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Income Inequality

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Regarding automation, we recently got those oversize trash cans in our neighborhood so that the garbage trucks with the mechanical arms can come by and pick up the trash.  It's great for the residents, but I couldn't help but think of the affect it has on the employees who used to come by and pick up our waste.  Two and three man trucks are now down to one or two man trucks.  Not only that, but you can fit nearly anything in those garbage cans, so it affects the scrappers as well.  Just a small example of a larger issue.

 

Want to horrify a New Yorker? Tell them about The Claw. We've had The Claw in Columbus for at least eight years. New Yorkers take a lot of pride in the fact that they are able to get all that trash out of the city and that garbage collecting employs a lot of people. If you've watched garbage collection there, you know what I'm talking about with the guys moving fast, 5-6 guys per truck and the driver wheeling the thing like it's a sprint car. When I explain how The Claw inches down the street with only a driver New Yorkers think it's terrible.

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Regarding automation, we recently got those oversize trash cans in our neighborhood so that the garbage trucks with the mechanical arms can come by and pick up the trash.  It's great for the residents, but I couldn't help but think of the affect it has on the employees who used to come by and pick up our waste.  Two and three man trucks are now down to one or two man trucks.  Not only that, but you can fit nearly anything in those garbage cans, so it affects the scrappers as well.  Just a small example of a larger issue.

 

Want to horrify a New Yorker? Tell them about The Claw. We've had The Claw in Columbus for at least eight years. New Yorkers take a lot of pride in the fact that they are able to get all that trash out of the city and that garbage collecting employs a lot of people. If you've watched garbage collection there, you know what I'm talking about with the guys moving fast, 5-6 guys per truck and the driver wheeling the thing like it's a sprint car. When I explain how The Claw inches down the street with only a driver New Yorkers think it's terrible.

 

It should probably be considered who runs that business in NYC. As Rodney Dangerfield said, "it's not the Boy Scouts."

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Can't or won't?

 

Government Can't Seem to Seal Off $736M Farm Subsidy Loophole

 

This month, the U.S. Government Accountability Office released a report that found about half of the $1.5 billion in farm subsidies distributed last year were to people not "actively engaged" in farming.

 

In other words, about $736 million in farm subsidies went to people who don't take part in a farm's daily operation and are very often not at the farm. In fact, many farm subsidy recipients do not even live near the farms they get subsidies for — sometimes they're not even living in the same state, since the agency's guidelines don't require a manager to actually visit the farm operation to be eligible.

 

*  *  *  *  *

 

Furthermore, the GAO found that some farming operations were getting multiple subsidies for managerial positions.

 

In one instance, the GAO found that a farm in the Midwest got $400,000 in subsidy payments last year distributed among 11 members of the same family who all claimed management contributions, and two live in south Florida.

 

http://www.mainstreet.com/article/moneyinvesting/news/government-cant-seem-seal-736m-farm-subsidy-loophole?puc=yahoo&cm_ven=YAHOO

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Poof goes the middle class 

 

http://www.latimes.com/opinion/commentary/la-oe-mcmanus-column-inequality-20131023,0,7173397.column#axzz2iZ2KnJdI

 

Social mobility won't disappear; indeed, cheap online education will make it possible for the most gifted and motivated in the underclass to rise. But they'll have to be both very smart and very diligent; because of constant performance testing, there will be few second chances for those who don't get it right the first time.

 

But inequality will increase. And maybe that's OK, Cowen says. "I don't think we know the causal relationship between inequality and happiness," he told me. If people have decent low-cost housing, food and healthcare, they might even be happier in a middle-classless future, he speculates.

 

Great article from the LA Times. The truth is, in Northern California, we already don't have a middle class. Los Angeles and Southern California still do. The only "affordable" places left in the Bay Area are the worst gang territories in East Oakland and Vallejo. To afford a market rate studio in San Francisco, you need to be making at least 125k (and landlords still probably won't rent to you because other applicants at the open house will have much higher incomes- or be a dual income mid-six figures couple with equity in a startup about to sell). Not only is the 25% federal income tax bracket brutal for middle income workers (why does it jump from 15% to 25%? That's ridiculous for someone only breaking 40k a year), but the state of California does a lot to brutalize its middle class families...actually forget families...middle class singles. The families are leaving or moving to the valley.

 

But in terms of social mobility, California has it in spades. The state is open to outsiders and immigrants, and its economy supports a lot of small businesses and new technology (both LA and the Bay, just LA is getting there slower). The state clearly is already living in the world that Cowen imagines. No place is worse than San Francisco when it comes to providing housing or quality of life for middle income workers. The city supports its rich, drug addicts (they can get away with a lot), and homeless (whole industries built around the non-profits), but not so much its citizens in the 40k-125k area, and not really its families (though raising kids in a place like SF would still be questionable without the high COL). As a result, San Francisco now has the lowest percentage of children of any big city in the country. You can't have kids if you aren't rich.

 

http://sfist.com/2013/11/18/middle_class_screwed_in_current_hou.php

 

Unfortunately, San Francisco and Silicon Valley prove you don't need a working class or middle class to have a successful city or booming economy. SF just added 68,000 new jobs last year- most of them extremely high paying (though large tax breaks were used to keep companies in the city or get them to move to it). The short-term trend is what's called the bacon-wrapped economy:

 

The Bacon-Wrapped Economy

Tech has brought very young, very rich people to the Bay Area like never before. And the changes to our cultural and economic landscape aren't necessarily for the better.

 

Last July, Google threw an office party. But this being Google — the third largest company in the world as of January — it wasn't really a standard ice-cream-cake-and-canned-beer office party. The event was luau-themed, so the company hired staff to dig big holes in its Mountain View campus' lawn and fit spits inside for the purposes of roasting pigs, according to people who were there. There were tables full of food and drinks scattered around. Also on offer: a sophisticated wave machine so employees could try their hands at surfing — miles away from the ocean.

 

In the tech world, nearly everyone has these stories of inordinate wealth. They're repeated — in a tone somewhere between sheepish, astounded, and proud, depending on who's doing the telling — so much they get passed around and fossilized into legend. In the course of several months and more than two-dozen interviews for this story, I heard plenty of them: the time Airbnb flew Ashton Kutcher in for a meeting. That one company party with the ice luge, or the one with a surprise appearance by Jane's Addiction. The guy who lost his iPhone several times over the course of one hedonistic weekend, buying a brand-new one each time ("you know, because he can," the storyteller added, wide-eyed), or the one who just bought a $5,000 bicycle, or the one who flew halfway around the world on a moment's notice, just to get away for the weekend. At a party for a midsize San Francisco startup whose employees happened to have an office in-joke about Smirnoff Ice at the time, an entire room was filled with buckets of it.

 

"The money here is obscene," Nick Bilton wrote in a now-infamous July 2012 post for The New York Times' tech blog, Bits. "The newly minted rich are obsessed with outperforming their rivals. One industry party I attended had a jungle theme. This included a real, 600-pound tiger in a cage and a monkey that would pose for Instagram photos. A prominent Googler's Christmas party in Palo Alto had mounds of snow in the yard to round out the festive spirit. It was 70 degrees outside. Sean Parker, a founder of Airtime, threw a lavish, $1 million party that included models he hired to roam the room and a performance by Snoop Dogg." Bilton's examples are arresting, but his point is that none of this is all that uncommon in a region that's seen a massive influx of money in a very short time.

 

http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/the-bacon-wrapped-economy/Content?oid=3494301

 

The long-term trend of this is unknown, but it appears that unlike the last tech bubble, this one is here to stay. San Francisco's mobile apps, smart phones, social media, and big data hoarding applications are, to quote a tech sales rep, "crushing it, bro."

 

Not having a middle class creates a sheltered, privileged, and delusional world, but that has done nothing to hurt the economy of the area (might hurt the economy of other areas with new technology). One could make the argument that San Francisco's lack of a middle class is part of the reason it's in such an economic boom. People joke that San Francisco startups solve "the problems of the new 1%," (and create a non-profit empire that takes heat off the long-term wealthy) but that is kind of the point. The economy shifted to providing luxury services and entertainment for the wealthiest people in the world.

 

Instead of a city of shipping, manufacturing, finance, advertising, art, fashion, and law, it's rapidly becoming a city ruthlessly focused on tech startups and venture capitalism with international tourism being the fallback. If you want to get rich, you don't work on Wall Street. You work in venture capitalism or get equity in a mobile app developer, data mining application, enterprise software, etc.

 

*Or you just inherit real estate...

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That's what happens when you stop spending money in your local community and instead spend it online. The middle class dies, your town dies and smarmy geeks on the coasts party with tigers and throw their new iPhones into the bay.

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There is basically no such thing as a "local business" anymore.  Pull back the curtain on your favor local restaurant or retailer and you'll find connections to the global supply chain.  Do the same with your favorite local professional services firm and you'll often be stunned at how far away they might have clients.

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>whose employees happened to have an office in-joke about Smirnoff Ice at the time

 

Our daily office joke, now well into its third year, revolves around Coke Zero.  It's gotten so ridiculous that nobody dares buy one out of the vending machine, and some of the bottles in there might date from 2010.  Our other big joke revolves around one of the ladies in the office, who is a serial meat gazer.  Periodically someone crafts a comeback that combines the meat gazing and the vending machine. 

