Tag Archives: mayor’s race

Record Low Voter Turnout, but Chron, SFBG and Bay Citizen Report Right-Wing Shift

Evidence of the claims I have been making that the Bay-Guardian, The Chron and The Bay Citizen are not only out of touch, but the worst sort of insider-journalists can be found in their ratification of the results of Tuesday’s election over the reality: only a handful of people decided the political fate of the City.

By contrast, in the blogosphere, The League of Pissed off Voters (via tweet), SF Appeal, and SFist all noted the pathetic voter turnout in Tuesday’s election – which is the story of the election of 2011.

Chris Roberts at SFAppeal notes: “In other words, 112,275 voters — or less than 25 percent of the electorate — decided who became mayor of San Francisco. And of them, 68,721 — or about 14 percent of the electorate, and about eight percent of the citizenry — actually voted for Mayor Ed Lee.”

The absence of coverage of this single most important issue of the election by The Chronicle, The SF Bay Guardian and the newly minted Bay Citizen are exactly what I have been talking about this year. The reporters and editors of these papers are participating in a cliquish civic theater instead of reporting on the needs, thoughts and desires of residents of our City.

They are engaged in stroking a few candidates and ridiculing anyone who thinks outside the box. They lack courage, conviction and objectivity and cover elections so they can be near the winners and get invited to the  party.

The Chron and Bay Citizen and SFBG not only avoided discussing the absurdly low numbers of voters who decided matters, they are even now proceeding to define them as an aggregate image of the “voters of San Francisco” and to attribute this ridiculously small number of citizens in our town with the general opinion of San Franciscans.

In the Bay Guardian, Steven T. Jones spends a long column discussing the makeup of “SF voters” – with no mention of the fact that they were not even a third of those eligible to vote! He dares to title the piece San Francisco’s Political Spectrum: a primer – What balls!

The Bay Citizen, however, is the worst and with the furthest reach. The Bay Citizen made an arrangement whereby select pieces appear in print in the New York Times’ Bay Area editions. So readers of the NYT here in the Bay thus becomes informed by a blog started less than a year ago with $5million from the Hellmans (hover over the link to the bay citizen at right).

And the Hellman family’s editors chose to publish a piece by two of their writers that claim that this election “Signals Shift to the Right” in San Francisco! With no mention of the lowest turnout ever! Again, what balls!

These aren’t journalists, they’re mediators.

This was a horrible election because wealthy vested interests manipulated millions of dollars to ensure a handful of viable choices would appear to wrestle for power, while Ed Lee was basically ratified in a confirmation election.

The Chron and The Bay Citizen and The SF Bay Guardian show their true colors even as the Occupy Movement tells the real story of the disenfranchised.

Blame the media – do it. We’d never have such pathetic candidates if instead of gravy-training reporters at the Chron, SFBG and Bay Citizen, we had real reporters and caring journalists.


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A Fake Election to Confirm Ed Lee as First Elected Chinese Mayor

Recent traffic to this site as the election cycle comes to a close inspires me to write a brief entry for new visitors to this campaign.

I ran for Mayor from November 18, 2010 until July 3rd, 2011, when it became clear that Interim Mayor Ed Lee would be allowed to run for Mayor in this election.

This was my concluding statement and will direct you to a chronology of the campaign.

I believe it is illegal for Ed Lee to run in this election, having promised not to run in order to be appointed to succeed Gavin Newsom, and because it has given Interim Mayor Lee’s campaign tremendous advantages of pseudo-incumbency. He has gained traction illegally throughout. In fact, despotic interests of the past thirty years have joined together – in fear of Instant Runoff Voting – to ensure the “safe” choice for them, a person they can move easily, will become Mayor.

For Rose Pak and the Chinese community it represents that the first Chinese Mayor, our current Interim Mayor, is never seen in the future as having failed at the job. If anything, this election, with Ed Lee allowed to run, represents a confirmation election. It’s a fake election to confirm that we all like Ed Lee. But it isn’t good democracy. It’s factions finding each other.

Leaving Ed Lee out of your three choices for Mayor is the only real way to ensure an ethical result from the succession process, and ensure a democratic outcome. Please do not include Interim Mayor Lee among your three choices for Mayor.

I am not endorsing any candidate for Mayor because I feel strongly that I am a better choice for Mayor than any of them. My policy ideas (Campaign Promises) are unique, and the best for our City right now. I am truly sorry my name is not on the ballot.

I encourage and welcome the use of write-in to include my name in the final tally.

Thanks to all of you who were so supportive.

In solidarity,

Karthik Rajan

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Instant Runoff Voting is Better Democracy

IRV is an excellent tool because

1. it makes candidates seek alliance and coalition-building tactics

2. it makes voters learn more about more candidates and take greater responsibility for their vote.

3. it aids candidates interested in civic leadership but without finances by giving them a means to recognition

4. it eliminates the need for expensive runoff campaigns

5. the process reveals which candidate works best with others at large.

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