Wednesday, March 29, 2006

A Fresh Look at Old Farts

My husband, ever eager to teach our children life skills, bent over to turn on the vacuum and farted audibly. He turned to our five and four year old children, James and Emma, who paid careful attention to the vacuum demonstration and said, “James farted.”

James looked indignant briefly and quickly countered, “Emma cut one.”

Emma gave her father a long steady look and said, “No, seriously James farted.”

My husband says he’s teaching important life lessons, political skills. I find this farfetched since Emma already exaggerates, embellishes and lies with the poise and spontaneity of a politician. As parents in Oakland we don’t get to play politics much, we’re too busy working two jobs to pay for the mortgage and the private schools.

Our family falls between the demographic cracks we get to check all the boxes for ethnicity and we earn enough live in Oakland, but not enough to buy political favors. My husband and I don’t matter and I don’t mind if we are left out of the discussion about Oakland’s future. Emma and James though they deserve a place at the table.

Here and now makes our children what they will become tomorrow and Mayor Brown and the Oakland City Council have failed Oakland’s children miserably. We had a youth and child sex industry blossom under the careful management of these “crime stoppers.” If you vilify minority youth for political gain, why should you be surprised when they are then exploited for profit? If you promise pork and cut deals to better serve voter rich affluent neighborhoods while schools and other city services disappear in poorer neighborhoods, how can you than be “shocked” when youth create their own entertainment by driving in cars.

I can’t bear to hear more promises of pork, police and bond initiatives. I want to hear an acceptance of failure and a sincere apology from Council President Ignacio De La Fuente to the children and parents of Oakland because his mistakes and mismanagement have cost our children their lives, their dreams and their futures. The Oakland City Council stinks up the council chambers with their sweet deals for developers, gaseous rhetoric, stupidity and arrogance then when bad things happen on their watch, they blame our kids. Come on Ignacio you farted, all we want is a simple, “excuse me.”

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Money Money Money

Well, payroll's getting better but not fixed. Hospital employees aired their concerns with the Board and the Medical Center now has a real investigative reporter covering it. J. Douglas Allen-Taylor one of Oakland's best thinkers and writers has made us his beat. I may be out of business.

To read all about it click here:

Where's Waldo?

Bad managers just keep leaving ACMC. They just slip away and disappear since we got the new executive team. Waldo who Cambio put in charge of John George Psychiatric Pavilion has slipped quietly away. To read all about it click here:

Ta Ta Waldo!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The Sykes Saga

Saga or a Soap Opera? Our ousted trustee continues to play to the press. Carson continues to act like a gentleman and well life goes on. The Authority Board Bylaws don't contemplate the possibility of a board member not acting in the best interest of the Medical Center or having a mental or emotional breakdown. Perhaps they will be modified to protect the Medical Center from villains, Sheriffs and opportunists who would like to loot Measure "A" and close the Medical Center from inside the Boardroom.

For the latest installment in our own little daytime TV drama click here:

Adios Chainsaw

So Sheriff Charles Plummer’s announced his retirement effective January 2007, promises promises. I went to look into the details of his departure and found this great link.

It turns out Charlie was in charge of the Berkeley Police in 1969 with the free speech movement. I was 5 but I remember the tanks in front of our house, the teargas and the police pushing my father. Charlie and I go way back, so I say, “Hasta la vista Chainsaw!” To check out a great link and add your own insights click here:

Friday, March 10, 2006

SEIU Contract Approved

Unions members (all ACMC providers except the RNs) exhausted from endless inspection and negotiation voted three to one to accept a management settlement offer. To read the details on the SEIU website click here: