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SF General — a top trauma center, important safety net, and major city commitment to public health — moves into an uncertain transition period

This Week's Paper

coverLife and death at SF General as everyone's hospital moves into an uncertain period, BART's new policy of rousing vagrants, MEX I AM's latin sounds hit Yerba Bunea Center, and Wolrd War I Films blow up the screen at PFA. Articles Online | Digital Edition

From the Blogs

12 tweets McLovin' and McHatin' the East Bay's #FastFoodStrike

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Workers from about 30 fast food restaurants in the East Bay rallied for higher pay yesterday, demanding $15 an hour, nearly twice as much as California's $8 an hour minimum wage. For reference, Burger King Chief Executive Officer Bernardo Hees makes $4,015,619 with salary and investments, Chief Executive Officer of Yum! Restaurants David C. Novak (KFC Corporation/Pizza Hut are a part of Yum!) makes $14,168,355, and Chief Executive Officer of McDonald's Corp Donald Thompson makes $13,751,919 with his salaries and investments, according to figures from Forbes and BusinessWeek.Read more »

Fall films to look forward too ... and new movies to see tonight!

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Click this way for my Fall Film Preview, presented as part of this weeks Fall Arts spectacular. With bonus photo of Bradley Cooper's Brady perm!

Read on for this week's openings, including one of the best indie films of the year, the latest from Wong Kar-Wai, and, uh...the One Direction movie.

Read more »

Live Review: My Bloody Valentine’s SF show feels like something beamed in from another decade

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Swirling guitars… cooing vocals… that all-engulfing wall of noise. It's difficult to describe My Bloody Valentine's sound without veering into borderline erotica, and understandably so; in the guitar rock landscape, few bands make music that's so tactile and exhilarating.

For many of its devoted fans, the band's seminal 1991 LP, Loveless, is inextricably tethered to private moments of introspection and sexuality. Its delicate balance between loud and quiet, menace and seduction, resulted in a sense of emotional ambiguity, allowing the listener to project their own perspectives and yearnings onto those immaculate pop songs.

Fresh off the heels of this year's long-awaited Loveless followup, simply titled mbv, My Bloody Valentine stopped by SF this past Friday for its first Bay Area appearance since 2008, on its first tour in support of new material since the early '90s. Read more »

Party Radar: Burning Mom, Disco Daddy, Hardkiss Brothers, Delroy Edwards, Stompy + Sunset, more

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"Underground" doesn't just mean night, doesn't just mean music, doesn't just mean hip/trendy byword. If you want a jolt of that old-fashioned DIY charge that parties used have in San Francisco, I highly recommend a stop by Zinefest this weekend in the County Fair building in Golden Gate Park. You'll feel punky, nerdy, hip, creative, and cute all at once. The only thing missing is "loud" -- but you'll be shouting in your head how neat everything is.

Oh, and if the Twirl and Dip ice cream truck is nearby, you can dance for joy with a giant sprinkle-topped sundae. Who needs clubs at all? Well anyway, here's some parties.

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Mission eviction leaves activists without a home base

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Mission residents who abruptly lost their battle against eviction Aug. 27 were given one last chance to retrieve belongings from their loft before their locks were changed by the landlord and sheriff. 

The group of artists and activists occupied a 5,300 square foot space on the second floor of what’s known as the 17 Reasons Building, located at 3265 17th Street. They had been tipped off that the eviction might take place yesterday afternoon, after a request for a stay was denied during a morning visit to the courthouse. They headed straight home from there.Read more »

Solomon: What the assault on whistleblowers has to do with Syria

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Norman Solomon is co-founder of RootsAction.org and founding director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. His books include “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.” Information about the documentary based on the book is at www.WarMadeEasyTheMovie.org.

Without whistleblowers, the mainline media outlets are more transfixed than ever with telling the official story. And at a time like this, the official story is all about spinning for war on Syria.

Every president who wants to launch another war can’t abide whistleblowers. They might interfere with the careful omissions, distortions and outright lies of war propaganda, which requires that truth be held in a kind of preventative detention.

