Posts Tagged ‘Mayor’

Oh, It’s Here! – The Anti San Francisco Olympics Movement Has Arrived – “SF No 2024″ Comes to Save Us Billions

Monday, January 5th, 2015

Here it is, The Letter, from SF No 2024 (TwitterFaceBook):

Dear Members of the United States Olympic Committee: With one week remaining before your committee votes to select a United States candidate city for the 2024 Summer Olympics, we wanted to introduce our coalition and its goals.

For some reason, SF No 2024 seems to think that the USOC will vote on January 5th, 2014. The USOC might end up doing that, but I don’t know why SF No 2024 is so confident that the decision will come today. [This means I think that they’re wrong wrong wrong.* JMO.]

And here it is, a letter from a coalition to the USOC in opposition to SF’s bid. The USOC has been waiting for this, wondering when opposition groups would start to develop. And here it is. This is bad news for local Olympics boosters, like Larry Baer, and the poeple who feed off of the boosters, like Nate Ballard

“As you know, San Francisco is planning to spend $4.5 billion to bring the
2024 Summer Olympic games to the Bay Area. We believe that money would
be better spent addressing our region’s most pressing social and
environmental priorities, such as…”

Well, San Francisco is “planning” on spending a lot more than $4.5 billion. I mean, area boosters know that it will end up costing us far more than that, so I wouldn’t give any credence to that figure, which is the generic bid amount, more or less, that the USOC wanted for all U.S. cities

And the other thing is that if we’re going to give credence to the $4.5 billion figure, then the official word is that we’ll get all that money back from our share of the IOC pie, from broadcast rights and from Coca Cola and from ticket sales. And then maybe we’ll end up with a “surplus,” or so they say. So, you can’t say that we should cancel our bid and instead spend the $4.5 billion on a host of other things. There aint no $4.5 billion to spend on local housing and transportation and whatnot without the Olympics coming to town.

No no, the danger is SF and the bay area being on the hook for cost overruns, which could amount to something like $10 billion on top of the $4.5 billion. So it’s that $10 billion extra that would rob money from whatever else people want SFGov to spend money on.

…our region’s progressive history or values….

Let me just say here, that the people who signed their John and Joan Hancocks on this letter to the USOC are wingers for the most part, like they’re definitely from the left side of the aisle and they’re not from San Francisco’s dominant right side of the aisle political faction. Compare that with No Boston Olympics, which appears to be more broad-based. (So like, you won’t have any of the core members of SF No 2024 defecting to the pro-Olympics side the way somebody just did over at No Boston Olympics. No no, any Benedict Arnolds who get bought off by SF2024.org would have a high price to pay. I mean, they’d get ostracized, right?)

…above market rate housing … gentrify … waterfront property…

Well, here you go, here’s what we’ll be hearing about for the next ten years if the USOC and IOC pick the bay area for the 2024 Olympics.

The 2012 America’s Cup cost our city over $11.5 million, despite rosy
promises that the event would generate more than $100 million in revenues,
among other unfulfilled promises.

Yep yep yep. Well, except for the 2012 part – it was actually 2013. Not that that matters too much, but I’ll bet the person who made this error doesn’t live in San Francisco, just saying. And come to think of it, lots of people who signed the letter to the USOC live outside of SF in the North Bay. Mmmm…)

If your committee selects San Francisco as the U.S. host city for the 2024 Summer Games, we are prepared to take political action to ensure that Bay Area voters have a say in ensuring that no public funds are spent to host the 2024 Olympics in our region.

Bam! Is this threat credible. Oh, yes it is. Could such a vote win? Yes. Could that kind of thing spook the IOC. Yes. And actually, I could see even some Olympics boosters voting yes.

I’ll tell you, there’s no way the IOC will agree to a deal that doesn’t leave taxpayers on the hook for overruns. No way. So, if SF can’t make that kind of deal, then we’re looking at an embarrassing Denver 1972 situation. Which means that the IOC won’t want to pick SF, right? Which means that the USOC won’t want to pick SF, right?

