California’s prisons remain desperately overcrowded despite years of litigation and intervention by federal judges.
Overcrowding seriously compromises the health of prison inmates, and inadequate health care has led to the gratuitous suffering of untold numbers of felons. If the state is going to comply with federal requirements to reduce the prison population, it may well have to consider releasing some inmates early. Read More
The back-to-back bankruptcy filings of Stockton and San Bernardino, following Vallejo’s insolvency a few years earlier, have sparked finger-pointing about causes and speculation about whether more California cities may go under.
Those on the political right say the bankruptcies resulted from local politicians’ caving in to pressure from unions for higher pay and better pension and health benefits. Read More
Motorists should brace for significantly higher prices at the pump in the coming weeks as a result of Monday night’s fire at the Chevron oil refinery in Richmond.
Wholesale prices for fuel have already risen by 23 to 35 cents a gallon, a cost increase that will soon be passed on to consumers, said Cynthia Harris, a spokeswoman for AAA. She said it is too early to speculate about how much gas prices will increase, but the spike will be “significant.” Read More
You’re at the supermarket doing your grocery shopping. As you move up and down the aisles, you notice something different: new labels on several of your staple food items. Pasta, cereal, chips, sweet corn and yellow squash all now have a distinct marking that says either “genetically engineered” or “partially produced with genetic engineering.”
How might this change your food choices? Read More
Shark fin soup is an almost-tasteless delicacy that is more notable for its texture. But all across Asia and the Pacific Rim, Chinese consumers have historically viewed it as a mark of success and wealth. Read More
Twenty-two million dollars. That’s what it would have taken to keep 70 of California’s 278 public parks open this year. Instead, they were scheduled to be locked up and sealed off from the public. Only the extraordinary fundraising efforts of private donors have kept them open so far. Read More
A state ban on sales of foie gras that went into effect July 1 will remain in place for now while a lawsuit over the law’s constitutionality proceeds, a federal judge said. Read More
Now that ballot propositions for November’s election have been given names, the real campaigning can begin.
Already, a group of folks supporting Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax measure, Proposition 30, has filed to go after a competing tax proposal, Proposition 38, sponsored by Molly Munger, a civil-rights attorney. Anti-tax groups will go after both. Read More
On June 28, Stockton became the largest city in California to file for bankruptcy. And it will not be the last. Read More
The Bay Area is home to Silicon Valley, and some of the largest technology companies in the world are housed in and between the South Bay and San Francisco. There is also the cluster of biotech companies that reside in San Francisco and San Mateo County. The driving force behind these companies: innovation. Read More