William Powell

admiring Gary Cooper's Duesenburg.



"Where to find free or discounted movie screenings in Berkeley" dailycal.org.




"10 potentially embarrassing moments at UC Berkeley" Sujin Shin, dailycal.org.

"It's inevitable that we, at one point, will experience those little moments in life that make us want to crawl in a hole. Maybe you experience them so often you got used to it, or maybe they haunt you for the rest of the day (or week). Most of us are at least a little self-conscious about our behavior, and sometimes life can play a cruel hand and trip us up - sometimes literally.  Here are some of those embarrassing moments you might experience at UC Berkeley . . . "







"A Field Guide to Libertarianism" huffingtonpost.com.

"Last week Rand Paul spoke to students at UC Berkeley. On the face of it, the event might have had a Daniel in the lion's den flavor to it: Tea Party darling goes to the most liberal campus in America to be heckled and scorned. But when Paul started to denounce the NSA's omnipresent surveillance regime, he was greeted with cheers and applause. Privacy, he said, was the central issue for the coming generation."



"Berkeley Adult School Emphasizes 'Soft Skills' " cbslocal.com.

At Berkeley Adult School, teachers are concentrating on their students' 'soft skills' -- skills necessary for life but which don't usually  show up on exams. "





 "Marketing Tools for Startups BUS ADM X419.4" extension.berkeley.edu.

"Do you have an app, product or service to sell that you eventually want to turn into a company? Learn how to develop a face and voice for your startup; assess benefits to define target markets; and use visual design, copywriting and content creation in combination with social networking strategies to launch your new venture. In this practical, hands-on class, learn how to define your product or service; find your target audience; assess your competition; and then develop and produce a company identity (branding), website and collateral marketing tools to sell your ideas to the marketplace or to venture capital investors."








our Councilman Darryl Moore emails

I recently became aware of a plan Phillips 66 has to ship highly hazardous crude oil by rail, in large volume, along our Union Pacific tracks, to San Luis Obispo. These are the very tracks Amtrak uses, adjoining residences, industries, shopping areas. The record of accidents and explosions of this material is frightening, as you can see in the piece KPIX aired last week:
 The Council will consider a host of recommendations I've submitted with my Council colleague, Vice Mayor Maio, for our meeting next week on March 25: 

Historically, the railroads are exempt from local and state laws as interstate operators, but that must not stop us from fiercely opposing their plans and demanding intervention. We will be adding additional actions to the Council item, gleaned from recent actions taken by other cities and public officials in California and elsewhere.
In the meantime... Make Your Voice Heard, urging intervention and protective action, using the following email addresses:
Berkeley City Council: clerk@cityofberkeley.info
Assemblymember Nancy Skinner: nancy.skinner@asm.ca.gov
Senator Loni Hancock:  http://sd09.senate.ca.gov/contact
Governor Jerry Brown:  http://govnews.ca.gov/gov39mail/mail.php
Congresswoman Barbara Lee:  https://lee.house.gov/contact-me/email-me
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer:  https://www.boxer.senate.gov/en/contact/policycomments.cfm
U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein:  https://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/e-mail-me







"Slain Oakland officers remembered on fifth anniversary of deadliest day in the department's history" Oakland Tribune.

"Local law enforcement officers and their families marked the five-year anniversary Friday of the deadliest day in Oakland Police Department history.
A commemorative service was held at the Cathedral of Christ the Light in Oakland for the four officers who were killed in the line of duty March, 21, 2009.

The slain officers were Sgts. Mark Dunakin, Ervin Roman and Daniel Sakai and officer John Hege." 













Rita Hayworth

and her 1940 Lincoln Continental
















"Why Air Pollution Is So Much Worse Than You Thought, Causing 1 In 8 Global Deaths" Chris Tognotti at bustle.com.

