Whistleblower hotline: (213) 785-6098

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Measure R Dodges Another Bullet

In case you don't know, yesterday the Court of Appeals decided to wait until AFTER the election to rule on whether Measure R is unconstitutional.

Though I'm not wild about the approach, it's actually pretty normal for a judicial proceeding. The logic is as follows:

If the voters reject Measure R, then the Court need not decide whether it was legal.

If instead the Court of Appeals removed Measure R from the ballot, and the Supeme Court found later that Measure R was actually proper, then the voters would have been deprived of the opportunity to vote on it, thereby either necessitating an expensive special election, or precluding voters from extending the term limits of those Clowncil Members coming up for re-election in March 2007.

Personally, I would have preferred that the Court rule on the merits. Having seen Judge O'Brien in action myself -- I tried a case before him -- I'm confident he analyzed the issue correctly and reached the right result.

Anyhow, please do go and vote "no" on Measure R and Measure H.


ZD Meets The Mayor (And Takes Great Cell Phone Pic) at "Million Trees LA" Kick-off

(Tom Lebonge Announcer Voice): "Today, is TRULY a great day for the City of Los Angeles..."

Because the City kicked off the "Million Trees LA" project in Jose Huizar's 14th District's, Hazard Park.

And I must say, it's a real shame that USC is trying to take the park away from the people of the community, because what a haven it is, right in the heart of a major City.

Besides Zuma Dogg, The Mayor, Jose, Eric Garcetti and all the major TV stations; Julia Louis Dreyfuss was there (and MAN, she looked even hotter in person), Angelica Houston (also, soooooo fine), that good looking latino actor with the goatee from "Desparate Housewives", some other hot latina actreess alot of the cameramen wanted to interview, and; Ed Beagley Jr., who I alerted that City Council wants to impose a moritorium on the Medical Marijuana dispensaries in the City of Los
Angeles, and that's all he needed to hear, to kill the good mood of the "Million Trees LA" event on his way out...yeah, yeah!

The Mayor gave a great entertaining, inspiring and humourous speech that even charmed the socks off of Zuma Dogg. Damn it! That's the problem people...the guys so charismatic and charming your average sucker consituent doesn't stand a chance against his charm, and they would never believe the greediness and corruption that goes on in Big City politics. And let's face it, the next Governor race will be
between Gavin Newsome and Mayor V. (if he doesn't get picked up for a VP ticket first), and Newsome doesn't stand a chance, cause you can't win without L.A. (just ask Arnold), so were basically looking at the next Govenor of California.

So all we can hope, is that the people can be a true checks and balance system that shadiness and corruption has basically eliminated out of actual government. AND, the fact that the only way The Mayor will be allowed to move up the ladder, by the voters, is if he quickly recovers from a shakey first year, and burns some rubber and do some good things for this City.

So they planted some trees, everyone took home a tree; The Mayor greeted and took pictures with all the kids and parents in attendance (at least a couple hundred), and for that one moment on a Saturday afternoon, alot of people (especially kids) were really inspired and activated and may carry on in community participation beyond the photo opportunity.

Then after the dust was setteling, and he was walking away from the event; with the crowd still following (and the guy didn't deny ANYONE a picture, even as he was trying, very unsuccesully to leave), ZD moved in and said, "Hey Mayor, I know I've been rough, but I wanna start mentioning some of the good things happening in the City that people need to get involved in, so I wanted to show up today for this one...cause only a fool only sees the bad in everything."

And Mayor V., amazingly turned away in the middle of the photo opportunity, possibly risking a bad angle to say, "Thank You!"

Cause this October 4th is the six month anniversary of Big ZD vs CC and Mayor V., and although Ebert and Roper could always do a full show of all "thumbs down" movies, people also like to see some "thumbs up" movies, otherwise they would never go to the movies.

So similarly, I PROMISE you it will still be just as much "thumbs down" reviews by ZD, but the commmunity really does need more charitable contributors, volunteers, non-profit community programs and whoever else to start trying to stand up and fight for the best interests of the City. And the only way to do that, is to highlight
some of these programs and events in L.A., so on Mayor Sam, TV 35, and KABC (and KFI sometimes), I'll be bringing attention to those things to, so you can get involved if you want to.

BUT DON'T WORRY, I'm not gonna let the opportunity pass to say, "NO on R", "No on H", Stop abusing the Special Event Fee Waiver, Mayor V. BETTER have good intentions for LAUSD in addition to the development money (hey bro, whatever you gotta do to move the City forward, as long as you don't overlook the kids/future), Start enforcing Tenant Right's as laid out by Planning and Land Use Committee, and damn
it...lay off the Eminant Domain abuse, as well. And go to www.MillionTreesLA.org and register for a tree...we got a million of these things to plant/unload, and it's supposed to be good for the environment and ends up saving money and all that good stuff, so tell some people about it and get one yourself.

But remember, all your information will be used to help get you to register to vote in upcoming elections, which is fine by ZD, as long as you are aware of it, and try and educate yourself as to what's up with the issues. And more importantly...look for the Z.D./Mayor V. Tee, coming soon. Yeah, yeah!


Mr. Mayor, Don't Pee On My Leg And Tell Me It's Raining

"Don't Pee On My Leg And Tell Me It's Raining" is the title of a book by Judge Judy, but it would make a fitting battle cry for L.A.'s taxpayers.

Today's case in point is reported in the L.A. Times. Mayor Villaraigosa, Councilmen Weiss Zine and Huizar, and assorted staff members are going on an all-expense paid -- by you -- 16-day tour to China, South Korea and Japan.

That's right, travelling to Asia right now is the highest and best use of their time, as opposed to doing anything here in the city whose taxpayers pay their salary. Public funds spent on this rip-off: $500,000 -- not including their salary, of course. Repeat: the trip is costing $500,000.

That's the "pee on my leg" part. Here comes the "and tell me it's raining" part, namely, the "reasons" we're supposed to believe this trip will serve the public interest:

1. Reassure Airlines.
Villaraigosa "will try to reassure Asian air carriers that Los Angeles International Airport will be ready to accommodate the A-380 super jumbo jet." Well thank God he has the good sense to do that! After all, we can't have Asian air carriers worrying about whether they can land their giant new French airplanes at LAX on time!

Plus, to reassure an Asian air carrier, you can't just pick up a phone or send pictures of your construction progress. Heck, no. Only a batallion of civil servants and elected officials can take care of a crisis like that.

Mr. Mayor, the Asian airline that placed the first order for the A-380, and that will take the first delivery, is Singapore airlines, which is scheduled to take delivery in December. But Singapore isn't even on your itinerary. (What's that I smell? Could it be urine?) China Southern airline is number 31 on the list to take delivery, around 2009, and Korean Air is number 35.

Maybe the next time you make up a story to justify an all-expense paid vacation, you could have your public relations team fabricate a better lie. I'm sure your Brain Trust can justify a trip to Paris, because Air France has also ordered the plane.

2. Chinese Tourism.
"Villaraigosa will . . . open a tourism office in Beijing." Well, that's clearly a vital use of the time of the Mayor of the second-largest city in America. After all, isn't that how all of us decide where to go on vacation? You go to the place whose mayor opens an office. You don't base your decision on, say, climate, museums, attractions, etc. Let's just be glad we have a mayor who was smart enough not to send, say, a movie star to do this. Heck, no one in China would turn out to see a movie star!

Oh, and another thing: how many people are actually allowed to leave China each year to go on vacation, and how much money do they spend on those vacations? I'm guessing the correct answers are "not many" and "not much."

But whatever the numbers, Mr. Mayor, how about you leave the tourism industry to, say, the tourism industry, and you could do something else, like, say, administer our City's many departments, and enforce a few of our laws?

3. Loans for Developers.
"Villaraigosa will . . . attempt to secure banking commitments for new real estate developments in downtown and Koreatown." Perhaps that is why he "will be accompanied by a delegation of investment bankers [e.g.,, Goldman Sachs, American Express, Bear Stearns], real estate executives . . . and attorneys from some of the city's most influential law firms [e.g., Latham & Watkins]."

Excuse me, Mr. Mayor, but since the multi-millionaires working in those industries already have an army of highly paid professionals representing them, perhaps you could spend your time more productively staying home and doing something on behalf of people less able to protect their own interests -- like the children who are routinely gunned down in our city? Maybe the rich don't need quite so much of your time as, say, the poor? Or the middle class taxpayers straining under the ever-increasing weight of taxes and bonds?

Nor should we give the Clowncilmen a pass on this boondoggle. Their claim that they need 12 years rather than 8 to accomplish anything loses all credibility when they squander our hard-earned tax dollars like this.

Pardon my French, but it's time for L.A.'s voters to stop being peed on, and start being pissed off.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Historic Preservation Alliance Says "No" To Special Treatment For Meurelo

Should millionaire developers who contribute to career politicians get preferential treatment when they illegally destroy buildings without permits?

As one of my law school professors said, "to ask that question is to answer it."

