Democratic Campaign To “Take Back Anaheim” Is Underway

Remember the promises from supporters of by-district council elections that they would lead reduce special interest influence, bring city government closer to the people, and result in “neighbors electing neighbors” and city council members who were part of the fabric of the areas of Anaheim they represented?  It was hooey, of course – but a large majority of Anaheim voters bought it and voted for Measure L (and M, to expand the council to six members) almost a year ago.

On October 20, the Anaheim City Council adopted the council districts map generated by that same left-wing coalition — or as they like to refer to themselves, “the community.”

Anaheim council districts map

On the weekend before that vote, the Orange County Young Democrats organized a Saturday and Sunday precinct walk for Connor Traut for Chair of the West Anaheim Neighborhood Council (and Leonard Lahtinen for Vice Chair). As stated on the OCYD Facebook page:

“Join OCYD this weekend as we begin to take back Anaheim from the Republican Party, by walking in support of Trustees Connor Traut and Leonard Lahtinen to serve as Chair and Vice Chair of the West Anaheim Neighborhood Council.


The caucus-based election is next week, so we need all hands on deck for this one. Connor and Len are ready to develop a park expansion plan, expand gang prevention programs, and implement progressive policies that will benefit disadvantaged families in their neighborhoods.”

connor traut ocyd

The West Anaheim Neighborhood Council encompasses all of the newly-drawn District 1 and the part of District 2 west of Brookhurst Street:

neighborhood council map

21-year old Traut was elected last year to the Centralia School District Board of Education. Lahtinen has lived in West Anaheim since 1962, has served on the North Orange County Community College District Board of Trustees since his election to it in 1990. The retired teachers and former teachers union president represents Area 2, which encompasses West Anaheim.

West Anaheim residents who regularly attend these meetings are unaccustomed to organized campaigns for neighborhood council, and were caught off guard. Traut, following a speech promising a number of things that neighborhood council members are essentially powerless to deliver, edged out the incumbent Chair Amanda Edinger by a single vote.

Connor Traut is a nice, bright, sincere, super-smart Democratic activist who less than two years ago was an elected member of the Ladera Ranch Civic Council – 30 miles away in South Orange County. Connor’s family moved there from Anaheim in 2000, and moved back to Anaheim at the end of 2013.

Traut currently resides in District 1, and word is he intends to run for city council from that seat in 2016 (although Traut would likely step aside in favor of Councilman and 46th Congressional District candidate Jordan Brandman should the latter not make the November general election ballot). Neighborhood councils lack any real power, but “Chair, West Anaheim Neighborhood Council” would make a very good (though legally dubious) ballot title.

The “neighbors electing neighbors” promises of the council district proponents was always empty rhetoric meant to convince voters that passing Measure L would lead to electing long-time residents of their area to the city council. It’s no surprise that reality is much different. There’s little to prevent candidates from moving around the city into the most politically opportune district, regardless of where they have been living – and good luck getting any traction with charges of carpetbagging.

Connor Traut moved to Anaheim less than two years ago, and he’s now chair of Neighborhood Council for West Anaheim — a radically different place from the modern, affluent Ladera Ranch community where he spent most of his life. Traut is about public service and there’s nothing wrong with being motivated and ambitious — but these maneuverings illustrate the emptiness of Measure L campaign promises and the reality that the council districts campaign was about re-structuring city elections in order to tilt them toward Democratic candidates.traut hillary


  1. This is really cute. West Anaheim neighborhood council was originated as a place for neighbors to elect neighbors to represent us as a liaison between Anaheim city council and the community. Now that politics have squeezed in, allowing Jordan brandman to help Conner Traut into this position with absolutely no experience in our community (other than renting a room to be in the city to be able to run) has never, not once been to a meeting here and obviously Jordan and Connor have a clear path to the obvious west chair seat. I really do not like the idea of someone from ladera ranch representing us here in west Anaheim. We have fought really, really hard to get the focus on repairing the mistakes of the past officials. Now, we will be in the hands of someone with purely political motives. I am truthful because I really do care what happens to west Anahe, and could care less about a politician climbing the political candidacy ladder.

  2. Interesting that Traut posts to take back Anaheim from Republicans…. Because Republican CURT PRINGLE helped finance his school board campaign. And Lucille Kring and Kris Murray endorsed him for that board. Did he fail to mention while running his utter contempt for them? Funny he didn’t mind taking their money.

    • If you knew how much I would enjoy your comment, SoP, you probably wouldn’t have written it.

      Welcome to my world! This is Jordan Brandman’s protege we’re talking about here. What did you think was going to happen?

      [Personal attacks deleted]

      You should know, if you don’t — Matt certainly does — that there are various factions within the OC Democratic Party. The Young Dems are now securely in the hands of the “Business Democratic” faction — which in effect also includes a lot of Republicans — associated with the Chair, Henry Vandermier, and are run by his protege, Johnny Barba. Among their most prominent alumni are Jordan Brandman and his campaign strategist/manager Melahat Rafiei. They are tied to former Chair Frank Barbaro and the DFOC (among others I won’t mention.) They’re tired to the Building Trades, the Teamsters, and to some extent the Public Safety unions. And — I hope this doesn’t surprise you — to Matt and to Pringle as well, in a bipartisan way. (Daly, Pulido, Correa, and Solorio are also in this faction.) Their blog presence is in The Liberal OC and, I suspect, here.

