Press "Enter" to skip to content

Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Rain | Atmospheric River | Hendy Flooded | Roof Collapse | Bragg Housing | Rivers Merge | Rental Space | Roundabouts | Bridge Widening | 101 Sliding | Cars Out | Piano Concert | Issue Spotting | Raindrops | Weed Exit | Mendocino 1868 | Cannabiz | Planning Agenda | Overflow | Ed Notes | Bank Crutches | Predator Night | Variety Show | Emotional Incident | Name Changing | Yesterday's Catch | Kym's Kommunity | Die Laughing | We Saw | Spec's | Raider Garoppolo | Oscars Awards | PG&E Robbery | Capitalism Collapse | Taxpayers Pay | Nancy Green | Melville Rewrite | Oops | USS Fallujah | Top Employee | Money Trouble | Samurai Zelensky | Ukraine | Killing Budget | More War | UFO

* * *

MODERATE TO LOCALLY HEAVY RAIN as well as strong gusty winds will occur across Northwest California today. Cool dry weather is then expected Wednesday through Friday, followed by additional periods of rain this weekend through early next week. (NWS)

YESTERDAY'S RAINFALL (past 24 hours): Yorkville 1.40" - Leggett 1.24" - Mendocino 1.02" - Laytonville 0.99" - Willits 0.78" - Covelo 0.70" - Hopland 0.67" - Ukiah 0.35"

* * *

STEPHEN DUNLAP: This is an “atmospheric river.” 

Most media sources don't know what they are reporting on. It is basically when the jet stream goes flat from west to east and taps abundant tropical moisture.

* * *


Invasive species removal canceled for this Saturday (3/18)

We are sad to report that the Day use in Hendy Woods State Park is currently closed due to flooding and with more rain in the forecast we must cancel the invasive species removal set for this Saturday, March 18th. Fingers crossed for the next one - Saturday April 22nd - we will keep you posted! Thank you for your continued support!

Anica Williams,

* * *

DISASTER RECOVERY for Maia Leon Guererro & JR and Max Lane

Maia, JR & and their 4 year old son Max are getting ready for Baby Mel’s birth next month when the 4+ feet of snow that fell on Spy Rock last week collapsed the roof on their house, leaving it unsafe & uninhabitable. It is unsalvagable and will need to be completely re built. They were able to salvage a few things and have an RV that they can move onto the property for temporary housing, but they are in need of our help to meet these unexpected expenses and get back on their feet. The extreme weather also affected their ability to work, as they were first snowed out & then snowed in, so they lost some badly needed income as well as Maia being limited on how much longer she is able to work with Baby Mel arriving soon. Thankfully they are safe & sound and able to stay with family & friends while they work on getting some temporary housing on the property before the new baby is born. She is due on April 15th. As many of you know, Maia & JR are always there to help family & friends in need, now it’s our turn to help them.

* * *

PETER LIT ON THE HOUSING UNITS AT COLUMBI'S IN FORT BRAGG: The comments remind me of when some science based organization suggested that if we planted some very large number of trees that it would solve the climate change crisis. It seemed that every organization that had a plan, usually commercial, for carbon capture or alternatives to fossil fuels immediately jumped to criticize that approach. There was, to my recollection, no support for tree planting proposal that continued "and, in addition, let's build up solar/wind/wave or nuclear (ugh) power AS WELL." There was no support that continued AND carbon sequestration or any of the other ideas to save our civilization. (The planet and life will continue.) It is clear the coast needs housing, so support building housing. If every empty house were rented, not as a vacation rental, but as a residence, the housing shortage would be lessened. I want to see people housed who are willing and able to work for their housing. No one is entitled. It seems that neither the addicts, the alcoholics the mentally ill or the majority of voters in these United States have concern for the common good if it interferes with their “entertainment.” Did the last (mid-term) election prove that the price of gasoline trumped the price of freedom?

* * *

Outlet Creek & Eel River confluence (Jeff Goll)

* * *


A Sanctuary for us all!

Hello! Rainah and her 3 huskies here! We are ready for a new living situation. We have been renting & living at a house in Caspar for 6 years. Now the rent is higher than I can afford. I have been working as a masseuse for the Sweetwater Spa in Mendocino, teaching Yoga, and also offering CareGiving. I would love to stay in the area, and can pay aprox $ 1000 + utils/mo. If you have, or know of a large, back yard, (ideally fenced with ample shade and a lawn),....or orchard with a human space we could rent... you could help us out! The human space can be: a house, or cabin, or cottage or in-law unit. If there is an additional living space or house, or multiple rooms, I can manage an Air BnB for the owner....Also I can be an on-property Caregiver for a family needing that kind of service. My babies are outdoors when I leave home, mostly indoors when I am there. We are all conscious, considerate, clean and mostly quiet (though they tend to howl a welcome when friends arrive.) And all excellent references. If you know of a situation, or would like to hear more of our story, please contact me SOON! Or if you know of someone who might have a place or a creative solution, please share this flier! We can move as soon as April 1. email or call (707) 326-2919

Blessings and thanks for your support! Rainah & co.

Rainah Dancing Waters <>

* * *

SAFFRON BLUE FRASER: I am not opposed to roundabouts. I kinda think they might bring a downtowny feel, maybe. Especially with lights, and maybe some hanging baskets of flowers. But they ain't gonna do nothing for the rest of 128. Remember when they put those speed signs up in Philo and it became a challenge to hit 100 entering town, and how many accidents that caused? Or when they removed the crosswalk after that fatal accident?

* * *


Coming Soon to Fort Bragg: Bike and Pedestrian Friendly Bridge gets Green Light 

The California Transportation Commission (CTC) recently allocated approximately $11.7 million for the Pudding Creek Bridge Widening and Rail Upgrade Project located on State Route 1 in Fort Bragg, in Mendocino County.

The purpose of the project is to improve safety for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians. The project includes widening the bridge to accommodate two 12-foot wide lanes, two 8-foot wide shoulders, two 6-foot walkways and new bridge railings to meet current standards.

The project will soon go out to bid with construction planned to start this summer. Completion is expected by October 2023.

* * *


An area just north of the Humboldt/Mendocino County line continues to drop. Caltrans has had a one-way traffic control operation in place due to a slip-out in the area for at least two months.

The current open “lane” is actually on the uphill slope more on the roadside than on the normal roadway.

Concerns are mounting that the road could close and there is no detour readily obvious for the major north-south travel route.

However, according to Myles Cochrane, spokesperson for Caltrans, “24-7 monitoring of the site continues and so long as it’s open it’s safe. Crews continue to conduct and plan proactive stabilization efforts and have been mobilizing equipment in the event of further slide activity. We’re encouraging folks to follow us via ‘Caltrans District 1’ on social media for further updates if and when they’ll be necessary.”

#caltrans #SR1 #mendocinocoast #bridges

* * *

LARRY SHEEHY: Come on City of Ukiah. Let's convert School Street downtown into a beautiful pedestrian mall. Cars culture is out of control. Put 'em in a new 2 level parking garage where the current parking lot is. Downtown has beauty potential but not with cars ruling the current street. So there! Idealist me, so be it.

* * *

* * *


by Mark Scaramella

Supervisor Williams posted the following allegation on line recently: 

“Tuesday, March 14 BOS agenda item 4D is a ‘Presentation of Mid-Year Budget Report.’ Of particular concern to me is a projected reduction of $311k in revenue due to a lack of Supplemental Tax billing. Your elected Assessor completed the necessary tasks, but your elected Auditor-Controller/Tax-Collector has not. The County can only bill five years back, and after June, I believe these tax funds will be forever lost. Property tax is divided approximately 30% county, 63% schools, 5% districts, 2% cities. A $311k loss to County is perhaps a $652k loss to school districts? This is not a one-time failure. For 2015-2017, it appears the Tax Collector failed to bill $1.2M (~$2.5M loss to schools). I don't understand why supplemental tax bills have not been mailed year after year, but I see the impact every time I drive a county road. If we know the total, we must know the line items, so no matter what ‘software problems’ exist, someone should be able to print and mail bills? Harsh comments but troubling fact pattern. The Board of Supervisors can issue spot and discuss the problem, but lack authority to rectify.”

