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Off the Record (December 29, 2021)

JIM PAGE NOTES:  “About the Ukiah Co-Op incident — here’s a cell phone video that’s pretty interesting to watch. You can clearly hear an employee say that the store protocols are posted and that “If you’re not wearing a mask we can’t check you out.” Somebody laughs and says, “Well, I’ll just fill up my cart.” They went in knowing what was going to happen, filled up their carts with things they had no intention of buying, and left a big mess. By the way, an acquaintance of mine here in Seattle who claims to be a doctor was posting anti vax articles on Facebook and I decided to source them. They all came from websites that also carried Jewish conspiracy stories and pro trump. That’s the through line right there.”

MENDOCINO LAND TRUST RE THE MILL SITE: "To Our Fort Bragg Supporters — November 24, 2021 — We were surprised to see our logo appear in the recent “Little Stinker” mailer distributed by the Skunk Train; this was not an advertisement placed by us and we were not consulted about its inclusion. While we have worked with the Skunk Train in the past on conservation projects, we have no involvement in their Fort Bragg Mill Site plans. We have serious concerns about the development of the Mill Site. We believe plans for the future of the Mill Site should be community driven and subject to local and state environmental regulations and permitting procedures."

ON-LINE reports of the 6.2 earthquake off Petrolia last week (Monday, 12:10pm) also report that telephonic warnings beat the quake by about 3 seconds. One guy said he yelled “Earthquake” just as his son replied, “Yeah, sure.” The warning system works, but is a couple of seconds enough for even the fastest-reacting person to get off a ladder or roll out from beneath a vehicle?

“A DANGEROUS PLACE” by the late Marc Reisner is the definitive California earthquake book. It’s not for either the faint of heart or paranoid personality types, it tells you everything you need to be fully informed. Part one is a technical delineation of the phenomenon, the second a frightening literary projection of what a big quake of '06 intensity would do to the Bay Area. Reisner points out that if large quakes occurred with the regularity they occurred in the Bay Area in the 19th century, San Francisco would be just about uninhabitable.

LOTS OF COMMENT about the relative hazards that can be swerved up by Mother Nature, with most locals saying they prefer potential earthquakes to tornados, but the fires and floods we get these days are plenty Biblical. The 1906 earthquake destroyed structures and killed people from the Bay Area north to Eureka, many of the fatalities occurring from the ensuing fires.

CAN’T RESIST a few AVA End-of-the-Year Awards:

NEW PUBLIC AGENCY least likely to do anything of public use — Drought/Water Agency; runner-up (perennial) Air Quality Office, Ukiah.

LEAST EFFECTIVE PUBLIC AGENCY — Mendocino County Supervisors. Runner-up: City of Ukiah.

BEST RUNNING SCAM — Northcoast Railroad Agency, Doug Bosco prop and sponsored by the Democratic Party of the Northcoast.

LAWMAN OF THE YEAR — Sheriff Matt Kendall despite being sued and generally disrespected by the Mendo supervisors.

WOOF-WOOF — Supervisors'  jive threat to hold department heads personally accountable for budget overruns. 

BEST PUBLIC EMPLOYEE — Chamise Cubbison for refusing to back off her challenge of DA's travel reimbursements.

JOURNALO ROOKIE OF THE YEAR — Matt LaFever of the local crime website, MendoFever.

LENIN’S TOMB AWARD — Bari Bombing Exhibit at the County Museum in Willits (and the entombed cultists who showed up).

SF'S INEFFECTIVE MAYOR, London Breed, has declared a state of emergency aimed at getting the homeless — crazy people, open air drug addicts, drop-fall drunks, and criminals out of their sidewalk tents and off the downtown streets. Sort of. The mayor said she was tired of “this bullshit,” apparently meaning the entire homeless fiasco. Removing the bullshit from this country and the whole show collapses like a giant, failed souffle. Bullshit is here to stay. This system runs on it.

THE PROBLEM with the mayor's bold bullshit is that, at bottom, the ongoing bullshit is supported by a small army of people who live off it. The mayor talks social worker talk about “linkage,” a site where all the dysfunctional street people — vaguely estimated at between 8,000 and 12,000 — would be sheltered, sorted out, and placed in specific places where they could get help. 

“LINKAGE” SITES do not exist, and crazy people don't know they're crazy; drug people may want to quit but in the meantime they're happy to live for shooting up; drunks can stop drinking if they're locked away and weaned off the bottle; criminals of the street type have no fear of jail or the justice system through which they've been already processed for many years. The mayor isn't about to deploy the necessary compulsion to carry out her anti-bullshit program. What we have here, Jake, is a perfect entropy.

THE ONLY ANSWER is drug and alcohol hospitals along the lines of the former state hospital system with massive housing construction to shelter the homeless and the millions of Americans who are a paycheck away from the streets.

THE RESPECTABLE HOMELESS are invisible. They live in their vehicles but keep up appearances and are mostly employed. There are also thousands of them in the greater Bay Area. Habitual criminals? Restorative justice but longer lockdowns for the habitual.

IN OTHER WORDS, democratic socialism, with socialist strategies, the only strategies which can end homelessness. Why won't it happen? Joe Manchin and the rest of the people leading us over the social-political cliff to even more chaos and, perhaps, civil war with the Trumpers.

BANQUO'S GHOST, his “cough” more like a death rattle, Poor Old Joe warned the unvaccinated that they had an enhanced shot at dying. “You have an obligation to yourselves, to your family and quite frankly, I know I’ll get criticized for this, to your country. Omicron is serious, potentially deadly business for unvaccinated people. I got my booster shot as soon as they were available,” he said, throwing a bouquet to Trump for announcing his own booster shot.

SO MANY CATS out of so many bags, but the one that seems to most disturb our apprehensive population is crime. A typical comment: “We are reaping what we have sown. Allow ‘protestors’ to riot with impunity. Allow shoplifting as long as it's below $950. Decline to prosecute serious crime. Hopefully, the Supreme Court will allow concealed carry in our state as it seems we are going to need to be our own police if this continues. We are watching the decline of our society.”

YEAH, we're watching the decline of society. On television. As it declines in certain long-declined areas. Most of us are affected only tangentially and mostly by the visuals we see on television.

I'D GUESS that the large majority of Americans are more worried by the ever higher prices they're paying for everything at the market and at the pump than they are about getting crimed.

HEY! Some nice writing by Phil Barber at the Press Democrat as he described the Rio Nido redwood dwellers: “When the damp comes to the North Bay, and the redwood canopy of the Russian River area grabs clouds from the sky and clutches them like babies, life here becomes a pitched battle against an ecosystem that seems intent on reclaiming the upper hand. Roofs grow pelts of moss, and untreated exterior walls become slick with green-black muck. Ferns and succulents bloom so aggressively from balconies, it’s hard to tell if they are sprouting from pots or straight out of the deck boards…”

THE FIRST Omicron death was an unvaccinated Texan in his fifties. He died a week ago Monday and had “underlying health problems.” Translation: Obese white man, unvaccinated, Trump voter.

POOR OLD JOE, our symbolic president, and walking symbol of elder abuse, was shoved out in front of the teleprompters last week to announce a long list of measures his cynical handlers say will slow down the spread of the Omicron mutation of the covid virus. They include a half-billion at-home, rapid tests mailed to Americans for free starting in January, that and testing sites plus “1,000 military medical professionals to help at overburdened hospitals, and six emergency-response teams” dispatched to Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Arizona, New Hampshire, and Vermont. The at-home tests have just commenced production….

A FOX NEWS bully boy named Jesse Watters told his fellow fascists recently at a "conservative" conference called "Turning Points USA,” that Dr. Fauci ought to be assassinated. "Go in for the kill shot. The kill shot? With an ambush? Deadly. Because he doesn't see it coming." Conservative blowhards get off on this kind of irresponsible talk but, as the cliche reminds us, words have consequences. Fauci, for the great sin of being the country's chief medical officer, said some time ago that he's had to go top security for himself and his family because death threats are now routine for him. 

