View “Berkeley City Council meeting, Tuesday June 28, live coverage” on Storify
Wow. That was sobering. And depressing. Berkeleyside, this is a huge public service you’re doing. Personally, I don’t get it about the festivals.
The limitation on play-by-play type live coverage of council meetings is that it doesn’t provide much or any context. All issues arrive at the council dragging weeks to years of historical baggage — sometimes careful and well-analyzed policy differences, sometimes catty personality clashes, and almost anything in between. Live-blogging tends to avoid the history in favor of emphasizing just the most colorful quotes of the moment.
Looking forward to the more traditional journalistic coverage, and I recognize the difficulty of doing a good job without attending all of every council meeting and many commission meetings — a challenge for even much larger news organizations. But without understanding our history we have nothing but off-the-top emotion — something Berkeley civics is regrettably good at. Berkeleyside should not be reinforcing the idea that this is ALL we get at public meetings.
I’m soooooo tired of hearing about the pools.
The City doesn’t have the money, and the entirety of Berkeley Citizens shouldn’t have to bear the burden of something that will only be of use to the smallest minority of Berkeley residents. The pools measure lost because they wanted expensive new construction during a major recession. There is a warm pool at the YMCA. It makes more sense for the people who need it to just use that one.
Also are the workers at Pacific Steel really complaining about the Department of Homeland Security trying to enforce Federal law and check employee verification? Are they essentially admitting that there are illegal immigrants working there?
The pool at the YMCA is lovely, and the last time I checked it costs a fair chunk of change to belong to the Y, as opposed to a swim card at the local pool, not really a democratic or equitable approach to exercise.
My question is why are we spending 10’s of thousands of dollars studying everything, rather than fixing things? We have studied ourselves into not being able to fix anything. Sacramento street needs repair desperately, The Willard pools need to be emptied of dirt and reopened, and King Pool needs whatever repairs it needs. Perhaps we can do the infrastructure fixes, rather than study them. That would be a change, action!!! Also by actually doing the work, people get to have jobs and get paid – what a concept.
In Berkeley, all too often, it ain’t over even after it’s over. Old finally-decided issues never die, they just smolder forever in the hearts of the only-temporarily defeated.
We need a Berkeley-politics version of “Go the F*** to Sleep” . . .
Our neighboring city of Albany will complete its warm pool soon and one will be able to buy swim cards. How many warm pools do a few dozen hard-core users need?
Alan, I agree there are limitations. That’s why I’m working on a proper story. The live tweeting and the Storify version of it is intended as a quick peek into the council meeting. It’s not a substitute for a fulll story.
That is CLASSIC. :)
It’s not very democratic or equitable to expect the 112,580 citizens of Berkeley to pay millions of dollars for something that only a few dozen people will use.
A city council meeting is not like a baseball game, where the audience all know the players, the season stats and the overall framing and rules of play. Politics is a spectator sport in Berkeley only for a few hundred activists at most; for the rest, random colorful quotations don’t really add any insight.
Your followup story met your usual high standard — but partly because you had to explain the context in order for it to make any sense journalistically,
Speaking of baseball, it would be really interesting for someone to make up virtual baseball-style cards for each of the big players in Berkeley politics. Simple pages with a photo, some basic information, and a quote or two that sums up their positions on their issues of emphasis.
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