Archive for February, 2013

Domestic Violence Is Against The Law

| February 19th, 2013 | No Comments »

The following article was written for Alameda County in California.  If you find yourself in a violent situation, please use the guide to direct you towards people who are there to help.  No one deserves to be bullied, whether physically or verbally.   Please allow trained professionals to help you.  Children, women, and men have the right to be safe.  It is against the law to contacted, annoyed, or harassed by anyone.   You do have the right to be Safe!   Emergency Police –  Fire –  Ambulance 911   Is someone you love hitting you, hurting you, threatening you, putting you down?  You are not alone, help is available to you, your children, your family.  Do not fall into the trap that you are “Bothering” someone, all of us are vulnerable to violence.   Many of us have faced similar situations in our lifetime.  With the help and understanding,

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Just How Safe Are All Those Online Banks? It Depends . . .

| February 18th, 2013 | No Comments »

FDIC insures deposits in many, but not all.  So do some checking Question: How can investors know money at an online bank is safe? Answer: Savvy online investors know keeping uninvested cash with a brokerage is usually a bad idea.  Most brokers sweep cash into money markets paying next to no interest. So that leaves online investors with another option for cash the do not want to put in the market; an online savings account.  There is no shortage of banks that pay higher rates of interest than brokerages do.  You can usually pinpoint banks with decent interest rates using sites such as Warning: Be careful before blindly mailing your cash to some no-name bank somewhere just to get an extra 0.1 percentage points of interest.  You will want to log into the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.’s website at and use the BankFind feature at  This tool

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My Granddaughter’s Experience . . . Frightening

| February 17th, 2013 | No Comments »

For over 30 years I responded to the needs of others as a member of the San Jose Police Department, in California.  I suppose after many years on the job, most cops get a feeling of invincibly, falsely believing we are immune to crime, having witnessed, seen and heard everything and anything. The day my granddaughter called, all the myths associated with being a “Cop” flew out the window.  As my granddaughter spoke, my heart just sank.  I could not believe the fear in hers words as she described the following incident to me.  I will start my story from the beginning: I have a 20 year old granddaughter living in South Sacramento with a roommate.  One night, my granddaughter received a telephone call from a friend who needed a ride home.  On her way to her friend’s location, she was pulled over, by a “Marked” police vehicle, as she

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KTVU Signing-Off*

| February 16th, 2013 | No Comments »

The first independent television station I can recall was KTVU, Channel 2, located in Jack London Square in Oakland, California.  One of their “Firsts,” was to move their newscasts from the traditional “11 O’clock” time slot to 10 P.M.  Besides starting an hour earlier, their news’ broadcast was 60 minutes long, doubling the airtime of the nationally known television corporations, such as ABC, CBS, and NBC. Over the years, as the internet changed the way viewers watched television, Channel 2 has remanded a constant.  The mixture of local, national, and worldwide news continues, live football and baseball games were/are broadcasted, movies, sitcoms, generally entertainment that whole families could view together, brought the advertisers and advertisements needed to survive financially, which they have done quite well.  Another oddity that I found refreshing over the years and unlike many other television stations, local and nationally, were the employees, especially those in the

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Doors . . . Our Last Means of Defense

| February 14th, 2013 | No Comments »

Today, most homes have three to four doors that allow us to enter/exit our homes.  Usually, the front of our homes have a ornate, large front door and garage door(s), with perhaps a side entrance and/or rear sliding door.  If we have an alarm system, those doors, with the possible exception of the garage door, are wired into the alarm system. To understand the function of the various doors we have in our homes, let’s go back to the framing of our homes during construction.  In this illustration, our home is a single story dwelling with 8′ high ceilings inside.  Although heights may vary, this basic framing technique pertains to all framing of door and window openings. As we watch our home being built, whether a custom home or production home, the framing is the same.  In our home the framing consists of 2″ X 4″ bottom plates, pre-cut studs,

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On-Line Storage

| February 13th, 2013 | No Comments »

There are many advantages to on-line storage as there are companies that provide this service.  We recommend Go Daddy as our number one choice based primarily on the fact that you can speak with a “Live” person 24/7.  To us, that in it self, speaks volumes. Many sites, such as Just Cloud, Sugar Sync, Drop Box, and Carbonite may not offer tech support via telephone, unlimited storage not available, high cost per gigabyte, only offer annual payment plans, etc.  However, Go Daddy offers a highly trusted, full service website for all your needs.  They have hosted all my various on-line needs for many years.

