Archive for December, 2012

Hey, Guess Who’s Jacking Up Its Rates for 2013? PG&E, That’s Who – Why? PG&E Incompetence, San Bruno Explosion

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Hey PG&E! Are you going to end up turning a profit on the killing of those eight people down in San Bruno?

You remember them, right? The eight people you killed?


Click to expand

Hey is San Francisco shadow-Mayor Willie Brown still on PG&E’s payroll?

Sure, why not?

And hey, is the leader of the San Francisco Democrat party still on PG&E’s payroll?

Again, sure, why not?

Is that a good thing?

Oh well.

Here’s today’s happy talk from your energy monopoly:

“PG&E Rates to Change Modestly at Start Of 2013

Gas Rates Will Dip, Electric Rates Will Rise in Line with Inflation to Pay for Enhanced Safety, Reliability and Clean-Energy Programs

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) said today that with the start of the new year, residential customers will see a significant decline in natural gas rates, and a modest increase in electric rates to cover the utility’s costs of maintaining and modernizing its system and of meeting a state mandate to buy more renewable energy. (See table below for average estimated bill impacts.)

PG&E’s average rates for residential gas customers will dip in January almost six percent compared to January 2012, thanks in part to lower wholesale costs for gas. However, customers should expect an increase in gas rates of about two percent as early as February, reflecting spending approved this month by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for PG&E’s Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan. This plan, one of the most aggressive and comprehensive gas pipeline modernization programs in the United States, will help PG&E achieve its goal of operating the safest and most reliable natural gas system in the country.

Average residential electric rates will increase about 2.6 percent system-wide compared to last January, close to the rate of inflation in Northern California. The increase is driven primarily by higher costs for acquiring clean, renewable energy to meet state mandates, and by spending previously approved by the CPUC for operating, maintaining and upgrading PG&E’s electric generation and distribution systems. Thanks to such upgrades, electric customers recently experienced the lowest rate of outages in the utility’s history.

Customers will likely face another electric rate increase this May of about two percent to pay for additional electric transmission infrastructure to modernize California’s power grid and deliver more renewable energy to customers.

“We know our customers care more than ever about their energy bills during these difficult economic times, so we continue to focus on keeping rate increases as modest as possible while raising enough revenue to continue improving our safety and reliability,” said Tom Bottorff, Senior Vice President of Regulatory Affairs for PG&E. “These revenues help us serve customers by reducing the frequency of electrical outages, improving the responsiveness of our call centers, providing more convenient services and, above all, continuing to upgrade the safety of our gas and electric operations. Although electric and gas rates fluctuate from year to year, our average customer bills remain well below the national average.”

Bottorff added, “We try to empower all of our customers with tools to help them better understand and manage their energy needs so they can control their bills and make the best use of our services.”

SmartMeter-enabled online tools like MyEnergy, money-saving programs like Winter Gas Savings, rebates for energy-efficient appliances and home retrofits, and bill payment options make it easier than ever for customers the get more value for their money.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE: PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to 15 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit


     Customer Usage January 2012         January 2013       Change
     ————– ————         ————       ——
         550 kWh                  $89.31             $91.60        $2.29
         ——-                  ——             ——        —–
         850 kWh                 $184.23            $188.05        $3.82
         ——-                 ——-            ——-        —–
        1,200 kWh                $301.54            $307.13        $5.59
        ———                ——-            ——-        —–

     January 2012       January 2013       Change
     ————       ————       ——
                 $82.37             $77.47        -$4.90
                 ——             ——        ——

SOURCE  Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E)

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E)

CONTACT: PG&E External Communications, +1-415-973-5930

Web Site:

Poorly-Designed Octavia “Boulevard” Proves Too Much for Mercedes-Driving Mom – Plows into NIMBY Green

Monday, December 31st, 2012

To the right of this accident scene is Octavia Boulevard.

And to the left, a block away, is Octavia Street.

And in the middle, you’ll see NIMBY Green with a newish Mercedes Benz CLS sitting on top.

Via ciprofloxacin – click to expand

You see, Octavia used to be a regular old street until Redevelopment (a bad idea from the 20th century) and the failed Octavia “Boulevard” experiment (a bad idea from the 21st century) came along.

