Back issues in my
MORE BeachHead Archives
Free Venice Beachhead
archives selected articles 1980-81
Beachhead Archives 1983
30 Years Ago in Call
Someplace Paradise and/or Ghost Town
Venice in Books A-C
Venice in Books D-K
Venice in Books L-P
Venice in Books Q-Z
Quotations about Venice
Venice in Magazines and other ephemeral
1981 Resistance Celebration
1981 Resistance Celebration
Birth of Venice:
1914-1916 Part 1
1914-1916 Part 4
1914-1916 Part 5
Destiny's Consent by
Lions and Gondolas
Poem about Venice
Tales of the Blue Meanie
by Allan Cole
Another Chapter from
Tales of the Blue Meanie by Allan Cole
Venice Historical Society
1969 Police Riots
Jack the Liar
Free Venice Beachhead
Webslave's note: Each month, back
when I lived in Venice, someone from the Beachhead Collective would
drop off a bundle of a hundred copies at my door, and I would distribute
them house-to-house around Oakwood. My way of continuing to be a Beachhead
volunteer is to resurrect and re-type selected articles from its past
(pre-computer) issues, for which the Beachhead has graciously granted
Washington Squares: "Radford's
by Carol Fondiller
October 1982 #154
How many of you remember
the first largest erection on Washington Street? Raise your hands. How
many of you even know what I'm talking about? Hmm. Well I guess not many
of you know about the trailer park then, either. I wonder how many people
were displaced for your carport or cathedral ceiling. Hey, no sweat -
you didn't know, Just get your white wine spritzer and get comfy.
You know Washington Square,
don't you? That big block building on Washington Street by Grand Canal?
The one that blocks out those cute little multi-leveled jailhouse-type
buildings that are High Rent apartment houses? Maybe they've turned them
into condos. Anyway, there's this blocky big mass of a building that has
onramps, and it says Washington Square in big red letters. It advertises
restaurants and shops, parking etc. And there seems to be no way for you
to get into the place from Washington St. Right. That one. And there
is no way for you to get in from Washington St. you have to drive
your car around and down into a subterranean parking lot, and then walk
up to the first level.
About ten years ago, that used to be
a community. It was a trailer park I don't mean the Super Duper tract
home trailers of today. I mean those little teardrop jobs that were made
for hard traveling and traveling light. Little trailers that would fit
into one of today's RVs. Retired military personnel lived there. I don't
mean officers and gentlemen, I mean 20-year men - sergeants, mess officers
and their families. Old people living on Social Security lived there.
Hard drinking mechanics, waiters, waitresses. Divorcees with their kids
used to live there. You didn't need a car to get to work, and the kids
played on Grand Canal and went to school at Nightingale Elementary, which
was subsequently known as Anchorage, which closed down because the Marina
and the Peninsula were sterile. The school has recently become the new
home of the hitherto homeless Alternative school Area "D".
The trailer park was where one could
stay until they got their bearings, or stay because there was a community
life. If the parents were sick or busy or working or indulging in various
habits, there were always other folks around to watch out for the kids,
and they could always get hamburger at Hinanos. The rents were cheap at
the trailer park, and the plumbing worked enough so that you could to
to the bathroom any time, and even get a shower a couple of times a week.
Trousdale Estates it wasn't, but it was a long way away from a farm workers'
A sensitive young speculator and EST
member J. Alan Radford bought the property.
He had a dream. After a bitter fight
where a bulldozer was trashed, J. Alan succeeded in destroying a healthy,
thriving Venice sun-community. He built his big shiny dream that extruded
cement barriers on Washington St. He put a park for children right by
the canal nest to a soon-to-be-opened supermarket. The children's park
was, I think the only concession that was gotten by the community from
the sensitive speculator. At one of the meetings with the community J.
Allan Radford said as he looked towards the ocean his eyes filled with
Ayn Rand dreams, "I get what you're saying, but water and poor people
don't mix." J. Allan's dream building had levels lit by lamps that
simulated flickering candles. Cement was mixed with pebbles here and there
to create the illusion of "natural" unevenness. Elevators were
installed that had huge blow-ups of Venice's old day. Oh No, No, No! Not
pictures of the trailer park, but QUAINT Venice - ladies with parasols,
men with high collars and boater hats, horseless carriages. The sort of
pictures one sees in mass-produced ferny ambiance of some of the Main
St. Quiche and Omelet restaurants.
You can see what I mean if you stop in
First Federal Loans on Windward Avenue.
One of their big pictures is phony, however.
It shows a present-day entrepreneur trying to look like Warren Beatty.
