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Los Feliz Ledger publishes story all about local site, doesn't name it*

The Los Feliz Ledger floats a bizarre story about Greater Griffth Park Neighborhood Council's discussion at its March meeting of anonymous attacks on NC councilmember Mark Mauceri at a site it doesn't name, and the body's discussion, led by NC councilmember Jeff Gardner, of whether or not Mauceri responded in accordance within the NC's code of conduct when responding to slurs written about him in the blogosphere.

The site at the center of the controversy is Griffith Park Wayist (note: it is a blog I once wrote for while not operating street-hassle). The site is unnamed in the piece, though NC councilmember Tor Hyams labeled the site's material “tripe. We shouldn’t even be giving this the time of day." Some of Mauceri's comments about which the board discussed may also have appeared here at street-hassle. Quoting from the piece:

Mauceri countered that his critical postings were a response to destructive attacks aimed at him and other board members by a group of activists who publish material using pseudonyms, or pen names, on a certain local blog site.

At issue were a series of opinion pieces posted on the site. The site routinely writes posts about GGPNC business and regularly take vitriolic, profane aim at Mauceri, other members of the Los Feliz Forward slate, as well as other public officials.

The site received a cease and desist email from an attorney representing Mauceri on March 19, 2010 (a letter I was invited to read and offer comments and counsel on at the time).

The site also used to call the monthly Los Feliz Ledger the "Los Feliz Liar," as it does in this post about Mauceri. The blog has in recent weeks taken all its posted comments offline.

Posting and administrative permisssions at Griffith Park Wayist are handled by Kristin Sabo, a Sunland Tujunga community activist who tends to Amir's Garden in Griffith Park and who is known to have issues with Mauceri and City Council candidate Tomas O'Grady. A blogger at the site named "Griffith Park Wayist" remains anonymous, as do the standing posts of a blogger named "Green Stealth," who no longer appears listed as a site contributor.

I removed all my own posts at the site when I left it; some of them appear here at street-hassle.

*UPDATE: the site Griffith Park Wayist is referenced in the issue in a Letter from Publisher Allison Ferraro in which she denounces Ms. Sabo, and adds, "If this group won't stop spewing graffiti on the bathroom wall, then at least they should have the guts to post their names to their rants." And she adds "Efforts to contact Ms. Sabo were unsuccessful. Emails were also unanswered."

Another Terrace Morning

There are two schools of thought regarding the Mayoral candidacy of Kevin James. One is that he starts out at five percent. The other is that he starts out at twenty-five percent.

Consider the first school: five percent. On the political spectrum, gay, Republican and proud is infrared, invisible to all but honeybees. There's no real organization. There's a young political director who's apprenticed on citywide campaigns but never run one himself. There are not one but several eight-hundred pound gorillas all over the political map, some declared and some not, but all of whom know the city better than James, and all of whom (except Caruso, who most now believe is not running) know city politics better.

But the other school for the higher achievers is just around the corner. It looks at people like Brad Smith and Walter Moore: disloyal opposition, vastly underfunded, mistake-prone...and still, by simply not being attached to City Hall, made their heir apparent opponents extremely nervous. The nervousness was recently compounded by the fact that while Mitch Englander got more votes than any standing City Councilmember in the last election--which says enough on its own--Brad Smith bagged almost half as many as Englander, with many missteps and a tenth of the cash on hand. And Moore did what he did in a cone of media silence all about his candidacy--much of it attributable to the cantankerousness of Moore himself.

No, there is nobody else like Kevin James in the race. He is far more likable than Moore and at minimum as likable as Smith (consider this: Smith was on James' radio show once, but James is on James's show every night). Like Moore, he begins the race as the pitchfork people's candidate, and figures to remain so throughout. That would appear to start him out parking closer to the second school than the first.

° ° ° °

Some community meeting that was, on the downtown stadium for the team to be named later. "In attendance were lobbyists, carpenters, land-use consultants and transit activists, among others." Everyone but community people, it sounds like.

Councilman Tom LaBonge was astonished yesterday to discover that LA doesn't really have 4 million residents on the books. Tom, relax, there are about 5 million here if you count the undocumented.

The Weekly picks up the story on one of UCLA Chancellor Gene Block's most expensive staff expenditures. Block's wife, a medical technologist, also became an "Associate to the Chancellor" some time ago.

Analysis: State GOP blew it, bigtime

If you wonder why I blogroll Bill Whalen, he demonstrated why today. As Republicans go, he's rational:

"These opportunities don't come up too much in Sacramento," said Bill Whalen, a GOP political consultant who was an advisor to former Gov. Pete Wilson.

"If I'm the Republicans … I would argue for a minimalist approach," he said. "Be able to declare victory and retreat. … That should have been part of the calculus."

Yes, the Governor also came up short. He was banking on there being four such rational Republicans in the State legislature. There weren't, and now Republicans will have no say in the State's budget decisions for the next fifteen months. Those decisions will be tough--but they will be far tougher on Republicans than on Democrats.

UPDATE: GOP hatchet ad, blaming Brown of course, is just too dumb.

New boss in town

In a bit of an upset, the UTLA has elected Warren Fletcher to its powerful president's slot, KABC reports.

Fletcher isn't a firebrand as a speaker, but he carried the right message to union rank and file: this is a great union, don't tread on us, and it's really time for a change because we can see where this has been going for five awful years. He's a big picture guy known to be a capable organizer and he won't spend as much time sweating political details as his predecessor, AJ Duffy, who had problems attracting and fielding credible candidates for school board. He's an interesting complement to new Superintendent John Deasy, who smiles a lot and tries to keep a friendly face on at all times, even while trying his best to hand over as many schools to charter groups as he can.

SEIU nabob Julie Butcher calls the election "great news for Los Angeles."

Tesla brings suit against the BBC

The promising California car company Tesla has brought a suit against the BBC for airing a segment concluding that Teslas "don't work."

Information on Tesla's side of the lawsuit is here.

Another Terrace Morning

The race to succeed Jane Harman is shaping up as a two-woman contest. Debra Bowen secured the endorsement of Howard Dean in the past week, and already is the progressive's darling. Janice Hahn has some ties to national politics too, but thus far has not played them up. The idea of replacing Harman with Bowen of course has considerable appeal to the DailyKos set and their nationwide progressive loyalists.

There will be a runoff in this race if nobody wins outright on May 17, and the runoff will be between the top two vote-getters, regardless of party. Bowen's biggest concern, ironically, is not Hahn but Marcy Winograd, another progressive and anti-war activist who maintains a small but loyal base in the district. On the Republican side, Mike Gin figures to be the beneficiary of most of the ironclad Republican votes, and he could emerge as the second name in a runoff should Winograd outperform.

