Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out
Your Federal Quarterly Tax Payments are due April 15th Get Help Now >>

April 27May 3_ 2011


									                                                                          April 27—May 3, 2011

                                                         Updated daily at

  City Council Moves Branch Library Demolitions Forward, Sets Hearings
  First Protest Against Sitting Prohibition Proposal Pronounced a Success
  BAHA Spring House Tour Will Explore Picturesque Villas in Arlington Heights
  Jack Bragen: On Mental Illness: Responding to the Anti-Psychiatry Movement

 Hints at Racism in Berkeley Library Demolition Dispute Must End Now
                                                              By Becky O’Malley

   Stop. Now. It’s time, right now, to put a stop to an ugly undercur-    African-American or European-American Berkeleyan who wittingly
rent which has crept into the discussion of whether it’s a good idea      or unwittingly allows himself or herself to be associated with it is
to demolish two of Berkeley’s branch libraries in order to rebuild        doing a tremendous disservice to the public interest and to the cause
them.                                                                     of interracial harmony.
   This has absolutely nothing to do with historical preservation or         If there’s any history of racism to be uncovered in this discussion,
architectural merit, but it has everything to do with civil discourse     historians might ask why the existing South and West branch build-
and what we want Berkeley to be. What is disturbing is a spate of         ings were allowed to deteriorate to the point where many in good
thinly veiled accusations of racism directed against the plaintiffs in    faith believe that they cannot be salvaged. Why did the citizens of
the environmental lawsuit regarding the city’s plans to replace the       North Berkeley and the Claremont district get architecturally signifi-
library buildings in South and West Berkeley.                             cant and sturdy branch libraries in the first place, while South and
   At last night’s rally to support demolition, I heard Councilmem-       West Berkeley seem to have gotten lesser structures which are now
ber Max Anderson, an African-American, refer to “standing in the          described by some as falling apart? That was the true racism, but
library door”. This publication seldom identifies speakers by race,       what the appropriate remedy should be is open for discussion.
but this time it’s relevant because of the historic associations with        The people who support renovation of branch libraries instead of
that choice of words.                                                     replacement sincerely believe that this will result in better libraries
   The few younger people present last night might not have caught        for the people who live in South and West Berkeley. They’ve gone to
the allusion, but for veterans of the civil rights struggles of the 50s   the trouble of paying a well-regarded architect to draw up alternative
and 60s, who include both Anderson and me, it echoes the famous           plans, an architect who has received awards for his brilliant adaptive
stance of segregationist Alabama Governor George Wallace, who             re-design of Richmond’s Municipal Natatorium (swimming pool).
described himself as “standing in the schoolhouse door.” That’s dirty     His design, whether or not it’s finally determined to be better or less
pool, and it should end right here, right now.                            expensive, is certainly larger than the buildings the city of Berke-
   Another speaker, an older African-American minister, referred to       ley and the Library Foundation promise in their demolish-rebuild
the bad old days “back in Lousiana”—nothing specific, but again, to       schema.
us oldtimers, clear enough.                                                  Those of us who took an active part in the civil rights movement
   These comments, sadly, confirmed what I’d picked up in the last        remember when “divide and conquer” was a popular strategy on the
couple of weeks on the gossip circuit. It seems that there are some       part of those who opposed progress toward racial equality. It was a
demolition proponents who would like to create the impression             normal tactic to seek out “Negro community leaders” willing to aver
that demolition opponents don’t want Berkeley’s children of color         that what the White People In Charge were doing was just fine, and
to have nice libraries. This canard is absolutely untrue, and any         it sometimes worked for a while. But it would be a grievous mistake
                                                                          for Berkeley’s current generation of prominent African-Americans,
some of whom I count as good friends, to           Capitelli, Maio and Moore—had earlier                However the Council then voted to set
allow themselves to be used by those with          gone down to the front steps of old City Hall     public hearings on the demolition of the
other agendas in a discussion which has            to participate in a pep rally by library de-      South and West branch libraries.
nothing to do with race. And it verges on          molition / rebuild supporters. The first three       Before the vote, Councilmember Maio
criminal when European-American Berke-             spoke, essentially telling the small crowd of     commented, “I don’t understand where
leyans perpetrate these vicious accusations        demolition supporters that they agreed with       people who are opposing moving ahead on
sub rosa.                                          the goals of the rally.                           these libraries think we’re going to go…It’s
   It is crucial that we all agree that every-        Then they returned upstairs to participate     time to look to the future. If there were mis-
one involved in this dispute wants nothing         in the meeting that had the “quasi-judicial”      takes made or there was somehow people
but the best possible branch libraries for all     function of reviewing the zoning amend-           felt that they were misled, is that a reason
sections of Berkeley. It’s perfectly okay to       ments and use permit proposals pertaining to      to have no libraries of modern construction
argue strenuously on behalf of one plan or         the South and West branch libraries.              for the children, seniors, disabled, people in
the other, and it’s even okay for the plaintiffs      While it finally approved the zoning           West Berkeley? I don’t think so.”
to seek the remedies provided for by law if        amendment that would make it easier to               “And I really have to say I don’t under-
they wish. We’ve published dramatic essays         build the proposed new branch library struc-      stand the continued opposition to
on all sides of the dispute in this space, and     tures, the Council added, on Worthington’s           our libraries, which are our treasures. I
we’re happy to get more from all partici-          motion with Wengraf’s second, a qualifica-        simply don’t get it.”
pants.                                             tion that “This ordinance shall apply only           Judith Epstein from Concerned Library
   But right now, let’s all agree that differ-     to the four neighborhood branch library           Users, which has sued the City over the use
ences of opinion about branch library design       projects funded by Measure FF.”                   of Measure FF funds and the zoning amend-
have absolutely nothing to do with race or            Previous language would have applied the       ment, came to the podium during the public
with racism. I’d even go so far as to say that     standards to all five Berkeley Public Library     comment session following the vote to speak
Judith Epstein, the only person courageous         sites and continued the relaxed zoning stan-      to Maio’s remarks.
enough to be a named plaintiff in the Con-         dards into perpetuity. The wording change            “Councilmember Maio, you mischaracter-
cerned Library Users’ environmental impact         limits the zoning alterations to only the four    ized what the opposition to the use of Mea-
lawsuit, is owed an immediate apology by           projects the City proposes to fund with bond      sure FF money for demolitions is”, Epstein
anyone who has suggested, by direct state-         money from the voter approved Measure FF          said. “If it is something that as you say you
ment or oblique hint, that her motives are         in 2008.                                          truly do not understand, I would be more
racist in origin. She might be wrong, dead            Two concerns which the amendment               than happy to discuss it with you.”
wrong, but she’s no racist, and it’s a serious     apparently addressed were that the zoning
injustice to suggest otherwise.                                                                         “I have seen your writings. I understand
                                                   changes as originally proposed would apply        what you are saying. I don’t understand the
                                                   to the library sites in perpetuity, beyond the    motive,” Maio retorted.
                                                   currently planned renovations, and would
                                                                                                        As Epstein started to answer, Coun-
                                                   also loosen the development review proce-
                                                                                                     cilmember Wozniak interrupted with a mo-
                                                   dures not only for the four branch library
                                                                                                     tion to adjourn the meeting in the middle of
                                                   sites but also the historic Central Library, in
                                                                                                     her public comment time.
                                                   the Downtown area where a majority of the
City Council Moves Branch                          Council has promoted intense new develop-            “Could we please have courtesy for every-
Library Demolitions                                ment and tall buildings.                          one?” said Worthington.
                                                                                                        “The motives are that the voters passed
Forward, Sets Hearings                                Under the wording of Worthington’s
                                                                                                     Measure FF based on the language of reno-
                                                   motion the relaxed zoning standards would
By Steven Finacom                                  “sunset” after the currently proposed branch      vation,” Epstein said. “Measure FF passed
Wed Apr 27 11:31:00 -0700 2011                     renovations or rebuilds are done. No major        by 750 votes and it may not have passed at
                                                   projects are currently proposed for the Cen-      all had you used the language of demolition.
   In an early morning extension of their                                                            The voters have the right to be informed
April 26 meeting the Berkeley Council              tral Library.
                                                                                                     about what their money is being used for
moved forward with controversial plans to             On the other two library items on the
                                                                                                     and what projects to support.”
demolish and rebuild the South and West            agenda, however, the Council majority ap-
                                                   parently stuck with the plan to proceed with         “In the same election, Measure LL failed;
Berkeley branch libraries.
                                                   demolition of the South and West branches         56% of the voters voted against Measure LL
   However, in somewhat of a surprise turn,                                                          which would have weakened our landmarks
at the suggestion of Councilmember Kriss           by setting public hearings on the Zoning
                                                   Adjustments Board and Landmarks Pres-             ordinance. These are precisely the voters
Worthington, the Council stripped at least                                                           that would have voted against Measure
one controversial element from the propos-         ervation Commission actions, rather than
                                                   remanding the agenda items back to the two        FF had it specified demolitions. And I do
als.                                                                                                 remain open to talking to you,” Epstein
   Some Council members also verbally                                                                concluded.
clashed with members of the audience who              Worthingtonmade a motion to hold new
                                                   public hearings on the two items to “wipe            Before the vote and this exchange, the
had waited for up to five hours for the item                                                         Council heard public testimony from several
to come up, with debate during the public          out any mistakes or any illegal things that
                                                   were done…and then the City can address           individuals who spoke to concerns about the
testimony period erupting between at least                                                           zoning amendment and the proposed branch
two Council members and public speakers.           this and follow all the procedures as scru-
                                                   pulously as humanly possible.” The motion         library demolitions. The Council limited
   Four of the Council members—Anderson,                                                             public comment on all three items under
                                                   failed for lack of a second.
consideration to three minutes, total, per      discussion on an issue that would later come         (Councilmember Worthington had previ-
audience member.                                before the Council.                               ously mentioned that the City Manager
   “It’s a late hour,” said Mayor Bates, ex-       Andersonwas “really yelling at me about        had found general fund money to pay for
plaining the testimony restrictions.            the people who filed the lawsuit and he just      demolishing the two library buildings. This
   “You were the one who scheduled it late,”    went on and on and I am not part of the           would allow the City to avoid spending
someone in the audience said.                   lawsuit. He was bullying me…”                     Measure FF funds on the actual demolition,
                                                   “Bullying!” Anderson said from the dais.       but the bond monies would still be applied
   It was about midnight when the Council
                                                                                                  to constructing new buildings on the cleared
decided to take the public testimony on            “Yeah, when you don’t let me get a word
three agenda items together: the zoning         in edgewise, that’s what it’s called,” Kos-
amendment that would change the zoning          sowsky retorted. “You’re not supposed to be          “And I remember when we lined up here
for Berkeley’s five public library sites to     interrupting me” during public testimony,         last June for things that were being cut, Wil-
enable development there to proceed with        she added.                                        lard Pool, and I am just very afraid that if a
a use permit, not variances; the decision                                                         million dollars, or whatever it takes to de-
                                                   Anderson, Kossowsky said, “would not
of the Zoning Adjustments Board to grant                                                          molition the south and the west branch, will
                                                stop” when he called her to complain about
use permits for the South and West branch                                                         come out of these restricted funds and we’re
                                                the lawsuit.
demolitions and rebuilds; the decisions of                                                        all concerned for the kids of the city and the
                                                   “I have trusted Max and have been proud        programs that wouldn’t be there, and so we
the Landmarks Preservation Commission           to have him as my representative, but this
not to suspend the demolition permit for the                                                      really need to be wise in our use of funds.”
                                                was uncalled for…and not provoked. And
West Branch (a City of Berkeley Structure                                                            “And certainly the refurbishing of both
                                                it’s been clear that you have already made
of Merit) or initiate the South Branch (a                                                         the south and the west branch is an option,
                                                up your mind from the library projects be-
landmark eligible historic structure) for                                                         and you doesn’t have to be concerned with
                                                cause of this phone call.”
landmark consideration.                                                                           the money from the $26 million (Measure
                                                   “I hope Max and the other people who           FF money). I’m sure there’s plenty of funds
   “The correct remedy is actually to remand    show poor behavior will tell the truth about
these issues back to the original bodies,”                                                        there to do what needs to be done to have
                                                what is really happening regarding the li-        fine libraries for the children, and us adults,
said Judith Epstein, who was the first          braries…Please, I am asking that all the lies
speaker. “I’ll explain why.”                                                                      too, who love to read in the future.”
                                                and bullying from those who disagree with
   “The city attorney has consistently                                                               “Under the Zoning Adjustments Board de-
                                                the lawsuit stop immediately.”
enforced a policy requiring the recusal of                                                        cision, the treatment of the library branches
                                                   “Thank you, next please,” said Mayor           will be separate but not equal,” with the
any member of a quasi-judicial body who         Bates.
expresses an opinion about a land use matter                                                      South and West branches suffering, said
                                                   Christopher Lien, from the Le Conte            Gene Bernardi, the next speaker. Her father
before voting on it. Carole Kennerly was re-
                                                neighborhood (one neighborhood east of the        was an architect with the famed Bay Area
quired to recuse herself from her temporary
                                                South Branch library) came to the podium to       firm of Wurster, Bernardi, and Emmons.
appointment to LPC [Landmarks Preserva-
                                                describe a neighborhood meeting at which             She praised the Todd Jersey alternative
tion Commission] because on March 2nd
                                                “everyone who showed up spoke about the           plans submitted by Concerned Library
she sent a letter to the Planning Commission
                                                library issue.”                                   Users for renovating the historic portions
saying, and these are her words, ‘I strongly
support the demolition and renovation plans        “It’s something that really resonated in our   of the South and West branch libraries and
for the south and west branch libraries.’       neighborhood and is something that is creat-      constructing new additions, and criticized
These were exactly the issues she was to        ing a lot of interest and a lot of concern. Our   the overall character and “ticky tacky intru-
vote on.”                                       primary concern is that we feel that we were      sions” in the City’s design for an all-new
                                                lied to. The language on the library bond,        West Branch Library.
   “That letter was referred to the city man-
                                                Measure FF, makes it very clear that it is for       Peter Warfield, from the Library Users As-
ager by Councilmember Anderson in your
                                                renovation.”                                      sociation group, objected to the “greasing of
presence so you were all aware of it. You
were all aware of the very strong opinion          “The citizens in Le Conte, and other           the skids, essentially, for the demolition of
that she had expressed. The error to appoint    neighborhoods as well, expected that if they      two libraries…like some of the other speak-
Ms. Kennerly may have been unintentional        voted for this funding, this 26 million, that     ers, I suggest you send the decision of ZAB
but the process was tainted. Ms. Kennerly       those libraries would be preserved as much        and LPC back.”
was an active participant in the LPC ZAB        as possible and that you would be preserv-           (Disclosure: the author has written
decision and she made some of the mo-           ing and protecting those historic features.       extensively on the library issues, including
tions.”                                         Demolition of the south branch and the west       both news stories and opinion pieces, in the
                                                branch are clearly outside the scope of this      past year. He does not believe Measure FF
   (Kennerly was a one-meeting replacement
                                                bond measure, and so the bond funds should        allowed demolitions. He is not a member of
appointee to the Landmarks Preservation
                                                not be used for demolition.”                      Concerned Library Users.)
Commission at the April 14 meeting when
the LPC, in a marathon five-public hearing         “I remember when I lived on Julia Street”
joint session with the Zoning Adjustments       said the next speaker “and my son was ten
Board, acted on the Library demolition          years old, walking over to the south branch
proposals.)                                     library many times.”
   Lori Kossowsky spoke next. She told             “And I am concerned about the demolition
the council that that Max Anderson, her         funds and where they come from because we
councilmember, had called her in what           know the general fund is very constrained as
she described as an undisclosed ex-parte        we heard many times tonight.”
Berkeley Library Demo
Draws Dozens In Support
By Steven Finacom
Wed Apr 27 08:03:00 -0700 2011

