Deserted Financial District. Photo by Leslie Rabine, Dec. 21, 2020.

In recent months, Mayor London Breed and her office had been touting a proposal to revive San Francisco’s moribund city center that they called the “Downtown Economic Recovery Plan.” 

In February, she unveiled the “Roadmap for Downtown San Francisco’s Future.” Perhaps someone noticed that the former acronym for the big plan was “DERP.” 

So, that got changed. That’s new. But not everything in this Roadmap is. The Roadmap is a set of goals, and a spiffy website. But the new plan is neither new, nor a plan. 

And that’s a bit bewildering, because if ever this city could use a cunning plan, it’d be one to save downtown, a realm of empty office buildings, failing ancillary businesses meant to serve nonexistent office workers, and ever-degrading street conditions. Even in the best of times, the FiDi/downtown was not a place San Franciscans visited if they didn’t have to.

Out of sight, out of mind: Until the bills come due. Downtown is this city’s economic engine and, at present, San Francisco is a very pretty, well-upholstered car with a growing colony of possums under the hood in lieu of a functioning motor. Sooner or later, this will affect our ability to operate the vehicle — and pay for its upkeep.

So it was, again, a bit bewildering that three of Breed’s most-touted points in the Roadmap — simplifying and speeding up permitting; allowing developers to defer paying impact fees; and expediting the transformation of office buildings into residential — are decidedly not new and revelatory. These are some of the very first ideas the city proposed at the dawn of the pandemic. 

In fact, they’re three of the very first proposals listed in the October, 2020, Economic Recovery Task Force Report, an effort convened by Breed and then-Board President Norman Yee. This report requires some half-a-dozen pages just to list the people who worked on it both in government and adjunct to it; it has more writers than Saturday Night Live. 

A lot of people spent a lot of time assembling this report, which has 41 suggestions for the city. Hardly any of them have been enacted, let alone initiated. Let alone even read, it seems. That includes the three listed above. And these are things a mayor could’ve gotten the ball rolling on; the department heads work for her, after all. She didn’t necessarily need to legislate. And she didn’t need to take it to the voters, who won’t be able to weigh in until mid-2024.

In fact, prior to local, state and federal covid emergency measures recently expiring, the mayor could’ve acted far more decisively on this with emergency powers. It is, again, bewildering to ignore urgent proposals when you can act quickly and unilaterally on them and then re-propose them — years later — when you cannot. 

A small army of people put together the Task Force Report that Breed commissioned years ago, and this did not escape their notice. San Francisco doesn’t have a coming-up-with-plans problem. We have a reading-the-plans problem. And we have an implementing-the-plans problem. 

Downtown, Dec. 24, 2020. Photo by Leslie Rabine.

With all that said, are many of the things Mayor Breed wants to do downtown good ideas? Hell yes, they are. If you want to keep the city’s pedantic codes from preventing art studios or life sciences or a gumdrop store or anything unusual moving into downtown and if you want to ease the conversion of office buildings into housing, marvelous.

San Francisco doesn’t need to coddle corporate bad actors or roll over the way Texas did for Tesla, or Nevada did for Zappos (or the Raiders). But it also doesn’t need to perpetuate an onerous, even disdainful business climate. For too many businesses in San Francisco, the punchline of Dave Chappelle’s PopCopy sketch — “Why treat the customer this way? Why? ‘Cause fuck ‘em, that’s why!” — is likely deeply triggering. 

Improving this situation would be an unmitigated good, come what may downtown. It would be nice for San Francisco to be governed properly, right? 

But even that, as well as the more controversial tax breaks and other measures Breed is bandying about, likely won’t make more than a marginal difference in the state of downtown. 

Simply put, city government didn’t make downtown into the tech Valhalla it was, with soaring rents and minuscule vacancies and rivers of tax revenue. 

