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Monday, September 20, 2021

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News + PoliticsAirbnb, tech execs fund nasty DCCC attack piece

Airbnb, tech execs fund nasty DCCC attack piece

Sleazy mailer lies about housing, goes after mostly women of color ... and creates a "Peskin Machine" that doesn't even remotely exist

A committee funded in large part by Airbnb and tech executives has unleashed a remarkable hit piece that targets almost entirely women of color running for the Democratic County Central Committee and calls them tools of a “Peskin Machine.”

What's wrong with this picture? Pretty much everything ...
What’s wrong with this picture? Pretty much everything …

The piece accuses the candidates of “voting to stop building housing” in “the worst housing crisis in years” and tries to appear as a progressive mailing with a big stop sign over the words “evictions and displacement.”

Of course, Airbnb has been a huge source of evictions and displacement in the city.

The political goal here is obvious: The consultants who wrote the hit piece are trying to target progressive reform candidates who might be on the cusp – that is, people who might be close to winning a seat on the DCCC.

None of the targets are current elected officials who took any votes at all on any policy measures related to housing.

There’s no attack on Tom Ammiano, or David Campos, or John Burton, or even any mention of Aaron Peskin (except for his “machine,” which we will address in a moment.)

Gabriel Medina isn't even part of the Reform Slate, but his picture is here (maybe because all the other people under attack are women?)
Gabriel Medina isn’t even part of the Reform Slate, but his picture is here (maybe because all the other people under attack are women?)

Those candidates are almost certain to win one of the 24 contested seats in the critical DCCC election June 7.

So are the conservative candidates with high name recognition, like Scott Wiener and London Breed.

The control of the panel will be decided by the handful of people who aren’t already well-known or incumbents – and the ten candidates attacked by this radically misleading mailer all fall into that category.

Oddly, in the mailer sent to the West Side of town, there’s an attack on a man – Gabriel Medina – who isn’t even on the reform slate. “I guess that’s because it would have looked even worse to be attacking only women,” Myrna Melgar, one of the subjects of the hit piece, told me.

She added: “It’s shitty, to say that all of these women are just puppets of this guy.”

Let’s get this part straight right now: Aaron Peskin has no “machine.” He was recently elected to the Board of Supes with widespread progressive support, but the rest of the progressive wing on the board, and the progressive community in the city, clearly doesn’t take any orders from him. Witness the recent discussion over the future of the police chief; four supes have called for his resignation, and Peskin is not among them. In fact, when we asked Peskin for his position on the chief, he said “no comment.”

And Peskin wasn’t even the main person creating the Reform Slate for the DCCC. That was David Campos.

But apparently some polls somewhere suggest that the term “Peskin machine” might be negative, so that’s what’s on the mailers.

The mailers attack the eight women and two men for voting “to stop building housing.” The smaller print says they “made a near fatal decision to stop building affordable housing.” That’s not political hyperbole; it’s a lie, and there’s no other way to put it.

The “vote” that this piece talks about was in favor of Prop. I – a measure on last fall’s ballot that would have stopped all MARKET RATE housing in the Mission until the city had an anti-displacement plan in place. Prop. I would NOT have stopped ANY affordable-housing projects.

Every single legitimate tenant, anti-eviction, and anti-displacement group supported Prop. I.

“It’s a serious debate,” Melgar, who has spent most of her career in the affordable-housing field, told me. “Do we believe affordable housing is created by the free market, or do we believe that government intervention will create more affordable housing?”

The people who are attacking the Reform Slate women are also, in many cases, opposing Prop. C, which would mandate more affordable housing.

The mailers attack Cindy Wu, Petra DeJesus, Sophie Maxwell, Pratima Gupta, Alysabeth Alexander, Hene Kelly, Sandra Lee Fewer, Myrna Melgar, and Brigitte Davila. Oh, and Gabriel Medina and Jon Golinger, who are I guess the two token guys.

The mailers were produced by Progress San Francisco. According to state and local campaign-finance filings, that group recently received $20,000 from a committee controlled by Airbnb.

Airbnb, of course, is facing new regulations on its local business model, and has a direct interest in the outcome of the June election. If the real-estate slate, which supports this mailer, wins, the company will have a much easier time electing pro-Airbnb supervisors in the fall and derailing any attempts to limit illegal short-term rentals.

