Some musings on the New Urbanist environment that is slurping up our Lifestyles

Excerpts from a Harper’s article:

” San Francisco is overrun by tech conjurers who are rapidly annihilating its remarkable diversity; they swarm in and out of the metropolis in specially chartered buses to work in Silicon Valley, using the city itself as a gigantic bed-and-breakfast.”

” By trying to improve our cities, we have only succeeded in making them empty simulacra of what was. To bring this about we have signed on to political scams and mindless development schemes that are so exclusive they are more destructive than all they were supposed to improve. The urban crisis of affluence exemplifies our wider crisis: we now live in an America where we believe that we no longer have any ability to control the systems we live under.”

“Wouldn’t we all love to put the urban improvement genie back in the bottle with a very tight cork!”, comment by Danessa Techmanski.

 

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How Sourdough Bread Is Helping People Eat Gluten Again

By Katy Severson : huffingtonpost – excerpt

There’s some magic behind the fermentation process.

If you’re sensitive to gluten, sourdough bread could be your new best friend.

Gluten is the most misunderstood substance of the new millennium, so demonized that even coffee, yogurt and body wash are labeled “gluten-free” as a selling point.

But we’ve been eating bread for some 100,000 years, so what accounts for the sudden, massive increase in gluten intolerance?

Marketing accounts for most of it: Eighty-six percent of Americans who think they’re gluten-intolerant aren’t. But it also has to do with the way we’re baking bread.

The invention of quick-rise commercial yeast has replaced the way we’ve baked bread since the beginning. But now, the rising popularity of sourdough bread is teaching us something: It’s easier to digest.

Sourdough has been a kind friend to our guts through the ages.

Before commercial yeast, or “baker’s yeast,” was popularized in the 1960s, we made bread with a sourdough starter. It’s a mix of fermented grain and water that collects the wild yeast that lives all around us in the air, on our bodies, and in the flour itself… (more)

StillFood

Bread and the local nature of it are the stuff of legends and poets. I was inspired to shoot this photograph  few years ago, after receiving a gift box of cheeses and tomatoes. Only thing missing is the glass of wine.

Elon Musk’s Flamethrowers Have Arrived

By Joe Kukura : sfweekly – excerpt

If case anyone doubts the human race (or at least the leadership) has gone maad, here is the proof you need along with a personal request. Please send us some of fictional (so far) scenarios for what could happen if you mix drones, auto-pilot cars, and flamethrowers with the criminal element on our streets. (In San Francisco we have regular mail and package thefts. Due to the lack of parking, delivery services just throw packages on the sidewalk and people comes along and grab them up. That could be the opening scene.)  Cartoons welcomed and encouraged. We promise to post if you want to share.

The first batch of Musk’s $500 flamethrowers are here, just in time for California wildfire season.

Maybe it provides some comfort to the 3,500 people just laid off at Tesla that their CEO has been engaged in a goofy flamethrower side project for the last four months. The first 1,000 of Elon Musk’s Boring Company handheld fire-shooting contraptions were distributed Saturday at Tesla Design Center in Hawthorne, CA. A total of 20,000 of these flamethrowers have been sold altogether, according to the product’s website

Musk claims on Twitter that regulations would not allow him to ship a product called a flamethrower, so he labeled it Not A Flamethrower. Others have labeled it a “cool toy for man-children with way too much disposable income.”… (more)

Thanks to all my talented readers and followers for inspiring me to go off on this site. It is a good respite from the political nightmares I am dealing with. To make it easy, if you have anything to share, just post it in the comments.

 

 

 

Protesters in San Francisco dumped a huge pile of scooters in the street and blocked 11 tech buses — and then things got tense

By Rachel Sandler and Katie Canales : businessinsider – excerpt

 

Activists piled scooters in front of buses and unfurled signs that said “Techsploitation is toxic.”

  • Anti-tech demonstrators in San Francisco blocked tech buses with piles of electric scooters.
  • They told Business Insider they were protesting tech companies’ using city streets to experiment and city officials’ increasing use of sweeps to force homeless people off the streets.
  • In total, a full intersection, 11 buses, and several cars were blocked for about two hours.

Anti-tech demonstrators in San Francisco on Thursday used piles of electric scooters to block shuttles ferrying Google and other tech company employees to work. The blockade was to protest what they see as the failure of the tech industry and lawmakers to address the city’s income inequality and sizable homeless population.

“What you’re seeing here is that scooters have more rights than people,” Chirag Bhakta told Business Insider. “Our priorities shouldn’t be people first, scooters second. We’re tired of being seen as an experimental playground for the tech industry.”…(more)

Gentrification and the corporate takeover of our cities by disruptive products and services is now complete. There is no product or service too dangerous or disruptive. Wait until Tesla’s flamethrowers get into the wrong hands. This seem like a bad idea at the start of fire season, but, the gun lobby likes them. A bill to restrict them was buried in committee.

Pick your conspiracy theory, but, you can’t ignore the takeover of our streets by Uber and Lyft. The day of the Tech v Tech bus protest, that received international coverage, we got news that Lyft is buying GoBikes. They are going head to head with Uber who just bought out another bikeshare Jump.

