Long-time readers of this blog will recall that, in March 2015, we broke the story that outlaw downtown ringleader Carol Schatz’s ongoing criminal conspiracy, popularly known as the Central City Association, had hired shadowy PR flacks Rodriguez Strategies to shill for this city’s white-power-elite-zillionaire-industrial complex in order to defeat Councilmen José Huizar’s and Curren Price’s surprisingly-for-LA-politicos sane proposals regarding street vending. Rodriguez Strategies deputed its minion, evil PR-thuggette Jessica Borek, to set up a bullshit astroturf group known as “The Coalition to Save Small Business,” and off they went to lie about everything at every public hearing possible on the subject.
Well, evidently Rodriguez Strategies wasn’t doing enough damage for the CCA’s taste, because at some point the opponents of legalized street vending in Los Angeles hired yet another PR firm, Mecoy Communications, run by former reporter Laura Mecoy, pictured above. Yesterday, we obtained a bunch of emails from Laura Mecoy to Kerry Morrison, Carol Schatz, and two business owners who oppose legalized street vending about a meeting Laura’s arranged with the LA Times editorial board. And Laura is worth whatever they’re paying her. Although the Times showed some independent thought in the resulting editorial, Laura got them to take Kerry Morrison’s and Carol Schatz’s delusory and insincere arguments as if they were something more than self-interested expediencies. They’re not. This is a fascinating but all-too-rare glimpse into the interplay between money, power, and media in Los Angeles.
We won’t reproduce the scripts Laura’s provided for Carol and Kerry here. It’s the same nonsense they’ve been pushing since the start. They’re in favor of small business, they want order on the streets, blah-blah-blah. We’ve exposed the falsehoods underlying this pernicious nonsense over and over again, e.g. here, and here, and here, and here.
There’s nothing new in the arguments. And the arguments aren’t serious. The property owners who fund the BIDs and the CCA don’t care one way or another about street vending. They don’t care about small business. All they care about is making money from their property. If street vending truly would destroy small business but the property owners would net more profit, they’d be in favor of it. And they’d have just as many superficially plausible arguments in favor of it, which would have just as much substance to them, which is approximately none. The fact is that everything Carol and Kerry told the LA Times is a lie, even if it’s factually true, which it’s not. The triumph of Laura Mecoy’s public relations work here is that she got the LA Times to listen and to respond in their editorial as if these were serious arguments by serious people, instead of orchestrated propaganda. It’s not news that that happens. It’s not often, though, that it’s possible to see it happening.
Image of Laura Mecoy is hosted elsewhere and deep-linked to here, obviating all copyright implications.