Mendocino County Today: Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017

by AVA News Service, November 5, 2017

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PETS 'O THE WEEK

Jetson was a guest at the shelter when the fires occured. We were able to transfer dogs and cats to many of our rescue partners. Jetson went to Santa Cruz, but he came back to the shelter because he's shy and does not present well in his kennel. But, once he gets to know you, he's very friendly and affectionate. Jetson participated in the shelter's multi-dog play group, and the group's handlers said he was social and mellow. Jetson plays ball and he likes water and the kiddie pool. He needs a quiet home without a lot of people traffic. Jetson will make a great companion to someone looking for a best friend that lives a quiet lifestyle.

Meet Brother, our cat of the week. He's a 5 month old, neutered male. His littermate, Amber, was adopted and now here is here all by himself! Brother is a feline cuddle bug who is friendly and playful and a typical happy kitten. Brother is a black tabby and white kitten.

The Ukiah Animal Shelter is located at 298 Plant Road in Ukiah; adoption hours are Tuesday - Saturday 10 am to 4:30 pm and Wednesday till 6:30 pm. To view photos and bios of our adoptable dogs and cats, please us visit online at www.mendoanimalshelter.com or visit the shelter. Join us the 2nd Saturday of every month for our "Empty the Shelter" pack walk and help us get every dog out for some exercise! For more information about adoptions please call 707-467-6453.

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STRANGERS ON A TRAIN

by Eleanor Cooney

We first spotted him when we came up the stairs to the second deck. He was hard to miss. We were still in the station in L.A. on a gorgeous sunny morning, all-aboarding the Coast Starlight which runs almost 1200 miles north to Seattle. Mitch and I would be getting off that evening in Oakland.

It's a tough little staircase for anyone not completely able-bodied. Narrow and steep, it takes two right turns, and if you're carrying anything at all, it's clumsy and awkward. At the top, we saw a tall young man, maybe twenty or so and at least 500 pounds, thick glasses with an elastic strap holding them onto his head, gigantic pale legs bulging out of Bermuda shorts, who'd just climbed that staircase and plopped down in the first space he came to. He was so big he took up both seats. His face was red and glistening and his chest heaved with exertion, mouth hanging open to get more air. He had a goggle-eyed look of excitement, panic, wariness, fascination and bewilderment, and he hugged a tiny portable television close with both arms. Mentally deficient, I registered as we passed by. Traveling alone, sternly warned by whoever put him on the train: Watch out. Don't let them steal your television.

The Coast Starlight route is mostly a beautiful ride, worthy of the name. You're out of the city amazingly soon and wending up switchbacks into the hills north of L.A. The part of the ride that's actually on the coast has an extra dimension of thrill to it because erosion has put the edge so close to the tracks in places that it gives you the illusion that there's no ground under the train at all. Along about Ventura, you start seeing oil derricks way out there on the blue sea, far enough away so that you could, indeed, as some pro-coastal-oil-drilling politician once remarked, hold up a dime and block it from your vision.

Lunchtime rolled around. First call, said the steward over the P.A. system. Let's go, we said, before the stampede. No need for the book and dark glasses when you're part of a pair.

The dining car was mostly empty, and the steward, still just setting up his game board, making his first strategic placements, put us by ourselves at the far end of the car, on the ocean side. We sat with our backs to the wall like Wild Bill in the Deadwood Saloon. Someone could still surprise us from the door closest to us, but we had a clear view down the length of the car in the other direction.

The tables populated gradually. Moms, Dads, teens, kids, sportily-dressed senior citizens. Handshakes, introductions, conversation. Where you folks headed to? Oh, that's a real pretty area. Our son-in-law is stationed up there. That was some game last night. Our daughter just had a baby girl. The train was not particularly crowded that day, so there were still a few spaces left, including at our table, when a looming figure carrying a television filled the door at the other end of the car.

It wasn't quite like the saloon doors swinging open and the piano stopping and everyone shutting up—but almost. Forks and coffee cups paused. Eyes flicked and averted. The steward looked around, gazed at us for a fraction of a second longer than he looked at other diners. With just a hint of malicious glee that I may very well have been imagining, he raised his hand, signaled, and pointed.

Thighs like tree trunks rubbed together, moving down the narrow aisle between the tables, television riding high, tucked under an arm. Waiters nimbly dodged, children stared and people pulled elbows and feet clear as he walked the entire length of the car. He heaved and squeezed into the seat opposite us, meant to hold two people, and occupied it entirely. He put the television on the table. Sweating and adenoidally mouth-breathing, he looked at us. "Hello," he said in a high, formal voice. "Hello," I said, and picked up my menu. A man at a nearby table gave us a pitying smirk.

Mitch was not amused. Without a word, before I could stop him or say anything, he got up and stalked down the aisle toward the steward. To lodge an objection, I was sure. But I, the vastly more experienced laissez-faire philosophical dining-car veteran, felt the thrill of an impending Bokononist adventure (see Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut). I watched my tablemate over the top of my menu. He looked out the window with the focused intensity of a bird dog.

Then he sucked in his breath like a little girl who's just seen Tinker Bell, and let it out in a sharp soprano coo of delight. I looked out the window. There was an oil derrick. And another, and another. For each derrick, he gasped and cooed. People were turning clear around in their seats to gape at him.

Behind my menu, I was convulsed with happiness. This was perfect serendipity. It could not possibly, under any circumstances, get any better than this, never, ever. Mitch came back down the aisle, expression grim, evidently told by the steward to like it or lump it, until he took in the scene: my face, our tablemate and the people around us, assessed it in a nanosecond, and instantly shifted gears. He sat down, pointedly met the looks of some of the other diners, and smiled at the young man.

"I'm Mitch," he said. "And this is Ellie. What's your name?"

"Robert," he said in his high little voice, and extended a pudgy hand across the table. If Mitch hesitated, I didn't see it, though I knew he was thinking about where that hand might recently have been. But he was completely on board now, and shook Robert's hand as if it were perfumed, manicured, lace-cuffed and belonged to the Belgian ambassador. I smirked back at the pitying man at the other table. I'd rather sit with Robert, who's about a thousand times more interesting than you, than listen to you blather about your grandkids any old day.

I know a man with an IQ in the upper register who says that when he was very young he believed he was retarded. I know another man with a PhD in organic chemistry, who, if you saw him on the street, you would assume was out for the day from the sheltered workshop. He has a big lopsided head, a misshapen body and peculiar uncontrollable nervous tics of the face and hands. What was Robert? After ten minutes with him, I no longer presumed to classify him, except to say that he was some sort of innocent. In terms of Robert, though, the usual definitions of that word don't quite satisfy me: an unsophisticated person, a simpleton, an idiot, someone unacquainted with and incapable of sin. Well, maybe that last part. Innocence seems to me to be a comparative state, and compared to everyone else in that dining car, right down to (and perhaps especially) the six-year-olds, he was utterly unacquainted with and incapable of guile. He was truly a stranger in a strange land.

A few years before, Mitch had worked hard and effectively in the movement to stop Big Oil from drilling off the northern California coast. The Santa Barbara coast, where the train was now lumbering along, had been conquered years before, and the ubiquitous derricks like little lunar settlements out there on the water were evidence of their victory. When you run barefoot through the surf on those beaches, your feet sometimes get black and oily.

But Robert loved oil and everything about it. He didn't love it the way the CEO of Exxon loves it. He loved it purely for its fascinating self: that it was ancient, that it had formed from the remains of plants and animals without number that had lived eons ago, that it lay in vast black oceans under the earth, and he loved its many uses and the elaborate, ingenious systems and machinery invented and built by humans to get at it.

Mitch asked him questions while some of our immediate table-neighbors eavesdropped: What are the names of the big oil companies? What are some examples of things made from oil besides fuel and lubricants? Happy and excited, Robert rattled off the names of a dozen giant corporations. He pointed to the plastic frames of his glasses, the vinyl pen protector in his pocket, the pens, the shell of his television, the cups we were drinking from. He knew that oil spills and automobile emissions were not good and that people did bad things because of oil, but he couldn't help himself — he was in love, and love is blind.

He told us where he was going: to his uncle's ranch in Montana. No, he hadn't been there before. His mother was sending him. His mother and her new boyfriend.

His mother and her new boyfriend. It wasn't hard to picture:

Christ, Faye. Get rid of him. He creeps me out.

But, Andy! Montana! It's so far away!

Baby, he'll do fine. Make a man out of him. Maybe lose some blubber.

When we finished lunch, we stood. We both shook hands with Robert, making sure everyone nearby saw and heard us wish him a good trip and say it was nice to meet him. And looking neither left nor right, we made our triumphant procession down the dining car.

It was a long, long ride to where Robert was going — all the way up the rest of California, through Oregon and half of Washington to Seattle, where he'd get off the Coast Starlight and get on the Empire Builder for 800 more miles of Washington, Idaho and Montana. In the seats all the way. With his ticket (one-way?), his wallet attached to his belt by a retractable cord, a letter from his mother in his shirt pocket, all 500 underslept, rumpled, dazed, unwashed pounds of him getting off the train in the middle of Montana with his television, to be met by… some lean young cowpoke in a Jeep, who'd drive him miles and miles out to the ranch. Where he'd have to sleep in the bunkhouse with more young cowpokes. He'd cry at night. His uncle would force him to try to learn how to rope and ride. And then things would go all Lord Of The Flies: his glasses broken, his television stolen, a lot of tequila around a bonfire, Robert lassoed, bawling, trussed up on the ground and branded while red drunken faces yipped, yowled and ki-yied…

Or maybe his uncle was kind and wise, and he had a swell time in the fresh air under the big sky and lost a couple of hundred pounds.

I think about him a lot, and wonder if he could possibly still be alive.

