excerpt from His Honor Da
Peaceful Park Evacuation
I believe the Occupy Movement
has done this country a great service, by pointing out the disparity
between the very rich and the rest of us, and that the people
of Berkeley largely support its message. However, the encampment
in Civic Center Park has lately become a health and safety problem.
There has been an attempted rape, arrests for having knives and
a gun, and numerous fights, including an assault with a 2x4.
In addition, 3 cases of food poisoning have occurred.
Recently, the City has told
the campers that the City needs to enforce our regulations pertaining
to the park health and safety. We thank the majority of
the people who have voluntarily left and hope the handful of others
will follow their lead. It would be great to declare victory and
move on together to realizing the important goals of equity, and
of making government work for all of us.
I would like to thank everyone for making this a largely peaceful
process and also thank our City of Berkeley staff for handling
this delicate situation so very well.
Sincerely, Tom Bates
" Rise of the drone: From Calif. garage
to multibillion-dollar defense industry" Peter Finn at washingtonpost.com.
"In 1980, Abraham Karem,
an engineer who had emigrated from Israel, retreated into his
three-car garage in Hacienda Heights outside Los Angeles and,
to the bemusement of his tolerant wife, began to build an aircraft.
The work eventually spilled
into the guest room, and when Karem finished more than a year
later, he wheeled into his driveway an odd, cigar-shaped craft
that was destined to change the way the United States wages war.
The Albatross, as it was
called, was transported to the Dugway Proving Ground in Utah,
where it demonstrated the ability to stay aloft safely for up
to 56 hours - a very, very long time in what was then the crash-prone
world of drones.
Three iterations and more
than a decade of development later, Karem's modest-looking drone
became the Predator, the lethal, remotely piloted machine that
can circle above the enemy for nearly a day before controllers
thousands of miles away in the southwestern United States launch
Hellfire missiles toward targets they are watching on video screens.
The emergence of hunter-killer
and surveillance drones as revolutionary new weapons in the wars
in Iraq and Afghanistan, and in counterterrorism operations in
places such as Pakistan and Yemen, has spawned a multibillion-dollar
industry, much of it centered in Southern California, once the
engine of Cold War military aviation.
Over the next 10 years, the
Pentagon plans to purchase more than 700 medium- and large-size
drones at a cost of nearly $40 billion, according to a Congressional
Budget Office study. Thousands more mini-drones will be fitted
in the backpacks of soldiers so they can hand-launch them in minutes
to look over the next hill or dive-bomb opposing forces."
"Female Inventors--Hedy Lamarr
'Any girl can be glamorous,'
Hedy Lamarr once said. 'All she has to do is stand still and look
stupid.' The film star belied her own apothegm by hiding a brilliant,
inventive mind beneath her photogenic exterior. In 1942, at
the height of her Hollywood career, she patented a frequency-switching
system for torpedo guidance that was two decades ahead of its
Hedy Lamarr was born in Vienna
in 1914 as Hedwig Eva Maria Kiesler. She went to Max Reinhardt's
famous acting school in Berlin during her late teens, and in 1933
she showed the world her acting skills and most of herself in
the film Extase (Ecstacy), which quickly became
notorious for its extensive nude scenes. The movie played in America
after severe cutting, and in 1937 its leading lady went to Hollywood.
Louis B. Mayer, of MGM, hired her and gave her the name Lamarr.
Some people thought Hedy to be the most beautiful woman in Hollywood,
but as an actress she was overshadowed by heroines like Ingrid
Bergman and Katharine Hepburn. In 1966, she published her autobiography,
Ecstacy and Me.
Hedy Lamarr married Fritz
Mandal, the first of six husbands, in 1933. During their marriage,
which broke up in 1937, Madame Mandl was an institution in Viennese
society, entertaining-and dazzling-foreign leaders, including
Hitler and Mussolini. Her husband specialized in shells and grenades,
but from the mid-thirties on he also manufactured military aircraft.
He was interested in control systems and conducted research in
the field. His wife clearly learned things from him, because she
and her co-inventor, George Antheil, later went on to invent the
torpedo guidance system that was two decades before its time.
