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Housing Experiment Makes Debut

Will See If Increased Density Will Actually Mean Affordability


Thursday, May 16, 2013
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An experimental eight-year plan to determine whether increased housing densities actually pave the way for significant improvements in affordability went before the City Council’s Ordinance Committee this Tuesday for its first legislative test drive. No action was taken as details of the complex plan were unveiled, poked, and prodded by members of the subcommittee, not to mention several of the planning commissioners who’ve spent the last five years hashing out the fine print.

As proposed, the new ordinance would allow greater housing densities with fewer building guidelines and would lapse after eight years or after 250 units of housing were built, whichever came first. The ordinance ​— ​which will apply downtown, along the Haley-Cota corridor, and near the La Cumbre mall ​— ​is seeking to encourage private developers to build more and smaller units, which presumably will be more affordable to Santa Barbara’s middle-class workforce. Likewise, the hope is to discourage developers from building pricey high-end condos. To this end, setback, parking, and open-space requirements will be substantially relaxed in service of flexibility and affordability.

This new approach generated bitter opposition as the council deliberated over changes to the city’s general plan two years ago. Neighborhood preservationists argued increased densities would destroy Santa Barbara’s character without providing the housing affordabilities promised. When no side could garner the five-vote supermajority needed to pass an updated general plan, Councilmember Dale Francisco proposed this limited experiment as a compromise. The Ordinance Committee will get first crack at the new rule, but the entire council should take up the issue late this summer.

At Tuesday’s meeting, affordable-housing developers and architects were generally supportive, though some argued even greater flexibilities were needed to give developers the necessary inducement. Planning Commissioner Sheila Lodge argued against a provision that would greatly reduce open-space requirements for new developments located within two blocks of a city park. Putting a few trees in pots on some third-story roof garden, she argued, was not nearly as beneficial as plants in the ground. “People with lesser incomes, they deserve decent surroundings as well as everyone else,” Lodge said. Lisa Plowman, a land-use agent and affordable-housing advocate, countered that two blocks was not too far for people to walk. “We need to be out and walking,” she said. “This country is getting fatter and fatter by the day.”

Comments

Independent Discussion Guidelines

This is a page out of the "How to look like L.A" playbook.

Georgy (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 8:12 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Welcome to gridlock Santa Barbara. We probably will be biking and walking more, because it will be faster than driving.

I agree that we should all be out walking more, it's just that we should make that decision on our own, not have government make it for us.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 11:33 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If density were the main factor in home price, then it would follow that my 4-bedroom tract home with a huge backyard in beautiful, attractive, crime-free Goleta would be worth more than a 2 bedroom Butterfly Beach condo. Alas, the densely packed Butterfly Beach condo is worth nearly 4 times what my home in an undense neighborhood is. Absent socialist control of prices, the market will determine the price of homes regardless of how densely packed together they are. This experiment is like believing that Newton was wrong about gravity and dropping apples to determine if one might fly up rather than fall down.

Eckermann (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 3:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Its better than paving up the ag land. Most people prefer walking short distances to driving.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 3:42 p.m. (Suggest removal)

As some one that ones a couple apartment buildings with smaller units in the Haley-Cota downtown area -- I can tell you that reduced parking will be a big issue.
It is a pipe dream that people living downtown work downtown and walk to work.
They work in Goleta, the work in Carpinteria, and while a few do work in Santa Barbara they mostly drive to work. Everyone has a car nearly all have 1 car per each adult. Some adults have more than 1 car.

loneranger (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 5:07 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Of course not everyone does, but many people would if given the chance. In addition public transportation in various forms, maybe even light rail are much more sensible alternatives than destroying ag and wild land, especially at the rate we are. While I agree parking issues need to be addressed, it's somewhat easy (and I say this respectfully) for someone who owns "a coupla apartment buildings" to forget that other people aree actually looking for space to call (or lase) their own.
May I respectfully ask you if rent competition is a factor in your opinion?
BTW Some adults have no car by choice, and many bike and skateboard as well. But we digress.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 5:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I however do not like the smaller part. Only Buddhist monks need no space.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 5:43 p.m. (Suggest removal)

1. City needs to get out of the housing business.

2. The city is built out; nothing more needs to be built.

3. City desperately needs to audit all prior housing schemes to see what actually value they added and what liabilities they created.

