I don’t know what it’s like in whatever third-world, former-communist, dictatorial kleptocracy you’re from, but here in California, you can turn right on a red light. This isn’t news, either; it’s been the law since before I was born.
Los Angeles suffers more traffic delays than any other city in America (duh). Part of the reason is drivers stopping when they shouldn’t. Another reason is people not going when they should.
Now, I’m not saying you should run down pedestrians or peel around the corner without looking. (In fact, legally, you’re supposed to wait for a pedestrian who’s on the far side of a five-lane road; I learned this while picketing during the WGA strike.)
I’m just saying, if the road is clear, for the love of Christ, go.
Conversely, if you’re not planning on turning right at this intersection, don’t get in the right-hand lane. Some people have this Batman villain-like obsession with sticking to the right lane, in all circumstances, even if there’s no one in the left lane.
I always wind up stuck behind these people, drumming my fingers on the steering wheel, staring at the red light, willing it to change, but it won’t change, so I flip from 98.7 playing a late 90′s Foo Fighters song to KROQ playing an early 90′s Foo Fighters song, and my mom’s voice comes in my head, telling me, “A watched pot never boils,” and she’s right, this light will never, ever, ever change, and I’ll be stuck behind this moron forever, even though he could have moved to the next lane and oh, God, why won’t this light change?
In short, please use the left hand lane if you don’t intend to turn.