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Home Featured Denounce the Yimby disruption: An open letter to Sen. Wiener

Denounce the Yimby disruption: An open letter to Sen. Wiener

Community leaders ask author of SB 827 to distance himself from the Yimbys who shouted down a community coalition trying to hold a peaceful rally

Dear Senator Wiener:

On April 4, on the steps of San Franciscos City Hall, we and other representatives from more than 40 San Francisco community organizations joined together for a lawful and fully permitted press conference to express concerns regarding the negative impacts of SB 827. 

Our speakers included representatives from across the city including the Mission, Excelsior, Chinatown, Western Addition, the Northside and Westside. We included tenants, homeowners, seniors, environmentalists, and communities of color. Our intention was to raise concerns that SB 827 would exacerbate displacement, undermine our affordable housing policies, and strain our overburdened transit system. We particularly sought to bring to public awareness that SB 827 would eliminate the opportunity for the voices of disadvantaged communities to impact policies that have a direct and immediate impact on their lives.

But we were denied the opportunity to speak by the deliberate, concerted, and continuous disruptive actions of the Yimby organization which is alsothe sponsor of SB 827

As has been described in media accounts including the San Francisco Examiner,  a Yimby contingent including leadership of the national and state organization, shouted down our speakers and disrupted the event to the point no one, including the assembled reporters, could hear our speakers.  As a direct and foreseeable consequence of the Yimby action the press coverage of the event has centered on the disruption and not the content of our messages.     

As the principal author of SB 827 and a close collaborator with the local and state Yimby organization locally we ask you to condemn all Yimby networks’ efforts to suppress public critique of this legislation.  It is not enough, as Yimby spokespeople have assured, to change their future disruptive actions to not interrupt speakers if they are low income people of color.” The Yimby organization needs to cease silencing critique by any and all people. 

We believe that this position should extend to the consideration of SB 827 itself.   It is no coincidence that the sponsors of SB 827 sought to deny our communities the ability to raise concerns about a bill that would institutionalize the suppression of community voices, participation, and dialog.  

Yimbys shout down a rally against SB 827

As written SB 827 is a deeply divisive and disrespectful proposal.   As has been noted by community organizations in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and throughout California, SB 827 will undo the efforts of hundreds if not thousands of community organizations to improve the livability, sustainability, and affordability of their neighborhoods. Exclusionary practices that suppress the development of truly inclusionary housing need to be challenged. But it is fundamentally wrong to then conclude that all community plans are exclusionary and should be overridden by state law. Yet that was the claim of the Yimby chants interrupting our press conference and also the underlying assumption of the legislation itself.

For all these reasons we demand that you to denounce Yimby disruptive practices and we ask you to put SB 827 on hold until there is the room for the dialog that all our communities deserve


Deepa Varma

Fred Sherburn Zimmer

Wing Hoo Leung

Charles Dupigny

Gus Hernandez

Ozzie Rohm

Becky Evans


  1. Oh sweetie, isn’t that thoughtful of you. In your state of advanced delirium (and perhaps senility?), you’re dreaming about the Ohio suburbs you’ve heard about on the wireless.

    We I’ll remember you when you’re gone. But you will not be missed.

    Thanks for taking time out of your day at the nursing home to think of little old me and the other 40 million Californians who can’t wait to be rid of you.


  2. I’d suggest you get lame insurance, but you are too high risk. If I had to hazzard a guess you are from the suburbs of Dayton. Sorry. Again you YIMBYs are changing nothing but the pitch of your whining. Adios. Goodbye. Bridge leaving SF is the free direction

  3. Poor thing. You know that after we freed the slaves, we enacted civil rights legislation and did away with debtors’ prisons? There’s so much history for you to catch up on! If only you can tear yourself away from trying to turn SF into the village you founded centuries ago.

    Sorry to hear you’re standing by the side of 101 waving your hankie in the hopes of someone seeing you. Perhaps the cops will see you and redirect you to a navigation center. These days, people take BART to the airport. That’s what we do when we want to leave, we don’t wave hankies like a two bit hooker hoping for a trucker to pull over. Not that I’m judging your lifestyle choices.

    As a vegetarian who has never owned a car, I can sense you’re looking for a place that would support a different lifestyle. I would suggest Reno or maybe even Winnemuca. You may have passed through if/when you came through on the Oregon trail.

    It’s so cute that when you 300 year olds try to use hashtags! #blessyourlittleheart

  4. Ya putz. You YIMBYs ain’t making change. You’re a bunch a wannabe blowhards… nothing new that hasn’t been seen before in SF. We are all enjoying watching your leader have public conniptions and look forward to her flameout campaign. YIMBYs should pay the money they still owe for the failed signature campaign and then call an Uber you love so much for a ride to SFO. West side republicans and mission anarchists — WE will all stand on the side of 101 and wave goodbye hankies at all 1262 of you. The only changes you brought to SF are bacon maple donuts and those too are for shit.

  5. You may not know this, but Texas, like Alta California, are now part of the United States.

    Did you come with Columbus? You may not like the changes we’re making, but, like being slavery, you’ll need to adjust. It’s for your own good.

  6. Earn what? I paid off my house in SF under a 30-year loan just last year. Are you still getting your leaches removed at the barber shop?

  7. WOW! “What goes around comes around.” Where is your outraage when conservitive seakers are shouted down by your extreme left-wing friends? Now that the shoe is on the other foot hipocrites like you say it’s not OK to shout down the other side. BTW, I DO NOT support SB827.

  8. Interesting family history, thanks. Blacks moved INVOLUNTARILY out of their neighborhood, The Haight, in the 1960s when the hippies flooded in. Should we make Haight-Ashbury a permanent African-American heritage site, too?

  9. My mother grew up on Valley Street in the 1920’s. the Irish and Italian American families of the pre-WWII Mission District moved out VOLUNTARILY to the suburbs after the War, part of the national suburban flight of that era. that wasn’t “displacement,” they had the choice to let their community in the City fade away. even North Beach. Latinos and African Americans filled in some of the emptied neighborhoods – including the Mission and Fillmore of course. but the City’s total population still steadily declined from 1945 to 1980. then finally us Boomers moving here reversed that trend along with continued international migration, including China for the first time in significant numbers after 100 years of exclusion.

  10. I’m against SB827 and against the flakes that are against it. And, as for “affordable” housing you can all go to hell. You damn liberals screw up everything. Get off the public gravy train you lazy bastards

  11. Let’s be honest here: you and the other NIMBYs are all about 300 years old, which gives you the right to keep SF in the state of perpetual anachronism, as the Lord intended.

    You obviously pre-date Columbus AND that YIMBY whippersnapper Portolá, who NEVER should have been permitted to build the Presidio (the traffic!!!).

    How could you not survive people who moved here 20 years ago and are about 280 years younger than you? You’ll obviously prevail.

  12. Thank you virtuous suburbanite daddy lecturer. When we need the incoherent voice of self-important, self-anointed righteousness, we know where to look. That’s such a comfort.

  13. And it was an Irish-American community before it was Latino. El cambio occurre, muchacho. No le puede terminar. Se nacee, se crie, y se muere. Entiende ahorita?

  14. Well supply and demand applies to jobs just as much as it does the housing market. Senior software developers make a ton of cash because there aren’t that many people in the labor pool able to do what they do. They are concentrated here, and many moved here to work as a developer, and so maybe that skews our perception, but it is still a very niche job that takes a certain knack to do well. Over time, especially as children learn to code, we’ll see their salaries begin to even out a bit more.

    I’m not sure what your ideal industry would be where tons of jobs flood to the area but income disparity is lessened. I’m also not sure how that would be encouraged. That would require a ridiculous amount of micromanagement on behalf of the local government. All of these tech companies rely on the highly paid engineers as they literally make the products. The marketing teams promote what they do, the admin staff supports them, etc. etc. If the highly paid software dev wasn’t here but was in, say, Boise instead, all the other jobs would go with them. I know too many people who grew up in the Bay who work for tech companies (who are not developers) to believe they’d be better off if they never came here.

    So, build houses for them and continue to build housing until everyone is housed. The can only build so much “luxury” before more modest spaces can become available. And I’d say a 400sq ft apartment is modest, and the only reason it is “luxury” today is because of scarcity.

  15. I agree we shouldn’t single out “the techies”. It’s an issue of math, not of culture. We should address income disparity, wherever it may come from. A financial services company where people earn $150K is not “techie”, but it has more of a negative impact on housing prices than a small web design shop where people earn well under 100K.

    “If we make their jobs go away, how many other jobs go away with it?”
    I don’t think jobs will go away just like that. We should preferentially encourage new jobs to come from industries which don’t have such a wide income disparity.

  16. Mr. Nestel: Please refrain from using sexist language (“cupcake”) toward myself and fellow commenters. Meant to demean others, it actually demeans you.

  17. Thank you for sharing! 🙂 Sounds like you have led an interesting and engaged existence!

  18. Well, first off, notice I do not engage with him. In fact, I increasingly just ignore his ignorant rants, but I do occasionally post the facts in case someone has not seen them. He knows he is lying, and tries to imagine that he is upsetting me. Actually, it is kind of amusing. Back in the late 70s I had been a journalism major. I took some time off from college, and during that time, I became engaged. I decided to not return to school (I also had learned that there were more journalism students that jobs, both open and occupied) and realized I was wasting my time. But, I did pick up work as a stringer for UPI. It gave me a little extra money, even though, by then, I was working in public relations work for an arts group. Sort of a sideline for me. I covered some interesting stories. I also picked up a bit doing other things. But I decided to stop as I did have a full time job. I eventually became a full time homemaker and raised my daughter. And I became more involved with computers, which I had become interested in while I was in school. I wound up working as a consultant and then as a programmer for a local company. All of this was before UPI was bought by the Moonies. In fact, I was not even really aware of that until recently. UPI had pretty much faded away, and AP became pretty much a monopoly. And I have left out one small detail that made it fun watching Idiot Boy trying to track some stuff down. I was a photojournalism stringer, not a writer. I did some writing as well, and other things, but for UPI i was a photographer.

  19. wait what? You do realize its only so bad because it is literally mostly 2 lanes going each way, not to mention the ton of construction going on off of El Camino? Especially past Menlo Park? Also, you do realize there are more roads than El Camino? Some of which I don’t plan to elaborate on cuz selfish.

  20. Why did you have to take offense instead of dialogue about the actual solutions and options as advocated by Flight?

  21. government shrinkage except when it comes to cops, and the army, US presence outside of US territory. GTFOH. I can actually believe all the closeted conservatives who up-voted you – the true protectionists are the privileged class.

  22. They want the poors to move where the contamination is and they will take their old residences.

  23. In Washington state the development has solved the traffic problems.. as told by my friend who it takes an hour and a half to get home when his commute used to be 30 mins.

  24. Why even engage with these nut cases? It makes them and everyone else think anything they say is somehow legitimate.

    Just because a child wants to engage in the adult conversation the adults are having doesn’t mean we have to acknowledge them.

  25. The people who support the YIMBY’s and/or in this bill… love their insight/advice in this post: “Grow up”, inference to oppression eyeroll, Free Speech… (Might add more later, theres a lot of shite to comb through) closeted privileged Conservatives who now inhabit the 415 make me want to vomit.

  26. Ok, I concede. The senior software developer is certainly a very high paying career, and there are definitely a lot of them. They seem to be really the only ones with a future here, beside the usual high earners like lawyers, doctors, upper management, etc. So they’re the new lawyer or 80’s style Wall Street guy. I still don’t see the point in singling them out or trying to find a way to combat them via any legislature or policy. I just see a lot of unfair rhetoric against “the techies” and almost all of the techies I know are not senior software developers and are not doing well due to high rents.