The Historic Preservation Overlay Zone (HPOZ) Alliance sent a letter opposing special treatment for bazillionaire developer Meruelo, a massive contributor to Mayor Villaraigosa and other career politicians in this city. (I covered this in an earlier essay: Special Treatment For Special Interests.) Here is the text of the HPOZ Alliance etter:

September 29, 2006

Board of Commissioners
Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety
201 N. Figueroa Street,10th Floor
Los Angeles, California 90012

RE: Meruelo Maddux Properties penalties

Dear Commissioners:

We in the Historic Preservation community-now numbering tens of thousands of Los Angelenos-are strongly opposed to any lessening of penalties, now in place, for the tearing down of four old industrial buildings near Union Station without obtaining demolition permits.

The whole point of creating the so-called "scorched earth" penalties for un-permitted demolition of historic buildings was to make it so painful that nobody would violate this law.

If the Board eases the penalty in this case, it must be with the understanding that more un-permitted demolitions of historic structures will surely take place.

Your decision will be an important part of your legacy to our city.

Please vote for how you want to be remembered.

Sincerely yours,
Murray Burns
Chair HPOZ Alliance

Mayor Sam's Hotsheet for Friday

We're a few days into our moderated comment status and things seem to be going okay. The terrorists who brought about this situation have been surprisingly quiet and we're getting some really good comments. The downside is that comments may take a few hours to get up which has led to a drop in overall comments. In case anyone was wondering, even though comments are moderated, we have no idea who you are, so if the moderation feature is holding you back because you fear losing your anonymity, let not your heart be troubled.

About 1,500 protesters marched along Century Boulevard during the afternoon rush hour Thursday, tying up traffic near LAX as part of a push for higher wages and improved benefits for airport-area hotel workers. This major act of civil disobedience was endorsed by our city government and arrangments were made to avoid criminal prosecution of anyone who ran afoul of the law. There was a time in this city when government looked out for the greater good, but now its all about special interests. See related commentary by David Hernandez.

Mayor Villaraigosa will endorse Proposition 86 Friday, which would raise taxes on tobacco to fund health care programs.

At his blog, LA Animal Services General Manager Ed Boks talks about the Jewish ritual of "kapparot," in which a chicken is sacrificed prior to Yom Kippur. Boks points out that most mainstream Judaism does not endorse this practice, and that is a violation of local animal cruelty laws.

Martini Republic reports that Proposition H is having trouble raising cash for the billion dollar housing bond boondoggle. It just seems that the special interests aren't coughing up dough for the campaign. With Zuma Dogg stirring up some local opposition to the measure, there's a chance this trainwreck may not come to pass.

Archie Bunker's favorite local politician - Controller Laura Chick - is once again slapping around the CRA. Read about it at LA Voice.

The Last Days of Eric Garcetti?

The buzz has been around for several days that Eric Garcetti may be on the outs as Council president. The jockeying to replace has begun and we've heard some chatter that the front runner could be 10th District Councilman Herb Wesson. Other possibilities include President Pro Tem Wendy Greuel and Assistant President Pro Tem Jan Perry (Don Garza's choice). What do the rest of you think?

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Sancturay City Lawlesness

By David Hernandez

Los Angeles the flagship Sanctuary City in the United States becomes a co-conspirator in the blatant criminal activity taking place in the streets today.

Today's planned and orchestrated law breaking will be another wake up call to those Angelinos who believe in the rule of law.

Four hundred individuals are scheduled to be arrested today for act of civil disobedience or breaking the law. The Los Angeles Police Department is already aware of the act and the identity of the individuals who will be committing the crimes. The organizers of the mass lawlessness have all been identified. All the components needed to prosecute a criminal conspiracy are in place.

But why won't the conspiracy be prosecuted?

It is because Los Angeles has been over run and is now in the hands of those who pick and choose which laws will be enforced. It will only be laws which will further their agendas and support their special interest.

The first law which is ignored is illegal immigration. Our local politicians dismiss it as a federal issue but at the same time pass and maintain procedures which reward those who break federal law.

In the name of compassion, these local Officials rebel against the actions of the federal Government and encourage civil disobedience and slander federal officials by calling them criminals and racists.

At every level of local government we have seen demonstrations of laws, local, state and federal being not only ignored but flagrantly abused.

Today will be a good history lesson to Americans across the nation.

When you control local government, you can appoint the Police Commission. You can hire or fire the Police Chief. You can dictate which laws the police can enforce. And yes you can engage the police as co-conspirators in a criminal conspiracy.

Ballots not bullets is an old belief which is being used today by those who are attempting to take control of the southwest. I might add they are doing a good job of it.

So think about that today when you witness the acts of lawlessness and see our police department on the sidelines or participating in the street theater as choreographed by the conspirators of today demonstration.

By the way it was Adolf Hitler who coined the phrase ballots not bullets.

Time has come for you to act and end the Sanctuary City status of Los Angeles. I hope you will join me as we move forward to Reclaim LA.

Today I will be joining the groups protesting this lawlesness and will begin a campaign to remove the Sanctuary status from Los Angeles.

P.S. Does the current number of individuals breaking federal law factor into the current crime level of Los Angeles?

Meet Mayor Antonio Villagrossa This Saturday at Hazard Park (CD14) for "Million Trees LA" Project

Meet Superior Court Judge Mary Lou Villar's brother, Mayor of Los Angeles, Antonio Villagrossa this Saturday at 12 noon for the kick off of the "Million Trees LA" initiative. It will be at Hazard Park in CD 14/East LA.

The Mayor will be handing out the first 200 (five gallon) trees for people to take home and be responsible for planting and watering. So although, you may have thought the City was going to plant a million trees, actually, it will be up to a million people in Los Angeles to pick up a tree themself, and be on an "honor system" to plant, water and nuture. So out of four million people in the City, only a million of them (25% of LA residents) have to take it upon themselves to make this project a success. (I guess that's why it's called an "initiative".)

But seriously...if nothing else, if you live in the area of Hazard Park (especially if you have kids), this actually does sounds like a fun, civic event for the community AND a chance to meet the next President of The United States...our very own, Mayor V.

Then, only 999,800 more trees to hand out (assuming 200 people even show up).

ZD's "Special Event" (Fee Waiver) of the Week, y'all...

Please make sure to attend the Jules Verne Film Festival brought to you by The Men's Warehouse. Tickets on sale now at Ticketmaster for this "special event" that will set you back up to $100. I hope we get our money's worth, because Parks/LeBonge put in for one of those "Special Event Fee Waivers" that means the City of Los Angeles will be paying for this event that is supposed to be used ONLY for community events open to the public in the interest of the community. Here are the details on this wonderful community event:

Friday, October 6, 2006, 8 pm
665, Jefferson Blvd - 90007, Los Angeles, CA

Platinium VIP (Central Seats - Rows 2 to 11): $100
VIP (Rows 12 to 45): $40

Libertarian Party of California (LA City Region) Says "NO" on R & H

Although ZD has not declared a politcal party affiliation yet, it looks like the Libertarian Party of California (Region 64/LA City) liked my campaign speech on Proposition R (City Council Term Extentions/Lifetime Health Care Benefits) and Proposition H ($1 Billion Bond) because they voted to take a "NO" position on both measures last night, and that's gonna be the position they take in November.

So, go ahead and laugh and make your jokes about the party, but ZD just made a nice little dent (if not a big one) by taking his "Public Comment" LIVE to the people, and they agreed...No on R, No on H.

Which political party in what district will I be speaking at next? Find out this weekend...yeah, yeah!


Wednesday, September 27, 2006

What to Do with “Killer” King Hospital?

By Jennifer Solis
As a pre-med student, I shouldn’t repeat such aspersions about an institution in which I might someday consider for enrollment or residency, but as a taxpayer, I can’t help but feel that KDMC has long passed the point of no return as a viable medical facility.

Let’s put the recent federal evaluation in teaching terms: they not only got an advance copy of the test, but were given the answer key, and a multitude of coaches to make sure they copied it down right. A failure under these conditions would lead an academic to conclude that the student better take up manual labor as a career.

The millions of dollars paid to Navigant, one of only two companies that perform hospital management consulting, could not turn around three decades of a culture of incompetence. Despite getting rid of a large number of staff, from administrators to scrubs, the company was unable to help the hospital to pass 15 inspections in the past two years.The last inspection was the final exam – and King failed 9 of the 23 categories, including nursing, pharmacy, governing staff, as well as infection control, surgical services, rehabilitation, oversight – the list goes on.

An interesting statistic is that about 98-percent of South Central mothers go elsewhere than King to give birth – they vote with their feet. The hospital is averaging about $5-million in annual payouts for medical malpractice since 2000. More than half the current nursing staff is temporary, or “floaters.” Most hospitals keep this percentage to no more than 20-percent, in order to provide acceptable patient care.

Navigant told the county when it took over interim management, that it had dealt previously with all of the problems a hospital could have, with other of its medical operation clients. But this was the first time it had confronted almost all possible problems in one single hospital. This is not to imply that there are not many dedicated workers at KDMC.

