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Judge wants same-sex marriage trial to be broadcast online.
Mustang Daily’s beer columnist broke in the new year with Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale. IN ARTS, 7
IN NEWS, 4 Volume LXXIV, Number 56
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Thursday, January 7, 2010
Poly graduate earns test pilots’ highest honor Siebold advances goal of space tourism Will Taylor
Record number of immigration crimes charged in U.S. By Howard Mintz san jose mercury news
A Cal Poly aerospace engineering graduate and flight test pilot earned an international award last fall for his role in developing aircraft for the fledgling space tourism industry. The award put him in a select group that includes famous pilots John Glenn and Neil Armstrong. Peter Siebold, who completed his degree in 2001, received the Iven C. Kincheloe award at the 53rd Annual Symposium for the international Society of Experimental Test Pilots (SETP). The award is given after aeronautical companies nominate pilots whom they think have made a significant contribution to flight test through development, performance and testing. “It’s without a question the most prestigious award a test pilot can receive in his career,” Douglas Shane, president of Scaled Composites and Siebold’s boss, said. “It’s likened to a Heisman Trophy in football.” Siebold won the yearly award specifically for his role as chief test pilot and on the Model 348 WhiteKnightTwo plane, from the first flight through subsequent testing and modification processes. “I’m humbled to be in the company of significant contributors to flight testing,” Siebold said. “It’s hard to see yourself as equal to some of those folks that have received the honor previously.” Siebold may feel humble, but his work speaks for itself. WhiteKnightTwo is part of billionaire Sir Richard Branson’s dream for the potential space tourism industry. WhiteKnightTwo would act as the carrier and take-off platform for Virgin Galactic tourism space ships at an elevation of 47,000 feet, Siebold said. Basically, WhiteKnightTwo would fly with a space ship attached, get to the appropriate altitude and then act as the take-off platform. WhiteKnightTwo is three times the size of any aircraft Scaled Composites had ever designed or built and is the largest he has flown, Siebold said. Despite the size and scale of the project, he said it continues
SAN JOSE, Calif. — As Israel Gonzalez-Reyes recently stood before a San Jose judge for sentencing, his case had all the ingredients of the most common crime in the nation’s federal courts over the past year. The 39-year-old defendant had been deported to his native Mexico on eight separate occasions, repeatedly returning to the United States before winding up in jail, usually charged with a variety of state crimes ranging from burglary to drunken driving. Federal prosecutors had had enough — this time around, Gonzalez-Reyes was charged under criminal immigration laws forbidding the illegal reentry of a deported alien back into the United States. More than ever, federal prose-
cutors are using such felony charges and the threat of serious federal prison time to make lawbreakers think twice before making another trip across the border. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department filed nearly 92,000 immigration-related criminal cases in the federal courts. The record-breaking trend accounted for more than half of all new federal prosecutions in the country, according to Justice Department data maintained at Syracuse University. Spurred by the relentless surge of illegal immigration in border states such as Texas and Arizona, where immigration prosecutions total in the thousands, the federal government has concluded that simple deportation is no longer an adequate response to repeat offenders with criminal records. Experts attribute the steady rise in prosecutions to several factors, including an see Immigration, page 2
A conceptual sketch of WhiteKnightTwo, the plane Cal Poly graduate Peter Siebold tested releasing SpaceShipTwo. to exceed expectations. Siebold’s confidence and success with WhiteKnightTwo might be attributed to his experience and versatility. He flew his first solo flight, gaining his pilot’s license at 16, the youngest age that a person can do so. He later taught flight classes at the San Luis Obispo Airport, while a student at Cal Poly and has now logged about 2,500 hours of flight time in 40 different types of fixed-wing aircraft. Siebold is not only an experienced pilot, but also a capable engineer. “Engineer and pilot are a perfect combo of those two interests,” he said. “As a test pilot, you need to understand the engineering as well as how things work.” Siebold said employees of Scaled Composites are encouraged to be multi-talented and work in different areas. Siebold has, for instance, worked with computers managing avionics and simulation developments. The mid-size company fo-
cuses on innovative designs and technology within the industry. Terry Tomeny, president of SETP and director of flight test operations at Calspan Bicycleworks at the Mojave Airport, said that the Scaled Composite philosophy is admired throughout the industry. “They’re a very unique company that does a lot of groundbreaking work with very new airplanes,” Tomeny said. “They’re very confident and efficient compared to the big companies who develop slower and spend more money.” Siebold said that his Cal Poly education prepared him well for work at a unique company like Scaled Composites. “My education gave me two things: a toolbox of knowledge to do the work and, more importantly, it fostered the creative spirit and can-do attitude,” he said. “Scaled is a very similar place where we’re always looking for people who try something new and learn from their mistakes.”
by Ryan Sidarto
“A City Asleep”
Immigration continued from page 1
increase in immigration and border patrol agents during the Bush administration, and greater emphasis on prosecuting cases that are often easy to prove. There is ample doubt that criminal enforcement can put much of a dent in the nation’s illegal immigration problems. And critics worry that many routine immigration matters are being transformed into federal felony charges with increasingly lengthy sentences. There is also concern about a disproportionate impact on Mexican nationals. A San Jose Mercury News review of 52 immigration cases filed in the San Jose federal courts between January and October found every defendant was from Mexico. “It’s riding and walking while Hispanic,” said Barry Portman, the Bay Area’s federal public defender, whose office typically represents immigrants too poor to pay for their own lawyers. Supporters of the tougher enforcement approach say the prosecutions are needed to target illegal immigrants with criminal backgrounds who keep re-entering the country. Indeed, the review of the San Jose cases shows these defendants are often unsympathetic. They have typically been deported numerous times, and they carry rap sheets that run the gamut from drug and robbery charges to domestic violence. In some instances, they have even been prosecuted before in federal court, serving time for immigration crimes before being deported, only to return to the United States. One San Jose defendant charged this year, Esequiel Sandoval-Ramos, has been deported eight times and was convicted four separate times in San Diego federal court on illegal re-entry charges before his most recent arrest here,
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court records show. Prosecutors say they must deter illegal immigration by those with criminal records, which is driving up the numbers. “Does it always work? Of course not,” said Brian Stretch, chief of the criminal division for the Bay Area U.S. attorney’s office. “But it’s important to keep trying.” Advocates for tighter immigration enforcement say such prosecutions are overdue, but they caution criminal charges are only part of dealing with the sprawling immigration issue. “We need to have these prosecutions, but they are not the silver bullet,” said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, which advocates stricter measures such as curtailing the ability of illegal immigrants to secure jobs here. For defendants such as Gonzalez-Reyes, the aggressive prosecutions mean a long prison stay before deportation. In October, a defense lawyer argued that Gonzalez-Reyes’ sentence should only be about a year because he had returned to the U.S. this time to earn money for a prosthetic for a child who’d just lost a leg in an accident. But Gonzalez-Reyes’ record was too disturbing for U.S. District Judge James Ware, who sentenced the defendant to 37 months in prison. The question now, as with the tens of thousands of cases being prosecuted in the federal courts, is whether the system will see him again. “It seems to me like we’re putting a finger in the dike,” said Kevin Johnson, a University of California, Davis, law professor and immigration expert. “These prosecutions are more a gesture than a meaningful attempt to deal with the immigration problem.”
