Whistleblower hotline: (213) 785-6098

Monday, November 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Christine Essel

IBEW Independent Expenditure: $650K and growing
Doheny Estates home (not in CD2): $1.5 million and up
Having rich neighbors who can throw you a birthday fundraiser: Priceless

There are some things money can't buy for everything else there's doing end runs around ethics rules.

You are invited to celebrate the birthday and candidacy of

Christine Essel

At the home of

Dan Clivner & Steve Cochran

9220 Robin Drive, Los Angeles, CA
December 3rd, 2009

6 - 8 pm
Requested contribution:
$500 - sponsor
$250 - ticket

Please RSVP to Niko Consulting 213-346-0413 - loubna@nikoconsulting.com


Evening Briefs and Outtakes on Mayor Villaraigosa's Travels "South of the Border" and News from CD 2, Sacramento and 710 Tunnel Stuff

" The cliches never change when it comes to Mexico, for Mayor Villaraigosa"
In case you didn't notice, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is out of country again, expousing the virtues of "Ciudad de Los Angeles".
This time, his travels (paid by us of course) take him south of the U.S. border to Mexico as the LA Times Phil Willon reports.
While traveling in Mexico today, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa took a swipe at efforts to build a massive fence along the U.S.-Mexico border, saying U.S. politicians should spend their time building bridges instead of walls, the Associated Press reported.
“We should focus on what we have in common instead of focusing on our differences,” Villaraigosa said after a meeting with Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard. On Sunday, Villaraigosa met with Mexican President Felipe Calderón at the National Palace. Before the mayor was given a tour, the two discussed immigration and public safety issues, according to a representative of the mayor’s office.
Villaraigosa’s trip to Mexico started Thursday, when he led a delegation of authors, artists, filmmakers and musicians to the 2009 Guadalajara International Book Fair, where Los Angeles had been declared the guest of honor.
A $2.1-million grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs paid for the delegation’s trip to Guadalajara, including travel expenses for four staff members from the mayor’s office and a dozen from Cultural Affairs. Councilman Jose Huizar and City Librarian Martin Gomez also were part of the delegation.
The mayor’s trip to Mexico City cost an estimated $8,600 and was paid for by Villaraigosa’s office and Los Angeles World Airports, the city agency that oversees Los Angeles International Airport.
It's unclear what source of funds will be used to pay the travel expenses of the mayor's LAPD security detail.

Also nice to note that since since the start of his second term as Mayor, Villaraigosa has been out of country on an average of one in six days. Talk about hands on leadership.

** The latest rounds of numbers are out from the Ethics Commission, regarding financial contributions to the CD 2 Special Election Candidates Paul Krekorian and Chris Essel. As they debate this evening in their supposed last debate in Valley Village. Krekorian holds a slight edge in 'hands on cash" while Essel is reaping the latest financial windfall from the Police Protective League.

Los Angeles Police Protective League PAC Los Angeles, CA 90017 (Independent Expenditure) Support Christine Essel City Council Member - District 02 Chris Essel for City Council 2009 - General (1321633)[Election: 12/08/09] 11/30/09 11/30/09 Radio Buy #3 RADSC-6 $60,000.00

Los Angeles Police Protective League PAC Los Angeles, CA 90017 (Independent Expenditure) Support Christine Essel City Council Member - District 02 Chris Essel for City Council 2009 -General (1321633)[Election: 12/08/09] 11/30/09 11/30/09 Cable buy #3 TVSC-4 $44,099.00

Meamwhile Krekorian is seing some independent money come his way.

Service Employees International Union Local 721 CTW, CLC State & LocalLos Angeles, CA 90020 (Independent Expenditure) Support Paul Krekorian City Council Member - District 02 Krekorian for City Council 2009 - General (1321819)[Election: 12/08/09] 11/28/09
11/27/09 Printing, Production, and Postage MAIL-1 $4,435.00

Service Employees International Union Local 721 CTW, CLC State & LocalLos Angeles, CA 90020 (Independent Expenditure) Support Paul Krekorian City Council Member - District 02 Krekorian for City Council 2009 - General (1321819)[Election: 12/08/09] 11/28/09
11/28/09 Phone banking (estimate) $3,600.00

United Firefighters Of Los Angeles City Local Union #112 Los Angeles, CA 90026 (Independent Expenditure) Support Paul Krekorian City Council Member - District 02 Krekorian for City Council 2009 - General (1321819)[Election: 12/08/09] 11/24/09 11/25/09 Literature/Postage MAIL-2 $7,772.25

** From today's Daily News City Hall Scribe Rick Orlov "Tipoff Column",

The biggest insider game being played in Sacramento these days is over who will succeed Assembly Speaker Karen Bass.

Bass wants to follow the procedure she agreed with in taking over from former Speaker Fabian Nunez, with a lengthy transition period, beginning in January when she hopes the Democratic caucus will agree with her.

But, two members, Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes of Van Nuys and Kevin De Leon of Hollywood, are aggressively trying to get commitments to back them as the next speaker.

Then there is this wildcard candidate.

Democratic caucus members have been looking at a third choice, Assemblyman John Perez, D-Los Angeles.

Perez, who is a cousin of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, would be the first openly gay member to serve as speaker. This state is doomed.

** From the "Concerned Neighbors of El Sereno" regarding the "710 Tunnel Proposal".

Dear Neighbors,

As you may have heard, a Resolution on the 710 Tunnel Portal in El Sereno is being reviewed by the Information Technology & Government Affairs Committee; after which LA City Council will take their recommendation for their vote. If this Resolution fails to pass, the location of the portal will remain in the residential community of El Sereno, over 200 Caltrans homes will be destroyed, and at least 100 more residents will be displaced between Alhambra Ave. & Huntington Dr. Not to mentioned, the noise, vibration, lighting, air & odor pollution, dirt, soil & muck,neighborhood & traffic disruption, hundreds of thousands of truck-trips/year, and elevated risks and impacts for up to12 years of construction.

We NEED SUPPORT at the following 2 meetings to show the ITGA Committee and LA City Council that we NEED this Resolution PASSED.

ITGA Committee meeting - Tuesday, December 1, City Hall, 1st & 3rd street, Room 1010, at 2:00

LA City Council - will consider this Resolution on Friday, December 4th mtg, Location: (Live) San Fernando, (via telecon) City Hall, Time 10:00 AM

Hope to see you all there,
Val Marquez

Your thoughts.................

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Los Angeles Politics Hotsheet for Monday

 Guadalajara International Book Fair

All hell breaking loose in LA and the Mayor is traveling once again, this time south of the border down old Mexico way. But its city work he'll be inspecting a book fair pavilion built in Guadalajara with millions of dollars of your money.  That's the part the old fishwrap scribes forgot to tell you. You may remember when, much to the Clowncil's chagrin, that it was this blog that broke the story of this wasteful and misplaced spending. (And before you race baiters have a cow this would be wasteful and wrong whether the book fair is in Mexico, Luxembourg, Tokyo or Pasadena.)

It's become a way of life.  Water main breaks over the holiday weekend Saturday in Hancock Park and Sunday in Highland Park.  Perhaps if the DWP wasn't so busy trying to elect Chris Essel they could do their job.

