High Pressure | Anita Launch | Apple Update | Dorr Bothwell | Elk Day | Book Talk | Measure P | Librarian Melissa | Seeking Housing | AVUSD Candidates | Film Screening | Fair Moon | Ed Notes | Four Quilters | Vineyard Controversy | Escola Boys | Hopland Cemetery | Treasure Hunters | FERC Lawsuit | Silveria Couple | Bell Bust | 'Twas I | Magic Ranchers | Huff's Wall | Yesterday's Catch | Winter Flight | Nuclear Bailout | Season 2 | Ukraine | Walk Gently | Status Quo | Missing Pronouns | Comments | Hialeah Indians | Newspaper Killers | Rich Economy | Baseball Inequality | Pitfall
HIGH PRESSURE will ensure mainly dry weather through next week. Inland temperatures will heat up through Saturday, followed by cooling with a deepening marine layer Sunday through early next week. (NWS)
YESTERDAY'S HIGHS: Ukiah 106°, Boonville 105°, Covelo 102°, Yorkville 102°, Fort Bragg 63°
APPLE USERS were today urged to update their devices after the firm disclosed serious security vulnerabilities for iPhones, iPads and Macs that could potentially allow attackers to take complete control of these devices. Apple said it is 'aware of a report that this issue may have been actively exploited' and released two security reports about the issue on Wednesday, but they have only now received more widespread attention. Security experts told users to update affected devices - the iPhone 6S and later models; and several models of the iPad , including the 5th generation and later, all iPad Pros, the iPad Mini 4 and later and the iPad Air 2 and later. The update, iOS 15.6.1, also applies to the iPod Touch 7th generation. In addition, Mac computers on MacOS Monterey are affected - with users urged to download '12.5.1'. The issues were found by an anonymous researcher in 'WebKit', the browser engine that powers Safari; and 'Kernel', which is the core of the operating system. There have so far been no confirmed reports of specific cases where the security flaw had been used against people or devices, and Apple has made no official statement on the issue further to an update on its website. In this update on its support page, Apple said one of the flaws means a malicious application 'may be able to execute arbitrary code with Kernel privileges' - which has been described as meaning full access to the device. (Daily Mail)
GREAT DAY IN ELK
The 46th fun-filled “Great Day in Elk” will be held on Saturday, August 27 from noon until dusk.
The parade starts at noon on Highway 1, with floats, tykes on bikes, Smokey the Bear and lots more. The carnival follows, with game booths and prizes and do-it-yourself craft projects for children. There's a $100 grease pole, a watermelon-eating contest, sack races, crafts fair, silent auction and a raffle.
This year’s entertainment features live music with Mama Grows Funk, the Real Sarahs, Jeremiah Apellido, DJ Nutrishious, plus belly dancing by “The Trillium Tribe” and the fabulous cake auction.
Daytime food includes tamales, Caesar salad with and without chicken, fresh baked focaccia bread, Moroccan lentil soup, old-fashioned hot dogs and lots of homemade goodies. There will be fresh-pressed Greenwood Ridge apple cider and Elk's famous margaritas, along with soft drinks, beer and wine.
Dinner will be served from 4 to 7 p.m. by the chefs of Izakaya Gama of Pt. Arena. Choice of Teriyaki Chicken or Curried Tofu Salad Sandwiches with cole slaw, Japanese potato salad and Yuzu sesame salad.
So, come to the “Great Day” in the coastal village of Elk, located 5 miles south of Highway 128 on Highway 1, and enjoy a fun-filled family day while supporting the Greenwood Community Center. For more information call 877-3291 or go to www.elkweb.org. No dogs, please.
WHO OPPOSES THE PROPOSED FIRE SALES TAX?
The email below is from the Mendocino County Association of Fire Districts (MCAFD) group and is for informational purposes to keep the AVCSD Board updated as things progress. I have also attached Measure P's opposition argument and the draft version of the counter argument (to the opposition) which will both be printed on the ballot measure in November. As I stated at Wednesday's CSD Board meeting, I was very disappointed to hear that the opposition for this is primarily due to the ever ongoing ambulance issue in the Ukiah area. A negative vote for fire services will impact our rural agencies for years and yet I am told that the signatories of the opposition campaign are led primarily by inland private ambulance supporters. An interesting note against the opposition's argument about “Ukiah being the primary beneficiary for this tax” is that while developing the distribution allocations in recent MCAFD meetings, the cities in the room acknowledged the immediate need for additional rural fire department funding and generously agreed to adjusting the distribution formula to increase rural agency allocations even though their portion was reduced from the initial proposal by the BOS.
The email thread below (with the attachment) describes the recognized need for Mendocino County Fire Services with a dollar amount from 2016. The Prop.172 letter from the BOS (in 2016) acknowledged fire agencies as Public Safety and endorsed the need to support fire agencies moving forward at that time. This was well before the many back to back years of heavy fires in Mendocino County, COVID 19, and the increasing call volume that all departments currently face. Although Measure AJ [Advisory measure for cannabis taxes to go to certain categories including increased emergency services] to date has been a bust for fire funding, the micro steps of obtaining additional funds through Prop. 172 and TOT have been obtained and not revoked by the BOS since this pledge letter was signed by BOS Chair Gjerde in 2016.
Andres Avila, Chief
Anderson Valley Fire Department
Rebuttal to Argument Against Measure P
The argument against is full of misleading and inaccurate statements. Two of the signatories have been connected with Medstar Ambulance of Mendocino County, a fee for service ambulance service. Are they worried that additional funding for public services will affect Medstar’s bottom line?
