[UPDATE: Comes now John King to contradict poor CW Nevius: "The fact is, the creators of Prop. B make several valid points."]
Appointed head coach Ed Lee is calling for a punt, but head cheerleader CW Nevius is cheering for a Hail Mary on 4th down with 38 yards to go:
Let’s begin by saying this is a waste of time. I know, that’s not much of an incentive to read, but it is the hard truth.
SO WHEN DID YOU MOVE HERE FROM THE EAST BAY, NEVIUS – A COUPLE YEARS AGO? FINE, BUT WHAT’S THE “WASTE OF TIME?” ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT WASTING _YOUR_ TIME TRYING TO INFLUENCE THE OUTCOME OF AN UPCOMING ELECTION? ISN’T THAT A BIT MUCH? LIKE, DO YOU THINK SAN FRANCISCANS WOULD PONDER MOVING TO WALNUT CREEK OR WHEREVER THE HELL YOU’RE FROM TO INFLUENCE ELECTIONS THERE?
Proposition B is almost certainly going to pass. That’s the ordinance that will mandate an election on any construction on the waterfront that exceeds the existing height limit.
WELL THAT’S ONE WAY OF PHRASING IT, I SUPPOSE. BUT HOW ABOUT “PROP B WILL PREVENT POLITICIANS FROM IGNORING THE CURRENT HEIGHT LIMITS ON THE WATERFRONT,” YOU KNOW, INSTEAD?
It’s got a snappy slogan – “Let the people decide” – an enthusiastic base of supporters and the always compelling what-the-heck factor. Why not vote for it? What’s the harm? I believe the potential harm is greater than you think.
WELL, FAIR ENOUGH, NEVE. BUT I THINK YOUR SELF-APPOINTED ROLE OF BEING THE SAN FRANCISCO ESTABLISHMENT’S “MAN AT THE CHRONICLE” DOES MORE HARM THAN _YOU_ THINK – HOW ABOUT THAT? YOU JUST MOVED TO THE MOST CORRUPT BIG CITY WEST OF CHICAGO, BUT YOU SEEM TO THINK THE DOMINANT POLITICAL FACTION WHAT RULES THIS TOWN IS JUST HUNKY-DORY. BUT I DIGRESS. PLEASE DO GO ON, NEVE, EVEN IF IT IS A BIG WASTE OF YOUR PRECIOUS, PRECIOUS TIME.
Not that it matters. This is seen as such a slam dunk that not a single San Francisco politician is willing to stand up and oppose it. Someone ought to express some reservations.
I BELIEVE ED LEE HAS “EXPRESSED RESERVATIONS” REGARDING PROP B. ALSO, PROP B OPPONENTS HAVE DESCRIBED THE MAYOR AS BEING OPPOSED.
Although supporters continue to call the 8 Washington vote a landslide, citywide win, the numbers aren’t convincing.
UH, NO, THEY’RE _HIGHLY_ CONVINCING. OTHERWISE MARK FARRELL OR SCOTT WIENER OR ED LEE WOULD HAVE GONE ON THE RECORD AGAINST PROP B. ALSO, IT’S NOT JUST “SUPPORTERS” WHO CONSIDER THAT VOTE A LANDSLIDE.
Just 27 percent of registered voters cast ballots, so you could say that almost three-fourths of voters couldn’t be bothered to mark a ballot.
THEREFORE WHAT? THE ELECTORATE IS THE ELECTORATE, NEVE – DEAL WITH THAT. YES, YOU’RE PARROTING THE PARTY LINE, ESPOUSED BY OTHER ESTABLISHMENT SPOKESPEOPLE IN ADDITION TO YOU, NEVE, BUT THE TURNOUT WAS WHAT THE TURNOUT WAS.
It did win across the city, but in places like the Marina and SoMa, turnout was barely 20 percent. And in Bayview and Ingleside it was closer to 10. Still, that’s enough when 50 percent of Telegraph Hill area voters turn out. That’s the strategy. Target an off-year election with low turnout, mobilize the base of voters who favor the position and then claim you’re surfing the new wave of public opinion.
