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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: News

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

Why don't the artists make Christmas ornaments and wreaths that they can sell to make money for rent? You know, things that people want and need, things they can relate to.

Posted by Francesco on 12/07/2016 at 5:20 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

John NoMoniker:

You obviously did not read my post. You spent too much time looking for a way to make an ad hominem attack - using my views on a completely unrelated subject and quoting out of context - to try to typecast me as an evil person (all Republicans are evil, right?) and as someone that is saying bad things because they have a different view than yours.

And, btw, I am a registered Democrat and I voted for Clinton. So, try to be less shallow in your thinking and grow up. Personal responsibility works better than being a victim. It is about being an adult.

I guess you think it is OK for cool dudes to create unsafe environments.

Try to appreciate that your view is not the only one and maybe, just maybe, you are wrong. "We used to have the luxury....." Who is "we" - the readers that agree with you? Only, the righteous ones only that meet with your approval?

Posted by Michael Good on 12/07/2016 at 1:43 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

As usual, "suck it up buttercup" trolls are in control of this comment section. We used to have the luxury of ignoring these heartless jackasses, but since they have as of late leveraged enormous political power (one of their own is the future POTUS), we can no longer afford to ignore their venom.

Let's look at some other comments (accessible via their public profiles) from some of the pro-crackdown people on this thread to find their philosophical leanings. If you are a hardline, trickle-down economics-boosting, unabashedly pro-cop Republican you will relate to them. For everyone else (let's not forget that 4% of Oakland voted Republican in the last election), these quotes may give you pause before you give their voices any credence in this great city:

Garry Ovalbach: "How about increasing rents? Bring in wealthier people to Oakland and have the wealth trickle down? There are many other affordable cities surrounding Oakland that can be a place to live and Oakland a place to work. Affordable housing at this point is a pipe dream. Support rent increases folks."

Michael Good: "...the [police] union needs to be even more vigilant to protect its members - the public moods and emotions along with protesting activists can drive decisions that are not particularly thoughtful, clear and fair - police "discipline" driven by political committees tempted to pander."

Posted by JohnNoMoniker on 12/07/2016 at 1:15 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

Y'all keep on saying there needs to be a crackdown or code enforcement. While I don't want another tragedy like Ghost Ship to happen, you have to understand what helps to create this. We live in one of the most...if not the most expensive region in the US. All though in recent months there has been a bit of a freeze in median price of the rental market, your average non-tech worker resident (for example, artists and creative types) cannot afford to pay $1,600 + a month for a hole-in-the-wall studio in Downtown Oakland. Also, there aren't a lot of nightlife options anywhere past 2 am. I will say it is a lot more complicated than that but the combination of the two definitely encourages people who live in warehouses and are able to supply space for nightlife events to go that route. Personally, I think a program like the one in New York (can't remember the name) which helps warehouses get up to residential building code would be a better middle ground solution.

Posted by Joshua Gaerlan on 12/07/2016 at 12:45 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

No one is being "forced" to live in unsafe warehouses. Those that do so are making a choice. They choose to live in one of the most expensive places to live in the country in order to meet some other social and cultural needs they perceive must be more important than safe and decent housing. Not a choice most would make - but the choice they make. Using "forced" as the description is victim mentality.

It is not the taxpayer's job nor is it the local government's job to subsidize those that want to live in the fringes by artistic choice. We have too many other problems - be it housing for the poor (not 20 somethings making a lifestyle choice), enough food for people, education and public safety from crime and violence.

This article is not about living conditions. This article is about concerts, parties and the like. There you have people invited into often unsafe and unlicensed facilities. Those responsible for arranging the gathering (and charging for it!) are in a whole new realm of accountability for the safety of others. Accountability for ensuring the safety of others and having these gatherings go hand in hand, whether you like it or not. That is why the regulations are there. Not getting caught and/or thinking you know safety limits better than the regulators is no OK. Especially when the victims, their families and the public at large are the ones who take the hit.

No doubt about it, this fire was a terribly tragic, preventable disaster. That is not a reason for witch hunts but nor is it a reason to encourage or permit people to continue to make dumb and irresponsible decisions.

