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SF General — a top trauma center, important safety net, and major city commitment to public health — moves into an uncertain transition period

This Week's Paper

coverLife and death at SF General as everyone's hospital moves into an uncertain period, BART's new policy of rousing vagrants, MEX I AM's latin sounds hit Yerba Bunea Center, and Wolrd War I Films blow up the screen at PFA. Articles Online | Digital Edition

From the Blogs

Ecuador natives push Chevron for settlement

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By Nima Maghame

The Rainforest Action Network, a non-profit organization that protests the pollution and destruction of natural habitats around the world, recently gathered on a bio-diesel bus named Priscilla with Ecuadorian tribal representative Emergildo Criollo and drove to new Chevron CEO John Watson's home in Lafayette to deliver a petition demanding the company pay for the clean up of Chevron-owned Texaco's contamination of the Ecuadorian Amazon rain forest.

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Editorial: Needed -- some teeth for the San Francisco sunshine law

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EDITORIAL The San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance is a national model for open government, the first and strongest local sunshine law in the country. It was written to improve public access to government records and meetings, and to clear up some of the problems and loopholes in state law. On paper, it makes San Francisco a shining example of how concerned residents can come together and eliminate secrecy at City Hall.Read more »

"Remember Me" is -- you guessed it -- forgettable

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Ominously set in New York City during the summer of 2001, Remember Me, starring Robert Pattinson (of the Twilight series) and Emilie de Ravin (of TV's Lost), pretty much answers the question of whether it’s still too soon to make the events of September 11 the subject of a date movie.

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Campos on the next mayor

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Just spoke with Sup. David Campos, who has some interesting thoughts on the next mayor and whether the supervisors should seek to change the City Charter to create a special election instead of filling a mayoral vacancy by appointment.

"I don't have a problem with people having the final say," Campos told me. "And they will, since there will be an election for mayor next year anyway.Read more »

Daly for mayor?

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Sup. Chris Daly just called to comment on the selection of the next mayor of San Francisco. Gavin Newsom may want to change the Charter to mandate a special election if there's a vacancy in the Mayor's Office (thus preventing the district-elected supes from choosing a new mayor if he's elected lieutenant governor). Read more »

All those white judges

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Michael Nava, who is running for Superior Court judge in San Francisco, tipped me to a fascinating document that's on the website of the California Judicial Council. It's a spreadsheet breaking down the ethnicity and gender of all the justices and trial court judges in the state. And it's pretty depressing.

In 2010, 73 percent of all trial court judges in the state are white, and 70 percent are male. A full 81 percent of the Court of Appeal judges are white, and 70 percent are male. That's astonishing.Read more »

Take off your clothes! World Naked Bike Ride, spring edition

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Strap on your helmet and strip down to your skin— it’s time to ride bikes in the buff. San Francisco regularly participates in the ‘Northern Hemisphere’ World Naked Bike Ride each summer, but Saturday (3/13) marks the city’s first inclusion in the Southern Hemisphere’s jaunt. Spring or summer, the ride aims to expose the dangers bicyclists and pedestrians face in a car-dominated culture and to protest against “indecent exposure to vehicle emissions.”  

Bay Area bicyclists will join pedaling nudes in Sydney, Cape Town, Lima, and other Southern parts of the globe this weekend, flashing their junk on two wheels for a “critical mass with a lenient dress code.” The crowd will cruise from Justin Herman Plaza to Golden Gate Park, stopping at City Hall for a photo shoot. Because this is the virgin spring fling, the group may be small, but definitely not shy.

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Gav's running for (lite) guv!

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It’s not any big surprise that Gavin Newsom is officially running for lieutenant governor; we all knew that was in the cards. Newsom’s downtown allies don’t want him running, because he might win -- which would mean a vacancy in the mayor’s office. But it’s really all about Newsom, and he doesn’t want to be termed out with nowhere to go.Read more »

Owen Pallett deals with rain, spectacularly

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See video

The official video for Canadian Owen Pallett's (aka Final Fantasy) gossamer-gutwrench "Lewis Takes Off His Shirt" from the new Heartland is a Ryan Trecartin-esque romp with witchy hats, hockey masks, Balloon Boy, Orange Crush, jumbly geometrical soap sculpture, and self-stabbing.

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Supes pass resolution protecting SF Patrol Special Police Officers

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Jane Warner, or “Officer Jane” as she’s known throughout the Castro, had a rough Christmas Eve. It started when Warner, a San Francisco Patrol Special Police officer who was out walking the foot beat, was alerted that a fight had broken out at Trigger, a bar on Market Street. When she arrived, she says she encountered a drunk and belligerent man. “He got more excited and charged the doormen, he pushed me, I pushed him back, and I said, ‘You’re under arrest,’” Warner told the Guardian shortly after the incident occurred. “He started to walk away from me, I drew my baton, I hit him twice, and he turned around and he hit me and I went to block his punch and he broke my arm,” at which point she fell to the ground in pain. “It cracked the bone right between the elbow and the shoulder,” she said. Read more »

Bill Barnes leaps into the District 10 race

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The already crowded field of candidates battling to become the next D 10 supervisor just got even more crowded.

Bill Barnes, who is currently working as Sup. Michela Alioto-Pier's legislative aide, and has previously served as researcher for SF Firefighters Local 798, legislative aide for Sup. Fiona Ma, and legislative aide and campaign manager for Sup. Chris Daly, has entered the race. Read more »

Elusive finger-picker Ed Masuga reappears with five shows

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By Chloe Roth

For the past four years, Ed Masuga has consistently delivered pure folk music. His dichotomously sharp finger-picking guitar and soft melodies make for easy, pleasing listening, and if you close your eyes you might find yourself transported to a Dust Bowl-era railway car. Steeped heavily in the folk tradition, his songs are simultaneously old-fashioned, timeless, and timely. With the bare minimum of Internet presence, the elusive San Francisco-based songster, though he can't be called a Bay Area "native," maintains a mysterious backwoodsman identity. The almost literary stories of his youth seem to come straight out of a Dickens novel. I caught up with Mr. Masuga (that has a nice ring to it!) to ask him how his itinerant childhood has informed his work.

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Snap Sounds: Rollercoaster Project

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ROLLERCOASTER PROJECT
Revenge
(Absolutely Kosher)

A Dickens quote culled from A Child’s History of England and the note, “All songs made with careful horror and loving attention” accompany the second album, Revenge, by The Rollercoaster Project (ne Johnny White). Spectral, spooked, and downright epic in its use of tweaked audio, cassette tapes, samples, synthesizers, and piano, it gently tags the film score work by Popul Vuh, sending a listener off on mind travel, far from petty retribution.

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Politics and redistricting: The madness in SF's future

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The political merry-go-round in San Francisco going to be whirling at light speed soon. It’s partially the fault of term limits -- over the next couple of years, some very talented, ambitious politicians are going to be forced to leave local office, and they’re looking for the next step. Part of it is the confluence of a bunch of events, starting with Mayor Gavin Newsom and District Attorney Kamala Harris both seeking statewide office.

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Hydrolyzed vegetable protein paste -- now with more salmonella!

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By Robyn Johnson

If you love hydrolyzed vegetable protein paste and/ or powder -- you know, that savory flavoring that is nearly ubiquitous in processed foods -- then you might want to check out this list just put out by the FDA. It's a growing product recall for possible salmonella contamination. 

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