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Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Warming | Ukiah Valley | Pebbles 101 | Insect Repellents | Board Appalling | Albion Bridge | Carol Brown | Brewery Music | Oboe Concert | Unity Club | WoodCharles | Music Books | Choir Concerts | Variety Show | Dog Commentary | Darkroom Course | Huntington Beach | Ed Notes | What's Happening | Lucky Bugs | Expensive Gift | Vacation Rentals | Yesterday's Catch | Retardant Pollution | Oakland Commons | Gadfly | Cat Healing | Marin City | Jack Packed | No Guns | Not Again | Dating 2023 | Delaware Joe | Gas Lines | Big Lies | Edible Flowers | Reform Needed | Schoolday | Ukraine | Survival | Bashful Alley

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A WARMING TREND will occur across Northwest California through mid week, with interior valley high temperatures climbing into the 80s and ranging to the 60s and 70s along the immediate coast. Thereafter, cooler temperatures along with showers and thunderstorms will become more probable this weekend into early next week. (NWS)

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The Ukiah Valley Looking East (photo by Judge Keith Faulder, the only aesthete, so far as is known, presently seated on the Mendocino County Superior Court bench)

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I'm living at Area 101 in Laytonville, my new home. Sold my land on the river. Plan is to go to Mexico June-July for stem cell procedure so I can stay alive while longer. pbz

Pebbles Trippet <>

FRED GARDNER: Just got my print edition with the dire item about Pebbles. Richard Jergensen (of the protopipe team) says she's living with protective friends north of Laytonville and doing well. The property has been disentangled and sold, and Richard is salvaging the part of her archive that survived the humidity at the mouth of the river (including old O'Shaughnessy's and AVAs). She doesn't have a phone yet, is reachable by email. Whew!

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Hello Mendo Coast Members!!

I am appalled by the actions of my fellow board members!! Keeping healthcare on the coast is more important than anyone’s personal agenda. The current Treasurer make our previous one look like an angel! He has repeatedly put forward non compliant reports with his “made up” information. He does not have the skill set to do this role. He refuses to work with me because he says I belittle him. Sorry but telling you that you don’t report the numbers on a cash basis or the liabilities that don’t show on an income statement is stating fact! The current chair continually lets him interrupt me! He has NEVER asked me one question about anything from the last group! He has LIED to the public! He won’t listen to real professional advice. The lawyer they are using is a joke!! I have stayed quiet through a ton of shit over the last few years but it’s time to speak up! This new board does not care what the truth is or the parameters we need to use with public funds. Jade [Tippett] has literally threatened to call the cops to remove a member of the public because he didn’t like what was being said, apparently he has forgotten the First Amendment.

We can not let this continue, we need to figure out how to meet the needs of the entire coast without overspending. Please come to meetings, watch the past Zooms. Let me know if you want more information.


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Albion River Bridge (Jeff Goll)

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Carol Ann Brown (Larsen, Olds) left our physical world with angels Thursday, April 20, 2023. She passed peacefully I her sleep at her home in Fort Bragg. She was 77 years of age. Carol was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma on August 5, 1945 to Clyde and Mary Jane Olds and is survived by her two brothers DuWayne and Rodger Olds. 

Her best friend and sister Kathy passed away September 11, 2016. They had a bond as sisters and friends that leaves a powerful legacy of love for their children and grandchildren. They loved to spend time together and were not only sisters, but truly best friends. Both Carol and Kathy had vivacious personalities and would capture the attention of all who met them during their numerous travels and adventures. Quick wit and humor were their hallmarks in addition to their skilled sewing and quilting. Carol grew up in Loleta, and graduated from Fortuna High School. 

Carol was proceeded in death by her beloved husband Bill Brown. Bill passed away April 10, 2003. She is survived by her three children Christine, Caristine, and Niels. She was a foster mother for Allan Watters and many others for many years. Carol loved being a mother and took great pride in caring for her family. She was a stay home mother and foster mother for most of her adult life. She loved sewing, quilting, and crocheting and gave away her time and talent with a loving and generous spirit. 

Carol made almost all of Christine and Caristine’s clothing growing up. Matching dresses with matching hair bows were her specialty. Her grandchildren Alyse, Alayna, Jacob, Jaclynn, and Nalani were her pride and joy! She loved spending time with them, cooking for them, sewing for them, and loving them. Her great-grandchildren Emmajune, Adam, and Waylon had a very special place in her heart too. She enjoyed hosting family and friends to her home in Alameda through the years. Showing her “country cousins, nieces and nephews” the sights of the Bay Area were wonderful memories for her.

Carol and Bill moved to Fort Bragg from the Bay Area in 1985. They loved living in Fort Bragg. They both were part of community organizations and happily served others. Carol served as a long-time member of the Fort Bragg Grange #672. She enjoyed being in Eastern Star and served as the president of the American Legion Auxiliary Post Unit #96 for many years. She also took local girls on many trips to Girls State where they experienced and learned about civics and government service. 

Carol enjoyed traveling, painting, and loved music. She will be deeply missed until her loved ones see her again in heaven.

Interment was Monday April 24, 2023 at Rose Memorial Park, 760 N. Franklin St., Fort Bragg, CA 94537

A Celebration of life will be held on Saturday, May 13, 2023 at the Veterans Hall, 360 N. Harrison St., Fort Bragg, CA 94537

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BUCKRIDGE RACKET CLUB, AT AV BREWING, Friday, April 28, 5:30-6:30pm. 17700 Boonville Road, Boonville CA.

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Mendocino Presbyterian Church this Sunday, April 30th at 3pm.

Virtuoso Oboist Laura Reynolds will perform the final Opus concert of the 2022-23 season with her many friends. She will start the concert by presenting a collection of solo pieces for Oboe with piano accompaniment. After intermission she will be joined by 10 fellow musicians to make Dvorak Serenade for winds come together in perfect harmony. A fantastic piece of music to end this full season of chamber music performances!

Tickets at:, Out of this World in Mendocino and at Harvest Market in Fort Bragg.

More information at

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by Miriam Martinez

Celebrate cuatro de Mayo with us on Thursday May 4th in the Dining Room; Fairgrounds, at 1:30. After our brief meeting we will indulge in the wild Funny Money Auction. Our hostess duo will provide teas and coffee + sweet and savory treats. Nancy Wood and Miriam Martinez will set the festive mood.

Thank you all so very much for your work and donations for our successful Wildflower Show. A full report will be made by Jean Condon. I hear it was a smashing success. All the plants found new homes. Thank you for your loving care of the propagated plants.

Our Lending Library held a sale during the Wildflower Show. Liz Dusenberry will give her report as well. Library hours are Tuesdays from 1 to 4 and Saturdays from 12:30 to 2:30, whenever the Fairgrounds are not rented out for other events.

Join us for our Annual Funny Money Auction on May 4th at 1:30 in the Dining Room, Fairgrounds.

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On May 5, the Mendocino Coast Jazz Society presents Music First Friday & Music Book Sale. 17 musicians in various stores and locations in Fort Bragg celebrate the opening sale of donated music books from the Hans Bruhner and Anne Bruhner collection. The book sale proceeds, in four locations, will benefit music scholarship and educational programs.

(Katy Tahja)


The story behind bookcases of jazz books in local bookstores in Fort Bragg starts with a love story and ends with a loving tribute, and music and books on May 5th all over downtown Fort Bragg for First Friday Art Walk.

In 1962 Anne Crosby was a young bilingual teacher enjoying her job at the American school in Bogota, Colombia. There she met Hans Bruhner, a European publishing house representative from Stockholm Sweden. It was love at first sight.

The Bruhners lived in Europe before settling in the USA. Hans had many diverse “loves” in his life. First and foremost was family but he had an artistic athletically musical soul. One love was running. He had been an alternate for the Swedish track and field team in the Oslo Olympics and he ran for exercise the rest of his life. Another love was photography and the interplay of color and shadow. But his true love was jazz music.

As a teenager in Stockholm he hung around Embassy Row and the US consulate to meet young American diplomats and hang out with them and learn more about American jazz music. He collected jazz in every way, shape and form, from reel-to-reel tapes, to vinyl records to cassettes and CDs. And don't forget books. He REALLY liked to read about jazz.

Working for Esso Petroleum in Europe in later years, Hans used early computer techenology to perfect the concept of a credit card you could use in a gas station. His in-depth knowledge of this emerging technology got him a job with Chevron Oil and the family moved to California and settled in the Bay Area.

Hans, Anne, daughter Karin and son Hans Jr. liked to camp out and travel the north coast. Happenstance led them to an acquaintance with Peter Allegart, a fine landscape artist in Elk. Enjoying sculpture, Hans started creating what today might be called folk art. With his photographs he created frames for his photos with bits and pieces of artistic materials.

By 1990 the Bruhners were thinking of retirement and they discovered a spot on Docker Hill in Comptche for a new home and a wealth of creative artistic neighbors. Anne finished her teaching career in special education at Fort Bragg Middle School and Hans discovered the Mendocino Coast Jazz Society and the Bruhners hosted many musical gatherings at their ridge top home.

Age catches up with everybody and Hans passed away in 2022 after 60 years with the love of his life, Anne. He left behind a wealth of music and books about the other love of his life: jazz. In a loving tribute Anne works with the jazz society to sell their jazz collection to benefit the group’s scholarship fund. They have already been selling recorded music at gatherings at the Company Store in Fort Bragg and now they have something new!

Today you can go to the Bookstore on Laurel Street or Windsong Books on Main Street in Fort Bragg and buy books provided by the Bruhner family. A portion of the proceeds go for the scholarship fund of the Mendocino Coast Jazz Society. Visit both stores! They are only a block apart. Your purchases will help send a local music student to college.

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by Captain Rainbow

Back in 2020 just as the pandemic was beginning to shut down the country, county, and valley we had planned the 29th annual Variety Show. Could we pull it off? There was so many unknowns, we consulted with doctors and health workers added masks at the door and borrowed a bunch of air purifiers from the school. We cancelled some acts that may have been exposed to the virus. No one was was excluded but we encouraged people to be safe. Some folks didn't come and we totally understood. We, and this means the whole community, pulled it off! We heard of nobody getting the virus from attending. And the next week California shut down. Whew! Dat wuz close.

Now three years later we are at the far end of a very weird period of time don't ya think? The not being able to gather together and enjoy each others company sucks. After all that's what the Variety Show is all about. Well, boy howdy it's time. BUT with some considerations. We want everyone to feel safe, if you wish, bring a mask, (hopefully colorful), but not a requirement, and masks will be available at the door, as well as hand sanitizers in the bathrooms, windows open, air purifiers on in the hall. OK?

Darn, we can't call it the Annual Variety Show anymore. Putting this together has been like reinventing the wheel, but pieces are falling into place and the buzz is building. Very last chance to confirm your act! Where IS that Llama act anyway?

Here's a rundown on the ticket situation. Pre-sale tickets will be on sale at AV Market in Boonville and Lemons Market in Philo beginning Monday May 1rst. Tickets will be available at the door each night as well, (we hold back 100 for the door each night). The show won"t be sold out until every ticket is sold, so come early. We've kept them cheap $10.00 adults, under 12 $5.00. We Hope that those who can afford it will donate more. Checks can be made to AV Grange. 

Of course all the performers get in free, and to guarantee their families and friends can get in — at the tech rehearsal on Friday and Saturday, May 5 and 6, performers will be able to buy tickets, bring cash or check. We only print enough tickets for the capacity of the building and we account for the staff working there as well. If you got a ticket your gonna get in.

Plan on it people, be there, It's a show for everyone.

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RE THE PIT BULL MAULING IN FORT BRAGG, an on-line comment: Here is the issue human or dog. These days nobody knows when the script is going to be flipped. Look at the horrible crimes that humans have been doing to each other lately. Then add the dogs that were raised by these horrible humans. How can you expect anything less. People who defend their ‘sensitive’ dogs because they’re ‘misunderstood’ or somebody didn’t know them so I took them because everything scares them. Quick to bite and or attack/kill frequently. Cat killing dogs. Chicken killing. Goat killing. Rehomed to a place with no animals but KIDS are there. There’s a lot of people who hide these kinds of dogs for years until something like this happens. An ‘emotional’ support dog should not need to be ‘emotionally’ supported by a human.

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SUMMER DARKROOM COURSE at Mendocino College Coast Center. 1211 Del Mar Dr, Fort Bragg, CA 95437, (707) 961-2200. Registration for the summer session of Film Photography for Older Adults is now open. As in the past, all ages and experience levels are welcome. Note: easiest to sign up in person. The course runs from June 12th to August 2nd, Monday / Tuesday / Wednesday, 1 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. During this repeatable, eight-week course, over 80 hours of analog darkroom time will be available to you for only $12. Contact instructor Markus Pfitzner with any questions:

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View of the Standard service station in Huntington Beach. A large oil field is seen in the background. (ca. 1937)

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THE VENERABLE ERNIE BRANSCOMB, of Southern Humboldt, nicely expresses my opinion of media matters, and also mirrors my opinions of lots of stuff. Maybe it's because we both remember the country before The Fall which, in my opinion, occurred in 1967 when a kind of cosmic shift in previously consensus assumptions forever ruptured.

MR. BRANSCOMB: “As an outside observer to most issues it is easy to determine which ‘hat’ a journalist wears. I find it comical that they think they are being objective. I’ve always thought that rather than trying to hide their true feelings a reporter should just say how they feel or believe, and let a reporter from the other side of an issue make their point. Compare a CNN journalist to a FOX journalist then tell me about objectivity. The average reader is smarter than you might think. Yes, I watch both channels and find incredible dishonesty on both channels and extreme bias in most mainstream media. Why not forget about ‘journalism’ and just tell the truth.”

AGREE TOTALLY that our media underestimates its audiences. The English are more sophisticated about media, probably because their media don't bother with the naive assumption that there is such a mystic, above-it-all remove as “objectivity.” The Brits know that some media are conservative, some are liberal, a couple actually leftwing. (The English and Europeans generally know the diff between the ism's, having lived the real thing. Here in Objectivity Land, the notion has somehow taken hold that media aren't first of all businesses, businesses that craft their news to suit certain demographics, hence CNN and MSNBC, for instance, are aimed at Democratic Party libs whose magical thinking allows them to believe that the DNC and their candidates represent the path forward, a national pipe dream of sea-to-sea hugs. The Fox News combine is aimed at people who at least understand that the country has run, probably irretrievably, off the rails but, of course, Fox tells them that crypto-fascists like Trump will make everything like it was in 1955. I'd say BBC America is about as “objective” a news take on U.S. events that is out there in television news. 

TODAY, MONDAY THE 24TH OF APRIL was a great media day with the news that the odious Tucker Carlson has been fired by Fox News, after reigning over the network as one of its most beloved hosts for nearly a decade. “FOX News Media and Tucker Carlson have agreed to part ways. We thank him for his service to the network as a host and prior to that as a contributor. Mr. Carlson's last program was Friday April 21st,” the network statement read. An interim roster of hosts will take over in his absence until a permanent replacement is chosen.

PREDICTION; Carlson will quickly sign with NewsMax, which is even farther to the deluded right than Fox. (Here's hoping Fox axes Hannity, too.)

AND IT WAS positively uplifting that the oleaginous Don Lemon was axed by CNN after 17 years of faking that he's a warm, wonderful guy. In a statement posted to Twitter, Lemon wrote: “I was informed this morning by my agent that I have been terminated by CNN. I am stunned. After 17 years at CNN I would have thought someone in management would have had the decency to tell me directly.”

THE CACKLING HAGS on The View were positively giddy with joy at the Carlson firing, which I happen to know because my wife told me. She's a fan of The View and jumps my bones whenever I wander past and comment on how awful that show is.

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by Tommy Wayne Kramer

We returned to Ukiah for a limited time but long enough for me to fret over my missing Swallowtail butterflies. 

For the past 20 uninterrupted summers wife Trophy and I have been quietly thrilled at a pair of backyard Swallowtails dancing, dashing, playing tag, disappearing for minutes at a time before doodling back onstage for up and down spiraling pirouettes. So kewl. 

We marveled every year, and every year we asked each other if it could possibly be the same duo summer after summer. It’s improbable a pair of 20-year old butterflies lives in our back yard, but equally unlikely two new ones arrive every spring and decide to make our yard their home. 

No matter. They’re gone. Maybe it’s the weather or maybe they’ve drifted off, brokenhearted, because they think I left them for good. 

It’s possible you know. They might actually think that. You can never tell. 

Now we live part-time in southern North Carolina, where few butterflies frequent our yard. Our half-acre has birds: Cardinals, sparrows, mockingbirds, robins and some others. 

We also have other wildlife in abundance in the south, and bugs is one of them. We’re strong on chiggers and have an enviable mosquito population. 

A month or two ago I noticed some bugs on an upstairs ceiling. One here, another over there, a few more in a corner. 

I was about to get the Raid can to fumigate the entire neighborhood when I realized it was just a few Ladybugs. Except for the “just a few” part. 

Closer inspection, as in actually looking around the room, showed an awful lot of Ladybugs. Singles and pairs, dozens and scores of Ladybugs were roaming about. 

