show of it,” Mark Nabavi, who runs the Printing Express store next door, told the Santa Rosa Press Democrat. “They took down everyone’s license plate number.” 

In February, DEA agents raided a San Francisco medical marijuana club and arrested four people amid an ongoing tug-of-war between local and federal officials over the sale of pot for medicinal purposes. 

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that it is illegal to distribute marijuana for medical purposes. But some local California law enforcement officials have said their job is to enforce the laws of California, where voters overwhelmingly approved medical marijuana use.

Another Davis aide resigns during contracts controversy

The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

SACRAMENTO – Another aide to Gov. Gray Davis resigned Wednesday as the administration continued its efforts to put to rest a continuing controversy surrounding a potentially costly computer contract. 

Vince Patel resigned as the governor’s interim director of e-government only 3 1/2 weeks after he was appointed to the post. 

Patel, previously director of executive information systems for the state, was appointed May 5 to succeed Arun Baheti, who was fired after he accepted a $25,000 campaign contribution for the governor from the Oracle Corp. 

Administration officials said that violated a rule against the governor’s aides accepting campaign donations. 

The state signed a $95 million, no-bid contract with Oracle last year that was supposed to save up to $111 million through volume purchases and maintenance of database software. 

But the state auditor says the deal could end up costing the state up to $41 million more than if it had stuck to its previous software supply arrangements.

L.A. Veterans Chapel dedicated to 99-year-old comedian Bob Hope

By Bob Thomas The Associated Press
Thursday May 30, 2002

LOS ANGELES – When Bob Hope was named an “honorary veteran” in 1997 by an act of Congress and President Clinton’s signature, the comedian remarked: “To be numbered among the men and women I admire most is the greatest honor I have ever received.” 

It seemed fitting then that on Wednesday, in recognition of his 99th birthday, another honor was awarded to Hope — the dedication of the Bob Hope Veterans Chapel at the National Cemetery in Los Angeles. 

The setting was ideal. Thousands of small flags left from Memorial Day waved in the afternoon breeze over the grave markers of veterans. 

Hope’s travels on behalf of the military began on May 6, 1941, when he bused a troupe of entertainers to March Field, near Riverside. They put on show for the Army Air Corps trainees that was broadcast over radio, and Hope was astonished by the waves of laughter and applause that greeted his quips. 

The response was light years beyond what he could evoke from studio audiences in Hollywood. 

“This is it!” he said excitedly. “From now on, we’ll do all the radio shows in front of servicemen.” 

For seven years, with two exceptions, he performed the radio program before men and women of the service. During the war, he traveled from North Africa to Iceland to the South Pacific and points in between, sometimes venturing in the line of fire. 

“I have critics everywhere,” he cracked. 

From his career in vaudeville and Broadway, Hope knew exactly what his audiences wanted. He gave them jokes about officers, military food and living conditions, and brought along Hollywood beauties to warm the hearts of homesick GI’s. 

This reporter first encountered Hope as an Associated Press correspondent in Fresno in 1944. He brought a busload of fellow entertainers from Hollywood to rock the airmen and women at Hammer Field. The laughter was explosive. 

After a 90-minute show, the exhilarated Hope loaded the troupe onto the bus for the four-hour trip back home. 

World War II was followed by the Cold War. 

In 1948, Sen. Stuart Symington, a Missouri Democrat, asked Bob to take a show to Germany to bring much-needed Christmas cheer to the overworked Americans during the Berlin Air Lift. This time his wife, Dolores, weary of Bob-less holidays, declared she was going, too. Once a torch singer, her rich voice added to the entertainment. 

The Berlin show was the beginning of a Christmas tradition that took his television show to bases, ships and hospitals in Alaska, Europe, the Far East, Greenland, the Caribbean, North Africa, Vietnam and finally, the Gulf War. 

His tour de force came in 1987, when he flew around the world in eight days, with stops along the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans as well as the Persian Gulf. 

He was rarely sentimental about the tours. Asked why he traveled so widely despite a busy career, he replied, “I guess I’m hooked on box lunches.” 

But he cherished the hundreds of honors bestowed on him. 

Incapacitated by old age, he didn’t attend Wednesday’s dedication. He would have loved the event. 

Except for two things: too many politicians’ platitudes and not enough laughs. 

UC Berkeley employee accused of embezzling

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Wednesday May 29, 2002

UC Berkeley police have arrested an employee and an off-campus accomplice for allegedly stealing $250,000 in BART tickets from a university transportation office and reselling them on the street. 

The employee, 29-year-old Kimya McFadden, was an administrative assistant at the campus-run Berkeley Transit/Ridesharing/Parking Store. The joint city-university venture sells discounted transit passes to city and UC Berkeley employees. 

McFadden, hired in March 2001, was temporarily assigned as a supervisor overseeing cashiering operations in September 2001, where she remained until her May 10 arrest. 

McFadden began stealing BART tickets in April or May of 2001, according to UC Berkeley Police Capt. William Cooper, and funneling them to 26-year-old Zikomo J. Robinson of Oakland, who resold them below face value and gave McFadden a cut. 

“He was doing most of the selling, it looked like,” Cooper said, noting that $48 tickets went for $32, and $32 tickets went for $20 to $25. 

The university does not believe any other employees were involved, but it is investigating the possibility of a second suspect outside the office who may have resold tickets. 

Cooper said the university has already put some temporary controls in place at the TRiP Store. The shop has limited the number of people with access to ticket inventories, changed the way tickets are distributed to cashiers for sales and established stronger procedures to account for each cashier’s allotment. 

“We’re going to make sure the holes are plugged up,” Cooper said, adding that the university may make adjustments after a full audit of the store is complete. 

TRiP store employees referred all requests for comment to Cooper. 

BART initially received word of black market ticket sales earlier this year and traced the stubs back to UC Berkeley, Cooper said. The university then pursued the investigation and arrested the two suspects. 

McFadden, a Richmond resident, is scheduled to be arraigned in Alameda County Superior Court on Thursday. UC Berkeley police arrested her on suspicion of embezzlement, conspiracy and possession of stolen property. Officers picked up Robinson on suspicion of conspiracy and possession of stolen property. 

Cooper said the charges the district attorney will actually file are unclear. Calls to the district attorney’s office were not returned by the Planet’s deadline. 



Light needed for crossing Shattuck between Ashby and Alcatraz

Barbara Judd
Wednesday May 29, 2002

To the Editor: 


In order for “safe,” quieter streets to be useful, you need to be able to cross the busy streets. Derby has a light to get across MLK and Telegraph, but not to cross Shattuck. Except for that, it is perfect for non-motorized Flatlanders to commute to Willard. It is already a “right turn only” street for non-emergency cars. Thus it would not inconvenience traffic to put a pedestrian and bike crossing only signal there, like the one at Channing and MLK. (The light a few blocks south where Adeline splits off from Shattuck is very dangerous to use. The walk light is only on when the slightly right turn lane has the green light to cross the crosswalk.) The bike-activated light at Channing is wonderful. If it is at all convenient, I plan my routes through it. 

Less inconvenient for car traffic but useful for otheres would be some sort of light to cross Shattuck between Ashby and Alcatraz. Neither big A street is safe for young riders nor pleasant for walkers, and Shattuck is remarkably hard to cross in that section. 


Barbara Judd 


Out & About Calendar

Wednesday May 29, 2002

Wednesday, May 29


Paul Geremia 

Country Blues 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Thursday, May 30


Human Rights At Home and Abroad: A Strategy For Peace 

An educational forum to probe the relationship of the U.S. and the U.N. 

7 to 9 p.m. 

Fellowship Hall of Humanity 

390 27th Street (between Broadway & Telegraph) 




Bob Dylan Song Night 

An evening of Dylan Songs revisited 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$12.50 advance, $13.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Friday, May 31


Paramount Movie Classics-  

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, 1958 

Doors at 7, Mighty Wurlitzer at 7:30, Newsreel, Cartoon, Previews, and Prize give-away game Dec-O-Win and feature Film 

2025 Broadway 




Blue Riders of the Purple Sage 

Classic cowboy harmonies 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Saturday, June 1


50th anniversary of the Little Train at Tilden Regional Park 

Grizzly Peak Boulevard and Lomas Cantadas in Berkeley 

For more information, call 544-2200 


Sand Castle and Sand Sculpture Contest 

9 a.m. for participants registration 

9- 12 p.m. (Judging starts at noon) 

Crown Beach, Otis and Shore Line Drives 


For more information, call 521-6887 or 748-4565 



The Bluegrass Intentions 

Innovative traditionalists 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


White Oak Dance Project 

Mikhail Baryshnikov & the White Oak Dance Project exploring the boundaries of modern dance. Three Berkeley performances.  

8 p.m. 

Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus  

Bancroft Way at Telegraph 

Tickets through Cal Performances 642-9988 or www.calperfs.berkeley.edu 

$36, $48, $62 and half-price to CAL students, $2 discount to others. 


Sunday, June 2


Healing/Tibetan Yoga 

"Stimulating Healing and Renewal through Tibetan Yoga" 

Tibetan Nyingma Institute 

1815 Highland Place 




Ice Cream Social 

An annual school PTA fundraiser 

Includes a student talent show, auction, cake walk and field games 

Rosa Parks Elementary School 

Noon to 4 p.m. 



Diablo Symphony Orchestra 

Verdi Spectacular! 

Soloists: Lyric soprano Karen Anderson, soprano Aimee Puentes and tenor Min-sheng Yang. Conducted by Barbara Day Turner 

2 p.m. 

Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts 

1601 Civic Center at Locust Dr. 

Walnut Creek 

925-7469, website: www.dlrca.org 

Tickets $8, $15 and $18 


Casey Neill 

Celtic American folk roots 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Anthropology Museum Opening  

Native Californian Cultures - Family Day 

Sunday, June 2, 1:30 PM- 3:30 PM  

Hearst Museum Courtyard 

Storytelling, children's games and basketry 

with Julia and Lucy Parker. Julia Parker, a cultural  

interpreter, supervises the Indian Cultural Program  

in Yosemite. Lucy Parker is a traditional artist who 

crafts jewelry and baskets as well as games. 

The Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology 

Kroeber Hall at the corner of Bancroft Way and College 

The phone number is (510) 643-7648. 

Admission is $2 for adults, $1 for seniors, and $.50 for  

16 and under- Free to the public on Thursdays. 


Monday, June 3


Poetry Express - Theme Night: "love and marriage" 

7-9 p.m. 

A community open mic welcoming all artists 

Berkeley Bakery & Cafe 

1561 Solano Avenue 



Thursday, June 6


Spencer Bohren 

New Orleans Bluesman 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$15.50 advance, $16.50 at the door 


Big Brother is Watching 

Speaker James Bamford, author of "Body of Secrets, anatomy of Ultra-Secret National Security Agency" 

6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 

The Independent Institute 

100 Swan Way, Oakland 

RSVP 632-1366 

Cost: $35 includes the book, $14 lecture only, $10 members. 


Friday, June 7


What Does It Mean To Be Human? 

Debate between Princeton Professor and author Peter Singer and Chairman for Center for Bioethics & Culture, Nigel M. de S. Cameron. Moderated by host of KQED Forum, Michael Krasny 

Calvin Simmons Theater / Henry J. Kaiser Auditorium 

10 Tenth Street, Oakland 

Register online at www.thecbc.org  

$25 in advance, $45 at the door 


Cats & Jammers 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Saturday, June 8


Cats & Jammers 

Doors 7:30, show 8 p.m. 

Freight & Salvage  

1111 Addison St. 


$16.50 advance, $17.50 at the door 


Live Oak Park Fair 

Original fine crafts & art, tasty food, live entertainment including: Splash Circus, The Prescott Clowns, Jean-Paul Valjean (circus performance), Fat Chance Bellydance, Urban Harmony, Johnny Casino (children's lounge lizard), Zappo the Magician, with M.C. Wavy Gravy. Benefit for Camp Winnarainbow. 

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Live Oak Park 

Shattuck & Berryman 

Further information: 898-3282 

Free Admission

’Jackets facing another ace in North Coast semifinal

By Jared Green, Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday May 29, 2002

The Berkeley High baseball team has faced a lot of challenges this season, and so far the Yellowjackets have passed each with flying colors. They beat top-ranked California High and its ace, Adam Brisentine. They dealt Pinole Valley’s Kurt Koehler his first loss in three seasons. They won the ACCAL title and beat Antioch and De La Salle to reach the North Coast Section semifinals. 

Berkeley’s next challenge may be their greatest yet: facing second-seeded Clayton Valley today. The Eagles will throw their ace, Adam Elliot, one of the top pitchers in the region. Clayton Valley has given up just one run in their first two NCS games, wins over Arroyo and Foothill, and will have the home-field advantage against the ’Jackets. 

Berkeley will counter with junior lefthander Sean Souders, who has been at his best in the toughest matchups this season. He was on the hill against Brisentine and Koehler and outdueled each handily. 

“Sean is up and ready,” Berkeley head coach Tim Moellering said Tuesday. “He’s done well in big games so far this year.” 

Souders will have an edge on Wednesday, as he hasn’t pitched since the opening round against Antioch a week ago. Elliot, on the other hand, had to throw 2 1/3 innings against Foothill on Saturday, and also threw in a workout for scouts earlier this week. That means all things being equal, Souders should be able to go deeper into the game than his counterpart. 

