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Around the world with SF International Film Festival documentaries

This Week's Paper

 Tons of SFIFF film fest previews. Plus: Sunday parking fail, leftie Gov candidates, California punk, 'Tribes,' mapo tofu, more. Articles Online | Digital Edition

From the Blogs

Is Chevron lying about its crude plans?

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By Adam Lesser

William Rostov, the Earthjustice lawyer who represents three Bay Area environmental groups, broke it down: “The question is: will it be heavier and will that result in more pollution?” He was speaking about crude oil refining at Chevron’s Richmond refinery as he addressed California’s First Appellate Court in San Francisco this morning. Heavier crude oil is usually less expensive for oil companies to purchase but generates more pollution during the refining process.Read more »

Editorial: No more silence on PG&E’s statewide power grab

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Every single elected official, candidate for office, and political group in the state that isn't entirely bought off by PG&E needs to loudly oppose Prop. 16 - now Read more »

The attack on the SF left

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If I were a political consultant hired by the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce and the big developers and the landlords and Mayor Newsom, and my job was to launch an effective attack on the progressive movement in the city and undermine progressive control of the Board of Supervisors, here’s what I’d do:Read more »

A look back at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival (part two)

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For part one of Jesse's Sundance report, click here.

Rounding out the mumblecore minions was Cyrus from the genre-defining Duplass Brothers. Even while having name actors (John C. Reilly, Marisa Tomei, Catherine Keener, and Jonah Hill) as well as a seven million dollar budget to play around with (by comparison, their first film, 2005's The Puffy Chair, cost $15,000), the siblings have not lost one iota of their charm or sincere humor. And most importantly, these characters and situations (no matter how complicated things get) are explored with depth and honesty. Jonah Hill is still the Jonah Hill from Judd Apatow films, but here he's finally been allowed to explore his creepy-sad side, enabling a viewer to truly relate to his character, a son who's a little too overprotective of his single mom. During what was one of Sundance's greatest 9 a.m. Q&As, the hung-over directors and cast laughed about how they have no clue how to market this film. My suggestion: don't miss Cyrus, sure to be one of the funniest, and most unexpectedly poignant, films of 2010. Read more »

John Yoo's torturous book tour

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By Adrian Castaneda and Steven T. Jones

John Yoo – the infamous author of legal memos justifying torture for the Bush Administration and a controversial UC Berkeley law professor – continued his surreal book tour yesterday, stopping in San Francisco yesterday to appear on KQED’s forum.Read more »

Sunday parking in the Mission

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I'm not surprised that merchants in the Mission want to retain free parking on Sundays. Times are tough for neighborhood businesses, and anything that would seem to discourage customers is frightening.

Of course, if the city doesn't expand parking meter hours, it's going to have to make even further cuts in Muni, which could impact the merchants even more.Read more »

Breakfast with a hot Guerrilla

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By Robyn Johnson

My social media tuning fork started vibrating with reports of a new street food vendor making ground in Oakland. My unmitigated Oaktown pride compelled me to investigate.

Guerrilla Grub has indeed set up shop at the prime commuter hub of the MacArthur BART stop, serving breakfast burritos out of a pushcart adorned with its evocative fist-gripping-a-fork logo for early morning riders. Besides the hot dog guy, I have never seen a street food vendor at MacArthur. In fact, outside of Fruitvale taco trucks and the odd ambitious cupcakers at Art Murmur, I haven’t seen a street food vendor anywhere in the East Bay. Could a true revolution be at hand?

Read more »

Live Shots: De La Soul, Yoshi's Fillmore, 02/12/2010

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By Chhavi Nanda

Word came that De La Soul's flight was delayed, but they'd still make it. Anticipation levels rose to a fever pitch in the crowd. Fumes from the blunt smoke hazed the faces of the eager fans. Then finally, they made their entrance on to stage chanting "De La" with the audience responding with a unison scream "Soul!"

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Gung Hay Fat Choy!

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If 2010 wasn’t enough new year for you, fret not -- for Chinese New Year is upon us in all its glory. The holiday season (which actually started on Valentine’s Day) culminates this weekend with a firecracker explosion of Asian culture and showmanship. San Francisco does the new year big, bigger than any city outside of Asia, in fact. We suggest you get out your red clothes, mandarin oranges, and yusheng raw fish salad (all believed to bring good fortune for your next 365 days) and hit up some of the following events. This is one of those weekends that make our city great.

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Just what we need: Guns in the park

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Okay, here's some excellent news: You can now carry a concealed weapon in a national park. So when I'm hiking in Muir Woods or the GGNRA, I can look forward to running into a gun toter. I hope my dog doesn't pee on his leg.

 

Hey Matier & Ross -- PG&E is no security blanket

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Today’s San Francisco Chronicle piece by Phillip Matier and Andrew Ross brought to mind a Pacific Gas & Electric Co.-sponsored Web site that was set up to undermine the city’s fledgling Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) program.

That’s because one of the key points in the story was that San Francisco’s CCA could result in higher customer bills. According to the Chronicle:

"A 2007 city controller's report concluded that a typical residential utility bill under this type of plan could go up by 24 percent if only half the purchased energy is green. The cost would almost certainly go even higher if the city went totally green, the report said."

This city controller’s report is referenced on the PG&E-funded Web site, too, and this supposed 24 percent increase was splashed prominently across colorful outsized postcards that the PG&E-sponsored “Common Sense Coalition” sent to businesses and residences throughout the city last December. However, San Francisco’s Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCo), a city commission responsible for setting CCA in motion, maintains that the claim is misleading.

Why?

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Snap Sounds: Elephant9

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ELEPHANT9

Walk the Nile

(Rune Grammofon)

Norwegian power trio Elephant9 lays on the acid-laced, "wildly cavorting in fields of fusion" prog -- light on the kraut and pop, more in tune with the jazz -- on their second long-player, Walk the Nile.

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Why taxes need to be on SF's budget table

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San Francisco missed an opportunity last fall. While communities around the Bay Area were approving new revenue plans, addressing devastating budget cuts in part by raising their own taxes, San Francisco's mayor and supervisors were sitting on their hands, bewailing the fact that passing tax measures is tough.Read more »

This is what you get, Gavin

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For hiring a scorched-earth guy like Garry South, who will turn on you in a second.

Timothy Leary: now for cats

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See video

Olympic ice dancing had me in its graceful, creepy thrall last night -- until this freaky Friskies psychedelic ash-id trip took all that gliding glitter to a whole nutha level. Yes, The Awl has live-blogged it.