      A separate faction (Democrats, Greens, and a lot of NPPs), of which I am now loosely aligned, tends to be aligned with the OC Labor Federation (before the Building Trades came to dominate it last year after Tefere Gebre left to become AFL-CIO VP), people associated with OCCORD and OCCCO (although of course not those groups themselves), public employees and service-oriented unions (like SEIU and UNITE-HERE), LGBT and minority cultural groups, etc. Their views tend to be reflected (although without exerting control) on blogs through Voice of OC and Vern and my portions of Orange Juice.

      The latter faction is the one that planned and drove through districting — because it will be useful in dealing with issues of poverty and equity (with which Tait and other Republicans are sympathetic.) The former faction is that one that seeks to ride in and take advantage of the victory, turning it to purely partisan ends. But never fear — if Connor is really like his mentor, he’ll cleave to the Pringle/Murray agenda just fine. No one truly knows where he’ll end up, though. (Probably not even Jordan.)

      I’m surprised — but also frankly pleased — that much of this is apparently new to you. Now you have a better sense of what has been taking place on this very blog — and why Matt is so complimentary of young Trout above. (Hey, I still have some hopes for Connor too — the same hopes that a few years ago I still had for Jordan. Now my main hope for Jordan is expressed in the second paragraph above.)

      • Matthew Cunningham

        “and why Matt is so complimentary of young Trout above.”

        This is a good example of how Greg operates. Although I disagree with Connor’s politics, he is a nice, bright, sincere guy. I’m very critical of Jose F. Moreno’s politics; I think he is a democratic socialist like Bernie Sanders. And I’ve also written that I think he is very smart, articulate, devoted to his family and that his successful rise from very difficult circumstances is inspiring. Does that mean I am somehow, some way, secretly, in league with him. After all, why else would I be so “complimentary”?

        For Mr. Diamond, recognizing a person’s positive qualities means you must be in league with that person somehow. He can’t imagine any explanation save a nefarious one. For him and his cohorts, political disagreement must be conjoined with personal opposition; you disagree with someone, then that person must be a bad person.

      • actually, you’re aligned with the Tait-Vanderbilt (I’m behind you James)-Pettibone-Ward-Chuchua Republican factions, but you must have left that out. And I believe Connor spells his name “Traut” — you must be thinking of Angels outfielder Mike Trout even though I believe you haven’t set foot in that stadium since he made it to the Bigs.

        I don’t think you’re loosely aligned with anyone; no one in the Party wants much to do with you. I’m sure if you ask nicely, Tom Tait will hire you for a corporate legal job.

        • Matthew Cunningham

          Now, Dan: if Greg says it is spelled “Trout,” then it is spelled “Trout”! Don’t inject any facts into the discussion. Clearly, your comment marks you as an acolyte of the Kleptocracy.

        • That’s just ignorant and foolish. Plenty of Democrats are also aligned with them on these issues, because we can see that committing Anaheim’s resources for decades on at best questionable gambles, and giving away Anaheim’s future income streams to cronies and contributors, is eventually going to destroy Anaheim’s poor, working class, and middle-class.

        • That’s just ignorant and foolish. Plenty of Democrats are also aligned with them on these issues, because we can see that committing Anaheim’s resources for decades on at best questionable gambles, and giving away Anaheim’s future income streams to cronies and contributors, is eventually going to destroy Anaheim’s poor, working class, and middle-class.

          You don’t CARE about those groups, except to give supporting them lip service in theory. So you’re on the side of the looters of the Treasury and those hired to suppress dissent.

          By the way, Tait and Vanderbilt are not the same. The Mayor is pretty consistent, but Vanderbilt does not march in lock step. He is by nature oriented towards thinking things through himself and seeking compromise. But he’s not “bought” at all.

      • Greg, you are such a presumptuous tool. The latter group you claim to align with all hated your guts throughout the hearings. I seriously thought they were going to bum rush you at that final meeting where you just had to have the last word. You have no clue how these factions work and you clearly have no clue the real inside baseball on the creation of the Community Map. No one, no faction wanted you involved, in fact one area where we are united, we all wish you would go away.

        • Oh, I think that I know a bit more of what went on behind the scenes than you do. But as I don’t know your own role in the process, it’s hard to judge. Mid-level somewhere, I suspect?

    • I suppose I should say more explicitly: Matt’s premise here is completely off. The faction that pushed for districts puts issues (and community benefit) far ahead of politics. The faction that organized this putsch — and I’m happy to see Edinger ousted, by the way — is one that puts party first, partly as a way to undercut ideology and issues. If they can have both Democrats and Republicans pursuing the same “profitable” agenda, it better serves their funders.

      As an advocate of districts, I recognize that among other things they lock in a Republican seat in Anaheim Hills, even after the rest of Anaheim turns highly Latino. And that’s fine with me. But if you’re wondering who’s been selling someone a bill of goods, it’s been largely this blog, with the buyers being Republicans like you.

      Feeling truly sick yet?

      • Matthew Cunningham

        “Feeling truly sick yet?”

        The only thing ill around here is your vivid imagination about me and others with whom you disagree.

