The Starting Line—UT-San Diego’s Soviet-Style Election Coverage. Are Airbrushed Photos Next?

This is how another ‘Papa’ did things

UT-San Diego editor Jeff Light has always challenged critics of the paper’s ownership to see if they can find any bias in the paper’s news coverage that reflects the unabashed right wing political leanings of publisher Doug Manchester and CEO John Lynch. One need look no further than today’s edition of the paper and its failure to report any forum or debate occurring in San Diego yesterday that might have aired views in opposition to UT-San Diego’s editorial stances.

There were six, count em, six, debates and forums throughout San Diego yesterday, but for readers of our daily newspaper the only one that occurred was the “televised” event that was staged in UT-San Diego’s broadcast studio.  UT Editorial Director William Osborne (whose name was misspelled on the screen) hosted a “debate” about Proposition 30 featuring local labor leader Lorena Gonzalez and ‘Lincoln Club member’ Paul Robinson. It turns out that Robinson has a business relationship with UT-SD-TV publisher Doug Manchester; he represents the legal interests of Papa Doug’s Grand Del Mar resort.

Not mentioned in today’s paper were a debate between candidates for the San Diego City Council District One seat, a forum for SDUSD School Board candidates, sponsored by the League of Women Voters and Up for Ed, a Balboa Park rally held by supporters of school bond construction Proposition Z, a multi-candidate (six contenders, including Mayoral candidate Bob Filner and Congressional candidate Scott Peters appeared) forum on sustainability issues, and a PTA sponsored appearance by civil rights lawyer Molly Munger in support of Proposition 38.

What’s next? Airbrushing people out of pictures?

San Onofre Nuke Plant to Restart? No Way! Say Activists

A proposal submitted yesterday by Southern California Edison (SCE) to restart one of the failed generators units at the San Onofre nuclear power plant has nearby residents and anti-nuclear activists up in arms.  The company is proposing to Nuclear Regulatory Commission to run generator Unit 2 at 70% capacity for a five month period.

Ron Litzinger, president of SCE, issued a press release, saying “Safety is our top priority and after conducting more than 170,000 inspections to understand and prevent the problem, and confirming the corrective actions we have taken to solve the problem with the top experts from around the world, we have concluded that Unit 2 at San Onofre can be operated safely,”

 “The suggestion that the Unit 2 reactor can be restarted throws safety under the profit bus,” said Carol Jahnkow of the Peace Resource Center of San Diego. “They are rushing to restart this unsafe reactor to keep the revenue stream flowing from rate-payers.Edison’s safety plan to restart San Onofre is to watch for radiation leaks”

Organizers have called for a rally and press conference in opposition to continued operation of the San Onofre nuclear plant at 5:00 p.m., October 9, just prior to the 6:00 p.m. public meeting conducted by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) at the St. Regis Monarch Bay Hotel, 1 Monarch Beach Resort North, Dana Point, California

 Sierra Club Lawsuit Halts Del Mar Expansion Plans

 A Superior Court judge ruled yesterday that planned expansion of the Del Mar Fairgrounds cannot proceed further, citing a flawed environmental review process.  The ruling by Judge Ronald Prager was prompted by litigation initiated by the Sierra Club because of concerns about impacts of the proposed development on wetlands, biological resources, traffic, greenhouse gases, and water supply.

The proposed plan by the 22nd Agricultural District that was the subject of the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) providing for one million square feet of new construction and renovation, including construction of a 330-room hotel/condominium, convention complex, health club, sports fields, multi-level parking structure, and paving of historical wetlands for additional parking.  While the hotel was not approved by the District due to the economy, the Sierra Club was concerned that future development could be approved at a later time without appropriate environmental review.

 WalMart Workers Walkout in Los Angeles

Photo from UFCW

A group called OUR Walmart successfully pulled off a one day strike yesterday impacting nine stores in the Los Angeles region.  The job action was the first time in Walmart’s 50-year history that workers at multiple stores have gone on strike, despite the fact their jobs are not protected by a labor union.

The job action was supported by the United Food and Commercial Workers and the LA Alliance for a New Economy. The strikers walked out after complaints about working conditions and low pay were met with threats, suspensions and terminations.  They said they plan to return to work today.

Employees at the discount chain have filed more than 20 charges of unfair labor practices across the country with the National Labor Relation Board in recent weeks alleging that workers have either been fired or had their hours reduced after activity with OUR Walmart..  A spokesperson for the company dismissed yesterday’s walkout as a publicity stunt, saying that operations in the various locations were not impacted.

Occupy San Diego Celebrates its First Anniversary

The various manifestations of Occupy San Diego along with other activist groups will be hold events this weekend in commemoration of the onset last year’s protests in San Diego.

Occupy San Diego, Veterans for Peace, Women Occupy San Diego, Occupy City Heights, Canvass for a Cause, Food Solidarity Coalition, OccupyYrCorner, Peace Resource Center and other groups are staging events on Saturday and Sunday.

Events will kick off Saturday with a meetup in Balboa Park near the intersection of 6th and Nutmeg Streets starting at noon, followed by a pot-luck meal.  Workshops are planned until 5:30, covering topics like food justice, outreach, new economy and corporate privatization.

