Good morning. It’s Monday, Aug. 1.
- Californians fund reelection bid of Rep. Liz Cheney.
- Siskiyou County wildfire threatens town of Yreka.
- And residents in Palo Alto fight homeless parking.
Environmental groups in California want to hasten the adoption of electric vehicles by taxing the rich. But they’re facing an unexpected foe: Gov. Gavin Newsom. The governor has argued that the proposal to subsidize electric vehicles is a ploy to help the ride-hailing company Lyft hit its electrification targets. Mary Creasman, an environmental leader who has cheered much of Newsom’s climate agenda, called that assertion an outright lie. “I’m pretty disgusted,” she said. Politico
Californians have contributed more to Republican Rep. Liz Cheney than donors from any other state, including her Wyoming home. While Cheney’s vigorous criticism of former President Trump has imperiled her reelection bid, it’s won her fans in heavily Democratic California, including among Hollywood and Silicon Valley moguls. Mardy Wasserman, a lifelong Democrat, has been sending Cheney $25 a month. “I don’t agree with her on anything,” she said. L.A. Times
Speaker Nancy Pelosi set off on Saturday for a tour of Asian nations that may include a stop in Taiwan, a possibility that has enraged China, which claims a self-governing island as its own. On the same day, Beijing announced new military drills in the Taiwan Strait. Pelosi has not confirmed whether she’ll visit Taiwan, but said recently that it was “important for us to show support for Taiwan.” N.Y. Times | A.P.
Hu Xijin, a prominent Chinese commentator: Fire warning shots at Pelosi’s plane. “If ineffective, then shoot them down.” New York Post
The word for a group of parrots is a pandemonium. In the 15th century, it became fashionable among English hunters to assign whimsical names to groups of animals. That’s how we got a crash of rhinos, a shrewdness of apes, and a parliament of owls. The reason behind the collective noun for parrots is no mystery to residents of California neighborhoods where the colorful birds have thrived for decades since escaping from the exotic animal trade. Christopher Ameruoso shared a short video of their squawking along his morning walk in Southern California. 👉 YouTube
A wildfire that sparked in the Klamath National Forest near Yreka on Friday was fanned by hot winds into the largest blaze to date in California, destroying at least a dozen homes and forcing thousands of people to flee. By late Sunday, the McKinney fire had spread to 82 square miles and remained completely out of control. Fire officials said their priority was protecting Yreka, home to 7,800 people, as the flames crept to within 4 miles away. Siskiyou Daily News | Record Searchlight
See latest fire map. 👉 InciWeb
In 2016, San Franciscans voted to allow noncitizen parents to cast ballots in school board elections, the first ordinance of its kind in California. Supporters argued it was the right thing to do on behalf of immigrant children. On Friday, a Superior Court judge declared it unconstitutional and struck it down. S.F. Chronicle | SF Standard
Bill Russell, the NBA great who died on Sunday at the age of 88, discovered basketball in Oakland. A gangly center at McClymonds High, he planned to work in the Oakland shipyards before getting a surprise scholarship to play at the University of San Francisco. He thrived, becoming the first college player to average 20 points and 20 rebounds a game while leading the team to championships in 1955 and 1956. Later, as a Boston Celtic, he won more championship rings than he could wear on his hands. Mercury News | S.F. Chronicle
A church in Palo Alto, where the median home costs $3.9 million, wanted to do something to help the homeless. So they got tentative approval to open four of its parking spaces to the homeless for overnight parking. Neighbors are fighting it. Randy Stoltenberg said he knows many people without a home just need a hand, but he’s worried about criminals. “It only takes one bad experience to impact a child, a family, or a neighbor for a lifetime,” he said. Palo Alto Online
There’s arsenic in the water at the trailer park where Pascual Campos Ochoa lives in the Eastern Coachella Valley. Just 26 years old, he has kidney disease. Other residents of Oasis Mobile Home Park, home to many field laborers, suffer rashes and hair loss. But with no affordable alternatives, they say they are trapped. When even one family does leave, new tenants almost immediately take their place. N.Y. Times
In the early 2000s, Matt Drange was fond of his high school journalism teacher, Eric Burgess. He was charismatic and fun, beloved by students at Rosemead High in the San Gabriel Valley. But it was an open secret that Burgess had fathered a child with a former student. So Drange, now a reporter at Business Insider, decided to investigate. In a remarkable report, Drange found that Burgess repeatedly groomed female students for sex as administrators missed multiple chances to stop him. Insider
“It’s just preposterous.”
“There’s a zero percent chance” it happened.
“I don’t know why she made it up.”
Naomi Seligman, a former communications chief for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, has accused her former boss of running a Mafia-like administration that protects alleged sexual harassers. She cited a 2016 incident when she says one of Garcetti’s top advisors, Rick Jacobs, forcefully kissed her in front of her staff. Several women present at the gathering now say that is a lie. Los Angeles Magazine
Eric Brightwell, 47, of Silver Lake, has lived car-free in Los Angeles for 11 years. He said when his car broke down he realized he could get around easily by bike, foot, and bus. People he meets are baffled, at times even a little annoyed. “Sometimes people say things like what if you have to buy a couch?” he said. “I buy a couch maybe once every 20 years. And it gets delivered.” Vice
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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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