February 27, 2014
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
Mayor Reed's photo drew our attention to this story about
Detroit's financial problems in last Sunday's Mercury News
All Eyes on Detroit Cuts
others watch closely as bankrupt city aims to slash pensions
By Dale Kasler Staff Writer
Sacramento Bee Feb. 23, 2014
In a case with significant
implications for public pensions in California, the bankrupt city of Detroit is
proposing slashing retirement benefits by up to 34 percent.
The city would cut pensions 10 percent for retired police officers and
firefighters, and 34 percent for other municipal retirees as it tries to resolve
the largest municipal bankruptcy in American history.
Detroits plan is being closely watched in California, where two cities are
trying to exit bankruptcy and cities such as San Jose are facing financial
stress over rising pension costs.
The city of San Bernardino has hinted that it might try to reduce its $24
million-a-year bill to CalPERS, although it hasnt yet filed a reorganization
plan. Last fall, the city of Stockton proposed a bankruptcy plan that leaves
pensions untouched but restructures much of its bond debt.
Adding to the tension over
pension costs in California: San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed is backing a ballot
initiative that would give state and local governments broad powers to reduce
In December, Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Patricia Lucas shot down a
key part of a 2012 voter-approved measure that cuts workers pensions in San
Jose. But the judge said the city could reduce workers paychecks to achieve the
On Thursday, Moodys Investors Service warned Stockton and San Bernardino that
they must tackle pension costs or else risk returning to insolvency. Moodys
also noted that Vallejo, which resolved its bankruptcy without cutting pensions,
is facing renewed financial problems and now faces the risk of a second
Last week, the governing board of CalPERS set in motion a new round of rate
increases to deal with the increasing life expectancy of hundreds of thousands
of retirees in California. The increases for municipalities and school districts
are expected to be substantial, although they wont start until 2016 and will be
phased in over five years.
In December, the bankruptcy judge in Detroit ruled that the city could use
bankruptcy to scale back pensions for current workers and retirees, the first
time thats ever happened.
Many bankruptcy experts say the Detroit ruling could open the door for rollbacks
of pension benefits in California. But officials with CalPERS say California
pensions have additional legal protections not available to workers in Detroit.
Notably, California public pensions are protected by state law and the state
constitution, according to lawyers for the California Public Employees
Still, were troubled by the Detroit bankruptcy decision, and we disagree with
it, CalPERS lawyer Gina Ratto said in December.
For Immediate Release
February 20, 2014
San Jose Firefighters and Police Officers
Call for Measure B Fix Before New Taxes
Our unions believe the most
responsible course of action to restore public safety services is to fix the
fatally flawed Measure B with legal pension cost savings prior to asking the
residents of San Jose to raise their sales tax.
For over two years our members have proposed and supported legally reducing the
costs of pensions to generate savings to restore the hundreds of police officers
that have left San Jose and to provide adequate staffing to improve fire and
medical emergency response times.
Although we are appreciative of recent calls to raise revenue we can only
support asking the residents to sacrifice by raising their sales tax if the
destructive disability provision and the uncompetitive 2nd tier pension for new
hires are fixed and pension cost savings are realized.
It is important to note that the current 2nd tier pension for police officers is
less lucrative than the CalPERS pension enjoyed by Mayor Chuck Reed, Sam
Liccardo, Pierluigi Oliverio and 5 other city council members.
We need pension cost savings the residents can count on before asking them to
raise the sales tax.
Please click the links below for the latest news:
The Daily Fetch (Article)
Reed says in State of the City speech that public safety is his top priority.
~ ~ ~
State of the
City Speech and Reed proposes putting firefighters
on motorcycles to improve response times. (Article and
Season Has Started
In case you haven't noticed,
campaign season is in full swing. The direction San Jose will be headed for
years to come will be decided now. Public debate has begun over continuing the
destructive policies of this Mayor and City Council or taking a new approach.
We will be walking and phone banking for our endorsed candidates from now until
June. Please make time to spend a couple of hours talking to voters about fixing
San Jose. We will be updating you with weekend walking and weekday phone banking
dates and times as they are scheduled. Below are a few walking dates to get
everyone warmed up.
Walk with our very own Officer Raul Peralez to replace termed out Sam Liccardo
in downtown District 3.
For Raul's walks we will meet
at the POA Hall for a brief training before hitting the neighborhoods.
Saturday, March 1st
Shifts at: 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to
Saturday, March 29th
Shifts at: 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to
~ ~ ~
Walk for Paul Fong to replace termed out Pete Constant in west San Jose District
We will meet at Paul's
Campaign office, 1475 Saratoga Ave Suite 168 (across from the Westgate Chevy's)
for a brief training before walking.
Saturday, March 15
Shifts at: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 16th Shift at:
1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Please send me an email to
confirm you can attend one of the dates so we can give the campaigns an estimate
of how many people will be attending but feel free to show up even if you have
not RSVP'd. Members are welcome to bring your friends and families on the walks.
Call me with any questions
James Gonzales <email@example.com>
On Friday we received the final
ruling from Judge Patricia Lucas regarding Measure B. Consistent with her
previous tentative ruling, City workers won on the major issues. Click here to
log in to for ruling on the Members Only homepage:
and for the analysis, click here:
In recent months, we have witnessed the resignation of nearly half of our
recent police academy graduates. Most have resigned to work for other cities out
of frustration with the Tier 2 pension plan that offers substandard disability
benefits. Unfortunately, Judge Lucas' final ruling has resulted in this same
disability definition now being applied to ALL POLICE OFFICERS in San Jose (Tier
1 and Tier 2). We know that working without adequate disability benefits as a
police officer is filled with risks for both you and your family. We are
currently reviewing private policy insurance plans in an attempt to provide a
small amount of coverage. Please realize that no insurance plan can replace what
you and your family have just lost.
The earliest the City can implement anything is July 1, 2014 due to a stay
order which is still in effect. As we learn more about the City's implementation
plans, we will notify you. The next step is for both sides to consider the
appellate process. Again, we will keep you apprised of developments.
On another note...
A few of you noticed that there has been a change to our paychecks. There is
a category listed under "After-Tax Deductions" titled 'Benefits Administration
Fee'. This fee is listed with a dollar amount of 21 cents. Last year, this
deduction used to be listed under the "Employer Paid Benefits" and had a dollar
amount of $0.00.
So what gives? Why is the City apparently taking 21 cents out of each biweekly
paycheck this year when it wasn't last year? The answer, via Rhonda Schmidt the
Senior Analyst with HR, is they're not. There has always been an employee paid
"Benefits Administration Fee" in the past but was never noticed because it was
wrapped up and included in the premiums of voluntary benefits offered through
the City (including long-term disability insurance, vision, etc.).
