Monday, May 22, 2017



Thanks to Alternet.

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13th Street bike lane


SFMTA

A reader sends the photos above and below of the new protected bike lane on 13th Street:

You had a very good picture and letter the other day from some guy on the 9th Street/Division mess. This thing is part of that. 

This new “bicycle facility” reduces vehicle capacity---taking away a traffic lane and street parking---under the freeway near big stores, including Rainbow Grocery, Office Max, Best Buy, Costco, etc., to install totally unneeded bicycle lanes under the freeway.


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High-speed rail and universal preschool

Delaine Eastin speaks at the California Democrats 2017 State Convention in Sacramento. Photo: Paul Kuroda, Special To The Chronicle
Photo: Paul Kuroda for the Chronicle

The online version of yesterday's SF Chronicle story (Governor’s race heats up among California Democrats) doesn't include this statement under Delaine Eastin's picture: "If we can build a sexy, high-speed rail system...we can figure out how to pay for universal preschool."

Mike Brady provides some reasons why California can't---and shouldn't---build its high-speed rail system: Why High-Speed Rail Should Be Audited Before Caltrain Receives Federal Funds.

If the state insists on building this poorly-conceived project, there will be a lot less money for worthwhile projects like universal preschool.

Thanks to The Community Coalition on High-Speed Rail.

The leading candidate, Gavin Newsom, recently did a conditional flip-flop on high-speed rail, but his election is still the best chance for putting a stop to the boondoggle.

Take the Los Angeles Business Journal poll on high-speed rail.

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Suppressed cell phone warnings


Newly released public records show that California public health officials worked for five years on a set of guidelines to warn the public about the potential dangers of cell phones, revising their work 27 times with updated research before abandoning the efforts without ever making their concerns public until ordered by a judge...

Joel Moskowitz, a public health researcher at UC Berkeley who sued the state to force the release of the records, said state officials should never have withheld the warnings from the public. Lawyers for the state had argued in court that release of the warnings could cause unnecessary panic. “It would have to be purely political to deny distributing this,” Moskowitz said. “Science supports this.”

...The Chronicle submitted a public records request to the health department in March, asking for emails or documents related to why the cell phone guidelines were never approved to be made public — and to see whether there was any outside influence. The department refused to release records, saying those that existed were protected by attorney-client privilege.

The little information that is known about the state’s efforts to create and then abandon cell phone guidelines can be gleaned from Moskowitz’s lawsuit and the newly released documents...

The first version also warned: “Do not allow children to use a cell phone, except for emergencies.” The final version said, “Parents may want to limit their child’s cell phone use to texting, important calls and emergencies.”

“I want to know why this was suppressed,” Moskowitz said, referring to information he feels parents should be aware of.

The California Department of Public Health declined an interview request, releasing only written statements.

...Moskowitz said he hopes the state will decide to adopt and post the guidelines its own department created. “It seems to me better late than never to notify the public,” Moskowitz said. “The public has a right to this information paid for with their tax dollars.”

Joel Moskowitz's website: Smart Meter Harm

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Sunday, May 21, 2017

Our Moron in Chief on Islam

TrumpMuslimSpeech
World's greatest phony

by Hemant Mehta

In what appears to be a dramatic shift from the tone of his election campaign, Donald Trump embraced Islam, Saudi Arabia, and the Middle East in general during his first foreign speech today.

Trump, who in 2015 called for a blanket ban on all Muslims traveling to the United States, called Islam “one of the world’s great faiths” and acknowledged that most victims of terrorist attacks are themselves Muslims. He didn’t use the words “radical Islamic terrorism,” as he is fond of doing — and so fond of criticizing other people for not doing.

In fact, Trump said terrorists “falsely” invoke God’s name.

“This is a battle between good and evil,” he said. “Every time a terrorist murders an innocent person and falsely invokes the name of God, it should be an insult to every person of faith.”

“Terrorists do not worship God, they worship death,” Trump continued, delivering the speech during his first foreign trip as president.

Trump added that, “with God’s help,” the Arabic Islamic American Summit will mark “the beginning of the end” of extremist ideologies and terrorism.

With several references to religion, including numerous prayers and claims that the foreign visit will bring “blessed news” to both nations involved, Trump hailed the Saudi kingdom as a “fabulous place” and the location of some of the “holiest sites.”

