Articles Posted in the Politics Category

  • Some dictators don't know where to stop. (Cartoon by J.N. Darling, 1876-1962).

    From Eugenics to the Holocaust
    to the Maltreatment of US Undesirables

    Today we see vestiges of eugenics-thinking in post-WWII America in the treatment of African-Americans, Jews, homosexuals, undocumented immigrants and Muslims – as well as traces of racism in the criticism of President Obama. We see a “blame the victim” mentality. Doesn’t it seem like the safety nets for the poor, mentally ill, disabled, elderly, and displaced are among the first programs to be cut at budget crunch time while at the same time we won’t approve taxing the rich more? The “well born” get richer while the havenots fall by the wayside.

  • The Civic Center Residence located at 44 McAllister in the Tenderloin celebrated its grand reopening Thursday following a $30 million makeover.  Photos by Luke Thomas.

    Civic Center Residence Celebrates Grand Re-Opening

    The Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation’s (TNDC) upgrade to the Civic Center Residence, located at 44 McAllister, included the construction of additional units of low-income housing, a seismic retrofit, plumbing and electrical overhauls, two new elevators, new shower rooms on each of the eight floors, and upgraded common room facilities including three community kitchens.

  • Herrera Moves to Sue CPUC, Feds Over San Bruno Tragedy

    Herrera Moves to Sue CPUC, Feds Over San Bruno Tragedy

    “In the aftermath of the San Bruno tragedy, it has become increasingly obvious that blame must be shared by regulators who were either asleep at the switch or too cozy with the industry they’re supposed to regulate,” said Herrera. “The potential threat to human life and safety demands the strictest enforcement of federal pipeline standards. Yet while PG&E was flouting federal law, regulators did little to hold the company accountable. Congress enacted the Pipeline Safety Act to allow for legal actions like the one I am initiating to protect public safety, and I am confident a federal court order will help accomplish that. The potential risks to San Franciscans and others from further gas pipeline failures can no longer be ignored.”

  • Closing the Loophole in SF Health Care Ordinance

    Closing the Loophole in SF Health Care Ordinance

    The amendment, introduced by Supervisor David Campos, simply re-affirms the layman’s traditional understanding of a “health care expenditure” by allowing employees to carry over funds from health reimbursement accounts from year to year. At present, some employers are taking back unspent HRA balances at the end of the year, denying employees the use of those funds.

  • Libyan rebels gather at the front line on the eastern ridge of the Nafusah Mountains in Western Libya, on the outskirt of Gualish, on July 10, 2011 as forces loyal to Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi launched a counterattack against rebel advance positions nearby. (Photo: MARCO LONGARI/AFP/Getty Images)

    Libya and US Debt: Another Treasury-Draining War

    Yet, the bill for U.S. participation in the NATO-led Libya mission is projected to reach at least $844 million by September with the U.S. funding about three quarters of the military spending by all NATO countries. This expenditure is on top of $1.2 trillion and counting, we are spending on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Clearly, we cannot continue these enormous war expenditures ad infinitum, especially with our faltering economy. This money could be better spent elsewhere.

  • xxx. Photo by Luke Thomas

    Fair Shelter Initiative Hearing On July 14

    Care Not Cash or Proposition N was passed by voters in 2002 and was promoted as a means to increase mental health, substance abuse treatment and housing in exchange for County Assistance Program (CAAP, previously known as GA) benefits. Under current law, the $422 allotted monthly to homeless people enrolled in CAAP is reduced to $59; the rest is redistributed to city-funded shelter services through a fund managed by the Human Services Agency.

  • Mayor Lee Rejects Adachi Overture for Pension Reform Compromise

    This is currently a hot topic

    Mayor Lee Rejects Adachi Overture
    for Pension Reform Compromise

    Both Adachi and the Mayor are sponsoring competing pension reform proposals that are expected to go before voters in November in an effort to correct a structural imbalance between pension costs and city revenues, an imbalance which has forced the city to cut services and layoff city workers year after year to make up for spiraling pension costs.

  • nuclear-contamination

    This is currently a hot topic

    Lies, Damn Lies, and “Safe” Nuclear Power

    Many problems AP found could trigger a nuclear disaster, including broken seals and nozzles, rusted pipes, aging facilities past their useful life, and numerous examples of shoddy maintenance and management laxity. Nonetheless, NRC officials rubber stamp license extensions, including 66 facilities over 25 years old re-licensed for another two decades, instead of responsibly shutting them down.

  • Miyamoto Kicks Off Campaign for Sheriff

    Miyamoto Kicks Off Campaign for Sheriff

    The fifteen-year Sheriff’s Department veteran, native San Franciscan and father of five (including triplets), was joined by his family and friends, Supervisor Sean Elsbernd, former State Senator Quentin Kopp, former Supervisor Bevan Dufty, former Department of Emergency Management Director Vicki Hennessy, the White Crane Lion Dancers – and as many as 200 placard-wielding supporters under an unusually sodden June sky.

  • Rose Pak Interviewed on SF Mayor’s Race

    Rose Pak Interviewed on SF Mayor’s Race

    RP: “I think what is so bad, the left movement has been dominated by Chris Daly and Aaron Peskin and we’re all lefties but we’re not their kind of lefties. They are bent on destruction against everything. Their type of left progressiveness is over I think.”

  • FCJ Interview with Mayoral Candidate Tony Hall

    FCJ Interview with Mayoral Candidate Tony Hall

    My contract as director was not renewed when I refused to sign the sweetheart contracts for the development of Treasure Island that were being illegally pushed by Gavin Newsom to placate his political donors. It was a sad day for San Francisco because it thwarted the only realistic plan for the future of Treasure Island that I had been working on with the Navy. What they are doing there right now is a travesty. There are at least a billion dollars in pre-development costs that will never be financed in this environment by any bank. They want to build skyscrapers on landfills on a seismic fault. They want to plant organic gardens on toxic soil. To put people’s lives in such danger, and mislead the public is so wrong. But anyway, I have made my case over and over, and the decision-making process regarding Treasure Island appears to be closed as the current Board of Supervisors and the interim mayor are all for it.

  • Tourk Confirms Saturday Voting Dead

    Tourk Confirms Saturday Voting Dead

    Tourk needed to raise $2.4 million from private donors by July 7 to fund the cost of adding Saturday, November 5, 2011 as an alternate day for voters to cast their ballots. As of Friday, the Saturday voting fund had a zero balance.

  • A voting initiative sponsored by GroundFloor Public Affairs founder Alex Tourk appears to have failed for a luck of funding. Image courtesy

    Saturday Voting Initiative Dead? Herrera Downplays Connection to Consultant and Contributor

    The WhyTuesdaySF initiative was the brainchild of political consultant Alex Tourk, who successfully tapped private venture capital from Silicon Valley angel investor Ronald C. Conway, tech maven David Jeske, Morgan Stanley partner Robert Lesko and other wealthy interests (some of whom, like Lesko, were from out of state) to fund the campaign to place Proposition I on the November 2010 ballot. Despite being drowned out by the hubbub of pension reform and hotly contested supervisorial races, voters overwhelmingly approved the WhyTuesdaySF initiative by almost 20 percentage points.

  • Tony Hall Gets Some Necessary Conversation Love

    Tony Hall Gets Some Necessary Conversation Love

    Tony Hall is the target of Melissa Griffin and Beth Spotswood’s latest episode of Necessary Conversation, poking a little fun at the former District 7 Supervisor and mayoral candidate, best known for his stand against corruption on Treasure Island, successfully defending himself against trumped-up allegations of money laundering, and for his silky-smooth, swooner voice.

  • Bock, Gascón, Onek Square Off at DA Candidates Forum

    Bock, Gascón, Onek Square Off at DA Candidates Forum

    But judging strictly by the applause-meter, the clear winner was David Onek, a criminal justice expert and former San Francisco Police Commissioner who is the founding executive director of the UC Berkeley Center for Criminal Justice. Onek is running as a reformer and an “outsider,” yet he’s no stranger to the halls of power. His father was once senior counsel to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and his father-in-law is Michael Dukakis, the former governor of Massachusetts and the 1988 Democratic nominee for president. He served in Mayor Newsom’s Office of Criminal Justice before being appointed by Newsom to the Police Commission. Still, his message that only an outsider can reform the criminal justice system, seemed to resonate with the audience.