                                                                             Steven Finacom
                                               Some leaders of the branch library demoli-
                                               tion / rebuild group gather for a photo after                               Steven Finacom
                                               the rally. They include from, left to right,    Former City current planning head Mark
                                               Diane Davenport from the Friends of the Li-     Rhoades signs the demolition / rebuild peti-
                                               brary, Elizabeth Watson and Linda Schacht       tion.
                             Steven Finacom    of the Berkeley Public Library Foundation,
Councilmembers Darryl Moore, Max Ander-        Board of Library Trustees member Winston           A modestly sized rally of about 60 to 70
son, and Laurie Capitelli stand behind rally   Burton, and Dave Snyder, executive director     individuals gathered at the steps of City Hall
emcee Dave Snyder.                             of the Foundation.                              on the evening of April 26, 2011 to express
                                                                                               support for the demolition and rebuilding of
                                                                                               the South and West branches of the Berkeley
                                                                                               Public Library.
                                                                                                  The future of the branches is at issue in
                                                                                               a lawsuit filed by Concerned Library Users
                                                                                               against the City of Berkeley, seeking to
                                                                                               block the demolition of the branches and
                                                                                               promoting a partial renovation / partial new
                                                                                               construction approach instead.
                                                                                                  A key issue in the lawsuit is whether the
                                                                                               Library can legally spend money from the
                             Steven Finacom                                                    2008 library bond, Measure FF, on demoli-
The crowd during the rally in front of the                                                     tion and rebuilding of the South and West
April 26 City Council meeting.                                               Steven Finacom    branches. The bond measure referred to
                                               Rally attendees included, left to right, City   renovation, expansion, accessibility and
                                               Economic Development staffer and South          seismic improvements at the branches, but
                                               Berkeley library neighbor Dave Fogerty,         did not propose or identify demolition as
                                               new Library Trustee Jim Novosel, and Chris      something the funds could be spent on.
                                               Adams from the Friends of the Library.             All the speakers at the rally, organized
                                                                                               by a new group calling itself New Libraries
                                                                                               Now, favored the demolition and complete
                                                                                               rebuilding of the two branches.
                                                                                                  New Libraries Now didn’t announce any
                                                                                               detailed information about its composition
                                                                                               at the rally, but it appears to have at its core
                                                                                               Berkeley Public Library Foundation leaders,
                           Steven Finacom                                                      two or three City Councilmembers, and sev-
Businessman Ben Bartlett spoke flanked by                                                      eral African-American community leaders.
Berkeley High School students.
                                                                                                  An overlapping group gathered privately
                                                                                               this past winter in what was promoted as
                                                                                               a “community meeting” about the lawsuit
                                                                                               that Foundation leader Linda Schacht later
                                                                                               described as a strategy meeting to plan a re-
                                                                                               sponse to the lawsuit. That strategy appeared
                                                                                               to be unfolding at this rally.
                                                                                                  Speakers included a Berkeley School
                                                                           Steven Finacom
                                                                                               Board member, a local minister, a Down-
                                               Two boys posed with a sign on the steps of
                                                                                               town businessman who has organized a peti-
                                               City Hall before the rally.
tion drive aimed at the lawsuit proponents,       majority of those attending were clearly          voices of the community as concerned
the president of the Berkeley Federation of       middle aged to elderly Caucasian men and          library users came to numerous meetings at
Teachers and three City Councilmembers.           women, including several I recognized from        each branch to review plans and proposals.”
   The speeches were thick with condem-           the Library Foundation, the Friends of the           “After two years the community said they
nation of the lawsuit, claims that it would       Library, and various public hearings on the       consistently wanted their libraries to be,
delay reconstruction of the branches,             Library issues.                                   guess what?” Burton said. “Beautiful, not
generalized statements about, and praise for,        There were several high-school age at-         cute, accessible, green, high tech, compre-
the good done by public libraries, calls to       tendees (some of whom spoke) and some             hensive…”
protect and educate Berkeley’s children, and      younger children; after posing for photo-            “You see now it’s three years later, the
a few religious allusions.                        graphs with signs, the latter spent much of       message hasn’t changed, it’s the same, the
   The Councilmembers who spoke—Linda             the rally playing on the adjacent lawn.           community knows what it wants, it knows
Maio, Max Anderson, and Laurie Capitelli—            African-American faces were more vis-          what it needs.”
pledging their support for demolition and         ible at the top of the steps and the speaker         “This opportunity may not come again,
rebuilding of the South and West branches.        rostrum, including Berkeley’s two African-        and it may not come again for fifty or even
A fourth Councilmember, Darryl Moore,             American Councilmembers , one of whom             a hundred years….Let’s not waste a minute!
stood with them and applauded, but did not        spoke later.                                      Let’s not waste a penny!” he concluded.
speak to the crowd.                                  “I welcome you all for New Libraries              “We wanted to take the opportunity to
   At six o’clock, the time publicized for the    Now!” said David Snyder, beginning the            have some of our City Council members
rally start, I counted about 30 people stand-     event, and restlessly patrolling the top of       make their comments,” said Snyder, “so
ing around at the base of the City Hall steps.    the steps like a game show host on stage.         please, Councilmember Susan Wengraf…”
Two boys poised for photographs with a sign       “Thank you!”                                      as he turned to Councilmember Linda Maio
calling for “New Healthy Branch Libraries”,          “We have a few individuals who would           who was standing next to him.
while a girl sat nearby on the steps.             like to make comments of their support for           “We’re in session right now so we came
   Dave Snyder, the paid Executive Director       why we should have new libraries at our           down to be with you”, said Maio, quickly
of the Berkeley Public Library Foundation,        West and South branches,” he said. “We            recovering from the mistaken introduc-
bustled around organizing speakers to stand       were excited here in Berkeley, when Mea-          tion. She stood in front of Councilmembers
on the steps.                                     sure FF was passed, we expected to see the        Max Anderson, Darryl Moore, and Laurie
   At about 6:10, the group—speakers and          community come together.”                         Capitelli, all of them holding signs that said
audience—had grown to close to 60. Protes-           He referred to “the 26 million dollars that    “New Libraries Now For South and West
tors from a demonstration against Berkeley’s      we as citizens have allocated for this project,   Berkeley.”
proposed “sit / lie” ordinance passed by up       and we look forward to seeing this project           “We’ve come down to thank you for join-
the steps, on their way into City Hall. Some      move forward on time.”                            ing us for new libraries for south and west”,
of the “sit / lie” protestors remained outside       Winston Burton, a member of the Board          she said. “There’s one word in Measure
on the City Hall steps, propping or holding       of Library Trustees, was the first speaker        FF that’s in contention, it’s called the word
their signs in view of the crowd.                 and began to rouse the crowd. “Just getting       ‘demolition’. Because of one word we may
   The largely white, matronly, and middle-       ready to rock! Are you with me? Fired up!         not have libraries for south and west for our
aged audience for the library rally looked        Fired up! Ready to go!” Burton urged. The         kids, for our families, for our seniors, and
on in some bemusement and confusion               audience cheered.                                 for our disabled. It’s simply not fair. It’s
as young homeless men and women, Cal                 The Library construction, Burton said          simply not right.”
students opposing the sit / lie ordinance, and    “had led to the first Project Labor Agree-           “We have to go ahead with what we’ve
a few grizzled veteran Berkeley activists         ment” in Berkeley “to promote local dollars       got, and what we’ve got is the taxpayers,
filtered through the library rally and into the   and local business.” “Let’s keep the Berke-       the taxpayers of Berkeley say Yes! we want
building.                                         ley voter’s money and local dollars which         good quality libraries for all of Berkeley…
   During and at the end of the library rally     support Measure FF in Berkeley! Keep the          And so with your help we have to get the
the group of those there to support the rally     Berkeley money in Berkeley! Are you with          word out because once taxpayers hear it,
numbered about 60 spectators at the base          me?”                                              let me tell you, once they hear it, they are
of the City Hall steps and another dozen or          “Yeah!” the crowd cheered.                     angry. They’re angry because we’re stalled.
more speakers and those standing with them           Burton recalled that he was one of three       And we’re stalled because of a few people
on the steps.                                     campaign chairs for Measure FF in 2008.           who nitpick.”
   I counted several times and kept coming           “What we consistently heard back from             “Your presence here means that you have
up with about 60-70 people, total, who were       the community was what they wanted in             reinforced the commitment that this city
clearly there for the library demolition /        their libraries, and it was consistent. They      expressed on election day in 2008”, Coun-
rebuild cause.                                    wanted their libraries to be beautiful—not        cilmember Max Anderson said. “We want
   I also looked at the apparent composition      cute” (derisive laughter came from the            good, quality, modern libraries in all parts of
of the crowd. Among the 60-70, there were         crowd). “They wanted accessible. They             our city. We want a fair and equal distribu-
about 15-20 African-American and Hispanic         wanted them to be green, high-tech, compre-       tion of resources in the city.”
faces. Of course I didn’t have a chance to        hensive…and they also wanted a community             “We want our families and our children to
ask everyone there the ethnicity with which       room that we can hopefully use at night,          have access to the materials and the edu-
they identified, but as you can see from the      hopefully.”                                       cation and the books they need to have a
crowd photo accompanying this article, the           “Over the next two years I heard the           successful life…no matter whether you live

in North Berkeley, whether you live in the       community of Berkeley. I want you to help           lay in. Do what we have to do, because our
Claremont area, or in South or West Berke-       me, and whenever I say ‘Libraries’, I want          children need these libraries today.”
ley.”                                            you to shout out, ‘We want our libraries               “I’m upset because people are messing
   “Yay! Yay!” a woman screamed from the         now!’.”                                             with my children,” Peeples continued. “We
crowd, followed by applause.                        The small crowd complied a bit too en-           need to move forward and do what we have
   Anderson then offered an analogy about        thusiastically, sometimes drowning out her          to do. We cannot be caught in a ‘trick bag’,
his experience with his home kitchen             remarks after each mention of ‘library’.”           I hope you hear what I’m saying. It’s just
remodel. He said “we had no plans to tear           She talked about her own children and            another trick bag that has been played in
down the wall but what we found during the       the children she teaches going to the library.      Berkeley for some many years.”
course of our process compelled us if we         “We take children to promote their reading.            “We hope that the people who are trying
were to have a decent kitchen.”                  Families go to the library.”                        to stop, who have a lawsuit against the
   “Now if any of you find dry rot and bad          “We need libraries in west and south             process, will reconsider what they are doing
things in the walls of your house and your       Berkeley.” “Taxpayers voted for new librar-         and think about the babies. The babies don’t
plan is revitalizing your kitchen, you’re not    ies. We voted this in 2008 and now a small          have anything to deal with, they need the
going to walk away from it because you           group of people are stopping the rebuilding         libraries to do what they need to do.”
discovered dry rot, you’re going to fix it to    of our libraries,” she said.                           “It breaks my heart because teachers know
the highest standard you can.”                      “Who will listen to them? Who will listen        that libraries are critical to the education of
   “What people have to decide is, what side     to them? NOBODY!”                                   our children”, said Cathy Campbell, presi-
are you going to be on? Are you going to            “They just want attention!” yelled a             dent of the Berkeley Federation of Teachers.
stand in the library door, or are you going      woman from the crowd.                               She said her organization had supported the
to try to facilitate the availability of these                                                       campaign for the library bonds.
                                                    “It is simply unfair, it’s not right, and it’s
resources to all of our community?” Ander-       simply a waste of time and money to stall              “Every part of our town deserves high
son concluded. “You’ve done your job, and        the renovation of the West and South Berke-         quality, modernized, sufficient, even more
we’re going to go in there and do ours.”         ley libraries,” Leyva-Cutler continued.             than sufficient, libraries.” “We have to have
   Councilmember Laurie Capitelli came                                                               libraries that are excellent in all parts of our
                                                    “You do what you have to do to get back
forward next, clutching a yellow “New                                                                town.”
                                                 into your house, and we want to get back
Libraries Now” sign. “I just want to say,        into our libraries.”                                   “We need to grow this movement…when
number one, the voters said overwhelmingly                                                           do we want our libraries?”
                                                    “Children and the community deserve
‘spend the money, rebuild the libraries, have                                                           “Now!” the crowd chorused.
                                                 to have the beautiful and safe and inviting
modern libraries for everyone’,” he said.                                                               Snyder took back the microphone for a
                                                 libraries that we were promised. Libraries
   “Number two, we’ve spent, all of you,         are a lifeline for many and we can’t be quiet       moment and gave a plug for a Facebook
many of you, hundreds of other people,           on this….Please sign the petition that is           page promoting the demolition / rebuilding.
hundreds if not thousands of hours plan-         circulating and those naysayers who would           “Look for New Libraries Now, like it, pass it
ning these four libraries. NO ONE stepped        rather take the City to court and pay lawyers       along, get the communication going…”
forward at any of the meetings I went to         than build our libraries, enough is enough..           He then introduced Ben Bartlett, owner
and said, Stop. NO ONE. It was only after        Stop wasting valuable time and build our            of a downtown Berkeley business and the
a very small minority didn’t get their way       libraries.”                                         son of Dale Bartlett(once the aide to former
or perceived of some way to stop this                                                                Councilmember Maudelle Shirek) who was
                                                    Reverend M. Peeples was then introduced.
project that they’ve moved forward with                                                              in the crowd. “I’d like to take a moment to
                                                 “When I think about what has happened to
obstructionist activities. It’s time to move                                                         remind us what’s truly at stake here” Bartlett
                                                 us here in Berkeley it really disturbs me…
forward, it’s time we as a community said,                                                           said, describing beautiful, ideal, library
                                                 What I’m saying now is I don’t like what I
the overwhelming majority of people have                                                             buildings. He was flanked by five teenagers.
                                                 hear, what I see. I want the City Council to
said, move ahead and build these libraries.
                                                 move forward with rebuilding our libraries.”           “The future I’m talking about here clearly
Thank you!”
                                                    “We encouraged our people in our com-            is not an imaginary future. It’s real. You
   “That you Councilmember, we appreciate                                                            chose it. You planned it and you funded it.
                                                 munity to vote for the bonds for the libraries
your support”, Snyder said, calling on the                                                           And now, due to some misguided lawsuit,
                                                 and for people to step in, and stop, and try
next speaker, Beatriz Leyva-Cutler.                                                                  you’re defending it.”
                                                 to keep our kids from learning, it is not fair.
   The four Councilmembers disappeared           The kids in south and west Berkeley need               “Who knows better how to spend your
into the building, where they rejoined the       libraries more than people in other parts of        money than you do? Nobody.” “And who
Council session, which was scheduled to          our city.”                                          knows how to raise your family better than
vote on EIR certification, zoning revisions,                                                         you do? Nobody.”
                                                    “I would hope that you would move
and use permits for the South and West
                                                 forward, Council, in terms of doing what the           “You did the right thing for this commu-
branch demolition and rebuild projects.
                                                 people have said to do, and move forward            nity…you passed Measure FF. You are in
   “We want our libraries now!” Leyva-Cut-       and get these libraries rebuilt.”                   control,” Bartlett said.
ler called, introducing herself as president
                                                    “Those are the ones that are held up                “So right here, we’ve got some young
of the School Board. “Today I come here to
                                                 because of the lawsuit. Now, we don’t need          people, who when they learned of this AT-
this rally to share my opinion as a private
                                                 any one speaking any more because the               TACK on their future, they did something
citizen, a homeowner and a childcare direc-
                                                 people have already spoken.”                        about it. They put together a petition by their
tor of Berkeley. Because I simply can’t be
                                                    “We have to do it. If we need to march           own hand…Hundreds, literally hundreds, of
quiet about something so important to our
                                                 again, let’s march. If we need to lay in, let’s     their own friends signed it.”
   “So please, say hi to my child soldiers,”     it approved the EIR and use permits for          when “I just happened to accidentally attend
handing the microphone to the teenagers          the South and West Berkeley demolition /         a Planning Commission meeting.” “They
standing behind him.                             rebuild projects, handed him a clipboard.        were yelling to stop the Libraries. I said this
   “I’m really glad to see that everybody is        I asked Panzer if he knew who had origi-      is ridiculous.”
behind us”, said a boy named Jonah.              nated an anonymous website called “New              “I’ve taken the lead in organizing for
   “Libraries are wonderful things in this       Libraries Now”, which contains a drawing         equity in this community”, he said.
community, and we as a community need to         of the proposed new South Berkeley Library,         I asked him if he thought the lawsuit was
uphold and support them to the best of our       a graphic apparently taken from the Berke-       racist? “There’s always the question of in-
ability”, said Noah Hardy.                       ley Public Library website, which uses the       tent verses effect”, he said. “I can’t speak on
   “Reading is Fundamental”, emphasized a        same drawing on its “South Branch / Tool         the intent but the result is clear.” He said the
woman described as Bartlett’s relative, who      Lending Library Project and Plans.”              lawsuit would “maintain a Jim Crow-style
was standing with the Berkeley High School          Panzer said he didn’t know. I asked Dave      status quo” in Berkeley.
students.                                        Snyder from the Library Foundation the              I asked School Board member Karen
   “Indeed”, said Bartlett, taking the micro-    same thing. “I don’t know”.                      Hemphill, who was in the crowd, the same
phone back. “The kids said it, let’s not let        The website, on, contains a        question.
them down here.”                                 gmail address and a link to “Follow New             “I don’t think their intent is racist. But that
   “As adults we have a duty to create a suc-    Libraries Now on Facebook” and a call to         doesn’t mean that the result won’t be”, she
cessful society for the next generation…we       attend the evening rally.                        said. The lawsuit, she said, “Will differen-
are Berkeley.”                                      The website links to the Berkeley Public      tially impact South and West Berkeley, the
   “Where would Berkeley be without our          Library webpage, contains an essay “Litera-      community with the least access to technol-
libraries?!” a woman called plaintively from     cy Changes Lives” attributed to the “Berke-      ogy and resources.”
the crowd.                                       ley Reads” program, presents a brochure             “I think any delay (in rebuilding the
                                                 produced by the Berkeley Public Library          branches) will be unfortunate.”
   “Exactly!” said Bartlett, reciting a litany
                                                 Foundation, and a “Frequently Asked Ques-           Beatrice Leyva-Cutler told me before the
of Berkeley firsts from free speech to South
                                                 tions” page, which presents text and two         rally, “We’d like to see all our libraries built.
African divestment, disabled rights, and sci-
                                                 links to the Berkeley Public Library website.    It’s important for Berkeley.” I asked her
entific discoveries. “To do what we do best,
which is to make change, we need a library.”        The webpage does not identify who cre-        if she felt demolition of the two branches
                                                 ated or maintains it and there’s no “who         was the right approach. “It makes common
   “Now, please, please, don’t be too frus-
                                                 we are” or “contact us” link, other than the     sense. They are buildings that have to be re-
trated with the people who have brought this
                                                 gmail address.                                   built. They are beyond renovation”, she said.
lawsuit against our children because I really
believe that ‘they know not what they do’.          Snyder did tell me that the separate Fa-         (Disclosure: the author has written
But you do”, Bartlett concluded. “You know       cebook page he had been promoting at the         extensively on the library issues, including
what you do. And because you know, you           rally was “connected to Linda, and Max, and      both news stories and opinion pieces, in the
have a duty to teach what you know to those      Councilmember Moore, and the Reverend            past year. He does not believe Measure FF
who do not know.”                                and all the folks who have been meeting to       allowed demolitions. He is not a member of
                                                 pull this together.”                             Concerned Library Users.)
   “Let the City Council and the litigants
know that Berkeley needs world class librar-        It wasn’t clear whether he meant Linda
ies,” Bartlett said.                             Maio, the Councilmember, or Linda                First Protest Against Sitting
                                                 Schacht, the Berkeley Public Library Foun-
   “We’re circulating around a petition,”
                                                 dation fundraiser who had previously been
                                                                                                  Prohibition Proposal
David Snyder said. “Please, if you can take
                                                 in the forefront of criticism of the library     Pronounced a Success by
an opportunity to sign the petition, put your
e-mail now, we’ll continue to see “New
                                                 lawsuit. Schacht was at the rally but stayed     Organizers
                                                 in the crowd and didn’t speak.
Libraries Now” communicates with you.”                                                            By Ted Friedman
                                                    The petition being circulated read simply,
   “We need New Libraries Now!” he ended.                                                         Wed Apr 27 14:01:00 -0700 2011
                                                 “NEW LIBRARIES NOW PETITION IN
   Some from the rally went into City Hall,      FAVOR OF DEMOLISHING AND RE-
while others scattered. A few late arrivals      BUILDING THE WEST AND SOUTH
chatted with those leaving, and the petition     BRANCHES OF THE LIBRARY.” It asked
circulated in the crowd. Director of Library     for Name, Email, and asked “Use Your
Services Donna Corbeil came through the          Name?”
remaining individuals and headed up the
                                                    Before and after the rally I had the oppor-
steps towards the Council meeting.
                                                 tunity to talk to a few others in the crowd.
   I tried to talk to Jim Novosel, nominated
                                                    “I’m really pleased at the community at-
as a new member of the Board of Library
                                                 tendance and outpouring”, Elizabeth Watson
Trustees, but he turned to speak to oth-
                                                 from the Berkeley Public Library Founda-
ers. I then approached former City head of
                                                 tion told me after the rally. “It really shows
Current Planning, Mark Rhoades, now a
                                                 we need to do libraries in south and west
for-profit Berkeley developer.
   “Where’s the petition?” Rhoades was                                                            Attorney Osha Neumann, sitting on the side-
                                                    Bartlett told me he had decided to pro-
asking. Eric Panzer, who was sitting on                                                           walk in front of the former Cody’s bookstore,
                                                 mote the library demolition / rebuild cause
the city’s Zoning Adjustment Board when
explains what’s wrong with the proposed                                                             Ordinance drafters are waiting to monitor
ordinance as he makes protest signs.                                                             legal challenges to San Francisco’s recently
                                                                                                 passed sit-lie ordinance before they pull
                                                                                                 the trigger, according to Roland Peterson,
                                                                                                 spokesman for Telegraph Avenue business-
                                                                                                 men, who, he intimates, are mad as hell and
                                                                                                 aren’t going to take allegedly blocked door-
                                                                                                 ways and other perceived threats to business
                                                                                                 on the Ave.
                                                                                                    “We also want to be less restrictive with
                                                                                                 our Berkeley ordinance,” said Peterson. “For
                                                                                                 instance our ordinance won’t—like S.F.’s—
                                                                                                 apply citywide,” he said, “and will focus on
                                                                                                 the most egregious violations, such as block-
                                                                                                 ing business doorways.”
                                                                                                    Councilmember Kriss Worthington, who
                                                                                                 represents the Telegraph Avenue area, says
                                                                                                 that the main push is not coming from
                                                                                                 merchants, that some commercial property
                                                                                                 owners in Berkeley “just want to maximize
                          By Steven Finacom
                                                                                                 their high rents.”
The sit-down protest attracted a variety of
demonstrators.                                 Students joined the demonstration.                   But if the property owners would lower
                                                                                                 their rents to market levels, he says, “we
                                                                                                 could rent all the vacant storefronts.”
                                                  More than 60 sitters, lie-ers, crawlers,
                                               and a clown engaged in a little street theater       He noted that similar efforts to get people
                                               Tuesday at the old Cody’s building on Tele-       off the street were made by local business
                                               graph Avenue, demonstrating what might            groups in good economic times. “They tried
                                               happen if a new measure prohibiting sitting       to do it when the economy was booming,
                                               or lying on public sidewalks were to be           and now they’re trying to do it when the
                                               adopted by the Berkeley City Council.             economy is down.”
                                                  Afterwards, demonstrators moved on to             “Why is it that the sales are down worst
                                               speak in the public comment period of the         in the areas with the fewest homeless people
                                               Berkeley City Council meeting, picking up         on the street? It’s clearly the recession, ” he
                                               more supporters along the route. They were        believes.
                                               joined by a large group of Cal students,             According to Berkeley homeless activist
                                               workers at the Suitcase Clinic—who weren’t        and renowned muralist Osha Neumann, an
                                               getting course credit for their efforts. The      attorney at East-Bay Community Law Cen-
                                               clinic provides medical treatment for home-       ter, some Berkeley police “think sit-lie has
                                               less and other underserved clients.               already passed.” He pointed out a protester
                                                  At the city council meeting, five names        who readily displayed his ticket for alleged-
                                               were drawn at random to make public com-          ly trespassing in a Cody building doorway.
                                               ments before the meeting started about items         As Neumann lay prone during the demo,
                                               not on the council’s agenda for the night.        blocking the walk at Haste and Telegraph,
                                               Suitcase Clinic workers, who had become a         two Berkeley police officers watched from
                            By Ted Friedman    sizeable percentage of the 100 or so protest-     across the street on Haste. The police left
This Suitcase Clinic volunteer spoke to the    ers who occupied most of the seats in the         without doing anything more than eye-
Berkeley City Council during its public com-   council chamber, made impassioned state-          balling the civil disobedience event and kept
ment period.                                   ments defending the rights of their clients       citations to themselves.
                                               to sit down when they needed to, even on             Neumann said that he hoped the action
                                               public sidewalks.                                 is going to be the start of an awakening in
                                                  According to one of the protest organiz-       Berkeley…so we can move on from the
                                               ers, Gina Sasso, the goal of the action was       fight to come together.”
                                               to influence three city council members who          “This is absolutely not the way,” he said.
                                               protesters believe might change their yea         “We already have an ordinance against lying
                                               votes to nays as the idea of a sit/lie prohibi-   on the sidewalk during the day.”
                                               tion moves closer to adoption at City Hall.          He noted that laws of this sort have “hid-
                                                  Funny thing is, if you believe a quip made     den consequences”, and “don’t help the
                                               by Mayor Tom Bates during the comment             businesses.”
                                               period—there is no sit-lie ordinance pro-            “The City’s own studies show that the
                                               posed. But others claim one is in the works.      areas that have the most people on the street

