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Antonio’s Mystery Malady — Why It All Went So Wrong

Jimmy Hahn was no glad-handing politician. He suffered from a phobic
distaste for anyone actually touching him, which goes a long way to
explaining why his lackluster pay-to-play service as mayor lasted only
one term.
Thumbnail image for antoniostars1.jpeg
Antonio Villaraigosa suffers from a different malady. He is the epitome
of the glad-hander but is totally out of touch with everyone except that
small cadre of money-grubbers and power-mad mediocrities who surround
him and flatter his needy ego endlessly.

Many of those who have known him longer and better than I say he always
lacked the attention to detail and the brain power to get atop the horse
of power and really be a leader.

I don’t believe that from my own experience during occasional rambling late-night
phone conversations or numerous more public engagements.

It’s a mystery to me how he could go so wrong as mayor.

Maybe it’s no more than he loves the limelight and the good life of
wine, women and wealth more than he cared about the work of being mayor,
more than he cared about anything or anyone else.

Yeah, but … that  doesn’t explain to my satisfaction how it has all gone so wrong.

I believed from the bottom of my heart that despite all his flaws, Antonio represented the best hope for LA to discover a new spirit that would bring us together as a city, help us find a  vision that transcended our vast differences in backgrounds and stations, bring to life the myths of unlimited freedom and possibility that are at the heart of my own love of LA.

I was wrong.

The opposite has occurred. We are more divided than ever, more fragmented, more in conflict with each other. We have reached the point of no return on the road to the dark side of the destiny of LA, a city of rich and poor, of spectacular displays of wealth and horrifying conditions of poverty.

LA is a city of light and dark and the dark side is winning.

Under Antonio’s leadership, City Hall has become nothing more than a conduit for dispensing of the public wealth to a variety of special interests without regard to public benefit. It is held together by segmenting the population into narrow interest groups and pandering to them with flattery and favors.

The insider dealing that long greased the skids of City Hall turned into outright corruption under the passivity and aloofness under Hahn. Today, the entire system of government is corrupt with commissioners and department heads reduced to being little more than stooges, brow-beaten and threatened to the point where there are no safeguards for the public interest.

Public policy under Antonio is nothing but a series of slogans about sharing the dream, taking over the failing schools, 30-10 plans to fast-track the subway-to-the-sea, the lockbox for green energy.

We have reached the point where we all know the dream is over, where the schools are not only failing but firing teachers and shortening the school year, where the cost of the subway is gutting the DASH system and raising fares for the poor even as traffic congestion worsens, where there is no plan at all to give us cleaner energy.

Antonio’s failure of leadership in the budget crisis has led to one decision after another that only makes things worse and perpetuates the crisis of reduced services for years, decades probably, to come.
narcissus.jpg
In the space of barely two weeks, he has changes his position and the storyline on green energy and DWP rate hikes five times and still his only support comes from the unions and renewable energy industry that stand to profit and the environmentalists who are so disconnected from the reality of the city’s four million people that you might think they are living in another world than the rest of us.

I have no better answer to why Antonio is floundering so badly and has lost all credibility than this: He suffers from the disease of our time, narcissism and has so fallen in love with the image of himself in the mirror that he disdains everyone else.

Like Narcissus, he doesn’t realize the reflection is his own. Narcissus perished staring at the reflection he loved so much, unable to move forward. And so it is with Antonio, he is perishing and so are our hopes for a greater LA.




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20 Responses to Antonio’s Mystery Malady — Why It All Went So Wrong

  1. Pacoima Resident says:

    Well said Ron. Couldn’t have done better myself. I never thought Antonio was malicious, only self-centered and easily persuaded by anyone rich and influential willing to feed his ego. In one word, he’s “weak”.

  2. Benjamin Cole says:

    Well, his plan to the 10-year build out of the subway is a good one. If he pulls that one off, he rescues his image and some of the reality.

  3. Benjamin Cole says:

    Well, his plan to the 10-year build out of the subway is a good one. If he pulls that one off, he rescues his image and some of the reality.

  4. RubyJackson says:

    I totally agree with you 100%.
    BTW, why no credit for the photo of Mayor VivaLaRaza?

  5. RubyJackson says:

    I totally agree with you 100%.
    BTW, why no credit for the photo of Mayor VivaLaRaza?

  6. disgusted says:

    Dick Riorden, where r you now that we really need you?

  7. Anonymous says:

    I can’t tell you how proud I am to say I voted for Jimmy Hahn. Personality doesn’t make a good leader. Finally people are seeing the corrupt, Mexican Mafia Mayor for what he is, a FAILURE.
    Narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, need for admiration, extreme self-involvement, and lack of empathy for others. Individuals with this disorder are usually arrogantly self-assured and confident. They expect to be noticed as superior. This disorder is only diagnosed when these behaviors become persistent and very disabling or distressing.
    Narcissism refers to the personality trait of egotism Complications: Vulnerability in self-esteem makes individuals with this disorder very sensitive to criticism or defeat = ANTONIO

  8. Anonymous says:

    The Council rendered Antonio a decisive defeat on DWP rate increases. He has lost all credibilty and influence with the Council. They have smelled blood, and they are not going to stop challenging the Mayor on every initiative.
    Brilliant performance by Krekorian, the adult in the crowd.

  9. scratch says:

    Your diagnosis of chronic narcissism is mine as well. He makes promises he has no intention of keeping. Beneath the many facades he puts up, there’s just emptiness that is taking form in empty policies. But – he represents the ills of Los Angeles, he reflects the narcissism of the public that put him in office. There’s kind of a poetic justice in him destroying Los Angeles economically and being at the helm as the ship gains water.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Please post the update on city council DWP rate hike that happened today? The conversations were so convuluded I tuned out. What was the final vote?

