It's almost unbelievable, the hatchet job Times scribe David Lazarus did on Sunset Junction on KPCC this morning. Listen for yourself.
First, he brings in Andrea Domanick, from the LA Weekly--which used to get beaucoup ad revenue from the Fair but no longer does--and brings in nobody from the opposing side. He does insist that he tried the organizers--who were actively trying to save the event even as Lazarus was on the air.
[No, my phone didn't ring this morning, either. Much of the show was devoted to rebutting many of my complaints about the way the City killed Sunset Junction--see links below.]
Domanick proceeds to insist that the festival generates "literally millions of dollars" every year, and smug Lazarus takes her word for it.
[Note: the entry fee is $25. Sunset Junction may draw up to 10,000 people--really doubtful, but it may. But let's pretend it draws 25,000. $25 x 25,000 = $625,000. (Reports of up to 100,000 are greatly exaggerated--to see what 100,000 people look like check out the photo on the left). Given those numbers: do you really think the festival generates even much beyond one million dollars--let alone "literally millions of dollars"? And of course, the bulk of the money goes to artist fees and advertising.]
The first caller David Lazarus takes, predictably, is a Silver Lake Neighborhood Council member (see my item yesterday--these were last elected by a whopping 219 voters, total). "Rusty" says that "the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council represents the entire community of Silver Lake. Not just the merchants on the street." I wonder whose arguments he's addressing? He also admits that "the Council office was very frustrated with Sunset Junction organizers."
The second call he takes is from Dana, another neighbor complainer.
The third doesn't fit the show's script, and Lazarus argues with him.
"None of this has been paid," the fourth caller says.
Yusef Robb of Councilman Garcetti's office today tells me that these bills became "unpaid" because of a City ordinance passed less than two years ago, and promises to provide me with that Ordinance.
Ultimately, this is just "a story about unpaid bills," Lazarus concludes. Domanack then vilifies the promoter. The End. Thirty-one years, the whole gay and lesbian legacy of Sunset Junction: gone with the wind.
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