Sun, Jul

Smoke and Mirrors or Lies and Myths?


THE VIEW FROM HERE - Does Los Angeles operate on the basis of Smoke and Mirrors or by Lies and Myths?  The obvious answer is both.

All the city councilmembers falsely claim that Los Angeles has a housing shortage and we must build 430,000 units.   LA’s Big Lie #1 was exposed in 2014 when Judge Goodman ruled that population growth in the Hollywood Community Plan was intentionally based on fatally flawed data and wishful thinking to the extent it subverted the law.  The 2020 Census proved Judge Goodman to be correct as Los Angeles lost enough people that the State lost one US Congressional seat.  Per the US Census, between July 2021 and July 2022 California decreased more than 113,000 people.  LA County lost 90,000 people.

There cannot be a housing shortage when the population is decreasing.  In fact, LA’s housing glut is way over 110,000 vacant units.  State of California’s Department of Finance asserts that by 2060, Los Angeles will have 1.7 Million fewer people.

Taxpayers Subsidize the Destruction of Affordable Housing

Another myth is that any political leader from Mayor Karen Bass to the bottom is doing anything to stop the destruction of Affordable Housing. Instead, they make certain that the Crisis is never solved, and then they give billions of dollars to developers to construct Affordable Housing.  That’s a criminal scam if I ever saw one.  The politicos scheme to illegally destroy Affordable Housing and then deceive the voters to pay for new Affordable Housing  Relocating’ Rent-controlled Tenants in La Is a Lucrative Business.  If Karen Bass or the city council wanted to protect poor people or the taxpayers, they’d make certain that law enforcement stopped these illegal activities rather than promoting blatant lies to help the financial rape of the poor and of tax paying homeowners. The formula is simple: illegal evictions lead to homeless crisis, which justifies taxpayers’ paying to replace the Affordable Housing stock which was just destroyed.

Los Angeles’ Odious Myth to Divert the Public’s Attention away from Reality

Big Lie #2 is worse than Housing Shortage Lie. Big Lie #2 falsely claims that we need redistricting because three Mexican councilmembers are racists and met in secret to benefit their districts during the redistricting process.

Here’s an example from September 15, 2023, LAIST:  

The leaked City Hall tapes revealed that three councilmembers and the former president of the L.A. Labor Federation were discussing ways to arrange the redistricting maps to benefit their districts at the expense of others — namely, districts with predominantly Black residents, as well as renters.

Writing such a statement is defamation per se, which may be the reason that LAIST did not name the three councilmembers.  LAist Oct 26, 2022 .  Under the US Supreme Court New York Times vs Sullivan 376 U.S. 254 (1964), a public figure may sue for malicious defamation, i.e., made the statement despite knowing that it was false.  Another aspect of defamation law is that a group may not be defamed. Thus, rather than name the three councilmembers about whom LAist is telling egregious lies, it omits their names.

The three councilmembers to whom LAist is referring must be former council President Nury Martinez, former councilmember Gil Cedillo, and Kevin De Leon. When one reads the tape’s transcript, one sees that nothing they did was to benefit their own districts. By the way under the law, they had every right to have discussions about redistricting. In fact, the law required discussions about redistricting, nor does the proposed new redistricting format stop councilmembers from private discussions.  LAist omits this context.

One direct lie is that they discuss how to benefit themselves and harm Blacks.  For one thing Nury Martinez district was way into the San Fernando Valley miles away from South Central, an area transitioning from Black to Hispanic.  Second Gil Cedillo in Northeast LA was also far away from Black population concentrations. While Kevin DeLeon was in CD 14, it is primarily DTLA and Mexican.  Nothing they discussed benefitted to their districts.

Furthermore, as everyone in Los Angeles media should now know, printing that the three were harming predominantly Black residents, is malicious defamation.  “The Three” said nothing negative about Blacks, but were sympathetic.  To believe LAist’s lie that the “los tres” were anti-Black, one would have to believe that Danny Bakewell, owner of LA’s largest Black newspaper, the LA Sentinel, was also anti-Black. Nury had suggestion to Danny Bakewell a way to end the redistrictingsquabble between two Black districts, Curren Price (CD 9) and Marqueece Harris-Dawson (CD8).  Her solution not to fight over the area around the Coliseum, and let Price continue to represent that area.  Then, Harris-Dawson’s district could slightly West to include LAX.  That way the Black districts would have more assets.  While the resolution benefited two Black councilmembers, it would have had no benefit to Martinez’s, Cedillo’s or DeLeon’s districts.  

One should also realize that Black Justin Wesson, son of the former Black LA city councilmember Herb Wesson, was Nury’s Chief of Staff.  As all journalists in Los Angeles now know, the original purpose of the posting the tape on Reddit was to make Black Justin Wesson unemployed by having Rick Caruso somehow get rid of Nury Martinez. 

LAist’s allusion to “renters” probably refers to Councilmember Nithya Raman, who tried to dump her CD 4 homeowner constituents in the Hills and take over Koreatown.  All three Mexican councilmembers sided with Black Heather Hutt to become the new councilmember for CD 10, i.e., Koreatown.

The Fraud of Re-districting

1) There is nothing wrong with Los Angeles’s current district lines

2)  Increasing the number of crooks on the city council is not a prudent way to reduce corruption.

3) There is, however, an alternative city council structure which would kill city hall corruption, but no politico wants that!  The Corruption Eradicator, The 3/15/45 City Council.

Corruption causes the homelessness crisis which is creeping its ways up the social-economic classes from rent control tenants, hotel workers, nurses, actors and screen writers. Angelenos need to remember Martin Niemöller; “First they came for the X’s and I did not speak out . . . . when they came for me, no one was left to speak out.”  End corruptionism or it will end you.

(Richard Lee Abrams has been an attorney, a Realtor and community relations consultant as well as a CityWatch contributor.  You may email him at [email protected]. The opinions expressed are those of the author and not those of CityWatchLA.com.)


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