Call to Anaheim’s YEAR OF REVOLUTION.


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Happy Halloween, all you Anaheim voters who care about good honest government – government of the people, by the people and for the people!

As I write this letter, we have 369 days till Election Day 2020, and we should be using each one of those 369 days doing something to clean up our city and depose the Sidhu Council Dictatorship that’s oppressing and suppressing this City of Kindness.

Oh. Did you miss the last council meeting, October 29? It really WAS historic but not in the way many of us hoped it might be. Months ago the Sidhu majority changed the rules for agendizing items for future meetings, attempting to make it difficult or impossible for Dr. Jose Moreno to get anything progressive or good-government onto the agenda. Under the new rules Jose would have to get not one but TWO other councilmembers to agree to his agenda items, and often he can only get Denise Barnes.

Well, for October 29’s meeting Jose managed to get the help of Jordan Brandman as well as Denise, so he was able to agendize FOUR important items:

  • Applying the rent-cap protections of the newly-passed AB 1482 to Anaheim’s mobile home parks which the bill doesn’t cover – this would be vitally important and helpful to the seniors in the Rancho La Paz which was purchased last year by rent-gouging billionaire John Saunders.
  • Also taking from AB 1482, which prohibits no-cause evictions but doesn’t take effect till January 1, Jose wanted to begin those protections two months early, as many unscrupulous landlords are using these two months to quickly get rid of every tenant they don’t like while they still can.
  • Releasing the appraisal of the Angels Stadium property to the public – something the very secretive Council majority has resisted doing so far, for no compelling reason they can state.
  • And also making sure the public has a 30-day review period to look at and comment on whatever deal the City makes with the Angels – our most valuable public property, reportedly worth nearly a billion dollars.

Well, you’re not going to believe what Mayor Sidhu and his three closest allies did last night when those items came up… But first we have to realize that this was planned long in advance – it couldn’t be a coincidence that the October 29 meeting was also THE FIRST ONE WHERE THEY FORCED ANYONE WHO WANTED TO GET INTO COUNCIL CHAMBERS TO GO THROUGH SECURITY AND A METAL DETECTOR.

And the place was packed anyway – mostly with about 120 Rancho La Paz seniors who’ve been having to choose lately between their medications and paying their jacked up rents … and also several Anaheim residents who have recently been given eviction notices for no good cause.

Tough shit, said Mayor Sidhu and Councilmemebers Faessel, Kring and O’Neil. As soon as the two hours of public comments were up, Sidhu announced that he was TABLING ALL FOUR ITEMS.  No debate, no discussion, no vote. Kring and O’Neil very much enjoyed taunting Jose and Denise from the sidelines as they voted to shut down all popular recourse, and Stephen Faessel uttered not a word of explanation as he stubbornly pounded the FOURTH NAIL IN THE COFFIN of seniors, renters, and open government.

We have never seen anything this bad at a Council meeting.

A Side Note on Jordan Brandman

You’ll notice that in the picture at the top of this story, I blacked out Jordan’s picture.  For a couple of reasons.  He did give Jose the third vote at the previous meeting, to get all these important items agendized for at least discussion on Oct. 29.  And he voted, silently, against Sidhu’s tabling of each of those items on the 29th.  In doing all this he was pretty much keeping one of his promises to the DPOC, a promise that he hasn’t always kept.  Of course it’s easy for him to make those votes when he knows he’ll be safely in the minority, and there’s no way to know what he really thinks about any of those issues.  The most disturbing thing was how happy and carefree Jordan was the whole time, as Jose was barely containing his fury, Denise was struggling to talk through tears, and democracy was crushed.  Seemed like just another day to Jordan.  We have to remember, in the coming election, not to start thinking he’s on our side.

Brothers and sisters, it’s time to start our 2020 Revolution!

  • Faessel needs to get beaten like a drum by someone we can trust.
  • Kring (termed out thank God) has to be replaced by someone we can trust.
  • We really need to look at the possibility of RECALLING SIDHU
  • And we need to DEFEND the very decent Denise Barnes in district 1.

I call (do I hear a second and a third?) for DEMONSTRATIONS outside City Hall before each Council meeting, at 4pm. And there’s so much else we need to do. The regular folks of Anaheim don’t pay enough attention to what their city government is doing to them, and we need to let them know.

We’ll be discuss this at length at our next Anaheim Democratic Club meeting (although all these concerns are totally non-partisan), THIS SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 12:15 to 2 at the Haskett Branch Library. Jose will be there too with his reports, insights and ideas, but this revolution is gonna take us ALL.

If you can’t make that Saturday meeting, Jose will be holding his usual pre-Council workshop on Monday evening, 6-8, at the Anaheim Brewery.

Tue 5, City Hall, 4pm – Pre-Council PRESS CONFERENCE AND PROTEST!

5pm – COUNCIL MEETING with Jose’s campaign reform ordinance – unless the Majority “tables” that too!


About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official troubador of both Anaheim and Huntington Beach (the two ends of the Santa Ana Aquifer.) Performs regularly both solo, and with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at vernpnelson@gmail.com, or 714-235-VERN.