“I can tell you that I was the director of economic development. And we didn’t do anything to get tech into San Francisco,” recalls David Prowler, who worked for the city between 1988 and 1999. “We really didn’t aggressively court it. We were as surprised as anybody else to see the tech boom. We were so focused on biotech, we didn’t see the tech boom coming.” 

Adds a veteran City Hall hand of more recent vintage, “The idea that San Francisco did something to only attract tech tenants — this is looking back on history and assigning intention and agency where none existed.” 

Tech companies, by and large, sited here because this is where the talent was, and where the talent wanted to be; if, by some alchemy, the talent wanted to live in Sitka, Alaska, they’d have likely gone there, with tech workers wearing Patagonia parkas instead of Patagonia vests.

Tech companies had so much money, they could monopolize this city’s office space to the point of absorbing it before it was even created. In retrospect, this was a problem — how many stories did we hear about nonprofits, etc. being pushed out to Oakland and beyond? — but it was hard to argue with the money pouring into city coffers. While there were city figures warning about a budding downtown monoculture, they were, by and large, not listened to.  

So it remains to be seen if San Francisco’s government can artificially re-create the success it didn’t initially create. Or how much any one city can push back against global trends. 

“Every downtown is dealing with this to a greater or lesser extent. San Francisco is just a bit more vulnerable,” says Michael Berne, a San Francisco real-estate consultant with a focus on urban downtowns. “But these are much larger forces. Can San Francisco play on the margins? Probably. But we’re part of a larger universe and these same trends are affecting all cities.” 

Mayor Breed has, of late, touted Artificial Intelligence as the city’s next big thing. But AI is just another tech company; its workers do not figure to head to central offices five days a week from 9 to 5 and prop up the flagging $18 lunch salad industry.

There is also talk of luring biotech to downtown. This seems downright fanciful. Biotech has purpose-built buildings in Mission Bay. Or, for that matter, in the South Bay, where their workers also have sprawling parking lots and won’t have to hopscotch over human effluvia on the way to work. 

All of which gets to the underlying problem facing San Francisco: The increasingly untenable situation of misery and drug use on our streets. It is very hard to imagine any sales pitch to would-be San Francisco businesses not being strained because of this. Even during periods of fabulous wealth and prosperity, San Francisco was a city awash in desperation and antisocial behavior. 

The reams of statistics that indicate San Francisco’s violent crime levels are on the low end for a major American city do not resonate with people nearly as much as the lurid details of individual incidents, such as the middle-aged couple being savagely beaten on Super Bowl Sunday near Dolores Park for the high crime of telling two women on a motorized scooter to not ride on the sidewalk. 

This incident will resonate all the more, because the victim said police “had no sense of urgency.” To wit, it was the victim, not the cops, who purportedly took it upon himself to collect the scooter the assailants left behind. Yes, you have to punch in a credit card to ride one of these scooters; yes, this appears to be a bewildering oversight by the SFPD. 

Anecdotal evidence hits harder than statistical evidence; ask Chesa Boudin how that goes. And, anecdotally, it feels like the police, who long ago lost interest in property crime, are increasingly indifferent to violent crime, too.

Keeping the streets clean and safe “is the normal job of government. That should not be triggered by a crisis,” says Prowler. “These are the things government should be able to do. And they’re things San Francisco didn’t do a very good job of when fiscal concerns were less pressing.” 

So it’s hard to imagine businesses elbowing each other out of the way to repopulate downtown while this situation persists, and worsens. Or, for that matter, regular folks heading there hoping to spend a little money on a Friday night. 

“I can tell you that I was the director of economic development. And we didn’t do anything to get tech into San Francisco.”

David Prowler, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development, 1998-99

Your Humble Narrator worked for more than 10 years in the FiDi (in the same building for two different newspapers, hilariously). And, come sundown, you can all but hear the workers shouting “Yabba-dabba-doo,” sliding down the dinosaur and heading nearly anywhere else. It clears out at nights and is bereft on the weekends. 

