Good morning. It’s Thursday, July 28.
- California workers are flooding Mexico City.
- Nancy Pelosi is urged to skip visit to Taiwan.
- And a wild house with a tree growing through it.
A judge this month halted a thinning project designed to strengthen Yosemite’s forests after environmentalists argued that the park hadn’t done a proper review. Since then, two wildfires have threatened the park. Most experts say the question is not whether forest thinning should happen — but how much. “Most of us are absolutely convinced that this is not only a good thing to do, but is absolutely necessary,” said John Battles, a forest ecologist. N.Y. Times
An influx of American tourists and remote workers is transforming some of Mexico City’s most treasured neighborhoods into expat enclaves. As the foreigners, many from California, snap up houses and crowd sleek cafes advertising oat-milk lattes, some locals have begun lashing out. Recently posters appeared around town: “New to the city? Working remotely?” they read in English. “You’re a fucking plague and the locals fucking hate you. Leave.” L.A. Times
An ambitious plan to move water from wetter Northern California to drier Southern California has been talked about for about half a century. On Wednesday, officials released its latest proposal: a single 45-mile tunnel — scaled back from former Gov. Jerry Brown’s two-tunnel vision — that siphons water from the Sacramento River then conveys it under Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and into the main aqueduct that flows south to thirsty cities and farms. An array of opponents stand in the way. Sacramento Bee | A.P.
As tensions mounted over Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s proposed trip to Taiwan, the A.P. reported that the Pentagon was developing contingency plans to step up its forces in the region. In an editorial, the Washington Post said the San Francisco Democrat had a right to visit Taiwan, yet urged against it: “With war in Ukraine still raging … the United States, and the world, can ill afford an avoidable military showdown with China, much less one that might begin with Chinese planes forcing down a U.S. plane carrying Ms. Pelosi.” Washington Post
Dispatches on police use of deadly force:
- The family of Valentina Orellana Peralta, a 14-year-old fatally shot inside a North Hollywood clothing store on Dec. 23, sued the LAPD, accusing an officer of firing “recklessly.” Peralta was struck by a rifle round in a dressing room when police shot at a suspect armed with a bike lock. L.A. Times | A.P.
- On Nov. 30, 2016, Daniel Landeros, a father of five, was confronted by Elk Grove police officers after a car crash. When he walked away, they pinned him face down with his hands cuffed behind his back until he stopped breathing and, eventually, died. A wrongful death trial opened Tuesday. Sacramento Bee
- On July 14, Paul Chavez Jr., a father of three, was drunk and ignoring orders as he shuffled toward two Modesto police officers while holding a trailer hitch. Video released Tuesday showed one of the officers fire a fatal shot into his chest. YouTube/Modesto Police | Modesto Bee
“Atrocious.” “Disgusting.” “An embarrassment.”
During a public meeting in Tehama County on July 19, Supervisor Bob Williams twice referred to his critics with hidden slurs in a prepared statement. In one instance, Williams said he was tired of people who “can’t understand normal thinking,” a backronym for the c-word. At the next supervisors meeting on Tuesday, people gathered with signs demanding his resignation and berated him during public comment. Red Bluff Daily News | KRCR
In Fort Bidwell, the church is on Church Street. The old bridge is reached via Bridge Street. And if someone says to meet by the willow bush, you can find it on Willow Street. Located in the northeastern corner of California, Fort Bidwell is home to more cows than people. But the scenery is gorgeous and there’s a steakhouse so good people are said to drive 100 miles one way just to eat there. The travel journalist John Bartell paid a visit. YouTube/ABC10
The San Francisco artist Rebecca Szeto transforms old paintbrushes into works of art. Inspiration for the project struck in 1999, when she noticed a speck of red paint on one of her old brushes. It looked like a figure from a 17th-century portrait of a Spanish queen. She’s been making “Paintbrush Portraits” ever since, each one alluding to historical figures or moments. Colossal | designboom
A few favorites. 👇
At a Board of Supervisors meeting in San Bernardino County on Tuesday, a local businessman named Jeff Burum urged the county to pursue secession from California. He wasn’t alone: at least three mayors — from Fontana, Apple Valley, and Victorville — endorsed the plan. Burum suggested a name for the 51st state: Empire. “With the way things are in California right now, I don’t know if there’s any hope for California,” he said. Press Enterprise | ABC7
As L.A. County neared another potential mask mandate, more cities said they would decline to enforce any new restriction. Officials in Pasadena, Long Beach, Manhattan Beach, El Segundo, and Beverly Hills have come out against a new masking order in public, indoor places despite high levels of Covid-19 transmission. With case rates and hospitalizations stabilizing, it was uncertain whether the county would go ahead with the mandate. L.A. Times | NBC Los Angeles
In 2015, a San Diego professor named Tom Patterson caught a superbug while vacationing in Egypt. He was near death when his wife Steffanie, an epidemiologist, made a last-ditch gambit to save his life. She convinced scientists around the country to collect phages — viruses that eat bacteria — in sewage, bogs, boat bilges, and other places. A few weeks later, Tom became among the first patients to be successfully treated with intravenous phage therapy. CNN told the incredible story.
“What happens when it rains? What happens when the tree grows? What about bugs? So many questions.”
A home listed for sale along the Central Coast includes an unusual feature: a live oak sprawling from the floor, around a staircase, and through the ceiling and walls. Photos of the $3.8 million “tree house” in Pismo Beach prompted a frenzy online as people expressed bewilderment over the property’s appeal. A former tenant confirmed that, yes, living with a tree has downsides. “There was an ungodly number of roly-polies,” he said. SFGATE
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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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