Letters to the Editor
by AVA News Service, September 29, 2010
ABUSED & HAUNTED
Lifting the lid on Fort Bragg Elder abuse:
I have been the e-victim of mental elder abuse from slumlordies (M/F) three times in succession, all involving water problems and effective heating at the latter two homes. I had the water tested at our rental at 42243 Road 409 for parasites. That resulted in the purchase of bottled water for the next ten years at a conservative estimate of some $2000 which Grant Rudolph refused to pay. Rudolph telephoned to say he was raising our rent from $1610 per month to $2110 per month. He had been advised in writing that such brash actions could jeopardize the health of Dr. Hauser whose health was failing due to a weak heart.
We moved to the house, now haunted, at 24961 Ward Avenue where Dr. Hauser made his transition in August of 2008. Shortly after his passing, the baseboard heater in the kitchen stopped working. This was followed by the toilet not flushing properly for the next six months. After several futile phone calls I finally sent a certified letter to Century 21 complaining about lack of kitchen heat and the plugged up toilet. This resulted in my eviction notice from Barbara Clark, 707-961-1111, with no explanation why she was evicting me. She had already been advised in writing about my hernia and she knew I was still mourning the loss of my life partner of 46 years.
My Youtube video — Singing Toilet Man — exposes this misdemeanor of deliberately causing mental anguish for a Senior and the lack of judgment kept the house vacant for the next two years.
The third strike against me was delivered by Andarin Arvola while I was hospitalized. In order to light the pilot light for her wall heater it was necessary to remove the heavy door and then lie flat on the floor to turn on the gas for five minutes and then light a match! I was reluctant to do this since I had a gas oven explode in my face when I was a child. When her pump in the gully would stop it was necessary for a hazardous descent to get it started again. She watered her horses that night so I couldn't always flush the toilet until the next morning and I could produce a warmer, stronger stream than I got from the shower.
I was paying the ridiculous rent of $1000 per month for her remodeled barn with cracks in the floor and windows which did not completely close and which allowed many spiders to invade my one-bedroom barn home. Arrivederci Arvola will be the final chapter of my biography, Taking Liberty With Justice For Schmoll if I live long enough to complete it. With all three houses none of the security deposits were returned.
I was transferred to Sherwood Oaks where call bells are ignored for 30 minutes or more and several residents scream for help day and night. Since sleep deprivation and stress are especially detrimental for diabetics, I am eager to find a suitable quiet rental at a reasonable rent and I'm willing to barter massage and Reiki as well. Once I'm settled in I want to find a job where my 40+ years of public relations experience and my sense of humor can be fully utilized.
Singing Toilet Man should confirm the latter.
FAIR TIME FOR GYPSIES
There was a noticeable omission in your County Fair Report in last week's issue.
There was no mention of the award -winning Gypsy Wagon complete with DJ Pete who got people dancing just like he did at Burning Man, in that very same Gypsy Wagon.
Just because Europe is trashing out the Gypsies, no need to bring this “cleansing” to Boonville.
Uncle Sam, passenger
BLEEP IS REALLY BLEEP
To the Editor:
A friend, author Gene Logsdon, recently wrote a book published by a major publisher: Holy Shit - Managing Manure to Save Mankind. In his blog, Gene lamented that Prairie Public Radio interviewed him and the Chronicle of Higher Education praised his latest book, in both cases carefully avoiding mentioning the title, which includes one of George Carlin's "seven dirty words you can never say on television" or on the radio or in major print media.
For example, a current bestseller is titled, Sh*t My Dad Says. Childishly, and hypocritically, we in America are shielded by our media from the most used, or second most used, word in the English language for fear of offending the three fundamentalist church ladies who still shudder at its mention.
The AVA may be the only newspaper in America where, in many more ways than one, shit really is shit. We shall see.
Dear Colonel Anderson:
(You're the only one I could think of to inflict this on; the only one I know who might even read it. I don't expect you'll publish it.)
For the past several years polls have reported that a substantial percentage of the American people believe that “the country is moving in the wrong direction.” I was pondering this datum recently and a graphic image flashed to mind.
