Saturday, August 09, 2008

Mirkarimi's coattails

Now that the registration deadline for candidates is past, let the pontificating and horse race reporting begin! The Chronicle apparently felt obligated to do a story the day after the deadline that included this abbreviated account of the District 5 race for supervisor:

District Five: Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, who faces Rob Anderson, should be able to keep his seat. What's at stake: Mirkarimi, who backs a ballot measure to explore public power in the city, will show whether he has coattails. Mirkarimi, who represents the Western Addition and Haight-Ashbury, is rumored to be gunning for board president in January.

Public power needs Mirkarimi's coattails in ultra-progressive District 5? Hardly. And Mirkarimi "should" keep his seat? Of course he'll win the election. The only question is the size of the protest vote against the Murk's brand of progressivism, which includes a blank check for whatever the SF Bicycle Coalition wants to do to our streets and an outright endorsement of Critical Mass; approval of luxury highrise condos on Rincon Hill; approval of the awful Market/Octavia Plan (including four more highrises at Market and Van Ness); leading the city's shameful surrender of property on lower Haight Street zoned for "public use" for 150 years to a predatory UC for a massive housing development; helping David Tornheim in his misguided attempt to "save" the derelict and undistinguished Harding Theater on Divisadero, which, more than three years later, is still an eyesore in the heart of the Alamo Square business district.

Mirkarimi talks like a revolutionary, but on development issues he often votes like a Free Market Republican.

Except on the Harding Theater and, perhaps, on the proposed Whole Foods market at Haight and Stanyan, which Mirkarimi ostensibly supports. But supporters of that project claim that so far he has been unhelpful at best and, at worst, a behind-the-scenes opponent in deference to Calvin Welch and the Haight Ashbury Neighborhood Council (HANC). The Haight needs a supermarket badly, and Whole Foods would be a perfect fit for both the neighborhood and that Haight/Stanyan property.

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