Monthly Archives: March 2009

It doesn’t have to be this bad. Really.

Root causes this, demographics that. Why is it that one can’t ever point out that violent crime in Oakland is inexcusably high without getting an almost immediate response about how we just can’t help it? Do most Oakland residents simply not care because they aren’t the ones getting shot? Do they really think the problem is so inevitable that they’re resigned to living with it, as long as they don’t have to think about it too much? Has the entire citizenry been infected with some kind of massive municipal version of Stockholm Syndrome by the City’s leadership, who spent the better part of 2008 telling us that crime was flat as if that were some kind of accomplishment?

Continue reading

Tom Thurston: Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die.

Monday night saw the first community meeting for the Area Specific Plan for the Central Embarcadero area. The area stretches from Coast Guard Island to the Martin Luther King Regional Shoreway. The Area Specific Plan will build on the prior Estuary Policy Plan (PDF) and will set the framework for re-zoning the area. It also sets the vision for how the area should be twenty or forty years from now.

Continue reading

The first step to solving a problem is recognizing that you have a problem

It’s amazing to me how obstinate so many of Oakland’s residents are in their complete refusal to acknowledge Oakland’s serious violent crime problem. Almost daily, I read or listen to various people assert that crime in Oakland is not actually that bad, that all big cities have crime, that the reason people think Oakland has a crime problem is because of media bias, that this incident or that could have happened anywhere.

Continue reading

Chris Kidd – Planning on the Estuary II: This time it’s *personal*

You thought you could get away from me, didn’t you?  Alas, the irascible Chris Kidd is back with another (not-so) arcane post about the planning and zoning going on in our fair city of Oakland.  This coming Monday, March 23rd, will see the first of many stakeholder community meetings for the Central Estuary Specific Plan.  If you can recall, I wrote a post about this selfsame project in July (back then it was just the regular ole’ Estuary Specific Plan).

Continue reading

Jack O’Connell vs. OUSD

I have my hands full enough with the City that I don’t even try to cover the schools, but that doesn’t mean I’m not interested in them. I wish there were more local education bloggers around. There’s certainly no shortage stuff to write about. Have you guys been following this fight with Jack O’Connell and the School Board? Talk about drama.

Continue reading