GOP incumbents losing fundraising fight with Dems in key California races

In a sign of Democrats’ enthusiasm over the chance to take back the House of Representatives, Democratic congressional candidates outraised Republicans in nearly all of California’s most competitive House races over the last fundraising period.


Feds aren’t with #SanFrancisco’s plan for safe injection sites

Screenshot 2018-07-16 at 07.17.38.pngSan Francisco Mayor London Breed has been warned by the city attorney that opening a real injection site, where drug users can shoot up under supervision, could get her in hot water with the federal government.

The Mayor and members of the the Board of Supervisors could be held criminally liable under federal drug statutes if they attempted to move ahead with the injection centers.

This is serious stuff. New guidelines issued by Attorney General Jeff Sessions in March apply the death penalty to numerous drug-related crimes under existing law.

City officials estimate that as many as 22,000 intravenous drug users shoot up in San Francisco, leaving behind tens of thousands of dirty needles in the process. San Francisco freely dispenses millions of clean needles a year on demand.

via Plan for safe injection site gets dose of reality over federal drug laws –

California Dems aren’t running on abortion rights

Screenshot 2018-07-16 at 07.12.52Democratic Party leaders and progressive groups portray Judge Brett Kavanaugh as a threat to abortion rights.

Except in districts where support for abortion rights isn’t the given that it is in the bluest parts of California.

Democrats running in the more conservative House districts that the party is trying to seize from Republicans aren’t rushing to make abortion their issue.

Most of the Democrats running in nine GOP-held House districts that the party thinks are in play aren’t taking their cues from the left.

via California Dems trying to flip the House aren’t running on abortion rights –

#HumboltCounty woman gets arrested all the time for narco-trafficking…never does much time

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Nancy Burks loves drugs.

For at least the third time since July 2017, 69-year-old Nancy Lee Burks of Eureka was arrested on suspicion of narcotics activity.

Less than three and a half hours later she was released from Humboldt County jail.

California Proposition 47 reduced penalties for some crimes, Proposition 57 increased parole and good behavior opportunities for nonviolent felons and Assembly Bill 109 transferred the responsibility for housing some felons from the state prisons to county jails.

So people like Nancy can do as many drugs as they want with little fear of prosecution.

Burks gets arrested a lot, but never seems to do much time. That’s because American love drugs.

The sales of narcotics is still a felony, but lawmakers have labeled it as a nonviolent offense. So it’s really no big deal to be a narco-trafficker anymore.

a Eureka woman’s multiple arrests exemplify Proposition 47, 57 issues

Judge censors #LATimes to protect crooked #Glendale cop

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Crooked Glendale cop John Saro Balian.

A federal judge has ordered the Los Angeles Times to remove information from an article that described a plea agreement between prosecutors and a Glendale police detective accused of working with the Mexican Mafia.

The Times decried the move as highly unusual and unconstitutional.

The agreement was supposed to have been filed under seal, but it was mistakenly made available on PACER, a public online database for federal court documents.

In response to the order from U.S. District Judge John F. Walter, The Times revised the article to eliminate information about the sealed document. The newspaper intends to contest the order.

“We believe that once material is in the public record, it is proper and appropriate to publish it if it is newsworthy,” said Norman Pearlstine, executive editor of the Los Angeles Times.

The detective, John Saro Balian, pleaded guilty on July 12 to three counts: lying to federal investigators about his links to organized crime, accepting a bribe and obstructing justice by tipping off a top criminal target about an upcoming federal raid.

After the article was published, Balian’s attorney sought a temporary restraining order, which Walter granted Saturday afternoon.


California Dems dump #Feinstein, #elitemedia stunned!

Screenshot 2018-05-23 at 07.15.29A stunned California press corps is reporting that the California Democratic Party “took a step to the left” by endorsing” liberal state lawmaker” Kevin de León for Senate.

It was a stinging rebuke of Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein.

The endorsement was an embarrassment for Feinstein, who is running for a fifth full term, and indicates that Democratic activists in California have soured on her flip-flopping on important issues, and wealthy inside-the-beltway lifestyle.

De León received 65% of the vote.

“We have presented Californians with the first real alternative to the worn-out Washington playbook in a quarter-century,” De León said in a statement shortly after the endorsement was announced.

via In rebuke of Dianne Feinstein, Kevin de León wins endorsement of California Democrats in Senate race

Fed-up resident slams #SanFrancisco in full-page Chronicle ad

Screenshot 2018-07-14 at 06.02.05An anonymous resident of San Francisco placed a full-page ad San Francisco Chronicle Friday to draw attention to the city’s homelessness crisis after an alleged experience with a scissors-wielding homeless man in a downtown cafe left her feeling “horrified.”

The woman detailed her account in the ad, titled “Watch your backs — nobody else is.”

“The San Francisco city fathers and those who should be held accountable for our public safety have for years let us down by catering to the lowest common denominator,” the ad says. “We, the tax paying, responsible contributing members of society have had our quality of life as San Franciscans seriously compromised, dangerously so.”

The homelessness crisis continues to stoke tensions in San Francisco, as city residents increasingly complain that they don’t feel safe walking around highly-trafficked areas with large homeless populations.


#SanctuaryState became a haven for chain saw psycho

Screenshot 2018-07-14 at 05.28.35Californians might be all that excited abut their sanctuary state law after reading about Alejandro Alvarez Villegas.

Villegas attacked his wife with a chain saw in their home with their three children inside, according to Whittier police. The 32-year-old then fled the scene in a stolen car.

Villegas had been deported 11 times since 2005, immigration officials said.

Department of Homeland Security databases indicate Mr. Alvarez-Villegas is a serial immigration violator.

Immigration officers have lodged a detainer against Alvarez, requesting that local authorities notify Immigration and Customs Enforcement before his release to allow them to take the man into custody.

It remains to be seen what law enforcement officials do.

Besides blatantly and repeatedly violating U.S. immigration laws, Alvarez pleaded no contest in 2013 to one count of unlawful possession of a controlled substance and one count of using or being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Later that year, he pleaded no contest to driving with a blood-alcohol content of 0.08% or higher.

via Man suspected of attacking wife with chain saw was deported 11 times

Climate Scientists Call on Jerry Brown to End Oil Extraction in California

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Over two dozen climate scientists sent a letter to California Governor Jerry Brown, urging him to phase out oil and gas production in the state before the start of the Global Climate Action Summit, a climate-focused conference in September.

The letter endorses earlier calls from more than 800 organizations and 100 local elected officials across the state for Brown to put an end to fossil fuel extraction in California, which is one of the nation’s top oil-producing states.

The climate scientists’ letter notes that the Paris Agreement’s target will be impossible to meet if oil and gas production continues unabated around the globe—and as the sixth-largest economy in the world, California is uniquely positioned to lead the way on a future without fossil fuels.

Shutting down thousands of wells and phasing out new extraction permits would reduce emissions by some 425 million metric tons over the next 12 years, the letter notes.

via Climate Scientists Call on Jerry Brown to End Oil Extraction in California – Pacific Standard

#CalPERS Reports 8.6% Gain, Beats Target

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CalPERS haters just got a bit of bad news.

The system, with $351 billion as of June 30, had an estimated 71 percent of the funds it needs to meet its long-term liabilities, up from 68 percent at the end of fiscal 2017. Its annual target is 7 percent. In the 2016-2017 fiscal period Calpers reported an 11.2 percent gain. Public pensions are struggling to meet long-term liabilities as they face obligations from a wave of longer-living retirees and as risks rise that the nine-year bull market will end.

“While we are pleased with the positive returns, we’re focused on improving our funded status,” said Marcie Frost, Calpers chief executive officer, in the statement. “This will take time and will require us to explore new, forward-thinking approaches to our investments, particularly in private equity.”

via Calpers Reports 8.6% Gain on Investments, Beating Its Target – Bloomberg

California ordered to restore $331 million to fund for homeowners

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Governor Jerry Brown

When California received $410 million in 2012 as part of a nationwide settlement with major banks accused of abusive foreclosures, Gov. Jerry Brown used $331 million to pay state agencies in housing and other programs to cover their deficits.

Now a state appeals court has ordered the money be used for its original intent: to help homeowners who suffered foreclosures.

The money was “unlawfully diverted” from a settlement fund that was designated for programs directly assisting homeowners, the Third District Court of Appeal in Sacramento said Tuesday. A Sacramento County judge had reached the same conclusion but found he lacked authority to order the state to redirect the money, a finding the appeals court rejected.

via California ordered to restore $331 million to fund for homeowners –

Assemblyman Devon Mathis Reprimanded For Sexual Comments

Screenshot 2018-07-12 at 10.50.56.pngCalifornia Assemblyman Devon Mathis was reprimanded last month for making sexual comments.

The Assembly Rules Committee says Mathis’ comments violated the chamber’s sexual harassment policy.

Mathis’s office says the unsubstantiated allegation stemmed from a political blog post accusing Mathis of sexual assault based on an anonymous interview with someone who claimed to have knowledge of it.

Mathis will be required to complete sensitivity training.

via California Lawmaker Reprimanded For Sexual Comments –

Kern Count supervisors rush to throw more money at red-neck buffoon sheriff

Screenshot 2018-07-11 at 07.23.17.pngSupervisors voted 4-0 to direct county counsel to draft the question that could appear on the ballot in November, potentially raising the sales tax in the unincorporated county from 7.25 percent to 8.25 percent.

Fifth District Supervisor Leticia Perez was absent from the meeting.

