SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — In the world capital of social media, where suspected felon and State Senator Leland Yee governs a district incorporating offices of Twitter and satellite offices of Facebook, it’s no surprise that social media is exploding with the #LelandYee discussion, adding nuance and depth to an already riveting plot line.

JOIN THE LIVE WEBCAST AND TWITTER #YeeChat: 12 p.m. Pacific, Friday, March 28th with KCBS Radio and KPIX TV

The 137-page federal affidavit describing undercover agents’ years-long infiltration of an alleged Chinatown crime syndicate, weaving a tale of intrigue snaring the venerable politician, the notorious and supposedly reformed gang leader Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow, political operative Keith Jackson, and even NFL sports agent wunderkind Marlon Sullivan reads like an implausible spy novel. With such astonishing detail and allegations as their platform, armchair analysts are having a field day.

Perhaps the most sage of analysts is West Sacramento’s mayor Christopher Cabaldon, an incredibly successful politician and social media darling. His Facebook post late Thursday night parses out the numbers in a revealing twist of what a life is worth. Cabaldon, an expert satirist, also adds his sardonic twist on the statistics:

Some of the numbers in the FBI’s Shrimp Boy affidavit seemed disproportionate, so I did some totally inappropriate analysis…

Affidavit algebra:

-Price for one murder-for-hire = $25,000

-Price for one Senate proclamation = $6,800

One murder = 3.67 Senate proclamations

We cannot know from the affidavit whether the 3.67 ratio applies to Assembly proclamations and/or whether the commutative property holds. I do know that I personally have a total of 3 Senate and Assembly proclamations, though.

Now, onto affidavit economics:

-Value of human life ≈ $50,000 to $141,000 (several US federal agencies place the estimate in the $6-8 million range)

-Price for one murder-for-hire: $25,000

So at equilibrium with perfect/symmetric information and zero transaction costs, there should be no murder-for-hire (at least in San Francisco where these prices are observed) as there is always a better deal to be made since the mark should be willing to pay at least $25,001 not to be murdered.

Finally, affidavit sociology:

-Number of murders-for-hire that the median San Franciscan can buy: 3

-Number of murders-for-hire than the median Google employee can buy: 5.4

Murder inequality index: 55%

This, of course, assumes no other spending. EPI estimates that it costs just over $80,000 per year to live in San Francisco. That is more than the median income, so murder-for-hire is out of reach for most San Franciscans, while Google bus riders can afford two murders per year.

SOURCE: Christopher Cabaldon’s Facebook Page

KCBS’s own political observer Doug Sovern adds perspective to Yee’s record on Twitter:

A big name in political insider circles is Dan Schnur, the current (but on leave) director of USC’s Unruh Institute of Politics, former UC Berkeley professor, and political consultant to several Republican governors. He happens to be running as an independent for Secretary of State against the now-defunct Yee campaign, and he Tweets about how the scandal could hurt both parties.

The most cutting Tweets, however, may be those pointing out the hypocrisy and irony of Yee’s alleged double-life as a gun control advocate and gun runner. Here’s one from San Francisco Chronicle pop culture critic, Peter Hartlaub:


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s