Page One

Berkeley and “The Graduate” Fifty Years After

Steven Finacom
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:20:00 PM
The Victorian house at 2400 Dana which served as Dustin Hoffman’s boarding house in “The Graduate”.

This week of Christmas, 2017, it’s fifty years since the premiere of the movie “The Graduate” on December 21, 1967. While film and cultural critics have been musing about the role of the movie in American society, I’ve been looking into its connections to Berkeley for the past several months. -more-



The Long History of the Berkeley Civic Center

Harvey Smith, Author, Berkeley and the New Deal
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:46:00 PM

Berkeley Civic Center as a concept goes back over a hundred years. However, it is also self-evident that a great city deserves a great civic center. -more-



Public Comment

Yemen Situation is Worse

Jagjit Singh
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 06:10:00 PM

The news from war-torn Yemen gets grimmer by the day. -more-


The Thriving Economy: Fact or Fiction

Harry Brill
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:50:00 PM

The press nationwide has been conveying the so called good news they received from the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). We learned that the economy is thriving and at full employment. Why? 228,000 jobs were created in November. According to the Federal Reserve, the nation is at full employment when the rate is at 5 percent. The November rate was even lower, at 4.1 percent. -more-


Sexual Assault is as American as Cherry Pie

Paula deJoie
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:42:00 PM

Kara Vaughn was the first person who ever told me she had been raped. It happened when she was about 14. She described being forcibly held down by one “friend” while another raped her. They took turns until they left her crumpled, inside and out.

I was a 17 year old freshman at UC Berkeley when I became friends with Kara.

She needed a place to stay. I was living with my grandmother and I talked her into letting Kara move in. We shared a room with twin beds, matching pink bedspreads covered with fuzzy little pink balls. -more-


Editorial

Should Berkeley Exclude Citizens from Land Use Decisions?

Becky O'Malley
Saturday December 09, 2017 - 11:23:00 AM

Do the residents of Berkeley’s District 8 know that their Councilmember Lori Droste is positioning herself as the Joan of Arc of unrestrained development density?

Last Tuesday Droste spearheaded the ill-conceived crusade by some Berkeley City Council members to prevent current residents from commenting on developers’ plans to build semi-affordable housing projects. The goal is to allow planning department staff to approve projects which claim a high percentage (~50%) of affordable units without the approval of those annoying citizens’ land use regulatory commissions (not the Zoning Adjustment Board, nor its Design Review Committee, nor the Landmark Preservation Commission). Eager sponsors (Droste, Bartlett, Arreguin, Worthington) characterized this truncated process as “ministerial” rather than “discretionary” approval. They proudly claimed that there would be no opportunity for citizens to appeal such decisions if their proposal should become Berkeley zoning law. Swell.

District 6 Councilmember Sophie Hahn (who is among other achievements a graduate of Stanford Law School though she no longer practices law) tried patiently and even eloquently to explain the many, many legal problems with a plan like this, but she got exactly nowhere with the gung-ho proponents.

Instead, they spoke in glowing terms of their desire to create a bulletproof set of simple-minded standards which could be easily enforced by staff without messy citizen input which would magically produce affordable housing very very soon. This, remember, is the same Berkeley Planning Department staff which permitted the approval and construction of the Library Gardens apartments with resulting fatalities. -more-


The Editor's Back Fence

What's new in this issue?

Sunday December 17, 2017 - 10:56:00 PM

If you'd like to make sure that you don't miss anything, you can add your name to our subscriber list. Just email subscribe@berkeleydailyplanet.com and we'll email you links to whatever's been posted in the last seven days. We never share our subscriber list with anyone. -more-


Columns

THE PUBLIC EYE: Trump Should Resign

Bob Burnett
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 06:05:00 PM

The news story of the year has not been Donald Trump; it has been the "#MeToo" movement, where brave women denounced sexual assault and harassment. This movement brought down Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore. Now it has prompted new demands for Trump's resignation. -more-


SQUEAKY WHEEL: The Sexism Spectrum

Toni Mester
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:33:00 PM

Why do women have to be groped or raped before male dominance is recognized as systematic oppression? Because sexism spans a wide spectrum of behaviors, many of which are commonly tolerated as human nature or accepted cultural norms. As a result, many men don’t recognize or understand their own aggression, rationalize and defend misconduct, and let other men get away with it. Too often women are shamed into accepting or excusing aggressions, micro or worse. Think Melania Trump and “locker room talk”. -more-


ON MENTAL HEALTH: Harassment Of Disabled Under New State Program

Jack Bragen
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:39:00 PM

Recent California legislation, Assembly Bill 1568, has created a pilot program called "Whole Person Care," a state funded program administered by 19 counties. This project is directed at Medi-Cal recipients, and provides voluntary case management (medical case management and "social" case management). It is intended to reduce the usage of high cost services by those in the Medi-Cal population that a database has determined are "high risk" individuals. The new law provides for coordination between agencies. It provides for tracking of people in a database. -more-


ECLECTIC RANT: Sexual Harassment -- The Weinstein Effect

Ralph E. Stone
Sunday December 17, 2017 - 12:52:00 PM

Ever since more than eighty women accused movie producer Harvey Weinstein of engaging in sexual harassment, sexual assault, or rape, giving rise to the #MeToo Movement, there seems to be daily reports of new accusations of sexual harassment against prominent men. The #MeToo Movement even made the cover of Time Magazine. -more-


Arts & Events

Mark Morris Revives THE HARD NUT

Reviewed by James Roy MacBean
Saturday December 16, 2017 - 05:30:00 PM

On Friday evening, December 15, Mark Morris Dance Group opened their perennial Christmas favorite, The Hard Nut, for an extensive run through December 24 at Berkeley’s Zellerbach Hall. It’s been more than twenty-five years since Mark Morris premiered The Hard Nut, which of course is his quirky take on Tchaikovsky’s beloved ballet The Nutcracker. Based on the story The Nutcracker and the Mouseking by E.T.A. Hoffman, this charming tale involves the Christmas Eve dreams of a young girl, often named Clara, although in Mark Morris’s The Hard Nut she is called Marie. -more-


Events

The Berkeley Activist's Calendar, December 17-24

Kelly Hammargren, Sustainable Berkeley Coalition
Sunday December 17, 2017 - 11:44:00 AM

December 19 is the last Berkeley City Council meeting before the winter recess. Jammed into the 498 page Agenda Packet is the City Manager’s report on the referral process item 36. This is the list of the work assigned by the City Council to the City Manager. While quite a number of referrals are in process or completed, there are referrals from 2014 that are still lingering unfinished. Also in the packet is the Police Review Commission’s (PRC) recommendation to repeal the September 12, 2017 pepper spray ordinance item 40 a. The City Manager rejects the PRC recommendation in 40 b. recommending the ordinance remain in place. Justification for retaining the policy includes the statement, “On August 27, hundreds [emphasis added] of masked extremists arrived on the scene of an otherwise peaceful event in Civic Center Park, accompanied by a flatbed truck loaded with weapons and shields…” -more-


Back Stories

Opinion

The Editor's Back Fence

What's new in this issue? 12-17-2017

Public Comment

Yemen Situation is Worse Jagjit Singh 12-16-2017

The Thriving Economy: Fact or Fiction Harry Brill 12-16-2017

Sexual Assault is as American as Cherry Pie Paula deJoie 12-16-2017

News

Berkeley and “The Graduate” Fifty Years After Steven Finacom 12-16-2017

The Long History of the Berkeley Civic Center Harvey Smith, Author, Berkeley and the New Deal 12-16-2017

Columns

THE PUBLIC EYE: Trump Should Resign Bob Burnett 12-16-2017

SQUEAKY WHEEL: The Sexism Spectrum Toni Mester 12-16-2017

ON MENTAL HEALTH: Harassment Of Disabled Under New State Program Jack Bragen 12-16-2017

ECLECTIC RANT: Sexual Harassment -- The Weinstein Effect Ralph E. Stone 12-17-2017

Arts & Events

Mark Morris Revives THE HARD NUT Reviewed by James Roy MacBean 12-16-2017

The Berkeley Activist's Calendar, December 17-24 Kelly Hammargren, Sustainable Berkeley Coalition 12-17-2017