Facing an Aug. 10 deadline, the supervisors have one scheduled meeting left, on July 24, to decide on giving unincorporated county voters the opportunity to raise their sales tax 1 cent for every dollar spent.

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood brought the proposal to the supervisors. He said his department needs the funds to bolster the ranks of deputies, which have been depleted after years of lean budgets.

Complicating the matter is a measure already approved by the Bakersfield City Council that could result in a 1 percent sales tax increase for city transactions.

If passed, the city plans to spend the money partially on public safety measures.

You may recall that this Youngblood is the same red-neck buffoon who said that it is better “financially” to kill suspects than to “cripple” them.

via Over objections, county sales tax measure survives first hurdle | News |

Union stooge Joe Marshall rejected by Police Commission

Screenshot 2018-07-11 at 06.54.21.pngSupervisor Sandra Fewer made the motion to reject Marshall’s reappointment Tuesday, saying “After watching the Rules Committee meeting yesterday I am compelled to make a motion to reject the mayor’s nomination for the reappointment.”

During that hearing, Board President Malia Cohen had a series of tense exchanges with Marshall where she called into question his willingness to stand up to the San Francisco Police Officers Association and his commitment to implementing police reform.

She also noted that Marshall sided with the union in his support for the controversial neck hold called the carotid restraint. The commission banned officers from using this hold in December 2016.

Police reform supporters had also criticized Marshall and called on the board to reject his reappointment.

They are of course correct. Marshall is a tool of the San Francisco Police Officers Association. His “leadership” is of no value to the community.  Good riddance.

via Board bucks Farrell, Breed, rejects reappointment of Joe Marshall to Police Commission – by j_sabatini – July 10, 2018 – The San Francisco Examiner

Hideous #racist #SanBernardinoCounty Prosecutor Put on Leave

Screenshot 2018-07-10 at 07.26.02.pngThe hideous racist gang prosecutor in San Bernardino County has been put on administrative leave while the District Attorney’s Office investigates discriminatory comments he made on social media.

San Bernardino County Deputy District Attorney Michael Selyem made profanity-laced comments about Rep. Maxine Waters, former first lady Michelle Obama and Mexican immigrants.

In one post, Selyem wrote of Waters, saying “being a loud-mouthed (expletive) in the ghetto you would think someone would have shot this (expletive) by now.”

In another he speaks of a suspect in an officer-involved shooting, saying “That s-bag got what he deserved” and “had he stopped being a complete (expletive) and listened to the police, he wouldn’t have gotten shot.”

Both Selyem’s Facebook and Instagram accounts have been deleted.

Selyem, who has been a lead attorney in the Central Hardcore Gang Unit for 12 years, faces disciplinary action that could include termination.

He deserves to be fired.

via Top San Bernardino County Gang Prosecutor Put on Leave After Racist, Violent Comments Posted Online – NBC Southern California

Adios California…Tesla plans China factory that can make 500,000 vehicles a year

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Adios California.

As expected, Tesla Inc. has reached a preliminary agreement with the Shanghai government to build a factory that would rival production from its lone U.S. assembly plant, as Elon Musk takes his biggest step yet to expand overseas.

The electric-car maker’s planned capacity for the factory is 500,000 vehicles a year, the Shanghai government said in a statement. Bloomberg reported earlier that Musk, Tesla’s chief executive, would be in the city for an event with the government Tuesday. A Tesla representative in China didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Tesla shares rose in early trading Tuesday.

via Tesla plans China factory that can make 500,000 vehicles a year

White supremacists continue to dominate the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department

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Deputies sport their own gang tattoos.

For decades, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has struggled to combat secretive cliques of deputies who bonded over aggressive, often violent police work and branded themselves with matching tattoos.

A federal judge called out the problem nearly 30 years ago, accusing deputies of running a “neo-Nazi, white supremacist gang” named the Vikings within the Lynwood station. Others followed with names such as the Regulators, Grim Reapers, Rattlesnakes and the Jump Out Boys. Inside the county’s central jail, the 2000 Boys and 3000 Boys ran roughshod over the lockup’s toughest floors.

Now, despite past attempts by sheriff’s officials to discourage internal cliques, fresh allegations have arisen of deputies in the department’s Compton station adorned with matching skull tattoos.

One deputy acknowledged in a recent deposition that he and 10 to 20 of his colleagues at the station had the tattoos but denied there was a formal clique. No rational person would believe him.

“Tolerant” Los Angeles remains dominated by white supremacist cops.

via After decades of problems, new allegations surface of a secret clique within L.A. County Sheriff’s Department

Appeals court says #SanFrancisco can keep trashing #HetchHetchy

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The tolerant and environmentally friendly people of San Francisco can continue trashing the Hetch Hetchy valley.

The push to drain Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy Reservoir and restore the Sierra canyon to its natural state was rejected by the courts — again — Monday, though opponents of the dam said they plan to take their fight to the California Supreme Court.

