New Baja California Governor Sworn In, The Political Legacy Of Prop. 187, Can Factory-Built Apartments Solve California’s Housing Crisis? Get Better Zzz’s
KPBS Midday Edition / November 4, 2019
Baja California has a new governor. Jaime Bonilla was sworn into office Friday and he’s vowing to end cross-border sewage flows within six months. 25 years ago, California voters approved Prop. 187, an anti-immigrant initiative with ties to San Diego and long-lasting political implications. Also, more developers are turning to factory-built housing to help address California’s housing crisis. But will it work? Daylight Saving Time is over and the time change can mess with your sleep pattern. Science writer Henry Nicholls shares his tips for how to get a good night’s sleep.
Speaker 1: 00:01 Baja California has a new governor with a new agenda. How prop one 87 has changed California in the last 25 years. I'm wearing Cavenaugh and I'm Jade Hindman. This is KPBS midday edition. It's Monday, November 4th November marked a shift in the leadership of Baja California. Friday hommie Bonia was sworn into office as governor with big promises to address issues like poverty and cross border sewage flows. His new leadership has been met with criticism. Joining us to talk more about it is Wendy fry who's been covering this for the San Diego union Tribune. Wendy, welcome.
Speaker 2: 00:48 Hi. Thanks for having me.
Speaker 1: 00:50 First, can you tell us a bit about governor hommie Binya? Who is he and what did he run on?
Speaker 2: 00:55 So he is sort of a cross border figure, a politician who served in office and both on both sides of the border formally with the Senate in the Baja California. And then he also served as the director of the OTI water district here in Chula Vista. And uh, he's also very closely aligned with president, the current president of Mexico. Politically, they're friends, they've been friends for a long time. And their political ideology is similar
Speaker 1: 01:21 and Binya won the election by what could be described as a landslide, right?
Speaker 2: 01:26 Yeah, absolutely. [inaudible] there was very low voter turnout, but he was, yeah, I think around 30 points ahead of his, his nearest challenger, Oscar Vega. So yeah.
Speaker 1: 01:35 Hmm. In his first speech as governor, he spoke about stopping raw sewage from flowing into Imperial beach. What is he proposing? How is he going to do that?
Speaker 2: 01:43 Great. So that's been a priority. Even that the president, Andres Manuel Lopez, Obrador and Jaime have been talking about, even before [inaudible] was in office, we've been talking about what a priority that is because I, they sort of feel like it's an embarrassment to Mexico that they have this problem that's affecting another country and affecting Imperial beach. And so what they want to do is get the, get the source system working well for Rosarito and for the beach communities in Baja, California so that this problem doesn't happen on either side of the border
Speaker 1: 02:16 and he's, he's committed to doing that within six months.
Speaker 2: 02:19 That's what he said in his, in his inaugural speech. Yes.
Speaker 1: 02:22 Yeah. That seems like a pretty short timeframe to fix a problem that has a played the area for years. You do you think that's realistic?
Speaker 2: 02:29 We'll have to wait. We'll have to watch and see. I, I know one of the problems that's been happening in Baja, California is that there's different on the different levels of government, municipal, state and federal. There's different political parties in charge, but now it's all synergized into one. They're all the same Marina political party and sometimes, uh, the different parties sort of fight each other over our priorities. But now that we're seeing them all in one political party, maybe we'll see a lot more cooperation between the different levels of government because they're all on the same. And so we'll have to wait and see if that gets things moving.
Speaker 1: 03:07 Does he hope that his experience at the OTI water district and his relationships on this side of the border, we'll be valuable in, in finding solutions to the sewage problem?
Speaker 2: 03:16 Right. I think he's, he's a very rare and that he's one of the very few politicians on either side of the border that I know that have those ties to both governments. I'm at a state federal, local level on both sides of the border. So we definitely understand how politics works very well in Mexico and very well in, in California.
Speaker 1: 03:37 And so what are some of the other promises he made in his speech that stood out to you?
Speaker 2: 03:41 His speech was a lot about services, increasing the services and taking the money that is paid to the government and putting it back to the people. So he made the promise that all kids are going to start having a hot breakfast. Um, and that's something that, that he has already started working on with a former school teacher from national city. She's going to be a lazy liaison to the United States from the D for, which is like the CPS agency, the child protection agency, uh, in Baja and they're going to work on making sure all students get fed at school like they do over here. We think that is like obviously kids are going to get fed at school, but that doesn't always happen in Baja California. They don't always have a hot meal for the day. And um, so that's one of the things that he's gonna work on. And he just talked a lot about in other areas, public safety, transportation, increasing those services to the residents of Tijuana.
