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By Eric Johnson
Published Mar 11, 2024

Political Economics and the Movies

Before we get into the serious fun of continuing the conversation about the Oscars: a reminder.

We know from the clicks that many of you are aware that this newsletter contains a news digest featuring stories from the California Local Media Alliance and other news outlets you can trust. See below.

Of course, you will also find access to local nonprofits that are doing important work in your community, and also our fledgling Good Business Directory of local businesses at work on community-building. And as always, a tasty recipe that you can find only here.

Let’s proceed…

Movies as Politics

Art is not trivial. The visual arts, literature, theater, music—all allow us to touch the deepest parts of the human condition. Movies at their best bring all of the other arts together, and put them in a place where we can all access them pretty easily.

Four of the contenders for Best Picture last night tackle big political issues—and, not incidentally, sexual politics.

Oppenheimer offers a smart (if bombastic IMJ) story of the man who gave humanity the means for total global annihilation—and also delves into his relationships with the women in his life.

Killers of the Flower Moon confronts one of our nation's darkest sins—the mass murder of the land’s Indigenous population—while also considering the politics of one marriage, and one woman’s love for the man who ultimately kills her.

Poor Things investigates sexual politics via the story of a “woman” (created by a man) who is unburdened by society’s proscriptions.

And Barbie (my choice for Best Picture, which as of this writing feels like a long shot) maps a devastating takedown of the patriarchy itself on a delightful piece of pink fluff that feels a little bit like Pee-wee's Big Adventure, but is way more dangerous.

This next article may be moot but I hope you'll find it edifying.

Why ‘Barbie’ Deserved a Best Picture Oscar

From now on, girls will learn from Barbie that they live in a world where men subjugate women. They will receive this truth during a joyous cinematic spectacle.

Big Movie Money

Here in California, movies are one of our most important cultural exports, and are one of the ways California leads the world. They are also big business, and rival Silicon Valley, ag and defense as a backbone of the state's economy. Here is exactly how that happeneed.

Hooray For Hollywood: All About California’s Most Glamorous Industry

From its earliest days, Hollywood has reigned as California's most glamorous industry.
From its early days of hard-charging, Jewish immigrant moguls to today's domination by megacorporations, here's how Hollywood continues to hold its place as one of California's most important industries.

Help for Hospice Patients in the Sacramento Region

YoloCares offers help for families in Yolo, Sacramento, Placer and El Dorado counties who are dealing with end-of-life issues.

The Better End

With spaces to relax and socialize, YoloCares facilities support patients along their care journey—not just the end of life.
For more than four decades, YoloCares has helped families navigate life’s final stages.

Recipe of the Week

Our friends at Sacramento Digs Gardening publish a recipe from their gardens every Sunday, which we feature here so you can start your week with some yum.

See more recipes in their Taste Winter! cookbook.

Old-fashioned chili – warm taste of summer on a chilly night

Warm up on a late winter night with chili and beans, made with last summer's tomatoes (or purchased canned tomatoes).
Recipe: Mom’s chili and beans with grated cheese and onions

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Our overview page for Sacramento County is updated daily with the latest state and local news, weather alerts, local government announcements and local blog posts and news snippets from community groups and individuals.
Direct your browser to to catch up on the latest news in California and Sacramento County. Bookmark the link and visit often, there's a lot happening in your community!

Get to Know a Group

Big Brothers Big Sisters logo Big Brothers Big Sisters

Big Brother Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong, enduring, professionally supported mentorship. The chapter serves Sacramento and Yolo counties, as well as southern Placer County.

→ Learn more

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From Our Media Allies

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Folsom Times logo Latest Ballot Counts Show Folsom’s Rodriguez, Hoover Leads Strengthen

Rodriguez now at 50.54% for District 4 Supervisor seat; Hoover at 51.9% for Assembly District 7

Folsom Times logo ‘Our Shelves Are Bare,’ Folsom Food Bank Calls for Community Help

The Twin Lakes Food Bank in Folsom routinely serves 200 households a week with food assistance. With that number climbing to 300 in February, the local nonprofit is suffering a shortage, leaving many of the shelves bare in its warehouse …

Sacramento News and Review logo Harder Leads Coalition Urging Army Corps of Engineers to Deny Permit for Delta Tunnel ‘Water Grab’

Representative Josh Harder (CA-9) is leading a group of his Delta region colleagues to urge the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deny a permit for the now-infamous Delta Tunnel.

Folsom Times logo SAFE Credit Union to Award $16,000 in Local Scholarships

Locally based SAFE Credit Union has launched its announce 2024 Scholarship Program will grant four (4) $4,000 scholarships to graduating high school seniors and community college students who meet the eligibility requirements this year for a total of $16,000. 

Folsom Times logo Six New Retailers Set to Open at Folsom Premium Outlets

Shoppers in Folsom are about to gain several new options as the Folsom Premium Outlets have announced six new unique retailers expected to open their doors at the Folsom Boulevard shopping mall in the coming weeks.