The 21-cent charge represents a flat rate, per employee, to have those benefits
offered and administrated.
POA President Jim Unland penned this piece for the Mercury News.
It appeared in the paper on Feb. 25th...
San Jose police: Candidates'
Ideas for Restoring Public Safety Miss the Mark
By: Jim Unland
One San Jose City Council
member wants to change the City Charter to set aside 40 percent of the budget
for police. Another took 14,000 words to spell out his flawed plan to save the
San Jose doesn't need a budget shuffle, and it doesn't take 14,000 words to save
the police force. It only takes three: Fix Measure B.
San Jose council members running for mayor are trying to re-brand themselves as
public safety advocates. Sam Liccardo has his crime plan manifesto, Pierluigi
Oliverio has his 40 percent budget gimmick and Madison Nguyen wants to restore
the burglary unit because she is now hearing from the affluent areas of San
These proposals are all mayoral political stunts.
Claiming to be leaders who can restore neighborhood safety while ignoring their
own culpability must cause these politicians heartburn, since they all voted for
policies that have made us less safe.
Why is it that just a few months before an election we are hearing their ideas
for rebuilding our public safety infrastructure? What have they been doing the
past several years?
Liccardo touts his idea to magically hire more police. We can't. The few
officers who do get hired aren't staying. No amount of money thrown at
recruiting and retaining officers can fix the root cause of why the exodus
continues. The reason is Measure B.
Council members Rose Herrera, Liccardo, Nguyen and Oliverio asked voters to
support Measure B, promising it would restore city services. How's that worked
Emergency response times are at historic highs, crime rates continue to rise and
our newest officers are leaving for other agencies before they even complete
training. From the last police academy, only 25 of the 50 hired remain. With a
doubling of the number of officers eligible to retire at the end of this year,
the problems will get worse.
Measure B provides new officers the worst pension plan in the state. It comes
with no guarantee that it will still be there when an officer retires, and it
provides so little protection for an officer injured in the line of duty that
officers have had to buy their own disability insurance.
The council members running for mayor know this. They know that our recruitment
and retention struggles are caused by Measure B. To add insult to injury,
Liccardo, Oliverio, Mayor Chuck Reed and five other council members enjoy a
CalPERS pension that is more lucrative than what they voted to give new police
The problem Herrera, Nguyen, Liccardo and Oliverio face is that their desire to
be the next mayor prevents them from admitting they got it wrong. In their
minds, it would be political suicide to ask the voters to fix Measure B.
Admitting mistakes is not how one wins elections.
Another idea being bandied about and apparently now tacitly supported by the
Chamber of Commerce is to raise San Jose's sales tax to "fix" public safety.
This idea is irresponsible and unfair to residents because it fails to address
the root problem.
Unless Measure B is fixed to include legal pension cost savings, a competitive
second tier pension plan and disability protection for those injured in the line
of duty, taxes should not be raised.
We are losing officers faster than we can replace them. A 40 percent budget set
aside or a 14,000 word crime plan won't change this fact or make San Jose
neighborhoods safer. To accomplish that, Measure B must be fixed.
Jim Unland is president of the San Jose Police Officers
Association. He wrote this for this newspaper.
Ed. Today's (Feb. 27th)
paper included two letters to the editor in response to Jim's article
Still Needed in San Jose
Letters to the Editor Mercury News Feb. 27, 2014
agree with Jim Unland, San Jose Police Officers Association president, that
Measure B needs to be fixed, I do not agree that a revenue measure will not
improve public safety.
A revenue measure will provide much needed funds for community services that
have a direct impact on public safety. These services include infrastructure
such as roads, sidewalks and streetlights to decrease traffic accidents and
crime. Additional revenue will provide funding for community centers, libraries
and parks to give youth and adults an outlet other than crime and the streets,
as well as economic development to provide jobs. These are just a few of the
community services that can be improved with a revenue measure. Yes, Measure B
needs to be changed, but a revenue measure is needed.
LaVerne S. Washington
AFSCME President, City of San Jose Confidential Employees Organization
~ ~ ~
President Correct on Measure B
Letters to the Editor Mercury News Feb. 27, 2014
In his oped
(Opinion, Feb.25), Sgt. Jim Unland, the president of the San Jose Police
Officers Association, wrote that his response to the mayoral candidates
hyperbolic fixes for the public safety crisis can be stated in three words: fix
Measure B. My response to Unlands insightful article can be stated in just two
words: Amen, brother!
Rita Barsotti Nostrand
Judge Patricia Lucas' ruling
on Measure B is now on the home page of our website, you no longer need to log
in to view the PDF. Please click here to visit our website:
THE TRIALS AND
TRIBULATIONS OF SAN JOSE AND THE S.J.P.D.
If "safety issues" are now a priority, is Reed coming to the
party a little late? For those of you interested, this is how the paper covered
Mayor Reed's State of the City Address
Safety Issues Are Priority
his final State of the City address
Feb. 21, 2014
SAN JOSE In his eighth and
final State of the City address, Mayor Chuck Reed on Thursday vowed to spend his
final year in office trying to make San Jose safer by bolstering the depleted
police force, speeding up 911 response times and reducing homelessness.
Those are among the top concerns of the citys nearly 1 million residents in
this key election year in which four of Reeds City Council allies are among
those running to succeed him. Reed struck a mostly upbeat tone during his annual
address, delivered in his signature dry, pragmatic style. Unfortunately, we
dont have the resources to do as much as we want or need to do, Reed said
toward the end of his speech. But he concluded: Weve got 10 months and eight
days to go. Lets make every day count. Please join me to make San Jose a great
city that we can all be proud of. The half-hour evening speech at the revamped
San Jose McEnery Convention Center offered the 65-year-old mayor an opportunity
to reflect on seven years in office which he called challenging and
difficult and lay out his vision for his final year before he is termed out:
The mayor vowed to restore
the ranks of a police department depleted by budget cuts and waves of
retirements and resignations. Pay and benefit cuts he championed to ease the
bite of soaring employee retirement costs have helped prompt cops to leave in
recent years. While he promised to continue efforts to keep and recruit
officers, police union critics continue to blame him for the officer exodus.
Reed advocated changes in the way the fire department responds to 911 medical
calls, as response times have consistently missed county targets in the past
year, leading supervisors last month to issue big penalties. But the
firefighters union opposes his proposals, such as using smaller vehicles with
fewer firefighters or even motorcycles for medical calls.
He will push to spend more money and partner with the county, among other
groups, to provide housing and other services to the citys nearly 5,000
He will vote on March 4 to put the renewal of the citys library parcel tax on
the June ballot but stopped short of supporting a possible half-cent sales tax
increase that could reach the November ballot.