Again, Trump’s language while abroad conflicts with his own past statements. On Sept. 11, 2014, for example, Trump retweeted someone saying “Saudi Arabia are nothing but mouth pieces, bullies, cowards. They have the money, but no guts.”

Rob's comment:
What a moron! And of course a hypocrite. His earlier opinion of Saudi Arabia was closer to the truth, but even that was only pandering to the Repug right wing. Trump doesn't know or care anything about Islam or any other religion.

Saudi Arabia is a "fabulous place" if you think treating women as second class citizens is fabulous and killing gay people is justified under that "great faith."

See also Here's Why the Saudis Love Trump and Trump's Sunni Strategy.

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Saturday, May 20, 2017

Muni joins the Cute Movement

SFMTA

From the SFMTA:

As San Francisco opens its arms this Sunday to Bay to Breakers, its annual tradition of costumes, revelry and (a bit of) athletics, a new participant will be in the mix: the SFMTA’s Vision Zero Hero.

If you plan to join the event, keep your eyes peeled for a photo op with our caped safety hero, who will run (or---let’s be honest---jog) in the race to call attention to Vision Zero, the citywide effort to end traffic fatalities. The Vision Zero Hero is among San Francisco’s newest mascots, and will join caped heroes in other major cities in advocating for safer, more livable streets.

The cheerful spirit of Bay to Breakers, when tens of thousands safely use our streets to make their way from the bay to Ocean Beach, is inspiring. It’s a unique opportunity for San Francisco’s residents and visitors to experience an extensive length of our streets without vehicle traffic...

Rob's comment:
It makes sense for Muni to create a fantasy hero for Vision Zero, its traffic safety fantasy that has had a zero impact on traffic safety in the city.

This is probably another idea from Muni's "creative shop" that gave us the lame "peace" campaign several years ago in response to those anti-jihad ads Muni was forced to display because of that darn First Amendment loophole on free speech.

This cuteness is what we're getting from Muni's growing bureaucracy of 6,263 employees.

Of course the MTA is "inspired" by the orgy of exhibitionism---and bad behavior---displayed every year during the Bay to Breakers race, since there is no "vehicle traffic," which they are systematically making worse in the city with their anti-car policies. 

Like a lot of city residents, the folks at Muni are apparently now convinced that they too are adorable. Some of us are unconvinced in both instances.

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Friday, May 19, 2017

Roger Ailes: Good riddance

Rolling Stone

Jeffrey P. Jones says it best: "No single individual has done more harm to American democracy in the last generation.”

In Rolling Stone:

Ailes was the Christopher Columbus of hate. When the former daytime TV executive and political strategist looked across the American continent, he saw money laying around in giant piles. He knew all that was needed to pick it up was a) the total abandonment of any sense of decency or civic duty in the news business, and b) the factory-like production of news stories that spoke to Americans' worst fantasies about each other (Roger Ailes Was One of the Worst Americans Ever).

Without Roger Ailes there would be no President Trump, the dumbest most contemptible man to ever hold that office.

See also Roger Ailes: No One Did More to Debase U.S. Politics

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Steve Bannon: Pseudo-intellectual

Steve Bannon

From the NY Times Book Review:

When Buckley assigned a review of Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged” to Whittaker Chambers[Big Sister is Watching You], a Communist turned fervent anti-Communist and devout Christian, he must have known the sparks would fly. To call the review an evisceration is to understate its severity. For Chambers, Rand’s novel was morally obscene, a shrill and dogmatic exercise in political propaganda that promoted a form of inverted Marxism in which a coterie of capitalist supermen do battle with and justly triumph over throngs of resentful, parasitic “looters.” Buckley himself would criticize Rand in similar terms on many occasions over the years, including in a decidedly mixed appreciation written on the occasion of her death in 1982 (William F. Buckley and the Odyssey of Conservatism).

That the Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, is an admirer of "Atlas Shrugged" says something unflattering about the intellectual caliber of the country's political leadership. No one assumes that political leaders have to be intellectuals, but Ayn Rand is sinking very low.

Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand

NY Times Magazine story last March quoted Steve Bannon: 

"What's that Dostoyevsky line: Happy families are all the same, but unhappy families are unhappy in their own unique ways?" (He meant Tolstoy.) "I think the Democrats are fundamentally afflicted with the inability to discuss and have an adult conversation about economics and jobs, because they're too consumed by identity politics."

The Tolstoy quotation Bannon was attributing to Dostoyevsky: “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”

Bannon got the gist of the quote right, but mixing up Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky---two very different writers---suggests that he hasn't read them, that he's a phony and a pseudo-intellectual.

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Monday, May 15, 2017

The bicycle fantasy in San Diego---and San Francisco


San Francisco also makes traffic policy based on the bike fantasy, like this whopper last year from a MTA planner the SF Examiner provided readers without challenge: 

The idea is to make Masonic Avenue safer to pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers, said Patrick Golier, a senior SFMTA planner. “Masonic is a mini-freeway,” he said Tuesday. “It has a dismal safety record"...Based on past similar projects, Golier said he expects the amount of cyclists to jump as much as 400 percent after the corridor is made safer.

The safety lie about Masonic aside---I unpacked that four years ago here---apparently the reporter didn't ask Golier about those "past similar projects" to support his bullshit.

Thanks to StreetsblogCal

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Idaho Stop for cars?

11925351_supervisor-scott-wieners-transportation_t69e1c92f
San Francisco Citizen

We know Wiener supports the Idaho Stop for cyclists, but does he support it for cars, too?

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Sunday, May 14, 2017

Socrates, not Jesus

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Saturday, May 13, 2017

How to recognize a transportation boondoggle

A rendering of the completed project at Masonic and Turk
Masonic Avenue Streetscape Project

Randal O'Toole provides ten ways to know when a transportation project is a boondoggle.

Number 8 sounds like a combination of the under-construction Masonic Avenue bike project and what the MTA has planned for Page Streetmake it a bike boulevard:

8. It’s a bike lane project that reduces the number of lanes for automobiles. Many cities are attempting to encourage cycling while simultaneously discouraging driving by converting auto lanes to bike lanes, such as by changing a four-lane street to a two-lane street with a center left-turn lane and two bike lanes. This probably doesn’t increase bicycle safety, but it does increase traffic congestion. It is nearly always possible to find parallel local streets that can be turned into bicycle boulevards without impeding through or local auto traffic. All bicycle projects that reduce the capacity of arterial or collector streets to move automobiles are boondoggles.

Last year O'Toole gave us this eternal truth about transportation projects: "All you have to do is mention the words 'public transit' and progressives will fall over themselves to support you no matter how expensive and ridiculous your plans."

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Friday, May 12, 2017

Brian Wiedenmeier, meet Matt Smith

scott_street_3_9_surveysize
Bike advocates live in an alternate universe, which is why I call their agenda a fantasy, since there's an unrealistic assumption underlying that agenda that it's possible---even a duty---for government at all levels to make riding a bike safe.

Bike advocates think doing that is all about "infrastructure." If they had protected bike lanes throughout the city, cyclists wouldn't have to worry about the danger of motor vehicles, and then men, women, children, and the elderly could all ride safely on city streets! (In reality most cycling accidents are "solo falls.")

Streetsblog's recent story on a talk at SPUR---a friendly audience for the bike message---by the Bicycle Coalition's Brian Wiedenmeier is a good example of this delusion:

San Francisco has made strides in increasing bicycling’s mode share, but its bike infrastructure is still bad. That was the conclusion of yesterday’s state of cycling talk at the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association. “I had three or four near misses on Market street just getting over here,” said Brian Wiedenmeier, executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. “So from our perspective it’s pretty crappy.” He said that the key to getting better, safer infrastructure for bikes is to rely on data when making decisions about lane and intersection construction...

Does Wiedenmeier mean Vision Zero "data"? According to that slogan disguised as a safety policy, every busy street in the city is part of "a high-injury network," since where most traffic accidents happen is---wait for it---on busy city streets.

Well, did Wiedenmeier have three or four "near misses" while riding his bike to SPUR? What was the nature of those incidents, and how would "infrastructure" have prevented them? Sounds like he was so rattled he couldn't clearly recall.

The infrastructure he wants: "protected bike lanes on all major streets," which means taking away traffic lanes and street parking on the busiest city streets, essentially remodeling city streets on behalf of a small minority and making traffic radically worse for more than 90% of those who now use city streets.

Wiedenmeier's experience reminds me of Matt Smith's 2005 account in the SF Weekly of his hair-raising daily commute by bike:

These conflicts are extraordinarily stressful, and on those mornings I find myself spending the first part of the day numb with low-level anger and fear. And I'm what you might call an ace at this: I've bike-commuted in big-city traffic for the past 25 years.

