Headlines: Occupy — Damage Control in Oakland, Calls for General Strike; Ed Lee Leads Mayoral Fundraising, Support for Herrera on Marriage Issue
- Occupy Oakland: Officials shift into damage control (Oakland Tribune)
Oakland Mayor Jean Quan shifted into damage control Thursday, asking hospitalized protester Scott Olsen and other Occupy Oakland demonstrators to cooperate with police investigating Olsen’s head injury. Quan visited Olsen, a former Marine and Iraq War veteran, on Thursday morning at Highland Hospital. She shook his hand, and apologized for what happened to him. She also encouraged him and fellow demonstrators to speak with police, a hospital spokesman said. Olsen was knocked down — apparently by a tear-gas canister or other police projectile — Tuesday night as authorities tried to keep protesters away from Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, in front of Oakland City Hall.
- Occupy Oakland makes plans for citywide general strike (Oakland Tribune)
Occupy Oakland protesters debated Thursday evening the practical difficulties of organizing a citywide general strike with the aim of shutting down the city of Oakland on Nov. 2. Speakers urged teachers, students, union members and workers of all stripes to participate in whatever way they could, and said the entire world was watching Oakland. “Oakland is the vanguard and epicenter of the Occupy movement,” said Clarence Thomas, a member of the powerful International Longshoreman and Warehouse Union who urged the hundreds of assembled people to support the strike.
- Ed Lee leads in fundraising among mayoral hopefuls (SF Chronicle)
The campaign money keeps pouring in for Mayor Ed Lee, who has raised – and spent – more than $1.24 million in his effort to hang on to the job he was appointed to in January. According to campaign finance reports released Thursday, that’s nearly double the $623,000 that Supervisor David Chiu, the second-leading fundraiser, has taken in this year for his campaign for mayor.
- Rally lauds Herrera for gay support (SF Chronicle)
More than 100 people gathered Thursday in a Castro district plaza named after gay political icon Harvey Milk to commend City Attorney Dennis Herrera for his legal support of same-sex marriage. The rally came a day after The Chronicle ran a front-page story that raised questions about Herrera’s early commitment to defend then-Mayor Gavin Newsom’s decision in 2004 to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.
- Jerry Brown’s pension package faces skeptical Legislature (Sacramento Bee)
Even as Gov. Jerry Brown announced his plan Thursday to reduce pension benefits for public employees across the state, its prospects of passing intact appeared dim. California’s powerful labor interests objected to major parts of the plan, and the leaders of the Democratic-controlled Legislature – neither of whom attended Brown’s announcement – reacted warily.
- Obama administration OKs cuts to California doctors’ reimbursement (Sacramento Bee)
The Obama administration approved significant Medi-Cal cuts Thursday that health care providers and patient advocates warn will reduce access for California’s most vulnerable residents.
- BART talks on cell phone blackouts extended (SF Chronicle)
The fury and outrage that erupted after BART’s shutdown of subterranean cell phone service to stifle a political protest in August has simmered down to a reasoned, even thoughtful, First Amendment debate about when the transit agency should consider turning off wireless communications. BART’s Board of Directors decided Thursday to continue that discussion for at least two more weeks.
- Hewlett-Packard stock rises after decision to forgo PC spinoff (SJ Mercury News)
Investors reacted warmly Friday morning to Hewlett-Packard’s (HPQ) decision to not separate its core personal computer business from the rest of the company. HP stock rose 3.7 percent in morning trading in New York after Thursday’s announcement that it will hold on to its flagship PC division, news that arrived after the markets had closed. The Palo Alto tech giant’s new CEO, Meg Whitman, made the decision to avoid a path suggested by her predecessor, Léo Apotheker, who announced in August that the company would consider spinning off or even selling the $40 billion a year business.
- Security tight for San Jose Hells Angels’ funeral (SF Chronicle)
San Jose police will be out in force at a funeral this weekend for a member of the Hells Angels motorcycle club who was shot dead at the same cemetery two weeks earlier.
- New lawsuit alleges sex discrimination at Walmart (SF Chronicle)
Four months after the U.S. Supreme Court spurned a nationwide sex-discrimination suit against Walmart, female employees of the world’s largest retailer returned to court Thursday with claims of pay and promotional bias against 95,000 women in California and new evidence of sex-stereotyped comments by the company’s chief executive.
- Bay Area News Group announces it will retain East Bay mastheads (Oakland Tribune)
The San Mateo County Times and several other Bay Area newspapers will retain their nameplates, executives of the papers’ parent company announced Thursday, reversing an earlier plan. The executives also announced the chain will open two community media laboratories in Oakland as part of an initiative to deepen its newspapers’ ties with their local markets.