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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Sunny | Snipe Sailing | AVUSD News | County Briefs | Goll Gull | Ed Notes | Watertower Watercolor | 128 Cyclists | Taming Colson | Angelica | Obon Festival | Covelo 1930 | Tracking Blakesley | Driftwood | Brovarney Book | Coming Home | London Visit | Yesterday's Catch | Air-Conditioned Bus | Dam | Ouch | Ball Turret | Returned Letter | Time | Robert/Wookie | Undocumented Immigrants | Mexican Border | Anti-Zionist | Screamin' Jay | Barbie v Ken | Lust Ledge | Bravo Jordan | Destination Addiction | Human Relations | Homer Table | Ukraine | Audi Workers | Military Spending | Fletcher/Forman | Negotiation Manipulators | X Painting

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SEASONABLE WEATHER conditions will occur across Northwest California during the next seven days. Interior temperatures will be near late July normals. Coastal areas will continue to experience periods of low clouds and fog, and perhaps a bit of early morning drizzle, but no rain. (NWS)

STEPHEN DUNLAP (Fort Bragg): Clear skies & 52F this Humpday morning on the coast. There appears to be some haze along the coast but the fog is largely gone surprisingly considering the forecast yesterday, oh well. Our forecast is for clear skies & light winds, aka "Chamber of Commerce" weather.

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Snipe sailboat on Lake Mendocino (Jeff Goll)

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Dear Anderson Valley Community,

A few announcements, as we head back to school!

Athlete’s Dinner

Mandatory Athlete Dinner– Monday, August 7 at 5:00

Terri Rhoades is cooking a tasty feast and Athletic Director Coach Toohey will have lots of details about the programs. Coaches will also be there. You must have a reservation in order for us to have enough food. Any family is welcome to attend even if your student is not playing a sport this year. Add your name to this list please:

Sports Dinner Reservation

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School Start And Orientation:

First day of school is August 14th. Orientation is as follows:

Aug 7- Grades 7/8 from 11-3 p.m.

Aug 8 - Grades 9/10 from 11-3 p.m.

Aug 9 - Grades 11/12 from 11-3 p.m.

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Cell Phone Policy

Please remind your students that the campus is cell-phone free for all grades next year. We don’t want to have any issues related to defiance related to this policy, so please talk with your student in advance. If you want to meet with me in advance with your student so I can explain the procedures and process, please let me know. Again, phones are easily available for emergencies with an unlocking device in each classroom. The teaching staff is looking forward to having the opportunity to reconnect without distraction of devices and reestablish connection and engaging content. 

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Potential Baking Class At Mendocino College

We were notified that there may be an opportunity for our students to attend a baking course at Mendocino College in the Fall on Tuesday afternoon/early evening. It is a two unit class. As you know, we have a bus going over the hill for students to take automotive and costume construction on that early release day. As the start time is later, we have arranged for a van and driver if we can get a reasonable number of students to sign up and the college’s approval for our participation. This is a wonderful opportunity for a vocational offering that meets our goals of expanding dual enrollment opportunities for our students no matter their college or career path. If you have any interest in this program it is filling quickly and you must email Mr. Howard at and call the office for next steps. Paperwork needs to be submitted quickly. There is no guarantee of reservation, as it is first come first serve and is still pending college approval.

Looking forward to welcoming you back.

Sincerely yours,

Louise Simson, Superintendent

Anderson Valley Unified School District

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(Well, maybe not so brief…)

by Mark Scaramella

It was hard to miss the in-your-face symbolism of Tuesday morning’s board of Supervisors meeting opening. Board Vice Chair Supervisor Mulheren began by inviting (as yet undeclared) 1st District Supervisor Candidate Trevor Mockel — unanimously, prematurely and suspiciously endorsed by all five Supervisors for no reason at all — to the podium to lead the board in the Pledge of Allegiance. 

Being inexperienced, Mockel stumbled by starting to pledge his allegiance before turning the podium mic on for a few words. He quickly recovered and once he got the mic on he performed admirably, considering it was his first crack at publicly pledging allegiance. The man demonstrated that he is fully qualified to lead the Board — in the Pledge of Allegiance, at least. 

Retired County Planner Scott Ward told the Board that they might be able to collect more taxes if they re-instated the old permit amnesty program (i.e., waive permit penalties for unpermitted buildings for people who fess up and come in from the cold) to get more structures on the tax rolls. The Board flatly ignored Mr. Ward.

