Watching City Hall #298, (6-28-04)
*No performance enhancing drugs
were used in the production of this column.
(unless you consider pot & booze to be drugs)
I’ve been thinking of having a dna test to find out if I’m really who I say I am. … You ever have days like that? … Kind of a ‘Bladerunner’ moment. (Actually, the thought came from watching an episode of ‘Maury Povich’ where the Ghetto meets the trailer park) … … Speaking of the District 5 race for supervisor …
The third meeting of the D5 Candidates Collaborative is tomorrow night (29th) at Michael O’Connor’s ‘Independent’ on Divisadero (look up the address yourself) … you should be there. 7-9pm. We’re more fun than a troupe of beginning knife throwers. True, we aren’t as crude and vulgar as Vice President Cheney, but we try.
Julian Davis makes IRV selections
Davis choice vaults Ross Mirkarimi into 1st place!
Julian Davis’ Choices:
1st place … Ross Mirkarimi
2nd place … Susan King
3rd place … Michael O’Connor
Now, see what strikes you odd about those choices? … The man didn’t vote for himself. How’s that for humility? He told me he didn’t think it was proper. … I talked with the guy for an hour or so at the Tornado bar in the lower Haight last week.
Man’s working on a Phd in Philosophy from Stanford. Definitely a brilliant young guy. At 26, he’d be younger than Daly or Newsom when they took office. I asked for the 3 top problems in the District and his solutions. He answered quickly and confidently.
Julian Davis looks at the ‘nickel’ District
(paraphrased & not inclusive but close)
Problem #1: Youth violence
Solution #1: Mentorships
Problem #2: Homeless
Solution #2: Central intake facility
Problem #3: Affordable housing
Solution #3: (He said something about ‘variagated budgets’ and dialoguing with All parties or something like that but this chick with great buns came in the bar and I missed most of what he said.)
For those of you whacky enough to be keeping score with me on the IRV breakdown in D5, I have collected 47 of 180 possible points thus far and
Mirkarimi is in 1st place with 11 points, just nudging out Michael O’Connor who has 10 points. I’m betting 45 points wins this thing.
I saw Bill Barnes tooling down the lower Haight business section with Alex Clemens of Barbary Coast Consulting and found myself hoping Alex is working with Barnes. Bill’s real low-key. Like Gonzo, he’s not big into glad-handing but he doesn’t have Matt’s humor and comes off a bit distant. … Throw a joke in there, Bill.
I was riding the bus when I saw Barnes. I avoid walking in the lower Haight nowadays because I can’t dodge bullets as well as I used to. I do walk the tough parts of D5 quite a bit nowadays. I’m poor and don’t have a bus pass for one thing and for another, I have to walk through some part of the free-fire zone to get to the Tenderloin (oh, and sometimes, City Hall). … I’ve noticed a bunch walking the District and reading mail from the neighborhood groups.
Panhandle waste by Park and Rec
Park & Rec needs an audit of how they’ve spent the hundred million we gave them in bond money a few years ago. In the Panhandle alone, they blew 2 million bucks on lights that weren’t needed and plan another million or so for a new bathroom that’s not needed (and, they want to replace a reinforced concrete and steel rod building with a prefabricated structure!) … reading the minutes of the meetings Park & Rec had with the neighbors is a riot. Multiple bids and all kinds of architectural designs and cross-discipline nexus consulting and shit like that. All of that when all they need to do is clean up the present structure, replace the original roof so that it matches the other dozens of WPA classic structures in the park … that’s all they need to do, but they’re going to tear it down and give you garbage in return. Then, there’s the Farmers Market proposal.
Vive’ la market!
It cost $260 a day for a small stall at the Haight Street Fair. Even with proposed fee increases, daily rental of a space twice as large in the City’s various ‘Farmers’ Markets will still be less than $50. While 2 blocks away.
Almost $1,000 a day
While, from reading the mail of those interested in getting some kind of a farmers market in the neighborhood, to those who’d rather see the Taliban move in … while reading their thoughts, I’ve come to doubt they’ll be able to agree on anything. … Nevertheless, I want to toss in a couple of thoughts and some inadequate research.
Just West of Ashbury on Haight is Gus’ ‘Haight Street Natural Foods Market’. Gus may well be the most popular guy in the neighborhood. At 7am, he’s open first of all the local businesses and he opens and closes with a smile. … He also pays $20k a month in rent.
Toss in normal overhead and labor and you’ve got a grand a day over margin in a business traditionally skimpy on same and, … you need a long day just to break even. … You understand how losing trade on 4 of his busiest days a month could break him?
So, I still like farmers markets and asked Gus why he didn’t just rent the first couple of stalls in the market for himself. He said he couldn’t cause he wasn’t a farmer. … I checked up on it just a bit. Seems the state would have to change a law to allow non-farmers to have spaces in these markets. I asked one of Mark Leno’s people and they said they’d look into it. I went further.
“I’m not a farmer either!”
