Monday, August 30, 2010

Cardiff Kook makes front page of Wall Street Journal

Tomorrow's news today.

Tuesday's WSJ features the Kook.

How come they never covered the Scripps Turd?

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Tony on the taps

That's Tony Kranz manning the Stone kegs at the Leucadia ArtWalk beer garden. Maggie Houlihan was enjoying the music there as well.

Dan Dalager was the conductor on the London-style double-decker bus shuttling people to Leucadia from the train station.

When you see the council people around town, they seem like good, regular people. It's hard to see them as the same people who sold us out to the city unions, stonewall on public document requests, and got involved in that bitter harassment fiasco.

Bicyclists not welcome in Encinitas

Bike tire massacre in the 101 Puncture Lane this morning.

The city and NCTD are still doing nothing about the invasive, non-native goat head puncture vines.

Leucadia Art Walk today

Come on down.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Graceland can be yours

7026 Estrella del Mar, La Costa. For sale by owner, who was last seen in a 7-11 in Oklahoma.

Elsewhere around town today,

two bicyclists broken down on the Vulcan Puncture Path. One reported 20 goat head punctures in his tire. So far NCTD and the Encinitas Parks and Rec Department appear to be doing exactly nothing about it.

You too, Dan! An ill wind blows for good ol' boys from Washington D.C. to Encinitas this November.

Rancho Tyvek Estates. Reportedly just sold. No construction action yet.

The top of the bike / running trail between the golf course and El Camino Real. The path starts across the street from Quail Gardens.

I hadn't heard of this train death, and couldn't find anything about it online. Somebody apparently either suspects foul play or needs more evidence for a lawsuit vs. NCTD.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dalager: it's OK to build an illegal rock wall on public property as long as you give me $1400 worth of kitchen appliances for $150

The Union-Trib has the goods on Dan Dalager and his sweetheart kitchen deal from Aztec Appliance, whose owners Matthew and Robin Gordon were contesting a violation before the city council.

Maggie says she was offered a free refrigerator but turned it down. Even Stocks had enough sense to recuse himself.

I'd like to see a prosecution.

State law prohibits elected officials from accepting any gift or combination of gifts from the same source worth more than $420 in any one year. Dalager reported accepting no appliance gifts in 2009, on state-required disclosure forms.

The scary thing is the only way this came to light is that Dalager went blabbing about his free kitchen to a reporter. How many good old boys are on the take but not so loose-lipped?

Dalager doesn't even have a campaign web site up. Is he phoning in the election because he thinks he can't lose, or can't win?

HT: Leucadia Blog.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Your August HoodLink is up

In the great American tradition of Publius, our anonymous fellow Encinitans at HoodLink have published again to strike a blow for good government. In this issue: I-5 expansion, Barth coverage in the U-T, Quail Gardens, and Maggie's been hanging with the bad boys.

August 2010 HoodLink

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City Council Guide

The more I learn about Encinitas politicians, the more brilliant and accurate this Leucadia Blog City Council Guide seems.

I haven't figured out who Tony Kranz is yet, but I'm pretty sure Kristin Gaspar is Tracy Flick, the Reese Witherspoon character in Election.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Teresa Barth campaign kickoff speech


My favorite part?
Transparency in government and full citizen participation in the decision making process is critical to our success as a City.

I have been principled and conservative in how our tax dollars are spent. I fully support public employee pension reform.

Tranparency in government and reform of employee pensions. That's a pretty good campaign platform. And it's interesting that Barth, widely viewed as a green Democrat, is running as a fiscal conservative -- and rightly so! The Republicans on the council have been anything but fiscally conservative.

I hope the other candidates will follow Teresa's lead in starting to discuss issues. One candidate doesn't appear to have any campaign information online, and another has a web site that's very long on bio ("one time, at band camp...") and a big zilch on issues.

Summer Sunday Concert by the Sea

Starting now. Come on down! The band is an Irishy rock band called Scelpin (sp?). Barthy & Houlihan are here.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Council races in a nutshell: Kristin Gaspar, Dan Dalager, Teresa Barth, Tony Kranz

This quote from the Coast News on the recent forum captures the essence of the candidates perfectly: Dan Dalager, aloof and (feigning?) confused; Teresa Barth, crusader for open government; Kristin Gaspar, who either doesn't know about and/or won't take a position on anything other than the Hall Sports Megaplex; and Tony Kranz, the good guy outsider.

“I was almost thinking that’s what our rules had said before,” Dalager responded when the audience member asked why he voted in favor of the measure and how would the two challengers vote if given the opportunity.

“Your memory doesn’t serve you very well,” Barth responded. “It goes against the grain of our democracy,” she said referring to the inability of the minority to be heard. “You don’t have to have a majority of the people already supporting something to have it go to council for discussion.”