Posted by Michael Good on 12/07/2016 at 11:34 AM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

my heart breaks at the loss of so many young artists and muscians, who are the soul of Oakland. After the end of fundraising for the victims and families,
a new fundraising drive should start to help fund safety up grades for the many warehouses used by Oakland's artists. Oakland Technology companies
such as Pandora and Uber could spear head this effort . It sems technology, although a huge benefit for Oakland, is also the driver of high rents which are forcing some into unsafe warehouses.

Posted by Judy.Belcher on 12/07/2016 at 9:09 AM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

Safety is obviously the most important issue. All venues must be safe, as I would have hoped everyone has learned from this awful tragedy.

Beyond that, we don't need bureaucratic interference with our artistic events. But we cannot do without safety.

Posted by Dan Asimov on 12/06/2016 at 10:58 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

A crack down is needed. Landlords rent to people and the people then break the lease by doing illegal activities. Often jimmy rigging electrical or plumbing to accommodate more people.The Ghost Ship better wake people up at City Hall.

Posted by Garry Ovalbach on 12/06/2016 at 8:34 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

No one should die for the sake of art. Art does not get murdered when it follows the rules in a gallery. It gets better because if you want it bad enough you will jump through the hoops to get it. The can do spirit of humans has taken harder blows than this and thrived. This jackass Ion needs to be charged with murder. He is a drugged out poser that doesn't care about the lives lost. It's all about him. I bet the criminal in him wants to hide, but the attention whore side has to go for the light. What if you were at the party? Instead of complaining why don't you go out and help the underground be safe. Get a code book, read it and develop a working relationship with a fire marshal. You could do a whole series of articles on what it takes to be safe and why it so important. Or, you can sit safe behind your computer, whine and throw rocks.

Posted by Patrick Farmer on 12/06/2016 at 8:15 PM

Re: “If Oakland Cracks Down On Underground Warehouses, It Will Snuff Out The City’s DIY Soul

"If Oakland attempts to shut down every party that doesnt have the right permits, even if its for the admirable reason of preventing another Ghost Ship disaster, then it may inadvertently snuff out the beautiful do-it-yourself spirit that animates so much of the citys soul. "

--That is so f-ed up.

Posted by Tove Beatty on 12/06/2016 at 6:14 PM

Re: “'I'm Going To Get My Gun': Event Organizers at Ghost Ship Accused Derick Almena of Theft, Threats

OMG. Dude needs a criminal defense lawyer and fast. Holy moly. Who gives the proverbial shit about how he feels? The NERVE of this BASTARD saying he didn't have enough money when he can pay for a luxury hotel (the Marriot) and was collecting market-level rents for a complete death-trap. You KNOW he is spending that money right now and, as per his poor wife (who he pulled out of rehab against her parents' wishes, and she is the mother of three who should probably be sober or close to it, but is instead with a man with a history of meth, which would explain guns, bullets and crossbows and locking people in), saying that they didn't "have enough money" is a total laugh, if it wasn't so insanely tragic.

Where did you get your money for a hotel that you're still staying in #derekion ? And for all those trips over the years on which you collected the wood items that burned in your hoarder's paradise into which you brought vulnerable people and then stole from them #derekion #ghostshipfire? To answer your rhetorical question about whether you are to blame: I see 36 counts of negligent homicide/involuntary manslaughter and a bunch of other bad stuff (karma's a bitch) coming your way.

(Some deluded folk keep saying you have a side to the story but they can't cite it nor will they defend you or say that you are a nice guy. Looks like the devil is about to get his due after letting 36 souls burn in Hell.)

Posted by Tove Beatty on 12/06/2016 at 6:10 PM

Re: “'I'm Going To Get My Gun': Event Organizers at Ghost Ship Accused Derick Almena of Theft, Threats

Dear Derick Almena, I wish you the best in your transition to art director at San Quentin prison for the next 40 years. If you don't get your money from someone at least you won't have to lock 'em up!

