Category Archives: Our Town

Meanwhile Back @ The Ranch – Part 4

Grossly overfed…

Yes, Friends, FFFF still has some catching up to do, what with being sued by the legal beagles at the crack I Can’t believe It’s a Law Firm of Jones & Mayer. Enduring legal attacks from the the people whom you are paying to represent you is pretty annoying. Sort of like a boil on the butt – aggravating but not life threatening.

It Wasn’t Here a Minute Ago

So now I belatedly draw your attention to the ongoing saga of the Fullerton College Stadium From Nowhere, a sad tale that has been going on, seemingly forever. FFFF first wrote about it, here, over ten years ago. We’ve been opining on this brainless proposal ever since.

Back then we noticed that the proposed football stadium emerged out of nothing – never mentioned in the environmental impact documents connected to the bond expansion projects, a blatant oversight that would have slipped through if nobody had been watching. Then, as now, the clueless Trustees of the North Orange County Community College district are looking for ways to use up the bond money they have chiseled out of us in two massive bond floatations.

Nothing intelligent was forthcoming…

In the latest news, the trustees have finally been forced to actually approve, in public, this project. It first passed in October by a slender 4-3 majority that included the support from Fullerton’s Molly McClanahan, who has never said no to a bureaucratic scheme, no matter how hare-brained. For McClanahan the answer to outraged neighbors was to halve the size of the stadium capacity, splitting Solomon’s baby right down the middle. Good idea right? No, Molly, dear, because if you took the time to really understand the situation you would know that the campus doesn’t need a football stadium at all, no matter how many stooges are lined up in front of you in a big hurry to waste tens of millions of dollars.

Fullerton already has two plausible venues for Fullerton JC football, the stadium at CSUF paid for by the City, and the stadium at Fullerton High School right across the damn street. Of course there is no need to play games in Yorba Linda, and no need to build thousands of seats for people who will never show up for an FJC sporting event of any kind.  But let us not stand in the way of progress with common sense or facts. Rather, let’s get on the Hornet bandwagon and follow the lead of our eminently able educrats.

Meanwhile, Back @ The Ranch – Part 3

dick-jones

Mudslide and Mayer. Staying awake long enough to sign the invoice…

Fighting your own incompetent and belligerent government can be distracting. And so rather than be distracted, I’ve been playing catch-up with some more of the doings of our idiocracy since the City’s legal lizards tried to stomp on our 1st Amendment rights.

Back on October 1, our esteemed council took on the business of people camping out in their cars. Naturally, the problem needed to be institutionalized, and institutionalized it was – by giving the Illumination Foundation a contract up to $100,000 to run a site-specific car and RV park. FFFF correspondent T-REX covered the story, here.

Play it again, Ken…

With their usual political courage, the council directed that their City Manager, Ken Domer, could decide the location and thereby let a bureaucrat insulate them from the repercussions of their own decision.

Now that location is known – the alley and public parking between the historic Western marketing Building and the Elephant Packing House, a building on the National Register of Historic Places.

Maybe the less said, the better…

Well, fine, say I. This site is directly adjacent to the crown jewel of Fullerton’s Failures, the so-called Union Pacific Park, or, as it is charmingly referred to by neighbors, The Poison Park. it seems right and proper that the City deposit one failure next to another, which is already situated across Harbor Boulevard from one of Fullerton’s first Redevelopment boondoggles, the Allen Hotel eyesore.

Redevelopment Redux…

And stay tuned for episode 4, in which the Poison Park returns to the agenda, and the Fullerton City Council steps on its own weenie again.

Meanwhile, Back @ the Ranch – Part 1

Don’t let the size fool you. This one’s mean…

As you Friends can imagine the FFFF  industrial complex has been engaged, mano a mano, with the yapping legal beagles employed by the City.

But now I take a break from the marblemouthed drone of Dick  Jones’s lies  to catch up our Dear Readers with other events of the past few months. If you supposed that the spotlight of media attention on its legal mischief has caused Fullerton politicians and bureaucrats to call a pause to its idiotic endeavors, boy, would you be wrong.

Be sure to visit the roof garden…the view of the auto repair shop next door will be amazing!

