Monday, September 12, 2011

City's on cruise control heading for the rocks

Photo by Luke Thomas

For every election campaign, the most robotically ideological candidate is dubbed "RoboProg." Quentin Mecke earned the first tag back in 2007, and Rafael Mandelman in 2010. (John Avalos is the front-runner this year.)

Mayor Ed Lee can be described as a "progressive" everywhere else in the country, but not in San Francisco, so the RoboProg tag doesn't fit. But he's on automatic on every single issue that our ruling "Family" sees as official city policy: the Central Subway, the Bicycle Plan and anti-carism in general, the pension "compromise," Parkmerced, Treasure Island, the Market and Octavia Plan, allowing UC to rip-off the old extension property on lower Haight Street for a housing development, the $248 million street bond, the bogus "preservation" of Japantown, and, as a good Democrat, of course he supports high-speed rail. Even Burning Man is now endorsed by Mayor Lee. It's all good!

Mayor Lee is already good at talking while saying little, with a degree of garbled syntax and grammar only matched in City Hall by Supervisor Mirkarimi. But he's a Walter Mitty-like figure, who, when he talks shows why he should have remained a bureaucrat. He's piloting the city onto the rocks, but he's doing it with civility! One wishes Chris Daly was still around to tell him to go fuck himself.  

The Murk and Mayor Lee teamed up in Japantown for some vintage flab-gab early in the year, and when what they were saying was intelligible it was nutty. We must "preserve" Japantown, even though only 10% of its residents are of Japanese ancestry!

Lee displayed his talent for garbled hot air in the Bicycle Coalition's questionnaire, even though candidates have time to go over their answers before they submit them to Big Nurse Shahum:

Since the lifting of the injunction against the bike program[sic], implantation[sic] of the program has received priority at the SFMTA. I am committed to identifying ways to ensure that we can continue to provide quality bikeways throughout our city in addition to identify[sic] additional funding for our current maintenance backlog with existing programs.

Thanks for clearing that up, Ed.

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