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Stories by Don Bauder

Sunshine-taxed to the max!

Buy? Rent? Both unaffordable in SD

Should you buy or rent a home in San Diego? Neither, if you look at such a decision from an economic perspective. According to Zillow.com, the share of median income needed to buy a home ...

Dude, that fish taco place called again

Rubio's says remote messaging not sales calls, seeks FCC clarification

Rubio's, the Carlsbad-based Mexican fast-food chain, on August 11 asked the Federal Communications Commission to clarify Telephone Consumer Protection Act applicability. In 1991, the federal government passed the act to protect people against pestiferous telephone ...

Proposed La Jolla music venue challenged in suit

Tapenade Restaurant charges fraud

La Bastide, a corporation which owns the tony Tapenade Restaurant, has sued the owner of a La Jolla shopping center on which La Jolla Music Society plans to build a $40 million performing arts center. ...

Shames lawsuit thrown out

Aguirre, Peffer get summary judgment

Superior Court judge Ronald Prager today (Aug. 15) threw out remaining claims that Michael Shames, former head of Utility Consumers' Action Network (UCAN), filed against whistle-blower David Peffer and Peffer's lawyer, Mike Aguirre. Earlier, Prager ...

July jobs down, unemployment rate up

Local education jobs drop

The San Diego County unemployment rate rose to 6.6 percent in July, up from a revised 6.1 percent in June. County jobs declined by 5,900 in the month, mainly because a loss of 12,700 government ...

Ian Campbell blasted in opera magazine

Where did that "amendment" come from?

The September edition of Opera News, the magazine for opera lovers published by the Metropolitan Opera Guild, has a long, sizzling investigative piece on the demise and (hopefully) rebirth of San Diego Opera. Ian Campbell, ...

SD pension mess hits Journal's front page

County gambling with derivatives

On the front page of today's (August 14) Wall Street Journal is a story titled, "Facing a Pension Shortfall, San Diego Dials Up the Risk." The article tells how the county's pension fund, only 79 ...

Later on, San Diego

Gen-Xers depart — demographics change could have "serious implications"

People 35 to 49 years old — Gen-Xers — have been leaving San Diego and taking their children along, notes Kelly Cunningham, economist for the National University System Institute for Policy Research. One reason is ...

SeaWorld stock tanks

Blackfish documentary, earnings hurt company

Stock of SeaWorld Entertainment has plunged 31.51 percent this morning (August 13) to $19.18. Earnings per share in the second quarter were 43 cents, down from the 59 cents Wall Street analysts expected. Revenue was ...

Do good, do well

Corporations would be well advised to please, not screw, the public.

Some politicians tell us corporations are people. Yeah — greedy people. Two years ago, one poll showed that 83 percent of people — real people — believe that companies should pursue their business goals while ...

Bladder smuggler

Totoaba fish is endangered

Song Shen Zhen was sentenced to a year in custody and told to pay $120,500 to the Mexican environmental protection agency today (Aug. 11). Last year, Zhen had been caught smuggling dried Totoaba bladders — ...

More sweat, more money

Endurance events pump up economy

San Diego's endurance events — marathons, open-water swims, triathlons, 5ks, and mud-runs — are bringing in money, according to a study by the National University System Institute for Policy Research. Last year, more than 134,000 ...

Unconventional logic

Combined stadium/convention center plan "ridiculous," says expert

Since the convention-center expansion was thumbed down by the appellate court, the corporate-welfare crowd — particularly the Chargers and U-T San Diego — has switched to touting a combined football stadium/convention center. "It's going from ...

Sempra under investigation, says Mexican press

Charges of corruption, influence-peddling, money-laundering, and organized crime

The Mexican press reported this past weekend that Sempra Energy is under investigation by the Department of Homeland Security. Imagen del Golfo, a news agency in Veracruz, reported that Sempra is being investigated for corruption, ...

Oh, Hyphen Man, where are you?

Comic-Con, and Utah's Comic Con slug it out

San Diego's Comic-Con has sent a cease and desist order to Salt Lake City Comic Con. According to Salt Lake's papers, the Tribune and Deseret News, Salt Lake has no intention of backing down. It ...

In Bed with Wall Street

Regulatory corruption exposed, thanks in part to Gary Aguirre

An enlightening book, In Bed with Wall Street: The Conspiracy Crippling Our Global Economy, has been published by Palgrave Macmillan. The thesis is that Wall Street, its regulators, and politicians conspire together for their own ...