So, to repeat, bam!

Oh, in other words:

…selecting San Francisco as the United States 2024 Summer
Games host city would jeopardize your efforts to bring the Olympics back to
the United States.

Yep. This kind of political risk will be highest in San Francisco. Then Boston And then Los Angeles. (Sorry, DC, you’re drawing dead. You’ll never get an Olympics. Sorry.)

Hey, who wants another threat to close things out? Here you go:

….the actions that we are prepared to take, in the event that the USOC selects San Francisco as its host city.

And I’ll just say, again, that this is a credible threat, coming from these people, backed with a little service worker money, and that’s all it would take to get a vote against SF2024 on the record.

(And yeah, some of these people are union activists, but they’re not construction union activists.)

And here they are, for the record:

Chris Daly, former member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors
SEIU Local 1021
Ed Kinchley, Co-Chair of SF Committee on Political Education (COPE), SEIU
Local 1021’s political action committee
Tony Kelly, southeast San Francisco community activist
Stephen Burdo, San Anselmo, Organizer, No SF 2024 Olympics
Kathleen Russell, San Rafael, Organizer, No SF 2024 Olympics
Dr. Elizabeth Fromer, President, Liberty Hill Neighborhood Association, Mission District
Matthew Kaftor, San Francisco, Co-Founder, More SF
Paul Taylor, San Francisco
William Mandell, San Francisco
Javier Briones, San Francisco
Richard Stone, San Francisco, The Zeitgeist Movement John Graham, San Francisco, Director, BetaCorp
Zhenya Spake, Mill Valley
Ann & Gene Spake, Mill Valley
Mark Coleman, Sausalito
Deborah Rose, Novato
Devin Hartnett, Oakland
Zachary Beachem, Hayward
… and a growing number of concerned Bay Area residents.

*UPDATE: Oh, now they’re saying January 8th will be the date of the vote. Well, that makes more sense. One assumes that the USOC has issued a release for the MSM and that an MSMer told the citizen opposition of the bay area.)

A Couple Things Wrong with “Mayor Lee’s SHOP & DINE in the 49″ Initiative – Is SF Really 49 Square Miles?

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

Well, no it’s not. Add together all the land of San Francisco County, even including all the landfill and the Farallones and Alcatraz and even including the slivers of islands we only have small parts of, like Angel Island and Red Rock Island and Alameda Island, all of it, is only just 46 point something square miles.

Don’t you people know that?

So 7×7 = 49, yeah sure, that’s a good start, but what about the Great San Francisco Bight? (Or bite, either way.) A big part of our Upper Left is missing, right?

get-involved copy

So you’re the great cheerleaders for the City and County but you don’t even know what it looks like, right?

Is this pedantry what I’m committing? Well, you tell me, babe. Hey, let’s talk about the other Mayor who got appointed by Mayor Willie Brown – let’s hear something from Gavin Newsom:

We can sue – we’re a 49 square mile city, founded in 1849, by the 49’ers. The city [Santa Clara] can’t take the name 49’ers.”  

Well leaving aside the facts that SF wasn’t founded in 1849 and it wasn’t founded by 49’ers (who actually lived far to the east of SF in 1849), and that  some 49’ers settled in Santa Clara as well, leaving all that aside, we’re not a 49 square mile city, right? So that shouldn’t be a any part of a legal argument about where any NFL stadium should be, right? Until at least one of our Mayors gets things right, this pattern will continue. Right?

(And check the video – if that’s what he’s like post-“rehab,” what was he like before?)

Anyway, how about Get Your Kicks in the 46, you know, instead? I’m sure our NikeTown would like that one. Or, rounding up, you could go with Shopping Heaven in the 47?

Oh, and the other thing is that telling people to only shop in the county where they reside, which is more or less what we’re doing here, is a baaaaaad idea for a tourist town like Frisco.

Oh, and another thing is, gee, is this kind of feel-good thing effective? No, but you’re trying to throw struggling boutiques a bone? OK. But with stuff like this?