News editor: Kate McIntyre firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Slums are front lines in Mexican drug war Alfredo Corchado the dallas morning news
CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico — In 2009, the hit men didn’t take a break, not even for holidays. The trail of blood left by the guntoting sicarios stains the entire city, but especially here in Barrio Azul, where families grieve for children lost. “In this block alone, all the teens were either killed or disappeared,” said Pedro Reyna Diaz, 46, whose two stepsons were among those swept up in the drug cartel warfare waged in this neglected neighborhood. “An entire generation was lost.” As the Mexican and U.S. governments prepare to shift their strategy in the drug war, from military and police support to a “softer” approach emphasizing jobs and education, neighborhoods like Barrio Azul are prime candidates for the new effort. The idea is to lessen the lucrative lure of drug cartels by creating jobs and educational opportunities in vulnerable areas, much like efforts in Afghanistan and Colombia. It’s in neighborhoods like Barrio Azul where President Felipe Calderon’s war could be won or lost. “What struck me most after the short time I was in Juarez was not the threat of the violence but what occurs if you lose a whole generation,” U.S. Ambassador Carlos Pascual said after a tour of Juarez. He and a senior Obama administration official both indicated in interviews that, going forward, the U.S. and Mexico will plan to focus less on a military response to drug violence and more on rooting out the problems that have left generations of Mexico’s young vulnerable to unscrupulous cartel members. Since January 2008, Ciudad Juarez has been a city on the brink — ground zero in Mexico’s war against violent drug cartels. In two years, more than 4,200 people have been killed in this city of 1.5 million people across the Rio Grande from El Paso, Texas. Two of Mexico’s most powerful cartels are battling for control of the city, a gateway for drugs going to the U.S. as well as a growing domestic drug market. In 2009, the city’s 173 slayings for every 100,000 residents made it, by some estimates, the murder capital of the Americas, if not the world. Baghdad had 48 violent deaths per 100,000 residents, according to the Citizens’ Council for Public Security, a nongovernmental organization in Mexico City. Overall, more than 15,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence across Mexico since December 2006, when Calderon began deploying security forces to several troubled regions of the country, including 7,000 soldiers and 2,000 federal police in Juarez. Next year the military is expected to gradually pull out, replaced by a newly trained Juarez police force and federal agents. But few believe the violence will end. “You hear it on the streets that capos would rather set the city on fire than give an inch to their rivals,” said Alfredo Quijano, editor of the newspaper Norte de Ciudad Juarez. “And that’s literally what they’re doing, setting the city on fire, burning
alfredo corchado the dallas morning news
Dionisia Villalobos Jacquez, a resident of the Barrio Azul neighborhood of Juarez, Mexico, shows a picture of her 16-year-old son Eduardo, killed during an attack on a rehab center in September 2009. everything from vehicles to businesses, homes, to even people alive.” Slums like Barrio Azul represent fertile ground for recruiting cartel foot soldiers. The neighborhood is a microcosm of the city’s social ills, with poverty and rampant crime. In recent years, cartels have recruited teens on the U.S. side as well, in Texas cities including El Paso, Laredo and Brownsville. Kids grow up to become thugs, and many end up in cheap tin coffins. In Barrio Azul, an area encompassing a couple dozen rundown blocks, residents said in interviews that they attended as many as 30 neighborhood funerals in the past year alone, mostly for teens. One of them, Eduardo Villalobos, 16, was among nine young men and one woman gunned down at a rehab center known as Annex of Life. The year before, as cartel violence spiked, Villalobos’ 19-year-old son, Alberto, was gunned down. She now keeps her three younger children at home. “We’ll keep losing kids unless we can provide them with jobs, an education, anything to keep them away from trafficking drugs or killing people,” said Reyna, stepdad to the two Villalobos boys. Today, an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe, freshly painted on the side of a Barrio Azul home, overlooks nearly deserted dirt streets.The neighborhood is desolate, with stray dogs, piles of trash, and abandoned homes marked with graffiti. A young boy pretends he’s a hit man, waving a toy gun. “It’s all gone,” Reyna said, “a whole life disappeared, as people died or fled.” Two blocks away, young kids play soccer on an unpaved street, stirring dust clouds as they kick the ball, someone’s Christmas gift. Parents and siblings keep a close eye on them. Among them is Alma Nayeli Villegas,
18, watching from behind a white steel fence. Others warm themselves over open fires outside cinderblock homes. “The youth are the most vulnerable, easy prey,” Villegas says as she watches her 13-year-old brother, Juan de Dios, a brown rosary dangling from his neck. Is he religious? “No, he just wants to believe in something,” she says, “especially after what happened to our neighborhood this year. He wants to believe that someone or something will protect him from the evil.” Each of the eight children playing soccer, including two brothers from El Paso, knows someone who was killed in the past year. Around the corner is Abarrotes Oralia, the only grocery store still open in the neighborhood. Owner Oralia Rocha, 56, says her competition — three stores and a tortilleria –— disappeared after they failed to pay the $1,000 monthly extortion fee. She, too, shut down for three weeks and then reopened under an “arrangement” that she refuses to discuss for fear of reprisal. Rocha says that aside from jobs and schools, what residents in neighborhoods like Barrio Azul need most “is renewed faith in our community, in ourselves.” Thousands of people have fled neighborhoods like Barrio Azul for El Paso or other U.S. cities, including Los Angeles,Albuquerque and Dallas-Fort Worth. They include the family of Ricardo Bolivar, 42, who sells pirated CDs and DVDs near the international bridge. A few months ago he sent his wife, Angelica, and four children to live in North Texas, joining their oldest son, 19-year-old Richie, who was born in Fort Worth. Bolivar hopes that Richie, as a U.S. citizen, can “fix our papers so we can all live in Texas.” “Mexico,” he says, “is no longer a place for young kids.”
