The San Francisco Experience

The San Francisco Experience

We are a "deep dive" news podcast, for Americans who get their news from the Internet. Our mission is to give the listener succinct, fact based analysis both non-ideological and independent from a California, Silicon Valley perspective. Your host Jim Herlihy is a published author: his novel “Deceit and Dirty Money” is available on line. He served as President of the SF Public Library Commission 1992 - 1996. While working in Latin America, he was a stringer for The Economist, The Times and the BBC. Jim serves as a director on two SF sister city boards : Bangalore, India and Cork, Ireland.... Show More

Episodes

February 25, 2021 37 min
The Biden Administration is seeking to revive negotiations with Iran on the 2015 Obama Administration deal. The Trump Administration abrogated the agreement in 2018. And since then Iran's foes in the Persian Gulf - Dubai, Bahrain and Qatar - have established diplomatic relations with Israel. Israel has said it would do anything to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons. Iran has sped up its nuclear fuel capability and is in bre...
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California voters are especially testy these days as we enter our 12 th month of Covid lockdown. Not only is the Governor threatened with Recall over his handling of the crisis, but the San Francisco District Attorney is too, for being soft on crime and hostile to police as well as  School Boards. San Francisco's failure to open public schools while private and parochial schools have been in session since the Fall of 2020 is es...

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February is Black History Month when we celebrate and acknowledge the many accomplishments of African Americans throughout the history of the United States. In today's episode, successful Venture Capitalist Jonathan Speed, and a US military historian by avocation, walks us through the sweeping experience of African American service men and women during World War II. The courage, perseverance and dedication of the 2.5 million Bl...

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The Medical profession has aggressively adopted the video call and the Zoom meeting during the Covid lockdown. Over 25 million video doctor visits have taken place in 2020. But as this digital health revolution got underway, seniors have often been left behind because of digital illiteracy, no access to broadband internet or not having a smartphone or computer. A recent TeleHealth Summit in San Francisco addressed these issues and ...

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Ambassador Ric Grenell served as US Ambassador to Germany from 2018 to 2020. Subsequently he served as Acting Director of National Intelligence in 2020, a cabinet level post. A favorite of Donald Trump for his blunt and forthright speaking style, Sean Hannity and Representative Matt Gaetz  were pushing him to declare for Governor in the likely California Recall Election. He was coy, interested,  but would not take the bait. In toda...

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The first week of February 2021 was not very good to the Governor of California. First, the Recall signature campaign was closing in on 1.4 million signatures with six weeks left before the deadline. Then two Republican candidates announced they would run against him in the Recall and a third one, an Independent was considering a run.  Finally the Recall campaign has raised $2.5 million. All that in the space of a week. But politic...

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February 5, 2021 37 min
Labyrinth of the Wind is the critically acclaimed debut novel of Madhav Misra, our guest in the Meet the Author series.  Madhav takes us back in time to the late 1970s when Teheran, Iran was an international city, awash in petrodollars, governed by the autocratic Shah whose rule vacillated between westernization and brutal police state repression. Against this complex backdrop, Madhav weaves a love story entwined with 1970s terrori...
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February 3, 2021 35 min

Labyrinth of the Wind is the critically acclaimed debut novel of Madhav Misra. Set in Teheran, Iran in the late 1970s as the Shah's regime is coming to an end and the fundamentalist Islamic Revolution of Ayatollah Khomeini is unfolding it is a complex story of a young expat's struggle to serve several masters. A fascinating look back to a Westernizing Iran awash in petrodollars and fabulous wealth but also poverty. And even...

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February 1, 2021 23 min

San Francisco has been picked on by the East Coast press for decades. Of late, they have criticized us for our homelessness mess, high cost of housing, City Hall Corruption - I agree with them on that score - and the recent tech exodus to Austin, Seattle and points East because of the high cost of living. They seem to think we live in a Film Noir Warp. But San Francisco always bounces back. In fact the mythical Phoenix, rising from...

