Growing up, my favourite comics writer was Alan Moore. But I learned just as much, if not more, from studying Eddie Campbell, Philippe Druillet, Bryan Talbot, Glenn Dakin, Carol Swain, Will Eisner and a hundred other people.
Read comics. All comics. And then cut them open to steal their power."
There was a period when San Francisco first created these exclusive social clubs. There was the Bohemian Club and the Pacific Union Club, and they came into being at the turn of the last century, maybe a little bit before, but a time when there was a generation of great wealth. Now along comes the Battery Club. You can see on a Friday night at the Battery Club the Uber black cars lined up around the block. You can see it in the absurd real estate valuations that are transforming San Francisco. I believe the median cost of a one‑bedroom apartment is over $3000 right now, the median rental cost in the city is over $4000. Real estate prices have gone up pretty continuously since the mid-1990s. They've plateaued occasionally, but now it's amongst the most expensive places in the world to live.
Looking out the windows from my office over south of Market, I can see nine construction cranes. What's being built are banks. This is this kind of wealth that emerges in the developed world now. It's happening in New York, it's happening in London, it's happening in San Francisco, where money that needs to flee from regions of the world that are financially insecure will come and basically invest in a condominium. There are these stacks of condominiums, and you drive past these buildings at night, and there are no lights on. The owners don't need to rent them through VRBO or AirBnB, they just leave them empty. It deforms the city. The capital flows in, in many ways. I can't tell you how many times I've said signs of a bubble top, because you see something that's obviously irrational.
The transportation situation in Silicon Valley is quite amazing right now. You have this crumbling public infrastructure, and now the Internet has made it possible to essentially skim the cream. That's what we're seeing right now. It's now clear to me that the Internet enabled private transportation services that are springing up, ranging from Uber and Lift and SideCar to these premium bus services like LEAP in San Francisco, which will take you in a small bus with Wi-Fi and a fancy seat from the marina to downtown.
There are other systems that are appearing around the country, in places like Boston and Washington. There's a company called Bridj, which has basically a small bus-style transportation system that routes itself based on people calling in. So it's not Uber getting just you, it's a bus that changes its route based on who's calling in. It's kind of an efficient transportation system.
I worry that we'll have two classes of transportation: We'll have the elites, who'll drive in Uber blacks, and we'll have the poor, who wait longer and longer for the public buses that never come because the public system has basically become even more underfunded than it already was. That's still working itself out.”
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