Tag Archives: Godwin’s Law

Chaos at Council Hearing on Venice Beach BID: In Response to Heckling, Bonin Accuses Venice Beach BID Detractors Of “Malignant Dangerous Defamation,” Compares Them To Trump

Mike Bonin speaking in favor of the Venice Beach BID in Council on August 23, 2016.  He's either misinformed, lying, or both.
Mike Bonin speaking in favor of the Venice Beach BID in Council on August 23, 2016, mere minutes before accusing BID detractors of “malignant dangerous defamation.”
Yesterday the Los Angeles City Council heard protests against the proposed Venice Beach Business Improvement District. You can watch the whole thing here. There were impassioned public comments and a lot of heckling. Also, on Monday Laura McLennan of CD11 gave me over a hundred pages of material on the VBBID, which is worth looking at. After the public comment, Mike Bonin gave a speech about why he supported the BID, which is my topic for today. You can jump directly to Bonin’s remarks in the video and as always, you can find a transcription at the end of the post. I’m just going to address a few of Bonin’s comments in detail:

Let me for a second or two correct some of the wide misperceptions about the BID and what process… the process for establishing a BID is established by state law.
Continue reading Chaos at Council Hearing on Venice Beach BID: In Response to Heckling, Bonin Accuses Venice Beach BID Detractors Of “Malignant Dangerous Defamation,” Compares Them To Trump

Why We Think it is Fitting to Compare BIDs to Nazis

An essential book for understanding what it felt like to be a Nazi before everyone hated the Nazis.  Click on image for detailed information.
An essential book for understanding what it felt like to be a Nazi before everyone hated the Nazis. Click on image for detailed information.
This blog has two essential purposes: first, to publish public records obtained from the three Hollywood area BIDs we cover and their collaborators and second, to needle employees and supporters of those BIDs. Neither educating nor convincing anyone of anything are huge priorities of ours, and even the public revelation of our two purposes cuts against the grain somewhat. However, it’s recently come to our attention that some of our readers who, so to speak, come upon our work innocently, not involved with the BIDs but just having a general interest in the political life of Los Angeles, may consider our constant comparisons of BIDs with Nazis to be glib, puerile, shallow, offensive, trivializing, and/or so on. Some of the objections expressed have come to seem, after much consideration, to have merit and to deserve a serious response.
The Olympic Games were held in Berlin in 1936, three years after the Nazis came to power.  Adolf Hitler, still seen by the world as a plausible member of the international community, led the opening ceremony.
The Olympic Games were held in Berlin in 1936, three years after the Nazis came to power (and, coincidentally, four years after they were held in Los Angeles for the first time). Adolf Hitler, still seen by the world as a plausible member of the international community, led the opening ceremony.

To understand our position, it’s essential to imagine what it felt like to inhabit the Third Reich as a non-Jew in the early 1930s, before Nazism was a universal symbol of pure and essential evil. Germany wasn’t yet an international outcast, and non-Jewish Germans, for the most part, didn’t feel like a nation of demons. In many ways they were not. Concentration camps, now considered primarily sites of genocide, were opened by the Nazis in March 1933 immediately after their accession to power. At first they were used for holding political prisoners and criminals and people were actually released from them on occasion. There’s also no particular reason to think that the Nazi government had any concrete plans to exterminate Jews from the earth when they took power in 1933.
Continue reading Why We Think it is Fitting to Compare BIDs to Nazis

Kerry Morrison in Van Nuys: Where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison / Where the executioner’s face is always well hidden1

Tailgunner Kerry Morrison giving a performative demonstration of effective methods for keeping public meetings respectful, civil, and orderly.
As you probably know, the city of Los Angeles has been holding public hearings to gather input on possible frameworks for legalizing street vending. We’ve written before about the May 28 meeting in Boyle heights: once, twice, and thrice. Now, at last, we take up the June 11 meeting in Van Nuys. We’re starting things off with our old friend, Ms. Kerry Morrison. You can listen to her statement here or read a transcription after the break. We’ve also written about Kerry’s description of the meetings at the Joint Security Committee in July:

there were a series of four hearings that the chief administrative office staff held on the… the sidewalk vending ordinance. … It’s just this kind of amorphous set of hearings, which were completely dysfunctional, disrespectful, and almost, um, resembled a circus.

In the same meeting, Kerry explained that she wasn’t putting up with this, not for a second, and told everyone what she’d done about it:

So actually, Carol Schatz and I wrote a letter to Herb Wesson, the president of the city council after that meeting saying this is, this is really not being, you know, well-handled, there’s no security, it’s intimidating to people, there are people who did not want to testify. So the subsequent two hearings were, um, maybe a little bit more well-behaved.

