Letters (Feb 21, 2018)

by AVA News Service, February 21, 2018

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I had a great one once. His father was a traveling man, a big friendly shepherd collie mix owned by a well to do neighbor. My cousin had a nondescript little female, smart as a whip. I bred the two dogs and kept the best of the litter and called him Butch. Butch was everything a dog should be and more. He treed three raccoons, he chased deer out of the garden, he kept bobcats away. He was kind to small children and tolerated fools. When I was absent from home one afternoon two children teased a rattlesnake and when it struck Butch thrust himself between and was bitten on the neck. By the time I arrived home he was so swollen that he looked more like a big furry balloon than a dog. He was terribly sick for about a week but survived. When I sold the ranch and moved to Santa Rosa I didn't have the heart to take Butch away from the wild country he had always known and left him there with neighbors who loved and pampered him for the rest of his days.

Lucille Estes


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We would like to express our deep apprecaiation for your generdonation of two ads in your paper to our 16th Annual St. Elizabeth Seton Crab Feed. It was a huge success with our largest crowd yet and over 61 raffle prizes. Your participation helps make our crab feed suchg a wonderful  valley experience.

Our deepest appreciation.

John Schultz and the Parish Advsory Council Officers


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Re: Proposed changes to Class K

Dear Chair Hamburg and Honorable Board Members:

The purpose of this letter is to express my opposition to most of the proposed changes to the Class K ordinance.

I chose to move to Mendocino County because it is a unique place. Mendocino County is not like other counties and that is a good thing. Our county is rural and rugged. Mendocino County has a personality that other counties do not. We are known for being anti-establishment, self-reliant rugged individuals with a keen sense of community. Out of that attitude came the Class K Ordinance. Class K provides the opportunity for the average man or woman to build an affordable house on their property for their family without being hindered by the ever changing technical codes that are difficult for the average person to understand. During my 12 ½ years as a senior inspector for Mendocino County I performed plan review for and inspected hundreds of Class K residences. The Class K homes that I inspected were affordable, well-built, and safe and showed the pride of ownership. The Class K ordinance is part of the fabric that makes our county such a special place.

I have 27 years’ experience working in building departments, including 14 years as a building official. It has been my experience, existing ordinances are modified out of a community need or because of politics. In this case, based on my conversations with county staff, the reason for the proposed changes appears to be politics. Staff has stated to me “If it isn’t broke, why fix it?” There doesn’t appear to be a driving need to change Class K. The question I ask is why is the Board of Supervisors attempting to change the Class K ordinance? If the proposed changes are because of politics, was there a sudden groundswell of requests from the citizens and stakeholders to change Class K? Were there any documented incidents of hazard to the life and safety of those that live in Class K residences? Or are the proposed changes brought about because of the incessant requests from a single source? Please don’t change a time proven valuable tool for owner builders and affordable housing because of a single loud and strident voice.

As a retired inspector and building official and now a code consultant, I am in the unique position to see both sides of this issue. If the Board decides to adopt some or all of the proposed changes, I offer the following suggested alternatives which I believe will have the same practical effect as the proposed changes.

• One acre minimum parcel size for a Class K residence. Support. 

• Class K residences and applicable structures will have to comply with the State Fire Marshal’s Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) ignition resistant construction requirements. Support. A recent county counsel opinion memo makes it clear that the WUI requirements are mandatory for all residences, Class K or California Building Code structures. 

• A minimum of three inspections (foundation, rough in and final) for a Class K residence. Support. The potentially hazardous components of any residential construction project are the plumbing, electrical and heating installations. The proper time to look at these installations is at the “rough in” inspection before insulation and sheetrock are installed. 

• Limit the size of Class K residences to 2,000 sq. ft. in area with a maximum 800 square feet addition(s). Oppose. What difference does it make if someone wants to build a large home under Class K? 

