Thumbnail image for Dear Santa: Here’s a Dozen Bad Boys and Girls from the Past Year in San Diego

Dear Santa: Here’s a Dozen Bad Boys and Girls from the Past Year in San Diego

by Doug Porter 12.23.2014 Columns

By Doug Porter

We could have generated at huge list. It’d probably look more like a phone book (remember those?), so the elves decided to limit this list to individuals who’s graced the pages of the San Diego Free Press over the past year.

And then we had to pare it down to a dozen. So many bad boys & girls, so little time…

Several individuals were selected as representatives of organizations that have done bad deeds locally in the past year. Others will need no introduction. They all deserve coal and sticks as our version of the jolly man (he wears a red suit for a reason) makes his rounds.

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Thumbnail image for Country Club America and the Ghost of Ayn Rand

Country Club America and the Ghost of Ayn Rand

by John Lawrence 12.23.2014 Culture

By John Lawrence

I was startled into wakefulness by the ghost of Ayn Rand, she the author of the Virtue of Selfishness and sundry other solipsistic tomes.

Unlike Scrooge, she is not the least bit repentent. She told me of her new concept of Country Club America. Not everyone deserves to be a member. It’s sort of a metaphysical walled community in which some people get to join; others are left out. Only the Best, the Brightest and the Most Beautiful can be members.

The rest – the homeless, the hoi polloi, the common people, vagabonds, hippies, the proletariat, rabble and riffraff cannot be members.

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Thumbnail image for Holiday Noir

Holiday Noir

by Bob Dorn 12.16.2014 Editor's Picks

By Bob Dorn

I woke up early Bloody Wednesday. I could hear the alarm on my Sig Sauer Smartshot pleading for attention. It’s automatic loader had failed and the diagnostics were blinking error 1037, error 1037, error 1037…

Of all days, Bloody Wednesday, Christmas Eve, my companion gun’s auto-feed goes manual. I’m going to lose precious seconds loading and reloading manually at the mall.

I’ll have no advantage over the last-minute shoppers who’d put off shopping until the last minute for no good reason.

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Thumbnail image for Fear of a Brown Planet: Watch This Stand-Up Comedian Explain ‘Reverse Racism’

Fear of a Brown Planet: Watch This Stand-Up Comedian Explain ‘Reverse Racism’

by Source 06.04.2014 Activism

Bullying, police brutality, and everyday insensitivities are regularly lampooned with Australians Aamer Rahman and Nazeem Hussain’s weapon of choice: comedy.

By / Yes!

In their stand-up comedy show, “Fear of a Brown Planet,” Australians Aamer Rahman and Nazeem Hussain challenge racism by making it the subject of humor. The collaborative show features stories about what the comedians and other people of color face on a regular basis.

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Thumbnail image for Drone APP Converts Leafblowers to Hair Dryers!!!

Drone APP Converts Leafblowers to Hair Dryers!!!

by Bob Dorn 04.20.2014 Business

By Bob Dorn

I’m from the stone age. I don’t carry a smart phone because I’m not smart enough. I think an app has something to do with Apple, like maybe it’s an abbreviation. It took me a number of years before I found out that Silicon Valley wasn’t a reference to that place between two huge phony boobs, where the pearl necklace settles.

My feeling about technology – just a feeling, now, or an opinion, if you prefer – is that it might be self cancelling, like a chia pet, or, say, network television, where on air people laugh at stuff that isn’t funny (and for a while longer might get paid for it). For all but fanatics, cars are done, too. …

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Thumbnail image for Can Chris Christie Have It All?

Can Chris Christie Have It All?

by Anna Daniels 04.01.2014 Culture

Does the 51 year old husband, father of four, lawyer and current Governor of New Jersey have what it takes to be President, too?

By Anna Daniels

“Will he or won’t he?” was on every pundit’s mind when New Jersey Governor Chris Christie arrived in Las Vegas to address the Republican Jewish Coalition. Anonymous sources say that the real reason for the visit was to receive the blessing from billionaire Sheldon Adelson for a 2016 presidential run, with the attendant promise of Adelson’s substantial financial backing. Christie coyly avoided directly answering a question about the purported meeting when asked at his Friday March 21 press conference.

Christie has a great deal riding on this visit to Las Vegas. He has clearly distanced himself from his two hour press conference in December 2013 when the Bridgegate Scandal genie could no longer be stuffed back into the bottle. During that press conference he seemed chastened, confused, vulnerable and according to an unnamed staffer, he looked… old. At one point he choked up, seemingly at the point of tears. His approval ratings plummeted, with some left wondering whether his inability to control his emotions led to questions about his leadership capabilities under stress.

The Republican Jewish Conference attendees seemed palpably relieved that the old Christie was back.

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Thumbnail image for A Whole New Ball Game: The Chargers MUST Draft Sam

A Whole New Ball Game: The Chargers MUST Draft Sam

by Bob Dorn 02.18.2014 Satire

By Tony Krvasse / UT-Norts Spews Columnist

Call me an old jock, if you want, but there’s no room in the NFL for homophobia. I’ve known lots of lineman who played around in the showers. After all, what are bare asses and wet towels for? Snap!

If you get that, then you’ll get this: the Chargers have got to draft Michael Sam.

Just in case you’ve been blacked out for the last few weeks I should let you know now that Michael Sam is the first major college top draft pick who’s declared himself open to man love. AND, he happens to be a great pass rusher, something the Chargers just can’t seem to do more than a few times a season.

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Thumbnail image for Santa Claus Comes to Friars Road

Santa Claus Comes to Friars Road

by Source 12.20.2013 Culture

“First of all, Mr. Claus, I object to your use of the term “good,” as being vague and ambiguous. “

By Matt Valenti

When traffic in the right lane of Route 163 South slows to a crawl for two miles between the 805 merge and Friars Road, it must be Christmastime in San Diego.

I found myself suffering through this traffic last weekend for my daughters’ obligatory annual photo op with Santa Claus at Fashion Valley Mall.

I expected the traffic, of course, and expected it would take me at least an hour of circling through the parking lot looking for a spot, after dropping my wife and girls off outside of Nordstrom’s.

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Thumbnail image for Readers Write: An Impassioned Plea for ‘Proposition F’

Readers Write: An Impassioned Plea for ‘Proposition F’

by Source 11.18.2013 Politics

By Matt Valenti 

What do school bathrooms have to do with San Diego’s mayoral candidates?

Well, some of the same people who brought us Proposition 8 are at it again, having gathered enough signatures to place an initiative on the 2014 ballot that would repeal California’s transgender students’ rights bill. That law is to take effect in January and will provide transgender students with equal access to school programs and facilities.

But if there’s to be a law meant to prevent people from passing themselves off as something they’re not, perhaps it should be a law to prevent conservative Republicans from passing themselves off as progressives. This is a phenomenon that San Diego has seen a lot of lately.

What we need is a local ballot initiative we could call “Proposition F,” after the two mayoral candidates who are the worst offenders: Nathan Fletcher and Kevin Faulconer.

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Thumbnail image for Let’s Ban Erections

Let’s Ban Erections

by Judi Curry 11.08.2013 Gender

A response to Senator Lindsey Graham’s latest abortion proposal

By Judi Curry

I am tired of men – and stupid women – telling me what I can do – or not do – with my body. In the readings I have done I have never come across anything telling me that the legislature – or the Supreme Court for that matter – were appointed GOD (s) and until they can prove to me that they are the Superior Being, it is time that we women exert our own power to ban the very cause of fetuses – namely the ERECTION.

This is what I propose: Every time a man has an erection not for the purpose of conceiving a child, that penis be cut off. (The conception of a child must be agreed to by the female partner.) The removal must be done by a female mid-wife, female nurse practitioner, or the female receptionist at the front desk. If none of these are available, then it is permissible for the woman that caused the erection to remove it any way she sees fit. This does not have to be done in a licensed hospital; in fact, a back-street alley is preferable. I don’t think that a hanger would work to well, so maybe a dull knife that has not been sterilized would be the weapon of choice.

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Thumbnail image for Why Blackface Isn’t Funny and Other Halloween Tales

Why Blackface Isn’t Funny and Other Halloween Tales

by Doug Porter 10.31.2013 Activism

By Doug Porter

A couple of football coaches from San Diego’s Serra High School have been in the news this week after photographs of them wearing blackface as part of their “Jamaican Bobsled Team” halloween costumes surfaced.

San Diego Unified School District officials have acknowledged “inappropriate activities” and are investigating the incident, which seems to have involved a non-school related party.

