Fishin’ with Wesson: Forget Good Government, Next Council President Knows How to Have Fun

Herb Wesson is a charming guy with a great sense of humor who loves kids and trout fishing — why he even did a show on propaganda Channel 35 for kids called “Fishin’ with Wesson.”

But when it comes to political debate, Wesson — unlike the likable babbling buffoon Tom LaBonge — rarely speaks up and when he does, he doesn’t say much of anything worth remembering.

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For his colleagues on the City Council, those are more than enough to make him the popular choice to succeed Eric Garcetti as President when he gears up his mayoral campaign.
Wesson has lined up a majority of votes despite the best efforts of rival Paul Krekorian to do intellectual cartwheels to justify much of the nonsense that goes on in the Council chambers.
Krekorian was no match for Wesson in that regard. The mid-city Councilman didn’t need to be a political gymnast to get the votes; he just needed to know where the votes were and what they wanted for them. 
That’s what helped him to become Speaker of the state Assembly at a time when the Legislature ran so wild that they left Gov. Grey Davis standing naked and defenseless in the face of a humiliating recall election.
White the choir boy Garcetti succeeded in his goal of attaining unanimity 99.93 percent of the time no matter what the cost to the public or the honor of the handful of his colleagues who still prize their honor, Wesson can be counted to let go of the reins of control and spend his days making sure the dog of the week gets adopted.
Search the LA Times or even the LA Sentinel and almost all the links to stories mentioning Wesson are ribbon cuttings, cheer leading events without policy or political significance. Aggressive African-American community leaders include Wesson among those guilty of a “culture of silence…of accommodation” on issues of importance in the black community.
A month ago, he told the City Maven Alice Walton of his ambition in these terms: “There’s one president at a time and that president is Eric Garcetti,
and that is all I’m going to say on that subject …We have so many important pressing things and I’m focused on that,
and I don’t know what happens in the future – that’s not until July.”
Garcetti needs to go full bore to stand a chance in the mayoral election or even if he changes course as runs for Congress if Henry Waxman retires so do other Council elected leaders Jan Perry, herself a mayoral candidate, and Dennis Zine, the traffic cop who thinks he can become Controller.
All in all, it doesn’t exactly excite the dormant hopes of those crying out for real reform of a corrupt and broken system. But the chaos Wesson can bring to the process of mock democracy at least offers hope for better theater — and a lot more laughs.
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