Another Terrace Morning

Day off. See you tomorrow. If you need a local news fix, I recommend The City Maven. If you wonder what's happening in the great State of California, follow John Myers on Twitter.

Weekly rips Krerkorian, Council, Korea, &c.--and remains truly amazing at stealing ancient blog posts

Showing signs of emerging life today, the LA Weekly's two tippity-top news bloggers, Jill Stewart and Tibby Rothman, quoted Councilman Paul Krekorian as being down with Korean developer-owner Korean Air et al. in the company's Seoul-like plans for the redevelopment of the Wilshire Grand Hotel site.
"The more I hear about this project, the better I like it!" Krekorian insists.
The Weekly also heartily pats itself on the back for saying something well before other print media:
The Wilshire Grand Hotel skyscrapers had received only minimal coverage by the media until a flurry of stories in the past week -- led off by the Weekly on Wednesday, then CurbedLA on Thursday, and finally hitting the front page of the Los Angeles Times on Saturday.
Yes, that's their link, not ours. They had this story on Wednesday! Aren't you impressed with the Weekly by now?

By the way, here's a Downtown News piece on Wilshire Grand redevelopment plans from December 17, 2010.

Oh, and here's a Curbed LA post from August 2010 of last year that blows the lid off the signage issues.

But this is only "minimal coverage"--the Weekly's coverage is the real thing!

UPDATE: Hahahahah, K-Rod chimes in: "There are places in the city where billboards should be allowed to burn bright, where outdoor graphics should be bold and distracting. If you can’t do that at the corner of Figueroa and Wilshire, I don’t know where you could." Even Kevin can lay to waste yet another idiot take from the news ed of the LA Weekly.

EARLIER: Weekly prints unsourced, anonmous email rumor as election coverage, Weekly: Kevin James is still gay,
Century Boulevard, Sourcing Trujillo, Sourcing Stewart, I know. 96th St., Drex & Sex, &c., 96th Street, 96th Street, 92nd Street.

Times, Daily News op-eds surrender to DWP interests

Cabazon, 3.27.11

I was out of town on the weekend. Of course, while I was away, Saturday was the day that the LA Times chose to deliver a complimentary hardcopy "Los Angeles Times Select" to my doorstep, to let any prospective tagger or worse who passed by know that I was gone. The paper sat mulching the drought-tolerant blue fescue all through Saturday night and Sunday. Thanks, wasteful idiots. The paper went straight into the recycle bin late Sunday night.

But delivering unwanted tree-killing print is not half as bad as watching both local newspapers sell ordinary citizens down the DWP's tapped-out rivers.

In this piece, Jim Newton at the Times has simply become an extension of Joe Ramallo's PR department at the DWP.

More than one person has told me that former news-hound Newton is way to obsequious towards the rich and powerful to be a decent opinion writer, and in a Beutner-cuddling column like this, giving S. David Freeman a chance to cry on his shoulder, you see exactly what they mean.

"What is fundamentally misguided, however, is the assumption that Los Angeles residents are getting a raw deal on rates, at least when it comes to electricity," Newton says.

It's the exact same thing the agency's PR department says.

Mr. Newton, we the people OWN this utility and have for decades. Our electricity rates could be half of what they are if we didn't have crooks running the Department and the average salary for a line worker wasn't in six figures.

But while the former fishwrap of record became an extension of the power side of the DWP for the day and Newton was busy celebrating former agency chief S. David Freeman, former agency chief H. David Nahai had to drop this piece on California's water system into the Daily News. A little more tethered to reality than Newton's, Nahai with Gretchen McClain end up urging rate hikes anyway, these on the water side rather than the power side.

So there you have it this morning, classic advocacy journalism at both local papers--on behalf of the City's richest, most belligerent, most corrupt agency, and against ordinary DWP ratepayers. Please don't leave these City Hall-cuddling newspapers on my drought-tolerant blue fescue anymore.

The Luxury Highrise

Those with New York envy, beware. A snippet of the book From Bauhaus to Our House, Tom Wolfe, 1981:

The only people left trapped in worker housing in America today are those who don't work at all and are on welfare--these are the sole inhabitants of "the projects"--and, of course, the urban rich who live in places such as the Olympic Tower on Fifth Avenue in New York. Since the 1950's the term "luxury highrise" has come to denote a certain type of apartment house that is in fact nothing else but the Siedlungen of Frankfurt and Berlin, with units stacked up thirty, forty, fifty stories high, to be rented or sold to the bourgeoisie. Which is to say, pure nonbuurgeois housing for the bourgeoisie only. Sometimes the towers are of steel, concrete, and glass; sometimes of glass, steel, and small glazed white or beige bricks. Always the celings are low, often under eight feet, the hallways are narrow, the rooms are narrow, even when they're long, the bedrooms are small (Le Corbusier was always in favor of that, the walls are thin, the doorways and windows have no casings, the joints have no moldings, the walls have no baseboards, and teh windows don't open, although small vents or jalousies may be provided. The construction is invariably cheap in the pejorative as well as the literal sense. That builders could present these boxes in the 1950s, without a twitch of the nostril, as luxury, and that well-educated men and women could accept them, without a blink, as luxury--here is objective testimony, from those too dim for irony, to the aesthetic sway of the compound aesthetic, of the Silver Prince and his colonial legions, in America following the Second World War.

But these "luxury highrises" make the NYTimes easy to deliver from doorstep to doorstep.

Numbers games

What is the City's deficit for the next fiscal year? $350 million (January estimate)? $404 million (last week)? $500 million (yesterday)? The Mayor thought yesterday it will be $500 million--and it's important when a Mayor says such a thing. Media mostly think it's $350 million, because that's what the Times reported--two months ago.

In fact, the deficit estimate can--and should--change weekly, even daily. The truth is that the City has no way of even estimating within $20 million (4% variance) how much next year's deficit will be, because the revenue hasn't been collected yet, and projections are only projections, nothing more. All these numbers are best estimates numbers, and the best estimates change all the time. It would be fair reporting to report that the size of the deficit is large and changing all the time, and that reporters don't seem to be aware of this. But they should, if they are reporting, follow the matter closely enough to be within 10% of the latest figures.

Though we can lay much blame on the Mayor's doormat, we are also as a whole seeing remarkable levels of cognitive dissonance from the Mayor's critics on the coming budget. Most of this willful cognitive dissonance is being conducted by corporate-cuddling Republicans hopeful to bash unions and to lay as much blame on pension plans as possible. The pension discussion is mostly artificial.

I am a critic of the Mayor too, but the fact that revenue has so precipitously declined in the City is also a regional phenomenon, even a State one. This revenue decline has nothing to do with civic pensions.

The correct solutions to the coming lean years are two: to pressure the Mayor's office and Council to join the Governor and dismantle and reconstitute the CRA, and to commence a dialog with the City's unions about either borrowing from their pension funds or float a stopgap bond.

What matters more than the numerical size of the deficit is the ratio of the deficit to the size of the final budget--which hasn't been determined yet. Cities can survive up to a 30% deficit with difficulty, even over a few years--but without approaching bankruptcy. Responsible adults will make sure that it happens, while childish ones will continue to make noise and wag fingers.

Villaraigosa to USA: "Unions are our partners, not our enemies"

That's what the Mayor said after inking a deal with LA's civic union workers that requires them to pay into their health plans and shaves about eight percent of the City's coming deficit over the next three years. TCM has some extra details. The street-hassle plan to save the City by borrowing from the union's pension funds is still not on any visible tabletop anywhere, but by the Mayor announcing that unions are indeed civic partners, the City may be one step closer to the borrowing plan.

Another Terrace Morning

UPDATE: Cousin Bell tweets from Southeast Asia:

Quake is "very deep" in the ground, centered in Myanmar. Follow Wildbell @ Twitter.

Bullet points from a Public Policy Institute of California poll:
  • Public support has dropped for holding a June special election on extending temporary tax and fee increases.
  • Nearly half of Californians say the amount of money that state and local governments spend on public employee pension or retirement systems is a big problem.
  • Sixty-two percent of Californians think Congress and the Obama administration are not doing enough to help create jobs.
The key finding is the middle one. It indicates that the right wing noise machine has derailed scrutiny of Wall Street and real estate failures and has had good success in vilifying unions as the source of economic evils once again. Unions are slated to fight back.

Can't LA do anything right? the former fishwrap of record asks in an editorial about the massage parlour mess in Eagle Rock that is spreading to other parts of the City.
The that Los Angeles didn't keep up with a 2009 state law changing certification requirements for legitimate massage therapists. The law swept aside local regulation of therapists in favor of uniform state certification, but it allowed cities to demand that massage businesses show their state credentials. Other cities in the region required businesses to do just that, but in Los Angeles, officials merely asked the businesses if they were state certified. Presumably, many that had no state approval said "yes" because they didn't have to show any proof.
&c. But this may also be the libertarian-legacy side of Los Angeles coming out, via the natural chasms of anarchy that attend an incompetent oligarchy. Most of us are aware that certain kinds of prostitution are now more tolerated than they were even five years ago, as well as certain stripes of drug use. Even the staid scribes at the Times tacitly admit as much when the editorial tepidly concludes that "massage parlors have arguably made northeast Los Angeles the region's prostitution capital. Angelenos certainly want their city leaders to bring in more jobs, but this is not what they had in mind." No, maybe not, but the mere act of identifying the parlors as providing less-desirable jobs--rather than denouncing them as criminal rackets--is another nod towards legitimizing the shops.

If you catch a cold at one, just know--the hospital remains no place to go if you're sick. "A deadly bacteria thought to be resistant to all known remedies has made its way to Los Angeles County medical facilities, officials said this week, adding urgency to the dire need for more powerful antibiotics....'Wash your hands, and stay out of the hospital if you can,' he said. 'If you are in the hospital, get out as soon as possible. And tell your local elected officials to work to fix this problem.'"

Tax breaks for Twitter? The tweeterie may move into the Tenderloin, and if it does, Nob Hill nabobs want to know what is the right amount tax break to give. Wouldn't it be nice and simple if taxes were simply assessed fairly for all?

What's happened to biotech in California? Not much according to the SF Business Journal. Massachusetts is catching up, thanks to government support.

The LA Press Club tonight celebrates the story that lead to the suicide of one teacher and the cancellation of thousands of subscriptions. Chronic teacher-basher Jill Stewart hosts the self-congratulatory panel.

Anaheim moves Kings bond hearing to 3/29

Franchise mover?

Get ready for a yank from Sacto to Anaheim for the Kings basketball franchise.

"Our city is a first-class destination. Adding a second professional sports team at Honda Center is very exciting, as long as the city and the taxpayers are protected," Tait said. "And they will be."

The bonds will be discussed at 5 p.m. March 29 at City Hall.

Kings owners, who have filed trademarks for names including the Anaheim Royals, have until April 18 to file for relocation.
&c. The franchise has not been the same since--you know when.

Weekly: Kevin James is still gay

Mayoral candidate Kevin James has stated what has already been known to most everyone who has known the candidate, and the LA Weekly has reported it as news anyway. Or maybe as publicity: "People may jump to the wrong conclusions if they only know his party registration," says John Thomas, a political consultant for James, "and that's why we wanted to get his record out there."

So it is now as out there as the Weekly can put it. The candidate is also still white and still somewhat pasty, although less pasty than he was last August, so some things do indeed change.

There was a polite embargo on the announcement of James's gaiety, and several of us politely waited on reporting what was already known, out of our enormous respect for the courageous reporters at The Weekly, who have dared once again to publish a story that is not a story for the sake of saying something sugary and feelgoody about a Republican candidate in an otherwise preference-free nonpartisan race.

Another Terrace Morning

Lonely planet: Wilbur Avenue.

I hope you haven't come here looking for real news today.

The Wilbur Avenue lane striping fiasco, which is really a face-off between cyclists and car commuters, is difficult to read politically. Both sides are angered by the perceived recklessness of the other side. Cyclists are not popular but they are often right about traffic safety; politicians, sensing that there aren't good arguments opposing them, seem to be giving the cyclists a nod-and-a-wink, tacitly supporting them even while declaring their own fealty to cars. Drivers don't have good counter-arguments other than their own superior numbers for maintaining status quo street striping; but one video of a reckless, insistent cyclist might mobilize the drivers into a more formidable political group.

Eagle Rock has become a haven for erotic massage parlors. Funny how both candidates in the recent Council race there missed this.

From the Times site, KTLA also has a story about a tree in Eagle Rock not been removed in "a timely manor." Timely Manor would be a good Harry Potter locale, methinks.

