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The Farsider

April 5
, 2012

 

Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher <bilmat@comcast.net>
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster <leroypyle@sjpba.net>

 

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 its membership.



 
 




 

PENSION NEWS
 


There were only a few items of possible interest this week: This POA Membership Alert that links to the Protect San Jose website, the Sacramento Bee article from Craig Shuey below, the on-going Mercury News poll that we mentioned last week, and an article from today's (Thurs.) Mercury News. There is also some information in the Retirees' Assn. "Billy & Spanner" newsletter and the POA's "Vanguard," both of which you can access below.

If you are not a POA member, or you are but your e-mail address is not on file with the Association, you may want to start with the link below.
(Members whose addresses are on file should have already received this.)

<http://www.protectsanjose.com/content/pensiongate-pete-constant-lawsuit-denied>

 

• • • • •

 

April 4th

Bill,
 
Here is an article from today's Sacramento Bee which may be a little bit of good news for us retired civil servants. Medical benefits referred to in the article were not part of a pension package; they were, as I understand it, gratuitously granted to Sacramento County Employees by the Board of Supervisors, enjoyed by annuitants for several years, then reduced in 2007. The employees are arguing that gratuitous offerings have since become vested rights and cannot be reduced or taken away. The Federal District Court seems to be willing to listen to that position.

Craig
(Shuey) <cvshuey1459@gmail.com>
 

Retired Sacramento County Workers Win Ruling in Pension Suit

By Denny Walsh <dwalsh@sacbee.com>
The Sacramento Bee — April 4, 2012


A federal judge has refused to dismiss a lawsuit pressed by retired employees of Sacramento County over the reduced amounts paid to them by the county since 2007 to offset their health care costs.

U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller ruled that the retirees present enough of an argument to require a resolution on the merits and not just the law.

Noting that the law requires her at this stage to accept the plaintiffs' version of events as true and apply the law to it, Mueller ruled the plaintiffs "have alleged sufficient facts" to sustain their constitutional claims pending resolution of the suit by the judge or a jury after all the relevant evidence is in.

The motion to dismiss was filed in lieu of an answer to each contention in the complaint, and Mueller ordered the county to file such an answer by April 21. She also set a status conference for June 21.

Read more here:
<http://www.sacbee.com/2012/04/04/4389295/retired-sacramento-county-workers.html#storylink=cpy>

 

• • • • •



The third item is the ongoing poll the Mercury News that has been running the past few weeks that is asking readers if they support a ballot measure to control pension costs for San Jose employees? On the left below were the results we posted last week. On the right is the vote tally as it looks today.
 


While it's logical to assume that the poll was initially "stacked" after word about it spread via e-mail and Facebook by City employees and retirees — which we encouraged last week — what's strange is that the percentages of Yes and No votes have stayed rather steady over the past week. In fact, the Yes votes have even declined by a few percentage points while the No's have risen. So what's going on? The poll is designed in such a way that you can only vote once from the same computer, so employees and retirees are unlikely to be voting multiple times. Is it possible that the majority of the Mercury News readers haven't been paying much attention to the pension issue, and that because Democrats far outnumber Republicans in the area served by the Mercury News, their voting is in line with the perception that Democrats are pro-labor while Republicans are not? If you have a theory, feel free to share it with the rest of us. Send your thoughts to
<bilmat@comcast.net>.

If you want to check and see what the results look like now, click on the link below, then scroll down and you will find the poll on the left side of the page:
<http://www.mercurynews.com/news>

 

• • • • •



The fourth and final item about the pension issue was this article from the front page of the local section of today's paper...

Judge Upholds Most of Ballot Description

—Separate ruling foils labor’s bid to keep measure off ballot—

From staff reports
Mercury News — April 5, 2012


A Superior Court judge Wednesday overruled the objections of labor and affirmed the city of San Jose’s right to use the word “reform” on its June pension measure.

