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Re: “Oakland Firefighters Say Their Department Is So Badly Managed, Ghost Ship Warehouse Wasn't Even In Its Inspection Database

Useful information to pass on to readers, no matter how contradictory, conflicting, self-serving, and chaotic it may be. This isn't yet another straightforward Oakland budget fight, pitting department against department, neighborhood against neighborhood for gaining more city funding and resources, politician jockeying for position against other politicians. This also involves defending reputation that one or one's fellow staffers bore any responsibility for those deaths.

This kind of infighting is often seen in both the public and private sector organizations when leaders are ineffectual, ignorant, inexperienced, or just not capable of gaining the respect of the people under their responsibility.

I think both MS Kaplan and Mr. Patton are correct that mismanagement starts in the Mayors office, extends thru the City Administrator, and is reflected in incompetent, ineffectual department heads and upper management.

An Oakland mayor does not need to personally have the management skills of ex NYC Mayor Bloomberg, but they have to know how to find a City Administrator who does.. And we don't have to go back to the City Manager form of government that we had before Measure X. Few cities of our size or bigger kept the City Manager structure as they grew.

Regardless of why Mayor Schaaf chose Sabrina Landreth as City Administrator, it is time for Landreth to move on and for Schaaf to break the pattern set by Dellums and Quan of selecting unexperienced or inexperienced City Administrators. Find someone with solid line management experience in a much bigger city, either at the top or just below the chain of command. Not a manager or administrator from a tiny city who you hope will grow into the job. We might well have to offer a much longer, sweeter contract than normal to get that City Administrator. We might have to recruit form the non-profit or the for-profit sectors.

We can't afford to keep stumbling on from one departmental disaster to another.

Posted by Len Raphael on 12/10/2016 at 8:39 PM

Re: “Coal Terminal Developer Suing City of Oakland, Seeking to Overturn Ban on Fossil Fuel Exports

mmarteeen, where are you seeing uncovered coal cars next to the 880 near Jack London? Those are covered oil tanker cars, my friend. They are bad bad bad and may contain Bakken crude, which is explosive and dirty, but it ain't coal.

Posted by Jessea Greenman on 12/10/2016 at 8:37 PM
Posted by Rick Gower on 12/10/2016 at 8:27 PM

Re: “Oakland Firefighters Say Their Department Is So Badly Managed, Ghost Ship Warehouse Wasn't Even In Its Inspection Database

There is a vast group of retired firefrighters who have eperience and training, that could be pqassed on to the now acive members, This cadre of firefighters, engineers, and officers, is wide and deep in experience, and manyu would be happy an proud to come to service for the city to train, educate, and have the history necessary to mainyain an excellent department We have at least three or four members who retired as chiefs of other departments, such as Richmond, South San Francisco, and other major departments in the bay area, who shouold have been considered for the chiefs job in Oakland.
Just contact the retirement office and you will find all the names and places of these dedeicated, highy trained individuals.

Posted by Rick Gower on 12/10/2016 at 8:26 PM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

I have one thing to say: Raiders, go to Las Vegas. Please.
Take your team, your rep, and your game somewhere else.
Why should Oakland go begging for this when we have residents who are hardcore fans getting turned out by greed and gentrification? Raiders were a part of Oakland culture but apparently we need to burn dollars at the feet of their owners to make them love us as much as we love them. Screw that.

Posted by whitney smith on 12/10/2016 at 8:25 PM

Re: “Oakland Firefighters Say Their Department Is So Badly Managed, Ghost Ship Warehouse Wasn't Even In Its Inspection Database

The fire chief is a retired fire Capt. from San Jose FD. When she interviewed for the position, the panel said she was the worst candidate they had. Were surprised she got the position. The Oakland city manager, was a friend of hers from city of San Jose. She was given the position. She is collecting a retirement and a salary from the City of Oakland. There others in the department, that were more qualified than her. That knew the city and needs of department. I am making a assumption, that they needed someone from the outside to cut costs.

Posted by Bea Burg on 12/10/2016 at 5:06 PM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

The citizens of Oakland should be very wary of Mayor Schaaf and her assertion on one hand that there will be no public money and on the other hand, the deal includes throwing in $150 million, the value of the (public) land, plus $350 million (plus $95 million to pay off Mt. Al) in infrastructure to be financed by private bonds and repaid from stadium revenues. The people of Oakland and the City Council need to ask a lot of questions on the record about this bond approach prior to approval. Who is left holding the bag if the revenues are not there? When and where has this private bond financing approach for public projects been used and what was the outcome? I am skeptical of any new, never tried wall street financing instruments. Many cities over the last 20 years have been holding the bag on projects that they wanted so bad, they were willing to experiment with non traditional financing. At the end of the day, the Mayor needs to be honest with the public. Don't play word games. I don't personally have a problem with the city giving away the land. The Redevelopment Agency acquired those parcels along Hegenberger Rd for the sole purpose of a new stadium construction project. I am worried that she will get out in front of this before knowing the details and once again for the citizens of Oakland, it will be ready, shoot, aim.

Posted by Gary Patton on 12/10/2016 at 5:02 PM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

Schaaf came into office insisting no public money for a stadium. Now she offers the spoiled owner of the Raiders public money. She wants the City to pour one or two hundred million dollars into bonds that would be repaid by anticipated tax revenues from development. These tax revenues should support and normally would support City services -- but here they would be diverted into paying off bonds that built stuff of benefit to the Raiders owner. Schaaf lies.

Posted by Charlie Pine on 12/10/2016 at 11:27 AM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

Wait... The city doesn't have enough money to staff basic things like fire and building inspectors, but thinks there is money for this? WTF?!?! Screw that! Raiders go away!

Posted by Bruce Ferrell on 12/10/2016 at 10:34 AM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

No, no, no! Football is not a sport. It's a glorified method by which society promotes the ongoing creation of traumatic brain injuries. There are so many better ways to spend that money.

Posted by Cyrus 1 on 12/10/2016 at 9:41 AM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

"Skin in the game" means nothing other than the assumption of financial risk by the citizens of Oakland. Oakland citizens have been here before because of the fantasies of electeds.

Oakland electeds love to hire consultants to cover their behinds. It seems to me with hundreds of millions of public dollars at stake the feedback from an independent financial consultant might be very useful as to the precise nature of the financial risks to us as a city.

In general sports arenas have not turned out to be of significant financial benefit to cities. This is important in light of the many shortcomings in Oakland regarding public safety due to lack of adequate resources. Homicides and deadly fires come to mind.

Posted by Hobart Johnson on 12/10/2016 at 7:14 AM

Re: “Beware a Bigger Clitoris


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Posted by Adebayo Fred on 12/10/2016 at 4:44 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Peter Wadsworth--the only one of the 36 victims who also lived there--was described as an "entreprenuer." I guess there is a pretty low standard for this word in the Bay Area...he apparently had nothing but a nascient business idea for cannibis salsa and he was living in this cheap illegal flophouse.

How did this "genius" actually make a living to support his rock and roll lifestyle? Where did his funds come from?

I have read eveything I can find on this tragedy...trying to follow the money...looking for actual fiscal clues to the funding of these rock and roll lifestyles amid blah blah blah "tributes." What is important remains hudden...the money trail that made these unproductive artsy party lifestyles work.

Many of the victims were students...more public money. Loans to make them productive and tax paying citizens. Loans that will never get paid. No federal student loans or grants should ever go for useless majors like "communications." These are disguised arts grants and social welfare. These are student loans that pay for four years of partying.

The people who were DJ's that night...are we supposed to believe those jobs were enough to SUPPORT them?

No. Look for other fund sources such as stamps...unemployment insurance...Section 8.

The rent Derick collected...document every penny of where it went.

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/10/2016 at 3:59 AM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Charles seems like a total troll. Seems like he judges these victims without any real knowledge. jumping to all kinds of conclusions. there is a special place for know it all a-holes like him. He has shown who his is.

Posted by Andy Kleiber on 12/09/2016 at 9:38 PM

Re: “Friends Remember Integral Bay Area Artists, Musicians, and Sound Engineers Still Missing after Ghost Ship Fire

Charles, have you read any of the many memorial articles about the victims?A clarinet teacher, a computer science graduate, radio Djs, a choir singing sheriff's deputy's son, a conservation trust worker, a mortuary employee, a Shazam employee, a classical pianist, a community organizer, a sound engineer, a filmmaker, a psychology grad student, school teacher, art therapist, a DJ, , an MIT grad lawyer, and several artists and musicians. I haven't read all of the obits, but i suspect the list of "real jobs" and accomplishments would grow. It's possible to get your point across without maligning the dead.

Posted by jesse jane on 12/09/2016 at 7:37 PM

Re: “Oakland to Vote on $350 Million Public Subsidy for New $1.3 Billion Raiders Stadium This Tuesday

Let's be clear. The actual subsidy is $445 million. $350 million plus the $95 million for Mount Davis. And then we need to look at the Bay Bridge, who Libby Schaaf's mentor Jerry Brown turned into an economic train wreck. We could have had a simple viaduct for $1.3 billion that turned into $6.4 billion.… If the stadium is started and comes up short on money who will be left holding the bag? The City of Oakland will have no choice but to add money to complete the project. What was once a $445 million subsidy will become ?????

Posted by Ralph Kanz on 12/09/2016 at 6:47 PM

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

I can think of jazz musician Louis Armstrong who worked shoveling filthy coal in New Orleans in a cart pulled by a mule...he played clubs on the weekends and at night. He worked. Worked his butt off to support himself and create an opportunity to make music.

Be an artist as much as you like..but why should society support your lazy butt with disability payments you don't deserve....with food stamps to buy steak while working people pay wages to buy pasta?

Plenty of people work responsibily while trying to also be artists. They don't live in illegal spaces full of drugs...they don't lie to get free money from the givernment...they don't collect money to pay for needed fixes and then party in Bali.

Name them. One by one. And explain how they paid for their rock-n-roll lifestyle.

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 6:04 PM

Re: “Stop Blaming Artists and Musicians for the Ghost Ship Fire. Blame People In Power Who Screwed Up.

See recent LA Times article about this fire and eviction Joy Newhart. Lived in a different illegal artsy warehouse in Bay Area....article says she lives "solely" on $1200 in disability payments monthly...but she is a "video choreographer" or some crap.

How do you afford your rock and roll lifestyle?

List each of the 35 adult victims....and determine that question. Follow the money.

How did they afford their rock and roll lifestyle?

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 5:09 PM

Re: “Artists Who Survived Oakland Warehouse Fire Discuss The Tragedy, Those Missing, Need for Safe Underground Spaces

What needs to happen is a Non-profit needs to be started to help fund spaces for living that are low cost. Obviously HUD isn't doing it's job properly, or is just plain overwhelmed. We need places like Habitat for Humanity to build a large facility with many rooms that are safe for this sort of practice / living / performance venues. I have thought about many building designs that are fire-safe venues for this activity. Some hotels are actually perfect venues for this sort of thing with a common area with many rooms surrounding it. Warehouses that are converted are also good but should be required to bring plumbing and wiring up to code.

Posted by Andy Despres on 12/09/2016 at 5:01 PM

Re: “Stop Blaming Artists and Musicians for the Ghost Ship Fire. Blame People In Power Who Screwed Up.

It is a wild accusation to suggest Child Protective Services--which had been at the warehouse recently--may have been paying for the hotel room where those children were safe the night of the party?

It is a wild accucation to suggest this fanatically self-centered narcissist Derick Almeda probably took money from whatever source he could? Which could include foood stamps? Unemployment insurance? Certainly the earned income credit with three kids!!!

It is a wild accusation to say Derick and his wife likely weren't officially reporting all their income? When there are people saying they grew pot and partied in Bali? So here i am like...they probably didn't, er, report all their income?

Given the spectacular hoarding and the it wild to suggest Derick is bipolar? And if he is bipolar....he probably tries to get SSI? Get a fat monthly check?

THE FACT THAT THESE ARTSY VICTIMS of their own bad lifestyle choices suck off public assistance to party all day is actually one of the most pressing and nationally relevant aspects of this story...and none of it is wild or off base. This is how it works. This is how you fund artsy bumhood.

This is how you afford a rock-n-roll lifestyle. Taxpayers underwrite all of it. You don't want this topic to get traction...the whole national arts "scene" lives off social welfare intended for people who NEED it but it funds bums who want to party and avoid real work.

Posted by Charles C. Eroster on 12/09/2016 at 4:59 PM

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