Tag Archives: Dan Halden

Kerry Morrison/Mitch O’Farrell Vampirical Folie À Deux Begins To Shrivel And Die On Exposure To Light As First Item In The Impending Flood Of Anti-Mitch’s-Playground-Initiative Sentiment Hits Council File In The Form Of Eagle Rock NC’s Unanimous Opposition

If the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council has its way, this park and its playgrounds will remain free and open to adults with or without children in tow.
If you’re following the story you will recall that this L.A. Times editorial kicked off a somewhat misguided firestorm of opposition to Mitch O’Farrell’s recent Council motion 16-1456 seeking to develop a legal tool for banning adults without children from playgrounds in parks in the City of Los Angeles. Of course, this motion turned out to be yet another salvo in the ongoing struggle between Kerry Morrison and all sane Angelenos for access to Selma Park, which she convinced her close personal friend and neighbor Eric Garcetti to illegally curtail because of her irrational fear that people might pass out sandwiches to homeless people in the Park once a week.

This is an old story, and a sad one. Here’s how it goes: Kerry Morrison whispers sweet nothings in the receptive ear of CD13 field deputy Dan Halden at one of their monthly breakfast meetings. Dan, who for some reason thinks Kerry and her minions are Mitch’s constituents, passes the whisper on to “his boss.”1 Mitch O’Farrell, no doubt contemplating the oodles and scads of money trickling down to him from the heavy-laden coffers of Ms. and Mr. Kerry Morrison, mutters to himself something like “That sounds good! No need to run that by anyone sane! Kerry Morrison and her money would never lead me astray!!”

But once in a while sane people are paying attention, and then all those reasons that seemed so compelling in the back room suddenly start to look a little — and then a whole freaking lot — crazy. This happens all the time.2 And it’s beginning to happen again with this whole playground thing. If you subscribe to the Council file , you will have been notified last night that the Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council voted unanimously to oppose Mitch and Kerry’s motion (full text after the break if you’re PDF-averse).

This is doubtless the first droplet in what we here at MK.Org predict will be a flood of opposition. Sadly, but also hilariously, the opposers don’t actually seem to understand the letter of the proposed law, although they clearly understand the spirit all too well indeed. So let’s settle back and watch the already-at-a-fever-pitch frustration of Mitch and his spokesdude Tony Arranaga grow and grow and grow, as they issue ever-more-tightly-wound explanations until they finally and quietly decide to cut their losses and let the motion die in committee. Stay tuned!
Continue reading Kerry Morrison/Mitch O’Farrell Vampirical Folie À Deux Begins To Shrivel And Die On Exposure To Light As First Item In The Impending Flood Of Anti-Mitch’s-Playground-Initiative Sentiment Hits Council File In The Form Of Eagle Rock NC’s Unanimous Opposition

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How The City Of Los Angeles Arranges For Itself To Be Lobbied By BIDs Even Though The City Attorney Requires Most City Contractors To Be Explicitly Forbidden From Lobbying The City By Means Of A Contract Clause

Kerry Morrison not thinking of herself as a lobbyist, even though she does lobby and the City of Los Angeles encourages her to lobby.
Kerry Morrison not thinking of herself as a lobbyist, even though she does lobby and the City of Los Angeles encourages her to lobby.
Issues surrounding business improvement districts and the Los Angeles Municipal Lobbying Ordinance have been fraught with controversy at least since 2009, when the Los Angeles Ethics Commission submitted a comprehensive report to City Council proposing a series of reforms to the law.

