Wed07012015

Last updateMon, 29 Jun 2015 7pm

LOS ANGELES Wednesday, July 1st 2015 4:11

 IT'S ABOUT R.E.S.P.E.C.T.

Using The N-Word

Clinton Galloway
WHO WE ARE-Somehow it has become acceptable to use racial slurs as long as they are directed at yourself. The fact is they are rarely directed at you but to someone else. The most glaring example of this is the use of the N-word. I need say no more because we all understand what the N-word is. The extensive use of the word in modern hip-hop and…

‘LA Is Not Designed To Work’

Jack Humphreville
LA WATCHDOG-The City of Los Angeles is a sprawling enterprise with 32,000 employees and an annual budget of $8.6 billion. But according to Rick Cole, the City’s former Deputy Mayor for Budget and Innovation, “LA is not designed to work." Our City’s operations are relatively simple compared to Los Angeles County and other large cities such as New…

SCOTUS Supports the People, Okays California’s Citizen-Driven Redistricting Commission

Deirdre Fulton
NO MORE SECRET BACKROOMS RUN BY POLITICIANS-In a decision hailed as a "major victory for voters," the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday upheld an Arizona ballot initiative, adopted by voters in 2000, which took redistricting power away from elected politicians and gave it to a nonpartisan commission. The 5-4 decision (pdf), which saw Justice Anthony…

To Latinos Trump Is Bad News

Fred Mariscal
LATINO PERSPECTIVE-This past week businessman Donald Trump announced that he will seek the 2016 Republican nomination for President. We all paid attention to his speech, not for great policy ideas but because he said that “When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending the best. They're not sending you, they're sending people that have lots of…

Supreme Court Aftermath: Meet the New Haters, As Repugnant as the Old Haters

Ken Alpern
HATE POLITICS-The Supreme Court has spoken...again and again and again. And now we're encountering a group of New Haters, as repugnant as the Old Haters, as we discover who is REALLY on the side of Love, Country and Humanity versus that once-marginalized group of emotionally- and intellectually-stunted individuals who now somehow think they're not…

About Time! Neighborhood Councils, NC Alliances: More Comment Time at City Council

Erik Sanjurjo
GUEST WORDS-On Saturday, Council President Herb Wesson gave the keynote speech before the 100+ Neighborhood Council board members and stakeholders gathered for NC Budget Day in City Hall. He announced that in the next Council term he will be folding in neighborhood council related issues under his Rules & Elections Committee, partly to help…

Councilman Parks Sidewalk Repair Plan: Bypass Union Workers

Sharon McNary
CITY HALL-The city of Los Angeles has fallen so far behind on sidewalk repairs, it took a lawsuit to get officials to guarantee more than a billion dollars for repairs. It could take years before the work reaches residential areas because the city must still come up with a strategy for which sidewalks to fix first. But some neighborhoods are…

I Never Believed This Would Happen In My Lifetime

Andrew Sullivan
GUEST WORDS-As Gandhi never quite said … First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they attack you. Then you win. I remember one of the first TV debates I had on the then-strange question of civil marriage for gay couples. It was Crossfire, as I recall, and Gary Bauer’s response to my rather earnest argument after my TNR cover-story on…

Changing the Way We See Ourselves: Every American Should Adopt a Second Country

Andrés Martinez
TRADE WINDS-About 10 minutes into the soccer game, Sebastian’s cries of “here,” “behind you,” and “cross it” became cries of “aquí,” “atrás,” and “al centro.” I’d never heard so much Spanish voluntarily pour out of my ten-year-old. There is nothing like a hunger for the ball. And nothing like full immersion in a foreign language. I brought…

 



Thu Jul 30, 2015 @ 6:00PM - 08:00PM
A Taste of Chatsworth


Golden Oldie-Johnnie Carson & Betty White-Adam and Eve

Rude. Rude. Rude … orchestra deals with rude cell caller

Whoa! More than 280 million hits. Taylor Swift hit-Bad Blood

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

A State of the City, Scribbled from Elsewhere

MAILANDER MUSINGS - The Mayor's State of the City addresses have become odder and odder events over the years.  Occasionally, precious snippets appear on television, to the delight of the Mayor's communication team and few others.  

Occasionally, the city's online crowd raises questions about what is actually said in them.  But nobody in local media seems very interested to fact-check them--I suppose because they are anxious to be invited back to the next space oddity.  
Nor does the Mayor suffer much criticism from his dependable lackeys on City Council, who are only anxious not to alienate any potential voting block the Mayor has not yet alienated himself.

