As Democrats go, Chiang seems to be a better choice than Newsom or Villaragosa. Jon Regardle reports:
Newsom and AnVil both have flaws. Each suffered a damaging extramarital affair, and Villaraigosa was a mediocre mayor at best. Plus, once you get beyond their key bases of support, you wind up with a lot of Californians who lean conservative. That may not be definitive in a June primary, but if Chiang finishes in the top two and moves on to the November runoff, you can see him as more palatable to Republicans in places such as Bakersfield and Orange County.
Chiang seems ready to swing big. By all accounts he is willing to do do the work the governor’s race requires. His website is decent, even if the main insignia, with a green badge-shaped outline around his name, looks like a pudgy arrowhead turned upside down.
“We can’t be great going forward if we have third-world infrastructure.” — John Chiang
It’s been almost three years since Lt. Gov. Newsom, in his capacity as one of the three members of the State Lands Commission, filed a lawsuit against the people of San Francisco to do just that. Now the Chairman of the State Lands Commission, Newsom continues to sue San Francisco to invalidate Proposition B, the Waterfront Height Limit Right to Vote Act. San Francisco voters overwhelmingly approved Prop. B in 2014 in the aftermath of the 8 Washington luxury condo fiasco to ensure voters always have the opportunity to weigh in on future plans to raise the existing height limits along The City’s shoreline. Three years and many legal filings later, the lawsuit is about to have its day in court at a hearing in June. Both sides have submitted lengthy legal briefs making the case to Superior Court Judge Suzanne R. Bolanos that she should rule in their favor. The impact of Bolanos’ decision will ripple far beyond one ballot measure and one city.
Chronicle columnist David Talbot offers a brief interview with Gavin Newsom in which Talbot cites “gay marriage” as an issue on which he admires Newsom’s pluck. (Although he can not cite a second instance because no one can. And gay pockets hold a lot of campaign donations, as Newsom has always been well aware of).
“And then there’s slick and corporate Newsom — the leader who sometimes seems more of a tech entrepreneur than a man of the people, with his talk of re-engineering democracy while taking bags full of campaign cash from Airbnb and private equity firms. Newsom has raised more money in his race for governor than any of his rivals, with a big boost from Airbnb, whose employees have kicked in more than $225,000 so far to his campaign. While progressive San Francisco officials have desperately tried to clamp reasonable limits on Airbnb, as the short-term rental behemoth threatens to turn the city into its tourist domain, Newsom has opposed all such regulatory efforts.”
This makes it pretty clear that Newsom is beholden to the wealthy. No surprise there!
Talbot, of course, fails to ask about prisons, the police, his staunch support for neoliberal policies (including park privatization), charter schools, how corporate marijuana legislation will unfold on the ground, the problems of extortionate rent and real estate prices, high fees at State universities and many other topics…..
Agnos finds the political establishment to be woefully behind the electorate when it comes to deciding the city’s future. He’s particularly critical of another former mayor, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, who campaigned for 8 Washington and — as chairman of the State Lands Commission — is suing the city to overturn Prop. B. “This is supposedly Mr. ‘Citizenville,’” said Agnos, referring to Newsom’s book that touted the expansion of participatory democracy in the digital age. “And he’s suing the city he once led, saying the citizens shouldn’t decide.
“I call Gavin the greatest one-night stand in politics. He looks great, he talks great. But you wake up the next morning and you ask yourself, ‘What was that all about?’”
“Jones noted that with the defeat of the “anti-business” progressives, Lee and his moderate, pro-business supporters had to “capture that and move very fast … We just need to pick up where we left off.”
Under Mayor Gavin Newsom, none of this had been possible, she said.
“Our previous mayor, Gavin Newsom, was a fuck-up because he was arrogant,” Jones said.
Mayor Lee, who Jones called an honest worker bee, had little political experience and had to be told to make sure people called him “Mr. Mayor” instead of just “Ed,” as he at first wanted.
“You gotta walk in front of me,” Jones said she told Lee. “You get this together, brother.”
My friend Marc Benioff (12) got me to start meditating.
Huh…so you and Benioff are, like, out there in the woods in Marin— No, it was just in conversation. He gave me the space to not think meditating was, uh, odd. He was commenting about how some of his closest and most successful friends, some well-known people, all share that in common. And I said, “Really?” I remember it was just this sort of aha moment, where all of a sudden I didn’t think it strange. I thought maybe it was essential. And for the last two, two and a half years, I’ve been very devoted to it. And it’s been profound for me.