Monday, June 22, 2015

The solution this city needs: GTFO

You know the problems.  There's nowhere to live and the rents are ridiculous!  BART is too fucking crowded!  Even if you say fuck BART, I'm driving, that's a goddam nightmare too!

Here are some possible solutions: (1) build a fuck ton more housing, especially in San Francisco; (2) Build a second BART tube from, I don't know, Dogpatch to Alameda to Fruitvale; (3) Build underground tunnels for cars all over everywhere.

That all sounds very expensive!  The second BART tube alone, which everyone basically already agrees has to be built, is gonna cost 12 billion dollars.  12 billion dollars!  That's probably more than Larry Ellison spends on yachts every year.

ALLOW ME TO SUGGEST AN ALTERNATIVE.  What's the common link between every single one of these problems?  TOO MANY PEOPLE.  Look at this:

Graph courtesy of FRED, some kind of economic thing blah blah blah Federal Rsserve Bank blah blah blah
Back in 1990, there were 723,496 people in San Francisco, at least until I moved here on October 15, then there were 723,497.  A lot of people, but in 2014 it's 852,469, including the doofus I saw in the Mission yesterday wearing a Facebook t-shirt, like who even does that? Why the fuck would anyone wear a t-shirt that says "Facebook" on it?

BUT I DIGRESS.  That means in the past 24 years we've added about 130,000 new people and zero new BART tubes and like 3 new apartments. No wonder there's a 2-hour wait for fucking brunch.

What we really need is plain: FEWER PEOPLE.

So here's the plan: We will offer 100,000 people a check for $20,000 if they move out of the Bay Area.  That's it, no strings.  You pack up your shit and hit the road, you get twenty thousand American dollars.  Holy shit!  You're already almost halfway there to owning this $45,000 charmer on Cabernet Parkway in Reno.  With 20 grand, you could probably buy a whole town in North Dakota or whatever.

It will be called the General Transitional Funding Office, or GTFO.

TOTAL COST: 2 billion dollars.  That's it!  Less than 20% of what the new BART tube alone will cost.

We can even break it up across the Bay Area a little.  Let's clear out, say, 60,000 people from SF, because that's clearly where it's most crowded, and then maybe 20,000 from Alameda County and 10 each from San Mateo and Santa Clara.  Marin and Contra Costa, you're on your own.  There's plenty of room out there.

Imagine SF with 60,000 fewer people!  It'll be just like it was in 2006.  We weren't really bitching about rents and that kind of shit in 2006!  It was an earthly paradise.  Look at these apartment ads from August 2006:

A delightful one-bedroom on Russian Hill for $1500!  A large 2 bedroom flat in Laurel Heights for $2750!  Yeah, it's still expensive but considering that ZERO BEDROOM apartments are now going for $2700, it seems like a pretty good deal.

Of course there will be enforcement issues.  What if someone who's taken advantage of GTFO tries to sneak back in?  I don't know, we'll figure it out.  Maybe a master list of everyone who got the money and check anyone who tries to rent an apartment or get a mortgage for a place in SF against the list.  We can work out the details later.  What if a homeless person takes the money and comes right back?  Who gives a fuck, we already spend something like $30,000 per year per homeless, so it's a bargain.

Just imagine San Francisco with 60,000 fewer people. Room to stretch out and breathe!  One less jackass looking at their phone and blocking the door on Muni!  It's only 2 billion dollars. Let's make it happen.


GG said...

Instead of *paying* them to GTFO, why not *entice* them to GTFO for much less money? We could start by prominently posting real estate listings for Denver at every Muni stop. Hey, check out this 5-bedroom mansion you could buy there for $45,000! A 3-bedroom apartment for 75 cents a month! We could also host "anywhere-but-SF" job fairs and provide free space at Moscone Center for non-Bay Area companies to come and recruit talent. Finally, we could repeal the laws prohibiting public nudity and offer free prizes to anyone who wants to walk around naked all day, because it's ALWAYS the people you don't want to have to look at. We could give extra credit to anyone who leads a naked drum circle. Anyway, your idea is a good one, regardless of how we choose to accomplish it.

Rachel said...

TK, when are you running for Mayor?

Funny post. I laughed. Then wanted to cry.

Anonymous said...

Simple solution, only people with kids or cool dogs get to stay in SF. Sorry cat people, OTGF (obtener todos los gatos fuera)

Unknown said...

Seriously....Facebook t-shirts and LinkedIn backpacks? They're all still in college.....

Anonymous said...

Silicon Valley: "It's not a career, it's a wardrobe."

Anonymous said...

oooh oooh easy test that will be better than people with cats: anyone who orders at Chipolte gets loaded into the burrito railgun. (We would sadly have to keep the Chipotles open, but rest assured they would only be used as traps.)

Anonymous said...

The best solution to the gentrification problem is to increase crime. To reduce rental demand in the city we should fire half the police. The additional savings from a reduced police force could be re-purposed to hire mercenaries and highwaymen to prey on google shuttles.

Andrea said...

Dem's strong words, TK. Dem's strong words.

When do we get started?

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