Why the anti-leaks bill is so scary

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If a bill that is now before the US Senate were in place in 2005, none of us would know about the CIA's secret offshore prisons. There's a lot of other secret stuff that never would have made it into print, too.Read more »

Next level: this weekend's SF Youth Arts Summit takes SOMArts

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San Francisco’s next great designer, sculptor, or filmmaker could possibly be in attendance this Sat/8 at the second annual San Francisco Youth Arts Summit taking place at SOMArts Cultural Center.Read more »

Did SF prosecutors subpoena protesters' account information from Twitter?

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UPDATED A group calling itself the Anti-Colonial Anti-Capitalist 19 (ACAC19), representing 19 demonstrators who were arrested Oct. 6 in downtown San Francisco during a Columbus Day protest that devolved into a violent clash with police officers, says the Twitter account information of two protesters has been subpoenaed by local police or prosecutors.Read more »

Honk if you love movies! New releases and rep programs

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If this week's openings seem a little thin, it's because all of the studios are hoping to cash in on the holiday moviegoing spirit, releasing their films next week (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey) or, more likely, the week after (Django Unchained, Les Misérables, This is 40, The Impossible, Jack Reacher, etc.) 'Tis the season, and all that.

But that doesn't mean you should ignore Friday's releases (check out my feature on custody drama In the Family), or miss out on two rep programs Dennis Harvey covers in this week's issue: retro porn-musical showcase "Honk If You're Horny" at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, and a tribute to French comedian Pierre Étaix at the Smith Rafael Film Center.

Plus, more short takes below, including Harvey's preview of on the Vortex Room's weekly (and timely!) apocalypse series. Because if the world ends December 21, you won't get to see any of those Christmas releases anyway. Tres désolé, Hugh!

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Nite Trax: Tormenta Tropical whips up 5 years of cumbia madness

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Five years ago the local nightlife scene was broadening its scope in a multitude of awe-inspiring musical directions, from contemporary Afrobeat and baile funk to experimental global indie. In that atmosphere of diverse ferment, a couple of super-talented kids, recently returned from Argentina, started Tormenta Tropical (along with label Bersa Discos), a monthly at the Elbo Room dedicated to the electronic spin many Latin American artists were putting on the traditional cumbia sound.

The sound centered around club Zizek in Buenos Aires and its ZZK label -- but it also found a home, strangely enough, in the tropical-hungry underground clubs of Montreal. Tormenta Tropical provided a third leg of the nu-cumbia triangle, and has been known ever since as a go-to for cutting edge global bass and electro-Latin tracks. There were also a lot of glowing Virgin Marys on the DJ booth and a taco truck parked outside. 

This Saturday, oro11 and Shawn Reynaldo (formerly Disco Shawn), celebrate the fifth anniversary of the club, and it's gonna be a humdinger, chicas.

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Could we really fix Prop. 13?

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Is it really possible? Could California be on the path to repair the damage of Prop. 13? Would Jerry go along?

You wouldn't think so -- it's been talked about for so long and so little has happened. But it's an all new year in Sacramento, and the era of Republican dominancy-by-minority is over (in fact, the era when Republicans will have any role at all in state government is pretty much over), and already, some changes are in the works.

Assemblymember Tom Ammiano notes:Read more »

Live Shots: Death Grips at Slim's

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When I first saw Sacramento's Death Grips — about a year or so ago at 1015 Folsom — they had to work especially hard. The room was half full and Stefan Burnett made up the difference, jumping down into the crowd and taunting it into action. The intervening time before a repeat performance was longer than expected (Death Grips suddenly canceled their last scheduled tour to finish their second album of the year) and at Slim's Monday the crowd seemed prewound, eager to see the sold-out show, jockeying for position near the front, and admiring freshly purchased t-shirts showcasing the attention-baiting cover art for No Love Deep Web. Read more »

San Francisco's slippery slope is chafing

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By Nato Green

This week, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed a ban on public nudity on a party line vote. By “party line,” I mean the Supes voting against nudity are the ones who never go to parties with lines of coke or conga lines. I'm not saying every single one of the progressive supervisors could be found in the naked suntan lotion massage yurt at Burning Man, just that it's conceivable. Read more »

No surprise: The Chron hates Ammiano's homeless bill

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Why should I be surprised? Assemblymember Tom Ammiano tried to introduce a bill providing some basic human rights for homeless people, and the Chron lashes out with a nasty editorial that misses the entire point.Read more »

Sorry, Chuck -- HANC eviction hasn't happened

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The eviction of the Haight Asbury Neighborhood Council’s recycling center, which critics of the center said was scheduled to take place Dec. 5, hasn’t happened – and it’s entirely possible that the center could keep operating for several more weeks.Read more »