The Union runs front-page ad from climate change doubter

This blog will never run out of material! This weekend, The Union newspaper is running a front-page ad promoting a book titled “Polar Bears in the Hot Tub: Their Future and Ours” by Arthur Krugler. It informs us: “Predictions! True of False? Polar Bears could disappear in five years from 2008”! “Actually there are now 30,000 per census.”

“Polar Bears in the Hot Tub is an inquiry that asks different questions about global warming and the predicted hazards,” according to a summary at Google Books. “This book follows a different path of research to find answers to questions that no one is bothering to ask. Is climate change inevitable? Are we solving the wrong problem? Are polar bears languishing in warmer and warmer arctic waters? Maybe not.”

Considering that some of our most vocal local global warming doubters (AKA “those who reject mainstream climate science”) religiously subscribe to The Union, this might be a good match. Good luck with your book sales, sir!

Supreme Court blocks Louisiana abortion law

“The Supreme Court on Thursday blocked a Louisiana law that its opponents say could have left the state with only one doctor in a single clinic authorized to provide abortions,” as The New York Times is reporting>

“The vote was 5 to 4, with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. joining the court’s four-member liberal wing.

“The law, enacted in 2014, requires doctors performing abortions to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. In 2017, Judge John W. deGravelles of the Federal District Court in Baton Rouge struck down the law, saying that such doctors were often unable to obtain admitting privileges for reasons unrelated to their competence and that the law created an undue burden on women’s constitutional right to abortion.

“The Louisiana law, Judge deGravelles ruled, was essentially identical to one from Texas that the Supreme Court struck down in a 2016 decision, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. Justice Stephen G. Breyer, writing for the majority in the 2016 decision, said courts must consider whether the claimed benefits of laws putting restrictions on abortion outweigh the burdens they placed on the constitutional right to the procedure.”

The rest of the article is here.

A heartfelt proposal to the Merry Widows

We enjoy the Mardi Gras parade and appreciate the Merry Widows Society of Nevada City and all their contributions. I wrote about their efforts to raise scholarship money to assist single parents who are going to college.

Now this group has an ideal opportunity to help mend fences in our town.

The Union cartoonist RL Crabb describes the recent flap in his own words: “I recently got called out for sharing a meme on Facebook, not something I created, but something that struck me as humorous. It was a photo of a police officer struggling with how to describe a suspect who is a gender-fluid male who identifies as a female but considers her species to be a mountain panda.”

“The comments that followed were aimed at the species aspect, and a few that wondered how such gender cases would be handled in the real world. There wasn’t anything I would call trans-bashing.

“But Adela Wilcox did take offense, even though I tried in my feeble mansplaining way that my profession was contingent on pointing out the absurdity of the human condition, and that this meme seemed to fit the bill.”

Here’s a thought: The Merry Widows could invite our local LGBT groups to march with them in the Mardi Gras parade on February 17. It would be a wonderful show of unity and a real highlight of the festivities. I would be happy to make a generous donation to support that effort.

Watch Trump blow off our autograph-seeking Congressman LaMalfa at State of The Union address

This is “what a hoot” and “podunk” all wrapped up into one! Our esteemed Congressman Doug LaMalfa became the butt of a joke on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, as well as social media, for his juvenile behavior at President Trump’s State of The Union speech this week.

“When Trump showed up in the House and walked up the aisle, one lawmaker [LaMalfa] tried to get him to autograph his hat,” Fallon said in his monologue.

Then the comedian showed the video clip. “He’s got his Sharpie there,” Fallon said as the video rolled, showing a surprised Trump waive his finger toward LaMalfa and walk away. “Trump is like, ‘The only thing I’m stopping to sign are boobs.'” 

You can see this in the video at 1:30:

Another Boardman blooper: confuses hip fast-casual salad chain with Chinese takeout in Queens

Sweet Garden in Queens (credit: Zomato)
Sweetgreen, the “unicorn” startup, AKA an IPO candidate with a value of $1 billion (credit: Nation’s Restaurant News)

You can’t make this stuff up! In his near weekly blooper,  The Union’s weekly columnist George Boardman writes: “One of newest trends in the restaurant industry is the $15 lunch salad at upscale chains like Chop’t, Sweetgarden and Just Salad. This trend is so hot that Sweetgarden recently completed a $200 million round of funding that values the company at $1 billion.”