A few were truckin’ up the walls, others were soloing on window frames, and one dark knot of unmoving Ladybugs clustered in a hive-like ceiling lump. 

Neighbors told me, and the internet agreed, that Ladybugs in the home are harbingers of good luck. I thought about buying a lottery ticket but feared if I didn’t win a bunch of money I’d go fetch the Raid can and teach them a lesson. 


Don’t Play Ball

Major League baseball started recently and for all I know the All Star break is next week. I’m not interested in the season and wouldn’t attend the All Star game if played at Anton Stadium. 

I did 70 years devoted to the Cleveland Indians before being put on waivers, unconditionally released and no longer welcome at Progressive (what else?) Field by the board of directors of the Cleveland Baseball Organization, Inc. 

My bet is none of the members of the board of directors of the Cleveland Baseball Organization, Inc., (A) grew up in Cleveland, or (B) are baseball fans. 

So I’m O-U-T out!! at home, along with Chief Wahoo and the team name. Now they are called, weirdly enough, the Guardians, which I think is an undergarment for old guys, a diaper reinforced with extra-strength webbing to hold large loads and up to a quart of liquid. 

Hope the Cleveland team loses every game, 50-0, and that average daily attendance in 2023 is no more than a dozen or so politically correct fans. 

And in 2024 the team moves to Berkeley. 

Theater Gets Facelift

Two thumbs up, as movie critics used to say, for the spiff job on the old and beautiful Ukiah Movie Theater. 

Colors are both contemporary and perfectly retro; exterior signage promises audio and visual improvements too. I’d like to see the interior, and I will someday, but darned if the movies brought to our screen aren’t mostly loud and frightening. 

Related note: It’s been nearly three weeks since I’ve heard a single thing about a new Star Wars episode. Hope everyone is OK. 

They Musta Been High

Now let’s have J Holden take control of the keyboard the rest of the way: 

“At 30,000 feet on a flight back from San Diego on my birthday I arranged to have the flight attendant announce ‘May I have your attention please. James Holden in Seat 11F has an important question for Deborah Moore in Seat 11E: Will you marry me?’ 

”If your answer is ‘Yes’ press the flight attendant button.”

“She did and the 200 passengers erupted in applause and cheers, and we were served champagne and chocolate.” 

(My friend Kip and I immediately organized a bachelor party for J. We’ve reserved adjacent rooms at the Motel 6 on South State Street, secured a brick of Peruvian cocaine, a case of Rebel Yell Bourbon from the Carolinas, and half a dozen of Albion’s best-looking hookers.) 

Kip and I will be unable to attend. Deepest regrets. 

Best to the lucky happy couple! Send them expensive gifts!

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MIKE GENIELLA SUGGESTS that Mendo supervisors note this: 

Susan Gorin:

I thank my colleagues on the [Sonoma County] Board of Supervisors to support changes in the vacation rental regulations and rules for timeshares. 

SANTA ROSA, CA – The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors today voted to change vacation rental regulations, create caps and exclusion zones for vacation rentals and to define fractionally owned housing as timeshares. The first action involved creating a business license program that standardizes operating requirements for vacation rentals to protect neighbors from nuisances, while the second action placed caps and exclusion zones in specific neighborhoods in the first, fourth and fifth supervisorial districts to reduce over-concentration of vacation rentals in these areas. A third vote in the afternoon amended zoning code to clarify regulations for timeshares and short-term use of fractionally owned residential properties.

The business license program will establish standards that:

Limit vacation rental occupancy based on number of bedroom or septic capacity, with a maximum occupancy of 12 guests regardless of the size of the home.

Establish standards for parking areas and limit use of on-street parking to a single space.

Establish limits for noise and light.

Require a written evacuation plan and require evacuation whenever a warning is issued.

Require complaints to be resolved within 30 minutes in the evening and within one hour during the day.

Require vacation rental properties to meet requirements for defensible space.

Prohibit outdoor burning of solid fuel.

Require notifying neighbors when the annual Vacation Rental License is renewed.

Limit licenses to one per person and limits ownership to natural persons or family trusts – no LLC or corporate ownership.

When combined with the complaint hotline that Permit Sonoma launched last year, the license program provides additional enforcement tools that will expedite enforcement and allow proportional measures to be applied to violations.

With a Vacation Rentals Moratorium due to expire on May 9, the Board of Supervisors voted to expedite rezoning to place caps and exclusion zones on neighborhoods with high concentrations of vacation rentals.

Communities with new caps placed on the number of vacation rental permits include Fitch Mountain outside of Healdsburg, Hughes Chicken Colony near Sonoma and Austin Creek near Guernewood, among others. 

For more information, including an interactive map showing where zoning changes were voted upon, go to the Vacation Rental Program webpage.

“With these new regulations and the cap and exclusion zones, we’re taking steps to mitigate the impacts of short-term rentals upon neighborhoods adversely affected by vacation rentals in Sonoma County,” said Supervisor Chris Coursey, chair of the Board of Supervisors.

After today’s vote, this item will return for a second reading before the board, and if approved, would go into effect 30 days later.

The neighborhood caps, and whether other communities not mapped in 2020 should have caps, will be reexamined starting in late summer 2023.

Community outreach meetings will be scheduled countywide starting with meetings in Guerneville, Monte Rio and Forestville, which are planned for July and August. At these meetings, Permit Sonoma will gather feedback at the neighborhood level and tailor restrictions to individual neighborhoods. Feedback from those meetings will help Permit Sonoma determine if restrictions should be changed further.

In the afternoon, the board also voted to define the short-term use of a fractionally owned residence as a timeshare use, which is only allowed within the recreation and visitor serving ("K") zoning district, preserving housing for long-term residents and limiting commercial, visitor-serving land uses in residential areas.

“It’s important to note that we’re not banning timeshares,” said Coursey. “We’re recognizing them as commercial enterprises.” 

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Monday, April 24, 2023

Carlson, Gitchel, Kovatch, Phillips

MICHAEL CARLSON, Covelo. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

ANDREW GITCHEL, Willits. Grand theft, conspiracy.

MARK KOVATCH, Ukiah. DUI-alcohol&drugs.

CLIFTON PHILLIPS, Covelo. Domestic battery. 

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A legal dispute in Montana could drastically curb the government’s use of aerial fire retardant to combat wildfires after environmentalists raised concerns about waterways that are being polluted with the potentially toxic red slurry that’s dropped from aircraft.…

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Oakland is clearing out what was once the city’s largest unhoused community.

by David Bacon

On Monday, April 10, metal-jawed earth movers began piling the belongings and refuse of 60 unhoused Oakland residents into garbage trucks. Their encampment, called Wood Street Commons, had grown to occupy two city blocks since 2013. Spaced across the area were tents, RVs, trailers and even a small, two-story plywood house. Wood Street Commons is the last remnant of what was once the largest unhoused encampment in Northern California, which once stretched for more than 25 city blocks.…

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by Paul Modic

When I turned sixty-five recently and retired I became a social media gadfly, going from one issue to another, and by the time I turned sixty-six I had started brushfires online which grew into nothing, ie, wherever I fought power power always won, I got some attention along the way with my poison pen (“keyboard warrior”), pissed off a lot of people, and maybe made a few friends as I crusaded against the policies of the Credit Union, John Ford, and KMUD. (Well, they started it!)

It all began when I was looking at Kym Kemp’s news site, RedHeadedBlackBelt, while up in Tacoma on Mom Duty and I read about our local credit union (CU) expansion and name change. Coincidentally my sister also read it, contacted one of the board members, while I contacted her husband, and we were pretty much saying in unison, “What the fuck? ‘Vocality?’ How could you disgrace Community Credit Union of Southern Humboldt with that terrible name?”

The board member and her husband thought my sister and I were coordinating our shock and protest but we had no idea the other was equally upset, the most upset of anyone in Southern Humboldt, and we decided to do something about it.

I posted fiery protest prose, met with the director of the credit union, and began to meet with a few other dissidents. Meanwhile my sister took it to the streets, made a loud scene in the bank lobby, and marched through an outdoor celebration with her protest sign, a one-woman front line and call to action. (I still regret missing her act that night as I was late getting to the credit union event, couldn’t find it just around the corner, and by then she had left.)

We met in my usual spot for interviews, the window table above “Calico’s,” and plotted the takeover of the board. We had gained access to a CU mailing list and I was tracking all the people who had supported the protest online, there seemed to be a lot of people who detested the deception, and how the changes had been made with no membership input.

We began to show up at CU public meetings to express our resistance to these changes made secretly and a couple times I lost it and called out the board members fervently.

