Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster
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RETIRED DEPUTY CHIEF LUIS A. HERNANDEZ
2:00 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 5th
San Jose POA Hall
1151 N. Fourth St.
Appointed June 15, 1963
Retired July 2, 1993
Died Sept. 21, 2014
Luis was admitted to Good Sam on Sept. 13th for internal
bleeding. He then had respiratory problems that led to a
heart attack. The retired Deputy Chief was subsequently
placed on life support in ICU, after which the family
made the difficult decision to end the support.
Following is the obituary we received from his daughter
Christina that will appear in the paper.
"Luis Antonio Hernandez passed away peacefully on
Sunday, September 21, 2014 surrounded by his loving
family. Luis was born in Brady, Texas to Ignacio M. and
Maria V. Hernandez. He graduated from Casa Grande Union
High School in Arizona, San Jose City College, and San
Jose State University, making many lifelong friends
along the way. Luis had a rich professional life. He
took great pride in his 30 years of service with the San
Jose Police Department, retiring as a Deputy Chief in
1993. He was a graduate of the 133rd session of the FBI
National Academy in Quantico, VA. Luis touched the lives
of many as a loving husband, father, grandfather,
brother, uncle, friend, and mentor. He will be
remembered as an honorable man. Luis is survived by his
beloved wife of 47 years, Maria (nee Manriquez).
Together, they enjoyed gardening, traveling, hosting
family gatherings, and doting on their grandchildren. He
is also survived by his daughters, Cristina Harman
(Kirk), Monica Hernandez-Gain (Mike Torsky), and his
cherished grandchildren, Noah Hernandez-Gain, Aaron
Harman, and Diana Harman. In lieu of flowers,
contributions may be made to the San Jose Police
Department Chaplaincy at <www.sjpdchaplain.org>."
FORMER SERGEANT JOHN DIEHL
(No photo available)
Appointed Sept. 13, 1965
Resigned Nov. 8, 1980
Died Sept. 21, 2014
Former SJPD Sgt. John Diehl died from a self-inflicted
gunshot wound a little after 5:00 p.m. last Sunday,
Sept. 21. SJPD units responded to a "shot fired" call at
Lincoln Glen Manor, a senior living facility on Plummer
Ave. in Willow Glen. The call was phoned in by a
neighbor of the facility. John was found deceased on the
porch along with a firearm by the responding officers.
Residents who reside at the facility fall into one of
two groups: those who can care for themselves, and those
who require assistance. Staff told the responding
officers that John was among the former, that he had a
car, and that he was usually visited by a son every
Coincidentally, one of John's two sons called yesterday,
unaware that I already had the information about his
dad. Gavin Diehl, who was the regular visitor each week,
said that a memorial service for his dad would be
restricted to family only.
Police Personnel has no photo of John, nor does one
appear in the 1983 SJPD Commemorative Album. No further
information is available.
FORMER SJPD CHAPLAIN JOHN MAC DONALD
According to Fred Reid, who was a member of the
Chaplaincy Board during its early years, John was one of
two ministers appointed to their respective positions
shortly after the Chaplaincy was created in mid-1977.
John worked with Chaplain Tom Foster, a priest who was
on call to serve Catholic personnel. John left a few
months after Dave Bridgen became SJPD's full-time
chaplain in May 1986. John was a calm and steady man who
was easy to talk with. His personality significantly
helped get the Chaplaincy through some difficult times
during the early years. Before coming to the PD, John
was pastor of the Blossom Hill Baptist Church, which may
no longer exist. At the end of his tenure in San Jose,
John and his wife, Marilyn, retired to Nevada City.
Following is the John MacDonald obituary that appeared
in the Sept. 13th edition of The Union newspaper which
serves Western Nevada County, CA.
John Allan MacDonald went home to be with his Lord and
Savior on Aug. 30, 2014, after enduring the ravages of
Alzheimer’s disease for the past several years.
A celebration of life will be at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday,
Sept. 21, at Sierra Presbyterian Church, 175 Ridge Road,
Nevada City, CA 95959.
John was born in Stockton, Calif., to John and Maude
MacDonald, the second of four children. He attended
Stockton public schools including College of the Pacific
for two years, transferred to Wheaton College, IL,
graduating in 1943 with a degree in philosophy.
He met his wife Marilyn there and they married in 1944.
John attended Westminster Seminary in Philadelphia,
Penn., planning on entering the Navy in the chaplain
program if the war continued. They moved back to
California, settling in the Oakland/Berkeley area where
he finished seminary and began a assistant pastor at
First United Presbyterian Church in Oakland in 1946.
In 1947, the family of three, with daughter Kathleen
born in 1946, moved to the Grass Valley/Nevada City area
with the hope of establishing a church in Nevada City,
which became a reality as Community Baptist Church.
Three more children were born: Daniel in 1948, Janna in
1949 and Karen in 1952.
After leaving Nevada City in 1956, John served as pastor
in several other churches in Northern California: First
Baptist Church, Lakeport; First Baptist Church, Mill
Valley; Blossom Hill Baptist Church in San Jose. They
returned to Nevada City for retirement in 1986.
He worshiped and served at both Community Baptist and
Sierra Presbyterian churches, doing interim work and
being pastor to seniors at Sierra Presbyterian for a
He was active in many organizations over the years,
among them Civil Air Patrol, board member of Jews for
Jesus, chaplain of San Jose Police Department,
ministerial associations in each community, Grass Valley
Male Voice Choir, and Lions’ Club.
He is survived by his wife of 11 years, Mary Ann Smith
MacDonald; children, Kathleen Higgins, Daniel MacDonald,
Janna Schumacher and Karen Driscoll and their spouses;
eight grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 57 years,
Marilyn Rundlett MacDonald, in 2001.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to
Sierra Presbyterian Church or to Jews for Jesus, 60
Haight St., San Francisco, Calif.
MORE ON JOE MAC NAMARA
Memorial Tribute scheduled for
10:00 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 2
California Theater (old Fox Theater)
345 S. First St. (south of San Carlos)
Reception immediately following the Memorial Tribute
San Jose POA Hall
1151 N. Fourth St.
(Additional parking available across Fourth Street)
Mercury News' Memories and Condolences guestbook is
available for those who would like to leave a message
and/or review what others have written. Click
to access it…
send the family a card of condolence, email
a request and I'll reply with Laurie's address in
Carmel. Following is the text of Joe's obituary prepared
by the family that will appear in the paper shortly...
Joseph D. McNamara
A Memorial Tribute to honor retired Chief Joseph D.
McNamara will be open to the public on Thursday, Oct. 2,
at 10:00 a.m., at the California Theater, 345 S. 1st St.
San Jose, with a reception immediately following at the
SJPOA Hall, 1151 N. Fourth St., San Jose 95112.
Joseph McNamara passed away peacefully in his sleep at
age 79 on Sept. 19 at his home with his loving wife
Laurie by his side. The cause of death was pancreatic
cancer. He is survived by Laurie; her son Cameron and
his wife, Heather; son Donald McNamara (Rose); daughters
Lauren McNamara Barrus and Karen McNamara Rust (Paul);
and four wonderful grandchildren, Matthew McNamara,
Dexter and Gabriella Barrus, and Ethan Rust.
McNamara had a life-long love of and fascination with
policing and American society. His thirty-five year
career in law enforcement began as a beat patrolman in
Harlem for the New York Police Department (NYPD). He
rose through the ranks and, in mid-career, was appointed
a Criminal Justice Fellow at Harvard Law School,
focusing on criminal justice research. Following this
appointment he received two LIttauer Fellowships from
the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, obtaining a
Doctorate in Public Administration. Returning to duty
with the NYPD, he was appointed Deputy Inspector in
charge of crime analysis for the City of New York.
