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Thursday, July 7, 2016

Millennial Problems: Myth-busting

Posted By on Thu, Jul 7, 2016 at 11:45 AM

DFID/FLICKR
  • DFID/Flickr
Here are some words not often paired with “millennial”: wise, dedicated, investment-savvy. And you thought all those kids were just complainers.

Credit Karma, the San Francisco company that provides free credit scores and financial advice, recently released results of its survey of 18- to 34-year-olds on everything it means to be a grownup who contributes positively to society. The results destroyed many of the generalizations about millennials, giving us a lot of hope for the future. Per Credit Karma:

“They are getting married and buying homes and cars in large numbers. Urban, suburban and rural 18-34 year-olds are starting families and using credit cards. They collectively carry more student debt than any generation before, but that is not stopping them from moving forward with their lives and saving for the future.”

That’s pretty interesting, but let’s take a closer look at the results.

Not only do millennials view marriage favorably — 83 percent of respondents plan to tie the knot, while nearly 50 percent were already married or living with a partner — they think little ones are cool too. A whopping 74 percent either plan to have children or already make diaper runs and attend parent-teacher conferences. The marriage findings were similar for urban, suburban, and rural millennials.

And when those kids are growing up, millennials want it to be in their own home. There was no difference between millennials who currently own versus rent their home (44 percent each), but of those who rent, 88 percent eventually want to buy something. How they will do that depends largely on where they live (sorry, Bay Area millennials), because increasing their debt is a nonstarter. Lessons learned from 2008, when the world sorta imploded.

We always hear that millennials are afraid to leave the comforts of their parents’ home, but apparently we were listening to the wrong people. Of those surveyed, 58 percent had purchased a home before age 26. Dang, that’s smart.

So what about jobs? That’s where millennials let their emotions dominate, right? Idealism and a mission to make the world a better place get in the way of sensible career-building. And that whole “I just graduated from college so I’m the bestest at everything”? Just another stereotype.

Sure, only one-quarter of those surveyed wanted to have the same job for eight or more years, but a full 70 percent of older millennials (29 to 34) spent four or more years with the same employer. That’s impressive when considering how few total working years they’ve had. And among younger millennials, 63 percent want to stay in their jobs for more than four years. Experience counts.

As for their twilight years, when Social Security will have become a Smithsonian Museum exhibit, millennials are not messing around. Over half are saving for retirement, and 89 percent of them started doing so before age 28. And why are they doing this? Because their parents’ and grandparents’ generations screwed them royally and they know it — 62 percent believe Social Security insurance will be gone by the time they need it, and nearly 75 percent said the Great Recession had a moderate to extreme influence on their financial outlook.

There you have it: millennials are smarter than you. That must account for why they’re leaving the traditional tech job centers like the Bay Area for the Silicon Valleys of the future. We hear Nashville has a good music scene. 
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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

City That Spends Millions Criminalizing Homeless Might Criminalize More Homeless

Posted By on Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 4:46 PM

Left, Mark Farrell. Right, his nemesis.
  • Left, Mark Farrell. Right, his nemesis.

Look: San Francisco is rich. It may not necessary feel that way while walking down any number of potholed streets strewn with detritus (and that's a nice euphemism), but S.F. is filthy loaded. We have $9.6 billion in the coming annual budget, buddy. That's Baltic nation status

That could be one reason why it's NBD the city spends $20.6 million a year on sending police and other city agencies after our 6,500-plus homeless population whenever they violate one of the currently 36 "quality of life" laws on the city's books. (Why public complaints about the homeless and violations of laws aimed at the homeless have risen more than 35 percent since 2013, in a time frame when the homeless population increased only 16 percent, according to the city's Budget and Legislative Analyst, is less certain.)

Nationally, there's been an increase in laws aimed at curbing homeless activity — and yesterday, Supervisor Mark Farrell and three other elected officials proposed one more.

This fall, Farrell — along with Supervisors Katy Tang, Malia Cohen, and Scott Wiener, the latter of whom is trying to be elected to state Senate — will ask voters to enhance the city's existing ban on sidewalk tent encampments, which could then be removed with 24 hours, by — you guessed it — the police, as the San Francisco Examiner reports.

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Monday, May 9, 2016

Report: Super Bowl 50 Netted City a Whopping $792,000

Posted By on Mon, May 9, 2016 at 12:33 PM

super_cost.jpg

Remember Super Bowl 50? The world's best-marketed sporting event — the few hours of football squeezed around the most expensive commercial messaging in America — brought 1.1 million strangers to San Francisco, shut downtown streets for about a month, and led to an awful lot of kvetching. 

The Super Bowl also brought in some money to the city and county of San Francisco: after hotel and sales taxes were computed, and after the cost to police, traffic managers, and other city services were deducted, the Super Bowl netted us $792,000, to be exact, according to a City Controller report released today.

That's good news, in a way — at least the city didn't lose money. But that's also not exactly a financial windfall — and it would appear to be well below the promises that the city would "reap millions of dollars" made by the Super Bowl Host Committee as recently as January. 

The game's critics on the Board of Supervisors, at least, are leaping upon this as a prime "I told you so" moment.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Did Gurbaksh Chahal Buy a Posse (From a San Jose Sikh Temple)?

Posted By on Tue, Apr 26, 2016 at 2:22 PM

TWITTER/EVANSERNOFFSKY
  • Twitter/EvanSernoffsky

Beleaguered social media-friendly tech CEO Gurbaksh "G" Chahal was in court on Friday to answer charges that he violated the terms of his probation for a 2014 domestic violence charge a few months after it was imposed. (The alleged victim is overseas and is not returning to the United States to testify; an exhausted judge on Friday continued the hearing to May 17.)

He was not alone.

Joining his father and his bodyguards outside the Hall of Justice were about 15 members of the Sikh community from San Jose, where the main Gurdwara, or Sikh temple, has pledged its official support for Chahal, who has met District Attorney George Gascon's efforts to revoke his probation — and possibly put him in jail — with charges of racism and bias against Indian-Americans. Much of that line has been echoed by an apparently-astroturfed Facebook and Twitter campaign.

This is not sitting well with other Bay Area-based Sikhs, who are openly questioning why the committee of the Gurdwara is getting involved at all — and what Chahal or his family may have done to earn the support of a religious institution. 

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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

VIDEO: At SFSU, Black Student Confronts White Guy Over Dreadlocks

Posted By on Tue, Mar 29, 2016 at 1:08 PM

That's disrespectful of me, yo. - SCREENGRAB/YOUTUBE
  • Screengrab/YouTube
  • That's disrespectful of me, yo.
Many people are coming to the defense of a white male student who appears to be accosted by a black female student at San Francisco State University over his white dreadlocks in a video posted to YouTube on Monday.

The video purports to show Bonita Tindle, who’s been identified as an SFSU student employee, accost white dreads-haver Cory Goldstein over his hairdo. During the 46 second clip, another male student, who is black, stands alongside Tindle defending her actions. It’s unclear if the person recording the interaction knew any of the parties involved, but he stops the video when Tindle questions his actions.

One might be inclined to think this was all staged. But as the video continues, it becomes obvious this was embarrassingly real for everyone involved.

It all began with Tindle asking the black male student if he has a pair of scissors (to which he replied no). Then the argument begins:

“You’re saying I can’t have a hair style because of your culture. Why?” asks Goldstein.

“Because it’s my culture,” Tindle replies.

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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Famous Sikh Comedian Forced to Remove Turban at SFO

Posted By on Tue, Feb 23, 2016 at 11:30 AM


No one has successfully exploded a bomb hidden in their shoes while aboard a commercial airliner since would-be terrorist Richard Reid failed to do so the December after 9/11, nearly 15 years ago. Nevertheless, this is the United States of America, so we do a lot of the same things over and over expecting different results. Thus, you will continue to remove your shoes at airport security — even if no one else in the entire world is subjected to this same charade.

And if you so happen to not look like the average white American, you will have to remove a lot more than your shoes (think dignity).

On Sunday and Monday, Jasmeet Singh, a Canadian comedian who happens to be Sikh (which is not at all the same thing as Muslim, but does fall under the category of "brown") and who happens to wear clothing that freaks out a lot of average looking white Americans took to Twitter to recount a recent experience at SFO in which he was ordered to take off his turban while going through security.

But the worst part for Singh, better known as JusReign on YouTube, was not that the San Francisco TSA agents removed him from the line to scan his clothing for signs of being Muslim a threat. Here’s one of his tweets:

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Thursday, February 4, 2016

Cops Detain Super Bowl Protester For Photographing Police

Posted By on Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 3:03 PM

EKEVARA KITPOWSONG/SF EXAMINER
  • Ekevara Kitpowsong/SF Examiner

One of the demonstrators at last night's protest of Super Bowl City at the Embarcadero was detained by police and cited with a misdemeanor after taking photographs of police at the event, officials confirmed today.

Amir Varick was walking to the Tackle Homelessness protest at about 4:30 p.m. yesterday with his friend Alexandra Berliner, an organizer with All of Us or None, and Alexandra's mother Joanna Berliner.

The trio chose to enter security checkpoints in order to walk through Super Bowl City at Justin Herman Plaza rather than go around it, and Varick took notice of the snipers posted on rooftops of One Market and other buildings. He started taking photos — and that's when he drew the attention of police, who detained him.

Police say it was because he was taking an interest in the snipers' nests; Joanna Berliner has another theory. "It's because he [Varick] is black," she told SF Weekly.


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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

As Structure Fires Drop Citywide, Mission District Blazes Steadily

Posted By on Tue, Jan 5, 2016 at 12:52 PM

Last year's fatal fire at 22nd and Mission Streets. - GABRIELLE LURIE/SF EXAMINER
  • Gabrielle Lurie/SF Examiner
  • Last year's fatal fire at 22nd and Mission Streets.
The San Francisco Fire Department has discovered a dismaying trend: While fires in San Francisco have been on a gradual decline in the previous decade, the Mission District — home of some of the most in-demand real estate in the United States — hasn’t followed suit.

Citywide, annual conflagrations dropped from 317 in 2005 to a 10-year low of 186 in 2015, with some years showing fluctuations. The worst year was 2007, which saw 350 blazes.

But it’s a different story in the Mission, which has seen annual counts jump sporadically between a low of 10 fires and a high of 29 during the same period, in defiance of the city's overall downward trend — and meaning that a greater number of the city's total fires are in the Mission than ever before.

What's behind this steady rate of fires in the Mission? Nobody's quite sure. 

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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Friday, March 6, 2015

The Bay Area Is Full of Skinny People

Posted By on Fri, Mar 6, 2015 at 9:41 AM

t3wcumu.jpg
Maybe it's all those hills we climb or just the popularity of the treadmill desk. More likely, it's that you can't afford rent and groceries anymore. Whatever the case may be,  a new study has found that the San Francisco Bay Area is full of skinny people. 

According to Wallethub.com, the Bay Area has the fifth smallest weight problem in the United States. The study rates American cities based statistics concerning obesity, lifestyle habits, and occurrence of weight-related illnesses, including diabetes and high blood pressure. The news comes just in time to honor of National Nutrition Month, which also happens to fall during Girl Scout Cookie season.

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