The Week

Oliver Williamson accepts the congratulations of a colleague in a morning phone call.
Steve McConnell / UC Berkeley
Oliver Williamson accepts the congratulations of a colleague in a morning phone call.
 

News

UC Students, Nader Hold Second Teach-In

By Richard Brenneman
Monday October 19, 2009 - 04:48:00 PM

UC Berkeley students held a second teach-in on Friday, protesting budget cuts, staff reductions and the increasing dependence of public education on corporate funds. -more-


Judge Grants Change of Venue in Mehserle Murder Case

Bay City News
Friday October 16, 2009 - 04:08:00 PM

Alameda County Superior Court Judge Morris Jacobson today granted a defense motion to move former BART police Officer Johannes Mehserle’s murder trial away from the county because of the extensive publicity his case has received. -more-


West Berkeley Land Battle Heats Up Near Finish Line

By Richard Brenneman
Friday October 16, 2009 - 04:04:00 PM

With the battle over West Berkeley zoning nearing an end, planning commissioners Wednesday night focused on the list of uses that would be allowed in areas where they had been previously barred. Acting under orders from the City Council majority, the commission has been hammering out a list of uses and definitions which could change the face of the city’s only haven for industry, manufacturing and artisans. -more-


Ferry Plans Steam Ahead

By Richard Brenneman
Friday October 16, 2009 - 11:28:00 AM

The ferry is coming to Berkeley. WETA—the Water Emergency Transportation Authority—gave planning commissioners a Wednesday night update on its plans to build a new ferry terminal just south of the fishing pier at the Berkeley Marina. -more-


Carjacker’s Blood Leads to Arrest Months Later

By Richard Brenneman
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 02:02:00 PM

When a Whole Foods shopper stabbed a would-be carjacker with a pair of scissors, she did more than fend him off: She inadvertently collected the DNA that would lead to an arrest. -more-


UC Berkeley Econ Prof Wins Nobel Prize

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:27:00 PM

UC Berkeley professor Oliver E. Williamson was awarded the 2009 Nobel Prize in Economics Monday, Oct. 5, along with Indiana University professor Elinor Ostrom for their work in organizational economics. -more-


City Starts Swine Flu Vaccinations

Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:42:00 PM

The City of Berkeley received its first shipment of intranasal H1N1 vaccine from the state Tuesday, Oct. 6, the same day it administered more than 2,000 seasonal flu vaccines to the public. -more-


Berkeley Law Students Launch Torture Accountability Initiative

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:48:00 PM

A group of UC Berkeley law students launched a torture accountability initiative Tuesday, Oct. 13, dedicated to holding the authors of the infamous Bush torture memos accountable, reinstating respect for the prohibition against torture and ending executive abuse of power and impunity. -more-


City College Students, Faculty, Staff Protest Budget Cuts

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:49:00 PM
A Berkeley Community College classified employee speaks out against state budget cuts at Thursday's meeting in the BCC atrium.

Berkeley City College students, faculty and staff joined their counterparts at Laney and Merritt colleges to speak out against state budget cuts to public education at the Peralta Board of Trustees meeting in Oakland Oct. 13. -more-


Partisan Position: Courthouse Athletic Club Demolished, Oakland-Style

By Bob Brokl
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:50:00 PM
The Courthouse Atheltic Club at 2935 Telegraph Ave. in Oakland was demolished Oct. 2.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story inaugurates a new Planet category, Partisan Position. It’s not always possible for staff reporters to cover all the news our readers would like to know about, so we’re soliciting submissions from writers who have a personal interest in stories they want to report. We ask them to try to include all relevant information and various points of view, but the Partisan Position warning label tells readers that the story they’re reading might not be completely impartial. -more-


Berkeley Unified Gets Emergency Preparedness Grant

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:56:00 PM

Berkeley Unified School District announced Wednesday that it has been awarded a $250,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Education to boost emergency management plans in its schools. -more-


Grassroots House Celebrates 40 Years

By Lydia Gans Special to the Planet
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:58:00 PM
Grassroots House members, from left John Selawsky, Henry Norr, Jane Welford, Maya Drooker, Emma Coleman, Andrea Pritchett, Sean Gallager.

