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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Warming | Headlands | Financial Reporting | Quizless | Swingless | Forest Fundraiser | Garden Tour | Rummage Sale | Poetry Celebration | Didion SF | Ed Notes | Winter Thaw | Chant Prep | Covelo | Island Encounter | Yesterday's Catch | Stupider | Congressional Spine | Owner Blameless | Not Surprised | Wage Battle | New Joe's | New Crucifix | Dick Carlson | No Prostitutes | Drugs | Junius Groves | US Elections | Psych Wifi | Disinfo Firehose | Self Serve | Liar Liar | Women Trouble | Digital Colonization | Ukraine | Leeds/Liverpool

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AN UPPER RIDGE building over the West Coast will promote warm afternoon temperatures through Saturday. Cooler weather with showers and thunderstorms will then become probable from late this weekend into middle portions of next week. (NWS)

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Mendocino Headlands (Jeff Goll)

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A SOMEWHAT MORE REASONABLE DISCUSSION of the County’s financial reporting problems took place Tuesday morning when County Auditor-Controller-Treasurer-Tax Collector Chamise Cubbison provided a carry over memo and tried yet again to explain to the mostly tone-deaf supervisors the unnecessarily burdensome and disputatious conditions the Board has imposed on her office. In the end the Board unanimously agreed to try to work together better between now and May 25 when they hope to take another shot at the subject. (More details to come.)

(Mark Scaramella)

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BOONVILLE QUIZ RETURNS NEXT WEEK: It’s the final Thursday of the month this week so there’s no Quiz at Lauren’s at The Buckhorn. We go again next week on the first Thursday of the month - May 4th, tipping off at 7pm. Hope to see many of you there. Cheers, Steve Sparks, The Quizmaster.

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On Saturday, April 22, over 1,200 people and more than 50 volunteers gathered to celebrate Noyo Food Forest's 14th Annual Earth Day Festival, raising over $21,000 to support the organization's work in the community. With the help of generous sponsors, dedicated volunteers, and a vibrant local community, the festival was a jubilant success.

"We're thrilled to see such strong support," said Teresa Raffo, Noyo Food Forest Board President. "Thank you for supporting the Plant Sale, BBQ, Smoothie Bike, the Upcycled T-shirt press, and donation buckets!” 

Funds raised on Earth Day and from dozens of local festival sponsors means Noyo Food Forest can continue to provide organic produce from our Learning Garden for the Fort Bragg High School cafeteria (for the price of non-organically grown commercial produce), expand summer intern and CSA programs, and promote food sovereignty in the community through plant propagation and sales.

In addition to raising funds, the Earth Day festival provided a community platform for workshops/panels on regenerative farming, an artisan makers market, information and activity booths from 26 local non-profits, and delicious food. 

Pomo and Yuki Elder Edwina King opened the festival with a moving ceremony, followed by music from Lavender Grace and the Honey Hive, Keeter Stuart, and 2nd Hand Grass. KOZT’s Dred Scott MCd the afternoon.

CircusMecca students raised their own funds to attend the festival and perform aerial feats. 

Attendees enjoyed bounce houses, plant shopping in the Learning Garden, interactive art projects, sunflower planting, face painting, and an upcycled t-shirt booth.

"We are incredibly grateful to our sponsors, volunteers, and community," said Raffo. "We’re also thrilled that Fort Bragg High School has hired a teacher to lead a CTE program in the Learning Garden, beginning Fall 2023. This will further expand Noyo Food Forest’s impact. And, with our community’s support, we’ll continue to provide garden education and healthy food to our kids, and promote food sovereignty and sustainability in our community."

More information about Noyo Food Forest can be found at

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THE GREENWOOD CIVIC CLUB invites you to take part in the 34th Annual Elk Rummage Sale to be held Saturday and Sunday, May 20 and 21 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Greenwood Community Center in downtown Elk. Masks are highly recommended indoors. Discover antiques, collectibles, clothes, books, toys, housewares, furniture, tools, and more at bargain prices.

Come Saturday for the best selection and come back for the Sunday Super Sale! While shopping, feast on baked good, drinks and homemade tempting lunch items.

Credit cards now accepted! The Greenwood Civic Club is a non-profit organization. Proceeds from the annual event benefit community projects, the summer children's program and student scholarships. For more information, call Angela at 707-877-1130 or 509-630-971.

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48th Anniversary * 18th consecutive Revival

Marty Durlin of KZYX Art Waves interviews Dan Roberts and Gordon Black regarding the upcoming Mendocino Spring Poetry Celebration, scheduled for June 11 at the Hill House, with radio broadcasts to follow, beginning June 18.

Tune in here for info and flights of fancy:

Gordon Black <>

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Joan Didion in San Francisco, 1955

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MIKE GENIELLA WRITES: Years ago, after a long hot “Redwood Summer” of anti-logging protests, the editors at The Press Democrat yanked me from covering Big Timber on the North Coast. I had given a lengthy interview about my experiences to a reputable freelance journalist, who let the Anderson Valley Advertiser publish the piece. The PD editors went ballistic. They disdained the AVA (it was not an “objective” news organization), and were outraged that somehow my misguided attempt to defend the PD's controversial coverage of Earth First! rallies (a newsroom colleague described in writing that demonstrators who showed up for a massive rally in Fort Bragg were “mostly long-haired vegetarians in VW vans”) appeared in the devil publication. The PD's official stance was that somehow I had created the “possibility of a perceived bias.” I was stunned by the nonsensical declaration and the vitriolic reaction from the bunker in Santa Rosa. After a few months in professional exile, I returned to writing about timber practices which were the hot environmental topic then. I have never forgotten, however, the reaction of my editors to my honest, thoughtful responses in that AVA interview. The PD editors certainly were not ‘objective’.”

