Nov. 20, 2014
Bill Mattos, Editor and Publisher
Leroy Pyle, Webmaster
The Farsider is
an independent publication that is not affiliated with the San Jose Police
SJPBA has allowed the Farsider to be included on its web site solely for the
retired San Jose Police community. The content of this newsletter does not
represent or reflect
of the San Jose Police Benevolent Association's Board of Directors or its
A COUPLE OF DATES TO NOTE
The following email from PBA Sgt. at Arms Bob Moir
showed up in our inbox just prior to press time that
touched on last night’s (Wed.) Nov. PBA meeting and a
couple of dates that may be of interest. You can read it
Nice turnout tonight with 94 attendees. All enjoyed the
pre-Thanksgiving day turkey dinner. Next meeting will be
on the third Wed. of Jan. THE PBA DOES NOT MEET IN DEC.
Valentine Dinner/Dance scheduled for Feb 14. — and
actually on Valentines Day. Another scheduled event is
the POA-sponsored Christmas Open House at the POA on
Thurs., Dec 18, from 4 to 10 p.m. Mike Alford is the new
Pres. of the Police & Fire Retirees Association,
replacing Jim Spence. Pat Boyd is the VP (Police) for
the same organization.
THERE WILL BE NO FARSIDER NEXT THURSDAY
We're going to be preparing the Thanksgiving bird next
week, and the instructions say to let the turkey chill
in the sink for a few hours. Is this what they mean?
We hope you and your family enjoy the Thanksgiving
holiday. The Farsider will be back on Thursday, Dec.
RETIRED OFFICER TERRY GUYTON
This obit was spotted by Rodger Cripe in the Nov. 14th
edition of the Calaveras Enterprise...
Appointed Feb. 22, 1974
Jan. 4, 1989
Nov. 2, 2014
Guyton of Mountain Ranch died Monday, Nov. 2, 2014, at
his residence in Mountain Ranch. He was 68.
He was born June 20, 1946, in Los Angeles to Harry Grant
Guyton and Connie Theresea Guyton-Whickey. He grew up in
a military family and spent his childhood in various
parts of the world. Mr. Guyton settled down in the Bay
Area, where he went to high school and then earned a
bachelor’s degree in recreation therapy from San Jose
State University and served in Vietnam as a captain in
the U.S. Air Force. He worked for the San Jose Police
Department and was a member of the American Legion. He
moved to Mountain Ranch in 2000.
Mr. Guyton enjoyed spending time with his family and
friends, riding motorcycles, traveling with his wife and
fixing things in his workshop. He was a prepper, gun
collector and Christian.
Mr. Guyton is survived by his wife, Debrah Guyton of
Mountain Ranch; his children, Nicole Guyton of Portland,
Ore., Katrina Smith of Chicago, Jillian Sandbothe of
South Lake Tahoe, Victoria Saunders of Denver; his
adopted children, Jean Everly of Goose Creek, Annie
Joses of Lodi, Jess Ramires of Valley Springs, Kellie
Eltringham of Murphys and Gavin Montgomery of South Lake
Tahoe; and six grandchildren.
A small family service will be held at a later date. No
open visitation or services will be held. Memorial
donations may be made to the Calaveras County Animal
Shelter, as Mr. Guyton was an animal lover. The family
wishes to thank everyone who has taken the time to help
them through this difficult time.
HERE for an updated list (as of May of this year) of
former SJPD employees who have passed away. If needed,
the User Name is
and the Password is
FORMER MERCURY NEWS REPORTER BETTY BARNACLE
Many of you retirees should remember Betty as she
covered the SJPD beat for many years during JoeMac’s
tenure. This obit appeared in the paper earlier this
Pioneering Reporter Betty Barnacle Dillane Dies
Sharon Noguchi, Staff Writer
News — Nov. 15, 2014
SAN JOSE —
When pioneering reporter Betty Barnacle Dillane covered
crime, she established such a trustworthy relationship
with police that she was permitted to flip through their
files to find ones she thought were newsworthy.
After she left the beat and that access was eliminated,
she asked police to reopen the files. They never did,
but they awarded her a commendation when she retired,
friend Mary Gottschalk recalled.
died Thursday of complications from Alzheimer's disease,
surrounded by friends at her Rose Garden home. She was
One of the first women hired by the then-San Jose News,
Dillane — she used her maiden name Barnacle for her
byline — was a dogged reporter and an inspiration to
"No story was too simple or complicated for her," said
Lou Calvert, former associate news editor of the News,
which later became the afternoon edition of the Mercury
News. "She managed to have a special relationship not
only with the cops or a victim or witness but also with
She was born Aug. 13, 1931, in San Francisco, one of
three children of Evelyn (Cornell) and Thomas Barnacle,
a firefighter. After graduating from UC Berkeley, she
worked as a reporter at the San Francisco Call-Bulletin
before joining the San Jose News — just as newspapers
were beginning to hire women not just for the "society
section" but also to cover news.
"No one worked the phones like Betty," said former
Mercury News copy editor Michele Jurich, noting
Dillane's skill in getting people to open up to her.
Another former reporting colleague, Julie Sevrens Lyons,
said, "I always loved hearing her answer the phone:
She was also gracious, kind and welcoming to women in
the newsroom. Her thoughtfulness showed up in her
obituaries, which she wrote during her last years with
the Mercury News, and she often received thank-you notes
from grateful families.
Dillane, who was divorced, had one son, Michael Patrick
"In Betty's life with her son, I saw what it really
meant to be a mother," said former reporter Pat Lopes
Harris. "Being there in good times and bad is something
all of us want to do, but few live up to it like Betty
After retiring, Dillane devoted herself to church,
attending Mass daily, singing in the choir and teaching
catechism at St. Martin of Tours Church. She was an avid
doll collector and a member of the Garden City Doll Club
of San Jose and the San Jose Woman's Club. She loved
garage sales and shopping.
She was devoted to the church and was very caring, said
friend Mary Kay Tocce, who attended a prayer group daily
Even as her memory declined, Dillane took care to dress
impeccably with coordinating accessories, said
Gottschalk, a former Mercury News style writer. "Betty
remained upbeat and cheerful. She couldn't always
remember your name, but she always had a great smile."
And she loved to chat, said neighbor Grace Castaneda,
who would invite Dillane out for walks. "She would talk
to everybody and anybody."
For the past three years, Castaneda and her husband,
Efren Guerrero, took it on themselves to care for
Dillane, going daily to make sure she took medications,
driving her to appointments, and cooking and cleaning
for her and her three cats.
"She kind of adopted us as family, and we adopted her
too," Castaneda said.
Dillane is predeceased by her son, who died in 2001, and
her siblings, Robert Barnacle and Honora Barnacle.
Services are pending.
While this article from last Saturday’s paper doesn’t
specifically mention San Jose, it does illustrate the
financial deficit problems of the numerous California
pension plans, including the two largest: CalPERS and
CalSTRS (teachers’ retirement system). For the curious
among you, inside the story is a link to a website that
includes all plans in the state, including San Jose’s.
And believe it or not, it’s easy to navigate.
Info Reveals Deficits
California agencies can’t afford retirement benefits—
Lifsher, Los Angeles Times
News — Nov. 15, 2014
— A decade ago, many of California’s public pension
plans had plenty of money to pay for workers’
All that has changed, according to a far-reaching
package of data from the state controller.
Taxpayers are now on the hook for billions of dollars
more to cover the future retirements of public workers
with the bill widely varying depending on where they
The city of Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension System,
for instance, had more than enough funds in 2003 to
cover its estimated future bill for workers’ retirement
checks. A decade later, it is short $3 billion.
The state’s pension goliath, the California Public
Employees’ Retirement System, had $281 billion to cover
the benefits promised to 1.3 million workers and
retirees in 2013. Yet it needed an additional $57
billion to meet future obligations.
The bill at the state teachers’ pension fund is even
higher: It has an estimated shortfall of $70 billion.
The new data from a website created by state Controller
John Chiang comes at a time of growing anger from
taxpayers over the skyrocketing cost of public workers’
Until now, the bill for those government pensions was
buried deep in the funds’ financial reports. By making
this data available, Chiang is bound to stir debate
about how taxpayers can afford to make retirement more
comfortable for public workers when private-sector
employees’ own financial futures have become less
secure. For most non-government workers, fixed monthly
pensions are increasingly rare.
“Somebody who is knowledgeable and interested is several
clicks away from the ugly mess that will define
California’s financial future,” said Dan Pellissier,
president of California Pension Reform, a
Sacramento-area group seeking to stem rising statewide
Chiang has assembled reams of data from 130 public
pension plans run by the state, cities and other
government agencies. It’s now accessible at his website
In nearly eight years as controller, essentially the
state’s paymaster, Chiang has made good on a commitment
to make government financial records more transparent
Chiang, who was elected last week as state treasurer,
also has made it easy for consumers to search unclaimed
property held by the state, such as utility deposits or
forgotten bank savings accounts.
In 2010, after the city of Bell salary scandal, he
started putting pay information online for elected
officials and other employees in cities, counties,
special government districts, higher education, schools
and the judicial system. In September, he added details
on the finances of the state’s 58 counties and more than
450 cities, allowing taxpayers to track revenues,
expenditures, liabilities, assets and fund balances.
The pension debate in recent years has been fueled by
Vernon’s former city manager, for example, was receiving
more than $500,000 in annual pension payments. Most
public safety workers can retire as early as 50. And
some public employees had cashed out unused vacation and
other perks to spike their retirement pay.
Meanwhile, cash-strapped cities are facing escalating
bills. Rising pension costs contributed to bankruptcies
in Stockton, San Bernardino and Vallejo.