Anyway. this is what results when “activists” are valued more than traffic engineers

Finally, Graffiti That You Can Understand: “Sinead” in the Panhandle

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Sinead will be with us until our poorly-managed RPD gets done with this maintenance project betwixt Fell and Oak:

Click to expand

This is the most legible graffito I’ve seen in Golden Gate Park since KKKatie…

SFGov Hula Woman, Somewhere on Polk Street

Monday, December 31st, 2012

You know, in an SFGov building somewhere on Polk Street, for tout le monde to see:

Click to expand

Solar powered, anyway.

MUNI’s Oldest Bus Makes the Trip Up To Coit Tower Today – From 1938 With Love – Orange and Black Paint Scheme

Friday, December 28th, 2012

It’s MUNI Centennial Day. so get all the deets right here from the Market Street Railway.

Hey look, it’s old 042 on a trailer on Market Street, recalling a time when MUNI didn’t suck.

Or is it really old 062? I don’t know.

Here she is, from the front:

Click to expand

And the back, complete with a 12-cylinder horizontally-opposed engine and a five-speed manual transmission behind the driver, just like on a Ferrari Berlinetta Boxer:

Keep on keeping on, White Motor Company.

PS: MUNI sucks, nowadays anyway.

New “iCars” On-Demand Car Service? Looks Like It’s From That Horrible Bauer’s Limo / Bauer’s “Intelligent” Transportation

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Well here’s something new – it’s “iCars” from that horrible Bauer company.


Click to expand

That was the wind-up, now here’s the pitch:

” iCars® service is a network of luxury cars, SUV’s and Mercedes Sprinter vans in San Francisco. This network is accessed through a sophisticated mobile application that allows riders to book and pay for on-demand, private and eco-Iuxury transportation service.

iCars® is managed by Bauer’s Intelligent Transportation, leveraging its transportation expertise and quality standards to ensure responsive, safe and superior transportation. iCars® service combines one of the best high-end transportation companies in the USA with the latest mobile technology to improve the ease and experience of on-demand transportation.
What is it? Luxury car service ordered “in the moment” for 1 to 12 passengers—in and around San Francisco, to SFO (San Francisco International Airport)

How to book? Through your smart phone—Apps available for iPhone and Android phones—reserve and pay online”

Hey Gary Bauer! Doesn’t your company(ies) kind of suck?

I think so!

I say that because your Yelp ratings are pretty low even including all those five-star shill reviews. Check it:

Bauer’s Limousine

Bauer’s Intelligent Transportation

What good does social media branding do if your service sucks?

And hey, speaking of Bauer’s social media branding and purported blogger Zennie62 / Zennie Abraham, what’s up with this?

“Note: Bauer’s Transportation is a sponsor”

Is this arrangement still going on now? I don’t know.

It’s mighty interesting tho.


Hey Gary Bauer! Isn’t a Sprinter van mostly a delivery vehicle? I think so. Do you really consider it a “luxury” vehicle?

Hey Gary Bauer! Why don’t you raise your rates so that you can improve your services so that your customers could be a little happier?

Just asking.


Let the Gouging Begin! SideCar Discount Taxi Service to Double Price$ on New Year’s Eve – Here’s Why

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Uh, to make more money?

From Ellen Huet comes the news of SideCar doubling its “voluntary” fares for New Years Eve 2013.

So that means you’ll need to pay double to avoid getting blackballed by SideCar’s drivers.

Of course, if a trained and licensed San Francisco taxi driver charges you double a during busy time, that’s a misdemeanor.

But if a SideCar driver jacks up rates on NYE, that’s called bidness.

Oh well.

Hey, Gentle Reader! Why not check in on SideCar’s “amazing year,” below? You’ll be able to see if any mention is made of CPUC case #PSG-3360, you know, that whole “cease and desist” thing.

If only this woman on Market had a SideCar sign instead of a TAXI sign:

Click to expand

Hello San Francisco SideCar Community!

2012 has been an amazing year:

  1. The Mayans were wrong
  2. SideCar was born
  3. You showed the world that with instant ridesharing we really can help each other get around in a way that’s more fun, efficient and safe.