had the least decline in revenue” recently,                                                         and quality of a pre-school experience for
he said. Business areas in Berkeley with                                                            students of color. However by the end of
the fewest homeless have actually seen the                                                          the Year the recession was on everyone’s
biggest drops in sales and City revenue,                                                            mind and suddenly the 2020 vision com-
because of the recession, according to the                                                          mitments seemed irrelevant to the decisions
city’s Office of Economic Development.                                                              being made. By 2010 BUSD had handled
   Neumann sees the demonstration as repre-                                                         a round of state and federal budget cuts at
sentative of Berkeley’s “progressive values,                                                        the Preschool level by reducing many of the
the outgrowth of an earlier culture.”                                                               extended care classrooms to 3 and 6.5 hour
   He remembers that Berkeley’s current tra-                                                        programs. The key difference between the
dition of progressivism and activism “grew                                                          former and both of the later is that the ex-
out of a period when people were sitting on                                                         tended day programs cater almost exclusive-
the sidewalks all the time…this political cul-                                                      ly to children of color where as the 3 and 6
                                                    My Name is Pablo Paredes and I am a             hour programs are where many of the white
ture had its finest moment in the FSM when
                                                 parent of a child in one of the last four re-      parents are concentrated meaning BUSD,
people sat down in front of a police car.”
                                                 maining extended day programs in BUSD’s            now a year after planning the 2020 vision, is
   He believes “Berkeley could set an ex-        Pre-K system (attached is a photo where my         considering decisive steps that increase the
ample here of not going with the flow, not       son interacts with his exclusively students        Achievement Gap.
scraping the bottom of our moral barrel.”        of color classroom). I am also the Chair              Now that BUSD is down to only 4
   The city could “talk about the real prob-     of the School Governance Council for the           extended day Pre-K classrooms serving 96
lems in our public spaces and deal with          three Berkeley Preschools. I was shocked to        families from over 8 or more classrooms and
them without going for the police state,” he     learn that in order to address the 15 % state      at one point serving over 300 families with
suggested.                                       mandated budget cuts and 10% reduction             extended care - the plan being looked at is to
   Later in the evening, on the sidewalk in      in per pupil reimbursement the strategy            put a nail in the coffin of the 2020 Vision by
front of Old City Hall as the protesters left    that staff will submit for approval by the         chopping all four of the remaining extended
the council meeting, Neumann, Sasso and          BUSD Board next [today], Wednesday, is             care pre-k classrooms. In effect, the entire
other organizers agreed that the first outing    to cut the last remaining four classrooms          15% budget cut at the preschool level would
of the loose coalition that has come together    that offer extended care for Pre-schools in        be shouldered by classrooms that serve pre-
to try to head off yet another attempt at        Berkeley. Maybe even the last of their kind        dominantly children of color. To give you a
enacting a sitting ban in Berkeley had been a    in the state. This is a major issue for families   sense of how clear the class lines of this cut
definite success.                                of color in Berkeley. A quick site visit at        are, look no further than the very write up
   Becky O’Malley and Steven Finacom             Hopkins, King or Franklin CDC to the 9.5           for the BUSD meeting in the Board packet
contributed to this article.                     hour classrooms will reveal classrooms that        from staff in which they admit that after
                                                 almost exclusively serve working poor fami-        this cut they will struggle to find Head Start
                                                 lies of color and these are the classrooms on      program eligible families so they are cutting
  BUSD To Consider Dump-                         the chopping block.                                their ties with Head Start as well. (write up
ing All Pre-K Extended Day                          2008 began for Berkeley with a wake             is attached here and available at the BUSD
                                                 up call about racial inequity in our schools
Programs--                                       learning that Berkeley Unified boasted
                                                                                                    website as well)
                                                                                                       Why is this relevant to the Achievement
Goodbye 2020 Vision to Close                     the highest racial achievement gap in the
                                                 state and that at Berkeley High there was
                                                                                                    Gap? Well beyond the fact that children of
Achievement Gap! (Partisan                       one Black student enrolled in AP courses
                                                                                                    color will shoulder the entire budget cut we
                                                                                                    have to be clear about the importance of
Position)                                        (despite a 3000 plus student body). A Black        pre-school toward impacting the achieve-
                                                 Youth Conference at Berkeley high was              ment gap. According to Jacqueline Jones of
By Pablo Paredes                                 soon held at which District folks made 3
Tue Apr 26 09:40:00 -0700 2011                                                                      the U.S. Department of Education’s early
                                                 promises the first and most important was          learning office every $1 dollar spent on early
                                                 to address the achievement gap by focus-           childhood ed is worth seven because chil-
                                                 ing resources on Kindergarden readiness in         dren who attend prekindergarten are more
                                                 other words investing in Pre-K programs            likely to not need remedial education, to
                                                 especially those who serve disproportion-          graduate from high school, to go to college
                                                 ately students of color such as the 9.5 hour       and to have higher-paying jobs that produce
                                                 classrooms aka extended hours.                     more taxes.
                                                    The response to a lot of bad media and the         We have already seen how Berkeley is
                                                 vehicle to fulfill promises like those made        failing black students with the dismal enroll-
                                                 to black Berkeley High Youth was the 2020          ment of black students in AP courses at
                                                 Vision which was supposed to look to erase         Berkeley High but the situation for Latin@
                                                 the achievement Gap by 2020. One of its            families and Early Childhood education is
                                                 three planning lenses was an early childhood       uniquely disturbing due to language issues.
                                                 development lens. One of its four task forces
                                                                                                       To quote Bruce Fuller a professor of Edu-
                                                 were specifically supposed to address 0-5
                                                                                                    cation and Public Policy @ UC Berkeley
                                                 year old factors the primary area of focus
                                                                                                    and the author of a study on Latino children
                                                 for this group was strengthening access to
and Pre-school, “We know that quality             ing to park sources familiar with the park’s      tame the park? Nope; he said he had simply
preschool lifts the early literacy and social     legendary water drainage problems.                communed with the universe that morning
skills of Latino children, especially those          The day was somewhat saved when                and was relaying a message from “the great
from Spanish-speaking homes. So, as fewer         weather changed its mind. Easter doesn’t do       unknown.”
Latino kids benefit from preschool, they          change. The fair’s organizer, an avenue head         Sound like peace?
will experience less success as they move         shop owner, joked that he’d emailed the Eas-         Free food in the park was courtesy of
through school.”                                  ter bunny requesting weather change. The          Food Not Bombs, but Zachary Running
   This Wednesday the Board will consider         bunny came through.                               Wolf Brown, 47, “dropped a bomb,”—his
an approach to the state mandated budget             Nevertheless, the south side event was         words— of his own while introducing the
cuts that will exacerbate the achievement         not as well attended as popular past street       park’s first performer, Phoenix, a member,
gap. No other options are being explored.         fairs, according to some street vendors on        along with Running Wolf, in the Blackfeet
The City of Berkeley committed to work            Telegraph.                                        tribe whom Brown—in a humor aside—
with BUSD to implement 2020 but they                 Easter may have lowered attendance,            noted was a “pretty Indian,” unlike Brown.
are not being tapped to save the PRE-K            according to vendors, who said the scary             Then Running Wolf dropped his bomb.
classrooms that do the most to impact the         morning weather was also a factor. They           The tree sitting protest against the university
achievement gap. Programs like BPEF               questioned the decision to compete with           would resume when “the students leave” for
are not being tapped. Creative ways to use        Easter when a lot of parents are pre-occu-        summer break, according to Running Wolf.
BSEP money are not being explored. Before         pied fooling with eggs.                              Bombs are used in wars.
taking a way a key lifeline to our lowest
                                                     Another vendor questioned the wisdom of           Wolf, a former mayoral protest candidate
income Berkeley families and feeding the
                                                  scheduling two events—Park versus Teley—          who is running again, honored an absent
monster known as the “achievement Gap”
                                                  for the same weekend.                             Matt Dodt, the previous tree-sitter. Dodt, 53,
we should leave no stone unturned but cur-
rently we are on route to cutting this lifeline      Yet another theory, from a security officer:   could not attend the park event because he is
without turning a single stone.                   competing fairs in the city. According to the     observing a three year stay-away-from-the-
                                                  San Francisco Chronicle, two major fairs          university order which he intends to chal-
   I am writing in hopes you may cover
                                                  drew thousands to the city Sunday.                lenge July 15 when he faces misdemeanor
this story which is going unnoticed. I am
                                                     Berkeley’s Spring street fair on Telegraph,    charges related to the tree-sit.
organizing with parents to have a presence
at the Board Meeting next Wednesday, also         in its third year, was organized by Al Geyer,        After three months in a tree in the park,
meeting with city council folks to seek city      66, owner of Annapurna, an avenue head            Dodt was hauled from his perch by a U.C.
support, also with union members to see if        shop founded in 1969—the same year as             crane after poking a counter protester in
there are compromises that can be made to         the People’s Park riots and the impetus for       the hand with a “campers” tool. Counter-
keep serving these children, and other pos-       Sunday’s People’s Park celebration.               protesters claimed to represent the opinion
sible stake holders.                                 Geyer acknowledged that this year’s av-        in the park that the tree-sit was counter-
                                                  enue fair had been reined in if not rained on.    productive to the park.
   Feel free to call me @ 510-967-1357.
                                                     A Teley streetfair last spring drew as many       Easter Sunday, the Easter Bunny saving
                                                  as 4,000 and attracted mainstream media,          the day, an aerialist playing with fire, and a
Peace-War Melodrama                               according to Geyer. This year it will have        dancing Indian bearing a message of peace
                                                                                                    to People’s Park. Great vibes, top-flight Indy
Debuts in Berkeley’s People’s                     to settle for low attendance and the Planet,
                                                                                                    bands, and sun, if not son. And oh yes, a war
                                                  according to no one in particular.
Park 42nd Anniversary                                An enthusiastic, if not overflowing, park      cry from Running Wolf.
Entertainment; Easter and                         crowd of more than 100 taking in the sun,            Berkeleyans and guests doing what Berke-
Weather Attack Teley Street                       free food, and each other stayed on until         ley does best—war and peace melodramas.
Fest                                              near dusk for some kick-ass Indy bands. Av-          Ted Friedman reports for the Planet from
                                                  enue fair-goers were wowed by great bands,        the Southside.
By Ted Friedman                                   the back-by-demand bucking bull, and an
Tue Apr 26 11:46:00 -0700 2011                    aerialist playing with fire.
                                                     Park festivities were kicked off by Gilbert
                                                                                                     Local Protesters Pay Big
  Easter Sunday and bad morning weather
                                                  Blacksmith, of the Lacota tribe in full Indian    Bucks to Disrupt Obama’s
threatened to attack this year’s 42nd an-
niversary of the battle for People’s Park in      dress who performed a high spirited Indian        Fund-raiser
                                                  dance—accompanied by Indian chants and            By Gar Smith / Environmentalists Against
1969 and take out Teley’s “Last Weekends
                                                  drumming.                                         War
Festival” too.
                                                     As his set was ending, he invited park         Tue Apr 26 11:49:00 -0700 2011
  If the cold 15mph wind and sometimes
                                                  early birds to join him in a circle dance.
hard rain had continued into the afternoon,                                                            On April 21, 2011, a group called the
People’s Park would have been slogged and            Before he left, he addressed the crowd         Fresh Juice Party political action staged an
sound amplifiers driving the Telegraph Ave.       with a plea for peace urging everyone to          “interrupt/interaction/performance art hap-
fest would have been blown by rain, accord-       be good citizens and follow the laws of the       pening” during a Presidential fund-raising
ing to the event’s organizer.                     land. “Our planet is running out of time,” he     dinner in San Francisco. A table of 10 people
                                                  said. Afterwards, he made it clear that each      attending the $5,000-a-ticket fund-raiser
  The People’s Park amps and onstage
                                                  of us is “running out of time.”                   surprised the other attendees when they sud-
entertainment were tented. But park revelers
would have sunk in ‘quickmud,’ accord-               Had he been reading the lurid People’s         denly stood up and broke into a song in the
                                                  Park stories in the Planet and decided to         middle of the president’s remarks. Unlike
the Bush Era, no shoes were thrown and no         conversation, which was captured on a            quake expert outlining cutting edge research
one was wrestled to the ground and beaten         cellphone.                                       in the field.
during this Presidential Protest. President          Pres Obama: We’re a nation of laws, we          This year the Lawson Lecture takes place
Obama politely stopped his speech to listen,      don’t individually make our own decisions        on Wednesday, May 4, at 5:00 PM in the
the protesters were allowed to finish their       about how the laws operate.                      Banatano Auditorium in Sutardja Dai Hall
song, and no one was arrested. (But maybe            Pres speaking about Price: No no, he’s        on the UC Berkeley campus. It is free and
this is the kind of special treatment that        doing fine,he’s doing fine, he’s being heard     open to the public.
comes with spending $50,000 to sit at one of      -- he’s asking a question.                         The speaker is Dr. Mary Comerio of the
these fund-raising tables.)                                                                        Department of Architecture.
                                                     Back to Price: He [Manning] broke the
   The Fresh Juice disrupters hoped to call       law. Well --                                       Her topic is “Two Earthquakes in
attention to incarcerated whistleblower                                                            Christchurch, New Zealand; lessons for
                                                     Price: He was telling the truth.
Pvt. Manning. The polite protest took place                                                        California.”
on the same day Manning was transferred              Pres Obama: Well, what he did was he
                                                  dumped. Well, what he did was he dumped.           “Comerio visited Christchurch, New Zea-
to Leavenworth where he will remain in
                                                  No, it wasn’t the same thing. Ellsberg’s re-     land, after the September, 2010 (magnitude
solitary confinement, 23 hours a day while
                                                  lease wasn’t classified in the same way. So...   7.1) earthquake and after its surprisingly
awaiting trial for leaking -- among other
                                                  anyway. Alright.                                 damaging February 2011 Magnitude 6.3
things -- video evidence of US war crimes in
                                                     President Obama: so [...] people can          aftershock. She will talk about the tectonic
Iraq. Here are the lyrics to the protest ditty
                                                  have philosophical views about, eh, sort of...   setting of the two earthquakes and why the
that interrupted the president’s event.
                                                  [...] no,no, but look: I can’t do diplomacy on   damage from the smaller one holds impor-
   Song Lyrics:                                                                                    tant lessons for California.”
                                                  an open source. That’s not how [the] world
   Dear Mr. President, we honor you today,                                                           Comerio is also known for her trail-
                                                  works. And if you’re a -- if you’re in the
sir                                                                                                blazing 1998 study, published in book
                                                  military, and -- I have to abide by certain
   All of us have given you our tax dollars       classified information, and if I release stuff   form,Disaster Hits Home. In it she re-
   It takes a lot of Benjamins to run a cam-      that I’m not authorized to release, I’m break-   viewed the impacts of natural disasters on
paign                                             ing the law.                                     the housing stock, particularly the way in
   I paid my dues, where’s my change?                “Vbanti2,” the online commentator who         which Federal policy tends to aid homeown-
   We’ll vote for you in 2012, yes, that’s true   provided the transcription, also provided the    ers trying to rebuild after a widespread
                                                  following response to Obama’s logic: “Per-       disaster—flood, hurricane, earthquake,
   Look at the Republicans -- what else can
                                                  haps [Manning] did break the law. But does       wildfire—but does not do much to assist
we do?
                                                  that justify his being tortured? Does that       in the rebuilding of rental housing. That’s
   Even though we don’t know if we’ll retain                                                       an important consideration in a place like
our liberties                                     justify his being denied due process? And
                                                  how can you claim that Ellsberg’s whistle        Berkeley where a large portion of the hous-
   In what you seem content to call a “free                                                        ing stock is occupied by renters.
                                                  blowing was fundamentally different? What
society.”                                                                                            To see the lecture flyer, go here:
                                                  legal distinction are you making? Why not
   Yes, it’s true that Terry Jones is legally     produce a short video address to America’s
free                                              citizens, explaining this? Wouldn’t that be a    son_announcement.pdf
   To burn a people’s holy book in shameful       good way to address our reasonable con-            Information on the Lawson Lecture series
effigy                                            cerns that Manning’s whole case has been         overall is here:
   But at another location in this country        bungled?”                                
   Alone in a 6x12 cell sits Bradley                                                               lecture.html
   23 hours a day is night
                                                   May 4 Lawson Lecture To
   The 5th and 8th Amendments say this
kind of thing ain’t right                         Highlight Earthquake Issues                        AB 410(Equal Access to
   Nobel Peace Prize/ Whistle blowers             By Steven Finacom                                Public Information for the
   Guantanamo/ Quantico
                                                  Tue Apr 26 16:22:00 -0700 2011
                                                                                                   Blind) Passes the Assembly
   Juan Mendez/ Due Process                          The 105th anniversary of the 1906 San         Business and Professions
                                                  Francisco Earthquake on Monday, April 18,
   Crimson Tide/ Laurence Tribe
                                                  was commemorated by Mother Nature her-
   8th Amendment/ Cruel and Unusual                                                                From the Office of Assemblyman Sandre
                                                  self with a little bump of an offshore tremor
   5th Amendment/ Punishment before a trial       that afternoon. Another way to remember          Swanson
   Terry Jones/ Burnin’ that Quran                1906—and to prepare for the inevitable           Tue Apr 26 16:33:00 -0700 2011
   Promise of transparency/ Dennis Kucinich       major earthquakes in the future of the Bay         Today, the Equal Access to Public
   We paid our dues, where’s our change?          Area—is to attend the 2011 Lawson Lecture        Information for the Blind Act passed the
   We paid our dues, where’s our change?          sponsored by the Seismographic Laboratory        Assembly Business and Professions Com-
                                                  at the UC Berkeley campus.                       mittee with a unanimous vote. “Blind and
   Video: The President Debates the Issue
                                                     The annual event, established in 2003, is     visually impaired people have a right to the
                                                  named for UC geologist Andrew Lawson             same information that state agencies are
  After the disruption, the president paused      who suggested the name for the San Andreas       required to provide to the rest of the public,”
to debate the issue with several members          Fault. Each year the program presents a talk     explained author Assemblymember Sandré
of the audience. Here is a transcript of the      by a leading seismologist or other earth-        R. Swanson (D-Alameda). “AB 410 codifies
fundamental democratic principles of equal        have access to public information. This bill
access and public notice by requiring state       gives state agencies some practical guidance
agencies to provide regulations in a format       on how to make that happen.”
that is accessible to the blind and visually        AB 410 now moves to the Assembly
impaired.”                                        Committee on Appropriations.
   Current state law, the Administrative
Procedures Act, requires each state agency        Spring Party Brightens
to make proposed regulations available
to the public, giving them an opportunity
                                                  Willard Park at Easter
to participate in the process by providing        By Steven Finacom, Special to the Planet
input before a regulation goes into effect.       Tue Apr 26 11:09:00 -0700 2011
“This transparent process of regulation
review and development is central to public
participation in state government,” Swanson
explained. “Sadly, the blind and visually
impaired are unable to participate in this
process because the reading software they
use is not equipped to interpret the formatted
text state agencies are currently using,” said
   Assemblymember Swanson’s office
worked closely with the bill’s sponsor, the
California Council of the Blind, to develop
a regulation format that can be accurately
interpreted by reading software. The nar-
rative description required by AB 410 is a
straight-forward explanation of the regula-
tion, without any strikeouts, italicization, or
other stylized text that is unreadable by the
software used by the blind.
   Jeff Thom, Chairperson of Governmen-
tal Affairs with the California Council of
the Blind, emphasized how the narrative
description required by AB 410 will give
blind persons equal access to the govern-
mental process. “AB 410 will empower
persons who are blind or who have low vi-
sion to have the same ability as their sighted
counterparts to work with state agencies in
implementing the laws of California.”
   Unlike Swanson’s AB 1787 of last year,
which required state agencies to translate
every regulation into a narrative descrip-
tion format, AB 410’s requirements are only
triggered when a blind or visually impaired
person requests the narrative format. Frank
Welte, the Director of Advocacy and Gov-
ernmental Affairs for the California Council
of the Blind, worked closely with Swanson’s
staff to craft both versions of the bill and is
confident that the more measured approach
of AB 410 is a sensible and fair solution.
Welte testified to the Assembly Business
and Professions Committee today. “AB 410
takes a fiscally responsible approach to pro-
viding Californians who are blind or visually
impaired greater access to state regulatory
   Swanson concluded, “I am confident that
state agencies want to do the right thing. We
all want the blind and visually impaired to

