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LEFT OF THE DIAL Wye Oak's Jenn Wasner on the band's new sound, and the doubts she overcame to create her favorite record yet. Plus: BARF #2, and Viracocha is back!

This Week's Paper

weekcoverThe City's Garbage Game: recology fudges recycling numbers as the city cracks down on can collectors . Plus: Muay Thai action, Wye Oak, the Wizard of ODD tornadoes into the Castro, more. Articles Online | Digital Edition

From the Blogs

Shrimp Boy denied bail

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Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow, who has a criminal history in Chinese gangs and was indicted along with Sen. Leland Yee and a slew of others in a high-profile FBI operation, was denied bail June 11.Read more »

New minimum wage proposal less ambitious, has broader support

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San Francisco bears the unfortunate distinction of having the fastest-growing income inequality nationwide. At the same time, the city may retain its more progressive status as having the highest nationwide minimum wage -- if voters approve a November ballot measure unveiled today by Mayor Ed Lee and 10 members of the Board of Supervisors.

The consensus measure would increase the minimum wage for all San Francisco employees to $15 an hour by 2018. Currently, the city's lowest-paid workers earn $10.74 per hour under the existing minimum wage ordinance.Read more »

SFMTA launches "Google Bus" pilot program map, promises increased enforcement

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The Google Bus plan is now rolling forward. Last night [Mon/9] the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency released a map of shuttle stops to be studied in the contentious commuter shuttle pilot program, and proposed new means of cracking down on shuttle scofflaws.Read more »

Campos wins veto-proof support for closing the city healthcare coverage loophole UPDATED

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Sup. David Campos appears to have finally succeeded in his years-long quest to prevent San Francisco employers from pocketing money the city requires them to use for employee health care costs after winning over two key supervisors to secure a veto-proof majority at today’s [Tues/10] Board of Supervisors meeting.Read more »

The under-celebrated influence of Guided By Voices

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In a conversation about '90s rock staples the other day, a friend casually mentioned that he'd never really listened to Guided By Voices, a statement that provoked in me a somewhat surprising level of panic, alongside a strange sense of injustice.

"Here!" I cried, throwing on the starter-friendly greatest hits compilation Human Amusements at Hourly Rates. "Listen!" He listened politely for a few songs.

"They sound like every other lo-fi indie band from the mid-'90s onward," he said.Read more »

Transportation funding faces key test after Mayor Lee flips on VLF increase UPDATED

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Facing a deadline of tomorrow’s [Tues/10] San Francisco Board of Supervisors meeting to introduce measures for the November ballot, advocates for addressing the city’s massive long-term transportation funding gap still hope to introduce an increase in the local vehicle license fee, even though the once-supportive Mayor Ed Lee has gotten cold feet.Read more »

Venture capitalist cat-fight as Ron Conway angrily defends Mayor Ed Lee

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Wealthy Silicon Valley venture capitalist Ron Conway shouted down a fellow VC at Bloomberg's Next Big Thing summit, after VC Chamath Palihapitiya dared criticize Ron's biggest political investment: Mayor Ed Lee.Read more »

The Pogues' James Fearnley on Shane MacGowan, the difference time can make, and the diary that became his new memoir

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Mixing a high proof distillation from the sounds of traditional Irish folk music with the piss and vinegar attitude and energy of punk rock, The Pogues burst upon the music scene in London in 1984 with Red Roses For Me, and further established themselves with the albums that followed, such as Rum, Sodomy and the Lash (1985), and what many consider to be their masterpiece, If I Should Fall From Grace With God (1988).Read more »

Party Radar: Daybreaker gets you moving - on a Tuesday morning

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Back in 1988, I hung out for a summer in West Berlin. Yep, this was before the wall fell, when West Berlin was a roiling, hyperactive, neon-crazy island in a sea of Communist repression -- kind of like the most exclusive nightclub in the world.

One of the things that took my breath away: high school kids and college students went to clubs before school. At least the few I knew would met their friends around 5-6am at the all-night club du jour and dance it out for a while before heading to class. "This is the best place in the world!" I thought at the time.

Also: "Why can't we have this?" Well, now we kinda do. Welcome to San Francisco, Daybreaker.

Read more »

Norman Solomon: Obama escalates his war on journalism

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By Norman Solomon

 (Norman Solomon is executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and co-founder of RootsAction.org. His books include “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.” Information about the documentary based on the book is at www.WarMadeEasyTheMovie.org.)

In a memoir published this year, the CIA’s former top legal officer John Rizzo says that on the last day of 2005 a panicky White House tried to figure out how to prevent the distribution of a book by New York Times reporter James Risen. Officials were upset because Risen’s book, State of War, exposed what -- in his words -- “may have been one of the most reckless operations in the modern history of the CIA.”

The book told of a bungled CIA attempt to set back Iran’s nuclear program in 2000 by supplying the Iranian government with flawed blueprints for nuclear-bomb design. The CIA’s tactic might have actually aided Iranian nuclear development. Read more »

Tune in to SFBG's Alternative Ink, sickout edition! LISTEN NOW

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Spend your Sunday night with the dedicated staff here at the Bay Guardian, for two hours of local music and lively, information talk during our bi-weekly Alternative Ink radio show from 6-8pm Sunday, June 8, on BFF.fm. UPDATE: Listen to the show hereRead more »

Middle fingers to the sky, Lady Gaga takes San Jose for an artRAVEy ride

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There are a lot of critiques that I can make about Lady Gaga’s Tuesday night performance in San Jose — the sports arena acoustics, the horrifically boring opening acts, the focus on her new and less popular album Artpop, $80 sweatshirts, the fact that she performed some of her most popular tunes in truncated versions and neglected to play “LoveGame” altogether — but the fact is, none of these shortcomings made a dent in the incredible energy and impassioned performance that Gaga dished out. The show was fucking incredible.Read more »

New historical hipster photos showcase big-wheeled bikes from San Francisco to Oakland circa 1880

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Hipsters and bikes are as close as Instagram posts of five dollar cups of organic, free trade, Japanese drip coffee. Historical photos recently posted to the California Historical Society’s Flickr page show cycling clubs of the late 19th-century riding around the Bay Area. Yes this includes Oakland, more than a century before Oakland was cool (just kidding, Oakland was always cool).Read more »

Chevron refinery expansion permitted before environmental review, lawsuit charges

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Communities for a Better Environment, known for its watchdog efforts around Chevron's Richmond oil refinery, has filed a lawsuit against the Bay Area Air Quality Management District for authorizing a permit to Chevron for a refinery construction project that’s still undergoing environmental review.

The project, known as a “modernization” in Chevron lingo, would essentially make it easier for the oil giant to process lower-quality crude, an industrial practice that CBE contends could significantly increase greenhouse-gas emissions.Read more »

New appointments to Sunshine Ordinance Task Force may help government watchdogs grow teeth

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In a win for government transparency, a slew of strong new appointments for a city government watchdog group cleared their first round of approvals yesterday.Read more »