Opinion

Editorials

Sarah Palin Fails Her Most Important Job

By Becky O’Malley
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:30:00 AM

What’s a feminist to think? In my youth, people talked about trying to figure out the “standard liberal position” on a controversial issue. Later on, “liberal” got to be a no-no word as the hip left competed to see who could be more radical than thou. “Politically correct” was used without irony for a season or two among those who had an old left background, only to acquire a sarcastic edge among the rest of the left who distrusted the verities of previous eras. The compromise word de jour seems to be “progressive”—it’s a word even Republicans have been known to use. -more-


Cartoons

GOP Hiding Behind Skirts with VP Choice

By Justin DeFreitas
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 12:26:00 PM

Storming the New Camelot

By Justin DeFreitas
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 12:26:00 PM

Public Comment

Letters to the Editor

Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:30:00 AM

RECKLESS -more-


Letters to the Editor

Monday September 08, 2008 - 12:59:00 PM

OAK GROVE -more-


What I Learned in Denver

By Randy Shaw
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:31:00 AM

The last day of the Democratic Convention at Mile High Stadium was an extraordinary occasion that transcended politics and became almost spiritual. I have never been part of such a public event—political or not—and doubt whether an equivalent happening has ever occurred in the United States or will soon be repeated. The crowd at Mile High mirrored the nation: It was overwhelmingly working and middle-class, racially diverse, and appeared to comprise those viscerally impacted by the convention’s focus on restoring the American Dream. In the days prior to Mile High I forswore the talked-about parties and spent 10 hours each day talking to hundreds of delegates, supporters and activists. I saw how artists were engaged with the Obama campaign, gained a deeper understanding of the Democratic Party’s New West revival, got a reality check on the alleged Clinton-Obama rift, and was told why Mitt Romney’s anticipated selection as running mate would really help McCain. Most of all, my experience strengthened my feeling that something very special is occurring in 2008 that will have significance far beyond November. -more-


A Call to Bring Sunshine to Berkeley

By Terry Francke and Shirley Dean
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:31:00 AM

We all want and expect to know what is going on in our government, yet history shows that we rarely achieve this goal. Whether it’s in City Hall, Sacramento or Washington, we are angry when we find out that action was taken on the flimsiest of information and decisions were made behind closed doors that profoundly affect our lives, and we have had no chance to know about it, let alone add our two cents. That’s the very opposite of democracy and our system of representative government no matter where it occurs or when it happens. It cannot be denied that no one can represent the people when the people don’t know what their representative is doing and the representative doesn’t know how the people feel. -more-


A Few Examples of the Success of Advisories

By Karen Hemphill
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:32:00 AM

I want to start by correcting an inaccurate statement made in Peter Kuhn’s letter to the editor. The School Board did not vote against implementing an advisory program at Berkeley High School (BHS). The School Board did not take any action. The presentation on advisories that Mr. Kuhn is referring to was given to the board for comment so that BHS staff would have a framework to develop an advisory proposal that would represent the best approach to address the needs for all BHS students. At that meeting, Board members, including myself, stressed the need for the high school to develop an advisory proposal that included specific expectations, detailed curriculum and activities, and methods for accountability/evaluation. Only with this information, can the School Board competently vote on whether to approve advisories at Berkeley High. While I personally believe that some type of advisory program is needed throughout BHS to provide a more personal and consistent connection between students, teachers, and parents, I will not support advisories without having such a detailed understanding of the purpose, content, and expected outcomes of advisories. I understand and share concerns that good intentions do not necessarily result in good deeds. But, it greatly disturbs me to read that some people are taking public positions against advisories without even having seen an actual completed proposal. -more-


Stem Cells in California — How Have They Fared Over the Past Four Years?

By Raymond Barglow
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:32:00 AM

Science begins in human wonder before the immensity and complexity of the natural world, but then becomes appropriated by social interests that apply its discoveries in humane as well as inhumane ways. So we are right to pay attention to the ethics that underly the development of new technologies. One of the most promising, but also one of the most controversial scientific applications today is the use of stem cells to help us understand and remedy terrible illnesses. -more-


White, Black / Neither, Both

By Marvin Chachere
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:33:00 AM

Nothing distinguishes America from other nations as markedly as the place held by involuntary immigrants from Africa and their descendants. -more-


Green Goals Toward the American Dream

By Willi Paul
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:33:00 AM

The American Dream is fracturing and defragmenting: corporate consolidations, privatization and capricious war making are creating a new rich class and killing citizen soldiers daily. Fifty percent of marriages in America end in divorce. Congress is a ship of fools. Our bridges are falling down. -more-


City Website’s Landmarks Map Laden with Inaccuracies

By John English
Thursday September 04, 2008 - 09:34:00 AM

During frequent visits to the Planning Palace on Milvia I’ve enjoyed glimpsing, just a block away from it, our very historic Old City Hall (also known as the Maudelle Shirek Building). But very recently while casually Internet surfing, I got a rude shock when I opened the “City of Berkeley Designated Landmarks” map that’s proudly on display in the “map room” part of the Planning and Development Department’s website. According to that map and its legend, Old City Hall is a landmark that’s been “demolished”! -more-