San Francisco

Street Threads: Look of the Day

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Today's look: Inga, New Montgomery and Mission

Tell us about your look: "I love fashion! I try to put things together that are different."

Guardian editorial: Ellison wins, San Francisco loses!

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EDITORIAL San Francisco's not going to lose the America's Cup. Oracle CEO and yachting billionaire Larry Ellison is too excited about the prospect of bringing the sport (and his company's logo on the sail of his boat) to a mass audience for the first time in history that he's not about to abandon San Francisco Bay. The process is too far along; that much is a done deal.

But the development agreements for the city's waterfront is not a done deal at all — in fact, the proposal could wind up giving Ellison effective control over five piers and a valuable waterfront lot that he could develop for condos. And the city won't get anywhere near enough out of the deal.

The development agreement is really just a sideshow in the cup planning; nobody's arguing that Ellison's America's Cup Event Authority will need space to stage the race, and that will require the renovation of some waterfront property. And nobody disputes that the event will bring tourism and revenue to the city, which will offset some of the cost of allowing Ellison rights to the waterfront. Read more »

Editor's notes

Why being the mayor "of the 100 percent" isn't good enough

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tredmond@sfbg.com

It's hard for California cities to raise taxes. Almost anything that amounts to a tax hike has to go before the voters, and most of the time, it requires a two-thirds vote.

But in a year when the local legislators are also up for election — and six of the supervisorial districts are up this fall — the voters can pass taxes with a simple majority.

That's one reason that 2012 is a perfect year for tax reform in San Francisco. The other is the spirit of Occupy.Read more »

Guardian editorial: Mixed report on Mayor Lee

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EDITORIAL Mayor Ed Lee's first big decision — the appointment of a District 5 supervisor — demonstrated something very positive:

The mayor knows that he can't do what his predecessor did and ignore and dismiss the progressive community.

His inauguration speech demonstrated something else: That he has no intention of being a mayor who takes on and defies the interests of downtown. Read more »

City Hall's 2012 agenda

Ed Lee needs to realize he can't be another Gavin Newsom

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EDITORIAL There's so much on the to-do list for San Francisco in 2012 that it's hard to know where to start. This is a city in serious trouble, with unstable finances, a severe housing crisis, increased poverty and extreme wealth, a shrinking middle class, crumbling and unreliable infrastructure, a transportation system that's a mess, no coherent energy policy — and a history of political stalemate from mayors who have refused to work with progressives on the Board of Supervisors.Read more »

Guardian editorial: City Hall's 2012 agenda

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EDITORIAL There's so much on the to-do list for San Francisco in 2012 that it's hard to know where to start. This is a city in serious trouble, with unstable finances, a severe housing crisis, increased poverty and extreme wealth, a shrinking middle class, crumbling and unreliable infrastructure, a transportation system that's a mess, no coherent energy policy — and a history of political stalemate from mayors who have refused to work with progressives on the Board of Supervisors.

Now that Ed Lee has won a four-year term, he and the supervisors need to start taking on some of the major issues — and if the mayor wants to be successful, he needs to realize that he can't be another Gavin Newsom, or Willie Brown, mayors who were an obstacle  to real reform.

Here are just a few of the things the mayor and the board should put on the agenda for 2012: Read more »

Money and values

Warren Hellman played a unique role in San Francisco and left a void that needs to be filled

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steve@sfbg.com

Warren Hellman left a hole in the heart of San Francisco when he died on Dec. 18 at the age of 77. That's where he existed, right in the city's heart, keeping the lifeblood of money and values flowing when nobody else seemed up to that task. But as the outpouring of affection and appreciation that followed his death attests, he set an example for others to follow...and maybe they will.Read more »

Guardian editorial: PG&E's system fails again!

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EDITORIAL There's no question that officials from Santa Clara — thrilled to have finalized financing for a new 49ers stadium — were taking full political advantage of the Dec. 19 blackouts at Candlestick Park. There's no question that the event Mayor Ed Lee called a "national embarrassment" helped guarantee that the team will leave San Francisco after one more season.

But this is about more than football — and the mayor and the supervisors ought to be using this latest PG&E screw-up to take a serious look at the company's reliability and its impact on the city.

This is hardly the first embarrassing PG&E blackout in San Francisco. For the past few years, the private utility's aging infrastructure has been failing, leaving businesses and residents in the dark. And while PG&E officials are trying to blame the city for the latest snafu, everyone admits that the problem started when a PG&E power line snapped. Read more »

The one percent on the waterfront

The 8 Washington plan would build apartments for the $450,000 salary set

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EDITORIAL While Mayor Ed Lee struggles with the OccupySF encampment, another, very different group has its eyes on the city's waterfront. On the edges of the ground where protesters are talking about the one percent of Americans that control the vast majority of the nation's wealth, two major development projects aimed entirely at that very wealthy sliver are starting to move forward.Read more »

Editorial: Mayor Lee is tough as hell on Occupy SF protestors, but keeps City Hall safe for PG@E and the downtown gang

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And so Mayor Ed Lee once again shows his true colors:  he is tough as hell on Occupy SF protestors and, unlike every other mayor in every other U.S. city,  sends in the cops to roust them out in  two midnight raids and trumpets the word  by bullhorn from the mayor's office that he will harass them until the end of time. Meanwhile, he is is quietly sending  sending out the message that under his stewardship that City Hall will be safe for PG@E, the downtown gang, the big developers, the bailed banks, and the feds who are going after the dispensers of medical marijuana and the newspapers who run their ads.  (Full disclosure: that's us at the Guardian.)  B3

EDITORIAL This is what civility and compromise looks like:

At a little after 10 P.m. Oct 16, a squadron of San Francisco police equipped with riot gear raided and attempted to shut down the OccupySF protest. It was the second time San Francisco has embarrassed itself, becoming the only major U.S. city to attempt to evict members of the growing Occupation movement — and this time, the cops used a lot more force.

The first crackdown, on Oct. 5, was supposedly driven by concerns that the activists were using an open flame for their communal kitchen without the proper permits. This time around, the alleged lawbreaking was confined to a Park Code section that bans sleeping in city parkland after 10 p.m. And since Justin Herman Plaza, where OccupySF is camped, is technically under the jurisdiction of the Recreation and Park Department, that ordinance could be enforced. Read more »