                                         parents, and digital cameras flooded into         bunnies did rabbity things including nibbling
                                         Berkeley’s Willard Park on Saturday, April        on the lawn. At one point a little black and
                                         23, to participate in and record the City         white spotted bunny climbed on the back of
                                         of Berkeley’s annual “Egg Hunt Extrava-           a much bigger brindled rabbit.
                                         ganza”.                                             The brindle was not accommodating. The
                                            Carefully classified as a “Spring” (not        spotted one persisted. The brindle dashed
                                         Easter) celebration, the event was staffed        away, setting off a short bunny stampede
                                         by a busy and smiling contingent of City of       through the enclosure.
                                         Berkeley Parks and Recreation staff.                Near the pets, Berkeley fire engines and
                                            Activities included a “Kid Carnival” with      their crews also took turns posing for pic-
                                         games, arts and crafts, face painting, classes    tures and letting children climb carefully on
                                         in dancing the “Bunny Hop” and a chance           the apparatus.
                                         to be seen with the “Spring Bunny”, a large,        The digital camera dictated the day. Each
                                         white and pink creature who wandered              child came away from the event with a
                                         through the crowd with a handler, a basket-       couple of dozen pieces of candy or prizes,
                                         ful of candy, and a penchant for posing for       and each parent probably had a couple of
                                         pictures.                                         hundred photographs. It was not uncommon
                                            By late morning the Park was filled with       to see one adult accompanying a child and
                                         celebrants, some in colorful costume, others      the other chasing behind (or running ahead)
                                         in daily attire. There was no Easter Parade,      to get the best picture.
                                         but rather a kaleidoscope of activities. No         On a historical note, Berkeley Easter /
                                         rain either.                                      Spring events go back a long way. In the
                                            The northern half of the large Willard         1920s and 30s real eggs were decorated
                                         lawn was reserved as an “egg hunt” area           and collected for a mass hunt in Codornices
                                         with carefully planned schedules for each         Park.
                                         age group. “One year old and younger” got           Bonus activity; see how many times you
                                         to go at 10:30, eight to ten year olds had to     can spot the “Spring Bunny” in the accom-
                                         wait until 11:45.                                 panying pictures.
                                            It wasn’t so much a hunt, really, as a scat-
                                         tering of hundreds of plastic eggs and other
                                         colorful, small, objects on the open grass but
                                         all the participants seemed to be pleased as
                                         they rushed happily about. City staffers went
                                                                                           MEMORIALS MARK
                                         about tossing out handfuls of extra eggs as       WEEK AT UC BERKELEY
                                         freely as parking tickets.
                                                                                           By Steven Finacom, Special to the Planet
                                            To bring you, dear readers, an accurate        Tue Apr 26 21:17:00 -0700 2011
                                         account of the proceedings I investigated a
                                         couple of overlooked eggs. They contained
                                         not candy but small toys. City staff had also
                                         placed bins around with signs encouraging
                                         participants to recycle the plastic eggshells.
                                            $5 bought each child a colorful straw
                                         basket and a wristband to participate in the
                                         games and events.
                                            One of the more popular activities was a
                                         small petting zoo set up under an oak tree
                                         at the edge of the lawn. Within the wire
                                         enclosure there were ducks, little chickens,
                                         a tiny pig, a young miniature goat, multiple
                                         and multicolored rabbits, and an enormous
                                         rooster. Children were let in a few at a time.
                                            The rooster, one of the petting zoo staff
                                         said, was a rose Cochin, four months old.
                                         He looked like the largest animal in the pen
                                         and stalked about regally. Around 11:00
                                         am he started to crow, the perfect Saturday
                                         wake-up call for Berkeley residents needing
                                         a reminder that it was time to go to brunch.
                                            The little pig wandered around wagging
                                         its tail, the goat looked adorable, and the
About equal numbers of young children,
           If the week before last there was a spirit
       of celebration on the UC Berkeley campus,
       including the Cal Day Open House, the third
       week of April might be characterized as
       more contemplative.
          The Armenian Student Association held
       several days of events as part of Genocide
       Awareness Week, concluding on campus
       with a “United Hands Across Cal” com-
       memoration on Sproul Plaza. Students
       and community members gathered to hold
       hands, listen to speeches, music, and silence
       during the Friday lunch hour. Berkeley City
       Councilmember Kriss Worthington was one
       of the speakers, and words of support were
       offered by representatives of Jewish, Mus-
       lim, and Iranian student organizations.
          Earlier in the week, symbolic candles
       and an information table marked Memorial
       Glade in front of Doe Library.
          Friday evening about 70 students and oth-
       ers from Newman Hall, Holy Spirit Parish-
       -the Roman Catholic student center south
       of the University--participated in a Good
       Friday “Ecumenical Stations of the Cross”
       procession across the Berkeley campus,
       reenacting the journey of Jesus to his cruci-
          Beginning at Sather Gate they carried a
       cross to several stops on the campus where
       Biblical verses were read and more recent
       social activism recalled. Students alternated
       in carrying the wooden cross. At one point
       the procession passed behind a contingent of
       the Cal Marching Band which was giving a
       concert on Lower Sproul Plaza. Another one
       of the stops was next to the “Football Play-
       ers” statue on campus.
          On Monday, an array of small black rib-
       bons was placed on a lawn near Sather Gate,
       in front of a sign that said “On Average, 1
       Mexican Murdered Per Hour Because of the
       Drug War in Mexico, since 2006...What will
       YOU Do?”