Critics contend governments can no longer afford to pay
generous pensions to retirees that aren’t available to
most private-sector workers. Unions, meanwhile, have
vehemently defended the status quo, saying these
benefits were promised to workers for years of serving
“In the months ahead, California and its local
communities will continue to wrestle with how to
responsibly manage the unfunded liabilities associated
with providing retirement security to police,
firefighters, teachers and other providers of public
services,” Chiang said.
“Those debates and the actions that flow from them ought
to be informed by reliable data that is free of
political spin or ideological bias,” said Chiang.
A million items of new pension information online —
covering the fiscal years 2002-03 through 2012-13 —
should “empower greater citizen participation in how
government handles a policy matter which is central to
California’s long-term prosperity,” Chiang said.
Though pension lingo can be daunting, the online
information being offered includes a range of
easy-to-understand and more complicated data. There is
even a glossary of terms to help.
Relatively proficient computer users, researchers and
statisticians can use the data to compare different city
and county pension systems.
Area: Recount in San Jose Mayor Race. Click
Ed. — Contrary to the news report above, a recount has
been scuttled. Click
HERE to read an updated Mercury News article from
~ ~ ~
NBC Bay Area: San Jose Police Chief Under Fire for
Taking Gifts from 49ers. Click
~ ~ ~
ABC 7: City Manager: Police Chief Violated Gift Policy.
~ ~ ~
San Jose Inside: Police Chief Broke Rules by Accepting
49ers Tickets; Top Rank Complicates Investigation. Click
Saga Reveals Insight into Chief's Character
So now we
know that Chief Esquivel also attended, free of charge,
a 49er's game under the auspices of a so-called "law
enforcement appreciation day" (more on that later). The
question many members are asking is why Chief Larry
Esquivel didn't out himself weeks ago when the spotlight
burned so brightly on A.C. Eddie Garcia and D.C. Jeff
Marozick for also accepting free tickets to the opening
game at the new Levi's Stadium, courtesy of the 49ers?
As you may remember, A.C. Garcia found himself the
target of local and national media attention when it was
revealed that he and D.C. Marozick went to a 49er's game
this year in violation of City policy and our Duty
Manual. Garcia publicly apologized to many Department
members at different meetings. At no time did Chief
Esquivel stand beside his A.C. during his mea culpa
moment and admit that he too went to one of these games
in violation of City policy.
Imagine what must have been going through Garcia's mind
as he publicly humbled himself before his subordinates,
knowing the whole time that he had been at another one
of these games with his boss, Chief Esquivel, who was
remaining silent about his participation. Here was
Garcia, along with Marozick, dangling in the wind all
the while their boss, just as involved, remained silent.
With friends like that...
Let me point out that I think the issue of the tickets
and attendance at the games is a minor violation of
policy. I also don't think that any of our Command
Officers would betray their oath in exchange for a day
of wining and dining at a football game. It's how they
responded to their indiscretion that most concerns me.
My heart went out to our two PIO's who were sent out to
try to explain their bosses' behavior. Wouldn't it have
been best if Larry and Eddie had made themselves
available for those interviews instead of subjecting
their press officers to that ordeal?
Esquivel and Garcia have tried to downplay the gift by
calling their participation part of a "law enforcement
appreciation day". From the sound of it, I would call
their event a "chiefs' appreciation day". Many sports
teams and entertainers have a way of showing their
appreciation and support of law enforcement. The POA
facilitates some of these events. For instance, each
year the Sharks hold an event honoring and assisting
COPS (Concerns of Police Survivors). A portion of the
tickets sold is donated to that organization. Both the
Giants and the A's hold a law enforcement appreciation
day where the officers receive about a 10% group
discount when purchased through the POA.
Those events are a far cry from Larry and Eddie being
comp'd a game with "all access," paid parking(?), food
and alcohol(?) and of course a chance to be on the field
during the game. Their credibility took a hit when they
said they had paid for the tickets, only to find out
that they paid after the media began to make inquiries.
I don't remember the "49er's Law Enforcement
Appreciation Day" being extended to anyone else in the
Department. For Larry and Eddie to equate their gift to
a true law enforcement appreciation day is insulting and
True selfless leaders would have given the tickets to
deserving officers in their command as recognition of
their outstanding work. That didn't happen here.
Selfless is not the word that comes to mind when I think
about our current leadership. If they had given the
tickets for outstanding work or to an officer severely
injured in the course of his job, even if it had
violated policy, the troops would have applauded their
It's clear what the 49ers have been up to. They have
hundreds of millions of dollars invested in their
players. They know that some of them may run afoul of
the law. They live in San Jose, party in San Jose, may
drive drunk through San Jose and may even commit
domestic violence in San Jose. So it's not a bad
business investment on the part of the 49ers to foster
good relations with the local police department. Our
Chief's Office authorized the formation of the pay jobs
associated to this episode. In doing so, they showed
extremely poor judgment. It was their job, when this
idea was pitched, to say no. It was their job to know
better and foresee events like the Ray McDonald case. It
was their job to remember what happened, years ago, with
the Sharks, a former Los Gatos cop and a disgraced
What is most baffling to me is Larry's silence
concerning his involvement over the last several weeks.
The honorable way to have handled this issue would have
been to come clean, publicly, when Eddie and Jeff became
the media targets of the gift ordinance violation. Larry
knew that he too had committed the same offense. He
chose to stay quiet. We are left, then, to surmise that
he would have continued his silence had the media not
made further inquiries. Is that how he expects his
officers to conduct themselves? I know it's not. There
seems to be a do as I say, not as I do approach in play
We've seen this Chief take credit for a 43% drop in
gang-related homicides that never occurred. We've seen
him write an op-ed, a few days before the recent mayoral
election, claiming that crime is going down and our
Department is being turned around and now we've seen him
remain silent as others are twisting in the wind for
something he also did. When the leader of an
organization cedes the moral authority required to hold
that position, a change in leadership is mandated for
the organization to survive.
THE TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS OF THE CITY AND SJPD
Can you feel the love? We think that outgoing Mayor
Chuck Reed and the two authors who penned this guest
article in last Sunday’s paper should get a room…
Reed Has Put San Jose Back on Track
OpEd by Dave Fadness and William B. Baron
News — Nov. 9, 2014
to 2006 — a time when San Jose was scarred by political
corruption and cronyism. Enter Chuck Reed, a smart man
with high ethics, political courage and a can-do
approach — a man for the times.
Reed was elected with nearly 60 percent of the vote
despite being bashed by an embedded political machine.
Then the global financial crisis of 2007 hit, and the
scars on our broad and diverse residents have not yet
fully healed. The worldwide economic calamity shattered
communities across our land, and the reality of a need
for fiscally sustainable policies became clear.
As a result of Reed’s steady hand and conscientious
leadership during this critical time, he was re-elected
with 77 percent of the vote in 2010.
Like the rest of us, Chuck Reed isn’t perfect. But over
the past eight years as our mayor, he consistently
showcased strong character, dedication, openness,
honesty and a keen grasp of budgeting arithmetic. Reed’s
focus and perseverance was on behalf of the people of
our fair city — not just a certain few, but for all.
Most significantly, this smart workaholic educated us,
including a majority of council colleagues, on the
consequences of our structural fiscal mess. As a result,
he and a council majority led three overwhelmingly
successful pension ballot measures, V, W and B, to
reform public employee pensions that were unsustainable
and wildly out of touch with reality. More work remains,
and for the sake of our children, this inequitable and
unsustainable insanity must stop. We encourage the mayor
to carry on with his clear, honest reform message
statewide and beyond.
During this contentious time and still today, Reed’s
opponents attack both his intent and his character —
unjustly, we believe. Reed, though, never got caught up
in personal attack warfare because he never forgot who
he worked for: You. He respected you and your
intelligence on the issues. We believe Reed’s leadership
and success at the ballot box saved hundreds of public
employee jobs and offered improved city services along
Reed also led a renaissance of high-tech and clean-tech
industry job growth in San Jose. His mantra of “moving
at the speed of business” and reducing government red
tape when possible were keys to success.
Moreover, he is a leader for open government through his
Sunshine Reforms, fought for a better environment
through his green initiatives and pushed for
infrastructure projects he felt were critical to San
Jose’s future, such as updating our sewer treatment
plant and the expansion of BART. Updating our general
plan and appointing more job-friendly leadership in key
city posts were also important.
While we did not agree with him on all matters — BART,
for instance — we always found Reed to be a respectful
listener, a thoughtful questioner and a goal-oriented
resolver. In our ever-forward-thinking Silicon Valley,
it’s important to take a moment to reflect on our recent
past. Without Reed, our city would have faced certain
bankruptcy. Thanks to his capable leadership, we are on
course to fiscal sustainability. This is not a result of
good fortune but of thoughtfulness and skill.
Although this humble gentleman didn’t set out to inspire
us, he most certainly did.
For his great leadership and important legacy, we thank
Mayor Chuck Reed, one of San Jose’s very best mayors.
Dave Fadness and William B. Baron are San Jose
residents, businessmen and community activists. They
wrote this for this newspaper.
• • • • •
Going back almost two weeks to the Sunday, Nov. 9th,
edition of the paper was this excerpt about Pete
Constant, a former San Jose cop and soon-to-be former
city council member who may be wondering, “What the hell
am I going to do now?”
didn’t run a campaign’: Constant takes the blame
glance, outgoing San Jose City Councilman Pete
Constant’s race for the West Valley-Mission College
board looked like a walkover. It was going to be a
holding spot until the well-known Republican figured out
his next move in politics. But when the first big batch
of votes was in, Constant had lost by a decisive margin
of 60-40 percent to Anne Kepner, a San Jose attorney.
So what happened?
“You’ve got to run a campaign to win, and I didn’t run a
campaign,” the always-candid Constant told IA. “I got
wrapped up in other campaigns. And my opponent
out-raised me. I had too much other stuff. I was a
terrible candidate. There’s no excuse.”