    So the senior software devs making north of $120k may be the line between the haves and have nots around here. If we make their jobs go away, how many other jobs go away with it? A senior software dev making $120k also has a non senior dev underneath. Then a support engineer. Then an IT desk. Then there’s middle management. Then there’s trainers. Then there’s admin staff. Then there’s building staff (security, cafeteria, maintenance). Etc.

    The prices have adjusted to the majority of what renters are willing to pay is a very true statement. Technically, market rate is affordable to someone. However, I know and have known too many people who have double or tripled up in studios when they first moved here. Too many living room “conversions” into double rooms. Landlords get that because there’s nothing else available.

  27. Build more housing…after the Ayn Rand YIMBYs leave. SF ran JimJones off… chase this carpetbagger cult out too

  28. Well, thanks. I don’t mind arguing if I learn new things.

    Salaries: SF Public school salaries start at 55K. 5 years later it’s up to 58K. With 60 units of additional training you’re up to 67K, and after 15 years you’re up to 84K. 70K is a good median.

    Developer salaries depend on where they work, but the big companies (Google, Facebook, Apple) start you off well above $100K base salary, plus bonuses and stock options. After 5 years, the same Google engineer will earn twice as much as the teacher, and by the time they are both 40 years old, mid-career, and want to settle down, the teacher is making 84K and the dev is making $200K. You can’t just say that the person earning twice as much as the other is in the same situation. Would you be in the same situation if your income were doubled, or halved?

    Let’s get to the original point, which is, how does this range in salaries affect rents?

    A $120K engineer makes would be willing to pay a about 30% of his salary for a one bedroom, pleasant and not luxurious accommodations when you’re in your late 20s. That comes to $3300/month, which is indeed about the going rate for a SF one-bedroom: the prices have adjusted to what the majority of new renters are willing to pay.

    But if you’re a teacher making 70K, or $4400/month after taxes, you’ll have to live with roommates. If you’re a 40-yo teacher you’ll make $5k/month, and will be able to rent a studio, but won’t be able to save anything. If you’re a school bus driver making $40K, or $2700/month, you’ll have to commute from elsewhere. The prices won’t come down for you, as long as there are people wiling to pay twice as much as you can.

  29. Rar rar rar! If I remember right, you’re the one who thinks unlimited Ubers and Lyfts are a positive thing. Not interested.

  30. Y’all needs another hunk of tabacky chaw to suck on. And git yer trailer park shed cleaned up too, y’all, hear?

  31. You always have thoughtful replies, thanks for engaging in a meaningful manner.

    Regarding the teacher versus developer thing, yes, there is inequality in that scenario, but in the grand scheme of things I’d argue they’re both in the same boat when we look at the bigger picture. You’re also looking at the base salary for a teacher versus as senior level software developer. The gap between the two narrows quite a bit when we talk about a 5 year teacher and a 5 year developer, or entry level vs entry level. Anyway, prospects for both camps are very bleak regardless. So the teacher would pay 50% toward rent, the dev 35%. The extra cash a month the dev is able to save would allow for a down payment on a 2BR house in about 10 years of work, the teacher 15. Both are effectively impossible.

    Again, throw in some student loans to eat up both group’s savings and how far away are we from splitting hairs? Is it really worth hobbling the conversation, creating a divide (techies vs everyone else), when we’re basically all just fighting for crumbs? I have friends that work in tech, I have friends that work for the schools. They both have the same problems.

  32. People can refinance, and people can take home equity loans, but the money ultimately needs to come from somewhere. Retired people often live in properties which they could not possibly afford, on quite a meager income.

    In any case, my point had to do with people of disparate incomes competing in the rental market. Obviously that does not include people who own their homes. The inequality I’m talking about is when a $70K/yr teacher is competing for an apartment with several $140K/yr software developers.

  33. I’ve read a lot of editor Tim Redmond’s writing over the years in the Bay Guardian and elsewhere. As far as I can tell, he’s never seen a housing development he likes. He apparently feels they all should have stopped the day after he moved into San Francisco.
    He’s entitled to that misguided position. But this demand that Wiener “denounce” YIMBYs strikes me as similar to the demands that Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton or other African-American politicians “disavow” Louis Farrakhan. Guilt by association.

  34. The need to be right? You are confusing racial discrimination and segregation with single-family zoning. Single-family zoning does not discriminate on the basis of race; people discriminate.

    The general definition of diversity is non-White, not limited to Blacks and Hispanics. Are Asians the new White? Before the War there were few Blacks. Chinese and other Asians were the targets of much of race discrimination. The restrictive covenants in neighborhoods like St. Francis Wood concerned mainly Chinese. It was a Chinese family in 1960 that sued to have St. Francis covenants ruled illegal. Ironically, a wealthy Black attorney was living in St. Francis Wood at the time.

    I arbitrarily selected 50% non-White as a benchmark for diversity. The fact that Forest Hill is 47.1% White compared to 41.2% for the City is not meaningful. It is hard to argue that a single family zoning discriminates on the basis of race if in single family zoned areas the majority are not White.

    In San Francisco, segregated is often thought of as 60% or more of any one race. Very often people self-segregate. Neighborhoods that are over 60% White are 15% single-family on average and 30% in buildings with 5 to 19 units on average, 13% in buildings with 20 or more units.

    Again, there are no absolutes but a matter of degree; there is no such thing as 100% for any one characteristic. The higher the percent of single family homes the lower percent of Whites. The census tracts with above average percent of single family homes are 20% percent White on average. That average includes above average White Seacliff. Seacliff is not representative of the average single-family neighborhood.

    Census tracts don’t always conform to neighborhood boundaries. The realtors consider Silver Terrace its own neighborhood surrounded by the Bayview. The City planning notification includes it as part of the Bayview. Most think of it as the Bayview, like many think of West Portal as part of the Sunset. Realtors named my neighborhood Forest Hill Extension. Some of us still think of it as Laguna Honda Park. A rose by any other name!

    Most consider of anything south of Cesar Chavez and east of 101 as Bayview-Hunters Point. Within the Bayview are realtor subdivisions of Silver Terrace, Candlestick Point, and Hunters Point. Little Hollywood could be either the Bayview or Vis Valley, depending on who you ask. Not included in the real estate map is Portola Place, which realtors consider the Bayview. But what’s the point if nitpicking. Silver Terrance zoned mostly single family, is 75% to 80% single family and over 90% non-White. It is in the mostly minority southeast part of the City. Call it Bayview or not Bayview if you like. So what?

    Glen Park is 61% to 64% single-family. That percent is not in the top 25% of single family neighborhoods. If I include all census tracts with 60% and above single-family, the average White percent is still low at 24% non-Hispanic White. If I include all census tracts with 50% or more single-family the average is 26% White non-Hispanic.

    Bernal: I am also familiar with Bernal. I visited there very often as a child. I inherited a cottage there from my grandmother; I sold it. Bernal is 60% single family ranging from 36% to 88%. It is 47% White, ranging from 26% to 54% White. It is the northern part of Bernal where the Whites live. The part near St. Mary’s Park is only 26% White. If you add Blacks and Hispanics together Bernal has an above average percent, except the northeast part of Bernal. The St. Mary’s Park part is 45% either Black or Hispanic. But even if Bernal is included in the calculation, the percent of Whites in Single family areas on average is still low.

  35. The same reason why avocado farmers continue to farm avocados despite sometimes being able to sell them for $3, and sometimes having to sell them 4 for $5.

    Keep moving the goal post. Keep dodging my points.

    And if SB827 means they won’t invest, and therefore won’t build, then you win by default! Nothing gets built, right? Minimal impact.

  36. YIMBY question for today: “Why are developers and banks willing to invest in real estate if #SB827 will make rents go down?”

  37. 1. Irrelevant. I did not state anyone has called for the NIMBYs’ arrest.

    2. Wrong. There is no right for someone to be quiet while you are in a public space that others also have the same right be in. The “YIMBY’s” have a right to chant or disagree with the other protestors, and to be loud, if they choose. It does not matter if the other group claims to be “vulnerable” or not. You may claim the YIMBY’s were rude, but the First Amendment allows people to be rude.

    3. Irrelevant. Whether some other party allegedly lies or disparages others does not prevent you from writing an open letter criticizing a proposed piece of legislation.

  38. Sure, it can be used for building ten story mansions. Except ten story mansions aren’t really in demand right now, are they? Small, modest, affordable apartments are in demand and that’s what we will begin to see. The planning commission believes so as well. Keep in mind all new housing is “luxury” housing today not by quality, size, or amenity. The only thing luxurious about a 300 sq ft studio in Soma for $3000 a month is the fact that you’re in Soma and there’s nothing else to choose from.

    It must be nice to be in a position to say it isn’t about the money, @sfsquirrel:disqus said the same thing. Unfortunately, it IS about the money for the vast majority of people who are suffering under this affordability crisis.

    I love how it’s all about developer and landlord greed one minute, but then it’s “not about the money” when we run out of rebuttals against basic economic consensus.

  39. I understand that SB827 has no requirements to build apartments and can be used for building ten story mansions instead. Only in the Millennial world of “participation trophies” does everybody win all of the time. I am not going to trade the democratic rights of long term residents for the rights of few to kick them out of the neighborhood. It is not about money. It is about human decency and respecting our neighbors.

  40. Ok, let’s follow the real world:

    Owners want to build 8 story place, probably multiplying the amount of units times five. Tenants get relocation costs covered and if they are around in 3-5 years they get to move back in. Meanwhile, there are other new apartments opening up, because SB827 means there’s more vacancy, they can move into a different apartment in the meantime. The net result – they get to stay, they keep their rent controlled place, they get to move into a whole new apartment.

    Don’t think that’s true? Do you think landlords will try to skirt around that to get rid of the tenants? Do you think they should get a bigger payout? Do you think they should be guaranteed a place elsewhere for the same price during the entirety of construction? Then advocate for special protections on behalf of the tenants and everyone will be on board with you on this. Instead, you’re saying the other six stories of housing should go UNBUILT because your scenario MIGHT happen.

    Again, we can have stronger tenant protections AND more housing. Now is the time to make both happen.

  41. 1. No on is calling for the YIMBY protesters to be arrested.

    2. Interfering with the rights of others — which the YIMBYs were doing — is not protected by the Constitution. YIMBYs put their own rights and perceived rights before others, which is why so many people don’t like them. Shouting over representatives of vulnerable groups is not the same as shouting over public officials or other powerful figures. I know that YIMBYs don’t get that.

    3. There is no honest debate with YIMBYs who constantly lie and disparage those who disagree with them.

  42. So follow the logic. Owners wants to build an 8 story YIMBY arms apartments in place of 3 families rent controlled apartments. Tenants get notice that they must leave, get a small fee and if they are around in 3–5 years while the apartment is being built, they may move back in a special rent controlled apartment. “the poor door”. Meanwhile, the families life is turned upside down. After such upheaval who wants to rebuild their life a second time. The net result-people forced to relocate. We are not going to let YIMBYS destroy San Francisco and California.

  43. “The current developments in the pipeline wouldn’t be worth a peep in the newspapers of many other cities around the world.”

    This is very true, perspective is important. The amount of articles, meetings, debates, reviews, and public scrutiny surrounding developments as small as 50 units is ridiculous. But here everyone has an opinion, a concern. Even if you live several blocks away you can micromanage each new building that is even a twinkle in a developer’s eye.

    It’s the “too many cooks in the kitchen” problem at a massive scale.

  44. Very familiar with the map. Those areas see more housing. Yet somehow people will move away from those areas. Your logic does not make sense.

  45. “housing development goals implemented by the State, combined with regional governance to determine how to meet those state mandates” basically describes the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) process as it has existed since the 1980s.

    Of course, the fact that we’re still in a crisis means the process hasn’t worked as intended. Part of the problem is the methodology and regional politics around the RHNA process results in numbers that don’t reflect actual demand. The other problem is there really wasn’t any punishment for failing to meet RHNA quotas.