Among the other donors: Kevin York Systrom, CEO of Instagram ($30,000); Matthew Cohler, general partner, Benchmark Capital ($25,000); Zachary Bogue, Investor, Data Collective ($5,000); Stephen Simon, Simon Equity Partners ($5,000); Fergus O’Shea, facilities director, Facebook ($250)

It’s a little tricky figuring all that out. The committee filed as a state “slate mailer” committee, but the SF Ethics Commission doesn’t have full records on it. That’s a loophole that Friends of Ethics is trying to close; SF Ethics ought to be a one-stop shop for filings that impact local races.

From FOE’s Larry Bush:

Friends of Ethics asked for transfer of Slate Mailer filings from the Department of Elections to the Ethics database for nearly two years.

All that is required is for Ethics to ask the Board to transfer the filing. There is a letter on file from the FPPC stating San Francisco has this authority.

Here is a current example of why that transfer is vital if we are to follow the money in our elections.

In April “Progress San Francisco” filed as a slate mailer organization. It does not file a statement of organization (Form 410) or contributor information in San Francisco.

Some records can be found on the Secretary of State’s web portal.

Since organizing on April 27, it has made independent expenditures through its slate mailer totaling $39,278.06, all for candidates in San Francisco’s June election. This information cannot be found on the SF Ethics database, but can be obtained on Cal-access by the Secretary of State.

It reports no other expenses — no office or consultant or other costs.

Friends of Ethics suggests that this is a compelling example of the need for the Ethics Commission to act speedily to ensure that slate mailer filings be transferred to Ethics and included in the database.

If that cannot happen speedily, I recommend that the Ethics Commission database note that there are entities that do not file with Ethics and that their contributors and expenditures are not included in these databases, may involve significant spending, and that some information can be found on the Secretary of State’s web page.

I’ve seen a lot of political sleaze in this town in my 30-plus years of watching elections. But when it comes to lies and slime, this one is near the top of the list.

Tim Redmond
Tim Redmond has been a political and investigative reporter in San Francisco for more than 30 years. He spent much of that time as executive editor of the Bay Guardian. He is the founder of 48hills.
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85 COMMENTS

  1. … [Trackback]

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  2. Whoever mailed this piece is pretty clueless. It just tells people whom to vote for if they’re fed up with the real estate industry’s destruction of our city and attempts to take over our government. We owe these clowns our gratitude.

    Wiener and Breed have always been DINO’s, but it’s sad to see David Chiu mixed up with these people. He used to be a pretty cool guy who wanted to make San Francisco a great place to live.

  3. So controversy was the motivating factor rather than representing election interests in the Bay Area? Hmm.

    Screw this compassionate citizen business. You have people in NY funding your organization, which as it turns out, is simply another group trying to assert their opinions on dictating the property rights/usage of others. It’s not limited to commuter neighborhoods either, here in this case they are attempting to alter the outcome of regional representation of Democrats, who by the way, hold sway on matters across the board, not just housing. Sonja wants to reference Tea Partiers, and get in the middle of the party infighting for power. One problem – she can’t vote, and that fact proves SFBARF have no juice.

    You reply didn’t actually address anything I said, especially the Trauss quote from her fundraising slide show, overtly telling you that divineness amongst the real Renters groups was part of her grand plan. You don’t even know who you’re aligned with, huh.

    Are you aware the SFBARF’s tumblr has articles on doing away with Rent Control, while also opposing inclusionary housing programs, AND subsidized housing? I’m going to bet you’re not.

    You don’t actually have the first clue what the organization stands for, because they don’t stand for anything logically consistent. As I said, they’re not legit.

  4. Can you link me to the slate card, and City Hall rallies in the Bay Area district Sonja can actually vote in?

    No, apparently the Alameda County Democratic central committee elections aren’t as controversial this year. But SFBARF does indeed do a lot of advocacy in the East Bay; see housing affordability emergency in Oakland and Berkeley, MTC-ABAG merger, and support for many individual projects and other issues in Oakland.

    Only a residence gets a vote, for very practical reasons.

    True, residents have the right to vote on how their tax dollars are spent. But I think that compassionate citizens have a responsibility to also listen to the commuters and neighbors whom their vote affects.

