Although I am still in the middle of rebuilding and upgrading the blog, I wanted to do a quick set of endorsements for the 2014 election in San Francisco. The statewide offices are going to be pretty much a blowout for a certain party (why, I don’t know but whatever), but locally we have some important issues so here we go with my quick, dirty, and extremely pointed suggestions for you if you haven’t voted yet.
Proposition A (Muni bond): Reluctant YES. I don’t like the wording of this thing – Joe Eskenazi did a great exposé on this a few weeks ago, and I don’t necessarily trust this administration or its appointees to do the right thing with borrowed money. That said, NOT doing so now would only increase the cost of needed projects later, and we have a chance to vote in new leadership very soon which could ensure the money is spent well. So, YES.
Proposition B (Set-asides for Muni): NO. For 9 years I’ve been saying the SFMTA and Muni need a stable funding source of their own, I supported Proposition A in 2007 which claimed to do that (and was eviscerated by Mayor Newsom and others soon afterward). There has been no real campaign to push this at all, no mailers, no TV ads, no money, so I’m voting NO. If Supervisor Wiener was serious about this, he would have mounted a real campaign – instead he put it on the ballot and spent most of his time raising money for himself, even though he has no real opposition. Try again, City Hall, you’re failing right now at this.
Proposition C (Some Kids Thing): NO. I don’t understand why we have to keep voting on these special little taxes or funds or whatever to pay for “kids.” Can’t we just raise some taxes for the schools and be done with it?
Proposition D (Something about Retirees): NO COMMENT. This is one of those things I don’t understand why we have to vote on, I’m sure there’s some arcane reason but don’t we pay people big salaries to figure this out for us?
Proposition E (“Soda Tax:): NO. There’s no evidence any of the money raised would actually prevent any kids’ obesity – this is a big money grab by Parks and Rec and other City Departments to get more money. I’m sure plenty of people will be hired with six figure salaries to do “outreach” and many “contractors” will get their money, but I have no evidence it would help people’s health.
Proposition F (Waterfront): YES. Everyone that usually is at each others’ throats politically are all supporting this, so feel good and I guess something wonderful will happen. Just like they always say.
Proposition G (Real Estate Tax): Sort of YES. I mean, this bears no resemblance to the bill Harvey Milk championed, and if passed will likely be thrown out in court. That said, the SF Realtors have spent a lot of money pumping out scary mailers that are full of it, so I’m voting yes as a big middle finger to the San Francisco Realtors Association downtown. Also, I don’t like seeing people evicted from their homes by some out of town speculator.
Propositions H & I (Parks): Oh, God, I’m voting YES/NO. I can’t believe I’m actually having to take a position on this, and once again I’m finding I dislike both sides (the H people keep bombarding me with emails) but again, this is a vote out of spite to stick it to SF Parks and Rec, who are on a mad dash to make you pay for the parks you already pay for. These people make Muni look good, so stick it to Parks and Rec and hope that when the dust settles, we can have a change of leadership in City Hall that might actually consider the public’s interest first for a change.
Proposition J (Minimum Wage): YES. Although I think this should be a federal issue, and keep things consistent everywhere to make it easier to administrate, the minimum wage of today is worth less in actual dollars than it was in 1968. I know there are some downsides, but when you consider how much it is to live anywhere around here, not just SF, I can’t see why not. Besides the bigwigs got their big pay raises for decades.
Proposition K (Housing Affordability): NO. This is a useless “advisory measure,” which means that you can have this thing say anything to make you feel good, but it has absolutely no power of law at all whatsoever. We vote on these things every cycle and they get people riled up, when in fact it can’t do a thing about the issue it purports to support. Vote NO, and if someone has a measure to banish these idiotic things once and for all, vote for it!
Proposition L (Anti Muni Measure): NO. This is a useless (and extremely stupid and misleading) “advisory measure,” which means that you can have this thing say anything to make you feel good, but it has absolutely no power of law at all whatsoever. We vote on these things every cycle and they get people riled up, when in fact it can’t do a thing about the issue it purports to support. Vote NO, and if someone has a measure to banish these idiotic things once and for all, vote for it!
That’s all for now. I’m not taking comments on this post because the comment system hasn’t been finished yet, and if you don’t like one of these, you’re free to vote however you like. I really don’t care, but people keep asking me so here’s my take – do with it what you will.