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Making a Habit of Safety

| February 13th, 2013 | No Comments »

When I was a little boy growing up in Oakland, California, I had the same teacher for both the fifth and sixth grades, Marilyn Thomas.  Mrs. Thomas was really, really, really    pretty.  She was in her late twenties, had hair and eyes the color of dark chocolate, wore bright red lipstick and fingernail polish.  She always dressed very professionally, usually in suits, and always wore high heels. When Mrs. Thomas was on vacation or ill, our substitute teacher was Mrs. Horowitz.  Mrs. Horowitz was really, really, really old, she must have been in her 40’s.  She had her hair piled-up on the top of her head, fashioned in the shape of a beehive, wore glasses, and had teeth that seemed not to fit very well.  She wore dresses, usually with a floral pattern, with a belt matching the print of the dress.  Her shoes could best be described as being

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Alameda County Sheriff’s Office Color Code of Mental Awareness

| February 12th, 2013 | No Comments »

The following information was distributed by Deputy Jeffery Reed, Firearms Instructor, ACSO.  Although the content is intended for active and/or retired officers.  It is my belief people from all walks of life can benefit greatly when they read this article and start to incorporate these values into their daily lives. *With the exception of the opening and closing of this article, the following is copied verbatim from the Sheriff’s handout. The Color Code How aware are you of your surroundings and what is taking place around you as you pass through life?  Having a weapon, lethal or non-lethal and knowing how to use it effectively is important.  Although, not as important as the ability to see a fight coming and being mentally prepared to defend yourself or your love ones.  You may be the fastest and most accurate shooter in the group, but if you are not aware of what

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Human Trafficking

| February 11th, 2013 | No Comments »

An article written by Chris Metinko, a staff writer for the Bay Area News Groups, appeared recently in the Valley Times Newspaper.  The article named “Walking To Stop Human Trafficking” reads as follows: San Leandro – An East Bay nonprofit will host walkathons across the state this weekend to help raise awareness and money for the problem of human trafficking. Fremont-based California Against Slavery is organizing walks throughout California in the following cities San Leandro, Orange County, and San Diego. Their goal is to not only spotlight the issue, but to raise funds for a proposed 2012 State Ballot initiative that would set harsher penalties, including longer jail/prison time for those convicted for human trafficking. Those of us who call the San Francisco/Bay Area home, it may be hard to accept that San Francisco is listed as one of the top ten hubs for human trafficking in the United States

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Bank Technicians Discover Scanning Devices on ATMs

| February 10th, 2013 | No Comments »

An article written by Rick Hurd, featured in the Valley Times Newspaper, dated Tuesday, September 27, 2011, focused on the ongoing problem of people “Stealing” customer’s PIN and ATM card numbers.  The article will follow in it’s entirety, but the underlying message is that it is the consumers’ responsibility to “Protect and Serve” their personal information.  There is no doubt, if you let your guard down, there are plenty of people that will take advantage of this void in your personal information protection, thus wrecking havoc within your personal finances. Pleasant Hill, California – A routine ATM check at a bank on Contra Costa Boulevard turned up a reminder that you can never be quite sure who’s watching when money is pulled out of the machines.  Police are investigating how scanning devices became attached to two ATMs at Chase Bank, Pleasant Hill police Sergeant Lisa Hugdahl said.  Workers “Saw something

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