There are probably few progressive people in Berkeley who have never had occasion to visit the Grassroots House in the 40 years since its establishment as a community space. This Sunday afternoon the house is throwing a party, promising great food and entertainment—and a pitch for much-needed donations. -more-


Berkeley Quake Preparations Set Pace for Bay Area

By Richard Brenneman
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:57:00 PM

Anyone over age 25 or so who lived in or near the Bay Area on Oct. 17, 1989, probably remembers where they were at 5:04 p.m. -more-


Council Takes No Action on Cell Tower Ordinance

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:51:00 PM

In one of its briefest meetings in recent memory, the Berkeley City Council deferred staff action on revamping the city’s cellphone tower ordinance Tuesday night, saying that city staff already had too many projects to work on. -more-


Ray of Hope Leads AC Transit to Delay Bus Line Cuts

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:56:00 PM

The financially embattled AC Transit Bus District, which only two weeks ago decided to risk delay or possible abandonment of its long-planned, signature Bus Rapid Transit project in order to hold off some of its painful January bus service and personnel cuts, saw a glimmer of hope this week that it might be able to keep BRT essentially on track while preventing the worst of the cuts. -more-


Campus Briefs Community on Downtown Lab Project

By Richard Brenneman
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:57:00 PM

With a downtown UC Berkeley biofuel lab on the fast track for development, university officials are busily presenting their plans to the community. -more-


Governor Opposes Point Molate Casino Project

By Richard Brenneman
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:57:00 PM

The Office of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced Monday that it wants to terminate the Point Molate casino project. -more-


First Person: Present at the Re-Creation: Memories of Loma Prieta

By Bill Zarchy
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:59:00 PM

October 17, 1989, 5:09 pm -more-


Opinion

Editorials

Staying on the Path to Peace

By Becky O’Malley
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:01:00 PM

On Saturday morning I wasn’t even out of bed before my family started demanding that I write to someone about the snarky way the newsies have been commenting on Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize. I’m the designated writer in a family of opinionated people, and it seems they’re all mad about this one. -more-


Public Comment

Letters to the Editor

Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:02:00 PM

CAMPAIGN MONEY -more-


Animal Shelter: Still A Doggone Dilemma

By Jill Posener
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:03:00 PM
Stray chihuahua-terrier mix in the kennels at Berkeley Animal Care Services.

It shouldn’t be complicated to build a new animal shelter. In 2002 the voters of Berkeley passed Measure I, the bond measure to fund the construction of a new shelter. Finding an appropriate site has been far harder than persuading the voters of the validity of this cause. -more-


Happy Birthday, China

By Marvin Chachere
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:04:00 PM

A mere 14 months after China dazzled the world with spectacular opening and closing ceremonies for the XXIX Olympiad it threw a comparably stupendous birthday party for itself. Official festivities lasted eight days and although it was not an invitation-only affair it drew very little attention in our dominant media. I am writing to share the thrill of seeing what I filched from the Internet and from television’s fringe channels. -more-


Iran and the New US Bunker Buster Bomb

By Kenneth J. Theisen
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:04:00 PM

The U.S. is determined to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. President Obama has said he will “do everything” to stop this. U.S. officials have repeatedly said that no options will be taken off the table, implying that war against Iran is an option. The U.S. has repeatedly claimed that Iran is using its nuclear energy program as a cover for obtaining nukes. We hear this refrain despite the lack of any real evidence and despite the U.S.’s own National Intelligence Estimate and various statements of the International Atomic Energy Administration (IAEA) that there is no evidence that Iran has a nuclear weapons program. -more-


Berkeley Does Not Need a Charter School

By Priscilla Myrick
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:07:00 PM

I agree with the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action (BAMN) that Berkeley does not need another a charter school (“Activists Protest City’s Proposed Charter School,” Oct. 8-14). Besides the paramount issue that a BUSD charter school would “codify separate and inferior education” for black and Latino students, a BUSD-sponsored charter school will tap into limited public resources in terms of facilities, parcel taxes and state money intended for Berkeley public school students. A charter school is open to any student in California. In the current economic environment BUSD public education is already being short-changed. Why siphon off scarce resources?  -more-


