Blogging Bayport Alameda

October 30, 2014

All the rest

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:00 am

So the rest of the endorsements/what I already voted for, I didn’t include everything, just the ones I felt strongly about.

Measure I (Alameda school bond):  Yes.

It’s not gotten a whole lot of attention, but infrastructure issues at most Alameda school is definitely an issue.  Not necessarily the school my kids attend, but every other school in Alameda is in dire need of some money to bring the schools up the the 20th century not just the 21st century.  We expect huge things from our children in the future, we should be willing to give a little to make their learning experience not suck balls.  Vote yes on Measure I.

Did everyone check out the video, interestingly enough the Mayor of Alameda, Marie Gilmore, is featured advocating for people to support local schools.  A sitting School Board member running for Mayor is not.  Go figure.


October 29, 2014

Marie Gilmore, Jim Oddie, Mike McMahon

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

I just realized that I haven’t yet released my election recommendations because, well, everyone else is doing it and I’ve done it year after year, why break with precedence.

If you haven’t yet guessed, for Mayor I have already voted for Marie Gilmore.   I say “already voted” because I like the whole absentee ballot thing because it’s really quite simple to knock it out in my spare time.

It’s fluffy but is pretty well done for a local election:

Why am I voting for Marie Gilmore?


October 28, 2014

There are worse things I can do

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

The other day I was watching the Daily Show and Jon Stewart had, as his guest, the author of a book about when tabloids finally took over coverage of politics in journalism: Matt Bai.   At the end of the interview, Matt Bai wrapped up the interview with this quote:

I think we drum good people out of politics who are defined by the single worst thing they’ve ever done as opposed to the context of their public life.  And I think we make it much much easier for people who have no business holding office to enter the process because when you’re not talking about ideas and world views and agenda, when you’re talking about character and personality it makes it very easy for someone to float through the process without ever having to explain themselves or demonstrate what they know.

I thought a lot about this in context of Alameda elections in general, and not just this one, even though the character and personality seem to be one of the few reasons people have proffered to vote for Trish Spencer (she’s friendly, she talks to people, she listens).   It’s not as though Alameda lacks in talented, dedicated, and smart people.  I just think that most people don’t want to be, as stated by Matt Bai, “defined by the single worst thing they’ve ever done.”


October 27, 2014

And the endorsements keeping rolling in…

Filed under: Alameda, City Council, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

Generally I do a huge roundup of all the article about candidates and whatnot and throw it up on my roundup page.  But I’m feeling lazy right now, just an overall sense of “meh” about this election in general, however I did get around to updating the endorsements that have begun to roll in for the candidates.   There are not a whole lot of surprises so far, the all Democratic affiliated clubs went for Marie Gilmore for Mayor and Stewart Chen and Jim Oddie for City Council.  The Sierra Club opted to only elect to endorse Frank Matarrese.  And the Green Party for Alameda County, which has the strangest endorsement procedure, went for Trish Spencer for Mayor and Frank Matarrese for City Council.

The Alameda Journal/Oakland Tribune went for Marie Gilmore for Mayor and Jim Oddie and Frank Matarrese for City Council. But I think the only endorsement that I was actually surprised at was the one from the East Bay Express.


October 24, 2014

There was something so special about that place

Filed under: Alameda, Business, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:04 am

Sometimes Facebook has the best stuff.  On my newsfeed yesterday, someone shared a photo snapped at Alameda Wine Company.  Now, I have to say that the husband and I used to go to Alameda Wine Co. and whenever we were lucky enough to have someone watch the kidlings it used to be a stop during our infrequent date nights because the husband really liked the place.  I don’t drink — I think I’ve mentioned this before — but the non-alcoholic offerings were always lovely.

Fast forward and about a year and a half ago someone posted on Yelp a really horrible tale about an interaction she had with the owner of the Alameda Wine Co.   I’m pretty sure I didn’t actually write about the incident as a separate blog post, but I think I did tweet about it.  I can’t find my tweet now, but it probably came up on the feed in the corner.  Someone else recounted the story in my comments section here which was a bit of a detour from the original topic, but seems to happen a lot with you folks.


October 20, 2014

Socrates asks whose bias do y’all seek

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:00 am


So, before I left for Vietnam at the end of September I received a campaign mailer that was, ostensibly, anti-Mike McMahon and anti-school bond.   The mailer had no identifying information of who sent the mailer itself.  Given that this community tends to lose its shit over political phone polls and likes to call even the most basic  phone poll a “push poll” if it has anything remotely negative in it, I’m shocked that in the weeks that I was gone that this anonymous mailer hasn’t received more traction.

The only identification on the mailer itself is the permit number for the bulk mailing company which, I assume, belongs to the company that printed the flyers.