In 1973, McNamara became police chief of Kansas City,
Missouri, leading that department into ground-breaking
research and innovative programs. In 1976, he was
appointed police chief for the city of San Jose,
California, where he remained until his retirement in
1991. During his tenure, San Jose became the safest
large city in the country, despite having the fewest
police per capita.
In 1991, McNamara was appointed a Research Fellow at the
Hoover Institution at Stanford, where he continued to
write, speak, and work on the issues dear to him until
Joe McNamara was also a prolific author of five cop noir
novels, including three best-sellers and a respected
crime prevention text; the most recent, published two
years ago, was "Love and Death in Silicon Valley."
The McNamara Memorial Tribute is sponsored by the City
of San Jose, the San Jose Police Department, the San
Jose Police Officers' Assn., and the San Jose Police
Benevolent Assn. The public is invited.
In lieu of flowers, contributions to either of the
following organizations are preferred:
The San Jose Police Chaplaincy
P.O. Box 2202
San Jose, CA 95109
The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
1500 Rosecrans Ave., Suite 200
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
• • • • •
We sent Mercury News columnist Scott Herhold a copy of
last Friday's notification about the passing of Joe
McNamara along with a request that he pass it along to
whoever was responsible for reporting on high profile
deaths. Turns out he chose to report on Joe's passing
himself. This was his column 24 hours later...
a Police Chief for the Ages
—Innovations turned around beleaguered S.J. department—
By Scott Herhold, Columnist
Mercury News — Sept. 20, 2014
When Joe McNamara arrived in San Jose in 1976, it was
like landing behind enemy lines: His first mission as
police chief was to placate a community disturbed at the
heavy-handed tactics of the force. But the strength of
his 15-year tenure as chief came in the way he promoted,
rotated and rewarded his officers. He accomplished it
all with a political verve and skill no one of that era
had seen in the chief’s job before, and he ushered San
Jose and its police force into an era of national
prominence in public safety.
Joe McNamara in 1996
McNamara, 79, died at 4 a.m. Friday at his Monterey-area
home, with his wife, Laurie, and a caregiver beside him.
He had battled cancer for several years. In a family
where the men often died young of heart disease, he knew
that he had enjoyed a long life. There was no word
Friday about memorial and funeral plans.
After retiring as chief in 1991 — he joked that he was a
step ahead of the posse — McNamara became a novelist and
a fellow at the Hoover Institution.
Always outspoken, he was known for his tart criticism of
the nation’s “War on Drugs,” which he felt was too
draconian. His last book two years ago was entitled
“Love and Death in Silicon Valley,” about a retired
sheriff hunted by local gangsters.
“Joe McNamara was a giant in law enforcement,
innovative, community-oriented and strong,” said former
Mayor Tom McEnery. “He was pivotal in building a modern
police department from a demoralized and challenged one.
We owe him much.”
The San Jose police force of the mid-1970s was not
without talent: The department had several mid-level
sergeants and lieutenants who showed promise of moving
upward. But it was marked by the reputation of the
so-called “cowboys,” who wreaked havoc among minorities.
Into this cauldron stepped a 41-year-old Ph.D. who had
just completed a gig as chief in Kansas City and had
begun his career as a New York City beat cop. The new
chief easily could have been labeled an egghead who
didn’t understand the street.
McNamara met endlessly with departmental critics. He
risked the wrath of the rank and file by sending out
news releases when he imposed discipline. He introduced
a bilingual staff to the internal affairs unit and
improved the technology of communications.
But McNamara also backed his officers, guiding them away
from the billy club by skillful promotions that changed
the department permanently. And he stood up for them
when it came to pay raises, helping to cement the
loyalty of the police union. One of the chief’s
innovations was the so-called “Rule of 10,” which
allowed him to pick from the top 10 candidates for a
coveted job — say, lieutenant or captain.
In the old days, a chief would go straight down the
list: McNamara’s new rule allowed him far more latitude
to pick officers he believed were skilled at handling
Much of what he did was controversial. At one time, the
police union even delivered a vote of no confidence in
the chief. But in retrospect, even his critics came to
“It wasn’t until years later that people recognized that
McNamara was the best police administrator in the
country,” said retired police Sgt. Dan McTeague.
Though he held a doctorate in public administration from
Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, McNamara
was guided by political instinct honed in New York’s
rough streets: The chief would typically announce
promotions around 3 or 4 p.m. on Fridays.
When he was asked why, he explained that the officers
who had been passed over were so disappointed that they
needed the weekend to recover. It was far better to
deliver the bad news on Friday afternoon than nourish
Another McNamara innovation went by the stodgy rubric of
“career development,” which was his code for breaking up
the fiefs that once ruled the department.
The chief insisted on rotating officers who had
previously settled into coveted assignments like
homicide, vice or the motorcycle squad. The result was a
knowledgeable patrol force that knew the intricacies of
dealing with a homicide or sexual assault.
When he promoted an officer to an important position,
McNamara would frequently ask for a private conversation
to pass on one of his fundamental rules of management.
“Remember,” he’d say, “sometimes personal needs are more
important than departmental needs.”
By that, the chief meant that a supervisor needed to be
aware of troubles in an officer’s personal life — a
divorce, say, or a kid enmeshed in drugs. If an officer
was given a break to deal with personal needs, McNamara
believed, he would be a far more loyal employee in the
None of this is to say that the chief was without guile.
For many years, he insisted that San Jose did not really
have a gang problem: He did not want to give the gangs
And when one intemperate councilman was arrested for
public drunkenness, McNamara had no problem when the
tape of his angry encounter with cops was leaked to
reporters. He disliked the idea of his officers taking
“I have to laugh, remembering my first five years,”
McNamara told me in 2012. “It hurt to know that people
hated me. Now they’ve forgotten all of that.”
• • • • •
A second, different article about Joe's passing by the
Mercury News was syndicated and reported by various
other media sources such as PoliceOne.com.
Iconic Former San Jose Police Chief Dies of Cancer
"He was known by his colleagues for his tireless public
service and deep commitment to promote ideas that
to positive solutions pertaining to law enforcement"
By Robert Salonga
Mercury News — Sept. 20, 2014
SAN JOSE — Joseph D. McNamara, the iconic former chief
who helped usher San Jose and its police force into an
era of national prominence in public safety, has died
after his latest bout with cancer.
McNamara, 79, died in his sleep about 4 a.m. Friday his
Monterey-area home. He had been diagnosed with
pancreatic cancer last Christmas Eve.
Since leaving police work, McNamara was a fixture in
police academia, and at the time of his death was a
research fellow with the Hoover Institution at Stanford
University, which released a statement in cooperation
with his family.
"Joe was a rare person: a man who not only served as a
revered police chief, but who had uncommon insights,"
read a statement from the institution. "He was known by
his colleagues for his tireless public service and deep
commitment to promote ideas that contributed to positive
solutions pertaining to law enforcement. Our thoughts
and prayers are with his wife, Laurie, and his
McNamara served as police chief from 1976 until his
retirement in 1991. Before coming to San Jose, he was
chief in Kansas City. He began his career as a Harlem
beat cop for the New York Police Department.
"He really laid the groundwork for turning an average
police department struggling with community issues into
one of the most progressive agencies in the country,"
said former chief Rob Davis, who joined SJPD near the
start of McNamara's tenure and later led the department
from 2004 to 2010.
