Court Jester’s Class of 2000

Written by Harold Brown. Posted in Opinion, Politics

Published on July 25, 2009 with 13 Comments

h. brown
Photos by Luke Thomas

By Harold Brown

July 25, 2009

D-2’s Gavin Newsom

Presently the Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco and a leading candidate for the position of Governor of the State of California.


Gavin is a numb nuts cardboard cut-out who can’t think on his feet. His only values are his own image and money. He has no friends who are not on the payroll of the Downtown cabal that created him.

Gavin Newsom

D-5’s Matt Gonzalez

Presently he heads his own law firm, Gonzalez and Leigh, headquartered in an architecturally and artistically resplendent converted factory near the Downtown waterfront. If you get a chance to visit, dig the decor by Matt of the half block long legal eagle nest. He ventured out to run for Vice President of the United States as his friend Ralph Nader’s running mate.


Gonzalez is a genius on too many levels to deal with outside of a biography. While Newsom came in as a machine appointee decrying the very district elections that put him in City Hall, Gonzalez was busy giving San Francisco the highest minimum wage in the country (good, cause Newsom’s handlers were/are intent upon making it the most expensive place to live in the country) … Gonzo gave us the highest minimum wage and he placed restrictions upon …

Matt Gonzalez

D-11’s Gerardo Sandoval

Just call him ‘Your honor’ if you don’t mind. Newly (and forever to be) elected Superior Court Judge.

Gerardo Sandoval

D-8’s Mark Leno

He’s the State Senator for the eastern portion of San Francisco. He is and will always be a toadie for Downtown business interests (check out his latest effort to give away the largest park in the black Bay View to the out-of-town Lennar) … but, Mark is very affable and always has a wonderful tan.

Mark Leno

D-4’s Leland Yee

The State Senator for the Southwestern neighborhoods of San Francisco. Yee is an opportunistic swine who lies like a carpet.

Leland Yee

D-9’s Tom Ammiano

We don’t know what Harvey Milk could have done had he not been assassinated. I do know he’d have had to work some long hours to match what Ammiano has done for SF and Queers world-wide. Not just Queer issues.

Tom brought back district elections which gave a voice back to the neighborhoods. He gave San Francisco the first Universal Health Care of any city in the United States. And on, and on.

Tom is a rookie State Assembly member representing San Francisco.

Tom Ammiano

D-3’s Aaron Peskin

Aaron is head of the local Democratic party’s Central committee and has some kind of firm that handles water rights for Indians in an area where present D-3 supe, David Chiu’s company advocated for a nuclear waste dump.

Peskin gave every piece of land he could to his wealthy friends from the first day he joined the Board. The fact that most Progressives consider him to be one of them is a matter of hilarity. Chiu’s the same only smarter.

Aaron Peskin

D-7’s Tony Hall

He’s a retired grandpa with a brood of kids and many stories to tell. Although he held office as a Democrat, his values are those I’ve always associated with moderate Republicans. A fiscal conservative at all times he nevertheless joined with Prog Super-star, Matt Gonzalez, in convincing the voters to take back a share of the power of the SF ‘strong mayor’ system. The people got a voice on the Planning Commission and the Police Commission and the Board of Appeals and the Elections Commission and the Department of Building Inspections, and more.

Tony Hall

D-1’s Jake McGoldrick

He’s a retired grandpa with a brood of kids.

Jake McGoldrick

D-10’s Sophie Maxwell

Sophie’s still a sitting supervisor but terms out with the last other remaining member of my Class of 2000 in January 2011. She seems to have garnered some real estate over the years as she’s begun to recuse herself on votes that pertain to renters. When she ran in 2000 she was a union electrician. I doubt she’ll have to go back to that. She’s been a real friend to developers wanting to tweak projects in any neighborhood for the last few years and I’m betting she’ll get some consultant work.

Sophie Maxwell

D-6’s Chris Daly

Here’s the kid in the motorcycle jacket. Still a sitting Supe, he’s fought the rich and the monied interests so hard for so long that he may be virtually unemployable in SF when he finishes up in January 2011. Newsom hatchet man, Eric Jaye, has done everything within his power to destroy Daly for the last decade and I seriously doubt that’s ever gonna end. Or, respect county boundaries.

Chris is not going to get elected judge and he’s no lawyer anyway. His reputation has been so tarred and feathered over his political career that he probably can’t win a City-wide office. Now, anyway. But, he’s so young and so smart and charismatic and gifted. He was 28 when he was elected. He’ll be only 38 and with 10 years of intense political experience. A place to run again?

State or national campaigns take too much money. Besides, Leno and Ammiano have the local state offices sewn up for the next decade. But, Fairfield? Chris mentioned last evening over a couple of drinks and some rock and roll music with me and Luke Thomas that Fairfield had more black people than San Francisco. He didn’t expand (they’re a big part of his base) and neither I nor the Fog City boss asked but … he has to have looked at the offices and office holders in his area.

He could certainly cover the SF political scene better than anyone (including me) working for any publication. He didn’t just sit around, he learned all the details and knows absolutely everyone. He’d make some TV station a hell of a political anchor/consultant.