In October, the proposed dee-veloper of a “boutique” hotel on a parking lot next to the Santa Fe Depot gave a show for us rubes.

You may recall this dubious project – Doug “Bud” Chaffee’s parting gift to us: approval of an exclusive negotiating agreement based on the developer’s unsolicited proposal for a hotel on what is now a parking lot. Nobody had ever heard of this bold impresario before, but no matter. Jennifer Fitzgerald has always wanted one of these “boutique” hotels, even though it was never in the Transportation Center Specific Plan she kept foisting on us all those years.

One of these people is a tax and spender. So is the other…

In case you don’t remember, I bring your attention to the record of our dimwitted and unintelligible mayor, Jesus Quirk Silva, who changed his vote from the previous meeting to make this absurdity move along. He even made up fake “experts” who supposedly changed his mind.

Anyhow, it seems this newly minted “hotelier” thinks downtown Fullerton is “dilapidated” and needs his special kind of remedy – a boutique hotel for all those fancy swells who haunt DTF’s exclusive nightclubs and other highfalutin venues. The pictures, however, suggest a six story stucco box with some brick veneer stuck on the front to satisfy the locals sensibilities.

Carpenter ants are a nuisance if not properly controlled…

And at this meeting a strange apparition appeared: a bunch of carpenter union goons in jobsite safety vests. Presumably their presence was meant to impress upon the assembled citizenry how necessary such city-supported boondoggles are to their well-being.  It’s become common for this in Anaheim, but this is ridiculous. It wasn’t even a public hearing where such theatrics might persuade the more feeble-minded decision maker.

Apparently, word has not yet got out from City hall about whether this harebrained scheme is going to be subsidized with free or discounted land, but I’d be willing to bet on that. After all, this City is not for sale. If you’re connected with the city council you just step up and take what you want.

Homing The Homeless Via The Illuminati

The Voice of OC has a detailed story about how our city council approved giving half a million bucks to something called the Illumination Foundation to acquire and operate a homeless shelter somewhere in Fullerton.

Provide Your Own Caption

As usual Jennifer Fitzgerald and Jan Flory pretended to care about the fact that the public has not been informed of the location of this place even though they know very well where it is. In the end they went along with their brethren Jesus Silva and Ahmad Zahra and voted 4-0 to commit $500,000 to this philanthropic endeavor (their philanthropy, our money). Bruce Whitaker was missing in action.

I really care about you. No, wait. That’s wrong…

Of course Fitzgerald is running for re-election next year in District 1, so we can be certain the proposed property won’t be anywhere near her house, or that of Flory.

A Disturbing Story…

 

 

Missing person? Well, they better not show up. Or else…

The cops always ask us, when we dare to criticize their unlawful, corrupt,or incompetent behavior: who are you going to call when you need help? Sometimes the question evolves into a statement: I hope we’re gonna be there when you need us. Then it always comes across as a thinly veiled bit of extortion on the part of those sworn to uphold “public safety,” and are taking public money (lots of it) to do so. I’m reminded of the mob shakedown racketeer: jeez, it will be a real shame if something is happening to youse guy’s nice bisness.

But enough small talk. FFFF received correspondence today from a Fullerton resident who believes he recently made a big mistake calling the FPD instead of just relying on the kindness of strangers.

Here is the story in his very own words – as addressed to the Police Chief, the City Council and the District Attorney.

 

Date: Sunday, September 29, 2019

To: Fullerton Police Chief, City Council Members, Orange County District Attorneys Office

From: Toby R Oliver, Fullerton resident

            A call by me to the Fullerton Police Department last night for help in finding a mother and two-year old son has exploded into at hellish nightmare after FPD Sergeants decided to arrest said mother for doing nothing more than getting lost.

            My wife and mother of our three sons, Pranee Sribunruang, now sits in the Santa Ana Jail on $100,000 bail, charged with felony child endangerment because two Fullerton Police Sergeants decided it was their duty to put her there after she went for a walk, got lost and took several hours to make it back home.

