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Thursday, April 27, 2017

E'Ville Eye Editor Rob Arias Throws Another E'Vile Temper Tantrum

We Must Fight Blight!* Says Rob Arias
*Homeless People

Rob Arias, editor of the right wing pro-business blog the E'Ville Eye; a guy who always has a disparaging word for the working poor in our midst and who can always be counted on to crank up the hyperbolic invective against his favorite punching bag, homeless people, made quite a spectacle at the April 18th City Council meeting, even by his own pugnacious standards.  Down slammed the box filled with drug paraphernalia in theatrical fashion while he proceeded on with his infantile rage, voice cracking, about how the City Council is not doing it's job.  And by that Rob means they're not clearing away homeless people (from Oakland near Emeryville's border).

Rob's increasingly aggressive behavior against homeless people now finds obtuse expression in his attempt to highjack the City's Capital Improvement Program (CIP) to spend Emeryville taxpayer money on.... a dog park in Oakland.  Wait...what?
I am here to distract you.

Emeryville's right wing found themselves without a mooring after the Chamber of Commerce collapsed a couple of years ago and Rob, ever the entrepreneur, saw a niche to re-fix the pastiche of Emeryville's right wing around his new blog and make money while he's at it.  The demise of the Chamber of Commerce wasn't a random thing.  Rather it happened as a result of our citizenry's increasing expectation that their institutions should reflect their values. That left a small but angry base of right wing support for Rob's project.
Besides making money, Rob has used his blog for attacks on labor and homeless people.  He seems to hold a special kind of hatred for homeless people, seeing them as a problem best solved by clearance sweeps.  We remember Rob inveighing against 'those people' using Joseph Emery Park as "targeting" of the park.  Rob demanded the Emeryville police make sweeps of homeless people out of West Oakland at a Public Safety Committee meeting; they are drifting into his neighborhood he told the committee.  He's going to be a father he said and this will not stand he warned them.  Homeless people should not be seen by children...think of the children, he says in an attempt to shame the City to go all extra-legal on 'em.

After he was told Emeryville is not going to use its police to clear homeless people out of West Oakland near his residence, Rob came up with another idea: let's create a buffer at the border in the form of a dog park under the 40th Street Bridge he started calling the Halleck Beach Dog Park.  He used his blog to gather his minions and ultimately they descended on City Hall to berate and hector City Councilman John Bauters at an informal meeting the Councilman called to address the issue.  After explaining in his lawyerly way, the myriad problems with Emeryville locating a municipal park in Oakland, not the least of which is the large and ongoing expense that would be incurred, Mr Bauters skillfully separated the crowd away from the red herring of the dog park and exposed their true desires; they want to keep homeless people out of Emeryville, the dog park is just a means to that end even if some of them like dogs.

Councilman Bauters' blog and his (rather wonky) story on the Halleck Beach Dog Park may be viewed HERE.

The Halleck Beach Dog Park
Clean, no blight.
Never mind the use of a sociopathic overlay while formulating public policy and its attending problem of Constitutional prohibitions, we're not going to use our local government to adapt Rob's new word for homeless people unveiled at the John Bauters meeting, 'blight', nor sign on to do to them as the old Redevelopment Agency did to blight in a more decorous and genteel era when the word was merely used to describe decrepit buildings, not people.
Adding to the current state of callous narcissism emanating out of Washington and taking over the polity, Rob Arias is our own little local installment in this growing culture of cruelty sweeping the nation.

Like all (privileged) children who disparage authority not doing their bidding, Rob cries 'it's not fair' to the City Council...'you should be pushing MY agenda...clearing away homeless people and protecting my real estate investment.'  Many techie newcomers to Emeryville, those for whom we have built housing here exclusively over the last twenty years, obviously agree with Rob.  These are his readers.  They are concerned, besides wanting to know about the latest ramen shop and crime blotter (with its Black suspects), many of them attended the meeting about the dog park.  They scolded Councilman Bauters; Rob's right, Emeryville should remain "clean", no blight here they insisted.  That's Rob's community.

Like so many others on the right wing, Rob co-opts the language of the left; he calls himself a "community activist" and he is an activist (for his specific community) although not one normally associated with that title.  What Rob has done for community activism, he's also done for blight.  Community activism now includes reverse Robin Hood policies and blight now includes poor people (that need to be cleared out) in Rob Arias' Emeryville.


  1. Brian, thank you so much for entering the clip of Rob Arias at the Apl.18th Council meeting.I wasn't there so I missed his thespian performance. Think how long it must have taken him to assemble and rehearse that! And all to the end of vilifying Council Member Bauters. Couldn't he have better spent his time on doing something productive? I read Council Member Bauter's blog giving the comprehensive background on the Halleck Dog Park, but I suspect that Rob Arias didn't have the patience to do so, or that he couldn't comprehend it. As an attorney Mr. Bauters has expertise in these matters. Mr. Arias should apply criticism to his field of expertise - ramen reviews. He's right on those . . .