Indeed, when McNamara came to SJPD after three years as
chief in Kansas City, the department's reputation was
that of a brutish force, particularly in its dealing
with minority communities. He is credited with making
sweeping changes to professionalize the department,
though the abrupt new direction shook up so many
longstanding practices that the rank-and-file gave him a
vote of no confidence.
"I have to laugh, remembering my first five years,"
McNamara told this newspaper in 2012. "It hurt to know
that people hated me. Now they've forgotten all of
McNamara is credited with diversifying the police force
with respect to minorities and women, and reorganizing
the department to focus on community-based policing and
heal existing rifts, which included introducing
bilingual staff to the internal-affairs unit.
"He humanized the community to the police department,
and humanized the police department to the community,"
said Davis, who last saw McNamara two months ago at a
police conference in San Francisco.
McNamara is also credited with making SJPD among the
first departments to aggressively use crime data to
deploy officers and install computer terminals in patrol
cars to access that data in real time.
Davis remembered as a rookie cop the acrid department
atmosphere McNamara inherited, and marvels now at how
many of the reforms the chief introduced are taken for
granted as standard police practice given how much
resistance they initially faced.
That was embodied in McNamara's moves to discipline and
demote misbehaving officers, often publicly, as gesture
of transparency and accountability to an uneasy
"It's interesting to me when I came on how people were
grousing about him. He professionalized the department,"
Davis said. "We would have professionalized ourselves,
but he helped us be 20 years ahead."
McNamara was one of the first prominent law enforcement
officials to criticize the war on drugs. He would later
go on to advocate for the legalization of marijuana.
Sgt. Jim Unland, president of the San Jose Police
Officers' Association, was hired at the end of
McNamara's tenure as part of a hiring surge that
McNamara fought for as crime rates spiked nationally.
Unland noted McNamara's zeal in advocating for the
department at City Hall.
"Chief McNamara was a visionary leader who put public
safety first and spoke the truth to political power,"
Unland said. "He will be missed."
After retiring, in addition to his work at the Hoover
Institution, McNamara served as a consultant to the U.S.
Department of Justice, State Department and FBI. He held
a bachelor's degree from the John Jay College of
Criminal Justice in New York and a doctorate in public
administration from Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of
He was also a crime novelist, with his latest title,
"Love and Death in Silicon Valley," released two years
McClatchy-Tribune News Service
• • • • •
NEW YORK TIMES
described Joe as the "Father of Community Policing."
Joe's passing was also covered by the
This is how Joe's death was reported by the
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE
Then there was this article in the
LOS ANGELES TIMES
If you choose to read how the late Chief's death was
SAN JOSE INSIDE,
make sure you also review the readers' comments at the
bottom of the article.
This item from last Sunday's I.A. column in the paper
caught our eye…
Mercury News — Sept. 21, 2014
San Jose Police Pension ‘Soap Opera’ in Reruns?
If your weekly viewing of “As the San Jose City Council
Turns” is looking like a rerun, it certainly could have
The drama that’s been playing out for the past two years
— the current council majority defending pension reform
against a union onslaught of criticism that it has
prompted an officer exodus — was at the forefront of a
vote over a new police staffing retention plan.
As such, the latest cop staffing measure unveiled by
Mayor Chuck Reed, his preferred mayoral
Sam Liccardo and others was approved by a 6-4 council
vote Tuesday even as council members openly acknowledged
that it wouldn’t amount to anything. That’s because the
measure requires police union approval that isn’t going
to come amid an election. The plan would delay
implementation of a key portion of Measure B — in which
current cops would have to pay more from their pensions
— for an additional year from its scheduled start date
of July 2015. That provision had been struck down in a
lower court but is being appealed.
In exchange for the delay, the city would allow police
who are about to retire to continue working patrol duty
while collecting a piece of their pension. Over the next
three years, about 170 cops are scheduled to retire,
compounding the police force staffing problems.
The approval means the city can negotiate the deal with
the police union, though the council members supported
by the union — Ash Kalra , Xavier Campos, Kansen Chu and
Don Rocha — all voted against it. In other words, it’s
While the debate hasn’t changed, council members got
emotional at the council meeting.
“It just breaks my heart,” Kalra said, decrying pension
reform’s effect on police. But Councilman Johnny Khamis
would have none of it, saying he was “tired of it” and
“can’t let it stand,” blaming the police union for
officer staffing woes.
• • • • •
Then there was this piece
in yesterday's paper about a judge's decision that
adversely impacts our firefighter cousins who make up
the other half of our Police and Fire retirement fund.
City Wins Pension Battle for New Hires
—Arbitration decision reduces benefits for future
By Mike Rosenberg
Mercury News — Sept. 24, 2014
SAN JOSE — In the latest battle with its employee
unions, the city of San Jose has won a long struggle
with its firefighters over reducing pension benefits for
new hires — several years after voters approved the
The final arbitration decision, announced this week,
will save taxpayers millions of dollars compared to more
generous retirement plans previously given to
firefighters. It’s a victory for Mayor Chuck Reed, the
city’s chief pension reformer, and his fiscal
conservative allies that make up a majority of the City
Council, who have seen the public costs for employee
retirement skyrocket in the last decade. But the
firefighters union says the cuts will lead to fewer job
applicants, much in the way recruitment has slowed for
the short-staffed police department, which is dealing
with the same pension cuts.
Retired Judge Catherine Gallagher, the arbitration board
chair, made the ruling nearly four years after voters
approved a second “tier” of reduced retirement benefits
for new employees, and more than two years after voters
set limits on those pensions. Gallagher noted in siding
with the city that the voter-approved measures prevented
her from adopting anything that increased taxpayer
The firefighters are the last of 11 city unions to
implement the pension plan changes for new hires, while
voter-approved cuts to current employees’ retirement
plans remain tied up in court.
The firefighters had seen their contract with the city
expire at the end of June and were waiting for the
arbitrator’s decision before starting negotiations,
arguing the cuts were illegal and inferior to statewide
standards. Before arbitration, the two sides had
negotiated unsuccessfully for more than a year.
The changes mean newly-hired firefighters can retire at
age 60 with a pension of up to 65 percent of their
salary. Current firefighters can still retire at age 50
with up to 90 percent of their salary.
In response to the arbitrator’s decision, the
firefighters union proposed a 2016 ballot measure that
would provide new firefighters with pensions that are
about halfway between those two plans — allowing them to
retire at age 55 with 75 percent of salary. That
proposal is expected to be denied by the current
11-member City Council, though the mayor’s seat and up
to five council spots will turn over after the Nov. 4
“City Hall is hell bent on doing to the fire department
what they have done to the police department and the
results will be the same; firefighters will leave San
Jose and 911 emergency response times will increase,”
firefighters union president Joel Phelan said in a
Attention Police Retirees
retired police officers, we need your help. Your
benefits will continue to be attacked and eroded if Sam
Liccardo is elected Mayor. After attending recent
negotiation talks with city officials, we believe they
have your Retiree Healthcare in their sites. Last year
you all remember how the lowest cost plan was changed
driving up your monthly health care premiums by hundreds
of dollars. If San Jose does not see some political
change in the near future, those costs may only be the
This is what we think the City wants to do next. They
are looking at options that would take away the retiree
healthcare benefit from active employees. Once the
active members lose this benefit, retirees would be next
with the aim of moving retirees into the Affordable Care
Act (Obama Care). Alex Gurza is quoted in the Mercury:
"But in San Jose, the country's 10th-largest city, staff
said they wouldn't rule out the idea, at least for its
2,100 retirees under 65."
