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Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Warm Wind | Shasta Moon | Tourist Trash | Skunk Appeal | RR Tunnel | Ed Notes | AV Village | Poetry Submissions | Willits Museum | Contract Renegotiation | Alyssa's Salon | Kite Angels | Waldrop Nabbed | Yesterday's Catch | Voter Guide | Athletic Team | Midlife Realization | News Filter | Corporate Greed | Ukraine | Tucker Torch | White Supremacy | Front Lawns | No Recall | Femme Power | Caspar Bay | Replacement Theory | Union Bike | Abu Akleh | Liberace Cooks | Great Replacement | Logging Camp | Arming Psychos | Sunday Gardening | Bitcoining | Four Victims | Stagecoach | Israeli Execution | Saturday Night

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BREEZY WINDS AND WARMER INTERIOR TEMPERATURES can be expected today and tomorrow. Cooler and drier air will move into the area starting on Thursday, with brisk northerly winds forecast to end the work week. Warmer interior temperatures will return during the weekend. (NWS)

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Sunday night's flower moon over Mt. Shasta, with full lunar eclipse (photo by Jay Martin)

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Adoption of Resolution Committing to Significantly Reduce the Amount of Trash and Litter in Coastal Watersheds Through Enhanced Visitor Education and Outreach in Collaboration With Marin and Sonoma Counties, and in Coordination With Local Jurisdictions, Federal And State Agencies, Tribal Partners and Community Non-profits; and Authorization of the Execution of a Memorandum of Understanding with Marin County, Sonoma County and Leave No Trace to Accomplish this Goal

(Sponsors: Supervisor Williams and Supervisor Gjerde)

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Following an emergency request by Mendocino Railway, the Courts of Appeal issued an order on May 4th suspending the City’s case before Judge Brennan while it reviews his ruling allowing that case to proceed in Mendocino County Superior Court.

The City of Fort Bragg filed a lawsuit in Superior Court, in a misguided attempt to end Mendocino Railway’s status as a public utility, which is regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission (and the federal Surface Transportation Board). The CPUC and the STB stand as an obstacle to the City’s desire to subject Mendocino Railway to its plenary power. As argued in its emergency request to the Court of Appeal, the Superior Court has no jurisdiction to hear challenges to a railroad’s status as a CPUC-regulated railroad (only the CPUC does). Mendocino Railway has asked the Courts of Appeal to reverse Judge Brennan’s erroneous ruling and compel him to dismiss the City’s case. The First Appeal District is expected to rule sometime in June 2022, after it receives further briefing by the parties.

“We are pleased that the Courts of Appeal have stopped the proceedings pending in Judge Brennan’s Court and are reviewing his ruling,” said Robert Pinoli, president of the Mendocino Railway. “However, now that the city council has achieved its objective of derailing the redevelopment of the former mill site, there is no need for lawsuits or to sabotage a loan that will create jobs and create economic activity for the communities of Fort Bragg and Willits. This is an egregious misuse of taxpayer dollars.”

Mendocino Railway, which operates the Skunk Train, contends that the city’s lawsuit, combined with an effort to lobby federal authorities to deny an infrastructure improvement loan, was part of a broader political strategy to place economic pressure on the railway to abandon plans to redevelop it’s property. The $21.5 million U.S. Department of Transportation loan would be used to refurbish rails and a tunnel in order to restore the historical rail connection between Fort Bragg and Willits, allowing increased movement of passengers and freight. The loan has no connection to the abandoned redevelopment project. 

On May 5, 2022, Mendocino Railway announced that the toxic political environment in Fort Bragg has made the redevelopment of the former Georgia Pacific lumber mill infeasible under the city’s current political leadership. The lumber mill that once employed 2,000 workers closed in 2002, and today, the property consists of broken concrete and blighted structures.

“By derailing the redevelopment of the former mill site, the Fort Bragg City Council squandered the best opportunity in 20-years to create quality jobs, new housing and greater coastal access,” said Pinoli. “Inaction and squandered opportunities will be this city council’s legacy. New leadership on the council is needed to restore trust and to bring real economic opportunity to the city.”

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Railroad Tunnel, Noyo River, 1900

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MOST INTERESTING, and telling, endorsement of the entire campaign for Superintendent of Schools is that of Glenn McGourty, 1st District supervisor, who has endorsed incumbent, Michelle Hutchins. Mr. and Mrs. McGourty have served as trustees of the Ukiah School District. If a former Ukiah trustee endorses incumbent Superintendent Hutchins over the candidacy of one of the Ukiah district's many administrators, that endorsement is doubly important for Hutchins because it comes from a couple who know from the inside the suitability of Ukiah's candidate, Ms. Glentzer:


Dear Editor:

I am supporting Michelle Hutchins for Mendocino County Superintendent of Schools. She has demonstrated her competence in the past four years in this role and is the best qualified candidate for the position. 

Superintendent Hutchins will successfully complete her first term as an effective executive and competent leader of a staff of over 175 people, managing programs that support 13,000 students and schools across all 12 school districts in Mendocino County. In contrast, her opponent is a support staff administrator whose duties are limited to one district. 

Contrary to the nonsensical claims made in a mailer recently sent by her opponent, in the past 3.5 years, Superintendent Hutchins has provided leadership during wildfires, widespread power outages, and a pandemic of unprecedented proportions. She was very present in all of those difficult calamities and brought resources and personal support to address them to school districts all around the county. 

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Superintendent Hutchins was very involved in helping county schools and communities mount an effective strategy to the pandemic. I was in many of those meetings with her along with other key health officials and county leaders. 

Personally, Superintendent Hutchins worked with myself and Mendocino County Public Health to organize a vaccine clinic at the MCOE River Campus specifically for the residents of the surrounding Talmage neighborhood where the MCOE office is located. We passed out flyers to all of the immediate neighborhoods in English and Spanish, and generated a great response of 85 people who showed up for the two-hour clinic. The event was very well organized, ran smoothly and had positive outcomes as Mendocino County emerged a leader among rural counties in the state to promptly vaccinate its population. Superintendent Hutchins was extremely positive and supportive in making this and many other events a success. 

Under her leadership, MCOE served as a hub for COVID logistics in Mendocino County and distributed over 45 tons of personal protective equipment and at-home tests. 

Superintendent Hutchins is a champion for ALL students and districts, and has restructured MCOE to be more efficient, effective, and responsive to the changing educational state mandates and needs of school districts across the County. She has recruited a very talented leadership team and staff. She has teamed with the California State Office of Education, state wide politicians, neighboring county offices of education, Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, and other educational leaders to deliver these programs. She is innovative, imaginative and delivers more than the status quo. 

In her previous job as Superintendent of the Anderson Valley School District, she led her schools to very high student achievement on standardized tests and was a standout rural school district with a high number of English Language learners. 

As a former member of the Ukiah Unified Board of Trustees, I can say with confidence that these strategic shifts have finally brought MCOE into the modern era and will better serve districts, students, and taxpayers. 

By contrast, her opponent comes from a district that is still struggling to bring their student achievement up, despite millions of dollars over many years in state grants and numerous consultant efforts to improve test scores. 

Superintendent Hutchins has her eye on the future of our county and has participated with me and many other local leaders in MOVE 2030, an effort by WEST Company to create a strategic plan for building economic capacity in our county’s communities. Her expertise in the subjects of building our student workforce development, digital learning, continuing education for people making career changes, and improving the economic conditions of our county’s communities make her an important contributor to improving the future prospects for students that want to stay here post-graduation, and the financial well-being of all Mendocino County residents. 

Finally, Superintendent Hutchins has a great personality that allows her to work well with others. She has faced adversity personally and professionally, but is resilient and has a positive attitude that also allows her to have empathy for others who face challenges. This quality is very important and helps her be inclusive to all students and staff who may not always be noticed or appreciated for their differences. 

In a time when cyber bullying is so prevalent, when I further reflect on the personal qualities, I want educational leaders to embody and model for children empathy, kindness and intellect. Superintendent Hutchins has integrity and the depth of experience needed to serve in addition to those personal qualities needed to inspire. 

Above all, I hope you will exercise your right to vote in the upcoming election. And I hope that you will join me in re-electing Mendocino County Superintendent of Schools Michelle Hutchins. Learn more about Superintendent Hutchins on her website:


Glenn McGourty 


JOHN MCCOWEN: "Michelle Hutchins was very much the outsider when she was elected Superintendent four years ago. So it's not surprising that her challenger has lined up insider support. The challenger's campaign seems to be based mainly on vague allegations that the incumbent is a bad person doing a bad job. But where are the specifics and why are we only hearing about these so-called problems now? I'm voting to re-elect Michelle Hutchins because I have not heard any credible reason not to support her."

I TRY to keep up with the latest in American fascism but I confess I've got a lot of catching up to do because I can only listen to their main people a few minutes at a time. It's impossible, at least for me, to watch Hannity without wanting to punch him in his fat, smug face. So I compensate by doing a bunch of extra push-ups to purge the violent feeling that overcomes me at the sight and sound of him or Tucker Carlson. Or any of the Fox News line-up. So I wasn't aware of The Great Replacement theory the fascisti are pushing these days. Carlson defined it for me. He said that current U.S. border policy is “designed to change the racial mix of the country. In political terms this policy is called the ‘great replacement,’ the replacement of legacy Americans with more obedient people from faraway countries.” Carlson says that Biden’s policies with regard to the Haitian migrants especially have put the U.S. on a “suicidal” path. In other words, brown immigrants are bad enough but black immigrants are unthinkable.

