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Mendocino County Today: Friday, May 26, 2023

Cloudy | Anderson Valley | River Access | Navarro River | Retrofit Nap | AVUSD News | Coast Icon | Harbor Revitalization | Climbing Rose | Narcan Save | Kuny Cut | Catching Andru | Grocery Outlet | Dr Tesla | Ed Notes | AV History | Yesterday's Catch | AI Tale | SF Mural | Kuiper Fired | Transvantage | Dam Subsidies | Tam 1875 | Retirement Gap | No Algebra | Misdirected Obsession | Dirty Tricks | 18 Years | Elgin Cot | Ukraine | Without Violence | Putin Trolling | Love | Tina Turner | Lesbian Trucker | Cliffhouse | Seeker | Fishing Rhone | Universe Life | Charity

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SCATTERED AFTERNOON SHOWERS and thunderstorms will occur on a daily basis over the interior mountains today through early next week. Otherwise, periods of stratus will be common along the coast, and temperatures will be seasonable across the region. (NWS)

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Boonville, Looking East (photo by Bill Kimberlin)

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DURING TUESDAY’S ROUTINE RUBBERSTAMPING of the Environmental Impact Report on the Hendy Woods/Greenwood Bridge Replacement Project now set to begin in the Summer of 2025, County Transportation Director Howard Dashiell told the Supervisors that the project will take two construction seasons (i.e., two summers) to complete and that during that time beach access to the Navarro will be restricted for safety and security reasons. Dashiell thought that there were other Navarro River access points in the area that might be available but didn’t specify any.

(Mark Scaramella)

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Navarro River (Jeff Goll)

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Yesterday evening, Thursday, May 25, 2023, the Mendocino Coast Health Care District Board conducted its May meeting. While discussing the complexity of either going forward with a seismic retrofit of the coastal hospital or replacing it with a brand-new one, the District’s Interim Attorney Alexander Henson was caught on his Zoom camera to all appearances sleeping on what appeared to be an unmade bed.…

Judy Valadao: I think it is safe to say most of you who know me know how important it is to me for our hospital to be the best it can be. At tonight's Mendocino Health Care Board meeting the discussion was about building a new hospital or retrofitting the old one. In this video you can see how interested the Attorney (that you and I are paying for) was. This is not ok and yes it was during the meeting and yes I called in. Being fair the attorney says he was not sleeping.

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Dear Anderson Valley Community,

I wanted to take a moment to notify everyone again about the 7th-12th grade cell phone pouching policy at the Junior/Senior High for next year. This was not my decision, although I support it. Staff piloted the pouching of the cell phones in 7th and 8th grade this year and were so grateful for the additional socialization and engagement that it provided that as a staff they have decided to implement it school-wide next year. As stated previously, in an emergency, the phones can be accessed and there will be an opening device in each room. If a student uses a phone for an IEP/504 or other disability, the phone will not be pouched. I know you have read my message, but I thought it might help to hear from some of our staff about the benefits for your kids:

”I have serious concerns about how cell phone use is impacting cognitive and social development for young people. What we have been doing is not working. I am ready to try something new!”— Ali Cook

“Watching students play outside in 7th and 8th grade and interact with each other without a screen has been powerful. I think we will see a drastic shift in the amount of bullying, harassment, and students feeling present on campus next school year.” — Ms. Sarah Farber

 “The students use the cell phones as hotspots to bypass our networking protections, and in doing so they take up the very limited number of wifi channels. This ultimately degrades the internet experience for everyone. The legal doctrine ‘in loco parentis’ compels the district to ensure students are supervised while using the internet at school and cell phones bypass our ability to perform that duty.” — Wynne Crisman

“The students are constantly using social media on their phones. This leads to some students being unable to escape bullying behavior. Removing phones during school time will provide students with a break from social pressures.” — Stefani Ewing

“Students are easily preoccupied with their cell phones, taking their attention away from the learning and the learning environment. Unfortunately, many students frequently use their phones for non-educational purposes during class, such as texting, checking social media, or playing games.” — Ruby Suarez 

“Honestly, cell phones aren’t a significant problem in my classroom. My main motivation for wanting them pouched during the school day is so they can spend more of their free time socializing in person — too many of them spend passing periods, break and lunch alone on their phone and need to be pushed to interact in person and build their social skills.” —Nat Corey-Moran 

“I am SO tired of monitoring phone usage in my class. It would be a relief to not have this be an issue anymore. Even the proximity of a personal phone is a distraction for a student. It can be an addiction, and in my opinion, not a healthy one for any of us. I am so looking forward to our campus being cell-free next year. “— Kira Brennan

“As a person who originally stood against this proposal, I’m now beginning to see the merits of disallowing phones at school. I’ve always held the position that young people should be taught how to self-regulate their phone usage rather than banning them altogether, but the reality of the situation is that our current students are unable to limit their time on the phone on their own accord. We have a campus where students are largely glued to their screens, ignoring each other in the process, and it’s unhealthy for their social development if we let it continue at this rate. We want a society of confident social creatures rather than mindless zombies enslaved to their technology, and some reforms must be made in order to achieve that.” — Matt Bullington

The policy will be clearly defined in the Parent/Student handbook that will be distributed prior to school start. We appreciate your support as we try to promote higher engagement and socialization with all of our students. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at 707-684-1017. 

Sincerely yours,

Louise Simson, Superintendent, Anderson Valley Unifed School District

PS. A Little Gushing About Preschool… 

SO, I say it a million times, but I will say it again: things like this don’t happen in other districts.

Wednesday night was a beautiful preschool graduation ceremony. Dennis and Guy had set up the stage and chairs, the families filled the chairs, and the proudest graduates you ever saw filled the stage. Anita, Jennie, Lupita and Lucy guided them through a ceremony that as I watched, I reflected they were going to repeat as a class in 12 short years as high school seniors. That doesn’t happen in other districts.

Parents of the preschoolers shared with me that many of them were alumni of AV themselves. Many brothers and sisters of the preschoolers currently in high school filled the chairs. Many of those students, Eddie, Onawa, Carlos V., and Anthony O. broke down and stacked the chairs after the ceremony, so our maintenance staff wouldn’t have too. They did it to be kind, not because they were told to. That doesn’t happen in other districts (and if I left a name out, please know I am grateful). 

Anita celebrated her teaching partner Jennie’s retirement and the crowd showed their heartfelt appreciation for a job well done that invested in hundreds of children.

At the high school, Mr. Bullington and Ms. Farber are excited with the news that their yearbook has shipped. They will be planning a special roll out celebration for this edition. It is FREE for every student. I thank Leigh for shaking loose the money to make that happen at both sites. Things like yearbooks shouldn’t be about who can afford it and who can’t. My parents bought me two pairs of shoes a year, and if it was a good year for plastering, we were able to buy our school photos. Yearbooks were out of the question. The beautiful thing about this yearbook is that students worked hard to produce it under the guidance of Ms. Farber and Mr. Bullington. This doesn’t happen in other districts.

Today, I was complimenting Miss Celeste on the awards and graduation binders. You have never seen a more meticulous operation than Miss Celeste and Miss Mari have created for planning these special milestone events. Their planning is worthy of the CIA. This doesn’t happen in other districts.

Do we have work to do? Yes. Are state budgets tightening up? Yes. Can we still make those memories for kids that they will remember a lifetime. Yes.

I went to my son’s teacher induction ceremony yesterday. You know his story. Autistic, hard working, had a tough time passing the math portion of CSET, but his high school physics teacher personally tutored him until he crossed the finish line. At that ceremony, for a district I used to work for, I heard the words relationship, climate, culture, connection, and feed the learning….

My hope is over the next two years we will have a FEAST of learning. What we are doing right now with detentions and suspensions is not effective. We are trying to figure that out. BUT students and families need to reset the expectation that tardies and drug use are not acceptable, and together we develop that accountability and help kids develop understanding of their choices and make better ones. I don’t know the answer, but we need to figure it out. Suggestions are welcome!

We are wrapping up the year, we are all tired and a little wound up. BREATHE.

I am grateful to the preschool staff for the special memory tonight. That doesn’t happen in other districts.

