Upper Ridging | Panther Victory | Wendling Store | 162 Reopens | Fallen Soldier | Huckleberry Jam | Civil Warriors | Bair Lair | Pole Cat | Counsel Conflict | Scary Masks | Supes Notes | Little Buddy | Rental Policy | Freedoms | Ed Notes | Yesterday's Catch | Baldwin Negligent | Mushroom 1 | Dry Migration | Kamala Schmala | Escape Hell | Forget Nam | Stop DST | TP Scorecard | Speaking Up | Mushroom 2 | Phone Tag | Trumpspeak | Fascist Agenda | Whitewashing History | WW1 Trench | Atlantis
WARM DRY WEATHER will prevail across northwest California through the weekend due to persistent upper level ridging. A frontal system will then pass east across the region on Monday and aid in light rainfall. Upper ridging will redevelop thereafter and favor additional periods of dry weather Tuesday and Wednesday. (NWS)
OUR AV GIRLS GOT GAME. Fans filled the west bleachers last night (Wednesday) to watch Anderson Valley's High School's girls volleyball team take on the visiting St. Bernard girls for the small school area championship. St. Bernard's is a Catholic high school in the center of crumbling, drug and crime ridden Eureka, once a thriving port town in Humboldt County. Watching St. Bernard's go through their warm-up drills, I couldn't help but notice a lithe, 6'4" girl who looked and moved like a ballerina. “Uh oh. This kid is going to spike and spike and spike our much shorter Boonville girls all night.” But, as it turned out, no matter how hard the St. Bernard's ballerina powered the ball over the net at our girls, one or another of our lasses, often diving to the floor, managed to keep the ball in play and, eventually, wore the visitors down in three straight sets. Coached by Mike ‘Flick’ McDonald, the winning-est volleyball coach in the West, or right up there, our girls next take on Big Valley Christian of Modesto, “a Christ-centered secondary school” where parents pay $26,533 a year in the vain hope that their little sinners will be spiritually fortified against the prevailing decadence. This crucial match will be played far, far from home — Modesto this Saturday night.
THE COMPANY STORE AT WENDLING (NAVARRO).
Another old postcard from ebay…
Not sure when, but guessing circa 1905-1910.
— Marshall Newman
HIGHWAY 162 REOPENS after propane truck crash — Authorities reopened Highway 162 in Mendocino County on Thursday after a two-day closure just east of Longvale that began when a truck carrying propane overturned, officials said. A Laytonville man was driving a Thompson Gas truck east on Highway 162 when the vehicle tipped over at 11:35 a.m. Tuesday about four miles east of Highway 101, the CHP said in a news release. The overturned truck had been blocking the eastbound lane. It was carrying 2,600 pounds of liquid propane, which the driver was set to deliver in the Covelo Valley, the CHP said. The crash caused a valve line to rupture and gas propane began leaking out, prompting the closure. The reason the truck flipped is unknown. The driver got out of the vehicle with minor injuries, according to authorities. (Matt Pera, Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
LEW CHICHESTER NOTES: The story going around regarding the propane truck wreck on the Covelo road is the driver was faced with a split second decision- run head on into a car over the yellow line and in his lane or avoid the head on and go off the road. The truck went off the road, flipped, the car continued speeding away. Those of us who live out here in Covelo have all witnessed, with increasing regularity lately, speeding and reckless driving on 162 as if it is some kind of personal racetrack for drivers who disregard the basic safe driving practices. I used to commute daily on that road and found that driving as fast as you could you would get there (either out to 101 or back to Round Valley) a minute or so, five minutes at the most, sooner. Go fast if you want but stay in your own lane.
HUCKLEBERRY JAM IS A SWEET HOLIDAY GIFT
I have plenty of Huckleberry Jam for your holiday season breakfast-lunch-dinner.
Great Gift, for yourself and for your friends and neighbors!
8oz jar--$16.00 or case of 12 -- $172
Call Joshua at 707-734-3112
Joshua Lowell <firstname.lastname@example.org>
WOMAN FOUND UNINVITED IN A HENDY WOODS Cabin Allegedly Flees Rangers Three Separate Occasions Resulting in a High-Risk Stop at Gunpoint
On the evening of Saturday, November 6, 2021, 29-year-old Jennifer Nicole Bair was found inside a Hendy Woods State Park rental cabin near Philo that a visiting family had already reserved. California State Parks Chief Ranger Loren Rex described a dramatic turn of events born from Bair’s discovery that would end with Bair at gunpoint and finally booked into the Mendocino County jail....
COUNTY COUNSEL DOUBLES DOWN
AVA News Service
COUNTY COUNSEL Christian Curtis, who functions more as the private attorney for CEO Carmel Angelo than for the best interests of the County, has an item on Monday’s Supes agenda asking the Board to hire SF Law Firm Manning & Kass for legal assistance to the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office for $50,000 (for starters) beginning November 16.
“Nov 15, Item 3a: Agenda Title: Discussion and Possible Action Including Approval of Agreement with Manning & Kass for Legal Assistance for Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office in the Amount of $50,000 Effective November 16, 2021 Through June 30, 2022. (Sponsor: County Counsel)
“Recommended Action/Motion: Approve agreement with Manning & Kass for legal assistance for Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office in the amount of $50,000, effective November 16, 2021 through June 30, 2022; and authorize Chair to sign same.
