Los Angeles

In Midst Of Democratic “Morass”, Could Jerry Brown Come To The Rescue At Age 82, And Unite Democrats In 2020?

In the midst of Democratic Party “morass”, stirred up further by Donna Brazile”s new book, and the lack of leadership and a new agenda, other than to wait for Donald Trump to implode, it is alarming those who want an aggressive approach to revive Democratic fortunes.

The clear need for a new generation of leadership is clear cut, but at this point, some are starting to notice that the Governor of the largest state is actively on the attack against the Trump Administration on the issues of the environment, immigration, gun regulations, and more. He is the great progressive star. Who are we referring to?

We are talking about Jerry Brown, who is 79 years old, and will leave the Governorship a year from now at age 80.

Some are wondering could a 82 year old four time Governor of California, at age 36-44 and then 72-80, actually mount a Presidential campaign for the fourth time, after trying in 1976, 1980 and 1992–so 44, 40 and 28 years ago?

It seems crazy to imagine it, but it also demonstrates how weak the Democrats seem to be, as we start to consider Presidential candidates in 2020 for the Democrats.

All one can say is IF we are to even think about Jerry Brown, then we cannot dismiss Joe Biden (78 in 2020), or Elizabeth Warren (71 in 2020), and even Bernie Sanders (79 in 2020).

But this blogger still feels strongly that a new generation in the 40s, 50, and early 60s is the best route to travel, and would include such leaders as Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut, Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles, Senator Kamala Harris of California, likely future California Governor Gavin Newsom, Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and others not often mentioned.

March 3, 2020 Becomes Key Presidential Nomination Day: Could Help California Democrat To Become Presidential Nominee

More than ever, “Super Tuesday”, March 3, 2020, will be THE most crucial day in the Presidential primaries for the 2020 Presidential campaign.

As things now stand, only Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina will continue to be the first states to hold primaries or caucuses before March–with a multitude of states holding their primaries the first Tuesday in March.

In 2016, New Hampshire and South Carolina held primaries, and Iowa and Nevada held caucuses. Eleven states held contests on the first Tuesday in March, which was March 1, with nine holding primaries and two holding caucuses.

Now, however, California has moved its primary from June to March 3, 2020, and being the biggest state in population, it will have a far greater impact than it has had in June, when the nominations of both parties had already been settled earlier.

It should make the Democratic nominee more likely to be to the left of center, rather than centrist, and the Republican nominee to be more likely to be centrist conservative than a right wing conservative.

The pressure for earlier declarations of candidacy and for more campaigning throughout 2019 will be great.

On first thoughts, it would seem that any of three California Democrats might have the edge for the Presidential nomination, and that the three–Senator Kamala Harris, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and presumed Governor Gavin Newsom, presently Lieutenant Governor of the state–would have a battle royale as to which would be the strongest and most likely challenger.

But also, someone like Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders might also have the edge, as things stand now.

The Republicans would probably, assuming Donald Trump is not in the White House, have a good opportunity for a John Kasich or Jon Huntsman, the two most moderate conservative candidates in 2016 and 2012 respectively, to have an edge.

But, of course, trying to project two and a half years from now is a pure guessing game, but fun to speculate about!

The Democratic Presidential Rumor Mill Grows From 18 To 25! But Probably 10 “Serious” Possibilities!

Nine days ago, this blogger published an article, discussing 18 potential Democratic Presidential candidates for 2020.

My article was a bit ahead of the media in bringing up the issue, but now the rumor mill has come up with 7 more potential Democratic candidates, making for a total, in theory, of 25!

This is the silly season, right after the First Hundred Days of Donald Trump, and having a list this lengthy does seem a bit ridiculous.

However, for the record, the other 7 names being bandied about are:

Former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley from 2007 to 2015 and Baltimore Mayor before that from 1999-2007, age 57 in 2020, who this blogger should NOT have left off the original list. O’Malley was once thought of as the “new generation” of leadership, but could not compete against Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, and the rumors that Joe Biden would run. Certainly, he belonged on the original list of 18, making it 19, and has a likely better chance in theory than some on that list.

Entrepreneur, businessman, and owner of the Dallas Mavericks basketball team, Mark Cuban, age 62 in 2020, who is very personable and appealing, and could be the “outsider”, equivalent of the Democrats’ Donald Trump, but personally, this blogger is not keen about outside businessmen with no government experience, and Donald Trump just adds to that feeling, that it is not a great idea.