In a legal case that has been a thorn in the side of the city of San Francisco, California’s Fifth District Court of Appeal in Fresno ruled that a Tuolumne County judge was correct two years ago when he tossed a lawsuit seeking to raze the city-run reservoir.

Restore Hetch Hetchy, a Berkeley group, has argued that San Francisco should not have rooted its water supply in a national park because it overran a pristine valley and violated a provision of the state Constitution requiring reasonable water use. But the appeals court agreed with the lower court that the city had federal permission to build the reservoir and didn’t need to meet the state standard.

via Appeals court rejects effort to tear down Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy Reservoir –

CEQA is how rich lawyers get even richer

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California Governor Ronald Reagan

For critics of the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, this case is a poster child for the need for reform. Signed by Gov. Ronald Reagan in 1970 and often referred to as “see-kwuh,” the law calls for “preventing environmental damage, while providing a decent home and satisfying living environment for every Californian.”

Environmentalists say CEQA does just that, supplying some of the strongest protection and transparency in the nation.

“CEQA is the fundamental law in California for environmental protection that also protects the right of the public to be informed about projects that are going into our neighborhood,” said David Pettit, an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council.

But critics, particularly developers, say court decisions and opportunists have broadened and weaponized the law so it actively impedes housing, particularly in urban areas.

“This is not about the environment,” said Jennifer Hernandez, an attorney at Holland & Knight and one of the state’s most vocal advocates for change to the law. “This signature environmental law is being hijacked to advance economic interests.

via Is California’s Legacy Environmental Law Protecting The State’s Beauty Or Blocking Affordable Housing? –

Hate crime data suggests California probably doesn’t like you very much

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California Attorney General Xavier Becerra

You’re probably not very popular with the “tolerant” people of California. 

The number of hate crimes reported in California surged more than 17 percent between 2016 and 2017, according to new data released Monday by the state Department of Justice.

The third straight year of double-digit increases. Local law enforcement reported 1,093 hate crimes last year.

Californians have real problems with Islamics, LGBTQ’s and people of color. They aren’t too keen on Jews and the homeless either.

via California hate crimes increased in 2017 | The Fresno Bee

#SanBernardinoCounty hasn’t done much to stop brutally #racist Deputy D.A.

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Deputy District Attorney Michael Selyem

The lead hard-core gang prosecutor in the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office is under investigation for a series of offensive rants on social media, triggering demands for his dismissal.

Deputy District Attorney Michael Selyem, who joined the D.A.’s Office 12 years ago, targeted outspoken U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, former first lady Michelle Obama, Mexican immigrants and the victim of a police shooting in Facebook and Instagram posts.

Selyem is the lead attorney in a unit tasked with cracking down on criminal gang activity. Selyem is now the subject of an internal investigation, sources said.

Selyem hung up on a reporter when reached by phone. He did not return calls and emails seeking comment on the posts that appeared under his name. Both his Facebook and Instagram accounts have been deleted.

Before his accounts were deleted, Selyem’s rants were captured in screenshots.

Selyem apparently is an ardent supporter of President Donald Trump. Beneath a Facebook post offering free tickets to Trump’s presidential inauguration, Selyem wrote, “I love that all of you liberal f—–g p—–s are so filled with hate. Gonna be a long 8 years for you scumbags. choo choo trump”

Basically this guy Selyem is a brutal racist thug. He shouldn’t be allowed to have a badge or a firearm. As long as he’s holding down a public position as an officer of the courts no one in San Bernardino County is safe.


#SiliconValley firms are facing a rise in anger from a new source: Their own employees

Thousands of tech workers from top companies, including Google, Amazonand Microsoft, have recently led large-scale internal rebellions against their employers. The wave of employee outrage is largely over the use of companies’ technology in controversial government contracts — from facial recognition software sold to law enforcement, to drone technology for the military and work with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

California Prosecutor Wonders Why ‘Ghetto’ Maxine Waters Hasn’t Been Shot

Zeke Hernandez, president of the Santa Ana League of United Latin American Citizens told The Sun, “It is disgusting that a public official sworn to protect the public would have these ugly viewpoints,” he said. “The district attorney needs to take any and all appropriate action to let the public know that it does not agree with Selyem’s hateful rhetoric.”

#JeffDenham threatens to block border wall funding

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Rep. Jeff Denham

Failed Republican efforts on immigration reform could jeopardize support within the party for President Donald Trump’s wall funding — and Trump has threatened to shut down the government if he doesn’t get it.

Republicans who pushed a bill that would have granted a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers along with $25 billion in border security gave a range of answers when McClatchy asked if they would still support funding the wall without action for Dreamers. Their bill failed last week by a large margin.

But one leader in that effort, California Republican Rep. Jeff Denham, who took a 30-second pause before answering the question, said it does put his vote at risk.