"Although we have not yet evaluated moving under-65
retirees to health care exchanges, we will be continuing
to explore all options, including those that may be
available through the Affordable Care Act," said Deputy
City Manager Alex Gurza."
We need you and your fellow retirees to help us protect
your benefits! With only six weeks left before the
November election, we need help with our walking and
telephone campaign. Both Fire and Police have begun our
precinct walking efforts in support of Dave Cortese,
Raul Peralez, and Paul Fong. To say that police's
turnout has been anything but disappointing would be an
understatement. We are actively working to encourage the
active officers to walk, but they are exhausted. After
years of pay reductions, benefit cost increases, and
mandatory overtime, they are struggling just to get
enough sleep before the start of their next shift.
Many of our actives have scheduling challenges. You all
remember what it was like to work midnights in patrol
and then try and get some sleep before your next shift.
Today our midnight officers are routinely held over onto
dayshift as part of the mandatory overtime/minimum
staffing model that has been implemented. We need our
retirees to become more active in this campaign.
We will continue to coordinate our walks with Fire.
These walks are based out of the POA and begin every
Saturday and Sunday at 10:00 AM and again at 1:00 PM for
a second shift. You will be done by 1:00 PM or earlier.
Throughout all of the Measure B litigation, the active
employees have supported you. We are asking for your
If the weekends don't work for you, we are also walking
every Monday and Thursday starting at 5 PM out of the
POA. All times for walking are flexible if you want to
come a little early, we are there, or if you arrive
late, that is fine too. Please contact James Gonzales at
for a weekday walking schedule being run by Fire. If you
cannot walk, at least donate to the campaigns. Even if
it's $25, it helps.
You can use the POA's address for reporting purposes:
1151 N. 4th St.
San Jose, CA 95112
THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF THE CITY AND SJPD
An excellent article
penned by POA President Jim Unland appeared on the Op/Ed
page of Tuesday's paper. But will the citizens of San
Jose pay attention?
Measure B Really Has Decimated Police Ranks
By Jim Unland, President, San Jose Police Officers'
Special to the Mercury News — Sept. 23, 2014
To make the claim that the San Jose police force has not
been decimated by Measure B is a disingenuous attempt to
rewrite history. One only has to look at the words of
departing officers in hundreds of resignation letters to
understand how the divisive pension reform measure has
forced an exodus of hundreds of officers — with
calamitous results for public safety.
Mayoral candidate Sam Liccardo made this claim in a
recent op-ed on public safety. He is wrong. Hundreds of
officers who once staffed the disbanded burglary
investigations unit, the extinct auto-theft unit, the
vanquished Violent Crimes Enforcement Team and our
understaffed patrol division have left.
According to a report by San Jose City Auditor Sharon
Erickson, the result of the police exodus has increased
emergency 911 response times. Priority 2 response times
now exceed 20 minutes (the goal is 11 minutes), and
Priority 1 response times now exceed the 6 minute target
in 13 of the 16 police districts. This is unacceptable
for a city that was once the safest big city in the
The fact that many officers left before Measure B passed
does not mean the measure is not the cause of our
The two-year run up to Measure B and all the negative
messaging that went with it played a significant part in
those officers’ decisions.
From the date the first Measure B draft was unveiled in
May of 2011, more than 400 police officers have either
resigned or retired. Think of it as a hurricane:
Thousands will flee an area before a storm makes
landfall; you can’t count among the affected only those
who flee after it arrives.
Liccardo wrote, “What of Measure B’s impact on the
police force? The number of sworn officers dropped from
1,065 to 1,023 in the two years since its
implementation, a net loss of 42 officers, as new hires
offset some who left.”
The casual reader might think that only 42 officers have
left since Measure B’s passage. In fact, 270 have either
resigned or retired since then. The alarming consequence
is that for the first time in the department’s history,
more officers are leaving than we can hire and retain.
The police department cannot fill its academy because we
cannot attract enough qualified candidates. The first
academy class after Measure B was adopted began with 50
new hires, but just over a year later, only 13 remain.
The two most recent police academies were only able to
fill 29 of 60 available slots.
The city council’s policies have taken a toll. Our
time-tested model of proactive community policing can no
longer be practiced because officers scramble from 911
call to call, leaving little time to interact with the
community. No predictive policing model can replace an
officer meeting with the community and strengthening
We agree with Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese,
Liccardo’s opponent for mayor, who has called for
retaining portions of Measure B that were found legal,
preserving $25 million in savings already included in
the budget and establishing a competitive Tier 2
retirement plan that would reduce pension costs and
allow for the rebuilding of our police department.
Legal pension reform is the solution to recruiting and
retaining police officers, not continuing litigation
over Measure B.
Four hundred former San Jose police officers, six former
police chiefs and I will tell you that only Cortese’s
approach can save our police department.
Jim Unland is president of the San Jose Police Officers
Association. He wrote this for this newspaper.
• • • • •
Herhold's column in
today's paper about Police Auditor LaDoris Cordell's "shallts"
is interesting in that Councilman Pete Constant
disagrees with the walking civilian review board.
Watchdog of Police Won’t Fit One Mold
By Scott Herhold
Mercury News — Sept. 25, 2014
Very often, the most interesting issues to come before
the San Jose City Council are not matters of ideology or
money or land. They’re personal, and in that sense, they
ultimately become political.
Such was the case this week with a proposal from
Independent Police Auditor LaDoris Cordell, who
attempted to persuade the council to approve a set of
qualifications for the next auditor. This in itself was
a little strange. Cordell has not quit her job, though
at 64 — 65 later this year — the fit former judge is
among the older ranks of city employees (Mayor Chuck
Reed is 66.) The police auditor, who has gotten
favorable reviews for her work over the past 4years,
serves as a check on the Police Department’s internal
affairs investigations, which have sometimes been found
In an item originally put on the consent calendar with
Reed’s signature, Cordell essentially wanted the council
to lock in the qualifications for her successor before a
new council takes office at the turn of the year.
Among her “shalts” — the document had a Ten Commandments
ring — were that the independent police auditor had to
be a lawyer with criminal law experience, had to have at
least 10 years separation from a police department if
once a cop, and could not have immediate family members
who were police officers, including grandparents.
Cordell called these requirements “absolutely
imperative” to maintain the credibility and independence
of the office. But with the help of the mayor, she was
proposing an unreasonable straitjacket. And Councilman
Pete Constant, an ex-cop who has voted against his
former colleagues on pensions, took her on.
Constant argued persuasively that there were plenty of
non-lawyers who could do the police auditor’s job — a
veteran investigator familiar with police practice, say,
or a psychologist who knew how to ask good questions. He
insisted that the 10-year period was too draconian. “We
have created a box that is too small,” he said.
Ultimately, with one small tweak — it made the ban
against being cops apply only to the current status of
family members — the council sided with Cordell on a 6-4
vote. Council members Sam Liccardo, Pierluigi Oliverio
and Johnny Khamis voted with Constant on the losing
The dissenters had a point. Being a lawyer is no
guarantee of effectiveness. A Cordell predecessor,
Teresa Guerrero- Daley, a lawyer who is now a judge,
seemed eager not to antagonize cops. What’s needed is a
well-organized person who knows how to ask tough
questions. Cordell, who is called “Judge” around City
Hall, makes an error that many successful people do: She
assumes the job must be done in the same way she has
But we already suffer from over-credentialism in
America. It is one reason why student debt is so
bloated. There are different approaches to being an
independent auditor. And the best thing the next council
could do is quietly dump these handcuffs before they
seek Cordell’s successor.
