EDUCATION POLITICS--Oh, California, you paradise, you far-flung western shoal, you frontier beyond purple mountains and fruited plains, you earth-shaking technological marvel, you never-ending party — California, you’re the land of good news, where the economy booms and the culture is wildly, diversely, supremely cool. You’re the golden realm at the end of our national rainbow. 

NC BUDGET ADVOCATES—LA Neighborood Council Budget Advocates Janet Kim, Carol Newman, Michael Menjivar, and Ricardo Ramirez met with Chief of Staff Leela Ann Kapur and Budget Director Michiko Reyes from the City Attorney’s office to share recommendations, challenges, and successes concerning the city’s liability issue and lawsuits.

GELFAND’S WORLD--Harlan Ellison, Timothy Snyder, and Ta Nehisi Coates are modern authors who have written with great eloquence that Truth Matters. It may seem strange that someone has to say so, but in this era it becomes a painful necessity. Snyder wrote On Tyranny, Coates has written two well received books and a column for The Atlantic. Ellison has published nearly two thousand stories and columns. And they all keep saying that truth matters. They're not alone, but their outspokenness in response to modern forms of public dishonesty stands out. 

ANIMAL WATCH-When Assembly Bill 485, which banned pet shops from selling dogs, cats or rabbits other than “rescued" animals or face a $500 fine, was signed into state law by Governor Jerry Brown on October 13, it also created and legalized an entire new California industry, devoid of regulation and oversight. It seems that the ramifications were also not considered. Sacramento legislators basked in a near-nirvana moment of media attention and glowed in the hype that they were “saving lives” -- as if they had just solved a problem, rather than potentially creating one. 

CAL MATTERS--With a declaration that “public servants best serve the citizenry when they can be candid and honest without reservation in conducting the people’s business,” lawmakers passed the California Whistleblower Protection Act in 1999.

DEEGAN ON LA-The recent news that an as yet gender-unidentified mountain lion has been discovered in the Hollywood Hills reminds us that, while we live in a very dense city, our urban landscape also includes a thriving wilderness. If the mystery cat is a female and if she mates with one of the better-known local mountain lions – such as the iconic P-22 – we could soon have a new family in search of a hillside habitat. It would be, however, a family without a “dad” since male mountain lions leave “mom” within days of mating. 

CORRUPTION WATCH-Los Angeles’ corruptionism will last until LA real estate crashes and burns.  A sociological explanation for this might be that “we grow up to become our parents.” Many of LA Millennials’ parents or grandparents were immigrants from the East Coast or other countries, which means their history has been to leave bad conditions rather than stay and fight for reform.   

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