City should be more attractive for business 

Our progressive ex-supervisors presided over an unprecedented decline in the San Francisco labor market. Close to 100,000 good-paying jobs left The City during their disastrous tenure. The once-thriving closed and boarded up storefronts all over the retail and financial districts are testimony to that.

It’s still early, but our new crop of centrist supervisors seems to be leaning toward “bird in hand” economics instead the previous “scorched earth” approach. It would take more than 1,000 Twitter tax break deals to undo all the damage done to The City’s labor market during the past 15 years, but it’s a start. San Francisco has to get away from depending on tourism as the end all.

Our payroll tax should be eliminated or a sliding-payment scale used to keep and get more big firms into The City. There has to be a business-reliable approach that attracts more-diverse and self-sustaining big-idea companies back to San Francisco.

R.E. O’Leary, San Francisco

Progressives will lose

What are the overarching goals of the California “progressive” movement? I see a coalition of labor unions, teacher unions, young environmental groups, feminists, ethnic media, etc., in an organized push for group entitlements. All are solidly supporting the Dodd-Frank hidden-quotas bill. These progressive folks of the left are determined to change California from a Democratic to a “quotacratic” state. Their major barrier is Proposition 209, which says: “The State shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to an individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, etc.”

Philip Melnick, San Francisco

Unions have far reach

Collective bargaining rights imbue unions with an undue monopoly position contrary to the public good, as unions’ campaign cash, stockpiled via mandatory dues, generally elect politicians who in turn are obligated to represent taxpayers in negotiations with those very same unions.

This allows unions to essentially “work” both sides of the bargaining table, leaving the taxpayers misrepresented and vulnerable to increased taxes to finance escalating wages and unsustainable pension largesse.

With public attention increasingly focused on the municipal and state deficits now raging out of control, the growing realization is that this representational imbalance is the principal reason for it.

Tony Favero, Half Moon Bay

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