The Week

Community members continue to place flowers, cards and soft toys at the intersection of Warring and Derby streets, where the accident happened Friday.
Riya Bhattacharjee
Community members continue to place flowers, cards and soft toys at the intersection of Warring and Derby streets, where the accident happened Friday.
 

News

UC Berkeley Considers Tuition Hike

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Tuesday March 10, 2009 - 04:59:00 PM

UC Berkeley announced plans to institute a 9.3 percent tuition increase to address a state budget crisis that is taking away millions of dollars in public education funding. -more-


Union Concessions Save the Chronicle—For Now

By Richard Brenneman
Tuesday March 10, 2009 - 03:24:00 PM

America has lost another major urban daily paper while newsroom downsizings and cutbacks continue at an unprecedented pace, but the Bay Area’s most famous masthead will stay in print—at least for a while. -more-


Three Arrested in South Campus Stabbing

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Monday March 09, 2009 - 07:37:00 PM

Berkeley police have arrested three men in the stabbing of a UC Berkeley student early Saturday morning in the city’s south campus area. -more-


NASDAQ Strikes Magna From Its Stock Listings

By Richard Brenneman
Monday March 09, 2009 - 07:39:00 PM

The NASDAQ Stock Market, the nation’s leading electronically based stock exchange, is striking Magna Entertainment Co., the owner of Albany’s Golden Gate Fields, from its listings. -more-


AC Transit Board Considers 25-Cent Fare Increase

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Monday March 09, 2009 - 07:40:00 PM

The AC Transit Board of Directors will consider a proposed 25-cent fare increase at its Wednesday evening meeting. -more-


Berkeley City Council to Take Up Cellphone Ordinance Revisions Tuesday

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Monday March 09, 2009 - 07:39:00 PM

The Berkeley City Council is set to consider long-awaited revisions to its Wireless Telecommunications Facilities Ordinance at its regular Tuesday night meeting. However, the change in the rules governing the placement of cellphone tower facilities in the city will fall far short of the demands of some neighborhood groups, or even of the extensive revisions requested by the city’s Planning Commission. -more-


March 23 Special Meeting Begins Housing Plan Update

By Richard Brenneman
Saturday March 07, 2009 - 08:21:00 AM

Berkeley’s Planning Department will begin their mandatory update of the city plan’s housing element on Monday, March 23. -more-


Berkeley Unified to Eliminate More than 100 Teaching Positions

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday March 05, 2009 - 07:41:00 PM

The Berkeley Board of Education voted unanimously Wednesday night to eliminate numerous teaching jobs. -more-


Magna Files For Bankruptcy; Golden Gate Fields to Be Sold

By Richard Brenneman
Thursday March 05, 2009 - 07:42:00 PM

Golden Gate Fields is up for sale as owner Magna Entertainment (MECA on the NASDAQ stock exchange) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy today (Thursday). -more-


Whole Foods Allows Ashby Flowers to Stay

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday March 05, 2009 - 07:17:00 PM

Whole Foods Market announced late Thursday evening that the company has reversed its plans to let the lease expire for its tenant, Ashby Flowers. -more-


UC Students Don Skirts to Protest Assaults

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:01:00 PM
Morgan (left), a college student who was assaulted by the sexual predator targeting young girls wearing skirts, walks down Piedmont Avenue with her friends during a Wednesday afternoon“skirt rally” organized by UC Berkeley students.

Short skirts, long skirts, itsy-bitsy polka-dotted mini skirts, ruffled skirts and pleated skirts, and even a kilt or two took over the steps of Sproul Plaza Wednesday at noon to protest the sexual predator on the UC Berkeley campus who is going around lifting women’s skirts on desolate street corners and dark alleyways. -more-


Civil Suit Opens New Legal Front In Berkeley Sea Scouts Case

By Richard Brenneman
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:02:00 PM

Three young men filed suit Tuesday against the Boy Scouts and their former Berkeley Sea Scouts master, seeking damages for their sexual molestation on board the S.S.S. Farallon. -more-


LeConte Remembers Student Killed in Collision

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:02:00 PM

Community members continued throughout the week to place flowers, candles and notes at the intersection of Derby and Warring streets, where 5-year-old Zachary Cruz was hit and killed by a welder’s truck on Friday, Feb. 27. -more-


Investigation Continues Into Kindergartner’s Death

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:03:00 PM
Zachary Michael Cruz at school last week.

