In announcing that she will run for reelection to the U.S. House next year, San Francisco’s Nancy Pelosi made an ill-advised, out-of-touch, incredibly deranged statement. If the Republican Party doesn’t use it in a continuous loop of ads during the 2024 campaign, it will commit an egregious error.
Pelosi, regrettably House speaker on two separate occasions, declared last week her intention to seek another term in Congress, which would be her 19th. The 83-year-old tweeted Friday that she was running because “now more than ever our City needs us to advance San Francisco values and further our recovery.”
At least there’s no mystery about her agenda. It’s clear what she wants – if wasn’t already.
At one time, San Francisco, or The City, as some locals like to refer to it, as if there were no other, was one of the great cities of this country and the world. Today it is often called “San Fransicko” because it’s more urban pigsty than the charming town that it once was.
And it became that way because of “San Francisco values” – the same ones the Democrats want to inflict on the rest of the country.
Just to keep memories fresh, here’s a quick rundown of the state of “The City”:
- As San Francisco’s mayor-elect, California Gov. Gavin Newsom promised in 2003 he would end the city’s chronic homelessness problem in 10 years. After his first year in City Hall, the homeless population was about 6,000. The most recent count, taken last year, puts the number at 7,754. First responders and hospital workers are convinced the true number is closer to 10,000.
- Visitors have been saying for years that parts of San Francisco look like Third World hellholes.
- Homelessness has become so prevalent that tourists can’t be sure where the fashionable areas of the city end and skid row begins.
- San Francisco is following what economist Thomas Sowell has called “the Detroit pattern,” which is “a nasty brew of ‘increasing taxes, harassing businesses, and pandering to unions.'”
- National Public Radio reported a few years ago that the streets of San Francisco were “so filthy” that “at least one infectious disease expert has compared the city to some of the dirtiest slums in the world.”
- Human feces on the streets and sidewalks became such an impediment that poop maps had to be created, as did a public works “poop patrol” to try to keep things clean. (Wiseacres have joked that No. 2 is San Francisco’s No. 1 problem.)
- San Francisco has become synonymous with out-of-control crime.
- Rather than continue to take losses because thieves have it far too easy stealing from their San Francisco locations, retailers are closing stores. Whole Foods, Nordstrom, Office Depot, Anthropologie, Old Navy and many others have shuttered their businesses by the Bay.
- The owner of two posh downtown hotels, about 2,900 rooms between them, is walking away from them due to “concerns over street conditions,” and “a weaker than expected citywide convention calendar through 2027,” both caused by the problem listed above.
The subtitle of Michael Shellenberger’s “San Fransicko” from 2021 is “Why Progressives Ruin Cities.” But also important is the “how.”
To borrow a term from Victor Davis Hanson, a scholar, classicist, farmer and lifelong Californian, San Francisco has “de-civilized” itself: Crime has been accepted as a premium to pay for living in San Francisco; the homeless, who are often mentally ill and addicted, have been treated more like endangered species that are to be protected in their environment rather than humans who need help overcoming their deep troubles; City Hall has been hostile to businesses for years; punitive taxation has suppressed opportunity; and with rare exception, hard-left elected officials (there are hardly any other kind in San Francisco) are not held accountable for driving the city ever downward.
Pelosi is just one of several hundred Democrats in Congress, and she represents a unique district. But “San Francisco values” are now the values of the Democratic Party. Its leaders, its major donors, its progressive foot soldiers and far too many of its voters want to make the entire country more like San Francisco. If the Republican Party and its candidates don’t run with this in 2024, they will be guilty of gross negligence.
— Written by the I&I Editorial Board