    Bob Hughes

    1. The whole thing has been very odd watching Rob Arias endorse John Bauters' campaign two and a half years ago when he first ran for City Council. I found it hard to see how the two could find common ground; Councilman Bauters cares about poor and homeless people probably more than anyone I've ever met while Rob Arias hates poor people more than anyone I've ever met. It was only a matter of time before the friendly relationship between them came to a crack up.

  2. Anyone can tell this guy is out for himself. You got it right when you mentioned his real estate investment. He acts like he does what he does for the good of the people. If that were true he wouldn't monetize his blog so much and what he advocates would sometimes go against his own personal interest.

  3. I believe both of you are right, to a degree; you just have different perspectives, and you both love Emeryville. This time I side with Rob.

    1. By "right" I presume you don't mean right wing but rather 'correct'. In that case you should endeavor to be more specific: do you mean he's right to insist that Emeryville police clear out homeless people from West Oakland? How far into Oakland should Emeryville cops venture to clear 'em out? All the way to the San Leandro border?
      Do you mean he's right in his insisting on Emeryville pay to build a dog park in Oakland? Is he right that children should not see homeless people? Is he right that the City of Emeryville should expand the definition of the word 'blight' to now include homeless people? How about poor people...should they be included in the new definition? Are they now blight as well? How about other undesirable people? Who should decide who's blight and who's not? Rob hasn't weighed in on these last questions but they naturally come up if the City expands the word to include homeless people because the City has a duty to clear out blight and we have a right to know how they intend on doing that.

  4. The problem is that Bauters strongly supported the dog park until he got elected. Then he immediately showed himself as the usual stereotype of a political opportunist. You've characterized him that way in the past, so it's probably no surprise to you. But it was a surprise to the rest of us.

    The people he lied to, and there are a lot of them, rightfully feel betrayed and angry. They wanted a local dog park. Bauters supported the dog park. Once he got his votes, oh, terribly sorry I don't represent you, I do what I want.

    Being a highly paid lobbyist should not be confused with social activism. It's financial opportunism. You are well paid to promote whatever it is you are paid to promote. That's what lobbying is, and it's fine. It's his job, and as a capitalist, he's free to shop his talents around to the highest bidder.

    He was a big homeless rights "activist". Now I think he's a big justice reform "activist". Why the change? He got a new job. Fine.

    But if he views homeless activim as the quaint notion that homeless people need to have a bridge to sleep under in someone else's city where they can shoot up in peace, then he doesn't get it.

    Why are we not requiring homeless services or at least a semi-permanent encampment as part of the Sherwin Williams project? Is that too close to home for him?

    Instead, he's busy making sure that there are Bocci courts and a pleasant place for rich, white people to picnic. Are you f---ing kidding me?

    I knew a local homeless guy who froze to death in Berkeley on Christmas Day two years ago. Let me tell you. He did NOT need Bocci courts, he did NOT need a bridge to sleep under, and he did NOT need any help enabling his addiction.

    Emeryville progressives suck. It's all just a big, self-absorbed show. No one actually cares about the results, just that everyone can see how virtuous we are.

    Shouting "Let them play Bocci!" out the window of your million dollar condo is not progressive. "Would you care to join me and talk about how progressive we are over a nice game of Bocci? Dear, is it my turn to throw out the pallino or yours?"

    Let's see some real activism. Demand that the Sherwin Williams project delivers a world-class, innovative facility for sheltering and supporting the homeless as a community benefit. That, would be activism.

    But it'll never happen. There's Bocci to be played.

    1. I really like your comments here. You've obviously been paying attention. I agree that there's much suckatude to Emeryville elected official 'progressives'. You have correctly observed how some of it is only being played to the cameras. The Tattler has reported on this extensively.
      However, in Councilman Bauters defense, he explained that he changed his mind on this dog park after he got on the Council and was able to access information that would cause a change of heart in someone looking out over resident's interests (the public in public policy). This is not a character flaw, rather it's something we are well served by; a politician looking out over our interests, not someone blinded by some meaningless overlay he might use for a re-election bid. I say cheers to John Bauters for being a smart and compassionate City Councilman on this issue.
      Now compare this to two other City Council members who went back on what they promised before their election, Scott Donahue and Dianne Martinez. Those two promised to deliver Level Four traffic calming for Horton Street before the election and promptly reneged on that after they took office. The difference? Scott and Dianne refused to tell us why they changed their minds. That's something completely different than what John Bauters did. That's just shameless lying. Perhaps there was a good reason those two changed their minds but they refuse to tell the voters if there was. We intend to see them punished for that.
      John Bauters was very clear before the election that he thinks that the poor and the homeless and other people less fortunate should be treated humanely. He showed us the truth of the inhumane folly of this dog park and for that he is to be praised. The phony here is Rob Arias who can't simply be honest and has to hide his attempt to clear out homeless people with the bogus dog park. I don't know about you but I expect public policy emanating out of City Hall to be rationally based and transparent. Halleck Beach Dog Park is neither.

