The practice of politics

It isn't just about issues and ideology; it's about the way we fight

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Supporters of Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi sometimes cross an important line during his Oct. 9 removal proceedings.
PHOTO BY LUKE THOMAS

steve@sfbg.com

ESSAY San Francisco's progressive movement needs restoration and renewal. Our focus on immediate fights and indignities has blurred our perspective on the larger, longer struggle for a more just, sustainable, and inclusive society. It's time to regain that vision by taking a new path and practicing a different kind of politics.

Back-to-back local scandals involving progressive male politicians treating women badly have spawned waves of ugly reactions and recriminations on all sides. Those frustrations have bubbled up against an overwhelming tidal wave of money from wealthy individuals and corporations used to deceive and divide the voting public on the local and national levels.

Real concerns about domestic violence have been reduced to an election-year weapon, cheapening an important issue. Stubborn injustices like lack of gender equity in pay and promotions and access to contraception have been countered with mythical "binders full of women," a new take on the old dodge of personal responsibility. Unacceptable groping or grabbing is alternatively denied, dismissed, or blamed on the women. Little has changed except the modern polish on our dated pronouncements.

The turbulence of this political year has tested our tolerance and we've lost our balance, if not our minds from time to time. But we can learn from our mistakes. San Franciscans should be leading the way forward, not just with our gadgets and technological innovations, but with the example we set in how we practice our politics.

Perhaps I'm not the best one to call out my comrades and propose our next steps. I'm a single, straight man, and I've fought as fiercely as anyone on behalf of the Guardian's progressive values and worldview, sometimes resorting to the same nastiness that we've seen bubbling over this year.

But as I've covered this year's high-profile political scandals involving Ross Mirkarimi and Julian Davis for the Guardian — and read the vitriolic comments reacting to my stories and expressed in public forums — it has caused me to rethink my own approach and that of the progressive movement. So I want to offer my insights, make amends, and contribute to the dialogue that our community desperately needs to have.

***

Let me start by saying that I understand why people perceive political conspiracies against Mirkarimi, Davis, and other progressive politicians in San Francisco. Wealthy interests really do have a disproportionate influence over the decisions that are shaping this city's future, to the detriment of the working and creative classes.

A small group of powerful people installed Ed Lee as mayor using calculated deceptions, and he has largely been carrying out their agenda ever since, practicing dirty politics that have fractured and debilitated the progressive movement. In this election cycle, we saw the willingness of Lee's deep-pocketed benefactors, such as right-wing billionaire Ron Conway, to shatter previous spending records to achieve their unapologetically stated goal of destroying San Francisco's progressive movement.

But if we want to replace economic values with human values — emphasizing people's needs over property and profits, which is the heart of progressivism — we can't forget our humanity in that struggle. Choosing conflict and the politics of division plays into the hands of those who seek to divide and conquer us. We need to embody the change we want to see and build new systems to replace our ailing political and economic models.

When Mayor Lee decided in March to suspend Sheriff Mirkarimi without pay and without any investigation — and by the way, showing no interest in hearing from the alleged victim, Eliana Lopez — progressives had good reason to be outraged. Domestic violence advocates and the Chronicle's editorial writers may not see it this way, but I understand why it seemed politically motivated.

Comments

Here's how it goes, Steven. Once the progressive star began to fall shortly after Daly's reelection in 2006, the movement quickly began to lose critical mass and gravitational attraction. This happened because downtown took steps to make that happen and because the professional progressives took no steps to stop it or to articulate their own renewed positive vision. Once that gravitational field dwindled to the point of pathetic, new folks stopped getting involved in progressive politics and that simply exacerbated the problem until we see what we've got now.

How many progressive policy initiatives have been successful since foot patrols? We can count that on one, one hand.

At that point towards the end of the decade, Christina and I both jumped off of the progressive train within six months of one another in anticipation that this puppy was going to go over the cliff at speed as it did. Christina jumped onto another train heading in a different direction while I lingered by the siding. I don't need to prostrate myself in obsequiousness as I don't have to rely on the good graces of politicos for my income.

Christina does not have that option. And now that she has voted her conscience and gotten fucked by it, and she has no professional skillset to fall back on, she has put her well being on the line in a way that nobody at the SFBG nor in the professional progressive class would ever dream of--you all are way too domesticated and timid to risk it all at very high stakes on principle.

Progressives set the table for their disintegration and subsequent fleeing from those of us adverse to going off of the cliff. And Christina was correct in wanting to repeal IRV, a move which sent your panties into a serious wad for no other reason than commutative cooties.