Berkeley is also riding high on offense after scoring 12 and nine runs in the first two rounds of the NCS, respectively. The ’Jackets have been getting production throughout the lineup, with seven-hitter Clinton Calhoun hitting a grand slam against De La Salle on Saturday and Lee Franklin and DeAndre Miller lighting fires at the top of the order. 

Cleanup hitter Matt Toma said the ’Jackets won’t change their aggressive hitting style against Elliot, despite the possibility of the Eagle hurler tiring out. 

“We’ve heard (Elliot) has very good control, so we can’t sit back and wait for him to get tired,” Toma said. “We just have to jump on our pitches when we get them.” 

Moellering said his hitters won’t be intimidated by Elliot’s reputation. 

“It helps a lot to have beaten a pitcher like Koehler,” he said. “I don’t think we’re afraid of anyone.” 

If the ’Jackets win today, they will move on to the NCS championship on Saturday, to be played at the Oakland Coliseum. While Toma admits that the players can’t help but look forward, as “everyone here wants to play at the Coliseum,” Moellering wants to make sure everyone is focused on today’s game. 

“I’m trying to get everyone to concentrate on this one,” he said. 

NOTES: The winner of today’s game will face the winner of the Newark Memorial-Grenada semifinal... Berkeley catcher Sam Geaney, who knows Elliot, said the Clayton Valley ace has signed to play at University of Nevada-Las Vegas but is hoping to be drafted by a Major League team... Most of the Berkeley High underclassmen will be taking the SAT on Saturday morning, so Moellering said he will try to get the championship game moved back from noon if the ’Jackets reach the final.

Embattled housing project approved

By Kurtis Alexander, Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday May 29, 2002

In a neighborhood battle that pitted the small-town values of south Berkeley against the city’s needs for affordable housing, city leaders carried the housing developers to victory. 

At Tuesday night’s City Council meeting, councilmembers approved development of a 40-unit housing project at 2517 Sacramento St. The project, submitted by the nonprofit Affordable Housing Associates, will provide housing exclusively for seniors at monthly rates as low as $200 as well ground-floor retail space likely to include a small grocery and cafe. 

Approval of the project comes after more than two years of back and forth between neighbors who had urged a smaller, less intrusive project and housing advocates who said the need for more affordable units was desperate. 

The disagreement culminated, in the three weeks preceding council’s decision, in a city-sponsored mediation process that left just one development option amicable to both parties. 

The problem with this option was that it would cost the city $300,000 and eliminate four of the proposed housing units. 

Refusing to make such sacrifices, councilmembers essentially dismissed the appeal of the neighbors who wanted to change the project and approved the same proposal before them earlier this month which they had subsequently ordered out for revision. 

“I don’t think we got what we thought we were going to get [with the mediation],” said Councilmember Polly Armstrong. She called the $5000 mediation expense a “rip- off.” 

Consequently, Armstrong joined councilmembers Maudelle Shirek, Miriam Hawley, Linda Maio and Kriss Worthington in winning a 5-2 vote for the project and ending years of neighborhood debate. 


While AHA developers were on hand to applaud council’s decision, neighbors for the project were not present at Tuesday’s meeting. 

Their noticeable absence bucked their two-year trend of heavy involvement at public hearings. Many speculated that the neighbors assumed council would opt for the plan that came out of the mediation process, and consequently, stayed home. 

Councilmember Betty Olds, joining Mayor Shirley Dean in voting against the project, staked out the position of the absent neighbors. 

“Neighborhoods have a right to be heard and have a compromise. This is not a compromise,” Olds said. 

But Councilmember Shirek snubbed Olds’ comments and led a one-track charge for housing. 

“I don’t understand how people can oppose a much-needed, well-designed project,” she said. 

The only change to the project, since it was considered by council earlier this month, is the addition of two to five parking spaces. 

With Tuesday’s go-ahead, construction of the project could begin by the end of this year, said AHA project manager Kevin Zwick. 

The project is slated for completion at the end of 2003, and AHA will begin taking applications from seniors who want to live there in summer 2003, Zwick said. 

City needs zero tolerance on traffic issues

Nick Roosevelt
Wednesday May 29, 2002

To the Editor: 


I am writing regarding your article of May 27, 2002, regarding traffic (“City considers lower speed limits”). 

I think traffic calming is great for the people on the street where you put it. I don't think it is possible to do that for every street where families live. The reason why people like it so much is that it reduces traffic on their street. We can't reduce traffic on every street and expect to solve the problem. Traffic calming is sort of like handing a drug addict a Band-Aid for the cut they got when passed out. It does not solve what is a citywide problem. 

What is so horrible about enforcement? We have an army of parking officers who implement a zero-tolerance policy regarding parking regulations. Why can't we have at least a few traffic safety officers who implement a zero-tolerance policy with regard to speed limits, crosswalks, and stop signs? 

The City of Berkeley owes it to its residents to come up with a plan that sets measurable goals and works until they are achieved. This includes measuring the average speed and various times of day on various roads, then starting a PR and enforcement campaign, and doing follow-up measurements at regular intervals until the problem has been largely 


The PR campaign should include speaking with organizations, such as AC Transit and UPS, which have large vehicles on the streets of Berkeley, and asking them to take measures to ensure their drivers will abide by traffic safety regulations as well as publicizing the effort to reduce average speeds on Berkeley streets. I have ridden in AC Transit buses traveling in excess of 45 MPH on Henry Street, where the speed limit is 25 MPH. 

Unsafe traffic conditions diminish the quality of life for all of us who live in Berkeley. We need politicians and other government officials to take responsible action to make our streets safer. 


Nick Roosevelt 


Baker, Jackson make All Pac-10

Daily Planet Wire Services
Wednesday May 29, 2002

WALNUT CREEK – The Cal baseball team had two players, junior catcher John Baker and sophomore first baseman Conor Jackson, selected to the 2002 All-Pac-10 Baseball Team, Pac-10 Commissioner Tom Hansen announced Tuesday.  

Baker finished the 2002 season batting a team-leading .383 with 12 doubles, a triple, five home runs and 29 RBI despite missing three weeks with a broken right hand when he was hit by a pitch. He also has a Pac-10 leading .516 on-base percentage, had a .456 batting average against Pac-10 competition and hit a team-best .444 with runners in scoring position. Baker was the May 13 Pac-10 Player of the Week and is one of 10 finalists for the Johnny Bench Award as the nation’s top collegiate catcher.  

Jackson concluded the 2002 campaign batting .382 with 16 doubles, two triples, 16 home runs, 61 RBI and Pac-10 leading 152 total bases. He hit .443 with runners in scoring position and twice hit home runs in four consecutive games this past season. Jackson was the April 22 Pac-10 Player of the Week and is a finalist for the Dick Howser Trophy as the nation’s top collegiate baseball player. He was also selected to try for the USA National Team in June.  

Four other Cal players were named Pac-10 Honorable Mention - sophomore right-hander Matt Brown, senior right-hander Trevor Hutchinson, freshman infielder/outfielder David Nicholson and senior second baseman Carson White.  

Brown finished the year 5-3 with a 3.70 ERA and six saves in 21 appearances. He was the April 15 Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week after throwing his first collegiate complete game with four hits, one runs, one walk and a career-high 10 strikeouts April 14 versus Arizona.  

In 2002 Hutchinson was 7-5 with a 3.38 ERA, two complete games and had a team-high 94 strikeouts and 117.0 innings. He became Cal’s all-time strikeout leader with 284 strikeouts from 1999-02 and is second on the Bears’ career innings pitched list (370 2/3). Hutchinson was the April 8 Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week after an April 5 victory over UCLA.  

Nicholson batted .305 with seven doubles, a triple, six home runs and 23 RBI as a true freshman. He also led Cal in runs scored (46) and stolen bases (10), starting 36 games at third base and 17 games in center field. White hit .339 this season with 15 doubles, seven home runs and 32 RBI. He finished his two-year Bear career batting .338 with 88 runs, 153 hits, 34 doubles, four triples, 15 home runs and 81 RBI.

Berkeley Police Chief to retire

By Devona Walker Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday May 29, 2002

Berkeley Police Chief Dash Butler has endured a lot in his 31 years of service to the community— riots, numerous protests, a growing department and community and a prolific citizenry. As of July 13, Butler will retire, and the community must learn to endure without him. 

“The thing I respect most about Dash is that he’s a tough cop, but he’s also a very human one as well,” said City Manager Weldon Rucker, who will soon have to search for a replacement. 

Rucker says the current climate in law enforcement will make conducting a national search difficult. Most likely, an acting chief will be appointed internally to fill the opening. 

“What has made him so valuable is that he has served as an officer as well as a chief. Out of his 31 years on the force, he’s spent 12 years as chief and the rest as an officer,” Rucker said. “One of his greatest accomplishments is, as an officer and a chief, has been the leadership he has taken in the drug task force.”  

Rucker recalled one situation in particular that was very difficult for the department and the community. Hostages were taken in 1990, and the tension was on. According to Rucker, that was a situation in which many knew going in there were going to be casualties. 

“We all knew someone was going to die, and we just hoped it was not going to be an innocent member of the community,” he added. 

At this time, Butler had been chief for only a few months, according to Rucker, and he was in a very tight spot with the eyes of the community upon him.  

“He showed us that day what he was made of,” Rucker said, adding that the manner in which the police and the newly appointed chief handled the situation showed great character. 

The incident in question was Sept. 27, 1990, when a man named Mehrdad Dashti entered Henry’s Pub House Restaurant and Grill with an automatic pistol and then without warning opened fire into the air and at seated patrons. Within minutes, seven people were shot and 37 of the original 67 patrons were taken hostage.  

During the next several hours, the police tried to engage in negotiations with Dashti and negotiated the release of some of the hostages. Negotiations were complicated by the fact that the gunman was suffering from an apparent mental health disorder. 

In the end, the Berkeley Police Department managed to minimize the risk to the majority of the hostages and end the standoff successfully. One UC Berkeley student was killed by the gunman. One officer received a superficial wound from the gunman. And the gunman himself was eventually shot and killed by officers. 

One hundred and fifty police officers and reserves as well as numerous non-sworn department members were utilized in this incident. It was perhaps one of the largest of such incidents in recent history. As a result, the Berkeley Police Department trained other departments on how to handle a hostage situation of such magnitude.  

“When it was time for our team to go in, we just knew someone was going to die. There was one hostage dead already,” Rucker said. But upon arriving on the scene no more casualties, other than the gunman himself, occurred.  

A full summary of this incident and the strategies that the Berkeley Police Department used in apprehending this suspect were published in the national Law Enforcement magazine. 

The next year, Berkeley was engrossed in a fire that has forever scarred its landscape and also necessitated strong leadership from public officials. 

Search for a replacement 

“Now it’s time for us to begin a new chapter,” Rucker added. 

According to Rucker, he will make the search for a replacement police chief as open to the public as possible.  

But Deputy Chief Roy Mizner will likely be appointed as acting chief until the city finds a replacement.

Passengers matter more than profits

Dr. Max Alfert
Wednesday May 29, 2002

To the Editor: 


For some time, the public has been treated to color-coded warnings about possible terrorist acts, none of which materialized. No doubt many people’s anxiety, if not even paranoia, was increased by such empty warnings, because they could personally do nothing about them and could only rely on the government to protect them.  

It now turned out that the government and Mr. Bush were warned about a non-specific plan of Bin Laden's to stage an airplane hijacking, a news that reached Mr. Bush in August 2001, while he was on vacation in Texas, and that was not communicated to the public. People are incensed about this, and security Advisor Candy Rice was not specific enough to bother the public and possibly cause harm to the airlines if people canceled flights they had planned.  

In later broadcasts, surviving family members of Sept. 11 victims expressed anger and disappointment to have learned that the income the airline companies had a higher priority than the lives of passengers.  


Dr. Max Alfert 


Hanging corpse found in Claremont Canyon

By Kurtis Alexander, Daily Planet Staff
Wednesday May 29, 2002

An early morning hiker in the Claremont Canyon Regional Preserve was shaken Tuesday when he stumbled upon a human body hanging lifeless from the branch of a tree, according to East Bay Regional Park officials. 

A preliminary investigation following the hiker’s 7 a.m. report branded the incident a suicide that was apparently committed during the late night hours of Memorial Day. 

The body has so far been identified only as an East Bay man in his early 30s. Park police have withheld his identity pending the notification of his family. 

The body was sighted beside a dirt fire road, three quarters of a mile from the preserve’s boundary on Stonewall Road in the Claremont neighborhood, according to park officials. 

The tree that served as the brace for the hanging was just feet from the restricted access road, officials said. 

“Unfortunately, these kinds of things happen in parks, but not that often,” said Sgt. Jon King of the park police. 

Park officials closed the fire road to the public for several hours Tuesday while the body was removed from the park and the scene was surveyed by police. 

Claremont resident Leon Regelson, taking his daily walk, was surprised to find the access road closed and to see a number of law enforcement vehicles on site, representing park police and the Oakland Police Department. 

“I’ve been walking up there for years, and I’ve never heard of any violence or anything,” Regelson said.  

“People are generally real friendly on the trail,” he added. 

Park police hope to have the investigation completed by Friday. Officers were not revealing any further details about the situation.