I was hoping to see a letter defending the action by the
PD in returning the MRAP. It apparently didn't
materialize, either because your readers all agreed with
me or the politicians, et al, don't read the Farsider.
I guess I'll just have to contain my frustrations in not
being able to, as President Obama says, demolish,
destroy and contain the fuzzy thinkers now at large in
the City of San Jose.
Seems strange that there
haven't been many requests from the local politicians to
receive the Farsider. Perhaps they have been forewarned
that they are often the target of some literary arrows.
• • • • •
I too sent a letter to the Merc regarding its failure to
acknowledge the press event with the former chiefs. My
letter was almost identical to yours, and guess what?
They didn't use it. I also sent an email to Scott
Herhold as I knew him from when I worked in the Mayor's
Office. Included is the email I sent to him, followed by
his very weak response. Hopefully you'll have better
luck than I did.
Chris' email to Scott
I've searched the Merc the last few days for any kind of
article regarding the former SJPD chiefs' press
conference about the mayoral race and I couldn't find
anything. Did I miss something, or did the Merc
purposely ignore this because it may hurt their chosen
candidate? Now that I live in AZ, I don't have a vested
interest in San Jose, but I still enjoy watching the
game. The Police Dept. has been ruined to a point that
it will take many years to come back. It is on life
support now, and I'm afraid that after the election, the
plug will be pulled.
I don't really know the story. In general, I know that
we're way down in staff (from 400-plus to less than 75),
so they may have decided that it wasn't something to
Hope all is well,
• • • • •
I have to say (again) how much I appreciate you
including me in the distribution of the Farsider. Thank
Regarding the La Bamba clip, I am a big fan of the Play
for Change movement. It is comprised of 185 musicians
from 31 countries. My favorite so far is not a
compilation like La Bamba, but a track released by an
American Bluesman, Keb' Mo’ called “The Old Me Better."
It should make most every married man smile just a bit.
also for providing the links to aftermath of the
Benghazi attack. I cannot fathom how our Ambassador and
three other patriots were murdered, our diplomatic
mission was pillaged, and all we hear are crickets.
That’s quite an employee retention policy they have at
the Department of State.
Last year Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-California) sponsored a
bill nominating both Ty Woods and Glenn Dougherty for
the Congressional Gold Medal, not the Medal of Honor.
The bill was referred to to the House Financial Services
Committee. I don’t know if that’s the path for all
nominations like this, or if this got detoured so it can
be lost, forgotten or buried.
Many think they were contracted security and thus
obligated to protect, but they were actually on a
mission to locate and “purchase” military heavy weapons
from the black market in Libya.
Remember, those guys were not in Benghazi when the
attack began; they chartered a plane and flew from
Tripoli against orders when they heard there was an
attack on the Consulate.
I hope Karma is a bitch to those responsible.
Thank you again,
Mike Young, KAUST, Saudi Arabia
• • • • •
Former PBA President John
Carr (Sr.) brought the following candidate for judge to
this month's general membership meeting as a guest. He
addressed those in attendance and was well received...
I work on the Matthew Harris for Judge campaign. John
Carr suggested that I email you with information about
Matt’s campaign for The Farsider.
I’m not sure what information you would like, but I’ve
attached his logo and below is a short write up. Please
let me know if you would like something different.
Thank you very much for the opportunity, and for the
Matt Harris’s broad experience, qualifications and
demeanor have earned him strong support from Judges,
Elected Leaders, Law Enforcement and the Community for
Superior Court Judge Seat #24. He has the experience and
qualifications to immediately conduct criminal felony
trials and preside over civil or other noncriminal
cases. For over 22 years, Matt has served on the
majority of the DA’s major felony trial teams and has
tried and won many jury verdicts including homicides,
sexual assaults, robberies, kidnapping and gangs. As a
judge, he will provide fair and impartial decisions on
all matters before him without consideration of or
engaging in irrelevant matters. He will make decisions
based on the law and facts.
• Award winning, highly experienced and respected
Prosecutor of 23 years
• Handled homicides, including capital homicide, gang
crimes, sexual assaults, DUI murder and major white
•Community Prosecutor stopping crime by improving
neighborhood quality of life
• Special Assistant U.S. Attorney prosecuting crimes in
federal district court
• Extensive civil litigation experience: Consumer
Protection, Asset Forfeiture, and Civil Trial Firm
• Endorsed by 27 current and retired Judges, 16 Law
Enforcement Associations and the last 3 District
• • • • •
Hope all is well with you. Realizing we live in the age
of hypocrites in our public lives, we've almost lost
track of what's real and true and have become casually
complacent. We almost expect those is the public eye to
be twisting and manipulating, double-talking, showing up
for this cause, then running for cover from that one,
because it is just too hot or too uncomfortable
Take for example the recent National Football League
scandals. Child beating, girlfriend sluggings; the list
is long. Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson, Jonathan Dwyer, Greg
Hardy plus more to come, and all in just the last ten
days or so. I'm not going to write about their crimes
here, that's up to the justice system now. I just wanted
to ask a couple of simple questions that have to do with
public figures and talking truth and such.
Where are the people with the loudest voices when you
actually need them? Where are the headline grabbers and
the fact twisters? Where are the speech makers and the
bull horn ranters? Where are the leaders of the marches?
Don't they have something to yell about regarding this?
Where are the street blockers? Where are the chant
repeaters? Where are the "Not Guilty" sign wavers? Where
the heck are the rallies and the rabble rousers? Where
are the out-of-state agitators?
And for gosh sake, where are the two big hot air
balloons? Please tell me. Where is Jessie Jackson? Where
is Al Sharpton?
I rest my case.
Having your say is what
the Mail Call column is about, Dave. As for Sharpton and
Jackson, my day was going fine until your brought up
• • • • •
When Joseph McNamara became Chief of Police at San Jose,
I was working in Narco. He became aware of studies I was
conducting at the University of San Francisco that dealt
with the impact of drug use on the crime index of a
community, and requested copies of the research as it
progressed. McNamara would ask a question now and
then—questions that would assist me with project—but he
never let on as to his thoughts or opinions at the time.
During those short meetings in his office there were
times when I wanted to ask some deep and thought
provoking questions as to his recent administrative
decisions—like “what the #@&% are you doing?” He
apparently knew what he was doing.
Shortly after he retired from San Jose, McNamara and I
crossed paths and he was instrumental in involving me in
several of his activities. When Sally and I last visited
Joe and Laurie, they had just sold their home and were
happily preparing to move to the Carmel area.
There were a few subjects Joe and I never did come into
agreement on, one being gun control—after all, I do live
in Texas now. What we did agree on was the negative
consequences of the War on Drugs. Joe’s fight in this
arena may well be his legacy, as best explained in the
attached recent article.
to access the article.
NEW RETIREES' ASSN. NEWSLETTER AVAILABLE
to access the Sept. edition of the Billy & Spanner
SJPD HISTORY BOOK NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE AND FROM THE POA
All sales will benefit the SJPD Historical Society. The
book went on sale on Monday of this week and is
available at most book stores as well as on-line at
Amazon and Barnes & Noble. You can also shave 5 percent
off the $21.95 cost by purchasing the book at the POA
THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES
Sept. 16 through Sept. 23
Bill Clinton gave a speech this weekend. He criticized
Republicans for spending all their time dissing
President Obama. But people from Iowa missed the rest of
the speech because they were busy looking up the word "dissing."
