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Glendale, Caruso-fied



JM, Underwear store, 4.29.08



click images to enlarge




JM, Lago Caruso, 4.29.08



JM, self-portrait with workmen, 4.29.08



Americana at Brand opens this weekend.

Salsipuedes Beach

JM, Hermosa, 9.5.07

Postcards from the edge of...Los Feliz


JM, Vermont Car Wash, 4.27.o8

Joseph Mailander elsewhereemail

The Car Wash Workers Organizing Committee, a United Steelworkers adjunct with some SEIU support, pickets Vermont Hand Wash at Hollywood and Prospect Sunday morning. The bulk of the picketers don't work for the car wash. "No justice, no peace" is the bullhorn chant. The dispute is over Vermont Hand Wash not having a contract with an organization that doesn't have many contracts. It's also over the firing of Jose Torres, an outspoken worker at the company.

If you're Anglo and over forty, you're thinking---"you mean there's such a thing as a union car wash?" Don't doubt; check cleancarwashla.com. The organization released a paper in late March of this year entitled "Cleaning up the Car Wash Industry" [warning: pdf].


The rock goes in first...

Across the street, work is finally underway in the rehabbing of the absurd and neglected flatiron island formed by the triangle of Hollywood, Vermont, and the end of Prospect. The island has been used as a convenient cab layover station for years and years; one is even seen in the photo. But the community for some reason doesn't like the cabs, and the layover zone is likely to go.

Some enterprising scribe should try to learn exactly how much Barrio Planners made off the development phase of the tiny island. Probably enough to buy a little island off the coast of Maine.

Yours truly has enjoyed many a late-night cab ride home from said zone after tee many martoonis downtown and a subsequent uneasy Metro ride home. If it indeed goes, it will be missed.

Solidarity in Sunland Tujunga


Shining on in the shade: No2HomeDepot's Abby Diamond with KNBC

Joseph Mailander elsewhereemail

It was supposed to be dialog; but it soon ironically became a City-funded networking party for about 300 Sunland Tujunga stakeholders who oppose Home Depot's effort to site a store on Foothill Boulevard.

The City Attorney's office, through its primary mediation specialist, Avis Ridley-Thomas, sent twenty-plus moderators and one mediation anchor, Barbara Goldfarb, to facilitate community pro-and-con dialog sessions.


Group 2: the nicest printing yet the most crossouts

It proved difficult to find more than a single proponent for the global retail giant at any single table, and most tables had none. The results were scribbled onto large pads and shared with the larger group after the dialog sessions. Because of the paucity of sentiment in favor of Home Depot, few benefits were offered on any table's list; some were even offered tongue-in-cheek to demonstrate how little pro sentiment there was.


Happy with the Do-It Center

Even before the day began, the City considered farming out the mediation process to one of two mediation entities, one backed by Loyola Law School and the other, The Center for Public Dispute Mediation. On the latter's advisory board is former Councilman Hal Bernson, who was also chair of the City's Planning and Land Use Management Committee.


I hear y'all...Zuma Dogg listens to local land-use experts


Many tables called for revisiting the EIR, a phase that the original permitting process slighted, very unusual for a project of this scope.

For all the community stakeholder's solidarity, Home Depot appears even less flexible. The company sent three representatives. It has since early last year maintained a premature Home Depot sign up on Foothill---an odd flaunting of signage under any circumstances, but especially when considering that this particular property's address is situated on a side street so as not to trigger various environmental impact inquiries.

Sunland Tujunga's "invasive retail" problem and its southern neighbor

Joseph Mailander elsewhereemail

It is fair to say that the first truly direct testing of the community of Sunland Tujunga by Home Depot tomorrow is being watched anxiously in many sections of the City---and even outside of Los Angeles as well. Nervous new retail operators from Sunland Tujunga's neighbor to the south, the City of Glendale, already concerned about the downturn in the economy, are wondering if the "invasive retail" sentiment will spread to their largely white, largely suburban edge city with the same kind of fervor that the movement has cultivated in LA's most northeastern---and most isolated---community.

