Gavin Newsom Goes Pol Pot: Orders Gardenification of San Francisco! All Residents With Eyeglasses and Presumed Bourgeois Tendencies Please Report to The Nearest Street Median to Begin Growing Food!

Chris Reed of the San Diego Union-Tribune sends word of a truly giant step forward in nanny-statism, courtesy of San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom:

All city departments have six months to conduct an audit of unused land—including empty lots, rooftops, windowsills and median strips—that could be turned into community gardens or farms that could benefit residents, either by working at them or purchasing the fresh produce. Food vendors that contract with the city must offer healthy and sustainable food. All vending machines on city property must also offer healthy options, and farmers' markets must begin accepting food stamps, although some already do....

And effective immediately, no more runs to the doughnut shop before meetings and conferences held by city workers. Instead, city employees must use guidelines created by the Health Department when ordering food for meetings.

Examples include cutting bagels into halves or quarters so people can take smaller portions and serving vegetables instead of potato chips....

Many of the details have yet to be worked out, including how much it will cost. Newsom bristled when asked how it would be funded because there's no money to implement the food policy in the budget agreed to by the mayor and the board's budget committee just last week.

"We have plenty of resources," he said. "This is not a budget buster."

Whole thing here.

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  • ||

    PS: Shoot the Kulaks

  • ||

    Good God! This asshole is running for Governor!

  • BlueBook||

    The gardening thing, he could get away with. Getting between the cops and their donuts, though... you better believe that's a taserin'!

  • Tim Cavanaugh||

    As a neutral in the San Francisco/Los Angeles rivalry, I have to say that Newsom could order all city residents to participate in North Korean-style human-wave demonstrations every day and he'd still be the better of the state's two big-city mayors. Not just because he's fine, but because his polity (where he is, amazingly, on the more conservative end of the continuum) continues to function at some level. Villaretardo's L.A., by comparison, is dying faster than a palm tree with fungal disease.

  • ||

    So follow me on this one...
    Main article states on the 2ksqft farm they produced 2000lbs of food. Granted it is not the most ideal crop, but if compared to average yield per US Farm for corn, it is about 75% less than what should be coming out.

    151 bushels per acre
    70 lbs per corn
    10570 lbs per acre
    43560 sq ft per acre
    4.121097446 pounds per SqFt

  • alan||

    News Conference:

    The mayor has just finished explaining his new policy --

    Newsom: I will now take your questions. You, in the first row with the incredible Oxfords.

    Reporter: When these ideas occur to you does it ever make you consider the possibility you have an undiagnosed condition like a tumor growing in your brain?

    Newsom: Uhm, no. Next question, you with the brown suede pocketbook.

    Reporter#2: Is there a history of mental illness in your family?

    Newsom: Aside from a brief stay in a facility by my Aunt Lacey in '66 there is scant history of mental illness in my family . . .

  • Abdul||

    It's my understanding that every San Franciscan with a grow light and a closet is already engaging in some form of agricultural endeavor.

  • Jeff P||

    So the South Park episode about San Franciscans enjoing the smell of their own farts was completely lost on these people...

    Also, SF has some of the best roaming food trucks in the country.

  • ||


    Now you can go where people are one
    Now you can go where they get things done
    What you need, my son.

    Is a holiday in cambodia
    Where people dress in black
    A holiday in cambodia
    Where youll kiss ass or crack

    Pol pot, pol pot, pol pot, pol pot, etc.

    And its a holiday in cambodia
    Where you'll do what you're told
    A holiday in cambodia
    Where the slums got so much soul

  • ||

    The mayors of the most "progressive" cities are simply amping up their race to be the first to implement new policies. New York with the nutritional labeling, this, etc. It's going to get worse, not better, because it's the scumbag mayors' egos on the line.

  • ||

    Well, I guess Reason is going hard to the conservative well on this one. God forbid someone step in and say, "Let's use empty taxpayer-owned space for something productive" and "We're no longer going to feed your Fat McAss using tax payer dollars." Dat'd be da gubmint messin wit mah rahts.

  • Federal Dog||

    You shouldn't be living with rats anyway.

  • Fluffy||

    Here's the entry page for signing up to accept food stamps:

    This page is for retailers - owners and employees of retail food stores. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is administered by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service through its nationwide network of FNS field offices. Local FNS field offices are responsible for the licensing and monitoring of retail food stores participating in SNAP.

    Any retailer that would like to accept SNAP benefits (EBT) must be licensed to participate in SNAP. This section provides information for retailers who want to apply for a SNAP permit. Today, the only form of SNAP benefit issuance is the EBT-Electronic Benefits Transfer card. EBT allows you, the retailer, to accept SNAP payment for food using the EBT card--a kind of debit card.

    FNS has numerous materials designed to help you follow SNAP rules and regulations. Protect your business. Learn the proper way to handle SNAP transactions. The Retailer Training Guide will help you learn the Program rules and answer common questions about the Program. You can also find out what food items can be sold for SNAP benefits - and what things cannot be sold. We want you to be successful. Know and follow the laws and regulations, train your employees carefully, and monitor their performance -these are all ways in which you can help to ensure your success in SNAP.

    The staff of your local FNS field office is available to answer your questions and advise you on Program rules and procedures. If a situation arises that you are not sure how to handle, you should always contact the FNS field office that services your area for assistance.

    Remember, it is against the rules and regulations of SNAP for you to accept or redeem any SNAP benefits until you are authorized by USDA, FNS. Each store location under your ownership must have a separate SNAP permit; you must submit a separate application for each store that you own. If your store changes ownership, if you move, or if you close your store, your SNAP permit is void. You cannot transfer your permit to someone else.



    http://www.fns.usda.gov/fsp/retailers/default.htm

    The most truly offensive and pernicious aspect of the modern regulatory state is the way it criminalizes benign behavior.

    So if I grow some tomatoes in my garden, and I want to sell some of them to somebody for $5, I am to Newsom a criminal if I don't sign up for a license to be a SNAP vendor, and make arrangements to receive electronic payments via EBT card. If I sell my tomatoes from home today and from a farmstand tomorrow without changing my license, I am also a criminal.

    Doesn't anyone see the absolute absurdity of this? What aspect of handing someone a bag of tomatoes and taking $5 for it [without doing all of this SNAP nonsense beforehand] is the criminal activity that requires punishment?

  • ||

    Episiarch,

    Just so--look at that dickhead Nickels in my own fair city, where today's top stories on his homepage include:

    New Record for Recycling!
    Farmers Markets Changes

    and of course,
    Nickels Leads Mayors !!

  • Zeb||

    a.j.
    I tend to doubt that they are growing commercial corn in their gardens. Corn is definitely not typical in terms of yields per area. Assuming that they are growing a variety of vegetables, 2000 lbs of food from a garden 40'x50' sounds like a pretty decent yield to me.

    Don't get me wrong this is pretty fucked up as a government mandate. But if it were a voluntary private effort, I would say it is a great idea.

  • MS||

    I actually like the point about lesaing out unused space...that it has to be for food and all these other restricitions may be a little much, but it is better than them taking land to grow crops.

  • Fluffy||

    Well, I guess Reason is going hard to the conservative well on this one. God forbid someone step in and say, "Let's use empty taxpayer-owned space for something productive" and "We're no longer going to feed your Fat McAss using tax payer dollars." Dat'd be da gubmint messin wit mah rahts.

    Rob, this proposal will require a bureaucrat be appointed to determine how many pieces bagels should be cut into at meetings and presumably to write and distribute memos, hold training meetings on the guidelines, etc.

    Micromanagement of "food policy" in response to liberal fashions regarding "sustainability" and the like is just a humorous example of the way the state grows. It grows because someone in government says, "Let's hire someone to count how many blades of grass are between the sidewalk and the road on every street in the city" and no one says, "That's stupid."

  • ||

    This is a spot-on, sardonic South Park bit, right?

    RIGHT?

  • ||

    I can't wait to see the gardens in median strips...any bets on how long until someone gets run over while farming a median strip?