A PRESS RELEASE from the HumCo City of Rio Dell came out swinging against pot taxes. The presser was accompanied by a photo of a giant commercial gro: “At a special meeting of the Rio Dell City Council on Tuesday, December 14th the Council approved a resolution urging the State government to consider reforming its cannabis taxation system….”

COMMENTS, all from Redheaded Blackbelt:

(1) Oh yeah- that’s a real mom n pop scene there (snicker)! Look- the tax isn’t the thing killing the small operators, it’s the overgrown supply. Most permitted scenes are already selling black market so that’s not the problem either. Lower the taxes and the biggest most mega-operations still have the advantage and will still crush the little permitted farms. The problem is…you got permits! Face it- you will be assimilated….this “tax revolt” is going nowhere and even if you get the state to grant you the shaving off of a few bucks it is an empty victory. The state wants mega-farms and big corporate owners…like Greasy Gavin’s friends he convinced to get involved. Very rich people who invest and make lots of money that used to be your money. Your tiny protest will not change that…maybe expand your revolt into a class war. Oh except most permitted scenes are wealthy people. Okay never mind. I’m out of suggestions!

(2) There is a niche for the small grower if given a fair chance. Look how local breweries took off. They competed against the real big boys and did very good. Good customer product will compete. Build up a loyal base

(3) I agree. Indeed I believe that we are realizing that “small is beautiful.” But if you came here to blow up big scenes w/o an established market then you are in trouble. If you are small and have a good product for your old friends/ customer base then you are gonna survive- just as long as you can live humbly w/ little overhead. But that’s all that many of us wanted to do in the first place! The luxury is being able to live here, work for yourself, breathe clean air and sometimes go to the river or jump in the ocean. That’s a good life!

(4) Reasons small farmers have been screwed : 1. Let’s start with our local “crooks” also known as Planning Dept and Supervisors. We began the process of permitting our farm shortly after legalization. It took the county three years and approximately $300k to permit my small farm on prime ag land. So we had approximately one year of decent prices before the shitshow began . If we’d had that three years of income while awaiting the county’s endless requirements and $$$$ needed (always $$$$) we may have had the funds needed to withstand a couple bad years. 2. When we applied for legalization there was a one acre cap on all grows in California until 2023. Ya well, that didn’t last long. 3. Even if we choose to not grow a season, we are required to pay our yearly permit fees, which are approximately $30k yearly . We can’t even close our cannabis bank account which is $1k a month, unless we surrender our licenses . 4: TOO much legal cannabis has been grown with no out! Bottom line! A tax moratorium will not help. We won’t ever even see it, the distros that we are forced to use will simply not pass on that change to us.

CHRIS CALDER remembers this quote from Joan Didion, the memorable writer who died last week: ”I’m not telling you to make the world better, because I don’t think that progress is necessarily part of the package,” she once wrote. “I’m just telling you to live in it. Not just to endure it, not just to suffer it, not just to pass through it, but to live in it. To look at it. To try to get the picture. To live recklessly. To take chances. To make your own work and take pride in it. To seize the moment. And if you ask me why you should bother to do that, I could tell you that the grave’s a fine and private place, but none I think do there embrace. Nor do they sing there, or write, or argue, or see the tidal bore on the Amazon, or touch their children. And that’s what there is to do and get it while you can and good luck at it.”

A STARTLING REPORT Thursday morning by Sarah Reith on KZYX said that freshly appointed Ukiah Police Chief, Noble Waidelich has been confirmed, via a lengthy investigation, as a wife abuser, specifically having head-butted and otherwise mistreated Mrs. Waidelich, aka Amanda Carley, a Ukiah-based probation officer. I say “startling” because Ms. Reith, a capable reporter, typically plays it safe, as she did here, but the evidence against the Chief has been nailed down in an exhaustive report by Andrew Porter of the Sheriff's Department. On the other hand, of course, we haven't heard the Chief's end of this marital tumult.