“Suggested posts:

Having breakfast/lunch/dinner @__________, my favorite place to #shopdine49

I’m making a difference by shopping and dining in the 49 this holiday season #shopdine49

I support local businesses and I love my neighborhood. #shopdine49″

Why would a normal person follow any of these suggestions?

Just asking…

What Trader Joe’s #100 Needs is Ocean Beach-Style Warning Signs for Its Shoppers Who Jaywalk on Deadly Masonic

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

This is typical, this is routine – people parking on Masonic northbound and then jaywalking across five lanes of traffic to get to Trader Joe’s #100 and then jaywalking again back to their rides

7J7C1696 copy

Why do people do this? Well, ’cause getting from northbound Masonic to southbound, which is the only way to get into the parking lot, is a PITA. Drivers are banned from simply turning left into the parking lot because that would end up blocking half of northbound Masonic, and of course Masonic is the Great Connector betwixt The Avenues and the Place Where People Want To Be.

And even if you get yourself facing southbound, you still have to queue up to get into TJ’s ridiculously small parking lot. Hey, couldn’t they have built an underground garage? Well, sure, but you’d have to talk with the Planning Department about that. And hey, couldn’t they have built parking on the roof? Well, sure, and actually they did but you’d have to talk with the Planning Department about that because the average shopper isn’t allowed to park on the roof.

And actually, the current parking situation is better than before. Our vaunted Planning Department did a very poor job with this project and now we’re left with a kludgy fix that commits part of Masonic to TJ’s shoppers idling and parking and waiting.

So that’s the situation, that’s why people say I-don’t-wanna-deal-with-all-that and simply park on northbound Masonic on the east side of the street.

And that’s fine, that’s legal, but then the shoppers see that northbound Masonic has long stretches when it’s empty (because drivers need to wait at a red for a long time to let traffic on Geary go through) and they see a bunch of stalled traffic on southbound Masonic (because of the shoppers queuing up and also to wait at a red for a long time to let traffic on Geary go through). So they march across 30 MPH Masonic to get to the store.

How many TJs shoppers do this on a busy day? IDK, hundreds. It’s their thing, it’s their routine.

So can you die doing this? Sure. Does TJ’s know about this situation? Sure. I don’t see how they couldn’t be aware. I mean, when you have journalists calling up your store asking about how somebody died, I assume that you’re aware of the situation.

What’s the solution? Well, people’d be safer walking down to Geary and crossing legally, but they all already know that.

You see the problem is that they don’t know how dangerous it is to do what they’re doing.

Hey, you know how many people die at Ocean Beach during a typical year? A lot. So many theat they have a special sign:

OceanBeach-3 copy

How about similar signs for shoppers at this unique store:

People Jaywalking Have Died Here

How about that?

Unique situations call for unique signs, right?

Are you going to do anything at all, Trader Joe’s #100?

The Boston 2024 Olympics Committee has a Citizens Advisory Group, But San Francisco Does Not – Why’s That?

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

Here you go, you can try to join the official Boston 2024 Olympics Citizens Advisory Group by clicking here.

Capturekjh copy

Hey, does the official San Francisco bid committee have such a citizen’s group?

No, not at all.

And here’s another thing that’s better about Boston – the Olympics backers over there didn’t go around registering URLs for websites that citizens could use to offer a non-official point of view, like NoBostonOlympics.org for example. Compare that with our local boosters, who went out and registered NoSFOlympics website URLs to prevent anyone from using them. (This kind of URL squatting is a tad cheesy IMO.)

You know at this point, the bids from all the cities have ended up looking pretty much the same:

Capturegdg copy

Obviously, the bid groups have received pressure and guidance from elements of the USOC on what their bids should look like. But one difference is that Boston has a citizens advisory group and San Francisco does not.

In this sense, Boston’s bid committee is better than San Francisco’s.

Bold Move: SF Business Times Prints Shame List of “Restaurants with High-Risk Health Code Violations”

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

Seems a long time ago now, but back eight years the spouse of a County Supervisor had this to say:

“To those mother fuckers at the Golden Gate Restaurant Association: FUCK YOU!”

