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Housing plan targeting Bay Area

Housing plan targeting Bay Area

From By Austin Walsh Daily Journal staff at www.smdailyjournal.com - RSS Results in news/local of type article
A new regional plan could mandate the Bay Area to build 441,000 new housing units — a sizable portion of which are assigned near the Peninsula’s job centers, raising the eyebrows of local officials.The Association of Bay Area Governments will consider Thursday, Oct. 15, a Regional Housing Needs Allocation methodology aiming to determine where new homes should be constructed over the next eight years. The proposed calculation effectively triples the county’s previous allocation from about 16,000 units to 48,000 units.
Noting that housing development has lagged significantly behind the region’s economic growth, a spokesman for the regional organization said the new housing numbers are a product of an effort to make the Bay Area a more affordable, desirable and equitable place to live.“The Bay Area has not built housing to keep up with these increased employment numbers. In real life this has meant high housing costs. Both ownership and rental,” said Randy Rentschler, a spokesman for ABAG, in an email. “With respect to this RHNA cycle and recent changes in state law, the housing allocations numbers from [California Department of Housing and Community Development] are, in part, a reflection of that.”The state housing department ultimately requires the housing to be constructed, and the regional board breaks down allocations for communities throughout the Bay Area. The ABAG board is comprised of officials representing jurisdictions throughout the Bay Area and its San Mateo County representatives are county supervisors David Canepa and Dave Pine, South San Francisco Mayor Rich Garbarino and Millbrae Councilman Wayne Lee.

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Two kinds of momentum

Two kinds of momentum

From Seth Godin at Seth's Blog
When we’re not committed yet, the cost of looking around and switching our choice is small. But once we’ve emotionally committed to a cause or a project or a person, the cost of change is high, partly because it involves feeling as though we made a mistake.
But compounding that initial choice by doubling down on it is the actual mistake. Digging a deeper hole rarely gets us to the other side.

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The End of the Islamic Republic of Iran?

The End of the Islamic Republic of Iran?

From Shay Khatiri at Quillette
The Islamic Republic has been the source of much evil in the Middle East. But for the first time in its history, it finds itself opposed by a coalition of the United States, Israel, the Arab countries, and its own people. By supporting democratic actors and anti-regime elements, this alliance can force the Islamic Republic to direct its resources to domestic security and in effect self-contain, while the bloc of anti-regime states provides external containment. Beset by internal unrest and economic strife, overextended in its costly foreign entanglements, and facing unprecedented unity from its external foes, the Islamic Republic has never looked more vulnerable. An end to the Revolutionary theocracy and the misery it has inflicted on its own people and the region since 1979 may finally be in sight.
The good news is that the desire to see the back of the Islamic regime has never been stronger inside Iran, and outside it, Arab states are aligning co-operatively with Israel against the regional Iranian threat. Before the pandemic, protests were more common in Iran than ever, and the regime’s mishandling of the COVID-19 crisis has made it even more unpopular. An IRGC intelligence officer who defected reports that the regime’s popularity is in single digits among Iranians, which—if true—points to a complete collapse in its popular legitimacy even among its traditional base. Demographics are working against the regime, as well. Declining birth rates indicate a concomitant decline in religion, which is bad news for a theocracy.

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Is China the Governance of the Future?

Is China the Governance of the Future?

From John Lloyd at Quillette
This cannot all be put at the door of Trump. In his forthcoming book The Upswing, the Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam argues that Americans have lurched too far from “earlier communitarian values” in favour of individualism. He quotes the philosopher Danielle Allen: We think we are required to choose between freedom and equality. Our choice in recent years has tipped towards freedom. Under the general influence of libertarianism, both parties have abandoned our Declaration; they have scorned our patrimony. Such a choice is dangerous. If we abandon equality, we lose the single bond that makes us a community, that makes us a people with the capacity to be free collectively and individually in the first place.
Taiwan, the democratic breakaway from China, is now under growing pressure, as Chinese military jets routinely overfly its airspace. “China is completely open about the threat. President Xi Jinping framed it himself in a high-profile speech in 2019: ‘We do not promise to renounce the use of force and reserve the option to use all necessary measures.’” If it succeeds in taking the lead from the West in the coming decades, the Chinese Communist Party will rise to global power as a tyranny with no recognition of human rights or toleration for a civil society independent of Party and state. Its success would be a turn not towards efficiency, but to a particular kind of high-tech barbarism, in which dissent is routinely silenced and ethnic and religious differences ironed out. To ignore it—worse, to succumb to it in the name of efficiency—would be to destroy democratic civilisation

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Dr. Fauci: Earliest We’ll Be “Back to Normal” Is the End of 2021

Dr. Fauci: Earliest We’ll Be “Back to Normal” Is the End of 2021

Vaccines are in production and will be available next year
From Jason Kottke at kottke.org
With a very effective vaccine ready in Nov/Dec, distributed widely, and if lots of people take it (i.e. the best case scenario), the earliest we could return to “normal life” in the world is the end of 2021.
Leaving aside what “normal” might mean and who it actually applies to,1 there’s some good news and bad news in there. The good news is, they’re already producing doses of the vaccine to be ready if and when the phase 3 trials are successful. Ramping up production before the trials conclude isn’t usually done because it’s a waste of money if the trials fail, but these vaccines are so critical to saving lives that they’re spending that money to save time. That’s great news.

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Business Books and Podcasts

Business Books and Podcasts

From Fred Wilson at AVC
But there are some great concepts that one can glean from business books and I’ve often wanted to find an efficient way to do that without buying the book and reading one chapter. Podcasts to the rescue. Most business book writers go on a podcast tour in order to promote their book. All you need to do is find your favorite interviewer on the podcast tour and listen to that one. That’s generally thirty to forty-five minutes and you will get everything you need from the book and maybe more.
But there are some great concepts that one can glean from business books and I’ve often wanted to find an efficient way to do that without buying the book and reading one chapter. Podcasts to the rescue. Most business book writers go on a podcast tour in order to promote their book. All you need to do is find your favorite interviewer on the podcast tour and listen to that one. That’s generally thirty to forty-five minutes and you will get everything you need from the book and maybe more.

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Fell on Black Days

Fell on Black Days

From Ben Hunt at Epsilon Theory
He said that the song is about waking up one morning and realizing with a start that your life and the world in general are … off. Not just a little off, but way, way waaaay off. And not because of some huge traumatic event. Not because you got really sick or you got fired or a meteor hit the Earth, but because of a thousand little events, each regrettable and yet oddly unremarkable in itself, each building on the others, each lost in the noise of the others, each noted with a sigh and then promptly forgotten. It’s the realization that you are the frog now sitting in boiling water, that you are the one suffering a death by a thousand cuts. It’s the realization that you’re not as happy as you used to be, that you’re not as secure as you used to be, that you’re not as healthy as you used to be. And it all just … happened. It all just snuck up on you unawares, like you were asleep or something.
We need quantum change – meaning we must have change in the rules of the system, meaning that we must have change in the state of the system – because once you fall into the stable equilibrium of our Black Days, it is impossible for incremental change or adjustment to get you out. Not just difficult. Impossible. That’s what an equilibrium means. We cannot just open a door that has been welded shut. We must blow the door open.

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The President Is a White Supremacist. And So Are You if You Support Him.

The President Is a White Supremacist. And So Are You if You Support Him.

From Jason Kottke at kottke.org
Last night in a debate with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, Donald Trump, the actual President of these United States, not only declined to condemn white supremacy, he gave an order to an openly white supremacist group on national television.
I understand the perfect candidate doesn’t exist and that our system of voting requires us to compromise some of our values in order to support progress towards bigger goals, but good luck explaining that you voted for an actual white supremacist to your grandchildren someday (if you can stomach telling them the truth). Some values cannot be compromised.

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Measure RR seeks to save, grow Caltrain in San Mateo, San Francisco and Santa Clara counties

Measure RR seeks to save, grow Caltrain in San Mateo, San Francisco and Santa Clara counties

From By Zachary Clark Daily Journal staff at www.smdailyjournal.com - RSS Results in news/local of type article
Without Caltrain, residents can expect traffic congestion to be worse than it was before the pandemic, proponents of the measure argue.“Voting yes on RR will remove thousands of cars from our highways every day,” reads the official ballot argument against the measure. “Without Caltrain, traffic congestion will soon be worse than before COVID-19.”
Without Caltrain, residents can expect traffic congestion to be worse than it was before the pandemic, proponents of the measure argue.“Voting yes on RR will remove thousands of cars from our highways every day,” reads the official ballot argument against the measure. “Without Caltrain, traffic congestion will soon be worse than before COVID-19.”

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State: Nantucket schools can't resume in-class learning for all students Oct. 1

State: Nantucket schools can't resume in-class learning for all students Oct. 1

From at "nantucket covid" - Google News
Most Nantucket public-school students will continue remote learning until at least Oct. 19, after the state education commissioner determined the island’s coronavirus numbers are too high for a return to class this Thursday, schools superintendent Beth Hallett said Tuesday night.
Half of the twice-a-week students will be allowed to return to school Oct. 19 and the other half Oct. 22, as long as Nantucket has fallen from a red coronavirus designation to yellow or lower, Hallett said. Red districts indicate communities with an average daily coronavirus positivity rate of eight or more cases per 100,000 people over a two-week period.

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The Unsettling Normalcy of Societal Collapse

The Unsettling Normalcy of Societal Collapse

From Jason Kottke at kottke.org
If you’re trying to carry on while people around you die, your society is not collapsing. It’s already fallen down.
If you’re trying to carry on while people around you die, your society is not collapsing. It’s already fallen down.

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Schools prep for reopening in San Mateo County

Schools prep for reopening in San Mateo County

From By Austin Walsh Daily Journal staff at www.smdailyjournal.com - RSS Results in news/local of type article
Three public schools districts — Hillsborough City, Menlo Park and Las Lomitas — all recently received waivers from education and health agencies to begin in-person learning. The school systems join 27 private schools and one public school, Connect Community Charter in Redwood City, among those with waiver approvals.
Three public schools districts — Hillsborough City, Menlo Park and Las Lomitas — all recently received waivers from education and health agencies to begin in-person learning. The school systems join 27 private schools and one public school, Connect Community Charter in Redwood City, among those with waiver approvals.

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Wildfires Return to Areas of Wine Country Burned in 2017; Evacuation Orders Hit Santa Rosa, Kenwood, Glen Ellen

Wildfires Return to Areas of Wine Country Burned in 2017; Evacuation Orders Hit Santa Rosa, Kenwood, Glen Ellen

From Jay Barmann at SFist - San Francisco News, Restaurants, Events, & Sports
Parts of Santa Rosa that either burned or were in view of the burning three years ago were under mandatory evacuation orders Sunday night as more fast-moving fire spread into Sonoma County from Napa earlier in the evening. And more homes in Santa Rosa were burning once again.
Fire was also once again threatening the area of Paradise in Butte County, and meteorologist Daniel Swain reported on the painful coincidence that the areas of both the 2017 Tubbs Fire and the 2018 Camp Fire were under evacuation orders once again.This is extremely hard to say, but within past hour Butte County & Sonoma County officials have both issued nighttime emergency evacuation orders for some of the same areas previous burned by the Tubbs Fire in 2017 & Camp Fire in 2018. Please be vigilant tonight. #CAwx #CAfire

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Drop in San Francisco Rents Has Accelerated

Drop in San Francisco Rents Has Accelerated

From SocketSite at SocketSite™
Having slipped under $3,600 in August, the weighted average asking rent for an apartment in San Francisco has just dropped to under $3,400 a month, which is down nearly 6 percent over the past month, down over 20 percent on a year-over-year basis and nearly 25 percent below a 2015-era peak, driven by a sharp increase in vacancy rates (which had briefly waned earlier this month but has since started ticking back up).
Having slipped under $3,600 in August, the weighted average asking rent for an apartment in San Francisco has just dropped to under $3,400 a month, which is down nearly 6 percent over the past month, down over 20 percent on a year-over-year basis and nearly 25 percent below a 2015-era peak, driven by a sharp increase in vacancy rates (which had briefly waned earlier this month but has since started ticking back up).

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One killed, two injured by large branch falling in Washington Park

One killed, two injured by large branch falling in Washington Park

From Bay City News Service at www.smdailyjournal.com - RSS Results in news/local of type article
One person was killed and two others seriously injured Saturday when a large tree limb broke off from a tree in Washington Park in Burlingame, according to a message posted on the Burlingame City Hall Facebook page.The person killed, a San Mateo resident, was hit by the 60-foot tree limb while picnicking at the park, off of Burlingame and Carolan Avenues east of downtown.
One person was killed and two others seriously injured Saturday when a large tree limb broke off from a tree in Washington Park in Burlingame, according to a message posted on the Burlingame City Hall Facebook page.The person killed, a San Mateo resident, was hit by the 60-foot tree limb while picnicking at the park, off of Burlingame and Carolan Avenues east of downtown.

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Glass Fire Merges With Sonoma Fire, Burns 11,000 Acres and Prompts Mass Evacuation

Glass Fire Merges With Sonoma Fire, Burns 11,000 Acres and Prompts Mass Evacuation

From Jay Barmann at SFist - San Francisco News, Restaurants, Events, & Sports
The Glass Fire grew at least fourfold overnight as it merged with two other fires that it may have sparked — the Shady Fire and the Boysen Fire — and gusty offshore winds continue to help it grow to the south and west.
The Glass Fire began around 4 a.m. Sunday in an area east of Highway 29 and north of St. Helena. Evacuations proceeded throughout the day in Napa County, and evacuation orders for areas of Sonoma County did not arrive until evening on Sunday as the two spot fires south and west of the Glass Fire began growing rapidly and tearing over the ridge between the counties. The combined fires have burned 11,000 acres as of Monday morning

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Universal Access and Choice

Universal Access and Choice

From Fred Wilson at AVC
Often society’s answer to providing universal access is to grant a monopoly. Look at cable services in the US. We granted local franchise monopolies in return for a commitment to build out the market and serve everyone. Look at our K12 system in the US. Everyone can go to school for free but you have to go to the school in your town, even if it’s much worse than the school in the next town. Look at Medicare in the US. Everyone over 65 can get Medicare. But everyone gets the same coverage even if they have vastly different medical needs.
These efforts are all great successes. They have provided needed services to the vast majority of society. But they are monopolies. To see them any other way is wrong

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Why Am I Reading This Now?

Why Am I Reading This Now?

From Ben Hunt at Epsilon Theory
But if you’re still a human being … if you’re still able to hold two independent thoughts in your head at the same time … if you’re still able to believe that yes, China’s treatment of the Uyghurs is a grotesque evil deserving of implacable sanction and resistance AND yes, The Three Body Problem is an important work of art … then my answer is no.
But I don’t think that the five GOP Senators who sent this letter to Netflix are well-meaning.I don’t think these Senators care very much about this book adaptation and the indirect-at-best “normalization” of abhorrent political views held by the author of the source material. I don’t think that this letter was written out of a deep and abiding concern with the horrific treatment of the Uyghurs, because if that were true a letter to Mary Barra at General Motors might be just a wee bit more relevant and impactful.

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A Vitamin D Bet

A Vitamin D Bet

From Alex Tabarrok at Marginal Revolution
Indeed, an Israeli company, RootClaim, which combines crowdfunding of data with Bayesian algorithms to improve decision making (yeah, some reasons for skepticism here) has offered to bet anyone $100,000 (I think at 1:1 odds) that Vitamin D works against COVID. The precise bet is as follows: Rootclaim is willing to bet $100,000 that vitamin D is effective in reducing the severity of Covid-19.
Indeed, an Israeli company, RootClaim, which combines crowdfunding of data with Bayesian algorithms to improve decision making (yeah, some reasons for skepticism here) has offered to bet anyone $100,000 (I think at 1:1 odds) that Vitamin D works against COVID. The precise bet is as follows: Rootclaim is willing to bet $100,000 that vitamin D is effective in reducing the severity of Covid-19.

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United Airlines to offer Covid-19 tests for passengers flying from San Francisco to Hawaii

United Airlines to offer Covid-19 tests for passengers flying from San Francisco to Hawaii

From By Ben Miller  – Staff Reporter, Sep 24, 2020, 7:21am PDT Updated 12 hours ago at San Francisco Business Times

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Three Major Bay Wildfires Now At or Near Full Containment, Five and a Half Weeks Later

Three Major Bay Wildfires Now At or Near Full Containment, Five and a Half Weeks Later

From Jay Barmann at SFist - San Francisco News, Restaurants, Events, & Sports
The destructive CZU Lightning Complex fire in Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties was declared fully, 100-percent contained on Wednesday, five and a half weeks after it was sparked and 86,000 scorched acres later. The larger SCU and LNU complexes to the east and north are both 98-percent contained, and will hopefully be fully contained before some possible winds kick up this weekend.
Similarly high winds are due to hit Northern California this Saturday, September 26, which could spell disaster in any number of areas where fires are still burning or smoldering, including within the perimeter of the August Complex Fire to the north. That fire, now the largest in state history at 860,000 acres, is only 39-percent contained as of Wednesday, and spans four counties (Mendocino, Humboldt, Del Norte, and Trinity). It's burning in very remote, undeveloped terrain, and therefore despite its size it has only destroyed 51 structures to date.

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County moves out of most restrictive tier

County moves out of most restrictive tier

From Daily Journal staff report at www.smdailyjournal.com - RSS Results in news/local of type article
After remaining in the purple tier for three weeks, the county maintained having fewer than seven new daily cases per 100,000 residents and maintained a positive test rate below 8% for two weeks. Currently, the county has 6.8 new cases for every 100,000 residents and a positivity rate of 4.5%, according to the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy COVID-19 dashboard.
After remaining in the purple tier for three weeks, the county maintained having fewer than seven new daily cases per 100,000 residents and maintained a positive test rate below 8% for two weeks. Currently, the county has 6.8 new cases for every 100,000 residents and a positivity rate of 4.5%, according to the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy COVID-19 dashboard.

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Now go do the same with all the cops that have links to white supremacist organizations #DefundThePolice https://t.co/H16heGajUf

Now go do the same with all the cops that have links to white supremacist organizations #DefundThePolice https://t.co/H16heGajUf

A simple background check would have helped...
From Chicago DSA 🌹 (@ChicagoCityDSA) at ("police violence" OR "defundthepolice" ) min_faves:10 lang:en min_replies:2 min_retweets:2 Twitter Alert with Links
Prosecutors say Angwang falsely obtained U.S. citizenship by claiming asylum, stating that he had been arrested and tortured in China due partly to his Tibetan ethnicity.“Yet, despite alleging torture and persecution at the hands of PRC security officials, the government’s investigation has revealed that Angwang has traveled back to the PRC on numerous occasion since his asylum application was granted,” the memo says.“These are not the actions of an individual who fears torture or persecution at the hands of the PRC, thus showing that his U.S. citizenship was secured through false pretenses.”
Prosecutors say Angwang falsely obtained U.S. citizenship by claiming asylum, stating that he had been arrested and tortured in China due partly to his Tibetan ethnicity.“Yet, despite alleging torture and persecution at the hands of PRC security officials, the government’s investigation has revealed that Angwang has traveled back to the PRC on numerous occasion since his asylum application was granted,” the memo says.“These are not the actions of an individual who fears torture or persecution at the hands of the PRC, thus showing that his U.S. citizenship was secured through false pretenses.”

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RT @JBallingIM: No new #coronavirus cases reported on #Nantucket Monday: https://t.co/l8OUSemXJc https://t.co/mDSUf8GF2F

RT @JBallingIM: No new #coronavirus cases reported on #Nantucket Monday: https://t.co/l8OUSemXJc https://t.co/mDSUf8GF2F

Is this written by a poorly constructed bot?
From Joshua Balling (@JBallingIM) at @InkyM Tweets
It met again Thursday, but imposed no new orders. 
(Sept. 21, 2020) No new coronavirus cases were reported on Nantucket Monday, and just four since Thursday. There have now been 42 confirmed cases on Nantucket in the last 12 days, with the bulk occurring between Sept. 9-16, and 105 since mid-March.

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Rash of Home Burglaries Rattles North Beach, Other SF Neighborhoods

Rash of Home Burglaries Rattles North Beach, Other SF Neighborhoods

From Jay Barmann at SFist - San Francisco News, Restaurants, Events, & Sports
Burglaries are up nearly 80 percent in the Mission District and nearly 60 percent in the Northern district (North Beach, Marina, Cow Hollow, Pac Heights), according to the San Francisco Police Department, and burglaries are up 42 percent overall, citywide. As KPIX reports, police say they're getting an increasing number of reports of burglaries being committed through garage doors — and North Beach resident Ginny Fang tells the station, "You take a walk down the neighborhood and you see so many holes just punched into garages."
There's also been an ongoing uptick in auto thefts in SF — a trend that has been echoed in other major cities around the U.S. as more people leave cars on the street for days and weeks on end. As of June, auto thefts were up 28 percent in SF compared to the same March-June period last year. Similar dramatic jumps in motor vehicle thefts have been reported in Denver, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Austin.Fang notes that the whole North Beach neighborhood is on edge now with the burglaries, and not enjoying feeling unsafe while they're still mostly stuck at home. "It’s so hard, the destabilizing feeling," she tells KPIX, "and there’s already so much happening in the world and even the basic sanctity of your home."

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How California Became Ground Zero for Climate Disasters

How California Became Ground Zero for Climate Disasters

From Christopher Flavelle at NYT > Science
The same manufactured landscapes that have enabled California’s tremendous growth, building the state into a $3 trillion economy that is home to one in 10 Americans, have also left it more exposed to climate shocks, experts say.
Still, the manufactured systems that support the state’s population and economy have left the state especially vulnerable. The wildfires are only the latest example of how climate change can cause engineered landscapes to go awry. Those blazes are partly the result of hotter temperatures and drier conditions, scientists say, which have made it easier for vegetation to ignite, causing fires to become bigger and more intense.But the intensity of those fires also reflects decades of policy decisions that altered those forests, according to Robert Bonnie, who oversaw the United States Forest Service under President Barack Obama. And the cost of those decisions is now coming due.In an effort to protect homes and encourage new building, governments for decades focused on suppressing fires that occurred naturally, allowing the buildup of vegetation that would provide fuel for future blazes. Even after the drawbacks of that approach became clear, officials remained reluctant to reduce that vegetation through prescribed burns, wary of upsetting residents with smoke or starting a fire that might burn out of control.That approach made California’s forests more comfortable for the estimated 11 million people who now live in and around them. But it has also made them more susceptible to catastrophic fires. “We’ve sort of built up this fire debt,” Mr. Bonnie said. “People are going to have to tolerate smoke and risk.”

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Bay Area Employment Still Down by 400K, Labor Force Dropping

Bay Area Employment Still Down by 400K, Labor Force Dropping

Bay Area unemployment down 400k from a year ago
From SocketSite at SocketSite™
And while net employment increased by 43,400 across the Bay Area last month, total employment (3,683,300) is still down by over 400,000 on a year-over-year basis and the labor force actually dropped by 49,300 last month to 4,029,900, which is now down by 173,300 on a year-over-year basis, for an unemployment rate of 8.6 percent.
And while net employment increased by 43,400 across the Bay Area last month, total employment (3,683,300) is still down by over 400,000 on a year-over-year basis and the labor force actually dropped by 49,300 last month to 4,029,900, which is now down by 173,300 on a year-over-year basis, for an unemployment rate of 8.6 percent.

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Air Quality Will Not Hold As Temperatures Rise With High-Pressure System This Weekend

Air Quality Will Not Hold As Temperatures Rise With High-Pressure System This Weekend

Bay Area air quality expected to decline again by Sunday
From Jay Barmann at SFist - San Francisco News, Restaurants, Events, & Sports
Air quality in San Francisco and the Bay Area is predicted to slide into potentially unhealthy territory by Sunday, as an area of high pressure puts an end to the nice marine breeze we've been having for a couple of days that's pushed wildfire smoke away to the north and east.
Air quality in San Francisco and the Bay Area is predicted to slide into potentially unhealthy territory by Sunday, as an area of high pressure puts an end to the nice marine breeze we've been having for a couple of days that's pushed wildfire smoke away to the north and east.

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Increasingly extreme autumn wildfire conditions in California due to climate change

Increasingly extreme autumn wildfire conditions in California due to climate change

fire problems will worsen in California in coming years due to climate change
From Daniel Swain at Weather West
As it turns out, the short answer is…yes: we found that climate change has already more than doubled the frequency of extreme autumn wildfire conditions in California over the past ~40 years. This finding is based on observed changes in the frequency of occurrence of autumn days exceeding the 95th percentile of the historical Fire Weather Index (FWI). The FWI gives a quantitative estimate of the severity of wildfire risk using a multivariate suite of meteorological data (including temperature, humidity, wind speed, solar radiation, and vegetation “fuel moisture” (which itself incorporates antecedent weather/climate information)). Overall, mean September-November FWI in California increased by about 20% between 1980 and 2018—a trend that was distributed fairly uniformly across the state, including both coastal and interior regions in the north and south. We further found that the occurrence of extreme FWI days was strongly associated with days on which large wildfires occurred—strengthening the link between increasing FWI and the severity of actual fire conditions on the ground.
Much can also be done to improve the resilience of communities as well as individual structures to wildfire hazards. While the oft-promoted notion of “defensible space” is a good place to start, recent evidence suggests that other interventions are even more effective—including fire-resilient building materials and methods. At larger scales, communities can be designed to better resist fire (by incorporating greenbelts or fuel-reduction corridors, for example). Improved evacuation planning and communications infrastructure can make worst-case scenario firestorms less deadly by making it easier to leave affected areas in a safe and timely manner. And there has also been progress toward reducing high-risk wildfire ignitions during extreme wind events—via “Public Safety Power Shut-Offs” by electrical utilities—although such interventions remain highly disruptive, societally inequitable, and probably unsustainable in the long run due to our warming climate.

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Lawler: Early Read on Existing Home Sales in August

Lawler: Early Read on Existing Home Sales in August

From Calculated Risk at Calculated Risk
Local realtor/MLS data suggest that the median US existing single-family home sales price last month was up by a steamy 11.6% from last August, partly boosted by the mix of home sales but mainly boosted by the lack of available inventory across much of the country combined with strong demand for SF detached homes.
Given both the sales and inventory numbers, it’s perhaps not shocking that there has been a rapid acceleration in home prices over the past few months – to the point that one can at least say the single-family housing market has become “frothy,” and perhaps even become a little “bubbly.”

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Home Prices Rose 11% in August—Biggest Gain in Over 6 Years

Home Prices Rose 11% in August—Biggest Gain in Over 6 Years

SF real estate listings up 75%, sales down 13%
From Tim Ellis at Redfin | Real Estate Tips for Home Buying, Selling & More
Only two of the 85 largest metros tracked by Redfin posted a year-over-year increase in the count of seasonally-adjusted active listings of homes for sale: San Francisco (+75%) and New York City (+10%). The sudden expansion of work-from-home policies due to the pandemic has led many people to flee these cities, two of the country’s most expensive housing markets.
San Francisco had the highest increase in the number of homes for sale, up 75% year over year, followed by New York (10%).

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Climate Change Will Force a New American Migration

Climate Change Will Force a New American Migration

Climate change will push populations north
From Abrahm Lustgarten,Meridith Kohut at ProPublica
Once you accept that climate change is fast making large parts of the United States nearly uninhabitable, the future looks like this: With time, the bottom half of the country grows inhospitable, dangerous and hot. Something like a tenth of the people who live in the South and the Southwest — from South Carolina to Alabama to Texas to Southern California — decide to move north in search of a better economy and a more temperate environment. Those who stay behind are disproportionately poor and elderly.
The millions of people moving north will mostly head to the cities of the Northeast and Northwest, which will see their populations grow by roughly 10%, according to one model. Once-chilly places like Minnesota and Michigan and Vermont will become more temperate, verdant and inviting. Vast regions will prosper; just as Hsiang’s research forecast that Southern counties could see a tenth of their economy dry up, he projects that others as far as North Dakota and Minnesota will enjoy a corresponding expansion. Cities like Detroit; Rochester, New York; Buffalo and Milwaukee will see a renaissance, with their excess capacity in infrastructure, water supplies and highways once again put to good use. One day, it’s possible that a high-speed rail line could race across the Dakotas, through Idaho’s up-and-coming wine country and the country’s new breadbasket along the Canadian border, to the megalopolis of Seattle, which by then has nearly merged with Vancouver to its north.

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No interscholastic Nantucket sports this fall - News

No interscholastic Nantucket sports this fall - News

Cape schools don’t want want to take ferry to islands this year
From at "nantucket covid" - Google News
There was also an issue with other Cape & Islands League schools feeling uncomfortable traveling by ferry to schools on Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard. Maury said both Barnstable High School and Nauset High School had an administrative directive that would prevent them from traveling to either island school for sports. 
The earliest that we can potentially get our numbers down low enough to clear the red classification would be the report date of Sept 30,” he said. “If we were to clear the red classification on this date, given the required number of practices needed prior to any game play (14), the earliest that we would be eligible for any game competition would be Saturday, Oct 17.” 

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High schools: Marthas Vineyard, Nantucket go intramural for the fall

High schools: Marthas Vineyard, Nantucket go intramural for the fall

Nantucket schools cancels all fall inter scholastic sports
From at "nantucket covid" - Google News
“Much as I would like to, and have worked to, give our kids an opportunity to get back on the athletic fields for interscholastic play this fall, I do not feel that playing at an interscholastic level is the right decision for our student-athletes and/or that it is fair to all of the other league member schools to ask for Nantucket to remain on any of the 2020 fall game schedules,” Maury said in a statement announced via social media. ”The best decision regarding our NPS fall athletic teams is to pull all of our teams out of any interscholastic play for the 2020 fall season and focus on developing an on-island intramural-based approach for this year's NPS fall athletic teams.”
Nantucket’s decision came following the latest DPH update, which classified Nantucket as a “red” zone, with more than eight reported cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 population over the past two weeks. Schools in red zones can compete only at the intramural level, athletic director Chris Maury said, leading to an intramural Whalers season tentatively scheduled to begin Oct. 1.

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Bay Area Air Quality Clears As Smoky Air Blows Into Nevada and Tahoe

Bay Area Air Quality Clears As Smoky Air Blows Into Nevada and Tahoe

From Jay Barmann at SFist - San Francisco News, Restaurants, Events, & Sports
As of Tuesday, there were reports of the wildfire smoke from Washington, Oregon, and California reaching New York, and as of Wednesday, we can clearly see from air quality maps that the "purple" air has headed off to Lake Tahoe, Nevada and points east, while most of the Bay Area has lovely "blue" or "green" "good" air now.
Bad for Tahoe, where there are currently AQI readings in the 300s and 400s, but good for us.

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CZU Lightning Complex containment reaches 95%

CZU Lightning Complex containment reaches 95%

From at www.smdailyjournal.com - RSS Results in news/local of type article
One civilian has been killed and one other injured in these fires, in which almost 1,500 structures have been destroyed, including 928 residences and 171 commercial structures. An additional 90 residences and 16 commercial structures have been damaged.
The CZU Lightning Complex wildfires, which have burned 86,509 acres across San Mateo and Santa Cruz counties since Aug. 16, were 95% contained as of Wednesday evening, Cal Fire said.

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RT @JBallingIM: Six new #coronavirus cases repoted on #Nantucket Wednesday, raising island total to 101: https://t.co/A49onYq7XC

RT @JBallingIM: Six new #coronavirus cases repoted on #Nantucket Wednesday, raising island total to 101: https://t.co/A49onYq7XC

From Joshua Balling (@JBallingIM) at @InkyM Tweets
Six new cases of coronavirus were reported on Nantucket Tuesday, bringing to 101 the total number of positive tests on the island since mid-March. Thirty-eight new cases have been confirmed on the island since last Wednedsay. No COVID-19 positive patients were hospitalized on Nantucket or in mainland facilities as of Tuesday evening, although one was "under investigation for COVID-19" at Nantucket Cottage Hospital.
Six new cases of coronavirus were reported on Nantucket Tuesday, bringing to 101 the total number of positive tests on the island since mid-March. Thirty-eight new cases have been confirmed on the island since last Wednedsay. No COVID-19 positive patients were hospitalized on Nantucket or in mainland facilities as of Tuesday evening, although one was "under investigation for COVID-19" at Nantucket Cottage Hospital.

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Wave of Small Business Evictions on the Horizon

Wave of Small Business Evictions on the Horizon

From SocketSite at SocketSite™
Governed by state law, local governments normally can’t exert control over commercial leases. But having been enabled by an Executive Order issued by Governor Newsom back in March (N-28-20), and then extended in June, San Francisco was able to enact an eviction moratorium for small and medium-sized businesses, effectively defined as businesses with up to $25 million in pro-rated gross receipts in 2019, which have been directly impacted by the pandemic.
But unless Governor Newsom extends the State’s Executive Order, which is set to expire at the end of this month, San Francisco’s commercial eviction moratorium will expire on September 30. And unlike San Francisco’s moratorium on residential evictions, landlords will not be restricted from evicting businesses for past due rents, with a one-month grace period to cure, once the commercial moratorium expires.

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Dave Grohl escalates drum battle with 10-year-old Nandi Bushell

Dave Grohl escalates drum battle with 10-year-old Nandi Bushell

From Andy Baio at Waxy.org
After admitting his child rival had won the first round and promising he had “something special in mind” for a follow-up, Grohl made good on his threat. “Every superhero needs a theme song,” he tweeted to Bushell. “Here’s one for you!”
When last we donned our flak jackets to report from the front lines of Dave Grohl’s ruthless social media war with a 10-year old drummer named Nandi Bushell, he’d taunted her with a challenge to play Them Crooked Vulture’s “Dead End Friends.” Bushell, who’s a very good drummer, obviously had no issue completing the task laid out for her. Last Thursday, she uploaded video of her playing the part and even added onto it by filling out the track with a few of her trademark screams of joy.

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Fire Season Drags On as We Wait for Relief...

Fire Season Drags On as We Wait for Relief...

From California Snow Forecaster Bryan Allegretto at The Tahoe Daily Snow
That map already looks similar to a La Nina pattern, but also an early-season pattern with the jet stream aimed to our north. Things can change fast around here later in October. We will be watching with anticipation for heavy rain and snow that could put a quick end to the fire season, at least for northern CA.
That map already looks similar to a La Nina pattern, but also an early-season pattern with the jet stream aimed to our north. Things can change fast around here later in October. We will be watching with anticipation for heavy rain and snow that could put a quick end to the fire season, at least for northern CA.

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Djokovic, After U.S. Open, Says He Is Working on the Mental Side of Tennis

Djokovic, After U.S. Open, Says He Is Working on the Mental Side of Tennis

From By Ben Rothenberg at Tennis
Djokovic admitted that his disqualification, although somewhat unlucky, was “not completely out of the blue” given his propensity for expressing anger on the court, which has sometimes included being reckless with equipment.
“I’m working mentally and emotionally as hard as I am physically, trying to be the best version of myself on the court, off the court,” Djokovic said Monday from Rome, where he will compete in the Italian Open this week. “I understand that I have outbursts and it’s the personality and kind of player that I have always been.”He added: “Obviously I went through ups and downs in my career, managing to control my emotions more or less. But you’re alone out there, it’s a lot of intensity, a lot of pressure, and you have to deal with all of that.”

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Severe wildfire conditions will continue across California, but pattern shift will improve air quality

Severe wildfire conditions will continue across California, but pattern shift will improve air quality

From Daniel Swain at Weather West
Around 3.5 million acres have burned so far in California in 2020. That’s around 3.5% of the entire land area of the state, and is approaching double the previous record for the greatest acreage burned during a single year in the modern record (~1.9 million acres in 2018)
Then, on top of all of that: the smoke. An extremely large volume of dense, choking smoke has been generated by these numerous extreme large wildfires across California, Oregon, and Washington–leading to “smokestorm” conditions of historic proportions extending all the way from the Mexican to Canadian border (and even farther, at times). Air quality has ranged from “poor” to “extremely hazardous” across California for many consecutive days–making it difficult to even open windows, let alone spend time outside.Even more dramatic, though, was the vertical depth and density of these smoke plumes last week. At one point, multiple fires were generating explosive pyrocumulonimbus (fire thunderstorm) clouds that injected smoke all the way toward the top of the troposphere and even briefly into the stratosphere. The depth of this smoke column–which extended from the surface to nearly 30,000 feet–was sufficient to essentially block out the sun even at midday in some regions, leading to surreal and Bladerunner-esque scenes throughout Northern California. Aside from dramatically altering everyday life, these dense smoke plumes have also radically altered local meteorology–bringing temperatures 10-20 degrees cooler than the ambient airmass would support as solar radiation was largely unable to penetrate the plumes.

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Scientists Detect Signs of Possible Life on Venus

Scientists Detect Signs of Possible Life on Venus

From Jason Kottke at kottke.org
A group of astronomers have announced that they’ve discovered evidence that there may be life in the atmosphere of Venus.
But the finding will also encourage some planetary scientists to ask whether humanity has overlooked a planet that may have once been more Earthlike than any other world in our solar system.

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The Work From Home Backlash is Upon Us

The Work From Home Backlash is Upon Us

From Ben Carlson at A Wealth of Common Sense
The Wall Street Journal reported this week JP Morgan told senior employees of the bank’s giant sales and trading operation that they and their teams must return to the office by Sept. 21.
But there are sure to be many large corporations with the attitude of If you’re making this much money, you better be in the office. People on the high end of the income scale may have the ability to work from home now but I wouldn’t bet on all of them keeping that perk going forward. There will still be plenty of old school firms with the midset of Netflix and JP Morgan on this.

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For Many, No Long-Term Health Impacts from Wildfire Smoke, But More Studies Needed

For Many, No Long-Term Health Impacts from Wildfire Smoke, But More Studies Needed

From By Robin Marks at For Many, No Long-Term Health Impacts from Wildfire Smoke, But More Studies Needed | UC San Francisco

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What do you own?

What do you own?

From Seth Godin at Seth's Blog
If you want to build a career as a freelancer, or a business as an entrepreneur, it helps to own something

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