      Please don't have any allusions about all this praise of Mr Bauters here. The minute he goes astray, the Tattler will hammer him down...and that goes for all of them.

    2. John is so well compensated for his homeless “activism” that he just bought a near million dollar condo across from the Sherwin Project and then promptly advocated that the two acre park be moved directly in front of his residence through his brief involvement with PARC. I wonder how much value he just added to his real estate investment by doing this? (This has a Tattler Story written all over it!).

      Meanwhile, homeless issues get worse every year. Perhaps we should compensate these lobbyists based on performance as John and his fellow highly paid ‘activists” deserve nada.

    3. Yes, I looked extensively into a possible corruption nexus between his Park Avenue Residents Committee PARC connection and his City Council status with regard to the Sherwin Williams project. There's nothing there. John didn't violate any laws nor did he even give the impression of violating the law. He correctly and fully recused himself for all discussion and voting. This was confirmed by the City Attorney.
      The Emeryville Tattler is hyper sensitive to issues like this. We are extremely interested in exposing corruption and malfeasance at City Hall and we have a pretty good track record on that score up until now (just ask Councilman Bukowski). But what we don't do is make stuff up chasing this goal. I want to catch Councilman Bauters, or any of the rest of the elected officials and staff, in an act of corruption or unethical behavior probably more than you. But first there has to be the illegal or unethical behavior. If you ever hear of anything for me to investigate please feel free to drop me a tip. This charge you're leveling now has nothing to it.

      Oh and I checked, Mr Bauters didn't advocate for a bocce court at the Sherwin Williams project...he doesn't even play bocce.

      Thanks for commenting and working to keep their feet to the fire.

    4. There's nothing illegal about reneging on campaign promises. There's nothing illegal about real estate speculation. There's nothing illegal about personally benefitting from the "Industry" that social justice has become and there’s nothing illegal with baiting and using members of the community for political gain and stabbing them in the back the first opportunity they see fit.

      There’s nothing illegal about any of these things … but it’s generally reflective of the personal character and ambitions of these people.

      There’s nothing illegal about villainizing Rob instead of the five people with actual power and ability to impact homelessness instead of distracting you with symbolic gestures like sanctuary policies and changing the pledge of allegiance to a folk song.

      As you aptly stated “I am here to distract you.”

    5. First of all, it is not "villainizing" Rob when the truth is reported about him. He did the villainizing of himself by himself.

      Glad to hear how you have personalized this issue because that's what it's really about; a group of people who hate homeless people trying to use the City of Emeryville to enact public policy to placate their anti-homeless (not very hidden) agenda. The 'stabbing in the back' was Council member Bauters realizing there's more to the issue than what the demagogues are saying and then working in the interests of the entire city rather than a few sociopathic Park Avenue neighborhood residents.

  5. For those who read the above and would like to learn the rules for Bocce, they can be found here:

  6. I was present when Mr. Arias made his remarks at the City Council meeting. They were indeed strident and confrontational. They also failed to address the complexities of the “dog park” issue. Citizens of Emeryville need to dig into the proposal and understand just what putting a dog park, for whatever motives, on Oakland property would entail. Councilor Bauters has been addressing these complexities, with an eye on initial and continuing financial costs as well as the legal and bureaucratic entanglements involved. The devil, as usual, lurks in the details. And I hope Mr. Arias too will move from insult mode and take a clearer look at them. A constructive, cards on the table debate on the issue could help the city.
    Bill Reuter, 37 year Emeryville resident and Chair, Budget Advisory Committee for the city.

  7. ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡ HILARIOUS !!!!!!

    John Bauters posted a tweet storm yesterday telling everyone how HE will be proposing homeless housing at 3600 San Pablo!! Tomorrow!!! Golly, what a great idea, perfect timing too. Made sure to tell the media and everything.

    Look out your window John. See that empty lot. Or is Sherwinn Williams too close to home?

    Tomorrow, when he tells everyone why 3600 San Pablo would be a great place to put the John Bauters Warehouse for the Homeless, I'm sure he'll mention the 2 most important reasons:

    *** That's not where the white people live. ***
    *** You can't get any further from John Bauters house and still be in Emeryville ***

    What a great guy!!