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, age 63 in 2020, who leaves office at the end of this year, but was formerly Democratic National Chairman from 2001-2005; Bill Clinton co chair in the 1996 Presidential campaign; and Hillary Clinton chair in the 2008 Presidential campaign, has the disadvantage of being connected to the Clintons, and has an image of being a bit sleazy and crooked throughout his political career, so would not seem a likely choice to get very far in the 2020 Presidential race. If anything, Senators Tim Kaine and Mark Warner seem more likely candidates from Virginia.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, age 60 in 2020, whose sister Mary was a long time US Senator from Louisiana fromJimmy 1997 to 2015, and whose father, Moon Landrieu, was Mayor of the city from 1970-1978, and Housing and Urban Development Secretary under Jimmy Carter from 1979 to 1981, has become recently controversial with his decision to remove Confederate monuments in the city, including those of Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee. Being a moderate Southern Democrat might make some think of Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, but it would seem highly unlikely that he would have much of a shot at the nomination for President.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who would be 49 in 2020, and who is Jewish and also of Mexican heritage as well, and mayor of the second largest city in America in the largest state in America, might possibly be a more serious nominee on paper. Garcetti has long experience in city government, being a member of the LA City Council, and then its President, for nearly a total of 12 years on the Council, and Mayor since 2013. Being a person of urban and multiple ethnic and religious Los Angeles, the most diverse city possible in America, might just be a positive in the long run, and this is a person to watch, in the view of this blogger.

We also have two Massachusetts members of the House of Representatives, Seth Moulton, who would be 42 in 2020; and President John F. Kennedy’s grand nephew, Robert F. Kennedy’s grandson, and former Congressman Joe Kennedy II’s son, Joe Kennedy III, who would be only 40. Moulton has served since 2015 in the House, and Kennedy since 2013, and both have made names for themselves with their liberal views, and both are seen as ambitious rivals, but a bit young to be thinking of running, or be considered at all for the Presidency. Also, only James A. Garfield in 1880 went directly from the House to the Presidency, and then he was tragically killed within months. To believe a House member would be elected is highly unlikely.

In the view of this blogger, one could add O’Malley and Garcetti to the shorter list with Chris Murphy, Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar, Andrew Cuomo, Gavin Newsom, Mark Warner, Sherrod Brown, and Elizabeth Warren as the most legitimate candidates.

So I am saying a total of 10 serious candidates is likely, which is certainly long enough—6 US Senators, 3 Governors (assuming Newsom is elected California Governor), and 1 Mayor, LA Mayor Garcetti. The list also includes 2 women, 1 African American, and 1 Jewish and Mexican combination (Garcetti). This is a pretty representative list.

Any commentary by my readers on this and the April 25 article is welcome!

Donald Trump And North Korea

The latest reports about Donald Trump indicate plans to resolve the North Korean problem in an extreme way that could lead to nuclear war.

One plan is to send nuclear missiles to South Korea, upping the ante of possible nuclear war directly on the population of North Korea, but 25 million South Koreans within range of the North Korean army, the fourth largest military in the world.

Another plan is to remove Kim Jon Un from power altogether.

But while the latter possibility sounds good on the surface, and is comparative to the death of Osama bin Laden in 2011 under President Barack Obama’s administration, it is really NOT a similar scenario.

Osama bin Laden was not the leader of a government, an organized state.

Kim Jong Un, as crazy and dangerous as he is, IS the leader of a government, and the possibility of a massive invasion of South Korea, as in the Korean War of 1950-1953 is alarming.

Let us not forget that 33,000 Americans died in the Korean War, and a hundred thousand were wounded, and the war dragged on for three years and one month.

Let us also not forget that officially it is against international law to assassinate foreign leaders, although the United States has done that before, either directly or indirectly, as for instance in Chile in 1973, under Richard Nixon, as just one example.

The thought of the US using nuclear weapons, when the only time it occurred, was against Japan at Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II, is horrifying.

But there is no question of the complexity of the North Korean threat, which experts say within a few years could target Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and the state of Hawaii, along with the threat to Japan and South Korea.

The question is whether we have a sane, balanced President to deal with this issue, and there is much doubt and trepidation about that.

Los Angeles Minimum Wage To Go To $15 By 2020! Is This The Trend For The Nation?

The issue of the minimum wage has been a controversial one for the past decade, with the unwillingness of Congress to raise the minimum wage, which used to be raised automatically, based on the “cost of living” until the Presidency of Ronald Reagan.

Ever since, even despite occasional increases under George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, the argument has been that raising the minimum wage will cause more unemployment and raise prices for consumers dramatically.