            FPD Sergeants Brandon Clyde and Emmanuel Pulido pitched a mission of help and concern when I met them out front of our home last night, pulling out all the stops to help find Pranee and our two-year-old son Leo. Then just as the Sheriff’s Department blood hound was about to be given her scent, Pranee stepped out of a vehicle that had pulled up, driven by a good semaritan who found her and Leo at a gas station and brought them home.

            This is when it all changed.

            Immediately, Pranee was someone who had done something wrong. Forcing her to sit on the curb, out came a thosand questions from the officers. Where did you go? What were you doing? Who were you with? “What do you mean you wanted to walk to Norwalk, you can’t walk to Norwalk,” Sergeant Pulido spewed. I tried to step in, and the officers pulled me away, saying this and that about needing to talk to her separately. One of the junior officers brought me aside and tried to calm me down, “We just want to help her, find out what’s going on,” he said. “Go inside and I’ll call you out in a minute.”

            I waited a few minutes, went back outside and Pranee was gone. I asked where she was. “She is being arrested,” they said. “For what,” I replied, “which car is she in?” They wouldn’t tell me, and they wouldn’t tell me what she was being charged with. “You’ll find out Tuesday,” one of them said. Then I saw her head up against the back side window of one of the patrol cars. I went toward her, grabbed at the window and said “babe.” I didn’t know what to say. It had all gone horribly wrong, so quick. And I was responsible because I had called the FPD for their help.

            Before I could do anything else, one of the officers jumped in the car and tore off down the street, leaving me there looking after her. I still didn’t really understand what was happening. This was supposed to be about finding Pranee and Leo. Now they were taking her away before I could even hug her.

            Pranee is the kindest person I know. Her life is about showing kindess to others. Everyone she meets falls in love with her and her kind spirit. She had never been arrested before. She never even had a speeding ticket. No misdemeanors, no arguments with anyone (except me, her husband), and certainly never any child neglect or endangerment. The only way you knew she was mad at you was when she didn’t speak to you. Now she sits in the Santa Ana County Jail thanks to Sergeants Pulido and Clyde, and our family is torn apart.

            The officers asked me earlier in the night, “has she ever threatened to harm herself or her son.” No I said emphatically. Her and I have had our issues, as most couples do. And she has experienced some depression recently, and we are working on this and trying to seek some mental health treatment. All this I told the officers, but sergeants Clyde and Pulido took this to mean something very different.

            There was no harm to my son Leo. There was no endangerment, unless walking on the sidewalk at night is felony endangerment in today’s Southern California. Clyde and Pulido just didn’t like her explanation that she wanted to walk to Norwalk to see a friend and trade jewelry. I had explained to them that I had her only debit card because I had misplaced mine the day before, or, she told the officers, she would have taken Uber. Her phone had no service, so she couldn’t call us. It just didn’t add up for Clyde and Pulido so they decided “she met the criteria” and ripped apart our family, just at the moment we were reunited.

            Now, I realize the worse thing I did that night was to call FPD, because in the end she made it home on her own – even though we were all very worried – and we would all be home together tonight enjoying each other. Instead FPD has torn our family apart, and we are lost. Never will I seek the aide of FPD again.

            And one last thing, I don’t blame Clyde and Pulido as much as I blame the FPD. Where would they get this attitude, this aggressive nature? Where would they get the idea that somebody needed to go to jail in this situation. This is training that comes from the top, and that is your real problem Police Chief and City Councilmembers. Something very rotten is at the heart of your police department, and you need to do something about it.

Toby R Oliver

Now of course this is only Mr. Oliver’s story, but as stories go, it seems to have a degree of verisimilitude. The City will have its own version of the tale, no doubt, even if we are never allowed to see it.

Please note Mr. Oliver’s two conclusions: namely, that it would have been far better for him to have never called the Fullerton Police Department at all; and that there must be an ingrained culture of aggression and inhumanity in the department. As to the first conclusion, I leave that for others to determine. As to the second issue, those of us watching the FPD and the way it operates, have long ago detected a wide vein of callousness that accompanied the criminal and abusive behavior by its employees.

So what will come of all this except embarrassment for his family and big legal bills for Mr. Oliver? He won’t get any satisfaction from his communicants, that’s for sure, or even an apology. No, for the FPD admits of no error as its careening incompetence smashes across the lives of the people who have had the misfortune to be in their way.