SF Bay Area smog

"The World Health Organization has said that seven million people died from air pollution in 2012, a terrible death toll linked to what they call 'the world's single largest environmental health risk.' A slew of recent studies have found links between air pollution and forms of cancer, as well as cardiovascular and respiratory diseases; WHO linked about one-eighth of all global deaths in 2012 to air pollution. The worst of it was felt in South East Asia, and the WHO's Western Pacific region, which includes China, Malaysia, Japan and the Philippines.

It's been a pretty harrowing 2014 so far for those concerned with the health implications of air pollution. A number of recent studies have presented compelling potential understandings of the toll that dirty air can have on the human body. One such study found that traffic pollution could cause electrical and physical changes to your heart's structure. Another suggested a potential link between pollution and autism, by way of measuring heightened autism rates among young children with genital malformations, which themselves have been linked to environmental pollutants and toxins. 

And another, conducted on young children born in coal pollution-suffused Tongliang county in China, found that the exposure had caused genetic changes which hurt their learning and memory skills." 

















Jimmy Stewart

and his mid-1930s Plymouth Coupe






our Alice Waters shares advice to her younger self

Chef Alice Waters, owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley, Calif., since 1971, shares a note to her younger self in the "CBS This Morning" ongoing series, "Note to Self." Waters writes about evolving from a picky eater to a professional chef famous for organic, locally-grown ingredients.





"Finding Berkeley in books" dailycal.org.

"Living in Berkeley, we are blessed with an abundance of pop-culture resources - just walk down Telegraph Avenue and you'll pass Rasputin and Amoeba music stores as well as Moe's Books and Shakespeare & Co. But whether or not you're a bibliophile at heart, there's no denying that literature and Berkeley have a special connection. Over the years, many authors have come to either reside in Berkeley or write about its charms, and every one of them has something different to say about the city.

Recent literature focuses on diversity as one of Berkeley's unique attributes. In 'Maya's Notebook,' written by Isabelle Allende, a young Chilean American teenager is raised in Berkeley by her grandparents. When they die, she is left alone and spirals into a life of drugs and crime, traveling to other cities in the United States. To Allende, Berkeley is a complicated multicultural environment. Jonathan Lethem plays tribute to this idea in his book 'The Fortress of Solitude,' comparing Berkeley to Camden: 'The school was Camden's reverse - an Asian, Mexican, black, and white sea of students, a bayside city in place of Camden's evergreen art-school hothouse.'

Post-World War II, a group of four writers, Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady, William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg came to prominence, calling themselves the 'Beats.' Their writing heavily emphasized rejection of writing standards, free expression and explicit depictions of the human condition."






"Berkeley Council votes to oppose rail shipments of crude oil" Doug Oakley, Oakland Tribune.

"The City Council is poised to fight plans by big oil companies to ship millions of gallons of highly flammable Bakken crude oil by rail through the city after a unanimous vote Tuesday night.

The council voted 9-0 to pass a resolution directing the city attorney to join anticipated lawsuits over the plans to transport oil from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota and Canada through the area to refineries in the Bay Area and Southern California. The resolution also says the city will formally oppose any permits or environmental impact reports filed with local agencies where oil refineries plan to expand or begin oil shipments by rail."



















WD emails

I had a friend who told a story of ferrying Gary Cooper's Duesenberg cross country shortly after getting out of the Army in 1946. He said it handled like a tank. . . . maybe a truck.





"California state Sen. Leland Yee arrested in corruption case" at sfgate.com.

"State Sen. Leland Yee was arrested on public corruption charges Wednesday morning in a federal investigation that also targeted Raymond 'Shrimp Boy' Chow, a notorious former San Francisco gangster, officials said.

The arrest of Yee, who represents San Francisco and a part of San Mateo County and is a candidate for California Secretary of State, came amid searches of his office in Sacramento and his home on 24th Avenue in San Francisco's Sunset District. . . .

