Letters • 10-17-2012 | Print |  E-mail

Calls Many Obama Supporters ‘Drones’


While reading last week’s letters, it was painfully clear to me that many Obama supporters are nothing more than drones, believing the Obama propaganda without checking the facts for themselves.

The dishonesty and misleading ads from the Dems are nothing less than appalling. Political ads in general are intended to spin, mislead and trick voters, and it is up to us voters to do some research.

It is no wonder they (the drones) think Romney was flip-flopping and lying, as they obviously have not listened to a thing he has been saying, but merely believing the liberal media.

During the debate Romney was true to his beliefs, he came across as the honest, caring business man he is. He did, however, for the first time get his point across to the American people without the liberal media giving it their spin.

As informed voters we should listen to both sides of the issues, take it with a grain of salt, add some healthy cynicism and come to our own conclusions.

Yes, I am voting for Romney, I don’t want the government to gamble my children’s future away on unprofitable green energy projects like Solyndra, $90-billion wasted?


Do some research; find out what Obama has been doing to our military, to our economy. I, for one,   can’t give him 4 more years to complete his destruction of our once great country. Russia and China are waiting for us to stumble so they can eat our lunch. Please join me, don’t let it happen, dump Obama!

What will you tell your grandchildren when they ask you to tell them how it was like, living in America when it was the strongest and best country in the world?

Thomas Dias, Castro Valley



Oakland Zoo Volunteer: ‘Measure A1 Will Allow Zoo

To Maintain its Superior Animal Care’



I have been a Docent for a 1-1⁄2 years, have a zoo membership, and am proud to support the Zoo and Measure A1.

As a volunteer, I have witnessed the enjoyment of all zoo visitors as well the educational programs it provides. To be clear, Measure A1 is a not about expanding the zoo. It is a $1 per month parcel tax that will allow the zoo to continue to maintain its superior animal care and extend educational programs throughout Alameda County.

This measure should not be confused with the project that was previously approved in 2011 by Oakland Parks & Recreation, Planning Commission and the Oakland City Council which included construction of a new, state-of-the-art veterinary hospital which is near completion.


These approval agencies and the Alameda County Superior Court judge all determined the zoo had met the requirements to proceed with a project that will benefit hundreds of thousands of zoo visitors.


The Zoo is proud that Rep. Barbara Lee, the Humane Society of the U.S., as well as local education and animal rights advocates support A1.  Other supporters are: (1) the East Bay Regional Park District, Alameda County School Superintendent Sheila Jordan, and School Superintendents in every city of the County due to the critically needed environmental education it provides children, and (2)  animal-care organizations, including the Ventana Wildlife Society, the Felidae Conservation Fund/Bay Area Puma Project, and leading veterinarians due to A1’s goal to provide humane animal care.

These supporters understand the intention behind A1 and how the funds will be used. Please join me and others in support of one of Oakland’s leading cultural, educational, and animal care organizations by voting Yes on Measure A1.

Ann Thomas, Castro Valley



Calls Measure A1 ‘Deceptive Ploy and

Inappropriate Use of Taxpayer Money’



I am writing to urge Alameda County residents to vote no on the Oakland Zoo’s Measure A1 parcel tax. Twenty five years is a long time to grant tax revenue control to a private board that is not accountable to the public.


The public was not given the opportunity to review or provide input to Measure A1 before it was put on the ballot. The public is certainly ill-served by Measure A1’s amendment clause; voters can only amend it to increase or extend it, whereas the Board of Supervisors can amend its stated purpose to fund zoo projects.


If measure A1 passes, the zoo will use taxpayer money to develop Knowland Park open space and destroy native habitats. They’ll construct roads, fences, animal enclosures, gift shops, restaurants, executive offices, and overhead gondolas.


This may sound far-fetched, but it’s the zoo’s actual plan for an expansion into Knowland Park at the peak of its ridgeline. All of us want zoo animals to live in humane conditions, but shame on the zoo board for letting the zoo’s facilities deteriorate after making a half million in profits last year, spending a million on the A1 campaign this year, and hustling to break ground on a $77-million expansion up the hill.

Measure A1 is a deceptive ploy and an inappropriate use of taxpayer money, especially now when fire and police departments are being drastically downsized and schools and libraries are being closed for lack of funds.

Mimi Pulich, Berkeley



School Board Challenger Says She

Would Raise Board’s Expectations


In response to “A Question to School Board Challengers” (from Frank Mellon, Letters, Oct. 3), I want to first thank you, Frank, for taking the time to attend the Candidates Forum at the CV Library on Sept. 26. I also applaud your interest in becoming more informed prior to voting on Nov. 6.

To answer your question, there are several things I would do that differ from the current school board. First, I would encourage the board to raise expectations and begin to compare Castro Valley to districts like San Ramon, Dublin, and Pleasanton.

The current school board is satisfied with the academic achievement of CV schools stating that our schools are the best in the area, yet at our high school only 4 out of 10 students are achieving proficiency in math. My concern is for the other 60% of students who are not succeeding in math. How are we currently addressing this?

Next, I would work to create more open lines of communication with our community, our parents, and our teachers; encouraging a culture  of collaborative problem-solving that will be critical in changing our schools so they truly reflect the 21st century skills needed in college and careers.

A group of focused, interested individuals from slightly different perspectives (classroom, school, district, home, community) can develop a more balanced plan that considers everyone’s voice. Weighing in takes time, but creates trust and buy-in.

Finally, I would work to establish a culture that is more transparent in an effort to regain the trust and confidence of our teachers and community. Only one of the current incumbents is endorsed by Castro Valley teachers, along with Banther and Pippitt. We should be asking ourselves why this is so and seek answers from our local teachers.

Mary Pippitt, Castro Valley



Supports Barbieri for School Board:

‘There is None Finer’


For several years, our school district and the level of student achievements continue to be the envy of the vast majority of our surrounding communities. Many agree this is due to the spirit of our students, teachers and staff, and community involvement. Further, even in difficult economic times, we also have seen substantial and needed infrastructure improvements.

At the helm of all of this are the elected members of our school board. They make the tough decisions and take the seldom deserved heat from the ever present critics who are consumed with their pursuit of finding fault, whether real or imagined.


School board member John Barbieri is up for reelection for his fifth term. Our teachers association has, for the first time, endorsed candidates. John is the only incumbent to be endorsed. Though well deserved, that is an unusual and high honor.


John is Mr. CV School Board, constantly considering options and searching for a better way to deal with issues at hand. John has extensive financial background and five children who went through our school district, and he holds lifetime teaching credentials. All of this and his solid community service make him uniquely qualified for reelection.

John is an honorably-discharged U.S. Marine, solid as a rock...he is for real. John has served you and me and our country well and faithfully. There is none finer. He wants all of us to confirm his reelection to allow him to continue his service.

We all owe him not less than that opportunity. Vote for John Joseph Barbieri for School Board.

William Burton, Castro Valley



Urges Voters to Refrain from Voting

For Stark and Hayashi


With a month to go until the general election, I wanted to inform voters on two candidates we should not re-elect: Pete Stark & Mary Hayashi.

Yes, the same Mary Hayashi who pled no contest to shoplifting over $2,400 worth of merchandise from Neiman Marcus.

She didn’t have the courage to speak with us so we could hear her side of the story. A staffer provided a weak explanation that included distractions from using multiple cell phones, “accidentally” placing clothing in her bag and suffering from a brain tumor.


So Mary, which one is it? Have you any other excuses? We’d like to know before we elect you to Nadia Lockyer’s vacant seat. We all know how well she worked out.

Also, Mrs. Hayashi has been accused of renting her Castro Valley home to one of her former legislative aides. Surprisingly, he was given a $7,500 raise weeks prior to renting with the Hayashi’s. Hmm....sounds like he received a nice pay raise to afford the rent.


Now on to Pete Stark. For years, he’s claimed his home in Maryland as his primary residence. Shockingly, he does this so he saves money and lowers his property taxes. However, under Maryland law you must register to vote there to receive this benefit.

Guess what? He registers to vote in California but uses his in-laws address in San Lorenzo as his place of residence. Sure sounds unethical to me! Mr. Stark has not lived in California for years yet claims to be “our Congressman.”

On Nov. 6, do the right thing and don’t cast a vote for these two individuals. They don’t have our community’s best interest in mind. Don’t just vote because you recognize a name. It’s time we elected some new blood to represent us and not someone who will continue to work the system and use it to their benefit.

Kevin J. Kelly, Castro Valley



Accuses Democrat Swalwell of Being A Republican in Disguise



Is Eric Swalwell a Real Democrat? Or is he really a Republican disguised as a Democrat in order to gain votes?


His campaign literature in the June primary said “we need government and business on the same page,” which is Republican-speak for “government needs to let business do whatever business wants to do.”


But that’s exactly what got us into this mess – deregulating industry after industry, decreasing taxes on corporations and the super-rich, while increasing taxes on the working poor and the middle class, and pretending that trickle-down economics will get us out of this Great Republican Recession.

Trickle-down economics didn’t work under Reagan, it didn’t work under Bush, and it won’t work now.


Professional economists know that in a deep recession government needs to be creating jobs when the private sector is not. If Eric would get off of his juvenile ego trip, he could learn from his grandfather about the WPA and CCC, which created jobs and helped pull us out of the Great Depression.

We need someone to represent us in Congress who has enough life experience to understand the way things really work, not some rookie. Eric needs to go back to school and study American History, instead of just repeating Reagan’s and Bush’s and Romney’s fiction.

Frank Burton, Castro Valley



Teacher Applauds Castro Valley Pride

For Donation of Classroom Printer


My name is Alex McMurray. I’m a teacher at Proctor Elementary school in Castro Valley. I have 32 students split nearly down the middle (17 boys, 15 girls). They are enthusiastic learners who enjoy creative approaches to instruction, such as implementing technology and working in a variety of ways: individually, small groups, and with partners.

My students needed a color printer to help publish their writing projects and other class activities, so we began a “Donors Choose” online event to raise money for the printer and color ink supplies.


Our request was spotted by Billy Bradford of Castro Valley Pride and they are not only going to cover the entire cost of the printer, but they already purchased it and had it shipped directly to the school.

I appreciate what Castro Valley Pride is doing to help out our struggling schools and ensure that my students have the technology they need. Thank you Castro Valley Pride!

Alex McMurray, Castro Valley



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