Glendale and Sunland Tujunga have a reciprocal relationship across the Verdugos that straddle the communities (the Verdugo mountains, however, belong mostly to Glendale). Sunland Tujunga shops Glendale nearly as much as it shops its own community, and Glendale reaps the benefit of the revenue, while Sunland Tujunga gladly pays the price for its isolation from "invasive retail"---a concept completely opposite to Glendale's approach of using retail to entice customers from nearby middle-class Los Angeles communities like Sunland Tujunga, Eagle Rock, Highland Park, Glassell Park, Atwater, Silver Lake, and Los Feliz, as well as the cities of Burbank and Pasadena.

While Sunland Tujunga is mostly a pure middle class community with a pronounced predisposition to the bucolic, especially on its northernmost fringes, Glendale has a large section of upper-tier neighborhoods and even not one but three very wealthy pockets, all significantly detached from the retail zone below the 134 and east of Glendale Boulevard. Glendale is already oversaturated with retail development, all along Glendale Boulevard, Central, and Brand, and is getting even more. As a consequence, its tax base is enormous for its size, enabling it to service not only a large Armenian immigrant community but also to offer many top quality community services to the elderly and physically challenged and to staff seven libraries and many parks, three of the libraries are excellent and one of the rec centers, Pacific Park, is an architectural marvel. It is blessed by being able to consign its industrial services to its southwest, as adjacent San Fernando Road, following old railroad tracks along the LA River, belongs not to Glendale but to Los Angeles, and is zoned for commercial and industrial use. There's a Home Depot on San Fernando, barely tucked into City of LA limits, and Glendale has organized the streets surrounding it to make sure the traffic is all directed to San Fernando.

In Sunland Tujunga, there is none of this careful planning; there is only community in its tightly-packaged frontier sense. Historically it has accomplished community planning by circling the wagons and shooting outwards. And it's easy to see why: cut off from elsewhere as a narrow valley between two oddly imposing mountain chains, the service street is also the main street of the valley: Foothill. This is more important to the debate and the community than outsiders realize. What looks like a banal strip of stucco retail boxes and gas stations also doubles as the community's main artery hosting the Library, Council office, and all the restaurants in the neighborhood; you can't get anywhere without using Foothill, which is not nearly so well equipped for heavy use as San Fernando with its adjacent railroad tracks is.

There really is no earnest debate regarding the Home Depoting of Sunland Tujunga: the community doesn't want this store, and the corporation does; a "win-win" as the survey instrument calls for would simply necessitate the impossible, cutting the baby in half. Via a nearly frivolous lawsuit that should have been tossed out (and would be, were the City of LA to fight it in earnest), the corporation has blackmailed the City into a "mediation" that can only result in further polarization and enmity between the community and the global retailer. But holding their collective breaths are the developers who have their mixed use eyes on Glendale, which has bent over backwards to accommodate Rick Caruso's Americana at Brand, which, like most of Glendale's top retailers including its auto dealers, will depend on consumers from the adjacent middle class LA communities.

Should the community of Sunland Tujunga cause further trouble tomorrow and down the line, the developers and new retailers of Glendale will have to rethink their town as a development safe-haven, insulated from developer-hostile community activism. Perchance they will even be obliged to rethink the traditional Glendale formula of servicing hyper-consumptive retail culture itself.

City at Noon: Smith goes nuts

Ron Kaye's recent rambler about Grieg Smith's proposal to shift sidewalk repair to property owners demonstrates how far your average kleptocratic City Counciman is willing to go to screw every current homeowner in the City of Los Angeles.

Knowing full well that homeowners are a minority in town, rather than the majority they constitute in nineteen of the nation's top twenty cities, Smith is simply trying to take advantage of a minority community, as are most Councilpeople these days.

Basically, they're trying to drive everyone who currently owns single-family property here out of town with fee hikes, in the hope that the lot will sell to someone who wants to develop forty cramped units on it---the kind of person who slips a Councilperson a few grand to get the zone change he or she wants.

I'll tell you what, Smith: if you want me to repair my own sidewalk, the sidewalk that your City built, the sidewalk that your City hasn't maintained for eighty-three years: I'll just put NO TRESSPASSING signs on either end of it too, to make sure nobody hurts themselves on what you're now telling me is my property to fix.

