American Democracy, Ideal Versus Real

By Becky O’Malley
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:10:00 AM

One day this week, much to my surprise, I pledged allegiance, sang the national anthem, and had my picture taken next to an American flag with an immigration service official. Why? one might ask, as I asked myself. Because a friend was being admitted to an exclusive society, becoming a naturalized American citizen, and despite all of our griping about what’s wrong with this country of ours, he thinks it’s great, and so do I. -more-


The Clip-'n'-Go Endangered Frog

By Justin DeFreitas
Friday August 01, 2008 - 12:22:00 PM

Click Here to Support Your Local Cartoonist!

By Justin DeFreitas
Friday August 01, 2008 - 12:23:00 PM

Public Comment

Letters to the Editor

Monday August 04, 2008 - 07:56:00 PM

Letters to the Editor

Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:11:00 AM


Questioning the AC Transit-Van Hool Partnership

By Joyce Roy
Tuesday August 05, 2008 - 03:23:00 PM

AC Transit began displaying a proto-type Van Hool 40-foot, two-door, low-aisle bus in June. After a few mechanical fixes, it is now ready for the rubber to hit the road. And they have prepared a survey for riders. -more-

Council’s Closed Session Discussion Violated Brown Act

By Shirley Dean
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:14:00 AM

I believe that actions taken by the City Council during its July 24 closed session are in violation of the Brown Act, California’s “sunshine” law. The City Council needs to take action immediately to correct that violation and put in place a procedure that enhances the public’s right to know information vital to their comments regarding subjects to be discussed in closed sessions. -more-

Council Won’t Explain Non-Decision Decision

By Terry Francke
Tuesday August 05, 2008 - 03:26:00 PM

As reported in the Berkeley Daily Planet, no city official will disclose which members of the Berkeley City Council supported or opposed the possible appeal of what may be the city’s most controversial court loss this year. -more-

Council Actions Subverted Democratic Decision-Making

By Doug Buckwald
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:14:00 AM

Last Thursday night, the Berkeley City Council threw its citizens out of the lifeboat again—this time in 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. Not only that, the City Council appears to have violated the Brown Act in the process, and may be about to give up all rights to any future court challenges to the university’s legally questionable plans for the reconstruction of Memorial Stadium. This goes beyond simple sell-out and ventures into the realm of serious civic misconduct. -more-

Dona Spring, Tom Bates, and the Sound of Silence

By Elliot Cohen
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:17:00 AM

I have not written to the Daily Planet often in the past few years because the current state of our city is so depressing that I don’t know where to start. But the passing of Dona Spring has made me start thinking again of all the work that needs to be done. -more-

Victory in UC Stadium Case Must Come on Appeal

By Antonio Rossman
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:18:00 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 the Planet’s 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-

Connecting the Dots

By Kingman Lim
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:19:00 AM

I’ve had the honor and pleasure of being able to participate in the oak grove tree-sit for the last 600-plus days. I’ve had the opportunity to meet members of my community who feel the same way I do about the state of the world, the state of our country, and the state of our city. I’ve been able to see and experience how “police state” and “fascism”—words that I usually associate with some other country in some other time period—are actually a lot closer to home that I thought. The UC Berkeley Police Department, however unprofessional and unreasonable they have been, I now see are quite predictably acting in service of their chancellor and UC Regent masters. -more-

Kids, Alcohol and Science: A Warning to Parents

By Karen Klitz, Laura Menard and Ralph Adams
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:19:00 AM

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first installment of a two-part commentary. The second will run in the coming weeks. -more-

Using Loss to Fuel Gain: My Rent Board Candidacy

By Igor Tregub
Thursday July 31, 2008 - 10:19:00 AM

They say that a loss is an opportunity for gain and that a trial simply fuels the flames of passion. In my case, I have seen what struggle looks like firsthand, in the form of undergoing a forced eviction due to circumstances beyond my control. -more-