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C-Dawg, that is a good post about San Francisco, Silicon Valley. They guy who owns the firm that I work for lives in Los Altos, but he can afford.

He made some money when he lived in Georgetown, but he still knocks down 5-15 Mil annually. He tells me California is great, if you can afford it.

Your average 3 BR 2 bath ranch on a nice street in Mountain View is probably 1.5 Million.

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^It's crazy in the tech world, but there are real opportunities for kids fresh out of school to make millions. While many hail from Stanford and Ivy Leagues, there are still options for more "normal" kids at these companies.

 

I think it sort of balances out. You pay obscene amounts of money to live in a place with good job options and a booming economy. People are flooding the Bay Area market because there aren't many places left like this in the United States.

 

And coastal California is great even if you can't afford it. That's why the population is still growing despite how much harder it is to live here. Though LA and San Diego are better starter cities...

 

San Francisco is nearly impossible to break into if you aren't rich. The time to move to SF has passed unless you have a high-paying job offer in hand and lease already signed...with the lease already being signed being the much bigger issue. There are stories of guys making 200k a year having to quit their jobs and leave because they never found a place to live close to the city.

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^It's crazy in the tech world, but there are real opportunities for kids fresh out of school to make millions. While many hail from Stanford and Ivy Leagues, there are still options for more "normal" kids at these companies.

 

I think it sort of balances out. You pay obscene amounts of money to live in a place with good job options and a booming economy. People are flooding the Bay Area market because there aren't many places left like this in the United States.

 

And coastal California is great even if you can't afford it. That's why the population is still growing despite how much harder it is to live here. Though LA and San Diego are better starter cities...

 

San Francisco is nearly impossible to break into if you aren't rich. The time to move to SF has passed unless you have a high-paying job offer in hand and lease already signed...with the lease already being signed being the much bigger issue. There are stories of guys making 200k a year having to quit their jobs and leave because they never found a place to live close to the city.

 

Average 2 BR Apartment rent is around $3,500 a month. FWIW being personally angry or jealous of others who make big money is

a losing position. Successful people don't behave like that.

 

 

Backlash by the Bay: Tech Riches Alter a City

Technology Boom Breeds Hostility: Resentment toward San Francisco’s tech workers has grown as many blame them for soaring housing prices and widening income disparitie.

 

But a nerve had been struck. As the center of the technology industry has moved north from Silicon Valley to San Francisco and the largess from tech companies has flowed into the city — Twitter’s stock offering unleashed an estimated 1,600 new millionaires — income disparities have widened sharply, housing prices have soared and orange construction cranes dot the skyline. The tech workers have, rightly or wrongly, received the blame.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/25/us/backlash-by-the-bay-tech-riches-alter-a-city.html?pagewanted=1&_r=0

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Some of this backlash also might be due to the tech boom overloading the Bay Area with men. Already a gay mecca, the addition of thousands of straight men working in tech has skewed the demographics heavily to the male side there. Any time you take the girls away men are going to get cranky; see pirate ships, prison, the military, manual labor jobs, sausage-fest parties etc.

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Also you can't expect an army of nerds to be personable or understand cultures that aren't their own. Sure some are well-rounded, have people skills and have warm personalities, but face it, many have been in front of screens alone 16+ hours a day since elementary school. That's not the way to breed people persons.

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LOL--I love the analysis.  San Fran needs to start hosting "ladies nights" to balance the demographics!  Just make sure those ladies...are actually ladies!

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The tech economy is not the sole reason the city is expensive (in terms of rent, but of course bars and restaurants will cater to that market). For 20 years, San Francisco has made it nearly impossible to add high-rises and skyscrapers outside of SOMA, despite insane demand for it being there.

 

And there are hundreds, if not thousands of empty lots in the city (heavily concentrated in the southeastern area). In fact, the T Third Street light rail was built to spin off development in this area, yet it has been slower than it should be since SF's approval process is just brutal. Few firms can go through with it. Don't believe city planners who defend the lack of development. There is plenty of room for SF to grow. It should be over 1 million people now, and could easily support 1.25 to 1.5 million if transit was beefed up (transit and traffic being the big problems). San Francisco's income inequality is in part due to its laws, regulations and NIMBY politics.

 

No rich tech workers want to pay $3500 rents either! Rent is money right down the drain. This is a classic supply and demand problem. I can't stand people who blame tech workers in one sentence and then protest new developments in their neighborhood during the next. With a booming job market, record low vacancies, and a fixed supply of housing, it's obvious what that creates. The only solution is to build, build, build! Supply has to go up, and there is so much space for it in this city. And keep in mind most San Franciscans who attack tech workers are rich themselves. These are first wave gentrifiers attacking second and third wave gentrifiers (the "hyper-gentrifiers" as they're called here). The difference is the 20-something tech workers are screwed because they have to eat the rent of today, not yesterday when things were affordable. I know doctors and lawyers paying 25% market rate ($900 on those market rate $3500 apartments) because they moved here in 1995! And some of them still complain about 22-year-old tech workers.