Berkeley police are still investigating the fatal accident of 5-year-old Zachary Cruz, a LeConte Elementary School kindergartner who was struck and killed Friday, Feb. 27, by a contractor’s truck at Warring and Derby streets. -more-


Tragedies Shine Spotlight on Traffic Safety Issues

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:59:00 PM

Two tragic accidents involving Berkeley public school students, occuring within a month of each other, have put a spotlight on traffic safety and improvements. -more-


Berkeley High School Student Arrested for Brandishing Firearm

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:03:00 PM

Berkeley police and Berkeley High School are still investigating a report made by a student Feb. 25 that he had been threatened by another student from the school with a gun or an imitation firearm at the end of the lunch period. -more-


Mayor’s Land Use Donors Topped Dean’s by 18-1

By Richard Brenneman
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:06:00 PM

In last November’s battle of Berkeley mayors, incumbent Tom Bates outspent former Mayor Shirley Dean more than 2 to 1 to win re-election to the post he had won from Dean six years earlier. -more-


German Publisher Buys Berkeley’s Ten Speed Press

By Richard Brenneman
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:05:00 PM

German media giant Bertlesmann bought legendary Berkeley independent publishing house Ten Speed Press Monday through its New York-based publishing unit Random House. -more-


Critics Charge BART Airport Connector Took AC Transit Funds

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:07:00 PM

Despite a crowd of public transit advocates packing last week’s meeting of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, many of them seeking more money for the embattled AC Transit bus agency, MTC Commissioners opted to give the largest single allocation of new federal money to a project to provide BART service between the Coliseum BART Station and the Oakland Airport. -more-


School District Plans Layoffs in Light of State Budget Cuts

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:04:00 PM

Statewide education cuts have forced the Berkeley Unified School District to consider eliminating at least 118 teaching positions in the 2009-2010 school year, district officials announced last week. -more-


Neighbors Share Concerns Over West Berkeley Building Proposal

By Richard Brenneman
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:05:00 PM

The struggle over the size of Wareham Properties’ latest Berkeley project entered a new phase last week with the first public meeting to gather insight for an environmental impact report (EIR). -more-


West Berkeley Zone Changes Linked to UC, Lab Startup Firms

By Richard Brenneman
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:06:00 PM

UC Berkeley, already the instigator of a new plan for downtown Berkeley, is leading the effort to reshape West Berkeley as well. -more-


Former Hancock Aide to Replace Kaplan on AC Transit Board

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:08:00 PM

A divided AC Transit Board chose Oakland corporate attorney and former State Senator Loni Hancock’s campaign field organizer Joel B. Young last week to fill the vacancy left when At-Large Board Member Rebecca Kaplan left for the Oakland City Council. -more-


Police Blotter

By ALI WINSTON
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:07:00 PM

Sexual assaults continue -more-


Toronto Stock Exchange Delists Magna

By Richard Brenneman
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:07:00 PM

Golden Gate Fields moved closer to the auction block Monday when the Toronto Stock Exchange ordered shares of Magna Entertainment removed from its listings. -more-


Opinion

Editorials

Time for a Toady to Go

By Becky O’Malley
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:56:00 PM

It’s the classic old school East Bay greeting: “How ‘bout them A’s?!” Heard at the Oakland Symphony concert on Friday night, a not-so-surprising new variant: “How ‘bout that budget?!” And I knew exactly what he meant: not the disgraceful California model, but the Obama presentation that was all over the front page of the New York Times on Friday. It was a revelation to those of us who have suffered for the last 25 years through the politics of low expectations. -more-


Cartoons

Skirt Rally: Protest or Encouragement?

By Justin DeFreitas
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:05:00 PM

No Child Left Behind, Final Grade

By Justin DeFreitas
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:08:00 PM

Public Comment

Letters to the Editor

Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:56:00 PM

TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT -more-


Where Will All the Flowers Go?