YES, YES, it all comes back to me now. I've always thought that Geniella had the toughest job imaginable during that fraught time. He somehow managed to maintain working relationships with everyone from Harry Merlo, cut and run chief at Louisiana-Pacific, to Judi Bari, the Northcoast's reigning diva of dissent, nevermind having his cringing editors down in their Santa Rosa bunker looming over him with their re-write pens. Try that job some time, but Geniella pulled it off, managing to accurately and fairly report the wild events of that time.

AS FOR THE preferred Press Democrat stereotype of the participants at the three big rallies inspired by Bari's Earth First! — Samoa, Fort Bragg and Fortuna — as a bunch of long-haired vegetarians, it was Bari's organizational wizardry that got wildly diverse crowds of the environmentally concerned all headed in the same direction, which was the obvious looting of Northcoast forests, and the jobs that went with them, by outside timber corporations, nevermind the ecological damage the hurry-up overcut did to those forests.

WHEN BARI was car-bombed by her ex-husband — these days a permanent resident of New Zealand — a huge cover-up of the true facts of that event soon began, which is where the Press Democrat, true to form, abdicated its journalo-responsibilities. Rather than give Geniella, the guy who knew all the players, an investigator and his full-time attention to find out what happened and how, the paper restricted him to simple reports on mostly irrelevant aspects of the case. Geniella could have wrapped up the bombing “mystery” in a month if he'd been given the means and the time to devote himself to it. Instead, Steve Talbot of PBS, and based in San Francisco, and his investigator, Dave Helvarg, wrapped it all up in a solid month of legwork, concluding, without saying so, the husband did it.

THE COPS? The locals were content with the Oakland PD's assertion tha Bari was knowingly carrying the bomb that nearly killed her, and did kill her seven years later, while the FBI faked an investigation and finally said, “Case closed. No one will talk to us.” And, years later, came the final treachery, a double play by the FBI and the Press Democrat acting, as they had throughout, in concert, “lost” a key piece of evidence, the Lord's Avenger Letter, a crude attempt by the bomber to divert attention from himself to a range of implausible suspects ranging from Christian fanatics to the entire male gender.

SO, THE FBI closes the case and returns the original of The Lord's Avenger Letter to the Press Democrat (it was addressed to Geniella, c/o the paper), a newspaper with a full-time librarian and a long-established practice of filing everything related to all stories published in the paper, and when Geniella and Susan Faludi ask to see it and, hopefully, send it off for DNA testing, the Press Democrat tells them they've “lost” the letter. (Geniella, incidentally, got his own FBI file when the feds wrote to the Press Democrat wondering “what could be done to rein him in.”) And here we are, my fellow lib-labs, with the case unmentioned and unmentionable at lib-lab's audio bastions at KMUD, KZYX and KPFA. 

KQED: Tuesday night’s Conclusion of “America and the Taliban” — Our three-part docuseries on America's longest war draws to a close Tuesday night.

PER the journalism discussion over the past few days, the three-part PBS documentary called “America and the Taliban” is as fair and balanced as fair and balanced media consumers could hope for. It's an excellent and highly critical recap of that decade-long debacle, culminating, as we saw, in the unanticipated, pell mell last chapter at the airport in Kabul, as unanticipated by our military and political strategists as the foolish war itself.

IT WILL BE interesting to see if the Biden Construct can withstand the now irrefutably documented evidence that his depraved son, Hunter, was shaking down foreign governments for “access” to “The Big Guy.” The old grifter can probably elude impeachment by citing his age, the only excuse he's got left. Biden vs Trump, two career criminals vying for captain of the ship. As Lenny Bruce once said of Chicago, “It's so corrupt, it's thrilling.”

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Winter Thaw (2022) by Phyllis Shafer

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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

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NORM CLOW: Where Ruth held the helm as General Manager of Thrifty Car Rental of Guam and Saipan. Next door was Hertz, and one day a young man washing cars there came over and asked, "you're Ruth Clow, right?" Turns out he was Christopher Mike, from Truk, who had been an FFA exchange student at Anderson Valley High School several years earlier when Ruth worked there in the agriculture department and I was chairman of the advisory board. Chris lived with Kenneth Jones and Pat Jones during his school year at AV. He had a commercial boat license and was completing his helicopter license while working at Hertz and Chuck's Steak House, where he treated us all to a great dinner one evening. A really sharp young man. (It was our activities with the agriculture department and Future Farmers that got us out to the islands in the first place.)

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Dewitt, Garcia, Garnica

KENNETH DEWITT JR., Ukiah. Parole violation.

CHRIOPHSTER GARCIA, Ukiah. Petty theft, parole violation.

AMANDA GARNICA, Covelo. Burglary.

Hoaglen, Lockhart, Mateo

SHAWNTEL HOAGLEN, Laytonville. DUI, child endangerment.

SHEILA LOCKHART, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

ARCADIO MATEO-DIEGO, Potter Valley. Domestic battery, robbery, false imprisonment, kidnapping.

