Greed: Sacramento


 

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If your a renter in Sacramento, you more than a bit worried these days.  The rumors are true.  Rents  are on the rise in a big way.  Not in small increments but several hundred dollars a month.   Gia lived in her Pocket area apartment with her daughter for 15 years, re-signing her lease was a simple formality until last October. Her landlord would only agree to a month to month lease.   Her rent increased $150.00 a month and by December it was raised from $1220 a month to $1445.    She is currently in the process of moving to Woodland, her new landlord agreed to a one year lease.

There are many Gia’s in Sacramento, many are worried.   In many cities, with rent control or rent stabilization, landlords are only permitted to raise the rent significantly if there are major capital improvements, otherwise they are limited to a percentage.

Sacramento, isn’t Santa Monica, San Francisco or New York.  There are no laws preventing rent gouging, allowing landlords to increase rents to the moon and beyond.

Gia isn’t out of her old apartment, 15 years is quite a challenge.   She loved her old apartment, it was a 10 minute drive to her job in Elk Grove.   On this day she is bitter and angry. As she cleared her dining room, her landlord moved in new counter tops, new linoleum and a new dishwasher,something she asked for five years ago, she says its more than a slap in the face .

Its clear, there are people who can afford sixteen hundred dollars for a one bedroom apartment.  New apartments are opening in midtown every month with new tenants paying upward of $2300 a month.  Between 2016 and 2017 Sacramento had the highest year over year rent increases than any city in the nation.

These rent increases have displaced many Sacramentians and is contributing to the cities homeless population.  Throughtout the city, owners are increasing rent by 40% and higher, adding no more than a can of paint. Simply because they can. Welcome to the new gold rush. Greed: Sacramento.

 

CityFella

 

 

 

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Beyond the Primary: The Death of the GOP


 

An an Independent, I’m very concerned for the future of the Republican Party.  In short time pillars of the GOP has been dismantled .  Much of the damage can be attributed  to President Trump’s ineptitude. However much of it lies at the feet of elected Senators and members of the house, who have chosen party over country as they do not want to offend the narrow base of Trump supporters who’ll they’ll need in the primary.

The Republican party has had a long fragile relationship with women, blacks and Latinos.     Within the first year of his presidency, Millennials, LGBTQ, communities and other groups of color have joined that long and growing list of Americans who have been negatively affected by the presidents policies.  A gap that is widening by the day.

Winning the Battle and Losing the War

Within the next few years, once solid red states will become purple. Trumps voters overall were considerably older than Hillary Clinton.  The current average age of  baby boomers is 50.   After four years of President Trump, how does the party  broaden its appeal?

Today, the  future seems to be of little interest to  stake holders.  There is little opposition to the Presidents Policies, the focus in 2017 is a win at all costs.

While I’m not enamored by either party. I’m convinced we need at the minimum   two parties.  The question is, will one of those parties be the Republican party ?

CityFella

Showtime for John Saca


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His family has Sacramento in its DNA.  He went to Sacramento State.  His family’s “Filco” stores has been a part of Sacramento for decades.

He’s ambitious, a formative salesman and for a brief moment, he was the prince of Sacramento.

His project “The Towers on Capitol  Mall with two, fifty three story condominiums would have Image result for Northwest corner of 10th and j sacramento  changed the face of and quite possibly the image of  Sacramento.

 This massive  (500 million dollar) project would have been the most expensive in the city’s history.   In contrast, the Golden 1 Center was less than 600 million.  Before one support piling was shoved into the ground, one tower had completely sold out.    Financing for the project collapsed and CalPers reportedly the giant lot at 3rd and Capitol.

The collapse of the Capitol Tower, may have been a good thing for Saca. As the nations real estate market south, selling out the second tower and the rest of te complex would have been a challenge.   Less ambitious projects in midtown struggled for years.

In 2014, nearly seven years after the Capitol Towers project. John Saca said he would build the another Condominium/Hotel project at 10 the J Streets. “The Metropolitan” like the Capitol Towers project,  would be the largest and tallest building of its kind in the city .

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While this is John Saca’s vision for 10th and J Streets

This is what it looks like today

The block on J Street between 10 and 11 is arguably the worst block in downtown Sacramento.  As both sides of the street is filled with vacant boarded up buildings.

One side of the street is Saca’s property on the other side is the former Copenhagen Furniture Store and several other closed and boarded up stores. Copenhagen closed after a fire in the ninties and relocated across town.

Thirty to forty percent of first time visitors to Sacramento, travel down J street to the Convention Center or the Memorial Auditorium. Visitors staying at the popular Citizen Hotel pass by those empty boarded up buildings on route to the convention center.   Finally, after more the twenty years, the city has said enough to the owners of those properties.

Last week the City told Saca, he had until July to move forward with his project or he risks losing his rights to build on that site.   In other words, he would have to start over and reapply.

There are many of us rooting for John Saca, the local boy with a dream.

A former Sacramentian, now living in San Diego resently said about her home town.

 I think it’s safe to say Sacramento is the single most stagnant city on Earth. If New York City is “The City that Never Sleeps,” Sacramento is “The City that Only Gets Up When it Has To.”

Julianna Ress

The tallest single use condominium in Sacramento is the 14 floor Capitol Towers built in the sixes.    While there are several condo projects  on the drawing boards, none are under construction.  Including a smaller mixed used project on the site of  former Saca project at third and Capital.

The newest project atop the new Sawyer hotel adjacent to the Golden One Center has has sold more than half of the condominiums in less then four months.  The units are range in price from $600,000 to 4.1 million. The first homeowners should move in a few weeks

Other cities similar in size to Sacramento have several projects in the sky.  Our leaders in Sacramento, often get it wrong.   They propose expanding a convention center that has never been profitable.   Many cities planted seeds to get the first large projects off the ground.  They saw the benefits of bringing  empty nesters and the well healed back downtown.  Sacramento’s leadership isn’t quite there..

While is original vision did not come to fruition.   To his credit, Saca convinced quite few hundred people in a city with low aspirations. to share his vision.    That says a lot about his abilities as a salesman.

Despite his best efforts, he fouled out.  Locating a lender willing to take a risk on a large project could be daunting.

I am unashamedly a fan.   There are a quite of few of us ,who wants the local guy to put his signature on Sacramento’s bleak skyline.  To believe in Sacramento and people here.  But, everyone starts from START.  I hope he pushes ego aside and secure financing on a smaller project,say,  20 story condo on that site.

If he is the salesman he was in 2006, he will have his sky shattering building in the sky in few years.    The city will work with him, he still has few fans in high places in the city but they are waning.  The Sac Bee reports, neither he or a representative attended the zoning meeting last week  We are  often judged is by our actions.  Can he bring this project forward or is he man with dreams and renderings?

News At 11

CityFella

como estas


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I’m a Californian, lived here most of my life.  I’ve had Mexican/Latin friends all of my life

Roommates, housemates, friendships, spanning decades. Our families are interchangeable.   Recently, returning from LA , I called a friend to tell him I was planning to visit his family in Tulare on my way home.  After, I arrived, he told me, his abuela, who is in her nineties cooked throughout the night for my visit.  I still have her delicacies in my freezer.

I met Roberto, my first year of school in Fresno.  I struggled the first few months on my own.  With the exception of my mother in the Bay Area, no one knew of my dire situation.  The only food on my shelves was spaghetti, no meat, no sauce, just pasta and salt until my next pay check.

His family lived in Corcoran, a small city in Kings County.  On my first visit, everyone in his very large family was warm except for the old lady in the green chair (his abuela) I later discovered I was the families first black visitor and abuela didn’t trust black people.

Returning home, they loaded up the back of his truck with boxes of food for him.  I  remember being envious and wishing the food was for me.   When we arrived at my apartment, he said the food WAS for me.  Five boxes of food with cans of soda.  Somehow they knew.  We carried the boxes of food to my door,  I was so ashamed  I wouldn’t let him in my bleak apartment with a small black and white TV and a mattress on the floor.

Through the years my family has become more latin, english is their second language .

Despite my exposure to Spanish, my Spanish sucks.  Some,members of my family, go out of their way to make fun of me.  “I know you know this, say it!  and I do know it, dammit!  but I get it wrong.   Of course they love this.  This winter, I plan to take a few of them, to an isolated area in the mountains, where some of them may be discovered after the spring thaw .

 I can speak 30 words with confidence. I understand about 100 words.  Many friends assume I’m fluent.  Of course, this is usually after they’ve had a few drinks.

Through the years I have purchased, cassettes, books, Cd’s to increase my knowledge of the language, most are unopened.  I only remember the books then is when I’m visiting friends and family.    When it comes to como esta , I’m VERY CONFIDENT!  ‘bien, muy bien.   

WINNING!!!   

If you need an enthusiastic spanish speaking greeter  I’m your man!   I’m friendly!  Buenos días.  Buenas tardes, Buena noches ,adios with a big smile, beyond that it’s uh huh!  

CityFella

 

he wasn’t a terrorist because he was an American…dah!


This was one of the answers on social media to why Stephen Paddock isn’t a terrorist.  After killing 59 people and injuring nearly 600 others in Las Vegas.

Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov is a terrorist after killing 8 people and injuring 15 others in New York.  For many his crime is more heinous because he is foreign and from one of those countries  AND he gets 10 bonus points if he says he is a member of Isis. 

