Press "Enter" to skip to content

Mendocino County Today: Thursday, Jan. 19, 2023

Frosty Clear | Abalone Line | Creekside Update | Community Service | 101 Slipout | Schoolkids | Agostino Tarantino, III | Open House | Tall Trestle | Huffman Visit | Pothole Marker | AVHC Experience | Hammond Crew | Local Park | Woodwork Show | Williams Critique | Lumberyard | Reverse-Stiltskins | 49ers | MAC Donations | Piano Recital | Conrad Bullwinkle | Palace Thoughts | Essay Contest | Gold Miners | Axe Alternatives | Eureka Five | Ed Notes | Bigfoot | Positive Parenting | Yorkville Listing | Engine 8 | Just Rain | Berry's Place | Yesterday's Catch | Releasing Water | Class Portrait | Stormwater Management | Sako NY | Stehr Ukiah | Rent Control | Raskin MX | Elizabeth Mahon | Scariest Team | Ticket Prices | Cowboy Cuddle | Ukraine | Sub-Marginal | Profit Tyranny | Cheesy Ad

* * *

SUNSHINE RETURNS behind a departing cold front. Cold over night lows can be expected with clear skies over a drying airmass. No precipitation forecast over the next 7 days. (NWS)

* * *

Abalone shells strung along Wilderness Drive off of Branscomb Rd (photo by Jeff Goll)

* * *


On Friday, January 20, 2023, Mendocino County Social Services staff along with the Sheriff’s Office, Legal Aid and other resource agencies will be meeting with all residents to discuss plans going forward, including relocation if the resident so chooses. As the housing at the site is varied, resource plans for potential removal will have to be addressed on a residence by residence basis.

Additionally, County staff, Caltrans and contractors will be meeting at the site today, to work on logistics for the temporary bridge to allow residents to exit the property. Traffic control measures will be in place at the site on Hwy 101 from January 24, 2023 through January 27, 2023 while the bridge is installed, utilized and subsequently removed.

The County continues to encourage the public to avoid the area so that County staff, resource agencies and contractors can perform any needed work and provide assistance safely

* * *

* * *

CONTINUE TO EXPECT ONE WAY TRAFFIC ON HWY 101 at Humboldt/Mendocino County Line

Travelers headed south on Hwy 101 face a bumpy road roughly from just barely north of the Humboldt/Mendocino County line on Hwy 101 to .1 miles north of the Hartsook Inn. Caltrans has a one-way traffic control operation in place due to a slip out in the area.…

* * *

Crannell Elementary Class, 1943

* * *


Agostino Tarantino, III, known to most as Tino, passed away the day before his 61st birthday after a stroke. Tino was born on October 13, 1961, to Augustino Tarantino, Jr. and Janet Marrison (d.2010).

In Tino's early years, he brought joy and laughter to his family and friends by entertaining them with his lively singing, dancing, and playful skits. Some of his best adventures were with his sister and cousins playing outside until dark, building forts, riding bikes, and going to the beach. In middle school, Tino met his art teacher and coach, Mr. Barnes (David Barnes d. 2022), and from that point, his life took on a whole new meaning. A little-known secret about Tino is that he was a talented artist because of Mr. Barnes, who profoundly impacted Tino with his values of dedication, passion, loyalty, and tenacity. These values instilled in Tino the importance of hard work, honesty, and loving what you do, which guided him for the rest of his life. Tino began running in middle school after being recruited by Mr. Barnes from his art class. He achieved an accomplished track & cross-country career throughout high school, and his track record at Fort Bragg High remains undefeated after many decades. Before graduating from high school, Tino took his hand at the family business and spent the summer fishing on the Tarantino, III (his namesake). He decided then he better go to college because fishing was a hard way to make a living.

After Tino graduated from Fort Bragg High in 1979, he earned a degree in Computer Science at Sacramento State University. While in college, Tino continued to pursue his love for track and field and qualified for the Junior Olympics in the 1600-meter run. After graduation, his first job was at Unify, which would later become Oracle. Tino was a finance software consultant with Oracle spanning over 35 years. His career allowed travel to many parts of the US, where he met and worked with the most amazing people. His clients and colleagues highly respected Tino for the expert knowledge and creativity he brought to his field and thought of him as family.

Tino married his college sweetheart, Jerri Jo Harris, from Loudonville, Ohio, and had a beautiful daughter Samatha Jo Tarantino. Tino lived in Ohio for most of his life, surrounded by a loving extended family. While he and his wife, Jerri Jo, chose different paths, they remained friends and were devoted to raising their daughter. In addition to running, Tino enjoyed downhill skiing and was an avid cyclist and a genuine thrill seeker. No slope was too steep, race too long, a hill too high, or rollercoaster that was too fast. He loved traveling to Hawaii and taking in a live game with his college roommate Kevin Fisher and the gang. He loved Italian food, dark beer, a nice Chianti, and his daughter's cooking, who is now a chef in LA. He made a dream come true when he and his daughter, the love of his life, vacationed in Italy, where they ate, drank, zipped tied, and rode Vespas throughout the countryside. Another dream he fulfilled was completing the Pelotonia from Columbus to New Albany.

Early in 2020, Tino returned to California, where he spent time between his sister's house in Fort Bragg and Los Angeles, where his daughter lives. He took the most pleasure in visiting his high school alma mater and reflecting on his glory days as a cross-country and track star. Tino enjoyed outings, driving through his old neighborhoods, and reminiscing about his friends and family. He did a little cooking and loved football. He was a 49ers fan to the end and loved the Ohio Buckeyes. Tino had a kind, generous, and beautiful soul and will be missed deeply beyond measure. Survived by Tino is his daughter Samantha Jo Tarantino, father Augustino Tarantino Jr., and step-mom Linda Tarantino, sister Michelle Tarantino-Norvell (Bernie Norvell), niece Tanisha Norvell, nephew Lane Norvell (Taylor Stonebarger-Norvell), uncle Bill Westfall, first cousins, Elisa Westfall-Hickey, Maria Westfall-Sloane (Marcel Sloane), Dougie Tarantino, Nancy Tarantino-Liliffe (Stewart Liliffe), Gus Tarantino (Jean Tarantino), Steve Tarantino, and cousins Laura Celeri (Don Celeri), Justin Celeri, Denise Hardcastle (Russell Hardcastle), many more beloved cousins in Monterey, CA and the Harris family of Loudonville OH.

Please join Tino's family and friends for a Celebration of Life Saturday, January 21, 2023, at the Tarantino-Norvell residence at 840 Myrtle Street, Fort Bragg, CA., to honor Tino's life and legacy and to enjoy his favorite Italian meal.

Tino's family has established a scholarship fund through the Fort Bragg Unified School District in the name of Agostino Tarantino, III, to support a student-athlete entering into a career in Technology. FBUSD, 312 S. Lincoln St., FB CA 95437 (707-961-2850) FEIN: 87-3150840.

* * *


Come learn about classes the Adult School offers and register for the Winter/Spring 2023 semester!

Sunday, January 22nd, 11:30-1:30

Location: The Adult School, 12300 Anderson Valley Way, Boonville (behind the Elementary School, next to Peachland Preschool).

Free food! Bring a friend or a family member who is interested in taking a class!

For more information: 895-2953 / / Facebook Anderson Valley Adult School/Escuela de Adultos de Anderson Valley

Maggie Von Vogt

School Co-Coordinator & Language Teacher

Anderson Valley Adult School

Office: 707-895-2953

* * *

Building the Trestle over Balke Creek, 1907

* * *


Dear Anderson Valley Community,

Exciting times! There are more than 330 million people in the United States and only 435 United States’ Congressman. I am delighted that one Congressman, Jared Huffman, is coming to visit your kids on Monday at 10:30. 

We have turned this into a school-wide learning opportunity. Our facilities are in dire need of support. You know my story, two failed septic systems, facilities that are 70 years old, an uncertified shop building. A full school rally will take place outside of the gym in front of the porta-potties. Student body president, Eric Perez Rodriguez will welcome the Congressman. Athletes will dress up. Cheerleaders in uniforms and FFA in their full conference dress. We show pride. Students have created welcome signs (still in progress). A small group of 50 will visit with the Congressman.

Democracy in action. Bottom line…We need some help. This community has stepped up two times with bond measures. We need some Federal support for our kids.

So grateful to Congressman Huffman for his time and energy. If you have time, join us in front of the gym Monday at 10:20 to greet him. In my whole career, I have never had a congressman come to visit. Let’s hope for partnership for our kids.

Sincerely yours,

Louise Simson, Superintendent

Anderson Valley Unified School District

Every Student • Every Possibility • No Matter What

Cell: 707-684-1017

* * *

* * *


A lot of you will remember fondly the small town atmosphere and the feeling of being taken care of at the Anderson Valley Health Center in Boonville. Well up until about 3 years ago that was how things ran at the clinic but now, well let's just say the place delivers a horrible experience from beginning to end. The one, and the only bright spot is the primary care physician that replaced the retiring Mark Apfel. But getting an appointment to see the doctor these days is an impossibility.

