Wednesday, May 6, 2009

CM PRESS # 686


You will recall that Mayor Mansoor wants Van Tran's seat in the Assembly since Van Tran is leaving it.

You will also note that we got it right when we earlier had written that Van Tran would try for Sanchez's seat rather than for a seat in the state senate as some had thought. Just not enough of a promotion between the assembly and the senate.

The Van Tran vs. Sanchez and Mansoor vs. ? races are all intertwined with ethnic demographics and will turn on these demographics rather than on party affiliation, although almost everyone will deny it.

Van Tran should get a solid Vietnamese, Korean and White vote, that, in the case of the Vietnamese and Koreans, will include many Democrat Vietnamese and Koreans who will cross party lines to vote for Republican Tran.

White Democrats will stick with Sanchez as will Hispanic Democrats. Sanchez needs to get just about every Hispanic vote in the district to win. This means she will have to appeal to Hispanic Republicans--even though there aren't that many of them. This might be a problem for her because many Hispanics who are Republicans are fully assimilated into a mostly lumpen American electorate and will vote party over ethnicity.

Watch as Van Tran trots out some Hispanics who say they will support him, and Sanchez trots out some Vietnamese who say they will support her. Ho hum. It's all show folks, the numbers of these cross-ethnic voters in this district will be small.

Who will win? Check the demographics of the district based on what we wrote above and add 'em up. There's your winner. Don't put much weight on party affiliation in this race.

Mansoor doesn't seem to have much of a cachet outside of Costa Mesa. And, even in Costa Mesa--which should be his power base--many are upset with his votes to raise fees on citizens. But maybe this will blow over.

In addition, as we've written before, we believe that Van Tran will support a Vietnamese candidate to take his Assembly seat over Mansoor. Early on, he may get his arm twisted by some GOP Bigs who may want Mansoor, but Tran will probably successfully argue that a Vietnamese clone of Van Tran is more likely to win the seat--based on demographics and the fact that Tran has already proven that a Vietnamese candidate can win in the district. If this happens, Tran has the ability to dry up Mansoor's donations and support among the GOP Bigs, since if it seems to the GOP Bigs that Van Tran can win a seat in Congress, they'll give him their money and support and they'll also back his choice for his old Assembly seat.

Who will win? Too early to tell and too many variables at this time.

That's how we see things developing as of today.

April 2009
39 ICE Detainers were issued at the Costa Mesa jail--10 were for felonies.

April 2008
32 ICE Detainers were issued at the Costa Mesa jail--13 were for felonies.

Source: CMPD

Ever wonder why the almost daily Daily Pilot doesn't publish these stats? They have the same sources as the CM PRESS.
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Remember the Robin Williams' movie Popeye? The movie opens with Popeye arriving in a rowboat at Sweethaven.

As soon as Popeye climbs up on the pier he's met by The Taxman who starts making up taxes on the fly. A tax for rowing a boat. A tax for climbing on the pier. A tax for this and a tax for that. The Taxman just keeps writing down new taxes and fees in every scene.

At last night's City Council meeting, it seemed as though Mayor Mansoor was playing the part of The Taxman.

When Mansoor was first thinking of running for the City Council, he came to some of us who were meeting regularly to discuss improving the Westside. His pitch was a good one. We got the impression that he was a smaller government, lower crime, no new taxes regular kind of guy and a straight-shooter who wanted a nicer Costa Mesa. And, he lived on the Westside.

Now, it's almost eight years later and Mansoor is near the end of his second and final term in office. Things have changed with Mansoor. He no longer lives on the Westside and doesn't seem very interested in fixing things there and he seems to love new taxes and fees put on the backs of the peons.

Oh, he still talks about lower taxes--from Washington. The problem is that his big talk about Washington doesn't seem to translate into what he can and should do right here in Costa Mesa--cut taxes and fees and cut costs. He spends like a drunken sailor or a Katrina Foley, which is even worse. "Frugal," is not a word this guy seems to understand when it comes to spending our money.

