California Sun

Good morning. It's Monday, March 2.

Poll shows state's Democrats prefer socialism to capitalism.
Mass firing of striking graduate students at UC Santa Cruz.
And a gorgeous cove 20 minutes north of San Francisco.

California primary 2020


Bernie Sanders supporters listened to him speak in Los Angeles on Sunday.

Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images

There are 416 pledged delegates up for grabs in California tomorrow, the largest haul among 15 jurisdictions voting for a Democratic presidential nominee on Super Tuesday. It's a prize that Bernie Sanders — who holds a double-digit lead in the polls over his nearest rival, Joe Biden — is counting on to give him the momentum to clinch the nomination. "The candidate who wins here in California," the Vermont senator told a San Jose rally on Sunday, "will likely be the Democratic nominee." Washington Post | Mercury News


But there's at least a ray for hope for Biden. Many Californians have yet to cast ballots in early voting. Supporters of the former vice president hope undecided voters will be inspired by Biden's landslide win in South Carolina on Saturday. Moreover, the departure of Pete Buttigieg could send additional moderate votes Biden's way.

On Sunday, Biden pushed a theme he hoped would resonate with voters determined to oust President Trump: America just isn't ready for a self-proclaimed democratic socialist. The Hill | Politico

In California, however, the socialism label may not have the sting Biden would like. A poll showed that Democratic primary voters view socialism more favorably than capitalism. CBS News

Here are voter guides from CalMatters, the L.A. Times, and the S.F. Chronicle.




Health officials announced five additional coronavirus patients in the Bay Area, bringing the total confirmed cases in the nine-county region plus Sacramento to 25. At least three cases have involved patients who did not recently travel outside the United States or come in contact with someone who did, heightening fears that the virus was spreading in communities. S.F. Chronicle | Mercury News

Here's a regularly updated map showing every coronavirus case in California. S.F. Chronicle


People loaded up on goods at a Costco in Los Angeles on Saturday.

Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images

Many Californians spent the weekend panic-buying water and dry goods from Costcos. "We're going to have a lot of closures and casualties like in other countries," one L.A. shopper said. "It's not a matter of 'if' but 'when,' and I just want to be ready because when people panic and hit the shops, I'll be ready to go." L.A. Times | S.F. Chronicle

Here's video of people appearing to swarm crates of bottled water at an Orange County Costco. Reddit

Also: Catholic churches alter communion, a Chinatown rally denounces discrimination, and Costa Mesa dodges patients.




Inland areas like Bakersfield are among the areas hardest hit by the affordability crisis.

As California prepares to head to the polls, the state's yawning divide between the rich and poor will be on many voters' minds. In San Francisco, the average apartment rents for more than $4,000. Yet by one measure, the affordability crisis is even more severe in the Central Valley, where 38 percent of people pay more than 30 percent of their household income in rent. N.Y. Times

In the Bay Area city of Atherton, America's richest town, household income of half a million dollars is now below average. Bloomberg


When California lawmakers passed a bill in 2018 requiring that all public companies in the state include at least one woman on their boards, it was overwhelmingly opposed by corporate directors. But two years later, the quota appears to be working. "There was a perception when the law passed that there was a limited pool of qualified candidates," a governance expert said. "It doesn't seem to have been the case." Bloomberg


Northern California


UC Santa Cruz protesters faced off with law enforcement on Feb 12.

Dan Coyro/Santa Cruz Sentinel, via A.P.

UC Santa Cruz fired 54 graduate student workers who had been striking for higher pay. University leaders were angered by teaching assistants withholding undergraduate grades as a pressure tactic. "It is extremely disappointing to us that we have to take such a drastic step, but we ultimately cannot retain graduate students as teaching assistants who will not fulfill their responsibilities," a campus official said. Santa Cruz Sentinel | CNN


Paul Singer, a billionaire investor and prominent Republican donor, has taken a roughly $1 billion stake in Twitter and plans to push for ousting its chief executive, Jack Dorsey, reports said. But don't be tempted by theories that Singer is going after Dorsey for political reasons, recode said: "Singer and his team are motivated by money above all else." recode | The Guardian


There's a reason why people pay millions for homes overlooking Muir Beach, above. But they don't own the beach. Just a 20-minute drive from San Francisco, Muir Beach includes a sheltered cove and lagoon. When you've had your fill of sun and sea, you can plunge into the dark and dense world of Muir Woods, right next door. culture trip |


Southern California


Joe Coulombe at a Trader Joe's store in Huntington Beach in 1986.

John Blackmer/O.C. Register via Getty Images

Joe Coulombe died at 89. The founder of Trader Joe's, who was born in San Diego and lived on an avocado ranch in Del Mar, had a vision that college-educated but poorly paid young people would flock to a store that stocked healthy foods at bargain prices. He opened his first Trader Joe's in Pasadena in 1967. Today there are more than 500 stores. S.D. Union-Tribune | A.P.


Sheriff's deputies are being accused of sharing gruesome images from the Kobe Bryant crash site. One deputy, according to a citizen complaint, was showing the pictures at a bar. A lawyer for Bryant's widow reacted on Sunday: "This is an unspeakable violation of human decency," he said. L.A. Times | LAist


California archive


Theodor Geisel in 1984.

Steve Larson/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Theodor Geisel was born on this day in 1904. Better known as Dr. Seuss, the creator of Sam-I-Am, the Grinch, and the Cat in the Hat spent most of his adult life in La Jolla.

Nearly 30 years after death, his work remains a juggernaut of juvenile fiction. In the span of one week last month for example, five of the top 10 books in the category were by Seuss. All told, his 45 books have amassed well more than half a billion sales.

Yet long before any of that happened, Geisel very nearly quit. One spring day in 1937, he was walking up New York's Madison Avenue with a manuscript for his first book under his arm. By then, it had been rejected by more than 20 publishers. Geisel bumped into a friend from his college days, Marshall McClintock, who had recently been made editor of children's books at Vanguard Press. McClintock asked what Geisel was carrying. "That's a book no one will publish," was the answer. "I'm lugging it home to burn."

Geisel at his home office in La Jolla in 1957.

Gene Lester/Getty Images

McClintock invited Geisel to meet the president of Vanguard Press, James Henle, whose office happened to be right there on Madison Avenue. Known for gambling on unorthodox projects, Henle was intrigued by Geisel's work, which didn't look like anything else on the market. According to Geisel, the whole encounter — from chance encounter to contract signing — took 20 minutes.

The critical response to "And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street" was overwhelming. Beatrix Potter, the "Peter Rabbit" author, called it "the cleverest book I have met with for many years." A New Yorker critic wrote: "They say it's for children, but better get a copy for yourself and marvel at the good Dr. Seuss's impossible pictures and the moral tale of the little boy who exaggerated not wisely but too well."

As Geisel went on to broad fame, he remained forever grateful to McClintock. "That's one of the reasons I believe in luck," he once said, "If I'd been going down the other side of Madison Avenue, I would be in the dry‐cleaning business today."


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The California Sun is written by Mike McPhate, a former California correspondent for the New York Times.

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