Learn more about the United Nations

Bill Trampleasure
Wednesday May 29, 2002

To the Editor: 


From Daily Planet Ambassador to “helping to save the world” is turning out to be the correct move in the time left for this Berkeley born and bred septuagenarian. It means more time to be me before I “shuffle off this mortal coil.” An occasional longer nap, more writing time, more lawn mowing time, more grandpa time, more United Nations Association (East Bay) energy, and more varied U.N.-flag-waving and peace-pilgrimage-walking time.  

Occasionally I shall be out there somewhere waving my U.N. flag, handing out “War is not healthy for children and other living things” stickers and urging folks to let our government know that we are sick and tired of war, any and all wars against any and all so-called “enemies.” 

Some of us agree with Eleanor Roosevelt in her last book (1963), “Tomorrow Is Now”: “Any step, however small, that leads to international peace, to universal understanding, to strengthening the machinery of the United Nations is a good step... I am aware that if we commit ourselves wholeheartedly to the strengthening of the United Nations — and I share the opinion of Clark M. Eichelberger that the United Nations should be the foundation of policy, not a diplomatic tool — there will be outcries from people complaining, ‘That is a risk.’ Of course it is.” 

I believe all of us should read Phyllis Bennis' 1996 book, “Calling the Shots: How Washington Dominates Today's UN.” Buy it, borrow it, or steal it! But read it! (No, don't steal it!) 

Please, learn about the United Nations and about our misuse and abuse of it. Our U.N. support has been largely a sham and a shame. All wars are forms of terrorism. 


Bill Trampleasure 



Wednesday May 29, 2002

Historical Highlight 

On May 29, 1790, Rhode Island became the 13th original colony to ratify the U.S. Constitution. 


On this date 

In 1765, Patrick Henry denounced the Stamp Act before Virginia’s House of Burgesses, saying, “If this be treason, make the most of it!” 

In 1848, Wisconsin became the 30th state of the union. 

In 1917, the 35th president of the United States, John F. Kennedy, was born in Brookline, Mass. 

In 1932, World War I veterans began arriving in Washington to demand cash bonuses they weren’t scheduled to receive for another 13 years. 

In 1942, the movie “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” starring James Cagney, premiered at a war-bonds benefit in New York. 

In 1942, Bing Crosby, the Ken Darby Singers and the John Scott Trotter Orchestra recorded Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas” in Los Angeles for Decca Records. 

In 1942, actor John Barrymore died in Hollywood at age 60. 

In 1953, Mount Everest was conquered as Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Tensing Norkay of Nepal became the first climbers to reach the summit. 

In 1985, 35 people were killed in rioting that erupted between British and Italian spectators at the European Cup soccer final in Brussels, Belgium. 

In 1987, a jury in Los Angeles found “Twilight Zone” movie director John Landis and four associates innocent of involuntary manslaughter in the movie-set deaths of actor Vic Morrow and two children. 


Ten years ago 

Undeclared presidential candidate Ross Perot held a rally in Orlando, Fla., that was carried by two-way television satellite to five other states. 


Five years ago 

In closing arguments, Timothy McVeigh’s attorney urged jurors not to be swayed by sympathy for the Oklahoma City bombing victims, after a prosecutor delivered a wrenching summation that portrayed McVeigh as a terrorist who killed children in the warped belief he was a patriot. 

One year ago 

Four followers of Osama bin Laden were convicted in New York of a global conspiracy to murder Americans, including the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa that killed 224 people. President Bush, meeting in Los Angeles with California Gov. Gray Davis, rejected a plea for federal caps on soaring electricity bills. The Supreme Court ruled that disabled golfer Casey Martin could use a cart to ride in tournaments. 


Today’s birthdays 

Comedian Bob Hope is 99. Former Baseball Commissioner Fay Vincent is 64. Race car driver Al Unser Sr. is 63. Actor Kevin Conway is 60. Actor Helmut Berger is 58. Rock singer Gary Brooker (Procol Harum) is 57. Actor Anthony Geary is 55. Singer Rebbie Jackson is 52. Movie composer Danny Elfman is 49. Rock musician Michael Porcaro (Toto) is 47. Singer LaToya Jackson is 46. Actress Annette Bening is 44. Actor Rupert Everett is 43. Rock musician Mel Gaynor is 43. Actor Adrian Paul is 43. Singer Melissa Etheridge is 41. Actress Lisa Whelchel is 39. Actress Tracey Bregman is 39. Rock musician Noel Gallagher (Oasis) is 35. Singer Jayski McGowan (Quad City DJ’s) is 35. Rock musician Chad Kinchla (Blues Traveler) is 33. Singer Melanie Brown (Spice Girls) is 27. Rapper Playa Poncho is 27.

Center for developmentally disabled celebrates 30 years

By David Scharfenberg, Daily Planet staff
Wednesday May 29, 2002

Amy Chun, who has Down syndrome, often feels isolated at Albany Middle School.  

But her mother, Joanne Chun, said things are different at the Ala Costa Center — a 30-year-old after school program for the developmentally disabled on Rose Street in Berkeley. 

“It is a place where she is understood,” said Chun. “People get her.” 

The center, founded by a group of Berkeley parents in 1972, serves 50 children ages 5 to 22 from Berkeley, Oakland, Albany, El Cerrito and Emeryville. A new Ala Costa program, slated to open in Oakland in September, will serve 15 young people at first, eventually expanding to 35. 

The program is divided into four classrooms, separated by age and skill level, and provides a wide range of activities suited to student needs. Fourteen- to 18 year-old kids in the “Voyager” classroom, for instance, go over the signs they might see in the community and learn how to turn away strangers who might try to take advantage of them. 

But the center also provides the bread and butter of any after school program — art classes, basketball games and talent shows. 

“The bottom-line belief is that our kids shouldn’t be separated from society,” said Executive Director Holly Gold. “They should be able to experience everything that other kids experience.” 

Gold said the center works hard to ensure “community integration,” taking students to movies and museums, riding the train and sending them to play with other kids in the public playground adjacent to the center. 

Site supervisor Jorge Belloso-Curiel said Ala Costa teachers work to integrate important lessons on the trips — how to interact properly with a storeowner or carefully cross the street. 

“Some of our kids do act inappropriately, and that’s why they’re here,” he said. 

But perhaps the most important thing the center provides is a sense of community and belonging. 

“If they didn’t come here, they wouldn’t have any friends,” Gold said. “They’ve never been invited to a birthday party. They’ve never had a boyfriend or girlfriend.” 

Margie Chambers, lead teacher in the Voyagers classroom, said many of her students who are too sick to go to school on a given day insist on going to Ala Costa in the afternoon to plug into the social network.  

Gold, who has a background in drug treatment and HIV/AIDS work, took the reins of Ala Costa in March 2000. 

“The program was really great, but there was an opportunity for growth,” she said. 

Gold worked on some of the details, including putting pictures on the wall, updating the computer and telephone systems and creating a Web site and brochure. She also created the site supervisor position so she could focus on the big picture as well. 

The major focus has been the new center, which will be housed in a set of portable classrooms outside Thurgood Marshall Elementary School near Oakland International Airport. 

“It’s been a dream for who knows how many years,” Gold said. “We’ve always had a huge waiting list.” 

Gold said she hopes Oakland will “follow the city of Berkeley’s lead” when the center opens. Berkeley provides generous financial support for Ala Costa, renting the center its building for a nominal fee and providing the program an annual grant of $30,000. 

Ala Costa’s overall budget is $500,000 to $600,000 a year and will expand to $1 million when the new facility opens, Gold said. The state provides most of the center’s funding through the Regional Center of the East Bay and the Department of Education’s Child Development Division.  

Gold said she hopes to build private fund raising as well. A walkathon is scheduled for June 19 and a 30th anniversary fund-raising celebration is slated for January. 

The center’s long-term goal is to see after school programs for the developmentally disabled nationwide. That growth is long overdue, Gold said. 

“In a way it’s nothing special,” Gold said, describing the model. “It’s an after school program that’s designed to work for kids who need a lot of care.”

Jury nears Earth First! verdict

The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

OAKLAND — Jurors may have reached a partial verdict in the federal case against police and FBI agents accused of framing two Earth First! activists. 

Darryl Cherney and Judi Bari were injured when a bomb exploded in their Subaru while they were driving in Oakland in May 1990. Bari, who was at the wheel, suffered a crushed pelvis. 

The two were arrested within hours, but the case fell apart weeks later when prosecutors said there wasn’t enough evidence to bring charges. Cherney and Bari sued investigators for false arrest, illegal search, slanderous statements and conspiracy. They claimed officials ignored evidence exonerating the activists and lied to try to make their case. 


Father of teen accused of killing four in Isla Vista testifies

The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SANTA BARBARA — The father of a former college student on trial for running down four people with his car testified Tuesday that he couldn’t accept repeated diagnoses that his son was mentally ill. 

Daniel Attias, an Emmy-nominated television director, said he and his wife struggled with their son’s emotional and behavioral problems for years and did not want the youth saddled with the stigma of being mentally ill. 

David Attias, 20, is on trial for four counts each of murder and manslaughter, plus one count of driving under the influence of drugs for the Feb. 23, 2001, crash that killed four people and injured a fifth. 

Authorities say Attias raced his car down a crowded Isla Vista street near the University of California, Santa Barbara, and plowed into the five pedestrians. Attias allegedly got out of the vehicle after striking the pedestrians and shouted that he was the “angel of death.” 

Those killed were Nicholas Bourdakis, 20; Christopher Divis, 20; Ruth Levy, 20; and her friend Elie Israel, 27. Levy’s brother, Albert Levy, 27, survived. 

Attias’ father testified that he took measures to ensure that no “paper trail” would exist of diagnoses from doctors who said his son had attention deficit disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and that he could be bipolar. 

“I’ve always been fearful of labels,” said Daniel Attias, 50, who has directed episodes of “Ally McBeal” and “The Sopranos.” “I didn’t want him to stop being seen as David.” 

Attias’ mother testified last week that her son was a “weirdo” and described how his behavior had changed once he enrolled at UCSB and stopped going to therapy and taking his medication. 

Attias’ father said his son’s condition also deteriorated as he experimented with illegal drugs. 

On winter break two months before the crash, David Attias verbally lashed out at his father for trying to set a 2:45 a.m. curfew on his son’s nightly attendance at Los Angeles raves. 

“His reaction was unlike anything I had ever seen,” his father testified. “It was full-blown megalomania . . . it was the first time I truly understood his diagnosis of bipolar disorder.” 

Attias’ defense attorneys, Jack Earley and Nancy Haydt, have entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity, which puts Attias’ mental status at the heart of the trial. The jury can only consider the mental illness to help determine his guilt. If convicted, the trial will move to a sanity phase and the panel will decide whether he was insane at the time of the crime. 

CBS Television City employees evacuated after gunman enters complex

The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Employees at the CBS television complex were safely evacuated Tuesday as police negotiated with a gunman threatening suicide. 

Officers received reports about 5 p.m. of a gunman inside the complex, said Officer Jason Lee, a police spokesman. It was later determined that a possibly suicidal man had barricaded himself inside an office, Lee said. 

“Everybody is out, he’s the only guy in there,” Lee said. “There are no hostages and no shots have been fired.” 

Dozens of employees congregated in the CBS Television City parking lot as police officers entered the complex where “The Price is Right” and other shows are filmed. The man was reportedly armed with a gun, but the weapon could be a BB-gun or a toy replica, Lee said. The Police Department dispatched its SWAT team to the television complex, located in the city’s Fairfax District. The man was lying on the floor with a gun to his head and threatening suicide, Deputy Chief David Kalish said.  




Riders jury selection begins

Daily Planet Wire Service
Wednesday May 29, 2002

OAKLAND — Defense attorneys and Alameda County prosecutors today are scheduled to begin their search for a jury that will sit in what is believed to be the largest case of alleged criminal police misconduct in Oakland's history. 

Jude Siapno, Clarence Mabanag and Matthew Hornung are accused of conspiring to beat suspects, falsify evidence and other acts as they patrolled West Oakland late at night in what come to be known as the "Riders'' case. 

The officers have pleaded not guilty to all of the charges, and their attorneys have said in court that the officers were only following orders from police officials that they should be tough on drugs. 

Earlier this year, defense attorneys tried unsuccessfully to have the proceedings moved outside of Oakland, arguing that the extensive pretrial media coverage that the case received will make it impossible to get an impartial panel of jurors. They indicated that they may try to get the case moved out of Alameda County again during the jury selection process. 

The suspected ringleader of the "Riders,'' Frank Vazquez, fled  

soon after the case broke and remains at large.

SF considers $3.6 billion to fix area water system

By Olga R. Rodriguez, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

xSAN FRANCISCO — City utility officials approved a proposal Tuesday that could put a $3.6 billion bond measure to upgrade the aging Hetch Hetchy water system on the November ballot. 

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission’s proposal calls for renovations and seismic upgrades of the city’s water system that runs more than 160 miles from Yosemite National Park to the Bay Area and is about a century old. 

The commission has delayed a $4 billion overhaul of the system for more than a decade. An upgrade could prevent aqueducts from collapsing in a major earthquake. That would leave several San Francisco Bay area cities without their main source of water for up to two months, according to scientists. 

“This has been in the works for many, many years,” said commission president Ann Moller Caen. “We have reached a point where the commission feels very confident.” 

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors and Mayor Willie Brown would still have to approve the measure by the end of June for it to appear on the ballot. 