    Wiener attacked the latter problem with SB35 last year and is attacking the former with SB 828 this year. SB 827 is merely a third piece of the puzzle that says “when we allow development near transit, it can’t be restricted to low-density development”.

  46. I have a perfectly fine sense of subtlety and irony. I also find some people to not be worthy of such. Especially people who appeal to ignorant stereotypes. And again, there was nothing wrong with what Tim wrote. It was perfectly clear to anyone with basic reading skills.

  47. Looking at this comment board, I see nothing but sheer madness. Pretty sad to see folks misconstrue this bill, using those evil developers to play the role of the big bad oppressive boogeyman. Grow up. You live in one of the wealthiest and most diverse regions in the world, yet your thinking wants to cap things at Mill Valley-level. The current developments in the pipeline wouldn’t be worth a peep in the newspapers of many other cities around the world. The most shameful part is using these community organizations to try and validate a way of thinking that will ultimately hurt the very people said orgs represent.
    Truly disgusting.

  48. For the land value, yes.

    By your logic does that mean a single family home worth 2 million that gets turned into 30 apartment units, each apartment unit will be worth at least $2m each? Doesn’t make sense. We need more places for people to live.

  49. “Older homeowners may have equity in their homes, but that doesn’t translate to more spending power”

    This is not true at all. People refinance to pull out cash all the time and reinvest that. Or buy a Tesla. Having all that equity and an inflated home value to borrow against is a huge boon. Not that that is a bad thing, but when you combine that with most young people paying more than 40% of their income on rent then it’s pretty obvious where a huge portion of income inequality has come from. It’s not as severe in other parts of the country where the shortage hasn’t been as extreme and there’s no Prop 13 to incentivize homeowners to hold on to their homes until they die.

    Let’s mix in a historically slow and reactive minimum wage, maybe some college loan debt (at a $1 trillion bubble right now), a little bit of racism and sexism, and combine all of that with a truly dismal housing situation for everyone who did not purchase a property or sign a lease in a rent controlled apartment before 2011 and here’s our income gap!

  50. View in InCognito mode, private browsing mode, or whatever you browser of choice’s privacy mode is called. That gets around most paywalls including NYT, Economist, and local papers.

  51. These people are about as hysteric as Trump supporters. Like if Hillary got elected we’d all be in the throes of WWIII right now.

  52. “Forced relocation of millions” … Either supply a link or get psychiatric help because you are delusional and paranoid.

    So everyone is going to be pushed out of California and the entire state will filled with only millionaires? Where will these millionaires come from and are there even enough millionaires in the entire country to fill the even just the Bay?

    This is bordering on the Yogism “No one goes there anymore, it’s too crowded.”

  53. This is funny. You advocate for “improving” transit by blocking other forms of transit that aren’t SFMTA. You advocate for “tenant protections” by blocking other forms of housing that aren’t socialized.

    Do you advocate for anything that creates anything, or just stopping things you don’t like?

  54. I am going over your figures here and don’t really reach the same conclusions that you do. The fact that Noe Valley was working class and white in the 50s and is still white 60 years later is evidence of racial segregation to me, not a lack of it. Especially in a city that has become majority minority and the fact that there is a largely Latino neighborhood adjacent. There are thousands of segregated white communities in the US, mostly in The South with Black majority communities nearby. That is evidence of racist exclusionary actions, not the lack thereof.

    I notice you skipped mentioning Glen Park, Bernal Heights and Seacliff which are majority white and majority single family homes. You also didn’t mention The Mission which is Latino majority and majority multi-unit.

    San Francisco has a whole is 69% multi-unit and and only 31% single family, so neighborhoods that have less than 69% multi-units (like Noe) are more single family home than the city as a whole. Also San Francisco is 41% non-Hispanic white, so neighborhoods like Forest Hill are whiter than the average.

    Forest Hill is 20% whiter than San Francisco as a whole and has half as many Blacks and 1/4 as many Latinos has San Francisco, but you hold it up as an example of integrated housing. Why is that? Are you familiar with its foundation as a racially exclusionary subdivision?

    I don’t consider Silver Terrace to be part of Bayview, nor does the San Francisco Realtor Association.

  55. You obviously have no sense of subtlety or irony. Maybe your ‘Bama ruts are shown’ through.

  56. Agree. I don’t really care for the term NIMBY either and try not to use it. I think there should be a distinction between the people who actually care about protecting the poor from predatory real estate and those that are seeking to better their own self interests. I.e. the renter activist speaking for the low-income vs the “concerned” homeowner speaking for the privileged neighbors who just want to continue to see property values rise, or landlords or do not want the competition, or just straight up racist people who do not want POC or poor people near them.

    I think the former should come to the table and work to make SB827, or something similar, work for everyone. I think the latter should fuck off. I think we’d all agree the latter should fuck off. Right?

  57. Your NIMBY insistence that houses be built elsewhere is fueling urban sprawl.

    Poor personal hygiene is no t a state wide water plan.

    What’s your plan?

  58. Thank you for your response. Yes, a compromise needs to be worked out between NIMBYism, which basically controls (and undermines) housing construction, in my view, and those who want unfettered development. But I think that SB827, with some tweaks, will solve that problem. For the Bay Area “region” of 8 million people San Francisco/Oakland is, and will be, the core at the center. And I see nothing wrong with upzoning, across-the-board for my high-rise housing. It is good for the environment.

  59. They’re totally different subjects. We’re talking about building homes for people to live in, you’re talking about whether or not we’re teetering on the brink of societal collapse if more people live in California. All of California was settled on what’s basically a desert but now we’re at capacity. Bullshit.

    Jesus effing Christ! Would you like to impose a one-child policy for California? Households only eat up 10% of the water, will we all die if that rises to 11%? How do you propose we keep people out of California? A wall?

    You might as well be sitting in your bathtub clutching a gallon of Crystal Geyser crying “No, it’s all mine! Go away!” to anyone who finds you.

  60. Scott Weiner should denounce people for exercising their First Amendment guaranteed freedom of speech? I do not care about the “YIMBYs,” but I do care about an “open letter” asking an elected official to denounce a group exercising their freedom of speech. I also very much care about a BS attempt to insinuate their was some sort of implied violence by the YIMBYs simply because they may have been loud.

    The behavior being complained about is the exact SAME behavior routinely engaged in by protesters in SF across the political spectrum, and involving a wide range of issues. It may be noisy, or even rude (to some people), but it is legally protected behavior.

    There is nothing for Scott Weiner to denounce. This letter is utter nonsense. The signatories need to grow a backbone and simply engage in honest debate. They dislike SB 827, fine. They should just write a letter voicing their objections to the proposed legislation, and stop playing the victims and complaining about other people exercising their First Amendment rights.

  61. Your right. San Francisco has a potential of 145,000 homes to be built. SB827 isn’t needed. Why destroy the rest of the city. BTW, you need to make yourself aware of the environmental hazards of putting housing on industrial sites. Hunters point, Treasure Island have radioactive contamination and cancer causing chemicals. Parking garages, gas stations and other commercial sites have problems too. https://youtu.be/Fyo29vAe5i4

  62. Yes, my navy showers are really destroying the environment. I don’t know WTF you’re talking about, creepo.

  63. No. It’s a question for you and other NIMBY leaders. You’re causing terrible environmental destruction.

    What’s your water plan?

  64. That’s a question for Sen. Wiener and the real estate lobby. I’m not the one proposing this radical wrecking-ball proposal.

  65. The propaganda says singe family zoning discriminates against minorities. I included census tracts with above average percent of single family units, above 68% and gave examples where single-family areas were mostly minorities. Evidence that single family zoning does not discriminate on the basis of race.

    Some of the areas you included are not single-family majority: Pacific Heights ranges from 1% to 21% single-family units; Marina from 8% to 17%; The Castro 15% to 27%; Corona Heights 26-27%; Duboce Triangle 15%; Eureka Valley/Dolores Heights 20-26%; Mission Dolores-Castro 7% to 18%.

    Forest Hill is less than 50% White. West of Twin Peaks is less than 50% White. St. Francis Wood/West Portal is less than 50% White. Ingleside Terrace/Balboa Terrance is less than 45% White.

    Sherwood Forest is in the Miraloma Census Tract. It is 52% White. In the 1950’s Miraloma Park was a Black upper middle-class enclave. Carlton B. Goodlett lived there and Calvin Simmons was raised there. Willie Mayes lived in Sherwood Forest. Miraloma Park was not exclusionary.

    Noe Valley: Is mixed and not above average single family. One census tract in Upper Noe Valley is 52% single-family the other 47%. The other census tracts from 26% to 31% single family.

    You say the Noe Valley was once a working-class family neighborhood. If it was single-family and working class, it was not exclusionary.

    I am familiar with Noe Valley. I lived on the hill between Noe Valley and Eureka Valley 45 years ago in two-unit building. I shopped for groceries at Bell Market, bought ice cream at Bud’s from Bud himself, and sometimes had breakfast at coffee shops there, I forget the name.

    I had an opportunity to buy the flat I lived in for $80K. The landlord sold his hardware store on Market off Castro and wanted to retire to the country. I preferred to buy a single-family home, so I turned down the deal. That may have been a big mistake.

    I get my information from the census. It counts the total number of housing units in a census tract and the number of single family units. If there are 25 two-unit buildings (flats) and 50 single-family homes, the percent of single family units would be 50%.

  66. Go to their websites and make inquiries. There is a glut of overpriced empty units—high turn over and unfilled because only elites and high earners can afford them.

  67. You still have no plan.

    Why are NIMBYs refusing to take responsibility for the urban sprawl you are causing?

    Why do you not have a plan in place?

    Wouldn’t it be better if we suspended all NIMBY privileges and policies until you come up with a plan?

  68. These homeowners who are scared of apartments in their rich neighborhoods are out there at the same rally. Build housing anywhere else but next to my single family home because of ‘privacy’. Living in a tent denies you of privacy and of security. Shame. https://t.co/q5ArVlYIZs?amp=1

  69. Okay, let’s take the ultimate example. Miwa Indians controlled The Mission for 4,000 years. Spaniards, Irish-Americans, and Latinos only a mere 125. The Miwas did not leave voluntarily. The tribe was pushed out. So, Miwa NIMBYs should be able to take control of their rightful land once again?

    As I wrote above, you cannot prevent change. You cannot prevent neighborhoods from changing.

  70. Of course. There are no environmental or infrastructure protections or guarantees in place, only the onerous burden of making cities pass resolutions to claw back any local control.

  71. Could we all please stop making apocalyptical comparisons between SB827 and the fire-bombing if Dresden in World War II?

  72. If you go to a protest and you are upset that someone is disagreeing with you, you need to grow the hell up.

  73. Have you read the bill? It does not bypass CEQA. Perhaps you are thinking of SB35 which passed last year?

  74. You don’t make any sense. Try to use common sense: 500,00 of units will not happen overnight, all this bill does is upzone to allow people to build taller units. They still have to through planning, which includes adding water, sewer, electricity, transportation impacts etc. California has grown from 19M to 40M in my lifetime we can somehow manage to grow another 10M.

  75. And I can’t believe the YIYBY crowd is NOT discussing water in an age of longer and more frequent drought, rising sea levels, and the attack on environmental regulations.

    Jesus effing Christ! Just as there’s a limited amount of space to build on, there’s a shrinking amount of natural resources. Basic, real estate troll, basic.

  76. Wow, the YIYBYs’ bullshit machine is going into overdrive! SB 827 RADICALLY dismantles environmental and local democratic controls without solidifying infrastructure measures. And I’m sorry your type finds environmental concerns a “nuisance” in the age of climate change.

    I’m not saying you’re a paid real estate troll, but your interests are indeed showing.

  77. Don’t scream housing crisis and simultaneously say we have to build, build, build to meet a housing crisis.

  78. http://www.climbsf.com/neighborhoods/noe-valley/

    “Once a working-class neighborhood for families, Noe Valley has gone through several waves of gentrification and is now considered a very upscale neighborhood for professionals with families. It is primarily made up of single-family houses and a few multi-family buildings”

    You claim that it is mostly multi-family housing. Have you ever actually been to Noe Valley? I suggest you visit it before furthering that claim. Where do you get your information from?