Or better yet: how about me just maintaining my property and you maintaining yours, the City sidewalk.

Don't you even think of shifting one of your failing City's biggest liabilities to me. It's unethical, and of course, it will soon be determined illegal too.

Deed me the sidewalk and I'll maintain it in the way that I want to. But if it's your property---you maintain it.

ELSEWHERE: SEIU boasts about 50/50 program, where homeowners pay half for City repairs.

Morning Eye-Opener


JM, Chris and Russ overexposed, 4.24.08

Joseph Mailander elsewhereemail

Russ Stanton came to the LA Press Club last night and proved himself more interested in management than journalism. Things that fetched eyeballs were good; the Times still had many great writers left; the tactics behind putting out a daily newspaper were subordinated to the strategy of competing in new markets. These considerations seem more the publisher's job than the top editor's. A tech wonk in the audience, not even a scribe himself, asked the best question: "Your talk was about strategy, but you're being asked questions about tactics..." "That's the problem in a nutshell," Stanton said, wondering how to visualize a new strategy in an organization that thinks hyper-tactically. Strategy is more typically the publisher's domain; editors more typically fight for writers, space, stories, the stuff that makes any given day. Also interesting subtext: he kept referring to the space available in the paper as "real estate", the webmaster's term. He wants the Times' site to be stickier; he wants the scribes to be younger and he wants scribes who easily plug into other media. He called print "dead trees." He wants fewer stories to jump. He thought that links from Drudge were good. He admitted he has no dominion over the editorial and op-ed pages.

Brady Westwater thoughtfully informed Russ that his local beat scribes were making tons of errors and even writing fiction in some cases.

Those of us who knew Gehry's work way back when complained of how impermanent it was. And now Santa Monica Place is getting a complete makeover after a scant twenty-seven years. Courtesy Archinect, which is very uneven but which you design people might like to bookmark as Dwell continues its soft descent since Allison's sudden departure.

The mudslinging has begun: Parks calls Ridley-Thomas a "politician", the Daily News says. Somehow, Sheriff Baca has endorsed both candidates.

If you steal a peek at the Daily News left sidebar, you'll note that four of the ten top viewed stories involve the Lakers. Stanton also said last night that the former fishwrap of record was trying to figure out a way to work the Lakers into news stories. So word is out on Laker impact. Now for le deluge blogosphérique.

Keep on Taco Trucking

~
Jonathan Gold
has le bouquet final on taco trucks in today's Weekly: "Keep on Taco Trucking." At the bottom is a list of A Few Good Trucks:

A Few Good Trucks (locations as of this writing):Gorditas Lupita’s, Eagle Rock Blvd. near Avenue 34, Glassell Park; Cemitas Tepeac, Indiana St. at César Chávez, East L.A.; La Oaxaqueña, Lincoln Blvd. at Rose, Venice; 4 Ventos, Whittier Blvd. east of Soto, East L.A.; El Pique, car-wash parking lot on York at Avenue 53, Highland Park; El Chato, Olympic Blvd. near La Brea, L.A.; El Taquito Mexicana, auto-shop parking lot on Lake Ave. near California, Pasadena; El Taurino, 1104 S. Hoover St. at 11th, L.A.; El Matador, Lexington at Western, L.A.; Rambo’s Tacos, Eagle Rock Blvd. south of York, Eagle Rock; King Taco, 4504 E. Third St. at Ford, East L.A.; La Estrella, 502 N. Fair Oaks, Pasadena; Mariela’s, Third St. near Catalina, Koreatown, and Sunset near Coronado, Silver Lake.

Complete with photo essay. Since County Supe Gloria Molina made eating off of a taco truck a virtual act of civil disobedience, the trucks have only become more popular than ever.

The Decorated PFC


JM, Charles Durning, 4.22.08

The event was winding down; people were saying goodnight. Suddenly Charles Durning, newly decorated to the Ordre national de la Légion d'honneur of France, the nation's oldest and most revered order, came forward into a crowd of gents who seemed right out of The Sting. It was a good time to snap a cellphone shot; it was a good event put on by the French consulate, honoring an American who not only has appeared in over 180 films but who long ago landed at Omaha Beach on D-Day and who escaped from German prison camps twice during the war. PFC Durning regaled the Gallic crowd with tales of Germans merciful and Germans not so. The French government in the person of Philippe Larrieu, Consul Général de France à Los Angeles, expressed its debt of gratitude.

