Richard Walker, Pictures of a Gone City in SF Chronicle, SF Commonwealth Club
"The Bay Area has gone through an astonishing growth spurt in the 2010s, with the region’s gross domestic product rising by nearly 50 percent from $323 billion in 2009 to $470 billion in 2016. The Bay Area is the unrivaled world leader in information technology, with the biggest concentration of firms, startups and risk capital. Silicon Valley now stretches around the bay and is home to the first trillion-dollar corporation, Apple, and corporate behemoths such as Google (Alphabet), Facebook and Salesforce....So what could be wrong? Quite a lot, it turns out.
Political paralysis: The Bay Area tradition of progressive politics has frayed badly. Too many of the elite are self-satisfied, too many techies are naive libertarians, and too many activists end up in Portland, Ore. A shabby record of kowtowing to the tech industry puts local politicians in a poor position to lead the country forward. The Bay Area’s blue tilt is now mostly attributable to the new working class of color, which wants basic needs met, such as good education, health care and transit.