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FORT BRAGG, Calif. – May 24, 2023 – Noyo Harbor District in partnership with West Business Development Center (West Center) is thrilled to announce the award of a $3.2 million grant to support the revitalization of Noyo Harbor in Fort Bragg. In February 2023, the West Center team worked in collaboration with Anna Neumann, Noyo Harbor District Harbormaster, on a grant submission in response to a Solicitation for Proposals for a CERF Implementation Pilot Program. Mary Anne Petrillo, West Center's CEO, is excited at the opportunities the grant will afford: "This is precisely the type of funding we've been working hard to obtain so that our work in the economic development sphere continues to improve the county’s economic outcomes. This Community Economic Resilience Funding is a game changer for the county and the local economy. It demonstrates that our county has a significant role to play in the California Blue Economy."

For more than 72 years, Mendocino County’s Noyo Harbor, an all-weather port receiving the most traffic of all ports between Bodega Bay and Humboldt Bay, has played a central role in the region’s commercial and recreational fishing industry. Consistently ranked in the top 10 commercial ports in California in terms of ex-vessel value of commercial fish landings, the harbor consistently provides important healthy food sources, enhanced careers, economic community benefits, and serves as an enduring part of the area’s cultural heritage. In 2019, the Noyo Harbor District adopted a Community Sustainability Plan, which created a long-term, strategic roadmap to help identify key priorities and allocate resources to support commercial fishing and broader harbor-related interests. In response to the Solicitation for Proposals, the District and West Center developed the Noyo Harbor Revitalization Project which has three goals. 

The first goal is to purchase and install a new energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable ice house (ice-making facility) for Noyo Harbor, a critical piece of infrastructure. The ice house will serve as the catalyst for Mendocino County’s new blue economy. This project will specifically benefit 80 commercial fishing vessels which are currently located in Noyo Harbor. These fishing vessels represent over 240 vessel-based jobs and another 60 land-based jobs. Anna Neumann anticipates positive changes for the harbor area: "With the support of this grant, over a two-year period, we expect to increase the current fleet roster by 10%, which will in turn increase the number of deckhands and crew working for living wages. These funds will enable the harbor to return to being a viable economic force, not just for Fort Bragg, but for the entire county." The new ice house building will consist of a pre-assembled ice plant housed in three 40-foot containers powered by solar and energy from the local energy aggregator. The structure is relatively portable and can be relocated if required by the effects of climate change, such as sea level rise. The provisions of the grant mean that Ms. Neumann has an aggressive schedule for the ice house project, which is projected to be complete by early 2025.

The second goal of the Revitalization Project is to create and sustain an innovative entrepreneurial marine-based business training program that will provide small business owners and emerging entrepreneurs with skill development and opportunities for revenue generation, peer-to-peer learning, and community partnerships to grow and expand their businesses. As Ms. Petrillo notes, "Every fishing vessel in Noyo Harbor is a unique small business. Training and learning experiences must be flexible, varied, and targeted to the needs of the moment. We are ready to develop a training program that will help these particular businesses expand their skills and develop new markets."

The third prong of the project is the Community Fish Market Incubator that will complement off-the-boat fish sales and provide additional sales outlets for the fishing fleet. The market is designed to break down the barriers between the fishing fleet and the community when it comes to buying fish off a boat and will act as an incubator for the fleet to test what they have learned during the training program and practice customer acquisition techniques. West Center in partnership with Noyo Harbor District will develop the community fish market and execute a marketing and branding plan to secure vendors each month as well as a sponsorship plan to support the continuation of the community fish market after the two-year pilot funding expires.

Anna Neumann is ready to roll out the project. "We have a timeline and with the funding lined up, we are ready to get to work. This revitalization project ties in with the Noyo Ocean Collective vision to make the Mendocino Coast a world class marine center that supports regenerative industries, vibrant fishery, and marine research. The completion of this project will enrich the lives of locals, the coastal experience of visitors, and bolster the local economy. I'm very grateful our project was awarded these vital funds."

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West Business Development Center is a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) funded non-profit business development center that provides reliable no-cost confidential counseling and relevant training programs to entrepreneurs throughout Mendocino and Lake County. West Center hosts the Mendocino Small Business Development Center and the Mendocino Women’s Business Center. Phone: 707 964 7571 Address: 345 N. Franklin St. Fort Bragg, CA

The Noyo Harbor District is a California Special District that manages and operates Noyo Harbor. Noyo Harbor is the only public marina on the Mendocino Coast and is home to the 256-slip marina on Noyo River. Noyo Harbor District, 19101 South Harbor Drive Fort Bragg, California 95437 Phone: (707) 964-4719 Fax: (707) 964-4710 Email:

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CLIMBING DEMOCRAT ROSES (photo via Val Muchowski)

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On Tuesday, May 23, 2023 at approximately 9:13 P.M., a Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputy was on-duty and traveling in the 200 block of North Orchard Avenue in the City of Ukiah.

During this time the Deputy was flagged down by a bystander who witnessed a 34-year-old adult male fall to the ground shortly before.

The Deputy approached the adult male who was lying on the ground near a business. The Deputy discovered the adult male was unresponsive and confirmed the existence of a pulse. Fearing the adult male was suffering the beginning stages of a potential lethal drug overdose, the Deputy administered a 4MG dosage of Narcan to the adult male.

The adult male immediately showed a physical improvement but still displayed an altered level of consciousness. During this time a small plastic baggie of suspected Fentanyl was found on the ground near the adult male's body.

Shortly thereafter, medical personnel arrived and began providing additional medical treatment. The adult male was subsequently transported to the Adventist Health Ukiah Valley hospital for further medical treatment.

In April 2019 the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office (MCSO) began to issue NARCAN® (Naloxone HCI) nasal spray dosage units to its employees as part of their assigned personal protective equipment. MCSO's goal is in protecting the public and officers from opioid overdoses. Access to naloxone is now considered vital in the U.S. The Center for Disease Control. At that time, the California Opioid Overdose Surveillance Dashboard reported Mendocino County ranking, per capita, 3rd in all opioid overdose deaths. Narcan nasal spray units are widely known to reverse opioid overdose situations in adults and children. Each nasal spray device contains a four milligram dose, according to the manufacturer. Naloxone Hydrochloride, more commonly known by the brand name NARCAN®, blocks the life-threatening effects of opioid overdose (both medications and narcotics) including extreme drowsiness, slowed breathing, or loss of consciousness.

The antidote can reverse the effects of an overdose for up to an hour, but anyone who administers the overdose reversal medication in a non-medical setting is advised to seek emergency medical help right away. The spray units can also be used by Public Safety Professionals who are unknowingly or accidentally exposed to potentially fatal amounts of fentanyl from skin absorption or inhalation.

The issuance of the Narcan nasal units, thus far, have been to employees assigned to the Field Services Division, Corrections Division and the Mendocino County Jail medical staff. Employees are required to attend user training prior to being issued the medication.

Sheriff Matthew C. Kendall would like to thank Mendocino County Public Health for providing the Narcan nasal units to the Sheriff's Office free of charge as part of the Free Narcan Grant from the California Department of Public Health.

Since the April 2019 issuance, there have now been (16) sixteen separate situations wherein Mendocino County Sheriff's Office Patrol Staff have administered NARCAN and saved the lives of (16) sixteen overdosing individuals in need of the lifesaving antidote medication.

In October 2021 the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office received a grant from the California Naloxone Distribution Project through the Department of Health Care Services to help maintain an inventory of the live saving antidote.

The 192 dosage units have been distributed to the Field Services Division and Corrections Division as previous inventories from Mendocino County Public Health have been exhausted.

Sheriff Matthew C. Kendall would like to thank the California Naloxone Distribution Project through the Department of Health Care Services for awarding the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office with the Naloxone grant to better help protect his employees and the public.

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DAN KUNY: Some of the nicest timber (Comptche) I've cut in a long time. Hendy Woods state park is a fun place to cut.

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On Wednesday, May 24, 2023, at about 1929 hours, Ukiah PD officers were dispatched to a report of a distressed pregnant female who described being choked by her ex-boyfriend, 23-year-old, Andru Campbell of Ukiah.

Andru was the restrained person in a domestic violence restraining order and was on probation out of Mendocino County for domestic violence charges. The victim received medical care at a local area hospital. 