By mid-week, media adrenalin was at fever pitch as news reports cited high-level sources explaining when the U.S. missile attacks on Syria were likely to begin, how long they might last, what their goals would be. But what about other (potential) sources who have documents and other information that contradict the official story?

It’s never easy for whistleblowers to take the risk of exposing secret realities. At times like these, it’s especially difficult -- and especially vital -- for whistleblowers to take the chance.

When independent journalist I.F. Stone said “All governments lie and nothing they say should be believed,” he was warning against the automatic acceptance of any government claim. That warning becomes most crucial when a launch of war is imminent. That’s when, more than ever, we need whistleblowers who can leak information that refutes the official line. Read more »

Live Shots: Black Sabbath at Shoreline Amphitheatre

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Reunions can be hit or miss.

Maybe it’s been too long, maybe you’ve lost your chops, maybe you’re getting old and things just aren’t working the way they used to. Maybe your drummer doesn’t want to play.  In the case of Black Sabbath, thankfully, only the latter was true (and it didn’t seem to matter much), and as fans at the Shoreline Ampitheatre witnessed on Monday night, reunions can be a beautiful thing. Read more »

Fulfill MLK's dream of a guaranteed income

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OPINION Today, Aug. 28, we mark the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech at the March on Washington. But we are sobered by the fact that 46 million citizens are living in poverty and that we have become two Americas — one for the rich and one for the rest of us.  Read more »

North Beach conflict-of-interest zone

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It's been over a year since North Beach's Piazza Market closed its doors – but nothing has come along to take its place. The property, boasting 12,000 square feet at $4 per square foot, has attracted plenty of interest yet still remains empty.

"There's been strong activity on the space – we've had several offers," notes realtor Jeremy Blateis. "If there were less restrictions this place would have been sold already." Read more »

SF water unaffected by wildfire – so far

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The giant rim fire raging through Yosemite has tripled in size since Aug. 21, burning about 149,000 acres and approaching the vicinity of the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, the source of San Francsico’s water supply, according to the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.

In an update, the SFPUC noted that the city’s water system has not been impacted but is being closely monitored for changes to water quality.Read more »

Just a pipe dream? SF’s Whirr gets 'Around'

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In the cyclical nature of sonic trends, shoegaze has risen from the grave and out of obscurity again. With old guard bands such as My Bloody Valentine and Mazzy Star releasing new material, acts from this generation are following in their footsteps, reviving what was once out of vogue.

And in the midst of this comes Whirr, a dichotomy of sound, layered and simplistic at the same time, wrapped up in a tight package. Formed in San Francisco in 2011, through what guitarist and founding member Nick Bassett describes as basic boredom, the six-piece outfit decries its shoegaze leanings, searching for a heavier sound. Read more »

The Performant: Fringe Dwellers

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It’s hard to believe, but the 32nd annual Edmonton Fringe is already over and touring companies like Naked Empire Bouffon are packing their bags to move on to the next festival, while artists who have finished their runs head for home — whether that’s Australia, the UK, or just North of the High Level Bridge. As at every Fringe, my goal has been to see just as many shows as I can, and in between stage-managing Naked Empire’s run and feverishly making deadlines, I saw 35, which ranged in content and execution from the merely mundane to the inarguably sublime. Here’s a roundup of my personal favorites and companies I recommend watching out for should they make over to San Francisco.

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Solomon: You failed to break the spirit of Bradley Manning: An open letter to President Obama

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Norman Solomon is co-founder of RootsAction.org and founding director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. His books include “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death.” Information on the documentary based on the book is at WarMadeEasyTheMovie.org.

Dear President Obama: Read more »

How I learned to stop worrying and just trust Larry

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As I leave for Burning Man, I wanted to share an article that I wrote for the on-playa BRC Weekly. Enjoy, and I'll see you all on the on the other side:

This is as good as it gets, burners, right here and right now in beautiful, bountiful Black Rock City. And this is the way it’s always going be, year after year, like a dusty Groundhog Day on acid. Only the numbers and faces of the citizens and the things we create for one another will change. Read more »