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Posts Tagged ‘Joe Mathews’

Columnist to Alec Baldwin: Silicon Valley Nerds ‘Would Adore You’

ShutterstockAlecHilariaBaldwinSince we recently highlighted Zócalo Public Square editor-columnist Joe Mathews‘ angry cross-country diatribe about Jimmy Fallon, it seems only natural to give equal time to an open letter tied to the opposite, east-to-west direction.

Responding to Alec Baldwin‘s New York magazine essay, Mathews runs down the reasons why Los Angeles might not be the right relocation answer. He notes that this is no longer the LA of Annie Hall and warns that a lot of the NYC scourges mentioned by Baldwin such as TMZ, Shia LaBeouf and thoughtless TV executives are all in Lalaland as well.

Mathews thinks he has a much better potential destination for Baldwin: Silicon Valley. A house in Marin County, he argues, could be the perfect, tranquil fit:

The nerds up north would adore you. Google and Facebook engineers routinely drool over visiting celebrities. Valley venture capitalists have thrown money at celebrity entrepreneurs MC Hammer and Jessica Alba. Silicon Valley folks have touted Ashton Kutcher as a tech guru; imagine how warmly they might welcome someone like you, who can actually act.

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Columnist: Californians Should ‘Declare War’ on Jimmy Fallon

JoeMathewsZocaloPublicSquarePicLook out. In his latest column, Zócalo Public Square editor Joe Mathews (pictured) fast-jams the Jimmy Fallon news. Contrary to Jay Leno‘s repeated good wishes for his successor, including a conversation between the two during The Tonight Show‘s final west coast week, Mathews thinks Fallon may well be the state’s Congenial Enemy Number One. Here’s the first two paragraphs:

It’s dangerous for a people to declare one man their enemy and hunt him down. It’s unwise for a state to scapegoat one man for its problems.

Nevertheless, I think California should make an exception and declare war on Jimmy Fallon.

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Former LA Times Staffer Would Welcome Koch Brothers Ownership

There’s the contrarian local view; and then, there’s the really contrarian local view. No other way really to frame former LA Times reporter Joe MathewsZócalo Public Square column arguing in favor of Koch brothers ownership. Mathews’ mother also worked for many years at the LA Times, at one point as an Asia correspondent.

The California editor’s jumping-off point is undeniable – his former employer has become “unthreatening and predictable.” And yes, the arrival of Charles and David Koch, for better or not-worse-than-closure, would change that:

If you doubt that that a polarizing owner can be good for California, let me urge you to visit a certain coastal castle in San Simeon. William Randolph Hearst, who I’m quite sure would endorse the idea of a Koch-owned LA Times, once wisely said, “Whatever begins to be tranquil is gobbled up by something not tranquil…”

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Zócalo Public Square Gives California Editor Joe Mathews a Weekly Column

While the future of KCETLink’s SoCal Connected is very much up in the air, another namesake is about to be launched. Beginning Thursday April 4, Zócalo Public Square California editor Joe Mathews (pictured) will be writing a weekly column titled “Connecting California.” It’s the site’s first such regular feature.

In a brief teaser, Zócalo promise that Mathews will avoid the habit of many other Golden State commentators by focusing on the future rather than the past:

Each week, Mathews will offer new narratives for California – stories that show readers how life is here today, who Californians are now and how 21st-century California communities work — and don’t work. He’ll challenge media assumptions — that California’s people are a collection of competing demographic groups, that the good old days are behind us and that our politicians are always to blame for all our problems—by offering stories from all over the state.

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Author Defends Notion of a USC Schwarzenegger Institute

In this day and age when everyone is a 140-character comedian, the announcement of a USC think tank endowed and led by Arnold Schwarzenegger is almost too obvious a target. Sure enough, the peanut gallery is cracking wise.

But Zócalo Square editor Joe Mathews begs to differ. He knows Schwarzenegger better than most and blogs at NBC Southern California that the news should not be cause for snickering:

As governor, he was terrific at doing what a think tank does – bringing together the best thinkers from across the spectrum together, and synthesizing new policy. His proposals in various policy areas were praised as bipartisan and thoughtful.