Officers responded to the 200 block of Thomas St. and Andru was spotted as he hid to avoid police contact. Bystanders in the area affirmed the officers’ observations that the suspect had not left the location and nearby residents allowed officers to utilize their property for vantage points as well as to narrow the perimeter. Officers narrowed the location of the suspect down to a building on the 200 block of Thomas Street. After several failed attempts were made to convince the suspect to voluntarily comply, a warrant was granted for the search and arrest of Andru at that location. 

Officer’s provided knock and notice, a procedure of announcing officers’ presence and intention to force entry pursuant to a warrant, and received no response. They began to use tools to force entry and the occupants yelled out that they would comply. The occupants unlocked and opened the door and complied as they were given commands to exit the building at gunpoint. Cornelio Martinez (52), Vanessa Campbell (47), and Andru Campbell were all detained in handcuffs. 

Cornelio and Vanessas had local misdemeanor warrants and were issued citations to appear in court. Andru was lodged at the Mendocino County Jail for the above listed violations. 

Andru Campbell

UPD would like to thank the public’s cooperation and assistance with this investigation. As always, UPD’s mission is to make Ukiah as safe a place as possible. If you would like to know more about crime in your neighborhood, you can sign up for telephone, cellphone, and email notifications by clicking the Nixle button on our website;

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FORT BRAGG GROCERY OUTLET HEARING: The Fort Bragg City Council will conduct a hybrid public hearing on the Grocery Outlet Market project at a special meeting on Monday, June 5, 2023 at 5:00 PM The hearing will be live at Town Hall (363 N. Main Street) and can also be accessed via Zoom with the information to be posted on the agenda. 

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LOCAL FAMILY PHYSICIAN, PETER CHO, M.D. Completes a 8169-Mile Cross Country Adventure to check off a bucket list item and to experience the latest version of Tesla’s Full Self Driving (FSD) Software, on the open road.

Dr. Peter Cho, a respected family physician from Ukiah, California, recently completed an extraordinary cross-country adventure spanning an astounding 8169 miles in just 13 days. Setting off from Ukiah on the morning of April 10, 2023, his final destination was the iconic West Quoddy Head Lighthouse in Lebec, Maine. Besides checking off a bucket list item of visiting the easternmost point in the continental United States he wanted to experience the latest version of Tesla’s Full Self-Driving (FSD) Software on the open road.

His trip to the east coast took him through a wide variety of locations including Death Valley, Las Vegas, vast mid-West plains, Appalachian Mountains, the east coast seaboard, and the scenic Great Lakes, experiencing the contrast between tranquil nature and bustling urban life. Unexpected difficulties included having to drive through torrential rainstorms in Pennsylvania and the closure of the transCanadian highway due to blizzard conditions. The Tesla Full Self Driving (FSD) was able to handle >95% of the driving duties allowing the tourist/driver to mainly supervise and enjoy the scenery. Throughout his adventure, Dr. Cho traveled through a total of 18 U.S. states and 5 Canadian provinces. In order to minimize charging time he jumped from one Tesla charging station to another, typical charging stop took 15 minutes to add about 100 miles of driving range to his Tesla Model Y. His cost for electric vehicle charging was just under $1000 for his entire trip. The cost in a comparable gas SUV would have been almost double that amount.

Reflecting on his incredible adventure, Dr. Cho shared, "We are so fortunate to live in such a scenic country full of amazing people and tremendous potential. The future may be scary for some but remember the future can be what we make it to be."

As news of Dr. Peter Cho's remarkable cross-country adventure spreads, his story will undoubtedly continue to inspire individuals to embrace sustainable transportation, explore the beauty of diverse destinations, and seize the opportunity to embark on their own extraordinary journeys.

Dr. Peter Cho is a highly regarded family physician who started a medical practice in Ukiah in 1995. He is known by some as “Dr. Pickleball” for his devotion to the sport. His other passions include photography and road cycling. He can be reached at or on twitter @peteryoungcho1. This press release was written by ChatGPT (mostly).

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HAVING ARRIVED in the early 70s with that first wave of back to the landers I, too, landed in Mendocino County, but not for the inconveniences of dusty outback shacks and the big naked piles of solstice boogies, but to cultivate urban delinquents who I, and my naive comrades, assumed would be less delinquent under the remote redwoods than they'd been under the streetlights. Wrong!

ALTHOUGH I shared the end-of-western civ assumptions of many of my fellow urban transplants, I didn't share their countercultural sameness, their lazy mysticism, their non-verbal grunting in lieu of conversation, their casual oppression of their “old ladies,” their deliberate domestic squalor, their ritualistic dope consumption, their feral child rearing practices, their deadbeat-ism, their anti-intellectualism, their timid politics — the whole tiresome hippie package, frankly. But there they were in 1970, and here they are in 2023 celebrating themselves. I had to have a look.

EVERY TIME I pull into the Grace Hudson Museum grounds — much improved unto bio-beauty under the gifted gardener Andrea Burrington — I think of that famous photo of Jack London standing in his underwear in Grace Hudson's living room, a photograph belying the common assumption that the Painter Lady was a model of Victorian rectitude. I'm looking forward to a Museum exhibit called, Grace and Jack, Socialist Artists Meet in Turn of the Century Ukiah.

I RECOGNIZED many of the names of back to the land artists and ancillary persons involved in the exhibit, having either known them or seen their names over the half century we've shared the Mendo vastness, and I wasn't surprised that the lead exhibit was the work of the truly gifted woodworker of national reputation, my friend and Boonville neighbor, Tom McFadden, and right behind him, the equally celebrated David Dart, creator of truly remarkable stringed instruments and a long-time resident of Navarro. I've always admired the art of Bob Ross, whose large oil of the bar at the Caspar Inn perfectly captures the iconic Inn under the entrepreneurial genius of Peter Lit. No place like it before or since. I wished the posters of Kathy Shearn were larger to better catch her gift, but all-in-all the exhibit is interesting and, mercifully, not a macrame included.

Naked Honest, 1976, by Doug Volz

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by A.O. Carpenter (1914)

According to Indian tradition, Mendocino County was once a vast mesa, level and waterless in summer, but the coyote (their representative of power and energy) caused an upheaval into its now broken state. Winter rains filled the chasms, washed down the silt, overflowed, and broke out from one to another, forming lakes and rivers, which former eventually became the present valleys. The soil is determined by the character of that of the surrounding hills. Some are sandy loam, and some the black loam approaching the adobe. Both are rich in the qualities which make for heavy production of cereals or root crops. There is much red soil in the hills, evidencing volcanic origin, and this is unsurpassed for fruit and vine.

Anderson Valley is located in the Coast Range, almost all in and embracing the whole of the watershed of the Navarro River, and a small portion of the headwaters of Dry Creek on the southeast end. It is 30 miles in length. Breadth varies from eight to twenty miles. The arable land at present under cultivation nowhere exceeds more than a mile and for the most part, only a half mile in width. Much more could be cultivated, but so far has been deemed more valuable for pasture than for the plow. The southern part of the township is detached from the northern part because the main branch of the river, Rancheria Creek, has no bottom land to speak of for some miles of its course opposite Boonville, but further south on its extreme headwaters, it again affords some tillable land. The valley soil is a rich wash loam immediately along the creek bottoms. The bench lands are either black clover land or gravelly loam, while the pasture lands proper, on the hills, partake of the nature of both the last mentioned soils, while the chemissal and brush lands are generally rocky and sterile. Exceptions in these latter may be found where the soil is a rich red volcanic debris, that makes the best of orchard and vineyard land.

The climate of Anderson is a compromise between the hot torrid inner valleys and the cold, foggy coast section. It usually has a nice sea breeze in the afternoon, and often foggy mornings, which revive the vegetation in the dry summer months and restrain the frosts in the winter.

The various grains luxuriate here, except corn, which is not especially successful, probably from the coolness induced by the fog. Hops succeed well and give a good yield on the best bottom land. Fruit grows remarkably well on much of the bench land and lower hills.

