When L.A.’s Mayors Were Crooks

The Legendary Owner of Clifton’s Cafeteria Fought to Keep the City Clean

Clifton's Cafeteria owner Clifford Clinton helped end corruption in L.A.

Flipping channels recently one night I landed on the 2012 film Gangster Squad. A vague memory of the pre-release studio trailer played in my head, followed by the thought that I might watch this epic. But then I was jolted back to the present by the shocking visual of a prosthetic-enhanced Sean Penn mumbling through a Mickey Cohen impression both too ridiculous to watch and too hard to turn away from.

Why, Hollywood, why? Every 10 years or so, the studios feed us a glossy if noirish postcard from Los Angeles …

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