LA’s City Hall: Mired in the Moment … Missing a Vision for the Future

los angeles city council

The City of LA’s ongoing budget crisis has allowed a triage mentality to permeate throughout City Hall, framing the ongoing debate over our future in the negative and conditioning the public to focus on what they can give up rather than what they want. Each year the Mayor’s office gathers with neighborhood council representatives to […]

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.

Transgender, Victimized and Black

ali forney

Rev. Irene Monroe: It’s not easy for any person of African descent to be LGBTQ in our black communities, but our transgender brothers and sisters might feel the most discrimination.

The Troops and Occupy Wall Street

scott olsen

Tina Dupuy: Meet the new face of Occupy Wall Street: Scott Olsen, a 24-year-old Marine and Iraq War vet who was shot in the head with a “non-lethal round” during a raid on Occupy Oakland last week.

Massachusetts’ Throw-Away Kids

homeless-wide

Rev. Irene Monroe: Homelessness among heterosexual students came in at 3.2 percent. This rate increased to 15 percent among bisexual students, and 25 percent among lesbian/gay students.

ACLU Lawsuit Over Homeless Veterans Exposes VA Scandal

mark rosenbaum

Jeff Norman: There has to be some reason – and probably not a good one – that the VA has been making secret land use deals with private enterprises.

From Casey Anthony to Wall Street: Crime Pays

casey-anthony-wide

Brent Budowsky: One of the great sources of outrage in our age is that again and again, crime pays. The victims, from young girls who die while vermin eat their corpse to embezzled investors who lose their money, from tortured prisoners to jobless workers to homeless victims of mortgage fraud, pay the price.

Help End Chronic Homelessness in Glendale

glendale registry week

Common Ground’s 100,000 Homes Campaign is planning a weeklong effort to identify and help persons who are homeless obtain and sustain permanent housing.

General Shinseki Has a Dream

General Shinseki

Brent Bukowsky: Let’s begin a JFK moon-shot program to end homelessness among American veterans within five years, and end homelessness of any American within 10 years.

Remember Our Homeless Gay Youth This Holiday

homeless gay youth

Rev. Irene Monroe: many of our LGBTQ youth, myself included as once a homeless youth, do not really have a home to go to where they can sit at the family table and be fully out — or if out, fully accepted.

Wage Theft: Thou Shalt Not Steal From Your Workers

expendables

David Love: Scrooge arrived just in time for the holidays, with Social Darwinism, bootstraps, slashing and cutting as a prescription for all our woes.

Why Poverty Spreads Across America

Camden, New Jersey, street scene.

Sherwood Ross: Pockets of poverty, like the sores of some malignant disease, are spreading across America, as its states and cities go broke and bankrupt.

I’m a Daddy and I’m Homeless

lukcy clover motel

Jasmyne Cannick: Most people don’t end up homeless by choice. Homelessness is usually the result of a series of unfortunate events.

Of Course Poverty Is On the Rise In Charles Dickens’ America

poverty

David Love: That anyone can actually utter the words “the recession is over” at a time of mass unemployment, foreclosures, homelessness and general despair tells you all you need to know about America. The nation actually exists as two nations: the few that have, and the many who don’t.

As Progressives Predicted, Clinton Welfare Reform Law Fails Families

Randy Shaw: After President Bill Clinton signed legislation in 1996 “ending welfare as we know it,” many highlighted this “common sense” solution and criticized progressives for opposing the bill. Soon after passage, politicians and the media said it had not caused the downsides that activists had predicted, ignoring that the law had not been fully implemented. But troubling reports soon emerged.

Hollywood’s Fix for America’s Three and a Half Trillion-Dollar Lobbying Addiction

nomiki konst

Nomiki Konst: The United States of America has a dirty little secret. We’re addicted to a drug. A drug dealt everyday in the halls of Congress, on the streets of Washington, and at the exclusive Georgetown soirees. That drug is corruption, pure and simple. And the dealers are lobbyists. The year 2009 was record breaking for the lobbying industry, mostly due to the health care debate, with total spending on all issues at more than $3.47 billion.

Is Economic Growth a Delusion?

banks

Unemployment reached 8.5% in March of this year, but add in the once full-time, now part-time laborers, it may be as high as 15%. Yet my fellow rail commuters somewhere between New Haven and Grand Central Terminal think they smell recovery. As one salesman put it to me, “things will come back–even better than they […]

Reading The Videos: Israel’s Glamor v. Palestine’s Despair

israel-gaza

Certainly no person aware of Israel’s blockade of goods and services to Gaza, or Israel’s devastating bombing of Gaza, would consider Gaza a vacation haven. Gaza is not a place of joy. It’s an overcrowded war zone populated by more than a million terrified men, women and children. They subsist amidst the rubble caused by […]

Wiped? Back to Work

falling-uncle-sam

This past Sunday I ran for re-election as a Delegate to the California Democratic Party (CDP). I was on the Progressive Slate, from the 42nd Assembly District which covers parts of LA and the San Fernando Valley. Two years ago when I first ran, local progressive Dems were fired up and ready to give the […]

Mayor Villaraigosa, Please Help Our Neighbors

homeless man

In Los Angeles Zipcode 90042, there are 385 families that may be evicted before the holidays. Of these, 211 live in bank-owned properties, 59 have homes that up for auction, and 115 have homes in foreclosure. We encourage you to sign Motion 07-2438-69, which was proposed by City Council President Eric Garcetti, seconded by Councilmember […]

Pastor Wright, It’s Time to Dance with What There Is

So let’s see now. We’ve had the flag pins, the “bitter” bit, some moldy-oldie urban guerrilla nobody ever heard of, and now, the rather large, open, and self-involved mouth of Pastor Jeremiah Wright. And THAT is what’s stamped “URGENT” at this late date in presidential primary season. This, while we also have gasoline at four-plus […]