Thursday, January 7, 2010 www.mustangdaily.net
Word on the Street “If you could travel anywhere in space, where would you go?” “The Milky Way would be cool to go in and see, or Pluto.” -Linsey Stahowski, psychology senior
“Probably Neptune, because it’s as far as we know out there.” -Kurtis Kobara, agribusiness senior
“Saturn, because everyone always talks about the rings and how beautiful it is. It looks peaceful.” -Donna Mena, sophomore
“Orion’s Belt, because you can’t tell what’s behind it.” -Nathan Phelps, aerospace engineering junior
“I’d go to Mars and see if there are any aliens there.” -Kyle Mohamed, construction management sophomore
“Mars, because they did it in ‘Total Recall’ and that’s an awesome movie.” -Ryan Mazzuca, agribusiness senior
compiled and photographed by jennifer titcomb
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Wire Editor: Jennifer Titcomb
Once riding high, Democrats now see disaster looming Steven Thomma and David Lightman mcclatchy newspapers
WASHINGTON — What a difference a year makes. Last January, Democrats were streaming into Washington eager to celebrate not just the inauguration of Barack Obama as president, but also their party’s ascendancy from coast to coast. They’d gained ground in onceRepublican turf such as the Mountain West and the Border South, added to their majorities in Congress and topped it all by seizing the presidency. “Yes, we can,” a triumphant Obama trumpeted, and the country seemed to cheer in agreement. Now, the country seems to be yelling back, “No, you can’t,” and putting the Democrats on the defensive heading into this year’s elections, when the entire House of Representatives, 37 seats in the Senate and 39 governor’s offices, are up for election. The president’s poll numbers have dropped. The party’s top domestic agenda item, health care, is unpopular. Its candidates lost key statewide races in New Jersey and Virginia in November, and now high-profile Democrats such as Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter and Connecticut Sen. Christopher Dodd say they’ll retire rather than risk losing in the fall. Whether it’s caused by a backlash against the Democratic agenda or the natural swing of the pendulum against the party that’s in power at a time of economic struggle, the result is the same: trouble for the Democrats. “The fact that we’re seeing Democrats bailing, in an election year, suggests maybe it’s a tide that’s turning,” said Gary Rose, a professor of politics at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn. “People are starting to feel promises were not fulfilled. Expectations were high, but what have we really seen?” Clifford Young, a pollster for Ipsos Public Affairs, sees a normal turn against the party in power, saying the Democrats overstated the significance of the 2008 election results. “It was basically an election for change, so it favored the party out of power,”Young said. “But it didn’t say anything about a major shift in values. We didn’t see a huge shift in values that would favor the Democrats in the long term.” Either way, the Democratic Party’s push to build a durable political majority is stalling. That’s evident in national polls, such as a recent Gallup survey that found an average of 49 percent of Americans calling themselves Democrats last year, the first time in four years that the party has dropped below the majority level. That was still better than the Republicans, but the Democratic edge was shrinking, not growing. It’s also clear in battleground states. Colorado, for example, was one of the places Democrats highlighted as proof that they were gaining support in swing states, as well as in regions such as the Mountain West,
that once were friendlier to Republicans. The Democratic National Committee held its 2008 convention in Denver to showcase the successes. Ritter stumbled in office, however, and voters have turned on other Democrats and him. Polls also suggest that Sen. Michael Bennet, DColo., is at risk of losing his bid for re-election. One reason, Denver pollster Floyd Ciruli said, is that voters are weary of the recession and blame the party in power. Another is that they don’t like the Democratic proposals to overhaul health care, a plan that he said had energized Republicans and turned off independent voters. “The collapse of Colorado ... demonstrates the immense shift that has taken place over the last year in the fortunes of national Democrats and the impact it’s had on this swing state,” Ciruli said. Colorado isn’t the only state in which Democrats have lost support among independents. see Democrats, page 5
The charts show the current balance of power in the House and Senate above a table that portrays the number of members leaving Congress at the end of 2010.
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Thursday, January 7, 2010
Judge favors broadcasting upcoming federal trial over same-sex marriage Maura Dolan los angeles times
SAN FRANCISCO — A federal judge in San Francisco said Wednesday that he wants the federal trial over the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8 to be videotaped and distributed over the Internet. “This certainly is a case that has sparked widespread interest,” U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn R. Walker said during a hearing Wednesday. The nature of the case and its importance warranted “widespread distribution,” he said. If Walker’s view is endorsed, as expected, by the chief judge of 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the legal battle over same-sex marriage will become the first federal trial
in nine Western states to be videotaped in its entirety for public viewing, according to Thomas Burke, a media attorney. “It is a rare day and a lot of decades in coming that a federal court allows cameras in the court — even its own cameras,” Burke said. In addition to running the entire proceedings on YouTube hours after they occur, the court videotape would be broadcast live at several other federal courthouses, Walker said. Supporters of Proposition 8 opposed public dissemination of the trial video and argued that witnesses would be intimidated by having their testimony watched by millions of people. The Proposition 8 campaign also objected to live feeds at other courthouses. Walker noted many of the cam-
paign’s experts who will testify are “academics — people who stand up before classrooms all the time.” But Michael Kirk, representing the campaign, said a classroom talk was substantially different from being asked “to testify across the county and across the world” in a “contentious and highly politicized” case. Kirk said that supporters of Proposition 8 have been harassed. “The risk is just unacceptable,” he said. Kirk later refused to say whether the campaign would ask a higher court to overturn Walker’s decision. Opponents of Proposition 8 favored courtroom cameras. Theodore Boutrous, a lawyer for two same-sex couples who have challenged the measure, told Walker the videos should be released to the public “as close to simultaneously as
possible.” “What happens in the courtroom is public property,” Boutrous said. Burke, representing a media coalition, asked Walker to permit a professional media company to broadcast and provide the public “instantaneous access.” Walker rejected that request. He said it was important for the “process to be completely under the court’s control.” The judge said he would be able to stop the video at any time. Although the members of the media did not get what they wanted, Burke called Walker’s decision “historic” and “a really important first step” to televising federal trials. The trial is scheduled to start Monday and is expected to last two to three weeks. Walker’s decision on
Proposition 8’s constitutionality is expected to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. The California Supreme Court already has upheld Proposition 8 as a valid amendment of the state constitution. The federal case is based on federal constitutional challenges. The videotaping of the trial is part of a pilot project launched by the 9th Circuit last month. The Judicial Council of the 9th Circuit, the governing body for federal courts in the West, approved the use of cameras in civil, non-jury cases on an experimental basis. “We hope that being able to see and hear what transpires in the courtroom will lead to a better public understanding of our judicial processes and enhanced confidence in the rule of law,” 9th Circuit Chief Alex Kozinsky said when he an-
RNC chairman criticized for remark
Republican National Committee (RNC) chairman Michael Steele attends a post-election news conference in Washington on November 4, 2009. He has come under fire for his use of the word ‘injun.’
Dawn Turner Trice chicago tribune
CHICAGO — Some consider the word “injun” to be as offensive as the N-word, but apparently Republican National Chairman Michael Steele didn’t know that when he tried to underscore a point earlier this week by saying, “Honest injun on that.” Steele was on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show Monday night promoting his new book, “Right Now: A 12-Step Program for Defeating the Obama Agenda.”
“Our platform is one of the best political documents that’s been written in the last 25 years,” Steele told Hannity. “Honest injun on that. It speaks to some core conservative principles on the value of family, faith, life, economics.Those principles don’t change.” Susan Power, 85, the last living founding member of Chicago’s American Indian Center, said she was offended by Steele’s comment. see Remark, page 5
Suicide bombing in Russia’s Dagestan kills 5 police officers Megan K. Stack los angeles times
MOSCOW — A suicide bomber targeted a traffic police headquarters in the restive Russian republic of Dagestan on Wednesday morning, killing five officers and injuring 19 more. As the small, Russian-made SUV careened toward the building at about 8 a.m., a team of police rammed their truck into the bomber’s vehicle. The explosives went off on impact, killing all of the policemen in the truck but preventing the bomber from reaching his target. The death toll would have been much higher had the officers not intervened, officials in Dagestan said. The men were being hailed as heroes. “He was stopped by a special operations group at the last minute,” an unnamed spokesman told Interfax. “The measures taken by these policemen stopped the terrorist from reaching the site where other police officers prepared for duty.” The bomber struck just as 50 traffic policemen were lining up at the headquarters for a procession. In choice of target and timing, the attack bore a marked resemblance to last summer’s bombing of a police headquarters in nearby Ingushetia, another Russian republic racked by insurgent violence. That attack killed at least 24 people. “They managed to prevent a terrorist attack with a higher death toll at the cost of their own lives,” the spokesman said. Dagestan, a mountainous republic tucked on the western edge of the Caspian Sea, is an ethnically diverse and oil-rich region that has been rent by tensions from rising Islamism and
Remark continued from page 4
“I’m really disgusted with him,” said Power, a longtime activist and member of the Dakota nation. “He’s an intelligent man and I know he’s probably kicking himself all over his office for saying it, but he should know better. It would hurt if he were white, but it hurts more because he’s black. How can you be so stupid?” She said that “injun” is one of two words — the other is “squaw” — that should never be used because they are throwbacks to a time when Native Americans were defined almost exclusively by negative stereotypes. “Are we so unimportant that he couldn’t have caught himself?” she said. “I would never use the N-word. I know not to. This man must know nothing about native people. That’s what’s so hard about this. Native Americans know everything about everybody else, but there’s so little interest in knowing who we are.” Power said that Steele needs to make amends.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
clan power struggles. Wednesday’s explosion shattered windows and damaged roofs for more than a mile around. Investigators poring over the bomb crater concluded that the assailant had been carrying artillery shells equivalent to more than 200 pounds of TNT. “When I woke up, ‘Bam! Bam!’ “ neighbor Patimat Aliyeva told Russia 1 television, imitating the sound of the blast. “I couldn’t find my children. They were screaming, ‘Mama.’ But I didn’t see them because the house is filled with dust and there’s glass under my feet.” Mukhu Aliyev, the president of the small republic, ordered budget funds set aside to compensate the families of the slain police. He also ordered the purchase of 15 new police vehicles. Escalating bloodshed in the Caucasus has remained a soft and volatile underbelly to Russian efforts to portray the country as a stable, centrally controlled hub of investment and tranquillity. Russian officials have threatened, denied and fired officials and vowed to do better in response to the string of attacks — but the bloodshed keeps coming. A flare of disappearances and killings in Chechnya, which suffered through two wars between 1994 and the early 2000s, and a swelling Islamist rebellion and raging clan warfare in Ingushetia and Dagestan all threaten to destabilize Russia. The threat appeared particularly acute in November, when a bomb derailed a train on a popular route running between Moscow and St. Petersburg, killing 26 people and raising the possibility that violence would spill deep into the heart of Russia. “I don’t think he did it on purpose,” she said. “But now that he does know, he should apologize.” The Republican National Committee did not respond Wednesday to the Chicago Tribune’s inquiries about Steele’s comment.
VENTURA (MCT) — An environmental group has taken the first step in filing a lawsuit against the city of Ventura, claiming it does not adequately treat the effluent it dumps into the Santa Clara River estuary. “Decades of paying the minimum penalty to pollute as a cost of conducting business, instead of implementing feasible solutions to safeguard public health, resident well-being, the steelhead, and the Santa Clara River ecosystem” must stop in favor of government action to protect the public interest for current and future generations, said Jason Weiner,Ventura Coastkeeper’s associate director and staff attorney, in a press release. The city has a permit to put about 9 million gallons of effluent it treats at the nearby sewage facility into the estuary. It is one of the few places in the state with a permit to discharge into an estuary.
DETROIT (MCT) — A federal grand jury in Detroit indicted Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab Wednesday in the Christmas Day terror attack on a Detroit-bound airliner. Abdulmutallab was charged with six counts: attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction, attempted murder within the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States, willful attempt to destroy and wreck an aircraft within the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States, willfully placing a destructive device on an aircraft and two counts possession of a destructive device in furtherance of a crime of violence. The attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction charge is punishable by up to life in prison.
HILLAH, Iraq (MCT) — Dazed and blood-spattered, an Iraqi woman stumbled among the bodies of her relatives Wednesday on a strip of highway south of Baghdad where a U.S. military convoy had struck a passenger van in a deadly accident. Badriya Hussein whispered prayers over the blanket-covered bodies and then looked at the stricken American soldiers standing nearby. “Why?” she asked. “Why?” Iraqi forces and witnesses at the scene said the U.S. convoy was driving in the wrong lane when the vehicles collided, killing five members of one family and injuring seven more Iraqis and three American soldiers.
LOS ANGELES (MCT) — A 51-year-old contract worker convicted of accidentally touching off a wildfire on Catalina Island in 2007 was ordered Wednesday to pay nearly $12 million in restitution. The hefty financial wallop is in addition to $4 million in restitution that Gary Dennis Hunt was ordered to pay at his first restitution hearing last summer.
Democrats continued from page 3
won both U.S. Senate seats in recent years and then took the state in the presidential race for the first time since 1964, they’ll have to watch from the bleachers when Republican Bob McDonnell is inaugurated Jan. 16. He won the seat in November in large part because independent voters turned against the Democrats, who’d held the governor’s office for two terms. Republicans also took back the governor’s of-
LONDON (MCT) — Northern Ireland’s largest Protestant paramilitary group announced Wednesday that it had finally surrendered all of its weapons, more than a decade after the historic Good Friday Agreement formally ended violent sectarian struggle in the province. Independent monitors confirmed that the Ulster Defense Association’s arsenal of guns and bombs had been put out of commission, meaning that the main armed organizations on both sides of the loyalist-republican divide have been disarmed. The step was hailed as a milestone by the British government, which had imposed a Feb. 9 deadline.
fice in New Jersey. If health care hurt Democrats in Colorado, it also could damage several Democratic senators elsewhere. In at least seven states in which Democratic senators now hold seats, opponents of the Democratic health care proposals tend to outnumber supporters. In North Dakota, where Sen. Byron Dorgan shocked supporters Tuesday by announcing that he wouldn’t seek re-election, one poll found the state’s likely voters opposing the health care proposal by 2-1 — and Dorgan trailing Re-
publican Gov. John Hoeven by 22 percentage points. In Arkansas, Sen. Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., is facing a difficult re-election campaign and reluctantly became the last, crucial vote needed to allow senators to continue the health care debate this fall. “Arkansans are not yet sold on the need for health care reform,” warned Janine Parry, the director of the Arkansas Poll. While uninsured people are interested in the issue, she said, “The rest of us, apparently, are afraid of losing what we’ve got.”
MIAMI (MCT) — It was a landmark year, good and bad, for Florida manatees. The endangered mammals suffered the deadliest year on record in 2009 as state wildlife biologists documented 429 fatalities, a mark boosted by a trio of all-time highs for boat strikes (97), newborns (114) and cold stress (56). The totals, announced by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on Wednesday, ended a year that started brightly with an annual aerial survey tallying 3,807 manatees, which topped the previous all-time high by 500.
thursday, january 7, 2010
arts & Entertainment editor: cassandra keyse
Veritas Forum comes to campus searching for truth Zach Lantz mustang daily
The Veritas Forum returns to Cal Poly next week; event organizers said the event will inspire discussion around issues like truth, life and religion. The annual event has been at Cal Poly since 2007. The Veritas Forum, which gets its name from the Latin word for truth, brings in educated speakers from all walks of life to pose their theories and questions to students to be scrutinized and examined. Aerospace junior and Veritas Forum club president Josh Ceccarelli said that Veritas has earned an honest reputation when it comes to life’s deepest questions. “Students from any worldview and any kind of background in general can just come and have discussions on what it means to live a true life and gives them the chance to pursue some of that knowledge,” he said. “There are so many difficult questions out there and (at Veritas Forum) those questions can be discussed in a safe, intelligent environment.” Discussion topics will range from an art exhibit to an origin of life debate, and will also include a documentary on modern-day slavery. After each event, audience members will have the opportunity to learn more in a 45-minute question-and-answer period. Ceccarelli said this would ensure fair discussion. Monday will feature an art
Theater performance portrays hardships of job-searching Daniel Triassi mustang daily
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Veritas Forum volunteers pass out flyers Wednesday on Dexter Lawn. The event begins on Monday and lasts all week. exhibit titled “Exploring Truth through Art” in which art will be submitted by current or former Cal Poly student. Tuesday will feature a presentation by Kelly Monroe Kullberg titled “Finding God beyond Harvard.” Kullberg is the founder and director of project development of The Veritas Forum, which she first organized as a graduate student at Harvard in 1992, according to the Veritas Web site. She also coauthored the best-selling “Finding God at Harvard: Spiritual Journeys of Christian Thinkers.” A creationist, assisted evolutionist and atheistic evolution-
ist will debate the origin of life Wednesday. “In the past, when we’ve had a creationism versus evolution debate, I haven’t really liked them because I think there is more of a spectrum of what people believe. I think it’s important to talk about that spectrum in a discussion,” said Chelsea Morrell, biomedical engineering senior and Veritas Forum vice president. “Instead of there is a God or there is no God and maybe he is (involved) in parts of evolution or not at all.” All three speakers are profes-
Sitting behind a nondescript office desk, the actress sighs, “Last count I’ve had 64 jobs. Now, I’m not 236 years old, so obviously some of them were for unusually short durations.” So begins the opening scene of Melanie Marshall’s senior project performance of “Blown Sideways Through Life,” an autobiographical play by Claudia Shear, which debuts tonight in room 212 of the H.P. Davidson Music Center. “Blown Sideways Through Life” chronicles Shear’s life as an unstable employee. Shear’s résumé includes being an artist’s model, receptionist at a whorehouse, Bloomingdale’s sales associate and waitress at a restaurant called Bar Louis; all in search for an identity more sincere than any job description. Both Marshall’s parents were actors, so in a way she was literally
born to perform. At three months old, she was cast in her first diaper commercial. Marshall eventually was cut out of the commercial for crying too much, her first unsuccessful brush with show business. At seven years old, she began taking her first acting classes. “My parents would pull me out of elementary school, especially six months before elections, because I was doing a lot of commercials (for ballot propositions),” she said. “(People would call asking for) ‘students for the background,’ and I was like, ‘I’m in!’” Although Marshall realized her passion for theatre early on, many Cal Poly students aren’t as fortunate. Students end up switching majors because they must declare their intent when they are 18, Marshall said. “I think that something this show really says is that you should find what you like to do, but you see Show, page 8
see Veritas, page 2
daniel triassi mustang daily
Melanie Marshall plays Claudia Shear in the autobiographical onewoman-play “Blown Sideways Through Life.”
Thursday, January 7, 2010 www.mustangdaily.net
Arts editor: Cassandra Keyse firstname.lastname@example.org
beer column Last year saw record Celebrate the new year with a music sales in U.S. pint of Celebration Ale
The Black Eyed Peas had two of four songs (“Boom Boom Pow” and “I Got a Feeling”) that broke 4 million sales in a single year. Todd Martens los angeles times
Overall U.S. music purchases hit an all-time-high in 2009, as sales of albums, singles, digital tracks and music videos topped 1.5 billion for the second consecutive year, according to year-end data released today from Nielsen SoundScan. Total music sales were up 2.1% over those of 2008, but the figures capture an industry still in transition. Album sales took another double-digit drop in 2009, down 12.7% to 373.9 million. Meanwhile, digital track sales reached another milestone, up 8.3% from 2008 to more than 1.1 billion in 2009. What’s more, Nielsen SoundScan reports that 89 digital songs exceeded the 1 million sales mark in 2009, compared with 71 songs in 2008, and 2009 marked the first time a song broke the 4 million sales mark in a single year. The latter was achieved by four singles -“Boom Boom Pow” and “I Got a Feeling” from the Black Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” and Flo Rida’s “Right Round.” More distressing for the industry, however, is the fact that the rate of growth has significantly slowed. Though overall music purchases set a record in 2009, the 2.1% increase is a fraction of the growth spurt the industry experienced in
2008. That year, overall music purchased jumped more than 10%, up from 1.3 billion to 1.5 billion, and digital track sales experienced a major 27% increase. Additionally, although digital album sales were up 16% in 2009 to 76.4 million, they shot up 32% in 2008. Digital music accounted for 40% of all music purchases in 2009, up from 32% in 2008. Digital album sales, meanwhile, made up 20% of total album sales in 2009. In 2008, digital album sales accounted for 15% of total album sales. An approximate 5% growth rate is consistent going back to 2006. Vinyl continued to be an industry bright spot, although overall vinyl sales are minuscule in the grand scheme of the industry. Sales of vinyl were up 33% in 2009 to 2.5 million, a new vinyl record. Though vinyl has seen a resurgence in recent years, there are signs that even that market is maturing. For instance, vinyl sales experienced a nearly 90% increase in 2008. Retailers also took a hit in 2009. Sales at mass merchants accounted for 36% of all album sales, down 1% in 2008. This is, however, the third year in a row that sales fell at mass merchants. Nielsen SoundScan reported last year that mass retailers experienced year-to-year growth from 2002 to 2006. Elsewhere, chain outlets comprised see Music, page 8
www.mustangdaily.net Always in color
Hoppy New Year! Get it? Hoppy? Yes, well anyway, welcome back to another exciting quarter at Cal Poly. Now, I don’t usually have a New Year’s resolution, and of course when I do I rarely follow it, but this year is different. I have resolved to try at least one new beer every week of the quarter and then share my experiences with you, the reader of this article. Sounds awesome, right? But wait,there’s more! Not only will you be able to taste vicariously through me, but I will also teach you a little about each beer and style I try. I’ll be touring the local breweries and letting you know what is going on in the beer world. Before all that, though, if you were like I was last year, or if this is your first year at Poly, you’re probably wondering what justification there is for letting a column about beer into a respectable publication such as this. How could it be at all important? I’ve put together a list of seven fun facts about beer — fun facts that would be perfect to whip out at a party, or to use in order to convince your parents that beer is really OK to consume three or four or seven nights a week. These are just a few of the reasons why beer is worthy of being written about: 1. Beer is the oldest, most popular beverage on earth (possibly dating back to the 6th millennium B.C.). 2. In ancient Babylonia, beer was brewed by priestesses, and some types were used in religious ceremonies (Babylonian gods approve). 3. Monasteries were among the first organizations to brew beer as a trade (if it’s good enough for the monks, it’s good enough for me).
4. Saints Augustine, Luke and Nicholas are all patrons of brewing (Christian God approves). 5. I heard once on TV that the American people will elect the presidential candidate that they could “sit down and have a beer with.” (just like Nixon, oh, wait ...)
6. You may have been conceived with the help of beer (it doesn’t mean they don’t love you). 7. Beer makers were among the first to feature minorities in their television commercials (blazing trails for equality). If these don’t convince you that this column is worthy, then how about this:They let that other dude talk about pube-shaving and that conservative fellow hate on everything that isn’t God. It’s only fair. Also, as this is the first article, I’ll give you a little more knowledge about beer, namely a brief description of how it is made and the different types. First off, all beer contains water, hops, yeast and some sort of starch, usually malted grain. Many beers also have a clarifying agent that clumps together the solids from the brewing process for removal. The two main types of beer are lagers and ales. Lagers are brewed at lower temperatures using slowacting yeast, while ales are brewed at high temperatures with fast-acting yeast. Lagers are crisper and lighter than ales and encompass most of the more popular U.S. beers, such
as those produced by Budweiser, Miller, Coors and (I do hate to mention it) Pabst Blue Ribbon. Ales are more often local-styles, which for us include Firestone, almost any local brewery and most beers by Sierra Nevada. Speaking of which, this week’s beer selection is Sierra Nevada’s Celebration Ale. According to Sierra Nevada’s site, the Celebration Ale is “Wonderfully robust and rich … dryhopped for a lively, intense a r o m a .” Intense is a great descr iption of this beer. It is e x t re m e l y hoppy and if you enjoy a flavorful beer, I highly recommend it. The “intense” hoppy flavor is from the process of dry-hopping, which is when the hops are added to the wort (the sugary liquid that the yeast ferments into beer) after it is boiled, thus allowing the hoppy flavor to be much more prominent in the final product. In order to give you a better idea of what the beer is like, I’ve decided to do a side-by-side comparison with their quite popular pale ale. If you couldn’t tell by now, I’m no beer professional, but I’ll try and describe these brews from a layman’s perspective. Obviously the Celebration is much “hoppier” than the ale. But hey, when beer’s hoppy, I’m hoppy! Get it? Eh, never mind. In appearance, the Celebration is a slightly darker amber and a bit cloudier. The Celebration is more bitter than the pale ale. Don’t let this discourage you, though. It isn’t the bad bitter that Coors was battling against with its “Bitter Beer Face” advertising campaign; it is a delicious bitter to accompany a full flavor. This is a great IPA (indian pale see Beer, page 8
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ale) seasonal beer to go out and try. And if you like it, look for other IPAs, like Firestone’s Union Jack IPA or the many, many others that can be found at our local liquor stores. Next week, along with the general beer talk, I’ll be sampling an undetermined pilsner, a pale lager style beer, for those of you who prefer to stay away from the ales and darker beers. From there, I’ll make my way to the darker side of beers, ending with a porter, which happens to be my favorite style of beer. If you too are a lover of beer, which you must be if you made it this far, I encourage you to try the beers I do and let me know what you think by commenting on the posted article at mustangdaily.net. Well, as we near the end of the beginning, I want to leave you with a few final thoughts. I would like to thank the Internet, Wikipedia. org specifically, for furthering my knowledge about beer. Also, as Montell Jordan does on Friday nights when he feels alright, and the party is here on the west side, if you’re going to drink, then be responsible: “So I reach for my 40 and I turn it up, designate a driver take the keys to my truck.��� And finally, if you’re under 21 years of age, please do not read this article, for I do not want to be the cause of temptation to break civil and moral law.
29% of all album sales, compared with 33% in 2008, and independent retailers amounted to 6% of overall album sales, down 1% from in 2008. Customers also stuck with the familiar. The top-selling album of 2009, Taylor Swift’s “Fearless,” was one that was released in 2008. Of 2009’s top five sellers, only Susan Boyle and Andrea Bocelli released their albums in 2009, and both benefited from holiday-timed release dates. Though Swift’s “Fearless” was 2009’s top-seller, it didn’t take that title by much. The album tallied 3.2 million sales, just 100,000 more than Susan Boyle’s “I Dreamed A Dream.” Boyle can boast that her “Dream” was the best-selling album that was released in 2009, and was the year’s top-selling “Internet album.” The latter denotes that it sold the most physical copies from digital retailers (405,000), as opposed to digital downloads. Swift was 2008’s top-selling artist, and she would have repeated this year were it not for the sudden death of Michael Jackson. The King of Pop racked up a total of 8.2 million album sales in 2009, significantly more than Swift’s 4.6 million. But Swift was still on the rise. Last year, she sold slightly more than 4 million copies. Jackson’s “Number Ones” was the year’s third-best album with 2.3 million sold. The year’s other top-selling albums were as follows: Lady Gaga’s “The
Adam Plachta is a business administration senior and Mustang Daily’s new beer columnist. “Beer Me” will run every Thursday.
Veritas continued from page 6
at different universities; the forum’s organizers wanted to feature people of similar scientific backgrounds and intellectual levels. A documentary titled “Call and Response” will be shown in Chumash Auditorium at 8:45 p.m. on Thursday. The documentary aims to inform that “there are more slaves today than ever in human history” according to the Veritas Web site. The documentary spans from India to Cambodia portray-
ing modern-day slavery like child brothels and slave brick kilns. “A lot of people will say this shouldn’t be happening, but then it’s like what do we do about it?” Ceccarelli said. The last presentation of the week is a speech is titled “Why Does a Good God Allow Suffering?” that will be given by Greg Jesson, Ph.D. Computer engineering senior and Cal Poly Brights club president Nichola Utschig said that students will probably want to debate the topic all night. “It’s a lot of fun, and that’s always a good debating topic, and I
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Fame” (2.2 million), Bocelli’s “My Christmas” (2.2 million), “Hannah Montana: The Movie” soundtrack (1.8 million), Black Eyed Peas’ “The E.N.D.” (1.78 million), Eminem’s “Relapse” (1.73 million), Jay-Z’s “The Blueprint 3” (1.5 million) and Kings of Leon’s “Only By the Night” (1.39 million). After Jackson and Swift, the Beatles were 2009’s top-selling artist, moving more than 3.28 million total units and benefiting from the much-hyped re-release of its catalog. Rounding out the year’s top-10 selling artists were Boyle (3.1 million), Lady Gaga (2.8 million), Bocelli (2.6 million), Michael Buble (2.28 million), Eminem (2.1 million), Carrie Underwood (1.8 million) and the Black Eyed Peas (1.88 million). Fashion-conscious pop star Lady Gaga was the year’s topselling digital artist. She sold more than 15 million tracks in 2009. Last year, Rihanna won the honor, having sold more than 9.9 million tracks. Lady Gaga’s “The Fame” was the top-selling digital album of the year, moving 461,000 downloads. On the airplay front, Swift’s “You Belong to Me” and “Love Story” were the two mostplayed songs of 2009, according to Nielsen BDS. “You Belong to Me” was also the most streamed song over the Internet, accruing more than 10 million listenings. But Kanye West may be pleased to know that Beyonce’s “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)” was the most-streamed video of the year (3.2 million), topping Swift’s “Love Story” by 1 million.
expect the questions to run long past (the allotted) time on that topic,” he added. “It’s a novel question that’s been going on for centuries.” All events are open to the public. At the documentary showing, priority will be given to students. Although the event promises to draw strong opinions, organizers said it will be a positive learning experience for all. “It’s not something where different religions are going to be pushed or different ideas are going to be proven right or wrong but just a place where dialogue can be had,” Ceccarelli said.
