One Year Later: Which Way Occupy LA?

occupy la

Dan Bluemel: There is no manual for activists on how to save the world. The best anyone can do is learn from the past, try new things and see if they work, while the world will carp at them for it — supporters and critics alike.

New York City Has Homeless Emergency

new york homeless

Charley James: New York’s homelessness crisis erupted because the Bloomberg administration recently ended rent subsidies, which allowed many people who are now homeless to stay in their apartments.

Can LA’s Neighborhood Councils Keep Up?

neighborhood council

Stephen Box: Yes, if the City Council is willing to partner with Neighborhood Councils in communication, organization, and respect.

Are LA’s Neighborhood Council Elections Worth the Price?

neighborhood council elections

Stephen Box: Neighborhood Council elections matter most to City Hall because, without them, City Hall’s commitment to involving the people in an open and participatory government is broken.

Los Angeles City Hall: Everybody’s Talking, Nobody’s Listening

casino la city hall

Stephen Box: Veterans of the bureaucratic jungle typically develop tracker instincts that allow them to monitor the subtle signs of City Hall activity and stay informed of impending actions on behalf of the people.

Let My People Vote!

let my people vote

Stephen Box: LA’s City Council voted unanimously to authorize and direct the Department of Neighborhood Empowerment to conduct Neighborhood Council board member elections on a temporary basis during the 2012 Neighborhood Council Election cycle.

Lies and Cover-up Only Part of LA’s Firegate Scandal

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Stephen Box: LA’s Fire Department has been turned upside down and placed in the hot seat, not for the actions of its rank and file, but for the creative accounting habits of its leadership.

LA ‘s Mayor Race: Campaign in Search of a Front-Runner

los angeles city hall

Stephen Box: Eight of the twelve registered candidates for Mayor of LA participated in a candidate forum at the Holman United Methodist Church, giving powerful testimony to the claim of some that politics is theatre.

Wendy Greuel Charms Audience, Eludes Questions

wendy-greuel

Stephen Box: Greuel navigated the hot topics of land use and urban design without hitting any potholes or committing to any controversial positions on topics that ranged from Farmers Field to affordable housing to corruption within City Hall.

Livestreaming: Telling the Truth About Occupy in Real Time

occupy la lapd standoff

Tina Dupuy: Livestreamers now feel they’re holding the torch for truth but also nonviolence as a way to build a broad coalition movement. This means they get attacked online and threatened as part of their vocation. You know, just like real journalists.

“Mr. Brown” Takes His Act to City Hall

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Stephen Box: It has been 59 years since the Ralph M. Brown Act was passed by the California State Legislature and it guarantees the public’s right to attend and participate in meetings of local legislative bodies.

LA’s Redistricting War and the Health of Our Democracy

Madeline Janis: I wanted to see working people, middle-class and especially poor people down at the “ropes,” pulling council members and their staff aside and talking about how things should be done. I wanted the “people” to learn how to own the place.

No One In Los Angeles Ever Takes the Blame

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Stephen Box: General Managers, also appointed by the Mayor, find themselves caught between a term-limit restricted Mayor and a Civil Service hard place. Critics claim that they often serve as simple cannon fodder and Mayoral expeditors.

LA City Hall: The Great Pabulum and Placebo Dispenser

los angeles city hall

Stephen Box: From medical marijuana to fast food to code harassment, LA is the Capital of Moratoriums, demonstrating that there is nothing as attractive as the opportunity to kick an issue down the road and to leave it for the next round of elected officials.

Dealing with City of LA: Get It in Writing

parking ticket

Stephen Box: The City of LA is fast to find fault with its residents and slow to accept responsibility for its mistakes, a pattern that is demonstrated by its reluctance to put things in writing when it puts the City of LA in an unfavorable position.

Support Sustainability Bill of Rights for Santa Monica

bike poster

Santa Monica has worked hard to protect the natural ecosystems that make life possible. It is time for these sustainability goals to be legal, enforceable obligations and not just voluntary intentions.

Occupy LA Arrestees Need Support

On November 30, 2011, 292 peaceful people were arrested during the Los Angeles Police Department’s raid on Occupy Los Angeles’ encampment at City Hall. This week and next, many of these peaceful people will be in court and they need your support.

Occupy War! Stay After the Rose Parade to Hear Cindy Sheehan Speak!

cindy sheehan

Steve Fine: While the Occupy Movement has been busy targeting the dominance and corruption of the 1% on the domestic side, it has inadvertently given those same people a massive free pass on the foreign policy side. This needs to change.

The Fix Is In: A Tale of Two Bans

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Stephen Box: As community activists continue to fight for a ban on city park advertising, the Mayor is pursuing an overhaul of LA’s sign ordinance that will create “innovative revenue sources” such as wilderness advertising.

LA’s Scandalous Housing Authority: For Better or For Worse

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Stephen Box: The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) is the latest department to fall victim to the oversight and accountability scrum that starts when the media shines a spotlight and concludes when the public gets bored.

Occupy LA: A Salt Lick for Bullies

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Stephen Box: The bullies embedded within the LAPD found freedom to exercise their demons, to act on the rage they felt when they were denied the opportunity to unleash their skills on a violent enemy.

Occupy LA Backed Corporate Personhood Resolution as Eviction Loomed

corporations not people

Michael R. Evans: On the night that Occupy Los Angeles protesters were given as a deadline to begin vacating the land around City Hall, their general assembly unanimously passed a resolution to end corporate personhood through constitutional amendment

Occupy LA: The Death of Mainstream Media

occupy la media tent

Stephen Box: As the LAPD shed its hard core reputation and as the Occupy LA movement held to its nonviolent principles, it was the media who caved in and who were left behind as casualties on the battlefield.

LA’s Offer to Its Occupiers

occupy la

Paulina Gonzalez: What if Occupy locked arms with community groups and announced its refusal to move unless the city extends and agrees to enforce the moratorium on the eviction of tenants in bank-controlled foreclosed properties?

Occupy’s Woman Problem

Elise Whitaker

Tina Dupuy: Women may be the 51%, but the Occupy camps and General Assemblies look as gender-imbalanced as Congress

Occupy LA: Time to Get Off the Lawn?

occupy la ginger liu

Stephen Box: It’s time that we stop looking to the tents at City Hall Park and instead look inside City Hall and ask the Mayor and the City Council the tough questions, “Where is the leadership and what is the plan?”

Los Angeles Occupy Encampment Still Stands

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Sharon Kyle: Occupy encampments across the country have had bad encounters with police. Many Occupy encampments are being cleared out. But so far, Occupy LA stands – for now.

Occupy LA: Writing on the Wall

occupy la fuse

Stephen Box: Occupy LA is slowly discovering that City Hall’s welcome mat has disappeared, that the Mayor’s gift of ponchos during the first rainstorm was more of a bon voyage gift than a welcome.

Maybe They Should Occupy LA’s Neighborhood Councils

Occupy LA

Stephen Box: Occupy LA has faced one of the most potent of enemies, an ambivalent audience, one that is most likely to respond with a tired dismissal based on aesthetics or a weary look of disbelief as issues such as unemployment, foreclosures, homelessness, collapsing infrastructure and a collapsing economy are presented as a call to action.

Occupy LA’s Greatest Opportunity: The Polls

occupy la

Stephen Box: Occupy LA’s greatest opportunity to impact the policies and actions that are responsible for eviscerating the middle class, for destroying our economy, for unleashing predatory greed and for selling political access to the highest bidder is to mobilize voters at the polls on election day.

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