But many say that is not the case, and that it is a situation of a basic human right, the ability to support oneself and one’s family, and that many of the people on the minimum wage are NOT young beginning workers, as claimed by critics, but rather people primarily of color who are single mothers with children.

Now Los Angeles has taken the bull by the horn, and mandated a $15 minimum wage in steps by the year 2020, and a few other localities, such as San Francisco and Seattle, have also raised the minimum wage, although not as high as Los Angeles.

There is a movement nationwide by fast food workers, and retail industry workers, to force an increase by demonstrations, with limited success at this time.

The fact is that IF the minimum wage was always based on the cost of living, the original minimum wage of 25 cents per hour in 1938 would not be about $22.00 an hour, so even what Los Angeles has mandated will happen, does not meet that standard.

President Obama has proposed a national minimum wage of $9 an hour, a small step forward.

It is clear that no worker, who works full time, should be expected to live in poverty, and if the rest of us must pay a higher price for goods and services, so be it!

51st Anniversary Of March On Washington, And We Are Moving Backwards!

Last year, the nation celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for justice, civil rights, and advancement of the nation economically and socially, with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s speech the highlight of the event, attended by a crowd of all races and nationalities.

Now, a year later, we have a massive problem of outrageous law enforcement abuse in St. Louis, New York City, Los Angeles, and every day, more evidence of police officers killing, rather than wounding or tasering many suspects or citizens, a tremendous over reaction!

Racism has never disappeared, but now we have police departments with equipment used in the Iraq and Afghanistan War, and acting more like the Gestapo, being very trigger happy!

There is no need for military style equipment to be given to communities in America, as we are not a military or police dictatorship, and journalists and citizens should not be abused with tear gas, rubber bullets, or weapons being pointed at them menacingly, and having foul language used toward them.

Additionally, there have been cases of mentally ill people, disabled people, being seen as a threat when they are not, and immediately, the reaction is “Shoot to kill”, and multiple bullets to vital areas, and often by multiple police officers, making the events a massacre!

We are a government of, by and for the people, not of, by and for the police! The police deserve respect, but not obedience when they are committing crimes as police officers, and they need to be brought under control!

Alarming Police Overreaction Against Blacks Nationwide, As Threat Of International Terrorism Grows Dramatically!

Many people would say that because Barack Obama was elected twice as our first African American President, that racism is gone from American society!

The statement is, of course, preposterous on its face. There are two many people of other racial backgrounds who have shown evidence of discriminatory thoughts, statements, and actions against African Americans and Latinos to be able to assert that racism has dissipated.

If anything, it is the right wing media, and the talk show hosts on radio and Fox News Channel, who are fueling the fires of racism, making whites feel that, somehow, THEY have been discriminated against!

But the recent spate of police officers shooting and killing African American men in St. Louis and Los Angeles, and the choking to death of an African American man by police in New York City, is particularly alarming, as if the law enforcement authorities are perceived as declaring open season on minority men, and even sometimes women, then we are on the road to racial warfare, which hate mongering groups would only be too glad to inspire.

This is a crisis of massive proportions, and no longer can be said to be a “Southern” issue, as it often was depicted even a half century ago, when Northerners wanted to feel good about themselves, and denied that they were part of the problem of racism, prejudice, and discrimination, when they most certainly were part of the problem, although more attention was paid to the Southern states.

This is a very delicate time, with growing inequality of opportunity for the poor and middle class, whether white or minority, and the growing international threat of Islamic terrorism presented by the rise of ISIL, the Islamic State in the Levant. This group controls a large portion of Iraq and Syria, and threatens to slaughter large numbers of non Sunni Arabs, as well as Christians and minority religious groups, and which threatens a world wide war against the Western world and Christianity and Judaism. They already have beheaded children, raped women, and executed large numbers of people in the most brutal fashion, making them seem a threat on the level of the Fascism regimes of Germany and Italy 75 years ago.

We could be entering World War III, at a time when our internal peace and stability is being threatened by both discontented whites, but also by law enforcement elements which show no respect or rational behavior against minority members of society.

There is a sense of foreboding that America is reaching a state of condition the most dangerous since the fall of Adolf Hitler in 1945, and far greater in many ways than the conditions of the Cold War, which seem somehow, by comparison, a time when at least the Soviet enemy was rational, not fanatical, based on religion.

Mix religious extremism in the world at large alongside the racial tensions in a time when one had thought the election of Barack Obama made a post racial world, which now is shown to be a myth!

A Rare Moment Of Bipartisanship: Marsha Blackburn-Carol Maloney Promotion Of A National Women’s History Museum In Washington, DC!

