November 5, 2009 |
Robert Greene's Nov. 1 Op-Ed article, "The real Villaraigosa era begins now," in which he portrays Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's first term as largely a continuation of his predecessor James K. Hahn's policies and offers prognostications regarding his second term, was strange and strained. And wrong. As every serious student of modern cities -- and of Los Angeles history -- knows, the aspiration for safer neighborhoods, improved mobility and public transit, and the development of jobs and affordable housing must be staples of focus for municipal leadership.
January 25, 2010 |
After being shut out at the Golden Globes last week and the Screen Actors Guild awards on Saturday night, "The Hurt Locker" won the Producers Guild of America's Darryl F. Zanuck producer of the year award on Sunday. The award went to producers Kathryn Bigelow (who also directed), Mark Boal (who wrote the screenplay), Nicolas Chartier and Greg Shapiro. The heart-pounding drama about a bomb-defusing unit in the Iraq war had won several recent critics' honors but lost footing after the Globes chose "Avatar" as best dramatic film and the SAG film ensemble award went to "Inglourious Basterds."
October 28, 2009 |
The Times' Oct. 19 editorial, "Fighting swine flu," criticizes the vaccination efforts of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (which I head) for not focusing enough on schools. While it is true that L.A. County's inoculation program isn't as focused on schools as New York City's is, The Times' criticism of our efforts reflects a misunderstanding by the editorial board of our outreach to schools, our extensive H1N1 vaccination efforts and the unique features of our county.
December 22, 2009 |
Senate Democrats took another step toward passing the sweeping healthcare overhaul before Christmas, adopting a package of modifications to their legislation and defeating another Republican-led filibuster early today. The package includes a series of compromises worked out by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) with other Democrats. Senators approved it, 60 to 39. Then they voted to limit debate, also 60 to 39. Republican Sen. James M. Inhofe, of Oklahoma, was absent.
December 20, 2009 |
Last June, a long time ago in politics, Democrats in the Senate were briefly jubilant. For the first time in a generation, they held 60 seats, the "supermajority" required to control the Senate's proceedings. The road to enacting President Obama's center-left agenda looked, for a moment, almost smooth. But that's not how the Senate works. It's an assembly of 100 independent egos, not a parliament of two disciplined parties. The word "control" doesn't apply. Last week, as Majority Leader Harry Reid struggled to corral 60 votes to move a healthcare bill forward, the jubilation of summer gave way to desperation on cold winter nights -- with occasional flashes of recrimination.
January 16, 2010 |
"Avatar" won a record-breaking six Critics' Choice Movie Awards on Friday night, but it was the independent Iraq war drama "The Hurt Locker" took home the best picture honors from the Broadcast Film Critics Assn. Kathryn Bigelow also won as director of the harrowing ensemble war film. "The Hurt Locker," which is nominated for best picture and director at Sunday's Golden Globes, has received the lion's share of critics' awards, including honors from the L.A. Film Critics Assn.