IN FACT, Biden, insofar as he's aware of what his rudderless administration is doing in any policy area, has sent most of the poor bastards back to the failed state of Haiti. But I laughed at Carlson's reference to “legacy Americans,” i.e., white Americans, as somehow imperiled by darker immigrants while young people of all races by the millions presently marry outside their race, which has happened on a fairly large scale right here in the Anderson Valley as legacy Americans marry second generation Mexican immigrants. On the off-chance the human race survives long-term there won't be legacy Americans, only Americans, and better-looking Anericans, too.

Eclipse as seen from Whipple Street, Fort Bragg (photo by Judy Valadao)

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"Caregiving In The Valley” Forum
Tuesday, May 17th, 3-5 PM
AV Senior Center and via Zoom (see link below - Please let me ( know beforehand you will be attending via Zoom so we know to approve your attendance. This meeting will NOT be recorded)
This much needed forum will present a small sample of different residents who have hired caregivers and local caregivers who will talk about their experiences and both will be available afterwards for questions or a chat. If you are facing the need for additional help in the near future, we hope this event will help you reflect on some of the issues you will be facing. (See our calendar for more info). Contact: Heidi Knott
Join Zoom Meeting — Meeting ID: 434 337 6734 — Passcode: avv

And New:

What's up Wednesday
Wednesdays, May 18th, 25th and so on, 2-4 PM
Anderson Valley Senior Center
Come down to visit with old friends and new while playing games. There will be a rotation by week of board games, card games, charades and possibly hand/needle work and crafts. There will be no food or drink provided but everyone may bring their own drink. Open to all - Vaccination and masks required.
Contact or 707-895-3595, 707-972-5620

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47th Anniversary; 17th consecutive Revival

Submissions due Friday, May 20

Here’s Dan Roberts, awaiting your contribution to this year’s open reading. Submission window closing FRIDAY MAY 20.

Record up to four minutes of your best and send it to OutFarPress@Saber.Net

Use your smartphone, or enlist a friend.

For the third year of the health ceremonials, Dan’s radio broadcast RhythmRunningRiver has been the platform for the Mendocino Spring Poetry Celebration, on KZYX, Mendocino County Public Broadcasting. Beginning JUNE 5, Dan will be matching your poems with the rhythms of World Music. Join the Celebration!

For kindly conducive info including tech advice:

Or email me,

Pursue your Muse! Dan Roberts will happily accept your poems between now and Friday.

— Gordon Black

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THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS is considering closing the Mendocino County Museum in Willits - they currently say for a year, but if they close it for a year, likely it will be difficult to ever reopen it. The Museum is a priceless resource for our town and is also a tourism draw. Please contact our BoS and tell them NO! Very, very little money would be saved by shuttering the Museum but a great deal would be lost! Below are contacts for our BoS. Please contact them and tell to protect our cultural heritage, our town, and our people. 


  • John Haschak (707) 463-4221,
  • Dan Gjerde (707) 463-4221,
  • Ted Williams (707) 463-4221,
  •  Maureen Mulheren, Phone: (707) 463-4221,
  •  Glenn McGourty, Phone: (707) 463-4221,

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Round Valley community, we the Round Valley Teachers Union, would like your support to stop what we believe is unnecessary and frivolous spending of Round Valley Unified School District funds. Today, Monday 5/16/22 the school board will vote on whether or not to allow the current principals Mark Smith and Robert vanBuuren, who are both retiring, to renegotiate their 2021-2022 contracts. This is so that their salaries this year will match the new pay scale that has been negotiated for the incoming principals next year. The current principals already received a raise this year. They negotiated their current raise and agreed to their 2021-2022 contracts. We estimate this renegotiation would cost the district about $70,000 and feel that this extra pay is completely unnecessary. If you also feel that this spending is a waste of precious community resources, please contact our elected school board members to express your discontent. The current board members are Peter Bauer, Amanda Britton, Lew Chichester, Cynthia O’Ferrall, and Tony Tucker If you can please also come to the school board meeting tonight to show your support and share your concerns, 5:30pm 5/16/2022 at the high school and on the RVUSD facebook page livestream. Thank you Round Valley.

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Elaine Kalantarian writes: "Alyssa Jose has been cutting my hair for well over 10 years, and she is the best hair stylist I've ever known, and the most fun to be around as well. Her full-service salon is warm, welcoming and comfortable, a friendly, down-to-earth place completely devoid of that off-putting snootiness and artifice of too many beauty salons. Alyssa loves what she does, and possesses the skill of a real artist — which she is, as you can see in the pet portrait below. She is excellent with both men's and women's cuts, as well as children. Her salon is on Talmage Road, just a couple of minutes east of Hwy 101 in Ukiah."

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Terri Lockwood began her art career painting with acrylics in 1984. Ten years later, she hit upon what was to become her trademark: angels on kites. For this show, she has created several Ukraine-themed works, the proceeds from which will be donated to benefit the long-suffering Ukrainians through the World Central Kitchen.

Come join us for Terri's show on First Friday, June 3. Light refreshments served. Masks optional.

Event: Featured Artist Show Opening at Edgewater Gallery
Who: Terri Lockwood, collage artist and angel kite maker extraordinaire
When: Friday, June 3, from 5-8, and continuing through June 28.
Where: Edgewater Gallery, 356 N. Main Street, Fort Bragg

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CONVICTED MURDERER WANTED IN WASHINGTON STATE For Kidnapping and Assault Caught in Mendocino County

53-year-old Jack Waldrop has a history of violence. In March 1998, he strangled and beat his then-girlfriend, Angela Walker, to death. A jury found him guilty of manslaughter and he served 21 years in an Oregon state prison for the crime. 

After being released from prison, Waldrop made his way to Washington and began to date a 63-year-old woman he now stands accused of kidnapping and assaulting in Benton County on March 11, 2022. She escaped by locking herself in a gas station bathroom after which he fled.…

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CATCH OF THE DAY, May 16, 2022

JAMES BELDEN III, Ukiah. Domestic battery, suspended license for DUI.


YOVANI CHAVEZ-CHAVEZ, Ukiah. DUI, suspended license, failure to appear.

BAILEY COMER, Fort Bragg. Possession or control of matter depicting sexual conduct of person under age 18.

LORENZO CRUZ, Ukiah. Vandalism, probation revocation.

MICHAEL DAVIS, Rio Dell/Ukiah. Controlled substance, under influence, paraphernalia, county parole violation, failure to appear.

Martinez, Ogawa, Ortiz

MYA MARTINEZ, Talmage. Harboring wanted felon, resisting.

CARLOS OGAWA, Fort Bragg. More than an ounce of pot.

OCTAVIO ORTIZ, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, resisting.

Saaverda, Simili, Thomas

JAVIER SAAVERDA, Willits. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

LILY SIMILI, Fort Bragg. Taking vehicle without owner’s consent, attempt to acquire stolen property, firearm theft.

ANTONIO THOMAS, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, petty theft merchandise. 

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TOM'S CHOICES, Voting recommendations

Hello. Lots of locals have asked me for voting advice for this current primary election, so here below are my preferences. I offer two slates: listed first after each office below are all Democrats, mostly incumbents, for folks who want to vote a straight Dem ballot. And listed second are Progressive alternatives, for folks who believe the Democrats are too corporate and need challengers on their Left. It’s safe to vote progressive now because the Dems hold all state offices already and this is only the Primary election, with the final vote coming in November. I hope this is of help to you. Please do vote! 

— Tom Wodetzki

GOVERNOR: Dem: Gavin Newsom; Prog: Joel Ventresca (Bernie Democrat)

LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR: Dem: Elani Kounalakis. Prog: Mohammad Arif (Peace & Freedom Party)

SECRETARY OF STATE: Dem: Shirley Weber; Prog: Gary N. Blenner (Green Party)

CONTROLLER: Dem: Steve Glazer; Prog: Laura Wells (Green Party)

TREASURER: Dem: Fiona Ma; Prog: Meghann Adams (Peace & Freedom)

ATTORNEY GENERAL: Dem: Rob Bonta; Prog: Dan Kapelovitz (Green)

INSURANCE COMMISSIONER: Dem: Ricardo Lara; Prog: Veronika Fimbres

MEMBER, STATE BOARD OF EQUALIZATION, 2ND DISTRICT: Dem: Sally J. Leiber; Prog: no Green or P&F candidates

US SENATE, FULL TERM: Dem: Alex Padilla; Prog: James Conn (Green)

US SENATE, PARTIAL TERM: Dem: Alex Padilla; Prog: no Green or P&F candidates offered

US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVE, 2ND DISTRICT: Dem: Jared Huffman. Prog: no Green or P&F candidates offered

STATE SENATOR: Dem: Mike McGuire; Prog: no Green or P&F candidates offered

MEMBER OF STATE ASSEMBLY, 2ND DISTRICT: Dem: Jim Wood; Prog: no Green or P&F candidates offered

JUDGE OF THE SUPERIOR COURT: Only one candidate running: Victoria A. Shanahan



Tough choice, leaning toward incumbent Michelle Hutchins, endorsed by the entire County Board of Education, State Senator Mike McGuire, Assemblymember Jim Wood, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurman, District Attorney David Eyster and retired Sheriff Tom Allman.

The challenger Nicole Glentzer is endorsed by County Supervisors Ted Williams and Maureen Mulheren, Fort Bragg Unified Superintendent Becky Walker, Ukiah Unified Superintendent Deb Cubin [sic: Kubin], former Ed Superintendent. Paul Tichinin and the County Federation of School Employees.





SHERIFF-CORONER: Matthew C. Kendall

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Fort Bragg High Athletic Team with Weights, 1910

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Part of the Midlife Crisis maturation stage is the anxiety causing realization that the world ship you assumed was under the charge of a legitimate managerial hierarchy was really not under control but under the direction of a bunch of greedy idiots. I remember my realization of this fact was very unsettling. Age 35 or so.

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NEWS FROM UKRAINE tends to be either over-covered or under-covered by the media. The over-covered news may be true but is usually selective and I find it impossible to tell if some skirmish is typical or atypical of the way the war is going. Does a Ukrainian success here or a Russian retreat mean one side or the other is winning or is there a stalemate?

Crucial news about the war is often lacking – such as what the Russian security elite are thinking about Putin’s performance as a war leader – simply because reliable information is difficult to obtain.

But some important facts about the war are concealed simply because they are lost in the great torrent of information that pours out of Ukraine and its neighbours. Nobody has the time and patience to sample it all and detect the nuggets amid the repetitious and the dross. This article and this article could not be more public in one sense since they appeared in the New York Times and contain original reportage and analysis, but I wonder how many people read them?

— Patrick Cockburn

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Ukraine's defense ministry said that 264 defenders of the Azovstal plant in Mariupol had been evacuated to separatist-held territory in Ukraine's breakaway Donbas region

The evacuees include 53 badly wounded Ukrainian troops, as well as 211 others

The defenders of the steel plant have been praised by Ukrainian leaders for distracting Russia for weeks in its offensive against eastern Ukraine

"Ukraine needs Ukrainian heroes alive," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in an address to the nation early Tuesday morning

Ukraine's military leadership said the Azovstal plant's defenders forced Russia to keep around 20,000 troops in Mariupol, preventing them from rapidly capturing other parts of the country

Sweden has joined Finland in formally announcing it will seek NATO membership, but Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan says he will veto the bids, accusing the two Nordic countries of harboring terrorists

President Putin has warned that placing missiles or creating permanent bases in either Sweden or Finland would provoke a response - while maintaining the proposed memberships represent “no direct threat” to Russia

Ukrainian troops defending the northern city of Kharkiv have pushed Russian troops back to within 4km of the Russian border, a US defense official says

Britain’s most senior military officer says Ukraine is winning the war. Admiral Sir Tony Radakin said its future as an independent country was guaranteed

McDonald's and Renault are both exiting the Russian market following the invasion of Ukraine

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by James Kunstler

There’s apparently no question that one Peyton Gendron, 18, went out hunting for black people in Buffalo, NY, carefully documenting his crime every step of the way, from penning a book-length manifesto, to running reconn on the Topps Supermarket scene-of-the-crime, to mounting a GoPro video cam on his forehead to record his wicked act, which resulted in 10 persons shot dead and three more wounded.

Gendron is a gift to the “Joe Biden” regime, which needed evidence for its claim that America is infested with “white supremacists,” who, “the president” has stated repeatedly, add up to the “greatest threat” the country faces. Will the dead of Buffalo serve as this year’s George Floyd, setting up a new summer of riots sanctioned tacitly by the party in charge? Who knows? For sure it will galvanize the likes of Alejandro Mayorkas (Dept. of Homeland Security) and Nina Jankowicz (Disinfo Governance Board chief) in their efforts to cancel anyone right-of-center on the political transect and normalize the suppression of speech.

As with most issues these days, though, the official narrative is out-of-synch with reality. What we have in America is mayhem and murder going every which way racially. The day after Gendron shot up the Topps, an as-yet-unnamed Asian man in his 60s shot up a Taiwanese church near the California Disneyland, killing one and critically wounding four, the victims all elderly Asians. And the same night as the Buffalo massacre, 23 people were wounded in three sequential shoot-outs around the Milwaukee Bucks basketball arena in that city. (Note poor marksmanship.) Just a few weeks ago, a black maniac named Frank James, 60, shot up a Brooklyn subway car, wounding ten people of various races. The shooter had posted many diatribes against whites, Hispanics, and even black people on Facebook. The news media stuffed that story down their memory holes inside of 48 hours.

And, of course, there was the event in late November 2021 starring felon and mental case Darrell Brooks, Jr., 39, deliberately plowing a Ford Escape SUV into Waukesha, Wisconsin’s, annual Christmas parade, killing six white people and injuring 62, including many children. Brooks had a police rap-sheet 50 pages long and had put up many posts on social media calling for violence against white people, even hailing Adolf Hitler for persecuting the Jews. He pleaded not guilty and his trial is scheduled for October. The newspapers and cable TV stations dropped the story after a couple days.

“Joe Biden” will travel to Buffalo Tuesday to offer his condolences to the families of the Topps shooting victims. (He did not travel to Waukesha last November, or New York in April.) It looks like the newspapers and cable news outfits will run with the Buffalo story a while longer, milking it to feed the narrative, which is that only the Democratic Party cares about black people and can save them from “white supremacy.” This time, though, the harder they push, the more minds may revolt.

This is not 2020. The public may be better inoculated now against government gaslighting and mind-fuckery than they are against Covid-19 viruses. As Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) noted last week in his colloquy with Secretary Mayorkas, “Do you know who the greatest propagator of disinformation in the history of the world is? The U.S. government.” Senator Paul is onto something. In the course of that hearing, he asked Mr. Mayorkas whether talk about Covid 19 on social media might be subject to official “disinformation” action by his agency.

“I’ve said a million times that cloth masks don’t work; YouTube takes me down,” Senator Paul said. “They’re a private company. I can have that beef with them. What about you? You’re going to look at that? I often say that natural immunity from having had the infection is equal to the vaccine or better. You’re going to take that down?” Rand Paul is a licensed physician, by the way, and Alejandro Mayorkas is not.

Mr. Mayorkas answered that someone might claim that vaccination centers “are actually peddling fentanyl. Now, should I sit back and take that, or should I actually disseminate accurate information?” he asked.

Have you noticed something else pretty strange interesting these days? In all the reportage about Ukraine, there has been absolutely no mention of Covid-19 in connection with the disorders of war, where, you’d think, hunger, cold, injury, and filth would compromise many immune systems. Weird, a little bit, huh? Did it just cease to exist?

“White supremacy” is the “Joe Biden” regime’s all-purpose shield against the consequences of its insults to reality, including its role instigating that war in Ukraine, its creation of the entire Covid-19 fiasco from the Wuhan lab to present, its policies that induce reckless monetary inflation, its willful neglect of border enforcement, and its monumental corruption. Watch them try to run with it.

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I have lived in San Francisco’s Mission District for 25 years and remember the time before it gentrified. Car break-ins happened all the time. Shoplifting and occasional robberies were part of our corner store’s cost of doing business. I had to be careful walking at night to avoid the risk of robbery.

Nobody blamed the district attorney or the cops for the problem. But now every crime in San Francisco is somehow District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s fault. In reality, crime is socially caused, and locking more people up will not stop it. Prison turns young people into career criminals and should be used only for the worst cases, as Boudin is doing. Vote no on the Proposition H recall. 

David Spero

San Francisco

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I am trolled all the time by someone/something pretending to be a saucy young lady flirting, obviously trying to prey on the youthful fantasies of vulnerable, lonely, older men, if I engage for a moment I will often; just in case it’s a real human… admonish her not to debase herself like this, surely there are better uses for her female power, the conversation usually ends…

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Caspar Bay, 1925

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by Heather Cox Richardson 

Sunday, an 18-year-old white man murdered 10 people and wounded three others with an AR-15. The shooter traveled more than 200 miles to get to a predominantly Black neighborhood, where he put on heavy body armor and live streamed his attack as he gunned down people grocery shopping. Eleven of those he shot were Black.

The Buffalo Police Commissioner, Joseph Gramaglia, said, “The evidence that we have uncovered so far makes no mistake that this is an absolute racist hate crime. It will be prosecuted as a hate crime. This is someone who has hate in their heart, soul and mind.”

Before his attack, the shooter published a 180-page screed on Google Drive. It is mostly a list of his weaponry, but in it he also explained his belief in what is known as the “great replacement theory,” embraced by white nationalists. This is the idea that white people are losing economic, cultural, and political power to Black people and other people of color. The name is usually associated with a French agitator who argued in a 2011 book that immigrants were destroying European culture, but the theory that an “other” is destroying traditional society has roots stretching far back in European history. In the twenty-first century, that theory has launched right-wing political parties and shootings around the world.

But the Buffalo shooter’s ramblings drew not only from the European theory—although there is plenty of that in his 180 pages of racism and anti-Semitism. They also drew from America’s own version of a theory of replacement.

That theory comes out of the 1870s and was explicitly connected to voting.

In 1867, Congress began the process of recognizing the right of Black people to have a say in their government. In the Military Reconstruction Act, it called for conventions in former Confederate states to write new state constitutions and permitted Black southerners to register to vote to choose delegates to those conventions. White supremacists scoffed at the idea that formerly enslaved people and those white men willing to work with them could produce coherent constitutions.

When their constitutions not only were coherent, but made adjustments to give more representation to poorer white men than the prewar constitutions had provided, white supremacists set out to make sure voters did not ratify the new constitutions. Needing to avoid the U.S. Army, still stationed in the South to protect Black people and their white allies, the white supremacists dressed up in white sheets to look like dead Confederate soldiers (no one was fooled) and tried to terrorize voters to keep them from the polls.

It didn’t work. Voters ratified the new constitutions, which guaranteed Black voting. Congress readmitted the southern states to the Union, but not until they ratified the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. That crucially important amendment dissolved the state laws discriminating against Black Americans. It established that Black people were U.S. citizens and guaranteed that the U.S. government would see to it that no state could take away the rights of any citizen without the due process of law.

In 1870, white politicians in Georgia tried to undermine their new state constitution. The American people then ratified the Fifteenth Amendment protecting the right of Black men to vote. Congress also created the Department of Justice to enable the federal government to enforce the Fourteenth Amendment, which it promptly did. Attorney General Amos Akerman, a former Confederate who had become a Republican, oversaw more than 1000 cases against the Ku Klux Klan.

With the federal government holding them to account for their racist attacks on Black Americans, southern white supremacists began to argue that their objections to Black equality were actually about voting. By 1871, they argued that Black men voted for leaders who promised roads and hospitals and schools. Those social investments would require tax levies, and since the Black population was poor almost by definition after enslavement, those taxes would fall almost entirely on the white men who owned property. In this telling, Black voting was essentially a redistribution of wealth from those with money to those without, from white men to Black men. It was socialism.

White supremacists began to say that they objected to Black voting and to the governments Black people elected not on racial grounds, but on economic ones. They promised to “redeem” the South from the profligate state governments that they said were bleeding tax dollars out of white landowners to provide services for the poor, generally characterized as Black, although there was no racial monopoly on poverty in the post—Civil War South.

In 1876, the “Redeemers” took over the southern states, thanks partly to the rhetoric that made them sound reasonable to northern observers and largely to the violence that enabled them to keep Black men from the polls. The “Solid South” would stay Democratic until Arizona Republican senator Barry Goldwater, running for president on a platform that called for the federal government to leave states’ racial discrimination alone, won five deep southern states in 1964.

The violence of the 1876 election, along with fears of what their lives would look like in its wake, led Black Americans to leave the South in a movement known as the Exodus. In 1879 and 1880, about 20,000 Black southerners went west to Kansas, Oklahoma, and Colorado. “[T]he whole South…had got into the hands of the very men that held us slaves,” one recalled, “and we thought that the men that held us slaves was holding the reins of government over our heads…. [and] there was hope for us and we had better go.”

About two thousand of those migrants went to Indiana.

Indiana was a contested state in which the Republican and Democratic parties traded power. In 1876, it had gone to the Democrats by a few thousand votes.

When Black Americans began to come to their state, Indiana Democrats immediately howled that the Republicans were importing Black migrants to shift the state back toward the Republicans in the 1880 election. Their clamor was loud enough to cause a Senate investigation. The Democratic majority on the select committee concluded that the Republicans must have induced the Black southerners to leave their region because there was well-paid work and no violence in the South; Republicans retorted that if they were really trying to flood the electoral system, they would have left Black Americans where they were.

But the conspiracy theory took root. White Hoosier Democrats met Black migrants with showers of rocks and vowed to “clean out all the gawd damn n***ers in the county before the [1880] election.” After a political rally in Rockport, Indiana, Democrats attacked local Black inhabitants, shouting: “Kill them, kill them.” After they shot Uriah Webb, one rioter stood over his body and said, “One vote less,” while the others cheered Democratic presidential candidate Winfield Scott Hancock.

Racial hostility kept the Black population of Indiana small, but it also fed the cultural and social discrimination that made Indiana the beating heart of the resurgent Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s. Under violent con man David Curtis Stephenson, who raped, mutilated, and murdered a female state employee, the Indiana Ku Klux Klan developed the idea of “100% Americanism,” which argued for a hierarchy of races in which the white race was uppermost. Immigrants and Black Americans, that theory said, were destroying traditional America.

That argument has poisoned American politics since the 1870s. Yesterday, the Buffalo shooter echoed the modern European great replacement theory, but he also echoed the racial “socialist” argument of the U.S. He railed against Black Americans, whom he wildly insisted take, on average, $700,000 apiece from white Americans. He urged those who thought like him not to pay taxes, which he said would be wasted on such people. Then he warned white Americans not to become a political minority because minorities are never treated well.

Today’s Republican politicians, including Elise Stefanik of New York, the third ranking Republican in the House of Representatives, have pushed the great replacement theory for years and even after yesterday’s massacre have refused to denounce it. That theory is based in racial hate, but it is not only about racial hate. It is also about politics, and today Republicans are using it to create a one-party state.

“I know that the left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical if you use the term 'replacement,' if you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate, the voters now casting ballots, with new people, more obedient voters from the Third World,” Fox News Channel personality Tucker Carlson, who is one of the country’s leading proponents of the great replacement theory, said on his show. “But they become hysterical because that's what's happening actually. Let's just say it: That's true.”

It was not true in 1879, it is not true now, and people making this argument have blood on their hands.

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* * *


by Mouin Rabbani

Shireen Abu Akleh, a veteran al-Jazeera journalist, was a fixture on Palestinian and Arab TV screens for more than two decades. Intrepid, sympathetic, intelligent and trustworthy, she had reported on developments in the occupied territories since the late 1990s. She was shot dead by the Israeli military in the early morning of 11 May. There was shock, grief and outrage throughout Palestine and the Middle East. Israel has killed more than forty-five journalists since 2000, but the case of Abu Akleh has taken the practice to an entirely new level.

The facts of the matter are not in doubt. On her last morning, Abu Akleh, along with several colleagues, all clearly identifiable as members of the press, went to the Jenin refugee camp in the northern West Bank to report on Israel’s latest armed raid. There was no crossfire, and no fighting in or near the area where the reporters set up to do their job. From a distance of approximately 150 meters, an Israeli military sniper fired a single bullet at the exposed area between Abu Akleh’s flak jacket and helmet. A second reporter, Ali al-Samudi, was wounded by a single bullet to the back, as was – in what is now standard Israeli military procedure – a Palestinian resident who tried to come to their rescue.

Whether the sniper was acting on his own initiative or following orders, and whether those responsible were aware of Abu Akleh’s identity, remains unclear, though snipers as a rule shoot after receiving authorization. She had been a thorn in the military’s side for years, and had expressed concern she might be targeted.

Israel at first claimed that Abu Akleh – a US citizen – had been killed by one of ‘dozens’ of Palestinian gunmen ‘firing wildly’, and circulated, as ‘evidence’, a video clip of Palestinians letting off rounds. But geolocation reviews of this and other footage confirmed that, unlike the Israeli sniper who killed her, the nearest Palestinian gunmen lacked not only a line of sight but weapons accurate enough to hit three individuals with three bullets. More to the point, Abu Akleh’s surviving colleagues were emphatic that they had been fired on by Israeli soldiers, whom they could clearly see, without warning or provocation.

Israel called for a joint investigation with the Palestinian Authority, while demanding sole custody of the bullet that killed Abu Akleh. Yet Israeli investigations – routinely announced, rarely conducted, and never transparent or impartial – have been dismissed by human rights organizations the world over as exercises to protect the impunity of perpetrators and thwart accountability. Its options narrowing, Israel allowed that, pending further investigation, it was now uncertain who killed Abu Akleh, but confident it could not have been a deliberate act by its army of occupation.

The same day, in a version of a scene that has played out with disturbing regularity in the occupied Palestinian territories since 1967, Israeli forces stormed into the Abu Akleh family home in Jerusalem where mourners had gathered, physically assaulting a number of them and tearing down Palestinian flags.

Abu Akleh’s funeral procession on 13 May was the largest in East Jerusalem since the burial of the political leader Faisal Husseini at the Haram al-Sharif in 2001, at the height of the second intifada. From the moment her coffin left St Joseph’s Hospital on its way to the Cathedral of the Annunciation in the Old City, police attacked the cortège, firing teargas and stun grenades at the huge assembly of mourners, beating the pallbearers, and going berserk at the sight of every Palestinian flag – including one forcibly removed from the hearse. With extraordinary fortitude, her coffin was somehow kept aloft by those who had come to ensure she would be buried with the same dignity her reporting had extended to them. The shocking images were transmitted around the world. In her death as in her broadcasting, Abu Akleh continued to reveal the realities of the Israeli occupation.

When the procession, brutalized but unbowed, at last arrived at the cathedral, Israeli police demanded to know the faith of individual mourners, refusing Muslims entry in an effort to abort what had become an unmistakably national commemoration. While Israel once more sought to divide those it dominates, the leaders of Jerusalem’s various Christian churches, often fiercely protective of their differences, all rang their bells together as Abu Akleh’s coffin left the cathedral to be buried beside her parents in Mount Zion Cemetery. True to form, the Israeli police that evening cynically claimed they had acted only ‘so that the funeral could proceed in accordance with the wishes of the family’.

There will be no justice for Shireen Abu Akleh under the prevailing circumstances. With the active support of the United States, and no less active acquiescence of Europe, Israel is right to believe it can go on killing without consequence. It will remain free to target all Palestinians, including journalists and medical workers, including those who hold US or European citizenship. Just as Israeli ‘investigations’ are designed to pre-empt accountability, statements by Western leaders and officials – even those that acknowledge she was killed rather than ‘died’, and was killed by a sniper rather than ‘clashes’ – are designed to substitute for rather than ensure a meaningful response. Washington, London and Brussels may not have Abu Akleh’s blood on their hands, but they have helped place a target on the back of the next journalist to be murdered by Israel’s army of colonial occupation.

(London Review of Books)

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* * *


by David Rosen

On May 14, 2022, Payton Gendron, of Conklin, NY, drove some 200 miles to Buffalo armed with a high-powered assault rifle and bulletproof body-armor and killed 10 people and wounded three others; 11 victims were Black and two white.

Pres. Joe Biden lamented, “A racially motivated hate crime is abhorrent to the very fabric of this nation.” He added: “Any act of domestic terrorism, including an act perpetrated in the name of a repugnant white nationalist ideology, is antithetical to everything we stand for in America.”

The shooter livestreamed the attack on the streaming service Twitch and apparently issued a 180-page manifesto both of which have been withdrawn. The manifesto’s first page was marked by the neo-Nazi symbol known as a “sonnenrad” (aka “sunwheel” or “black sun”).

Gendron is said to have been inspired by Brenton Tarrant who livestreamed himself killing 51 people in March 2019 at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. Tarrant released a 74-page manifesto – approximately 15,430 words — on called The Great Replacement – Toward a New Society We March Ever Forwards.

* * *

Belief in the Great Replacement has increasingly become an accepted theory, a fact of life, among Trump supporters and many Christian conservatives. Robert Pape and his associates at the University of Chicago’s Project on Security and Threats (CPOST) note in the revealing study, “Understanding American Domestic Terrorism,” that the belief involves “the idea that minorities will have more rights than whites ….”

The CPOST study called it “a key driver” of the “committed insurrectionists” who stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021. Many white Americans, especially men, believe they are being “replaced” by women, African Americans, Jews and the growing number – and diversity – of immigrates who’ve settled in the U.S. over the last quarter century. Pape found that “63 percent of the 21 million adamant insurrectionists in the country believe in the ‘Great Replacement.’”

An October 2021 survey by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) mirrors the CPOST findings. People were asked whether “God intended America to be a new promised land where European Christians could create a society that could be an example to the rest of the world.” A majority (52%) of white evangelical Protestants said they completely or mostly agree. The opinions of other religious groups are illuminating — 46 percent Hispanic Protestants agreed, with nonwhite Protestants (38%), white Catholics (37%), Hispanic Catholics (35%) and white mainliners (34%). Agreement shrinks among those targeted by the Great Replacement — Jewish Americans (27%), Black Protestants (26%), other non-Christians (15%) and the religiously unaffiliated (11%).

The belief in the Great Replacement has been promoted by conservative media and politicians. Months before the January 6th attack, Fox TV host Tucker Carlson ranted on-air about it. “In political terms,” he said, “this policy is called ‘the great replacement,’ the replacement of legacy Americans with more obedient people from far-away countries.” “They brag about it all the time,” he added, “but if you dare to say it’s happening they will scream at you with maximum hysteria.”

In October 2018, Fox News host Laura Ingraham argued, “your views on immigration will have zero impact and zero influence on a House dominated by Democrats who want to replace you, the American voters, with newly amnestied citizens and an ever increasing number of chain migrants.” In addition, numerous Republican politicians have invoked the concept, including Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA), Rep. Brian Babin (R-TX) and Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick. More troubling, white nationalists who participated in the 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville (VA) shouted the slogans, “You Will Not Replace Us” and “Jews Will Not Replace Us.”

* * *

Renaud Camus, a French philosopher and writer, coined the concept, “Great Replacement” in his 2011 book, Le Grand Remplacement. Camus was preoccupied with Muslim immigration to Europe and his theory that Muslims — and other non-white populations — had a much higher birth rate than whites. The Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs notes, “the great replacement … argues that white Christian populations are under threat of extinction due to (Muslim, non-white) mass migration and declining birthrates, both promoted by a global elite (often coded as Jewish).”

Dora Apel argues in The Migrant Image: Fear of ‘Replacement’ and the Resurgence of White Nationalism, “There are a variety of sources for replacement theory, which has been expressed in Europe, North America, South Africa, Russia, and Australia, including the neo-Nazi concept of ‘white genocide,’ which refers primarily to contraception and abortion ….”

Anders Breivik, a Norwegian far-right nationalist, was the first mass murderer inspired by Camus and fears of the Great Replacement. In July 2011, he killed 77 people in Norway. He first detonated a car bomb outside the prime minister’s office in Oslo, killing eight people, and then drove to Utoya island where, dressed as a police officer, he killed 69 people, most of them teenagers attending a Labour Party youth camp. The New Jersey’s Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJ-OHAP) report found that Breivik “has been the inspiration for multiple white supremacist extremists ….”

Hours before Breivik started the killings, he published in English a 1,500-page manifesto on the internet, “2083 – A European Declaration of Independence.” About 700 pages of the manifesto is devoted to attacking Muslims. One excerpt suggests Breivik’s vision:

“The new ‘conservative order’ should (once consolidations of Western and/or Eastern European cultural conservative military tribunals have been established) prepare for mass deportations of all Muslims living in Europe. The first step will be the construction of huge transit zones.”

He went further, arguing, “We need to create an environment where the practice of Islam is made difficult. Muslim citizens should be forced to either accept our secular ways or leave if they desire sharia.”

Breivik’s killings and manifesto inspired a series of other mass killings. One of them was Robert Bowers. On October 27, 2018, he entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA, yelling, “All Jews must die.” Armed with an assault rifle and several handguns, Bowers opened fire upon the Sabbath congregants, killing 11 and wounding six others, including four police officers. When captured, Bowers said he “wanted all Jews to die” and that Jews “were committing genocide against his people.” Another was the New Zealander Brenton Tarrant.

Breivik also inspired John Earnest who, on April 27, 2019, killed one and injured three at a synagogue in Poway, CA. In a letter he released online, Earnest claimed that Jews were responsible for the genocide of “white Europeans.” He wrote [#64]:

“I hate anyone who seeks the destruction of my race. Spics and niggers are useful puppets for the Jew in terms of replacing Whites. Of course, they aren’t intelligent enough to realize that the Jew is using them and they will be enslaved if Europeans are eliminated. Do they actively hate my race? Yes, I hate them. Are they in my nation but do not hate my race? I do not hate them, but they aren’t staying. Are they out of my nation and do not hate my race? Fine by me.”

Still another inspired by Breivik was Patrick Crusius who killed 23 people and wounded almost two dozen others at a Walmart store on August 3, 2019, in El Paso, TX. In the manifesto posted on 8chan shortly before the attack, he stated: “in general, I support the Christchurch shooter and his manifesto.” He added:

“My whole life I have been preparing for a future that currently doesn’t exist. The job of my dreams will likely be automated. Hispanics will take control of the local and state government of my beloved Texas, changing policy to better suit their needs.”

Crusius concludes, warning: “My death is likely inevitable. If I’m not killed by the police, then I’ll probably be gunned down by one of the invaders. Capture in this case if far worse than dying during the shooting because I’ll get the death penalty anyway. Worse still is that I would live knowing that my family despises me. This is why I’m not going to surrender even if I run out of ammo.” He claimed that he was “simply defending my country from cultural and ethnic replacement brought on by an invasion.”

* * *

In the 1850s, the U.S. was besieged by the Know-Nothing movement that railed against the then-new racial and religious threat, Irish Catholics. Irish Catholics were then considered “non-white” as were Italian Catholic “wops” (i.e., “without papers”) and Eastern European Jews. Chinese immigrants were also targeted. Drawn to the West Coast of the U.S. in the wake of the 1840s California gold rush, 325 Chinese arrived at the San Francisco’s customhouse in 1849; three years later, the number of Chinese immigrants jumped to more than 20,000.

