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Water Seeking Its Own Level

Sep
24
2004

It looks as though our pals on the Left here in San Francisco have found a well-dressed good-looking moderate Democrat — one not named Gavin Newsom — to kick around.
For the past two weeks, “Trail Mix,” the SFBay Guardian’s political gossip column has featured items on the same man and the same organization: SFSOS and its CEO Wade Randlett. The weekly column has three items at the most so this is some kind of real estate commitment.


The first item was a chart comparing political contributions to SFSOS to donations to George Bush’s re-election campaign. Helpful if you’re interested in finding out who the real Democrats — the real rich Democrats — are around here. It’s part of the paper’s interest in the ham-handed and sadly typical campaign by SFSOS to unseat Supervisor Jake McGoldrick.
Typical because it’s as subtle as SFSOS’s calling for a ballot measure to revise San Francisco’s school desegregation plans. Invoking Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s name, the group suggested that city schools were such in good shape that the painfully negotiated integration plans were no longer necessary. Ham-handed because, well, look – there’s no nice way to say this — what white man in his right mind, particularly one with a few dollars in the bank and lots of rich friends, tells black public school parents what’s good for them? And I’m leaving all of SFSOS’s really obnoxious fear-mongering about Mexican immigrants out of this particular tirade.
SFSOS founder Randlett has long been active in Democratic Party politics. His adventures in Silicon Valley were chronicled in Sara Miles’ “How to Hack a Party Line” known by its less formal title “Wade’s World.” His attempt to get San Francisco’s Asian community interested in local politics is a smart, long-term strategy. But it’s come at a price. Randlett has pissed off the city’s blacks who don’t mince words when it comes to describing his politics. As The Guardian stories illustrate SFSOS isn’t really changing the city’s politics. It is, instead, providing a nice, juicy target for the Progressive nostalgia-mongers, helping them keep alive the long-standing (and increasingly silly in a city filled with self-employed millionaires, many of whom are Randlett’s most loyal backers) split between the city’s business interests and its liberal.

Share  Posted by Chris Nolan at 11:32 AM | Permalink

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