By Conn Hallinan
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:56:00 PM

Ashby Flowers, the tiny store on the southwest corner of Telegraph and Ashby, is one of those places that (you can supply the cliché) “saves your bacon,” “covers your butt,” “salvages a bad moment,” when you suddenly realize that you forgot (take your choice): Valentines’ Day, Mother’s Day, spouse’s birthday, anniversaries, or whatever special moment you need to commerorate with plant life. -more-


Of Mice and Newsmen

By Brian Frederick
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:57:00 PM

The salt marsh harvest mouse is an endangered rodent that lives in the marshes around the San Francisco Bay. Because of development around the Bay Area, the tiny mouse’s existence as a species is now threatened. -more-


Take Back Public Education for Society, Not for Economy

By Sebastian Groot
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:57:00 PM

What is activism at UC Berkeley today? What limits it? What promotes it? What mechanisms challenge and shape the way we interact with problems in our world? Is sending an e-mail letter to a politician a form of activism or pressing support for a social cause on Facebook or attending an hour-long rally? -more-


The Daily Planet: An Appreciation and an Appeal for Support

By Richard Fabry
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:57:00 PM

I’ve been especially monitoring the letters and commentaries since the O’Malleys have made public their need for financial support from the community for their newspaper. -more-


Is Obama Going ‘All the Way with LBJ’?

By James K. Sayre
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:58:00 PM

Is President Obama trying to copy the failed notions of President Lyndon Baines Johnson, with his policies of “guns and butter,” as he pursued social progress on the domestic front and imperialism abroad (wars on Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos). By the time President Johnson was driven from office in the presidential primary elections in early 1968, his record and his legacy were left in shambles. -more-


Columns

Dispatches From The Edge: Ethnic Cleansing and Israel

By Conn Hallinan
Friday March 06, 2009 - 11:14:00 AM

One of the more disturbing developments in the Middle East is a growing consensus among Israelis that it would be acceptable to expel—in the words of advocates, “transfer”—its Arab citizens to either an as-yet-unformed Palestinian state or the neighboring countries of Jordan and Egypt. -more-


Undercurrents: Oscar Grant Movement Struggles with Tactics, Goals

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Friday March 06, 2009 - 11:15:00 AM

About a half-hour before the scheduled Oscar Grant march and rally in Grant’s hometown of Hayward last week, Hayward police in full riot gear set up a blockade line in front of the City Hall building. Across the street at the Hayward BART station, where protesters were gathering, a group of early teen Latino boys were bouncing around at the edge of the sidewalk, periodically shouting “Fuck the police!” at the officers lined up across the way. Well, not actually shouting it. In fact, they seemed at great pains to make sure that while their friends and some of the protesters heard what they were saying, the police did not. -more-


Green Neighbors: Finding the Boogeymen in the Bushes

By Ron Sullivan
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:04:00 PM
Baxter Creek’s understory of willow and ceanothus. Scary, huh?

When Lisa Owens Viani summoned spirits (and bodies) from the vasty deep of bureaucracy, they showed up. Furthermore, they made specific promises. -more-


East Bay Then and Now: When Berkeley’s Home Street Was a Street of Homes

By Daniella Thompson
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:02:00 PM
1930 Walnut St. was built in 1905 as a two-family rental property.

At the heart of Berkeley’s downtown, behind the commercial facades of University Avenue, stands a cluster of four century-old residential buildings. Shoppers at Berkeley Hardware who park next to these relics may pause and wonder about them occasionally. -more-


About the House: Cooperative Housing—Not Just for Hippies Anymore

By Matt Cantor
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:03:00 PM

I could be handy mending a fuse -more-


Arts & Events

Arts Calendar

Monday March 09, 2009 - 10:01:00 AM

THURSDAY, MARCH 5 -more-


Berkeley Opera Stages ‘Tales of Hoffman’

By Jaime Robles Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:58:00 PM

It’s little wonder that E.T.A. Hoffmann was one of the Romantic era’s favorite and most influential writers—parts of his long fantastic stories can be found in many of the operas and ballets of the time from Delibes to Tchaikovsky to Offenbach. Recognizing a cultural force when he saw one, Papa Freud used Hoffmann’s work as the basis for his essay on the uncanny, “Das Unheimliche.” -more-


Alameda’s Altarena Playhouse Presents ‘Gypsy’

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:00:00 PM

The band in the loft at Altarena Playhouse strikes up the overture with the head for “Everything’s Coming Up Roses.” The curtain is ready to rise on Gypsy, opening with the auditions for a kiddie show in Seattle. This musical is all about being onstage and backstage, featuring the most relentless stage mother of them all. -more-


