Articles by Randy Shaw

About Randy Shaw

Randy Shaw is the Director of San Francisco's Tenderloin Housing Clinic and the Editor-in-Chief of the online daily newspaper "Beyond Chron." He is the author of three books, "Beyond the Fields", "The Activist's Handbook", and "Reclaiming America".

Obama’s Defining Moment

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Randy Shaw: President Barack Obama has a chance to define his presidency and vindicate the ideals of his 2008 campaign by one decisive act: issuing an Executive Order granting legal status to millions of undocumented immigrants.

How the Media Promotes Failure

Negative Media Coverage

Randy Shaw: By focusing on failures while ignoring successes, the media is working hand in hand with the conservative opponents of effective government.

How Tech Became Hip

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Randy Shaw: Once upon a time not so long ago, the best minds of the younger generation left college to join nonprofit organizations working to improve communities, nations and the world. Today, the idealistic techie hipster is heading toward tech.

The Next U.S. War Should Target Poverty

Obama Targets Poverty

Randy Shaw: On issue after issue—education, housing, health care, transportation, student debt—the American people are being shortchanged because Beltway wisdom says that the U.S. cannot “afford” solutions.

Donald Sterling Confirms Race Still Matters

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Randy Shaw: Donald Sterling is a racist who has no business owning an NBA team. Yet he was allowed to do so by the same passive approach to racial bias that has become business as usual in much of the nation, and particularly in the world of sports.

How the Media Protected Leland Yee

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Randy Shaw: By carefully serving the political agendas of both the left and right, Leland Yee enjoyed a remarkable political run. And having watched him get away with so much for decades, I was only surprised that he was finally caught.

From Crimea to Clearwater, It’s All Obama’s Fault

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Randy Shaw: I’ve been disappointed in the Barack Obama Presidency, but the relentless attacks on him are disconnected from reality.

Media Up to Old Tricks in de Blasio Bashing

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The media now defines Mayor de Blasio as a well-meaning, idealistic good doer whose lack of acumen has put him at the mercy of Governor Cuomo.

11 Political Predictions for 2014

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California Political Predictions — California ballot initiatives could boost progressive change, with intriguing races for state offices.

Who Speaks for Tech?

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Tech World — I challenge anyone to offer evidence that San Francisco’s tech sector is more hostile to homeless people.

The Media Crap Shoot: Mandela’s Death Elbows Aside Fast-Food Worker Protests

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Fast Food Worker Protest — Building campaigns through organizing rather than protests avoids unforeseen emergence of competing stories.

Progressives Have No Reason for Pessimism

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Randy Shaw: The real message of the Obamacare website delay is that in the age of the Internet and social media, the traditional media still has the capacity to create and sustain a false political narrative—and to get progressives to believe it.

President Kennedy’s False Legacy

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Randy Shaw: The 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s November 22, 1963 assassination reminds us of how thoroughly myth has overtaken the facts in his legacy.

Want to Increase Homelessness? GOP Plans New Affordable Housing Cuts

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Randy Shaw: House Republicans are planning to again play Scrooge. In this case, it means turning their backs on the housing needs of millions of ill-housed and homeless

Progressives Must Regain Control of the National Political Debate

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Randy Shaw: Progressives have the public on their side, and can readily put the GOP on the defensive. But this requires promoting and mobilizing around the issues that energize progressives and a public majority, not constantly playing defense on issues framed by opponents.

What All Progressive Campaigns Can Learn from the Marriage Equality Movement

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Randy Shaw: As many despair over U.S. politics moving backward on poverty and inequality, the marriage equality movement’s remarkable success deserves greater attention.

The Latest Trend: Ignoring the Federal Govt’s Anti-Poverty Role

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Randy Shaw: The longer homelessness and family poverty continues, the more their true causes are forgotten or ignored. Such is clearly true with the nation’s homelessness and affordable housing crisis.

West Coast, East Coast: The Shrinking Local Electorate

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Randy Shaw: It’s time to end the de facto voter suppression caused by local election cycles that most voters ignore. Ballot initiatives — put up for vote during state and national election cycles — should be used to put an end to this once worthy but now undemocratic political process.

Did Federal Shutdown Boost Immigration Reform?

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Randy Shaw: Will Tea Party Republicans let Boehner hold a vote on Obama’s top priority issue — immigration reform — or will their increased post-shutdown animosity toward the President prevent such action?

Unions Can’t Boost Middle-Class If Tenants Left Behind

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Randy Shaw: With rents steadily rising, can unions boost the state’s middle class if tenants are left behind?

O’Neill-Reagan Relationship No Model for Effective Governance

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Randy Shaw: Chris Mathews describes Tip O’Neill as a tough Irish politician, but the genuinely nice Boston backroom dealer proved no match for a former Hollywood actor who was only sincere when helping the wealthy and demonizing the poor.

Governor Jerry Brown Surprises Us Again

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Randy Shaw: Brown retains his stubbornness on prison and state fiscal issues, but in his strong support for addressing income inequality he has surprised Californians again.

De Blasio, Syria, AFL-CIO: America’s New Direction?

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Randy Shaw: Collectively, grassroots activists have had quite a week. And those still on the sidelines should consider legendary organizer Fred Ross Sr.’s advice: “strike while the iron is hot!”

Obama Saving Boehner’s Bacon?

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Barack Obama: Instead of doubling down on marginalizing Boehner’s unreasonableness to secure a House vote on immigration reform, the President threw him a life raft — and emboldened GOP House opposition to all of Obama’s domestic priorities.

Did the Occupy Movement Actually Happen?

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Randy Shaw: Even its critics thought the Occupy movement raised important questions about dramatically rising income inequality in the United States. And that’s why I doubt Obama would be considering Summers if the Occupy movement were still dominating the public debate.

Will New York City Finally Elect a Progressive Mayor?

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Randy Shaw: Bill de Blasio’s “tale of two cities” campaign message has resonated with voters upset by the city’s steadily growing wealth inequality and staggeringly high cost of living.

Are We in a Golden Age of Activism?

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Randy Shaw: I have always believed that successful activist campaigns provide a roadmap for future struggles. But the mainstream media rarely credits activists’ movements with winning struggles against big moneyed interests. This has left many activists unaware of these victories and unable to use the lessons of these successes to their own struggles.

Who Will Win Town Hall Immigration Battle?

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Randy Shaw: The future of immigration reform could well to be decided in the next three weeks. And this will occur not in the halls of Congress but in Congressional Town Hall meetings across the nation.

Opposition Grows to AT&T’s Attack on LifeLine Program

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Randy Shaw: AT&T’s proposed hijacking of the LifeLine program is particularly surprising in light of Democratic Party control of the California Legislature and the Governor Brown-appointed California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC’s) strong opposition to AB 1407.

Vassar Sends a Message

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Randy Shaw: Thank goodness there are still college presidents like Vassar’s Hill, whose school not only reflects a commitment to socioeconomic diversity, but who is willing to speak the truth on a subject many college presidents refuse to honestly address.

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