Steven T. Jones

Computers for nothing

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By Steven T. Jones
Scott Beale from Laughing Squid was one of many bloggers given a free laptop by Microsoft as part of a PR stunt to promote its new Vista operating system. And it came in a Ferrari computer, no less. Well, after the blogosphere lit up with controversy and introspection, Beale (ever the standup guy, in my humble estimation) has decided to sell his machine on E-Bay and to donate the proceeds to the Electronic Freedom Foundation. Atta boy!

The next big fight

Supervisors seek to prioritize affordable housing in the eastern neighborhoods
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steve@sfbg.com
San Francisco's eastern neighborhoods — the Mission District, Potrero Hill, Showplace Square, Dogpatch, the Central Waterfront, and SoMa — are shaping up to be a prime battleground in the fight over who will determine the city's future.
Can city officials, working with community groups, set development standards that will create adequate housing for all income groups, protect the job-generating businesses that use light-industrial property, and include enough open space and other community benefits? Read more »

Status quo

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By Steven T. Jones
Just in case you thought Mayor Gavin Newsom wasn't trying to fool the public by announcing his intention to do town hall meetings as a substitute for meeting with the Board of Supervisors, as voters called for in Prop. I, here's a link to photos from the eight previous town hall meetings that he's held. Political theater indeed.

Newsom's glass jaw

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By Steven T. Jones
Just as my latest story on Mayor Gavin Newsom's prospects for reelection was going to press, he issued a letter that reinforced the very traits that have caused people to sour on him. Namely, that he's disengaged, unnecessarily divisive and political, out-of-touch, risk-averse, and just not up to the job of being a big city mayor. Read more »

Blood in the water

Just as the 2007 mayor's race begins, Newsom is starting to look vulnerable — but who's running against him?
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Mayor Gavin Newsom has long been considered a lock for reelection next year, a belief driven by his same-sex marriage gesture, hoarding of political capital, personal charm, and high approval ratings. Yet Guardian interviews with more than 20 political experts and insiders from across the ideological spectrum indicate that Newsom may now be more vulnerable than ever.
Just as San Francisco politicians are starting to calculate whether to run, the Newsom administration has suffered a series of political setbacks. Read more »

Pelosi's solid start

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By Steven T. Jones
Now, the Guardian hasn't always seen eye-to-eye with our congressional rep, incoming Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. In fact, it's fair to say the relationship has been downright chilly as she's made compromises to attain her leadership post and we've wanted someone to take stronger stands against the unchecked rise of Bush-brand imperialism, corporatism, and theocracy.
But I'm happy to see her take a strong stand against letting the hawkish Jane Harman take over the House Intelligence Committee, making the solid choice of Rep. Silvestrie Reyes instead. Read more »

Gay guys get gavels

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By Steven T. Jones
I have a prediction for the new session of the California Legislature, which begins on Monday: there won't be as much anti-gay rhetoric as we sometimes hear from the social conservatives in Sacramento. Why? Because the Assembly's two remaining gay men -- John Laird from Santa Cruz and our own Mark Leno -- have risen to the chairs of two of the most powerful committee. Leno will chair the Appropriations Committee, through which most bills must pass, and Laird will chair the Budget Committee. Or as one insider told me, the word have gone out: you gotta deal with the gay guys. Read more »

San Francisco Values

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By Steven T. Jones

Our colleagues at the San Francisco Chronicle flogged the phrase “San Francisco values” in the runup to this election, exploring its meaning in two front page stories and an editorial. Read more »

"This is a progressive town"

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By Steven T. Jones

Pollster David Binder was about to begin his regular election post-mortem in the SPUR offices this afternoon when I ran into Mayor Gavin Newsom’s press secretary, Peter Ragone. “Not a very good night for the mayor, huh?” I noted.
But rather than admitting the obvious, Ragone began to spin and dissemble like crazy, shrugging off the defeats of supervisorial candidates Rob Black and Doug Chan – who Newson endorsed and campaigned heavily for – and the approval of a slate of progressive ballot measures that the centrist mayor opposed. Read more »

More Hellman on SFSOS

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By Steven T. Read more »