At last night's City Council meeting, Mansoor joined with liberal Katrina Foley and Gary Monahan to put more fees on the backs of Costa Mesa citizens so citizens can keep serving city employees.

You read that right. The motto of citizens of Costa Mesa seems to be: OUR PURPOSE IN LIVING IN COSTA MESA IS TO SERVE CITY EMPLOYEES AND PAY THEM SO WELL THAT THEY DON'T HAVE TO LIVE IN OUR CRIME RIDDEN CITY. (More on crime in the next article below this one--hang on to your hats!)

Want some specifics?

Last night's spending spree by Mansoor, Foley and Monahan involved the Costa Mesa Fire Department.

You see, in order to keep paying at least three firefighters more than $60,000 each, in overtime, in addition to their already extremely generous salaries, seven firefighters more than $50,000 in overtime and twenty-seven firefighters more than $40,000 in overtime, and the rest of the firefighters various other amounts, we now have to charge citizens (in addition to the taxes we already pay for fire department services) a laundry list of other fees.

Wouldn't you like a job where you can get $60,000 a year just in overtime?

Here's a few of the fees you'll now pay, my fellow Sweethaveners:

Get in an auto accident with no Injuries Fee: $80.00 for each quarter hour the fire department is there.

Auto accident with Injuries Fee: $ 170.00 for each half hour the fire department is there.

Plus, there are various and sundry ambulance fees. There's a whole list of them.

Don't take our word on this. Here's a link to the agenda, where you can see all these absurd fees for yourself. You can also see a video of the meeting HERE. (We just checked and the video is ready to view.)


Funny thing,though,when it came to the fees that the fire department wants to charge apartment owners, Taxman Mansoor started backing away from taxes. Wonder why? Well, could it be that the biggest apartment owner in Costa Mesa is former Ambassador to Spain and billionaire George Argyros who is also big in the GOP?

You see, Taxman Mansoor has political aspirations. He wants to run for the State Assembly (where he can put more taxes and fees on us from a state level) and he's going to need the support of the bigs in the GOP if he hopes to win a seat in Sacramento.

Yup. All you little citizens--you lowly peons--will have to pay if you need an ambulance or the fire department. Those things were approved by Taxman Mansoor, Foley and Monahan last night. But, if you own apartments, well, Taxman Mansoor and the others didn't approve those fees last night. Nope. These were the only fees they didn't approve. You see, they, ahem, harumph, want more information on these fees and asked that this be brought back before the Council in July.

Don't get us wrong. The CM PRESS is also opposed to the fees on apartment owners and we spoke against them also, but the transparent political maneuvering over these fees from the dais was so apparent that it was laughable.

And what about Foley? What's her motivation for taxing us peons? She was supported in the last election by the Firefighter and Police Unions. Oh, and she also revealed from the dais that she got a call before the meeting last night from the Apartment Owners Association about the fees that she was to vote on at the meeting.

The true representatives of the ordinary citizens of Costa Mesa last night were Mayor Pro Tem Leece and Councilmember Bever. They both voted against all the new fees. Mansoor should have been voting with them, but as indicated above, he didn't. Taxman Mansoor appears to have gone over to the darkside, as one citizen told us after the meeting.

Maybe some apathetic citizens who aren't paying attention to the big spenders on the Council will wake up after they get into an auto accident or have a heart attack and need an ambulance and after they start get dunning calls from the Fire Department's collection agency demanding that they pay fees for something they thought their taxes were already paying for as basic services.

And, speaking of that, while a guy from the collection agency being hired by the Fire Department was there last night and sat with the Fire Chief, no one asked how much of a cut the collection agency will get out of the fees citizens must pay.

All of the above fees are coming into effect because the Council refuses to make the necessary cuts to get our expenses in line with our income in this city.