Picture a spot in a pasture somewhere in the Midwest. A large, circular platform, say 40 feet in diameter. Five feet high. A huge sign identifies the platform as “where we are now.” Packed on this surface is a mass of recognizable media stars who believe their task is to indicate the direction the country should go. Many point to the right. Several point to the left. Others point in all the directions in between. Some point upwards (“return to the only true church!”). Others point down (“drill, baby, drill!”) The cameras, the lights, the mammoth trucks with their antennae, the worldwide feeds.
On their livingroom chairs and sofas, in their beds and corner bars and coffee shops, the American people watch this performance, or (a few) read about it. When the pollsters come around later, the people tell them: “Yes! Yes! That's what we need! To move in a different direction!” (Among themselves — not to the polltakers — they also murmur: “But don't anybody dare to take anything away from us that we have come to feel entitled to.” And, they add, but only to their most intimate family members and friends: “Especially, don't ask us to share anything we have with those people, i.e., the lower 40%, particularly blacks, browns, the unemployed, the homeless and such).” (As Lee Simon noted — AVA September 1, 2010 — they believe “those people” are the authors of their own misfortunes and don't deserve help.)
This is, of course, a very effective program for the production of obstruction and stasis, and — lo! — Washington is exhibiting precisely those characteristics! The country being — still — a democracy, to get elected or reelected, or to find work on the staff of one who'll get elected or reelected, it is necessary to present oneself as reflecting the people's will. Some observers note this and bewail the lack of courageous leadership on the part of those elected. They most egregiously miss the point. People will only be led in the direction they most want to go. Those who persist in attempting to chart a determinedly specific course rather than the present headless heading, set themselves up for a very rough time, will likely poll negatively, however “dynamic” their personality might seem to be as defined by the experts in such matters.
How, then, to get most of those fingers pointing in the same direction? The most ancient, tried and true method has been to go to war. Big war. One of this method's prime merits is that it accomplishes two crucial tasks at the same time: it submerges most of the divisive concerns of the majority of citizens into patriotic loyalty to the righteous cause: and it preserves the status quo of power and wealth without change. (Do the bulk of the American people really support how power and wealth are sorted out in this country? Yep. If they didn't, it wouldn't be the way it is.)
So — as an alternative to the present drift and disarray which, given the present economic situation, could well lead to disruptive internal strife in our nation, look for the war drums to begin their beat. Of course, war can't “lead us in a new direction,” but, then again — what a relief! Thinking will be set aside as unpatriotic for the duration!
Dear Mr. Editor,
I have composed the following which I dedicate to all the souls who have ever been affected by San Quentin State Prison both inside and outside of these walls.
I am fading away, slowly but surely, like the sailor who watches his home shore gradually disappear. I watch my past recede. My old life still burns within me but more and more it is reduced to the ashes of memory.
A reasonable proposal: all right thinking Americans are against the building of a mosque near Ground Zero in New York. Unfortunately, it is totally legal according to the United States Constitution. It is clear that we have to change the Constitution. The founding fathers could not foresee the problems we face today.
Here's my plan: 1. We have to get rid of the separation of church and state. 2. We have to establish a branch of the FBI (the department of heretical thought) to form a massive databank on the belief structure of all religious institutions and their followers. 3. We need to establish a new presidential cabinet position (the chief inquisitor) to direct reeducation and punishment programs.
We could establish re-education can in the desert, modeled after the prisons of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
To save time we could make use of enhanced interrogation techniques.
All schoolchildren should be required to take semi-annual tests on their religious beliefs. Teachers should be rated on the test results.
These programs should be funded by asset forfeiture, not taxpayer dollars. Surplus money should be used to pay down the national debt.
I do, however, foresee some minor glitches when a new president takes office. I suspect that Bush and Obama would pick chief inquisitors with differing priority lists. But, this is not a major problem. We need to take action now.
L.H. (I don't dare use my real initials. There are too many heretics out there.)
ACCOUNTABILITY & COMPETITION
Bailouts are a very disruptive occurrence in our financial system. Businesses fail for many reasons, from personnel to overhead to too many of that kind of business and other things. Harsh as it is, it keeps the economy in balance. Those old familiar words of mine, accountability and competition.
Just imagine when the diesel locomotive came out and put the steam locomotive companies out of demand. But if our great fathers in Washington had bailed out the steam locomotive companies to keep men working and save the economy, by now we could cover one of our small states with steam locomotives. One of Washington's reasons would be that every once in a while a museum wants a steam locomotive.