The system’s infrastructure is in serious disrepair and susceptible to failure in a major earthquake, according to the commission. Its pipes and tunnels cross three major earthquake faults — the San Andreas, Hayward and Calaveras lines. 

The system delivers water to 770,000 people in San Francisco and to 29 suburban wholesale outfits which in turn serve about 1.7 million people in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Alameda counties. Seventy percent of Hetch Hetchy’s users don’t live in San Francisco, but in outlying cities such as Palo Alto, Mountain View, Redwood City, Fremont and parts of San Jose. 

The water system, however, is owned and administered by San Francisco. 

Under the proposal, the $3.6 billion tab would be paid through a series of water rate increases charged to the system’s 2.4 million customers. If approved, the average four-person household in San Francisco would see its monthly water bill more than triple from an average of $13 to nearly $44 by 2015. Suburban rates would rise to an estimated $80 from $38 today.

Assembly votes to force schools to reduce backpack weight

By Stefanie Frith, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — Concerned that students who lug heavy backpacks will develop spinal problems, the state Assembly approved a bill Tuesday that would force school boards to figure out ways to reduce excess backpack weight. 

The Assembly voted 71-1 to approve AB 2532, sending it to the Senate. 

The bill by Assemblyman Rod Pacheco, R-Riverside, and Sen. Jackie Speier, D-Daly City, would require school boards to develop and distribute a voluntary survey to school districts to find creative, cost-effective options to reduce excess backpack weight. 

The bill was amended to no longer include requirements for schools to adopt a maximum weight standard for textbooks. 

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, backpack-related injuries send almost 5,000 students each year to emergency rooms nationwide. 

Concerns about drugs and guns possibly hidden in student lockers have led many California schools to remove the lockers during the last decade. 

Some school districts have started to tackle the problem by deciding which nights to assign certain homework. Other schools have been able to purchase two sets of books for their students. One set is left at home, the other in the classrooms. 

Assemblyman Dario Frommer, D-Los Angeles, said the bill is not about giving less homework, just making sure that children are not carrying more weight than they can handle. 

“Doing homework should not be hazardous to your health,” he said. 

Children are often carrying 25 percent of their weight on their backs, said Pacheco. 

“Ninety pound children are carrying 40-pound backpacks,” Pacheco said. “These burdens are creating severe medical difficulties.” 

The California Medical Association and the California Physical Therapists Association support the bill because childhood is a key time for spinal growth, which could be altered by carrying heavy backpacks. 

The CPTA also said that it is seeing abnormal growth patterns in children’s collarbones caused by too much weight on their shoulders and backs. 


On the Net: 

Read the bill, AB 2532, at www.assembly.ca.gov 

Lawmakers to fill $1 billion budget gap

By Alexa Haussler, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A preliminary budget plan that restores some health care cuts proposed by Gov. Gray Davis but still leaves lawmakers the chore of filling a $1 billion gap stalled at least briefly Tuesday in the Senate. 

The measure fell five votes short of the two-thirds majority needed for approval on a first roll call, but Democratic leaders delayed announcing a final vote as senators worked through the afternoon on other bills. 

The vote was among a series of legislative tests faced by the budget blueprint proposed by Davis that combines tax increases, program cuts and heavy borrowing to try to fill a $23.6 billion budget hole. 

The Senate’s version of the budget passed through the Senate budget committee earlier in the day with a sprinkling of objections — small rumbles of larger battles to come. Republicans have said they will not support a plan that raises taxes. The Assembly’s budget committee also approved a draft of the budget Tuesday and the full Assembly was expected to vote on it Thursday. 

Tuesday’s work by the committees is considered “the easy part,” said Senate budget chairman Steve Peace, D-El Cajon. 

Once each house approves its version of the budget, a two-house, six-member conference committee will try to put together a compromise that can reach Davis’ desk. 

Davis proposed a $98.9 billion spending plan that uses tax increases, borrowing and $7.6 billion in program cuts to fill the expected shortfall. Health programs and county governments would bear the brunt of the cuts. 

The plan would raise taxes on cigarettes and car registrations and would suspend a program that allows businesses to deduct losses from their income taxes. It also would shift more than $1 billion from current year spending to the next fiscal year to avoid suspending state education spending requirements. 

“Above all else, this budget is faithful to public education in this state,” said Sen. Jack O’Connell, D-Santa Barbara. 

Republicans, however criticized the plan, blaming the Legislature’s Democratic majorities and Davis for mismanaging the state’s finances during a fiscal boom and causing the current crisis. 

“If you spend every dollar that comes in during the good years, you are going to be in big trouble in the bad years,” said Sen. Tom McClintock, R-Northridge. 

Although Democrats control both chambers of the Legislature, they need the votes of at least four GOP Assembly members and one Republican state senator to approve the budget by the required two-thirds vote. 

Once approved by lawmakers, the budget goes to Davis for his signature and for “blue-pencil” vetoes that remove certain items from the budget. Last year, Davis vetoed about $600 million in spending. 


On the Net: 

The Davis budget plan can be found at http://www.dof.ca.gov 

Panel chairman unhappy with Davis’ reply

By Steve Lawrence, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — Despite its claims of full compliance, the governor’s office apparently didn’t completely respond to a request for information from a committee investigating a potentially costly state contract, the panel’s chairman said Tuesday. 

“His response did not meet the threshold test of providing the committee what it needed,” said Assemblyman Dean Florez, D-Shafter. 

But Gov. Gray Davis’ chief spokesman, Steve Maviglio, said the governor’s office had fully complied with the committee’s request to the best of its ability. 

“A lot of the information requested we don’t have,” he said. “The attorney general’s office seized computers and so we don’t have e-mails and calendars from ... people whose computers were seized. 

“In some instances they did not specifically ask for something so we didn’t give it to them.” 

Davis’ legal affairs secretary, Barry Goode, said the governor’s office didn’t turn over some material relating to discussions and meetings that took place after the contract was signed last May 31. 

“Certain matters after that date are related to the ongoing negotiations with Oracle” Corp. to rescind the contract, Goode said. “We are in active discussions with respect to them and they are covered by the deliberative process privilege.” 

Davis’ office turned over 46 pages of information to the Joint Legislative Audit Committee last Friday afternoon. 

, saying it fully complied with a request for any records it had about a contract with Oracle. 

The $95-million, no-bid deal was supposed to save the state as much as $111 million through volume purchases and maintenance of computer database software. 

But the state auditor said last month that the contract could end up costing the state up to $41 million more than if it had maintained its previous software supply arrangements, a conclusion Oracle disputes. 

Besides the committee, the attorney general’s office is also investigating the deal. 

Florez sent a letter to Goode on May 13 asking for copies of any communications or documents relating to the Oracle deal, including any communications Davis had with Oracle representatives. 

The governor has denied any knowledge of the agreement before it was signed, and his office says there are no documents contradicting that statement. 

Most of the 46 pages that Davis’ office gave to the committee consisted of background information provided by Logicon Inc., an Oracle vendor, about the type of agreement signed by the state. 

The Davis material also included handwritten notes from a meeting that Davis aide Kari Dohn had last May with Logicon representatives and a copy of the memo, known as a governor’s action request, that was signed by several administration officials in support of the deal. 

Both Florez and another committee member, Assemblyman Bill Leonard, R-Rancho Cucamonga, said there was little new information in the material the governor provided. 

“They gave us 46 pages,” said Florez. “Of the 46, 43 was stuff we already had.” 

Leonard said Davis’ response “makes me wonder if there’s a policy in the governor’s office to not document actions, meetings and other kinds of activity.” 

Florez send another letter to Goode on Tuesday requesting calendar entries, meeting notes, phone logs, e-mails and other communications relating to the Oracle pact by this Thursday. 

“My initial review...indicates that the May 24, 2002 response from the governor’s office does not appear to fully comply with the document request,” Florez said. 

For example, Florez said, the governor’s initial response didn’t include calendar entries or notes for meetings involving the governor’s aides that the committee has had testimony about. 

The initial response also didn’t include any phone logs of telephone conversations about the agreement, even though the committee has had documents or testimony about such discussions, Florez added. 

“The response leaves unanswered whether the governor’s office maintains no such records or whether these records were not provided,” his letter said. 

Maviglio said only Davis and his chief of staff, Lynn Schenk, keep phone logs. 

Existing home sales, prices hit new records

By Gary Gentile The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Existing single family homes sold at a sizzling pace and at record prices in April, according to the California Association of Realtors. 

For the second straight month, the median price of an existing single family home was above $300,000, a situation that, combined with a dwindling inventory, is pricing many buyers out of the market. 

Sales of existing homes increased 29.8 percent in April compared with the same period last year and 9.7 percent from last month, according to seasonally adjusted figures obtained from Realtor associations throughout California. 

The median price of a California home was $321,950 in April, a 26.1 percent jump from April 2001. 

“With only a two-month supply of homes for sale throughout the state, there simply isn’t enough inventory available to meet the demand for homes,” said CAR President Robert Bailey. 

The crunch was predictably higher in the San Francisco Bay area, where sales shot up 73 percent in April compared with a year ago. In Santa Clara County, home to Silicon Valley, sales surged nearly 120 percent in April. 

Monday, another real estate tracking agency reported that a mid-priced home in the San Francisco Bay area sold for $402,000 in April — topping the previous peak of $386,000 in March 2001 

Southern California prices also climbed to a new high, hitting a mid-range of $258,000 — up $1,000 from the high established in the previous month, according to monthly statistics compiled by DataQuick Information Systems. 

DataQuick’s survey is based on all home and condominium sales, including the sale of new homes, recorded by county recorders. 

The summer will bring no relief for struggling home buyers, CAR reported. 

“Low inventory, favorable mortgage interest rates and rapidly rising home price appreciation will continue to intensify the pace of home sales in the coming months, said CAR chief economist Leslie Appleton-Young. 

As buyers were priced out of many markets throughout the state, prices began to show huge spikes in historically more affordable areas such as Culver City, South Pasadena and Twenty-nine Palms, the report showed. 

“It’s a classic case of too many buyers,” said Art Perez, an associate at Cavanaugh Realtors in Culver City. “You had better be ready to pay full price for something that day because if you wait two or three days it might be sold.” 

Perez said spiraling prices are making it especially difficult for renters seeking to enter the home market. 

“The rent prices have gone up so much, that has pushed everything else up,” he said. “Now a condo that used to be $90,000 is $160,000. You used to be able to come into Culver City and buy a cute little house for $300,000. Now it’s $400,000. It’s a very freaky time.” 

Even buyers willing to pay full price are finding it tough to close sales as sellers hold out for buyers with large down payments, said Tom Rosas, an agent at Century 21 Grisham-Joseph in Whittier. 

“The market is so strong, they know they can wait for a 20 percent down buyer and get one,” Rosas said. 

CAR reported a two-month inventory of unsold detached single family homes in April, half the number for April 2001.

Andersen exec defends Andersen lawyer maligned by prosecutors

By Mark Babineck, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

HOUSTON – After prosecutors spent three weeks quizzing a witness list packed with Arthur Andersen LLP employees as the government tried to prove obstruction of justice against the accounting firm, the defense has fired back with one of its own. 

Richard Corgel, a high-level executive based in the firm’s Los Angeles office, testified Monday that an Oct. 12 e-mail sent by in-house attorney Nancy Temple was not a tacit order to destroy documents — as prosecutors contend — but instead a routine housekeeping reminder. 

Corgel also defended Temple, whom prosecutors have labeled publicly their No. 1 witness to document destruction at Andersen last autumn as the Securities and Exchange Commission was gearing up an investigation into client Enron Corp. 

“She wanted to do what was right from a professional perspective, what was right from a document retention perspective,” said Corgel, who served with Temple and three others on an Andersen team dispatched in late October and early November to sort through auditing problems on the Enron account. 

Corgel also told the 16 members of the jury panel that he never saw or heard anyone order destruction of documents, and that he would have questioned someone who made such an order. 

Corgel was the first witness called by Andersen’s lawyers after prosecutors called 19 during the first three weeks of the plodding trial, including Temple and two others who refused to testify. The government’s last witness was FBI special agent Paula Schanzle, who endured a series of bruising questions during lead defense attorney Rusty Hardin’s cross-examination. 

Hardin got Schanzle to admit Monday she had not gone through all 29,250 deleted e-mails that had been reconstructed by Andersen, even though she told a grand jury a “vast majority” dealt with Enron. Defense attorneys contend she lied after their count determined only about one-third of the e-mails were related to Enron. 

Schanzle also was forced to identify six copies of a particular e-mail that had been saved by different Andersen employees after testifying Friday about another copy that had been deleted. One juror smiled broadly as Hardin kept presenting copy after copy that survived. 

“Ms. Schanzle, would you agree if there was any attempt to keep this information from the government, (Andersen is) not very good at it?” Hardin quipped. 

Schanzle, released from the stand midday Monday after taking her oath Friday, walked briskly out of the courtroom after Hardin had finished her off with an unusually loud “No more questions.” 

Prosecutors rested their case soon after the exchange. Hardin said he could call as many as 11 more witnesses after Corgel and expected to take the rest of the week laying out the firm’s case. 

“Mr. Corgel is out there to paint the face of the company and how things work (there),” Hardin told reporters.

Excite@Home to auction off its remains

The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — Bankrupt Excite@Home will auction off the last pieces of its defunct high-speed Internet access service Wednesday, putting the finishing touches on a fire sale that has extracted about $60 million from a business valued at $28 billion three years ago. 

