Posts Tagged ‘Oakland’

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.

Writer C.W. Nevius Makes Amends for “This Isn’t Oakland” with His Gay Games Bit? – SFAA v. USOC IRL

Friday, December 12th, 2014

Poor CW Nevius is still smarting over the drubbing he took over “This isn’t Oakland.” Check it:

 Dec 9  Hey Jessica. If you are going to write something like that, you might want to check in with me. I’m pretty reasonable.
Here’s what he’s so mad about:

SF CHRONICLE COLUMNIST BASHES OAKLAND

See how that works? You all need to check in with CW himself before you criticize him – that’s the rule. It’s a kind of YOU DON’T KNOW ME! defense, one supposes.

So that’s the context.

Now look! San Francisco Chronicle’s right-of-center Everyman has lurched across the aisle with this recent effort about the local history of the Gay Olympics / Gay Games:

S.F. backstory to Olympics’ new policy on gays, by C.W. Nevius

Now here’s your real back story. First, bone up on this:

Amateur Sports Act of 1978

And then see the court case that explains why the term Gay Games is kosher but Gay Olympics isn’t. A 7-2 decision, more or less:

San Francisco Arts & Athletics, Inc. v. United States Olympic Committee

Here’s my point – what Nevius is saying is that the USOC’s effort to defend its “brand” back in the 1970′s was “pointless.” Except the USOC won and now the Gay Olympics is known as the Gay Games and life goes on.

Do you want to get into why the IOC / USOC and all the other OC’s of the world tolerate people using a term like “Redneck Olympics,” at least until it grows into a big event? Be my guest.

(Oh, but wait, the official name of that event in Georgia is now the Redneck Games. Is the USOC against rednecks? IDK.)

Speaking of points, here’s one:

Mess with the Olympic brand long enough and you just might end up with a lien on your house.

Which is fair enough, I suppose.

(And actually, the USOC lifted the lien anyway.)

Hey remember what CW Nevius had to say before the disastrous 34th America’s Cup came to town? He called it:

a wonderful opportunity without a downside.”

Except we ended up with a lot of downsides.

And now he’s cheerleading for the 2024 Olympics to come to town. And while he’s doing that, he criticizes the USOC for stuff from a third of a decade ago.

Of course, he could criticize the current USOC, but no, Nevius doesn’t want to do that.

Hey look, it’s gay rights champion Vladimir Putin chilling with CW Nevius hero Larry “The Good” Probst:

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And when was this shot taken, was it a third of a century ago?

Oh no, it was this year.

Oh well.

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:

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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

CW Nevius Roundup: An Apology to Oakland! – Plus Nevius the Union Activist – Plus Errors re: Golden Gate Park

Friday, December 5th, 2014

1. The Apology. Normally I’d just do a retweet but I’ve been blocked from doing just that, so here’s a back-and-forth on the recent “This isn’t Oakland” bit:

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Now actually, in defense of The Nevius, I think he was merely channeling what the SFPD brass had to say, as Nevius is wont to do, about comparing the SFPD response to a protest situation vs. how the OPD handled things in the recent past. So the stood aside and let the looting and window shattering play out” comment just might have been a reference to comments made a few years back by the Oakland Mayor or by the OPD. So the “this isn’t Oakland” stinger could have been referring to that.

In any event, even the Nevius Wife didn’t like the Oakland Comment, so Nevius apologized on Twitter (and maybe ten people read it). It’s a real apology, but it was made to just a handful of people. 

2. Nevius the Union Activist. Check out this recent bit about San Francisco taxi drivers and then ponder this:

In his own personal life, CW Nevius is a union activist. Like, he goes to meetings ‘n stuff

That means he’s not just a union member, oh no. I’ve been a union member, but I wasn’t no shop steward, I wasn’t no agitator the way CW Nevius is in some kind of media guild thing.

So, isn’t it ironic, dontcha think, that union activist CW Nevius takes such an anti Labor tone?

3. Nevius the right of center megaphone for the San Francisco’s dominant right of center political faction. I’m specifically referring to this bit about Stow Lake Boat House.

He goes on and on about how great the Stow Lake Boat House is now:

And now it looks terrific, and I haven’t heard a word of complaint.

IRL, not a whole bunch has changed there. Tourists come, pay their money, get a boat for an hour, and then do a lap around Strawberry Hill on Stow Artificial Pond.

(Of course, CW Nevius is a newcomer to San Francisco, so he missed out on most of the action at Stow Lake.)

In any event, yes, the opposition to the new vendor was absurd, but that doesn’t prove his point that all opposition to the corrupt right of center political Establishment is absurd. Let’s take a look:

At yet, at the end of the day, not only do we end up doing the right thing, everyone seems to move on and forget and forgive.

So what, did “we” do “the right thing” voting down 8 Washington – did we “forget and forgive” “at the end of the day?” Mmm… Moving on.

Now here’s a load of BS:

To Park Commission President Mark Buell, that’s not just a theory. He’s lived it. “When I became president, I was given some advice,” he said. “I was told there were four things I would never get accomplished: getting a new vendor at Stow Lake, closing the recycling center at Golden Gate Park, charging a visitors fee at the arboretum, and putting artificial turf at the Beach Chalet soccer fields.”

All right, note the passive voice here in the quote from an area right of center apparatchik. Who said these words? Oh, you don’t want to say? Oh, your quote only discusses your victories and leaves out your losses? So, how did the unnamed person making this quote know back then what you would “get accomplished?” I don’t know, you could put Mark Buell through a polygraph session to prove that he believes all this stuff, but it doesn’t mean his memory is correct.

And actually, it was a piece of cake to get a new vendor at Stow Lake. Somebody paid a lobbyist $10k a month for months and months to lobby the Board of Supervisors. That’s the source of this “accomplishment.”

And is closing a recycling center at the request of millionaire NIMBY homeowners an “accomplishment?” IDK.

And is clearing out out-of-towners at Strybing Arboretum an “accomplishment? Not really. RPD wanted to pay more than a million dollars to build two kiosks to pay workers minimum wage to collect seven dollars a head? Yes. And how have things worked out? Well, the number of visitors has fallen dramatically. Is that a good thing? Well, in the eyes of millionaires who like plants more than people, the answer is yes.

I disagree.

IMO, is it short-sighted to fuck over Helene Strybing by renaming the joint and throwing up a paywall in a fruitless pursuit to make the place “world-class,” to impress all the arboretum societies Back East? Yes.

And while I don’t personally object to the new soccer fields at the Beach Chalet, that doesn’t mean that all is well with the political faction that runs Rec and Park. Hey, how about putting parking meters in all over GGP? Wasn’t that an “accomplishment” that the right of center faction wanted? Hell yes. But we don’t have no meters, huh? And the whole issue is forgotten now? How convenient!

Moving on, to San Mateo County:

He might have added saving the Sharp Park Golf Course in Pacifica.

I know why SF runs a jail complex and an international airport in San Mateo County, but I don’t know why on Earth it runs a golf course. Perhaps SF should get rid of it? Is that on the table? No? All right.

His point, of course, was that while each of those initiatives proved to be controversial and difficult, they’ve all been accomplished…

My point is, of course, is that this a highly biased view of the recent history of the RPD.

Moving on to another falsehood:

“Think about the (AT&T) ballpark,” Buell said. “How many people fought the idea of a downtown ballpark? And once it is built, everybody takes credit for it.”

This sounds like the way people talk when they’re drunk, boasting at a bar. It’s not based on reality.

And here’s the stinger, from the newcomer who just moved here, who wanted to move here:

Don’t look for logic. It’s just how we do things.

Is simple-minded CW Nevius, the Fallacy Spewing Machine, on the side of “logic,” really?

OK fine.

FIN

UPI Reports That SF Has Already Submitted Its Secret 2024 Olympics Proposal? – Also, a Big USOC Meeting in SF on Dec 16th

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

Oh, the San Francisco 2024 Olympics bid committee has already submitted its technical proposal to the United States Olympic Committee? Well, that’s news to me. Check it:

Boston, Los Angeles, other US cities vie for 2024 Olympics

So what was the proposal? Oh, it’s a secret? OK fine.

You know, there’s no way that the IOC will agree to have the 2024 Summer Olympics come to the Bay Area without the Bay Area being on the hook for all the inevitable cost overruns, right? That could be ten or twenty billion dollars, right? What’s that, we shouldn’t worry about these matters – we should “rest assured” until the inevitable bill comes? Isn’t that bassackwards? I think so.

And what’s this, the United State Olympic Committee is coming to town for a big meeting on December 16th, 2014? This is news to me as well:

The four cities will make their final presentations to the committee in San Francisco on Dec. 16.

Isn’t this kind of thing kind of newsworthy to the people of the Bay Area?

Anyway, all this seems like a big deal – you’d think Bay Area media people would be covering this issue more…

 

Black Friday Just Wouldn’t Be Black Friday Without the Hanjin Germany

Friday, November 28th, 2014

Heading into the Port of Oakland with 10,000(!) or so containers:

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What San Francisco Chronicle Writer CW Nevius Gets Wrong About Our Bid for the Corrupt 2024 Olympics

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

Here’s the latest from The Nevius – once more unto the breach, my friends, once more:

Olympic insiders dish on S.F.’s bid for 2024 Games - We’ve been talking to some Olympic insiders — nobody likes to gossip like Olympic insiders — and they’ve been sizing up the chances.”

Who’s “we,” Nevius?  Is this nosism, the Royal we? Why do you do that, Neve? (Oh, I’m sorry, why do you guys do that, Neve?) You all should stop doing that, all of you, Neviuses.

The good: There is definitely a strong interest in bringing the Games to the United States. 

I don’t exactly know how juicy this “gossip” is – I think it’s more like common knowledge, right? And considering what the IOC has done to a bunch of cities over the years and decades, I don’t see how this non-gossip could be categorized as “the good.”

The bad: San Francisco’s quirky politics may make organizers nervous. “San Francisco could put something on the ballot,” the staffer said, “and you’ve got Denver all over again.”

OK, so what are you saying here Neve? The short-sighted politicians of Denver and the rest of Colorado made a mistake back in 1970 and that mistake got corrected by the Voters, the sacred Voters, right? Check it: “The IOC had long asserted that it wouldn’t hold the games in Denver unless public money was available to help foot the bill, so unless the people of Colorado would change their minds, the Olympics were going elsewhere.” So isn’t Denver 1976 an example of The Good? I cry foul.

Joke if you will about the proposed pop-up stadium on what is now a landfill in Brisbane, but there is a case to be made that a temporary facility is a sensible option.

The only person in the world to have joked about Brisbane as a stadium location is you yourselves, CW Nevius. FYI. IRL, the venue of this venue is the least of our concerns. IRL, with billions and billions of OUR MONEY, it would be a LEAD PIPE CINCH to make Brisbane work as an olympic stadium. For ex, they could put a roof on it, right?

Beijing’s iconic Bird’s Nest stadium is now called the Empty Nest because it isn’t being used.

As the saying goes, if you start disassembling your “pop-up stadium” four weeks after the Opening Ceremony, all you’re doing is shooting a white elephant. How is that an improvement?

Our insider says, “San Francisco is the most European city,” which plays well with IOC delegates.

“Our insider?” Your (the Plural Your, of course, Emperor Nortonevius) headline promised insiders. And SF is “the most European city” EXCEPT for fucking Berlin, Paris, Hamburg. Rome, St. Pete and all the other European cities what are in the running for 2024.

If San Francisco has one, I couldn’t find it.

Well, here it is – it’s SF2024.Org. Can you find it now, Neviuses?

The Central Subway will be ready by then…

Oh, is that the very same subway what “makes you wince,” Neviuses? What’s that, you know it’s the largest pork barrel project in ‘Merica currently, but you want to maintain your access with the current political Establishment so you say nice things about it now? OK fine. I can’t imagine how the Central Subway would make any kind of difference to the 2024 Olympics, but anyway.

Hey Nevius, weren’t you a big big fan of the America’s Cup coming to town? Weren’t you all:

Holding the America’s Cup race in San Francisco is a wonderful opportunity without a downside.”

Yes you were. But there was a downside, huh? And then you started rooting for the other side and you wished a good riddance to the Cup and now it’s off to Bermuda in 2017. Don’t you see how wrong you were about the America’s Cup? Yes? No? Oh, you’ve already picked up your pom-poms and moved on to the Olympics?

OK fine.

San Francisco 2024 Olympics Roundup: Reaction to Today’s Big Push in the Pages of the SF Chronicle

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

Well, today’s the big day for the bid to have the 2024 Olympics in the Bay Area.

San Francisco puts in chips for 2024 Olympics by John Coté

1. Obviously, an Olympics in the bay area would be good news for the San Francisco Chronicle. Obvs. I mean, that goes without saying, right? See the editorial below. I mean, they learned us this in Economics, case studies of media support for Olympics past.

2. What’s this?

“We have a lot of reverence for the Olympics … but there may be some ways to modernize the Games or do it a little differently,” said Giants President and CEO Larry Baer…

Sounds like Larry’s been looking at opinion polls. You know, Lare-Bear, the other option is to simply let authoritarian regimes host them from now on.

3. Gee, I really think “improvements” should be in quote marks here:

“Plenty of uncertainty remains, however, including whether improvements to housing, transportation and other infrastructure are worth the cost of hosting the Games.”

4. Is this right, our we still in the first inning?

Baer acknowledges that their effort is still in “the first inning,” even after a months-long exploratory process that included meeting with U.S. Olympic officials in July.

I’d say we’re in the seventh inning stretch. This contest will be all over in a month or two. After that, the only question will be whether America gets the Games in 2024.  This “first inning” stuff is spin spin spin.

5. Here’s the start of some nice OTOH grafs:

“It looks more and more like a boondoggle,” said Andrew Zimbalist, economics professor at Smith College in Massachusetts and author of the upcoming book “Circus Maximus: The Economic Gamble Behind Hosting the Olympics and World Cup.” “It’s a very difficult calculus to make work for you,” Zimbalist said. “The modern Olympics costs billions and billions of dollars to host. The recent evidence we have is that it does not increase tourism, even during the Games.”

6. But this part here is false:

Private funding from international corporate sponsorships, ticket sales and local sponsorships would cover operating costs that Baer projected at about $4.5 billion.

How does John Cote know that operating costs will be covered? He doesn’t.

7. And what a coincidence that our budget and Boston’s are exactly the same! Who’s cribbing from whom?

Boston has a similar cost projection of $4.5 billion for hosting the 2024 Games, a number Zimbalist dismissed as “a nonsense figure.” “They don’t know what they’re talking about,” Zimbalist said.

This is a nice, strong statement. One would expect the cost overage to run from something like 200% to 500% – something in that territory.

8. Uh, the America’s Cup was a “boon” to which industries?

Last year’s America’s Cup was a boon to certain businesses but…” 

I can’t think of a one, honestly. A “boon,” really?

9. Here we go:

Olympic bid leaders aren’t touting the Games’ economic benefits, but rather the ability to rally a region around tackling some of its major problems — transportation and housing — while improving San Francisco’s marginalized southeast corner.

So, if we want to help black people in the southeast, why don’t we simply give them the $4.5 billion and be done with things?

10. And here’s your stinger:

“Olympians,” said Cribbs, “are just ordinary people who do extraordinary things.”

 Sometimes, I suppose. Other times, it’s like this:

Moving on… to this:

OPINION – Solid start to Bay Area bid for 2024 Olympic Games – San Francisco Chronicle

11. Whoo boy:

At the top of the list is a pledge that they will not be asking for any direct public subsidies in what is expected to become a $4.5 billion venture if San Francisco were to become the first U.S. city to host the Summer Games since Atlanta in 1996.

Didn’t we just through this with the America’s Cup? Who’s pledging that there will be no public subsidies? This is laughable.

12. Whoo boy redux:

“We’re trying to take all the lessons learned, not just from other Olympics but what we learned from America’s Cup,” said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, adding, “We’re going to be smart about it.”

This is what everybody says every two years. What makes 2024 different?

13. Whoo boy redux II, Electric Boogaloo:

This region’s diversity, appeal as an international destination and leadership in technological innovation would make it a perfect fit for an Olympic Games — as long as it’s done our way, with sensibility and sustainability. The framework of this fledgling bid is very encouraging

The Olympics in the Bay Area would be good for some and not good for others. The Chronicle says we should do things “our” way, but we’re following the well-worn path of countless others. Any “sensible” Olympics proposal from the bay area would get rejected by the IOC, so that option’s not really on the table, now is it?

And here comes CW Nevius, a bit off-message:

Bay Area’s Olympic dreams focused on landfill near Candlestick by C.W. Nevius

14. Ah, Nevius. Let’s watch him beg for access right here on Twitter. A bit unseemly, IMO. And then he goes on about the weather / climate. That’s the least of our problems, right?

15. Remember that stuff from Larry Baer up above about us being in “the first inning?” Forget all that:

It could work, but it would need buy-in — and soon 

I’m not sure why the Neve is so negatory on Brisbane. I think it could “work” as well as any other location.

Anyway, for some reason, the boosters picked today to have a Big Push in the Chronicle.

We’ll see how it goes.

Onward They Charge:

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Gluten-Free + Southern + Breakfast & Brunch = GREASE BOX, an Icon of North Oakland

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

Yelp is polarized:

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Click to expand

Four Horseman of the Oakpocalypse – Oakland and San Francisco, Together Forever

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

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