Speaker 1: 04:34 And also in 2018 a record high of 2,500 people were killed in Tijuana. Baja California is most populated city as he talked about ways that he'd like to address rising homicide rates.
Speaker 2: 04:45 Great. And we just had a bloody weekend this weekend too with several executions throughout the city as well. So it's obviously a continuing problem. It's been a problem for a long time. The violence is definitely the top concern of most residents. I think one of the new strategies that they are talking about is increasing and addressing the judicial system. So increasing the number of judges that you want to has right now, like Mexicali has 28 or 24 judges and to want to only has 12 and so that slows down the justice system and sort of sometimes let people operate with impunity, with the violence. And so that's one of the things that they're, they're looking at doing.
Speaker 1: 05:22 Governor Binya is from the president's Morena party. How is this shift playing out given that the pond party has held power in Baja for the last 30 years?
Speaker 2: 05:31 Great. So the a huge shift. There's all the normal that you would expect when a new administration comes in. They're sort of airing all the dirty laundry from the previous administration. So we're getting a lot of information about the budget and they say that a lot of money is missing from the state budget. And so that's one of the shifts that's happening. And then the other shifts, like I talked about, I don't think that we've ever seen in Baja California where the federal government matches the state government, the political party of the state government, which matches the political party of the mythical government. And uh, in Mexico, those, those parties work very much against each other. If they're on opposite sides of, you know, they, they don't cooperate very well if there, if there's, um, the pan is in charge of the state government and the PRI is in charge of the federal government, there's going to be tension and fighting there. As far as getting things done,
Speaker 3: 06:22 I've been speaking with Wendy fry watchdog and accountability reporter with the San Diego union Tribune. Wendy, thank you very much for joining us.
Speaker 2: 06:29 Absolutely.
Speaker 3: 06:34 One way to look at California politics is before prop one 87 and after prop one 87, the proposition dubbed the save our state initiative was aimed at prohibiting people living in California illegally from receiving medical, educational and other social services after it passed by a whopping margin. Most of the initiative was blocked by the courts. Nevertheless, prop one 87 had a powerful impact, just probably not the one that supporters intended. This Friday marks the 25th anniversary of the passage of proposition one 87 and a new Los Angeles times podcast by columnists. Gustavo Ariano tells the story of the initiative. It's called the battle of one 87 and Gustavo, welcome to the program. Good. I says for having me, no, right off the bat in the podcast you say there are questions about prop one 87 that have bugged you for years. What are some of those questions?
Speaker 3: 07:32 I wanted to know the rationale that it's supporters or its creators had in creating one 87 I also wanted to know the particular's, like why the name save our state. I also wanted to hear from the people whose lives were radically transformed by one 87 the politicians and the principles and the founders of nonprofits and also just how one 87 has played out in these past 25 years. It's a really remarkable story that explains, in my opinion, at least why California is at the place we're at, where we have a super majority of Democrats in both in the state legislature, in both the assembly and the state Senate. Now you track down the people who actually came up with the idea for this initiative. Talk about some of the cast of characters that had a role in shaping this proposition. I ended up interviewing over 50 people for my podcast, but we shrink it to like the best characters.
Speaker 3: 08:25 So you have to start off with Barbara and Bob Kiley. They were political consultants who helped out with the one 87 campaign. A Barbara at the time was a mayor of your Belinda wealthy city here in orange County and what was remarkable about them is their candour. They said flat out, we didn't know there was a problem with illegal immigration in California until our friend Ron Prince one day, uh, goes out to a grocery store asking for signatures for a ballot initiative. Apparently it was something that he would do a lot and he would always fail except for illegal immigration. It completely took off. That's how one of these several was created. It was created as a favor to a friend, Barbara and Bob Kiley said, well you're our friend. Uh, we might as well connect you to some people we know they just happen to be former ins officials and anti-immigrant hardliners, uh, activists who were in orange County at the time.
Speaker 3: 09:11 If you remember the prop one 87 campaign, its official name was SA save our state. It was called the save our state initiative. So I asked them, where did you come up with the name, save our state. And they said flat out. Yeah, after four Margarita's at El Torito. Well you know, you hear from your podcast as well how San Diego played a central role in the characters. Who behind this this initiative? Oh yeah. I mean I, I this podcast is only an hour. I wish I could have gone on so much. Of course San Diego is so huge on the issue because the borders right there in San Ysidro. And so one of the big characters is Peter Nunez. Peter Nunez was the us attorney or U S attorney general down there in the San Diego area during the late eighties. When you were seeing a lot of undocumented immigration crossing through in what used to be called the soccer field, where they would, uh, where a lot of undocumented immigrants would be waiting for the night to fall and then they would just cross a border.
Speaker 3: 10:04 So Peter Nunez paints to scenario, which are, you know, a lot of people who would say they're for undocumented immigrants would, the scenario he paints out is like hundreds, if not thousands of immigrants crossing the line. It's almost a party on the other side of the U S Mexico border. That's actually what was happening, especially those of you heard down there in San Diego during the late eighties and early nineties and he ends up joining Barbara and Bob Kiley to create the one 87 campaign. And of course our former mayor Pete Wilson. Oh yeah. And so Pete Wilson of course, is a big character in this, uh, in this podcast. I never got a chance to talk to him. We have been in communication for over two months. Hopefully an interview will happen and if it happens, it will be a bonus episode with Pete Wilson. Though, as I say in the podcast, one question I'll never ask him if I ever talked to him is do you regret supporting one 87 because he has steadfastly stood by his support 25 years later, even as a state went from the Republican stronghold that he was, uh, that he headed and of course won reelection in 1994 due in large part to his supportive one 87 to the super majority progressive democratic stronghold that we have today in Sacramento.
Speaker 3: 11:10 So you see a connection, uh, and, and direct connection between proposition one 87 and the kind of very heavily blue state, California is now. What's interesting is that in the past couple of years, there's been a counter narrative to this, but for the past 25 years, a conventional wisdom on the political sphere, say that one 87 created a generation of voters, Latinos who went Democrat. Other people say, well, actually you started seeing an Exodus of these middle-class Republican voters from San Diego County, orange County. You know, people used to work in the defense industry and moved out, but one of the things that I did for my podcast was actually talk to these people. If you talk to the people who run Sacramento now, especially the Latinos, they'll all say one 87 was the marker for me. It was the inspiration that I needed to get involved into elected office. So in episode three I excerpt a video that the California Latino legislative caucus did and just released this past Friday.
Speaker 4: 12:06 Dear governor Wilson, 25 years ago this month, you ran for reelection by stoking nativist spheres about immigration.
Speaker 3: 12:15 Where are they? Thank Pete Wilson. They say, Hey, governor Wilson, thank you for running the Xeno phobic campaign. 25 years ago
Speaker 4: 12:21 you said California had to be saved from my mom, from my dad, from my mother and father. You said California had to be saved from our neighbors, our friends, our families.
Speaker 3: 12:30 People could say, no one 87 didn't change California. But talk to the people who run it today. And very few people want to acknowledge what they have to say. So what's the similarity between the debate over prop one 87 and the immigration debate playing out today with the border wall and the policies coming out of this white house? That's a double edged sword that I also examine is on one hand when he's seven is painted nowadays as this parable don't anger Latino voters because they'll become super democratic and run the state. On the other hand though, opponents of illegal immigration, they took one 87 as inspiration to start crafting their own laws on the local and stay in eventually national level. And this paved the road for president Trump to be able to spout the nativist rhetoric or specifically against illegal immigration that he has made a hallmark of his campaign.
Speaker 3: 13:19 This entire idea of building a wall of cracking down on chain migration. It's a direct line from when 87 all the way to today. So aside from the ways you've talked about one 87 transforming California, you've said it changed you to how so? So in 1994 around around this time, actually 25 years ago, there were student walkouts all across California, tens of thousands of students from San Diego all the way to San Francisco and beyond. At my high school, Anaheim high on lunchtime, and I talk about this in the podcast almost by entire school walked out. I chose not to though because I was too afraid I, I was opposed to one 87 my dad had come to this country in the trunk of a Chevy and by about, at this point, 50 years ago. So I was opposed to one 87 but I was just too scared to do anything about it.