Barth raised the stakes when she called the move to a majority council in order to agendize an item “appalling and embarrassing” to thunderous applause from the crowded auditorium. Kranz went further saying he would consider a process by which citizens could get an item on the City Council agenda while Gaspar said she would entertain arguments both for and against the three-person agenda rule.

The Vulcan bike path will destroy your tires

These are goat head thorns:

Whether you call it goat head, stickers, puncture vine, or sand bur, this plant is about the most obnoxious weed on the planet. It produces tiny goat head shaped burs that poke the foot and flatten bicycle tires. A large patch of them can even flatten the tires on a small car.

Puncture Vine is an invasive species of plant that originally came from Europe. The botanical name is Tribulus terrestris. This fast growing annual sends out a low forming, dense mat of tiny leaflets. The stems can grow up to 6 feet in length, covering large areas in a matter of a couple of months. They bloom in the early summer, producing tiny 5 petaled yellow flowers. The fruit of the puncture vine looks like a spiny 5 sided Maltese cross. After the individual fruit bursts open, it releases the goat head thorns.

The bike paths along the east side of 101 and west side of Vulcan between Encinitas and Leucadia Boulevards are absolutely infested with them. The photo above was after a very short jog along the path.

Goat heads will go straight through bike tires and give you multiple punctures. Tony Kranz hit them a couple weeks ago, and more recently an entire family's tires were massacred out on the same paths.

The city needs to remove this invasive, non-native species ASAP.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Encinitas resident Steve Aceti promotes plastic bag ban

... and it looks like it might even pass.

Amid growing frustration over mounting garbage in the Pacific Ocean, California is poised to become the first state in the nation to ban plastic shopping bags.

A bill by Assemblywoman Julia Brownley, D-Santa Monica, would bar grocery, convenience and liquor stores around the state from bagging items with plastic throwaway bags, with the goal of encouraging shoppers to bring their own reusable cloth bags.

Shoppers who didn't bring their own bags would need to purchase recycled paper bags, for a nickel apiece, to bag their groceries. [...]

The bill has the support of environmentalists and grocers, and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has indicated he will sign it if it reaches his desk. The plastic industry opposes the measure.


Steve Aceti, executive director for the California Coastal Coalition ---- which represents 35 coastal cities, five coastal counties and three regional associations across the state ---- said the group once preferred the recycling approach to a ban. Aceti said, however, that campaigns to encourage more recycling haven't made a significant dent in the problem.

"So many of these bags are showing up on beaches and in the ocean, and flying around in our communities," Aceti said. "It's just time for a solution, and that is a ban on a product that has outlived its usefulness."

He said it is time that Californians change their habits.

"We should start doing what people in Europe and other countries do, and bring our own bags to the store," he said.

I'm usually opposed to nanny state legislation, but this is kind of like smoking on airplanes. It's just common sense to me. Plastic bags are a real environmental problem, both in the production and the disposal, and they are of no benefit to consumers relative to more environmentally friendly alternatives.

Houlihan and Barth are on board:

[Activist Gina] Goodhill was joined at a news conference by Encinitas Councilwomen Teresa Barth and Maggie Houlihan, who support the bill.

"It's going to help us keep plastic bags off our beaches," Barth said.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Dirty Feds force WiMax towers on unwilling Leucadians

The Leucadia Blog has been covering the unwelcome Sprint/Clearwire WiMax antennas coming to the Cabo Grill.

Today the Coast News has a story on Dr. Dan Harper, who tried to speak out against the antennas but was told the city's hands were tied by federal law:

Dr. Dan Harper, M.D., was among the first to arrive at the Encinitas City Council meeting the evening of July 21. Carrying a 12-inch stack of medical journal articles about the health risks of electromagnetic field, or EMF, radiation, he was there to speak on behalf of his patient, Michael Schwaebe.

Schwaebe was appealing the placement of WiMAX towers on the site of the former Cabo Grill at Coast Highway 101 and La Costa Avenue. WiMAX is often referred to as “a cell tower on steroids.” [...]

Harper said he was frustrated, but not surprised, that he was unable to complete his presentation.

It would have been illegal.

The wireless industry is protected by Article 704 of the Telecommunications Act signed by President Clinton in 1996 which prohibits arguments of potential health risks from communications towers to be made at public hearings, even if they are legitimate.

I don't know about the science behind the dangers of WiMax, but given the choice, I probably wouldn't live next to a WiMax tower.

Permit me to make an ideological point, though. This is what you get when you vote for Senators and Congresscritters who don't believe in limited government: you get heavy-handed orders from Washington saying locals have no control over what goes on in their towns, in their states, or in their private lives.

Read the Constitution. Pay special attention to the Bill of Rights. Then go vote for someone who has read it too.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

AAII investor meeting with CEOs of local public companies

Leucadia's own Chris Girand is the president of the San Diego chapter of the American Association of Individual Investors, and he's kicking off a series of chapter events with a big meeting with management from four local public companies:
The first of a new series of meetings featuring publicly traded companies domiciled in our own backyard will be held on October 2nd at the Scottish Rite center in Mission Valley. The meeting will run from 9:30 A.M. - 12:00 P.M. We'll meet with upper management of four profitable companies that share our San Diego roots. The floor will be open for discussion.

