The culture that is San Francisco

by on December 13, 2017 at 9:13 am in Current Affairs, Political Science, Uncategorized, Web/Tech | Permalink

1 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 13, 2017 at 9:17 am
2 clockwork_prior December 13, 2017 at 9:18 am

Actually, wouldn’t that be the culture that is America, where resources are dedicated to providing for animals while people are homeless?

3 AndrewL December 13, 2017 at 9:25 am

are you saying Animal Shelters are unique to America and they don’t exist anywhere else in the world?

4 Jay December 13, 2017 at 10:25 pm

Proggers will tell you there are no homeless people in Progressive Western European countries.

5 M December 15, 2017 at 6:38 am

Germans don’t believe in animal rights…? Or something?

6 Jeff R December 13, 2017 at 9:44 am

We have our priorities in order.

7 The Anti-Gnostic December 13, 2017 at 10:16 am

Or to put it another way, a polity that does hip replacements for dogs is probably going to have trouble implementing socialized medicine.

8 Tanturn December 13, 2017 at 10:22 am

You could say our loyalties are leapfrogging over our fellow humans. How could you object to that, prior?

9 Sigivald December 13, 2017 at 1:11 pm

Because San Francisco is “America”, which is a homogeneous whole, right?

10 JWatts December 13, 2017 at 4:30 pm

It’s prior, his MO is turn any topic into an excuse to bash America, GMU, the Mercatus Center, etc.

11 A clockwork orange December 13, 2017 at 8:02 pm

I bet that robot could just take the midterm and final of a decision science course and get a C+

12 JWatts December 14, 2017 at 8:09 am

Nah, it doesn’t have any hands, so it can’t sign it’s name to the paper. No name, no grade.

13 M December 15, 2017 at 6:43 am

Also hatred of all other English speaking countries.

14 GoneWithTheWind December 14, 2017 at 10:39 am

Homelessness is the result of drugs, alcohol and mental illness. The ACLU is singularly responsible for putting the mentally ill on the streets and our governments inability and ineffectiveness in dealing with drugs has doomed drug users. Alcohol, the legal drug, has been with us forever and we humans seem unable to deal effectively with that either. What most experts agree on is you cannot “help” an alcoholic or addict by giving them money or anything that allows them to continue their bad habit. You might as well simply give them the drug of their choice. And the ACLU and that somewhat perverted interpretation of the constitutional right to be fatally self destructive prevents us from helping the mentally ill who find themselves homeless.

On the other hand it is relatively easy to help animals and will probably remain so as long as the ACLU stays out of it.

15 John B. Chilton December 13, 2017 at 9:24 am

The most San Francisco part of the article?:

“The city recently passed new legislation limiting the use of robots in city streets. Although the rules were aimed primarily at delivery bots, the SPCA has been ordered to keep the K5 off sidewalks or face a $1,000 daily fine.”

16 Matt December 13, 2017 at 10:20 am

Really? Because the more SF part of this article seemed to me to be “It is *your duty* to destroy these things if you see them.” [emphasis mine]

A supposed moral imperative to vandalism and destruction of private property. Doesn’t get more SF than that.

17 Al December 13, 2017 at 11:22 am

I agree that was a great one, however I enjoyed the level of violence in this one :

“San Francisco, you know what to do. If you see one of these robots, kill it. Hit it with your car, tip it over, set it on fire, whatever works. ”

I am awestruck each time I go to San Francisco.

18 Griffin3 December 13, 2017 at 9:29 am

If this robot cannot record who is smearing, say, barbeque sauce all over it’s sensors, or who is putting tarps over it … it doesn’t say much for the effectiveness of the robot.

19 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 13, 2017 at 9:39 am

I think a $6/hr robot is meant for only the most benign situations.

A city sidewalk at night seems misapplication.