The public auction, to be held at Excite@Home’s Redwood City headquarters, will close another chapter in one of the most exasperating failures during the dot-com bust. 

But it won’t end the strife stirred up by Excite@Home’s bankruptcy filing eight months ago. 

The company’s investors plan to pursue lawsuits blaming Excite@Home’s demise on the alleged misdeeds of its former cable partners, chiefly AT&T, Comcast and Cox Communications. The damages could run as high as $9 billion, according to a group of about 200 Excite@Home shareholders fighting to become the lead representatives in a class-action securities suit filed in a New York federal court.

Chandra Levy’s death a homicide, but little evidence exists

By Mark Sherman, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

WASHINGTON — Someone killed Chandra Levy, but there’s too little evidence to say how or who might have left her body on a rugged park hillside a year ago, Washington’s medical examiner said Tuesday. 

Six days after the 24-year old former intern’s remains were found in sprawling Rock Creek Park, Dr. Jonathan Arden ruled the death a homicide but said the exact cause may never be known. 

Washington Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey emphatically said his investigators, who have been baffled by Levy’s disappearance for nearly 13 months, will find the killer. “We will solve this case, I guarantee you that,” Ramsey said at a news conference outside police headquarters. 

Three thousand miles away, more than 1,000 mourners joined Levy’s parents at a memorial for the former U.S. Bureau of Prisons intern in her hometown of Modesto, Calif. 

“Somebody went to extraordinary means to conceal Chandra’s body,” Billy Martin, the Levy family attorney, said after the service. “We hope that this case will not go unsolved.” 

Arden said he did not have enough evidence to say conclusively how Levy died, or whether she was killed where the remains were found. 

“However, the circumstances of her disappearance and her body on recovery are indicative that she died through the acts of another person, which is the definition of a homicidal manner of death,” Arden said. 

Later, in a telephone interview, he said Levy’s skull, which police reported was damaged, was fractured after she died. Among other potential causes of death, Arden said, “I did not see the evidence of a gunshot, stab wound or beating.” 

Other medical examiners said those telltale signs makes strangulation a more likely cause of death. Arden said strangulation is difficult to diagnose when examining only bones. 

The announcement “was pretty much what we expected,” said Channing Phillips, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office, which is part of the investigation team. 

Among the hypotheses police are considering is that Levy was killed elsewhere and her body was dumped down the steep hill not far from a picnic and parking area, a law enforcement source said. Police have scoured the Grove 17 picnic area for clues.

Texas inmate executed by injection for murder he committed at age 17 years old

By Michael Graczyk, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

HUNTSVILLE, Texas — Napoleon Beazley, whose death sentence for a murder committed at 17 stirred national debate over capital punishment for youths, was executed Tuesday after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to spare his life. 

When asked by the warden if he had a final statement, Beazley looked toward Suzanne Luttig, the daughter of the victim, and said “no” before he was given a lethal injection. 

Beazley was convicted of killing the father of a federal judge during a 1994 carjacking. He repeatedly expressed remorse for shooting John Luttig, 63, while trying to steal the man’s Mercedes. 

“It’s my fault,” Beazley, 25, said during a hearing last month. “I violated the law. I violated this city, and I violated a family — all to satisfy my own misguided emotions. I’m sorry. I wish I had a second chance to make up for it, but I don’t.” 

Texas is one of five states that allow the death penalty for crimes committed by 17-year-olds. 

Before Tuesday, 18 inmates in the United States — including 10 in Texas — had been executed since 1976 for a murder committed when the killer was younger than 18. 

“Texas must recognize that the brutal practice of executing children is in complete and utter defiance of international law,” said Sue Gunawardena-Vaught, director of Amnesty International USA’s Program to Abolish the Death Penalty. 

In Austin, about 100 death penalty opponents rallied at the governor’s mansion to protest Beazley’s execution. 

Earlier Tuesday, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles voted 10-7 against recommending that Beazley’s sentence be commuted to life in prison and 13-4 against a reprieve.

Crew members said they heard no alarm before barge crashed into bridge; toll rises to 13

By Clayton Bellamy The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

WEBBERS FALLS, Okla. — Rescuers hoisted two vehicles with four bodies inside from the murky Arkansas River on Tuesday, bringing the death toll from the collapse of an interstate bridge to 13. 

Lightning, rain and rising waters hampered the rescuers, who picked their way through the muddy water searching for an unknown number of people still missing after an out-of-control barge hit the Interstate 40 bridge and knocked out a 500-foot section of highway. 

“We’re determined because we know there’s family members out there wondering if one of their own is in here,” said Dennis Splawn, a diver with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. 

The bodies of seven women and six men have been recovered from the waters below the ridge, said highway patrol Lt. Chris West. With the help of sonar, a crane had hoisted 10 vehicles from the pile of mangled concrete and twisted steel. 

A champion horse trainer and a police detective were among those killed, authorities said. 

About 10 families of people trapped in cars at the bottom of the river waited at the Webbers Falls City Hall for news. About a dozen vehicles plummeted into the water Sunday morning after the barge hit. 

Earlier Tuesday, an investigator said towboat crew members’ accounts support the towboat company’s contention that the pilot had blacked out. 

George Black of the National Transportation Safety Board said a crewman who visited with captain Joe Dedmon five to 10 minutes before the accident said everything seemed normal. 

Others who were not with the captain said they heard no alarm or change in the sound of the engine that would indicate he was trying to avoid a crash, Black said.

Talks between India, Pakistan unlikely after rhetoric

By Beth Duff-Brown, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

NEW DELHI, India — India sharply criticized a speech by Pakistan’s military leader as “disappointing and dangerous” on Tuesday and asserted that al-Qaida terrorists now are in disputed Kashmir. 

The nuclear-armed South Asian rivals also cranked up their war rhetoric after Pakistan test-fired another missile capable of carrying nuclear warheads into India. The HatfII, or Abdali, missile was the third such missile tested by Pakistan since Saturday. 

Despite international pressure, India said Tuesday it was unlikely that Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee would hold peace talks with President Gen. Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan. 

“You cannot put a pistol of terrorism to my temple with the finger on the trigger and say, ’Dialogue with me, or I will release this trigger of terrorism,”’ Indian Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh said. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin offered to bring Vajpayee and Musharraf together during an Asian summit in Kazakhstan next week. Pakistan has accepted, but Singh reiterated India would not resume dialogue until Pakistan stopped attacks in India-controlled Kashmir by Pakistan-based Islamic militants. 

Also Tuesday, India’s defense minister said fighters from Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaida network and from Afghanistan’s former ruling Taliban are in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir. 

“We have information that the number of terrorists who are on the other side of the border ... (are) people who have fled from Afghanistan, al-Qaida men and Talibanis,” Defense Minister George Fernandes told Star News Television. 

Singh also warned that American forces in the region were not a deterrent to a possible strike on Pakistan. 

“The physical presence of U.S. troops in certain parts of Pakistan is clearly known to us ... and it is not an inhibiting factor in policy determination,” he said. 

Singh also restated India’s policy that it would not strike first with nuclear weapons if a war should erupt. “India has not ever spoken of nuclear weapons,” he said. 

In Washington, the U.S. military was worried that the dispute could interfere with its search for al-Qaida fighters, a Pentagon spokeswoman said. A senior defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said there are signs Pakistani troops are preparing to move toward Kashmir from the Pakistan-Afghan border, where they are helping with the search. 

After a NATO luncheon in Italy, Secretary-General Lord Robertson said President Bush, Putin and 18 other alliance leaders “share a deep common concern” and urged India and Pakistan “to de-escalate and resume talking together.”

Infiltrator kills three Israelis at Orthodox Jewish high school

By Mark Lavie, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

JERUSALEM — A gunman sneaked onto the grounds of an Orthodox Jewish high school in the West Bank late Tuesday and killed three teen-agers, even as Israeli troops continued their daily raids into Palestinian towns. 

The man shot and killed three Israeli students outside a high school in the settlement of Itamar, near the Palestinian city of Nablus, settlers and rescue service officials said. The attacker was shot and killed by the settlement’s security chief. 

Hezi Katoa, a rescue service worker, told Israel Radio that they found one student hit by a number of bullets in the chest, and then two more “lying behind the building with bullet wounds all over their bodies.” All three were dead at the scene, he said. 

A few hours earlier, an Israeli motorist was killed and another wounded in a shooting attack, apparently by a Palestinian gunman, near the Jewish settlement of Ofra, said rescue services spokesman Yeruham Mandola. 

The violence accompanied repeated Israeli incursions into Palestinian towns in the West Bank. 

Late Tuesday, Israeli soldiers entered Beitunia, a suburb of the West Bank town of Ramallah, Palestinians said, and surrounded the house of a prominent Hamas leader. However, the leader, Hassan Yussuf, was not there. The Israeli military had no comment. 

In another development, Israel launched the spy satellite Ofek-5, displaying advanced missile capabilities and restoring a military eye in the sky after its last spy satellite burned up in the atmosphere about a year ago. 

Defense Ministry spokesman Yarden Vatikay confirmed it was sent into space from a seaside Israeli air force base. It was launched by a Shavit missile, related to the long-range Jericho ground-to-ground missile. Foreign experts have said the Jericho can carry a nuclear warhead; Israeli officials have not commented on that. 

Israel’s latest sweep in the West Bank came after a Palestinian blew himself up outside an ice cream parlor and cafe crowded with women and children in a Tel Aviv suburb Monday, killing Ruth Peled, 56, and her 18-month-old granddaughter, Sinai Kenaan. 

The Al Aqsa Brigades, linked to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s Fatah movement, claimed responsibility and identified the bomber as Jihad Titi, 18, a cousin of a leading Al Aqsa militant Mahmoud Titi, who was killed in an Israeli tank attack last week. 

On Tuesday, troops in armored personnel carriers and jeeps drove into Jenin and a nearby refugee camp at about 3 a.m. and left by midday. They arrested eight, including the local leader of the Islamic militant group Hamas, Rami Awad. Soldiers also searched an Islamic school, seizing computer disks, residents said. 

There were heavy exchanges of fire with Palestinian gunmen. 

In one incident, a 55-year-old Palestinian civilian, who had come out of his home to watch the fighting, was shot in the leg before dawn Tuesday, witnesses said. Israeli troops opened fire on an ambulance trying to retrieve the wounded man, witnesses said; the army said it was checking that report. 

“We couldn’t bring him to the hospital until 8 a.m. and by then he was already dead,” said Ibrahim Dabaneh, director of emergency services in the city. 

In one deserted neighborhood, the sound of a Palestinian gunman’s Kalashnikov assault rifle echoed through the streets as Israeli armored vehicles fired heavy-caliber mounted machine guns toward the source of fire, and soldiers dashed across open ground toward the cover of an empty building. 

In its stairwell, about a dozen soldiers lay down and went to sleep. They had been up all night, waiting for order to enter Jenin, whose refugee camp was the scene of some of the bloodiest battles in Israel’s six-week West Bank offensive, Operation Defensive Shield, that ended earlier this month. 

In Bethlehem to the south, Israeli forces combed the town for the third straight day Tuesday, blocking off the Church of the Nativity to prevent gunmen from taking refuge there. During Israel’s earlier offensive, several dozen gunmen ran into the church ahead of Israeli forces, setting off a 39-day standoff that ended with the deportation of 13 of the militants. 

On Tuesday, Israeli forces arrested four Palestinians and discovered a bomb and some weapons in the Dheisheh refugee camp next to Bethlehem, Palestinian security officials said. 

The Israeli incursions have become an almost nightly occurrence. With the exception of the extended operation in Bethlehem, they usually last a few hours, resulting in the arrests of suspected militants. 

Deputy Israeli Defense Minister Dalia Rabin-Pelossof admitted Tuesday that despite the arrest of thousands of suspected militants and the killing of dozens of wanted men, Operation Defensive Shield did not succeed in ending the militants’ ability to stage attacks. 

“We know now that there is nothing easier than to take a person bent on suicide and attach a bomb to him,” she told Israel TV. 

She denied that the Israeli military’s frequent incursions into Palestinian territory are a precursor of another full-scale operation. 

She said the defense establishment has a plan for a security fence between Israel and the West Bank and that “there should be a fence in the most sensitive parts (of the border) in a matter of weeks.” 

The border between Israel and the West Bank is largely open to infiltration, and to date Israel has avoided erecting physical obstacles for fear this might weaken its claim to at least some of the territory before a negotiated settlement. A fence would also leave many Jewish settlers on the other side from Israel. 

Bush expresses concern to pope about priest scandal in America

By Ron Fournier, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

ROME — President Bush, in a one-on-one meeting inside the Vatican, told Pope John Paul II he is concerned about the Roman Catholic church’s standing in America where the church has been rocked by sex-abuse scandal. 

The frail 82-year-old pontiff reaffirmed “his faith in the spiritual resources of American Catholics,” a spokesman said, describing the leaders’ private discussion Tuesday. 

In a brief session before news cameras, John Paul labored to stand to bid Bush farewell with a quiet “God Bless America.” 

His parting words to the president: “I hope to be able to meet you again.” 

There have been reports that the ailing pope might consider resigning should his health worsen, although Vatican officials have denied that he has any such plans. 

Swiss Guards in red-plumed helmets stood at attention, with 15th-century halberds at their sides, as Bishop James Harvey, an American ordained in Milwaukee, escorted the president through Vatican corridors of marble. 

