San Diego. California - It sounded smart on paper. In 2016, the San Diego City Council created a new infrastructure project related to its environmental initiatives: Thousands of streetlights would be retrofitted with energy-efficient LEDs. Plus, remote-controlled sensors would produce publicly accessible data on weather, traffic and parking. Considering the energy savings, the $30 million partnership with General Electric would pay for itself. Win-win. But today, the project is an example of how not to create “smart” city utilities. Those sensors included integrated cameras, and no councilmember formally opposed the potential surveillance issues. Most San Diego residents only learned they were filmed indiscriminately thanks to media reports — in 2019.
Can you imagine a city in the United States secretly creating a Chinese-style public surveillance network that can identify everyone? Can you imagine that same city secretly creating a Chinese-style public watchlisting network? Well imagine no more because it has already happened. When I wrote about "covert facial recognition streetlights coming to a city near you" last year, I never would have dreamt that my article would become a reality so quickly.
U.S. authorities arrested 32 people at a demonstration Monday that was organized by a Quaker group on the border with Mexico, authorities said. Demonstrators were calling for an end to detaining and deporting immigrants and showing support for migrants in a caravan of Central American asylum seekers. A photographer for The Associated Press saw about a dozen people being handcuffed after they were told by agents to back away from a wall that the Border Patrol calls "an enforcement zone." The American Friends Service Committee, which organized the demonstration, said 30 people were stopped by agents in riot gear and taken into custody while they tried to move forward to offer a ceremonial blessing near the wall.
(CALIFORNIA) – Port truck drivers for XPO Logistics Inc. who are on strike held rallies in Los Angeles and San Diego and demanded the company end the rampant day-to-day abuse of drivers. The actions come on the heels of a breaking victory as the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement recognized a striking driver as in fact employed by XPO and determined the company owes him $123,074.43 in back pay. Hundreds of port truck drivers from XPO, as well as NFI Industries, walked off the job on Monday. XPO Logistics is a $15 billion company which moves products for Amazon.com Inc., Toyota Motor Corp., Puma and other major brands around the world. The drivers say that they are improperly labeled “independent contractors” since they cannot drive for any other company but XPO.
By Doug Porter in San Diego Free Press - A wide range of organizations, some of whom rarely get involved in non-electoral politics, are calling upon San Diegans to put on their protesting shoes during the upcoming annual meeting of the American Legislative Council (ALEC). Protests, press conferences, teach-ins, rallies and guerrilla theater will be happening throughout the coming week commencing on Tuesday, July 21st as ALEC delegates are checking in. Buses will coming in from the Los Angeles/Long Beach areas on Wednesday for what organizers expect will be the largest events of the week. Today’s column will focus on the already-announced activities (there are more coming, I’m told). On Friday, I focused on the line up of speakers, including Sen. Ted Cruz, Gov. Scott Walker and former Gov.Mike Huckabee, along with San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer.
The City of San Diego and San Diego Unified Port District want chemical agricultural giant Monsanto to pay for its role in polluting San Diego's bay and tidelands with polychlorinated biphenyls, commonly known as PCBs. On March 16, the municipal agencies sued Monsanto for concealing the hazards associated with PCBs, despite being aware of the health risks associated with ingesting and inhaling the chemical compounds since the 1930s. According to the lawsuit, the risks did not deter Monsanto from trying to protect profits and prolong the use of PCB compounds such as Aroclor, as shown in a report from an ad hoc committee that Monsanto formed in 1969.