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Monday, September 21, 2009

KPCC violates FCC "equal time" rule to promote "Big 3" Machine Candidates in CD 2 race

Radio station KPCC 89.3 FM might be the subject of an FCC complaint or investigation in the near future. Just minutes ago, host Larry Mantle and KPCC decided to violate the FCC regulations regarding "equal time" for all candidates involved in an election. Only the "Big 3" big money Machine Candidates for the City Council seat in CD 2 were allowed to go on the air with Larry.

Larry Mantle did a good job, regardless of the poor choice to only speak to these three candidates.
The first few minutes were the standard self-congratulatory speeches and boilerplate campaign jibber-jabber.

Things got spicy when Larry Mantle pointed out some dicey subject areas and let the Big 3 candidates go at each other.

Paul and Tamar started bashing Chris for her big money donations from outside CD 2.
Tamar also went off on Chris about her support for SB 1818 while involved with the CCA, yet flip-flopping on the campaign trail and saying she never supported it.

Essel was not good with her response, brushing them both off by saying "I find the whole attack on me disingenuous."

Mantle started to ruin Tamars day by bringing up the LAUSD flier controversy and asking her if she didn't do it to "enhance her candidacy."

"The Ethics Commission told us we couldn't use it on anything other than LAUSD things," she responded. Tamar kind of stumbled around on this answer, but generally denied any wrong doing. Paul and Chris were clearly not convinced.

Essel slammed into Paul for paying for his hack political consultants for this CD 2 race out of his State Assembly money funds. Krekorian was stunned by this accusation.

"I have no idea what she is talking about!, " he said in disbelief.

Essel hit harder. "It is on your disclosure form, Paul! Eric Hacopian and others are being paid!!"

Paul was blindsided by this attack. "I would like to respond to this bizarre statement about 'slush funds' by Miss Essel. She shows a reckless disregard for the truth," he added, in lawyer-like escapist talk.

Krekorian stumbled and bumbled around, unable to deny the payments ...but eventually excused himself by saying they were payments for "old debts." Terrible response by Paul. Best thing about this show was that all three of them eventually looked bad. Their rivals pointed out their flaws for all to see.

HIGHLIGHT OF THE SHOW: Michael McCue called into the show! I was ready for him to unload on Larry, but unfortunately it sounded like Michael was driving and his cell phone connection wasn't very good and you couldn't hear him too well. He did get out the phrase " Excluding the grassroots candidates.." quite clearly.

Mantle made some pathetic excuse about "reaching critical mass" with other candidates.

Here's a hot Mayor Sam tip for Larry Mantle....

Larry, you might want to walk down the hall and have a chat with a very classy lady named Patt Morrison who works the at KPCC. (She's kind of famous...I think you might already know her.)

WAY, way back in March 2009 - when TEN Candidates were running for the office of Mayor of Los Angeles, Patt set aside a separate day for each candidate and interviewed them each for about 15 minutes.

I know it's complicated. Ask Patt to explain it to you. She is a sweet lady and has a lot of patience.
I'm sure she will help you out.


Anonymous Anonymous said:

Phil, you and Zuma Dogg helped the Mayor win by a landslide by looking like such idiots as "candidates." You are not an example to emulate.

September 21, 2009 12:07 PM  

Blogger Joseph Mailander said:

Phil, interview shows aren't obliged to extend equal time.

The main reason I covered the mayoral candidates to the extent I did is that I knew local media wouldn't. And they didn't. The same thing has happened in this race.

One thing it's fair to ask KPCC is how they determined hosting the candidates they did in this interview. The listeners have a right to know, especially with KPCC, a public station.

September 21, 2009 12:18 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

It should surprise no one that Larry Mantle would limit the program to the mayor's three candidates. Larry still has the vapors over "the first Latino mayor of Los Angeles since 1872." (Even Roderick is over that one.)

September 21, 2009 12:37 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Joseph --
Do you have a citation to a regulation or statute for that assertion?

This strikes me as a violation of the FCC equal time rules. The station is not covering a private event that excluded candidates. Rather, this station -- itself funded with public money -- has decided to conduct a forum from which it excluded most candidates.

This is not my legal field, and I haven't researched it, but this coverage of just three candidates does not pass the "smell" test.

