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Comments by OwenDell

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Posted on July 18 at 5:59 a.m.

The European experiment you describe is very interesting (and bold!). I traveled through Vietnam a few years ago. There are no traffic controls. There is a steady flow of motorbikes, bicycles, a few cars, some trucks, and pedestrians, at an incredibly high density. When I say "high density" I mean that there is ZERO room for any more vehicles or bodies anywhere. Nobody ever stops for anyone, and yet there seemed to be very few accidents. It works like this: everyone honks their horns all the time (this part is hard to really appreciate), everyone looks out for everyone else, and there is a constant, complex set of individual adjustments to flow based on changing conditions.

For instance, to cross a street as a pedestrian, you make eye contact with the oncoming river of vehicles. Then you step out into the street (with heart racing) and miraculously the vehicles flow around you as if you were a boulder in a stream. You make eye contact one more time and take another step. And so forth, very slowly, until you are eventually across the street. You have to see how this works to believe it. It is truly amazing, and I came to believe that Vietnamese drivers (and pedestrians) are probably among the best in the world. Something to think about.

On Where to Ride My Bike

Posted on June 17 at 8:44 p.m.

Vegel states that their recent inspections found “overall, no safety-significant issues.” With the weasel word "overall" in there, one can only conclude that there were safety-significant issues. So what were they, and why did the supervisors not press them on this?

On Diablo Canyon Safe, Say Nuclear Regulators

Posted on May 16 at 6:31 a.m.

Where is the meeting?

On Support Fairview Gardens : May 17th

Posted on April 15 at 2:11 p.m.

I was talking about more like a 50% reduction or even more. Remember, there was life before there was electricity, so yes we can do it.

I don't have the figures on top of my head, but I know that it's well documented that we need to cut WAY back on our lifestyle, especially energy use, if we're going to survive.

Alternative energy won't save us if we insist on continuing to live the way we are living now. Nobody wants to hear that, even the so-called green people, but it's the reality of what we are up against.

There's plenty of information out there on energy descent and the science seems good.

On It Ain't Easy Being Green

Posted on April 15 at 6:08 a.m.

All this activity so that we can go on using unconscionable amounts of energy. What is so green about continuing to feed the monster of our consumptive lifestyle? Where is restraint in this conversation?

On It Ain't Easy Being Green

Posted on April 15 at 4:45 a.m.

The former director ("CEO") who resigned was Ed Schneider, not Fife Symington. Symington was the Chairman of the Board of Directors; he also resigned. The volunteers did not lose their jobs, they went on strike to protest conditions at the Garden under the Schneider/Symington administration. And "historical boarders" should be "historical borders." This article is not up to the usual standards of the Independent and should have been fact-checked and proofread before being published.

That having been said, it is refreshing to see the progress being made at SB Botanic Garden. Many long-time supporters of the Garden who watched with dismay as conditions deteriorated over many years of mismanagement are delighted with the new leadership and looking forward to much better days ahead for this beloved and valuable institution.

On Botanic Garden Gets the Ball Rolling on Renovation Goals

Posted on November 22 at 4:48 p.m.

I'm very sorry to hear that Dave is no longer with us. He had a huge heart, a keen intellect, and an unflagging passion for justice. There are very few with his courage, perseverance, and good naturedness in the face of terrible evils. And he was funny, lighthearted, inspiring. I could go on and on. A beautiful man who was unfailingly kind to all.

On David P. Wass, 1928-2010

Posted on August 20 at 5:49 a.m.

I have nearly fallen just walking across the water at that spot. It's treacherous and should have been fixed decades ago. There is no reason I can imagine why a culvert could not be put in there. It's just plain negligent on the part of the County to have let this go on as long as it has.

On Bella Vista Bicycle Crash Victim Files Claim

Posted on August 14 at 11:36 p.m.

Gee, I forgot how hard it is to get an intelligent discussion going here. I'll just keep my mouth shut next time.

On West Beach Fest Pushes Back

Posted on August 14 at 9:26 a.m.

It appears there are pretty significant failings on both sides here.

Everyone, including the promoters, admits that previous shows have been a disaster for the community. The brothers seem to be trying to do better, but it sounds like they still have a lot to learn.

On the other hand, a last-minute shakedown for more money, apparently reneging on the agreement between the parties, seems to be an injustice. It's not unlike what the City has done to some of the medical marijuana dispensaries, making them jump through all kinds of hoops and invest huge amounts of money, and then once they're up and running the City changes the rules of the game and puts them out of business. That's not fair.

If I were to put a gun to somebody's head and demand $93,000, I'd go to prison for a long time. If this is a legally defensible claim for fees, then fine. But if it's arbitrary and if it violates what the parties have agreed to, then it looks a lot like extortion. This late-hour demand is ham-handed at best and unconscionable at worst. Nancy Rapp is a good administrator who's clearly looking out for the community's interests, but I think she's making a big misstep, at least from a public relations perspective. Right or wrong, it's got to really gall a lot of people who are looking at the picture from the outside and wondering why government has the right to push people around like this. No wonder so many citizens have such contempt for authority.

A very complex and interesting situation. The big question is, what's best for the community?

On West Beach Fest Pushes Back

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