Margaret Brodkin; CNN and Anderson Cooper; City Budget Solutions; State Bar and Manchester Hyatt; Republican Obstructionists; Municipal ID Law …

by on January 30, 2009

To the Editor:

The firing of Margaret Brodkin is typical of Mayor Newsom. If you don’t agree with him, you’re out the door. Years ago, I worked with Margaret at a community center. She is bright, creative and a good independent leader. The independent quality I believe is the problem in city government.

Barbara Austin


While I myself do not have children, I nearly always support bonds for schools and other tax increases to educate the future citizens of our city. I like to see the same or better opportunities afforded me passed on to future generations.

Can someone please explain how this is not a good move? We clearly do not have enough money in our budget. It seems that Ms. Brodkin’s new position at New Day for Learning Initiative is similiar to her previous position, but will be funded primarily by a private grant from the Mott Foundation, taking it off the city budget.

Maybe I am totally wrong. It also brings to mind in the new spirit of Obama’s contributing back to our community that Ms. Brodkin could also act as an advisor if she so chose, with volunteers in the city to continue her work. Sometimes when something is really good it can be done with people who want to make it happen, even when the financial resources are limited. I for one would be willing to volunteer to help continue her work and I could sacrifice a few hours of my time for the future of our city’s children.

Would Ms. Brodkin be willing to give some of her time to the programs in which she so passionately believes? I believe in her new position, if Ms Brodkin would be willing to help parents and citizens like myself to undertake this project she could do something very incredible. She could make a truly positive contribution to the youth of our city and be able to see the fruitation of her ideas. What an glorious accomplishment that would be.

I also can imagine that once such a project was started that other private foundations would come forward and contribute additional grants towards this effort. How about it, Ms. Brodkin? Can you envision it? What are your thoughts? I would be very interested on your opinion, and your willingness to participate on such a project.

Clay Barcus

To the Editor:

If you watched the CNN program further, you would have seen Democratic strategist Paul Begala successfully present the argument that putting resources in the hands of the poor and the unemployed is agreed by economists to be the most immediate type of stimulus because they put the money to work immediately instead of saving it.

On previous shows, Ali has been critical of the inclusion of the tax cuts in the plan as a not particularly useful measure just included to make Republicans happier. That didn’t indicate a “glorification” of tax cuts.

Anderson Cooper 360 always has a range of different people providing input, and Cooper actually listens to them, lets them talk and genuinely seems to be open to learning from them. That’s very unusual in American cable news these days, since it’s so filled with close minded show hosts and partisan blowhards who always appear to be just using their guests to set up their own talking points, rants and speeches.

There’s nothing wrong with questioning proposed plans from Obama or anyone else, unless you are unfair about it. Unlike you I actually watch 360 regularly, and I have not noticed any tendency for unfairness towards Obama’s proposals.

Todd Miller

To the Editor:

Instead of cutting services and/or raising taxes, why does nobody propose cutting salaries and benefits at City Hall? Both are generous by any standard and could be cut by 10% to solve damn near the entire deficit, if you could get the agreements of course. Hell, even if you only addressed total compensation over $100k/year you’d solve the problem without a single layoff and without losing a single vital service. It’s only fair that city workers and managers pay their fair share as the rest of us watch our incomes and assets plummet.

Dan Scherotter

(Re: “State Bar to Cross Picket Line at Manchester Hyatt”), youu cannot attend at that location … It just is not right. You can find another location … If someone that lives [in San Diego] has an idea on where this can be held instead, let the Bar Association know. Maybe someone can donate the space to offset the cancellation fee??

Richard Cortijo

To the Editor:

The Republicans’ stupidity is the best thing that we have going for us, besides Barack Obama’s brilliance. I hope they keep up the good work, so we can win even more seat next election!

Janice Brown

(Re: “Municipal IDs: SF Must Get its Act Together”), there is also some discrepancy between the city’s definition of a senior and the state’s. The state gives out FREE ID cards to seniors over the age of 62, the City says one has to be 65 to get one of these new ones for $5. Muni also makes a person wait until age 65 to legally use a senior bus pass. Aren’t these two things in violation of State Law, and doesn’t the city have to comply with state law? Do I smell a lawsuit?

Terrrie Frye
San Francisco

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