    Not in My backyard.
    Yes…. in YOUR backyard.

    See the problem there?

    Again, SFBARF does advocate more housing construction to reduce displacement from Lafayette to Oakland to Sunnyvale too.

    Bay Area suburbs are some of the most affluent communities in the region, so your “Inequality” talk is inappropriate.

    Oakland (where Sonja lives) is poorer than San Francisco. Silicon Valley exports their housing problems to San Francisco, and San Francisco exports its housing problems to the East Bay.

    I’ll ask you again, what’s constructive about a Renters organization founded with a stated goal of divineness between tenant and affordable housing groups?

    Thanks for the link to SFBARF’s first fund raising deck from Dec 2014. In a discussion about that presentation in Oct 2015, Sonja admitted that she was wrong to blame all nonprofit housing developers; only the ones that are “straight NIMBYs.”

    Because SFBARF conducts most of their affairs in the open, we are able to criticize them when they are wrong (as we do with 48hills). And they are wrong from time to time. But again, I think being sincere but wrong is entirely different from being illegitimate.

  5. Progressives blow their wads conniving and backstabbing for DCCC and Board seats.

    Occasionally if you start to forget about them, they’ll end up at the State level.

  6. ” it deals with issues across the Bay Area”

    Can you link me to the slate card, and City Hall rallies in the Bay Area district Sonja can actually vote in?

    Only a residence gets a vote, for very practical reasons.

    Not in My backyard.
    Yes…. in YOUR backyard.

    See the problem there?

    Bay Area suburbs are some of the most affluent communities in the region, so your “Inequality” talk is inappropriate.

    I’ll ask you again, what’s constructive about a Renters organization founded with a stated goal of divineness between Rent Control Tenant advocates and Affordable Housing organizations?

  7. Is it all a prank to you?

    All your group talks about is upzoning, assessments, regulations, taxes, replacing single family homes, neighborhood busting, taking away property rights, etc. Your plans hinge on displacing natives, the middle class property owners, and those old people your group can’t hide their disdain for – as a direct result of development. You’re for development the way you’re for renters – to promote divineness. To be a shit disturber. That’s the appeal to you. And a job.

    How does it go? “No suburbs in San Francisco”, but “yes to every suburban promenade, and development mall with ground floor for formula retail”. You can’t even keep your schtick straight.

  8. Right, who wouldn’t expect that Hobo Catsuit is the official SFBARF and SFYimby sock puppet account?

  9. She’s misrepresenting that she’s runs a San Francisco community group. SFYimby for example? Slate cards focused on SF elections for example, and a voter rally at City Hall, have implications. It doesn’t help her credibility if she can’t vote in the voter block she claims to represent.

    No, I don’t think Sonja Trauss has misrepresented the San Francisco Bay Area Renters’ Federation; it deals with issues across the Bay Area and especially the urban core. Not sure about the SFYimby name though; I think she is using it for a coalition of organizations in the San Francisco area (as opposed to other metro areas).

    It doesn’t help her credibility if she can’t vote in the voter block she claims to represent. This is not a regional election.

    Yes, you’re right that only residents of the county can vote in the county central committee election. But the housing shortage is a regional issue. And I don’t think it’s wrong for an individual to rally voters in an election that affects her even though she can’t vote in it. (Here’s another example of non-voters encouraging voters.)

    If that makes any of you feel slighted, cry me a river.

    I take issue with the use of the term “outsiders” to describe people who live a BART ride away (although I myself live in SF). Hyperlocal boundaries are often used to defend inequality.

    Forget disagreements, I don’t think SFBARF followers can keep a story straight. I’ve quoted one of the groups goals, and you’re still confused, and didn’t recognize it as being from SFBARF’s own materials. You don’t even know what Sonja Trauss wants.

    You provided an unclear quote but no context. Though I occasionally disagree with what Sonja Trauss writes, her writing has generally been consistent and progressive.

    What’s an Anarchist bleeding heart Libertarian? What the hell is an “Anarchic Do-ocracy” even mean, I mean besides an admission that she’s basically just a shit disturber poser?

    It means she doesn’t say no to volunteers, even ones who are a bit unstable. It also means she has a sense of humor.

    SFBARF is not legit.