L. Allan Radford planned for scads of
charming little shops that sold "gourmet" cheeses, "Gourmet"
candies, imported dresses, designer optometrists, a J. Magnin's. The Safeway
Market that used to be on the traffic circle in back of the Post Office
closed down and moved to Washington Square, Not a great loss, said some
of the residents, it was the only place in town where the meat was green
and the veggies were brown! A Safeway employee told me that they moved
from Venice to the Peninsula because of theft. After nearly a year of
operation in its new Marina-oriented location it closed, one of the cashiers
told me, because of theft and bad checks. The old new quaint one-of-a-kind
specialty shops and fancy fast food takeout places opened. No matter that
the Marina already had two shopping centers, one at Maxella and one on
Bali Way, this was going to be fro the single swingers who were moving
into the no-children-allowed jacuzzi apartment complexes. Washington Square
was going to be a vertical Rodeo Drive where the anticipated influx of
young upwardly mobile inwardly insecure chic seekers needed to have the
good life defined for them in terms of mirrored glasses, espadrilles,
fraudulent Bordeaux from France. They would have money to burn on anything
Home Magazine or Cosmo defined as "in." The new
inhabitants were all going to like those architects' renderings of people
8 heads long, open collars creased casual trousers deck shoes. And one
could keep one's smooth bland figure by jogging even if one did it a bit
too much with Wisconsin Brie.
The shops closed one by one, replaces
by others, then none at all. J. Allan Radford, and the Marina weekly newspaper
the Argonaut tried to erase the raffish Hamburger Square image.
Old residents called Washington St. from Pacific to Speedway "Hamburger
Square" because of the many hamburger places. They had to clean up
the Square, clean out the bums campaign. One of the restaurants whose
clientele consisted of motorcyclists and their girlfriends closed down
and re-opened as a place that served escargots - it lasted 3 months and
it closed again and it welcomed back its old and steady clientele.
J. Allan tried publicity stunts like
a 500-pound cherry pie served on Washington's birthday. Washington Square,
Washington's birthday - get it? The Jockey Club, a private disco-oriented
club, no casual attire, tank tops or tee shirts allowed, opened.
J. Allan declared bankruptcy. Now I don't
know about you, but when I say I'm broke, that means I can't find two
pennies at the bottom of my purse, and I've already turned in all the
coke bottles I can find. When people like J. Allan say they're broke,
they mean that they're down to their last 75 thou. So, taking responsibility
for his own actions in true EST touchy feely fashion, he packed up his
few meager belongings in his bandanna, and trudged up the coast in search
of other communities to exploit.
Have you been to Washington Square lately?
Several companies have bought and sold Washington Square since J. Allan
took off with his assets and left us with his cement excreta on Washington
I hadn't been in the place for several
years. It's a very easy place not to go into if you're walking, and Washington
St. is still a place for walking.
"I'll take you there," said
Mary Lou. "It's quite an experience."
At late afternoon, the sun was still
After parking the car in the subterranean
garage, we wended the convoluted way up several flights of stairs to one
of the levels. The shops were empty. Vacant. For rent/lease signs sprouted
whitely at window after window of vacant storefronts. J. Magnin's was
gone. Vanished was Wild Women, a dress shop where the cheapest dress was
We saw a figure in one storefront that
was turned into an office. On closer inspection it turned out to be a
stuffed figure of a cleaning woman. Cute. The houseplant boutique where
the owner didn't know an African Violet from a diffenbachia was gone.
The Puffy Pillow furniture shop was gone. The Hungry Tiger was still open.
We stopped in Genji for some sushi. After we finished it was dark.
The little phony candle light lamps still
flickered on automatically. The shrubbery was well tended. What was the
children's park was fenced in and made into a private garden for the vacant
looking office cubicles that were carved out of the failed Safeway.
The elevator still went up and down,
its walls still covered with poster sized prints of the "quaint"
era of Venice. How long will it be before my time becomes quaint to someone?
It was still. It was as if Washington Square had been hit by a microbe
that Reagan has given permission to start manufacturing again - no people.
In a way maybe the Reagan bug did at least give the coup de grace. A piece
of disco music whimpered thinly above us. I looked up. From the looks
of the drunks holding onto the railings above me, the Jockey Club has
relaxed its dress code somewhat. Tank tops, bare chests, halters and sandals
"Thank you Mary Lou, that was a
very edifying experience."
"I'm so glad you liked it,"
she said. "I guess karma will get you if you don't watch out."
"It would make a terrific mixed
use low income family housing center," I said, "or an underground
We spoke in low tones, so as not to alarm
the ghosts, but to let them know we were still there.
January 1982 #145
North Beach Plan Revised: Is That All There Is?
by Arnold Springer
Several significant changes in the North
Venice Specific Plan may be in the works. Reliable sources informed the
Beachhead that these changes will be revealed at a public hearing in February,
before the L. A. City Planning Commission. A promised community meeting
in Venice could be held as early as late January.
The anticipated changes result from input
received by "Murph" Miller who is the city planner heading the
project, at both public meetings and more intimate encounters.
