In his eighth and final self-flattering State of the City address to Los Angeles’ four million people, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa offered an advertisement for himself as a Latino salesman for a world far better than the one he will leave behind in his hometown.
Safest, greenest, most mobile, most sustainable, best educated — the superlatives flowed from his mouth like the flood of water down the concrete L.A. River, hundreds of them, one after another, remarkable achievements of a man who sees himself as not even his lovers see him.
Except. Except who could possible live up to the legacy he said he left in what can only be described as the greatest lie he ever told after a lifetime of lying?
Certainly not Wendy Greuel or Eric Garcetti.
And that is something we can all agree on. Much as we might think Tom Bradley’s last years were the beginning of the end, and Dick Riordan’s were much ado about nothing, and Jim Hahn’s were much about doing nothing, and Antonio Villaraigosa’s were the end of what began so long ago, the years that await us offer not even the promise of hope.
Antonio said that, not me. He is better than them — and that is a terrible thought to take to heart.
Or maybe the strategic placement of Greuel — favorite honey of labor and businesss interests — as Antonio left the stage and their prolonged embrace gives us a clue that she will soon be outlining an education program for L.A. schools that big money Eli Broad can truly support after seeing his various initiatives come to so little for so long.