“Previous Board/Board Committee Actions: On August 3, 2021, the Board of Supervisors considered selection of outside counsel to provide legal advice and representation to the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office regarding areas in which County Counsel has a conflict of interest and designation of scope of conflict work; by general consensus the Board authorized the hiring of Manning & Kass to represent the Sheriff, in the event that the Sheriff does not choose one of the four firms submitted for consideration.
“Summary of Request: Under Government Code section 31000.6, the Board of Supervisors is required to contract with outside counsel to the Sheriff when specific legal services necessary for the performance of his duties cannot be provided by County Counsel due to a conflict of interest. Previously, the Board of Supervisors agreed to provide Sheriff Kendall with such counsel, but did not agree with the Sheriff’s preferred law firm due to concerns over costs and conflict of interest. Sheriff Kendall subsequently initiated a court proceeding (Kendall v. Board of Supervisors, 21CV00561) seeking an order to compel the Board to contract with his preferred firm. That matter is still pending in the Mendocino County Superior Court.
Under the relevant statute, the Board has an obligation to provide counsel without first waiting for an order of the Court. Although the Sheriff is litigating over the selection of counsel, County Counsel recommends entering into this agreement to assure that the Board is in compliance with its statutory obligations. The vendor has been made aware that the agreement might have to be terminated depending on what orders the Superior Court ultimately issues. Additionally, the vendor is aware that Sheriff Kendall might choose not to engage their services until that litigation has been resolved.”
COUNTY COUNSEL Curtis admits there is a conflict (except when he tries to argue in court that there isn’t) and the Sheriff is entitled to outside legal counsel. Except Curtis wants to be able to choose the Sheriff’s attorney, hence Monday’s special meeting agenda item. But the issue is currently in court waiting for a written decision from Judge Ann Moorman.
DURING BUDGET HEARINGS back in June the Board of Supervisors threatened to send the Sheriff a bill if he goes over the CEO/Board approved budget. They also pushed to combine the Sheriff’s computer system with the county’s general purpose system. The Sheriff’s budget is routinely underfunded with a deficit exceeding $1 million annually and this year was no different, although at the last minute the Board tossed an (one-time) extra million into the Sheriff’s budget after he filed for his attorney.
THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE provided documentation that they were being underfunded for overtime and vehicle replacement but the Board went ahead and approved the budget as submitted by the CEO. Even if the Sheriff were willing to sell his home and cash out his savings to pay the bill that would only work for one year.
SHERIFF KENDALL realized he could not rely on County Counsel Curtis (who takes his orders from the CEO) for advice and sought approval to hire Duncan James of Ukiah, his attorney of choice. Curtis told the Board there was indeed a conflict between his office and the Sheriff. And said the Sheriff was entitled to legal counsel he was comfortable with as long as it wasn’t Duncan James.
CURTIS COMPLAINED that Duncan James is already suing the County in Federal court on behalf of former Ag Commissioner Harinder Grewal who is alleging wrongful termination based on discrimination. And Curtis was concerned Duncan James would cost too much money, citing the Ukiah Valley Sanitation District lawsuit against the City of Ukiah.
THE DISTRICT/JAMES won that case. The City wound up paying millions in attorney’s fees and millions more in damages. Ironically, County Counsel Curtis, who expressed concern over the cost of hiring Duncan James, is the one driving up the cost in the dispute with the Sheriff by dragging out the hearing on whether he gets to hire an attorney of his own choosing or one chosen by Curtis. Curtis also routinely overruns his own budget, but nobody has threatened to bill him for it.
KENDALL WAS FORCED to choose between accepting an attorney handpicked by Curtis or going to court. Kendall chose court. Judge Ann Moorman first wanted confirmation there was a conflict. Curtis, after telling the Board there was a conflict, tried arguing to the court that there was no conflict.
BACK IN SEPTEMBER Judge Moorman found there was a conflict between the Board (and therefore County Counsel) on the budget issues and on the attempted takeover the Sheriff’s computer system and that she would be issuing a ruling in about six weeks. Six weeks have come and gone but Judge Moorman, the presiding judge, has a lot of responsibilities and a reputation for thoroughness. Her ruling, once issued, is likely to be airtight.
CHRISTIAN CURTIS, who is developing a reputation as an ethically challenged enabler for the CEO, seems blissfully ignorant of the risk he’s running by trying to create a fait accompli for an issue that Judge Moorman has taken under submission.
AND THE SUPERVISORS seem oblivious that they (and the taxpayers) are being taken for an expensive ride by the CEO and County Counsel. The CEO is known for her abuse of power and targeting anyone who disagrees with her. She decided to take down Kendall when he told the Supervisors he would no longer meet with her because of “trust” issues. Which means he was tired of being misled or lied to.
AMONG THE ISSUES Kendall objected to was the CEO unilaterally ditching a grant Kendall was applying for. The grant sought funding to reduce illegal cannabis cultivation and create an educational program to reduce cannabis use by young people. Kendall was encouraged to apply for the grant by the Board of Supervisors.
