Morning Buzz

Morning Buzz: Monday 12.4.06

Acting fire chief
Douglas L. Barry has been with the department 31 years and is African American. Mayor Villaraigosa will introduce him this morning at Fire Station #66 at 1909 W. Slauson Avenue. LAT, DN
Rubber bullets used on UCLA students
Police decided to disperse revelers early Sunday morning after couch and trash can fires were set in the North Village. LAT, Daily Bruin
Best Chinese food in Southern California?
Sunday's New York Times Travel section anointed five (four in the San Gabriel Valley and Foo Chow in Chinatown) but the writer is prone to hyperbole. As in this bit about Interstate 10: "And for its first 50 miles or so, from Los Angeles to San Bernardino, it is a modern-day Chinatown, a string of multiethnic communities that all have a large, dynamic Chinese population." Chuckling...
News of our contributors: Veronique de Turenne reviewed the debut short-story collection My Chaos Theory in yesterday's Los Angeles Times. Erika Schickel had a piece on Walt Disney in the LAT special section on local culture milestones. Also, Mark Lacter is traveling this week and will be posting only occasionally to LA Biz Observed. LA Observed Bio page
AFTER THE JUMP: Antonio vs. Rocky, John Stodder v. Harold Meyerson, Monday columns, Skid Row gets a book store — plus items mentioning Brad Sherman, Warren Christopher, Dennis Prager, Tony Pierce and others.
The Antonio-Rocky relationship
The mayor's people think Delgadillo is "a dunderhead with no touch for politics," while the city attorney's loyalists think of Villaraigosa as "an egocentric opportunist." The Times' Jim Newton and Patrick McGreevy go to the public record and find that in eight months Villaraigosa had 14 meetings and two dinners with City Council President Eric Garcetti, met 19 times with Police Chief William Bratton and sat down with Controller Laura Chick six times. Total number of meetings between Villaraigosa and the City Attorney: zilch — "though the two did meet for dinner at the restaurant A.O.C. on Nov. 12, where they were spotted in serious, even grim, conversation."
Monday columns
Steve Hymon in the LAT dissects the two hours that the City Council spent honoring the departing Alex Padilla on Friday while the public waited for the vote on Tennie Pierce. Rick Orlov in the Daily News notes that Delgadillo is the latest City Hall official to try Spanish-language immersion (in Mexico City), has an item on the EAA-vs-SEIU rivalry, and follows our item from last week on Sean Clegg taking over for Cecile Ablack as the mayor's head of communications.
Competing visions
Former City Hall hand John Stodder calls Harold Meyerson's Los Angeles Magazine version of local political history "pathetic" and factually wrong, arguing his case in a blog post that runs to 1,700 words. Sample:
Meyerson has to tweak history to make it fit his mythology. His tale includes, but minimizes and misinterprets the 20-year mayoralty of Tom Bradley, attributing his rise solely to a coalition of Jews, African-Americans and liberals. As I understand the history, those factions got Bradley into a runoff in 1969, where he was defeated by a racist reactionary assault by incumbent Mayor Sam Yorty. It took additional help from labor and some of the business community to get Bradley elected in 1973.

Labor played an enormous role throughout Bradley’s reign — as strong or stronger than it does today. Bradley’s mightiest achievement, the rebuilding of downtown, came about because of labor leaders like Bill Robertson and Jim Wood, who saw the potential for thousands of good jobs in the construction of office towers and, later, the Metro Rail.

Sherman-Kaplan nuptials
Rep. Brad Sherman's marriage set for yesterday was covered in the New York Times.
They will always have Paris
Couple of L.A. journo-bloggers party the night away with the Times' acting Paris blogger.
Early look at WSJ redesign
Kit Seelye of the New York Times has a go at it.
People are surprised that Dennis Prager mangles history?
Good range of comments at Professor Bainbridge's Journal on the "moral" talk show wingnut who argues a Muslim congressman should swear on a Bible.
Wikipedia versus Tony Pierce
Some contributors don't think that Pierce's blogging record merits his inclusion in the online encyclopedia, but he and others insist that he does. David Markland observes it for Metroblogging L.A.
Skid Row gets a bookstore
Metropolis Books opens in the Old Bank District at 440 South Main Street. Downtown News
Downtown condo market chilling
Though 1100 Wilshire is about ready, ten to fifteen condo developments have been shelved or scaled back, and investors who bought to flip are having to rent units instead. LA Business Journal
Surprise: when immigrants arrive, crime drops
A NYT Magazine story looks at evidence in San Diego, Miami, Chicago and New York.
Center for Law in the Public Interest closes after 35 years
It will morph into The City Project. Evan George has the interesting history in the Downtown News:
In 1971, Carlyle Hall, Brent Rushforth, John Phillips and Ric Sutherland left prominent law firm O'Melveny & Myers to start CLIPI with support from the Ford Foundation and individual donors such as future Mayor Richard Riordan and Warren Christopher, who would become President Clinton's Secretary of State. The goal: to sue for social change.

In one of its first cases, the Center won a monumental decision from the state Supreme Court that required environmental impact reports for private as well as public projects. In 1978, CLIPI sued the city of Los Angeles for hiring an unskilled, unlicensed contractor to repair the Watts Towers. The Center helped restore the landmark to strict preservation standards.

CLIPI also helped protect acres of threatened wetlands and won victories for communities displaced by freeway construction - all through litigation, making it a model that public interest firms across the country followed.

But in the last 10 years, the Center's successes, especially concerning urban parks in Los Angeles, came without lawsuits, and the board of career litigators found themselves overseeing something more akin to coalition building.

Rose Bowl snafus
A UCLA fan emails that things did not go smoothly in Pasadena on Saturday.
The Rose Bowl ticket takers seemed to be caught unawares be the crush of people trying to get in and there were huge backups trying to get into the Rose Bowl. I missed about 20 minutes of the game. Tempers were short among people waiting to get in. I haven't been able to figure out what the problem was as I've been to many sold out events at the Rose Bowl and never encountered that problem before. The security guys had even stopped checking bags.

If the situation is repeated on January 1, the USC fans will be very ticked off and rightfully so. They shouldn't have to put up with that sort of mismanagement twice.

More by Kevin Roderick:
Standing up to Harvey Weinstein
The Media
LA Times gets a top editor with nothing but questions
LA Observed Notes: Harvey Weinstein stripped bare
LA Observed Notes: Photos of the homeless, photos that found homes
Recent Morning Buzz stories on LA Observed:
Thursday news and notes
A little bit of mid-week reading
A few links from a few different places
Let's talk about anything but the weather
A few links from here and there
A couple of links from a couple of places
A bit of news from a few places
Morning Buzz: Wednesday 4.16.14


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