  79. You forgot about Pacific Heights, The Marina, St. Francis Wood, Ingleside Terrace, Noe Valley, Glen Park, The Castro, West of Twin Peaks, Forest Hill, Sherwood Forest, Forest Knolls, Cole Valley, Miraloma Valley, Westwood Park, Westwood Highlands, West Portal, Balboa Terrace, Clarendon Heights and all those other high income mostly single family home neighborhoods.

  80. People discriminate not zoning. In San Francisco, the higher the percent of single-family homes the lower the percent of Whites. The higher the percent of “mid-rise” multiunit buildings the more Whites. Looking at San Francisco neighborhoods with above average percent of single-family homes they are 20% White on average. These neighborhoods with above average single-family homes include the Bayview, Bernal, Central Sunset, Crocker Amazon, Excelsior, Ingleside, Ocean View, Outer Mission/Mission Terrace, Outer Parkside, Portola, Sunnyside, and Visiacion Valley. Many of these neighborhoods are also lower income.

  81. When driving becomes more expensive and inconvenient than taking transit, more people will take transit. That is a good thing, not a bad thing. Reducing car trips and green house gas emissions is a primary goal of SB827,

  82. I made pro-bicycle remarks in front of all the Supervisors, and none of them denounced me. By your logic, they all approve of my evil anti-car Agenda 21 master plan.

  83. Wiener is very pro-transit and has consistently worked towards those ends, including finding funding for it. Problem is, whenever anyone wants to improve transit in this town, the ENUF morons scream that there’s not enough density (!) and besides, where will they parrrk their carrrs?

  84. The Bayview is mostly single family. Eight of the ten census tracts are majority single family. Four of the eight are over 80% single family. Two, Silver terrace, is 98 and 99 percent single family.

    Neighborhoods are not absolute for any characteristic, it is a matter of degree. No neighborhood is 100% for anything. You can find dense and multiunit neighborhoods that are not White. However, there no correlation between housing density and race. But there is a negative correlation between percent single family and percent White. More single family, fewer Whites. In other words, single family zoning is not exclusionary based on race.

    While multiunit neighborhoods include Chinatown, Western Addition, and the Tenderloin; White multiunit neighborhoods (more than 60% White) include: Alamo Square, Anza Vista, Cole Valley/Parnassus Heights, Corona Heights, Cow Hollow, Duboce Triangle, Eureka Valley/Dolores Heights, Haight Asbury, Hayes Valley, Inner Sunset/West Cole, Jordan Park/Laurel Heights, Marina, NOPA, Noe Valley, Pacific Heights, Poterero Hill, Presidio, Presidio Heights, Telegraph Hill, and Twin Peaks. There is a moderate correlation between White and neighborhoods with 5 to 19 units per building. A weak correlation for 20 or more units.

    Western Addition: 56 to 63 percent non-family households, 10% children, 8% school age children and less than 1% high school age children. Tenderloin has even fewer. They would not be my model for what the City should look like. These are not family neighborhoods.

  85. Older homeowners may have equity in their homes, but that doesn’t translate to more spending power, unless they sell and move to the boondocks, and most people don’t do that. People whose home is worth money don’t get an income out of it unless they rent it out.

    Anyway, that is beside the point. Housing prices are determined by the prevailing income of renters and homebuyers. These generally are new arrivals and people moving around, not people who already own homes here.

  86. “NIMBY” came from producers of toxic waste, an attempt to paint the people living in Love Canal as selfish and short-sighted. As an environmental activist, I’ve been called that many times. Its use has mutated, but its purpose remains the same: to ignore substantive issues by calling people names.

  87. “I’m a fact-based leader. I look for the reliable studies, for the rational solutions that we know will work. In fact, we have the solution already: we need to create more homes for all San Franciscans: families, teachers, police officers, nurses, students, the elderly, and the homeless. Everyone. At the same time, we need to preserve some of our city’s most valuable affordable housing stock — rent controlled units. We must fight to protect the most vulnerable from eviction and displacement. We need to remember that San Francisco is made great by its people — not by its buildings”

    Wow, that is really neoliberal, you are 100% right…

  88. Prove that Nema and Argenta have many vacant units because I don’t believe it. The overall vacancy rate in SF is 2.5%.

    You are wrong about Weiner as well, as he massively increased the amount of money that businesses had to pay for Muni. You are ignorant about many things.

    You are ignorant about First Class pricing as well, I can show you some academic work on the topic if you like. They lower prices just before a flight to fill seats. I have flown to the East Coast in a First Class seat that cost the exact same as a Coach Seat (paid for by my employer of course).

    If San Francisco wants to mandate cheaper construction, we are welcome to do so. I think we should mandate that a certain percentage of housing is “affordable by design” with lower ceilings and cheaper finishings. I know alot of “Progressives” complained when Scott supported the building of micro apartments, of which there are now hundreds in SF.

  89. Parking lots, empty lots, former retail outlets, former factories, there are literally hundreds of places to build in SF alone that would not displace anyone. The City has already identified places for 40,000 units, mostly in Candlestick and Hunter’s Point and Treasure Island.

    SB827 includes anti-demolition and displacement provisions already including a right of return if you housing is removed due to construction.

    In every place I mentioned rents are going down once enough housing was built. The stuff that was built in 2017 costs less than the stuff that was built in 2016, so if you want to call that unicorn magic go ahead. Everyone else calls it the laws of economics.

  90. Where are they going to build thes “magic” apartment buildings except on existing lots currently occupied by homes and businesses? YIMBYs must stop believing in unicorn high density that doesnt force the relocation of people and businesses and cost less than existing housing stock. In every place you mention, rents have risen dramatically for moderate priced housing. Luxury housing is built first.

  91. I have a policy of blocking racists, crazy people who can’t carry on a conversation without being reduced to personal insults and people who lack a basic understanding of the rules of logic, the laws of economics, the laws of science and and who lack basic human decency. It is rare day indeed when I encounter someone who embodies all these qualities.

  92. Provide evidence for your claim that Argenta and Nema has high vacancy rates. San Francisco as a whole has a rental vacancy rate of 2.5% so that indicates a very tight rental market, not one with plenty of vacancies driving down rents. In Portland, Seattle and DC a glut of new construction has driven down costs:




    Weiner is in fact one of the most pro-transit supervisors San Francisco has ever seen. Weiner championed a Transit Impact Assessment Fee which would land on new office construction.

    “City Hall rarely puts its money where its mouth is in terms of funding Muni, and we know that Muni has a $100 million annual operating structural deficit, and that leads to inadequate maintenance, not enough vehicles, and all of the other things that reduce Muni’s reliability,” Wiener told Streetsblog. “The updated TIDF, and ultimately the TSP, is going to be a critical stable source of funding. We have this broad non-profit exemption that was put into the original TIDF which is something of an anomaly because non-profits typically pay other impact fees, and I don’t think it makes any sense to exempt particularly larger non-profit projects like hospital projects and large private schools or university campuses from the fee.”

    To help clear up any misconceptions circling around non-profit and housing organizations about who would pay the fee, Wiener’s office produced a Frequently Asked Questions sheet [PDF], which explains that the vast majority of non-profits would remain exempt:

    Who will pay TIDF under these changes?

    Anyone who:

    – Has a non-residential development over 5,000 square feet AND
    – Increases the net square footage of the current building by at least 800 square feet AND
    – Doesn’t change the building use from a high-trip generating use (like retail) to a low-trip generating use (like industrial)

    Who doesn’t have to pay the full TIDF?

    Anyone who:

    – Is a non-profit (proposed) or small business with a development under 5,000 square feet OR
    – Is building affordable housing OR
    – Is building a residential project of 20 units or less OR
    – Doesn’t increase the square footage of the current building OR
    – Doesn’t build the maximum allowable parking spots OR
    – Changes the use from a high-trip generating use (like retail) to a low-trip generating use (like industrial)

    Any one of the above factors will either exempt a project from TIDF or make them eligible for up to 100% in TIDF credits.

    In short, your ignorance of even the basics of economics and how supply and demand work in the real world of West Coast cities, your personal animus against Scott Weiner and your complete ignorance of his policy record make you not worth having a discussion with.

  93. Single family homes might increase in value but apartments and rents would decrease. Just as it did in Seattle, Portland and DC when they increased building multi family housing.

  94. 827 does not bypass infrastructure impact fees, and once the projects are completed the residents will be paying much higher property taxes than you or I. They will be subsidizing us, not the other way around.

    Also, no, SB827 does not bypass CEQA. That’s a shame, because 80% of the time CEQA is essentially a nuisance law masquerading as environmental legislation.

    If we had to satisfy all your concerns before building more housing, nothing would get built. This is why local planning is a problem.

  95. Supply and demand works for peaches at the end of the day at the farmer’s market – to an extent. If it worked for housing, the rents would have come down on all the vacant units at the Nema, Argenta and other over-sized buildings with plenty of vacancies. If it worked for commercial real estate, it wouldn’t have taken the Twitter tax break to fill the years-vacant Furniture Mart. The landlords would have just kept lowering the price on their rents until some dotcom-era displaced non-profits could afford them. If it worked for storefronts, all the vacant spots in the new buildings would cause a downward trend in commercial rent. That hasn’t happened.

    People like Wiener and Breed are opposed to requiring more transit and other impact fees from new developments and requiring more affordable units. They tell us that developers barely make ends meet as it is (“It doesn’t ‘pencil out’ if we have increased costs.”). I would say that is false on the face of it, given the private jets, luxury houses, and fast cars so many developers have. But even if it were true, how can they possibly afford the marked-based “guarantee” that more supply equals lower costs to consumers? If they make ostensibly zero dollars now (which is more or less what the pro-development crowd likes to say), how will they make money by building more and selling or renting at an even lower price?

    If the Wiener crowd wants cheaper housing, they should mandate that no unit have rare imported woods and marbles and ultra-high-end appliances since those are only expensive add-ons that do not solve the housing problem. They can also limit the ceiling height to seven feet, thus allowing for eight stories instead of seven (and decreasing construction costs per unit) in taller buildings. They can stop fucking around with developments like 555 Fulton Street, which is now beginning its fifth year of construction and whose original buyers (almost three years ago) have backed out because the developer is screwing with the project (and causing unending construction noise etc. for the people who live (or go to church) near the site.

    Building luxury products that no one has ever needed will not lower prices. Even with a glut of them, the price won’t budge significantly. Have you ever gotten on an airplane that is packed at the back and empty up front? First-class tickets do not become almost free at the last minute. That defeats the purpose of first class: to keep the rich safe from the masses.

    Supply and demand is easily manipulated if one has deep pockets. The manipulation of the energy market by Enron and others nothing to do with actual supply and demand. It was entirely jackasses fucking up the “free” market. Someone making blanket statements about how the price of any and all material goods respond to supply and demand would fail Econ 101. Housing policy in a city with massive income and wealth disparities in a country that believes in the absolute primacy of private property even more than it believes in the Second Amendment right to own enough firepower to kill thousands is not best left to the developers, landowners, bankers, and venture capitalists.

  96. I talked to Rafael Mandelman yesterday and he told me that he believed in supply and demand and that building more housing will make it cheaper. Does that make him a Randian too? Everyone believes in supply and demands except a few flat-earthier types.

  97. I’d argue income inequality comes from the previous generation (those that installed Prop 13, Rent Control, downzoning, and orchestrated the “public process” opening the door for frivolous neighborhood “concerns”) designed the entire system around the idea that those that got here first and got theirs will consistently benefit more and more over time than those who come here later, including their children.

