Opinion

Editorials

Appeal Is the Prudent Choice In UC Decision

By Becky O'Malley
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 09:50:00 AM

Today’s regular editorial, to be found in its usual place in the opinion section, was written on Tuesday, before the trial court decision on the three lawsuits against the University of California. But Judge Barbara Miller’s decision, faxed to attorneys late in the day on Tuesday, puts the Berkeley City Council suddenly on the hot seat. Because of the judge’s curious timing—some angry friends of the oaks even call it prejudicial—plaintiffs, including the City of Berkeley, have only a short week in which to file their appeals. It’s especially tough because Tuesday night was supposed to have been the last City Council meeting before the summer recess, and many other members of plaintiff groups and their attorneys are on vacation, to be expected at this time of year. -more-


Obama Leads the Way for Young Candidates

By Becky O’Malley
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:03:00 AM

Buyer’s Remorse is hitting the presidential sweepstakes long about now. Left-leaners are discovering that Barack Obama just might not be the messiah incarnate, might even have at least one clay foot, or perhaps a clay toe or two. They cringe when he compromises on Senate votes, even on votes where the good guys had not a prayer of winning. I’m as guilty as the next aging lefty—I unsubscribed from his web page in a fit of pique after the FISA vote. But really, does that make sense? No. -more-


Cartoons

Shirley's Platform

By Justin DeFreitas
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 12:29:00 PM

Click Here to Support Your Local Cartoonist!

By Justin DeFreitas
Tuesday July 29, 2008 - 09:50:00 AM

Public Comment

Letters to the Editor

Tuesday July 29, 2008 - 08:39:00 AM

Secret UC Berkeley Letter to the City Council Subverts Democratic Decision-Making

By Doug Buckwald
Friday July 25, 2008 - 10:03:00 AM

One never really gets used to getting thrown out of the lifeboat, no matter how many times it may have happened in the past. It is always excruciatingly shocking and painful. Last Thursday night, the city council did this to its own citizens again—right after a special closed council meeting called by the mayor to decide whether or not the city would appeal Judge Barbara Miller’s recent ruling in the Memorial Stadium oak grove case. The city decided not to appeal, thus also tossing overboard the quarter million dollars it has already invested in the case. -more-


Victory in Stadium Case Must Come on Appeal

By Antonio Rossmann
Friday July 25, 2008 - 11:58:00 AM

As predicted, Judge Miller’s decision enabled the university to “find” their way out of it, with minimal environmental commitments. (Those promises about stadium use etc should be recorded as were the UC commitments when they acquired the blind school for Clark Kerr.) I am a bit surprised that she (to use your phrase) sliced and diced the costs; that is her discretion and proves, as does her final order, that she really believed that UC won the case as originally decided. -more-


Berkeley Boosters Police Activities League: A Primer

By David Manson
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:06:00 AM

I just finished reading Ms. Scherr’s “article” on the new Berkeley Hosts program, and felt immediately compelled to write. -more-


Beating a Dead Horse: The Bus Rapid Transit Draft EIR

By Alan Tobey
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:07:00 AM

Dean Metzger (July 17) and other opponents of a Bus Rapid Transit plan that would employ dedicated lanes, continue to quote the project’s obsolescent draft environmental report (DEIR) as if it’s holy writ, and as if everything preliminarily mentioned therein will inevitably come to pass. But this stance ignores the first word in the title: The 15-month-old DEIR is indeed merely a first draft that attempts to generally describe the project, but inevitably does so in a way that all interested parties know is incomplete at best and sometimes even misleading. -more-


What’s Next In Iraq?

By Ralph Stone
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:07:00 AM

Sen. Barack Obama’s recent trip to Iraq is an excellent time to ask where we are in Iraq both militarily and economically. First, let’s be clear, the United States invasion and occupation of Iraq was and is about seizing and controlling its major oil fields. Those who still believe otherwise haven’t been paying attention. (By the way, an invasion to seize natural resources is illegal under the Geneva Conventions.) Thus, it would seem to be the responsibility of the United States to rebuild Iraq’s infrastructure. We broke it. We should fix it. Remember, Saddam Hussein’s regime paid $9 billion to Kuwait in reparations for its 1990 invasion. The ill-advised Iraq adventure so far has cost the United States 4,125 dead and 30,324 wounded and $538.6 billion. In addition, thousands of Iraqi civilians have died or been displaced by the war. -more-


Land-Use Consequences in Berkeley’s Southside

By Doug Buckwald
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:09:00 AM

Here is a news flash for those who don’t think land use issues are important: They are important! For example, in the Southside neighborhood, the university has recently added hundreds of new living spaces for students in residence halls and apartments. This has dramatically increased the percentage of students living in this area. The problem is that students are usually transient and have little interest or incentive to maintain—let alone improve—the quality of life for all residents. -more-


Emission Cuts Alone Won’t Solve the Problem

By James Singmaster
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:08:00 AM

In a July 17 front-page article in the San Francisco Chronicle, a poll on the public’s views on action and attitude over gas prices showed that Californians’ attitudes are changing to be more receptive to nuclear energy and offshore drilling indicating that big oil and energy companies are getting their way even here. They are backing away from taking the action, given much publicity by some of those companies, of finding energy alternatives, perhaps now even underplaying various government agencies from working on alternatives, especially hydrogen. This may backfire on them and the United States as Chinese investigators have recently reported a catalyst to generate hydrogen from water using the sun’s energy. BP has been conning the UC Berkeley and other universities with big bucks for biofuels that got debunked in the April 7 Time cover article “The Clean Energy Myth.” -more-


Protecting the Right to Marry

By Mark Coplan
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:09:00 AM

I just celebrated my fourth wedding anniversary with the most incredible woman. When our relationship began six years ago, I knew that she was the woman that I had spent a lifetime looking for. I knew from that moment, and so did she. -more-


Berkeley’s Green Solution

By Tom Cloutier
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:10:00 AM

After recently reaching the advanced age of 60, I was surprised to find that I still harbored some naive schoolboy notions. For instance, I still have this silly idea that we elect fellow citizens to carry out various tasks for which we may not have the expertise or time. I further assume there is a tacit agreement that these public employees would represent and advance the interests of their employers. This simplistic notion still forms my working definition of government. -more-


Panoramic Hill Moratorium Costly to Land Owners

By David Gilley
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 12:28:00 PM

I am writing regarding our developable legal lot at 2 Panoramic Place, Panoramic Hill, Berkeley. We understand that the Berkeley City Council may enact a residential development moratorium in the Panoramic Hill Area that targets our property. -more-


Friendship Is a Two-Way Street: KPFA's Fading Democratic Principles

By Richard Phelps
Thursday July 24, 2008 - 12:29:00 PM

I had hoped that KPFA’s "FriendRaiser" was going to be an improvement from the “Alternative Home Shopping Network." (Fundraising by recording speeches and public affairs programs, playing a teaser portion to get our interest, and then “selling” them as a “gift” for our donations.) The tragedy in this methodology is that the vast majority of KPFA’s audience is denied these programs unless they buy them.  Which means that low-income listeners are “priced out” of access and the information won’t get broad dissemination in our broadcast area, which I believe is the main reason for KPFA to exist. -more-


Letters to the Editor

Thursday July 24, 2008 - 10:04:00 AM

BERKELEY COMMUNITY MEDIA -more-