By Kate Conger
By Brian Rinker
By Rachel Swan
By Anna Pulley
By Erin Sherbert
By Chris Roberts
By Erin Sherbert
By Rachel Swan
Big Bucks on the Line
I read the article entitled "Bag It, Larry" (Bay View, Dec. 24) with great interest. As evidenced by the title, your writer, David Pasztor, seems more interested in attacking me and my profession (commercial real estate) than investigating the over $50 million being flushed down the toilet by the Department of Defense and the National Park Service. His article is riddled with inaccuracies and is so obviously biased that, frankly, I'm embarrassed for him.
First off, Mr. Pasztor states that Andronico's themselves are "lukewarm" about the proposal. This is completely false. And frankly, even if Andronico's was "lukewarm," as Mr. Pasztor states, could you blame them? It has been nearly three years since we submitted the proposal and still no answer. A transaction of this sort takes a month or two in the real world.
Your subtitle, "No one seems to want a grocery store ...," is in itself a falsehood. Mr. Pasztor interviews the biggest (and only) opponents to the proposal, Michael Alexander and Amy Meyer, and suddenly no one seems to want a grocery store.
Wake up, San Francisco! These are the people running the show! These are the people who, through continued non-action and knee-jerk negative responses to anything remotely commercial in the Presidio, will drive the Presidio to the auction block.
Michael Alexander, Amy Meyer, and I agree on one thing. We all want to see fewer buildings and more open space on the Presidio. The intelligent approach to accomplishing this common goal is to lease the big revenue-earners like Letterman, the Commissary, and a few others, and tear down most everything else that lacks historical significance. In fact, my approach to managing the Presidio would result in more open space than Michael Alexander's and Amy Meyer's approach.
The idea of tearing down the few commercially leasable properties left on the Presidio is quite myopic. Reactionaries like Mr. Alexander and Ms. Meyer have no solutions of their own that I'm aware of. How much revenue have they brought to the Presidio? I've brought the Park Service an offer of $28 million to lease one building. What have they done to make the Presidio self-sufficient?
The Commissary building was constructed in 1991 with taxpayer dollars at a cost of over $15 million, but the Department of Defense vacated the Presidio just after it was completed. Who is responsible for that? Instead of spending another few million dollars to tear down this brand-new building, a tenant comes along and offers $28 million to lease it in as is condition. What a break!
Unfortunately, the newly established Presidio Trust is incapable of responding intelligently to the offer. Who is responsible for that? Unearthing answers to these questions would take a lot of effort and some investigative skills. Does anyone at SF Weekly possess these skills?
It's a shame to see a great package like Deck just pissed on by corporate marketing weasels ("Death of a Multimedia Phenomenon," Dec. 24). Why does a greedy company like Macromedia buy a Deck in the first place, then just kill it? We need more companies like OSC that have vision and care about what they produce, and where the friggin' almighty dollar is less important than the product.
Unfortunately, as long as greedmongers like Microsoft, Macromedia, and Intel exist to chew up and spit out anything that threatens their markets, the small, creative company hasn't got a chance. The computer industry and society as a whole suffers. Money is the root of all evil.
Yellow Snow: A Cross-Cultural Perspective
I am not a writer. But reading an article named "Tibetmania!" in SF Weekly (Music, Dec. 17), I felt I had a responsibility to write a short letter. First of all, I would like to thank Mr. Jeff Stark for being concerned about the Tibet issue. However, unwillingly, I must say that the article was solid Chinese propaganda, and I found it ungrounded in reality.
When I saw the headline "Tibetmania!" I was happy! When I read the whole story, I lost my excitement, and, in fact, it gave me the thought of being back under the Chinese authority again, and naturally frightened me. When I came to America in 1996, I knew I had escaped from the demoralization of Chinese authority and their false teaching of Tibetan history. But reading the article made me feel that the Chinese propaganda has followed me even into this country!
In the article, Mr. Stark used an entry from the People's Almanac. I saw that article in the People's Almanac, too. It is a three-paragraph article in the 1975 edition. If he looked in the People's Almanac of 1978, only three years later, it has changed about the Tibetan issue. If he looked in the People's Almanac editions from the 1980s and '90s, they treat Tibetan history far differently than the one he has read.
The knowledge I learned from my elder countrypeople, the knowledge that was illegal to teach and learn, gave me enough evidence to be able to say this article of three paragraphs is wrong. "90 percent of Tibetans were serfs and another 5 percent were slaves. All the land was owned by about 3 percent of the population." This entry is inaccurate for our history.