Jack jumps

Stock soars 10.5% on earnings, outlook

Stock of San Diego's Jack in the Box fast-food chain leapt 10.46% today (Aug. 7) to $61.25. The company, bolstered by booming sales of late-night and breakfast offerings, reported third-quarter earnings of 65 cents a ...

Cherry-picking a no-no

Mausner, Drennan banned from securities industry

A Securities and Exchange Commission administrative-law judge yesterday (Aug. 5) banned Ian O. Mausner and Douglas F. Drennan from the securities business. Mausner, was a cofounder and chief executive officer of J.S. Oliver, an investment ...

Ho-hum bandit gets heave-ho

Judge adds 70 months to sentence

Adam Lynch, known as "the Ho-Hum Bandit" for the nonchalant way he robbed San Diego banks in 2010, was sentenced today (Aug. 4) to an additional 70 months in prison. This brings his total sentence ...

Bucket gist

Lucia Capital takes on executive with curious recent past

The financial-planning media are abuzz about the departure of San Diegan Derek Bruton from LPL Financial, which has headquarters in San Diego and Boston, and has 17,000 financial advisers under its wing. Publications such as ...

Death of a thousand cuts

Mayor Faulconer didn't support urban planner Fulton or his ideas

The word is getting around town on the resignation of nationally known urban planner Bill Fulton after slightly more than a year on the job. "He had very little support from the mayor and there ...

San Diego's famed urban planner — leaving so soon?

Bill Fulton, hired last summer, to leave at the end of August

San Diego's planning director, Bill Fulton, has resigned, effective August 30. Fulton was brought in by ex-mayor Bob Filner in June of last year to head the planning department, which had been dismantled by former ...

Sure beats jail time

San Diegan banned from securities business for five years

The Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday (July 31) announced an agreement by which Jason D. Huntley of San Diego will be banned from the securities business for five years. Huntley agreed to the judgment without ...

Who made these errors?

Under pressure, California Public Utilities Commission releases report

The California Public Utilities Commission late today (July 31) released a report that is devastating to both Southern California Edison and its protector, the commission. The U-T today ran a story about the CPUC's refusal ...

Will NFL neglect welfare of birds?

With all its glass, the new Vikings stadium will kill them

The American Bird Conservancy has asked the National Football League to modify plans for the soon-to-be-built Minnesota Vikings stadium. It will feature large expanses of glass that will kill thousands of birds over time, says ...

Peeved, to be sure

Newspapers call for utilities commission chief Peevey's head

This week, two events affecting Pacific Gas & Electric, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), and CPUC president Michael Peevey, have ignited a firestorm of justifiable indignation. First, the City of San Bruno managed to ...

"Official ticket site," in a pig's eye

FTC nails local company for online deception

The Federal Trade Commission and the State of Connecticut have fined three online ticket resellers $1.4 million for deceptive advertising. One of the companies, SecureBoxOffice, is run out of San Diego by James Moran. SecureBoxOffice ...

Some of that California money

Manchester hosts cash roundup for Texas candidate — $5000 gets you in

Doug Manchester, who intends to build a long-delayed hotel in Austin, is putting on a glitzy fundraiser for Greg Abbott, the Republican who is running for Texas governor against Democrat Wendy Davis. Manchester and his ...

Auditor Luna gets snubbed

The downtown corporate-welfare crowd wants an “independent” auditor.

City Auditor Eduardo Luna was promised he would be independent. But after stepping on toes of the downtown crowd, he is catching flak.

No love

Suspension of La Jolla Tennis Club president results in backlash

Tonight (July 29), the board of La Jolla Tennis Club suspended its former president, Phifer Crute, until January of 2016. She was earlier deposed as president — a post she did not hold long. Crute ...

Yes, we will defend Jan Goldsmith

Council approves city attorney's request for lawyer expenses in email lawsuit

The city council today, (July 29) by a 7-1 vote, approved spending taxpayer money up to $150,000 to pay city attorney Jan Goldsmith's legal bills. The lawsuit against Goldsmith forces him to reveal the contents ...

Encinitas? You're pretty snobby

Poway ranked 37th, thanks to high home prices and incomes

Movoto.com, a real estate research outfit, has culled 2010 census data to rank the 50 snobbiest small cities (population 45,000 to 65,000). What counts is highest median household income, highest median home values, largest percentage ...

San Diego recovers poorly

Stats study ranks our burg 103rd among 150 metro areas

WalletHub, which compiles economic and demographic statistics on American cities, finds that California cities, including San Diego, have recovered from the Great Recession more slowly than other American cities. The company looks at a number ...

