WorkWeek looks at the privatization land grab at Laney college by the A’s owner John J. Fisher and also the proposed property development at the SF PUC owned Balboa Reservoir. Both projects would take public land that is needed by the community colleges for their students, staff and faculty.
In Oakland, the owner of the Oakland A’s John J. Fisher is the son of Gap Inc. founders Donald Fisher and Doris F. Fisher. He is also the head of the K.I.P.P. Foundation which has been privatizing education with his charter chain Rocketship and last year he gave $50,000 to the California Charter School Association to support anti-labor candidates throughout the state. His baseball company announced in September that he wanted part of the Laney college property for a new stadium. We interview Laney professor Chris Weidenbach and CCSF professor Rick Baum and CCSF Music professor Madelein Mueller.
The trusteeship of City College of San Francisco took power out of the hands of the elected school board and ended up downsizing the college by tens of thousands of students and also selling off the Gough Street property. Now Mayor Ed Lee and developers along with Habitat for Humanity are seeking to grab land owned by the SF PUC and presently used by the college staff and students and turn it into high priced condos.
Earlier this month AFT 2121 called for the PUC Balboa Reservoir to be turned over to the college instead of property developers.
Next, we will look a play that commemorates the 1934 Minneapolis general strike. We interview San Francisco playwrite and actor Howard Petrick. One of the most important general strikes in the 1930’s was the Minneapolis Teamster strike in ‘34. Like the San Francisco General Strike, there was the use of the National Guard to crush the striking workers and also battles on the streets. San Franciscan Howard Petrick has written a play called the “fight for 52 cents”. It is based around the role of one of the organizers Ray Dunn whose brother was also a striker. Ray had been through the grinder. He had been beaten up several times by the police on picket lines, attacked in the street by armed thugs, thrown into jail and confined in a stockade under military guard by the governor. He was a strike leader and Howard Petrick has brought the lessons of that strike back for today. It will play tomorrow night at the Marsh theater in San Francisco.
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