Mendez, Mize, Nelson

CHRISTOPHER MENDEZ, Chatsworth/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

JONNIE MIZE, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

AMBER NELSON, Lucerne/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

Newcomb, Rettig, Rodriguez, B.Silva

JAMES NEWCOMB, Ukiah. Resisting, failure to appear.

DONALD RETTIG, Ukiah. Disobeying court order, evidence destruction, conspiracy.

MANUEL RODRIGUEZ, Covelo. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, ammo possession by prohibited person, evasion, resisting, felon-addict with firearm, conspiracy, parole violation.

BUCK SILVA, Willits. Assault, battery. 

H.Silva, Vega, Whitman

HALEY SILVA, Willits. Assault, battery, DUI, suspended license for DUI, battery on peace officer, resisting, probation revocation.

MYCHELL VEGA-AYALA, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

BRANDON WHITMAN, Lynwood/Fort Bragg. Domestic abuse, false imprisonment, battery, resisting, probation revocation.

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To the Editor:

I would not be surprised if former FOX News host Tucker Carlson ran for president.

Carlson would be Donald Trump's biggest threat in the 2024 Republican presidential primary because of his built-in base. Carlson would raise a ton of money.

I don't know if anybody has heard Trump lately. He sounds stupider than ever.

John Sakowicz

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ROB MANFRED 'SORRY' FOR A'S FANS OVER TEAM MOVE, says owner John Fisher isn't to blame

by Liz Roscher

The news that the Oakland Athletics are likely moving to Las Vegas is still new, and many A's fans are still (and will remain) deeply hurt by what looks like a naked money grab from the team's notoriously cheap owner, John Fisher. But don't worry! Commissioner Rob Manfred is here to rub salt into all those fresh, bleeding wounds.

While speaking to the Associated Press Sports Editors on Monday, Manfred took an entire millisecond to express his regret about the A's moving before immediately defending Fisher and saying he shouldn't be blamed for anything.

“I feel sorry for the fans in Oakland. I really do,” Manfred said via the AP. “But for the city of Oakland to point fingers at John Fisher, it’s not fair.

“We have shown an unbelievable commitment to the fans in Oakland by exhausting every possible opportunity to try to get something done in Oakland,” he added. “Unfortunately, the government doesn’t seem to have the will to get it done.”

Instead of blaming Fisher for choosing to stop negotiating with the city of Oakland, Manfred thinks the Oakland city government is to blame for not giving Fisher, the billionaire owner of a sports team, everything he wanted. Compare that to Vegas, where the A's are being promised half a billion dollars from the state of Nevada for their new ballpark.

Apparently a new ballpark and a willing government investor are all it takes to fix a franchise that has had deep competition issues for decades.

“To me, it ought to be all positive on the competitive front,” Manfred added. “You got really smart baseball operations people. You got owners that want to win, and I think Las Vegas will present a real revenue enhancing opportunity. So I think you’re going to have a good product.”

Unless the A's are getting new owners when they move to Las Vegas, it's never really been proven that Fisher is an owner who wants to win. He's an owner who likes money (like every team owner), which is why he's buying a giant plot of land in Vegas. There will be a stadium there, but theoretically, there will also be restaurants, hotels, movie theaters, stores and other things that make money for landowners.

But as far as the A's being competitive, who knows what Manfred is talking about. The A's have never in their history had a payroll over $100 million. Fisher has never put enough money into the team to make it sustainably competitive. Instead, GM Dave Kaval occasionally stumbles onto a good team after yet another year of having to scrape the bottom of the free-agent bargain bin. The Athletics have traded nearly every star they've had for minor-league lottery tickets that occasionally net them a great player … whom they trade as soon as they have to pay him what he's worth. They even traded their manager to the San Diego Padres after the 2021 season!

But according to Manfred, a permanent, costly, needless change in city will cure the A's of the competitive woes they've endured under Fisher. Unless the Vegas stadium deal requires Fisher to undergo a "Young Frankenstein"-style brain transplant before breaking ground, no one will believe it until they see it.


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I KNOW ENOUGH of the world now to have almost lost the capacity of being much surprised by anything.

David Copperfield, Charles Dickens (1850)

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by Ana Ibarra

Supporters of a proposal to raise the minimum wage for California health workers point to Inglewood, where last fall voters approved a wage hike that primarily applied to staff at dialysis clinics and at the city’s only hospital. But the implementation of that local measure has been bumpy, signaling potential problems for the larger effort.

Inglewood’s ordinance went into effect Jan.1, raising the minimum wage for those workers to $25 an hour. Then in March, Centinela Hospital Medical Center, a 362-bed acute care facility owned by Prime Health Care, laid off 48 workers and reduced hours for others, according to a complaint filed earlier this month by the Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West. The union led Inglewood’s measure and is sponsoring the statewide bill.

The union alleges hospital administrators made the cuts in retaliation to the newly implemented wage increase, even though the city ordinanceprohibits health facilities from funding the pay increase by laying workers off or reducing their benefits. 

Centinela officials maintain that the hospital is complying with Inglewood’s minimum wage ordinance. They say they laid off workers after a thorough assessment that determined the hospital was overstaffed in certain units. Centinela offered nearly half of the affected staff other positions within the hospital and many accepted, according to a hospital spokesperson.

“The recent reduction in force was entirely unrelated to the ordinance and affected 2% of the staff,” Susan Lowe, Centinela’s spokesperson, said in an email. “It was related to strategic changes in operational needs and improvement measures, and staff have been added in areas that positively impact patient care and address community needs.”