My thoughts?

I think that Chris Daly, as usual, is telling the truth. He really is taking every step possible to soften the effects of being without a near 6 figure income very soon (keep in mind that when he was elected supe’s got $37,500 a year and were considered part-time cause the Mayor ran everything).

I’m guessing (no inside info here) that when Jim Meko is sworn in as D-6’s next representative to the SF Board of Supes that the Dalys will be down to one house (the one next to the grandparents). He said last evening that there were 17 members of he and wife Sarah’s family in town last week for some kind of reunion. I chided him for not inviting Luke to take pictures. It hadn’t occurred to him.

Yeah, Daly will be OK. He’s taken one hell of a pounding from a legion of hired no-talent hacks over the years but he signed on for it. His family did not and they have an equal voice in these decisions (else he’d have run for Mayor). Now his family can weigh in again. He can stay in a dwelling bought on top of the bubble that has already burst or he can hedge his and his family’s bets.

Hey, I ran against Chris in 2000 and I hold every political and media figure in SF to the highest standards possible. I’ve lived in Chris’ district for all of his years of service and after January 2011 he owes me nothing. And, I owe him thanks for everything he did for me and people like me (you used to have to pay the desk clerk to have a guest in SF SRO’s for one thing – now I run an online TV show out of one).

Let me end this by tying into a lesson I learned dealing with Matt Gonzalez. In the end, we don’t own the people whose campaigns we’ve worked for. One of my readers wrote that: “we needed him more than he needed us.” Lots of truth in that. It’s the same with Chris Daly. And, notice that it isn’t just the Progressives who are broken-hearted at the loss. You know how many people are being paid to write bad things (mostly anonymously) on the Internet and other media this week? They’re gonna miss him too.

Chris Daly

Go Giants!

Harold Brown

h. brown is a 62 year-old keeper of, an eclectic site featuring a half dozen City Hall denizens. h is a former sailor, firefighter, teacher, nightclub owner, and a hard-living satirical muckraker. His other FCJ articles can be found here. here.

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Comments for Court Jester’s Class of 2000 are now closed.

  1. King Tut,

    My apologies. I didn’t know Jake had returned to the grind. Congratulations to him. District One misses him badly.


  2. Is anyone fact-checking? Jake McGoldrick is not retired – he’s teaching at USF full-time. Calling him a “retired grandpa” is not only innaccurate, it borders on saying “over-the-hill” and out of touch. Consider Jerry Brown and Seantor Di-Fi – both more than 10 yrs older than McGoldrick to put the comment in perspective.

    And remember it was Jake who called for Newsom to resign (after the cuckolding affair). And when people stop dying on Doyle Drive, remember that was Jake’s work over many years to get the improvements long needed (while Newsom claimed the credit). End rant. Please don’t count out the former bard of the board. He may look like a “grandpa”, but he’s the smartest and most erudite orator we got.

  3. Interesting article. The class of 2000 SF Supervisors are and were always professional politicians, looking for their next paycheck, first and foremost. They look for another elected job (Newsom, Leno, Sandoval and Ammiano), or take a lobbyist/ party job (Peskin, Daly). If that is not available, sue the city for a paycheck after more political failures(Gonzalez). Lastly, they retire if they have no friends (McGoldrick, Hall).

  4. Harold,

    Thanks for the interesting piece. Time flies and it is easy to forget who was where and what, etc etc.

    The only way to describe them would be to think back to a time you walked into your neighborhood joint on a solo flight on a Tuesday afternoon. To your surprise you find eleven other people, all also on a solo flight. You’ve been there ten minutes, and they’ve been there for two hours, and they are fully steamed.

    You sit back, look over the room, and think “Who the hell picked this team.”

    All sides will continue to bitch about the other guys, but the team this town picks is, like it or not, its team. The least the jackasses could do is be entertaining.

  5. Howard,

    When the Navy agreed to turn Treasure Island and the Presidio over to the City I rejoiced. You see, the law said that the first priority was to use the facilities to alleviate any problem of homelessness. I wrote about it extensively. There were plenty of barracks for dwellings, hospitals and dispensaries, chow halls … Geez, there was even a brig in each place. We were finally going to get the living dead off the streets of the City where all of my grandchildren were born (don’t that piss you off?).

    Then, here came your buddies, Feinstein, Pelosi and Shorenstein. Shorenstein didn’t want to the drunks moved out of Mid-Market because he was buying the place up on the cheap and getting tax breaks because the neighborhood was blighted. Indeed it was and is. By Walter Shorenstein.

    Pelosi and Feinstein provided the legislative muscle to fence off any non-profits on the bases and Willie Brown got busy tearing down the barracks and other facilities that were much better than anything in the Tenderloin.

    And, you blame it on Daly? He did everything possible and still does to tend to the poor, crippled and insane. All you’ve ever wanted to do is drive them out of town. You have to realize that and the fact that you still attack shows the depth of your plutocratic cancer.

    Development? Under Willie Brown it was a runaway steer. When one member of the Planning Commission questioned a project he was immediately fired. “We’ve got to all be together on this thing.” said the billionaires favorite Uncle tom.

    That changed under Daly and the Class of 2000. The new Board appointees on the Planning Commission actually listened to the public And still do.

    They couldn’t stop the developers. The Mayor (Willie) had the majority vote on every major body and all Progressives could really do was get in some long overdue equal time.

    Rincon Hill and the other projects in D-6 couldn’t be stopped. The Board lack a veto-proof 8-3 majority and the most Daly could do was tear off a piece of the steer as it went by for the people who elected him.

    You think Chris didn’t succeed? Read ‘City for Sale’ again (forget the author folks, best book on redevelopment and powers at work in SF ever done – centers on Downtown’s drive to push the lower class out of the neighborhood that’s now Yerba Buena. Daly got more out of this army of bloodsucking developers than any politician in the 40 years or so I’ve been in and around this town.

    Jabba, Jabba?

    Who are you? Luke, I thought you were gonna require that people who write trash identify themselves. This person is probably writing under several names and getting paid handsomely for it. They’re too infantile to respond to. Howard is different. He once told me that he hoped I’d burn in Hell forever and then admitted that he didn’t actually believe in Hell. And, to my face! Let’s see your face, Jabber Jabber.


  6. Mr Daly nice of you to comment, not sure if you noticed this is a Bay Area blog not Fairfield (or where ever you are going)

    You have 8+ years to something that will help prevent African Americans leaving. May be now it is time to accept your ideas have failed. It is time for real change in SF, you should step down and get out of the way.

    You clearly have little invested here now. Do the right thing be with your family SF doens’t. Plus that $120+ a year could be given to some one who will continue to care.

  7. The Ode to the Hypocrite Chris was way over the top. Which of the two Chris Dalys were you writing about – the San Francisco Communist or the Fairfield capitalist? While profiting by buying foreclosed houses that were owned by people down on their luck, he authored legislation making San Francisco housing providers responsible for S.F. tenants down on their luck. Thankfully, Mayor Newsom had the good sense to veto the legislation that Daly wouldn’t live under but wants to subject the rest of us to.

    Daly’s wife and kids won’t have to live with the damage Daly and his cronies have done to this city. They will not have to step over human waste on the streets. They will not have to wade through the sea of panhandlers on every neighborhood-shopping street in the city. The Daly children will not be subject a school lottery, but will go to neighborhood schools.

    Chris Daly should resign from the Board of Supervisors immediately and hang his head low as he drivess east on the Bay Bridge.

  8. Also wondering here, why didn’t Daly have his in-laws move to SF?

    It seems to me Daly being such goodwill ambassador to the city would have had them living here long ago.

    Just think, within blocks of Mr. Daly’s house the parents could; see a pot club shooting at 14th and Duboce, they could get on a first name basis with hobo’s who have been living at the end of Stevenson alley under the freeway for years, they could experience the hobo’s on Market between Van Ness and Octavia at night, the welfare office on Mission and Duboce during the day, the one that says you can not bring in fire arms and knifes, the gangster and illegal alien crack dealers at 16 and Mission… All within mere blocks of Chris’s house.

  9. That was very entertaining, in a born again Christian voter pamphlet sort of way.

    Mr Daly is gone from SF and we can all breath a sigh of relief but I do wonder…

    What does the ethnic make up of an area have to do with anything? Back when I used to consider myself somewhat of a far lefty liberal 70/80’s, I think at that time I made the mistake of believing people should be judged based on who they are, I know see the error of my ways. Still, what does Fairfield’s ethnic population have to do with anything Chris Daly?

    My old girlfriend who is black told me once about being in a leftist political cult in Detroit in the early 90’s, she said all the college educated whites would give orders to the blacks, for their own good. She took off after a few months, being college educated herself, the condescending whites were a bit much. Something like that?


    What would the author’s and Daly consider “rock” music”?

    I would just love to know? Fish? Match Box 20? Third eye blind? Starship? Vanilla Ice?

    Agitprop does lead itself to terrible art appreciation.

  10. Rob,

    Yeah, I didn’t kiss your ass. And, frankly I’m a bit tired of you and Arthur Evans and your obsession as to where my lips stray. I’m straight. You ain’t getting any off this cowboy. give it up.

    But, thanks for your interest.


  11. Looks like Harold has kissed every possible ass. Did he leave anyone out?

  12. h,
    como siempre, on the money. Apart from Tom (and there cant be any doubt about his fealty and worthiness of our trust and gratitude) the only others who come out smelling somewhat floral, are Chris and Tony. Strange bedfellows maybe, but two you can generally count on to be true to their words, an attribute lacking in most of the rest of our ‘leaders’, elected or appointed, excluding of course, as always, Mr Adachi.

  13. On the question of African American population, San Francisco is under 7%, or roughly 55,000 people. Solano County, half our size, has over 60,000 African Americans living there. And the trend is moving even more so in that direction.

    As a San Francisco leader, this is a statistic that concerns me deeply.