To nobody’s surprise the UT-San Diego has a letter to the editor today decrying the ‘political correctness’ of the situation.  Reader Jack Cohen opines, “The absolutely priggish administrator who said that we cannot tolerate the slightest insensitivity should be exiled to the next universe.”

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Thumbnail image for Wordplay – Shardly Worthwhile

Wordplay – Shardly Worthwhile

by Bob Dorn 10.25.2013 Culture

By Bob Dorn

Every few months I stumble onto files tucked away in odd places recording wordplay I’ve recorded in the last few years. I started doing it when a name, or coined word or phrase seemed to define events well but wouldn’t work in the piece at hand, either because it didn’t quite fit the passage (and would have looked shoehorned in later), or because it was too light or mean and petty for the context, or because it was simply distracting.

Yeah, distracting. I don’t know who said this; it was a writer for sure: the first thing to cut from a piece is the best thing in it. Of course, that’s so that the rest doesn’t suffer the contrast. But can you afford to forget the debris?

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Thumbnail image for It’s MY Plastic Bag,  and I Do What It Wants Me To.

It’s MY Plastic Bag, and I Do What It Wants Me To.

by Bob Dorn 09.15.2013 Activism

By Bob Dorn

I love my plastic bag.

No one’s going to take it from me; not some foolish enviro nut-hazard with her meds in her pocketbook, or some Japanese squeeky clean wearing a mask in the subway, or a Filner Freak-o who spends his money on Mexican marijuana that probably already has some STD buried between its cracks, or Obama, the Holy, who solved Syria all by himself (ask the cruise missiles who solved Syria!!!).

No one’s taking my plastic bags.

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Thumbnail image for FICTION: My San Diego Nightmare – a Visit by the Ghost of Scandals Past

FICTION: My San Diego Nightmare – a Visit by the Ghost of Scandals Past

by Source 07.31.2013 Business

By Sherly U. Jehest

Not accustomed to nightmares – as I am usually a good sleeper – I had a horrible one last night and just have to share it with you – my San Diego nightmare.

I had gone to sleep at my usual time, falling into slumber some time between Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show with John Oliver and its first commercial – a truly deadly time for me. I was dreaming of rolling sheets of ocean waves, so pretty … when I noticed a pale figure emerge out of the surf and begin to walk towards me.

The figure got closer and I noticed it was a tall woman wearing long, thin robes. She approached me and got closer – when all of a sudden she was sitting at the foot of my bed.

“What the …” I started to say, partially sitting up, when she shushed me with a long bony finger to her pale lips, glancing over at my sleeping mate.

“Who are you?” I managed to squeak out.

“I’m the Ghost of Scandals Past,” she said softly. She looked sad.

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Thumbnail image for Upcoming Scandal Eggo Disruptions

Upcoming Scandal Eggo Disruptions

by Bob Dorn 07.25.2013 Culture

By Bob Dorn

Jan Goldsmith’s Wig His Secret Sex Lure

The wig of Jan Goldsmith, City Attorney, is seeded with male sex pheromones, according to three of his attorneys who cannot be named.

Each of them says that in separate meetings alone with the city attorney in his office they found Goldsmith irresistible after he began combing the hairpiece or ruffling it with his fingers.

“It is possible to infuse human hair with provocative pheromones,” said UCSD’s Dr. Andrew Lecithini, of the school’s chemistry department, “but it tends also to severely straighten the hair, causing it to lay down and stray, which may counteract the attractive function of the pheromones.”

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Thumbnail image for Readers Write: A Sneak Peek at GOP’s 2016 Platform

Readers Write: A Sneak Peek at GOP’s 2016 Platform

by Source 07.09.2013 Columns

By Tom Hunter

I have just received a first draft of the Republican Platform for 2016.

1. All women of child bearing age must report to their doctor weekly for a vaginal probe ultrasound. If the doctor is not on the list the probe must be held by an official of the Republican Party. Every sperm is sacred and condom prices will be increased to $10 per unit.

2. Key portions of the Old Testament must be memorized or you will not be eligible to vote.

3. Guns must be carried about the body fully loaded and ready for action, or on the nightstand in the evening.

4. People determined to be “having too much fun” will be sent away to be rehabilitated.

5. Those wishing to get off the grid by not working for corporate America will not be eligible for unemployment or food stamps. Those found helping these unfortunates will be severely disciplined.

