Prop F and Prop G; John McCain …

by on May 30, 2008

Dear Editor,

I’m confused by Grace Martinez’s comment that “Again, the proponents of Prop. F contradict what they set out to do. Its affordable housing income threshold prices out the families who make minimum wage.” The threshold for affordability is significantly lower in Prop. F than it is in the back-room deal negotiated by labor, ACORN, and SFOP, which would allow middle- and upper-middle class residents to qualify for “affordable” housing. We need more truly affordable housing for the working poor not for middle-income wage earners.


Donna Linden
San Francisco

To the Editor:

The positions contained in your recent guest editorial by ACORN (Bayview Residents — the Hidden Treasure by Grace Martinez, May. 29, 2008) strain credulity. The author admits that Prop. G is “a policy piece that guarantees little and overturns city zoning and subsidy caps that SF voters voted on 10 years ago,” and that, left to its own devices, it’s worth little to the community. But then she goes on to claim that somehow, with this last-minute endorsement of the labor unions and this so-called Community Benefits Agreement, Prop G magically becomes real.

What she fails to mention is that there was in fact a long community-based planning process for the Shipyard, reflected in numerous public planning documents, and which does have the support of the community. Unfortunately, the current Lennar plan runs roughshod over decades of community-based planning efforts in a desperate bid by the Mayor to compel the 49ers to remain in the city.

The choice before the voters is what’s on the ballot, and in this case the choice is clear: defeat Prop. G so that work can begin on a real plan with real community benefits (along with an EIR). As the writer correctly points out, change comes from educating people and then organizing them, not the other way around.

Steven Chapman
San Francisco

Dear Paul:

Thank You for the cogent book reviews. Though sounding better on global warming, federal spending and campaign reform, John McCain is no maverick, unless being a more belligerent, neo-con crusader in Iraq or Iran sets him apart from the discredited GOP extremists represented by Bush-Cheney. One fears a President McCain will galvanize more massive military resources and expertise than the bumbling Dubya to turn all international conflicts into battles — with sacrificed soldiers, guns and missiles. What would, for example, we gain to “bomb, bomb, bomb Iran” since that government lacks nuclear arms, only indirectly challenges our interests, and its population would be instantly unified if outside assaults removed Iranian installations?

And your inflated language should not go unchallenged: “McCain is making it a close presidential race, which means that he’s attracting independent voters who don’t approve of the Republican Party. The word needs to get out soon – or else McCain could easily become our next President.” Or else? Close? Easily win? In national polling over some weeks, Obama (and Clinton) already beat McCain and there’s not yet a Democratic nominee or sustained scrutiny of McCain’s fabricated image and serious problems with the Republican bases.

By the end of June, I predict Obama has a good lead and, as he’s shown against a candidate stronger than McCain, knows how to be a frontrunner and stay ahead. In this primary season, in which McCain nearly blew all his chances, Obama throughout looks the campaign and political veteran. Further, McCain’s gaffes, minimal expertise (or seeming interest) in election-critical economic matters, a very checkered, long establishment record, and eager slave to Bush’s least popular policies will likely
doom his candidacy.

Against a political “Rock star,” a term from conservative media czar Rupert Murdoch, who foresees an Obama win, McCain has an uphill fight. Indeed, by the Fall McCain may look as desperate and exhausted as Hillary does now.

Robert Becker
Mendocino CA

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