Now U C Me, Now You Don't (1)

As we’ve progressed into the so-called digital age, we as a University should exhibit the dynamism that makes us such an excellent institution. Yeah we didn’t believe that crap either – but that’s the reason that Dianne Klein, of the UC’s office of the President, gave for the recent “modernization” of the logo of the University of California.

In an unprecedented apparent disregard for the 144 year old seal that has become famous among academic circles – the open book that is truly representative of Cal students during dead week – the University of California has decided to go with a sleeker, cleaner, and more minimalistic design for all publicity purposes. If you were a fan of the older Victorian type scroll and circle, that’ll still be available for viewing pleasure on all official documents and letters. It appears that this stunt is just a marketing campaign that is supposed to make the UC campuses more attractive to the average Californian, as if the almost 400,000 collective applications received during last year’s college rush weren’t enough.

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Among the tabs for CNN, NBC, the deplorably slow Google election results, and the FOX News you had open just for kicks, you may not have had time for social networking on election night. Who are you kidding – you probably popped open Tumblr for the continuing influx of memes or Twitter for Donald Trump’s call for a march on Washington. But the most interesting soiial network every time there’s a major news event is Facebook, because it’s people that you – hopefully – personally know talking about things about which they know little to nothing about. If your friends are anything like ours, they provided for plenty of unintentional comedy with their cute status updates that spammed the newsfeed.

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I Voted

There are lots of people posting pictures of themselves voting today – including pictures of their marked ballots. Bad idea. read more »

We got a lot of good answers to our questions, and we appreciate the people who took time out to talk to us.

For NorCal residents, people had the impression that they were hella hip, liberal and environmentally conscious. At least in the Bay Area, these things are easy to run into, even though they’re not entirely representative. The stereotype that people from NorCal are distinctly “pot smokers” is funny (and erroneous), as people from SoCal smoke all the time – at least from what we’ve experienced. We think this is just a Californian thing. Weed solidarity, brothers and sisters! read more »

Last week Governor Jerry Brown announced that he signed two bills that make it illegal for universities and employers to demand your passwords to social media and email accounts. The announcement, which the Governor made through his Facebook page, brings privacy laws into the 21st century. No longer can your university, your employer, or a potential employer ask you for access to your personal accounts. Those embarrassing pictures set to private are a little safer. read more »


At the beginning of every Canadian’s American Dream is a cheesy song about California.

We’ve compiled a short and sweet playlist for all to enjoy: whether you are out-of-state/international and can empathize with this never-ending California fascination, or a born-and-raised, in need of a refreshing sense of appreciation for the Golden State. Running commentary, free of charge, is included. read more »


Well, we don’t mean to depress you, since the UC budget crisis, general economic malaise and midterm season were probably already doing that pretty effectively. But we thought we’d point you in the direction of this article by Paul Harris, US correspondent for the British newspaper “The Observer”, which argues—a little more convincingly than we’re comfortable with—that California may be well on its way to becoming America’s first failed state. read more »


A new house in North Berkeley is to be the Superman of Bay Area houses, with the low, low asking price of $1,980,000. It’s novelty is in its sustainability, from its energy-saving solar panels to its retrofitted design, built to outlast The Big One. On top of all that, this not-so-humble abode is supposed to be quite a looker, built in a “high Italian” style.

We wonder if the future owner of Wonder House will enjoy living in lavish style when they are the last living person in California in the era of post-Mother of All Earthquakes. Time will tell.

Image Source: ewen and donabel under Creative Commons
A pricey house in north Berkeley is built to last [SF Chron]

There be some mutinous mutterin’ going on not an hour’s drive from San Francisco. Sick and tired of being ignored by lawmakers and political somebodies in Sacramento, a dozen Northern California and Oregon counties are plotting to form a brand new state. ‘Tis truth! If approved, Jefferson State would become the nation’s 51st – thereby ruining the beautiful proportions of the American flag, not to mention that one sing-along happy song that’s still being taught to toddlers by angelic grade-school mommies across the nation.

In scores of stores between Klamath Falls, Ore., to Dunsmuir, Calif., the hypothetical state’s flags hang in brazen tribute to the secession movement. Of course, the venture’s looking a mite quixotic at the moment, with one million signatures needed to even land the proposal on the California ballot. Tough deal, when Siskiyou County’s got 15,000 more bovines than it does people.

Advocates raise legitimate concerns – that Oregon and California aren’t taking care of their own, and that the region’s lifeblood industries, like fishing and timber, are being unfairly hampered by state regulations. Other concerns, like the effects of the flat-lining economy, rank as well. Get in line, guys.

Image Source: melynaguona under Creative Commons
A move to secede on California-Oregon border [SF Chron]

What, with the economy in shambles, and the BART system threatening to crumble under our feet unless it gets some Tender Lovin’ Care (a.k.a. funding), we see no better time to take on the time-consuming and costly task of making California a little bit more like Europe. Though, as the Daily Cal reports, “Bullet trains used to be a luxury only found in foreign metropolises,” this all could change as early as, um, well, eight years from now.

If Proposition 1A gets passed in November, we’d be one step closer to beginning construction on every Southern California-based Berkeley student’s pipe (or rail) dream–a high-speed train system “that would span from San Francisco to Los Angeles.” All California has to do is vote to funnel $10 billion in state bonds into the project, and gather up a bunch more in private capital. No biggie. read more »

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