Dick Meister, former labor editor of the SF Chronicle and KQED-TV Newsroom, has covered labor and politics for a half-century. Contact him through his website, www.dickmeister.com, which includes more than 250 of his recent columns.
Let's pause for a moment this Labor Day to recognize some of our most important, yet most maligned workers.
They're teachers and librarians, police officers and firefighters. They're bus drivers, doctors and nurses. Judges and lawyers, landscape gardeners and arborists. They're laborers and other maintenance and construction workers . . .
They are, of course, public employees. There are millions of them, who every day perform many thousands of the essential tasks that keep our country going.
It is they who keep our streets and highways, our parks and playgrounds safe and clean, who help educate our children, provide emergency health care, convey us to our jobs and back home, who sometimes risk their very lives to protect us from harm. Read more »
The economy's not getting any better, we still have 50,000 troops in Iraq, and the Democrats are in serious trouble this fall -- because they refuse to act like Democrats. That's why Johnny's had it with Barack Obama (though Tim says the Dems are still better than the alternative ....) Listen to the ranting and raving after the jump.Read more »
I've long sung the praises of genius local deep and Afro house label Fatsouls, its creative leader DJ Said, and its fantastically soulful We & the Music party -- another monthly installment of which takes place tonight (Fri/3, 9pm, $5. 222 Hyde, SF. www.222hyde.com) with residents Said and Le Charm.
The new release on Fatsouls, "In & Out" by classic Detroit musicmaker Alton Miller, confirms that the label is gaining stature worldwide by continuing its steady stream of high-quality, thoughtfully mature, and devilishly groovy tunes.
DeWitt Lacy wants District 10 to get its fair share -- of the city's economic pie, of the programs that serve San Franciscans, of the parks and infrastructure that San Francisco pays for. He complains that the district has some of the worse environmental problems in the city "and we don't even protect the parkland we have now." He's taking a generally progressive approach -- he opposes sit-lie, is against the gang injunctions, and supports all the revenue measures on the fall ballot. He also thinks the city makes it too hard on the working class; in fact, he complained about the cost of parking tickets, saying they're a real burden for people trying to support a family on moderate incomes. And he's concerned that the emphasis on housing in the city's Eastern Neighborhoods Plan could impact light industry. Read more »
Steve Moss sees the future of District 10 as a great opportunity -- for all of California. "We are a solution to the state's problem," he told us. Development in D 10 can help solve suburban sprawl and reduce commuting time and build a more sustainable state. But that means the state and the region need to help pay for the infrastructure needed to accomodate some 40,000 new residences over the next 20 years.Read more »
Lots of people have trouble with the IRS. Almost everyone I know has run afoul of the tax man at some point in time, and the fact that BART Board member and District 10 candidate Lynette Sweet at one point owed the feds $14,500 isn't exactly a major crime.
But there's a part of her story, at least at Matier and Ross present it, that strikes me as odd:
Sweet says she thought the tax lien was cleared up years ago.Read more »
Whoo! There's a lot going on nightlifewise this long weekend. Besides the parties upon which I shined a woozy post-Canadian spotlight in this week's Super Ego clubs column, here's a few more great soirees at which you can work out your frustration or relief that you aren't at Burning Man. The city is ours!
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokesperson Lori K. Haley sent the Guardian a statement today that suggests that ICE might change the city’s Secure-Communities activation status, after all. Read more »
District 2 candidates Janet Reilly, Mark Farrell, Kat Anderson, Vilma Guinto Peoro, Barbara Berwick and Abraham Simmons may be breaking out the champagne, right about now. That’s because incumbent D. 2 Sup. Michela Alioto-Pier just saw her bid to run for re-election squashed.
Here's a game that piles on hot-rods, collectible Playboy centerfolds, piano joints with framed Bogie posters, and one instance of a full-fledged Sinatra sing-along. Mafia II (2K Czech/2K Games, Xbox 360/PS3/PC)is the sequel to 2004's Mafia: The City of Lost Heaven, a well-received PC game that put players in the shoes of a cab driver as he rose through the ranks of the 1930s mafia. Its sequel mines similar Coppola and Scorsese territory, set this time in the 1940s and '50s, as you play a young war vet looking to settle his late father's debts.Read more »
So much fascinating shit is rooted in science -- from the way things work to the way they fall apart -- that it seems passing strange that more performance pieces aren’t written using scientific law as a unifying theme. Not that you’ll find a whole lot in your physics texts about Saturnade a spoofed drink mix with a long list of dire side-effects that belongs more properly in the frame of a John Kricfalusi cartoon. You probably won’t find mention in your astronomy handbooks about alien surveyors with invasion viability agendas either, but why split atoms over it?