Hedy Lamarr's co-inventor,
George Antheil, was born in Trenton, New Jersey, in 1900. His
parents were from East Prussia. After studying music at what is
now the Curtis Institute, in Philadelphia, he went to Europe to
pursue a career as a concert pianist, heading first to Berlin
and then settling in Paris in 1923. He became one of the top avante-garde
composers of the time, writing and playing machinelike, 'mechanistic,'
rhythmically propulsive pieces with names like Airplane Sonata,
Sonata Sauvage, Jazz Sonata, and Death of Machines.
His Ballet Méanique was scored for sixteen player
pianos, xylophones and percussion and was first performed in Paris
in June 1926, in a version that had only one player piano but
also had electric bells, airplane propellers and a siren. It caused
George Antheil's biography.
"American men, as a
group, seem to be interested in only two things, money and breasts.
It seems a very narrow outlook" Hedy Lamarr.
Hedy Lamarr's biography.
"Her bucket experience offers taste of
May at sfgate.com.
"I don't have a bucket
list - the idea of rushing to have fun before you die seems counter
to living in the moment.
I have a superhero list.
It includes all the skills and adventures I feel are necessary
to become an elite human - one who helps the less fortunate, yet
can also apply red lipstick while driving a Harley at full throttle.
You know, someone who is that perfect blend of Xena the Warrior
Princess and Lucille Ball.
As part of my self-improvement
plan, I pulled up to the Silver Horse Winery in San Miguel. Sunset
magazine was hosting a grape stomp, something that has intrigued
me ever since I saw Lucy do it on TV decades ago."
"Stirring Up History" by Jonathan King, alumni.berkeley.edu.
"The Bancroft's Chez
Panisse Archives give a soupçon of the restaurant's early
The inch-high Help Wanted
ad was placed in a Bay Area newspaper sometime in the early 1970s
by a 'small, successful, innovative Restaurant' in Berkeley seeking
an 'inspired energetic CHEF to plan and cook single-entree 5-course
dinners weekly, Fernand Point and Elizabeth David style.'
That scrap of newsprint,
taped casually to the center of a vintage sheet of Chez Panisse
notepaper, sits in a folder labeled "Staff: miscellaneous"
within the Chez Panisse manuscript archives at the Bancroft Library.
Possibly it's the very one that ran in the San Francisco Chronicle
in 1973. It may indeed be the one that, as foodie legend has it,
brought only a handful of applicants to the kitchen at 1517 Shattuck
Ave. But none were satisfactory to the overworked but committed
young Alice Waters '67 and her comrades in cuisine, who'd converted
the old house to a restaurant just two years earlier. Only then
did an unknown Jeremiah Tower stride in, 'fix the soup' by adding
salt and a bit of cream and white wine, and instantly land the
job. It's been said that Tower's glittering career, the enduring
reputation of Chez Panisse, indeed California cuisine itself-whatever
that may prove to be when all is said and done-were all born at
that historic moment."
"Oakley couple fill home with vintage vehicles"
by Rowena Coetsee, Contra
"Visitors to the Gills'
home won't find a spot to sit down when they first step over the
That's because Dennis and
his wife, Tish, have parked their overflow motorcycles inside
their Oakley house. All five of them. In the front room.
'What's a living room for
if you don't use it?' said Dennis, . . ."
damn, didn't find the Wooler
under our tree yesterday morning
"California's young farmers break traditional
mold" Stacy Finz,
Chronicle Staff Writer.
"The average age of
a farmer in California is creeping toward 60, and the California
Department of Food and Agriculture is trying to attract newcomers
to work the land.
The need is especially acute,
given that experts are forecasting that the world will have to
double its food supply to keep up with a booming population -
growing from 7 billion people to 9 billion by 2050. California
is a significant player in feeding the globe, providing 12 percent
of the nation's agriculture exports."
"It is not a happy holiday for management
of the Pacific Steel Casting Company" at abclocal.com.