“I’ve been very clear that I want a permanent fix for Dreamers …. that has to be a part of any solution,” Denham told McClatchy, referring to people who came into the country illegally as children with their parents.

via Immigration failure risks GOP support for wall funding | Merced Sun-Star

Lucio Lanza, #SiliconValley’s latest sex criminal

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Lucio Lanza

Lucio Lanza has been sued by startup founder Rachel Danae Vachata, 29, who alleges a drunken Lanza groped and sexually harassed her in the summer of 2017 after sitting next to her on a red-eye commercial flight.

Three additional women who have told the Mercury News they were sexually harassed by Lanza, 73, who runs a venture capital firm in Palo Alto.

The women described strikingly similar incidents in which Lanza groped them suddenly and without permission in public settings.

The three women all worked in a tech sector in which Lanza is among the most important funders.

Naturally, Lanza denies any inappropriate behavior.

However the evidence seems to indicate he’s pretty much a drunken sex criminal.

via 3 women allege Silicon Valley venture capitalist groped them

San Francisco balks at funding additional sources of water, like desalination

San Francisco, as well as numerous urban and agricultural water suppliers, under the plan would face new limits on how much water it draws from the San Joaquin River and its tributaries in the Sierra Nevada.

While the restrictions would help move once free-flowing waterways closer to their natural states, providing a boon for the freshwater-starved Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta and such threatened fish as coho salmon, the effort comes as cities and farms are already facing tighter water supplies because of changing climate and drought.

Many fear they won’t get the water they need or will have to pay a lot more for it going forward.

San Francisco officials were still reviewing the plan, but they said they, too, were yet to find improvements from a proposal released last year.

The Public Utilities Commission had warned that the initial plan, if left unmodified, would force new water restrictions on city residents or raise customer rates in order to fund additional sources of water, like desalination.

The agency, which serves San Francisco and many Bay Area suburbs, has largely been free of regulation because of privileged water rights at Hetch Hetchy Reservoir in Yosemite. Hetch Hetchy, however, sits on the Tuolumne River, one of the rivers now targeted for higher flows.

via SF would face new limits under state water proposal –

Berkeley doctors gave boy marijuana

The high-concentration cannabidiol strain had never been given to children and was illegal in the United States.

Now, after six years and a clinical trial led by UCSF, the drug is available for others.

It is the first time the FDA has approved a medicine derived from marijuana. It won’t work for every patient.

via Berkeley boy was ‘Patient X’ in first FDA-approved medicine derived from marijuana –

Time to ban the internet: Gangs make untraceable guns from online parts

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No doubt the police and their friends in the gun confiscation community will be calling for the shutdown of the internet soon.

As expected, criminals are not heeding strict state and federal gun laws. They’re turning to online retailers to buy all the parts necessary to build their own weapons.

These semiautomatic rifles and pistols are different — because they are homemade and untraceable.

So much for California’s draconian gun laws. Gangs have simply turned to homemade guns as it becomes more difficult to acquire real ones.

“Ghost guns” don’t have the traditional serial numbers because they are built from parts purchased over the internet.

These weapons are effectively unknown to law enforcement, making them difficult to track or trace.

People forbidden from purchasing a gun, such as felons and those with documented mental health issues, can still buy all the parts necessary to build their own weapon online.

via L.A. gangs stockpile untraceable ‘ghost guns’ that members make themselves

Google defends developers who read your Gmail

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Google went on the defensive this week after a report revealed instances in which human employees of third-party app developers sifted through Gmail users’ emails.

“No one at Google reads your Gmail, except in very specific cases where you ask us to and give consent, or where we need to for security purposes, such as investigating a bug or abuse,” Suzanne Frey, director of security, trust and privacy for Google Cloud, wrote in a blog post Tuesday.

But Gmail users who give apps access to their emails do so at their own risk. Frey said third-party app developers go through both automated and manual reviews.

The Gmail questions come in the aftermath of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal, which highlighted the access that third-party app developers have to Facebook users’ personal information.

In that case, the political data firm accessed the information of up to 87 million users of the social network without their permission after buying the data from a Cambridge University researcher.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg later told news site Vox that the company can “stop messages from going through,” and the company confirmed to Bloomberg that it can scan through Messenger users’ messages automatically.


Feinstein admits she can’t get the California Democratic Party endorsement

Screenshot 2018-07-06 at 05.51.26.pngCiting a need for unity, Sen. Dianne Feinstein won’t seek the California Democratic Party endorsement she was unlikely to receive anyway in her re-election campaign.

“I am respectfully asking you to vote no endorsement in the U.S. Senate race,” Feinstein said in a “Dear Friend” letter to the 350-plus party executive board members who will vote on the endorsements July 14 in Oakland. “Republicans would like nothing more than to see Democrats fighting each other … at the exact time we need to come together and focus on the general election.”

