Is it just me, or is there a new wave of political activism in the SGV? Can it be that people have reached the legendary "We're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore?" point, especially on the issue of McMansionizing their towns?
Yesterday we were treated to the refreshing sight of Sierra Madre residents demonstrating against the developmental desecration of the Mater Dolorosa Monastery, and by the very people who are supposed to be its caretakers. The voters over in Monrovia just dumped their faithless Mayor and are today gunning for even more political scalps. And now a group referring to themselves as Concerned Arcadians have begun a campaign they are calling "Take Back Our City Council."
So how do they plan to do that? By recalling three sitting members of the Arcadia City Council.
Yard signs, like the one pictured above, have begun to pop up all over the Peacock Peoples Republic, much to the chagrin of those whose names are featured on them in bright red. It is a fine looking sign too, and quite a sight for sore eyes.
The website Save The Arcadia Highlands has made the case for this recall (link). Thanks to the miracle of screenshots, we can show you here what they have to say.
Great stuff. Obviously the Sierra Madre Tattler will be watching this one closely. In my opinion the fight to stop McMansions in Arcadia is pretty much joined at the hip with what we are fighting for in Sierra Madre. Personally, I don't see that much of a difference. It is all basically one struggle.
John Wuo continues to deny his GemCoin woes
But I have gotten a little ahead of myself. Here is some excellent reporting from Joe Taglieri of the Arcadia Weekly (link):
Gemcoin Controversy: Adding to the charged atmosphere in the council chamber over real estate development, in a July 1 article Arcadia Weekly linked former mayor and current councilmember John Wuo to a business headquartered in Arcadia that is using the councilman and his status as an elected official extensively in its marketing material for a financial investment product called Gemcoin, described as a “crypto-currency” similar to Bitcoin.
Tim Burch and David Arvizu are Highlands residents who consistently attend council meetings and voice their displeasure with the panel’s recent actions. Both berated Wuo for his endorsement of GemCoin, which they likened to a Ponzi scheme, and his business relationships with executives of the digital currency’s parent organizations – USFIA Inc., Alliance Financial Group and the U.S. China Consultation Association.
“City council people, mayors, should not be endorsing companies – especially ones that have been identified [as] or suspected of being pyramid schemes,” said Arvizu, head of Save the Arcadia Highlands. “This is an ethics violation, mixing politics with a pyramid scheme.”
Arvizu requested council members put the issue of Wuo’s Gemcoin connection on their next meeting agenda to “discuss this in public … and admonish his inappropriate behavior.” Wuo did not respond to Arvizu’s comments about Gemcoin at the July 7 council meeting, but he did on Tuesday. “Please be responsible with your comments and [don’t make] unfounded allegations,” Wuo told Arvizu.
“The first time I was Mayor I attended over 700 events in … Arcadia or the San Gabriel Valley,” Wuo said. “I’ve made a lot of ceremonial speeches and always wish them success in their business. I’m not going to go up there and say I wish your business fails.”
Wuo then reiterated comments he made in an interview with Arcadia Weekly: “I don’t know anything about GemCoin, I don’t have any financial interest.”
He also rebuffed the allegation Arvizu made July 7 that Wuo may be stashing Gemcoin compensation into an overseas bank account. “I challenge you to show me if I have an offshore account or have an account in a foreign country,” Wuo said after denying he has such assets.
Arvizu augmented his comments with a video monitor positioned so that council members and cameras that broadcast meetings could view videos posted online showing Wuo speaking at Gemcoin marketing events.
“I was invited to present awards … and the other one was a news conference [Gemcoin founder Steve Chen] invited me to say a few words,” Wuo explained. “Those are ceremonial speeches. It’s just a very regular, ceremonial, congratulatory speech.”
In the spirit of good times and fun, here is a video of John "I know nothing" Wuo lavishing some rather fulsome praise on Steve Chen and his GemCoin empire. Here he certainly does seem to be well-versed on the topic, and attempts to explain what it is all about to anyone who cares to listen.
|Click here for the video.|