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smoke.jpg (74842 bytes)Bad power. The postcard mysteriously materialized in the Call’s mailbox on Cortland, its smokestacks emblazoned with the phrase “wish you were here.” Glossy and colorful, it was addressed to our mayor and left a space for my signature and address. The message read:

I am concerned about pollution and health impacts from the fossil fuel power plants in Southeast San Francisco. Children and adults in this area suffer extremely high rates of pollution-related illnesses, including asthma and cancer.


· Immediately shutdown PG&E’s Hunters Point power plant
· No expansion of Mirant’s Potrero power plant
· Support clean, renewable energy & environmental justice

Supervisor Mark Leno would have groaned in despair if he had seen it — the card bore no indication of its sponsor, other than a tiny “UndergroundAds.com” in one corner.

A little sleuthing led to Peter Walbridge, co-creative director of Underground Advertising, who acknowledged that the card was indeed the handiwork of his politically minded company, a donation to a good cause directed by several local groups including Communities for a Better Environment (mthomas@cbecal.org).

These are reputable groups. Why don’t their names appear? It’s an all-purpose card, Walbridge explained, designed to be distributed in a variety of affected neighborhoods where different organizations were active. (Mark Leno is still groaning.)

So far, the cards have turned up in strategic locations on Potrero Hill and Bernal Heights, and in Bayview-Hunters Point. Although the Call’s was intended for Willie Brown, it might also have targeted one of several state-level officials, hoping that the message might hit home somewhere.

Maybe it’s time to revive that old song — “They’re not painting the skies so blue this year; wish you were here.”

Good power. Neil Eisenberg, candidate for city attorney (www.eisenbergforcityattorney.org) and chair of the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCo) in charge of setting up a Municipal Utilities District, is throwing a wingding on Tuesday, October 9. Or at least his backers are (415 693-9861). The occasion is a benefit for the MUD campaign (Measure I on the November ballot); the place is Pier 23; the time is 5:30-8:30. They provide music (Beats Workin’) and lots of speakers; you provide your presence and a few bucks to help the campaign along.

Good competition. Another candidate for city attorney, Steve Williams (www.williamsforcityattorney.com), offers no-host drinks and hors d’oeuvres on Wednesday, October 10, to raise money and enthusiasm for his campaign. Supervisors Jake McGoldrick, Aaron Peskin, and Leland Yee play host; the place is the Shanghai 1930 Restaurant (133 Steuart); the time is 5:30-8:00; the suggested donation is $25.

Who ever suggested that off-year elections were dull? Stay tuned for more.