IA couldn’t reach Kepner for comment, but some insight
came from a friend, Jodi Muirhead, who was elected to
the Santa Clara Unified school board. Muirhead pointed
out that Kepner’s name appeared on Democratic fliers and
that she was supported by the South Bay Labor Council.
“Anne is very sharp and was well-prepared,” Muirhead
told IA. “She and I did a seven-month class together to
prepare for running for office, so we both felt
confident that we were going to have strong campaigns.”
Meanwhile, Constant says he’s finishing his dissertation
in organizational leadership and hopes to get a real job
soon. But, he adds, “I’m not going away.”
~ ~ ~
Also in the Nov. 9th I.A. column were these topics that
may or may not be of interest to you. Keep in mind that
this goes back almost two weeks...
continues over the San Jose Police Department’s domestic
violence investigation of 49ers defensive lineman Ray
McDonald after prosecutors last week declined to charge
him. Both Chief Larry Esquivel and Assistant Chief Eddie
Garcia have been rapped for their acceptance of tickets
to 49ers preseason games as part of the team’s annual
law enforcement appreciation day.
Esquivel and Garcia both attended a 2013 game and
reported it on their annual financial disclosure
statements listing gifts of significant value they
received as public officials. Garcia attended the same
event this year, this time with Deputy Chief Jeff
The chiefs have since repaid the team for the tickets.
That came after controversy over an off-duty sergeant
working security for the team. The sergeant was at
McDonald’s house when officers arrived on the domestic
violence call, which raised questions about the
department’s ties to the Niners. The department has
since indefinitely barred officers from working for the
But the city manager’s office said in a memo last week
that city employees are expressly prohibited from
accepting sports tickets and any other gifts valued over
“The tickets were a mistake,” spokesman David Vossbrink
said. “We’re making sure our staff are aware of the
Two anonymous complaints also were sent to the city’s
independent police auditor, LaDoris Cordell, about the
chiefs’ acceptance of the tickets. Cordell argued that
accepting tickets to team games constitutes a violation
of the department’s duty manual — and that reimbursement
does not negate that. Garcia had earlier contended that
SJPD didn’t get special treatment from the team, noting
that other Bay Area cops, prosecutors and judges also
attended the event. The Santa Clara County District
Attorney’s Office, however, said none of its staff
involved in the McDonald case attended the law
enforcement appreciation games.
Pension reform battle takes on another legal wrinkle
San Jose city employee unions think they have found a
new foothold in their ongoing legal battle to overturn
voter-approved pension reform measures. The latest turn
of the Measure B wheel came last week when an
administrative law judge at the state Public Employment
Relations Board ruled that the City Council needed to
rescind its vote that placed the pension reform measure
on the June 2012 ballot.
But the judge lacked the power to overturn the actual
election results, so the measure stands.
Sound like a pointless exercise? But it may not be.
The city expects to appeal the ruling to the full Public
Employment Relations Board, a process that could take
years. If the ruling is upheld, the unions could then go
to Superior Court and ask a civil judge to throw out the
entire Measure B, including the voter results. That’s
something the labor groups are already trying to do
through a separate lawsuit currently in the appeals
City Attorney Rick Doyle acknowledged the risk of the
second case but said that ultimately, with a few more
legal rounds to go — and the ongoing possibility of an
out-of-court settlement — that the latest ruling was
“not the end of the world.”
“I think it’s tough to have a court throw that out,”
Doyle said. “Voters spoke and we’re trying to make it
But Christopher Platten, the union’s attorney, said
simply that the ruling “kills Measure B.”
The administrative law judge, Eric Cu, concluded in
making his ruling that the city did not negotiate in
good faith before putting the measure on the ballot.
That’s an argument the employee groups have been making
all along, and one the city has repeatedly denied.
Liccardo’s mayoral election: steppingstone to nowhere?
Well, there goes Sam Liccardo ’s career in politics. By
edging out Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese
for the job of San Jose mayor, the 44-year-old San Jose
city councilman has won the seat where careers go to
With one notable exception, no San Jose mayor has gone
on to hold higher office — or any other office, for that
matter — in more than 40 years. And in terms of
political history, that’s pretty much forever. Of
course, that exception is a big one: Norman Mineta
served as San Jose mayor from 1971 to 1975 and went on
spend the next 20 years in the U.S. House of
Representatives and stints as the U.S. secretary of
commerce and U.S. secretary of transportation. ( Sherman
Otis Houghton, who sat in the mayor’s seat in 1855 and
1856 — several years after statehood — also served in
Congress, from 1871-75.) But if you look around Mineta’s
portrait on the wall in City Hall, it’s a political
graveyard. Ron James and the late Janet Gray Hayes never
served in office after being mayor. Tom McEnery ran for
Congress in 1994 but lost a close race to Zoe Lofgren,
who had the good sense never to be San Jose’s mayor.
There were high hopes for Susan Hammer, who made a
speech at the 1996 Democratic Convention. But she never
again ran for office. Similarly, political watchers saw
a potential future in Sacramento for Ron Gonzales, who
previously had been a county supervisor, but he left
office under a cloud and with an indictment that was
later dismissed. Today, he’s the CEO of the Hispanic
Foundation of Silicon Valley and seems to have no
regrets about leaving the political arena.
And after eight bruising years battling budgets and
public-employee unions, Chuck Reed has often said that
he looks forward to his next job as a retired mayor. If
Liccardo had any hopes for public employment beyond his
early 50s, losing might have been his best shot.
Political watchdog fines Councilman Campos
San Jose Councilman Xavier Campos will be up to $5,500
lighter when he leaves office at the end of the year, as
the state’s political watchdogs have ruled the embattled
politician broke the rules when he ran for office in
The ruling by the California Fair Political Practices
Commission comes after it had been investigating Campos
over the past year in response to concerns raised over
his controversial campaign for the District 5 council
In that race, campaign mail against opponent Magdalena
Carrasco incorrectly and illegally portrayed her as a
communist, and Campos won the June primary by a razor
thin margin. Campos friend and former employer George
Shirakawa Jr. , The disgraced former county supervisor,
has been charged with helping to send out the mailers.
Voters kicked Campos out of office, giving Carrasco a
resounding win in a rematch this June.
Now the FPPC has determined Campos and then campaign
treasurer Linda Delgado — the mother of one of
Shirakawa’s children — improperly documented campaign
contributions in violation of three FPPC codes.
Campos and Delgado are responsible for the $5,550 total
proposed fine, which the commission is expected to
approve on Nov. 20, and it’s unclear how or if they’ll
split it up. Campos didn’t respond to IA’s request for
Internal Affairs is an offbeat look at local and
state politics. This week’s items were written by Robert
Salonga, Mike Rosenberg, Sal Pizarro and Paul Rogers.
Send tips to
<email@example.com>, or call
• • • • •
What does it tell you about the ideology of the Mercury
News’ editorial board when it adopts an ACLU report to
make its case? This is from last Friday’s paper…
Officials Need to Set Drone Policies
Editorial by the Editorial Board, Barbara Marshman,
News — Nov. 14, 2014
Civil Liberties Union report released this week on
government surveillance couldn’t have been more timely.
The concerns it raised were echoed by residents
Wednesday night at San Jose’s first public meeting on
the drone that city police had acquired earlier this
year without telling the public or the City Council.
Bottom line: Elected leaders, not police departments,
should set policy for the use of surveillance equipment.
This is the ACLU recommendation.
It’s also common sense.
Drones have great potential to save lives in search and
rescue operations, bomb threats, hostage incidents —
cases in which the safety of police officers, civilians
or both could be at risk. But the potential for abuse is
extreme, and the fact that San Jose’s police got their
drone first and told people later hasn’t exactly
nourished public trust.
Government at various levels is grappling with the use
of new technology to gather information on Americans.
But misuse is nowhere more dangerous than at the local
level, where trust in the police is critical to public
San Jose belatedly and other cities proactively need to
set policies on what can be used and when — and on how
those policies will be enforced.
EXTENDING THE OLIVE BRANCH IS A PIECE OF CAKE — IF
YOU ARE THE WINNER
Mayor-Elect, Police Union Have Chance to Ease Tensions
leadership affords shot to revisit officers’ pay,
Robert Salonga and Mike Rosenberg, Staff writers
News — Nov. 9, 2014
SAN JOSE —
The first big test of presumptive Mayor-elect Sam
Liccardo’s leadership is already upon him, as he moves
to ease the rancor between City Hall and the police
union that opposed him.
No one expects Liccardo — a staunch backer of outgoing
Mayor Chuck Reed’s pension reforms that he says saved
the city from insolvency — or the officers who blame
those same reforms for driving cops off the force, to
back off their positions. But many see the pending
change of leadership at both City Hall and the police
union as the best opportunity to reset the conversation.
“Now that the election is over, I think we have all the
space to recognize we have too much in common to be
fighting the battles of the past,” Liccardo said.
Officer James Gonzales, incoming vice president of the
San Jose Police Officers’ Association, signaled that the
task won’t be easy.
“It’s not going to change unless dramatic things are
done,” he said. “Immediately, if not sooner.”
Jose City Councilman Sam Liccardo talks with
Mike Fox as he canvasses voters in San Jose.
took the first step toward easing tensions by leading
the City Council in a unanimous vote Friday not to
investigate the police union for allegedly undermining
recruitment efforts as part of a political campaign
against the city.
That charge, which the union denies, arose with a former
recruit’s published claim that the police union chief
urged cadets to quit to bolster their case that pension
reforms were decimating the police force and that
recruiters were quick to reject her for failing a
firearm safety test instead of retraining her. Surfacing
just before Tuesday’s election, it was the latest
flashpoint in an ongoing war between rank-and-file
officers and city leaders.
