While the nation frets over Trump’s Russian connection, Los Angeles has to worry about the Chinese government’s taking control of the Los Angeles City Hall with the blessings of Los Angeles Superior Court Judge, Richard Fruin.
How the City Made Itself Ripe for a Take-over
Some institutions are more prone to a take-over than others. Democratic institutions like a city council usually require the outside entity to have a majority of the voting members to be its men (women). The Los Angeles City Council has ceased to operate as a democratic body. Starting in 2006 it transformed itself under the leadership of council president Eric Garcetti into an authoritarian feudal society with a Prince (mayor) at the top and with fifteen (15) Lords and Ladies as absolute rulers in their fiefdoms (districts). Everyone else was relegated to serf status. As Los Angeles Superior Court judge, Richard Fruin, twice ruled. The serfs of Los Angeles have no legal rights.
The serfs had filed a Citizens Lawsuit to the effect that the Los Angeles City Council members operate according to an vote trading pact where they UNANIMOUSLY approve all projects. In order for any building project to receive unanimous approval, all a Lord or Lady has to do is place the project on the City Council agenda and it is automatically approved by the City Council’s vote tabulating machine. There is no need for any human being to cast a single yes vote. The Vote Trading Pact has already determined that all votes will be Yes which is why the machine votes for the councilmembers.
Thus, it was very easy for the Chinese government to take over the LA City Council. All it has to do is make a deal with the mayor, and whatever deal the Chinese government wants is automatically and unanimously approved.
Let’s look at how the Chinese ownership of the LA City Council plays out in DTLA. There is the Grand Avenue Project.
CORE, which is owned by the Chinese government has become partners with the City of Los Angeles in this project. CORE asserts that it is putting up $290 Million
However, CORE — which operates out of Singapore and Beijing — may not remain unknown for long. Indeed, CORE’s parent companies, the state-owned construction giant China Communi-cations Construction Group (CCCG) and the affiliated China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), created CORE just over a year ago with the aspiration to make it China’s largest overseas real estate developer, according to the CCCG’s mission statement on its website. CORE’s CEO, Liu Qitao, is also the chairman of CCCG. The Real Deal, Los Angeles Real Estate News, Meet the Chinese Investor in Related’s Grand Avenue Megaproject The Nearly $300M [290M] Investment Is Core Fund’s First Us Deal December 15, 2016 06:30PM, By Gabrielle Paluch
The Garcetti Administration Weclomes Corruption and Fraud to Los Angeles
There is a very serious question whether the City of Los Angeles should be a partner with Core.
But CORE inherits a spotty legacy from its parent, CCCC. In 2011, CCCC and all of its subsidiaries were debarred from bidding on projects by the World Bank, because one of its predecessors, China Road and Bridge Group, was debarred for fraudulent practices discovered by auditors on a Philippines road project in 2009. The debarment is subject to review in 2017. CORE, as a subsidiary of CCCC, is also subject to sanctions, World Bank spokesperson Dina Elnaggar confirmed to TRD by email. Ibid
The City of Los Angeles has gone into partnership with a company which the World Bank barred due to fraud! Did Mayor Garcetti or Councilmember Huizar inform anyone that CORE had been barred from bidding on projects due to fraud? Of course not. When Gardcetti got the City Council to approvc Juri Ripinsky for the Paseo Project at the site of the old Sears store in Hollywood, did Garcetti inform the City Council that that Juri Ripinsky had served two years at Leavenworth for real estate fraud? No. That’s OK with Judge Fruin — whether it is a local crook or an international fraudster who has run afoul of the World Bank, the serfs have no right to know or object.
With the help of Judge (agent?) Richard Fruin, no such disclosures about the machination of the Chinese government are required. According to Richard Fruin, the serfs have no legal right to complain so why tell them anything? Because the City Council may do whatever it wishes, the lawsuits brought by the serfs present “no justiciable controversy.” That is the American counterpart to the Divine Right of Kings, where the King’s edicts may not be questioned.
CORE is not the Christoper Columbus of Chinese Developers
CORE is not China’s first foray into Los Angeles. By the end of the year 2016, there are China Life Insurance, the Gemdale Corporation, Wanda, JE Group and Singpoli. Anything which they want, the LA City Council unanimously approves. That makes China the de facto owner of Los Angeles City Hall.
China Lie Insurance has a stake in Los Angeles, “With China Life’s help, GLP is now the second-largest warehouse landlord in the US. The new portfolio totals 58 million square feet, (5.4 million square meters) of logistics assets spread across 20 major markets, including Los Angeles, the Washington, DC-area and Pennsylvania.” November 5, 1015, Asia Real Estate Intelligence, China Life to Invest $1 Bil in GLP’s US Warehouse Portfolio, by Michael Cole
In August 2014, Shenzhen Hazens Real Estate Group, one of the largest development companies in China, purchased the Luxe City Center Hotel and two adjacent parcels in Los Angeles for $105 million from Beverly Hills developer Emerik Properties Corp.
The unique aspect of China investing in Los Angeles in contrast to making investments in other cities is that in L.A., China becomes one of the de facto owners of the City Council. Whatever Shenzhen Hazens or any other agenccy of the Chinese government wants, it will get with unanimous approval. If China wants to buy all its steel from mainland China itself and close out all US steel makers, China may do so.
One needs to distinguish between investments in a city and ownership of a city. With Los Angeles, the China’s investment in Los Angeles brings it an ownership share in the City government. While the projects will no doubt involve extortion-bribes as we saw with Leung, a Chinese immigrant and developer of the Sea Breeze Project in Los Angeles, the ownership requires the periodic tribute to the Prince and the Lords and Ladies. Does anyone doubt the ability of the Chinese government to pay the going rate to maintain its ownership stake in Los Angeles City Hall? Apparently, Judge Fruin thinks China can afford it maintain its ownership position in LA City Hall, but if anyone should object to China’s ownership, Judge Fruin stands ready to throw the uppity serfs out of court.
And what is the attitude of the new Chinese owners to citizen, er excuse me Judge Fruin, what is China’s attitude to serfs’ having input into construction in their city? The Los Angeles Times shared with us our new owner’s position.
“The speed is so dramatically different in China,” said Sonnet Hui, executive project director for Shenzhen Hazens, which is building a $700-million mixed-use project across from Staples Center. “There’s a lot of planning and study here, whereas in China it’s just ‘Let’s go, let’s go.’ ” http://lat.ms/2ceEzLv August 26, 2016, LA Times, They Built Towering New Cities in China. Now They’re Trying it in Downtown L.A., by David Pierson
Yep, that’s Judge Fruin’s way, “let’s go, let’s go” as he shoves us peons aside.
Thanks to Judge Fruin, China Owns the LA City Council
Thanks to Judge Fruin, China is now an owner of the Los Angeles City Hall. It seems that the only limitations on its ambitions are the amount of extortion which Garcetti will demand and whether it have conflicts with its co-owners of Los Angeles City Hall such as CIM Group.
Welcome to the new Los Angeles. With China and Chinese steel all things are possible.