Andrew S. Clark / CEO / Bridgepoint Educations (NYSE: BPI)
Greg Garrabrants / CEO / Bank of Internet (Nasdaq: BOFI)
Gwen Rosenberg / Vice-President / Senomyx (Nasdaq: SNMX)
John M. Heffner / CFO / PriceSmart (Nasdaq: PSMT)

It's open to non-members. Cost is $5 to cover facilities and parking.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Anarchy in the ENC

Cardiff's Ken Harrison, writing in the Coast News Aug. 6 dead tree edition, apparently not available online, reminds us that people can still get together to get things done themselves rather than waiting for government action.

Folks in Encinitas are known for their roll-up-the-sleeves attitude, taking matters into their own hands, and getting community projects done. Prior to cityhood, local chapters of the Elks, Optimists, Soroptimists, Kiwanis, Lions, and other service clubs personally built almost every ball field in the area.

Twenty-seven years ago, Cardiff residents raised money and poured 1.2 miles of sidewalk along Birmingham Drive because the county refused to build a sidewalk on the busy thoroughfare. They financed the construction by selling one-foot squares where "owners" could put handprints and messages in the wet cement.

Such was the case recently for a band of 40 Crest Drive residents. In an act of "independence" on the July 4 holiday weekend, after waiting six years for the city of Encinitas to landscape the unsightly northwest corner of Crest Drive at Santa Fe Drive, residents took matters into their own hands.

He goes on to detail how 40 residents donated a little time and money to landscape the corner. If the city had done it, it would no doubt have cost 10 times as much and required fat contracts with city council cronies and many hours of studies by bloated-pension-getting city workers.

This is one of the things I love about Encinitas. The community spirit of the people has not yet been crushed by the bureaucrats and the public employee unions. That's becoming harder and harder to find these days.

And I bet you didn't even think of yourself as an anarchist.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Family fun nights at Quail Gardens

So I've missed the first half of this summer's Quail Gardens' Thursday Family Fun Nights. I won't make that mistake again. Bring a blanket and a picnic and the kids.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Suzy Brown resurfaces as "Suzy Tesla" at "XP Vortex" pitching free energy and Usana multi-level marketing

I am not making this up.

Thanks to Anonymous for the tip. Someone who looks an awful lot like Monster House Suzy Brown has shown up as "Suzy Tesla" with a web site called "XP Vortex."

The XP Vortex was the brainchild of a dream to spend more quality time with loved ones and be financially free to pursue my passions. I also wanted to create a business that would do the very same thing for others… a self-propelling business to free YOU financially. If you want to make a lot of money, first you need a dream or a passion about what you would do with the money. Then dream about your dream, visualize it, feel it, taste it, enjoy it. Not only WILL it happen, it MUST happen. That is how the Laws of Universe work. For me, my dream is about following in Nicola Tesla’s footsteps in recreating his dream for ‘Free Energy.’ What is Free Energy? Believe it or not, we can produce unlimited amounts of energy without consuming any fossil fuels, gases, masses, or even sunlight. No pollution and nothing gets consumed in the process. We can heat homes, drive cars, and power our homes without relying on a man-made ‘energy’ sources. Nicola Tesla, the inventor of electricity and wireless communication, almost finished his most important invention of all, Free Energy that could be transmitted everywhere in the world. JP Morgan pulled the plug over 100 years ago when he realized his investments in oil, coal, electricity and even the railroads would become worthless and obsolete. Never again. The XP Vortex is designed to fuel the research, development and engineering of Free Energy indefinitely. This is my dream and my life’s purpose. What’s yours?

I'm not sure how you get free energy from your run-of-the-mill multi-level-marketing scheme, but here's the pitch.

I hope the MLM investors do better than the Olivenhain rehab facility investors did!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Not so fast: Monster House Suzy Brown back in trouble

Yeah, the prosecutors screwed up, but they get a do-over:

Prosecutors will refile charges against Suzy Brown, the woman accused of stripping $1 million worth of lavish fixtures from the foreclosed home her Encinitas neighbors dubbed the "monster house," according to a deputy district attorney.

Superior Court Judge Aaron Katz dismissed felony theft and vandalism charges against Brown on Thursday after a preliminary hearing at the Vista Courthouse.

Katz said Deputy District Attorney Robert Eacret had shown evidence at the hearing that Brown, 45, had taken truckloads of toilets, windows and appliances from the Olivenhain mansion after she moved out in March 2009, but the judge said he had to dismiss the charges on a technicality.

Eacret, the judge said, presented little evidence that a foreclosure was complete and a bank owned the house when the fixtures disappeared.

A certified deed recorded by the county could not be admitted into evidence as an official record, the judge ruled.