Early Settlement…

So far as the dim past can be explored, Walter Anderson seems to be the first white man who really settled in Anderson intending to make it his home, and that as early as 1851. He came from Sonoma County, as most of the interior early settlers seem to have done, and located what was afterwards known as the Rowles place, on the west side of the valley, about one mile northwest of Boonville. He sold the place to Joseph Rowles in 1858 and moved away. J. D. Ball and family arrived in 1852, and settled on the opposite side of the valley, on plateau land, and was the first to put out an extensive orchard, which is still bearing profusely. In 1855-6-7 closely following each other came William Prather, John Gschwend, J. S. Smalley, Oscar Carey, Joseph Gschwend, James Burgess, Henry Wade, Frank Buster, A. Guntley, John Gossman, John Conrad, A. Braden, J. Shields, W. W. Boone, A. Elliott and H. Stevens. In the following few years R. H. Rawles, J. A. Jamison, J. O. McSpadden, J. McGimsey, Alex McDonald, J. W. McAbee, C. Prather and R. H. York. The first attempt at town building was about a mile from the present town of Boonville. John Burgot built a hotel, Sam Stevens a blacksmith shop and Levi V. Harrison a store. Quite a large stock of goods was also placed in a two-story building (where Robert Rowles has lived for some years) by Wintzer & Welle, but all of these died out in a short time. In 1864 Alonzo Kendall built a hotel at what is now Boonville and called the place Kendall’s City. Levi & Straus moved their store here, soon selling out to W. W. Boone, who succeeded in giving his name to the town, Mr. Kendall having removed to Manchester. 

Access to the valley was yet very difficult on the road from Cloverdale, and by private subscription John Gschwend attempted to build a road from Boonville to Ukiah, the county seat, in 1867. When about half done, the subscriptions failed, and Gschwend obtained a franchise for its completion as a toll road in 1868.

Within the last four or five years nearly the whole of Gschwend’s old road has been abandoned for better grade, though the general route has been followed. In 1869-70 a road was surveyed and soon after worked after a fashion from Anderson Valley to Point Arena, but the grades were so steep it has never been used for aught but light teams, except at each end, where the downgrade favors the hauling of timber either way. 

To John Gschwend also belongs the principal credit for the road built over Navarro ridge connecting Anderson Valley with the coast. This was “swamped” in 1861-2 and graded immediately after and for many years was the only road from the coast part of the county to the outside world. The Gschwends, Guntleys and Gossmans were Swiss, and formed the settlement at the lower end of the valley that was long known as “Guntleys” and later as Christine, for a daughter of John Gschwend’s.

Andrew Guntley erected a distillery and brewery which flourished until about 1806, when the government tax caused the abolition of the establishments. These Swiss all planted orchards which still flourish, and the orchard area might be extended tenfold with profit. There are several fruit driers in the main valley and much fruit is shipped to the coast section for home consumption, but little or none has been shipped to the more extensive markets of the bay area, except dried. In 1908 250 tons of dried pears were shipped.

The western and northern part of the township is heavily timbered with redwood, fir, tan oak, madrone, laurel, as forest, plus manzanita, blue blossom and chemissal brush covering quite a large section. The redwood and fir have been destroyed largely in the northern part of the township, while only desultory attempts have been made upon its area elsewhere. 

To John Gschwend belongs the honor of building the first saw mill, in 1856. At that time there were no roads leading into or out of the valley, and access to the township was had only by skirmishing over the hills from one opening to another with ox teams, rough locking down the steep hills, and doubling teams up the mountain. That first mill was built on Gschwend’s homestead on a branch of the main fork of the Navarro, run by water. Previous to that date the settlers’ houses were mostly built of logs, shakes split from the pliant, straight-grained redwood, or lumber made by the toilsome whipsaw mill. Some years later it was supplied with steam power and more machinery for making dressed lumber. In 1864 a grist mill addition supplied the neighborhood with flour. In 1875 fire destroyed Gschwend’s mill, and as the timber was nearly all cut off contiguous to the site, it was not rebuilt.

In 1877 Thomas Hiatt built a sawmill some four miles up the valley from Gschwend’s, with a capacity of 8,000 board feet per day. He soon cut down the timber convenient and moved the mill away. In 1876 the Clow brothers built a mill on the west side of the valley, about four miles from Boonville which used up the timber on 250 acres, running for twenty years. Its capacity was 12,000 board-feet per day. It was then sold and moved away.

In 1878 H. O. Irish erected the fourth mill a mile or two further down the valley, but it was destroyed by fire very soon after it began running. In 1896 August Wehrspon built a mill at Ornbaun Valley, a detached upland valley near Yorkville, with a capacity of 20,000 board feet per day. This mill was in a fine body of timber, purchasable at $1 per thousand. By the terms of the contract the mill was required to cut a specified amount of lumber each year.

Timber raised in value, but the mill owner failed one year to cut the required amount, and was ousted by suit at court. The mill was moved to the old Bonnet place west of Boonville, where they cut a little lumber, and still stands there, although the main body of the timber has passed into the hands of speculators.

The mill cut about 16 million board-feet in all. In 1904 Bledsoe built a shingle mill at Peachland, a settlement on the ridge east of Anderson Valley, of about 20,000 board feet capacity. It was run about three years, and since then has remained idle. It is now owned by Bledsoe & Daugherty.

Access to the township is attained by the road from Cloverdale, 30 miles distant, or from Ukiah, 24 miles, or from Albion by road, or railroad, to Wendling, a mill town, a few years old. This mill was built on the promise of a railroad, but before even residences were finished for its superintendent and foremen, work was suspended, the railroad not materializing.

Suit was instituted, or threatened against the Santa Fe company and compromised, and the logging road from the Albion mill was pushed through to the mill, and two miles further up the valley. The product is railed down to the Albion and there transshipped to sea vessels. This road has been surveyed through to a junction with the Northwestern at Healdsburg, and will soon be pushed through, as there is a fine body of timber tributary to it. The Wendling property has passed into the hands of Hickey & Co., and the town name changed to Navarro.

Yorkville, in the southern part of the township, is a small hamlet of a few houses, located on Rancheria Creek, the principal tributary, or rather the main head of the Navarro River. It was named after its founder, R. H. York, who lived there many years. It has a post office and a hotel has long been maintained by the Hiatt family owning the ranch.

Boonville, about the center of the township, is the oldest village in it. It consists of two hotels, two stores, two blacksmith shops, a post office, a drug store, and eight or ten residences, a church and school house and a barber shop. There used to be two saloons, but the school district voted dry some years ago and they are things of the past.

Philo, nine miles down the valley, is a small hamlet of two stores, a blacksmith shop, Methodist Episcopal church, school house, post office, and two or three residences, near enough to be included in the town. Here the four horse stages from Cloverdale are split into two, one proceeding to Greenwood on the coast, the other five miles down the valley to Navarro. 

Navarro is essentially a mill town, and was unbroken forest until the lumber company pitched on it as a base of operations. The mill has recently changed hands and its product will eventually find its outlet by rail to Healdsburg, and on to San Francisco and east. The mill was erected in 1905, with a capacity of 60,000 board feet of lumber and 100,000 shingles. It was run by the Stearns Lumber Co. with profit even with the long haul and rehandling of its output. The town did contain two stores, one livery stable, three hotels with bars, two hotels without bars, one saloon, one blacksmith shop, one restaurant, one barber shop, one photo gallery, 45 residences and a post office, being the end of a mail route in that direction. The saloons have been discontinued on account of the election voting the district dry.

Many fine residences have been erected in Anderson Valley in the last ten years and much progress made in fruit culture. The climate is undoubtedly the finest in the county, and only three failures on account of frost have been known since its first settlement. The earthquake of 1906 did not seem to affect this section as much as the one experienced in 1898, which opened considerable gaps in the earth at the northern end of the valley but without much damage. In the past few years roads have been built connecting the valley with Hopland and Fish Rock, both starting from Yorkville. Several mineral excitements have had their rise and fall, but none of the discoveries have so far proved of present value.

There have been several lodges instituted in the valley, but at present all have lapsed. It has had its quota of fires. The hotel has been burned and rebuilt; Ruddick’s store burned in April, 1913; Johnson’s store at Philo burned September 18, 1913, and there have been several residences burned. In July, 1901, a threshing boiler exploded, killing two men.

There are several fruit dryers in the valley, J. D. Ball erecting the first in 1890, Studebaker about the same time and others have followed. There have been two or three small saw mills on Rancheria and Dry creek, but they have passed away. The road to Point Arena was improved from time to time until in 1890 it was made available for freighting to a limited extent.

A mail route formerly extended through the valley from Cloverdale to Navarro, sixty miles, but has been cut off at Wendling, while a cross mail has been established from Philo to Greenwood, twenty-one miles. On the through route in 1904 there were sixty-seven individual mail pouches used.

