SFW Letters

Regarding the recruiting, they must have discovered early on that Raeshel did absolutely no advertising for employment in San Jose, or anywhere else for that matter. Regarding the targeting of San Jose business travelers, it must have become evident early on that this was not the case because there was no advertising down there, as your reporter even stated in the article.

They wanted to continue the investigation at this point for political and promotional reasons for the SJPD, so they continued stating their "targeting and recruiting" theories to superiors and the DA in order to continue funding.

They still spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of San Jose taxpayer money on investigating and prosecuting these defendants, when in fact even Gillingham has stated, "We [the DAs] could not find direct evidence that Ms. Keavy actually ever did target San Jose or recruit employees down here." I think we should give Gillingham a lot of credit for being so honest when apparently the SJPD was not capable of the same professional ethics. I don't live in San Jose, but given the facts, I'm sure all that money could have been better spent on criminal activity in their own city. I also think it's terrible that your reporter was misled, along with the DA.

Names Withheld
Via Internet

Any Reason You Can't Ship It Up Here?
Fantastically funny article on the Low Country Boil dinner with Jessica and Mark (The Man Who Came to Dinner, Feb. 3). I'm actually a friend of Jessica's, and was very happy to see her and Mark's wonderful charm and humor come through. I would like to make Dinner Man some south Indian vegetarian food -- but unfortunately I live in Southern California. You have an open invite anytime! Thanks for the good Sunday night laugh before the horrendous work week!

Yamini Prabhakar
Via Internet

Rein In Live-Works
While I tend to agree with George Cothran's argument ("Community Infestment," Jan. 27) that live-work spaces are of questionable benefit to their neighborhoods, I don't think the issues are quite as black and white as he depicts.

The stark truth is that living in San Francisco is damn expensive, no matter whether you are renting or trying to buy. And suggesting that poor people are being driven from the city in great numbers by live-work spaces is doubtful. Mostly they are being driven away by the high rents and the fact that minimum wage is not a living wage.

While Cothran painted a bleak picture, he missed a good opportunity to come back with some suggestions for improving the situation. Certainly the 85 percent of loft owners who do not even bother getting business licenses, much less actually work at home, is a good first target. If the ordinance that allows lofts does not have any teeth for enforcement, then people ought to scream about that rather than about loft owners.

And even more than the current owners, the developers should be reined in. They should not be allowed to tear down small businesses that support actual employees, and replace them with live-work spaces that will not.

Lastly, I think that ordinances that govern things like noise pollution should contain language that varies the threshold levels for residential and light-industrial areas. And developers and loft owners should be required to sign a release that they acknowledge the area they are developing/inhabiting is an industrial area which has less strict regulations.

Obviously, I'm not a lawyer, and my suggestions are probably impossible to enact. But, unlike Cothran, I'm actually trying to point out a direction for people to aim the anger he stirred up -- and maybe the wise folks on our Board of Supervisors are listening?

By the way, I'm thrilled to say that my boyfriend and I recently became owners of a 95-year-old Bernal Heights home after countless years in the rental race. I'm sure that somehow negates my opinion on the subject.

Tom Baker
Via Internet

Not a Pretty Mental Picture
And I thought investigative journalism was dead. Many thanks for your article on the two demagogues of San Francisco, Willie Brown Jr. and Joe O'Donoghue ("Developing Friendship," Cothran, Feb. 3). While destroying citizens' civil and property rights, these two ruled illegally and were rewarded regally. One thing I am sure of, Mr. Brown and Mr. O'Donoghue are so crooked that when they die, they'll have to corkscrew them into the ground to bury them. Keep up the scrutiny.

Gregory James
Forest Hill

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