BUT THERE _IS_ A NEW WAVE OF PUBLIC OPINION, RIGHT? SO YOU’RE DEAD WRONG THERE.
So if you liked 8 Washington, you’re going to love Prop B. It’s on a June ballot that will see low turnout, vociferous support from a dedicated core and Agnos haranguing anyone who dares to oppose it.
NEVIUS, DOES ANYBODY ON YOUR SIDE OF THE AISLE EVER DO ANY “HARANGUING?” YOU MIGHT THINK NOT BUT MAYBE THEY DO, NEVE. AND DO YOU SPEND A LOT OF TIME IN BARS TALKING WITH OTHER MEMBERS OF THE ESTABLISHMENT? ‘CAUSE YOU SURE SOUND LIKE YOU DO.
But since he’s already mad at me for calling his group the Flat Earth Society, I’d say this: First, if this is such a good idea, why stop there? Shouldn’t other neighborhoods be able to vote on height limitations?
UH, _ALL_ NEIGHBORHOODS JUST VOTED ON HEIGHT LIMITATIONS, RIGHT? WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT, NEVIUS? WHAT ARE YOU SUGGESTING? DO YOU HAVE AN EDITOR? IT DOESN’T SEEM THAT WAY. WHY DO OTHER PEOPLE AT THE CHRON WHO ARE, YOU KNOW, WAY SMARTER THAN YOU HAVE TO GO THROUGH AN EDITOR BUT YOU CAN JUST WRITE WHATEVER YOU WANT, REGARDLESS OF REALITY?
Or homeless shelters. Or Muni routes? Or whether the mayor should have soup or salad for lunch?
ALL RIGHT, NEVE, HERE WE GO. WE DON’T CURRENTLY HAVE ANY RULES ABOUT WHAT THE MAYOR SHOULD EAT, DO WE? HOWEVER, WE _DO_ HAVE A RULE ABOUT HEIGHT LIMITATIONS NEAR THE WATERFRONT. THE CURRENT PROBLEM IS THAT THERE’S NOTHING STOPPING A DEVELOPER FROM DONATING A RELATIVELY SMALL AMOUNT, SAY GIVING $25,000 TO SOMETHING HAVING SOMETHING TO DO WITH THE AMERICA’S CUP, YOU KNOW, TO “HELP OUT” OUR POOR POOR MAYOR AND THEN, LATER ON, WE’RE LEFT WITH A SITUATION WHERE WE DON’T KNOW WHY THE MAYOR PRESSURED HIS APPOINTEES TO JUST IGNORE THE WILL OF THE VOTERS. I’LL TELL YOU, I WOULDN’T EVER DREAM OF MOVING TO WALNUT CREEK OR WHEREVER AND THEN START TELLING PEOPLE HOW TALL THEIR BUILDINGS SHOULD BE. HEY, WHY NOT THIS, NEVE, WHY DON’T YOU LOBBY FOR A VOTE TO RAISE THE HEIGHT LIMITS ON THE WATERFRONT OR JUST GET RID OF THEM ALTOGETHER? WHY DON’T YOU BE DIRECT ABOUT THIS SITUATION, THE ONE YOU CARE SO MUCH ABOUT?
Elections are expensive and time consuming.
I SUPPOSE NEVE, BUT THE REASON WE HAVE THE PROPOSITION SYSTEM HAS TO DO WITH A WELL-PLACED CONCERN OVER POLITICAL CORRUPTION
They’re also a formula for gridlock. The Giants have prepared a terrific plan for a retail center on their parking lot A.
WHO SHOULD DECIDE HOW “TERRIFIC” ANY PLAN FROM THE GIANTS IS, NEVIUS? YOU, THE NOT-TOO-BRILLIANT SPORTS JOCK? YOU, THE ONE WHO JUST LOVED THE _INITIAL_ AMERICA’S CUP PROPOSAL BACK WHEN YOU LIVED IN THE EAST BAY, REMEMBER? WHY SHOULD WE TAKE YOUR WORD ON THIS?
Now they might have to prepare an election strategy.
FINE, WHAT’S WRONG WITH THAT? PERHAPS THEY SHOULD LEAVE IF THEY DON’T LIKE THINGS HERE. (AND PERHAPS YOU, THE MIGHTY NEVIUS, SHOULD LEAVE IF YOU DON’T LIKE THINGS HERE.)
Second, the elections-for-everything meme short-circuits the political system.
FINE, WHAT’S WRONG WITH THAT?
We elect public officials and expect them to use their good judgment, regardless of the views of a small, rabid group.
DID WE “ELECT” ED LEE? NO WE DID NOT. HE WAS APPOINTED FOR, EFFECTIVELY, NINE YEARS, BASED UPON A PLEDGE HE MADE THAT TURNED OUT TO NO PLEDGE AT ALL, A BIG FAT LIE. AND IF THE GROUP YOU OPPOSE IS SO “SMALL,” HOW IS IT THAT THEIR PROPS KEEP WINNING?
There are those who want to compare Agnos’ small, dedicated core to the Tea Party, which also wants to take government out of our lives.
DOES ART AGNOS REALLY WANT TO “TAKE GOVERNMENT OUT OF OUR LIVES?” NO, NOT AT ALL.
But a better comparison would be Howard Jarvis‘ “people power” revolution in 1978. Jarvis became a national sensation when he championed Proposition 13, which clamped down on property taxes in California.
HEY NEVE! WERE YOU ABLE TO TRANSFER YOUR PROP 13 TO FRISCO COUNTY, YOU KNOW THE WAY SOME EMPTY NESTERS IN CALIFORNIA ARE ABLE TO DO? MMMM… BUT IF NOT, YOU’RE KIND OF GETTING SCREWED BY PROP 13 NEVE, IF YOU DIDN’T KNOW THAT ALREADY.
The result was immediate and disastrous.
WELL, IN YOUR OPINION, NEVE. AT THE TIME, NANAS AND POP-POPS WERE BEING FORCED TO SELL THEIR HOMES ALL OVER THE STATE DUE TO REAL ESTATE INFLATION. SO, IRL, THERE WERE WINNERS AND LOSERS DUE TO PROP 13. DON’T YOU KNOW THIS, NEVE? ISN’T THERE ANY NUANCE THERE BEWIXT YOUR EARS, NEVE?
Schools suffered, in particular, and only now is there a concerted effort to walk back some of the tax breaks for businesses, which are using the measure to game the tax system.
HEY NEVE, WHY NOT SUGGEST GETTING RID OF PROP 13 ALTOGETHER, IF YOU HATE IT SO MUCH?
Prop. 13 was supposed to be exciting, innovative and life-affirming.
UH, CAN YOU LINK TO THESE QUOTES, NEVE? I THINK YOU’RE JUST MAKING UP ADJECTIVES IN ORDER TO CLOSE YOUR BIT. HEY, CAN I GET A RULING HERE, EDITOR? HELLO, ED? ANYBODY THERE?
Instead, it was just the product of lazy, simplistic rhetoric. So is Prop. B.
HEY NEVE, WHO AT THE CHRONICLE IS LAZIER AND SIMPLER THAN YOU? SERIOUSLY. YOU DON’T DO ALL THAT MUCH WORK AND YOU’RE NOT THAT SMART, RIGHT?
This isn’t the Arab Spring, it is spring break. I’d worry about the hangover.
I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT NEVE. IF YOU WANT TO GET RID OF HEIGHT LIMITATIONS, THEN YOU SHOULD PUT THAT ON THE BALLOT. BY THIS POINT, POLS SHOULD KNOW IF THEY ABUSE THE VOTERS TOO MUCH, IF THEY PRESSURE THEIR APPOINTEES TO JUST IGNORE PRIOR VOTER RESULTS THEN THE VOTERS JUST MIGHT RISE UP AND TURN SOMETHING THAT WAS ADVISORY INTO SOMETHING MANDATORY.
WHAT COLOR IS THE SKY IN _YOUR_ WORLD, CW NEVIUS?