What made us so upset and radicalized? Was it the Retired Gadfly Effect (RGE), i.e., finding something we could give a shit about, too much time on our hands, some kind of leader/hero mentality, an urge to keep things like they’ve been, ie, “Get Off My Lawn-ism”?

At our meetings we plotted out our strategy, just a few of us, and I realized we could do it, take over the credit union with people power, but then at the peak of confidence I realized that that would be my life then, running a bank, and was that what I wanted to do? With a resounding “No!” I dropped out of the protest and then everyone else did also.

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Next came the abatement wars in Humboldt County and I decided (more extreme “Gadfly-ism”) to submit a ballot measure to make it legal for anyone to have a 600 foot greenhouse on any size land and no limit on the size of the six legal pot plants the new state law, Proposition 64, allowed. I went back on to the local Fb discussion page and got a lot of input from others interested in the issue.

I wrote the measure, with others’ suggestions, submitted it to the county, and it was soon rejected as illegal by the county counsel, who said it conflicted with state law. I was invited onto Ed Denson’s radio show where he interviewed me about the ballot measure. He said I was his hero, which was pretty funny as Ed is usually our local hero, because he was impressed that I actually did it, submitted the measure with the $250 filing fee, and showed what just one person could do.

I didn’t seek any more publicity because it was submitted late in the game, I knew it had little chance of getting the thousands of signatures necessary to qualify, and so I didn’t want to spread the bullshit too deeply. I was Ed’s hero for a day, or maybe an hour, or fifteen minutes, and that would have to be it. (Ed’s sidekick Nikki also said I was amazing, in that sexy voice of hers.)

Once the measure was submitted our district supervisor Estelle Fennell called me, said she was talking to Planning Director John Ford and her fellow supervisor Madrone, and I would get everything I asked for and therefore there was no need to continue with the ballet measure. Like a naive fool I believed her, though others told me it was just another lying politician saying what I wanted to hear, and that was the truth.

When the measure was initially rejected I got Ed to write a response saying it wasn’t a violation of state law as the county counsel had stated but we were right up against the deadline by then and I knew it was time to back down, I’d maybe made my point. But I was stuck, I didn’t know how to formally withdraw the ballot measure, called Ed and asked for his advice, and he withdrew it for me.

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Next came KMUD... 

I had always thought that a way to break into local community radio would be to record some All Sides Now opinion pieces, the two-minute feature open to everyone, which is supposed to run after the news every night, and who knows, maybe I could become the next “Travis T. Hip?”

The people recording ASN opinions were mostly a few angry White men with political agendas (love Trump/ hate Trump), it was repetitive, predictable, and boring, and I saw an opportunity to record and air something interesting, entertaining, intelligent, and hopefully funny to increase the quality.

I decided to write and record one ASN a week for a month and see how it felt. I submitted the first one, about the virus, local spy satellites, and a lefty/righty, Don Sack vs Jake Pickering imaginary smackdown, and they didn't play it.

I recorded another one, it wasn't played either and when I asked the public affairs director why they weren't being played she said, “You can't do a mini-show!”

To which I responded, “Why not? Why can't I say whatever I want?” (Well, that’s how it used to be, but somewhere along the way KMUD had gone from Rebel Radio to Weenie Radio.)

After a month of not getting my editorials played, and staying cool, I started writing letters to the board and management protesting the censorship and asking them to please tell me why my pieces were not being aired. The board never answered any of my letters or questions, which included:

Why is playing All Sides Now not a priority for the station?

Why is ASN not encouraged by the station?

If an ASN comes in and it is rejected by being termed “inappropriate” then why doesn't KMUD notify the caller that their piece is not going to be played?

Why doesn't KMUD tell the caller why the piece won't be played?

Why should one unqualified guy, Rob Bier, be in charge of censoring All Sides Now for the whole community?

Why are provocative and opinionated ASN recordings deleted but “feel good” pieces are played?

Having censored/deleted eleven out of the fifteen I recorded, in retrospect what would have been the harm in playing them?

After months of increasingly bitter letter-writing suggesting I'd go to the media, the FCC, the courts, and finally threatening to stand in front of the station with a sign saying “Boycott KMUD,” the station manager finally told me why they weren't playing my pieces: “Because they are disparaging and inflammatory.” (Awww, they do get me, and what's wrong with being disparaging and inflammatory, and who exactly is being disparaged and inflamed? No answers, as usual.)

Turns out KMUD has these unwritten rules: They won't play your opinion if they don't like the subject, tone, choice of words, or you. And when they do play it, it might be days letter, or usually never, and they don't tell why not, just give you the Millennial Brushoff: no communication, censorship, and fear of trying anything new.

All I wanted was to do an uncensored two minute editorial on the radio and now I found myself banned from KMUD: not allowed to have or apply for a show, not allowed to call in to a show, threatened against running for the board, deemed not “a member in good standing,” and not allowed on the premises.

I had attended the founding meeting in the mid-eighties, been a supporter and listener for decades, and was so discouraged and turned off that I stopped listening to the station. 

I really didn’t think that a nobody could be canceled.

(I have to admit that the whole “gadfly gig” was a big waste of time and energy.)

* * *

Lost Causes

Who's that patron saint of lost causes again?

I'm rackin' 'em up and then pressing send

Credit union, KMUD, or slippery John Ford

Pushing back at the arrogant elected boards

The funny thing is I think I can win!

Hope and delusion are powerful twins

* * *

* * *


Kabuki Moves at “Big Pink”; Shadow Plays in Local Media

by Eva Chrysanthe

On March 21, 2023, the second of three atmospheric rivers in three weeks assailed the creaky structure that is Frank Lloyd Wright’s Marin Civic Center, eventually knocking out the power. But for the time that the electricity still flickered behind the gold-anodized front entrances of the pink-and-turquoise Civic Center – part of a complex that includes the County’s deadly, subterranean jail – the all-white Board of Supervisors deliberated.

The biggest issue on that day’s agenda had been held over from the prior week, due to an earlier storm-related power outage. (If there was a generator, no one seemed inclined to use it.) At issue was a bond issue for a five-story, 74-unit apartment building in historically Black Marin City. Still unincorporated, Marin City remains hidden at the edge of the 101 freeway, its diverse population living in nervous relationship to the County itself, which was rated last year as the “most racially disparate” county in the State of California.

“Racially disparate” is a coy way of saying that Marin is the most racially segregated county in the state, a county where, for the last three decades, Black individuals could rely on being arrested and referred to prosecution at an average rate over eight times their demographic presence in the county. This may explain why the population of Marin City – which was majority Black when Reagan’s anti-Rumford Proposition 14 passed in California in 1964 – is now barely 26% Black.

There are many factors at play in this diminishing of the Black population of Marin City. Recently, the County government has taken to discussing the legacy of the racially restrictive covenants, which first trapped Black residents in Marin City in the postwar era, preventing their families from building wealth through home ownership.

But rarely will the County acknowledge the role that the so-called “War on Drugs” played in breaking up Black families in Marin City through long incarceration for minor possession of the same drugs that were consumed in Marin’s wealthier, white communities with barely any prosecution. To talk about that would require criticizing the County’s Sheriff and District Attorney, and so the County is engaged instead in promoting an impressive mapping project that traces, however incompletely, the history of the racial covenants.

And now, despite the storm’s 80-mile-an-hour gusts, which shook the windows and howled through the wide-corridored streets below, a large contingent of Marin City residents and their allies, many of them elderly, arrived in person at the Supervisors’ chambers to plead with the Board not to approve the bond issue. In voices both calm and powerful, they presented their reasons clearly. There was criticism of the design, of the process, of safety, and of the developer’s casual failure even to provide basic information about the project at a $40 million bond hearing.

The bond issue was expected to pass, supposedly on the premise of Senate Bill 35, which exempts unincorporated Marin from local zoning laws and from review by the Board of Supervisors. But Marin City had so often been on the chopping block at the insistence of the Board of Supervisors, it had been through so many iterations of gentrification and rip-offs over the decades, that SB 35 seemed to have little enough to do with it, except as a goad for well-meaning white homeowners (some who were connected to real estate fortunes themselves) to suddenly find common cause with Marin City residents, whom they had long held at considerable distance.

But on the most simple and urgent level, only one thing really mattered to the people who had the most to lose. The new building, which claimed to be affordable based on the County’s extremely high “area median income”, would not be affordable at all to the vast majority of residents of Golden Gate Village, which is Marin City’s primary public housing structure. Golden Gate Village (GGV), has suffered nearly six decades of neglect by its landlord, the County of Marin, and thus requires massive renovations that are already projected to result in severe displacement.

To write anything about Marin City is to damn yourself to playing an endless game of catch-up. Its history is so dizzyingly circuitous compared to the rest of the County that it calls to mind Byron’s claim, “truth is always strange; Stranger than fiction.” There are new, fabulously wealthy white homeowners in Marin County who barely know that Marin City exists, nor are they aware of the WWII-era shipbuilding that birthed it, or the vicious treatment the Black residents received at the hands of the County over every decade of its existence.

And there are younger Black residents of Marin City who have only known the existing public housing project, and for whom GGV is, despite its hardship, truly home because it maintains necessary community in a County that remains openly hostile to them. For those residents, an environmentally sound renovation plan they had carefully crafted with experts from around the country had been the desired goal. But the County had rejected that plan late last year, and now it seemed clear that, with or without cause, the County would approve the bond issue, and the gentrifying 825 Drake building was inevitable.

And yet the residents and their allies had come to try to stop 825 Drake, drawing on faith, determination, and necessity. The meeting was notable not only for the size of the bond and the project, but for the unusually strong statements from certain longtime community leaders whose language had for so long, perhaps too long, been as tempered and moderate as possible. And for two newer Black voices in Marin, whose comments were totally ignored by local media.

* * *

The meeting was reported in two local papers, the conservative Marin Independent-Journal, which is majority-owned by the infamous Alden Capital, and The Pacific Sun, which feints toward a more liberal posture.

As is typical of the Marin IJ, the residents of Marin City were depicted by reporter Richard Halstead as a group of clueless exaggerators. The moving, eloquent, nearly four-minute speech by Pastor Leggett was reduced to a single, volatile word that Halstead found amusing. Similarly, a sobering and very evocative comment by a white longtime ally, who grew up in the Mississippi Delta in the 1950s and who now lives in Sausalito, was reduced to her use of the term “white supremacist.”

But regarding the rationale behind the vote, Halstead’s reporting was more straightforward than the coverage in The Pacific Sun. Whereas Halstead provided an accurate account of the neutral advice rendered by County Counsel Brian Washington, The Pacific Sun’s Nikki Silverstein depicted Brian Washington’s counsel not only as non-neutral, but as having somehow had the power to sway three of the Supervisors toward their majority vote approving the bond.

It’s important to note that Silverstein’s description was a significant distortion. The County’s Office of Legal Counsel, with Brian Washington as its head, serves at the discretion of the five elected supervisors. These five Supervisors are Counsel Washington’s collective client, whose needs and desires he, as County Counsel, must serve, and not the other way around. And in the end, the Board’s 3-2 vote to approve the bond, with only Supervisor Eric Lucan and Board President Stephanie Moulton-Peters voting against approval of the bond, made more than clear that the Board was free to interpret Washington’s counsel any way they chose to.

By way of contrast, Silverstein’s article described the tepid speech of Board President Stephanie Moulton-Peters as "fiery" without a single note of irony; Moulton-Peters’ speech might only be considered fiery in the coldest reaches of the Arctic. (During one earlier board meeting, Moulton-Peters uncharacteristically attempted to cry in order to convey that she was distressed about an issue, and the tears carried with them all the sincerity of a barely regretful alligator caught swallowing someone’s chihuahua.)

As the President of the Board of Supervisors from one of the County’s most powerful districts, Moulton-Peters holds considerable leverage over the rest of the board; she had plenty of time to sway their votes, which she declined to do. To call the 3-2 vote “kabuki theater” was probably unfair to the richness of that mode of Japanese theatre; but true enough that the mixed vote seemed staged to buffer criticism of the Board as a whole.

Silverstein’s racial biases are often unsubtle, such as when she mocked an Asian-American elected representative in Marin as a “child” after he had to pursue a restraining order against a notoriously racist white Marinwood resident who had repeatedly threatened him. (The request for the restraining order came on the heels of many decades of white violence against Asian-American residents in Marin County, and it is no surprise that the Asian-American elected rep, a young father, subsequently moved out of the County and the State.)

So it was perhaps predictable that Silverstein depicted the Black County Counsel as the villain and the WASP-y President of the Board of Supervisors as the “fiery” defender of Marin City. Silverstein has long been part of a pattern of white women in the County who deflect blame away from their favored white supervisors and officials and onto more vulnerable parties. We had seen this before when many of the white women “allies” had repeatedly attacked former MHA Director Lewis Jordan, who is Black, even though Jordan, like Washington, acted at the behest of the all-white Board of Supervisors, the same supervisors whom many of these same white allies kept endorsing and funding.

But there was something else that both newspapers ignored in this story, and that is the developer’s own legal woes and other entanglements, which are easily researched. Why omit that? Perhaps because exhuming the actual history of the developer would provide ammunition for Marin City residents to challenge the Board. Instead, Halstead provided a dry recount of the developer’s position, and Silverstein elicited some headline-grabbing, offensive quotes by the developer’s representative. The effect of the offensive quotes was simply to transfer that representative to another project, a move that Moulton-Peters later tried to depict as a win for Marin City, even though nothing had changed.

* * *

As significantly, neither the IJ nor The Pacific Sun reported the arguments put forward by a Black retired law commissioner who lives in Marin City, and by a young Black attorney from a prominent firm in San Francisco. Perhaps the difficulty in reporting their arguments (particularly the younger attorney’s), is that doing so would have made it difficult to portray the vote as somehow inevitable. Neither of these individuals are from Marin, though both currently reside in Marin, and it is hard not to consider that their time outside the County offered them a perspective that the County as a whole has tried to quash.

Marilyn Mackel, the retired law commissioner, had previously been instrumental in patiently pushing forward a complaint which resulted in a historic 2019 school desegregation order issued by California’s Attorney General against the Sausalito Marin City School District, a struggle that was routinely misreported by the Marin IJ’s Keri Brenner, and entirely ignored by The Pacific Sun. (A search of the Pacific Sun’s website and on Google turns up only one reference to the 2019 desegregation order. The order appears only in a single sentence in one 2022 article, despite the fact that the desegregation order was preceded by a years-long struggle.)

During school board meetings, Ms. Mackel had almost always spoken with great restraint, despite her deep commitment to pursuing investigation. But on this day, the emotional tenor of her voice was unmuted as she implored the Board of Supervisors to recognize the impact that the 825 Drake project would have on Marin City – already the most diverse and most populated part of a county that is otherwise marked by vast open space:

“Today you can vote to reject this bond. You don’t have to do it. It has no benefit to you except it adds to your numbers – numbers that you’ve been unable to fulfill because you’ve been under restriction until December ’22 from building anything in Marin City or the Canal of affordable nature.”

But what did Mackel mean when she said the Board didn’t have to do it?

Attorney Philip Feffer fleshed out as much of a detailed legal argument as could be done in his allotted few minutes, citing the County’s staff report which, he said, seemed to offer SB35 “as an excuse suggesting the decision is out of the county’s hands.” But Feffer made clear: “the action considered by this board today is not the sort of development approval subject to SB 35.”

Mr. Feffer, a young father with a demanding caseload, had made the time to call in during a break. He had prepared his remarks carefully, and had to speak rapidly, no extra time was given him:

“The action being considered is whether or not to authorize the issuance of $40 million of tax-exempt bonds to finance the project. Given that there’s barely any mention of the considerations and reasons (for why) the County is in favor of approval of the bonds – there is just a note that approval is recommended to support the developer – there is an appearance of trying to avoid acknowledgement of the very real and still discretionary role that the County has.”

Mr. Feffer then emphasized: “California law does not require that the County approve issuance of bonds such as these, not under SB35 or any other streamlined approval process.”

Racing the clock, Feffer continued: “The IRS code also does not require that the County approve this issuance. The staff report notes that the code requires that the board holds a public hearing on the issuance of the bonds, and adopt a resolution on approving the bond issuance. But to be clear, the IRS code doesn’t require the board to approve the issuance.”

This was no small point. Feffer went on, “There’s nothing in Section 4 or anywhere else in the 2004 Joint Exercise of Powers Agreement limiting the county’s discretion and approving the issuance of the bonds, and the county is not required to approve this bond issuance.”

Feffer’s comments weren’t appreciated by a Board that had already made its decisions through the same cold calculus that somehow always determined Marin’s remaining Black community wasn’t worth protecting.

But Feffer ran up to the full allotted time to finish: “If (the County) does so in light of the strong objections voiced by the Marin City Community, it should be clear that the board is actively choosing to do so; it’s completely free to simply vote no and reject this financing today – its hands are not tied.

Perhaps Feffer’s comments were not considered by either the Marin IJ or The Pacific Sun to be newsworthy because they were too newsworthy: in legal terms they dismantled the claim of the three supervisors who said they had no choice but to approve the bond.

But there could be another reason Feffer was ignored by local media. The politics of this young Black attorney are reminiscent of an earlier, more progressive era in Marin County that began to take root as early as the 1950s when, just across the Golden Gate Bridge, there was a strong labor movement that would eventually build a sizable Black middle class. If, in the postwar era, the deck was stacked against Black residents of Marin and the larger Bay Area, there was a powerful racially integrating union that managed to produce a contingent of Black homeowners – and Black politicians who made it onto the national stage.

At least one member of that larger labor movement, Bruce Risley, lived in Marin City in the 1950s, and found common cause with Black pastors and residents. That shared history is one that white neoliberal Marinites, and their ultimately conservative local media, would rather we forget. In fact, one of those neoliberal Marinites, attorney Allan Berland, who had represented a previous developer who ripped off Marin City back in the early 1960s, called me in early February and said repeatedly:

“Forget about the Risley letter!”

But the Risley letter, once read, was impossible to forget.

Next in Part II: What Bruce Risley’s Letter Tells Us About Black Marin City’s Potential Land Claim

* * *

Jack Hits The Road

* * *


To the Editor:

Last spring, I was traveling with my Irish friend in rural Ireland. We were on a road trip and could not find a waterfall we were looking for. My friend saw a house in the distance and said, “Hold on, I’m going to stop and ask for directions.”

I was concerned and surprised that she didn’t hesitate to walk up a long driveway, ring the doorbell and ask a stranger for directions. 

Ten minutes later my friend was still talking to the man who answered the door. As we drove off, he waved to us.

I explained my response to my friend, and she looked at me and said, “Denise, we don’t have guns here.”

Denise Garone

San Francisco

* * *

MEGAN MCCAIN: Joe versus Donald: It's the re-match no one wants. On Tuesday, Biden is expected to announce that — despite suggesting in 2019 that he'd be a one-term president — he's throwing his aviators back in the ring for 2024. And in one of the most comical buzzkills in political history, a new poll shows that a super majority of Americans think that's an absolutely terrible idea. 70% of Americans, including 51% of Democrats, don't want him to do it, according to an NBC News survey. Wait, it gets worse, hysterically worse. 53% of those who voted for Biden less than three years ago in 2020 say he shouldn't run. And 76% of voters under 35 believe it's time for Joe to retire. Why? Well, it's no huge surprise. ‘It's all about his age and his ability to do the job,’ reported ‘Meet The Press’ host Chuck Todd, who was stunned by the poll results this Sunday. So, how does the Democratic Party justify propping up grandpa for another four years, if the very thought of another Biden-Harris ticket makes voters retch? The answer is cynicism. Pure unadulterated cynicism.

* * *

* * *


by Ralph Nader

In early March 2023, President Joe Biden embedded in his proposed 2024 budget to Congress revenue increases through tax measures that the rich and corporations do not like. Like his predecessors Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, he doesn’t really mean what he says.

Biden’s four proposed increases are significant because they would restore the corporate tax rate to 28% from Trump’s decrease to 21% in 2017, raise the top rate for income above $400,000 a year from 37% to 39.6%, raise the 1% excise tax on massive stock buybacks to 4% and get rid of the gaping super-rich private fund managers’ “carried interest” loophole, so as to tax such income at ordinary rates.

He even tossed in a proposal to tax capital gains at the same rate as income for households with more than one million dollars in annual income.

The restorative taxes on these affluent tax escapees, compliments of Donald Trump, George W. Bush and Congressional Republicans, are little more than a wink to the major donors that Biden is summoning to Washington the weekend after next to grease his re-election campaign.

Here are my suggestions to President Biden:

Mr. President: Like other Democrats’ verbal support for a $15 federal minimum wage and a public option added to Obamacare, the citizenry doesn’t believe you are going to fight for your proposed corporate super-rich tax proposals. Why should they? Your words on Capitol Hill are insufficient without the subsequent presidential and Democratic Party muscle to make these restorative increases credible.

For example, where is your presidential tour publicizing these necessary revenue increases? If you are really “Scranton Joe” you could start by going to Scranton, Pennsylvania and standing with blue-collar union workers to show the contrast in their federal tax rates compared to the plutocrats and the often zero-paying giant corporations. You could jar the sleepy Democratic National Committee to galvanize all Democratic members of Congress to barnstorm their districts to promote these overdue reforms during their numerous “recesses” back home.

You could make a major primetime address about redressing these deeply felt inequities, shouldered by liberal and conservative Americans alike, and urge your party to hold press conferences filled with examples and images that demonstrate serious resolve to make Capitol Hill shake from the electrified pressure back home.

Leading newspapers would print your op-eds on this subject. NPR, PBS and the Sunday talk shows would want to interview leading Democrats.

Join with leading citizen advocacy groups to tap into the civic community, so long skeptical of Democratic Party rhetoric not producing determined actions.

You can reject prejudged defeatism by your Democratic colleagues who say the corrupt and cruel Republicans have the votes to block such legislation. The Democratic-controlled Senate Committees can hold powerful attention-getting public hearings. If the Democrats had really championed tax justice, the GOP might not have taken the House of Representatives in the last election. (See:

The benefits of generating real muscle would serve as a contrast to the Republicans’ just-released 300-page sadistic assault on the well-being of all Americans, misleadingly titled the “Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023.” This legislation is an historic and shameful example of Congressional Republicans’ beholdenness to crass corporatism.

Don’t add to the pile of throwaway reformist lines. You need inspiring words to show the people that you are “Scranton Joe” and not “Delaware Joe” – from the notorious corporate state of weak laws relating to corporate power. (You might remember that in 1973 we published a book titled The Corporate State about DuPont’s enormous power over Delaware. DuPont then owned the two major newspapers in Wilmington and provided charitable contributions that were a fraction of its state and local tax concessions.)

A good start is to tell your visiting big donors that in their patriotic service to America, what is urgently needed is productive, paid-for public budgets. It is time for their tax holidays to end.

* * *

1979 oil embargo, photo caption reads: "Last car in line at Olympic and Hope gas station has sign giving bad news to other gas-hunters. Sign was placed by station attendant."

* * *


by James Kunstler

“If you’re going to lie,” Joseph Goebbels used to say (in German of course), “make it a whopper.” How did that work out for the Third Reich? Today, The New York Times says “Joe Biden” is revving up to run for president again in 2024. Is that so? One DNC strategist, Maria Cardona, was quoted saying, “Democrats complain that he might be too old. But then, when they’re asked, ‘Well, who?’ There is no one else.”

There you have the sucking chest wound at the center of the Democratic Party, a malodorous vacuum where, as they like to say, democracy dies in darkness. You understand, this is exactly what you get when all you do is tell lies, always and everywhere, about everything.

Now I will tell you the truth: “Joe Biden” will not be running for president ever again. “Joe Biden” will either be impeached for real high crimes and misdemeanors, or he will be bum-rushed out of the White House on some medical pretext before Independence Day. “Joe Biden’s” crimes have finally caught up with him. He sold out his country.

The facts have been out in plain sight since before a coalition of rogues and frauds stuffed him into the Oval Office, January, 2021. As vice-president under Mr. Obama, “JB” was allowed to run a global grifting operation that netted his family tens of millions. (Mr. Obama received plenty of his own sanitized grift in the form of absurdly large book deals and TV contracts, enough swag to lead the deluxe life of a senior panjandrum. His job, post-presidency, was to feed the Woke hustle with an occasional speech and otherwise shut up.)

The coalition of rogues and frauds, a.k.a. the permanent bureaucracy or the Deep State, had committed so many crimes since 2016 that its sole agenda turned to driving the one-man wrecking-crew called Donald Trump out of office and making sure he never got close to a lever of power again, by any means necessary. That is still all that animates this gang. They managed to roll enough of the American public in the process to maintain power and influence over them via control of the news, censorship, and use of their captive legal system to harass and punish their enemies. And now it’s all falling apart.

How many Americans with the capacity to pay attention actually doubted the veracity of Hunter Biden’s laptop? Very few, I’d guess, deep down, thought millions pretended it was not for-real because the contents were so obviously incriminating. So, they had to lie to themselves. But then, what’s wrong with lying to yourself when all the authority figures in your society set the example of lying to you about everything, always, and everywhere? Do you see where this habit of lying gets you?

The trouble with lying, of course, is that it requires a never-ending struggle of covering up prior lies, and then that task requires the invention of new lies, which, in-turn, induces more fabrication of lies in a self-reinforcing feedback loop subject to the implacable law of entropy (a wearing-down to zero), until you have flown up your own cloacal aperture — the place where souls go to die. And now, maybe, you see why the regime in power has made itself so deeply and heinously soulless, which is to say: evil.