Friday’s council vote, Liccardo said, was an olive
branch from him and his allies to their biggest
political foe. But for the union, the move only
confirmed suspicions that it was driven by politics.
“It’s clear to everybody that it was a political stunt,
and now that the election is over, this thing is dead,”
said Sgt. Jim Unland, the outgoing union president.
But even Reed acknowledged that the changing of the
guard offers Liccardo a fleeting chance to mend fences.
“It’s certainly an opportunity that Mayor-elect Liccardo
will try to take advantage of to reset the relationship,
and get everyone focused on trying to solve the problems
we have,” Reed said. “Not that we necessarily agree on
everything, but there are certainly some problems that
we agree upon, so why not focus on trying to solve those
Liccardo has also dangled some ideas that may win some
support among officers, such as trying to give away
bilingual pay increases and letting retirement-age cops
work part time while collecting a piece of their
Unland, however, doubted a change in tone would be
enough to mollify the rank and file’s concerns.
“It’s not to say there weren’t personality issues
complicating things, and I’m a dance partner in that,”
said Unland, who plans to retire in January. “But taking
personality issues out of equation, you still have a
policy driving people away and making it difficult to
While the police union denies urging recruits to quit,
it has acknowledged relaying concerns about the city’s
pay and benefits and, in one instance, hosted outside
recruiters looking to hire existing officers.
Liccardo is holding firm on the existing efforts to
control retirement costs for city employees, saying Reed
“saved this city from fiscal calamity.” But he noted
that the new union leadership knows it doesn’t have “the
same emotional baggage” as its predecessors and can
forge new paths.
“I say that not to point fingers,” Liccardo said. “But
we’ve been through a very tumultuous political battle,
and we know wounds result from that. And having new
leadership, I think, has helped on the union side
because I think there is an ability to think and look at
things with a fresh perspective.”
Gonzales will be part of that new union leadership,
along with Sgt. Paul Kelly, expected to step in Jan.1 as
president. Gonzales said the closeness of the mayoral
race would signal to city leaders that residents want
them to soften their stance toward police.
“Our goals are to restore the Police Department and make
our citizens feel safe in their neighborhoods again, and
that comes from having a police department that is
competitive, where people want to come work here and
stay,” Gonzales said. “With the mayor’s race coming down
the middle, we’re divided. The tone that has changed was
from our citizens, not from leaders of either side.
That’s where the pressure is going to come from to
repair a broken police department and divided city.”
As it stands, the department has just over 1,000 sworn
officers, down from 1,400 six years ago, and the past
few police academies have been modest to anemic in terms
of numbers. For the past three years, at least 100
officers annually have gone out the door by either
retiring, some early, or taking jobs elsewhere,
outpacing the number joining the ranks by nearly 2-to-1.
Another Bay Area city could be a harbinger for San Jose
if the tenor of the discussion remains on its existing
path. In Vallejo, retirement costs for cops and other
public employees helped drive the city into bankruptcy
in 2008, and the rancor between city leaders and police
remains deep. City finances remain strained by rising
retirement costs, and its plan for exiting bankruptcy
has left a depleted and demoralized workforce.
But San Jose is in better financial shape. And Liccardo
points to an 11 percent pay restoration as an example of
gains that can be made while the sides and courts
wrangle over voter-approved pension reforms.
“We have a strong incentive to work together to address
outstanding concerns over disability and pay that I
believe can go a long way to addressing the frustrations
of many of our officers,” he said.
HOW CAN YOU SAY NEGATIVE THINGS ABOUT THE MERCURY NEWS
... the paper provides us with another reason nearly
every week to be happier than a slinky on an escalator
to be called “retirees.”
Force Could Drop to 30-Year Low
—Current trends would leave city with fewer than 1,000
News — Nov. 18, 2014
SAN JOSE —
The number of San Jose police officers will fall to the
lowest in three decades if current trends continue
unabated, and even that projection hinges on an
optimistic view of the agency’s ability to retain
officers and recruit new blood, according to a new
A department report produced for Tuesday’s City Council
meeting estimates that with current attrition and
hiring, the number of sworn staff will drop from the
current 1,010 down to 988 by July, which would mark the
first time since 1985 that the force steadily fielded
fewer than 1,000 officers. That same model projects a
sworn staff of 949 by July 2017.
The report buffets that by laying out the department’s
hiring goals, which would lead to modest staffing gains
by factoring in three annual police academy classes of
45 cadets, a 50-percent increase over the currently
aspired classes of 30. Before the current outflow of
officers started in 2008 with recession- driven
austerity measures, the department historically
approached its 60-cadet capacity.
But the past two academy classes have fallen short of
even 30 cadets, fielding 23 and 22 cadets respectively.
The projections also assume the current resignation rate
of between three and four officers a month will remain
Retention “continues to be a major challenge in
maintaining current staffing levels,” states the report,
which was signed by Chief Larry Esquivel and notes that
the department has been challenged by a “lower qualified
The chief’s report notes that the city set aside a $10
million reserve to bring the authorized number of police
positions to 1,250. The department has not been able to
meet its authorized staffing level since 2011 due to the
aforementioned struggles with retention, with upward of
100 officers leaving each year from resignation or
retirement for the past three years.
The money set aside for unfilled positions has been
reallocated primarily to cover overtime costs to keep
patrol and 911 response at baseline levels in the face
of the staffing shortage. The city spent nearly $25
million in overtime to officers in the past fiscal year,
according to the report.
An array of factors have been cited in the steady
departure of officers, including an anticipated
retirement surge of baby boomer hires and ongoing legal
battles over pension and disability reform between city
leaders and the police union. Some gains have been made,
including an 11percent pay restoration, but other items
such as a recovery of bilingual pay and a proposed
part-time work plan for retirement-eligible officers are
pending negotiation and approval.
Continuing thanks to you and Leroy for keeping us all
informed. These days I am often away from home on
business and look forward to each Thursday’s Farsider
update to learn what’s happening.
A couple of months ago you asked if anyone knew what the
“new” police building in south SJ was being used for.
I’ve been in it several times in the past year for a
variety of occasions and thought I'd share what I've
been told and seen while there. Outside it looks pretty
barren, and up to a month ago it was largely landscaped
The room designated as a briefing room is on the first
floor, seats about 100 comfortably and has been used a
few times for guest lecturers on police topics. Most
notably, the PD hosted the former LAPD Captain who was
in charge of the Rampart Division during the time when
there was significant notoriety about some of its
officers’ actions and deeds that were in the public eye
(CRASH). He spoke about his views of leadership. In an
apparent effort to economize, the City did not put in
things like a microphone system or a podium, although
you can see the holes in the walls where speakers
probably would have been designed to fit. Thus lecturers
have to rely on a portable microphone and speakers on
metal stands brought in for the purpose.
These days it has also been used a few times for police
officer oral boards, scattering as many as twelve boards
operating at a time across all three floors. On a most
recent visit we were shown around during a break in an
area about the size of the BFO Sergeant’s office in the
PAC, which has been divided up into individual office
cubes. I learned that the new Community Service Officer
(CSO) program was assigned this space and that each CSO
has their own work cubicle for their individual use. The
cubicles are nicely apportioned, hold a desk, desktop
links for laptop computers, chair, coat rack and
five-foot tall cloth-covered wood and metal framed
walls. It’s much like what you might see in any Silicon
Valley office work environment. It sure makes the BFO
Sergeant's office with shared drawers and table tops
look pretty lame.
I also learned from a command officer that the PD is
spending upwards of $100,000 to change the designed
space throughout the building to accommodate SJPD’s own
police academy. It seems that Evergreen Valley College
is closing the present police academy and, in fact,
after 2015 the land under it will be converted for use
as a shopping center. Thus, San Jose needed space to run
its own schoolhouse. Previously, SJ had internal
academies using the old health building and some
classroom space at PAB and the fourth street training
building. That solution wasn’t seen as a long- term fix,
so the PD is altering, temporarily, the design of the
interior of the building to accommodate two or more
simultaneous classes of recruits. It’s these temporary
rebuilds that are costing money because the command
staff wants to try and keep the option of opening the
South Valley Station at some point in the future. It's a
nice building, in some ways more secure than the PAB
used to be. It has card key access control in place,
again much like any other silicon valley mid-sized
company might have. Any movement from the public area
into the inner workings requires the presentation of the
ID card. I remember we had something like this installed
when the PAB building was doubled in size but that
system failed after a while and the old PAB key still
allows access throughout the old Mission Street PD
buildings, but not in the new one. We were asked not to
use the bathrooms on the upper floors as there is no
janitorial service for the building and the cops
assigned there were reportedly responsible for trash
collection and cleanup.
(On Concealed Carry)
If I may,
you asked in the Farsider about Attorney General Harris’
actions vis a vis private citizen’s ability to get CCW
permits issued. I'm no expert, but I think that because
the opinion is a 2-1 decision, she could ask for what is
called an en-banc appeal where an eleven person Court
made up of Appellate Judges from the Ninth Circuit could
re-hear the case and issue what she might hope for, a
different decision. Chances are not always good that
this larger group would agree with her, however. In
fact, if she loses in front of that body the US Supreme
Court might defer to the en-banc decision and not grant
Certiorari believing that this case had no applicable US
issues, or that all issues had been adequately explored
and adjudicated. Alternatively, she might be given leave
to file, and the Supreme Court could rule against her
entirely. Roll of the dice time.
Best regards to you two and your families as we enter
the holidays and many thanks for your dedication.
Retired Sgt. SJPD
• • • • •
Take that Job and…
What exactly were the proponents of the now passed
proposition 47 really trying to tell us? They spent over
ten million dollars getting it passed, so they must have
had something they needed to say.
The Start Point: Walk the halls of any jail or prison
and what you won't find are people who grew up in happy,
healthy, protective, loving and caring households.
That’s just not how it is. Most come from some type of
broken, abusive, needy and beat down circumstances.
