The late novelist Walker Percy used to wonder about why the suicide rate was so high in San Francisco, the most beautiful city in the world by his reckoning. I wish we had Percy still with us today—for many reasons—but especially to update his observations on how San Francisco’s decadence and dysfunctions are a reflections on the defects of the human soul.
Even The Guardian, the British leftist rag, is taking note of the fact that San Francisco has become a s——-.
It’s an empirical fact: San Francisco is a crappier place to live these days. Sightings of human feces on the sidewalks are now a regular occurrence; over the past 10 years, complaints about human waste have increased 400%. People now call the city 65 times a day to report poop, and there have been 14,597 calls in 2018 alone. . .
A city covered in poop is so disgusting it has to be almost comical. But the uptick in street defecation is the symbol of a human tragedy. People aren’t pooping on the streets because they have suddenly forgotten what a bathroom is, or unlearned basic hygiene. The incidents are part of a broader failure of the city to provide for the basic needs of its citizens, and show the catastrophic, socially destructive effects of unchecked inequality.
Hold on a minute! Who runs San Francisco? Progressives do—and have for decades now. Why isn’t San Francisco a beacon for the failure of progressive governance? More:
San Francisco spends hundreds of millions of dollars a year on anti-homelessness initiatives, but it has only managed to keep the number of homeless people from growing further.
I wonder whether all that compassionate spending actually. . . makes the problem worse? Nah. Can’t possibly think that. More:
A broader problem, though, is the lack of interest that many San Franciscans seem to have in improving the lives of the homeless. Many seem to view this population as a simple inconvenience, such as the tech bro who complained to the mayor about having to see “homeless riff-raff” or the rich woman who took out a full-page ad in the San Francisco Chronicle to report having seen a homeless man with a pair of scissors.
But wait—I thought San Francisco residents, who vote Democratic by about a 9 – 1 margin, are all good compassionate, earth-loving progressives! You mean they aren’t?
The Guardian may notice that San Francisco is a dystopia these days, but it doesn’t connect the dots to how the city is governed. The Los Angeles Daily News, however, is not so timid, wondering whether the spectacle of San Francisco’s failed progressive governance might have an effect on the 2020 presidential race:
By John Phillips
[I]f you’re thinking about betting the farm on Sen. Harris, you better be prepared to part ways with the chickens because San Francisco’s former district attorney has one big glaring Achilles Heel — the lawless cesspool that is the City by the Bay.
While many of us in California are well aware that the soft-on-crime policies that Harris helped pass while serving as the district attorney of San Francisco and California attorney general directly contributed to the complete breakdown of one of America’s most beautiful cities, people outside of California are just finding out. . . Time and time again Harris was accused of misleading or tricking voters into approving soft-on-crime policies that they have historically been leery of backing.
When, and if, Kamala Harris decides to run for president of the United States, voters will undoubtedly ask themselves the question, “Do I want the whole country to look like San Francisco?”
Harris has never actually run against a serious Republican candidate. She’ll be even easier to cast as an out of touch liberal elitist than Michael Dukakis.