"Viewing San Francisco as a liberal city, or even the most liberal city, misses the point. By and large, every big city is now liberal. San Francisco's obsessions are municipal—and how someone behaves regarding a quality-of-life concern does not correlate with his or her position on reproductive rights or gun control. In this way, San Francisco's version of conservatives are not fiscally conservative: It's moderates who are pushing for soda taxes, set-asides for parks, and funding for street trees. Turning semantics on its ear, moderates are often the ones looking forward, toward accommodating hypothetical future San Francisco residents and businesses (perhaps at the expense of the city's current ones), while progressives are focused on preserving the status of those current residents and businesses (perhaps at the expense of hypothetical future ones). Maybe the best way to define 'progressives' and 'moderates' is not based on principles but on who forms their coalitions and funds their campaigns; as Deep Throat instructed, 'Follow the money.'"
Joe Eskenazi in San Francisco assesses the City's politics.