4. Repeal the inclusionary housing ordinance ASAP. This was a total boon-doggle windfall for a few at the expense of many. A total rip-off of no social utility for the city at large. Audit it ASAP.

5. Calculate how much retail income, tax revenue losses and property devaluation has taken place due to the excessively large amount of city property turned over to subsidized and low-income housing, particularly concentrated in the downtown retail core.

6. Publish voting registration of all city subsidized housing projects and mandated city housing schemes. This is public information by address of registered voter.

7. City staff wants as many registered Democrat voters who vote pro-union as they can squeeze into this city.

8. Stop this nonsense before it is too late.

9. 17% of all city housing units are price-fixed or subsidized in this city, which was the last number I heard. This is a huge number of units belonging to city control and is unhealthy for all concerned. More will make things ever worse.

10. Santa Barbara is a poor city and getting poorer every year city housing degrades the market. Yet our city budgets grow every year and we can't even afford to pay city employee promises now.

11. Get off this destructive social agenda taking more and more housing out of the free market in this town.

12. We owe no one the right to subsidized housing, except when taking federal money for city council pet projects and political pay offs, we are then required creating more and more low-income housing to justify the few extra federal dollar pet project money the city gets. This is a major rip-off and needs to stop immediately. Stop all HUD grant applications that come with these strings.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The high density area is also along Milpas, something that Bendy White pushed for. Jamming more people into 4-story buildings will worsen the quality of life in this area.

Cutting the parking spaces will mean simply more on street parking, already a serious issue. Unless the MTD system is seriously improved, both in frequency of buses and numbers of buses and there seems no money for either of those, people will drive to work - and to shopping and play.

This is social engineering by those who do NOT live in this east side area. Peikert employee Lisa Plowman's arrogance is breathtaking: let 'em exercise on rooftop gardens and walk to the park!

citti (anonymous profile)
May 16, 2013 at 11:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The city being "built out" is pure elitist fantasy. All I hear are haves upset havenots might have..

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 12:10 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The best solution then is to raise the income of low-income employees so that they can afford to rent/own in Santa Barbara. As for Santa Barbara getting poorer, houses were far more affordable in the 70s and 80s for people doing the same kind of work then as they are doing now. What has happened is that real estate values have tripled and salaries have flat-lined. So how could Santa Barbara be poorer when home prices/equities are higher? (Homes underwater were bought just before the real estate crash.) There are people in this town - well educated - who have written off ever being able to afford a home in this town. I have read that in this very publication. These are not slackers. Nothing I have read in this discussion so far takes this into account or has a solution. The synopsis is that any attempts to address the problem are "socialist", "government intrusion" - HIGHLY ironic when it was government intrusion relaxing banking rules that allowed Wall Street to run amok, and the solution was to privatize the profits and socialize the losses (taxpayers bail out the banks) - and nobody has gone to jail for the fraud and deceit. Funny how "socialism" is decried for the poor but not for the rich. I would take the objections seriously if there were any parity at all - but banks/rich have benefited the most in this recovery and the poor are still struggling to make ends meet. I have heard that there are trillions of dollars in off-shore accounts on money that has either evaded taxes or on which very low rates have been paid. Robber Barons indeed.

tabatha (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 12:24 a.m. (Suggest removal)

corporate socialism IS a huge problem, thanks Tabatha. I agree with KV that SB is certainly NOT built-out, and also that we all need to walk and bike and take buses more often. Foo as usual is all about politics (Lanny?) scrawling "City staff wants as many registered Democrat voters" ...ha, ridiculous.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 5:36 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Building up and hoping that people will take public transportation is pure fantasy. We could see what it would be like by building up just by looking at San Francisco. The quality of life will change here drastically if that happens. But look at the bright side. The city will make a fortune in parking violation fines.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 7:14 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The only thing making prices go up instead of down is the Federal Reserve purchasing $40 billion of MBS every month on top of the two trillion it bought at the outset.

Why is one hand of the government making affordable housing while the other is pumping up the bubble?

It's a complicated scheme, but the end result is banks owning more of the property and local populations paying higher rents.

