Letters to the Editor

by AVA News Service, October 21, 2010

AMATEUR HOUR

Dear Editor,

I'm something of an amateur forensic accountant, and I am most certainly a very diligent citizen watchdog of Mendocino County finances. Most folks know me as an outspoken critic of our county's pension system.

Lately, however, I've been studying the campaign finance of candidates for the Board of Supervisors, particularly Wendy Roberts and Dan Hamburg in the 5th District.

It is widely known that Wendy Roberts is the recipient of monies from conservative, pro-development types, living outside of the 5th District. Fairly, or unfairly, she has been bitterly criticized for taking this money.

What is less widely known is the style and substance of Dan Hamburg's fundraising. After considerable research, I've concluded the following:

Dan's #1 contributor is his son, Kurt Hamburg, who is a developer busy carving up 58 pristine acres in Baja, Mexico. As founder and CEO of Baja Land Bargains, Kurt is selling lots to retirees and second-home owners for huge profits. One-acre lots in his Sea of Cortez Subdivision sell for $30,000. From a strictly enviornmental perspective, it's hard to see how this is not “development.”

Dan's #2 contributor is multimillionaire John Schaeffer, founder and president of Real Goods. Now don't get me wrong, John is a pretty cool guy. But he's a lot richer than most of us.

Because a lot of Dan's money is raised at fundraising events, we don't know a lot. Money from fundraising events is largely undocumented, and can be neatly laundered.

About 40 per cent of Dan's money comes from loans to his campaign. Loans are typically an area of great potential for abuse. Why? We don't know who is waiting in the wings to pay off these loans after the election.

It needs to be pointed out that the California Fair Political Practices Commission is currently asking Dan questions about his fundraising events. Again, the money has to be documented.

Finally, I want to be crystal clear: I make no endorsements. I wish both Wendy and Dan well.

Sincerely,

John Sakowicz

Ukiah

PEOPLE v. O’DONNELL

Editor,

It is no surprise that Christine O'Donnell is against masturbation as there is no obvious evidence that she has a vagina.

Carl Flach

Alameda

PS. Humans are to Animals as Alcohol is to Drugs.

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POONKINNEY v. PINCHES

Dear Editor

I was a member of a successful small neighborhood coalition formed to require an EIR on a rural rock quarry near Dos Rios. Since 1999 our members have attempted to work with John Pinches and have seen his attitudes and beliefs when it comes to the law, the environment and the squandering of our county’s precious tax dollars.

Anyone who has driven up the first mile of Poonkin­ney Road from Dos Rios knows that the steep blind turns make it impossible to see oncoming cars, let alone trucks, with no time to stop and no turn out. As this is the only way in and out for residents (25 families) we were literally fighting for our lives.

For 11 years, in and out of office, John Pinches actively supported his personal friend’s permit applica­tion to operate this quarry that would put an average of 120 two way truck trips a day on this single lane steep mountain road with blind curves and no room to pass.

John Pinches completely disregarded our concerns and he wrote letters, signed petitions, gave testimony and championed this quarry project knowing full well that it was putting our lives at risk, violating numerous laws, creating no jobs, and was costing the County thousands in road repairs and legal costs.

In 2005 The California State Court of Appeals ordered the County to shut down the quarry for obvious reasons and the County was ordered to pay thousands to our Coalition in legal fees. Three years later Supervisor Pinches spearheaded an even larger permit request for his friend in the same location with all the same prob­lems knowing full well that the Court would find the same violations again and again waste tax dollars. I guess he hoped we would just go away.

We did not go away. Early this year the Quarry per­mit request was quietly withdrawn in closed session of the Board of Supervisors. Again the County was ordered to pay our legal costs. The Supervisors never explained why it went away or mentioned the estimated $800 thou­sand tax dollars spent over 11 years on this clearly illegal and costly project. If Supervisor Pinches had listened honestly to our Coalition’s concerns in the first place and used common legal good sense all this expense would have been avoided.

With the Harris Quarry expansion soon be in the hands of a new Board of Supervisors we need new peo­ple who will follow the law and pay attention to the environment, rural residents concerns and the costs to all of us.

We have nothing against John Pinches as he seems to be nice enough, but we know from his record that we dare not put another County project in his hands. We can’t afford him. Please vote. It is time for a change.

