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Election Night Memories & Morning Must Reads




While waiting for elections results on Tuesday night that seemed to take forever, LA journalists found lots of ways to amuse themselves:

For instance, the folks over at Zócalo posted two Q&A sessions with Garcetti and Greuel that asked all the right questions. We highly recommend reading them both in their entirety, but here are a few notable exchanges—first from the Garcetti interview:

Q: Obama said he has only two colors of suits, gray and blue, in order to eliminate choices. What suit colors do you have?
A:Oh my gosh. I’ve got blue suits, I have gray suits, I have black suits. And I believe I have, like, a brown suit. Twice as many choices but half as many suits.

Q: What animal fills you with terror?
A:I think it’s the chupacabra. I don’t know if it’s out there, but if it is, that frightens the heck out of me.

…and then, from the Greuel interview:

Q: What weapon would you choose if a zombie apocalypse came to L.A.?
A:I have no idea! [An aide says she doesn’t have to answer the question.] I think if a zombie apocalypse came to L.A., I’d probably run. That’d be my weapon. I’m not sure there’d be anything I could do to defend myself.

Q: When did you last laugh?
A: Just now. When you asked about the apocalypse.

Among the most entertaining election commentaries of the evening, not surprisingly, were from Twitter. Here are some of our favorites:

‏Gene Maddaus (LA Weekly) @GeneMaddaus
Well I’d say this mayor’s race is about complete. IBEW boss Brian D’Arcy just gave me the middle finger from his 2nd floor office window.

‏Gene Maddaus (LA Weekly) @GeneMaddaus
D’Arcy’s staff said they were calling the cops 20 minutes ago. Where are they?

Gene Maddaus (LA Weekly) @GeneMaddaus
Well I did my best. Here’s video of me shouting a question at Brian D’Arcy’s rolled-up car window as he drives away.

Frank Stoltze (KPPC) ‏@StoltzeFrankly
@ericgarcetti supporters gather outside the Hollywood Palladium for his election night party. #lamayor

Frank Stoltze (KPPC) ‏@StoltzeFrankly
@ericgarcetti father Gil feeling optimistic at the Hollywood Palladium. #LAMayor.

Steve Lopez (LA Times) @LATstevelopez
Vote-counting systems that are more efficient: pigeons fly votes downtown, Mr. Ed scratches hoof once for Greuel, twice for Garcetti

Steve Lopez (LA Times) @LATstevelopez
can anyone take a picture of the vote-counting abacus city clerk uses?

Steve Lopez (LA Times) ‏@LATstevelopez
i’m watching kcal 9. the bear stealing garbage is very efficient. can we get him to count votes in the l.a. city election?

Alice Walton (KPPC) ‏@TheCityMaven
The @Wendy_Greuel DJ is now playing the Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back” … which I think means @Villaraigosa has taken over the playlist.

David Zahniser (LA Times) ‏@DavidZahniser
MT @TheCityMaven reports that the @Wendy_Greuel party just put on Journey


While LA was in the throes of election obsession, there was a new development in the matter of the DOJ spying on journalists. It is a still unfolding tale that WLA finds chilling.

The New Yorker’s Ryan Lizza has the story. Here are some clips:

Yesterday, the Washington Post reported that, as part of the investigation of [an alleged leak by a former State Department contractor named Stephen Jin-Woo Kim], Obama’s Department of Justice seized e-mails from [Fox News’ reporter James Rosen’s] personal Gmail account. In the search warrant for that request, the government described Rosen as “an aider, and abettor, and / or co-conspirator” in violating the Espionage Act, noting that the crime can be punished by ten years in prison. Rosen was not indicted in the case, but the suggestion in a government document that a reporter could be guilty of espionage for engaging in routine reporting is unprecedented and has alarmed many journalists and civil libertarians.

The document uncovered today suggests the government seized “call detail” records from Rosen’s work and cell phones, which would show whom he called, who called him, how long they spoke, and the times of the calls. The document suggests that the government was seeking only the subscriber records for the two White House numbers targeted, information that a government source said would include the name of the official who used the specific line.


Rosen declined to comment on the case. Asked if the phone numbers of any reporters had been targeted in the Kim investigation, a spokesperson for Fox News said they were not familiar with the new information regarding Fox’s phone records and directed The New Yorker to a statement released yesterday by Michael Clemente, the executive vice-president for News at the cable channel: “We are outraged to learn today that James Rosen was named a criminal co-conspirator for simply doing his job as a reporter. In fact, it is downright chilling. We will unequivocally defend his right to operate as a member of what up until now has always been a free press.”


In her excellent blog, ACEs Too High, journalist/child advocate, Jane Stevens brings to our attention an innovative community play titled ZERO that dramatizes the affects of zero tolerance policies in schools. Stevens takes in-depth look at the process of creating ZERO (which was put on by the Black Parallel School Board and funded by the California Endowment), and the surprising effect it has had on viewers—many of them state lawmakers and their staffs.

Here’s a clip (but go read the whole thing):

The first time they performed the play, it was for legislators and their staff members in the State Capitol. “I thought only 20 people would show up,” said Pinkston. “The room was packed — 70 people watched.” And the buzz began.

“I know that a lot of the people were taken aback,” said Bradley. “People don’t realize how bad it can get. It was touching to me because people seemed to really care about the situation, because that gave us hope for change.”

In August 2012, by the time they presented the play at the Guild Theater, so many people had heard about the play that tickets were sold out.

“The play shows how the teachers and administrators are under constant pressure to perform,” said Pinkston. “They’re under siege. They’re forced to get rid of the kids they don’t want to teach. Parents don’t have a lot of time and attention to work with kids, because they’re working two or three jobs. So, the community has to take some ownership about what’s going on.”

At the end, the students, teachers, parents and community members in the audience were gripped with sadness and frustration at the heavy odds against James, the main character. “This whole experience has been humanizing,” said White. “The play’s a microcosm that what actually happens in schools.”

Half of the 200 people in the audience filled out comment cards. More than half felt the play had challenged or changed their opinion. Some of the comments:

*We must come up with a different way to deal with discipline in school. Suspension is the not the answer.”

*I plan to push harder to start this conversation within my school community and advocate for a shift toward supporting each other and developing strengths-based schools.”

*I am willing to challenge the rate of suspensions at my school.”

*I will support legislation to fund schools & change school discipline to provide restorative practices & social-emotional learning for school community.”

*I am a middle school teacher (34 years)…. I have “James” in my classes. James deserves every bit of help; however, standing in front of the class looking out, I see 34 other students waiting for me to do something with disruptive students. The school do not have the personnel to work “deeply” with James. I talk to parents after school for hours, but during class, I have to educate the non-James.”

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