Nothing much has changed over the years. The moral of the story: riding a bike in San Francisco is dangerous and can't really be made safe. Don't do it, or if you do it have a realistic sense of the dangers involved. Even experienced cyclists get hurt on city streets.

We can be sure that Wiedenmeier wasn't referring to the "data" in that UC study that he and the Bicycle Coalition---along with Streetsblog and the rest of the local media---have been ignoring for years, since it showed that riding a bike in San Francisco is a lot more dangerous than the SFBC and City Hall have been telling us for years.

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Most Americans agree with SF

Image
New York Magazine


...Since the early 2000s, the public’s views on sex and marriage have changed drastically, as the percentage of Americans who say gay relations, conceiving a child outside of wedlock, extramarital sex, and divorce are morally acceptable have all increased by double digits.

These shifts have been powered by the growing liberalism of America’s elderly — itself a product of the success of social movements and, well, father time thinning the ranks of more conservative generations. By contrast, America’s growing intolerance for cruelty to animals is driven by the sensitivities of those under 50...

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Sometimes a cover-up is necessary




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Thursday, May 11, 2017

Bike to Work Day: $65,000 for the Bicycle Coalition

SF Bicycle Coalition

The City Controller's office tells me that City Hall provided the Bicycle Coalition $65,000 last year to stage Bike to Work Day. It's probably about the same this year. 

This event is like those taxpayer-funded Pentagon recruiting ads on TV that in effect propagandize the taxpayers themselves.

Bike to Work Day used to cost city taxpayers only $49,500 to stage, with even the interns getting paid for the event. (The Bicycle Coalition used to have 17 unpaid interns, but that information is no longer available on its website.) 

The SFBC's bigger staff now probably makes the event more expensive, not to mention all those "energizer stations" around the city that are staffed during the morning and evening commute: "Pedal by one of 26 Energizer Stations across San Francisco for free snacks, beverages and collectable, reusable tote bags filled with goodies."

Free!?

After 16 years of anti-car, pro-bike propaganda from City Hall and the Bicycle Coalition, commuting by bike in the city hasn't increased much. In 2000 2% of city commuters road bikes to work according to the Transportation Fact Sheet (page 3), and in 2016 that percentage is supposedly 4.3%, a gain that took 16 years! 

Note that the MTA prefers using 2006 as the 2% baseline, since that makes the increase seem more impressive.

See Walk to Work Day, which is also subsidized by the city.

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Kevin Drum

Can I use a hyphen? "Idiot-asshole" is my choice.

See also Donald Trump Tries to Explain Economics to The Economist. Hilarity Ensues.

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

City cars by department

A Daly City man and woman were arrested in connection with a fatal shooting in San Francisco’s Civic Center, San Francisco police said Monday.  Photo: Sarah Ravani
Photo: Sarah Ravani

In January I made this request for information from City Hall:

Several years ago, when the Dept. of the Environment was managing the city's fleet, the Examiner had a story about the many waivers city departments were asking for under the Healthy Air and Clean Transportation Ordinance.

Can you provide an update on that story? How many city cars---I'm not interested in trucks, other utility vehicles, or generators---does each city department have? Which departments have asked for waivers?

Dan Coleman, Fleet Analyst at Fleet Management/Central Shops, responded last week with the latest numbers and this statement: "No department has asked for waiver for 2017." 

Good to see that the aggressively anti-car MTA's car fleet has been reduced drastically from 535---with 529 requests for waivers!---to 124. Why can't they ride Muni or bikes while on the job? That's what they want the rest of us to do.

Apparently city departments were too embarrassed to ask for waivers this time around.

Department
Count of Cars
AIRPORT
98
BLDG INSP
107
COURTS
98
DPW
96
FIRE
74
GSA
28
HEALTH
78
HUMAN SERVICES
65
LIBRARY
4
MUNI
124
OTHER
15
POLICE
563
PORT
17
PUC
133
REC & PARK
25
SHERIFF
56
TECH
5
Grand Total

1,586

Below is the tally in 2013:

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Trump doesn't "know what it is to know something"


From George Will in the Washington Post:

It is urgent for Americans to think and speak clearly about President Trump’s inability to do either. This seems to be not a mere disinclination but a disability. It is not merely the result of intellectual sloth but of an untrained mind bereft of information and married to stratospheric self-confidence...

