Vagrancy. The San Francisco Treat



Federalist: About two years ago, I moved to San Francisco from Manhattan in order to pursue a position in economic research at the Hoover Institution. I had originally been working in finance, but welcomed with a special eagerness the opportunity to enter the realm of public policy.

My only interaction with California had been limited to a week in the Piedmont-area of Oakland, California during my junior year of college. Over the course of that first visit, I experienced the “quintessential” San Francisco that characterizes most people’s expectations of the city. I bought colorful groceries at a quaint farmer’s market. I ate an In-N-Out burger with the “special sauce” and donned the silly hat as I scarfed it down. I gawked at the sheer amount of tie-dye I witnessed in Haight-Ashbury. I even braved the earthquake simulation at the California Academy of the Sciences. In short, I developed a quick affection for the city that was only to be challenged severely upon my move.

Between receiving a job offer and my first day of work, I had precisely three weeks to relocate to the Bay Area. Despite my scant knowledge of the region beyond my short stint in Oakland, I managed to secure a decent apartment within my budget and within an hour or so of my work.  From my estimations, the neighborhood seemed adequately safe, though perhaps slightly less cared for than my old neighborhood on the Upper East Side. Still, it was a home, and I was appreciative. The afterglow of my moving victory, however, was short-lived.

Within a few days of moving to San Francisco, I immediately noticed something I had not been accustomed to seeing in New York — a preponderance of glittering sidewalks. Every few blocks, it would not be uncommon to see shards of glass strewn across the pavement, and I quickly learned that my new city was notorious for car break-ins. One of the first pieces of advice I received from a friend upon moving to San Francisco was that I should empty my car each night and never leave anything in my vehicle—not even a tissue box. After staring incredulously at my friend for a moment, she quickly responded by explaining that theft from vehicles was a common occurrence in the city and that to leave items in my car was simply “asking for it.” MORE

12 Comments on Vagrancy. The San Francisco Treat

  1. Well, she can move if she doesn’t like it. She spent time hitting the tourist areas which are kept some what clean of the homeless and piles of turds. It would definitely turn off anyone going to San Francisco to enjoy the beauty of it, if there’s anything beautiful about it. I use to live there 40 years ago, it doesn’t take long for a once beautiful city to become decayed with liberals and their ideals. The only reason I have to go there is to catch a cruise ship, and that’s it. The parking garage is secure and it’s a 5 minute walk across the street to the ship. They’ve kept that area free of the homeless, but walk down 3 blocks towards the ferry building and there they are! It is sad.

  2. This would be a great platform for conservative mayors, city councilmen and even governors……If You Want To Live in a Shithole Vote Democrat!

  3. It isn’t like San Francisco is the only democrat controlled metropolitan shit hole that encounters the degradation she speaks of.

    Name one Democratic controlled metropolitan City that doesn’t have these problems? NYC? Chicago? Memphis? St. Louis? Baltimore? Cleveland? Cincinnati? Detroit? LA? Miami? Atlanta? New Orleans? Washington DC? Etc., Etc.

  4. The Hoover Institute is at Stanford, which is in Palo Alto. Why in the hell would the author move to SF? Unless you have been living under a rock for the last 20 years, you would know that SF is a cesspit. Hoover institute shouldn’t have too much confidence in her investigative abilities.

  5. Not to be flip, has this woman been in a coma for the past 5 years?
    You have to be extremely ambivalent about the culture in Frisco (they hate that name) to not know of the abyss it has descended into.

  6. I once told a healthy young vagrant in San Francisco to “get a job” instead of panhandling.

    His response was, “this is my job”.

  7. A group of RE developers gets the word out that that are working to secure Alcatraz Island for ultra luxury dwellings for working 1%ers in SF, to be served by private ferry and helicopter service.

    Politicians will demand that the development include “affordable” units for homeless people. Homeless people move in, ferry and helicopters leave. Problem solved.

  8. Those in the bay area will be glad to know Portland’s mayor is doing all he can to relieve other democrat shit holes of their undesirables. He’s committed to attracting homeless bums, drug addicts, criminals, the insane, sidewalk shitters, pan handlers, unemployables, and other democrats just to make sure the democrats win elections. Because of all the rain Portland’s mayor needs thousands more San Francisco bums, using the sidewalks as toilets, so Portland can smell like San Francisco.

  9. Let’s do two problems at once.
    The streets are awash in feces and urine, which is a health hazard.
    Robot Sidewalk carts like freight trains patrol the streets washing the sidewalks clean with high pressure disinfectant sprays.
    The other problem will get out of the way or be cleaned and come out as fresh as the morning sunshine.


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