Over the decades, many of the hardest working, most competent staffers have complained to their supervisors, administrators and even the county supervisors regarding problems. Their reward has been ostracism and punishment, but they stayed because they believe in the original mission of the institution. Politics and accusations of racism have insulated the hospital from meaningful reform. Even this week, with the frantic search for a solution, these roadblocks continue, as evidenced by Monday night’s community meeting held by Congresswoman McDonald.

Would Catholic HealthCare West, or any other private non-profit be willing to take over management of the hospital under present conditions? Not likely. Any new provider would have to demand two conditions: that its costs would be covered, and that it would have a free hand in personnel. Let’s examine these two requirements.

The county civil service structure guarantees even the most incompetent worker a job based on seniority, after joining the union. Any displaced King employee would have the right to be transferred to another county hospital at the same pay grade. Recruiting new personnel, with the current reputation of KDMC, will be a challenge. The new provider will probably have to offer higher-than-normal pay and benefits for decent replacements.

The new operation would have to be guaranteed that it could at least break even, without having to drain its other operations of funds to support a loss, due to the high number of uninsured patients in Los Angeles – probably the highest percentage in the nation. King has typically 42,000 to 50,000 annual emergency room patients – a third of which are not covered (a fifth of those are illegal immigrants), who use local emergency rooms for their primary care.

Because Los Angeles is a “sanctuary city,” it attracts thousands of new arrivals every month. Thousands of Mexican residents, who don’t even desire to move here, are encouraged by their government to come to Los Angeles for acute medical procedures. They consider the worst American hospital to be better than the best Mexican facility.

One in six California hospitals have already closed due to unreimbursed treatment, and more will follow. Every time there is an emergency room closure, it puts additional demand on nearby facilities, and the dominoes continue to fall.

If Harbor UCLA Hospital takes over the license and Medicare certification of KDMC, the threatened loss of $200-million in federal funds might be avoided. But one has to ask why the trustees of the successful university medical center would want to tackle these problems. Another option would be to reduce King Drew to a local clinic, offering only the most essential services for the community.

Meanwhile, Los Angeles County has a two month deadline to avoid closing KDMC by coming up with a solution which nobody will appreciate.

Special Treatment For Special Interests

To discourage developers from illegally destroying historic buildings, the City has a law: if you demolish a building without a permit, you cannot build anything new on the site for five years.

There is, however, an unwritten exception to the rule: if you donate large sums of money to career politicians, you, of course, naturally deserve a 60% reduction in the ban. I mean, come on -- what's the point of "contributing" all that money if you're going to get treated like everyone else? Laws are for suckers.

Today's example: bizillionaire developer Richard Meruelo, who knows full well you do not tear down buildings without permits, destroyed four buildings dowtown, without bothering to get permits. The result? The L.A. Board of Building and Safety Commissioners expressly encouraged his company's lawyers to apply for an exemption from the five-year rule.

Here's how the L.A. Times reported on the meeting: "To put five years on this site, I think is extreme," said commission President Javier Nuñez. "I would be comfortable with 24 months."

Read all about it: http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-meruelo27sep27,1,4386386.story?coll=la-headlines-california .

Health Department Narrows Options for King/Drew’s Continued Operations

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services said tonight it is focusing on two options for continued operation of King/Drew Medical Center. County Health Services Director and Chief Medical Officer Bruce Chernof, M.D. said, however, that all options remain open.

“The Department is committed to providing critically needed healthcare in the community and to creating a restructured system that will allow the County to receive CMS funding.”

Two leading options being examined include transferring the hospital to a new entity such as a private hospital operator or realigning services at the KDMC site under the license of one of DHS’ fully accredited and Medicare certified facilities. Under any option the services will have to be radically restructured.

The Department expects to fully develop these options in cooperation with CMS and State authorities. The timeframe for presentation of the plan to the Board of Supervisors is extremely short because of the November 30, 2006 funding termination notice from CMS.

“The Department is committed to finding a model that keeps critical inpatient services on the site,” Chernof said. He added that whatever model is selected must meet Medicare Conditions of Participation to regain federal funding.

Under any circumstances, Chernof said, the Department will encourage public comment on whatever options are selected.


Schools forbid parents from bringing cupcakes for birthday parties -- the same schools that cannot manage to teach children how to behave, read, write or perform simple mathematical calculations.

The City of New York bans the use of a certain type of cooking oil because it's supposedly not good for you.

L.A. imposes an ever-increasing tax burden on people who have worked hard and saved to pay taxes, then hands their money to rich developers, ostensibly to build housing for people who have not worked hard and saved.

And don't even think about following the Native American, European and American tradition of smoking the devil tobacco. People who live in a city where millions of internal combustion engines idle for hours a day will contract cancer and die if a stray molecule of smoke from your stogie were to waft across a windy beach and into their nostrils.

Freedom of choice is reserved for those whose mental faculties are impaired: the mentally ill, drunks, and drug addicts. Laws don't apply to them. They can smoke what they want, drink what they want, and live where they want. The world is their toilet, including the sidewalk in front of your house. Don't you dare complain, because if you do, you clearly are a heartless, uncaring bastard. The only acceptable "solution" is to let people live on the sidewalks or buy them new condos. We obviously can't return to the practices that worked for centuries, namely, putting the mentally ill in asylums, and putting those who break the laws against public intoxication in jail. That's far too simple-minded. Rather, we must leave this problem to the "experts" -- even though the longer we follow their policies, the worse the problem gets. And be sure to ignore the policies other countries follow, even though those countries somehow never seem to have large number of people living on the streets.

Individual responsibility had become a quaint historical notion, as have limited government, common sense and prioritizing.

You cannot think for yourself.
You cannot decide for yourself.
You are not to be trusted.
You cannot keep your own money.
You exist to provide funding for career politicians and special interests.
You must be protected from attempting to make your own decisions.
You are a citizen of the modern busybodyocracy.

As they say on McIntyre in the Morning, "Shut up and row!"
You are but a galley slave in the service of the ship of state.
It's bread and circuses for you, Sparky.
Leave the governing to the ruling class.

URGENT - No on R & H Meeting

Zuma Dogg invites you to join him and Robert Aguilar at a meeting of concerned citizens this evening, to discuss the No on R & H Campaigns for this November's ballot:

When: Tonight, Wednesday, September 27 - 7:45 p.m.
Where: Denny's in Hollywood, on Sunset near the 101 (close to KTLA Studios)

Yea, yea.

When Free Speech Collides - Animal rights vs HUMAN rights

I haven't posted on here for a while but have been watching with utter amusement the he-said she-said crap being uttered from individuals with whom have less common sense then a 2 year old child on a tirade.

That is, the "Animal Rights" nutjobs on both sides of the argument.

Sit down, shut up and listen because I have had about enough of your crap.

There is this thing in the United States called free speech. This blog is an example of the ongoing celebration of literally the 1st right of every American. But freedom has it's limits. Just as you can't yell "fire" in a crowded movie theater, you can't threaten to cause harm to someone either.

Federal law exempts Mayor Sam, myself or anyone else from being personally liable for the shenanigans that takes place on this blog, however we will all cooperate with any legal order to compel evidence. This includes emails, ip logs (that would come from blogger) etc.

What we will NOT do is the following:

- we will NOT reveal the source of any bonafide tip (Personally, I would sit in jail first)
- we will NOT reveal the identity of any person or persons whom we contact to verify or clarify a story or potential story
- we will NOT get in the middle of a pissing match between individuals who believe that setting cars on fire is an acceptable form of expressing political disagreements
- If you threaten harm, deliberately disseminate libelous information, or cause yourself to become the subject of a criminal investigation we WILL hang your sorry asses out to pasture so fast you'll think that Ferret you rescued was a cow on a diet.

Have I made myself clear?

Hopefully we will be able to open this blog up again to unmoderated comments. My question for everyone is, if we can't... Which would you prefer? Moderated and anonymous or unmoderated and under a moniker?

Blog away, albeit on a time delay...

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Vote NO on "H" (Affordable Housing Bond) Unless You Are The Mayor

The only person who I could possibly think would vote "yes" on Prop "H" this November is The Mayor.

In the past three months or so, you've heard me mention the problems with AB 1381 (LAUSD Bill signed last week by Gov. Girlieman), the problems with Prop R (lengthening City Councils terms from two to three, then calling it a "limit" -- while "mingling" Ethics/Lobby reform on the same measure in an attempt to confuse voters and hold "ethics" hostage to "term extentions") -- AND NOW ZD HAS WORKED HIS WAY UP TO THE BIG BOY ON THE BALLOT: Prop H (A $1 BILLION Affordable Housing Bond).

You wanna take a billion dollars, that we don't have, and spend it now, when everyone already knows these BONDS are a big bamboozle? First of all, we'll be paying off the Bond and all the interest for generations to come. Secondly, we're lucky if 10% of the money actually ends up going where it is supposed to. Thirdly, the money always seems to magically disappear, because THERE IS NO ACCOUNTABILITY or CHECKS AND BALANCES on these bonds as to where the money actually ends up.

Whenever a shady politician wants to blow one of these curveballs past the people, they cloak it around something no one can say "no" to like Affordable Housing, Clean Water, Public Schools, or some other warm and fuzzy issue.