San Francisco police and the FBI were also searching the Ghee Kung Tong Supreme Lodge belonging to the Chinese Freemasons on Spofford Street in San Francisco's Chinatown. Chow has served as head of the group.









not my Ole Man's (Max Penndorf) 1950 Packard convertible

but one just like it

Way above Max's pay grade, he was a Filling Station mechanic, but he couldn't pass this one up. So he sold his green, brush-painted '37 Dodge Four Door Sedan and bought it.


















"Pacifica Radio in turmoil as ousted executive stages sit-in" Laila Kearney, ca.reuters.com.

"The fired executive director of the Pacifica Radio network says she is not leaving the left-leaning organization's California headquarters, and equipped with an inflatable air mattress at her office, she is settling in for a fight.

Summer Reese, 40, was fired by the non-profit foundation's board in an 11-7 vote on March 13 and locked out of the headquarters in Berkeley, California, both sides said.

After cutting the padlock to get into the building, Reese has hunkered down for nine days with a team of supporters in the headquarters of Pacifica Foundation Radio, which oversees a five-station radio network serving New York, Los Angeles, Berkeley, Houston and Washington, D.C.

At least on a day-to-day level, Reese still claims to be running the network."




"New 'open-source' strategy would drop college textbook costs to zero"

















In the last few weeks readership has doubled, . . . probably the result of a bunch of new links.




"New plaque honors Berkeley's beloved Moe's Books", Carolyn Jones, sfgate.com.

It's not the booming economy that keeps Moe's Books alive. It's not a sudden surge of book readers. It's certainly not the shopping climate on Berkeley's Telegraph Avenue, where Moe's has been a fixture for five decades.

What keeps Moe's afloat is dog-eared, ink-stained love. Love, that is, for Moe Moskowitz, a rumpled, cranky, cigar-smoking New Yorker who believed that everyone, no matter how rich or poor, should be able to own a good book.

'He was a wonderful guy and I really loved him. ... I think it's loyalty, really. That's why we're still here,' said Moskowitz's daughter, Doris Moskowitz, 'ho has run the store since Moe died in 1997. 'I love the books, but I think it's the spirit of the place, the spirit of my dad, that keeps us all coming back."

Berkeley returned some of that love last week when the historical society installed a plaque outside the store honoring Moe and his contributions to the city's intellectual life. Moe probably would have rolled his eyes, irked that Berkeley took so long to acknowledge him and bemused at those who care in the first place, Doris said."





Moe left you alone . . . by Ron Penndorf

Moe's Books in Berkeley is what you would call an institution. Moe prided himself in the '60s on being one of the few Telegraph Avenue merchants that didn't have his window broken by The Demonstrators. In the '70s, however, I think some drunk fell through it. Anyway, in the '60s, not to have your windows broken by the demonstrators was an achievement. At the very least it meant that Moe was skillfully and politically in tune with the times, and at the most it meant that he was a mensch. Most certainly it meant that he had been put to, and survived, a test of character.

If Moe's was an institution, Moe was its leading inmate. I worked for him in the '70s and like to think that I built a few tables of old records into a serious used record department. Then the store was still called Moe's Books and Records. Though Moe was a bookman, he wisely saw used records as a natural addition to his store. He also loved music, claiming to have been the world's most committed and worst violin student. He probably was.

Moe has always said that he had only one good idea. That was to pay a customer a decent price or give him a decent amount of trade for used books. In a business that was characterized by dealers who paid almost nothing, that was revolutionary. In fairness, he also paid his people extremely well. And he left you alone . . . sometimes.

I applied his one good idea to used records and it worked. Moe's basement,The Pit, filled with old records. New bins were built, filled up with used records, and more were built. Used book tables were taken down or pushed aside. We even displaced Moe's friend who sold used comics there on Saturday morning. More and more records came in, and went out.

It seemed that at least one copy of every record ever made showed up at that store. With the volume we did, this must have been true. Sometimes on a Saturday, and with two or three people working, we would still fall behind in buying and would literally become surrounded by old records. They would be stacked on the floor, on the counter, next to the counter and under the counter, and still people would stand in line five or six deep offering us arms full of old records.