Durning is 85 and received SAG's lifetime achievement award two months ago.


City at Noon; Newton and Moore

Street voyeurism: Ron Kaye posts a testy exchange between Mayoral candidate Walter Moore and op-ed editor at the Times Jim Newton (abridged):

WM: ...So when you wonder why the L.A. Times hires reporters and editors who never seem to "get it," just remember: the newspaper is a business. Unfortunately, it's a business that puts its own profits ahead of the lives of the people of L.A. The publishers are not going to entrust their English-language subsidiary to managers who might cut sales at their Spanish-language subsidiary. Instead, the publishers hire reporters and editors willing to adhere to the "party line," namely, "there are no illegal people."

JN:
This is absurd, and I think you know it....

WM:
Your "coverage" of this issue is absurd....You're not running a newspaper; you're running a propaganda machine.

JN:
...I don't even know who runs Hoy or how it's doing -- any more than I do about Newsday or the Baltimore Sun. Criticize all you want. But this argument is just nuts.

WM:
...Why do you think the Tribune hired and keeps you instead of someone able to acknowledge that importing gang members from abroad might not be the greatest idea in the world?...

Follow-up questions might include: who forwarded this to Kaye? It looks like Moore must have. Why would Newton get so testy when we've seen so many lines of inquiry regarding the Times and conflicts of interest in the past? Why would Walter Moore be so testy as to pick up the line of inquiry himself, picking an argument with the proverbial place that buys ink by the barrell?

One thing the Times has continuously forgotten to mention is the fact that without Walter Moore there would be no discussion of Special Order 40 at this time. Also, while most media outlets were referring to Moore's proposal as "Jamiel's Law", the Times has largely sidestepped the term, apparently because it personifies the issue too much.

City at Noon: 40 on 40; Latinos en LAPD

~
The Times scraped around for 40 locals to offer their opinions on Special Order 40; included in the list are Minuteman Jim Gilchrist and libertarian-leaning Anglos Walter Moore, Patrick Frey, Melrose Larry Green, and chismosa Amy Alkon.

The most ludicrous statement in the piece is made by the Times editorial board itself, one of the forty, which said:

The [Jamiel Shaw, Jr.] tragedy exposes deplorable failures in the jailhouse processing of illegal immigrant criminals, but it has nothing to do with the LAPD, much less with Special Order 40.

It's hard to know how they can be so sure of that. Most apologists for SO40 insist that it protects witnesses, and leave things at that. The Times goes much further, denying any possibility of a link between Special Order 40 and the potential to commit a murder; this is in fact a reductio ad adsurdum for the opposing argument. Jamiel's killer may or may not have had a chance to commit a capital crime in the United States at all had his immigrant status been known at the time of his original arrest.

Significantly, Richard Riordan says that the City is right to seek clarification in what may be a wedge-issue for a 2009 Mayoral candidacy.

At La Opinión, there was a story last weekend about recruiting more Latinos for the LAPD in which Bratton calls the Latino community the best source of recruiting and the Mayor says that the war is hindering the recruiting effort. Latino officers already compose a majority in the force.

Birk's Hollenbeck mural hits CityBeat

~{
[UPDATE: CityBeat's archive no longer online. Glad to have preserved what I did.]

As though to compensate for the weird cover on LACMA last week, CityBeat this week catches up wtih Sandow Birk, who's mural for the percent-for-art element of the Hollenbeck Police Station makeover has been criticized in some quarters as condescending:

Only the story isn’t so simple as an elite outsider cocking a snook at a working-class community. “I’m really quite distressed that there’s been such an outcry on what I think is a great project, and that the criticisms are so outlandish and false,” Sandow Birk let me know via e-mail. “The LAPD was involved in the project at every step of the way, and the imagery in the mural was suggested by LAPD officers from Hollenbeck station themselves. This has been a huge project that has been going on for five years, from planning to coming up with a design to the final creation of the mural. At every meeting that I have attended there have been LAPD members and community members involved. They told me stories about the history of the precinct, gave me a tour of the facilities, and showed me their favorite places to eat, as well as memorabilia and stories of remarkable police officers. All of their input was used in the creation of the final design.”