The timber has nearly all passed into the hands of mill owners or speculators. In 1909 Hickey & Standish bought 3500 acres west of Boonville, and sold 12,000 acres of their holdings to the Santa Fe. During 1913 much bark was hauled to Cloverdale by motor trucks; 8700 pounds at a load, two trips per day, making 120 miles travel. Much has also been shipped by way of Albion. For years previous it had been hauled by teams to Cloverdale and Ukiah.

Some notable deaths have occurred among the old settlers. Among them may be mentioned John Gossman, 88 years, November 20, 1898, who came to the valley in 1856; S. W. Knowles, September 25, 1911, 89 years of age, settled on Dry Creek, 1858-9; R. H. Rowles, ex-County Supervisor, November 9, 1911, 66 years, settled in 1858; W. L. Wallace, August 27, 1883, settled in 1857, and Mrs. John Conrad, who came to the valley in 1858. died July 12, 1914, at the age of 101 years.

The several school districts voted for a union high school, and a rough building was erected last year and is now in use.

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, Thursday, May 25, 2023

Azbill, Campbell, Gottsimmons, Hall

FOLEY AZBILL, Covelo. Probation revocation.

ANDRU CAMPBELL, Ukiah. Domestic battery, petty theft, protective order violation, resisting, probation revocation.

CHADLEY GOTTSIMMONS, Redwood Valley. Disorderly conduct-intoxicated by drugs&alcohol.

CRAY HALL, Lakeport/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

Joaquin, Larvie, Martinez

SYLVESTER JOAQUIN JR., Covelo. Domestic battery, child endangerment, offenses while on bail.

ALDEN LARVIE, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

CLEMENCIO MARTINEZ, Ukiah. Disobeying court order, failure to appear, probation revocation.

Moe, Rodriguez, Staser, Watts

JUSTIN MOE, Willits. Parole violation.

JOSE RODRIGUEZ, Redwood Valley. Arson of property.

CHARLES STASER, Covelo. Failure to appear.

THEODORE WATTS IV, Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

* * *


Reminded of the existence of ChatGPT. I went to my account, instructed ChatGPT: to “write a poem about the following news article.” And I inserted the entire text of the section in the same Mendocino County Today about the fires in Fort Bragg. Here's the result, which took like three seconds to appear:

ChatGPT wrote:

A tale of Fort Bragg, a town ablaze

Where justice went up in smoke


The courthouse and library, victims of fire

A diversionary tactic, cunning and dire


The perps were known

Yet no charges were laid, the truth left alone


The police chief boldly claimed

"I pass the arsonists daily"

But the ATF and FBI in their windbreakers bright

Strutted around town finding no insight


Months went by, the investigation in vain

The feds passing their findings, causing disdain.

And lo and behold, the girlfriend was a spy

Reporting to her lover, oh my, oh my!


But wait, it gets worse, the evidence gone

Boxes disappeared, like a magician's con

No outcry, no demand for the truth to be told


DA Massini's disinterest a slap in the face

Allowing the statute of limitations to erase

The man behind it all, a cocaine kingpin

A cast of characters fit for the big screen

The logistics man, a corpse robber obscene


A 400-pound janitor, the fat man's disguise

Cleaning banks, dealing coke, what a surprise

And on that fateful night, gasoline in tow

Torches ignited a sinister show


Crooked bank managers and insurance salesmen sly

Hand in hand with the criminals

DA Massini and the Fire Marshal's plea

No jurisdiction, they claimed, just let it be


So let this be a lesson, a cautionary tale

In a world where power and influence prevail

Maybe the truth, though hidden away

One day will emerge, shedding light on that dark day

* * *

Mission Street, San Francisco (Jeff Goll)

* * *


by Jerry McDonald

Longtime play-by-play announcer Glen Kuiper was fired Monday, 17 days after using a racial epithet on the air leading into an A’s broadcast on May 5 in Kansas City.

The news came from a statement issued by a spokesperson from NBC Sports California:

“Following an internal review, the decision has been made for NBC Sports California to end its relationship with Glen Kuiper, effective immediately. We thank Glen for his dedication to Bay Area baseball over the years.”

According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the decision was based on a variety of factors, including information uncovered in the internal review.

The dismissal was not reported on the A’s Pregame Live show or postgame show with Brodie Brazil and Dave Stewart, nor did play-by-play man Vince Cotroneo and analyst Dallas Braden update viewers as to Kuiper’s status on the lead-in to Monday night’s road broadcast in Seattle.

In the evening, Kuiper released a statement saying the use of the word was “unintentional,” terming it a “terrible and but honest mispronunciation . . . I wish the Oakland A’s and NBC Sports would have taken into consideration my 20-year career, my solid reputation, integrity and character, but in this current environment traits like integrity and character are no longer considered.”

The A’s declined comment, deferring to NBC Sports California.

Kuiper, 60, was suspended May 6, one day after using the epithet in place of the word “negro” in reference to what he called a “phenomenal” visit along with Braden to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, where the A’s were visiting the Royals.

During the sixth inning of the May 5 broadcast, Kuiper issued an on-air apology without specifically referring to what he said.

“A little bit earlier in the show, I said something, didn’t come out quite the way I wanted it to,” Kuiper said. “And I just wanted to apologize if it sounded different than what I meant it to be said. And like I said, I just wanted to apologize for that.”

The Athletics responded with a statement denouncing Kuiper’s comment, with no reference to whether they believed it to be intentional or a misstatement. The following day, NBC Sports California, which employs Kuiper, confirmed the suspension to media outlets without making a statement. Kuiper followed with an apology issued through the network.

“I could not be more sorry and horrified by what I said,” Kuiper said in the statement. “I hope you will accept my sincerest apologies.”

The incident went viral on social media, eliciting strong opinions both in defense of Kuiper as well as calling for his dismissal.

Kuiper is the younger brother of Giants analyst and former big leaguer Duane Kuiper and Giants television producer Jeff Kuiper.

Bob Kendrick, the president of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, said Monday in a phone interview that he was disappointed to see Kuiper fired because he made a mistake, albeit a very sensitive one. Kendrick, who is Black, said that Kuiper called him and apologized.

“He showed and demonstrated his remorse for something that he felt like was a word he had never used before,” Kendrick said. “Again, I have to take him at his word. And I’m really disappointed by the news. I hoped it wouldn’t come to that. I know how much pressure is put on when things like this happen.”

Stewart, the former A’s pitcher who works on NBC California broadcasts and is also Black, followed Kendrick’s original tweet on May 6 asking for forgiveness with one of his own:

“I know Glen, have worked with him over the years. I believe it was an unfortunate mistake. He, as we all deserve a second chance.”

Other Black sports voices weren’t as forgiving of the epithet. ESPN analyst Ryan Clark tweeted:

“Had to listen a few times! Can’t be, Huh? His co-host didn’t even flinch. They called it that all day. They just forgot they were being filmed this time. No shock, no nothing.”

Braden, sitting to the right of Kuiper at the time, responded on May 8 to the perception that he didn’t react in the moment to his broadcast partner’s epithet.

“The nuances of live television mean that sometimes we, as broadcasters, miss some of what you, our audience, see and hear,” Braden said on Twitter.

Braden expressed “support and encouragement to my broadcast partner as he furthers his work in understanding the impact and hurt resulting from his unfortunate mistake.”

Giants announcer Mike Krukow, Duane Kuiper’s broadcast partner and longtime friend, said the week after the incident on KNBR that he’s known the Kuiper family for 40 years and said he would stand by Glen Kuiper “because of my belief in their values.”

Regarding Kuiper’s use of the epithet, Krukow said, “Glen Kuiper horribly misspoke. And because of that, there were a lot of people that were hurt. And there were a ton of people that were disappointed.”

Krukow referred to the forgiveness plea from Kendrick and Stewart and said, “I wonder if it’s even appropriate for me – a white guy to forgive another white guy – for misspeaking in such a racially insensitive way.”

Glen Kuiper was in his 20th season doing A’s play-by-play. A 10th-round draft pick by the Cincinnati Reds in 1982 out of Indian Hills Community College in Centerville, Iowa, Kuiper didn’t initially sign and attended the University of New Orleans.

He played minor league baseball in Spokane, Washington, in the Padres organization in 1985 and for the Erie Cardinals in the New York Penn League in 1986. He moved to the Bay Area in the late 1980s, where he studied broadcasting at San Francisco State.

