January 5, 2012
Mattos, Editor and Publisher
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster
The Farsider is an independent publication that is not
affiliated with the San Jose Police Benevolent
Assn. The SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely
for the convenience
of the retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does
not represent or reflect
the views of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or
After a half-hour searching
the Internet for the best rendition of Auld Lang Syne to ring in 2012, we chose
this one. It starts with a short New Year's prayer, then segues to Sissel
singing one of the finest versions of Auld Lang Syne we have ever heard.
Combined with her beautiful voice, the nature photography that accompanies the
song makes this video very special...
If your computer has a problem playing the large screen version,
try this one...
And if you want to know more about the
Norwegian soprano, click on the link below...
Leroy and I
wish all of you the very best for a healthy, happy and prosperous 2012.
HEALTH & WELFARE
If you chose "Other," send an e-mail to
with a name and we'll list him or her along with the number
of votes they receive in this spot next week.
Results from last week's poll
For the full scope of state and national polling by Scott
Rasmussen, click on this link:
For the most recent releases, click here:
Read an interesting article regarding Obama's eligibility to be president.
Accepting his "Birth Certificate" makes him a citizen, this goes one step
further. It defines what a citizen is and what a natural born citizen is as
ruled by the Supreme Court in an 1874 decision in Minor vs Happersett. As far as
can ascertained, the ruling was never changed. In short, a natural born citizen
is one born of United States citizens. By Obama's own admission, his father was
a British subject at the time of his birth. Go figure.
(Dick) Tush, ID 1230
Yo to you too, Dick. Many
members of the Birther Movement have probably peed their pants over this issue
that has been circulating around the Internet, but there are two problems: 1) It
has become common knowledge in light of the controversy over immigration that
any person born in the U.S. — even if their parents are illegal aliens — becomes
a U.S. citizen the moment he or she pops out of the womb. 2) According to
Wikipedia, the Minor v. Happersett decision of 1875 dealt exclusively with the
women's sufferage movement. Click here:
If the on-line encyclopedia is correct, to apply it to Barack Obama's
ineligibility to be president because his father was a British citizen makes no
Side bar: While we're on the subject, some have also argued that Hawaii wasn't a
state when Obama was born. They are either too dumb or too lazy to check the
facts. Hawaii's status changed from a Territory of the U.S. to full statehood in
1959. Obama was born in 1961.
As I have stated time and time again regarding the Birther and the Truther
movements, virtually every reporter in the country would give his or her eye
teeth to become another Woodward or Bernstein and break the story that Obama was
illegally elected to the office of president — or that the U.S. government was
responsible for 9/11. The odds of either one happening are no better than
someone coming up with iron clad proof that Lee Harvey Oswald was part of a
massive conspiracy. It's been 48 years since he killed JFK. So far, nada.
• • • • •
Happy New Year, and thanks for the great job you guys do. I am not too good on
computers, but I hope there is a way you can show this!
Although the video included in Bert's forwarded
e-mail is two years old, it holds an important message that bears repeating. It
came with the following lead-in...
This video needs to be passed around to everyone who
has the keys to a vehicle. It is perhaps one of the most intense commercials
I've ever seen. I think Australia should be complemented for having the guts to
tell it like it is. And to try and get this campaign out to all of its licensed
drivers by airing it on TV.
• • • • •
A year or so ago you ran a series of articles on former officer Jim Pettipiece.
Jim was known as a good cop who had resigned several years ago to go into the
real estate business. Shortly before the Farsider article and updates, he had
been spotted in the downtown area of San Jose living among the numerous homeless
residents of the city. Jim had apparently fallen victim to some mental health
issues which led him to become victimized predators who survive on the
weaknesses of others. As reported, he was barely able to take care of himself.
I was wondering if anyone had an update on Jim and/or if there was anything that
can be done for him. I recall that a fund had been set-up for him through an
out-reach program sponsored by St. Joseph's Church, or something similar.
Thanks in advance.
Jim's plight was covered in
a half-dozen Farsiders in late 2009 and 2010, all of which can be found in the
Mail Call column. To access the newsletters, click on "Farsider Archives" on the
home page, then type "Pettipiece" (without the quotes) in the search field.
• • • • •
In the past 54 years do you think any of the 10 points Welch made in 1958 have
come to pass? The direction our country is taking is truly scary, and the
citizens of this great country are allowing it to happen.
• • • • •
The Republicans keep telling us that to create jobs, we have to lower the taxes
on the rich. Here is a guy who is rich and says he and his rich friends and
capitalists are not job creators. He appeared on the Dylan Radigan show today,
Tues, Jan. 3rd. You can Google it in a couple days to see the segment — or you
can go to this link and read an article by Nick Hanauer from Business Week,
If you are not into reading lengthy articles, you can watch a segment from
the 12/2/11 Dylan Radigan show where the rich guy explains his theory.