As a long-ago arts admin for the City, I can only add that my experience is that the LAPD was the easiest City agency of all to work with when working on an arts project. (What was the most difficult? The Libraries, of course, because everyone there already knew everything about art, as they kept telling us). And as a guy who's spent an afternoon of classroom time with Birk myself I have to say that the guy is a very dexterious thinker as well as an intriguing artist.

Gregory Rodriguez in Glendale tonight; Ron Kaye's first time

This one is made for you. Times scribe Gregory Rodriguez, author of a book with a really long title, is at Glendale's Central Library auditorium tonight at 7 p.m., talking about his favorite subject, Mexican American and Anglo American race relations, and probably some other things. I met him recently and he knew me from the blogosphere and didn't seem to like me; but I know he's a busy guy, what with Zocalo, the City's best public speaker series, where they give away great catered food and wine after each event as a vurrry compelling lure. Anyway, if you have a chance, go, and find out what things are like when an auditorium turns the mike on him.

Also, a scribe's best friend, Ron Kaye, the recently retired lord of the Daily News, has a new blog, his first. RonKayeLA.com you can bet will be trafficked by lots of scribes trolling for stories they should be out making phone calls about. It should be a treat to watch the unedited thoughts of the editor unfold, and how things echo in local print a couple of days later.

Back to moderation

I'm sorry to say that comments were unrestricted for an hour but I had to bring the moderation mode back almost immediately. Two users posted insults regarding commentators within the hour that comments were unrestricted.

I really don't have much hope that this blog will be unmoderated any time soon. It's disappointing, but I do want to make sure when you read comments here that you are not offended.

I love to read comments as they give me insight into what people are thinking and they even help me with other projects a startling percentage of the time. Yes, comment moderation is a hassle on any street, and I would rather read comments when I have time to, not merely for the sake of approving or disapproving them. But I'm not going to let the blog be hijacked by a couple of people who like to flirt with hate speech and who like to dis other commentators.

It doesn't make me happy to spend time moderating comments, and it sure doesn't help your cause when I have to reject something. I don't like being obliged to moderate comments because of two damn people, but it's part of maintaining a blog and making it worthwhile, and I'll try doing that as best I can.

So forgive the moderation setting. Please leave whatever comments you're inclined to leave; but if you want them published, don't use hate speech, don't mock other commentators, and don't go near racial slurs.

More growing pains to come

Mayor Villaraigosa's developer-beholden Planning Department team, spearheaded by rogue "planner" Gail Goldberg, now wants to build 113,000 more units in LA over the next six years, and thinks that if factoring in all urban infill opportunities, we have space for 350,000.

Goldberg and her team will be busy selling the plan to GROW LA to faux community stakeholder meetings over the next three months.

The problem with having a Planning Chief like Gail Goldberg is that she has never failed to demonstrate that she is completely beholden to the whims of the Mayor's office. Planning cannot come from the Mayor, for the Mayor raises too much money through developers.

If the Mayor wants 113,000, that's what Goldberg will want. LA is not her expertise, it is the former San Diegan's internship. Coming to planning in midlife, she never quite got a feel for what was good for any City, only what was good for Gail Goldberg.

Ms. Goldberg has no Angeleno legacy whatsoever to which to look for counsel on planning decisions. She once needed a map to get from downtown to Los Feliz. Where longtime residents saw natural geographic barriers to regions of the City, such as the Ballona wetlands, the Santa Monica Mountains, the LA River basin, the Arroyo Seco, stretches which made for long sweeps through transitional landscape, Goldberg only looks for developer-friendly urban infill opportunities, and shock community therapies, to congest the City into begging for failing transit, a la Seoul. She doesn't seem to know that "smart growth" is simply growth with toney developer's spin, or that "affordable housing" can also be accomplished through market forces and even cheap-on-the-dollar Fed rental programs like Section 8 housing, rather than civic hyper-kleptomania.