Granted, there are exceptions here and there that we all
can acknowledge, but the evidence far outweighs the
Using that as a start point, unwind the reel and you
will get the full picture: acting out in school, the
principal's office, notes to parents, part-time school
counselors, family therapists (for the lucky ones),
social workers; maybe foster homes, Child Protective
Services, etc, etc; the list is long. Then comes the
Juvenile Court system, the police, court filings,
judges, lawyers, witnesses, probation officers, more
intervention by social services and then the always
(until now) reliable rehabilitation sessions, individual
therapy and support groups.
Then comes Adult Drug Court, two weeks County time, six
weeks of rehab, check ins with Probation, the
unemployment line. When that didn't quite do it, there
are more bail hearings, lawyers, Drug Court, a longer
stint in County for theft, misdemeanor assault, etc.,
and more mandatory rehab.
That still didn't quite do it, so there are a dozen or
more trips going through the County system, the Police
system, the Public Defender system, the Probation
system, the unemployment system, the rehab system;
before the judge finally has had it. All that energy and
years and years of Family Court and Administration of
Justice have not paid many dividends.
All that effort and the offender still has not turned
the corner. In the Court's mind, enough is enough. Next
time it's lock down prison time, more in-depth
evaluations, more support groups and more rehab, but
this time behind bars, and only if they qualify, and if
there's room, and if they still want it.
The End result: With Proposition 47, everything gets
thrown into reverse, and many offenders get back on the
streets and return to their old ways, their old favorite
Drug Court and the whole freakin' County system gets
jolted into cardio. The already overloaded, over worked,
over booked, stressed out and failed mess starts over
with essentially the same players. There is so much
rehab and so many support groups that everyone involved
is either dizzy or numb by all the constant chatter.
After the umpteenth time, everyone has long stopped
listening. Nothing has seemed to help. Rehab has become
institutionalized and synonymous with meeting the next
'buy' contact and making sleeping arrangements. The dark
path leaves everybody involved stranded, strained,
exhausted, confused and near despair. Now what?
Proposition 47 says this: We (the authorities) can't
deal with it, we don't have the time or the energy or
the manpower or the money. Here, you created it, now you
can have it back; you take it. The tree of your
permissive ways now comes back to bear fruit, and it's
all yours. You can have your addiction drug culture, all
of it. Search your own hearts and minds for the answers.
We can't handle it any longer. Don't give us your crap
any more; it stinks and we don't want it.
You caused it; from family, to schools to prison. You
screwed things up. You didn't care enough. You could
have prevented most of this whole ugly mess generations
ago, but no; you chose not to take care, and now we're
sending it back to your yards, your parks and your
streets. You can't hide any longer, it's too late. Now
you have to manage on your own. It's no longer our job.
You can just take that job and solve it, or take that
job and shove it. It's your choice. It's back in your
That's my take on what the proponents of Prop 47 were
trying to tell us.
• • • • •
We asked Gary Johnson
<firstname.lastname@example.org> to share this letter he
received from his Grandmother regarding next week’s
I'm not dead yet. Thanksgiving is still important to me.
If being in my Last Will and Testament is important to
you, then you might consider being with me for my
Dinner is at 2:00. NOT 2:15, NOT 2:30. Two. Two o'clock.
2:00 PM Arrive late and you get what's left over.
Last year, that idiot Marshall fried a turkey in one of
those barrel contraptions and practically burned the
deck off the house. This year, the only peanut oil used
to make the meal will be from the secret scoop of peanut
butter I add to the carrot soup.
Jonathan, your last new wife was an idiot. You don't
arrive at someone's house on Thanksgiving needing to use
the oven and the stove. Honestly, I thought you might
have learned after two wives. Date them longer and save
us all the agony of another divorce.
Now, the house rules are slightly different this year
because I have decided that 47 percent of you don't know
how to take care of nice things. Paper plates and red
Solo cups might be bad for the environment, but I'll be
gone soon and that will be your problem to deal with.
1. The University of Texas no longer plays Texas A&M.
The television stays off during the meal.
2. The "no cans for kids" rule still exists. We are
using 2 liter bottles because your children still open a
third can before finishing the first two. Parents can
fill a child's cup when it is empty. All of the cups
have names on them and I'll be paying close attention to
3. Chloe, last year we were at Trudy's house and I
looked the other way when your Jell-O salad showed up.
This year, if Jell-O salad comes in the front door it
will go right back out the back door with the garbage.
Save yourself some time, honey. You've never been a good
cook and you shouldn't bring something that wiggles more
than you. Buy something from the bakery.
4. Grandmothers give grandchildren cookies and candy.
That is a fact of life. Your children can eat healthy at
your home. At my home, they can eat whatever they like
as long as they finish it.
5. I cook with bacon and bacon grease. That's nothing
new. Your being a vegetarian doesn't change the fact
that stuffing without bacon is like egg salad without
eggs. Even the green bean casserole has a little bacon
grease in it. That's why it tastes so good. Not eating
bacon is just not natural. And as far as being healthy
is concerned, look at me. I've outlived almost everyone
6. Salad at Thanksgiving is a waste of space.
7. I do not like cell phones. Leave them in the car.
8. I do not like video cameras. There will be 32 people
here. I am sure you can capture lots of memories without
the camera pointed at me.
9. Being a mother means you have to actually pay
attention to the kids. I have nice things and I don't
put them away just because company is coming over. Mary,
watch your kids and I'll watch my things.
10. Rhonda, a cat that requires a shot twice a day is a
cat that has lived too many lives. I think staying home
to care for the cat is your way of letting me know that
I have lived too many lives too. I can live with that.
11. Words mean things. I say what I mean. Let me repeat:
You don't need to bring anything means "you don't need
to bring anything." And if I did tell you to bring
something, bring it in the quantity I said. Really, this
doesn't have to be difficult.
12. Domino's and cards are better than anything that
requires a battery or an on/off switch. That was true
when you were kids and it's true now that you have kids
13. Showing up for Thanksgiving guarantees presents at
Christmas. Not showing up guarantees a card that may or
may not be signed.
In memory of your Grandfather, the back fridge will be
filled with beer. Drink until it is gone. I prefer wine
anyway. But one from each family needs to be the
designated driver. I really mean all of the above.
KEITH KELLEY CLUB 2014 CHRISTMAS DINNER DANCE
—Less than 30 tickets left—
Christmas Dinner Dance will be held on December 13th at
the San Jose Holiday Inn, 1350 N. First Street, San
Jose, CA. All Retired KKC members attend free of charge,
guest ticket is $75. Send your dinner reservation to
Margie Thompson, 116 Fox Avenue, SJ 95110 and include
your check for $75 (for guest).
Cocktail Party — 5:30 to 6:30 pm
Cocktails General Members — 6:30 to 7:30 pm
7:30 to 9:00 pm
— 9:00 pm to Midnight
room rates are $89 plus tax per night (includes
breakfast for two). Call 408.453.6200 for reservations
and Mention the KKC.
Complete and Mail:
____ I’m Attending dinner dance _____
Bringing A Guest?
Mail to: Margie Thompson, 116 Fox Avenue, SJ 95110.
Tickets will be given at the door the night of the
To receive only the form by email that you can print,
send your request to
ANYONE ELSE FIND IT ENTERTAINING TO USE THE WORD
Listen up, you stupid people, this is important. We
retract last week’s rant about the Mercury News'
ignoring motormouth John Gruber — the MIT professor and
major architect of Obamacare — who was captured on video
several times admitting to his fellow liberal
academicians (a/k/a the “intellectually elite”) that he
and the Obama administration duped the American public
into passing Obamacare through a series of lies,
obfuscation and subterfuge, not to mention that on
multiple occasions he referred to us, the American
voters, as being “stupid.” It had to be painful for
Mercury News’ Editorial Board editor Barbara Marshman to
include the following OpEd by Charles Krauthammer in
last Friday’s paper, which begs the question: Did
Krauthammer’s syndication contract force the Mercury
News to publish it?
Confession’ Tells Truth About Obamacare
Charles Krauthammer — Syndicated Columnist
News — Nov. 14, 2014
— It’s not exactly the Ems Dispatch (the diplomatic
cable Bismarck doctored to provoke the 1870
Franco-Prussian War). But what the just-resurfaced
Gruber Confession lacks in historical consequence, it
makes up for in cynicism. This October 2013 video shows
MIT professor Jonathan Gruber, a principal architect of
Obamacare, admitting that, in order to get it passed,
the law was made deliberately obscure and deceptive.
Obamacare was sold on a pack of lies.
“Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage,”
said Gruber. “Call it the stupidity of the American
voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really
critical to getting the thing to pass.” First, Gruber
said, the bill’s authors manipulated the nonpartisan
Congressional Budget Office, which issues gold-standard
cost estimates of legislative proposals: “This bill was
written in a tortured way to make sure CBO did not score
the mandate as taxes.” Why? Because “if CBO scored the
mandate as taxes, the bill dies.” And yet, the president
himself openly insisted that the individual mandate —
what you must pay the government if you fail to buy
health insurance — was not a tax.
Worse was the pretense that Obamacare wouldn’t cost
Skeptics pointed out the obvious: You can’t subsidize 30
million uninsured without someone paying something.
Remember: The whole premise of Obamacare was that it
would help the needy, but if you were not in need, if
you liked what you had, you would be left alone. Which
is why Obama kept repeating — Politifact counted 31
times — that “if you like your plan, you can keep your
But you couldn’t, as millions discovered when they were
kicked off their plans last year, or discovered major
hikes in their premiums and deductibles. It was their
wealth that was being redistributed.
As NBC News and others reported last year, the
administration knew this all along. But White House
political hands overrode those wary about the
president’s phony promise.
It’s not unconstitutional to lie. But it is helpful for
citizens to know the cynicism with which the massive
federalization of their health care was crafted.
