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Hometown: Southern California
Current location: Orbiting
Member since: Tue Jun 7, 2011, 03:02 PM
Number of posts: 2,587

Journal Archives

LA earthquake: City councilmembers want to see if fracking is to blame

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Seismologists say they can't pin Monday's 4.4-magnitude earthquake in Los Angeles on any one fault, but rather on the buildup of stress associated with the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. Could "fracking" be blamed for the quake? That's what three Los Angeles City Council members want to find out.

Councilmen Paul Koretz, Mike Bonin and Bernard Parks filed a motion on Tuesday, calling for city staff to investigate whether oil and natural gas drilling methods helped trigger the quake.

City staff would work with the California Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources, or DOGGR, the U.S. Geological Survey and the South Coast Air Quality Management District to put together a report to see if there are any links between fracking and the earthquake.

The councilmembers say the quake's origin was located near areas where active oil extraction activities have been reported. Fracking involves injecting wells with a high-pressure solution to free up trapped natural gas and oil deposits.

Typical Minimum-Wage Earners Aren’t Poor, But They’re Not Quite Middle Class

This is an OP in GD ( http://www.democraticunderground.com/10024683618 ) from here 538 .

The article implies that the minimum wage should be for people who need it; not that workers earn it.

Here's the graph:

I think there is something wrong with the methodology employed. For example, household income was included, yet household size received no consideration. Methodology is not spelled out so I do not know how to refute this attack on raising the minimum raise.

edit to add graph

Venice Drum Circle Turns Violent; 2 Arrested

Two people were arrested and a police officer was injured after violence erupted when hundreds of people who had gathered for a drum circle on the Venice boardwalk were told to disperse Sunday night, authorities said.

Between 400 and 500 people had gathered during the evening as part of a weekly drum circle when police arrived, Munoz said.

Citing beach rules, officers attempted to break up the drum circle, according to Munoz.

One officer was treated for injuries he sustained after a bottle hit his leg, according to Munoz. Another bottle broke the window of a police vehicle, he said.

The crowd eventually dispersed, with the exception of one person who rushed the police line and another person who refused to move, according to Munoz.


California: State Democrats Call For Legalizing Marijuana For Adults

Los Angeles, CA: California Democrats have approved a plank in the party's platform calling for the legalization of marijuana.

State party delegates at the Democrats' three-day convention in Los Angeles gave near unanimous approval to language calling on the party to "support the legalization, regulation, and taxation of marijuana in a manner similar to that of tobacco or alcohol."

The party's adoption of the pro-legalization plank is at odds with statements made recently by Democrat Gov. Jerry Brown, who expressed reservations about regulating the adult use and sale of the plant. "If there's advertising and legitimacy, how many people can get stoned and still have a great state or a great nation?" Brown said on NBC's Meet the Press. ‘The world's pretty dangerous, very competitive. I think we need to stay alert, if not 24 hours a day, more than some of the potheads might be able to put together."

According to an October 2013 Tulchin Research poll, 65 percent of likely California voters - including 74 percent of Democrats - said that they would support a statewide ballot measure to legalize and regulate marijuana production and retail sales for adults.

State oversight may tame California pot shops

If this passes, patients may have difficulty finding a prescribing doctor (IMO).

SAN FRANCISCO -- Law and order may soon be coming to the Wild West of weed.

SB1262 is the brainchild of the California Police Chiefs Association and the League of California Cities, two politically influential groups that have stood in the way of previous efforts to legitimize pot growers and dispensaries by subjecting them to state control and taxation.

The bill co-sponsored by the league and the police chiefs' association would require the California Department of Public Health to license dispensaries and cultivation sites but only if they first had secured operating permits from local jurisdictions. The department also would develop "quality assurance" procedures for testing marijuana for bacteria, mold and nonorganic pesticides, which growers would be prohibited from using.

The legislation also imposes substantial new requirements on doctors. If passed, it would allow medical marijuana recommendations to be given only by either a patient's primary care doctor or a licensed specialist to whom the doctor has referred the patient. The doctor must have completed a certification course that covers substance abuse training.

