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L.A.’s nanny mayor with Utopian intentions has made life hell

L.A.’s nanny mayor with Utopian intentions has made life hell

When Antonio Villaraigosa became mayor of Los Angeles in mid 2003, he promised to focus on quality-of-life issues the way Rudy Giuliani had so successfully in New York.  To Angelenos, the number one quality-of-life issue is transit.  Pretty much everything else pales in comparison (as long as you don’t live in a gang-infested area).

Villaraigosa has failed miserably.

And no wonder.  He, like Mayor Bloomberg, mistakes nannyism for leadership. Every minute they spend figuring out how to protect adults from themselves is 60 seconds in which they’re not doing the job they were elected to do.

Hence, in Los Angeles, porn actors are required to wear condoms for their own safety (though gay men are not); it’s now illegal to park beside a broken parking meter; and stores are banned from putting your groceries in plastic bags.

Like night follows day, the city has become all but unlivable for anyone who drives anywhere at any time.

First come the potholes.

On Monday I had a meeting around noon on Sunset Blvd just east of UCLA.  After allocating an extra 40 minutes for traffic, I exited the San Diego Freeway and drove east, dodging potholes—some of them approaching sinkhole size—as though the street was a slalom course.

Nothing had changed since the last time I’d driven there.  If anything, the holes were deeper and more plentiful.  Which is particularly telling given that that stretch of road passes through some of the most expensive real estate in the world—and the city touts its ability to get broken parking meters back up and running in no more than three hours after initial report.  Potholes?  Fuhgeddaboudit.  Operation Pothole ended after 14 weeks in 2005.

My meeting ended at about 5:30, leaving me half an hour to make my 6:00 dinner in Santa Monica, which should’ve been more than enough time.  So I drove side streets down to Wilshire (dodging potholes all along the way), and headed west.  About two blocks east of Westwood Blvd., I screeched to a halt.  And stayed stopped.  Three lanes of traffic were gridlocked.

In 15 minutes I went maybe—maybe!—30 yards.  I checked all the radio stations for reports that might shed light.  Had the rogue cop, Christopher Dorner, shot up the federal building a ways ahead?  No, not a word about any police action.  Nor did I hear sirens or see cop cars racing to and fro.

I told my Droid to “call LAPD traffic division.”  What came up on screen was “Wilshire Division LAPD.”  I pressed send and got a recorded message telling me to call 911 in an emergency, “otherwise please hold for an officer.”  I held.  And held.  And held.  For five minutes.

At last a voice answered.  I said I was theoretically driving west on Wilshire in Westwood but that I’d been stopped dead, along with everyone else, for 20 minutes now.  “What’s going on?  Why aren’t there any cops directing traffic?”

“I have no idea,” he said.  “I’m not in that division.  Call the West L.A. division.”

“What’s the number?”

“I don’t have that in my head.”

“So can you look it up?”

“I don’t have anything to look it up on.”

“Well, you are LAPD, aren’t you?”

“Yeah.”

“And you can’t connect me to another division?”

“What would you like me to do?”

“I’d like you to do you the [expletive] job I pay you for,” I shouted said.

He hung up.

In retrospect, I should’ve told him that I was talking to him on my handheld cell phone and parked in front of a broken meter while shooting a porn movie with plastic grocery bags as condoms.  He’d have had a battalion there in minutes.

And so it goes in Antonio Villaraigosa’s Los Angeles.  Where the mayor wants to raise the sales tax yet again.

“We’ve had consolidations of departments, we found efficiencies. We’ve done everything that we can.

“The fact of the matter is, when you look at the kinds of tough decisions that we’ve made … I can now support a sales tax increase,” he said.

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Comments

casualobserver | February 13, 2013 at 5:00 pm

And yet people continue to move to L.A., while those already there simply tolerate it. As a non-Angelino, but someone who used to travel to the area a few times a year for business, I learned early on to schedule no more than ONE meeting in the morning and ONE in the afternoon, unless they were very, very close by to each other. I also learned to call those I knew for ‘surface street’ directions when needed.