  • ||

    Rob--I'm going to need your TPS reports by the end of the day.

    Oh, and I'll need you to come in on Saturday this weekend. Those bagels aren't going to cut themselves, you know.

  • SpongePaul||

    wtf farmers HAVe to accept fucking food stamp cards. a private farmer selling ot a private person should be able to accept whatever payment the want cash check or charge. and btw how much is the companie providing the cards charging per transaction 3-5% like most companies, so not only have they banned a farmer from making a living freely, they have now imposed a 5% tax off the top for the privlage of him accepting debit cards. SOUNDS FUCKED and UNLAWFUL to me!

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Gavin Newsom for Food Czar!

    Now, if you'll excuse me, this box of corn flakes isn't going to count itself, and they have to be sorted by size and color...

  • ||

    How long will it be before city workers sue the city for their eating disorders? The city made them so portion conscious they became anorexic.

  • ||

    Episiarch,

    Just so--look at that dickhead Nickels in my own fair city, where today's top stories on his homepage include:


    Matthew, I am in the same fair city, so I know about Nickels, that beady-eyed fat piece of shit. I can't wait for him to get challenged by...carbon copies on the city council.

  • ||

    I know people get all uptight when we talk about secession, but what about rejection? Can we throw out locales or states that the rest of us don't like?

  • ||

    I don't have any problem with trying to use unused city land, but who wants to eat something grown on a highway median strip? I can't imagine it's the best soil quality, and all the car exhaust won't help.

  • Xeones||

    Papaya, you'll eat disgusting shriveled median vegetables and like it.

    I can't wait until some (most?) of the workers hired to tend these city gardens turn out to be illegal.

  • ||

    Wait... none of the land is private? So what's the big deal?

    I kind of like the idea of a city at least allowing citizens to use the land it's taken.

  • ||

    The Peoples Republic of California are imposing their collective will on everyone, that tear's it from here on out i'm referring to San Francisco as New Moscow.

  • ||

    Good God! This asshole is running for Governor!

    Meh. What asshole isn't?

  • ||

    The Dear Leader has announce a program of Juche for the People's Democratic Republic of San Francisco.

    Strange.

    Is this the result of living on a peninsula?

  • KT||

    Pol Pot?

  • ||

    It's just the theory that utopia can be achieved via domination of the masses.


    Fact of the matter is that it can only be attained by sweet talkin the folks into submission. When they submit, they feel it's voluntary.

  • Russ 2000||

    What if I want a third of a bagel? One quarter isn't enough, one half is too much. Are public employees too unskilled to use a knife?

  • alan||

    Schizophrenia: A psychiatric diagnosis denoting a persistent, often chronic tendency to lapse into lame parody (i.e. 'Dat'd be da gubmint messin wit mah rahts'), mental illness variously affecting behavior, thinking denoted by tendencies to prefix 'Mc' (i.e. 'feed your Fat McAss using tax payer dollars') to every normative activity the schizophrenic finds objectionable, and emotion typified by a mix of almost pained sincerity and a limped sarcasm; any condition in which disparate or mutually exclusive activities coexist ('We're no longer going to feed your Fat McAss using tax payer dollars' where the subject is indeed about how we micromanage feeding your fat ass).

    Note, Libertarians aren't 'going hard to the conservative well' on this or any issue. The actual problem is every fucking thing coming out of the mouths of liberals is bat shit crazy.

  • alan||

    PapayaSF | July 9, 2009, 4:25pm | #
    I don't have any problem with trying to use unused city land, but who wants to eat something grown on a highway median strip? I can't imagine it's the best soil quality, and all the car exhaust won't help.


    I bet when they dreamed it up, they didn't consider that don't you? What percentage of the land in their calculation fits that description, probably a great deal.

  • Xeones||

    I bet when they dreamed it up, they didn't consider that don't you?

    Naw, they considered it. All will become clear when San Fran finally gets around to banning internal combustion engines later this year.

