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A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

In Defense of "Incivility"

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is. — Yogi Berra Civility is one of those things that in theory you...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Oct. 14, 2014
Last comment by Douglas Moran, 8 hours ago | 18 comments | 1702 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Politics: Empty appeals to "innovation"

The word "innovation" is widely bounced around in this campaign, both for Council and the School Board. Anyone actually involved in innovation knows that most...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Oct. 19, 2014
Last comment by Reason, 9 hours ago | 5 comments | 679 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Campaign Lawn Signs: What you can learn from them

To people who haven't worked in a political campaign, lawn signs may seem to be little more than visual clutter. But once you know what to look for, they can tell...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Sep. 30, 2014
Last comment by Sea REDDY, on Oct 15, 2014 at 7:34 am | 5 comments | 609 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

City Council Candidate Forums: Not worth watching

People interested in learning about the City Council candidates have asked me if watching re-broadcasts or...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Oct. 7, 2014
Last comment by Sea REDDY, on Oct 13, 2014 at 2:43 pm |
5 comments | 1257 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

LWV City Council Candidate Forum: Interesting Points

These are my observations about some of what I found interesting at the City Council Candidate Forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters on Tuesday September...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Oct. 1, 2014
Last comment by Sea REDDY, on Oct 13, 2014 at 12:45 pm | 3 comments | 1720 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Reducing Council Size? Against

This is my second time through this issue, the first being in 2005.(foot#1) I am opposing reducing Council size because its advocates have failed to make even a...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Sep. 25, 2014
Last comment by Douglas Moran, on Oct 1, 2014 at 2:15 pm | 15 comments | 1287 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Early Campaign Notes: City Council

I attended all the announced kick-off events for City Council...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Sep. 18, 2014
Last comment by Marie, on Sep 25, 2014 at 8:16 pm |
19 comments | 2755 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

"Flawed" process is normal

It is misleading for City Hall to label as "flawed" its action on the 27 University Avenue project (Arrillaga towers) and the attempted sale of 7.7 acres of...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Sep. 5, 2014
Last comment by Wondering?, on Sep 8, 2014 at 12:36 pm | 12 comments | 1317 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Candidate Kickoff Events: Public, not just for supporters

Kick-off events for the campaigns for the candidates for Palo Alto City Council and the School Board begin this Saturday and extend into mid-September. While there...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Aug. 22, 2014
Last comment by John Fredrich, on Aug 28, 2014 at 5:13 pm | 7 comments | 1789 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Candidate Slates for City Council: Time to reconsider?

Slates of candidates for City Council could address two major problems with Council elections: It could allow a broader range of candidates to compete, and it would...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jan. 18, 2014
Last comment by Sea-Seelam Reddy, on Aug 21, 2014 at 4:20 am | 3 comments | 1336 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

How Bad Policy Happens

Failure to lay proper groundwork for deliberations is a common cause of bad decisions. Sometimes this failure is simply ineptness, and sometimes it is a deliberate...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jul. 25, 2014
Last comment by Joe, on Aug 7, 2014 at 12:09 pm | 22 comments | 2828 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Public Transit Follies

Two false assumptions about public transit underlie "Smart Growth" as it is practiced here. The first is that trips other than commutes can be (largely)...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jul. 1, 2014
Last comment by Greenacres, on Jul 20, 2014 at 11:27 am | 26 comments | 2504 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Shills and Charlatans of "Smart Growth"

"For every complex problem, there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong." (foot#1) Any decent manager approaching a new project asks about the lessons-learned...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jun. 16, 2014
Last comment by Douglas Moran, on Jul 3, 2014 at 4:12 pm | 36 comments | 11204 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Should Palo Alto really aspire to be more like a Chinese factory city?

The concept of "community" is much diminished in "Smart Growth". The Comprehensive Plan Advisory Committee (CPAC) process in the 1990s was conducted...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jun. 22, 2014
Last comment by cw, on Jul 1, 2014 at 2:13 am | 13 comments | 5269 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

The Law of Supply and XXXXXX

Palo Alto's development policy is littered with bad economic analysis. The most patently absurd one is that the way to reduce the infamous Jobs-Housing Imbalance...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jun. 10, 2014
Last comment by resident a, on Jun 24, 2014 at 5:35 pm | 13 comments | 4110 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Stupid Growth: So-called "Smart Growth" is a cancer on the community

Rule of thumb: Anything that needs to be labeled "smart" isn't. Classic Brainteaser: "Why aren't there ants that are the size of elephants?" The...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Jun. 7, 2014
Last comment by CrescentParkAnon., on Jun 14, 2014 at 11:07 am | 27 comments | 3807 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Visioning or Potemkin Villages?

The city government of Palo Alto has announced that it will be sponsoring a series of meetings about the future of Palo Alto and wants ordinary residents to participate...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on May. 8, 2014
Last comment by david schrom, on Jun 2, 2014 at 2:55 pm | 10 comments | 2866 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

El Camino Sidewalk Width and the "Grand Boulevard" Delusion

The City is once again talking about wanting to make El Camino more "pedestrian-friendly" (foot#1) and once again refusing to consider what the actual problems...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Mar. 29, 2014
Last comment by need for change, on Apr 4, 2014 at 6:45 pm | 11 comments | 5086 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

The Palo Alto Bicycle Lobby: Impeding more and safer bicycling?

I did a lot of around-town bicycling from the late 1980s through the early 2000s (foot#4) and became involved in the City's bike planning. I found myself often in...

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Mar. 16, 2014
Last comment by pat, on Mar 31, 2014 at 11:47 pm | 52 comments | 29109 Views

A PRAGMATIST'S TAKE

Die, Pedestrians, Die: The City's implicit response to major long-term safety problems

City Staff claims that pedestrian needs are an important part of bicycle projects (see

Original post made by Douglas Moran on Feb. 18, 2014
Last comment by Right on, Doug, on Mar 4, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
19 comments | 2122 Views
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