Saturday's Headlines & Surprises: Meteor Showers Tonight!
- LA vs. OC: The Southern California airport wars continue this morning in a Daily Breeze article detailing a Los Angeles official’s demand that Orange County residents pay for increasing the burden on LAX. “Share the burden or cough up the cash,” is how reporter Art Marroquin summarized the opinion of LA airport commissioner Walter Zifkin. He wants OC folks to pay extra when they use LAX. Len Kranser, part of a massive alliance that successfully prevented the construction of an international airport in the heart of suburban Irvine, told the paper that Marroquin’s idea “will only increase antagonism” between the regions. And then Kranser added the money quote: "Their thinking is as parochial as Orange County deciding to charge L.A. residents to access Disneyland or our beaches.” Zifkin responded by saying OC residents “are only concerned with themselves.” He must be watching The Real Orange County: Newport Harbor High.
- Sneaky Agran Gets Dem Award: OC Democrats pulled in a big fish last night at their annual Harry S Truman Awards Dinner, report Martin Wisckol and Brian Joseph--who erroneously put a dot after the “S” in Truman’s name. Yes, sir. Presidential candidate John Edwards told a crowd of 1,100 people to abandon caution. “We need to change this country in a very, very serious way,” he said. Wisckol and Joseph observed:
Edwards went through his stump-speech list of needed reforms: mandated universal health care, an end to the Bush tax cuts for those making more than $200,000, a cap on carbon emissions, an increase of the minimum wage, lowering obstacles to workers joining unions, free college for all qualified students, reform of "No Child Left Behind" and a withdrawal of troops from Iraq.
But OC Dems apparently weren't listening to Edwards' call for rejecting the status quo. Instead, they gave awards to two questionable characters--one of whom I'm willing to bet is a Republican!
Irvine politician Larry Agran somehow temporarily stopped hiding public records from reporters and making backroom government deals with contributors to accept the award for “outstanding Democrat.” Wayne Quint--president of the local Stormtroopers, err, Association of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs--was honored for screwing taxpayers and corrupting the local political process.
- Snob Alert! From high on her lofty perch above the rest of us, Kimberly Hall Barlow, a lawyer who defends city governments against citizens, recently informed the Daily Pilot, “I do not normally involve myself in political discussions or debates that appear in the local newspaper.” But Barlow felt compelled to defend Dan Peelman, her colleague at the law firm of Jones & Mayer. Peelman is private counsel to the City of Costa Mesa and the doofus who prosecuted Benito Acosta for attempting to address the city council. Yes, Acosta was under the false impression he could speak for the allotted three-minute period rountinely afforded to white, Republican bigots in the city. Allan Mansoor, a sheriff’s deputy when he’s not playing mayor, doesn’t like Acosta’s opinions and turned off the public microphone before time had lapsed. Eager cops then dropped their donuts, swarmed Acosta, dragged him out of the room and roughed him up. Later, Peelman, a former cop, attempted to prosecute Acosta for disrupting a public meeting. A judge dismissed the case because in Peelman’s zealousness to further trample over Acosta he forgot to be sworn in as a special prosecutor. Now comes Barlow to share with us her version of reality: Mayor Mansoor had no influence over the police department, whose budget he helps control, or Peelman, whose lucrative contract he could kill. But give her points for noting correctly, “The prosecutor’s obligation is to represent the people and to do justice.” Exactly, Barlow. So why did your boy Peelman--who reportedly billed taxpayers more than $35,000 for his sloppy work against Acosta--fail on both counts?
- Free Light Show Tonight: Gary Robbins, science guy at the Orange County Register, reports that the “annual Orionid meteor shower will reach its peak late Saturday night and early Sunday as dust particles shed long ago by Halley’s Comet.” Folks in urban areas will see five meteors an hour between 11:30 p.m. and dawn. Country folks should see triple that number, according to Robbins. But, he notes, the show could be screwed if Santa Ana winds blow desert dust around tonight.
-- R. Scott Moxley / OC Weekly