Here is what happens if you call to make an appointment... First you get a recording that puts you on hold for up to 5 minutes, then a receptionist, if you can call her that, answers the phone and proceeds to tell you the Doctor is booked until March, 2 months? Seriously? The “receptionist” must be convinced your health care needs are worth getting you into the clinic sooner. After answering some questions and pleading your case to be worthy enough you are told the nurse will be given your information and will call you right back. But the nurse rarely ever calls back so you call again but this time you ask to be transferred directly to the nurse because asking to speak to the doctor directly is not on the list of possibilities. It's like the front desk staff has been told, Do not let patients talk to the doctor. You can leave a message for him but the couple times I did that I am sure that the message was never given to the doctor because he never got back to me since. So you get transfered to the nurse's line and you are put on hold and if you're lucky enough to get through it's a frigging recording. The last time I got transferred to the nurse no one ever did answer, I waited on hold for 15 minutes and no one answered! I called back again but now it's a different receptionist who starts asking all of the questions I answered to the other receptionist. They transfer me to the nurse, I wait 5 minutes and they hang up on me.

What a colossal waste of time.

* * *

Hammond Lumber, Crannell, 1932

* * *


Hello Anderson Valley Community,

I am reaching out again as we need new members to join our Anderson Valley Parks & Recreation Committee!

With the AV Community Services District (AVCSD) formally acquiring the land around our local park, our next step will be the application for funding to bring all our ideas for improvements, including the amazing Skate Park, into reality!

Our first target is the Clean California Local Grant which provides funds to local communities to beautify and improve local streets and roads, tribal lands, parks, pathways, and transit centers. But to receive this grant will take a lot of planning and hard work and we need your help! 

We meet on the 4th WEDNESDAYS of each month from 2:15-3:15pm and commitment can be as simple as attending those meetings (in person or via Zoom). For those with a little more time and energy, you may also dedicate a few more hours a month towards helping develop plans for park improvements or coordinating contacts and resources for new park developments and to support the grant application. 

We'd love to have fresh energy and new ideas as we look to broaden the park and recreational services available here in Anderson Valley.

If you have ANY interest in joining us, please don't hesitate to reach out to me or simply come to our next meeting scheduled for Wednesday, January 25 @2:15pm at the AV Fire Department building in Boonville.

* * *

THE KRENOV SCHOOL of Fine Woodworking: Students are back and hard at work finishing their projects! 

The Midwinter Show opens January 28 at the TC Space in beautiful downtown Fort Bragg.

* * *



In a recent Letter to the Editor in the Independent Coast Observer (ICO, out of Gualala) Alan Levine of the Coast Action Group was highly critical of Fifth District Supervisor Ted Williams with regard to water policy decrying that Supes are failing the county (generally) on water policy and that Williams is failing his district (specifically) concluding with: “Continued support of Ted Williams will only lead to more of the same: lack of support for the Mendocino South Coast.”

Discussions around county water brings up painful memories of events that occurred in my own 2018 bid for the 5th district seat, during the primary round one of the candidates was Dave Roderick, Dave suggested that the coast needed to invest in creating water storage infrastructure. 

Williams cranked up a lot of PR opposing the idea basically framing Dave as some sort of development-mad ideologue who was out of step with coastal sensibilities.

The smear campaign that Williams generated was personally painful to Dave. More recently I see that Fort Bragg is investing in the exact type of programs that Dave was advocating for. Although Dave and I were vying for the same seat, and there was a fair bit of distance in our political ideology, I found him to be a good and honorable man, and it was painful to watch him get dragged through the mud for someone’s political benefit.

This is a very typical Williams campaign tactic: stoke liberal fears of rightwing boogeyman, win the election, and start cashing paychecks.

In 2018 Williams positioned himself as a local boy with the smarts and savvy to lead the county out of its lethargy. He produced amusing videos, positioning himself as the young, energetic, tech-savvy local boy who was going to get things moving. He had lots of ideas. The county pot program he thought the county should make it a one page application with a $25 fee. Flash! Bling! Ask any small farmer what they think of the county’s pot program: you will invariably hear a sad story filled with frustration and bankruptcy.

On housing Williams proposed during a candidate forum using 3-D printers to make structures for the unhoused. Flash! Bling! Of course it never happened and the housing situation in our County remains untackled by this Board, while we hemorrhage workers and businesses are literally closing.

County roads: Ted proposed using recycled plastics in the road base to save cost. Flash! Bling! Has anyone seen any improvements to county roads? (Rhetorical question.)

Another tactic that Williams uses: In online forums set up and “moderated” by his supporters, citizens criticize Ted’s opponents. To the casual observer these people appear to have credibility. However what is really the case is that these individuals are psychologially frail individuals whom Ted grooms, they have some type of strange hero fixation on him, then Ted deploys them.

Some of my criticisms are undoubtedly unfair. The zeitgeist around us is a big one and county supervisor is a pretty low rung on the political ladder. But still, Williams uses deceit, and Machiavellian distortion in the hopes that no one actually notices our abysmal state of county affairs. 

They don’t even have their financial books straight; and SEIU employees are pleading with the board for relief. While Williams’ lack of a moral compass might be forgivable if he were at least competent, it appears we will have to wait until the next election cycle. Hopefully we can do better.

Chris Skyhawk

Fort Bragg

* * *

Lumber Yard at Bulwinkle, 1920

* * *


Reverse Rumpelstiltskins

How inept politicians have turned gold into straw.

It appears that Mendocino County isn’t the only entity that can’t budget properly. As she was exiting the building, CEO Carmel Angelo confidently claimed the County had a $20M surplus. Hosannas rang throughout the land. This year, the County is projecting a $12M deficit. But County Supervisor Ted Williams has repeatedly commented that the Board of Stuporvisors doesn’t know how bad the budget deficit is. Is it because the County has three sets of books, Ted?

And so it is with the state of CA. Our reverse Rumpelstiltskin Governor is turning CA gold into straw. Last year the state budget had, purportedly, a $31B surplus. The current budget shows a $22.5B deficit. But the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) in a recent report says the budget is a fantasy and the deficit will be even worse. More details.…/calif-legislative…/

The LAO says the state — and I would recommend the County heed this advice — needs to cut costs. Or swirl the financial drain.

Meanwhile, most voters don’t see the connection between these problems and the officials they elect to represent them. Alas.

(John Redding)

* * *


* * *


Thanks to YOU, our amazing community of supporters for donating to the Mendocino Art Center’s 2022 year end appeal. We raised $25,000 of the $50,000 target match from the community. This generosity will enable the MAC to continue our dynamic Ceramics, Artists-in-Residence, and expanded Youth programs.

Though the support was generous, it did not meet expectations as the MAC grapples with a significant overall budgetary shortfall. To help address this issue, the opportunity for the $25,000 match has been extended to June 2023.

Donations may be made at

While these matching donations will help sustain us in the short term, we have had to begin to seriously regroup. We will work with our Community Advisory Council and other stakeholders to explore and develop a forward looking and sustainable direction and Strategic Plan for the MAC. Many people have reached out to us with concern for the future of the MAC. We want to reassure you that the Board is committed to maintaining the quality of art in our galleries and classes, even though the quantity may be reduced. The MAC Board has stepped up to perform many of the tasks required to sustain activities for the near future.

Staffing and some traditional programs such as Fine Art, Fiber Arts and Jewelry have been temporarily downsized. Our gallery program, critical to our mission, will be managed by the Exhibitions Committee made up of Board members and volunteers.

The MAC Board is dedicated to fundraising and changing our strategic and business plans to address the present needs of the community for art. We have updated mission and vision statements based on our community outreach that can be the foundation for our goals and strategies moving forward. Art is so important, especially now, in our uncertain and challenging times. We have a sense of hope and opportunity as we regroup and redevelop the Mendocino Art Center, the place where art happens!

We welcome any input from the community. Please contact the MAC at to volunteer to assist in our crafting of a new vision or to give us your thoughts and suggestions.

It’s never too late to give to MAC as we continue toward our match.

Thank you so much for caring about the Art Center.

Mendocino Art Center Board of Directors: Debra Lennox, President • Patrick Keller, Vice President • Dr. Don Paglia, Secretary • Todd Sheffield, Treasurer • Todd Cole • Dale Moyer • Janis Porter • Lucia Zacha

* * *

MEET PIANO VIRTUOSO DANIELA MINEVA! This Sunday 3 PM in Preston Hall, Mendocino. 

Tickets at

Ms. Mineva will perform an exciting program of classic favorites and new acquaintances. L van Beethoven, M. Bond, O. Messiaen, and R. Schumann and others will be featured! Ms. Mineva will talk about each piece in a concert that promises real positive excitement during this dark and wet January!

