LIberals do not just hate big business, but small business too!

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by peilthetraveler, Feb 11, 2012.


    Damn liberals making someone wait 2 years to open a freaking ice cream store. This person had to pay rent on an empty shop for 2 years before they were allowed to open for business. Give me a break, this how you like the country to be run. Government in everything. Heck, people in Cuba can open a business faster than that.
  2. Clicked the link, logged in and all to NYT, don't see the story. You have the actual headline?

  3. San Francisco Mayor Edwin M. Lee’s office announced last week a $1.5 million fund to help small businesses, calling the sector the “Backbone of SF Economy.”

    If true, then the saga of a new ice cream shop seems to indicate that the city needs a good chiropractor.

    The Ice Cream Bar opened Jan. 21 in the Cole Valley neighborhood — an homage to the classic parlors of the 1930s, complete with vintage soda fountain and lunch counter seating. It has become an immediate sensation, packed with both families and the foodie crowd, savoring upscale house-made ice creams and exotic sodas (flavorings include pink peppercorn and tobacco). The shop also employs 14 full- and part-time workers.

    But getting it opened wasn’t easy.

    “Many times it almost didn’t happen,” said Juliet Pries, the owner, with a cheerful laugh.

    Ms. Pries said it took two years to open the restaurant, due largely to the city’s morass of permits, procedures and approvals required to start a small business. While waiting for permission to operate, she still had to pay rent and other costs, going deeper into debt each passing month without knowing for sure if she would ever be allowed to open.

    “It’s just a huge risk,” she said, noting that the financing came from family and friends, not a bank. “At several points you wonder if you should just walk away and take the loss.”

    Ms. Pries said she had to endure months of runaround and pay a lawyer to determine whether her location (a former grocery, vacant for years) was eligible to become a restaurant. There were permit fees of $20,000; a demand that she create a detailed map of all existing area businesses (the city didn’t have one); and an $11,000 charge just to turn on the water.

    The ice cream shop’s travails are at odds with the frequent promises made by the mayor and many supervisors that small businesses and job creation are top priorities.

    The matter has also alarmed some business leaders, who point out that few small ventures could survive such long delays.

    “Someone of lesser fortitude would have left three months into it,” Ted Loewenberg, president of the Haight Ashbury Improvement Association, said of Ms. Pries. “Through these hard times we’ve heard all the rhetoric about streamlining the process, about one-stop shopping. It hasn’t happened.”

    That could soon change. An ordinance easing the process for opening a small business is expected to be considered by the supervisors within weeks. It has already been approved by the planning commission.

    “The city has had the reputation of being a difficult place, and a hostile place, to do business,” said Mark Farrell, the city supervisor who has the most private-sector experience (he still operates a venture capital firm). “We’re changing the dialogue.”

    According to Mr. Farrell, a critical shift occurred last year when supervisors approved a tax incentive to keep the headquarters of Twitter, the social network, in the city after the company threatened to move.

    But he admitted that such actions were relatively easy compared with reforming the city’s entrenched bureaucracy. “To change the inner workings of government is a longer proposition,” he said.

    Christina Olague, a former Planning Commission president who was recently appointed city supervisor, said that planning codes governing businesses had ballooned over the years to become hundreds of pages long. “It’s so convoluted,” she said. “It’s so difficult for these businesses to move ahead.”

    Even the planning department itself is calling for reform. “Hello City Planner,” an animated cartoon produced by the department and posted on its Web site, depicts a litany of farcical city hassles faced by a woman applying to sell ice cream.

    “Wow! That’s a long time and expensive,” the ice cream lady says after the planning employee in the animation explains the slow process and high fees.

    Cases like Ms. Pries’s inspired the video, although some believe her runaround was exceptionally absurd. Even after she acceded to all the city’s demands, her paperwork sat unprocessed for months. Ms. Pries would not say exactly how much it all cost, including construction, but smiled and nodded when asked if it was in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    And yet, remarkably, she does not complain. Ms. Pries is as effervescent as her sodas, and excited about her prospects — looking ahead, rather than back. Perhaps this optimism is why she finally prevailed, when so many others would have given up.

    Scott James is an Emmy-winning television journalist and novelist who lives in San Francisco.
  4. Eight


    The NY Times must be like the LA Times; Page after page of stories of MISERY!! Does misery sell papers? I can't stand misery stories, I can't stand miserable people either... I like USA Today far and away better, it serves my needs. They talk about great places to live and the newest cars.. I like my local paper, the lady that owns it is an animal rights person. The world could end and she would put a horse rescue story on the front page... Who gives a rat's ass if somebody is miserable? I like to take people that are rude and bullying to me and MAKE THEM MISERABLE if it's doable without too much time and effort... naughty me I suppose, but I don't want to read about every miserable person's personal and business misery.. besides I'm boycotting the Liberalshit MSM, if I look at it I might be subliminally influenced to buy something from one of their advertisers...
  5. 377OHMS


    The LA Times is suitable for placing on the floor for puppies to crap on or lining a birdcage and nothing more. I'm amazed that it is still in business.

    My family saw shaved-ice machines in Hawaii and tried to bring them to california in the 80s. We were going to put shops in up and down the entire coast but the health department, under influence from the dairy lobby (ice cream people) would not grant permits to operate shaved ice machines claiming they could not be properly cleaned.

    Today you see an occasional shaved-ice machine in California but they are unpermitted which you can get away with in 1 or 2 small stores but you can't open a chain that uses them.

    After that experience my family started making its money out-of-state and out of the country and simply living here without doing any local business.
  6. I agree with the premise that it does get tiring hearing about the misery, when in truth, we in the U.S. have it pretty darn good.

    I had a family member 'suffer' for 18 months just getting permits to build a home, with cash. Perhaps those in the capacity of building inspectors and the like need to prolong time frames just to keep up appearances that their jobs are vital, not sure about that.

    Not defending anyone here, but I would think that some of this could have been avoided with proper planning, and asking the right questions before securing a lease. I'm just saying.

  7. Albany should be encouraged by the success of his business, which serves as a neighborhood gathering place. The space at 227 Quail St., deep in the area unfortunately dubbed the "student ghetto," had been vacant and dilapidated for years.

    But in dealing with the city's bureaucracy, Pasquill didn't feel welcomed. He felt tormented.

    By Pasquill's estimate, he made two dozen separate trips to the code enforcement office just for plumbing, as he tried to understand why the city wouldn't sign off on the plan for a building that was once home to Hudson River Telephone Co. For months, he says, he couldn't get inspectors to put their demands in writing.

    "I told (them) at one point, 'Just tell me what you want,' " he said. "If you want two toilets on the ceiling, I'll do it."


    The city, he says, too often acted as though frequent delays didn't matter, as if no sense of urgency was required. But for a small business, time is money — and Pasquill didn't have much of either. By the time he got the OK to open, nine months after he went to the city with his plan, he had just $500 left in the bank.

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