Certified doctors also would have to keep detailed records and to report how many recommendations they give and why to the California Medical Board, which would audit those who issue more than 100 in a year.

Obama to preserve California federal lands

KEY LARGO, Fla -- President Barack Obama will expand the California Coastal National Monument to include the Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands, a White House official said Saturday.

Expected Tuesday, the action will permanently protect some 1,665 acres of federal lands on the Mendocino County coast in Northern California, just north of Point Arena.

It will expand a national monument created in 2000 by President Bill Clinton to include coastal bluffs and shelves, tide pools, onshore sand dunes, coastal prairies, riverbanks and the mouth and estuary of the Garcia River.

The area to be preserved is a significant economic engine for the local community, driving tourism and outdoor recreation. A report by the federal Bureau of Land Management estimated that outdoor recreation on public lands in California contributed nearly $900 million to the economy in 2012.

If Wright & Calderon expelled for felonies, Democrats lose supermajority

Democrats derail GOP attempt to expel state Sen. Roderick Wright

Wright, an Inglewood Democrat, is on a paid leave of absence and will be sentenced May 16 following his conviction on eight felony counts. The jury found Wright guilty of living outside his Inglewood district when he ran for -- and won -- his state seat in 2008 for the 25th Senate District.

Three Republicans -- Joel Anderson of Alpine, Steve Knight of Palmdale, and Andy Vidak of Hanford -- on Thursday introduced a resolution to have Wright kicked out of the Senate now. They don't think Wright should be on a leave that allows him to continue receiving his $95,291 annual salary.

State Senate President Darrell Steinberg called the expulsion attempt "political theater." He said they should be focusing on the state's drought issues instead of "a resolution that would make zero practical difference."

If Wright and Calderon leave the Legislature, Democrats would lose the supermajority that lets them act on any matter without Republican support.

Offshore Fracking Off California Coast Under Review, Drawing Calls For Increased Regulation

AP | By JASON DEAREN and ALICIA CHANG Posted: 08/03/2013

California coastal regulators said they were unaware until recently that offshore fracking was even occurring, and are now asking oil companies proposing new offshore drilling projects if they will be fracking.

Because the area of concern is located more than three miles off the state's shoreline, federal regulators have jurisdiction over these offshore exploration efforts. However, the state can reject a permit in federal waters if the work endangers water quality.

"It wasn't on our radar before, and now it is," said Alison Dettmer, a deputy director at the California Coastal Commission.

Most fracking efforts off California have yielded mixed results. The first time Venoco fracked offshore in the 1990s, it had limited success. Chevron's one try failed. Out of Nuevo Energy's nine attempts, only one was considered very successful, according to company and BSEE records.

California drought: Legislature passes $687 million plan

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KABC) -- Both houses of the California Legislature overwhelmingly approved of a $687 million drought-relief plan on Thursday.

The plan -- SB103 and SB104 -- is now headed to Gov. Jerry Brown, who had announced the plan in a press conference last week. The emergency measures will take effect immediately after Brown signs the legislation.

The legislation accelerates $549 million in infrastructure grants for local and regional water projects. It also includes $25 million in food assistance and $21 million in housing assistance for those hardest hit by the drought.

Food experts say the drought is already starting to hurt all Californians at the grocery store. Food prices could rise as much as 10-15 percent due to drought. The Fresno County Farm Bureau says 50 percent of Central Valley farmland isn't being used to grow anything because of the lack of rain. That region grows most of our country's food.

State Sen. Ronald Calderon [SD-30], brother indicted in corruption scandal

The U.S. attorney in Los Angeles on Friday painted a picture of government for sale as he announced that state Sen. Ron Calderon had been indicted on suspicion of taking roughly $100,000 in bribes, meals and trips in exchange for favorable legislation.

Calderon, a Montebello Democrat, who faces up to 395 years in prison, allegedly took kickbacks from former Long Beach hospital operator Michael Drobot, who perpetrated one of the largest healthcare fraud schemes in California history, U.S. Atty. Andre Birotte said Friday.

Drobot allegedly exploited state insurance law to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars from spinal surgeries.

Calderon and his relatives also took money from people they believed were connected to a Hollywood studio that in fact was an FBI front.

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