 

The Taxman Cometh

There it goes…

Folks here at FFFF have been prognosticating a new tax for several years. Even as councilcreatures Jennifer Fitzgerald and Jan Flory lied to the public by telling them the budget was balanced, we’ve been watching the strategic reserve fund dwindle away to almost nothing, leveling off last year only because so many positions were vacant.

The fact is that ever-escalating “public safety” pay and benefits, and a ruinous CalPERS pension debt have created what budget bean counters call a structural deficit; meaning, that the annual red-ink baths are a permanent condition that you can’t weasel your way out of selling  marginal city-owned properties.

And so the harsh and inescapable reality has finally come home, like a wayward vulture, to roost. And harsh realities always trump the happy lies of politicians. It’s just a matter of time.

Silva 2018 Meddling

And that is why so many people have begun to hear stories that Councilcreature Jesus “Don’t Call Me Jeesis” Silva is sending up the trial balloon of a sales tax on the November 2020 general election ballot. The choice of that date is cynical since the General Election is will produce an electorate much more sympathetic to tax and spend policies of liberals like Silva, Ahmad Zahra, Flory and of course Fitzgerald. The seeds will be officially sown during the 2020-21 budget kabuki next spring. I am giving huge odds.

They always cleaned up after me!

It’s going to happen. Zahra and Silva are not up for re-election so they must figure they’re safe; Flory is the lamest of lame ducks, a flightless bird, in fact, and thoughtful Friends have already suggested that she was put back on the council precisely for an automatic yes vote on a new tax. After all Flory’s first love has always been public emplyees.

And this leaves Fitzgerald, an erstwhile Republican free to oppose the vote putting the tax on the ballot in order to unburden herself of running for re-election with the tax monkey on her back – exactly where it belongs.

The pieces are now pretty much in place. The only question is how much the FPD Culture of Corruption and their buddies lounging in the “firehouse” are willing to invest in their shakedown.

The Dysfunction of Downtown Fullerton

Friends for Fullerton’s Future just received a disturbing story accompanied by a photograph that seems to encapsulate the Downtown Fullerton experience:

Hey, FFFF, I wanted to send along a story about what happened to me a few weeks ago. About 2 am a friend and I were walking along the north side of Commonwealth. Across the street we could see some kind of free-for-all going on. Then the crowd ran off leaving two people lying on the ground. By the time we crossed over to see what the damage was, the Fullerton police had arrived. The two people, a guy and a woman, were bloodied and obviously beaten. One of the cops saw me observing the scene and asked if I wanted to be arrested.

Rather than provide information about what we had seen, we decided to move on. But before we left I turned around and took this picture showing the woman pleading with four cops who appeared indifferent to whatever physical abuse she had suffered.

Sad. 

Yes, Friend, it is sad. Our “leaders” have created, nurtured, and encouraged a culture of mayhem where sometimes it’s hard to tell the victim from the perpetrator and where the cops are seemingly anesthetized to the weekly blood bath.

Return to the Pinewood Stairs

“Pine Wood Stairs” looked a lot better in concept than in reality…

Follow us back, gentle Friends, as we revisit the construction horror show known as The Pinewood Stairs. It’s been a year-and-a-half since we frightened you with the design and construction fiasco of the Pinewood Stairs at Hillcrest Park.

FFFF photo documented the sorry project even before the embarrassing party the city threw for itself since the contractor had failed to secure the contruction site – even though there were obvious safety issues.

In that sad saga we showed images of the many deficiencies and manifest failures by a small army of designers, city staff, contract construction managers, contractors, city inspectors, and of course, a city council woefully derelict in its duty to the public. We also shared the attempts by City Hall and its amen choir in the community to pretend that everything was just peachy.

And so we ventured out on a proactive foot patrol to see what effect the intervening eighteen months may have had on this dismal boondoggle. What we found was not shocking, for our sense of shock at the ineptitude of our City’s park and engineering departments dissipated years ago.

The structure is noticeably creaking, treads are wobbly and handrails are coming loose. This barely two-year old ramshackle pile of lumber is showing unmistakable signs of decrepitude and neglect. Its creators have moved on to new ventures.