But the Mayor's most recent State of the City address, given in a theater at Paramount studios on Wednesday--in which Federally-propelled transportation was seen as a cure-all for economic recovery, and the triumph of hope over experience was never made more manifest--was certainly the oddest and most error-riddled one yet--and the most indicative yet of the Mayor's near complete disdain for people who actually happen to live in the city he happens to govern.

Just by way of glaring example: the Mayor's office in this speech made a claim that the City's Clean Truck program has "pumped a billion dollars into the economy."  What economy? Certainly not the City's!  

This statement is a many-sided fiction that has nothing to do with the actual state of the city.  That billion isn't local money, of course, nor are the trucks locally built, nor do even a fifth of the trucks permitted day passes at the Port of Los Angeles come from Los Angeles shipping companies; and by now, most of the pre-1989 trucks that the program originally targeted would have been retired anyway.

The Mayor's crack team of out-of-town analysts even blew a reference to the commemoration of the 1992 riot: the Mayor said it extended over "those six days in April"--but the riot began April 29, and extended nearly until Cinco de Mayo.  I don't suppose the people who weren't here in 1992 would recall as much.

And whomever writes the Mayor's speeches even got author Anne Lamott's name wrong on the press copy, rendering her last name "Lamont."

Not only that, but the fact that the Mayor of Los Angeles couldn't find an Angeleno author to cop a quote regarding hopefulness doesn't speak well for our city, as hopefulness is not in superabundance here.  And certainly, the fact that the Mayor's speechwriter chose a lifelong San Franciscan for the speech's money quote, rather than an Angeleno does surprise me for all its Carson-esque audacity.

But beyond the botched jots and glich-riddled tittles, perhaps there was no more slippery slope within the Mayor's speech than the healthy segment devoted to LAUSD schools.  The Mayor cited many statistics—spoon-fed to him by the LAUSD itself--that demonstrated that the LAUSD is measurably improving.

Most of these statistics were based on Academic Performance Index scores--scores based on standardized testing: he told his captive audience at Paramount that API scores are up over 50 points in Partnership schools, a five-fold increase in charter schools achieving an API ranking of 800 or better, reduction of poor performing API schools, etc.

But these API rankings receive all the criticism that standardized test rankings do, and they only began to incorporate dropout rates last year.  The District has in fact has recently made wild contortions to check the stratospheric dropout rate, only this week proposing to reduce the number of courses needed for graduation.

When the Mayor began rambling about transportation, he made heads spin, even in his captive audience.  "What does this all mean? It means Angelenos will have more transit options. It means that Angelenos will spend less time in their cars and more time doing the things that matter: Playing with their kids. Talking with their neighbors. Enjoying a day at the beach."  I am told that the people in the audience who had an hour-plus trek from the Westside to 5555 Melrose allowed their jaws to gape accordingly.

A community leader who resides at least fifteen miles from the nearest Metro stop told me, "transpo and getting folks out of their cars is a distraction.  Geographically it’s too difficult and the City likes to help the car dealerships -- actually, most cities do."   Which is true on the whole, and caused me to wonder if the Mayor and I even live in the same city at all--obviously, his speechwriters don't.

On Council, Budget and Finance Chair Paul Krekorian, ever hopeful to move somewhere else up the ladder, released a tepid statement on the Mayor's address: “I applaud the Mayor’s vision and his continuing efforts to ramp up transportation projects and to create jobs," it began.  Then, seemingly anticipating strife, Krekorian added "“The Mayor gave only brief mention of his anticipated budget proposal tonight, but when he releases it on Friday, I will work with him in earnest to produce a balanced budget that reflects the values of our city and the priorities of its residents."

At one point, when looking for someone in local politics who might dare to say something more courageous than Krekorian could muster, I asked someone close to the Mayor if anybody who has ever even lived in LA before 2005 could have possibly contributed to this speech.

He just laughed--nervously.

Yes, now, LA has become such an absentee-landlord town that even the Mayor's top speech of the year is gamed by an out-of-town clique.  Which should surprise nobody who has been following the arc of local politics through the lost Villaraigosa years.

(Joseph Mailander is a writer, an LA observer and a contributor to CityWatch. He is also the author of The Plasma of Terror. Mailander blogs at street-hassle.blogspot.com.)
-cw

Tags: Joseph Mailander, Mailander Musings, State of the City, Mayor’s speech, LAUSD, LA Port, Port of Los Angeles








CityWatch
Vol 10 Issue 32
Pub: Apr 20, 2012

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