Mendocino County Today: Friday, May 13, 2016
by AVA News Service, May 13, 2016
FOR MONTHS NOW, Fort Bragg opponents of Measure U have straight-up lied that if Measure U passes existing groups like Art Explorers, Project Sanctuary and so on would have to close. In fact, as coast attorney Rod Jones explains, these existing downtown non-profits are exempt from the provisions of U. They are grandfathered in, protected because they are there. Measure U is to prevent the Hospitality House from moving in to the Old Coast Hotel. Period.
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Subject: Re: Measure U is Legal
Yup! And all this time they've been lying that U would evict Art Explorers etc. I wonder if this is Ms. Zutler's doing?
Measure U is Legal, Enforceable and Not Discriminatory
Measure U is Smart City Planning and U INCLUDES everyone who lives here, not just an entitled few.
Arguments against U are a “BLUFF”
In May of 2015 the Proponents of Measure U received a letter from the city that tried to stop us from going forward with Measure U. It was a “bluff” that said that the retroactivity was not enforceable and that the measure “may be construed as discriminatory”. The attorney for the Proponents of Measure U responded. The Ballot Title and Summary we needed to put Measure U on the ballot was sent, signatures collected and now we can VOTE.
Here is the attorney’s response to the anti-U campaign. Please read it and VOTE wisely...
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RODNEY RICHARD JONES
Post Office Box 189
Mendocino, California 95460
May 10, 2016
Dear Concerned Citizens of Fort Bragg:
You have asked me for an opinion letter concerning what you believe are misguided coverage and published pieces about Measure U appearing in the Advocate starting back in September 2015 and continuing to the present time. You have indicated too that anti-U forces are doing the same.
It is one thing to have an honest difference of opinion. It is quite another to intentionally misconstrue a proposed law in an effort to defeat it and fool the public. Now it is possible that opponents and the Advocate staff simply haven't bothered to read the law. That would be irresponsible. If they have read it, their conscious misinterpretation is unforgivable.
Measure U is not complicated. A law degree is not needed to comprehend what it plainly says: “A social service organization is not a permitted use under any circumstances unless such organization was established and existed at a location within the CBD zoning district prior to January 1, 2015.”
Allow me to highlight:
- It does not “affect every social service organization” now located in the Central Business District and, by its very literal terms, exempts existing social service groups like Art Explorers, Project Sanctuary and Parents & Friends that “existed...prior to January 1, 2015.”
- Zoning and similar regulatory laws often change and often the changes are accompanied by “grandfather” provisions like this to save or exempt, as a matter of fairness, pre-existing uses of property and avoid a claim of a government “taking” of private property.
- The law is retroactive to January 1, 2015. That's what it says. The Hospitality Center both was aware of the opposition to its establishment at the Old Coast Hotel prior to closing its special purchase deal. Everybody knows that this law targets that activity at that location and nobody else. So who would even be trying to apply the law to the established and existing organizations – the City? There is zero possibility that anyone would do so and the law plainly does not apply to such groups.
- Zoning laws regulate what kinds of things can go where. An amusement park or asphalt plant is not allowed in the CBD but might be permitted nearby and within city limits, depending on the zone and district. Zoning laws are used to preserve a sensible quality of life for all residents of any particular area.
I hope this helps to clarify the plain meaning of the law. Measure U is intended to effectively disgorge the Old Coast Hotel occupants but it clearly doesn't displace anyone else.
Rod Jones, Mendocino
PARTY LINERS. From a story by Adam Randall in Thursday's Ukiah Daily Journal: "Both judicial candidates Tuesday essentially supported the new county courthouse in Ukiah, but said since it’s a state courthouse and primarily funded by the state, it was really the decision of the Judicial Council to move forward with the new infrastructure. Faulder said he thinks the current courthouse 'isn’t a good one,' and dangerous in a lot of ways, including the fact that inmates, even the dangerous ones, are walked down the same public sidewalks and into the same hallways of the courthouse that are shared by the public. He also said that’s dangerous for youths coming from juvenile hall who need to have their identity protected. Pekin cited the need for seismic retrofitting for the current courthouse, something that could take years and cost a lot of money in order to make it safe, as a fair reason for a new state-owned courthouse for the community."
BOTH JUDICIAL CANDIDATES are simply mouthing the local judicial party line. Without again enumerating all the reasons a new County Courthouse is the worst idea for both the County and Ukiah to come along since Willits was similarly gulled into building a new County Courthouse, which was soon abandoned, and now sits a-moulderin', an eternal eyesore in the middle of town, it is the worst idea since the Willits Courthouse.
CANDIDATE FAULDER cites "danger" from the "dangerous ones" and the need to spare juvenile offenders "embarrassment" as they're walked into the present County Courthouse from transport vans. First off, a lot of adult court stuff and juvenile matters could be handled out at the Low Gap holding pens without driving prisoners back and forth to downtown. But their majesties prefer to have everything come to them rather than save everyone time and money with these ridiculous daily prisoner commutes. The doomed will still have to be driven back and forth to the new Courthouse on Perkins, although they, the dangerous, about one percent of the Jail population if that, will be driven straight into the new Courthouse basement and whisked upstairs by elevator to be masticated by the judicial grinder. I feel safer already, and I hope the judges do, too. But danger, if that's a consideration which, in our opinion it's the remotest of possibilities, the real danger comes from driving inmates a couple of miles round trip back and forth to downtown Ukiah. The vans, conceivably, could be hijacked en route. But, as our helping professionals might remind us, the paranoid personality thinks possibilities, rational people act on probabilities. The likelihood of danger is practically nil. (Incidentally, ask the candidates if they'll keep a gun under their robes like some of their colleagues do.)
EARTHQUAKES. A really big one is likely to knock everything down, including a new Courthouse. The lesser quakes won't knock much of anything down. The present Courthouse can be retrofitted.
THE BUILDING of a new County Courthouse by the State Judicial Council came as the result of years of local judicial agitation from Judge David Nelson especially with the rest of our overlarge judicial posse simply saluting. And, as we never tire of pointing out, the Judicial Council, staffed of course by politically appointed judicial hacks, is funded out of fines and court fees paid by everyone, just like taxes. And if you don't pay, you go to jail until you do pay your ransom. Fines and fees are way too high, as is judge pay, and they fall especially hard on working people, but this grim fact is unlikely to be mentioned by judge candidates who, by the way, you will never see or hear from again after the election unless you happen to be in court.
PS. (BY MARK SCARAMELLA): Of course we don’t know if UDJ Reporter Randall transcribed everything that the candidates might have said, but Candidate Faulder told us last month that he would make sure, at least, that the issue of who pays for the secondary effects of the new courthouse — disposition of the old one, support office impact on the DA’s office and staff, the public defender, Probation, Jail staffing, etc. — was raised in any future discussion he had about the courthouse. But no mention was made in Thursday’s UDJ story on the courthouse. They haven’t even discussed what the impact might be, much less who will pay for it. There appears to be a conscious effort to pretend that our Robed Builders from San Francisco will just plop down their new courthouse a few blocks away from downtown and everything else will just magically adjust with no disruption or additional cost. That’s completely wrong. One of the reasons the Deputy Sheriff’s Association is on record as officially opposing the new courthouse is that they know that the new courthouse will cost the County a large chunk of change out of the General Fund and the Sheriff’s budget (and their salaries) will inevitably take a hit. The judges obviously don’t care and the candidates don’t seem to care either, even when it’s explicitly pointed out and understood.
BIG HONORS for Will Parrish, our talented enviro reporter. Will's story "Fish Out of Water/Coho v. Pinot/Running Dry Fast" was 2nd-place winner for Environmental Reporting in the California Newspaper Publishers Association's 2015 Better Newspapers Contest. The story ran in the Sept. 2, 2015 North Bay Bohemian, and the AVA published it in two installments called "Running Dry Fast." More info on the awards here: http://epublish.multiad.com/CNPA_BNC_2015/. Will’s story is noted on page 9 under "North Bay Bohemian."
CESAR SOTO: ALL EMPIRE!
All-Empire Athletes of the Year honored
by Lori Carter
Nearly 150 gifted high school athletes from around the Redwood Empire won Press Democrat All-Empire Athlete of the Year awards Wednesday night at the Friedman Event Center in Santa Rosa.
A crowd of more than 800 student athletes, their families and coaches attended the 22nd annual awards.
Eight overall winners — four boys and four girls from both large and small schools — won college scholarships for either their athletic prowess or scholar-athlete talents.
“This was as strong a group of nominees as we’ve had,” said Press Democrat Sports Editor James Barger. “Choosing the winners was very difficult with so many accomplished athletes and impressive students.”
The overall winners were:
Large school: Maria Carrillo soccer phenom Madison Gonzalez, who will attend Santa Clara University and study public health; and Anthony Spallino of Windsor, who excelled in football and wrestling. He will attend Colorado School of Mines on scholarship.
Small school: Rylee Bowen of Sonoma Academy, who is only a sophomore but impressed the judges with her already established national profile as a distance runner; and Cesar Soto of Anderson Valley, who played football, basketball and baseball for the Panthers and will attend San Jose State University to study business administration.
Large school: Delaney White of Santa Rosa High, the first four-time winner of the North Bay League cross-country championship who carried a 4.4 grade-point average and will attend the University of Nevada on an athletic scholarship; and Edwin Reyes of Sonoma Valley, who was team captain in track and soccer and defensive player of the year in basketball, while serving as student body president and carrying a 4.18 GPA. He will attend Macalester College in Minnesota.
Small school: Chloe Colbert of Sonoma Academy, who thrice won the soccer player of the year award and played basketball until she broke an ankle, while earning a 4.0 GPA she’ll take to college; and Payton Rockwood of St. Helena, who won awards as a football and basketball player while making the National Honor Society and keeping a 4.3 GPA. He will study business at UCLA.
The Press Democrat received a total of 143 nominations from schools in Mendocino, Lake and Sonoma counties, encompassing the NBL, Sonoma County League, the North Central Leagues I, II and III and the Small School Bridge League.
The nomination forms included information about their athletic and academic achievements, their hobbies and interests and their involvement in school and community activities.
From that information and feedback received from people who know the athletes well, a committee of Press Democrat employees — primarily the people who regularly cover high school athletes — selected the eight overall scholarship winners.
Those eight received $500 scholarships to use as they begin their college sports and academic careers.
(Courtesy, the Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
DID HEADS ROLL?
Fort Bragg Unified School District Board Meeting Thursday, May 12, 6:00pm at Dana Gray Elementary
If you want to watch these FBUSD school meetings yourself go to www.mendocinotv.com!
On May 11, 2016, at 9:01 PM, John Penez wrote:
The Fort Bragg Unified School District Board of Trustees will be holding a School Board meeting at Dana Gray Elementary School on Thursday, May 12th at 6:00 pm. This extremely critical forum comes at a time when the fall-out from its scandalous leadership continues to mount. Two principals have resigned in as many weeks and hundreds of parents, community members and employees are wondering what is next for the approx. 1,800 students who attend its schools. Please come and show your support for our community and its children.
“The people have the right of access to information concerning the conduct of the people’s business, and, therefore, the meetings of public bodies and the writings of public officials and agencies shall be open to public scrutiny.” — Brown Act*
STOP CUTTING BRUSH OR I’LL KILL YOU!
On 05-09-2016 at approximately 4:00 PM, Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a disturbance in the 24000 block of Shady Lane in Covelo, California. It was reported a shotgun had been brandished and a short time later came a report that gunshots had been heard. Witnesses told Deputies that Anastacio Arturo Payan, 48, of Covelo and his 62 year-old male neighbor had been in an ongoing property line dispute. On this date the neighbor was cutting brush on the disputed portion of land. Payan demanded the neighbor stop cutting the brush but the neighbor refused. As Payan grew more angry the neighbor retreated to his trailer and armed himself with a shotgun. Payan wrestled the shotgun from the neighbor's hands as the neighbor fell to the ground. Payan fired three shots into the ground near the neighbor's face and struck the neighbor with the butt of the shotgun. Witnesses stated Payan threatened to kill the neighbor, aimed the gun at the neighbor's face and pulled the trigger, yet the shotgun did not discharge. Payan was arrested for attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and making criminal threats. Payan was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $250,000 bail.
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TYPICAL TWEEK JOB
On 05-10-2016 at approximately 5:30 AM, Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a forced-entry burglary at the Uptown Mercantile in Covelo, California. The reporting party told Sheriff's Office Dispatch that the suspect, Clarence Bruno III, 27, of Covelo, was in the back of the business and in possession of an SKS type of assault-rifle. By the time Deputies arrived on scene Bruno had left the business and had been located by Round Valley Tribal Police outside a nearby business. Bruno had been detained and property from Uptown Mercantile was found nearby. Uptown Mercantile video showed Bruno and an unidentified female accomplice wearing a hooded sweatshirt break the business's front window and remove approximately $2,300.00 worth of clothing and other property. Piles of stolen clothing were recovered near where Bruno had been detained. Ammunition of the type used by an SKS rifle was located under a pile of the stolen merchandise but the firearm was never found. Bruno was arrested for burglary, possession of ammunition by a prohibited person and violation of the terms of his Placer County probation. Bruno was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $15,000 bail.
Alona Lopez aka Lopez-Nottingham, Alona Danielle is wanted on a no bail felony for charges that include: Burglary first degree,
Buy/Receive Stolen Property and
Failure to Appear. Height: 5' 9".
Weight: 150 lbs. If you have any information regarding this individual's location, please call MCSO Dispatch at (707) 463-4086.
PUBLIC SAFETY CHAIR LINDY PETERS CLEARS AIR ON FORT BRAGG FERAL CAT SITUATION
MSP received the following from Fort Bragg Public Safety Chairman (and all-around good guy) Lindy Peters Wednesday night:
I suggest folks who were stirred-up by the reports on this website concerning the Public Safety Committee meeting (Wednesday) where we addressed safety concerns surrounding the growing population of raccoons in the harbor, take the time to watch Mendocinotv.com video coverage of said meeting. The city never threatened to remove feral cats. The USDA and Department of Fish and Wildlife told the city to take action regarding the feeding of feral cats on City Property. A citizen who lives nearby and is plagued by raccoons on his property approached me personally and asked me to look into this. I talked to the city manager and said we may have a liability issue if the unintended consequence of feeding the cats is, in fact, feeding the wildlife. If so, there is a violation according to USDA and Fish and Wildlife. I asked to put it on the agenda so that the public would have a chance to weigh-in on what I figured to be a hot button issue. No citations were ever issued. No city official or police officer attempted code enforcement. The issue was never feral cats. The agenda item reads: 'Discuss Raccoon Issue of Harbor Lite Lodge Trail.' Somehow the social network spinners turned this into the city aggressively going after feral cats. The people who showed-up at the meeting included representatives from the Coast Cat Project, the Eileen Hawthorne Foundation, the Humane Society and volunteers who help feed the cats. Once they understood the city merely took action to remove the feeding bowls and cat condos from city property due to pressure from state agencies and, in fact, wanted to work with community groups to solve the problem in a humane fashion, they wanted to buy-in and help the city work this out. We are forming a committee with various stakeholders to see if we can come up with a solution that will allow the cats to remain in the Harbor area without feeding them on City property. This problem was brought to the city's attention. The city did not, on it's own initiative, arbitrarily go after feral cats. Please watch the meeting on mendocinotv so you can draw your conclusions based on facts and not social media speculation. Thanks to mendocinosportsplus for providing initial coverage on the story.
Lindy Peters — Chair, Public Safety Committee
A DINNER AND MUSIC BENEFIT for long-time Elk and Albion Teacher's Aide Lynda Aubrey will be held Saturday, May 21 at the Greenwood Community Center in Elk. Lynda is recovering from chemotherapy and radiation treatments for neck and tongue cancer. The proceeds will help to ease Lynda's financial burden as she recuperates over the next couple of months. The fundraiser starts at 4 p.m. with appetizers and drinks while local singers, musicians and dancers will provide entertainment. The performers are Lavender Grace, Chris Skyhawk, Sue Nagle & her band Sue Mommie's Kitchen Band playing earth grooves infused with reggae, rock, and funk music, and belly dancing by Nicole Fish & Trillium Tribe. A spaghetti dinner will be served from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m..Starting at 8 p.m. one of Lynda’s favorite local bands --Pura Vida -- will play Afro-Caribbean dance music. The bar will be open all evening and desserts will be available for purchase. There will also be a raffle and a silent auction with over hundred items. Donation at the door is $20. Children under 6 years of age free. No dogs please. For more information call Anna Marie Stenberg at 964-9109.
RACIALLY PROFILING THE AB STAMPEDE, a reader notes:
While waiting for a ride to work at quarter to 7:00 in the morning for two days in a row 12 then 13 out of 15 cars that flew by were driven by Asians. Then on both days between downtown Philo and Greenwood Road, one then two times across a double yellow line was passed by Asian drivers in a big hurry. Usually the front seat passenger was slumped over asleep.
CATCH OF THE DAY, May 12, 2016
Elliott, Feitshans, Jackson
JOHNATHAN ELLIOTT, Willits. Drunk in public, failure to appear, fugitive from justice.
JAMES FEITSHANS, Ukiah. Unspecified misdemeanor.
RICK JACKSON, Willits. Unspecified offense.
Johnson, Kepler, Mejia
NOEY JOHNSON, Ukiah. Community Supervision violation.
JOSHUA KEPLER, Ukiah. Hashsis possession/possession for sale, probation revocation.
VICKIE MEJIA, Fort Bragg. Loitering, refusing to leave, probation revocation.
Perez, Sanders, Staser
JAIME PEREZ, Monterey/Willits. Under influence, no license.
THOMAS SANDERS, Willits. Drunk in public, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)
TALEASHA STASER, Covelo. Domestic assault.
‘SCREW THE NEXT GENERATION” and “Harry Reid’s a pompous ass”
Democratic congressman writes anonymous tell-all book slamming a “nation of naïve, self-absorbed sheep” as he admits he never reads the bills he votes on.
by David Martosko
Guessing Game: “The Confessions of Congressman X” is due on bookshelves May 24 and Washington is abuzz with speculation about who wrote it.
A new book threatens to blow the lid off of Congress as a federal legislator's tell-all book lays out the worst parts of serving in the House of Representatives – saying that his main job is to raise money for re-election and that leaves little time for reading the bills he votes on.
Mill City Press, a small Minnesota-based “vanity press” publisher describes “The Confession of Congressman X” as “a devastating inside look at the dark side of Congress as revealed by one of its own.”
No wonder Congressman X wants to remain anonymous for fear of retribution. His admissions are deeply disturbing.
The 84-page exposé is due in bookstores in two weeks, and Washington is abuzz with speculation about who may be behind it.
The book, a copy of which DailyMail.com has seen, discloses that the congressman is a Democrat – but not much else.
The anonymous spleen-venter has had a lot to say about his constituents, however.
Robert Atkinson, a former chief of staff and press secretary for two congressional Democrats, took notes on a series of informal talks with him — whoever he is — and is now publishing them with his permission.
“Voters claim they want substance and detailed position papers, but what they really crave are cutesy cat videos, celebrity gossip, top 10 lists, reality TV shows, tabloid tripe, and the next fucking Twitter message,” the congressman gripes in the book.
“I worry about our country's future when critical issues take a backseat to the inane utterings of illiterate athletes and celebrity twits.”
Much of what's in the book will come as little surprise to Americans who are cynical about the political process.
“Fundraising is so time-consuming I seldom read any bills I vote on,” the anonymous legislator admits. “I don't even know how they'll be implemented or what they'll cost.”
“My staff gives me a last-minute briefing before I go to the floor and tells me whether to vote yea or nay. How bad is that?”
And on controversial bills, he says, “I sometimes vote ‘yes’ on a motion and ‘no’ on an amendment so I can claim I'm on either side of an issue.”
“It's the old shell game: if you can't convince ’em, confuse ’em.”
One chapter is titled “Harry Reid's a Pompous Ass” and says the senator is “sometimes a bit too clever for his own good. The same goes for [Republican Sen. Majority Leader Mitch] McConnell and his pathetic lieutenants. Ditto for most of the House leadership bullies on both sides of the aisle. They wield too much dictatorial power, manipulating legislative procedures and denying members due process.”
The larger picture that emerges is one of disenchantment with the political process and the professional office-holders behind it.
Especially those in the Democratic Party.
“Our party used to be a strong advocate for the working class,” he says. “We still pretend to be, but we aren't. Large corporations and public employee unions grease the palms of those who have the power to determine legislative winners and losers.”
“Most of my colleagues want to help the poor and disadvantaged. To a point,” he adds. “We certainly don't want to live among them. Or mingle with them, unless it's for a soup kitchen photo op. … Poverty's a great concern as long as it's kept at a safe distance.”
Much of Washington's problems are created on the fringes of America's dominant political parties, he says.
On Campaign Promises: “Like most of my colleagues, I promise my constituents a lot of stuff I can never deliver. But what the hell? If it makes them happy hearing it, and they're stupid enough to believe it, shame on them.”
On The Myth Of Spending Restraint: “I contradict myself all the time, but few people notice. One minute I rail against excessive spending and ballooning debt. The next minute I'm demanding more spending on education, health care, unemployment benefits, conservation projects, yadda yadda yadda. I'm for having everything, just like my constituents.”
On Washington Corruption: “How ironic that most of us in Congress run against Congress and the culture of corruption we perpetuate. It's as if we've all lost our fucking sanity and become Don Quixote setting our sights on righting all that's wrong in the political world we've created. Insincerity from the heart. It's just another component of politics as usual.”
On Lobbying Congress: “Business organizations and unions fork over more than $3 billion a year to those who lobby the federal government. Does that tell you something? We're operating a fucking casino.”
On The Aging Congress: “Seniority sucks. Most of the leaders in both parties – House and Senate – are living fossils who don't exactly convey an attractive and vigorous image of Congress. We need to weed our geriatric landscape. Replace longtime careerists with new blood. People who understand the power of collaboration.”
On Media Bias: “Political columnists, TV commentators, and talk show hosts are inherently biased and aspire to effect election outcomes. Pretending otherwise is a thing of the past. You're either red or blue, and there's no in-between. Little wonder voters flock to TV stations, newspapers, and websites offering them the partisan news slant they believe in. … Journalists are a lot like the politicians they interview. The more elite ones are puffed up with self-importance and entitlement.”
On Running For Office: “Election campaigns are a pain in the ass. Unless I win. In which case it's a nice ego boost. Then it's back to shaking the money tree and selling access to me and my legislative staff. … I've also learned it's important to cultivate a concocted image of myself. To make sure the public sees me as I want them to see me. Brand management 101. Shit, I'm marketed no differently than a fancy car or athletic shoes.”
“The GOP have their crazy wingnuts, and we have our loony leftists. Screw them both. What we need are more common-sense lawmakers. Folks who see both sides of an issue. Who are open to accommodating each other's priorities. Today, both sides assume their views are the only logical ones.”
“I'm concerned my party has an activist far-left wing intolerant of center-leftists. Like the Republican Tea Party, these ideologues are much too rigid and extreme in their beliefs. And they're equally unappealing to mainstream Americans.”
He cites education policy as an example: “I'm a strong advocate of improving our public schools. I also see the near-term value of vouchers and charter schools committed to lending a helping hand to disadvantaged kids. Especially inner-city kids.”
“Hell, most of us send our children to private schools and wouldn't be caught dead sending them to public schools in places like DC. How hypocritical's that? It's time to set aside petty politics. Are both parties so fucking stubborn they can't work out a reasonable compromise on this common-sense issue? Our educational system's in the toilet, and all we do is snipe at each other.”
The publisher released a few short samples to the public on Amazon.
“Most of my colleagues are dishonest career politicians who revel in the power and special-interest money that's lavished upon them,” Atkinson recorded his mystery collaborator saying.
“My main job is to keep my job, to get reelected. It takes precedence over everything.”
The book also takes shots at voters as disconnected idiots who let Congress abuse its power through sheer incompetence.
“Voters are incredibly ignorant and know little about our form of government and how it works,” the anonymous writer claims.
“It's far easier than you think to manipulate a nation of naive, self-absorbed sheep who crave instant gratification.”
And the take-away message is one of resigned depression about how Congress sacrifices America's future on the altar of its collective ego.
“We spend money we don't have and blithely mortgage the future with a wink and a nod. Screw the next generation,” the author writes.
“Nobody here gives a rat's ass about the future and who's going to pay for all this stuff we vote for. That's the next generation's problem. It's all about immediate publicity, getting credit now, lookin’ good for the upcoming election.”
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
Years ago I worked for a large Fortune 50 company that shall remain unnamed. They had two offices of Diversity. Yes, two. One month one of these offices held a contest wherein employees were asked to submit a haiku regarding Diversity, 600 words or less. When informed that a Japanese haiku had a very specific form and was not simple prose, their response was that the definition didn’t matter. This really happened. It’s not a fictional story. Clearly, the fact that Japanese might be offended by their literary form, i.e. haiku, being hijacked as a political tool was of no importance to the Office of Diversity. The Japanese culture obviously existed solely in the service to the needs of Diversity, as defined by a gaggle of lard-assed corporate bureaucrats.
A FORMER MEMBER OF THE 9/11 COMMISSION says there was “clear evidence” Saudi Arabia’s government officials helped provide a support network for the hijackers leading up to the attack, The Guardian reports. John H. Lehman also argued that the White House should make public the full, long-classified report on the link. “There was an awful lot of participation by Saudi individuals in supporting the hijackers, and some of those people worked in the Saudi government,” said Lehman, a New York investment banker. The 9/11 commissioners in 2004 issued a report that was seen at the time as absolving the kingdom from involvement. Fifteen of the 19 hijackers lived in Saudi Arabia. Lehman said on Wednesday: “Our report should never have been read as an exoneration of Saudi Arabia.” Others have argued that the full 28 pages should not be released for fear that it would implicate innocent people due to “raw, unvetted” information.
I HOPE BERNIE-SUPPORTING LESSER EVILISTS have their seats adjusted for whiplash. The party of Bernie Sanders is becoming the party of Charles and David Koch for this wild election cycle, at least. Reinvent that, DNC. As the debasing spectacle of the 2016 US presidential election shapes up as a highly personalized, extremely infantilized, and frankly psychotic, hate-filled “race between the two most hated people in America” (Diana Johnstone), you almost have to admire the savage Orwellian perversity of the US business ruled major party duopoly, under whose reign Charles Koch, Henry Kissinger, Robert Kagan, Paul Krugman, Richard Trumka, Tom Hayden, and Bernie Sanders (and numerous unnamed leftists well to Sanders’ and Hayden’s portside) can ultimately dance – or at least shuffle – together around the deeply conservative Hillary Clinton Maypole. Meanwhile, beneath and beyond the seemingly interminable electoral extravaganza, the profit system’s ever-accelerating real-time assault on livable ecology pushes life on Earth ever closer to an apocalyptic cliff. Revolution – the real thing – anyone?
— Paul Street
SARAH TREEM'S When We Were Young and Unafraid
continues this weekend!
Beautifully acted, with smart dialogue and intriguing characters, When We Were Young and Unafraid focuses on four women, each with a different idea of what it means to be female. MTC veteran Catey Simonton plays Agnes, a single mother who runs a bed and breakfast that secretly doubles as a shelter for battered women. Frances Jenks plays her daughter, Penny. Rounding out the talented ensemble are Nicole Traber as a young woman seeking shelter; Savannah Green as a radical feminist traveler; and Dan Mello as a songwriter from San Francisco. When We Were Young and Unafraid plays tonight, tomorrow and Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 2pm at the Mendocino Theatre Company on Little Lake Rd. in Mendocino. Tickets are available at the box office, 937-4477, or online at mendocinotheatre.org.
TRUMP SWITCHEROO - Now Hitting Up Republican Party and Wall Street for Money
"…after months of railing against Wall Street executives and special interests, [Trump] recently turned to a former Goldman Sachs executive, Steven Mnuchin, to corral large checks for his campaign.”
WRITERS CONFERENCE LAUNCH PARTY & OPEN MIC
The community is invited to attend the all-ages Open Mic and Noyo River Review launch party, Saturday, May 21, 3:30 – 5 p.m. upstairs at the historic Odd Fellows Hall in Mendocino. Featured readers from around Northern California will perform new writing from the latest edition of the Noyo River Review. All ages are welcome to share the Open Mic. Refreshments will be served. Entrance to the Open Mic and all exhibits is free.
This Open Mic event is part of FlockWorks’ 4th annual exhibition “The Art of Letter, Word & Book” showcasing calligraphy, book arts, and interactive installations. Exhibits are open daily through May 30 at Odd Fellows Hall, corner of Ukiah and Kasten in Mendocino. The 27th annual Mendocino Coast Writers Conference will take place August 4-6 and encourages emerging and established writers to develop their craft in the company of visiting authors, editors, and agents. New this year is a one-day Publishing Boot Camp on August 7. Conference registration details: www.mcwc.org.
ASSEMBLYMEMBER EGGMAN, SENATOR WORK TO REQUEST AUDIT OF DELTA TUNNELS
by Dan Bacher
As the economic, scientific and financial justifications for Governor Jerry Brown’s Delta Tunnels Plan continue to collapse, two Delta legislators on Monday, May 9 put yet another potential hurdle in the project’s path.
Assemblymember Susan Talamantes Eggman and Senator Lois Wolk said they will request a state audit of the California Water Fix, “the new name for a very old project to divert water from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta,” according to a joint statement from the two legislators.
The two giant tunnels under the Delta would divert Sacramento River water to be used by corporate agribusiness interests on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley, Southern California water agencies, and oil companies conducting fracking and extreme oil extraction methods in Kern County.
“There are still too many unanswered questions about how the Twin Tunnels are to be funded and who is going to pay for them,” said Eggman, D-Stockton. “With a federal investigation pending into whether billions of dollars meant for other purposes have already been misused, it is time for us to demand a higher level of scrutiny and public accountability for this project.”
“At a projected cost of $15 billion and climbing, California policy makers should be concerned about the source and accountability for funding for the Delta tunnels project. Currently the proposed Delta tunnels project has no financing plan for its construction, operation or maintenance,” said Wolk, D-Davis, who represents four of the five counties in the Delta.
“Proponents of the project claim that the beneficiary will pay, yet the ability and willingness of the contractors to pay is in serious question,” said Wolk. “Hundreds of millions of dollars have already been spent to conduct preliminary environmental review and engineering studies. Any further investment should be made with the utmost transparency to ensure that taxpayers are not paying the bill.”
Their announcement followed the release of a detailed Public Records Act request Monday by Restore the Delta (RTD). Restore the Delta also requested an audit of the project, noting a long list of concerns about public spending on the project and its legality, Wolk noted.
Citing a lack of state or federal legislative authorization, RTD filed the request under the California Public Records Act to a half dozen public agencies, including the California Department of Water Resources (DWR), seeking details about the funding plan for the proposed Delta Tunnels.
The letter targeted officials at Zone 7 Water Agency, Westlands Water District, Metropolitan Water District, Kern County Water Agency, and the Santa Clara Valley Water District, in addition to DWR.
The letter asks the agencies to clarify how “…the continued planning and design of the proposed project is funded by each major water contractor who may benefit from its construction, operation and maintenance, and who provide security for state and federal debt issuance.”
The group also seeks assurance that “best practices consistent and compliant with the taxation principles of the California Constitution as amended by Propositions 218 and 26” are being followed.
In addition, RTD seeks information regarding how the US Bureau of Reclamation came to finance Delta Tunnels planning for the Westlands Water District.
The letter concludes that Restore the Delta will ask the State Auditor and Joint Legislative Audit Committee to investigate the funding plan for the Delta Tunnels proposal.
“No finance plan has been made public,” said Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, executive director of Restore the Delta. “Recent Federal investigations have led many urban residents to suspect that they will be forced to subsidize (with higher water rates and property taxes) industrial agriculture on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley, growing crops for export.”
“The agencies promoting the project have been very secretive about how interim project costs have been paid to date and how the project will be paid for in the future. The original concept was a project funded by the beneficiaries, which is important since 70 percent of the water will go to big industrial growers on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley,” she concluded.
A bill prohibiting the building of Governor Jerry Brown's Delta Tunnels unless the project is approved by California voters is currently making its way through the legislature. Assembly Bill 1713, authored by Assemblymember Eggman, passed out of the Assembly Committee on Water, Parks, and Wildlife on April 19 by a vote of 8 to 4. (www.indybay.org/...)
Leaders of a wide array of fishing groups, conservation organizations, Indian Tribes and environmental justice groups strongly oppose the Delta Tunnels. The Tunnels would hasten the extinction of Central Valley winter-run Chinook salmon, Delta and longfin smelt, green sturgeon and other fish species, as well as imperiling the salmon, steelhead, green sturgeon and Pacific lamprey populations on the Trinity and Klamath rivers.
MUSIC FESTIVAL VOLUNTEER SIGN UP DAY May 21, 12:30
We’re gearing up for the Mendocino Music Festival 2016 Season. Sign-Up Day for volunteers is Saturday, May 21, 12:30-3 at the Community Center of Mendocino, corner of School and Pine Streets in Mendocino. There are many volunteer opportunities. On May 21 you’ll be able to sign up to volunteer at concerts (in the concert or concession tents) and in Preston Hall, as well as for some daytime tasks (some during, and some before the Festival), and also for some special events. It is very helpful and time saving if before the 21st you go to our website www.mendocinomusic.org scroll down under the Support MMF heading to “Volunteer” and register as a volunteer. You will also see a guide sheet listed there that you can mark with your volunteer requests and bring to sign-up day. If you cannot attend sign-up day, you can have a friend sign up for you. Be sure that besides the four concert dates and tasks you prefer, your friend has all your contact information (name, address, email address and phone number). If unable to be there, or to have a friend sign you up, you can contact me, Arlene Reiss at firstname.lastname@example.org. Starting May 24th, you’ll be able to sign up online for unfilled slots. With your help, which we very much appreciate, we look forward to presenting another (our 30th) fabulous Festival. Thank you, Arlene (Volunteer Coordinator)
NOMINATING HILLARY MEANS TRUMP IS THE NEXT PRESIDENT
Dear Congressman Jared Huffman:
I just wrote to Vice President Joe Biden at his White House email address and copied him on this link (below) from Sen. Lincoln Chafee back in 2015. Hillary Clinton is not Presidential material. She has serious character deficits. I asked Joe to declare his interest in running with Bernie Sanders as Bernie's candidate for Vice President before the FBI indicts Clinton.
We must unite against the GOP, if we are to win in November.