       The Berkeley Times, Just
       Another Arm of the Machine
       Gale Garcia
       Tue Apr 26 11:57:00 -0700 2011
          A reporter from the Berkeley Times called
       a couple of weeks ago to interview me about
       the lawsuit over the misuse of Measure FF
       library bond funding. I returned his call for
       two reasons, to read him the clear, unam-
       biguous wording of Measure FF and to see if
       the Berkeley Times would do justice to the
interview.                                         A Missing, but Significant                         The South Berkeley branch of the Berkeley
   I believe that Berkeley voters were                                                                Public Library, in its present condition, is a
deliberately misled about library officials’
                                                   Piece of the Branch Library                        major lawsuit just waiting to happen. It’s a
intentions for the South and West Branch Li-       Renovation Debate.                                 testimony to the patience of the numerous
braries when Measure FF was on the ballot                                                             people with disabilities in this City that it
                                                   By Blane Beckwith                                  hasn’t already happened.
in 2008. The Argument in Favor of Measure
                                                   Wed Apr 27 11:15:00 -0700 2011
FF stated, “Renovations will preserve and                                                               In any lawsuit of this type would prob-
restore the historic architectural features at        Lately there has been much heated debate        ably be rather high profile, and attract a fair
the branch libraries” – with no mention of         about tearing down the South Berkeley              amount of media attention, especially if that
demolitions at all. The Argument, which            library. Many people around this neighbor-         was a class-action lawsuit with numerous
was an important piece of ballot informa-          hood are quite outraged, and keep protesting       plaintiffs. How would this look in Berkeley,
tion for the Measure, was signed by Tom            that this building doesn’t need to be torn         California the so-called “birthplace of the
Bates, Shirley Dean, Miriam Hawley, Darryl         down. However, I say otherwise. This build-        independent living movement”?
Moore and Nancy Skinner.                           ing should be replaced.
   I think it is unconscionable to have prom-         During this entire debate,there is one          The Coup in Cote d’Ivoire
ised restoration of the historic features of       very notable aspect that seems to have been
the branch libraries if the intention was, as it   forgotten. That forgotten factor is the Ameri-     By Jean Damu
appears, to restore the North and Claremont        cans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the           Wed Apr 27 10:45:00 -0700 2011
Branch libraries and to demolish the librar-       safeguards it provides to guarantee physi-            As peace loving and progressive forces
ies in the flatlands.                              cal access to public facilities. As a person       in the West and in the US in particular
   The Berkeley Times reporter never asked         with a disability, I’m rather insulted that this   deliriously celebrated the awakening of
me where I reside, but said in his article,        important issue hasn’t, to my knowledge,           pro-democratic movements in white domi-
published on April 14, that I lived in the         even been mentioned let alone taken into           nated Islamic countries that routinely and
Claremont district. I wrote a short letter to      consideration.                                     officially kick blacks to the curb, growing
the editor correcting this mistake. I clari-          In its present condition, the South Berke-      evidence suggests the West, led by France,
fied that in my many decades of residence          ley library is so far out of compliance with       engineered a political and military coup in
in Berkeley, I have only lived in Districts 3      the ADA it isn’t even funny. In fact, it’s         the Cote d’Ivoire, that some say is designed
and 1, the very districts where the South and      deplorable. This building is so crowded with       to re-colonize that country.
West Branch libraries are located.                 bookshelves, tables, chairs, computer ter-            Set beside widespread beliefs the West
   I sent an e-mail to the Editor of the Times,    minals for Internet access, newspaper racks,       i.e., Europe and the US, is doing much the
Todd Kerr, asking him to confirm that he           and other things that one can hardly make it       same in Libya, the Cote d’Ivoire situation
had received and would print my letter. He         inside the front door with a wheelchair.           needs to be looked at anew, especially in
responded that he had received it and that he         As a disabled person who uses a wheel-          light of late reports indicate fighting has bro-
would call me, which he never did. He did          chair, I haven’t been able to use this facility    ken out among the very forces of Alissane
not print my letter. Instead, another biased       for at least ten years. I am sick and tired of     Ouattara that overthrew and arrested the
article promoting the position of those who        this fact, especially since I only live three      constitutionally certified president, Laurent
want the flatland libraries demolished ap-         blocks away from it. Even though I am this         Gbagbo.
peared in the April 21 issue. It stated as a       close to the South Berkeley library branch,           Fascinatingly in the US among the very
“correction” that the previous article had not     I can’t use it and must go clear downtown          few that have raised a note of protest to the
made it clear that, “Gale Garcia is currently      whenever I want to use the library. It’s           alleged coup are Evangelical Christians, led
a resident of South Berkeley” (well, yes,          totally ridiculous!                                by Pat Robertson and his Christian Broad-
currently – and for the last 33 years – and           For those people who oppose tearing             casting Network. In Africa a growing list of
cumulatively for most of my life).                 down the South Berkeley library, I would           countries including Gambia, South Africa
   I have been suspicious of the Berkeley          like to ask one big question. How do they          and Angola are protesting the intervention
Times ever since its first issue was pub-          plan on making this small, inadequate build-       of the West and the overthrow ofPresident
lished right before an election with a school      ing ADA compliant and maintain it’s present        Gbagbo.
bond measure on the ballot – it seemed odd         level of service? In my opinion, it cannot be         The Mouse that Roared
that a new newspaper, printed in full color        done. This building is simply too small and           Despite the fact Gambia is the smallest
(very expensive), would have articles about        needs to be replaced with something larger.        country on continental Africa on Sunday,
Berkeley schools on 12 of its 20 pages. If            The Americans with Disabilities Act was         April 17 Gambian president Yahya Jammeh
you read the Berkeley Times for news, be           twenty years old this past June, and it’s high     issued a vigorous anti-colonial, anti-imperi-
aware that you might be getting only one           time that people started realizing to not take     alist call in defense of the deposed Gbagbo.
side of the story, the side that the Bates Ma-     this crucial issue seriously is wrong, both
chine wants you to hear.                                                                                 The statement read on Gambian television
                                                   morally and legally. Granted, there is very        and reprinted in Banjul newspapers said in
                                                   little we can do to change people’s morals.        part,
                                                   However, when it comes to legal issues, we
                                                                                                         The events in Ivory Coast have vindicated
                                                   most certainly can.
                                                                                                      us on our earlier assertion that Western neo-
                                                      The ADA gives we disabled the power to          colonialist sponsored agents in Africa that
                                                   not only file a discrimination claim with the      owe allegiance only to themselves and their
                                                   Department of Justice, but also gives us the       Western masters are ready to walk on thou-
                                                   power to file a lawsuit for discrimination.
sands of dead bodies to the Presidency. That    Ivory Coast should create should create a          received no votes, ed.), it was not able to do
is what is happening in Ivory Coast.            government of national unity, on the basis of      so and therefore the Constitutional Council
   Africans should not only wake up, but        dialogue, since Laurent Gbagbo was consti-         will take up the issue and make a ruling.”
stand up to the new attempts to re-colonize     tutionally elected.                                   Their ruling: Laurent Gbagbo was the
Africa through so called elections that are        “War doesn’t work, there needs to be a          winner.
organized just to fool the people, since the    peaceful solution to the crisis. Angola will          In an interview CBN international affairs
true verdict of the people would not be         not enter Ivory Coast like the French,”            correspondent Gary Lane asked evangelical
respected if it does not go in favor of the     Angolan government spokesman Jose-Marie            tycoon Pat Robertson an interesting ques-
Western backed candidates, as has happened      Fernandes said.                                    tion, “Who swore Ouattara in as president?
in Cote D’Ivoire and elsewhere in Africa….         Curious and Likely Unreliable Allies            The UN? France? I spoke to all seven mem-
   Our position is very clear. The case of         The current crisis in the Cote d’Ivoire (if     bers of the Constitutional Council and to a
Laurent Gbagbo is a replica of the case of      it can still be defined a crisis) witnessed the    man they laid out all the evidence of why
Patrice Lumumba who, as a freedom fighter       takeover of the capital Abidjan by northern        they declared Gbagbo the president and why
for the dignity and independence of not only    rebels led by Allasane Ouattara, the arrest        they think the election was fraudulent. So
Congolese people but the entire black race,     of president Laurent Gbagbo and his family         who swore Ouattara in?”
was overthrown by Western powers includ-        and finally Ouattara being sworn in as presi-         The answer: Ouattara swore himself in!
ing the UN, and handed over to his enemies      dent. The crisis stems from Gbagbo’s refusal       He did it by sending an email to the Consti-
to be murdered.                                 to accept results from what he considered          tutional Council declaring himself president.
   History is repeating itself as the same      the highly fraudulent presidential elections       He did this immediately after the Council
neocolonial forces that overthrew Patrice       of November 28, 2010.                              had sworn in Gbagbo.
Lumumba, captured him and handed him               Gbagbo and his supporters say that in the          Lane went on to say that he considered
over to his enemies almost fifty years ago,     November elections, elections that compare         “a soft coup d’etat” had taken place in Cote
are the same forces involved in the Ivory       to US primaries, Gbagbo received tens of           d’Ivoire in an obvious attempt by France at
Coast with the only difference being that it    thousands of votes in the 4 northern regions-      re-colonization.
is now a different former colonial power.       but in the runoff election he was credited            “Gary, I think you’re right on the money,”
   The statement went on to suggest that        with not one single vote.                          Robertson said.
an interim government of national unity be         “This is a statistical impossibility!” wailed      Evidence in support of this theory is that
formed to immediately organize new elec-        US Senator James Inhofe (D-OK) to his              Gbagbo was beginning to make noises and
tions and that Ouattara be excluded from        senatorial colleagues. Inhofe, an evangeli-        threats regarding nationalization of Cote d’
running based on his illegal taking of power.   cal Christian and key spokesman for the            Ivoire’s cocoa industry, an industry that has
   In January, South Africa, in a move that     creationist movement in congress, went on          seen world cocoa prices skyrocket.
temporarily frustrated international efforts    to point out to his fellow senators that in           But Robertson’s real interest in the Cote
to dislodge Gbagbo parked its naval frigate     one northern region, “We have the precinct         d’Ivoire is likely bolstered by his concern,
SAS Drakensberg off the coast of the Cote       tallies of one region alone where Ouattara         real or imagined, that a new government
d’Ivoire. The move was widely seen as a         received 94,873 votes and Gbagbo received          there would restrict evangelical teachings of
statement that South Africa wanted a diplo-     none…if you multiply that times four you           the Bible
matic end to the standoff and with Gbagbo       have the margin that Gbagbo allegedly lost
                                                                                                      However the malevolent Three Blind
included in any coalition government.           the election by.”
                                                                                                   Mice (France, the UN and European Union)
   South Africa’s aggressive posture was           Despite Inhofe’s shaky logic (you would         weren’t having it-they declared Ouattara
counteracted by then acting Nigeria presi-      need to examine all 4 regional vote totals to      the legitimate president of Cote d’Ivoire
dent Goodluck Johnson. Johnson, who also        reach his conclusion) it doesn’t seem possi-       and began aiding and fueling his forces and
presided over ECOWAS (Economic Com-             ble that any responsible political body would      sending in their own forces.
munity of West African States) provided         certify an election in which one of just two
                                                                                                      The social base of Ouattara’s move-
political cover for French and UN interven-     candidates received no votes in 500 polling
                                                                                                   ment is mostly comprised of the offspring
tion by declaring West African support for      stations. But that’s just what the Electoral
                                                                                                   of large numbers of migrant workers from
Ouattara.                                       Commission did, they certified the election
                                                                                                   Guinea, Mali and Burkina Faso (formerly
   The South Africa-Nigeria split on Cote       claiming Ouattara received 54.1% of the
                                                                                                   Upper Volta) who were encouraged in the
d’Ivoire was complicated by the fact both       vote while Gbagbo received just 45.9%.
                                                                                                   1960’s by first Cote d”Ivoire president, Felix
countries are vying to become permanent            In an anti-climax, however, Constitutional      Houphouet-Boigny, to migrate and work on
members of the UN’s Security Council and        Council president Paul Yao N’dre appeared          the coffee and cocoa plantations. They have
both are attempting to gain ascendancy over     on state television and declared the election      remained and to this day are considered by
African foreign policy issues.                  results “invalid.” The Constitutional Council      many to be foreigners.
   Tellingly however, Johnson who on April      is the legal body charged with upholding
                                                                                                      Alissane Ouattara, despite (or maybe
16 was declared the winner of Nigeria’s         the Cote d’Ivoire constitution. It is they who
                                                                                                   because of) having been an official at the
presidential election is now being accused      swear the president into office.
                                                                                                   World Bank, had been instrumental in
of voter fraud on virtually the same scale         “CEI (Independent Electoral Commission)         organizing a series of military coups against
alleged against Ouattara.                       was supposed to declare the results by latest      Gbagbo. Though the earlier coup attempts
   In early April Angola had issued strong      on Wednesday (Dec. 1) midnight, but due to         failed the 2002 attempt was successful in
words in support of Gbagbo that backed the      disagreements (among themselves ed.) over          virtually splitting the country in half, which
Gambian position. “…we also think that          results from some regions (four northern re-       explains why the 500 polling stations that
                                                gions controlled by Ouagttara where Gbagbo
claimed Gbagbo received no votes were all       paid staff of the News Department. Howev-         good radio in times of financial challenges.
in the regions dominated by Ouattara forces.    er, some claimed that Pacifica was forced to         We progressives can engage in construc-
  As reports of murder and detention of         hire Brian back and that Pacifica then tried      tive debate about how the station should be
Gbagbo supporters increase likely the Cote      to layoff John Hamilton in retaliation.           run, what really serves the progressive com-
d’Ivoire story is far from over.                   2. Casting the Cuts as Management-             munity and furthers the goals of independent
                                                Union Conflict.                                   media, but first and foremost the station
Time for the KPFA                                  Some have tried to cast the cuts as a          must be financially viable in order to remain
Community to Come                               conflict between management and union and
                                                vilified the Pacifica management, especially         In spite of the conflict at the station, the
Together                                        the Executive Director Arlene Engelhardt.         listeners have continued to financially sup-
By Akio Tanaka,KPFA LSB member                     One board member, Matt Hallinan wrote          port the station, donating very generously
Wed Apr 27 11:26:00 -0700 2011                  in the Planet that “ArleneEngelhardt seized       during the recent fund drives, so that April
                                                all power at KPFA.”                               financial report shows that KPFA has slight
   This time last year KPFA was in dire fi-                                                       surplus for the fiscal year. (Station still has
                                                   Arlene saved KPFA from brink of bank-
nancial circumstances. The Pacifica National                                                      sizable past due expenses.)
                                                ruptcy by making the necessary cuts, after
Board (PNB) stepped in to bring the KPFA                                                             We should give credit to the Executive
                                                which she installed a General Manager and
finances under control which necessitated                                                         Director Arlene Engelhardt for trying to
                                                an interim Program Director.
some cuts in staff. Seven people took vol-                                                        reign in the precarious financial situation
untary severance, and in the end two people        Another board member, Pamela Drake,
                                                posted on the Web that “Arlene-Engelhardt-        at KPFA and helping to put the station on a
were laid off.                                                                                    more solid financial footing.
                                                Walker and her austerity budget, but has
   A controversy about the cuts ensued and
                                                she taken a pay cut?” “Austerity, austerity,
has divided the KPFA community. The
five months of controversy have revealed
                                                austerity, Engelhardt takes lessons from          General Welfare (Verse)
                                                Gov. Walker. Shame, shame. She is killing         By Ove Ofteness
some of the substantive differences between
