Occupy Wall Street and its local offsprings might consider intervening in political campaigns. Presidential primaries will begin early next year, with the Republican National Convention on August 27 and the Democratic National convention on September 1. Occupy Wall Street might consider dogging these presidential primaries, House and Senate campaigns, and conventions, to demand the candidates address America’s income inequities and corporate greed. What if at every campaign stop, a political candidate was confronted by Occupy Wall Street members demanding what the candidate was going to do about reigning in Wall Street and about America’s income inequities? The confrontations would let candidates know that failure to address protestors’ concerns will have adverse consequences in future elections.
Alameda County is the designated mutual aid coordinator for the Bay Area region and called in reinforcements from San Francisco and Santa Clara counties to assist the Oakland Police Department in controlling a peaceful protest turned restive following the early Tuesday morning dismantling of Occupy Oakland, a tent city erected two weeks ago outside Oakland City Hall.
With hundreds of thousands of unregulated special interest dollars on the line, not to mention Lee’s reputation and poll numbers, Lee’s campaign announced Lt. Governor and former Mayor Gavin Newsom would be joining Lee to “make an announcement about Mayor Lee’s campaign” following a walk-thru at a tech startup in SOMA.
The press turned out in force, not to focus on Newsom’s late endorsement of Lee, but to question Lee about his involvement in the allegations of vote tampering by an independent group of campaign volunteers wearing Ed Lee for Mayor T-shirts in Chinatown on Friday, allegations first reported by the San Francisco Chronicle, the Bay Citizen and the Epoch Times.
The reports allege Lee supporters working for SF Neighborhood Alliance for Ed Lee for Mayor 2011, the same independent expenditure committee that financed Lee’s unauthorized biography, “The Ed Lee Story: An Unexpected Mayor”, were actively engaging in vote tampering at makeshift polling tents erected in Chinatown on Friday at the intersection of Stockton and Pacific streets.
The clarion call of “We are the 99 percent” has driven home a blaring message about what protesters argue is a host of inequalities — of wealth, income, education, housing, economic opportunity, political clout, access to decent food and healthcare, and much more. Some protesters want to see corporate economic and political power reined in and others call for capitalism to be reformed, transformed or replaced. Proposals include enforcing existing regulations on corporate finance, breaking up corporate bank chains, creating a city-run municipal bank or expanding off-the-grid barter economies and alternative currencies.
That’s the takeaway message one gets a from the latest poll published by The Bay Citizen and the University of San Francisco in the early hours of Monday morning, the results of which has Lee winning after 9 rounds of ranked-choice ballot tabulations.
New Jersey-based Maximum Research, Inc conducted the poll of 551 likely registered voters between October 7 and October 13. The poll was commissioned and paid for by the BayCitizen at a cost of $10,000, confirmed newly minted BayCitizen managing editor Steve Fainaru.
There were thousands of us! Of course, the mainstream media did not report our numbers. The Sunday Chron buried the story on A11, putting a short local insert into a routine wire service roundup, and did not even attempt to estimate the crowd size. My estimate: at least 10,000 people marching, and it snowballed as we moved past Union Square and up Powell, through the cable car turnaround and back up Market toward the Civic Center.
It all started off around 11:30 pm when Ho and Pearce arrived at the city’s favorite political watering hole following a successful, well attended No on E and F campaign fundraiser organized by CitiReport.com founder Larry Bush and Democratic Party chair Aaron Peskin.
Sponsored by Lee and backed by public employee unions, Prop C was placed on the ballot by Lee and the Board of Supervisors. Sponsored by Adachi, Prop D is a voter-approved ballot initiative qualified with over 70,000 signatures.
October 13, 2011
Last year, Conway gave $35 thousand to the Yes on L campaign to criminalize sitting on a sidewalk. This year, Ethics Commission filings show that Conway has already spent $218,500 in San Francisco to support various conservative causes. A San Francisco Bay Guardian article notes Conway has given more than $320 thousand to Republicans since 1999. Like the Gettys, Warren Hellman, Dede Wilsey, Michael Moritz and the late Donald Fisher, Conway appears to be the latest member of the “1%” class who is spending exorbitant gobs of cash on a San Francisco election. All this is very interesting, of course, given that Conway is a Palo Alto venture capitalist.
The much coveted Chronicle endorsement is expected to provide Chiu a significant boost to a flagging campaign while diminishing confidence in the frontrunner status previously attributed to Lee. In addition to throwing the ranked-choice race wide open, the development may be seen as an unsaid repudiation of Lee, whose candidacy was tainted when he broke his promise of not seeking a full term. The Board of Supervisors appointed Lee in January to complete then Mayor Gavin Newsom’s final term on the expressed condition Lee would not exploit his interim “caretaker” status and seek a full term.
“We must take our city back. This is about survival.”
— Ron Conway, Republican and $10,000 contributor to Proposition E to allow the Board of Supervisors to amend and even repeal voter-approved laws.
Ron Conway made that statement last October before a business-friendly group at the Bay Area Council, according to the San Francisco Business Times. And according to that same paper, his call to “take our city back” was met with strong applause.
Dubbed “Everywhere for Avalos Day,” dozens of eye-catching and head-turning spectacles were simultaneously coordinated across the city in an effort to garner increased support for Avalos, a staunch progressive whose endorsements include the Democratic Party, San Francisco Tenants Union, California Nurses Association, San Francisco Bay Guardian, Harvey Milk Democratic Club, San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, the largest public employee union, SEIU 102, Coleman Action Fund, United Educators of San Francisco, American Federation of Teachers, Sierra Club and the League of Young Voters, among others.
In a letter addressed to U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag, California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, and San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón, Herrera alleges donors to interim Mayor Ed Lee’s campaign conspired to exceed contribution limits by laundering money through business associates of Go Lorrie’s Airport Shuttle.
Calling themselves the “99 percenters,” the protesters had convened on the San Francisco Federal Reserve in solidarity with similar protests that began on Wall Street in New York City, September 17. Their collective aims include drawing attention to the growing disparities in wealth, corporate greed, auditing the Federal Reserve, taxing the rich, the Obama administration’s bailout of banks and resultant rising unemployment and foreclosures, as well as cuts to public services.
The fact is, only the highest paid public employees – cops, firefighters, nurses, and those who can afford silk-lined suits (including Adachi) – have anything to really quibble about with Prop D. Why? Because Adachi’s pension reform measure is a progressive solution to a financial math problem no sane taxpayer, city employee, mayor, Board of Supervisors, Civil Grand Jury or union boss no longer denies exists.
There are official data over time called the Gini index or coefficient between zero and one that is a statistical measure of economic inequality. When it is zero national income is evenly distributed among all citizens, and when it is one all the income goes to one person. Obviously the Gini figure will be somewhere between zero and one. Some nations have very low values and others very high ones. In the high category is the US. But more important is that the index has changed over time, rising from about 1980 to current times, after it had remained fairly stable over several decades. That significant rise from about .37 to .45 shows unequivocally that the rich got richer as most of the population in the middle class and below lost ground.
Allegations of Central Subway financial improprieties were first reported by the San Francisco Chronicle. A Civil Grand Jury report entitled “Central Subway: Too Much Money for Too Little Benefit” concluded the Central Subway project “should be redesigned.”