While the lawsuit is pending, the union is advocating for a broader pay hike for California health workers via Senate Bill 525, by Los Angeles Democratic Sen. Maria Elena Durazo, a longtime labor leader. Durazo’s bill calls for a minimum hourly wage of $25 that would be adjusted annually for inflation. California’s minimum wage is currently $15.50, although it’s higher in some cities and counties.

If the proposal becomes law, the new minimum wage would go into effect in January 2024 and benefit an estimated 469,000 health workers. It would include people who make slightly more than $25, who would likely get a corresponding pay increase, according to an analysis by UC Berkeley’s Labor Center. 

Qualifying workers would receive an average increase of $5.74 per hour, which would increase operating costs at health facilities by about 3%, the report said. Some lower paid workers in health facilities include nursing assistants, patient aides, medical technicians and janitorial workers. 

The proposal faces a great deal of opposition from industry heavy hitters, including hospital executives, clinic leaders and the doctors’ lobby, which argue this isn’t something all providers can afford or easily implement, especially when they’re dealing with other stressors in their budgets. The California Chamber of Commerce lists the bill as a “job killer.”

But union leaders say the time is now, especially as the industry grapples with workforce shortages that are burning out current staff. “Twenty-five dollars an hour breaks down to roughly $50,000 a year,” said Renee Saldaña, a spokesperson for SEIU-UHW. “It’s not asking for the moon, this is just the baseline of a fair wage for the people who provide vital treatment.”

Eneryk Santana last month joined the tens of thousands of people who commute daily across the San Diego-Tijuana border for work or school. He’s a medical assistant at San Ysidro Health Center in Chula Vista and the high cost of living on the U.S. side, he said, forced him to look for housing in Mexico.

To avoid rush hour traffic at the border crossing, he tries to leave his place by 4 a.m. While the border cities are less than 20 miles apart, the process of crossing the border can take up to a few hours on busy days. The commute has been an adjustment, but he said his monthly rent in Tijuana is about $1,000 less than what he was paying in Chula Vista — a significant difference for someone making $22 an hour. 

For Santana, a boost in pay would allow him to consider moving back to the U.S., he said. Ideally it could also mean more people attracted to this type of work. “Being short-staffed, when someone calls off, we don’t have much staff who can cover,” Santana said. “And it’s hard not only for workers, but also for the patients, who sometimes have long wait times.”

Workers in clinics and hospitals account for about half of all workers who would see a boost in pay under Durazo’s bill, according to the analysis from UC Berkeley’s Labor Center. Because of their current low earnings, workers in home health services and nursing homes would see the biggest difference — approximately a 40% increase.

Three-fourths of the workforce who would receive a raise under the bill are women, and almost half are Latino, according to the report. 

Hospitals are leading the opposition to the wage hike, arguing that some facilities are in precarious financial situations. A handful of hospitals in the state have reduced or plan to reduce services. Last week a Montebello hospital filed for bankruptcy and a hospital in the San Joaquin Valley closed its doors at the beginning of this year. 

Having to boost minimum wage pay, hospital leaders say, would only add to that strain. A wage hike at this time “takes a very serious problem and makes it impossible,” Carmela Coyle, president of the California Hospital Association, recently said in a call with reporters.

Punctuating its point, the hospital association released a report earlier this month that found that 1 in 5 hospitals are in an “unsustainable financial position” and at risk of closing. Hospitals are considered at-risk if their incomes aren’t covering costs, meaning they are losing money, and have increasing debt, said the report, which sampled 114 hospitals. 

Union leaders have pushed back on hospitals’ arguments, noting that most hospitals are part of large health systems that can weather rough patches. 

Health economists have described the current landscape of California hospitals as a mixed bag with independent and rural hospitals, especially, experiencing severe financial pressures. 

During the peak of the pandemic, hospitals had increased expenses, but also received financial aid from the federal government. That funding phased out in 2022. The state has not yet audited totals for this last fiscal year, but in 2021, altogether California hospitals posted earnings of $11.9 billion, up from the $8.5 billion hospitals recorded in 2019, according to financial data from the Department of Health Care Access and Information. 

A coalition of counties has also voiced its opposition to the bill, noting the bill would apply to workers at county public health and mental health departments, as well as clinics and hospitals operated by counties. 

Implementing such a bill would cost the counties hundreds of millions of dollars annually, said Kalyn Dean, a legislative advocate with the California State Association of Counties. To absorb that cost, she said, counties could be forced to reduce services and cut jobs in other government departments. 

Meanwhile, clinic leaders say that while they support the idea of boosting pay for their workers, they are subject to strict reimbursement rules that do not allow them to take on the additional expense. The vast majority of community health centers’ patients are covered by Medi-Cal, the health insurance program for low-income people. Medi-Cal pays these centers a fixed amount per patient visit. Modifying that amount to afford a wage increase would require both state and federal approval, said Dennis Cuevas-Romero, vice president of government affairs at the California Primary Care Association, which represents health centers.

“Unlike other businesses, we can’t just say, ‘OK, the state requires us to increase the minimum wage, let’s just increase the cost of our services.’ We are prohibited from doing so,” he said. 

Some provider groups are likely to seek an exemption from this bill, but community health centers say they would like to find a way to make this work because a “nightmare” scenario would be for their clinic employees to leave for better-paying jobs at a nearby hospital. 

