I came to San Francisco in 1981, and there were people sleeping in Golden Gate Park. Dianne Feinstein, who was the chief exec back then, would periodically try to get rid of them. Art Agnos and Frank Jordan did the same thing. At one point in the 1990s, when Willie Brown was mayor, he discovered the shocking fact as if for the first time, and had a team sweep the campers out. Read more »
There's a new move afoot, this time through a lawsuit, to change the way taxicab permits work in San Francisco. Rachel Stern lays out the story on page 14, but allow me to offer a bit of political background:
The San Francisco cab industry works as a medieval class system. There are members of the landed gentry people who have medallions, or operating permits and there are serfs, people who drive cabs but don't have permits. Read more »
The Examiner's having fun with front-page headlines today ("Better sit down for this -- Muni removes benches"), but my fave is the interview with the co-chair of the Marijuana Offenses Oversight Committee. I've known Michael Goldstein, fomrer Harvey Milk Club president, for years, and I don't think he ever expected to be called the city's "Top Pot Cop."
So it looks as if there won't be much of a mayor's race this fall after all. I know that Matt Gonzalez took a hard look at it; he met with a good campaign consultant, talked to possible supporters and donors, took a poll ... and decided that he wasn't going to win.
Gonzalez didn't want to run a symbolic campaign. Read more »
Last night, KTVU devoted 14 minutes at the top of the hour to the death of Bill Walsh. The Mercury News did a special eight-page section on him.
Okay, the guy was brilliant. I've been watching him since the 1970s, when poor Greg Cook threw out his arm trying to run a Walsh offense as a Cincinatti Bengals rookie. Walsh was one of the best coaches in NFL history, built one of he best teams in NFL history, recruited and trained the best quarterback in NFL history ... but come on: he was a football coach.
This is a fascinating tale, from Fog City Journal. It sounds like the Redevelopment Agency (officially, anyway) wants to call this all a misunderstanding, but I can see it becoming a much bigger problem if Newsom succeeds in privatizing more city parks.