Politics Blog

Eyewitness account from Molotov’s conflicts with Google Glass Explorer’s story

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A Google Glass "Explorer" and social media consultant from San Mateo made international headlines after visiting San Francisco for being “verbally and physically assaulted ... because of some Google Glass haters,” she wrote on Facebook.

But her official account of the incident as reported to police conflicts with an eyewitness account from someone who saw the fight unfold.Read more »

Big Soda's sketchy grassroots support

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The Guardian published a story today fact checking a list of local businesses who oppose the Sugary Beverage Tax, a list used by American Beverage Association funded publicists to slam the tax. The story is getting a lot of attention from health advocates and neighborhood businesses, but the Guardian has heard one question over and over: "Where can we see the list?"Read more »

Bike registry program nets 500 in first two weeks

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A new program registering San Francisco bicycles and their owners enrolled just over 500 bicyclists in its first two weeks, a small success story in the effort to reunite riders with their stolen bicycles. 

The program in question is Safe Bikes, a joint venture between the SFPD and SF Safe. Cyclists can log onto their website, register their bike’s make and model, and when victims report a bike theft to police they can be reunited with their two wheeled friend just as easily. There are 75,000 bike riders a day in San Francisco, according to the Budget and Legislative Analyst’s office, a buffet of tantalizing goods for bike thieves.  

More than 500 bikes is a small dent in that number, but for only a two week start it isn’t too bad. Safe Bikes Manager Morgan St. Clair said they’ve only just begun their outreach. Next month they plan to host an event at Twitter headquarters, where they’ll give away 50 Kryptonite locks, funded by the San Francisco Police Officers Association. Read more »

Is Newsom on the wrong side of high-speed rail history?

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As California struggles to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and meet the long-term transportation needs of a growing population, officials from Gov. Jerry Brown to Mayor Ed Lee have steadfastly supported the embattled California High-Speed Rail Project, which Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom recently withdrew his support from. Read more »

UC Berkeley drops hyperlocal news website Mission Local

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A memo released today revealed a striking split that could affect media coverage in the Mission district: hyperlocal news site Mission Local is being dropped by its main fiscal sponsor, the University of California Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

“It’s now time for Mission Local to take the next step and re-launch itself as an independent, stand-alone media operation,” J-School Dean Edward Wasserman wrote in a department-wide memo. “That means ending its role in the J-School’s curriculum.”Read more »

Wiener’s resolution to study waterfront initiative written by its opponents

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Developers and activists are once again at odds over San Francisco’s waterfront, arguably the most valuable bit of land in one of America’s most expensive cities. Ahead of a June ballot initiative that would require voter approval for proposed waterfront buildings that exceed current height limits, development groups are already reaching out to politicians to tip the scales in their favor.Read more »

Ammiano and Leno seek to reform the Ellis Act and slow SF evictions [UPDATED]

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State lawmakers from San Francisco are launching a two-pronged attack on the Ellis Act, which real estate speculators are increasingly using to evict tenants from rent-controlled apartments and cash in on a housing market that's been heated up by demand from high-paid employees of the booming tech sector.Read more »

Speakers boycotting security conference to protest collaboration with NSA

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On Feb. 24, the world’s largest computer security conference, RSA, will commence at San Francisco’s Moscone Center. It’s a huge deal: Speakers will include Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and closing remarks will be given by comedian Stephen Colbert.

Started in 1991, the RSA Conference has grown exponentially. But this year, 13 digital security experts have canceled their scheduled talks in protest of recent revelations that RSA cooperated with the National Security Agency to use a flawed tool for safeguarding sensitive information.Read more »

Tougher library policies would penalize homeless patrons for sleeping, body odor

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The way homeless residents are treated in San Francisco has come under scrutiny lately, with recent reports of homeless individuals being sprayed with hoses by Department of Public Works staff who started doing early-morning sidewalk cleanings nearby Twitter’s mid-Market headquarters.Read more »

Chiu and others get stung for support from speculators and evictors

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Our colleagues down the hall at the San Francisco Examiner seem to have spoiled tonight’s [Thu/30] fundraiser for David Chiu’s Assembly race by reporting this hour that the host, attorney Steven MacDonald, is on a housing activists’ blacklist for representing landlords in controversial Ellis Act evictions.Read more »