Funny thing, whenever I was late it was treated as if it were normal…

    TrooperJohnSmith in reply to casualobserver. | February 13, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Soon, you can schedule 4-5 meetings a day in some little town somewhere north of Eh-Lay. All each of the participants will need to do is just on the high-speed rail, take it to your destination, have your meetings and then train back to the city. Once arrived in Eh-Lay, you can sit on the 405, the Ten or one of the other free parking lots and write your reports on your hands-free smart devices.

    But the climate is so nice, and it’s a, you know, dry heat unless the Santa Annas are blowing.

I am soooooo glad I moved from that cesspool (I currently live in one of the few conservative areas of the Peoples Republic of Kalifornia). I love watching the movie 2012 it was a terrible movie but I get to watch LA fall into the ocean. My previous favorite was Volcano, where Wilshire got wiped out by lava. 🙂

    Juba Doobai! in reply to SPS. | February 13, 2013 at 9:40 pm

    Yep. 2012 was one father best comedies I’ve seen in a long time. I even have it on disc and still try to catch it when it’s on the tube.

So exactly why do folks still live there ?
… and don’t tell me it’s about the quality of life.

    No Dark Things in reply to Neo. | February 13, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    Only reason I can come up with is King Taco.

    SoCA Conservative Mom in reply to Neo. | February 13, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    People think LA is like in the movies, however they are woefully mistaken. I lived in LA for 3 years (if you know where La Brea & 3rd cross, that was my neighborhood.) I was SO happy to move back down to San Diego. I had friends visit from all over the country while living there and they all thought it was the pit of hell. It’s not just the traffic, pot holes, taxes, prostitutes, junkies, and homeless on the streets, it’s the awful, people who live there (LukeHandCool excepted.)

    My husband, who grew up on the East Coast, finally admitted he likes the weather here, although not much else.

No Dark Things | February 13, 2013 at 5:26 pm

I live in LA and can’t wait for the big one.

The situation is so bad because the high-density development exceeds the ability of the streets to carry all the traffic and public transit is not a workable solution. It takes almost twice as long to get anywhere on the subway or bus as it does by car. Downtown, the Wilshire corridor and Westwood are already hell. The City of LA is now trying to do the same thing to Hollywood. The City Council recently passed the Hollywood Community Plan to allow for even greater density in Hollywood. The streets in Hollywood are at a stand-still during commuting hours now because it in the middle of major pass-through commuter traffic for the rest of the City and is next to the Santa Monica Mountains where there is only one freeway to get from the San Fernando Valley to Central Los Angeles. That is why three community groups are suing the City to stop the plan and force it to downzone Hollywood in order to relieve the congestion. If you want to help them go to SaveHollywood.org and contribute to their effort.

I’m reading that and going, dude, you’re an LAPD desk officer and you don’t have a phone list with the non-emergency number for the division next door? Really? You are, as Joe Wambaugh so delightfully and eloquently put it, a scrote.

huskers-for-palin | February 13, 2013 at 6:18 pm

This just begs for collapse. This rigid top-down gov’t structure can’t adapt anymore. Bill Whittle was right.

I spent a week in Pasadena in late January. Except for its utopian over-regulation, Pasadena is pretty darn nice, especially since I was escaping a week of freezing fog in Oregon. One could almost consider living there, if one could avoid having to deal with LA. (And besides, SoCal has Zankou Chicken, the greatest fast food place on the face of the planet.)

Living in one of the more conservative places in the P. R. of Kalifornia really wouldn’t be an option for me, however, because you’re still subject to the silliness of Governor Moonbeam and the rest of the union bought-and-paid-for Legislative Assembly in Sacramento.

And, then, if you happen to be a gun owner and want to exercise your right to self defense anywhere, much less outside your home, it’s pure hell.

I’m with Trooper John, but I hate to tell all y’all that as a Native Texan who loves just about everything about Texas, the climate there is miserable nearly all of the time.

Here in the People’s Republic of Eugene, we have pot-holed streets, a plastic bag ban beginning March 1, and a city government that is proposing a $10/month/household ($30/month/business) fee so that we can keep the “amenities” we’re so fond of. Good luck with that.

But I digress. Western Oregon got Californicated about 30 years ago, and we revel in it today.