Lo and behold, a sign of bipartisanship on an idea that may seem minor to the less informed, but is a wonderful idea: the establishment of a National Women’s History Museum on the Mall in Washington, DC!

It is a pleasure to announce that Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and Democratic Congresswoman Carol Maloney of New York are co-sponsoring legislation to provide for the building of one more museum in or near the Mall in Washington, DC, a museum that is urgently needed to record and commemorate the tremendous contributions and sacrifices of women in American history, who have helped to advance American democracy!

This is long overdue, as we have a national museum for Native Americans, as well as the progress on the African American museum, and a few years ago, the Museum of American Jewish History was opened in Philadelphia, and will demand a visit from this author in the spring of 2014.

There is also a Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles, affiliated with the Smithsonian Museum, but there is no Museum for Asian Americans which incorporates all Asian groups.

There is a push for a National Museum of the American Latino, but there is also discussion of a National Immigration Museum, which might usurp such a initiative, as too many museums and not enough space in DC, forcing it to be elsewhere as the Jewish Museum and Japanese American National Museums already are.

Even if not all of the museums can find a home in the nation’s capital, it is important to commemorate the contributions of all of the varied groups which have made America what it is, a melting pot of the world’s ethnicities!

And while we are at it, how about a National Labor History Museum to commemorate the sacrifices of the working men and women who have made this country what it is, and deserve proper recognition as well?

Top Three American Cities Now Have Jewish Mayors, A First, But Will New York City Elect Anthony Weiner To Succeed Michael Bloomberg In November?

For the first time in American history, the top three cities in America will have Jewish Mayors.

We already had Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City, and Mayor Rahm Emanuel of Chicago, and now we have Mayor Elect Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles, who has a Jewish mother, and a fafher of Spanish, Italian, and Indigenous heritage, which is why his name does not sound Jewish! Garcetti will also be the youngest Mayor of Los Angeles, at age 42, in the past century.

However, Bloomberg is finishing up his third and last term, and the only Jewish candidate who could succeed him in the Mayoralty is former Congressman Anthony Weiner, who was forced to resign over his exposure of x rated pictures on the internet two years ago.

Weiner is attempting a comeback, and has $5 million in his bank account, plus name recognition, although a lot of it might be seen as negative, because of the sex scandal which brought him to resignation.

Is there redemption for Weiner, as there was for former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford, who won back the former Congressional seat he held before he was Governor, and in the wake of his pursuit of a lover in Argentina, while married and having three sons?

It is hard to know at this point, as New York City can be a forgiving place, and has already as an announced candidate the Speaker of the City Council, Christine Quinn, a woman who is a declared lesbian and is married to her partner: and Bill De Blasio, the NYC Public Advocate, whose wife is African American, while De Blasio is white.

Certainly, there are some who would not like someone involved in a sex scandal; or a married lesbian; or a white guy married to a black woman! So there is plenty of room for outrage by people of different stripes, who do not like any or all of these situations.

But this is modern America, and NYC represents a microcosm of that America, and the issues of sex, sexual preference, and race will play out and, likely, elect one of these three individuals as the next Mayor of NYC, and if Weiner wins, again, we will have the top three cities in America with Jewish Mayors!

Rick Santorum Bashes New York City And Los Angeles, And By Implication, Boston! What It Says About Him!

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, challenging Mitt Romney for the Republican Presidential nomination, has now gone on the attack against New York City and Los Angeles, and by implication, Boston, since Massachusetts is the state in which Mitt Romney was governor,

This reminds us of Barry Goldwater in 1964, suggesting that the Atlantic Coast of North America be cut off and sent out to sea.

It also reminds us of Sarah Palin in 2008, who criticized the coastlines of America, and claimed the “real America” was in the heartland.

The problem is that one can attack those three cities, and the states that they are part of, but there is no way to claim that the heartland of the nation matches the significance and influence of New York City, Los Angeles, and Boston, in the present, or historically!

These are the cultural, financial, business, intellectual and educational centers of America.

These cities have among the best universities in the world, and their states easily have had a greater impact on America than all of the heartland states combined, both past and present.

People can have proud regional biases, but the reality is that these three cities and states are the center of American progress and accomplishments, and that will not change.

So to condemn these cities and states is pure stupidity and ignorance, and proves that Rick Santorum, like Sarah Palin and Barry Goldwater, is not qualified for the Presidency, since he does not recognize the reality of the influence and significance of these coastline cities and states! And to pit a portion of the nation against other areas is also demagogic and despicable to the core!