Comment on this post

Kibbitzers, Second-Guessers, Bystanders — Everybody’s Got Opinions After the Election

On his way out the door of City Hall, Austin Beutner has finally spoken out about the budget calamity and the lack of any strategy to deal with the now $404 million deficit for next fiscal year — 10 percent of the entire general fund.

“We’ve just reelected half the City Council, and I’ve not heard one of
them propose a solution to a $400-million problem that’s 60 days away,”
Beutner told LA Chamber of Commerce members Thursday.

His comments come two days after the election and  just days before the dollar-a-year deputy mayor quits his post to join a new foundation on urban issues being set up by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg as part of his preparation to run for mayor of LA in 2013.

At least as reported by the LA Times, he made no mention of the fact that his own boss has provided virtually no leadership during the nearly three-year budget crisis or that he supported the re-election of the very same Council members who have failed to propose a solution to the budget crisis.

Despite the same old, same old results of Tuesday’s elections, we ought to be holding a parade down Grand Avenue for every one of the ordinary citizens who stepped forward and worked so hard to throw out the deadwood at City Hall and bring in new faces with new ideas and a measure of integrity.

Instead, the kibbitzers, second-guessers and bystanders are taking over the conversation, which is fair enough.

It would have been more helpful if they had spoken so forthrightly during recent months or even gotten involved in the election process and worked for the changes they believe are needed.

Hopefully, they, like Beutner, will keep speaking out from their hearts in the coming months as services are slashed and workers punished for the failure of the city’s leadership.

My own blog post on the election has drawn a record 53 comments, all of them whether praising or blaming are provocative and thought-provoking.

Ken Draper at City Watch LA today published some of the harshest criticisms of my own efforts with LA Clean Sweep.

Kevin Roderick, of course, delighted in the establishment’s victory and provided the mocking headline “Cancel the Revolution.”

Joseph Mailander at Street Hassle, more thoughtfully, surveyed the political landscape and offered his personal advice that I “take a month or so off” to clear my head.

Jay Handal of the Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates suggested in an email blast that LA Clean Sweep change its name and leadership

It’s all helpful if we are ever going to create a city government that respects everyone in LA, balances the competing interests, needs and values and does so in a responsible way.

The only goal I have — or anyone involved in LA Clean Sweep has — is to stimulate and inform a lively public conversation that will lead to a greater Los Angeles, a great LA in fact.

If anyone thinks that 88 percent of the electorate being nothing but bystanders is a sign of a healthy community, they are dead wrong.

When someone like Tony Cardenas can win re-election with 4,000 votes — little more than 1 percent of the population of his district — something is terribly wrong.

But let’s take a minute to pay homage to those who dared to run for public office and all the volunteers who walked precincts and staffed phone banks for them, even those who merely voted — they participated and deserve to be respected, not belittled.

Enhanced by Zemanta
This entry was posted in City Hall, Community Activists, Hot Topics, LA Clean Sweep, Los Angeles and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Kibbitzers, Second-Guessers, Bystanders — Everybody’s Got Opinions After the Election

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hello Ron,
    I appreciate all the hard work by the activists even if they weren’t successful.
    It takes time to bring big change.
    Here is one thought for proceeding.
    Ron, you either should be a blogger that helps support Clean Sweep or the head of Clean Sweep, not both.
    Unfortunately, you feel in order to agitate that you must attack people. But you attack so many people unfairly, that you come off a s a cranky tea party guy.
    That won’t work in a diverse city like Los Angeles.
    People were turned off by you and all the negativity from your group.
    I’m a Democrat but Reagan was successful because he was optimistic, not just one who oftentimes blindly accuses people.
    Ron, I believe that you are in this for the right reasons and not for financial gain. Perhaps even some people who work in govt or are part of labor, or are environmentalists, might support you, if you were more factual, and less attack driven.
    Good luck.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ron, you totally rule. 8:06 doesn’t understand journalism.

  3. Anonymous says:

    8:06 here is a thought. — this city has already tried liberal sanctuary loving union friendly politics and as we can see it’s not working. Maybe a tea party guy/gal is what LA needs.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Ron Kaye…the Mr. Rodgers of local politics.