He hoped the citys ongoing court case against Major League Baseball will be
settled by the end of the year: I look forward to watching the next mayor throw
the first pitch for the San Jose As, he said.
County supervisor and mayoral candidate Dave Cortese said Reed deserves much of
the blame for the public safety problems hes trying to address. Its going to
be an uphill battle for him to make any real progress in the last few months,
Cortese said. In his first state of the city speech, in 2007, he promised before
he left office to wipe out what was then the sixth straight year of funding
The budget is now essentially balanced, helped in part by surging revenues and
the various cuts Reed and his colleagues have made to help offset increased
retirement costs for city employees.
Still, he implored the citys future mayor and council members to stand on our
shoulders and continue the fiscal restraint, conceding that the citys full
financial problems cant be solved before he leaves office on Dec. 31. Contact
Mike Rosenberg at 408-920-5705.
Retiree Larry Brightwell
pointed out this article in yesterday's Washington Post, the headline of which
doesn't endear most citizens to San Jose City workers and retirees
In San Jose, Generous Pensions
for City Workers Come at Expense of Nearly All Else
San Jose Mayor
Chuck Reed looks out over the city in 2012
Click on the link below to read the story...
Last Week's Poll
For the most recent Rasmussen Reports releases, click here:
This missive from Les Nunes provides some helpful information
that can save you a trip to Police Personnel on Senter Rd. when it's time to
renew your I.D. card
It was good talking last night. I can't make it to as many PBA meetings as I'd
like to, so it's always a treat for me.
I really enjoyed the Farsider today; great mix of humor, news, and meaningful
content. The dog on the trampoline had my wife and me in stitches.
While going through the qualification/ID card renewal process yesterday, I
learned something. Forgive me if it's old news, but it was new to me. The
renewal form that begins the process can be obtained from Victoria Ramirez at
Police Personnel in advance. She can either fax a signed copy to you or she can
email it as long as you have a printer. Then, all you need to do is fill out
your portion of it and show up at the Range with it. This saves you the drive
out to Senter Rd. and allows you to start and finish in one trip to the PD. If
this isn't common knowledge, maybe you could pass it on to the rest of the
troops. I know it doesn't fix the real problem, but at least it helps a bit. I
called her yesterday morning and I had my copy printed out within about 5-10
Thanks for the kind
words about the Farsider, Les. I wasn't aware of that shortcut you pointed out.
It's info that every retiree who wants to carry a current CCW-endorsed I.D. card
will be grateful for. (The phone number at Police Personnel is 408-277-5215.)
Just a note of thanks regarding Sal Pizarro's column about our Christmas
shopping spree. I have been doing this work since 2008. The foundation's mission
is to provide charitable relief for children in need and those children who are
in traumatic crisis due to a loss of a parent from domestic violence. This past
December we hosted 50 needy children and had 80 police officers from 12
different agencies volunteer their time. Each child received a $125 Target
gift card from our foundation. We try to raise the needed funds all year long.
Our website is
and we are a designated 501 ( C) 3 charitable org. All donations are tax
deductible under IRS rules.
For those unaware of the
program, we recommend a visit to the website to see what "Shop with a Cop" does
for kids at risk and the community at large.
I left Maine in 1955 for the very reasons outlined in the story of the Maine
State Troopers surviving on road kill to feed their families. (Last week's
I clicked on the source article from the Bangor Daily News and was struck by the
asinine comments following that story, but not at all surprised. That's the
Maine attitude. It comes from living in a bubble since the 1600s. Before I left
with Joyce, who was five months pregnant with our first child, I was attending
Gorham State College with a major in Junior High School education. One of my
goals like everyone else was to be employed upon graduation, so I kept a close
eye on job offers posted on the bulletin board. Every job in every district was
hiring at $1,500 a year. The wage went up to a glorious $3,000 annual salary if
the candidate would coach the school athletic teams. All of them. Needless to
say, I was not impressed. At the same time I had been working at a large
commercial bakery for over five years. One day I was very ill and called in
sick. When I arrived at work the following day I was confronted by a hostile
supervisor who told me I was fired. No reason. No appeal. No remedy. On the
following day I was called back to work. The reason? We made a mistake!
They sure did. I decided my wife and I were going to leave family and Maine and
head west. I could not tolerate spending my working life for $1,500 a year or
for an employer who on a whim could fire me for no reason. Upon closer look, I
realized that employees with 20+ years for the same company were terminated. One
case involved a clerical worker who was fired because her eyesight was failing
due to a cataract. She was dumped on the street; no pension, no health plan,
nothing, and now too old to be employed.
I'm sorry to say it, but that's Maine. That was Maine when I left, and I suspect
not much has changed in 50+ years since then. Maine was a typical New England
society organized on the British model of " class." There were two broad
classes: Those that had money and those that didn't. I didn't. Old family names
predominated in the social structure. Mine was shanty Irish; I was the son of a
cop. Policemen in Maine had little social status and were paid starvation
wages. During WW II my father was paid $49.00 a week before taxes while a
shipyard worker building Liberty Ships in the South Portland yards were making
over $200 a week. There was no workers compensation for policemen injured on
the job. My father was severely injured twice and unable to work for a year each
time while he recovered. My mother was the breadwinner during those hard times.
She worked in a school cafeteria and we survived on the leavings of the day.
That's Maine. That's the attitude those poor State Troopers in the article are
dealing with. Many of them who have families are trapped. Unfortunately, their
children will be also.
Nor is Maine generous with higher education. I was fortunate to be one of 35
students to graduate from a Jesuit High School. That education was the key for
me. I knew there was a better life to be had and I went for it, just in time.
Our families who were typical Mainer's tried to stop us from leaving with dire
warnings of what would happen to us in the big world outside of the Maine
cocoon. I realized we had to leave before our baby was born. If we didn't, we
would never be able to break out of the mental prison that Maine fosters. We
survived and did well.
When I saw the Trooper story in the Farsider it struck a nerve. I wrote a
comment to the Bangor Daily News expressing my feelings toward the Maine State
Legislature. I won't repeat it here, but "Cheap B-------" seemed to fit the
Are you saying that you
used the term "Cheap Bastards" in your comment to the Maine newspaper, but that
you were reluctant to use it here? You and I need to sit down and have a talk,
After a while I think everybody gets tired of listening to the politicians,
pundits, and what-have-you's debating the issue of the minimum wage. Seems like
every four or five years, it's here we go again. Some people call it a living
wage, others say it is barely a sustainable wage. Whatever. Maybe I am missing
something, but as far as I can tell there seems to be a pretty simple answer to
it all. Don't get me wrong. I could very well be misunderstanding the entire
situation. The economy can be a complicated subject. Then again perhaps it is
not all that complicated.