Ocean Front Walk
While the detailed revisions have yet
to be finalized it is believed that a 35 foot height limit and a maximum
lot consolidation of 5 or 150 feet will be proposed for land fronting
Ocean Front Walk. Within this height the following uses will be mandated:
1) a minimum of 50% replacement parking on all vacant lots regardless
of whether they had been used for parking in the past or not; 2) mandatory
ground floor commercial uses and parking to sq. ft. ratios which closely
approach current Coastal Commission guidelines. Depending on the amount
and intensity of the commercial uses all parking will be either subterranean
or semi-subterranean. The 35 foot height limit is computed on the following
ratio: One floor semi-subterranean parking begins 5 feet below grade and
extends 3 feet above. First floor commercial @ 12 feet, 2nd and 3rd floors,
mixed residential and commercial @ 10 ft each, equals 35 feet.
An additional height bonus of 10 ft.
will be awarded projects which allocate 60% of their total residential
sq. footage to on site affordable housing. Such buildings could thus be
45 ft. high and they would not be required to provide replacement parking.
Developers could choose to provide the affordable housing off site, within
3 miles of Venice. Under this option however, replacement parking again
becomes mandatory on site but the developer would be permitted to build
to 39 feet instead of 35 feet. If a developer decided to provide both
affordable housing and replacement parking on site the maximum height
of this building would be 49 feet.
The 25 ft. height limit remains unchanged
for the walk streets in the city plan but a 10 ft. height bonus is given
in exchange for a voluntary single unit of affordable housing. No lot
consolidations are permitted in an attempt to preserve the character and
scale of the walk streets.
However on the two widest developed streets
in the area, Navy and Rose (but no other developed streets in the area)
lot consolidations of up to 100 feet will be permitted but only when mandatory
affordable housing units (25% of units in the building) & mandatory
replacement parking as per Ocean Front Walk regs, are provided on site.
No commercial uses will be permitted. A ten foot height bonus or a project
of 35 feet will be allowed for such projects.
The city continues to oppose mandatory
replacement parking in the rest of the walk street area east of Speedway
and west of Main St. Instead it proposes to increase the number of cars
required per residential unit from 2 to 3. Thus in a typical duplex 6
rather then 4 parking spaces would be required, but sideyards could be
used to provide these. The spaces not required by the owner of the property
could be rented or leased to residents of the area. The thinking here
is that the increased parking will in part mitigate the loss of presently
existing residential parking on vacant lots in the area
The historical preservation zone of Windward
Ave. originally was planned to extend to Cabrillo Ave. This has now been
amended and the zone will extend only to the traffic circle. In addition
to the restoration of the arches along Windward and perhaps the creation
of some sort of architectural ambiance mechanism, the plan calls for greater
heights than in the rest of Venice. Criticism from within the Planning
Dept. may result in the restoration of the mall concept.
Parking and Tram Service
The Coastal Commission rejected the city's
specific plan for Playa del Rey at its December meeting. In so doing it
served notice that it wanted to see the city propose creative alternatives
to the auto in beach areas adjacent to the Santa Monica Bay. Specifically
the Commission told city planning director Calvin Hamilton and his assistant
Peter Broy that L.A.'s plan had not anticipated the impact of the proposed
30,000 person community planned by the Summa Corp. for the area south
and east of Marina del Rey. Specifically the Commission appeared interested
in the creation of a local tram system operating only within the Coastal
zone from Santa Monica to Play del Rey. The trams would serve both residents
and beach goers living outside of the area Visitors would park outside
the area and be brought in by trams thus maximizing public access and
minimizing the need for additional parking lots in the area. Creative
financing could include a system of in lieu of fees on all new construction,
something which so far Los Angeles has strongly rejected.
The Commission instructed its staff to
meet with their city counterparts and together produce a proposal. The
parking and beach access questions appear to be the final obstacle to
plan approval by the Commission. It is believed that a basic understanding
between the City and the Commission will be reached by summer and with
that the approval of specific plans for Canals/Peninsula, North Venice,
and Oakwood will be a matter dotting the i's and crossing the t's.
Dividing Venice: Crime & Racism
by Jim Smith
The recent series of rape and robbery attacks have
brought the realities of "life in the big city" home to many
Venice residents. The fear of being the victim of a crime, of being raped
or murdered has created much paranoia on my block.
The media has been quick to point out that this
particular gang is Black, no doubt residents of Oakwood. A recent newspaper
article said the police describe Oakwood as "the turf of a pack of
violent young men who prey on the surrounding neighborhood."
This view of the Venice Black community should come
as no surprise since the attitudes of the LAPD and their leader, Daryl
Gates, concerning Black people have been well publicized lately.
The question is, how will tie "decent Joes"
of Venice respond to the problem of rising crime in the community?
Well, one "decent Joe," a longtime Venice
resident who should know better, is quoted in the L. A. Times as
saying "I'm buying a gun, I don't think the bad guys should win."
If there is any question about who Joe thinks the
bad guys are, it is resolved in this next quote: "When people get
out of jail, they move to Oakwood. The worst people in the world live
Joe's view of the world, as described in the Times,
is, I believe, not only out of touch with reality but is extremely dangerous
to all of us.