Thank you

Bess Bair, Poonkinney Road Coalition

Dos Rios


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SIT IN, MENDO

Dear Editor,

Don’t be confused by green-washing, there’s a clear choice between Dan Hamburg and Wendy Roberts for 5th District Supervisor. Hamburg has a track record as an elected representative standing up over decades to those who would choose short-term profiteering while despoiling our environment and diminishing the sustain­ability of our local economy. In 1981, during his tenure as 2nd District supervisor, Hamburg led the opposition to annexing the “Lovers Lane” property in north Ukiah Valley when out-of-town developers sought approval to roll-out 1,100 houses over 15-foot deep ag-zoned soils. As our congressman, Hamburg demonstrated back-bone when he took on Maxxam/Pacific Lumber and authored the Headwaters Forest Act, a bill that both protected old-growth redwoods and guaranteed timber jobs well into the future.

Hamburg’s an informed, passionate spokesperson for protecting our local forests and coast. He has consis­tently advocated green business development by relo­calizing food-production via a bioregional, sustainable farm and food-processing industry. He is also a long-time supporter of the non-fossil fuel energy economy that is on the rise here on the north coast.

While civically active during her five years in the county, Roberts has never held public office and has no track record upon which we might discern her real-life positions on key issues facing our county. In listening to her during debates and a radio interview, she avoids taking stands. Roberts’ campaign-contribution reports reveal a cabal of right-wing, anti-regulation, big-devel­opment profiteers and hucksters from as far away as the Los Angeles-based California Real Estate PAC. What’s with that?

Among her contributors are Jared and Bonnie Carter ($450) who hosted a Roberts’ fundraiser at their home. Some may recall how Mr. Carter lobbied the Board of Supervisors over past decades on behalf of his various big-development and big-timber company clients. And how Carter served as Chief Legal Counsel for corporate-raider Charles Hurwitz of Maxxam during their decade-long blitzkrieg of old-growth redwoods, and the gutting of the employee pensions.

Don't sit this race out. Ask yourself why big real-estate brokers and developers predominate among Rob­erts’ supporters. There's much at stake for the 5th Dis­trict and Mendocino County.

Meca Wawona

5th District, west of Ukiah

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CONFUSION, CORRECTION, PRAISE

Bruce M:

Your rendition of the court proceedings of October 7, 2010 regarding Jaime Lerma was oh-so-wrong. Mr. Lerma is my client not Mr. Hallinan's. Mr. Hallinan rep­resents one of the co-defendants, Eugene Ray who was already out of custody on his OR when we appeared in court on 7th. (Actually, the alternate defender succes­fully argued for Eugene's release on Sept 30, before Mr. Hallinan was even hired.) My client was not released Sept. 30 on OR with Eugene and his son Jerimiah, because Judge LaCasse was not convinced that Jaime had sufficient ties to this community to insure his appearances in court. At that time, I protested that the owners and apparent responsibles for the marijuana enterprise could get out, while the hired laborer had to remain in custody or post bail. On the 7th, I was able to produce information establishing an address in Windsor and proof that my client has been in the area for at least eight years and made other court appearances in traffic court. It was I who sparred with the Deputy DA, who was Brian Newman, not Scott McMenomey.

Although I do respect Mr. Hallinan and look forward to working with him on this case, the laudatory com­ments you rained on him are mine.

Jan Cole Wilson, Esq

Ukiah

Bruce McEwen replies: Sorry about the confusion. Thanks for clearing this up. Like Judge LaCasse, I didn’t even know what the case was about — remember him saying, “Come on, guys; help me out here; is this a weed case?”? At least he had the file in front of him, whereas I was all at sea in a swarming tumult of lawyers coming and going in the crowded courtroom. At any rate, rest assured I’ve been thoroughly keelhauled by my editor for the mistake.

C NO EVIL

To the Editor:

A vote against Measure C, which, if passed would increase the sales tax by ½% to pay for county services, is not going to bring to justice any wrongdoers in con­nection with the county pension fund, as John Dickerson (YourPublicMoney.com) would have us believe.

A taxpayer lawsuit would, however, accomplish that.

Meanwhile, the county needs revenue to provide serv­ices.

The issues are separate. Don’t get confused.

Vote Yes on Measure C and encourage John Dicker­son to bring a taxpayer lawsuit. That way the county can have much-needed revenue and justice can be served.