                                                the station as every staffing cut they make       Tue Apr 26 16:29:00 -0700 2011
those who propose different solutions, but
                                                seems to reduce income while she takes
it is time for the KPFA community to come                                                           Promoting the general welfare,
                                                more for the Pacifica bureaucracy. Shame.”
                                                   Arlene, the Executive Director, makes            We’ll cut education and health care.
   1. Chronology: Sept 2010 to March
                                                twice the salary of an entry level paid staff;      Do not reach maturity.
                                                Pacifica has a very flat organizational pay         Social Security?
   September: The ‘Listener Support’            scale.
declined sharply between 2005 and 2009,                                                             We see no promise of wealth there.
                                                   Another board member, Mal Burnstein,
‘Payments to Pacifica’ was reduced pro-
                                                posted on the Web that “From what we are
portionately and Pacifica laid off most of
                                                hearing so far, the new IGM is sounding like
its staff two years ago, but there was no
                                                a fig leaf over Arlene’s exposed genitals.”
corresponding reduction in ‘Salaries and
Benefits’ at KPFA. KPFA was on a brink of          Kriss Worthington of the Berkeley City         Letters to the Editor
bankruptcy so the PNB intervened to make        Council astutely observed, this is not a battle
                                                between management and union but a battle         Tax Refunds Held by City of Berkeley;
cuts in the staff. However, some claimed
                                                between progressives that have differing vi-      Library Lawsuit; Worth Repeating:
that Pacifica had a hit list to purge politi-
                                                sions for KPFA and Pacifica.                      Democracy; School Project Query; Cu-
cal opponents which caused much alarm
                                                   We need to reject people who have tried        riosity; Confidence Game; Republicans;
amongst the staff.
                                                to cast this as management union conflict,        Budget
   November: Pacifica offered all the KPFA
paid staff an option to take voluntary          and especially those who have engaged in
                                                vilification of Arlene Engelhardt.                Tax Refunds Held by City of Berkeley
severance. In the end seven people took                                                              T’m just wondering if you have received
voluntary severance and two people were            3. Time for the KPFA Community to
                                                                                                  information about the City of Berkeley
laid off, Brian Edwards-Tiekert and Aimee       Come Together
                                                                                                  attaching peoples’ tax returns for parking
Allison. The layoffs followed the union            Because seven people took voluntary            violations even after those citations had been
contract which says: “In cases where skill,     severance, only two people were laid off,         paid off? I paid off my parking citation to
ability, knowledge and job performance are      and one of those was rehired by exercising        the City of Berkeley in November and $156
all equal, or could be equal in the opinion     his bumping rights.                               was still deducted from my state income tax
of the Employer after reasonable orienta-          The new morning line up has Democracy          refund in March. Since that time it has been
tion and training, seniority shall prevail”.    Now in a timeslot where more people can           like pulling teeth to get the over-payment
The contract also gave seniority bumping        listen to it, and KPFA listeners can now also     refunded to me. Even though the City’s
rights to laid-off members. However, some       listen to Al Jazeera.                             records showed I had paid the citation, they
claimed that layoff violated the terms of the      In the interim, to help meet the financial     made me send in all back up documentation,
union contract and that Pacifica was engaged    challenges facing the station, volunteer          which I did right away. Today I was told it
in union busting which caused many labor        listeners and the unpaid staff stepped up to      would take another 4-6 weeks to receive re-
supporters to question the cuts.                produce the Morning Mix.                          imbursement of the overpaid/collected $156.
   March: Brian exercised his seniority            We should be thankful of the skills and        When I call they just seem to push the issue
bumping rights, which was available to him      dedication of paid and unpaid staff that have     under the carpet and keep making excuses
from the beginning, and was rehired as a        allowed the station to continue to broadcast      as to why I am being reimbursed the over-
collection. It would seem that someone from          Israel is really a police state. If they don’t   eager to turn their vision into reality. When
the City should have notified the collec-         put you in jail, they at least put you out of       will our lawmakers understand the value of
tion agency they hired when payment were          your job for saying anything they don’t             the creativity of young minds? When will
received rather than the collection agency        want you to say. They claim they don’t have         they feel happy about allocating enough
proceeding with collecting debts that had         censorship--Possession is nine-tenths of the        money to help young people become scien-
been paid in full from tax refunds. I am a        law. Occupancy is very difficult to overcome        tists, doctors, social workers and educators?
single working mother and should certainly        and Israel has already got the Palestinians’        In the current hurry to balance the budget
be entitled to my own tax refund rather than      land.                                               lawmakers have forgotten about the needs
the City of Berkeley holding onto money              The only way they will ever give it up           of our youngest citizens. They tell us to be
not owed to them. I just wonder how many          is if they’re thrown out. There is no other         self dependent and find the solution our-
other people have run into this issue and         way that they’ll ever give back the Palestin-       selves. But I wonder how three year olds
how much money the City of Berkeley is            ians their share of the land. It’s encouraging      can be finding their way or how they can be
sitting on rather than reimbursing the over-      to see how divided the Jews are amongst             left alone to look after themselves. Require
payments.                                         themselves, “A house divided against itself         them to practice fiscal responsibility at this
   Pam Dahl                                       shall not stand.”-                                  age? What happened to common kindness?
   ***                                               The Palestinians are a lot more together         Young children need attentive teachers and
                                                  than any of them, at least they’re united--the      safe environments in which to learn. How do
   Library Lawsuit
                                                  Christians and Arabs. I’m glad to see a lot of      we expect educational standards to Improve
   Patti Dacey writes that charges of racism                                                          without giving young children the opportu-
are being thrown around in the discussion of      the Jews are sympathizing with the Arabs.
                                                                                                      nity to learn from well-educated teachers?
the library lawsuit.                                 Ted Rudow III, MA
                                                                                                      Let us think about investing in children first.
   Her reference to racism is the first time         ***                                              Our keenest self interest lies in creating ca-
I’ve seen the word used in this context. Let’s       School Project Query                             pable and thoughtful citizens of the America
not try to make it look like something is            We are a group of four Berkeley High             of the future.
happening that isn’t. The plaintiff is not rac-   Seniors who are interested in getting the              Romila Khanna
ist, but the lawsuit may have the same effect.    word out about our Senior Project. For your            ***
    Linda Schacht                                 general information, the Senior Project is
                                                                                                         Confidence Game
   ***                                            considered to be one of the more important
                                                  final pieces of collaborated and intensely             The cycle of recession and rebound is
   Worth Repeating                                                                                    what you would call a confidence game,
                                                  thought out work students produce near the
   Tom Del Beccaro, California Republi-                                                               perpetrated by the biggest con man and
                                                  end of their high school experience. Our
can Party chairman said, “We’re going to                                                              swindler. He has succeeded very well, and
                                                  project is a full-scale guide and interview
bring this state closer together.” What, with                                                         the economic world has a false foundation
                                                  manual of Berkeley High and life in Berke-
Republican and Tea Party anti-abortion, anti-                                                         today, a paper one, which could go up in
                                                  ley. We are intending on making this a full-
gay and anti-tax crusades? With budget cuts                                                           smoke if the right match were applied to
                                                  scale publication and have it published, even
to services for the elderly, poor and needy,                                                          it. They seek to trick and swindle as many
                                                  after the deadline of the assignment. Lucian
who are already living hand to mouth? By                                                              people as possible.
                                                  Novosel, closely related to Jim Novosel, was
more tax cuts to the uber-rich who are al-                                                               Accord to the Wall Street Journal, hedge
                                                  the brainchild of this idea. We are attempt-
ready insulated from the rest of society?                                                             funds are bounding back, with return-hungry
                                                  ing to interview various classes at Berkeley
   How can a mostly white, pseudo-religious       High, the Berkeley High Administration              investors pumping up the industry to a size
and conservative party, that brooks no dif-       and even the Security Guards to get a wide          not seen since before the financial crisis laid
ference, unite with the rest of California that   berth of information. We are wondering if           it low. Total hedge-fund assets are approach-
is young at heart, racially diverse and open      you would be able to make a short news              ing $2 trillion and are soon expected to sur-
minded? This looks like more smoke and            post about this on your site, so that we have       pass their peak in early 2008, according to
mirrors from fraternity who sees dwindling        a reliable source of promotion and also so          industry analysts. .The resurrection of hedge
support for its archaic and mean-spirited         that we can see if some of the community of         funds, which invest money for wealthy
policies. Where is the common ground?             Berkeley would be interested in perhaps be-         individuals, pension funds and other large
   Ron Lowe                                       ing interviewed by one of us about the city         investors, marks yet another sign that the ef-
   ***                                            so that they can be credited in our project.        fects of the financial crisis are receding.”
   Democracy                                      We’re really looking forward to our project            So, little by little, the skeptics are won
   As the conventional wisdom goes – es-          and to be able to do something for the city         over to invest their funds, to take a chance
pecially in the West – Israel is the “only        that’s educated us for practically our whole        on making more money. And there is a
democracy” in the Middle East. And that           lives. Please consider us and let us know           rebound, for there are still people to be
is so, particularly for its Jewish citizens.      what you think. Thank you!-                         convinced that things will keep going up—
However Israel has been anything but                 Muhammad Khan, Emiliano Ruiz, Rina Li,           indeed, must keep going up. And one day,
democratic for the indigenous people of the       Lucian Novosel.                                     the downturn will become another recession,
land, the Palestinian Arabs. By nature and           ***                                              the recession will become a depression, and
precedence, foreign military occupation is                                                            the depression will become another Crash.
temporary. Colonialism on the other hand,                                                                Ted Rudow III, MA
                                                     If I could have what I wished for I would
and more precisely civilian colonization, is a    want all children to keep their curiosity.             ***
socio-political system of ruling over another     They would be eager to discover things and             Republicans
   Do you remember the 8 years of the Bush     tioned that, in previous eras, the two Parties   word Rush Limbaugh utters. As a conse-
presidency, with White House spokesman         had often worked together, a freshman            quence of these cultural differences there are
Ari Fleischer saying, “People should watch     Republican barked, “We were sent here to         two radically different perceptions of “real-
what they say?” There was the Patriot Act,     shrink the government, not collaborate with      ity.” Republicans don’t appreciate a Demo-
the weakening of habeas corpus, stolen         you.” President Obama seeks bipartisanship,      cratic policy position because they never
elections, and dissent was characterized as    but most Republicans aren’t interested in        hear it discussed seriously; the conventional
treason by the Bush administration.            pursuing the common good.                        “wisdom” in Red districts is dramatically
   From illegal wiretaps, the unlawful            As Congress plods through its business,       different from that in Blue districts. There is
imprisonment of American citizens, and the     Democrats and Republicans are miles              a huge communication failure.
creeping influence of religious extremism at   apart on issue after issue. On jobs and the         Perhaps Republican dogmatism stems
the highest levels of the U.S. government,     economy, Democrats want more government          from their negative worldview. UC Profes-
we saw it all.                                 intervention, while Republicans believe the      sor George Lakoff’s classic Moral Politics
   Is that what you want again? Do you think   Feds should get out of the way of the “free      postulates that Democrats see the world in
Republicans have changed one iota except       market.” On the Deficit, Democrats advocate      positive terms – the “nurturant parent” mod-
to become worse? The GOP, and its joined       taxes on the rich and selective cuts to pro-     el – and value collaboration and empathy.
at the hip sidekicks the Tea Party, will do    grams; Republicans abhor taxes and demand        In contrast Republicans adhere to the “strict
anything to regain power and the White         massive cuts to entitlements. On Healthcare,     father” worldview, where life is dangerous
House in 2012.                                 Democrats want the Affordable Healthcare         and citizens must take a defensive stance
   That includes derailing the economy.        plan to become a single-payer system; Re-        and organize hierarchically. It could be that
We’re already seeing Republicans using         publicans want “Obamacare” to be repealed.       Republicans don’t compromise because they
budget cuts at the federal and state levels,   Democrats take Global Climate Change             view it as a sign of weakness; they regard
trying to suck the life out of the improving   seriously and advocate a drastic change in       Democrats as wimps and fools who don’t
economy.                                       energy use and production; Republicans           understand how perilous the US situation is.
                                               deny the problem and argue America should           Differing values provides a final explana-
   Ron Lowe
                                               extract oil and gas wherever we can. It’s        tion. In recent years Democrats and Repub-
   ***                                         difficult to find any area of agreement or       licans have developed conflicting perspec-
   Budget                                      political middle ground.                         tives on core American values. On April 13,
   I am not sure who came out on top in           As the US faces a series of daunting prob-    President Obama gave a succinct summary
the budget negotiations. The Democrats         lems, political dialogue grows increasingly      of historic American values: “we are all
blamed the Republicans for threatening to      adversarial. President Obama seeks compro-       connected,” “each one of us deserves some
shut down the government, but the Demo-        mise, but Republicans seem ideologically         basic measure of security,” “We believe, in
crats should have passed a budget before the   intractable, unable or unwilling to change       the words of our first Republican president,
fiscal year began on October 1st when they     their stance.                                    Abraham Lincoln, that through government,
had a majority on both houses of Congress.        There are four possible explanations for      we should do together what we cannot do as
Republicans supposedly were trying to cut      the adamantine Republican posture. The first     well for ourselves,” [we value] “fairness…
government spending and help the economy,      is political. Republican legislators have been   shared responsibility and shared sacrifice,”
but if they had indeed shut down the govern-   indoctrinated to believe that if they do not     and “this sense of responsibility – to each
ment, it would have damaged our economy.       toe the conservative Party line, radical “Tea    other and to our country – this isn’t a parti-
The shutdowns in late 1995 and early 1996      Party” activists will campaign against them      san felling… It’s patriotism.”
cost the government more than $1.4 billion     in the next election. As a consequence, many        In contrast, many Republicans no longer
to repay salaries of employees on furlough,    Republican politicians are afraid to compro-     believe Democracy is based upon empathy;
lost national park and museum fees, etc. In    mise less they lose office.                      they no longer accept the axiom, “we are
short, the budget war reflects incompetence                                                     all connected.” As a consequence, Repub-
                                                  Cultural differences provide a second
and cowardice. As Will Rogers said, “This                                                       licans do not share the Founders’ vision of
                                               explanation for Republican political rigid-
country has come to feel the same when                                                          the basic American social compact. In their
                                               ity. Since the 2000 election, the United
Congress is in session as when the baby gets                                                    “patriotism” each of us stands alone.
                                               States has become more polarized and the
hold of a hammer.”
                                               differences between Blue and Red areas              Moreover, these differences between
   Ralph E. Stone                              have increased. Even in a Blue state, such       Democratic and Republican values suggest
                                               as California, gerrymandering has created        that political polarization has had signficant