As ridiculous as the last statement was, that's exactly what's happening in all our governments. Two years ago when Washington's experts bailed out the banks and car companies they said it was what saved the country — or did it just prolong the downturn? It's just their word against mine. The only thing is that there are still millions of people out of work years later.
Secrecy is probably the one biggest reasons for that familiar phrase “save our schools,” or our fire department, or a dozen other government entities. None of those ever put out financial statements or statements us peons can understand until they have created a crisis. The real oversight board is supposed to be the Board of Directors or city council or supervisors etc. That's what these are all created for — to keep that entity solvent. They don't run that entity, but if the manager or head person is not capable of running it, their duty is to replace him or her. That board or council should really be held accountable. They should be easily brought to court if they fail. Easily means fast and just, with an exact time of trial. A petition signed by a certain number of people should bring it to court. If the board or council loses they should pay it out of their personal funds, not by the government entity they represent.
Secrecy and a non-accountable city council caused the horrendous events in the city of Bell which I am sure everyone has heard about. What happened in Bell is very common, only the size of Bell's fiasco is amazing. Secrecy and lack of accountability is the villain. I am going to draft up a possible accountability law to give to our representatives in Sacramento to pass a bill to this effect and will give a copy to this paper.
THE LIBERAL LADY
This is mostly for my conservative friends. Both candidates in the 5th District race for supervisor are liberal. Their positions on issues are pretty much the same. So why vote for the liberal lady, Wendy Roberts? Why vote at all? Because the only important consideration in the supervisor race is the ability of a potential supervisor to effectively engage on the issue of our broken county budget. And Wendy Roberts is the only candidate willing and equipped to do this. Political issues, other than the budget, are irrelevant.
If you had a chance to read both candidates’ critiques on the Supervisor’s recent garbage decision, it was clear the lady had done her homework. The guy had not. I did not entirely agree with Wendy, but she knew what she was talking about and discussed the issue beyond ideological soundbites, which is what we got from the guy.
Unfortunately, for too long, we have had too many County supervisors who are only in office to keep their seats warm and collect a check. They take direction from County staff and their supporters. It is a great way to make a living, but it is also why, today, we are broke. If the guy gets elected, expect a seat warmer collecting his check. If Wendy gets elected, expect someone who will think for herself, do her homework, and be engaged. So vote for the liberal lady, Wendy Roberts. It is important.
George A. Hollister
So PG&E applies to the Public Utilities Commission for an increase in rates for a specific project, then decides to spend the funds on something else. It waits until after the devastating San Bruno explosion to decide its gas mains need inspection.
This is not the picture of a well-regulated “public utility.” It is a picture of a “profits first,” poorly regulated utility monopoly.
Many essential services, such as water and sewers, are owned as true public utilities. There is no profit motive for the East Bay Municipal Utilities District, for example. There are no executive bonuses based on short-term rise in stock prices, no stock options and no multi-million-dollar pay packages for executives, as at PG&E. With a monopoly on two needed products — gas and electricity — there is little incentive for PG&E to do any long-term safety planning.
The time has come for the cities and counties it serves to nationalize PG&E. Yes, it may cost a bit in the short run, but long-term bonds can cover this, as they do for EBMUD and sewer districts. Maybe then we will finally get safety over profits, and the horror of San Bruno won't be repeated.
THE GOERING PRINCIPLE
To the Editor,
It is through fear that we are governed.
Mr. Arthur Eck of Willits wrote a letter to the Ukiah Daily Journal announcing that it is “Time to Take Action Against Radical Islam.” I agree with his motivation in writing – for the fear that he feels always sells. Given the opportunity, people will always act in a way that seemingly protects them from that which they fear.
Hermann Goering, the infamous Nazi leader explained it quite clearly at his Nirenberg trial: "Naturally the common people don't want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for a lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.”
Mr. Van Eck seems to have fully absorbed our Mainstream Media's brainwash and wants to take action now against Radical Islamic Extremism. He fears that if they are allowed to rule the world, Islam would “take from everyone the freedom to make personal choices. You would be forced to live by the Koran and Sunna teachings which cover every detail of living, including even how to sneeze! Failure to adhere carries brutal physical punishment including beheading.”
I am sorry that Mr. Eck did not use his freedom to read up a bit about Islam and the teachings of the Koran, for what he says is utter nonsense intended merely to activate his fear mechanisms and restrict his capacity for critical thinking..