We sat on this story when we first became aware of it because it just seem so unbelievable but Paul Hatfield reports that CD2 Candidate Paul Krekorian's home in Valley Glen was recently stalked by  suspicious figure.  Witnesses told police they spotted and confronted an Anglo man who appeared to be between the ages of 40 to 50 stalking around taking photographs outside the home. Photos of this home have shown up in Essel campaign literature. While it is not clear if the individual is directly involved with the Chris Essel campaign it is a possible sign how far this campaign has gone. Krekorian filed a report with the LAPD and sent a letter to Essel urging her to keep her campaign operatives away from his family.

Speaking of CD2 Paul Krekorian appears to be winning in the online wars. On the social networking site Facebook, Krekorian has 2944 friends while Chris Essel only has 310.

SLAP Happy members of AARP and other suburban cranks think that medical marijuna and digital billboards are the scourge of LA life when anyone under 50 will tell what LA needs is jobs and commerce (notice as businesses leave the City's financial condition worsens?).  Now Mayor Villaraigosa is the latest AARP member on board with this nuttiness while Nuch's and Cooley's Barney Fife like obsession with it all is making Republicans look even worse than we already do!

The ever classy Betty Pleasant continues her jihad against Councilman Bernard Parks.  This time when the Councilman was correct to bring up ethics issues around the appointment of Angela Reddock to the City's Fire and Police Pension Board Ms. Pleasant for sure saw a conspiracy.  At issue was Reddock's refusal to disclose various clients she represents.  At a time when the city's pensions are a mess there is nothing more vital than full transparency from those who will provide oversight.

And finally, please take a few moments to read an excellent post from Central City East Blogger Don Garza. Don, who wrote for years from a tough existence living in SRO housing in Skid Row, has recently bootstrapped himself into better living conditions and is on a determined mission to better his life.  Don talks about not really feeling like he ever fit into the lifestyle of Skid Row and even less so now when he visits.  Garza writes "I am skid row adjacent, but am living in a different culture where social norms are followed, where there are consequences to what we do, where civility can have it's day. Skid Row was not like that."  Memo to local journos; your pub may want to buy this piece from Don.

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Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Picture You Won't See From The Essel Campaign

Community Leaders from across CD2 gather at a round-table meeting and BBQ hosted today by Paul Krekorian to discuss the upcoming election and the ongoing efforts by deep pocket special interests to buy the CD2 seat for Chris Essel.

Paul had invited community leaders from around CD2 to discuss the election and the ongoing misinformation coming from the Essel Camp. Also a big topic was the lawsuit filed by the DWP union (IBEW) to overturn a 20 year old ethics law in order for them to give even more money to Chris Essel. A Judge wisely tossed out that effort last week. Everyone got a good laugh out of Essel's latest flier attacking Paul for raising a million dollars. What the flier doesn't say is that Paul raised a million dollars during the course of four separate campaigns over the years!! Chris has raised $1.5 Million in just the last 6 months for a City Council seat. Somebody wants the developers friend, Essel, in office very badly!

What you won't see from the Essel campaign is a picture of her campaign office filled with volunteers. Instead, according to our source who visited her office today, you will see a room with 2 paid staffers. Be on watch for a staged photo from her in the coming days.

More News: Paul has just received another endorsement. Read about it HERE.

Painters Local DC 36 Political Director Robert Smith refutes ACORN Claim in CD 2 Special Election

Last Sunday, we notice this interesting comment.
Anonymous said...
ACORN is working for Chris Essel in CD2. They are apparently being paid by the Painters Union according to one of their walkers.
November 22, 2009 8:32 PM

At the time we reported that this was only speculation, others had commented that "street walkers" for the Chris Essel campaign, in red shirts, were going door to door, in search of votes. Whether they were ACORN members, that was not definitively confirm.

But what was "fact check" was this financial contribution in support of Chris Essel, via the Ethics Commission Website .

International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Washington, DC 20006 (Independent Expenditure) Support Christine Essel City Council Member - District 02 Chris Essel for City Council 2009 - General (1321633) [Election: 12/08/09] 11/19/09 11/18/09GOTV Activities to include phone banks and ** door-to-door mobilization TELSC-1 $58,078.00

So the question is this, who is being paid to go "door to door" by the Painters Union? Could it be United Farm Workers? Communist Party Members? Socialist Worker Party? But not ACORN right?

Then on Wednesday, we get this response from one "Robert Smith" of Painters DC 36.

Anonymous said...
Red Spot the PAINTERS UNIONS IE program has not started to walk yet phone calls only We will be walking GOTV 150 200 members no ACORN FOLK will be involved please get the facts right Robert Smith Painters DC 36
November 27, 2009 5:45 PM
Who is Robert Smith? we found this, which may highlight why they are invested with Mayor Villaraigosa's "vessel of choice" in the CD 2 Special Election.
District Council 36 is part of a coalition which includes Building & Construction Trade Unions, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, the UCLA Labor Center, the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy, and faith-based community groups with an endorsement from 120 ministers,who have been working for more than two years to create an historic policy in the City of Los Angeles. Under the landmark Construction Careers and Project Stabilization Policy projects, whether public or private, receiving subsidies, tax credits or direct monies from the Community Redevelopment Agency/ LA will be required to comply with the new Project Labor Agreement. Among the components of the PLA is a requirement that developers and contractors hire workers through union-run hiring halls.
Robert Smith, Political Director of DC 36 (one can see picture of Smith shaking hands with an "certain Mayor"), said the two-year process brought labor, business, and community groups together.“The benefits of this policy will be tremendous for all parties involved, especially for the youth in our communities who will have an opportunity for training and a career they can be proud of.”
Then there is the amount of money involve with this deal.
The Project Labor Agreement will cover $15 billion of upcoming work through the Community Redevelopment Agency/LA, with similar agreements expected shortly with the Los Angeles Board of Public Works and the Los Angeles Harbor Commission.
As we noted last week, one can Google "International Union of Painters and Allied Trades and ACORN" and find numerous examples of collaborations between the two organizations.
So why would Robert Smith post his comment on a thread where there is no mention of ACORN? Maybe because its true and this fact would reinforce the past links of ACORN and Mayor Villaraigosa?
Your thoughts.............
BTW, if anyone can verify ACORN members working for Chris Essel, please send a e-mail to redspotincd14@yahoo.com.

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Friday, November 27, 2009

How To Win in CD2

Instead of bombarding the voters' mailboxes with 5-7 mailers a day attacking your opponent, get off your butt and actually work for your potential constituents.

The following letter was sent on Thursday to Greg Bartz at the DWP by Paul Krekorian :

Subject: Station Fire impacts on Sunland Tujunga community

Dear Mr. Bartz:

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm writing this on the holiday, and I realize you won't receive it until Monday, but I hope the holiday weekend was an enjoyable one for you and your family.

As you may know, I am one of the two candidates for Council in the Second District. The next Councilmember will not be sworn in until sometime after the December 8 election results are certified. Unfortunately, the District is facing very urgent needs right now that cannot wait until the new member can take charge; and, there are significant concerns about which the new member will need to hit the ground running from Day One.

Among the most urgent of these issues is the aftermath of the Station Fire and its impacts on the Sunland-Tujunga community. I know that there have been some steps taken in preparation for the inevitable debris flow problems that will come with the first rain. I've been keeping up to date on the progress of preparations by a number of departments, but I'd like to know what steps DWP has taken in preparation for the mudslides and debris problems. I assume there will be a risk of power outages and possibly water supply issues resulting from significant slides, large-scale debris movement and flooding resulting from storm drain failure. I would appreciate your letting me know what assessment DWP has made of these or other potential risks, and what preparations the Department is making in anticipation of them.