She doesn't know the issues; she doesn't listen to the people; she should go. Whether by accident or design, more than any other single person, she's ruining the City for the future.

City at Noon: Maria Elena onstage at LATC, + Rutten on Team Tony


JM, LATC, 4.16.08

Labor as Theater: The lineup at the Latino Theater Company's Los Angeles Theater Center includes a conversation with labor leader Maria Elena Durazo. Inserting politics into a theater space seems like a deliberte slap in the face to the City's Department of Cultural Affairs. The bitter dispute for control of the space involved many recriminations.

The LATC venue was awarded as a home to the Latino Theater Company through a considerable taxpayer admixture of City and State funds, and string pulling by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Fabian Nunez, over the wishes of the City's Department of Cultural Affairs, which wanted to award the space to a Shakespeare company.

°  °  °  °  °

Up Spring Street a little, Tim Rutten is the latest Times scribe to jump into the Mayor's lap:
Most important, the mayor demonstrated his commitment to the gang issue by increasing funding for anti-gang initiatives from $19 million to $24 million. That may not sound like a lot, but in a year of budgetary crisis and proposed fee hikes on electricity and trash collection, it's the equivalent of giving a quart of political blood.
No it's not. It's the equivalent of 1/12th of a gift from Eli Broad to LACMA for something with his name on it. I'm sure you can find plenty of your own equivalents. Who does he think he's kidding?

La Opinión goes Euro-portal

La Opinión is part of ImpreMedia, and if you didn't click the website today you'll find a big surprise. Big.

The Spanish-language media entity went to a Euro-styled tabloid portal rather than a blase American mariscos-wrap gray page. It. Looks. Great. It. Works. Great. Be proud of a fishwrap's website in town at last! Complete with print ed interactive front-page, er, primera pagina icon.

Check out the smart edition, it's way fun. The fact that some of the handles are still in English as of this posting shows you that yeah, this is still an honest-to-goodness beta, but they launched anyway.

Adweek has an item on the changeover.

O Captain, My Captain...




April 14, 2008:
Antonio gives State of the City address.

April 14, 1912: Titanic hits iceberg.

Click to WEBCAST of speech on 35.

Noteworthy quote from Fantasyland: "Angelenos, lets imagine the horizon beyond our sight. Let's do it as a family. Let's do it as a community. Let's do it as one city."

Impressions from our far-flung correspondents:

"I've never heard more cliches in a speech in my life..."

"Why is...he talking...so...spaced...outttt...like...is....he...drunk?..."

"Where's a single specific on the City outside of gang stuff? Who's getting laid off? Robin Kramer?"

"From $1 billion down to $24 million for gangs, I guess he learned which way the wind is blowing. It's all the Connie Rice plan, but without the money."

Other local reactions:

Rail Riders Union: "That is a great start. Here at the Rail Riders Union, we are looking forward to seeing how he plans on making this a reality–and how we can help implement this vision for the region’s future!"

Boifromtroy: "It looks like he is setting the stage to go to the voters, perhaps later this year, to ask for money to expand rail, but will try to sweeten the pot by also leveraging what can be garnered from private investment. That is a smart move, and I am sure we will hear more about it."

Sylvia Cochran: "Case in point is the trash fee hike. Alleging that the city is currently subsidizing the trash pickup and not passing on the full cost to the consumer, the fee hike is needed to reimburse the city for its expenditure. While this sounds good in theory, the fact that any subsidizing of services is done with city funds which are - you guessed it! - paid for by tax revenues, a recompensing of these expenditures hits the tax payers thrice: one time by paying taxes, the next time by paying trash pick up fees, and a third time by paying an increased fee for said trash pick up."

Effective Public Comment




Zuma Dogg and MayorSam have teamed to bring you clips of a couple of Councilpeople, including the Prez, yapping through what was otherwise noteworthy public comment. But of course this has been the way Councilmembers have treated public comment for decades. Remember Mike Hernandez hopping around? I don't think he was ever even seated during any public comment session in his whole tenure of office.

