In My Orbit…

7 04 2010

Digital Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti /

Chicken Little, the sky is indeed falling.  The House of Cards that is the City of Los Angeles fiscal management is crashing down around us, with the requisite posturing, finger-pointing and blame being laid.  You know, the same behaviors that got us into this mess in the first place.

Along with digits being raised and cries of fie and foul screamed throughout the Basin, the media whore that is May-V will be making the television rounds.  LAist accurately dubs it, Villaraigosa’s ‘We’re Almost Out of Money’ media tour.  The lowlights:

“9:00 AM — LOS ANGELES — Mayor Villaraigosa will be interviewed on Bloomberg News about the budget between 9:00am – 9:30am PST.

“10:00 AM — LOS ANGELES — Mayor Villaraigosa will be interviewed by Ali Velshi on CNN about the budget between 10:00am – 10:30am PST.

“10:45 AM — LOS ANGELES — Mayor Villaraigosa will be interviewed by Larry Mantle on “AirTalk” on KPCC 89.3 about the budget between 10:45am – 11:00am PST.

“3:30 PM — LOS ANGELES — Mayor Villaraigosa will be interviewed by Neil Cavuto on Fox Business News about the budget between 3:30pm – 4:00pm PST.

“7:00 PM — LOS ANGELES — Mayor Villaraigosa will be interviewed by Art Laboe on 92.3 fm about the Census between 7pm – 12am PST.

Granted, the last appearance is to plug the Census, but it still adds up to the same thing: money desperately needed!

After the L.A. City Council slapped down the DWP rate hike which would pay for a carbon surcharge and ensure May-V’s place in history as “The Greenest Mayor on the Planet”, the DWP Commission has chosen to not transfer a remaining 73.5 million to the City’s General Fund coffers.  According to our hand-picked-by-the-Mayor Controller, Lil’ Wendy Gruel, “Without the full Power Revenue Transfer I now project that if the City remains on its current path, the City’s General Fund will be out of money – in fact it will be negative $10 million – on May 5th, 2010.”

That was two days ago, hence Smilin’ Tony’s money dance.   Displeasure is being served up in the local papers.

LA Times Blames Mayor; Daily News calls for Villaraigosa’s Resignation.

A pull quote from a Daily News editorial from radio personality Doug McIntyre:

“Here’s his legacy: the city is broke, we lead the nation in poverty and homelessness, and we’ve hemorrhaged our manufacturing and tax base. The mayor has proven himself incapable of righting these wrongs. We need a real leader. Antonio Villaraigosa is not up to the job.”

The rest is equally brutal.  Wanted: a real leader for L.A. in crisis times.

This would indeed be popcorn-worthy, if, as an Angelean, I were not so personally affected.

The Butterfly Effect

11 03 2010

Monarch Butterfly on flower by Art Planet

The lynch pin of federal and state energy and climate legislation has been rooted in the whole idea of anthropological global warming.

Then that “settled” science suffered a magnitude 9.9 earthquake with the leaked emails from East Anglia University all but admitting the scientific findings were doctored in order to influence policy.  The Climategate aftershocks continue, with more and more senators and governors calling for putting the brakes on the Environmental Protection Agency’s posturings and any push through of climate-change legislation.

The Guardian and other international media were all over this story from the jump.  Now that the U.S. news media has decided to cover the story, the Boston Globe makes its contribution to the fallout from the increasingly fraudulent findings:  After errors, global warming gets cold shoulder.

Closer to my home, a non-partisan legislative analyst has declared that California’s freshly minted global warming law would cause job losses.  A pull quote from the article:

“The report comes at a politically charged moment, when polls show employment to be Americans’ top concern. Signature gathering began last week on a November ballot initiative that would delay the law, known as AB 32, until unemployment drops to 5.5% for at least a year. California joblessness is over 12% today.”

Uh oh.  From today’s L.A. Times,  California’s unemployment rate now tops 20% in eight counties. So as we get more dire news about state employment projections, along with more scrutiny into those doctored AGW reports, it looks like AB 32 may well be aborted.

Hard on the heels of that story, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (DWP) is scrapping plans to build an 85-mile “green power” transmission line across the desert.  DWP drops plans to build 85-mile power transmission line across desert.

This DWP project has been surrounded by controversy and pissing off environmentalists and desert residents alike.  It never made sense to me anyway, and seemed like another way to further burnish L.A.’s reputation of energy robber baron.   A telling statement from the article confirms this:

“The announcement reflected a shift in policy toward developing renewable resources closer to the DWP’s existing power corridors.”

No, duh.

Like Governor Arnold Schwarzennegger, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is trying to locate a legacy out of the sludge of his failed leadership, so he was banking on making his bones as the leader of the “cleanest, greenest big city in America,” with this project.   Smilin’ Tony, of course, was unavailable for comment.

Things that make you go, “Hmm…”.

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