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News and Politics | San Francisco Bay Guardian

Careers and Ed: Cocktail frosh

Mixed Drinks 101: Can a two-week bartending course impart real-world pouring skills?
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culture@sfbg.com

Swanky-ass bars, high-end restaurants, sex, drugs — they're all great things to love about San Francisco, but they can be cruel and constant symbols of failure to the scrilla deprived. With one-bedroom apartments currently priced at about $1,600 a month, cell phone bills hovering in the $75 to $150 range, and PG&E. religiously raping us for half our salaries, it's amazing anyone can afford to live in this city, let alone enjoy its vast array of entertainment. But San Francisco has a secret. Read more »

Sci-fi made me do it

Is speculative fiction in the blood?
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annalee@techsploitation.com

TECHSPLOITATION Human beings are always bragging how cool we are because we plan for the future. That's probably why a team of neuroscientists recently did a study on the anatomy of future thinking. Turns out that pondering an upcoming event like, say, the release of Windows Vista, activates a very specific part of the brain.

At least, that's what researchers at the University of Washington in St. Louis observed when they stuck people in an MRI machine and asked them to think about their next birthdays. Read more »

Off the record

Billion-dollar software company Mercury Interactive wants to keep details of a backdating scandal under seal
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gwschulz@sfbg.com

Among the mansions and box stores popuutf8g Silicon Valley are several major tech firms at the heart of a stock option backdating scandal that has metastasized through corporate America over the last two years.

The hall of shame includes Juniper Networks, McAfee, Nvidia, Brocade Communications Systems, and most notably for this story, a Mountain View–based firm called Mercury Interactive, which came under scrutiny in late 2004, making it one of the earliest companies identified for allegedly tampering with the lucrative stock options given Read more »

Taking on term limits

Out-the-door politics?
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EDITORIAL It's time to take a look at what legislative term limits are doing to San Francisco. Assemblymember Mark Leno, who is really just hitting his stride as one of the most effective members of the state legislature, is in his last term in office. Supervisors Chris Daly and Aaron Peskin, who are two of the most effective members of the Board of Supervisors, are in their final terms. Supervisor Tom Ammiano, who is the institutional memory of the left in city hall, will be gone in another two years.

In fact, Ammiano is a good case study for what's wrong with term limits. Read more »

Editor's Notes

Are the Dems ducking the "T" word?
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tredmond@sfbg.com

The biggest challenge facing Democrats in Congress this year is probably also the most boring. They're going to have to deal with taxes.

I'm not the only one obsessed with this. Really, I'm not. Edmund L. Andrews got into it in the New York Times on Jan. Read more »

Some questions for the mayor

A few things we'd like to ask ...
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EDITORIAL Gavin Newsom doesn't want to take direct questions from the supervisors. He rarely gets asked tough questions from the press and almost never from the public. Instead, as Steven T. Jones and Sarah Phelan report ("Mayor Chicken," page 13), all of his appearances are scripted, and he does a mighty job of ducking the hard questions.

But if he is indeed going to be holding a series of town hall meetings over the next few months, there's a chance for the voters to pin him down. Read more »

Mayor Chicken

Gavin Newsom is terrified to face real political debate. That's bad for the entire city
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news@sfbg.com

The format is always the same: Mayor Gavin Newsom shows up at a carefully scouted location somewhere in the city with his perfect tie and perfect hair. He brings a cadre of department heads in tow, sending the clear message that he can deliver government services to the public. He takes a few questions from the audience, but the format allows him to deflect anything tough, to delegate any problems to department heads, and to offer a thoughtful "we'll look into that" when the need arises.Read more »

A reporter stands up to the army

Sarah Olson fights a subpoena to tesify against an antiwar soldier -- and faces felony charges
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sarah@sfbg.com

Oakland freelance writer and radio journalist Sarah Olson has a tall, willowy frame; long silky hair; and a clearly articulated understanding of the reasons she believes that testifying against a source, First Lt. Read more »

Surging casualties

Bruce Blog: the surging casualties of "augmentation" -- and an ongoing count of the costs
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@@http://www.sfbg.com/blogs/bruce/@@

Emily Postfeminist

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andrea@altsexcolumn.com

Dear Andrea:

Recently, my boyfriend and I were at a strip club and bought a lap dance. My experience has been that, as a girl, the hands-off rule generally doesn't apply to me. However, out of respect for the girl, I don't touch until she invites me to. This one invited me to touch her. Caught up in the moment, my boyfriend asked, "Can she touch your pussy?" I was a bit shocked because I assumed that was off-limits, but she said, "She can, but you can't." So I started touching her on the outside of her G-string. Read more »