As Ronald Reagan said in 1970, "If it takes a bloodbath to silence the demonstrators let's get it over with."   The lyrics are cruder than Kerry Morrison's,  but the tune's the same.1
As Ronald Reagan said in 1970, “If it takes a bloodbath to silence the demonstrators let’s get it over with.”
The lyrics are cruder than Kerry Morrison’s, but the tune’s the same.2

Well, we put our fearless correspondent on the case and he went out and got us a copy of this letter. As is usual with Kerry when she’s writing in this genre, outraged-with-veneer-of-politesse-and-diplomacy white supremacism, the letter manages to combine utterly competent, even stylish, syntax with semantics that wouldn’t have been out of place in a 1970-era Ronald Reagan psychotic fever dream about students running wild in the streets of Berkeley. Read on for details and more!
Continue reading Kerry Morrison in Van Nuys: Where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison / Where the executioner’s face is always well hidden1

Ever-Delusional BID’s Targeting of Homeless Alcohol Use, Impunitizing Scofflaw Liquor Dealers, Denial of Laws of Nature, Continues, with Complicity, Connivance of City Attorney’s Office, Apace

Pla-Boy Liquors at the corner of Yucca Street and Wilcox Avenue, as it appeared on July 30, 2015.
Pla-Boy Liquors at the corner of Yucca Street and Wilcox Avenue, as it appeared on July 30, 2015. On that date, 200 ml bottles of Crystal Palace vodka were on sale for $2.43, which is 22¢ cheaper than in 2014 according to Kerry Morrison.

Today’s post concerns a series of emails between Kerry Morrison and two Hollywood Neighborhood Prosecutors in 2014. These are part of a larger set of emails which we published some time ago. The BID, of course, is paranoiacally hyperphobic about drinking in public by the homeless, even as they celebrate, revel in, and sing hosanna in the highest to the use, misuse, abuse, of alcohol, even in public, when done by the non-homeless population of Hollywood. That’s not news. What is news is the weirdly obsessive length that newly-appointed-in-2014 Hollywood Neighborhood Prosecutor Jackie Lawson turned out to be willing to go to to accomodate Kerry Morrison’s paranoid hyperphobias. There’s a lot of background here, so please bear with us.
Andre Quintero, who preceded Jackie Lawson as the Hollywood Neighborhood Prosecutor and is now, amongst other things, the mayor of El Monte.  Either he's not so prone to BID-bootlicking as his successor or he has the sense not to do it in writing.
Andre Quintero, who preceded Jackie Lawson as the Hollywood Neighborhood Prosecutor and is now, amongst other things, the mayor of El Monte. Either he’s not so prone to BID-bootlicking and dereliction of duty as is his successor or else he has the sense not to do it in writing. He’s that’s-for-damn-sure not popular with his city council out there in the Far East, though.

The documented part of our story begins on January 28, 2014,1 with an email from Kerry Morrison to then-Hollywood-Neighborhood-Prosecutor Andre Quintero, inviting him to a BID-sponsored summit meeting the purported motive for which was “[t]o reduce the incidence of daytime public drunkenness in the Hollywood Entertainment Disctrict and Sunset & Vine BID.” In particular, Kerry calls Andre’s attention to item 4, asking that he “maybe … could be prepared to share some background on” “…laws governing alcohol sales and alcohol use.” Note well that there’s no word out of Andre regarding any of this. And the rest of the agenda is worth reading, but there’s nothing there, really, beyond the usual paranoid ravings about panhandlers and public inebriation with which we’re so familiar.

Things began to take an interesting turn in March, though. That’s when Kerry Morrison, unconstrained by any Institutional Review Board, by any ethical guidelines for the use of human subjects, by any standards, professional or amateur, by any method, scientific or humane, by any laws, human or divine, written or unwritten, criminal or civil, announced yet another experiment in the social-laboratory-for-the-criminalization-of-homelessness gestalt-slash-weltanschauung that the HPOA has overlain upon our beloved Hollywood in its 20 years of madcap malcriado misrule.2
Continue reading Ever-Delusional BID’s Targeting of Homeless Alcohol Use, Impunitizing Scofflaw Liquor Dealers, Denial of Laws of Nature, Continues, with Complicity, Connivance of City Attorney’s Office, Apace

Kerry Morrison Announces De Facto Semi-Denazification of BID Anti-Panhandling Project; Hollywood Not to be Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace After All