“I will tell him that I am concerned about the Catholic Church in America, I’m concerned about its standing,” Bush told reporters before the meeting. 

“I say that because the Catholic Church is an incredibly important institution in our country.” 

Indeed, Bush has assiduously courted Catholic support — often meeting with local bishops when he travels outside Washington, inviting members of the church hierarchy to the White House — after splitting Catholic voters with Democrat Al Gore in the 2000 election. 

Roman Catholic voters are highly sought after because they tend to switch party allegiances from election to election depending on the candidate, and they often can tip the balance at the ballot box. 

Polls show Americans are disappointed by the church’s handling of accusations of sexual abuse of children by priests. 

Bush’s comments were his first on the scandal since March, when he said he was confident the church would “clean up its business.” 

At that time, he backed embattled Cardinal Bernard Law of Boston, who has become a lightning rod for criticism since. “I respect him a lot,” Bush said in March, shortly after Law gave prosecutors the names of at least 80 priests accused of sexually abusing children. 

The president had no public comment after his meeting with John Paul, but White House press secretary Ari Fleischer confirmed that Bush delivered the message of concern as he said he would. 

Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls said the pope, in turn, “wanted to express, despite difficulty of the moment, his faith in the spiritual resources of American Catholics committed to bear witness to the values of the Gospel in society.” 

Bush, in Rome for a NATO-Russia meeting earlier in the day, described John Paul as “a man of enormous dignity and compassion.” 

He presented the pope with a hand-painted silver medallion of the Madonna. John Paul gave Bush a pink coral statue of the Madonna and child. 

In the noisy clatter of camera shutters that accompanied their greeting, John Paul jokingly raised his hands to cover his ears and the president teased him: “They’ll make you look good, your Holy Father.” 

They briefly discussed the pope’s recent trip to Azerbaijan and Bulgaria. Behind closed doors, their discussion also included Russia and violence in the Middle East, Fleischer said. 

The visit was Bush’s last stop on a weeklong tour through Europe and Russia. He arrived at the White House on Tuesday evening and appeared happy to be home, scratching his two dogs, Spot and Barney, when they ran outside to greet him. 

Libya offers $10 million per family in Pan Am bombing

By George Gedda, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

WASHINGTON — Libya has offered to pay $10 million per family as compensation for the deaths of 270 people in the 1988 Pan Am 103 bombing, lawyers representing the family said Tuesday. 

They said the Libyan offer was a “vast multiple” of settlements paid in any other aviation or terrorism case. 

At $10 million per family, the combined compensation would come to $2.7 billion. Of the 270 victims, 181 were Americans. 

The lawyers have been negotiating with the Libyans for years, with a view toward reaching a settlement that would permit the lifting of both U.N. Security Council and U.S. sanctions against Libya. 

The State Department has not been involved in the negotiations. A senior department official expressed doubt that the Bush administration would approve the arrangement. 

The New York-based Kriendler & Kriendler law firm, discussing the case publicly for the first time, outlined the status of the negotiations in a five-page letter to family members. Copies were made available to the news media. 

Under the agreement, the money would be placed in escrow and released piecemeal as the sanctions against Libya are revoked: 40 percent when U.N. sanctions were lifted, 40 percent with removal of U.S. commercial sanctions and 20 per cent when Libya was removed from the State Department’s list of sponsors of international terrorism. 

In England, the Rev. John Mosey, who lost his 19-year-old daughter, Helga, in the attack, said the money would go some way toward “lightening the burden” of his family’s loss. Mosey said, however, he would believe the money was forthcoming only when he saw a check, and in any case it would not deter the families from pressing their long-held demand for an independent inquiry.

Russia becomes limited partner in NATO in historic accord

By Ron Fournier, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

ROME — NATO declared Russia a limited partner in the Western alliance Tuesday, embracing its former Cold War enemy as an ally in the battle against modern-day threats like terrorism. 

“Two former foes are now joined as partners, overcoming 50 years of division and a decade of uncertainty,” President Bush said as leaders of NATO’s 19 member-nations gathered with Russia to form the NATO-Russia Council. 

The arrangement gives Russia a voice — but not a veto — on a range of issues, including counterterrorism, the spread of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, missile defense, arms control, peacekeeping, civil defense and search-and-rescue at sea. 

“We have come a long way from confrontation to dialogue, and from confrontation to cooperation,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said. He called the agreement “only a beginning” and looked ahead to a greater role for Russia in NATO. 

The leaders sealed the agreement at the seaside Pratica di Mare air base. Italy deployed 15,000 security forces and mounted robust air and sea defenses to protect the 20 world leaders. Two Italian Tornado fighter jets escorted a Sudan Airways passenger jet out of Italian airspace after it failed to establish radio contact with air traffic controllers, an Italian military official said. 

NATO was founded in 1949 to contain communism and the Soviet Union. With the collapse of the Soviet empire, NATO has been reaching out to Russia.

Bill to stop use of American Indian mascot names thwarted

By Stefanie Frith, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — Public schools will be allowed to keep American Indian team names and mascots after the Assembly defeated a bill Tuesday that would have forced schools to give up the names. 

After hours of debate the bill, written by Assemblywoman Jackie Goldberg, D-Los Angeles, was defeated on a 35 to 29 vote. 

The measure would have required name changes at elementary, middle and high schools as well as community colleges and state universities. Schools on reservations would have been spared. 

Decisions are usually made by individual schools and critics said it should stay that way. 

“Is it the business of the state of California to take measures to ensure that no group is ever offended by the activities of another group?” asked Assemblyman Dick Dickerson, R-Redding. 

Supporters such as Goldberg said it is a question better resolved at the state level because Indian mascots promote a hostile learning environment, as well as gender and racial division. 

“Civil rights are not a matter of local control,” she said, “they are a matter of simple dignity.” 

Under the measure, about 100 California schools would have been forced to change names.  

Assemblyman David Cogdill, R-Modesto, said the bill should not have been brought before the Legislature. He said schools have long had Indian mascots and generations of students have been proud to identify with the names. 

“They have chosen to honor them,” he said. 

Senate approves bill to curb suburban sprawl

The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A bill that could give state government significant new power over how and where its cities grow has cleared the Senate. 

The measure would create a state growth blueprint within two years. The plan would reward cities and counties that conserve open space and develop more efficiently. 

The bill, authored by Sen. Sheila Kuehl, D-Santa Monica, would concentrate growth in urban areas. It would encourage local governments to build in existing cities, mix housing with offices and shops and build housing close to public transportation. 

Local governments that adopt such “smart growth” will be given preference when applying for state competitive grants used for transit, infrastructure and parks. 

The bill, SB 1521, is being pushed by Gov. Gray Davis. It cleared the Senate on a 22-12 vote and will go through the Assembly committees on Local Government and Appropriations before going to the Assembly floor. 

“This will hopefully help with better land use planning and bring housing closer to jobs,” Kuehl said before the Senate vote. “I prefer smart growth to dumb growth.” 

Builders, local municipalities and the real estate industry have barraged the bill with attacks, saying it would take control away from cities and counties. 

“This is called extortion and at best it’s bribery,” said opponent Sen. Ray Haynes, R-Riverside. “Smart growth is just another word for no growth or slow grow. It will just make it less affordable.” 


Senate votes to move state primary from March to August

By Steve Lawrence, The Associated Press
Wednesday May 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — Agreeing that California’s primary election is too early to attract many voters, the Senate on Tuesday approved a bill that would move the primary for state and congressional candidates from March to August. 

“Eight months between the primary election and the general election is just too long,” said Sen. Ross Johnson, R-Irvine. “Voters lose interest. Qualified candidates do not run for office.” 

Senators voted 26-4 to send the Assembly a bill by Johnson that would move the primary for state and congressional candidates from the first Tuesday in March to the first Tuesday after the first Monday in August. 

The presidential primary would remain on the first Tuesday in March, giving the state three statewide elections in presidential election years: the presidential primary in March, the state and congressional primary in August and the general election in November. 

California used to hold its primary election in June, but lawmakers voted to move the primary to March to assure that California voters had a role in picking presidential nominees. In most years, presidential nominations were wrapped up by the time Californians voted in June. 

Lawmakers decided to keep the primary in March even in non-presidential election years. That led to California having the earliest primary election in the nation this year and a record-low voter turnout of 34 percent. 

“Like a department store pushing Christmas items in April, the March primary did not attract very much interest,” Johnson said. “It was simply too early for most voters.” He said moving the primary closer to the general election would increase voter interest, help candidates recruit campaign volunteers and reduce fund-raising pressure on candidates. 

But Sen. Gloria Romero, D-Los Angeles, questioned whether moving the primary to August would boost voter turnout. “In August families pack up and they leave town,” she said. “I’m concerned this is going to diminish the vote. I agree that we have to change the date of the primary, but I’m not convinced that August is the way to go.” 



Police search for boy who vanished

The Associated Press
Tuesday June 04, 2002

LOS ANGELES – Police searched some of the most expensive real estate in the city Monday for a 7-year-old boy who vanished during a weekend birthday party in Westwood. 

Paolo Ayala disappeared from a home pool party in the tony residential area near Beverly Hills shortly before his parents arrived to pick him up at 5 p.m. Sunday, police said. 

The missing boy’s father, from Beverly Hills, said his son may have wandered to nearby Holmby Park. 

“He is very friendly,” said Franklin Ayala. 

He was last seen barefoot and shirtless, wearing only a pair of blue swimming trunks. 

Four separate teams of police dogs tracked the boy’s scent south after scouring the house and a nearby park and golf course, said police Sgt. John Pasquariello. The dogs picked up the scent about a mile from the home, Pasquariello said.

Some schools consider going organic

By Colleen Valles, The Associated Press
Monday June 03, 2002

PALO ALTO – While unhealthy school meals are prompting legislators around the country to consider laws making them better, some California school districts are hoping to achieve that goal by going organic. 

The Palo Alto Unified School District is considering such a switch, following the lead of Berkeley schools that made the move more than a year ago. 

The Palo Alto schools held a tasting Friday to determine what organic foods students would eat. The idea is to offer chemical-free ingredients, and fresh, locally grown, organic fruits and vegetables to children. 

Alicia Michelson, a fifth-grader at Ohlone Elementary School where the tasting was held, tried the organic strawberries, macaroni and cheese, and rice. 

“I think it was better than what we usually have,” she said. “I think we should have more organic things, because it’s better for our health.” 

Students placed paper clips in one of three tubs marked “yummy,” “OK” or “yuck,” to let school officials know what they thought. Most of the votes for foods including burritos, pasta and chicken fettucine were “yummy,” but some, such as the chickenless nuggets, received mostly “OK” votes. 

Ohlone third-grader Catherine Volpe usually buys her lunch at school, and said that although she didn’t know what organic meant, she liked the food better. 

“It was delicious,” she said. “It just tasted a little better and a bunch of things were much more healthy.” 

Berkeley Unified School District decided more than a year ago to get many of its ingredients from local organic farmers or from its school gardens. 

Palo Alto Unified won’t be switching its meal provider. Instead, the district is working with Sodexho, the Maryland-based food service giant, to provide organic lunches to three elementary schools, and then possibly expanding it to 14 other district schools. Because Sodexho works in schools nationally, the district is hoping the change catches on. 

“This can happen everywhere if people support it,” said Jesse Cool, a member of Palo Alto’s Healthy School Lunches committee. “Hopefully, organic is not elitist any more. All kids deserve to have it.” 

But if the change to organic is made, kids may not see a drastic overhaul of lunch menus. They’ll still be able to get pizza and cookies. 

“We’re trying to do the food they’re used to eating, but maybe make it taste a little better and be a little healthier,” Cool said. 

The change could affect cost, said Alva Spence, area manager for Sodexho and food service consultant for the district. Currently, school lunches cost students about $2.20. The price of milk alone could rise about 50 cents for an 8-ounce carton when the move is made to organic, Spence said. 

That wouldn’t deter Kristi Vandivier, whose two sons attend second and fourth grade at Ohlone. Vandivier’s children bring their lunches, which she says are healthier than the meals the school already offers. 

“It’s worth it to me to pay the extra money,” she said.


Saturday June 01, 2002

In 1792, Kentucky became the 15th state of the union. 

In 1796, Tennessee became the 16th state. 

In 1813, the commander of the U.S. frigate Chesapeake, Capt. James Lawrence, said, “Don’t give up the ship” during a losing battle with a British frigate. 

In 1868, James Buchanan, the 15th president of the United States, died near Lancaster, Pa. 

In 1926, actress Marilyn Monroe was born in Los Angeles. 


Ten years ago  

The U.S. Treasury Department, responding to U.N. sanctions imposed on Yugoslavia, froze an estimated $200 million in assets of the Serb-led Yugoslav government. The Pittsburgh Penguins completed a four-game sweep of the Chicago Blackhawks to win hockey’s Stanley Cup for the second straight year. 

Five years ago  

Betty Shabazz, the widow of Malcolm X, was fatally burned in a fire set by her 12-year-old grandson in her Yonkers, N.Y., apartment. The Broadway show “Titanic” won five Tony Awards, including best musical. 

One year ago  

A suicide bomber attacked a Tel Aviv nightclub, killing himself and 21 Israelis. The king, queen and seven other members of Nepal’s royal family were slain by Crown Prince Dipendra, who then mortally wounded himself. “Dennis the Menace” creator Hank Ketcham died in Pebble Beach, Calif., at age 81.


