LA Observed Notes: Streep, Globes, media moves and politics

lalaland-fwy.jpg"La La Land" and both lead actors received a record seven awards at the Golden Globes on Sunday night. "Moonlight" won for best movie drama. Winners

Our occasional roundup on media, politics and place from a variety of sources. Have a tip? Share!

At the top

meryl-streep-golden-globes.jpgIn his face: Meryl Streep never mentioned Donald Trump by name but used her time at the Golden Globes microphone to call on Americans to value Hollywood, foreigners and especially the press — she specifically called for support of the Committee to Protect Journalists. (Transcript.) "Thank you Meryl Streep," CPJ tweeted... Streep, who spoke for Hillary Clinton at the Democratic convention last year, also said the mocking of disabled New York Times reporter Serge F. Kovaleski [by Trump] "kind of broke my heart when I saw it, and I still can’t get it out of my head." Trump, reached by the NYT for a reaction, dismissed Streep as "a Hillary lover” and denied, again, that he was mocking Kovaleski's illness.

Big weekend package in LA Times: Has Hollywood lost touch with America? Times critics and writers "consider where Hollywood stands on issues of class, race, diversity and gender, particularly under a president who is openly hostile to 'political correctness.'”

He said, he said: Los Angeles Magazine writer Ed Leibowitz responded on the web to the LA Times' criticism of his piece in the January issue calling out LAT editor-publisher Davan Maharaj as a major problem. Leibowitz says he has heard from Times staffers grateful for his reporting, and says of the criticism by managing editor Larry Ingrassia: "Many unsubstantiated allegations while attacking my integrity and the credibility of the piece. Notably, though, he does not contest any specific anecdote, assertion, or fact included in my account of the Times’ mishandling of a multipart investigative series on the prescription opiate OxyContin, nor, more generally, of the conduct of his boss Maharaj."... Meanwhile, the Guardian's media blogger, Roy Greenslade, wraps up three weeks in LA with a piece on the controversy and asking why did the Los Angeles Times take so long to run an investigation?

Foodie inside baseball: Pete Wells of the New York Times dares to cross the state line and review the food at Oakland's branch of Locol as not that good. Los Angeles Magazine food editor Lesley Bargar Suter, who just invested a year and a half in a story on the original Locol in Watts, complains that the review is completely accurate but should not have been written because Locol is about something other than food. Op-ed contributor Michael Krikorian writes in the LA Times that he would give Wells the "opportunity to meet several Grape Street Crips" in the parking lot at Jordan Downs. Locol co-founder Roy Choi says the review was "like yelling ‘booooo’ at an elementary school musical.” Jonathan Gold, who has the Watts original of Locol at #58 on his top 101 LA area restaurants but hasn't reviewed it, acknowledges "the food is less an experiment in culinary creativity than it is an attempt to fashion sustainable, lower-fat, affordable versions of dishes already popular in the area it serves: burgers, pizza, chili and salad.' Gold also wonders "are certain restaurants unreviewable?"

big-sequoia.jpgStorm damage: The historic Pioneer Cabin Tree, a giant sequoia in Calaveras County hollowed out in the 1880s to allow people to walk through — and later cars to drive through — fell over the weekend and shattered into pieces on impact. The redwood was in Calaveras Big Trees State Park.

Formosa Cafe maybe not dead: The owner of the West Hollywood property that has been Formosa Cafe is looking for a new proprietor to recapture the old magic. Yah well. Until then, the Formosa closed last week.


Media notes

express_cover.jpgThe term fake news has already been co-opted for ideological reasons and should be retired, WaPo's Margaret Sullivan argues in her Monday column... Very big oops on the cover of the Washington Post Express. "We’re very embarrassed," the free tabloid said. They had a 50-50 chance of being right... Trump met off the record on Friday with the editors of Conde Nast publications: David Remnick of The New Yorker, Graydon Carter of Vanity Fair and Anna Wintour of Vogue. It was Wintour's invitation and he traveled to them... Remnick's latest Trump critique in TNY quotes Russia expert Strobe Talbott saying the Russian hack of the election on behalf of Trump was "so spectacularly successful" as a tweak on America the Kremlin is overjoyed: "this was like winning seventeen jackpots all at once.”... Facebook hired former NBC White House correspondent Campbell Brown in a new position to lead to its news partnerships team. Brown recently has been involved with education reform. NYT... For the first time since the Beatles played Ed Sullivan, Boston doesn’t have a newspaper staffer dedicated to the pop music beat. And other bad times for arts critics... Science journalism is under attack too: "Be careful what you write, especially if you uncover evidence of science distortion that upsets activists."... NBC didn't live stream the Golden Globes. The "live" web coverage it touted was just a Twitter feed... Choreographer Mandy Moore (not the actress) calls her "La La Land" experience "the Super Bowl of my career." The opening dance number shot on the connector from the 105 freeway to the 110 in South Los Angeles involved 60 cars, a 12-hour closure for rehearsal and two days of shooting on the freeway... If you have seen any stories about a millennial named Dan Nainan who left Intel to make millions as a comedian, know he's a fraud. Good read.

Obituaries: Nat Hentoff, the jazz critic who became a First Amendment defender in the Village Voice, the New Yorker and other outlets, died at age 91. Lynell George in the LA Times, NYT... Jonathan Sanchez, associate publisher and CEO of Eastern Group Publications on the east side of Los Angeles County, died of cancer at age 64. EGP, LAT.

broderick-320.jpgThis time it's real: San Diego murderer Elisabeth “Betty” Broderick was denied parole last week, as you may have seen in the news. No she really was, but you are excused for wondering if it actually happened. Remember, the LA Times ran a story last August saying Broderick was newly denied parole — but it was actually a 2010 story that mysteriously got into the paper and on its website six years later.


Media people doing stuff

Snopes managing editor Brooke Binkowski was added as keynote speaker at SPJ-LA's Jan. 26 Distinguished Journalist Awards banquet at the Omni Hotel... On Monday, Joe Saltzman returns to the USC Annenberg campus to teach for the first time in eight months after health issues and a sabbatical leave. It's his 49th year on the journalism faculty, he posts on Facebook... Diane Haithman, ex-LA Times and Deadline, has joined the Los Angeles Business Journal as a reporter on the entertainment beat... Carly Schaffner is the new managing editor for, a news site created last year by the former CEO of and Jerry Hirsch, the former long-time Los Angeles Times business reporter. Several ex-LAT business writers contribute... LA writer Carina Chocano in the Zocalo green room: Where do you get your news? "New York Times, Washington Post, and Facebook."... Historian and author Mike Davis in conversation with Jennifer Wolch and Dana Cuff at Boom... Tim Rutten blog post: "If you’re still curious about just how sick the American body politic has become, there’s nowhere more informative than that spot on the Internet where fake news intersects with the right-wing’s paranoia over all things Californian."... CNN Money's Brian Stelter put together an oral history of election night media coverage with input from more than 20 journalists... KCRW's Saul Gonzalez goes for a ride in the Goodyear blimp... Former LAT reporter Janet Hook takes on a new beat at the Wall Street Journal, covering national politics with an emphasis on the Democratic Party.


News and notes

Rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Wiesenthal Center explains why he accepted an invitation to deliver a benediction at the Trump inauguration... Grass roots Southern California Trumpists met Saturday in Long Beach to plan their next steps... Valley College paid a $28,000 ransom to get control of its student records back from hackers. DN... Harold Meyerson argues that "year in, year out, Los Angeles remains the nation’s capital of crummy jobs, at least when compared to other major metropolitan areas." LAT Opinion... The rate of homicide, robbery and property crime is rising faster in the San Fernando Valley than in the city as a whole, based on LAPD stats. DN... Police officers and sheriff's deputies in Los Angeles County were involved in 89 shootings last year. KPCC... The funeral for LAPD officer Heather Monroe, who died last week in an off-duty traffic crash in Simi Valley, will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday at Forest Lawn-Hollywood Hills.


Some politics is local

Vice President Joe Biden did a Beverly Hills fundraiser Sunday for Mayor Eric Garcetti's reelection campaign... Garcetti is "pushing an ambitious agenda that includes courting the 2024 Olympic Games, curbing air pollution, fighting homelessness, massively expanding its light rail system, reinventing the city’s overcrowded airport and integrating technology into city planning." An interview in Governing magazine... One of Garcetti's challengers, Mitchell Schwartz, called on the mayor to pledge to serve at least one full year before running for another office if reelected. "Political stunt," says Garcetti consultant Bill Carrick... Schwartz makes the point that the next mayoral term will run 5½ years instead of the usual four because of LA's decision to shift its elections to the bottom of the crowded statewide ballot... The Target Book continues without the late Allan Hoffenblum, who died in 2015, in part because of research director Rob Pyers, a 41-year-old Libertarian who works from a one-bedroom apartment in West Hollywood and who has made a name for himself among California politicos and journalists... San Diego's Republican mayor, Kevin Faulconer, has quietly started discussing a potential run for governor with advisers and prospective donors. That's from Politico, citing former mayor Richard Riordan... Former Hilda Solis chief of staff and LA planning commissioner Maria Cabildo has become the 12th candidate to declare in the 34th congressional district derby to succeed Xavier Becerra... At age 84, the former Rams great Rosey Grier says he is running for governor... Bud Ovrom is stepping down as executive director of the LA Convention Center. He'll be around until March 26.

OC Stories: "Using taxpayer funds, government officials in Orange County have spent the last 16 years arguing the most absurd legal proposition in the entire nation: How could social workers have known it was wrong to lie, falsify records and hide exculpatory evidence in 2000 so that a judge would forcibly take two young daughters from their mother for six-and-a-half years?" OC Weekly



Downtown Los Angeles is undergoing its largest construction boom in modern times — an explosion juiced by foreign investment that’s adding thousands of residences, construction jobs and a multitude of shops and restaurants. LA Times

Bay Area baking giant Tartine has plans to take over an entire building in The Row DTLA , the former produce market where Smorgasburg is held on Sundays. There will be a massive baking operation, restaurant, coffee and more. Lesley Bargar Suter in Los Angeles Magazine.

An aerial video tour of the Los Angeles River. Arch Daily

Can Preservationists Save L.A.'s Late Modernist Landmarks From the Wrecking Ball? LA Weekly

Beverly Hills Finally Loses Its Crazy, Stupid Subway Battle. Neal Broverman in Los Angeles Magazine


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