My read was that Christina in the good graces of the mayor could have accomplished at least as much in moving the progressive agenda as someone like Julian who would be ostensibly "more progressive" but would be frozen out by power, probably more. For every one win Julian could squeeze, Christina could probably get five.

Steven, I'd abandoned personal political ambition almost a decade ago, it is not for me as our allies only have knives to our backs and I don't have the organizing skills to make up the difference. There are no slights to my ambitions because they're not there. What I am disgusted with is the numbness with which the professional progressives are accepting their fate as being relegated to the political dustbin of history. And I am disgusted with the continual painting of lipstick on the pig of failure.

After Ross and then Christina put me on the MTA CAC, I was able to put together a unanimous vote from members appointed by all supervisors and the mayor, opposing the $13m grab from the MTA to the SFPD which the MTA Board subsequently ignored. While I'll leave no stone unturned in calling out progressive spies in labor and the nonprofit who are sandbagging our movement, I'm quite capable of identifying common ground across the political spectrum and exploiting it. This is why I am feared.

People claim to be concerned about a wide array of issues, housing, transportation, poverty, race, gender, class, queer, etc. It turns out that the ones who whine the loudest and make the most extreme demands and excoriate anyone who differs from them are the least effective in moving their agenda. On the back of the envelope, I'd wager that the more money poured into an area of advocacy, the less effective it is and the worse off the community allegedly advocated for becomes. I am just grateful that we've been able to work our way to a position that we're going to be okay irrespective of progressive collapse. My neighbors and many friends are not so fortunate.

Last year we saw the same losers in local progressive politics grafting their failed campaigns onto the new green shoots of Occupy SF. That worked out splendidly, didn't it, the glorious storming of the CMPC campus by the proletarians on J28 really turned the tide, huh, those inspiring HNJ occupations really began to make a difference in housing. That's yer political RoundUp for ya.

Steven, this is not about an individual, it is about a big picture structural analysis of a failing political movement. Politics is about much more than relationships. For you it is about your friends and their feelings. Hurting the feelings of a few self important promoters does not count for shit to me compared to the real world consequences of these play actors' failure to move an agenda. Anyone who would put their or their friends' feelings before the substance of policy is yanking our chains.

I am into zen politics, Steven. Not all political goals are at the end of a straight line as the interconnectedness of all things provides ways to do political bank shots where sinking an apparently unrelated ball scores more points than you'd think and sets the stage for future wins, the political terrain is nowhere near flat or continuous. That zen politics encompasses both good and evil because human nature is comprised of both and both carry useful energies.

So many are so domesticated into servility before power that they fear any expression of non-positive energy that might offend the patron or the priest. And in so doing are disarming themselves from half of the arsenal required to contest power.

And when I say zen politics, I don't mean giving backhanded endorsements to your "allies" that end up doing more damage than good. How the fuck, yes, I typed FUCK (oooh, I am so uncivil and I think that I hurt someone's feelings, can't you just hear the clutching of pearls and gasps right now through your screen) can the SFBG come out calling for more civility in politics (who's agenda is that?) when each and every endorsement issue you put out attacks the people you claim to support?

The only thing that matters is *effectiveness*, a word which progressives can no longer spell and would have removed from the dictionary if they could to permanently absolve them of accountability. Progressivism is over, it has consumed itself. The next step is a broad coalition of San Franciscans to contest municipal corruption and the rule of the 1% billionaires.

What you've got here Steven is a dead parrot, and you did more to kill it than I because you've got the louder bullhorn that reaches more people.

Now go off to some parklet party with Alix and look down on the little people on the outside. Anyway, until there is accountability and heads roll, we're going to continue to see progressiveness used as a narrow movement to keep people getting paid.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 8:05 am

Remember, London Breed got elected using nothing but perfect table manners, always so well spoken with impeccable diction.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 8:40 am

London Breed got elected because the "progressives" were splintered, and people in general don't realize the importance of coalition building in times of elections *especially* in light of RCV---neither the candidates nor the voters. In my view. RCV behooves us all to look at—and act in accordance with—the larger view (both politically and personally when it comes to human foibles). Which we are not trained to do. Instead, we're a) conditioned to think in terms of I, me, mine: one candidate. Maybe two. My candidacy—not yours. It takes more work, on more than one level, to do it differently. And b) that goes for the personal too as far as not giving in to fear or demonization. We're all guilty of that at one time or another it seems...