And I thought, what an odd thing to say, but yeah, I can see where that comes from.

(Here’s just one example – this place is a member. Like, it even gets promoted by the GGRA.)

Anyway, the GGRA spends its time doing things like lobbying against simple letter grades for restaurants, ala San Diego. Which is funny, because posting simple letter grades up front has lots of benefits – like it lowers food poisoning incidents at ER’s in the surrounding area and other good stuff like that. Check it:

“A 2003 study by two economists [Yay, Stanfoo!] found that after letter grades were introduced in Los Angeles, there was a 20 percent decline in hospital admissions for food-borne illness.

But the SF Bidness Times, well, the people there must bump into officers of the GGRA all the time. And yet here it is, the SFBT now has a naughty list a mile long.

Here’s part of it – let’s start with the beginning of the alphabet

Arizmendi Bakery
1331 9th Ave.
08/28/2014: Unclean hands or improper use of gloves (Score: 73)

Ouch. If I were Arizmendi, I’d spend more time striving to get a triple digit score and less time working on buying a “parklet” from the City.

And hey, who’s in charge of AT&T these days? Is it Olympian Larry Baer? I think so:

AT&T – Cable Car Bar (Promenade) [146520]
24 Willie Mays Plaza
09/14/14: No hot water or running water (Score: 93)

AT&T – Say Hey Sausage-Room 5319 [145157]
24 Willie Mays Plaza 5.15.01
09/14/14: High-risk food holding temperature (Score: 93)

AT&T Park – Food Cart
24 Willie Mays Plaza
09/14/14: Sewage or wastewater contamination (Score: 93)

AT&T Park – Garden Table Stand
24 Willie Mays Plaza
09/14/14: High-risk food holding temperature (Score: 93)

AT&T PARK – Gotham Kitchen
24 Wilie Mays Plaza
09/14/14: Unclean or unsanitary food contact surfaces (Score: 91)

AT&T PARK – Hearth Table Stand
24 Willie Mays Plaza
09/14/14: High-risk food holding temperature (Score: 93)

And yet, all the scores appear to be similar? I’m sure there’s a reason for that, but I don’t know the reason. (Are some of these violations no biggee? I don’t know. Which violations are important and which are less so? IDK.)

There’s lots I don’t understand about how SFGov does it restaurant health grading. Oh well.

Hey SFGov, can we get simple, effective letter grades posted out front, ala San Diego? Oh no, you just don’t feel like it? Oh what’s that, the GGRA doesn’t want you do it so you won’t?

OK fine.

So the San Francisco 2024 Olympics Bid is Based on London 2012, Which Ended with a “Surplus?” – Here’s Why That’s Wrong

Friday, December 19th, 2014

Well, here’s your set-up, from the San Francisco Chronicle:

“…San Francisco is trying to apply the model used in London in 2012. The games there were concentrated primarily in existing, temporary or shrinkable facilities and ended with a surplus…”

But that’s wrong, wrong, wrong.

Let’s travel back to 2007, via BBC News:

“The overall budget for the London Olympics submitted in the bid to the International Olympic Committee was £2.4bn.” [In Yankee Dollars, that’s $4 billion-something.]

Now let’s look at the official total of the actual cost, via BBC News:

£9.29bn  [In Yankee Dollars, that’s in the area of $14 billion-something.]

So, how can the boosters of London 2012 claim to have come in “under-budget?” Well, it’s because they simply boosted the budget almost 300% to get it above what they ended up spending, you know, Hollywood accounting* style:

“The budget was revised upwards after taking into account previously overlooked costs such as VAT, increased security… Addressing the original bid budget of £2.4bn, Sports Minister Hugh Robertson said there was a “recognition right from the word go that figure would have to change dramatically on the basis of delivering the Games”

Now let’s hear from San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, to explain things for us:

“News that the Transbay Terminal is something like $300 million over budget should not come as a shock to anyone. We always knew the initial estimate was way under the real cost. Just like we never had a real cost for the Central Subway or the Bay Bridge or any other massive construction project. So get off it. In the world of civic projects, the first budget is really just a down payment. If people knew the real cost from the start, nothing would ever be approved. The idea is to get going. Start digging a hole and make it so big, there’s no alternative to coming up with the money to fill it in.”