Posted by Joe Sampson on 12/06/2016 at 12:36 PM

Re: “Oakland Landlord Evicts Tenant, Then Hangs Pro-Trump Billboard on Building

HA HA - someone was able to deface the t-RUMP sign by throwing paint at it! Now I can smile when I drive by...

Posted by D Silverman on 12/06/2016 at 12:13 PM

Re: “'I'm Going To Get My Gun': Event Organizers at Ghost Ship Accused Derick Almena of Theft, Threats

its about what can be expected in a situation like that. Maybe this guy isn't a saint but if your running a 'business' or a 'counter culture' center that caters to financially challenged and unemployed aspiring artists then your going to also get alot of low class types that are just there to take advantage of the situation, then what are you supposed to do? be the 'pig' that's always bitching and a stik in the mud, no one in that scene wants to be the 'man' or the authority, everyone wants to be the cool , laid bakc dude. so the rest of these characers who decided to party in such a place all night KNOW the risks, they know situations like this have ended in chaos. now everyone is just pointing fingers at the 'bad guy', what was he supposed to do? He wasn't one of the people 'living' there illegally.

Posted by Sam Khoury on 12/06/2016 at 12:40 AM

Re: “'I'm Going To Get My Gun': Event Organizers at Ghost Ship Accused Derick Almena of Theft, Threats

Oh c'mon, Darwin! Some guy wrote that he "think(s) this person may be unstable?" Some guy who you previously reported had declined to comment on the "harassment?" Some guy you previously reported as Mr Almena's former friend?

You're reporting Lewis and Elvey's allegations againt Mr. Almena as if they were true, while dismissing Mr. Almena's allegations against Ms. Porter as irrelevant.

"Mob, ready your pickaxes!"

Posted by Edward Cervantes on 12/05/2016 at 12:03 PM

Re: “Oakland Landlord Evicts Tenant, Then Hangs Pro-Trump Billboard on Building

Greg Broderick .... excellent post and right on target!

If you've lived in the unit for 21 years at a low rent threshold, would you have not saved up enough money to purchase a small home/condo for yourself? Although I feel for the tenant, he has no right to live in that unit indefinitely.

City of Oakland Rent Control Just Cause Measure EE needs to be revamped. An example is that it is helping keep the wealthy remain in (low) rent controlled apartments, while affording them the ability to become landlords themselves. I have seen liberal judges rule against landlords attempting to evict tenants for making modifications to their units without consent of the property owner (hello, Ghost Ship fire).

Again although I feel for tenants in bad predicaments, these tenants should have planned for the future.

Posted by Anika Brown on 12/05/2016 at 11:44 AM

Re: “'I'm Going To Get My Gun': Event Organizers at Ghost Ship Accused Derick Almena of Theft, Threats

Why are these allegations only now coming out, and why was no action taken apparently with respect to these accusations ? Were they not filed or not followed up on? Who took the reports? What government officials have been involved in oversight on any level, related to the 1) events, 2) commercial leasing, 3) tax-filings, 4) business licenses, 5) insurance and labor laws, 6) fire code, all of it...this gets stranger by the minute.

More investigations clearly appropriate into this matter.

Posted by Bennett Hall on 12/05/2016 at 9:59 AM

Re: “Oakland Landlord Evicts Tenant, Then Hangs Pro-Trump Billboard on Building

I hope that Alkebulan-Ma'at is getting tenant/legal counseling to assess his rights in this situation and hopefully keep his home!!!!

Posted by EASt on 12/05/2016 at 12:07 AM

Re: “Oakland Landlord Evicts Tenant, Then Hangs Pro-Trump Billboard on Building

Not sure that someone over 60 can be thrown out without the LL taking proper measures to do so. The Trump sign has nothing to do with laws protecting tenants.

Posted by Francesca M. Austin on 12/04/2016 at 8:16 PM

Re: “Oakland Landlord Evicts Tenant, Then Hangs Pro-Trump Billboard on Building

Trump and his supporters never write "Make America Classy" on their hats.

Posted by Lily A Jafarian on 12/04/2016 at 4:38 PM

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