    Juba Doobai! in reply to Oregon Mike. | February 13, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    See! This is proof of what happens when these nuts move from the hell they voted to create in their own state. They insist on electing Democrats cuz Republicans are evil, and the Democrats enact the same failed policies that created the disaster the nuts fled, then the nuts wonder why the new place they moved to has changed from the paradise they fled to into the hellhole they fled from. Democrats just don’t learn that they can’t keep on making the same political mistakes and getting different results.

theduchessofkitty | February 13, 2013 at 6:31 pm

My sister insists in living in that area. I wondered why, but no longer. Marxists want to live where they feel their best and where they feel superior to “the masses”, squalor or not.

Me? I’ve lived here in TX for almost 15 years. In one place, then another. Two kids. Good friends. Zero regrets.

Forget the infernal summer months. You cannot pay me ten million dollars to move to California.

This was termed “The Bloomberg Syndrome” by VD Hansen (I think).

When you start dictating how much salt people may eat, you begin to find you can’t remove the snow from the streets where removing snow is a basic municipal service.

In a Democracy, people get the government that they deserve. Los Angelinos are getting exactly what they voted for: liberals gone wild.

If you can no longer stand it, move to Texas.

“Utopia intentions?”

I think you mean, ‘corruption, under the guise of utopian intentions.’

The key words are “a guy just pulled knife and tried to rob me at the corner of street X and avenue Y, so I shot him.”

The cops will be there in 5 minutes. They’ll be directing traffic a few minutes after that.

OOo! An LA thread! Perfect for this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYmDEIH4H3A

Found on Sipsey Street Irregulars.

“Emeryville, CA Police Chief Ken James claims it is a myth that guns have a defensive purpose. He says that “Police Officers do not carry a gun as a defensive weapon” and, further, explicitly states that they are carried by officers for offensive use only — that they use them “to intimidate and to show power.”

I bet LA thinks along the same lines…

I was here at LAPD HQ the night when our officers finally broke up the Mayor Villaraigosa endorsed Occupy LA campers across the street on City Hall’s lawn (which they ruined, and, with various vandalism, ended up costing taxpayers a few million bucks). Chief Beck, to his credit, went out with the officers. The mayor, who had encouraged the occupiers, remained in our building, safe from the hordes he had backed. What a putz.

I remember the first time my wife returned from the plastic bagless supermarket and banged on the front door for me to help carry the groceries in. “This country is crazy,” she fumed as we carried in individual items she had had to dump in the back of our SUV with no bags. “Honey, this is L.A. … it’s not America,” I said. Welcome to Utopia.

I read recently it’s been determined the plastic bag ban in San Francisco has resulted in more emergency room visits and an estimated five deaths a year (because unwashed cloth bags harbor harmful bacteria).

I could’ve told you about driving on the Westside at that time of day. Wilshire and Olympic, etc., can become linear parking lots. I remember returning from Japan and being amazed how much worse the traffic had become. I picked our kids up after school one day and they wanted to go to Sawtell in West LA from Santa Monica … we got onto Olympic Blvd. … and it took an hour to get there!!!

As for the unhelpful cop manning the front desk of our Wilshire division, I apologize. There is no excuse for his shabby customer service. Just recently I called one of our divisions to tell them that a stolen car had been towed by a private impound yard located in their area and that they needed to go and recover it. It wasn’t an LAPD stolen, it was stolen out of another city.

He asked me, “What do you want me to do?”

“I need you to send out a unit to recover it.”

“It’s not our stolen.”

“I know, but it’s now in your area.”

We went around and around. Aaargh!

But most of the cops are good and helpful. I feel for them because a lot of the time while I’m trying to talk to them there are members of the public shouting and crying babies in the background … so I’m sure their nerves get frazzled.

Did you know that on LA beaches now, you can’t throw a ball or a frisbee in the summer because it’s a $1,000 fine?

The last time we went to the beach, I told my son to bring the football and he said, “Dad, it’s illegal.”

The Nanny mayor and others think we don’t have the sense to find a safe place to throw a ball or a frisbee somewhere along these huge expanses of beach we have.