County Assessor-Recorder-Tax Collector Katrina Bartolomie explained that there wasn’t time to get a tax assessment report into this month’s CEO report. She then proceeded to give an oral report which was too long and disorganized to summarize at in this report. More later.

A large contingent of County workers filled the Supervisors chambers again to complain that the County still wasn’t negotiating in good faith and that they were fully prepared to strike if they didn’t get a decent contract soon, or even a decent offer. Many of them had signs with a picture of a coiled cobra with the motto “Will Strike if Provoked.” (More on their presentation later.)

A county social worker (whose name unfortunately was unintelligible… “Hamilton”?) was particularly annoyed by an item in a recent Mendocino Voice on-line article by reporter Dave Brooksher. After describing the many difficulties of her stressful job — dealing with drug abusers, spousal batterers, child abusers, alcoholics, etc. — she said that she and her colleagues didn’t “feel valued” by the County and in particular a paragraph in Brooksher’s report that read, “The Voice reached out to Mendocino County CEO Darcie Antle, as well as the Board of Supervisors, regarding how the union strike might affect county business. Fifth District Supervisor Ted Williams said the strike would likely go unnoticed by the public.”

The social worker said she couldn’t believe a sitting Supervisor would make such a dismissive and insulting remark as that. 

Neither could we.

Williams didn’t deny, respond, apologize or explain. 

During the consent calendar discussion, Williams said the contracts with Anchor Health/Redwood Quality Management Company (RQMC) were unclear in several respects and should be re-written. County Counsel Christian Curtis explained that the retroactive contracts were “a rush job,” adding that there’s “a fair amount of vagueness in the language as presented.” Apparently, the primary contract with RQMC will no longer include having the Schraeders do the financial oversight of the Mental Health subcontractors — that function will be taken on by the County’s Mental Health Department run by Dr. Jenine Miller. Dr. Miller said that two of the retroactive subcontracts were “crisis contracts” and needed to be approved immediately to avoid affecting client services. Miller said that the contracts needed to be approved “today” to not affect services. 

(Need we note that this “rush job” problem occurs suspiciously often with these retroactive Mental Health contracts so there never seems to be much opportunity to review them or restructure them or improve the reporting requirements?)

Supervisor John Haschak wanted to know what the “transition plan” was to shift financial oversight from the Schraeders to the County.

Dr. Miller replied that the new contract with the Schraeders removes financial oversight requirements including billing from the RQMC contract. She said that she is trying to avoid another Ortner “debacle” to make sure they get the ten years of electronic patient records transitioned to the County.

(Why does this sound so familiar? … Oh, yes, I remember now, the County paid Ortner tens of thousands of extra dollars when Ortner was terminated in 2016 to assure the same thing. Hmmm…)

Williams wanted to know why, if RQMC’s Administrative Service Organization contracts no longer include the financial oversight function, didn’t the dollar value of the contracts go down? Nobody answered the question.

In the end they decided to extend the current contracts with RQMC and subcontractors for up to 90 days to allow for whatever contract clarifications may be made.

Several RCMS managers came to the podium to say they resented what they saw as “attacks on their integrity,” saying that, of course, they are not only doing a great job but that the state is no longer demanding the large amounts of service payments back like they did back in the bad old Ortner days before RCMS took over the billing as the “administrative service organization.”

Supervisor Dan Gjerde (and others) pointed out that public scrutiny of public contracts is just part of the program and that Ms. Schrader and her crew need not take offense.

Gjerde also insisted that the millions of dollars in recoupments the state has demanded from the County going back to the Ortner years (2013 to 2016) was entirely the fault of Ortner. 

Gjerde didn’t mention that Mendo, in the form of former Ortner executive and then-mental health director Tom Pinizzotto, personally approved all of Ortner’s reports and billings. Nor did Gjerde mention that Ortner Management Group has been out of business for years now and is, nevertheless, being sued by Mendocino County for data they don’t have and millions of dollars that that long-dead turnip has already bled.

The Board also discussed a controversial proposal from Supervisor Williams to upgrade the County’s hiring, background checking and training programs. Supervisor John Haschak thought the proposal was demeaning to current employees. (More on that later also.)

An ill-conceived idea from Williams and Supervisor Glenn McGourty to plan for a future establishment of a “finance director” position/office was approved unanimously, despite being based on misrepresentations from Board members and several effective refutations from members of the public (including Auditor/Tax Collector Chamise Cubbison who “took exception” to the entire idea and its implications). 

Our favorite line from that discussion was from 1st District Supervisor candidate Carrie Shattuck who bluntly told the board, “You can’t merge your way out of this.” (More on this later, as well.)