Office: 707-964-0898

* * *

Conrad Bullwinkle, Little River Valley, Humboldt

* * *

READER AND PALACE HOTEL REHAB CRITIC JOHN ARTEAGA ASKS: “I wonder what the good Major thinks about all this?” referring to Ms. Shankar’s plans for rehabbing Ukiah’s dilapidated old Palace Hotel. “I guess he's a procurement guy with a realistic head on his shoulders about what things cost and what they can be expected to return. What's your opinion on this nonsense Prof. Scaramella? I wonder if you agree more with me that this project doesn't even begin to pass the back of the envelope test of financial feasibility?”

MARK SCARAMELLA REPLIES: I’m willing to give Ms. Shankar and her youthful and energetic crew the benefit of the doubt for the time being. If she wants to sink some money into rejuvenating the Palace Hotel, who am I to gainsay it? Sure, the economics seem a bit strained because Ukiah isn’t exactly a major tourist mecca. But neither is Merced, which Ms. Shankar and her team cites as a model for her admittedly ambitious plans. As far as I can tell the rehab of Merced’s old Tioga Hotel in Merced seems viable so far with a creative combination of apartments, hotel rooms and retail space.

And the recent rehab of the old Thatcher Inn in Hopland seems to be holding up and staying open. According to recent press coverage, Ms. Shankar and her crew are aware that the corner brickwork section of the building (one of three) is probably not salvageable. But other parts may be, although probably not as structural components. Reportedly, Ms. Shankar will be presenting some preliminary plans to the Ukiah City Council this month. Let’s give her a chance to make her case before we write off the Palace project. The primary obstacle will probaby be the City of Ukiah and their misguided planning bureaucracy, not the economics or demolition and/or renovation itself.

The biggest problem facing Ukiah (and the County) is the pending abandonment of the old downtown courthouse next door to the Palace and the plopping down of a clearly unjustified new concrete bunker/courthouse over by the railroad tracks which benefits no one but our nine judges. Yet no one in official Ukiah has objected to it. I’d prefer that Mr. Arteaga spend more time trying to inform his readers of that ridiculous judicial folly that will do a lot more harm to Ukiah and the County than Ms. Shankar could ever dream of. 

* * *


Local High School Students Vie for $1700 in prizes

Essay Contest Requires Research and Argument

In a project designed to get Fort Bragg High School students thinking and writing about their school name, the grassroots community nonprofit Change Our Name announces an essay contest asking students to write on the subject “The Name of Fort Bragg High School Should be Changed” or “The Name of Fort Bragg High School Should Not be Changed.”

Explained Change Our Name: “Of course the 300 or so folks who are part of our group are clearly in favor of a name change given Braxton Bragg’s role as a General in the Confederate Army and as a slaveholder and the Fort’s historical role in dispossessing the original Indigenous inhabitants of our land. But we realize that many people and many students don’t know this history. So the contest will impel them to research and make up their own minds about the issue. The essays will be judged not on whether the students agree with us but on the breadth of their research and the force of their arguments for or against the name change.”

Contest prizes will be $1,000 first prize, $500 second place and $200 third place. The judging will be independent of Change Our Name by five community leaders unaffiliated with Change Our Name: Angela Dominguez who serves on the Board of the League of Women Voters of Mendocino County and serves as Manager of the Fort Bragg Food Bank; Matt LaFever, Editor of the online news site MendoFever, who teaches English and Journalism at Ukiah High School; Blanca Pena, a Psychotherapist who was a 2022 candidate for Fort Bragg City Council; Jane Person, current Secretary and Past President of the League of Women Voters and a retired high school English teacher; and Loreto Rojas, who holds degrees in Pedagogy of Spanish Language and in Journalism and Mass Communication. She teaches Spanish at Mendocino College and co-hosts MendoLatino and Talking About CA., both available as podcasts from KZYX.

Entrees will be accepted from February 1, 2023 to March 30, 2023 and should be sent as Word pop Google docs attachments to

More information and all contest rules can be found at

Change Our Name is a California nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation dedicated to changing the name of Fort Bragg, CA. as one step towards educating citizens on American History and racial justice.

“…Fort’s historical role in dispossessing the original Indigenous inhabitants of our land. But we realize that many people and many students don’t know this history. So the contest will impel them to research and make up their own minds about the issue. The essays will be judged not on whether the students agree with us but on the breadth of their research and the force of their arguments for or against the name change.”

* * *

THE MENDOCINO COAST'S history re-write committee is sponsoring a Fort Bragg Name Change student essay contest, pro or con, with the con end of the argument unlikely to win any of the cash. Should Fort Bragg's name be changed? Of course not, but it gives virtue signalers a no risk opportunity to demonstrate their righteousness, to solidify their view that all us slobs out here approve of slavery, the slaughter of Indians and all the other atrocities our fine, fat country has implausibly survived to become what we are, which isn't particularly bad, imo, or certainly no worse than the histories of most countries.

* * *

Gold Miners, California

* * *


HARK! FROM ANNIE EXPOSITO: On KZYX last evening, they had the usual call-in show at 7. But this time the manager and the board president were there to field calls about the recent firing of Program Director Alicia Littletree Bales. Calls were 13 to 1 opposed to the action. In the almost 4 years she has been there, Alicia transformed the station to where it became relevant and diverse. Of course the management is legally constrained from giving any reasons. But it wasn't one big offense or anything. It was a difference of opinions and personalities over a long period. A year and a half ago, there was a mediation that worked for some time. Then things degraded again. But instead of returning to mediation, the manager just fired Alicia point blank. She got paid for the rest of the month and outstanding vacation - that's all; and she is a single mom with a monthly rent to meet. Even so, it is a bigger problem for a station that had finally become truly community-oriented radio. There had to have been alternatives to the axe. 

* * *

Lada's Louisiana Five, Eureka

* * *


KZYX, the never ending drama: Marty Durlin: “One of my first tasks was to find a new program director and I recruited and hired Alicia Bales who I knew through a friend and from her participation in National Community Radio conferences. She was a skilled and highly qualified candidate. She knew Mendocino County and we hired her. I encouraged and supported Alicia until, despite her impressive achievements, I could no longer support her. I’m really sorry it came to that.”

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the billionaires assembled at Davos that the world is in a “sorry state” because of myriad “interlinked” challenges including climate change and Russia's war in Ukraine that are “piling up like cars in a chain reaction crash.”

YES, and a perfect metaphor for serial bad news, a massive freeway pile-up with several of the vehicles carrying nukes. Meanwhile, in the bucolic Anderson Valley, which is more bucolic the farther you climb into the hills, but on the Valley floor income levels are described by people who measure these things as Appalachian, now more Appalachian than ever with the collapse of the marijuana market, which used to provide ostensible poor people with a nice cash income.

AGAINST the accumulating catastrophes, compare any or all the current elected leadership with, say, Roosevelt's administration. Most current elected leaders, and this just might be me, look silly, childish even, none of them inspiring any confidence whatsoever. 

INTERESTING article in this morning's NYT on cockfighting, a very big underground recreation right here in Mendocino County, along with the much less frequent but always popular dog fights.

THE TIMES PIECE BEGINS: “According to some rooster men, the game fowl, or fighting chicken, was almost chosen to be the national bird of America. ‘And it should’ve,’ a breeder once told me. ‘An eagle ain’t nothing more than a glorified buzzard.’ Such game-fowl lore and sentiment abound: George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were devoted rooster fighters. Union and Confederate soldiers put aside their differences on Sundays during the Civil War to pit their chickens against one another. Abraham Lincoln was given the nickname Honest Abe after he displayed impartiality as a cockfighting judge. Whatever the (dubious) historical merit of claims like these, they are meant to establish the deeply American identity of game fowl. ‘They fought them right out on the White House lawn,’ says David Thurston, president of the United Gamefowl Breeders Association, a national nonprofit dedicated to the birds’ preservation.

“Such conviction exists in stark contrast with the state of cockfighting in the country today. Taking part in the practice, which consists of strapping metal spurs to the legs of two chickens and confining them to a pit to fight each other to the death, is now illegal in all 50 states, and it has been since Louisiana was the last to outlaw cockfighting in 2007. It has been banned in all 16 U.S. territories since 2019. Federal law also makes it a crime to ‘knowingly sell, buy, possess, train, transport, deliver or receive’ any chicken across state lines for fighting purposes…”

THIS ON-LINE COMMENT nicely summarizes much of Mendocino County's rental housing stock: “And they own dozens and dozens of single family housing charging exorbitant amounts of rents and do not maintain them. Have you had the opportunity to go to many people’s rental housing lately? Mold issues, leaking roofs, failing plumbing and the landlords are still charging top dollar. Tenants are forced to pay it because the housing market is so tight and God forbid you complain to have safe, adequate and nice housing — you will be evicted. Try to follow up with legal aid to try to get any kind of tenant support for deplorable landlords skirting the tenant law… That’s a laughing matter. Rubber stamp next. No such thing as a fair trial in an eviction housing case in Mendocino County. That's how a savvy slumlord's sustainable society is maintained.”

