When you’re inside a private suburban home with a gourmet kitchen, a formal dining room, five bedrooms, four baths, a bonus room above the three car garage, a backyard swimming pool… it’s pretty sweet. And when you climb into your car and hit the road at sixty miles an hour the freedom of mobility feels … Continue reading Downward Mobility
I’m ambivalent about big box stores. I occasionally shop at places like Walmart, Costco, and Target just like most people. I buy various packaged goods in bulk from these mega retailers to take advantage of a volume discount. I don’t moralize over these things. But when it comes to meat, dairy, and fresh produce I … Continue reading Big Box Urbanism
I want you to take a long hard look at these photos. Where do you think they were taken? A refugee camp in Syria? The county animal control facility? A public housing project? A minimum security prison? Camp X-Ray in Guantanamo? Google This is actually the premier high-end public high school in Quartz Hill, … Continue reading Why Do We Do This?
I was recently asked by a neighbor to write a blog post about greed in the super heated economic bubble here in San Francisco. I told her I think the problems that vex her are more complicated than pure greed, but I’d give it a shot. Keep in mind, where a person stands on any … Continue reading Inside the Bubble
Two nights ago I attended a presentation at Mission Dolores Church sponsored by the San Francisco Chronicle called “A Changing Mission”. The discussion was based on a newspaper article and associated short film about the neighborhood. It’s well worth a quick look here. Next week I’ll be in Lancaster, California to attend a similar … Continue reading Two Sides of the Same Coin: Decline and Gentrification
After the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 I really wanted to see history unfold for myself. I was young and adventurous so the next summer I wandered around the failing Soviet Union. I had a duffle bag full of Levi’s which I exchanged for accommodations with families from Leningrad to Moscow. A little hard currency … Continue reading Authoritarian Planning Regimes