 

San Francisco offers many lessons for other cities. Basically, look what San Francisco did when it hyper-gentrified, and do the exact opposite.

 

*And it's ridiculous to argue the Mission is losing character. It lost it a long time ago...there are $8,000 a month 2-bds in the Mission now! The Mission has been hipster douchebag central for years. $10 drinks aren't exactly a new thing there...

 

you see a standard 2 bedroom, 2nd floor Edwardian flat in the Mission listed for $7500 a month - and then find out that some entrepreneur offered the landlord $8000 a month sight unseen.

 

http://valleywag.gawker.com/douchebags-like-you-are-ruining-san-francisco-512645164

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Yeah C-Dawg, the supply of residential housing is a big big issue. If folks want more affordable options you gotta build.

I remember after the .com crash some developers picked up empty Class a office buildings, in the Valley, tore em down and put up

apartments-condos, because even then housing was in short supply.

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Some of this backlash also might be due to the tech boom overloading the Bay Area with men. Already a gay mecca, the addition of thousands of straight men working in tech has skewed the demographics heavily to the male side there. Any time you take the girls away men are going to get cranky; see pirate ships, prison, the military, manual labor jobs, sausage-fest parties etc.

 

...Also you can't expect an army of nerds to be personable or understand cultures that aren't their own. Sure some are well-rounded, have people skills and have warm personalities, but face it, many have been in front of screens alone 16+ hours a day since elementary school. That's not the way to breed people persons.

 

Actually, this is what people complain about the most. San Francisco is way too bro.

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LOL--I love the analysis.  San Fran needs to start hosting "ladies nights" to balance the demographics!  Just make sure those ladies...are actually ladies!

 

Real SF problems. :wink:

 

I was walking by Asia SF the other night and a group of clean, nicely dressed tourists had no idea what they were getting into...

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^Can't, she is on the lease. This happens all the time in SF. People are forced to live with exes because they can't get anywhere else to live and it becomes "who moves out?"- meaning a doubling or tripling of rent. Nasty stuff!

 

Smart "couples" get a 1-bed or 2-bed so that when they do break up, they can at least get some privacy. The worst situations are shared studios. You could have ex-girlfriend sleeping right next to you! "Hey Brian, this is Dan! We met at Elbo Room and he's a disgusting human being. Hope you don't mind the sound of us having sex in the same room!"

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Throwing the elderly, the poor, the working class, and terminal cancer patients to the streets is a questionable move, but it's becoming the norm in San Francisco. Anything for money...

 

Spanning three decades in the Mission District, prominent San Francisco artist and curator René Yañez, who seeded and grew the annual Dia de Los Muertos celebration into a citywide event, is in the process of being evicted from his home of 35 years. His former wife, artist Yolanda Lopez, and his son, the artist Rio Yañez, are also included in the eviction notice.

 

“René and Yolanda helped paint the neighborhood into what it is today,” said Sarah Guerra, the operations manager at the Brava Theater and one of the many artists in the neighborhood who are organizing support efforts.

 

“There’s a lot going on that I am trying to reconcile with,” Rio Yañez, 33, added. ”Both of my parents have made a pretty large cultural investment with the city, but there’s not a lot of protection at this point.

 

“Rent control is what afforded my parents with the opportunity to live in this city and make art. Being an artist means they have no savings, no retirement, no health care. They live check to check. For their dedication to art, that’s where they are. With elderly people like them, with limited income, this essentially makes them homeless.”

 

The eviction comes at a particularly difficult time because both Yañez, who is 71, and his partner, Cynthia Wallis, have terminal cancer.

 

“It’s an outrage, it’s tragic, and sadly, it’s all too common in this merciless city that seems to care nothing for those who’ve helped make it what it once wanted to be,” Gómez-Peña wrote.

 

http://missionlocal.org/2013/10/royalty-of-the-mission-art-scene-faces-eviction/

 

http://missionlocal.org/2013/11/eviction-group-aims-to-put-housing-on-the-ballot/

 

What makes me sick in these situations is the lack of empathy among some of SF's new residents (read the comments section). You literally hear people say, "It's their fault they can't afford market rate apartments! Living here is not a right. If you can't afford to live here, leave!" Being rich doesn't give anyone the right be an asshole. That's what is disturbing about San Francisco. There is a growing culture here that celebrates douchebaggery if there is money behind it. Old San Francisco money doesn't seem to act like this as much. The Pacific Heights crowd still has some class. It's usually some of the 22-year-old millionaires and business development girls in the Mission that say these horrible things. They mean it too. Most of them come from wealthy families, went to expensive schools, and have never struggled to survive. They have no grit and no mercy for those less fortunate than them.