The party’s increasingly progressive rank and file has moved from Feinstein’s more moderate and pragmatic views.

It saves her a lot of embarrassment.

For Kevin de León’s supporters, Feinstein’s announcement was little more than a face-saving measure after she realized that her chance of winning an outright endorsement was slim at best.


via Feinstein won’t seek California Democratic Party endorsement –

California net neutrality bill strengthened after lawmakers reach deal

The key protections that were removed, will be restored. The exact language of the bill won’t be made public until August, when the Legislature returns from summer recess and it can be officially amended into SB822.

Net neutrality bars broadband and wireless internet providers from using their networks to favor certain websites and apps, especially those they own or have financial ties to, over others.

The bill has drawn intense interest across the country, with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi — who rarely weighs in on state legislation — pushing for California to pass the bill in hopes that other states will do the same as a backdoor to restoring the regulations.

via California net neutrality bill strengthened after lawmakers reach deal –

Newsom quickly runs away from “open borders” label

Screenshot 2018-07-05 at 06.43.27.pngPresident Trump “has transformed ICE into a cruel deportation force, one that targets and detains children and law-abiding families with the same intensity as high-level criminals,” Newsom said Tuesday in a statement to The Chronicle. “The agency needs fundamental reforms, and most of all, we need a president who respects immigrants and their families.”

That position puts Newsom in the same neighborhood as another California Democrat, Sen. Kamala Harris, who called last week for “starting from scratch” with an overhaul of the 15-year-old agency.

Newsom staked out his position on the same day as Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. Sanders, who like Harris is pondering a presidential run in 2020, called for “restructuring” ICE.

Like other possible Democratic presidential hopefuls, Sanders is steering clear of calling for “abolishing” ICE, a battle cry on the left that has led President Trump to accuse Democrats of advocating “open borders.”

a Newsom calls for ‘fundamental reforms’ for ICE –

Enter soon for chance to score $375,000 in San Francisco’s down-payment lottery

Screenshot 2018-07-05 at 06.37.58.pngLow- and middle-income home buyers who enter a lottery this month could win up to $375,000 toward the purchase of a house or condo in San Francisco.

The deadline for entering the city’s Downpayment Loan Assistance Program is July 31, but entrants must first take a home buyer education workshop and get prequalified for a mortgage from a participating lender.

The down-payment assistance is a no-interest, 30-year loan that requires no monthly payments. It’s due when the owner sells, moves, transfers title or decides to repay it.

At that point, the owner pays the original loan amount and a proportionate share of any increase in the home’s value (determined by the sales price or an appraisal).

The city has $15.2 million available this year, which could fund at least 40 loans. Last year, it had about $10 million available and funded 26 loans, with four more pending. The program received about 200 applications, so the odds of winning were almost 7-1 — much better than other city housing programs.

via Enter soon for chance to score $375,000 in SF down-payment lottery –

The past three years have been particularly dismal for affordable housing in Sacramento

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Darrell Steinberg
Mayor of Sacramento

The past three years have been particularly dismal for affordable housing in Sacramento, a city that had previously distinguished itself from affluent suburbs by requiring developers to accommodate low-income residents.

Of the 5,500 housing-unit building permits issued by the city between 2015 and 2017, only 98 were for apartments or houses that people with salaries in the minimum wage range or a little higher could afford, according to a city review. And none of those 98 got any city help.

At the same time, Sacramento rent hikes have topped the nation among large cities. The average rent in downtown and midtown Sacramento now stands at $1,786 for an 848-square-foot apartment, according to Colliers International research.

via Sacramento housing crisis: City, state changes hurt affordable housing | The Sacramento Bee

40 pounds of human poop found on San Francisco sidewalk

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“Plenty of things smell bad/weird/nasty, but the sheer stench of this was massive.”

Trash bags full of approximately 20 pounds of human poop were left on the sidewalk over the weekend in downtown San Francisco.

It’s the latest – and perhaps most alarming – sign of the increased filthiness in the city.

The bags of human poop were said to be left in the Tenderloin district.

Some of excrement seeped through the bags and onto the curbside.

An investigation by NBC Bay Area revealed a feces, drug needles and garbage could be found throughout downtown San Francisco.

via 40 pounds of human poop found on San Francisco sidewalk | The Fresno Bee

Three Truths About Abortion and the Supreme Court

In short: Most Americans do not want a ban on abortion, and favor its availability especially early in pregnancy and in cases of rape and incest, threats to the mother’s life, and severe fetal abnormality.

But they also favor restrictions that are incompatible with current Supreme Court jurisprudence.

What is WeChat? Chinese-language app could be fueling Chinese-American conservatism

WeChat, the hugely popular social media app developed by Chinese internet company Tencent, has grown to become an indispensable tool in the lives of both Chinese citizens and first-generation Chinese-speaking immigrants in the U.S.

Part Facebook, part Twitter, part WhatsApp, WeChat helps to forge social connections among groups of people with similar interests, in everything from consumerism to politics. And it also provides its 1 billion monthly active users worldwide with news and information.

Workers afraid to take bathroom breaks inside Amazon’s fast-paced warehouse world

Screenshot 2018-07-03 at 10.14.34James Bloodworth spent several weeks at Amazon working the requisite 10-hour shifts, four days a week, at a warehouse in the West Midlands countryside. Seeking to write about the plight of the working class, he also worked at a call center, as an Uber driver, on a building site and as a home aide caring for the elderly.

“Amazon was the worst employer, easily,” the author said by phone.

When he took a day off sick, he received a “point.” Earn six and you’re fired, he said.

Bloodworth said he heard of one person getting a point because she had to leave early to see her child in the hospital, and he talked to another who got a point for failing to hit her rate.

At the warehouse where he worked, Amazon monitored everbody’s rate through a handheld device — tracking “our every move as if we were convicts out on house arrest,” he writes.

via Under pressure, afraid to take bathroom breaks? Inside Amazon’s fast-paced warehouse world | The Seattle Times

Denham locked out of child immigrant center

The cry of a child could be heard just inside the nondescript, brown detention facility in Pleasant Hill, California, a San Francisco suburb, and Rep. Jeff Denham wanted to see for himself what was inside.

He knocked on the door and waited about five minutes, alternatively silent, knocking some more and asking the security guard if employees inside were aware he was out there. The guard eventually told him the employees inside had been instructed to not answer the door, not to even speak to him.

He’d been trying for more than a week to tour the facility.

Denham, who faces one of the nation’s most competitive re-election battles this year, said he made the journey to the center to see conditions for himself as Congress considers immigration legislation and confronts the outcry over separated families.

The facility is run by Southwest Key Programs, a nonprofit being paid by the federal government to care for the children.

a Rep. Jeff Denham locked out of child immigrant center | The Modesto Bee

AT&T is hiking the price of DirecTV Now after promising lower consumer prices in Time Warner trial

AT&T Inc. told a federal judge this year that its landmark merger with Time Warner Inc. probably would result in lower prices for its DirecTV customers. But the telecom giant is now saying that it will raise the price of DirecTV’s online streaming service, DirecTV Now, by $5 a month for new and existing customers.

The decision affects all service tiers of the product. AT&T said its decision was driven by industry trends.

The price hike takes effect July 26 for new customers and possibly later for existing customers based on their billing dates. If applied across DirecTV Now’s entire user base of nearly 1.5 million customers, the price increase could mean more than $87.5 million a year in new revenue for AT&T.

via AT&T is hiking the price of DirecTV Now after promising lower consumer prices in Time Warner trial

Ahead of key net neutrality vote, AT&T raises obscure fee to make an extra $970 million a year

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Battling for its life in Sacramento to stop legislation which would preserve net neutrality in California, AT&T Inc.’s wireless customers are expected to pay almost $1 billion more every year to the company after AT&T increased a monthly “administrative fee” in a move that went largely unnoticed, according to an industry analyst.

The analyst, Walt Piecyk of BTIG, initially estimated that AT&T could pocket about $800 million more per year from the higher fee, before revising that figure upward to $970 million once he learned that the fee hike also will affect tablets and smartwatches on AT&T’s network, not just cellphones.

“Some people might not get hit till next cycle,” Piecyk said.

The higher fee reflects a 58% increase over its previous level of $1.26 per line. The fee is now more than three times what it was when AT&T first introduced it in 2013.

via AT&T is raising an obscure fee to make an extra $970 million a year, analyst says

Plea Deal For Men Accused In Ghost Ship Fire

Screenshot 2018-07-03 at 07.40.22.pngNew details have emerged on the plea deals in the deadly Ghost Ship warehouse fire.

According to the East Bay Times, Derick Almena will get nine years behind bars and Max Harris will get six.

The men will serve those sentences at the Alameda County Jail, not in state prison, and get credit for time served.

Each will plead “no contest” to 36 counts of involuntary manslaughter, according to the report.

via Details Emerge On Plea Deal For Men Accused In Ghost Ship Fire « CBS San Francisco

Now is the moment to revisit the legality of the U.S.-Mexico border

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Take the matter out of Congress’ hands.

Put it in the hands of the American and Mexican people.

Go back — all the way back — to its source: the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.

So let’s disrupt the current impasse and innovate the Treaty of Guadalupe 2.0. Impossible? Not really.

via Now is the moment to revisit the legality of the U.S.-Mexico border –

San Francisco’s appalling street life repels residents — now it’s driven away a convention

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In a move that is alarming San Francisco’s biggest industry, a major medical association is pulling its annual convention out of the city — saying its members no longer feel safe.

