My Barack Obama Problem

Photo: Pete Souza, Official White House photographer

Mark Naison: The straw that broke the camel’s back, after many disappointments, was the image of the President regaling a $2,500 a plate dinner in San Francisco while Occupy Oakland was being attacked by an army of police.

“Occupy” Occupies California’s Democratic Party

occupy oakland

Dick Price: If a meeting this past weekend between representatives from a half dozen Occupy encampments in California and perhaps 200 members of the California Progressive Caucus is any guide, the Occupy Movement has already tapped into older generations of progressive activists who are eager to support, leverage, and amplify the Occupyers’ ground-breaking work.

Occupy Wall Street: American as Apple Pie

crosby and nash

Those loud right-wing voices in our political discourse that are trying to make Occupy Wall Street look like something “foreign” to American culture are barking up the wrong tree. When David Crosby and Graham Nash recently showed up at Zuccotti Park for an impromptu sing-along with the protesters they linked OWS with the long American tradition of resistance to […]

The Rise and Fall of Leland Yee

leland yee

Randy Shaw: Leland Yee thought he had it all worked out. He moved to the left politically on labor and good government issues in preparation for the 2011 mayor’s race, and was positioned to embody the hopes of those seeking San Francisco’s first Asian-American mayor.

Second-Class Citizens

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Steve Hochstadt: I don’t understand why people who paid a commercial airline for a first-class ticket get their own line through official TSA security. Does TSA get more from them? Or are they better people, deserving of better treatment, by everyone, private or public, like other privileges of access that the rich get

Kucinich’s Next Quixotic Move?

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Paul Hogarth: Back in 2008, his second run for President – where he seemed a lot more interested in trumpeting his attractive wife – finally provoked a primary challenge, who raised the legitimate question of what Dennis Kucinich has done for his own district.

Why Won’t Cities Fight Real State Budget Cuts?

Jerry Brown

Paul Hogarth: While some may see Jerry Brown’s proposal as a “power grab” by the state that tells local governments how to spend their money, the truth is that it can prevent some devastating budget cuts that have been afflicting localities for years.

How Redevelopment Agencies Subvert Democracy

Randy Shaw: As mayors, developers and Agency staff try to fend off Governor Brown’s proposed transfer of redevelopment funds to local governments – earning far more media coverage than cuts to programs serving more vulnerable Californians – little has been said about the fundamentally undemocratic nature of redevelopment agencies.

California’s Humpty-Dumpty Law

humpty dumpty

Gautam Dutta: Although SB 6 is sitting on a wall, its Humpty-Dumpty election rules do not have to fall. In fact, the Legislature could have fixed SB 6′s defects last year – and it still has one last chance to do so before the courts decide SB 6′s fate.

The Ten Most Memorable Events of 2010

Randy Shaw: Obama Press Secretary Robert Gibbs’ August 10 condemnation of “the professional left” will prove memorable, because it confirmed suspicions that Obama had come to detest his progressive base and resented its criticism.

Sanctuary Cities and the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program: Two Things that Do Not Go Together

golden gate bridge

Michele Waslin: Despite the clear facts, radio-show hosts, politicians, and immigration restrictionists still want you to believe that cities receiving SCAAP reimbursements are providing “sanctuary” to criminals. Maybe next they’ll try to convince you immigrants are responsible for global warming and teenage obesity—wait, been there, done that.

French Protestors: “Where Are You Americans?”

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Steven Hill: “Where are you Americans? Why aren’t Americans out in the streets? If Americans are angry, why aren’t they out in the streets like we are?” He said something quickly to his comrades in French, then reverted back to English. “It’s like Americans have gone to sleep or something. You used to have many protests.”