U.S. Attorney resigns: Her move to Gibson, Dunn was announced this morning. See post below.
Port problems: The law of unintended consequences could be at play in a new federal law that requires workers in and around ports to be legal residents and pass a background check. Here's the problem: A large proportion of the truckers picking up and dropping off loads are Hispanic. Many of them are illegal immigrants. If they can't get in, port traffic is likely to be impacted. From the WSJ:
The drivers form a critical link between global suppliers to retailers throughout the U.S. Nationwide, they haul everything from spare auto parts and life-saving medical devices to toys and T-shirts from harbors to distribution points 50 or 100 miles away. Working as independent contractors, they are paid a flat per-trip fee -- typically $40 to $100, depending on the distance between port and warehouse, and averaging about $55. Most drive aged trucks -- known as bobtails -- to which they attach trailer rigs. They normally take out loans to buy the trucks, paying them off in monthly installments. The drivers are paid by trucking firms retained by freight forwarders, steamship lines and importers.
Viacom in China: The media giant has cut a deal to provide television and music video content to Baidu, one of the world's most trafficked web sites. Given Chairman Sumner Redstone's frustration at losing MySpace to Rupert Murdoch, there might be some pressure integrate its traditional media offerings into online formats. The Baidu deal might or might not have anything to do with that, but there's no argument that it's been a hassle getting American-made entertainment seen in China.
Disney's "healthy" fare: Nifty story by Bloomberg News about the not-so-healthy fare at Disney theme parks. A Bloomberg-hired lab found that Disney's Magic Kingdom near Orlando serves food with more fat, salt and calories than McDonald's Corp., with a smoked turkey leg weighing in at 1,092.5 calories. This is the same company that announced new guidelines for kids meals and plans for the elimination of added trans fats from its park food by the end of 2007.
One reason some Disney food is fattier than McDonald's is serving sizes are bigger. A Disney cheeseburger weighs 36 grams more and is 32 percent larger than one at McDonald's, packing 360.6 calories compared with 297.2 calories. It also contains almost twice as much fat, the analysis shows. Disney burgers do contain less sodium. A 100-gram portion of Disney chicken nuggets contains 357 calories, 23.6 grams of fat, and 619 milligrams of sodium. The same amount of McNuggets contains 316 calories, 21 grams of fat and 567 milligrams of sodium. The turkey leg, which Disney parks and resorts spokeswoman Lisa Haines said on Aug. 29 is ``part of the theme'' of the Magic Kingdom's Frontierland, contains 14.7 grams of saturated fat and 5,283.5 milligrams of sodium.
Are we surprised?: More Americans (mostly men) are leaving for work between 5 a.m. and 6:30 a.m., according to new Census numbers. Commuting times are also up. It's worth noting that in past surveys L.A. commute times are somehow not the longest in the nation (might have something to do with the use of public transit adding to the commute).
Splichal takes over: It always seemed like a strange combo - super-chef Joachim Splichal of Patina fame selling out to a food service company that sells hot dogs to Staples Center and Dodger Stadium. Well, Splichal and a business partner are buying back his Patina Group from Restaurant Associates for $90 million.
Workers comp scorecard: Two years after the state's workers' compensation program was overhauled, the LAT finds that costs paid by employers have been cut in half - just don't get hurt on the job. Under the new law, services and disability payments for many injured workers were cut, and there's a growing belief that the changes went too far.
More Targets: The Minneapolis-based retailer has opened new stores in Diamond Bar, Lake Elsinore, Canoga Park and Hayward - part of 59 new store openings nationwide.
Lacter on KPCC: This morning's chat with Steve Julian (6:55 and 9:55) covers the Ralphs plea bargain, a drop in L.A. County bankruptcy filings and the aforementioned Disney move to healthier fare.