WHICH LOOKS LIKE ANOTHER ONE OF WILLIAMS’ too-slick-by-half shoot from the hip charges in his ongoing attempt to blame County-wide problems on Auditor-Controller/Treasurer-Tax Collector Chamise Cubbison. In case any readers are unfamiliar with one of Williams latest catch phrases, he claims to be “issue spotting” by coyly pointing his finger at “someone.” Which would be more credible if he “issue spotted” elsewhere now and then.

So, we forwarded Williams’ allegation to retired Treasurer-Tax Collector Shari Schapmire for a response.


“The County’s new property system was implemented in February 2021, prior to this implementation. At that time, the Assessor’s Office had a substantial backlog in reassessing property values due to changes in ownership and/or new construction completed. This is evidenced by referencing the years 2015-2017 where supplemental tax bills were not issued prior to the implementation of the new property system in February 2021. 

“As has been frequently shared, the transition to the new property system has been extremely difficult, to say the least. This was due to the complexities of California’s property tax laws, as well as the advanced age of the legacy system. [which goes back to the 1980s — ms] While there was little movement on issuing supplemental tax bills during the first year of implementation, it appears during the second year substantial progress has now been made, particularly with the Assessor.

“Supervisor Williams’ negative comments individually targeting the Auditor-Controller/Treasurer-Tax Collector for this “failure” appears to be punitive and shows a lack of knowledge on this topic. Had the substantial backlog not previously existed in the Assessor’s Office, the County would not currently be in danger of having ‘tax funds…forever lost’ due to the statute of limitations.”

Remember, all of these relatively small but important inter-related offices — the Assessor, the Treasurer Tax Collector and the Auditor Controller — are understaffed, but staffing levels in key departments are never “issue-spotted,” much less reported on on a monthly basis. Instead of throwing up his hands and saying the Supervisors are powerless to to act, Williams could help “rectify” the problem by focusing his Board and the CEO on staffing problems in these offices, particularly since the Supervisors were the ones who exacerbated the problem by an ill-considered and ill-timed consolidation of the Auditor/Tax Collector offices causing predictable disruptions, retirements and resignations. 

* * *

(photo mk)

* * *


Back to the good old days!

I guess the letter to the editor I wrote and you published back when Phase 3 was being considered entitled Impoverishing the Residents of Mendocino was prescient.

Sherif Kendall will be a busy man!

Best regards

Bill Claus


Item #: 4f)

Agenda Title: Discussion and Possible Action Including Direction to Staff to Prepare Environmental Document and Ordinance to Remove or Streamline the Requirement for Issuance of Local Permit for Cannabis Cultivation While Retaining All Substantive Legal Restrictions and Environmental Protection Measures for State Licensed Operators (Sponsors: Supervisor Williams and Supervisor McGourty)

Recommended Action/Motion: Direct staff to prepare environmental document and ordinance to remove or streamline the requirement for issuance of local permit for cannabis cultivation while retaining all substantive legal restrictions and environmental protection measures for state licensed operators.

Summary of Request: Mendocino County adopted a Cannabis Cultivation ordinance (10A-17) prior to the state completing its program licensing requirements. The County program is duplicative and poorly aligned with the requirements of the state program. The state proposed “Appendix G” to bridge the county’s ministerial permit approach with the site-specific discretionary review required by the state license. While it’s possible for the Mendocino Cannabis Department to create Appendix G for applicants, it’s a huge undertaking, even with state grants. Given the uncertainty of the expense of and fund availability for this task, The Board should decide whether a simplified approach would better protect public money, bolster code enforcement and safeguard cultivation applicants by removing the bottleneck of the county permitting program. Under this proposal, our present permitting process would be suspended. The same zoning, setbacks, and environmental regulations will apply for cannabis producers if they wish to produce this crop. They would apply directly to the state for a cannabis license and submit their own Appendix G document. Mendocino County would conduct inspections and code compliance and enforcement. Noncompliant cannabis producers would be reported to the State for potential sanctions up to and including license suspension.

Board of Supervisors Agenda Summary

* * *

Capt. Lansing's residence and church, Mendocino c. 1868 (photo by M.M. Hazeltine)

* * *


[a] Should we assume that ALL cannabiz applicants have the proper site conditions, adequate water, sufficient business acumen and general wherewithal to make it through the permit gauntlet? Or is it safe to assume that many folks don’t have sufficient water resources and flat and unforested land free of endangered species to allow for commercial operations? Maybe this has nothing to do with supposedly inept County employees or country bumpkins whose black market skills make them perfectly incapable of operating in a regulated market? Maybe this just has to do with the fact that the place you’ve been doing your thing on for 30 years doesn’t fit into the regulatory box? Or maybe all the black marketeers are really good at manipulating the demise of the small, legal Mendo farms that will probably never succeed anyways in the broader weed markets of Oklahoma indoor and LA megagrows…? Hmmmm

[b] Your assumptions are wrong, there are lots of business capable farmers with sites that meet the state environmental requirements.

Do you know the history of the cannabis dept losing Hundreds of applications? That is the definition of a inept county employees

Mendocino county loves to blame this problem on the state of California but losing Hundreds of applications was not the states fault.

* * *


Special Planning Commission Meeting Agenda - March 23, 2023

The Planning Commission's Special Meeting Agenda has been posted to the Departments website at:

* * *

Outlet Creek overflow (Jeff Goll)

* * *


NO ROUNDABOUT? My colleague, The Major, shuffling to the Boonville Post Office Monday afternoon, asked a two-person CalTrans survey crew if they were puzzling out property lines for the proposed roundabout or just an ordinary traffic survey. The young woman half of the team replied, “No. We're doing sidewalks. Anyway, where would we put roundabouts?” 

SIDEWALKS? It's possible that Big Orange has different survey teams for different projects, but exciting as sidewalks for Boonville might be, I'd be more excited about roundabouts, three of them the dimensions of the roundabout in Healdsburg at 253 and 128; Lambert Lane and 128; and Mountain View Road and 128, all of which would work to make Boonville feel more like a town and slow through traffic.

HEADLINE OF THE DAY: ‘$100 billion wiped off US banking market in SINGLE DAY as former White House adviser calls it 'tip of the iceberg': Bloodbath on Wall Street saw regional banks fall by up to 60% and the Big Four drawn into SVB's collapse contagion.’

PHILO’S ROBBIE LANE: After a yearlong struggle to get a decent drug education/harm reduction plan implemented in our local school, I’ve now been asked to put on an assembly and talk to the kids about my own past issues, and those of my contemporaries. Most of whom are deceased or incarcerated. I was lucky to have walked through the fire and came out a better, stronger man as a result.

At this point I’ll be flying solo. What I ask is that if there are any compassionate survivors of the life around the the Valley to please lend a hand and help me talk to these kids. The lives we save may be your children, nieces and nephews, neighbors, etc., etc. If you’ve got the stones for it, by all means let me know. I’m doing everything possible on my own. I could use a hand or two!

BETTER TO MARRY THAN TO BURN: Pope Francis said the Church's 11th-century celibacy rule was only a 'temporary prescription' and there was also 'no contradiction' for a priest to marry'. 

MONDAY MORNING'S BANK RUNS are still shaking out, and will be shaking out for some time. “Give a man a gun, he can rob a bank. Give a man a bank, he can rob the whole world,” as the old saw goes, and our banks have been robbing us since their inception. 

SHOVING BIDEN up front Monday morning to “calm jittery nerves” only reminds everyone that no one is at the helm of our badly listing ship of state.

ALTHOUGH Biden's Secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen, said over the weekend that there would be no bailouts for failed banks, Biden's handlers had him say this morning that Silicon Valley Bank's customer money will be available to them. He said its managers should be fired, and stated that taxpayers will not have to help bail out SVB and Signature Bank, going on to say what a great job he's doing in putting people to work. These contradictory remarks were followed by runs on a whole bunch of regional banks.

STEPHEN ROSENTHAL COMMENTS: "Interesting read by Casey O’Neill. Anyone remember when the BOS, in their eternal short-sighted stupidity, balked and challenged the Sheriff about purchasing a Snow Cat? I do."

I ALSO REMEMBER. Then-Sheriff Allman emphasized that even if you need the Snow Cat only once to save someone, it pays for itself, which it has big time in this, The Year of the Big Snows.

THIS PUBLIC LETTER from John Redding seems to have gone un-responded to, but isn't it significant that a trustee of Coast Health abandons the Adventist complex he oversees?

As a member of the Mendocino Coast Health Care District Board of Directors, I voted to affiliate the District with Adventist Health. We all had high hopes that health care would improve under their management. I cannot say that it has. 

I think we can all agree that the doctors, nurses, PAs, and other providers are all qualified and provide good care. They are not the problem, except in a few cases that people have told me about. 

Problems abound instead in non-medical areas. 

The new software system is unreliable as I can attest personally. If you get a referral, make sure you get a written copy because digital copies are prone to disappear as I and others have learned the hard way.

Another problem is scheduling and rescheduling appointments. The last straw for me was learning my annual checkup would be four months after I called. At which time I would ask for a referral for a colonoscopy that would perhaps be four months out as well. A problem not limited to just me.

And I strongly disapprove of how appointments are rescheduled. If you arrive to your appointment and discover the provider is out sick or on personal leave or whatever, you go to back of the line, another multi month wait. Any company with good customer service would make that person a priority even if it means working weekends. This makes the whole system unreliable.

So, I have made the decision to seek healthcare elsewhere. Just as many already do. I am interested in suggestions on where to go. And I don't need to hear from people who don't very much like me. They already told me where to go! lol

John Redding

HOLA, JABRONES! Our Spanish language consultant, Ms. Silva-Pena, said she was unfamiliar with the term jabrone, or jabroni, which, according to Google is a noun meaning a stupid, foolish, or contemptible person; loser, as in, “She always has a comeback to own the trolls and jabronis on Twitter.”

WE DEAL with a lot of jabrones in the newspaper business, and truth to tell, like a lot of Spanish insults, I like the sound of it, has a nice resonance with the added benefit that few gringos know what it means.

* * *

Fort Bragg after the 1906 earthquake

* * *


Last night of community event…

Bears and coyotes run free--on the screen, that is--on the last night of the International Wildlife Film Festival, on Friday, March 17, at the Ukiah Civic Center, 300 Seminary Ave. Two award-winning films will be featured. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with snacks and live music from Steve Hahm. Films start at 7 p.m. Tickets are available at the door for $10 for adults and $5 for children.

"Valley of the Bears" (52 min.) is set in the coastal valley of Bella Coola in British Columbia during the salmon run. The film explores the challenges of adopting a practice of coexistence between humans and bears while conflict between them is on the rise. The region has one of the highest concentration of bears and humans on the planet, causing this conflict to occur on a daily basis. Hunting of grizzly bears is prohibited and bear viewing by and for tourists is growing. Salmon numbers are low, forcing the bears to find other food sources such as foraging for food in town and breaking into people's homes. With gripping characters, stunning wildlife cinematography and storytelling of the highest caliber, this film tells the intimate story of what it's like to live with an incredible yet unpredictable apex predator.

Also playing is "Don't Feed the Coyotes" (31 min.), which explores the intertwined lives of San Francisco's urban coyotes. The story centers around a three-year-old coyote, fondly named Scout, and her territorial challenger, the scientifically dubbed 15F. Chronicling these animals' lives through the eyes of the two starkly different human researchers who are observing them, the film is about humans, the natural world, and the lines we've drawn between the two.

Proceeds from the film festival are an important funding source for the Redwood Valley Outdoor Education Project (RVOEP), a special program of the Ukiah Unified School District that provides outdoor environmental education programs to over 2,000 students a year.

For a full program of the film series and more information about the RVOEP, visit its website,

For further inquiries, contact Erich Sommer, RVOEP Education Coordinator, at 707-841-7029.

* * *


by Captain Rainbow

You heard right neighbors. After a 2 year hiatus while we waited around for the rest of the world to get on its feet the Anderson Valley Solar Grange will be hosting....well, all of you, 'er us, either onstage or in the hall for the 30th now called annualish Variety Show on Friday May 12th and Saturday May 13th.

The whole magilla began because there was no money to hire a band for the grand opening of the finally completed Grange hall (this is back in the early 90's). 6 years earlier the original hall built in 1939 burnt to the ground. The Grange didn't have much insurance, but an unlikely crew of volunteers began showing up every weekend, usually a bit hung over, to cut some boards and bang some nails.

Many of us feel that this running out of insurance and not having money was a blessing in disguise, forcing us to rely on each other, it forged new friendships and respect. Smokey Blattner was the head honcho and somehow he managed this mangy crew and came up with the cheapest deals on materials you can imagine. Finally it was time to throw a party and baptize this new hall. And there was literally no money. So what did we do? We said "guess we'll have to entertain ourselves".

The place was a bit barren with bare sheetrock all over, but we did cobble together a pit band, no sound system but there was a spotlight donated by the Boont Town Players and a stage curtain that the high school was tossing out. The show opening had Billy Dawson and Captain Rainbow dressed in bib overalls and doing the secret "Stranger's" handshake. They dragged out a partly burned up old trunk and claimed it was the only thing that survived the fire and hadn't been opened for 5 years.

Of course they had to shoot the lock off, it opened with a creak and oddly enough the sound of farm animals. Out of this trunk came a scythe then a manure fork with what looked like a cow pie which they tossed into the crowd. More animal sounds and some live chickens flapped out which were promptly gathered up by the 2 "Strangers" and tossed into the audience as well. The spotlight focused on the trunk and a rubber chicken popped up and danced to the band playing Turkey in the Straw.

Now more sound, it was singing, and darned if it wasn't the first act, a barber shop quartet climbed out of that old trunk and sang. Must of been pretty cramped in there, whew. Other acts followed, (but not out of the trunk), a great mix of valley people, kids, old folks rednecks and hippies having a good time together.

That show was only one night but we had so much fun it became a yearly event that grew to 2 nights and pretty quickly expanded to 20 acts each night give or take, with totally different acts each night.

Remember, this is a Variety show NOT a talent show. We run the gamut from first time kids, or grownups, to literally world class performers. There are no tryouts or auditions though there is a tech rehearsal the weekend before where all the acts come to learn the order and how to exit and enter, what kind of lighting they prefer and a sound check.

Betcha never knew the Roto Rooter guy sang opera or that waitress can balance a broom on her nose while roller-skating. The audience is the best, sometimes it feels like a large rather unruly family gathering where everyone is there to have a wonderful time with each other. And finally we CAN get together.

So, now it's your turn, it's your year. After all you've had 3 years to get ready! We are signing up acts right now. Don't be shy call either Abeja at 707/621-3822 or Cap Rainbow at 472/9189

* * *

* * *



We’ve moved to a next level of public outreach to change the name of Fort Bragg. With our website regularly updated by Adriana and our FaceBook page newly Administered by Mikael, in addition to our publicity outreach around the Essay Contest (resulting in a first page story in the Advocate-News) we are reaching more people than ever before and making a discussion of the name change a part of normal local conversation.

We also want to reach out to our representatives in Congress, the state legislature, City Council, School Board, etc. The most effective way to do this now is a letter writing campaign of persuasion and education.

To do so we need folks who can, three or four times a year, send an email or snail mail letter to a politician or newspaper.

We have a dozen letter writers we count on now and if we can get to 25 we can insure that people are regularly receiving mail and email from concerned residents.

It’s never been easier to contact a local or even national leader with email and these folks do pay attention to their mail. Each time we suggest a recipient for mail we’ll send out a sample letter you can simply resend or rewrite in your own words. 

So, please respond to me now and let me know if we can count on you for one email every three or four months (or more often if you can).