THE FINAL STRAW for Kendall was the CEO telling him that moving the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to the Admin Center complex would be permanent. Which meant he could move forward with converting the old EOC/Sheriff’s Office training room into a courtroom which would save $500,000 annually in transportation costs. But then the CEO changed her mind and decided to give the new EOC space to the cannabis program leaving the County Emergency ops team to have to scramble to set up every time there was another emergency.
DID THE CEO bother to consult with Kendall? Or at least let him know she changed her mind? No. She waited until a budget workshop where Kendall was presenting a request for funding to build out the EOC in what he thought would be the new permanent location. Angelo interrupted him to say the space was not available – it was being given to the cannabis program.
ANGELO KNEW IN ADVANCE the Sheriff would be asking for funding to build out the permanent EOC. It was part of the agenda materials. In theory the Supes set policy for the County but in this case the CEO unilaterally reversed course on the location of the permanent EOC which also prevented the Sheriff from saving $500,000 a year on transportation and set up costs. And that was before Kendall went public with his CEO related “trust” issues.
THE BOARD, who should be setting policy and minding the budget, sat passively by while the CEO and County Counsel provoked a pointless and expensive legal battle with the Sheriff. We’ll find out Tuesday if the Supes are willing to go along with County Counsel’s ploy to hire an attorney for the Sheriff that the Sheriff doesn’t want and won’t use before Moorman has even ruled.
WE DOUBT JUDGE MOORMAN will be impressed with County Counsel’s clumsy attempt to circumvent her pending ruling.
SUPERIVISOR MULHEREN: “LAFCO Special Meeting [on Monday] - receive the protests for the Annexation and Tax Sharing for the Ukiah Valley Fire District Annexation over the City of Ukiah area. The number of protests did not qualify to be sent to the ballot and the LAFCO decision stands. This is a big win for our community as we have struggled to enhance and streamline fire service for decades.”
ms notes: Protests did not meet the 25% of property owners or registered voters threshhold. So even assuming all protests were valid, there weren’t near enough. And very little public comment. Obviously, despite MedStar Ambulance’s Leonard Winter’s last minute attempt to stir up interest in the subject was insufficient to wake up Ukiah taxpayers. In the present climate of apathy, bureaucracy, closed meetings, and government obfuscation, there appears to be very little interest in what government does — and they know it and they are pushing through whatever self-serving agenda they want because most people either don’t pay any attention or have given up trying.
* * *
SUPES TO DISCUSS THE FLATTEN LAWSUIT
CLOSED SESSION ITEM 9B: “Pursuant to Government Code Section 54956.9(d)(1) - Conference with Legal Counsel - Existing Litigation: One Case - Ezekial Flatten et al. v. Bruce Smith et al. - Case No. 21-CV-7031-RMI”
* * *
ALL OF A SUDDEN there may be a magic improvement in cannabis permit applications. Supervisor Maureen Mulheren reported on Wednesday that: “After Mendocino Cannabis Program review, roughly 833 applications should become legally compliant operators with both the County and the State, which is about 80% of the original applicants.” Or at least that was her summary of what Cannabis Program Director Kristin Nevedal was trying to say when her audio feed was garbled at last Tuesday’s Board meeting.
But former Supervisor John McCowen doesn’t agree writing to the Board:
“Chair Gjerde and Honorable Members of the Board,
I respectfully request that you pull Item 4F (Local Assistance Grant Program Application) from the Consent Calendar for the purpose of Board discussion and direction.”
[4f. Approval of Submission of the Local Jurisdiction Assistance Grant Program Application; and Authorization for the Cannabis Program Manager, or Department Head, to Execute the Grant Agreement on Behalf of the County of Mendocino Should the Grant be Awarded Recommended Action: Approve the submission of the Local Jurisdiction Assistance Grant Program application; and authorize the Cannabis Program Manager, or Department Head, to execute the grant agreement on behalf of the County of Mendocino should the grant be awarded.]
“I believe it is critical that the Board take this opportunity to direct that the grant application include a request for funding for an Environmental Impact Report for a discretionary land use permit system in alignment with that provided for in Chapter 22.18.
“Unless something has changed, I believe Cannabis Program Staff is still of the opinion that up to 90% or more of current applicants will not obtain State Annual Licenses through the current Chapter 10A.17 Phase 1 & Phase 2 pathway. Therefore, many existing applicants will need a local discretionary land use permit system in order to satisfy the requirements of site specific CEQA and secure a State Annual License. The concern has been expressed that there is not enough time to complete an EIR, accept completed applications and notice them for hearing prior to 6/30/23. I believe the timelines can be met for a significant but unknown number of current applicants provided the County prioritizes doing so. For instance, today the Board could direct issuance of an RFP for a qualified consultant to prepare the EIR instead of waiting for approval of the grant.
“The purpose of the grant is to assist current applicants in moving from a Provisional to a State Annual License. Without a discretionary land use permit system most current applicants will not be able to obtain a State Annual License. For this reason it is entirely appropriate to include funding for an EIR in the grant application.
“Thank you for your consideration of this request.
John McCowen Ukiah”
Nor does Jude Thilman, Co Chair of the Mendocino County Cannabis Alliance (MCA)
“Dear County Officials,
I am writing with regard to item 4f, the Local Jurisdiction Assistance Program Grant Funding. This is a critical resource that deserves public consideration and comment. Please place it in open session for full transparency and community input.
