Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Mr. U. Know-Who's Vendetta Against the Daily Pilot

Human natur
e is interesting, don't you think?

For example, there's a guy here in town - he calls himself Mr. U. Know-Who - who writes a Costa Mesa-centric blog who has a very hard place in his heart for the Daily Pilot, our newspaper of record for the Newport-Mesa area.

This guy is a prolific writer, but his pontifications were absent from the pages of the Daily Pilot for a long, long time. The
re was a time, shortly after I first began writing to the Pilot on local issues many years ago, that the editors would amuse themselves by pairing us up as their version of The Odd Couple - placing his commentaries side-by-side with mine. That was in the days before the Daily Pilot blog, but I have no doubt that juxtapositioning would have evoked many comments from readers. Then, a couple months ago, his views began appearing once again - perhaps due to a change in management at the Pilot. Lately, though, we've not seen his words published on those pages - and have not missed them at all.


I think I understand the problem. I think - my opinion, mind you - that this guy is peeved a
t the editors of the Daily Pilot because they recently imposed a registration requirement on those of us who wish to post comments on their articles, editorials and commentaries. This spoiled his fun because he was prolific on those internet pages - posting under several names on the same comment thread in a twisted attempt to bolster his feeble views and make it appear that his views were widely supported. He immediately began whining on his blog about the requirement to be identified. He was much more comfortable throwing stones while hiding behind a tree. Since the registration requirement the volume of posted comments has dropped off but the level of dialogue has been elevated since only those folks willing to be identified with their comments - if only by the Pilot editors - now appear.


Now, with
the impact of the purchase of the Daily Pilot's parent company, The Tribune Companies, still unclear he's begun speculating about the future of the Pilot and it's staff. The tone of his mini-rants has been negative - apparently he's hoping for the demise of the Pilot as we know it.

It the past couple days he's published a couple blog entries, which can be read HERE a
nd HERE, cheering on the new owner, Sam Zell, as he goes about de-constructing the beleaguered Tribune Companies and it's component parts.


Actually, Mr. Who's reaction doesn't surprise me at all. It's typical of his bullying
style. On his blog, and in the vile internet essays he publishes at places like former KKK leader David Duke's web site, he bemoans the demise of the white race and lashes out at anyone who criticizes him. He's the same way in his dealings here in Costa Mesa - berating everyone who doesn't toe his line, including council members and commissioners that he has supported in the past.

I can't help but chuckle as he rants and raves, particularly against the Daily Pilot. That organization is doing things right - and it stands out in the crowd among
the various Tribune properties as such.

What I find curious is that Mr. Who has attempted for more than a decade to r
e-create Costa Mesa in the image he prefers - pure white. Of course, we all know that's not going to happen, so I wonder why he just doesn't seek happiness among folks with a common complexion someplace like Sweden or Norway. Heck, parts of Idaho might even suit him. I doubt moving is in the cards for him because is seems he's only happy when he's causing discontent in this community. What a sad, sad man.

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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Red-Light Violations Ignored

The Orang
e County Register, in a report by Jennifer Muir today, tells us that the red-light camera program as currently administered in Orange County, is an abysmal failure, with thousands of drivers who ignore the tickets having their cases dismissed while those who identified themselves faced hefty fines, driving school and possible increases in their insurance rates.


One segment jumped right off the page at me. Early in the report there is the following parag
"Because of the failure to follow up, taxpayers in some cities are subsidizing the cost of the red light cameras. When the cost of paying the camera vendors is subtracted from ticket revenue, Costa Mesa appears to have lost more than $250,000 for the year ending October 2007; Laguna Woods appears to be short $22,000. And those numbers don't include the cost of city personnel."

Now, that really ticks me off!


When this program was first launched I thought it was a good idea - a way to effectively cite those careless clowns among us who brazenly run red lights throughout our city. I recall thinking to myself that this is a great way to make folks much more aware of the dangers of running red lights and, hopefully, making our city a safer place in which to drive. Now we are told that, because it's too difficult to follow-up on these people, we just let them get away with it and - even more distressing - it's costing the city a quarter of a million bucks a year, to boot!

This issue has been discussed by the Costa Mesa City Council in the past and it's time to address it again. If the scofflaws are simply thumbing their noses - or using another digit to express their disregard for the law - we need to address this issue. If the darn lights are actually costing us money maybe we should just cut our losses and get rid of them. If we don't, we'd sure better find a way to make the system work.


The entire article can be found HERE. You may have to register with The Register to read it.

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