Monday, August 25, 2008

Alice B. Toklas LGBT Democratic Club

Alice B. Toklas Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Democratic Club

Candidate Questionnaire


Please return your completed questionnaire to
info@alicebtoklas.org as soon as possible. The deadline for receipt is Monday, September 1, 2008. On or before Wednesday, September 3, 2008, we will contact you by email regarding your interview. PAC interviews will be held on Saturday, September 6, 2008.

Name: Rob Anderson
Mailing address:
Email: rmajora@comcast.com
Phone:

OFFICE, CANDIDATE BACKGROUND AND EXPERIENCE

1. What office are you running for and, if applicable, in what district?
District 5 Supervisor

2. Are you a registered Democrat?
Yes

3. Are you lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender?
I don’t think that’s anyone’s business. I disapprove of this Balkanization of the electorate into identity groups.

4. What elected offices have you held?
None

5. What political clubs and/or community organizations are you most actively involved in?
None. My blog (http://district5diary.blogspot.com/) and my political campaigns are my primary involvement. Ordinarily, I would go to a lot more meetings, but for the last two years I’ve been the primary caretaker of my 92-year-old mother, which keeps me home in the evenings.

6. What are your two most significant political campaigns or experiences? Please discuss.
It so happens that I’ve run for District 5 Supervisor twice before, in 2000 and 2004. In 2000 Matt Gonzalez was the leading candidate. I tried unsuccessfully to get him and the other candidates interested in the homeless issue that year. A few years later, Gavin Newsom used the issue to become mayor of SF by capitalizing on progressive incomprehension and political negligence on an issue that city voters were clearly concerned about.

YOUR CANDIDACY

Why is the Alice endorsement important to your campaign?
It’s not necessarily important, but I would like to have it. After all I am a Democrat, and Mirkarimi is a member of the Green Party.

8. What endorsements for this office have you received to date?
None

9. How much have you raised to date and what is your total anticipated budget for your campaign?
I don’t plan on raising any money. If I spend any money, it will be my own.

10. What are your three most important qualifications for this office? Please discuss.
Why three? My most important qualification is that I’m not a San Francisco progressive. I’m completely unblinkered by the ideology that hobbles SF progressives, including my opponent, Ross Mirkarimi.

11. What are your three most important qualifications to represent the LGBT community in this office? Please discuss.
I have no intention of representing the LGBT community or any other particular group. If I don’t think a policy or proposal is good for the whole city, I won’t support it.

12. What are your top three priorities/objectives if you win this position? Please discuss.
“Three” again? I have no such list in mind. I’ll support Mayor Newsom’s approach on homelessness, since that’s his greatest policy success---perhaps his only one---thus far. And I’m very much concerned with the city’s aggressive development policies, led by a completely misguided Planning Dept. Supervisor Mirkarimi is terrible on development issues. He voted for the Rincon Hill highrise luxury condos; he’s pushing the destructive Market/Octavia Plan that will rezone more than 4,000 properties in the middle of the city to encourage more population density; and he’s taken the lead in surrendering the old extension property on Lower Haight Street to a greedy, predatory UC for a massive housing development---450 units on only six acres.

LGBT POLITICAL ISSUES

13. Do you support full equal marriage rights for LGBT Americans? Please discuss.
Yes. What’s to discuss? People should be able to get married if they want.

14. Do you support full equal immigration rights for LGBT Americans? Please discuss.
Of course

15. Do you support full employment non-discrimination for LGBT Americans? Please discuss
.
I oppose any kind of discrimination, but I don’t know what you mean by “full employment.”

16. Do you support repeal of the US military’s “Don’t Ask; Don’t Tell” policy? Please discuss.
Yes

17. What are the most important issues facing the transgender community and how should they be addressed? Please discuss.
How the hell should I know?

OTHER POLITICAL ISSUES

18. Do you support a woman’s federal constitutional right to reproductive choice? Would you support a candidate, measure or platform that was not explicitly pro-choice? Please discuss.
Yes and no. No one should force women---or girls, for that matter---to have babies.

19. What steps would you take to encourage more diversity in the electoral process, including increasing the involvement of members of the LGBT community, women and people of color?
Please list three---not two and not four---obstacles for the LGBT community, women, or people of color to participating in the political process. Just kidding! I don’t know of any obstacles to participation in the political process facing members of the LGBT community, women, or people of color.

Thank you very much for completing the Alice questionnaire.

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Dr. Pangloss---aka John King---strikes again

Above all John King wants to reassure his readers in the Chronicle that everything is going to be okay, that the awful buildings and developments springing up all over the city are going to be seen differently and win acceptance over time. He's already assured us that if you don't like the clunky new de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park you are a stick-in-the-mud, resisting "a splash of innovation in the staid local architecture scene." Anyhow, not to worry because, even if the de Young looks like warehouse with psoriasis, the building "will be filled with familiar art, wrapped in outdoor sculpture and vegetation."

King on the hideous new Octavia Boulevard: "Shrubs are filling in. Trees are spreading out. It's easy to imagine thick bands of greenery in five years that offer visual screens and a true sense of place. The small park has blossomed as well. You'll see people with dogs and people with cell phones...A street person can be napping on a bench while kids clamber on the play structure and life goes on." On the other hand, the boulevard still has more than 45,000 cars day coming through the heart of Hayes Valley, the dogs are crapping on the grass, and the "street person" King refers to is one of the many homeless who now like to hang out in the tiny little park next to all that freeway traffic.

King earlier this year on two restaurants on the waterfront: "With time, the fuss over Kuletoland will die down...As the young trees mature, the structures won't stand out so much. The shock of the new will fade."

King on the garish, ridiculous new Congregation Beth Shalom synagogue (above) at Clement and Park Presidio, which, remarkably, when you see it in person looks even worse than the picture accompanying his column: "I'm a big fan of the synagogue and its sculptural presence, imposing yet calm...So give the synagogue time. Today's half-pipe may be tomorrow's touchstone, funny nicknames and all." But the Giants and the 49ers need fans, not Chronicle readers worried about their city; they need someone to talk frankly about how and why a clueless city Planning Dept. is allowing our city to be debased by these new buildings.

King compares the eyesore synagogue to the Transamerica pyramid building, which was widely criticized when it went up more than 30 years ago. But even the Transamerica building is beginning to look good compared to many recent projects, like Octavia Blvd., the de Young Museum, the Rincon Hill highrises, and, even worse, the atrocious Intercontinental Hotel on Fifth Street. After a nice critique of that awful building---which even King/Pangloss admits belongs in Las Vegas---he strives to look on the bright side: "It could be a lot worse." Yes, after all is said and done, it's better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, isn't it? Well, no: Looking at this building is a lot like a poke in the eye with a big, ugly, turquoise stick.

But for John King over time all this shit will magically turn into ice cream in the best of all possible worlds.

The same Planning Dept. that brought us the Intercontinental Hotel will soon be bringing us more highrise buildings at Market and Van Ness under the Market/Octavia Plan. If you like the ugly Fox Tower and the 100 Van Ness building, you will surely like the four 40-story highrises being pushed by Supervisor Mirkarimi and our Planning Dept. Recall that it was Mirkarimi who rhapsodized about the awful new Octavia Blvd. when it opened three years ago ("a gateway to a new template"!).

This is the new San Francisco brought to you by the oh-so "progressive" vulgarians and philistines governing our city.

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