Show continued from page 8
shouldn’t be expected to know what that is right away,” she said. “That it’s okay to try things that don’t work out and fail.” “Blown Sideways Through Life” is also an honest look at the life many of us live. During and after college, many people have jobs, not careers, working to make money necessary to live. A job has minimal impact on a future work life, while a career provides experience and learning to fuel one’s future. Shear makes no apologies for the meandering work path she has chosen. Marshall instead retells Shear’s seemingly menial jobs with dignity and insightful humor. “We all need jobs, and they’re not there. I think this play explores what we are willing to sacrifice to keep the job we need. How much of yourself are we willing to put away and smile with sand and shit in your mouth to have this job that sustains your livelihood and when is it just not worth it?” Marshall said. One lesson the playwright has learned from all those dead-end jobs is that nobody is just a busboy or just a cashier; everyone has “at least one story that will stop your heart.” Following the play’s rehearsal, senior theater major Ashley Merchak was drawn to the minimalism and the strong word choice fit for a monologue. “The simplicity and bareness of the stage enables a stronger audience connection, focusing your attention more on her words than the scenery,” Merchak said.
On stage, Marshall emphasizes self-empowerment. Through Shear’s voice, she finds joy in her everyday jobs. Theater assistant professor Virginia Anderson agrees the message is less about the visual aspects of the play and more about finding yourself through what you do and despite what you do. “(The show is) a wonderful opportunity to share in the work of someone who, even in the thick of the college experience, allows us to genuinely celebrate what comes next,” Anderson said. Marshall holds the stage, and our attention, for 45 minutes, and her energy and commitment to Shear’s storyline never wanes. “Blown Sideways Through Life” will begin at 7 p.m. tonight and will run until Saturday. Tickets are available for $5 by phone: (916) 803-4530, email: email@example.com and a select few at the door.
Not Your Grandma’s Coupons!
opinion/editorial Thursday, January 7, 2010
Editor in chief: Emilie Egger Managing Editor: Alex Kacik
mustang daily The voice of Cal Poly since 1916
Democrats need to adjust strategy to win in 2010 It’s been almost a year since President Obama took office, and almost a quarter of his first term has passed. But for better or worse, we also wave goodbye to a decade. Some are calling it “The Decade from Hell”— and perhaps rightly so. Whatever your politics, the period from 2000-2009 was certainly littered with difficult issues and controversies, which will flow into the upcoming election season. The beginning of the previous decade and the Bush administration brought a new economic policy of trickle-down economics and deregulation, which led to the financial crisis we face today. Arguably, as a result of the Republicans’ mishandling of the recession and the economy, and the Bush administration’s neglect toward disasters like Hurricane Katrina and mishandling of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, President Obama became the first black President of the United States. The election of the first black President may not have changed the treatment of every minority in the United States or changed the
hearts of racists, but the clear departure from the stain of discrimination on American history is certainly a milestone. However, when I reflect on 2009, which brought so much hope and promise in the sweeping, ambitious agenda of Barack Obama, I don’t see it as the year of change that I thought I would. Nor do I view the actions of the Democratic Party — health care reform included — as reasons to celebrate. 2009 was dominated by the voices of the far right, despite the fact that Democrats currently control
all three branches of government. This is mostly because, as Washington Post’s Harold Meyerson said in his Wednesday opinion piece, the conservatives managed to scrape together something liberals weren’t able to: a social movement. The Tea Partiers, led by FOX News’s Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity, as well as Rush Limbaugh, are doing their politicians’ work to deconstruct the previously untouchable image of President Obama, and paint the Democrats as weak. And, to some extent, I agree with that assessment of Democrats. The Democrats,
limited government. What they don’t understand is that the reason they lost the 2008 election is that Americans correctly identified those same conservative principles as the cause of the recession. However, Democrats may lose the 2010 midterm elections for the opposite reason. If Democrats fail to adhere to their agenda of real health care reform including the public option, and if they do nothing to significantly lower the unemployment rate which is currently around 10 percent (new numbers, which are projected to be more hopeful come out Friday), they deserve to lose Senate and House seats. Referring to the pundit and media response to the attempted al-Qaeda attack on Christmas Day, New York Times columnist David Brooks said last Friday on PBS’s News Hour, “We should have some sort of steady, levelheaded response. That is the sign of a resilient nation. We don’t have it. We have had the last week of the whole country going — or at least the punditocracy — going into semi-hysteria over this. And it’s just not the sign of a serious country.” I think David Brooks’
Presid e n t Obama included, have been far too lenient toward their Republican counterparts. I believe in the ideal of compromise and reaching across the aisle to include the best ideas into a bill, but in cases in which people’s lives depend on bold legislation, which stands in ideological opposition to the Republican Party — such as in health care reform — there’s no room for compromise. And Senate Democrats certainly compromised not just their objectives but their values in their version of the health reform bill. The argument that Republicans will make this 2010 election season is that they have learned their lesson and will again adhere to their core principles of low taxes and
mo ro d e p
statem e n t applies to several aspects of American politics — not just the reactions of the punditocracy, in the sense that much of what pervades American politics today is absurdity. This problem stems from an unhealthy emphasis on party beliefs rather than a concern for sound ideas and legislation. If Democrats want to retain their legitimacy with the American people, they need to fight for the middle and lower class again and take control of public discourse by seriously acting on their campaign promises. Stephanie England is an English senior and Mustang Daily political columnist.
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the NFL blueprint work. Alabama is an NFL team without a salary cap. It was built from scratch, on a cinder block. The Tide rolls by running the ball and stopping the run. The Tide won three games this year without quarterback Greg McElroy throwing for a touchdown.
“You want to make things simple for the players,” Saban said Wednesday. Ask Alabama senior nose guard Terrence Cody what it’s like to allow an opposing runner 100 yards and he couldn’t tell you, it hasn’t happened in his two seasons. Alabama isn’t a Hollywood’s
things can happen, interceptions, fumbles, kick returns, safeties. OK, let’s make it 16-15, or 1817 or 21-19. Let’s say Texas wins but not believe it. Maybe fate can carry the night for Texas. Or maybe it will be Alabama, as a matter of facts.
mustangdaily.net y always something new.
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In Texas’ last bout in the Rose Bowl, Vince Young led the Longhorns to a 41-38 victory in the National Championship game in 2005.
“Lean on Me;” it’s “Lean on You.” You side with the Crimson Tide because it will erode Texas. It is the hungrier “organization,” having not won a national title in 17 years. Alabama is still fed up over last season, when it was No. 1 before closing with losses to Florida in the Southeastern Conference title game and Utah in the Sugar Bowl. The Utah loss was a rude awakening. “We looked at a Utah team, and we were like, ‘it’s Utah,’ and we weren’t really ready to play,” AllAmerican linebacker Rolando McClain conceded. Alabama vowed it would never happen again. Texas or Alabama, so which is it going to be? The odds favor Alabama and a kicker being named MVP. The big fear is the two offenses won’t combine for 100 ... yards. What’s it going to sound like when Alabama’s Heisman winner, Mark Ingram, hits a Texas chain saw defense that allows a nation-low 62 rushing yards per game? When you crunch all the backof-jersey numbers, what gives? Texas has some nerve taking that shaky running game against an Alabama defense that tolerates 11 points a game. Moving Alabama’s defensive front is as tough as airlifting an elephant. Nebraska’s Ndamukong Suh, by himself, blew up Texas’ offensive game plan in the Big 12 title game, and Alabama’s defense is probably better. So what are we looking at here ... 3-0? Probably not, because crazy
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It was on this stage five years ago where the Longhorns came of new age as a program. Brown said Texas’ victory over Michigan in the 2005 Rose Bowl game “validated that we were going to be around awhile.” Alabama (13-0) will win the national championship because it’s the better team, and anyone who thinks fate is involved probably believes in flying saucers and sorcery. Football games aren’t won with inspiring pregame speeches or because “wouldn’t it be neat if Colt McCoy won four years after Vince Young?” Football games are won when gigantic men and serious coaches implement meticulous plans. Alabama Coach Nick Saban is king of “you’ve got to go through your checklist.” Saban doesn’t care if you like him he may not fancy himself. Disneyland to him is “clutter,” and that goes for three of the seven dwarfs. Saban’s idea of fun would be putting barbed wire up around the practice field. High-strung Urban Meyer very briefly resigned from Florida to take care of his health and spend more quality time at home. Saban fits the mock headline once suggested for workaholic Tom Coughlin: “Coach quits family to spend more time with team.” What Saban has done successfully in Tuscaloosa is what he didn’t do for the Miami Dolphins: make
Thursday, January 7, 2010
mustangdaily.net Thursday, January 7, 2010
sports editor: Brian De Los Santos
Mustangs hope to stay undefeated in conference mustang daily staff report
The Mustangs have 19 wins to show for their past two seasons. Last season alone, Pacific notched 21 wins en route to the Big West conference tournament championship — a milestone Cal Poly hasn’t reached since the 20052006 season. Cal Poly has reached the championship twice but hasn’t tasted a Big West championship victory in its 13 years in the conference. This Friday, Cal Poly (4-8, 1-0 Big West) will host Pacific (8-5, 1-0 Big West) in a Big West hardwood showdown in Mott Gym. The Mustangs look to build off their first Big West win and Pacific looks to build off a career performance by senior forward Joe Ford, in a 52-43 win against Cal State Northridge to open its conference schedule. But Cal Poly senior guard Lorenzo Keeler is coming off the game of his life as well, putting up 38 to lift the Mustangs over UC Irvine, 95-81, Monday night. His backcourt teammate Kyle Odister added 23 points, a season high for the freshman. In their first season under new head coach Joe Callero, the Mustangs posted a 0-5 record to start the season on a five-game road trip. Cal Poly streaked with three-consecutive wins following the winless drought, but was silenced by another skid, losing three games that started with a 90-42 loss to Big Ten powerhouse Wisconsin. Big West conference play is its
ryan sidarto mustang daily file photo
After recording a 3-8 record in its early season schedule, Cal Poly kicked off conference play with a win against UC Irvine. The Mustangs will play conference games against Pacific and UC Davis this weekend. shot at turning its losing record around. In its first of two conference games this weekend, the second coming in a game against UC Davis Sunday, Cal Poly will battle a team averages 62.8 points per
game but has lost its last three of four contests. Pacific streaked to seven wins out of the gates of the 2009-10 campaign, but since then has dropped five of its last eight games. Forward Sam Willard, who is
averaging 10.5 points and 7.8 rebounds per game, leads the Tigers on the offensive end. Behind him, guard Terrell Smith is averaging 8.7 points per game and center Michael Nunnally posts 8.2 points per game.
Ford adds 6.5 points per game and has been tagged as one of the most versatile players in the Big West. He leads the team in steals (13), blocked shots (14) and field goal percentage (66.7). “Joe is an energetic guy that can play point or the three spot and he helps us in so many ways,” head coach Bob Thomason said on the Tigers athletic Web site. “Joe brings us energy and activeness right as the game starts every night. I think that Joe should be a starter for us either at the one spot or the three spot.” Top-scoring accolades for the Mustangs fall on the shoulders of Keeler. On the season, Keeler boasts a 14.7 points per game average. Odister, who was not in the starting line-up to begin the season, will carry his momentum and hot hand into Mott Gym, hitting 48.8 percent from downtown on the season. “Kyle has a great perimeter shot,” Cal Poly head coach Joe Callero said in a release. “(He) continues to mature and late in the game, he helped seal the victory (against UC Irvine).” Sophomore center Will Donahue is the only other Mustang to have a double-digit point per game average. Donahue is averaging 11.8 rebounds per game to pair with 8.8 rebounds per game, but he has failed to see playing time in his past two games. Tip-off is set for 7 Friday night.
At the end of the day, the national title game is up for grabs Chris Dufresne los angeles times
LOS ANGELES — Texas will win the national championship because, in La-La land, people like scripts that come full circle, having their fortunes told and Jupiter aligned with Mars. There are too many coincidences to think it can go any other way, at least that’s what the palm reader said. Four years ago, at the Rose Bowl, Texas defeated USC to win the national title. Before trotting onto the field to lead Texas on the game-winning drive, quarterback Vince Young turned to a skinny redshirt freshman holding a clipboard and told
him to pay attention because he was going to be in this position someday. “Watch what I do,” Young told Colt McCoy. And then Young went out and won the game. Having paid close attention, McCoy has led Texas back to the national title game at the Rose Bowl. “I tried to soak that all in,” McCoy said this week. One thing McCoy learned: “Your team has to trust you. The team has to want the ball in your hands.” Young was 30-2 as Texas’ quarterback; McCoy is 45-7, 13-0 this season. “What both of them have done is given us a spark,” Texas Coach Mack Brown said. “They’ve given us the ‘it’ factor.” Another parallel: Young was inspired after losing the Heisman Trophy to USC running back Reggie Bush and got the chance to make his case against Bush’s team in the title game. This year, McCoy lost the Heisman Trophy to Alabama running back Mark Ingram and will get the chance to make his case against Ingram’s team in the title game. Texas will beat Alabama Thursday night because its coach also has the “it” factor, as in: He gets
Alabama running back Mark Ingram, above, will be the sixth player to yield the Heisman Trophy to play in that national title game. No winner since Matt Leinart won the award in 2004 has won the national title. it. Brown knows how to work the room and enjoy the festivities. His eloquent answer to Wednesday’s final news conference question, “When you’re not sleeping tonight, what will be racing through your mind?” was the before-game
football equivalent to Rockne’s halftime speech. On the awesome responsibility of setting the right tone with his players in the pregame meeting, Brown said: “I’ll have 122 sets of eyes looking at me.”
On what it means to be one of two schools, out of 120, to be on this stage: “You’re the best at what you do in the country and you’ve got 3 hours to prove it.” see Title, page 11