She sure looked like she lived near dirt. … I was down at the Civic Center for their Sunday Farmers Market. Snooping around. … I got to talking with this 50’ish woman sitting in the driver’s seat of a big truck. Her door was open and she was sitting half inside and half outside the cab, smoking a Marlboro. I think she thought I was cute.
Turned out she had several stalls and was watching their operation from her elevated seat in the truck. Hmmmm, one large truck carrying enough produce for at least 4 stalls. At that time, that was $120 for the stalls plus, gas & labor.
I joked and mentioned the problem about the proposed market in the Haight and that’s when she chuckled, took a drag and allowed that she wasn’t a farmer herself. … I moved too quickly and asked if she bought her load wholesale from the farmer or was the agent and what the people selling the produce were being paid. It wasn’t until then that she noticed my press pass … End of conversation.
I know that’s skimpy but it’s the best you’ll get out of me right now. I smell a possible scam where people use other people’s licenses to keep still other people from getting a license of their own. … Yeah, smells like the Taxi Commission. … If Mark Leno can get Gus the first stall at the new Panhandle Farmers Market, I’ll support him for re-election.
SLUG … rhymes w/THUG
Tired of black, racist thugs? I get so sick of hearing bigots like Arlene Ackerman and Edgar Boyd and Mohammed Nehru and Heather Hiles preach about how oppressed they are while they bully voters with van loads of ex cons carrying ‘Newsom for Mayor’ signs (Nehru) … Hiles pretends to be an educator (the Department of Elections should be sued if they allow her to call herself an ‘educator’ which she most certainly is not she also should be identified as ‘appointed’) … Ackerman’s xenophobia is becoming legend and, while I usually applaud people who call Newsom anything bad, the Reverend Boyd was just succumbing to a bad case of ‘I-sure-am-missing-you-Willie’ blues when he tried to strong-arm Gavin with a bit of mau-mau’ing racist rant. Gavin is many things, Edgar but he ain’t no racist. He don’t discriminate on the basis of the color of anyone’s skin. … It’s the size of their bank account that he looks at.
A closing thought on SLUG. The Board of Supervisors should cease funding for SLUG due to the third world tactics they employed during the last mayoral election. The ludicrousness of claiming that storming places like the Reverend Boyd’s own church during a debate … Nehru called it “political awareness training”.
“Einstein says that the speed of light is the Universe’s only constant.
… Next to that, I put (w/fists gripped for emphasis) MONEY!!”
(from ‘The Pawnbroker’)
There is no more despicable character in town than Walter Shorenstein. If ever there were a case for a GFT (‘Gross Fortunes Tax’ Eileen’s idea) if ever there were a case for running a guy out of town for being a lousy citizen … Hey, I remember Walter when he threw the Filipino war veterans out of the International Hotel.
Walter wants more of his taxes back. While both daily papers reported correctly that Shorenstein is suing to get around 5 or 6 million bucks back on taxes on the Bank of America building, neither mentioned that Walter also led the last big raid on the City’s treasury. Remember when 55 corporations (oh yeah, Chronicle was one) … they sued to get their taxes back and extorted $85 million bucks from the City? … Well, 11 of the 55 corporations were controlled by Walter Shorenstein.
He does spend it well
Walter gave a few hundred thousand over the years to the Clintons and other Democrats. See the humor here? He gets back taxes by bullying the City, then gives some of the tax return to Clinton which he can write off his other taxes! … Neat, huh? And … and … he gets to sleep in the Lincoln Room at the White House and dine with the Clinton’s for free! … Sure the shit beats the hell out of supper at Glide Memorial and a sleeping pad between 2 sexual predators in a City shelter. (which is what his greed causes to happen to thousands)
He was Gavin Newsom’s first boss. I don’t know if he was able to write that off of his taxes. Later, he funded a baseball scholarship for young Gavin at Santa Clara University. You can bet that came off his taxes. … Yeah … despicable … you gotta admire that.
That’s enough for now. … Wait. … Eileen says I didn’t insult any APA’s in the column. Hmmm, that is an oversight. … Hmmm, yeah. I’ll do Ed Jew.
Tax breaks are very popular with voters. Especially, if the resulting shortfalls in service don’t effect them. Ed got smoked in the District #4 supes race in 2002. Fiona Ma wiped up the floor with him. As I recall, at the time people said that Ed was living in the East Bay but claiming residency with his mom in the Sunset so’s he could run. Anyway, he seems to have been thinking things over and trying to figure out how he could score points with the electorate out in the Sunset. … Block a tax to repair the sewer system! … How perfect. Since most of the City’s doo doo and pee pee are treated in black neighborhoods and sewage overflows during storms drain into the basements of brown people in District 11. … there … you could ignore mentioning Ed is a Republican and just go after him for not caring if he fills the basements of black and brown people with shit as long as he makes points with the property owners in District 4. … So, anyway, Jew lost his appeal to kill the tax before the Public Utilities Commission and plans to sue or do a petition to get it on the ballot. He might get that on the ballot too. He just needs 13,000 signatures. … But, you know what? I bet he doesn’t get any signatures in the black and brown neighborhoods.
If I didn’t insult you or your group or someone you love today … tune in tomorrow.
What’s that smell? …