Opinion

Pass the DREAM Act, now

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by Eric Mar and Eric Quezada

news@sfbg.com

OPINION Imagine for a moment that you are 14 years old. Your parents, stuck in perpetual poverty and unemployment (or perhaps worse), move your family to a foreign country to begin a new life.

You work hard, struggle to fit in, study constantly, and fill your spare time with school activities. Maybe you even work a little on the side to chip in. You are a parent's dream, and a model of young citizenship.Read more »

WikiLeaks: demystifying diplomacy

With the nation's ongoing war efforts at full throttle, the contradictions between public rationales and hidden goals cannot stand the light of day

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OPINION Compared to the kind of secret cables that WikiLeaks just shared with the world, everyday public statements from government officials are exercises in make-believe.

In a democracy, people have a right to know what their government is actually doing. In a pseudo-democracy, a bunch of fairy tales from high places will do the trick.

Diplomatic facades routinely masquerade as realities. But sometimes the mask slips — for all the world to see — and that's what just happened with the humongous leak of State Department cables.Read more »

The perils of unaccountable power

The Redevelopment and Treasure Island commissions wield the power of multimillion dollar contracts and the ability to destroy a community near you

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By Saul Bloom

OPINION San Francisco has two redevelopment commissions that together have broad, sweeping authority over land use and development in the city. The Redevelopment Agency Commission and the Treasure Island Development Authority (TIDA) have more power in some respects than the Board of Supervisors — people you actually vote for.Read more »

The attack on Latinos

As long as the nation lacks comprehensive immigration reform, laws similar to Arizona's SB1070 will continue to be introduced across the country.

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OPINION The San Francisco-based Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments on Monday for United States v. State of Arizona. Latinos in California were watching closely.Read more »

The. Rent. Is. Too. Damn. High!

A record breaking conservative private donor puts the onus on progressives to show up on November 2nd

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Prop. B will save healthcare

Even with contributions required by Prop. B, city employees will receive a benefit package that is unparalleled in the private sector

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By Jeff Adachi and Jim Illig

Editors note: Last week we ran an op-ed by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano opposing Proposition B. Public Defender Jeff Adachi asked for space to respond. His position follows.Read more »

Prop. B is bad medicine

You wouldn't know Prop. B has anything to do with children's health care — because proponents don't want you to know the true costs
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OPINION Proposition B on the November ballot would eviscerate health care for tens of thousands of public workers and their families. It would double the cost of children's health care for more than 30,000 public employees including teachers, nurses, firefighters, custodians, and gardeners — regardless of their ability to pay. Read more »

The battle against desalination in the bay

Measure T allows MMWD to study desalination, but it can't start making concrete plans without a vote

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OPINION In July 2010, in one fell swoop, the Marin Municipal Water District's board of directors ambushed an initiative that would force a public vote on an expensive an environmentally destructive desalination plant on the edge of the bay.

In August 2009, the board unanimously voted to approve an environmental study to pave the way for the desalination plant, which would suck up bay water, filter out the salt, and dump the briny extract back into the bay.Read more »

The case for SEIU at Kaiser

What's going on right now with this union election is a shame

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Editors note: In last week's issue, we ran an op-ed piece by two hospital workers who are members of Service Employees International Union and want to change their affiliation to the new National Union of Healthcare Workers. SEIU asked for the right to respond, so we're presenting the arguments of an SEIU worker who opposes the change.

OPINION I'm a licensed vocational nurse (LVN) at Kaiser Permanente Oakland, where I've worked for 26 years. As an LVN and a union shop steward, I have two passions: patients and workers.Read more »

SEIU and the new McCarthyism

The demise of our once great union has implications far beyond our locals in California

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OPINION More than 43,000 California health care employees are currently involved in the largest union election in private industry since the 1940s, a contentious campaign that pits officials of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) against the National Union of Health Care Workers (NUHW). The outcome of the election may well determine the future of the labor movement for years to come.Read more »