Think about it.

native2sb (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 9:54 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Yea Tabatha and it was Clinton who began destabilizing the lending market in order to give mortgages to people that did not qualify. I know you don't like that fact but it is what it is.
This is an awesome idea; we'll INTENTIONALLY build ghettos so that we can begin applying in advance for tax money to rebuild the blighted areas. Genius!

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 10:49 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Let's be honest. The underlying factor is all of this is illegal immigration. Too many people who cannot afford to live here having too many babies... these people take from the housing inventory and force citizens out...all without providing any value to our community.

We subsidize local business owners by giving them impunity when hiring so they're profits are assured. We subsidize health care, education and even cell phones for the poor... we give the poor, uneducated, unskilled people in this town so much that it really pays to make less and do nothing... And these are not the people we want. Poor, ignorant, unskilled and unwilling to better themselves... and guess what? They all have cable tv and cell phones...

The city has no place in this transaction. They are here to administer basic services and provide a safe, clean environment for the citizens of the city. Not to try and recreate the laws of economics while ignoring the true causes of our housing problem... too many people who should not be here either due to being illegal immigrants or because they are not financially able...

iamsomeguyinsb (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 12:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Santa Barbara is more than built-out......

You can no longer ride your bike on Haley or Cota without taking your life in danger. The traffic and speed of traffic is dangerous now. Overdevelopment caused to many cars to be on the road.

Georgy (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 12:31 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Street design is what causes unsafe conditions NOT building height. This whole conversation exhibits why Santa Barbara increasingly has a reputation of being a haven for idiots with a few extra dollars.
Many of you think the whole world is rich or wants to be and can't conceive that many of are happy with a balance and don't need your gross consumptive practices to feel fulfilled as human beings. Or that money somehow makes you talented, beautiful or smart. But many of you could get a billion dollars tomorrow and still be just as ignorant and ugly.
SB was once a really cool place, not it's just a punchline for any joke involving greed, hubris and superficiality.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 12:51 p.m. (Suggest removal)

and Kardashian weddings, Oprah sightings, and Montecito envy

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 1:31 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sounds like you'd like to move to Texas Ken. At least they have cheap housing and lots of jobs. (not that many unemployed in SB actually want one)

Leave SB to the ignorant wealthy.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 2:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

To blame the private mortgage greed fest that induced the bubble and the crash on any politician shows those with a brain that you have none...

No politician caused the mess. No politician made hundreds / thousands of companies seek out unqualified recipients for their profit and gain. No politician forced the Investment Banks to created derivatives...and sell those on the open market.

You folks are either really stupid or really lazy for you're simply parroting your chosen party and its warlords...when all the facts are easily available. And that makes you the fool for following blindly and jumping on the bandwagon. If you dont know, dont say. It only makes you sound like an idiot.

iamsomeguyinsb (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 2:24 p.m. (Suggest removal)

To add to Tabatha's comment while I don't know the exact minimum wage in 1973 I'm guessing it was somewhere in the $2 range. Anyway, given the increase in house prices from that time (when my parents bought a house in S.B.) and 2005 (when they sold it) coupled with the increase in minimum wage, the de facto increase was at least sixfold.

The reality is S.B. is trying to shove ten pounds of sand into a five-pound sack, and the sack is tearing. Any talk about "quality of life" is going out the window. We can define our lives by statistics, but at the end of the day, how do we REALLY feel? I saw the downturn start to really take effect in 1994 when I began to see the aggressive driving become a normal thing. (Where a person simply cannot drive the speed limit without some frantic person riding up their bumper) and so it goes. We are told to get out of our cars and bike more. In and of itself this is not a bad idea, but it is not practical for those of us who have been forced out of the area by high prices and *have to* commute, nor those who are too old/sick to do so but more importantly, the underlying reason for this anti-car push is the fact that there are too many people. Between this, the gang injunction, the addition of speed bumps, and the cameras on top of stop lights, it's all a reaction to the same problem: Too many rats in the cage.