Following the prompt of the increasingly whiny and always late-to-the party LA Conservancy, Tim Rutten says LA should keep its Charles Alston and Hale Woodruff murals and not let the Smithsonian acquire them. Here they have been neglected for a half-century; elsewhere they might be admired; no matter to trite Tim. Here's his big conclusion: "The Smithsonian can't be blamed for wanting the murals, though it might keep in mind that, while the Elgin Marbles look fine in the British Museum, they'd look a lot better back on the Parthenon." And all that stuff at our Getty in Malibu would look better in Greece and Rome, and the paintings and furniture at the Huntington would find more tasteful trappings in England and France.

Adventism is growing in America
. Also, clambakes are down...

Arne Duncan praises Mayor, LAUSD charter sellouts

Obama administration charter school mandarin Arne Duncan spoke to educators in Los Angeles today, and praised all the local corporate-cuddling, teacher-bashing charter sellouts.
In Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, school board president Monica Garcia and the incoming LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy, “L.A. has a trio of tremendous leaders who want to take the hard road, not the easier path,” Duncan said.
&c. All hate the teacher's union, and are beholden billionaires: Deasy worked for the Gates Foundation; Villaraigosa works mostly for Eli Broad; and Monica Garcia works once removed from a billionaire, mostly through the Mayor since serving as Jose Huizar's chief of staff when the Councilman was on the school board.

Another Terrace Morning

You guys all go out long...

Neighborhood Council advocates had their say with the Mayor yesterday regarding the City budget. (No, those are not Neighborhood Council advocates above). One of the recommendations is the formation of a "Citizen Commission on Public Employee Pension(s) and Benefit Review." City Maven Alice Walton has details of the two-hour meeting. The recommendations seem timid and ignore the size of the police and fire budgets, the elephants in the room. Nobody seems to have a lot of confidence that the City can recover on its own. Neighborhood Councils themselves will likely face cuts up to 20%.

"To thine own self be true," &c., Paul Hatfield quotes from Hamlet regarding City budget discussions, apparently unaware that Polonius's notoriously sententious speech is meant to demonstrate what a windbag the character is. Accountants should really lay off the drama flourishes. I'll bet he would also be horrified at my suggestion that the City solve its pending fiscal crisis by borrowing from the pension plans it is beholden to.

Occasional demographer Eric Richardson has some new numbers on downtown, based on the recent census. "Population in the main tracts that define Downtown grew from 35,884 in 2000 to 51,329 in 2010." Plenty of stats with no real shockers.

The City's Housing Authority Board fired its own chief executive, Rudolf Montiel.

Those who ran in the rain-drenched marathon prove that the City is not soft, the former fishwrap of record says.

Dan Walters of the Sacto Bee says that the Governor's budget plan "sinking in ideological quicksand, abetted by outside interests." With his usual clarity, the Governor calls the Republican's attempt to block progress on issues a "zone defense."

"One of the challenges is they believe in kind of a zone defense, where they want five or six people in the room at the same time without the level of experts and staff that it takes to vet through some of the complex ideas that are being argued about," the Governor summarized.

In a surprise suit from environmentalists, a judge has blocked an air quality cap-and-trade law for not considering enough options.

Full screen pop-up ads at media sites are getting ridiculous. Not only that, they're killing clicks. If you hit the Daily News or NBC4 for one story, you won't hit them for another. Once a day's enough.

Gore in Winter

PHOTO: Hedi Slimane

After five years in Italy, you become a monument. After ten years, you become a relic. And after twenty years, you become a ruin. More photos at Hedi Slimane Diary.

Another Terrace Morning

Orlov files on the coming Mayor's race, the Kevin James announcement, and Cooley lending his support if not his endorsement.

His paper's editorial board, not known for its financial acumen, editorializes about the need for the Mayor and Council to "toughen up." Nobody even seems to know about my idea, which I borrowed from history I lived through, in which the City borrows from the very pension funds it is so beholden to.

Republicans don't want consumer protections when it comes to buying homes. The closing docs to a mortgage are over fifty pages long, and for first time buyers, they haven't seen a single page before. Debtors are also going to jail in increasing numbers. Republicans are also keeping amateur web programmers busy.

San Francisco is talking about banning unsolicited Yellow Pages directories.

"We don't see much connection between the alleged malfeasance of a few CalPERS officials and the financial troubles afflicting most public pension funds," the former fishwrap of record editorializes. If not, why go muckraking then? An editorial encourages as much, though.

The Belasco Theater opened downtown this weekend, after a 26-year dark spell. It's next to the Mayan.

Why does Carmen Trutanich keep hitting on Studio City Homeowners Association? Is it love, or superstition, or preaching to a handy choir? "It was the Valley that put me in office," Nuch admits. Now he's quoting Darryl Gates on his memos and whining about being obliged to move attorneys from criminal to civil. "If a DUI's got a point-oh-eight, maybe I don't file," the man who filed and dropped against immigration protesters admits.

Those 49 units coming to Riverside Drive

3160 Riverside, presently.

The developer of that 49-unit by-right project on Riverside Drive is Fore Property Company--of Las Vegas. (Again, the money paid in rentals will flee the City, even the State). The firm specializes in low-income housing, and hopes to secure City funds for the project.

The letter the Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council sent in support of the project reads:
The Governing Board of the Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council concurs with the conclusions and comments expressed by the members of our Planning, Zoning and Historical Preservation Committee in the following portion of the minutes from their publicly noticed, regular meeting Wednesday, March 2, 2011.
Those minutes state in part that "one of the options financing they are considering is going through the Los Angeles Housing Department (LAHD) and while community support does not guarantee getting financing from LAHD, it gives them a "leg up" on properties that do not have community support."

These are low-income units but they're not really for young people. The 49 units will be composed of 34 two bedroom and 15 three bedroom units. The builder gets a tax credit for making 30% of the units three bedrooms. There are no one-bedroom units.

All tenants are required to have "jobs or a source of income." Seventy percent of the tenants are anticipated to be single mothers with children. "We look for a 2 to 1 ratio of income to rent, so that the majority of income is not allocated to rent." Really?'

EARLIER: A Letter from the GGPNC, LaBonge and GGPNC fast-tracking more rentals.

Mimosas on the Terrace

The bad weather could last all day and into tomorrow.

At last, a conservative who has been teacher-bashing on behalf of the charters apologizes "for thinking you took advantage of the taxpayers"--to his teacher-wife, to whom he expresses his contrition.

Austin Beutner goes old media with an op-ed on new tech, hoping to snare a manufacturer who might convert buses to electricity. "At the meeting of the MTA Board of Directors this week, we will propose a new pilot program, in which the agency would order up to 30 electric buses for trial circulation. This pilot will allow us to see if the technology works and equally importantly find out, as some studies seem to show, that electric buses might be cheaper to operate over their life cycle than combustion buses."