* * *

* * *


Every January, First 5 Mendocino uses Positive Parenting Awareness Month to educate local parents—and the organizations that support them—about the practices, programs, and services that can strengthen family relationships, increase parents’ confidence, and support children’s social, emotional, and relational health and development.

Through the championship of First 5 Mendocino, the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors adopted a proclamation sponsored by Supervisor John Haschak highlighting the value of positive parenting programs. The proclamation aligned the Board’s priorities with the California State Association of Counties’ 2023 priorities in enhancing and advocating for prevention services in early childhood that advance whole child and family approaches such as the Positive Parenting Program (Triple P).

Given the enormous influence of parenting during the first five years of a child’s life when 90 percent of brain development occurs, First 5 Mendocino works in partnership with community organizations to connect parents of young children with free and low-cost resources such as classes, information, and practical support (like diapers or help getting a car seat installed).

For more than 13 years, First 5 Mendocino also has collaborated with local family resource centers, North Coast Opportunities’ Early Head Start and Head Start programs, and Mendocino County’s Family and Children Services and their Behavioral Health and Rehabilitation Services to provide Triple P (classes and other support) in English and Spanish countywide, serving approximately 1,000 parents and children of diverse backgrounds in Mendocino County every year.

First 5 Mendocino Executive Director, Townley Saye, explained, “Parenting is hard and it’s normal to feel like you don’t have all the answers. If you’re connecting with your child and supporting their needs, you’re doing great, even if it doesn’t look like your neighbor’s version of parenting. But if you’re struggling or feeling uncertain, it’s okay—actually really smart—to ask for help. Sometimes the people you know and love don’t have all the answers. That’s where we come in.”

It is well documented that children who experience safe, stable, and nurturing relationships and environments learn empathy, impulse control, anger management, communication, and problem-solving skills that help protect against interpersonal, family, and community violence. And positive parenting helps prevent, buffer, and foster healing from adverse childhood experiences such as abuse, neglect, and household challenges.

Even under the best of circumstances, parenting can be difficult, but the COVID-19 pandemic, climate-related crises, and racial injustices have exacerbated economic insecurity, mental health challenges, domestic violence, discrimination, and other trauma experienced by many families, particularly Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian, and other families of color that already experience inequities rooted in structural racism, according to the county proclamation.

This is where Triple P helps parents and caregivers by providing an evidence-based toolkit of proven strategies such as quality time, giving affection, and descriptive praise that strengthen family relationships, promote children’s development, and prevent or manage common parenting challenges.

Saye said, “Even though a huge percentage of people graduating from high school go on to become parents, we do not provide education about childhood development, so it’s no wonder that many parents feel lost—especially if they didn’t have a good role model.”

Parents who feel overwhelmed, or even those who simply want to increase their confidence, are encouraged to check out current classes offered through First 5 Mendocino’s Triple P - Positive Parenting Program.


The free, evidence-based classes and seminars offer tips on how to manage the challenges of family life, such as tantrums, bedtime battles, disobedience, and aggression. Triple P also teaches restorative wellness practices, like taking a mindful minute or prioritizing self-care to help parents shift their perspectives. One-on-one sessions, seminars, and ongoing classes are available at a variety of times in English and Spanish, so parents can choose how much support they want.

Saye explained, “We don’t always see things as they are; rather, we see them as we are—based on how we’re feeling,” Saye said. “When you’re tired, everything takes a lot of effort. When you’re hungry, everything feels urgent. We can help parents learn how to be more self-aware—to stay calm, take a deep breath, process what’s going on, and respond effectively.”

Community partners can refer clients (or others) who want some extra support with parenthood to First 5 Mendocino’s website (, which includes an updated schedule of events <>. 

Even something as simple as sleep training for an infant or toddler can improve a marriage, creating less stress at home for everyone.

“Asking for help early is important rather than waiting until a situation hits a crisis point,” Saye cautioned.

First 5 Mendocino also provides professional development services, including trauma- and resilience-informed training for community organizations, especially family resource centers. These local community centers support families with classes, playgroups, and help connecting with local resources. Here in Mendocino County, family resource centers include Raise & Shine, Nuestra Alianza de WillitsThe Arbor Youth Resource Center, and others. Visit the FRC Network of Mendocino County’s website for more information and a complete list of local FRCs.

“Just remember that you are more than enough if you love your kids and you are doing your best,” Saye said. “But it’s always okay to reach out and ask for help when you need it. Just know, you are not alone and that everyone needs help at some point.”

* * *


What you get

For $4.5 million: A 1927 Spanish-style home in Los Angeles, a four-bedroom townhouse in Manhattan Beach and a compound on more than 400 acres in Yorkville.

Yorkville / $4.5 Million

A 1970 house with four bedrooms, four bathrooms and a three-bedroom guesthouse, on a 412-acre lot

This property includes several structures — the main house, updated by the sellers; a rustic ranch house that serves as guest quarters; and a stable — with power supplied by a solar system and a generator.

It is about a half-hour drive from several wineries and tasting rooms. The shops and restaurants of Boonville are less than 15 minutes away. Driving to Mendocino takes a little more than an hour. The Bay Area cities are about two and a half hours away.

Size: 2,800 square feet

Price per square foot: $1,607

Indoors: From the street, a private road leads to the main house.

The primary entrance, off a wide wood deck, is directly into an open living-and-dining space with high ceilings, hardwood floors, tall windows overlooking the property and a large fireplace.

Behind the fireplace is an updated kitchen with a Viking range, a center island with a butcher-block counter and access to a wet bar and wine storage area. A hallway off the kitchen leads to the primary suite, which has a gas fireplace, a private deck and a bathroom with a walk-in shower. At the other end of the hall is a sunny guest room with another full bathroom. A mudroom is also in this part of the house.

The third bedroom is off the living room. It has the use of a bathroom with a claw-foot tub.

The fourth bedroom is on the lower level, with its own exterior entrance, an attached sitting room and a full bathroom near the pool, so guests can have access to indoor facilities without using the main entrance.

The guesthouse has three bedrooms and its own kitchen.

Outdoor space: The property is more than 400 acres, with a pond and a spring. Both the main house and the guesthouse are within walking distance of a saltwater swimming pool, an outdoor fireplace and a patio overlooking the treetops. Private hiking trails lead to the site’s highest point, which offers sweeping views of the area.

Taxes: $58,056 (estimated)

Contact: Anne Fashauer, North Country Real Estate, 707-512-0705;

* * *

Anne Fashauer notes:

Last week I was contacted by a journalist for the New York Times asking to feature one of my listings in their Monday real estate column. It’s not every day that something like this happens and I admit to being very excited by this.

I had to check out previous columns to make sure there wouldn’t be anything derogatory (there wasn’t) as one of my duties as a real estate broker is to not do any harm to my clients. I then had to get the approval of the sellers and of the photographer. The sellers had some privacy concerns, understandably, and these were noted by me to discuss with the reporter. The photographer was on board with no qualms.

I set up one appointment withe the journalist which she had to put off. We connected the following day and it was a fun call. Almost as good as telling an interested buyer party about the property. She not only needed info about the homes and the property, but also about the surrounding area. After the call we sent a link to the photos.

Today, Monday the 16th, the article ran. I think it is even better than I expected and you can find it here. I’m happy to have this exposure for my listing and happy to share this news with you. A bit of figurative sunshine after weeks of literal rain and storms.

* * *

Train from Crannell to Samoa, 1928

* * *

IT’S JUST RAIN (for Fuck’s Sake)

Standing in my boots

A child of 53

Transfixed by this phenomenon

The Rain

And you in the northern continents

Or you in the deep southern states will say

It’s just rain, for fuck’s sake!

Yet I in my delight will swish and splash

Through this creek and that

Watching siblings converge holding hands

As they run to their mother

The Navarro

In two miles they’ll be greeted by her

In 12 miles she’ll return them to the sea

But here and right now I am made giddy

By the gushing and gurgling of streams becoming pools, becoming falls

Filling up the ponds

And when all is back to the way it was

The Drought

I will be standing in a dry bed again

A middle-aged adult

Wondering if, how much, and when

— Joanna Rasmussen

* * *

BILL KIMBERLIN: Mrs. Berry's place was mentioned in the diary of Mrs. Jack London in their 1906 visit to Boonville. This was when it was owned by the Berry family. (Colorized photo.)

Boonville Hotel, 1906

Claudia Clow: The boy on the left is my grandfather, Glenn McAbee, to his right is his father, Sam, McAbee, and his grandfather, John McAbee, and an his Uncle.

Tanya Dockery: The people in this picture are my great great grandfather and his sons and grandsons. The McAbees.

Jeff Burroughs: The hotel ledger with Jack London's signature from when they checked in is on display at the Little Red Schoolhouse Museum in Boonville.

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Arms, Castillo, French

DANIEL ARMS, Susanville/Willits. Domestic battery, suspended license, no registration, failure to appear.

VERONICA CASTILLO, Willits. Protective order violation, probation revocation.

JADE FRENCH, Ukiah. Protective order violation.

Johnson, Lamberson, Langley, Lundy

DAVID JOHNSON SR., Ukiah. Controlled substance, parole violation.

ANDREW LAMBERSON JR., Trinidad/Ukiah. Controlled substance for sale.

MICHAEL LANGLEY, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

JADEN LUNDY, Fort Bragg. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, probation revocation.

Martinez, Moore, Rodriguez, Teller


NATHAN MOORE, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.

ALEANDRIA RODRIGUEZ, Fort Bragg. Embezzlement by employee (over $400), controlled subsance-narcotics for sale.

DAVID TELLER, Arcata/Ukiah. DUI-alcohol&drugs.

* * *



I notice that the water released from lake Sonoma has been increased from 77 cubic feet per second to 93 cfs. This is a shame. Water is our most valuable resource in Sonoma County. The water supply pool at Lake Sonoma is at 74% capacity, as of Jan. 12.

The Press Democrat editorial board loves to lecture the citizens of Sonoma County about water use and the severity of drought, yet apartment buildings are being built at a rate never seen in this country. If we are to supply these new residents with water, we must stop the gross mismanagement of water releases at Lake Sonoma.

If the Press Democrat continues to press the drought narrative they should look into the management of this reservoir.

John Kinworthy

Santa Rosa

* * *

Little River School, Humboldt, 1932

* * *


by Richard Luthy

After the driest three-year period on record in state history, Pacific storms, known as atmospheric rivers, just deluged California cities. But as much as we needed this water, a large fraction of it was lost by runoff to the ocean.

This largely untapped resource can only be captured and used for water supply by reimagining how we deal with stormwater. This won’t be easy because we have more than 100 years of experience with treating urban runoff as flood control and property protection problems rather than a water supply opportunity. Reenvisioning how we use stormwater is important for California and relevant to other water-scarce places. 

Climate appears to be changing the state’s annual rainfall pattern with longer and more severe droughts punctuated by intense wet years. Since 2000 we’ve experienced three, multiyear droughts with 2022 being the driest January-March in San Francisco since the Gold Rush.

Historically, California has dealt with drought and urban water needs by importing water from afar, overdrafting groundwater, and depleting rivers and streams. Large-scale water infrastructure to store and move water around the state began early in the 20th century, which brought water from the Sierra Nevada and the Colorado River to the major metropolitan areas. The scale and engineering of this infrastructure became the stuff of legends and Hollywood movies. But now there’s no more water to import, and supplies from the Colorado River are in peril due to prolonged drought since 2000. 

Unsustainable pumping of groundwater helped the state deal with droughts in the 20th century, but those days are over with new groundwater management regulations. The state is also finally beginning to accept that dewatering rivers and decimating migrating fish populations must stop. 

For the Bay Area, this means we’ll have even less imported water to feed our aqueducts as more of the spring runoff from the Sierra Nevada will remain in the rivers to support fish. 

All this points to the need for new ways of supplying urban water, and for greater reliability and security. Simply stated, we need to reduce dependence on imported water and do a better job with the water we have. We can diversify our water supply through a combination of conservation, desalination, water reuse and stormwater capture. 

California cities were engineered to convey stormwater quickly to the ocean by channelizing rivers and streams with concrete-lined straight cuts and steep riverbanks. But, today, stormwater rushing to the ocean is increasingly seen by the public and politicians as a valuable resource that should be used and not discarded. In response, the state set an ambitious goal to increase stormwater use to 1 million acre-feet by 2030, equivalent to double the water Los Angeles uses annually. In the urbanized Bay Area, the potential is about 100,000 acre-feet per year on average, enough to supply about 150,000 households for a year.

Underground aquifers offer the best opportunity for new storagebecause they can hold large volumes of water without the dams and sitting obstacles presented by above-ground reservoirs. Urban stormwater can be infiltrated to recharge aquifers in ways that are protective of groundwater. Urban stormwater capture and recharge are just beginning to catch on as a source of water supply, but challenges remain in working with the seasonality of precipitation, regional geology and contaminants.

Regional geography influences how stormwater can be captured and stored. Many cities in the Bay Area are situated on relatively impervious clay soil. Here, stormwater use would require infrastructure for collecting and pumping to locations that are more favorable for recharge.

Los Angeles, meanwhile, has more favorable geology for infiltration, and stormwater recharge projects are being developed in the San Fernando Valley. 

Stormwater picks up contaminants from landscapes, roads, and buildings. Of particular concern are those contaminants that are widely used, persistent and water soluble — such as pesticides. Treatment of captured stormwater, however, can ensure safe potable use and prevent contaminants from polluting nearby water bodies. To make this a reality, more stormwater quality surveys are needed to identify land-pollutant combinations that could pose a risk to groundwater quality and to assess innovative designs that could mitigate those risks. Field projects are also needed to demonstrate best practices to enhance infiltration capacity and protect water quality.

Stormwater capture for water supply is cost-effective relative to other new sources. In the Bay Area, an estimate of treatment and pumping to recharge basins might cost between $1,200 to $1,700 per acre-foot, depending on treatment, which compares favorably with the wholesale price of water from the Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency of $2,200 per acre-foot. A coalition in Southern California has already shown that larger-scale and retrofit projects are more cost-efficient. 

Yet while the cost of capturing this relatively untapped source of new water can be relatively inexpensive, cities lack experience with basin-wide urban runoff capture, treatment and recharge. An important step forward in overcoming this limitation is to design and evaluate demonstration projects that enhance water supply in ways that are protective of groundwater, provide flood protection, and create urban habitat and green space. Demonstration projects, supported by research efforts and regional collaborations, will help cities confidently invest in stormwater capture as part of a diversified, drought-proof water supply.

(SF Chronicle)

* * *

SAKO IN NEW YORK (Suitable for framing)

* * *


Much Love

Warmest spiritual greetings, Following nine months of survival at the Building Bridges homeless shelter, and eating free of charge at the Plowshares dining room, and living on $800 monthly social security benefits, after walking the whole central Ukiah, California grid, I completely gave up! Entered Applebee's and took a seat at the bar, enjoying 22 oz. glasses of Eel River IPA along with a shot of Hennessy cognac on the rocks. Participated in a very lively social scene while we all watched the Dallas-Tampa Bay football game. Ordered a steak dinner cooked medium rare, and finally the blondie ala mode dessert. Left a tip, and after phoning the shelter to report that I would be back slightly after the 8PM curfew time, dropped by a convenience store for a mint It's It ice cream bar. Awoke the next morning feeling very satisfied, and glad to have taken an alka seltzer the night before to ward off any after effects. Spent Tuesday in the shelter, chatting with everybody else, and then slept. Awoke Wednesday morning with the mind reciting Catholic prayers. Morning ablutions were followed by a trip to Plowshares. Dropped by the co-op for a matcha latte. Am presently on computer #1 at the Ukiah Public Library tap tap tapping away.

I want everyone to understand that I have done the best that I could in this lifetime on the planet earth. 50 years of frontline radical environmental and peace&justice activism, plus writing all about it, while cultivating a spiritual life encompassing several major world religions, has been healthy. I am satisfied!

At this time, I am leaving the rest of it up to a higher power. I have no idea what is going to happen next. The shelter is understaffed and operating minimally. There is a rumour that it could close. Food stamp benefits will be cut back after next month because the federal money has run out. Fortunately, my physical and mental health is strong. Maybe it's the occasional beer and socializing that has made the difference. Thank you very much for your friendship over many years. Whatever your spiritual orientation is, I wish you the very best always.

Much love,

Craig Louis Stehr


Telephone Messages: (707) 234-3270

Share Here:

* * *

* * *

MEXICO, OH, OH MEXICO, So Far from God so Close to the USA

by Jonah Raskin

It's not yet my first full day in Guanajuato, a small provincial city in Mexico, but I've already had a lengthy conversation about violence and drugs, which pervade the society and spill across the border. What else is there to talk about here? Mexican writers and Mexican food, but drugs and violence are near the top of the list of topics for gringos to explore while they sip their morning coffee in the warm sun. I've been here before. I might be here again. It feels good to get outside the porous borders of the USA. In Guanajuato I don't see any of the bumper stickers I saw in Florida during the week I was there as a tourist. No "Make America Great Again" and no "Santos: He Won't Back Down." My host has lived in Mexico for two decades. I don't think he'll return to Northern California where he worked as a teacher. His dollars go further here than they would in El Norte. The ratio of dollars to pesos brings North Americans here in droves. 

This morning while strolling near the center of the city it was easy to pick out the gringos from the locals. There's something about the way gringos walk and the way they move their bodies along with their inimical facial expressions. I'm not sure I could describe what I saw. Maybe it has something to do with entitlement. North Americans look like they are entitled to everything. They assume entitlement is their birthright. Not all of them, but many of them and especially when they're in Mexico and if they're middle class tourists. 