Sacramento News and Review logo Protecting Pets in Sacramento’s Unhoused Community

The Bradshaw Animal Shelter started the PAWS mobile clinic in 2023 to go out in the field to provide basic needs like spay and neuter services, medical check-ups and wellness to pets of those who are unhoused.

Folsom Times logo Day Hiker: Hiking Mammoth Bar to Murderer’s Bar Rapids

When I worked for California State Parks in the Auburn State Recreation Area, I found Mammoth Bar. Most know this as the OHV Park with noisy and smelly motorcycles. But have you ever been on a day that wasn’t open …

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Recent Local News

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• Meet Jessica Sanders, Executive Director of the Sacramento Tree Foundation

A Q&A with Jessica Sanders, who helps the leafy citizens of the "City of Trees" thrive.

(03/11/2024) → Sactown Magazine

• March is Museum Membership Month

A list of Sacramento area museums offering discounted memberships in March.

(03/11/2024) → Sacramento Press

• Meet the High Schoolers Behind the Mic at KYDS 91.5 FM

Intro to Media Arts students at El Camino Fundamental High School are the voices and talent driving this area radio station.

(03/11/2024) → The Observer

• Fong Moves on in California Primary to Replace Kevin McCarthy.

Assemblyman Vince Fong, the presumed frontrunner to replace retired Bakersfield Rep. Kevin McCarthy in California’s most Republican-filled congressional district, will vie in the Nov. 5 general election — presuming California’s secretary of state doesn’t block him.

(03/11/2024) → The Sacramento Bee

• Harder to Face Republican Kevin Lincoln in Tough November House Race

Rep. Josh Harder, D-Tracy, and Stockton Mayor Kevin Lincoln, a Republican, will vie in a close November election for a left-leaning Stockton-anchored seat in the Central Valley.

(03/11/2024) → The Sacramento Bee

• Sacramento Among the Best Places to Drive an Electric Vehicle

New report ranked metro areas based on electric vehicle charging infrastructure and found improvement over the last year using data from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center.

(03/10/2024) → The Sacramento Bee

• Citrus Heights Adopts New "Objective Design Standards"

The new building guidelines are mandated by the California legislature laws which require expedited review of qualified housing projects and limit jurisdictional discretion to objective standards.

(03/09/2024) → Citrus Heights Sentinel

• Measles Case Diagnosed at Area Hospital

A child tested positive for measles on March 5 at UC Davis Medical Center, and officials say up to 300 people may have been exposed.

(03/08/2024) → The Sacramento Bee

• Golden 1 Center Major Economic Driver in Region

According to the Greater Economic Council and Downtown Sacramento Partnership, Golden 1 Center brings in hundreds of millions of dollars annually in economic benefits to the Sacramento region.

(03/08/2024) → Sacramento Press

• Florin Farmers Market Moves

Making way for the construction of a new hotel, the Florin Farmers Market has moved to a new location at the Florin Light Rail Station at 6117 Florin Road and is open every Thursday from 8AM to noon.

(03/08/2024) → The Sacramento Bee

• Local Nonprofit Helps Send Kids on College Tours

Founded in 2008, Sacramento nonprofit Voice of Youth provides mentorship and support for local youth, including funding college tours.

(03/07/2024) → The Sacramento Bee

• Four Tribes in California Receive Federal Funds to Boost Access to Electricity

For many living on the Yurok Tribe’s reservation, which lies in and around Humboldt County, access to electricity has been spotty for years — if that access has existed at all. 

(03/07/2024) → CapPublicRadio
  California Local Pin Marker  

Recent Statewide News

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• California Attorney General Boosts Bill Banning Medical Debt From Credit Reports

California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced Monday that he is throwing his weight behind legislation to bar medical debt from showing up on consumer credit reports, a Democratic-led effort to offer protection to patients squeezed by health care bills.

(03/10/2024) → California Healthline

• California Law Enforcement Transparency Legislation Signed Into Law

After receiving bipartisan support, California Senate Bill 400, legislation intended to increase law enforcement transparency, was signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom.

(03/09/2024) → Davis Vanguard

• San Francisco Voters Pass Police & Drug Ballot Measures

Proposition E broadens police surveillance powers and Proposition F mandates drug screening and treatment for people receiving county welfare benefits who are suspected of drug use.

(03/08/2024) → Los Angeles Times

• New Website Features Information on Care of Backyard Chickens, Sheep, Goats

The University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources advisors has published a new website with information resources for small acreage landowners raising livestock.

(03/07/2024) → YubaNet

• CA Legislature Could Set a New Record for Women

The number of women elected to the state Senate and Assembly is 50 of 120 after the 2022 election. And based on the primary results so far, it’s expected to increase to at least 55 women after the November election.

(03/07/2024) → CalMatters

• Fewer Students, Higher Absenteeism Affect California Public School Financing

California’s public schools depend on state aid for the lion’s share of their operational income. Two trends – declining enrollment and high absenteeism – are creating financial headaches.

(03/07/2024) → CalMatters

• California Agrees to Cuts of Colorado River Water

California, Arizona and Nevada would cut their allocations about 20% when reservoir levels drop. But other states have their own more aggressive plan. Now the federal government has to decide how to manage the drought-plagued river.

(03/06/2024) → CalMatters

• Californians Face Higher Costs for Goods and Services Than Before the Pandemic Despite Inflation Slowing

The consumer price index shows services are mostly responsible for persistent inflation, but prices for food and other goods in California remain high.

(03/05/2024) → CalMatters

• California is Seeing a Historic Rise in the Number of Black Women Running for Office

At least 24 Black women are running for seats in the California Legislature this year, resulting from years of work cultivating new leaders and growing confidence among voters.

(03/04/2024) → CalMatters

• California Schools Gained Billions During COVID-19. Now the Money is Running Out

California schools got $23.4 billion in federal pandemic relief money. Low-income schools that got the most may be hardest hit when the funds expire this year.

(03/04/2024) → CalMatters
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Government Announcements

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Image of United States seal. United States   (03/10/2024)

Jen's Breakfast Burritos, LLC, Recalls Ready to Eat Breakfast Burrito Products Due to Possible Listeria Contamination

WASHINGTON, March 10, 2024 - Jen's Breakfast Burritos, LLC, an Auburn, Wash. establishment, is recalling approximately 144 pounds of ready-to-eat (RTE) breakfast burrito products that may be adulterated with Listeria...
Image of City of Sacramento seal. City of Sacramento   (03/08/2024)

City to kickoff construction on new multi-use path along American River

The City of Sacramento will soon begin construction on a new multi-use path, furthering efforts to create a continuous, accessible river-trail network. The Two Rivers Trail Phase 2 project will create more than two miles of paved pathway along the south bank of the Lower American River. The $7 million project will provide a vital [...] The post City to …
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/07/2024)

Wesco, Inc. Issues Voluntary Recall and Allergy Alert on Undeclared Peanut in Wesco Mint No Bake Cookie Bites

Wesco, Inc. of Muskegon, MI is recalling 750 units of Wesco Mint No Bake Cookie Bites, because it may contain undeclared peanut. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to peanuts run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products. The affected Wesc
Image of City of Sacramento seal. City of Sacramento   (03/07/2024)

Data Report: How the City responded to homelessness Feb. 26-March 3

The City of Sacramento has released its weekly progress report for the Citys Incident Management Team responding to homelessness. From Feb. 26-March 3, the City of Sacramento received 655 calls to 311 customer service related to unsheltered individuals. Through the work of the IMT, 811 calls were closed, meaning that either the issue was remedied, [...] The post Data Report: …
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/07/2024)

Salm Partners, LLC, Recalls Johnsonville Polish Kielbasa Turkey Sausage Products Due to Possible Foreign Matter Contamination

WASHINGTON, March 7, 2024 - Salm Partners, LLC, a Denmark, Wis., establishment, is recalling approximately 35,430 pounds of Johnsonville turkey kielbasa sausage that may be contaminated with foreign materials, specifically...
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/06/2024)

Stonewall Kitchen Issues Allergy Alert for Wheat in Limited Quantity of Gluten Free Cinnamon Sugar Doughnut Mix

Stonewall Kitchen of York, Maine is voluntarily recalling a limited amount of their Gluten Free Cinnamon Sugar Doughnut Mix because it may contain an undeclared allergen, wheat. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to wheat (which contains gluten) may risk serious allergic reaction if t
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/06/2024)

El Chilar Rodriguez LLC. Issues Voluntary Recall of El Chilar Ground Cinnamon "Canela Molida" Due to Elevated Lead Levels

El Chilar Rodriguez LLC of Apopka, FL is recalling 127 cases (12 bags/case) of El Chilar Ground Cinnamon "Canela Molida" (1.25 oz bag), because it may contain traces of lead.
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/06/2024)

Colonna Brothers, Inc. Issues a Voluntary Recall for "1.5oz Marcum Ground Cinnamon & 2.25oz Supreme Tradition Ground Cinnamon" Because of Possible Health Risk Due to Elevated Lead Levels

Colonna Brothers of North Bergen, NJ is recalling its 1.5oz Marcum Ground Cinnamon & 2.25oz Supreme Tradition Ground Cinnamon because of a possible health risk due to elevated lead levels. Short term exposures to very low levels of lead may not elicit any symptoms. It is possible that increased bloo
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/06/2024)

Expanded Press Release - Kalo Foods, LLC Recalls Single Slice Carrot Cake and Chocolate Cake Due to Undeclared Soy Allergen

KALO Foods, LLC is recalling Single Slice Carrot Cake UPC 8 53407 00418 4 and Single Slice Chocolate Cake UPC 8 53407 00418 4 due to a undeclared soy.
Image of United States seal. United States   (03/05/2024)

Raja Foods Skokie, IL Is Recalling "Swad Brand Cinnamon Powder 3.5OZ Retail Packs" for Possible Lead Contamination

Raja Foods LLC of Skokie, Il is recalling its 3.5 ounce package of "SWAD CINNAMON POWDER" because it has the potential to be contaminated with lead.