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VETERANS DAY 2017

Dear Friends,

Next Saturday, 11th November, 2017, at 10.30am prompt, the American Legion’s Kirk Wilder and myself will be presenting a special Veterans Day service alongside the Remembrance Wall at the Evergreen Cemetery on Anderson Valley Way just north of Boonville.

I have been involved with such an event for much of my adult life, both in the UK and San Francisco, and initiated the local event in the Valley eight years ago, before taking a break for a couple of years ago as others organized the ceremony. A month or so ago, Kirk approached me about working on this again and we have done so together and will hopefully present a meaningful Remembrance Day gathering next weekend.

Valley folks like yourselves are encouraged to attend. It should be emphasized that this is not an overtly political or religious event. It is simply an opportunity for the community of Anderson Valley to show its support and gratitude for both the men and women who have given their lives or were wounded in the service of their country, and also those who have served or continue to serve, so that we may have the freedoms and liberties that we enjoy today… We hope to see you there.

Cheers,

Steve Sparks

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NEW DATA SHOW SOCO FIRE DAMAGE BY COMMUNITY

Countywide, the wildfires destroyed 6,600 structures, including 5,130 homes, according to Cal Fire.

pressdemocrat.com/news/7597510-181/new-data-show-sonoma-county

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COURTHOUSE ROTATES THE TIRES

by Bruce McEwen

The County Courthouse is in a state of change, a bustling mass of lawyers moving in many different directions. The seething flux and flow includes several lawyers who have left the Office of the Public Defender and the District Attorney's Office, the most notable among them being the elevation of Assistant Public Defender Carly Dolan to a judgeship by appointment of Governor Jerry Brown.

Other lawyers who have recently left Linda Thompson’s for-the-defense stables include Jonathan Opet, Lindsay Peak, Jay Pitchford, Vishad Dewan, Joseph Laveroni. None of them said goodbye to me — there’s always been a stand-offish policy in effect at the Public Defender’s Office as pertains to newspaper reporters. It’s not just the AVA. My former colleague Tiffany Revelle at the Ukiah Daily Journal often complained at how she could never get any comment from those taciturn advocates for the indigent either.

Public Defender Linda Thompson’s motto is “The noblest motive is the public good.” Curiously, her website is so sparse that it appears the best way to do the public good is to keep the public completely and utterly in the dark as to how the Public Defender goes about its noble errand.

The list of practicing attorneys hasn’t been updated at the Public Defender’s website, so the only name I know among the new hires is Chelsea Thornton who was genial enough to introduce herself to me. An honor, I’m sure. But I fear she risks the wrath of her boss for doing so.

By contrast, all the lawyers leaving the DA’s Office tendered their kind farewells to your trusty Courthouse correspondent. I was even treated to a huge slab of cake from the going-away party. The departures include Joshua Rosenfeld (to Humboldt County, where his wife works for Department of Justice, Eureka), Caitlin Keene (she’ll be joining former Assistant DA Paul Sequeira in Solano County), Barry Shapiro (Stanislaus County), Brian Morimune (to Sonoma County), and two or three others I didn’t really know since they were low-ranking ensigns and limited to the misdemeanor court, leaving four vacant posts on the DA’s duty roster.

However, DA David Eyster is such an engaged administrator that he capably fields any cases not covered due to staff shortages. So much so that I had one of the new public defender deputies tell me how odd it was to find herself facing the DA himself in a misdemeanor matter recently. Again, this Deputy Public Defender is an exception to the rule at the Public Defender’s Office and I hope Ms. Thompson won’t retaliate against her for talking to me.

The new prosecutors include: Thomas Geddes (Deputy DA II), Joe Guzman (Deputy DA II), Jamie Pearl (Deputy DA I), Melissa Weems (Deputy DA I).

Changes include the bailiffs. Deputy Arthur Barclay had his house burned down in the recent wildfire storms and has been gone from Judge Ann Moorman’s court. Sergeant Richard Wagner appeared with a ghostly impression on his sleeves where his stripes had been, and I couldn’t help asking if he got busted down to private for some indiscretion. But it turned out he’d retired and came back on a part-time basis — “They don’t let you keep the rank,” he said.

The Judges themselves are gearing up for another department rotation at the first of the year, as they do every year, to give all their honors a well-rounded experience. The consequence of the anticipated changes must be foreseen and dealt with beforehand, in that criminal defendants have a right to be sentenced by the same judge who took their plea, and so, in Department B, Judge Moorman’s court, for instance, proceedings have sometimes had to wait for Judge Cindee Mayfield to come down and take a plea, since it is anticipated that she will be on the Department B criminal bench when the sentencing takes place after the first of the year — Mayfield is being reassigned from her current duties in family court.

Freshly-minted Superior Court Judge Carly Dolan will have to hand off her current high-profile client, Steven Patrick Ryan, the Ukiah man who shot and killed a young black man last year for dumpster diving in front of Ryan’s property*. This will undoubtedly delay Ryan's trial. And, since Deputy DA Caitlin Keene was Ryan's prosecutor, replacement lawyers for both sides will be needed. DA Eyster himself took over the case of Jeffrey Settler murdered at his Laytonville pot garden by his hired help trimmers. Josh Rosenfeld had been prosecuting that case, which started with seven co-defendants, and still has four awaiting trial.

Judge Dolan will have to hand off another murder case as well, that of Jewel Dyer, accused of murdering his father with a baseball bat in Laytonville last year*. Mr. Dyer was all set to enter a plea two weeks ago, but at the last minute changed his mind, and decided to go through with the trial. In fact, Deputy DA Scott McMenomey and Ms. Dolan were supposed to set a trial date this coming week; but now that will all go out the proverbial window, and another year will flow under the bridge before a new lawyer is ready — even if Linda Thompson herself takes on the case.

Ms. Thompson, by the way, waited until the last minute, as it were, to announce a conflict of interest in another baseball bat murder, the killing of Timothy Sweeting by Joshua Ruoff*. After the Public Defender’s conflict of interest declaration on the eve of trial, the case was handed off to the Office of the Alternate Public Defender, in particular Jan Cole-Wilson who joined that office when she returned to work this summer after a long illness.

Other complications are manifesting themselves daily at the Courthouse, and we’ll try to keep the readership informed as best we can, given the reticence of the judges and lawyers at the Public Defender’s Office — and here we should make it plain that the DA’s Office is always exceptionally forthcoming and helpful. The difference in the two offices is that Eyster is a workhorse, and a combative one at that. Public Defender Thompson isn't.

* (Case backgrounds)

Dyer Case: On 3-28-2016 around 03:30 AM the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to a reported altercation between a father and son that resulted in the death of Sanford Sternick. Sternick was 58 years of age. MCSO Deputies responded to an area south of Laytonville where they located and confirmed the death of Sternick from what appeared to be blunt force trauma. The decedent’s son, Jewel Dyer, 25 years of age, was detained at the scene. … A witness indicated Dyer claimed there was an argument in the early morning hours between he and his father. That argument lead to a physical altercation, which resulted in the father suffering blunt force trauma about the head. A baseball bat, located at the crime scene, was believed to have been used during the altercation. Dyer was transported and booked into the County Jail on murder charges.

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Ruoff Case: On 05-18-2016 at approximately 7:08 PM, Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputies were called regarding a possible physical assault that occurred the previous day at a residence located in the 23500 block of Road 337D (Also known as Charlie Hurt Highway] in Covelo. Upon arrival, Deputies found evidence of a physical assault and contacted potential witnesses. During this initial investigation, Deputies learned Joshua Richard Ruoff had been witnessed assaulting Timothy William Sweeting with a blunt object on 05-17-2016. Several days later Sheriff’s investigators determined that Ruoff had murdered Sweeting and disposed of his body.

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Ryan Case: On 11-21-2016 around 11:20 hours the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Dispatch received several calls of “shooting in the area” and one call from a male who identified himself as Steven Ryan. Ryan advised that he’d just shot a person near his residence in self defense. Responding Officers found a 20 year old male victim named De’Shaun Davis deceased in the driveway from what appeared to be one or more gunshot wounds. … Ryan and the victim got into in a verbal argument over a possible trespass situation after the victim was seen rummaging through a waste disposal bin on the property. Both parties may have approached each other where numerous shots were fired by Ryan with the victim being struck by one or more rounds from a large caliber handgun. Ryan, who had initially been one of the callers to report the incident, claimed the shooting was in self defense. The investigation led Detectives to believe the shooting may not have met the criteria of a “justified or self defense” shooting. Ryan was arrested on murder charges.

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JUDGE DOLAN

by Bruce McEwen

Notwithstanding those lawyers who coveted the appointment for themselves, the elevation of Assistant Public Defender Carly Dolan to Superior Court Judge should send a peal of approbation resonating through the local defense bar – Yeah! A judge so young and cool she evas Shannon Cox, the other candidate for the judge job — as Ms. Cox herself would be quick to admit, I think, since both lawyers are about equal in many things, such as age, education, experience in the profession, connection to the community, family matters (they both married Jasons, same number of kids), and general competency.

Judge Dolan was preparing for trial in two homicide cases when the appointment came, and one of them at least, was what’s called a high-profile murder, the case of Steven Patrick Ryan accused of shooting down a black Mendocino College football player in cold blood for dumpster diving after recyclables in Ryan’s front yard. The other homicide defendant she was defending is Jewel Dyer, accused of killing his father with a baseball bat in Laytonville last year.

I remember Ms. Dolan seated in the grandstands in Boonville watching the sheep dog trials a few years ago, and her husband and two kids exclaiming with delight as the dogs herded the sheep through the obstacles – I had no idea her husband had died, but I knew she’d taken emergency leave: Such is the Politburo secrecy with which Linda Thompson runs the Office of the Public Defender.

Will Carly Dolan be too lenient as a judge?

This is the fear of Law Enforcement any time a public defender – or any defense lawyer, for that matter — gets a black robe. But as was the case with the late Judge Ron Brown (also appointed from the Public Defender’s Office), and also with Judge Ann Moorman and, more recently, Judge Keith Faulder, these fears of a judge coming in and cutting all the criminals loose did not occur. Their honors Faulder and Moorman have certainly allayed such cop worries, and, well, as far as that goes, Judge Brown was more of a “hanging judge” than even Judge Richard Henderson, the one Dolan will be replacing.

In point of fact, we should note that Ms. Cox, having married a cop who is now an investigator at the Lake County DA’s Office (Jason Cox), may have been passed over for the appointment on the basis that she was too heavily influenced by the prosecutorial leanings in her life, above and beyond her career as a Deputy DA, and therefore perhaps the governor felt she might lean too far to the State’s side in any given case.

Now, for the important question: Will the shy defense advocate, Ms. Dolan, be as entertaining as the other judges? Certainly, she has her work cut out for her when it comes to competing with Judge Faulder, whose courtroom is as entertaining as SNL – and Judge Behnke, of course, a jurist of such nimble wit that even Faulder dares not joust with him – and you should have seen Judge Moorman conducting traffic court last week! By God, it was as good as The Master himself, Judge Leonard LaCasse, has ever done. Judge Moorman actually had people in the gallery applauding, as she told speeders and stop sign-runners, “Good heavens, no! Don’t ever give the government more than you absolutely have to! I’ll release the hold on your license and reduce the $300 late fee to $100, but there’s nothing I can do about the money you’ve already over-paid them.”

So Judge Dolan has her work cut out for her in the entertainment department. But consider this: She used to be called Olive Oyl (from the Popeye the Sailor cartoon), by her clients at the jail, and she confided to me that she even dressed as Olive Oyl for Halloween once or twice, so she has the best kind sense of humor. And she has a cartoon tattooed on her ankle.

Congratulations, Judge Dolan.

* * *

ED NOTE

HARV READING, applying his strict vigilance for left deviationism, writes:

“Dress codes are just another way of brainwashing kids into mindless obedience, and unquestioning respect for patriarchal authority, with the goal of ensuring that the kids become good little unquestioning, low-wage employees. Such monstrosities as dress codes, the mythology that is taught as history, and the other subjects taught to some standardized test written by middle class white people, society ensures that independent thought is stifled at an early age. On the bright side, it is a temporary situation, and will end soon, with the extinction of the species. The kids have the wisdom to see that, despite all the brainwashing."

WHILE we await extinction, and assuming most of us still think the function of the schools is to instill minimal facility with one's native tongue and the ability to perform a few basic math functions, school uniforms would spare the principal a lot of time haggling with hormonal teens over "appropriate" dress — sexually provocative dress by girls, and gang colors, sags, etc. by boys, all of which are major classroom distractions. And dress codes save parents a lot of money they don't have to spend caving in to their children's fashion demands.

HIGH SCHOOL HISTORY, as it's taught in Mendo anyway, seems to be a kind of purplish jumble heavy on ol' Whitey's crimes, although I spotted a kid writing (copying) a paper on the Wobblies not long ago. I asked her who the Wobblies were. She said she could care less, that she had to do it to pass the class. The grim fact is, out of any public high school graduating crop, most of the grads will be lucky to land a job that will get them a thirty-year, flex mortgage.

HOWEVER, and as a Doomer, I think we're in a countdown to some serious upset, a violent actualization of the pervasive bad feeling out there, not to mention an inevitable collapse of the giant grift called the financial system. Throw this in with accelerating natural disasters and the Big Picture grows darker and darker.

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MSP PLAYOFF NOTES...

33% OF MENDO SOCCER PLAYERS 'TAKE KNEE' DURING ANTHEM

MSP made the 153-mile, three-hour (one-way) journey Wednesday to watch the Mendocino Cardinal boys soccer team take on defending Division 2 champ Drew High School in the opening round of the 2 playoffs played at "historic" Kezar Stadium in San Francisco.

And we observed what only a few other coast soccer fans did - five of the Mendocino players "took a knee" during the playing of the National Anthem.

It didn't look like anything pre-planned, they just "did it." Which, of course, we found kind of ironic since the Drew High School team was made up of a majority of minorities and they STOOD during the anthem.

That's not to say they were the ONLY team to "take a knee" during the high school playoffs.

MSP talked to Timberwolf game announcer Tony Anderson who informed us the entire Gateway High School team (including coaching staff) "took a knee" Wednesday night during that soccer playoff game and writer Brian Sumpter of the Lake County Record-Bee reported, "During a Tuesday night volleyball playoff match between Clear Lake High School of Lakeport and visiting College Prep of Oakland, all of the College Prep players along with members of the coaching staff took a knee during the playing of the national anthem, prompting a loud chorus of boos from the crowd, most of them Clear Lake fans."

MSP emailed Mendocino Superintendent Jason Morse asking,

Is there any MUSD policy regarding Mendocino student-athletes and the National Anthem? Should there be? Will there be?

The North Coast Section has no policy - leaving it up to the individual schools to set policy regarding this matter.

Would the board of trustees have to make a policy - or even discuss one? I'd like to suggest this be made an agenda item, if possible, at the next meeting.

One thing about Superintendent Morse, he ALWAYS promptly replies to MSP inquiries. And we'd like to thank him for that.

Superintendent Morse replied:

The athletics program at Mendocino High School values sportsmanship, citizenship, and scholarship. We believe in the double-goal coaching philosophy: striving for winning and teaching life lessons. Like the classroom, the playing field is a place for students to put forth effort, make mistakes, and most importantly, learn.

We support our students and athletes who may feel passionately about a cause. In athletics, team comes before self, and it is our hope that any statement made has been discussed and understood by athletes and coaches. This is not a policy, but an ethic of responsibility and respect.

When a student-athlete does choose to act from their heart in a non-threatening manner to make their own statement, it is not appropriate to shame them; we treat it as an opportunity for discussion, learning, and growth, for everyone.

Regarding your other questions about policy – we do not, and nor should we, have a policy. There is clear legal precedent in this country regarding this issue.

Thanks for traveling all of those miles to cover the game for our players, families, and community – we appreciate your support!

Record-Bee writer Brian Sumpter contacted the North Coast Section about the question of "standing or kneeling" during the national Anthem, This is what he found out:

"...Neither the North Coast Section (NCS) or the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) requires high school athletes to stand during the playing of the national anthem.

The CIF, the governing body for high school sports in the state, is made up of 10 sections of which the NCS is one. The NCS runs from the Oregon border down to the southern Bay Area and includes more than 1,500 public and private schools, including all five Lake County high schools.

While ongoing protests during the playing of the anthem in the NFL and to a lesser degree in the other major sports have dominated the pro sports scene in recent months and continue to be a hot topic on social media websites, Tuesday’s Halloween protest on the Clear Lake High School gym floor brought a national controversy close to home for many Lake County residents.

'Neither the CIF or NCS have bylaws regarding demonstrations,' NCS Commissioner of Athletes Gil Lemmon told the Record-Bee on Wednesday afternoon. 'That’s up to the individual athletes, athletics directors, coaches and school staff. It’s up to each school to decide (policy).'

Added Lemmon, 'We would hope that there would be some meaningful discussion going on at the schools, that they would use it as an opportunity to talk about what’s going on in society.'

In regard to the playing of the national anthem at high school sporting events, Lemmon said the policy of the NCS and CIF is to leave it up to the individual, player and coach, whether to stand, sit or kneel.

'There is a lot of turmoil in our society right now,' Lemmon said.

Currently there are no plans, either at the section or state level, to visit the issue in the near future, according to Lemmon.

'None that I’m aware of,' he said. 'It’s not even something to be concerned with or something I’m worried about at this point'.”

(MendocinoSportsPlus)

* * *

LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Much as that damn cat Skrag annoys me, I don’t begrudge him that recycled deck chair outside the office. He prefers the outside on these cold nights while I get to be indoors. So he can have it.”

* * *

SUBSTANCE ABUSE SUPPORT GROUP

Anderson Valley Health Center

This group will serve as a space for participants to address substance use issues and examine core issues that drive substance abuse. The group will utilize a client-centered, collaborative approach and participants will be encouraged to identify individual goals. For example, one participant may have a goal to reduce use of one substance, while another participant may have a goal to maintain a longstanding abstinence from multiple substances. Additionally, the group welcomes those entering into or maintaining a medication assisted treatment (MAT) for substance abuse. In the group format, participants will have the opportunity to experience a sense of community, develop their communication skills, and give and receive feedback from others. Participants will receive support and a safe space to explore their relationship to substances and will be taught skills to assist in reducing and managing substance use while working toward their individual goals.

Wednesdays from 5:30 - 6:45 PM, beginning November 29th

The group will be limited in size and we ask all participants to make a commitment to attending the group weekly for a three month module

To join the group or for more information, please contact Stephanie Shreve at 707-895-3477 ext. 240 or sshreve@avhc.org

* * *

FIRE SURVIVORS SAY SONOMA COUNTY’S ALERT SYSTEM FAILED THEM

pressdemocrat.com/news/7585485-181/fire-survivors-say-sonoma-countys

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2017

Anderson, Armstrong, Arnold

EDWARD ANDERSON, Redwood Valley. DUI, no license.

ANDREW ARMSTRONG, Ukiah. DUI-drugs causing bodily injury.

SHANNON ARNOLD, Goleta/Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, resisting, probation revocation.

Beltran, Delbello, Douglas

MIGUEL BELTRAN, Potter Valley. DUI, misdemeanor hit&run, no license, illegal entry.

JONATHON DELBELLO, Willits. DUI, probation revocation.

LAURA DOUGLAS, DUI, controlled substance.

Gonzales-Lopez, Jourdain, Martinez

JORGE GONZALES-LOPEZ, DUI.