• A concrete perimeter foundation or engineered foundation for Class K residences and two story accessory buildings. Oppose with a suggested alternative. Class K Ordinance section 18.23.330 states that “Pier Foundations, stone masonry footings and foundations, pressure treated lumber, poles, or equivalent foundation materials or designs may be used, provided that the bearing is sufficient for the purpose intended”. Requiring a perimeter concrete foundation will add at least $15,000 to the cost of a modest Class K home. Have there been any documented incidents where an existing Class K house foundation has failed? I am not aware of any. I respectfully suggest that a concrete perimeter foundation only be required on two-story Class K residences and for any residence built on slopes greater than 5:1 

• Fire sprinklers mandatory for Class K residences. Oppose with suggested alternative. The cost of installation of a fire sprinkler system for an owner built single family residence can be up to $10 - $15 per square foot. This cost is increased if the residence water supply is from a spring or if the home is off grid. Fire sprinklers are not designed to put out a fire, only to slow it down so the occupant can exit the building. I suggest that if the Board requires fire sprinklers they only be required where the home is energized by a commercial power source (PG&E or Sonoma Clean Power) and the water source is a well or community water system. For off grid homes and/or those homes that use spring water as a water source; the suggested alternative is to require that the interior walls and ceilings be covered with a minimum of ½ inch gypsum wallboard, an exterior door or emergency egress window per California Residential Code sections R310.2.1 and 310.2.2 is installed in all rooms except kitchens and bathrooms and all interior doors be solid core or 20 minute fire rated. 

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me.


Scott Ward, CBO


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Letter To The Editor:

Whose idea was it to honor George Washington and Abe Lincoln by lumping all the presidents together on one day (February 19, 2018) implying a kind of affable equality while denying the true contributions of two men who sacrificed greatly to "save" our country's constitutional government. They were not just politicians.

George Washington could have been king. He was ready to walk away from leadership to his farm after the Revolutionary War, but he answered the urgings of his grateful countrymen to become our first president.

Who hasn't been moved by the terrible personal and divisive government challenges that befell Abraham Lincoln, the sacrifices he made culminating in his assassination?

Recently I heard on the radio that some children do not know GW (not Bush) was our country’s first president.

We need these early presidents to stand apart in order to measure the actions of contemporary presidents against standards set by these heroes of history, and their tremendous impact on the world. What country doesn't honor its founding fathers?

The "Presidents' Day," by including the past decades of "deplorable" political rule provides cover to those who have inherited the role but not the character of these first worthy leaders, thus diminishing their due influence on our country’s history.

Do we care about this propaganda ploy enough to make it an issue? I hope so.

Susan Wertheimer


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On August 7, 1978, I was born in Ukiah but raised in Hopland, California. I have four other brothers. I'm the second to the oldest. No sisters that I know of. My father and mother were both born in Mexico in the state of Michoacan and ended up here in Ukiah. Both families are big. My parents are well known in the community. All my life my dad would have us work for what we have in the fields in a beautiful place off Highway 175 in Hopland, a winery known at the time as McDowell Valley Vineyards.

The owners and the family are the most loving people who personally I've ever met. They always said to me to "take care and respect your mom and dad because we love them."

I will never forget those words Richard and Karen Keehn would at times say to me.

It's funny, since I've been a child until now I've always felt something was different with me out of everyone of my other brothers. My brothers and I attended Hopland school. My mother always volunteered for their Cinco de Mayo celebration by making all the Mexican food to raise money for our school. As I moved on with my education into Pomolita school, I transitioned into things that I now think I would never have become.

My older brother was jumped into a local gang from Ukiah when he was a freshman in high school. Mind you, I was in the eighth grade at the time and still in Pomolita. During my attendance in school I picked up friends who were "wannabes" including myself and with that I was introduced to marijuana and going out after school. I was introduced to methamphetamine as well. Once I reached high school, for my freshman year my older brother Hector took me under his wing. Throughout that time at high school I got good at selling methamphetamine and most of my customers were women and athletes.

My junior year was very interesting. I was still hanging out with my brother and his gangster friends. I always looked up to my older brother and I never got to tell him this but one day I will when the time is right.

Getting back to where I'm dealing with my story.

I always admired Hector in many ways. So I followed his footsteps by joining a gang myself. But there is a twist in the story. I was partying with local friends from our small town of Hopland one night with a good friend who I will just name “Lupe.” We were at the party that night with HMW at the pear orchards. This is where we both were asked to join the clique. So they jumped Lupe first. I was next and I will say that there wasn't anything fun or glamorous about it. I ended up with a steak over the side of my face after that party in Ukiah. The beauty of that night was that that's the first time I had intercourse with girls. That's where I thought in my head I was the s___!

By this time I was a sophomore. I was the first of my brothers to get my driver’s license and own my first vehicle. Instead of taking the bus, now I was driving to school and taking my two other brothers Hector and Marcos.