    I have a friend who’s parents own a home in the Peninsula. Their parents have become exorbitantly wealthy via the inflation of their home price; it was standard middle class fare when built in the mid 80s, but now it’s viewed as a palace given it’s location. The parents are empty nesting it due to Prop 13, and will not downsize as it doesn’t make financial sense to do so (despite the stairs getting difficult for the father). Meanwhile, my friend pays more than 3x rent for a 1BR than their parents pay in mortgage and property taxes combined. They’re all college educated. All white collar jobs. Yet still, the income inequality when you account for housing is ridiculously out of whack and we’re just talking one family.

    Those in power decades ago purposefully tipped the scales in their favor because “They got theirs, and you can too”. This bootstrapping mentality is bullshit, as we can all see. And it’s only getting worse.

  98. Actually, I do. I argue against privatization all the time, which would undermine publicly funded transit. But even if I did not, so what? I don’t have unlimited time and my primary concern is tenant protections.

  99. It is blocked for me, so no, I couldn’t read it without some effort.

    Oh, and fuck you for the needless smarm.

  100. Did you read the article? Do you have a long enough attention span to get through a whole article in The Economiat?

  101. Why do you believe there would be a huge increase in population? At most, this would allow population growth to go up to what we easily handled in the 70s.

  102. You are completely wrong. Upzoning with sb827 would immediately increase the value of the land making home prices skyrocket. Only the quality of life will suffer, not prices.

  103. Don’t bother. Zutsa cannot keep this in his head; apparently the density of YIMBY talking points has allowed no more open space for reason.

  104. Actually, outside of San Francisco, home buying statistics show that Millennials are leading the charge to the suburbs.

  105. So, as expected, you were unable to provide evidence of your claims. I’m not going over this same dance with you where you twist everything I say and make outrageous assumptions about my financial status. You seem jealous of those of us with rent control and yet oppose the idea of expanding it. How odd.

    And you stick to your simplistic mantra of supply and demand, leaving out what is being supplied, and what is needed.

  106. Look at the relocation maps. Every dot represents homes and businesses that will be destroyed under SB827. San Francisco will be leveled for Dresden styled redevelopment. These “new and improved” YIMBY buildings need to go someplace right? The only place is where people and businesses are now. Stop the lies. https://transitrichhousing.org/

  107. I can’t believe people are engaging with you about the water plan. Do you really think we’re going to run out of water by adding more housing to SF?

    People are moving here regardless. That’s why housing is expensive. Why don’t you round up all the poor people doubling up in living rooms and in live-work warehouse spaces because of their errant water use?

  108. Is that why condo median price is 1.2 mil but SFH median price is 1.6 mil? Seems like knocking down SFHs to build condos very literally brings the prices down

  109. Staving off SB827 would inflate property values for owners because of the lack of supply. I cannot believe this doesn’t make sense to you. Your logic is as follows: The more of something there is, the more expensive it gets. That is stupid.

    And I’m sorry, are we not in an affordability crisis? You can fuck right off with your privileged perspective of not having to worry about “the money” as that must be nice for you living in your comfortably rent controlled place. Quality of life for me means being able to find a place to live in which I can have a bedroom for my children. Quality life for you means making sure your neighborhood looks exactly as you like it.

    This false dichotomy bullshit needs to end. The protections for current renters can/should/are not being threatened.


    Building more will very likely mean less displacement. Let the rich move into the new buildings, not yours. Why do you believe that that is so impossible? Do you think it is impossible? Or do you really just not want new people here, as you think “they” will ruin your “quality of life”?

  110. calling people out for their selfishness and lack of concern for the harm they cause thanks to the raw power of their $’s is not “dehumanizing” – it’s honest. the plain fact that 95% of them share a certain ethnic composition is not racism – it’s honest. the dynamics of race, wealth, and power in America – and San Francisco – have not been more obvious or more consequential.

  111. that is obtuse. the irish and italian american Mission residents left VOLUNTARILY after WWII as part of the great national post War suburban out-migration. it was their choice. today’s gentrification displacement is NOT A CHOICE. they abandoned their social capital willingly. i watched North Beach’s “Little City” italian community fade into history in the ’70’s. no one pushed it out. it wasn’t about the $’s. that generation of immigrants just grew old, and there just was not a new generation of immigrants to keep it going. but today’s MIssion is very different. you want to talk “change,” get your social history right.

  112. Infrastructure is not even addressed in SB 827. No funding for increased water, sewage, transit, roads, utilities, schools, police and fire, etc. And it eliminates CEQA. So, yes, water is a small part of it. Unless you’re Los Angeles.

  113. Wait, now Atherton is Breed’s puppet master? Get your racist fear mongering story straight, crazy racist cult lady.

  114. I never hear NIMBYs discuss water policy or the effects of sprawl on the Central Valley river deltas.

    Why are you silent about the harm you’ve done to these areas?

  115. You’re lying Tim.

    Constraining supply has driven up values. You’ve accomplished this through down zoning, manipulating supply by creating the world’s most Byzantine approval process and deliberately obfuscating the issue by allowing “journalists” like you to completely distort the problem.

    Familiarize yourself with Prop 13. And the concept of the tragedy of the commons.

    And try to be honest.

  116. Wait, what’s your statewide water plan?

    Over 80%of usable water in CA is used by industrial scale agriculture. NIMBY plans to push the middle class out into the Central Valley will add sprawl and water waste.

    High density urban environments are, by definition, more water efficient.

    We can add water waste to th list of NIMBY crimes.

  117. Oh, poor crazy racist cult lady! Speaking of delusions of grandeur, how is your side career as fast food restaurant reviewer going?

    What you don’t seem to understand: neither I nor anyone I can think of cares about you, an irrelevant, toxic racist whose support for SF reactionaries is emblematic of the Trump era. You are one of thousands. If you disappeared tomorrow, no one would notice or care, there would be many more to take your place.

    The good news: you’re very old and increasingly irrelevant. You are a self resolving malignancy on my city.

  118. Sorry, no, this is not guesswork. Our water allocation system is the problem, household water usage is just one tiny contributor. It’s like worrying your cats are going to starve if you get one more cat, but raccoons are eating 90% of the food.

  119. From the price, that was about when I’d moved to SF, too. What changed was the dot-com boom, with rich newcomers at open houses up-bidding the prices.

    SF in 1950 had the same population as in 2000, with less housing built, but was much more affordable.

  120. You are deranged if you think SB827 will result in the forced relocation of millions. It will make the area more affordable, and set up on a path of more sustainable growth.

    And it will disempower the most destructive forces in the housing scene: the affordable housing nut cases, who never get anywhere because of their singular lack of grasp fo basic economics, and the homeowners, who continue to benefit, thanks to to their remarkable grasp of basic economics.

  121. In a word, guesswork. There is no water plan in place, it’s not part of the discussion, but it could involve the radical surrendering of the public’s most precious common resource in the process. Build big and worry later.

    Incredible. I hope people on the fence about this legislation read your comment.

  122. I said SF is closer to capacity, whatever that might be. There are legitimate differences of opinion, but unless capacity (people per square mile) is infinite or a negative number, then SF is closer to capacity than less densely populated areas on the peninsula.

    I cannot read Japanese, but I know that many parts of the world have much more densely populated urban areas than New York City. I also know that even NYC’s transit system is far behind Tokyo’s. Wiener’s bill does nothing to ensure funding for infrastructure. Except for 555 Fulton, which might never be completed, a new building takes about two years (after approval, but with Wiener’s bill approval will be automatic). By contrast, building a subway of any significance could take twenty years or significantly longer (extrapolating from the snail’s pace of the Chinatown/Fourth Street line).

  123. When I first moved to San Francisco, we built enough housing for everyone and my rent was $400/mo for a room in a big shared house in the Haight. After thirty years of NIMBY and “Progressive” obstructionism, a newcomer would be lucky to get a similar room for four times that.

    It is really only a Bay Area sickness, Progressives all over the rest of the country generally are in favor of new construction because they know that shortages lead to price increases.

  124. It won’t make single family homes cheaper, but it will make apartments cheaper. Building more has worked in Portland, Seattle and Washington DC cheaper. It would work here if we tried it.

  125. Take off your dark glasses. Please note that the entire room of YIMBys cheered him with twinkle fingers and Senator Wiener did not censure him. In fact, the YIMBYs generational hate is encouraged. Youll see ageist remarks every day in their posts. See below.

  126. Please understand, Jim: I don’t want to see property values increase in my neighborhood. SB 827 and increased density will make my modest house worth a lot more money. If I thought this would bring down property values and allow working-class people to buy homes again in SF I would support it 100 percent. It won’t.

  127. Please remember: In a lot of SF, increased density means INCREASED property values. So this idea that people want to protect property values by slowing housing development makes no sense.

  128. In the context of housing, I don’t really care since household water usage is less than 10% of the total, and our indoor water consumption is very high compared to a lot of other places. We have plenty of water, we’re just not allocating efficiently or charging appropriately. To answer your question:

    1. If I were god I’d nationalize water and charge everyone for water whether they pump it out of the ground, divert it or obtain it from municipal water supplies. That doesn’t necessarily mean charging everyone the same amount. As reservoirs drain, prices will rise. If it becomes unprofitable to grow alfalfa or almonds, so be it.

    2. More likely what will happen is we will allow some some privatized water sources to sell water to urban markets, educing the amount of water availability for farms, and increasing the urban supply.

  129. What’s your water plan for for a huge increase in population? Infrastructure? Gridlock Ubers and Lyfts? Air quality?

  130. Idiot Boy obviously labors under the false impression that his crap has any impact on me. That would require me caring about what he thinks, and in addition, giving credence to his absurd claims. He is a true narcissist. He thinks he actually matters.

  131. Also, SoCal outdoor water usage is roughly equal to indoor water usage for the entire state. So get rid of that and there’s water for another 40M people.

  132. Yes, allowing people to build homes in a housing shortage is a total scam.

    And no, I don’t think we need to use water as an excuse to stop building homes.

  133. Urban water use has been declining even though urban populations have been growing. Urban water use is only a small part of California’s total water use and even then urban areas have been making good progress with water recycling and other use reduction measures.

  134. Please provide evidence that this group is “probably jazzed to see ICE in the Bay.” Please provide evidence that a.) staving off SB827 would inflate property values of homeowners, b.) that their opposition stems from property values.

    The sad thing about you, Zutsa, and the other YIMBYs is that you are so obsessed with money that you project this obsession onto everyone else. Sure, there are people whose primary concern is property values (and they would be able to sell high if SB827 were to pass), but there are others who care about quality of life, something that YIMBYs seem to trivialize. It does not seem at all healthy.

    You talk about ICE but show no concern about immigrant communities being pushed out by gentrification.

  135. I’m brown and furry. I want to keep the nuts in my neighborhood, and the acorns, of course.

  136. IN other words, it rains on the parade of SF landlords, who are protected from competition.

  137. Says someone whose girlfriend threatened to sue Muni because the driver wouldn’t allow her bicycle on — or did she actually sue?

  138. Well, don’t you think those measures should be in place FIRST?

    SB 827: a massive, quick-buck scam.

  139. Ouch! Crazy racist cult lady learned long ago that she should never be called out as the right wing extremist she is, it looks bad. And sounds worse.

    Looks like I touched a nerve.

  140. they haven’t actually advocated for measures needed to actually get affordable housing built (by right development, optimal IZ, article 34 repeal).

  141. I can hear that southern twang. I can see why you don’t like being called out as a right wing racist. You’re one half a step from cross burning, aren’t you?

  142. Poor crazy racist cult lady! You don’t like it when people call you out as a right wing extremist and enabler of SF’s rent seeking elite.

    Have you always been a puppet for others? Was it your time in the cult, or something else that turned you into a sheep?

  143. Oh, poor crazy racist cult lady! You don’t like what you see in the mirror, do you? I can’t blame you. Years of right wing extremism and self deception – not to mention KFC – can’t look good.

    As I’ve suggested elsewhere, why not focus on being a better person rather than lashing out at those who notice and comment on the wretched, toxic person you’ve become?

  144. It is not clear how that is relevant. More development will cause more auto traffic and more transit traffic. 60% now get to work by car.

  145. Bayview, Western Addition, Chinatown and the Tenderloin are the denser and more multi-unit neighborhoods in The City. They are not more White.

  146. Yes, again, it’s always worthwhile to remind people of the facts — even if it’s irritating to those with an ideologically-encumbered mindset.

    There was no “housing crisis” in SF from the end of WWII until the 70’s.
    During this period, the system was such that it allowed the production of adequate amounts of housing relative to demand in order to keep housing costs relatively reasonable. From WWII to 1979, on average, we produced 32,000 units of housing per decade in this City.

    (This is why the hippies, i.e, the NIMBY’s of today like Calvin Welch, were able to buy old Victorians in the Haight.)

    Starting in the 70’s increasingly exclusionary/anti-housing/anti-density policies were introduced and over the years continually added to (e.g. through down-zoning, an increasingly cumbersome Planning Code and distended entitlement process, onerous fees, etc.)

    This “tradition” continues today to the point we have a Planning Code that is over 1600 pages and growing (BTW, the largest and most complex in the nation.)

    From 1979 until today, we have averaged 19,500 units of housing per decade — a 39% reduction in productivity. Within the current decade, with all the supposed construction going on, we’re only on track to actually finish barely 21,000 units.

    Production has dropped precipitously and continues to underperform due to a chronically inefficient, inordinately lengthy and expensive governmental review process. For the average 100-unit building, It takes 2 to 3 years and million$ in fees, just to get permission to build, then you’ve got to prepare the working drawings and actually build the project which typically requires another 2 to 2-1/2 years.

    Because of this, since the late 70’s, through every business cycle, housing costs in SF have risen at an increasingly unaffordable rate — ultimately reaching the “crisis point” we have today.

    This is not a “temporary problem”, this is a chronic, “hardwired” problem — created/exacerbated by flawed governmental policy — and it will continue indefinitely unless we reform our poor housing development policies to encourage and incentivize the creation of housing rather than discouraging it.

    The only viable solution is to build more housing — a lot more housing.
    Until we come to terms with this fact, our housing problems will persist and worsen.

  147. The interesting thing is, NIMBY was originally used to refer to people who did not want things they viewed as nuisances or such built near them. For example, opposing having a prison near their town, or some huge plant, or a military base. It was not even really an insult.

  148. Seattle had some of the same lifestyle features attractive to talented young people. To some extent the same for Portland.

  149. Yes, the price of admission has gone. It not necessarily rich people but you need a high wage job to afford it. Allowing multiunit buildings won’t make it any more affordable. In general, single family homes are more affordable, price per room, than units in multiunit neighborhoods. Where do you find multiunit neighborhoods that are more affordable?

  150. More housing at the expense of car-accommodation will in fact make traffic better. Learn the Jevons Paradox and Braess’s Paradox.

    Or, alternatively, don’t bother, and just keep posting the same misinformed nonsense over and over.

  151. I hope you are right. Breed would be a nightmare. We don’t need a continuation of Brown-Newsom-Lee. Quite frankly, they were progressively worse. I didn’t think ANYONE could be worse than Newsom, but Lee proved me wrong. Newsom was more stupid than corrupt, but Lee was more corrupt than anything.

  152. Then adding more housing around Forest Hill and West Portal Metro will make traffic even worse.

  153. Bigots.

    I am familiar with the area in question. When I was attending CCSF, I would transfer at the nearby Muni station, and I had ridden through there on the bus from time to time. It would not have impacted them, but they reacted out of pure bigotry.

  154. The “NIMBY” label is namecalling. Self-identifying as “YIMBY” is a way of doubling down on the namecalling. I loathe both terms.

  155. The issue was the allegation that single family zoning is exclusionary. Since 2010 the White non-Hispanic percent has changed in the West of Twin Peaks Area. Zip 94127 is now 49.7% non-Hispanic White; Forest Hill 47.9%; West Portal/St. Francis Wood 49.8%; Balboa & Ingleside Terrace 44.2%.

    Most of the single-family neighborhoods are non-White: Bayview, Excelsior, Crocker Amazon, Vis Valley, Portola, Outer Mission, etc. It is the multiunit neighborhoods that are White.

    The Inner Sunset is not single-family and is majority White, and it gets Whiter you go east toward Stanyan (Cole Valley). When you get to the Haight is over 70% White. I am not sure where you get your data, but only part of the Inner Richmond that is over 50% white is the census tract near Lake and Presidio Terrance. The Richmond is around 45% White, give or take.

  156. Vehicle infrastructure is 1) already past the saturation point and 2) already impeding modes that would serve more people, and the planet, much better.

  157. Idiot Boy again proves my point. In his warped mind, there are only YIMBYs, and NIMBYs. He has a very simplistic world view, with no relation to reality. He also is very much amoral in the Ayn Rand style. Any thing that advances his cause is acceptable. Lying is acceptable, and dissent must be crushed.

  158. Yes, we need more affordable housing, with a moratorium on market rate housing unti enough is built. When we have ensured that the poor and middle class are housed, then we can look at reasonable growth. But this build without rules idea is insane.

  159. There’s a severe affordable housing shortage. If you have enough money, there are places for sale or for rent in every neighborhood in the city.

  160. Actually, he has advocated for more housing for people who can’t afford them now.
    Anyway, what does that have to do with what he’s saying? Plenty of renters agree with him too.

  161. You must be new here, we tried that with Prop M in the 80s. Companies just responded by cramming in more people in less office space.

  162. There is a limit on what people are willing and can afford to pay. The increase is due to more (higher percent) of higher paid workers. People are mobile. No one is forced to come or to stay.

  163. And anti-market rate housing development, which has caused the housing shortage we have today.

  164. He is a hypocrite: he got himself a market rate house but doesn’t want anyone else to enjoy that privilege.

  165. In Inner Richmond 53.02% of the population is Caucasian.

    In West Of Twin Peaks 55.96% of the population is Caucasian.

    In Inner Sunset 54.75% of the population is Caucasian.

    Noe Valley has a lot of work to do as well, I agree.

  166. You mean other than the $1M price tag. Only rich people can afford to live here, due to the actions of Ted and you to block any new construction.

  167. Transit use in SF depends on where one works and how far from work, not proximity to transit. Most of Those who live near a transit hub away from downtown get to work by car. Maybe 25-30 percent work downtown. And over 40 percent leave the City to get to work.

    I believe the majority of Japanese live in single family homes. I recall seeing mostly single family homes from the train leaving the central areas of Tokyo.

  168. They would, if you paid for them to come. When Microsoft started there was no tech industry to speak of in Seattle.

  169. That’s already happening to some extent. It’ll keep things from getting worse, but won’t fix them.

  170. Maybe employers will also stop coming if there is not enough housing; the market forces at work.

  171. There is nothing now that prevents new people from moving in. People are free to live where they can afford to live. I think 60,000 leave SF every year. There are currently homes for sale in my neighborhood.

  172. Why must the supply meet the demand? No one is forced to move to SF and no one is forced to stay.

  173. It is still the American Dream and the dream of most people in other nations. As Millinnials age, they too are moving to single family neighborhoods.

  174. Since 70 percent prefer single family homes and less density it will be difficult. How can the government force people to live where they don’t want to live? Dictatorship? They are not saying keep out. Anyone is free to buy a house in my single family neighborhood. People are leaving and moving in all the time.

  175. You’re right, SLO has its problems, but they’re not as bad as those of SF. SF minimum wage is 27% higher, but rents are 100% higher. Eureka has the same $11 minimum wage as SLO but its rents are cheaper still. The flip side is, you can also find plenty of serious articles on the affordable housing crisis in Las Vegas, Des Moines, Dallas, and Calgary, all places which don’t have our scenery and climate. The essential factor in unaffordability is income inequality: the people at the top set everyone’s prices. And income inequality has been rising to various degrees almost everywhere in the developed world.

    I don’t know of anywhere which purposefully kept away an industry like that. Closest I know of are Mountain View, which rejected a Google expansion in 2015, and San Antonio, which rejected Amazon HQ2, but in neither case it was explicitly to avoid gentrification.
    On the other hand, places which for no effort of their own did not experience an influx of high earners, consequently suffer less unaffordability/gentrification.

  176. We would also need to improve vehicle infrastructure. The majority on the westside get to work by car. Only around 25 to 30 percent work downtown, any 40 percent that work downtown get there by car. Most of the 40 to 45 percent that leave the City to get to work, do so by car.

  177. Thank you for your contribution to the debate. Calling someone an “idiot” truly fosters discussion and good will.

  178. Neighborhoods on the west side minority White. If you live in Noe Valley, you are the one living in an exclusionary White neighborhood. Newcomers are moving into the westside all the time.

  179. She helped displace African Americans from the Fillmore. And she clearly has the lack of morals common to Libertarians.

  180. The problem is, Atherton is the sort of place that pays to support candidates like Breed and Wiener and expects to retain their elite status.

  181. Or when we can’t supply enough water, or handle the extra sewage, or deal with the extra garbage. Things YIMBYs ignore.

  182. We have limits on infrastructure. More people use more water, produce more sewage, and more trash. Something the YIMBYs ignore.

  183. London is in big trouble. She was only 3 points ahead last poll, and it’s gotten tighter. She’ll need at least a 10 point advantage after the 1st round to stand a chance. Jane Kim will be our next mayor.

  184. So lets get this straight, you are an Ivy League, Software Engineer frustrated that you cannot enjoy the finest neighborhoods that San Francisco has to offer. This qualifies you as “friend of the working man” ? SB827 will result in the forced relocation of millions. Somehow YOUR needs are more important? Why not just find a place you can afford and settle in just like everybody else? We want to be left alone. I hear Austin is quite nice and affordable.

  185. Oh, now she backtracks. Crazy racist cult lady is as right wing extremist as they come. Right down to her southern accent.

  186. Supply and demand is real. It may or may not be the deciding factor in our housing conundrum, that’s something that reasonable people disagree about, but stating the existence of an economic axiom does not make someone a libertoonian.

    Conversely, the active public sector focus and track record described at that link are very much not libertoonian.

  187. Huh?
    All that is saying is that Redmond has a house worth money. What’s that to do with anything he says?

  188. All I had to do was google “SLO Housing Crisis” and got a ton of a results that would indicate that the people in SLO feel differently. It’s a state wide glut. What I said about mild weather and proximity to national parks and all that can apply to the entire state.

    Anyway, where’s that evidence of other places putting the kibosh on new jobs working out in the public’s favor? Not to sound like a dick, but I’m very curious.

  189. Weather and scenery have been here for a long time. The housing crunch only began with with the dot-com boom, when tens of thousands of people were offered enormous salaries to come here.

    San Luis Obispo and Eureka are nice, too, but they don’t have Google hQ there, and they don’t have our housing problems.

  190. I rode the Yellow Car and bus with my grandfather to and from what is now called the flower market several times when I was 4 years old. He had a few flower shops in LA. What is great is the revival of these systems and the revival of the urban core of LA. On my last trip there to show some foreign friends the sights, we had one entire day easily getting around without using a car.

    While I certainly prefer living in a well-planned and well populated city, I think you underestimate how pervasive the desirability of single-family homes to most people.

    So there are a few dynamics at work here. One is this: Would we be seeing the influx of people into California if there was no single-family housing and only units in higher-density buildings available? I think we would certainly see a slowdown in those seeking to live here, especially if those buildings were in areas without the amenities we have here in SF. What happens if there is a shift in what industries drive the economy? All of those poorly maintained SROs in the Tenderloin that housed the near homeless were once desirable housing units built to house workers. Of course they are becoming desirable again because of our housing crisis. But are the small studios being built now for workers going to be flop houses in the future?

    Another dynamic is that prohibition rarely works.

    While I disagree with SB827, I do believe that some form of regional mandates are in order. In 2009, the State sued the city of Pleasanton because of their limits on new housing. I think that something better than SB827 could specific regional new housing development goals implemented by the State, combined with regional governance to determine how to meet those state mandates. I’m open to other solutions but I don’t believe that leaving everything to the developers is the way to proceed.

    I think that while there may be similarities in what you call NIMBYs and what I call resistance here and in LA, I do believe the housing solutions for each are probably very different.

    It’s a pretty complicated problem. Finally, I’ll add one observation: SF Planning, city politicians and others are ill-equipped to handle resistance. I’ve been on several community panels and on a few councils that had volatile meetings with hostile members of the public. What finally solved this problem was hiring meeting facilitators and getting facilitation training. They provided a process to constructively list everyone’s issues and then through participatory process, prioritize that list. It’s funny that some people who seemed like nutcases actually had thoughtful and valid criticism and, in the end, they became cheerleaders for the projects they once rejected.

    I know this sounds all ‘snowflakey’ but it works and it is worth the effort. The true nutcases who don’t budge and don’t participate are then totally marginalized and become mostly ignored.

    Of course, this would have been better implemented in 2005.

  191. What % of people that work at the salesforce tower were lured in from other places? Is it 30% or 90%? (Or will be, not sure if it’s open yet?)

    Whatever the remainder, the locals who found opportunity there would be very angry to hear that you wish they didn’t have a job right now.

  192. The progressives, and I mean the real progressives who care about gentrification and the rights of the poor and POC, not the ones who pretend to care so that they can inflate their own property values or keep poor people out of their neighborhood, need to abandon their alliance with people like the Telegraph Hill Dwellers and “Protect Noe’s Charm” and use their clout to negotiate, not obstruct.

    Some form of SB827 is needed, whether it’s called SB827 or not, whether it comes from Wiener or not. Is it missing demolition protections? Advocate for them. Should it come with an expansion of rent control or even coincide with a repeal of Costa Hawkins? Let’s talk about it! Make sure the protections are there. SFTU and similar orgs are definitely able to achieve amendments like this, or maybe a whole different bill. I very much want to hear it. Instead, it’s just “no.”

    Just like how the YIMBYs (the group, not the idea) need to distance themselves from the real estate industry, the progressives need to distance themselves from the truly conservatives who are operating out of deceptive self interest.

  193. If a company wants to expand and build more offices, it needs approval. If the SalesForce tower hadn’t been approved, there would be a lot fewer people to figure out how to house, and a more to the point, fewer rich people to upbid prices.

  194. Idiot Boy here is, well an idiot. I was a stringer for UPI in the late Seventies long before they were bought by the Moonies. No, never worked for the Unification Church. And no, not right wing. Now, the YIMBYs tend to be followers of Ayn Rand and Libertarians. So, trying to call others “right wing” is a major strategy of theirs.

  195. What do you call the people that blocked the affordable housing development in Forest Hills? Concerned neighbors protecting their neighborhood character?

  196. Do you have any example of where that has worked in the past?

    EDIT: And how would you account for the mild weather being a demand factor? Or the proximity to national parks, geographic wonders, beautiful scenery?

  197. Eliminating alfalfa for export and horses (instate) would provide indoor household water for another 40M Californians

  198. Al, I believe you are addressing me. The Mission was an Irish-American community from the 1870s until the 1950s. Neighborhoods change. Cities change. You cannot stop that.

    And preventing new housing from being built will push out older residents even quicker.

  199. It never becomes too much, in my view. We cannot “build that wall!” (as Trump would say), and prevent newcomers from coming to SF and California.

  200. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. You say that “San Francisco is close to capacity.” What is capacity?

    There is no such thing as full housing capacity, in my view. I lived in Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo, from 1987-2000, where housing density is much higher than in New York City or SF and micro-housing abounds. But public transportation is so good that only one-in-four households there owns a car. I believe that SB827 will increase housing density close to transport hubs and thereby reduce car ownership (all environmentally-sound practices). San Francisco is the core of an urban area with 8 million residents, and rising. We should be allowing for greater density so that the sprawl ends. Single-family homeowners in our SF suburbs have dictated local housing policy for too long.

    My guess is that you cannot read Japanese. But the numbers alone tell it all:

  201. She is more Keynes than Rand. But I guess if you are a Moaist they all look like capitalists.

  202. DSN, thanks for sharing. The Economist is not blaming the entire LA nightmare on NIMBYism. It merely points out that local jurisdictions have too much control over zoning, which has allowed their residents to change local zoning practices so that little housing ever gets built.

    Equating the so-called “American Dream” with single-family homes is now antiquated. But NIMBYs here in SF still follow that ruse. Witness Jane Kim pandering for West Side conservative votes the other day.

    Finally, some real estate agents are speculators and robber barons, to be sure. But you can’t blame sprawl on people brokering homes for sellers/buyers. What would be the alternative? State-built housing across the board? Abolition of capitalism?

    My parents had good memories of the Yellow Car streetcar system in LA.

  203. How would you do that? People in America have the right to live where they like, how would you keep outsiders from coming here?

  204. He has opposed building market rate housing this entire time. He and his kind have caused the housing shortage which has caused rents to sky rocket.

  205. And you are a nativist and a fool. No one controls if the population grows or not. But when the population grows, as it has, without creating enough new housing, prices skyrocket and gentrification accelerates. By opposing new housing, the NIMBY Left has enabled displacement and gentrification, because market forces work whether you believe in them or not. Way to shoot yourself in the foot, bro.

  206. What’s your proposal for increased water demand? The western states don’t have secure water supplies as it is.

  207. Flooding is right. I never hear YIMBYs and YIYBYs address rising sea levels and more frequent droughts in their prescription for raising the Bay Area population by the millions.

  208. “the guy seems to have a pair.” Yeah, because a Dick and his two balls are what it takes to be a State Senator.

  209. The link you provide actually undermines your position. She states unequivocally “supply and demand is real.” Whether it is “real” or not isn’t even the issue. That position puts her exactly alongside Adam Smith and Ayn Rand.

    Just because she says she stands for something doesn’t make it true. I don’t know if her car is really 16 years old, but I saw her get out of the driver’s seat of BMW SUV type thing about a year and a half ago. I don’t know much about cars but it sure looked shiny and new to me. Regardless of age, though, she can get rid of her car and take Muni like the ostensible housing hero Scott Wiener. Or walk. Her apartment is only about a mile from City Hall. Or bike, even though the bicycle coalition didn’t endorse her for mayor (so her great record as supervisor either didn’t count for much or wasn’t actually true).

    Her crap about the transit corridor density thing on Divisidero (and Fillmore Street) is just that. She refused to push for more affordable units. That is why Affordable Divis started – and continues.

    She’s done nothing for Midtown. I mean, she did donate five bucks at their fundraising barbeque two years ago, so that’s kind of something.

    She has waxed poetic about Airbnb. She stated that she doesn’t care that they [the company] make millions while someone rents out their space. And, no, Airbnb is not about allowing the struggling poor and middle class to make a few bucks for groceries by renting out their couch a couple of weeks a year.

    She couldn’t be bothered to show up to the Mayoral Candidates’ Town Hall on Housing three weeks ago. That would have been a great place to show off her record while also participating as a leader in a community discussion about housing policy and development. Whether she wins or loses, Breed will remain on the Board, and likely as president. She will continue to have an important role in SF politics either way. Whichever position she has after the June election, I would like her to be a better and more skilled negotiator and leader than she has been thus far. If she were able to work with a variety of groups/interests/perspectives/commitments, the San Francisco voters would not have had to vote on two dozen ballot initiatives in November 2016.

    She failed to support Prop G, the eviction/speculation tax. But, of course, she takes money from serial evictors because, well, I can only assume she wants to be allied with people like that (much as Wiener loves the money he got from palling around with Josephine Zhao, anti-transgender “landlord activist”).

  210. It makes no difference. Traffic in SF is bad. Adding 70K residents to Atherton would be easy to absorb. Just a few more tech shuttles, additional Caltrain and SamTrans service, and more Google bikes … plus the dreaded walk to work option.

  211. Yeah, right. Have you tried driving from Menlo Park to Mtn View on El Camino (or Alma or Bayshore) lately?

  212. Says the crazy racist cult lady who once wrote PR pieces for the Unification Church.

    Shameless, thy name is geek_girl.

  213. OK, I’m finally blocking you, the crazy guy. It’s been swell, but all good things must end. Continue to talk to yourself.

  214. You’re just mad because The Economist painted an accurately unflattering portrait of you deplorable racists.

  215. Correct. All you NIMBYs are right wing by definition.

    Thanks for pointing that out crazy racist cult lady.

  216. Says the crazy racist cult lady, former writer for the Unification Church.

    You are the epitome of right wing extremism and arrogant mediocrity.

  217. Corporate oligarchs helped to create the sprawl in LA. If you can get beyond the revisionist history that completely absolves GM and others of any culpability, the truth is that LA had a vibrant street car system that served the urban core until corporations were allowed to buy it and dismantle it. And shock of shocks, they just happened to benefit from the dismantling of this system.

    The other thing you are forgetting is that single-family dwellings have been the ‘American dream’ for more than a century. Success meant moving out of the urban core in to larger homes with gardens – and those homes had racial covenants preventing non-whites from moving in.

    That The Economist and others want to blame everything on NIMBYs and not give thoughtful consideration to what really happened is just more of the same neoliberal bullshit. Sprawl in LA meant huge profits for the real estate industry, developers, the automobile industry, the tire industry, the oil industry, etc.

    Now that the urban core is seen as desirable, and certainly wasn’t for at least 50 years (from the 1950s to the 2000s), everyone wants to place blame for the shoddy infrastructure and high prices.

    Stop with the blame game and stop pretending that the displacement of people is OK because ‘gentrification.’ Once we get beyond those two issues, we can move ahead and plan for growth.

  218. She is a former writer for the Unification Church (who owned UPI).

    She has a long and impressive set of credentials as a right wing extremist.

  219. I’ve actually been reading Tim Redmond for nearly 30 years. He and the Guardian have been calling for building affordable housing all that time.

  220. Aren’t you the one who wrote “ignorance beclowns you” in a comment, addressed to Tim? Ah, good times…

  221. “As the principal author of SB 827 and a close collaborator…” “…we ask you to condemn…”

    The first part refers to “you”, not “we”, even though “we” comes first in the main clause. Is that what you meant?

  222. Plus, the guy seems to have a pair. He did his time at the local level and now that he is in Sacramento he is in a position to take on the Nimbys (statewide) and he is doing it. And he is co sponsored by Phil Ting, so 2/3 of the city’s Sacramento contingent is sponsoring this attack on Nimbys.

    Weiner has seen the worst of SF’s Nimbys and is taking them head on. And then we’re supposed to be surprised that Peskin is leading the fight against it? This is an attack on what he is, his very raison d’etre is to block and limit housing and this bill will rob him of his livelihood.He desperately needs to maintain the failed status quo. Of course he is in full bombastic mode.

  223. I don’t know if SB 827 is a good or bad thing but I like Scott Weiner. When he was running for Supervisor in 2010, he rang my doorbell and spoke to me at length about my concerns. After being elected to City Hall, I saw him all the time on Muni (and I have never ever seen another city supervisor riding Muni). Many people and groups like Michael Petrelis and Gypsy Taub have tried to destroy him over the years, but Scott always stayed focused on the needs and wishes of the people living and doing business in District 8. I have lived in District 8 for over 40 years and Scott has been the best D8 supervisor that I have witnessed. I am glad to see that SB 827 has started a much needed conversation. The obscene price of real estate and the growing masses of people living in the streets requires us to do something. If you are opposed to SB 837, then give us your proposal. If you don’t have one, then just go away.

  224. So people who are not like the ones you prefer are “conquering” with the money and have no dreams? Dehumanizing the other is the first step to racism. No one identity group has a permanent lease on a neighborhood to the exclusion of others. Your racism limits your vision.

  225. Tone down your racist stereotyping please. You can voice your opinion without being so negative and racist.

  226. The average price of a home is at or above $1 million all throughout the Bay Area. If nothing is done and the economy remains stable, housing costs will continue to rise by double digit percentages each year. The argument that the current situation creates affordability does not hold up. It doesn’t. One need only consult the going rates to rent an apartment to see that. Continuing to do what we’ve been doing isn’t working. California is way behind on building enough housing for its rising population.

    It seems there are further modifications that need to be made to SB 827, but continuing to put off changes to how decisions to build more housing are made will only make the situation worse in the long run. Both sides of the debate have valid points – displacement must be avoided and communities protected, and at the same time, the population as a whole needs sufficient housing. Some compromise is needed. Change is coming whether we are prepared for it or not.

    Right now, we have run away displacement (homes in East Oakland are now $500,000 and up, homes are all but out of reach in SF except for the wealthy). This is creating havoc on poorer and working class communities as middle income buyers are pushed further and further into such areas due to affordability. Rich communities have more resources to preserve their “character” which pushes change into areas that are relatively less powerful in comparison.

    There is a huge a mismatch between available housing and demand for housing. Rents are increasing by double digits all over the area. Prices to buy homes are increasing even faster. San Francisco Bay Area is all but doomed to become an area where a family needs hundreds of thousands of dollars in income to be secure in housing unless there are more homes in all areas. When push comes to shove, the dollar will be what determines the winner. If communities continue to deny change, then the changes will continue to unfold as they have been. Those who refuse to prepare still get flooded when it rains too much.

  227. If the supply doesn’t increase, then the existing demand will create more competition for existing housing stock. There are 8 million people in the Bay Area and no one has the right to pick and choose who gets to stay and who has to leave. The alternatives are to live with existing supply, which puts a major squeeze on poorer residents who get outbid for housing, or try to find a way to build more housing units with affordability requirements.

    One day, I suppose we will arrive at a point where the area cannot physically bear any further increase in population, but it won’t be the first area to hit that point and we are not there yet.

  228. I don’t think that’s a bad question, honestly. I think it will become too much when we start to run out of resources. When something goes wrong and there is a water shortage for a few years and millions die. Or some kind of airborne virus rips through the city cutting the population in half. Or something.

    But that’s not going to happen with the undramatic introduction of 6 story apartment buildings to the Sunset. It’s just not.

  229. First paragraph: Apologizing for allying with straight up conservatives who are probably jazzed to see ICE in the Bay. Thinking that those “allies” are not against SB827 for a completely opposite reason: to make the city more expensive so to inflate their personal property values.

    Second paragraph: Whataboutism.

    I think you’re being duped.

  230. So there are newcomers you like, and newcomers you don’t like. It’s a city, and a lot of different types of people live there, and move about. If housing were added, instead of blocked, more people would be living along side each other.

    You may find “those people” insufferable, but that’s just you. They are also people, you know. Your assumptions and generalizations are just that.

  231. San Francisco is the second most densely populated city in the country. I think Palo Alto, Mountain View, Los Altos, Hillsborough, Atherton and even San Jose have a lot more opportunity to increase density. Whatever the “magic number” for people per square mile might be, SF is much closer to capacity than those other cities.

    Atherton, for example, has approximately 1,430 people per square mile compared to San Francisco’s more than 16,000. SF is about ten times as large as Atherton, but correcting the latter’s density deficit would create homes for about 73,000 people. Now, I do know that Atherton is very expensive property by anyone’s understanding of that. But, since it has Caltrain going through it (i.e.,, it is “near” public transportation), someone could buy one of those properties and (under SB 827) build a one-hundred story building with nothing but microstudios in it it (say forty of them per floor). Those 4,000 units would surely make the development costs affordable, even if the land acquisition costs were $25 million or more. And remember those lots are big enough that you might be able to build five or six similar buildings (think of it as the Atherton “Hub”). I think that would be a much better place to build than in San Francisco.

    It might sound as if I am being facetious, but I am not. Building such a high-rise in the midst of the 1% idyllic haven would not only create 4,000 units, but it would also drive down property values throughout Atherton, which would have the added benefit of making the second, third, and fourth such high rises that much more affordable (so maybe they could be regular studios instead of micro units).

    The libertarian argument (embraced by “I am not a progressive” London Breed) that trickle down works for housing might actually make some sense in a place like Atherton where the rich could painlessly abandon their estates and take up residence at one of their other four or ten homes. Such an exodus would create a downward spiral in the cost of land. Some of those lots are big enough that they could be turned into campgrounds in a few days. The empty houses could be divided into multiple units. People could live there until the Hong Kong style apartments were built over the next couple of years.

  232. It starts with ignoring idiots like you. You are beneath contempt. You have NO shame. You will use an insult, no matter how vile, or libelous to push your insane agenda. You are a classic extremist.

  233. Now, this is what I am talking about. The YIMBYs use vicious lies to,attack anyone who does not favor their insane ideas.

  234. No, first off, I did not say NIMBYs don’t exist. What I did say is that the YIMBYs have created a NIMBY straw man that is quite fanciful. Anyone who disagrees is labeled “NIMBY,” whether it is justified or not.

  235. YIMBY Troll: Yes, that’s the top battle cry of the NIMBYs. Protect the status quo and prevent newcomers from entering your staid old community.

    ME: That’s crap. As a vibrant Latino community, for 40 years the Mission has welcomed “newcomers” to SF – Latino immigrants from many countries, fleeing abject poverty and often tyranny in their home countries. like Chinatown, it was a “portal” neighborhood, with deep cultural social capital built over the decades that provided the vital transition environment for these “newcomers” to join America, raise families, and build their neighborhood along with their own lives. THAT is the “American Dream.”

    BUT the “newcomers” to SF you are talking about are the new White/Asian professional gentry (plus suburban empty nesters) who grew up in the burbs of USA, and who are conquering that community with only their $’s, not any dreams – urged on by real estate agents and market housing developers – just to have a hip self-centered urban lifestyle, not giving a damn about who gets pushed out by that or how the precious Mission community social capital that took so long to build is being so quickly eviscerated because of it. As long as there are some cheap Mexican/Central American restaurants left to get their burritos and empanadas left, they don’t give a fuck. oh, and the Salsa dance studios and the cool murals …

    oh, and the Latino nannies for their babies of course (you gotta be White to be an Au Pair).

  236. If you don’t see NIMBYs in San Francisco and Marin you are literally not worth having a discussion with. You are deliberately ignorant.

  237. Yeah Jane Kim is currying the favor of the racist exclusionary zoning West Siders. What race are you btw? Since you are so opposed to housing for the PoC newcomers to San Francisco? Are you white? Do you want to keep your neighborhood white?

  238. I guess I should point out your error (typo?): his name is Tim, not Tin.

    Since you might edit away your mistake, I paste your comment here:
    “Aucontraire. I was pointing out a grammatical error in Tin’ s writing. You don’t see that via your superb Alabama education?”

  239. You are a joke Tim Redmond, immediately issue an apology for blocking needed housing for the last 30 years.

  240. ROTFL. What you pointed out was not an error. And if I wanted to be nasty, I would take you to task for the errors in your last two posts.

  241. That’s crap. As a vibrant Latino community, for 40 years the Mission has welcomed “newcomers” to SF – Latino immigrants from many countries, fleeing abject poverty and often tyranny in their home countries. like Chinatown, it was a “portal” neighborhood, with deep cultural social capital built over the decades that provided the vital transition environment for these “newcomers” to join America, raise families, and build their neighborhood along with their own lives. THAT is the “American Dream.”

    BUT the “newcomers” to SF you are talking about are the new White/Asian professional gentry (plus suburban empty nesters) who grew up in the burbs of USA, and who are conquering that community with their $’s – urged on by real estate agents and market housing developers – just to have a hip self-centered urban lifestyle, not giving a damn about who gets pushed out by that or how the precious Mission social capital that took so long to build is being so quickly eviscerated because of it. As long as their are some cheap Mexican/Central American restaurants left to get their burritos and empanadas left, they don’t give a fuck.

    oh, and the Latino nannies for their babies.

  242. The bill is being amended by the day. That’s how legislation works. You knew that, right?

  243. I know that is the YIMBY MO, to make a big deal about alliances between tenants groups and home owners. In fact, such an alliance shows just how broadly destructive this bill is. It also shows that as humans there are some things we all care about, such as stable communities; and some things we are all concerned about such as traffic and burdens on infrastructure.

    But since we are talking about alliances, why was your favorite mayoral candidate, London Breed treated to a fundraiser hosted by Bonnie Spindler, who is known for her expertise in using the Ellis Act to evict her own tenants and those of her clients?

  244. When people kindly correct an error before publication, it is editing. When people point out a grammatical error after publication, it is petty.

  245. no, I fully expect to disagree with people

    what I don’t expect is the Tenants Union to engage in any level with a pro gentrification group like protect noe’s charm

  246. Aucontraire. I was pointing out a grammatical error in Tin’ s writing. You don’t see that via your superb Alabama education?

  247. When I was born in California, there were 12 million residents here. Four of my great-grandparents were living in L.A. by 1910, when the state’s population was about 3 million. Now we are at 40 million. Meanwhile the Bay Area has grown from 1 to 8 million.
    We have to build housing to accommated these newcomers. Supply must rise to meet the demand.

  248. Regardless, sure seemed like good publicity for No on 827 to me. The event signifies a broader picture.

  249. The YIMBYs have been on the defensive since push back against this bill included the far-from-left planning department. The bill itself is going too far, and now they have made a fool of themselves in their desperation. They are scrambling to do damage control, though their egos prevent them from doing so effectively.

  250. Exactly. And it is signed, as coming from a group, not an individual. I fear that if it had used “I” he would still not have understood.

  251. You seem to have a problem with written English. The sentence is perfect clear. It is addressed to Wiener.

  252. Has it ever occurred to you that 10m residents is excessive? Have you any idea what a nightmare that could become? Theoretically, we could put the entire world population into an area the size of Texas, with the same density as New York City. But who would want such a thing? It does shoot down the idea that overpopulation is a problem. It would leave the rest of the United States for agriculture, and industry. So, in theory, such a plan could end world hunger, eliminate pollution (power generation could be located far enough away to not be a problem, as could industry, and such. But it would also mean a world with places like Rome, London, New York, San Francisco, etc., as these would all be abandoned. Travel would cease to be reasonable. It might well end wars and conflicts, but the world would be a very boring place.

  253. I’m sorry the idea that people might not accept your insane ideas without question is too much for you to comprehend.

  254. Now that the NIMBY left finds itself on the defensive and in political decline, Tim Redmond suddenly becomes a fan of political civility. LOL.

  255. Excellent article in The Economist about how NIMBYism created the acute housing shortage throughout the state of California. it includes this statement:
    “In 1960 Los Angeles had a population of 2.5m and a capacity for 10m residents. By 2010 the city’s population had swelled to nearly 4m, but zoning and legislation had reduced its capacity to 4.3m. Increasing density is the only way out (other than pestilence, or a crime wave, perhaps), but weaning Angelenos away from single-family housing will be tough. “A good place to start is for politicians never again to utter the words ‘preserve neighbourhood character’,” says Jan Breidenbach of the University of Southern California. “In reality what they’re saying is, ‘Keep out’.”

  256. Yes, that’s the top battle cry of the NIMBYs. Protect the status quo and prevent newcomers from entering your staid old community.

  257. I agree that my YIMBY friends should have left your protest alone. But I don’t understand this, which implies that Tim Redmond and friends wrote SB827. What gives?:

    “As the principal author of SB 827 and a close collaborator with the local and state Yimby organization locally, we ask you to condemn…”

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