“It’s the first time that we have had an out-and-out cancellation over the issue, and this is a group that has been coming here every three or four years since the 1980s,” said Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO of S.F. Travel, the city’s convention bureau.

D’Alessandro declined to name the medical association, saying the bureau still hopes to bring the group back in the future.

via SF’s appalling street life repels residents — now it’s driven away a convention –

Special interests use California ballot to flex muscle

Putting a measure on the ballot — a process intended to give ordinary Californians more of a say in the laws that govern them — has become prohibitively expensive for people without personal wealth or interest group backing. It can cost millions to collect enough signatures to qualify a measure and many millions more to convince voters to pass it.

First Drug Using Cannabis Compound Gets Federal Approval, But Will California Docs Be Able To Prescribe It?

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In California, any product containing CBD is regulated by the state’s Medicinal and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act. It’s considered a highly controlled substance, and doctors can’t prescribe it.

Democratic Assemblymember Jim Wood authored a new bil (AB710) that would make it so any CBD drug approved by the FDA and designated as at least a schedule two drug — the second strictest drug category— can be treated like any other prescription medication.

Right now, Epidiolex is approved as a schedule one substance, but the Drug Enforcement Agency is expected to change it to a schedule two soon.

via First Drug Using Cannabis Compound Gets Federal Approval, But Will California Docs Be Able To Prescribe It? –

PG&E customers may see fee hike in light of North Bay fires

Senate Bill 819, currently approved by the state Senate and pending in the Assembly, would require the CPUC to apply a “reasonableness” standard in this determination, ensuring utility customers protection from any costs resulting from PG&E’s negligence. It remains to be seen whether PG&E will be allowed to shift no-fault inverse condemnation damages onto the general public.

via PG&E customers may see fee hike in light of North Bay fires – by Christopher_B_Dolan – June 28, 2018 – The San Francisco Examiner

Facebook gave preferential treatment to 61 companies after restricting user data back in 2015

Facebook has admitted that it gave dozens of companies access to its users’ data after saying it had restricted access to such data back in 2015, the latest wrinkle in a firestorm over how the social network manages user information.

Californians cross border to vote in Mexican election

Mexicans living abroad have since 2006 had the option of casting votes by mail in their country’s presidential elections. This year’s election for the first time allowed them to register without returning to Mexico, and more than 180,000 had done so by May, according to the Electoral Institute.

Profiles in corruption: How telecoms control the state Legislature

At about 10pm, Assemblyman Miguel Santiago’s Conveyance and Communications Committee released amendments designed to gut the bill, allowing the telcos and cable companies to charge content providers for the privilege of reaching consumers (that would be you, dear reader), even though you are paying for Internet access service that promises non-discriminatory end-to-end access to all content on the Internet.

Under the Santiago amendments, carriers like AT&T and Comcast could collect twice every time you view a Netflix film or other content, once in your monthly bill, and once from the content provider.

The Hill: Maxine Waters on criticism from Schumer: Leadership will do anything to protect their power

“You know, I was surprised at Chuck Schumer, you know reached into the other house to do that,” Waters said when asked by MSNBC host Joy Reid if she was surprised to see leaders in her own party criticizing her. “I’ve not quite seen that done before. But one of the things I recognize, being an elected official, is in the final analysis, you know, leadership will do anything that they think is necessary to protect their leadership.”

Businesses Blast California’s New Data-Privacy Law – WSJ

Businesses across the U.S. panned California’s new consumer-privacy legislation, saying it risked far-reaching damage to everything from retailers’ customer-loyalty programs to data gathering by Silicon Valley tech giants.

The bill, which was introduced one week before it was passed and was largely sold as a way to rein in big tech firms, sweeps up a range of businesses. It requires them to offer consumers options to opt out of sharing personal information, and it gives Californians the right to prohibit the sale of their personal data.

Companies late last week were working out what they now may need to do to strengthen their privacy practices, or, in the case of some Silicon Valley firms, preparing to lobby hard for changes to the law before it takes effect in 2020. One attorney said many law firms see the new bill as generating a “bonanza” in fees as companies rush to either comply or push for changes.

via Businesses Blast California’s New Data-Privacy Law – WSJ

In #SiliconValley, #MeToo harassment is becoming old news

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The Mercury News recently reported that Intel CEO Brian Krzanich resigned because of sex crimes.

According to the Merc, the company learned of what it called a consensual relationship he had with an employee. Because Intel is such a good corporate citizen, Krzanich did the right thing.

Yeah, right.

The reality is Krzanich is just another feckless Silicon Valley sex criminals who uses wealth and power against women who work for them.

Even though these crimes keep continuing in Silicon Valley, seemingly unabated, the hubbub has been tamped down considerably. Public relations pros are figuring out how to extricate the companies from these unflattering and probably illegal situations with relatively little public fallout.

As a result, in Silicon Valley, #MeToo harassment is becoming old news. It’s a bad sign for women.