 

What's going on in San Francisco is not about envying the wealthy at all. It's about having some humanity.

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^I don't know who that guy is, but there is a tendency for newcomers to a city to ignore or insult people who were there 20 or 25 years earlier putting things together. 

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There is basically no such thing as a "local business" anymore.  Pull back the curtain on your favor local restaurant or retailer and you'll find connections to the global supply chain.  Do the same with your favorite local professional services firm and you'll often be stunned at how far away they might have clients.

 

It works both ways of course.  Your typical manufacturer in this area has a bunch of customers in Mexico and China.  I know we do, and one of my old places did.  Our biggest was actually controversial during the '12 election because Bain owned them.

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Also you can't expect an army of nerds to be personable or understand cultures that aren't their own. Sure some are well-rounded, have people skills and have warm personalities, but face it, many have been in front of screens alone 16+ hours a day since elementary school. That's not the way to breed people persons.

 

Ummm.....have you noticed that our culture has been transformed into something the "nerds" of the 70s or 80s would relate to way more than the popular kids.  Online shopping?  Really?  "Gag me with a spoon"....

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Not sure why younger people don't understand that tons of things in the 80s were making fun of the 80s.  Any person with a brain knew what pop culture was generating was totally insane:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qb21lsCQ3EM\

 

Everything I see in the window of American Apparel looks like stuff art school students wore ironically to parties in the 90s. 

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Not sure why younger people don't understand that tons of things in the 80s were making fun of the 80s.  Any person with a brain knew what pop culture was generating was totally insane:

 

It was an era where we were quite comfortable making fun of ourselves.  Even the President did it.  Remember "begin bombing in five minutes"?

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Not sure why younger people don't understand that tons of things in the 80s were making fun of the 80s.  Any person with a brain knew what pop culture was generating was totally insane:

 

It was an era where we were quite comfortable making fun of ourselves.  Even the President did it.  Remember "begin bombing in five minutes"?

 

The '90s took itself (not individuals, but the culture) as a whole took itself deadly seriously. Making parody of rap or grunge simply wasn't allowed. You can blame MTV for that at least partially. Once rap and grunge hit the network was dead serious all the time and still is to this day.

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Not sure why younger people don't understand that tons of things in the 80s were making fun of the 80s.  Any person with a brain knew what pop culture was generating was totally insane:

 

It was an era where we were quite comfortable making fun of ourselves.  Even the President did it.  Remember "begin bombing in five minutes"?

 

The '90s took itself (not individuals, but the culture) as a whole took itself deadly seriously. Making parody of rap or grunge simply wasn't allowed. You can blame MTV for that at least partially. Once rap and grunge hit the network was dead serious all the time and still is to this day.

 

EmptyVee jumped the shark with "Road Rules". perhaps the first "reality show".

 

But you're right, the only rap parody I can recall (outside of Rush Limbaugh, who did a couple) was "White White Baby" on "In Living Color".  "Political Correctness"  played a role in this.

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Oh yeah, road rules.  Yawn!  MTV spent over a decade trying to find another Puck, but there could be only one. 

 

Rap was a parody of itself (the Fat Boys, early Beastie Boys) until Public Enemy, then gangster rap appeared and various cultural figures wanted it to be a Movement.  Arsenio Hall was a major player in this, as he and In Living Color destroyed Vanilla Ice, then turned their ire on any and all white entertainers.  Watch those old Arsenio clips -- he was eager to find his next victim, over and over again trying to corner white people into making some sort of comment he didn't approve of. 

 

The whole problem with Arsenio Hall and the other stuff from that time period is that it never actually identified the root causes of wealth inequity.  There was no discussion of the racially discriminatory lending practices of the FHA, for example -- instead any of that was overshadowed by Rush Limbaugh's post-Reagan welfare queen narrative. 

 

Meanwhile kids and teenagers who were (genetically?) programmed to side with whatever they perceived would "win" sided with black hip-hop culture, thus the sudden and dramatic split of white youth from the rock & roll to hypermasculine rap.  Early 1990s rap became the music of socially dominant whites who successfully tricked other whites into thinking they could successfully navigate black culture, should they ever even once in their life encounter a black person. 

 

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Real World came on before Road Rules, no?  Puck was on Real World..... SanFran iirc

 

One of my lab partners from high school was on the second Road Rules season

 

Question about "The Bay" for those who might know.  I have a friend who moved out there and he came back to visit with "The Bay" this and "The Bay" that.  He lives in Oakland.  Do people who actually live in SF call it "The Bay" or is that a term used by the metro population?

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Real World came on before Road Rules, no?  Puck was on Real World..... SanFran iirc

 

One of my lab partners from high school was on the second Road Rules season

 

Question about "The Bay" for those who might know.  I have a friend who moved out there and he came back to visit with "The Bay" this and "The Bay" that.  He lives in Oakland.  Do people who actually live in SF call it "The Bay" or is that a term used by the metro population?

Real World came on before Road Rules, no?  Puck was on Real World..... SanFran iirc

 

One of my lab partners from high school was on the second Road Rules season

 

Question about "The Bay" for those who might know.  I have a friend who moved out there and he came back to visit with "The Bay" this and "The Bay" that.  He lives in Oakland.  Do people who actually live in SF call it "The Bay" or is that a term used by the metro population?

 

Yeah true, it was first. 

 

Unreal World was at least unintentionally funny sometimes.  There was some carryover "don't take ourselves too seriously here".  Road Rules was a graphic illustration of GC's point.  Earnestness as a simulation of seriousness.  And no, not "that" Earnest....who was never funny.

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Question about "The Bay" for those who might know.  I have a friend who moved out there and he came back to visit with "The Bay" this and "The Bay" that.  He lives in Oakland.  Do people who actually live in SF call it "The Bay" or is that a term used by the metro population?

 

Yes, though it's more common in East Bay. In San Francisco, you say "SF" or "The City." The Bay would be used more when you're far away from home. I sometimes use it in Los Angeles when I'm down there since I've heard Angelenos say it.

 

In the metro area, people identify as City (San Francisco), Peninsula (San Mateo County), Marin (obvious), East Bay (Oakland, Berkeley, suburbs).

 

Then I think San Jose and Silicon Valley have their own terms. They're really separate metro areas that happen to be connected by suburbs. Of course the economies are all linked now with all the reverse commuters from San Francisco to the valley and "Man Jose."

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Thanks.  He seemed to be referring to the entire area (all areas you mention) as "the Bay."  He said it so frequently that we actually made a drinking game out of it one night we were out.  He had also grown a hipster beard since transferring out there last year, so we got to pick on him about that too.

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^^^

 

When I lived in Southern California I knew several people who grew up there and they always called it the "the Bay Area" and definitely not just "the Bay." On a local level my understanding is what C-Dawg described above.

 

If your friend starts using the word "hella" all of the time then you will know you really lost him. 

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^The entire area is referred to as "the Bay Area" both locally and nationally, but you're saying he dropped the "Area"?

 

Yes. It has been dropped. News media and stuff still calls it Bay Area, but kids don't watch traditional news. They get their information from Tech Crunch, Pando Daily, Reddit, Buzzfeed, and The Bold Italic. I hear it called "The Bay" all the time. Keep in mind hardly anyone in San Francisco (or Los Angeles) was born there...

 

Language and culture changes quick in the metro area as a result of the constant population turnover. There are a lot of terms in SF that don't exist elsewhere...hell, the gay community alone could write a dictionary. And tech workers have their own language too. It's a good way to differentiate yourself as "in the know" (Hollywood does the same thing- film productions have dictionaries of terms that outsiders don't know). San Francisco is a giant college town where each neighborhood is its own fraternity or sorority. Most people are basically the same (privileged, wealthy, somewhat liberal), but style of dress, language, etc. is taken very seriously. I have outfits for each neighborhood lest I get stared at. Marina outfits, Mission outfits, Haight outfits, Union Square outfits, FiDi outfits, Inner Richmond outfits, etc.

 

I have a theory that in monocultures (which San Francisco's social scene is becoming), people look to things other than race or income to differentiate themselves. San Francisco is becoming the most racially diverse place that isn't diverse (I think places like Toledo, Detroit, Buffalo, or Cleveland have way more cultural diversity). People can be pretty damn provincial. I know when I've worn nice clothes in the Mission, people have yelled "Marina" at me (and the whole concept of a term like "Marina" is ridiculous). That's why I had to purchase some hipster (hipster lite) outfits. I'm even thinking of growing a beard and buying plastic frame glasses for business reasons (though getting tats or piercing my face is never gonna happen). You've got to dress the part in San Francisco. Good God you do. How you talk and dress is a huge deal here. It feels like you're constantly being judged with a fine-toothed comb. It's taking the Tinder culture and applying it to real life. San Francisco blurs the line between online and offline. Imagine living life for the reason of fashioning your Tinder, Twitter, Facebook, Coffee Meets Bagel, etc. profiles to the absolute extreme. It is never-ending college...fun, but you eventually reach a point where you go, "I haven't been to a college in years, but I still live like a college kid."

 

I refer to San Francisco as "Greek Life for adults." And like Greek Life, you create new terms all the time. I think "The Bay" is part of this. I rarely hear people call it "Bay Area" anymore. There will be probably some much worse term on the near horizon. I'm guessing "Uber City" or "Tinder Town" or "Lean In Circle" or "Twitterville." In fact, The TL (Tenderloin) is now starting to be called The Twitterloin. At first I thought it was a joke, but it keeps popping up in more places. That's how big of an influence gentrification can have on a city. Once the money moves in, the names of places in San Francisco change. The Western Addition became NOPA (North of Panhandle). The Mission District is probably on its last leg as the remaining Latinos get evicted or have to leave (hit on in the articles posted). Parts of it could get a new name. They already have Dolores Heights.

 

Excelsior is becoming "Outer Mission" for marketing reasons (anything associated with the word "Mission" is gold). Mid-Market is also a new sub-neighborhood of Tenderloin and SOMA between 5th and Van Ness. Though it's got a very long way to full gentrification...at least 2-3 years. Apparently it used to be called Central Market.

 

And hella is still used, but it seems to be dying out. You won't hear that much in moneyed circles.

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^ wow somebody caught them a bad case of new move-in-itis lol!

 

^^^

 

When I lived in Southern California I knew several people who grew up there and they always called it the "the Bay Area" and definitely not just "the Bay." On a local level my understanding is what C-Dawg described above.

 

If your friend starts using the word "hella" all of the time then you will know you really lost him. 

 

i'll take hella and dewd over yeahyeahyeah anyday lol!

 

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^ wow somebody caught them a bad case of new move-in-itis lol!

 

I moved to SF a few years ago. It was a different city then (and half the price). Many of my original friends and the families I lived with are gone. It was more relaxed, friendlier, and much easier to find places to live. All this crap is new. As a working class person, I feel like I got in just in the nick of time. Natives and older transplants have left in mass (and taken their culture with them). It's now getting rare to meet a youngish person in core neighborhoods who has lived here more than two years (Richmond and Sunset still have some surviving "Old San Francisco"). It's no joke when people say the new Twitter HQ and Facebook IPO caused a sea change in the city's culture and demographics. It's happening at warp speed. It's like Dubai without enough new construction to keep pace. So the only option is displacement. I can't even keep up with the trends here anymore...

 

http://www.businessinsider.com/twitter-ipo-created-1600-millionaires-2013-11

 

I just know the "Twitterloin" is getting better, and no place in America needed gentrification more than there. You had all these gorgeous historic buildings sitting vacant at the core of the city's transit network in an area surrounded by some of the wealthiest neighborhoods in America (Nob Hill, Union Square, Hayes Valley, Mission District, etc.). It looked like early stage Toledo/Detroit collapse and made no sense at all. The Tenderloin used to be a little slummy before Twitter renovated the old Furniture Mart. There was not much down there except a few great restaurants and nightclubs. Now you have Twitter, Square, Yammer, Zendesk, Zoosk, and dozens of new nightclubs and restaurants. 1,600 people at Twitter just became millionaires. Though I don't directly benefit from that, I agree with tech boosters that it's the greatest thing to ever happen to the Tenderloin. There is going to a massive change in just the next year. Around 2,000 new apartments in the area are coming online in less than a year, almost all of them targeted at Twitter workers, which keeps older housing more available for us mere mortals. Some of this gentrification stuff is a huge positive in San Francisco in terms of producing small businesses on dead streets (though housing pressure is very bad). As great as the Mission used to be, it's important to remember that it also had some gang presence and crime issues. Much of it was not very vibrant. Even North Beach had its dark days.

 

Oakland got really bad for a while (still does have major crime problems), but now you can barely recognize Downtown, Lake Merritt, Temescal, etc. Oakland is perhaps the place being most dramatically altered by this tech boom. San Francisco was already mostly gentrified and it's full. Oakland is where most people go when they can't find housing in San Francisco. Many tech workers have moved there and fixed up a lot of historic buildings that were sitting vacant. TOD is also through the roof right now in East Bay (though sadly more in the suburbs). With BART and 24-hour busses, Oakland has a serious edge over far-flung parts of SF and the Peninsula IMO. While housing prices and rents have recently skyrocketed there, the office market is still way cheaper than SF or Silicon Valley. Downtown Oakland is ripe for some big tech headquarters. It's a small downtown (reminds me a lot of Toledo), but the pieces are in place for not only the great residential market, but also a major office boom.