Joe's statements create more division between Black
and white in Venice, as if the railroad tracks that slice our community
into Black and white sections weren't division enough.
Joe has a right to be angry. The crimes committed
by this gang are horrid and cruel. But, before rushing out to follow Joe's
example by buying a gun to defend ourselves against Black Venice residents,
maybe we white Venice residents should stop to consider a few facts.
First of all, Joe's view of Oakwood as the place
where the worst people in the world live is completely opposite to my
experience and I'm also a longtime Venice resident.
Oakwood has been the most stable area of Venice
for years. It is a place where families have lived for generations. It
is to my knowledge unique, the only seaside Black community in Southern
Like Black people all over the country, Oakwood
residents, because of institutionalized racism, live in permanent economic
depression with extremely high unemployment rates and very limited promotional
opportunities for those fortunate enough to be working.
Now, with the rest of the country sinking into a
depression, the worst since the "great" depression of the 1930s,
the situation is becoming desperate in minority communities like Oakwood.
Add to these economic difficulties, Reagan's disdain
for welfare, poverty programs and federally funded jobs programs and you
have a prescription for hopelessness, violence and drastic increase in
Not long ago the LAPD organized a neighborhood meeting
on my street to discuss the crime spree. The meeting happened, possibly
coincidentally, the same day that 10,000 of us turned out to show the
President what we thought of his policies.
The block meeting occurred on the only street in
Venice that was the scene of an attack by this gang outside the Oakwood
area. Why wasn't the meeting held in Oakwood which has been hard hit by
this gang? Why did the police choose a white area where statements like
Joe's would be aired?
Could it be that the police who have never been
popular in the community are attempting to generate racism in order to
build a base among white Venetians?
Local tactics like these also aid Reagan and his
fat cat backers. If Black and white victims of Reaganomics can be made
to fight each other, it is not likely they will join together in unemployed
committees or anti-nuclear coalitions to turn this country around. Sentiments
like those expressed by Joe play right into this divide and conquer strategy.
Joe's statements not only help fuel racism but they
lay the basis for fascism in this country. Joe goes on to say, "there
aren't enough police around here."
Is it possible, Joe, that there can never be enough
police to prevent crime if there is no other way to make a living? Is
it really possible, Joe, to control the police so that they only protect
us from those people in Oakwood and don't start investigating our personal
habits and political beliefs? Can we have more and more police without
having a police state?
Yes, something has to be done about crime in Venice
and America. But first we have to identify the criminals.
Who are the criminals that are throwing people out
of work and denying welfare to the needy?
Who are the criminals that are supplying weapons
and encouragement to dictators and right wing death squads around the
Who are the criminals that may destroy all our property
and our lives by setting off a nuclear war?
Joe said a lot to the Times reporter. He said, "The
working class people are easy prey." I agree with you on this, Joe.
We working class people, particularly us white working class types are
easy prey to our prejudices and to the constant media barrage trying to
turn us against Black working class types or undocumented working class
The real criminals, the Reagans, the military, the
multinational corporations, including the TV networks, L.A. Times, etc.
are very devious and we are an easy prey. But we are not hopeless or helpless.
It is important for all of us to oppose these criminals
like we did that night at Century City. It's just as important to do something
positive about conditions right here in Venice.
Instead of getting guns to protect ourselves against
each other, how about starting some dialog between Black, Latino and white
residents in our community?
Maybe we can talk things over and find some solutions
to our mutual problems. Maybe we can get a lot of our neighbors to demand
that Venice are industry be good neighbors by hiring more of us in proportion
to our unemployment rates by race.
Maybe we can figure out how to get rid of some of
the extreme reactionaries who claim to represent us at the local, state
and federal levels but who are contributing to our misery. Who knows,
maybe some of us, even you, Joe, can get elected and begin doing something
about our common problems.
If we in Venice, with our long and honored tradition
and belief in freedom and human dignity can't get it together, who can?
L.A. Game Plans
by Arnold Springer
Strapped by declining revenues, the Recreation and
Parks Department of Los Angeles is on the prowl for additional sources
of moola. And like the opportunistic coyote, it is finding new money in
the pockets of citizens who have already paid to use the public parks
through their taxes. Coincidentaly the people who tend to use parks the
most are those who can least afford to pay twice. Special user taxes like
those pioneered by Recreation and Parks in L.A. fall heaviest on the poorer
classes of the city.
Testing the Waters in Venice
Hard upon the successful imposition of a use tax
on Griffith Park visitors, the Dept. has decided to test the waters in
Venice. It has put out to bed, and has received 26 proposals to operate,
its Venice Pavilion facility. According to Mr. Jessie Miller of concession
management, Recreation and Parks, the Venice test is necessary because
the dept. has been hit by declining budgets and is being forced to reduce
operations and to lay off staff. In an effort to keep its facilities operating
at the same level, to keep public use high, the department has turned
to 'innovative fund raising.' So far the Griffith Park user tax has raised
about $1 million for the hard pressed department and managers hope to
repeat this success on a reduced level at the Pavilion facility.