Last week, the Supreme Court agreed to hear a case
claiming the administration is violating its own health
care law, which specifies that subsidies can be given
only to insurance purchased on “exchanges established by
the state.” Just 13 states have set up such exchanges.
Yet the administration is giving tax credits to plans
bought on the federal exchange — serving 37 states —
despite what the law says.
If the government loses, the subsidy system collapses
and, with it, Obamacare itself. Which is why the
administration is frantically arguing that “exchanges
established by the state” is merely sloppy drafting, a
kind of legislative typo. And that the intent all along
was to subsidize all plans on all exchanges. Re-enter
professor Gruber. On a separate video in a different
speech, he explains what Obamacare intended: “If you’re
a state and you don’t set up an exchange, that means
your citizens don’t get their tax credits.” The
legislative idea was to coerce states into setting up
their own exchanges by otherwise denying their citizens
This may have been a stupid idea, but it was no slip.
And it’s the law, as written, as enacted and as
Now we know what lay behind Obama’s smooth reassurances
— the arrogance of an academic liberalism that rules in
the name of a citizenry it mocks, disdains and
deliberately, contemptuously deceives. Charles
Krauthammer is a Washington Post columnist.
~ ~ ~
As general news items go, it looks like the Gruber-Obamacare
issue has become such a hot potato that the mainstream
media can no longer keep it hidden, and that includes
the Mercury News. For those of you who watch Fox News
and are familiar with what the MIT professor has stated
a half-dozen times on camera, does this AP article
capture the outrage of those who have followed what’s
been going on? We report you decide…
Care Law’s Opponents Seize on Video of Adviser’s
—Economist claims its passage relied on deception—
Philip Elliott, Associated Press
News — Nov. 15, 2014
— Newly surfaced videos are adding fresh energy to the
efforts of congressional conservatives to repeal
President Barack Obama’s health care law, feeding into
their contentions that the overhaul was approved through
a scheme of deception.
Some are calling anew for hearings on the law, which is
about to begin its second year of coverage for millions
of Americans. And activists are telling lawmakers to
make good on their talk of scrapping the law or face
defeat in the next elections. The videos show MIT
economist Jonathan Gruber, an adviser in the law’s
drafting, saying that “the stupidity of the American
voter” helped Democrats pass the complex legislation.
“The Gruber clip has caught fire,” says David Bozell,
whose ForAmerica group campaigns against the health care
In one video, Gruber describes what he depicts as the
behind-the-scenes political strategy of the law’s
supporters. At a 2013 University of Pennsylvania public
forum, he says Americans’ lack of understanding helped
Democrats pass the legislation. Other impolitic
statements have continued to dribble out in which Gruber
claims that the law was written to deceive federal
budget watchdogs and mocks conservatives’ concerns over
health care policy. He has since disavowed the most
controversial remarks, saying he “spoke inappropriately
and I regret having made those comments.” Republicans,
who made big gains during last week’s midterm
congressional elections, have stood unified against the
law they deride as “Obamacare,” and they now point to
Gruber’s comments as yet another reason to dump it. They
say the remarks show a cynical strategy by Democrats to
camouflage the law’s politically unpalatable aspects and
sneak them past an unsuspecting public.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is among those calling for
hearings, perhaps including Gruber as a witness.
“This is what we complained about when we fought it for
all those months on the floor. Nobody understood it,”
McCain said. The videos have put Democrats on the
defensive. Traveling with Obama in Asia this week, White
House press secretary Josh Earnest defended the health
law and said he would “disagree vigorously” with
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco,
instrumental in the law’s passage, said she did not know
Gruber — despite having cited his analysis at least once
in the past during an on-camera briefing with reporters.
“He didn’t help write our bill,” she said this week.
Both policy and politics are in play for the GOP. If
congressional Republicans fail to push hard for repeal,
they’ll face angered activists. As the head of one
influential conservative organization met with activists
in Georgia this week, the mere mention of Gruber’s name
drew jeers and brought people to their feet.
“It certainly has lit a fire among the grass roots,”
said Heritage Action for America CEO Michael Needham.
“All it does is confirms what everyone knows: I don’t
think anyone in this country thought this law was passed
“How can you put another red penny toward this program?”
asks ForAmerica’s Bozell, “when the architect of it says
the only reason it passed is a lie?”
Many Republicans contend there was a lack of
transparency when the legislation was being put
together. However, according to Democratic tallies,
House lawmakers spent almost 100 hours and the Senate
more than 160 in public hearings and debate on the
measures, much of it televised on C-SPAN. Sen. Roy
Blunt, R-Mo., said Gruber’s comments show that “the
president and his party intentionally hid Obamacare’s
~ ~ ~
And then there’s this…
Digital Politics Editor — Nov. 17, 2014
was “some adviser” indeed
Obama on Sunday called Jonathan Gruber “some adviser who
never worked on our staff.” Obama told Chief White House
Correspondent Ed Henry that he had “just heard about”
the multiple times Gruber was caught on camera bragging
about helping the White House exploit “the stupidity of
the American voter” to pass the health law. But that
sure doesn’t gibe with new
DETAILS about the time when Obama summoned Gruber to
the Oval Office for an emergency meeting with a handful
of top advisers to salvage passage of ObamaCare amid a
2009 breakdown in the Democrat-controlled Congress.
Given the president’s
HUGELY CRUMMY REPUTATION FOR BEING FORTHCOMING about
his signature law, it seems that blowing off questions
about what appears to be evidence of an intentional lie
in the crafting of the law would be a bad idea.
The professor was a campaign prop - President Obama’s
re-election campaign featured the now-infamous MIT
economist Jonathan Gruber in a video, in which Team
Obama highlighted Gruber’s role in crafting ObamaCare to
attack claims made by former Massachusetts Governor and
2012 Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney. Watch
THE BEST OF THE LATE NITE JOKES
New York doctor who caught Ebola has been declared Ebola
free. President Obama called the doctor to thank him for
his selflessness and compassion. Then to be safe, Obama
threw his phone in a trash can and lit it on fire.
RadioShack just announced that it will open most of its
stores at 8 a.m. on Thanksgiving day. Of course experts
say those stores would do better if they opened even
earlier — like 1983.
RadioShack says it’s staying open to accommodate their
target demo: people who forgot to bring an iPhone
charger to their parents' house.
Randy Jackson announced that after 13 seasons, he will
not be returning to “American Idol.” He said he wanted
to go out when the show was on top, but then decided to
wait another seven years.
It's rumored that President Obama is planning to
announce a new 10-part immigration plan before
Thanksgiving. And you thought your family wouldn't have
anything to argue about this year.
Yesterday the Supreme Court lifted the ban on same-sex
marriage in Kansas. They didn't give a reason for the
ruling, but then again when a state is famous for a Judy
Garland musical about a rainbow and a wizard who comes
out of a closet, do you really need an excuse?
Prince took his first selfie yesterday with an actual
camera, because his publicist says he doesn't own a
cellphone. Or in other words, I guess he's still
partying like it's 1999.
After a six-year battle, the Senate will vote next week
to begin construction on the Keystone XL pipeline, which
is an oil pipeline that runs from Canada to the Gulf
Coast. They're hoping the pipeline will provide enough
oil to cover Kim Kardashian's next photo shoot.
The pipeline would run from Canada to the Gulf Coast.
It'll be the biggest underground structure leading into
the U.S. Then people in Mexico said, “Eh . . . second
This week Bill Clinton tweeted a photo of himself
reading George W. Bush's new book “41.” Then George W.
Bush responded to that post on Instagram. Then John
McCain said "You two are hilarious" by telegraph.
There are reports that leaders from ISIS and al-Qaida
met at a farm house in Syria last week, and agreed to
work together against their common enemies. That story
again: Two radical terrorist groups managed to do what
two American political parties cannot.
We had to postpone our U2 week here because Bono broke
his arm over the weekend. Our producers said, “Where
will we find another talented Irish guy on such short
notice?” and I said, “Ahem,” and they said, “Good point.
We’ll just cancel.”
One Direction member Zayn Malik missed the group's
concert on the Today show this morning because he was
sick. Then he and Bono high-fived and spent the rest of
the afternoon playing “Call of Duty.”
Kim Kardashian is heading to India to appear in the
eighth season of the country's version of “Big Brother.”
It makes sense that she’s going to India because if
you're going to "break the Internet," that’s the place
Yesterday Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria gave
outfielder Giancarlo Stanton a 13-year contract for $325
million — marking the first time a team's owner was
tested for drugs.
The Miami Marlins signed Giancarlo Stanton to a deal
worth $325 million, which is the biggest contract in
American sports history. When asked what he would buy
with $325 million, Stanton said, “the Miami Marlins."
Washington state just had its first marijuana auction
and ended up selling 300 pounds of pot for $600,000. And
it was all bought by a customer from out of state —
named Giancarlo Stanton.
It's rumored that Kim Kardashian may buy a private
island near Australia. Because if there's one thing she
can't live without, it's her privacy.
China criticized President Obama for chewing gum while
entering the economic summit in Beijing. They're saying
he looked like a rapper. Then again, to be fair, in
China I look like a rapper.
At the economic summit in China, Vladimir Putin is being
accused of flirting with the first lady of China. Then
again, Putin does have a history of not respecting
Yesterday the scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson fact-checked
"Interstellar." Because if there's one movie I expect to
be believable, it's the one where Matthew McConaughey
plays an astrophysicist.
In Beaumont, California, two people have lined up over
two weeks early at Best Buy for Black Friday. The two
people said they're hoping to get a great deal on a
The Secret Service said there have been 40 fence-jumping
incidents at the White House in the past five years.
Half of them were intruders trying to get in. The other
half was President Obama trying to get out.
