Occupy SF: The eviction drumbeat begins


We all knew that Mayor Lee wouldn't risk sending the cops in to evict OccupySF until after the election. But now the newspaper drumbeat has begun -- the place is filthy, there's shoplifting nearby and (gasp) the Ferry Building has to spend more money on toilet paper.

There's an easy solution to the toilet paper problem: Install and maintain some more portable toilets near the camp. Not difficult, not expensive. And when you have that many people around (the camp keeps growing) and some of them have been living on the streets for a long time, having to hustle to stay alive, it's not surprising that some cookies have been stolen. For the most part, the camp is pretty self-sufficient and there's plenty of food, but if theft is a problem, a couple more beat cops at the Ferry Building would probably put a lid on it.

It's too bad the Bay is so cold at this time of year; a quick dip with some Dr. Bronner's would solve the need for the alleged sponge baths (and I just can't imagine anything worse than the thought of a few people washing themselves off in a .... bathroom). It really wouldn't be hard to install a solar shower on the scene, if the Department of Public works cooperated.

We all know there are going to be challenges dealing with a growing outdoor encampment in the middle of a big city. But this is something special, something important, a popular movement that's responding to an emergency situation in the United States. This is a sophisticated city; we can deal.

But just as the merchants complaining in Oakland is putting pressure on Mayor Jean Quan, this sort of stuff will put pressure on Lee to send in the cops. Ugh.



Agreed. Let's make the Embarcadero a giant outdoor campground.

Toilets for all!

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 12:59 pm

And have a campground for the, urban camper political warrior counter protest.

There should be a tea party camp on one side of the line and the catch all leftism camp on the other side. Since the tea party people are not interested, the Haight St hobo's and whatnot could move in. or just move over the line. I doubt they could articulate the different positions anyways.

Then when there is a stabbing, robbery assault or various piles of poop are found about, the Guardian could blame the tea party camp and demand its removal because the tea party is racist or unPC in some other way.

Posted by matlock on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 1:23 pm

If people come to the city and break its law, but agree with Tim Redmond's politics they should be given free things at the tax payers expense.

Unlike the average progressive, I feel that law abiding citizens should be in general left alone to buy their cigarettes where they what, feed their kids what they want, own handguns if they are not felons, and even hobo camp out in the city over some political whatever, as long as they are not a menace.

These camps across the nation are becoming a menace.

This is also interesting in that the progressive statists keep making exceptions to their statism based on political expediency. We all need to obey the myriad laws they dream up, but if you are out camping for catch all leftism downtown, then the city should buy and rent things for you, because Tim Redmond agrees with your politics.

Posted by matlock on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 1:16 pm

As usual, your ignorance robs you of any coherence. If you bothered to learn what words mean, you wouldn't make such an ass of yourself.

men·ace   [men-is] Show IPA noun, verb, -aced, -ac·ing.
1. something that threatens to cause evil, harm, injury, etc.; a threat: Air pollution is a menace to health.
2. a person whose actions, attitudes, or ideas are considered dangerous or harmful: When he gets behind the wheel of a car, he's a real menace.

And here's matlock:
3. an extremely annoying person.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 5:28 pm

I'm all for people doing their own thing,

If they want to protest the cost of Ipods or the lack of portable toilets at burningman at Market and Main, more power to them. And if they are camping down at the Ferry building doing that, awesome.

But we have moved on beyond that. It the 60's it took a few years for the Mansonists druggies and fuck up to ruin Utopia, it took a few weeks for the meth folks and burnouts to move in on the occupy camp grounds.

Learn to read guest, I think that if you have an actual political statement to make, then you should be left alone by the state. At this point the occupy SF people are just comical, and they are not obeying the laws that progressives love. Not obeying the law pisses off SF progressives when it is not working out for them.

Posted by matlock on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 6:39 pm

Held off until after the election. he can act more confidently now he has a clear mandate

Waited for the bad weather to set in. I walked by the camp earlier today and those peeps looked miserable

Let the squalor and petty crime rise to the point where there is public pressure to act, and even possible lawsuits against the city for not enforcing the law.

Deflect attention from the banks, so they can operate normally. OSF seems to have forgotten about them.

Waited until the news cycle died down.

Of course, Oakland will have to act on theirs, now there's been a murder.

The festival is over, kids.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 2:00 pm

Hey guest, I was there today too and there were lots of people smiling and dancing to the eleven bands lined up to play. What Occupy where you at?

Posted by Freeman on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 3:36 pm

But they won't be there much longer. The public are getting tired of the filth, squalor and crime.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 4:49 pm

Then you won't sound like a whiny sack of shit trying to spread lies.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 5:33 pm

Right of free speech and assembly. All for it.

