• As many as 6,000 marched from Justin Herman Plaza to San Francisco City Hall, 7/20/14, to protest Israel's attacks on Gaza and the West Bank which has resulted in as many as 900 deaths.  Photo by Gloria La Riva.
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  • Masked fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) executed as many as 50 captured Iraqi soldiers near Mosul earlier this week.

Lee Files for Mayor, Candidates Respond,
Protester Calls for Lee to “Step Down”

August 08, 2011 | 10 Comments

If this morning’s announcement of interim Mayor Ed Lee’s official candidacy in the race for mayor, which included a protester calling for Lee to step down and fellow candidates lobbing accusations of dishonesty and lies at Lee, is any indication of what Lee will have to endure on the campaign trail, this year’s mayor’s race has the making of one of the most contentious battles in the history of San Francisco politics.

Posted in News, Opinion, Politics

Explicit Video: Conversation Hour with Ed Lee & Rose Pak

Explicit Video: Conversation Hour with Ed Lee & Rose Pak

August 08, 2011 | 1 Comment

“Get over your fucking self,” Pak responds. “This is about Willie Brown and me. Fuck keeping your word and your fucking promises. This is about me and using you to advance my fucking agenda – and my agenda is me.”

“Lie, Ed, Lie” Video Surfaces

“Lie, Ed, Lie” Video Surfaces

August 08, 2011 | 1 Comment

“I stand before you to announce my candidacy for mayor,” the video, posted by “RunRosePakRun,” begins. “I did not make this decision lightly. After much pressure from Rose Pak, Willie Brown and Recology executives, I have decided that I really am a politician, a short mustached, lying one. My change of mind in seeking this office has everything to do with what’s best for Rose Pak and me. See, I’ve always been a liar, a stooge for Rose Pak and Willie Brown.”

Posted in News, Politics

Ed Lee to Announce Candidacy for Mayor

August 07, 2011 | 5 Comments

“Mayor Ed Lee to make announcement about the San Francisco mayor’s race,” wrote former Mayor Gavin Newsom spokesperson Tony Winnicker in an email. “City Hall, Department of Elections, Room 48.”

Posted in News, Politics

h. Brown. Photo by Luke Thomas.

Matt Gonzalez Interview: Races for Mayor,
District Attorney and Sheriff Discussed

August 07, 2011 | 8 Comments

I like Ross (Mirkarimi) obviously. I supported him in his race to replace me as District 5 supervisor, but I will not be supporting him in this race. I don’t like the idea that the mayor would get to appoint a replacement to his seat. And if that were to happen, it wouldn’t be someone who would get elected in an open race. No progressives are talking about this. If Ross is elected sheriff, we will likely have a moderate in the Dist. 5 seat and will lose what should be the most progressive seat in San Francisco. So, I believe Ross should serve out his term. He should run for assembly or some other post, but not sheriff. Not now. And as someone who was once the District 5 supervisor, I believe I am allowed to say this. Incumbency is powerful, as Ed Lee is demonstrating, and Mirkarimi’s appointed replacement could end up serving for the next 9 years.

Posted in News, Politics

Overheard in Fog City: Daly in D5?

August 07, 2011 | 4 Comments

According to Daly, who resides a stone’s throw away from the District 6/5 border at the intersection of Stevenson and McCoppin streets, he will consider a run for the D5 seat next year should Ross Mirkarimi and Ed Lee, who is expected to declare his candidacy tomorrow, win their respective races for Sheriff and Mayor in November.

Posted in News, Politics

Prison overcrowding is draining state budgets.  Rather than repeal three-strikes laws, mandatory minimum sentencing and incarceration for non-violent drug offenders, state governments are looking at passing the buck to privately-run prisons. Photo source unknown.

Filling Prison Beds for Profit

August 06, 2011 | 1 Comment

At year-end 2010, America’s prison population topped 2.4 million, including federal and state facilities, local jails, Indian, juvenile, and military ones, US territories, and numbers held by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Posted in Politics

Adachi Pension Reform Measure Qualifies for Ballot

August 05, 2011 | 1 Comment

Voters will be asked to consider Adachi’s proposal and a “consensus” proposal sponsored by Mayor Ed Lee and backed by financier Warren Hellman, as well as police and firefighter unions. The consensus proposal includes pension and healthcare costs reforms. Adachi’s proposal is singularly focused on reforming pension contributions. The city’s largest union, SEIU Local 21, has not, to date, endorsed either proposals.

Posted in News, Politics

Candidates Weigh In On Possible Ed Lee Candidacy

August 05, 2011 | 5 Comments

The Board of Supervisors appointed Lee to the post of interim mayor in January to complete Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom’s term as mayor on the condition and explicit understanding that an appointed “caretaker” mayor would not use the position to run for a full-term. Lee acquiesced to the Board’s proviso, publicly and privately, before being sworn into office.

Posted in News, Politics

Bock and Onek Gang Up on Gascón,
Vu Trinh Makes Refreshing Debut

August 04, 2011 | 4 Comments

In the race for San Francisco District Attorney, Alameda County Prosectur Sharmin Bock, San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón, former Police Commissioner David Onek and former Orange County Public Defender Vu Trinh, squared off last eve in a candidates debate held at the Ella Hill Hutch Community Center.

Posted in Opinion, Politics

Arntz: Adachi Pension Reform Measure
Qualifying With “Comfortable Margin”

August 03, 2011 | 3 Comments

Expectations are that Public Defender Jeff Adachi’s pension reform measure, dubbed “Son of Prop B,” will qualify for the November ballot. Adachi said he pre-qualified the signatures before submission to the Department of Elections for qualification.

Posted in News, Politics

Excluded From SFPOA Mayoral Forum,
Tony Hall Releases Statement

August 03, 2011 | 5 Comments

Tomorrow there is to be a mayoral ‘forum’ held by the San Francisco Police Officers Association and moderated by a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle. I inquired of the SFPOA’s leadership why I was not invited, and I was told specifically that it was because of my stance calling for stronger pension reform. I asked them to reconsider their position and I have not yet heard back. That is answer enough for me to issue this statement.

Posted in News, Politics

Tom Ammiano Discusses San Francisco Mayor’s Race

August 03, 2011 | No Comments

Never the one to shy away from a press interview, Ammiano discussed several topics of interest with FCJ, including this year’s mayor’s race.

Posted in News, Politics

Chiu, Mirkarimi, Bock Lead in Contributions

Chiu, Mirkarimi, Bock Lead in Contributions

August 02, 2011 | 3 Comments

The following table data was summarized from the latest required campaign filings covering January 1 through July 31. Detailed contribution data is available at the San Francisco Department of Ethics website.

Posted in News, Politics

Willie Brown: The King Behind the Pawn

August 02, 2011 | 2 Comments

In the game of political chess, former Mayor Willie Brown is the king behind pawn (Ed Lee), pulling the strings in San Francisco politics and doing the bidding of his development clients to maintain control of Room 200 and its $7 billion purse.

Posted in Opinion, Politics

Overheard in Fog City: Kim Confirms Lee Endorsement

August 01, 2011 | 9 Comments

The development is significant in that it may answer the question of why Kim declined to endorse former roommate and political simpatico, David Chiu, when Chiu came knocking for Kim’s endorsement in February. It also suggests that Kim has known all along that Lee is going to run for mayor.

Posted in News, Politics

Unions say legislation being pushed by Republican governors nationwide is an attack on their very existence.

Republican Party Right-To-Work Laws
Designed to Exploit Workers?

July 30, 2011 | 3 Comments

Why do we need unions anyway? Because they are essential for America. Unions are the only large-scale movement left in America that persistently acts as a countervailing balance against corporate power. They act in the economic interests of the middle, working class. But the decline of unions over the past few decades has left corporations and the rich with essentially no powerful opposition. You may take issue with a particular union’s position on an issue, but remember they are the only real organized check on the power of the business community in this country. RTW laws are anti-union, pro-business

Posted in Opinion, Politics