The Bhutanese have a concept called "Gross National Happiness"; clearly, our neck of the woods hasn't even began to grasp this idea, and shoving people together shoulder-to-shoulder while the usual cast of characters who run everything get to go home to their nice homes in their nice neighborhoods is not compatible with any sort of truly "progressive" society.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 2:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

as a 93101 guy I empathize with you BC when you write "while the usual cast of characters who run everything get to go home to their nice homes in their nice neighborhoods" -- you mean Botany's "ignorant wealthy" living in Hope Ranch, Montecito, San Roque, Mission Cyn (I've missed some)?
I do not think the "wealthy" are especially ignorant; this 7% are dumb like foxes in that their income share ROSE a lot while the rest of the 93% had their wealth DIMINISH after 2007. The ueber-wealthy plutocrats employ highly talented lawyers and representatives who make sure their financial interests are always paramount. Look at the Montecito left-side off-ramps brouhaha [on another thread]: let these plutocrats join the rest of us freeway rats in a cage, eh?
Look at how MUS school and Cold Spring School in Montecito get about $18,000 per student while at my nearby Harding Elementary School it's under $10,000 per kid from the state...It goes on and on.
SB is not built-out: let's have the above-mentioned neighborhoods [with BC's "nice homes"] get closer to the population density of my lower Westside or the lower Eastside. Let's support Gov. Brown's wish to spread state monies for schools away from monied districts like Montecito and Hope District to augment monies for poorer students at Harding/McKinley/Franklin etc. schools. This would enhance our prospects for an increase in the Gross National Happiness.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 3:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Fun Fact: No longer answering anonymous internet insults, have a bitter day.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 4:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Maybe the part of the gang injunction that designates nuisance zones will drive down some rents instead.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 4:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sorry, rents are only going one way. Take one guess which way.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 5:52 p.m. (Suggest removal)


Sorry, rents are only going one way. Take one guess which way.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 17, 2013 at 5:52 p.m

Sideways?

billclausen (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 4:24 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Not over the last two years, but you can always hope.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 6:29 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Hey iamsomeguyinsb, don't let your passion get in front of your brain. This is only a political issue in that both parties worked together to change the asset to debt ratio and how debt is written off by the big lenders. Writing fthe bad paper as derivitives was EXPRESSLY created by the politicians.
For gawd sakes guy person, this is public knowledge that the politicians changed the rules and the lenders jumped right in.
Yea, this started with Clinton by first encouraging and then mandating that lenders take on a percentage of unqualified borrowers, mostly minorities that had lousy credit and zero money down. Bush continued the policies to stimulate home building. Obama is still doing it and they have re-upped some of the same crap that brought the market down in the first place.

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 7:43 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I agree IS, although no politician made millions by browbeating lenders into making loans to people that couldn't afford them. (remember redlining?), they did try to capture votes by doing just that. More than money, politicians need votes to stay alive politically. Also Fannie and Freddie were co-conspirators because they were also pressured by the politicians to lower lending standards. We all know what happened to them.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 9:10 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Sideways is in the StaYnez formerly rustic winery row, right?

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 9:17 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Isn't Dianne Feinstein's husband a banker? Didn't Mitt Romney come from those banking circles? Seems at least two politicians profitted.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 11:49 a.m. (Suggest removal)

correct, Ken, many many politicians made large gobs of money from these shenanigans, from both danged parties. More than voters, most politicians need MONEY to survive in our corrupt system. With the money, these politicians [both parties, again I say] buy and trick the voters... SCOTUS's Citizens United decision made the role of money in politics even larger.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 12:10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Like money and politics were separate before Citizen's United. The entire housing crisis was prior to Citizen's United. Money can buy votes, whether it's taxpayer money or private donations. Tell me that politicians that hand out government benefits and pensions like candy aren't doing it for votes. (and at taxpayer's expense too!)

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 1 p.m. (Suggest removal)

agreed, Botany, just the the Republican politicians handed the 1% ENORMOUS tax-breaks in 2002: money buying votes, eh? Oh yeah, they suddenly remembered the middle-class in 2003 and gave THEM an undeserved tax break too...but nada for the poorer classes, but hell, they don't vote so....

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 2:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The poor (and much of the middle class) don't pay federal income taxes either, so how can they get a break on their federal income tax?

