The street furniture deal is one of the scandals that goes back a few years when they let a greedy private company assault our eyes with commercial messages — Consume! Consume! Consume! — at the ground level.
Since then we’ve seen how our city leaders have sold us out to giant flashing billboards and 15-story-high hangings that have only one purpose: Sell! Sell! Sell!
They thrive off of the pennies on the ground from the profiteers in hyper-consumerism and yet they dare call themselves environmentalists.
They are our leaders, sworn to serve us, yet they are the betrayers of all that is good for us.
They tried to get a blank check for billions of dollars in the name of solar energy and yet the people saw through their lies and refused to give them what they wanted in Measure B.
They don’t care. They are going right ahead and prepared to spend as much as it costs — $10 billion or more — and stick us with the bill.
“Successful,” it declares for all eyes to see, “Thanks, Mr Mayor For Fighting Against Dirty Energy. Coal gone by 2020. Successful.”
For a man whose whole life is filled with a trail of tears over all his broken promises to be declared “successful” for promising to get rid of LA’s putrid reliance on coal-powering power plants is laughable.
One can only ask who would have the shameless audacity to put up such a sign.
The answer is something called REAP. No, not the program the city uses to punish small landlords while bearing direct responsibility through its own Housing Authority for the worst slum conditions that demean and demoralize the neediest among us.
This is the Renewable Energy Accountability Project, chair and principal Jim Gonzalez who led the campaign last November for Prop. 7 the Solar and Clean Energy Act rejected by nearly two-thirds of Californians.
Its website lists none other than S. David Freeman as Principal Emeritus. Yes, the same David Freeman who once headed the DWP when it squandered millions of dollars promoting solar energy but failed to deliver any. Yes, the same David Freeman who is now Villaraigosa’s deputy mayor for the environment, LA’s Environmental Czar.
Quite a trick having your environmental czar able to get signs put up around town on a lot of that street furniture hailing your hollow clean energy promise — a political slogan that has no cost estimates or plan associated with it — and already declare you a success 11 years before anything has been done.
All we know is that the DWP, under the leadership of the mayor’s dutiful servant David Nahai, is overpaying for as much as 30 percent to mask its long-term failure to go green and is prepared to spend whatever you’ll pay to try to catch up with all the cities in California that are so far ahead in the clean energy transition.
This is about Money! Money! Money!
It’s about who gets it and who will pay the clique of politicians, consultants, contractors, lobbyists, unions and hangers-on who will profit.
The campaign is under way and, at this point, we can only wonder who supplied the money to REAP to pay for these street furniture signs declaring the mayor so successful in delivering on his clean energy promise.
Or did they even have to pay at all.