  • ||

    The part of the story that caught my eye was that he's going to require everyone in homeless shelters to eat "healthy" food or go hungry. I'm sure this enforced consumption of arugala will go over well.

  • Mister DNA||

    When I lived in SF back in '87 - '89, there were some great locally owned bakeries/doughnut shops in my neighborhood.

    I used to look forward to working the night shift so I could make a doughnut run at 5am.

  • Federal Dog||

    We were there too at around the same time and have fond memories of what we called "The Palace Of Fine Fritters" (in Noe Valley). Good times.

  • wingnutx||

    You will all carry a copy of his little-red-cook-book at all times.

  • hmm||

    Instead, city employees must use guidelines created by the Health Department when ordering food for meetings.



    Does this exclude beer? Cause a lot gets solved in the parking lot after work while leaning on a truck bed drinking beer for depts. like Parks and Rec. or Cent. Garage. Or are those not official meetings?

    They are upset Chicago is ahead of them in putting grass on buildings. To be honest I like the idea of green shit all over the place, MO is damn near a jungle, but I don't like it enough to have some asshole with a badge from the city tell me it has to be green.

    The last city I worked for has one of the strongest all volunteer (very little city support in the way of money, lots of support in the way of helping hands here and there like heavy equip) gardening groups around. They agree to make just about anything perty and if you leave them alone on an empty lot for more than 10 minutes they start cleaning and planting things they have had donated. It's a pretty impressive group of bunnyhuggers.

  • ||

    San Francisco is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Too bad it's run--and largely populated by--complete kooks.

  • alan||

    A little diversion, but we are talking about gardening, I'm hungry, so here it goes:

    There are many regional variations on how to properly cook Summer squash, and for my money, this is the best and most basic way:

    Take four of five medium to large squash, cut them up into thin, no more than a quarter of an inch thick, chips. Place these chips into a bowl and evenly spread flour (plain, though it doesn't really matter, even Bisquick works), salt and pepper, to your taste, evenly on the chips.

    Place the chips evenly in a pan (the kind you would bake a sheet cake in), slice up a sweet onion, and a few spring onions if you have them, and spread evenly over the squash chips. Take a stick of butter, cut it up into eight even portions, place the slices evenly spaced over the chips and onions.

    Bake in an oven at 375 for one hour. Comes out yummy every time.

  • creech||

    Are they going to waive environmental impact studies, zoning ordinances, planning commission reviews, public hearings, licensing, blah blah blah? If not, the first zuccini will probably be ready for market by 2020 at the earliest.

  • ||

    " I can't imagine it's the best soil quality, and all the car exhaust won't help."

    And there's also all that bum vomit.

  • jtuf||

    I eat potato chips partly for environmental reasons. Potato crops produce more calories per acre than any other crop I know by a long shot. That means you can feed the same number of people on fewer acres if they eat potatos. A large bag of potato chips is about 800 calories, so it's the perfect portion controlled meal.

  • Ben Kenobi||

    At least these idiots are getting what they deserve as their state falls apart around them.

  • ||

    If they start using too much land for growing vegetation, it's going to take an awful lot of CO2 out of the atmosphere. I wouldn't be surprised if we start experiencing a prolonged period of global cooling. And when the climate cools enough, we'll all be eaten by polar bears.

  • ||

    I voted for that schmo on his first campaign, on my way out of San Francisco. The sad thing is, he's probably infinitely preferable to his major competitor in that election, Matt Gonzales, whose progressive supporters plastered the city with flyers of horned Satan-Newsom and cried when their boy lost.

  • jtuf||

    Good point, creech. My town outlawed comercial farming decades ago. We would need to change the zoning code to allow people to grow food for sale.

  • Rich||

    "An example would be using manure as a fertilizer rather than chemicals."

    More executive diraectives comin' right up!

  • ||

    "I bet when they dreamed it up, they didn't consider that don't you? What percentage of the land in their calculation fits that description, probably a great deal."

    Drudge linked to a story today about the lead contaminated soil in Michelle Obama's Whitehouse vegetable garden, the produce of which she has served to children and visiting heads of state.

