Week Two


Week two of blogging here in the books.

To paraphrase your most famous musical export, what a short strange trip its been so far.

I have to admit that it's taken me aback, the bizarre level of rancor aimed at a website by the same people that can't seem to live without it. And the even more incredible fixation on the inner workings of a modest media institution that doesn't pay your bills. It reminds me of the ladies at the local lavanderia completely absorbed in the telenovelas Mexicanas. They seem blissfully content to insert themselves into the lives of their onscreen heroes--here, it isn't bliss but irate irrationality.

And over what and whom? Tim Redmond? I've known Tim 19 years (and he isn't gonna like this, but fuck it): He isn't that interesting--in fact, he's kind of drab. A soccer dad that can't sing that once tried to convince me of the athletic prowess and brilliance of Alex Smith--you get worked up over THAT? 

The fixation over me, who cares? 

The source of the fury strikes me as plain and simple---people love having sunshine blown up their asses and neither of us care to fill that role. Let's face it--America, having no royalty or aristocracy invented one, our landed gentry. They play the part of kings and queens and when taken to task for arranging bailouts of their failures or creating sweetheart deals for themselves or having a symbiotic relationship with the people's stewards, the government, their admirers scream bloody murder. "Class warfare". Redmond thinks it's the nonsensical paradigm of "one day I too will be rich and I want to be able to keep all my money", I don't. I think it's more like people don't want to be reminded of who they really are and can't blame their paragons for their plight, so it's either people below them or the messengers (HELLO!) that remind them of their actual and not imagined place.

This is a nation where the top 1% made 121% of the gains in the anemic recovery. And you didn't and still identify with them. And don't seem to grasp that Atlas Shrugged was fiction.

I love this gig.

See ya tomorrow!




"The fixation over me, who cares?"

That's because you're so wonderful, Johnny!

Posted by Clint on May. 30, 2013 @ 10:16 pm
Posted by lillipublicans on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:25 am
Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 5:14 am

richer -- not just in the utterly practical sense regarding their relative wealth and buying power, but as a direct measurement of their net worth.

The recovery has not arrived for those who are on the bottom, but rather their economic malaise has continued to worsen. The middle class is still struggling to keep even. The uttlerly rich have gotten all the benefits which show up on paper as the "national recovery."

("superior") + ("internet prefix") + ("additional")

Posted by lillipublicans on May. 31, 2013 @ 5:46 am

not express himself clearly because a percentage of something (as opposed to something like a gain) cannot be more than 100%.

And writing clearly is surely what a journalist is supposed to do.

Whether the middle classes are poorer than 5 years ago is highly debateable, since most people won homes and have IRA's etc., both of which are worth a lot more now than then.

Income is just one side of the ledger.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 6:54 am

click the bleepin' link

Posted by PieterB on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:21 am

As noted.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:35 am

If you click the little linky in the same sentence as the figure "121%," it will take you to an article which explains how the figure was derived. Math is hard, but clicking is easy.

Posted by PieterB on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:19 am

little utility in following them. And I don't click on links if I do not know or trust the source.

The expression "121% of something" is incorrect.

Posted by anon on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:32 am

If you position your cursor over a link, the URL appears in either the status bar or as a protip popup. The only thing self-serving is your attitude.

Posted by PieterB on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:38 am

Of course this is possible.

For example, your boss could say "I raise your pay 121%!"

Or, for example, you could make 121% more than your co worker. It's possible.

Because math, while tricky, is also simple. %=numerator/denominator.

So yes, Virginia, there is more than 100%.

Don't ask me to do the match, of course.

Posted by TheBFCE on May. 31, 2013 @ 12:42 pm

But you cannot have A's portion of B as being more than 100%.

See the difference?

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:25 pm

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Posted by zdjecia ze smiesznymi kotami on Jun. 01, 2013 @ 3:06 am

As Peter Garret almost said, the rich get richer the poor get the pitcher.

Posted by SteveH on May. 31, 2013 @ 5:56 am

than if you start out with a hundred. That's hardly a remarkable discovery. It's just basic math.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 6:57 am

was a meritocracy?

In fact, starting position matters the most, plus the level of willingness of the participants to profit from exploited wage labor translates to the greatest gains.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:04 am

My point was that, once you have done that, the second million is much easier.

The fact that the rich get richer is mostly just a matter of statistics, like saying that number of apples you have is proportional to the number of apple trees you have.

"Exploitation" isn't relevant unless you are in indentured servitude. If you don't like your wages then quit and find something better. An employer who doesn't pay enough finds that their best people leave.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:17 am

If you don't like your wages then quit and find something better. . . um . . . wow . . . you are pretty clueless, aren't you?

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:35 am

Does that mean I am clever than you?

If you agree to work for $10 an hour, then presumably you are happy with that, since nobody forced you to take the job.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:47 am

Again, completely clueless. I won't even bother to explain it, you'll never get it.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:50 am

You're saying you are passive, vulnerable and helpless.

You're not, altho it may suit you to claim that.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:26 pm

your own experience.)

Tell a worker in the developing world to "quit and find something better" and await his reaction.

Corporate profits which feed your investment portfolio depend on labor and environmental exploitation (and central bank manipulation) despite your panglossian denial.

Hand to mouth.

Work or starve.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:39 am

As if you're a powerless victim in everything that happens to you.

Not everyone feels the same about that.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:48 am

You, however, are a sycophant and apologist for the elites. The ruling classes in every socioeconomic system have sycophants and apologists.
Unfortunately for thoughtful readers, those for the current regime have chosen to reside on these comment pages.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 4:40 pm

I think you're underestimating the notion that for many of us, baiting liberals is just good clean fun, and the "fury" and "rancor" you perceive is more likely your own unease at being refuted so deftly, so often. The real venom in the comments comes from your ideological comrades.

Great photo, by the way. It looks like you really were the Lindsey Buckingham of Boston punk.

Try to keep the posts to 1000 words or less this weekend, won't you? And of course, fight the power!

Posted by Chromefields on May. 31, 2013 @ 6:49 am

He wants attention but then complains when he gets it.

Masochist: "Beat me"
Sadist "No"

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:19 am

To do that, CF, you have to provide a counter argument that isn't larded down with name-calling and other "change the subject" ephemera.

And "baiting liberals" is asinine. The only thing that matters in politics is "what is best for the most people" not "I got a rise out of them, har har". The latter statement explains the American Right's ludicrous alliance with the same oil industry that drives up their taxes and fouls their air and water, because if "the libs hate the oil business", therefore, the oil business is good. (Ditto insurance companies, banks and unscrupulous developers.)

I play bass with a pick. Go figure. Lindsay is unapproachable as is Jeff Beck. The dude I am most like would be the soon to be late Wilko Johnson. 

Posted by JohnnyW on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:04 am

Heal thyself. This isn't politics; it's propaganda. You'd be better off taking your own advice. But you won't, because I suspect you're more comfortable in the echo chamber, with its cartoonish oversimplifications (about oil, for instance) and its rigid stereotyping (in the name of tolerance, of course). So, gentle mockery is the only rational response.

I was sincere about the pic, however, and your unorthodox style of playing, and agree with you about Beck/Buckingham being among the best to ever pick up a guitar. See, Johnny? Common ground!

Posted by Chromefields on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:52 am

It's best accomplished with that pesky shit, evidence.

Otherwise, it's evasive piffle whose actual aim is to change the topic.

Lindsay B on "Big Love" is the king of pickless.  

Posted by JohnnyW on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:58 am

I'd say it's best accomplished with insight and wit. A link to a Huffington Post op-ed is "evidence" only of one's ability to use software, and stringing together dozens of links in service of some tired old liberal broadside is the intellectual equivalent of fingerpainting.

Posted by Chromefields on May. 31, 2013 @ 11:13 am

you know you write in a provocative way? Haven't you been hired precisely for this reason - to shake the place up and try and generate some genuine two-way debate?

It's like Howard Stern complaining about controversy. If we all ignored you or nodded platitudes at you, you'd be bored shitless here.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 6:56 am

Read the piece again. It isn't controversy that surprises me, it's the idea that the SFBG would generate "insider baseball" among anyone.
If you ever met Redmond or the others, you'd understand (maybe you have?).

These are not exactly imposing, larger than life creations, ya know?