“Our health centers want to get there,” Cuevas-Romero said. “I think the questions are: Where’s the money coming from? And how do we implement it?”

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NEW JOE'S RESTAURANT at 540 Broadway (at Romolo). Further east on the block is the Little Swiss, St. Moritz Cafe, and Finnochio's.

My dad, Carlo Sardi, immigrated from Florence, Italy in 1925. He worked in New York City, Los Angeles, and ended up in San Francisco, where he met and married my mom (also from Italy). They lived and worked in North Beach. He was a waiter at New Joe's. My mother worked at Sonoma Mission Creamery on Broadway.

The owner of New Joe's restaurant was Joe Ingrassia, who I think originally owned a pool hall that might have been on the same street. I have a recollection of Joe and my dad playing cards with all the guys someplace on Columbus Avenue in North Beach, (at the Waiters Union?) on his days off. My mom took my brother and I by there on the way to shop at Panelli's Food Store. We lived on Green Street, and everything was nearby, including the church and school which I attended in my early years, St.'s Peter and Paul.

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by Peter Hartlaub

Tucker Carlson made unexpected news today — ousted by Fox News, just days after the conservative cable station settled a defamation suit filed by Dominion Voting Systems for a reported $787.5 million.

If he’s looking for support, perhaps the former host of “Tucker Carlson Tonight” can lean on his father, a journalist who was enmeshed in his own politics-related libel nightmare more than 50 years ago, repeatedly making the front page of The San Francisco Chronicle.

Tucker McNear Carlson was born in San Francisco on May 16, 1969, at Children’s Hospital to his journalist father Dick Carlson and socialite mother Linda Lombardi. His christening months later at Trinity Episcopal Church — attended by “His Girl Friday” and “Gypsy” star Rosalind Russell — merited nine paragraphs on The Chronicle society pages.

But at the same time, his father was making much bigger news. In September 1969, Dick Carlson co-wrote a Look Magazine article titled “The Web That Links San Francisco’s Mayor Joe Alioto and the Mafia.”

Among other things, the cover story by Carlson and his co-writer Lance Brisson claimed Alioto was “enmeshed in a web of alliances with at least six leaders of the Cosa Nostra” and that his “channels of communication with the Cosa Nostra remain open.”

While Dick Carlson was a 28-year-old freelance writer at the time, and Tucker Carlson is one of the most influential figures in American media, there are some eerie parallels: Look Magazine was accused of running a sensational article to save itself from financial losses, similar to some of Dominion’s accusations against Fox News.

At the center of the earlier case, Alioto suggested Carlson and Brisson’s article was motivated by racism and politics; Alioto’s grandfather was a Sicilian immigrant, and he said the story perpetuated stereotypes about Italians.

The Chronicle reported on Sept. 12, 1969, that Alioto showed up for “the largest press conference of his career,” and categorically denied any mob ties. He announced a $12.5 million lawsuit against the owners of Look Magazine, claiming the hit piece was published to stall his political career. He had been rumored as a running mate for Democratic presidential hopeful Hubert Humphrey.

Alioto also accused the Look team of leaking an advance issue to then-governor Ronald Reagan, whose staff passed out copies to the local media.

Look and Carlson initially defended their reporting, but it reportedly fell apart in trials and depositions. Law enforcement sources contradicted some key details, and when Carlson was questioned on the witness stand as to why the Mafia would meet at a family restaurant that didn’t serve alcohol, the reporter testified most mafioso had “a puritanical streak” and “lead quiet home lives.”

While Dominion settled with Fox News last week moments before the trial started, Alioto did not. The case continued for 7½ years, with two trials ending with hung juries and one ending with the jury unable to decide on the “actual malice” question.

The fourth trial, in 1977, was decided by Superior Court Judge William W. Schwarzer, who declared “by clear and convincing evidence that (Look) published the defamatory statements contained in the article with actual malice,” and awarded Alioto $350,000 in damages.

By that time, Dick Carlson and his family had moved to San Diego. The elder Carlson later became director of Voice of America, and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

“We beat the scoundrels,” Alioto said in a 1977 statement. “How sweet it is.”

(SF Chronicle)

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by Bill Clark

I remember there was a little wacky kid who was older than me. He was a firebug, setting fires to these big cattails that would grow around our neighborhood in Brooklyn. He tried to get me to go with him. I was complicit in that I didn’t tell anybody that I knew who did it. Here it is 55 years later and I’m still thinking about it. Nobody got hurt, nothing was damaged. It was just wrong, and I saw it going on. Then when I lived in the projects, I saw a lot of assaults, fights. My dad bought me a beautiful bike and I would have died rather than give that bike up — I had to fight a guy over it.

Then I moved into a real poor working-class neighbourhood. People wouldn’t hesitate if someone had some stolen property they were selling. As I got older it was actually mob-type people who would have basements set up like a supermarket or a department store. Selling clothes or whatever happened to be coming in. A lot of the kids on my block were thieves. Back then nobody would burglarize anybody’s home. That was unheard of. They’d break into a store, but nobody would hit a house. When I came back from the military seven years later heroin was around and nothing was safe. The kids I grew up with were like zombies.