    I disagree. From all I have read, Sonja honestly and transparently believes in her goal of preventing displacement, which is why her mailing list is open for the public to criticize. Similarly, I think Tim Redmond honestly believes that his favored policies prevent displacement, as evidenced by his uncensored comment section and fights for the truth (except for occasional lapses such as in this article). So how could they disagree so much on the issue of housing economics? The lazy thing to do would be to dismiss one as having dishonest motives, but I don’t think that is the case with either. I think their differences are primarily in their models of how the housing market works. And when people have disagreements about the facts, the honest thing to do is for each side to bring all their data and respectful arguments and make their case.

  10. She’s misrepresenting that she’s runs a San Francisco community group. SFYimby for example? Slate cards focused on SF elections for example, and a voter rally at City Hall, have implications. It doesn’t help her credibility if she can’t vote in the voter block she claims to represent. This is not a regional election. This is not a Statewide, or National election. The DCCC is a very specific district election. And she wash’t displaced, so that’s the not the reason.

    If that makes any of you feel slighted, cry me a river.

    Forget disagreements, I don’t think SFBARF followers can keep a story straight. I’ve quoted one of the groups goals, and you’re still confused, and didn’t recognize it as being from SFBARF’s own materials. You don’t even know what Sonja Trauss wants. What’s an Anarchist bleeding heart Libertarian? What the hell is an “Anarchic Do-ocracy” even mean, I mean besides an admission that she’s basically just a shit disturber poser?

    SFBARF is not legit.

  11. If you identified me, then I identified myself. You didn’t figure out anything secret, you are articulated something obvious.

  12. If I paid any more attention, I’d be catching you were participating in discussions about SFBARF without identifying yourself.

    San Francisco isn’t full. People rent here every day. Wouldn’t that be better than being an outsider, pushing a slate card, trying to meddle in local district elections you can’t vote in?

  13. Does Sonja Trauss commit voter fraud and vote in San Francisco elections?

    There is no indication or even accusation (other than yours right here) that she intends to vote in San Francisco while living in Oakland. But it is not wrong to organize voters outside your city, any more than it is wrong to phone bank for Bernie Sanders from an adjacent state. The housing shortage in San Francisco causes displacement to and from Oakland too. The housing shortage is a regional problem that is worsened by local selfishness, and disparaging people who live within an hour away by BART as “outsiders” is unhelpful.

    SFBARF’s supposed platform is so convoluted, there’s no way it’s “membership”, mostly of of out of towners, even know what they’re standing with. You sure didn’t.

    Yes, the liberals routinely have disagreements with the libertarians on the mailing list. The group is a big tent united only by the mission: “Reduce displacement in the Bay Area by increasing the stock of available housing.”

    I quoted the organizations founder almost verbatim on her goal of creating a wedge between rent control supporters vs. affordability advocates. What does that tell you?

    I’m still not sure which issue you are referring to.

    Single family homes are owned and rented by residents of San Francisco. Displacing them would be bad. bad. Displacement by up zoning neighborhoods is a bad goal, and they are starting with previously diverse and affordable areas first.

    It sounds like you have a disagreement about how the housing market works. It’s fine to defend your own position and disagree. but that is entirely unrelated to your original claim that SFBARF is “not legit.”

  14. Of course I’m not. I live in Oakland. San Francisco was full. I feel like you’re not paying attention or something.

  15. Oh, and Sonja – Will you address if you’re planning to cast a DCCC vote on a San Francisco ballot?

  16. I’m well aware, but like minority flight, reverse white flight, or reverse gentrification, we have to consider the goals of a strategy. Pro Urban Renewal groups are testing the language to indicate this, and if not race, this is certainly based on class, and age. I do suspect this is a modern form of Blockbusting or reverse Blockbusting, though I obviously don’t have this theory pinpointed yet.

  17. I didn’t say he wrote the thing. I was mostly asking him what he thought about the mailer that said he would continue to be a supervisor without any compensation. I find it highly unlikely that he didn’t get the mailer and have a chance to think about the implications of a corporate-backed “progress” PAC telling voters that he would forgo his salary, benefits and pension.