Like a Fish Needs a Bicycle

By Dave Blake
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:05:00 PM

A decade ago downtown developer Patrick Kennedy regularly explained to the Zoning Adjustments Board that we needed to approve his use-every-inch projects because it was just that kind of density that produced Paris. That argument disappeared once Kennedy started building seven-plus story buildings; Paris, except for a relatively small and contained office park, is comprised almost exclusively of six-story or smaller buildings. -more-


Beyond UC vs. Sacramento: It’s Relationships That Matter

By Hillary Violet Lehr
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:08:00 PM

While UC administrators blame the state government in Sacramento for recent cuts in funding, the top echelons of UC are part of the same web of political nepotism and short-sighted anti-tax idolatry damaging the State’s public services and infrastructure. -more-


Don’t Let the University Interfere with Your Education

By Eugene E. Ruyle
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:07:00 PM

As a UC Berkeley alumnus and emeritus CSU faculty member (Long Beach), I strongly support the Oct. 24 Mobilizing Conference to Save Public Education and urge all UC, CSU, community college, and K-12 students, workers, teachers, and their organizations to participate in this movement. -more-


In Response to Fouda on Israel-Palestine

By Janna Sundeyeva
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:03:00 PM

Hassan Fouda in his Oct. 8 Commentary about Gaza tries to show that he cares about human being, about children and civilians. Nice intention. -more-


A Few Facts Concerning Olmert

By Jim Harris
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:04:00 PM

“The undersigned therefore take this means of publicly presenting a few salient facts concerning Begin and his party; and of urging all concerned not to support this latest manifestation of fascism.” -more-


KPFA: A Response

By Henry Norr
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:57:00 PM

In his discussion of “What’s at Stake in the KPFA Board Election?” Matthew Hallinan starts out on the right track: there really are important substantive differences between the group he’s part of—the Concerned Listeners (CL)—and just about everyone else involved in the election, including not only the ticket I’m on—Independents for Community Radio—but also the other two slates in the race for the Local Station Board.  -more-


Columns

Dispatches From The Edge: Afghanistan: ‘We Deeply Regret . . .’

By Conn Hallinan
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:00:00 PM

“We deeply regret” are words that almost always end with something terrible. They were uttered by German Defense Minister Franz Joseph Jung in the wake of a Sept. 4 air strike that left upwards of 100 Afghans dead. He followed it with a boilerplate that invariably makes such apologies suspect: “We had reliable intelligence that our soldiers were in danger.” -more-


UnderCurrents: Loma Prieta: How You Miss History While in the Midst of It

By J. Douglas Allen-Taylor
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:00:00 PM

Though I was in the Bay Area in October of 1989, I missed Loma Prieta. The shaking part of it, that is. -more-


Green Neighbors: Workshops for Tree People on Sudden Oak Death

By Ron Sullivan
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:29:00 PM
UC tree scientist Matteo Garbelotto held his Oct. 7 SOD workshop under an oak near Tolman Hall. Tree owners, arborists, media reps, birds, and this squirrel attended.

Lots of rain already! Good news vis-à-vis fire season, maybe bad news for our oaks. Sudden Oak Death (SOD) watchers worry that if this is an El Niño winter with lots of rain, the disease already devastating some of our keystone oak species will spread farther and faster. -more-


East Bay Then and Now: Lucky Baldwin’s Heiress Once ‘Slummed’ in Berkeley

By Daniella Thompson
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:41:00 PM
17 Plaza Drive, built for Anita Baldwin and Hull McClaughry in 1909.

Elias Jackson “Lucky” Baldwin (1828-1909) was one of California’s most storied individuals. Crossing the plains by wagon train in 1853, Baldwin quickly made his name as a shrewd entrepreneur. By his early 40s, he had become a fabled Comstock millionaire. In the mid-1870s, he opened San Francisco’s legendary Baldwin Hotel and Theatre on the corner of Market and Powell Streets, current site of the Flood Building. -more-


Arts & Events

Arts Calendar

Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:13:00 PM

THURSDAY, OCT. 15 -more-


Ragged Wing Builds on Greek Tragedy

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:09:00 PM

Oh how I wish that an embargo -more-


Jewish Music Fest Spotlights Work Composed in Nazi Camps

By Ken Bullock Sepcial to the Planet
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:11:00 PM
They Left a Light, Susan Waterfall’s multimedia program of music composed in Nazi prison camps.

