Mark Farrell Wants to Demonize the Homeless for Political Gain


Dang, Mark Farrell sure does hate homeless people. Though apparently the District 2 Supervisor has no problem using them as fodder to propel his fetid political career. He authored this Prop amending the police code to make it illegal “to place an encampment on a public sidewalk.” SFPD would have the authority to remove an encampment after giving just a 24-hour notice and offering ‘shelter options’. As we know, though, the options are pretty limited. Authorities would either bus folks out of the City via the Homeward Bound program or give them housing for 24 hours in a temporary shelter if housing was not available at the Navigation Center. But, seriously, one night is not even 24 hours of housing. They could also could toss homeless people’s seized property after 90 days - but eep! right now there are reports of people's belongings being tossed right away.

San Francisco has approximately 6,686 homeless residents according to the 2015 count, though many advocates say that is an undercount as families and youth are underrepresented. About half of them sleep on the streets every night. The City estimates there are 500-700 homeless residents in tents. There are only about 1,300 adult shelter beds - with a huge waiting list for 90-day beds (~900 on the waitlist any given night). There simply aren’t enough resources. Even great efforts like the Navigation Centers suffer from a fundamental problem. To quote Street Sheet: “The problem with the Navigation Center model is that it is not particularly successful in linking homeless people with long-term permanent housing because there is no housing to be linked up with.”

Prop Q isn’t just cruel, it’s arguably unconstitutional. In August 2015, the Department of Justice announced that these types of ordinances criminalize the status of being homeless and violate the 8th Amendment to the Constitution.

People for True Homeless and Housing Solutions released a short video on Proposition Q, which breaks down Prop Q, and really highlights the absurdity of it. 

Ultimately, this isn’t about helping homeless people. It’s about getting Mark Farrell’s name out there as a “homeless advocate” so that he can run for Mayor, similar to how Gavin Newsom did with 2002’s “Care Not Cash”. But it's more than just Farrell that deserve the blame: Prop Q was sponsored by Supervisors Wiener, Tang, Farrell ("Team WTF") and Cohen. Shame all four of them. We say fuck no.

What might be most frustrating about the fight over Prop Q is that it's distracting all of us from the measures that will actually fund housing for the homeless: Prop JProp K, and Prop S. Please vote yes on those three for real solutions to homelessness. 

Prop Q: Demonize the Homeless for Political Gain - Fuck No 😡

Scott Wiener's Votes Disrespect Colin Kaepernick's Protest

In a recent debate with Jane Kim, his opponent in the race for San Francisco’s seat in the State Senate, Scott Wiener said he respects Colin Kaepernick’s protest of the national anthem. But while he’s served on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, Wiener has repeatedly voted against police reform.

Wiener has had multiple chances to stand with people of color in San Francisco calling for police reform. But every time there’s been a contested vote on police reform, he’s voted on the side of the Police Officers Association against reform:

  • December 16, 2014Wiener opposed a non-binding resolution calling for police reform in the wake of the killing of Michael Brown and the protests in Ferguson. The Examiner later reported that the lobbyist for the SF Police Officer Association threatened to break off ties with any Supervisor who supported the resolution.

As Mark Leno’s failed attempt to make modest reforms to the Police Officers Bill of Rights shows, any meaningful police reform efforts in California will require state legislators who are willing to stand up to the law enforcement lobbyists. Leno has been a champion for police reform, and this November voters will decide whether Jane Kim or Scott Wiener will replace him.

Here in San Francisco, there is a growing consensus that the Police Officers Association is the biggest barrier to police reform. Wiener has been endorsed by the POA in every election he’s run, and every time there’s been a contested vote on police reform, he’s voted with the POA against reform.

So it’s great that Wiener respects Colin Kaepernick’s protest calling for police reform. But Scott Wiener's actions as an elected official disrespect Kaepernick and everyone else who is working on the reforms needed to address the crisis of police shootings of unarmed black and brown Americans.

And hey, @kaepernick7: if you’re serious about making police reform happen in California and San Francisco, then we need you to support Jane Kim for State Senate! Jane has a track record of standing up to the Police Officers Association. She voted for all of the reforms listed above. Will you join us in standing with Jane?

Endorsement Meetings 8/6 & 8/20

What's up, Leaguers!

Are you ready for this crazy November election? Because there are sooo many propositions on the ballot, 17 state and 26 (we think) local ones, we're starting earlier than ever this year and splitting our endorsements into two batches. Join us on August 6th for our first of two endorsement meetings!

We'll be discussing the state propositions and some of the local propositions for this election, then voting on the League's official position. If you've donated (which you can do on the spot) and volunteered four or more hours in the last year, you can vote for your favorites...but even if you can't, this is a fun opportunity to learn about the big races and get ready for the election. This meeting is also your chance to sign up for election volunteer opportunities, like pub crawls!

Saturday, August 6, 2-5pm
Thee Parkside
1600 17th Street at Wisconsin
RSVP on Facebook or at:
We'll be on the patio. Thee Parkside is kid-friendly. Bring cash for drinks and food. The carne asada tater tots are the bomb.

And mark your calendar for August 20th for our second endorsement meeting. We'll be tackling all of the local candidate races and the rest of the local propositions. 

Saturday, August 20, 2-5pm

The Eric Quezada Center for Culture and Politics
518 Valencia
RSVP on Facebook or at:


We do not have speakers for ballot measures or candidates at our endorsement meetings. We present our research, discuss the contests, and conduct a member vote. You are welcome to grab a beer with us and participate in the discussions at the endorsement meeting, but we ask that any candidates or paid campaign staff leave the room during the discussion of their contest.