It might be a good idea to find a start point, then go from there. The start
point would be an agreed upon number (minimum wage) for the different areas of
the country. In some areas that number would be $7.25 an hour; in others it
could be $9.25 or even more. It would vary from Kansas to New York or San
Francisco etc. But it shouldn't take an economic genius to work up numbers that
come pretty close for all the different areas. Getting everyone to agree on that
number might be quite a different matter. Still, I think it's very possible to
Once everyone agrees to what the living wage should be (the start point), most
of the work is done. After that, all minimum wage increases would automatically
be based on the annual Cost of Living Index for each area of the country.
Period. The key word there is automatically, the same as a lot of employee
groups. Can you imagine being fair to everybody, even those at the start of the
Once the start point is reached and agreed upon, all further debates would
effectively cease. There would be no more roller coaster spikes in the numbers
(say from $7.25 an hour to $10.10). Or worries about the unemployment rate going
higher, or the rhetoric coming from all corners, or political parties snarking
back and forth. It would stabilize that entire sector of the market.
If the cost of living went up say 2.5%, then the minimum wage would go up 2.5%
each year. Everybody could count on it, business owners could plan their
strategies on it and respond accordingly. Does it not make sense to take the
political rhetoric out of the discussion and let the numbers speak for
Seems reasonable to me. Am I being to naive? Could there be an elephant in the
room that is being ignored? Agree on a start point and go from there.
Hope all is well. Take care,
Did you happen
to notice the results of last week's poll above?
The only problem I see with your suggestion is at the start of the third
paragraph of your message. To wit: "Once everyone agrees to what the living wage
should be,,," Therein lies the rub. In this day and age you can't even get
everyone to agree that the earth revolves around the Sun
Here is that photo with Bobby Burroughs and Bill Leavy I was talking about. I
have seen photos of the sign on the old City Hall above the garage entrance. it
was removed when the City Hall was torn down and the sign bounced around from
cop to cop. I have shown the photo to a few people, including Chief Esquivel,
and everyone has expressed an interest in locating this sign and restoring it to
mount again outside the PD. If Bill doesnt know where it is, can you include
the photo in the Farsider with the hope that someone has stored it in their
attic, garage, man cave, etc.?
Thank you for your help.
Jr. (John Carr Jr.)
SJPD Historical Society
Hi Junior: I vaguely recall taking the photo when Bill worked as
the Mayor and City Council's security officer and Bobby was his supervisor. (Our
three desks were within spitball distance of each other.) I checked with Bill
and he said he didn't know what happened to the sign 15 minutes after he helped
Bobby load it into the truck, so your best bet is that a Farsider reader will
know of its location and hopefully respond to your request.
In my role as the Chi Pi Sigma Alumnae Association Historian I get a lot of
photos sent my way. The two I have attached are allegedly from the DOW
demonstrations in 1967, I believe at San Jose State. Anyhow, I am looking for
names of any of the officers who can be identified. I personally am intrigued by
the gas gun officer. It looks like they loaded up the smallest officer with the
Carm Grande former
multi-term POA president spoke out against Councilman Sam Liccardo's bid for
mayor in last Saturday's Letters section of the paper
Liccardo Would Further Erode
San Jose Police
Letters to the
Mercury News Feb. 21, 2014
Mayoral candidate, Sam
Liccardo, released his political platform and it lacks reason.
His efforts to dismantle the San Jose Police Department will continue, if
elected mayor. The reason officers are leaving is the result of San Jose having
the lowest rate of total compensation among all Bay Area cities. Liccardos
suggestion to penalize those hiring agencies lacks wisdom and forethought,
opening the way for further criticism of our elected leaders. I believe a
productive approach would be to enhance the compensation package of the SJPD,
which would attract officers from other agencies.
It costs $170,000 to train each new recruit. Wouldnt it be wiser to allocate
some of that expense to compensation which could forgo the expense and loss of
trained recruits? The 200 new recruits he proposes would end up costing the city
more than $3 million to train, and then they would leave, resulting in another
$3 million training expenditure.
Carm J. Grande
SJPD Retired San Jose
Carm's email address is
should any of you want to comment on his letter. Meanwhile, this San Jose
resident provided a rebuttal to Carm's letter in yesterday's paper
Lets Pay Our Bills Before
Letters to the
Mercury News Feb. 26, 2014
police retiree recently argued (Letters, Feb. 22) against Councilman Sam
Liccardos plan to hire more than 200 police officers and to force cities that
hire away our officers to repay San Jose taxpayers for the cost of their
training. Instead, he urges larger paychecks to improve officer retention. The
council already voted to restore police officer pay 11 percent over the next two
years. The average officer makes more than $110,000 in pay among the highest
among large U.S. cities and an average first-year retiree receives a
The question isnt what our hardworking officers deserve, but rather what we can
Taxpayers must foot the bill for $3.7 billion in unfunded liabilities for
benefits that politicians promised to unions. Lets pay our existing bills
before promising more.
I'm sure you are aware of the data on the proposition B vote. If not look at
Total registered voters in San Jose: 386,804
Total votes cast on proposition B: 144,424
Total Yes votes for proposition B: 95,716
Total No votes for proposition B: 42,964
Percent of Yes votes: 69.02%
Percent of No votes: 29.7%
Percent of Yes votes compared to total voters registered: 27.7%
What it says is that 27.7% of registered voters passed proposition B. This is
the data that counts rather that alleging that 70% of voters adopted proposition
B. That is not true. Now 100% of voters have to live with what 27.7% of voters
For what it's worth, this is democracy and spin in action. I was always turned
off by the 70% figure.
I sent the following reply to Phil
I don't doubt your figures, Phil. And I do see your
point. But a good argument can be made that of those who voted, 70 percent chose
to vote Yes for Measure B. Registered voters who don't vote are totally
worthless and shouldn't even be called voters, registered or otherwise.
Phil responded with this
Good argument or not, still 100% of the voters and citizens are detrimentally
affected by the 27.7% who did vote. I would like to let it be known that 70% of
the registered voters did not vote for what they now have to live with.
Only 27.7% of the voters set the policy for the entire electorate. Of course the
ones who did not vote have no one to blame but themselves.
HERE ARE SOME
DETAILS ABOUT BILL LANSDOWNE'S RETIREMENT
Our inbox lit up like a Geiger counter at Fukushima early Tuesday
evening with numerous e-mails from readers that contained links to news stories
about the retirement of San Diego PD Police Chief Bill Lansdowne. For the
handful of you who are unaware, Bill started his career with the SJPD back in
the mid-'60s and rose to the rank of Deputy Chief before retiring to take over
the Chief's job in the city of Richmond (CA). He returned to San Jose in 1998
and became SJPD's Chief following the departure of Lou Cobarruviaz and a short
stint by Acting Chief Walt Adkins. A few years later Bill accepted the job as
San Diego's police chief where has served for 10 years. I'm not quite sure of
the math, but I think Bill's total time as a full-time cop comes to about 46
The article below is one of the more comprehensive that arrived in our inbox.
It's from the ABC affiliate in San Diego and was received from Craig Shuey. To
read the story and view an embedded accompanying video, go to the website by
clicking on the link below. The article itself begins under the link...
San Diego Police Chief William
Lansdowne Resigns from the Force
SAN DIEGO - San Diego's
beleaguered police chief - who has been in the hot seat amid scandals involving
some of his officers - is stepping down from the force.
Team 10 Investigators were the first to break the news that Chief William
Lansdowne was resigning. Sources told us that Lansdowne turned in his
resignation around 1 p.m. Tuesday. 10News Reporter Allison Ash called the chief
for comment but he said he had nothing to say and hung up.
The police department later issued the following statement:
"San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne is announcing his retirement from
the San Diego Police Department, effective Monday March 3, 2014. The Chief has
served the citizens of San Diego for over 10 years and has successfully led the
Department through countless critical events."
"Although Mayor Elect Kevin Faulconer did not ask for the Police Chief to
resign, Chief Lansdowne felt it was time to do so. The Chief absolutely
supports the new Mayor and believes in his vision and direction for the City."
"This was a difficult decision for Chief Lansdowne to make as he considers
San Diego his home and truly values the citizens of this city and the employees
who work here."
Mayor-elect Kevin Faulconer said during a brief news conference that Lansdowne's
decision was his and his alone.
"It was not a decision that he came to lightly or easily," Faulconer said. "The
chief loves this department. The chief has been a fantastic leader of this
department and has served this city very, very well - day in and day out,
through natural disasters. It's been my pleasure to work side-by-side with Chief
Lansdowne since I've been on the council for eight years now."
Other Officials React to Lansdowne's Resignation
Interim Mayor Todd Gloria issued a statement acknowledging Lansdowne's
leadership and length of service with the San Diego Police Department:
"William Lansdowne has served San Diego exceptionally well throughout his 10
years as our Chief of Police. His leadership led to our lowest crime rate since
the 1960s, his hallmark calm demeanor helped get the San Diego Police Department
and our City through challenging financial cutbacks, and he remains a respected
national expert on public safety.
"Im grateful for his tremendous contributions to San Diego and wish him
well in retirement, said Interim Mayor Todd Gloria. It is my hope that a
national search that includes significant community input will be performed to
select the next police chief.
"The City Council and I stand ready to help the Mayor-Elect ensure the San
Diego Police Department has stable leadership and continues to be America's
San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis released the following
"During a law enforcement career that spanned nearly five decades, Chief
Lansdowne brought strong leadership to police departments in three California
cities, serving with distinction and increasing public safety in those
communities. He has been a trusted law enforcement partner in San Diego, someone
who was never afraid to embrace transparency, recognize problems when they occur
and take steps to correct them."
San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore also released this statement:
"San Diego Police Chief Bill Lansdowne has enjoyed a long and distinguished
career in law enforcement. He has led the department through one of the most
difficult fiscal times in the city's history and enjoyed many years of reduced
crime through his leadership and foresight.
In my 44 years in law enforcement, I have never been associated with anyone
who worked harder or gave more of himself than Bill Lansdowne.
I believe Chief Lansdowne has positioned the San Diego Police Department
one of the finest law enforcement agencies in the country in a good place, by
requesting an outside audit. This will ensure the public's confidence in the
fine men and women who work so hard to keep San Diego safe.
Bill is not only a trusted colleague, but a good friend and partner. I wish
him and his wife, Sharon every happiness they deserve."
The Back Story
Seven women have accused San Diego police officer Christopher Hays of sexually
harassing or assaulting them while he was on duty. Hays has been charged with
five criminal counts, including felony false imprisonment and misdemeanor sexual
battery. He resigned from the police department last week.
Two years ago, the city was faced with another sex scandal involving former
officer Anthony Arevalos, who is now serving prison time. In 2012, he was
sentenced to almost nine years in prison for demanding sexual favors from women
he pulled over on suspicion of drunken driving in the Gaslamp Quarter.
A woman also claims that back in 2002 a police supervisor sexually harassed her
in front of a trainee. She said the incident happened during a traffic stop in
the Gaslamp District and that she had been scared to tell her story for more
than a decade.
Critics have called for the chief to step down but up until now, all indications
were that he would not. He told 10News just last week that there will always be
critics and that he planned to keep moving forward with efforts to regain the
"I've survived over a long period of time because I believe that I have the
heart to work through problems, the experience to get by them and a clear track
record of success," he said on Feb. 17. "Sure, things are going to go wrong in
this police department. I get that. But that's why you have Internal Affairs and
that's why we're asking for an outside audit."
Search Begins for Replacement
Mayor Elect Kevin Faulconer told 10News an interim police chief could be
announced in the next few days.
Sources tell 10News that Faulconer is close friends with Assistant Chief Shelley
Zimmerman. In addition to Zimmerman, there are three assistant chiefs: Cesar
Solis, Mark Jones and Walt Vasquez. Assistant Chief Boyd Long retired last year
and is running security at Valley View Casino, but he is another possibility.
10News asked Gloria if Zimmerman would make the best choice, given all of the
sexual misconduct accusations made by women against the department.
"Shelley Zimmerman is an incredible police officer," he said. "She's a great
leader of the department. Ultimately, the decision of who should fill that role
is that of the mayor-elect. At the end of the day, Shelley is more than a woman,
she's a wonderful police officer and she should be judged on her experience as a
police officer and not her gender."
Former city attorney Mike Aguirre says the new leader needs to bring stability
and reform. Officer Hays, the son-in-law of Assistant Chief Jones, quit after
being charged with sexual misconduct. Officer Donald Moncrief is also under
investigation for allegedly exposing himself and Officer Karen Almos is facing
DUI charges after being found passed out in her car this past weekend at Balboa
"A lot of these things are getting a lot of publicity, but in the long run,
those are not going to be the major issues that people are going to have to
manage in order to have a good and safe department," Aguirre told 10News.
Aguirre also said gender should not play a role in hiring a replacement.
"I don't think that should even be a factor," he added. "Those are all serious
issues but that shouldn't be a factor. She may very well be the best, but not
for that reason."
~ ~ ~
Ed. One of the many emails I received advising
of Bill's retirement came from his wife, Sharon, who is also a retired San Jose
cop. Her message was short and sweet:
"Youve probably already seen it on the news, but Bill is finally retiring and
Im thrilled." Love, Sharon
On behalf of everyone up here in NorCal who consider you and Bill personal
friends, Sharon, we are thrilled for you, too. We wish you luck in taming the
workaholic cop and dissuading him from taking on another law enforcement agency.
Unless, of course, he would consider making a run for Sheriff of Santa Clara Co.
After all, we would love to have the two of you back in our neighborhood.
2ND ANNUAL COPS
Gold Resort & Casino
711 Lucky Ln, Coarsegold, CA 93614
(The same place as it was last year)
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Below is the information for making your reservations:
Check in is at 3:00 p.m.
2) Group Name Cops Rendezvous
3) Phone Number 1-866-794-6946
4) Block Number B-C-R 0326
5) Rate is $97.01 tax included (you will also receive a $10.00 slot e-cash
certificate and a $10.00 dinning certificate at check in)
6) If you are having any problems, call Audri her phone number is 559-692-5220
7) Dinner will be held at the California Market Buffet in the casino at 5:00PM
(bring your $10.00 dinning certificate that you will get at check in)
8) Check out is 11:00 a.m. March 27th
Please RSVP to Tom Mazzone at 408-592-2240
Ron Rosso at 408-930-0754
or Jack Baxter at 707-513-7023
We are looking forward to seeing all of you. Lets get together and have a good
Our Host, Gary Keith, in all of his wisdom and lack of computer and phone
skills, has deputized the individuals above to do all of the work. (Nothing has
changed over the years.)
THE BEST OF THE
LATE NITE JOKES
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is
making the rounds again. Today he did an interview with Matt Lauer on the
"Today" show. Lauer said, "Thanks for getting up early to be with us." Then Ford
said, "I never went to bed."
Disney World is raising the price of a one-day ticket to Epcot to $94. It's now
so expensive that families are saving money by just taking actual trips around
A spelling bee in Missouri was forced to shut down on Saturday because it ran
out of words for the final two contestants to spell. The organizers said, You
know, someone ought to just publish a big book with all the words in it.
The FDA has approved a new camera that can be swallowed so that doctors can look
at the inside of their patients' bodies. So to answer your question: Yes,
selfies CAN get worse.
The NFL is warning Arizona
that if they approve a bill that discriminates against gays they may not get to
host the next Super Bowl. And it may also hurt their chances of hosting the Tony
Today in California a couple walking their dog found $10 million worth of rare
coins buried in the ground. It's the biggest stash of coins found since Oprah
had her couch cushions cleaned.
The group that came up with "Got milk?" has officially retired the slogan. They
said the ad campaign was a success. Pretty much everyone has heard of milk.
Mark Zuckerberg says he doesn't think he overpaid when he bought the instant
messaging service called What'sApp for $19 billion. He said, "Hey, if you know
another way for people to communicate without talking, I'm all ears."
The Olympics are finished.
Everybody has gone home, so once again there are no gay people in Sochi.
Someone who worked at CNN's Piers Morgan show said he was nasty to the people
who did his makeup. Let me tell you something. When you're my age and you're on
high-definition television, the last people you want to be nasty to are the
Taco Bell is now serving breakfast. We have no affordable health care yet,
but Taco Bell is serving breakfast.
Hey, you know who they locked up? Public enemy No. 1, El Chapo Guzman. He was
the leading distributor of cocaine and cocaine-related items in the world. So
another setback for Toronto Mayor Rob Ford.
Alec Baldwin says he's
quitting public life because he's sick of the attention he's getting, and he
wants to reclaim his privacy from the media. What better way to do that than in
a 5,000-word article in a magazine with your name and picture on the cover?
These days, Alec Baldwin is probably best known for his role on "30 Rock." He's
an arrogant out-of-touch egomaniac who can't see the world beyond his pile of
money. I can't remember what he did on that show.
Russell Crowe has officially asked Pope Francis to see his new movie "Noah." The
Pope responded with a question of his own: "Promise you don't sing in this one?"
I don't think the Pope is going to see that movie. He is the Argentinean Pope.
He is the most interesting Pope in the world. "I don't always watch movies, but
when I do . . ."
Today President Obama and
House Speaker John Boehner had a private meeting in the Oval Office. They met
for about an hour. It turns out the last five years have been a big
misunderstanding. They actually agree on everything. I'm glad they cleared that
Obama and Boehner talked about manufacturing, immigration, healthcare,
Afghanistan, and the drought in California, among other things. A Boehner aide
said they met because they believe it's important to work together on issues
where they find common ground. Unfortunately, there were no issues on which they
found common ground.
Women spend an average of 335 hours a year getting ready, according to some very
passive-aggressive researchers who are outside waiting in the car.
Robin Thicke and Paula Patton
are separating after 10 years of marriage. I cant say Im surprised. It only
took me one summer to get tired of Robin Thicke.
A substitute teacher in Oklahoma was arrested after she tried to teach while
drunk. She had everybody fooled, but then she gave herself away by carrying her
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN
LEGEND UPDATE AS OF FEB. 22, 2014
behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
Does asparagus have miraculous cancer-fighting properties?
Are Facebook and CNN contributing money towards the
medical care of an infant car accident victim every time a message is shared?
Brouhaha involving King Digital Entertainment, maker of Candy Crush Saga,
over trademarks and similarities to the CandySwipe game.
Alert about a 10-year-old girl named Hailey Owens
reported as having been abducted on her way home from school in Springfield,
Nestle has recalled some HOT POCKETS brand products due to possible
contaminated beef issues.
A hidden image of a topless woman appears in the home video version of
Disney's The Rescuers.
Video clip shows police seemingly ignoring a getaway car full of bank
What are we celebrating on the holiday known as 'Presidents Day'?
A woman discovers on a call-in radio show that her boyfriend is married.
Jack Benny arranged to have a single red rose sent to his wife every day
after he was gone.
Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news
stories from around the world!
Worth a Second Look
Does Bubble Yum chewing gum contain spider eggs?
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
Large or Full Screen
for YouTube videos...
We are still
trying to reduce the number of animal clips that have been sitting
around the barn and the corral, so we are once again leading off
Ready to see something
special and moving? Watch this short video of a rescued chimpanzee interacting
with Jane Goodall as it is being released back into the wild.
The footage in this clip is
as suspenseful as the making of it is remarkable. It's about a little guy and a
much larger predator. But worry not, it has a happy ending. At least for the
time being. (4 Mins.)
What could be more fun than
playing in a puddle if you happen to be an energized Elk calf, especially if
there is some accompanying music? You can see at the 23-second mark that he
stops to see if he can spot the orchestra. (48 Secs.)
It's pretty obvious to us
that the Mother Goat on the left has taken her three kids (kids = young goats,
get it?) out to play on the playground equipment. (1
I like little bunny rabbits
as well as the next guy, but to have this many chasing me could freak me out.
Isn't there something in the Bible that forecasts an event like this?
My friend's new dog is a
real cutie, but when it comes to playing catch he absolutely sucks. Watch this
slo-mo footage and you'll see what I mean. (1 Min.)
Talk about strange
bedfellows. Have a look at this clip where a newborn lamb meets Pancake the Cat
and Sugar Tree the Dobie. (2 Mins.)
Have you ever had a good
look at a Three-Toed Sloth? When observed by humans they are usually way up in a
tree. Here's one that would have become road kill had it not been for a
concerned Costa Rica motorcyclist. (1 Min.)
As a former cat owner,
there is little doubt in my mind that everyone who has ever owned a feline can
relate to this clip. They truly can be "cute jerks." (2
This is a bitter-sweet tale
about Mick the puppy who was afflicted with a condition known as Swimmer Puppy
Syndrome. The clip has a happy ending, so don't be afraid to watch it.
People definitely have
different ideas on what they think makes perfect pets. if this critter was
yours, would you call it an "adorable Pangolin?" (1
Just so you know, a Pangolin is also called a Scaly Anteater."
Like I said,
each to their own when it comes to choosing a house pet, or in this case, two.
Don't freak out; the clip only lasts for 30 seconds.
Another option you have for
a unique pet is a Porcupine. Just hope you can find a friendly one like this
that thinks he is a puppy. Oh, and don't forget to buy a pair of heavy leather
gloves, heavy pants and thick shoes or boots. In other words, it's best not to
play with it if you are wearing shorts, a pair of flip-flops and no gloves.
Or you can choose as a pet
a little Screech Owl that doesn't require any help taking a bath. You will,
however, have to blow-dry it with your hair dryer. (6
Screech Owls aren't the
only winged critters who care about their personal hygiene. Check out this fella.
Sharon Lansdowne's email
from earlier this week says this is the best welcome home anyone could ever
expect. It's about a soldier-dog reunion, and while it may be moving, it doesn't
say much in our view about the relationship between the wife, who is shooting
the video, and her husband. Here they have been separated for six months and she
continuously shoots video of the dog slobbering all over her husband's face.
Question: When the dog had finally settled down, did the wife insist that her
husband wash the doggy slobber off his mug before they made kissy-face together.
Or did she share in the love between Man and Dog? Curious minds want to know.
This is a classic clip from
the BBC's "Frozen Planet" series narrated by Sir David Attenborough It deals
with the criminal element in the Penguin community and may change your opinion
about the tuxedoed birds of the Southern Hemisphere. (2
Don't get rattled, Charlie.
All these two elephant seal pups want to do is cuddle with you, nothing else.
What kind of pet owner
would make the family dog the laughing stock of the neighborhood by making it
wear booties? We found one couple who fits that description.
Have you ever seen or heard
two cats actually talk to one another and wonder what they are saying? It
probably goes something like this: "Can you believe that dumb human actually
thinks we can talk to each other?" (1 Min.)
Here's another interesting
clip from the BBC that shows how a Chameleon manages to stay cool in a hot
desert. I remember having one of these little critters when I was about five.
Folks bought it for me at a county fair. Brought it home and within an hour the
damn cat ate it. (2 Mins.)
Want to see something else
from Mother Nature that is fascinating to watch? Check out this video received
from Jim Silvers and look at the impact Wolves have had on the wildlife, forests
and even the rivers in Yellowstone Park. But don't criticize the British
narrator's definition of what he refers to as a deer before you take note of the
definitions under the link below. (4 Mins.)
We are now returning to our regular programming...
Is this incident that took
place between a motorist and a cop in Plano, Texas all that unusual? I think
not. I would wager that at least 75 percent of you (if not 99 percent) have been
involved in something similar. It just wasn't spoken about.
The late Carl Sagan stated
in his celebrated 13-part 1980 series "Cosmos: A Personal Voyage" that there
were more stars in the universe than there were grains of sands on all of the
beaches on planet Earth.This is an excerpt from the series where Carl made that
mind boggling statement some 34 years ago. (2 Mins.)
But could Carl Sagan have
been wrong? Could it be that that statement was nothing more than hyperbole in
an attempt to stir the viewers' imagination? It is, after all, a phrase that has
been repeated countless times over the last three decades. This looks like it
could be the answer. (4 Mins.)
Carl's passing at the age
of 62 left a big hole in the scientific community as well as the public's. This
compilation of news reports on the day he died provides some insight on how the
astrophysicist impacted all of us. (5 Mins.)
From Harry Mullins comes
this clip of a 200 mph Corvette flying by a Texas State Trooper who couldn't
have cared less. For you Corvette freaks and/or those of you who have a "need
for speed," this video should send a Chris Matthews-like tingle up your leg.
Here are the details: On December 11, 2013, a 700 HP Hennessey C7 became the
first 2014 Corvette Stingray to break the 200 mph barrier by reaching a maximum
speed of 200.6 mph. This was achieved on a closed section of the Grand Parkway
which connects I-10 to Hwy. 290 on the west side of Houston, Texas. Officials
from TxDOT, Texas DPS and TransCore were on hand to witness the testing of the
EZ tag toll system. (5 Mins.)
We have all scene gobs of
footage of the infamous tsunami that devastated Japan in 2011. Since then, more
video has been made available, like this one that was recently posted on
YouTube. It is one continuous shot that begins with the public address system
warning of the tsunami. A person who is adjacent to a river starts his camcorder
and continues to let it run, capturing a sequence that shows the water rushing
up the river, flooding the area, then begins to recede. Even though the footage
has been stabilized, he did a remarkable job of holding the camera relatively
steady considering the stress he had to be under. Had it been me, my pants would
have already been soaked long before the water got to me.
David Attenborough, as many
of you know, is famous for his nature documentaries such as Planet Earth, Frozen
Planet and a host of other fascinating nature productions created by the BBC. If
you don't recognize him by his name, you probably will by his voice. (He
narrated the clip about Penguins in the Critters' Corner above.) Once in a while
David likes to have a little fun, and that's what he did by providing this
commentary on the sport of Curling. (2 Mins.)
(I had to grab
this short clip from Wimp.com as the folks who control
YouTube in the UK wouldn't allow it to be shown in the U.S.)
prefer a slightly different form of Curling, like this example
that was popular at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino.
How close is close in terms
of a close call? Watch this 53-second video and you will see. When the clip
starts, keep your eye on the guy in the upper left corner of the screen.
Remember that ending scene
out of Indiana Jones where the Ark of the Covenant is boxed up and wheeled
through an endless government warehouse?
Check out this website...
Russ Jones says
this story about one of the "Battered Bastards of Bastogne" comes full circle
near the end and that viewers should stay with it. Jonesy is right; it's a
fascinating tale. (For the record, members of the 101st Airborne who were under
siege in Bastogne that was part of what came to be known as the "Battle of the
Bulge" were also referred to as the "Battling Bastards of Bastogne.)
The Siege of Bastogne
This remarkable video of
near perfect timing and coordination we received from Lumpy is apparently being
recycled as we ran it a few years ago. Check it out and see if you think it was
worth another look. (6 Mins.)
Bob Kosovilka argues that
there is such a thing as a Guardian Angel, and he points to this compilation
video to make his point. (5 Mins.)
Think you might find it
relaxing to get away from it all and be a lighthouse keeper for a while? Maybe.
Maybe not. (3 Mins.)
Don Hale and I both surmise
that the operator of this car destroyer goes home to his wife and kids at the
end of the day relieved of any stress. (3 Mins.)
We heard that this has been
turned into a refrigerator magnet and that it is selling like hotcakes in
Colorado and Washington State.
If these were available
when I was a young teen I would probably be in a wheelchair today. Or dead. They
call this Trike Drifting. (2 Mins.)
Why should you spend 10
seconds of your valuable time to watch this guy clean his Ferrari? Because of
the surprise ending, that's why. (10 Secs.)
Warning: Avoid this clip if
you are a rabid fan of American football. It's nearly two minutes of John Cleese
ranting about Soccer vs. Football. (2 Mins.)
Coolest guy in the world? I
think not. I don't see him doing anything in this video that Leroy and I didn't
master when we were growing up on Oahu in the mid-1950s.
On the other hand, this guy
is something else. Looking back at our careers, one of the things we should all
be grateful for is that we never got involved in a foot chase with someone like
Damien Walters. (3 Mins.)
Go hide your face in shame,
Ringo. Even in your prime you couldn't hold a candle to this 10-year-old female
drummer. (3 Mins.)
What's that? You say any
10-year-old girl can handle a drum set like her? OK, let's go down six years and
check out this 4-year-old. And keep an eye on his facial expression.
What are the odds that twin
sisters separated at birth would reunite after being raised 5,000 miles apart
and speaking different languages? Not very good, you say? Watch this.
Before we get to the next
item, here's a very brief introduction to the sport of Speed Riding.
That brings us to this clip
we received from Stan Miller. He lives in Cannabis City (Seattle) and says the
only thing that is stopping him from joining these speed riders is his wife
Leslie, who refuses to let him go unless he significantly increases his life
insurance. (10 Mins.)
If you know anything about
playing the guitar, you will likely be impressed with this Iranian who is touted
to be the fastest guitarist in the world. Have a look and listen and see if you
agree with that title. (4 Mins.)
If you are flying on a
Boeing 767 in the not too distant future and concerned about how well the
airliner is built, don't be. Watch this video of a 767 encountering severe
turbulence just above the runway during the landing. It doesn't look all that
bad until you watch the slo-mo replays. (1 Min.)
When it comes to customer
service, no one can beat Japan. This clip that runs less than a minute will back
up that statement, at least as far as public transportation is concerned.
When in Turkey do as the
Turks do. When it's time to send a large ship to the salvage yard and turn it
into scrap, they don't fool around. The simply drive it up into the yard.
This clip is for you
gearheads, especially those of you who are at least a little familiar with
professional drag racing. A video camera mounted on the rear of a top alcohol
dragster and pointed backward shows you what a 267 mph run looks like. For the
uninitiated, the driver first does a burn-out to heat up his tires, then
reverses to the starting line and waits for the "Christmas Tree" lights to turn
green and start the race. (You might want to chop your volume a little as this
clip gets loud.) (2 Mins.)
This clip about China and
its feeding frenzy for European and American cars may surprise you (more are
sold in China than in the U.S.). But that's not the point of this video. It's
about a Chinese farmer who has invented a wind-powered electric car for the
equivalent of 1,000 British pounds, or about $1,667 in U.S. dollars.
Here's an acrobatic
maneuver by a young Chinese acrobat you are unlikely to see anywhere else. In
fact, you may even ask yourself if what you are seeing is real.
Is there any question that
UPS and FedEx wish they had thought of this before DHL? It was the perfect prank
that netted the German shipping company some excellent advertising on the cheap.
Here's a guy
with a humongous set of you-know-whats. Listen to him as he calmly talks to
someone on his cell phone while he captures an approaching tornado on video that
is heading directly at him. (2 Mins.)
Using a police motorcycle
demonstration team seemed to us to be a strange way to begin a training film
showing how an automotive differential works. But that's apparently how it was
done back in 1937. While you may want to cut this film at the 2:30 mark, we
suspect many of you former motor cops might like to see how your forerunners
handled their bikes. (9 Mins.)
Speaking of bikes, we would
like to know how this guy manages to balance this bicycle that is touted as
among the tallest in the world? Seems to us that the center of gravity would be
so far from the ground that it would easily fall over. Could it be video magic?
We report you decide. All the footage is from a helmet cam; we only get to see
the entire bike in a couple of still shots at the end.
The cops who are leaving
the SJPD and going to other California agencies are making a huge mistake. On
top of the huge salaries cops get paid in Dubai, look what they get to drive.
Then again, every time we fill our cars with gas here in the U.S. we are helping
pay for these super cars. (1 Min.)
If those wheels are not
impressive enough, check out the latest addition to the fleet as well as some of
the others. The first one the Bugatti Veyron is the fastest production car
in the world. (4 Mins.)
Pop quiz: What do Tootsie
Rolls and the Korean War have in common? Listen as two retired Marine Corps
officers tell you how valuable the candy was to the Marines who had to deal with
sub-zero temperatures while they were surrounded by thousands of North Korean
soldiers at the Chosin Reservoir. (3 Mins.)
If you thought what is
arguably the most famous photograph in the world Earthrise was simply a
matter of pointing a camera out a window, you would be wrong. This video from
NASA tells the story of how Frank Borman, Jim Lovell and Bill Anders aboard
Apollo 8 worked together on Dec. 24, 1968 to capture the amazing image. It
wasn't until 7 months later on July 20, 1969 that Neil Armstrong and Buzz
Aldrin made history by being the first humans to walk on the moon.
If this next to the last
item doesn't tug at your heart, nothing will. It's a short 31-second foreign
public service announcement that is almost enough to bring a person to tears.
It is not our intent to
leave you on a downer, but this tribute to our fallen military personnel was so
moving and profound that it was a shoe-in for this week's closer. Please
consider taking a few minutes to watch "Mansions of the Lord."
Pic of the Week