The Don said, extreme vetting (gun control) wouldn’t have mattered in Texas because the shooting ” was a result of mental health”.  Perhaps the Don could benefit from some mental health treatment. BECAUSE many states do not have a provision that prevents someone with  mental issues from buying a GUN!

What is it?

Is it easier to accept an acts of terror if the terror is perpetrated by a non European?

Terrorist acts at abortion clinics were justified because the terrorist did what he did because of his religions passion.   He was saving babies when he killed those five people.  

45 wants to limit people coming into this country from CERTAIN countries.  A gentleman on a cable news show defended 45’s position.   The fact that his was RADICALIZED in America, was ignored.   When asked, should we vet people who’s profile fits the Las Vegas shooter ( Terrorist) he said that wouldn’t work here.

 

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If someone killed someone you knew, your not likely to say he/she was emotional, passionate, or out of control!

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Never! 

People get into lengthy passionate and sometimes hate fill speech .  I’ve never understood it.  These are strangers people I’m not likely to meet. I’m not going to change an opinion or belief.   So I’m arguing Y? 

Duh!

 

In a perfect world.  The overwhelming majority of NRA members who support gun control and the elimination of Automatic Machine Guns would withhold their dues until NRA changes their position.

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Meanwhile, Praying for Better Days B Happy and Smile

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CityFella

Do kids have a fundamental sense of fairness?


Do kids have a fundamental sense of fairness?

Experiments show that this quality often emerges by the age of 12 months.

This article was originally published by Scientific American.

By: Katherine McAuliffe, Peter R Blake, and Felix Warneken SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN

Children have a reputation for selfishness. Picture a traditional morning-after-Halloween scene: A child is hunched over a huge mound of collected candy while their parent stands by begging them to share their spoils with a younger, less fortunate sibling. The frustrated parent in this scene embodies the common notion that the only way to get children to be fair is to forcibly extract it out of them, like blood from a stone.

After studying children’s fairness behavior for nearly a decade we argue that this reputation is, well, unfair.

We travel to public spaces in different cities and ask children to play a simple game: Two children who do not know each other are paired up and given an unfair distribution of candy. One child gets four candies, the other gets one candy. Here’s where things get interesting. One of the two children — the decider — can accept or reject the allocation. If the decider accepts, both children get their candy. If the decider rejects, both children get nothing. Imagine that, like the Halloween scenario, the child in power gets four and their partner gets one. What will they do?

If you are like most parents watching their children play our game, you probably think the decider will happily accept the four, creating a stark inequality with the peer. Children only focus on getting more for themselves, right? To the surprise and delight of many an unsuspecting parent, children — at least older children — frequently reject this unfair advantage. They are willing to sacrifice their own rewards to prevent someone else from getting the short end of the stick. Getting nothing seems better than getting more than a peer, even a child whom they have just met.

The act of self-sacrifice in the name of fairness is indeed surprising. But more than that, it flies in the face of our intuitions about where fairness comes from in our species. There is a commonly held belief that humans are fundamentally selfish agents and fairness is a construct designed to help us override our selfish instincts. Not only this, but the idea really seems to be that fairness doesn’t come naturally, which is why we need institutions like the justice system to make sure that fairness prevails. Psychologists and economists have begun to gradually chip away at this notion, showing that people are actually pretty fair even when they can get away with selfishness.

But this still doesn’t tell us where fairness comes from. Is fairness something that must be learned via extensive experience? Through explicit teaching from adults? To answer this question, we need to look to children. Indeed, a suite of recent studies with children suggests fairness is not something that takes a long time to develop or that must be enforced through formal principles and institutions of justice. Rather, fairness is an integral part of our developing understanding of how to social world operates and, perhaps more surprisingly, it guides children’s behavior from very early on.

Indeed, children apply a strong sense of fairness not only to themselves — they also stand up for others. We invited children to play a different game in which they learn about a decider who selfishly wanted to keep all candies for themselves, refusing to share with another peer. Our child participant then faces a choice: Do they stand by and do nothing or do they get involved and prevent the injustice? To make it especially difficult, children must pay a cost for intervening — they have to give up some of their own candy to prevent unfairness. Nevertheless, children regularly intervene, choosing to pay so they can prevent the selfish child from getting away with unfair behavior. Together, these findings show children hold themselves and others to high standards of fairness.

We are now sitting on a mountain of evidence from our studies as well as those conducted by others that suggests fair behavior has deep roots in development. Infants as young as 12 months expect resources to be divided equally between two characters in a scene. By preschool, children will protest getting less than peers, even paying to prevent the peer from getting more. As children get older, they are willing to punish those who have been unfair both when they are the victims of unfairness as well as when they witness someone else being treated unfairly. Older still, children show what we described above: They would rather receive nothing than receive more than a peer.

More recently, many developmental psychologists, including our team, have begun studying these behaviors across different cultures, asking whether children everywhere show a similar developmental pattern. What we have found is that certain aspects of fairness appear to be universal. For example, children everywhere seem to dislike getting less than a peer. Other forms of fairness, however, appear to be more culturally variable, perhaps shaped by local customs.

Of course, a mature sense of fairness consists of more than just reactions to inequality and, indeed, we see more sophisticated concepts of fairness in children as well. One bedrock of fairness is that you should share the spoils of your joint labor—equal work, equal pay. Children as young as three years are sensitive to this: When they have to work toward getting a toy or a treat, they are more likely to share the spoils equally with a peer co-worker than when each one worked on the task by themselves. They even track how hard each person worked and reward the one who worked more accordingly.

The bottom line here is that children, even young ones, show remarkable sophistication not just in their understanding of and conformity to norms of fairness but also in their ability to enforce fairness in others and to flexibly tune fairness to different situations. These exciting developments dovetail beautifully with work showing that adults are often fair even when they could be selfish, and suggest we need to overhaul the notion that humans are fundamentally out for themselves at the expense of others. Instead, we should adopt the idea that fairness is a key part of our developing minds from as early as they can be studied.

So, sure, children are selfish sometimes. We should recognize, however, that just like in adults, alongside their impetus for self-maximization runs a deep and maturing concern for fairness — not just for themselves but for others as well.

I have a (blank) friend


If you want to quickly change the temperature of a room. Change the topic to race. Especially if  there people of different races in the room.

On Social Media someone recently posted something that said:  Blacks aren’t currently slaves and Whites aren’t slave owners.  My take: He was saying its history, get over it.

The author was immediately called a racist.    He seemed young and his views where simplistic, but I didn’t get a racist vibe from him.  As  the waves were getting stronger and higher, he reached into his wallet and pulled out the “I have a black friend card”   “I chuckled”  “Not the I have a Black friend so that doesn’t make me racist card!    

This is a universal card. Used the world over by people of many hues and backgrounds. Owning it legitimizes you. It says to the world I am an expert because, I know one or more persons who is of a different race or culture.

I grew up during the second wave of integration.  This was the late sixties, black students didn’t need military escorts. (At least in California)  The transition was difficult.   Some black parents didn’t trust white people and some white people told their children to avoid blacks.  The great thing about children is they don’t have the baggage, the history the great unknown fear their parents have.  They simply see another child.

As children we knew which households were off limits. There was never any discussion about it, it was all about our friendships . We protected each other, I had a friend who’s father vowed to beat him if he ever saw him or any of his siblings in the company of niggers, so we dropped him off a mile from his home.  (We recently re-connect on Facebook)

Through the years people would produce their cards.  If someone had a white friend at work the card would make them the authority on white people everywhere. ” I know this Chinese man and they are…….  Unfortunately, these card are still in use.

Not long ago at a suburban mall, I was intrigued by an argument three teenagers (13-15) were having. One kid with bright red hair and freckles was wearing a black do rag, the others were wearing Lakers Jerseys. The argument was about how street they were or the most black (like). They argued about who owned the most rap CD’s, dared each other to rap in the Galleria.  The winner had a card in his pocket. His grandma lives in San Leandro, which is right next to Oakland, they’ve shopped in Oakland in stores filled with black people and no one was sacred. Boo Yaa!

There are often indicators of the number of people you know outside your race by the declarations you make: ” I have an Asian friend” “The Jewish People”  “Lesbians are”  “They are because I know this one… ” Often making sweeping generalizations.

Baby Steps 

I see color, sometimes in HD.  I am blessed with good friends, they come in many different hues and cultures.  Some of us have different political and religious views. We are comfortable talking about race.   Its not a perfect world, and sometimes we misspeak, get angry,  all the normal things human beings do. But we trust and love each other.

I find because of those relationships I have a greater understanding of people in general and I’m not fearful of other human beings.  When refer to my friends, they aren’t my (blank) friends or collectibles,they are simply my friends.

We need to talk about race. You may be sympathetic to other races but it means nothing if you fear them.  If you talking about race to someone who shares your skin color and views your education will be limited.

If you have a friend who is of a different hue and culture, This is where you start, this person has a sense of who you are and knows your intentions.   Set ground rules. ( It wont be necessary in the future)  If either of you say something that makes the other uncomfortable, it was not intentional and just as you would with any other friend, if you sense there are hurt feelings for any reason,don’t bolt for the door, fix it.

 

Racism will always be with us as there are people who have large bolts on their brains. They believe groups of people, cultures who do not look like them, believe what they believe are the enemy.  The good people will always rise above!

CityFella