You can’t cover much equipment damage at $6/hr

20 Brian Donohue December 13, 2017 at 9:36 am

Perhaps this story is a Rorsharch test. The way it reads to me, animal lovers are awarded 8 Pokémon power points in San Francisco in 2017, whereas the homeless only enjoy 7 Pokémon power points. But SPCA gets a 2-point deduction for creepy robot tactics, so… decision, homeless people.

To Ben Norton (whoever he is), the story is a revealing tale of awful capitalism lol.

21 NPW December 13, 2017 at 9:57 am

Mr Norton “Capitalism: instead of providing homes for homeless people, spend exorbitant sums of money creating robots that will prevent homeless people from making homes for themselves.:

I’m sure the SPCA would be willing to pay $6/hour to end homelessness. I’m glad that my boss doesn’t consider $6/hour exorbitant. If $6/hour is exorbitant to rent robot, how is $15/hour to flip burgers fair?

22 athEIst December 13, 2017 at 5:58 pm

Does Ben Norton live in SF.? It is a small city(47 sq mi) so if Ben lives there maybe he could invite the homeless up to in front of wherever he lives.

23 rayward December 13, 2017 at 9:42 am

The robot in question is on the sauce alright, but not the barbeque kind of sauce, for it seems the robot not only runs over children but fell into a water fountain. There should be a law requiring robots to be sober. This episode also offers a warning about autonomous cars: “Because the robot is semi-autonomous, Knightscope (and, potentially, the SPCA) can shift the blame for its actions. They only rented the robot; they didn’t tell it to do anything.”

24 NPW December 13, 2017 at 10:04 am

Rayward: “Get off my lawn! You’re going too fast! Damn robots!” Seriously though Ray, you realize mankind has had advancements in technology before that resulted in changes to the law, right? I get that you are a lawyer and interpret all of life from that perspective (and don’t argue, your body of work on this blog alone justifies the conclusion), but just because there will be legal implications does not mean self-driving cars aren’t a net benefit to society.

25 Bill December 13, 2017 at 11:30 am

The solution is simple.

Instead of robots

The animal shelter should to use their supply of

Free range

Pit bulls.

26 Bill December 13, 2017 at 11:32 am

drop the “to” in line three

27 Thor December 13, 2017 at 1:31 pm

Or add: “be able”

28 Bill December 13, 2017 at 5:20 pm


29 rluser December 14, 2017 at 6:58 am

This approach is likely to improve the lives of the homeless and the dogs.

30 Anon7 December 13, 2017 at 11:39 am

The city should be enforcing the laws against vagrancy so people don’t have to hire robots (even better the city could outsource that part of law enforcement to robots).

31 ninty December 13, 2017 at 12:36 pm

I live here.

The cops do chase the homeless away from downtown retail and richer neighborhoods, as well as hassle them in select other areas that seems to vary based on who is yelling and who donates to the PBS. Just like everywhere else.

We don’t throw them out, though, even though we’re a magnet (good services, good climate). That’s because we are San Francisco. We try to fix things, even if it is a hard slog.

Don’t like how we run our city? I’m sure you can find somewhere in Mississippi that better reflects your values.

32 Brian Donohue December 13, 2017 at 12:42 pm

“We don’t throw them out, though.”

Care to comment on black demographic trends in SF over the past 40 years? Diversity is tricky.

33 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 13, 2017 at 12:54 pm

I would put a bit of distance between gentrification and dumping.

I am surprised that link doesn’t include cross-jurisdictional dumping. It was common for one nearby SoCal city to ferry homeless to the border of another, until they were caught.

34 sort_of_knowledgable December 13, 2017 at 2:48 pm

SF has become more international. Whites went from over 70% of the population to less than half in the past 40 years.

35 msgkings December 13, 2017 at 3:08 pm

This. The black population has held steady in absolute numbers while the population of Asians and whites has risen.

36 Brian Donohue December 13, 2017 at 3:16 pm

Not this. in 1970, there were 96,078 blacks in SF, in 2010 48,870.