Anyone care to present a counter-point? Anyone? All I'm going to
say is that I suspected there was a rich guy somewhere out there in the
hinterlands who didn't believe the wealthy created jobs.
LOCAL NEWS FOR YOU
From the front page of
today's paper was this enlightening news about the mayor and council members'
S.J. Officials Weigh Cutting
By John Woolfolk
Mercury News — Jan. 5, 2011
As San Jose’s elected leaders try to trim city workers’ pensions whose rising
costs are gobbling up funds for services, their own guaranteed retirement plan
has drawn little scrutiny.
But amid growing employee outrage over proposed pension cuts — which Mayor Chuck
Reed wants to take to voters in June — he and some other council members now say
it’s unseemly for them to keep their own pensions, whose costs also are
“With the council pursuing pension reform, the mayor and council members should
personally lead by example by eliminating defined benefit pensions for City
Council members,” Councilman Pete Constant said.
On Wednesday, a committee headed by Reed unanimously approved Constant’s
proposal that the council on Jan. 24 consider steps aimed at terminating the
mayor and council’s pension plan.
California voters two decades ago eliminated pensions for state legislators at
the same time that they imposed strict term limits. But most full-time elected
officials in county government and the three major Bay Area cities are covered
by a pension plan — in many cases more generous than San Jose’s.
Pensions have been a white-hot issue at San Jose City Hall, where an 11th
straight budget shortfall looms as employee pay and benefits continue to outpace
revenues. The city’s employee pension bill has ballooned from $73 million to
$245 million in a decade. And despite revised estimates that shrank the tab for
next year, the pension costs are expected to keep climbing. The city has cut
staff — and last year even laid off 66 police officers — in large part to cover
Reed and council allies like Constant have called for a June ballot measure that
would shrink retirement benefits for new hires and require current employees to
pay more toward their pensions if they don’t switch to a cheaper plan.
San Jose’s mayor and council aren’t covered by the municipal pension plan for
employees, but by a separate plan administered by the California Public
Employees’ Retirement System, or CalPERS. That plan’s costs have climbed from
$130,727 in the last fiscal year to $159,827 this year, and Constant says it’s
underfunded by about half a million dollars — a tab that would have to be picked
up by taxpayers.
CalPERS records show the plan covers 10 retired elected officials and nine
current ones. Ten former elected officials also earned benefits in the system.
Unlike the 401(k)-type plans offered most private sector workers, pensions
guarantee a lifetime retirement benefit, typically a percentage of salary
multiplied by the number of years worked.
The plan for San Jose elected leaders allows full retirement at age 55 and pays
2 percent of salary for every year worked, with 2 percent cost-of-living raises
The plan for council members at current pay rates would provide a $13,000 annual
benefit to an elected official retiring at age 55 after serving the limit of two
four-year terms. But the benefit allows reduced retirement as early as age 50
that would pay a two-term council member more than $9,200 a year for life.
It also allows increased payouts for delayed retirement. A two-term mayor who
served two full terms on the council could retire at 63 with more than $44,000 a
Under San Jose’s charter, a council-appointed citizens commission convened every
odd-numbered year recommends pay and benefits for the mayor and council members.
The council must then either adopt that recommendation or something less.
That commission in 1995 had recommended pensions for the mayor and council,
which approved the new benefit in 1998. At the time, the mayor was paid $90,180
a year and council members $60,570.
Last year, the commission formalized the 10-percent pay cuts that council
members had taken voluntarily as they imposed similar cuts on the city
workforce. That shrunk salaries to $81,000 for the council and $114,000 for the
mayor. But Reed has capped his salary at $105,000 a year, the same amount he was
paid when he took office in 2007.
The commission last year also recommended that the council look into dropping
the pension plan for future mayors and council members. A commission survey of
some 800 residents found a majority felt that the city’s elected leaders were
overpaid, and almost a third of those surveyed favored eliminating city
retirement benefits for council members.
Constant and Reed want the city’s elected leaders off the pension plan as soon
as possible — which would leave them with only a 401(k)-type
defined-contribution plan. All the city’s current elected leaders are covered by
the pension except Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen and Councilwoman Rose Herrera.
Councilman Don Rocha and Pierluigi Oliverio said they have no objection if the
city drops their pension benefit. But Councilman Kansen Chu was concerned that
upfront costs for ending the council pension will make a gesture he considers
mostly symbolic not worthwhile.
“I want to see the numbers,” Chu said.
According to a memorandum by the city attorney, once council members start
coverage the CalPERS plan they cannot switch later to the 401(k)-type plan, even
when they’re re-elected, and the council cannot reduce the benefit formula to
lower costs. The city can terminate the plan with a two-thirds vote of the
council, but “will immediately become liable to CalPERS for any deficit in
funding for earned benefits, among other charges,” the memo said.
But Constant and Reed said that while the upfront cost for dropping the council
pension plan may be steep, it’s something the city should do. Constant said
pensions are supposed to attract and retain career employees, not reward council
members who in San Jose are limited to eight years in office.
“This is a short-term job,” said Constant, who already receives a pension after
retiring from the police force on disability. “They’re not made for that.”
FROM THE SJPOA...
Keep in mind
that the following applies to active personnel unless otherwise specified...
Jan. 4, 2012
We wanted to wish you a happy New Year and pass along
some information for those of you who could not attend yesterday's breakfast
It's that time of the year when our payments for
healthcare coverage change. This does not change the plan you are in or the
amount of your co-pays. This is the yearly adjustment to the "15% of the overall
costs of the cheapest plan" we all pay. Depending on which plan you are in, your
cost either went up a bit or went down a bit.
If you have the Kaiser single coverage plan, you will pay $2.66 more per pay
period based on 24 pay periods per year. You will pay $63.84 more this year for
If you have the Kaiser family coverage plan, you will pay $6.63 more per pay
period based on 24 pay periods per year. You will pay $159.12 more this year for
If you have the Blue Shield HMO single coverage plan, you will pay $6.89 more
per pay period based on 24 pay periods per year. You will pay $165.36 more this
year for your plan.
If you have the Blue Shield HMO family coverage plan, you will pay $18.89 more
per pay period based on 24 pay periods per year. You will pay $453.36 more this
year for your plan.
If you are in the Blue Shield PPO plans, you costs will be going down.
If you have the Blue Shield PPO single coverage plan, you will pay $15.11 less
per pay period based on 24 pay periods per year. You will pay $362.64 less this
year for your plan.
If you have the Blue Shield PPO family coverage plan, you will pay $37.62 less
per pay period based on 24 pay periods per year. You will pay $902.88 less this
year for your plan.
John Robb is taking the lead on preparing our
fund-raising efforts in the event we are not able to negotiate an agreeable
resolution with the City on our pensions. As you know, the Mayor's ballot
language is the City's fallback position if negotiations fail. We know that we
will be in litigation for several years if his current language is passed by the
voters in June. John has been working with Peter Mitchell and Kerry Hillis to
prepare a list of other law enforcement organizations who would come to our aid
if and when we need large infusions of money for the court battles.
I have been working with Peter Mitchell and Kerry Hillis on our upcoming
endorsement process. Four of our Councilmembers will be seeking a second 4-year
term (Ash Kalra, Kansen Chu, Pierluigi Oliverio and Rose Herrera). Nancy Pyle is
termed out and her successor will be chosen via a multiple candidate
free-for-all campaign battle in the Almaden Valley. There are also some county,
and state races in which we will be involved. We will be finalizing our
candidate questionnaire soon and will then set dates to interview some of the
candidates. When those dates are set, we will notify you. All members are
welcome to observe the process.
We have three more pension negotiation dates set already and we will provide you
with further updates as they become necessary.
RE: WEINER'S BULGE
AND OTHER HAPPENINGS OF 2011
Syndicated humor columnist
Dave Barry wrote this look back for those of you who slept through 2011 and
would like to know what happened from his point of view...
Dave Barry’s 2011 Year in
—It was the
kind of year that made a person look back fondly on the Gulf oil spill—
Granted, the oil spill was bad. But it did not result
in a high-decibel, weeks-long national conversation about a bulge in a
congressman’s underpants. Which is exactly what we had in the Festival of Sleaze
that was 2011. Remember? There were days when you could not escape The Bulge. At
dinnertime, parents of young children had to be constantly ready to hurl
themselves in front of their TV screens, for fear that it would suddenly appear
on the news in high definition. For a brief (Har!) period, The Bulge was more
famous than Justin Bieber.
And when, at last, we were done with The Bulge, and we were able to turn our
attention to the presidential election, and the important issues facing us, as a
nation, in these troubled times, it turned out that the main issue, to judge by
quantity of press coverage, was: groping.
So finally, repelled by the drainage ditch that our political system has become,
we turned for escape to an institution that represents all that is pure and
wholesome and decent in America today: college football.
That was when we started to have fond memories of the oil spill.