Developers are working on a new app that gives you a
10-second warning before an earthquake. The app is
called "Too Late."
Usher has announced that his next single will be
available exclusively in boxes of Honey Nut Cheerios.
The single is called "I Can't Believe It's Come to
Warren Buffett's company has bought Duracell for $6.4
billion. I think he overpaid because batteries were not
Pope Francis announced that next year he is coming to
the United States, or as Fox News is reporting it,
"Obama lets in yet another guy from South America."
President Obama has pledged $3 billion to aid poor
nations. All of that $3 billion is going to the United
Yesterday the DEA raided several NFL teams suspected of
giving prescription painkillers to their players. In its
defense, the New York Jets’ doctor said, "We don't give
painkillers to our players. We give them to our fans."
Yesterday U2 singer Bono injured himself in a cycling
accident. Even worse, guitarist The Edge was
accidentally sanded down to a rounded curve.
Charles Manson has applied for a license to marry his
26-year-old girlfriend, who calls herself "Star." There
you go, folks, another eHarmony success story.
That's right, Charles Manson has applied for a license
to marry a 26-year-old girlfriend. Must be tough for
single women out there. First Clooney, and then Benedict
Cumberbatch, and now Manson. All the good ones are
Scientists say the European space probe that landed on
the comet has detected organic matter. This means there
could be either life in space or a Whole Foods. We just
This week a group of activists, known as Anonymous,
hacked the Twitter account of the KKK. The KKK is
furious. They said Anonymous is just a bunch of cowards
who don't have the courage to show their faces.
couple of guys busted into a store here in the
neighborhood and stole $2 million worth of money and
watches. The police described them as armed and
Stocks are at an all-time high today. I don't have any
money in the stock market. I don't have the stomach for
the ups and downs. So about 20 years ago I put all of my
money and liquid assets into videotape rewind machines.
Once you're president, you can't go anywhere without
causing trouble. President Obama shows up in China, he's
chewing gum, they go crazy. A big stink because the
president's chewing gum. And you think, the Chinese are
so easygoing about human rights. What's the problem?
Child labor, not a problem. Censorship, not a problem.
Torture, not a problem. Chewing gum in China — oh, my
God! You better not be over here chewing gum.
The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade has new balloons this
year including the Pillsbury Doughboy balloon and the
first openly gay balloon. Also the Thomas Tank Engine
balloon, and they even have the Ebola nurse balloon.
We thought New York City was home to 8 million rats.
Turns out, that's a little high. The actual number is 2
million rats. That explains the light turnout for the
Doritos-flavored Mountain Dew is coming. You drink it,
you get a combination of type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Big movie opens this weekend: "Dumb and Dumber To." It
stars Alex Rodriguez and Jose Canseco.
The Pope is coming to New York City. He said he would
like to hold audiences with the downtrodden. He's
talking about the Jets and the Giants.
The Pope also said that while he's in town he would like
to go see "The Book of Mormon."
Scientists discovered a virus that makes you dumb. And
another virus that makes you dumber. You get the virus
from eating green algae. That will cause the dumb virus
to kick in. And I'm thinking: Seriously, you're eating
green algae? I mean, you're already dumb.
Yesterday Charles Manson made the announcement that he’s
getting married, and today he’s being congratulated by
the voices in his head.
The Manson wedding ceremony will be in Venice with
guests Brad Pitt, Bono, Beyoncé, Cindy Crawford, Tony
Orlando, Bernie and Ruth Madoff, and Lou Rawls.
Here in New York City they are converting telephone
booths into Wi-Fi hot spots. Because we have very few
phone booths left, Clark Kent — Superman — has to use
the men's room at Starbucks.
Dynasty" musical is in the works. It's predicted to be
very popular with fans of "Duck Dynasty" who also love
musical theater. In other words, nobody. Actors who
audition should be proficient in singing, dancing, and
hiding their sexual orientation.
I wonder what the "Duck Dynasty" musical will be called?
Perhaps "Quackin' in the Rain." "Fiddler on the Pond."
Or "Hello Ducky."
A tiger has been seen running around Paris. Citizens
were told to stay indoors and do whatever's necessary to
protect the wine and cheese. They should leave home only
to smoke and to judge others.
When Parisians first heard about a giant predator on the
loose, they assumed it was Gerard Depardieu.
Happy 60th birthday to new-age star Yanni. It's also
Prince Charles' birthday today. Here's the thing,
though. He turns 66. One more six and you would have the
number of the beast.
Prince Charles celebrates his birthday the same day
"Dumb and Dumber To" opens. Coincidence?
Now Jim Carrey of "Dumb and Dumber To" and Prince
Charles are very different, of course. One's a cartoon
character with bad teeth who really makes me laugh. The
other one is Jim Carrey.
"Dumb and Dumber To" might have a little bit of potty
humor. If you don't like middle-aged guys telling jokes
about pee-pee and poo-poo, why are you watching this
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels refused to do this movie
without each other. That's sweet. My sidekick Geoff and
I have a similar agreement regarding talk shows. Unless
Andy Richter's available.
We've got Metallica on tonight. For Metallica, it's nine
studio albums, four live albums, 26 music videos, 37
singles, and one huge favor to a low-budget late-night
The producers of this show worried that Metallica might
trash the stage. Look at this dump. If they trash the
stage, it will cause thousands of dollars of
The typical CBS viewer is not used to heavy metal. When
the typical CBS viewer says "Enter Sandman," it's
because he needs an afternoon nap.
Back in the day, there was antagonism between heavy
metal fans and punk rockers. But bands like Metallica
bridged the gap. If you were a punk, it was OK to like
Metallica even though they had long hair and most of
Today is Latvian Independence Day. It's been 96 years
since Latvia broke free from Russia. And about two years
until Russia takes them back.
It's also Mickey Mouse Day. On this day in 1928, the
first Mickey Mouse film, "Steamboat Willie," premiered.
Mickey Mouse is also a slang term for something cheap or
poorly made. So around here, every day is Mickey Mouse
There's a new David Bowie album. I'll explain. An album
is a collection of songs meant to be played in order.
And you're supposed to pay for it, not find it on your
phone like spam. Hear that Bono, you bombastic but
David Bowie's new album is a greatest hits collection
called "Nothing Has Changed." On the cover he looks in
the mirror and says nothing has changed. When I look in
the mirror I say, "Hello, grandpa."
European Space Agency landed a probe on a comet 317
million miles from Earth. When you get discouraged by
how much attention people pay to Kim Kardashian's
buttocks, remember that there are also people out there
that know how to land a spacecraft on a moving comet 317
million miles away. They're out there.
Sharon Osbourne announced that "The Osbournes" is coming
back to TV. Sharon said Ozzy looked back on his life and
he wished he could have done the show when he was clean
and sober. Well, maybe he does, but we don't. We want a
Nobody wants to see Ozzy Osbourne on a treadmill eating
Today is the day that only 10 years ago would have made
no sense whatsoever. It's National Unfriend Day. This is
a day I founded five years ago. National Unfriend Day is
like a juice cleanse for your Facebook page.
National Unfriend Day is not fun, but you will feel like
a new person. You go through the list of Facebook
friends and say goodbye to people that aren't your
friends. You don't have thousands of friends.
Think of it as "restrangering," not unfriending. If you
would not invite them to dinner, they're not a friend.
Meanwhile, Facebook is showing no sign whatsoever that
they will ever leave us alone. They're developing
“Facebook at Work.” We already have a Facebook for
people at work. It's called Facebook.
Tonight I am going to reveal the identity of People
magazine's "sexiest man alive." I want you to know I
withdrew myself from consideration. I didn't think it
would be fair since I'm the one making the announcement.
Not only am I going to reveal the sexiest man alive,
we're going to beam him in here via Skype to officially
anoint him. I have never felt more powerful or less
attractive than I do today.
“Sexiest man alive” is like the nuclear launch code of
The criteria for sexiest man alive is very strict.
First, you must be sexy. Second, you must be alive. If
you're ugly or dead, forget about it, you're not going
to win. We'll see who wins in about 10 minutes. I hope
it's somebody fat this year, I really do.
to a new report, Detroit, Michigan, is the most
dangerous city in the country with Oakland, California,
coming in second. And the third most dangerous was
somehow Detroit again.
Kobe Bryant last night missed his 13,418th shot,
breaking the record for most shots missed in an NBA
career. Said his teammates, “I’m open!”
According to recent reports, hipsters in the Middle East
are being confused for jihadists because of their long
beards. That's good.
Yesterday, while flying over Germany, the cargo door
fell off of Bono’s jet. And somehow, it landed in my
A teenager in Arkansas was arrested after he was caught
driving without a license on his way to the DMV to take
a driving test, tried to flee, and crashed into a police
car. On the plus side, it sounds like he was probably
going to fail anyway.
Miami Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton has signed
the biggest contract in American sports history, worth
$325 million over 13 years. What could possibly go
A New York plastic surgeon has announced that he is
creating “vacation breasts,” which are implants that
would last two to three weeks. That’s amazing, isn’t it?
Who gets a three-week vacation?
Last week a Florida woman and her 20-year-old daughter
gave birth within three hours of each other at the same
hospital. I guess there’s nothing like giving birth to
take the edge off becoming a grandma.
Charles Manson is getting married — which is weird
because I thought he was already serving a life
A man in California was arrested after he stabbed his
potential employer during a job interview. Well, at
least now he knows where he sees himself in five years.
Justin Bieber will reportedly spend the next two weeks
with a pastor to learn how to spread the word of God.
“It won’t be easy, but I think it will make me a better
person” — said the pastor.
WEEKLY SNOPES URBAN LEGEND UPDATE AS OF NOV. 15, 2014
The facts behind the legends, information and
misinformation that has or may show up in your inbox
• Were 37 million bees killed after a large
GMO corn field was planted in Ontario?