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Thumbnail image for Bye Bye Bachmann: Reliving 10 of the Tea Party Darling’s Craziest Gaffes

Bye Bye Bachmann: Reliving 10 of the Tea Party Darling’s Craziest Gaffes

by Source 06.01.2013 Culture

By Janet Allon / Alternet

Minnesota far-right Republican Rep. Michelle Bachmann has declared she will not run for a fifth term in 2014, and is making the dubious claim that her decision has nothing to do with that ongoing ethics probe into her campaign fund-raising in the 2012 race, or her falling poll numbers. No, she is a newfound convert to term limits.


This is about as believable as some of the gaffes, misstatements, anti-science positions, conspiracy theories, not to mention wobbly grasp of both American history and world geography, she displayed on her ill-fated quest for the 2012 Republican nomination. She even managed to make Texas Governor Rick Perry look both sane and slightly enlightened.

Let’s relive some of the self-proclaimed Tea Party leaders more colorful, unforgettable gaffes, the first of which may be her assertion that she never made any gaffes.

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Thumbnail image for The Starting Line – Can You Say Congressman DeMaio? And Other Republican Wet Dreams

The Starting Line – Can You Say Congressman DeMaio? And Other Republican Wet Dreams

by Doug Porter 05.02.2013 Columns

By Doug Porter

I read the Daily Fishwrap(s) so you don’t have to… is the tag line for this daily column. Some days I think it might be more appropriate to say ‘because you wouldn’t want to’.

So hold on to your blood pressure cuffs because today, we’ll be exploring the land of the absurd as portrayed in various news outlets around the country…

Washington’s Roll Call reported yesterday on a GOP polling effort right here in San Diego County’s 52 Congressional District. It’s well known that incumbent Brian Bilbray’s defeat by Democrat Scott Peters was a bitter pill for Republicans to swallow.

And local GOP leaders have made it perfectly clear that they’ll be back in the game, mounting a serious effort to retake that seat in 2014.

The latest Republican polling effort involved testing voter reaction to ‘new generation Republican’ Carl DeMaio.

INSIDE: Sarah Palin, Ted Cruz, Mark Sanford, GOP Light Bulb Screwing, and the Plague of Student Bombers Who Dance Dirty

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Thumbnail image for Belly-whopping Off the Deep End

Belly-whopping Off the Deep End

by Norma Damashek 04.15.2013 Government

By Norma Damashek

I know, I know, we’re only human.  We all make mistakes.  Everyone’s been known to lie or cheat or steal (only for a good reason, of course).  At times we’re devious or lazy.  Sometimes greedy.  Vindictive, too. 

Given our shortcomings, I ask  you this: is it fair to demand higher standards from our elected officials than we might impose on regular folk like you and me?  Here’s my answer: it’s more than fair; it’s self-evident common sense to hold out for brain-power and high ethical standards from politically-inspired individuals who climb into the public arena and vie for the prize of holding the public welfare in the palm of their hands.  

You look for professional standards and expertise from a dentist, don’t you? from your trainer at the gym? the butcher at Vons?  Does it make sense to accept anything less from your elected politicians who have the power to shape, improve, or make a mess of your daily lives and surroundings?

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Thumbnail image for Five Stages of Republican Grief (A Tribute to the U-T’s Steve Breen)

Five Stages of Republican Grief (A Tribute to the U-T’s Steve Breen)

by Annie Lane 04.10.2013 Culture

By Annie Lane
Last week I came across a Steve Breen cartoon in the San Diego Union-Tribune entitled “Mapping Bob Filner’s Brain” (see left). I had quite the guffaw. I mean, if guffaws were redefined to be humorless, silent events that’s what it was.

I find it interesting that, given Breen’s skill and Pulitzer Prize history, the brain he chose to draw was so boorishly simple. Don’t worry, I get it — it’s intended to represent the supposedly simple mind of our union-sympathizing, anti-hotelier mayor.

But it doesn’t matter what multi-syllabic, mildly offensive adjectives Breen uses to describe Bob Filner because, at the end of the day, he’s still the elected mayor of San Diego. You know, the guy who, like most Democrats in the 2012 election, fairly won against his Republican counterpart.

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Thumbnail image for The Smell of Freedom in the Air: Guns in America

The Smell of Freedom in the Air: Guns in America

by Source 04.01.2013 Culture

by Jerry Farber / The Daily Kos

Let’s be honest. Haven’t you just about had it with this latest round of hand-wringing about guns? I mean, look, why don’t we just concede the point right up front? Yes, if you want the kind of government that runs your life, that comes into your home and tells you how sharp your kitchen knives can be, well then, sure, I suppose life can be made a little safer. But what about freedom? Isn’t that pretty much supposed to be the name of the game in this country.

And aren’t we all just sick and tired of hearing how America should try to be more like some other country—like this country or that country? Now it’s all about gun violence. People throw these ridiculous figures at you. Supposedly, in England, the death rate from guns is forty times less than it is here. (So in those London pubs they just have to come at each other with broken bottles, right?) Oh, and Japan. Yes, let’s be just like Japan. In Japan, nobody ever dies at all (except, of course, when a nuclear plant blows up in their face). So what is this all about? What are these Japan-lovers and these England-lovers trying to sell us? What are they after? I’ll tell you what they’re after. One more freedom down the drain.

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Thumbnail image for Manchester Buys Baseball’s Padres, Changes Name

Manchester Buys Baseball’s Padres, Changes Name

by Jim Miller 04.01.2013 Satire

After having purchased and transformed the San Diego Union Tribune into America’s greatest newspaper in the Finest City in the World’s Best Darn Country, Doug Manchester is at it again. This time he has set his sights on the nation’s pastime and is aiming to put it back on the map for good by bringing an even more super American brand of baseball to the place where happy happens.
Change of course, is not just what will be left in your pocket after the Socialist in Chief leaves the White House, it’s the order of the day at Manchester Park, home of the San Diego Robber Barons. Swap out the statue of Tony Gwyn for one of the Lord Manchester himself and toss the swinging friar down the memory hole and replace him with that plucky little Carl DeMaio who will rove the stands passing out complementary reports on the inefficiency of local government and the scourge of pubic sector unionism.

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Thumbnail image for Mayor Filner Joins Forces with New York City Mayor Bloomberg

Mayor Filner Joins Forces with New York City Mayor Bloomberg

by John Lawrence 04.01.2013 Satire

San Diego and New York City mayors take aim at sugary soft drinks

In a speech yesterday at the Balboa Park Club, Mayor Bob Filner outlined his plans for combating the consumption of large quantities of sugary, fizzy soft drinks. After mentioning all the negative effects from their consumption such as obesity and Type 2 Diabetes, Filner said, “You know we live in America’s Finest City, and we can’t have America’s biggest lard asses walking around in America’s Finest City. Something must be done. Mayor Bloomberg and I are on the same page regarding this issue. So what I’m proposing is this: today I’m declaring that the entire City of San Diego is a Sugary Soft Drink District (SSDD). This will be a counterpoise and eventually take the place of the Tourism Marketing District (TMD) which has created so much controversy lately.

“And in consideration of that tax money which the TMD wants me to turn over to the hoteliers around here, I’ve come to a decision. Instead of turning over that money, I will put it to good use funding the SSDD. These monies will kickstart this project. We will put up ads on billboards and run TV commercials pointing out the negative effects of consuming sugary soft drinks. So not only will San Diego be America’s Finest City, but under my administration San Diego will become America’s Healthiest City.”

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Thumbnail image for Health Department Shutting Down Taco Tuesdays Citywide

Health Department Shutting Down Taco Tuesdays Citywide

by Judi Curry 04.01.2013 Satire

In a bold move, it has come to my attention that the Health Department will be shutting down all restaurants in the San Diego area that cater to “Taco Tuesday” feasts. In investigating this phenomena that has taken over eating Mexican food on Tuesdays, there have been many complaints from other ethnic restaurants that their sales are lagging because they are not participants and they cannot afford to employ their staff on Tuesdays. Therefore, with only a one day notice, all “Taco Tuesday” establishments will need to close tomorrow and every Tuesday thereafter.

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Thumbnail image for La Jolla: Harbor Seals Vacate the Children’s Pool

La Jolla: Harbor Seals Vacate the Children’s Pool

by Source 04.01.2013 Satire

Unfortunately There’s a Much Larger Problem Now

by Steve Burns

La Jolla residents, long upset over the harbor seal rookery at the Children’s Pool, woke up last Friday wondering if nature had finally solved the “problem.” To their amazement, not a single harbor seal was to be found, neither on the beach of the Children’s Pool, nor on Seal Rock just a few yards from the shore line.

Could it be the controversy had resolved itself? Could the Children’s Pool finally be returned to its rightful owners; the people of La Jolla?

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