What is most alarming (and mortifying to the University of Pennsylvania, from which he graduated) is not that Trump has entered his eighth decade unscathed by even elementary knowledge about the nation’s history. As this column has said before, the problem isn’t that he does not know this or that, or that he does not know that he does not know this or that. Rather, the dangerous thing is that he does not know what it is to know something.

Kevin Drum on the Comey firing:

...Trump's astronomical ignorance has finally caught up with him. He seems to have had no idea that firing Comey wouldn't stop the investigation—nor that a new FBI director wouldn't dare quash it. In fact, all the firing does is make the investigation untouchable. And Trump's astronomical narcissism has caught up with him too. He has so little insight into other humans that he simply couldn't conceive of anyone hating Comey but still defending his right to serve out his term. In Trump's world, you reward your friends and punish your enemies and that's that...

Rob's comment:
Trump is a very stupid guy, the dumbest president since, well, George W. Bush.

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Tuesday, May 09, 2017

The "improvements" at 9th and Division

A view of the newly upgraded intersection of 9th and Division streets, looking west down Division.
MTA photo
From Rob Francis:

The SFMTA recently spent millions of dollars to create "improvements" to the 9th and Division street intersection. The results have been disastrous. 

Please take a moment to provide feedback to to the SFMTA through the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/9S6RSQ6

The street is more dangerous than before because cyclists are no longer required to stop at the intersection. Motorists and pedestrians must wait for cyclists to pass, and no one knows who has the right of way.

The "protected bike lanes" have backed up traffic to both the Bay Bridge and the 101/280 on-ramps. 

The newly created space in the streets is now attracting encampments in the intersection.

The SFTMA wants to roll this design out to the rest of the city. Please circulate this survey to your neighborhood groups.

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How to "get" the Octavia Blvd. fiasco

Construction workers were putting the finishing touches on the new Central Freeway offramp at the intersection of Octavia and Market Streets. They were removing barricades, landscaping, laying brick and cleaning the streets on Wednesday morning. San Francisco, California. Wednesday, September 7, 2005. Photo by Jessica Brandi Lifland/For The Chronicle Photo: Jessica Brandi Lifland/For The C
Creating the Octavia Blvd. expressway in 2005

Sometimes I enjoy Jim Herd's blog, especially when he does pictures like this. As an analyst of local issues, however, he's a pretty good photographer. 

Like his flawed account of the under-construction and future Masonic Avenue traffic fiasco a few years ago, he doesn't "get" why we have the ongoing Octavia Boulevard "disaster," either:

You know what a pigeon drop is? I sort of do, but I still don’t get it, not really. I’d be like, well, how is this going to work. And it was the same thing with the Octavia Boulevard disaster, which pitted a handful of landed millionaires of Hayes Valley against all the little people of the West Side. It went back and forth a few times, but the West Side lost and that’s how we ended up with the Octavia Boulevard disaster. Anyway, I never believed in it and I still don’t...

"Millionaires" versus "the little people"? In fact as I've pointed out over the years, the present Octavia Blvd. traffic fiasco was supported mostly by city progressives, though it took several elections and four ballot measures to get it done: the Bicycle Coalition, the Green Party, San Francisco Tomorrow, Calvin Welch and the Haight-Ashbury Neighborhood Council, Jane Morrison, SPUR, John Burton, Art Agnos, Carole Migden, Tom Radulovich, the San Francisco Democratic Party, the Hayes Valley Neighborhood Association, Robin Levitt, the Harvey Milk Club, and Walk San Francisco.

People of good will can disagree about whether rebuilding the Central Freeway overpass would have had worse consequences, but it's silly to continue denying that the new, unimproved Octavia Blvd. has had an awful impact on that part of town, which is gridlocked for most of the day with a lot of traffic that used to go over the Hayes Valley neighborhood on the Central Freeway: See John King's amen chorus: Norquist and Macdonald and "Healing" Hayes Valley with the Market and Octavia Neighborhood Plan.

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Typical month in Gun Nut Nation

Nine of the 73 guns discovered in carry-on luggage by TSA agents at airports across the country, during the week of March 6-12, 2017
Daily Kos

People exercising their Constitutional right to be morons:

No let-up in early March. Twenty-three people accidentally shot themselves (that we know of), and ten kids were accidentally shot. Four people accidentally shot family members or significant others. Three people accidentally fired their guns while they were out shopping and dining with the rest of us. We also had two each in the categories of accidentally firing weapons while cleaning them, and accidentally firing rounds into neighbors’ homes. You know, an average week...

