Education, Interviews, LA Noir, News, Summer »

Mixer: Pushing Deasy; from iPads to iQuit

Posted October 17, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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After more than three years heading the LA Unified School District, John Deasy stepped down from his post this week.
Howard Blume is longtime education reporter at the Los Angeles Times, and Vanessa Romo writes for the news website LA School Report. Both joined in for the Mixer.

Deasy is set to remain with the district on “special assignment” (read: a little golden parachute) through the end of …

California Elections, economy, Environment, Issues, News, Politics, Water and the Drought, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Cashing in on political popularity

Posted October 10, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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President Obama exited Los Angeles just as he came in: making money for Democrats, and migraines for West LA drivers.
In his 24 hours here, the president toured a business in Santa Monica, speaking about an economic recovery for millennials, designated as national monument 340,000 acres of San Gabriel Mountains land and attended two separate fundraisers.
One of which was at actress Gwyneth Paltrow’s home.
Obama has attended 30 fundraisers in Los …

Bad Driving, Commentary, economy, Environment, Interviews, Issues, LA Noir, Politics, The New Mayor, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Is LA making traffic inroads?

Posted October 3, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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I don’t know where you are right now… but if you’re reading this, chances are you’re close to a web page that will show a geographic freeway map of Los Angeles.
And the 10, 110, 101 or 405 may not be cooperating with your travel plans.
But is it getting better, or are Angelenos still languishing in congested ridiculousness, with no end in sight?
Laura J. Nelson …

economy, Education, Issues, News, Sports, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Locked up, then locked out

Posted September 19, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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This week, the Federal Reserve Board kept interest rates low, and vowed to keep them low for a “considerable time.”
And then there was the wonky we could raise rates down the road if the economy starts moving faster stuff.
The job market, says the Fed, is affected by myriad happenings: An economy that’s still sluggish, and recovering from a Great Recession. An older population. Jobs …

California Elections, economy, Issues, LA Noir, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Thread and bread, the cartel connection

Posted September 12, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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Hundreds of federal agents descended this week on downtown Los Angeles’ Fashion District, making arrests as part of what prosecutors say is a sophisticated operation to launder money for Mexican drug cartels.
Authorities took 9 people into custody, and seized more than $90 million.
Federal prosecutors are calling it “Operation Fashion Police”.
Joe Mathews, from Zocalo Public Square, and Joe Mozingo, who reports for the Los Angeles …

California Elections, economy, Issues, LA Noir, News, Politics, Runaway Production, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Tinseltown tax credits and jobs

Posted September 5, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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On this first Friday of the month, we got a jobs report from the Labor Department. A lackluster one, nationally, for sure.
But here in Los Angeles, there’s some optimism from city officials and state lawmakers about film and television production jobs sticking around instead of being exported to other parts of the country.
The California legislature passed a bill that gives $330 million in tax …

California Elections, Education, Issues, LA Noir, Politics, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: School’s in, iPads out

Posted August 29, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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The Los Angeles Unified School District has scrapped the $1 (B) billion effort to provide all students and teachers with iPad tablets and laptops.
Embattled Superintendent John Deasy says he wants to gather new bids for future phases of the program.
Which is spin for this plan isn’t working.
The change comes in light of alleged improprieties in the awarding of the original contracts with Apple and …

Environment, Interviews, News, Politics »

Foster children disproportionately identify as LGBTQ

Posted August 27, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
The Los Angeles LGBT Center

Los Angeles is home to the nation’s largest population of foster youth.
A new study out today from UCLA’s Williams Institute and the Los Angeles LGBT Center that finds gay youth are – in big numbers – over-represented in the foster care system.
Lorri L. Jean is the CEO of the Los Angeles LGBT Center and says the study finds 1 in 5 youth in foster …

economy, Environment, Issues, LA Noir, Politics, Power and Water, Summer, Water and the Drought, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Water levels, down; water shaming, way up

Posted August 22, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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As the severe drought continues in California, the state’s water authority is now actively imposing fines of up to $500 on people who are wasteful.
The Los Angeles Times reports the city’s Department of Water and Power has increased its patrol of water wasting by quadrupling the number of its city-wide inspectors: from one to four.
Los Angeles has about four million people.
Water tables are at …

Interviews, News, Politics »

Mixer: How much is too much policing?

Posted August 15, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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While things have calmed down considerably in Ferguson, Missouri, in the last day or two, the people of that St. Louis suburb are still up-in-arms about the death of teenager Michael Brown.
Protestors maintain Officer Darren Wilson was not justified in shooting and killing the 18 year old, who eyewitnesses say had his hands up and was unarmed.
In the wake of protests in Ferguson, critics …

Bad Driving, economy, Environment, Issues, LA Noir, Summer, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: Lane-splitting motorcyclists

Posted August 8, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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I don’t have to tell you how much time we spend in our cars here in Southern California. You’re probably reading this in your car right now.
I hope not.
Because it’s hard (and illegal) enough to take your eyes off the road to avoid crunching the guy in front of you. You also have to look left or right to make sure you don’t cause …

Environment, Issues, Politics, Power and Water, The New Mayor, Zocalo Public Square »

When LA’s infrastructure fails, who pays?