NY Times pooh-poohs Comic-Con spending

But U-T says money flows

The headline in a New York Times story this morning (July 28) is "Large Crowds Spend Little at Comic-Con." The story — written by two reporters with help from a third — quotes a panelist ...

Utilities commission was cozy with utility

Pacific Gas gets love letters from state regulators

The publication SFGate revealed yesterday (July 26) just how cozy officials of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) are with the utilities they are supposed to regulate. The City of San Bruno, which suffered a ...

Bridgepoint's troubles continue

SEC, Massachusetts probing for-profit university

Bridgepoint Education announced today (Jan. 25) that the Massachusetts attorney general is investigating whether the company's business practices comply with the state's consumer protection laws. Bridgepoint recently settled with Iowa for $7.25 million and is ...

Pendleton "Godfather" gets two years

Took more than $100,000 in bribes

Natividad Lara "Nate" Cervantes, the so-called "Godfather" of Camp Pendleton, was sentenced to two years in prison today (July 25) for accepting more than $100,000 in bribes from contractors seeking millions of dollars of military ...

Is Jerry Brown hiding his San Onofre role?

Suit says governor won't provide documents

Yesterday (July 24), attorney Mike Aguirre filed a suit against governor Jerry Brown, complaining that he may have violated the California Public Records Act by refusing to reveal any communications he had on the termination ...

Polls suggest Peters and DeMaio are ahead

Yesterday (July 24), a poll by House Majority PAC, a Democratic super-PAC, showed Scott Peters ahead of Carl DeMaio in the 52nd congressional district, 48 percent to 43 percent. Peters's purported lead was slightly above ...

U-T sued for copyright infringement

"Is BWP Media the New Photo Copyright Infringement Troll?"

Los Angeles-based BWP Media USA, doing business as Pacific Coast News, filed suit yesterday (July 24) in Los Angeles federal court, claiming the U-T has used copyrighted celebrity photographs on its websites without permission. BWP ...

Sempra to travel with Brown in Mexico

The utility is giving the governor bucks

Ninety businesspeople will be traveling with Gov. Jerry Brown to Mexico next week, according to the Sacramento Bee. Many represent companies that are giving to Brown's 2014 reelection campaign, even though they gave more heavily ...

Herbalife knocked as illegal pyramid scheme

Wall Street fat cats try running stock up as critic tries to run it down

Herb Greenberg, who is in the enviable position of living in San Diego and being a regular on the New York–based CNBC TV business channel, this morning (July 24) said hedge-fund head Bill Ackman made ...

"Made in America"?

Consumers sue, say it ain't so

The Del Mar Law Group is suing blue-jeans companies over "Made in America" labels. In one suit that the firm hopes will be certified as a class action, the plaintiff states that "fabric, thread, buttons, ...

Disabilities act lawsuits pile up

San Diego lawyers cash in, despite law to prevent abuses

According to the Desert Sun, Coachella Valley businesses, particularly hotels, are being hit with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) lawsuits. San Diego attorney David Wakefield is filing many of those suits. Wakefield is a former ...

Only better than Newark and Laredo

Chula Vista among lowest-ranked recreation cities

San Diego County has the weather for recreation but not the amenities. That's the inevitable conclusion of a study by WalletHub, a group that gathers statistics and ranks metro areas. WalletHub rated cities on on ...

Bubble value

San Diego median housing cost -- $300,000 more than nation

The median price of San Diego homes is $474,300 — more than $300,000 above the U.S. median of $174,200, according to Zillow.com. San Diego County prices are now only 11.9 percent below the peak of ...

Padres play dead ball

Historic hitting futility could set record

The headline in today's New York Times: "Padres' Offense May Go Down As Worst Ever." The team's .214 batting average is 23 points lower than the second-worst team, says the Times. If the batting average ...

Jobs numbers rise, but so does jobless rate

Unemployment rate jumped to 6.1% in June

The San Diego County unemployment rate rose to 6.1 percent in June, up from a revised 5.8 percent in May. The county gained 9700 jobs in the month. Leisure and hospitality jobs rose by 3000 ...

Sex-lube maker sues La Jolla Playhouse

Michael Trigg didn't get his promised movie lines

Michael Trigg, whose Valencia-based company makes products to enhance lovemaking, such as "clitoral arousal gel," is in high dudgeon. He has sued several institutions in Los Angeles Superior Court; one of the defendants is La ...

66.3% — Isn't that a solid "D"?

SD third in clean-tech leadership

Clean Edge, a clean-tech research firm, yesterday (July 15) published its ranking of states and metro areas in clean-tech commitment and leadership. San Diego ranked third among the largest metro areas, up from seventh last ...

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