Guardian Editorial

Newsom: support just-cause eviction law

For the roughly 20,000 renters living in newer units, evictions can happen on a landlord's whim.
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EDITORIAL Mayor Gavin Newsom, reeling from criticism of his disappearing act last week and his failure to quickly reengage with San Francisco, has an opportunity to repair some of his tattered image, particularly among progressives, and mend fences with the majority of the Board of Supervisors. It wouldn't even require a dramatic or groundbreaking step — all he has to do is agree to sign legislation by Sup. Read more »

Editorial: The next Gavin Newsom

If he wants any kind of a political future, he needs to change
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EDITORIAL It's possible that Mayor Gavin Newsom took a long look at himself, his life, and his future last week and decided that politics — intense, 24/7/365 politics — wasn't what he wanted right now. Read more »

Gavin Newsom, lawbreaker

Newsom claims new sanctuary policy violates federal law, something the same-sex marriage advocate hasn't worried so much about in the past
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EDITORIAL Mayor Gavin Newsom has set off something of a crisis in San Francisco government by insisting that he will defy the city law that seeks to protect immigrant youth from deportation. While Newsom claims that the sanctuary policy approved 8-2 by the supervisors last week violates federal law (something the same-sex marriage advocate hasn't worried so much about in the past), this is really a matter of politics. Read more »

Wake up, City Hall - and get moving on CCA

PG&E's new ballot initiative would make it almost impossible for any community to get rid of the dirty, high-priced power the utility peddles
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EDITORIAL San Francisco's chance to create a semblance of public power, through community choice aggregation, faces a devastating threat from Pacific Gas and Electric Co. — and the city needs to move with a sense of real urgency to get this program off the ground.

CCA would allow San Francisco to buy electric power in bulk and sell it to customers at a reduced cost. It wouldn't create a true public-power system — PG&E would still own the transmission facilities. And while customers would see price breaks, the city wouldn't make much money off the deal. Read more »

How an online newspaper can succeed

No number of part-time bloggers and citizen journalists will ever be able to perform the watchdog role of a fully-staffed newspaper
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EDITORIAL Dave Iverson, host of KQED's Friday Forum show, introduced the Sept. Read more »

Stopping PG&E's fraudulent initiative

PG&E's "right to vote" ballot initiative has a misleading name, a misleading political message, and could spell the end of public power in California
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EDITORIAL A ballot measure that could spell the end of public power in California is headed for either the spring or fall 2010 ballot — and so far, the opposition is missing in action. This is a profoundly important issue, and every elected official, city council, board of supervisors, and utility agency in the Bay Area needs to immediately come out in opposition and start organizing to defeat it.

The source of the proposition, of course, is Pacific Gas and Electric Co. Read more »

City Planning's latest mess

When, oh when, will Dean Macris finally go away?
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EDITORIAL The San Francisco city planning director, John Rahaim, has kept a fairly low profile since taking over the troubled department in 2008. But some serious problems are starting to fester on his watch — and if he and the planning commissioners don't clean up the mess, the supervisors need to step in.

Rahaim remains somewhat in the shadow of the former director, Dean Macris, who is responsible for some of the worst San Francisco development problems of the past three decades. And the Macris influence is still very heavy in the department. Read more »

On health care, just win

Republicans will scream "socialized medicine" on behalf of insurance companies no matter what is in this reform package.
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EDITORIAL This could very well be the pivotal moment in Barack Obama's presidency. If he loses on health care reform — or worse, if he caves in to right-wing bullying tactics and abandons a strong public option — then not only will the American people and economy suffer, but Obama will have hobbled his ability to effectively address the myriad problems facing this country.

The time for negotiating with Republicans on health care is over. Read more »

Rhetoric and reform at SFPD

Before Chief Gascon starts talking amnesty and clearing minor cases, he needs to demonstrate that he's going to take a hard line on the serious cases
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EDITORIAL We're glad to see San Francisco's new police chief, George Gascon, is talking about reform. He's talking about opening up the mediaphobic culture at the SFPD, bringing in new blood at the management level, shifting schedules so more experienced cops are available at night (when most crime takes place). He wants to focus the discipline process on the most serious departmental offenders — the handful of officers who are responsible for the majority of the misconduct problems.

Those are, generally, good signs. Read more »

Newsom's leak

The mayor has put his own city's treasury at risk, possibly vioutf8g city law in the process
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EDITORIAL At the heart of the conflict over Sup. Read more »