  11. Anonymous says:

    L.A.’s New Mayor, Tony Ramon Villar
    Patrick Mallon
    Wednesday, June 8, 2005
    On May 17, Antonio Villaraigosa, 52, became the first Latino mayor of the City of Angels since 1872.
    Since it’s unfair to make any predictions about how the new mayor will perform, especially in a sanctuary city like L.A., where an estimated 1 million illegal immigrants reside, it’s requisite to report central facts censured by the fading elitist press. After all, middle class Angelinos and people who live in gated communities might want to know more about what Mr. Villaraigosa has said and done and who he’s run with to better understand what he might do in the future.
    First, his victory, while symbolically significant to the Hispanic community and a power shift in black-Latino relations, is considerable on a tectonic front. “The old white, Jewish and black coalitions of Los Angeles politics are being broken up as Hispanics and blacks are figuring out ways to share power,” says Franklin Gilliam, a political scientist at UCLA.
    But the turnout was so pathetic that the outcome should not be considered an enthusiastic citywide mandate. In what might be a new low in mayoral politics for a city of this size, ONLY 10 percent of L.A.’s 4.5 million residents decided the victor, and of 1.47 million registered voters, only 33 percent, or just under 500,000, bothered to show up.
    Despite the public indifference, Villaraigosa was instantly crowned as one of the leading Latino politicians in the country and a major player in Latino politics nationally. He’ll undoubtedly be considered a future gubernatorial candidate, but his anti-law-enforcement immigration stance poses a direct challenge to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s positions on driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants and border security.
    “It’s not enough to elect Latino leadership. If they’re supporting legislation that denies the undocumented driver’s licenses, they don’t belong in office,” said former Speaker of the California Assembly Villaraigosa in 1997.
    Who Is the New Mayor?
    For starters, Mr. Villaraigosa’s real name is Tony Villar. He was born Antonio Villar; the name is a combination of his birth name and that of his second wife, Connie Raigosa. No big deal; many people change their names. But a routine search of Tony Villar illustrates that almost no mainstream media source has dared touch an apparently sensitive body of accumulated history.
    According to the Los Angeles Times, which endorsed Villaraigosa: “A Mexican American child of City Terrace, a largely immigrant community on Los Angeles’ Eastside, Villaraigosa was raised by his mother after his father abandoned the family. He grew up in poverty and has said he saw his father beating his mother.
    “After bouncing in and out of high school, he went on to graduate from UCLA and earn a law degree at People’s College of Law.”
    While the report creates a positive impression, it’s also grossly misleading. He bounced in and out of UCLA too, arriving in 1972 from East L.A. Community College and leaving in 1975, without graduating until 1977.
    Villaraigosa is not an attorney. He FAILED the bar exam four times. Nor does the Times explain that the People’s College of Law, a communistic institution, is not accredited with the California Bar, and applicants are required to have completed only two years of college education or to have passed a college-level examination. And of the LSAT, a standard entrance test to any law school, the college states that “PCL recognizes the cultural and sociological limitations of tests such as the LSAT.”
    Villaraigosa became a teachers union organizer, later won a state Assembly seat in 1994, and then was speaker of the state Assembly. He was termed out in 2000, ran for mayor in 2001, losing to James Hahn. He then won a seat on the L.A. City Council, assuming office in 2003, and now has been vindicated in his pursuit of the L.A. mayoralty, beating Hahn in a rematch.
    As with most liberal politicians who are mouthpieces for teachers unions and against vouchers or school choice, his kids attended private schools.
    The new mayor has a colorful track record. He still bears the tattoo “BORN TO RAISE HELL.” While at UCLA he took pride in being an affirmative action admit, later stating to students, “Some people have said I got in through the back door, but I left through the front.”
    He also has a radical background as the leader of the UCLA chapter of Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan (MEChA). In fact, he would be forced to renounce his association with MEChA on May 12, 2005, after pressure from the UCLA Bruin Alumni Association.
    MEChA is pure and simple a separatist organization. It doesn’t negotiate. Its founding document, El Plan Espiritual de Aztlan, states, “We do not recognize capricious frontiers on the bronze continent,” and declares that “For the very young there will no longer be acts of juvenile delinquency, but revolutionary acts,” and introduced the motto “Por la raza, todo. Fuera de la raza, nada.” (For those of the [Hispanic] race, everything. For those not of the [Hispanic] race, nothing.)
    He was a leading speaker at the January 1995 Latino Summit Response to Prop. 187 at U.C. Riverside, where Latino politicians, professors and activists gave racist, seditious speeches to about 500 attendees pledging noncompliance with the controversial law that would have denied public education, social services and health care to residents in the state illegally.
    http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2005/6/7/154251.shtml

  12. Sandy Sand says:

    Well said. Now where are those recall petitions?

  13. Anonymous says:

    I wholeheartedly support the view that Villaraigosa has been a disappointing leader and a lousy mayor. But I’m tired of the commenting klavern that insists on adding the racist slurs “Mayor VivaLaRaza,” the “Mexican Mafia Mayor,” “Mayor MEChA” etc.: Enough. Attack him on the merits of his performance as mayor, but please put the racist slurs back in your hate-filled closet…

  14. Anonymous says:

    Freedom of Speech, Press, Religion and Petition
    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
    http://www.ratical.com/co-globalize/BillOfRights.html

  15. Anonymous says:

    Freedom of Speech, Press, Religion and Petition
    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the FREEDOM OF SPEECH, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
    http://www.ratical.com/co-globalize/BillOfRights.html

  16. Anonymous says:

    Yeah Sandy Sand where are those recall petitions?
    Funny how all you internet nerds keep saying stuff about recall this politician and that one but are too lazy to actually do something about it
    Even John and Ken know how to get off their ass and petition and they’re dumb as hell

  17. Veto says:

    Thanks for my ERIP Little Tonee, I love you

  18. Veto says:

    Thanks for my ERIP Little Tonee, You don’t appear to be good for anything else. I love you and ERIP!!

  19. Astonished says:

    I understand that yesterday Tony the turncoat was speeching to a a bunch of people over at the corner of 1st and Main. Apparently a group of citizens voiced their displeasures with his administration. Tony sent the General Services Police over to make them shut up and move on.
    Sounds a lot like nazi Germany to me!!!

  20. John Taxpayer says:

    What a disappointment! Total failure of leadership. Absolutely worthless.

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