The fundamentalist Islamic movement is a small and narrow creed denounced and ignored by the vast majority of Moslems. The likelihood of their accumulating sufficient recruits and the massive armaments needed for an attack upon America is not considered by Mr. Eck, but he does fear beheading under an Islam takeover and this is quite enough to get him aroused. He is apparently unaware that beheading has been banned in all but one or two of the 46 predominantly Moslems countries in the world for longer than hanging has banned in modern Western countries. If he had ever experienced the peaceful, tolerant and hospitable nature of most Moslems, he would quickly dismiss the fear-driven diatribes he hears on Fox and other television networks and in our newspapers. He whips up further anxiety by listing 5,815 American murdered in bombings of Marine barracks, an airline explosion, embassy attacks and the 9/11 nightmare. He makes no effort to balance this against the hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqi and Afghani civilians killed during our attacks upon their countries nor to wonder at the anger they hold for us.
He proposes a most simple and clear program to prevent our losing our heads and much more in the event of an invasion of our Homeland by Radical Islamic Extremists. We should just shutdown all the mosques, madrasahs and Islamic centers where killing is taught and arrest those who preach there.
I am unclear how he would go about this in those 46 foreign countries that have Moslem populations but he hopes for cooperation from other “free societies.” Would he send an invasion force to each of these countries? In the interim, he suggests we write letters recommending this simple plan to our representatives in Washington. I think he might also suggest in his letters that we consider withdrawal of our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan. Maybe if we stopped bombing these people they would forget about attacking us.
I have agonized over my last letter to the AVA (September 22, 2010). While I did not write the poem, I sent it in. What was I thinking?! How could I have read it and believed it was okay? I reacted without much thought, and for that, I am sorry.
Susie de Castro
LOOKING AHEAD IN THE 3RD
Be Prepared: There Are Really Some Hard Times Ahead
I like John Pinches. He's a good ol' boy in the best sense of the term. He's a gentleman, he's open, seeks fairness, and makes himself accessible to his constituents. He truly cares about our County.
But I don't think he understands how different our future is going to be from what we've known. And if we love our families and the land around us, it is important to see and understand the changes coming down the pike and be ready to deal with them—with protocols, programs, and policies (the Three P's) that are not only appropriate and effective, but strategic or long-range.
Holly Madrigal has been searching for and analyzing the Three P's for a while now. She knows the old ones don't embrace and cannot handle the hard times ahead. And no matter what your political persuasion, the hard times ahead are going to affect us all—that is, unless you're one of the super-wealthy.
Conservative/liberal, New Age/Good Old Days, male/female, old/young, rightwing/leftwing—these categories no longer apply. Certainly not here in Mendocino county, and probably nowhere for that matter. Partisan politics are irrelevant now. The powers-that-be try to divide us from ourselves in order to set us against each other and thus "conquer" us.
Pinches and Madrigal are friends, respect each other, and wish each other well. But they are not equally attuned to the hard times a-coming. In my opinion, Pinches believes the old ways can handle them. Madrigal knows they cannot.
If you believe that talking about the difference and enormity of the hard times ahead is futile or wrong-headed, vote for Pinches. If you believe, as I believe, that the times are indeed a-changing and new tools and mind-sets will be needed, vote for Madrigal.
It's up to us.
BOTTLE IT, SELL IT AT PINOT FEST
Give Leaf Juice A Chance — This is to follow up with info on Joy Greenfield's healing experience with cannabis leaf juice, reported in the AVA last week. She had a massive cleansing of her eyes and sinuses from a single swallow of pure concentrated high-CBD Indica leaf juice.
You can also chew the leaves fresh off the plant, even if you spit out the bitter bulk after getting the value of the juice. It has strings like celery and may be hard for some to digest.
The hand-crank plastic wheat grass juicer I used can be ordered online for $44.95 plus S&H. Check out www.heathyjuicer.com and firstname.lastname@example.org at 1-877-LEXEN-11.
It is very lightweight, portable, easy to clean and does the job. A hand-crank juicer is considered preferable to an electric juicer in that it “crushes” and grinds rather than “shreds” vegetable matter, which destroys some enzymes in the process.
To those who asked about “scientific research papers to back up medical claims” --Because of a near-prohibition on cannabis research, there are no studies that I know of backing up high-CBD leaf as a healing agent for glaucoma and related eye diseases (where a lowering of the pressure can cause blindness).