The truth is that this is NOT a new tax. Measure P will dedicate a set portion of the sales tax already collected to ALL of the county’s 20 fire departments and the County’s Fire Safe Council for the next 10 years — benefiting all of the residents those organizations serve. Small volunteer fire departments that have struggled for years to raise needed funds through BBQs and bake sales will finally have a decent funding stream for critical equipment and vital training.
Residents know their fire departments and districts, and it is the chiefs of these departments and district boards that will be accountable for the allocation and spending of Measure P money. They know what their departments need to respond to medical emergencies, fires, hazards and rescues. They know what they need to keep their residents safe, and Measure P money will help them do that.
The Fire Safe Council supports a network of more than 50 neighborhood fire safe councils and has done so using inadequate grant funding. Measure P will give the Council reliable funding for the first time, which will benefit local residents trying to make their communities fire safe in the face of ever more serious fire seasons.
Measure P is in the interest of every resident of Mendocino County who depends on local fire fighters and fire prevention programs to keep them safe.
Vote YES on Measure P.
Seeking Housing in Fort Bragg
My partner Aneta and I are still on the lookout for housing so that we may have a foundation to begin working on our local vegetable farming endeavors and other supplementary work opportunities. We are primarily concerned with finding housing inside or within close proximity to Fort Bragg. We both prefer cycling as a form of transportation and find riding along Highway 1 to be stressful and dangerous.
We currently have vegetable growing space in Fort Bragg but are actively seeking any temporary or long-term housing that could include mother-in-law, roommates, work/trade, boat life, etc. We are O.K. with small living quarters as long as we have ample time and space to use a kitchen. Neither of us smoke, drink, or have pets. We do aspire to have friends over for shared meals and board game nights on occasion.
Our combined interests are many and cover things such as veganic and natural farming methods, zero waste living, cycling, cooking all meals of the day from seasonal ingredients, natural building and building science, movement meditation in the form of yoga and acro, community resilience through non-hierarchical and respect-based communication, and virtually any skill to do with crafting and building one's own daily devices (woodworking, welding, pottery, sewing, etc.)
Thank you for anyone who has already reached out directly or with leads. We can be reached via email or at (650) 218-1663 and (929) 348-0091.
Nik & Aneta
Nikolas Robalino <firstname.lastname@example.org>
SATURDAY NIGHT SCREENING AT LARRY SPRING MUSEUM
Super 8 screening this Sat night at 8 PM in Spring Commons. Come and enjoy a selection of Echo Park's The Sound We See, a project that we are working to bring to Fort Bragg. BONUS screening of the film made in our one-day workshop. Enter through the gates beside 225 E Redwood Ave., Fort Bragg.
Anne Maureen McKeating, Executive Director, 707 962 3131
NOBODY FROM MENDO? Sonoma County will have two representatives in the California High School Football Hall of Fame, a new endeavor by the Rose Bowl Legacy Foundation that unveiled its inaugural class on Monday. Jerry Robinson, who starred at Cardinal Newman in the 1970s and played 13 years in the NFL, and Ernie Nevers, who played at Santa Rosa High School and Santa Rosa Junior College and was one of the first stars of the NFL in the 1920s, were among 100 players chosen for induction. A ceremony is set for spring 2023 at the Rose Bowl, where the California High School Football Hall of Fame will be located.
I'D SAY Mendo's Dan Doubiago, the Tevaseu brothers from Boonville and Theron Miller from Mendocino, all of whom played Division One football and two of whom, Doubiago and Martin Tevaseu played in the NFL.
WHICH doesn't include players from the larger school districts of Mendocino County. (I wonder if they'll include OJ?)
MOST OF US know by now that the rightwing describes even the tamest liberal as, variously, "leftist" or "left-leaning" or "communist" or, among their heavy hitters, "Marxist." Of course they've conflated socialism and communism for years as, say, social security becomes a “socialist” program devised by “communists” in the Roosevelt Administration, of which there were zero. Just today, I read a really dumb article by a black scholar named Deroy Murdock that began, “The sinister plan to fire teachers for being white is naked bigotry and Marxist.” The scheme by guilt-ridden libs in Minnesota to atone for the sins of the past in this crazy, color-coded manner is not a good idea and, as Professor Murdock writes, bigoted, clothed or unclothed.
BUT IT ISN'T MARXIST. Marx's sociology was pegged to social class, not race, as in the working class creates the wealth stolen from them by the owning classes and, over the long haul, the owning classes wind up owning just about everything unless the working class takes it away from them, by force if it comes to it. Naturally, it's in the interest of the owning classes, who count media ownership among their possessions, to describe any program or movement that might cost them money as “socialist” or “Marxist.” Their propaganda works to convince millions of Americans (Trump followers), many of them of the working class, to vote against their own best interests, against themselves and the welfare of their families. (cf James Marmon of Clearlake)
THE PROB in this country is that both parties are funded by the wealthy. If you apply a Marxist class analysis to the Democrats, you'll find that the most enthusiastic of them, the Westside of Ukiah for instance, are drawn from the financially secure sectors of the middle and upper middle classes. Everyone else lives east of State Street and here and there in pockets of nearly Third World squalor with only dope and booze as succor. The Democrats pretend not to be class-based by pretending to look out for the interests of working people and the poor, while the Republicans make it clear they're organized to protect wealth and to keep back the poor. In the view of the Boonville weekly, both parties are utterly, irremediably corrupt with the two least capable people in our country — Trump and Biden —leading us to a probably violent dissolution.