I hope there's been a lesson learned because of D5. I think the "movement" is bigger than one defeat, but I know you, marcos, see things as a succession of defeats. I just am looking at today—not the last 10 years—and working from what we have on the table today. Otherwise you just have all that baggage, in the form of vitriol and hard feelings, weighing you down.

I'm with Steven here. Let's just learn from our mistakes and keep moving...smarter and with heart.

And PS—I'll be watching London Breed. In my view, anyone who cusses like that during an interview in front of the cameras in a campaign for higher office is suspect. I dunno...i don't like it. People make mistakes all the time--but usually not in full frontal public view...makes me wonder what goes on in the privacy of *her* world...but, i could be wrong...

Posted by Daniele E. on Nov. 12, 2012 @ 8:27 pm

Steven says that we learn from what happened and practice politics less confrontationally, nicer and more pleasantly. Some would call that a return to civility. Arthur Evans lives!

My take is that there are structural impediments that have been imposed to increasingly limit progressive, neighborhood and anti-corporate political power and that unless we address those structural factors, we're pissing down the drain.

There are ethical constraints here where people who get paid to do the work put their continued payment--I, me, mine--ahead of the movement as a whole. Financial conflicts of interest should entail a wall of separation between what you get paid to do and what one gets to advocate for as relates to a coalition or movement.

D5 is a symptom of a decay that I've been describing for the past five years. Either we confront the truth as we see it and speak that truth or we're better off just gardening.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 12, 2012 @ 9:31 pm

I no like no strange metrics neither.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 17, 2012 @ 10:03 pm

Amen. Marc is the main reason for a huge exodus from the left, particularly of women. Is really rather sickening, how he is coddled and kept as an attack dog.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 12:54 am

Here's one woman who I organized the mostly women sane Greens to drive out of the SF Green Party after Gonzalez invited the Front Lines cadre in:

http://cybre.net/pub/lucrecia.swf

Posted by marcos on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 9:16 am

And what do you have against Lucretia Bermudez? Were the women you helped organize mostly white and privileged? Be honest.

Posted by Green gal on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 4:37 pm

I know, I've not bowed down low enough before the goddesses of oppression and thus have no standing to comment on anything progressive.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 6:10 pm

What do you think Marc has said and/or done to drive women away?

Posted by Erika McDonald on Nov. 12, 2012 @ 8:35 am

"But there's never any excuse for booing or making derogatory comments to domestic violence advocates who braved a hostile crowd to offer their opinions on the issue."

When people get paid to represent a position, they are no longer speaking by and for themselves, rather by and for the institution that pays them.

The exchange of money should not insulate anyone from accountability, but that is par for the course on both sides of the ideological divide.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 07, 2012 @ 11:49 am

I would even ADD that not only is it just and fair it is our duty to challenge the phony component the "so called" advocates of the DV movement for their fraudulent use of one of the most important social issues of our day. THOUGH it makes less sense as a strategy to "boo" them because it played into these scoundrels prearranged ploy to escape real scrutiny because they were despicably hiding behind the real victims of DV and were in fact using them to cover up that these phonies acted in service to the machine and were USING the DV movement not for the real issue itself but in the service of this political machine.

Posted by thatsthewayitis on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 2:11 pm

Agreed, it was poor form to boo, that is why I watched the proceedings from the comfort of my own home to avoid the spectacle.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 5:55 pm

Sorry to say it but this piece reads like a bunch of pablum to me and I found it embarrassing. Kumbaya is a catchy song but that's not the situation we find ourselves in right now here in SF. I think Movement's ideas, posted above, are a lot more focused and to the point.

Posted by Barry Eisenberg on Nov. 07, 2012 @ 11:51 am

All of us, including progressives, may also want to think about how they appear to others by their use of language, much of which can be tacky and sexist and, sadly, increasingly used by women, as well as men, including those in or working for someone in public office.

These expressions make users look hard, insensitive, uneducated and sometimes frightening. They are spoken to demonstrate the speaker's power, but they really just demean the sayer and shut down meaningful dialogue.

First among those is the ubiquitous, "fuck you" followed by WTF, dickhead, douche, douche bag, and so on.

Dial it back.

Posted by Guest observer on Nov. 07, 2012 @ 3:43 pm

It's heartfelt and probably even more so now that the election results are in. I for one think it's something of a milestone and hope it can be used to build bridges. But I have a feeling, reading the commentary here (especially from Eric Brooks, who's probably stewing over the lopsided vote against draining Hetch Hetchy) that it's going to take a lot more to get people to abandon the take-no-prisoners rhetoric of the past.

Posted by Troll II on Nov. 07, 2012 @ 6:01 pm

You used to be the nastiest troll going. But lately, you almost sound human.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 5:49 pm

This is an excellent critique of the current state of the Progressive movement, Steven. Thoughtful and entertaining as well. As far as attracting new converts, I only wonder if it is a little too late. At this point, the crowd that heckled the DV activists at Mirkarimi's removal proceedings ARE the Progressive party in the eyes of a lot of San Franciscans. Some might say that's unfair, but that's the perception that many San Franciscans have. And Progressives will never change that perception with insults and personal attacks. As far as restoring unity within the Party, the burying of various hatchets and a great big ideological group-hug would be a good start, but there's something else that needs to be addressed if Progressives expect to both grow as a political power, AND achieve meaningful and LASTING social change.

You need to muzzle your dogs. I've said this a bunch, and rarely has anyone paid attention. Well, I'm saying it again because I know that, now, you won't be able to ignore the problem. Just take a look at your own throats in the mirror. They've been shredded bloody by your very own pit bulls. Historically, Progressives have made much use of the hate-fueled, emotionally damaged berserkers within the movement's ranks, but look what happened when you tried to bring them to heel after having left the leash off for too long. You got a nasty bite and now you're gonna need stitches. I'm not saying you should hire a party planner for your own Night of the Long Knives or anything, but, jeez, implement a little discipline.

Posted by snoozers on Nov. 07, 2012 @ 7:39 pm

I know I will be called sexist for saying this, but woman are generally a little wiser when it comes to human relations. Yes, I know, women can sell out just like men. But you don't get all the male posturing and acting out behaviors (don't quote London to me...she's no prog).

Look, I would never admit this while Arthur Evans was alive, but the good old boys club in Proglandia was alive and well. And it did a bang-up job of keeping women relegated to the sidelines. So, if you're truly serious about the process of self-examination or finding ways to reinvigorate "the movement", it's time to get serious about promoting more women and POC to positions of power. Just my two cents, guys. Don't shoot.

Posted by Ana on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 6:06 pm

And yes, it is sexist to suggest that women are generally wiser. Vote for the best candidate, man or woman.

There is no "boys club" that kept women sidelined. Progressives put forth many female candidates, and gave them as much institutional support as they did to male candidates. Unfortunately, as luck would have it, most of them didn't win, though some did.

The bottom line is that issues matter more than personalities and identity politics. Incidentally, I supported Migden over Leno, even though Leno is a far nicer guy and is clearly wiser about "human relations" than Migden. But I could care less about who's wiser about human relations. Migden generally came down on the side of progressives, and Leno generally came down on the side of moderates, so I backed Migden.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 11:48 pm

"I know I will be called sexist for saying this, but woman are generally a little wiser when it comes to human relations... if you're truly serious about the process of self-examination or finding ways to reinvigorate "the movement", it's time to get serious about promoting more women and POC to positions of power.

I agree completely. In fact, I partially based my ballot choices this year on ethnicity and gender. I feel there are not enough women or African Americans in local government. I'm sure a lot of people will think this is shallow and counterproductive, but I don't care.

Posted by Snoozers on Nov. 12, 2012 @ 5:45 am

So, Steve –

What are your old friend and ex-girlfriend “DCCC member Alix Rostenthal” sharing a laugh about in Tim Daw's photo? “[T]he money-driven nature of the agenda that Lee and his billionaire backer Ron Conway have for San Francisco”? The fact that Winnicker got to keep his job, because the whole thing was theater? Or the fact that, for both of them, it’s all about their insider-hood – the same insider-hood Olague has always cherished above all else?

Ah, well – I suppose there’s a chuckle or two to be had over that race.

Posted by Judy on Nov. 07, 2012 @ 9:19 pm

I don't like or trust Tony Winnicker, but I do have some comments from talking to him that night that I intend to use in my next story. Tony embodies much of the nasty, money-driven, take-no-prisoners politics that progressives need to counter, for the sake of this city. As for Alix, she has great political skills and gets along with everyone, but I can guarantee you that she's not in cahoots with Tony. He's far too mean-spirited for her tastes.

Posted by steven on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 12:13 pm

is a euphimism for "it's all about insiderhood"

Posted by Judy on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 1:21 pm

Steven, Alix Rosenthal, to quote Elaine Santore, is the perfect example of a progocialite, one whose practice is to socialize with other progressive self promoters and pretend that they're playing politics.

This is the problem that progressives face, a professional class that is disconnected from the communities that are in need of progressive solutions to problems because they're too busy congratulating one another on how progressive they are in their new political gig.

Tell me, Steve, what was the last successful progressive policy campaign that Alix worked on that attracted opposition from corporate power?

Posted by marcos on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 5:53 pm

Alix worked on Mar's D1 campaign and Mirkarimi's race for Sheriff.

Posted by steven on Nov. 09, 2012 @ 11:49 am

Yes, working on campaigns is good, but lots of people have worked on lots of campaigns. The whole point of electing people to office is to move a policy agenda and we know that electeds alone can't do that by themselves, they need organization in and cover by communities.

What policy agenda, progressive policy agenda, did Alix move that encountered resistance from downtown and the Mayor during the time that Alix has become active and the progressive movement has been effectively stopped in its tracks?

That is the whole point of having these wonderful political skills you write of, no, to change public policy?

Posted by marcos on Nov. 11, 2012 @ 9:25 am

The only way for popular politics to counter corporate rule is for San Franciscans to out organize the corporate forces that out spend us, not only during election season, but between elections.

Anyone who gets paid on the progressive side and inserts themselves between San Franciscans and corporate power, forestalling the kind of broad based organizing required to balance the equation either through institutional cooptation or through prejudicial (race, income level, queerness, gender, transportation mode, neighborhood) crimping of the coalition smaller and smaller is as much of a problem to San Franciscans as corporate power.

It is not a problem that progressives offend and hurt the feelings of paid nonprofit or labor advocates or those who commute from Oakland to play politics in SF. If progressive advocates are going to complain about and thus avoid being held accountable via progressively increasing demands for accountability, then that is more of a problem than calling them out on their shit.

It is a problem that the professional progressives and commuters from Oakland slice and dice the SF electorate to meet their narrow economic demands and alienates anyone who does not meet their particular standards in the process.

Not only does this approach not meet the needs of the communities spoken for by the advocates, it alienates those communities from the rest of the city. The only ones who win in this scenario are the paid advocates.

Either we play this game for keeps, and if we're going to play for keeps it has to all be about a super majority of San Francisco voters, not liberal progressive guilt trips about "the most vulnerable." "The most vulnerable" are fewer and fewer in number and most folks don't like self conceiving as weak and powerless in order to please the trust fund cabal's noblesse oblige fixation on paternalistic saviorhood.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 7:20 am

I really hope you say the same fucking thing 5 more times today!
so enlightening!

Posted by guest on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 9:23 am

Either we learn or adapt or we perish and the inclination is to shoot the messenger rather than adapt.

I'm fixin' to laugh my ass off as Ed Lee consolidates his position by slowly asphyxiating the nonprofiteers by a game of musical chairs now that they're no longer needed.

You all fucked it up big time and it is now time for you all to be held accountable.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 9:34 am

How are you going to actively work on this idea? Are you organizing meetings somewhere? Who are the new leaders?

Posted by lost on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 9:43 am

Confidential to lost: Don't ask who the "new leaders" are, for crying out loud -- get out there and work on whatever issues are most important to you. Find people who've been fighting the good fight (forgive the cliche) for years and years without grabbing the spotlight for themselves. (The name Ted Gulliksen leaps immediately to mind, but there are many others.) Find organizations doing essential work that need new blood.

People promoting themselves as "leaders" are a dime a dozen in this town, and they don't accomplish squat worth of good relative to many visionary, courageous, creative and often exhausted people whose pictures never appear in the Bay Guardian.

Steven's call for "an agenda" reflects appalling ignorance of that fact. Does he think there ought to be another San Francisco People's Organization, so that all the self-promoters can get themselves in front of microphones and cameras and then not do squat - again?

Posted by Judy on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 1:32 pm

SFPO, snort!

The problem with just picking up and working on an issue is that anything that has any sort of economic impact on or limits the ability of the corrupt interests to take their cut, that is addressing policy failure consequences of systemic corruption is always preempted by community "leaders" who'll cut a deal to keep their good thing going.

I can't recount how many times I'd built consensus across the political spectrum to support a progressive position articulated in common sense terms only to be cut off by labor or the nonprofits and sold out for the narrowest of compromises.

We need some sort of City Council, a shadow ethical government that looks like what we'd want a progressive government to look like where folks work on their favorite issues and there is a comprehensive strategy worked through by San Franciscans who don't have an economic dog in the game to get the most gains for the most San Franciscans out of the deals.

The Big Game of SF politics is keep away from the progressives, the Little Game of SF politics is labor and the nonprofits playing keep away from San Franciscans. It is that little game which has to end.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 2:17 pm

The problem is that it would be hard to get consensus on what that would even look like. Factions would arise, and one would be right back where one started.

By the way, is there any San Franciscan who doesn't have an economic dog in the game?

Posted by Hortencia on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 2:33 pm

We all have general economic dogs in the fight but we don't have particular direct-from-general fund dollar flows to protect.

Yes there would be factions, but there would be an unowned space for the factions to work their shit out. Sure beats the dysfunctional midday nonprofit coffee klatches.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 5:57 pm

Gullicksen doesn't grab the spotlight?

Posted by Guest on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 2:25 pm

Ted has done okay to hold the line on rent control, but over the past ten years, the SFTU, like most all progressive, have been unable to push a proactive agenda. The SFTU was unable to even get enough sigs to put Park Merced on the referendum ballot.

If you want to see how decrepit the progressive coalition has become, take some time to attend an SFTU meeting. You can see the wonderful Mara Math drive up from San Mateo to visit SF with her special form of vile bile.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 09, 2012 @ 10:52 am

Does no one realize that Marc is being paid on the down low to destroy the progressives and green party in San Francisco? Seriously?

Posted by Guest on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 12:58 am

Do the math. When I was active in SF politics during the previous decade, progressives racked up win after win. As I saw the cooptation take hold around 2008 or so, starting in 2006 actually, and the professional progressives began to sandbag the movement to keep their cash flowing, I began to pull back in disgust from being active and since then progressive fortunes have foundered to the point of near extinction.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 7:34 am

...delusions of grandeur.

Posted by Hortencia on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 9:14 am

Shit did not hit the fan electorally on my watch.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 10, 2012 @ 9:39 am

"I began to pull back in disgust"...

That's what Buddhists call "aversion". Aversion is one of those things that leads to suffering....
Maybe a better tack would be to acknowledge whatever's taking place, but staying in and working with it. Just a suggestion, Marcos.

Posted by Daniele E. on Nov. 12, 2012 @ 6:22 pm

Pulling back in disgust does not mean that I've stopped dispatching the occasional lightning bolt or abandoned my values.

I'm just not wanting to be throwing my volunteer work where it does less and less good.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 12, 2012 @ 7:13 pm

The essayist mentions:
“But there's never any excuse for booing or making derogatory comments to domestic violence advocates who braved “ BRAVED why didn’t you mention Eliana as having BRAVED her long trial and WHERE were the “advocates” protecting her wasn’t SHE the one they are supposed to PROTECT ? or what
The essayist mentions
he does "understand "wealthy interests have “ disproportionate influence” over the decisions that are shaping this city..." Well I actually think there is evidence that the city is controlled by a criminal enterprise that has kidnapped not only the city apparatus but the elective offices by any means necessary FAR different than "disproportionate influence" (like what) Like the ballot boxes in the bay when Willie appointed Tammy Haywood elections chief and a PG&E was fighting a measure for clean energy. the widespread ballot fraud of Ed Lee and the SF Neighborhood Alliance money laundering election fraud for Ed Lee Go Lorrie and Archway/Veritas these being but a few exemplifying the racketeering of a political machine "NO NO this isnt "disproportionate influence"

Posted by thatsthewayitis on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 10:28 am

And the criminal enterprise has the nonprofits and unions, which claim to represent all unrich San Franciscans, by the gonads and constrains their options.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 10:38 am

...I'm sick of your run-on writing style.

Posted by Hortencia on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 10:43 am

When the substance of the discourse disturbs you, you can always attack the form.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 11:04 am

I've disputed this messy, bordering-on-subliterate writer's substance often enough when it's been possible to discern what he's getting at.

Posted by Hortencia on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 11:20 am

The point the poster made is clear, this city is run by a criminally corrupt conspiracy to defraud San Franciscans of honest government.

Posted by marcos on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 12:00 pm

I have consistently supported Eliana in my coverage of the Mirkarimi saga, moreso than any journalist in town (here's one of many examples: http://www.sfbg.com/politics/2012/07/20/eliana-lopez-victim-whom)
And even in this essay, I renewed my call for the DV community to talk to Eliana. But if we continue stooping to the level of our adversaries, we won't accomplish our goals. It's time to dig deep and lead by example.

Posted by steven on Nov. 08, 2012 @ 12:19 pm