Daily Planet Forum Features Author David Bacon

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:58:00 PM

David Bacon, Berkeley-based labor journalist, photographer, KPFA radio commentator and Daily Planet contributor, will speak on his book, Illegal People—How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants (Beacon, 2008), followed by a discussion and book signing, at the first Berkeley Daily Planet Book Forum, at 7 p.m. Sunday, March 8 at the Hillside Club, 2286 Cedar St. Admission is free. The event is co-sponsored by the Hillside Club and Black Oak Books, along with the Planet. -more-


Other Minds 14th New Music Festival this Weekend

Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:58:00 PM

Other Minds—the 14th New Music festival founded by former KPFA programmer Charles Amirkhanian—presents three evenings of diversity and depth in contemporary music, beginning tonight (Thursday) at 8 p.m. through Saturday at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco’s Kanbar Hall, 3200 California St., with such legends of New Music as Ben Johnston, John Schneider, Chinary Ung and other composers and musicians from Brazil, Canada, Poland, Argentina, Estonia, including Michael Harrison, collaborator with Terry Riley and La Monte Young. Panels with the artists start at 7 p.m. Tickets: $25; festival passes: $60-150 (415) 292-1233 or otherminds.org -more-


New Century Chamber Orchestra Presents ‘Glory of Russia’

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:00:00 PM

The New Century Chamber Orchestra will present The Glory of Russia, a program of Prokofiev’s Visions Fugitives, Op. 22, featuring pianist Anne-Marie McDermott; Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in C minor, Op. 35, featuring McDermott and trumpeter Adam Luftman; and Tchaikovsky’s Souvenir de Florence, Friday at Berkeley’s First Congregational Church. -more-


‘What the Women Say’ Poetry and Performance

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:00:00 PM

Golden Thread Productions, the Bay Area’s specialists in theater and other performances exploring Middle Eastern identity, will co-present, with Sunbula: Arab Feminists for Change, and ASWAT Bay Area Arab Music Ensemble, “What the Women Say” their annual evening of poetry and performance for International Women’s Day on Sunday, dedicated this year to the women of Gaza, featuring poetry by Deema Shehabi and Dina Omar, a staged reading of the blog writings of Majeda Al Saqqa from Gaza and a performance by Al-Juthoor dance company at La Pena Cultural Center. -more-


Daily Planet Forum Features Author David Bacon

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:01:00 PM

David Bacon, Berkeley-based labor journalist, photographer, KPFA radio commentator and Daily Planet contributor, will speak on his book, Illegal People—How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants (Beacon, 2008), followed by a discussion and book signing, at the first Berkeley Daily Planet Book Forum, at 7 p.m. Sunday, March 8 at the Hillside Club, 2286 Cedar St. Admission is free. The event is co-sponsored by the Hillside Club and Black Oak Books, along with the Planet. -more-


Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival This Weekend

Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 06:59:00 PM

Just an hour up the road in Sonoma County, the Sebastopol Center for the Arts presents the second annual Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival this weekend, March 6-8. -more-


Around the East Bay: Other Minds

Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:01:00 PM

Other Minds—the 14th New Music festival founded by former KPFA programmer Charles Amirkhanian—presents three evenings of diversity and depth in contemporary music, beginning tonight (Thursday) at 8 p.m. through Saturday at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco’s Kanbar Hall, 3200 California St., with such legends of New Music as Ben Johnston, John Schneider, Chinary Ung and other composers and musicians from Brazil, Canada, Poland, Argentina, Estonia, including Michael Harrison, collaborator with Terry Riley and La Monte Young. Panels with the artists start at 7 p.m. Tickets: $25; festival passes: $60-150 (415) 292-1233 or otherminds.org -more-


East Bay Then and Now: When Berkeley’s Home Street Was a Street of Homes

By Daniella Thompson
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:02:00 PM
1930 Walnut St. was built in 1905 as a two-family rental property.

At the heart of Berkeley’s downtown, behind the commercial facades of University Avenue, stands a cluster of four century-old residential buildings. Shoppers at Berkeley Hardware who park next to these relics may pause and wonder about them occasionally. -more-


About the House: Cooperative Housing—Not Just for Hippies Anymore

By Matt Cantor
Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:03:00 PM

I could be handy mending a fuse -more-


Community Calendar

Wednesday March 04, 2009 - 07:08:00 PM

THURSDAY, MARCH 5 -more-