With these grant funds, many cannabis operators languishing in the Provisional permitting pipeline could possibly have the resources they need to meet regulatory compliance. They are in this Provisional purgatory because they are trying to get an annuallicense and conduct business legally.
“Their input into the grant application is crucial if you are sincere about not de facto pushing them out of the legal marketplace and back into the "free" / underground market.
“If a standing BoS cannabis ad hoc committee existed, there would have likely been opportunities structured into this process that both provided transparency and secured comments from our local heritage farmers. Including open consideration of the variousprocesses required to enable folks to get their annual permits and state licenses is the bare minimum needed in lieu of having a standing cannabis ad hoc committee.
“Thank you for acting in support of our local craft cultivators and businesses by placing this item in open session on Tuesday, November 9, 2021.
Jude Thilman Co-Chair, MCA”
* * *
Ms. Nevedal provided the following pot permit stats on the Board on Tuesday:
Given Ms. Nevedal’s status chart, we tend to agree with the critics and remain unconvinced that Supervisor Mulheren’s rosy prediction will come anywhere close to being true.
* * *
FROM THE INFORMATION SERVICES Section of this week’s CEO Report:
“Property Tax Software System (Aumentum) — The Information Services Division continues to assist in the implementation of the Aumentum Property Tax Software System. We are happy to report that the system has successfully produced the annual Secured Property Tax bills on time. Additionally, work is continuing on the implementation of the Tax Sale module, which will assist in the sale of Tax defaulted properties. Completing the process of issuing corrected bills is on the near horizon. Each step of this implementation process requires the coordination of stakeholders at the Assessor, Auditor and Tax Collector’s Offices. Each of these departments have performed admirably during the challenging implementation of this major software package.”
* * *
GUESS how much budget information is in this week’s CEO Report. (Hint: It’s less than 1%.)
Nov. 16 Supervisors Meeting
Agenda Item 6b:
Discussion and Possible Action Including Formation of an Ad Hoc Committee that Would Explore Creation of a Balanced Short-Term Rental Policy for Business Licensees and Others, Consisting of Supervisor Williams and another Supervisor
(Sponsor: Supervisor Williams)
Recommended Action/Motion: Approve formation of an Ad Hoc Committee that would explore creation of a balanced short-term rental policy for business licensees and others, consisting of Supervisor Williams and another Supervisor.
Previous Board/Board Committee Actions: On April 10, 2018, the Board considered Preparation of an Ordinance Amending the Mendocino County Inland Zoning Code (Title 20, Division I), Chapter 20.146 (Accessory Use Regulations) and addition of Chapter 20.147 (Short-Term Vacation Rental Activities). The consensus of the Board was found and a directive was issued to staff to incorporate policies regarding Inclusionary Housing Accessory Dwelling Units and Short-Term Rentals as described by Supervisor Gjerde’s May 16, 2017 memo and previous direction to staff as stated on May 16, 2017, minutes of the Board of Supervisors meeting. Additionally, the Board decided Zoning Clearance should be required unless occupancy is greater than 120 days, otherwise minor use permit would apply.
Summary of Request: Short-term rentals can provide revenue for underutilized space which will otherwise not be available for the long-term rental market and the government should not intrude. However, the purchase of residential housing stock by out-of-area companies for the sole purpose of profit poses a risk to our communities. It is time to re-evaluate policy with the aim of balancing rights and protecting community.
Alternative Action/Motion: Do not appoint the ad hoc committee and give further direction as deemed appropriate.
THE CHICAGO POLICE, anticipating riots when Kyle Rittenhouse is acquitted, sent a memo to officers this week notifying them that one of their days off this weekend had been canceled, claiming it was due to 'current crime patterns' in the city.
