The Week

The underside of the concrete slabs on the underside of the Berkeley pier show concrete spalling and deteriorating rebar, visible as horizontal brownish streaks.
Steven Finacom
The underside of the concrete slabs on the underside of the Berkeley pier show concrete spalling and deteriorating rebar, visible as horizontal brownish streaks.


AROUND AND ABOUT: Berkeley Period Instrument Musicians Start Up First valley of the Moon Music Festival, July 18-August 2

Ken Bullock
Thursday July 16, 2015 - 09:15:00 AM

Cellist Tanya Tomkins—co-founder of the new Valley of the Moon Music Festival, starting this weekend at Hanna Boys Center in Sonoma, the only festival in the U. S. featuring Classical and Romantic chamber music played on period instruments—recalls when she was "studying and performing in Holland, years ago" she heard the Orchestra of the 18th Century play "a very familiar" Mozart symphony on period instruments. -more-

Berkeley City Council Adopts New Balcony Codes

Scott Morris (BCN)
Wednesday July 15, 2015 - 02:19:00 PM

The Berkeley City Council unanimously passed new standards for construction of outdoor balconies Tuesday night in response to findings that severe dry rot likely caused the deadly collapse of an apartment balcony last month. -more-

New: California State Assembly Committee Rejects Hancock Proposal for Contractor Disclosure Prompted by Berkeley Balcony Collapse

Scott Morris (BCN)
Wednesday July 15, 2015 - 10:19:00 AM

A state Assembly committee this morning voted down proposed state legislation, drafted in response to a balcony collapse that killed six people in Berkeley last month, that would require greater settlement disclosure by contractors. -more-

New: Deforesting the East Bay Hills

Cecile Pineda, conservation writer
Wednesday July 15, 2015 - 09:57:00 AM

Surely there’s a better way for Oakland Parks, which charge ghetto youth up to $90 a year to shoot a few hoops, to spend FEMA's bribe of 6 million dollars than by clearcutting the East Bay Hills from Wildcat Canyon south to Piedmont Pines and Redwood Regional Park (see -more-

Getting Rid of Library Books: a Rebuttal to the Berkeley Library Director

Roya Arasteh and nine colleagues
Monday July 13, 2015 - 11:05:00 PM

There is an art to every profession, and librarianship is no exception. Part of a library’s responsibility to its community is to cultivate a book collection. Berkeley is an especially diverse, dynamic, well-read community that values books, and demands a great depth and breadth in its library collection, different from your ‘average’ U.S. city. Indeed, this is one of the reasons people flock here.

Part of the art of librarianship is to “weed” or “cull” items from the collection. No one disputes this necessity. A recent (June 23, 2015 ( ) Library Journal article, “The Art of Weeding: Collection Management,” states: “You can’t make weeding decisions solely off of paper {i.e. statistics}. Things circulate that shouldn’t. Things don’t circulate that should. Old things should be considered on an individual basis, not weeded simply because they are old.” It’s too bad the Berkeley Public Library Director and Collection Development Manager have decided that every book that has not been checked-out in three years must go (reprieve for art and music books to 10 years). -more-

New: What's to Become of Berkeley's Shattuck Cinemas? Film at 11

Monday July 13, 2015 - 11:00:00 PM

Here's a little ditty from Berkeley film-maker Don Goldmacher to worry anyone who likes to go to the movies in Berkeley, featuring SF Mime Troupe favorite Ed Holmes and a cast of tens. -more-

New: West Berkeley Air Quality Meeting Skipped: An Open Letter to Mayor Bates and City Council Members,

Janice Schroeder and Christopher Kroll, West Berkeley Alliance for Clean Air and Safe Jobs
Monday July 13, 2015 - 10:28:00 PM

The West Berkeley Alliance for Clean Air and Safe Jobs (Alliance) is appalled at the lack of transparency, accountability and respect Council members Linda Maio and Lori Droste have shown the West Berkeley community since the January 20th city council meeting when Council members Maio and Droste were tasked with gathering information about West Berkeley air quality and reporting back to the city council within three months.

