Archive for the ‘Duh’ Category

Leading by Example

August 31, 2011

Exemplary generosity.

Some people give back to their community. Then there’s Fresno County School Superintendent Larry Powell, who’s really giving back. As in $800,000 — what would have been his compensation for the next three years. Until his term expires in 2015, Powell will run 325 schools and 35 school districts with 195,000 students, all for less than a starting California teacher earns. “How much do we need to keep accumulating?” asks Powell, 63. “There’s no reason for me to keep stockpiling money.”

I certainly recognize that no two circumstances are alike, nor this is a clarion call for every school superintendent across the country to give up their paychecks. But it does put things in rather stark perspective when you consider that AUSD’s Superintendent was just awarded a pay hike. Whilst the actual increase in her salary may not amount to much in the grand scheme of things, you have to be really tone deaf to ask for and accept a pay hike under the present circumstances.

Also interesting to see that Powell is responsible for 35 school districts with 195k students … that is more than 2x the entire population of Alameda and 35x the number of school districts!

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Measure H & A: Fool me twice?

August 30, 2011

Measure H

To offset severe state budget cuts to Alameda schools, minimize school closures, and protect the quality of education, student safety, class sizes, excellent teachers and staff and to restore prioritized cuts to music, athletics, advanced placement courses, shall Alameda Unified School District levy a temporary, 4-year emergency tax of $120 per residential parcel and 15 cents per square foot for commercial/industrial parcels (see the voter pamphlet), with exemptions for seniors, citizen oversight and all funds staying local?

Measure A

The parcel tax would fund community priorities for the schools, including small K-3 class sizes; recruitment and retention of teachers; neighborhood schools; Advanced Placement courses; music, media, PE, and drama; programs to improve student performance; high school athletics; technology; secondary school counselors; and adult education.

Reality

The school board approved a new, four-year contract for Vital on a 3-2 vote Tuesday night, with board President Ron Mooney, Vice President Margie Sherratt and trustee Niel Tam voting for the contract and trustees Mike McMahon and Trish Hererra Spencer voting no. The contract retains Vital’s $204,225 salary for this year and grants her an annual 3 percent raise, full medical benefits and performance pay of up to $15,000 a year. It’s in effect through June 30, 2015.

Union leaders said they think the district is spending too much money on administrators. They said the district has added several administrators this year at the expense of front-line workers.

Can’t wait to see AUSD spin this one!

Tacky engagement announcement in Alameda Sun

February 11, 2011

Really tacky engagement announcement in the Alameda Sun:

They request that the public send them money and gifts, care of the Alameda Sun.

Yikes!!! Unless this is a spoof of some kind … really tacky. Who are these folks (Alameda royalty?) and why should the public send money and gifts?

File under “stupid ideas”

August 20, 2008

Way back when, Bill Wattenburg a.ka. a “visionary”, had a brainwave (?):

The idea came to Bill Wattenburg from his perch in the Berkeley Hills one day as he watched the morning commutathon far below, creeping like an undulating snake along the East Bay freeways. To Wattenburg, a Bay Area engineer, consultant and talk-show host long known for his esoteric proposals — many of them questioned at first, then adopted — the thought of turning the (Alameda Naval) air station into a commuter station was a natural.

Here’s Wattenburg’s latest idea: to have thousands of drivers park at the air station, be collected up on buses that in turn are loaded onto ferries for the bay crossing, and then rolled off in San Francisco and on to their final destinations.

’nuff said!

Carbon footprint for dummies?

July 6, 2008

In this article on bamboo frames for bicycles, there is this little gem of a quote from a guy who might need a little primer on the concept of carbon footprint …

“I like to say this bike has the lowest carbon footprint on the planet,” Calfee said.

But then there’s this:

Calfee uses bamboo imported from Taiwan, but he hopes to find California-grown bamboo soon.

Pat Bail redux

February 9, 2008

Alameda’s resident Miss Manners opines:

Resident Pat Bail, the former president of the Alameda Republican Women Federated, said she supported John McCain … As for the Democratic race, “I think Hillary is too strident and harsh,” Bail said, “and she’s kind of lost it quite frankly.

I’ve never agreed with anything that Pat Bail said, so this is no exception. But I thought it was funny (in a bizarro sense) that she would use the very words that folks around town associate her with to describe Hillary!

2007 Alameda Darwin Awards

April 29, 2007

Two nominations for the 2007 edition.

  1. Guy tries to break into a surveillance store located off Park Ave (on Webb Ave) and is later apprehended by the cops.
  2. Good samaritan (!) discovers he’s been cleaned out the next morning.

Another “scoop” by Don Roberts!

September 28, 2006

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Late breaking news from Don Roberts … a typo in a reader’s letter! What did you expect? A proclamation to stop the presses now that the relationship between the complexity classes P and NP has finally been established? C’mon, give the guy a break. As I said before, Woodward and Bernstein, alamedadailynews certainly ain’t! 😉

Darwin Award for an Alamedan … almost!

August 23, 2006

This guy almost got himself nominated for a Darwin Award 🙂

A man who lives in the 1800 block of Shore Line Drive told police that a woman he met at a local bar stole his computer and other property after he allowed her to stay with him. The victim, 28, said he met the woman about two weeks ago at Lucky 13 on Park Street and offered her a place to stay when she told him she was from out-of-town. After the suspect was living with him about a week, the man went out-of-town for a couple of days. When he returned home, the woman was gone, along with his computer, watch and debit card. The stolen items are worth about $2,650. The victim described the woman as 28 years old and provided police with her possible name.