MEDICAL PERIL, Fort Bragg Division, a reader writes: "I was ill for several weeks and had convinced myself I had Covid but the test was negative. So I had another test and it was negative but I was getting more ill everyday. I called my doctor and told him they didn't do the test correctly so he had another test done. Negative. By then I had lost 30 pounds, couldn't eat, running a fever, chills and then all of a sudden I couldn't walk. My husband called the ambulance to come and get me. After a clear chest x-ray and a good EKG they did a scan of my abdomen. I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in 1982 and have had sections of my intestine removed twice but I've been on an infusion treatment for the past eight years and have had no problems so never even thought it could be that. The scan they did showed that I had an abscess (caused by the Crohn's) inside of me that was resting against my kidney and pushing on the muscle in my leg so my leg wouldn't work. The infection is what was making me so ill. They ended up putting a drain into my back and keeping me in the hospital for 8 days on antibiotics through an IV. After I came home they left the IV in and I had to go back everyday for antibiotics. I'm feeling much better now but I actually thought I was going to die. I didn't realize an infection could make a person so ill. I'll certainly be paying more attention to my body from now on. I don't have time to be ill, I have things to do. I was here in the Fort Bragg Hospital, but if things didn't go well I had given instructions to family to get me out of here. After all the horror stories I had been hearing about our hospital I was a bit worried. After this experience and with what happened to my husband several months ago I have come to the conclusion that once a person gets admitted into the hospital the care is good. The problem is getting there and all the red tape and different departments you have to deal with in order to get to the point that you can get help. I got lucky because when I got to the ER (via ambulance) they weren't busy and got right on my case. The Dr. assured me he wouldn't give up until he found out what was going on. All the staff was on hand in the imaging department so it worked out great. One nurse told me I was lucky because all the staff was there. The Radiologist had to put the drain in because they had to put me in the scan machine to watch where it was going and I guess he isn't there everyday but just happened to be there on this day. My gosh, to get lab work done here is such an ordeal. You have to stop at the desk where the sour puss gal takes your paperwork and tells you to sit down. Then you sit and wait for one of their little rooms to be empty and your name is called to go in and give them all the info they all ready have. Then you go to the lab where you sit again until it's your turn. It's funny because when Adventist Health had their lab on Chestnut St. (before they took over the hospital) you could take your paperwork in and they would ask if your info was the same then take you right in for your labs to be done. All within about 15 minutes-in and out. At the hospital it takes sometimes an hour or more. I had Dr. Miller, Dr. Wong and Dr. Sussman taking care of me and all were great. No visitors were allowed because of the "surge in covid cases" so I didn't see anyone for 8 days from the outside world. My husband said the Dr.'s were calling him daily, sometimes more than once and updating him on what was going on. On the other hand I have friends who have taken their elderly parents in and waited hours in the ER to be seen. One person posted yesterday they took their elderly family member in and the hospital made her wait outside while the family member sat and waited to see the Dr. She said it was because she wasn't vaccinated and added that the family member wasn't vaccinated either. My advice to anyone needing to use the ER is call the ambulance so they take you right in and then hope all the staff needed is on hand. Like the nurse said to me ‘you got lucky’.”
THE FORT BRAGG name changers say on vague evidence I'm unable to find a citation for, that “Kah-la-deh-mun” was the Pomo language name for the village closest to what is now known as Fort Bragg. The name changers claim that “Kah-la-deh-mun” means “Surrounded by Trees,” a second claim I am unable to find a citation for. And the name changers claim that translation “is an apt name, if not a bit unwieldy for Western tongues.” (Speak for yourselves kemo sabes.) But the name changers conclude that “Fort Bragg,” on the other hand is no longer appropriate, if it ever was. This group is to gain momentum for the Fort Bragg name change. ”Join us!"
WELL, I've tried to join but haven't heard back and somehow don't expect to, the righteous not being known for either debate or irony. Whatever, as the young people say, re-writing history is your basic slippery slope, and if there's any group of people I trust less than the zealot wing of Coastlib, they don't spring to mind.
MOST adult-like people understand that bad things happen in the world, that history is a catalog of unspeakable horrors. Interesting as hell, though, but by changing a town's name because a handful of ahistorical prigs say it's “inappropriate,” a judgment inadequate as shorthand for General Bragg's lamentable life, well, logically, we'd also have to re-name America. Vespucci, after all, was a pal of Columbus's and… Well, no need to say the whole catechism. I say leave Fort Bragg as Fort Bragg. It's not as if General Bragg is celebrated. Most Fort Bragg people had no idea of Bragg before the Appropriate Police brought him up.
CRITICAL RACE THEORY also has not only the Appropriate People but the Inappropriate People in a national uproar, although it's not taught anywhere in the K-12 system, and although it's only an awkward and misleading term for teaching history whole, not teaching the sanitized version most of us have dozed through during high school.
PUT IT THIS WAY: The history teacher walks into the classroom and says, “Today, we can either discuss the Missouri Compromise or How The Dirty Murdering White Bastards Tried To Kill All The Indians In Mendocino County.”
WHICH instruction is a high school kid going to opt for? Of course the teacher has to have some idea of balance so the young don't cry themselves to sleep thinking great, great grandpa was a killer and a land thief. “On the other hand, class, there's Abe Lincoln, Babe Ruth, Dr. Salk, and Mother Cabrini.”
CATCH OF THE DAY, November 11, 2021
JOSEPH BUCKINGHAM, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
DENISE HLICHY, Laytonville. DUI-alcohol&drugs, taking vehicle without owner’s consent, failure to appear.
OWEN KENNY, Willits. Domestic abuse, contempt of court, probation revocation.
CAMERON MCKENZIE-CHAPTER, Boonville. DUI-alcohol&drugs, addict driving a vehicle, possession of toluene or similar substance with intent to inhale and become intoxicated.
AMBERLY PENNOCK, Little River. Failure to appear.
JASON PITT, Willits. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
GABRIEL ROJAS, Ukiah. Arson of structure or forestland.
CODY SCHRAMER, Ukiah. Domestic battery, criminal threats.
JONATHAN WOLFE, Redwood Valley. Probation revocation.
DAVID WOOTEN, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.
NOT AN ACCIDENT
When Alec Baldwin took a gun that someone told him was unloaded, failed to check for himself, pointed it at a person he didn’t intend to harm, and another person directly behind her, and pulled the trigger, he violated every basic principle of safe gun handling.
Baldwin and his media supporters refer to the shooting as a “tragic accident.” This may be due to ignorance, or it may be an attempt to mitigate the legal fallout, but they are misleading the public. It was tragic, but no accident. It was negligence.
Baldwin’s negligence was worse than if you or I had done the same thing because he failed two further responsibilities. He is an actor who handles guns in his roles. As part of his job, he should have practiced safe gun handling until it was second nature to him. And as a producer of the film, he was responsible for safety on the set.
In a better world, Baldwin would publicly acknowledge his negligence and use his status to promote safe gun handling. Sadly, that’s not our world or who Baldwin is, so our flawed legal system must do the job. The truly sad part is that a teaching moment that could prevent similar tragedies in the future will be lost.
WINGED WARNING: Migrating Birds Hit Hard by California’s Drought
It says something about the complexity of California’s water crisis that there are so many actors in the state’s water wars, all clamoring for more. Nature, alone, is silent in this fight, relying on others to speak on behalf of the welfare of wildlife and waterways....
I REGRET TO SAY that President Joe Biden and his Vice-President, Kamala Harris are fast becoming the political equivalent of “Dumb and Dumber's” Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne. Barely a day goes by when one of them isn't doing something worthy of abject mockery - from Biden falling asleep at the COP26 climate change summit, to Harris appearing in a World Space Day video with hired child actors who she pretended were wide-eyed real kids enthralled by her exultation of space exploration. And it's not just me that thinks this. A truly shocking new USA Today-Suffolk University poll reveals crushingly bad approval ratings for Biden with just 38% of Americans approving of his presidency and 59% disapproving. But the President is basking in approval sunshine compared to his deputy. Staggeringly, less than 3 in 10 Americans (27.8%) approve of the job Kamala Harris is doing, with 51.2% disapproving. This makes her the least popular vice-president at this stage of an administration for half a century, worse even than Dick Cheney at his lowest. — Piers Morgan
WHY I CAN’T
by Dave Connolly
Ratshit and the Weasel and I
are behind this dike, see,
and Victor Charlie,
he's giving us what for.
And Ratshit, he lifts his head,
just a little, but just enough
for the round
to go in one brown eye,
and I swear to Christ,
out the other.
And he starts thrashing,
and bleeding, and screaming,
and trying to get
the top of his head
to stay on,
but we have to keep shooting.
A B-40 tunnels into the dike
and blows the Weasel against me.
He doesn't get the chance
to decide whether or not
he should give up and die.
Now I'm crying
and I'm screaming, "Medic,"
but I have to keep shooting.
At this point, I always wake,
and big, black Jerome
and little, white William,
are not dying beside me
I can still smell their blood,
I can still see them lying there.
You see, these two,
they've been taking turns
dying on me,
again and again and again
for all these long years,
and still people tell me,
(Dave Connolly was a rifleman with the 11th Armored Cavalry in 1968-1969. His book is Lost in America.)
ONE WAY OR THE OTHER
Daylight saving time started in the U.S. during World War I. Clocks and watches were relatively expensive then, so most households had only one or two devices. Today we have multiple clocks, watches, clock radios, ovens with timers, microwaves with clocks, coffee makers with timers, and so on. When the day comes to change from standard time to daylight saving time many of us have a significant chore. At one time it was thought that doing the switch saved energy, but that turned out to be wrong. Why not just keep it one way or the other? This might be something that Republicans and Democrats can agree on.
IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY of intellectuals to speak the truth and to expose lies. This, at least, may seem enough of a truism to pass over without comment. Not so, however. For the modern intellectual, it is not at all obvious. Thus we have Martin Heidegger writing, in a pro-Hitler declaration of 1933, that “truth is the revelation of that which makes a people certain, clear, and strong in its action and knowledge”; it is only this kind of “truth” that one has a responsibility to speak. Americans tend to be more forthright. When Arthur Schlesinger was asked by The New York Times in November, 1965, to explain the contradiction between his published account of the Bay of Pigs incident and the story he had given the press at the time of the attack, he simply remarked that he had lied; and a few days later, he went on to compliment the Times for also having suppressed information on the planned invasion, in “the national interest,” as this term was defined by the group of arrogant and deluded men of whom Schlesinger gives such a flattering portrait in his recent account of the Kennedy Administration. It is of no particular interest that one man is quite happy to lie in behalf of a cause which he knows to be unjust; but it is significant that such events provoke so little response in the intellectual community—for example, no one has said that there is something strange in the offer of a major chair in the humanities to a historian who feels it to be his duty to persuade the world that an American-sponsored invasion of a nearby country is nothing of the sort. And what of the incredible sequence of lies on the part of our government and its spokesmen concerning such matters as negotiations in Vietnam? The facts are known to all who care to know. The press, foreign and domestic, has presented documentation to refute each falsehood as it appears. But the power of the government’s propaganda apparatus is such that the citizen who does not undertake a research project on the subject can hardly hope to confront government pronouncements with fact.
The deceit and distortion surrounding the American invasion of Vietnam is by now so familiar that it has lost its power to shock. It is therefore useful to recall that although new levels of cynicism are constantly being reached, their clear antecedents were accepted at home with quiet toleration. It is a useful exercise to compare Government statements at the time of the invasion of Guatemala in 1954 with Eisenhower’s admission—to be more accurate, his boast—a decade later that American planes were sent “to help the invaders” (New York Times, October 14, 1965). Nor is it only in moments of crisis that duplicity is considered perfectly in order. “New Frontiersmen,” for example, have scarcely distinguished themselves by a passionate concern for historical accuracy, even when they are not being called upon to provide a “propaganda cover” for ongoing actions. For example, Arthur Schlesinger (New York Times, February 6, 1966) describes the bombing of North Vietnam and the massive escalation of military commitment in early 1965 as based on a “perfectly rational argument”: so long as the Vietcong thought they were going to win the war, they obviously would not be interested in any kind of negotiated settlement.
