Let’s compare and contrast.

Last year, the city of San Diego had to slash $43 million in spending. The public and politicians were outraged about the mayor’s plan, and they made a stink.

This year, $200 million had to be trimmed from the budget. The public and politicians were quiet, at least for the most part, and seemed to accept the mayor’s plan without much complaint.

What happened? According our analysis, it had a lot to do with Mayor Jerry Sanders and his conversion into a great communicator.

Also on our site:

  • The feds are finally moving to irrigate the barren hillsides by the border that we’ve been writing about. Created as part of the border-fence project, they’ve been posing a risk of erosion to an environmentally sensitive area.
  • Incoming! A new UCSD study suggests we each take in an average of 34 gigabytes of information each day outside work — enough to fill seven DVDs. We talked to one of the study authors about what is inevitably being called “Too Much Information” (TMI! TMI!) in headlines. Check out his anecdote about why the telephone freaked people out when it appeared.
  • We’ve been tracking the large number of local houses with mortgages that are “underwater,” “upside-down,” and “somersaulty/topsy-turvy” (OK, I made that last one up). In other words, the owners owe more on their homes than they could sell for right now. We look at the latest numbers and explain why those who aren’t underwater aren’t necessarily in the clear when it comes to refinancing.
  • In local economic analysis, Rich Toscano explains why two surveys paint different pictures of the local job market and provides insight into which one is most “forward-looking.”
  • Our editorial cartoonist has a sneaking suspicion that the mayor is seeking but not finding.
  • The Photo of the Day will make you feel mellow (as will today’s photo soundtrack).

Elsewhere:

  • Rep. Darrell Issa has introduced a bill to protect more than 21,000 acres of wilderness in North County. (NCT)
  • In Escondido, the City Council shook things up at its struggling performing arts center, hoping management changes can turn it around. (NCT)
  • The economy inevitably changes immigration patterns. But now, it’s also changing the face of day laborers. The Union-Tribune writes that U.S.-born white men are now lining up next to Latin American immigrants outside of Home Depots looking for work.
  • A judge has found a flaw in a landmark pact that brings more water to arid San Diego that could unravel the deal. However, one local water manager says “it’s way too premature to hit the panic button.” (UT)

Whoops. Too late.

— RANDY DOTINGA

Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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