The Jailing of Father O’Shea

Defrocked Monsignor Patrick O’Shea had been the pastor for many years at the Holy Name of Jesus Church in the Sunset and St. Cecelia’s in the Parkside District. The scourge of the altar boys, he was charged with sex crimes in 1995 by San Francisco District Attorney Arlo Smith, Terence Hallinan’s predecessor. The crimes were […]

Ferris Fain Comes Up Again

Hardly any subject is more than two degrees of separation removed from marijuana. This week Bruce Jenkins of the Chronicle picked an all-star team of baseball players from Oakland and proposed a toast to his second baseman. “The spirit of Oakland lived inside Joe Morgan,” Jenkins declared over Sinatra on the juke box at his […]

Supreme Hypocrisy

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s connection to the Hallinan saga is indirect and faint, but the AVA is a newspaper, above all, and the Supreme Court is now Action Central as Antonin Scalia’s protege ascends; so here’s some relevant background.   California voters legalized marijuana for medical use in November, 1996. In December ’96 secret meetings were held in […]

The Trial of Ken Hayes & Mike Foley

In May, 1999, two men who ran CHAMP, a cannabis dispensary in San Francisco’s Castro district —Ken Hayes, then 33, and Mike Foley, 34— were arrested in Petaluma, along with Hayes’s pregnant girlfriend, Cheryl Sequoia. They had rented a house with a barn on two acres in the former Egg Capital of the World, set […]

Liaison to the Pot Partisans

Over the Transom #1 (a sampler) Terence Hallinan’s pro-marijuana perspective led some growers from outside the city to contact the DA’s office seeking the green light for projects in San Francisco. Santa Rosa’s premier pot lawyer, Chris Andrian, wrote Terence on behalf of Paul Klopper and Alan Silverman, who were growing the herb in Guerneville […]

A Farm in the City

“My liaison to the medical marijuana community” is how District Attorney Terence Hallinan sometimes introduced me. “Public Information officer” was the job description, and I gave the City and County of San Francisco their money’s worth. I returned every phone call and answered every email, and not just from the media types and pot partisans. […]

Kayo v. DiFi

Trying to breathe life into the extinct mammoth Republicanus Liberalis, former Congressman Tom Campbell recently launched a start-up called the Common Sense Party. Campbell served five terms in the 1990s representing Silicon Valley. When he resigned in 2000 to run for the Senate against Dianne Feinstein, Kayo was keen to endorse him. I pointed out […]

Hallinan’s Overlooked Running Mate

Although our Hallinan saga was meant to follow rough chronological order, current events like the nomination of Kamala Harris keep triggering flashbacks. And speaking of Black women running for Vice-President, on Monday 9/7 the New York Times ran an obituary for Charlotta Bass, the newspaper publisher who ran for VP on the Progressive Party line in […]

Implementing Prop 215

I didn’t jump at District Attorney Terence Hallinan’s offer to be his press secretary. It would pay twice as much as my job at UCSF — $84,000 vs. $42,000 in 1999 — but editing a weekly at the medical center I was seven years away from a pension, and if I stayed there I would […]

The Progressive Mantle

OLD FOOTAGE: I’m stepping out of my small office in the Hall of Justice slipping a cell phone into the breast pocket of my jacket. Kamala sees me from about 60 feet away and hastens down the hall shaking her head in disapproval. “You shouldn’t do that,” she says. “My mother is a physician, a […]

Diminishing Kayo’s Legacy

In a career full of high-end failures, my failure back in 2000 to convince Terence “Kayo” Hallinan to trust Kamala Harris has to rank near the top. Then again, being seen as Hallinan’s ally might have cost her the historic opportunity now at hand.  The day before Joe Biden anointed Kamala Harris as his running […]

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