My walking companion was a fellow who wouldn't call himself a tourist, not even if he was paid in dollars. He's been here so often that he knows his way around the narrow streets that are packed with pedestrians and shoppers. We sipped coffee and talked and watched mothers who gathered across the street and waited for their children to be dismissed from school for the day. It might have been in San Francisco where I have seen similar sights. 

My walking companion and I talked about colonialism, economic and cultural, in Mexico, and wondered if the country had been thoroughly colonized or not. Coca Cola signs are ubiquitous, along with other brand names from El Norte, but Mexico also seems to be a place that absorbs all kinds of cultures from around the world and integrates them. Like the Virgin of Guadalupe, who has dark skin and looks like she might be an Indian. If you want to conquer a place it helps to take on some of the identity of the indigenous without being swallowed by them. Bakers here make croissants that look and taste like croissants from Paris, but sometimes they're called "cuernos" (horns). 

I did not see any images of the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, known as AMLO. In Morocco I saw photos of the king and in India photos of Modi, the prime minister. There's a spirit of independence here. Guanajuato is one of the freest and most labyrinth-like municipalities in all Mexico. Octavio Paz titled his book about Mexico, The Labyrinth of Solitude. One could easily get lost in Guanajuato. Nothing here is on a grid. Labyrinth-like tunnels borrow under the surface of the city and vehicles travel on underground passageways carved out centuries ago by the Spanish to plunder the rich veins of silver. 

In the Mercado, the giant marketplace, my companion sat and ate a carnitas bolillo, which was prepared right in front of him. At a stand nearby I bought several different kinds of cheeses and a packet of tortillas, and at yet another stand a handful of bananas. I won't starve here. And I won't forget that Porfirio Díaz, the Mexican president/dictator, was fond of saying that "Poor Mexico was so far from God and so close to the USA." It was true when he said it more than one hundred years ago and it's true today, as true as any other grandiose statement.

* * *

Elizabeth Mahon


From 1943 through 1954, when the All-American Girls Base Ball League operated in the Midwest, baseball was regarded as part of the male world. Females, if they played ball, usually played fast-pitch softball — a sport that became popular during the Great Depression of the 1930s. But Elizabeth Mahon (pronounced Muh-AN), who grew up playing ball with her brothers in Greenville, South Carolina, proved herself to be a very good baseball player in the All-American League, as most players and fans called the girls’ league.

* * *

* * *


by Eric Branch

As the Cowboys’ lead grew Monday night in their wild-card romp over the Buccaneers, so did demand on the secondary ticket market for their next playoff game.

That’s because a Dallas victory would set up a game between marquee franchises that have combined for some of the most indelible moments in NFL playoff history.

Not surprisingly, a San Francisco 49ers’ postseason game against the Cowboys moves the needle.

“We’ve seen a lot of demand and it started probably around that early third quarter when (the Cowboys) were up 24-0,” said StubHub spokesman Adam Budelli. “That’s when we started to see a lot more interest in this game. And sales have certainly exploded since then.”

Want to sit in one of the 68,500 red seats at Levi’s Stadium on Sunday? It will take plenty of green for those who have yet to secure a ticket.

Since the Cowboys set up the divisional-round game against the 49ers by beating Tampa Bay 31-14 on Monday night, it has become StubHub’s best-selling of the NFL’s four playoff games this weekend. It is outselling the second-most popular game, Giants at Eagles, by about 20%.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the get-in price (the cost of a single standing-room-only ticket) was about $450. A single ticket in the 400 Level, the upper reaches of the stadium, was about $500. The most expensive ticket, a field-level seat in Row 1 behind the visitors’ sideline, was $3,596.

That makes it a more expensive ticket than the 49ers’ only other divisional-round game at Levi’s against the Vikings in January 2020. And it costs more than their NFC Championship Game against the Packers that same season.

Still, Budelli said it’s not close to approaching historic levels.

“I wouldn’t say in totality that the pricing is that outrageous,” he said.

The 49ers sold most of their tickets to Sunday’s game to season-ticket holders and the rest were mostly sold out before their wild-card win against the Seahawks on Saturday. At the time the divisional game sold out, the lowest price was between $350 to $400, according to 49ers corporate communications director Jacob Fill.

The 49ers started selling playoff tickets for all rounds after they clinched the NFC West title Dec. 15 and were guaranteed at least one home playoff game. Fans could buy tickets for all rounds in advance and be refunded if the game did not take place. Season-ticket holders were able to purchase tickets for the divisional round for between $165 to $250, depending on the seat location.

There were about 6,700 tickets for sale on StubHub on Tuesday afternoon.

“There are still opportunities for fans,” Budelli said, “if they are willing and able to pay the price.”


* * *

* * *


Ukraine's interior minister is among at least 14 people killed after a helicopter crashed in a Kyiv suburb Wednesday, officials said. President Volodymyr Zelensky called the crash a “tragedy” and authorities have launched an investigation.

Zelensky urged Western leaders to make faster decisions to counter Russia’s war and support Kyiv with heavy weaponry, saying in virtual remarks at the World Economic Forum in Davos that "the tyranny is outpacing the democracy.”

The US is expected to announce one of its largest military aid packages for Ukraine in coming days, according to officials. Kyiv has been pleading for modern tanks, a request the US is not yet willing to grant, despite the UK and Poland saying they will.

* * *

Wife and Child of Sub-Marginal Farmer, Pennington County, South Dakota (May 1936) by Arthur Rothstein

* * *

OUR CIVILIZATION is rife with problems despite its great wealth because our civilization has prioritized generating wealth over solving problems. It doesn't make anyone rich to address the root causes of crime, sickness, war, poverty or ecocide, so those problems go unaddressed.

In a civilization which prioritizes the generation of wealth over the solving of problems, the option which generates wealth will always win out over the option which solves the problem. War profiteers, prison profiteers, big pharma, ecocidal industrialists — they all know this.

Under the current status quo, military aggression will always win out over peace whenever military aggression is more profitable. Keeping people sick to provide ongoing treatment will always win out over curing or preventing sickness wherever doing so is more profitable. Keeping a technological innovation secret until it can be maximally profited from will always win out over making it public and sharing the information for the advancement of science and the common good. Workers will be exploited to the furthest extent possible to maximize profit.

Old growth forests and whale populations were wiped out because leaving them alone generated no profit. Insect populations are plummeting because industrial pesticides are profitable and wild habitats are not. Our oceans are choking on plastic because it's profitable not to prevent this from happening.

Nobody's going to become a billionaire by ending homelessness or making sure the elderly and the handicapped get everything they need. Nobody's going to become a billionaire by making sure mothers get everything they need to raise physically and psychologically healthy children.

A status quo system wherein large-scale human behavior is driven by profit-seeking cannot and will not ever have any good answers for problems like poverty, crime, sickness, war, ecocide, injustice and exploitation, because solving those problems will never be profitable. When solving those problems is never profitable, but causing or exacerbating them frequently is, those problems will necessarily live on. Not until this dynamic is reversed can we be free of them.

Not until we dispense with status quo systems which ensure large-scale human behavior is driven by profit will we be able to move toward a healthy and harmonious world. Until then we will remain plagued by serious problems, and by false promises that our current systems can solve them.

— Caitlin Johnstone

* * *


    • Harvey Reading January 19, 2023

      Aint wishful thinking grand… Too bad you have to scour the trash.

      • Mike J January 19, 2023

        Hi Brian. There are two main skeptic points made here that are based on incorrect assumptions:
        1) it isn’t possible to get here due to the inability (presumed) to get around that pesky speed limit of light. In fact, the Alcubierre equation of 1994 describes a process that is completely compatable to general and special relativity findings. Decades later, scientists have significantly reduced what the energy requirement for localized warping would be. The craft would be in an insulated bubble and would not undergo distorting effects like a craft approaching the speed of light. Space in front of the craft is contracted and expanded in the back. This simply shortens the distance! Today, there are scientists making progress on this front with recent developments in the news. Louis Bedrock recently here asserted this process isn’t even a hypothesis. Wrong!

        2) it’s all based on stories. Wrong! Physical traces, signature readings, photos, and medical evidence all have frequently fleshed out or supported anecdotes.

        • Brian Wood January 19, 2023

          Complete science fiction. First sentence in your wikipedia entry says it is a speculative warp drive idea. Interesting in the abstract but hardly settled science.

          • Mike J January 19, 2023

            Wrong. Edit: I thought I copied only a portion, the newsworthy developments at bottom about experiments showing it’s more plausible re energy requirements
            From Scientific American, July 2021:
            Scientific American Logo
            Star Trek’s Warp Drive Leads to New Physics
            Researchers are taking a closer look at this science-fiction staple—and bringing the idea a little closer to reality

            By Robert Gast, Spektrum on July 13, 2021
            Star Trek’s Warp Drive Leads to New Physics
            Warp one, engage! Credit: Getty Images
            For Erik Lentz, it all started with Star Trek. Every few episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Captain Jean-Luc Picard would raise his hand and order, “Warp one, engage!” Then stars became dashes, and light-years flashed by at impossible speed. And Lentz, still in elementary school, wondered whether warp drive might also work in real life.

            “At some point, I realized that the technology didn’t exist,” Lentz says. He studied physics at the University of Washington, wrote his Ph.D. dissertation on dark matter and generally became far too busy to be concerned with science fiction. But then, at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, Lentz found himself alone in Göttingen, Germany, where he was doing postdoctoral work. He suddenly had plenty of free time on his hands—and childhood fancies in his head.

            Lentz read everything he could find on warp drives in the scientific literature, which was not very much. Then he began to think about it for himself. After a few weeks, something occurred to him that everyone else seemed to have overlooked. Lentz put his idea on paper and discussed it with more experienced colleagues. A year later it was published in a physics journal.

            It quickly became clear that Lentz was not the only person dreaming about warp drives. Media outlets all over the world picked up the story, and a dozen journalists asked for interviews. A discussion on the online forum Reddit attracted 2,700 comments and 33,000 likes. One Internet user wrote, “Anyone else feel like they were born 300 years too soon?”

            There is no doubt that the universe is still far too vast for humans to traverse. It takes more than four years for a beam of light to reach Earth’s nearest star Proxima Centauri. Even with the best available propulsion systems, it would take tens of thousands of years for a human to get there. One can always dream about establishing colonies in other star systems, but it is not a journey anyone is likely to undertake.

            But perhaps one day it might be possible to reduce the travel time. There are many ideas about how to do that, from laser-accelerated solar sails to nuclear propulsion. But even with the aid of these technologies, you would not get too far in a human lifetime. The galaxy really is open only to those who travel as fast as light—or faster.

            NASA artist’s 1998 rendition of warp drive travel. The ring around the spacecraft generates a negative-energy field. From today’s perspective, the negative-energy field would no longer be necessary. Credit: NASA; Digital art by Les Bossinas (Cortez III Service Corp)
            For that very reason, imaginative physicists have long been pondering the ultimate propulsion system: a bubble in space and time in which a spaceship could dash from sun to sun, just like the USS Enterprise did. This is research at the fringe of science: not necessarily wrong but spiced with a large pinch of optimism.

            The fact that scientists are dealing with the idea at all today is thanks to a 1994 paper by Mexican theoretical physicist Miguel Alcubierre. At the time, Alcubierre was not just a passionate Star Trek devotee. In his doctoral thesis at the University of Wales College Cardiff (now Cardiff University), Alcubierre also worked on the theory of relativity. Strictly speaking, the theory states that nothing can travel faster than light. But by applying a little creativity, Alcubierre identified an apparent loophole.

            For physicists, Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity consists of two parts: The “special” theory of relativity, which dates from 1905, deals with the uniform motion of fast-as-light objects. Ten years later Einstein generalized these ideas for accelerating bodies. According to “general” relativity, the three spatial dimensions we are familiar with (up-down, left-right, front-back) are inseparable from time. Every mass deforms this spacetime.

            According to Albert Einstein’s epic discovery, we live in four-dimensional “spacetime.” Spacetime is not static. Like a tablecloth, it is deformed by massive objects. Everything that moves across the tablecloth (or through spacetime) can accelerate only up to the speed limit set by light. The tablecloth itself, on the other hand, can be deformed at any speed, as the universe itself shows in some situations.

            At the instant of the big bang, for example, the original spacetime structure presumably expanded for a split second and did so much faster than any ray of light could travel. Even today, the expansion continues to drive extremely distant galaxies away at speeds faster than light, which means their light can no longer reach us.

            Based on his discovery, Alcubierre surmised that it would only be a small step to a warp drive. If spacetime were contracted in front of a spaceship and expanded behind it to compensate, it would be possible to travel to one’s destination at a speed faster than light. The ship would remain encapsulated in a bubble, and the crew would not sense the magnitude of the interstellar journey. In a 2017 lecture, Alcubierre compared it to being on a passenger conveyor belt at the airport: “You can imagine that the floor behind you is being created out of nothing and in front of you it is being destroyed, so you move along.”

            But formulating this idea in the language of general relativity immediately gives rise to major practical problems. First, to deform spacetime so radically, you would need to cram a huge mass into a bubble bounded by a wall thinner than an atomic nucleus. Then you would need two forms of matter to maintain the bubble. The gravity of ordinary mass would cause the space at the front of the bubble to contract, moving the whole structure forward. But at the same time, the space at the back of the bubble would need to expand like rising bread dough. To make that expansion happen, according to Alcubierre, you would need some form of negative energy radiating a kind of antigravity.

            For most physicists, that was the end of the thought experiment. Energy—which according to Einstein’s formula E = mc2 is equivalent to unconstrained mass—seems like it must, by definition, be positive. But according to quantum theory, it can indeed have a negative value. This seems to occur only in rare special cases, however—on a tiny scale. In the so-called Casimir effect, for example, the quantities involved are so minuscule that any technological application seems absurd.

            Alcubierre, now a professor of physics at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, concedes this point. In terms of a potential technology, warp drives “are greatly lacking,” he and one of his colleagues wrote in a recent preprint paper. He has now turned his attention to known phenomena, such as black holes. The warp drive concept, however, retains its fascination, especially for Trekkies—and for a few gravitational physicists, who occasionally publish variations on the idea.

            Some of these papers have shown how to reduce the bubble’s mass requirements so that the total mass needed to deform spacetime would be less than that of our sun. But no one was able to get around the problem of negative energy—until Lentz took it up during the lockdown in Göttingen. In his enforced isolation, Lentz found a way to construct a warp bubble using only positive energy. In so doing, he may have overcome the greatest objection to warp drives.

            What made it possible was a special feature of the geometry of spacetime that Lentz discovered buried in the general theory of relativity—more precisely, in Einstein’s field equations. These equations can calculate how a particular distribution of matter and energy deforms spacetime. Researchers can also use them, as Alcubierre did, to determine the mass and energy needed to produce a specific curvature of space.

            Dealing with a dynamic, four-dimensional structure like spacetime is extremely complicated, however. Writing out Einstein’s formulas in full produces a jumble of nested differential equations with thousands of terms. Depending on the assumptions you make about a particular physical situation, you only take some of those terms into account. For theorists, it is an almost limitless playground.

            Principle of the Alcubierre drive: Spacetime contracts at the front of the bubble (right), corresponding to a warp in spacetime. Behind the bubble (left), new space is created out of nothing, which is equivalent to stretching spacetime. Credit: AllenMcC Wikimedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)
            Lentz specifically examined the assumptions leading to the negative energy requirements in Alcubierre’s work. Like his colleague, Lentz began by analyzing spacetime, modeling the multidimensional substance as a stack of very thin layers. He found that Alcubierre had only considered comparatively simple “linear” relationships between the equations for shifting one layer onto the next. At this point, choosing more complex “hyperbolic” relations, which typically express rapidly changing quantities, results in a different warp bubble than the one obtained by Alcubierre. It still requires enormous amounts of mass and energy but, according to Lentz’s calculations, only positive amounts. “I was very surprised that no one had tried this before me,” Lentz says.

            Lentz’s bubble looks different from the one Alcubierre worked out in 1994. It consists of diamond-shaped regions of altered spacetime that resemble a flock of birds. Creating such a spacetime geometry in reality would involve a complicated layering of rings and disks, not made of solid material but of an extremely dense fluid of charged particles, similar to the substance found in the interior of neutron stars, Lentz says.

            That means near-light-speed travel is still very, very far away from applied technology. But now that no exotic negative energy densities are needed—at least according to Lentz’s latest work—the theoretical games are within the realm of established physics. Alcubierre describes Lentz’s paper as a “very important development.” Francisco Lobo, a researcher at the University of Lisbon and a colleague of Alcubierre’s, who has published a textbook on warp drives, cannot find any obvious errors either. “If correct, this has the potential of opening up new interest and novel avenues of research in warp drive physics,” he says.

            Lentz’s idea has even aroused interest among researchers outside the small community of warp drive enthusiasts, including Lavinia Heisenberg, a professor of cosmology at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich. Heisenberg and her student Shaun Fell found Lentz’s paper so exciting that they built on it by designing their own positive-energy warp bubbles that would require as little as a thousandth of the mass of our sun.

            “The whole thing is much less mysterious than most people assume,” says Alexey Bobrick, an astrophysicist at Lund University in Sweden. Collaborating with New York City–based entrepreneur Gianni Martire, Bobrick came up with some promising solutions to Einstein’s field equations in 2020. According to Bobrick, all that is needed for a warp bubble is an appropriately shaped shell made of dense material that bends spacetime in its immediate vicinity while the universe through which the bubble moves and the space within the shell remain comparatively undisturbed.

