What underlies the Citizens United decision is the assumption that corporations are natural persons within the meaning of Section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution and therefore, have First Amendment rights. Corporate personhood dates back to the controversial 1886 Supreme Court decision in Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad. Although the Supreme Court supposedly did not make a direct ruling on the question of “corporate personhood,” the misleading notes of a clerk finding corporate personhood were incorporated in the Court’s decision. Whether this is myth or reality doesn’t matter at this point. This result was a Supreme Court precedent finding that a corporation is a “natural person.”
About 100 demonstrators blocked access to a Bank of America branch in the Excelsior District to call attention to unfair lending practices.
Judge Katherine Feinstein, daughter of US Senator Dianne Feinstein, was originally slated to administer the oath of office to Mirkarimi, Sunday, but declined last week citing a potential conflict of interest resulting from an ongoing investigation into an alleged domestic violence incident on New Year’s eve involving Mirkarimi and his wife, Eliana Lopez.
The well-choreographed proceedings were undertaken below the majestic City Hall rotunda, emceed by Lee’s former boss, Willie Brown, and attended by who’s who list of luminaries and dignitaries.
“Christina Olague is my appointment for District 5 Supervisor,” said Mayor Lee. “As a low-income tenant and immigration advocate, she shares my values in making government more fair and responsive for San Francisco residents. She has been a voice for our neighborhoods and has proven through her voting record on the Planning Commission that what San Francisco needs most right now is job creation and revitalizing our local economy.”
Olague, who co-chaired the controversial “Run, Ed, Run” campaign, will serve out the remainder of Sheriff-elect and former Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi’s term on the Board of Supervisors.
As chair of the Ethics Commission in 2004, Garcia was instrumental in fast-tracking Elsbernd’s appointment to the Board of Supervisors by then Mayor Gavin Newsom following Newsom’s appointment of former Supervisor Tony Hall to head the Treasure Island Development Authority.
After the US Department of Justice advised that Guantanamo prison could be considered outside US legal jurisdiction, the first twenty captives arrived at Guantanamo on January 11, 2002. Guantanamo has become a place of prisoner mistreatment, torture and indefinite detention. It is an international embarrassment.
Gascón’s presenters comprised the political elite. Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom, who appointed Gascón following former DA Kamala Harris’ election to California Attorney General, introduced Mistress of Ceremonies, US Senator Dianne Feinstein. DiFi acknowledged over 30 elected officials and judges from Los Angeles to Sonoma County including Senator Mark Leno, Mayor Ed Lee and Police Chief Greg Suhr. Harris introduced Spoken Word poet, Brandon Santiago. Each politico paid homage to former Mayor Willie Brown who introduced retired California Supreme Court Justice Carlos Moreno, who administered the oath of office. Gascon’s wife, Fabiola, held the Bible when Gascón took oath.
What prompted this sentimental journey back in time when all of these freedoms were taken for granted was a twenty-something guy standing in line behind me who appeared to be taking all of these indignities in stride. At first I admired his good-natured acquiescence to all that we have lost in our precipitous slide into a quasi police state.
But it also made me sad that he has no idea, no memories, and no chance of ever knowing all the freedoms he and his generation have lost.
Mirkarimi’s response stands in contrast to what he said when he was asked about the appointment when it was all but certified Mirkarimi had won election to Sheriff. At that time, Mirkarimi said he was “hopeful” Mayor Lee would contact him to discuss the matter.
It is dedicated to all who died fighting for the planet and those whose lives are on the line today. The cut was put together by Vivek Chauhan, a young film maker, together with naturalists working with the Sanctuary Asia network.
Another trucker, of Russian descent, said he understood revolution was sometimes necessary, pointing to the 1917 revolutions in Russia that overthrew autocratic Tsarist rule and the French revolution in 1789 that overthrew the ruling absolute monarchy.
This type of community picket action for political purposes has a long and venerable place in ILWU history. Back in 1939 longshoremen honored a picket line set up at the Port of San Francisco by the local Chinese community to stop a load of steel being sent to then-fascist Japan for its war effort, at that time focused on mainland China, but soon crossing the Pacific. Again it was used in 1977 against a South African ship in protest of that country’s apartheid policies, in 1997 against a ship loaded by scab labor in support of the dockers in Liverpool, England, in 2003 to stop a ship being loaded with war materiel bound for the just-declared war on Iraq, and most recently just a couple of years ago against an Israeli ship in protest of the Israeli military attack on the Turkish ship bringing medical and construction supplies to Gaza.
Valdez will be the stalwart of the OccupyCCSF for the next few weeks because, as he explained, finals are upon the students and the occupiers had to pack up and go study. Valdez said that he could afford to skip out on the rest of his classes and was committed to continuing the encampment “until the cops come.” He’s running a 50 foot extension cord from his tent to an outlet of Smith Hall, and so far, the campus police “have not provided resistance.” Valdez expects more students to return in January. So far, all the feedback he’s gotten during this occupation has been positive.