The Alliance repeatedly asked that Council member Maio and Droste hold a democratic community meet ing in West Berkeley to hear community concerns regarding West Berkeley air quality, and to share their findings with the entire West Berkeley community before reporting back to the council. These requests have been repeatedly ignored. In fact, Council member Maio just sent a District 1 email to her constituents notifying us of the highlights of the final council meeting tomorrow night. No mention was made of West Berkeley Industry Item 69, or West Berkeley air quality in the District 1 announcement. -more-

New: Vacancy rates and Tuesday's Housing Nexus workshop

Monday July 13, 2015 - 06:15:00 PM

On Tuesday, July 14th, at 6:00 pm, in the City Council Chambers is a workshop to discuss the updated Affordable Housing Nexus Study authored by BAE, Bay Area Economics. This is the report that will help determine mitigation fees for affordable housing development. To determine the City's current "3.1%" vacancy rate, BAE considered only 9 buildings, each with more than 50 units, built between 2001 and 2012, a total of 1054 units. This doesn't reflect any older units or smaller buildings, the majority of rentals in Berkeley. When using a small statistical sample, in this case around 2% of Berkeley households, care must be taken for the sample to be random and represent the whole of the population. A much better, free, reliable, and unquestionably standard resource for this type of statistic is the US Census Bureau. -more-

New: Deteriorating Berkeley Pier May Need Major, Costly Repairs

Steven Finacom,Special to The Planet
Friday July 10, 2015 - 11:30:00 AM
The Berkeley Pier.  Children in a Trackers Earth Bay Area program, "Fishing on the Dock of the Bay", learn to fish from the Pier.  Deterioration of the concrete deck slabs is a new source of concern for City of Berkeley staff.

The Berkeley Pier faces some major issues of structural deterioration which may be costly to fix, City of Berkeley staff told the Berkeley Parks and Waterfront Commission Wednesday night, July 8, 2015. -more-

New: Three Men Ordered to Stand Trial for Berkeley Murder

Jeff Shuttleworth (BCN)
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 08:26:00 PM

A judge has ruled that prosecutors produced sufficient evidence to have three men stand trial on murder charges for the shooting death of a Pinole man in Berkeley in December during a marijuana deal that went wrong. -more-

New: Berkeley City Clerk's Office Refuses to Accept Appeal of ZAB'S EIR Certification for Harold Way Project

Steven Finacom
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 05:37:00 PM
City Clerk Mark Numainville (standing) looks at an appeal brought on July 8 to the Clerk's Office by Kelly Hammargren (seated) of the Sustainable Berkeley Coalition while other City Clerk staff stand in the background.  Hammargren was told by the Clerk that she would not be allowed to file the appeal that day.

Members of the Sustainable Berkeley Coalition were rebuffed at Berkeley City Hall on Wednesday, July 8, when they attempted to file an appeal at the Berkeley City Clerk's office on a portion of the controversial 2211 Harold Way project in Downtown Berkeley.

Kelly Hammargren and Tree Fitzpatrick sought to present the Clerk with a detailed appeal letter over Hammargren's signature, as well as a petition signed by more than 30 Berkeley residents living 300 feet or less from the Harold Way site asking that the Zoning Adjustments Board's(ZAB) certification of the project Environmental Impact Report (EIR) be appealed to the City Council as provided in California law. -more-

Redwood Gardens Residents Report on National Association of HUD Tenants Conference

Lydia Gans
Tuesday July 07, 2015 - 09:11:00 AM

The residents of Redwood Gardens continue to get increasingly frustrated in their efforts to get help from government and community agencies in the struggles with their management. Now they are learning that their situation is far from unique. There are issues of concern to tenants in HUD housing projects countrywide. -more-

Body of Berkeley Resident Found in Water Off Richmond

Erin Baldassari (BCN)
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 08:28:00 PM

The death of a 30-year-old woman who was found floating in the water near Richmond last Thursday is now considered suspicious, an East Bay Regional Park District police lieutenant said today. -more-



New: Berkeley from Abroad and Back

Becky O'Malley
Friday July 10, 2015 - 10:53:00 AM

It’s been a long time since I’ve been away from Berkeley for more than a weekend, and re-entry , especially when multiple time zones have been crossed and other languages have been spoken, can be confusing. Having returned less than a week ago, I’ve been trying to catch up with what I missed ever since. -more-

The Editor's Back Fence

As expected, Berkeley City Council Votes One More Time in Favor of Developers and Unions and Against the Public Interest

Becky O'Malley
Wednesday July 15, 2015 - 02:28:00 PM

Some have wondered what the Berkeley City Council did last night regarding the Baksheesh for Big Buildings law (AKA the "significant community benefits" resolution.) I was there, and I wonder myself. Here's a guess, subject to verification when there's time to get attorneys to review the transcript and the video: -more-

Public Comment

New: Encrypted data

Jagjit Singh
Monday July 13, 2015 - 06:08:00 PM

It is surprising that the FBI and its British counterpart, GCHQ, should be demanding greater access to encrypted data on the heels of one of the most egregious data breaches in US history when more than 21 million Social Security numbers were compromised.