Also, how is building temporary stadia (stadiums?) cheaper than building permanent structures? Oh, it’s not, but at least the IOC won’t have to deal with crumbling infrastructure as an icon of the 2024 Summer Games? So, you build a white elephant, then tear it down, and then it’s like it wasn’t even there? OK fine.

I’ll tell you, there’s no way the IOC will agree to an Olympics in the Bay Area without taxpayers being on the hook for overruns. No way. The last time an Olympic City made a good deal was 1984, when Los Angeles didn’t really have to compete with a host of other potential host cities around the world. Just look at what the Mayor of Chicago had to agree to in order to just be considered for the 2016 Games. (Yes, he talked about insurance policies, actual policies from insurance companies, but those wouldn’t have worked out either, for various reasons, the taxpayers of Illinois would have been on the hook for billions, had Chicago “won” the right to host.)

Do you know what SFGov considers leadership to be? Something like this, something like what Chris Columbus showed on his First Voyage:

“Columbus kept two logs of the distance traveled. The one he showed to the crew showed they had not gone as far as Columbus believed. He did not want them to think that they were too far from home.

See how that works? If you’re honest with people, then you’ll never get anywhere So that’s why lying is necessary, the SFGov people feel. The problem is the question of whether The Journey is a good idea in the first place. IMO, they should say, sure, this will cost us an extra $10 billion or so in cost overruns, but here’s why it’ll be worth it.

Oh, and this is just in, here’s Mike Sugerman:

Vegas Odds Makers: Los Angeles, Boston Have Better Shot Than San Francisco To Host 2024 Olympics

If you do the math, our odds of “winning” the title of sole potential U.S. host of the 2024 Olympics are about 17%. (These Vegas odds certainly square with my understanding. IRL, the IOC hates, just hates, the idea of having Washington DC host, and IRL, the USOC is frightened, is horrified, of fractious Bay Area politics, and, frankly, Larry Baer is the last person you want herding cats, if said cats include any city in the South Bay, where, frankly, his name is mud.)

That’s your 2024 Olympics Update.

*In Hollywood, the goal is to make a profitable venture appear to be unprofitable, the better to lower costs for the studio. OTOH, in the world of the Olympics, the goal is to show a “profit” even though expenses exceeded income. 

Here’s Why SF’s Effort to Host the 2024 Olympics Will (Probably) Fail: “Public opposition is expected to be substantial”

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

I’ll tell you, I’m less optimistic about the San Francisco Bay Area’s odds of landing the 2024 Olympics than, say, Messrs Matier und Ross:

“What’s going to matter most is who can play best at the global level against the likes of Paris and Berlin — and on that point, the Bay Area has the lead.”

(Oh, and Rome, don’t forget about Rome, Italy and all those other Euro megacities which also are in the running for the 2024 Summer Olympics and which have a tiny bit more “European flair” than the fourth largest city in California.)

(And you know, sometimes I think our local Olympic “Movement” is a mechanism to separate Larry Baer from some of his money, is a way to allow Lare Bear to dream a little Dream.)

In any event, per Phil Matier [whoo boy, I think Phil’s been spun on this one, big-time, by the usual suspects] we have “the lead” in “what’s going to matter most” at today’s big USOC meeting down in San Mateo County?

I think not.

Let’s now read the news and turn the pages of the Chicago Tribune to get the real handicapping, direct from the source:

USOC chairman says odds good for 2024 Olympic bid, with single city

Let me read between the lines, if necessary.

BOSTON: A viable choice, but there’s lots of citizen opposition already.

DC: They’ll never get picked by the IOC so there’s no chance they’ll get picked by the USOC. They’re drawing dead. (Will it be a good experience sending a delegation across the country on behalf of DC? Sure, for the people that go on the junket. They’ll talk about it for years.)