When I first became a detective we used to have to arraign all our prisoners by appearing in court. You would see parents while their son was being arraigned, and they didn’t have a clue as to what had gone wrong. It turned me off drugs in a big way. All the glamorization that was done by the lovely Beatles — I don’t think anybody promoted drug use more than the Beatles. I lost a brother to drugs. He was 22 years old, 14 years younger than me. He had been in the military. When he went into the military I thought he was going into a safe haven because it had been such a good place for me. I found out later that in an effort to make a volunteer army they allowed drug supermarkets in barracks — they would do anything to retain people. So instead of being in a safe place, he was in the worst place. When he went to Germany apparently he did some kind of drugs. He was discharged, and lived with my parents.

I was living in Long Island with my wife and kids. He was a bartender and one night he had a fight with his girlfriend. He went to the corner and bought some sodium seconals, went back to the bar and started drinking shots. They knew he was upset with his girlfriend, they just thought he was drunk. So he put his head down and they put him in a booth to sleep it off. Before they realized that he was in trouble he’d probably been dead an hour or so. That was a shock for me, I had no idea he had that kind of problem. If he’d died and I’d known he had a problem and not done anything about it, I don’t know if I could have survived it. I watched my parents with that same look on their face, not understanding. My parents never got over that.

* * *

JUNIUS G. GROVES (1859-1925) Farmer, landowner, and businessman Junius G. Groves was one of the wealthiest African Americans of the early 20th century. Born a slave in Green County, Kentucky, Groves was later liberated and joined other freedmen in the “Great Exodus” to Kansas in 1879, eventually finding work as a farmhand. Impressed with his strong work ethic and production, Groves’ employer offered him nine acres of land to farm on shares. By 1884, he and his wife Matilda had saved enough to purchase 80 acres of land near Edwardsville, Kansas. So successful was their venture that, just four years later, they had acquired a total of 2,000 acres and replaced their one-room shanty with a 22-room mansion. Groves made a name for himself as a potato grower, producing as many as 721,500 bushels in one year – far and away more than any other farmer – and earning the title of “Potato King of the World.” He also operated a general store, maintained several orchards, and had investments in various mining and banking interests. Groves worked the farm until his death in 1925. He attributed his success to the endless hard work and devotion of his wife and 12 children.

* * *

US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS are children’s entertainment. The only reason to pay attention to a US presidential election is to highlight the elite manipulations that go into it to help people understand that the game is rigged. Once you get sucked in to cheering for actual candidates you’ve lost sight of what’s really happening, like someone who got so drawn in to the movie that they forget they’re sitting in a theater.

— Caitlin Johnstone

* * *

* * *


by Matt Taibbi

The plan was a comprehensive count. With a sizable team of smart temporary hires, each looking into a different area of the #TwitterFiles, we thought counting all the mainstream news stories that would need retracting or correcting in light of information found in Twitter documents would make for an easy little sidebar, something simple for the public to digest.

The idea seemed easy. We would take a Twitter doc raising questions about a news story and write a suggested note for the story’s editor. In a lot of cases it wasn’t clear the piece was wrong exactly, but that new information might require a call or two to clear up a quote, add an update about a source, correct a fact or two, etc.

In the Files there were around a few dozen discrete incidents in which Twitter had concerns internally, and where the public might want to know what those were. The “Hamilton 68” fiasco, in which a think-tank called the Alliance for Securing Democracy purported to track 600 Twitter accounts linked to “Russian influence activities” but turned out to mostly be following ordinary Americans, Canadians, and British, was an example of a relatively easy fix for an editor. If you used the Hamilton “dashboard” of accounts as a source for a story about “Russian bots,” you probably needed either to retract altogether, or add a note saying the Russian-ness and bot-ness of those accounts has since been called into question.

In a few cases, news organizations have already added editor’s notes as threads were released — we should commend Mother Jones for adding such updates to many of their articles which referenced Hamilton — which gave cause for optimism. Maybe we could convince other reporters and editors to make the corrections ahead of time. How big of a job could that be?

Too big, as it turned out. Once humorously obsessive Matt Orfalea got going on the project, he quickly fell into a funk. He started just by looking just for video clips of broadcast or cable outlets referencing Hamilton 68, and immediately started racking up ridiculous numbers. The first time he mentioned he was having a fit/time problem with the video, I was skeptical. Orf wasn’t counting print stories at first, and didn’t venture initially into other incidents beyond Ham68. It didn’t seem possible there could there be too many instances to compile on video.

But there were. A large part of his logistical problem involved MSNBC, whose extravagant on-air warnings of Russian bots were fattening his compilation. “I thought, ‘If I could only do this without MSNBC, I could get this down to a manageable size,’” he said.

That led to an idea of making a separate video that only chronicled MSNBC making Hamilton-inspired references to Russian bots. “I was relieved,” he said. “I thought, ‘This way, I might be able to make a video about everyone else.’”

The rest of the team eventually had to scrap the idea of counting all the reporting problems suggested by the #TwitterFiles. The amazing, agonizing video above shows why. During the time period in question — mainly the period between 2016 and 2022 — false innuendo generated either by government agencies or so-called “anti-disinformation” sites constituted such a huge part of everyday media coverage that it was almost easier to identify the stories not generated by this subterranean information cartel.

This is part of the new media strategy in the Censorship-Industrial Complex age: in addition to downgrading and deamplifying dissent, fringe political ideas, controversial takes, offensive speech, and, yes, even true errors and foreign propaganda, the CIC softens up audiences to accept certain ideas through sheer, unrelenting repetition. You’re not hearing one or two stories about Russian bots or evil anti-vaxxers or even the treachery of Jill Stein and the Green Party, you’re hearing hundreds just on one channel, and God knows how many more in other outlets and via social media. One’s defenses wear down after a while, and there’s a natural instinct to grow afraid of suggesting the opposite around friends after a while.

What was true of the bot story then is still true of other topics now. 

How many Ukrainian flag emojis have you seen? How many stories blaming everyone but the obvious suspect for the Nord Stream blast? How relatively nervous are you to say something even mildly counter-narrative about those subjects? Contrary to what we might imagine, conviction can be worn down by volume, like shingles cracking under years of weather.

Lastly, it’s appropriate to use strong language to describe what MSNBC did with Ham68, because they have to have known for a while these reports were problematic. Even the release of the “new” Hamilton 2.0 in 2019, in which the think-tank said it would henceforth only cite sources that “we can directly attribute to the Russian, Chinese, or Iranian governments,” should have been a red flag for anyone who did stories based on their earlier dashboard.

But MSNBC apparently didn’t go back and examine prior claims then, and have repeatedly refused requests by me and others to do so since. They don’t care, and as Orf shows, they don’t care in high, high volume. Kudos to Orfalea for having the patience and discipline to record all of this in one place with his trademark editing wizardry, creating a video that pounds the insanity of the period into your head so repeatedly that it just might prevent the otherwise inevitable memory-holing of this episode. Eleven minutes thirty! Imagine how much video it would have taken to capture the list we tried to make.

* * *

Life Magazine cover photo (1943) showing Gilmore Self-Service Station where you could save 5¢ per gallon by filling the tank yourself. View is looking east on Beverly Boulevard.

* * *


Liar, liar, pants on fire
Your nose is longer than a telephone wire

Ask me, baby, why I'm sad
You been out all night, know you been bad
Don't tell me different, know it's a lie
Come kill me, honey, see how I cry

Why must you hurt me, do what you do?
Listen here, girl, can't you see I love you?
Make a little effort, try to be true
I'll be happy, not so blue

Liar, liar, pants on fire
Your nose is longer than a telephone wire

If you keep on tellin' me those lies
Still goin' out with other guys
There'll come a day I'll be gone
Take my advice, won't be long

When that day comes, won't be mad
Be free of you, but I'll still be sad
In spite of your cheatin', still love you so
I'll be unhappy if I let you go

Liar, liar, pants on fire
Your nose is longer than a telephone wire

— Dennis Craswell & James Donna (Castaways) 1965

* * *

* * *

WE ARE ALL unwilling, or oblivious, participants in the tech industry’s single-minded goal to capture our full attention. In the ‘race to the bottom of the brain stem’ children are the most vulnerable contestants. Their minds are part of a relentless digital colonization, and unless we intervene, we risk the overall well-being of future generations.

— Ruth Gaskovski, From Feeding Moloch to 'Digital Minimalism'

* * *


Moscow said it intends to voice Russia’s position at the second day of the United Nations Security Council, where it is the current presiding member. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met criticism from Western diplomats over the war on Monday.

The Kremlin claimed its concerns have yet to be addressed regarding the extension of the Black Sea grain deal, which is viewed as critical for solving the world hunger crisis. 

Ahead of a possible counteroffensive, Ukraine's military claimed it is achieving "impressive results" against Russian forces on the eastern bank of the Dnipro River in Kherson.

The Ukrainian military said that the Russians are concentrating their forces on the assault in Bakhmut — but reducing offensive operations in other areas. In the south, Ukrainian forces struck the frontline town of Tokmak. In the east, at least two people were killed by a Russian strike in Kupyansk.

* * *

Leeds/Liverpool canal near Skiptom (Randy Burke)


  1. George Hollister April 26, 2023

    According to the WSJ, and they should know, Tucker Carlson was fired because he was responsible for creating a toxic, and hostile work environment at Fox. He is also being sued by a former employee for harassment. TC was not an advocate of the unverified voting machine election fraud narrative, as I had assumed he was. I have never watched his show. TC is also not a big Trump fan, according to the WSJ article I read.

    • George Hollister April 26, 2023

      Here is the speech, on YouTube, TC gave at the Heritage Foundation, just before he was fired. He sounds a lot more like Bruce Anderson than Bruce Anderson ever would admit. Check it out.

      • Chuck Dunbar April 26, 2023


        Well George, I gave it a try and listened to parts of this speech, as Carlson gave great praise to himself for “tell(ing) the truth about something” and “feeling the power” of doing so. And of being “the brave person in the crowd” and of representing his own “goodness”—opposed to the “badness” of others. I confess I gave up pretty early on, shame on me. It’s hard to listen very long to an egomaniac.

        And I gave up because Carlson has in reality become a famous man, listened to and revered by millions, who has with great vigor spread division and hatred of others who are different, especially the oppressed, like immigrants and many minorities. That’s only part of it, and I won’t go on here with his long list of thematic hatreds. Carlson’s made himself famous and relatively rich by shaming and blaming, and by evoking anger and fear—catering to the worst impulses in our country, in the manner of Limbaugh and Jones, and long ago, McCarthy. He’s just another damn demagogue, riding high on the cheap thrills that demagogues indulge in. It works for a while, and then they go under as reasonable ideals and ways prevail, as American history tells us again and again.

        Finally, to compare Carlson to Bruce Anderson in any way is shocking, beyond reason. It does not work, does not fit.

        • Harvey Reading April 26, 2023

          The Heritage crowd is not known for its intellect.

        • George Hollister April 26, 2023

          Bruce Anderson is in print, like Tucker Carlson is in speech. Different mediums is all. Like everyone here, Tucker is pretty sure of himself as well.

          • Chuck Dunbar April 26, 2023

            No, that’s not right, George. Carlson’s a smug ass–a young soul– who has used his audience and led them down a nasty path–like Trump, a celebrity of sorts who has no scruples. Would you, or any of us, say that about our editor or “everyone here”?
            I read Bruce’s comments all the time–mostly they are thoughtful, incisive, with historical and local perspective, don’t always agree with him, but always they are interesting. They are not cruel, stupid, untrue,hate-mongering or divisive, as Carlson’s often are.

            • George Hollister April 27, 2023

              “Thoughtfulness” is in the eyes of the beholder, don’t you think?

  2. Eric Sunswheat April 26, 2023

    RE: My Troubles With Women (R. Crumb)

    —> April 25, 2023
    Men Are Sharing Little Things Women Do That Make Them Feel Valued And Loved (30 Answers)…

    For me it physical contact.
    My late wife was huge on physical contact. We were always holding hands, hand on a thigh when sitting, she would hook her arm around mine and press her body against mine when we’d be standing in line, random hugs for no reason, etc.

    Sometimes in bed she’d reach over and just and squeeze my arm and say “I love you” when we’d be going to sleep.

    My favorite was when I’d be driving. She had nice acryllic French tipped nails and she’d gently rub and scratch the back of my head and neck. Damn I miss that.

    It doesn’t even need to be sexual. Just gentle contact to let the other know you love them.

  3. Jim Shields April 26, 2023

    Supes Take 1st Step To Repeal Unlawful Public Records Ordinance
    By Jim Shields
    Mendocino County Observer

    As most of you know, for the past month I’ve written a series of columns, drawn from legal briefs I’ve prepared, outlining how County Ordinance 4705 (so-called Public Records Act Ordinance) violated the California Public Records Act, as well as a seminal California Supreme Court decision rendered a couple of years ago.
    At Tuesday’s, April 25 Board of Supervisors meeting, the Supes went into closed session for approximately 90 minutes to review the status of an ordinance that in light of the legal research I was providing the Supervisors, showed pretty conclusively that it was unlawful on its face.
    Saving the best for the last, Supe Ted Williams announced at the very end of Tuesday’s meeting that the Board will soon take formal action to repeal the Ordinance found by many, including yours truly, to be unlawful.
    Shortly before Board Chair gaveled Tuesday’s session to a close, Williams said, “I want the Board and public to know that Supervisor Mulheren and I will be bringing a proposed action to the Board to repeal Ordinance 4507, that’s the Public Records Act Ordinance, and we’ve asked for the soonest time available on scheduling (it on an agenda).”
    I want to thank Supervisors Ted Williams and Mo Mulheren for doing the right thing by joining with 3rd District Supervisor John Haschak to soon take action to strike down the illegal ordinance.
    I would like to think once the item to repeal the ordinance is placed on the agenda, that Supes Dan Gjerde and Glenn McGourty will join with their colleagues in a unanimous vote to repeal it.

    • Eric Sunswheat April 26, 2023

      Thanking THEM, for what, a financial burden coverup delay of Public Records access for months. I think not. Make them pay, as part of their continuing malfeasance in office, for collusion, including to violate state law. Some reporters would have legal standing, perhaps if they file.

  4. Craig Stehr April 26, 2023

    SRI RUDRAM (NAMAKAM) | Perfect Pronunciation & Swaras | Yajur Veda | K Suresh

  5. Michael Geniella April 26, 2023

    It says a lot about the current state of affairs when George Hollister compares Tucker Carlson to Editor Bruce Anderson. George, I usually skip right past your comments because back in the day I professionally had to listen to your relentless theories when you helped lead the local yellow ribbon crowd to greatness during the local timber wars. But I couldn’t pass on this declaration of yours. Tucker Carlson, born in SF to a socialite, is a fraud. Whatever one may think of Mr. Anderson, a fraud he is not.

    • George Hollister April 27, 2023

      Lots of logical fallacies there old man.

  6. Marmon April 26, 2023

    “It is dawning on mainstream figures like Anthony Fauci that their Covid policies were a public health disaster. Lots of us are angry about the mandates, the lockdowns, the censorship, the insanity. But we need to avoid the toxic quagmire of retribution and blame and focus on ensuring this never happens again. Clean up the regulatory agencies, get corporate money out of public health, and guarantee free, open, uncensored public and scientific discourse.”

    Robert F. Kennedy Jr @RobertKennedyJr


  7. Lazarus April 26, 2023

    The County Council advised, debated, and championed the selling of Public Information.

    ” Counsel Curtis introduced the measure because he said people may be abusing the CPRA’s access to free public records in Mendocino County, causing an undue burden to produce records that may take hours to gather.”
    Mendocino Voice

    What about him now that this lawsuit-in-the-making, flawed ordinance may be getting repealed? Just another example of poor lawyering…

  8. Marmon April 26, 2023


    Kings’ Coach Mike Brown said he jumped on his Harley motorcycle and went on a ride to decompress between games.


  9. Marmon April 26, 2023

    Tucker Carlson issued statement a few minutes tearing apart the “one party state” (Permanent Washington) while saying there is “hope” as long enough Americans are able to say and hear true things…


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