LAOBSERVED Kevin Roderick • November 30 2011 11:05 AM

The breakdown is 290 booked for failure to disperse, one for battery on a police officer and one for interfering with an officer, the L.A. Times reports. Bail for most was expected to be $5,000. Mayor Villaraigosa and Chief Beck have just held a presser where they effusively praised the efficiency, professionalism and calm of the 1,400 police who were on the scene, but some protesters are reporting scattered violent incidents with cops away from the cameras at City Hall.

MoveOn Report: Congress vs. The Internet

As soon as this week, Congress will start debating whether to give the government the power to turn off parts of the Internet. If that sounds like a terrible recipe for abuse of power, that’s because it is.

If enacted, a new law would make it so a simple allegation of copyright infringement—with no review process—could lead to the shutdown of sites from YouTube to Wikipedia to Any website, foreign or U.S.-based, could be wiped out on suspicion and made unavailable to everyone in the world.

For example, if you (or Justin Bieber) wanted to post a video to YouTube of yourself singing a Beatles song, a record company could force the Department of Justice to shut down YouTube. Really.

But as you may have guessed, Congress didn’t come up with this tragically terrible idea on their own. Lobbyists representing Comcast, Pfizer, record and movie companies, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have been pushing Democrats and Republicans to pass bills to allow this new kind of Internet censorship. And they’re close to getting their way.

But a small number of Democrats are standing strong and saying “No” to these powerful special interest groups. They need our help.

Senator Ron Wyden from Oregon is one of our champions. He has promised to start a historic filibuster of the Internet Censorship Act where he’ll read the names of every person who signs a petition against Internet censorship. It’s the perfect opportunity for 5 million Internet-connected progressives to visibly add their voice to a Senate debate. The more of us that sign, the stronger this effort to block this terrible law will be.

We know that the Internet’s openness, freedom, and lack of censorship are what make it a bastion of infinite possibility, continued innovation, and job creation. Innovative companies like Google, Facebook, Twitter, Mozilla, and Yahoo have spoken out against this law, saying: We should not jeopardize a foundational structure that has worked for content owners and Internet companies alike and provides certainty to innovators with new ideas for how people create, find, discuss, and share information lawfully online.

Internet venture capitalists say that the legislation is “ripe for abuse,” and leading law professors reject it because it will “allow the government to block Internet access to websites.”

We condemn censorship overseas when it happens in China or Iran. But today, we need to stand up for freedom of speech on the Internet here at home.

Say NO to Internet Censorship now.

Thanks for all you do.


Courtesy of Cinema Libre Studio,
FRIDAY, December 9, 2011 – 7:00 PM

Home of Rachel and Jay, 601 9th Street, Santa Monica, one block east of Lincoln, one block north of Montana
Southeast Corner, Easy Parking

RSVP : or call 310-780-7363 (first 20)

DINNER B4 FILM: Meet @ Izzy’s Deli, 15th @ Wilshire at 5:00 PM. AFTER FILM: End the embargo to CUBA COFFEE w/ Izzy’s cookies. PARKING @ Izzy’s Deli: Rear lot on 15th. Street parking.

Palestine Blues (2005) 1 hr. 20 min.
While the Israeli government views the West Bank security wall as a critical safety measure, this searing documentary explores how it has also disrupted the lives of the people who live and work in the region. Palestinian American Nida Sinnokrot shows how the 400-mile barrier separating the West Bank and the Gaza Strip from the rest of the country has hindered trade, work and social interaction, sparking a grassroots resistance effort. Olive trees are bulldozed.

Your $5 donation will go towards your purchase of ZATOUN OLIVE OIL, Palestine in a bottle. Perfect holiday gift OR Change-Links Progressive Newspaper/Calendar and Cuban 5 Defense

MoveON: GOP Is 100% For 1%

Senate Democrats are proposing an extension of small but helpful tax cuts for the 99%—paid for by a surcharge on millionaires. But Republicans in the Senate are now lining up to oppose the same tax cuts they already supported.

And that’s not the only example. With votes on unemployment benefits, Medicare payments, and a Wall Street tax likely before the end of the year, the lines have never been clearer. This final month of 2011 will force every member of Congress to show who they really represent.

That’s why we’re holding a “99% Congressional Speak-Out” at the office of Representative Xavier Becerra in Los Angeles on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2011, at 5:00 PM, to make sure he hears how badly we need him to stand up for the 99% in the final days of 2011.

Speak-outs are simple events that give people the chance to share their stories and messages with politicians and the media. These “99% Speak-Outs” will give us the chance to turn our problems into political pressure. And with hundreds of events happening nationwide, we can make it clear that the choice in these last days of 2011 is between standing with the 99% and standing with Wall Street and the wealthy.

Please attend the “99% Congressional Speak-Out” at the office of Representative Xavier Becerra in Los Angeles on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2011, at 5:00 PM.

MoveOn is committed to nonviolence in the long tradition of protest movements throughout our history that have brought America closer to our founding dream—liberty and justice for all. As progressives, we respect all people and do not support or endorse any violence or property destruction.

A Look at the School District’s Nutrition Program

By Hannah Heineman

School nutrition programs not only provide nutrition for school children but can influence children’s eating habits for the rest of their lives.

The Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District’s nutrition program provides a variety of options for students, including breakfast and lunch programs, salad bars and, with ingredients from Santa Monica’s Farmers’ Market, lunch options from outside vendors, snacks, vending machines, and the opportunity for students to grow fruits and vegetables in school gardens.

The District’s Director of Food and Nutrition Services, Orlando Griego, told the Dispatch his department’s self-sustaining budget for the 2010-2011 school year was $3 million. His department employs about 72 people, including office staff and drivers. The majority of his employees work three hours a day.

The cost for a student to purchase breakfast and/or lunch from the District’s program varies, depending upon the student’s family’s finances. For example, a full priced lunch at the elementary school level is $3.00 while a reduced price lunch is 40 cents or free. A lunch from the program at the middle or high school level is $3.50 with the reduced lunch also at 40 cents or free. At the end of each month the District applies for a reimbursement from the state for its reduced and free meals. Last year the District received $1.67 for each reduced lunch elementary lunch they served and for each free lunch they received $1.97. At the secondary level they received $2.53 for each reduced lunch and $2.93 for each free lunch.

About 3,200 – 4,000 District students eat breakfast and/or lunches provided by the district. Other students purchase a la cart items.

Students also have the choice at the middle and high schools to purchase lunch from outside vendors. Griego emphasized, “Everything offered for sale must meet the state nutrition requirements.” The district’s nutrition specialist is responsible for checking foods for nutritional content. His department also tries to choose local outside vendors such as Gourmet Ameci Pizza.

Students are also provided choices for snacks for their morning nutrition break at the district’s elementary and middle schools. At Will Rogers and Edison Elementary Schools, a grant provides the funding for every student to have either a fresh fruit or vegetable four days a week as a snack. At Lincoln Middle School, children can purchase a churro or a cinnamon roll.

The Food and Nutrition Services department also manages the contract for all the vending machines at the various school sites. These machines contain a variety of drinks but no longer includes sodas because they were banned from being sold in campus vending machines by the state legislature as of July, 2009. Chips, cookies and pop tarts are also offered in the vending machines.

The District also offers various opportunities for students to grow fruits and vegetables as part of their gardening program. Lettuce from the elementary school gardening program is used in their lunch salad bars. Lettuce from Santa Monica High School’s garden is used for lunch salads sold at the school’s Vikes Inn.

An independent nutritionist, Debby Pool, from Nutrition Concepts, Inc. reviewed the district’s breakfast and lunch menus for this story. She concluded “In general, these menus are far better than many that I review so I applaud the Food Services staff for the efforts they’re making to provide healthier choices to the students. The concern I have is that along with the healthier selections that are offered, (like the salad bar, whole grain breads, fresh fruit, etc.) that are available, there are many less healthy options and children, when given the choice, will usually gravitate towards those options because they’re used to (and like) the taste of salt, fat and/or sweet. If we’re really serious about making children’s health a priority, we have to first educate so they know the how and why of making good choices and then we have to create an environment that helps them choose foods that are healthier for them. Taking away (or reducing) temptations like cheese pizza (which I see a lot of on the menus) will make it easier for students to make healthier choices.”

The Dispatch also spoke with some parents and a student. Amy Bishop Dunbar, a parent of 8th and 12th graders packs a lunch for her children because there is a long wait in line for school lunches and the cost is too high. Her 8th grader, Katie Dunbar mentioned that the choices offered at Lincoln Middle School for morning snack aren’t healthy “because the salad bar is only open at lunch.” She also explained that most kids bring lunch from home and may buy something to add to it.

McKinley Elementary School and Santa Monica High School parent Tenisha Collins stated, “The McKinley lunch is awesome because of the salad bar.” She suggested that the school “should allow uneaten lunch to be brought home so much food isn’t wasted.”

Another McKinley parent who just wants to be called Stephanie packs lunches for her children “partially for nutritional reasons, but mostly for reasons of time. If my children had to stand in line to get their food, they would have approximately 5 minutes to eat. As it is, they only have 15 minutes to eat, if they are lucky.”

The District School Board recently decided to have District staff conduct a comprehensive study of all food and beverages available in the district to identify items of minimal nutritional value after deciding to continue to offer flavored milk as an beverage option with district meals.

Contact: Hannah Heineman