                                               Congressional districts that are deeply Red.     psychological consequences. In his best-
                                               Across the US, public sentiment differs          seller, Mindsight UCLA psychiatrist Daniel
                                               dramatically in Blue and Red districts. Here     Siegel notes that happy people are empathic
The Public Eye: The Death of                   are on the Left Coast, one seldom hears          and share characteristics “such as gratitude,
Bipartisanship                                 serious discussion of whether or not Barack      compassion, open-mindedness, and curios-
                                               Obama was born in the United States and          ity.” Dr. Siegel contrasts these folks with
By Bob Burnett                                 we do not believe that Muslims, in general,      unhappy non-empathetic people in states of
Tue Apr 26 10:22:00 -0700 2011                 hate America. In Red areas, voters take the      distress “characterized as either rigidity or
   At the beginning of the 112th Congress,     “birther” controversy seriously and fear         chaos…stuck in depression or paralyzed by
a Bay Area Congresswoman was invited to        Muslims. Blue and Red districts have widely      fear.” Dogmatic rigidity is an indicator of
a Washington gathering of new Representa-      different information silos. Blues listen to     poor mental health, a state that leads to poor
tives, mostly Republicans. When she men-       Rachel Maddow and Reds hang on every             life decisions and ultimately disintegration.

   The values that Barack Obama defends           and the IMF, that might not be the worst out-      attacking the deficit would secure the “trust”
are those both of the Founders of the United      come for the distressed countries involved.        of the financial community, thus lowering
States and healthy people in general. In          The current formula for “saving” economies         interest rates to fuel economic growth. But
contrast, Republicans values – “you’re            in Ireland and Greece consists of severely         retail sales fell 3.5 percent in March, house-
on your own,” “the market will provide,”          depressing economic activity that is likely to     hold income is predicted to fall 2 percent,
“compromise is for wimps” – are profoundly        lock those countries into a downward spiral        and projections for growth have been down-
dysfunctional and signal the death of bipar-      of poverty and unemployment that will last         graded from 2.4 percent to 1.7 percent. In
tisanship.                                        at least a decade.                                 terms of British people’s incomes, this is the
   Bob Burnett is a Berkeley writer. He can          First, it is important to understand that the   worst performance since the Great Depres-
be reached at              so-called “bailouts” of Greece and Ireland,        sion of the 1930s. “In my view, we are in
                                                  and the one proposed for Portugal, will not        serious danger of a double-dip recession,”
Dispatches From The Edge:                         “save” those countries economies. As Simon         says London Business School economist
                                                  Tilford, chief economist for Center for            Richard Portes.
Europe’s Crisis & The Pain                        European Reform, points out, the money is             As bad as things are in Britain, they are
In Spain                                          being borrowed—at a high interest rate—            considerable worse in those countries that
                                                  to bail out speculators in Germany, France         bought into the “bail out.” Ireland’s growth
By Conn Hallinan
                                                  and Britain. It is German, French, British,        rate has been downgraded from an anemic
Tue Apr 26 09:47:00 -0700 2011
                                                  and Dutch banks that will profit from these        2.3 to a virtual flat line 1 percent, personal
   When the current economic crisis hit Eu-       “packages,” not the citizens of Ireland,           income has declined 20 percent, and un-
rope in 2008, small countries on the periph-      Greece, or Portugal.                               employment is at 14 percent. Greece is, if
ery were its first victims: Iceland, Ireland,        Indeed, Portugal was forced to ask for a        anything, worse, with a 30 percent jobless
and Latvia. Within a year it had spread to        bailout, not because its economy is in par-        rate among the young, an economy that is
Greece and Portugal, though the GDP of            ticularly bad shape, but because speculators       projected to fall 4 percent this year, and
both nations—respectively 11th and 12th in        in other EU countries drove up borrowing           between 2 and 3 percent the next.
the European Union (EU)—are hardly cen-           rates to a level that the government could            If Portugal—with an unemployment
tral to the continent’s economic engine.          no longer afford. Rather than intervening to       rate of 14 percent—takes the $116 billion
   But now the contagion threatens to strike      nip off the speculators, the European Central      bailout, it will torpedo what is left of that
at the center of Europe. Spain, the fifth larg-   Bank sat on its hands until the damage was         nation’s economy.
est economy in the EU and 13th largest in         done, the government fell, and Portugal               Even the managing director of the IMF
the world, is staggering under a combination      was essentially forced to sue for peace. The       seems to be taking a second look at this ap-
of debt and growth-killing austerity, and the     price for that will be steep: severe austerity,    proach. Dominique Strauss-Kahn recently
balance books in Italy, the Union’s fourth        brutal cutbacks, rising unemployment, and a        quoted John Maynard Keyes about the
largest economy, don’t look much better.          stagnant economy.                                  need for full employment and a more equal
Indeed, Italy’s national debt is higher than         Spainand Italy are vulnerable to the same       distribution of wealth and income. He also
that of Greece, Ireland or Portugal, three        forces that forced Portugal to its knees, only     warned that bailing out the financial sector
countries that have been forced to apply for      they are far bigger countries whose econom-        and focusing just on debt at the expense of
bailouts.                                         ic distress will have global effects.              the economy is a dead end strategy: “…the
   Spainis a victim of the same real estate          The current blueprint for reducing debt         lesson is clear: the biggest threat to fiscal
bubble that tanked the Irish economy. In          is to cut spending and privatize. But in a         sustainability is low growth.”
fact, house prices in both countries rose         recession, cutbacks increase unemployment,            Is this a serious change of heart by the
at almost exactly the same rate: 500 per-         which reduces tax revenues. That requires          organization, or does one needs to take the
cent over the decade. A feeding frenzy of         governments to borrow money, which in-             IMF director’s recent comments with a grain
speculation, fueled by generous banks and         creases debt and leads to yet more cutbacks.       of salt? He is rumored to be resigning this
accommodating governments, saw tens of            Once an economy is caught in this “debt            summer to run for president of France as a
thousands of housing units built that were        trap,” it is very difficult to break out. And      Socialist. Hard-nosed market fundamental-
never inhabited. There are currently 50,000       when economies do improve, cutbacks to             ism is not exactly the path toward heading
unsold units in Madrid alone and, according       education, health care, housing and transpor-      up that particular ticket. And while Strauss-
to the web site Pisosembargados, Spanish          tation put those countries at a competitive        Kahn says one thing, the IMF’s board of
banks are on track to eventually repossess        disadvantage.                                      directors—largely dominated by the U.S.
upwards of 300,000 units.                            For instance, Spain has drastically cut         Treasury Department—has yet to signal a
   Bailing out Ireland, Portugal and Greece       its education budget, resulting in a wave          change in course.
has strained the financial resources of the       of “early leaving” students—at a rate that            However, the director’s comments may
EU and the International Monetary Fund            is double that of the EU as a whole—and            reflect a growing recognition that “bailouts”
(IMF), but rescuing Spain would be consid-        a drop in reading, math and science skills.        that protect banks and their investors, while
erably more expensive. If Italy goes—with         Those figures hardly bode well for an              locking countries into a decade of falling
an economy a third larger than Spain’s and        economy in the information age.                    growth and rising poverty, are not only
more than twice as big as that of the EU’s           The “cuts to solve debt” theory is being        politically unsustainable, they makes little
three current basket cases—it is not clear        played out in real time these days.                economic sense.
the Union or its currency, the Euro, could                                                              The next step is debt restructuring, which
                                                     When the Conservative-Liberal alliance
survive.                                                                                             means investors will have to take some
                                                  took over in Britain, it cut spending $128
   Given the current tack being taken by EU       billion over five years, on the theory that        losses—a “haircut,” interest rates will be
lowered, and payments stretched out over            Senior Power: “Try to rea-                      and a teacher at the high school, is a jovial,
a longer period of time. So far, Greece and                                                         kindly man who loves his wife although he
Portugal are refusing to consider restructur-
                                                  son about love, and you will                      is aware of her infidelity. Long cross-country
ing because it will affect their credit status,   lose your reason,” wrote Rus-                     walks are his hobby. He is the honorary sec-
but in the end they may have no choice in         sian playwright Anton Pav-                        retary of the town’s rambling society. At the
the matter.                                       lovich Chekhov (1860-1904).                       end of the play, although he knows what his
   “The basic reality is that we cannot ser-                                                        wife has been up to, he takes her back and
                                                  By Helen Rippier Wheeler
vice our debt,” Greek economist Theodore                                                            accepts her failings.
                                                  Tue Apr 26 10:30:00 -0700 2011
Pelagid told the New York Times, “We don’t                                                             Chebutykin is an eccentric old man, an
need another bailout, we need creditors to           Three Sisters was produced in 1901, in         Army doctor-family friend who lavishes
take a hit.”                                      Moscow. It is one of his several great plays:     upon Irina a gift of an expensive samovar.
   Of course, there is always the Argentine       Ivanov (1887-1889), The Seagull (1896,            As the play opens, it is her name day, and
approach: default. Faced with an astro-           a comedy), Uncle Vanya (1897), and The            there’s a celebration going on. Chebutykin
nomical debt burden, a stalled economy,           Cherry Orchard (1903-04). He may have             loved the sisters’ mother. Some critics have
and growing poverty, Buenos Aires tossed          been inspired by the 19th Century liter-          suggested that Chekhov is suggesting that
in the towel and walked away from the             ary Bronte family associated with northern        Irina might be his daughter.
debt in 2001. “The economy shrank for just        England’s historic Yorkshire county -- sisters       Chekhov is different from those other
one quarter,” writes Mark Weisbrot of the         Charlotte(1816–1855), who wrote Jane Eyre         greats of Russian literature, novelists Leo
Guardian (UK),”and then grew 63 percent           using pen name Currer Bell, Emily (1818-          Tolstoy (1828-1910) or Fyodor Dostoevsky
over the next six years, recovering its pre-      1848) and Anne (1920-1849) -- and brother         (1821-1881). His plays have been described
crisis level of GDP in just three years.”         Patrick Branwell Brontë (1817–1848), a            as a succession of little scenes. The charac-
                                                  painter and poet. Or by three sisters who         ters often speak in little soliloquies. They
   So far there is no talk of defaulting by the
                                                  were living in Perm, in the European part of      sometimes seem alone in a crowd. There
financially stressed European countries, but
                                                  Russia.                                           is no clear message, no clear advocacy for
the subject is sure to come up, particularly
given the growing anger of the populace at           Chekhov must have been, in today’s lingo,      social reform, for example.
the current austerity programs. Hundreds          a nice person. And not just because he is            The frustrated sisters rely on pie-in-the-
of thousands of people have poured into           subtle, is concerned about women’s lives,         sky assumptions that are compounded by
the streets of Athens, Lisbon and London to       and combines realism (his belief that life        failure in love and work. If only… Olga
challenge the austerity-debt mantra, demon-       is ordinary) with hope and love and work.         regrets being a spinster and dislikes being
strations that are likely to grow in the com-     Three Sisters was written at the turn of the      a school teacher. “If we only knew… If we
ing months as the full impact of the cutbacks     20th Century, when he was about 40 years          only knew.” Masha has married the wrong
hit home.                                         old; within 5 years, his life was ended by        man and dislikes being a schoolmaster’s
                                                  tuberculosis.                                     wife. Irina’s fiancé is killed in a duel, and
   Icelandrecently voted to reject a 30-
year plan to pay British and Dutch banks             When we meet the Prozorov family, Rus-         she dislikes working in the post office. Even
$5.8 billion to cover their depositors who        sia is about to experience social and political   brother Andrei. He would have liked to
speculated on Iceland’s high interests rates.     upheaval that will transform her forever.         have been a professor in Moscow, but works
Britain and the Netherlands are threatening       The sisters “age” considerably as it becomes      for the municipal council, chaired by his
to block Iceland’s EU membership bid if it        clear that they are doomed to remain isolated     wife’s lover. Time passes. Andrei complains
doesn’t pay up, but these days, threats like      in a provincial town far away from their be-      “Where is my past life, oh, what has become
that might be treated more with relief than       loved Moscow. Eldest sister Olga’s opening        of it – when I was young, happy and intelli-
chagrin in Reykjavik.                             line -- “It’s exactly a year ago today since      gent, when I had such glorious thoughts and
                                                  Father died” -- is the first clue Chekhov         visions, and my present and future seemed
   The bailouts have had a devastating
                                                  gives us. Olga is 28 years old, Masha 25,         so bright and promising?”
impact on European politics. Governments
                                                  and Irina 20. Plus schlemiel brother Andrei.         Months may pass between scenes. Time is
have fallen in Ireland and Portugal, and the
Greek government is deeply unpopular. In             Chekhov is also concerned about the            a crucial ingredient in Chekov’sdrama. He
essence, the demands of banks and bond-           elders and not-young people who frame this        does not make it easy for us. The question
holders are unbalancing democratic institu-       picture. Ferapont, door-keeper watchman           of why the sisters are necessarily doomed
tions across the continent.                       whatever at the local council offices, is an      to remain isolated in the boonies is not
                                                  old man with a hearing loss. He blurts out        resolved. What’s to stop them from returning
   Spain’s unemployment rate is 20 percent,
                                                  irrelevant facts, usually relating to Moscow.     to Moscow? Is he suggesting that in the face
the highest in Europe. If the EU and the IMF
                                                  Andrei calls him a nuisance.                      of disappointment, women aren’t assertive?
sells it a “bailout” similar to the ones Ire-
land, Greece and Portugal accepted, Spain’s          Anfisa, the nana,is 82 years old and has       I don’t think so – there is plenty of action!
“pain” will be long lasting and brutal.           always worked for and been a part of the          Is this drama sad or funny? Both, I think, for
                                                  Prozorov family. “There’s no room for mis-        there is humor, and at times the sisters are
   And Italy—with its decade-long 1 percent
                                                  fits in this house” snaps crude intruder cum      perky, despite their disappointments in love.
growth rate—waits in the wings.
                                                  sister-in-law Natasha, who despises Anfisa’s      Victor Sawdon Pritchett, in praising Ruth
   If Italy goes, the EU will be split between                                                      Prawer Jhabvala’s writing, described her
                                                  feebleness and threatens to throw her out.
northern haves and southern have-nots. Can                                                          “Chekhovian in her detached observation of
                                                  But when motherly Olga becomes perma-
a house so divided long endure?                                                                     the comedy of self-delusion”.
                                                  nent headmistress, she takes Anfisa to live
    Read Conn Hallinan at dispatchesfromth        with her in her apartment.                           It’s life, folks. He is able to manipulate                                                                             themes of denial and hope within lives of
                                                     Kulygin, Masha’s much older husband
love and work. Realism-- if you need to put      Marin Av. Free. Brown Bag Speaker’s Fo-            (IHSS) -- a major target for Sacramento bud-
a genre name to it                               rum: Ella Thorp Ellis, author of Dune Child.       get cutters -- 49 % speak a language other
   xxxx                                          (510) 526-3720 x16.                                than English at home. [New America Media,
   I attended a performance of the West             Monday, May 2 6 PM Central Berkeley             Commentary, Katharine Hsiao and Anna
Coast premiere of Three Sisters.Matinees         Public Library. Free. Evening Computer             Rich, Posted: April 11, 2011.]
at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre, the           Class. (510)981-6100. (Also Monday eve-               A legislative report by the Senate Office
award-winning nonprofit regional theater in      nings, May 9, 16, 23)                              of Oversight and Outcomes, released on
downtown Berkeley, attract senior citizens--        Wednesday, May 412 noon – 1 PM. Al-             April 21, 2011, suggests that California is
the volunteer ushers are helpful, and there      bany Branch, Alameda County Library, 1247          putting its elderly population at risk of theft
are no-charge, assisted listening devices        Marin Av. Free. 1-on-1 Computer half-hour          and abuse because the state does not regulate
available. Senior Rush provides $10.00 seats     computer tutoring, registration required:          in-home caregivers. It found that California
an hour before the show.                         (510) 526-3720 x 16. (Also on Wednesdays,          is one of a handful of states that does not
   Chekhov wrote Three Sisters for a prosce-     May 11, 18, 25)                                    regulate in-home care agencies. Few people
nium theater, in which the audience directly        Wednesday, May 412 noon. Central                even know they have a right to request a
faces a stage that is typically raised several   Berkeley Public Library. Free. Playreaders.        background check on a potential caregiver.
feet above front row audience level. This        (510)981-6100. (Also Wednesdays, May 11,           The report urges the state to let clients check
production is designed for viewing on the        18, 25)                                            on past convictions and create a registry that
Berkeley Rep’s Thrust stage three sides and                                                         would allow clients to find caregivers who
                                                    Thursday, May 510 AM. Central Berke-
providing space for the cast to disperse.                                                           have been screened. It also recommends a
                                                 ley Public Library. Free. Computer for
                                                                                                    public awareness campaign to let the elderly
   Originally produced in four acts, Sarah       Beginners. (510)981-6100. (Also Thursdays,
                                                                                                    know they are entitled to a state Department
Ruhl’s translation is three not-at-all tedious   May 10, 19, 26)
                                                                                                    of Justice background check when they are
hours, with one break. Her new version,             Thursday, May 51:30-3 PM. Albany                thinking of hiring a caregiver.
directed by Les Waters (remember their In        Branch, Alameda County Library, 1247
the Next Room, Or The Vibrator Play?), is at                                                           The Associated Press reports that on April
                                                 Marin Av. Free. Consumer Fraud: Scams
the Berkeley Rep through Sunday, May 22,                                                            14, 2011 the world’s oldest man died, at
                                                 Targeting Seniors. (510) 526-3720 x16.
2011.It is based on a literal translation by                                                        age 114. Walter Breuning lived in a Great
                                                    Saturday, May 7 2 PM. Central Berkeley          Falls, Montana retirement home and died of
Elise Thoron, with Natalya Paramonova and        Public Library. Free. Local Places…Sacred
Kristin Johnsen-Neshati. Ruhl has earned                                                            undisclosed natural causes in a hospital. His
                                                 Spaces presents “Berkeley Partners for             secret to a long life: embrace change, eat 2
many honors including a MacArthur Fel-           Parks,” a talk and slide show by the Berke-
lowship and two Pulitzer Prize nominations.                                                         meals a day, work as long as you can, help
                                                 ley Path Wanderers. Information and to             others, never be afraid to die.
Her plays have been performed around the         confirm no charge: (510)981-6100.
world in numerous languages. Waters is the                                                             Drugging of California nursing home resi-
                                                    Wednesday, August 10, 2011, 10 A.M.-            dents is at an all-time high. California Advo-
associate artistic director of Berkeley Rep.
                                                 2 P.M. 10th Healthy Aging Fair. Largest            cates for Nursing Home Reform (CANHR)’s
In the last 5 years, his productions have
                                                 annual free health screening event for older       campaign to Stop Chemical Restraints in
ranked among the year’s best in The New
                                                 adults in Alameda County. More information         Nursing Homes has a petition to the Gov-
Yorker, New York Times, Time Magazine and
                                                 at                             ernor. You can sign it online: www.canhr.
USA Today.
                                                    By March 1, 2013: If you receive Social         org/stop-drugging/. About 25,000 California
   If you are unable to attend this real
                                                 Security or SSI benefits by paper checks,          nursing home residents are currently given
theater, you can borrow from the Library
                                                 you must switch to electronic payments.            antipsychotic drugs that greatly increase
the dvd of the National Theatre Company
                                                 Details at                       their risk of death.
of England’s Three Sisters motion picture,
originally released in 1970 and a literal           The Digital Inclusion Community Service            Vermontis weighing a bill to legalize
version of Olivier’s stage version. The cast     Initiative is a free Internet and email training   physician-assisted suicide. Terrence Youk,
includes Alan Bates (1934-2003) as Col.          program designed for older learners at 7           brother of a Michigan man whose 1998
Vershinin, Derek Jacobi (born 1938) as           locations in Oakland and Berkeley. Further         euthanasia death ultimately sent Dr. Jack
Andrei, Laurence Olivier (1907-1989) as Dr.      information (510)238-4920 or your senior           Kevorkian to prison, believes Kevorkian
Chebutikin, and Joan Plowright (born 1929)       center.                                            was providing a service, not committing a
as Masha. Plot keywords assigned to it by           Kelly Wallace, Manager of Berkeley’s            crime. He supports a “death with dignity”
the International Movie Database are feeling     Aging Services, will be conducting town            bill before the Legislature, says people
old and dissatisfaction.                         hall meetings in April for all seniors and         should have the option. The Vermont bill
   xxxx                                          is “always available to answer questions           does not contemplate euthanasia, but, rather,
                                                 or provide clarification.” (510) 981-5178.         physician-assisted suicide. It would let
    NEWS and DATES (Best to phone
                                                 [April 20,2011 Tri-Center Nugget, page 3]          doctors prescribe a lethal dose of pills for
to confirm): Friday, April 29, noon, free
                                                    California’s budget crisis is threatening to    patients deemed mentally competent and