JOSEPH JOURDAIN, Fort Bragg. DUI, controlled substance, smoking-injecting device.

GUSTAVO MARTINEZ, DUI.

Parker, Pate, Pearson

MICHAEL PARKER, Ukiah. Shoplifting, disobeying court order, probation revocation.

MICHAEL PATE, Tahoe Vista/Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

ADAM PEARSON, Ukiah. Paraphernalia, resisting, parole violation.

* * *

ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY

As for wishing both parties would fall off a cliff, I’m right there with you. A few buddies of mine in CA, where it doesn’t matter much anyway, have switched their voter registration to Independent from Republican. I know plenty of former Democrats who no longer donate to or engage in any defense of that party’s policies.

And we’re all lowly Millennials, too.

In the end it will take revolution to remove the oligarchy. But I have no clue as to what comes next; there is nothing unifying the people/s of modern America. If the existing power structure is removed you will see a civil war that makes the ‘ethnic cleansing’ of the Balkans in the 1990’s look like a picnic. Every tribe has a score to settle, and with half a billion firearms floating around the US, you can bet that a lot of those scores will be settled very violently.

I’ve always been surprised at the high level of discourse the Founding generation engaged in prior, during, and after the American Revolution. Even the written thought contemporary with the French and Russian revolutions is lightyears ahead of what passes for discussion in this country. Remove the power structure, and those looking for order will listen to anyone who can put together a passably cogent narrative.

Needless to say, if that happens, I’m getting the hell out of here; there is nothing worth defending here (save family).

* * *

SPEAKING OF EMPIRE

The average age of the world's greatest civilizations from the beginning of history has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence: From bondage to spiritual faith; From spiritual faith to great courage; From courage to liberty; From liberty to abundance; From abundance to selfishness; From selfishness to complacency; From complacency to apathy; From apathy to fear; from fear to dependence; From dependence back into bondage.

— Tytler Cycle (Alexander Tytler, a Scottish historian who lived at the same time as the American Founding Fathers); uncertain provenance, could be early 20th Century.

* * *

ANITA HILL ON WEINSTEIN, TRUMP, AND A WATERSHED MOMENT FOR SEXUAL-HARASSMENT ACCUSATIONS

by Jane Mayer

During the 2016 Presidential campaign, eleven women accused Donald Trump of making unwanted sexual advances toward them. Following a well-worn playbook used by other accused sexual harassers, Trump dismissed the women as “horrible, horrible liars” and their allegations as “pure fiction.” The women¹s voices swayed very few voters, it would seem. Even after the “Access Hollywood” tape surfaced, allowing voters to hear Trump boasting about “grabbing” women “by the pussy,” he was elected President. Among those who put his candidacy over the top (at least in the Electoral College) were fifty-three per cent of white female voters.

So why have Harvey Weinstein's alleged transgressions been taken so much more seriously? One answer, it seems, has less to do with the accused than with the accuser. Weinstein's sexual-harassment scandal is unlike almost every other in recent memory because many of his accusers are celebrities, with status, fame, and success commensurate with his own. Sexual harassment is about power, not sex, and it has taken women of extraordinary power to overcome the disadvantage that most accusers face. As Susan Faludi, the author of “Backlash: the Undeclared War Against Women,” put it in an e-mail to me, “Power belongs only to the celebrities these days. If only Trump had harassed Angelina Jolie…”

Anita Hill, a woman with unusual insight into this topic, agrees that the nature of Weinstein¹s accusers is the reason that his exposure has proved to be a watershed moment. In a phone interview, Hill emphasized that sexual-harassment cases live and die on the basis of “believability,” and that, in order for the accusers to prevail, “they have to fit a narrative” that the public will buy. At least until now, very few women have had that standing.

Twenty-six years ago, Hill learned this the hard way, when, as a young Yale Law School graduate, she famously testified that Clarence Thomas was unsuitable for confirmation to the Supreme Court, on the grounds that he had repeatedly harassed her while he served as her boss, at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (I wrote about the confirmation process and Hill's allegations in the book “Strange Justice: The Selling of Clarence Thomas.” Her testimony blasted the subject of workplace sexual harassment into the public consciousness, but it was swept aside by the Senate. In televised public congressional hearings, Hill's credibility was attacked, her character smeared, and her sworn testimony dismissed as an unresolvable “he said, she said” conflict. After Thomas described the process as a “high-tech lynching (despite the fact that both he and Hill are African-American) the Senate confirmed him.

Hill, who is now a law professor at Brandeis University, told me that what Thomas possessed, like many accused harassers, and unlike many accusers, was a winning “narrative.” The lynching story resonated deeply. Without a similarly widely accepted narrative, Hill was vulnerable to detractors supplying their own readings: imputing false motives, insinuating psychological problems, and smearing her, as the American Spectator notoriously did, as “a bit nutty and a bit slutty.”

In contrast, Hill pointed out, “the Hollywood-starlet narrative is part of the folklore. The casting couch is a long-standing issue.” In addition, she told me, “people often believe the myth that only conventionally beautiful women are harassed, and so it didn't seem that far-fetched to people that this would happen to beautiful starlets who we all know and love.”

Charges levied at political figures, Hill believes, face a particularly high hurdle. Her case, like those of the women who accused Trump, she says, “was cast as a political story.” In such situations, “everything gets interpreted through a political lens, and it makes it almost impossible” for people to seriously consider whether the accused harasser “is the right person to represent you. It just becomes ‘This is our guy’ and ‘people are trying to bring him down’.” Meanwhile, as Jessica Leeds, who accused Trump, during the campaign, of groping her on a plane thirty years ago, told the Washington Post, “It is hard to reconcile that Harvey Weinstein could be brought down with this, and [President] Trump just continues to be the Teflon Don.” Melinda McGillivray, another accuser, told the Post that she, too, was having trouble accepting the double standard. “What pisses me off is that the guy is president,” she said. McGillivray accused Trump of grabbing her at Mar-a-Lago, in 2003, when she was twenty-three years old.

Hill says she is “hopeful” that, in light of the Weinstein affair and other recent sexual-harassment revelations against powerful bosses, “people will revisit the women” who accused Trump. But she fears that the Weinstein lesson “won't translate to everyday women, or even those in high-profile careers in places like Silicon Valley,” who still don't have the fame, success, and standing of movie stars.

"We need to transfer the believability," Hill said. She argued that the public needs to understand that Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie “are just like women down the street. People need to take this moment to make clear that this is not just about Hollywood.”

* * *

WHY COLIN KAEPERNICK MATTERS SO MUCH

by Dave Zirin

Some legends are told

Some turn to dust or to gold

But you will remember me

Remember me, for centuries

Last night, my eighth-grader daughter went to see the band Fall Out Boy in concert—no comments on a 13-year-old’s musical tastes, or I will smite you. Behind the band, as they played their hit song “Centuries,” was a massive flat-screen image of Colin Kaepernick.

It’s remarkable to think that just two years ago, when Kaepernick turned 28, he was in the middle of his worst season as a pro, injured and only playing nine games, with his team exploring trade options even though he was just two and a half years removed from being a play away from leading his team to a Super Bowl. (It’s worth noting that even his worst season involved his having a quarterback rating higher than 13 players who have started for teams this season.)

On the day of his 30th birthday, it’s time to retire questions like, “Why does he deserve a spot on a roster?” If you’re still asking that, then I doubt you’ve read this far, but I’ll just say that Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, and Cam Newton—winners of four of the last seven NFL MVP awards—think he should be on a team, and if you want to disagree with them, have at it.

The real question is why an NFL quarterback who expressed no public political views before 14 months ago has become an icon to people fighting racism and for social justice. Why did taking that knee during the anthem—and the injustice of his subsequent blackballing—turn Colin Kaepernick into something beyond a flesh-and-blood human being and into something of an icon? Why were people wearing Kaepernick jerseys as they stood up to the Nazis in Charlottesville? Why did 2,000 people show up in front of NFL headquarters on 50th and Park Avenue to demonstrate in his name? Why did 83-year-old Bill Russell pose on one knee while wearing his Presidential Medal of Freedom? And most importantly, why have so many people poured their passions into this person, making him representative of something well beyond anything he ever asked for?

That last question is especially important when we consider Kaepernick’s relative silence. He doesn’t do interviews. He barely tweets. He doesn’t rush to marches and ask to speak. When he has gone out in public, it’s been to do low-profile community-service projects that the mainstream media are never privy to until someone posts about it on social media.

As someone who has communicated with Kaepernick, as well as someone who has been at marches where Kaepernick shirts are almost as ubiquitous as Black Lives Matter shirts, I think I have some insight why. It’s just my own theory, but here you go. Over the last 15 years, we have seen movements that have gone up like fireworks and then down almost as quickly as they brightened the sky. This is not to discredit the remarkable people who have stayed in the trenches and never stopped fighting. These people exist, and their work keeping embers lit in this shitstorm of the 21st century should be treasured. But when we think about marches like the millions-strong anti-war rallies of the Bush years when he invaded Iraq, or the millions-strong immigrant-rights marches of 2006, or the March for LGBTQ equality in DC, or Occupy Wall Street, or even certain cities that saw the Black Lives Matter movement explode after Ferguson, they are characterized by two things. The first is the incredible excitement that accompanied their beginning, followed by demoralization of anything but the most hardened activists. Many of us know them: people radicalized in the struggle who found themselves feeling burned or burned out by dashed hopes of another world’s being possible. Too many who were swept into movements became almost skeletal creatures, walking the streets with a lantern and looking at the White House, wondering what the hell happened.

The other aspect that defined these movements is the fact that they were largely leaderless struggles. If I had a nickel for everyone I heard say that this was a strength—warning that leaders could be coopted or even killed—I could join Mar-a-Lago. On one level, this is true: We have a history that shows assassination and cooptation with horrifying regularity. But people also yearn for icons, people who are tenacious that they can look toward. People who become reference points when others talk about the importance of resistance or are shown on flat screens at Fall Out Boy concerts.