Tossing the tech scooters under tech buses was a brilliant statement about tech vs. tech. If you haven’t see this video yet you might want to watch this anti-gentrification direct action film, that covers SF and Oakland, among other cities around the globe, and share it with your friends and associates. https://sub.media/video/trouble-13-defend-the-block

RELATED:
Protesters toss scooters into street to block tech buses in SF

 

Say hello to the FBI mole inside the Trump campaign

By Jon Rappoport : opednews – excerpt

thevote

Well, you see, the mole wasn’t a spy, he was an informant. Aha. Let’s use a microscope to tell the difference.

The mole: Stefan Halper, a Cambridge professor.

Supposedly, Halper was gathering information for the FBI about a suspected Trump-Russia connection…

Glenn Greenwald: “…the CIA operative and FBI informant [Stefan Halper] used to gather information on the Trump campaign in the 2016 campaign has, for weeks, been falsely depicted as a sensitive intelligence asset rather than what he actually is: a long-time CIA operative with extensive links to the Bush family who was responsible for a dirty and likely illegal spying operation in the 1980 presidential election.”

But don’t worry. Nothing untoward is going on here. The FBI merely needed a man on the inside of the Trump campaign, to make sure Russia wasn’t exercising undue influence on the 2016 presidential election. Nothing more. No problem. Just ask the FBI. They’ll confirm this. The FBI high echelon is squeaky clean. They never lie… (more)

Everyone can draw your own conclusion on this one. The name and details are out in the media. If you are a scriptwriter, you might want to consider writing the script on this one. Don’t forget to change the names to protect the guilty.

If you are a writer and aren’t familiar with opednews, you may want to check it out as a possible publishing site for your work. Also consider medium. We are covering some of their stories that relevant to our elections and considering the options they offer writers.

The California Housing Crisis: Beyond SB 827

By Daniel Shimmy Li : medium – excerpt

In January 2018, Senator Scott Wiener introduced a bill that stirred up controversy and discussion across California. Here’s a summary of the first draft of Senate Bill 827, also known as the Transit Zoning Bill:

Senate Bill 827 would usurp certain local building restrictions for new construction near transit hubs, setting looser state standards instead. It would allow residential developers to skirt local rules on height, density, and parking — if their buildings are within a half-mile of a train or subway station

Although SB 827 was rejected in its first committee hearing in April, it’s important to analyze the discourse surrounding the proposed solution and the encompassing issue — the housing crisis. For this article, I’d like to spotlight the discussion on the most controversial idea proposed in SB 827: increased market-rate housing…

SB 827’s push for more residential development on land that only allowed single family homes, also known as upzoning, made it the most aggressive bill recently pitched in California to address the housing crisis. The San Francisco Planning Commission said the bill would have effectively upzoned close to 96 percent of city parcels. With an interactive map, you can see that large portions of LA, San Diego, Berkeley, and several other cities would have been upzoned…

Shift the Discourse

SB 827 may be dead, but it sparked national discourse and drew mainstream attention to the crisis of housing and development. More thoughtful and committed citizens have joined the conversation and have begun thinking about new directions to establish the fundamentals of a new community….

Though not necessarily the case for new home owners, most NIMBY opposition to development is rooted in simply being a good capitalist and defending one’s major asset…

Decommodifying housing simply means preventing housing from being treated as a commodity. The goal is to prioritize housing that is a place to live, not an investment vehicle or an asset to accumulate wealth…

Other bills are at the forefront of the conversation with elections coming up. With strategic decisions and demands, it is possible to lay the groundwork for a community-sustaining and democratizing transformative change…(more)

Special thanks to Jimmy Wu, Shrinu Sivakumar, and Magdalene Lim.

Who determines the capacity of a community? Many communities that set limits have been overruled by the courts, now our state representatives are trying to force more housing growth on us.

How do we protect the existing affordable housing ? The answer seems to rest on a need for protections for renters and small landlords and homeowners, who are all threatened by the privatization and corporate takeover of land and property by wealthy developers and financial giants.

Attempts to pit the landlords against tenants is showing signs of failing.

How do you move mountains of unwanted weed?

By Matt Stangel and Katie Shepherd : theguardian – excerpt

Reefer-Madness

We’ve come a long way baby. Reefer Madness poster photo by zrants.

Oregon farmers have grown three times what their customers can smoke in a year, causing bud prices to plummet and panic to set in

A recent Sunday afternoon at the Bridge City Collective cannabis shop in north Portland saw a steady flow of customers.

Little wonder: a gram of weed was selling for less than the price of a glass of wine.

The $4 and $5 grams enticed Scotty Saunders, a 24-year-old sporting a gray hoodie, to spend $88 picking out new products to try with a friend. “We’ve definitely seen a huge drop in prices,” he says… (more)

They need to get creative and turn it into paper or fabric or rope. There are many uses for fibers. There is also a growing medical industry that can use a lot of product.