To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

If Only the Ordinance Applied to Biggest Chain -- Government Buildings

I'm sorry, maybe I'm missing the distinction...But isn't this just protecting already established businesses who might wilt away under new competition; rather than being some method to preserve the "character" of San Francisco?

Starbucks' effort to flood San Francisco with coffee shops ground to a halt Tuesday when the Board of Supervisors blocked a new outlet in the Richmond District under chain store regulations passed by voters last fall.


Jesse Fink, who has owned a nearby cafe for 25 years, filed the appeal on behalf of the Clement Street Merchants Association, which represents approximately 30 merchants in the area.

"I don't want San Francisco to lose its character and become a city of strip malls. ... That's what Starbucks is all about," Fink said in a hearing before the board.
I'm sure Starbucks -- and the folks who enjoy going to Starbucks -- appreciate that a guy named Fink, who would be a competitor to Starbucks, now gets to make business decisions for the coffee where they can and can't open new stores. Perfectly sane. Almost as sane as the retail regulations in the city:

Prop. G obligates the Planning Commission to conduct a hearing for any chain store (also known as "formula retail") proposed in neighborhood commercial districts.

Formula retail is defined as any retail sales establishment with 11 or more stores in the United States that maintains two or more standardized features, including decor, facade, color scheme, uniforms, signage or a trademark.
For the record, I'm all for this type of thing on the local level. Not the irrational fear of strip malls, or of the homogenization of America. No that's just stupid and counter-productive. Potentially even harmful to the people most in need, such as in the case of preventing Wal-Marts from opening new stores in a particular area. But that's the beauty of America and our supposed federalist system. People can match up with communities that best fit their desires and or priorities for what they want to get out of life. Me? Two words. Trannys and bukkake. And lots of both.

Full article here.

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