By the way, this is why the “Joe Biden” regime sent out a pack of drag queens to perform for the cameras the past two years. They needed a device so insulting to the sensibilities of people equipped with a normal moral compass that it would create a distraction from much greater insults such as stealing elections and concocting a lab-engineered pandemic to deploy deadly vaccines — these matters in themselves entailing giant matrices of lies.

Even with the stolen 2022 midterm elections in Arizona, Nevada, and Pennsylvania, the Republican Party managed to squeak into a House majority, and now a non-captive faction of that party is methodically taking steps to reveal the giant scaffold of lies America has lived under for years. One rather significant event was the prank now unspooling about the fifty-one “folks” (“JB” called them) from the Intel Community who branded Hunter’s laptop a Russian disinfo operation. Those “folks” included five living former CIA directors, wouldn’t you know? It was an obvious lie at the time, but now it’s a certified lie, since one of the five, Michael Morell, spilled the beans testifying under oath to the House Judiciary Committee that he rounded up the other fifty at the direction of “Joe Biden’s” campaign advisor, Tony Blinken, now Secretary of State.

On another side of the Biden family mischief, there is the emergence of the IRS whistleblower (as yet unnamed), who complained through formal agency channels that the IRS and the DOJ were mishandling various cases emanating out of Hunter’s laptop. A “high government official” unmasked as Attorney General Garland is accused of lying to Congress. He apparently has been leaning on the US attorney in Delaware, David Weiss, to hold off prosecuting a case that Mr. Weiss’s office finished investigating a year ago.

Doesn’t look good. Also looks like Mr. Weiss probably will be forced to lodge some actual charges against the First Son, and that these will be Mickey Mouse tax evasion raps to distract from and conceal the greater issue of the Biden family conspiracy to extract large payments from foreign governments. And then there is the matter of the handgun that Hunter acquired under false pretenses of lying about being a drug user, plus disposing of the gun in a dumpster. They’ll hope that these charges might be like some raw meat thrown to the animals. As RFK, Jr. quipped recently in a separate instance of Dem Party mischief: nice try.

These various dodges to lessen the impact of Biden family criminal culpability are likely to fail. The Bidens are caught and “Joe Biden” is about to go down, one way or another. Looks to me like a lot of this adds up to impeachable offenses, which I doubt the party will allow “JB” to go through. Today’s announcement about running for president again in 2024 is just another ruse to hold-the-line, but it won’t work either. They’ve lost control of the narrative — and the action itself. Mr. Blinken and Mr. AG Garland also look like they’ll be squeezed out of power like a couple of watermelon seeds between your fingers.

What happens when “Joe Biden” creeps off into the sunset? Use your imagination about the dark place that leaves our country, and the flavor of further shenanigans ahead.

PS: Breaking late morning Monday: ZH reports: Tucker Carlson, the highest rated cable news host in history, is out at Fox News. The network posted this: “FOX News Media and Tucker Carlson have agreed to part ways. We thank him for his service to the network as a host and prior to that as a contributor. Mr. Carlson’s last program was Friday April 21st. Fox News Tonight will air live at 8 PM/ET starting this evening as an interim show helmed by rotating FOX News personalities until a new host is named.”

Do you wonder what kind of serious repercussions this move will provoke?

Expect Tucker to be back on another platform, soon.

* * *

* * *


The Michael Morell story demonstrates that the intelligence community needs sweeping reform, beginning with getting spies all the way out of domestic political life

by Matt Taibbi

On September 08, 2002, New York Times writers Michael Gordon and Judith Miller wrote a blockbuster, titled, “U.S. Says Hussein Intensifies Quest for A-Bomb Parts.” It began:

“Iraq has stepped up its quest for nuclear weapons and has embarked on a worldwide hunt for materials to make an atomic bomb, Bush administration officials said today.

In the last 14 months, Iraq has sought to buy thousands of specially designed aluminum tubes, which American officials believe were intended as components of centrifuges to enrich uranium.”

That same day, Vice President Dick Cheney went on “Meet The Press”and told Tim Russert Iraq had “reconstituted” its nuke program, citing “a story in the New York Times this morning.”

The Cheney-MTP episode set a standard for laundering disinformation through media. The Times got its “A-Bomb Parts” story by citing “Bush administration officials,” and Cheney sold the same story to the world by citing the New York Times. This merry-go-round is a perfect way for politicians and spooks to introduce bogus news into the world without leaving fingerprints.

The new story about former acting CIA director Michael Morell looks like a similar game of disinformation telephone. Again, the House Weaponization of Government Committee led by Jim Jordan recently questioned Morell. His answers suggest he may have been “triggered” by a call from then-Biden campaign official Anthony Blinken to organize a group letter signed by 50 former intel officials, opining the Hunter Biden laptop story looked like a “Russian information operation.”

A little-noticed detail about the letter is in its next-to-last paragraph, where officials worked the word “disinformation” into the text:

“In addition, media reports say that the FBI has now opened an investigation into Russian involvement in the case. According to USA Today, ‘…federal authorities are investigating whether the material supplied to the New York Post by Rudy Giuliani is part of a smoke bomb of disinformation pushed by Russia’.”

The USA Today piece was published two days before the group letter. Citing a “person familiar with the matter,” it said the FBI was investigating the “smoke bomb of disinformation,” a USA Today characterization of the “person’s” assessment.

This is the same circular firing squad trick Cheney employed. Nameless official is source for news outlet, news outlet becomes source for different official, and in the end, no one has to take credit for making the wrong claim. This is the template for information delivery in a world run by spooks, where we won’t get news but what the Russians call versii, or versions — takes on takes on reality, with the origin source too far away to see. We’ll know what we’re supposed to think, but less and less effort is being put into the problem of giving us reasons to believe what we’re told.

We saw the same circle-trick in 2016 when a “well-placed Western intelligence source” told Michael Isikoff of Yahoo! that former Trump aide Carter Page met with Rosneft chief Igor Sechin. The article claimed Page was a “possible back channel” to the Russians.

The Isikoff piece came out on September 23rd, 2016. That same day, the Hillary For America campaign issued a statement about how it was “chilling to learn that U.S. intelligence officials are conducting a probe” into Trump’s onetime adviser.

Of course, the Clinton camp didn’t “learn” anything from the Yahoo! piece. They were the origin of it, as the “well-placed Western intelligence source” was the campaign’s own opposition researcher, British ex-spy Christopher Steele (Isikoff, who’s been forthright in answering questions on this, insists he was unaware of the connection). The Clinton campaign pulled the same stunt with the Alfa Server story, with Clinton policy aide and current Biden National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan penning a “We’re shocked, shocked” tweet “in response” to a Slate report they planted.

Given this latest news about Morell, one wonders if the Weaponization Committee is taking a look back at 2016. Recall in late July of that year, then-CIA chief John Brennan warned Barack Obama about “Russian intelligence analysis” the Agency reportedly obtained about the Clinton campaign. According to Brennan’s handwritten notes, the warning included “alleged approval by Hillary Clinton on July 26, 2016 of a proposal from one of her foreign policy advisors to vilify Donald Trump by stirring up a scandal claiming interference by Russian security services.”

It subsequently came out — among other things in a March 2017 Washington Post column by former Clinton spokesperson Jennifer Palmieri — that Palmieri and Sullivan decided to “make the rounds of the television networks’ tents” at the Democratic convention in 2016, pitching them all stories about how Russia had not only hacked the election, but “had done so to help Donald Trump.” As Palmieri wrote, “We did not succeed.”

Though some channels were willing to let Clinton spokespeople make such charges on air, these theories weren’t swimming with a roaring media tide yet. Just before, the Clinton campaign had been rocked by a Wikileaks dump that showed how completely the Democratic Party was tilted in Clinton’s favor and against rival Bernie Sanders, among other things showing then-DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz saying Sanders “skated” on his “Jewish heritage.”

When Robby Mook told Jake Tapper on CNN that “the Russians are releasing these e-mails for the purpose of actually helping Donald Trump,” Tapper appropriately asked for evidence twice, chiding Mook that this was a “very, very strong charge you’re leveling.” Mook replied by saying it wasn’t his charge, but “what experts are telling us.” The comments were construed as a desperate attempt to change the subject. How long ago was this? Even the Atlantic pooh-poohed the charges as “brazenly hypocritical.”

With media not rising fast enough to bait, what happened? A miracle. On August 5th, 2016, two weeks after Sullivan and Palmieri’s golf-cart ride, Michael Morell came out with an editorial in the New York Times, “I Ran the CIA. Now I’m Endorsing Hillary Clinton.” A key passage:

“Mr. Trump has also taken policy positions consistent with Russian, not American, interests — endorsing Russian espionage against the United States, supporting Russia’s annexation of Crimea and giving a green light to a possible Russian invasion of the Baltic States. In the intelligence business, we would say that Mr. Putin had recruited Mr. Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation.”

Morell concluded by essentially saying his source for Trump being an “unwitting agent” was “my training as an intelligence officer,” language very like the 2020 letter about the laptop. That said signatories may lack proof, but “our experience makes us deeply suspicious that the Russian government played a significant role in this case.”

The 2016 article gave new weight to Trump-Russia claims. The term “unwitting agent” appeared in headlines all over, from Reuters to Politico to NBC to the Washington Post to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. As my colleague Walter Kirn eloquently put it, “In that statement, we have the seed of seven years of bullshit.”

There may not be a specific law enjoining intelligence officials from spreading lies in mass media to further electoral aims, or against politicians using intelligence personnel to mesmerize the flaccid brains of corporate reporters, but I’d argue such behavior goes against the spirit of the CIA’s 1947 charter prohibiting domestic spycraft.

These people — all of them — need to get out of domestic politics, leave cable, and go back to living off overpaid no-show jobs at the Rand Corporation or Raytheon as God ordained. They are exactly the direct threat to democracy they keep claiming other groups are, and it’s increasingly clear our survival as a nation will depend on finding a way to expunge them from the domestic political arena. It’s their remorseless fascistic rhetoric I think I hear when I see people like Wisconsin Democrat Mark Pocan say about the Tucker Carlson story, “Now they just need to take out the rest of the trash.”

Who’s they? To what higher cabal is a member of congress referring when he talks about sweeping away the rest of America’s human trash? That sounds like Travis Bickle waiting for a “real rain to come and wash all the scum off the streets,” except in modern America that’s not a lone outcast’s fantasy but mainstream cult demand. They want the rabble washed away, and can’t wait for an excuse to start raining.


Groucho Marx walks his daughter Melinda to school in 1953

* * *


Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will chair a UN Security Council meeting Monday. Russia leads the council this month due to procedural rules, presiding over a body where members have slammed its war in Ukraine.

Beijing said it respects the sovereign state status of ex-Soviet countries after the Chinese ambassador to France said the Baltic states don't have "effective status in international law," sparking controversy.

Russia is threatening to terminate the Black Sea grain deal, viewed as critical for solving the world hunger crisis, if Group of Seven nations ban exports to the country.

Two people were killed in Bakhmut as Russian forces continue to launch nonstop assaults on the embattled eastern city, commanders on the front lines say. 


* * *


An external threat
Is what has always saved us
From our selfish selves

— Jim Luther

* * *

Lancaster, Lankeshire, England (Randy Burke)


  1. George Hollister April 25, 2023

    The only difference between CNN and Fox, and the AVA is the AVA is upfront about their bias.

    • Marmon April 25, 2023

      Lemon will probably land a spot on “The View”. Big things are in Tucker’s future, I can hardly wait to see what he does next. CNN got better yesterday, Fox News is done for. I switched over to Newsmax this morning because all the other Fox anchors are running scared now. Tucker’s firing was done to send a message. Fox News is no longer supporting conservatives or conservative values.


      • Chuck Dunbar April 25, 2023

        Let’s hope TC runs for president. That would be a ‘big thing.” Entertainment value galore, and he’s got real leadership potential. Conservative values, the true ones, were abandoned years ago, James….

      • George Hollister April 25, 2023

        An $800 million settlement paid to Dominion likely has something to do with TC’s departure. If true, there will be more shoes to drop.

        • Marmon April 25, 2023

          I hear it will probably be Watters and Hannity. I hope so, so that they join together with Tucker, Elon, and Trump and create a new platform for how patriots can learn the truth without censorship.


          • Bruce Anderson April 25, 2023

            These characters, all of whom have avoided military service, are what’s known as “sunshine patriots.” Sorry to break it to you cold, Jimbo.

            • Marmon April 25, 2023

              Pretty narrow thinking from you Bruce, these guys are fighting a big war now, and that’s the fight for free speech, humanity, and the American Way. I find your comment rather strange from someone who claims to be a real journalist.


              • Bruce Anderson April 25, 2023

                Wouldn’t dare make that claim.

                • Marmon April 25, 2023

                  So you’re admitting that you are just another Propagandist.

                  “: someone who produces or spreads propaganda : a person who spreads ideas, facts, or allegations deliberately to further a cause or to damage an opposing cause.”


                  • Bruce Anderson April 25, 2023

                    Well, gosh, Jim. I guess you got me boxed in. But propagandist for what?

        • Chuck Dunbar April 25, 2023

          Yes, accountability comes due for gross malfeasance in their practices of “journalism.”

    • Chuck Dunbar April 25, 2023

      ED NOTES:

      “TODAY, MONDAY THE 24TH OF APRIL was a great media day with the news that the odious Tucker Carlson has been fired by Fox News…”

      Calls for a little ditty in mourning:


      Poor Tucker’s gone—
      Now we’ll celebrate.
      He trucked in trash,
      And he had no brake.

      FOX says “Thanks—
      But now get lost!”
      “Your big loud-mouth—
      Look what it cost!”

  2. pca67 April 25, 2023

    It’s Buckridge RACKET Club, not Bucket Club. @@

  3. Norm Thurston April 25, 2023

    Anyone who thinks that Fox News is equal to CNN in terms of credibility just isn’t paying attention.

    • Joseph Turri April 25, 2023

      Looks like a good start with Don & Tucker.
      Two a day for the next year and maybe we get some real and accurate news….

  4. Jim Armstrong April 25, 2023

    Huntington Beach
    The Southern California coast was rich in oil reserves and was one of the first fully exploited.
    From LA to San Diego, everyone went to the beach, of course, and almost always came home with tar encrusted feet from the residue in sand.
    The only way to get it off was gasoline.

    RIP Harry Bellefonte. It is hard to tally his bananas.

  5. Whyte Owen April 25, 2023

    Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one. — A. J. Liebling

  6. Craig Stehr April 25, 2023

    ~Enlightenment in a Lost Postmodern Civilization~
    Warmest spiritual greetings, Following an enjoyable evening at Ukiah, California’s Applebee’s, quaffing two 22 ounce beers and a shot o’ Bentwing brandy, plus an order of the loaded waffle fries, while casually watching basketball, ice hockey, and commercials all at once, this segued into purchasing a Klondike ice cream at a service station, ensuring a blissful walk back to the Building Bridges Homeless Resource Center. At 7:45AM we were all awakened by the announcement that the water would be turned off in fifteen minutes for maintenance work, prompting the fastest shit shave and shower ever. Organized the outside trash & recycling area, prior to ambling south to Plowshares for another free meal courtesy of those pesky Catholic Workers, and afterwards, boarded an MTA bus for a trip to Schat’s Bakery for a java jolt to spur me on to the Mendocino Book Company for a browse, and then, here and now this very moment, am seated in front of computer #5 at the Ukiah Public Library, tap, tap tapping away. All of this is a mere prelude to hearing the ancient Indian vedic chants, which enjoin the mind with the source, on which the yogis ever dwell. Contact me if you wish to do anything crucial on the planet earth. OM Shanthi
    Click on this link if you wish to be unified with God:

    Craig Louis Stehr
    1045 South State Street, Ukiah, CA 95482
    Telephone Messages: (707) 234-3270
    April 25th, 2023 Anno Domini

  7. Grapes April 25, 2023

    Mendocino Coast Health Care District

    Quickly fished invitation out of the garbage can when I read they might be throwin’ s_ _ t at each other Thursday night.

    Board Meeting – April 27, 2023
    6:00 PM

    Redwoods Room, Adventist Health Mendocino Coast Hospital

    700 River Dr.

    Fort Bragg, CA

    Join Remote Meeting
    TAB 1 DRAFT MCHCD Bd Minutes 033023.pdf
    TAB 1 DRAFT MCHCD Special Bd Minutes 041723.pdf
    TAB 2 Treasurer’s Report 2023-04-27 Complete.pdf
    TAB 3 Report of Ad Hoc Committee on Staffing and Office 041023.pdf
    TAB 4 Seismic Compliance Planning for 3-30-23.pdf
    TAB 5 Updated Ad Hoc Committee Recommendations.pdf
    TAB 5 Bylaws Nov 2020.pdf
    TAB 5 DRAFT Bylaws full text 032623.pdf
    TAB 6 Request For Travel Reimbursement.pdf
    FULL MCHCD Board Agenda with Tabs 042723.pdf

  8. Annemarie Weibel April 27, 2023

    Great Albion Bridge photo by Jeff Goll.

    The correct name for this bridge is Albion River Bridge. In 2017, the Albion River Bridge was placed in the California Register of Historical Resources as well as in the National Register of Historic Places. The Albion River Bridge was opened for traffic in 1944.

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