Judge Kevin McKenney issued his decision after an 80minute hearing Tuesday that at times resembled a dress rehearsal for the expected legal battle after the election.

McKenney also ruled that the city could use the words “To protect essential services” at the beginning of its ballot description, words a union attorney said would mislead voters.

The judge approved two minor revisions. The city and the unions agreed to cut the word “abuses” from a description of disability retirements. And a sentence in the analysis about establishing controls over retirement contributions was changed to say “additional controls.”

Taken together, McKenney’s ruling did not dramatically change the description of Measure B, which Mayor Chuck Reed has pushed to slow pension costs.

But a spokesman for the employees who brought the lawsuit said they had filed an appeal of McKenney’s ruling with the 6th District Court of Appeal, arguing that the opening language of the ballot summary was advocacy, not analysis.

In a separate ruling, McKenney denied the San Jose Police Officers Association’s bid to keep Measure B off the June ballot.

Labor forces say Measure B infringes on benefits promised to employees. The measure requires employees to pay more for pensions or choose a cheaper plan.

Meanwhile, retirees could see their automatic 3 percent cost-of-living increases suspended if the council declares a fiscal emergency.

While the argument Tuesday centered on the narrow language of the ballot measure, the underlying question of its legality kept arising.

A union attorney, Robin Johansen, said the words “To protect essential services” misled voters — that Measure B savings would not necessarily aid police patrols or libraries.

An attorney for the city, Linda Ross, countered that pension costs already had forced reductions in services. “The idea that this is a campaign slogan is wrong,” she said.




 

RETIREES' ASSOC. NEWSLETTER FOR MARCH
 


Clicking on the link below will download the current Retirees' Association newsletter to your desktop, after which you can open it with a double-click of your mouse. It includes some info about the pension issue.

<http://sjpba.net/images/billySpanner_march_web.pdf>





 

APRIL EDITION OF THE VANGUARD AVAILABLE ON-LINE
 


Clicking on the link below will take you to the SJPOA's home page. Then click on the image of the Vanguard and a .pdf file will be downloaded to your desktop. Next, double-click on the icon and the on-line edition of the April Vanguard should appear on your screen:
<http://www.sjpoa.com/Vanguard.asp>





 

WEEKLY POLL

 

   



Results from last week's poll...




For the full scope of state and national polling by Scott Rasmussen, click on this link:
<http://www.rasmussenreports.com/>

For the most recent releases, click here:
<http://www.rasmussenreports.com/older_content/home/top_stories/most_recent_articles>





 

MAIL CALL
 

March 29th

Yo Bill,

Good to see you at the PBA meeting. In regards to Ted Sumner, I remember him too, but I didn't see much of him as he went undercover almost immediately after he got out of the Academy as previously mentioned.

On another note, I drove down from Redding to get a new ID card last week and was told they are now issuing them for one year only, not the 4 years as before. I'm guessing that this is to coincide with the annual qualification necessary for CCW authorization. If so, it would seem to put a glitch in Dan Bullock's efforts that would allow for qualifications outside the city so we out-of-towners could avoid long trips to San Jose.

Joe (Suske)
<jsuske@sbcglobal.net>


I called Police Personnel and spoke with Sgt. Ken Lawson about this. Here's the deal: To have a lawful I.D. card with an HR 218 (CCW) endorsement, you will have to come in and qualify once a year, at which time you will be issued a new I.D. card with the endorsement. If you don't want or have a need for the HR 218 endorsement, your I.D. card will be good for 4 years. Ken acknowledged that Chief Moore is aware of the inconvenience this poses for retirees who live out of the area, but until a solution or work-around can be found, this policy is required because of the annual qualification requirement.

So what happens if you come in, qualify and walk out with a one-year I.D. card endorsed for HR 218, but don't come back in a year to renew it? The card would no longer be valid 12 months after it was issued.

Hypothetical question: Let's say your HR 218-endorsed I.D. card has expired, you get stopped on the road or in person, and the officer becomes aware you are in possession of a sidearm. Would he look closely at your card and see that it has expired? Or would he just look at the photo and the HR 218 endorsement, then hand it back and assume you are legal? Who knows?