One minor part of their proposal would have clarified without altering the application of these laws to business improvement districts which then, as now, are almost certainly required to register as lobbyists, even though none of them do nor have they ever. This minor clause in a major reform proposal kicked off a whirlwind of mouth-slavvery craziness on the part of the BIDs, which ended with Eric Garcetti effectively killing the CEC’s proposal in 2010 for no good reason other than that Kerry Morrison giggled at him in a committee meeting.1

So it was with a great deal of interest that I read in this Power Point thing from 2012 that, according to Miranda Paster, who is in charge of the division of the Los Angeles City Clerk’s office which oversees BIDs, that she considers part of her duties under the heading of “Optimal Government/Taxpayer BID oversight” to be to “encourage BIDs to lobby council members.”2
Continue reading How The City Of Los Angeles Arranges For Itself To Be Lobbied By BIDs Even Though The City Attorney Requires Most City Contractors To Be Explicitly Forbidden From Lobbying The City By Means Of A Contract Clause

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Kerry Morrison’s Fallibility Exposed Publicly By Park La Brea News As Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition Move To Hollywood Salvation Army Is Finalized But She (Almost) Keeps Stiff Upper Lip. Mitch O’Farrell, On The Other Hand, Still Doesn’t Get This Whole “Free Country” Thing…

444px-salvation_army_world_war_i_posterAt least since February 2016, the Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition has been publicly discussing a move away from its long-time ground zero at Sycamore and Romaine. Of course, Ms. Kerry Morrison does not like this one bit and, in her rage,1 in May, went off in a tizzy crying to Salvation Army Board member Hank Hilty, whose family owns the Northeast corner of Third and Fairfax,2 and to the Salvation Army Southern California chief-directorate-for-something-or-another in Long Beach, saying something like “Hey fellow zillionaires! We don’t like this so can you please put a stop to it?”

And just watch her little speech on the matter from May. See how her affect just screams competence, omnipotence, every-kind-of-cence-but-common-sense? Well, according to the Park La Brea News, the Food Coalition’s move is a done deal and they will start serving meals there on January 1st. So much for Kerry Morrison’s back-channel-zillionaire-solidarity methodology. But does she just admit that she’s been trying to stop this development for almost a year now and has failed utterly? Nope! She’s quoted right in the article, speaking as if from her metaphorical dais, that imaginary place of calm, controlled, power. Also sprach die Königin von Hollywood:

“[The GWHFC and Salvation Army] don’t perceive it will be much of a net increase of people coming to Hollywood, but we will have to see. I don’t necessarily buy that,” Morrison said. “The concern is not about the meal program, it’s what happens before and afterwards. When you are embarking on a project like this that is not self-contained, it is going to have implications for the surrounding neighborhood. We definitely will be watching. We will be tracking to see if there is any increase [in homeless people coming to Hollywood]. If we are 60 days into it and there is no impact, then we are golden.”

The tacit assumption here is that anyone cares whether or not she is “golden.” In fact, if anyone at all cared, she would have been able to stop the whole thing in January, when she first started tracking it, or in May, when she first started whining about it in public. But she couldn’t, so why would she be able to now? She’s putting up a good front, but she’s putting up a front.

And that’s not all! Note how she says that ” We definitely will be watching. We will be tracking to see if there is any increase [in homeless people coming to Hollywood].” Well, she’s talking about the BID Patrol watching, obviously, and that presents an interesting legal problem for her. Also, recall that CD13 Councildude and Darth Four-Eyes Mitch O’Farrell has been trying to get the Food Coalition shut down since about 20 minutes after he took office in 2013. He has something silly to say about the whole thing too. Read on, friends, for details!
Continue reading Kerry Morrison’s Fallibility Exposed Publicly By Park La Brea News As Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition Move To Hollywood Salvation Army Is Finalized But She (Almost) Keeps Stiff Upper Lip. Mitch O’Farrell, On The Other Hand, Still Doesn’t Get This Whole “Free Country” Thing…

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Venice Beach BID Hearing Roundup: Bonin Jettisons Deference, Implicatively Slams Hollywood, Downtown BIDs: “There’ve Been Good BIDs And There’ve Been Bad BIDs” And Hollywood? And Downtown? Not Good BIDs. Wesson/Englander Totalitarian Style Almost Causes Third Do-Over

A battle-weary Mike Bonin graciously acknowledges his ultimate victory this afternoon at the Venice Beach BID hearing.
A battle-weary Mike Bonin graciously acknowledges his ultimate victory this afternoon at the Venice Beach BID hearing.
Quick summary: Venice Beach BID hearing in August was messed up due to habitual arrogance of City Council. Heroic civil rights lawyer calls bullshit. City Attorney sees potential liability for City and advises a do-over. A bunch of other shenanigans, too many to name-check at this point, ensue. This morning the do-over hearing was held. You can watch it here on YouTube.

So everyone made their comments, and they weren’t all that different from the first time, although Mike Bonin managed not to lose his shit and compare the BID opposition to Trump supporters.1 But nevertheless, there were a few surprising moments. Recall that the first hearing was invalidated because third-smartest-guy-in-the-room Herb Wesson cut off public comment too early. So this time, Mitch Englander, who is Council president pro tem,2 after all the speaker cards had been called, announced to the world at large:3

Mitch Englander on the dais getting whispered advice from a deputy city attorney.  What does it say about our City that almost 15% of our Councilmembers are named Mitch?  Nothing good, friends, nothing good.
Mitch Englander on the dais getting whispered advice from a deputy city attorney. What does it say about our City that almost 15% of our Councilmembers are named Mitch? Nothing good, friends, nothing good.


I wanna be extra careful on this one given the problems with the last public hearing. Is there anybody here who filled out a card or tried to speak or
[unintelligible] has not been heard yet?

And then the other one, Wesson or Englander, seeing that sanest of habitual gadflies, Eric Preven, indicating that he would like to speak, announced:

Ah, Mr. Preven, you actually spoke to the Council already for your maximum of three minutes per the Council rules.

And Preven said no. And everyone in the room wondered whether they were really going to take the risk of messing everything up for a second time just to prevent Eric Preven from speaking for one more minute after we’d all been there almost an hour already. Well, the Deputy City Attorney told the two prezzes to CTFO, and they folded, for Christ’s sake, and let Eric Preven speak.

But far more interesting than that was Bonin’s victory speech.4 In particular, maybe since he was feeling a little conciliatory, he said:
Continue reading Venice Beach BID Hearing Roundup: Bonin Jettisons Deference, Implicatively Slams Hollywood, Downtown BIDs: “There’ve Been Good BIDs And There’ve Been Bad BIDs” And Hollywood? And Downtown? Not Good BIDs. Wesson/Englander Totalitarian Style Almost Causes Third Do-Over

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New Documents: Halden and Taslagyan Schedules, Emails Galore, South Park BID Shenanigans, PATH Reports

2016_06_halden_schedule_detailThis is just a quick post to announce the availability of tons of new records (with more to come this weekend, I hope!) These are available both on Archive.Org and locally through the menu structure above or directly from our document storage.

There’s a list of the new stuff after the break.
Continue reading New Documents: Halden and Taslagyan Schedules, Emails Galore, South Park BID Shenanigans, PATH Reports

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The Homeless Industrial Complex: How CIM Group, Monica Yamada, Kerry Morrison, Steve Seyler, And Their Assorted Minions And Cronies Eat What They Kill In Hollywood And Beyond

Monica Yamada, president of the HPOA and principal of the organized criminal conspiracy known as the CIM Group, plotting with unindicted co-conspirators late last week.
Monica Yamada, president of the HPOA and principal of the organized criminal conspiracy known as the CIM Group, plotting with unindicted co-conspirators late last week.
This morning’s L.A. Times features an excellent story about how CIM Group defrauds its tenants in poverty-stricken but gentrifying areas of the City, telling them that they’re about to be evicted and offering them small amounts of money to sign releases. Of course, in Los Angeles, most low-cost rental units are covered by rent control laws which give these tenants significant protections which they don’t know about. CIM Group takes significant and soon-to-be-illegal advantage of this ignorance.

CIM Group is famous for its criminal behavior, which has shown no sign of slowing down.1 This latest revelation won’t surprise anyone who’s paying attention. And remember that gentrification creates homelessness, and evictions create homelessness. In short, CIM Group creates homelessness. Monica Yamada creates homelessness. And they make a lot of money by making people homeless.

But these homeless people don’t go to waste, no. Some of them end up in Hollywood, where they generate a great deal of economic activity. They don’t share in the wealth they create, but that’s no surprise. First, they end up as the the subject of arrests and other interventions by Steve Seyler and his cheerful gang of good-will ambassadors. Those boys2 earn $1.5 million per year dealing with these homeless people. No homeless people, no $1.5 million.
Continue reading The Homeless Industrial Complex: How CIM Group, Monica Yamada, Kerry Morrison, Steve Seyler, And Their Assorted Minions And Cronies Eat What They Kill In Hollywood And Beyond

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Crime Does Pay At City Hall: Anti-RV Resolution Introduced In Council This Morning At Behest of Media District BID Director Lisa Schechter, Acting in Apparent Violation of Her Post-Employment Lobbying Ban

RVs on Lillian Way between Santa Monica Blvd and Melrose Avenue
RVs on Lillian Way between Santa Monica Blvd and Melrose Avenue
This morning, CD13 Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell introduced a resolution seeking to impose restrictions on parking oversized vehicles in a semi-industrialized sliver of the Hollywood Media District BID located roughly between Cole Avenue and Vine Street west to east and Santa Monica Boulevard and Melrose Avenue north to south. There is a never-ending flow of these seemingly innocuous items in the agendas of our esteemed Council, but I just happen to know an awful lot about the backstory to this one, which is anything but innocuous, actually, and is the subject of today’s post.

The Media District BID is particularly attractive to people living in RVs because it’s industrialized, so no night-time neighbors to annoy, and it’s close to the center of Hollywood. Especially on Lillian Way and its cross streets, Romaine, Willoughby, and Waring, there has been a thriving but quiet community of RV-dwellers for years on end. But the Media District BID hates it. They just can’t deal with it. For instance, see this email chain from March 2015 where Hollywood cop Julie Nony discusses how to get rid of them with erstwhile Media District BID director Steven Whiddon and a bunch of overprivileged proprietors who don’t understand the concept of public space. But, probably not surprisingly, Steven Whiddon was unable to orchestrate any lasting action.

RVs on Lillian Way between Santa Monica Blvd and Melrose Avenue
RVs on Lillian Way between Santa Monica Blvd and Melrose Avenue

So enter Lisa Schechter, employed by erstwhile CD4 rep Tom LaBonge until June 30, 2015. Sometime between then and October 2015 she was hired by the Media District to replace the departed but unlamented Whiddon. Very soon after that, in fact on November 5, 2015, Schechter and current Media District Board President Laurie Goldman met with O’Farrell’s Hollywood Field Deputy, Daniel Halden. Dan was kind enough to supply me with a copy of his notes from that meeting, wherein (on the second page) one can read the portentous words: “Oversized vehicles Resolution — MAP.” There’s no question that this meeting between Halden, Goldman, and Schechter, is the genesis of the resolution introduced this morning by Mitch O’Farrell.
Continue reading Crime Does Pay At City Hall: Anti-RV Resolution Introduced In Council This Morning At Behest of Media District BID Director Lisa Schechter, Acting in Apparent Violation of Her Post-Employment Lobbying Ban

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Peter Zarcone and Kerry Morrison Conspire Not To Enforce CUP Conditions Against BID-Approved Venues for November 2015 BID-Sponsored Music Festival In Stark Hypocritical Contrast To Their Overzealous Hyperenforcement Against Minority-Serving Venues in Hollywood

A newly shaven Peter Zarcone in April 2015.
A newly shaven Peter Zarcone in April 2015 just as his joint vendetta with the BIDs against nightclubs in Hollywood took off.
Recall that in April 2015 the two HPOA BIDs, the LAPD, and the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce revealed an ongoing conspiracy to shut down minority-serving entertainment venues in Hollywood. Their favored technique for doing this is hyperenforcement of Conditional Use Permits (CUPs). These documents contain numerous restrictions on the operations of bars, restaurants, and so on. Violating these conditions while operating is actually a crime, and owners and employees of venues can be arrested for doing so. This actually happens, e.g. in the shameful case of the Rusty Mullet. Keep that in mind. The LAPD can physically arrest restaurant employees for violations of the CUP. It can also shut the venue down immediately if the CUP is being violated.

Now, in November 2015, eight months after the BID and Zarcone began targeting nightclubs and bars that they didn’t like,1 the Hollywood Property Owners Alliance sponsored a music festival centered around Cahuenga Boulevard between Hollywood and Selma, notably the most caucasian micro-neighborhood in Hollywood-nightlife-land. Thus, on September 9, 2015, Kerry Morrison wrote to LAPD and CD13:

This festival is intended to present a neighborhood “night-life” experience in Hollywood. We are trying to change the image of Hollywood by celebrating the authentic music and artistic options that are here. As such, the BID is “curating” over four days/nights dozens of different musical experiences, acts, pop-up art shows, comedy, etc — and inviting the public in to experience Hollywood as a walkable neighborhood. … The activity is largely going to be centered around Selma and Cahuenga — very little will happen on Hollywood Blvd.

By the way, this statement is full of dog whistles. Note the contrast between putatively authentic music and whatever kind of music they play on Hollywood Blvd. (hint: white:authentic :: ??:Hollywood Blvd. music) Note the scare quotes around “night-life,” and so on. But that’s not all:
Continue reading Peter Zarcone and Kerry Morrison Conspire Not To Enforce CUP Conditions Against BID-Approved Venues for November 2015 BID-Sponsored Music Festival In Stark Hypocritical Contrast To Their Overzealous Hyperenforcement Against Minority-Serving Venues in Hollywood

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Daniel Halden, Speaking On Behalf Of Mitch O’Farrell, Explains Why The Rusty Mullet Must Die

Dan Halden at the August 2015 HPOA All Property Owners Meeting.
CD13 Hollywood Field Deputy Dan Halden at the August 2015 HPOA All Property Owners Meeting.
(Hitherto we have sought to understand O’Farrell’s anti-nightclub campaign; the point, however, is to change it)

The other day we wrote about the Rusty Mullet conditional use permit revocation hearing, but didn’t get around to covering CD13 Hollywood Field Deputy Dan Halden’s testimony, which you can listen to here, and as always there’s a transcript after the break, and we’ll just take it line by line, also as always.

My name is Daniel Halden. H-A-L-D-E-N. Good afternoon, I guess. I was going to say good morning, but good afternoon. I serve Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell of the Thirteenth District. I’m his Hollywood Field Deputy, which is a position I’ve had since May 2014.

It is editorial policy here at MK.org to showcase anything true that our guests say. Unfortunately all too often that’s no more than their name, rank, and serial number.

It’s the top priority of the Councilman [unintelligible] to ensure public safety and a high quality of life, whether it’s in Hollywood or anywhere in the Thirteenth District.

Not really. In fact it is the top priority of the Councilman to hire private security forces who are not subject to democratic control so that they can physically attack homeless people who have not yet been targeted by one of his on-demand forcible encampment cleanups or attempts to deny them food and in the spare time left to him after these efforts, to destroy nightclubs in Hollywood solely because Kerry Morrison and Peter Zarcone are unable to tell the difference between groups of nonwhite people having fun and freaking civil insurrections or something. Anyway, that’s what the evidence shows is the top priority of the Councilman. We guess you could call that a high quality of life, but really, whose life?
Continue reading Daniel Halden, Speaking On Behalf Of Mitch O’Farrell, Explains Why The Rusty Mullet Must Die

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MK.Org Video Of Racist Diatribe At March 2015 SVBID Board Meeting Played At The Rusty Mullet CUP Revocation Hearing, Or How Fabio Conti Shot The BID In The Foot With His Big Fat Mouth — Also LAPD Vice Officer Benjamin Thompson (39467) Is A Shameless Liar — Guest Appearance By Dan Halden Of CD13

This photograph shows that Officer Benjamin Thompson (#39467) of the Hollywood Vice Squad is a mewling, puking liar.  Read on for details!
This photograph shows that Officer Benjamin Thompson (#39467) of the Hollywood Vice Squad is a mewling, puking liar. Read on for details!
A couple weeks ago we wrote about a Zoning Administrator hearing being held for the purpose of revoking the Rusty Mullet’s conditional use permit. Well, the hearing was held on July 28, 2016. As far as we know a determination has not yet been made, but we recently obtained more than five hours of audio from the hearing. You can listen to part I and also part II here. It’s not easy to get through the whole damned thing, which is why you’re lucky to have us! We’ve listened to the whole thing and made clips of some interesting bits. Note that as long as we were haunting City Hall to get this material we also obtained audio from the CUP revocation hearings for the Cosmo Nightclub and the Cashmere, and you can find both of those on this Archive.org page.

Now, long-time readers of this blog will recall that in March 2015 we broke the story that Fabio Conti, Carol Massie, Kerry Morrison, Marty Shelton, and pretty much everyone on the Board of Directors of the Sunset & Vine BID except for Chase Gordon are a bunch of racists who want to shut down every bar on Hollywood Boulevard because they don’t like the skin color of the patrons. So imagine our pleasure at learning that Mike Ayaz, the Rusty Mullet’s lawyer, actually showed our video at the hearing! This was part of the evidence for his position, with which we concur, that the restaurant appears on a hit list of bars being targeted for racist reasons by the BID, the LAPD, and the City Government. You can hear the whole clip here, where he refers to Fabio’s speech as “disturbing video which I would like to play of a quasi-governmental agency that basically…I think I’ll let the video speak for itself.” And speak for itself it does:

Fabio Conti, Kerry Morrison, and Carol Massie at a March 2016 meeting of the quasi-governmental agency responsible for the clandestine hit list targeting the Rusty Mullet.
Fabio Conti, Kerry Morrison, and Carol Massie at a March 2016 meeting of the quasi-governmental agency responsible for the clandestine hit list targeting the Rusty Mullet.

Be sure to catch the audience reaction at the end. It doesn’t make anyone sane happy to hear Fabio Conti channeling Marty Shelton claiming that “the Lindsey Lohans of the world are not hanging out at the Rusty Mullet” with the regulars, who are “decidedly minority, brown and black, and my guess, from a lower economic strata.” These dimwits on the BID are clearly going to regret the day they neglected to listen to their one and only sane Board Member, Chase Gordon, who responded to this bullshit in March 2015 by saying that he didn’t “think that we should be, especially public-facing, going out with the distinction of ‘we don’t want lower economic statuses coming and visiting Hollywood.” Anyway, who can say what will happen, but we here at MK.org are inordinately proud on this beautiful Sunday morning that the citizen journalism of our intrepid correspondent is paying off in this big way. This story is a sleeper, but when it finally makes the papers, it’s going to be huge.

Turn the page for some other interesting bits!
Continue reading MK.Org Video Of Racist Diatribe At March 2015 SVBID Board Meeting Played At The Rusty Mullet CUP Revocation Hearing, Or How Fabio Conti Shot The BID In The Foot With His Big Fat Mouth — Also LAPD Vice Officer Benjamin Thompson (39467) Is A Shameless Liar — Guest Appearance By Dan Halden Of CD13

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