SF Bay Area: Here you go:

San Francisco likely is the candidate the USOC would prefer under ideal circumstances, but the city’s fractious political atmosphere, venue questions and the number of other large Bay Area municipalities that would probably need to be involved diminishes the chance for that to happen.”It is a city that resonates with the IOC membership,” Probst said.  “There is this magical appeal about San Francisco people find compelling.” Public opposition in San Francisco is expected to be substantial.

These are problems that simply can’t be fixed in a few weeks. Hey, you know what the USOC spends a lot of its time doing over in Colorado Springs? It scans the Web looking for opposition to the Bay Area bid, it ponders how big the opposition will be, ’cause the USOC surely knows it’s coming. Now, one of the reasons we haven’t heard much opposition is that the Olympic Movement is squatting on URLs it thinks the opposition might use. Is that kosher? I think not. SF2024 talks a big game about “dreaming big,” but when the rubber meets the road, it plays hardball. Isn’t that a tad inconsistent? Similarly, Larry Baer says fuck you to the South Bay by blocking any attempt to have the A’s move down there and, all of a sudden, he’s all let’s do this thing, San Jose? Larry’s name is mud in SJ, so why should SJ sign up for its pro-rated share of the cost overruns, like a billion dollars – how’s that going to work?

LA: Front runner, babe.

(Of course, the Chairman, the Dear Leader, is also signaling to the potential US Host Cities what their weaknesses are, the better for them to offer reassurances at the big beauty contest down south this AM. It’s a dynamic situation, of course.)

Hey, how’s that $50 billion Sochi Olympics working out for Russia these days? Oh, the whole country just lost $80 billion but the Russian People are so so happy to have funded a big party for Vladimir Putin? Really?

(And that’s what the IOC did to Russia this year, the year of the IOC’s “Great” Reform.)

All right, here’s hoping that we’ll be out of the Olympic race tout de suite. Let’s hope we don’t send a bill to The Future of $10,000,000,000 in cost overruns.

That’s my Olympic Dream.

If District Two Supervisor Mark Farrell Needs To Be Replaced Soon, Two People with Legitimacy are Abe Simmons and Kat Anderson

Monday, December 15th, 2014

First things first, you tell me how big a deal this is:

Supervisor Farrell directed to pay S.F. $190,000 for violation by John Coté

And don’t niss this part:

“Theoretically speaking, I think they then become the same campaign,” said John St. Croix, director of the Ethics Commission.

Kaboom. Did an effort (from Janet Reilly, or some other Reilly)…

FPPC Stipulation, Decision and Order

…lead to this…

FPPC Letter to Charles H. Bell, Jr.

…almost four long years later?

OBSERVATIONS / QUESTIONS:

1. Why does big news always seem to come out post meridiem on a Day of Frigg, you know, like on a Friday evening? Funny that.

2. Could this situation explain why Mark Farrell nominated (law student(!)) Katy Tang as interim Board of Supervisors President?

3. Is Mark Farrell going to serve out his second term? IDK.

4. If he doesn’t, who’s going to replace him? Mmmm…

The election that District 2 held four years ago was narrowly lost by Janet Reilly, but I can’t see her ever getting appointed D2 Supe in today’s political environment.

Now, what about the people who came in third and fourth, the people who myabe could have / should have formed an ANYBODY BUT JANET ranked-choice voting troika / three-way with Mark Farrell?

Meet Ivy Leaguer Abraham Simmons:

Does he still live in the District? IDK.

Now meet Stanfoo-educated Kat Anderson:

I’m thinking either of these two attorneys could slot right into the job.

You know, if necessary.

Here’s what people have been talking about over the weekend:

Agenda – December 16, 2014

SAN FRANCISCO ETHICS COMMISSION
NOTICE OF SPECIAL MEETING and AGENDA
December 16, 2014, 5:00 P.M.
Room 400 City Hall
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, San Francisco

[EXCERPT]

  • Discussion with City Attorney’s Office regarding potential litigation by the City Attorney’s Office against local committees, including Common Sense Voters, SF 2010; Vote for Mark Farrell for District 2 Supervisor, for violations of local campaign finance laws.  Possible Closed Session.  (Attachments: FPPC Stipulation, Decision and OrderFPPC Letter to Charles H. Bell, Jr.)
    1. Public comment on all matters pertaining to Agenda Item III, including whether to meet in closed session.
    2. Vote on whether to assert attorney-client privilege and meet in closed session under California Government Code section 54956.9 and Sunshine Ordinance section 67.10(d) to discuss anticipated litigation:  San Francisco Campaign and Governmental Conduct Code section 1.114.  (Action.)
    3. Conference with Legal Counsel:  Anticipated litigation.  (Discussion.)
      Number of possible cases: 1
    4. If closed session is held, reconvene in open session.
    5. Discussion and vote pursuant to Brown Act section 54957.1 and Sunshine Ordinance section 67.12 on whether to disclose any action taken or discussions held in closed session regarding anticipated litigation.   (Discussion and possible action.)
      Motion:  The Ethics Commission moves (not) to disclose its closed session deliberations re: anticipated litigation.

I suppose we’ll find out more tomorrow…

United States Olympic Committee to Meet in Redwood City on December 16th to Consider 2024 Olympics City Choice

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

Well, here we go: The United States Olympic Committee is going to meet in Redwood City, CA on Tuesday, December 16th, 2014 to:

1. Announce it will* submit the name of a single* American city/region to the famously corrupt International Olympic Committee. This was supposed to happen in 2015 but things are getting pushed up.*

2. Hear the pleas from all the boosters from Boston MA, Washington DC, LA CA, and the San Francisco Bay Area. Like here’s why we’re going to have the best Olympics ever kind of thing.

The invite for low-level media should look something like this*

WHEN: X:XX PM PST, Wednesday, December 16th, 2016. The specific time may change on the day of the teleconference. Please check your e-mails to be sure you don’t miss the start of the call.
WHERE: Electronic Arts, 207 Redwood Shores Parkway, Redwood City, CA 94059
NUMBER: 1-800-XXX-XXXX
PASSCODE: XXXXXXX
WHO: Larry Probst, USOC Chairman, Scott Blackmun, USOC CEO
TOPICS: USOC Board meeting

Speaking of corruption, here’s Larry Probst toasting “Pooty,” aka Vladimir Putin:

chi-20141209-001 copy

Yish.

Suspiciously, the boosters from these very different cities/regions are saying the 2024 Olympics will cost pretty much the same amount of money: $4.5 billion or so.

Suspiciously, the boosters from all the bid cities/regions are saying that this whole process is at “its earliest stages” or “in the first inning,” but actually, whichever American city/region that the USOC picks over the next month or so will instantly become the front-runner for getting picked by the IOC to host the 2024 Games. The problem with that is that any area that gets picked will be on the hook for the inevitable overruns. And those should be around $10,000,000,000* or so.

So that’s where we’re at, that’s your 2024 Olympics Update.

*Probably

The Evolution of Color in the Lights of Civic Center’s Christmas Tree and City Hall – This is How SFGov “Works”

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

This is how the Christmas Holiday Tree in front of San Francisco City Hall was lit at night back in the aughts:

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Via Steve Rhodes, who, like Visa, is Everywhere You Want To Be.

Do you see a problem? All those gaudy lights in the tree offended certain rich white ladies of San Francisco! They felt all that colour was “not appropriate.” So they imposed their values on the RPD, as they are wont to do, and RPD spent five figures to correct the “problem.”

So that left us with this:

O.K. fine.

Except this lack of color just wasn’t jazzy enough for other certain people.

So then came this:

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Via Julie Blaustein

And now Mayor Willie Brown wants ever more color.

So, the colors came out of the tree in front of City Hall and they went into City Hall itself.

Were these changes “improvements?”

No. But that’s what they were called at the time.

Oh well…