The Streets of San Francisco ain’t what they used to be. Ask Karl Malden, Michael Douglas, or OJ.

37 msgkings December 13, 2017 at 3:28 pm

Correction noted. Gentrification is a thing.

38 Brian Donohue December 13, 2017 at 4:36 pm

I got nothing against SF until local douchebags claim smug moral superiority based on their “hugs for the homeless” campaign or whatever, while presiding over a city that drives its poor minorities out in droves.

39 msgkings December 13, 2017 at 4:40 pm

Is gentrification the same as ‘driving’ people out? If so all the cities do that.

40 Brian Donohue December 13, 2017 at 5:06 pm

Jesus, you don’t understand the context here at all. SF douchebag sneers at Mississippi, blackest state in the union. “You should do what we morally superior folks do.”

Smug + clueless = ugly.

41 Brian Donohue December 13, 2017 at 5:09 pm

…and you, blithely throwing out ‘facts’ when you don’t know shit, then waving away your whopper with the word ‘gentrification’.

42 msgkings December 13, 2017 at 5:15 pm

Jesus Brian, who pissed in your cornflakes today? Bark at the douchebag if you must.

43 Anonymous December 13, 2017 at 11:59 pm

“Bark at the douchebag if you must.”

Guess who’s the douchebag in this situation.

44 msgkings December 14, 2017 at 9:56 am

@Anonymous: Brian, obviously

45 Sigivald December 13, 2017 at 1:14 pm

“Fix things”, “encourage them to continue and get worse”, whatever…

46 Anon7 December 13, 2017 at 2:01 pm

So the rich get to be insulated but the rest must endure the crappy (in more ways than one) behavior that the policy encourages. That pretty much sums up the Progressive approach to crime, welfare, public schools, etc.

47 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 13, 2017 at 2:32 pm

You didn’t follow my link. Bel Air was not insulated.

And there is a nontrivial question about what you can do with homeless who want to live where the homed would prefer they do not.

You can’t round them up and dump them on another city. Mass incarceration is at a limit already. And even if you could offer free transportation and housing vouchers, is any low cost of living location going to sign up to be on the receiving end? Volunteers?

48 Bernard Guerrero December 13, 2017 at 4:53 pm

I’m sure we can free up some space if we let out the stoners and dealers. I think it’s a win-win, at least the dealers are working.

49 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 13, 2017 at 5:09 pm


50 Anon7 December 13, 2017 at 10:18 pm

The policy should be to make it unpleasant rather than setting out the welcome mat. Enough people in the middle class city of Santa Ana, CA have gotten fed up to point where the local officials/enablers have been forced to start cracking down. Nudge/shove vagrants to the outlying areas (which does not include the Santa Ana riverbed) where they can create their own favelas.

51 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 14, 2017 at 10:14 am

It is not like Santa Ana is surrounded by virgin wilderness. “Pushing out” is a transfer to another jurisdiction.

(I believe the river and river parks are county jurisdiction.)

52 ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ December 14, 2017 at 10:17 am

By the way, this just came by on the radio. It covers all these issues: homeless, incarceration, drugs, home values

Amazing that it can happen in a place as idyllic as Eureka, but as Thiago used to say, “such is life ..”

53 Michael Gardner December 13, 2017 at 12:33 pm

Knightscope: R2D2 goes over to the Dark Side…

54 JosieB December 13, 2017 at 1:34 pm

Didn’t we read a couple years ago that there were more pets than children in SF?

Perhaps now there are more homeless people than pets.

Squeaky wheels, and all that.

San Francisco is a great place to visit but not a great place to live. I have done both, and I mean this.

55 Moelicious December 13, 2017 at 1:58 pm

One of my favorite articles of the year: animals, robots, Capitalism’s forgotten souls, feces, toppling toddlers, technological unemployment and dystopia

56 Yahoo mail login December 13, 2017 at 11:45 pm

Reaction to the news on social media has been overwhelming negative

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: