U.S. must now cut off all aid to Israel
Israel's collective punishment of the civilian population of Gaza is a war crime. From air, sea and on the ground, Israel has bombed hospitals, schools, homes, mosques, power plants, U.N.-designated refugee shelters and even children playing soccer on the beach.
To date, more than 1,500 people have died and thousands more wounded, the vast majority civilians and hundreds of those children.
There is no safe place in Gaza to escape Israel's merciless assault. The U.S. is now resupplying Israel with armaments in violation of its own law, the Leahy Amendment to the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act, which states: "No assistance shall be furnished under the Act or the Arms Export Control Act to any unit of the security forces of a foreign country if the Secretary of State has credible evidence that such unit has committed a gross violation of human rights."
The U.S. must now comply with its own law and cut off aid to Israel until it ends its illegal occupation of Gaza and the West Bank.
Obama's choices of words not surprising
I recently saw President Barack Obama get choked up as he publicly sympathized with three terrorist mass murderers, whom he gently named as some folks whom we tortured (waterboarded uncomfortably).
But a while back, I heard Obama disparage millions of American folks, whom he did not call folks, but instead publicly used a slur of a sexual practice not nice enough to name here in a family paper.
And I learned that Obama's operative Lois Lerner from the IRS used her government email to refer to those same millions of American folks by a foul body part, which is also unfit to print here.
But recently I heard Obama tell Bill O'Reilly, about Lois Lerner and her disturbingly partisan shenanigans at the IRS, that there "is not a smidgen of corruption."
Well, I guess that is what I expect from a president who is sympathetic of terrorist folks, but who saves his nasty name-calling for the folks who reprehensibly dare to organize for smaller government.
Council made wrong vote on garbage deal
I am a proud, third-generation employee of Waste Management of Alameda County. It saddens me to see that Oakland City Council all but denies Oakland Scavenger/Waste Management's ties to the city of Oakland.
We started in Oakland. Oakland Scavenger was formed by Italian immigrants more than 100 years ago, and now, proudly, WMAC is a very diverse, multi-ethnic family.
Up until recent renovations, you could walk into our 98th Avenue office and see photos of generations of proud WMAC employees throughout the years. To hear the remarks denying our ties to Oakland was really offensive.
I am a proud Local 1546 Machinist Union member and container repairman. Every day I see containers that I repaired in the city and I think how great it is to help take care of this city and its residents, visitors and employees.
The council meeting voting to give the contract to CWS broke my heart. Why would the council choose an iffy company that makes false promises over a tried-and-true company?
I am all for giving at-risk youth a helping hand in training and job opportunities, but not at the cost of local union employees. I thought the Oakland City Council was all about the local unions.
Right to rely on true experts for project
Pretend you're about to have some serious surgery. Who would you trust, a surgeon with decades of operating experience or someone who may have read some medical books and looks stuff up on Wikipedia?
The Richmond City Council faced a similar dilemma when it came to the technical aspects of the Chevron modernization project. Should they trust the recommendations of the independent experts hired by the city, like Shari Libicki and David Hendrix? Libicki has a Ph.D. from Stanford in chemical engineering and over 25 years of experience in greenhouse gases and emissions calculations for CEQA. Hendrix has over 30 years of metallurgy expertise in the refining industry.
Or should the council trust the opposition's "technical experts" (Richmond Progressive Alliance and Citizens for a Better Environment) who don't have the formal training in engineering and have never worked in a refinery?
I say it would be wise to hand the scalpel to the experienced surgeon.