I’m not saying that the entire year was ruined by sleaze. It was also ruined by
other bad things. This was a year in which journalism was pretty much completely
replaced by tweeting. It was a year in which a significant earthquake struck
Washington, D.C., yet failed to destroy a single federal agency. It was a year
in which the nation was subjected to a seemingly endless barrage of highly
publicized pronouncements from Charlie Sheen, a man who, where you have a
central nervous system, has a Magic 8-Ball.
This was a year in which the cast members of Jersey Shore went to Italy and then
— in an inexcusable lapse of border security — were allowed to return.
~ ~ ~
more to Barry's column. Click on the link below if you are interested...
THANK YOU TO ALL MY
As we depart 2011 and progress into 2012, I want to
thank all of you for your educational e-mails over the past year. Unfortunately,
I am now totally screwed up and have little chance of recovery.
Thanks to your e-mails...
I no longer open a bathroom door without using a paper towel, or have the
waitress put lemon slices in my ice water without worrying about the bacteria on
the lemon peel.
I can't use the remote in a hotel room because I don't know what the last person
was doing while flipping through the adult movie channels.
I can't sit down on the hotel bedspread because I can only imagine what took
place on it since it was last washed.
I have trouble shaking hands with someone who has been driving because one of
the pastimes while driving alone is picking one's nose.
Eating a little snack sends me on a guilt trip because of the many gallons of
trans fats I have no doubt consumed over the years.
I cant touch any woman's purse for fear she has placed it on the floor of a
I now use a sponge to seal my envelopes thanks to those of you who sent me the
e-mails about the rat poop used in envelope glue.
And because of the same e-mails about rat poop, I now have to scrub the top of
every soft drink can before I open it.
I no longer have any savings because I gave it to a sick girl who was about to
die for the 1,387,258th time.
While I no longer have any money, that will change once I receive the $15,000
that Bill Gates, Microsoft and AOL promised to send me for participating in
their special e-mail program.
I no longer have to worry about my soul because I now have 363,214 angels
looking out for me thanks to all the e-mails I received and forwarded to
everyone I know.
Similarly, I have learned that my prayers are only answered if I forward your
e-mails to seven of my friends within 5 minutes.
I'm afraid to have a drink in a bar out of fear that I'll wake up in a hotel
room bathtub full of ice with my kidneys gone.
I can't eat at KFC because I now know their chickens are actually horrible
mutant freaks with no eyes, feet or feathers.
I can't use cancer-causing deodorants even though I often smell like a water
buffalo on a hot day.
I now keep my toothbrush in the living room because I was told by e-mail that
fine mists of water from the toilet sprays up to a distance of 6 feet when it's
I also want to thank some of you for getting me to stop drinking Coca Cola since
it can remove toilet bowl stains.
Furthermore, I no longer drink Pepsi or Fanta since the people who make these
products are atheists who refuse to put "Under God" on their cans.
I no longer buy gas without taking someone with me to make sure a serial killer
doesn't crawl into my back seat while I am filling up.
I no longer use Cling Wrap in the microwave because I now know it causes seven
different types of cancer.
And thanks for letting me know I can no longer boil a cup of water in my
microwave because it will disfigure me for life by blowing up in my face.
I no longer go to the movies because I could be pricked with a needle infected
with AIDS when I sit down.
I no longer go to shopping malls because someone will probably drug me with a
perfume sample and rob me.
I no longer receive packages from UPS or Fed Ex since I now know most of the
delivery people are actually Al Qaeda agents in disguise.
And I no longer check my answering machine because someone will ask me to dial a
number in Jamaica, Nigeria, Uganda or Uzbekistan that will cost me hundreds of
I no longer buy those expensive chocolate chip cookies from Neiman-Marcus thanks
to the e-mails I received that revealed their secret recipe.
I can no longer do any gardening because I'm afraid I'll get bitten by the
Violin Spider and my hand will fall off.
And no longer can I use anyone's toilet but mine because a big black snake could
be lurking under the seat and cause instant death when it bites me on my butt.
If you don't send this e-mail to at least 144,000 people in the next 70 minutes,
a large dove with diarrhea will hover over you and do his business on your head
at 5:00 p.m tomorrow afternoon. Not only that, but the fleas from 120 camels
will infest your back, causing you to grow a hairy hump. I know both will occur
because it actually happened to a friend of my next door neighbor's
ex-mother-in-law's second husband's cousin's best friend's beautician.
P.S. Did you know that after a lengthy study, a German scientist from Argentina
has discovered that people with insufficient brain activity read their e-mail
with their hand on the mouse. (Don't bother taking it off now; it's too
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN
LEGEND UPDATE AS OF DEC. 31, 2011
The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
• Legendary golfer is rewarded by a sultan with the gift of a golf club.
• Video purportedly demonstrates that 6-volt lantern batteries contain 32 AA
• The AAA offers a free towing service during the
holidays for motorists who have had too much to drink.
• Did Bill Gates create a list of 'Rules Kids Won't Learn in School'?
• Document purportedly issued in 1872 lists rules of behavior for public
• Can the striped mittenfish change its gender at will by turning its entire
body inside out?
• Photograph purportedly shows a "thank you" sign to
Jews from the Chinese Restaurant Association of the U.S.
• Does photograph show a Christmas card featuring a family photo taken at a
• Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a
collection of odd news stories from around the world!
Worth a Second Look
• A collection of New Year's beliefs and superstitions.
Still Haunting the Inbox
• Check out our 25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep
abreast of what's circulating in the on-line world.
• Visit our Top Scams page for a list of schemes
commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.
THE LIGHTER SIDE &
OTHER ODDS AND ENDS
When we receive a handful
of e-mails from seemingly unrelated retirees and all include a link to the same
video, it's a clue that the clip is worthwhile fodder for the Farsider. Such was
the case with this 4-minute story told by a retired state trooper...
• • • • •
Ron Mozley who lives up
north near the Canadian border sent in this video synopsis of the tragedy that
cost the lives of four Lakewood PD officers last year. He says it's "well done"
and "worth your time." He's right...
• • • • •
simulated) WWII aerial combat footage makes up most of this ten-minute short
film received from Chuck Blackmore. Titled "The German," it pits an RAF pilot in
a Spitfire against a Luftwaffe pilot in a Messerschmitt. The flying sequences
alone are worth a watch, but it's the surprise ending that will have many of you
scratching your head...
If you were in
fact surprised by the ending, this Wikipedia link will confirm what the short
• • • • •
Lots of folks like guns,
but the guy in this video from Dewey Moore seems to have turned his fondness for
firearms into a fetish. In fact, he likes guns so much that he even sings about
• • • • •
If the Iranians decide to
block the Straits of Hormuz and create an oil shortage, the U.S. doesn't have to
get involved. All we have to do is convince the Australian Navy to take care of
the matter. Have a look at this short clip sent in by Jim Silvers...
• • • • •
So where is the Occupy crowd? Vegas bookmakers are giving
excellent odds that the cold weather has driven them back to their parents'
• • • • •
How lazy are we getting
when we need to use an app on a smart phone to park our car? Check out this clip
from Alice Murphy...
• • • • •
For those of you old enough
to remember the hot rod days of the '50s and '60s as well as the music from that
era, here's another excellent trip back in time from Old Blue Web Designs...
• • • • •
Lumpy describes this dance
sequence as stunning, sensual and phenomenal. He also says he was once able to
perform at this level, but that was before his operation...
• • • • •
Lumpy also sends in a
Civics Literacy Exam containing 33 questions, 25 of which he said he answered
correctly which gave him a score of 75.76 percent. Big deal, I thought; I should
be able to do better. So I take the test, too. But midway through I realize that
this buggger is tougher than I thought. When it's over and I get to the results
page, I find that I missed one more than Lumpy, giving me a score of 72.72
percent. Even though I got outscored by the PBA's Secretary/Treasurer, I'm still
feeling pretty good because of this notation on the results page...
If you think
you can score better, go for it...
• • • • •
Personally, I prefer
quizzes like this one. Given the fact that I spent most of my time in elementary
school having a spit wad war with my buddy on the other side of the room and not
paying attention to the teacher, this test is more my speed...
The Smarty Pants Test
When it says you only have 8 seconds to answer each
question, they aren't kidding, so you'd better be quick!
See if you can
beat a score of 22...
• • • • •
Here's some excellent
footage of the new F-35B STOVL (short takeoff/vertical landing) fighter
undergoing suitability testing off the Virginia coast aboard the USS Wasp a few
months ago. A search of the Farsider Archives using "F-35" as the search
criteria will uncover some past Farsiders with additional clips of this amazing
• • • • •
The Snow Storm
I just got off the phone with
a friend living in northern Minnesota, near the Canadian border. She said that
since early this morning the snow has been nearly waist-high and is still
falling. The temperature is dropping way below zero and the north wind is
increasing to near-gale force. Her husband has done nothing but look through the
kitchen window and just stare. She said that if it gets much worse she may have
to let him in.
• • • • •
That's all we
have for the first Farsider of 2012. Thanks for visiting.
P.S. If you know how to perform a rain dance, git 'er done!
Pic of the Week