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 4:09 p.m. (Suggest removal)

They do indeed pay taxes out of their paychecks which is in effect loaning the gov money til they get refunded at the end of the year.
Ask somebody with a job, they will show you a while column of numbers which represent taxes taken out of their pay immediately; thereby reducing their short term liquidity.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 4:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

yes, Botany, you speak with your usual patrician scorn for the 47%, like Romnesia, and are less of a true American for it. Indeed, ask someone with a job, landlord.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 5:08 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Ken, you probably don't know this, but most working people have the ability to change their withholding of federal income taxes by completing a w-4 form, thereby eliminated giving the government a free loan.

No scorn for working people Dan. It's just a fact you can't give federal income tax relief to people that don't pay any.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 18, 2013 at 9:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Botany - could you tell me who makes up the 47%?? Bet you cannot.

tabatha (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 12:58 a.m. (Suggest removal)

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/w...

Part of the reason so many Americans don’t pay federal income taxes is that Republicans have passed a series of very large tax cuts that wiped out the income-tax liability for many Americans. That’s why, when you look at graphs of the percent of Americans who don’t pay income taxes, you see huge jumps after Ronald Reagan’s 1986 tax reform and George W. Bush’s 2001 and 2003 tax cuts. So whenever you hear that half of Americans don’t pay federal income taxes, remember: Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush helped build that. (You also see a jump after the financial crisis begins in 2008, but we can expect that to be mostly temporary.)

22% of people who pay no or little in taxes are the elderly who have spent a lifetime of paying taxes. And many of the remainder have been moved off paying taxes because of huge tax cuts by Republicans. HAHAHAHAH And now they are whining about it. HAHAHAHAH. And they don't understand that they are whining about what they did. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.

LOL!

tabatha (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 1:12 a.m. (Suggest removal)

We should all have lunch.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 1:22 a.m. (Suggest removal)

right, but maybe most of the oligarchs DO understand that they're actively whining about what they did [ginormous tax cuts for hyper-wealthy]... and their ferocious attacks on social democracy comprise a strategy to keep liberals and lovers of democracy on their heels.
We cut these folks WAY too much slack. They fear social democracy so they gin up their obfuscating criticisms...e.g. silly focus on Benghazi, pressure to go into Syria or to aid Israel attacking Iran, or...
And to be fair, the IRS targeting of tea party'ish groups is grotesque and more heads need to roll.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 6:18 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"silly focus on Benghazi,"? You know damn well that you would have been tearing up these comments if the Bush administration had intentionally lied about why they did not protect our diplomats and then lied again to cover up the stupidity.
Did you read the emails released by the White House(conveniently without the FIRST TWO DAYS)? I did and it was sickening.
Wow, thanks for admitting that the IRS conveniently and intentionally targeted conservative groups before Obama's election.

You forgot to throw in our great Presidents use of the Patriot Act and wiretapping the Associated Press...

For gawdsakes start being an American first and a partisan political weenie second.

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 6:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

born, bred, raised, educated all in our glorious US of A. Loving my country, yeah, I will be critical. Benghazi is BS, & you gotta know that, Italian. A paper as conservative as the LATimes wrote in its masthead editorial [5/16/13]: "newly released emails supporet the president's assertion that there's no 'there' there. Ginning up BS.
Bush passed the Patriot Act, dude, catch up on your recent history. For Gawdsake's try to be a real American [transplants are supposed to be more zealous] and not a partisan CLASS weenie.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 3:01 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I love how everybody acts as if there are two parties instead of two wings of the same corporation.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 3:52 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Good to know that Dan isn't a "partisan class weenie". All this while he trumps the benefits of "social democracy". How's that working for them? Even Germany is caving under the pressure of it's own government bureaucracy.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 4:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

ah, you may mean "trumpets" there, Botany. Try checking recent business news about Germany: they are performing extremely well with 4% unemployment and the sort of Gini coefficient we can only dream about here.
KV agreed they are two wings of the same corporation, and Obama IS outdoing Bush 43 on the wicked drone assassinations... but there are a few difference, no? Gun control? Unions? value of education for all?

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 5:13 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Sometimes I think the more photosynthetic among us just open a history book at random and decide that's where the world is today.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 5:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

the photosynthetic types like to pick out data and ballyhoo it without context...yet they think they're so "old school"! Ha
And it is important to trumpet the virtues of "social democracy"!