September 21, 2009 12:50 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

I answered my own question: Joseph appears to be correct. Here's the relevant statute:


It still smells, though.

September 21, 2009 12:53 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

On the other hand....

The statute refers to a BONA FIDE NEWS interview. This isn't really a bona fide news interview, is it? I mean, it's not like he ran into them at City Hall.

This is a rigged forum.

I therefore find in favor of Mr. Jennerjahn, and grant a TRO requiring Mantel and the station to provide equal time to the other candidates forthwith.


September 21, 2009 12:57 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Don't forget guys, phil dropped out of law school. At least AV finished.

September 21, 2009 12:59 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I thought Walter said he wasn't going to post here anymore. I understand if he wants to jump out with comments about Mary, but I hope he is not back as overall big mouth on every issue.

September 21, 2009 1:18 PM  

Blogger Phil Jennerjahn said:

From Wikipedia....

The equal-time rule specifies that U.S. radio and television broadcast stations must provide an equivalent opportunity to any opposing political candidates who request it. This means, for example that if a station gives one free minute to a candidate on the prime time, it must do the same for another candidate.
However, there are four exceptions: if the air-time was in a documentary, bona fide news interview, scheduled newscast or an on-the-spot news event the equal-time rule is not valid.

This was a pre-planned forum that excluded 70% of the candidates.

What KPCC did was dirty. Period.

Spin it any way you like.

September 21, 2009 1:21 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Walter we don't care what you have to say. You actually thought at one point that you were going to get more votes than Villaragosa in a run off.
You didn't even force a run off. And you were not able to make your initiative on the ballot.
You hot air emmissions are adding to global warming. Please stick to your own turf where you do not turn people off.
I know a lot of people think you are where it is at. Cater to those people. We just don't like you around here.

September 21, 2009 1:29 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Let me remind all you folks...
1/ When Arnold ran for Governor, NONE of his films were aired on Television in California. (Also there were issues over a painting on the side of a building seen from the 101 near Universal.

2/ When Fred Thompson ran for President NONE of his LAW AND ORDER episodes ran on NBC or in Rerun on TNT.

Those weren't news shows. Those were time fairness issues.

Sshame on KPCC

September 21, 2009 1:30 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Phil, anyone can and does edit and sabotage Wikipedia all the time, especially of politicians. I concur with person who told you to stop quoting Wikipedia as the authoritative source on anything.

September 21, 2009 1:34 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Dear Naive Phil:

It isn't spin. It's the law.

If you want to find out, file a lawsuit or complaint, and get rich on attorney's fees and punitive damages.

You answered revealed your own mistake with the Wikipedia citation. The station was not giving the 3 candidates free air time for their commercials. This is a news/public affairs program.

Of course you could have checked this out before your posted your piece.

September 21, 2009 1:38 PM  

Blogger Joseph Mailander said:

Phil, what is dirty and what "violates" a law--and the interview law was inserted by Congress in the Eisenhower years--are two different matters. I just wanted to clarify: Larry Mantle is not obliged to extend equal time by any law. Whether it's "dirty" not to do so is another matter, and one I hope other candidates will consider.

One of the things political consultants kept telling me when you guys were running for Mayor is that a media organization needs to spell out a policy that will determine what might trigger a candidate appearance or coverage. The rules can be arbitrary, but they should be spelled out, whether it's based on polling, finance, or even media buys. It's up to a broadcaster's listeners to hold them accountable: if these candidates think it's a big enough deal, they're free denounce KPCC for excluding them.

Of our local public broadcasters, KCRW has been going downhill for about a decade, and it's all because Ruth Seymour bought into people who make their living airing dirty media laundry rather than covering actual news and who can be depended on to pimp for locals in power, whomever they may be. KPCC hasn't been going down so fast because Mantle is far more politically agile and far less patronizing. But it does appear that Mantle's become a little more gunshy than he used to be.

And to follow up on that point, speaking of pimping for locals in power: nobody has gone soft more quickly than Patt Morrison. I can't believe that I just heard that Nahai canceled his appearance onher show ("too busy dealing with the crisis") and Patt scratched his back by not even mentioning him and apologized for him. Yes, KPCC has gone soft in the past few months. And it's really time for people to call them out on it.

September 21, 2009 1:40 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Wow! The staffers are grumpy! Hey, boss-man needs a Lister-Mint strip. Chop chop, or you'll be back on the leaf-blower.

September 21, 2009 2:25 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

If you're voting for any of the “Big 3” (Chris Essel, Paul Krekorian, Tamar Galatzan) its a wasted vote.

Don't be fooled by the wolves dressed in wool.

September 21, 2009 3:31 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Who in the world would believe a law school dropout who quotes from WIKIPEDIA and doesn't bother to do his homework.

NO SURPRISE that Phil couldn't handle FIRST YEAR work at Whittier Law School.

Whatever the case, I DO value what Walter has to say. Hey, Zuma Dogg said he wasn't coming back to city hall after losing the mayor's race, and that's cool. Walter can say he's done with this blog, but if he has something to say, I'm willing to listen.


September 21, 2009 3:58 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Jennerjahn: Paid for By Chris Essel for City Council.

September 21, 2009 4:17 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Hey, PHIL is the one who spotted the issue -- and I think he's right. He may want to consider going back to law school.

September 21, 2009 4:49 PM  

Blogger Michael Higby said:

Walter give it a rest. Your act is so 2005.

For a guy who thinks he's better than Phil and Zuma Dogg you sure have to continue to recycle all your insults from the campaign.

Where is the hostility coming from? Do you still think they cost you votes?

No Walter, you and you alone cost you votes.

Now try not to do to the same to Mary Benson.

September 21, 2009 5:34 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


She's the one with the ugly hats.

September 21, 2009 5:35 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Higby --

One of us is confused, and I'm pretty sure it's you.

Votes that went to Phil or Zuma did not "cost" me anything. Any vote for any candidate other than Villaraigosa helped increase the odds of a run-off. You understand that, right?

As for the candidates' credentials, I do indeed believe I am far more qualified than Zuma or Phil to serve as Mayor, based on objective measures of qualifications, in particular, education and professional licensing. If I sincerely believed anyone else running was more qualified, believe me, I would have been HAPPY to write 'em a check and have all my free time to myself.

I do fault the local media for lumping me together with the other candidates. I had been excluded from debates in 2005 on the grounds that I had not qualified for matching funds. So this time, I raised enough to qualify for matching funds. Yet the media treated me exactly the same as the candidates who did not raise any money. That was indeed frustrating.

Am I everyone's cup of tea? Nope. But I think it's fair to say my supporters and I did an outstanding job. Villaraigosa spent 15 times more money, but got only twice as many votes.

Anyhow, I'm never running for anything again -- except maybe a bus or a flight. But I hope more people -- like Mary, and the other business owners running for office -- will step up to the plate.

And seriously, if anyone wants to buy a nice house in Carthay Circle for $1 million contact me. I would love to get out while the getting is good.

As for "insulting" Phil or Zuma, I don't recall "insulting" them at all. I pointed out the differences in their qualifications and mine. All candidates were not created equal; never are. I was the best candidate. Deal with it. Or not. I really don't care. I'd just like to see someone good elected tomorrow.

September 21, 2009 7:33 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Michael 3;58
Why all the animosity towards Walter Moore?

From what I've read [don'tknow him personally] he always has a valid and rational point to make.

And of course he stands heads over someone who is not gainfully employed,let alone without higher education. That's not insulting. It's just fact.

Please don't get so thin-skinned as Zuma. Two of you on one blog would be unbearable.

September 21, 2009 9:02 PM  

Blogger Phil Jennerjahn said:

As far as things between me and Walter Moore...

I took a few shots at him around election time.
He was my rival then and we were competing for the same job. He took a few shots at me, too. I'm not upset about any of it.

That is politics. I accept it.
Conflict is part of the gameplan.

Time has passed and I don't bear Walter any ill will. I actually think he should come back to politics and maybe even back to Mayor Sam.

I hope he stays active in city politics instead of quitting and leaving. I think the city is better off for having had him around.

Same goes for Zuma Dogg.

September 21, 2009 9:21 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

KPCC is a public radio station and therefore funded by we the people. And since it is funded by us (though the most of the public radio audience usually leans left) they should have included all of the candidates, not just the big 3.

September 21, 2009 9:52 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Kum-by-ya. What a great feeling. Losers such as Walter Miller, Phil Jennerjahn and Zuma Dogg are now pals. The lion will sleep better tonight.

September 21, 2009 10:25 PM  

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