Sweetgarden? Huh? Does our crackerjack journalist-turned-PR flack and  “business reporter” mean “Sweetgreen” (not Sweetgarden)?

—An article in Forbes magazine, “Why $200 Million Will Make Sweetgreen The Next Big Thing In Delivery (And, Yes, A Unicorn),” is HERE.

“We want to go beyond a food company and become a platform,” Neman, Sweetgreen’s co-CEO, told Forbes in an exclusive interview after closing the $200 million round, which brings the company’s total equity raised to $365 million and values the chain at more than $1 billion.

—Or as Restaurant News reported: “Fidelity Investments has made a $200 million investment in Sweetgreen, bringing the fast-casual salad chain’s total equity raised over the past five years to $365 million, the company said Tuesday.  The Fidelity funding round values the 90-unit Los Angeles-based brand at more than $1 billion, the company said.”

I did, however, find a Chinese takeout joint in Queens called Sweet Garden (two words, not one). The menu is here.

You go George! Ringing in the New Year with another correction.

Washington Post airs its first Super Bowl ad

“The Washington Post debuted its first Super Bowl commercial — a message underscoring the importance of newsgathering and the dangers journalists can face — during Sunday’s game between the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams,” as the newspaper reported. “The 60-second spot, narrated by actor Tom Hanks, aired in the fourth quarter of the game, shortly before the two-minute warning.

“The commercial, produced in partnership with Mark Woollen and Associates, shows scenes from major news events from World War II through the present day. Hanks’s narration describes the role of journalists as eyewitnesses and gatherers of fact as well as the profession’s larger importance to society. The commercial ends with The Post’s logo and its slogan, ‘Democracy Dies in Darkness.’

“’The Super Bowl is a remarkable moment to recognize the courage and commitment of journalists around the world that is so essential to our democracy,’ said Fred Ryan, publisher and CEO of The Washington Post. ‘We decided to seize the opportunity to make this a milestone moment in our ongoing campaign.’”

The article is here. The ad is here:

Goff will extend Berkeley’s record for starting QBs in the Super Bowl

Jared Goff (Photo: Berkeley News)

“UC Berkeley’s quarterback connection to the Super Bowl began well before there was a Super Bowl,” according to Berkeley News, UC Berkeley’s main news and information engine.

“In the fall of 1960, Joe Kapp made a habit of haunting Craig Morton, a kid he’d heard about who didn’t live far away down the South Bay way.

“’He camped outside my house,’ Morton says now. ‘My mom would say, `He’s out there again,’ and I’d say, `Again? I’m not going out there.’”

“At the time Kapp had just finished playing football and basketball at Cal and Morton was in the middle of being named Northern California high school athlete of the year as a Campbell (San Jose) High quarterback and pitcher.

“’I recruited him to Cal, you bet I did,’ Kapp says. After shining as a quarterback for Cal, he was heading off to play in Canada, and Kapp wanted a replacement. He wanted Morton, and Morton went on to star for the Golden Bears. ‘I’d seen the film of what he could do, and I wanted him to go play where I’d played.’

“Kapp played for the better part of a decade in Canada before landing with the Vikings and taking Minnesota to Super Bowl IV in 1970. A year later, it was Morton at the reins for the Cowboys in Super Bowl V. He’d come back with Denver for Super Bowl XII.

“Since then, Vince Ferragamo, who spent 1972 and ’73 at Cal and two more years at Nebraska, and Aaron Rodgers (at Cal 2003 and ’04) have put “starting Super Bowl quarterback” on their resumes, Ferragamo in Super Bowl XIV and Rodgers in Super Bowl XLV.

“This Sunday, Jared Goff will become the fifth Golden Bear to start a Super Bowl, leading the L.A. Rams..

“Former Cal quarterback Craig Morton started two Super Bowls, one with the Cowboys and one with the Broncos (UC Berkeley photo by Cal Athletics)

“No other NCAA school has produced so many Super Bowl starting QBs.”

The rest of the article is here.