To ring in 2013, plenty of drivers in our community have told us that they plan to get behind the wheel on New Year’s Eve so that you can hit the town safely without having to worry about driving.  <3  To thank them, we decided to do them a huge favor:

For New Year’s Eve only – and in The San Francisco Bay Area Only – from 5pm-5am, as a way of saying thanks to those driving on NYE, we are going to suggest double the community average donation for each ride within the app.  This means that a ride with a typical community average of $10 will say $20 on Monday night.

Here’s why we’re doing this:

  1. SideCar community drivers are not employed by SideCar or put on shifts of any kind. Going online on NYE (or any night) is completely up to them.  Extra donations will help mobilize an army of designated drivers to help you get safely where you want to go on one of the busiest nights of the year for transportation.
  2. There are plenty of things to do on NYE besides drive…  why not sweeten the pot a little for drivers to keep them stoked on getting people around.
  3. Extra donations = extra appreciation for awesome drivers lending a hand on a crazy night like NYE.

Of course, with SideCar what you donate is always up to you, and the community average is just there to help you decide.  We just feel that on a night like New Year’s a little extra for drivers wouldn’t hurt.  We hope you’ll feel the same way.”

Morning Blue Over San Francisco Bay – A Unique View by David Yu

Thursday, December 27th, 2012


Click to expand

Are These Newly-Installed Bike Racks in the Golden Gate Park Panhandle Worth $4000? Nope, But That’s What You Paid

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

Do area real estate interests demand “distinctive” bike racks for the “dramatically” (soon-to-be) “transformed” and “world-class” Golden Gate Park Panhandle?


Yes they do.

Click to expand

BTW, how much did you all spend to truck that small public bathroom (in the background there) all the way to SF (from Kentucky!)and then have it installed betwixt Fell and Oak?

You don’t want to know.

California Senator Diane Feinstein Defines this Simple Police-Issue Handgun as an “Assault Weapon” – She’s Wrong

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

She’s wrong ’cause the SFPD’s handguns from SIG-Sauer (and others similar) are simple handguns and are not assault weapons.

Here’s the proof. Let’s say this SFPD officer drew his Grateful Dead-stickered gun before arresting somebody. People would say that the cop drew his gun or pointed his handgun at the suspect, something like that.


Click to expand

People would not say that the cop drew an “assault weapon,” would they?


Ergo, the simple police-issue handguns carried by the SFPD are not assault weapons even though they’d be covered under DiFi’s assault weapons ban legislation.

Oh what’s that, Gentle Reader, you object? Well, sustained. I’ll concede your point, whatever it is.

But my point is that the simple police-issue handguns carried by the SFPD are not assault weapons even though they’d be covered under DiFi’s assault weapons ban legislation.

Perhaps she should call it the Assault Weapons and Simple Handguns Bill instead?


I now shall exit your Orwellian sausage factory, you know, to head on back to the real world.

But first, here’s what an actual SFPD-issued assault weapon looks like:

Just saying.


All the deets:

“In January, Senator Feinstein will introduce a bill to stop the sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition feeding devises.

Following is a summary of the 2013 legislation:

  • Bans the sale, transfer, importation, or manufacturing of:
  • 120 specifically-named firearms
  • Certain other semiautomatic rifles, handguns, shotguns that can accept a detachable magazine and have one military characteristic
  • Semiautomatic rifles and handguns with a fixed magazine that can accept more than 10 rounds
  • Strengthens the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban and various state bans by:
  • Moving from a 2-characteristic test to a 1-characteristic test
  • Eliminating the easy-to-remove bayonet mounts and flash suppressors from the characteristics test
  • Banning firearms with “thumbhole stocks” and “bullet buttons” to address attempts to “work around” prior bans
  • Bans large-capacity ammunition feeding devices capable of accepting more than 10 rounds.
  • Protects legitimate hunters and the rights of existing gun owners by:
  • Grandfathering weapons legally possessed on the date of enactment
  • Exempting over 900 specifically-named weapons used for hunting or sporting purposes and
  • Exempting antique, manually-operated, and permanently disabled weapons
  • Requires that grandfathered weapons be registered under the National Firearms Act, to include:
  • Background check of owner and any transferee;
  • Type and serial number of the firearm;
  • Positive identification, including photograph and fingerprint;
  • Certification from local law enforcement of identity and that possession would not violate State or local law; and
  • Dedicated funding for ATF to implement registration

A pdf of the bill summary is available here.