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January 27, 2021 22 min
With the recall petition against Governor Gavin Newsom having reached 1,200,000 signatures and only 300,000 more valid signatures of California voters necessary to qualify it for the ballot could California be ready for another celebrity Governor ? After all Arnold Schwarzenegger swept in to the 2003 recall election to replace Gray Davis. And even Ronald Reagan was chosen by Californians to lead the state with no elective office ex...
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January 22, 2021 18 min

Joseph R. Biden Jr. was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on January 20, 2021.  His predecessor Donald Trump did not attend the ceremony, but he left a letter of support for the incoming President in the Oval Office. Biden's 21 minute inaugural address spoke of unity and toning down political rhetoric. While new American Presidents enjoy a honeymoon with the voters, his challenge will be to forge links to the ...

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As awful as 2020 has been been, 1968 was even more momentous with political assassinations, the Viet Nam War, the Prague Spring and Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia as well as major civil unrest throughout America. Amidst all these tectonic changes, a major political realignment occurred with segregationist  George Wallace winning four dependably Democrat states. And we even had a mini-Pandemic, the Hong Kong flu. 2020 also witnes...

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The 17 mile trail that crosses San Francisco from the Bay in the South East corner of the City to Land's End in its' North West Corner,  cuts right through the heart of our 49 square miles of natural beauty.  It traverses urban gardens, solid neighborhoods, the Presidio, Golden Gate Park and leads you to the dramatic cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The brainchild of Bob Siegel a one time Peace Corps volunteer and coll...

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January 13, 2021 24 min

The Siege of the US Capitol one week ago illustrated how US politics have become militarized under Donald Trump. Militias and their members were a visible presence at the infamous rally beforehand and at the storming of the Capitol. The Million Militia March scheduled for Inauguration Day January 20 will be met by 3000 National Guard troops if it turns violent.  A 7 foot high unscaleable fence now surrounds the Capitol. And Trump f...

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Air India initiated a new nonstop flight from San Francisco to Bangalore - 17 hours nonstop - over the North Pole. The crew was all female, Captain, First Officer, Navigator. The new flight will link San Francisco's Silicon Valley and India's Technology powerhouse Bangalore which are already Sister Cities. And the 2.7 million Indian immigrants to the United States are very successful. But China's clashes with the Indian...

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The 25th Amendment permits the Vice President and a majority of the cabinet to declare a President unable to discharge the duties and powers of his office and replace him. Should Vice President Pence and the cabinet remove President Trump in the last 13 days of his term which expires January 20, 2021 ? 

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January 7, 2021 22 min

The Covid 19 Pandemic was a Black Swan event unleashed on the world in early 2020. A Black Swan event is an extreme outlier occurrence with a huge impact which is only explainable after the fact.  Do any Black Swans lurk in our future for 2021 ? By nature they are unpredictable and unknowable beforehand, but we will attempt to predict some areas that could produce  black swans in the next twelve months.

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DNA genealogical testing is dominated by Ancestry.com and 23 and Me. MIT's Technology Review estimates that 26 million such test kits have been sold by these two companies. While their growth has been explosive, privacy concerns are growing. The sale of genetic data to 3rd parties is especially sensitive. And the open source genealogy website GEDMatch has even fewer privacy safeguards than the Direct To Customer testers.  Is yo...

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In 2019 87,00 Californians relocated to Texas. And in 2020 we lost several iconic Bay Area tech companies to the Lone Star state such as Oracle, Hewlett Packard and Palantir. Podcast celebrity Joe Rogan moved to Austin and Tesla founder Elon Musk did likewise. The cost of living in Houston is 65% lower than San Francisco while salaries are 17% less.  Can California stem the flow of this exodus ?

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December 28, 2020 20 min

When Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on January 20, 2021 he will become the 23rd President in history to have Irish roots. 50% of our Presidents have an ancestral link to Ireland - that's quite a high concentration and the story behind it is even more fascinating.  Since 1945, 9 of the 13 Presidents have Irish roots along with 35 million fellow Americans. Talk about punching above your weight fo...

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