By Charles Lam
By R. Scott Moxley
By Taylor Hamby
By Matt Coker
By R. Scott Moxley
By Charles Lam
By LP Hastings
By Taylor Hamby
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Before I could get the shit-eatin' grin off my face and thank Dave Wielenga for his exposé on the Orange County Sanitation District's (OCSD) "Push Poop Poll" ("Run It Up the Poop Poll," May 3), he meted out another dynamite piece ("Flush Twice—It's a Long Way to Huntington Beach" May 10), questioning why some members of the OCSD's Bored of Directionless are so pliable, gullible and willing to follow general manager Blake Anderson into oblivion.
Communication at OCSD is actually wanton propaganda that spews faster than the sewage at the end of the outfall pipe just a hop, skip and a dump from my front door. The district has created more spin than the Mad Hatter's Tea Cups at the Great Rat Place—scuttled studies, skewed surveys and mastered subterfuge. Like a wise man said, "The only difference between science fiction and reality is science fiction has to have some element of plausibility."Don McGee
Allen Trautloff, you're a fucking moron. I just read your pathetic piece on Dave Matthews ("The Whine, the Howl," May 10). Why didn't you save everyone time and just write that you're a Nazi-like, narrow-minded piece of white trash? That would have been much more amusing than the bullshit you tried to write in this article. How does it feel to be so close-minded and insecure about your penis size? I hope bad things happen to you for many years. I would insert information on why Dave Matthews is one of the most gifted musicians to come around in awhile, but you're not good enough for any more of my time.Jeremy
Allen Trautloff responds: Jeremy, I never would have let you near my penis if I knew you were the type to kiss and tell.LARRY QUITE CONTRARY
Anthony Pignataro raises a critical issue surrounding the development of the Northern Sphere in Irvine ("Great Pork," May 10). Creating 12,000 new residential dwellings and a huge commercial center will generate as much traffic and environmental impacts as the airport plan we fought for 10 years. It doesn't have to be this way. The site is composed of "banked units" from other downsized planning areas, and the Irvine City Council is authorized to deny the transfer of such units. But Mayor Larry Agran and his council majority are allowing this plan to speed through the planning process.Christina Shea
R. Scott Moxley, who's emerging as the county's star investigative reporter, e-mailed me with questions about David Brock's long-ago piece on Larry Agran ("There Really Is a Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy!" May 3). Moxley gets much right, but I worry he slipped into Brockism himself when telling the story.
As I told Moxley, my brother-in-law, Howard Klein, and I did visit Brock in Washington, D.C. We did urge him to investigate Agran, the mayor of Irvine, whose outsized ambitions suggested national interest (an intuition later vindicated by Agran's preposterous presidential campaign). We did not, as I also told Moxley, go to Washington with that purpose in mind. You make it sound so conspiratorial. Nor did we urge Brock to do a "hit piece." We urged him to investigate fairly based on evidence we'd accumulated and which I was having trouble persuading The Orange County Register's newsroom to explore. Quoth Moxley, quoting me: "'What we needed was an investigative reporter unencumbered by the biases evident in the newsroom,' said Grubbs, who believed his paper's reporters privately sympathized with Agran and his 'socialistic' bent." Excuse me, but what I told Moxley (in an e-mail I've since deleted) was that I suspected the newsroom rather liked having such a "heterodox" figure with pronounced socialistic views planted in the heart of conservative Orange County. But Moxley portrays me as imagining our newsroom to be a den of socialistic Agranistas. I didn't.
I had established the Register's editorial page to be in opposition to Agran's designs. The newsroom was little inclined—because of the sacred bifurcation of news and editorial and because it understood itself to be overcoming a reputation for slanting to the right—to extend that position editorially. That's when David Brock, just making a name for himself, clicked into mind. Brock was practicing a hybrid of investigative journalism with a political perspective. If The American Spectator published it first, then I could reprint it in the Register's commentary section. David now disavows the story, not because its contents were wrong, but because of its provenance. I know and worked with many of the same Washington conservatives who launched David's career. And whereas I, too, was sometimes put off by the more censorious ones, including the gay-bashers who made David so miserable, I can tell you that he treats his former colleagues in the same sloppy and irresponsible way that he says he treated Anita Hill et al. Did he treat Larry Agran that way? All I can tell you is that Moxley's splendid recent exposé of Agran's hypocritical connections to the Irvine Co. and other developers fits seamlessly with Brock's "Evil Emperor of Irvine," now 12 years old.K.E. Grubbs Jr.
R. Scott Moxley responds:Grubbs accuses me of slipping into "Brockism" because I've supposedly misrepresented the Washington, D.C., meeting he and his brother-in-law had with Brock. Brock told me the two flew there to see him; Grubbs told me otherwise. If I had wanted to make it "sound so conspiratorial" for Grubbs, I certainly would have made a big deal about that contradiction. I didn't. If he rereads my story, he'll note I focused merely on the meeting itself. On the issue of theRegister newsroom's putative pro-Agran sentiments: I am perplexed by Grubbs' belief that I skewed his quote. He stated—and I'll quote from his e-mail to me—that he "suspected" the paper's newsroom "rather liked Larry's heterodox leftism." In the next sentence, he described Agran's "socialist bent." The terms were his, not mine.