Video Games and Waterslides
Recreation and Parks plans to re-open the hot dog
stand and the roller skate and bicycle rental concession at the ocean
end of the pavilion. Two newly proposed concession ideas are being considered
by the financially strapped department. One is to install a significant
number of video games (how many is not certain) in and near the pavilion.
Such games are considered to be money makers and are being used to entice
prospective bidders to up the antes on their concession bids. The video
game idea is in fact a department pilot. If it is profitable it could
be installed in other facilities operated by the dept.
No Opposition to be Heard
Video game arcades are not
new to Venice. Several years ago when promoter Allen Saffron opened his
video game 'tent' and earned the sobbriquet 'the tent man,' there was
a huge outcry from concerned businesspeople and residents. The proposed
facility, located only a few yards south of the pavilion, would bring
a boisterous and perhaps criminal element into the area. An energetic
but ultimately unsuccessful effort to defeat Saffron was begun, culminating
in the 'Venice funeral' staged before the Coastal Commission when Frank
Sirrocco emerged out of a coffin to confront startled and angry bureaycrats.
A memorable moment.
Curiously, this new proposal
for what may be eve a larger project has been met with a deafening silence
and public apathy. According to Miller only about 30 people showed up
at the pavilion several weeks ago to hear a presentation by him and there
was only one person who spoke against the games.
essions) would require Coastal
Permits and would probably have to provide additional parking. Miller
disputes this as far ad the video games are concerned but agrees that
more parking must be provided if and when a restaurant goes into the pavilion.
Additionally the Commission is concerned about overuse of North Venice
and underutilization of the Peninsula beaches by the public. Staff has
suggested that Recreation and Parks might consider the idea of putting
the theme water park and waterslide on the peninsula beach to ease congestion
in North Venice and more evenly distributing public use on all of Venice's
beaches. People interested in the project can In the wake of the Saffron
episode the City Council passed an ordinance forbidding game arcadesin
the Venice area but, accoding to Councilwoman Russell's field deputy Carol
Shapiro, this ordinance has lapsed. Presently video arcades can be established
in Venice without police commission approval as long as less than five
machines are involved. Machines have been places in a roller skate rental
shop on Windward and most recently in the empty building on Ocean Front
and Westminster, across from the Lafayette Cafe.
Fun Park Concept Promoted
Another proposal received
by the department which has receives serious consideration is one that
would put up a portable water slide on the grassy site in front of Horizen
and Ocean Front. The waterslide is shaped like a giant corkscrew, about
80 feet in diameter and 40-50 feet high. This concession too would be
operated privately with the department receiving a percentage of the take.
A third proposal under consideration
would be to turn the Pavilion into a chain type restaurant with seating.
So far the only opposition
to the department's plans have been presented by Mrs. Russell and by the
Coastal Commission. According to Carol Shapiro the Councilwoman is neutral
on the video games. She is telling her constituents however that no games
can be installed in or about the Pavilion until after the City issues
a conditional use permit to the department. The issuance of a permit involves
a public hearing. But department spokesman Miller insists that no such
permit is required and backs up his position with a City Attorney's opinion.
Miller claims that Recreation and Parkd can issue a 120 day permit for
the video games and continue to renew it indefinitely without public hearing.
He admits it would be politic to hold a hearing but that could take months,
the summer season would be over, and the opporunity for increased revenues
John and Martha and Carla and
Tom and Jane and Carol
by Carol Fondiller
I was sitting on one of the few solid benches remaining
on the Ocean Front Walk, watching the few remaining elderly being used
as slaloms by one of our many illiterate roller skaters, and skimming
of all things the Santa Monica Evening Outlook. The Outlook is the only
paper one can read the first and last page simultaneously if you hold
it up to the light.
A headline caught my eye. It went something like
"Sen John Schmitz's Mistress Accused of Child
The article went on to state that yes, this was
the very same Sen. Schmitz who was expelled from the Committee on the
Status of Women. He was expelled from that committee after to referred
to a group of pro-Choice women who were testifying before the committee,
as women with "...hard, Jewish, questionably female faces."
The very same Schmitz who wanted to kill the poor
by taking away welfare benefits from single women who had children, and
who wanted the state of California to stop abortion funding to low-income
women had been, so the speak, caught with his hand in the cookie jar.
Gloria Allred, a feminist attorney was testifying
before the Committee. Schmitz called her a "slick butch lawyeress."
She handed him a chastity belt.
When asked by a channel 2 reporter if he intended
to take it home to his wife, he snapped, "My wife doesn't need one."
How very right (if you'll excuse the expression)
you are, Johnny, but you -?
It's always gratifying to me to watch a self-appointed
guardian of my morals to get caught in his own trap.
I mean here's lame duck State Senator John Schmitz
from Orange Cow, living in the affluent ex-urb of Corona Del Mar with
his wife and seven legitimate children, one of whom was a godparent, unknowingly,
to his father's latest child begotten of his paramour.