Right to keep occupying public space, breaking laws against overnight camping, costing the city (and me as a taxpayer) money for added sanitation, policing; costing merchants money with depressed sales and shoplifting problems - not so much. You raised a lot of great issues. What, you think more drum circles will actually get the socio-economic and political machines to start changing? Go home. Take a hot shower in your own bathroom. Then work for change in your own community/neighborhood. Run for office. Volunteer. You made your point. But you're starting to move from consciousness-raising to nuisance. Fast. I agree with a lot of the sentiment. But I'm pretty tired of the whole camp. Oh, and clean up the place when you leave, willya? (And let me get this straight - some think the City is obligated to spend money it doesn't have to provide you with toilets, first aid stations, drinking water, etc? Why on earth? If I decide to go camp in the plaza and put up a sign, will they provide them for me? I wouldn't expect it. Neither should you.)

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 4:31 pm

However, nobody at Occupy is interested in the "Anonymous Conservative Troll's Rules For Protesting".

Americans do not need your permission to exercise their Constitutional rights, so fuck off.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 5:32 pm

I would love to see the people down at the occupy tents do their thing.

It took a few years to fuck up the hippies Utopia, it took a few weeks to turn the occupy camp ground into a meth fueled hole.

You should be mad at the fuck ups, not at the people who point it out.

Posted by matlock on Nov. 11, 2011 @ 7:21 pm

Awesome Statement!!!! So true in so many ways!!! Also keep your rants and raves to yourself around children! They don't understand what is going on.

Posted by Guest on Dec. 01, 2011 @ 8:01 pm

While I support the Occupy Movement, I am connected to the Ferry Building and have lots of friends who work both inside and out at the vendors tents who have been impacted by the more unsavory elements of the camp. Shoplifting has gone up exponentially and we're not talking just cookies here. Further more, just because it is a tourist destination doesn't mean there are a ton of rich folks wafting around. We workers are a humble lot and many of the businesses are small farms, mom and pop kind of shops and stealing has hit the bottom line for a number of folks here. No need to worry about the restrooms, the bathrooms are well stocked and overall there is no problem with more folks using the facilities, but security has had their arms full with cleaning up the massive amounts of graffiti, feces smeared in the bathrooms, etc. We had a woman last week squat in the women's bathroom and relieve herself right there on the floor, numbers 1 & 2. A friend outside at the tents had the contents of her table with all her wears taken right before her, and another friend witnessed a person defecating a few feet from her stall in the early hours of the morning. While, this is a handful of folks who are operating like this, it still creates tension and takes some of the wind out of the movement. I love what Occupy stands for, I get it, I'm down. Just a little respect all around for everyone would be cool.

Posted by SF Love on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 2:15 am

And some contextualization that for my time in San Francisco, such unmentionables are regularly tolerated in that crescent of residential neighborhoods that runs from the TL through western SOMA to the North Mission known by the SFPD as "the containment zone."

The City has allowed an occupation which is clearly free speech. The City regularly vacates sidewalks for private purposes and cannot deny the vacation of a sidewalk for free speech purposes. Popular support for the Occupation remains higher than popular support for Ed Lee as measured by the pathetic percentage of registered voters whose votes put him over the top.

The City is in a lose-lose situation.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 7:52 am

Their right to be there interferes with my right to use public land. It also breaks various city ordinances re public health, licensing requirements and so on.

The city has every right to remove the camp, and it looks like cities across the land have had enough, and are symchronizing their removal.

This is done. Time to move on.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 8:47 am

When a public space is being used for speech and democratic assembly by members of -the public-, competing uses by -other- members of the public, must make a compelling case that they should prevail over that free speech and democratic assembly use.

Posted by Aragorn on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 9:28 am

The city allows private entities to control public space all the time, sidewalk seating, for instance. Cars parked for weeks in parking spaces. Special events like Oracle World. Street fairs. Food carts in Dolores Park, Civic Center Plaza, Farmers Markets, the list goes on. If the City allows it for commercial purposes then it has to allow it for first amendment purposes.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 9:39 am
Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 11:33 am

just as it does for private activities. (And in the case of public assembly for purposes of political speech, a permit is not necessarily required at all.)

No difference whatsoever.

Posted by Aragorn on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 1:22 pm

They not esigned to allow permanent and exclusive occupation.

And anyway, OSF didn't apply for a permit.

I'm going to guess it will be closed down in the middle of the night, perhaps as soon as Sunday.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 4:24 pm

I was not aware that the first amendment had language requiring permits for the free exercise thereof.

As far as short- versus long-term goes, when asked in the 1950s what his thoughts were on the consequences of the French Revolution, Chinese Communist premier Chou En Lai said "It is too soon to tell."

Short term, long term, it is all relative.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 6:22 pm

Let's l look at this one...the people responsible for Oracle World follow all of the rules that the rest of us have voted for. They create hundreds of jobs, albeit temporary, but I don't hear any of the people taking them complaining. They cover their own costs, pay the city additional fees and their conference brings visitors from all over the world to spend money in the city.

To contrast against the OWS camp you need look no further than Tim cavalier statement 'a few street cops could handle the problem'. Yup, because we can just pay cops with the money that we find hidden in the couch.

Posted by District 3 Vet on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 10:49 am

So how long does it take a solar shower to heat up 100 gallons of water given San Francisco's weather? Let's see, there are about 100 occupies times 10 gallons each,...you do the math. Oh, and who pays for all the for it all. No the campers ( I hope).

