Pouring money into public education is an exercise in futility, particularly with the checkered history of the miseducation of teachers and students and the malpractice of teacher unions.
Indeed, the latest education-related political barbs being thrown by President Barack Obama at Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, accusing him of wanting to cut education funding, isa perfect example of Obama’s wasteful spending intended to keep the support of teacher unions. Read More
The only reason I watched the Little League World Series was the fact that Petaluma was playing.
I am not really a very good baseball fan, but on Tuesday, I was amazed at the Petaluma team. Read More
The political cartoon portraying conservatives and libertarians as insensitive and callous toward the poor is grossly mistaken (Today’s Cartoon, Pat Oliphant, Wednesday). Caring and compassion are good only when they are voluntary and individual. Voters and bureaucrats are spending someone else’s money. Public compassion is always compulsory and inefficient. Government agencies have spent zillions of dollars over the past decades to alleviate poverty; there is still no lack of poor people. Mostly what we get are well-paid poverty fighters with very, very generous pension packages. Read More
In response to the letter writer in support of Ross Mirkarimi’s reinstatement as sheriff (“Let Mirkarimi fulfill jail-system vision,” Letters, Monday), there is one main issue. Would applicants for law enforcement jobs or sheriff be considered if they had similar convictions on their records? The answer would be no. Read More
Your article on the Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (“Outside Lands hits high note,” Monday) stated in passing that there were “fewer than half the number of complaints about noise.” It remains to be seen whether that was because the concert’s noise pollution was actually lower, or whether Sunset and Richmond residents simply gave up trying to get organizers to actually deal with the noise pollution. Read More
Virtually no Proposition 63 money funds true early intervention programs, contrary to Patricia Ryan’s implied assertions (“Programs help catch mental illness early,” Opinion, Sunday). The soon-to-be-diagnosed will always be a tiny fraction of the 6 percent of the population who are seriously mentally ill. There is too much Prop. 63 prevention money for this small group. The only such program San Francisco funded last year screened 183 people. In contrast, millions went to programs such as Indian drumming for people with no mental health diagnoses. Read More
Justice was a lost concept in the Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi case (“Mirkarimi deserves another chance,” Wednesday). It seemed every week of this saga there was a new — never to be proven — accusation. On and on it went with no respect for the man who received more votes in November than Mayor Ed Lee did. There was a clear mandate by the voters to see Mirkarimi carry out his mission for a visionary jail system. While we wait for Mirkarimi to be reinstated, we are losing hope for the thousands of men, women, and youths languishing in our jails. Read More
“The supporters of Proposition 34 sympathize with the murderers. The victims are somewhat down on their priority scale,” said Michael Rushford, president of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation (“Death row may face demise,” Sunday).
For the past 34 years, Rushford and CJLF have fostered habitual hyper-vigilance in the name of crime victims. During those 34 years, they have tried to perfect an inherently flawed death penalty while California taxpayers have spent millions of dollars each year to execute a handful of murderers while nearly 50 percent of homicides go unsolved. Read More
It is quite saddening to see that the city attorney and the Election Department have decreased the traditional standards of reason when it comes to issues that may or may not be placed on the ballot (“Voters deserve apolitical details on Hetchy battle,” Monday). After all, it has been my pleasure to have placed nearly a dozen issues on the ballot over the years. Read More
As I pack for my annual exodus to the East Bay in order to avoid the environmentally destructive Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival imbroglio, I learn that two of my favorite events will no longer be held thanks to fee and cost increases spearheaded by our rapacious Recreation and Parks Department.
This year would have marked the 13th year of the always free Power To The Peaceful Festival, but they can no longer afford to keep it free and put it on. Unlike Outside Lands, this event has always catered to locals and has actively promoted local bands. Read More
As we pass Monday’s 67th anniversary of the U.S.’s dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, let us renew our commitment to work for peace in our world. More than 220,000 Japanese people were killed and gravely injured by the atomic bomb blasts in Hiroshima and later Nagasaki. Many others suffered cancers caused by the radiation fallout. Read More
Kayla Figard’s coverage of Proposition 37 highlights the gulf between Californians demanding the right to know what’s in our food and corporations desperate to keep the public in the dark (“Difficult choices in the produce aisle,” Sunday). Besides, PepsiCo, Monsanto and the rest of the pesticide industry have put defeating this initiative at the top of their agenda. Read More
As a former Bay Area resident, I read with interest your coverage of the Board of Supervisors’ decision to send a gross receipts tax to the November ballot in place of the existing 1.5 percent business payroll tax (“Business tax reform compromise set for ballot,” July, 31). No doubt the payroll tax harms hiring and business growth, but I must warn my former neighbors that replacing it with a gross receipts tax is exchanging a bad tax for a worse one. Read More
After reading your editorial (“Free Muni plan’s defeat a setback for youths, city,” Monday), I was somewhat confused. Is it accurate to say that someone who did not earn a benefit (and who therefore had no right to it) is calling shame on the Metropolitan Transportation Commission for saying “no”?
I suppose the next thing we’ll see is that those who are managing taxpayer funds will be labeled “greedy,” and those who demanded money they didn’t earn will be called “victims.” Personally, I think it should be the other way around. Read More
When the government creates gun-free zones, they become sites of massacres that gunmen look upon as safe havens (“Suspect’s notebook sent to psychiatrist,” Thursday). In Colorado, a package with a return address belonging to 24-year-old slaying suspect James Eagan Holmes’ home — an apartment booby-trapped with fire bombs — remained unopened for more than a week at a University of Colorado campus. Read More