Larry Agran's Sabotage Squad

[Moxley Confidential] The sneaky campaign to save Democrats' control of the Great Park failed but kept Beth Krom on the Irvine City Council

In advance of voting, I could only report that somebody had hidden the money trail because Gilliard disingenuously reported that Dennis J. Sammut, owner of San Bruno-based casino Artichoke Joe's, paid for the pro-Daigle operation. Why would a savvy businessman spend $55,000 on a losing candidate seven hours south in Irvine—especially when he was trying to win an expensive, local gaming initiative in the San Jose area?

Alas, Sammut didn't give a hoot about Daigle. Here's what happened: In exchange for Sammut participating in the Irvine election-money shell game, an Orange County company sent an equal amount, $55,000, to his gaming campaign. That entity? By golly, it was Strader's Starpointe Ventures.

Back in her peculiar la-la land, Krom bused in an army of elderly ladies to a Jan. 8 council meeting so they could regurgitate her stance that the Republican takeover wasn't a voter mandate to clean up soiled Great Park affairs. The ladies dutifully whined that diminished Krom/Agran power was—you can't make this up—the end of democracy.

See Mickadeit's column for good coverage of the event. But, perhaps because he made the Strader scheme verboten, the Reg columnist let Krom escape with a despicable lie. From the dais, she said the new GOP 3-2 majority couldn't have a mandate because she received the most votes in the council race that elected her and Republican Christina Shea.

"Yeah, I myself have taken exception to the [mandate assertion] because I checked the [vote tallies]," declared Krom, who called her opponent "reprehensible."

You know what's reprehensible? The same apparatus that gave us Daigle gave us Evan Chemers as a Republican decoy in the council race—and that sabotage paid off. The pro-Daigle operation touted Chemers' candidacy in mailings that took 17,167 votes from the two real Republicans, Shea and Lynn Schott.

Without that trickery, Krom would have been booted from the council, Republicans would have enjoyed a 4-1 majority, and the public wouldn't have had to stomach a pathetic excuse for a lack of Great Park progress.

"We didn't have the two things that would have been so handy," a smartass Krom opined during the council meeting. "A crystal ball and a magic wand."

Nope, she and Agran merely had total control for 12 years and $230 million to, as county Supervisor Todd Spitzer aptly observed, give us a Great Park that is "a palm court, a merry-go-round and a balloon."

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kdaigle362
kdaigle362

Mr. Moxley, Mr. Strader and I met early in June I told that Ms Shea, nothing more. I looked at Mr. Strader background on the internet and found he haf supported Mr. Lalloway in 2010.

My campaign director Roger Lee insisted I run. Roger felt that this would provide me a platform that I otherwise would not have had since so many incumbents were running year after year. And guess what, it did you are still writing and discussing this story.

I had every intention of not following lockstep behind people that were dishonest. Perhaps it’s time that you try to get over this obsession with Agran and the Democrats in general and turns your sights on the reublican party. You are fond of stating over and over that Larry Agran has held power in a republican dominated populace. You are also not incorrect in pointing out the sometimes questionable tactics used by Agran to maintain power.The voting public is aware of the reputation of Mr. Agran and understands what he’s all about.If Choi and Shea were better candidates, candidates the republican base could truly get excited about, no amount of supposed “fake” candidates would derail their campaigns.The truth is the average rank and file Irvine voter sees right through Choi and Shea and realizes they’re not all that different than the democrats on the other side of the aisle. Thank you for the discussion Mr. Moxley

kdaigle362
kdaigle362

As an outsider looking to change the direction of Irvine, the insulated nature of the small group that runs our City was so diametrically opposed to any type of outsider.Why would you and both parties waste so much time and money at an outsider candidate running on a shoe-string budget? Perhaps it has to do with what I represent and what Irvine so badly needs, real change.

Your continued insistence that my candidacy for Irvine mayor was insincere or designed to appropriate Republican votes from Mr.Choi is false. Ms. Shea was well aware of my intention to run for public office since 2010, yet she remain silent, from Ms. Shea:

From: christina@christinashea.com [mailto:christina@christinashea.com]Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2012 11:46 PM To: Katherine Daigle Subject: Re: I also emailed the WVA “ Thanks but I told myself if I lose here o won't run and I won't but I will help u and lynn for sure,, “---Original Message------

You continue to publish these untruths without ever having contacted me directly. Your story isn’t journalism. It is apparent to me you are not interested in the truth or the facts, you are only interested in maintaining a lie. Shame on you.

For the record, I am a moderate Republican, fiscal conservative, pro-business and pro-growth.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

Thanks, Roland.  It's very convenient to have (almost) the entire story in one place, especially as it argues that the Weekly's allegations that Agran got Daigle to run against him and got people to fund her campaign were directly responsible for Choi's victory.  That is indeed a key point in explaining that victory.

Just for the record -- because while you SEEM to be stating this as a fact, you leave yourself some wiggle room -- is it correct that you are asserting as a fact rather than as an opinion or supposition or fantasy that Agran did, indeed, entice Daigle into the Mayor's race and was, indeed, personally involved (even if through other agents) in arranging her funding, promotional literature, etc.  I presume that you must be asserting it as fact -- because otherwise, if you knew that you were just manufacturing innuendo that proved no such thing but still presenting as fact, this would be an extremely embarrassing article for you to have written.  But please correct me if I am wrong about your state of mind here.

I'm disappointed only that you left out of this exultant story the part about your beating the drum for the Republican attack against Agran trying to make Irvine's parks a save haven for child molesters, when in fact he only favored trying to push what has now been found (yes, only at the trial court level, but still) to be an unconstitutional law towards becoming a narrower and more arguably constitutional law.  And you slammed him, slammed OC District Attorney Tony Rackauckas for objecting to the misuse of his statements on the topic in a vicious, out-of-context, attack mailer against Agran, and you just kept on slamming.  Really, Roland -- if you're proud of everything else, you should still be every bit as proud of that as well.

I don't know the answer to the question that rpmcestmoi1 poses about you below, but I do remember Hal Holbrook's advice to the journalists in All the President's Men about following the money.  Of course, they eventually connected Richard M. Nixon personally to directing payoffs; you in this situation, by contrast, just invite your readership to use our imaginations.

rpmcestmoi1
rpmcestmoi1

When did you become such a right winger?  When the Voice people (term used loosely) started signing the checks??

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@kdaigle362 

I am faling to follow your logic since both Choi and Shea were elected and you didn't even come close.  Kathrine, you really should find a better pastime than whining and snivelling on the internet. 

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@kdaigle362 Hi again Katherine: you are down playing your secret, behind the scenes contact with Agran re-election agent, Great Park private housing lobbyist Patrick Strader, and overstating the role of Ms. Shea. I understand. You got yourself into an embarrassing mess. You probably do have some good intentions. But you were used by individuals far more politically sophisticated than yourself. If campaign consultant Roger Lee was among those who told you you could win the mayor's race, then you might consider enrolling him in an institution for idiots or (hmmmm, Mr. Lee is a veteran, liberal Democrat like Agran) applaud his skillful manipulation of your Republican candidacy into . . . yes . . . last place. Unlike Mr. Lee, I'm not in the business of spinning voters for $. Before the election I repeatedly predicted--it was not difficult--that you'd be trounced and, dear, you were. If you want to continue to pretend you weren't a tool for the disgusting, corrupt Agran machine, then, of course, go ahead. But I'm not joining that bandwagon because it's pure, ridiculous fantasy. You were (allegedly) running against Agran for mayor and yet the Agran machine spent tens of thousands of dollars touting your campaign and attacking Choi. If you continue to deny that eye-opening, irrefutable fact, then, well, I'm going to think you were part of the scam to trick the voters of Irvine and the gosh-who-me? pretense you spout is nothing but shameful BS.

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@kdaigle362Hi Katherine: I don't dismiss the possibility that you had no clue what you were doing. You were a sudden, late entry Republican in a mayor's race between two political veterans, a Republican (Choi) and a Democrat (Agran) and, despite your absurd claims otherwise, you had zero chance of winning. Anyone with a faint knowledge of 1st grade math would appreciate that your entry as a Republican would have one benefit: aiding Agran, the Democrat, by taking GOP votes from Choi. You had repeated, undisclosed campaign consultations with a lobbyist paid by a real estate firm hell bent on Agran remaining in control of the city of Irvine and the Great Park. I have the documents and no matter what you say nothing changes that reality. So in summary: At best, you got used. But not by me. You should be directing your bitching at Patrick Strader, the lobbyist who helped guide you into this mess, and his boy, Agran, one of the most slimy politicians in Orange County history. Please tell me you've confronted Patrick. Please declare that you still aren't dumb enough to believe that he secretly encouraged you to run for mayor because he--a wealthy Newport Beach lobbyist with financial interests in Agran's kindness at the Great Park and an Agran appointee to a powerful city commission--really thought you could defeat Choi and Agran. Spare me the trite lecture on journalism tell me there is a chance you can snap out of your trance. 

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@kdaigle362 

Give it a rest will you Katherine, the election is over. Scott Moxley caught you with your fingers in the cookie jar and your little charade was exposed.  Even with the help the Agranista machine arranged, you were never a serious candidate and you know it. As far as you claiming to be a Republican, I question that as well.  No self-respecting Republican would run against a candidate chosen by the Republican Party in a tough race to try and overthrow a Democrat.  Bottom line is, spare us your self-serving rheotric and fade back into oblivion.  If you behave yourself, perhaps Larry Agran will let you actually run on his slate in 2014, not that it will make any differnece.   

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@kdaigle362Katherine, it doesn't help your cause that you--a proclaimed conservative Republican wanting the public to believe your campaign was sincere and not a Democrat sabotage plant--have as your biggest defenders, a liberal Democrat blog tied to Larry Agran and Beth Krom, and a tired, obese, obnoxious, unemployed Brea temp lawyer who (couldn't make it in NYC) and is a member of the executive committee of the Orange County Democratic Party.

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@gregdiamond And here comes the Bloviator, who not only claims to know something about local politics, but also journalism as well. Just stick to your shit pool, and leave actual analysis to people who know something about this county.

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@gregdiamond You should know by now that Larry Agran never touches anything directly, so that he will have plausible denial, if it goes south. As was pointed out in the current and past articles, the Agran shill in this election was Patrick Strader. I would like to see how long Strader would hold tough if a federal investigtion were ever done? My guess is about five seconds and he would be singing like a lark. Bottom line is that the Agranista Political Machine broke down this time and now must pay the piper his just due. I suspect that once the Great Park Audit is completed Agran and Krom will be drummed out of the Corps forever, if not indicted in the process. As we say in Irvine, "It's just another day in paradise." 

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@rpmcestmoi1 Actually, we turned against Larry in 2003, long before the drunk Irish bought us—and that was the time that Larry turned into the fool he is today.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @kdaigle362 I don't see "whining and sniveling" here.  I see an apparently careful presentation of facts on her part and a seemingly increasingly energetic and rude campaign on your part to shut her down.  That sort of interaction certainly attracts my interest; I'll read on.

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@kdaigle362By the way, Katherine: Showing a portion of an email involving Christina Shea actually undermines your stupidity defense. You know damn well that Shea, a real Republican, had NO idea you secretly worked with an agent of Larry Agran, a real Democrat, to undermine the GOP ticket. Shame on you for even attempting to float that red herring as a supportive exhibit to your defense. Perhaps you should go back to taking the 5th....

kdaigle362
kdaigle362

@ltpar @kdaigle362

The lone voice in the woods, repeating and repeating the same old charges hoping beyond hope that someone actually believes him. Dart board politics once again.If you can’t get your baseless charges to stick just keep slinging them. The ironic thing is that my entire mayoral campaign based on attempting to change the tenor in Irvine politics. I think the local electorate, to a person, would agree that the endless game of “gotcha” politics is tiring, meaningless and gets away from the bigger goal of actually covering and having a real debate about the issues.

Yes I do agree with your point "the elction is over" so why are you still bloviating? And your sermon is tiring!

As a Republican, I am not going anywhere, and I do intend to run.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@rscottmoxley @kdaigle362  True, it would help her cause much more if I were not obese.  (I just got a healthy settlement check for one of my cases, though, so if your thinking that my being "unemployed" was a problem, you can revise your opinion.  And I haven't worked as a temp contract attorney for around a year and a half now, while I was establishing my own practice.  I'm going to grant you "tired," though.)

My interest in Ms. Daigle's assertions stems from the likelihood that she is right about why she ran, that whoever fed you the story about her (presuming that you didn't just come up with it yourself) was wrong, and that the truth is exculpatory of Agran and Krom.  (As I say above, I  hold out hope that if that is what the evidence shows, you will admit it and the Weekly will start to pursue the story of how you got bamboozled, if you did, and by whom.)

I would neither endorse nor vote for Ms. Daigle against an endorsed Democrat -- those are the rules for my position.  That doesn't mean that I have to think that all Republicans are liars or scum.  In Costa Mesa, for example, I believe that I was rooting for the same ones that you guys were.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@GustavoArellano @gregdiamond  I leave it to your readers to decide whether this is "bloviation" on my part or deflection of legitimate criticism by making a loud foul bleating sound on your part.

But hey, glad you're here, performing the "protecting the old prima donna no matter what he says" function that you seem to think constitutes "editing."   You actually do speak for the Weekly!  So let me pose the same question to you: are you presenting the story of Agran's supposed nefarious dealings as fact or as something in between supposition and outright fantasy?  You say below that this is the 10th anniversary of your turning on Agran, so by now you've had your time to get your act together -- do you intend your readers to believe that specific allegations that Agran caused Daigle to enter the Mayor's race and caused her campaign to be funded are actually true as opposed to an unverified theory that pleases you and helps to elect your preferred candidates?

If you didn't want people to think it was true, your integrity would have prevented you from posting it, am I right?

This is not a hard question to answer, Gustavo.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @gregdiamond What I know, Patrick, is that you and Moxley and others are presenting theories that are unfalsifiable and verging on unhinged.  Whatever lack of evidence you have you can wave away with the assurance that Agran is too clever to leave fingerprints, when the more natural assumptions are that the people in question wanted to support Agran for their own reasons -- like, for example, they actually liked the Great Park plan. Perhaps, for the sake of argument, it was in part because they thought that they would profit from it, but that doesn't make their support illegitimate on the merits -- there's nothing intrinsically wrong with anyone wanting to further the Great Park plan -- and in any event it doesn't mean that Agran was directing them one bit.

Federal investigation?  Even if Agran had directed Daigle to get onto the ballot and had wanted his colleagues to support Daigle's candidacy -- and there is no actual evidence of either, outside of your fevered accusations that "we know that he is guilty because he did this and we know that he did this because he is guilty" -- there's nothing illegal about that.  I look forward to the forensic audit as well -- and to your eating crow when it shows a clean bill of health.

The "Agran machine" was defeated this time because of enormous amounts of laundered outside money coming in from the East Coast -- hey, there's a ripe subject for an investigation! -- and because of vile yellow journalism, nicely summarized here by Moxley.  You get a pass on the latter because you're a (sincere seeming but deluded at best) political hack rather than a professional journalist.  He's supposed to know better -- and to have an editor who's actually willing to demand facts and fairness from him.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@GustavoArellano @rpmcestmoi1 Thanks for acknowledging for the record the depth and duration of your bias in reporting, Gustavo.

By the way, I have to admit that tossing around ethnic terms of derision like that does make you look a lot more manly, cabron.  Please try doing it on KCRW as well; I'm sure that it will enhance your literary reputation..

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@gregdiamond @ltpar @kdaigle362 

Greg, I have nothing but time and am in no hurry for anything.  I don't know Scott Moxley personally, but have the impression that he is savy enough to figure out if somebody was running a con on him.  That is more than we can say for you and "Dan the man?" 

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @gregdiamond @kdaigle362  "No one believes her" except two of us.  Well, that should be easy to disprove.  Do you give much thought into the factual basis of that sort of confident assertion before you unleash it?  Moxley is apparently (from what I've read here) getting the e-mails and -- my feeling this way may shock him -- I tend to think that he'll give an honest accounting of them, especially because I hope to have the next crack at them.  (That will raise questions about his original sources on the topic and whether they gave him a partial story -- but that is a discussion for another day.)

Meanwhile, you seem awfully intent on shutting down all inquiry right now, before it goes an inch further.  That's really sort of strange, Patrick.  What's your hurry to make sure that no investigation of how Moxley was led down the wrong path here, if he was, takes place?

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@gregdiamond @ltpar @kdaigle362 

What's her point, we have heard her same message several times and frankly, no one believes her except for you and "Dan the Spin Man." 

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@GustavoArellano @gregdiamond @kdaigle362 I'm defending the position that appears to be right.  (I defended Rackauckas in your pages when Moxley went after him for supposedly illegal actions, too.)  Lots of OC Democrats -- a lot of the same ones that you tussle with, as a matter of fact -- will attest that I don't defend them (in fact, quite the contrary) when I think that they they're doing wrong and I have no problem with defending a Republican (even against a Democrat, and certainly against an onion-skinned journalist) who is apparently being unfairly maligned.

Similarly, you could conceivably convince me that Agran has acted improperly -- you have just failed to do so despite being pressed for evidence.  All you give is your assurances -- and your assurances suck.  We'll see whether the e-mails that Moxley is getting corroborate her story of why she chose to run for Mayor -- and if they do, we'll see if you have the grace to admit your journalist errors rather than just changing the subject.

One of is is being a hack here, but I don't think it's me.

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@gregdiamond  @kdaigle362 And the Bloviator doesn't stop! LOVE how this Democratic hack is defending the honor of a Republican candidate...

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@ltpar No, Larry changed. He once stood up against the Irvine Co.—when he became besties with him is when the tide turned...

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@ltpar@GustavoArellano@kdaigle362Some morally corrupt, lying hacks--and I'm not addressing you Katherine--won't ever admit the obvious about Larry Agran, a disgrace to the notion of public service. 

kdaigle362
kdaigle362

@gregdiamond @rscottmoxley @kdaigle362I would be happy too. Give me a day or two and I will send them to your email address, directly. 

A few have her silly disclosure statement and according to my attorney " based upon specific false information that she knew to be false  and if by exposing her means bringing facts to the press, or the public, then yes I can, under my First Amendment rights." 

The few that have her disclosure, you may want to suggest to her that since she has nothing to fear, she will agree to have you see every one of them for the last 3 years. I will give you everyone of them, thank you both for your interest. 


kdaigle362
kdaigle362

@rscottmoxley @kdaigle362 

Mr. Moxley, finally you speak to me directly.

I would have no problem providing every email she has sent to me over the years, just ask!

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@kdaigle362 @ltpar 

Katherine, you are the one who continues to whine about how Christina Shea mistreated and threatened you.  The voters have spoken and it is your sermon that is tiring.  Get over it and run with Larry Agran in 2014.  You will fit right in with the Agranistas, that is if Larry has the nerve to run again after the results of the Audit is made public.   

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@rscottmoxley @ltpar

"STRUMmin' my PAIN with his FINgers; SINGin' my LIFE with his WORDS."

Someone may be completely delusional, but nevertheless is certainly getting better at not engaging someone else directly.  Or at least as directly. 

And yet, asserting that someone else has "the facts" is no more convincing than asserting that one has "the facts," when it all still looks like supposition and assertion.

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@ltparYou most certainly have the facts and, unlike someone else, you aren't angling for a cozy spot on Larry Agran's knee as a way to rescue a failed career, pronounced moral/ethical delusions and a miserable personal life.

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @gregdiamond Did you falsely testify against them too?

(Note: "falsely" need not imply deliberate lying, but only reckless, myopic, even psychopatholofical indifference to the blending of fact and innuendo.  It's much easier to get away with, I suppose, when you're up against severely overburdened -- by design -- public defenders.)

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @gregdiamond OK, link to them.  Or, if you can't link to them -- say, if they're not public -- perhaps you can explain both (1) how you know and (2) how you know you know, because everything I've seen just far suggests only guilt -- well, possible guilt, if anything you describe is actually unlawful -- by association.

Were you really like this as a police officer, Patrick?

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@gregdiamond 

Thanks for the hint, but unlike you, I have the facts. 

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @gregdiamond  Well, either there are no good journalists in Southern California, or there's no good story there, or you're really terrible at looking.

I won't comment on your smear against Agran there because, lacking the facts, it would be irresponsible.  Take that as a broad hint.

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@gregdiamond Greg I have been looking for a real journalist for a number of years to do an investigative article on abuse of power by your favorite guy, by having his housekeeper unarrested on a felony charge and the matter swept under the carpet.  It would have made for much more interesting reading than Agran doing what he does in every election campaign which has become "old hat."  If you run across a real journalist send them my way. 

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@ltpar @gregdiamond  Oh dear -- you haven't looked at any reports about IEs against Agran, have you?  No, while the funds came from the East, I doubt that the nominal Eastern donors had any real desire of their own to target Agran.  More likely is that -- as seems likely to have happened with the humongous Arizona IEs against Prop 30 and for Prop 32 (which also came from the East) -- it was California money being laundered out of state.  But I don't have facts to prove that, so I can't allege it as fact.

A journalist could investigate that story -- a real story, as out of state laundering of contributions would violate California law -- so if you happen to run into a real journalist you can ask them about it.

ltpar
ltpar topcommenter

@gregdiamond @ltpar Tremendous amounts of outside money was why Agran was defeated?  Guess it must have been the east coast Mafia that did Larry in?  Now, who is deluding themself?  If the audit comes back clean, I will be happy to "eat some crow," but don't be putting it on the dining table just yet.  There is an old  saying which might apply to the Agranistas and ther Great Park Con Job, "He who laughs last, laughs best."  I expect to do a lot of laughing in the future, while watching you eat that same crow sandwich you offered up to me. 

gregdiamond
gregdiamond

@rpmcestmoi1  If you please, I'd rather steer away from apophasis or paralipsis in responding to him.  (I can never remember which is which, and I mix both up with parrhesia, so I have to look it up every time.)

rpmcestmoi1
rpmcestmoi1

@gregdiamond @GustavoArellano @rpmcestmoi1 this Arellano guy is a disgrace. Is he fishing for the "lazy Spic" response? Well, he won't get it. Talk about disgusting cliches...

 
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