The date is important. Had this statement been made six months earlier, one could attribute it to ignorance. But this statement appeared after the UN, North Vietnamese, and Soviet initiatives had been front-page news for months. It was already public knowledge that these initiatives had preceeded the escalation of February 1965 and, in fact, continued for several weeks after the bombing began. Correspondents in Washington tried desperately to find some explanation for the startling deception that had been revealed. Chalmers Roberts, for example, wrote in the Boston Globe on November 19 with unconscious irony:
[late February, 1965] hardly seemed to Washington to be a propitious moment for negotiations [since] Mr. Johnson…had just ordered the first bombing of North Vietnam in an effort to bring Hanoi to a conference table where the bargaining chips on both sides would be more closely matched.
Coming at that moment, Schlesinger’s statement is less an example of deceit than of contempt—contempt for an audience that can be expected to tolerate such behavior with silence, if not approval.
— Dwight Macdonald
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…We have followed Nazi racist theories in segregating Negro soldiers in our military forces and in deporting from their homes on the West Coast to concentration camps in the interior tens of thousands of citizens who happened to be of Japanese ancestry; we have made ourselves the accomplice of the Maidanek butchers by refusing to permit more than a tiny trickle of the Jews of Europe to take refuge inside our borders; we have ruled India brutally, imprisoning the people's leaders, denying the most elementary civil liberties, causing a famine last year in which hundreds of thousands perished.
“But this is monstrous, you say? We, the people, didn't do these things. They were done by a few political leaders, and the majority of Americans, Englishmen, and (perhaps—who knows?) Russians deplore them and favor quite different policies. Of if they don't, then it is because they have not had a chance to become aware of the real issues and to act on them.
In any case, I can accept no responsibility for such horrors. I and most of the people I know are vigorously opposed to such policies and have made our disapproval constantly felt in the pages of the Nation and on the speaker's platforms of the Union For Democratic Action.”
Precisely. And the Germans could say the same thing. And if you say, why didn't you get rid of Hitler if you didn't like his policies, they can say: But you people (in America and England, at least) merely had to vote against your Government to overthrow it, while we risked our necks if we even talked against ours. Yet you Britishers have tolerated Churchill for years, and you Americans have thrice re-elected Roosevelt by huge majorities…
From Dwight Macdonald's 1945 essay, The Responsibility of Peoples.
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Macdonald also cites the saturation bombing of German cities by the US and Britain during World War 2, atrocities that should also be pondered by American students.
Maybe those atrocities show that the United States wasn't a racist power that only incinerated Japanese cities?
“Our” bombing of Dresden during The Good War.
(Rob Anderson, District 5 Diary)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
A couple of months ago, I was informed by the cell phone company I used that I MUST upgrade my simple, reliable phone ’cause it wasn’t compatible with 5G. I thought about that, then decided to get what I used to call a throw-away, prepaid phone with another outfit.
The plan with the phone company to which I subscribed, charged about about $53 per month for a monthly allotment of 400 minutes, a bit over $600 per year. I had long ago disabled text messaging and rarely gave out my cell number, and the thing was off unless I was making a long-distance call. In a “busy” month, I used maybe half an hour of my allotment of minutes.
So, I ended up getting the prepaid setup. It cost me about $100 for 400 minutes, which have to be used up within a year. The phone itself cost about $30. I much prefer the old Motorola Star Tac. Its operation was straightforward and simple, and the small, black-and-white screen was visible in any light. The new one, though a flip phone has a huge, colored screen that I cannot read in sunlight, plus its operation is not particularly “intuitive”. It tries to be a “smart” while remaining a “dumb” flip phone.
So far, I have made one call, to my home number, just to see if the POS actually works. It did. And, I figure saving $500 over the year is worth the bother.
One bad thing about the new “plan”. I started getting emails from people wanting to “like” me from F-ck Book. That was weird, since I have never set up a F-uckbook account. Apparently buying the damned plan signed me up. Since I blocked two messages from F-ckbook, I haven’t been bothered by them any longer…at least so far. I may have to get another plan next year, especially if F-ckbook starts sending me stuff again.
Hell, all I use the damned cell phone for is long distance, and for a possible emergency while out in the middle of nowhere–but then again, if that happens, I probably won’t be somewhere that has a signal anyway.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers didn’t lie about being vaccinated against COVID. He just didn’t tell the truth. It’s called “Trumpspeak.”
VITAL MEDICAL HISTORY DENIED--Book Whitewashed Class War as Cause of Workers’ Illness from Coal to Covid
by Dr. Nayvin Gordon
Eliminating the concept of class war, a deliberate attempt to bury the history of the worker's progressive role ...
Vital information published in the 1988 edition of a respected book on workers’ health was removed from the 2003 edition of “Occupational and Environmental Health” by Levy and Wegman.