  18. the idea of a progressive machine is laughable at best. the “progressives” couldn’t get it together to run against a drug-addled, wife screwing Newsom in 2007, put up the joke candidacy of Avalos in 2011, and wimped out against what turned out to be an unpopular Lee in 2015. Some “machine”

    For those of us who don’t register with any party, maybe it’s time we ask the parties to repay the city the entire cost of running these elections for what is essentially a private matter amongst members of one party. Then at least taxpayers wouldn’t be paying for this nonsense.

  19. Good piece for once. But calling London Breed ‘conservative’ is riduculous ‘nonsense.” Perhaps compared to you and David Campos, but make that clear. And if you think London is a serious conservative, you really need to get out more often.

  20. Does Sonja Trauss commit voter fraud and vote in San Francisco elections?

    She’s an Oakland resident who can’t legally vote for the SAN FRANCISCO Democratic County Central Committee, and yet issued a voter slate card and planned a rally at our City Hall polling place, the day voting opened.

    She didn’t issue a voter recommendation for Metropolitan Greater Oakland Democratic Club where she can vote, or the Democratic Party Alameda.

    The group was founded by an outsider. A non-resident of San Francisco. It’s not snobbery to point this out, it’s a fact. It’s also not normal for people to relocate to the East Bay, and within years, intertwine themselves into one of our most esoteric elections, and the group has already been linked to voter fraud.

    SFBARF’s supposed platform is so convoluted, there’s no way it’s “membership”, mostly of of out of towners, even know what they’re standing with. You sure didn’t.

    I quoted the organizations founder almost verbatim on her goal of creating a wedge between rent control supporters vs. affordability advocates. What does that tell you?

    Single family homes are owned and rented by residents of San Francisco. Displacement by up zoning neighborhoods is the goal, and they are starting with previously diverse and affordable areas first.

  21. I mean, the mailer is sent out by an IE, so by definition the candidates aren’t and can’t be involved with the mailers at all. That’s campaign finance law.

  22. Post the back of the mailer that contains the disclaimer. This article has 3 pictures of the front, 0 pictures of the back. 0 pictures of the disclaimer. How are readers supposed to know you’re not lying or confused about the mailer’s funders? The post is about transparency and public records but the post itself is not transparent.

    Thanks

  23. They’re not legit

    By what criteria?

    Can their figurehead even legally vote in this election?

    No, the founder lives in Oakland according to the nytimes article. But as you may know, our affordability crisis is regional, as is the group’s mission (“San Francisco Bay Area Renters’ Federation”).

    Goals of disrupting the alliances between rent control advocates and low cost housing advocates suggests they’re anti-tenant-provocateurs.

    What issue are you referring to? I have seen them discuss a wedge issue to split progressives from NIMBYs (AHBP) (and Tim Redmond subsequently chose NIMBY), but I haven’t seen any indication that they wish to split rent control advocates from nonprofit housing advocates.

    Focusing on single family home neighborhoods suggests they’re pro-displacement.

    Which issue are your referring to and how does it relate to displacement? Single-family homes and condos don’t even qualify under rent control, so displacing a renter of a single-family house is already as easy as massively increasing the rent when the lease is up.

    The fact is that SFBARF speaks for a population that the progressives ignore (generally young renters who haven’t won the housing lottery). True, some of their tactics have been questionable. But it is narrow-minded to dismiss them out-of-hand.

  24. Who is the developer who gave the reform slate $100K? How is it being spent? So far I’ve seen two mailers on behalf of the developer/real estate slate, nothing from the reformers.

  25. Its just funny watching “progressives” claim they can make SF affordable when the basic economics of the system dictate the high prices. Are you going to in fill the bay to build new housing? You have no space, and the very people complaining about prices are the same ones will indeed stand in the way of any construction and expansion on the grounds of environmental impacts.
    It’s an over crowded city filled with low density one to two story housing, and that just isn’t going to change, let alone when the same “progressives” enjoy pushing countless costly social programs which again, increase the cost of living for everyone.

  26. I’m sure the supermarket will be an improvement over what’s there now. (though I think that one is independently owned)

    I was mentioning Westlake as a source of culture. It wasn’t meant to be flattering.

    I don’t see public housing phased out, they’re just not developing more of it. Instead they’ll create more towers then fill the ones nobody wants with Section 8’s, I guess.