At this time my best friend Lupe was a senior and about to graduate. I remember that he and I were both going into the Marines. When that year came, I was a senior and Lupe was already in the Marines. So my senior year my big brother Hector was gone and my best friend Lupe was in the Marines. Now I was looking after my little brother Marcos. During that senior year in school I had the green light in jumping a few recruits into HTL which I did at school.

(To be continued.)

Ramiro Gonzalez Jr., A#14929
Mendocino County Jail
951 Low Gap Road
Ukiah CA 95482

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Letter to the Editor:

OK, after all his weekly tirades, I finally get it. Mr. Philbrick is one bone-ignorant, wood-knot stubborn and Jill-Poke twisted ex-gyppo logger so sick of licking his paws on his Pa’s woodlot in the sticks that he now has nightmares about drug-crazed Mexican hippie vato gangsters sneaking onto his property and releasing Spotted Owls: voracious flying rats with spots to perch on his windowsills and torment him with memories of the Boom Times during the Great Timber Liquidation Sale—rape and run clearcutting advertised as “sustained yield”—and how these flying rats had allowed themselves to be the willing tools of the environmentalist’s conspiracy to delegate big tree lumberjacks to the trash compacter of history, their spiked boots now hanging by their laces looped over a nail pounded into a weathered barn wall between the ox yoke and the bullwhip.

During the Logging Boom I worked for a handful of gyppos and the honest ones paid on time and their checks didn’t bounce. But never did meet any who were angels with dirty fingernails. Still I don’t think even the worst of them were more crooked than the timber pirates or even their land surveyors, timber cruisers, log scalers, accountants, lawyers, lobbyists and hip pocket politicians (“Conservatives” in Double Speak) who, once bought, stay bought. Not to mention the aw-shucks good old boy Madison Ave. fashion models whose life purpose is putting lipstick on hogs.

Philbrick’s tirade of 2/7 was against the strawmen inhabiting his fevered imagination (Democrats as Communists? The children of immigrants as enemies?). Ain’t like he’s Don Quixote tilting at windmills, either. He’s more like the Don’s loyal squire Sancho (“fatso”’) Panza trying to hump 50-foot of bull line up a canyonside. Sancho can huff and puff all he wants, but he ain’t getting anywhere except out of breath, soaking wet and knock-kneed.

Since nobody but Rooskies, Neo-Nazis, gangsters, Southern Redeemers, country bumpkins, international observers, rubberneckers, cynics, scrooges, standup comics, federal and state prosecutors and rank suckers still listen to anything the Trumpites say, nobody’s going to listen to your sounds and furies, Mr. Philbrick. So save your breath. Enjoy your retirement. Thank your lucky stars you won’t be born again.

Suggested reading: A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn. Excellent way to find out what real American Patriotism has sounded like these last couple hundred years. A First Generation American, during WW2 the late Professor Zinn was a bombardier who flew combat missions over the European Theater.

B. Patterson

Prineville, Oregon

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In San Ramon the flag criminals are treated like saints. The Board of Directors of the high school decided not to raise the flag or play the national anthem at school events, major events. The student body wanted the flag up and the national anthem but the rotten, liberal board of directors would not let them put the flag up or play the national anthem. San Ramon High School.

Political correctness is worse than Isis, worse than cancer, diabetes or heart disease. Convicts and killers and mass killers -- when there is no doubt about the guilt, the perpetrator should be hung or shot the same day and cremated or put out in the field for the buzzards not sent to jail for 20 or 30 years and and make the taxpayer pay for sex changes, overnight stays  with their girlfriends, TV, medical — they are treated better than the average citizen. And way better than people down in our slums or the homeless people. They have more rights than the average citizen thanks to political correctness.

The way Kim Jong Un Moonbeam Jerry Brown treats people on death row is making this country into a joke. Thanks to the rotten anti-American liberals they can't say killer to describe people who have committed a terrible crime. They have to say accused or alleged on the news. California is now a joke with the political correctness of the Democrats, and we are going to get another one just as bad as Kim Jong Un Brown. It's terrible. I can't believe it.

Anybody who kills my grandsons or granddaughters or anyone close to me, on my mother's grave I will find that person somehow and cut his throat. If you can't say that the man who kills right in front of you is a killer instead of alleged are accused — what is going on? This country is on its way down.

And then you have San Francisco. The NBC Investigative Team found it the dirtiest city in the country, and you know it's the home town of Gavin Newsom, Nancy Pelosi and Dianne Feinstein!