So many records came in, that the ones we couldn't use were given to the L'Chaim School for Dropouts (another Berkeley institution), or were put in a free box, or were thrown out. I remember, when Fantasy Records reissued some of the Prestige Catalogue on Two-fers, a customer came in with some originals for trade, convinced that the reissues were better. The ones that we couldn't use he threw out; among them an original Tenor Madness, with John Coltrane and Sonny Rollins. With classical records, we seldom discriminated between different issues and I remember pricing first label RCA stereo records at $3.00, and receiving complaints when I suggested raising the price to $4.00 or $5.00. The classical collectibles of the time were the old monos from the early '50s, these commanding the hefty price of $10.00 to $15.00. They sold, the RCAs sold, the old jazz sold, the rock sold. Everything sold.

As record sales, and more importantly the book sales, became greater, Moe talked more and more about building his own building and about having the biggest used store on the West Coast.

And he began not leaving me alone. But that's another story.


Selling Records on Berkeley's Telegrph Avenue: Mrs. Overholzer answered the door and Thank you Mr. Overholtzer by Ron Penndorf and Richard Brown.



"Moe the Mayor of Telegraph Avenue" is another story and to my knowledge, one that has yet to be written.Then there's the yet to be written "Moe the Radical Leftist who Lived His Politics Each and Every Day."


















"Berkeley Buries Plan to Kill Park's Squirrel Population" takepart.com.

"A pilot squirrel extermination program has been shelved after wildlife advocates triggered an uproar."

Don't want to poison squirrels? There are always varmint guns.

"Varmint rifle is an American English term for a small-caliber firearm or high-powered air gun primarily used for varmint hunting - killing non-native or non-game animals such as rats, house sparrows, starling, crows, ground squirrels, gophers, jackrabbits, nutria, marmots, groundhogs, porcupine, opossum, coyote, skunks, weasels, or feral cats, dogs, goats, pigs and other animals considered to be nuisance vermin destructive to native or domestic plants and animals."

Aw jeez!


But remember, . . . Crows are our firends.






"Fruit of the urban vine: City winery goes back to basics" Eric Asimov the New York Times.

"Broc Cellars fits hardly anybody's idea of a California winery. You won't see any cellars, for one thing, or anything remotely pastoral, like a vineyard. The cellars are a warehouse, on a corner in an industrial district here in Berkeley. Across one street is a cement plant. Across another is a motorcycle-repair shop. The melody of passing freight trains plays every once in a while.

But despite the asphalt vista, Broc, in business less than a decade, produces some of the most invigorating, interesting wines in California today. Some are from familiar grapes: zinfandel, grenache and cabernet franc. Others seem tauntingly obscure: picpoul, valdigué and counoise. Each demonstrates that California, better known for wines of power and amplitude, can also do fresh, thirst-quenching and intriguing exceedingly well.

Broc is a tiny operation. The proprietor, Chris Brockway, works with one assistant, Sam Baron, and gets occasional help from his girlfriend, Bridget Leary (when she is not busy buying Broc for her mother's wine bar, Four2Nine). "   



"Staff pick, King Pin Donuts" thedailymeal.com.

It's Friday night in Berkeley, and the air has an uncanny feel to it. Midterms season has taken its toll, and anxious students walk home to study for exams. During these times, all a tired student craves is a symbol of solace. As I walk down Durant, a comforting aroma reaches my nostrils: donuts. To my satisfaction, my nose leads me to the grandeur of King Pin donuts, 2521 Durant Ave, Berkeley, CA 94704 (510) 843-6688, a mecca of glazed treats." 






Free Downloads, Economics 172, 001 - Spring 2014 by Edward Andrew Miguel.









"One lap at the Isle of Man TT" hans-wurst.net












" A Return to a World Marx Would Have Known" Doug Henwood, nytimes.com.

(Doug Henwood is editor of Left Business Observer, host of a weekly radio show originating on KPFA, Berkeley, and is author of several books, including "Wall Street: How It Works and For Whom" and "After the New Economy.")

