I find the shouting and handwringing about the Boudin recall heralding the “death of progressivism” interesting. The “conclusion” being reached by many appears more the result of wishing to confirm their pre-existing bias (e.g., about how to address crime) or capture more eyeballs than anything else.

Boudin only narrowly won election in the first place. That always creates the opportunity for a recall. Perhaps a progressive electorate decided what Boudin was trying to do was a bridge too far and executed a course correction. Whether you agree with it or not, the fact that progressives might have done so is a sign of strength, not weakness.

It’s rare for any Republican elected official to propose a course correction on anything. Except in private. And they’re generally quickly reversed (think Jan. 6, or what happens every time school children get slaughtered by madmen). In those rare exceptions where some Republican leader does propose one (think Liz Cheney), he or she instantly gets eaten alive by the Republican establishment.

Conservatism is fundamentally about making tomorrow look like yesterday. That doesn’t take much imagination (or even much intellectual effort). Trying to make things better is and always will be harder, because deciding what to pursue and how to pursue it are much more difficult than preserving the past.

Mark Olbert

San Carlos

The letter writer is the former mayor of San Carlos.

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(6) comments

Terence Y

Hey Mr. Olbert – you may want to send this letter to Chuck Schumer since Schumer was happy to block a school safety bill that was a no-brainer to pass. Since Schumer prefers making tomorrow look like yesterday and isn’t interested in trying to make things better, per your definition Schumer practices conservatism, along with all the Dems that supported Schumer’s intransigence.

Ray Fowler

Good morning, Mark

Recalls are the exception not the rule but when they happen, it’s usually a result of the failure of the office holder or failed policies. DA Bodin’s recall was discussed in the DJ comments section over the weekend. You spent time with an ad hominem against a reader who criticized DA Boudin in very harsh terms. I agree that criticism was more anecdotal than analytical but when I asked you “how would you explain that more than 60% of San Francisco residents who voted agreed to oust DA Boudin?” Crickets.

You claim, “Conservatism is fundamentally about making tomorrow look like yesterday.” Well, Mark, I would have to disagree with you. Let’s take a look at progressive control of our largest cities. I cannot take credit for the following comparison but when you look at inner cities beset with poverty you’ll find decay, violence, upward movement stifled, subsistence living, and despair. Those are the conditions found on plantations in the Democratic Party’s Old South. It kinda looks like yesterday. Woke progressives have set aside the tremendous achievements of the Civil Rights movement and they have replaced them with identity politics and divisiveness. They’re keeping racism alive. It kinda looks like yesterday.

Progressives keep pushing a socialist agenda. In your opinion, where has socialism worked in the past? It kinda looks like progressives are about making tomorrow look like yesterday’s failed socialism. Here’s where I might surprise you… DA Boudin’s recall was not a course correction. The situation in San Francisco was just uniquely so bad that even very liberal Democratic Party voters endorsed the recall. However, a course correction is coming… November 8.



Good morning. You offer some sensible observations in your comment, some I agree with and some I will have to think about. At least your reply is worth spending the time to read, contrary to another.

The part I really want to agree with and jump on the band wagon about is the last line. We can only hope the a course correction is coming November 8. Don’t get all excited, I am not saying get rid of the Democrats. I am saying that the future of the country depends on the Republicans taking back their old school values. Hopefully, IMO, the correction will be voters getting rid of the current circus acts in their party, those like MTG, Gaetz, Boerbert, Gohmert etc. and find someone with a pair and a spine to replace them.

Unfortunately this new version of the Republicans has even spread like a disease to the Last Frontier, Alaska. As I am sure you know by now, the wild wordsmith of Wasilla, Sarah Palin, is on the ballot for the special election up there.

Ray Fowler

Hey, buddy

Thanks for your constructive comments. I think we are sharing some optimism and that's a positive development. No, no, no...I'm not supporting anything like getting rid of Democrats... I have confidence in the genuineness and intentions of the majority of Democrats... but not the 12% who identify with the progressive wing of the party. Let's hope Democrats express their old school values on November 8.

Trump policies... but not always Trump the person... are popular with the flag and faith component of the Republican Party. They make up 23% of Republicans. I would say MTG, et al. no more speak for the Republican Party than AOC, et al. speak for Democrats. That being said, I agree with you in hoping Republicans bring their old school values to November 8.

The Last Frontier... I have heard it said that Sarah Palin is the Republican Party's Kamala Harris. Yeah, that might be the case. However, while I'm no expert, it seems they took different paths to achieve political prominence... but I could be wrong.

See you in the funny papers!



You 'had me' at ad hominem.

I hope your class you're gonna teach (rumor has it) at the Shores Library in the fall is not full yet.

PS: Did Bolanos lose? Will he retire in Oregon or Nevada?

Ray Fowler


Is the class roster full? I don't know... I don't know what course at the library you are referencing. I have not signed up to teach anything anywhere.

Did the incumbent lose? While the final results will not be released until July 7, the challenger seems to have an insurmountable lead at this point. I have no idea what the current Sheriff has planned. You should ask him... let me know what he says.

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