        “As an advocate of districts, I recognize that among other things they lock in a Republican seat in Anaheim Hills”

        What an amazing insight, Greg – since it was obvious from the get-go that corralling as many GOP voters as possible into a single district, in order to reduce their city-wide impact, was a major goal of the council districts project.

        “The faction that pushed for districts puts issues (and community benefit) far ahead of politics.”

        Wrong. For the progressive coalition behind this project, issues and politics are the same. The extent to which they are explicit Democratic partisans is immaterial. Progressive had a very difficult time winning council races in Anaheim under the at-large system; so they worked to re-write the rules to make it easier to elect council candidates who will push progressive policies – and that means electing Democrats.

        • The mapping process didn’t lock them in, Matt; geography did.

          Anaheim Hills will continue to have a outsized effect on the Mayor’s race, even after all of the other districts are plurality Latino.

          Latinos were being blocked from the process with a lot of lawful trickery (such as Ms. Rivera’s runs.) Now that will be much more difficult. (Not impossible — just more difficult.) That — and the sucking of decades of future revenues by the City Council, which will devastate the City’s poor (if there are still places for the poor to live in Anaheim in the future) — was the motivation for this reform.

          Your conspiracy theory would be more compelling if even your believed it, but you’re not that stupid. Anaheim was a distinct outlier among other large cities in California in not having districts — and the reason for that it that it was easier to stack a (smaller) council with at-large elections. Now it will be more difficult — and in some or even many cases, it won’t work.

          The plan is obviously to elect ‘Business Democrats” who will, like Jordan, toe the line drawn by Disney and other corporations. That’s your (and your man Pringle’s) right to try; it’s the smart political move and it may well work. But don’t pretend that it’s some conspiracy involving the other wing of the party. These are YOUR GUYS who pulled this stunt. Own it. Or rather, as you already do seem to own it given your warm kiss to Connor — ADMIT to owning it. Your deflection of responsibility here is absurd.

          • Matthew Cunningham

            “The mapping process didn’t lock them in, Matt; geography did.”

            Um, yeah. The point that escapes you is that shifting to by-district elections allows for taking advantage of the geography to concentrate GOP voters in that district. Going forward, Anaheim will have a situation where each District 6 voter actually has less of a voice than a District 1 voter, for example. Under an at-large system, each voter has an equal voice.

            “Latinos were being blocked from the process with a lot of lawful trickery (such as Ms. Rivera’s runs.)”

            That’s just baloney. Leaving aside your fantasy that Jennifer Rivera was a decoy candidate (for which you offer no proof whatsoever), you also provide no proof of this “lawful trickery” you allege? Evidence, please? Lou Lopez was twice elected to the city council in 1990s, when Latinos were a smaller percentage of the city population. Lou wasn’t exactly a policy wonk, but he worked hard at running, put together a good campaign, was known to voters (Anaheim police officer, elected to both the ACSD and AUHSD Boards of Education), was a Republican but could attract non-Reep votes.

            Democrat Richard Chavez and Reep Bob Hernandez were both good candidates, and ran good campaigns, and they had the political good fortune of being firefighters in an election year (2002) when people loved firefighters even more than usual.

            John Leos had mountains of money spent of his behalf in 2010 and 2012. But he wasn’t a good candidate and the IE campaign on his behalf wasn’t very good either. Jose F. Moreno ran an amply-resourced campaign last year and lost, but a left-wing academic running city-wide in a more conservative off-year electorate that was being educated about his leftist politics.

            It’s not that Latinos couldn’t/can’t win city-wide elections. Good candidates who happen to be Latinos can. Bad, not-so-good and ill-timed Latino candidates lose.

            “The plan is obviously to elect ‘Business Democrats” who will, like Jordan, toe the line drawn by Disney and other corporations.”

            “THE PLAN”! OMG. The plan is entirely in your conspiratorial head, Greg. You NEED to believe in these conspiracies. I’m starting to think you can’t function otherwise. If there aren’t real windmills for you to tilt at, you make them up.

            • Uh, you laid out “the plan” in this very story, Matt. Have Connor move in on WAND for the ballot designation, then run in District 1 — unless Jordan moves to this white plurality district to do so. Were we not supposed to read that part? And of course Connor is portable and can move to District 2 when it’s up.

              So Latinos had 16% (4 of 25) of the City Council seats in the ’90s and 24% (6 of 25) in the ’00s.

              I made an offer to you earlier about jointly investigating Jenny Rivera’s candidacies; was this your taking the offer? I’d love to have “proof,” but I’m mostly struck about how far “you can’t prove it” is from being a denial. You’ve done this before, Matt. So let’s find out, shall we?

              When you advise people about politics, do you always tell them that “it’s all about the candidates and timing” rather than about, oh, I DON’T KNOW, ALSO THE INDEPENDENT EXPENDITURES? You carelessly left the Disney money (largely through SOAR) out of your analysis. I’m told that you’re not dumb, so I presume that that omission was intentional — right?

              • Matthew Cunningham

                “I made an offer to you earlier about jointly investigating Jenny Rivera’s candidacies; was this your taking the offer?”

                Uh, no.

                “I’d love to have “proof”…”

                You state as fact that Rivera’s candidacies were “lawful trickery” meant to dilute the Latino vote, but here you admit you have no proof to support your claim. That’s good. Admitting you have a problem is always the first step.

