Bob Filner, who wants to be mayor, is going to release his plan to solve the city’s pension problem soon, within days or weeks. Or so he’s said — many times at many times.

Nine months ago he promised a plan would be released promptly, and he’s kept on saying it. We’ve got a timeline tracking twists and turns of the 280 days since he announced his candidacy and promised a pension plan in “about a month.”

Filner is the only one of the four major candidates who doesn’t support the pension reform measure on the June ballot, newly named Proposition B. He claims his ideas will save more money.

Fact-Checking the Mayoral Mud-Slinging

The mayor’s race is finally starting to heat up in the mudslinging department. Last week, Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher talked with NBC 7 San Diego’s Gene Cubbison and unleashed a barrage of negative claims against Councilman Carl DeMaio, a fellow Republican rival.

He finished his smack down with this zinger: “That’s a taxpayer watchdog, Gene, who’s all bark and no bite.”

In a rare Fact Check-a-palooza, we examine five of the claims Fletcher unleashed. We found two are true, one is mostly true, one is false and one can’t be determined.

No. 5 in 2012: Land Use

There’s nothing more important or basic that our public officials do than deciding what to do with our land.

In his list of 12 stories to watch in 2012, our Scott Lewis puts upcoming land-use battles as No. 5 and takes a peak at Doug Manchester’s stalled Navy Broadway Complex.

“Sure, uglier, more depressing places exist,” Lewis writes. (Maybe he’s seen the inside of my garage?) “But not on public land with so much potential and value.”

Manchester’s project has struggled to find investors and clear regulatory hurdles. Its opponents say it’s dead. But Manchester’s guy remains optimistic.

Lewis, who’s hoping to get through his 2012 list before the new year rolls around, explores other land-use issues: the battle over the Fat City Lofts apartment complex along the waterfront, the fight over the future of industrial mecca/residential neighborhood Barrio Logan and what the Port does with the 10th Avenue Terminal.

Reacting to DeMaio’s ‘Fascinating’ Life

Our readers are buzzing about our extensive profile of Councilman Carl DeMaio, which revealed the unusual way in which he divides the personal and the political.

We’ve compiled some of the comments in a quick post following the DeMaio profile and our story on his stewardship of a new GOP.

Teenage ‘Mules’ Takes Drugs Across Border

In a story from Tijuana, the Associated Press chronicles the kids who serve as “mules,” ferrying drugs across the international border.  The number of kids aged 14-18 caught trying to pass drugs into the U.S. at Tijuana has grown tenfold to 190 last year from 19 in 2008.

CityBeat at a Crossroads

In a letter from its editor, San Diego CityBeat says it’s “at a crossroads” and is asking readers to come up with new ways to pay for its news coverage other than traditional ads.

“The alternative to coming up with innovative fundraising ideas is to hack away at our content. San Diego needs more high-quality journalism, not less,” CityBeat says. “For heaven’s sake, the daily newspaper is owned by a local developer whose stated No. 1 priority is getting a football stadium built on the waterfront.”

Arts and Culture for Your Weekend

Never mind the rain. The weekend holds plenty of ways to stay dry and enjoy the local arts and culture scene. Our arts maven, Kelly Bennett, will be on KPBS radio today at 12:40 talking about what to do this weekend, and she offers up a preview of what she’ll talk about.

Bay Cleanup on Tap

Water quality officials voted for a $70 million bay cleanup project that will “mandate collecting between 143,000 and 165,000 cubic yards of waste to protect marine life and people from chemicals and heavy metals lodged in the bay bottom,” the U-T reports.

Big Week for Nudity in the News

• The owner of a popular East County nudist resort has purchased a big chunk of the town of Jacumba, 29 properties in all, 10News reports.

But the owner, a nudist himself, isn’t going to turn Jacumba into “the first naked town in the United States.”

• The city has rejected the claim of a man who says he was wrongly arrested for wearing a revealing loincloth/thong outfit during last year’s gay pride festival, NBC 7 San Diego reports. The case wasn’t prosecuted; the 30-year-old man claims he was taken to jail and mistreated there.   

The man’s attorney says the city selectively prosecutes nudity. Back in 2010, the city took a hard line against public nudity when the World Naked Bike Ride wanted a permit, unlike several other U.S. cities that don’t make a fuss about the annual event. But officials do look the other way when hundreds of people drop their clothes at Black’s Beach on sunny summer days.   

Thought for Food

UCSD researchers are out with a new study that links consumption of transfats to aggression and irritability, possibly because the fats interfere with the body’s production of fatty acids, the NC Times reports.   

A website called Science 2.0 points out that there may be more to this story, since it’s possible that “anger forced people to eat more trans fats,” not the other way around.

Very confusing. If you need me, I’ll be pondering this, angrily, over a Twinkie.

Please contact Randy Dotinga directly at and follow him on Twitter:

Randy Dotinga

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. Please contact him directly at

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