L.A. NOW

Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Steve Lopez: 'Whore' debate distracts from Brown and Whitman's empty campaign rhetoric

October 11, 2010 |  4:08 pm

 

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/.a/6a00d8341c630a53ef0133f4150cbe970b-pi

Well, now I’ve gone and ticked off the Los Angeles Police Protective League, which got hold of me over the weekend regarding my posting last week on "Whoregate."

You’d think a guy who was once known as Gov. Moonbeam would know how to work a telephone, but Jerry Brown began this mess when he failed to properly hang up a phone after a conversation with the L.A. Police Protective League. That's when one of his aides was heard referring to Whitman as a whore for exempting public safety employees from part of her crackdown on pensions, even as the L.A. Police Protective League was endorsing her.

L.A. Police Protective League spokesman Eric Rose and President Paul Weber wanted to make sure I understood that Whitman’s pension plan will affect state employees, not local ones, so the group did not give her an endorsement in return for an exemption. No quid pro quo, in other words.

Yes, I did understand that, and I should have made myself more clear.

But still.

As I said last week, Whitman seems to be a hypocrite, at the very least, for making public employee unions out to be public enemy No. 1, and Jerry Brown to be their lap dog. And yet Whitman, not Brown, is the one whose pension reform plan gives a big break to state public safety employees, leaving them out of her proposal to convert state employees to 401(k)s. You think her positioning might have helped win the endorsement of the California Statewide Law Enforcement Assn?

And by the way, I’m all in favor of pension reform, but converting civilians to 401(k)s is potentially disastrous. What happens when 401(k)s shrink, as they do when Goldman Sachs and other of Whitman’s Wall Street buddies run amok? Won’t the state be stuck with the bill for the damage?

In a news release, the League said it endorsed Whitman because of her staunch support of the death penalty and because she’s made "a commitment to fully fund public safety."

"In the end," said the release, "it came down to the fact that Whitman is prepared with an economic plan, and while we appreciate Brown’s 40 years of service, we’re gravely concerned over his lack of a comprehensive one."

They’re right about Brown. No comprehensive economic plan, or budget-balancing plan.

But as I’ve been writing now for months, Brown is not alone in that regard.

Does anyone really believe, as the L.A. Police Protective League seems to, that "Whitman is prepared with an economic plan," or that even if she had one, she'd be able to do anything with it, given the guarantee of a Legislature that will continue to be dominated by Democrats?


Comments 

Advertisement










Video