They Left a Light, Susan Waterfall’s multimedia program of music composed in Nazi prison camps, will be presented this Sunday at 7:30 p.m. at the East Bay Jewish Community Center on Walnut in North Berkeley for the 25th annual Jewish Music Festival. including Olivier Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time, composed in 1940 at a P.O.W. camp in Silesia, and rare selections of music composed by Jewish musicians at Terezin (Thereisenstadt) concentration camp north of Prague. This will be the second year Waterfall and the Mendocino Music Festival have collaborated with the Jewish Music Festival, after last year’s Degenerate Music, music of the Weimar Republic and German emigration, condemned by Hitler as “degenerate art.” -more-


Dancing with ‘Dead Boys’ at Zellerbach

By Ken Bullock Sepcial to the Planet
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:12:00 PM

Waking up in your own bed, but under the bare, spreading arms of a tree, to a bare-chested dancer and a chorus of singer-dancers could be an unnerving experience. -more-


Joana Carneiro Debuts as Berkeley Symphony Director

By Ken Bullock Special to the Planet
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:13:00 PM

“Music has been really a part of my imagination since I was very young,” said Joana Carneiro. “When I was 9, I told my parents I wanted to be a conductor. And they thought it was absolutely the right idea. There was something attractive to me in the figure of the conductor. And on the Christmas after that, I was given my first baton!” -more-


Around the East Bay: Angela Dean-Barham at the Belluevue Club

Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:14:00 PM
Angela Dean-Barham

Angela Dean-Barham, who sang a distinguished Betty Shabazz in Anthony Davis’ opera X, about Malcolm X, a few years back at Oakland Metro Opera Theatre, will perform her absorbing solo show, The Unsung Diva : The Life and Times of Siserietta Jones, aka The Black Patti, relating the life and singing song excerpts from the career of the African-American opera star of the Gilded Age, for the 80th anniversary celebration of the Belluevue Club on Lake Merritt in Oakland, this Sunday afternoon at 4 p.m., with dinner and cocktails to follow. $12 members, $14 general for show; $30 buffet and show. 451-1000 or reception@bellevueclub.org -more-


Around the East Bay: Sonic Harvest

Thursday October 15, 2009 - 01:08:00 PM

Sonic Harvest ’09, previously known as Harvest of Song, will celebrate their ninth season this Saturday and Sunday at 7:30 p.m. with Allen Shearer’s “brief but droll opera,” A Very Large Mole, featuring Claudia Stevens’ libretto after Kafka, conducted by Jonathan Khuner; the premiere of Peter Josheff’s Caught Between Two Worlds; three poems by Dorothy Cary; excerpts from a new opera by Ann Callaway; and music by Herb Bielawa and Mark Secosh, played by musicians including Tod Brody on flute, Mark Teicholz on guitar; Jerry Kuderna on piano—and many others. Berkeley Art Center, 1275 Walnut St. $15-$20; 654-8651. http://sonicharvest.org. -more-


East Bay Then and Now: Lucky Baldwin’s Heiress Once ‘Slummed’ in Berkeley

By Daniella Thompson
Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:41:00 PM
17 Plaza Drive, built for Anita Baldwin and Hull McClaughry in 1909.

Elias Jackson “Lucky” Baldwin (1828-1909) was one of California’s most storied individuals. Crossing the plains by wagon train in 1853, Baldwin quickly made his name as a shrewd entrepreneur. By his early 40s, he had become a fabled Comstock millionaire. In the mid-1870s, he opened San Francisco’s legendary Baldwin Hotel and Theatre on the corner of Market and Powell Streets, current site of the Flood Building. -more-


Community Calendar

Thursday October 15, 2009 - 12:58:00 PM

THURSDAY, OCT. 15 -more-