Mrs. S. lives in Tustin, a town way over on the
other side of the tracks from Corona Del Mar.
She supports herself and Sen. Schmitz's two illegitimate
children by working as a stock clerk at the El Toro Marine Base. She did
precinct work for the local Republican Party to elect Sen. John Schmitz.
Sen. John Schmitz had also been drummed out of the
super reactionary John Birch Society for his remarks about various races
and organizations. The John Birch Society members might think that all
Jews are commies, and vice versa, and all single women with kids on welfare
got that way on purpose by copulation with the devil or luring honest
men - well you know what the Bible and St. Augustine think about women
- it's all our fault. The John Birch Society after a flaming youth of
accusing everyone from Supreme Court Justice Warren to President Dwight
Eisenhower of being communist dupes, has been settling into a respectable
maturity, give or take a few lapses here and there of arming themselves
with bazookas, mortars and other weapons slipped to them by some sympathetic
These Birchers want to be the Brahmins of the right.
It's not what you think, it's how you say it.
They might agree with Sen. Schmitz, but they wouldn't
come out and say it...that's so vulgar. Like burning a cross on the lawn.
After all, you have to get a few sympathetic Jews
Blacks Chicanos and yes even sinful, single women to be the foot soldiers
to get you elected and then - eliminate them.
Mrs. Sen. John Schmitz appears every Saturday at
5 p.m. on Channel 4 on a show called Free for All unless it's pre-empted
by a ball game.
She has come out against busing, state and federal
funds for child care, against rent control, for more money spent on the
military and supporting money and arms sent to the government of El Salvador.
So, don't feel sorry for Mrs. Schmitz.
When the story of Senator Schmitz's peccadilloes
came out about his illegitimate children, Sen. Schmitz commented, "I
should get the Right to Life father of the year award."
A daughter of Senator Schmitz's mistress by a previous
marriage said that since the scandal had erupted, Senator Schmitz had
discontinued his visits, and that the Senator had never contributed financially
to the upkeep of this two illegitimate children. This has not been denied
by Senator Schmitz.
No wonder the right is against "sin."
They do it so badly
It's alleged that while Sen. Schmitz's mistress
was in the hospital recovering from the birth of her and the Senator's
second love child, the baby sitter, known only as Gloria, had abused the
older child and has since disappeared. She was described by the Senator
as being a "Jew or Puerto Rican from New York."
Now listen to that last quote - "A Jew or Puerto
Rican from New York."
Not, she might have been Jewish of Puerto Rican
with a New York accent, but a "Jew or Puerto Rican from New York."
Implying to Sen. Schmitz, one of those sallow oily skinned foreigners,
one of the Unter Mensch from that sin capitol of the world where the Democrat
peace marcher prostitute commie homo nigger kike conspiracy meet in Times
Square fornicating plotting sitting astride our fair Republic bent on
sucking out its vital Indo-European protestant juices, draining it dry
to enervate it by its vile practices and importing depraved foreign ideas
like uncensored libraries, birth control advice, rape hot lines and -
gasp! Equal opportunity no matter what one's race sex or sexual preference
to the groin of the pure Beaver Cleaver small towns, and making our Rube
Republic go broke by spending for fripperies like schools, housing, medical
care, distracting it from shooting off its guns like a real man, and thus
rendering it impotent against the attack of the GIANT COMMIE, and I don't
want to go any further into equating anyone's sexual hang ups with their
I mean, some one might do it to me - right? Sen
Johnny, a lame duck when leaving the same legislature that dismissed him
from the Committee on the Status of Women for making racist and sexist
remarks, got thanked for his "Dedicated Service" by his fellow
When the Senate sent a bill to Governor Brown that
would authorize the Commission on the Status of Women to act as a lobbying
group in Sacramento, Lame Duck Schmitz opposed this saying the Commission
"...is a bunch of left wingers...They're women, but they don't speak
for the women of California."
Implying of course that Sen. Schmitz knows what
those women want.
John Schmitz's mistress had the charge of child
abuse against her dropped. There goes my dream of going to the Orange
Cow courthouse as the clear-eyed and objective reporter for the Free Venice
But fascism unfortunately is not exclusive to the
You remember Jane "Free Speech" Fonda?
Seems she's suing some film historian for writing an unauthorized biography
From what I understand the book is practically dull
in the reverence it accords her.
She's also suing Doubleday for publishing it, and
threatening to sue Doubleday and any publication for printing any advertisements
of the book.
What with this and the new law that's passed that
threatens anyone who names a CIA operative or other government undercover
agent - even if that government agent acts as an agent provocateur - with
jail, we won't be reading anything but soft drink advertisements. Thanks
This is the same Jane Fonda who pled with the now
defunct Venice Town Council to speak out against the Los Angeles City
Council's attempt to censure Fonda's speaking out against the war in Vietnam.
To paraphrase George Orwell's "Animal Farm,"
free speech is only for certain people or to paraphrase every dictator
and pimp, "Trust me, I know what is good for you."
Speaking of the Honda Babies Jane and Tom, have
I got an anecdote I've been dying to tell.
I preface this by saying that I have a fascist detector
that's as unerring and accurate as a bat's radar.
When Tom Hayden was running for the Senate in '76
a benefit was held for him in Venice at the Comeback Inn. The patio was
jammed with Jane and Tom fans. I among them. It was a hot sunny autumn
afternoon, and because it was a benefit, the more beer you bought, the
more you benefited Tom. And I was benefiting Tom. Jane got up playing
candidate's wife. Gone the shaggy haircut and army fatigues. There were
people there who had been battling since Sacco and Vanzetti and the Spanish
Jane was hittin' us all up for more money. Left
over hippies, old commies, college students, cannonfodder beatnicks, beachnicks,
people who wanted to see the star of Barbarella and one of the Chicago
Jane started off, "Now you can give us more
money. You can donate $5 a week if you give up your dope for Tom."
This was 1976, the interest rates were lower then.
There was a gasp from a square-jawed, grey-haired
woman sitting next to me. She was one of the most dependable telephone
tree people any organization could ever get.
Jane was stereotyping us, just as the Evening Outlook
and television and other media had done for years.
Venice a bunch of dope-smoking hippy beat free-love
I had drunk enough to become supersensitive. I chugalugged
another beer. Then Tom came on telling us of Sheriff Hongisto and the
other communities who had gotten it together and completely ignoring Venice.
Which at that time was doing pretty well, considering that we had no paid
volunteers, and in spite of the fact that Jane and Tome were just too
busy with really important things to even think of Venice, except when
they wanted foot soldiers and canvassers.
Questions came. Big abstract questions. My attention
A bearded man, bare to the waist, tattoos telling
of love and tigers across his chest and wiry muscles stood up and asked:
"What about the canal?"
Through my blur I heard talk of gun boats, tariffs
The man fixed me with his one good eye: "What
canal is he talking about?"
"Panama, I think," I slurred.
"Shit, man, I was askin' about Howland Canal!"
Now, it seems that the holier than thou incorruptible
author of the Port Huron statement, the great man who knows what the MASSES
want, has sided with the Israeli invasion of Lebanon to get all them liberal
Jewish voters to vote for him in the 44th Assembly District.
Well I'm a Jew, and as my ancestors came from
Europe, I'm sure that some of my relatives were killed in the Holocaust.
But I always felt that the survivors of that should
learn something and that is not to act like their oppressors, the Nazis,
which it seems to me the Israelis are doing.
I have little love for the P.L.O. who bomb school
buses and athletes, but bombing schools, hospitals, old people, babies
and civilians in the name of peace doesn't wash either. To decimate one
of the great cities of the world, Lebanon keeping people in concentration
camps, writing numbers on the arms of civilian non-combatants, denying
water and food to civilians...
So you think the Jews are more moral, should act nobler than anyone else?"
Yes! Yes! Yes!
If we keep talking about the Holocaust and antiSemitism
and saying "Never again," we should also say never again to
degrading and dehumanizing people.
But Tom's got to get them votes. It's for our own
good you know. Just like Sen. Schmitz is doin it to us for our own good,
So you can't vote for what's-his-name and Hayden
is the lesser of two evils.
And what have the two candidates of the opportunist
party and the adventurist party been debating? How much longer one has
lived in Santa Monica. At last count Hayden's opponent has traced his
California roots back to 1840.
Well, while they're being totally irrelevant
and obfuscating all over the place, and if all the wasted money on radio
ads makes you sick, vote for the Peace and Freedom Candidate, for Goddess
Jack Hampton supports affordable housing, the nuclear
freeze (when will Hayden wobble on that one?) and is against the Israeli
invasion of Lebanon. Jack Hampton has been active in the Peace and Freedom
Party since its inception. The Peace and Freedom Party started here in
Venice. Vote for someone for a refreshing change. I mean Hampton ain't
no glory hog who gets so caught up with winning he forgets why he's running.
Saturday October 9th
October 1982 #154
John Lennon's 42nd birthday will be commemorated
with a series of events evoking peace, non-violence, active involvement
and celebration. On this special day the Alliance for Survival will hold
a "Birthday-Candlelight Peace Vigil" at Santa Monica Beach,
just south of Ocean Park Blvd. People will gather at 5:00 pm to share
the sunset, at 6:00 a program of poetry, music and speakers will begin.
At 7:30 pm a "Walk for Life" will begin arriving at the Church
in Ocean Park at about 8:00 pm (235 Hill St. SM) where there will be a
benefit dance and peace celebration. Reggae and freedom music will be
performed by UNITY, a group from Belize, Central America. Donation $5.00.
"Give Peace a Chance" was one of John Lennon's political messages
to the world and a fitting theme for this event.
Letters: Another Satisfied Customer
November 1982 #155
This is a letter that I don't really
expect to be published, but I've been meaning to write it for a long time
now; thirteen years in fact.