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 8:05 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Check the news lately Dan?

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-05...

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 8:58 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The old "less than forecast" BS which basically means a soothsayer made the wrong prediction and this means impending doom for Germany but another pundit gig for the soothsayer.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 19, 2013 at 9:16 p.m. (Suggest removal)

yeah, Botz, but try Bloomberg's more recent [5/20] bit here:
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013...
Germany, world's fourth largest economy and GROWING (though a bit less than hoped-for), is very strong and the article notes "signs of a global economic recovery"...
But my genuine point, based on Welsh's "economics" housing piece", means we The People need to redistribute some of these monies back down to the bottom and toward the middle (better Gini) = that Social Democracy Botany and 2% allies detest... & attack constantly [hi foo], fear a great deal and with good reason since we need a NEW New Deal now.

DrDan (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 6:25 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Your redistributionist, socialist model doesn't work Dan. It failed in the past, it's failing now in Europe, and you want us to adopt the same model? The only reason our economy has performed better than Europe's is because we haven't completely adopted their model yet. Of course, the BRIC countries have far outperformed us because their systems are much less like Europe's than ours is.

Botany (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 7:52 a.m. (Suggest removal)

At least we have a first: using the LAT as the objective voice of conservative journalism. Even Obama's mouthpiece the NYT does not agree with your point of view.

Bush has NOTHING to do with the Patriot Act at this point. Obama had his shot to not sign the thing and instead liked the power too much to pass it up. You can't keep blaming Bush for events that our current idiot now controls.
I just heard Bill Press on Bay Area radio, hardly a right wing nut, state that E. Holder should be fired yesterday for general incompetence and profoundly un American policies. It must be killing the left that Obama is indeed part of the same corporation as Bush...

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 9:28 a.m. (Suggest removal)

On partisan politics:

There is a tendency for parties to make their way into local offices, in effect franchising our local governance to the larger organizations. Partisan politicians use the local offices as stepping stones for their careers and in the process, sell out the local community for future advantages.

One side of it is the addiction to federal funding sources for local programs and projects, as if the community was getting something for nothing. Needless to say, any monies that come down from the state and federal levels were originally extracted at a local level.

My point is to highlight the fact that whenever local politics is focused on getting something from higher levels of the government, it is in fact a subjugation of the local populace to state and national politics volunteered by our locally elected officials.

In conclusion, please do not vote for partisan politicians in local elections.

Thank you.

native2sb (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 9:53 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The NYT is the establishment mouthpiece, which includes both Dems and Repubs - much as the Indy functions in the same way for the SB establishment. No big conspiracy, that's just how it's evolved. That's probably how all successful enterprises evolve.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 9:57 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Native2sb,

It's pretty impossible not to vote for partisan politicians in any local election because the Rs and the Ds are so ingrained, and control the purse strings.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 10:01 a.m. (Suggest removal)

This is an enterprising community. If a good candidate was put forward we could buck the trend.

native2sb (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 11:06 a.m. (Suggest removal)

BTW, where can one find out who owns a building or the escrow status of a building and who is buying it?

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 20, 2013 at 9:32 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I would be seriously interested in investing time and money in a local candidate that was neither a Dem or a Repub.

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
May 21, 2013 at 4:51 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I agree but it can't be the first crazy we find on a streetcorner.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 21, 2013 at 5:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

In addition to this, I think the city should limit the amount of places that are bought and then rented out to tourists on sites like VRBO and Airbnb. So many places these days are being bought and used as vacation rentals.

csautot (anonymous profile)
May 22, 2013 at 1:49 p.m. (Suggest removal)

So you saw me standing on the street corner by the court house last night watching the show for free?

italiansurg (anonymous profile)
May 22, 2013 at 1:59 p.m. (Suggest removal)

What WAS the show last night Italiansurg? Another friend of mine went and I still don't know!

NYC has taken legal action against unauthorized inns as they are calling rentals less than 29 days.
Some SB landlords want to charge you for overnight guests even if you're a year long tenant.
Much of our local housing crisis is enhanced by houses just sitting empty waiting for the one big purse to come along once a year or so.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
May 22, 2013 at 2:04 p.m. (Suggest removal)