Tim Rutten doesn't like nonpartisan civic elections, but we do. If you can find a legitimate argument in his argument on behalf of partisan ones, let me know. Mostly, it sounds like he worries that newspapers are losing influence.

Almost immediately comes reason why it's not a good idea: the California GOP, meeting this weekend, tried to close a luncheon with pollster Frank Luntz to the press. They hastily re-opened it. Parties will drive out more vote, all right. But we'll know less about the candidates.

The California legislature is also contemplating assessing a State tax on Internet sales, long in coming.

Columnist Ben Boychuk says in the Sacto Bee that the nuclear panic is over not much. In fact, nobody's been harmed in the United States by nuclear power in fifty years. Handy fact: there are 444 nuclear plants worldwide. Some are better made than others.

Trujillo on happy hour email: "We'll make it a teachable moment"

Huffman and friends.

Brendan Huffman
and Alice Walton interviewed Mike Trujillo on LA Talk Radio Thursday, another stop on the Trujillo Redemption Tour.

Huffman--great name for a pr guy with VICA roots--says "Apparently an email went out with your name on it..." apparently, because maybe Huffman somehow wasn't aware (?) that his sometime partner on the show Ed Headington was one of the email recipients.

Trujillo did not disclose anything new about why he sent out the happy hour email (aka #happyhouremail) to over twenty Huizar supporters, but he promises to explain the errant missive at a later date in a USC prof's Dan Schnur's class, saying "We'll make it a teachable moment."

Then Huffman asks "Who was on your distribution list and who forwarded it?"

Trujillo says he's "in no position to speculate on who forwarded it." Which is not precisely to say "I don't know"--in fact it's not close to saying that. But as we said earlier, we think he might actually know.

In another segment, City Maven Walton, dissing the UCLA coed who made inappropriate remarks about the Asian students on a YouTube vid gone viral, sneers "What do you expect of a public school?" Walton is a USC grad, via Northwestern.

EARLIER: Jose Huizar fires Mike Trujillo, Rudy Martinez milking it, Sourcing Trujillo, Sourcing Stewart, B-B-B-Busted?

Another Terrace Morning

Warren Christopher died.

The Downtown News has the story on the sale of a would-be Clean Tech downtown center, now handed off to a Culver City firm, Genton Property Group, by the CRA, for "a depreciated amount." This is not the Hewitt Street site that the CRA and DWP acquired last April, but one further south, near Washington and Santa Fe. “We’re selling it loaded up with a whole lot of requirements that really do, in my mind, equal the value,” Madeline Janis told the paper. “We’re getting a good deal here because we’re getting a lot of really good jobs and a whole vision for potentially creating the centerpiece for a clean tech industry in a dilapidated industrial area of our city.”

Would anyone other than the lunatic fringe at the LA Weekly really like it if non-union labor were constructing the Metro's Expo Line? Their headline suggests the paper is disappointed that construction of bridges won't go to unskilled laborers. I'm sure they would rather the hazardous, vital, important infrastructure work go to itinerant laborers working as cheaply and with as few trade skills and worker benefits as possible.

Studio City NC decides not to help out Little Dom's, 6-5. Off the top of my head that it's better to see a 6-5 vote on a planning issue--which may indicate that an NC doesn't know how to feel about it either--than an NC nodding along even as the Council's planning deputy is in the house, and later trying to say it doesn't matter because it's a meaningless letter anyway, as recently happened with the Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council. Earlier: A letter from the GGPNC, Renee Weitzer calls City Attorney's Office 'The Black Hole of Calcutta."

A reader submits that the movie poster on the left is more à propos of the Kevin James campaign for mayor than the one Walter Moore--who as far as we know is not associated with the James effort--submitted to his audience this past week. Either way, Kevin James movie posters certainly promise to be a treasure trove of alternative campaign images for the alternative candidate.

Tim Cavanaugh ratchets up the case against CRAs in Reason. He calls the California plan to kill CRAs fiscally sound, morally right and probably doomed. Via Ron Kaye.

State Republicans got together beginning yesterday and started tripping over each other immediately. Big GOP donors don't like the idea of handing over too much endorsement power to actual voters, fearing the rise of Tea Party nutjobs.

One of my favorite wishful-thinking comments ever left here was by some pajama nostradamus who insisted "Latinos are switching to Meg" about a week before the last election. It was just another, er, little white lie, but how are Republicans actually doing with Latinos? "Latino voters are widely negative about the Republican Party (26 percent favorable/47 percent unfavorable/27 percent no opinion) and widely positive about the Democrat Party (62/22/17)."
What's funny is, this is a GOP pollster concluding this. Democratic pollster Andre Pineda tweets: "CA GOP trying to get smart about Latinos with a less than smart poll. Fine by me."

Did I mention David Hernandez is going to Spain and Portugal this week? He is sensibly taking his tourist dollars to the socialist-dominated Iberian peninsula...

All this going on, and the LA Times runs a pie-in-the-sky editorial about making the car-pool lanes toll lanes, or something. Somebody downtown must have been late to something.

They meant DAMAGE

Whoa! When they said "damaged"--they meant DAMAGED. Via The Herald Monterey.

Note: the photo is a bit of an optical illusion. It looks like a bridge has been chop-blocked, but it's really a guard-rail hanging there, and about a twenty-foot segment of highway.

High risk? Sensational segment?

A "pretty good geologist" everyone wants to be wrong.

Another Terrace Morning

PHOTO: David Berger

KPCC portrays mayoral candidate Kevin James as an entertainment attorney "who likes both Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton." James says thanks to his radio show, he's talked "to thousands of people" about what's up in Los Angeles...he spoke to two more on Wednesday.

The Hollywood Borders--a discount bookseller that ran local real bookstores out of business, situated in a mixed use, 300-unit transit hub development that brought nothing but congestion to Vine--is on the nationwide chain's execution list. This masterpiece of retail-based, hello-goodbye urban planning was brought to you by Eric Garcetti and "smart-growth" developers Larry Bond and investor Magic Johnson. It opened in 2003, impacted longstanding local purveyors such as Aldine's, changed the character of a once-unique neighborhood, and good luck with the lease after 2012. Adjacent Hollywood Farmer's Market is in some peril too.

Councilman Bill Rosendahl raises his voice to question the City's CLA and CAO about whether or not it's true that no public money would be necessary to build a stadium downtown.

Is the LA Times actually going to take home a story at the Housing Authority, or just flirt and dance with it? Jury's out. This is one of the housing departments that had no idea how many rentals were in the City a few years ago and probably still doesn't.