What the governor wasn’t as good at was turning those proposals into action, particularly on fiscal matters, sometimes because of his own political weaknesses, sometimes because the state’s broken governing system got in the way. But those failures will be useful to this new enterprise, as Schwarzenegger can apply what he learned from defeats (and maybe teach people how not to repeat them).

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Zócalo Public Square Editor Grumbles About Clooney-Obama ‘Starmageddon’

Joe Mathews is certainly not alone in expressing the sentiment that tonight’s big fundraiser in Studio City for President Obama will cause another needless LA traffic nightmare. But the NBC Southern California blogger and Zócalo Public Square associate editor takes it a step further with this headline taunt – “Starmageddon: Obama Could Make Us Hate Clooney

FishbowlLA thinks it will take something much more cataclysmic for Angelenos to start hating on the Charming-est Man Alive (e.g. like stealing Angelina Jolie away from Brad Pitt). Then again, we’re not planning on being anywhere near the 91604 zip code at rush hour tonight. From Mathews’ Prop Zero post:

It would be one thing if the presidential stop at Clooney’s pad was for a public, governmental purpose. But it’s not. It’s for a fundraiser. When the president and a movie star schedule something like this, they’re demonstrating arrogance: our party and our politics are more important than your life.

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Sacramento Bee and LA Times File Joint Public Records Lawsuit

Publishers of The Sacramento Bee and the LA Times are joining forces to sue the California State Assembly to release detailed records of how it spends its money.

Here’s the backstory from The Bee:

The legal fight stems from allegations by Democratic Assemblyman Anthony Portantino that his budget was slashed by Assembly Speaker John A. Perez as punishment for casting the lone Democratic vote against this year’s budget.

Portantino, The Bee and The Times, among others, submitted requests recently to the Assembly under the Legislative Open Records Act seeking records that could shed light on his allegations of punishment.

The Assembly Rules Committee released information about expenditures from years past, but it balked at producing documents related to this year’s office budgets.

The Assembly justified the initial rejection of the papers’ request by citing the California Public Records Act’s stipulation that “preliminary drafts, notes or legislative memoranda” are not open for public perusal. We’ll see what the courts say. As NBCLA’s Joe Mathews cautions, the last major state suit of this kind–when the Times sued then-Gov. George Deukmejiandidn’t go very well.

Zócalo Public Square Ramps Up Editorial Operations

There’s a lot going on these days with Zócalo Public Square’s web presence. In the past few months, a trio of very impressive journalists has come on board full-time and next week, the eight-year-old company will move to larger office space within its current Koreatown headquarters.

Joe Mathews, formerly a political reporter with the LA Times, came over to Zócalo in January to head up California coverage, while T.A. Frank segued from Washington Monthly to become ideas editor. A month ago, they were joined by managing editor Megan Greenwell, from the Washington Post. As if that weren’t enough, the group’s off-site editorial director since fall is Andrés Martinez, previously editorial page editor at the LA Times.

“We started on the ground,” executive director Gregory Rodriguez explains to FishbowlLA via telephone. “Most of our revenue is based on events. We began by partnering with foundations and other cultural institutions, who wanted us to convene events and create ancilliary materials.”

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Hairy Headlines Abound in Wake of Boxer Fiorina Debate

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That hair maybe so yesterday. But the headlines are so now.

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LAT Staffers Respond to Palin’s Jab

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In case you missed it – Sarah Palin reads all newspapers and has gone after the LA Times by name today on the stump:

If there’s a Pulitzer prize category, for excellence in kowtowing, the L.A. Times wins.

Former LAT staffer had on his facebook update, “Joe Mathews might take seriously McCain’s demand that the LAT release its tape if he would release his medical records.”

Good one, Mathews.

Anonymous current staffer told FBLA, “By going after the LA Times it’s one last attempt to scare hell out of the Bubbes and the Bubbas.”

You got one? Send it on over to us.