Here are some pointers on making effective public comment:

  1. Wear business attire. Pretend you're going to court. You are: these people are the law, these people make laws.
  2. If you have prepared remarks, make sure they're ready to go, and take them out of something clean and formidable quickly when you get to the mike.
  3. Try to talk to one of your own council district deputies before you make the comment. Try to draw it to your Council district deputy's attention that you're going to make the comment a day or two ahead of time, and try to give the deputy a draft or copy of who you are and what you are going to say, with contact information. Ask them what you think might make public comment most valuable for them. Sure, it may be insincere. But you won't look like Leonard Shapiro reacting to the morning's headlines, which you should do at your local blog anyway.
  4. Follow the order, "Mr. President Garcetti, Madame Pro Tem Greuel, Councilman LaBonge (or whomever your Councilman is), and members of City Council..."
  5. If you are even tangentially affiliated with any organization, make it known. The more City of LA voters tied to that organization the better. Naming churches, temples, and mosques in the City are great attention getters. So are city-based businesses and organizations.
  6. Make no predictions of doom, and certainly make no threats. The prophet is unwelcome in his or her own country.
  7. Be bullet-point quick. Sequential arguments piled one on top of the other are most effective.
  8. Excepting causa celebres when you or your "team" have invited media, this is not a moment for dramatic oratory. This is a moment to be a teacher, to educate. What is Council missing? What story didn't they have in Committee on your issue, what story won't they be getting from the CLA? That is what will be best heard.

After your public comment, leave the mike stand. But don't sit down; walk to some place where you can be approached. Maybe there is someone in the gallery who wants to talk to you; maybe even someone from a Council office. Hang out standing wherever you think is a good spot to hang out for a minute or two, to enable any new friend to get to know you.

That's your right. It's your Chamber as much as theirs.

Labor march gathering for Tuesday; Jamiel's Law in Wave, CityBeat

A gathering phalanx of laborers will march an intriguing route---from the La Brea Tar Pits to the Port of Los Angeles---beginning next Tuesday, April 15, to raise awareness of the discrepancy between the cost of living and wages, the Wave. Los Angeles to the marchers is "the low wage capital of the United States." The 28-mile march will last three days.

The Wave also reports on the plea in City Council by the father of Jamiel Shaw, Jr. to end Special Order 40. If you missed it, the Accused killer of Jamiel Shaw Jr., Pedro Espinoza, pleads not guilty.

Also add CityBeat to the growing list of publications that are taking a peek at Jamiel's Law, and even daring to call it that by name. CityBeat even went so far as to make mention of Walter Moore's wife Judy's appearance in Chamber Tuesday.

BTW, when those marchers get to the Port of LA, they'll arrive in a diesel-death zone that LA Sniper Alan Mittlestadt says has been written off by Antonio, in his CityBeat piece this week.

Who?


Carmel it aint


Ron Kaye knew LA the way Tom Landry knew a football field: every inch, for decades. The Daily News's new top editor, Carolina Garcia, at least has one thing going for her: she won't be biased by much previous knowledge of the gridiron of Los Angeles.

Who is Carolina Garcia?

Of the Monterey County Herald, a paper with a fifth of the circulation of the Daily News?

One thing jumps out at you on this impromptu c.v.: Carolina Garcia...

"Most dangerous story: 'Can’t recall anything that was especially dangerous...'"

The idea of a local top editor having had time to create such a document is an entertaining one. But certainly of equal intrigue will be Ms. Garcia's mixing with the same stellar, street-wise newsroom that has brought us, for example, the unparalleled coverage of the slaying of SWAT officer Randal Simmons. Does she know what such coverage takes? Will she deem it worthwhile?

It will certainly be new ground for her, as will learning the impact of gang life in Los Angeles; in fact, there are probably more dangerous gangs in LA than there are homicides in Monterery County each year. I don't have the figures, but there are almost certainly at minimum a dozen times more homicides in the City of Los Angeles than in the County of Monterey.


A top ed at a newspaper can float above this a bit, as Russ Stanton seems to be doing at the Times, spending his days greenlighting apologies, retractions and whatnot. But that seems unlikely at the Daily News, already tightly held, where Ron Kaye knew the paper's newsroom best of all the paper's sections. Wishing Carolina Garcia all the best in the transition, and hoping she finds the high drama of the big town down south to her liking.