• Did actor
Macaulay Culkin die?
• Did astronaut
Buzz Aldrin admit the Apollo 11 moon landing was
faked using a movie set?
Monster brand energy drinks use a Hebrew equivalent
of the number 666 in their logo?
• Pepsi is making a
Doritos-flavored Mountain Dew?
• Are ongoing tetanus
vaccine campaigns in Kenya a ruse to sterilize women
of childbearing age?
• Have hundreds of thousands of
Thanksgiving turkeys been contaminated with Ebola?
• Can you can receive a $200
Macy's gift card by following three simple steps on
• Did "Obamacare architect"
Jonathan Gruber recently say Obamacare passed only
due to the "stupidity" of the American voter and a lack
of "transparency," and was video footage of his remarks
deleted from the internet?
• Was an
airliner saved by a pickup truck after its landing
• Did dozens of people die of
marijuana overdoses on the day recreational use
became legal in Oregon?
• A dollar store princess wand called the
"Evilstick" reportedly harbors a hidden image of a
demonic girl cutting her wrists.
• Is a
Facebook page giving away hundreds of PlayStation
consoles because they have been unsealed and cannot be
• A request from
Bill Cosby on Twitter for fan-submitted memes
Kissing bugs in the U.S. have been found to carry a
• Eau Claire schools canceled a planned
Veteran's Day ceremony over concerns about a 21-gun
• A Canadian man's
open letter to American voters goes viral.
• Does the Wendy's hamburger chain use
horse meat in their burgers?
• Did a frustrated
Chick-fil-A manager named Eric post a list of banned
• Has a restaurant in Los Angeles been granted legal
serve dog meat?
WD-40 run an advertisement in 1964 that was full of
• Is Disney producing an animated film with
openly gay characters?
Purina Cat Chow caused several cats to become ill
• Did a UN official lambaste the "entitlement" of the
parents of slain
Ferguson teen Mike Brown after they addressed the
United Nations Committee Against Torture?
• Did a Maryland school district
remove Christmas and Easter vacations from school
calendars due to pressure from Muslim groups?
• Should dog owners avoid
Exer-Hides brand rawhide chew products?
• Updated: Were
voting machines in Cook County, Illinois rigged to
We write stuff. But that doesn't necessarily mean
people read it.
Walmart stores started offering Halal meat in their
Did Congress eliminate the child tax credit, the
earned income tax credit (EITC), and mortgage deductions
from the tax code under pressure from lobby groups and
the Koch brothers?
• Did NASA's
Mars rover Curiosity find a fish fossil near the
Windjana drilling target?
Simon Malls fining store owners for every hour they
refuse to open on Thanksgiving?
• Rumor says the
Jim Henson Company is producing a sequel to 1986's
• Are lottery winners
sharing their fortunes with social media users?
• Do circulating images depict a
"bloody" Muslim ritual that took place in Atlanta?
• Don't forget to visit our
Daily Snopes page for a collection of odd news
stories from around the world!
Worth a Second Look
Steven Spielberg get his start in the film industry
by sneaking into Universal Studios and commandeering an
Still Haunting the Inbox
• Check out our 25
Hottest Urban Legends list to keep abreast of what's
circulating in the on-line world.
• Visit our
Top Scams page for a list of schemes commonly used
by crooks to separate the unwary from their money.
THE LIGHTER SIDE & OTHER ODDS AND ENDS
or Full Screen recommended for YouTube videos.
• • • • •
“Control, I’ll be in pursuit of…uh…never mind!”
This video received from Les Nunes of professional rally
champion Ken Block piloting an 845 HP all-wheel-drive
’65 Mustang is one of the wildest, action-filled
automotive clips we’ve ever seen. Watch as he tears up
the surface streets and freeways in and around L.A., and
note the number of LAPD patrol cars that were used to
close off the streets. Les notes that the video is so
well produced and subtle in spots that if you pay
special attention at the 7:35 mark, you will see Ken
passing the slow-speed chase of the LAPD following The
Juice in the white Bronco on the Santa Monica freeway.
Among the many sponsors of the big budget video were
Ford and Go-Pro. Fasten your seat belt, click
HERE and hang on. (12:08)
• • • • •
The immigration issue Obama and Congress are wrestling
over in Washington is likely to lead to more parodies
like this one. Give a
LISTEN to Rusty Humphries and his Beachboys-like
rendition of “Sneaking’ in to the USA.” (2:47)
• • • • •
Our opinion about this video is similar to Bob
Tenbrink’s, except that we take it a step further. If
these students at Texas Tech are indicative of the
majority of college students around the rest of the
nation, we might as well throw in the towel because
THIS experiment we call America is sure to come to
an end. (3:07)
• • • • •
When these two musicians take the stage with their
cellos in front of a mostly young audience they
immediately get booed. But they soldier on despite the
cat calls. Stick with the clip for at least 60 seconds
WATCH what happens next. (5:30)
• • • • •
Behold this short Sci-Fi film promoting the Rosetta
Project in which the ESA (European Space Agency)
successfully landed a space probe on a big ball of ice
and rock that is commonly referred to as a comet. The
special effects alone make this worth
• • • • •
If you care about military aviation history you should
THIS video about the very first Air Force One of
interest, and if you do, don’t be shy about sharing it
with others. Hang around to the end and you will see
• • • • •
Both Lumpy and Paul Gardner felt
THIS story told by Tony Orlando that was posted on
Facebook should be worth a few minutes of your time,
especially if you consider yourself a patriot. (4:53)
• • • • •
Those of you who know what “auto-correct” means on your
computer, tablet or smart phone should get a chuckle out
THIS Motel 6 ad received from Dirk Parsons. (0:30)
• • • • •
CONTRIBUTION for you avid football fans from my
brother-in-law. It’s described as “The Greatest Comeback
That Never Was.” (7:49)
• • • • •
And from my
sister-in-law came this clip that proves Thanksgiving
isn’t just for humans. Note the little Pilgrim’s hats on
THESE tiny critters. (1:51)
• • • • •
Have you signed up for Medicare Part G yet? It’s the new
Nursing Home Plan for America's aging citizens.
Let’s say you are an ill senior citizen and the
government says no nursing home care is available for
you. So what do you do? This is where Medicare Part G
The plan gives any ill person age 65 years or older a
gun, 4 bullets and a license to shoot four politicians.
This means, of course, that you will be sent to prison
where you will receive three meals a day, a roof over
your head, central heating and air conditioning, cable
TV, access to a library and all the health care you
Need new teeth? No problem. Glasses? You got ‘em. How
about a hearing aid, a new hip, knee, kidney, lung,
heart transplant or a sex change operation? They are all
covered. And because you're a prisoner, you no longer
have to pay income taxes. As for visits, your kids can
come see you at least as often as they see you now!
So who will be paying for all of this? The same
government, of course, that told you they can't afford
for you to go into a home.
Oh, and as a bonus, there will be four fewer politicians
society will have to deal with, most of whom are
lawyers. So it’s a win-win for 99 percent of the aging
Is this a great country or what?
• • • • •
You former members of the Mounted Unit are going to love
THIS clip received from Dirk Parsons. It shows what
happened after a squid on a Suzuki GSXR popped a wheelie
in Central London. (1:53)
• • • • •
Check out the changing emotions on the face of this
adorable little towhead as she sits in the backseat of
her folks’ car and
WATCHES a movie on the rear DVD entertainment
• • • • •
This is a feel-good
STORY about a blind, dying fawn named Dillie that
was nursed back to health and now has her own bedroom
attached to her rescuers’ home in Canal Fulton, Ohio.
• • • • •
Want to learn a
SIMPLE TRICK with a banana that is guaranteed to
entertain a grandchild? Or you can prepare a couple
ahead of time and amaze everyone at the Thanksgiving
dinner table. (1:21)
• • • • •
Note: We have not been able to confirm the
PBA President Dave Wysuph claims he heard that
former motor cops Bruce Morton and Brian Bennert
used this written test instead of the standard DUI
sobriety tests because they could administer it
without the need to dismount their motors.
• • • • •
This news report about an apparently
PREGNANT MOTHER and her young son panhandling, then
driving off with her husband in a Mercedes might make
you clench your jaws in anger, so be prepared. If it
does, try to refrain from throwing a brick at your
computer screen. (P.S. She might be wearing a pillow
under her shirt for additional sympathy.) (2:46)
• • • • •
This short clip of
TIPS could prove useful under certain circumstances.
Or not. Give ‘em a look. (1:57)
• • • • •
A handful of readers sent in this music video titled
“Dancing at the Movies.” It’s a compilation from nearly
40 Hollywood productions from Fred Astaire to Michael
Jackson — all set to “Footloose” by Kenny Loggins. How
many of the movies can
YOU name? (4:44)
• • • • •
Staying with the dancing theme, we decided to close this
week’s Farsider with our two favorite flashdance
performances. Why? Because we can.
This first one is, to our knowledge, the original
performance that started the flashdance craze back in
2009. Making its third appearance in the Farsider are
150 dancers who gathered at the Antwerp Central Station
in Belgium and broke out in dance to “Do Re Mi” from the
"Sound of Music." Click
HERE to watch the performers' happy feet. (4:01)
Our all-time favorite flashdance, however, is this one
that was filmed in Moscow, Russia in Feb. of 2012. It's
an encore presentation from two years ago. Far more
elaborate than the "Sound of Music" performance above,
this one is made up of hundreds of dancers who gathered
together in cold and rainy weather to dance to Irving
Berlin’s “Puttin on the Ritz” from 1929. If you have
stereotyped the youth of Russia as seldom smiling and
devoid of personality, you will be in for a big
• • • • •
Pic of the Week
It’s amazing what you can find on the Internet. For
this couple that posed for the painting “American
were photographed standing next to the famous portrait.
What isn't widely known is that these two are their