admission. UC,B Dept, of Music. (510) 642-
                                                 decimate crucial health and social services        have been diagnosed with less than 6 months
4864. Chamber Orchestra. Hoh Chen, con-
                                                 for everyone, but the people who would be          to live. The patient would then administer
ductor. Igor Stravinsky: L’Histoire du Soldat
                                                 most harmed by the proposed cuts are likely        the drugs to himself or herself. [“Vermont
(The Soldier’s Tale) With original choreog-
                                                 to be seniors and people with disabilities.        man has unique perspective on lawmakers’
raphy by artistic director Claire Calalo, and
                                                 Data obtained by the National Senior Citi-         end-of-life debate; brother was Kevorkian
dancers from the UC,B community.
                                                 zens Law Center show that among recipients         patient,” byJohn Curran. Associated Press.
   Monday, May 212:30 PM Albany                                                                     April 17, 2011]
                                                 of the state’s In-Home Supportive Services
Branch, Alameda County Library, 1247
  Reminder: See http://berkeleycouncil-                                                       Southside when Mary Adams talked a real-, and watch Council!                                                                 tor into driving her and her visiting mother-
   Helen Rippier Wheeler can be reached at                                                    in-law for an outing in the Berkeley hills, Please, no email                                                       ostensibly to look at property. “The hills
attachments or phone calls.                                                                   were brown and bare,” wrote her daughter,
                                                                                              Cornelia Lonnberg, 63 years later. “There
East Bay: Then and Now:                                                                       were no houses to the north to be seen, and
                                                                                              my mother fell immediately in love with the
BAHA Spring House Tour                                                                        area. Needless to say, three lots were bought
Will Explore Picturesque                                                                      on the spot.”
Villas in Arlington Heights                                                                      Just before Christmas 1915, John Spring
                                                                                              left his wife for a younger woman and
By Daniella Thompson                                                 Daniella Thompson
                                                                                              moved away from Berkeley. The Spring
Wed Apr 27 16:49:00 -0700 2011               The Adams house, built by Water H. Ratcliff
                                                                                              estate was sold in late 1917 to the educator
                                             in 1913.
                                                                                              and mathematician Cora L. Williams, who
                                                The residential neighborhood gracing the      established in it her Institute of Creative De-
                                             hills east of Arlington Avenue and above the     velopment (later Williams College), a tony
                                             Spring mansion is one of Berkeley’s most         elementary and secondary school known
                                             scenic early 20th-century garden suburbs.        for its focus on languages, poetry, music,
                                             Tree-shaded streets are lined with pictur-       and literature, along with interpretive dance
                                             esque period-revival houses reminiscent of       inspired by Isadora Duncan.
                                             Italian villas, Norman country houses, Tudor        The Adams children attended the William
                                             manors, and beguiling “storybook” cottages.      Institute, and their mother was engaged to
                                                Beginning in 1909, John Hopkins Spring,       teach various subjects, including history,
                                             owner and developer of most of what be-          English, Latin, and geography. For her
                                             came Albany and North Berkeley, subdivid-        first class in ancient history, Mary Adams
                                             ed a succession of tracts, the first of which    focused on Egypt. She enlisted the help of
                        Daniella Thompson    was Thousand Oaks, followed by Arlington         Bernard Maybeck, who came to class and
The Spring Mansion will be open on BAHA’s    Villa Sites (1910), Arlington Heights (1911),    assisted the children in making models of
Spring House Tour.                           Arlington Oaks (1912), and Thousand Oaks         early Egyptian buildings. “We made our
                                             Heights (1912). All these tracts were laid out   own bricks for these huts out of grass and
                                             by landscape engineer Mark Daniels, who          mud and used modeling clay in making the
                                             worked in partnership with Vance Craig-          pyramids,” wrote Cornelia Lonnberg. “Mr.
                                             miles Osmont, an expert in the volcanic rock     Maybeck was very helpful also when we
                                             so abundant in this area.                        made enormous posters of the Great Sphinx
                                                Like Spring’s other subdivisions, Arling-     of Giza, the sun god Ra, and the god Osiris,
                                             ton Heights boasts quiet, sylvan streets that    drawing them first, coloring them, and hang-
                                             undulate with the hills, sweeping marine         ing them at the top of the red plush carpeted
                                             vistas, generous lots, and secluded walking      stairway for the whole school to see.”
                                             paths that used to provide easy access to           One of Prof. Adams’ closest friends was
                                             streetcar lines, commuter trains, and ferries.   Prof. Jacob Loewenberg, his colleague from
                                             Early residents of the neighborhood enjoyed      the U.C. philosophy department and later
                               Sidney Webb   a bucolic lifestyle within a 30-minute ride to   his next-door neighbor. Jack Loewenberg
Prof. George P. Adams and his family at      San Francisco.                                   was famous for having no sense of direction.
home on Santa Barbara                           Although John Spring began construction       When Mary Adams invited him to dinner for
Road.                                        on his own mansion in 1912, World War I          the first time, he paid no attention to the ex-
                                             delayed the full development of his tracts.      plicit directions she provided on the phone.
                                             Most of the lots in the Arlington subdivi-       Upon arrival, Loewenberg reported that he
                                             sions remained vacant until the 1920s, a         had taken the Euclid Avenue car to the end
                                             boom decade in Berkeley, when the city’s         of the line, whereupon he walked fifteen
                                             population ballooned from 56,000 to 83,000.      minutes up Grizzly Peak Blvd., eventu-
                                             Much of that growth took place in hilly          ally passing Prof. Calhoun’s house (George
                                             areas such as this one, which had streets and    Calhoun of the U.C. Greek department lived
                                             transportation lines ready for new home-         at 1056 Euclid Avenue). Calhoun was work-
                                             builders.                                        ing in his garden, and Loewenberg asked
                                                One of the few early houses built in the      him how to get to the Adams house. Fifteen
                                             area was the residence of philosophy profes-     minutes later, Loewenberg passed Calhoun’s
                                             sor George Plimpton Adams. Built in 1913         house again, and the latter told him that he
                                             at 745 Santa Barbara Road, the redwood           spent most of his time directing lost meta-
                     courtesy Adams family                                                    physicians to the Adams house.
                                             house was designed by Walter H. Ratcliff.
Rear view of the Adams house in its early
                                                The Adams family was living on the               Clad in barn shakes, the Adams house is a
singular Arts & Crafts presence in its neigh-   Hutton’s vireo at a suet feeder.                  Audubon to Xantus, or Ernest Choate’s Dic-
borhood. Most ofArlington Heights reflects                                                        tionary of American Bird Names, or Edward
the taste of the 1920s, favoring the various                                                      Gruson’s Words for Birds —not even dates
romantic styles known collectively as Period                                                      of birth and death. Which allowed me to
Revival. Here you will find Mediterranean                                                         speculate: “Hutton may have been aban-
houses with red tile roofs and stucco walls                                                       doned bird-hunting for gold-hunting; he may
alongside half-timbered and turreted English                                                      have returned east in time to be killed in the
and French country houses or Italian villas.                                                      Civil War; he may have disappeared into
  The picturesque houses of Arlington                                                             Mexico, like Ambrose Bierce. It’s anyone’s
Heights were designed by local architects,                                                        guess.”
from Maybeck and Ratcliff to a younger                                                               Last Saturday, working my way up Valen-
generation of U.C. graduates, including                                                           cia Street in the Mission after a book event
Edwin Lewis Snyder, Henry Gutterson, John                                                         at Flora Grubb Gardens and a catfish po’-
Hudson Thomas, Roland Stringham, and the                                                          boy at the Hard Knox Café, I found a used
brothers Sidney and Noble Newsom (Noble                                                           copy of Whose Bird? by Bo Boelens and Mi-
was John Spring’s son-in-law). Designer-                                                          chael Watkins at Dog-Eared Books: another
builders such as Joseph M. Walker,Walter                                                          biographical dictionary of people who have
W. Dixon and Richard K. Schmidt also left                                                         had birds named for them, this one covering
their mark with fanciful designs.                                                                 not just North America but the entire world.
  Ten Arlington Heights houses, among                                                             That included the Adelie of the penguin,
them the Spring Mansion, the Adams house,                                                         the Zenaida of the dove, and the infamous
and two houses designed by Maybeck, will                                                          Colonel Meinertzhagen, spy, specimen thief,
be open on Sunday, May 8, during BAHA’s                  Baltimore Architecture Foundation        and probable murderer, of the snowfinch and
Spring House Tour. The tour will be pre-        William R. Hutton: not so obscure after all.      warbler. Bought it, of course. That night,
ceded by a lecture on Storybook Style, to                                                         just on principle, I looked up Hutton, and the
take place at the Hillside Club on May 5 at                                                       mystery was solved.
                                                   Close to five years ago, I wrote a piece for
7:30 pm.                                        the Planet about an obscure native California        According to Boelens and Watkins,
  BAHA’s House Tour, “Picturesque Vil-          bird, the Hutton’s vireo. It’s a small green-     William Rich Hutton (1826-1901), born in
las of Arlington Heights,” will take place      ish thing, often mistaken for a ruby-crowned      Washington, was an artist, surveyor, and
on Sunday, May 8, from 1 to 5 pm. The           kinglet; the accompanying photo shows the         civil engineer. He went out to California in
tour-day ticket booth will open at noon         vireo’s diagnostic broken eye-ring. grayish       1847 (another source says 1846) to clerk for
at the Spring Mansion, 1960 San Antonio         legs and feet, and stronger beak. Unlike our      his uncle, who was paymaster for the First
Road. For further information and ad-           other vireos— the migratory Cassin’s, war-        New York Volunteers in the Mexican War.
vance tour and lecture tickets, visit http://   bling, and Bell’s—Hutton’s vireos appear          Two years later, then-Lieutenant Edward                           to be year-round residents. They frequent         Ord (as in Fort Ord) tapped him for a state-
   Daniella Thompson publishes berkeley-        oak woods, build their nests with hanging         wide survey, which seems to have allowed for the Berkeley Architectural     lichens, and commonly join mixed-species          ample spare time for sketching landscapes
Heritage Association (BAHA).                    foraging flocks in winter. Much of the spe-       and collecting specimens.
  [                                             cies’ life history is undocumented.                  Far from wandering off into Mexico, Hut-
                                                   At the time, all I could dig up about the      ton returned to Washington in 1853, married
Wild Neighbors: Apologies to                    eponymous William Hutton was that he had          into the Clopper family, and devoted the
William Rich Hutton                             collected the type specimen of the vireo          rest of his career to engineering, some-
                                                                                                  how avoiding the Civil War. His projects
By Joe Eaton                                       near Monterey in 1847 and sent it to
                                                                                                  included the Washington Aqueduct, the
Tue Apr 26 09:56:00 -0700 2011                  Washington, DC where it was formally
                                                                                                  Washington Bridge over the Hudson, and the
                                                described by the ornithologist John Cas-
                                                                                                  Hudson River Tunnel. A biographical sketch
                                                sin. (Cassin got his own vireo, along with
                                                                                                  on the Baltimore Architecture Foundation’s
                                                a finch, a kingbird, and an auklet.) Cassin
                                                                                                  web site (
                                                seems to have been lobbied by the Smith-
                                                                                                  phies/william-rich-hutton) also mentions his
                                                sonian’s Spencer Fullerton Baird (who has
                                                                                                  work on the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal,
                                                a sparrow and a sandpiper) to name the
                                                                                                  the Western Maryland Railroad, and the Ka-
                                                new bird after Hutton. Cassin groused a bit;
                                                                                                  nawha Canal, for which he designed the lock
                                                “This kind of thing is bad enough at best,
                                                                                                  system. When he learned that Cassin had
                                                but to name a bird after a person utterly
                                                                                                  named the vireo in his honor, he was more
                                                unknown is worse than that,” he wrote to
                                                                                                  embarrassed that anything else. “It goes
                                                Baird. But he went along in the end.
                                                                                                  against my principles to name after individu-
                                                   According to the references I had on hand,     als unless for important scientific service,”
                                                that was about the last anyone heard of Hut-      he wrote to a relative.
                                                ton. Cassin and Baird mentioned that he was
                                                                                                     Hutton was not at all obscure, then. It
                                                somewhere near San Diego in 1851. Then
                                                                                                  was just that no one had ever connected the
                                                the trail went cold. There was nothing else in
                                                                                                  young bird collector with the distinguished
   Minette Layne (via Wikimedia Commons)        Barbara and Richard Mearns’ authoritative
engineer. My hat is off to Boelens (AKA the        prison-like asylums. Or, they became the (Sample of the Marquez
Fat Birder) and Watkins for assembling the         town idiot, or the town drunk. My wife, who       piece available on the website)
pieces.                                            has traveled to Kenya, has seen for herself          ►Martin McDonagh’s darkly comic plays
                                                   the untreated mentally ill. She says they         have provoked both controversy and delight
On Mental Illness:                                 wander around aimlessly, are very thin, and       here. Berkeley Rep alone has produced two:
                                                   can barely, if at all, survive.                   Pillow Man and The Lieutenant of Inish-
Responding to the Anti-                               Concerning a statistical study proving the     more.
Psychiatry Movement                                theories of the anti-psychiatry movement,            Now CalPerformances is bringing back
                                                   statistics can be deceptive depending on how      Druid, the remarkable theater company from
By Jack Bragen
                                                   the data is gathered and how it is processed.     the west of Ireland, whose productions of
Tue Apr 26 10:26:00 -0700 2011
                                                   Multiple conclusions can be drawn from            J. M.Synge’s Playboy of the Western World
   A man wrote in claiming that I am doing         a given set of statistics. Untreated mental       and Shadow of the Glen, and Enda Walsh’s
a disservice with my column because I am           illness, perhaps not in every case, but much      The Walworth Farce stand at the top of
promoting psychiatry, which he claims is a         of the time, will continue to worsen, causing     what’s been seen onstage here in recent
fraud.                                             the inflicted person to suffer astronomically.    years, to stage McDonagh’s The Cripple of
   I get the point that many people who have          Concerning the mental health treatment         Inishmaan, directed by Druid founder Garry
seen my column completely disagree with            system being fraught with abuses, the anti-       Hynes, whose staging of Playboy was such a
the practices and theories of psychiatry. I am     psychiatry movement is right on. Concern-         remarkable event.
not a psychiatrist. I have not always believed     ing there being no need for it because these         McDonagh’s play deals with the eccentric
that I require medication. In my thirty years      illnesses don’t truly exist, this is not accu-    ultra-provincials of the Aran Islands when a
as a mental health consumer, I have seen           rate.                                             movie crew led by Robert Flaherty (Nanook
some of the abuses perpetrated by the mental          Asserting that mental illnesses don’t really   of the North) comes from America to film
health treatment system.                           exist is like saying that the Apollo Lunar        a documentary, Man of Aran, on the next
   Being presumed and treated as incompe-          Landings never took place. You can write          island over. The company has previously
tent, as less of a person, as a less intelligent   as many books on the subject as you want,         worked directly with McDonagh. True inter-
person, and as a non-person are somewhat           and you can argue the point until blue in the     national theater of the highest caliber.
subtler abuses that continue to happen to us       face. I will still believe the Lunar Landings        Nightly, 8 p. m. Wednesday, May 4
to this day. Many psychiatrists continue to        took place, and mental illness exists. Every-     through Saturday, May 14 (excepting Mon-
prescribe electro convulsive therapy. While        one else is entitled to their own opinion.        day, May 9), with Saturday matinees at 2,
it may provide relief for some, for others it         Readers are welcome, as always to contact      Sunday May 8 at 3, at Zellerbach Playhouse
causes terror and partial amnesia.                 me at with your             on the UC campus, Bancroft Way and Dana.
   I am familiar with the abuse that happens       stories or comments.                              $68. 642-9988;
to psychiatric patients. I would rather not
describe my experiences in detail. I tolerate
the mental health treatment system in spite        Arts & Entertainment
of its many instances of unfairness because
I have a disease that requires treatment; and
I cannot afford to get this treatment on my        Around & About in the
terms—I am not a wealthy movie star. Many          Performing Arts
in the anti-psychiatry movement apparently
believe that the human brain will auto-            By Ken Bullock
matically fix its own problems through the         Tue Apr 26 20:41:00 -0700 2011
natural regulatory mechanisms that Mother             Music: Quinteto Latino at the Berkeley
Nature provided. They believe that inter-          City Club
vening on an episode of mental illness with           Theater: Ireland’s Druid performs Martin
medication only prevents this restoration          McDonagh’s The Cripple of Inishmaan at
from naturally occurring, and actually wors-       Zellerbach Playhouse
ens the problem. This argument seems to be
                                                      ►Berkeley Chamber Performances will
the most important one in the anti psychiatry
                                                   present Quinteto Latino--Diane Grubbe,
movement. Furthermore, there is the claim
                                                   flute; Kyle Bruckmann, oboe; Leslie
that in third world countries, where psychi-
                                                   Tagorda, clarinet; Armando Castellano,
atric treatment is unavailable, people don’t
                                                   French horn; Shawn Jones, basson--in an
get mental illness.
                                                   evening of Mexican music by Carlos Chavez
   I have also heard that in India, before         (Soli no. 2), Mario Lavista (Cincos danzas
that country became modernized, catatonic          breves) Arturo Maquez (Danza de Medio-
people were often worshiped as enlightened         dia), and a traditional piece (Son de la Bruja,
beings. If so, it would dispute the idea that      arranged by Jose Luis Hurtado) on the eve
there are no mentally ill people outside the       of Cinco de Mayo, 8 p. m. Tuesday May 3 at
reach of psychiatry. Prior to the invention of     the Berkeley City Club, 2315 Durant. $25;
Thorazine and other medications, mentally          high school students free; post-high school
ill people were often kept chained up in           students, $12.50. 525-5211; berkeleycham-
Becky O’Malley: Hints at Racism in Berkeley Library Demolition Dispute Must End Now
Steven Finacom: City Council Moves Branch Library Demolitions Forward, Sets Hearings
Steven Finacom: Berkeley Library Demo Draws Dozens In Support
Ted Friedman: First Protest Against Sitting Prohibition Proposal Pronounced a Success by Organizers
Pablo Paredes: BUSD To Consider Dumping All Pre-K Extended Day Programs--
       Goodbye 2020 Vision to Close Achievement Gap! (Partisan Position)
Ted Friedman: Peace-War Melodrama Debuts in Berkeley’s People’s Park 42nd Anniversary Entertainment;
       Easter and Weather Attack Teley Street Fest
Gar Smith / Environmentalists Against War: Local Protesters Pay Big Bucks to Disrupt Obama’s Fund-raiser
Steven Finacom: May 4 Lawson Lecture To Highlight Earthquake Issues
From the Office of Assemblyman Sandre Swanson: AB 410(Equal Access to Public Information for the Blind)
       Passes the Assembly Business and Professions Committee
Steven Finacom, Special to the Planet: Spring Party Brightens Willard Park at Easter
Steven Finacom, Special to the Planet: MEMORIALS MARK WEEK AT UC BERKELEY
Gale Garcia: The Berkeley Times, Just Another Arm of the Machine
Blane Beckwith: A Missing, but Significant Piece of the Branch Library Renovation Debate.
Jean Damu: The Coup in Cote d’Ivoire
Akio Tanaka, KPFA LSB member: Time for the KPFA Community to Come Together
Ove Ofteness: General Welfare (Verse)
Letters to the Editor
Bob Burnett: The Public Eye: The Death of Bipartisanship
Conn Hallinan: Dispatches From The Edge: Europe’s Crisis & The Pain In Spain
Helen Rippier Wheeler: Senior Power:
       “Try to reason about love, and you will lose your reason,” wrote Russian playwright Anton Pavlovich
       Chekhov (1860-1904).
Daniella Thompson: East Bay: Then and Now:
       BAHA Spring House Tour Will Explore Picturesque Villas in Arlington Heights

Joe Eaton: Wild Neighbors: Apolo-
gies to William Rich Hutton
Jack Bragen: On Mental Illness:
Responding to the Anti-Psychiatry
Ken Bullock: Around & About in
the Performing Arts


To top