Little wonder: “Cleanliness and homelessness grab a lot of attention. But if you remove the trash and find a place for the homeless, you’re still left with a built environment that’s pretty grim,” sums up Tom Radulovich, the executive director of Livable City and a longtime former BART commissioner. 

Every effort Breed or her predecessors has made to make downtown a destination has fizzled. And that was before the pending devastation of BART and Muni.

“BART was designed to keep San Francisco the economic and cultural center of the region. That is its purpose,” says Radulovich.

“San Francisco, especially downtown, is more dependent on BART than any other place in the region.” 

Downtown view from the Mission. May 9, 2020, around noon. Photo by Kerim Harmanci.

City Hall is a ​​Manichean place, where if you’re not being cynical you’re being naive, and vice versa. 

So the many folks who watched proposals that they came up with in 2020 being sent back at them in 2023 — “like yesterday’s mashed potatoes without the gravy,” as one put it — were not surprised. 

Controversial tax break measures, especially when undertaken without input from labor, will certainly induce some level of rancor. Politicians who poll worse than the mayor will weigh in. This doesn’t actually solve problems, but does offer her the chance to counterbalance and distinguish herself; a winning political strategy, thus far. 

Any single elected official who lashes themself to the resurrection of downtown will be politically immolated. San Francisco hasn’t successfully transformed mid-Market, let alone the Tenderloin, and this is potentially far more complex. 

So, politically, it’s good to spread things out. Even if the city’s myriad departments could’ve been spurred into action by executive fiat years ago. 

Perhaps, in retrospect, it’s unfortunate the mayor ditched her plan’s original title. After all, the acronym “DERP” also works for Declare Everyone Responsible for the Problem.

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Managing Editor/Columnist. Joe was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left.

“Your humble narrator” was a writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015, and a senior editor at San Francisco Magazine from 2015 to 2017. You may also have read his work in the Guardian (U.S. and U.K.); San Francisco Public Press; San Francisco Chronicle; San Francisco Examiner; Dallas Morning News; and elsewhere.

He resides in the Excelsior with his wife and three (!) kids, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.

The Northern California branch of the Society of Professional Journalists named Eskenazi the 2019 Journalist of the Year.

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  1. I travel the entire planet regularly. Was just in this week in Tokyo, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur and am in NYC right now. No city can normalize vagrants and not decline into chaos. Nothing will improve in San Francisco until vagrancy and drug addicts are controlled and suppressed, rather than glorified and supported. None of the cities I visit, all over the earth allow the madness West Coast cities do! None!

  2. 2024 cannot come soon enough. San Francisco is in desperate need of a new mayor. It’s insane how much money there is here and how little gets done in terms of fixing the City’s moribund departments. We need a strong mayor who understands what it means to be a leader. It does not mean being a queen.

  3. To the moderator: I see my earlier comment was deleted. This is exactly the mindset I mentioned in my comment. “It is my way or the highway’. Adios.

    1. Douglas — 

      I’m the moderator and nobody deleted your comment. These are monitored in real-time and nobody is hovering over the keyboard waiting for you to finish your thought.



  4. ‘…a city awash in desperation and antisocial behavior…’ That’s it in a nutshell. Every time I come to visit family, I find I cannot wait to leave again. The city government is inept, most residents seem to be absolutist in their mindsets (agree with our doctrine, or else we trash you!), public decorum… what is that? The list goes on and on. It is small wonder people are fleeing. And ‘No’, San Francisco is not that beautiful. It relies far too much on its natural setting. In short, SF has a lot of work to do to make itself presentable and likeable.

    1. San Francisco was beautiful…when I moved here in 1978 to live in a gay nirvana. But for many reasons, it did not last.

  5. Politics are gonna get brutal here when the city finally has to balance its budget.

    School closures, city staff layoffs, cuts in services — it’s all gonna happen, and every bit of it is going to be contested.

  6. Joe Eskenazi is my favorite Bay Area journalist, bar none. This piece should be shared and read widely among any folks who care about this city. I’m about to send it to all the people in my little circle right now.