        • Louis Bedrock January 21, 2023

          …there are no known methods to create such a warp bubble in a region of space that would not already contain one. …, assuming there was a way to create such a bubble, there is not yet any known way of leaving once inside it. As a result, the Alcubierre drive (or metric) remains in the category of theory at this time.

  1. Marco McClean January 19, 2023

    Re: KZYX

    Alicia Bales announces her new project:


    [deedle-deedle music intro cont. in background]

    Hello! This is Alicia bales, welcoming you to my new podcast, Unmanageable with Alicia Bales, News From the Unruly People and Places of Mendocino County, California. I’m looking forward to continuing the same kind of urgent in-depth and local coverage that I did on KZYX.

    [music out]

    But first I really want to thank you for the incredible outpouring of support over the last week. It’s impossible to express how much it means to me. To those of you who’ve taken the time to leave messages, email, text, post, and call into on air shows, I’m humbled by your faith in me. At some point I /will/ talk in detail about my perspective about what has happened at KZYX. I think my experience illustrates a wider problem with the nonprofit structure and how it often fails to protect staff members who do essential work for our communities. But for now I’m still pretty stunned, as you can imagine, and trying to get my legs under me and figure out my next steps. Your outspoken support has meant everything. Thank you.

    I’m very proud of my time at KZYX and I’m taking away an invaluable lesson that I wanted to share with you. My work is KZYX’s program director was guided by the core values of inclusiveness, transparency, equity and community engagement. All of my efforts at the station from emergency announcements during fires, evidence based and interactive pandemic programming, recruiting and supporting voices from all parts of our community, supporting and expanding local news, all of it was based on these principles. My purpose was to inform and empower our magnificent community and to create a sense of place and belonging here in Mendocino County. We have a rich and a /wild/ history. We’ve been through a lot and our stories are important. My work reflects my belief that our collective voices matter. When we are connected with each other and understand the workings of our local power structures, we have the power to create a meaningful and just future together.

    Putting these values into practice at KZYX. I learned that they actually /work/ –like they /work/ in a practical way you heard and felt the difference and for that I’m so gratified. I hope KZYX will reflect on what’s been accomplished, realize that transparency, inclusiveness and /meaningful engagement/ with the community are essential to the success of the station and carry on with this vision in the years to come.

    Moving forward into the future I’d like to build on the success and the lessons that I learned at KZYX and continue supporting our community. We have serious challenges ahead. But here in Mendocino County there are legions of innovative, outspoken, inspiring visionaries working to create solutions, practice new forms of governance and land management, address the atrocities of our past and make sure all of us are included in the decisions that affect us. It’s been my privilege to support and amplify your voices and that’s what I hope to continue doing in the years to come.

    [deedle-deedle music resumes]

    Unmanageable with Alicia Bales, News From the Unruly People and Places of Mendocino County, California, and you can subscribe through Spotify and soon everywhere else where you get your podcasts. The first episode will drop this weekend. It’s a report of the victory by a dedicated group of people led by local indigenous activists to stop PG&E from cutting down a tree that has an /occupied eagle’s nest/. The group held vigil for weeks outside in the rain during the bomb cyclone and relentless atmospheric rivers we’ve just lived through to save the home of a pair of eagles from senseless destruction by PG&E. I’m excited to bring you their voices and share this and /so/ many more stories with you of our unruly neighbors and irrepressible landscapes. Please join me, subscribe and stay tuned. You can email me at with comments, questions and suggestions for future episodes. I love you all, thank you so much for your support and trust.

    For the Unmanageable podcast. I’m Alicia Bales. Thanks for listening.

    [music up and out]

  2. michael turner January 19, 2023

    Concerning Jeff Burroughs complaints about the AVC Health Center. Kudos to Mark Apfel. With his departure local patients are now experiencing what’s been going on around the country for the last decade. And it’s not good.
    Here’s what’s going on behind the scenes.
    1) Triage by the least competent. This has long been a problem in medicine: untrained people answering phones and prioritizing patient care. There used to be some checks, when I first came to Ukiah my office had a receptionist who had worked there 20 years. She knew the patients and had the ear of all the doctors.. Nowadays receptionists are replaceable parts, underpaid and uninterested.
    2) Everybody is too busy. Doing what you ask? Entering data into the computer. The demands of the electronic medical record tyrannize the workday. Doctors and nurses are working nonstop, entering endless amounts of data. It’s a hermetic world, quite apart from direct communication with patients on the phone or even walking into the office.. Direct patient contact is actually an interruption of their workday.
    It all reminds me of something an older colleague said to me in the early days of managed care: “Gosh, under this new paradigm, the best patients are those that never come in at all!”

    Michael Turner MD, happily retired.

  3. Marmon January 19, 2023


    2023 is going to be a good year for me, that bogus Work Place Violence Restraining Order the County put on me in 2012 to 2017 will come off of my record this year. The maximum length of a restraining order to stay on your record in California is five years. The County (Angelo, Cryer and Lowery) were awarded the judgement based on FEAR only, FALSE EVIDENCE APPEARING REAL

    I would like to get a job at Home Depot or someplace like that, even a host job at Walmart would be okay.


    • Chuck Dunbar January 19, 2023

      That’s good, James. And good that the law allows for such mercy, and a new start. You deserve that, as do many others. I hope you find a job that’s a good fit for you. You have a lot of energy and can give something back to the world in the right place. Let us know how it goes.

  4. Marmon January 19, 2023

    R.I.P. DAVID

    That’s just the way it is.

    Phil Collins and David Crosby


  5. Jeff Burroughs January 20, 2023

    Not to be the complainer dejour but I have suffered another incident with this fine health care system we have in our State, County, Valley… Wife needs surgery, she is suffering terribly, poisoned from her gahl bladder. 2 months have past since her ER visits and doctors appointments and today she finally got to see the surgeon who said “We will call you next week to schedule you for surgery.” My wife’s immune system is so overburdened from waiting that she has tremors, nausea and vomiting, stolen lympnodes and dizziness and crippling fatigue. If she has to wait another month I fear she won’t make it. I am so desperate and I feel so helpless I am my wits end. All I want is to see her taken care of but she is being treated horribly. I just can’t believe how bad health care is in America.

    • George Hollister January 21, 2023

      This makes American medicine sound like Canadian medicine, ” Here are some meds, and get in line and wait. We will call when there is a space.” Be thankful, British medicine is even worse.

      • Bruce Anderson January 21, 2023

        On the off chance you’re taking in new data, George, both Canadian and British national health services are assumed in both countries as part of their qualities of life, just as single payer here would be if the Democrats stood for anything beyond their own re-elections. Do your research, my boy.

        • George Hollister January 21, 2023

          My data set is one, my own experience. My sister-in-law’s mother in Canada had exactly the same thing happen to her as is described by Jeff Burroughs. Unfortunately for her, and her daughter, she passed away in great pain after waiting for a month +, the day before there was an opening. I also saw the experience my stepmother, and father had in Canada. For treatment, the US was often their best option. The WSJ had an article about problems with the English healthcare system, a subject you won’t see in the NYT, or AVA.

          The lesson here is don’t assume better outcomes with a government run system. To do so is a matter of faith.

          • Chuck Dunbar January 21, 2023

            George, you say this: “The WSJ had an article about problems with the English healthcare system, a subject you won’t see in the NYT, or AVA.”

            But you are not correct, as noted below in just one example:

            New York Times, 1/27/22:

            ‘I Feel Really Hopeless’: In U.K., Millions See Non-Covid Health Care Delayed

            “The free health care system was known for delays, caused in part by whittled-down funding. But Covid made waits for transplants, cancer treatments and other essential care even longer…”

            • George Hollister January 21, 2023

              I stand corrected. In Canada when Covid struck, they were dependent on China for a vaccine, which did not come. Of course that vaccine didn’t work anyway. Another thing I have noted is people in Canada don’t complain about the shortcomings of their system, like we do ours. They just accept it, or go to Bellingham for treatment. And yes, Canada has a constant battle with funding constraints, as does England.

              Canada has been plagued with shortages of doctors, more so for specialists. Many of their doctors would come to the USA for more money. Now we see acute healthcare provider shortages here in the USA. That is likely why Jeff’s suffering wife is in line.

              • Lazarus January 21, 2023

                I was telling an MD I know about an 85 year old guy with Stage 4 cancer. He was being treated with immune therapy.
                The doctor said if he were in Canada, he would be made comfortable, but nothing more.
                The treatment this fellow was given gave him an additional three years of quality life.
                Dealer’s choice I suppose.

                • George Hollister January 21, 2023

                  Check out this website:


                  When my father, a Canadian citizen, needed a new battery for his pacemaker, he was too old to get one in Canada. He came to the US, at a VA in Louisiana and got one, thanks to my MD sister. Cancer is also less aggressively treated in Canada, and lower survival rates there, compared to the US, demonstrate the results.

                  • Harvey Reading January 22, 2023

                    That sounds like a different tale of woe than the one you peddled here a few years back…prove me wrong.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *