Back in the early days of this column, I would occasionally get letters from irate readers over my latest rant telling me in less-than-flowery terms to go back where I came from.So you can understand when I told them that I was actually from San Francisco, that it would annoy them even more. In this label-happy town, I was either too liberal or conservative, too gutsy or weak, or too full of things that can’t be reprinted here. Read More
Widespread voter confusion, wasted millions in campaign financing, claims of election fraud — just a typical November in San Francisco.
City voters proved once again that they can rise above the clamor, and while they had to wait patiently for their ballots to be counted under our spin-the-big-wheel system of elections, they at least reiterated that San Francisco has no plans to become Oakland.
For that, we can be thankful. For the election, however, a number of individuals and activities stood out, though not necessarily in a good way. Read More
‘Ranked-choice voting is a failed experiment,” according to Supervisor Mark Farrell. Today, Farrell and Supervisor Sean Elsbernd will propose a charter amendment to end ranked-choice voting in San Francisco. It will need a majority of votes from the Board of Supervisors to get on the ballot in June, but I can’t imagine any supervisor will be able to vote against it after the spectacle we are about to witness as we calculate the votes in this mayoral race. Read More
With the surprising success of the 49ers this season, there’s been a lot of talk about the Harbaugh brothers, the roughneck Ryan twins and other siblings that roam the sidelines.
Yet San Francisco has its own prized coaching families, part of a brood so small and tight that they share the same lineage and background, a tree with roots that date back to the glory days of city sports.
And coaching is like joining a family because in most cases the bonds last beyond the last job, one that generally involves more stopovers than a cross-country Amtrak train. Read More
He’s got a major occupation in one of San Francisco’s prime-time parks, he’s getting hammered in attack ads by his rivals, and some of his campaign workers are dredging up daily headlines for their high jinks.
So why is San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee smiling these days? For the simple reason that he’s not running Oakland. Read More
‘Passage of this measure will lead to costly litigation that the voters will ultimately pay for,” read part of an argument opposing Proposition M in the November 2008 election. The measure passed, and today the Board of Supervisors will vote to pay $122,500 for the legal fees of plaintiffs who just won a case invalidating Prop M. Read More
San Francisco can be magical, but it’s rarely majestic. The City’s landscape has been impacted less by architectural design than neighborhood activism.
So in a place where small changes are fought with searing intensity, it’s hardly news that a big idea would generate instant reaction. And that would certainly describe the response to a plan to erect the tallest building in San Francisco’s history as the focal point of its proposed transit hub. Read More
As a general rule in the history of marches and movements, you’re not in a good place when people are talking more about sanitation than social justice.
And it doesn’t help that when you need a charge, your “organizers” send out a plea for a 16-volt battery.
So it’s easy to see why general onlookers of the ongoing Occupy San Francisco demonstration have homed in on a similar observation. And that is, here in the land of a thousand protests, why hasn’t Occupy SF turned into a larger occupation? Read More
Like my mother yelling and ringing a cowbell at my basketball games, supporters of Ed Lee may have gone a bit overboard.
Reports have surfaced that folks who want to see Lee elected mayor in November set up tables in Chinatown where they marked — or instructed people on how to mark — mail-in ballots for Lee.
Lee’s official campaign has distanced itself from the actions of these self-proclaimed “Ed Heads,” calling for a stop to “any activity that undermines confidence in the election or the voting process.” Which is a hilariously tall order, if you think about it. Read More
Unless you might have missed it, bicycle safety and education week has arrived in San Francisco, with courses being offered to improve the overall biking environment in our fair city.
That is a fine thing, since biking has gained a foothold here unlike almost any big city in America, San Francisco being green and bold and sensitive to its carbon footprint. Read More