However, by the mid-1870s, the gold rush was over, and the U.S. was plunged into a depression with nearly a quarter of San Francisco’s workforce unemployed. Amidst the fury, John Bigler, the California governor, ranted against the “coolie race.” This fueled racist — and often violent – attacks against the Chinese population throughout the West Coast, including San Francisco, Tacoma, Seattle and other cities. The anti-Chinese rage culminated in with the adoption of Chinese Exclusion Act of 1862.

A century-plus later, Trump played the Great Replacement card in his two campaigns for the presidency. He linked China and Chinese Americans to the Covid pandemic referring to it as the “Chinese Virus” and “Kung Flu,” fueling numerous racist attacks on Chinese people. Prior to his 2016 presidential run, he railed against Mexicans riding the escalator at Trump Tower: “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.” He denounced non-documented Latinx immigrants fleeing violence and persecution as an “invasion.”

Today’s Know-Nothings are represented by race nationalists like Richard Spencer. In “The Charlottesville Statement,” published on August 11, 2017, to coincide with the Charlottesville “Unite the Right” rally, he insisted: “Race is real. Race matters. Race is the foundation of identity.” He further argued: “’White’ is shorthand for a worldwide constellation of peoples, each of which is derived from the Indo-European race, often called Aryan. ‘European’ refers to a core stock—Celtic, Germanic, Hellenic, Latin, Nordic, and Slavic—from which related cultures and a shared civilization sprang.”

Spencer and other race-nationalists champion “the ideal of a white ethno-state — and it is an ideal — is something that I think we should think about in the sense of what could come after America.” He also declared, “We [white people] conquered this continent. … Whether it’s nice to say or not, we won and we got to define what America means and we got to define what this continent means.” He warned, “America, at the end of the day, belongs to white men.”

The Buffalo shooter, Payton Gendron, along with white Christian conservative backers of Trump who adhere to the Great Replacement theory, fear that America’s white nationhood is being superseded. Black Americans, together with other people of color — especially new immigrants, be they Latinx or Asian, as well as Jews and Muslims — will “replace” them. And, as the 2020 Census documents, they are being superseded. It seems that as their relative proportion of the U.S. population shrink, white rage increases.

In the 2020 census, 34 million Americans checked off the “Two or More Races” box when listing their racial identity – a decade earlier, nine million Americans did so. That’s a 276 percent increase! As the American Prospect points out, “That reflects the rise of cross-racial coupling and resultant childbirths, of course, but it probably also reflects more Americans’ willingness to acknowledge racially mixed parentage or ancestry.”

The 2020 Census makes clear that the demographic clock is ticking against white conservatives – and they know it! The racial/ethnic composition of the country is changing and, by 2050, the U.S. will be a “majority-minority” country, with white non-Hispanics making up less than half of the total population. Equally critical, the U.S. is becoming an ever-increasing urban nation with about 83 percent of the population living in cities. Rural America is losing it population to more attractive urban centers, most often supporting Democrats.

We live during an historical moment that may be best expressed by a line from Bob Dylan’s “Ballad of a Thin Man” on the 1965 classic album, Highway 61 Revisited:

“Because something is happening here

but you don’t know what it is

Do you, Mr. Jones?”

Yes, “something is happening” – it’s happened before and is it’s happening again. The make-up — the demographic composition — of the country is changing. For many, especially racial nationalists, so too what it means to be an American. And they are resisting, fighting history. While they will likely be defeated in their efforts to make the U.S. a “white-only” country, the rest of us will pay a heavy price.

(David Rosen is the author of Sex, Sin & Subversion: The Transformation of 1950s New York’s Forbidden into America’s New Normal (Skyhorse, 2015). He can be reached at; check out Courtesy,

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Big River Logging Camp

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by Piers Morgan

Last June, alleged Buffalo supermarket mass shooter Payton Gendron, then 17, threatened to shoot up his school.

Students at Susquehanna Valley High School in Conklin, NY, had been asked about their plans after graduation and Gendron said he wanted to commit a murder-suicide.

“A school official reported that this very troubled young man had made statements indicating that he wanted to do a shooting, either at a graduation ceremony, or sometime after,” a government official revealed to the Buffalo News.

Gendron’s threat was so disturbing that the school reported it to local Broome County police, who, after interviewing him, brought him in for a mental health evaluation.

He spent two days in a hospital and was released.

At the time, the Washington Post has reported, Gendron owned a Savage Axis XP rifle that he received from his father as a Christmas present in December 2019, when he was 16.

In December 2021, he purchased a Mossberg 500 shotgun.

In January this year, he bought a used Bushmaster XM-15 semi-automatic rifle.

And on Saturday, according to authorities, he took all three guns to a Tops Friendly Markets store in Buffalo and used the Bushmaster to shoot 13 people, leaving 10 of them dead.

Gendron, now 18, was an internet-radicalized white supremacist who hated black people and wanted to kill as many of them as possible. (Eleven of the 13 victims were black.)

In a repellent “manifesto” that he pre-emptively wrote to explain his murderous rampage, Gendron said he illegally modified the Bushmaster with his father’s power drill so he could use 30-round magazines and wouldn’t have to reload so frequently.

Gendron mocked the New York state gun laws as “cuck” and those who follow them as “cucked.”

The laws allow customers over 18 to buy guns, though they need to pass a criminal background check at the time of the sale, which Gendron did.

These background checks are supposed to red-flag individuals with a history of mental illness, but that only shows up if they were institutionalized by a judge, which he wasn’t.

Yet there were other clues to his mental instability.

Two of Gendron’s former classmates told the New York Times that he showed up in class wearing hazmat gear after pandemic restrictions were lifted in 2020.

“He wore the entire suit, boots, gloves, everything,” said Nathan Twitchell, 19. “Everyone was just staring at him.”

Gendron didn’t return to school much after that, preferring online coursework, and becoming more reclusive.

His “manifesto” details how the isolated teen disappeared down a sick, twisted online rabbit hole of insane conspiracy theories and vile racism.

Inevitably, a partisan point-scoring blame game has erupted over who inspired him to do what he did, but as journalist Glenn Greenwald brilliantly illustrates in a lengthy new Substack article, “all ideologies spawn psychopaths who kill innocents in its name.”

The truth is that this psycho seems to have hated everyone, on all sides of the political divide.

And the real question in the wake of this latest sickening horror is what to do to stop more attacks like it?

I’m not going to shout about gun control again.

I’ve tried that after all the worst US mass shootings over the past decade, and it has invariably failed to make one iota of difference to the debate.

As Jay Leno once told me: “Americans don’t like being told they have to give up their guns, Piers, especially by someone with your accent.”

I get that.

Guns are part of US culture.

If an American came to Britain and furiously demanded we give up cricket because it’s too dangerous (numerous people, including an international star several years ago, have been killed playing it), we’d run them out of town, just as unhinged radio shock jock Alex Jones tried, unsuccessfully, to have me deported after I vented my wrath about guns on CNN after Sandy Hook.

I know that many Americans believe passionately in their constitutional right to bear arms, a right endorsed by the Supreme Court in 2008.

I also know that those same Americans have an extreme aversion to the words “gun control.”

So why don’t we try a different phrase: “gun safety.”

How do you make a country awash with over 300 million guns safer from gun violence?

After all, New York state has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country, and New York City’s laws are even tougher.

But it didn’t stop Gendron because he thought the laws were “cuck.”

All criminals think that.

That’s why they’re criminals.

So, while I may find it crazy that Gendron can’t legally buy an alcoholic drink for another three years, until he turns 21, or a Kinder Surprise chocolate egg because they’re banned in the US due to the risk of choking on the little toys contained inside, but he was able to legally buy a semi-automatic rifle at just 18, it’s clear that new laws alone won’t stop gun violence, though I believe they would help curb it.

What should not be up for debate is that the best way to stop bigoted lunatics like Gendron from committing heinous crimes is to act when they wave obvious red flags.

He was self-evidently a lethal cocktail waiting to explode, but the system failed to stop him because, we’re absurdly told, he wasn’t on anyone’s “radar.”

Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said Gendron had no further contact with law enforcement after his release from the hospital.

“Nobody called in,” he said. “Nobody called any complaints.”

To which my response is, Why the hell weren’t YOU calling into HIM, Commissioner?

He most definitely was on your radar, as a potential mass shooter, but you just let him drop off.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, a Buffalo native, told ABC News after launching an investigation into the shooting: “I want to know what people knew, and when they knew it.”

That probe will rightly include social media platforms like Twitch, on which Gendron livestreamed his massacre (it was taken down after 2 minutes). How much did it help fuel his sick mindset?

But right now, there are urgent questions I would like Broome County police to answer:

Did you check Gendron’s computer and phone after he threatened to shoot up his school? We know he spent many months, possibly years, studying previous mass shootings and race hate crimes.

Did you speak to his schoolmates and ask them about his worrying behavior and state of mind that was causing them concern?

Did you know his father had given him a gun for his 16th birthday?

Why didn’t you put any note on his background check files detailing his threat to shoot up his school and subsequent two-day mental health evaluation? The man who sold him the Bushmaster, Robert Donald of Vintage Firearms in Endicott, NY, says nothing showed up to give him any doubts about whether to sell. “He didn’t stand out,” Donald told police. “Because if he did, I would’ve never sold him the gun.”

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"Sunday Gardening" by John Philip Falter (cover For The Saturday Evening Post, July 1, 1961 issue)

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The Real Value of Bitcoin Is Not Its Price

On 5/16/2022 12:55 PM, RiNC wrote (Coast Chatline):

At its core, bitcoin is not actually about the ups and downs of the digital currency market; it’s not even about a new unit of exchange to replace the dollar. It’s about freeing people from the tyranny of centralized trust. It speaks to the prospect that we can take power away from the center. Away from banks, governments, lawyers - and transfer it to the people.

* * *

Marco here. Whatever yez find yourselves about to throw at bitcoin, instead write a check for that amount and mail it to Marco McClean, box 1497, Mendocino, CA 95460. Don't forget to sign it.

I will free you from the tyranny of trust. You have my solemn word as a Hoynman.

Marco McClean

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Dear Editor,

This weekend in TOPS Supermarket, Buffalo, NY, a young man, just 18, wearing a bullet-proof vest shot and killed 10 completely innocent people. The cowardly hate-crime-crazed murderer also injured at least three others. Four of the dead were store employees. 

These were folks who were stalwarts: goodhearted Americans who were invaluable community members. A bit about four of them:

1. 30 year veteran Buffalo Police Department officer, Aaron Salter, Jr., 55. Officer Salter did his duty as the store’s armed guard by taking a shot at the shooter which unfortunately struck his vest.

2. Pearl Young,77. MS Young loved singing, dancing and helping others. She ran a food pantry for 25 years and was a mother and grandmother.

3. Katherine Massey, 72. She was dropped off at the supermarket by her sister to do a little shopping. Her smile lit up the world; she taught Sunday School, sang and greeted everyone at her church with a smile or hug.

4. Celestine Chaney, 65. MS Chaney was shopping for strawberries to make strawberry shortcake.

Neither Congress nor the president seem inclined to lift a finger to stop the mass gun killing.

Frank H. Baumgardner, III 

Santa Rosa

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Stagecoach, Ten Mile River Road, 1911

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Israel, which shoots hundreds of Palestinians a year, routinely includes reporters and photographers on its target lists.

by Chris Hedges

Shireen Abu Akleh, the Al Jazeera reporter with more than two decades of experience covering armed conflicts, knew the protocol. She and other reporters remained last Wednesday in the open, clearly visible to Israeli snipers about 650 feet away in a building. Her flak jacket and helmet were emblazoned with the word “PRESS.”

There were three shots fired in her direction. The second bullet hit the Al Jazeera producer Ali al-Samoudi in the back. The third shot, al-Samoudi remembered, hit Abu Akleh in the face below the rim of her helmet.

There were a few seconds when the Israeli sniper saw profiled in his scope Abu Akleh, one of the most recognizable faces in the Middle East. The 5.56 mmbullet from the M-16, designed to spin end over end upon impact, would have obliterated most of Abu Akleh’s head. The accuracy of the M-16, especially the M16A4s equipped with the Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight (ACOG), a prismatic telescopic sight, is very high. In the fighting in Fallujah so many dead insurgents were found with head wounds that observers at first thought they had been executed. The bullet that killed Abu Akleh was deftly placed between the very slim opening separating her helmet and the collar of her flak jacket.

I have been in combat, including in clashes between Israeli and Palestinian forces. Snipers are dreaded on a battlefield because each kill is calculated. The execution of Abu Akleh was not an accident. She was singled out for elimination. Whether this killing was ordered by commanding officers, or whether it was the whim of an Israeli sniper, I cannot answer. Israelis shoot so many Palestinians with impunity my guess is the sniper knew he or she could kill Abu Akleh and never face any consequences. 

The shooting, Al Jazeera said in a statement, was “a blatant murder, violating international laws and norms.” Abu Akleh, the network added, was “assassinated in cold blood.”

Abu Akleh, who was 51 and a Palestinian-American, was a familiar and trusted presence on television screens throughout the region, revered for her courage and integrity and beloved for her careful and sensitive reporting on the intricacies of daily life under the occupation. Her reporting from the occupied territories routinely punctured Israeli narratives and exposed Israeli abuses and crimes, making her the bête noire of the Israeli government. She was a heroine for young Palestinian women, as Dalia Hatuqa, a Palestinian-American journalist and friend of Abu Akleh’s, related to The New York Times.

“I know of a lot of girls who grew up basically standing in front of a mirror and holding their hair brushes and pretending to be Shireen,” Hatuqa told the paper. “That’s how lasting and important her presence was.”

“I chose journalism to be close to the people,” Abu Akleh said in a clip shared by Al Jazeera after she was killed. “It might not be easy to change the reality, but at least I was able to bring their voice to the world.” 

In a 2017 interview with the Palestinian television channel An-Najah NBC, she was asked if she was worried about being shot.

“Of course, I get scared,” she said. “In a specific moment you forget that fear. We don’t throw ourselves to death. We go and we try to find where we can stand and how to protect the team with me before I think about how I am going to go up on the screen and what I am going to say.”

Her funeral attracted thousands of mourners, the largest in Jerusalem since the death in 2002 of the Palestinian leader Faisal Husseini. Israeli police in full riot gear disrupted the procession, confiscating and ripping down Palestinian flags. The police fired stun grenades and pushed, clubbed and beat mourners and pallbearers, causing them to lose their grip on the coffin. Thousands chanted: “We sacrifice our soul and blood for you, Shireen.” It was another example of the daily humiliation meted out to Palestinians by their Israeli occupiers. It was also a moving tribute to a reporter who understood that the role of journalism is to give a voice to those the powerful seek to silence.

I covered the Israeli occupation for seven years, two years with The Dallas Morning News and five with The New York Times, where I was the paper’s Middle East Bureau Chief. One of the chief objectives of the Israeli army was to prevent our reporting from the occupied territories. If we were able get past Israeli checkpoints, not always possible, to document murderous assaults by Israeli soldiers on unarmed Palestinians then Israel’s well-oiled propaganda machine was rolled out to obscure our reporting. Israeli officials swiftly issued counter narratives. The Israeli Prime Minister, Foreign Minister, Defense Minister and Israeli Defense Force (IDF) spokesperson, for example, immediately blamed the killing of Abu Akleh on Palestinian gunmen until video footage examined by B’Tselem Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories exposed the falsehood. 

When Israel is caught lying, as it was with the murder of Abu Akleh, it immediately promises an investigation. The narrative shifts from one of blaming the Palestinians to the outcome of an inquiry. Impartial investigations into the hundreds of killings by soldiers and Jewish settlers of Palestinians are rarely carried out. Perpetrators are almost never brought to trial or held accountable. The pattern of Israeli obfuscation is pathetically predictable. So is the collusion of much of the corporate media along with Republican and Democratic politicians. US politicians decried the murder of Abu Akleh and dutifully repeated the old mantra, calling for a “thorough investigation” by the army that carried out the crime.

The dramatic footage captured in September 2000 at the Netzarim junction in the Gaza Strip by France 2 TV of a father trying to shield his 12-year-old son Muhammad al-Durrah from the Israeli gunfire that killed him resulted in a typical propaganda campaign by Israel. Israeli officials spent years lying about the killing of the boy, first blaming the Palestinians for the shooting, and later suggesting that the scene was faked, and Muhammad was still alive.

One thing is certain, the Israeli military knows which one of its snipers killed Abu Akleh, although the name of the soldier will probably never be made public. Nor will, I expect, the sniper be reprimanded.

“With all due respect to us, let’s say that Israel’s credibility is not very high in such cases,” Israel’s Minister of Diaspora Affairs Nachman Shai said of an Israeli investigation into the killing. “We know this. It is based on the past.”

Israel has a long history of blocking investigations into the plethora of war crimes it commits in Gaza, the world’s largest open-air prison, and the West Bank. It refuses to cooperate with the International Criminal Court (ICC) into possible war crimes in the occupied territories. It does not cooperate with the U.N. Human Rights Council and prohibits the United Nations Special Rapporteur (UNSR) for Human Rights from entering the country. Israel revoked the work permit for Omar Shakir, the Director of Human Rights Watch (Israel and Palestine), in 2018 and expelled him. In May 2018, Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs and Public Diplomacy published a report calling on the European Union (EU) and European states to halt their direct and indirect financial support and funding to Palestinian and international human rights organizations that “have ties to terror and promote boycotts against Israel.”

Israel relies on campaigns of terror, with random and indiscriminate killings, to beat back Palestinian resistance. Israeli strategists describe the tactic as “mowing the grass,” part of an endless war of attrition. Israeli terror keeps Palestinians perpetually off-balance, fearful, and living at a subsistence level. This state terrorism also contributes to Israel’s main goal, a slow-motion ethnic cleansing of Palestinian land.

The 2014 bombing and shelling of Gaza, which lasted 51 days, killed more than 2,250 Palestinians, including 551 children. Israel’s use of its military against an occupied population that does not have mechanized units, an air force, navy, missiles, heavy artillery, and command and control, not to mention a US commitment to provide $38 billion dollars in defense-aid to Israel over the next decade, is not justifiable under international law. Israel is not exercising the right to defend itself. It is carrying out mass murder. It is a war crime. The attacks are designed to degrade civilian infrastructure, destroying power plants, water and sewage treatment facilities, residential high-rises, government buildings, roads, bridges, public facilities, agricultural lands, schools and mosques.

Israel used state terror to crush the International Solidarity Movement that saw activists come to the occupied territories from around the world, often using their bodies to block Israel from demolishing Palestinian homes, as well as filming and recording human rights abuses.

As the author and journalist Jonathan Cook writes:

But Abu Akleh’s US passport was no more able to save her from Israeli retribution than that of Rachel Corrie, murdered in 2003 by an Israeli bulldozer driver as she tried to protect Palestinian homes in Gaza. Similarly, Tom Hurndall’s British passport did not stop him from being shot in the head as he tried to protect Palestinian children in Gaza from Israeli gunfire. Nor did filmmaker James Miller’s British passport prevent an Israeli soldier from executing him in 2003 in Gaza, as he documented Israel’s assault on the tiny, overcrowded enclave.

All were seen as having taken a side by acting as witnesses and by refusing to remain quiet as Palestinians suffered – and for that reason, they and those who thought like them had to be taught a lesson.

It worked. Soon, the contingent of foreign volunteers – those who had come to Palestine to record Israel’s atrocities and serve, when necessary, as human shields to protect Palestinians from a trigger-happy Israeli army – were gone. Israel denounced the International Solidarity Movement for supporting terrorism, and given the clear threat to their lives, the pool of volunteers gradually dried up. 

Israel has a deep hostility to the press, especially Al Jazeera which has large viewership throughout the Arab world. Al Jazeera reporters are routinely denied press credentials, harassed, and blocked from reporting. Israeli warplanes in May 2021 destroyed the al-Jalaa building in Gaza that housed dozens of international news agencies, including the Gaza offices of Al Jazeera and the Associated Press.

At least 144 Palestinian journalists have been wounded by Israeli forces in the occupied territories since 2018 and three, including Abu Akleh, have been killed in the same period, according to Reporters Without Borders. Palestinian reporters Ahmed Abu Hussein and Yasser Mortaja, also clearly identified as press, were shot dead by Israeli snipers in Gaza in 2018. At least 45 Palestinian journalists have been killed by Israeli soldiers since 2000, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Information.

“Abu Akleh was most likely shot precisely because she was a high-profile Al Jazeera reporter, known for her fearless reporting of Israeli crimes,” Cook writes. “Both the army and its soldiers bear grudges, and they have lethal weapons with which to settle scores.”

Israel does little to hide its callous disregard for the lives of Palestinians, international activists, and journalists.

“Suppose that Shireen Abu Akleh was killed by Israeli army fire,” Avi Benyahu, a former IDF spokesperson stated. “There’s no need to apologize for that.”  

Reporters and photographers, in Israel’s eyes, are responsible for their own deaths.

 “When ‘terrorists’ fire at our soldiers in Jenin, the soldiers must retaliate in full force even in the presence of journalists in from Al Jazeera in the area—who usually stand in the army’s way and impede their work,” said Knesset member Itamar Ben Gvir.

Israeli forces have killed at least 380 Palestinians, including 90 children, during the past year, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA). This includes at least 260 Palestinians killed in Gaza during Israel’s latest assault in May 2021. The pace of Israeli killings of Palestinians has been steadily increasing in the wake of armed Palestinians murdering 18 people in cities across Israel since the end of March. In March, Israeli forces killed 12 Palestinians, including three children. In April, Israeli forces killed at least 22 Palestinians, including three children. Abu Akleh was covering an Israeli raid on the Jenin refugee camp where army units said they were hunting for Palestinian attackers.

The killing of Abu Akleh would have been treated very differently if she was killed by Russian soldiers in Ukraine. There would have been no equivocations about who carried out the murder. Her death would have been denounced as a war crime. No one would have acquiesced to let the Russian military carry out the investigation. 

The world is divided into worthy and unworthy victims, those who deserve our compassion and support and those who do not. Ukrainians are white and largely Christian. We see the struggle against the Russian occupier as a battle for freedom and democracy. We provide $40 billion in weapons and humanitarian aid. We impose punishing sanctions on Moscow. We make the Ukrainian cause our own.

The 55-year-long fight for Palestinian freedom is no less just, no less worthy of our support. But Palestinians are occupied by our Israeli ally. They are not white. Most are not Christian, although Abu Akleh was Christian. They are not deemed worthy. They suffer and die alone. The war crimes carried out by Israel go unheeded and unpunished. The Palestinians doggedly refuse to give up. This makes them as heroic, maybe more heroic, than Ukrainian fighters. We are on the wrong side of history in Israel. Abu Akleh’s blood is on our hands. 


* * *

The Boonville Lodge on a Saturday Night


  1. Val Muchowski May 17, 2022

    Malia Cohen for California Controller

    Malia M. Cohen serves as a Member of the California State Board of Equalization (BOE), California’s elected tax commission. She was elected to the BOE in November 2018, served as Chair in 2019, and is the first African-American woman to serve on the Board.

    As the BOE Board Member for District 2, she represents 10 million constituents living in all or parts of 23 counties extending from Del Norte County in the north to Santa Barbara County in the south. In January 2019, her BOE Board Member colleagues unanimously selected her to serve as Chair of the Board.

    A strong advocate for social justice and inclusion, Board Member Cohen pledges to ensure that the views of all who come before the Board of Equalization are considered carefully, with respect, civility, and courtesy. She further commits to collaborate with her colleagues to guarantee that all the actions of the BOE are open, transparent, and above reproach.

    Prior to being elected to the Board of Equalization, Board Member Cohen served as President of the Board of Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco. She was first elected to the Board of Supervisors in 2010 and re-elected in 2014.

    Previously, she served as a Commissioner of the San Francisco Employee Retirement System (SFERS), which manages a $23 billion pension fund. As President of SFERS, she led efforts to divest from fossil fuels and thermal coal investments and moved $100 million into a fossil fuel-free index fund.

    Throughout her life, Board Member Cohen has fought for diversity and inclusion. She has championed policies and programs that protect public health, foster economic development, promote new affordable housing, and that create good jobs through protecting and expanding our manufacturing base.

    She announced her candidacy for State Controller during the California Democratic Party (CDP) 2021 convention.

    “I am running because I am committed to equity, empowerment, hope and opportunity for all Californians,” Cohen said.

  2. Eric Sunswheat May 17, 2022

    RE: I TRY to keep up with the latest in American fascism but I confess I’ve got a lot of catching up to do…
    (ED NOTES)

    ->. Download file | Play in new window | Recorded on
    May 16, 2022
    Mickey is joined for the hour by former co-host Peter Phillips and University of California, Santa Barbara sociologist William I. Robinson.

    They discuss Robinson’s new book “Global Civil War: Capitalism Post Pandemic” out from PM Press. Robinson says that the many types of digital technologies created, enhanced or expanded in recent years have changed the nature of world capitalism, and that —

    with the advent of the coronavirus pandemic —

    the capitalist class has hastened to deploy these new tools to control populations, with the aim of suppressing the peoples’ uprisings that have been growing in extent and scale for more than a decade.

    Phillips and Robinson offer ideas about what sort of popular movement will be needed to confront this new variant of predatory capitalism.

  3. Bill Pilgrim May 17, 2022

    That’s odd. I always thought ‘legacy Americans’ had red skin.

    That’s odd. The western MSM are all reporting that the last holdouts at the Azovstal steel plant have been “evacuated.”
    In the real world… they surrendered…to the Russians.

    • George Hollister May 17, 2022

      Which means they will either be used, or executed (disappear).

  4. chuck dunbar May 17, 2022


    Great response, Mr. Bruce, to Carlson’s constant fear-mongering:

    “But I laughed at Carlson’s reference to “legacy Americans,” i.e., white Americans, as somehow imperiled by darker immigrants while young people of all races by the millions presently marry outside their race, which has happened on a fairly large scale right here in the Anderson Valley as legacy Americans marry second generation Mexican immigrants. On the off-chance the human race survives long-term there won’t be legacy Americans, only Americans, and better-looking A(m)ericans, too.”

    • Lazarus May 17, 2022

      Immigration should always be a process, in my opinion.
      But I do know this. To a person, people I have discussed immigration with, the individuals who have immigrated through the previous legal process are resentful of how the progressive form of immigration got implemented.
      They say relatively the same thing. “We had to wait, go through the vetting and the process. Why don’t these immigrants have to do the same?”

  5. George Hollister May 17, 2022

    In the ho hum department from the WSJ:

    “The shooting in Buffalo on Saturday has horrified Americans, but it was massacre as usual in Chicago this weekend and few outside the Windy City noticed.

    At least 33 people were shot, five fatally, according to police. Five of the victims were in the 1st police district, which covers the downtown Loop and Near South Side. The city’s daily mayhem isn’t limited to high-crime neighborhoods but has spread to busy commercial areas. Shootings in the 1st district are up 60% over last year.”

  6. Jim Armstrong May 17, 2022

    Heaping all that info and opinion on the Buffalo incident in today’s MCD did not at the same time cause much illumination.
    Oh, well.

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