Los Angeles is a creative place. You can depend on the city to figure out some innovative way to punish businesses.

last week, City Council members decided they didn’t like Arizona’s new
law that cracks down on illegal immigrants, so they came up with an
out-of-the-box way to flog businesses. They ordered city departments to
see if they could kill any contracts with companies headquartered in
that state.

teach those companies. How dare they be located in Arizona and actually
sell their goods or services here? Los Angeles will make them hurt.

it’s perfectly fine for the City Council to protest someone else’s law.
What’s not so fine is to take out their anger on businesses. This is a
thought that probably never occurred to our city leaders, but most
companies headquartered in Arizona didn’t have a thing to do with that
law. They’re innocents caught in the crossfire.

imagine most businesses there, as everywhere, are struggling in this
difficult economy, trying to keep moving, to trim where they can and
borrow if they can and figure out some way at the end of the month to
make payroll – you know, making the hard choices city officials don’t

if any of those Arizona business people were stupid enough to sell
something to the city of Los Angeles, well, maybe they should forget
their dreams of sending their kids to college. Any business that comes
near Los Angeles is going to get hurt, sooner or later. The city will
figure out some creative way to do that.

Here’s another thought that probably didn’t occur to our city electeds: Maybe this boycott will hurt us.

example, consider that the city-owned Port of Los Angeles gets its
clean-burning trucks from Arizona companies. So maybe we’ll now need to
buy more expensive trucks from someplace else to keep the port’s Clean
Truck Program going. (The Clean Truck Program, in case you missed it,
is the one that the mayor dreamed up to kill off hundreds of small
businesses at the port so that the Teamsters could have an easier time
taking over there.)

there’s another way we could be hurt: Maybe there’ll be a
counterboycott. Think about it. According to Pew Research Center poll
last week, fully 73 percent of Americans said they approve the concept
of requiring people to produce documents verifying their legal status
if police ask for them. Fifty-nine percent approve of the Arizona law.

there’s a lot more of them than us. And if they get ticked off enough,
maybe they’ll start a counterboycott that will banish L.A. companies
and products. Actually, Los Angeles may be particularly vulnerable,
since this is the place that came up with the whole sanctuary city

Indeed, the City Council is playing with fire with this boycott. It may end up burning local companies.

that I think about it, the council members may be grateful if outsiders
boycott L.A. companies. That way, the council members don’t have to
dream up another creative new way to punish local businesses