    Emeryville. Progressives. Suck.

    1. For an Emeryville progressive council member to suggest that the City build a homeless shelter anywhere in town shouldn't be described by the word 'suck'. A better word I can think of would be 'great or 'fantastic' or 'consistent'. The fact that he is suggesting it be built on San Pablo Avenue, closest to mass transit seems to make sense to me but I'm open to listening to why it could be built anywhere in town. It sounds like you're not interested in listening to that debate, settling instead on the "not in my backyard" trope. Are you accusing Mr Bauters of being against something that you're against? That what it sounds like.
      Homeless shelter in Emeryville, yes.

      *Farthest from John Bauters home would be north Emeryville or Watergate. San Pablo is the neighborhood right adjacent to his neighborhood.

  8. Emery Go Round runs stops one block from Sherwin Williams and goes straight to MacArthur BART. Its free too. Are u saying that Sherwin Williams isn't going to have adequate access to public transportation?

    Only thing is that Sherwin Williams is where all the white people live, so it's a Homeless Free Zone. Keep em under the bridge or over in the black part of town. Right?

    The white people get themselves a big park. Green space for the bourgeois and the artists.

    Dump a homeless shelter for drug addicts and people with mental health problems where? Where the poor people live. West Oakland can deal with it right? You guys are SO progressive.

    You're putting on a good show while you red line your neighborhoods against the social crap you cause, you screw the poor and people of color, and you dump the problems you've created on the surrounding cities.

    I said it before. Pay attention. I'm in favor of a world class, state of the art homeless facility AT SHERWINN WILLIAMS. Best of its kind. Developer can put as much as housing as they want to pay for it so long as it's got a huge homeless facility. Best and biggest in the country.

    It'll give all you white progressives the chance to do the volunteer work you're known for (NOT!) right next to your million dollar condos. Your kids can learn to talk about how progressive they are while they hang out at the bus stop with the crazy guy and the drug addict. Save the black kids from West Oakland from that trauma.

    It'll never happen cause y'all are full of it. Bocce and traffic calming for the white folk. Drug abusers and crazy people for the black folk.

    1. Nice try Mr Republican but you can't fool us with this bullshit.
      Once you get into your 50's (and you're not a Republican), this sort of right wing code switching is really easy to spot. Mr Anonymous isn't even very good at it. Wisdom; getting old sucks in every way except for this one saving grace.
      One thing I've realized is when you hear a right winger going off on a tangent against 'libtards' or 'democrats' or 'progressives', obtuse or not, pull out the object of their scorn and you have your answer: what they accuse libtards of doing is precisely what they, the right wing is doing. In this case we know Mr Anon hates homeless people and he's a NIMBY. We know this because this is what he's accusing John Bauters of doing. Remember, John Bauters is the most pro-homeless advocate anyone in Emeryville knows. And he lives what he preaches....this is John's 'thing'. So who are you going to believe, Mr Right Wing Anonymous (initials RA perhaps) or the guy who has devoted his life to caring for the poor and disadvantaged? Mr Anon says John Bauters' whole life has been a sham...amazing he can know so much about him.

      Having said that, as far as I personally am concerned, since I'm also being maligned by Mr Genius Anonymous, I'd rather a homeless shelter (and a big park) go into the Sherwin Williams site than what we're going to get...but that's just me. Bring on a homeless shelter at the SW site! But how come Mr Anonymous, you didn't advocate for this when it could have made a difference? Is it because you live near SW and I've got you totally pegged?

      Oh and yes, the Sherwin Williams site isn't nearly as connected to public transit as San Pablo Avenue is.

      I'm willing to listen to the debate as to where to locate this homeless shelter...Mr Anon has already doled out the condemnations before he heard the very Republican of you Mr Anonymous.

  9. As a nearby neighbor, I've witnessed at least three attempts by transients to build encampments in from of the Sherwin property which is directly next to Brian's living compound (and John's). Guess what? They were "cleared out" in a matter of hours. Where was The Tattler to express outrage over clearing our the homeless in front of HIS piece of real estate?

    1. Sorry Bub, that argument isn't going to work here. Let's assume you're correct that people were cleared out in violation of city policy as you say, please give details of that and you'll get a Tattler expose on that. We will not condone clearing homeless people out of Emeryville in violation of policy no matter where it happens. Give us details and we'll follow up with a story if a story is there.
      And a piece of advise, because you have sociopathic tendencies, you shouldn't assume all your fellow humans share that particular deficiency. Not everyone is like Rob Arias; there ARE people that don't want to see homeless people cleared out as government policy. Also some people writing blogs WILL do a story on a government violating it's own policies regarding the clearing out of homeless people. Just e-mail me the details please.