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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Author Archive: Rich Rifkin

More tax money? Answer the question

Make no mistake, Davis is in dire shape financially. Without a tax increase in 2014, the general fund reserve will run out of money early next year. Come July 1, the account should have about $3.7 million left in reserve. That’s $2.5 million less than it had on July 1, 2013. The city projects the […]

Bad judgment used on parking

When I was a senior at Davis High School, I was the president of the debate team. Being a loud mouth with a lot of opinions, it was a good fit for me. Battling against kids from high schools all over the Sacramento region, my best event was one called impromptu speaking. In it, shortly […]

College sports: a counterfeit amateurism

On your TV set Thursday morning, March Madness, also known as the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, begins in earnest. Yes, it’s true round one opened with 68 teams on Tuesday. But four play-in games will have whittled the tournament down to the standard 64 by tonight. One of those fortunate schools will be awarded the […]

Why trust them with more money?

Before you vote, yes or no, on the City Council’s proposal to increase the sales tax in Davis another half-cent — from 8 percent to 8.5 percent — you should know where your money is going. The city figures the larger levy will generate $3.61 million per year. Most of that will go to higher […]

Carbon dioxide is killing our oceans

“The geological record suggests that the current acidification is potentially unparalleled in at least the last 300 million years of Earth history and raises the possibility that we are entering an unknown territory of marine ecosystem change.” — Jelle Bijma, research scientist, October 2013 As if there were not already enough to worry about … […]

Why we need a local gas tax

It was noon, Sunday, 10 days ago. I was bicycling south on Sycamore Lane, approaching the intersection at Covell Boulevard. The light was green. Thirty yards or so ahead was a boy, about 8, alone, on his bike. The child was riding fine, not going too fast, when he hit a sharp pothole in the […]

Why there is so much anti-Israel bias

When I was researching my last column — regarding the boycott of Israeli scholars by the American Studies Association — one question I wanted to get at was the anti-Israel bias of the far left, here and abroad. I was not probing the issue of anti-Semitism in the Muslim world. My interest was knowing why leftists, […]

All quiet on the North Korean front?

I had to go to college to realize not all professors are smart. Yet I don’t think any UC teacher I had was silly enough to vote in favor of the American Studies Association’s ostracism of Israeli scholars under the pretense that an “academic boycott promotes dialogue and collaboration.” Alas, that is one reason why […]

January 08, 2014 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

The big things are most important

If you listen to most veteran sports broadcasters, you often will hear them say, “It’s the little things that win you ball games.” But if you have any common sense, you know that is malarkey. Teams that win, in all sports, are those that do the big things right. That’s why they are the big […]

December 26, 2013 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

America, we have a weight problem

So what if you need to lose a few pounds? If you’re overweight but your metabolic readings are normal, you might think there’s no compelling health reason to get in shape. But new research, published last week in the Annals of Internal Medicine, suggests you need to think again. There is no such thing as […]

Give thanks for some luck

“There’s always the same amount of good luck and bad luck in the world. If one person doesn’t get the bad luck, somebody else will have to get it in their place.” — Tom Robbins, “Still Life with Woodpecker” There is no holiday better than Thanksgiving. No matter your race, religion or ethnic origin, it’s […]

Obamacare: We lack a better alternative

“If you like your private health insurance plan, you can keep your plan. Period.” — President Obama Barack Obama won the presidency in 2008 on a slogan: Hope and change. I am not sure where hope went, but to Americans who discovered recently they cannot keep their plans, period, Obama is offering a changed tune: […]

A perfect day to ride 100 miles

“It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country […]

Davis is stuck in RDA limbo

It seemed like a good idea at the time. But then again, so did Captain Cook’s third visit to Hawaii. On the night of Feb. 22, 2011, a unanimous Davis City Council voted to issue $18 million in new bonds for the Davis Redevelopment Agency. The idea was to keep millions of dollars in tax […]

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