How can you set housing policy without knowing the City's owner-occupied to renter ratio?* The presumption that more is better does not work when it's blindly filling the rental supply. Too many rentals in every market, and too few homes, is the main reason why everyone under forty's rent is subsidized by mom and dad: there are no starter homes available to top-market renters.

When a business actually moves from the 'burbs to the City, it's not just news, it's newspaper news. Angel City opens up on the 200 South block of Alameda today. The "oldest" local microbrew is not to my taste so I guess I won't be extended any samples; on tap I'm sticking with Sierra Nevada and I sincerely hope they pour it there. Have a looksee at the new digs today; they are fairly convenient to the Little Tokyo stop, four short blocks south. Image via hypebeast.

But don't mind me. I also found it annoying that brickyard representationalist JR, who adorned Angel City's loft district warehouse, scored two local covers this past month, and stunning soprano Nino Malchaieze got none. I guess it's not JR's fault for having a better publicist.

Hey hey Boo-boo: we hear that the fabled SoCal Connected Yogi-in-the-Park piece was hatchet-job from start to finish, dependent on makeshift visuals, in which the KCET program even failed to ask the Rec and Parks Commissioners a single unloaded question, like how prevalent and how permanent an acknowledgment of park donors might actually be.

Thanks to CityWatch, &c., for taking the drama of the last GGPNC meeting to da hoi pollu and trying their best to start a catfight between the City Attorney's office and LaBonge's that may actually draw some attention to something or other. It won't work, nothing will happen, the NC will capitulate to the wishes of the developer, the developer will run to the bank with the neighbors-friendly letter in pocket, &c. &c., but thanks again for trying.

*Psst.: it's 38-60%. In healthy cities, it's 50-50.

What was that IP?

Mayoral aide Jim Bickhart--busted.
"We got what we wanted on the RVs and campers. Who do we go after next? We can't stop until this place is all cleansed. Wash away the scum. ALL of it."

"Who cares? Villa-la-grossa is just as big a coward as Rosendahl. Maybe the Stakeholders are right - if these folks won't leave, we should get someone to come around with a semi, load the homeless scum into it like stinking sardines and drive them out to the Mojave. Dump 'em there in the dead of night blindfolded and drive away. Period. End of story."

"Next time one of those wussies heckles you, just pop 'em one. No. They protect scum, they should be treated like scum. It doesn't matter if they make money sucking on the government tit or if there Wolfgang frigging *#!%$!. Time is running short."
Look, what's running through many people's minds is that this invective is a match for Zuma Dogg. But Zuma Dogg's invective is signed by Zuma Dogg, and it never represents the City of Los Angeles in any official capacity.

Bickhart needs to be let go permanently. But the better news is that slowly but surely, the artificial walls protecting capricious, anonymous slanderers on the Internet are being eroded, for the betterment of public discourse. It is only a matter of time before a corporation is obliged to turn over its own web documentation for the sake of identifying a slander artist on company time.

Moore gives local media good chance to dismiss James early on

PHOTO: David Berger

Here is a great way to make sure Kevin James's candidacy for Mayor is not taken seriously by local media or local campaign philanthropists either: allow Walter Moore a self-anointed stakeholder spot in the campaign.

Two-thousand nine's second placer puts up a goofy-looking mock movie poster--in German, even--touting Kevin James's candidacy.

Moore says: "Because as the guy who finished second in the 2009 Mayoral race, let me tell you the key to victory: more money, more quickly."

We would contend that one of the keys to victory in any Mayoral race--or any civic race, for that matter--is not tying yourself too closely to Walter Moore too quickly.

If I were James, I'd tell Moore to back off.

Top o' the Terrace Morning

MT, Clover, Silver Lake Boulevard, 1.21.09

The petulant nannies in the City Attorney's office have Smear cuffed. Why? It looks like another First Amendment fracas from our beloved pagliacci.

Don't miss our overnight fisk of Futch.

And don't miss our overnight Osterizing of Ostrow, and Ostrow's Osterizing of us, as we ostracize a Los Feliz development.

Weekly prints unsourced, anonymous email rumor as election analysis

Is this another Scott Johnson blog post? No, it's the LA Weekly:
Campaign Consultants Stank up LA on March 8
The big winners in the City Council elections were the same people who won four years ago. The big losers: voters.
Incumbents won, voters lost. To the degree that voters went for LA Weekly-sanctioned candidates, anyway (they didn't). Someone get David Futch his crying blanket.

Wait, it gets worse. Way worse, laying blame on reckless, unfounded conspiracy theories, promulgated by an anony-emailer.

One campaign consultant, Eric Hacopian, urged District 14 challenger Rudy Martinez to go negative and stay negative, ironically turning off the newly awakened voters whom Martinez, as a challenger, badly needed to drag from their homes on Election Day if he wanted to win.

David, if you can help it, please stay away from local political analysis. You're just embarrassing yourself. Maybe forever. Attack politics certainly did not keep people away from the polls in CD 14.

In fact, the Weekly ran a cover on how nice a guy nice guy Stephen Box was, and Stephen Box kept his campaign nice the whole time, and Stephen Box knew about 500 times more about how the City actually works than Rudy Martinez did, and Stephen Box actually scored an enormous, far reaching civic victory involving millions of dollars and multiple-civic agencies just a week before the election--and yet Stephen Box in a heavier-voting district ended up with less than half as many votes as Rudy Martinez did in a lighter-voting one. That all shows you how well it works for a challenger to be a nice polite guy in a Council race.

But here's where it really gets odd. Futch continues:

In the wake of the March 8 disaster for Martinez, some horse-race theorists suggest Hacopian's motive was not to elect Martinez but to use him to slime Huizar in the event that the job-hopping Krekorian decides to run for city attorney — a job Huizar may desire.

Really? Where? Who are these horse-race theorists? Where is your source, David? Point to multiple theorists. Hell, point to even one. Even obliquely.

In fact--once again--Councilman Paul Krekorian himself endorsed Huizar, and even was phone banking for him the Saturday before the election.

There was a time in her career when Jill Stewart, the Weekly's slime-slinging news editor, was actually interested in facts. There was a time when she wouldn't publish single anonymous emails linking two Armenian surnames in a conspiracy as the word of multiple "horse-race theorists."

But Jill Stewart has not encouraged the Weekly to be accurate or even dependable of late when it comes to finding facts that support its weird editorial positioning.