  27. Hey Tim, you call out one poor guy for contributing $250, just because he works for Facebook. Even for you this is ridiculous? How come no mention of people that are funding the Reform slate, like the developer who’s donated $100,000? Oh right, so it’s OK to take real estate money as long as you agree with Tim Redmond?

  28. Not on Peskin, he just seems like he’s been around that long.
    On height limitations, etc. yes you’re correct.

  29. To be fair, he won Telegraph Hill in past elections, as did his surrogate Chiu.

    I think Chinatown won his this last round. Though interesting to note that Rose Pak wanted Wu, who is on this list as Peskin’s machine.

    1,500 votes is how Supervisor elections are won and lost. Actually, that’s a lot. Sometimes it’s 250 votes difference.

    I’m interested to see if Peskin campaigns again. I see 2 candidates listed as challengers already, and from what I can tell, they’re young outsiders who don’t even know who Peskin is, let alone find him intimidating. It’s Peskin’s worst nightmare.

  30. A supermarket is planned, who it will be is anyone’s guess.

    Westlake is a different story, different city and county.

    Buckingham way (north UPN) is planned to be raised, as well in the near future for new housing and extending the campus.

    As far as public housing goes, it’s been getting phased out by the new market idea of “affordable housing”. So we shall see what comes of it.

  31. Peskin coordinated a takeover of the DCCC in 2007 as he was about to be termed out.

    At the time the DCCC endorsement was synonymous with electoral victory but that relationship fell apart on his watch. There was one incident where he used DCCC funds against Newsom and, when caught, responded with his classic petulant attitude.

    If Peskin was put in charge of Facebook or Amazon they would be out of business in 6 months…he’s that lame. Good luck with him.

  32. Give that developers and anti-anything activists have so much power, I’m good with voters having a say. But in an ideal world, you are right.

  33. Peskin couldn’t carry Telegraph Hill, where they know him best.

    He cleaned up in the neighborhood surrounding 8 Washington, where he is regarded as the best hope of keeping their swimming pool and tennis courts. Peskin won by 1,500 votes and 1,200 of them came from that neighborhood. Without that and the tantrum that Rose Pak threw because she didn’t like the race of the person that Ed Lee appointed D3 would have been a close contest between a weak newbie and a man with 16 years of name recognition.

    I’m not worried about Mayor Peskin…the more people see of him, the more visceral the negative reaction is. Plus he made all those promises about creating an affordable city that were total BS.

  34. I was talking about Westlake + Stonestown. Replacing the strip mall is a good thing, providing they get to keep a supermarket.

    Trading in 2 story townhouses for condos is interesting. Didn’t we trade tower projects in for public housing townhouses?

  35. The old strip mall will be raised, replaced with mix use buildings. Most of those old dwellings the two story condo apartments (minus the towers) will also be raised and replaced.

    Certain sections of the development will have the college village vibe.

  36. Woah there, let’s not mistake Peskin’s bullish support in district elections for a vote of confidence from the city. I also think the idea that the DCC was taken over by real estate interests is sensationalism too.

    You are right about the rest, but the voters are easily manipulated, and unless absentee votes flood the ballots, I’m not sure we know how similar measures would go with these sociopathic groups running around.

  37. “This statement is simply not true. At least one tenant, anti-eviction, anti-displacement group, SFBARF”

    They’re not legit.

    Can their figurehead even legally vote in this election?

    Goals of disrupting the alliances between rent control advocates and low cost housing advocates suggests they’re anti-tenant provocateurs.

    Focusing on single family home neighborhoods suggests they’re pro-displacement.

  38. Upgrading the buildings will not save it from depending on two nearby malls for some culture.

  39. In election season, the political ads are awful, and the 48hills articles are cringeworthy as well. While Tim Redmond brings up some good points, it’s sad that his articles also need disclaimers of their own..

    None of the targets are current elected officials who took any votes at all on any policy measures related to housing.

    Very careful choice of qualifiers! Cindy Wu voted in favor of interim controls but is appointed, not elected, to the Planning Commission. And the two targets who actually are on the DCCC—Petra DeJesus and Hene Kelly—did vote to endorse 2015 Prop I as members of this committee, which is elected but not official. But I agree that the mailer is deceptive since most of the targets are not incumbent.

