November 02, 2008

San Francisco General Election 2008

This ballot is absurd--6 individual representatives, another group for two school boards, 12 state initiatives, and 22 city ones; some number of each of those came from the legislators (aka supervisors in the city, or the mayor there) and some from the people.

Here's my half hearted attempt to figure them out. I'll probably vote tomorrow (one day early) or on Tuesday (voting day).

Here are some useful guides:
The Kate Slate - by someone who's put a lot of effort into it
The League of Young Voters Guide - a little off handed and under informed, but somewhat useful
League of Women Voters guide - a succinct version of the official guide (does't make recommendations)
ACLU recs on a few propositions.

My likely votes are in the full entry.

In order of the ballot:
President: Obama - He's one of the best listeners I've ever seen, he's run an excellent campaign, and he may be either one of our best presidents, or have all the failures that Clinton had or worse.
Representative: Probably crazy Sheehan, though I should look at Berg and Walsh. Pelosi said we should hold her accountable for all her votes, so I can't vote for her.
State Senator: Leno; apparently well respected.
State Assembly: Ammiano; apparently well respected.
Judge: I have no idea; apparenlty this is a runoff.
School and community college board: I have no idea.
BART: Radulovich; apparently well respected.
1A: Rail. Maybe; not sure if this is the best use of state money.
2: Farming rules. No, though not a strong no; let the legislature legislate or the market decide.
3: Hospital bonds: No
4: Parental Notification: No
5: Incarcerate fewer people: Yes
6: Incarcerate more people: No
7: "Green" energy: No
8: Define marriage: No
9: Incarcerate more people: No
10: "Green" energy: No
11: Redistricting: Yes, even if it's not a good solution.
12: Bonds for vets: Sadly no--iflating the bubble further?
A: Hospital bonds: Yes
B: Housing set-aside: No
C: Restrict city employees from some things: No
D: Pier 70: Yes; everyone supports it... though that is itself suspicious!
E: City Recall=State Recall: Yes?
F: Elections in even years: No
G: City employees purchase retirement: No
H: Municipal energy: No; good idea but it has 'set aside' type targets and other problems.
I: More energy bureaucracy: No
J: More preservation bureaucracy: No
K: Decriminalize prostitution: Probably no, ties too many things together.
L: Funding stuff: No; let the legislature legislate
M: Restrict landlords: No
N: Transfer tax wackyness: Not sure; it doubles the tax on expensive property, lowers it for people doing certain retrofitting, and turns certain ownership interest transfers into real estate transfers. I don't know if this is really closing a loophole, or just raising taxes.
O: Telephone Fee nonsense: Yeah, hopefully useful.
P: Remove transport oversight: No.
R: A joke. Literally. No.
S: Sort of stop set-asides: Yes, on principal--though maybe not a good idea?
T: Set-aside for drug treatment. No, let the legislature legislate.
U: Nonsense statement: No
V: Nonsense statement: No

Posted by MBlain at November 2, 2008 11:30 AM

Holy Cow that's nuts. We, in typical Arlington VA fashion, have a pretty straight forward ballot:

Pres: Obama. If not for everything you said, because do you really want Palin (since we know what will probably happen) appointing 3 SC Justices?

Senator: Warner (Hmmm. Maybe Warner in 2016?)

Congress: Moran (another term)

School board (pick 2 of 2): um.... ok, I want both.

County board: Incumbent with everyone's support.

Bonds 1-5: Yes. We have a A/A/Aaa rating, why not use it!

Posted by: Kevan Emmott at November 2, 2008 07:03 PM

Yeah, the CA 'stick it all on the ballot' thing makes a mockery of representative democracy. Many of those SF measures were stuck there either by the Mayor or the Supervisors because they couldn't work something out.

BTW for people in SF, someone referred me to this good list:

Posted by: Matthew Blain at November 3, 2008 09:28 PM

Ha! And I thought that WA/King-County ballot was nuts... but you guys win.

My main picks at
(Obama, Gregoire, Burner)

One of the more interesting proposition was to allow terminally ill to end their lives. I voted yes. If someone's terminally ill with 6 or less months to live... just let them do what they want, damn it.

Posted by: Miladin at November 4, 2008 04:44 PM
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