Posts Tagged ‘media’

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.

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 Harvard Crimson Comes Out Against Hosting 2024 Olympics – Why Can’t the Stanford Daily Do the Same Thing?

Monday, November 24th, 2014

Well, here it is, the Harvard Crimson coming out against the idea of Boston hosting the 2024 Olympics.

So why can’t the Stanford Daily come out against the idea of San Francisco hosting the very same Olympics?

I’ll tell you, the United States Olympic Committee is going to be all over the Bay Area over the next 24 hours and then they’re going to pick one of four possible US hosts in a month or so.

So that’s it, the Final Four will be winnowed down and then the next step will be the USOC saying they want the Olympics in America (there’s a 99% chance of that happening) and then the next step would be the corrupt IOC deciding to award the ‘Lympics to ‘Merica.

So this isn’t the “first inning” of this process – it’s more like the seventh. The time to avoid the bay area losing 11 figures on this kind of fiasco is right now right now wikiwiki, Brah.

And here’s John Oliver to bring it all home for us, in a four-minute video.

Recalling How Excited People Were Just 34 Months Ago About Then-New iPhones with Tiny 3.5-Inch Screens

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

What’s the tone here?

“Miles Barquin of Union City gets excited about her new iPhone 4S at the Apple store in Palo Alto on Oct. 13, 2011. (Gary Reyes / Mercury News)”

Capturefdfd

I can’t tell.

(Waiter, I’ll have what she’s having.)

Boy, I wish my cell phone had Siri.*

*Not really.

Sutro Tower + Mothra = HAIGHT ASHBURY COMMUNITY NURSERY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Based upon the wingspan, I’m thinking the kids are referencing Showa-era Mothra:

Click to expand

If you want, Follow Sutro Tower on Twitter – perhaps that will inspire it to Tweet more than once per year.

(Thank you, Sutro Tower, for broadcasting the recent World Cup for free at 1080i.)

Now let’s close with a bunch of NIMBY complaints about the tower plus the Sutro Tower, Inc FAQ:

(more…)

24 Hours of Gannet Co Inc’s The Bold Italic Website: “Sexy Time,” “Sex Toy,” “More Sex” – A Triumph of Form Over Content

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

This was the promise, a few years back:

“From the beginning, art elements and overall design featured prominently in strategy discussions and were kept at the forefront. Inventive and well-known global design firm IDEO was brought in early on to work with Gannett’s innovation team incorporating relevant research into the human-centered design* that was being developed for The Bold Italic.”

The cost to Gannett? Well, millions were spent on just one website / defunct magazine. How many millions? Well, as with Charles Foster Kane’s Xanadu, No Man Can Say.

But let’s check the water cooler chitchat over at The Gannet Blog:

“The revenue plan was mysterious because there was no revenue. Not for the first 24 months anyway. The Bold Italic had a burn rate that rivals some of the most infamous dot.com fizz outs. They blew through $2 million a year for the first 2 years, before snagging a whopping $41k in revenue based on their skimming from entertainment ticket / event sales.”

And that brings us to July 2014, where these bits came out within hours of each other:

Sexy Time: An Oil to Get Your Lady Parts Stoned (NSFW)

Men Can Bone Their iPads with New Sex Toy

Help This Horny Gal Have More Sex with Her BF

My point is that you didn’t need to go There to get Here.

My other point is that:

1. Aging east coast media baron Gannett Co. Inc. is Charles Foster Kane; and

2. West coast corporate money-pit vanity-project The Bold Italic is its Xanadu, and perhaps, eventually, its Waterloo

Oh here it is, 34 Page Street – so sexy! You can see the glow from all that reclaimed wood upstairs:

In closing … Rosebud!

END OF LINE

*What on Earth does that mean? I’m clueless. It’s just blah blah blah while the meter’s running at $500 per hour…

What, Somebody’s _Starting_ a Newspaper in San Francisco? Presenting Issue One of “HATCH Beat” from Liz Fedak of Illinois

Saturday, May 17th, 2014

Well, here it is, an actual real 8-page newspaper “serving Cole Valley, Alamo Square, Hayes Valley and the Haights” – it’s the brand-new HAtCHBeat, Issue One*

Now meet Liz Fedak, Publisher.

Somebody who tried something like this a little while back was Eve Batey. Her online-only effort didn’t work out.

And speaking of online-only, Hoodline (mostly covering “Divisadero, Hayes Valley, Lower Haight, Upper Haight,” mostly) comes to mind as there’s a lot of overlap there. Liz has carved out an area that we can call District 5 Less The Inner Sunset.

Who’s taken notice already? How about D5 Supervisor London Breed** with her City Hall column and SFPD Park Station Captain Gregory Corrales with his Police Beat? 

And add to that an alphabet soup of SFGov departments, including advertisers with big ads such as the Department of Elections and the SF Public Library.

Check it out if you can. You’ll see a bit about Jimmy’s Old Car Picnic (1988-2013) that takes a decidedly anti-RPD position.

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

Do you have interest in writing, photography or videography? Whether you have experience or not, send an email to editor@hatchbeat.com to get involved.”

Leaving you with the categories to be covered:

Business + Money — HATCH Beat
Parenting — HATCH Beat
Profiles — HATCH Beat
Community — HATCH Beat
Calendar — HATCH Beat
Pets — HATCH Beat
Food + Drink — HATCH Beat
Police Blotter — HATCH Beat
Entertainment — HATCH Beat

I’ll tell you, I was startled to see this small newspaper – it just cruised in under the radar and onto my stoop.

 Bon courage, HAtCHBeat!

*AFAIK

**The 2014 London Breed. A bit more sedate than the Fuck Willie Brown-era London Breed of 2012-2013.

How the MSM Rolls Through Frisco: Undercover, Baby!

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

And if you were in charge of these rigs, you’d be sorely tempted to unwrap the advertising wraps as well, on account of all the little monsters who want to assault journalists, steal equipment and vandalize vans:

Click to expand

Racist or Not? Samson Wong of AsianWeek on “Extreme Side Eyes” at the 2014 Chinese New Year Parade

Friday, March 7th, 2014

Here’s the issue:

DON’T YOU SIDEBALL ME: Chronicle’s Beth Spotswood blogged Feb. 17 about being given “extreme side eyes” near the Lunar New Year parade reviewing stand in Chinatown as she vainly scouted for verbal shots against local pols from Chinese Chamber of Commerce advisor Rose Pak. As Spotswood skulked about and expressed disappointment about Auntie Rose’s tameness, she nicknamed one parade observer as a scowling “Side Eyes” allegedly close to Pak…While fortunately not tagging anyone as an incendiary “slant eye” or “round eye,” she had to be referring to a fish …”

Verdict: NOT RACIST. (This was an easy one.)

And actually, Rose Pak got pressured by elements of the Communist Party of China (CPC) as well as SFGov, so she doesn’t mouth off as much anymore.

Even her 2012 performance was relatively tame:

She was out of control back in the aughts.