Posted by Guest on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 8:48 am

If these people really want to camp out?

I think there are some more remote parts of the city where they would not cause such disruptions and risks to public safety and health.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 12, 2011 @ 4:34 pm

I expect OSF to be neutralized in the next few days

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 7:23 am
Posted by Guest on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 9:46 am

Ed Lee realizes that many times more San Franciscans support the Occupation than voted for him for mayor.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 10:10 am

There are laws to uphold that trump political sentiment. The majority doesn't always get it's way.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 10:28 am

And you of all people should understand this.

I'm sure that if polled the vast majority of Noe Valley residents would express sympathy with the movement... until they went down for their monthly trip to the Whole Foods of farmers markets at Pier 39 and actually saw the place.

Then, not so much.

I think progressives consistently overestimate the *depth* of support for progressive causes in present day San Francisco. It's very surface level. Occupy SF has reached just far enough to break the comfort zone.

Don't get me wrong, I hardly think Ed Lee has widespread support in this City. In fact, I already think he's off to a marginal start with his declarations that he wants to be a "salesman" for the City (really, just awful on that one, Ed - you got elected as a manager, dumbass, not a face man).

But yeah, I don't think shutting down Occupy (which is taking place throughout the country) would cause a threatening backlash against Lee. You will see outrage, but it would be from the people who already hated him. The majority will either support the move or be indifferent.

Posted by Longtime Lurker on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 11:10 am

Funny how as soon as something real is at stake, principles do a 180.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 14, 2011 @ 2:24 pm

I wish the Occupy movement would use their energy to actually accomplish something productive. The fatal link between banking and the governments of the Western world threatens the entire global economy and the fuse has been lit in the European Union. Italian and Spanish bond yields are spiking up to near 7%, an unsustainable level at which these countries will no longer be able to finance the public debt or run the day to day functioning of the government. It is the US subprime crisis Euro - style only one hundred times bigger. Within a very short period of time the banks of the world will be in a position to blackmail the governments to force the taxpayers to take the losses on their risky bets. "Bail us out or we will destroy the global economy and cause the next Great Depression" Can't someone in the Occupy movement clarify what actually needs to be done to keep the banks and financiers of the world in line? For example, the underwriting of credit default swaps on sovereign debt is actually a form of insurance fraud. If the attorney general and justice department had any guts they would break up the oligopoly of large banks which control and manipulate the derivatives market to their satisfaction and profits. What is the Occupy movement doing to stop this?

In the city where I live, Philadelphia, the entire movement is a disgusting joke. Women are being raped, people are urinating on the sidewalk and no one is addressing the real issues. People please. Protest on the sidewalk and clarify what needs to be accomplished or you are wasting your time

Posted by Traderkitten on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 5:06 am

for something like Habitat for Humanity, building homes for the poor.

Except of course that they'd much rather whine on the sidewalk.

Luckily, the public is starting to see through them and are getting tired of the incovenience, squalor and crime.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 8:14 am

Alternately, you conservative crybabies should shut the fuck up.

Your hand wringing, over the methods of people you constantly condemned prior to this, is pathetic. No one is asking for your help or cooperation.
No one is asking your permission.
They don't need it.
The Constitution grants all of us the right to do what OWS has been doing for months.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 10:09 am

basis for the cops to eject these people. You cannot seize private land for your own purposes.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 10:46 am

Believing that constitutionality is decided by what action police take is moronic.
The Constitution governs the police, not the other way around.
No one has "seized private land" either.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 11:07 am

I'm not a fan of Krugman type liberal economists who think more debt to "create" jobs is the answer to anything other than more of the status quo, with more power and wealth eventually funneled to the financial elites. (Instead, we need job-sharing, allowing people to choose shorter work weeks to "create" jobs. It's the Age of Leisure, not the Age of Indebted Labor.) But his column from last Tuesday highlights a few fun, classic soundbites from anti-occupation usual suspects.

Keep up the great work occupiers. It appears politicians are finally starting to listen and may be open to a few concessions if the pressure, positive energy, and public support keeps up. Let's hope Thursday's planned activities at various California colleges will attract lots of student, faculty and public interest and participation. Maybe the Open University movement will get a return performance...everyone a teacher, everyone a student.

Paul Krugman: Plutocrats, fearing scrutiny, demonize Occupy Wall Street
"Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, has denounced "mobs" and "the pitting of Americans against Americans." The GOP presidential candidates have weighed in, with Mitt Romney accusing the protesters of waging "class warfare," while Herman Cain calls them "anti-American." My favorite, however, is Sen. Rand Paul, who for some reason worries that the protesters will start seizing iPads, because they believe rich people don't deserve to have them.

Michael Bloomberg, New York's mayor and a financial-industry titan in his own right, was a bit more moderate, but still accused the protesters of trying to "take the jobs away from people working in this city," a statement that bears no resemblance to the movement's actual goals.

And if you were listening to talking heads on CNBC, you learned that the protesters "let their freak flags fly" and are "aligned with Lenin."


Posted by Guest on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 2:27 pm

we can find with the left bemoaning the tea party.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 15, 2011 @ 3:30 pm