HPOA agents on Hollywood Blvd polishing their public image.  They're not fooling US, though...
HPOA agents on Hollywood Blvd polishing their public image. They’re not fooling US, though…
Long-time readers of this blog will recall the two HPOA BIDs’ obsessive crusade to end the human-to-human sharing of money on the streets of Hollywood, thereby decreasing the probability that our saviour will arrive soon. One aspect of this campaign, previously pushed quite vigorously by the BIDs, is the satanic contraptions known as “donation stations,” which are some kind of weirdo parking-meter-esque devices that tourists are supposed to put money in instead of handing it to homeless people. This kind of corporatization of the loving human act of sharing money is, of course, characteristic of Nazi thought and its wannabe adherents throughout history. Well, at today’s Joint Security Committee meeting, HPOA head Honcho-ette Kerry Morrison announced the suspension (or “parking,” to use the same abhorrent managerialism used by the author of the document in question) of the donation station project.
Continue reading Kerry Morrison Announces De Facto Semi-Denazification of BID Anti-Panhandling Project; Hollywood Not to be Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace After All

Valentine’s Day Poetry Slam Special!

Roses are red Violets are blue Scansion's important And using an appropriate number of syllables per line so you don't sound like a doofus is too!
Roses are red
Violets are blue
Scansion’s important
And using an appropriate number of syllables per line and some semblance of competent syntax so you don’t sound like a total doofus is too!
We’ve written at some length about Übersicherheitführer Steve Seyler‘s unfortunate penchant for poetry. Today, in honor of this, the most poetic of American holidays, we’re highlighting an email exchange from the archives between Seyler and “Good News Joe” Mariani, showing that Richard Dawkins’s notion that cultural practices spread like deadly infectious agents must be taken seriously by serious people.
We'll be damned if we can figure out what this is.  Some trash on the street?  Anyway, this is to Joe and Steve as Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning were to one another. Rhyme on!
We’ll be damned if we can figure out what this is. Some trash on the street? Anyway, this is to Joe and Steve as Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning were to one another. Rhyme on!

For reasons that we can’t determine from the evidence at hand but in response to the unintelligible photo at left, Good News Joe sent Stevie the following billet-doux:

Steve works so hard
Whether he is near or far
I wish he could go to a lake
Or maybe a Vegas escape

Lack of metrical structure? Check. Unintentional partial rhymes? Check. Unthinking use of brain-dead advertising-slogan phraseology as if it were human language? Check. Complete and utter tin-ear-itude? Check, check, check. He’s learned well from his master, whose classic response may be seen after the break.
Continue reading Valentine’s Day Poetry Slam Special!

Sarah Besley, Urban Planning, Freeway Overpasses, Moral Panics, Confirmation Bias, Idées Fixes, and Sitcom Nazis in Hollywood

Pollyanna and her cynical, unhappy mirror self encouraging their own cognitive bias by gazing into reflections rather than the world around them
Pollyanna and her cynical mirror image encouraging their own cognitive biases by gazing only at reflections rather than seeing the actual world around them
Pollyanna, the most famous optimist in American literature, is known and celebrated as the originator and primary evangelist of “the just being glad game.” Listen, O citizens of Hollywood, as she explains it to Nancy:1

“Why, it’s a game. Father told it to me, and it’s lovely. We’ve played it always, ever since I was a little, little girl…the game was just to find something about everything to be glad about—no matter what ’twas.”2

Now, Pollyanna gets a bad rap these days, but she’s our hero, really. We haven’t the space to defend her, though, because we have to analyze a May 2014 blog post by Sarah Besley, evidently the Associate Executive Directrix of the Hollywood Property Owners Association and stuff.

Check it! Sarah Besley is scared of freeway overpasses:

In Los Feliz, even the goddamned overpasses are cute, cute, cute!
In Los Feliz, even the goddamned overpasses are cute, cute, cute!

[An overpass] may be one of the worst statements EVER to anyone who visits and certainly to anyone who lives in or around it – especially if their community has been severed in half. An overpass literally says: this community favors cars over people and I dare you to walk underneath me and emerge on the other side alive. This is the message I’ve been getting for the past couple years as I commute from Los Feliz, along Franklin Avenue, down Argyle…3

But wait! Maybe Los Felizites are scared of freeway overpasses because they don’t have any there?4 The terror of the unknown is formidable and possibly overwhelms slurbians when they come to the big town.5 Hollywoodies, living in raw urban splendor in the very heart of the city, surely just take them in stride, don’t they? The answer would appear to be yes, even on Sarah Besley’s testimony:

I’ve started noticing the unexpected number of pedestrians walking from the hills north of Franklin into downtown Hollywood with their yoga mats, shopping bags, or strollers in tow. I’m struck by the fact that people seem to walk so confidently underneath what seems to me like a very scary place.
Continue reading Sarah Besley, Urban Planning, Freeway Overpasses, Moral Panics, Confirmation Bias, Idées Fixes, and Sitcom Nazis in Hollywood

A Short History of Dehumanization Through Defecation

Everyone Poops, but some poopers are more privileged than others.
Everyone Poops, but some poopers are more privileged than others.
Human shit has a number of remarkable properties. First of all, every human produces shit. Secondly, every fully autonomous human handles the disposal of their own shit. In fact, properly disposing of one’s own shit is a necessary condition for being considered a fully autonomous human being. Thus it is possible to efficiently and completely dehumanize people by preventing them from dealing competently with their shit.

Polish authorities in 1947 explaining to Rudolph H&oumlaut;ss, erstwhile commandant of Auschwitz, that it's not OK to force people to live in their own shit in order to facilitate genocide
Polish authorities in 1947 explaining to Rudolph Höss, erstwhile commandant of Auschwitz, that it’s not OK to force people to live in their own shit in order to facilitate genocide
This principle was grasped early on by the National Socialist founders of the infamous complex of concentration camps known collectively as Auschwitz,1 where the subhuman (Jews, Russians, etc.) inmates were allotted only 0.2 square feet of toilet space, less than one twelfth the amount allocated for ordinary criminal prisoners. Historian Robert-Jan Van Pelt summarizes the view of historian Terrence Des Pres that design choices like this, which resulted in every surface in the camps including human flesh, being covered with shit, were “the result of a deliberate policy to destroy the last vestiges of the prisoners’ sense of self-worth. It was not enough just to kill the prisoners. They had to be totally broken first.2 As Van Pelt summarizes, “with the latrines submerged in excrement, with very little water to be had at very few points, and with mud all around, what remained was an inmate population without the means to preserve any outward sign of human dignity.”2

It’s not discussed in the article we’re citing, but it’s surely plausible that such degradation made it easier for the SS to go about their unholy work of genocide. No matter how cruel the project, the guards carrying it out were still human beings, and is it not easier to send millions of people to their deaths if they’re smeared with their own shit and therefore, at least in that one sense, not fully human? Or to move them away from their native land so that you and your totalitarian buddies can move in? This principle has been rediscovered throughout history by those who have need of such a tool.

Steve Seyler, thinking deep thoughts about deep shit and who ultimately ends up in it
Steve Seyler, thinking deep thoughts about deep shit and who ultimately ends up in it

Which brings us back around to Steve Seyler, bully boy bossman of the BID security patrols and Reinhard Heydrich of the HPOA’s campaign to ethnically cleanse Hollywood of its homeless untermenschen.
Continue reading A Short History of Dehumanization Through Defecation

So-Called “Donation Stations” in Hollywood and Aktion Arbeitsscheu Reich: A Curious Instance of Convergent Evolution

It's hard to tell the cactus from the euphorbia, isn't it?  Just like it's hard to tell the BID patrol from the gestapo.  Hint: one is an armed gang of thugs, brutally enforcing the racist policies of their masters against the most helpless members of society and the other is a bunch of Nazis.
Convergent evolution: It’s hard to tell the cactus from the euphorbia, isn’t it?8 Just like it’s hard to tell the BID patrol from the Gestapo. Hint: one is an armed gang of thugs, brutally enforcing the racist policies of their masters against the most helpless members of society. The other is a Nazi organization.
Convergent evolution occurs in biological species when two types of organism occupy similar niches, are subject to similar selection pressures, have to solve the same sorts of problems in order to succeed in the tasks that their environments set for them,1 and so on. Thus when two organisms have evolved similar survival tactics, it’s reasonable to draw the conclusion that they’re trying to solve similar problems in the world, that they play a similar role in the grand scheme of being.2
It's also hard to tell the HPOA device from the Nazi one.  Read on for details!
More convergent evolution: It’s also hard to tell the HPOA device from the Nazi one, for about the same reason. Hint: One is a vicious tool of oppression used by quasi-privatized gangs of thugs as an essential tool in their politico-corporate masters’ program of social cleansing. The other is a milk-can with a swastika painted on it. Read on for details!

And it’s an undeniable fact that Kerry Morrison and the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance are, against the express will of Jesus Christ, obsessed with discouraging people from giving money to panhandlers directly. Just the briefest glance at any of their newsletters will convince you of this. In particular, see page 7 of the Summer 2014 issue, in which Kerry Morrison asks herself and, by extension, you, the reader, if she should give money to panhandlers (SPOILER: no!). Kerry gives no real reasons at all here or anywhere, so far as we can see.
Clip from the Summer 2014 HPOA Newsletter explaining how to use machines to thwart the will of Jesus.
Clip from the Summer 2014 HPOA Newsletter explaining how to use technology to thwart the will of Jesus.

Admittedly she gives what seem like reasons at first glance, e.g. she asserts that the homeless will spend the money on alcohol and then get arrested by the BID patrol for drinking it in public, but there’s no explanatory force here. Kerry’s the Executive Directrix of the HPOA and thus the big boss of the BID patrol. She is a woman under authority, with soldiers under her; and she says to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes.3 If she doesn’t want people getting arrested for drinking in public, all she’s gotta do is tell her gunmen to stop arresting them. There’s no need to propagandize against giving money to the poor if the goal is merely to arrest fewer people.

And it doesn’t stop with propaganda, either. There are actual machines involved. See, e.g., page 5 of the Summer 2014 HPOA Newsletter, in which Kerry promotes machines that people can put money into instead of handing it personally to panhandlers. This, says she, is “a positive option for passersby to contribute change to help people.” These machines cost $2500 a pop and they’re looking at getting 12 of them. That comes to $30,000 altogether, which is actually about 2% of the HPOA’s annual security budget. There’s some serious purpose at work or the HPOA wouldn’t be willing to spend such an outrageous amount of money,7 but we’ll be damned if we can see what it is. Fortunately, we have an analytic tool that will let us understand everything and then explain it to you!
Continue reading So-Called “Donation Stations” in Hollywood and Aktion Arbeitsscheu Reich: A Curious Instance of Convergent Evolution

Somebody at HPOA Is at Least as Good at Public Relations as Heinrich Himmler

Odilo Globocnik, a guy who was very proud of his work and prone to boast about it in public although not, so far as we know, in poetry.  Globus, as his SS buddies called him, had to be told by his boss Heinrich Himmler to shush up because his antics were interfering with the mission.
Odilo Globocnik, “the vilest individual in the vilest organization ever known,”1 master architect of mass murder and a guy who was very proud of his work, enough so to boast about it in public although not, so far as we know, in poetry. Globus, as his SS buddies called him, had to be told by his boss Heinrich Himmler to shush up because his antics were interfering with the mission.
Odilo Globocnik first came to the attention of SS bossman Heinrich Himmler because of his relentless antisemitism and his willingness to murder the Jews of Vienna on a freelance basis even before such practices were sanctioned by German law. Consequently, in 1939 Himmler promoted Globocnik and moved him to occupied Poland. In 1941 Himmler directed Globocnik to oversee one of the most enormous instances of genocide in the history of the world: Aktion Reinhardt.

This was a big step up for Globus, as Odilo was affectionately known to his buddies in the Schutzstaffel, “the vilest organization ever known.”1 In localized modern terms, it’s like being moved from the suburban backwater of Inglewood to the big-time bright-lights-big-city cosmopolis of Hollywood! Globus took to his new surroundings like Samson to the Philistines, and, by late 1943 when he wound up operations, more than 2,000,000 Jews were dead. The organizational aspects of this accomplishment were overwhelmingly intricate, so Globus felt understandably proud of his masterful work and wanted to crow about it.

STOP digging any more mass graves and clear up the old ones.  Any form of publicity will be harmful.  AND STOP WRITING POETRY, FOR CHRIST'S SAKE!!!
STOP digging any more mass graves and clear up the old ones. Any form of publicity will be harmful. AND STOP WRITING POETRY, FOR CHRIST’S SAKE!!!
However, Heinrich Himmler, Reichsführer of the SS and Globocnik’s boss, had begun to notice that the rest of the world, and even a significant number of German citizens, weren’t too happy about the systematic deportation and gassing of human beings on this scale. As historian Bettina Stangneth has it:

The Nazis might have kept telling themselves that the extermination of the Jews was the only means for their survival, but they lacked sufficient faith in this view to share it with the rest of the world. The Nazi police state was born of the fear that not even its own population would understand its campaign of murder. Himmler guessed early on that this “glorious chapter of our history” could never be written, and he prevented Odilo Globocnik from sinking a memorial plaque into the earth for the heroes of Operation Reinhard…In summer 1942 [Himmler] ordered his commanders to find a way to avoid digging any more mass graves and to clear up the old ones. Any form of publicity would be harmful.2

Meanwhile, back on the home front, on December 11, 2014, the Joint Security Committee of the Hollywood Entertainment District BID and the Sunset-Vine BID held its monthly meeting.
Continue reading Somebody at HPOA Is at Least as Good at Public Relations as Heinrich Himmler