THE CITY OF UKIAH seems shabbier by the day, and now we have another Ukiah police department scandal on top of the Sergeant Kevin Murray affair. Murray was fired after it was revealed he was forcing women to engage in sexual relations and a federal suit against him for excessive force is pending.

THE TOWN'S lavishly compensated manager, Sage Sangiacomo, is unaware that his police department seems awfully heavy on ungentlemanly men? Sangiacomo is the Major-Major of civic management — when he's out he's in, and when he's in he's out. Shannon Riley, the assistant city manager for the town of 16,000 fronts for the MIA Sangiacomo. 

LIKE A LOT OF LIBS I've been reflexively opposed to burning trash for power and I've also been reflexively opposed to nuclear power for so long it's tough to shut that reflex down. But nuclear tech has been radically improved since Three Mile Island's meltdown, and technology that burns trash as it converts the daily deluge of waste to energy will be a great boon to mankind. In the Skunk Railroad's Robert Pinoli's interview with the ava, Pinoli says trash-to-energy just may come to the Fort Bragg Headlands because the Skunk's mother company's primary business is trash-to-energy conversion.

THE ONE AND ONLY TIME waste-to-energy has come up in Mendocino County was years ago when a plant was proposed for Willits, which would have burned wood waste. That one was killed by the Willits Environment Center, aka David and Ellen Drell, who led a successful charge against it. Fort Bragg, though, for years, had a little power conversion plant at the mill. Fort Braggers often alleged that on dark, foggy nights the mill threw all kinds of stuff, including tires, into its power boilers.

JADE TIPPETT ON THE SKUNK: “The situation with Sierra Railroad, the GP mill site, and their alleged railroad sovereignty, as well as the vacation rentals, is to be understood as nothing less than domestic corporate colonialism. Fort Bragg is not an isolated example. The same thing is happening in different ways all over the country. The Reagan "revolution," cutting the marginal and capital gains tax rates while decimating middle class, has created a wealthy elite awash in cash, with entitlement to do whatever they, or their asset managers, desire to turn that cash into even more cash. Welcome to the new feudalism, where permanent renter serfdom at the mercy of faceless landlord corporations threatens to become the new reality for the young and working people of our Nation. Couple this with crushing education debt and it's easy to understand the sources of the current political nihilism plaguing millennials. There are political solutions. What is needed is the courage to speak clearly, organize, and go after them.”


“I inspected Bay Area skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) for the California Department of Health. There is very little “heart” in the business and tons of naked greed. I was party to fining and/or closing the worst of them. Sherwood Oaks, in past years (I haven’t been inside there for several years) was one of the best I’ve ever seen, anywhere. I went there as a visitor, not as an inspector. God knows it wasn’t good because it was pretty. It is old, shabby, unattractive and looks better suited to be a doghouse.

To the patient population, that doesn’t matter. They don’t spend their time gazing at the spiffy facade and landscaping. Nice “window dressing” is typically, in nursing homes, a screen for inadequate staffing, inadequate training, and “sweetheart” arrangements with mediocre and greedy doctors and nurses who couldn’t care less about their patients. Disabled patients are tied to their beds and wheelchairs, supposedly to prevent falls, but often simply to restrain them. Ambulatory patients take more attention than restrained or drugged ones. Potent tranquilizers are used to control those active ones.

Aides, kitchen workers, licensed vocational nurses (LVNs), janitorial workers and specialists, like visiting physical and occupational therapists, are all required in specified numbers, based on facility size. Payroll being always the biggest expense, staffing requirements are almost always unmet. SNFs find it cheaper to pay fines than meet requirements. Staffs are usually drawn from the bottom of the labor pool and paid minimum wage. The physician who comes, under contract with the facility, to tend to the patients quite often breezes in, signs patient charts and breezes out, off to the next SNF, to be paid as if they were actually examining and giving care to the patients.

It’s an ugly, ugly racket. It is not driven, in most cases, by any concern for the welfare of the patient population. It’s a cash register, a profit machine and a national disgrace. In my experience, there is never enough oversight, state or federal. Medicaid and Medicare pay much of the tab. Nursing homes, by and large, are there to make owners and corporations a great deal of money by swindling these government programs and their victims, not to mention the taxpayers.

Sherwood Oaks, despite its shabby looks, was, when I visited acquaintances there, free of all those abuses. One woman, who favored western-style outfits, would make a point to say to me (even though I was not there in any official capacity) “Please, please don’t give them a bad report. These people are wonderful!”

Sad to say, field licensing representatives (my former job title) seldom, if ever, hear that from nursing-home patients.

What made Sherwood Oaks different were several things. Ft. Bragg is a small town. People know what’s going on. Word gets out. Families take time to visit convalescing relatives (and, in many cases, act as advocates for them). Alert visitors are more apt to notice bedsores and other complaints than they are to admire fancy lamps in the lobby. They notice when the food is poorly cooked and served and when Aunt Sally never has anything to do, or never seems to get better. Families and patients, when I was asking, commonly gave good reports on Sherwood Oaks.

I once talked to the owner. I expected him to be typically suspicious and hostile to me and indifferent to his patients as individuals. He was not. He took my questions cheerfully and answered them without doubletalk. He knew his patients by name. That’s practically unheard of.

I repeat that these impressions are from years past, and I was then a layman, but lay people (and patients) are, by law, entitled to scrutinize a place and to ask for official inspection reports. Sherwood Oaks was not perfect, but it was head and shoulders above 90-plus percent of Bay Area SNFs and of the industry as a whole. Compared to most places, Sherwood Oaks, when I was there, was a jewel.

Profits and patient care are usually incompatible. Non-profits, as in church-owned facilities, are often way better.

Sherwood Oaks was a shining exception to the ordinary. Closure, or transfer to the business that is, according to the press, sealing a deal with them, will be a disaster. I read up on the outfit reported to be buying them. They should be shut down—yesterday! The very, very rich owner should spend the rest of his days in one of his own facilities.

SAW THIS APPEAL on the MCN chat line: “Elder Climate Action Network. Take a lunch break every Friday from noon to 1 p.m. on the corner of Hwy. 1 (Main St.) and E. Laurel St. in front of Fort Bragg Town Hall! Elders Climate Action Network is building a non-partisan movement committed to changing our nation’s policies – our planet’s changing climate is an emergency affecting all of us. For more information, call 510-459-9448."

WHICH raised (with me anyway) the nut of looming global death as raised recently by Andreas Malm, probably the most prominent among European thinkers who think it's past time to up the ante for destructive forces or, more to the point, past time to consider direct action and armed struggle against the destroyers. It's no secret who they are, and the logic of the multiplying crises translates as the absolute necessity for direct action to stop them before they stop the whole show. Or, as Francis Gooding puts it in a letter to the LRB, “…Yet mainstream climate movements in the West persist in family-friendly demonstrations, pitifully anemic politics and well-mannered civil disobedience, rather than, say, organizing a revolutionary cadre of saboteurs or turning out in their thousands to participate in mass direct actions which, if properly carried out, would be very difficult to prevent.”

YOU COULD almost hear the collective groans that went up over NorCal last Thursday night as the Niners blew a game they should have, could have, won by at least two touchdowns. Jimmy Garoppolo singlehandedly did us in against the Titans in a weirdly uneven performance even for him. Weirder yet was his post-game statement when he was asked how he felt, “Frustrated, I would say. It’s a game; we had an opportunity to go into their place and we got off to a good start, got the lead like we wanted to. We just hit a lull in the middle there. If we don’t hit that lull, I think it’s a totally different game. But that’s football. Stuff happens.” Garoppolo was the lull, but he seems uniquely removed from his responsibility for the loss.

WOULDN'T it be interesting to put a work-day camera on, say, the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors to critique their daily performances as if they were Jimmy Garoppolo? How many hours, and how productively does, say, 4th District Supervisor Dan Gjerde, labor at representing the several thousand citizens of his district? On a busy Monday I'd guess Gjerde puts in maybe a couple of hours on social media before he calls it a day, then tapers off until the weekend. Ditto for his four colleagues.

GOOD NEWS FOR FORT BRAGG: The City of Fort Bragg in Mendocino County will receive $8.8 million for structural lining and reconstruction of 9,250 feet of pipeline that supplies over half the water used by the city, which faced acute water supply challenges earlier this year. The project will strengthen resilience by ensuring reliable delivery of water during future drought events.

REDBEARD'S MAIL. Marilyn Davin Writes: While leafing through the Christmas Eve mail imagine my surprise when I found a Return to Sender letter from the Mendocino County Jail stating that "Your inmate's mail must now be addressed to: 

- Facility Name

- Inmate Name

- Booking Number

- PO Box 30022 PMB 35803

- Durham, NC 27702

Inmate Mail

The returned letter was to William A Evers, aka Redbeard, and it was in response to a letter he wrote to me following our interview at the jail over three weeks ago. As promised, I wrote back to him right away with more questions for him. The address I sent the letter to was verbatim what I copied from the jail website:

When mailing a letter or postcard to an inmate, please address your mail as follows:

Inmate's First and Last Name (Housing unit and inmate # if known)

c/o Mendocino County Correctional Facility

951 Low Gap Road

Ukiah, CA 95482

I included all those things in the address I used, and additionally added Redbeard's inmate number, which he had sent me. Oh, and it took them over three weeks to return the letter to me.

This is not only harassment but a blatant violation of an inmate's right to receive mail. The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation states that this right is addressed in Article 4 of the California Code of Regulations (CCR) and Chapter 5, Article 41, of the Departments Operation Manual. It is also the opinion of the ACLU that an inmate's right to receive mail is enshrined in the U.S Constitution's First Amendment.

This is truly beyond the pale. The powers that be could have forwarded the letter to what appears to be some sort of clearing house in North Carolina just as easily as returning it to me, particularly since the website provides the mailing address that I used.

Inmates have as much right to receive mail as anyone else.

‘DON'T LOOK UP,’ an AVA staffer’s review: “I tried to watch ‘Don't Look Up’ last night but could not sit still for it. It was filled with on-the-nose messaging that was completely artless. Written by smug lazy liberals, it seemed to me. Downward facing thumbs.”


[1] Once upon a time, there were fewer growers, and county drug cops, along with CAMP, were able to at least put a dent in the “problem”. People went to jail for what would now be considered small grows. People I knew. Plants that weren’t hidden under the trees were likely to be detected by aircraft and raided. There came a tipping point, when the odds of getting caught became almost nil, due to the sheer number of growers. The Greenrush was on, people poured in from the cities, prices plummeted. There’s no putting the genie back in the bottle now.

I heard a guy on KMUD, he was a distributor, and had traveled to Oklahoma and met a guy who had just harvested 350,000 lbs.

And that’s just one guy…..

[2] I was thinking just this morning while waking up (I always take a long pause before getting up to let my mind wander and concentrate anything I got overnight in dreams) that the Civil War has already begun. Thing is, it – like the US itself – is GLOBAL now, and people are not yet even cognizant of the “sides” who are fighting. It’s the top 10% or so (the .01% + all their managerial and technical lackeys, or roughly the top 10%) vs. the rest of us, and the bottom 90% for the most part don’t even realize they’re in a war yet.

[3] It is the industrialization of anti vaxxer propaganda that is the true evil. It leads to death. In the UK, this story appears about its first victim- “A relative of the UK’s ‘first Omicron victim’ told LBC today that his stepfather was fit and healthy but died after refusing to get his Covid-19 vaccinations after being taken in by anti-vaxxer “conspiracy theories”.” And this about the first US death- “It’s not clear why the man had not gotten vaccinated or whether he thought that his previous severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection somehow offered him enough protection.”

So if anyone says anything about covid deaths, which are in the hundreds of thousands in the US alone, anti vaxxers accuse them of “fear mongering” but then they repeat the few cases of adverse reactions to vaccines ad nauseum and imply there is a big cover up that somehow they- yes they- have managed to see through. No wonder there is no possibility of rational evaluation. No one can get past anti vaxxer insanity to have them.

[4] Just had a long conversation with a friend who stayed in Colombia after I returned to the US. I’m afraid the Colombia I once knew has been overwhelmed by events— primarily the gulf between the rich and everyone else, with the policia maturing into the force of violence that maintains upper class privilege and the flow of drugs. I first lived in the mountains in the waning days of the Violencia, but that is not the Colombia I wish to return to. The gulf between the rich and everyone else is every bit as great in the US, but the level of wealth built up by decades of being the world’s economic and military rulers means that being poor in the US is nothing like being poor in Colombia. (unless you live under a freeway bridge in the Seattle rain, in which case a Colombian barrio in a land of eternal spring looks like paradise.)

[5] LET'S BE CLEAR. The Build Back Better plan is not a "Let's give people a bunch of money" to be popular bill.. that was the multi-trillion dollar golden enema that Donald Trump gave billionaires during his regime. There isn't a penny in the Build Back Better plan, that doesn't support people getting back to work, getting trained to do the necessary work of the 21st century if we're going to compete with the rest of the world, or empower the health and financial well-being of the middle class to power our nation's economic engine (it is the health of the middle class that moves our economy.)

The vast majority of this bill is paid for by simply repealing the obscene give-away pushed on the backs of the American taxpayers by Donald Trump. Of course this has the billionaires of the nation howling like wounded animals... "How will I ever be able to move up from my 150 foot yacht to a 250 foot yacht, I'll be the laughing stock of Martha's Vineyard?!!!" Y'all will just have to make do...

The nation has been in dire straights... under the mismanagement of a clueless self-serving parasite. Between crashing the economy, causing the worst health crisis in over a century, attempting sedition and still attempting it, committed serial crimes worthy of being impeached twice, and pushing tens of thousands of highly skilled professionals out of Federal and State Governments, so they could be replaced with rubber stamps and boot-licking lackeys, our country is in tough shape. Joe had been nose deep in sewage, and now folks are making waves and tossing sharks in the cesspit. Joe's already accomplished some pretty impressive things, but nobody is talking about any of that. The things happening right now, are happening because we're coming out of 4 years of grotesque mismanagement, and we will have to endure the pain of healing from that injury to our soul, our economy, our global standing, and our international relationships.

Joe is trying to function, against a Republican Party that is stonewalling him, unwilling to even pass a budget extension on debt their guy ran up in the previous administration. A party still paying lip service to the loud cries from that guy that the election was a fraud. The Democratic Party itself, on the verge of splintering because of the tremendous pressure those self-same corporations and billionaires are using to block any progress in moving our country forward.

 Our Republic is 1 minute to midnight, as State Government after State Government is being replaced with new members who promised to give elections to whomever the party wants, regardless of who wins the votes. That would be the end of Democracy. That would be the start of America the Puppet Oligarchy. This has long stopped being a political conversation. Now it's simply existential. Will we continue to be a Democratic Republic or not? The lines are drawn, and the coup is happening in plain sight. All the more shocking. Are we going to take back our birthright, or just watch it die like a reality show where we're all the losers. — Marie Tobias


  1. Bruce Broderick December 29, 2021

    Thanks for including the Mendocino Land Trust statement about the Stinkers

  2. izzy December 29, 2021

    the decline of society…
    No flash mobs looting the retailers here yet, but we have a conglomeration of criminal cartels and independent operators messing things up locally and attracting unsavory characters, thanks in large part to the schizophrenic attempt by government to exploit the “cannabis industry”. The numerous people who go missing around here are likely collateral damage. And the legions of homeless wandering around the county are not a positive social indicator. TV isn’t required to notice this stuff. The majority worried about inflation are suffering the thousand cuts and end result of predatory capitalism, legal or not. Add in a population fractured and polarized around many issues. We’re on a slippery slope, with still a long way to the bottom. War has been the traditional last resort, but that strategy has not gone well lately, even when the odds appeared to be in our favor.

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