Sep 10

How to vote on California’s “global-warming law”

No on Proposition 23

“The ballot measure would suspend the global warming law until the state’s unemployment rate dropped below 5.5%, a level achieved only three times in the last three decades. Until now, the measure has been largely financed by two Texas-based companies, Valero Energy Corp. and Tesoro Corp…”

“The fight over a November ballot initiative to suspend California’s global warming law has escalated sharply with the Koch brothers, oil billionaires and “tea party” backers… the [million-dollar] contribution to the campaign for Proposition 23 came Thursday from … the Kochs’ company … has estimated annual revenues of $100 billion … controls about 4,000 miles of oil pipelines.”

Undoubtedly, in effort to prevent progress to energy-independence and profit margins from slipping. Heaven forbid they innovate.

Yes on AB 32

“California’s global warming law, known as AB 32, is designed to cut the state’s emission of greenhouse gases to 1990 levels by the end of this decade. A significant chunk of the reductions would come through regulations aimed at fostering alternative fuels and generating electricity from solar, wind and other alternative energy sources.”

[source la times]

Apr 10

Beware CA GOP Governor hopeful, Steve Poizner

Never have I heard such a blatant recount of a politician so out of touch with the common American. His book, entitled “Mount Pleasant” about his one-month teaching stint at an average middle-class public high school in San Jose, is full of exaggerations and misconceptions.

The latest episode of This American Life takes an act to investigate the book’s colorful descriptions and quite effectively establishes solid facts contrary to billionare Mr. Poizner’s published perspective. When confronted about the lies, including city & police statistics as well as quotations from those he worked with at the school, Poizner blindly sticks to his own account. He places blame on unmotivated kids and an imaginative neighborhood full of crime.

The only hopeful moment comes near the end of the TAL act in which Ira interviews the school teacher who oversaw Mr. Poizner’s class. This teacher says that inspite of Poizner’s inaccurate interpretation of the setting, he seemed to genuinely care about the kids future.

Even so, Steve’s unwillingness to concede even the slightest admittance that he may have gotten it wrong, is a frightening reflection of his inability to produce objective judgement. His narcissism is so thick it’s suffocating. He squirms and flakes off in his answers to Ira’s straight – are you sure you got it right – questions.

A person unable to concede mistakes and misuse facts to self-serving ends (to get elected) is not someone we want heading our State.

Feb 10

Pondering Petaluma

Sim City view

Sim City view

Having lived in this town for the majority of my life, I’ve watched it grow and change as I have.  In those many years, I’ve gained an acute understanding of it.  I’ve acknowledged its good qualities and complained – often – about its shortcomings.  But only recently, have I come to genuinely care about the place I call home.

Petaluma’s unique qualities are what make it worth caring about.  With my knowledge of its history and my interest in its present and future, I have begun to critically analyze its faults.  What better way to shape and improve the future of the community, than to be a part of it.

Whether this be, to physically participate in local politics or become a more outspoken, thought provoking critic, I’m undecided.  No longer will I be subject to the “don’t bitch when you do nothing” mantra.  Now when I analyze, it will be first and foremost, thoroughly digested here on FTTA.   And now for the obligatory P-Town debrief to introduce the multi-post kick off surrounding the this-town topic.

Petaluma is one of Sonoma County’s eldest subsidiaries.  And its history is one of the key traits that make the culture of Petaluma far more interesting than many bedroom communities like it.   Incorporated in 1858, blah blah blah, and utilized as scenery for many movies, the city has a rich past present and future.  Can’t wait to help guide the way.

Dec 09

Steel Horse in the Urban Countryside

Without the staunch support of my Steel Horse, upon which I rode this and many mornings like it, the trek to work would’ve been hell. Proof in the pudding; I’ve oft twittered my commuting misfortunes on the days I’ve chanced and choose to be imprisoned in my cage (i.e. car, granted, a generally ok incarceration.)

The short and sweet of this tale is that, I save time, money and incur less stress by playing the advanced version of the commuter game. It should really be no wonder that fellow bikers salute one another as it requires drive and courage to get to this level.

'08 V-Strom 650

'08 V-Strom 650

Each morning I ride, I must ensure that I depart early enough to value safety over the en-route time – a moronic concept but a truth nonetheless. It’s a treacherous trip as any (freeway) ride “horse back” is, but with the additional dangers inherent with traffic.

That traffic congestion consists of amass of cages, driven by people who consider the risk and/or the effort to ride too great. Naturally, that established logic rarely, if ever, occurs to that stated majority as I glide oh-so effortlessly past them. I speak of exploiting the “center lane”, that space between cars which is essentially uninhibited by cage congestion. Some admire and many curse the freedom riders in California embrace.

Typical Lane Split

Typical Lane Split

First, the good ones: I am particularly grateful to the cagers who utilize their turn signals. That split second is all but effortless when compared to the tremendous value added by the act. There are also those who shift to the other side of their lane, giving me a bit more space. Though whether it’s out of fear or courtesy is on a case by case basis. In any case, while I appreciate the sentiment, for the most part the move is largely unnecessary.

Occasionally, enough of them will see me and perform this act that I can’t help but feel like a nobleman amongst surfs. Like a King or an honorable knight riding high while the little surfs scurrying from out my path. Like oil floating atop water. Like Moses parting the red sea. Yeah, it can be that sweet.

Red Sea Parting

Red Sea Parting

Continue reading →