Thanks. This is how we change the name of Fort Bragg.

Philip Zwerling, Ph.D.

p.s. next meeting of Change Our Name is Saturday, March 18, at 2 p.m. Let me know if you’d like to attend

Change Our Name Fort Bragg,

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, Monday, March 13, 2023

Davis, Himel, Solares, Waggoner

CARL DAVIS, Willits. Domestic battery.

CHRISTINE HIMEL, Redwood Valley. DUI-alcohol&drugs, suspended license for DUI.

SILVIA SOLARES, Eureka/Ukiah. Misdemeanor hit&run, disobeying court order, failure to appear,

TYLER WAGGONER, Ukiah. Brandishing, resisting.

* * *


by Paul Modic

Kym Kemp has one of the best or possibly worst jobs around here. A self-made woman, she’s created her “Redheaded Black Belt” (RHBB) news website and become the most powerful person, or one of the most, in SoHum, maybe in Humboldt County, and possibly the North Coast and beyond. (She said she had been planning on being a lawyer, but then she got pregnant.)

It’s a bad job if Kym actually has to sit around all day reading every comment that appears on her site, like a human data-storage unit, a pulsing synapse absorbing and processing all the community bullshit spewed from mostly anonymous and often negative commenters on RHBB.

Taking in all the community’s angst cannot be good for her mental health either, I would be interested in how she deals with that, what coping mechanisms she has developed, though she seems fine judging from her positive online personality and her healthy sense of humor. (Well hey, it pays the bills and augments the bottom line as she navigates the challenges of her family marijuana business as well. I’d like to interview her as I’m curious and fascinated about how her website works, how money is generated, and how she created it.)

Is Kym dying for our sins everyday? We can glance at a story or comment stream, read a few if we’re interested or bored, but our local hero has to monitor the community exchange constantly, unless she has outsourced some of that to her staff.

She has become our cultural gatekeeper, providing access to her site for anything she wants, any breaking news story, announcement, listing of an event, opinion, column, or even a newsflash for a spontaneous local protest demonstration scheduled for later that day.

(A function “All Sides Now” on KMUD used to supply until the station was taken over by timid millennials, along with a couple of their pet boomers.)

The trolls she has to oversee and discipline, who would have no life without RHBB, might think she’s kind of a schoolmarm, but in his obituary she did publish the naked protest photo of her father-in-law Hardy and his fellow radicals, so she ain’t no prude.

When Kym doesn’t want to run something she’ll say, “This doesn’t fit my audience” but if her audience doesn’t like something they are stuck, there’s nowhere else to go, they’re not going to stop surfing and reading RHBB because there’s some post they disagree with. Kym’s audience is everyone around here, a diverse group of mostly White people. When Kym talks about “her audience” what I think she means is the audience of one: herself. It’s her site, she can run it however she wants, and publish whatever she wants as she’s created herself, with hard work, into being the major conduit to the perception of reality in Southern Humboldt USA. (Most of her stories and audience are based in Northern Humboldt and last year she got twenty million views.)

Power loves power and wants more, and other minor institutions and local cultural brokers such as KMUD, LOCO, NCJ, and the Anderson Valley Advertiser regulate their public comment zones tightly, although the AVA publishes virtually anyone’s opinion. (Sometimes it reminds me of those lyrics from “The Clash”: “These are your rights: You have the right to free speech, just so long as you don’t actually try it!”)

Kym can be described as tough but fair, she detests meanness, and is especially triggered by terms like “grow-ho” or any other words which she thinks are disparaging to women, or anyone else. (I don’t think it’s necessarily a sexist term, I definitely knew a few dudes who were grow-ho’s.)

She strongly discourages, if not deletes, comments criticizing anyone’s grammar, probably because she doesn’t want to discourage the text generation, and other uneducated oafs who make up a good chunk of her audience?

Yes, her site is a free-for-all for freedom of speech, although she does come in with her little “(edits)” daily with no explanation, which means she’s censored a word or sentence, some insult or an anonymous accusation of breaking the law posted by one of the trolls. (I’m still not clear on that one: I told her about when a still-living local, Tuna Jackson, spiked a nursing mother’s coffee with LSD fifty years ago at Needle Rock and she said she wouldn’t publish that, although any statute of limitations have long-since run out, right?)

It’s Kym’s Kommunity, her very extended family where old hippies, rednecks, growers, millennials and everyone in between, living in little cities, towns, villages, or out lonely dirt roads, from Orick to Hopland and beyond, check out the very latest breaking news or interesting opinion piece. Most don’t comment and some of the ones who do can be disturbing and humorless right-wingers who seem to appear on every thread, probably satisfied to have a safe place to express themselves in deep blue California and Humboldt, although they never seem very happy doing their rote Biden-bashing or whatever.

Kym is welcoming to all, maybe that’s the click-bait business model which brings in a penny a comment or whatever, but man, some people take it really seriously, have intense conversations with each other, and treat it like the virtual neighborhood it is, a meeting place to share any thoughts, ideas, and links. When it gets too heated Kym has to enter the conversation and “rap some knuckles” when the “insult quotient” ramps up beyond her level of comfort. (She’s trying to run a clean show here people!)

These anonymous characters, after a few years developing their online personalities, “know” each other and their tendencies. Most are civil, good citizens, but the whiners are probably mostly angry men to whom things aren’t going that well, any fun has passed them by, but they can put their hands on their phones or laptops and feel the ersatz connection to this community Kym has somehow, someway, created for the huddled masses yearning to be heard.

* * *

STACEY WARDE: As a young person I determined that the best way to die was to die laughing. Then, as time wore on, I worried that I might laugh less to avoid the inevitable and have instead found myself laughing more.

* * *


we all saw

we saw it all

well maybe not all

is all we saw

let me explain

you’re much amazed

so let me tell

the facts the facts

pinned to the wall

what is a fact

we all agree

comes down to much

of what we see

here’s what you saw

we all do see

is all we need

for inquiry

that’s all been done

and all been seen

they’ll tell us more

if there be need

see the pictures

pages read

stay tuned

and use the ear

what more to this

than what we hear

whataya wanta know

what do you want to know

— Gordon Black

* * *

Spec's, Frisco

* * *


by Matt Maiocco

Upon completion of his cross-country trip that late-October day in 2017, Jimmy Garoppolo was anointed as the 49ers' franchise quarterback.

He was the player entrusted with the responsibility -- and expectation -- of bringing the organization back to prominence. What a memorable 5 1/2-year ride it was with Garoppolo as the face of the organization.

“I’m so grateful to Jimmy for everything he did for our organization," 49ers general manager John Lynch recently told NBC Sports Bay Area. "He played some really good football and was a great teammate.”

Garoppolo's time with the 49ers came to an end Monday after the quarterback reportedly agreed to a three-year, $67.5 million contract with the Las Vegas Raiders, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.

It was not a surprise, of course.

Coach Kyle Shanahan two days after the 2022 NFL season said he saw "no scenario' in which Garoppolo would remain with the 49ers -- not when Trey Lance and Brock Purdy were under contract and slated as the top two quarterbacks (in whatever order) for at least two more seasons.

While Garoppolo never became the star player the 49ers hoped they were getting in a trade from the New England Patriots, there is little debate he leaves the organization in a better place than when he arrived.

“First of all, he comes in and looks like a movie star," Lynch said. "Then, he gets on the field and he’s a really gifted thrower.”

The 49ers were 0-8 in the first season of the Shanahan-Lynch regime when the deal was made to acquire Garoppolo.

He arrived at Levi's Stadium for the first time in the passenger seat of a black Chevy Suburban. He stepped out amid a throng of media, 49ers employees and his agents.

It was clear Garoppolo, after serving 3 1/2 years as Tom Brady’s backup in New England, was comfortable in the 49ers’ driver’s seat.

At his introductory press conference, Garoppolo began speaking even before Lynch or Shanahan could say a word.

"I think Kyle will tell you a great quality of a quarterback is taking charge," Lynch said that day. "I thought I was starting. But, hey, have at it, Jimmy."

He moved into the starting lineup for the final five games of the 2017 season. The 49ers won each of those five games to pump some life into the win-starved fan base.

"When you win your first five games, he was on fire," Lynch said. "It did create a lot of energy. We talk about where Levi’s Stadium is now as a home-field advantage. I think a lot of that started with that run we started with Jimmy."

It started out like a storybook. Garoppolo experienced immediate success with little knowledge of the playbook. He was deemed ready to play after only a month with the team.

After leading the 49ers to five consecutive victories to finish his first season with the club, the 49ers awarded him with a five-year, $137.5 million contract.

The big contract, of course, led to even bigger expectations and pressure to perform.

Garoppolo proved to be a leader in the years that followed, especially with his handling of the 2021 and '22 seasons after the club traded up to No. 3 overall to select his successor, Lance, in the NFL draft.

Garoppolo brought hope with him to Santa Clara, and he largely delivered. When he was on the field, the 49ers won a lot of games. The 49ers were 38-17 in the regular season when he was in the starting lineup. The club won four of his six postseason games.

Garoppolo, with his charm and good looks, represented a new era for the 49ers. And in the just two seasons in which he appeared in every game, the 49ers advanced to the Super Bowl.

However, that game ended in disappointment as the 49ers blew a 10-point fourth-quarter lead in a 31-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV.

Almost immediately, Garoppolo lifted the profile of the 49ers after the franchise went through one of its lowest points.

The 49ers struggled through the organizational dysfunction of former general manager Trent Baalke and his uneasy pairings with head coaches Jim Harbaugh, Jim Tomsula and Chip Kelly.

The new regime of Shanahan and Lynch provided optimism for the future. It was clear this was not going to be a simple rebuild. Thus, CEO Jed York gave them matching six-year contracts.

Their first season together was a throw-away. Lynch and Shanahan planned to defer on the quarterback position until 2018 free agency, when Kirk Cousins would become available.

The 49ers passed on Mitchell Trubisky, Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson in the 2017 NFL Draft. Instead, they went with a placeholder veteran, Brian Hoyer, at quarterback and selected C.J. Beathard with the No. 104 overall pick.

And that is the way their quarterback situation remained until the middle of the season when their future came into focus. Cousins no longer was an option after Garoppolo landed in their laps.

On the eve of the NFL trade deadline, New England coach Bill Belichick made a call to Shanahan, who was on his way into the office. He offered Garoppolo to the 49ers for a second-round draft pick. Take it or leave it.

After Shanahan had a short conversation with Lynch, they opted to take it.

Immediately, Garoppolo took the spotlight as the most talked-about player on the team. And that is where he remained until this day.

Garoppolo, 31, figured to leave the 49ers a year ago. Two days after the 2021 season, Garoppolo said his farewells, certain the 49ers would trade him in the offseason. But his trade value tanked when he opted for shoulder surgery.

Garoppolo accepted a significant pay cut to remain with the 49ers as Lance's backup. But he was in the backup role for just one game. He moved back into the starting lineup when Lance sustained a season-ending fractured lower leg in Week 2.

Garoppolo was playing the best football of his career when he sustained a season-ending injury of his own -- a fractured left foot in Week 13 against the Miami Dolphins that opened the door for Purdy.

Injuries marred Garoppolo's time with the 49ers, beginning in his second season.

The 49ers entered the 2018 season with high hopes, but it came crashing down in Week 3 against Kansas City when Garoppolo sustained a torn ACL in his left knee.

In all, four of his five full seasons with the 49ers were marred by injuries.

After he missed 23 games due to injuries in his first three full seasons, the 49ers decided to build around somebody else.

On March 26, 2021, the 49ers sent first-round draft picks in 2022 and '23, along with a third-rounder in 2022, to the Dolphins, moving up to No. 3 overall to select Lance to ultimately replace Garoppolo as the team's quarterback of the future.

“The biggest thing with Jimmy is his injuries. That’s been very tough for us when he's been hurt,” Shanahan said on April 26, 2021. “It's happened two out of these three years, and that's where it starts, and Jimmy knows that.”

But Garoppolo remained with the 49ers two more seasons. Twice more, injuries sidelined or limited him greatly at the end of the season.

Now, the book closes on Garoppolo’s time with the 49ers.

In 55 regular-season starts, Garoppolo completed 67.6 percent of his pass attempts (No. 1 in franchise history) for 13,599 yards with 82 touchdowns, 42 interceptions and a passer rating of 99.2 (second only behind Steve Young in club history).

In 2019, when he started every game, his 3,978 passing yards ranked fourth in club history. His 69.1 completion percentage was third in 49ers history for a single season. Joe Montana and Young had only one season apiece in which they completed a higher percentage of passes.

The 49ers again were a favorite to go all the way this past season. But when the club advanced to the NFC Championship Game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Garoppolo was nothing but a spectator, unable to play due to his fractured foot.

Purdy sustained a torn elbow ligament on the 49ers' sixth offensive play of the game. Then, backup Josh Johnson was ruled out early in the third quarter due to a concussion.

“I wish I had a helmet,” Garoppolo told Jennifer Lee Chan of NBC Sports Bay Area before exiting the locker room at Lincoln Financial Field.

Garoppolo walked up to 49ers owners Dr. John York and Denise DeBartolo York and gave each a hug. As he walked away, he told them, “Everything will work out.”

Garoppolo came so close to placing his name alongside Montana and Young as San Francisco’s Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks.

Instead of comparisons to Montana and Young, Garoppolo's legacy with the 49ers is more difficult to define.

The Jimmy Garoppolo Era was fun. A favorite of the 49ers' ardent fan base, Garoppolo always will be a popular figure when he returns to Levi's Stadium to face his former team.

The 49ers are set up to be contenders for a while with an already-strong roster. Lance was brought in to keep the team near the top of the NFL. Purdy showed he can get the job done, too.

Yes, things looked a lot different for the 49ers when Garoppolo appeared on the scene to help rescue a team that looked hopeless during the 2017 season.

But quarterbacks around these parts are judged by championships, and the trophy case looks no different than when he arrived.

(SF Chronicle)

* * *


by Piers Morgan

After The Slap that was heard around the world, I imagine that success for the producers of this year’s Oscars looked exactly like what went down: uneventful, safer than a deposit account at Silicon Valley Bank, and devoid of physical violence.
Host Jimmy Kimmel set the tone for the 95th Academy Awards with an opening monologue so warm, cuddly, and dripping in sycophantic saccharine toward the star-studded audience, it would make Ricky Gervais self-immolate from shame if he’d ever had to read it out.

But Kimmel’s feather-stroking performance served its primary purpose of resetting Hollywood’s biggest night as a fist-free festival of joyful movie celebration rather than an unscripted UFC bout.

Here, then, are my own Uncensored Oscars:

The ‘What the F – k Were They Thinking?’ fashion award: Sorry, ladies, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a worse collection of dresses than last night. From Halle Berry’s weird Ostrich look to Olivia Wilde’s slightly desperate “I’m over toyboy Harry, you have to believe me” tiny black leather bra and Chrissy Teigen’s eye-lacerating green and lemon feather fiasco, it was like all the top designers had either gone on strike or secretly hate their clients.

Biggest A-list A – hole: Hugh Grant’s pathetically juvenile antics on the red carpet, where he seemed to delight in humiliating interviewer Ashley Graham by reluctantly spitting out glib, surly answers to all her questions, confirmed his status as the world’s worst thespian douchebag (and sparked my popcorn attack). If you don’t want to speak to the media, why the hell walk down the longest red carpet in show business? When Kimmel joked, “If anyone in this theatre commits an act of violence at any point during the show, you will be awarded the Oscar for best actor and permitted to give a 19-minute-long speech,” I can’t have been the only viewer quietly hoping Will Smith might storm in again and whack Grant in his self-satisfied scrotum.

Donald Trump Award for Sore Loser: Angela Bassett looked like she was glugging a vinegar bottle when she heard she’d lost the Best Supporting Actress to Jamie Lee Curtis. Bassett’s abject failure to even pretend to be gracious wasn’t the best ad for her acting skills.

Most Heartwarming Moment: Not since Roberto Benigni clambered ecstatically over the chairs have I felt quite as pleased for a winner as I did for Everything Everywhere All at Once star Ke Huy Quan, whose emotional speech about coming to the United States as a refugee and now living the American Dream brought a lump to my awards-weary throat.

Most Selfish Nominee: A singer named Tems (nope, me neither) sat in the audience wearing a gigantic white curtain around and above her head that meant nobody in the 30 rows behind her could see the stage. I’d have scissored it to pieces if I finally snagged an Oscars seat and she pulled that eclipse stunt on me.

Most Annoying Animal: Cocaine Bear already irritated the hell out of me on stage, but when it started harassing Malala Yousafzi, I wanted it euthanized live on air.

Least Annoying Animal: Jenny the donkey from The Banshees of Inisherin got a huge ovation for not uttering a single word. Yes, a mute mule got more applause than most of the overly verbose winners.

Most Disappointing Dress-Down: Lady Gaga looked fabulously glamorous sitting in the crowd, then inexplicably ditched her dazzling makeup, stunning dress and glittering diamonds to perform her Top Gun: Maverick song “Hold My Hand” looking like an impoverished busker. She sang it beautifully, but c’mon, m’Lady, it’s the Oscars, not Thursday night karaoke at the local senior centre.

Saddest Speech: Tearful John Travolta never mentioned Grease co-star Olivia Newton-John’s name in his introduction to the In Memoriam tribute, but he didn’t need to. We all knew whom he was talking about when he said: “They’ve touched our hearts, they’ve made us smile, and became dear friends who we will always remain hopelessly devoted to.”

Best Zinger: I loved Best Actress winner Michelle Yeoh’s jibe at CNN’s sexist Don Lemon: “Ladies, don’t let anyone tell you you are ever past your prime.” Especially knowing that somewhere, dinosaur Don was watching, and spontaneously suffocating from mortification.

Least Appropriate Partygoer: Justin Bieber just cancelled the rest of his Justice world tour, citing “health issues,” so what was he doing sneaking into the Vanity Fair after-party wearing a multi-coloured blanket?

Missed Opportunity award: Kimmel quipped that the audience looked so great, they must all be on the new “miracle” diet drug Ozempic. If only they could have used it to trim down the length of the show, which ran over three and a half hours. “It kind of makes you miss the slapping a little bit, right?” mused Kimmel at one point, as our eyelids began to clamp again. Yes, it did.

Steve McQueen Great Escape award: Glenn Close, who caught Covid so couldn’t attend the ceremony.


* * *



This past month I paid $106 for natural gas and $65 for electricity. This is in Laramie, Wyoming, where the average daily high and low temperature are 33 and 14 degrees. My 1,000-square-foot, 1879-built house leaks air like a sieve, and my undersized furnace works almost nonstop. Santa Rosa’s average high and low are 60 and 39 for the same time frame. A friend’s 1,200-square-foot home in Montgomery Village is $550 for gas and electricity.

I’ve been contemplating a move back to Northern California but have put those plans on hold as I compare what my cost of living would be, even in Lake County, compared to staying put and snowbirding. Energy cost is a major concern as I live on a relatively comfortable fixed income.

PG&E is owned by shareholders and is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. There is a layer in the corporation that sucks money away from service provision and infrastructure maintenance because it is privately held. That is just crazy. Everyone who uses gas and electricity provided by PG&E needs to be a shareholder and the endless search to maximize profits ended.

Jeffrey J. Olson

Laramie, Wyoming

* * *


[1] “PG&E is owned by shareholders and is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. There is a layer in the corporation that sucks money away from service provision and infrastructure maintenance because it is privately held.” 

[2] Jeffrey J. Olson: It's worse than that. Their liabilities in the recent fires all over Northern Cal have been covered by being allowed to bill customers to cover those liabilities. The CEO's annual compensation is $52 million a year. Can anyone tell me what she does to pull down $1 million a week?

[3] YES! She films folksy ads of herself walking around jobsites, sporting a ponytail and wearing a safety vest and hardhat.

* * *

* * *


The idea that current and future taxpayers are not on the hook for this is absolutely laughable. You get a better sense of how depraved these fucks truly are when you watch them say things that are patently false without even a hint of embarrassment or hesitation. What else are they lying about without a moment’s thought. Well, everything.

The taxpayer pays for EVERYTHING. I don’t care if banks pay the insurance premiums to the FDIC and whatever other cockamamie schemes they have going. The fees the banks pay impact the interest rates they offer depositors. The fees the banks pay also impact the fees they charge depositors and borrowers. If the FED just prints money to paper over things today, all of us are holding dollars that are now worth less than last week. All shit rolls downhill.

The taxpayer is already paying for banking stupidity and will continue to do so.

* * *

A GREAT WOMAN erased from history by idiots.

The branding of the syrup was a tribute to this woman’s gifts and talents. Now future generations will not even know this beautiful woman existed. What a shame. The world knew her as “Aunt Jemima,” but her given name was Nancy Green and she was a true American success story. 

She was born a slave in 1834 Montgomery County, KY. and became a wealthy superstar in the advertising world, as its first living trademark. Green was 56-yrs old when she was selected as spokesperson for a new ready-mixed, self-rising pancake flour and made her debut in 1893 at a fair and exposition in Chicago. She demonstrated the pancake mix and served thousands of pancakes, and became an immediate star. She was a good storyteller, her personality was warm and appealing, and her showmanship was exceptional. Her exhibition booth drew so many people that special security personnel were assigned to keep the crowds moving. Nancy Green was signed to a lifetime contract, traveled on promotional tours all over the country, and was extremely well paid. Her financial freedom and stature as a national spokesperson enabled her to become a leading advocate against poverty and in favor of equal rights for all Americans. She maintained her job until her death in 1923, at age 89. This was a remarkable woman, and sadly she has been ERASED by politics. I wanted you to know and remind you in this cancel culture time period.

* * *

SUGGESTED OPENING sentence for Moby Dick:

Call Ishmael they.

* * *

* * *


by Peter Maas

If you need to unite a hundred bickering historians of the Middle East, you could ask them to identify the Iraqi city that suffered the greatest amount of violence at the hands of the U.S. military. They would all say “Fallujah.”

Fallujah is where, just a few weeks after the fall of Baghdad in 2003, soldiers of the 82nd Airborne Division opened fire on a crowd of civilian protesters and killed 17 of them; the U.S. military claimed that the first shots came from Iraqis, but there is no convincing evidence for that assertion and significant reporting to the contrary. Fallujah was a stronghold of the ousted dictator Saddam Hussein and for that reason, its residents fiercely opposed an unprovoked invasion that was, according to international law, flagrantly illegal.

Those killings were the prelude to a torrent of violence and destruction in 2004. The bloodshed that year included the deaths of more than 1,000 civilians; the point-blank murder of prisoners; and the torture of inmates at Abu Ghraib prison, just 20 miles away. Fallujah’s punishment even extended beyond the brutal era of its U.S. occupation; in years after, there has been a spike in cancers, birth defects, and miscarriages, apparently due to America’s use of munitions with depleted uranium.

Instead of apologizing for what was done, the U.S. is choosing to celebrate it: The Pentagon announced this week that a $2.4 billion warship will be named the USS Fallujah…

* * *

* * *


by James Kunstler

Money is all theoretical… until it’s not. Paper money is bad enough, as France learned under the tutelage of the rascal John Law in the early 1700s. The nation was broke, exhausted by foolish wars, and heaped under unbearable debt. Monsieur Law, a Scottish genius-wizard (the Jerry Lewis of political economy), landed in Paris, cast a spell on the regent Duc d’Orléans, set up a magic credit engine fueled by dreams of untold riches-to-come burgeoning out of the vast, new-found lands called Louisiana up the Mississippi River, and modern finance was born!