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Friday, May 05, 2017

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New York Daily News

Har har

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Thursday, May 04, 2017

Obamacare and bankruptcies

Hank Green

Thanks to Daily Kos.

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Wednesday, May 03, 2017



From a comment to this story by alfred:

Watch this video. This is sort of the thing we are dealing with. The biker sees the pedestrian. He speeds up. He could have slowed down and let the pedestrian cross, but instead he sped up. Then he lectures the pedestrian, a poor old woman.

See also an exchange in the comments between me and a couple of uninformed critics: Corte Madera volunteers conceive bike-pedestrian overpass.

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Saturday, April 29, 2017

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Friday, April 28, 2017

"Will Trump Release the Missing JFK Files?"

170427-jfk-ap-1160.jpg
A.P. photo

Yesterday's story on Politico raises the question.

The woman handling the documents below says she's working on it.



See Countdown to 2017.

See also my deconstruction of the Magic Bullet theory: The assassination of JFK: Case not closed.

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Thursday, April 27, 2017

A city cyclist on Vision Zero

Examiner photo

Letter to the editor in the SF Examiner:


SFMTA Director Ed Reiskin proclaims that “each [San Francisco traffic fatality] is preventable” as though this is somehow self-evident simply because he proclaims it. It is no such thing.

As SFPD Cmdr. Mikail Ali discovered in his detailed analysis of 2013 and 2014 street fatalities, the majority of fatalities are due to “really, really bad behavior” on the part of drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians. Anyone who cycles and walks in San Francisco every day, as I do, will be as confounded as I am at the notion that red-light-running, inattentive jaywalking and failures to yield at crosswalks can be prevented by “Vision Zero,” which is a slogan pretending to be a panacea.

Reiskin cites “data analysis” as the basis for ever more expensive and intrusive mismanagement of our traffic flow. Yet despite having more than 5,000 employees at his service, the SFMTA has been slow to publish its annual collisions reports so we citizens can review the data ourselves.

The latest canard is “speeding,” something we all know is nearly impossible to do on tight, congested inner-city streets. Yet it will be cited as justification for massive new camera surveillance. I’m sure the vendors of the speeding cameras are pleased by Reiskin’s endorsement of their solution to a nonexistent problem, as well as Uber and Lyft, who smile upon his efforts to divert our attention away from the true current scourge: distracted ride-hail drivers.

Deane Hartley
San Francisco

Rob's comment:

Good letter. An updated number: as of 2015, the SFMTA had 6,263 employees.

A few months ago I wrote about the city's delay in releasing its annual Collisions Report

The disingenuous explanation for the delay in the report itself:

Since the previous 2010-2011 Collisions Report published in 2012, production of this report was delayed due to problems validating data during the transition to a new reporting system that relies on local data rather than state data. 

Until 2012, the SFMTA received collision data through the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records Systems (SWITRS), which is maintained by the California Highway Patrol (CHP). California Vehicle Code (CVC) Section 20008 requires that local governments send their police collision reports to the State...However, there has traditionally been a one- to two-year lag for an annual set of data to be considered official by the CHP. 

Since 2013, collision data has instead been reported directly by the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) and validated by the Department of Public Health (DPH) and the SFMTA...(page 3).

What happened in 2012 to prompt the city to "transition to a new reporting system"? That's when the University of California published a study (Since it's behind a paywall, I transcribed it here) showing that the city's SWITRS-based reporting system overlooked more than 1,300 serious cycling accidents between 2000 and 2009. Turns out that the city was relying too much on police reports and failing to count many accidents treated at SF General Hospital, the city's primary trauma center.

What makes it so galling is that the city actually knew about the problem way back in 2004, since it was noted in the Bicycle Plan the city tried to illegally implement without any environmental review. There was also an earlier UC study showing that the city had the same problem in reporting pedestrian accidents.

Equally galling is how the local media ignore this issue, except for yours truly at the beyond the pale District 5 Diary. Still waiting for the Chronicle, the Examiner, SF Weekly, and SF Streetsblog to even mention it. The NY Times found the story newsworthy, which is how I learned about it. Their readers also found it interesting, since there were 428 comments.

The implication: we not only have to submit to being constantly lectured on the city's fatuous Vision Zero bullshit; we're also supposed to continue to believe the fantasy that bicycles are a safe and sensible transportation "mode"---even for children---that justifies redesigning city streets to satisfy that small special interest group.

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