june 19, 2000
enough for you? With exquisite
timing, a federal
report predicting the effects of global warming
was released on the eve of San Francisco’s own mini-heat
wave. Nothing is carved in stone, mind you, but those of
the forewarned-forearmed school might take heed. The
assessment, which will incorporate public comments until
August 11, derives its content from three years of
intensive consultations and complex computer analyses. The
scope is national, but in its sections pertaining to West,
it’s a model of the interconnections that make the
region work: water, agriculture, ranching, recreational
areas, urban populations. To think that people used to
dismiss BANA (Bioregional
Association of the Northern Americas) as hippie
nonsense. <> Meanwhile, on the other side of
the Pacific, China is reeling from its worst drought in
nearly 20 years, reports the June 12 Planet Ark (Reuters
Daily World Environment News). Faced with a mere 300
cubic meters of water per capita (that’s 3.3 percent of
the world’s average), Beijing residents can expect
"strict and obligatory" controls on their water
use. The northern plains are parched, giving rise to
estimates of an 8 percent drop in wheat production. And
the litany of anguish continues: the BBC
reported on June 15 that "massive infestations"
of drought-loving locusts are chewing their way across the
farmlands of seven provinces. Daiyenu!
Care packages from the Castro. Summer
in San Francisco means the International Lesbian & Gay
Film Festival, running this year until June 25. Turns out
that the sponsoring organization also offers a unique
service called "Send It Home." "Remember
high school? asks Frameline.
"Bullies? Taunting? Spending lots of time alone in
the library? Don't you wish you had some resources back
then that affirmed your young gay identity? Something that
would have connected you to the wider world of queer
folks?" The solution: send an award-winning video —
titles include "Homoteens" and "Surviving
Friendly Fire" — to your hometown library or school
to ease other kids’ painful adolescence.
Help for the weary. Are
you bothered by telemarketers? A recent email offers the
Every time you get a call you consider
junk, just ask the questions in this script. If they
answer no, you may be able to sue them. You can print
copies of it to keep by every phone at home. If everyone
follows it, the junk calls will slowly but surely drop
"Are you calling to sell
something?" (or "Is this a telemarketing
"Could you tell me your full name,
"And a phone number, area code
"What's the name of the
organization you're calling for?"
"Does that organization keep a list
of numbers it's been asked not to call?"
"I would like my number(s)
put on that list. Can you take care of that now?"
"And does the company you work for
also make telemarketing calls for any other
organizations?" (If they answer no, skip the next
"Can you make sure your company won't call me for any
You may need to ask to speak with a
supervisor if they sound lost. When you're ready to let
them off, you might close with "Is it clear that I
never want telemarketing calls from anyone?" and just
say goodbye. If you feel like making them pay, keep going:
"Will your company keep my number
on its do-not-call list for at least ten years?"
"And does your company have a
written policy that says that on paper?"
"Can you send me a copy of
"What's your supervisor's first and
"What's your employer's business
name, address, and main telephone number?"
"Are you calling for a tax-exempt
"Is this call based on a previously
established business relationship?"
Before hanging up, check you have all
their answers written down; then say goodbye. Add the date
and time to your record. (Is it between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.?
For further information, consult Junkbusters.