These will be followed with an Occupy San Diego celebration rally, a ‘light march’ to the Canvass for a Cause offices at 3705 10th Avenue and close with an OSD birthday party at that location.

Sunday’s activities will begin at 10 am with a meet up at the San Diego Civic Center, site of last year’s extended occupation, led by San Diego Veterans for Peace. At 11;30 the vets will lead a ‘dirge march’ to the USS Midway location followed by an Afghanistan War memorial and anti war demonstration. A ‘Looking Forward’  General Assembly and Open Mic will occur at Midway Parks starting at 3pm, and the day will conclude with a gathering at Children’s Park, the site where Occupy San Diego started out. For more information go here.

Quote of the Day: A member of Parliament to Disraeli:”Sir, you will either die on the gallows or ofsome unspeakable disease.”
“That depends, Sir,” said Disraeli, “on whether I embrace your policies or your mistress.”

On this Day: In 1947 President Harry S Truman held the first televised presidential address from the White House. In 1962 “Love Me Do” by the Beatles was released in the U.K. It was their first single. In 1969 “Monty Python’s Flying Circus” debuted onBBC television.

Eat Fresh! Today’s Farmers’ Markets: Fallbrook (102 S. Main, at Alvarado) 10 am – 2 pm, Imperial Beach  (Seacoast Dr. at Pier Plaza) 2 – 7:30 pm, Kearny Mesa (No. Island Credit Union pkg lot  5898 Copley) 10:30 am – 1:30 pm, La Mesa Village  (Corner of Spring St. and University) 2 – 6 pm, Rancho Bernardo (Bernardo Winery parking lot 13330 Paseo del Verano Norte) 9 am – noon, Southeast San Diego (4981 Market St. West of Euclid Ave. Trolley Station)2 – 6 pm

Did you enjoy this article? Subscribe to “The Starting Line” and get an email every time a new article in this series is posted!

I read the Daily Fishwrap(s) so you don’t have to… Catch “the Starting Line” Monday thru Friday right here at San Diego Free Press (dot) org. Send your hate mail and ideas to DougPorter@SanDiegoFreePress.Org    Check us out on Facebook and Twitter.


Doug Porter

Doug Porter was active in the early days of the alternative press in San Diego, contributing to the OB Liberator, the print version of the OB Rag, the San Diego Door, and the San Diego Street Journal. He went on to have a 35 year career in the Hospitality business and decided to go back into raising hell when he retired. He's won awards for 'Daily Reporting and Writing: Opinion/Editorial' from the Society of Professional Journalists in 2013, 2014 and 2015. Doug is a cancer survivor (sans vocal chords) and lives in North Park.
Subscribe to "The Starting Line" and get an email every time a new article is posted!


  1. avatarDavid says

    Let Them Eat Dust An essay by Dave Beekman Spring Valley Ca Nov 19 2012

    While reading one of our local papers lately I noticed an article heralding the fact that the Metropolitan Water District had secured future water rights from the farmers of Imperial county in order to continue supplying water for land development in Southern California where little natural water exists.

    It seems that there is only so much water coming down the Colorado river that is available to be shared among the various states it runs through; finally ending in a trickle as the once mighty Colorado river crosses into Mexico near Yuma AZ….

    I have witnessed this first hand as I used to chaperone 4H Youth groups down the Colorado from Blyth to Imperial years ago on rafts we built in a Lakeside Ca 4H club.

    Since then the Arizona Project, a canal that stretches from the Western border of Arizona near Parker and stretches all the way to Tucson, extracts a court decreed amount of water for irrigation and toilet flushing along its course thru this harsh landscape some four hundred miles… further restricting the share of water that eventually ends up in the gulf of California and the sea of Cortez.

    I have been driving through the Imperial Valley for probably fifty years and at one time the fields on both sides of old highway 80 and later Interstate 8 for at least 40 miles from Seely to Holtville were seas of green: Alfalfa, lettuce, sugar beets and signs announcing the pride of Holtville Ca; “The carrot capital of the world’’ was even on billboards…

    Over the past two or three years on my semiannual trips I have noticed something strange happening out in the Imperial Valley…Mile after mile of heretofore green fields sit fallow as dust devils move the soil around… There are still green fields but they are becoming more end more scarce.

    I was always fascinated by the little airport just east of route 111 alongside the highway that always had 4 or 5 crop dusting planes loading up for runs across the fields…
    Sometimes we were entertained by their flying acrobatics as they flew low over the fields and dodged electric lines and treated the freeway as a speed bump….. Today only one crop dusting plane that looked like it has seen better days remained at the little airport…

    I took note of this stark difference as I drove home from Yuma today and had a few miles to try and make sense of what I was seeing… and wondering:…

    ”Who is going to feed us when all the farms are gone ?”

    It finally dawned on me as I tried to explain to my wife why we were seeing the demise of farming North of the border…

    The farmers had sold their water rights to the Land Developers of Southern Kalifornia and the Developers had declared”….

    “Let Them Eat Dust.”