I first read your paper when I moved
to Venice in 1969, at the tail end of the Hippie movement. There were
still Canal Festivals and body painting and psychedelics, but for the
most part the whole thing was really all over, or at least in the final
The Beachhead struck me as being very
negative, but the ideas of revolution and change were still desperately
hanging on, and I thought you were also still trying desperately to hang
on to lost hopes by opposing all the establishment moves that threatened
the naive but well-meaning ideas of the Hippie Revolution now winding
down into the final stages of a lost struggle.
But in the thirteen years since, the
Beachhead has continued to be negative about everything that doesn't fit
the preconceived notion of some radical avant-garde idea of the way things
are supposed to be.
The fact is though, that things have
mellowed out and in fact changed considerably during this period, and
just looking at things in retrospect should have told you that these ideas
didn't work because they couldn't work, and your continued screaming rampage
isn't going to change anything now anymore than it did then.
Where is it written that Venice belongs
to the poor? People who have money have always had the right to live wherever
they want to, and where they live, they are going to make changes necessary
to enhance their lifestyle. It's THEIR money and THEIR lifestyle and THEIR
comfort that will dictate how things will be. If the poor don't like that,
then they have to make a lot of money and not be poor. Maybe that sucks,
but that's how life is.
Aging Hippies and radical publications
everywhere have recognized and adapted to these general truths and in
general have changed their tone to a more positive approach to things,
and a grudging awareness that things are the way they are and the only
approach to anything is a positive one.
Your continued carping and bitching thirteen
years after the fact is sad, at best, and stupid and sophomoric at worst.
This is 1982, whether you approve of that fact or not. It's time for The
Beachhead to grow up.
Don Schraier, Venice
(The Beachhead responds: Gosh,
Don, just who is it that's forced you to suffer thru 13 years of reading
a paper you dislike so much?)
Remembrance of Things Past
Arnold on Reds
November 1982 #155
November 1919 - Seventy-three years ago
this month in Venice. World War I was over and the Bolsheviks had staged
a successful revolution in Russia.
In the United States anti-communist hysteria
was on the rise. There was lots of public radical activity by the left
and there was a feeling that revolution might just be around the corner.
Not everyone was elated. Naturally, people in Venice got into the act.
A young man named Otto Benninger, at
one time a clown at the Race Thru the Clouds amusement had just returned
from Siberia. He had been with the U.S. Expeditionary Forces who, with
the French and English (they had intervened in European Russia) were trying
to topple the Bolsheviks. Otto was in a San Francisco hospital and wrote
home to his parents.
"Bolshevists, Chink bandits, vodka
and Japs caused us doughboys in Siberia enough trouble to last a coons
age," he wrote. "We went to Siberia to establish an eastern
front but we never saw a front. We longed for a regular war and everybody
was fighting mad all the time. The long haired Bolshevist was your friend
in the morning, and shooting you that night. Next day he would be going
about his farmwork. Starving, sick and dying peasants were everywhere.
No government existed; it was all robbery and bush-whacking. Bolshevism
as we saw it in Siberia mustn't come to America. Vodka, the native's firewater,
is the country's greatest drawback. It makes the people devilish. No wonder
Bolshevism thrives under vodka..."
In November the City of Los Angeles ordered
all Socialists, Radicals, I.W.W.s and assorted troublemakers out of the
city. No person of radical persuasion was to be permitted to speak in
public. Bay area police chiefs feared that the radicals might head here,
"locate in the bay district." Said Chief Loomis of Venice: "There
are only a few sympathizers of the I.W.W. in Venice and I have them under
surveillance. Should there be any attempt by the Reds to colonize in Venice
I will know it the very moment the attempt is made."
Then on November 19: "Venice took
the initiative to prevent an invasion of the Reds and other undesirables.
Twenty-five patriotic and determined citizens assembled in the office
of Chief Loomis and perfected an organization for home protection. It
will operate in a manner similar to that of the American Protective League
which did such effective work during the war.
"It will be a secret organization
as to its membership and work. All complaints about suspicious people
will be thoroughly investigated and appropriate action taken.
"The objective will be to prevent
Reds or I.W.W.s from getting any foothold in Venice. A similar organization
will be set up in Santa Monica. All suspicious people will be investigated
and any attempt to hold open air meetings in any place in the city will
be instantly checked and those involved immediately arrested.
"It is the intention of the directors
to appoint captains for each precinct, who in turn will name lieutenants
who in turn must be sanctioned by the directors. The efforts of the members,
most of whom will not be known to one another, will be aimed at preventing
any undesirables from gaining a foothold in the city. The American Legion
will work closely with the new organization."
Then on Dec. 8 Professor N.N. Waslekar,
an astrologer who practiced on Ocean Front Walk was quoted: "There
is no reason for fearing that the world will come to an end on Dec. 17."
However another astrologer-professor on the Walk, Albert F. Porta predicted
that great floods and an earthquake would hit Los Angeles and the Bay
District on that date. Wow!