Friday, April 27, 2012

Randy Shaw to Mirkarimi: Get lost

Randy Shaw and the Chinese Community

It's strange reading Randy Shaw's recent analysis in BeyondChron that almost gloats about the plight of the Bay Guardian and Ross Mirkarimi, even as Shaw continues to brandish the Guardian's "Best Local Website" commendation on its front page:

It is a striking confluence: amidst reports that the San Francisco Bay Guardian (SFBG) will soon be sold, Ross Mirkarimi, its favorite politician, is desperately trying to save his Sheriff’s job. Both have caused their own problems.

On Mirkarimi:

Mirkarimi’s actions toward his wife caused his initial problems, which he then compounded by a counter-productive media strategy that he still pursues. Had Mirkarimi come clean about his conduct right from the outset, he would have retained his Sheriff’s job and avoided the soap opera that has engulfed his life.

This analysis follows Shaw's unsupported earlier concern that having to vote to remove Mirkarimi from office imperil's other "progressive" supervisors running for re-election this year. Like Mayor Lee---and the SF Chronicle!---Shaw was hoping that Mirkarimi would just go away and die. The idea that he could have "come clean" in the beginning and walk away from the problem is fanciful, since exactly what happened between Mirkarimi and his wife and whether it amounts to official misconduct is still in dispute.

Shaw on Mirkarimi as supervisor:

Let’s be clear about Ross Mirkarimi’s history as a Supervisor: he consistently voted with fellow progressives, and sponsored some important legislation such as the restrictions on plastic bags.

Plastic bags? Shaw doesn't mention Mirkarimi's role in promoting both the awful Market and Octavia Plan and allowing UC to hijack the old extension property on lower Haight Street---both projects much more important to San Francisco than plastic bags---because BeyondChron, the Bay Guardian, and our "progressive" supervisors were/are complicit in these bad projects, both based on the dumb "smart growth" theory that's so fashionable now in prog planning circles.

Shaw on the relationship between Chris Daly and Mirkarimi:

But to paraphrase Chris Daly’s frequent public critique of Mirkarimi, he never did the “heavy lifting” for the city’s progressive movement. After spending four years working alongside Matt Gonzalez, Daly never established a close working relationship with Mirkarimi when he replaced Gonzalez in 2005.

What "heavy lifting" politically did Daly do, with or without Gonzalez? Like to hear some specifics on that. And who did Daly have a "close working relationship" with?

Shaw is rewriting city history here, but some of us remember incidents like the pot club fiasco, when Shaw and his then-ally Chris Daly resisted any regulation of the city's pot clubs. When Mirkarimi proposed lowering the amount of pot that could be purchased at a club at one time from one pound to half a pound, Shaw wrote a demagogic piece packed with blind quotes accusing Mirkarimi of undermining medical marijuana and endangering AIDS patients.

Shaw likes to think of himself as a defender of the oppressed people of color in the city:

The SFBG never adjusted to San Francisco’s increased wealth and changing racial and ethnic demographics, and was particularly disconnected from the city’s growing Chinese-American community.

I've written before about Shaw's sense that apparently only he understands people of color in SF, whether they are misunderstood Arab terrorists, black people, or of Asian descent. Shaw even accused the Guardian of racism when it failed to endorse a non-white candidate for supervisor a few years ago.

Shaw supports Mayor Lee and is so "connected" to the Chinese community that you won't find any criticism in BeyondChron of the awful Central Subway project, which seems to be the main contribution---more like a millstone---to the city by that community.

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