Saturday June 01, 2002

On June 29, 1776, the Virginia state constitution was adopted, and Patrick Henry made governor. 

On this date: 

In 1767, the British Parliament approved the Townshend Revenue Acts, which imposed import duties on certain goods shipped to America. Colonists bitterly protested the Acts, which were repealed in 1770. 

In 1946, British authorities arrested more than 2,700 Jews in Palestine in an attempt to stamp out alleged terrorism. 

In 1949, the government of South Africa enacted a ban against racially-mixed marriages. 

In 1954, the Atomic Energy Commission voted against reinstating Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer’s access to classified information. 

In 1966, the United States bombed fuel storage facilities near the North Vietnamese cities of Hanoi and Haiphong. 

In 1967, Jerusalem was re-unified as Israel removed barricades separating the Old City from the Israeli sector. 

In 1970, the United States ended a two-month military offensive into Cambodia. 

In 1972, the Supreme Court ruled the death penalty, as it was being meted out, could constitute “cruel and unusual punishment.” (The ruling prompted states to revise their capital punishment laws.) 

In 1981, Hu Yaobang, a protege of Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping, was elected Communist Party chairman, replacing Mao Tse-tung’s handpicked successor, Hua Guofeng. 

Ten years ago: A divided Supreme Court ruled that women have a constitutional right to abortion, but the justices also weakened the right as defined by the Roe v. Wade decision. The remains of Polish statesman Ignace Jan Paderewski, interred for five decades in the United States, were returned to his homeland in keeping with his wish to be buried only in a free Poland. 

Five years ago: In Albania, gunmen menaced voters, burned ballots and pressured polling officials, marring parliamentary elections meant to steer the country toward recovery after months of chaos. 

One year ago: Vice President Dick Cheney, experiencing heart problems for the third time since the November election, announced he was going back to the hospital, where he expected doctors to implant a pacemaker to even out a rapid heartbeat. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan was elected to a second term. 

Today’s Birthdays: Songwriter L. Russell Brown is 62. Comedian Richard Lewis is 55. Actor Fred Grandy is 54. Rock musician Ian Paice (Deep Purple) is 54. Singer Don Dokken (Dokken) is 49. Rock singer Colin Hay (Men At Work) is 49.Singer Nicole Scherzinger (Eden’s Crush) is 24. 

Two California men among those in climbing accident

By Christina Almeida, The Associated Press
Friday May 31, 2002

A pastor and a retired airline pilot from Northern California, both experienced mountain climbers, were among the nine people who tumbled into a crevasse on Oregon’s Mount Hood on Thursday, the pastor’s wife told The Associated Press. 

Rev. Thomas Hillman, 45, of Windsor, Calif., was hiking down from the summit with a group that included his friend John Biggs, Hillman’s wife, Holly, said in a phone interview Thursday night from the couple’s Windsor home in Sonoma County. 

He was hospitalized with a head injury but was able to talk with her briefly by phone and described the accident to her, she said. She didn’t know the condition of his friend. 

Three people died on the mountain, and a helicopter crashed and rolled down a snowy slope during an attempted rescue. Two climbers and two people in the copter were injured. 

Mrs. Hillman, who like her husband is a pastor at the Windsor Community Methodist Church, said he and Biggs were among two groups of climbers who were about 800 feet from the 11,240-foot summit when the tragedy occurred. 

She said the other group lost its footing and crashed into the group that included Biggs and Hillman. 

“That sent John flying down the slope,” she said. “Tom did all he could to stop the fall, but the other team got tangled with John and got tangled up in the crevasse.” 

Hillman said her 45-year-old husband was an emergency medical technician and captain of a fire crew before becoming a pastor. 

“He’s very, very safe. If you had to have a safe partner, that’s who Tom was,” she said. 

Both her husband and Biggs are avid climbers who have scaled mountains across the country, Hillman said. They climbed mountains in Montana and Wyoming last year. 

“It’s the challenge and the exhilaration of being on top of God’s creation,” she said. 

Biggs, a retired pilot for United Air Lines, is a member of the Hillmans’ church. 

Grand jury says SF should tackle homeless problem

Daily Planet Wire Service
Thursday May 30, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — San Francisco's Civil Grand Jury yesterday released a detailed report on the city's response to homelessness, finding a serious lack of leadership and coordination as the problem has worsened over the years. 

Noting that more than 100 people die on the street each year and somewhere around 10,000 lack a permanent home despite a budget hovering above $104 million in services alone, the report concludes that homelessness is “the pre-eminent social issue facing San Francisco.” 

The report was based on a seven-month investigation. 

But instead of creating a new department, as some city supervisors have suggested, the grand jury recommends forming a seven-member citizen commission that would be accountable to both the mayor and Board of Supervisors. At the same time, the panel faults the current mayoral administration for failing to articulate a clear policy and also questions the value of funding the Mayor's Office on Homelessness, which it terms “ineffectual and inconsistent.” 

Similarly, the quality of service varies widely among the city's 10 emergency shelters, according to the grand jurors, and no systemwide tracking has been established to match up those in need with the beds available. Better overall coordination among the various agencies and groups involved is also needed to avoid duplication and waste. 

The grand jurors expressed concern that many San Franciscans do not seem to understand the causes of homelessness, despite widespread media coverage of the issue. Public education and involvement in solutions should also be part of the city's plans, the report concludes, and a dedicated funding source should be considered. 

News of the Weird

Wednesday May 29, 2002

‘I got hit by a goose’ 

WINNIPEG, Manitoba — If only Shawn Hacking hadn’t forgotten to duck, he might never have been goosed. 

The 13-year-old was knocked off his skateboard last Thursday after a Canada goose heading for a nearby pond misjudged its landing and slammed into his face. 

“I was stunned,” said Shawn, who hobbled home with two badly scraped knees, a sprained wrist, a ripped shirt and a red face where the bird’s wing slapped him. 

“It was so funny, but I felt sorry for him at the same time,” recalled Shawn’s skateboarding buddy Brent Bruchanski. “It flew out of nowhere and then . . . Wham bam!” 

The goose just kept going, added the boys. 

When he got home, Shawn’s mother Kim Hacking was a little horrified at first with how badly he had been roughed up. 

“When he came in, he said, ‘I got hit by a goose,”’ she said. “I thought that was some kind of car or something.” 


Man gets his neighbor’s goat  

NEW GLASGOW, Nova Scotia — It was supposed to be a prank to get back at the owner of a goat that was munching on neighbors’ flowers. 

But the joke wound up costing a Nova Scotia man $330 in fines after he pleaded guilty in the goat-napping case. 

Authorities say the theft took place after Percy the goat’s owner got into a disagreement with a neighbor over the animal running loose and chewing on flowers. Vera Myers returned home the next day to find her pet missing. 

Michel Andre Daviau, 41, admitted he took the goat as a prank while on a fishing trip and says a neighbor encouraged him to take it because it was a nuisance. Daviau told the judge it was all a joke and he didn’t think it would come to this. 

Provincial court Judge Clyde MacDonald says it was no joke to the goat’s owner, who was deprived of her pet for two days. 


Boy chooses cash over Britney  

YAKIMA, Wash. — A 13-year-old boy decided he’d rather have $475 in cash than see teen pop queen Britney Spears in concert. 

After twisting off the cap from a bottle of Pepsi, Andrew Benson discovered he had won four tickets to a Spears concert and $200 in spending money. His musical taste runs more to rap artists so the choice wasn’t too difficult. 

Andrew called the toll-free number on the cap and traded in the prizes for $475, which he plans to share with his nine brothers and sisters and four cousins. 

His mother said she will pitch in another $25, so he can start with an even $500. 

Andrew said he felt lucky after he spent $1 on a Pepsi at the school store. 

“This might be a winner,” he recalled telling his friends. 

There are 4,800 bottle caps offering tickets to Spears’ Summer 2002 Tour concerts, and the odds of winning are 1-in-51,163, according to PepsiCo. 


FLOYD, Iowa (AP) 

— An Iowa family has a new pet and it has a wing span of more than 3 feet. 

John and Margaret Majerczyk said they have seen all kinds of animals wander onto their property in the 26 years they’ve been in rural Floyd County, but they had never befriended a large turkey before. 

The bird is most likely a young turkey vulture, which is often called a buzzard. 

The Majerczyks named him Buzz. 

The bird follows John into his auto restoration shop and tags along with Margaret out to the clothesline. The animal is there when the Majerczyks awake in the mornings, often sitting on a flower box peering into the house, waiting for someone to come out. 

And he anxiously awaits feeding time, which consists of about a half-pound of hamburger a day. When he’s not eating, Buzz roosts in a dead tree or struts around the yard playing with whatever he can find. 

Margaret Majerczyk said she was “a little shocked” when Buzz started following her around the yard. 

At first, “I didn’t know what to think,” she said. “I was leery. At first I thought it was injured and couldn’t fly. But then it does fly.” 

Fred Heinz, director of the Cerro Gordo County Conservation Board, said the vulture may have had prior human contact. He may have been blown out of a nest and been fed by someone else, because most turkey vultures are wary of humans. 


Friends say dead climbers were experts

The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Three of four were members of Oregon State climbing club 


ASHFORD, Wash. – The four friends whose trek to the summit of Mount Rainier ended in disaster and three deaths were expert climbers in search of the breathless views at the top of the region’s rugged mountain ranges, their friends say. 

“I don’t think they were beyond their ability,” said Keith Pearen, president of Mountaineering Club at Oregon State University in Corvallis. Three of the four climbers were OSU students and club members. 

“It’s just that, sometimes, things like this happen,” Pearen said as friends gathered at a park to remember those who died — Keeta Owens, 21, of Lebanon, Ore., and two German climbers: Cornelius Beilharz, 26, of Stuttgart and Grit Kleinschmidt, 26, of Dresden, who was here visiting. 

Autopsies on Beilharz, a computer-engineering graduate student at OSU, and Kleinschmidt were scheduled late Friday. Owens, an animal-sciences major originally from Alaska, died of blunt head and neck trauma, the medical examiner’s office reported. 

“I just can’t imagine not seeing her again,” said Donna Yanik, who owns a ranch in Lebanon, Ore., where Owens lived and kept her animals, including a thoroughbred named Quinton. “She was part of our family.” 

Yanik told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer she and Owens had talked about the climbing trip last week, and Owens had promised they would not attempt the climb if the weather was bad. 

“She was a very conscientious person,” Yanik added. “I’m sure she wouldn’t try it if she wasn’t sure it was OK.” 

But the weather took the climbers by surprise. 

Just one of the party survived — the 29-year-old group leader, Andreas Kurth, who fell from their precarious emergency campsite before dawn Wednesday and then set out for help. Park spokeswoman Lee Taylor released Kurth’s name Friday, but his hometown in Germany was not provided and Taylor could not immediately be reached for further information. 

He managed to contact rescuers using a cell phone from another climbing party he met at St. Elmo’s Pass at the 7,800-foot level. But by the time rescuers reached the peak late Wednesday, all three of the others had fallen to their deaths in high winds and whiteout conditions, park spokesman Maria Gillett said. 

The climbers had set out Saturday, hoping to summit on Monday. Deep snow slowed them down, and by the time they reached the summit by way of Liberty Ridge — a tough, challenging climb — the weather had turned for the deadly worst. 

They huddled just below the 14,411-foot summit, struggling to build snow shelters when 60 mph winds snapped their tent poles and left them exposed to whiteout conditions. When Beilharz fell and the completed shelter collapsed, Kurth tried to put together a makeshift shelter for the two women, said Gillett and park spokeswoman Lee Taylor. 

When he went to see to their fallen friend, Kurth fell himself and damaged his climbing boot so he was unable to return to the women near the summit. Instead, he set out for help. 

Kurth told rangers both women were still alive at the collapsed snow caves when he left at about 4 a.m. Wednesday to seek help, Gillett said, but sometime after that, it appears both women fell as well. 

Owens landed near Beilharz, where her body was found Wednesday. Kleinschmidt landed in a nearby crevasse. Rangers were able to retrieve her body with ropes on Thursday, Taylor said. 

Mount Rainier, the highest peak in the Pacific Northwest, is about 60 miles southeast of Seattle. 

“Mount Rainier makes its own weather,” Gillett said Wednesday. “You can see sunny skies and five minutes later see clouds come in, and the weather can change very, very quickly.” 

Thirteen climbers have died on Liberty Cap and Liberty Ridge since 1968, including three men who died while climbing together on May 13, 1988.

Animated role proves perfect fit for Tia Carrere

By B.J. Reyes, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

HONOLULU — Tia Carrere, born and raised in Honolulu, says her latest role is particularly special to her — even if she’s nowhere to be seen on screen. 

Carrere provides the voice for Nani, the older sister in Disney’s new animated movie “Lilo & Stitch,” which is set on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. 

“I have this love for Hawaii and to be able to represent Hawaii — this is a big film and it’s all about Hawaii and ohana, ‘family’ — it’s the perfect fit,” said Carrere, 35. 

Nani — who must be both sister and guardian to the mischievous Lilo — is a far cry from Carrere’s role as Sydney Fox, the Indiana Jones-like history professor in the syndicated TV series “Relic Hunter.” 