I don’t think these tyrannical little commies have utopian intentions at all. All they care about is money and power for themselves and to destroy this country. The more miserable we are the better they like it.
I’m going to stop here.

We should be calling him by his real name, Tony Villar, or at least putting it in parenthesis after every instance of his made-up name.

naw… just call him Villarboboso.

it fits. 😎

I visit the Valley twice a year. A year or so ago I was surprised to see bus stops and some sort of a rail car around town. Seriously? In the Valley? I didn’t see any commuters waiting for buses on bus stops, and even the people who enthusiastically endorse the whole public transportation thing drive cars. They are not crazy. If I’m not mistaken, they got some sort of federal money for public transportation.

Exactly where is Los Angeles anyway? Is it in California? Is it in the United States?

RE: Traffic congestion.

How long will it be before some nanny-stater somewhere decides it’s time to limit vehicles, to only allow x number of license plates in order to control the number of vehicles contributing to traffic problems in a given city?

Let’s start a betting pool on who’ll be first:

a) Mayor Bloomberg of NYC
b) Mayor Villaraigosa of LA
c) Mayor Lee of SF
d) Mayor Bing of Detroit
e) Mayor Hawkins of PH

I was born and raised in L.A. — and when I turned 18 the first thing I did was get out of L.A. and completely out of the L.A. area. That was a long time ago. And — hindsight being 20/20 and all — I didn’t go far enough away. I should have left the State of California entirely even way back then.

My parents still live in L.A. as does my little brother so I relocated in San Diego. At least I was out of that once beautiful city that has become a literal 3rd world cesspit by the “city leaders” own design. The other brother and my sister eventually relocated out of the State of California entirely along with Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and Grandparents.

I and my entire own family shall be relocating out of California soon ourselves. Our retirements, pension accounts, deferred compensation accounts, investment portfolios, educations, tax paying able-bodied hard working offspring, and just lots of spending money are leaving California forever. Anything and everything humanly possible to roll-over out of state and/or simply remove from the reach of the California reprobates in power are already or shall be removed permanently.

And — Lawdy Lawd — I am so excited to finally be leaving this permanently fubar’d state for good. I feel like a little kid waiting for Christmas morning though. The anticipation is practically torturous.

The millions upon millions of California scofflaw criminal illegal immigrants, the vast army of California militant homosexuals, the army of Hollyweird tools, the deeply mentally defunct and morally bankrupt fascist California politicians, and the generic bed-wetting thumb sucker tax & spend Liberals of the California electorate can have it all to themselves. I have absolutely zero problem with that. None whatsoever. After all, it is truly what they ultimately desire more than anything else. I am happy to do my part.

We yearn for what once was “The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave”. We yearn for what was once the United States of America. There are still some slivers of the USA left. But not one sliver of the USA — however slight — is to be found anywhere in California any longer. Not even here in massively military residing San Diego — the last truly predominately Conservative enclave left in all of California.

Amen brother. This city is joke.

VOTE FOR KEVIN JAMES!!!

http://kevinjamesformayor.com

Who can save the City of Los Angeles from bankruptcy? – Draiman

I am a firm believer that you can accomplish more with honey than with vinegar.
The City of Los Angeles is on the brink of Municipal Bankruptcy. If that happens all of LA City employees will sustain a severe economic and financial blow, which cannot be rectified. The people who reside in the City of Los Angeles will sustain much hardship if this financial situation is not resolved amicably.
I propose that all parties handling the city finances and all Union organizations and other organizations that service the city should put all the cards on the table. Show all expenses and liabilities, a conservative approach to projected revenues, no fudging of expenses or revenues.
It is in the best interests of all parties to come to a compromise. Remember a piece of cake is better than no cake at all. Eventually the cow runs out of milk.
Today’s economic and financial situation throughout Los Angeles and the rest of the country as a whole is the worst since the depression.
The City of Los Angeles must aggressively help businesses in trouble survive and court other businesses to locate in the City of Los Angeles. Businesses create jobs and revenues. We must look at the “multiplier affect of thriving businesses”, which creates economic prosperity.

YJ Draiman
http://draimanformayor2013.com

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