Hillary Clinton also gave a speech in Iowa. She fueled
speculation that she’ll run for president when she
admitted that she's “thinking about it.” And next week,
she'll be “thinking about it” when she's in New
Hampshire before she spends a few days “thinking about
it” in Florida.
This week Scotland will vote on whether it wants to
leave the United Kingdom. If Scotland votes "yes," it
will also leave the European Union and NATO and be
responsible for defending itself. Or as Vladimir Putin
put it, "I got dibs!"
Of course if Scotland does break up with England, it’ll
just do what everyone does: Stalk them on Facebook.
President Obama hosted a picnic at the White House today
for members of Congress. Obama said it was a great
opportunity to gather every member of Congress in one
place — so he could turn on the sprinklers. Payback!
The White House picnic was actually held one year after
it was canceled. Last year the president had too much
stuff going on to make time for a picnic, whereas now he
just doesn't care anymore.
Hillary Clinton's supporters are calling on her to be
more herself, after some of her recent appearances
seemed to be too scripted. Hillary said, "I don’t know
where you guys get this stuff. Shrug and shake head."
During President Obama’s visit to an elementary school
yesterday, one little boy actually asked him if he ever
fought in the Civil War. Obama told the boy he did not,
but he re-enacts it with Congress all the time.
Obama actually told the student, “No I was born in
1961.” Then the kid said, “Where?” Then Obama said, “Uh,
Matt Damon is planning to shoot a fourth “Bourne
Identity” movie. It tells the story of an actor who
gradually remembers he has four kids to send to college.
A new study found that artificial sweeteners in diet
soda might actually increase some people's chances of
obesity. Doctors recommend people just drink water,
while people said, “No. We’re drinking diet soda. You
guys figure it out.”
Today is my 40th Birthday. And I’m not the only one
having a birthday. This week, Iowa Senator Chuck
Grassley celebrated his 81st birthday by going on a
6-mile run. Seriously? I just got winded walking out
here from backstage.
During a speech this week, Joe Biden referred to Asia as
the “Orient,” just hours after he apologized for using
another term that offended Jewish people. The White
House calls Biden's remarks “unfortunate,” while Obama
calls them “a welcomed distraction.”
That’s right, Joe Biden referred to Asia as the
“Orient,” and also offended Jewish people. Which means
he's one “pull my finger” away from being my grandpa on
There were some major security issues at the White House
over the weekend. On Friday, a guy got to the front
doors of the White House, and on Saturday another guy
jumped over the White House fence. Officials are
wondering why it's so easy to get in, while Obama is
wondering why it's so hard to get out.
Chicago is reversing its plan to name a high school
after President Obama after it received multiple
complaints from people in the community. I guess parents
were afraid their kids would spend eight years at the
school and still not get anything done.
There was another round of leaked photos of nude
celebrities this weekend, which included Mary-Kate
Olsen. Mary-Kate said she was extremely embarrassed.
Then her twin sister Ashley said, "Yeah, me too."
Some sad news from the world of reality TV. Mama June
and Sugar Bear from “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” are
splitting up. Their lawyers are citing unintelligible
The White House has been having big security issues
lately, after an intruder actually managed to jump the
fence and make it inside. The White House actually said
they will start locking the doors. When asked if he
wanted a key, Biden said, "I'm fine just using the
In an interview, Bill Clinton hinted that his daughter
Chelsea’s baby is due in early October. Though it got
weird when reporters asked if it's a boy or a girl, and
Hillary said, "I haven't decided yet."
House Speaker John Boehner is facing criticism over a
recent speech where he suggested that unemployed people
are lazy. Boehner would clarify his statements, but he
was on his second two-week break of the month.
Tomorrow night is the premiere of the new game show
“Sports Jeopardy.” It’s got some pretty difficult clues
like, “This NFL player ISN’T being investigated for a
crime right now.”
Last year there was a slight increase in the U.S. prison
population. It's expected to increase even more once the
NFL increases to 34 teams.
A group that worships Satan wants to give educational
activity books to Florida children. However, officials
say it violates two of Florida's strongest taboos —
Satan and education.
Street gangs are toning down their colors in order to be
less noticeable to law enforcement. So now there are
three gangs walking around in L.A. — the Crips, the
Bloods, and the Earth Tones.
Problems for the NFL continue. Last week Nike suspended
Ray Rice's contract and today they suspended Adrian
Peterson's contract. So now Nike is down to Oscar
Pistorius and Kim Jong Un.
A Michigan funeral home is offering a drive-thru viewing
option. Or as they're calling it, "Jack Actually in the
Archaeologists discovered a skeleton couple that have
been holding hands for 700 years. Hey dude, it's been
700 years. Make a move!
A member of the Baltimore Ravens has retired from
football so he can donate a kidney to his brother. Since
receiving the new kidney, the brother has committed six
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has put his post-college
resume online for everyone to see. And it worked. He
starts tomorrow at Quiznos.
A recent report says the majority of Americans cannot
name the three branches of government — Judicial,
Executive, and Legislative. To make it easier, the
government is renaming those branches Kim, Khloe, and
The Islamic State is releasing its own "Grand Theft
Auto" style of video game. In their version, the worse
crime you can commit is letting a woman drive the car.
A man scaled the White House fence and ran across the
lawn to the front door. Is it just me or is "The Amazing
Race" running out of ideas?
The White House has re-evaluated its security and today
they announced they'll start locking the front door.
They're also going to start asking who's there when
The CEO of JetBlue announced he'll step down in
February. Of course, it being JetBlue his actual
departure may be delayed until March.
In another celebrity photo leak, nude photos of Kim
Kardashian have been posted to the Internet. Kim said
she'd be very embarrassed if only she knew how.
People are still talking about this guy who hopped the
fence and ran into the White House. President Obama is
calling for a security crackdown. In fact, today he
announced a new punishment for anyone who breaks into
the White House: Now you have to be president.
Kris Jenner has filed for divorce from Bruce Jenner.
There were rumors of another woman. So Bruce explained,
"I am the other woman."
Students at a high school in Detroit sent a YouTube
video to the Pope asking him to visit their school. They
want to see if the Pope can visit Detroit and still
believe there's a God.
Honey Boo Boo's father, Sugar Bear, is denying charges
that he cheated on Honey Boo Boo's mother, Mama June.
It's being called the worst children's bedtime story of
It's the first day of fall. The leaves are falling and
so is the confidence in Roger Goodell.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell finally held a press
conference on Friday. It was a tough press conference.
They carried the guy out on a stretcher.
The situation in the NFL is awful. It's gotten so bad
that even the Redskins want to change the commissioner's
Today was the opening of the U.N. General Assembly.
There were 100 representatives from 135 nations in New
York City — all here to pay tribute to Derek Jeter.
The United States has launched airstrikes against ISIS.
It's being called "Operation Approval Ratings."
It's bad enough when you're president, but now there are
guys hopping the fence. They beefed up security at the
White House. Isn't it about time? People were waiting in
line to hop the fence.
This guy gets all the way to the front porch of the
White House. So they beefed it up. The security people
added to the front door one of the sliding chain things.
This guy hopped the fence, ran across the White House
lawn, and almost got inside the White House. And the
Republicans said, "Well, let's nominate this guy."
