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Recent Comments

Re: “Attorneys Travel to Florida to Help Celeste Guap, Victim of Bay Area Police Sex-Crime Scandal

The crowdfunding piece is a little vague as it is not restricted to supporting her legal case. Glad folks are stepping up, though.

Posted by MichaelSiegel on 09/07/2016 at 7:52 PM

Re: “East Bay Progressives Dominated the Election

I agree that EBX is a little flaky in its use of the liberal and progressive terms. In Oakland Libby Schaaf was a founding member of Make Oakland Better Now, an advocacy group dedicated to increasing the number of police and cutting everything else in City government. MOBN also advocated for a rainy day fund / reserve instead of worker pay increases. She was an austerity politician until she ran for mayor and realized she needed left wing votes to win. Hopefully the Express is not an unwitting pawn in a plan to defraud Oakland voters (it remains to be seen who the real Schaaf is). Unfortunately your endorsement of her obscured decidedly unprogressive votes such as trying to prevent protests at the Port of Oakland.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by MichaelSiegel on 11/15/2014 at 9:46 PM

Re: “Chronicle Needs to Correct Headline on Oakland Black Males Story

Another erroneous aspect of the data: it seems to rely solely upon OUSD graduation rates. This could leave out many of our young Black men in Oakland: including those who attend charter schools (in Oakland or elsewhere), those who graduate each year from from private and parochial schools (in Oakland and elsewhere), and even those who attend public school in other cities, including Berkeley, Emeryville, and Hayward.

5 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by MichaelSiegel on 08/19/2013 at 9:01 PM

Re: “Sheriff Sought Controversial Surveillance Software

Wow! Thanks for breaking this issue. It's critical that we keep shining light on the creeping mass surveillance police state. These folks have too much money, and too many toys, at their disposal.

8 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by MichaelSiegel on 03/06/2013 at 10:59 AM

Re: “Breaking: Oakland City Attorney Says Ranked-Choice Voting Must Be Used in Recall — If There Is One

Interesting. You'll need to update that link to Matier & Ross, though. This one works: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?…

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by MichaelSiegel on 05/02/2012 at 8:26 AM

Re: “A Radio Story

Thanks for this vignette. These are "pretty epic" times, to say the least. At some point, we need some scribes who will weave together accounts like this, and create a fuller and artistic history of the "Oakland Commune."

Posted by MichaelSiegel on 11/12/2011 at 3:24 PM

Re: “Why Curfews Don't Work

Thank you for this informative piece. To respond to Max A's comment, which is a common refrain, i.e., "You who criticize gang injunctions/youth curfews, what's your solution?," I offer a few points.

1. It is a myth that cops don't have enough tools. Has anyone looked at the California Penal Code recently? Or any of the federal laws that come to bear? How about immigration laws? CDCR guidlines? City of Oakland ordinances? OPD literally has thousands of tools at its disposal, to prosecute everything from loitering, littering, and jaywalking to RICO violations and first-degree murder. The problem is NOT the lack of tools. The problem is how the tools are used, who is using the tools, why particular tools are being used, and so forth.

2. We can't accept the logical fallacy that anyone who criticizes a particular policy proposal must immediately offer an alternative. If something doesn't work, it doesn't work. Period. If I tell you that gang injunctions don't reduce crime, and I cite to studies and such that support that proposition, I don't suddenly become responsible for solving the age-old question of how to reduce crime. The fact remains, there is no proof that gang injunctions work. There is no proof that youth curfews work. The criticism can stand there -- there is no need to go further.

3. That said, as an Oaklander, and a concerned citizen, I'm down for the next conversation. Let's talk about something that does work.

4. On the "need" for suppression. I would ask Max A. (or Larry Reid, or Ignacio de la Fuente, or Tammerlin Drummond, or Chip Johnson) to point to an example where suppression is a long-term solution. As far as I can tell, a focus on "suppression" -- read, "lock-em up" -- will lead to incarceration, which will lead to more prisoners, which will lead to more people subject to the oppressive horrors of prison, which will lead, a few years down the road, to more broken people being released to our community. Suppression = incarceration, no? And incarceration doesn't read to rehabilitation, right? So where does suppression get us? Ever heard of the "short-term fix"? And do you think a few too many short-term fixes is what got us here in the first place?

4. To reiterate Pamela's comment above, we've got some solutions. The problem is that THERE ARE NO EASY SOLUTIONS. This is something that takes time, that takes a 20 Point Plan, that requires all-hands on deck, community policing, after-school programs, mental health services, job training, health care, case management, some accountability mechanisms (but no, not more incarceration), some economic development, some housing support, and much, much more. Not quite as pithy as Reid/de la Fuente giving their two sentence answers (more cops! more tools!), but at some point we need honest answers. Oppression in the United States has been a 500 year process. It will take a few years to unwind all of that.

4 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by MichaelSiegel on 09/07/2011 at 4:23 PM

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