Ed Lee’s “Transportation 2030” Ballot Measure Is Meaningless, Hypocritical, and Divisive at the Same Time

UPDATE: On Friday, February 26, the Mayor removed the ill-conceived Transportation 2030 from the June ballot! Thank you, Mayor Lee!


ORIGINAL POST: Mayor Lee: it’s not too late. Please take this measure off the ballot, and let’s all work together on a real transportation funding ballot measure for November.

Muni Potrero Yard

On the same day that Mayor Ed Lee vetoed the Bike Yield ordinance, he announced a ballot measure for the June 2016 election about transportation funding called “Transportation 2030: Smart Investments for a Better Future" (PDF).  It’s less than three pages double-spaced, but it manages to be simultaneously meaningless, hypocritical, and divisive. Here’s the tl;dr version:

  1. It’s meaningless. It’s a non-binding declaration of policy. 
  2. It’s hypocritical. It purports to implement the “recommendations of the “Transportation 2030” Task Force, but the Mayor already fell two years and $140 million behind on implementing those recommendations when he blocked attempts to put the Vehicle License Fee restoration on the ballot in 2014!
  3. And it’s divisive. It says no new transportation revenues should be used for Muni’s operating expenses for the next fifteen years! Why? Because the Mayor wants more leverage to push back in labor negotiations with MTA workers. This artificial separation of the MTA’s capital and operating budgets also threatens to pit Muni advocates (that require both capital and operational money) against bike and pedestrian advocates (mostly capital expenses).  

Let’s take a closer look, shall we?

Read more

Hey Tech Buses: Just Pay Your Fair Share, Take Two

What the SF League of Pissed Off Voters’ Wants from Tech Commuter Buses

Tech buses in the bike lane

(Photo by Sean Rea.)

Ten months ago, the League weighed in on tech buses with our post “Hey Tech Buses: Just Pay Your Fair Share, Please.” The SFMTA and City ignored what we felt like were reasonable requests. Since then, the pilot program has gone on to litigation. The judgment is slated for mid-December. [Note: The League is not part of the lawsuit.]

On Tuesday, November 17, the SFMTA Board will vote on the proposed permanent program, and we want to weigh in with our position and call attention to a few points we feel are really important and have been omitted by the press reporting on the final pilot findings.

The TL;DR version is this:

  • The pilot has not achieved its goal of eliminating safety and traffic issues.
  • The City is not receiving the data it needs to manage this program.
  • The City is not collecting fees that correlate to the impacts of the commuter buses.
  • The City is expanding the program before the pilot has concluded.
  • The City is not being completely transparent on the study conclusions.
Read more

Julie Christensen Votes Against Raises for Non-Profit Workers

On March 3, 2015, Julie Christensen was the swing vote against giving low-paid workers at non-profits providing City services a small cost-of-living raise. These non-profits provide vital services like mental health care, staffing homeless shelters, and violence prevention. Their workers are struggling with the skyrocketing cost of living in San Francisco. Meanwhile because of the economic boom, the City budget has never been larger. This is a real world example of why the League of Pissed Off Voters supports Aaron Peskin for District 3 Supervisor!

Read more about this vote in this Examiner article.

The Lobbyists Are Voting for Julie Christensen

Julie Christensen

One of the key ways we try figure to out what’s going on with San Francisco is by following the money. And in the race for District 3 of the Board of Supervisors, the lobbyist money is going in one direction: for Julie Christensen. The Ethics Commission Campaign Finance Dashboard shows that lobbyists have contributed $32,350 for Christensen compared to only $2,000 for Peskin.

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Don't Believe Airbnb's Fear Mongering

Confused by those sketchy ads about how Prop F will have "neighbors spying on neighbors?" Read this take from a lawyer explaining why you shouldn't believe Airbnb's B.S. Please vote #‎YesonF


Dear Airbnb, Can You Pay Us Back?

We're so inspired by Airbnb's letters to San Francisco, we're sending them our own love letter. Vote yes on Prop F! #‎airbnbfail

Dear Airbnb, Can You Pay Us Back?

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Open Letter to BART Board of Directors

The League of Pissed-Off Voters urges BART Directors, BART General Manager, and the Alameda County District Attorney to be on the right side of history — join community organizations, transit advocates, social justice leaders, and thousands of multiracial allies fighting for Black lives.

On November 28, 2014, fourteen protesters locked themselves to BART trains at the West Oakland station. Instead of citing and releasing protesters, or charging them with the same minor infraction applied to the thousands of multiracial allies that have blocked buses, trains, and traffic, a harsher penalty has been discriminatively applied.

Please help us by calling and emailing the BART Board of Directors, and tell them to drop the charges against the BlackFriday14:
(510) 464–6095
[email protected]

Transit advocates, including a member of the League’s Steering Committee, joined BART Directors Rebecca Saltzman and Nick Josefowitz as they rode BART’s new late night bus to shine a light on this issue and request support for a potential resolution calling for the demand for restitution and criminal charges be dropped against the group of protesters known as the BlackFriday14.

The League believes that the BlackFriday14 have paid significant restitution for their protest. They were held in the Santa Rita Jail and Glenn Dyer Detention facility, and they have expended significant time and resources in their legal proceedings. We call on the BART Board of Directors to pass the following resolution to urge District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley to drop the charges against the BlackFriday14.

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Paid for by the San Francisco League of Pissed Off Voters. Financial disclosures available at


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