"I don't see how you can understand our current unhappy economic state without some sort of Marx-inspired analysis.

Here we are, almost five years into an officially designated recovery from the worst downturn in 80 years, and average household incomes are more than 8 percent below where they were when the Great Recession began, and employment still 650,000 short of its pre-recession high.

For years, excessive consumer borrowing muted the effects of stagnant wages. But low demand is stifling the economy, with no end in sight.
Though elites are prospering, for millions of Americans, it's as if the recession never ended.

How can this all be explained? The best way to start is by going back to the 1970s. Corporate profitability - which, as every Marxist schoolchild knows, is the motor of the system - had fallen sharply off its mid-1960s highs. Stock and bond markets were performing miserably. Inflation seemed to be rising without limit. After three decades of seemingly endless prosperity, workers had developed a terrible attitude problem, slacking off and, quaintly, even going out on strike. It's no accident that Johnny Paycheck scored a No. 1 country hit with "Take This Job and Shove It" in 1977 - utterly impossible to imagine today.

This is where Marx begins to come in. At the root of these problems was a breakdown in class relations: workers no longer feared the boss. A crackdown was in order.

And it came, hard. In October 1979, the Federal Reserve began driving interest rates toward 20 percent, to kill inflation and restrict borrowing, creating the deepest recession since the 1930s. (It was a record we only broke in 2008/2009). A little over a year later, Ronald Reagan came into office, fired the striking air-traffic controllers, setting the stage for decades of union busting to follow. Five years after Johnny Paycheck's hit, workers were desperate to hold and/or get jobs. No more attitude problem.

The 'cure' worked for about 30 years. Corporate profits skyrocketed and financial markets thrived. The underlying mechanism, as Marx would explain it, is simple: workers produce more in value than they are paid, and the difference is the root of profit. If worker productivity rises while pay remains stagnant or declines, profits increase. This is precisely what has happened over the last 30 years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, productivity rose 93 percent between 1980 and 2013, while pay rose 38 percent (all inflation-adjusted).

The 1 percent got ever-richer and more powerful. But there was a problem: a system dependent on high levels of mass consumption has a hard time coping with the stagnation or decline in mass incomes.The development of a mass consumer market after Marx died, with the eager participation of a growing middle class, caused a lot of people to say his analysis was obsolete. But now, with the hollowing out of the middle class and the erosion of mass purchasing power, the whole 20th century model of mass consumption is starting to look obsolete.

Borrowing sustained the mass consumption model for a few decades. Non-rich households borrowed to buy cars, buy food, pay medical bills, buy ever-more-expensive houses, and so on. Conveniently, rich households had plenty of spare cash to lend them.

That model broke apart in 2008 and has not - and cannot - be revived. Without the juice provided by spirited borrowing, demand remains constricted and growth rates, low. (See also: Europe.)

Raising the incomes of the bottom 90 percent of the population through higher wages and public spending initiatives - stifled since Reagan starting putting the squeeze on them - could change that. But the stockholding class has resisted that, and they have a lot of political power.

And an extraordinarily lopsided economy is the result. We didn't expect that the 21st century would bring about a return of the 19th century's vast disparities, but it's looking like that's just what's happened."




"Berkeley's Cheese Board collective supports Inkworks in hard times" Judith Scherr, contracostatimes.com.

"Businesses experiencing hard times are often on their own to face cutthroat marketplace competition.

But that wasn't the case when Inkworks Press, a 40-year-old collective print shop, found itself unable to rebound from the recession. Facing an uncertain future, Inkworks got support from the Cheese Board, itself a Berkeley collective since 1971.

In early March, the Cheese Board finalized the purchase of Inkworks' building on Seventh Street in southwest Berkeley and leased the building back to the print shop for two years, allowing the printers time to plot out their future.

Getting help from the Cheese Board 'feels so right,' said founding Inkworks member Erica Braun, noting 'ommitments of both collectives to workplace democracy and the 'stewardship of community resources."

