Mission nonprofit seeks to buy historic Redstone Building to keep tenants in place

By Laura Waxmann : sfexaminer – excerpt

The Mission Economic Development Agency is seeking to purchase the Mission District’s more-than-a-century old Redstone Building after its owner put it on the market earlier this year, placing its nonprofit and artist tenants at risk of displacement.

Formerly known as the Redstone Labor Temple, the historic building at 16th and Capp streets once served as the organizing hub for city unions and now houses over a dozen community groups and many independent artists.

MEDA, a nonprofit Mission District housing developer, is currently involved in negotiations with longtime landlord David Lucchesi over a potential purchase of the building in an effort to retain it as a community resource.

“The Mission cannot afford to lose this vital asset, so we are currently exploring public and philanthropic financing options — contingent on ongoing feasibility studies of the property and feedback from tenants — so that MEDA can preserve the Redstone for our community,” MEDA Senior Project Manager Feliciano Vera said in a statement on Monday…(more)

This is the story in all gentrified cities. Out with the old and in with the new money. Is it any wonder America has turned to “fake news” and comedy for relief?

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Pioneering machine artist Kal Spelletich is being evicted: Help save his robots!

By Marke B. : 48hills – excerpt

kal

The teacher and inventor who brought robots and flamethrowers to Burning Man must leave his home and studio of 25 years.

“On a troubling note, after 25 years, I am getting evicted from my home base and studio space,” artist Kal Spelletich tweeted this morning. “I provided housing and/or studios for countless artists, freaks, traveling activists, and radical journalists. Save Kal’s Robots here:  Thank you thank you Thank You”

So much of Bay Area arts culture is indebted to Kal, from Survival Research Laboratory shenanigans like giant fire-spewing robots (he was the first to bring both robots and flamethrowers to Burning Man) and interactive machine art that helped pave the way for today’s creative developments, to constantly helping and hosting artists (he teaches at the SF Arts Institute) and causes like Green Party fundraisers, Streetopia, and so many more … well, this just sucks… (more)

Kal is probably being evicted to build a new art school facility or student housing for such. That is what San Francisco real estate has turned into. Dog eat Dog or Demolish the Old and Rebuild it again for the next artist sucker, who will have a limited time before they go the way of Kal. The lesson in this game is buy what you can afford and don’t get attached to anything you don’t own. I only hope it is better somewhere else because it sucks here.

 

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

 

Summer of Love lost on those living in Summer of Discontent

By Caille Millner : sfchronicle – excerpt

In our Summer of Discontent, what can we learn from the Summer of Love?

Since the Summer took place before I was born, I have no nostalgia, passions or bad memories about anything that happened in San Francisco in 1967.

I can tell that for some people it was a seminal event, judging by the extent of attention I’ve seen around the 50th anniversary. There have been at least 10 Bay Area museum exhibits celebrating some aspect of the Summer of Love this year. There have been endless free concerts, tours and tie-dyed public posters. There’s been even-more-extensive-than-usual glorification of the Grateful Dead.

I appreciate how all of this is an opportunity for a segment of Bay Area Baby Boomers to indulge in youthful memories of the good times. (Have fun, kids!)

But for those of us far too young to have been there, the Summer of Love has never felt as far away as it does in 2017.

On my way to the de Young Museum’s “Summer of Love Experience” exhibit, in Golden Gate Park, I traveled through the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood. My misgivings began there.

San Francisco’s advanced state of economic inequality and neighborhood gentrification have led to strange street-level juxtapositions all over town. But the Haight is still a special place; these juxtapositions maintain a hard edge…

Continue reading “Summer of Love lost on those living in Summer of Discontent”

Mayor Ed Lee – Support the 50 year Anniversary of the Summer of Love

Open Letter to the Mayor of San Francisco:

fp2

Mayor Ed Lee,

So far this concert has had more interference than Super Bowl and it is coming from City Hall. You wasted no time in supporting big sports events that close down major sections of the city for days at a time and cost the taxpayers and small businesses millions of dollars. Why not support a free concert that celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love festival when the world needs Peace and Love now more than ever?

Where are all those liberated people who filled the streets with protest when Trump was elected who marched for women’s rights, LGBT rights, human rights and peace? Where are the protests and support for a free music event that celebrates the movement that started it all? Are we so jaded that we forgot all those who fought for our freedom and sanctuary status? Why are there no new protest songs on the top 40 list?

Does San Francisco only support events that involve millions of dollars and walls and fences in SF while protesting Trump’s wall with Mexico? Get with it Mayor Lee. Dig out your 60’s gear, peace signs and pipes and lead the parade for the Summer of Love, or at least kick it into high gear now.

Concerned Citizen of the world

The right to remain

By Rupa Marya : 48hills – excerpt

Thanks to capitalism, the rate of change of culture now does not let deep roots settle–anywhere. But it doesn’t have to be that way

This story is about a place that once was in San Francisco, but it could be anywhere in the world. We watched the phenomenon in Pinellas Park in the 1980’s and now we see it everywhere. It is important to remember where we came from and this is a special place that deserves recognition. This is the story about the capitalist society that eats its own.

Seven years ago, on a weekend like this past one, we would be sitting at The Revolution Cafe in the Mission district. All day. Until about 3am. It was highly unproductive and totally productive. Listening to live music, greeting friends who stopped by. It was the place so many of us would migrate to in the middle of our weekend and then get stuck at as a revolving crew of musicians would show up before gigs, after gigs, and take up the microphone and drop some wizardry down.

Conversations would strike up between unlikely folks, all sitting on the wooden benches that local John Kyle built, before the benches themselves were evicted. We were undocumented, we were hungry and totally full. We were vibrating with a certain cultural evolution that only happens when people have time and space and density to rub up against one another. We were teachers, artists, writers, social workers, librarians, janitors, doctors, students, musicians, seekers, dreamers, busboys, hairdressers, flight attendants, travelers, filmmakers, wanderers. We were bilingual, trilingual, quadrilingual even. Highly unproductive. And pulsing with possibility…(more)

Looking for a story

I know there are a number of writers who are getting these messages and now I need some help from you.

The big story is how Beaux Arts was one of the first cultural institutions to be shut down. Your shutdown came about early but the damage and the shutdown of arts and culture is now universal. San Francisco culture is pretty much on life support. More on that later.

I have my theories on why Beaux Arts was one of the first, but, you who stayed there should be better qualified to answer that question. How do you explain a city that kills the independent artists at Beaux Arts and embraces the international fame of Dali? Or did I just answer my own question? Is it all about embracing money and fame?

Maybe someone has already written this story. If so let me know. Our concerns about the culture are much broader than just art and creative endeavors.

What spurred this request is my concern that San Francisco’s fresh produce stands in the Mission District and most of our ethnic neighborhoods are at risk due to the extreme anti-car policies that are making it difficult to deliver fresh produce.

I was shocked by the lack of fresh produce stands that were left in St. Petersburg the last time I was there. Does anyone know how they disappeared? I would like to know if any of the issues that killed yours are at play in San Francisco. We are literally looking at a fresh food deprivation situation that is being exacerbated by the anti-car mania at City Hall. Eliminating produce shops in San Francisco will kill the small farms that are providing the produce to them. This also applies to the cafes and restaurants serving local food that San Francisco is famous for. Killing our traditional food sources would usher in a new wave of formula retail that many neighborhoods are fighting against.

For anyone who is not aware, the Interior Department threw out a huge Oyster Farm that reportedly supplied 40% of California’s fresh oysters, claiming that the farm was an environmental hazard to the area. Oysters clean the water. They do not soil it. Now the state is considering how to “develop” the area. Across the street from the Oyster farm there is an organic beef farm. Wait till they close that. Less organic beef will drive the costs of beef up. During a drought, the ocean side grass grows because of the fog. No need to irrigate. Perfect place to produce food. This is why many people around the area are up in arms with the government.

I am working with SF merchant groups to warn people and we are hoping to turn that around during the next election. Many of us feel this is the last stand. In November we either win or lose the heart and soul of San Francisco.

We have many examples and sites about the vestiges of our fading San Francisco culture, and the fight to salvage it, but the following video by a New Yorker explains our situation really well:

Just watch a few of the first minutes of this video if you don’t have time to watch any more. He goes into a lot of economic theories etc. later in the tape if you are interested and have the time.

https://zrants.wordpress.com/2016/04/14/douglas-rushkoff-deconstructs-the-digital-economy/

Douglas Rushkoff Deconstructs the Digital Economy

New Yorker writer who used to come to San Francisco for respite from the Wall Street rat race comments on how tech has sucked the soul out of San Francisco.

Douglas Rushkoof : 92Y (video) part of the transcript below…

In my early writing days I would go to SF to find out what‚s happening next and get this sort of spiritual, deeply humanistic recharge and then come to New York and argue why all these great things are going to happen and how human potential is gonna∑ and I would be arguing against publishers who would just laugh me out of the room.

I remember my first book on San Francisco internet culture, it got canceled in 1992 because the publisher thought the internet would be over by 1993 when the book would come out. And they saw those crazy San Francisco people and their peace and love stuff.

And I was out there for a week, and there was really not a vestige of that sensibility. If anything it felt to me, this New Yorker was going to San Francisco to remind them of the humanity underneath these technologies and the possibility for peer to peer interaction and all that. And it is strange.

And now I come back to New York and you would think, oh here it‚s this New York thing and we are in the Bloomberg Bubble and all, and∑ it‚s very relaxing for me. It‚s a strange sort of homecoming. And you would think, this is Wall Street, that this would be the more severe place. And it‚s actually the opposite. And I don‚t know quite how I‚m going to deal with that.

I guess I should be glad I didn‚t move out. I stayed and you know if you wait long enough, you end up in the human place∑

What‚s going on there, it‚s in the title of the book. it was really crystallized by my twitter stream when I saw that people were laying in front of the buses that Google was using to transport its workers from San Francisco to the Google place down in Mountain View… (more)

– Douglas Rushkoof

***

More later. Just need some help figuring this out. What are root causes are to fight the cultures we love. All Theories welcome.

Mari