 

It's usually one extreme or the other across the metro area. There are rich neighborhoods and there are poor neighborhoods, but hardly anything in between. Oakland actually has a more dramatic divide than San Francisco (compare parts of East Oakland to Downtown or Lake Merritt). It could be some of the most extreme income inequality in the country...

 

I think what's happening in the Bay Area will eventually become the norm nationwide.

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Fareed Zakaria had an interesting piece this morning on his GPS talkshow.  Switzerland is regarded as one of the most pro-business country in the world and recent outrage about the ratio of CEO/Executive pay to lowest paid workers has gained momentum.  A referendum was placed on the ballot that would have capped the ratio at 12:1.  It didn't pass and Zakaria said that was a good thing, it would have been a big mistake & led to top CEO talent & corporate HQ's leaving the country.  Something to think about.

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Fareed Zakaria had an interesting piece this morning on his GPS talkshow.  Switzerland is regarded as one of the most pro-business country in the world and recent outrage about the ratio of CEO/Executive pay to lowest paid workers has gained momentum.  A referendum was placed on the ballot that would have capped the ratio at 12:1.  It didn't pass and Zakaria said that was a good thing, it would have been a big mistake & led to top CEO talent & corporate HQ's leaving the country.  Something to think about.

 

That number is so artificially low it almost had to be a stalking horse referendum. 

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If I'm not mistaken, Google is suburban and self contained (much like Progressive) and Twitter is very urbanist.  Many, many studies on what differences that makes could get made I would say.

 

I still kick myself hard when I recall that I was registered for the Google IPO but never bought any.  :blerg:

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^Most of Google's young workers live in the city, and shuttle down to the suburbs. They have some suburban workers, but usually the older ones that are married. Twitter's workforce is almost all young and lives in the city.

 

Apple, Google, Facebook, Genentech, etc. workers usually live near private shuttle stops to avoid driving on the 101. It's much easier to sit in gridlock on a bus then in your car where you can't do anything.

 

It’s not an exaggeration to say that the relationship between the traditionally anti-urban values of the suburbs and anti-suburban attitudes of the city is at least partially responsible for this change in San Francisco — and by extension the rest of urban America as it, too, confronts the relentless, tech-centric logic of Silicon Valley.

 

Take the public transportation provided by corporate shuttle buses from the likes of Apple, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, and others. It’s not news that these shuttles, and the big digital tech companies that run them, are changing the fabric of San Francisco as we’ve known it. What feels new is that it’s not enough to say that change is coming soon. It’s already, very much here.

 

Especially given how contentious these shuttles — and the tech industry’s effect — on San Francisco have become lately. They’re virtually (and arguably physically) dividing the city.

 

On one hand, some have called the shuttles “a vivid emblem of the tech boom’s stratifying effect in the Bay Area” because they allow the “techy progeny” of Silicon Valley to be “launched into SF proper.” That the shuttles are “alienating everyone who isn’t in technology” — or that there’s simply too much tech for one city to take.

 

Others are of the mind that it’s simply time to get over it and recognize a new reality; cities change, neighborhoods rise and fall. That in fact a paradox of Silicon Valley is in its “distributing meaningful equity” to ordinary people who wouldn’t otherwise access such wealth. (And then there’s the logic that wonders whether public transportation is yet another bit of infrastructure that should be upended by the Valley’s “meritocratic“ spirit.)

 

Whichever side of this issue you’re on, it’s clear that we’re looking at a reversal of the historical norm: The workers that used to live in residential suburbs while commuting to work in the city are now living in the city, while the largest technology companies are based in the suburbs and increasingly draw their labor supply from dense urban neighborhoods.

 

http://www.wired.com/opinion/2013/09/mapping-silicon-valleys-corporate-shuttle-problem/

 

*SF is now breaking $$2,554 Per Square Foot in neighborhoods adjacent to tech shuttles:

 

http://sf.curbed.com/archives/2013/11/25/last_weeks_three_biggest_sales_2554_per_square_foot.php#more

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Take the public transportation provided by corporate shuttle buses from the likes of Apple, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, and others. It’s not news that these shuttles, and the big digital tech companies that run them, are changing the fabric of San Francisco as we’ve known it. What feels new is that it’s not enough to say that change is coming soon. It’s already, very much here.

 

There's one thing I don't think anyone picked up on here....even me, who is sharply critical of the monopoly status of most urban transit systems.

 

These buses are not (?) "public transportation".  They are indeed "mass transit", but of a private sector variant developed in response to the inadequacy of the existing systems, and a desire/willingness to pay for better amenities and a degree of exclusiveness.

 

Aberration based on local circumstance?  Or the result of nontraditional demand for mass transit encountering the political mindset of those who run it?

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