  5. Stzlyee says:

    You have to go door to door and register new voters. I don’t know Box, or any candidate that ran. Not enough media? Not enough interest. I asked a spanish speaking cashier at Vons, did you vote and she said NO. She has only one interest; to send money home to Mexico.
    A police pension, a City Council Salary, and one other pension all paid to Bernard Parks. I understand one of the pensions is considered, “double dipping”… If so, why can’t we correct this?
    A Councilman lives outside his district. Why can’t we correct this?
    DWP said they were broke. They lied. Why can’t we have honest law-abiding leaders at DWP?
    We have public funds being delivered to the hands of Privateers who give minimum wage jobs to Constituents, which does nothing for empowering communities; but rather a benefit for the private investor who gets public subsidiaries. We need $25 per hour jobs just to live in LA.
    The cost of renting doubled in 10 years. Why are tenants paying registration and SCEP fees? LAHD does not do ONE thing for Tenants. Its LAW: The law requires landlords to pay interest on security deposits. If landlords refuse, LAHD does nothing. If tenants don’t pay SCEP and Landlords don’t pay Interest, the LAW is set up to evict the tenant.
    The tenant then has the right to sue, in small claims court or Civil. Meanwhile the tenant get evicted over 2.98 cents when the Landlord owes each and every tenant in every building they own interest.
    Commissioner Harrison said, come back after you move out for the 40.00 in interest the Landlord owes. Commissiner Harrison ruled by the Bench.
    Any lawer want to commence a Class Action agaist apartment owners .. bring justice to the equasion: Contact Stzlyee on Twitter.

  6. Stzlyee says:

    You have to go door to door and register new voters. I don’t know Box, or any candidate that ran. Not enough media? Not enough interest. I asked a spanish speaking cashier at Vons, did you vote and she said NO. She has only one interest; to send money home to Mexico.
    A police pension, a City Council Salary, and one other pension all paid to Bernard Parks. I understand one of the pensions is considered, “double dipping”… If so, why can’t we correct this?
    A Councilman lives outside his district. Why can’t we correct this?
    DWP said they were broke. They lied. Why can’t we have honest law-abiding leaders at DWP?
    We have public funds being delivered to the hands of Privateers who give minimum wage jobs to Constituents, which does nothing for empowering communities; but rather a benefit for the private investor who gets public subsidiaries. We need $25 per hour jobs just to live in LA.
    The cost of renting doubled in 10 years. Why are tenants paying registration and SCEP fees? LAHD does not do ONE thing for Tenants. Its LAW: The law requires landlords to pay interest on security deposits. If landlords refuse, LAHD does nothing. If tenants don’t pay SCEP and Landlords don’t pay Interest, the LAW is set up to evict the tenant.
    The tenant then has the right to sue, in small claims court or Civil. Meanwhile the tenant get evicted over 2.98 cents when the Landlord owes each and every tenant in every building they own interest.
    Commissioner Harrison said, come back after you move out for the 40.00 in interest the Landlord owes. Commissiner Harrison ruled by the Bench.
    Any lawer want to commence a Class Action agaist apartment owners .. bring justice to the equasion: Contact Stzlyee on Twitter.

  7. KK says:

    Ron:
    You and Steven Leigh Morris from the LA Weekly have inspired and provoked me to get involved in city politics. And, I don’t know whether to thank you both or hate the ground you walk on. Ignorance may be bliss particularly when you see first hand how powerful the forces are that have driven the city to this point.
    What your detractors fail to realize is that people ARE voting, except they are voting with their feet. The new census data shows that LA has grown less than 3% since 2000, Yet, the density hawks on both sides of the aisle (labor as well as developers) want LA to continue down the same mindless, unsustainable path of development to creat short term jobs.
    What your detractors fail to recognize is almost Sisyphaen of getting residents more involved in the process where the powers that be do everything they can to make it arcane and difficult, at a time when demands on time are at a crescendo level. Most Angelenos are having trouble getting enough sleep (except, of course, some public employees) because their days are so full.
    The service you are providing on this blog and with Clean Sweep is real information about what is happening and forming a political group who will be able to mnake a difference.
    What you are speaheading, Ron, isn’t easy to do, but boy have you put us a considerable way down the road. There will always be pot shotters who seek to be proven right as well as some whose commentaries are of value.
    You’re making a difference, Ron, and for that, I salute you.

  8. Anonymous says:

    8:06: I am also a democrat and think the issues that Ron raises are neither democrat or republican, but are city issues. Whining about the tone of strongly held points of view while the city continues down a path to destruction is,at least, anemic and patronizing at worst, particularly since you hide behind the anonymous handle. Frankly, stop bitching about the correctness of the placement of a fork, when the dinner table is on fore.

  9. Anonymous says:

    The Ken Draper and Kevin Rodericks of the world are just reporters of the events of the day. You can get that anywhere. Ron, you are in a different class and the only one who has revealed the dirt of City Hall, vital information for the uninformed. That the authorities have done little to cut out the corruption or the corrupt is a reflection of the general malaise in the city. Draper & Roderick will be cheerleaders as the city continues to slip into the abyss led by the current leadership. Continue with your exposures. Some of us appreciate and admire your efforts. You inspired many of us to better our city. The critics leave me cold.

  10. Leslie says:

    I like critics like Ron, for without him/them I would not know much or any of the details behind the Roll Call, Tablulate the Vote.
    Someone said: Frankly, stop bitching about the correctness of the placement of a fork, when the dinner table is on fore.
    Sorry this is the wrong fork. It does not belong in Public Govt. No one want Fraud Waste or Abuse for dinner.
    Some one said,
    Ron, I believe that you are in this for the right reasons and not for financial gain. Perhaps even some people who work in govt or are part of labor, or are environmentalists, might support you, if you were more factual, and less attack driven.
    Good luck.
    The attacks are not really attacks when they bring sunshine, and transparency on fraud. Yes there is artistic flavoring Courtesy of Ron, but the facts remain same.
    You want Ron to sit down at a corrupt table.
    Change in the City comes from the sprit of the people. Change the people, change the sprit

  11. 1601 N Vine says:

    Someone said “Fore” You know, like Tiger Woods. Sit down at the Table. Stuff your face- Fuck YOU>- tablulate the vote, fraud waste and abuse.
    Now we have a situation. We have major cutbacks in Govt. Funding. Well, all hell is about to crack City of LA down. No more move up to an open Fed Grant, No more move up to DWP job.
    Pension funds
    LAHD
    Developers
    1601 N Vine Street
    Our Tax Dollars! Just because City of LA Constituents don’t give a Shit doesn’t mean Public Officals can give their donors tax subsidaries, development projects and other ventures to Enpower Yourself.
    I side with Ron. I side with All who hold public Officials Accountable.

  12. Anonymous says:

    8:06am You have no idea the frustration and anger many of us have with our politicians and the corruption. Ron isn’t being negative and attacking. He’s being REALISTIC HONEST. Many of us are as passionate as he and the other activists are. We’re the ones who go to speak out at City Council and other meetings. We’re the ones who blast email all over the city to inform people. We’re the ones making calls and helping other friends all over the city. I would bet 8:06am is one of the council staffers or a person who has no clue the hard work many of us do and has failed to do his share. I invite them to join us. I’m also a Democrat and appreciate the hard work Ron does on this blog to keep us all informed. I also think the LA Weekly has come a long way with reporting as well. They can take the spot of LA Times as our local newspaper. I don’t always agree with them however, they report stories the others don’t. They at least give you the opportunity to post your opinion. Unlike the LA Slimes who censor what they don’t like.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Ron makes up half the shit that gets posted in this blog because he can’t be bothered to do proper research or present things objectively. So the mayor receives Laker tickets and it’s the scandal of the century. But Ron’s hero Trutanich receives Lady Gaga tickets and drops his year long hyped up criminal case against AEG in tandem and no word whatsoever. Every other day it’s some accusation of corruption. But when Ron’s buddy Doug Dowie actually goes to prison for fraud and trying to rip off you taxpayers, not a word. Yet Doug gets to contribute articles to this blog.
    Utter bullshit

  14. Anonymous says:

    3:59: so why do you come back over and over and over again and post the same things over and over and over again? Sounds like you don’t like Ron to write what he is writing. Feels like your paycheck is involved

  15. Anonymous says:

    The issue isn’t whether Ron and his friends tried, but whether something is learned from the results. I think Ken Draper is trying to say something politely, but it’s something that is important because failure to learn from experience is just going to result in more electoral failures. It’s not like Clean Sweep had no warnings, it just failed to take notice of its own weaknesses. In addition, the kind of money that is required to run a modern campaign is light years beyond what Clean Sweep was capable of, and it failed to create alliances with organizations and people who could put together an effective amount of campaign money. It may very well be true that a well funded campaign against Tom Labonge still would have lost, but it would have been interesting to see what it could have accomplished. In Labonge’s case, going negative would merely have been to be truthful, and that’s what a winning campaign would have looked like early on. What we didn’t see was some hard headed but imaginative campaigning, based on reducing Labonge’s positives early on. This should have been easy provided it was funded.

  16. Anonymous says:

    3:59, if you don’t like Trutanich, it is OK. We don’t have to like everyone, but why must you insist on coming to this blog and demand that Ron write against the man. He may not be the best, but the Mayor & City Council are ten times worse. There is only so much corruption one can write about. Just wondering how much you contributed and helped elect some clean members to the Council or are you a chronic complainer about one person and one person only?

  17. Anonymous says:

    6:45 — agree completely.
    This is a problem that people like 6:45 always find something to complain about this or that candidate. When Villar and clowncils are many times worse and are corrupt to the bone. There is no perfect candidate but it’d been great to replace some of the clowncils. Cant get worse than we’ve got now.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Registered Voters in the City of LA don’t seem to care one way or another based on turnout. Not one new Councilman, out of four? Hmm, did they count the votes proper? Defalut victory.

  19. James McCuen says:

    I for one appreciate the hard work of Ron Kaye.
    You may have criticisms of Ron Kaye, but unless you think the current City Council is the best, then you need to stop criticizing and get off your butt and get to work for 2013.

  20. Anonymous says:

    @March 11, 2011 6:45 PM
    If you talk about money and campaign professionals how do you explain what happened in CD-10 with the money, name recognition, very sophisticated campaign voter targeting, and media attention of Rudy Martinez?
    And if all of that was lacking in CD-4 how do you explain the closer margins?
    Huizar: 64%
    Labonge: 55%

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>