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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Chris Essel: The Developer's Friend

Haven't these guys learned that EVERYONE forwards and re-forwards email and the old, dead Republican mayor gets these things from 2,3,4 people?

Chris Essel is the developers' friend! Whether you like it or not!

From: Aaron Green
Sent: Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Subject: Regarding Council District 2

Dear Developer:

I hope all is well.

The upcoming election in Los Angeles' 2nd Council District is a critical election. One candidate, Chris Essel, understands what is important to the business community. I know this as someone who is her friend and as someone who knows the quality of her work.

Her opponent, Paul Krekorian, has made it clear through statements and his campaign mailers that he is an opponent of any new development and an opponent of the business community. He has touted a voting record of fighting development, and has blamed recent LADWP sink holes, like the one pictured in his mailer (attached), on development. If Paul Krekorian is elected, he will use his seat to consistently vote against reasonable growth in Los Angeles, and not just in Council District 2.

I am asking that, as someone with a vested interested in ensuring that a wise and balanced legislator be elected to the 2nd Council District, you support Chris Essel. My firm is hosting an event on November 17 that I would like you to attend in support of Chris. If you have already supported Chris, I asked that you let others in our industry know what is at stake in this election and invite them to this event.

Please contact me if you have any questions about this event or about Chris Essel. Thank you.


Aaron Green
Director of Political and Community Relations
The Afriat Consulting Group, Inc.

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Anonymous Anonymous said:

Chris is done. This seals it.

November 11, 2009 9:34 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

What a whore.

November 11, 2009 9:39 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

what an idiot, he just screwed the candidate he is trying to help.

November 11, 2009 9:57 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

more with the CD 2. who cares? give it a rest. nobodys paying attention to this nonsense.

whoever gets in becomes a sell-out. Essel and Kevorkian will not be any different than the weasals currently sitting around the whore-shoe.

November 11, 2009 10:06 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Chris Essel: Paid for by Developers

November 11, 2009 10:07 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


the grinnnig idiot who will be kicking Mr. Green's ass tommorow morning.

November 11, 2009 10:11 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Chris, go back to Hollywood baby, this sort of BS does not fly in CD2.

November 11, 2009 10:12 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Lets see how long this lasts until it hits mail boxes.

November 11, 2009 10:16 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Its outrageous but true.

Essel is being exposed for what she really is, a developer tool.

November 11, 2009 10:27 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

"Dear Developer" really? you could not come up with some thing better.

Used car salesman are smarter than this idiot, and the idiot he is raising money for.

November 11, 2009 10:34 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Ha! The Essel machine is getting into gear. The money is going to flood in to produce all the mailers needed to sink Krekorian, who cannot raise a dime at the moment. Jack Weiss's endorsement didn't even make the press, and all his money supporters aren't answering his calls. The mayor's on Chis's side too, so all in all she's bought this election. Typical Shallman campaign.

November 11, 2009 10:39 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Did anyone see the car Shallman is driving?

Stupid Chris Essel.

November 11, 2009 10:44 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

You don't need any coffees, socials, debates, whatever. This says everything you need to know

this one letter is all you need to choose the candidate whose position matches your own.

Thanks for posting this and making it so easy.

November 11, 2009 10:46 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


Jack Weiss is supporting Essel.

November 11, 2009 10:51 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Great scoop Higby, this is making its way around NC leaders in CD2 as we speak.

November 11, 2009 10:51 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


I have been flooded by Paul mailers and phone calls.

Nothing from Chris.

Essel "machine" is more like a CD2 version of a Pinto.

November 11, 2009 10:55 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Shallman drives a Prius.

November 11, 2009 11:00 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

10:51, You are correct, I have rec'd
2 emails already about this post. Also, did you know Essel came to S-T today and made a stump speech during the Veterans Day Memorial. How Tacky can you get? It was set up by CD2 staff who are all campaigning for Essel. People are really turned off by this.

November 11, 2009 11:10 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

That letter's going to sink Essel the leaky vessel. She's not just "the developer's friend," there's merit in balance and not vilifying all developers.

BUT this letter being written ONLY to Dear Developers as a breed apart, clearly with interests OPPOSED to the people, plays right into every worst fear about developers.

With Wendy and Dale Thrust being so hated that's another toxic endorsement.

Riordan and Shallman bought the Times for her but Paul's got the Daily News which counts in CD2.

And Krekorian's got the name ID - he was recently all over the news for sponsoring some bill to protect kids from talent rip-offs and is widely known in CD2. She outspent him 2:1 in the primary and is falling further behind.

Between Benson and Joe B for Tamar in S-T, Paul's got that sewed up.

November 11, 2009 11:11 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

10:51, nice try.

Anyway let the candidates stand for themselves, not who supports whom. Endorsements matter very little in this race pro or con.

November 11, 2009 11:14 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

So I take it from all the pissing and moaning about this that Krekorian is anti-developer, anti-business, and anti-reasonable development, as Essel says. And so are his supporters here.

Is is reasonable to believe that the average voter in CD2 is, as well, and this "scandal" will move them to support Krekorian? Or is this just more preaching to the converted -- the hard-core Krekorian supporters who lurk here patting each other on the back that THEIR candidate will oppose all growth in the district.

The answer to that is obvious.

(And, how many more G-D days of this partisan ranting among the handful who care are left?)

November 11, 2009 11:14 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


You were obviously turned off. I'm betting you're a "majority" of one, and that pretty much everyone else there expects that from politicians -- elected, or waiting to be.

November 11, 2009 11:16 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The Afriat Consulting Group: I assume that must be Steve Afriat's firm. Mr. Afriat used to run for any office in sight many years ago. He lost every time. I recall meeting him on a number of occasions. Paul Koretz has a more dynamic personality.

November 11, 2009 11:19 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Joe B has already endorsed Paul on the Foothills Forum. He has a letter signed by local leaders. Mary Benson is in, as is Louis Pugliese and Tamar. Chris is done.

November 11, 2009 11:25 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


Heard about Essel stump speech at the Veteran's day event.

Cheap trick from a no class campaign.

November 11, 2009 11:34 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Afriat clinet list is a laundry list of undesirables, who would want a fundraiser from his firm?

November 11, 2009 11:39 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

And Nuch endorsed this idiot?

November 11, 2009 11:52 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Dale Trash was walking Essel around at the Veterans Day Event.

Are they out of their minds?

November 11, 2009 11:53 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

It was Steve Afrait who managed the campaign AGAINST the 1999 City Charter. He is totally behind the STATUS QUO at Los Angeles City Hall. He makes a lot of money off politicians because that is all Steve Afriat cares about is money. So if the Afriat scum ball is raising money for Chris Essel, you know you should be running in the other direction.

November 12, 2009 12:11 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:



November 12, 2009 12:13 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

anyone wonder why Nuch has endorsed Essel? There has to be something about Paul that we don't know yet. Wait for the Shallman mailers, they're going to stink. What can it be? Ideas?

November 12, 2009 12:31 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


Shallman has his finger up his behind.

November 12, 2009 12:55 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Now I know why I love the Mayor Sam blog. You will never see this kind of information in any of the local fishwraps or media outlets. Great job, Michael Higby!

November 12, 2009 1:55 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Essel will sink with Afriat aboard. He is the sleaziest City Hall pal. Read in today`s Times another CIM dirty deal, and considering CIM`s direct and/or indirect support of Essel, it makes Essel dirty. Hey, what`s new.

November 12, 2009 3:05 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Wasn't Steve Afriat the strange looking guy who saved the lap dance? Phil, help us out on this.

November 12, 2009 3:55 AM  

Blogger Phil Jennerjahn said:

Some of the Krekorian supporters here are almost deranged.

Krekorian helped bankrupt the State of California with his insidious voting record in Sacramento...

...but somehow Chris Essel is the bad guy in this election?


November 12, 2009 7:58 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Aaron Green is the same kid who said minor candidates shouldn't run for office because it's a waste of tax payer dollars. My guess is he's 22 yrs old max, still a lot of growing up to do.

November 12, 2009 8:07 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Hasn't anyone considered that this "Dear Developer" letter may be a dirty campaign trick, orchestrated by the Krekorian campaign?

November 12, 2009 8:08 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Afriat, where did you find this guy Aaron?

I mean, "Dear Developer"!!! How effing stupid can you be to write a letter like that?

Did he not know others would read it?

C'mon Steve, you know, there are NO secrets in politics.

Everything gets out sooner of later.

You need to rethink Aaron's duties.

November 12, 2009 8:29 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Essel supporter @ 8:08 AM, don't even try to spin this one. Like the other poster said Aaron Green is known for putting his foot in his mouth.

Developers are the most hated people in L.A. especially now for help tank the economy. The fact that Aaron Green thinks quoting Krekorian saying all the right things will somehow help his developer-loving candidate Essel proves how clueless & insane his villain boss Steve Afriat is.

Afriat is absolutely despised -I repeat: absolutely despised and for good reason. Christine Essel is Thanksgiving turkey December 8th and I'll be surprised if Aaron doesn't lose his job after this fuck up.

November 12, 2009 8:33 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous @ 8:08AM said:

Anonymous @ 8:33AM wrote: Essel supporter @ 8:08 AM, don't even try to spin this one

I don't like Essel or her developer friends any more than you do.

But having seen what passes for politics in Los Angeles, a healthy level of cynicism makes me wonder.

It could have been the Krekorian people trying to smear Essel.

And I wouldn't put it past the Essel people to put this out so they could accuse the Krekorianites of a "dirty trick".

Two things I've learned reading this blog for the past year or so:

1) In LA politics, what you see is never what it seems to be.

2) Never put anything past the John Shallmans, Ace Smiths, Parke Skeltons, Mike Trujillos and all the others in their line of so-called work.

November 12, 2009 8:56 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

8:56 fair enough but Aaron Green is known for shooting his mouth off so it makes sense he would do something this dumb and damaging to Essel.

November 12, 2009 9:10 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

This will show up a mailer, mark my word.

November 12, 2009 9:45 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Lets see, the only people voting on December 8th are Angry Homeowners and Armenians.

So what do you do, piss off the homeowners of course.

Essel the sinking vessel.

November 12, 2009 9:47 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Why does she need this fundraiser any way? does she not have enough money already.

This is a Special Election in which 3 people are going to vote.

Why does she need to raise money from the sleaze ball Afriat's of the world?

November 12, 2009 9:49 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


I don't Mr. Green is going to like Mr. Hacopian after all of this is done.

November 12, 2009 9:50 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Lets see who should win on 12/9

Essel backed by:

Holocaust Deniers
Antonio supporters

Krekorian funded and backed by:

Pretty much all community leaders in CD2
Democratic Party
The candidates who finished 3rd and fourth

Essel is back in the Hollywood Hills on 12/10

November 12, 2009 9:54 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

8:29, Steve brought Aaron over from VICA where he embarrassed Stuart Waldman on his way out by saying grassroots candidates waste money by running for office. Waldman had to go into damage control mode and explain that Aaron no longer worked for VICA. Looks like Big Mouth better dust off his resume again.

November 12, 2009 9:58 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

This is why we love Higby. He drops in from time to time with a suitcase nuke.

November 12, 2009 10:02 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


To pay for Shallman's and Burnside's winter vacation in Switzerland.

They are taking Essel to the cleaners, and could care less that she is going down in flames.

November 12, 2009 10:04 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Fundraising letters do not go out without the approval of the campaign.

Either Essel approved this which would make her an idiot, or her operation is disorganized that she does not know what her fundarising team is doing.

November 12, 2009 10:06 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Essel people are too obsessed with money. They will lose this election because every Hacopian dollar is worth three Shallman dollars.

Unlike most other consultants Hacopian is not a thief.

November 12, 2009 10:11 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I got the e-mail and I'm over the hill. What grass roots people need to do is let every NC in CD2 know the shadiness of Essel. Everyone start calling around because chances are a lot of people not in the know will not see this info. Get people out to vote because they expect a low turnout. I say you should have a press conf. with the NC's and organizations on board that are grass root people for the people. You can do it!!!!!

November 12, 2009 10:23 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

West Hollywood cosultant is looking for a job; anyone interested in hiring right now?

Strong experience in the Valley prior to present position.

Great writing skills combined with impeccable political judgment and overall savvy.

November 12, 2009 10:24 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


No worries, got this post e-mailed to me by three NC people in CD2.

November 12, 2009 10:32 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Aaron Green meet Eric Hacopian.

That little shit is going to get it.

November 12, 2009 10:33 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


Big Laugh.

Burnside is well known for billing for ghost canvass crews that don't exist.

She did that in Hannah-Beth Jackson's race many years ago when i was working for her.

November 12, 2009 10:38 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


Is that for Aaron Green or Shallman?

November 12, 2009 10:39 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Shallman hires Burnside because he gets a cut of the action.

He does not care what she does as long as he gets his kickback from her.

Just look at Essel's filings from September, she charged $60,000 for a one week canvass. How believable is that.

November 12, 2009 10:47 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

If Krikorian is so proud of his no development record then why were his staff members at the City Planning Commission providing moral support to the Christopher Alan, a major developer in CD 2, a couple of months ago. I saw them there talking to Christoper Alan about his Victory Development.

So the hypocrisy is very evident he (Krikorian) does support development. You have to. You can tell the NC that you don't, but anyone with a half a brain knows that if there is no more development we will turn into Detroit.

Developers are seen as the evil people in our society, but after these places are built everyone goes shopping there, even the people who did not support it.

November 12, 2009 11:28 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

9:58, Aaron may have been right on that one. Everyone on this blog is griping that we've got the two most funded ones - because too many small candidates canceled each other out. Otherwise I agree that if he tried to help Essel with this email, he did the opposite. Funny how he calls Paul too anti-development when Shallman had Essel blast him to the Times for being linked to Fuentes and allegedly wanting to develop Verdugo Hills. They need to make up their minds.

Not that Paul hasn't made arguments too for soundbites - the whole Turkish-Armenian genocide issue was milked too shamelessly. But what people really care about is who's going to do what about issues that improve quality of life.

November 12, 2009 11:33 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

11:28, there is definitely hypocrisy involved with vilifying developers and anyone who supports even the best managed projects. In this economy, pulling together something that's top-drawer is an accomplishment not a villainous act.

And yes even people who say they hate something shop there and end up loving it. That happened with the Grove, which the neighbors and merchants of Farmers Market fought like mad, then when it was built, the long-time merchants I frequent were thrilled because their business tripled and quadrupled. People who went shopping would stop to eat and buy a gourmet bread or fruit or fancy nuts, food traffic was way up and spend more than the people who'd go before.

When Koretz ran he said the Grove should never have been built and should be demolished, to please the cranky homeowner groups. Yes there are impacts that need to be mitigated and in future, maybe things could be done even better, forecasting car trips to err on the high not low end for example. But it's nuts to say that today, the Grove should be demolished.

(Meanwhile while he was in West Hollywood he supported developing that tiny city into the densest in the west - look what they've done to Sunset Blvd., all gridlock, and they're about to make it way worse with the Towers Records site and some huge projects just approved.)

Koretz saying something like that just shows what an extreme and often negative influence homeowner groups have. However Koretz has proved more of a pragmatist which would be expected of an experienced pol. I'm sure Paul would too. I'm wary of candidates who run on promises and not their track records, we've seen how that can lead to a fraud perpetrated on the voters. The notion that experience is always a negative in a candidate is as foolish as saying that all development is bad.

November 12, 2009 11:48 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Paul's got the Daily News which counts in CD2.

Didn't Daily News endorse Tamar and Sanchez? Neither one performed well in their category. No real measurable impact.

Aaron Gross is a silly, little kid. Kind of like a teenage virgin messing around with Times Square hookers. Man, is he gonna be taken for a ride.

November 12, 2009 11:55 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

"One candidate, Chris Essel, understands what is important to the business community. I know this as someone who is her friend and as someone who knows the quality of her work."

You know the saying. With friends like these. . .

November 12, 2009 11:56 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Paul Krekorian doesn't need to raise money. He has Aaron and Afriat on his team!

November 12, 2009 11:59 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

in one side you got
the other side
my god why

November 12, 2009 11:59 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

This is the same two or three people just piling on the comments.

Utterly ridiculous.

November 12, 2009 12:01 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Nov. 12 11:28 says: "If Krikorian is so proud of his no development record then why were his staff members at the City Planning Commission providing moral support to the Christopher Alan, a major developer in CD 2, a couple of months ago. I saw them there talking to Christoper Alan about his Victory Development.
So the hypocrisy is very evident he (Krikorian) does support development."

Now 11:28, try not to be so ill informed. It makes you look stupid. You know nothing about why Krekorian supported this development. He's never said no development. The difference is that the community supported this development as it will revitalize a blighted area and create much needed business, restaurants, housing, etc. Alan held dozens and dozens of meetings over several years to get community input and support. He's not like the greedy developers. He cares about the community as he lives there. Krekorian did not make his decision to support this development in a vacuum. He spoke with many in the community to insure that it was a win-win.

November 12, 2009 6:18 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

November 12, 2009 11:28 AM...

Paul KREkorian never told any of us that he would not support any development. Buy what he did say is... he will work with Neighborhood Councils and developers together, in order to insure that proposed developments fit well within their communities and are compatible with their neighborhoods.

I know you don't want hear that but it's true, so live with it.

November 12, 2009 10:52 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

This is 11:28. I never said that development is bad. I support development it is vital to keep our city moving into the future. I know that Krikorian supports development, but his people or supporters want to make it sound like he doesn't and that anybody who does is evil. This is stupid comment and really unworthy of a serious election.

November 13, 2009 12:11 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Well at least Afriat knows the importance of all of the councilmembers. Unlike the dorks who read this who keep complaining about the Mayor Sam coverage in CD 2.

If you find the election of any of the 15 councilmembers unimportant, then you aren't really anything but a whining SLAPPER. Certainly you are not going to get anything done, EVER, if you don't think that all 15 seats are important.

So delete the posts about CD 2 if you don't want to read them, but stop complaining about them.

November 14, 2009 11:21 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

How naive are you people? This letter has no validity and could be written by anyone who has a grudge. This is what I like to call dirty campaigning. There are no references to check the authority of this letter. Also, if you haven't noticed the letter is skewed an makes a point to highlight Kerkorian's strengths and down Essel. Some of these points have nothing to do with development! Obviously a stage.
Everybody complains about electing bad politicians.. Well the stupid people who believe this "letter" are the ones who are guilty. You cannot believe everything you see on the internet, especially in a blog.

December 03, 2009 11:36 AM  

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