Approximately 73 cents of every dollar the city receives, goes to pay salaries, overtime and benefits for City employees.

Maybe it's time, as suggested by a representative of the Apartment Owners Association, who spoke to the Council last night, for the City to farm out our fire services (and maybe also our police services) as do many other cities. Might save us money.

Think we're too hard on Mansoor? We don't. We expected more from him than this nonsense, and he's let us all down.
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According to the OC REGISTER, violent crime in Costa Mesa jumped a whopping 35.7 percent in 2008.

Thanks City Council.

Why do we blame the City Council for this jump in violent crime?

It's because the Council refuses to remove the habitats for criminals--the slums--that will continue to breed gangs and crime as long as they exist.

What the Council should do:

1. Have the CMPD give them a scatter map showing the location of a) violent crimes, and b) location of known perps and gangs.

2. With that information (which will show maybe four hot areas in our city) the Council can work to thin out these hot areas, i.e. the hot areas are the functionally obsolete slum apartments.

Remove some of the buildings and you remove some of the criminals.

Look folks, such a giant jump in our violent crime rate shows the City Council isn't doing its job.

We need to make some changes. We need people on the Council who know how to manage and who put the citizens' interests first. We don't need more political hacks.
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Also at last night's meeting, the CM PRESS told the Council that more than 75% of our police officers (and perhaps a similar percentage of firefighters) don't live in our city--which means that the money we pay them doesn't circulate in our city and that we're also not getting the best service since it's just common sense that city employees who live where they work are more concerned for public safety and the state of the city when their own families are in harm's way.

After we made our comment, Foley, as she often does when we are unable to respond, said that we couldn't know how many cops live in Costa Mesa because information about their addresses is not public information.

Actually, we got the statistics from City Hall and they were based on zip codes of where cops live with no names or actual addresses. So, Foley, get your facts straight before you try this crap with us again. You just look stupid.

We also suggested that Foley get the same statistics we have. All she has to do is ask the City Manager to have a zip code report run on fire and police personnel sans names and other personal information. It's just a simple computer operation.

By the way, the City of Boston, Mass. requires that all city employees--every single one of them--live in the city. If any are found to not live in Boston, they're fired.
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Those are our opinions. Thanks for reading them.


  1. They are calling things "fees" to make them not sound like taxes. You pay a Vehicle License "Fee". It is still a tax. We already pay the Fireman extremely well and extra pay for being paramedics, now we have to pay a "fee"? What's next? A "fee" for them putting a fire out?

  2. Check out and search Costa Mesa.

    27 retired Costa Mesa city employees are now receiving over $100,000 a year in pensions.

  3. I checked out the website. So an ex fire chief gets $147K when he contributed zero. If I made $100K a year for 30 years and put the max 15% into my retirement, I would have invested $675K of my money and only get around $90K in retirement. What is wrong with this picture????

  4. Observations: Monahan tipped his hand before the public even got to speak. He asked staff if CARE ambulance was "aware of the changes we are about to make". He should at least wait for public comments before making a decision. Boss Hog, er, Scott Baugh, and the Republican party are calling the shots here. Mansoor needs him to move up to Assembly (probably won't win), Righiemer(who can deliver Boss Hog) is their next man for council (might win but his ego is irritating and he is a backstabber who has alienated many improvers), followed by Mensinger and McCarthy for council positions next election (they better hope Righeimer wins or they are toast, being tarnished by their association with him). Mansoor won't give Leece the mayorship to run on since she cares more for the people of CM than for the Republican party Bever, being termed out, will return to his roots and split from Mansoor and Righiemer and back Leece. The improvers are toast, they lost their way, and Righiemer bullying in like the sixth (unelected) council member and gift from God was the last straw. Split votes all over next election. Leece wins but who is second will be interesting. It will be a nastier election than most. Maybe the annointed will win one last round, enjoy their cigars, fancy restaurants, and fine homes but then it will end for sure.


CM PRESS # 127

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