AGAINST FORGETTING: Occupy: You Can't Evict an Idea

By Ruth Rosen
Monday December 12, 2011 - 05:55:00 PM

As snowstorms and freezing rain announce the arrival of winter, it’s hard to remember that the Occupy Wall Street movement emerged just a few months ago, in September. Enraged by the government bailout of Wall Street, but not of those who had lost their jobs and homes, angry at the rise of university tuition, frightened by the precarious decline of the middle class, several generations---not only the young--- began a movement that quickly spread from Zuccotti park in New York across the nation. “We are the 99%,” they chanted, until it became the slogan of the movement. The 1%, they explained, owned as much wealth as the rest of the population. -more-

Eclectic Rant: Abolish the Death Penalty, Replace With Life Without Parole

By Ralph E. Stone
Friday December 09, 2011 - 04:34:00 PM

The death penalty should be abolished in the United States because life without parole is more humane, less discriminatory, and a less costly alternative – and it avoids the risk of executing an innocent person. -more-

THE PUBLIC EYE: Elizabeth Warren: Voice of the 99 Percent

By Bob Burnett
Friday December 09, 2011 - 02:56:00 PM

Wednesday evening, December 7th, senatorial candidate Elizabeth Warren met with Bay Area progressives. Some of us recalled a comparable meeting four years earlier with presidential candidate Barack Obama. At the time Obama was a rising star; now Warren is the rising star. While the two have similarities, there is one crucial difference. -more-

SENIOR POWER…It’s Called Gray divorce.

By Helen Rippier Wheeler
Friday December 09, 2011 - 03:16:00 PM

Famous and infamous, great and not so great. Divorce quotes abound… -more-

WILD NEIGHBORS: Deception on the Lek

BY Joe Eaton
Wednesday December 07, 2011 - 12:39:00 PM
Resident Male Ruff

This is the last of what turned into a series on the female impersonators of the animal kingdom: males that temporarily or permanently mimic the females of their respective species to enhance their mating opportunities. Cuttlefish do it, as do isopods, a whole slew of fish, one snake, a couple of lizards, and at least two birds. (If the phenomenon occurs among mammals, I haven’t located any examples.) One of the birds is the western marsh-harrier, in which 40 percent of males have female-typical plumage and are not recognized as rivals by “normal” males. The other, better-known species is the ruff (Philomachus pugnax), which has a much more complicated arrangement. The Latin name translates as “combative battle-lover.” -more-

MY COMMONPLACE BOOK: (a diary of excerpts copied from printed books, with comments added by the reader.)

By Dorothy Bryant
Tuesday December 06, 2011 - 01:18:00 PM

Nothing makes you hate people as much as knowing in your heart that you are in the wrong and they are in the right. — Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize-winning economist, author, in his NY Times column, Sept. 3, 2004 -more-


By Jack Bragen
Tuesday December 06, 2011 - 09:29:00 AM

I have been writing this column for the Planet for about a year, and have covered a lot of territory about the plight and the needs of persons with mental illness. I have reached a point where it feels like it is time to do something else with my writing career. -more-