Kuiper first began working on A’s broadcasts in 2004 as an on-field correspondent and fill-in announcer. He became the primary television play-by-play announcer in 2006. He did occasional work on Fox TV broadcasts as a sideline supporter as well as with the San Jose Sharks of the NHL.

Kuiper was born in Racine, Wisconsin, and grew up on a dairy farm along with his brothers and one sister.


* * *

* * *


by Dan Walters

The Klamath River begins in Oregon, draining the eastern slope of the Cascade Mountains, and slices through the northwestern corner of California before flowing into the Pacific Ocean.

The Colorado River begins in Colorado, draining the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains, before meandering southwesterly and emptying into Mexico’s Sea of Cortez – if there’s any water left after California and other states have tapped the river for irrigation and municipal supplies.

Although hundreds of miles apart, the two rivers share a common malady: So much of their waters were impounded or diverted that they became unhealthy.

The two rivers also share something else: Taxpayers, rather than those who manipulated the rivers for profit, are footing the bill for restoring their flows.

After decades of debate and negotiation, work has just begun to dismantle the first of four hydropower dams that plug the Klamath and block migration of salmon, steelhead and other species. One of the dams is more than a century old.

The dams’ owner, PacificCorp, initially said it would seek relicensing of the four dams. But amid fierce opposition from environmentalists, fishermen (and women) and Native American tribes, and after billionaire Warren Buffett acquired the company, it agreed to remove them.

It’s unlikely that the dams could have been relicensed, given their age and the opposition, so the company’s posture was probably a bluff, but one that worked. After Buffett bought PacificCorp in 2005, his close friend, then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, persuaded the Legislature to set aside $250 million in state bond funds ($500 million with interest) to underwrite removal.

PacificCorp is providing about $215 million while Oregon, the primary user of the dams’ hydropower, is providing just a few million dollars. Why California taxpayers should provide such a huge share of removal costs remains an unanswered question.

On Monday, once again after protracted and often acrid negotiations, the federal Bureau of Reclamation announced a multi-state deal to reduce water diversions from the Colorado River by some 3 million acre-feet over the next three years, thereby staving off a crisis that threatens the viability of two immense upstream reservoirs, Lake Mead and Lake Powell.

Three-fourths of the reduction would be underwritten by more than $1 billion in federal payments to diverters in Arizona, Nevada and California, while the remainder would be uncompensated voluntary cuts.

The Imperial Irrigation District, in California’s southeastern corner, is the largest diverter, with a legal right to more than 3 million acre-feet of water a year, and thus will receive a large chunk of the federal money. Not surprisingly, the district praised the new agreement.

The deal was reached after the Bureau of Reclamation threatened to impose cuts on Imperial and other diverters to prevent the two reservoirs from becoming inoperable due to years of drought.

“California has stepped up to make significant cuts to water usage and now, this historic partnership between California and other Lower Basin states will help maintain critical water supply for millions of Americans as we work together to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Colorado River System for decades to come,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a statement.

While the agreement addresses the immediate crisis on the Colorado, the many stakeholders will also be negotiating a supposedly permanent pact on how its water will be divvied up and Imperial and other California diverters will be seeking even more federal money to offset their losses.

Both Klamath and Colorado situations could, and probably should, have been resolved without taxpayers on the hook to compensate those whose actions had caused their problems in the first place. But, as the old saying goes, money talks while bullshit walks.


* * *

Mount Tamalpais (1875)

* * *


by Cynthia Murray

I’ll be turning 67 at the end of this month. I’d love to be able to retire on my birthday. I’d celebrate by spending the afternoon at the mall with my daughter and then start planning little trips to visit relatives.

But even after working for our nation’s largest employer — Walmart — for 22 years, I can’t afford to retire any time soon.

Walmart does offer a 401(k) with matching funds. But with a high-deductible health plan and at my wage of just $16.83 an hour, I haven’t been able to save much at all for what should be my “golden years.”

Lots of my fellow Walmart associates are in the same boat. I know this from talking to my co-workers — and — because companies have to report how many people in their 401(k) plan have zero balances. At Walmart, 46 percent have not one dime in their accounts.

The situation for my top boss, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, could not be more different. Would you believe he has more than $169 million in his company retirement account?

These huge gaps are not even unusual. I just read a new report by the Institute for Policy Studies and Jobs With Justice. They list 22 executives who have so much money in their retirement accounts that they are set to get monthly retirement checks worth more than what their typical workers make in an entire year.

What’s more, these accounts are allowed to grow to massive proportions tax-free — far beyond what any of their workers could legally contribute to a 401(k).

That is, if workers could afford to contribute in the first place. At most of the companies on this list, including Hyatt, Home Depot, Target, Chipotle, Tyson Foods, McDonald’s, and Petco, more than a third of employees with 401(k) plans have zero balances.

It’s just not right for CEOs to have such huge nest eggs while many of their employees have to put off retirement. Seriously — who’s really putting the sweat and blood into these companies? Without frontline workers like my coworkers and me, there would be no profits for those CEOs.

Walmart founder Sam Walton understood this. He’s often quoted saying, “If you want the people in the stores to take care of the customers, you have to make sure you’re taking care of the people in the stores.”

What can CEOs do to take care of their frontline workers? They need to raise wages, give us at least two weeks paid leave, and ensure we have affordable health care benefits. That way workers can stay healthy, put food on our tables, keep roofs over our heads — and save money for retirement.

CEOs and other high-earners should also contribute more to Social Security so we can expand benefits for low-income families.

Right now people making more than $1 million a year stop paying the payroll taxes that fund this critical retirement benefit in February while most ordinary workers have to pay all year. They should pay all year like the rest of us. And Congress should scrap those tax-free executive retirement accounts and put the savings into Social Security.

I don’t have big fantasies for my retirement — no sailing around on yachts or staying at fancy resorts. What’s really important to me is my family.

I’ve missed so many holidays and other gatherings over the years because I had to work. Now I would simply like to make up for that by spending more time with relatives, including my grandson, who just graduated from college.

In the world’s richest country, it doesn’t seem like a lot to ask.

(Cynthia Murray is a Walmart Associate in Maryland and a board member of United for Respect, a nonprofit labor advocacy organization.)

* * *

* * *

ON-LINE COMMENT RE PREDATORS: This, everyone, is what a child predator ACTUALLY looks like. He looks like your brother. Your grandpa. Your clergyman. The nice neighbor down the street always helping out overworked single parents. They’re not flashy drag queens… the last thing a predator wants is to be noticeable. They groom (look the word up and stop misusing it) parents right along with the children. There are plenty of wonderful and safe adults who fill all the roles I’ve mentioned but they are also full of those who crave access to children for malicious reasons. Why do these people keep getting away with it?? BULL SHIT distractions by hysterical people obsessed with drag queens and who’s using what bathroom. This misdirected obsession is not backed up by ANY statistics, it’s only running unhinged with unfounded fear of being adults feeling “uncomfortable” and taking advantage of that to create unfounded and misdirected fear.

* * *


Did somebody do a Donald Segretti on DeSantis?

— Jim Luther

* * *

18 YEARS? Stewart Rhodes, the leader of the Oath Keepers, was jailed for 18 years on Thursday for leading a mob to storm the Capitol on January 6. The 58-year-old's sentence is the longest handed down to the hundreds of Donald Trump supporters who ransacked the seat of US democracy on January 6, 2021. Rhodes was found guilty of seditious conspiracy in November. Judge Amit P. Mehta told Rhodes: 'You sir, present an ongoing threat and a peril to this country, to the republic and the very fabric of our democracy ... The moment you are released you will be prepared to take up arms against your government.' Mehta described Rhodes, a Yale-graduate who founded the Oath Keepers in 2009, as a disturbingly charismatic figure who convinced dozens of members of the far-right group to travel to Washington with the deliberate intention of stoking unrest. 'They too are victims, victims of the lies, the propaganda, the rhetoric and ultimately the intention that you conveyed,' Mehta said. Rhodes remained defiant as he stood before the judge claiming he was, like Trump, a 'political prisoner' and pledging 'to expose the criminality of this regime'. His attorney said he will appeal the conviction. (Daily Mail)

* * *

Here’s an interesting photo of professional basketball player Elgin Baylor at Camp Roberts during his 3-week summer training in 1961. He was assigned to the 63rd ARCOM of the US Army Reserve at the time. At 6’ 5” he found it difficult fitting into a normal bunk, so engineers of the 63rd soon solved the problem by welding two bunks end-to-end (we wish we still had them for display at the museum!). He played 14 seasons as a forward in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers. Baylor was a gifted shooter, a strong rebounder, and an accomplished passer who was best known for his trademark hanging jump shot. He was the No. 1 draft pick in 1958, NBA Rookie of the Year in 1959, 11-time NBA All-Star, and a 10-time member of the All-NBA first team. He’s regarded as one of the game's all-time greatest players. In 1977, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

* * *


Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin said his fighters have begun their withdrawal from Bakhmut as they hand the eastern city to Russia's military after capturing it in a months-long battle. Ukrainian officials have insisted this week that pockets of resistance remain in the city.

Ukrainian officials said a new wave of drone attacks launched by Russia overnight at multiple cities, including Kyiv, had failed to reach the intended targets.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov has said that Ukraine was behind the drone attacks on the building on May 3. US intelligence has indicated that a Ukrainian group may have launched the operation, sources told CNN, while Kyiv has denied involvement. 

Russia's defense minister called the cross-border raid near Belgorod a "terrorist act," and said Moscow will respond "extremely harshly" to any further attempts.

* * *

* * *


The Russian President’s new “List of 500” sanctioned Americans looks like a Russiagate-media honey trap.

by Matt Taibbi

Two days ago a friend forwarded a Bloombergarticle and a note: “And so it begins anew.” The headline, “The Kremlin Offers a Trump-Putin Ticket for 2024,” suggested a third consecutive presidential election cycle draped in conspiracy theory. Do we call it a trequel? A threequel?Russiagate III: Lie Hard With a Vengeance. 

The piece by Andreas Kluth, picked up by the Washington Post, begins:

The bizarre and unsavory strongman bromance between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump continues. If you’re a MAGA Republican and not having second thoughts by now, something’s wrong with you. 

Normally with these articles you can just fill in the blanks. You put “Trump and Putin are gay for each other” in the lede, throw a “sow division” in the body somewhere, then it’s plot-complications-unity-derp before dismounting to, “In sum, honest Republicans face a hard choice.” For examples of the genre, see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, etc. Just as they have Nathan’s hot dog eating contests, media will someday have timed “Write Russiagate copy” competitions, maybe not on Coney Island but Park Slope or the Vineyard.

It’s usually not necessary to read the middles of these stories, but this one is interesting. Kluth is spun up at new sanctions announced by Russia’s Foreign Ministry. These were in response to 300 new sanctions just issued by the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), dovetailing with 200 new “individuals, entities, vessels, and aircraft.” The latter is sobering and includes a Minister in Tatarstan overseeing “child re-education camps.” One wouldn’t presume to joke about it, or any of the economic and human rights sanctions imposed during the war.

This new Russian government response, however, looks like a media prank, designed to suck in the likes of Kluth.

The “Announcement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs In Connection With Personal Sanctions of American Citizens” has 500 names on it, of which about 15 are people the average Netflix-addicted New York reporter would recognize: Barack Obama, Rachel Maddow, “Stephen Tyrone Colbert,” Joe Lieberman, James Mattis, Jimmy Kimmel, Letitia James, Eric Ciaramella(!), and Erin Burnett(?), among others. I thought they put Nina Jankowicz 499th to troll her, but the list is in alphabetical order (her name is transliterated to start with the last Cyrillic letter “Я”).

This bevy of characters from high-profile online controversies triggered a hot squirt of commentary ejaculate, including Kluth’s, all on the same theme: “Russia Goes After Donald Trump’s Enemies” (Newsweek), “Putin uses sanctions to target Trump’s perceived U.S. foes” (MSNBC), “Russia’s Latest Sanctions on U.S. Officials Turn to Trump Enemies” (New York Times), and many others.

That American media figures would rush to congratulate one another for being dubbed PRUMP TUTIN enemies (and not for, say, wondering if Russia might “flip the off switch” on our power in winter, or entering “Vladimir Putin’s cock holster” into the lexicon) was so predictable, it’s hard to imagine these names weren’t inserted to inspire this exact press response.

Equally predictable is the list inspiring a rich new round of Russiagate delusions. Remember, the Russiagate era inspired a new genre of reporting — sanctioned by the ostensibly most reputable news organizations — called “reading between the lines”:

* * *

CLASSIC: Vanity Fair deduces future news

Kluth’s piece, a thriller built on the characters not on the list, is in the tradition:

The Russian president is once again signaling to Trump and the Tucker Carlson wing of the Republican party that they should make common cause. Your enemies are my enemies, Putin is vibing. And of course he’d quite appreciate Trump returning that favor if he gets back into the White House, and even if he doesn’t.

But what message was Putin “signaling,” if not a coded message of solidarity? I read the list out of curiosity. About a third of the way through, I started laughing, involuntarily. Interspersed between the handful of nutty media personalities was a long list of less celebrated people and organizations. See if you pick up the theme:

Bruce Adams and Megan Anderson; Executive Vice Presidents, In-Q-Tel; George Hoyem, Executive Vice President for Investments, In-Q-Tel; Christopher Darby, CEO, In-Q-Tel; Michael Hayden, former CIA and NSA head; David Marlowe, Assistant Director, CIA; Dustin Gard-Weiss, Deputy Director for National Intelligence, ODNI; Christine Е. Wormuth, Secretary of the Army; Stacey Angela Dixon, Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence; James Crown, Chairman, General Dynamics; Anne Neuberger, Deputy National Security Adviser for Cyber Technology; Shane Eddy, President, Pratt and Whitney; Paul Abbate, Deputy Director, FBI; Jeffrey Shockey, VP for Global Government Relations, Raytheon; Morgan Muir, Deputy DNI for Mission Interrogation…

Add a few dozen representatives of natsec think-tanks like the Atlantic Council, the Carnegie Endowment, the Center for Naval Analysis, and the Rand Corporation, plus a smattering of folks tied to information technology contractors or groups like the Aspen Institute, and for a moment I thought I was looking at a list we’d drawn up at Racket of people warranting a look in connection with the “Censorship-Industrial Complex.” It also seems a pretty good starter kit for the “Deep State,” although the commonality is likely more to be about military support for Ukraine (not that these are necessarily two different things).

I counted 29 current Republican elected officials on the list. Oklahoma congressman Josh Breechen just endorsed Trump. Trump just last year endorsed Alabama’s Katie Britt. There are similar stories with Anthony D’Esposito, Jen Kiggans, Zachary Nunn, and others. There are more Trump allies on the list than Trump-bashing TV hosts, that’s for certain, making the parade of “Putin Targets Trump’s Enemies Doh!” stories humorous on their face.

What good will it do Americans if they read this list really, and try on their own to learn more about what companies like Raytheon, General Dynamics, General Atomics, In-Q-Tel, Lockheed-Martin and BAE Systems really do, or why they’d be on a list with a gazillion Atlantic Council Board members, Penny Pritzker, and Twitter Files Star/Pete Buttigieg aide Carlos Monje? Probably no good at all, from the point of view of these people. But of course we wouldn’t be wondering about the list at all if a cattle car of media dopes didn’t just rush into a mass fluffing session over its contents. Are we allowed to say that’s funny? Probably not, but a laugh is a laugh.

* * *

* * *

MAUREEN CALLAHAN: There were two Tinas, the legend once said of herself: The rock n' roll goddess — and the proper lady, “the Tina who wears ballet flats and pearls, who believes in elegance.” But she was also so much more than that. Tina Turner — who has died of natural causes at 83 on Tuesday — was an object lesson in how to be a woman. An iconoclast. And never, ever anyone's victim. “I'm a girl from a cotton field,” she once said, “who pulled myself above what was not taught to me.” Born Anna Mae Bullock, in abject poverty and abandoned by her parents when she was just three years old, Tina — for all her ferocious talent and drive — became most known as a survivor of domestic violence. She spoke of it and wrote of it in the 1980s, a time when such things were still not discussed. America was pre-Oprah, pre-Internet, pre-confessional culture. Victimhood was not yet valorized.

* * *


An old trucker sat down in a diner and ordered a cup of coffee.