What did we find?

Uncorrected code violations like tread width? Check.

The top of the stairs is a bad place for a code violation…

Failed irrigation? Check.

The hills are alive with…no, they aren’t…

Uncontrolled erosion? Check.

Erosion is an all natural process…

Risk management potential? Check.

A trip and a lawsuit are coming…

No correction of substandard design and construction? Check.

Close enough for Fullerton government work…

New maintenance problems? Check.

Two years old. Happy birthday Pinewood Stairs!

And this:

Handrail, meet bracket. Aw, close enough…

And of course:

It wants to reach out and grab ya…

Of course it isn’t straight. Griffin Structures specialty…

All askew:

A light post not even fit for a drunk…

More Good Times; Stompin’ at the Slidebar

Who’s on first?

A couple of weeks ago Jeremy Popoff’s Slidebar employees and clientele provided more examples of the sort of high class behavior favored by our city council and particularly our lobbyist/councilcreature Jennifer Fitzgerald who has been running cover for Popoff for years and years. You may recall that Slidebar has never gotten the required CUP even as city officials like Fitzgerald, Bruce Whitaker and Party Planner Ted White have schmoozed and petted its miscreant owner.

Hiding the tats won’t help…

Everybody seems to be ignoring Slidebar’s violation of planning and nuisance laws until the laws can be watered down so much even a professional douchebag can slime by without comment.

Here’s the video

At the outset you can see a bouncer on theft serially pound some hapless dude already on the ground and then go for a head stomp for good measure.

In the open-air saloon known as Downtown Fullerton it’s often virtually impossible to distinguish between the bad behavior of the bar-hopping patrons and the low-lifes hired to control them.

 

Profiles in Courage

During a quick stop at the on-line Fullerton Observer I read an article by Jane Rands about a dope forum held by the folks at NUFF – an organization of mostly geriatric liberals whose mission seems to be to promote safely pro-government candidates and causes. Aha, thought I, perhaps someone will stand up for the rights of the people of California who have voted twice for marijuana legalization and twice have been thwarted, whenever possible, by the Drug Warrior/Prison Industrial Complex.

Weed Tribunal

The three members of a panel, selected by who knows who, were Ahmad Zahra, Temp Fullerton Top Cop Bob Dunn, and some dude named Richard Ham about whom I know nothing.

Whatever hopes I had about this get together were quickly dashed reading the article. Smilin’ Zahra, it seems, once got a prescription for medical weed for his fibromyalgia, but was too chicken to try it. Scary stuff. Ever the wordy equivocator, Zahra seemed to be all for lots of regulation because gosh darn it, the kids have already been exposed to cannabis by illicit shops popping up next to schools.

The large and seemingly self-satisfied Chief Dunn, who used to be a spokeshole for the notorious Anaheim Police Department, gave the usual cop-blather about the evils of drugs (kiddies were getting into mom and dad’s digestible stash!) and reminding Fullerton’s tremulous seniors that drug driving is a crime. In typical police fashion he suggested that a confused public causes his boys “a lot of effort with little return.” Same ol’ bullshit the cops have been peddling for 60 years. In a grand gesture of philanthropy, however, he did let it be known that he and his posse intended to follow the law. Gee thanks, Bob.

The third member of the Dope Troika was Mr. Ham, a Korean business guy in some sort of hotel business. Good thing he was there, because somebody was able to point out the all the flaws in the present system where cities are allowed to opt-out of legalization and the ultimate consequences of California ridiculous 2016 referendum: the maintenance of an illegal, underground system of cultivation and distribution.

Zahra proclaimed the meeting a “good start” begging the question of why in the world anyone needs to start considering these issues. Why there is any confusion about marijuana in this state after over twenty years of legalization? It’s because the cops and the cowardly politicians don’t want clarity, they don’t want freedom and they don’t want to be deprived of the seizure asset income they get from the War on Drugs.

Mr. Zahra did accomplish one thing. Because of the presence of Mayor Jesus and Jan Flory he warned of the dangers of a Brown Act violation, chasing our stalwart mayor out of the room.