In New York City today, the 69th version of the United
Nations General Assembly was called to order. Manhattan
was jammed with traffic, streets were filled with people
wearing strange clothes and yelling in every conceivable
language. Then the U.N. got started.
The U.N. delegates fan out across Manhattan to take
advantage of diplomatic immunity. They do dangerous
stuff just because they can, like get speeding tickets.
They can even take pictures of Alec Baldwin.
It's always fun when people who can't stand each other
come together, make speeches, and glare at each other in
silent hatred, knowing they won't have to see each other
for a whole year. It's like international Thanksgiving.
The new iPhone is going to be the biggest one yet. If
iPhones were foreheads, this one would be Nicole Kidman.
If they were disappointing basketball teams, this one
would be the Lakers.
At San Francisco's airport last Tuesday, customs
officials confiscated 20 giant millipedes. You should
never bring a millipede on an airplane. There's just not
enough leg room.
Tonight was the big finale of "America's Got Talent."
It's my favorite TV talent show, if you don't count "The
X Factor," "The Voice," "American Idol," "Top Chef,"
"Top Model," "Project Runway," and "Twerking with the
People call "America's Got Talent" AGT. That's how lazy
we've become. We can't pronounce three words.
Today the 50th annual Mr. Olympia contest starts in Las
Vegas. Arnold Schwarzenegger won it something like seven
times. So just think. Today's winner might someday ruin
the state of California.
Did you see last night's football game? It's a shame
that the Buccaneers and Falcons were forced to battle
like that. Pirates and birds are usually friends.
You can't make pirates and birds fight each other.
That's like making Jay Leno fight classic cars. Or
Nicole Kidman fight Botox.
In Germany it's the start of Oktoberfest. It is a time
of many contradictions. It's called Oktoberfest but it
starts in September. It's a joyous celebration but it
takes place in Germany.
Oktoberfest is the best time to visit Germany. Probably
the worst time would be about 1937.
Justin Bieber's monkey is not German. He is abandoned in
Germany, but he's actually Canadian. He went from "Give
me the banana" to "Papers, please."
This is true. In L.A. we're having something called
"Vegan Oktoberfest." Man, we really know how to take the
fun out of everything! Do you have beer with kale in it?
Do you have organic schnitzel?
It's a sad day as we hear that America's sweethearts —
the Honey Boo Boos, Mama June and Sugar Bear — are
separating. They're not consciously uncoupling. That's
for people who eat kale.
Mama June and Sugar Bear are, and I quote, "broked up."
Apparently Mama June caught Sugar Bear cheating with
other women. They were Betty Crocker, Mrs. Butterworth,
Little Debbie, Sara Lee, and Aunt Jemima.
The Secret Service is under scrutiny after a man jumped
a fence and entered the White House. In their defense,
when they saw a crazed maniac running down the White
House lawn, they assumed it was Biden.
Earlier tonight, there was the new show "Gotham." It's
about when Batman was a little boy and Robin was a
Bruce Springsteen is 65 years old today. Now when he's
dancing in the dark, it's because of cataracts.
It's Sea Otter Awareness Week. It is taking the country
by storm. Today Donald Trump put a sea otter on head. No
Kris Jenner officially filed divorce from Bruce Jenner.
They separated a year ago, but they waited until now to
divorce because it's in the script.
Bruce Jenner says he's putting on a brave face. He took
it out of the closet and put it on.
On Tuesday, Apple gave the new U2 album to all of their
customers for free. It just showed up in their iTunes.
People were upset about it. There was so much backlash
that Apple released a tool to remove the album from your
iPhone. Poor Bono and his weird sunglasses are soaked
with tears right now.
The first trailer for the new, highly anticipated
"Hunger Games" sequel came out yesterday. Of all the
"Hunger Games" movies, they're saying this is going to
be the hungriest.
Paris Hilton has a new dog. But not just any dog. A dog
she paid $13,000 for. The breeder that she bought it
from named the dog "Mr. Amazing" — I guess because it's
amazing they were able to get somebody to pay $13,000
for a dog.
The reason Mr. Amazing is so expensive is that he's one
of the world's smallest Pomeranians. For another $4,000,
they will sell you no Pomeranian at all.
Apple today released the iOS 8 mobile operating system,
which means we finally have more versions of iOS than
"Police Academy" movies.
They're saying iOS 8 is going to revolutionize the way
we ignore our friends and family.
The people of Scotland are voting on whether to declare
independence from the United Kingdom. If Scotland votes
for Independence, it could have major ramifications.
Great Britain is concerned that if they lose Scotland,
they could be cut off from a major supply of bagpipes
The official ballot is one line: "Should Scotland be an
independent country?" And that's it. Why is it that I
have to go through 18 pages of terms and conditions to
download iOS 8 while a whole country can secede from the
United Kingdom by checking a box that says "Yes"?
Today is the first day of fall. But the weather doesn't
change here. The only way we know what season it is in
L.A. is by what Paris Hilton's dog is wearing. Today,
It was quite a weekend for Apple. Apple sold a record 10
million new iPhones this weekend, which I think is all
There are no more of the new iPhones. If you didn't get
one, you have to wait for the iPhone 7.
About 400,000 people marched in New York today to draw
attention to climate change. They held up signs and
banners. They chanted things like "Hey, hey, ho, ho,
fossil fuels have got to go." You know when somebody
begins a chant with "Hey, hey, ho, ho," they mean
Many of the leaders and assistants to the leaders from
around the world were in attendance at the U.N. Climate
Summit. They say this was arguably the most
high-profile, significant meeting that will in no way
change anything whatsoever.
Unfortunately, the leaders of two of the world's biggest
polluters, China and India, did not show up for the
summit. That's like Daniel Day-Lewis and Meryl Streep
not showing up for the Oscars.
Kris and Bruce Jenner are getting divorced. Kris Jenner
said it was a painful decision for her and Bruce and
executive producer Ryan Seacrest. The Jenner family is
asking that no one respect their privacy at this
Poor Bruce Jenner. When I was growing up, he was the
most famous Olympic athlete in the world. His face was
on a box of Wheaties. Now his face isn't even on his
face anymore. So watch out, Michael Phelps.
Did everybody get the free U2 album in their iTunes?
Well, there were some complaints, so Apple built a
webpage specifically for users to delete the album from
their accounts. You just enter your birthday, and if
you’re under 40 years old it deletes the album.
The White House today came out in support of requiring
police officers to wear body cameras at all times. It’s
a great way for fans to keep up with their favorite NFL
This week scientists at North Carolina State University
announced they discovered a way to move and manipulate
liquid metal with electricity. And Arnold Schwarzenegger
has already been sent back in time to stop it.
A man was arrested yesterday after the garbage bag he
was carrying split open and a human head fell out. If
he’s convicted, the man could receive a two-week
suspension from the NFL.
Royal Caribbean cruises will soon be adding robotic
bartenders that can shake drinks, cut limes, and
precisely measure alcohol. While Carnival Cruises
announced they will soon be adding plumbing.
A bachelorette party missing since Monday after a
hurricane hit has been found and safely returned to
California. When asked about the ordeal one of the girls
said, “We were screaming, everything was spinning, there
were bodies everywhere — and then the hurricane hit.”
Tonight is our 100th show. We made it to 100 episodes. I
want to thank the one group of people we couldn’t have
done it without: people who drink coffee late in the
afternoon even though they know it’s a bad idea.
The Secret Service is under investigation after two
different men made it onto the White House grounds this
weekend after jumping the fence. Said President Obama,
“Jumping the fence, huh? Why didn’t I think of that?”