ANOTHER DELUDED writer, this one on the left, begins, “Trump is in hot water, and why he may be prosecuted.” That one reminds me of Time Magazine's seemingly annual covers declaring, “Castro's Finished.” Those wishful thinking covers went on for years, and Castro died of old age, peacefully in his bed.
WHY ONE ORDINARY VINEYARD MAY THREATEN THE FUTURE OF NAPA’S WINE INDUSTRY
by Jess Lander
The Green Island Vineyard is in the center of a fierce debate in Napa County.
By Napa Valley standards, Green Island Vineyard is an ordinary, under-the-radar plot for grape-growing. But the land in south Napa County is suddenly at the center of a heated political debate, with some worried that its fate could jeopardize the future of Napa’s wine industry.
The vineyard’s owners say it is “blighted,” no longer viable for grape growing. They want to rip out their vines and redevelop the land for industrial use, such as wine warehouses used for fulfillment or storage. Rezoning the land to allow that is a logical solution, they say, because the vineyard is already located next to an industrial park.
But Napa Valley preservationists, including wine and agriculture groups like the Napa County Farm Bureau and Napa Valley Vintners, are worried that could set a dangerous precedent of converting protected land and kick-start urban sprawl.
In November, residents of American Canyon, located at the south end of Napa County, will vote on the first significant step toward redevelopment. Regardless of the outcome, some say, Green Island Vineyard represents a much larger tug-of-war developing in Napa County: the community versus the wine industry.
For decades, land use has been controversial in Napa, where the preservation of agriculture — and thus the wine industry — has been a high priority. This commitment to preservation goes back to 1968, when the Napa Valley Agricultural Preserve was established. The first designation of its kind in the U.S., it protects more than 30,000 acres of the region’s valuable farmland from urban development.
The 157-acre Green Island Vineyard (1661 Green Island Road) is located in an unincorporated pocket of Napa County and zoned for agriculture, watershed and open space use. In order to switch it to industrial zoning, the property would need to be annexed by the city of American Canyon.
Napa County land use debates like this one have intensified in recent years. The region’s fast growth has left little room for expansion and the planting of new vineyards, yet there’s also limited space for other critical community needs, above all housing. As the demand for affordable housing in Napa County increases, the fate of some of the region’s protected acreage is becoming uncertain.
Vineyard and winery development projects, like Walt Ranch and Frank Family’s Benjamin Ranch, have endured years of repeated appeals and pushback from community members and activists citing environmental concerns in the face of climate change, impeding the wine industry’s growth. But those properties are set in premium wine-growing regions — Atlas Peak and Rutherford, respectively — where land is extremely valuable. Green Island Vineyards, on the other hand, is in an area of Napa Valley not known for high-end wine production.
Set just west of the American Canyon border and south of the Napa County Airport, the area is the gateway to Napa Valley; tourists generally speed through on their way to the region’s wineries, hotels and restaurants. The vineyard is next to a large industrial park that includes Amazon and Ikea.
So why so much concern over it being replaced by more warehouses?
“It’s the slippery slope argument,” said Brendon Freeman, executive officer of Napa County’s Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO). If the proposal moves forward, the commission would have the final say on whether the property can be annexed. “If you let this one go, who's to say you don't start a domino effect and a bunch of other ag land ends up getting lost?”
Eve Kahn, the co-president of environmental coalition Napa Vision 2050 and an alternative member of LAFCO, said the annexation proposal might not have gotten as much attention a few years ago, but intensified concerns over fires, drought and water have made it a bigger issue.
“In the scheme of things and its location, you go, ‘ho-hum,’” said Kahn. “But we’re already concerned we’re going to lose some of our vineyards, so I think there’s a heightened awareness of the environmental issues. There’s more of a community interest in saying, ‘We're Wine Country and we have to do whatever we can to preserve this.’”
Green Island also adjoins the wetlands of the Napa River and a popular cycling and walking path.
The owners of the vineyard, which was purchased in 1996, claim that the land is no longer viable for agriculture due to high salinity in its soil, which they say has caused the vines to die. Over the past several years, they have torn out two-thirds of their vines; only 39 acres, which they say also are tainted, remain.
Those against the rezoning plan are pushing for soil remediation or the planting of alternative crops, like oats, hay and rye, which can grow in salty conditions, but are not as lucrative as wine grapes.
“If the property gets annexed, it’s saying that it’s acceptable to annex ag land if an owner’s expected crop return doesn’t materialize,” said Ryan Klobas, CEO of the Napa County Farm Bureau.
Green Island’s owners — Ed Farver, former general manager at Jackson Family Wines; Will Nord, who started Napa Valley College’s viticulture program and owns a vineyard management company; and attorney David Gilbreth, who has represented many wineries — counter that remediation or replanting is not possible.
“There is no viable water source to support agricultural activities and agriculture,” Gilbreth told The Chronicle. He also pointed to an analysis presented at a June LAFCO hearing, where soil scientist Paul Anamosa said that the vineyard is in a “death spiral” and economics expert Wenbiao Cai estimated that growing oats on the property would result in an annual loss of nearly $57,000.
According to LAFCO’s Freeman, the process of annexation is complicated and could take years. But the first major hurdle, approval of Ballot Measure J, is up for vote at the general election in November.
In order for the vineyard to be eligible for annexation, American Canyon residents must pass an amendment to extend the city’s urban limit line — a boundary that marks the end of urban development in an area — to include Green Island Vineyard. Currently, the vineyard is bordered on three sides by this line. The ballot measure cites several potential benefits of its redevelopment, including job creation, tax revenue and transportation improvements.
Opponents have suggested that the wording of Measure J is misleading and could push voters in favor of extending the urban limit line. They take issue with descriptors such as “blighted,” “vacant” and “undeveloped,” pointing out that there are 39 acres of vines still in the ground. The measure also attributes the soil’s salinity to “naturally occurring saltwater intrusion,” but at the LAFCO hearing, Anamosa’s analysis suggested the culprit is the city’s recycled water used for irrigation.
“From a sense of good governance, it riles me that what was put in that ordinance is totally misleading,” said annexation opponent Kahn. “The people in American Canyon will probably say, ‘Hey, it’s not in my backyard, so that’s fine. Go put another warehouse in.’”
As in many previous land-use debates, both advocates and opponents are gearing up for what could be a long fight. One that could be for naught.
Even if Measure J fails, the push for redeveloping Napa County agricultural land will likely continue. Rising housing pressures could ultimately tip the scales, said Freeman.
For years, Napa Valley has been grappling with affordable housing woes; according to Zillow, home values in the area have risen 13% in just the past year. This has worsened Napa Valley’s staffing shortage by making it increasingly difficult for workers in the region’s wine, food and hospitality industries to live within Napa County.
The same wine industry groups fighting against Green Island Vineyard are currently pushing for the site of a former school in the Carneros wine region to be repurposed for farmworker housing. While it’s not protected ag land, it is a sign that the industry recognizes housing as a pressing need, especially with an ongoing labor shortage.
And the county is being forced to act on creating more housing. The Association of Bay Area Governments, which is responsible for dividing up the state housing allocation in the Bay Area, has assigned more than 1,000 homes to Napa County — three times the amount required in previous allocations, said Kahn. The assignment includes building housing in rural areas and in the small cities of Calistoga, St. Helena and Yountville, and the plan must be completed by January 31, 2023.
If these communities can’t find sites to build housing, they will be forced to implement a rezoning program and protected ag land might be the only option, suggested Kahn, who is also a Napa real estate agent. One way or the other, it seems, the precedent Napa’s agricultural industry groups fear will likely be set.
“I don’t know what the county is going to do to meet the housing demands and at a certain point, you would think there would have to be a rebalancing of priorities,” said Freeman. “It sure seems like building housing will take priority over preserving the existing ag and open space lands.”
HOPLAND CEMETERY, THE STRUGGLE TO PRESERVE AND PERSEVERE
by Katharine Cole, President of the Board of Hopland Cemetery Trustees
The little town everyone drives through, just past the green bridge on Highway 101 may not seem like much, but at one time it was the site of the largest Hop farm in the United States (at least that’s what the tourist brochures said), Duncan Springs resort was a booming business, along with a hotel and railstation back in the 1880s when Sanel became “Hop-Land”. Before all that, it was the land of Fernando Feliz, a cattleman with a Spanish land grant of over 17,000 acres and over 10,000 head of cattle grazing in its golden hills. And before that, it was the site of a large Pomo village, Apple Tree Village, boasting up to possibly 1500 indigenous inhabitants at one point, living along the Russian River with land routes from Lakeport along Parsons Creek all the way to the Coast. In 1883, the Catholic clergy built a church and a school along what is now approximately East of the 12000 block of Old River Road, and with that church was a cemetery used until 1907 which gradually disappeared to ruin once the church moved to town. But the Feliz family cemetery was near the town of Old Hopland and as early as 1840, the Feliz family allowed this site to be used for local internments. This is now the Hopland Cemetery.
Flash forward to 2003 – there is a Grand Jury investigation of what is the Hopland Cemetery Special District, which went from having a balance of over $4,000 to a balance of -$4,000, resulting in a recommendation for criminal embezzlement charges over those running the cemetery at the time. Claims had been filed for work never done or even begun, sales of plots without proper legal paperwork, and there was no official records of burials. The plot map was “disappeared” and all seemed to lean towards the County turning the Hopland Cemetery over to the larger Russian River District, but Hoplanders resisted. The Hopland Cemetery was small and local Hoplanders tried to keep the site up as best they could, falling farther and farther behind on maintenance and preservation.
Step in Ted Williams in 2019, newly elected Supervisor of the 5th District which included Hopland and its Hopland Cemetery District. He asked Bob Keiffer (a multi-generational Hoplander whose family owned the largest hop farm, which included the hop barn behind the Hopland Tap, the large barn and farm houses just behind what is now the Thatcher Inn) to become a “Trustee” and to look for other Hoplanders to join him. He found his first more-than-willing co-Trustee in Katharine Cole (myself), a longtime land owner along Old River Road with a penchant for history and cemeteries in particular. Not much later, her partner Yvonne Boyd, along with Nina Kaiser of Full Moon Ranch, and Joan Norry of Old Hopland joined to complete the board of trustees for the first time in almost twenty years.
By the end of the first year with a full board, achievements included completing insurance coverage, holding public meetings (via Zoom and at the Cemetery), reopening the post office box, creating a website and email (hoplandcemetery.com and email@example.com), a popular Facebook page to update the public, and the creation of legal documentation for interments, and required public access to board minutes. Sonoma State volunteer students created a GPS Map Link allowing “Find a Grave” to aid historical researchers as well as assisting family members looking for relatives. By the second year, over seven dead trees were removed and an agreement was reached with the Russian River (Ukiah) Cemetery District to use their professional groundsmen for burials.
There is plenty yet to be done – there is an ongoing need for volunteers to help maintain the cemetery (there are not enough County funds to hire employees), more trees needing to be removed, security improvements need to be continued, as well as the preservation of the historical headstones, and the continual fight to keep both wildlife and humans from harming this historic site.
The Hopland Cemetery is also close to capacity, so burials in the future will be only for those who have family plots or have purchased plots by the end of 2023. In order to continue to preserve and maintain this beautiful historic cemetery, the Trustees are committed to creating a non-profit “Friends of the Hopland Cemetery”, which will allow them to raise additional funds through events and walking tours to protect the site. By the end of 2023, we hope to have mitigated most of the large expensive maintenance issues and begin a new chapter for this little “Boot Hill” in Hopland.
For more information about the Hopland Cemetery, visit HoplandCemetery.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
San Francisco—On August 15, five organizations working together to protect and restore vital North Coast salmon and steelhead fisheries filed suit against the federal agency that regulates the nation’s hydropower dams. The suit alleges the agency violated the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by failing to develop license terms to protect native fish while plans are prepared to decommission the Potter Valley Project’s two dams on the Eel River. The groups – California Trout, Friends of the Eel River, Institute for Fisheries Resources, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations and Trout Unlimited – charge that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is allowing excessive and unlawful “take” of ESA-protected fish species below the dams.
FERC oversees the licensing of hydroelectric facilities like Pacific Gas & Electric’s Potter Valley Project. As part of the terms for its licenses, FERC requires hydropower project owners to consult with federal fisheries biologists at the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to ensure project operations will not lead to the extinction of endangered species. “Take” includes not just the direct killing of endangered species, but also actions that interfere with vital breeding and behavioral activities such as migrating.
The lawsuit asks the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to modify the Annual License FERC recently issued for the Project, in order to comply with the Endangered Species Act.
The 50-year license for the Potter Valley Project expired in April of this year. Shortly thereafter, FERC issued an Annual License for the Project following PG&E’s January 2019 announcement that the company would not seek to renew its license due to significant financial losses incurred from maintaining the Project. FERC recently approved PG&E’s proposed 30-month schedule to develop a plan to decommission the Project, and will continue to issue short term Annual Licenses for the Project until decommissioning is complete.
“This litigation is the first step in making sure FERC and PG&E protect Eel River salmon and steelhead while working toward dam removal,” said Alicia Hamann, Executive Director for Friends of the Eel River. “PG&E operates the fish-killing project, but FERC can change the terms of PG&E’s license to ensure that legally protected salmon and steelhead survive. NMFS has made clear that, as currently operated, the dams are killing and harming far more fish than anybody thought when the current license terms were developed 20 years ago.”
This spring, before the Potter Valley Project’s 50-year license expired, NMFS asked FERC to modify the license to protect declining fish populations, and to consult with NMFS on the best way to do that. Neither PG&E nor FERC has changed operations as NMFS requested.
“The Eel River offers perhaps the best hope for recovery of wild salmon and steelhead stocks in all of California. Once the Potter Valley Project dams are removed, the Eel will become the state’s longest free-flowing river. Hundreds of miles of intact stream habitat in the headwaters of the Eel provide cold, high-quality water and habitat conditions – an excellent fish nursery,” said Redgie Collins, Legal and Policy Director for California Trout. “FERC didn’t do its full due diligence in issuing the Annual License for the Potter Valley Project’s continued operations. Business as usual won’t cut it for Eel River salmon and steelhead, and we are committed to make sure the Annual License process addresses known and increasingly severe adverse impacts on fish until these obsolete dams come out.”
“Salmon and steelhead populations on the West Coast are really struggling right now, and along with them our coastal and inland communities that rely on salmon and steelhead for food and jobs,” said Vivian Helliwell, Watershed Conservation Director for the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations. “The science is clear: restoring the Eel River by removing the outdated dams is incredibly important to our fisheries throughout northern California, and restoring the Eel River is not just good for the fish, it’s part of keeping our river systems healthy, which benefits us all.”
“Our request to the court is simple,” said Matt Clifford, staff attorney for Trout Unlimited’s California Water Project. “NMFS has told FERC that the Potter Valley Project harms salmon and steelhead populations. Despite that harm – which is far greater than previously thought – FERC has allowed PG&E to continue to operate their dams in the same way. We’re asking the court to step in and require FERC and PG&E to do the right thing and protect fish while they are working to decommission this obsolete hydropower facility.”
(Presser from five northcoast conservation groups including Friends of the Eel, CalTrout, Trout Unlimited, Pacific Coast Fishermen’s Association and the Institute for Fiseries Resources.)
BELL SPRINGS BUD BUST
On Friday, August 12, 2022 at about 9:05 PM the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office received a call from a citizen advising there were six (6) Hispanics males walking on Bell Springs Road carrying rifles and wearing camouflaged clothing.
Deputies began responding and contacted the reporting party for more information.
Deputies were advised there were possibly two vehicles involved which were approximately three (3) miles up Bell Springs Road from Highway 101. The vehicles were described as being silver in color and were possibly Honda Civics.
Deputies were told there had been unreported armed home invasions last year in the same area and it was possible the subjects came back again this year.
Due to the nature of the call, the California Highway Patrol and Fish and Wildlife responded to assist Deputies.
Deputies arrived in the area and came across a 2002 silver Honda Accord with Washington plates. This vehicle was occupied by three (3) Hispanic male adults.
The males were detained and identified as being Eirberto Casillas-Garcia, 23, Ricardo Casillas-Garcia, 22, and Manuel Madrigal-Reyna, 31, all from Fresno, California.
The vehicle did not contain any firearms or weapons but had a strong odor of marijuana coming from it. Deputies located approximately 10 pounds of bud marijuana, packaged in one pound bags.
Deputies learned the adult males traveled to Bell Springs Road together, purchased the marijuana from an unknown location, and planned to sell it for a profit.
All the adult males were arrested for transportation of marijuana for sale (and Conspiracy. They were booked into the Mendocino County Jail where they were each to be held in lieu of $20,000 bail.
Deputies further located an unoccupied 2015 silver Honda Civic approximately 0.3 miles from the Honda Accord. The vehicle appeared to have been at the location for some time and uninvolved.
HUGGSIES ALL ROUND
Following a sumptuous spaghetti lunch at the Plowshares Dining Room in Ukiah, California, took a leisurely walk north on State Street to the Co-op. While browsing the current issue of "Meditation" magazine, former housemates from The Magic Ranch walked up and gave me a hearty hello. We shared all of what's been happening with everybody since going our separate ways. Three generations interacting right there, all of the past now a memory only, smiles all around. A good feeling prevails. Today August 18th, 2022 A.D. marks the beginning of the free expression of a Divine Anarchy on the planet earth. You are invited to be part of it. Furthur!!
Craig Louis Stehr
ANDY CAFFREY: This is too funny! My Congressman and opponent in three races, Jared Huffman, has a picture of me on the wall behind his desk! Something he sees every day! lol
It's a cartoon! It's obviously from the 2014 or 2018 race as it includes all three candidates who ran those years: Jared, me & Dale Mensing. I can't read the captions, but it was probably drawn at Dale's and my expense.
But since it is over his shoulder and I suppose in the background of all his video interviews (like this KQED one) shot at that desk, it reminds me of those cartoons with the angel and devil on a persons shoulders. Who to listen to?
Dale is holding guns, so he's gotta be the devil, and it looks like I am taking one hell of a toke on a spliff. But it looks like a cool depiction of me. And I grabbed this shot from an interview in which Jared was asked about… rising sea levels!
So every work day at whichever of his offices this was taped as he approaches his desk, THERE I AM!
Actually, I saw the name over my head first. As my eyes focused I saw that it said CAFFREY! Then it was like WTF! and I looked down and saw that it was obviously above me! Yoo fucking funny! I want a copy!
CATCH OF THE DAY, August 18, 2022
RICARDO CASILLAS-GARCIA, Fresno/Ukiah. Pot possession for sale, pot sales, conspiracy.
KEITH GILCHRIST, Ukiah. Domestic battery.
MARIBEL GONZALEZ-FLORES, Ukiah. Grand theft, burglary, conspiracy. (Booking photo not available.)
STEVEN GREEN, Fort Bragg. Battery with serious injury.
SKYLAR HENDERSON, Willits. DUI, controlled substance, paraphernalia, resisting, probation revocation.
TAWANA HENRY, Ukiah. Shopping cart, camping in Ukiah, storing camping paraphernalia, paraphernalia.
NONA HOAGLEN, Covelo. DUI.
MICHAEL MENKE, Ukiah. Shopping cart, unlawful camping in public park, storing camping paraphernalia.
SHAWN POTE, Ukiah. Probation revocation, resisting.
ALEXI RANGEL, Ukiah. DUI, suspended license for DUI, probation revocation.
MARCOS RODRIGUEZ-TURNER, Ukiah. Domestic battery, protective order violation, parole violation.
AARON SCHLEICH, Healdsburg/Ukiah. Failure to appear, resisting.
KC STILLWELL, Covelo. Attempt to receive stolen property.
GREGORY THOMPKINS, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, failure to appear, probation revocation.
MARIO TRUJILLO, Ukiah. Domestic battery, false imprisonment.
DAVID WORTHY, Ukiah. Failure to register.
JENNIFER YONKERS, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.
STOP THE DIABLO EXTENSION & BAILOUT
$79 billion for dangerously old nukes
The Inflation Reduction Act contains $73 billion in federal taxpayer bailouts for dangerously age-degraded atomic reactors, according to a NIRS analysis. The 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law contains an additional $6 billion for old reactor bailouts. Tellingly, Palisades in Michigan ("permanently closed" on May 20), and the soon-to-shut Diablo Canyon reactors in California (supposedly ineligible under the Energy Department's own Civil Nuclear Credit program rules), are lead candidates for the first round of bailouts. They also share similar extreme risks. Palisades and Diablo Canyon Unit 1 each have among the very worst embrittled reactor pressure vessels in the country, at risk of pressurized thermal shock core meltdowns. They also violate seismic safety -- including at Palisades' irradiated nuclear fuel dry cask storage.
Governor Newsom has now introduced a bill to allow for the continued operation of Diablo Canyon by a vague “five or ten years”. The draft of this bill includes shortcuts and sweeping exemptions from environmental review from State permitting agencies. It also promises to “loan” PG&E up to $1.4 billion to cover costs of extending Diablo Canyon’s operating life – with all of the loan potentially “forgivable”. It agrees to pay PG&E $7 per every megawatt-hour of power generated which would mean an annual subsidy exceeding $120 million.
Ralph Cavanaugh from NRDC notes that the bill makes no reference to the settlement agreement governing the plant’s retirement in 2025 – which was reached in 2016 and endorsed by the legislature in 2018.
Nor does it mention energy efficiency or demand response measures as a potential response to California’s reliability challenges. The findings used to justify these extraordinary provisions include no citations to published studies by any California regulator or agency recommending a further life extension for Diablo Canyon. There are none.
Take Immediate Action to STOP the extended operation of Diablo Canyon, this bill will be voted on by August 31st
UKRAINE, THURSDAY, AUGUST 18, 2022
by Josh Lederman, Mary-Ann Russon & Reuters
ZAPORIZHZHIA, Ukraine — On Thursday, Russia threatened to shut down the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, warning that there was a risk of a human-made disaster due to alleged continued shelling by Ukraine.
Russia has allegedly told workers at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant not to show up to work Friday, Ukrainian military intelligence has exclusively confirmed to NBC News.
This comes amid allegations and speculation from both Russia and Ukraine that an incident is being planned Friday at the plant.
On Thursday, Russia threatened to shut down the plant, warning that there was a risk of a human-made disaster due to alleged continued shelling by Ukraine.
But Ukraine has a completely different story, according to Andriy Yusov, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Defense Ministry’s Main Intelligence Directorate.
“There is new information, it arrived about half an hour ago, that for tomorrow, August 19, there is an order for the majority of the staff not to go to work,” Yusov told NBC News.
“This is what the Russians told their people, primarily the employees of Rosatom,” he said, referring to the Russian nuclear agency.
He said that this might be evidence that Russia is preparing “large-scale provocations” at the power plant Friday.
"Far more people than you will ever realize are on the verge of breaking, asking tough questions of themselves, fearful of the future. Walk gently and listen."
IF EVERYONE IS KING THEN NO ONE IS
by Caitlin Johnstone
The concept of "wealth hoarding" has gained traction in the wake of the Occupy movement and the Bernie Sanders presidential campaigns, the idea being that billionaires are amassing treasure like mythical dragons in the same way someone with a hoarding disorder amasses newspapers or clothes.
It's an understandable way of looking at the problem. The capitalist class is indeed grabbing up a greater and greater percentage of the wealth that's being generated by the working class, and it just doesn't make sense that someone would need billions of dollars when you can only drive one car at a time, wear one pair of pants at a time, eat one meal at a time, etc.
For normal people, the idea of wealth is associated with security, so once your family's needs are met and their future is secure it's hard to understand the impulse to keep amassing wealth far beyond that point without it being driven by some kind of compulsive neurosis. The fact that they pour so much money and energy into manipulating political systems to ensure they aren't forced by taxation to share more of their wealth with the public makes them look even more like compulsive hoarders.
But this notion of vast wealth as a hoarding behavior misses the mark. And no, it isn't because billionaires are awesome beneficent job creators whose wealth is being used by banks to grant people loans for homes and businesses and making the world a wonderful place to live.
It doesn't work to think of the very rich as wealth hoarders because what they are doing has very little in common with the behavior of a compulsive hoarder. A compulsive hoarder gains nothing from their behavior, which generally ends up being self-destructive and socially alienating. It costs them everything, and gives them nothing. Their behavior is born of neurosis, and is entirely irrational.
The so-called wealth hoarders are not amassing wealth at the expense of others out of neurosis, and the motives driving their behavior are perfectly rational. They're just a lot more depraved and a lot more uncomfortable to think about.
The ruling class continually extracts wealth from the public not so that they can become wealthier than they already are, but to keep the public from having that wealth. They're not worried that they'll be unable to support their needs in the future if they don't extract another billion dollars, they just understand that the wealthier everyone else gets, the less their own wealth matters. They're not wealth-hoarding, they're wealth-obstructing.
Wealth is a zero-sum game, as is its good friend power. The more power everyone else has, the less power our current rulers would have over us. This is why so much energy goes into ensuring that votes have as little effect as possible on the operations of the state and making sure everything stays the same no matter what the public wants.
Imagine if ordinary people started having as much influence over the direction human civilization will take as war profiteers, oil tycoons, globalized wage slavers and Silicon Valley plutocrats. Imagine if the working class had enough disposable income to begin funding grassroots political campaigns, building their own media networks, or even funding think tanks and NGOs to advance their own interests like plutocrats do today. Imagine if everyone could afford to work less and relax more, and finally start learning about what's really going on in the world.
Wealth is meaningless if everyone is wealthy. Power is meaningless if everyone has power. The kings of our day have a vested interest in keeping everyone poor and powerless, because if everyone is king, then no one is king.
This is why our status quo systems work the way they work, and this is why you see a convergence of interests from such groups as corporate plutocrats, plutocrat-owned politicians and media, the arms industry, and military and intelligence agencies. These groups all have a vested interest in preserving the status quo and the ability to put that agenda in place, so they've fallen into a natural, de facto alliance with each other toward that end.
It's why we've seen a historic upward transfer of wealth during the Covid pandemic, with billionaires raking in trillions while ordinary people struggle with unemployment and soaring prices. And it's why that transfer of wealth has been happening for decades since long before Covid. In a system where money is power and power is relative, a ruling class naturally emerges which needs to suppress the wealth and power of its subjects in order to continue to rule.
Rulers do not historically give up their rule voluntarily, so we can expect this continual pattern of wealth obstruction via wealth extraction to continue until people get tired of being kept poor and powerless by those who benefit from their poverty and disempowerment and use the strength of their numbers to force the emergence of a more equitable system. We can also expect our rulers to do everything in their power to prevent this from happening, including propagandizing the public into accepting the status quo and believing that anything better is impossible.
Drastic change in the not-too-distant future does seem to be inevitable, though, if only because we're headed toward environmental collapse or nuclear winter if we don't rise to the revolutionary occasion first. Humanity's self-destructive patterning is in a race with our better angels, and right now it's anybody's race.
ON-LINE COMMENTS OF THE DAY
(1) I had my first donut in awhile a few days ago, driving down to the Sound and just had a hankering for a donut. Pulled over at a Dunkin Donuts — even in the little town it was pretty busy. Ordered a coffee and a few chocolate frosted donuts — I can’t describe how good the donuts were.
2) Cake donuts, I’ll bet. I must admit, I could probably eat a dozen if they were put in front of me. That’s why I never let that happen. I do admit to liking a bagel now and then, though. My weakness/avoidance is the green chile cheese bagels they sell here locally. Can’t get near them for fear of a binge coming on. My green eyed chile monster comes out.
Speaking of which, has anyone noticed that Disney’s coming out with “She Hulk: Attorney at Law”? She’s green, she’s large, and she’ll sue your ass into submission! Rumor has it, she single-handedly intimidated Deshaun Watson into settling with the NFL.
On Aug 13, 1922 this Hialeah Indians baseball team managed by G.R. "Bob" Millard wearing the bow tie defeated the Highland Park team 6 to 3 at the Hialeah diamond. The field was located next to the Miami Studios at W 9th Street and W 3rd Avenue in Hialeah. Notice the uniform patch of Seminole leader Jack Tigertail “pointing the way to Hialeah” a miniature version of the giant wood sign on Okeechobee Rd. Shortly after this photo was taken the team uniform was changed to include shirts made by the Seminole tribe having all the Seminole Tribe colors. Members of the local Seminole Tribe sometimes accompanied the team to the games.
HOW TO KILL A NEWSPAPER
How a Soviet-born developer and a West Virginia billionaire destroyed a 141-year-old Colorado newspaper
by Andrew Travers
Here in Aspen, the air is thin, the snow is perfect, and money is everywhere. This is a singular American town in many respects. Among them is this: Aspen had, until very recently, two legitimate daily newspapers, The Aspen Times and the Aspen Daily News. At a moment when local newspapers face manifold threats to their existence and more and more American cities become news deserts, Aspen was the opposite: a news geyser. The town’s corps of reporters covers small-town tropes like high-school musicals and the Fourth of July parade. But Aspen’s journalists are also the watchdogs and chroniclers of one of the richest towns in America and a site of extreme economic inequality, the exemplar of the phenomenon that academics call “super-gentrification,” where — as the locals often say — “the billionaires are forcing out the millionaires.”
I joined The Aspen Times as an editor in 2014, after a seven-year tenure at the Aspen Daily News. The Times has published since 1881, when Aspen was a silver-mining boomtown, through its postwar rebirth as a ski resort, and now as the home of ideas festivals, wine festivals, $50 entrees, and an awe-inspiring collection of private jets, many owned by billionaires deeply concerned about climate change. The paper, which was based for much of its history in a purple-painted building between a drugstore and the Hotel Jerome, developed a reputation for shoe-leather reporting and accountability journalism.
On Thanksgiving 2021, the start of ski season, the Times editorial team numbered 13, including four reporters who had been covering our town since at least the 1990s. We were treated well by our parent company, Swift Communications. Our paper was profitable, owing largely to real-estate advertising. We seemed to be a safe harbor for small-town journalists.
We were wrong.
My story is populated by blue bloods and thin-skinned billionaires, including the owners of the Pittsburgh Pirates, a litigious Soviet-born developer, and the wealthy cousin of a U.S. Supreme Court justice. Its drama unfolds in a superficially idyllic mountain community where a 1969 mayoral candidate’s slogan, “Sell Aspen or Save It,” still sums up its core conflict. (The following year, Hunter S. Thompson mounted his “Freak Power” campaign for sheriff; upon losing, he gave a concession speech at the Hotel Jerome in a Founding Father–style wig. “I proved what I set out to prove,” he said, “that the American Dream really is fucked.”)
Aspen is strange, but this is a story that could actually take place anywhere. It’s about what happens to the public interest when billionaires collide, and when newsrooms are bullied into suppressing coverage by people with great mountains of money and battalions of lawyers. And it speaks to a deepening crisis for the free press, which has been comprehensively betrayed in Aspen.…
THE GROSS INEQUALITY OF US PASTIME
Baseball has always, of course, had wealthy team owners. But the intense concentration of wealth in the United States over the past 50 years has fundamentally altered the sport’s landscape. Back in the much more equal America of the mid-20th century, owners and fans had a somewhat mutually dependent relationship. Rich people might own baseball’s franchises, the industry’s movers and shakers understood, but their teams — to be successful — had to belong to their fans. A franchise simply could not flourish, the conventional wisdom assumed, without support from average families.
That assumption no longer holds. In the exceedingly unequal America that emerged in the 1980s, the economy no longer revolves around average households. In this new America, income and wealth tilt precipitously toward the top, and owners tilt that way, too. Today’s owners no longer covet the average fan. The average fan spends only average money. The real money, in our much more unequal America, sits in affluent pockets.
Easily affordable seats have essentially disappeared. Analysts at the Team Marketing Report started tracking a “Fan Cost Index” in the 1990s. These analysts have been calculating how much a typical family of four spends for a day or a night out at the ballpark, including everything from average-price tickets and souvenir caps to hot dogs and parking. By 2002, families were paying an average $145 to watch a Major League Baseball game in person. The latest tally an average $256.