So that others may benefit, I am simply reporting my first hand experience with Joy and her joy at the positive results on her sinuses, eyesight and glaucoma condition with CBD-rich leaf juice.
I have always believed in cannabis leaf as a true medicine. I endured 10 arrests in 11 years, prosecutions in 5 counties, jail in 4, carrying pounds of “throwaway leaf” as my medicine, before the laws changed. Appreciation for CBD-rich leaf as a precious medicine in its own right is a long-time coming. It is a new understanding mainly among scientists and research minded cannabis doctors and patient-growers who are actively furthering research into CBD strains to satisfy a tsunami of patient demand.
In general, new findings in cannabis research shows startling benefits in relation to conditions like Altzheimer's and cancer. There is increasing evidence of positive CBD effects in calming pain symptoms and anti-inflammatory conditions like arthritis.
THC makes you high; CBD does not. There is a great demand from patients who want the medicine without the high so the switch is in process. At the very least, there should be a choice.
What qualified patient-growers are doing, since allowed under law, is neither criminal nor commercial. It is collective, conscious and compassionate, as the law intended.
PS The current issue of O'Shaughnessy's (the Doctors' Journal) has a front-page article on the CBD Project (as well as a great article on Louie Armstrong's close association with “gage”). It is sold at Down Home Foods and Albion Grocery for $6. Or you can receive it for $3 by snailmail from MMMAB PO Box 2555 Mendocino 95460. Dr William Courtney's website is current on the science — www.leavesofgrass.info. Dr Courtney has been focusing his research efforts on the neglected value of low psycho-activity CBD which concentrates in leaf rather than bud. He reports that 65% of his patients prefer getting the value of the medicine without the high. Kristen, his partner, was infertile, unable to bear children, until Dr Courtney's regimen of leaf juice healed her insides and they now have a one-year old healthy baby girl.
THE PARKING TICKETS
Working people frequently ask retired people what they do to make their days interesting. Well, for example, the other day my wife and I went into town and went into a shop. We were only in there for about 5 minutes. When we came out, there was a cop writing out a parking ticket. We went up to him and said, “Come on man, how about giving a senior citizen a break?” He ignored us and continued writing the ticket. I called him a Nazi turd. He glared at me and started writing another ticket for having worn tires. So my wife called him a sh__head. He finished the second ticket and put it on the windshield with the first. Then he started writing a third ticket. This went on for about 20 minutes. The more we abused him, the more tickets he wrote. Personally, we didn't care. We came into town by bus and saw that the car had a vote for Meg Whitman sticker.
We try to have a little fun each day now that we're retired. It's important at our age.
THANKS FROM KAR
To Our Community,
I want to give a huge, public thank you to the 23 volunteers, 22 Anderson Valley Wineries and members of the AV community for supporting the AV ElderHome's wine booth at this year’s Mendocino County Fair. Together we raised over $3,400, twice as much as last year, to be split between the ElderHome and the AV Senior Center. Our local wineries were very supportive and donated some of their best wines. I had the pleasure of visiting all of the wineries, and at each, small or large, there were local folks who care about our community and seniors. In addition to the successful fundraising, we had the pleasure of connecting with old and new friends. We shared our vision for elder care in the valley, and heard some wonderful ideas and perspectives. Many people commented on the comfy booth and the opportunity to sit a while and chat — and that says a lot about what we want to create for our elders. None of this could or can be possible without your involvement.
Together, step by step, we are achieving our mission of being able to keep our elders at home in the valley! We can’t do it without you,
FAIR LOOKS EASY, BUT…
Dear Jim, Cecilia, Fair Board and Fair Staff,
We wanted to give you all one million gold stars for the Fair this year. Despite the threat of rain you all just rolled everything out with confidence and we attenders just relaxed and enjoyed ourselves (kind of like kids). The grounds looked beautiful. You made the whole show look easy. We know how much planning is needed to produce just one event and the Fair is more like 100 events stitched seamlessly together. Once again the residents of this small valley and many families from other parts of Mendocino County had a chance to feel what it means to be part of an extended community. For those of us who live here we feel proud to live in a place that produces such a first class Fair. Great job and thank you so much.
Colleen Schenck, Donna Pierson-Pugh,
Lupita Guererro, Terry Ryder
Anderson Valley Community Action Coalition