    So are the conservative candidates with high name recognition, like Scott Wiener and London Breed.

    Oh, Tim Redmond has unilaterally decided to call his political opponents “conservatives” instead of “moderates” now? Tim’s language is becoming more desperate and less accurate.

    Every single legitimate tenant, anti-eviction, and anti-displacement group supported Prop. I.

    This statement is simply not true. At least one tenant, anti-eviction, anti-displacement group, SFBARF, opposed Prop I. Wishing they would go away does not make them disappear. Some other tenant groups took no position, such as Tenants Together, as well as any 501c(3) nonprofit.

  40. This story does a good job of illustrating a significant loophole in SF’s campaign finance disclosure laws.

    Progress San Francisco and similar independent exependiture groups should be required to report the contributions they receive with the Ethics Commission. That they don’t obscures a crucial element of the SF’s pay to play political game.

    The Ethics Commission should immediately ask the Board of Supervisors to fix this problem and to make the change retroactive.

  41. Above and beyond any verbiage, the mailer provides a valuable service by identifying the candidates aligned with Peskin so that people can vote against them.

    Re: “None of the targets are current elected officials who took any votes at all on any policy measures related to housing.”

    Yeah. Cindy Wu has been on the Planning Commission for 4 years and most certainly has cast significant votes on housing policy.

    Tim Redmond is getting better at printing misleading material. In this case he prefaces it with ‘elected officials’ so it is technically true while still being effectively misleading.

    But he is great at railing over the sleaze of other people.

  42. This same “progress” group sent a mailer a couple weeks ago that insisted all the candidates they support “will work for free,” including Breed, Wiener and Chiu.

    As he was leaving the bike to work rally yesterday, I asked Wiener if it’s really true that he will work for free. I suggested either he would work without salary, benefits and pension, or the organization that produced the mailer is pretty much out of touch with Wiener as a candidate. He feigned ignorance of the whole event.

  43. “It’s like saying Uber is a bad thing.,,and for now it’s reducing the amount of cars people are buying.”

    Can’t let that one go. Uber (and the others) have added tens of thousands of cars to our streets, and the leasing/purchasing of new vehicles has skyrocketed to the point where a whole new market has opened to target these amateur drivers.

  44. Let’s see – the real estate industry’s take over of the DCC isn’t an issue, but when someone else tries to take it back, it’s a take over.

    And the NONSENSE that Peskin is who got us into this mess is ridiculous. And even if he did have a hand in the no-build attitudes, he’s won three elections and two of those had well-funded opposition.

    What you really don’t like is that a majority of San Franciscans city-wide have voted for restrict height limits at least 4 times, voted to limit commercial realestate growth at least once, and a majority of District 3 voters have voted for Peskin three times.

    It is you who is out of touch with San Francisco voters. When Peskin becomes mayor, you may want to consider moving elsewhere.

  45. Oh yawn. Is that the density/urbanization sing song of the month?

    Park Merced are lower middle class slums, and glorified student housing. Nice they exist, but not a model for destroying a great city.

    The Board of Supervisors, idiots they may be, are not the reason Muni isn’t punishing people by reducing services for your convenience.

  46. The Peskin machine exists. Don’t insult us.

    The use of the Guy Fawkes mask is obnoxious though.
    What a confused clusterf*ck of self interests on both sides.

  47. You assume the voters are naive and have a short memory, ofcourse Peskin has a political machine he orchestrated a take over of DCC 8ish years ago, and is trying again.Peskin represents all that is bad in SF politics, his stuckist attitude and no build policies are what got.us here today.

  48. San Francisco’s problem isn’t development, it’s how single family home take all the space when you could have 5 story high buildings with 5-10 more apartments. That’s what they’re doing in Park Merced!! Going from 10,000 to 30,000 residents. How is that bad. The less multiple story buildings, the more rich people, the more stupid policies. It’s like saying Uber is a bad thing. It’s not perfect, but it will improve, and for now it’s reducing the amount of cars people are buying. Because with the people on the board of supervisors, we have buses that stop every block and it takes an hour to go from the excelsior to downtown… So yes to high buildings everywhere, Yes to Uber to solve transportation problems American politician are so incapable of solving. Move out if you hate living in a city that looks like one, not a dorm with nice views.

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