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Crosscurrents

Daily news roundup for Wednesday, June 1, 2016

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Neon Tommy, used under CC BY. Cropped and resized.
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Here's what's happening in the Bay Area, as curated by KALW news:
 

Why Gov. Jerry Brown endorsed Hillary, despite a bitter history with the Clintons // LA Times

“After carefully avoiding any involvement in the Democratic presidential primary, Gov. Jerry Brown dropped his neutrality – and looked past his bitter history with the Clintons – to endorse Hillary Clinton on Tuesday.

“In an open letter to Democrats and independents, Brown urged voters who do not want to see a Donald Trump presidency to stop the infighting and rally behind Clinton, the Democratic front-runner.

‘This is no time for Democrats to keep fighting each other,’ he wrote. ‘The general election has already begun.’”

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Interim SF police chief boasts stellar track record // SF Examiner

“Interim San Francisco police Chief Toney Chaplin… has already started reaching out to the communities most at odds with the San Francisco Police Department. He has met with NAACP leadership, held a community meeting in the Bayview the day after a sergeant fatally shot an apparently unarmed woman — prompting the resignation of ex-Chief Greg Suhr and Chaplin’s promotion to interim chief — and spoke with at least one of the hunger strikers known as the ‘Frisco 5,’ who famously called for Suhr’s ouster.

“Edwin Lindo, one of the hunger strikers who has worked with Chaplin in the past, said he’s glad Suhr is no longer with the Police Department and has an open mind about Chaplin.

“’He wants to do what’s right,’ said Lindo. ‘The question is, are we gonna have a new Police Department that’s willing to stand up to the [Police Officers Association]?’”

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San Francisco Reaches Agreement With Police Union on Body Cameras // KQED News

“San Francisco’s long languishing effort to pin cameras on its police officers appeared close to completion Tuesday evening, with statements from the city’s mayor and head of the police officers’ union announcing a compromise.

“If the city Police Commission approves the new policy emerging from negotiations that for months appeared to be stalled, the first deployment of cameras could hit the streets by Aug. 1, according to the mayor’s office.”

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Design Your Own Housing Policy With UC Berkeley Interactive Page // Curbed SF

“Developing housing in San Francisco is like trying to raise hot house orchids: Get it just right and something beautiful will blossom, but too much or too little of any one element and the whole affair could dry up and blow away.

“With that in mind, UC Berkeley’s Terner Center for Housing Innovation launched itsHousing Development Dashboard, a suite of digital calculators that anticipate, as much as such a thing is scientifically possible, how four cities including San Francisco can calibrate policies to yield the largest net output of housing.

“Variables include the fees per unit, the percentage of affordable units required by law, changes in city population or parking density, and permit times. Adjust one element up or down and watch the map change. Adjust all of them and see it go positively crazy.”

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San Francisco Bay: $12 parcel tax for wetlands has big financial backers // East Bay Times

“When environmentalists wade into political contests, they're almost always outspent by big business.

“But that's not the case with Measure AA, a $12 annual parcel tax that will appear on the June 7 ballot in all nine Bay Area counties to fund wetlands restoration and flood control projects around San Francisco Bay's shoreline.

“Environmental groups have linked arms with big business this time around, in essence becoming part of the Goliath in the David vs. Goliath contest. The coalition is overpowering anti-tax groups in fundraising by a huge margin, according to campaign spending reports released Friday.”

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100 People in Oakland Will Get Free Money as Part of a Basic Income Experiment // Motherboard

“Starting sometime this summer, a small group of people in Oakland will get free money in what may be the nation’s first basic income experiment.

“The money won’t be coming from the government, though. Instead, Silicon Valley’s Y Combinator, a business incubator for tech startups backed by venture capital, will be trying to solve a problem that the tech industry is at least partially responsible for.

“As more and more blue collar industries become automated, and artificial intelligence, self-driving cars, and drones threaten to eliminate the need for a human workforce in a wide array of sectors (taxi and truck drivers, news curators, fast food workers, etc), those who think about the future are starting to wonder how those who are out of work are going to survive.”