Street-hassle also received a wacko theorist email echoing precisely the same conspiracy--the same email the Weekly did, apparently, which even announced it was going out to "multiple journalists." No, we didn't publish a word of it. Yes, this blog, even without a news editor looking over its shoulder, showed more restraint than the LA Weekly in publishing an incredible anonymous email rumor. We didn't find the author convincing, found that he was unwilling even to say his own true name in private, and so we didn't publish his wacko theories on why Eric Hacopian may have actually "sabotaged" Rudy Martinez by sliming Jose Huizar as best he could.

The only person we found who kept sabotaging Rudy Martinez, in fact, was Rudy Martinez.

We doubt, for instance, that anyone other than Rudy Martinez himself wandered into Northeast Station to file a complaint on the Trujillo happy hour email. We very strongly doubt that Eric Hacopian would advise his client to look like a man who fears happy hour email rhetoric in the middle of a heated political campaign.

We doubt that Eric Hacopian had Rudy Martinez bring up the fact of his own domestic abuse kerfluffle unprovoked at a campaign forum.

We doubt that Eric Hacopian tripped Rudy Martinez towards the end of the race, causing Martinez to be hospitalized overnight.

Though we did carry on a small discussion about the race with the wacko theorist.

Also--can you get more slanted than this:

Huizar's side piled on its attacks against Martinez, getting significant press by alleging that Martinez had in his younger years flashed a dead cop's badge around town.

Huizar's side did not get any significant press by doing this. Huizar's side got significant press by "leaking" a document in public record: the Complaint Adjudication in the matter--that demonstrated that Martinez had simply possessed a badge. I didn't see a single writer around town suggest that Martinez had flashed a badge around town. And yes, I covered the race far more closely and comprehensively than David Futch and the Weekly did.

Note the date: 9/27/05. Yes, Rudy Martinez was relatively younger in 2005. But I don't think we can reasonably call a man to be in his "younger years" less than six years ago.

Facts don't seem to matter much to the Weekly anymore. Slant is what seems to matter.

Which is why Jill Stewart's water-carrying news team, try as it might, can't move the needle when it comes to local elections. This is one story that's already out, everywhere.

It wasn't political consultants who "stank up LA on March 8." It was--and continues to be--the LA Weekly.

A letter from the GGPNC

Here is a letter we received from the president of the Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council, on which I published an item yesterday.

Dear Mr. [Terrace],

If I am not mistaken, I saw you sitting against the wall on my left last night. Thanks for attending our meeting.

I am writing you because you have misreported the item about the housing project.

The project on Riverside Dr. is a “by right” project that doesn’t need the council’s stamp of approval. However, the developers need community input for their files and they acknowledged that community support could give them a “leg up” in finding financing.

The developers made a presentation to our zoning committee and the committee, in turn, reported to the board that it wanted to send a letter detailing that meeting; going as far as including minutes. They did not feel it was appropriate, however, for the letter from the council to weigh in with an opinion about the project until there was more input from the community and there were more firm details.

The “argument” you refer to wasn’t about the degree of a boost to a developer a letter of support from our NC would give. The two-part discussion was first, whether a letter from us would give the developer a boost at all and second, whether the issue of a boost had any place in our discussion. The answers were, we don’t know and yes, it was a fair question to ask (one member had strongly disagreed on that point). There was no discussion of how the council could assist the developer in getting funding and the implication that the GGPNC was trying to craft a letter that would help fast track a project that you think Councilman LaBonge wants is incorrect.

Finally, to the best of my knowledge, the board had no contact from the Councilman’s office expressing his feelings on the subject. Rene Weitzer did ask the developer to come to the GGPNC’s zoning committee and make a presentation. At our board meeting last night, she explained that she thought it would be a good idea for the community to be made aware of the project and for the developer to hear back from the community. On this point, I would hope that you would agree, the Councilman’s office acted in the best interests of the community by making that recommendation.

In the almost three years I have served on the council, I have never seen us step over ourselves to do anyone’s bidding. As should have been evident last night, we are far from a monolithic, lock step organization. Our volunteers step up to serve the interests of our community as best they can, not to serve the ideology of any of our elected officials.

Again, thanks for attending. I hope to see you again soon.

Ron Ostrow
President, GGPNC

OK. I said that "We were later shocked to hear the NC arguing about the degree to which it might boost a developer's chances with a supportive letter for a project on Riverside Drive." Ostrow is saying that "the developers need community input for their files and they acknowledged that community support could give them a 'leg up' in finding financing." He also says "There was no discussion of how the council could assist the developer in getting funding and the implication that the GGPNC was trying to craft a letter that would help fast track a project that you think Councilman LaBonge wants is incorrect."

So, let me see if I can understand this. The Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council spends half an hour arguing about a letter they've crafted. The letter expresses the Council's support of the project. The developer acknowledges that community input gives them a "leg up." But also, the letter does not help "fast track" a project, because it doesn't help fast-track it through the City's approval process.

I'm still not sure I understand. I'm still not understanding what the purpose of this letter is, if not to boost the project. Is it really just to say, "Hey, you have a project, glad to know it!" Then why was there such an argument about it? I don't think the letter says that.

I can't understand the purpose of such a letter absent helping the project along--if not at the City, then at the bank. And if it's helped at the bank, as a by-right project, doesn't it just breeze through? So isn't the GGPNC helping to fast-track it after all?

My guess is this: the developer needs such a letter to take it to the bank to say, "See? I have community support, there's going to be no foot-dragging here if you make the loan." But I don't know. I can't imagine why a Neighborhood Council is writing a letter in support of a development, and now also saying it is not really helping the project along, unless it is actually trying to help the development along.

But I'll let Mr. Ostrow have the last word on this. To repeat:
Finally, to the best of my knowledge, the board had no contact from the Councilman’s office expressing his feelings on the subject. Rene [sic] Weitzer did ask the developer to come to the GGPNC’s zoning committee and make a presentation. At our board meeting last night, she explained that she thought it would be a good idea for the community to be made aware of the project and for the developer to hear back from the community. On this point, I would hope that you would agree, the Councilman’s office acted in the best interests of the community by making that recommendation.
OK. &c.

James, Perry jump into 2013 Mayor's pool

Timing is everything...

The City may be shuttering swimming pools on Mondays this summer, but that didn't deter Councilwoman Jan Perry from jumping into the 2013 Mayoral pool this morning, along with talk radio host and AIDS Project LA vet Kevin James.

The present Mayor's office did everything it could to detract from the announcements, scheduling a hasty visit to an old switching station turned high school for the Mayor while the LAUSD extended its media availability from yesterday's Public Choice Initiative awards into this morning.

Perry touted her experience in bringing the City to record deficit numbers while James presented himself to an audience that included both DA Steve Cooley and jurisprudence antagonist David Berger, as well as Ron Kaye, David Hernandez, and "friends and important people from my past and present."

Sporting a basic baby-blue two-ply Oxford shirt and a very conservative navy-and-maroon repp tie, James's Clintonian declaration of candidacy echoed some of the late-night-into-the-wee-hours positioning that has made him one of the City's top assemblage artists of the fragments of discontent spread throughout insomniac Los Angeles. It's James's ability to dress down even while dressing up, affably standing alongside the public rather than cordoned off behind velvet ropes, and his folksy, Huell Howser-like persona, mixing it up with neighbor groups, that may give biological blueblood Austin Beutner fits should Beutner decide to run. We spotted James indulging all media, including Weekly scribe Gene Maddeus quite a bit--Beutner won't even talk to the Weekly, and it's hard to imagine the multimillionaire at a Rotary Club meeting.

James shares a lot with Howser, as a matter of fact, and I suppose we'll see how so in upcoming days as he continues to attempt to distinguish himself as a different kind of candidate.

LA Downtown News's Jon Regardie asked James how he intended to raise enough money to be competitive and James declared that he had "lower hundreds of thousands" pledged and was targeting the lofty figure of $3 million. The City Maven Alice Walton thought the James event was important enough that she opted to cover it herself, not even entrusting one of her half-dozen interns to the job.

Another Terrace Morning

"We call the City Attorney's office 'the black hole of Calcutta,'" CD 4 planning majordomo Renee Weitzer told the Greater Griffith Park Neighborhood Council last night in a planning briefing on several local projects. Weitzer apparently wants no skids on development whatsoever. This is quite a reversal from her early days as a civic activist opposed to Jack Kent Cooke bringing his Forum to Encino back in LA's smog age.

We were later shocked to hear the NC arguing about the degree to which it might boost a developer's chances with a supportive letter for a project on Riverside Drive. This is what the people of Council District 4 have chosen to represent them for four years: a Councilman who wants to fast-track more rentals while his Neighborhood Councils step over themselves to do his bidding.

Like Gail Goldberg, Weitzer entered planning in midlife looking for something to do. The lifelong community activist, a one-time NIMBY who was involved with the fight to keep the Forum out of the Valley, originally became John Ferraro's planning deputy in yet another era.

The key planning issue of the Villaraigosa mayoralty has been and remains the city's absymal owner-occupied to renter ratio, presently standing at 60-38 with two percent unoccupied. The ratio is a recipe for civic erosion--it creates an artificial "missing rung" on the City's housing ladder, in which renters paying premium rents can't enter starter homes, because there aren't any. If you wonder why the City is becoming a town of absentee landlords, projects like the 49-unit cliff-dwelling pueblo coming to Riverside Drive, which the "neighbors" who formerly had NIMBYist inclinations are now sitting up straight and expressing their loving fealty in support of such projects, are expressive of why.

Speaking of absentee landlords: LA Live took out a big St. Patrick's Day ad on Tom LaBonge's website. In case you were wondering about who owns who.

Today the City's august Mayor appears at another absentee landlord site: he'll be at Richard Meruelo's Taylor Yards, cutting a ribbon on yet another school. While he's away from City Hall, Kevin James will be mounting the south steps of City Hall to roll out his vision for what LA should be in 2013 and beyond.

One thing James's candidacy will do is make the ultra-rich right come to more meetings like last night's Neighborhood Council fiasco on Hillhurst, something Austin Beutner doesn't like doing and is nearly unimaginable for Rick Caruso's gauntlet-entourage.

The LAUSD School Board yesterday, largely sponsored by the Mayor at this point, awarded more charter schools than Ramon Cortines had recommended.

Tech Culture is about "everything" - and so are other media cultures

I sort of buy this:
This, for outsiders, is the fundamental obstacle to understanding where technology culture is heading: increasingly, it's about everything. The vaguely intimidating twentysomethings who prowl the corridors of the Austin Convention Centre, juggling coffee cups, iPad 2s and the festival's 330-page schedule of events, are no longer content with transforming that part of your life you spend at your computer, or even on your smartphone. This is not just grandiosity on their part. Rather – and this is a technological point, but also a philosophical one – they herald the final disappearance of the boundary between "life online" and "real life", between the physical and the virtual.
But imagine if there were a SXSW during television's infancy, the 1950s. It would have seemed that television too was initially about news and entertainment, but eventually it became about everything.

Manuel Jamines inquiry complete--Zac Champommier inquiry barely undeway

Open and shut cases.

In one of the most stunning failures of local media thus far in this twenty-first century, the whole cause celebre of the shooting of drunken Guatemalan day laborer Manuel Jamines last September has tightly wrapped up its inquiry before the public has even learned the name of the law enforcement officers involved in the killing of honor student Zac Champommier late last June.

The disgrace of the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Daily News and LA Weekly in failing to put adequate pressure on the Sheriff's Department to release details or even the names of the Sheriffs and DEA agents involved in the killing of honor student Champommier, even while the entirety of the Jamines inquiry has been conducted, only compounds as journalists chase various noisemakers and continue to ignore the story of Zac.

UPDATE: The site Justice for Zac publishes the names of law enforcement involved in the killing, and adds, "As it stands now, Zac's family has yet to see a single report from either the Sheriff's department or from the District Attorney's Office."

EARLIER: Carol Champommier RIFed, In Memoriam Zac Champommier, Kids Disclose Name of Man Deputies Shot and Killed, More Questions in Killing of Recent Granada High Grad

Kevin James announces candidacy for Mayor tomorrow

Pasty, white, and ready to go.

Prominent members of the media and elected officials are invited tomorrow to City Hall South lawn to watch radio personality Kevin James announce his candidacy for Mayor of Los Angeles.

James's previous government experience is as an Assistant US Attorney. A conservative with a Randian libertarian streak, James also served as co-chairman of AIDS Project Los Angeles.

Campaign consultant John Thomas, who recently handled the first half of the surging Tomas O'Grady campaign, and also drew on John Shallman's experience while working for Carmen Trutanich's successful campaign, will start off at the reins of the James campaign. The timing is opportune for James for two reasons: 1) it gives James the potential to raise a little money before other conservatives move in, and 2) it gives James a chance to distinguish himself among LA's frenetically disorganized libertarians, whose reliance on their friends at the politically weakened LA Weekly and inability to organize meaningfully cost Ron Kaye's Clean Sweep movement so dearly in the past election. James appears to be distancing himself from Clean Sweep in his announcement, as he was one of those on board at the Mayflower Club last July, but his press bulletin doesn't announce the beleaguered movement's participation in the event.