Saturday, September 03, 2016

Conor Johnston: "Putting the planet over politics"

Conor Johnston's op-ed in the Examiner complains about the Sierra Club (SF Sierra Club puts politics over the planet):

They[Sierra Club] opposed Parkmerced, with 5,679 new homes and transit improvements for a car-dependent area once billed as “suburban living in The City.” Chapter leaders opposed the Treasure Island plan, with 8,000 new homes, the country’s first congestion pricing program, and acres of parks and wetlands.

Assuming this is true---the Sierra Club's website isn't helpful, since it's hard to even find its search function; when you do it still isn't helpful getting information on those projects---there are good reasons for opposing both projects, as I've pointed out here City study: Parkmerced project will degrade city's quality of life and here Another hate crime by D5 Diary.

How allowing 19,000 residents on Treasure Island---there are now 2,000---and more than 5,000 more housing units at Parkmerced, a part of town that's already near gridlock, can possibly be good for the environment has never been explained. 

Parkmerced will always be "car-dependent," since it's near the Southern border of the county, a reality that none of the "transit improvements" in that project can change. 

Yes, the Treasure Island project includes congestion pricing---future residents who want to leave the island in cars will have to pay for the privilege, including, presumably, future guests at the hotels that will be built on the island! (The idea of congestion pricing is very unpopular with the present residents of the city.)

Yet our Sierra Club leaders endorsed Kim over Wiener, just as they endorsed David Campos over David Chiu, and Breed’s opponent over her; not because the candidates are stronger on environmental issues — they aren’t — but because their politics better align on other issues.

Supervisor Wiener has always had a sketchy understanding of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the most important environmental law in the state. (See Scott Wiener, WalMart, and the Bicycle Coalition.)

And Johnston's boss, Supervisor Breed, apparently thinks creating traffic congestion on Masonic Avenue and filling in the Geary/Fillmore underpass will somehow be good for the planet. Maybe Johnston can explain how that will work in a future op-ed. 

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The FBI report on Hillary's email

Kevin Drum read the FBI report and here's his conclusion:

If you read the entire report, you'll find bits and pieces that might show poor judgment on Hillary's part. The initial decision to use one email device is the obvious one, something that Hillary has acknowledged repeatedly. 

Another—maybe—is her staff's view of what was safe to send over unclassified email. But this is very fuzzy. It could be that her staff knew exactly what it was doing, and it's the subsequent classification authorities who are wrong. This is something that it's impossible to judge since none of us will ever see the emails in question.

That said, this report is pretty much an almost complete exoneration of Hillary Clinton. She wasn't prohibited from using a personal device or a personal email account, and others at state did it routinely. She's told the truth all along about why she did it. 

Colin Powell did indeed advise her about using personal email shortly after she took office, but she chose to follow the rules rather than skirt them, as Powell did. She didn't take her BlackBerry into her office. She communicated with only a very select group of 13 people. 

She took no part in deciding which emails were personal before handing them over to State. She had nothing to do with erasing information on the PRN server. That was a screw-up on PRN's end. She and her staff all believed at the time that they were careful not to conduct sensitive conversations over unclassified email systems. And there's no evidence that her server was ever hacked...

Rob's comment:
Hillary is like most of us who use computers: She struggled to learn enough about the technology and the devices she used to do her job. She of course relied on others to set up her system. Unlike the rest of us, she and her staff had to also struggle with the government's baroque technology and classification system

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