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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Mayor Sam's Hotsheet for Tuesday

Photo by Ted Soqui, LA Weekly

 Chalk up a victory for the billboard wackos.  A federal judge has upheld for a now the City Council's ban on billboards and supergraphics despite the fact most real people don't care. Despite the setback for Liberty Media Corp. a City Attorney's office official says that the case could eventually go forward.  Additionally another 20 lawsuits against the city are pending.  How much will that cost and are the billboard wackos prepared to pony up?

Tired of illegal dumping and other reportable to 311 woes in your neighborhood? If you have an Apple iPhone, Curbed LA reports you can use the device to snap photos and upload the complaint directly to City computers.  The CitySource app can read your GPS position and easily tag the issue for City action.

Voter turnout in the recent CD2 election was abysmally low as are most City elections. One solution may be to follow the lead of cities like Burbank and states like Oregon who conduct elections by mail only.  Though LA's City Clerk has recomended this move for some time, the Clowncil has been relucatant to consider it.  Always on top of things City Councilman Bill "Open Shirt" Rosendahl told Rick Orlov "I really regret the low turnout, but that's what happens in these elections when there is so little media attention." Yea, it's the media's fault Bill.

As DWP infrastructure continues to crumble, more signs of the coming appocalypse following years of shoddy management and stealing from the utility by the City Council.  A short power outage of unknown origin hit Downtown LA Monday striking many skyscrapers causing stuck elevators and the like. Then, another water main broke, this time in the Miracle Mile discontinuing service to about four dozen homes.

And finally things continue to get curiouser in the recent defacing of a mural of Mayor Villaraigosa in East Hollywood.  As previously noted here on the blog, vandals splashed the face of the Mayor with red paint and scrawled on the sidewalk below the mural "This is Our Town."  LA Weekly photographer Ted Soqui revisited the mural last Friday and see that someone has painted the word vendido on the Mayor's shirt collar, a term that is Spanish for "sell-out" or "Uncle Tom."  The Weekly reports that the red paint and "our town" remain but "vendido" has since been removed.

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Anonymous Anonymous said:

Most people do not care about the billboards? I disagree.

There are plenty of people that care and do not want the city to be turned into another NY or Las Vegas.

September 29, 2009 7:24 AM  

Blogger Michael Higby said:

Go to Starbucks and ask anyone who is not over 50. They will not care.

September 29, 2009 8:21 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Michael Higby said... Go to Starbucks and ask anyone who is not over 50. They will not care.

Go to a Ralphs, and ask anyone, of any age group, and they will care. It's only the self-indulgent genX-ers that frequent Starbucks that don't care.

September 29, 2009 10:30 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Don't get fooled by vbm elections. There are all sorts of problems with that idea. First, incumbents and insiders almost always win because most people vote as soon as they get their ballots and they miss the campaign which often convinces them of the need for change.

Second, there are all sorts of risks to the integrity of the system. No one can say if a person cast a ballot by mail, so it's easy to sneak in a fraudulent ballot.

But the worst (and the most common) problem with the system is you get things like husbands pressuring wives or parents pressuring children on how to vote. It's a constant problem in the places that have this system.

As for increased turnout, after an election or two where turnout goes up because of the novelty, it goes right back down to where it was before the system is put in place. It's not that hard to vote, people just don't think their choices will make a difference.

September 29, 2009 10:53 AM  

Anonymous Paul Hatfield said:

Most people under 50 do not care about anything local. Just look at the attendees at most NC meetings and candidate forums. It's not exactly a fraternity party.

I have done some canvassing at Starbucks and other coffee houses. The average customers are clueless on any issue and can give a rip. I no longer waste my time reaching out at those establishments.

Apathy rules. Until we can make inroads with the 85% of voters who do not show up for local elections, we are doomed.

September 29, 2009 11:23 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Most voters don't vote and many people of voting age don't register because they see the politicians are irrelevant.

September 29, 2009 11:44 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Most people who care about the city -- who care about quality of life and the environment -- are concerned about the proliferation of visual blight. Unfortunately, the greater percentage of the potential electorate seems not to actually "CARE" about anything. Or, at least, not when to comes to paying attention to what is happening and to participating in the electoral process.

Which may in fact be what many elected officials want.....

September 29, 2009 2:12 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

We don't need mail only elections. If people are not interested it won't matter if evryone votes by mail or only those who wish to vote early do it. The People who don't care enough to put their ballot in the mailbox deserve exactly what they get. How much hand holding do they need?

September 29, 2009 6:05 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

There's no doubt the recent elections in march and may were skewed by mostly elderly, conservative to traditional- moderate homeowners who went to the polls to oppose taxes: measure B in March and the State Props in May. Plus the "pitchforks and torches" brigade of the radio rightwing ranters, largely the same bunch but adding the anti- immigrant bunch.

Since the CD2 election was a stand- alone issue, the anti-tax people didn't have an issue to get them to the ballot, so mailings by the main, best-funded candidates had a lot more impact. Anyone who handed out absentee ballots at old folks' homes, apts and senior centers and so on, would have also had a huge leg up. Conversely, in the March/ may elections, the more liberal, union-funded candidates didn't seem to get out that demographic via absentee. ironic, because everyone was talking about how the mayor gets ACORN and such to the booths, but they did not bus to the polls or use absentee, and young people are generally too lazy and apathetic. Obama was an exception.

September 29, 2009 9:35 PM  

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