'To me, the supportive energy and shared sense of values is kind of similar to our beginnings,' Braun said.

Inkworks' founders didn't see themselves primarily as printers entering a joint business venture, but as activists who learned the printing trade in order to create newsletters, pamphlets and posters for community and progressive causes. The collective likewise believes in a unionized and worker-controlled workplace.
These ideals are evidenced today in the lobby at Inkworks, where pamphlets on reproductive 'ights and green values are displayed near some of Inkworks' celebrated posters, one proclaiming 'No human being is illegal," and another, 'I am Trayvon.'

Collective decision-making, especially on complex issues such as addressing the downturn in business, can be 'a long and arduous process,' said Nobuo Nishi, a collective member since 1981. Such decisions are made by a supermajority of the 11 members, with dissenters coming to accept the decision. Decisions are not 'ramrodded through,' Nishi said.

The decision to sell the building they'd owned since 1987 came after several years of losses. The recession "was probably the dramatic turning point for us," Nishi said. 'We weren't ready when the bottom fell out in 2009.'

The recession hit Inkworks' nonprofit clients at the same time that technology made it easy for them to switch from printed materials to websites and online newsletters."











air quality report

3/24/14--6:40 PM--dry dirty air in warehouse front, mucus membrane irritation with "Spare the AIr Day , air".

3/25/14--3:17 AM--dry dirty air in warehouse front, mucus membrane irritation . 5:00 PM--off--and-on all AM and PM intermittent STRONG PERIODS of irritant at regular intervals--10 to 20 minutes, nausea, chills, VERY SERIOUS hacking cough. Marsha, difficult breathing with clogged nasal passages, head ache, hacking cough. Overrides 4 HEPA filters and respirator. 6:49 PM--"Spare the AIr Day , air IMMEDIATELY in front of warehouse.

3/26/14--7:17 PM--dry dirty air in warehouse front, mucus membrane irritation with "Spare the AIr Day , air. with "glass manufacturing" odor. 10:12 PM--similar.

3/27/14--1:38 AM--similar. 12:37 PM--similar.12:57 PM--similar. 3:00--similar. 5:17 PM--dry dirty air in warehouse front, mucus membrane irritation, hacking cough. Marsha, similar. 5:47 PM--same.

3/28/14--6:41 PM --dry dirty air in warehouse front, mucus membrane irritation.

3/29/14--9:17 AM--similar. 1:21 PM--similar with "Spare the AIr Day , air.













eternally useful links

You can find more information about our current weather conditions than is good for you at www.wunderground.com

Want to see weather coming in, going out, beautiful sunsets, and much, much more? Check out http://sv.berkeley.edu/view/ This very hip site was in an email from reader and contributor, Tony Almeida. Read Tony's Jimi Hendrix story on the only page that routinely gets more hits than Scrambled Eggs.



Richmond Ramblers' motorcycle club member, Cliff Miller emails a very

useful link

If you ever need to get a human being on the phone at a credit card company or bank, etc., this site tells you how to defeat their automated system and get you to a human being within a few seconds.




Best gas prices in 94710, as well as all of US and Canada, are here at gasbuddy.com

Kimar finds Costco routinely has the lowest price.



Bay Area home prices from sfgate.com

Bay Area foreclosures from sfgate.com


Our City Council update is here.

Our Planning Commision update is here




Our City of Berkeley Boards and Commissions page is here--redone and friendly.



All reports of crime-in-progress should first go to Berkeley PD dispatch--911 or non-emergency, 981-5900. THEN make sure you notify EACH of these City people.

The contacts are below:

Our Area Coordinator, Berkeley PD - 981-5774.

Ryan Lau, aid to Darryl Moore - 981-7120 rlau@ci.berkeley.ca.us

Darryl Moore, City Councilman dmoore@ci.berkeley.ca.us

AND check out BPD feature "Who are these Suspects."






The original owner of all posted material retains copyright. The material is used only to illustrate.