The militant group ISIS today released a new audio clip
mocking American politicians, including John Kerry and
John McCain. And Americans are really upset because they
released it directly into everybody’s iTunes account.
Next week the Supreme Court returns to work and is
expected to decide if statements made on social media
should be enough to put someone in jail. And if your mom
is on Facebook, you know the answer is yes. Something
has to stop her behavior.
According to a new estimate, Congress has had a full
work week just 14 percent of the time since 1978.
Congress said they planned to address the report next
week because it's already Tuesday.
According to a new report, Nigeria owes New York City
over $500,000 in unpaid parking tickets for its foreign
diplomats. Nigeria apologized and said they'll pay the
fines right away if they we send them our bank account
number, our PIN, and our mother's maiden name.
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF SEPT. 20, 2014
The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
• Were the remains of an ancient city
in the Australian desert?
• Despite what some people may think they've read, you
still can't use
to purchase marijuana.
• Has the Nobel Committee expressed
for awarding the 2009 Peace Prize to President Obama?
• Is Durex offering limited edition
• Second grader acts out her mother's
in school as a show-and-tell offering.
• Update to the case of a Houston man supposedly
sentenced to jail
for "paying too much child support" for his son.
• List collects statements about rape made by
• Photographs purportedly show giant
produced by government DNA experiments in Missouri.
• Photograph purportedly shows a rare, recently
discovered trans-species of
• Outrage over Urban Outfitters' offering an item
appearing to be a bloodstained
Kent State sweatshirt
using Facebook to source victims by adding unsuspecting
parents as friends?
• Did a Florida teacher give 6th grade students an
explicit sex-ed lesson involving a
to satisfy common core requirements?
• A mother-daughter lesbian couple named
Vertasha and Mary
seek acceptance of their taboo romance?
• Alert warns that this
has been designated as "National Kill a Pitbull Day."
• Did a California man post a selfie taken with his
• Does a public high school in Hilliard, Ohio, host a
• Has the brother of a top ISIS leader
repented and converted
• Are prisoners
swapped in exchange
for the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl now top 'ISIS
• Image shows a 1980s advertisement offering a
free U2 album
with every cassette player purchase.
• Has the federal government banned
public school students
from bringing their lunches from home?
• Has First Lady Michelle
Obama filed for divorce
from President Barack Obama over his golf habit?
• Has Colorado become the first state to
use of crystal meth?
• Video clip shows a
hapless bungee jumper
get his head bitten off by a crocodile.
• Request states prayers are needed as the city of
Queragosh has fallen to ISIS, and
are being beheaded in large numbers.
• Has rapper Sean Combs been
in connection with the murder of Tupac Shakur?
• Did HIV-positive basketball star
donate blood for leukemia patients?
receive welfare benefits for as many as four wives?
• Has Netflix announced they must
because they cannot compete with piracy?
• List details crimes and disturbing backgrounds
associated with members of the
the NFL, or the NBA.
• Did Kanye West score
in a charity basketball game against a team of
handicapped children in wheelchairs?
• Is Facebook banning
who are not using their legal names on their accounts?
• Do ISIS operatives plan to
slaughter American troops
at their homes after finding the addresses of military
• Does the
National Football League
enjoy tax-exempt status as a nonprofit organization?
• Perth man buys first iPhone 6 in Australia,
live on television.
• Finally, Apple's new "Wave" technology allows you to
recharge your iPhone
by microwaving it. Not.
• Busch Gardens altered its
to remove decapitated props reminiscent of ISIS
• Social media outrage:
visits St. Jude's, disrupts treatments, alienates
• Don't forget to visit our
page for a collection of odd news stories from around
Worth a Second Look
• Photograph captures wildlife
fleeing a fire
in Bitterroot Forest, Montana.
Still Haunting the Inbox
• Check out our
25 Hottest Urban Legends
list to keep abreast of what's circulating in the
• Visit our
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 recommended for YouTube videos.
• • • • •
Think about the ramifications of this product.
Seriously. Imagine having a car painted with Line-X.
Living about a mile west of the Hayward Fault, I'm even
thinking of having my house painted with it, although I
don't know how my Homeowners Assn. will feel about the
color candy apple red when all the other homes are white
or beige. The
is from NatGeo, so it should be on the up and up. (2
• • • • •
Want to see something truly amazing? Watch
short video, then ask yourself how many legs were broken
and fenders were dented during the rehearsals before the
filmmaker got it right? (1 Min.)
• • • • •
Skip this item if you don't like seeing political items
sully the Lighter Side column:
This new "Firewall" commentary received from Paul
Salerno was posted on the Internet a few days ago. "Bill
Whittle hit it out of the park again," said Paul. Click
to see if you agree. (7 Mins.)
• • • • •
Some people — mostly military veterans — have allowed
their noses to get out of joint because President Obama
two Marines with a cup of coffee while disembarking from
Marine One. But is that a big deal when you consider he
never served in the military, and the only thing he
knows about military protocol is what he has picked up
over the past 6 years? Then again, it may surprise some
people to know that standard military protocol does not
require the President to salute military personnel under
these circumstances. The tradition began with President
Reagan in 1981. Click on this
link for the facts.
• • • • •
Most longtime Farsider readers who have an interest in
military aviation have already taken a low-level ride in
an FA/18 Hornet. Here's your opportunity to ride along
in a British
as it maneuvers around mountains and sometimes as low as
50 feet above the ground. (5 Mins.)
• • • • •
Staying on subject, you pilots and wannabe flyboys will
want to watch
film sent in by Dirk Parsons. "Wings Over the Rockies"
features Harrison Ford and is being shown continually at
the Denver Air Museum. We're so sure you will enjoy it
that we'll give you your money back if you don't like
it. (10 Mins.)
• • • • •
Canadian Rick Mercer has his own show and YouTube
channel and is very popular on Canadian TV.
clip from Lumpy highlights one of Rick's segments in
which he participates in the "Train of Death." (6 Mins.)
• • • • •
Damn! I was looking forward to hearing two loud
Anyone else tired of watching these crazy people land
safely? (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
When you fly 50 feet in the air off a ramp and miss the
landing area there's only one word we can think of that
The other crazies in this video from Bob Kosovilka fared
much better. (5 Mins.)
• • • • •
Don't watch these crazy Russians climb to the top of the
second tallest building in the world if you suffer from
acrophobia. (5 Mins.)
• • • • •
Here's another one of those excellent
websites (courtesy of Tom McFall) that show the
difference from the past to the present over a span of
70 years. Left click your mouse, hold it and drag it
slowly from left to right on the original photo from the
past and it will become the same exact location today.
Drag it back to the left and you will be in 1944 again.
• • • • •
You say you've never seen anyone get tagged for driving
solo in the diamond lane? Watch
Oakland CHP officer looking for the scofflaws. (2 Mins.)
• • • • •
It's one thing to deal with the nervousness of playing
the flute in an international competition, quite another
when Mother Nature decides to test your resolve to
finish your musical number. Watch what happens to
flutist. (1:30 Mins.)
• • • • •
Talk about neighbors from Hell. Living next to a
particular type of cathouse is one thing. Living next
cathouse is quite another. Phew! (28 Secs.)
• • • • •
at the misfortune of others, but damn, this is funny.
• • • • •
felines, the guy in this short clip is going to open the
gate and let the lion that weighs as much as he does
loose. Is he about to get mauled?
and see, they wave goodbye because we are outta here.
• • • • •
Pic of the Week
House Minority Leader takes the Ice Bucket Challenge…