The stock-and-money schemes known as the Mississippi Bubble soon ruined France and put finance in such a bad odor that the word “banque” could not be used in polite society there for a century to come. Monetary inflation became a thing for the first time since Roman days — a much easier trick with printed paper banknotes than with silver coins — but the effect was the same: the evaporation of “wealth” (which is what money supposedly represents). At the height of the crisis, trading in gold was criminalized, though that was so easily worked-around due to sheer custom and habit that the Crown had to re-legalized it. The frenzy from start to finish lasted only a few years, but the nation was set on the path that would eventually lead to revolution. Law ended his days dolefully running card games in Venice.

Likewise, the creaking polity called the USA in our time, spawned many new incarnations of John Law as it transitioned from being “the arsenal of democracy” — you know, making real things — to a land of make-believe, where unicorns galloped over rainbows conjured by computer magic and utopian wishes of equity, diversity, and inclusion. The overhang of previously amassed wealth kept those dreams going long after we discontinued the rough and messy business of making stuff, and thereby generating real wealth. But now a klaxon blares, signaling the end of dream-time, and the nation wakes up in a ramshackle house with the floor giving way under the bed.

The rot was plain to see in the banking architecture built on US treasury paper (bills, notes, bonds) as rising interest rates undercut the price of all the debt paper issued previously at lower rates. And this was the collateral that banks generally held the depositor’s money in. So, when it became necessary to declare a problem with the balance sheet, and cash had to be raised to cover it, the treasury paper could only be sold at a loss, liabilities exceeded assets, word got out, depositors rushed to secure the money in their accounts, and that was all she wrote for yon bank, in this case, Silicon Valley Bank, the first to crumble.

Since banks today exist in a vast matrix of interconnected obligations — promises to pay this-and-that — fear grows that the rot from one bank, such as SVB, will infect many other banks that are no longer able to keep their promises about paying this-and-that, leading to a daisy-chain of things not getting paid. For an economy, that’s about the same as the blood ceasing to circulate in a body.

The practice in situations such as this (say, as in 2008-09) is for the governing authorities — who supposedly rule over the banking world like gods — to rush to rescue these outfits with “liquidity,” money (or representations of it) as required to re-balance things, or, maybe provide the impression of re-balancing until something else can be figured out. The Jupiter and Minerva of American banking, Jay Powell and Janet Yellen, were faced with just that sort of call for divine intervention over the weekend as fear seeped into every nook and crevice of the money world that wealth was flaring away in the long-feared-of conflagration out of the dumpster banking had become.

Sunday morning, Ms. Yellen told CBS News “bailouts, no way” but by the afternoon Mr. Powell cried “bailouts, way,” and they had to get their story straight. They offered up $25-billion to bail out depositors for a smoldering system that will arguably require a trillion dollars or more of liquidity to quench the spreading fires. One thing looks for sure: the interest rate hikes that Mr. Powell spoke of so confidently only days ago just got stashed into his folder labeled “Fuggeddabowdit.” So, the campaign to control inflation must now yield to the urgent need to create a whole lot of money to spray over those fires.

You may have noticed that the value of your money has been slip-sliding away the past year or so. Peanut butter at five bucks a jar, and all. The situation at hand kind of guarantees that we’ll be seeing a whole ole lot more of that. And then the gods of money will have lost control of the interest rate console altogether. No more tweaking the broken knobs. More inflation will prompt US treasury paper holders to dump what they can while there’s still some value to retrieve. But the US has to issue more debt for all the bail-outs and theoretical buyers of new debt will perforce bid up the rates to keep up with inflation… and yet the US can’t possibly bear the burden of paying higher interest on its debt. Looks like the business model for running the USA is breaking down before our eyes.

Luckily, Cap’n “Joe Biden” is at the helm of this steaming garbage barge. His conference room full of geniuses is ready with the solution to our predicament: the long-mythologized Central Bank Digital Currency — a dream-come-true for would be tyrants… the Godzilla of unicorns whinnying atop the biggest rainbow of all: the promise of endless magic money for everybody, forever. All you have to do to get it is: surrender your decision-making power over your own life. The government will amalgamate your few remaining assets in a CBDC account, tell you exactly what to spend it on, and shut off your little card if you show any contrary impulses.

Well, they can try it. I doubt it will work. Instead, the government will melt down in its own rancid puddle of insolvency, the meta-grift will grind to an end, and it will be everyone for his / her / they self in the broke-down Palace of Chaos for a while… until things emergently reconstruct. But I get a little ahead of myself. It’s not even ten o’clock on Monday morning.

Oh, and then there’s Ukraine….

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)

* * *

Still from Zelensky film (2018)

* * *


Situation in Bakhmut ‘very tough’

Wagner founder Yevgeny Prigozhin said on Sunday the situation in Bakhmut was “tough, very tough”, as both sides report heavy casualties.

At least one person was wounded in the southern Russian region of Belgorod after Moscow’s forces shot down four missiles, the region’s governor said.

Chinese President Xi Jinping is planning to travel to Moscow to meet President Vladimir Putin as soon as next week, people familiar with the matter told the Reuters news agency.

One of Putin’s top allies doubts reports that a pro-Ukrainian group blew up the Nord Stream gas pipelines last year.

* * *

* * *

IMPERIAL NARRATIVE MANAGERS Always Try To Make Peace Seem Unnatural

by Caitlin Johnstone

I’ve been ranting all week about the shocking war-with-China propaganda escalation in Australian mainstream media, and I feel like I could easily scream about it for another month without running out of vitriol for the disgusting freaks who are pushing this filth into the consciousness of my countrymen. One really really can’t say enough unkind things about people who are openly trying to pave the way toward an Atomic Age world war; in a remotely sane world such monsters would be driven from human civilization and die cold and alone in the wilderness with nothing but their bloodlust to keep them company.

One of the most obnoxious things said during this latest propaganda push appeared in the joint statement provided by the five “experts” (read: empire-funded China hawks) recruited by The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age to share their obscenely hawkish opinions in an official-looking media presentation. This paragraph has been rattling around in my head since I first read it:

“Australia must prepare itself. Most important of all is a psychological shift. Urgency must replace complacency. The recent decades of tranquillity were not the norm in human affairs but an aberration. Australia’s holiday from history is over. Australians should not feel afraid but be alert to the threats we face, the tough decisions we must make and know that they have agency. This mobilisation of mindset is the essential prerequisite to any successful confrontation of China.”

Do you see what they’re doing there? These professional China hawks are explicitly trying to frame peace as a strange “aberration”, and war as the status quo norm. They’re saying Australians require a “psychological shift” and a “mobilisation of mindset” from thinking peace is normal and healthy to thinking war is normal and healthy.

Which is of course ass-backwards and shit-eating insane. Every normal, healthy person regards peace as the default position and violence as a rare and alarming aberration which must be avoided whenever possible.

We know this is true from our normal human experience of our own personal lives. None of us spend the majority of our time getting into fist fights, for example; anyone who spends most of their waking life physically assaulting people has probably been locked up a long time ago. If you have ever been in a fist fight you will recall that it was experienced as a rare and alarming occurrence, and everything in your body was screaming at you that this was a freakish and unnatural thing which must end as quickly as possible the entire time. In healthy people violence is experienced as abnormal, and its absence is experienced as normal.

This normal, baseline position is what imperial narrative managers spend their time trying to “psychologically shift” everyone away from, propagandizing us instead into accepting continuous conflict and danger as the norm. Such a shift is beneficial to the empire, to war profiteers, and to professional war propagandists, and is entirely destructive to everyone else. It causes us to accept material conditions which directly harm our own interests, and it makes us crazy and neurotic as a civilization.

You see it all the time though, like whenever there’s a push to withdraw imperial troops from some part of the Middle East they’ve been in for years, or the slightest discussion of maybe not raising the military budget this year, or skepticism that pouring weapons into a violence-ravaged part of the world is the wisest and most helpful thing to do.

