Short Answer: in Europe, partying while Angelenos are dying and being displaced, and colluding with Donald Trump.
Magically animated wooden marionette Eric Garcetti was just inaugurated for his second term as Mayor of Los Angeles, which will stretch on for a whopping five and a half years into 2022.
I attended his inauguration and watched as several members of Black Lives Matter LA and WP4BL were successful in gaining entrance to disrupt the event (held on public property but not open to the public, no less), calling for the removal of noted murderer and Chief of Police, Charlie Beck. Check it out @59:25:00:
The event was nothing short of farce. Members of these opposition movements, including children, were man-handled by cops and threatened with being arrested, all for expressing their freedom to assemble and freedom of speech. Watch as Eric grits his teeth in his perma-grin as his mom swears him in and the sound mixer mixes out the chants of “Black Lives Matter” and “Fire Charlie Beck”.
In the past week, Garcetti felt so confident in his approval ratings that he has spent the majority of his second term as Mayor of Los Angeles traveling to Europe to attend “Sister Cities” events in Berlin and Olympic-related events in Switzerland. Must be nice to be Mayor of L.A.
This, while L.A. is dying on several fronts, from our huge spike in homelessness, our affordable housing crises, the fact that L.A. isn’t a sanctuary city, the fact that we have the deadliest police force in America, our environmental problems, and on and on.
Garcetti’s spent a large swath of 2017 outside of Los Angeles, whether that’s pre-campaigning in Wisconsin and Florida (i.e. places Democrats should have been in 2015 and 2016) or spending a lot of time in Washington, D.C. with his friend and sometime political ally, Donald Trump. In fact, I’ve heard from many sanctuary advocates in L.A. that Garcetti has spoken and met more times with Trump since he was elected than he has with them. I wanted to fact check this with the Mayor’s office, and their response is head-spinningly vacuous.
Here’s what I wrote to their press agent:
“What I’m looking for clarification on specifically are the following:
- How many times has Garcetti spoken on the phone with Trump since Trump’s election? And can you tell me when those happened?
- How many times has Garcetti met in person with Trump since Trump’s election? And can you tell me when those happened and if you can speak on the substance of those meetings? Also, how many times prior to his election have the two met?
- How many times has Garcetti met with sanctuary city advocates since Trump’s election and can you tell me when exactly those happened?”
Here is the response from Alex Comisar, speaking on behalf of the Mayor, re: Donald Trump:
“Mayor Garcetti has spoken with the President on multiple occasions to discuss climate change, immigration and the Olympics, and to express his opposition to policies that he does not believe are serving Angelenos’ best interests.”
First off: what?
Of course, I reached out for a clarification as to the number of times and conversations with the President, which there are surely records of. I may not remember how many times I’ve done laundry this year, but I would certainly remember all the times I’ve spoken to or met with the most laughably corrupt president of my lifetime, especially if I had a team of handlers who keep meticulous track of my calendars and meetings.
Which begs the question: why can’t the Mayor’s office answer simple, direct questions? Clearly, they’re embarrassed and prefer circumlocuting their way to oblivion.
Also, why isn’t the L.A. news-collecting media holding our feckless mayor accountable for allying with Trump for transit money tied to this atrocious Olympic bid that will expose and exacerbate all of L.A.’s true vulnerabilities?
Because it’s easier to hope that Eric Garcetti will defend us from Trump or from the catastrophic L.A. homelessness and housing problem or from our murderous peace officers than to confront the fact that Garcetti — in true compromised neoliberal form — has no interest in actually addressing the deep issues at the core of our problems.
Even when he’s in town, he’s too busy playing jazz piano at La La Land Day or riding around the Batmobile like an eight year old to confront the adult realities of a city that has literally become unlivable for thousands.
In all honestly, I don’t think Garcetti will get away with it for long. Five and half years is a long time for people to wise up and realize this guy — like our President — has no ideology whatsoever.