by h. brown
Mayor co-opts more hippie programs
I watch most things through a kind of haze. The
color & thickness of the haze depends upon what I’ve ingested
that day. As I recall, it was through a kind of “purple” haze
that I watched Willie Brown give his philosophy of how to destroy
his oppositions’ best projects:
“Bring your ideas to me. If you bring me a
good idea, by the time you leave, it will be … OUR idea.”
Yeah, & you won’t recognize your idea
anymore. As a matter of fact, it is likely that the goals engendered
by your idea will have had their poles reversed. What began as a
great idea for the good of the people will have become a great idea
for confusing, dividing, and ultimately screwing the people. Take 3
ideas that Willie and his Masters ran across the stage this week.
1. Esprit Park — who could possibly be against
adding another jewel of a park to the public domain? One member
after another of the Board’s Public Health & Environment
Committee praised a transfer of ownership of this little emerald
island from Esprit de Corp to the city. They had me nodding &
feeling warm & fuzzy about something we could all finally agree
upon until that old “fly-in-the-ointment” Calvin Welch closed
out the public comment part of the scam. Welch burst the bubble. The
deal would actually cost the Jobs-Housing Linkage Program which
funds affordable housing … $7.106 million smackers. Leveraged,
noted Welch, this money could fund over 20 million dollars in
affordable housing. The deal also rips off poor kids by taking a
half million bucks from the Child Care Fee. What a deal for Willie
and his gentrification effort. You take money away from poor people
to pay for gardens in which only the rich will stroll.
2. Having trouble evicting your low-paying
tenants? Under a new program presented by (but apparently totally
unintelligible to) Supervisor Leland Yee, you can get cash from the
city to throw the poor buggers out. City suing you because you let
your tenants live in the midst of rats & mildew & sewage?
The city will give you the cash to hire Robert McCarthy (he’d
probably take these cases pro-bono) or Alice Barclay to defend you.
You’d be surprised at what a fight such a great
little program caused. A hundred grand. That’s one … fity-thousandth
of the budget. They fought like it was for a billion dollars, and
they were right to do so. It was yet another Willie Brown co-opt. If
it’s cool to defend tenants being thrown into the streets with
city money, reasoned Willie, it must be cool to fund the people
tossing them out.
Does this seem a little strange? Chris Daly caught
on right away. “How do you define ‘low-income’ owners?”
asked Daly, wanting to know if their rental income figured into it.
The city attorney’s rep shrugged. For once, he
didn’t know. Daly pushed Yee. Yee folded: “Jenine New of the
Apartment House Association is not here,” he said, looking wildly
around the audience for the lobbyist who obviously wrote the
The political junkies, drunks, & groupies who
populate my front room hooted. “Willie’s detectives got more
than sun tan lotion on this boy!” shouted one. “Naw. … He
wants Kevin Shelley’s Assembly seat,” said another.
I mused. The mayor had co-opted another program.
Challenged it with its mirror-opposite to confuse the issue.
3. Go to sanfranciscosentinel.com for the earliest
breaking news on the San Francisco political scene. Come to the San
Francisco Call for the most insightful examination of same.
So, Willie’s top political consultants
(Mosher/Barnes/Greed) decided to rip off Patrick Murphy’s
Sentinel. Mosher announced via The Independent that he and a few
close buddies — Committee on Jobs, the San Francisco Small
Business Network, the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, and a
bunch more of Willie’s Masters — had thrown in a grand or so
apiece & taken on the likes of Arthur Bruzzone, Will Durst, and
Murphy columnist Alex Clemens to co-opt Patrick Murphy’s efforts.
Ignoring Murphy, The Independent called the mayor’s new organ the
“first site of its kind.”
Murphy makes less than $800 a month and runs his
site on a shoestring. The new “Willie Web” will have thousands
and will doubtlessly give you the same sort of developer-slanted
garbage the mayor so loves.
Recall Willie Brown.
The return of the Thing
Rising from the Texas swamps like a poorly
weighted body, former San Francisco Unified boss Wally Rojas slimed
into City Hall this week. This guy is soooooo Brooklyn! He used
every trick of the Severely Emotionally Disturbed. He turned up the
volume. He denied responsibility. He threw in a massive blame-shift.
He blustered and ignored all time limits and parliamentary
procedure. He had not lost his edge.
The only Supes not impressed were Chris Daly and
Aaron Peskin. Daly’s response to the Rojas infestation was quick.
Calling Deputy City Attorney Ted Lakey forward, Daly asked if they
could swear Rojas in and bust him for perjury if he lied to them.
(Daly’s not too happy about Rojas diverting a few million dollars
supposed to build a new Bessie Carmichael School in his district to
It’s hard to get a parliamentarian like Lakey to
smile … or to stump em. Daly’s question did both. “I did spend
some time as a prosecutor long ago,” offered Lakey, to some
chuckles from the audience.
Rojas didn’t have to swear to God, it turned
out. We had to be content with watching him swear at the people of
the city and county of San Francisco and their elected reps.
Waddaguy. Get outta here, Wally. … Really, Wally … get … out
… of … here.
Gavin Newsom continues his pretense-at-superiority
routine. He seldom speaks unless really big money is on the line for
his yacht club buddies. He prefaced one comment sarcastically to the
Board: “I’ll be brief, Mr. President, in anticipation of your
admonition.” He rushes out of the chambers as quickly as possible
and pretty much plays by himself in the corner while he’s there.
He has visually aged a good deal in the few short months he’s had
to sit between Leland Yee and Tony Hall (but, hey … who wouldn’t?).
And worst? It’s only a rumor, mind you, but I
understand one of the big lingerie companies has canceled plans to
feature Gavin in a coming catalogue. Apparently, they want a real
embodiment of brains and looks and macho power. They’re going to
go with Supervisor Matt Gonzalez in a leopard skin thong swinging
across a river on a vine with a large knife in his teeth And
carrying a certain scantily clad assistant district attorney in his
free arm. Read em & weep, Gav.
I ain’t listening at: firstname.lastname@example.org