  7. Joe Joe,

    Excellent work. You highlighted all aspects of our frustrations and I hope all the clowns down at city hall read this through. It shouldn’t be this difficult.

  8. If you could look back a few years ago to the city compared to ghost town covid and now, it’s giving overrated and unconcerned. Pre covid rent prices sky rocketed due to the incoming surge of tech and still remain that way when the businesses are gone, evictions are nonstop and homeless spew all over. There was rapid economic growth of the high tech industry in San Francisco which created hundreds of thousands of new jobs. The resultant high demand for housing, combined with the lack of supply, (caused by severe restrictions on the building of new housing units) caused dramatic increases in rents and extremely high housing prices.For example, from 2012 to 2016, the San Francisco metropolitan area added 373,000 new jobs, but permitted only 58,000 new housing units.
    Vacancies have also been highlighted as an issue in San Francisco and nearby cities, estimating in 2019 that “San Francisco has nearly five empty homes per homeless resident.” Think about that. Families of 3+ can hardly afford a 2bedroom home. Tenants rent out their rooms or basements, known as in laws, just to make rent. Renters also have to settle as you will not, CAN NOT find a real decent apartment (bathroom, kitchen, living room, bedroom) below $1800. San Francisco has to start with the limitations that they have set on the minorities, homeless and immigrants. San Francisco needs to greatly increase the supply of all housing, majorly subsidized housing and housing at affordable rates. (rid of rates such as rent $1500+ for a studio and environment is trash, literally) People shouldn’t have to struggle to survive, let alone live. People also shouldn’t have to jump through hurdles and loop holes to receive aid in housing, healthcare, schools, receive proper medication due to fear everyone is an addict, and community services. There are great resources here however to move forward with progressive economic flow the city will need to start with affordable, subsidized, substantial housing for all before anymore businesses, tech companies, and job opportunities. It will take a united community, ya know like how they march and rally with hundreds led and followed with police about abortion but never anything that desperately matters. That energy should be driven towards affordable housing for all as well. We need you for that Mayor London Breed then move forward with potential businesses specifically new shoppes, Boys and girls club, rehab centers, independent businesses and more franchises.It’ll take more than the Mayor and negative comments definitely won’t help. How about ask what can I do to help serve? How can we as a whole fix deeper issues than empty building businesses for more economic gain? #GreaterFrisco #LivingComfyintheCity,and%20extremely%20high%20housing%20prices.

  9. The UC system has 70% more applications than it can accept. UCSF – a medical only school – has just a 3% acceptance rate. Office towers have an issue converting to residential: plumbing for single baths and kitchens. This problem is alleviated by creating classroom, lecture and assembly halls and—-especially —- dorms. Other than Merced only UCLA guarantees housing (at more than the cost of tuition).

    A University village. Invite everyone— UCs, Cal State and Private colleges. Bring in 70 to 100,000 students who WILL eat, drink and play where they live. Its a perfect location and demand is very high.

    1. Fantastic idea.
      Dorm it.
      The downtown deserted tech building floor space experienced so far is an open common area surrounded by small, closed door office and meeting spaces on the perimeter.
      14 floors of that.
      For an office space: privacy shade, futon, desk, mini fridge, microwave, internet ….. done.

  10. It may be time to make Market Street car friendly again and at least give the semblance of life.

    For now all we have are tumbleweeds.

    1. There are 9 streets that run parallel to the Market St between Van Ness and Embarcadero (the stretch that is closed to cars), not to mention the many other available open streets that allow you to navigate downtown. Plus, where are you going to park when you get there? If you think this one section being closed to cars to make better way to for commercial vehicles, busses, and bicycles is the problem, I’m afraid you don’t really have a grasp on the bigger picture here.

    2. at the cost of a few pedestrians and cyclists’ lives. Market was car-free for the boom. If you think driving on Market will spark downtown economic development, Please think further in a different direction.

  11. Nothing good will happen in downtown SF until Breed cleans up the squalor. She could do this by enforcing quality of life laws —even Portland is getting that message. Thanks to Joe for this lucid call out.

  12. I agree with h. Brown. We cannot be sure of Mayoral vote counts until San Francisco adopts open source voter software.

  13. I fail to see what eliminating fees to build will do to help bring business back to downtown offices, or changing offices to homes (will not work in most newer buildings anyway).

    I must say, I never voted for Breed and never will, if this is the best she can do. Oh and, what is she planning to do to get any developer to build? Fees or no fees, zoning or none, they are not building now because of low profits due to interest rates and such. Rezoning needs to happen but we need LOW INCOME housing and no for-profit developer will build that if they cannot even make enough on market rate. We need to spend what we have and get more to create truly low income housing to help get many off the streets,

    And we need a lot more Residential facilities for drug addicted and those with mental illness. Even if we forced everyone off the streets into treatment, there is no place to put them!

  14. Lovely piece and DERP is the problem.. unfortunate that they did the central subway but never put back green and trees and allowed banks to fill prime corner sites at union square. The ongoing saga of cost and lacking inventiveness to the empty buildings downtown is the reason why we don’t see much change. They had impetus to convert office space to housing years ago. now the costs are so high even to buy a smaller building and convert it may be close to impossible. Mayor Breed has no plans unless it is to redraw up some of Willies old shenanigans like newspaper racks and see them getting removed down the road. At what cost? And who got paid for those things???

  15. The days of gleaming downtowns filled with office towers providing rivers of tax revenues to city governments while their affluent workers support restaurants, dry cleaners, BART etc are essentially over even in cities that are far more business friendly than San Francisco which is pretty much everywhere. Between remote work and the AI revolution which is about to do to white collar workers what global “Free Trade” did to non People’s Republic of China blue collar workers in the last forty years (and will do so much much faster when it takes off) that ship has sailed.

  16. Campers,

    I hate to say this again but I don’t think you can get rid of Breed or her ilk unless the City converts their Voting Machines to Open Source.

    In Georgia twenty or so years ago the results from one country in races for 4 different offices all came up with the winners winning by exact same vote.

    “Coincidence” said Voting Officials.

    Open Source and Save the Paper Ballots !!

    And, as always I want to push retired Sheriff Michael Hennessey’s idea …


    “It might take a couple of tries before you get one who does what they say they’ll do during the campaign but eventually you’ll get someone like me who stays for 30 years.”

    That was the Sheriff at Daly’s Dive where I competed as a ‘pick-up Trivia team with Dennis Herrera and the Cohens.

    Hennessey won.

    Grow pot and Ayuska and Shrooms in the vacant Office Space.

    People will fight to work Downtown.


    1. H, are you proposing Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test 2.0? It might work. There are a few old buildings, like the Russ Bldg downtown which could be converted into very trippy venues. The City might even consider rebranding BART as the old Furthur Bus, and blasting old Grateful Dead concerts from speakers on Sutro Tower. Why should people be forced into fentynal overdoses when they would have a much brighter presents and futures with shrooms (and think of all the savings for DPH). I don’t know if I would trust Joe Jacob, but providing acid tabs for fans in and outside Chase would draw fans from all over the world who never heard of the NBA and would cheer like crazy for the Warriors with or without Steph. Be careful with vomit-inducing ayahuasca. Great hallucinations (or better said, theosinations) but it’s really not for dating. However Grace Cathedral might join with Temple Emanuel to create a collaborative, Gaia based, liturgy.

      1. Mark

        We laugh but are not certain with temporary amusement or visionary awe.

        In 1965 I was a Radio Operator in the Navy and we stopped by the Cannes Film thingee.

        I remember 2 things.

        First, an engineer went to sleep while balancing the ballasts or whatever and dumped thousands of diesel fuel on the beach.

        We weren’t popular anywhere.

        Second, was a 4 story Whore House (don’t know it in French).

        Floors were designated by sexual preference.

        Ahead of their time.

        Imagine how many floors such a business would need in 2023 San Francisco.

        Hire Michael Powers (from ‘Power Exchange’) to run it.


        I’m thinking Lombardi is right and we’re gonna have new Left Offensive Tackle.


        1. Campers,

          Of course, I meant RIGHT Offensive Tackle.

          When Niners signed Trent Williams he’d just sat out a year in salary dispute.

          Couldn’t believe they’d take a chance.

          Then he began to play.

          Best there ever was at that position.

          Speed ?

          A Niner QB threw an interception into the Right Flats and Corner was gone.

          He raced past everyone for a touchdown cause Quarterback wasn’t gonna tackle him.


          A blur blew past the QB and ‘intersected’ (that’s being kind, he almost killed the guy) …

          Williams had traversed nearly the entire field and have you ever seen 300 lbs at Full Speed hit 180 lbs at same ?

          He’s worth the 30 million Dave Lombardi figures he’ll get.


  17. Remember: this Mayor declared not one, but TWO states of emergency, and we are all left to ponder why she did that. Also: putting all your golden eggy weggies into Big Tech’s basket is folly. It’s Groundhog Day again London. SF’s reliance on public/private partnerships is not working out well. Legit businesses should be held accountable and should be made to clean up their messes when they trash the public commons or when they wreak havoc on our streets, sidewalks and public transit (looking at you Uber, Lyft, Waymo, Cruise). Too bad this Mayor is doubling down on real estate speculators and angel investors…….a recipe for disaster and continued and more frequent disruption of systems. Better to focus on the city’s chronic ailments: unhoused people, public education, small business, a lack of accountability and transparency by government departments, illegal evictions, the use of excessive force and racism @ SFPD. But she won’t. These are complex problems that require thought, patience and dedication. This mayor prefers photo ops, podium speeches and movie premieres.

    1. “Better to focus on the city’s chronic ailments”

      And that requires a taxbase. London is trying to cultivate that taxbase by adopting policies that are attractive to the businesses that pay for all the generous services that you wish to see.

      SF minus Tech = Detroit.

      1. Simple: Tax Tech and Real Estate billionaires on every million they make. San Francisco ain’t Peoria. Multi billion dollar companies should pay their fair share for the privilege of doing business here. How are they contributing to San Francisco’s and her citizens’ well being? By creating a mirage economy with slave jobs (Uber, Amazon, Instacart, Lyft) where only investors profit?

        1. San Francisco tried that and most of the businesses decided the privilege wasn’t worth it. I’m thinking we tax nonprofit grants next? It’s the only growing industry.

          1. Elon’s argument: don’t tax my multi billion dollar company or I’ll move to Texas…..Georgia…..Alabama. But Elon’s moving Tesla HQ back to the SF Bay Area, so there goes your argument.

      2. Was sf a wasteland before tech took over? No, it was a much better, more livable city. It was a place many different kinds of people could afford to live. The notion that tech served as a golden goose that made sf thrive is laughable. The reality is that all the major problems that sf is dealing became much worse with the entrance of the tech industry in the city on a large scale. The costs of massive inequality far outweigh the tax receipts these companies are willing to pay. Politicians should concentrate on cultivating a place that people want to live and taking care of those who are most vulnerable. Everything else follows from that.

        1. Correlation is not causation, and the structural factors which made the problems worse were in place long before the 2010s made them impossible to ignore. Put differently, enjoy servicing half a century of pension obligations without the tech tax base to paper over structural deficits.

  18. The City is in love with process, most often at the expense of action and results. The Mayor is well intentioned but lacks force of will, the ability to bend agencies or cajole the BoS in a meaningful way. But the real truth is that no one in city government has ever run a business, and they do not know how to jump-start the engine of growth. We’ve already fallen for the tech CEO song and dance, and look how that turned out. But hating tech isn’t enough to keep the tax revenue up. The City needs a mayor with a vision that is more than colored lights reflected on buildings.

    1. This mayor is not at all well intentioned. She encourages fealty over the well being of San Franciscans (cough cough….undated letters of resignation for her appointed commissioners.) She is mean spirited, petty, stubborn and egotistical. When her do-as-i-say-not-as-I-do hypocrisy is called out, she doubles down, or worse: goes after anyone who criticizes her policies and failed decision making. She blames others who don’t have the power she has. She has been at City Hall for over 10 years making six figure salaries. The city is worse off with her in charge. She should become a lobbyist. She’s not cut out for public service.

  19. Every time I read about a problem in this city, it is under the Mayor’s domain. The list is endless. Now the scooters are leaving the city because it is too hard to do business here. What does she do all day beside attend ribbon-cutting ceremonies?

    1. She goes to ribbon cutting ceremonies. It’s what she does best even though she’s not the best. Her ambition is to run for the Senate which would be a good place for her, because Senators do little more other than attend ribbon-cutting ceremonies and fundraisers with wealthy real estate developers and tech moguls. That’s basically why no one in the Senate realized DiFi was brain dead for the past decade (or more) — they thought she was just one of the boys. A good place for Breed. She’ll make a big impression.

  20. Always good to see your friendly narrator who was eager to give technology workers a friendly, “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!” and boasted confidence in the eternal attractiveness of conferences at the Moscone regardless of surrounding cesspool finally have some humble pie for breakfast.

    1. Jake —

      I had Special K for breakfast, and, last I checked, you’re still just an inveterate commenter on our website.

      I’m not sure how you see my repeated statements that we should solve our street conditions for the benefit of people on the streets and in neighborhoods — and not tourists — as an own on me. Your comments about tech workers are an oversimplification of anything I’ve written to the point of simply being crass stupidity.

      Nice to see you gloating about everyone’s pending misery. It’s a not a good look, but it’s an honest one.


      1. Joe since you love a close read, maybe try doing a good job at it. I didn’t gloat about the misery. I think it’s a tragedy and am embarrassed by how folks who should know better (including editors and writers for this blog / news outfit) mislead readers in covering it. I gloated about your metaphorical breakfast. Surely you are familiar with the limited artistic license available to us English language speakers?

        Next time try to hit the mark when getting into trench warfare in the comments section.

        1. Jake — 

          Happy to admit I misread your comment if you admit you misread pretty much the entirety of my work product.


          1. Joe, I am human and make mistakes. I shared your article with friends and even got your texts for a while because you’re one of the few people who criticizes the progs for their clown show government (the mods are easy to hate too!). At the same time, I think you are way too cynical about the technology industry and its corrupting influence on the body politic.

  21. I never said she was a competent mayor.

    Of course, that doesn’t make me feel any better knowing that we’re stuck with her at least until we can vote her out. Or maybe she’ll give up as she should have long ago, quit, and let Peskin take the job.

    1. Ah yes, Peskin the guy who drives half a mile to work and hasn’t had a honest job in his life yet has an 8 figure net worth off mommy and daddy’s largesse is going to save San Francisco.

      1. Guess you’re not too familiar with the distance between Breed’s home and City Hall and are totally clueless about how she gets between the two.

        I wasn’t advocating for Peskin. I was merely pointing out that because he is the President of the Board, he’s next in line at least temporarily. Sure wish Walton were in that spot.

        1. Breed gets there via private SUV escort. By my standard, the only electeds worth considering are Preston, Haney, and Wiener. In any case, it’s a thin bench of mostly fools but what we deserve. At least Breed is less odious than the rest (as borne out by her best of the worst approval ratings!).

          Walton. That’s the guy who thought Caltrain should go kapoof before sober minded advocated raised the alarm right? Surely he’s the guy to trust in coming up with a plan to bring bodies back to the CBD.