“Lilo & Stitch” is the first animated film part for Carrere, whose roles have ranged from Mike Myers’ love interest in “Wayne’s World” to a secret agent opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger in “True Lies.” 

She also has agreed to voice Nani for an animated TV series based on the movie, which is about a lonely little girl who, with the help of a mischievous space alien, helps rediscover her sense of family and belonging. 

Also lending his voice to the movie is Jason Scott Lee, who moved to Hawaii when he was 2 and lives on a farm on the Big Island. 

Carrere said it was important to both of them that Hawaii be depicted accurately, including the way the characters speak the local pidgin English. 

Q: Are you satisfied with how Hawaii comes across in the movie? 

A: Absolutely. I think it’s going to make people want to come to Hawaii because of how good it makes them feel when they watch it in the film. 

It’s the feeling of togetherness and family, and it’s so beautiful the way it’s hand-drawn — the watercolors and everything — it really gives you a feeling of how lush and gorgeous Hawaii is. 

Q:. How is working on an animated feature different from your other projects? 

A: It’s very different in that you have no idea what the finished product is going to look like. ... You’re really shooting blindly and trusting the directors to point you in the right direction — where you’re supposed to be and how big your (voice is) supposed to be, and calibrating the performance. 

Q: Would you do it again? 

A: Oh, absolutely. When it’s a Disney animated feature — and this is the way I sold it to Jason — I said, ‘You have to do it. It’s something that’s there for all posterity, and we’re representing Hawaii on top of it.’ 

It’s a history. It’s an archive of family entertainment from ‘Dumbo,’ to ‘Bambi’ to ‘The Little Mermaid’ — all these films are some of my favorite films and to think that I’ll be part of it forever and for my children, if and when I have them, and my children’s children, it will always be there. I’m sure that’s why a lot of stars do it. 

Q: What was it like hearing your voice coming from an animated character? 

A: It was unnerving. The first time I saw it, it was very distracting ... It’s weird hearing your voice coming out of somebody that doesn’t look like you. 

Q: What’s next in your career? 

A: If I could figure out a way to live in Hawaii and make a living, my life would be complete. To live on the beach in Hawaii and make a living — that would be my idea of heaven. 

Survivors and investigators try to reconstruct calamity

By Joseph B. Frazier, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

Day-long rescue was aided by presence of doctor, firemen 

TIMBERLINE LODGE, Ore. – Cleve Joiner, who has made a career rescuing others, watched in disbelief as his 14-year-old son slid down an icy slope into a crevasse on Mount Hood along with eight other climbers. 

It was the beginning of a chain reaction that killed three other climbers and led to the crash of an Air Force Reserve helicopter on Thursday. 

“There were three teams,” Joiner said Friday, the day after the calamity. “There was a team at the very top, a team in the middle, and then the team that my son was on, three of them above the crevasse, and then we were on the opposite side.” 

Many of the details remain unclear, lost in a swirl of steel ice axes, nylon climbing ropes and terror. It began just after 9 a.m. 

“The top team lost their footing, took out the next four, then took out my son and them, knocked them down, and then they went into the crevasse,” Joiner said on ABC-TV’s Good Morning America. They were climbing with other firemen trained in first aid. 

“It happened so quick that it was hard to think about what it was like,” said Cole Joiner, a high school freshman. “I just remember seeing climbers come down at me and then being in the hole.” 

Nearly 50 climbers had registered to climb to the summit of 11,240-foot Mount Hood — Oregon’s highest peak — on Thursday. 

A number of them rushed to the edge of the 25-foot deep cleft, including Dr. Steve Boyer, a Portland emergency room physician. Climbers took ropes from the Joiner party and began preparing for what proved to be a daylong rescue operation. 

“What really was fortunate was there were lots of well-trained paramedics there before I arrived,” said Boyer. 

“They had set up a nice pulley system and I immediately went down into the crevasse to help with the decision of who had treatable injuries ... and making triage decisions who should come out of the crevasse first.” 

Rescue parties began arriving on foot, and military helicopters were sent to carry victims. Two hours after the first accident, Cole Joiner was pulled from the crevasse, and hugged his father. 

A Pave Hawk helicopter lifted a seriously injured climber off the mountain, returned for another, and was preparing to hoist a third aboard when the pilot lost control. 

Boyer blamed it on a wind shift, but the Air Force Reserve was just beginning its investigation and had not released a cause of the accident. 

The helicopter veered away from the cluster of rescuers around the crevasse and a crewman released the cable to the waiting gurney, in an apparent effort to avoid further casualties. 

“The wind changed, they lost their air power,” Boyer said. “I glanced over my left shoulder .... I saw that they were losing power, and I thought, ’Oh my God! They are going crash!” 

The chopper’s nose touched the snow, it appeared to right itself, and then the uphill rotor dug into the slope. The blades spun off the aircraft, which tumbled down the hill, tossing out all four crewmembers, according to witnesses and videotape of the incident. 

“It is a miracle that no one had major injuries,” said Boyer. 

A California man, John Biggs, 62, of Windsor, was confirmed Friday as among the three killed. The others were William Gordon Ward, 49, and Richard T. Read, 48, both of Forest Grove. 

Biggs was climbing with the Rev. Thomas Hillman, 45, also of Windsor, Hillman’s wife Holly said. She said she had spoken by telephone with her husband in the hospital where he was being treated for a head injury, but that he had offered few details. 

“He’s just so fuzzy-minded,” she said. “He was unconscious for a long time.” 

She said another group lost its footing and crashed into Biggs and Hillman. 

“That sent John flying down the slope,” she said. “Tom did all he could to stop the fall, but the other team got tangled with John and got tangled up in the crevasse.” 

Rescuers went up Mount Hood early Friday to retrieve the last of three climbers killed, and the Air Force announced that an investigating team would be on the mountain within 24 to 48 hours.

‘The Wire’: an intellectual TV police drama

By Ben Nuckols, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

BALTIMORE — “The Wire” is only nominally about Baltimore detectives’ protracted investigation of a drug gang in the city’s west side housing projects — it’s also a conduit for David Simon’s exploration of the futility of the drug war and the pervasiveness of corporate culture. 

In Simon’s view, the police department and the drug organization are dysfunctional corporations that treat their employees as expendable and have lost touch with the public they serve, existing just to sustain themselves; and his two protagonists — homicide detective James McNulty (Dominic West) and midlevel drug dealer D’Angelo Barksdale (Larry Gilliard Jr.) — are frustrated middlemen whose iconoclasm puts them at odds with their bosses. 

“McNulty’s working for Enron, and so is D’Angelo Barksdale,” Simon, the show’s creator and executive producer, said during a location shoot on Baltimore’s notoriously violent Pennsylvania Avenue. 

“What we’re trying to do is a TV show that is masquerading as a cop show, but it’s really about what happens when a policy goes awry and bureaucracies become entrenched,” said Simon. “The police bureaucracy is fixed and permanent, and the drug bureaucracy equally so, and they both treat their middle management the same.” 

The 13-episode series (whose fifth episode airs Sunday at 10 p.m. EDT) kicked off with McNulty sitting in on Barksdale’s murder trial. The young killer walked free after his cohorts intimidated witnesses. Afterward, for motives that remain unclear, McNulty spilled his guts to the trial judge about the drug gang run by Barksdale’s uncle, Avon, and the 10 murders it has committed without a conviction. 

The confession creates a whirlwind of shakedowns and finger-pointing within the police department, and McNulty is banished to the narcotics unit to try to bring a case against the Barksdale crew and placate the judge. But the department clearly isn’t committed to the kind of investigation — with wiretaps and sophisticated surveillance — that would net any major arrests. 

Meanwhile, Barksdale is banished by his uncle to a low-rise housing project, where he becomes increasingly disillusioned with the violence necessary to sustain the drug trade. 

Simon, a former police reporter for The (Baltimore) Sun, previously worked on two other Baltimore-based TV shows — “Homicide: Life on the Street” and “The Corner.” But he wanted to return to the streets of Baltimore because there were aspects of the police department and the drug war he hadn’t yet explored. 

“This is the department I covered in all its dysfunctional glory, where everybody was careerist and where nobody lost their pension by failing to do police work,” Simon said. 

The show’s comprehensive look at a drug organization comes largely from Edward Burns, Simon’s co-writer, who was a Baltimore detective for 20 years and specialized in the kind of protracted investigations that “The Wire” dramatizes — investigations that, in the end, did little to change the city’s poorest neighborhoods. 

“Whatever damage that the drugs themselves haven’t done to these neighborhoods, the war against them has managed to do,” Simon said. “It’s impaired the police department, it’s alienated whole subcultures of Americans, and it’s solved nothing.” 

Very little is disguised in “The Wire,” from the blighted locations full of vacant lots and gutted, boarded-up row houses to the back-stabbing and dishonesty in the police department’s downtown headquarters. 

The grittiness extends to the actors, most of whom don’t have Hollywood looks — except, perhaps, for West as McNulty. 

West, a native of Sheffield, England, is starring in his first series after a run of supporting roles in films including ”28 Days” and “Rock Star.” During a chat in his trailer, he’s self-effacing about his uneasiness playing a Baltimore detective and his attempts to lick the American accent. 

“It’s a dream for an actor to do something that’s completely alien, and this really is completely alien to me,” West said. 

Not so for Simon. He’s showing the world as he sees it, and makes no apologies about using a TV drama to explore widespread political and social malaise. 

For that reason, “The Wire” will likely have to work harder to build an audience than HBO’s breakout hits “The Sopranos” and “Six Feet Under.” 

Simon hopes his audience will be patient. 

“We can’t pay viewers off with an arrest or a victory or a solidifying sense of accomplishment every episode,” he said. “We’re after something different, and hopefully the payoff is much more resonant and much more meaningful.”

China, United States dancers strike gold

By Deborah Bulkeley, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

JACKSON, Miss. — China’s Wu Haiyan says performing with the best dancers in the world was as great an honor as the gold medal she received in USA International Ballet Competition. 

Haiyan was awarded the gold medal in the senior women’s division on Friday. The competition closes Sunday with a performance by medal winners. 

The USA IBC is the United States’ official international ballet competition. The two-week competition is held every four years in Jackson. About 100 dancers from 24 countries competed this year. 

Speaking through an interpreter, Haiyan said she hopes the experience she gained during her first international performance will help her “give more beautiful performances to audiences around the world.” 

“This is a new beginning for me,” she said. “In the future I will make a great effort to achieve more.” 

Haiyan, 23, performs with the Central Ballet in Beijing, also known as the National Ballet. She’s been dancing since she was 10 years old. 

American dancer Joseph Phillips, a native of Columbia, S.C., took the gold in the men’s junior division. Phillips, a 16-year-old student at the North Carolina School for the Arts, said he plans to pursue a career in classical ballet. 

“I just think it was a dream and it just came true,” Phillips said. 

No gold medals were awarded in the men’s senior or women’s junior divisions. 

Bruce Marks, chairman of the international jury, said gold medals are not always awarded because dancers are judged on international standards. 

“We are comparing these youngsters to the best dancers around,” he said. 

Medalists in each of four divisions receive cash prizes, Marks said. The jury also awarded special awards and scholarships to some finalists who did not medal.

Cell phones are the latest accessory at rock concerts

By Catherine Lucey, The Associated Press
Saturday June 01, 2002

CAMDEN, N.J.— When Colombian singer Shakira takes the amphitheater stage in this teen-pop concert, girls in the crowd wave their hands in the air and squeal. Then they whip out their cell phones and call a friend. 

Mobile phones have quickly become a popular concert accessory. Fans call friends to brag about the show and hold up their phones so others can hear a favorite song. 

At a recent concert at the Tweeter Center in Camden, the crowd was dotted with tiny cell phones — Nokias and Motorolas in pink, silver and blue. 

“She couldn’t come, and this is our song,” yells Casey Connelly, 18, of Ridley Park, Pa., over the thunderous sounds of Shakira’s “Underneath Your Clothes.” 

Connelly sways back and forth with the crowd, her phone above her head in one hand. 

“She did it for Britney Spears and now for this,” says her friend Megan McGorman, 18, on the other end of the line at home in Ridley Park. 

Sue Aiello, 19, is sitting on the grass with three friends, all wearing tank tops and chatting on cell phones. She plans to call friends when Ja Rule comes on later. “They’re working and I’m not,” she explains. 

Of course, not everybody at the concert is calling to share the music or show off. 

“I called in between songs to check on my son,” said Jennifer Ritchie, 21, of Leesburg, N.J. 

And many parents insist their teens take a phone to a concert for safety’s sake, or to let parents know where and when to pick them up. 

Concert promoter Butch Stone of Little Rock, Ark., says he’s never heard artists complain about cell-phone use during performances or raise questions about whether people on the other end of the phone might be recording the show. 

“In terms of piracy, I don’t think the technology is there,” he said. 

“Our policy is this: Unless the artist objects, we don’t restrict cell phones or cameras. I can’t recall the artist ever having a problem.” 

The concert calls are just part of cell phones’ overall popularity with young people, said Verizon Wireless spokeswoman Brenda Raney. 

“People from 18 to 24 are coming of age in a technological era. Because so many of them have them now, they’re getting more creative in how they use them,” she said. 

She also said “people are text messaging everything from ’Meet me at the concert’ to ’Where are you?”’ 

Jodi Heyman, 25, holds out her phone during a song by the boisterous O-Town. She leaves a message for her brother, who’s in the military.