"The issue before you is not to preserve and rehabilitate a work of marginal
importance; it is to assure the protection and survival of a work of great
"Anthea Hartig, Ph.d, Chairperson, State Historical Resources Commission
Department of Parks and Recreation, Sacramento, California
"When I saw the Jackling house and what Jobs' neglect had done to it, it
brought tears to my eyes... I would be very happy to join and support your
I, too, believe you have a very strong case to stop this demolition. I had
feared that no one would have the guts and money to go up against Steve
Jobs. Thank you so much."
"Barbara Wood, Woodside Resident
Background on our group and court case - Click Here
We'd always thought that preservation was somehow anti-modernist but in fact it is a pivotal part of modernity.
-Rem Koolhaas, interviewed in the FT, January 2011
Jackling House February 2011
• Steve Jobs has torn down the Jackling House because the local Council, with only the Mayor daring to resist, ignored facts and evidence showing the House clearly should be saved and could be saved.
• Jobs has demolished because brains wealth power and some Buddhism don't always bring wisdom.
• Jobs has demolished even though a couple owning land nearby committed to pay to relocate and restore it, committed to moving it from his land in less time than he took to get it hauled off to landfill, and he's demolished even though the couple's project was reviewed and approved by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
• Jobs tears down the house by choice, as his attorney informed the couple in an email that Jobs would make no "contribution" although the public statement was he would make a "reasonable contribution" to relocation, and this couple had the land and means to get it done. Public statements aside, no cooperation.
• Jobs pushed ahead with demo' even though the Court last year offered to bring in a Mediator, and so we must ask, who was afraid that a Court-appointed Mediator would broker a deal on this no-brainer of ridding Jobs of his historic House and letting others save it, opening it once a year to the public, to scholars and admirers of the architect?
• Jobs kept losing in Court, but finally got a demolition approval because local councils have the power to ignore independent evidence and may choose to go along with much less credible evidence, in legal terms this is called "discretion." As our attorney Doug Carstens put it, "Like legislators who ignore the overwhelming evidence of climate change and make policy based on denial evidence paid for by special interests."
• Jobs' attorney got the local Council to accept that destroying the house was Jobs' only financially feasible option ! It is worth noting the Council was advised by an attorney whose firm has working ties with Pixar! In the Jackling case the Town showed as much integrity as Clarence Thomas ruling on "Citizens United" while his wife gets paid by the likes of the Koch Brothers.
• So Jobs tears down because the local council swallowed "evidence" from hired consultants inflating costs of preservation, showing the most lavish gold-leafing of the Jackling house plus an extravagant new basement addition and Versailles-like amenities, would cost Jobs more than building a 1-story house using the firm he uses for all his stores. Duh.
But preservationists never sued to get him to pay to restore it himself - only that he let someone else do it. Jobs' costly five-year defense bill paid for contortions proving that NOT preserving would cost him less than preserving. His lawyer and the Council evaded all questions on the MUCH lower cost of allowing others to save off-site. Jobs spent five years appealing our wins in court, then money on consultants trying to prove "financial infeasibility", and now money on demolition. Had Jobs instructed his lawyer back in 2005 to cooperate with the Berger brothers, or later with the Woodside couple, he'd have built his new house, and not forced the town to accept a stupid result.
•Jobs pushed ahead with demo' even though the #1 environmental history book in the country shows "Daniel Jackling was the man who wired America" and thus Jobs' direct indebtedness to Jackling, compared in the book to Henry Ford and Thomas Edison.
• Jobs does demolition because brains billions and some Buddhism don't buy wisdom or even basic respect for others.
We wish him better health. We wish him years ahead to undo some of the ruthlessness, as is also urged by over 20 environmental groups in China who recently published "The other side of Apple" and to maybe grudgingly join the list of titans and billionaires who become civic later in life.
HELP WITH A TAX DEDUCTIBLE DONATION TO THE NATIONAL TRUST
Donations are tax-deductible!
National Trust for Historic Preservation
The Hearst Building, 5 Third Street, Suite 707
San Francisco, CA 94103
Specify "for the Jackling house."