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News and Politics | San Francisco Bay Guardian

Revisionist future

Politics are holding back San Francisco's best shot at reducing carbon emissions

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news@sfbg.com

Acidified oceans. Dirty air. Superstorms. Food shortages. Mass migration. War. The International Panel on Climate Change last week released the final installment of its latest authoritative report on the catastrophic effects of global climate change.

In no uncertain terms, the report states, it is urgent that steps be taken to mitigate the worst impacts. The world's cities are the most at risk — yet hold the greatest potential for turning the tide, IPCC scientists noted. Making cities greener is one of the most effective ways to minimize climate change.Read more »

SFBG Wrap, April 9-16

Shrimp Boy is innocent (say his attorneys), Airbnb comes clean, and Ellis Act reform advances

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Who is Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow? In the 137-page federal complaint detailing charges that led to the high-profile arrest of Sen. Leland Yee, Chow, and 24 others two weeks ago (see "Crime and politics," April 1), Chow is described as the powerful "Dragonhead" of an ancient Chinese organized crime syndicate, "overseeing a vast criminal enterprise involved in drugs, guns, prostitution, protection rackets, moving stolen booze and cigarettes, and money laundering," as we reported at the time.Read more »

Covered San Francisco unveiled

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At the tail end of a long Board of Supervisors meeting last week, Sup. David Campos introduced legislation to create Covered San Francisco, a city healthcare option designed to remedy a coverage gap that will be created under the Affordable Care Act.Read more »

Brains, robots, and their evolution

What can we learn from technology, and what can it learn from us?

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rebecca@sfbg.com

The Bay Area is fully engaged with the technology industry, triggering political flare-ups over Google Glass, tech buses, and larger debates over how the tech industry is morphing the Bay Area's social and economic landscape. Meanwhile, university researchers are busily putting technology to use in service of their studies, or carefully examining how technology is shaping people's lives.Read more »

Privatization of public housing

Many residents feel they're moving from the frying pan of Housing Authority control into the fire of developer and nonprofit management

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news@sfbg.com

Like so many San Franciscans, Sabrina Carter is getting evicted.

The mother of three says that if she loses her home in the Western Addition, she'll have nowhere to go. It's been a tough, four-year battle against her landlord — a St. Louis-based development company called McCormack Baron — and its law firm, Bornstein & Bornstein. That's the same law firm that gained notoriety for holding an "eviction boot camp" last November to teach landlords how to do Ellis Act evictions and sweep tenants out of rent-controlled housing.Read more »

A tale of two Google buses

The controversial tech shuttles are powerful symbols — or they're not — that are also causing real problems and benefits on the roads

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joe@sfbg.com

At the San Francisco Board of Supervisors on April 1, an environmental appeal hearing on the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency's commuter shuttle pilot program elevated the so-called Google Bus into a powerful symbol with two narratives — of gentrification and displacement, or the misguided belief that tech workers are to blame for those trends in San Francisco.Read more »

Crime and politics

How an FBI probe of organized crime in Chinatown took down a senator and well-connected political consultant

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steve@sfbg.com

San Franciscans awoke March 26 to the surprising news that state Sen. Leland Yee (D-SF) had been arrested on federal corruption charges as part of early morning police raids targeting an organized crime syndicate based in Chinatown, along with reputed gangster Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow and two dozen others.Read more »

Bloodshed in Bernal Heights

The police shooting of Alejandro Nieto leaves a community in shock

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rebecca@sfbg.com

On Friday morning, March 21, the day that Alejandro Nieto was shot and killed by San Francisco Police Department officers, he went to the gym with his friend Byron Pedroza. It was something they did often, Pedroza said; the two of them had signed up for gym memberships together. "He'd be like, 'B, get up. Let's go work out.'"Read more »

Massage therapists hope for a happy ending

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The California Massage Therapy Council, a statewide body that licenses massage practitioners, may expire at the end of this year unless extended by the California Legislature. Some anti-prostitution crusaders say reverting to local control will make it easier to shut down covert brothels, but the practitioners fear a return to the bad old days, when stigmas and stereotypes overcomplicated their lives.Read more »

Cap and frown

SFUSD considers allowing hats in schools, ending a policy discouraging cultural indicators

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joe@sfbg.com

Just in time for baseball season, Giants hats may be allowed back into San Francisco public schools. A new Board of Education resolution may change the school district dress code to allow hats to be worn indoors in classrooms, a resolution that is also sparking conversations about cultural sensitivity.Read more »