Any time we see the slightest beginnings of the tiniest movement toward stepping away from the path of nonstop warmongering and militarism, pundits and politicians begin bleating words like “isolationism” and “appeasement” in an attempt to make calls for de-escalation, demilitarization, diplomacy and detente look freakish and abnormal in contrast to the sane, responsible status quo of hurtling toward nuclear armageddon at full tilt.

Their job is to abnormalize peace and normalize war, which means our job as healthy human beings is to do the exact opposite. We must help everyone understand the horrors of war and the unfathomable nightmares that can be unleashed by reckless brinkmanship, and help people to understand that peace is what’s healthy and to imagine a future where it is the norm.

The bad news is that we are pushing against a narrative-manufacturing apparatus that is backed by the might of a globe-spanning empire. The good news is that our vision is the one that’s based on truth, and deep down everyone can sense it. All we need to do to get people viewing peace as normal and war as abnormal is to remind people of what they already know inside.


* * *

Walter Molino illustration (1965)


  1. Marmon March 14, 2023

    I can’t believe it’s Bank Collapse Season already. I still had my Train Derailment decorations up!


    • Marmon March 14, 2023


      A Message from CEO, Scott Johnson
      Community First Credit Union

      “Our mission is and remains firmly centered on serving and enriching the financial well-being of the residents who live, work, and worship in Sonoma, Marin, Napa, Lake, and Mendocino counties. Our mission is to serve the needs of Main Street, not Wall Street.

      I suspect you may have read or heard about the recent failure of two large US banks. Those institutions were heavily concentrated in venture capital firms, fintech startup companies, and crypto-currency markets. Community First does not serve nor has any affiliation with these markets. We serve our local members who value a banking relationship aligned with the mission of a locally-owned cooperative firmly committed to the communities we serve.”


  2. Brian Wood March 14, 2023

    About the planned roundabouts in Boonville (?), there is much to be said for traffic calming measures through town. Having them might even promote a cheery “down-towny” feel as Saffron suggests. But I don’t like that Caltrans plans are kept in the dark from those of us who live and work here. Apparently not until they’re put in will we know what we’re getting. And sidewalks? How about some nice boardwalk just north of the Post Office to save the stately trees whose gnarly roots cause people to trip. Is Caltrans planning to save those trees when they pave walks there? I doubt it, but who knows? Caltrans rightly has jurisdiction over the highway but, when so much of Boonville is built around the highway itself, allowance should be made for some community input and review.

  3. Nathan Duffy March 14, 2023

    RE; Jabroni. Back in my drinkin days we used to lean on the Italian drink Negroni which is one part gin, one part vermouth and one part campari.
    We soon amended it to Our Drink the Jabroni, one part gin, one part vodka, one part campari one part lime juice.. Was vermouth too classy? I don’t know but the key is to buy the more expensive gin and vodka and get a campari substitute without the red no. 5 in it. Many an evening we introduced others to our drink and the refrain was typically something like, “Damn you guys drink gasoline???!!!????” It was indeed a stiff drink. I invite any current boozers to give it a whirl. Oh and because it was a drink for camping that required many limes our refrain was “Limes are for camping!!!!”

  4. Harvey Reading March 14, 2023

    “SHOVING BIDEN up front Monday morning to “calm jittery nerves” only reminds everyone that no one is at the helm of our badly listing ship of state.”

    Good one, and so sadly true.

  5. Casey Hartlip March 14, 2023

    Silicon Valley Bank made it’s bed and they should sleep in it. I love the fact big Joe wants accountability and “people should be fired”. From the guy who hasn’t held any of his admin folks feet to the fire. The botched withdrawal from Afghanistan to me is the poster child of this. Not a single military leader lost his job for the poorly planned operation.

  6. Mike J March 14, 2023

    Here’s some background and vivid imagery by Molino…..who did alot with UFO/alien encounter themes. Based in Italy

    The latest finished paper, especially designed as an introductory briefing for journalists and Congress (as multiple committees prepare for hearings) as well as the public

  7. Stephen Rosenthal March 14, 2023

    Dear Philip Zwerling, Ph.D.,

    I suggest you take a moment out of, I’m sure, your busy schedule and read CALL Ishmael they’s tribute to Nancy Green, aka, Aunt Jemima. Despite your Ph.D., you might learn something. As in, you’re one of the idiots Ishmael is referring to.

  8. Anonymous March 14, 2023

    Excited by the pg&e commentary here, but why aren’t more towns doing what mighty Pt. Arena just did?

  9. Craig Stehr March 14, 2023

    ~Aham Brahmasmi~
    Awoke early at the Building Bridges Homeless Resource Center in Ukiah, California, and following morning ablutions, walked to Plowshares Peace and Justice Center for a sumptuous, free meal served by those dedicated Catholic Workers. Took an MTA bus to the library, and am presently on computer #5 tap, tap, tapping away. Identified with the Immortal Atman (Pure Spirit) and not the body and not the mind. Here. Now. Every morning taking the blood pressure and hypertension pills which the cardiovascular department of Adventist Health prescribed. The heart monitor is on for two weeks, which will be mailed in to the lab soon. The pulmonary situation is much better; am presently sucking on a Mucinex cough drop.
    I would like to leave Mendocino county and go forth to engage in spiritually based direct action, for the purpose of destroying the demonic, particularly from the view of radical environmentalism and attenuating peace & justice. I am seeking others to team up with on the planet earth. Please comprehend that I am indeed grateful for the past year of relative ease and survivability here in northern California. Many afternoons have been spent just sitting on a bench doing absolutely nothing, watching the passing show. I’m not sure what the value is of becoming adept at doing nothing; maybe the zen buddhists can explain it, but I am ready to move on. It is time for all of us to intervene in history. Here. Now.
    Aham Brahmasmi >>>

    Craig Louis Stehr
    1045 S. State Street, Ukiah, CA 95482
    Telephone Messages: (707) 234-3270
    March 14, 2023 Anno Domini

  10. Lorenzo Rota March 14, 2023

    Thanks for your timely piece about supplemental property tax bills! I had just got off the phone earlier from chatting with the Tax Collector and Tax Assessor because I was wondering where was my supplemental tax bill from a home purchase last year. No one had a clue how much I owed or when the bill would go out ..or what the payment terms would be.?? I have never experienced this in any other CA county . Every other county, Id get a supplemental tax bill later in the year or the first quarter of the following year. I was told the new system isn’t working yet and no one knows when it will work. I dont know what to say, Im not a financial or text expert … is it that complex??

  11. izzy March 15, 2023

    The Wonder Down Under

    Caitlin Johnstone is obviously right to decry the insane push for more war, now on full display. And not only in Australia. We know who is leading the charge. The last few years of over-the-top global fear mongering and draconian mandates that rolled in with Covid, have softened up the population for more of the same in service of another antihuman agenda. War has traditionally been the answer to a failing socioeconomic system, and the propaganda is becoming relentless. Things all around get worse and crazier. Will it happen again?
    As Woody Allen famously opined, “More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly.”

  12. Stephen Rosenthal March 15, 2023

    Even though there isn’t a movie among the nominees I have any desire to watch, or more than a handful of actors I recognized, I watched part of the Oscars. I like Jimmy Kimmel, so that was the hook, so to speak. The show quickly descended into an unwatchable waste of time after his meh opening monologue. For whatever reason I suffered through bits and pieces until the disappointing dead people’s tribute and then hit the off button on my remote. Last year’s Oscars were the lowest rated in history; I’m guessing this year’s will decline even further. It’s time to put a fork in this yearly self-aggrandizement to ego, Botox and plastic surgery

  13. Michael Turner MD March 17, 2023

    “THIS PUBLIC LETTER from John Redding seems to have gone un-responded to, but isn’t it significant that a trustee of Coast Health abandons the Adventist complex he oversees?”

    I don’t think what Mr. Redding experienced is the result of mistakes or incompetence. I think it’s intentional. Adventist Health has figured out that the best way for them to succeed in this market is to deliver shitty care. They’d call it something else of course, like “efficiencies of scale”.

Leave a Reply

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