Also, the area has been facing significant, unusual and unfair rate impacts resulting from the fire. Throughout the days that this horrendous fire raged adjacent to their neighborhoods, homeowners in the area struggled to save their homes from embers by watering down their roofs and landscape. In the period after the fire, many were impacted by the mess resulting from the firefighting operations, also requiring vast amounts of additional personal water use. And even today, residents of the entire area are still dealing with ash and unusual dust from the fire area, resulting in still more water usage.

I have not yet heard of any process by which DWP addresses residents' extraordinary water usage during, and resulting from, natural disasters like this. I would be interested in hearing from you at your earliest convenience about this issue. I believe strongly that residents who have already suffered so much impact from the fire itself should not now also have to suffer the impacts of exorbitant water bills, including even moving into higher rate tiers.

I look forward to hearing from you on these two issues, and I look forward to working closely with you to serve the interests of the people of Sunland-Tujunga as the community continues to recover from this terrible disaster. Thank you in advance for your anticipated assistance.

Very truly yours,

Paul Krekorian
Candidate for City Council, Second District


Doug McIntyre on WABC 770 AM from New York this Evening

" Former KABC 790 AM Morning Host Doug Mcintyre"
For those who miss the erudite, comedic wit that was former KABC 790 AM morning host Doug McIntyre, he is currently on live (as of 6:20 PM) from New York's WABC 770 AM, where he is playing the role of "holiday fill-in" for Curtis Sliwa. Air time is 9 PM-1 AM east coast time which translate to 6-10 PM our time.
The show replays locally on KABC 790 AM from 12-3:00 AM in the early AM.
Here is hoping that Doug makes his way back on the local airwaves in the near future.


How will the Outcome in the CD 2 Special Election, "Affect the Legacies" of these Two-Term Mayors?

A former and current mayor in search of their "floundering vessel" in CD 2.

Los Angeles could be facing a $1-billion deficit by the time Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa wraps up his second term in 2013, a dire forecast driven primarily by escalating employee pension costs and stagnate tax revenues, the city’s top budget analyst said today.

Reading this, I could not help but to think back to former Mayor Richard Riordan's comments, some time back on KFI's John and Ken Show, in which he called out Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's fiscal policies and administrated acumens, or lack of.

Riordan, who served two-terms as Mayor from 1993-2001, cited that during his time in office, the city saw an increase of revenue to city coffers of $1 Billion dollars, that was achieved without raising taxes or fees.

The irony here is that Riordan endorsed Villaraigosa over Mayor James Hahn in the 2005 Mayoral Runoff. Many observers saw this union as one crafted by pro-development interests, who saw a Mayor Villaraigosa administration as the vessel to forward their plans to "remake" Los Angeles into the west coast version of Manhattan, New York.

Now in late 2009, with the economy in the dump, increases in trash fees, DWP rates, phone taxes a reality, Chief Bill Bratton now history, and Mayor Villaraiogosa building upon his "legacy of foreign travel" with hizzoner's latest trip to Mexico, is it time to start the Mayor Villaraigosa's legacy watch? How would the legacy of former Mayor Riordan be affected by his past and current collaborations with Villaraigosa?

One only need to look at the upcoming CD 2 Special Election to see how the outcome will effect the legacies of both. Local political observers were of the opinion that the relationship between both Riordan and Villaraigosa had cool after the fallout of Villaraigosa's affair with Mirthala Salinas. Further, Riordan's appearance on the "John and Ken Show", help to fuel the speculation that the rift between Villaraigosa and "Riordan's Posse" of Eli Broad, Bill Wardlaw and Steve Soboroff, had become more pronounced.

But one can surmise that the needs of both parties to reinvigorate revenues to their respective developer friends, had brought the groups together again to forward the cause of electing Chris Essel to City Council in CD 2.

This reunion of these two pro-development factions, joined by the likes of IBEW, unions, the Police Protective League and ACORN, mixed in with $One Million + of cash, can be viewed as an expensive endeavor to maintain the alliance of unions, developers, affordable housing advocates, and other temporary allies, who want to maintain their stranglehold on City Hall and thus, continue their quest to remake Los Angeles into "Manhattan West", with its version of "Tammany Hall", to dispense the "spoils".

One can agree that some sort of development, whether it is redevelopment of blighted areas, transportation improvements, business recruitment, is needed to recharge the flow of revenue to City Hall. But unlike Riordan, who reinvigorated the local economy after the disastrous 1992 riots by removing onerous regulations, creating one stop permit centers and not raising taxes. Mayor Villaraigosa has chased business and the middle class away from the city in droves, with his pursuit of a progressive agenda (affordable housing, environmental regulations, rampant development, costly union contracts and higher taxes), that has had an regressive affect on the cities tax base and quality of living.

One can look back upon the past Mayor Riordan Administration as being a time of urban renewal and economic growth, after the 1992 riots. Most will agree that Los Angeles was in a better state after Riordan left office in 2001. But in the subsequent years, Riordan's success as Mayor, has not transfare to success in other political pursuits, losing a race for governor in 2002 and endorsing the likes of Steve Soboroff and Bob Hertzberg for mayor only to see them lose to James Hahn in 2001 and Antonio Villaraigosa in 2005, respectively. His support for City Council candidates has met with only one, Bill Rosendahl 2005, being elected to a seat on the "horseshoe", while the likes of Monica Rodriguez in 2007 and Adeena Bleich this year, losing to Richard Alarcon and Paul Koretz.

Now the legacy of these two-term mayors are intertwined again, reunited in their joint pursuit of maintaining the "status quo" at City Hall that benefits the "exclusive few" at the expense of an dwindling middle class that once was the foundation, to paraphrase the late actor Jack Webb's Dragnet Sgt. Friday character, of "seven suburbs in search of a voice on Spring Street".

In closing, will the support of ex. Mayor Riordan and Mayor Villaraigosa and their Special Interest "monetary splurge", pay off in victory for Chris Essel in CD 2 on December 8? Or will the voters trigger a "political earthquake" at City Hall by supporting Paul Krekorian, thus causing long-term damage to the legacies of Riordan and Villaraigosa? One may want to have their "political seismographs" on standby on the evening of December 8.

Your thoughts.................

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving Dum Dums!! With Affection

As many of us mix eating with hours of football, whether on T.V. or at your local park, lets remember to give thanks to those in our Armed Forces, who protect our rights to freely engage in political banter here at Mayor Sam.

But more important, this is time to reflect on the role of our respective family members, who are part of what we are on this special day.

Best wishes to all and may you and your families share a "day of thanks" in peace and happiness.

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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

LeBong's Highest Priority

Since when did a taxpayer funded "meet and greet" become high priority? Not to be a Scrooge and I'm always down for any good party - holiday or not - but it gets rather tiring when all you can get from the local electeds is news of their photo opps. Especially from the king of photo opps.

Can we seriously find someone to run against LeBong? Hell Chris Essel can when she loses CD2.  She'd fit in real well in Hancock Park!

I guess this isn't as bad though as HUIZAR'S WINTER WONDERLAND.  Which if memory serves me was cancelled this year, yes?

----- Original Message ----- From: "Alice Roth"
To: "Alice Roth"
Sent: Friday, November 20, 2009 8:00 PM
Subject: Please join us!

** High Priority **

Hello All,

Please join Councilmember Tom LaBonge
and Staff for our annual CD 4
Toluca Lake Holiday Open House!

Friday, December 4, 2009
5:00-8:00 p.m.

Toluca Lake District Office
10116 Riverside Drive, Suite 200
Toluca Lake, California 91602

Parking available behind the Wachovia Bank Building

Refreshments Will Be Served

Hope to see you.

Happy Holidays!


Alice Roth
Deputy District Director
Councilmember Tom LaBonge
Toluca Lake/North Hollywood
(818) 755-7894 phone
(818) 755-7637 fax
To subscribe to Tom's weekly email newsletter, send a request to: labonge.news@lacity.org


Phil Jennerjahn

Due to a number of issues I won't get into I have revoked Phil's permission to post articles on the blog.  Perhaps he will be able to again in the near future once we work through these matters.  In the meantime he's certainly welcome to post comments and participate as a reader.

I appreciate much of Phil's work but a few recent issues have forced me to take this drastic step.  Phil has his own blog which you may read at http://thejennerjahnreport.blogspot.com/.

Thank you.

Morning Briefs and Outtakes on Oversight of Gang Programs, Pot, Ron Kaye's Endorsement in CD 2 and other News

"Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his homeboys"
Why would Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa be so dismissive of the findings of City Councilman Tony Cardenas's Ad Hoc Committee on Gang Violence and Youth Development?
As reported in the Los Angeles Times, the committee stated that "the city of Los Angeles should create a standalone department of gang prevention and intervention instead of relying on the mayor's office to oversee anti-gang programs as it does now, according to a report released Monday".
Citing the need for greater financial oversight and improved collaboration between the city, law enforcement, courts, schools and social service agencies, the report called for a comprehensive change in the way the city addresses the root causes of gang violence. The Ad Hoc Committee on Gang Violence and Youth Development has been reviewing city gang initiatives for roughly four years.
The response from the Mayor's office was swift and defiant.

"The graduate students who wrote the report deserve an 'A' for effort, but at a time when we're working to deliver services more efficiently, creating a new government bureaucracy is driving the wrong way on a one-way street," said Matt Szabo, deputy chief of staff to Villaraigosa.

Szabo should get an "A" for spin with this response. But here is the real reason why the Mayor wanted to have direct oversight of the allocation of gang funding.

06/27/08 Maria Lourdes Calanche (Instructor, LA Community College District) Los Angeles, CA 90031 Antonio Villaraigosa Mayor 1305101 - Antonio R. Villaraigosa for Mayor 2009 A - Monetary Contribution Received (IND - Individual) [Period: 01/01/08-06/30/08] $1,000.00
Its all about money!! Or should we say the franchise fees?
We have posted here numerous times about the dubious dealings of the latest "connected non-profit" Legacy LA and their connections to close associates of Mayor Villaraigosa. (Dalila Sotelo, Lou Calanche, Jenny Krusoe, David Galaviz, Raul Estrada just to name a few).
A source has stated that Legacy LA is endanger of losing their Gang Reduction, Youth Development or "GRYD" contract due to "double counting". Legacy LA, as part of their GRYD contract, is require to work with 25 gang members and 25 youths who are potential gang members. But it seems that Legacy LA is trying to count the 25 potential gang members again as "gang members" on their reports to GRYD. Further community members are questioning whether the two intervention specialists, "George" and "Renee" are actually in the field doing their work.
In addition, the GRYD rep for the area "Eduardo" was recently terminated from his position with the city, Eduardo also was the on-site coordinator at Ramona Gardens Recreation Center, for the Mayor Villaraigosa's "Summer Night Lights" program.

According to a source close to the organization, Legacy LA did indeed lose their contract only to see it quickly reinstated by the Mayor's office. The employee "Renee", who was an close associate of Jenny Krusoe has lefted the organization, as has Jenny Krusoe. Further, some close to the Summer Night Lights program at Ramona Gardens have stated that "Eduardo" was terminated for his lack of supervision, in regards to the staff structure at Ramona Gardens.

It is clear in our reporting on Legacy LA, that politics played a major role in the creation of this organization (former Mayor staffer and now CRA employee Carlos Alvarado and Jenny Krusoe were the original front people) and one can surmise that Legacy LA was created solely for being a repository for future gang funding and thus, payouts in jobs to their associates.

Maybe that is why Matt Szabo was so "over the top" with his retort to Councilman Cardenas's committee report, after all, protecting the franchise fees to Mayor Villaraigosa is of paramount concern.

View the links below for e-mail documents obtain under the Public Records Act which highlight the political collusion behind the creation of Legacy LA.

Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 1
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 2
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 3
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 4
Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 5

Creation of a "Connected Non-Profit", Part 6


** Former Daily News Editor now blogger Ron Kaye, has posted his endorsement for Paul Krekorian in the CD 2 Special Election for City Council.

The city is at a crossroads.

We have seen how ordinary citizens could defeat the machine on Measure B in March, how it could pull together and elect Carmen Trutanich as City Attorney in May. So let's hand the mayor and the machine a third straight defeat in December by elected Paul Krekorian in CD2.

** Councilman Greig Smith and Dennis Zine, aka, "The Spring Street RINOS" have announced their endorsement of Chris Essel for the CD 2 City Council seat.

** Mayor Villaraigosa, Councilman Huizar and others associated with Aramark Turkey Giveaway fiasco at the Convention Center, might want to make nice to those hundreds of people who were denied their Turkeys. Chants of "WE WANT TURKEYS!!, WE WANT TURKEYS!!", mixed with images of "connected associates" of various public officials, driving off with turkeys without providing the require vouchers, is going to create a backlash.

** Speaking of turkeys, Mayor Villaraigosa and the City Council will get a financial reality check today.

The Los Angeles City Council today will get what is expected to be a sober briefing on the city's financial condition, a day after L.A.'s credit rating was downgraded. The city’s credit was downgraded by Fitch Ratings on $2.94 billion in debt, meaning that borrowing money will become more expensive for Los Angeles as it grapples with a $98-million current-year budget shortfall and faces the prospect of graver fiscal woes in the years ahead.

** This city continues to go to pot with Councilman Ed Reyes leading the way.

Dispensaries in Los Angeles could continue to accept cash for medical marijuana under a provision approved by the City Council on Tuesday, after it adopted language carefully crafted to maneuver past the city attorney's adamant position that state law bars the sale of the drug.

This from Councilman Ed "density" Reyes,

Several members harshly criticized the city attorney's office. Councilman Ed Reyes, who oversaw the effort to write an ordinance, accused the office of pressing "a political point of view that has nothing to do with objective advice."

** The LA Weekly chronicles how Los Angeles went to pot in an extensive must read by Patrick Range McDonald and Christine Pelisek, here is a passage on Eagle Rock residents interaction with their attentive councilperson.

Michael Larsen sought out Reyes, who had bottled up the regulations for years, never sending a plan to the City Council for a vote. When Larsen finally wangled a meeting with Reyes, he found himself facing a few city employees — and four marijuana activists, including Don Duncan.

“It was clearly lopsided,” Larsen says. After that, Larsen tried for three months to reach his council representative, Huizar, a former school board member who Larsen assumed would be on top of things. But Huizar — who has a personal staff of 26 people — ducked all of Larsen’s calls.

So Larsen came up with a little subterfuge of his own: He and another neighbor found out where Huizar was going to be appearing in public, and in April, “we ambushed him — at an Easter event. We walked up to him with a paper showing all the medical marijuana dispensaries in our community. We said, ‘What are you doing about it?’ He feigned shock.” More recently, Huizar’s office “asked me to please find out what is going on with them. I am happy to do it, to keep the thing moving. But it is just crazy, that it’s our responsibility to be on top of this stuff.”

Some will say that is the normal Huizar reaction to all issues.

Your thoughts and Happy Thanksgiving to all.

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Craig X. Rubin on Channel 7

The video takes a few seconds to load. Wait for it.
If you want to see it in a bigger window... go here to the ABC site.

I include this video because there are clips of the raid on Rubins location.

Get ready illegal dispensary owners. Nuch and Cooley are coming for you next!

Note to Craig X.....

It might be more helpful to your case if you didn't admit to being high during this interview.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Are you a member of "Team Chris"??

Mayor Sam readers know that the special election to fill the City Council seat in District 2 is coming up very soon. The vote will take place on Dec. 8th.

Above is a photo of some of the members of "Team Chris".

Some of the voters in CD 2 have decided to support a non-career politician. A joyous, optimistic businesswoman who carved her own career path before seeking office. A woman who has not lied to or abandoned voters. A woman who has the support of our local law enforcement. Business people who prefer lower taxes and higher employment rates support her also . These are all members of "Team Chris".

However, not all voters in CD 2 agree.

Some voters in CD 2 prefer a residency-averse, state-bankrupting, job-abandoning, opportunity-chasing, career-climbing, tantrum-throwing, profanity-using, hypocrisy-displaying, prisoner-releasing, freedom-stealing, budget-destroying Socialist .

These are voters who call themselves "Team Paul" .

Breaking: Judge upholds ethics laws to prevent Essel from overturning LAs clean money reforms.

United States Federal District Court Judge Dean Pregerson has tossed out the lawsuit filed by Brian Darcy's "Working Californians", on behalf of CD2 Candidate Christine Essel. The lawsuit sought to overturn a 24 year old ethics law that works to curtail undue financial influence in City elections. "Working Californians" had tried to frame the lawsuit as a free speech issue, but the Judge saw otherwise.

The lawsuit had been called "frivolous" by the Krekorian campaign. A spokesman for the Krekorian campaign expressed his delight at the ruling, and said that this was a "real blow" to the Essel campaign, and her army of lobbyist supporters.

In his ruling, Judge Dean Pregerson said:
“[Working Californians] has not provided any evidence that enforcement of the challenged contribution restrictions will effectively thwart its ability to make independent expenditures related to the upcoming city council runoff election. Working Californians is free to solicit contributions from as many donors as it likes, and assuming that no individual contribution exceeds the city’s $500 threshold, it can spend as much as it likes.”

CD2 candidate Paul Krekorian, who challenged the lawsuit said:
"By filing this lawsuit, the Downtown power brokers proved that they aren't satisfied just trying to steal this election for Essel, they want to hide their tracks too. I was very proud to defend the ethics laws that the voters of Los Angeles enacted and have relied upon for nearly a quarter century. Today we won a tremendous victory for transparency when the Federal Court agreed with my arguments and completely rejected the frivolous lawsuit brought by Chris Essel's special interest supporters to overturn the City's ethics laws."

You can read the entire court ruling HERE.

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Morning Briefs and Outtakes on SEIU "Friend" Supervisor Ridley-Thomas, LAPD shakeup, Councilwoman Perry "Shakedown" (LOL!) of AEG and other News

Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas with Labor Secretary Hilda Solis and County Labor Federation Head Maria Elena Durazo

County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas ex. "SEIU Brother" Tyrone Freeman
What does County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas have to hide, especially from Federal Investigators and the Los Angeles Times?
But first, a flashback moment.
Controversy surrounding a powerful Los Angeles labor leader threatened Thursday to alter the landscape beneath the county's hottest political race, which has been fueled by record amounts of union spending.
Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors candidate Bernard C. Parks, who trailed in the June primary, challenged opponent Mark Ridley-Thomas to return more than $4.5 million raised on his behalf by a labor alliance that included beleaguered union leader Tyrone Freeman.
Parks, a Los Angeles city councilman, also noted that county officials have accused Freeman's local of raising more than $5 million in illegitimate union dues from low-wage home healthcare workers, a charge that union attorneys have flatly denied.
That was then, this is today from LA Times Investigative Reporter Paul Pringle.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas has declined to release any records of communications between his office and a longtime associate who has been employed by corporations that do millions of dollars of business with the county and a rail project that Ridley-Thomas helps oversee.
Ridley-Thomas similarly rejected Times requests for any e-mails, memos and letters involving the companies that hired the associate, Cynthia McClain-Hill, earlier this year.
The Times has reported that federal authorities have questioned people about Ridley-Thomas' ties to McClain-Hill and her employment with a joint venture managed by Flatiron Construction, which is building the $862-million, taxpayer-funded Expo Line light rail train. McClain-Hill, a lawyer who owns a lobbyist firm and has contributed thousands of dollars to Ridley-Thomas' campaigns, also works for Unisys Corp., which provides computer services to the county. Under the California Public Records Act, The Times sought more than nine months of records, including copies of the supervisor's appointment calendar and telephone bills.
The Feds are looking at Supervisor Ridley-Thomas? Wonder why?
The federal queries grew out of a U.S. Labor Department and FBI investigation into alleged corruption within the Service Employees International Union, a key financial backer of Ridley-Thomas' election campaign last year, people familiar with the probe say.
Could it be that someone with former SEIU ties is "singing" to the Feds? Plus, it is no secret that Supervisor Ridley-Thomas has close ties to SEIU and their "associates" as noted by veteran practitioner of "outcome-based, agenda journalism", former LA Times scribe and current LA Observed contributer Bill Boyarsky.
The Project Acorn event was at the headquarters of Local 721 of the Service Employees Union. It hadn�t started so I walked around the Virgil Avenue neighborhood, a few miles west of downtown. It�s a neighborhood of apartments, probably affordable for working families (if they double up) but they will be out of range if building ever resumes. At the union hall, I ran into Sen. Mark Ridley-Thomas, and interviewed him on the closed Martin Luther King Jr. hospital for a story I plan to do for LA Observed on his race with Los Angeles City Councilman Bernard Parks. Then I introduced both Mama Hill and a short video about her and about how she faced foreclosure.
Too bad that Boyarsky was fixated on the outcome of his agenda missive, thus missing the chance to get to the bottom of now Supervisor Ridley-Thomas dubious ties to SEIU, but then this is from the noted denier of "Raineygate".
** Less than one week from being sworn in as former Chief Bill Bratton's "designated heir" in the role of City of Los Angeles "Top Cop", Chief Charlie Beck announces a shake up of his command staff.
Beck, who was confirmed as chief by the City Council last Tuesday, promoted Deputy Chief Michel Moore to become one of the LAPD's three assistant chiefs and assigned him to a newly created post in charge of Special Services, according to an announcement released Monday.
In his new post, Moore will oversee an array of specialized operations that, until now, have been run separately, including the agency's Counter-Terrorism and Criminal Intelligence Bureau, the elite Metropolitan Division and the Detective Bureau.
To make room for Moore, Assistant Chief Jim McDonnell, who for several years has been the second-highest-ranking person in the department, dropped one rank to deputy chief and will take on a new position as chief of detectives.
Link to the takes on Chief Beck's shakeup from Ron Kaye and the Daily News.
** With apologies to the Bob "Big Hug" Hertzberg, Governor Arnold "Kennedy Republican" Schwartzenegger has chosen fellow moderate/RINO republican State Senator Abel Maldonado, to replace now Congressman John Garamendi as Lt. Governor, Maldonado must be confirm by both the Assembly and State Senate.
** Hold your laughs please, Councilwoman Jan Perry said Monday she is talking to officials at Anschutz Entertainment Group about reimbursing at least some of the $3.2 million in taxpayer money spent on the "non- permitted" AEG/ Michael Jackson memorial. Now LOL!!
** Talk about stimulating your political appetite. The City Council will resume talks Tuesday on a proposed medical marijuana ordinance that would let dispensaries sell pot to qualified patients -- even though the city attorney and district attorney insist such transactions would be illegal.
The City Council will consider amending the fifth draft (in how many flippin years!?) of the proposed ordinance submitted by the city attorney. Among the three dozen amendments proposed to the measure are:
-- only 70 collectives would be allowed citywide, or one medical marijuana facility per 57,000 residents, each chosen via a blind random drawing; link here for the rest.
Your thoughts.....................

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Monday, November 23, 2009

LA Times Discovers CD 2's "Lettergate"

" Is this letter stolen property?"
Leave it to CD 2 Candidate Chris Essel's Campaign Consultant John Shallman to get his "newpaper of choice" help in promoting "Lettergate".
With just two weeks before the Dec. 8 runoff election, accusations are flying between the two candidates vying to replace former Los Angeles City Councilwoman Wendy Greuel in the 2nd District, which stretches from Sherman Oaks and Studio City to Sunland-Tujunga.
Last week, Assemblyman Paul Krekorian sent a mailer depicting his opponent, former Paramount Pictures executive Christine Essel, as the “consummate downtown political insider” and trying to link her to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who had a weak showing in the San Fernando Valley in his March re-election campaign.
Krekorian’s brochure included a 2000 letter sent on official stationary by then-Assembly Speaker Villaraigosa expressing gratitude to Essel for hosting a meet-and-greet at her home. The mailer claimed the letter thanked Essel “for launching his mayoral campaign with a fundraiser.”
But Essel’s campaign said the event had nothing to do with Villaraigosa’s mayoral campaign and no money was raised for him at the event. A Villaraigosa spokeswoman confirmed those statements.
So far so good, for the Times in its role as the Essel's Campaign PR organ. But it gets better.
On Monday, Essel’s campaign sent a news release to reporters with a provocative subject line in all caps: “Burglary charge in city council special election.” Aides included a police report filed by Essel on Friday at the North Hollywood station and a letter she sent to L.A. County Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley asking him to investigate where Krekorian’s campaign got the letter, which she said was a personal note that was “mine only to possess and or release.” [That assertion is debatable since the document was sent by a public official on State Assembly letterhead]. Opps something about public documents being well......., public documents.
Krekorian's Campaign Consultant Eric Hacopian responds.
Krekorian’s campaign said a person -- whom the campaign would not identify -- brought the letter to the campaign office. His campaign consultant Eric Hacopian called the burglary allegation “another silly attempt” by Essel’s campaign to change the subject.
“Her hypocritical claims are laughable,” Hacopian said in a statement. “What's more, in directing the North Hollywood police to look into this frivolous matter to pursue her own political interests, she is wasting valuable police resources at a time when we can ill-afford to misuse public funds.”
But Shallman said “Until they show they had a public records request to get it [the letter] they are in possession of stolen property.”
All of this over a public document?
** KABC Channel 7 report on "Lettergate".
Your thoughts........................

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Morning Briefs and Outtakes on the High-Maintenance Candidate for City Council and other News

"The Million Dollar (in Special Interest money) Candidate for City Council"

"Are Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's ACORN friends, street walking for Chris Essel?"

Who said that CD 2 City Council Candidate Chris Essel was out-sourcing "entertainment jobs"?
Consider this comment posted on the Andrew Breitbart post yesterday.
Anonymous said...
ACORN is working for Chris Essel in CD2. They are apparently being paid by the Painters Union according to one of their walkers.
November 22, 2009 8:32 PM
Now, while this comment is only speculation, it would not surprise me if this were to be verified, considering this from the Ethics Commission.
International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Washington, DC 20006 (Independent Expenditure) Support Christine Essel City Council Member - District 02 Chris Essel for City Council 2009 - General (1321633)[Election: 12/08/09] 11/19/09 11/18/09
GOTV Activities to include phone banks and ** door-to-door mobilization
TELSC-1 $58,078.00
Door to door mobilization? Hmmm, it seems that the fine citizens in CD 2 are going to be treated to the possible spectacle of IBEW stooges and ACORN junkies, walking the streets together in search of "ballots" (** these two groups working together in search of absentee ballots is scary) for Chris Essel. This should provide entertaining blog posts in abundance, leading up to, and possibly after election day.
As for Chris Essel, her campaign when you add up Contributions ($475,150.13), Public Matching Funds ($166,760.00) and Independent Expenditures ($556,106.58), the tote tallies a whopping $1,031,256.71 in Special Interest cash, not counting matching funds. That fact alone should remind CD 2 voters of the potential future costs in maintenance and diligent attention to the whims and policy needs of her contributors, if Chris Essel is elected to the City Council.
The thought of Special Interest groups like IBEW, AEG, Ari Swiller and possibly ACORN, working together to buy Chris Essel a seat within the Horseshoe at City Hall, has prompted this blogger to announce his endorsement of Paul Krekorian for City Council.
I have been straight forward in my misgivings about Krekorian's policy decisions as an Assemblyman. My first choice for CD 2 was Mary Benson, who's grasps of policy issues, was unmatched by any of the home-grown candidates in the primary. That said, Krekorian's outreach and the fact that he has the vast majority of grass-roots activists in CD 2, supporting his campaign, says enough about who would best represent the unique concerns of this council district. Plus, Krekorian is in a sense, on probation until 2011, in "backing his talk, with the walk" at City Hall.
** BTW, one can Google "International Union of Painters and Allied Trades and ACORN" and find numerous examples of collaborations between the two organizations.
** Link here to read Ron Kaye's take on "Lettergate".
Afternoon thought on CD 2 Runoff:
Chelsea Cody at ourla.com reports that today is the last day to register to vote in the CD 2 Runoff. One might want to note the additional number of register voters that a well-finance "door to door mobilization" might produce for the candidate of choice, especially if ACORN was involved. In addition, link here to read Sunland-Tujunga Nina Royal's reasoning for supporting Paul Krekorian.
This should be a busy news day at 200 Spring Street, as the City Council attempts to break their tired act of vacillating on policy issues.
** The City Council's Public Safety Committee take up the issue of the cost of the non-permitted AEG/ Michael Jackson Memorial. One can bet that AEG's "Boss Lieweke" will have "eyes and ears" nearby.
** The City Council reconvenes its multi-year dialog on Pot, courtesy of the inaction of one, Councilman Ed "density" Reyes. CD 14 Councilman Jose Huizar has been the rational thinker in proposing solutions to this mess. One consideration in today's discussion, is the support of Attorney General Jerry Brown......., for the legal stance taken by District Attorney Steve Cooley and City Attorney Carmen Trutanich.
** LA Times David Zahniser drops another bomb on "Pensiongate 09".
The former top executive of one of Los Angeles' public employee pension systems rented an apartment from a company that at the same time was securing millions of dollars in public funds from his agency.
Robert Aguallo, who served as general manager of the City Employees' Retirement System until last year, was a tenant in a CIM Group apartment building in 2007, when his agency's board voted to invest $15 million in CIM's Fund III.
Your thoughts........................