It's not uncommon for some retirees (perhaps many)  to feel that if they needed to use their weapon in a life-or-death situation that was clearly justified, it's unlikely that having an expired CCW-endorsed I.D. card would be a major issue — except, perhaps, to a civil attorney. But again, who knows?

I would wager that there are a number of retirees who are carrying expired HR 218-endorsed I.D. cards today.

Want to join the conversation? Send your thoughts to
<bilmat@comcast.net>

 

• • • • •

 

March 29th

Bill,
 
I certainly remember Ted Sumner. He was on my MERGE team back in '77. He was a great cop, and his partner in MERGE was Ernie Carter, another great cop. Ted did work undercover in the high schools with another Narc named Charlie Rosseau. Both were very successful. Unfortunately, Rosseau turned to the dark side when a relative of his got popped on drug charges and snitched on Charlie. The investigation showed that he was stealing drugs from the evidence room and having his relative sell them for him. As a result, Rosseau was convicted and went away to prison. The incident changed the way narcotics were booked in and stored in the evidence room. Ted later transferred to MERGE, but left the Department a while later and joined in the family business which sold business machines.
 
And now you know the rest of the story.
 
Regards,
 
Paul Gardner
<paulgardner1757@yahoo.com>


• • • • •

 

March 31st

Bill,

When I left the SJPD in 1987 I lost contact with all but a few fellow cops. My leaving was a sudden act, but necessary at the time. As you post items with names from the past my mind plays tricks on me. I associate the names with my last memory of the person and how they looked at the time. When you post a current picture of someone I knew, it's difficult for me to visualize and update my perception of the individual as the same person I once knew, so all but a few will remain young in my mind and heart.

Bill
(Orville) Yarbrough <billyarbrough36@yahoo.com>


Well put, Bill. I suspect your sentiments apply to many others who moved out of the area and have been out of touch for a couple of decades.
 

• • • • •

 

April 1st.

Dear Bill,

Thanks so much for keeping us informed on matters of interest to us retirees. You and Pyle are a breath of fresh air in a sometime sea of BS. I have made repeated calls to the PD to find out about range qualification for us retirees who live out of town, but it seems they are so overworked that they can't find time to return my calls or messages.

Please know that your effort is much appreciated.

Thanks and God bless.

Ed Caragher, Badge 1343
<edandkay@verizon.net>
Retired and living in So. Cal.


Good to hear from you, Ed. As you may have read in the first Mail Call item above, qualifying for out-of-area retirees is problematic at best, and I have no idea how it's going to be resolved, if it ever is. What I do know is that you will no doubt "Wow" the Range guys if you make the drive north to qualify and show up with that ivory-handled revolver you wore when you were a street cop!

 

• • • • •

 

April 1st

Hi Bill,

A scenario similar to the video below was given to students in one of my granddaughter's high school classes. It was a great learning experience and  generated a lively political debate.

Bill Vincent
<vinniecjv@att.net>

To keep peace in the Family, I have ceased including overt political items in the Farsider. Given the general ideology of the readership, which is heavy on conservatism and light on liberalism, coupled with the fact that virtually everything that comes in is conservative in nature, all the Farsider would be doing is preaching to the choir while pissing off the other 20 percent.

I was on the fence about including the animated video Bill included in his message as it pits the ghost of Ronald Regan against Barack Obama. But because the animation is cleverly done and takes pot shots at several politicians from both sides of the aisle going back to "Tricky Dick" Nixon, I decided to run with it. (6 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3h8O7V-WxWQ&feature=youtu.be>

 

• • • • •

 

April 4th

Bill,

Next parole hearing date for Emile Thompson is in 2022. The Richard Huerta family would like to thank the 680 people who sent letters requesting denial of Thompson's parole. Thanks to Chief Chris Moore and Sgt Jason Dwyer for attending. I'll send more for next week's Farsider.