This is especially true in the Trump years, when the gap between people’s crackling rage and the kind of struggles needed to actually unseat him seem chasmic. It’s one of our hoariest, albeit truest, clichés, but nature abhors a vacuum. In an era of leaderless movements, people have decided that Kaepernick is a leader.

He is the embodiment and animating spirit of the NFL players’ protest, the most visible resistance in the United States to racism and Trumpism, even if it had nothing to do with Trump until he decided to scapegoat it for his own racialized purposes. This protest has mixed politics across the board—from supporting small-bore legislation to players’ speaking about institutionalized racism and white supremacy. But by continuing to protest during the anthem and consciously making owners, sponsors, and some fans uncomfortable, the protests are a living symbol of what so many yearn for: the plea not for peace but for justice. That’s the Kaepernick legacy.

It’s nothing he asked for, and, having talked to him, I don’t think it’s anything at this point that he even wants. He’s a deeply intelligent, soft-spoken and introverted person. He has, as journalist Shaun King wrote, “the soul of an activist,” but not the kind that hits a podium with their fist. He’s the kind that makes sure that everyone is signed in to the conference and has the right wristband to get a box lunch. He is the walking iteration of the quote from Shakespeare, “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.” Greatness has been thrust upon Colin Kaepernick. What happens now with him personally is unclear, but there is clarity in the faces of the people he has inspired. No justice, no peace. And take that knee.

* * *

* * *

DRUGS, MONEY & POLITICAL PROSTITUTION

Editor,

Since the year 2000 at least 22 pharmaceutical companies have settled criminal and civil suits for over $10 billion in fines. Companies have been found guilty of fraud, kickbacks, false claims, and off label promotion. For example, In May 2007 Perdue Pharmaceuticals, makers of the opioid Oxycontin, was found guilty of “off label promotion” and paid over $600 million in fines, one of the largest in history. This occurred during the acceleration of the opioid epidemic according to the Center for Disease Control. During one of the largest opioid epidemics in history, between 2014 and 2016, the pharmaceutical industry spent more than $100 million lobbying Congress. Then in April 2016 at the height of the deadliest drug epidemic in US history, and with the knowledge of at least 16 years of criminality by the pharmaceutical industry, “Congress effectively stripped the D.E.A., (drug enforcement administration) of its most potent weapon against large drug companies suspected of spilling prescription narcotics onto the nation streets.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2017/investigations/dea-drug-industry-congress/?utm_term=.764ff23c5fd0.

During a massive public health crisis Congress unanimously passed an Act entitled “Ensuring Patient Access and Drug Enforcement Act of 2016” which weakens the DEA’s ability to go after drug distributors. Congress had the audacity to lie about the purpose of the Act in the very definition of the Act: “Factors as may be relevant to and consistent with the public health and safety”. Not one politician voted against this act which was destined to accelerate the opioid epidemic that had already claimed more than 200,000 lives. Could there be a more crystal clear example of politicians servicing the 1%?

Albert Einstein’s comment about craven politicians was right on target when he wrote; “members of legislative bodies are selected by political parties, largely financed or otherwise influenced by private capitalists. The consequence is that the representatives of the people do not in fact sufficiently protect the interest of the underprivileged sections of the population”. https://monthlyreview.org/2009/05/01/why-socialism/reference.

A 2014 study by Princeton University supported Einstein in its conclusion: “business interests have substantial independent impact on US government policies while the average citizen have little or no independent influence”. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/perspectives-on-politics/article/testing-theories-of-american-politics-elites-interest-groups-and-average-citizens/62327F513959D0A304D4893B382B992B

We currently live under a system that has become “democracy” in word only, where the health of the vast majority is sacrificed to the profits of Corporations. We the 99% need a new system. Let us build a system without the corruption of money, a system of economic and political egalitarianism.

Dr. Nayvin Gordon, Oakland

(Dr. Gordon is a Family Physician in California who has writtenmany articles about health and politics. He can be reached at gordonnayvin@yahoo.com)

* * *

BECK’S CHEMICAL CONNECTIONS

For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water.

The chemical, perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA, has been linked to kidney cancer, birth defects, immune system disorders and other serious health problems.

So scientists and administrators in the EPA’s Office of Water were alarmed in late May when a top Trump administration appointee insisted upon the rewriting of a rule to make it harder to track the health consequences of the chemical, and therefore regulate it.

The revision was among more than a dozen demanded by the appointee, Nancy B. Beck, after she joined the EPA’s toxic chemical unit in May as a top deputy. For the previous five years, she had been an executive at the American Chemistry Council, the chemical industry’s main trade association.

The changes directed by Dr. Beck may result in an “underestimation of the potential risks to human health and the environment” caused by PFOA and other so-called legacy chemicals no longer sold on the market, the Office of Water’s top official warned in a confidential internal memo obtained by The New York Times…

(New York Times)

(Click to enlarge)

* * *

RELEASE OF JFK FILES PROMPTS SCRAMBLE FOR FRESH LEADS AND THEORIES

Files comprise final 1% of records held by federal government

In 1992, Congress ordered documents to be released within 25 years

by Tom Dart

The US government released 2,800 previously classified JFK assassination files on Thursday, sending historians, researchers and conspiracy theorists scrambling online to scour some of the last remaining documents for fresh revelations.

But president Donald Trump delayed the release of other documents, saying he had “no choice” but to consider “national security, law enforcement and foreign affairs concerns” raised mostly by the FBI and CIA.

The files comprise almost the final 1% of records held by the federal government and their publication follows a release in July when the record-keepers, the National Archives, posted 3,801 documents online, mostly formerly released documents with previously redacted portions. An administration official told reporters on Thursday that the files that remain secret have information that “remains sensitive depending on its context”.

Trump ordered the agencies to review those redactions over the course of six months, the official said, to ensure more documents reach the public. The next deadline for documents is 26 April 2018.

One of the first interesting documents to be unearthed as journalists, scholars and the public pored over them, was a memo written by director J Edgar Hoover that said the FBI had warning of a potential death threat to Lee Harvey Oswald.

“There is nothing further on the Oswald case except that he is dead,” Hoover wrote. “Last night we received a call in our Dallas office from a man talking in a calm voice and saying he was a member of a committee organized to kill Oswald.

“We at once notified the chief of police and he assured us Oswald would be given sufficient protection. This morning we called the chief of police again warning of the possibility of some effort against Oswald and again he assured us adequate protection would be given. However, this was not done.”

Hoover admitted that he did not have “firm” information about the man who shot Oswald dead, Jack Ruby, but nonetheless declared that his real name was Rubenstein, and noted rumors of “underworld activity”.

The FBI sent an agent to Oswald’s deathbed in the hopes of a confession, to no success. Ruby denied making any phone call.

But then Hoover said that he and Nicholas Katzenbach, the deputy attorney general, already feared the spread of rumors and conspiracy theories. He noted that Oswald had visited Mexico City, called the Cuban embassy there, and sent a letter to the Soviet embassy about a visa.

“The thing I am concerned about, and so is Mr. Katzenbach, is having something issued so that we can convince the public that Oswald is the real assassin,” Hoover said.

According to the National Archives, 88% of records related to Kennedy’s murder were already fully open and another 11% released but partially redacted. In total, that makes for about 5m pages.

After interest in conspiracy theories surged following JFK, the 1991 Oliver Stone thriller starring Kevin Costner, Congress passed the JFK Assassination Records Collection Act in 1992 and mandated that all documents must be released to the public within 25 years. That deadline was Thursday.

On Thursday, officials told reporters they would not comment on conspiracy theories. “Honestly we’re not going to comment on the content of the files,” one official said. “It’s the practice of the National Archives to leave it up to the researchers.”

In the run-up to the release, assassination experts expressed concern that agencies such as the FBI and CIA would ask Trump to block the release of information they consider to be sensitive for national security reasons, such as revealing sources, recent operations or tactics. A small number of documents are thought to have been compiled in the 1990s.

Trump tried to turn the assassination to his own political advantage last year when he spuriously claimed that the father of his then rival for the Republican presidential nomination, Ted Cruz, was seen with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before Oswald killed John F Kennedy.

“You know, his father was with Lee Harvey Oswald prior to Oswald’s being – you know, shot,” Trump told Fox News in May last year. “I mean, the whole thing is ridiculous. What is this, right, prior to his being shot, and nobody brings it up. They don’t even talk about that. That was reported and nobody talks about it. But I think it’s horrible.”

He added: “What was he doing with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before the death, before the shooting? It’s horrible.”

Fact-checkers have found Trump’s claimed link “implausible at best and ridiculous at worst”.

Last Saturday, Trump tweeted: “Subject to the receipt of further information, I will be allowing, as President, the long blocked and classified JFK FILES to be opened.”

Releasing the files in the face of internal pressure chimes with a narrative that Trump and his camp have previously advanced: that the president is a champion of transparency who seeks to “drain the swamp” of government agencies with their own secretive agendas who are hostile to his presidency.

Roger Stone, a Trump ally and former adviser, tweeted on Monday: “The Deep State boys will undermine the President’s order by redacting and withholding as much information as they can.”

Stone co-wrote a 2013 book positing that Lyndon Johnson, Kennedy’s vice-president and the man who succeeded him, was the mastermind behind the murder.

Last week, Stone told Alex Jones, the Infowars radio host and conspiracy theorist, that he “had the opportunity to make the case directly to the president of the United States by phone as to why I believe it is essential” that the documents be released, “because I believe they show that Oswald was trained, nurtured and put in place by the Central Intelligence Agency. It sheds very bad light on the Deep State.”

But once the thousands of new documents have been fully analysed by researchers, which will take weeks, the collection is expected to provide background information to help build a more complete picture of known events and individuals, rather than offer any stunning twists in the tale – such as a second gunman, long a favourite theory among those who do not believe Oswald shot Kennedy as the presidential motorcade travelled past the Texas School Book Depository in downtown Dallas on the afternoon of 22 November 1963.

Oswald, a former US marine who spent more than two years living in Minsk after defecting to the Soviet Union in 1959, travelled to Mexico City about two months before he killed Kennedy. Researchers are hoping the documents shed light on possible interactions with Cuban and Russian officials there. Oswald was fatally shot by Jack Ruby, a Dallas nightclub owner, two days after Kennedy’s death.

The Warren commission found in 1964 that Oswald was the lone gunman, but most Americans doubt the official line.

A Gallup poll to mark the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s death, in 2013, found the percentage of Americans who believe that Oswald did not act alone had dipped to its lowest in nearly 50 years – even so, 61% of respondents thought that Kennedy was the victim of a conspiracy. Favourite theories included the involvement of the mafia, the federal government in general, the CIA, and Cuba under Fidel Castro.

(The Guardian of London)

* * *

(photo by Susie de Castro)

* * *

ONCE A COUNTRY IS USED TO LIARS, it takes generations to bring the truth back.

— Gore Vidal

* * *

THE BERGSBERG BOAT: THE INFANT, MALE, POLLOCK, FRANCIS.

The recording of last night's (2017-11-03) KNYO and KMEC Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio show is available to download and enjoy via http://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com

Also there you'll find directions to many not necessarily radio-useful though worthwhile goods that I set aside for you while putting the show together, such as, for example:

"A generative adversarial network combines two neural networks engaged in a zero-sum competition. The result is a form of unsupervised machine learning that can produce imaginary celebrities like the ones shown in this one-hour video." (This is what I read you the long tech article about.) https://boingboing.net/2017/10/31/hypnotic-video-of-imaginary-ce.html

The 1939 RCA TRK-9 is my favorite. Or the 1948 Crosley Spectator. Or the 1949 Sonora "The Sphinx" with magnifier. Or the 1953 Zenith G2355.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1BdQcJ2ZYY

I'm not sure I understand this, but I think the object of the game is to save the little girl from her horrible drunken abusive father while avoiding being kicked apart.

https://theawesomer.com/detroit-become-human-trailer/452294/

And behold: the Peter Frampton of 1958.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hHlmsMhcdrM

— Marco McClean

 

64 Responses to Mendocino County Today: Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017

  1. LouisBedrock Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 4:12 am

    Sunday School Lesson:

    1. Jesus drives out demons, kills all the pigs, and gets kicked out of town.

    28When he arrived at the other side in the region of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men coming from the tombs met him. They were so violent that no one could pass that way. 29“What do you want with us, Son of God?” they shouted. “Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?”

    30Some distance from them a large herd of pigs was feeding. 31The demons begged Jesus, “If you drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs.”
    32He said to them, “Go!” So they came out and went into the pigs, and the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake and died in the water. 33Those tending the pigs ran off, went into the town and reported all this, including what had happened to the demon-possessed men. 34Then the whole town went out to meet Jesus. And when they saw him, they pleaded with him to leave their region.

    Matthew 8, NIT

    2. God sends bears to maul children for mocking Elisha.

    23 From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, some boys came out of the town and jeered at him. “Get out of here, baldy!” they said. “Get out of here, baldy!” 24 He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the Lord. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the boys. 25 And he went on to Mount Carmel and from there returned to Samaria.

    Kings II, 2, NIT

    • LouisBedrock Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 4:13 am

      Read the Bible: It will make you an Infidel.

    • james marmon Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 6:48 am

      Craig text me and suggested I share this with you Louis

      Mmmmm My Lord
      (Hare Krishna)
      My my my Lord
      (Hare Krishna)
      My sweet Lord
      (Krishna, Krishna)
      Oohh..
      (Hare Hare)

      Now I really wanna see you
      (Hare Rama)
      I really wanna be with you
      (Hare Rama)
      I really wanna see you Lord
      Ahh
      But it takes so long, my Lord
      (Hallelujah)
      Mmmmm
      My Lord
      (Hallelujah)
      My my my Lord

      (Hare Krishna)
      My sweet Lord
      (Hare Krishna)
      My sweet Lord
      (Krishna, Krishna)
      My Lord
      (Hare Hare)
      Mmmmm

      (Gurur Brahma)
      Mmmmm
      (Gurur Vishnu)
      Mmmmm
      (Gurur Devo)
      Mmmmm
      (Maheshwara)
      My sweet Lord
      (Gurur Sakshaat)
      My sweet Lord
      (Parabrahma)
      My, my my Lord

      (Tasmayi Shree)
      My, my my my Lord
      (Guruve Namah)
      My sweet Lord

      (Hare Rama
      Hare Krishna)
      My sweet Lord
      (Hare Krishna)
      My sweet Lord
      (Krishna Krishna)

      https://youtu.be/0kNGnIKUdMI?list=RD0kNGnIKUdMI

      • Craig Stehr Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 9:23 am

        Thanks for posting it, James. ;-)

      • LouisBedrock Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 11:36 am

        Chanting gibberish is the last resort of true believers who can’t forge an intelligent argument defending their archaic superstitions.

    • Harvey Reading Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 8:11 am

      But, I thought that god was love. I’m so confused, now.

    • susie de castro Reply

      November 6, 2017 at 11:31 am

      Jesus doesn’t drive, Lou.

  2. BB Grace Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 5:09 am

    The Cult of Environmentalism word of the day: Luminiferous aether

  3. LouisBedrock Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 6:46 am

    BB Grace claims that editor Bruce Anderson sent her the following e-mail.
    (MCT, 1 Nov)

    “Dear BB Grace:

    I would not have permitted Mr. Bedrock’s vicious and lunatic attack on you if I’d seen it before it was posted. I’m very sorry and ashamed that I didn’t catch it. I hope you are not deterred from contributing. Very best and ashamed in Boonville, I am
    Bruce Anderson, AVA

    “Very best and ashamed in Boonville, I am”?????

    What?

    Does anyone think the editor of the AVA could forge a sentence like,

    “Very best and ashamed in Boonville, I am”?

    Grace is a prevaricator and a fool.
    There was no death threat. She made it up.
    She wrote the apology, not Bruce Anderson.
    Nothing she writes should be taken seriously.

    If there were such an e-mail with such an apology, she could prove it by clicking “reply” and sending the e-mail back to Mr. Anderson.

    Since it doesn’t exist, she cannot do so.

    Grace. Disgrace.

    • james marmon Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 6:59 am

      Are you suggesting that Ms. Grace is guilty of “Fake News”?

  4. Bruce Anderson Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 7:29 am

    Insulting BB Grace was tiresome the first time, now it’s cruel. What’s the point?
    That you’re smarter than she is?

    • LouisBedrock Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 7:31 am

      I will desist.
      But my comments were responses to mendacious accusations by Grace–as you yourself have acknowledged. And for which she has not apologized.

    • Stephen Rosenthal Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 7:56 am

      Thank you Bruce. When I first subscribed to the online AVA, I did so to keep abreast of happenings in Mendocino County. Yours is the only source I trust. Most of the comments were respectful and dealt primarily with topics within the context of Mendocino County Today. As a member of the community I appreciate and participate in it. But lately I’ve been appalled and disgusted by the continuing onslaught of personal insults directed at certain commenters. What’s even worse is that some seem to enjoy partaking in viciously discrediting others to the point it becomes the only reason for the comment. I, for one, do not like what the comment section has become and I’m glad to learn that I’m not alone.

      • Harvey Reading Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 8:29 am

        For your information, the only reason many of us outatowners read AVA is because of a plug made for it by Alexander Cockburn years ago. Without Cockburn’s publicity, we wouldn’t know that AVA existed. Mr. Anderson apparently gladly accepts our money, and, I had supposed, our opinions, which often are often quite different from those of Mendo locals. If he would prefer us to be gone, let him say so.

        I get quite a laugh at AVA staff, who one minute condemn “outsiders” for making comments on local matters about which they do not have the insight and background that comes with being a local, and on the other hand condemn us when we do not address local issues.

        It would be helpful for Mr. Anderson to make clear just what he is looking for in the way of readers.

        • Stephen Rosenthal Reply

          November 5, 2017 at 8:50 am

          To take a page out of your favorite book, please cite one reference in my comment condemning “outatowners.” While my primary interest is in local issues, it is in no means limited to it. I have no problem with opinions that differ from my own and, frankly, welcome them as a means for enlightenment and avenues of discussion. What I object to is the repugnant, boorish and sometimes vulgar personal insults that have become all too commonplace in this section.

          • Harvey Reading Reply

            November 5, 2017 at 8:58 am

            Your own comment.

            “Thank you Bruce. When I first subscribed to the online AVA, I did so to keep abreast of happenings in Mendocino County. Yours is the only source I trust. Most of the comments were respectful and dealt primarily with topics within the context of Mendocino County Today.”

            • Stephen Rosenthal Reply

              November 5, 2017 at 9:35 am

              Try again Harvey. “Mendocino County Today” is the heading of a daily column that deals with many topics, not those exclusive to Mendocino County. While it is my go-to source for information about the County, I also enjoy the extensive coverage pertaining to sports, world events, national politics, cinema, literature, etc.

              • Harvey Reading Reply

                November 5, 2017 at 11:30 am

                No need to, Stephen.

                • LouisBedrock Reply

                  November 5, 2017 at 3:27 pm

                  Oh, the sanctimony!
                  The sanctimony!

                  • Stephen Rosenthal Reply

                    November 6, 2017 at 8:20 am

                    Louis Bedrock 7:31 am: “I will desist.”
                    Louis Bedrock 8:25 am: “McUrine”.

                    • Harvey Reading

                      November 6, 2017 at 11:25 am

                      A fine example, dear sir, of making quotes, out of their contexts. Thank you so much.

        • Bruce Anderson Reply

          November 5, 2017 at 9:49 am

          I guess I should report myself to Chomsky, but it’s tedious to have to defend basic civility. As for McEwen, the only reporter in the country to give us a true picture of what happens in our courtrooms every day, and a man of rare gifts, I’ve asked him to stay off the comment line late at night. Cockburn, incidentally, thought I was way too generous with space, and that was before cyber-maniacs stalked the ethers. Myself, I’m most interested in the place I live, which is Mendocino County, and I’m interested in what all kinds of people say, not only the party liners. I don’t find the left echo chambers very interesting, and I’ve always tried to keep the ava from becoming one more.

      • George Hollister Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 8:33 am

        I plead guilty for being a hate baiter. Jerry Philbrick should fess up too. The spewing of hate doesn’t happen in a vacuum. All is a part of free speech. And getting tired of it, and tuning out is a part as well. These are lessons places like Berkeley need to learn. Just let it be, and as long as people’s rights are protected, the indecencies tend to speak for themselves.

        Of course, God can do what he wants with it. After all, it’s his paper.

        • LouisBedrock Reply

          November 5, 2017 at 8:37 am

          God doesn’t exist.
          However I agree with most of what you have written.

  5. Harvey Reading Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 8:17 am

    Mr. Anderson, I would suggest that you put a leash on your overweight Chihuahua cum court reporter. His threats of violence are much worse than anything said about Ms. Grace.

    • LouisBedrock Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 8:25 am

      McEwen is an aspiring young writer of 65 who has yet to finish his first novel, Legends if the Dead. He probably will never finish because, as he claims,

      1. Isabelle Allende has somehow stolen his plot and characters for her most recent novel.

      2. His superiors at the AVA are conspiring to assure his failure:

      “It would be nice to have it appear in the paper in hopes of attracting
      a publisher’s interest, but that doesn’t seem to be to the editor’s
      liking.  They treat me like they own me, and in fact they sort of do, …”

      3. AVA editor Bruce Anderson is plagiarizing his work: 

      “What worries me most is that Anderson would take it and make one of his books out of it—I can’t tell you how appalled I was with the last one, which was 30% my own work.”

      Poor McEwen: How can anyone succeed when the entire world is against him—including his colleagues at the only place in the world that would give him a job—and Isabel Allende?

      McUrine was a friend for a while.  We exchanged e-mails and books.  Trying to nudge him into rehab, I mentioned my own problems with drugs thirty years ago.  To my surprise, he alluded to this in a comment the following day.  I was furious and told him to f**k off.

      At first, he sent several obsequious, whining, pleading e-mails apologizing and asserting that I was his only friend. 

      Then, as drunks do, he turned nasty. Now, with his incessant insults, he’s behaving like a spoiled, petulant child whose parents have reprimanded him. Or a rejected ex-girlfriend.

      Hell hath no wrath like a drunk scorned.

      I think McUrine was mortified that he misspelled “Epictetus” and I corrected him; and that Harvey Reading needed to explain to him that sarcasm isn’t a figure of speech.

      In Edward Albee’s “Zoo Story”, the character Jerry describes his landlady in this way:

      —The landlady is a fat, ugly, mean, stupid, unwashed, misanthropic, cheap, drunken bag of garbage.

      He could have been describing McUrine.

  6. Lazarus Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 8:27 am

    “STRANGERS ON A TRAIN”…
    by Eleanor Cooney
    Technically well written, but such a horrible commentary on who some are as human beings. The haves and the have nots, the fit and the unfit, the smart and the dumb…The author at least wonders if the man still lives, big of her…
    As always,
    Laz

    • George Hollister Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 8:42 am

      I thought it was well written, too. But I read the opposite of condescension. She is being open minded in a situation that most of us would not be.

      EC, obviously, is an anti-oil Environmentalist. That is OK, it is tangential to the piece.

      • Lazarus Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 9:32 am

        I know that situation, I’ve seen it up close. If that man had not sat at her table she would have gone on thinking of him as a pathetic idiot. I guess there are those would give her a trophy because she saw the man as just another human after spending one meal with him…? Good for her… And the oil references are irrelevant…She’s an elitist snob straight up…
        As always,
        Laz

    • Harvey Reading Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 9:35 am

      I saw the–I agree, probably elitist–couple feeling condescension, perhaps even revulsion, at first, and then overcoming it. The story is probably the best piece of writing I’ve ever seen here, for what that’s worth.

      My only real quibble: not all “cowboys” are young or lean.

    • michael turner Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 1:28 pm

      My guess about the unfortunate young man:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prader%E2%80%93Willi_syndrome

    • LouisBedrock Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 3:03 pm

      Good comments. I agree with everybody else.

      In the early 1970s, I was teaching English composition at Philadelphia Community College. My best student was a very large, overweight black kid from North Philly who was a naturally gifted writer.

      He was a really nice, quiet young man, but he never smiled: he seemed to have a permanent scowl. When I asked him about it once, he told me that it was dangerous to smile in North Philly. It could get you killed.

      One week he was absent for all three classes. When he returned to class the following week, he told me what had happened: He had been at a subway station around ten o’clock in the evening. The only other person at the station was an elderly woman. His appearance frightened her so she called the police and he was arrested—this was Frank Rizzo’s Philadelphia.

      I agree with Lazarus and Harvey about the quality of the writing and the danger of judging people by their appearance.

  7. james marmon Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 8:46 am

    The only reason I started commenting on the AVA was to expose corruption within Mendocino County government, specifically Child Welfare, Substance Abuse and Mental Health, three areas that I’m an expert in.

    James Marmon MSW

    • james marmon Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 9:39 am

      The only reason I comment on things outside of MC (National and State Level) is when they relate to MC at a local level.

      Opioid Crisis a Public Health Emergency

      “The declaration allows federal and state government officials to make temporary appointments of addiction experts to help respond to the crisis. It also allows federal officials to shift funds within current HIV programs to provide addiction treatment. It also allows the Department of Labor to provide job programs to the unemployed, recognizing the impact of unemployment has on drug addiction.”

      http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/10/26/donald-trump-declare-opioid-crisis-public-health-emergency/

      Jobs, Jobs, Jobs.

      • james marmon Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 9:49 am

        North Coast clinics get $1.4 million to battle opioid crisis

        “The national opioid epidemic claimed a total of 45 lives through overdoses in 2016 in Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino counties, a region that saw nearly 620,000 total opioid pain prescriptions written last year, according to the latest state data.

        That same year brought 1,925 overdose deaths, 3,935 emergency visits and 4,095 overdose hospitalizations, the grim harvest of a medical crisis health officials and medical providers are trying their best to address.”

        http://www.pressdemocrat.com/news/7421905-181/north-coast-clinics-get-14?ref=related&artslide=0

        God Bless President Trump

        • james marmon Reply

          November 5, 2017 at 10:02 am

          You don’t hear the good ER doctors condemning substance abuse treatment do you? If they weren’t spending too much time on drug overdoses they would have more time to deal with others, including the mentally ill.

          jus sayin

  8. Harvey Reading Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 10:18 am

    Re: ED NOTE (school uniforms)

    I stand by my original comment, with one additional point: uniforms do not save money for parents.

    I have heard that argument since I was in grammar school (mid 50s-early 60s), and the unified district was considering a uniform requirement. Even in backwoods Calaveras County, the notion was quickly quashed ‘way back then.

    Kid have to be dressed during the hours they are in school, and for many of the hours when they are not. So, at best, it’s a toss-up on clothing costs. However, uniform clothing often costs more than “regular” clothing in many cases, and, with growing kids, new uniforms must be purchased annually, or oftener, with a corresponding overall increase in clothing costs.

    I prefer NOT to see uniform, cookie-cutter children being turned out of our schools, irrespective of how much the Chamber and its component businesses, would like uniformity and unquestioned respect for mighty authority. I like people who think, not those who simply regurgitate uniform, authoritarian “principles” or “codes” that have been pounded into them over a 12-year period.

    The biggest problems with our schools are underfunding, overcrowding and teaching to a curriculum devised by administrators and legislators that continues to teach mythology for history (which must be erased at the university level, wasting the time of college instructors), toeing the line on authority, and teaching to ridiculous, meaningless in terms of actual knowledge, standardized tests. Nothing much has changed since my school days.

    • Mark Scaramella Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 5:51 pm

      I’ll never forget the unironic remark one of my fellow USAF lieutenants made after a few drinks at the Officer’s Club in Biloxi Mississippi in the early 1970s (He had a master’s degree in economics from Notre Dame): “Seventeen years of strict Catholic upbringing is enough to make an atheist out of anyone!”

      • susie de castro Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 6:09 pm

        And you believed him?

      • Harvey Reading Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 6:53 pm

        Good one.

      • George Hollister Reply

        November 6, 2017 at 8:40 am

        Classic. Reminds me of a long late and illustrious Berkeley professor, I knew too well, that complained about his Catholic upbringing, including Catholic school. I guess it did not occur to him the advantages that education provided. Everyone I know who complains about their Catholic upbringing, is also doing well.

        • Harvey Reading Reply

          November 6, 2017 at 8:57 am

          So are even more who went through the public education system, George. Primary and secondary education, either public or private, is nothing to brag about in the U.S. Never has been. The first year or two of college is mainly devoted to scouring the brainwashing from the brains of kids who were subjected to it.

        • Mark Scaramella Reply

          November 6, 2017 at 10:16 am

          I commenting on school uniforms, not Catholicism. Oh well…

      • susie de castro Reply

        November 6, 2017 at 10:47 am

        And, you believed him.

  9. Harvey Reading Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 11:27 am

    Re: “The women¹s voices swayed very few voters, it would seem. Even after the “Access Hollywood” tape surfaced, allowing voters to hear Trump boasting about “grabbing” women “by the pussy,” he was elected President.”

    To me the vote for Trump had more to do with voting against the pathetic policies of and candidate selected by the other right wing of the wealth party, a candidate who was selected in a most nondemocratic manner, even by U.S. so-called standards of democracy. The sad part is that the U.S. public has difficulty counting up to three. Eight years of Clinton rule and eight years of Obama rule were apparently enough. There was a real choice on the ballot, though. She was ignored.

    Even though Clinton got a relatively few more popular votes, the electoral college did her in (thank goodness). Yet, I hear of no serious movement among liberals to do away with the electoral college, or to rewrite the aged, and failed, Constitution to reflect the world as it is now, where slavery is not an issue, and where the rule by the wealthy must end, and be replaced by democratic apportionment at all levels of government if we are to survive.

    C’est la vie

    • BB Grace Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      I doubt anyone here worked harder than I did to put Jill Stein on the ballot because Stein would have never been on a ballot if not for the Independent candidate for president in 1996 and 2000, Ralph Nader, who was never registered Green, campaigning for “More Voices and Choices”, who accepted the Green Party nomination to achieve that purpose. Once the Green Party was on the ballot David Cobb and Greens decided they needed a candidate of, by and for their party. We, an army of Independents, didn’t begrudge them and continued to work in 2004 for “more voices and choices”, which Greens became as hostile if not more violent than the Democrats who enjoyed their dirty tricks. It’s a shame YouTube was not around.

      Republicans, we were warned, would be the only ones signing our petitions. That’s why they called us spoilers as Democrats and Greens acted like the owned us. The truth is Republicans ROTFLTAO when they saw us. They had no interest in signing our petitions. The Democrats hunted us down and colluded with Greens to actually hurt us (which leads up to antifa recent same old actions).

      Both Greens and Democrats are parties with old ideas sustained by main stream media while they use youth, sucker youth, sucker immigrants, sucker minorities into bad deals. Hell they sucker themselves into bad deals, just look at Mendocino. What chance does a young person with dreams have here? Drugs? Jail? STD? They have to compete with people who are here illegally for lower wages and they don’t get hired by the minorities that own businesses. What do they learn in school? Black Lives Matter because there’s not enough black lives living here to really matter?

      Jill Stein showed her true colors when she raised more funds, nearly $7 Million, for HRC’s 2017 recounts in three states Trump won. There was nothing non partisan about it. Stein licked HRC pumps.

      Tagging a bulldozer surrounded by “water protectors” (why do we need an EPA when we have water protectors?) was Stein’s greatest moment on the campaign trail, talk about pathetic.

      Slavery is alive and well. The issue of slavery a century ago is not just to screw the Yankee banker’s war deeper into US history insulting the injury suffered by the South, that continues, Katrina, Harvey, Irma, Maria, etc., but it covers up the discussion of slavery happening now. Sanctuary State is perpetuating and protecting slavery, but if all slavery is to you is what happened in the South that was so bad you have to tear down statues, burn flags and have your congressman earn his dole by making it an issue as if it’s your issue because you remember and know Civil War history better than those who actually knew and know people, your eyes are not open to what is slavery and what it looks like in broad daylight, which it is, everyday serving breakfast lunch and dinner, giving massages, doing housekeeping and raising other’s babies, mowing lawns and building houses selling guns and roses, they just look like regular nice, quite, shy people.. if you sat across from them on a train you might even write a story for the AVA about them as simple people. But when you know what it looks like and you can’t call ICE or the Sheriff or the police because main stream media washes all immigrants brown and slaves black, while all the rich are white, truth is revolutionary.

      • Harvey Reading Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 2:03 pm

        Oh, my. Hard to decide whether to laugh or cry.

      • LouisBedrock Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 2:48 pm

        J—- F—— C—–!

  10. susie de castro Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 11:43 am

    RV Reading

    About women: The world is full of masochists.

    Metaphorical Version

    Wake up, Little Susie
    Wake Up!
    Wake up, Little Susie
    Wake up!

    _____________________________

    On another note……..

    Louis,

    There’s a story of the Sufi figure Mullah Nasruddin, who is both a fool and a wise man. He was out one day in his garden sprinkling breadcrumbs around the flowerbeds. A neighbor came by and asked, ‘‘Mullah, why are you doing that?’’

    Nasruddin answered, ‘‘Oh, I do it to keep the tigers away.’’

    The neighbor said, ‘‘But there aren’t any tigers within thousands of miles of here.’’

    Nasruddin replied, ‘‘Effective, isn’t it?

    ___________________________________________

    SIMPLY AWESOME, NEVER SEEN BEFORE
     “Visual Sounds of the Amazon” on Vimeo:

    ref=em-share

    • Harvey Reading Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 11:45 am

      I thought videos had been banned long ago. A special exemption, maybe?

    • susie de castro Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 12:10 pm

      It was supposed to be a link, only! I sent the link to the AVA and it never turned into a little monitor (video), for example.
      How can one keep it from turning into a video in the Comments section? I would like to know. NOT DONE INTENTIONALLY.

      As for the humorless RV – the poor soul is in such bad shape (how bad you say?) — If a HA HA or a HE HE landed on his nose, he’d swap at it.

      • Harvey Reading Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 12:34 pm

        I thought my comments to you last evening were hilarious.

      • susie de castro Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 12:42 pm

        APPARENTLY, on You Tube it stays a link —Vimeo (watch out! no pun intended) is the issue.

        Watch “Visual Sounds of The Amazon (project)” on YouTube
        https://youtu.be/fFiD4eZ_RoA
        IT IS NOT THE SAME VIDEO, BUT EXCITING, NONETHELESS.

    • LouisBedrock Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 3:07 pm

      Good story, Doña Susana—I had heard it before.
      It reminds me of the story of the Buddhist at the hot dog stand who tells the vendor:

      —Make me one with everything.

      • susie de castro Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 3:35 pm

        •re: hot dog vendor…

        My German friend said this joke put him in a bad mood. He was a sour Kraut.

  11. Steve Heilig Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    “DRUNK” IN “PUBLIC” – A PARABLE

    Innocent traveler walks into a bar, takes a seat, orders a drink. Recalls being in here a long time before and having some great intelligent chats with the locals, whether they were truly local or not.

    Traveler soon realizes there is a group argument down at end of bar, mostly older guys yelling at once, about everything and nothing. Obviously they’ve been at it forever, like, years, as it’s mostly about stuff nobody else would know or care about. At least one guy tries to out-yell anybody else and seems to have strong opinions on everything, everyday, regardless of knowledge or experience, and even when told to turn down the insults comes right back with more, resorting to insults about somebody’s weight. Another guy cites Breitbart as if that means something to adults. Etc etc etc, ad nauseum. The others just chime in with insults and lectures sometimes, and sometimes it gets personal. Some conspiracy-type hooey about politics, vaccines, chemtrails, the usual sneak in. Once in awhile somebody gets an actually funny and/or informed line in. There’s a spiritual quest-type and a couple of nice folks at another table in the corner, adding their own two cents once in awhile too. They too tend to get insulted by the other regulars, though. It’s mostly pointless but all come back for more. Just another day at the bar.

    Traveler signals bartender, who comes over.

    “Another?” he asks.

    “Gawd, yes” says guest. “But man, what’s with those guys, how do you stand it? Same ‘Often wrong, never in doubt’ characters every day, I bet? Some of them maybe don’t even drink? But don’t they drive everybody else out of here?”

    Bartender sighs, rolls his eyes with the patience of Job, and replies, “Well, probably, yeah. They could argue privately but choose to do it publicly here, Lord knows why. But likely some of these guys got nowhere else to go, as nobody would put up wit them. And I guess it helps pay the bills.”

    “Let me buy YOU a drink, man,” says the guest. “You’ve sure earned it.”

    • LouisBedrock Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 3:33 pm

      However, you are above any of that.

      I confess that I miss your pieces.

      • Steve Heilig Reply

        November 5, 2017 at 11:23 pm

        I would hope (against hope) that any grownup would be above many of the juvenile type of insults tossed around here.

        But, re my articles, thanks. Problem was, I became embarrassed to share some of my pieces with others, who would say things like “Great publication – but, whoa, how did it colonized by THAT crew of online commenters?” Etc… But maybe will try some more…

    • susie de castro Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 3:40 pm

      The absurdity…

      Gives new meaning to drinking and driving.

      “Some of them maybe don’t even drink? But don’t they drive everybody else out of here?”

  12. George Hollister Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    Colin Kaepernick should do some reflecting, and then write an essay entitled “Why we stand for the National Anthem”. And then send copies to all the high schools in the America, the NFL owners, the NFL commissioner, and the President of the United States. There are times when the reasons for some of our most basic social functions needs a refresher course.

    My guess is, if there is an ounce of sense in Colin’s brain, he might learn something. So would the rest of us.

  13. susie de castro Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 4:43 pm

    The skill to get hot without getting mad — to have a good argument that doesn’t become personal — is critical in life.

    Kids, Would You Please Start Fighting? – NYTimes.com
    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/11/04/opinion/sunday/kids-would-you-please-start-fighting.html

    • George Hollister Reply

      November 5, 2017 at 5:34 pm

      When a person’s faith is challenged, as is done here often, the response is hate and anger, or no response at all.

      We all have faith, even those who live in denial of it.

  14. Randy Burke Reply

    November 5, 2017 at 5:58 pm

    GADZOOKS. Sunday comments are equal in entertainment to the AVA news. What a collection of enviable sorts to have something of true talent, wisdom, and smarts to carry me through the day. But to get through all that has been presented today may take me a week…. Sorry for having poor eyesight and a slowness to read, but what is there in cyber print seems to be truly there. Thanks Bruce for the stated interest in this County; a county of double edged sword meanings, appearances, and a way to get away with murder.

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