Janie Sheppard

Ukiah


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HAMBURG: GOOD FOR BUSINESS

Editor,

Why I am voting for Dan Hamburg

I live in the 5th district and am highly interested in the outcome of this race. I spent 35 years in this county with various small businesses, some more successful than others. So I come from a background of a small business owner.

As I have watched the campaign move along, I have seen that Dan Hamburg is supported by many small business owners. He is also supported by many of the major entrepreneurs in our county that have had busi­nesses go national to some degree. Businesses that started from ideas only and became successful.

We now have a broken economy.

So what can we do here in Mendocino County?

Small business and startup businesses are the engine of our national and local economies. That is a fact.

So it follows that to repair Mendocino County’s econ­omy, we have to work to create a local economy that is more than entry level jobs. We need startup busi­nesses that can hire people.

We have to build an economy that can feed ourselves and make many of the things that we need. We need to support the coastal small businesses that exist. We need to use the talents and creativity in this county to build a strong local economy.

Dan Hamburg clearly understands these things.

We have a national and state economy in what I con­sider a depression — no matter what some fool econo­mist says — if there are not jobs for people, then an economy cannot happen.

Here is the real difference in the 5th District Supervisor race:

Looking for solid ideas about the economy from Rob­erts, nowhere can I find any job producing idea in Robert’s materials, except what seems to be a hope that the economy will get better. By itself, I guess. Roberts seems to agree that more jobs are needed, but her solu­tion is “We must not continue to hold proposed devel­opment and jobs hostage to outdated county planning documents” and wait for the economy to fix itself: “…to create a positive environment for job growth as the state’s economy recovers.”

I don’t believe we should wait for our economy to fix itself.

The real difference is that Hamburg has solid ideas about building an economy locally that will help make those jobs happen. Let me quote him:

“We will emphasize local economics by buying local and establishing stronger incentives for local con­tracting. We will promote food localization and boost our growing reputation as leaders in green technology.”

“We need to keep our dollars here, circulating in our local economy.”

“This applies to government spending as well. Cur­rently the County provides 5 percent preference for local contracting. We would like to see that raised to 10 per­cent — and it should include spending on food and energy. Contracts awarded to firms outside the County should require a statement on public record that the service is not available in-County.”

“Promote local food production using the market niches we have: organic, biodynamic and non GMO. Support our local farmers, so they can grow food and resources for Mendocino County: Grains, hops and meat, as well as winegrapes.”

These are solid creative ideas.

If Mendocino County consumers were to buy only 15% of their annual food budget on local food, another $20 million in local farm income would be realized.

Think about that. Couldn’t we use another $20 mil­lion in our economy?

I believe we have to work to fix our local economy, and not wait for the feds or the state to fix themselves. The federal government will bail out big banks and in­surance companies, but seems to be unable to help main street stop foreclosures.

The State of California can’t even get a budget together.

Let’s get a Board of Supervisors who can work together to move towards these job building ideas. There is nothing liberal or conservative about these ideas. It’s just common sense.

I believe Dan Hamburg is a Supervisor we need.

Michael Laybourn

Hopland

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SIMONITE

Dear Editor,

Either Lee Simon from Far 'N Away Farm, Virginia should be given a free subscription or you should offer him a space for a column. Every time I read one of his letters, I think, “That's what I think, but better written.”

Ashley Jones

Alameda

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CHINA SYNDROME II

Dear Bruce,

Who needs territory! In the past empires have always sought territory, for power and glory and resources. Not any more. This is not the past.

These days a nation that is building an empire (see China) has no need for territory, even if they have way too many people to feed (see China). Power and glory and resources are there to be had, not by war (see USA) but by conquest via trade (see China).

By regulating capital reserves, trade advantages, export/import balances, and foreign investments a nation can gain great power and glory and resources. The recent history of global wars is such that the winners get to support and rebuild the losers for decades. Not exactly a great long-term strategy.

Any future war between the US and China will be fought inside computers, not inside ships and planes and will not use ground troops. It is easier to destroy an economy than it is to conquer and destroy a country. Predatory trade policies are in. Don’t just watch your back, watch your wallet. We, the US, have been so busy watching our backs for terrorists and immigrants we have let our empire slip away with a few key strokes here, a few clicks there, coming from the Far East, a few programs everywhere.
Just as we have historically deluded ourselves that we are not genocidists (see native Americans) and that we are not fratracidists (see Civil War) and that we are not dehumanizers (see slavery) and that we are not greedy (see Wall Street), we are now deluding ourselves that our empire is still here.

Lee Simon

Far ‘n Away Farm, Virginia

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HELP FOR THE CONFUSED

Dear Editor.

For voters confused about the current ballot proposi­tions, there's help! The recommendations of 18 leading organizations, including five political parties, labor unions, Farm Bureau, Sierra Club, Chamber of Com­merce and League of Women Voters, can be viewed at the website ElectionInfo.org

Learning what a full range of respected groups rec­ommend helps citizens become more informed voters and the state to have better laws and government. Check out http://ElectionInfo.org/

Sharon Hansen

Albion

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TOM’S NEW STRIKE FORCE

Editor,

Willits News, front page, 10/13/10: “Ranger Rhetoric to the rescue” — citing the success of a three county pot strike force in the Sierras called “Operation Trident,” Mendo County Sheriff Tom Allman will assemble a six county pot strike force in the Mendocino National Forest called “Operation Sextant” giving a whole new spin on camping. Below the fold, Congressman Thompson, aka “Mickey T,” says he's encouraged by recent statistics showing an improvement in the economy. Why the euphoria? Yacht and premium wine sales are up.

Don Morris

Willits

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THE ANSWER IS EYSTER

Dear Editor,

Eyster for District Attorney.

I have been incarcerated here in the Mendocino County Jail for nine months now. During this time the District Attorney's Office has continually put off court appearances. They have served search warrants on my house and person only to come up with negative results. They have examined my computer and other things belonging to me, again with negative results. Their case against me is at best questionable so they just keep put­ting my trial off for a later date which in my case is now January 11, 2011.

I have never been convicted of any offense, so I have absolutely no criminal record. During my stay here I've seen people being locked up for nothing while the Dis­trict Attorney's Office continues to strong-arm these people into plea deals or sometimes after they have made good people lose good jobs, houses and everything else, and end up dropping charges altogether after the damage is done.

We need a competent District Attorney who will look at all cases and charge only if there is real evidence to actually get a conviction. Doing so would ease over­crowded jails, give our court systems some relief from wasted time and energy and most of all it would keep good people from losing their lives.

David Eyster I believe is the answer. I think he will put crucial time into examining cases and again only charge those which can actually win a conviction. We need a leader who will put time and effort into bettering their department and stopping all the witch hunts.

Eyster for District Attorney in November.

Respectfully,

Stephen J. Henry

Ukiah

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HANDS OFF MY POST OFFICE

Editor,

Your readers should be made aware of recent legisla­tion introduced in the United States Senate that, if enacted, would allow the US Postal Service to close and consolidate thousands of small post offices across America including right here in Mendocino County.

While the proposed legislation has other very sound ideas for strengthening the Postal Service, one provision is of concern. Senate bill S. 3831 would eliminate the long-standing restriction against closing a post office solely for economic reasons as well as allowing postal headquarters in Washington DC to no longer consider how such a closing would affect the community.

The Postal Service is facing tough financial chal­lenges (who isn't?), but any massive closing of small post offices is NOT the answer. According to the Postal Regulatory Commission, even if all small and rural post offices were closed it would save less than 1% of the Postal Service's operating budget.

If you agree that the Postal Service should look to other ways to save money — like reducing its top-heavy management structure — instead of cutting services to rural and small-town America, contact our Senators and Housemember and tell them: “Hands off my post office.”

Jo Ann Aronson, retired postmaster

Yorkville

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BLEEPING CONVERSATION

Editor,

A political staffer's casual use of the word “whore” (“Brown's phone flub may give Whitman an opening,” SF Chronicle, October 9) calls attention to the increased levels of bleepable words in current social conversation.

While the Whitman camp's reaction was over­wrought and I'm not so sure the word is profane, it's not a bad thing that notice was taken. It's becoming rare to sit down in a café, stand in a market line, or enjoy a social gathering without being assaulted by various terms formerly confined to certain rough environments.

Some say that we shouldn't care about those words, that objecting is prudish. But words have power to evoke imagery and emotion to either eliminate discourse or pollute the social environment.

To be sure, the provoking pugnacity of dirty words can at times add color or force to selected messages. That's lost when the words become common. The saying, “You get what you put up with” applies. The more we put up with profanity, the more likely we are to bear it everywhere — in media, at dinner tables and business meetings and, of course, from children.

For the most part, profanity pollutes our social envi­ronment, leaving little room for respect, civility and kindness.

Maureen Merrill

Windsor

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NOBODY’S PERFECT

Editor:

I am upset with you. Normally I welcome and often follow your “how to vote” recommendations. Your rec­ommendations for proposition 20 — 27 are right on. All of them put on the ballot by special-interest groups with no concern for the general welfare. All of them seek political or economic or both benefits for themselves.

Your stance on Proposition 19, the marijuana initia­tive, is so wrong, I cannot let it pass without comment.

1. The laws against marijuana have always been a weapon of the ruling classes versus the poor. This has been true since their inception.

2. The laws against marijuana are used as a weapon against brownish people (so-called blacks and Hispan­ics_.

3. Currently state and federal laws are in conflict. This won't change but it will further protect the true “mom-and-pop” non-commercial growers and users from local harassment.

4. Large-scale interests affect every aspect of life in America. Substituting Archer Daniels Midland and the tobacco and pharmaceutical companies for the prison industry, the lawyer groups, the police (local) would be a vast improvement.

5. How many hundreds of thousands of people, almost all poor and the vast majority people of color would not go to jail and/or prison? How much induced fear would be avoided?

6. Our governor just made pot an infraction I am told. So what? It will still be used as a class weapon and a racist tool. Pointing this out to you, Bruce, seems almost surreal.

The only point in your “vote no” paragraph that as ANY validity is the economic “hit” Mendocino County will take should Proposition 19 pass. It is also true how­ever that the high end, boutique pot grown here will always have a market regardless of the actions of large corporations who cannot enter the industry since it will still be a federal offense.

In fact, I expect Proposition 19 to lose, defeated by the coalition of dope growers and prison guards aided by the “bad” cops, the lawyers, the judges, the dispensaries, all of whom have a vested economic interest in “business as usual.”

And as long as I'm frothing at the mouth, how could anyone vote for Lintott? She has proven herself to be erratic, unjust and incompetent. Three successive grand juries have asked for justice vis-a-vis Smith and Colfax's expense reports — she refuses to enforce that law. Was she not the prosecutor for the Willits case where an adult having sexual relations with a minor whom he was sup­posed to be supervising basically walked? And the Denoyer animal abuse case?

California voters voted to put Reagan in the White House twice after his pathetic governorship, totally class based. The have-nots voted against their own interest to send him to Washington. Then they voted down single-payer healthcare, making certain that the insurance industry could continue making 20% or more on healthcare. That vote kills the prospects of single-payer health care in the United States and now we can do it again with marijuana.

The federal and state governments subsidize the tobacco and alcohol industries in both direct and indirect ways. State and federal laws differ as do laws in different parts of a single state.

Both alcohol and tobacco kill thousands of people every year.

The only reason to vote no on Prop 19 is to ensure that California continue to lead the nation in servitude to the ruling monied class unless of course you are one of the growers, trimmers, prison guards, middlemen, law­yers who are acting in the American tradition of greed, selfishness and disregard of social justice.

Peter Lit

Elk

PS. Coming soon: Why I am voting for Wendy Roberts.

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DAN'S MEDICINE

Dear Editor:

Recent stories in the press make clear that Dan Ham­burg uses and grows marijuana. One press story even had a picture of his medical marijuana authorization.

My question is, what is his medical condition that authorizes his marijuana use? And is that a condition that can or will affect his ability to perform the very stressful job of supervisor in the very troubling times that face this county? I think he should make available to the pub­lic his medical records that will answer this question. No one has to divulge their medical records. But no one has a right to run for public office without subjecting them­selves to relevant inquiry into their qualifications for the job they seek.

Hamburg appears to be in good physical condition. I would think he would want to dispel any suggestion that he uses marijuana for relief from a mental or emotional condition that might be exacerbated by the stress he will confront in dealing with the severe financial conditions faced by this county.