It is heartening to read that fourteen of the world’s pre-eminent cryptographers, computer scientists and security specialists have collectively opposed the FBI and GCHQ’s demand for access to encrypted communications. Such access would endanger all such confidential data, as well as the broader communications infrastructure. Surely, with repeated data breaches of sensitive data we should be demanding more encryption not less. -more-

New: City Accepts $2 Million Grant to Use Toxic Tires in Paving and Playing Fields

Merrilie Mitchell
Monday July 13, 2015 - 05:04:00 PM

Our city has accepted $2 million in Cal Recycle grants for recycling thousands of old (toxic) tires into our asphalt mix. This asphalt would be used to pave streets and sidewalks and for crumb rubber (tiny pellets) used to rejuvenate artificial turf fields. -more-

New: City Council Highlights….

Councilmember Linda Maio
Monday July 13, 2015 - 05:00:00 PM

Tomorrow night's meeting, July 14th, is the last one before summer break. Council will reconvene on September 15th. Here are a few items of interest on the agenda.

Initiating a Plan for San Pablo Avenue

Councilmember Darryl Moore and I are requesting that a Plan be developed for San Pablo Avenue to guide development and map out improvements for the corridor. Item #37 [PDF]. -more-

New: Open Letter to Berkeley Officials: Benefits Resolution is Legally Incorrect

Anna de Leon
Friday July 10, 2015 - 11:42:00 AM

TO: Mayor Tom Bates, City of Berkeley Zack Cowan, City Attorney, City of Berkeley

FROM: Anna de Leon

RE: Agenda Item #54 Berkeley City Council Meeting of July 14, 2015 Establish a System for New Downtown Projects Over 75 Feet to Provide Significant Community Benefits -- Necessity for Adoption by Ordinance instead of Resolution

Dear Mayor Bates and City Attorney Cowan,

Given the scope and substantive changes to the existing ordinance guiding significant community benefits contained in the above agenda item, its adoption at the Council’s July 14th meeting by resolution, rather than by ordinance, would be in violation of the Berkeley City Charter. Accordingly, I request that this item be removed from the agenda and correctly re-submitted at a later Council meeting as a proposed ordinance.

Notice of the above concern was previously provided to you on June 25, 2015 in a letter from Ellen Widess and Rick Warren when the above Resolution was first introduced on the Council agenda as a discussion item. While your response at that time was that the Council could discuss the item, since it was only being referred to the City Manager without any formal action being taken at that meeting, the Council is now poised to take formal, and I believe legally incorrect, action. -more-

New: Berkeley Continues Construction in Wake of Balcony Disaster

Charlene Woodcock
Friday July 10, 2015 - 11:32:00 AM

Concerned citizens wish to know who in the city government is tallying the ever-growing number of large new buildings and their cumulative impact on city resources and services such as streets and transportation, water, electricity, sewer, and fire and police protection. Given the fatal consequences of the collapse of the Library Gardens balcony, now we must ask if the city employs enough building inspectors to assess rigorously the quality of construction and adherence to code and the safe maintenance of these many new large buildings going up simultaneously, a phenomenon probably unprecedented in Berkeley's history. Someone needs to investigate the history of the contractors for large buildings to make sure they haven't been sued for shoddy work on previous projects, as is the case with the Library Gardens firm. We need to know the cost to city residents and taxpayers of this radical increase in construction in the city, in terms of infrastructure stress, increased traffic, and increase in greenhouse gases? Has an emergency preparedness plan been established to account for the special needs of emergencies in large buildings? This significant increase in housing units strains both physical, natural, and human resources, already aging, overburdened, or inadequate. -more-

New: Progress for People not Millions for Moguls- Defeat Developers Dream Deal

Councilmember Kriss Worthington
Friday July 10, 2015 - 06:24:00 PM

Millions of dollars of downtown hi-rise developer fee reductions are on the July 14th Council agenda. Multiple professional consultant reports suggest higher fairer fees. Nonetheless, the City Council has instructed staff to prepare three proposals to reduce millions of dollars in fees for wealthy corporations. Ironically these millions of dollars of corporate giveaways are being discussed within one month of the City cutting social service groups funding, and increasing homeowner fees. -more-

New: Our Justice Department Needs Improvement

Romila Khanna
Friday July 10, 2015 - 01:45:00 PM

How can one person represent all Mexican-Americans? Francisco Lopez-Sanchez is accused in the shooting death of 32 year-old Kathryn Steinle at Pier 14 on the Embarcadero in San Francisco last week. The other day I was listening to a Presidential candidate for the Republican Party. I was amazed to hear the candidate say, he will close the borders so immigrants will stop killing American citizens. It seems to be a blame game. Because of one or two we cannot blame all the Mexican-Americans here. There are all kinds of good and bad people in the U.S. including descendants of those who came over on the Mayflower. The immigrants from families that have been in the U.S. for many generations also shoot and kill people. Why are there no heated debates about immigrants from England or Scotland? -more-

New: Berkeley Public Library Weeding Rebuttal

Jeff Scott, Director of Library Services, Berkeley Public Library / Administration
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 10:20:00 AM

This is my rebuttal to an opinion piece posted this week.

This email is intended to answer questions about weeding at the Berkeley Public Library. I will provide a full presentation similar to this at the September 9th BOLT Meeting.

This process was originally queried in January 2015 by Berkeley City Council. At that meeting, I provided an Annual Report on the progress of Berkeley Public Library and answered questions about our weeding process. In particular, I pointed out a test case of the 500s, the section dealing with Earthquakes.

After a review by librarians it was determined 25% of the collection to be weeded was already missing (hence why it wasn't circulating). Of the remaining collection all but three books were questioned as a maybe to keep. Those that were pulled were decades old (some of the sampling included topics on earthquakes that go back to 1990 which seems is irresponsible to keep). -more-

Many Books in the Berkeley Public Library Collection Are Being Purged and Pulped by Administrators

Roya L. Arasteh
Monday July 06, 2015 - 11:04:00 AM

The Central Berkeley Public Library, once a destination library, is now becoming a decimated library.

Hundreds and hundreds of books are being dumped from the collection without input from librarian selectors, and pulped. All “weeding” is being handled by two managers - with partial input from four other librarians. The entire rest of the librarian staff is locked out of the ordering and weeding process, and has no access to the book budget.

This new policy requires that books are discarded, based solely on their circulation records. The new library director has stated that all books on the shelves that haven’t circulated in the last three years must go. (Ten years for Art & Music books.) It’s being done clandestinely and quickly. All these titles are being "deleted" instead of cancelled so that all catalog records are destroyed. No count is being kept.

Senior retired library staff and current library staff have urgently approached members of the Board of Library Trustees to stop this process. Mr. Scott, the library director, reassures the Board that these complaints are exaggerated.

The staff, retired and current, is not exaggerating. -more-

Microsoft Admits They Goofed With Windows 8

Jack Bragen
Monday July 06, 2015 - 11:03:00 AM

When I bought a new laptop (generic--I couldn't pay for an HP) I was disappointed with the poor performance of the machine, and I was angered by the stupidity of the new version of Windows.

I do not use computers for entertainment. I am not impressed by the television commercials that are supposed to wow people with the fact that the new Microsoft product has a keyboard that can be taken off and put back on.

If I could have afforded a professional grade laptop, I would have bought one. I bought my previous laptop used from a friend. It had Windows XP, which I still believe is the best operating system Microsoft has produced.

The previous laptop, for which I had paid $75, was unusable at first because someone had a bunch of extraneous software on it, which included games, music, and about five antimalware programs that were working all at once. Once I cleaned it up, it became a great computer--almost a friend.

Then, Microsoft ended support for Windows XP, and this forced me to get a newer machine. I bought a generic laptop from Acer, which has turned out to be barely usable. -more-

Gentrification and the Corporate Structure

Steve Martinot
Tuesday July 07, 2015 - 11:15:00 AM

The issue of affordable housing in Berkeley (and elsewhere) has become a battlefield, one that will affect all neighborhoods in Berkeley. Because the need is great, and housing is a human right (by international standards), many social movements, local and citywide, have arisen to get that need fulfilled. But if housing is a human right, why are political movements needed to obtain that right? After all, doesn’t capitalism function best (and profit most) by producing for extant social needs? Why is there a battlefield? Because indeed diametric interests confront each other – humans needing housing we can afford, and corporations whose needs are for economic control over markets. -more-

Our Domestic Guantanamo

Tejinder Uberoi
Monday July 06, 2015 - 11:16:00 AM

Rikers Island, our very own ‘Guantanamo Bay prison’, has a long dark history of incarcerating and destroying young lives. One of the most egregious examples is the recent tragic death of a 16-year-old high school sophomore, Kalief Browder, who was detained on suspicion of stealing a backpack. -more-

New: Razing the Myth of the Insidious Eucalyptus Tree

Kate Bernier, Darsena & Jeanne O’Rose
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 03:49:00 PM

In the Bay Area and beyond, Eucalyptus trees are coming under attack, with many calling for their removal based on false claims about the flammability and invasiveness of this non-native species. There are a number of misconceptions about this beautiful tree, ranging from dubious allegations that their presence has a negative impact on native plants, birds, and bees, to the popular notion that they are more prone to wildfires than other species of tree. -more-

New: Celebrating Medicare, Ignoring Medicaid

Harry Brill
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 03:46:00 PM

On July 30 this year throughout the country the nation will be celebrating the 50th birthday of Medicare, which, as you know, serves mainly senior citizens. An important component in this celebration is demanding Medicare for All. A major celebration will take place in Frank Ogawa Plaza in Oakland beginning 11am.

But 50 years ago President Johnson on the same date signed not only the Medicare bill. He signed into law Medicaid, which is a much larger program. Moreover, Medicaid provides services that are not available to Medicare recipients, including the availability of long term care facilities. Yet Medicaid is being ignored by senior organizations, labor unions, faith based and community organizations They act as if the program does not exist. -more-

Iran and the Nuclear Deal

Tejinder Uberoi
Monday July 06, 2015 - 11:18:00 AM

The proposed Iran Nuclear Deal should go forward notwithstanding opposition from Israel and Saudi Arabia. -more-

July Pepper Spray Times

By Grace Underpressure
Friday July 10, 2015 - 01:53:00 PM

Editor's Note: The latest issue of the Pepper Spray Times is now available.

You can view it absolutely free of charge by clicking here . You can print it out to give to your friends.

Grace Underpressure has been producing it for many years now, even before the Berkeley Daily Planet started distributing it, most of the time without being paid, and now we'd like you to show your appreciation by using the button below to send her money. -more-


THE PUBLIC EYE:Is the Culture War Over?

Bob Burnett
Friday July 10, 2015 - 11:35:00 AM

Recently, New York Times columnist David Brooks lamented that conservative Christians are losing the culture war. Brooks suggested that conservative Christians shift focus and “nurture stable families.” But Brooks is wrong; the culture war isn’t over. Conservatives are stuck in a war they can’t win. -more-

DISPATCHES FROM THE EDGE:Benghazi & Hilary: Missing The Story

Conn Hallinan
Friday July 10, 2015 - 01:31:00 PM

The Congressional harrying of former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over emails concerning the 2012 death of an American Ambassador and three staff members in Benghazi, Libya, has become a sort of running joke, with Republicans claiming “cover-up” and Democrats dismissing the whole matter as nothing more than election year politics. But there is indeed a story embedded in the emails, one that is deeply damning of American and French actions in the Libyan civil war, from secretly funding the revolt against Muammar Gaddafi, to the willingness to use journalism as a cover for covert action. -more-

New: ON MENTAL ILLNESS: Compliance Revisited: A Narrative

Jack Bragen
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 06:03:00 PM

Taking antipsychotic medication can be miserable in the short-term. This is due to the side effects, which typically include depression, body stiffness, a drugged out feeling, and a suppression of consciousness. (Some people also get other, worse side effects.) -more-

New: ECLECTIC RANT: Reflections on the Charleston Massacre

Ralph E. Stone
Wednesday July 08, 2015 - 07:35:00 AM

Everyone has now heard the news that Dylann Storm Roof, a 21-year old white supremacist, is accused of murdering nine worshippers at the historic Emanuel AME church in Charleston, S.C. The Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney, the church pastor, was among the dead. -more-

THE PUBLIC EYE: The Republican “Religious Liberty” Tactic

Bob Burnett
Monday July 06, 2015 - 11:09:00 AM

Reeling from the Obergefell v Hodges Supreme Court decision making same-sex marriages legal in all 50 states, Republicans pushed back, claiming same-sex couples can be denied service whenever the provider believes this is consistent with their religious beliefs. Another form of LGBT discrimination. -more-

Arts & Events

New: Festival Opera Does Strauss’s ARIADNE AUF NAXOS

Reviewed by James Roy MacBean
Monday July 13, 2015 - 06:11:00 PM

Richard Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos is about as weird as opera gets; and opera can get pretty weird. In its original incarnation, this was a one act opera designed to follow a condensed version of Molière’s play Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme (translated into German by Hugo von Hofmannstahl), for which Strauss provided incidental music. This version was given in Stuttgart in 1912, and again in Berlin in 1913. It pleased no one. Subsequently, Strauss and von Hofmannstahl dropped the Molière play and wrote a lengthy Prologue to be performed before the one act opera. This new version successfully premiered in Vienna in 1916. -more-

Around & About--Music: Festival Opera Stages Strauss' 'Ariadne Auf Naxos' This Weekend

Ken Bullock
Friday July 10, 2015 - 01:52:00 PM

Valiant Festival Opera, who in the past staged some of the finest opera productions in recent years in the Bay Area--are producing Richard Strauss' heady combo of comic and grand opera--"an opera within an opera"--this weekend at the Lesher Center for the Arts in Walnut Creek, shows at 8 tonight and 2 on Sunday, conducted and stage directed by artistic director Michael Morgan (also of the Oakland East Bay Symphony), with a cast including soprano Othalie Graham, tenor Robert Breault, soprano Shawnette Sulker and bass-baritone Kirk Eichelberger. A must-see in a summer bursting with opera! -more-

3-Week Mendocino Music Festival begins Tonight

Ken Bullock
Friday July 10, 2015 - 01:43:00 PM

"I saw them putting up the big tent on the headlands in Mendocino, while driving up Highway One," an old friend up north emailed me the other day. "Looks good from across the Big River estuary and the bay. I guess it's time for the Music Festival!" -more-

San Francisco Mime Troupe Opens for the East Bay on Saturday

Tuesday July 07, 2015 - 11:44:00 AM

The SF Mime Troupe's 2015 Summer show, FREEDOMLAND, deals with police violence in America. The show is written by and stars long SFMT collective member Michael Gene Sullivan. -more-

A Spirited MARRIAGE OF FIGARO at San Francisco Opera

Reviewed by James Roy MacBean
Tuesday July 07, 2015 - 11:22:00 AM

The first of three extraordinary Mozart and Da Ponte collaborations, Le Nozze di Figaro premiered at Vienna’s Burgtheater on May 1, 1786, with Mozart himself conducting. Based on the 1778 drama Le Mariage de Figaro by French playwright Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais, Mozart’s opera was politically suspect from the start. Emperor Joseph considered it “a bad play,” and he bemoaned the fact that his own sister, Marie Antoinette, was “beginning to be afraid of her own people.” Nonetheless, Joseph gave permission for the opera to be staged. We should note that Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, set to a libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte, fore-shadows the French Revolution of 1789 by dramatizing a revolution already taking place in the household of a fictitious aristocratic, Count Almaviva. In the course of this opera, Count Almaviva’s servants – Figaro and Susanna – repeatedly get the better of him, outwitting him at every turn, while achieving the moral high ground over the Count’s insidious intrigues. -more-

Rethinking Our Priorities

Romila Khanna
Monday July 06, 2015 - 11:27:00 AM

It seems absurd that our Congress debates sending our tax dollars to save other nations. We need to help our international communities, but at what cost? I hear that we should send our money to ensure safety and growth for other nations. Why are we forgetting our own? It is strange that first we attack other nations and destroy their resources, and then we start sending them aid. It is high time we focus on ensuring safety and growth for our own nation. -more-