Why is this a big deal?  Well, according to FPPC rules there must be a disclosure of who paid for the mailer if it went out to 200 people.   From the FPPC:


October 17, 2014

Like Mike

Filed under: Alameda Landing, Election, School — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

I dunno if it’s just me, or if it’s this election, or the fact that I’ve been away for the past few weeks, but I’m feeling super uninspired by this election.  Maybe because the candidates for City Council are just so meh.  The only thing that leaves me with a cold dread is the possibility that Trish Spencer could be our next Mayor.   On the bright side though, she has been on her very best behavior at the School Board meetings, I imagine that after the election if she is unsuccessful in her bid for the Mayor’s seat she’ll revert to the old Trish Spencer that we all have come to know.   Interestingly enough at the last School Board meeting she voted “yes” to the designs for the Encinal pool remodel but yet voted no again and again to the mechanism that actually would pay for the remodels.  In fact, she touts her opposition to the complicated land exchange between the City and the School District as a reason why people should vote for her.   That is where the money comes from the pay for the renovations.   But typically Trish Spencer, vote for the easy stuff to say you “supported” something, but then not for the means to pay for it.  Which is so like a “fiscal conservative,” eh?

But anyway, I’ve decided against writing out profiles for the School Board candidates.  Call it apathy, whatever.   Solana Henneberry will likely win because 1) female,  2) education background, and 3) support of the unions.   Gary Lym has hedged his support for the bond measure which tells me that he is Trish Spencer redux.

Every time Mike McMahon runs I always get a bit nervous for him.   Why?   Because he’s not the warmest or fuzziest of Board Members.  In fact sometimes he can come off as downright abrasive.  But ever since the departure of Ron Mooney from the School Board, Mike McMahon is the only one, the ONLY one, that really truly understands all the nuances of public school funding.   To lose that sort of expertise simply because he rubs some people the wrong way would be a tragedy for the School District.


October 9, 2014

City Council candidates side by side

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

Just a quick side by side comparison of the three Alamedans vying to be your next City Councilmember:

Stewart Chen Frank Matarrese Jim Oddie
Current office held City Council None None
Education (Undergraduate) Northwest Missouri State University, University of California, Berkeley Indiana University
Education (Graduate) Palmer College of Chiropractic n/a Loyola University in Chicago (MBA)
University of San Francisco (JD)
Relevant City
volunteer experience
Current City Council Member
Former Hospital Board member
Former Social Services and Human Relations Board member
Former City Council member
Former Economic Development Commission member
Steering Committee for Main Library Bond
Former Chair of Open Government Commission
Former head of Alameda City Democratic Club
Correctly identified top 3
Asian ethnic groups in Alameda?
The answer is Chinese (14.3%),
Filipino (7.2%) and Vietnamese (3.5%)
Yes No Yes

October 8, 2014

City Council candidate profile 3 of 3: Jim Oddie

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

Jim Oddie has never held elected office previously and currently serves as the District Director for Assemblymember Rob Bonta. His campaign website is located here. All my posts referencing Jim Oddie are located here.

Jim Oddie is the candidate that everyone expects to do well, clean cut guy, well-educated, well-spoken, but has been unsuccessful at getting appointed to the key boards and commissions that generally provide visibility to precede a City Council run.

Overall, I may have to hold my nose and vote for Jim Oddie because he really is the least bad of three bad choices for City Council, but I still am pretty annoyed with him over the heavy lifting he did to secure the Alameda County Democratic endorsement for Trish Spencer two years ago.  Anyway not much info on him.  He probably puts out the consistently best answers for the questionnaires which isn’t saying much because I doubt that all the questionnaires actually get read.  His goal is to put out enough positive information about him as possible to get over the lack of name recognition.


October 7, 2014

City Council candidate profile 2 of 3: Frank Matarrese

Filed under: Alameda, Election — Tags: — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

Frank Matarrese is a former City Council member, he ran unsuccessfully for Mayor after his last term in office. His campaign website is located here and he has probably the worst SEO of all the campaign websites out there. All my posts referencing Frank Matarrese are located here.

Frank Matarrese was a strong supporter of former Interim City Manager Ann Marie Gallant (currently still locked in litigation with the City).   His biggest triumph (arguably) on the City Council was his strong support of the Alameda Theatre and Cineplex project.   To see how the tables have reversed, it’s interesting to see all the people who could find nothing but fault in Frank Matarrese during that time fully support him after his about face on development in general post Measure B.

Frank Matarrese has been prepping for this come back for some time now by peppering the local publications with letters to the editor for the past two years or so demanding things that already exist particularly when it comes to the development at Alameda Point.   I had thought for sure that he would try his hand at a run against Marie Gilmore, but I guess he saw Tony Daysog’s low-budget success and decided this would be a better shot.

Also, Frank Matarrese’s convenient lapse in memory that he sat on the City Council that approved the Alameda Landing project is disappointing as he decries the effort as though the idea was birthed sometime that did not include his term in office.  He was also very cozy with the Alameda Landing developer, Catellus, picking Catellus during the great Alameda Point Master Developer beauty contest.  He voted straight out for Catellus (again the developer of Alameda Landing which he is now poo poohing) as the Master Developer for Alameda Point in 2007 and voted for the joint Lennar/Catellus partnership that eventually fell through because neither developer could get it to work.


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