                “…but I’m mostly struck about how far “you can’t prove it” is from being a denial.”

                “Deny” what? I’ve never met Rivera. I don’t know anyone who has. Because you have no proof for your conspiracy, somehow I have to issue a denial of it? Again, delusional.

                “You’ve done this before, Matt.”

                Done what?

                • Why are you afraid to investigate who recruited Jenny Rivera to put her famous name on the ballot and then not bother to campaign? Is it because you know the culprit?

                  How do you know that you “don’t know anyone who has met Rivera” — which is almost surely false?

                  • Matthew Cunningham

                    Greg, I only approved this dishonest, childish comment to illustrate…well, how childish you can be. Honestly, you sound like a junior high bully: “Whatsamatter, huh? Ya scared? Scaredy cat! Scared cat!”

                    You twist my comments into me being “afraid to investigate who recruited Jenny Rivera.” Hello! What’s there to look into? You’ve already admitted you have no idea if she was recruited, but here you go again, stating it as if it was fact. Do you begin to get a glimmer of why you aren’t taken seriously? Because you say so many things that are unserious, unproven and untrue. And that’s being charitable.

              • Matthew Cunningham

                “Uh, you laid out “the plan” in this very story, Matt.”

                But you describe it as my plan, remember? And it’s not. I didn’t even find out about it until a couple of days ago. You really need to work on the fact-versus-fantasy thing, Greg.

                • I had written:

                  The plan is obviously to elect ‘Business Democrats” who will, like Jordan, toe the line drawn by Disney and other corporations. That’s your (and your man Pringle’s) right to try; it’s the smart political move and it may well work.

                  I didn’t say that you devised the plan; I said that you have the right to try “to elect ‘Business Democrats’ who will, like Jordan, toe the line drawn by Disney and other corporations.”

                  Now you may *prefer* that a Republican win, just as I may prefer that a Democrat win in Anaheim Hills, but in some places that’s just not likely to happen. When I can’t elect a smart and honest Democrat, I’m happy to have a smart and honest Republican in local politics.

                  • Since you don’t live in Anaheim, you can’t elect anyone, even your preferred Republicans (“I’m behind you James”).

                    You are you to decide on who is smart and honest? You’re not even honest with yourself.

      • Diamond's not a girl's best friend

        Democrats hate you Diamond.

  3. A Real West Anaheim Resident

    This Connor Traut is a disgrace to this community! He lied his way into a community group that is meant for actual community members, and the only reason he won by 1 vote was because all of a sudden his girlfriend decided to vote after a tie was announced!!! This was the shadiest this I have EVER witnessed in a community meeting!!! If Connor Traut is so concern about actually connecting to residents and getting involved, where has he been. Not once has he ever been to any community meetings, community events, or even more important the KaBOOM build at Twila Reid Park. If the expansion of parks is his platform then where was he when we redid the park. Connor was NO WHERE!!!! Paying for an address does not make you a resident of a community!!!!

    • Wow. But didn’t you see — Matt LIKES him!

      Looks like I’m going to have to save this WHOLE page just in case it somehow “disappears.”

      • Matthew Cunningham

        Oooh, you go right ahead and do that, you crafty political operative you!

        • No, just still stung by the fact that so much of your incriminating writing was “somehow lost,” conveniently for you, in the revision of your website.

          • Matthew Cunningham

            Wow. You really have gone round the bend.

          • Kind of like the Mysterious deletions at the Voice Of OC this week.

            Nice to see your buddy Beelzlebub (and crafty handles like Ben Dey Ho, Nick The Spick as well as others) back……..under a different FAKE name. Let’s hear it for integrity Adam!

            I guess they have a union to run and a washed up Lawyer to elect,

            • They sure are mysterious! In fact, this is the first that I’ve ever heard of them!

              My “buddy Beelzebub”? The nicest thing I recall saying about him is that he (or she) was right on certain issues. As with what I know of you, I have no idea who he or she really is.

    • Matt, you make it sound as though Connor and Jordan’s voracious appetites are ONLY fed in the atmosphere of Districts, but given how they corner the money game in Anaheim they could have taken At Large seats while shutting out any grass roots genuine neighborhood leaders lacking the money to cover a city-wide election. Quit blaming the system, which was passed by significant margins by EVERY precinct in Anaheim that I checked, even those swinging so hard to the right that Kashakari took the lead in their area. Put the blame where it belongs, on the shoulders of young punks without respect for the people who have lived in the neighborhoods they are using as stepping stones. This is not about L and M it is about Jordan and Connor being too big for their designer britches.

      I don’t think Jordan/Connor is an either/or proposition for West Anaheim.There are TWO seats representing residents west of Euclid. And you put those two in West Anaheim along with D.R. taking over Lucille’s seat, (they won’t respect Kring’s “right” to that seat any more than Connor respected Amanda’s “right” to the Chairmanship) and the Colony has traditionally veered to the left for years, you go a long way toward locking in the City. Watch which Districts the majority puts up for election in 2016, they will be the ones they need to swing toward the left for the Presidential year. That is not a partisan thing despite how it looks, it is simply their way of predicting how to maintain control of their crony capitalism base of operations, and folks better wake up to it QUICK!

      As far as PARKS, Connor did not promise park expansion in West Anaheim. No, read his position paper again, notice Connor only said he supports “park expansion,” he was not specific about WHERE. Presuming that he would wish to benefit his own constituents would be a mistake. Let us turn to the Book of First Assumptions Chapter 2 verse 43; “Thou shalt not be held to any promise, pledge, nor oath not stated in specific detail, and in writing, as thy spoken word is not thy bond.” Further in the Chapter we also read, “Thou shalt not be held responsible for words, nor deeds which are clearly wrong, evil, immoral, unethical, or untruthful, unless they shall first be proven illegal, and memorialized in case law (published appellate cases only) and/or by statute or legislative authority.” That UnScripture is very close to the Book of Proverbials, by the Apostle Kring, which says, “The Grand Jury did not tell us we COULDN’T do it, only that we SHOULDN’T.”

      Connor’s job is to support (or at least get West Anaheim out of the way) to enable Jordan Brandman’s bizarre push to expand LA PALMA PARK (not even in Connor’s area) but they will figure out some way to spin that as a benefit to West Anaheim, with sports fields for the whole community, yada, yada, you know the drill by now. According to Mr. Brandman, “everyone knows” that “the plan has always been” expanding La Palma Park from the 91 freeway to La Palma and Harbor Blvd to Anaheim Blvd. Yep, the whole block. And then “everyone knows” Glover Stadium was “always meant to be temporary” which is funny given its significance as a historic site. And despite having been told by the School District that they neither want, need, nor can afford dedicated, separate baseball and football stadiums, Brandman is pushing for that very thing, and continues to cite AUHSD as the park’s biggest tenant and most frequent user of the park/stadium. Does he really think with all of the school repair needed THIS is the highest priority for bond funds? Or is this simply the most expeditious manner in which to reward some supporter who happens to build stadiums? Who knows? Actually ONLY Jordan seems to know. The Parks Commission has NEVER voted to make La Palma Park expansion the highest priority in the parks chain of funding. In fact they have never approved the expansion at all, nor have they seen a plan for the expansion or improvements. At their last meeting, the Parks Chair was told by staff there IS NO PLAN. Yet this “non plan” is so high on the list now that the Anaheim Way property was sold with the specific intent of using the funds for La Palma Park. So much for using it for other parks in the Platinum Triangle as Council was led to believe by the usual staff report sleight of hand, enabled by the Council majority jumping in as the resident obstructionists when someone asked too many questions.

      Now consider the impacts to West Anaheim. The homeless “count in time” showed a population at Twila Reid ONLY AFTER La Palma Park put in the dog park. The dog park did not “solve” homelessness, it simply moved those without homes to another site. Twila Reid, apparently. So what happens when La Palma Park becomes one big, expensive, taxpayer funded set of stadiums?

      West Anaheim, please remember this behavior when those two come around looking for your votes, and I suggest you learn how to circle your wagons for future fights, this is not your last skirmish with the establishment upstarts. Good luck.

      • Watcher on the Wall

        Of course Cynthia tries to explain this away as a plot by the Disney/Pringle cabal. That’s her scapegoat for everything.

        For last few years, the role of Tom Tait and her and the rest of the Cult of Tait in the push for council districts was that of Col. Nicholson helping the Japanese build a bridge over the River Kwai. The only difference being the Nicholson character finally realized, too late, that he was collaborating with the enemy.

        Of course Cynthia insists this isn’t a partisan Democrat move. How would it look for the VP of the Anaheim Republican Assembly to be a collaborator in a Democratic plan to takeover the Anaheim City Council. But that’s precisely the role she has played, and continues to play. She and Tait and everyone else in the clown car are so blinded by personal animosities that they’ll try to stick it to Lucille Kring and hand District 4 over to the Dems. Nice going, Mr. OC GOP Local Elected Official of the Year.

        Measure L and M were about handing Anaheim City Hall over to the Democrats, so they can enact liberal Democratic policies. Cynthia Ward has been a willing participant in this Democratic project. She needs to own it instead of peddling ridiculous excuses.

        • Anaheim politics are very strange: there’s good and bad — meaning honest and corrupt — in both parties. That the corrupt factions in the parties had a battle here and the corrupt Republicans lost to sneakier corrupt Democrats doesn’t say anything about the bipartisan (actually multipartisan and nonpartisan) coalition of honest brokers who saw a problem that needed to be fixed. If I thought that you were an honest Republican, I’d feel back for you, given how much it must sting.

          The funny thing is that Matt cannot even blame the people who actually did it. (Neither can you, as you appear to be Matt’s echo.)

          P.S. Leave the good name of George R. R. Martin out of this!

          • West Anaheim residents fully blame Jordan and Connor in this mess. In fact, I blame Jordan more than Traut. Traut is young and looks to Jordan for advice. i won’t vote for Jordan for CD 46 nor would I extend a vote to Connor or Jordan for my district. And I will make sure that every single one of my neighbors knows exactly what they are about- their political careers NOT residents.

          • Diamond's not a girl's best friend

            Whatever you say Hodor

          • George R.R. Martin does have a good name until the next book comes out

        • Watcher on the Wall, I did not even MENTION Disney or Pringle. Why did YOU automatically read that into my comment?

          So you are saying that every precinct that voted in favor of switching to Districts was duped into it? Is the entirety of Anaheim too stupid to think for themselves? Or are they ALL in on the big insider deal that some claim puts me on the payroll and has Tait rolling in ill gotten gain using his political power to line his pockets? Please, enlighten us.

          What I heard from people during the campaign was support for Districts because they are sick to death of knowing big money buys Council seats and lack of money shuts out decent people who could be good leaders, but can’t overcome the need to communicate with a City of this size without selling their souls for mail money. It is widely understood that special interests can still buy their chosen leaders in the Districts, but at least by breaking the elephant into pieces that might be eaten one bite at a time the little guy without much money has a fighting chance where none exists in the At Large system. But NONE of that is linked in any way to what happened in West Anaheim last week. The Neighborhood Councils have gone through periodic takeovers long before the Electoral Districts were voted in. Ask the South District about that!

          OF COURSE this is a Democratic party deal, Liberals are injecting partisan politics into a system that had remained stubbornly non-partisan all these years, and frankly this would have happened with or without Electoral Districts. What we saw last week was not the result of Measure L and M, last week’s outrage was the result of a selfish punk wanting to leap frog up and over the customary steps of becoming involved in the community, building a support network, and making a difference WITHOUT a title, so that when it is time to select someone to lead WITH a title, it is a natural transition to offer the Chairmanship to someone already doing the bulk of the work. And in this I disagree with Mr. Diamond, whose dislike of someone I don’t think he has actually met seems to be based on some posts to the person’s facebook page. Now I have not met Ms (Mrs? I don’t know) Edinger, and honestly I have not seen the facebook pages that I know infuriated some folks. But I do know that Amanda has a reputation as a hard working volunteer who puts in the time and effort to make the community better, and Connor Traut does not appear to do this, or the meeting where he was elected to a seat he knows nothing about would not have been his first visit to a Neighborhood Council meeting! So Mr. Diamond may object to his perception of who the incumbent may or may not be, the fact remains that Newbie Traut showed extreme disrespect for the neighborhood of people who have shown up week after week, month after month, many of them year after year, only to see their choices taken away by people not previously involved, and to be frank I doubt many of them will return to live with the consequences of that action, while those who HAVE been involved are stuck watching the new kid screw up everything they have worked for. There are few things more infuriating to someone trying to make their home town better, and my heart goes out to those in West Anaheim who had to sit helplessly as this happened. I would be carrying pitchforks and torches in protest too!

          But again, NONE of this has anything to do with Electoral Districts. The Neighborhood Council system carved up the City a long time ago, and put the lie to the argument that offering government in bite sized pieces creates friction. We have seen the NC system work collaboratively between Districts as others will give way on their own priorities when they see a desperate need in another area, knowing if they have a need the others will look out for them in turn. This is how civilized people function together as a society. What causes friction is not the system, the friction is caused by electing self-serving jerks who are out for their own agendas. That is usually avoided in past Neighborhood Councils, because elections are usually decided by long term residents who understand the need to elect leaders who can play nicely with others. Of course those days are gone now, because a young kid who doesn’t want to put in the time to learn how things work and build his own coalition of support decided to bully his way into a seat by showing up with a dozen people who have not been active in the NC system before. Look RIGHT THERE for someone to blame. But Matt can’t do that because he is too closely tied to Connor and Jordan. So instead he makes the monumental stretch to blame Tait for the selfishness of Matt’s own friends!

          BTW-I don’t know what you think you are accomplishing by blaming Tait for something he didn’t do…do you think you are hurting his chances for re-election?

          • You are as delusional and verbose as Diamond.

          • To clarify (once Matt publishes this; I’m writing it at 4:40 p.m. on Saturday), when you say “this is a Democratic party deal” I presume that you’re referring only to this putsch at the Neighborhood Council, rather than to districting as a whole.

            And they are not “liberals.” They are opportunists.

      • Diamond's not a girl's best friend

        Cute is, how was the takeover of CRA to benefitTait?

  4. Every one of you are a big bunch of babies. Amanda went to great lengths, with me right next to her, to fight for what’s best for west Anaheim. I cannot believe you can support a politician rather than the community.. Greg, you live in Brea!!!! Shouldn’t you stick to YOUR issues in Brea. Traut stayed a whole 5 minutes at the committee meeting last night, and he’s calling people asking to mentor him, Jordan can NOT run the West end. He does not represent us. Those of you who do not live and breathe WEST Anaheim should not speak for us. And for the record, Amanda Edinger was not ousted. She was a respected resident andn he swooped in and wants to take all the credit for everything we have done. And that means everything. What exactly has Jordan or Traut done??? Lol.

    • J-
      all Jordan has to do is move, something he has repeatedly told others he will do (including me back in the day, it was no secret) and then yes, enough mail sent out to convince people of his commitment to West Anaheim and he will indeed represent you on Council, while he has not represented the best interests of Anaheim residents since he GOT to Council. The alternative it to run your own candidate, i suggest you get to work.

      J, you clearly have the advantage here in that you are a long time resident with roots in the area and boots on the ground. Go round up every warm body you can find, you have a war on your hands, and if a punk like Connor can come in with a dozen people and take over a seat you need more people. I know you didn’t expect it and were blind sided but now you know, and now you need to go outnumber them for the next battle, because it is coming. Remember, he still has to get his agenda APPROVED by a majority of residents. Go make sure the agenda that gets promoted at CDBG/CDAC is YOURS and not his.

      • Yes, I know all Jordan has to do is move, and we are all aware he will. I am just ashamed that our west Anaheim, which I love, has not enough outspoken people to say what are others like myself are thinking. There have been more lately, but not enough. Its incredulous, pompous, and arrogant of politicians to think they can serve our west end better. They do not have a CLUE whats going on. This whole thing is just pathetic. I hope no one supports Jordan/Traut, they haven’t done ONE THING for West Anaheim. NOT ONE THING.

        • J-
          West Anaheim is WAY beyond hoping nobody supports Connor or Jordan (although I share your hope.) You need to have a candidate lined up as an alternative or voters have no choice. I pray you have someone in mind, someone who knows and cares about West Anaheim, and that you are building a support network NOW for that candidate. Clearly you know how to get a hold of me, I have no idea who you even are. But if you want to contact me, I would love to connect you to others who would like to be helpful in supporting a solid conservative candidate against those two. Wishing them away is not going to happen. You are at war. Good luck.

          • Watcher on the Wall

            “…in supporting a solid conservative candidate against those two.”

            That’s rich. Cynthia Ward teams up with the unions and lefties on districts that carves Dem-leaning districts in West Anaheim, and now she wants to help them find a “solid conservative candidate.”

            A little late for that, Cynthia. If you’re so interested in electing solid conservatives to council, you shouldn’t have helped the libs move us to a system that tilts toward liberal candidates.

    • Most of my political and activist work these days — and even much of my professional work involves Anaheim. Open your mind and read what I’m saying and ask yourself why you emitted the “go back to Brea” reflex here. You got took — and not by anyone close to me.

      I know of one good honest potential Democratic candidate in and from West Anaheim. Even if you can’t find a Republican, there is still hope that West Anaheim will finally get ACTUAL representation on Council.

  5. Careful or you people are going to provoke Greg into opening up a can of 10,000-word-blog-post-that-no-one-can-read on all of us!

    • My readers have more endurance and interest in full stories than the likes of you. That’s why most of them aren’t afraid to identify themselves when they comment.

  6. Ya know, this is a stretch even for Matt. And NOBODY can stretch farther to blame unconnected events to others like Matt Cunningham can. But even this is too much for Matt. So what is going on behind the scenes that Matt doesn’t want Republicans offering support for Tait? Assembly Bill closing the Rider case loophole on bonds by JPAs? I’ll bet Moorlach would sponsor that…I haven’t been to GOP Central Cmte in a while. something going on there he needs backing for? Matt you know it is going to come out, and when it does you will look twice as creepy for setting up Tait.

    • Matthew Cunningham

      “Ya know, this is a stretch even for Matt. And NOBODY can stretch farther to blame unconnected events to others like Matt Cunningham can.”

      Cynthia, you really need to develop some self-awareness. You accuse me of stretching to connect unconnected events…and then immediately try to connect my writing this post to unconnected events. I have no idea what Assembly bill you are talking about and don’t know what’s happening at OC GOP Central Committee. In another comment here, you complain about someone accusing you of blaming Disney and Pringle when you made no mention of either one. Here, you accuse me of going after Tom Tait when I made no mention of him in my post. Saying you’re behavior is “the pot calling the kettle black” is an insult to pots and kettles. You don’t just stretch to connect the unconnected, Cynthia. You conjure connections out of thin air.

      The point of my post is that what happened at the West Anaheim Neighborhood Council last week is a natural outgrowth of the move to by-district elections, not the inevitable development you make it out to be. Other than what happened to the South District Neighborhood Council a few years ago, take-over drills like this have not been the norm. But they will be going forward because the positions, powerless as they are, make good campaign mail content: “As chair of the _____ Anaheim Neighborhood Council, Candidate So-and-So helped bring playgrounds to…”

      • Matt you are correct to call me on that, Watcher on the Wall made the connection and I mentally attributed it to you. You did not connect Tait or me to the lefty takeover of the West Anaheim neighborhood Council, so I do apologize.

        It is Watcher on the Wall leaping to those conclusions without merit, (and without prompting from Matt) and then bizarrely accusing me of being the conspiracy theorist. So why is someone lacking the conviction to put their names on a comment accusing me of seeing conspiracies? That is rich.

        I still stand by my statement that the takeover of the West Anaheim Neighborhood Council has nothing to do with By District elections, other than that Connor is looking for the quick inroad to becoming the instant insider so he can run for Council, and he would have done that anyway. South District was also the victim of a takeover a few years ago, and we were still under the At Large system at the time.

        Thankfully West Anaheim people have a good handle on who has their interests at heart, and i believe they will stand up and fight back. I also believe that bringing government down to a manageable level with Districts aids the candidate without much money, giving them at least some HOPE to cover a District with volunteers walking pieces door to door, and needing to cover a mailing bill for a much smaller section of the City instead of the whole entire voting population. So West Anaheim is better positioned to stand up to the outsiders who want to control Anaheim, and I wish them well. For a very long time now West Anaheim has not put forward a candidate, and the lack of representation has cost them dearly in lost infrastructure investment, lack of law enforcement, etc. In a perfect world resources would be allocated fairly across the City (despite what Murray claims, her numbers show the General Fund being evenly split but because much of eastern Anaheim is covered in HOAs that care for medians, parkways, etc the funding from the City stretches farther, and that is not factored into the arguments made by Council.) West Anaheim is due for a leader from their own hood, who understands the desperate needs that have been overlooked by leaders either unfamiliar with West Anaheim or who simply don’t care. If fighting off a bid by Connor forces that issue then it is on every long time resident to come to West Anaheim’s aid when and where we can. West Anaheim has been orphaned for too long, and being represented by outsiders who are interested only in their own crony capitalist projects and/or partisan feuding we don’t need isn’t going to clear hookers and sketchers from Beach Blvd. The whole City suffers when that is allowed to continue.

        Watcher, why do I think everything is a plot or sinister ulterior motives? You are kidding, right? have you seen the roughly ONE BILLION DOLLARS that has flown out the back door of City Hall in crony capitalist projects since this administration took over? And every penny of it has been supported by writers and commenters at this blog.

        So when the plan comes up showing Connor forfeiting parks money to put into the La Palma Park expansion “master plan,” (which exists only in the mind of Jordan Brandman) in an area where Connor is NOT a resident nor a “leader,” and where the school district has said clearly they don’t need new stadiums, cannot afford new stadiums, they are OK with Glover, and their only wish list is to get better access to Glover, will this blog and its support network advocate for a make-work project that is not remotely a priority in comparison to the other desperate needs in the community? Or will you find justification for supporting new stadiums nobody has asked for, because your lefty pal Jordan is behind the deal?

        THAT, my Watcher Friend, is why I think everything HERE is a plot…because that is Matt’s JOB, to run a PR play for whatever his benefactors are selling that week. But Matt is correct, in this case I blamed him for something said by Watcher on the Wall, and must admit to my goof. Matt merely leaped to the conclusion of Council Districts leading to Connor Traut’s self-interested behavior, Watcher blamed Tait and me for the actions of Traut which was the really BIG leap. Watcher instead of sitting up on the wall, how about coming down and getting your hands dirty making things BETTER around here instead of sniping at those trying to do the work?

        • Matthew Cunningham

          “THAT, my Watcher Friend, is why I think everything HERE is a plot…because that is Matt’s JOB, to run a PR play for whatever his benefactors are selling that week.”

          Is that right? And you know this because…you’re some kind of psychic? You’re going to believe whatever you want to believe, Cynthia; and what you believe doesn’t need to intersect with reality in order for you to publish it as if it were fact. You’re perfectly capable of making it up out of whole clothe, like you’re doing here.

          • Matt, no one from CATER knows the first thing about the public relations or public affairs business; Diamond actually asked me if Rep. Royce had sent me some business recently. Just make an accusation and fling it up on the wall….

        • Given the ugliness of Anaheim’s political climate, why would the average person want to run? I think there are many residents who would love to rise to the challenge but don’t want to see their good name defamed simply for having a different opinion than the VOC or OJ Blog etc. Folks are entitled to their opinions and disagreeing with a person does NOT equate to disliking them. It certainly doesn’t condone the name calling and hate filled speech we see at council meetings and on the local blogs. Maybe if residents saw more civil discourse, they would be willing to throw their name in the ring. Otherwise you will just get the career politicians…

        • Watcher on the Wall

          “So why is someone lacking the conviction to put their names on a comment accusing me of seeing conspiracies?”

          You mean, like CATER supporters and donor(s) who lack the conviction to disclose their names?

          Plus, I didn’t accuse you of being part of Connor’s coup. But you and Tait and your crew share responsibility for creating the conditions encouraging politicizing the neighborhood councils. Anyone with foresight could have seen that coming.

          • CATER supporters may face retribution from some with plenty of money behind them. Perhaps you’ve been in a blog where you’ve seen this happen.

            • So how does that differ from others that are afraid of YOU and Ms. Ward, given your irresponsible activity.

              You have threatened countless people, called them “Cowards”, “Losers”. “Ninja’s” (WTF), and a host of other derogatory names. Only to those whom you disagree.

              What bothers me is Cynthia’s claim that CATER contributors have a financial stake in the game, so they need to remain anonymous. So it’s OK for siilent ninja “vendors”, but not detractors.

              Hypocrisy??? Me Thinks So.

              • Speaking of derogatory names, let’s not forgot the “Alcohol Soaked Coven”. Apparently, those folks treated Jordan Brandman horribly when he came to town (an accusation which I have been told is NOT TRUE). Sadly, I see those same accusers saying some pretty horrible things about another young man trying to further his political career.

    • Watcher on the Wall

      Why do you think everything is a plot, Cynthia? Why do you believe there is always an sinister ulterior motive (at least when it comes to people on the opposite side of an issue)?

      You ask to be taken at your word that none of your actions are coordinated with Tait or his people. You should extend the same courtesy to others.

      • Maybe it’s because she knows how to do a public records request and read complex documents.

        By comparison: you know nothing, “Watcher on the Wall”!

        • Watcher on the Wall

          Cynthia is very good at mining those “complex documents” to connect dots that don’t connect. Both of you always go with the conspiracy when the face value explanation is the correct one.

  7. Connor, shame on you. I doubt you started out with good intentions, but you are certainly corrupt already. Allowing yourself to align next to Jordan speaks VOLUMES. Period.
    Good luck.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *