Chronicle Editors Outraged, Mayor Reads News Online!

Mayor Jean Quan with her husband, Dr. Floyd Huen

The San Francisco Chronicle is on a tear. They have spent years and presumably thousands of their hard-earned dollars paying columnists to trash Oakland. I think the only mayor we ever had that they didn’t attack with such ferocity was, yeah, you guessed it, Jerry Brown. But Jerry was clearly part of the political establishment.

I won’t try to psychologize why they never found anything that about Dellums to like. It might have started with Dellums’ own disparagement of the press and just gone downhill from there. But, it wasn’t just Dellums, whenever possible they castigated city council members except for maybe,  de la Fuente (a Perata ally).

But now their editorial team is reaching so far out to find fault, that it’s becoming laughable. First the Chron editorial team meets with our new mayor and nitpicks its way through a nasty depiction of her new administration.

Then they declare that “Quan should be outraged”. Maybe they missed all her press briefings, “Open letter to Occupy Oakland”, and her outraged defense of port workers and port business while they were sitting in a corner of their San Francisco ivory tower reading print editions of their paper.

Let’s see, no city has been able to control its “occupations” without overwhelming force and heavy expenditures, but Quan should have able to do better than all of them. The port, which sits in our city, represents commerce from around the entire Bay area; yet we are still expected to beg or pay for assistance from other police agencies-dealing with the aftermath alone when they don’t follow our “crowd control” rules, including the resulting lawsuits and negative publicity.

Okay, yeah, guess our new mayor isn’t superwoman although even the Chronicle could never fault her work ethic and dedication to our town. But the other issue they have with her is that she reads the newspaper online. Wow, since the majority of newspaper readers in this day and age, digest their news online, is this for real?

Why don’t these cranky folks come out and say what they have against our mayor and our city? I don’t know what their problem is; but since I do read their paper (in print form most days), I have noticed a pattern: delegitimizing our system of voting and disparaging our grassroots work.

The folks at the Chron endorsed the machine candidate for mayor and fully expected him to win. When he didn’t, numerous stories began to appear casting aspersions on RCV, ranked-choice-voting, which I admit, helped to elect the first grassroots mayor in our history.

In terms of that silly resolution demanding the city prevent any future port closures, well, that was just posturing and carried with it no guarantee of how that might be accomplished.

Occupy Oakland has said that it no longer sees that as a tactic, but now some of the more reactionary elements in the movement may want to take on the challenge issued by de la Fuente. I hope they won’t be goaded into such a wrongheaded move; but I think the attention the resolution brought to the difficulties all cities face in these days of turmoil, did more to promote uncertainty than to contain it.