Posted August 1, 2014 by | 1 Comment | ]
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Tens of millions of gallons of water poured down Sunset Boulevard and onto the UCLA campus Tuesday, the result of a rupture in a massive, high-pressure water line more than nine decades old.
Hundreds of cars that were parked in underground decks were flooded and ruined, and at least a half dozen buildings on the college campus suffered various degrees of damage.
The court inside of …

economy, Issues, LA Noir, News, Politics, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: High LA rents; are wages keeping up?

Posted July 25, 2014 by | 1 Comment | ]
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As cities go across the country, Los Angeles isn’t the most expensive. Rents are not as exorbitant as San Francisco or New York, but they’re pricey enough.
Average rents have been on a skyward trajectory for the few years following the financial and housing crisis. And that has people in town scrambling for cheaper areas of town in which to live.
Joe Mathews is California Columnist for Zocalo …

Arts & Culture, Interviews, News »

The strange sounds – and history – of the theremin

Posted July 22, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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If there’s any instrument that gets misunderstood and under-appreciated in music, it’s the theremin.
Countless bands have employed the warbly, eerie-sounding electronic instrument, from The Pixies to the White Stripes. It was perhaps most famously used by The Beach Boys in “Good Vibrations.”
The theremin was created by a Russian physicist, Lev Sergeyevich Termen. He’s the main character in “Us Conductors”, the debut novel by Montreal-based …

economy, Education, Interviews, Issues, News, Politics, Zocalo Public Square »

Mixer: The state of a border state, where Murrieta marks the spot

Posted July 18, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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This week, House Speaker John Boehner said it’ll be difficult to monetarily address the flow of undocumented kids across the U.S./Mexico border, until the 2008 law that allowed their travels to the aforementioned place is changed. Boehner said the anti-trafficking regulations that were put in place during the waning year of the Bush administration are being abused, and that he doesn’t foresee much progress …

economy, Issues, LA Noir, News, Politics, Silicon Beach »

Mixer: Reporting from a foreign land is tough – just ask a Brit in LA

Posted July 11, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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For people who are not familiar with Los Angeles – who aren’t from here, but have to report about the things happening around here, particularly from a media and business standpoint – our neighborhood can be a pretty daunting place.  
All the eccentricities, idiosyncrasies, and moving parts behind-the-scenes make for all kinds of drama fit for an epic Hollywood screenplay.
But in real life, Matthew …

Arts & Culture, Interviews »

Tom Schnabel remembers jazz musician Charlie Haden

Posted July 11, 2014 by | 4 Comments | ]
A photo of Charlie Haden from 2008, by Tim Dickeson.

The jazz world is mourning today the death of a great musician. Bassist Charlie Haden passed away at the age of 77, after a long illness.
Haden – a three-time Grammy winner – was born in the Midwest, but came to LA in the 1950s, enrolling at Westlake College of Modern Music.
His music and performances touched on political themes at times, a mirror of the …

Arts & Culture, Environment, News »

An olfactory guide to Los Angeles

Posted June 25, 2014 by | 3 Comments | ]
KCRW's Steve Chiotakis, left, takes a big whiff of East LA from a scent strip held by artist Brian Goeltzenleuchter.

What does your neighborhood smell like?
It’s not a question we ask ourselves often, and yet it’s something we notice every day. Is it the smell of sea air, freshly-cut grass, car exhaust, bacon-wrapped hot dogs, urine, or something else?
Los Angeles artist Brian Goeltzenleuchter posted a survey online and received dozens of responses. He used that information to create 11 scents that correspond to different …

California Elections, economy, Environment, Issues, LA Noir, News, Politics, The New Mayor »

Mixer: Tripping on sidewalks and all those pot shops

Posted June 20, 2014 by | 0 Comments | ]
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A Los Angeles City Council committee has voted to conduct a pilot program to replace some problem sidewalks, with a material that’s a bit more resilient and porous.
Those are things like rubber, crushed asphalt, or decomposed granite.
Adrian Glick-Kudler, senior editor at Curbed LA, says the idea is that the more porous the material, the more water that material will allow to seep into groundwater …

California Elections, economy, Environment, Issues, LA Noir, News, Silicon Beach, The New Mayor »

Mixer: Smooth electric technology, bumpy LA roads

Posted June 13, 2014 by | 3 Comments | ]
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Dave Zahniser reports for the Los Angeles Times. Alan Ohnsman is with the LA Bureau of Bloomberg News, who covers Tesla.
This week the LA City Council nixed their push for a half-cent sales tax increase to pay for more than 8,000 miles of much-needed street repairs.
City Council members Mitch Englander and Joe Buscaino dropped their ballot measure proposal that would’ve raised the city sales tax rate to 9.5 …

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