But again, it's money we don't have for this project that will stick your kids and grandkids with the tab (plus interest) for something that about only 10% of the money ends up going to, and there is no accountability or checks and balances over the money, which is why most of it magically disappears.

AND THE BIGGEST RED FLAG: Mayor Antonio Villagrossa is furious that "H" is on the November ballot -- instead of March ballot, because with the Governor race being voted on, there will be way higher turn out in November than in March (when the low-key, low-voter-turn-out election takes place) and it's waaaaaaaay easier to blow this bamboozle past the constiutents.

So, to make a long story short: You've heard me discuss the problems with AB 1381 and Prop R (Term Limit Extentions), and how it is causing BIG waves at City Hall (See Mayor Sam's story from Monday) -- but that was just the appetizer for "H".

Plain and simple, you'd have to be the biggest sucker on the planet to vote "yes" on H unless your name happens to be Tony Villagrossa (or one of his developers/magic assistants) who is gonna make the money magically disappear, then stick your grandkids with the tab. In other words, "NO on H".

Personally, I think the Mayor knows his political career is over in this town, has no chance of winning re-election, so why not milk the City on the way out?


Monday, September 25, 2006

"Affordable Housing," Free Market Style

"Home prices nationwide declined last month for the first time in more than a decade," according to the L.A. Times.

As for California, "sales of existing houses plunged 30.1% in August from the same month last year . . . [the] steepest year-over-year decline since August 1982, when sales tumbled 30.4%." The median price is actually up a tiny 1.6%, but don't be fooled by that number, because the number of homes going unsold is tremendous, which is nature's way of telling sellers to wake up and smell the price drop.

Impact: left to its own devices, the free market will be reducing housing prices in the next year or two. Let's not artificially inflate demand, and thus prices, by forcing taxpayers, through Measure H, to spend $1 billion on more housing.

Read the L.A. Times story here: http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-housing26sep26,0,2714633.story?coll=la-home-headlines

It had to come to this

From the first day I created this blog, the intention was to allow free speech, with a cloak of anonymity to ensure good government.

For nearly two years, this has worked. This blog has done some great things.

But lately, a small group of people with nothing better to do have decided to use my blog as the venue for their own little personal wars. This is apparently involving folks allegedly from within the Mayor's office and the animal activist community.

They are posting their crap - including "cut and paste" off topic material that is making participating in the blog not enjoyable for everyone else.

Thanks guys - you know who you are. I know you hate each other, but I didn't think you hated me enough to fuck up my blog. You are shameless and awful people.

They are dousing me with tons of threatening emails and contacting my contributors. We don't need this. We do this blog for fun and as a public service. We all have day jobs. We don't the time they do to sit on the blog all day long and delete inappropriate posts.

Therefore, as much as I hate it, I have to enact comment moderation. I don't have the time to delete posts, I barely have enough time to write for the blog given my other projects. It was that or require registration. Because I believe some good can come of anoymous posts, comment moderation is the only realistic option for now.

So what that means for all but the two of you who have something to contribute here - there will be a delay in getting it up. Many of you post breaking news in the comments section (which is much appreciated), it will be delayed. This also means I will have to spend more time moderating and less time writing. Maybe some of you in City Hall want that.

Hopefully, this can change in the future when things calm down.

Once again, I hope the people responsible for this feel really good about themselves. Trust me, all of us will remember what you have to done to decent, public discourse in Los Angeles.


Mayor Sam's Hotsheet for Monday

The LA Times reports that Eric Garcetti's hold on the Council Presidency could be in trouble. Privately, colleagues are concerned about the chances of passage of their term limits extension proposal, Measure R, and Garcetti's perceived mishanlding of legal action surrounding the measure. (See also story on Garcetti and the other ballot measure, Billion Dollar Housing Bond, Proposition H, at We Clean Your Toilets.)

The San Fernando Valley Business Journal reports that Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo called for an end to the city’s business tax during an address to the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce Thursday. This is an excellent idea and one that could really stimulate economic growth in Los Angeles. However, there is no sign that our free spending City Klowncil and Mayor would go for such a move.

In our Transit Coalition report over at Mayor Sam 2, Bart Reed informs us that extensions of the MTA Orange Line Busway are in the talking stages. Various proposals extend the line's eastern terminus in North Hollywood to Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, and on the western end to the Chatsworth Metrolink Station.

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Sunday, September 24, 2006

Why Not Just Give Your Checkbook To Chimps?

The City Clowncil authorized the expenditure of $150 million for a new police headquarters.

Let's assume, to be generous, that the decision was reasonable.

But lo and behold, every few months, the price keeps climbing, and the Clowncil keeps approving it without comment.

Current cost estimate: $396 million. Er, maybe $420 million.

Would YOU let a contractor pull that on you? Hay-ell no!

But the Clowncil doesn't care, because, after all, it's only YOUR money, not theirs.

Read the excellent Daily News editorial on this: http://www.dailynews.com/opinions/ci_4385833

Saturday, September 23, 2006

LAUSD's Marlene Canter Says "NO" To Mayor's Strange Request

First, Mayor Antonio Villagrossa forgets to invite anyone from LAUSD who didn't vote "yes" on AB 1381 to the Bill signing this week (which was everyone, except Monica Garcia). That's like having an unveiling on the "Hollywood Walk of Fame" without invited the inductee, themself. (I mean the Bill IS all about AB 1381.)

Now, the Mayor has the nerve to request a list of Superintendent candidates that LAUSD will be drawing upon to have a new Superintentent (to replace Roy Romer) in place before the Mayor MAY take over under 1381 in January. (May, because Court challenges lie ahead. And Senate Legislative Review already said, "Unconstitutional, y'all!" And many other problems that may get the whole thing tossed.)

And here's why it is NONE of the Mayor's business who LAUSD is looking at, and good for Marlene Canter for not allowing the Mayor to get away with more than he already has. (And I assure you all of his t shirt wearing "reformers" would even be outraged if they knew the shady, backhanded and unconstitutional tactics the Mayor, Nunez and Cedillo used in blowing this curve ball past the people.)

Again, AB 1381 doesn't kick in until January. And although last night, a local radio talk show host mentioned to me, "Well it was in the LA Times, that the Mayor said he would fire any LAUSD Super that (didn't meet his approval/committed to reform."

SO ZD IS HERE TO TELL YOU...IN ALL OF MY 100% CERTAINTY...THE MAYOR CAN'T HIRE AND FIRE NO LAUSD SUPERINTENDENT! He may be able to ratify (try and rally 90% approval or denial of any candidate), but that don't start till January. And October is BEFORE January...BUT NO WHERE IN AB 1381 DOES IT SAY THE MAYOR CAN FIRE ANY SUPERINTENDENT. His only recourse would be to buy out the contract of the existing Super, which would be about four years worth of buy-out.

So good for Canter for not allowing the Mayor to get his shady eyeballs on the list of candidates, so he can start to use his shady political captial to try and "get" to as many candidates as he's so good at "getting" to (cutting in), or whatever other nefarious reasons he may have.

A "Special Event Fee Waiver" Worth Paying For: 50 Cops Deployed to Skid Row to Target Crime

Why did City Council try and pull me off this story at Friday's meeting? Maybe because they didn't want me scooping the Mayor's "propoganda mouthpiece", LA Times? Which I would have if they didn't tell me it WASN'T about what ZD said it WAS actually about.

ITEM (40) from Friday's agenda: It was a "special event fee waiver" to "deploy 50 additional footbeat officers at LAPD Central area from September 17th-December 31, 2006.

So during my public comment, I said, "This looks like 50 new cops hitting the streets to enforce the streets for crime?" (I thought it sounded like something good.) But, I was quickly told that's NOT what it is for, and a Councilmember staffer, pulled me off to the side to clarify, it is simply to close down a portion of the streets for LAPD. And after further questioning along the lines, "So this ISN'T to put 50 cops on the street, like to partrol skid row?" And I was told it is simply a "special event" request to close down the streets for LAPD to use (for training, or something.)

So, I called LAPD to see what the "special event" was (reason they are closing down the street, and where) and I was told it is INDEED:

"50 officers being sent to Skid Row, not to traget homelessness, but crimes like narcotic sales and people who refuse to move away from/stop blocking businesses when they are ready to open. An increased street presence of officers in the effort to abate the street crimes that occur."

So it sounds like that "special event" is declaring "Skid Row" as the zone, to target the type of criminal activity that is scarring away business and all the "loft yuppies" who are moving out (and keeping new ones from moving in).

Let's see if this is "exactly" what the Mayor, Chief Bratton and City Council says Sunday morning at 11:30am at Central Station, regarding "Safer Cities and Skid Row", and they lied to ZD to keep him off the story for an additional 24-48 hours?

And read the story in Mayor V.'s own favorite propoganda piece, The LA Times, at www.latimes.com (story by Patrick Mcgreevy). So in this case, you actually can get some usesful information, cause it just so happens the City is doing something ZD feels is worth mentioning.

"Helping" The Homeless For Fun And Profit

Today, class, we're having a pop quiz, consisting of a single essay question.

Oops! I forgot -- thanks to advances in education, we no longer have "quizzes," "tests" or "essay questions!"

Let me start over:

Today, class we'll be having a "formal assessment." You will write a "constructed response" to the following question:

"Suppose you are in charge of spending $800,000 of taxpayers' hard-earned money to prevent the mentally ill, drunks and drug addicts from living on the sidewalks of Los Angeles. How would you spend it?"

According to the L.A. Daily News, the County's answer is to spend the $800,000 on an "outreach campaign to deal with 'anticipated adverse community reaction' to proposed homeless shelters and plans to locate centers throughout the county."

Great concept! I wish I had thought of that! Let's spend nearly a million dollars to try to convince people to embrace our plan to spend an additional $80 million building "regional stabilization centers" in their neighborhoods!

Have you ever noticed how the solution to every problem in L.A. is to spend tax dollars on public relations and construction? Why do you suppose that is?

How about we instead have some state legislators pass some laws so we can put the mentally ill in mental institutions regardless of whether they consent to it -- especially since the idea of a mentally ill person having the capacity to consent to anything is dubious at best. And how about we simply enforce the laws against public intoxication for those who are not mentally ill, but are instead drunk or high?

No, we won't do that. Proposals like that would not transfer enough of your money to developers and the "homeless industry."

Rather, what we need are lots of choreographed "fact finding" and "outreach" meetings, lots of concerned employees from "nonprofits," some "educational" campaigns, a number of disturbing photos, three or four tragic stories, a good soundtrack, and, of course, many many grants, low-interest loans and other programs to distribute your money to developers. That, my friend, is how you solve a problem in L.A. in 2006: give taxpayers' money to developers to build structures.

What if you dare speak out against this insanity? Well, then you're a heartless, selfish bastard. After all, as long as anyone claims he is acting on behalf of the homeless, it doesn't really matter whether his proposal makes any sense. The simple act of saying you are helping the hopeless, in and of itself, establishes the validity of your proposal. After all, any animal with four legs and wool must be a sheep.

Read it and weep: http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_4383374.

Friday, September 22, 2006


We've been talking so much about Proposition R, we've not spent much time on Measure H - The $1 Billion Housing Boondoggle, or also known as the construction/ consultant/ victocrat full employment act.

Today, one of the major business groups in the Valley decided to endorse the measure. They must have some members who want some of that $1 billion.

In the next couple of weeks, this old, dead Republican Mayor will make the case that Prop H would be a disaster for the city.

In the meantime, read their puffy press piece:

The Valley Industry and Commerce Association (“VICA”) today endorsed City of Los Angeles Measure H—a $1 billion housing bond that would create a trust fund to provide affordable housing options in Los Angeles.

“In the Valley, housing is also a transportation issue. Voters should look at Measure H, not just as a housing bond, but a congestion relief bond as well,” according to VICA President Brendan Huffman, who noted that Measure H will also compliment Propositions 1b and 1c, both of which invest in transit oriented housing.
“Part of VICA’s support for Measure H is because of the City Council’s recent efforts to streamline the Byzantine building permit process in L.A.

Together, these measures will produce more housing where it is needed most.”
Measure H calls for the City to issue $1,000,000,000 of bonds to provide thousands of new homes and rental units over ten years. These funds would be placed in the Affordable Housing Trust Fund to help working families buy their first home, to build rental housing affordable to low-income working families, to build housing for homeless people, and to be allocated for rental or homeless housing based on future needs.

Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa stated, "This measure represents the cornerstone of an historic and comprehensive strategic plan addressing the City’s housing crisis at every level. Led by a broad coalition of business leaders, housing advocates, policy experts, and elected leaders, Measure H will expand opportunities for first-time home-buyers, create more affordable housing for middle class families, and redouble the city’s efforts at finding permanent solutions for the chronically homeless."

"I applaud VICA's decision to get behind Measure H, which I am confident will have a noticeable effect on the Valley's housing stock and to relieve traffic congestion,” said L.A. City Councilmember Wendy Greuel. “VICA's support is critical, and I look forward to working with Valley business leaders to get the word out about Measure H."
VICA is often considered a bellwether of how ballot initiatives will fare with San Fernando Valley voters. In recent years, several bonds have failed (libraries, schools, police stations) largely due to high turnout among Valley voters who are less likely to support bonds than voters in other parts of the city. VICA will be urging voters to support Measure H and Governor Schwarzenegger's infrastructure bond package, Propositions 1a-1e.


Thursday, September 21, 2006

Marcos Craps His Pants! Alleged Sandy Wells Attacker Arrested

Channel 4 News is reporting that a suspect in the attack on reporter Sandy Wells, back on June 1st outside Academia Semillas Del Pueblo has been arrested by LAPD officers Thursday.

Ramon Flores, 31, was arrested at a routine traffic stop following an investigation by police. They also impounded Flores' silver Dodge Magnum, which fits the description Wells gave of the vehicle he said tried to run him down. Flores is being held on $80,000 bail.

Wells was reporting on the controversial charter school for KABC's Doug McIntyre program when he was allegedly chased down the sidewalk by a vehicle. Then, the driver jumped out of the car, jumped Wells and took his audiotape. McIntyre and the station offered a reward for information leading to the attacker's arrest and conviction.

Police say they do not what Flores' connection to the school is, if any.

If he has any connection to Marcos, expect the caca to fly.

What's Next Regarding LAPD Enforcement of Skid Row Now That ACLU Agreement Has Been Rejected

What happened yesterday regarding Council's decision to fight the ACLU "Skid Row" enforcement court order preventing LAPD from arresting homeless for sleeping on the streets, therefore, preventing them from disassembling the "tent cities" each day (aka: the real problem) is still leaving most people somewhat confused as to where we are actually at with this.

So here's the actual WORD, y'all.

Bratton was disappointed that Council chose to fight this agreement, because he wanted to get the ball rolling. (Perhaps because he felt enforcement between 6a-9p, would be the wedge he needs to get the job done.)

However, there is talk that Jan Perry has a "temporary trial plan", that LAPD will try out for 90 days, along the lines of the ACLU agreement (that Council voted to reserved the right to challenge it in court at a later date).

But, Regarding this "trial plan", LAPD says they cannot lift a finger because now that Council voted "no" the ACLU agreement, all bets are off, and the LAPD's hands and battons are tied, because the court order now remains. (They can't break the law/go against a court order to enforce the law.)

So, what's up with the Jan Perry test plan? Well, as we speak, I am told that the City Attorney's office is looking over the facts, to see what LAPD can and cannot do regarding enforcement of Skid Row, now that the ACLU agreement is off, and the court order preventing LAPD from arresting homeless for sleeping on the street, and more importantly, forcing those "tent cities" to be disassembled on a daily basis. (The real problem, see story below) is in effect.

Hopefully, the City Attorney's office will be able to come up with enough stuff that LAPD can do, to unlock Bratton's own handcuffs, and let them get the ball rolling on Skid Row.

Then, Mr. City Attorney will meet with City Council, and they'll get back to LAPD on what can and cannot be done under the court order. Whatever the outcome, I hope it makes the ACLU happy. Cause when the ACLU is happy, the Mayor is happy.


Wednesday, September 20, 2006

City Council Stands Up To ACLU on Behalf of LAPD and The City

It was a confusing day at City Hall. In the nearly six months since I've attended the City Council meetings, about three days a week, I have never seen more television and radio reporters, more photographers and public comment speakers showing up on such a hot issue, and walking away more confused. Chief Bratton was even in attendance, seated in the front row, so I had to take the second row, today. (Tune into TV 35 Sunday afternoon.)

I'm serious when I say all in attendance were confused as to what just happened and what it means. One Councilmember wanted it clarified exactly what happened, because the Councilmember wasn't even sure everyone knew what they were voting on. (And that's no slam, because it is confusing.) But in the end, I think it is the first big step the City has taken toward addressing the homeless people, camped out in tents, on the Skid Row area of Downtown Los Angeles.

Previously, there has been an injunction preventing LAPD from arresting the homeless for sleeping on the sidewalk. Then the ACLU (I even saw Carol Soble for the first time) reached an "agreement" with the City that will actually prevent/disallow/ban/stop LAPD from arresting the homeless on the streets that homeowners and buisnesses are scared to invest in, and others are leaving, between the hours of 9p-6a. (Does that include holidays?) And today, City Council was going to decide, behind closed-door session, whether to appeal the agreement in court, meaning FIGHT to allow LAPD to enforce the streets of Los Angeles, 24 hours a day. (Without allowing an "anything goes" policy from 9p-6a.)

This guy, Tom, was there representing the business/building owners in the area who say these "tent cities" from 9p-6a do enough damage to property, let alone scares away all the investors/people who we want to attract to our Convention Center and future City Projects, to last an entire day.

Both sides felt it was a victory, and both conceeded to compromise. All the TV reports you know form 2,4,5,7,11,13 were there with their cameras huddled around first Tom, then Carol. I just happened to be elbow to elbow with Carol as the media surrounded her, so when she said, "We don't want to criminalize people for sleeping on the sidewalk", Zuma Dogg was quick to retort, "What about all the drugs?" And her reply was, "Go away Zuma Dogg!" (With all TV cameras in the city rolling, y'all...yeah, yeah!) But she was being good natured in her public annoyance, so don't hate on her for that.

Well, City Council decided, not exactly to appeal the agreement, but decided to keep the option open, while we try this:

LAPD is going to start enforcing Skid Row, because the reality is (according to those involved in actually patrolling the streets) that these tent cities have NOTHING to do with trying to get a good nights sleep, and EVERYTHING to do with the fact that they are really just a place where about the only thing going on is drug sales and beating up on each other in the process. However, ZD predicts they will stick to the hours of enforcement to 6a-9p, as per the ALCU agreeement. Then after ninety days, we will see where it's at, and if City Council still wants to preceed with their fight to overturn this in appeals court. (Today, they voted to leave that window open.)

So, I'm sure the ACLU has the best of intentions, but it seems like all this agreeement you cut with your ACLU alumist (Mayor Villagrossa) does is allow the police to be disallowed from making sweeps of Skid Row from the hours of 9p-6a, the hours when we need them most. And the mere sound of it is like one big, gigantic, "PLEASE DON'T INVEST IN LA" billboard at the airport.

But LAPD doesn't want to look like their turning into a "police state" and ruffle the feathers of all these outspoken activists, so they're gonna give it a try the way ACLU wants, and Council said they won't stand in the way, for now.

However, ALL the reporters were shouting, "How do we judge if this is working? Who decides?" (Measure and accountability.) That's been left unanswered. And, so has what actually happens next. All this stuff about LAPD probably sticking to the ACLU agreement is based on talking to those in the know. But, I can't claim it's official. (But, I'm not the LA Times or Daily News, so I can roll with it, y'all...)

A few people I spoke with on the phone wanted to mention that there are empty beds at nearby shelters, left empty, every day...so, "Hey Bud, What's your problem?" Now, the problem, for some, is that you cannot stay in these shelters if you are using drugs or drinking alcohol. So that keeps the most dangerous elements out of the shelters, and on the streets, leaving open beds for those who are not using/drinking, and a truly the one's ACLU are fighting for. However, again, I spoke with an officer in charge of patrolling Skid Row, himself (no one else noticed him , or spoke with him), but he was VERY clear. HE IS HERE TO TELL YOU, these tent cities have NOTHING to do with getting a good nights sleep and EVERYTHING to do with being a 24 hour drug dealing safe haven.

So for now, with a guy like Chief Bratton running the effort, ZD mentioned during public comment, that the hours of 6a-9p will be all you need to remove the criminals, get the mentally ill into social service programs and the rest of homeless who are there, that don't want to be there, will have room in existing shelters and new ones that might be on the way with that $29 million the Mayor approved this week for these causes.

So although I may be percieved as the biggest nemesis to City Hall (Mayor & Council), if you are FOR doing something about Skid Row, City Council stood-up for round the clock enforcement rights, LAPD may try it under the ACLU agreement and see how it works. And the Mayor approved $29 million that I think goes to this. (It ain't always so easy to figure it all out, y'all...So post a comment.

Zuma Dogg

Angry Citizens Force City Clowncil To Abandon Sidewalk Settlement

The City Clowncil got the message loud and clear from L.A.'s no-longer-silent majority today: don't you dare surrender our sidewalks to drunks, drug addicts, prostitutes and the mentally ill. Clowncil Members walked away from their settlement agreement with the ACLU, and opted instead, after having been hit upside the head with the political equivalent of a 2 x 4, to defend the City's anti-loitering laws in the Court of Appeals.

That L.A.'s working, taxpaying citizens had to take time out of their busy day to educate the Clowncil on this issue is outrageous. As a trial attorney, I can tell you that the City's attorneys would never have negotiated that deal in the first place without a "green light" from the client, i.e., the Mayor and City Clowncil.

Those of us who could not make it to the Clowncil today owe a debt of gratitude to those who spoke out. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Now, about the Mayor's vacation to England and the Far East. . . . No, don't even get me started. We've got people living on sidewalks, he's just taken over the schools, and what does he do? Goes to Manchester, England? Is this a re-make of "Hair?" And the Far East? Is he going to try to get Pandas, the way Hahn did, and instead come back with another multimillion-dollar monkey rental agreement? Or is this just another career politician all-expense-paid vacation, plus "international" photo-ops for his pitch to become Hillary's running-mate?

Prepare your escape pods, people.

Mayor Sam's Hotsheet for Wednesday

Our Mayor and Police Chief have rolled over to the extremists at the ACLU and have created a homeless do what you want zone in Downtown Los Angeles (for more details, read Walter Moore's article or the LA Times article). The Mayor, the Chief, Councilman "Wacko Jacko" Weiss and others think its great. The thing is, the people who work, live and own businesses & property in the area don't think its that great. In New York, Mayor Rudy Giuliani addressed the homeless problem head on. Bratton's successor as Police Commissioner, Howard Safir joined the Mayor and did not give in to the ACLU. Of course, that was after Bratton was sort of run out of town on a rail for being a media hungry ho and always trying to steal the spotlight from Rudy. But that's another story. Jonathan Larson - the author of the great Broaway musical RENT - best asked a question that should be asked of Mayor V - "Do you really want a neighborhood where people piss on your stoop every night?"

In a related story, LA Voice reports on some guerilla protest "art" that went up in Skid Row, a street sign that says "ACLU CRACK HAVEN." The sign certainly makes the point that the settlement with the ACLU will certainly do nothing to assist police fight drugs in the area.

Mayor Villaraigosa will hold a press conference Wednesday to announce a series of international junkets he has coming up. Read a few more details at We Clean Your Toilets.

Maybe Zuma Dogg needs to go show the LA Neighborhood Council Congress a thing or two. Martini Republic reports that at a recent meeting LANC President Brady "I'm Don Garza's Favorite Guy" Westwater refused to allow opposition to the billion dollar homeless bond fraud, Proposition H, be heard, though he allowed Council President Eric Garcetti to drone on for 45 minutes. You know, the NC folks bitch because someone like Jackie Goldberg or Nate Holden get some kind of professional courtesy to speak before Council ad naueseum and they get 60 seconds. How about a little consistency here guys? Alger, can you explain this? Do I need to send Zuma down there to kick some butt?

The LAUSD announced Tuesday that Lawrence Manion has been named as the chief of their Police Department after serving in the position on an interim basis.

And finally, this is not good news for big box haters like Joe B., but a recall election that attempted to remove two pro-WalMart council members failed in Rosemead Tuesday. The reason? Well, because they approved a WalMart for their community. Maybe voters are starting to get a clue.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Appeal This!

On Sept 18th,
The No Home Depot Campaign
filed an Appeal with the City arguing against their issuance of "Tenant Improvement" Building permits to Home Depot so that they can open a store in Sunland-Tujunga.
The community has fought for almost 2 years to keep Home Depot out, and fought instead, to bring in a much needed general merchandise store. The site of the proposed Home Depot formerly housed a K-Mart, and is the only site left, of this size, that could possibly ever host a general merchandise store in the area. Currently, residents must travel to the neighboring cities of Burbank, Pasadena, Glendale, and even Santa Clarita for basic household needs.
This Appeal was filed on behalf of the community, and the document itself is a powerful, complete and persuasive argument that the City should have never issued these permits to Home Depot in the first place.
How will the City respond?
Well, the Appeal was filed with the Department of Building and Safety, and they will have the first say-so in whether they agree or disagree with the community's arguments. They are also the City department that issued Home Depot the permits in the first place!
This is similar to walking into the wolves den and asking " So who killed the chicken?".
Fortunately, the Appeal Process is multi-tiered, so even if LADBS refuses to recognize their mistake, the chain of command provides many opportunities to pass the buck and the responsibility and the decision making onto someone else.
This brings me to a simple request.
I am posting a link to our Appeal, and I would appreciate if the denizens of Mayor
Sam would give it a once-over.
I realize that I may endure the brilliant, surly, and incoherent comments from the dum-dums and the Home Depot shills, but hey, what's a day without dum-dums and shills in this town?
Enjoy and Thankyou!
The Appeal

City Hall Surrenders Sidewalks To Homeless

Rather than bothering to defend the rule of law -- and common sense -- in the courts, City Hall has surrendered the public sidewalks to the ACLU.

According to the L.A. Times, a settlement agreement between the City of Los Angeles and the ACLU "would also establish a downtown area — bounded by Central Avenue and Los Angeles, 3rd and 7th streets — where homeless people would be allowed to sleep on sidewalks at night without challenge by police or business owners."

How incredibly gutless can one collection of elected officials be? The City of L.A. has set a new standard -- a new low, that is.

Can someone pinpoint for me the point in history when we lost our collective mind? Can someone explain why the law-abiding, taxpaying citizens of our city must allow people to live on the sidewalks? Just when did we decide that the mentally ill and drunk can no longer be scooped up and taken somewhere for psychiatric treatment or a "drunk tank," respectively?

And is it supposedly "humane" to pretend people who clearly cannot take care of themselves have a "right" to camp on sidewalks?

This city will become a case study on what happens when apathetic citizens leave control of public policy to career politicians whose only interest is maintaining political office. Every day, L.A. becomes more of a Third World Country, and more of a monument to the insanity of political correctness.

Our police, already prohibited from enforcing federal immigration law, will now be prohibited from exerting control over our sidewalks. Why? Because none of our elected officials has the guts to stand up for the average taxpaying citizen. Instead, they are afraid of appearing "insensitive" to the "plight" of the "homeless." Apparently none of them understood that the story about the "Emperor's New Clothes" wasn't about clothes at all, but was instead about having the courage to tell the truth.

Meanwhile, thanks to these same career politicians, the poor are taxed to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies to rich developers -- so they can build ever more dense housing, thereby ruining the distinctive character of our low-rise city, and aggravating the now perpetual gridlock. And, not content with the current torrent of tax dollars flowing from the middle class to the billionaires, they have put Measure H on the ballot, to add another $2 billion tax burden on homeowners for the next 20 years.

Schools, meanwhile, are not preparing children to function productively in our culture. Instead, they teach that all cultures are created equal, all behavior is acceptable, and, if you come here from abroad, it is America's duty to learn your language and customs, not the other way around. No one stops to think that the reason most countries are train wrecks whose inhabitants flee is, in large part, their cultures. It's not as though every Third World country lacks resources, after all. On the contrary, most have tremendous natural resources. The reason for their perpetual poverty lies elsewhere.

Here, however, we daily abandon the very precepts that made our city a great place to live. Ever wonder what the decline of the Roman Empire was like? Look around: you're living it.

Why LAUSD NEEDS To Challenge The Mayor's AB 1381 In Court

* MS POSTER SAID, "This fight is going to be good. Board of Education president Marlene Canter, who was not invited to the ceremony, told LA Observed this morning that the board intends to go ahead with plans to litigate the constitutionality of the bill. The board is also moving ahead with plans to hire a new superintendent to replace the departing Roy Romer before AB 1381 taking effect on Jan. 1."

ZD SAID, in response to the question, "What's YOUR plan?": "I DO have an alternative plan for the mayor, and it includes allowing for input from the public (parents and teachers) regarding LAUSD...I would take the (over) $20 2/3 BILLION real estate budget OUT of the hands of the School Superintendent (controlled by the Mayor, if AV gets his way) because a School Super is supposed to be busy running the schools (principals, teachers, students, LAUSD, parents, kids, community groups) -- NOT running a real estate development conglomertate, bigger than Donald Trump's.

I would MANDATE that an Inspector General be appointed to make sure the Super isn't wasting, abusing or fraudulantly spending the money, since now he/she is control of it all. I would make sure the Super IS accountable for ALL expenditures OVER and UNDER $250,000, cause right now, it's neither. (Explained below in this story.)

Then, after some of that was taken care of, I would let LAUSD run the schools, while I, as Mayor of The City of Los Angeles, would fight in Sacramento, not to overtake the school system in a combative way, that has only added layers of additional beauracracy (instead of removing layers), but for money to reduce classroom size to about 25; to pay teachers more money, so we can replace the ones who are retiring earlier than ever, while all the college graduates are taking jobs out of the state because the City hasn't done enough to provide affordable housing for these new teachers to live.

I would give LAPD/Bratton the money he needs, for things like the crime reduction czar he has asked for (to coordinate community based policing efforts), to help make the streets safer, so kids are not scared to go to school. (After all, the school itself IS safer than the streets the Mayor is already in charge of.)

I admit. The Mayor DOES have his neck out on the line with AB 1381. Before I knew a thing about it, I thought the Mayor got "tagged" with this albatross for some reason, then I found out he WANTED to do it. And it's practically impossible to win now, cause it's only made things worse (more beuracracy, not less), and it's an uphill battle, at best.

At this point he must know his political career is over anyway, so let's hijack LAUSD. Here's what we'll do: We'll take control of the Superintendent, put him in charge of the BILLIONS UPON BILLIONS OF DOLLARS, won't mandate an Inspector General to watch over the person in charge of ALL spending , including over $20 2/3 BILLION in facilities money (repair/new construction), then we'll let him spend up to $250,000 for anything he/she wants, and isn't required to tell LAUSD, or anyone at all. And anything the Super spends OVER $250,000 ONLY REQUIRES 45 DAY NOTICE: HOWEVER IT IS ONLY A NOTICE. (no input or accountability from LAUSD, or anyone, like the parents).

So watch for these low ball contracting bids the Mayor's Superintendent (after all Mayor gets approval or rejection rights, right) hands out. Cause when you can keep tacking on $250,000 here and $250,000 there, the cost goes up real quick...And that's how a politician, who must know his re-election chances are over, sticks his
neck out for a plan destined to lose, under this Bill, so you take the kids milk money, and facilities money, on the way out."

Zuma Dogg
for Los Angeles City Council

More Straw less man... Desperation Strikes Prop R Supporter

Last night I posted the definition of a Straw Man argument in the hope that the individual I pointed out might see the error of his ways and steer his car back onto the road of civilized conversation and debate. Having nothing to support the myriad of claims and accusations he instead proceeded to hit the gas and drive straight off a cliff. Attacking Neighborhood Councils and having a complete conversation with himself on this blog for a good part of the day.

See, this is why I support Universal Healthcare. If we had it, morons like this wouldn’t be off of their medication.

This genius is as proud as a brand new dad because he came up with what he thinks is a groovy catch phrase; “less than one percenters.” What he is attempting to do is compare the elections of Neighborhood Councils to that of the City Council, which is akin to comparing checkers to water polo. The purpose is obvious, to attempt to discredit those who disagree with him and if that doesn’t work, simply distract you from the matter at hand which in this case is Proposition R. Someone’s been reading Karl Rove’s new book a little too much and suddenly thinks he’s James Carville.

In this particular under-medicated nincompoops mind he begins by drawing an artificial parallel to the elections of multi-million dollar city wide campaigns, and those of citizen volunteers. Then he states that these folks don’t represent the community. See right there in the sub-basement of the argument he misses the entire point of Neighborhood Councils. A point I shouldn’t have to make to any individual with enough intelligence to turn on a computer, but since this individual obviously took the short yellow bus to work this morning lets see if I can spell this one out for him... and while we’re at it you City Hall Staffers take note…

Neighborhood Councils are designed to be a cross-section of the community and by the sheer makeup of their boards represent diverse groups in each community.

Any argument that the Neighborhood Councils “don’t represent” the general feelings of the city might hold water if they were running opposite of public opinion, but those polls have Proposition R going down like the Hindenburg. (Oh wait, what are “polls”? A small sampling of people, usually just a few hundred, designed to see what millions of people are thinking. I suppose they don’t represent the people either)

So, in an utter act of desperation comes the charge (oh is this good) that the reason Neighborhood Councils are fighting Proposition R across the entire city, is because they want to run for City Council.

Another 20 ft tall Straw Man.

Making the argument out of thin air, assuming it is fact, and then demanding that these people out themselves to show their “true” motivation. He wants you to forget that it takes more than the individual but a majority of each council to agree as well, for a motion to pass. In most cases that means an average of 11 members per Neighborhood Council (assuming the city average of 20 boardmembers)

Since it seems to be escaping this one blogger who feels so strongly that Neighborhood Councils mean absolutely nothing that he must sit here all day and attack them, exactly why people are against Proposition R let me spell it out for you.

The City Council violated the City Charter, bypassed the public, and wrapped up a self serving extension of their term into a so-called ethics reform package that actually weakens the city’s ethics rules.

Just precisely how stupid do you guys think we are?

Nevermind. Don’t answer that. The fact you even tried it answers the question.

This Councilman officially endorses the No on Prop R campaign.

Blog away dum dums … but to that “special” dum dum, try to keep your posts to under 20 today what do ya say?


Blog will be down at 4PM

We have been advised that the blog will be down for maintenance at around 4pm and is scheduled to remain down for 15 minutes but who knows?

So when your scheduling your "breaks" on the 4th floor... 4pm would be a bad time.

L.A.'s Top Two Stories: Mayor Approves $29 Million For Homeless AND Zuma Dogg Show, Tonight at 5:30pm on Time Warner/Hollywood

Two important stories affecting the City. First of all, watch Zuma Dogg FOUR times today in L.A. on TV. The City Council meeting, as televised on TV 35 at 10:00am (with 7:30p & 12m replay), where I will be commenting on agendized items, open for public comment. Plus, tonight at 5:30pm, it's "The Zuma Dogg Show" on Time Warner's Hollywood system. (Set your DVRs...it'll be funny, nothing too uncomfortable for City Hall.)

And, since the Mayor keeps getting pissed off at his staff, cause ZD keeps stealing his thunder, with breaking news stories that superceed the stories he WANTS you to hear about...and I've been kinda hard on the guy, for the past few months, ONLY BECAUSE OF WHAT I AM HEARING AND SEEING. So here's something that sounds pretty good for the City (conceptually), because the City DOES have to address this problem in a very real way, because it's the big painted elephant standing in the art gallery, that no one has taken seriously. So thank you Mayor for what seems like a good start to me. Sorry confused ZD fans. I don't only report one side of things, it just looks that way, cause City Hall is so messed up. But when I hear good things happening in the City, I'll report that, too. Otherwise, it gets boring.

L.A. Daily News
The Very Excellent Rick Orlov

NORTH HOLLYWOOD - More than 2,000 homeless people will receive financial help to find permanent housing under a $29 million expansion of the Section 8 rental-subsidy program, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced Monday.
The program will fund shelter as well as social services for the homeless residents. The city already has 51,000 families receiving Section 8 subsidies.

"Every night in Los Angeles, there are 45,000 people sleeping on the streets," Villaraigosa said, standing in front of a new six-unit apartment complex of two- and three-bedroom units. "One-fourth of those are women with children who have no place to go because the shelters are full. This is a way to give them a chance."

Now, I'm sure the critics will post the problems below, that ZD is naive to. That's how these things are always uncovered. Like Mr. KABC told me on-the-air, he thinks it's too expensive, why don't we just hand the money over to the homeless, it'd be waaaay cheaper. So, maybe some people who know more about it can post how this thing works and the kind of things the money is spent for. AND PLEASE, DON'T DO TO THE MAYOR WHAT HIS SUPPORTERS ARE DOING TO ME. DON'T JUST BASH THE MAYOR. Try and explain what's up, and if there are legitimate beefs; do I want to hear them? Hell Yeah! But keep it real.

More importantly, remember to watch, "Zuma Dogg Fights City Hall" (it's a good one, and not TOO anti-City Hall...it's the one where the LA Times sends a photographer to cover me, but I didn't know at first.) Tonight 5:30pm, Time Warner/Hollywood system, Public Access Channel. And 10am,7:30pm & 12mid on TV 35, yeah, yeah!

Zuma Dogg
International Celebrity
Superstar Rap Producer
Vote No on R Talker

Monday, September 18, 2006

How Come LAUSD Was NOT Invited to AB 1381 Bill Signing Today?

You would think board members of LAUSD would have been invited to the signing of AB 1381 which is ALL ABOUT LAUSD: But there was some kind of "unintentional" mix up, I guess.

You see, it was inaccuratley reported in the media that LAUSD WAS invited to the watch Mr. Kindergarden Cop sign the Bill today, because the Mayor's office TOLD the media LAUSD was invited.

But it looks like LAUSD is getting the same treatment that kids and parents got who wanted to attend town hall meetings, because according to SEVERAL different people I spoke with at LAUSD including the Superintendant's office, the invitations never made it. (ZD confirms neither Roy Romer or Marlene Canter were invited, WORD!)

Wow! What a great sign of things to come. The Mayor says he wants to work with LAUSD, but doesn't include them at the damn signing of the Bill. Very telling...very symbolic.

When LAUSD followed up with City Hall, to see who was in charge of actually notifying LAUSD of the event, just like the problem with the Bill itself, there was NO ACCOUNTABILITY. Everyone just said, "Duh...I don't know, it's not MY job." We'll I guess it was EVERYONE's job to be nobody's job. However, it was very clear it was someone's job to notify the press that LAUSD WOULD be in attendance, even though they weren't notified. (Maybe we need the Brown Act to include Bill signings.)

The Mayor's spokesperson told me, "It was their understanding that LAUSD WAS invited, as far as they knew." (Aka: Transfer accountability from the Mayor and place it on his staff, just like this Bill transfers legal liability from the Mayor and places it on LAUSD.)

And speaking of lack of accountability, it should be noted that no where in AB 1381 is there an actual plan/wording addressing student achievement or drop out rates. (How does the Bill achieve this then?) And, nowhere does it allow for parent involvement/input.

Luckily for the Mayor and his money grabbing bandits, there is plenty in the Bill addressing how the Superintendent has complete control over all the money at the same time they removed the REQUIERMENT of an Inspector General to investigate for fraud, waste and abuse. (So I hope you guys trust Mayor V with the billions in LAUSD money, because now, you HAVE to.)

So to sum it up, AB 1381, which removes the School Board and public from oversight of this Bill; that only addresses the issue of how the Superinendant gets control of all the money and contracts, was signed today by Governor Girlie Man, but LAUSD doesn't play enough of a significant role in this Bill to even be invited to the signing. One word to everyone who supported this Bill...SUCKERS!

Zuma Dogg
Public Advocate of The Communities

...and oh yeah, no on r.

The Straw Man and Prop R

The Straw Man is a frequent friend of ours here on Mayor Sam. He often appears when politicos or politico wannabes get caught trying to defend the indefensible, or attempt to make themselves seem more important than they actually are. They can be easily spotted when someone says "people are saying" or words similar as they try desperately to justify their own beliefs.

What is a Straw Man? For those who don't know a Straw Man presents a misrepresentation of the opponent's position, refutes it, and pretends that the opponent's actual position has been refuted, presents someone who defends a position poorly as the defender, refutes that person's arguments, and pretends that every upholder of that position, and thus the position itself, has been defeated or invents a fictitious persona with actions or beliefs that are criticized, and pretends that the person represents a group of whom the speaker is critical.

Our Commander in Chief is a king of the Straw Man arguments with statements on Iraq like "some people say we should just cut and run..." yada yada yada. Of course no one actually ever said that but the old political trick is to say it enough times and SOMEONE will believe it.

An example of one misguided bloggers repeated introduction of the Straw Man follows:

"Hahn and Garcetti caught "flat footed" and ill equipped and ONLY 100 NC board members throughout the city were there, or even cared.

Only about 1 board member from each of the NCs, but since half or more of the NCs send no one to these meetings, that means there's not only limited interest on the part of the NCs that do send people to the alliance, but not even that much curiosity on the part of most of the other NCs.

What have I been saying children. . . there is NO ground swell, there is NO rising tide, and only a handful of unmandated NIMBY NCs are paying ANY attention to this."

This genius has been ranting on Mayor Sam for some time. First bad-mouthing Neighborhood Councils as representing less than 1 percent of Angelenos, then accusing them of "not caring" about Prop R. Then he has the nerve to turn 180 degrees and state that that "not caring" is representative of the entire city not caring about this issue. (Of course if that were true he would probably just shut up in the first place.)

On what farm does this individual reside where there is an overabundance of straw? Precisely how limber is this individual to have inserted his head so deeply up his rear end?

Here are the facts, without commentary, on the opposition to Prop R:

LA Chamber of Commerce
LA league of Women Voters
LA City Council

OPPOSING PROP R (in alphabetical order):
Jim Alger
President Northridge West neighborhood Council/Senator/Vice Chair LANCC

Jill Banks Barad
Chair, Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils

Anthony Butka
Member, League of Women Voters - Los Angeles Board Member, Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council

Humberto Camacho Board Member, Pico Union Neighborhood Council, Senator LANCC

Cindy Cleghorn
Chairperson, Sunland-Tujunga Neighborhood Council

Richard Close
President, Sherman Oaks Homeowners Association

Byron DeLear
Candidate, United States Congress

Pat Herrera Duran
Former Vice President, Board of Neighborhood Commissioners

Soledad García
Board Member, Coastal San Pedro Neighborhood Council Chair, LA DWP-Neighborhood Council MOU Oversight Committee, Senator, LANCC

Jeffrey Jacobberger
Member, Neighborhood Council Review Commission/Senator LANCC

Bennett Kayser
Former Member, Charter Reform Commission Vice President, Greater Echo Park Elysian Neighborhood Council

Heinrich Keifer
Former President, Highland Park Chamber of Commerce

Jason Lyon
Former Co-Chair, Silver Lake Neighborhood Council

Robert Lamishaw
Past President, Mid Valley Chamber of Commerce

Bill Murray
President, Los Angeles Community Policing

Edwin Ramirez
President, Pacoima Neighborhood Council

Pastor A.J. Mora
Board Member, Arroyo Seco Neighborhood Council

Greg Nelson
General Manager, Department of Neighborhood Empowerment (Retired)

Julian Rogers
Chair, Empowerment Congress Southeast Area Neighborhood Development Council

Frank Wada
Board Member, Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council

Central San Pedro Neighborhood Council

Glassell Park Neighborhood Council

Harbor Gateway North Neighborhood Council

Harbor Gateway South Neighborhood Council

Mar Vista Community Council

Neighborhood Council of Westchester/Playa del Rey

North Hollywood North East Neighborhood Council

Northridge West Neighborhood Council

Sunland-Tujunga Neighborhood Council

Sun Valley Area Neighborhood Council

Tarzana Neighborhood Council

Valley Alliance of Neighborhood Councils

Wilmington Neighborhood Council

Winnetka Neighborhood Council

Valley VOTE

The Los Angeles Daily News

The Los Angeles Times


Wow. 20 Community leaders (and counting), 14 Neighborhood Councils (and counting) Valley Vote, the Daily News and the LA Times...

...Sure. You're absolutely right. There is no ground swell at all.

Blog away dum dums.