God bless Donald Trump.

Jerry Philbrick


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KZYX: Here's a ten-point plan:

1. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) should immediately demand the resignations of the current Board of Directors. The CPB should also immediately terminate the current GM and his salaried cronies...the other paid staff at the station.

2. The CPB should hold new elections that it oversees. The newly elected Board should hire new staff, starting with the GM.

3. The new Board should strongly consider adopting a new business model, a la KMUD, that mandates real inclusiveness and ensures the integrity of public representation in a truly "public radio station".

4. The new Board should review all by-laws, policies and procedures, and their enforcement.

5. Old programmers should be termed out, if they have have hosted shows for ten years or more. Again, no cronyism.

6. Past IRS Form 990s from the last ten years should be reviewed for accuracy, truthfulness, and completeness.

7. The new Board should order a complete audit of of the station's financials, especially the inconsistencies among the station's balance sheets, income statements, budgets, tax returns, and so-called "audits".

8. The new Board should order a review of the banking relationship with the Mendocino Savings Bank.

9. The new Board should recruit a new Program Advisory Committee and Community Advisory Board that is truly inclusive and truly representative of the public, and that is not stacked with the friends and family of former Board directors, staff,  and programmers...again, no cronyism. This effort should also be overseen by the CPB.

10. The FCC should be advised of these changes in governance and management.

As a footnote, if KZYX/KZYZ/Mendocino County Public Broadcasting can't be rescued and turned around, and if the Board of Directors, Program Advisory Committee, and Community Advisory Board cant be made to be truly inclusive, and if the station's management and finances can''t be made to be truly accountable and transparent, then the station's two FCC licenses, KZYX and KZYZ,  should be transferred to other public radio stations in the area, like KMUD or KMEC, or, in the alternative, a new Mendocino County-based public radio station should be incorporated and it should apply to the FCC for these licenses.

Public media is a privilege, not a right. And it is a sacred trust.

The CPB should immediately defund KZYX and KZYZ/Mendocino County Public Broadcasting. The FCC should consider suspending the station's licenses pending a full investigation. I speak as a former member of the Board of Directors and Board Treasurer of the station.

Current GM, Jeffery Parker, is as secretive and autocratic — and arrogant — as former GM, John Coate...who belongs in prison. Public dollars disappear through waste, fraud, and corruption. Conflicts of interest and self-dealing are rife at the station.

Respectfully submitted,

John Sakowicz
MCPB Board of Directors 2013-2016,
Board Treasurer, 2013-2014
Host and producer of "The Truth About Money"
on KZYX/KZYZ, 2008-2014
Candidate 1st District, Mendocino Board of Supervisors

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Trump lost a lawsuit in 2011 after he sued for libel, the author of the book "TrumpNation", Mr. Tim O'Brien. In an interview Mr. O'Brien states, "Trump ultimately had to admit 30 times that he had lied over the years about all sorts of stuff: the size of his real estate ownership, the price of his golf club memberships, the size of his organization, his wealth, speaking fees.. and about his business dealings with career criminals."

Mr. O'Brien continued, "Under oath Trump tries to avoid saying that he's lied in the past until he's presented with documentation proving otherwise."

So this case shows how Trump is a proven liar and loser! Trump's so stupid he thought he'd win, but ends up losing and being proven a liar!

Sadly, Trump’s supporters look like fools when they defend Trump’s ongoing circus of lies. The stupidest of them all is Mr. Philbrick, who writes in every week, "God Bless President Liar face" — like "God" would ever bless a known lying psychopathic sexual predator as Trump. Sure! As most smart AVA readers know, it's clearly Satan, who's "blessed" Trump..

Also newsworthy is the announcement, by a judge, that Trump has to pay out millions in fines for his fraudulent Trump University Scam. Remember that? Where Trump lied to kids and stole their money after promising nonexistent jobs. 100% true! WOW.

No other "president" in history has ever lost the election by three million votes, as well as been a proven serial liar who has to pay out millions in fines. Hugest Embarrassment Ever! Wow.

Satan obviously blesses Trump.

Best Regards,

Rob Mahon


One Response to Letters (Feb 21, 2018)

  1. Pat Kittle Reply

    February 21, 2018 at 2:23 pm

    Beautiful tribute, Lucille.

    Dogs are nature’s way of making up for humans.

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