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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunland-Tujunga Fights Back Against Essel, the Downtown Insider

I am getting around 7 high gloss mailers a day from Chris Essel. I'm not sure which forest she and the IBEW purchased, but that's a lot of trees in my mailbox. I'm not the only one that is annoyed by the Essel mailer flood. My friends and colleagues in beautiful & independent Sunland-Tujunga have decided to fight back against the quantity, and even more importantly, the content of those mailers.

Go check out our new blog over at
We'll be debunking the lies, bringing you the breaking news, and we'll only be around till Chris and her deep pocket donors are defeated! Bookmark us, and check back often.

Conservative Media Mogul Andrew Breitbart to Guest Host on KFI 640 AM from 7-10 PM Sunday Night

Biggovernment.com creator Andrew Breitbart

LA Times Media Columnist Jim Rainey of "Raineygate" fame.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his ACORN "Rent a Mob" supporters.

ACORN's role in helping elect "Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa".

Conservative media mogul Andrew Breitbart, creator of "breitbart.com", "bighollywood.com" and "biggovernment.com", will guest host on KFI 640 AM, tonight from 7-10 PM. This time slot is usually the domain of erudite, conservative host John Batchelor.
Breitbart's "biggovernment.com" expose on the dubious doings of ACORN, as documented by aspiring video-journalists Hannah Giles and James O'Keefe, hit locally last week with videos of ACORN LA's operations.
ACORN LA release this statement, regarding the LA videos, through their favorite PR organ known locally to most as the Los Angeles Times, aka, "Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street".
But from the "Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street", there is still no statement about the "journalistic malpractice" that was Media Columnist Jim Rainey's "outcome-based, agenda journalism" hit piece on Breitbart's ACORN expose, thus "Raineygate" continues.
Not only are there more tapes, it’s not just ACORN. And this message is to Attorney General Holder: I want you to know that we have more tapes, it’s not just ACORN, and we’re going to hold out until the next election cycle, or else if you want to do a clean investigation, we will give you the rest of what we have, we will comply with you, we will give you the documentation we have from countless ACORN whistleblowers who want to come forward but are fearful of this organization and the retribution that they fear that this is a dangerous organization. So if you get into an investigation, we will give you the tapes; if you don’t give us the tapes, we will revisit these tapes come election time.
This blogger has no doubt that Breitbart will cover the above topics during his three-hour stint on KFI, this evening. But hopefully Breitbart will dedicate some time to discussing ACORN's local connections to LA's various politicos.
For example, one can find so much to dwell on in this one paragraph, from former LA Times City Hall Beat Writer and Ethics Commissioner Bill Boyarsky, as posted at LA Observed.
The Project Acorn event was at the headquarters of Local 721 of the Service Employees Union. It hadn�t started so I walked around the Virgil Avenue neighborhood, a few miles west of downtown. It�s a neighborhood of apartments, probably affordable for working families (if they double up) but they will be out of range if building ever resumes. At the union hall, I ran into Sen. Mark Ridley-Thomas, and interviewed him on the closed Martin Luther King Jr. hospital for a story I plan to do for LA Observed on his race with Los Angeles City Councilman Bernard Parks. Then I introduced both Mama Hill and a short video about her and about how she faced foreclosure.
We can explore ACORN's relationship with SEIU to begin. How about now County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas links to SEIU figures such as the disgrace former head of SEIU 6434 General Manager Tyrone Freeman? What about the connections of former SEIU 660 officials Arnelle Grajeda and Alejandro Stephens to the late Miguel Contreras's dubious V.I.P. non-profit? Then we can discuss Boyarsky's support for ACORN and how it would affect his '"objective comments" regarding the ethical lapses of Columnist Jim Rainey.
Further, maybe Breitbart could take some calls from local activists who are well-versed in Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's links to ACORN and their role in getting him elected to CD 14 in 2003 and in 2005, to Mayor. Patterico's Patrick Frey would be an logical person to have on-air to discuss the numerous past episodes of "outcome-based, agenda journalism" at the "Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street" and how they penned "hit pieces" as noted by the Boulevard Sentinel in 2003, during their former incarnation as the "LA Antonia Times". Their goal was to merge newsroom and editorial resources, into the objective of furthering the "political agenda" of Antonio Villaraigosa.
In closing, hope you tune in tonight, then look forward to the spin tomorrow from the likes of LA Observed and the LA Times, the old guard of the liberal "outcome-based, agenda journalism".
Your thoughts........

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Trutanich crackdown has Craig X. Rubin facing a 5 to 12 year sentence

A city-wide crackdown on marijuana dispensaries launched by City Attorney Nuch Trutanich has ensnared an unusual political figure in its net. Craig X. Rubin, a well known marijuana advocate who ran for Mayor of Los Angeles in March of 2009, was arrested recently for his cannabis activism.

Rubin, who has appeared on the television series "Weeds", has led an activist lifestyle for cannabis for many years while working full-time as a pastor at The Family Church in Pasadena. Rubin has also been an outspoken critic of the LAPD Narcotics Division, whom he accuses of stealing millions of dollars from the people they arrest, pointing out the fact that cannabis is usually a cash business and the temptation for officers is very high.

Rubin claims that his arrest was politically motivated. "This prosecution is completely political retribution because of my outspoken stance in favor of cannabis against city officials who waste taxpayer money," Rubin said. Rubin adds to his claims of persecution the fact that City Attorney Carmen "Nuch" Trutanich has proposed a law that would affect only Rubin. It is already illegal to own and operate a cannabis club while on probation without the approval of the judge and the probation department. Nuchs proposed law would make that illegal, and Rubin claims that the only person out of the over 1,000 pot clubs in Los Angeles it would affect is himself.

The arrest and prosecution have brought troubling times to Craig X. Rubin and his family. Rubin's wife and children are staying in a hotel while Rubin is sleeping on the floor of The Family Church, trying to sell the lease to raise money for his family should he be incarcerated. Rubin raises some troubling issues when he says "Personally, I think Cooley and Trutanich should spend a week in County Jail. They stole the money my wife worked for over the last six months and the funds were in no way co-mingled with the church's money. These guys are thieves stealing peoples life savings without a hearing and prior to conviction."

Rubin and his wife Tara say that the local police took over $8,000 away from them when he was arrested.
Tara Rubin said their family had planned to lease a house with that money.
These are strong allegations by Rubin and I intend to contact the City Attorneys Office for comment or response.

Craigs trial is scheduled to begin on Monday, November 23rd at the LAX Airport Branch of the Superior Court.
11701 S. La Cienega. Division 146 at 8:30 am. Rubin asks that his fellow cannabis activists support him during his trial and help raise money for his defense.

On a side note, today, Nov. 22nd, is Craigs birthday.
You can contact him at craigxrubin@hotmail.com.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Evening Wrap Up and Thoughts on Journalistic Malpractice and other News

Los Angeles Times Media Columnist James Rainey

"Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street"

"ACORN with local political supporters"
This happens when you replace "fact-driven reporting" with "outcome-based, agenda journalism", but then agenda journalism is "par for the course" at the "Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street" these days.
It started with this "agenda missive" on Andrew Breitbart's biggovernment.com video expose of ACORN, via the keyboard of Los Angeles Times Media Columnist James Rainey, as noted by veteran LA Times observer "Patterico" at Patterico's Pontifications.
The following passage below was cause to take notice, in the eyes of Patterico, whether Rainey was stating fact or "had likely been suckered and would end up with egg on his face".
[V]isits to other ACORN offices have gone almost entirely unmentioned. Lavelle Stewart, a fair-housing coordinator in the group’s Los Angeles office, told me this week that she tried to get the “prostitute,” who claimed she had been beaten by her pimp, to go to a women’s center.
“The fact she was not taking the help I offered her made me think something was not right,” Stewart said. “It raised a red flag.”
Then yesterday, Andrew Breitbart's biggoverment.com "dropped this load of crow into Rainey's lap for his consumption", in form of the latest ACORN video, featuring none other than..........., Levelle Steward. Thus, Patterico's keen instints on all things LA Times, expose the "Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street's" insular agenda for all to deconstruct.
But while Rainey mulls whether to add some BBQ to his crow, where is the outrage on this breach of journalistic ethics? Where are the former Times scribes "Westside White Guy", LA Observed blogger Kevin Roderick and "Westside White Guy 2", LA Observed contributor Bill Boyarski, in calling for an in-house investigation?
One should note that Rainey, was the lead newsroom agitator in outing former Opinion Editor Andres Martinez's relationship with ex. girlfriend Kelly Mullens. This initiating what became known as "Grazergate". as reported on "Deadline Hollywood".
I understand it was the Times' own media reporter, Jim Rainey, who just recently got wind of the editor-flack romance and first raised the red flag about it internally this week. My sources say Rainey began asking people who worked for Martinez about his personal life before approaching the editor directly. Martinez became livid and hurriedly called a staff meeting. But because of the LA Times' troubled relationship with its parent Tribune Co., Rainey is accustomed to threading the ethical needle on difficult stories involving his newspaper. (Though I've taken issue here and here with his coverage, or lack of it, of some related stories.) It's no secret there has been tension and resentment between the LA Times newsroom and the paper's editorial/opinion pages.
"WWG" and "WWG2" went into "cyber overdrive" in reporting this egregious assault on the "sacred style book of journalistic ethics". Boyarsky had this missive which he called for "an investigation of the tainted Times" and guess which reporter he wanted to lead the in-house "quest for journalistic justice"?
A beefed up team of top reporters should join media reporter Jim Rainey in examining past Current sections and editorials to see whether they have been influenced by publicist Allen Mayer and his associate, Kelly Mullens, who has been dating Martinez.
But in hindsight, maybe Roderick and Boyarski, both ex. LA Times scribes, were part of the "inside, outside cabal" of current and ex. Times reporters, who's efforts to purge Martinez, were driven by an ideological urge to blend news with opinion, as Martinez opined.
I think the desire to blend opinion with news is the far bigger breach, but I’m guessing the Henry Weinsteins and Tim Ruttens of the world will continue to conjure up the magical words “Staples Center” to wail against any innovation at the paper, and confusing the hundreds of thousands of readers of the LAT who don’t read LA Observed – sorry, Kevin -­ into believing that Grazergate somehow implied an improper blending of the newspaper’s business side and editorial judgment, which it patently did not.
So maybe this is why there are no "Raineygate" posts, with in-house gossip, currently at LA Observed? Who would Boyarsky find among the shrinking ranks of "objective reporters" to investigate this latest breach of journalistic ethics? Or maybe in the eyes of ex.Times scribes like Roderick and Boyarsky, their cohort in "outcome based, agenda journalism" was simply following the dictates of what passes for journalism at the "Old Gray Westside Hag on Spring Street".
In closing, Boyarsky, who also served a stint on the City of Los Angeles Ethics Commission, may have a good reason for remaining silent in regards to "Raineygate". Maybe it has to do with his own past comments on ACORN. Then there was this "appearance" at a "Project ACORN" event.
The Project Acorn event was at the headquarters of Local 721 of the Service Employees Union. It hadn�t started so I walked around the Virgil Avenue neighborhood, a few miles west of downtown. It�s a neighborhood of apartments, probably affordable for working families (if they double up) but they will be out of range if building ever resumes. At the union hall, I ran into Sen. Mark Ridley-Thomas, and interviewed him on the closed Martin Luther King Jr. hospital for a story I plan to do for LA Observed on his race with Los Angeles City Councilman Bernard Parks. Then I introduced both Mama Hill and a short video about her and about how she faced foreclosure.
Thus, don't hold your breathe, in waiting for the latest on "Raineygate" from LA Observed but we did find this piece of "outcome-based, agenda blogging" from the "WWG".
* Andrew Breitbart doesn't want to talk about his business deal to carry Reuters news and links. Soundbitten
* The L.A. Times corrects some of an Op-Ed regarding the liberal group ACORN, but not all. Patterico
** Is the private sector version of IBEW's "Boss D'Arcy", getting close to snaping?
The head of L.A. Live challenged City Attorney Carmen Trutanich on Thursday to either file criminal charges over the Michael Jackson memorial service or apologize for hinting the company may have broken the law.
"Prove it or drop it," AEG President Tim Leiweke said during an interview. "We can't resolve this until he declares we have done nothing wrong or apologizes — I'll take either.
** Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa picks a former top official of the Chicago Housing Authority, Douglas Guthrie to become the new general manager of the city’s Housing Department. One want to bet that Guthrie has some past business with ACORN in Chicago?
The newest appointee to a Los Angeles pension board has withdrawn her nomination after a city councilman voiced concern about her refusal to name her legal clients, city officials said today.
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa had named attorney Angela Reddock to the Fire and Police Pensions system, an agency whose board members have come under scrutiny in recent months regarding the potential for conflicts of interest.
Although council members were scheduled to vote to confirm Reddock today, Councilman Bernard C. Parks raised questions after reading correspondence between Reddock and the city Ethics Commission, which is charged with identifying potential conflicts of interest for new city commissioners. Reddock told the commission in an e-mail that she did not plan to name any client that had paid her more than $10,000, citing attorney-client privilege.
** This is for "Parque Esqueleto".
Former CD 14 City Councilman Nick Pacheco, has been named "temporarily City Administrator" in the City of Montebello.
Many in the audience gasped as long-time Montebello City Administrator Richard Torres announced the $15,000-a-month salary of his temporary replacement, Nick Pacheco. The city council action to appoint Pacheco was among several made in a closed session meeting on Monday.
Enjoy "CD 14 East" before the latest shake up in Montebello.
Your thoughts.......

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