Speaker 3: 14:05 But that shame of not walking out, it stuck with me for years until finally in 1999 I was able to have an opportunity to address a school board that wanted to Sue Mexico for $50 million for educating the children of illegal immigrants. And ever since then I've been trying to make up for me, not walking out. Like if people don't like my work, they could blame one 87 because at the end I, my entire career has been a repudiation of cowardly me as a sophomore in Anaheim high 25 years ago, I've been speaking with Gustavo Ariano, Los Angeles times columnist and host of the new podcast, the battle of one 87 that's by the LA times and Futuro studios. Gustavo. Thank you. [inaudible] tune in Wednesday for a one hour statewide call in special prop one
Speaker 5: 14:52 87 25 years later. That's at 11:00 AM right here on Wednesday on KPBS.
Speaker 6: 15:04 [inaudible]
Speaker 5: 15:10 want an out of the box solution to California's housing crisis. Think Legos. Really, really big Legos. Some California companies believe they can build apartment buildings cheaper and faster by assembling them in a factory and stacking them on site. One factory made building was erected last month in Oakland in just 10 days as part of our California dream collaboration. Cal matters reporter Matt Levin has the story.
Speaker 6: 15:38 Yeah,
Speaker 7: 15:39 so you're at station one. This is where we actually build the floor of the residential unit. Larry Pace is giving me a tour of a construction site, kind of. We're in a 258,000 square foot factory in Valeho on the outskirts of the Bay area. They used to build submarines here during world war II and they build one floor approximately every two and a half hours. It's fast picture one of those general motors plants in Detroit where a car is put together in an assembly line except instead of a Buick and a conveyor belt. Carpenters and hardhats and goggles are assembling 156 unit apartment building for development in Oakland once it goes to station two then we do the mechanical, electrical and plumbing rough. There's a station for cabinets and a station for roofing and a station for toilets all the way through station 33 which looks like a furniture showroom, not quite ready for the floor paces.
Speaker 8: 16:33 Founder of factory LS, a modular housing manufacturer that opened this plant last year. They're just one of several companies in California and across the country trying to revolutionize how we make housing in particular unit. You're getting a washer, dryer unit or refrigerator arrange in a microwave. It's pretty good. I don't have an in unit washer dryer. Well you would if you lived here. Piece has been working in the construction industry for 40 years. He used to do what's called stick construction. That conventional method where you prep the foundation and then you wait for the carpenters and then the plumbers and then the electricians. So we believe that without a shadow of a doubt we can demonstrate there's at least a 20% savings to your overall construction budget. But the idea of building homes in a factory has been around for a while,
Speaker 9: 17:15 which brings us to the real problem providing housing for that many new people each year. We just haven't been building that much.
Speaker 8: 17:24 That's an infomercial from the department of housing and urban development from the early seventies at the time the Nixon administration was facing problems that might sound eerily familiar to today's
Speaker 9: 17:34 California needed was a way to eliminate or minimize these constraints to home-building a way to break through them a new way of dealing things, a housing breakthrough.
Speaker 8: 17:46 Alex Anderson is a professor of architecture at the of Washington. Operation breakthrough was really a big and pretty expensive failure and really quite an embarrassment for the, for the Nixon administration. HUD spent 190 million trying to get private companies to jumpstart factory built apartments and single family homes. Much of the housing ended up being uninhabitable after a few years and Congress pulled the plug pretty quickly. Modular housing technology has improved a lot since the early seventies but Anderson says issues that confounded operation breakthrough still haunt the industry to this day have been all kinds of interesting experiments, but not a lot of economic successes in this part of the market. Factory LS is confident. This time will be different. For one, the sticker price in these apartments will be market rate 3,704 this is a two bedroom unit. Jessica Goldbacher is the project manager at the first factory, a West project that's actually standing. We're in that furniture showroom from that last station in the factory except now it's on the fourth floor in Oakland.
Speaker 5: 18:47 I think what's different about what this is is we can make a whole building basically erect in 10 days.
Speaker 8: 18:54 That's how long it took cranes to stack these apartments. This summer gold box has that produces economies of scale. You can build thousands of apartments a year, not just single family homes. Housing experts say in the long run, building housing more quickly will eventually cool California's sizzling housing market. Whether modular housing can turn the long run into a sprint remains an open question.
Speaker 5: 19:16 Johnny May is Cal matters reporter Matt Levin and Matt, welcome to the program. Thanks for having me. Can you explain a bit more how these prefabricated housing projects are put together? I'm thinking to the various apartment units come in pre-packaged modules.
Speaker 8: 19:33 Uh, they basically build every apartment unit, um, from scratch. Uh, it really does look like a, uh, gigantic, uh, general motors plant where they're, uh, they start with the floor of a apartment and then they add some cabinetry and then they add the roofing and they have a bunch of stations that, um, build specific parts of an individual unit. And then after 33 stations, you pretty have, you pretty much have something that kind of looks like a Ikea showroom, not quite ready for Ikea. Um, then they shrink wrap that basically and ship it to the, uh, construction site or what they call it, the assembly site.
Speaker 5: 20:12 This would limit the need for a lot of construction workers. So I can see why the unions aren't crazy about this. How is the prefab industry handling that problem?
Speaker 8: 20:21 So factory EOS, which is the company I profiled in the piece, they have one union on board, the carpenter's union, which basically represents everybody in their factory. You know, their argument to the unions is, Hey, this is going to be the future. Better to get on board now than to fight this. And they've had some limited success with that. Um, the, uh, some of the other trades are pretty fiercely opposed to housing. Uh, the plumber's union in the Bay area, not a big fan. Some factory build housing makers have been able to get some unions on board.
Speaker 5: 20:56 You know, since so many of the mass produced things that we buy are already assembled like this, like your example of automobiles, why has housing prefabrication run into so many of the problems that you told us about in your report?
Speaker 8: 21:09 So economies of scale is the biggest issue. It costs a lot of money to set up a factory, especially one as high tech and just physically large as the one a factory O S has in the Bay area. And so you have to produce a lot of units, you have to build a lot of apartment buildings, um, for it too, you know, quote unquote pencil out and a factory made housing just hasn't achieved that economies of scale even though it seems like such a intuitive solution to some of the construction problems. California has.
Speaker 5: 21:40 How much of a cost differences there between constructing a multiunit apartment, the usual way and the factory made units.
Speaker 8: 21:48 So there was a UC Berkeley study about this and they estimate that on average, and obviously it will, it will depend project to project and geographic area to geographic area. But on average you could save about 20% on like an individual apartment unit. Um, so another way of saying that is factory built housing could be 20% cheaper on average and 40 to 50% quicker. Um, to build those two things are obviously related. The quicker you build it, the cheaper it is. Um, but that's the potential whether those savings actually do materialize is another question.
Speaker 5: 22:24 So, okay. It looks like the developers will be getting a big break in cost, but why should we assume that they'll pass that on to renters? Apparently that hasn't happened so far.
Speaker 8: 22:34 So that's a very, very good question. They've certainly marketed these apartments as we're going to build these cheaper and as a result, the consumer will benefit their factory EOS. Their very first um, market rate apartment building in, in the Bay area is charging pretty much the same amount as any other market rate apartment building that I'm now opening. It's about $3,700 for a, for a one bedroom apartment, which is, you know, pretty, pretty expensive. They also say they are moving more into a subsidized affordable housing, housing for people experiencing homelessness, um, where they don't have to satisfy some of their investor demands and they can build those cheaper. Um, and pass along the savings to local governments.
Speaker 5: 23:21 Now having a multiunit structure built, as you say in 10 days is a radical change to what, you know, we're used to in California. Is the prefab concept being supported by government or is it running into obstacles there as well?
Speaker 8: 23:36 So some local governments are definitely on board and they see this as a solution to make housing for people experiencing homelessness cheaper. So a San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angeles, they've all placed orders, um, for permanent supportive housing with factory made, um, housing providers. Um, so in Los Angeles for example, there was a recent estimate that it costs $500,000 to create one unit of permanent supportive housing. Uh, they are hoping to get that number down if they use factory built housing. So in that sense there is government support in terms of, um, tax breaks or things along those lines. I haven't seen that, um, really materialize.
Speaker 10: 24:20 Did you see any of the finished products, the apartments themselves and I'm wondering that would you like to live in one?
Speaker 8: 24:28 Um, so I saw one that was mostly done this market rate apartment in Oakland. It's not, it's not fully completed, but you know, it's got a pretty much everything I could squat in it. I guess if they let me right now, I think the question is priced. There was nothing about the apartment that I said, you know, this was built in a factory and I can tell right, so aesthetically like it looks, you know, pretty much like any other apartment that the key question is price. I mean for $3,700 a, I don't know if I could really afford that.
Speaker 10: 25:03 I hear you. I've been speaking with Cal matters reporter Matt Levin. Matt, thanks a lot.
Speaker 8: 25:08 Thank you so much.
Speaker 10: 25:16 As a girl growing up in post world war II, Cuba Oliva S been dreamed about being a Saint. Even as she became a professor and author of several books dealing with feminist psychology. She never lost her interest in and admiration of the female heroes of the church. Now, San Diego state women's studies professor as being has turned her attention to that very subject and her upcoming book, women sainthood and power, a feminist psychology of cultural constructions. Professor SPN joins us now. Professor, welcome. Hello. What interested you about women's saints at such an early age? Well, you know, as a little girl growing up back there on then, there were not too many female heroes. So I would say it was Madame Curie and the saints. And it was interesting to hear stories of women who had done more or less extraordinary things in the middle of all their stories that included men or boys or whatever.
Speaker 10: 26:17 So, you know, it was interesting to have these female heroes. At some point you realize the women's saints weren't exactly who you were told they were. I know Teresa of Abila was one who stood out. What did you learn about the women's saints that you didn't know before? As that little girl that nones had the school and every thing around it was talking about, you know, they were good and obedient and did while they were told to do, because of course they, they were trying to encourage us to do exactly that. So as an adult, as a professor of women's studies, when we started looking at lives of women in general and the things in lives of women that have been hidden or not understood clearly or basically I started rereading first that I saw and then things about the others are by the others and realizing that they had in fact been very self-affirming and rebellious women who kept saying sometimes to great danger what they believe was true on what they believe was right.
Speaker 10: 27:30 So it was sort of a rediscovery of my childhood heroes from a different perspective. Did you look at them as even bigger heroes once you learned more about them? In a way, yes. I mean, but also as women of their times because some of the things they did look a little weird to us. Like, why would she want to not eat or torture her body or, or let himself be burned or whatever. So we have to understand them in their cultural context. You focus on two women saints from Latin America and how they've used their bodies to access to the divine. Can you tell us more about that? They are in a long line of medieval saints and although they are not exactly medieval because it's after the conquest of Latin America, culturally, the religion that came to Latin America was still very medieval while the reformation was going on in Europe.
Speaker 10: 28:32 So they follow a long line of medieval women saints who were able to find their authority in these control of their bodies. I mean it sort of went like women, other bodies and they cannot control their bodies. And if these women can control their bodies, it must be because God is helping them. So somehow by self torturing, they showed that God was on their side and therefore was, were able to speak in public about these kinds of things. And there's a long line, as I said, Catherine of Sienna is part of that. And many others also. Yeah. Can you tell us about the clash between feminism and religion and how you deal with that? There is snow clash between feminism and religion if you understand religion. I mean, I'm talking of course about the Christian perspective in this case, if you have any belief in that, and you look at the scriptures, you see that Jesus treated women on a very equal basis.
Speaker 10: 29:51 Very concretely, the first person he told he was the Messiah was the Samaritan woman by the, well, the first person who saw him after resurrection was Mary Magdalen and he commissioned her to go talk to the male apostles about, um, that, so the, the actual scripture, the snot contradict it. It's just the authorities, that patriarchal authorities that create their own, I would say distortion of the Jesus message that create a clash. So for me, I've never felt at clash with the actual message. I've felt, felt that with the authorities and, and the distortions of that message that fit prejudices more than anything else. So there's a truth in the message that you found. Absolutely. So what is the overall message you want people to take from this book? I think what I want is for them to look at these role models and in a way you don't have to be Christian or Catholic or to take them as your role models. These are, I don't know if I can use the term feminist because he didn't exist then, but the w the swear like brought the feminist in a way. Women who, who started saying we have the right to be or, or this is how I see my connection with God and women's possibilities for connecting with God. So I want whoever reads the book to have a sense that it's possible to do that from your own cultural context to get to God, to get to self realization to however you want to define that for yourself. Okay.
Speaker 5: 32:01 I've been speaking with Oliva S bean, author of the book, women sainthood and power that will be released on November 15th professor, thank you very much. Thank you.
Speaker 6: 32:20 [inaudible]
Speaker 5: 32:23 who owns the coastline? We go now to Santa Barbara County. We're advocates for public beach access are celebrating what may be the end to a decades long battle over an exclusive stretch of coastline reporters. Stephanie O'Neill, more on a new law designed to open up the pristine beaches at Hollister ranch by 2022
Speaker 10: 32:47 California law says beaches along the States coast belonged to the people. But good luck trying to get onto those here at the Hollister ranch. Hi there. Any chance I can get onto the land at all? Were you trying to go down to the water just to see it and come back out and send back there as a private private? Yeah, to get in. I'd have to be invited by a landowner or be willing to paddle a treacherous two miles by sea, like 21 year old surfer Justin hight him up. I met him as he and his friends were about to attempt that journey for a second day in a row. How long were you out trying to get there? Yesterday? About seven hours yesterday and uh, probably be a similar time today for the journey. The nearly 15,000 acre Hollister ranch is carved into mostly 100 acre parcels owned by surfers and celebrities.
Speaker 10: 33:35 Many drawn here by it's legendary waves and for nearly four decades landowners here have fought to keep the public out. Susan Jordan heads the nonprofit California coastal protection network and she's among public access advocates who've been saying enough is enough. They've enjoyed a privilege that they were actually not entitled to for 40 years and I really think it's time for them to recognize it's time to comply with the law. Governor Gavin Newsome agrees he signed a bill to open up some beaches at Hollister ranch starting in April, 2022 the law also instructs the coastal commission and other state agencies to create an access plan for the full eight and a half miles of Hollister ranch coast. And it says they should use their full authority, including eminent domain to make that happen. But Hollister ranch land owners say their stewardship is why the coast is pristine. They do allow some tours and fear opening to the public at large will trash the beaches. Attorney Marcia Tillo disagrees. It is not the kind of place where we want to just throw open public access like any other beach in Southern California. Shatila Tillo represents the Gaviota coastal trail Alliance, which has been battling the Hollister owners and he trusts the state to create an ecologically sensitive plan. The land owners meanwhile said in an emailed statement, they're disappointed. Newsome signed the public access bill and they predict the courts will find it unconstitutional should they challenge the new law. I'm Stephanie O'Neill in Santa Barbara County.
Speaker 5: 35:10 In theory, we should all be well rested after the time change gave us that extra hour this weekend, but it seems that a lot of us need more than one extra hour. The centers for disease control and prevention says about one in three Americans are chronically sleep deprived and 20% of Americans suffer from a sleep disorder. There's a lot about sleep that remains a mystery, especially for those who suffer from rare forms of sleep disorders like narcolepsy. That conditions spurred writer Henry Nichols to find out what science has to say about getting a good night's rest. He joined me via Skype to talk about his book, sleepy head, the neuroscience of a good night's rest. And here's that interview. And Henry, welcome to the program.
Speaker 11: 35:56 Great. It'd be worthy.
Speaker 5: 35:57 You've been diagnosed with narcolepsy, a sleep disorder that still not well known among the general public. What kinds of symptoms did you experience?
Speaker 11: 36:06 So most people will probably know it's to do with too much sleep. That's the principle symptom is excessive daytime sleepiness, but it comes with a four, five, six other symptoms that are recognized by clinicians, including something amazing called cataplexy, which is where an emotion will cause you to collapse. It looks like you've fallen asleep or it looks like you've died, but in fact you're completely conscious. Just your muscles were paralyzed in exactly the same way as they are during dreaming sleep. Um, then you have sleep paralysis, which a lot of people would be familiar with. This is where you, you've actually woken up. Now you are in your bedroom, you know that it's now no longer sleep, but you cannot move. And it's terrifying. This is the same physiological state, in fact. So your muscles are paralyzed in that terror. Your brain creates these hallucinations, images that uh, kind of commensurate with the fear you're experiencing.
Speaker 11: 37:08 So it's just about the most terrifying thing that you can possibly imagine. And then in fact in Sonia as well, narcolepsy, you know, people often say, Oh I wish I had narcolepsy because then I'd be sleeping well no. Okay, let me just get that clear. Narcolepsy is really not good sleep. You might be sleeping a little bit more than normal, but none of the sleep of someone with narcolepsy is purposely bits, incredibly fractured. You typically wake up 30 times a night and very, very rarely you get the deep sleep that that we all need to function. So it's a, it's a sleep disorder of too much sleep and too little sleep simultaneously. And then there is actually no paradox there. It's just not a pleasant experience.
Speaker 5: 38:00 Treatments available for narcolepsy.
Speaker 11: 38:03 There are a bunch of treatments that they used to sort of patch together someone with narcolepsy, but none of them is particularly targeted at the actual problem. So there is a loss of neurons that occurs in most cases of narcolepsy as a result of an altered immune attack, so that means your body was fighting an infection. It's usually something like the flu and it takes out all the pathogens and it's doing its job, but in the process takes out a tiny population of incredibly important cells in the center of the brain and there's really no way to get those back.
Speaker 5: 38:44 Now in the, in your book sleepy head, you talk about a range of sleep disorders like sleep apnea, chronic insomnia and sleep deprivation. Do all of these sleep disorders have common effects on a person's life and health?
Speaker 11: 39:00 That was really one of the most interesting things for me was to explore the whole landscape of sleep disorders. I could have just focused on narcolepsy and ran a whole book about that and was a bit anxious about taking on these other ones. Things like sleep apnea or insomnia, restless leg syndrome, but the connections between them are very real and where they all, what they already have in common is sleep deprivation. So any kind of sleep disorder, even narcolepsy where you seem to be sleeping too much is in fact a kind of sleep deprivation. You suddenly in a high risk category for mental health disorders and then serious, serious physical damage including a increased risk of obesity and type two diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke. And um, it's, it's, that's not even as a mentioning of the increased risk of car accidents and all those sorts of things.
Speaker 5: 40:04 Andrea, is there an ongoing debate over the function of sleep and what happens when we sleep? What you researchers agree on and where is there still disagreement?
Speaker 11: 40:13 Uh, pretty much everywhere. Um, that was one thing I made a point of was asking most people I interviewed what sleep was about. In fact, I felt silly re me asking that, but I'm glad I did because you just got an answer. But quite often it was a different answer. And these are people at the top of their game whose, whose careers are researching sleep. And if you're getting a different answer from these people, it means two things we don't really know yet. But also, and probably more importantly sleepers performing many, many functions. And the key take home here, I mean, I could list them, it gets a bit boring as things like replenishing your transmitters with creating, strengthening connections between neurons and paring back connections between other ones, removing metabolites and lots of functions. Getting on like this. The key things a take home is it's an incredibly active time for the brain.
Speaker 5: 41:11 Now, eh, I mean, anyone listening to this can hear that this book sleepy head goes into a lot of very complicated matters when it comes to sleep and sleep disorders. But I wonder, do you include any advice perhaps for the people listening who may not have a sleep disorder but perhaps feel like they could get better sleep than they? So I,
Speaker 11: 41:34 I've sort of written off my sleep has, I can't get the neurons back that I've lost. And I and I thought, right, I, there's nothing I can do about my dysfunctional sleep. Actually the revelation for me was, well of course there are other things that are affecting your sleep and making it even worse. So I think everybody can work and still work. Even if you think you've got great sleep, it is an ongoing project, so the real advices, try to maintain the same bed time and wake time through the week and we can, if you start to get into this cycle and getting up still at the same time, at the weekends you will realize just a much greater level of functioning, not just at the weekend but continually through the week and then obviously doing silly things like taking a phone into the bedroom or having a TV in the bedroom.
Speaker 11: 42:30 None of that because all of those are risk factors, but where apart from the light that you're exposing yourself to in, in, in the dark and late at night, these are risk factors for insomnia. So anything that's going to keep your weight while you're in the bedroom is a dangerous thing because you start to build up associations and you sold to your brain. You enter the bedroom trying to sleep, but your brain has now learned, Oh, this is the place I'm awakened. And so you just lie there away. So you've got to focus on the bedroom as a place for sleep. Um, you made sure you, you know, look out for any snoring, uh, and possibility you might have for sleep apnea. You've got to get that sorted. I've been speaking with Henry Nichols, author of sleepy head, the newer science of a good night's rest. Henry, thank you so much. Thank you.