Tim McCann

Ukiah

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ALL THE LUXURIES OF HOME

Special to the AVA:

Low Gap Delights — the Ukiah Hilton:

Wonderful free food, free clothes, free unlimited hot showers, private room, free phone service, all the drugs I need — free — opiates, valium, high blood pressure pills, sexy and gentle nurses, a $200,000 a year “shrink” at my service, superlative staff available at my fingertips, exercise yard, wonderful inmates (a captive audience), color TV, college-level classes, Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous with visiting hours “to suit,” weight-loss program (four years ago we weighed in at 187 pounds, now we're down to 149 pounds), no fire water, no hot smoke in my lungs, three movies a week, an excellent library, board games, card games, art sup­plies, free stamps, free love, free drugs…

Why would anybody not love Tom Allman's Poor Man's Health Spa?

Alan “Captain Fathom” Graham

Ukiah/Albion


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RELIGIOUS ROYALTY

Editor:

Archbishop Maki wrote back promptly and courte­ously addressing me as “gentle scholar,” despite my having addressed him as Your Eminence (suggesting mere cardinalhood), when in fact he is either a Your Excellency or a Your Grace depending on whose eti­quette book you consult. (Your Holiness is reserved for the Pope Himself, and it trumps all except possibly, in my hometown anyway, Your San Francisco Giants.

Mary “Spook” Roach

Fort Bragg

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NO MANSONITE

Dear Editor:

The Charles Manson legacy.

Charles Manson is housed in the Corcoran State prison protective housing units for his sole protection. He spends his days thinking of his past crimes going back to 1969. He plays guitar and thinks about all the victims who haunt him at night in his cell that is also haunted from what he says. He walks around the shower area trolling for whatever and says there is nothing wrong with being homosexual or thinking about some big bodybuilder in prison. Good old Charlie was recently found to have his shower bath robe open while another prisoner was in his cell named Pogo the Clown. What is this all about? I guess after 40 years, Manson finally found a lover.

Name withheld

Corcoran

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MY LAST DRINK

Editor,

I'm not a masochist but I am a glutton for boozy fun. I paroled out of San Quentin's H-unit on a July Saturday and got busted for drunk in public before I was to see my parole officer on Monday. I have a 5-b no alcohol deal as a condition of my parole so I was sent back to San Quentin for a 45 day violation. I got out on the last Saturday in August and got arrested for the same thing that very night and went back to San Quentin and promised to do a six-month program and get out a few Saturdays later. That night I caught the “seed of hate” metal show in Ukiah and met punk legend Ricky Dees, singer for Verbal Abuse. But I managed to get picked up once again for drinking the next day. Now I'm back in San Quentin's human warehouse waiting for the powers that be to hash out my fate. Most likely it will be this three months in custody drug treatment program they have for fellows especially like me.

Whatever happens, I have had my last drink. Maybe forever, but definitely until I get off of parole. They have my number and I'm pretty sure they are laying in wait. So if anybody out there would like to penpal with me please do so at

Wayne Campbell, AA4612,

San Quentin State Prison,

San Quentin, CA 94974.

PS. Hey, Mendoland. Too Tall and friends send theirs! If this is printed could you please send a copy to me because Too Tall is leaving on Wednesday for Susanville. If not, thanks anyways. These violations are stupid and such a waste of time and money only for drinking and not even wasted status either. There are a lot of people here for similar weak reasons, but it comes with the number. They are planning to kill a real piece of crap while a couple of hundred of them wait for years. Why was McVeigh done in so quickly? If you haven't already, check out Jello's band, the Guantanamo School of Medicine — The Audacity of Hype!

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BLAMING PINOLI

AVA:

The Editor has made it very clear of his bias towards the dying breed of AVHS football fans as the recent controversy surrounding AVHS football program reared its ugly head last week. I have ties to the community as I have worked one day a week at the AV Health Center for 16 years. I have ties to athletics as I was the Panther var­sity basketball coach for one year, a Mendocino basket­ball coach for seven and counting, and the Mendocino HS Athletic Director for a year at the time the MHS Football program ended for two years for lack of players. I am proud to have a banner on the gym wall in the “Panther Den.” I was briefed about the ending of Mr. Pardini as announcer and talked to two sources who attended the school board meeting where “all hell broke loose” about football.

My understanding is a group of football fans and fami­lies are very upset at the school for the state of the football program. Harsh words like sabotage were sug­gested for the lack of interest and numbers of students in the program. Names of said sabotagers were named as Principal Tomlin and Athletic Director Robert Pinoli.

I suggest the love for football is clouding the thoughts and logic of hardcore football fans and would like to suggest some alternative theories for the demise of football at the small AVHS. There are about 160 stu­dents at AVHS, with about 80 boys in the school at a time. Given the current population of the school, about 80% (or 64) of these boys live within a family culture where the other futbol, or soccer, is the national sport. When I asked about the team, I was told 34 of these 80 boys came out for soccer and when they were told they only had 22 unifoms, all the boys stayed on just to be a on the field and play with their friends. The other not chosen option was to play American football.

Math has told us that only about 50% of small school boys play sports, a very high percent as compared to large schools where only the most talented survive and the rest are told to go home. If 34 of these 40 want to play soccer, that does not leave enough to sustain a con­sistent JV and Varsity football program. This theory seems to make more sense to me than to blame the long time AD, with a history of supporting football at AVHS, or the new principal who hasn’t had time to screw it up yet. I suggest if blame is necessary for this natural occurrence, maybe looking at the wine industry causing inflated housing prices, driving young local families away, and barely paying living wages. But really, do we blame Pinoli??

Jim Young

Halfway between AVHS and MHS

Ed reply: My point is that whatever the school attempts in the way of sports or anything else they ought to attempt to do right. Anyway, it's not a choice of futbol or football, or Hispanic vs. Anglo, since local football also attracts a good number of Hispanics, as it has this season. The prob here is equity. Football is getting short shrift. A complicating factor, of course, is the large percentage of local woo-woos hostile to football. They see the game as somehow resulting in George Bush, or versions thereof. The woos would much prefer to see the kids out there under the Fri­day night lights pushing around a big, organic, coed, no-score earth ball, thus pro­moting the fantasy the woos also promote in the classroom, that the big world beyond is just like high school — straight A's and teddy bear hugg­sies for everyone ever after. Major Scaramella's excellent account of last week's school board meeting presents the true issues involved here.

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FREEDOM FOR THE SCOTT SISTERS

Editor,

A reader sent the following to me, and I forward it to you in case it might be of interest.

Bob Herbert's column in the NY Times on the Scott sisters, two black women in Parchman Prison in Mis­sisisippi for the last 16 years for the theft of $11. The three boys who actually committed the theft got two years each but these women (supposedly the instigators, although the evidence appears to have been engineered) each got double life sentences. One is dying of kidney failure from untreated (or poorly treated) diabetes.

More info is available online and in Herbert's two col­umns. A small group of Freedom Riders, about to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Rides, have taken up the cause and are trying to get more publicity for the case, especially since Haley Barbour, Mississippi's gov­ernor, has so far not issued a pardon — and his pardon history is quite interesting as well. Barbour has made a move to hijack the anniversary celebration.

Todd Walton

Mendocino

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MENDO MELLOW

My Dear Friends,

Ms. Trippet of Elk raised an important point on the value of CBD, though I believe she may be mistaken about the amount in leaves. Some marijuana buds are high in CBD, as well as THC. This was true of famous “mellow” varieties of the last 1960s pot such as Panama Red, Jamaican Ganja and Thai. A book titled “marijuana potency,” influential with growers around 1979-1980 — with much valuable information on the genetics and chemistry of pot — promoted the doctrine that bud should be bred for high THC and low CBD. I’ve con­tinuously argued that the best pot is high in both.

You can get an effect virtually identical to a high THC/low CBD joint by taking a very small does of LSD, mescaline, or psilocybin. And, you can get an effect vir­tually identical to a large dose of LSD, mescaline, on psilocybin by eating several grams of bud or hash, which few can afford to do at American prices. Tangiers and Katmandu come to mind.) The uniquely mellow, deeply relaxing marijuana high comes from smoking a variety with the correct THC-CBD balance, and the infinitely varied ratios make genetic diversity important.

I’ve also long opposed the Humboldt sinsemilla cult. There’s a complete myth that seedless pot is stringer, and when 90% of the buds being produced are seedless, you get an in-bred strain.

Very sincerely,

Michael Bear Carson

Ione

PS. Yes, I’m the same guy who’s twice sent you letters defending Israel. My mom is a Jew with relatives mur­dered by Nazis, and my Dad is Scottish and Iroquois. I want to see all little nations survive. Thank you for printing my letter and long live the Libertarian Party!

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UP WITH SENIORS

Dear Anderson Valley Community Members:

The Anderson Valley Senior Center would like to thank you for your wonderful support this year. We have made some exciting changes and improvements at the Senior Center and, thanks to your support and donations, we hope to continue with these.

The recent addition of our new cook, Natalie Matson, the use of fresh, locally grown produce, and the expanded bus availability, have all had a very positive effect at the Senior Center. We have doubled participa­tion and we hope to see the numbers continue to increase.

Some of the changes include a second evening meal with Bingo on the second Tuesday of each month. Par­ticipation is huge for this event and everyone has a blast. We are cooking all the meals from scratch using fresh produce, some of which is purchased from local organic growers and some is picked directly from the garden we have started behind the Senior Center. We have also added tables and chairs in the garden area for people to enjoy. We recently installed a wireless router providing wireless internet access to the public for a small donation of $2 to receive your password. Some laptops can even get reception in the garden.

We have also been promised a new bus from MTA that we hope to receive soon. With this new bus we hope to be able to provide expanded excursions to special events. Meanwhile, we now offer a trip to the Casino in Ukiah on the last Monday of each month and we con­tinue to provide transportation to and from lunch and dinner meals and errands around the valley. The bus is also available for appointments in Ukiah. Space is lim­ited on the bus so please call Natalie at 972-2723 to reserve your spot.

Some of the events we have coming up in the next couple of weeks are:

Southwest Dinner Fundraiser – October 23rd, held at the Fairgrounds,

Happy Hour 6:00 ~ Dinner served at 7:00pm. Live music/Raffle.

Casino Bus Trip – Monday, October 25th – call to book your seat.

Evening Meal – Tuesday, October 26th, 6:00pm at AV Senior Center

Flu Shot Clinic – Tuesday, October 26th, 5:30pm to 7:30pm at the AV Senior Center

Lunch – Thursday, October 28th, 12.15pm at the AV Senior Center

Bus trip to Ukiah for Appointments and Errands - Monday, November 1st – call to book your seat.

Lunch – Tuesday, Nov 2nd and Thursday Nov 4th, both 12.15pm at the AV Senior Center

Dinner & Bingo – Tuesday, November 9th, 6:00pm, AVSC

We are always looking for volunteers to help with the meal prep, dishwashing, cleaning, gardening or with fundraisers. If you are available or need any further information about the Senior Center or are events please give Gina or Natalie a call at 707-895-3609. Since over half of our budget must be raised from donations, we hope you will consider sending us a donation to PO Box 591, Boonville, CA 95415, especially during the upcoming season of Thanksgiving. .

Please come down to the Center and visit us for lunch, dinner or a fundraiser. You need not be a Senior to join us for a meal and the whole family is welcome.

Sincerely,

Anderson Valley Senior Center

Boonville


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CUT TO THE VIDEO TAPE

Letter to the Editor,

It was recently suggested that I support Measure C. I can only pray the guy was kidding. I struck up a conversation about a trip I recently took to Minnesota and Wisconsin to pick up a BUNCH of work to bring to Ukiah. A major manufacturer there is closing a component plant and moving its operation to Mexico, outsourcing about 2,000 jobs in the process. The sole reason I am able to take some of this work from their internal supplier is simple: we are efficient.

We make an exhaust system for them. With two welders, such as myself, we build 214 systems every day. The internal supplier is building the same system at a rate of 200 per day, using 12 welders. We are over six times more efficient! My observation is that their welders are ok, however, poor management is killing them.

Sound familiar?

What would the budget look like if the County provided the same services using one-sixth the head-count?  Would the county have a budget surplus?  Have the Supervisors ever challenged staff on efficiency? It’s always raise taxes or cut services. Lazy management!

I’m sure the Supervisors would say, “Well, you can’t compare manufacturing to service.” That is just, “Yeah, but…”, just as the guys at the closing plants didn’t believe we are six times more efficient until I showed them a video. Then they said, “Yeah, but…”

Unfortunately, for the plant that is closing, they couldn’t raise taxes.

Best Regards,

Ross H. Liberty

Ukiah

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