The Berkeley business is
being slapped with a multi-million dollar lawsuit filed by a former
employee over working conditions, but not all workers there think
there's a problem.
The class-action lawsuit
was filed on Friday in Alameda County Superior Court. It is seeking
$30 million in damages for alleged violations to California work
'It's a violation,' said
Roberto Rodriguez. 'We don't feel fine, comfortable working with
these kinds of violations.'
Rodriguez, with his attorney
by his side, described what he called a systematic and routine
disregard for California's work labor laws by his former employer,
Pacific Steel Casting Company.
'It's very challenging work
to have to go an extra couple of hours to have an opportunity
to take 30 minutes outside in some fresh air and eat lunch,' said
attorney Timothy Rumberger. 'I think it is very dangerous and
certainly isn't fair to the workers.' "
POSTS FROM THE
Oops, go BOOM!
"A small earthquake Thursday morning in
Berkeley further strained the nerves of those waiting for the
Big One, but the temblors are neither relieving stress on the
Hayward fault nor acting as a precursor to a larger one, a scientist
with the U.S. Geological Survey said" reports Doug Oakley of Times Media.
Oakley writes further "Townley [chairman of Berkeley's Disaster
and Fire Safety Commission] said Berkeley is in decent shape when
it comes to earthquake preparedness, but residents will no doubt
have to fend for themselves when the Big One hits."
Kind'a the Hobbesian scenario
"Each man is the other man's wolf."
"New Berkeley library leader keeping eyes,
ears open: Self-professed lifelong book lover wants to get handle
on priorities for staff and community" reports Martin Snapp of the West County
of landmark book store tops list of biggest stories in 2006"
writes Snapp. "A vote to impeach President Bush, the opening
of a new college and a mayor who got re-elected by the largest
margin in almost 40 years. These were among the biggest stories
in Berkeley in 2006. But the biggest story of all was the July
10 closure of Cody's Books' iconic Telegraph Avenue store."
Well, the biggest story in
Potter Creek was the opening of 900
huh, . .
. maybe Sally's dining pavillion making "House Beautiful.
nooo, . .
. could be Pete and Julie's "Alternate Tunings" debut
on KALX: Pete and Lin's upcoming KALX radio dramas? huh, that's
Hmm, . .
. could be . . .
marathon hike in the Sierras?
Christmas, Bob sent this email to our mayor and council members
I'm a U.C.
graduate in geology and a Berkeley resident
and I applaud your standing up to the University in
its attempts to continue building on top of the
Hayward fault. It is totally irresponsible of the
Regents. If they don't exibit good sense someone must
do it for them.
Eggs and Lox "Toughest Guy of the Year Award" goes to
John Phillips, harpsichord maker. John REALLY toughed-out late
Fall, early Winter.
Paul Bertolli [former chef at Chez Panisse, now sausage maker]
was mentioned in "The Economist," December 23rd 2006.
In the last paragraph of a story about cured meats, "Feet
in the Trough," the author writes "Bertolli, like other
romantics that transform raw flesh into something melting and
rich with a little more than salt, air and time, do not follow
tradition for its own sake, but because it produces something
extraordinarily delicious. And that tradition, like the meat it
produces, is something that neither the moths nor worms can spoil."
Many back-months of Scrambled
Eggs are still browsed, yesterday's favorite was January/February
"The University of California at Berkeley
Bulldozes Trees and Other Vegetation at Peoples Park, Berkeley" by Mary Ann Uribe at indybay.org.
"[ Yesterday ] morning
at about 7:30 a.m. the University of California at Berkeley brought
in bulldozers and a work crew and tore down trees and other vegetation
in a portion of Peoples Park on Haste St. This was done without
notice to members of the community who use the park and, according
to a University of California police officer who asked to remain
anonymous, was done surreptitiously in order to avoid any confrontation
or issue with the community.
A young woman from the University
passed out fliers that were a sort of explanation of what was
going on. The flier said 'In response to park users and neighbor
concerns, we are doing maintenance work to address the rat infestation
and safety issues of People's Park.'
Being Chair of the Peoples
Park Forever Committee and a frequent park user, I have never
been approached or told by any 'park user(s) and/[(or)] neighbor(s)'
who expressed 'concern' about 'safety issues' in this portion
of the park. When I asked the woman what were the 'safety issues'
referred to in the flier, she said she had no idea and had no
knowledge of any 'safety issues' in the Park."
Hawthorne -- aka Hate Man -- has made People's Park his home for
10 years" by Jane Tyska, Oakland Tribune.
"Mark Hawthorne hates you.
The former New York Times
reporter, known as 'Hate Man,' has lived on the streets of Berkeley
for 25 years and in People's Park for 10. He prefers living outdoors,
doesn't want a home and doesn't consider himself homeless.
'I avoid the term "h-o-m-e-l-e-s-s,"
' said Hawthorne, spelling it out like other words he doesn't
like. 'If I didn't want a BMW, would you say I was "BMW-less?"
Hawthorne sits on a log in
the park, next to a Webster's dictionary with 'Hate Camp' scrawled
across the cover, trims the filter off a Virginia Slims and lights
it. Wearing layers of black clothing with safety pins attached,
floppy hat and fingerless gloves, he sips cold black coffee from
a bottle festooned with colored plastic strips. He doesn't drink
alcohol or do drugs.
Hate got his name from espousing
his philosophy of 'oppositionality' in a tiny corner of People's
Park. His theory is that if people are honest with each other
when they're opposite, they'll start to feel safe with each other.
'For me to trust a person
and be comfortable with them, they have to be willing to say "
I hate you," ' Hawthorne said.
Hawthorne, 75, was born in
Washington, D.C., and grew up in Stamford, Conn. He served in
the Air Force and also the Peace Corps, where he spent time living
in Thailand. He spent 10 years at the Times, beginning in 1961
as a copy boy and working his way up to general assignment reporter.
Hawthorne and Mom
from the Oakland
'I was normal for 35 years,'
Hawthorne said. "
"Oakland's Reins Blister a Mayor Raised
on Protest" James
Dao at nytimes.com.
"Days after Jean Quan was elected mayor in the
fall of 2010, the Oakland police put a wheel clamp on her silver
Prius while it was parked outside City Hall. She cursed her husband
for not paying the family's parking tickets and braced for the
embarrassing news articles.
So it began: the rookie year from hell. In May, the city attorney
quit, lambasting City Hall as being corrupt. In October, the police
chief followed suit, complaining about micromanagement. In November,
voters rejected a tax that Ms. Quan had advocated to help fix
a budget shortfall. December brought new talk that all three of
Oakland's professional sports teams might leave for fancier digs.
But the problem that has
really besieged Ms. Quan, the first woman and first Asian-American
to be the city's mayor, has been the Occupy Oakland movement,
which in October turned a grassy plaza in front of City Hall into
a muddy staging ground for anticorporate protest."
"Northern California Fishing Report"
"Berkeley: Tuesday was
the first day without limits of crab. It was half-limits of crab
and full limits of rock cod. Rock cod season ends Saturday. "
"Christmas crackdown on fireplaces yields
400 complaints; New Year's may be next" by Mike Rosenberg at contracostatimes.com.
"The Bay Area's air-quality
police were out in force over Christmas weekend, cracking down
on wood fires. And the smoke cops could be sending out belated
stocking stuffers -- hefty fines -- to several dozen people caught
using their fireplaces.
Regulators said more than 400 people tattled on their neighbors
for lighting wood fires in their homes on Christmas Eve and Christmas
Day, a holiday tradition that was illegal this year because of
poor air quality."
"US police fatalities up 13 percent in
2011 to 173" Greg
Bluestein, AP reporter.
"One Oregon police chief was killed when a man allegedly
took the officer's gun and shot him in the head. A policeman in
Arizona was fatally shot when he went to a suburban Phoenix apartment
complex to help a probation officer. And two South Dakota officers
were killed in a shootout after a traffic stop.
The number of fatalities
from departments across the country caused by firearms made 2011
one of the deadliest years in recent history for U.S. law enforcement.
Across the nation, 173 officers
died in the line of duty, up 13 percent from 153 the year before,
according to numbers as of Wednesday compiled by the National
Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund."
"Overturning of Prop. 13 sought in lawsuit" Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer.
"Proposition 13, which revolutionized government financing
in California by slashing property taxes and erecting new barriers
to other state and local tax increases, was upheld by the state
Supreme Court soon after it passed in 1978, seemingly ending all
questions about its legality.
But a team of lawyers headed
by a former federal appeals court judge has sued to overturn a
crucial provision of Prop. 13 - the requirement of a two-thirds
legislative vote to raise state taxes."
"Growing wealth widens distance between
lawmakers and constituents" Peter
Whoriskey at washingtonpost.com.
"One day after his shift
at the steel mill, Gary Myers drove home in his 10-year-old Pontiac
and told his wife he was going to run for Congress.
The odds were long. At 34,
Myers was the shift foreman at the "hot mill" of the
Armco plant here. He had no political experience and little or
no money, and he was a Republican in a district that tilted Democratic.
But standing in the dining
room, still in his work clothes, he said he felt voters deserved
a better choice.
Three years later, he won.
When Myers entered Congress,
in 1975, it wasn't nearly so unusual for a person with few assets
besides a home to win and serve in Congress. Though lawmakers
on Capitol Hill have long been more prosperous than other Americans,
others of that time included a barber, a pipe fitter and a house
painter. A handful had even organized into what was called the
'Blue Collar Caucus.'
But the financial gap between
Americans and their representatives in Congress has widened considerably
since then, according to an analysis of financial disclosures
by The Washington Post."
"Congressional net worth more than doubles
since 1984" a photo
gallery feature at washingtonpost.com that includes our
"The 25 members of Congress
with the highest net worth in 2010, according to an analysis by
the Center for Responsive Politics based on disclosures filed
by the lawmakers."
"Nancy Pelosi Would Like To 'Retire Right
Now,' According To Her Daughter, Alexandra"
by Jon Bershad at mediaite.com.
At an estimated worth of
190 mil she can afford it. "Her people" deny the story.
POSTS FROM THE
college-roomate at Madison and old-time friend emails
& cautious consideration.....your contract of
friendship has been renewed for the New Year 2008!
It was a
very hard decision to make. So try not to screw it up!
provides some of the best non-Berkeley photos used in Scrambled
A crew spent
all yesterday trimming and cleaning the French School facility
on 8th and Grayson.
"Dragon tale: Edward's day of giving" is a Times' story by
was a very young dragon who made his home in a cozy grove of pine
trees. The trees were on a rocky hill near a small town. And since
he -- like all young dragons -- ate rocks for dinner and pebbles
for snacks -- he was quite happy."
"Americans' credit card debt surges: Specialists say problem is
partly a byproduct of mortgage crisis and could spell trouble
for economy" report the AP's Rachel Konrad and Bob
are falling behind on their credit card payments at an alarming
rate, sending delinquencies and defaults surging by double-digit
percentages in the past year and prompting warnings of worse to
Press analysis of financial data from the country's largest card
issuers found that the greatest rise was among accounts more than
90 days in arrears.
that these signs of the deterioration of many households' finances
are partly a byproduct of the subprime mortgage crisis and could
spell more trouble ahead for an already sputtering economy.
leaks into other areas, whether it starts with the mortgage and
goes to the credit card or vice versa,' said Cliff Tan, a visiting
scholar at Stanford University and an expert on credit risk. 'We're
starting to see leaks now.'
of credit card accounts at least 30 days late jumped 26 percent
from a year earlier to $17.3 billion in October at 17 large credit
card trusts examined by the AP. That represented more than 4 percent
of the total outstanding principal balances owed to the trusts
on credit cards that were issued by banks such as Bank of America
and Capital One and for retailers such as Home Depot and Wal-Mart.
At the same
time, defaults -- when lenders essentially give up hope of ever
being repaid and write off the debt -- rose 18 percent in October
to almost $961 million, according to filings made by the trusts
with the Securities and Exchange Commission."
Zo , . .
. check out the enormous dollar store--The Dollar
Tree-- on Shattuck
one block north of Dwight--it's on the north-west corner. The
address is 2440 Shattuck.
"Oscar Peterson was widely considered one
of jazz's greatest pianists" reports BBC News.
a child, Oscar Peterson - who has died at the age of 82 - began
learning to play the trumpet, but a bout of tuberculosis caused
him to switch to the piano.
to be a blessing, since he was to become one of the most popular
virtuoso jazz pianists.
He made more
than 200 albums and won eight Grammy awards, including a lifetime
achievement honour in 1997.
was the capacity to play at lightning speed, while maintaining
the ability to swing. What's more, he could play in a variety
of jazz styles."
6:30 PM and 7:00PM my dark-blue 1979 Toyota 4X4 was stolen from
my driveway. It was locked and parked in my fully-lighted-drive.
Its license number is 1U51703. It is in excellent condition with
some paint chipping here and there and with 210,00 miles.
Any information should forwarded to Berkeley PD Auto Theft at
Sadly, it took Berkeley PD two-hours to respond to my call. I
reported the theft at roughly 7:10 and an officer arrived about
9:15 PM. The officer was courteous, efficient, well-informed and
young. Congrats on all that!
Linda Maio emails
hear this Ron. Very sorry.
quite a few email saying how sorry the writers are. Well, Ok .
. . now what are we going to do about it?
Ron- We are
sorry to hear about your truck. I will forward your email throughout
L.J. Kruse Co. We'll keep our eyes open for you.
emails from Albuqerque, NM
learn about this, Ron. . . . I looked at the crime
map for your zipcode, and was distressed to see how crime-ridden
area is. I know you're very attached to the neighborhood, the
people, history, etc., but with the crime and bad air quality,
you considered relocating . . . Just a thought. With my lungs
harmed from 47 years of
smoking, there's no way I could tolerate the air you live in.
. . . Also, while we have crime,
it's nothing like what you have there.
"Fire Burns CA Homes, Apparatus Damaged"
"A fire spread quickly and caused heavy damage to two homes
in the hills of Berkeley, California, last night at approximately
8:30 p.m. PT., according to a report from NBC Bay Area News."
"Chihuahua lost 5 years ago is returned
to family" by J
M Brown, Oakland Tribune.
"A California family got the best - and most belated - Christmas
present this year, one that has really put them in the mood to
ring in the new year.
Ann and Craig Magnussen and
their two teenage daughters were reunited two days before Christmas
with a Chihuahua they lost five years ago. The dog named Taz showed
up in the parking lot of the Berkeley Bowl supermarket in Berkeley,
Calif., on Dec. 23, a bit dirty and disheveled."
January 2012 here
from my log
12/25/11--Spare the Air Day--9:04AM--dry
burning air in front room, mucus membrane irritation, odor. 11:08
AM--irritant in front room. 11:35 AM--dry burning air in front
room, mucus membrane irritation,"epoxy/asbestos/hot roofing
tar" odor. 5:17 PM--"burning gas" odor in front
room, mucus membrane irritation,"epoxy/asbestos/hot roofing
tar" odor, rf.6:00 PM--similar. 6:17 PM--"unburned natural
gas " odor in warehouse front.
12/26/11--Spare the Air Day--7:34
AM--dirty dry air, "burning gas" odor in warehouse front
and IMMEDIATELY in front of warehouse, dirty industrial hydrogen?
8:02 AM--irritant in front room, dry dirty air. 8:06 AM--light
12/28/11---Spare the Air
Day--7:49 AM--lights flicker. 8:00 AM--irritant in warehouse front
and IMMEDIATELY in front of warehouse.
12/29/11--7:32 AM--dry burning
air in front room, mucus membrane irritation,"epoxy/asbestos/hot
roofing tar" odor.
in warehouse front and IMMEDIATELY in front of warehouse, "burning
gas" odor .