Posted by JohnnyW on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:07 am

He is kinda dweeby, I'll agree.

What was impressive was how, at the time, he managed to profess outrage at violations of journalist shield laws without mentioning Judith Miller. And it was right at the time when she was still in prison too.

I kinda lost respect for him then.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:28 pm

Yes, these trolls are full of vitriol with a capital V!

Give 'em, hell, as they used to say about Harry S. Trumen. Give im hell.

Posted by Allen on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:19 am
Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 7:31 am

still disagree with the SFBG view about punitively taxing the rich and throwing that money at everyone who isn't.

I might even personally gain from such a policy, but then lots of rich people vote for the Democrats as well, while the poor often vote GOP.

No, it is quite simply because I do not trust the government and it's bureaucrats. At best, they are incompetent. At worst, they are corrupt.

I'd rather stay wild and take my chances in the jungle, than be confined in an institution like a zoo, beholden to the guy in a uniform who feeds me at the same time every day.

Thought you wuz a wild man too, JAW.

Posted by anon on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:00 am

My reasons are different than yours.

The government represents the interests (for the most part) of the "non Johnny Angel's/Anon's" of the country. That this is such a wealthy nation that also is something like 40th in wealth inequality says to me (and should say to you) that our "trusted servants in DC"are actively working to the advantage of people nothing like us and to the complete detriment of people exactly like us.

This is as clearly as I can say it--minus the help of the Federal government, most of our economic ruling class would be selling gum on the TJ/SD border.

Posted by JohnnyW on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:11 am

the poor here are still better off than elsewhere. People like Gates and Buffett skew the figures for inequality in the US but that doesn't mean our poor are poorer.

If Gates and Buffett moved to Switzerland, we'd have more equality but it wouldn't help anyone.

Focus on economics, not envy.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:31 pm

Write an article about housing issues in SF. That will lead to the heart of the rancor. A city where so few people own their homes is naturally insecure.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:25 am

That's weird because, as far as I know, every home has an owner and so clearly there are enough people who can afford them for every property to be quickly sold.

If you were correct, there would be a high vacancy rate, and there is not. If you want to see that, go to Detroit where there are thousands of abandoned homes. You would have a point then.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 9:34 am

but there's an unusually low ratio of owners vs. renters.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 11:06 am

Maybe 2/3 renters? Which is about the same as NYC or London.

For the Bay area as a whole, which is a fairer comparison because then it includes suburbs as well like with other cities, I feel sure that more than 50% are owners.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:32 pm

...which you rent out makes it the tenant's home, not yours. You might want to look up possession in real estate law.

Posted by Hortencia on May. 31, 2013 @ 11:24 am

Until the owner decides to take possession.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:58 pm

be allowed to decide who lives in a property he owns?

It was precisely that unconstitutional restriction that led to the Ellis Act, which itself simply codifies a basic right of a property owner to rid himself of a tenant he no longer wants.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 2:10 pm

Should the landlord be able to deny because the prospective tenant is black? Gay? How far are you willing to go?

Posted by Hortencia on Jun. 03, 2013 @ 4:41 pm

Here's why I don't like you. I'm a landlord who voted for Avalos. I made consistent efforts for 10 years to be a good, charitable, politically liberal member of this community. Yet, the SFBG still feels it's fair to blame me for every single problem this City faces. Frankly, I'm tired of you guys shitting on me just because, back when you were in college, you invested yourselves in the strategy of manipulating the masses with distorted statistics and scapegoating anyone that doesn't agree with your philosophies 100%, and now your too inflexible to change your tactics even though they're obviously failing.

And, Tim might be dull, but being another obnoxious gay guy who runs around spouting every thought that passes through their mind isn't exactly novel in SF.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:13 am


Won't argue with "obnoxious". "Gay", no.

Were I a gay man, my life would be considerably less complicated. I wasn't that lucky. 

Posted by JohnnyW on May. 31, 2013 @ 10:39 am

You come off as really gay, Johnny. Yet, somehow, knowing you're straight makes you even more annoying. :)

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 12:31 pm

Obnoxious? Of course. Gay? Don't see it.

Posted by Guest on May. 31, 2013 @ 1:35 pm