Removed--“Conflict Between The Profit Motive And Individual Fulfillment.” “Workers’ desire for comfort, income, safety, and leisure is continually counterbalanced by the employer’s need for profit.” ”The Drive For Greater Productivity leads employers to seek the highest possible rates of productivity.”
Removed --“Twelve Myths About Work Related Disease — twelve ways in which business owners divert attention from their responsibility for causing disease including denial, disinformation, lies, and anti-scientific propaganda.
Removed-- Brief History Of Occupational Health In The United States—labor organizations in the 1870’s and 1880s, demanded the adoption of measures providing for the health and safety of those engaged in mining and manufacturing, building industries, and for injuries.”
Removed--the Joint Board of Sanitary Control was established as a result of a massive strike of garment workers...”
Removed-- resurgence of the labor movement in the 1930s again directed to occupational health problems forced the Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act, required compliance with health and safety standards by employers.”
Removed-- occupational diseases can almost always be prevented.” … “significant ideological and powerful political and economic forces oppose realization of a safe and healthy workplace for all.”
This whitewashed history denies readers the understanding of the causal relationship between social and economic forces and disease. History clearly documents how the organized struggles of workers led to improvements in health and working conditions, they were never given to the workers by the profit-driven owners of business. The mass media is filled with reports of one corporation or another “putting profits over people,” but this has always been the case as clearly shown in The Brief History of Occupational Health that was deleted from the 2003 edition.
“The richest one-quarter of one percent of Americans makes 80% of all individual political contributions, and corporations outspend labor by 10 to 1.” (Profit Over People, Noam Chomsky,1999) This overwhelming power influenced the government to weaken or eliminate unions with anti-worker regulations, leaving workers with less ability to force their demands for safety on the job.
Beginning in the 1970’s Industry mobilized and financed a propaganda machine on the basis of misleading evidence about the science of workers’ health. It was called The Business Round Table Corporate Action Committees, its avowed objective was to reduce government regulation, and stop the government from fixing the problem caused by the profit system. Continuing into the 1980s, denial and uncertainty were promoted by industrialists, bankers, and many politicians to deny and downplay science. Today “Nearly all leading corporations are part of trade groups that lobby for pro-business positions, such as lower taxes limited government, free markets ” Asa direct result of the pressure from industry, the government, which is heavily influenced by the political power of, corporations, bankers and the rich, has deregulated federal safety and health laws.
The government has weakened OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act), attacked OSHA whistleblowers, cut budgets, reduced the number of inspectors to weaken enforcement and substituted corporate “voluntary” compliance. Denying, downplaying and manipulating science that helps the 99% extends across the corporate world--from Exxon to Amazon, from Google to genetics, from plastics, pesticides, and opioids, to DuPont Chemical and nuclear power. They deny science and reason to protect profits and because it points to the urgent need for radical social, economic, political, and ecological transformation.
The Covid-19 pandemic has vividly revealed the brutality of a social system that callously allows millions to sicken and die from a preventable contagious disease. The corporate media and politicians make clear how they devalue life in the lust for profits. The Wall Street Journal wrote that eliminating Covid -19 is too expensive, yet they gladly allowed the government to pour over one trillion dollars into Wall Street as pandemic assistance. The New York Times advocated for allowing Covid to spread because it is too costly to eliminate, yet they have no problem with the government giving the military one trillion dollars every year. The stock market and billionaires have almost doubled their wealth, but they will not allow a tax on the rich to pay for a public health infrastructure and healthcare for all.
A social system built on profit, greed, and selfishness of a tiny minority cannot fulfill the social needs of the vast majority. History has shown the truth of the words of the great Frederick Douglass, “power concedes nothing without a demand. It never has and it never will.” To protect the health of the people it is time to demand an end to class war with the abolition of the profit system and the establishment of a system built on the vast social needs of the 99%. This can be achieved by the formation of an independent, militant, working people’s movement to establish a healthy egalitarian society-- social, political, and economic equality for all.
Dr. Nayvin Gordon
SINCE WE'VE RECENTLY FOUND the ruins of Jericho, and it's looking now like the legend of Sodom and Gomorrah may be historical recounting the blast caused by a significant meteor impact. It would be foolish to say Atlantis couldn't have existed. Though the only information we have is the story provided by Plato. It's very possible that Atlantis was a city that was inundated by a tsunami, since this is a geologically active area and numerous such events have happened in this area in the past. This suggests that the flooding of Atlantis may have been transitory, and that its ruins might be in plain sight on dry ground (and missed by us completely, because we're still looking for a sunken city.)
We already know that the ancients had remarkably sophisticated tools and technologies... It's only been fairly recently that we've been able to tease apart the meaning and purpose of the ancient Antikythera mechanism, which accurately predicted the positions of the sun, moon, and planets as well as eclipses. There is some suggestion that ancient Egyptians may even have had crude batteries and electric lights (which is still a controversial idea.) There is no sign however, in the region described by Plato, of any kind of man-made catastrophe. Just as the destruction of two cities by a visitor from space might have been spun into a legend about God's wrath, it makes sense that survivors of a tsunami might spin that into a morality story of people flaunting their disdain for nature and worship of technology.
— Marie Tobias