As he sat sipping his coffee, a young woman sat down next to him.

She turned to the wrinkled old gear jammer and asked, “Are you a real trucker?”

He replied, “Well, I’ve spent my whole life driving big rigs. I have delivered grain to breweries, I have carted machinery across the country, I have given rides at county fairs to lots of kids, and clocked up over 4 million miles, that's like to the moon and back 10 times so I guess I am a trucker. What about you?”

She said, “I’m a lesbian. I spend my whole day thinking about naked women. As soon as I get up in the morning, I think about naked women. When I shower, I think about naked women when I watch TV, I think about naked women. It seems everything makes me think of naked women.”

The two sat sipping in silence.

A little while later, a young boy sat down on the other side of the old truck driver and asked, “Are you a real trucker?”

He replied, “I always thought I was, but I just found out I’m a lesbian!”

* * *

* * *

I HAVE A THEORY that the moment one gives close attention to anything, even a blade of grass, it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself. I have tried this experiment a thousand times and I have never been disappointed. The more I look at a thing, the more I see in it, and the more I see in it, the more I want to see. It is like peeling an onion. There is always another layer, and another, and another. And each layer is more beautiful than the last.

This is the way I look at the world. I don't see it as a collection of objects, but as a vast and mysterious organism. I see the beauty in the smallest things, and I find wonder in the most ordinary events. I am always looking for the hidden meaning, the secret message. I am always trying to understand the mystery of life.

I know that I will never understand everything, but that doesn't stop me from trying. I am content to live in the mystery, to be surrounded by the unknown. I am content to be a seeker, a pilgrim, a traveler on the road to nowhere. 

— Henry Miller

* * *


Now if you wait until the sun gets down behind the big shoulder of the Savoie Alps where France joins on to Switzerland, the wind changes in the Rhone Valley and a cool breeze comes down from the mountains and blows downstream toward the Lake of Geneva. When this breeze comes and the sun is going down, great shadows come out from the mountains, the cows with their many-pitched bells begin to be driven along the road, and you fish down the stream.

— Ernest Hemingway, byline, Toronto Daily Star, June 10, 1922

* * *


As we look, the universe grows as does the number of galaxies in it. There are certainly hundreds of billions of galaxies in the currently observable universe, and some astronomers say there may be trillions.

With that number of galaxies (and many more stars of course), it is my belief that life, in both primitive and advanced form exists in many places throughout the cosmos.

Yes, belief, but how could it be otherwise? All of this grand majesty bringing life to only one planet? The laws of physics are thought to be essentially the same across the universe, so why wouldn’t they lend themselves to the creation of many more Earthlike planets?

And just think of all the ‘civilizations’ that not only exist now, but that have existed throughout the ages.

Yes, there definitely is life on other worlds, many other worlds. It’s only logical, extremely possible, and very plausible.

* * *


  1. Harvey Reading May 26, 2023


    For me, a great part of traveling by automobile is experiencing the drive, which includes actually driving. No self-driving computermobiles for me, especially not ones foisted on me by kaputalist robber barons, who ALL (including the supposedly beneficent Windoze man) should be sent for a nice trip to mars, sans life support. I’d as soon stay home.

  2. Betsy Cawn May 26, 2023

    Today in History:


    The House Un-American Activities Committee was established by Congress.

    • Chuck Dunbar May 26, 2023

      Thank you, Betsy. A good reminder that there has always been nastiness, cruelty and truly crazy happenings in American politics and governance. Our time is bad right now that’s for sure, but there have been other bad times, and we made our way back to some kind of sanity. Let’s hope for that this time.

      • Betsy Cawn May 26, 2023

        I listened raptly to Edward R. Murrow on my grandmother’s little Philco radio — at age 7 — taking down McCarthy bit by bit and never wavering. He has been my life’s inspiration from the very beginning. Now, at the end of that same life span, I am grateful to be among humans like you and the AVA “family” unwilling to submit to rhetorical terrorism fronting for responsible journalism. We need more than pure punditry, which the AVA strives to provide in addition to alternative “opinions.” Thanks for your acerbic wit and heartening comments.

        • Chuck Dunbar May 26, 2023

          Yes, Edward R. Murrow, an American hero who bravely spoke the plain truth, confronting bully and charlatan McCarthy. And the nation—seemingly wiser and smarter then than now— listened and got it. Off the national stage in disgrace he went, justice served after he’d done much damage to individuals and the nation.

          • Marmon May 26, 2023

            McCarthy should have been left to do his job of taking down the likes of Disney and Communist Hollywood.


            • Bruce Anderson May 26, 2023

              ‘Communist Hollywood’? Names!

              • Marmon May 26, 2023

                Hollywood spreading China propaganda: Report.
                (March 1, 2023)

                China is influencing Hollywood studios and using American films to promote communist propaganda as part of a grand strategy seeking global hegemony, according to a report by two Army officers.

                Hollywood has established financial ties with the Chinese film industry, one of the world’s largest movie markets. Once a financial relationship is established, the studios are beholden to the wishes of the party that controls all filmmaking operations in China, the report said.

                “The resulting financial influence has given Chinese film studios the placement and access necessary to change the content of American films, while forcing American film studios to self-censor to appease Beijing‘s sensibilities,” states the report written by Maj. Morgan A. Martin and Maj. Clinton J. Williamson and published by the Naval Postgraduate School.

                The China-Hollywood financial ties allow China‘s ruling Communist Party to exercise a large degree of influence over American studios in terms of content in their movies.

                “Disney, for example, worked closely with the China Film Group Corp. during the production of the live-action 2020 ‘Mulan’ remake, going as far as to get the script approved by the Central Propaganda Department,” the report said.



                • Harvey Reading May 26, 2023


                • Bruce Anderson May 26, 2023

                  Always remember what Tarzan said to Boy — “It’s a jungle out there.”

            • Chuck Dunbar May 26, 2023

              And Mr. Murrow should come back and take-down Donald Trump in front of the whole nation. It would be Trump’s undoing, a great and final defeat!

          • Jurgen Stoll May 26, 2023

            So many great examples to draw from and yet we keep making the same mistakes over and over. Why do we forget history and keep repeating it?

  3. michael turner May 26, 2023

    “Highly regarded” physician? Says who? You can go to the State Medical Board website and read about the disciplinary actions.

  4. Jurgen Stoll May 26, 2023

    I enjoyed the article on the improvements to the ice house at Noyo Harbor. I’m an avid ocean fisher and have enjoyed salmon fishing out of Noyo, Shelter Cove, Eureka, Trinidad, Crescent City, and Brookings. There are literally thousands of people that fish salmon and inject a shit load of money into coastal communities. That’s just sport fishing, commercial salmon fishing provides a great wild caught food source for people that want to buy it. And the native subsistence fishing, continuing in the traditions of their ancestors. All brought to you by a naturally reoccurring anadromous species that only needs to be able to spawn naturally, they way it has done for millions of years. Now tell me again why we can’t remove a couple of outdated dams.

    • jetfuel May 26, 2023

      Because there is simply no legitimate reason to.

      The sediment amd pollutants that would be flushed down the Eel from removal of the dam should be enough of a cause for alarm.

      A fish ladder could easily be built, allowing whatever salmon and steelhead that make it that far up, passage of the Scott Dam.

      Tell me how in drought years with the river completely dry would that keep fish stocks healthy?

      • Jurgen Stoll May 27, 2023

        The salmon populations thrived before we put up the dams, without water releases. I can see your mind is made up so I won’t try to convince you otherwise, but there is a lot of information out there about the benefits of dam removal for hydrogenous species if you care to do a search.

        • jetfuel May 27, 2023

          To believe the salmon population decline was a direct result of the Scott Dam Project would be uneducated.

  5. Lynne Sawyer May 27, 2023

    A few years ago, I substitute taught various grade levels for the AVUSD. The primary behavioral issue that I experienced, especially at the high school, was the widespread addictive attachment to cell phones that the students exhibited. The policy at the time was no phone use in class. Phones were to be turned off and stowed in their backpacks. If we could see or hear the phone, then we were to confiscate it and turn it into the office. The level of defiance to my confiscation of their phone by some of the students was surprising to me. The most defiant students were reported to the office and removed from my classrooms. I strongly support the staff in their removal of the phones from the students during class time at all grade levels. Tex Sawyer

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