Greek
(Terry Moudakas)
<tmoudakas@me.com>

 

• • • • •

 

April 4th

Hi Bill,

Just had an interesting experience. Tried to take some money out of my deferred comp with ING. I did so before when we were under ICMA with no problems. Somehow, when the City switched us to ING, they said I was again employed with the City and was therefore unable to pull some of my own money out.

If you're thinking of taking some money out to buy yourself a new motorcycle you may want to check with ING to see what your employment status is. When I called the City I was told they were happy to get me off their books years ago.

Terry Handforth
<jth1659@sbcglobal.net>


Thanks for the advice, Terry, but I'm not invested in ING. My life savings are tied up in solar energy outfits like that slick looking building on Hwy 880 in Fremont, the one with big shiny letters facing the freeway that read "SOLYNDRA." It's just north of the old Nummi plant where the Tesla is being built. (I could have invested in Tesla instead, but what kind of a knucklehead would choose an electric car over shingles that make electricity?) In any case, I'm happy to pass along your suggestion for those readers who have money invested with ING.




 

CUSTOM ACRYLIC BADGE HOLDER
  By Pete Salvi

Rick Bourbons, brother of retired officer Carl Bourbons, owns an acrylic manufacturing shop in San Jose. He has done custom work for Apple, Ferrari and Smith & Wesson. Rick recently made me an acrylic custom case for my badge, and it came out so well he decided to make more and offer them for sale.
 


The case is 5” x 5” and almost 2” thick. The center is routed out to the dimensions of the badge, then hand polished. The front cover is held on by four small magnets, so a slight tug will free the badge.

The cost is $60, and Rick can accommodate any style badge once it is scanned. Those interested can either drop by his shop or mail their order in with an additional $6.00 for USPS priority shipping.

Acrylonics
656 Stockton Ave.
San Jose, CA 95126
(408) 998-8339
<rickborbons@comcast.net>


Rick also made a similar acrylic case for a Smith and Wesson revolver. Instead of magnets, there are locking bolts that require a special tool. A prototype is currently at Smith & Wesson as the company intends to use them in their historical museum.


 

 

 

WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF MARCH 31, 2012

The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox

New Articles

• Photograph purportedly shows a new Boeing 797 blended-wing airliner.
<http://www.snopes.com/photos/airplane/boeing797.asp>

• Photographs purportedly show an area in Japan rebuilt a year after the 2011 earthquake/tsunami.
<http://www.snopes.com/photos/architecture/japan.asp>

• Photograph purportedly shows shooting victim Trayvon Martin flipping off the camera.
<http://www.snopes.com/photos/politics/martin.asp>

• Will a badly-burned girl receive $3 towards her medical care every time her photo is shared on Facebook?
<http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/medical/kuczma.asp>

• Will participating in one-day boycott of gasoline on 15 April 2012 help lower gasoline prices?
<http://www.snopes.com/politics/gasoline/nogas.asp>

• Prayers are requested for Youcef Nadarkhani, a Christian pastor who is facing execution in Iran.
<http://snopes.com/inboxer/prayer/nadarkhani.asp>

• Do Medicare regulations require that doctors ask patients whether they own guns?
<http://www.snopes.com/politics/guns/medicare.asp>

• Did Rick Santorum say that a ban on pornography was 'one of only a few things I see eye to eye on with the Taliban'?
<http://www.snopes.com/politics/santorum/taliban.asp>

• Article details efforts of John Glenn's wife to overcome stuttering.
<http://www.snopes.com/glurge/annieglenn.asp>

• Photograph purportedly shows a brilliantly colored rainbow owl that dwells in China.
<http://www.snopes.com/photos/animals/rainbowowl.asp>

• Account by astronaut Buzz Aldrin describes his taking Communion on the moon.
<http://www.snopes.com/glurge/communion.asp>

• Don't forget to visit our Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news stories from around the world!
<http://www.snopes.com/daily/>


Worth a Second Look

• Judge tells an atheist plaintiff who challenged religious holidays that atheists already have their own holiday: April 1.
<http://www.snopes.com/politics/religion/atheist.asp>


Still Haunting the Inbox

• Check out our 25 Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of what's circulating in the on-line world.
<http://www.snopes.com/info/top25uls.asp>


Fraud Afoot

• Visit our Top Scams page for a list of schemes commonly used by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.
<http://www.snopes.com/fraud/topscams.asp>




 

THE LIGHTER SIDE & OTHER ODDS AND ENDS


Don't forget to click on the "Large Player" icon on the YouTube control panel in the lower right-hand corner of the video when you watch the first clip. If you do, all other YouTube videos should default to the same setting throughout the rest of your session at the computer.

 

• • • • •



A Must Watch: We've presented over a dozen flash mob videos in the Farsider over the past few years. Until now, we felt the "Sound of Music" performance in an Antwerp train station was the best. Well, move over Belgium. The Russians have taken it to the next level with this performance of "Puttin' on the Ritz" sent in by Alice Murphy. The song, by the way, was composed by one of America's most famous songwriters, a Russian-born American Jew by the name of Irving Berlin. (6 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KgoapkOo4vg>

 

• • • • •



For those readers who haven't seen the Antwerp train station "Sound of Music" flash mob performance referenced above — and/or those who would like to see it again — here it is. Since we last included it in the Farsider, it has received several million more views and is now up to 26 million. (4 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7EYAUazLI9k>

 

• • • • •



Flash Mob videos aside, this music video of "Bye Bye Miss American Pie" featuring hundreds if not a thousand or more Grand Rapids' citizens is my all time favorite. Sure, it's lip-dubbed, but that doesn't take away from the magic. While this is also a re-run from an earlier Farsider, it still chokes me up when I watch it and makes me wish it was emblematic of our country today. Sadly, all the happy faces give me the impression it took place on another planet. (9 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPjjZCO67WI>

 

• • • • •



As impressive as that music video might have been in the promotion of Grand Rapids, there are many ways to spur interest in a city. Here's a clip that uses a tech theme to promote Stockholm, Sweden. What's impressive about this video is that the two guys use what can only be described as magical iPads to get their points across. (3 Mins.)



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53_qvMQfvOE

 

• • • • •



For you Michael Jackson fans — all three of you — here's another interesting music video featuring prisoners at a maximum security prison in the Philippines. I'm going to go out on a limb here by saying it's probably something you won't see take place at Pelican Bay anytime soon. (4 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&v=B0Fs7xY96Lw&NR=1>

 

• • • • •



Remember the shock Susan Boyle brought to the world when she first performed on Britain's Got Talent? Although she wasn't destined to win a beauty contest, her music has been an enormous hit and has since sold in the millions. Could this couple known as Jonathan and Charlotte follow in Boyle's footsteps? (7 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kt3Utn4mjeg>

 

• • • • •



Speaking of music, Mike "Big Red" Thompson says this kid reminds him of himself when he was two and danced to the music of Glenn Miller and Tommy Dorsey. (2 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wt824D1Bqg>

 

• • • • •



Remember last week when we used Lucille Ball as an example of a Hollywood celebrity who isn't normally associated with dancing, but certainly knew her way around the dance floor? Here's another example received from Dewey Moore. It's a clip of Jimmy Cagney and Bob Hope that was in the Farsider a couple of years ago but is so enjoyable to watch that we felt it was worth a re-run. Anyone who has seen Cagney in "Yankee Doodle Dandy" knew he could "cut a rug." But how many associate Hope with having a similar talent? What you are about to see took place at a Friar's Club meeting in 1955, when Hope was 52 and Cagney was 56. Wouldn't our country be far better off if Hollywood had more stars like these than the crop that exists today? (4 Mins.)
 

<http://videos2view.net/Hope-Cagney.htm>

 

• • • • •



Speaking of yesteryear, if you are over the age of 60, this clip from Stan Miller should take you back to your youth as it's a compilation of the TV shows most of us grew up watching. Remember Annette Funicello, Barney Fife, Jackie Gleason, Lucy and dozens of others who kept us glued to the TV? (13 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEfotdZCguk>

 

• • • • •



In 1908 — five years after their first historic flight at Kitty Hawk — the Wright Bros. took their then-new and improved, two-place Wright Flyer to Europe for several demonstration flights. Below is a short film captured by a camera in Italy that includes some footage taken from the air after the camera was placed aboard Orville and Wilbur's flyer.

Clicking on the link below will take you to some information about the demonstration flight, then clicking on the blue "See the film" box below the info will start the projector.
(4 Mins.)

<http://www.europafilmtreasures.eu/PY/322/see-the-film-wilbur_wright_and_his_flying_machine>

 

• • • • •



Here is something that Wilbur and Orville couldn't even have dreamed about. It's brand new footage of the maiden flight of the PAL-V Flying Car that is scheduled to go into production in 2014. (2 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SgHSaNtAMjs>

 

• • • • •



Flying machines don't have to be big enough for a person or two to be fun. Think of the kicks you can have scaring the hell out of people walking on the street or playing football or soccer in a big open field if you had one of these Ornithopters. (2 Mins.)

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VVGHX5Vtf0Q>

 

• • • • •



Looking for what is arguably the smallest .45 pistol that money can buy? Bob Tenbrink may have found it. Click on this link, but be patient as the page may take a few moments to load...

<http://www.theblaze.com/stories/heres-the-worlds-smallest-45-concealed-carry-pistol/>

 

• • • • •



"Oops" was the description used by Les Nunes when he sent in this short clip of  a mishap that occurred about a week ago on a snowy mountain pass in Norway. The tow truck driver jumped before it left the road, but the truck driver remained inside the cab all the way down to the canyon below. The good news is that he survived his E-ticket ride, according to Google News. (37 Secs.).
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qf8msnA8EI8>

 

• • • • •

 

Pop Quiz: Can our national bird swim like a duck? The answer to that question can be found at 1:30 into this 2-minute video clip. (You can use your mouse to force the slider bar to the right, but why would you want to?)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87xNpOYOlQ4>

 

• • • • •



Bored? Need some extra dough? If you go looking for a simple job, keep your wits about you and be careful you don't wind up like this "senile cashier." (1 Min.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=19THRdXxmaI>

 

• • • • •



Finally, an airline that caters to people like me and those whose flying experience can turn into a nightmare when there are young kids on board. (2 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/westjet?v=M4SkoJy3D0M>

 

• • • • •

 

"Listen To Your Heart" is an apt title for this clip. It's a short video that rivals the magic of the film, "March of the Penguins," and it is certainly worth a few minutes of your time unless you have ice water coursing through your veins. (5 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkY03n0_sD8>



• • • • •



And finally, were aware that the Navy has granted the wishes of USS Arizona survivors to join their former shipmates when they pass on? It's a fact, and this video titled "Eternal Peace" sent in by Bert Kelsey takes you to Pearl Harbor and explains the process in detail. It is definitely worth a look. (4 Mins.)
 

<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgE2KiPd3xg>

 

• • • • •

 

So goes another week. Thanks for spending some time with us.

C'ya
 

Pic of the Week:
 

A doctor on his morning walk noticed the old lady pictured below sitting
on her front step smoking a cigar, so he walked up to her and said, "I
couldn't help but notice how happy you look. What is your secret?"
 


 

"I smoke ten cigars a day," she said. "Before I go to bed I smoke a big fat joint.
Apart from that, I drink two bottles of Jack Daniels every week and eat only
junk food. On weekends, I pop pills, and except for sex, I don't exercise at all."

"That is absolutely amazing! How old are you?"

"Forty," she replied.

 
   

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This is the message box, using the scroller component.
 

 

 

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