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This Week's Paper

weekcoverGrover Norquist brings the Black Rock blues as Burning Man Jumps the Shark! Pro-Palestine protesters block the boat, fed-up teachers take strike vote, and crack cocaine sentences may soon get smoked. Plus: Myron & E lay down street soul at Noise Pop, Nick Monaco belts out his Mating Call, and Aubrey Plaza slays in Life After Beth. Articles Online | Digital Edition

From the Blogs

Birds & Batteries move out of the fog and into the bright light

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Part haunted house, half honky-tonk and a lot of freak funk, the sounds emitted via San Francisco band Birds & Batteries-- playing Fri/28 at Rickshaw Stop-- is a mixed bag of awesome that seems to come from a questionable place. Drug trade, mental instability and disturbing sadness inhabited the streets below band member Mike Sempert's former apartment in the Tenderloin and crept into his songwriting with dark undertones. Now that he's officially transplanted to greener grass in Oakland, the only thing creepin' into the band's new tunes is a little sunshine. 

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Street Threads: New York City

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Today's Look: Well, it's the always fashionable Naked Cowboy from Times Square

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Party Radar: Strap yourself in for the long weekend

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This week, I took advantage of our Video Issue to gush in the Super Ego column about some digital developments in Clubland that fascinate me. But of course upon us comes the three-day bonanza known as Memorial Weekend to the outside world (Blackout McBlackety-Blackout Weekend to party peeps). So here's a few picks to guide you tipsily down the Memorial Hole. Rat your wig and grip that PBR, because here we go. And check out our Weekly Picks for more craziness.

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Tasty bytes at the Guerilla Dining Collective

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“You're experiencing a dish crawl in a single room," chirped the beguiling CEO of Battledish, Tracy Lee. Lee's Interweb gig entails cataloguing SF dish-by-dish for the pleasure of adventurous food obsessed individuals, a Sisyphean task she says has her organizing the city's restaurants' specialties down to taste. To highlight this spirit of culinary safari, Battledish was taking part in and helping to organizing a dinner assembled by graffEats of some of the finest underground food purveyors in the Bay last night to create eight courses of delicately prepared plates, each paired with glasses of Phelps Creek, Oregon wines hitherto unreleased on the Californian market. Read more »

Fees rise in SF, but some supervisors prefer taxes

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By Brittany Baguio

 The Board of Supervisors this week voted to impose non-resident fees for admission into Botanical Gardens in an effort to help alleviate the city's $483 million budget deficit, as requested by the Mayor's Office. But even supervisors who supported it say they hope to end the fees if they can find some general revenue sources, a process that will begin next week after Mayor Gavin Newsom releases his budget on June 1. Read more »

Why is SFUSD signing on to Race to the Top?

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The Obama administration, to its credit, is actually paying attention to, and putting money into, urban public education. But Arne Duncan, the education secretary, is using some of the money to push a broad agenda that, frankly, drives me nuts and undermines a lot of what public education ought to be about.Read more »

Poll: PG&E is in trouble

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Internal polls by Pacific Gas and Electric Company's consultants show that Prop. 16 -- the scandalous attack on public power and community choice -- is still trailing, despite $45 million in advertising, a source familiar with the polling told me today.Read more »

FCC seeks input on new media ownership rules

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By Kaitlyn Paris

The Federal Communications Commission filed a Notice of Inquiry on May 25 asking for public input on its changing media ownership rules. Citizens concerned about proposals to expand corporate control of local television, radio, and print should submit their views within 30 days via the FCC website. The list of 107 topics can be found here, along with Commissioner's statements outlining the intent and scope of the rules and comments. Read more »

Another new model for newspaper ownership

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Well, maybe it's not entirely, new, but I haven't seen it around here. The Point Reyes Light, a legend in West Marin, was just sold to a community-based group that's almost, sortof a nonprofit. It's actually called a "low-profit limited liability company" (not a bad name for most newspapers these days), and it's going to be operated as a community trust, of sorts. Mark Dowie, the well-known investigative reporter, is involved, so that's good news. Read more »

Street Threads: New York City

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Today's Look: Cenia, Times Square

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Is Secure Communities opt-out still an option?

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Immigrant rights attorney Francisco Ugarte, who works for SFILEN,  just talked to me about why it’s critical that folks raise their concerns about immigrant rights with their elected officials in the face of Secure Communities, a program ICE is planning to bring to San Francisco June 1, and to all U.S. jails by 2013, without the openness and transparency that we have come to expect under the Obama administration. Read more »

The Daily Blurgh: Nasty surf, follicle fetishism

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Curiosities, quirks, oddites, and items from around the Bay and beyond

Could it have been the public urination? ING pulls out as Bay to Breakers sponsor.
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Better wear a wetsuit (and then some). Santa Cruz's Cowell Beach voted second worst California beach in terms of water quality.

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An extraordinarily good man

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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 Web site, www.dickmeister.com, which includes more than 250 of his recent columns.

It was 40 years ago this month that Walter Reuther died in a plane crash. Forty years. Yet the auto workers leader remains an important inspirational figure - a man whose life holds crucial lessons for those who are today seeking to revitalize the American labor movement.
 
I came upon him late in his career, and to me he seemed verbose, distant and a bit pompous: a do-gooder who didn't smoke, didn't drink, didn't wench; who did only good things, and always in the artfully arranged glare of publicity.
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More on the new cuddle porn: Jesse from "I Want Your Love"

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A while back, I spoke to filmmaker Travis Mathews about his feature-length project, I Want Your Love. (While tha film is still in development, a demo clip is available for online viewing). In an effort to get another perspective on I Want Your Love, I spoke to Jesse, who appears in the film and in Travis’ other ongoing project, In Their Room. Jesse offered candid reflections and insight into pornography, sex in film, and staying hard throughout a shoot. Spoiler alert: “penis drugs.”

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Immigration update: good news, bad news

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Yesterday, the Board of Supervisors unanimously appointed tireless immigrant rights advocate Angela Chan to the San Francisco Police Commission.
That’s the good news. Read more »