  • ||

    I'd look for the link, but won't as I am a Reason rube.

  • Meteor Shit||

    " To be honest I like the idea of green shit all over the place"

    Then you'll love the film "Creep Show"

  • Steven Hall||

    "At least these idiots are getting what they deserve as their state falls apart around them."

    This makes total sense. In the European depression that followed WWII, people in Austria and Germany planted gardens out of necessity.

  • ||

    Before deciding to grow corn, please watch the documentary "King Corn," which highlights the empty nutrition of corn. Large yields do not, by any means translate into improved health...In fact, if the cows who are fed this corn were not slaughtered, they would eventually die from malnutrition!

  • ||

    rufrank2,

    Well, it probably won't be long until we kill people when they turn thirty. Socialized healthcare will work better with a younger population, and killing off everyone over thirty will help stop global warming.

  • MattXIV||

    Since some people apparently need to have why trying to grow food in urban settings is retardedly inefficient spelled out for them:

    -You can't use a plow on most of the spaces specified, so planting will be very time consuming and labor intensive. The same will be true of harvesting. Irrigation will either be very labor intensive or require substantial capital expenditures.

    -Rooftops and windowsills require planters, which are a substantial capital cost that you don't get with plain old land and if the city has an empty lot they have no current use for, it should sell it so someone can put something useful there.

    -Choice and quantity of fertilizer/pesticides/herbicides are severely restricted. You get more runoff into adjacent bodies of water when you have storm drains all over the place, so most of what gets put on the plants will end up in the bay. Also, using manure, compost, or fish meal will probably be non-viable for odor reasons.

    -Most urban animals are considered pests and this gives them an easily accessible food source. Besides raptors, the predators of said pests (wolves, bobcats, foxes, weasels, etc) do not take well to the city, and even though raptors can live in the city, they don't do as well as in rural areas.

  • ||

    To hell with your logic Matt, this is the ENVIRONMENT we're talking about here!

  • wingnutx||

    Cats are the most prolific predator on earth.

    Get you some kitties.

  • kilroy||

    They should just grow weed, sell it and balance the fucking state budget. And when they have the next wildfire no one will even mind.

  • ||

    What happens when SF's imperative to be ubergreen runs into its equally important to mission to let the homeless sleep in and befoul any spot in the city?

  • I<3NPR||

    What happens when SF's imperative to be ubergreen runs into its equally important to mission to let the homeless sleep in and befoul any spot in the city?

    Homelessness is a condition created by Republican policies. With Obama in office, that problem no longer exist, so I'm afraid you are making a false argument.

  • ||

    I thank god that my father had the sense to leave California and move to the more free state of Pennsylvania. A state were we are free to garden if we want and eat a whole bagel with full fat cream cheese. I'm just waiting for the big one to hit so this country gets an enema.

  • Mommy Obama||

    I hope they check for lead.

  • Water Drinker||

    I

  • Opps! Water Drinker||

    I

  • Water Drinker||

    Why won't it post my entire comment? I previewed and everything?

  • ||

    Seig Health!

    Kalifornia upgefucht ist, und outstrraighten needs to Bekomm! Zo, der approved foods only you will eat, und der gut tasten stoff verboten ist. Alzo, wasser von der plastikbottle.
    Fatbuggers und oldthinkers heraus- for you der train into ze nacht und nebel....

  • ||

    Who's money is being used to buy snacks for SF government meetings?

    If it's the taxpayer's, this practice should be banned.

  • Bill Quick||

    Also, SF has some of the best roaming food trucks in the country.

    Yes, indeedy. And the best tacos in the known universe are served out of the truck parked at the Best Buy on 13th.

    Are public employees too unskilled to use a knife?

    Public employees are not allowed to carry knives.

  • ||

    Perhaps this is insulting to ask, but if you want greenery and agriculture why the heck do you live in a central city, full of highrises and asphalt?

    I find the urban liberal obsession with greenery unfathomable.

  • ||

    California edges out in front of Florida again in the race for state with the most idiot politicians.

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