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Dear San Francisco,

I want to be the Mayor for four years to reform the Office and civic sector in the face of deficit economy and then turn the office over to an elected Ed Lee, in 2015.

If elected I refuse to serve a second term and promise to hand the next Mayor, whomever it is, $500,000 and an SF Giveback Fund to supplement the General Fund in times of financial crisis (details in campaign promises).

This was been a depressing week in our once fair town: macho firefighters in mourning push the public defender around, crafty planning commissioners push to illegally draft Interim Mayor Lee onto the ballot via campaigning, and strike-threatening MUNI operators reject a contract for no good reason but a pissing contest about respect.

(sigh)

What happened to you San Francisco? There’s more information than ever. But the more information there is, the less caring and more conniving our politicians and newspaper editors seem.

A stageplay of theatrical poses substitutes for governance and media. A goofy, smiling happy face hangs like a thin curtain over a City with $850 million in debt and ballooning pensions and benefits schemes that are unsustainable.

The new politicians are like models – empty and to be filled by waiting interests. They have no guts.

People are suffering job loss and insecurity and snarky in-crowd attitude has replaced public service.

Parrots, who possess more than most of us, and can thus afford to produce new media, line up in factionalized flocks spitting insults and snide comments at one another as our town loses its grace. New blogs emerge and our San Francisco values are smoothed into the nothingness of pluralized media. The Bay Citizen launches an all out “NY1” or KRON4 style attack on the blogging media consciousness with $5million in startup money from Hellman, and now the new SF residents mistake it for media that has existed forever, a trusted SF news source, overnight. Not that it hasn’t been effective at coverage,but  it imposes itself upon us, by its posture.

There are many new residents who’ve moved into overpriced SF housing built in the last decade at rates few of us can afford. More condos go up weekly to rent to imaginary future residents from elsewhere, with no one questioning why we “have to grow bigger and more dense” as a City before bridging deficits or working on infrastructure.

Some of these new residents are easily manipulated because they do not have history or context and can be herded like sheep through big money being spent to ensure the view of developers are perpetuated.

Twitter Giveaways and Treasure Island Boondoggles face no resistance because of an apathy by the populace, not because they are good ideas. The unenforcable and idiotic Sit/Lie Law is allowed to be tried because some of these new residents don’t make eye contact with anyone in the street, walk fast with headphones and diddling cel phones to avoid it.

When I arrived in this town decades ago, I tried hard to learn how to be a San Franciscan and was taught by this City. Can we not, as a City, ask these new residents to respect our famed tolerance and compassion? No? Why not?

Interim Mayor Lee and Supervisor Chiu would have us believe we cannot say anything to them for fear we might offend them and they would leave?

These newcomers are being used by interests and held ignorant of what has been lost, is being taken daily from us.

(cf. the Twitter Giveaway, these people just gave away $47million to Twitter that should have been in the General Fund. They did it smiling and crowing about jobs and one dared to call himself progressive!?)

Austerity Measures and Real Talk

The global economic reality is that we are in a serious downturn that shows no real signs of rapid recovery. We must change the attitude of state to one of concern, analysis, efficiency and solvency.

Interim Mayor Ed Lee’s proposed 5-year budgets (for the first time ever) are being sold by many interests as popular opinion, but in fact they represent the latest version of SF corruption: vested interests lining their pockets with long-term public funding.

Ed Lee is wrong on this one and we are in an economic situation that demands flexibility. I want to slow down development, compose flexible one-year budgets and make rapid changes to policies that don’t work in favor of those that do.

I propose a public and transparent method of austerity measures that gives respect where it is due and expects contributions from civic and private sectors in accordance with what it takes to right the ship of state, which lists, with no real captain since Mr. Newsom left.

Austerity measures are inevitable, but here in San Francisco we could do it completely differently from anywhere else in the world because of our culture and history as the most progressive major City in the U.S. We could generate income in totally new ways and respect our Labor by creating new schemes of reinvestment to curtail ballooning pensions and benefits schemes of the past which have incrementally become unsustainable.

All of this creativity and new methodology is only possible with new energy, and fortunately we have an instrument for the first time to allow that new energy to ascend to office: Instant Runoff Voting. IRV is a tool that could be used these next 4 months to create coalition government, but so far no one understands how to use it.

Instead of educating us about how to use Instant Runoff Voting (IRV) to help our candidates create coalitions and alliances, to seek out the best ideas of all candidates, The Chronicle and Guardian and Weekly and the blogs have done almost nothing to reduce confusion about Instant Runoff Voting. They and their “legitimate” candidates see it as a threat.

Hey, we voted for it – used properly it’s a good thing. It could force our politicians to be more collaborative if you in the media would just do your job. Compare its use elsewhere: Minneapolis voters seemed to understand it, while Oakland voters found it confusing.

What do you think the four months before election day were like in terms of explaining IRV in Minneapolis in comparison to Oakland? What kind of coverage and explanation have we been seeing so far? Our media and the City and the other candidates are failing us.

It feels like they want Instant Runoff Voting to fail so they can all clamor together about what a bad thing IRV is. I don’t believe they even understand it, but, visualizing it as threat from the get-go, have just turned full blast against.

C’mon SF, we’re better than this.