The Board spent the entire afternoon considering a proposed pot exclusion zone in Redwood Valley that would prohibit a relatively small existing legal grow site that’s been there for years. As is common with Mendo pot questions (but not with the many other more important fundamental issues), there were lots of comments for and against the exclusion zone — the non-pot-growing neighbors were mostly in favor of exclusion and the pot permit posse was against the exclusion. The Planning Commission had previously punted on the question, leaving it up to the Board to try to split the baby. 

Supervisor Mulheren’s sensible compromise suggestion to approve the exclusion zone but allow the existing grows (but no new ones) wasn’t acceptable to any of her colleagues.

Supervisor Gjerde moved to approve the exclusion zone and arrange for a three year phase out of the existing grows. This proposal produced more wrangling about Phase I and Phase 3 applicants and possibly sending it back to the Planning Commission and timing questions. 

But that went down 3-2 with Mulheren, Haschak and Williams against. Mulheren said she has never liked the exclusion zone idea and that it seemed to her more like a neighborhood popularity contest than prudent public policy. 

Williams proposed increasing code enforcement in the exclusion zone area. That passed unanimously.

After hours of comment and discussion, the Board voted 3-2 to deny the exclusion zone and let the legal growers continue, with Supervisors Gjerde and McGourty dissenting.

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MacKerricher Gull (Jeff Goll)

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BACK when school shootings hadn't yet become an assumed part of the American psycho-scape, two junior high boys in Jonesboro, Arkansas, gunned down several of their female classmates. A letter by Marie DeSantis soon appeared in the Press Democrat. It began, “The targeted mass shooting of school girls in Arkansas, like so many other massacres and mass mayhem of the last decade, was driven by sexism.” 

MY FIRST reaction was that I thought the two pre-teen shooters were a little young for lethal misogyny, and I wondered at the uncharacteristically blunt prose of DeSantis, a very good writer unlikely to resort to bludgeon-prose. Her book “California Currents” is the best thing I’ve read about fishing on the Northcoast. DeSantis was the first full-time fisher lady to work her own boat out of Noyo. But given the requirements of the PD’s letters page, the letter writer must be brief and direct; any and all nuance will be excised by the editorial offices. Don't even try irony.

DeSANTIS went from trolling salmon to trolling the grim waters of rape as the Community Services Coordinator for Sonoma County’s Women Against Rape. It was her job to show up in the emergency room when a woman had been sexually assaulted and steer the victim and her family through the justice labyrinth while sorting out atrocity stories, evaluating them, and trying to make things as right as they can be after the worst violation short of death has been suffered by the victim.

THIS LADY was exactly the right person for the job. She had a fully operational bullshit detector and she’s tough. And very smart and refreshingly articulate, never lapsing into the all-men-are-rapists rhetoric of the professional gender warriors.

DeSANTIS — no relation to the Florida ape — told me that the incidence of assault isn't encouraging, ranging from oafish disrespect of the “Hey, baby” type to overt violence, especially against young women.

SHE SAID that in one recent month her agency had recorded 80 new cases of sexual assault, 65 of them felony quality. She said the stats were “nothing new” and that only two of the cases were attacks by strangers, and included 15 new cases of school-age girls forcibly raped via beatings, screwdrivers, ropes, guns, knives, drugs, instruments of torture, handcuffs and, almost always, threats to kill. About a third of these rapes were done by school-age boys who were angry with their girlfriends.

AS A MAN nearing the very top of mortality's actuarial table, a single episode involving any of these assaults would have been front page news in my formative years, and mistreatment of women of all ages, in the rare episodes I was aware of, was often met by direct retaliation by the woman's male relatives. These days, however, criminal violence is celebrated in film and song, and we're so used to atrocity stories on the evening’s television calamity reports that as shocking as the horror stories are — the Long Island killer has been front and center for a month now — we know a fresh batch is coming right up.

“THERE’S A BIG PROBLEM,” DeSantis said, “with the schools’ handling of post-rape victims. Young girls are being raped, and schools tend to be insensitive to both its high incidence and its aftermaths. Rape is a high voltage charge.”

“WHAT HAPPENS is that a suspect, usually in the same social circle as his victim 99% of the time, defends himself like a criminal. He gathers a gang and pressures the victim via his and her social circle via social media. The intensity of the pressure often drives girls right out of school, and the school typically tries to cover it all up, hoping the episode and its aftermath will somehow go away.”

“USUALLY, it’s Mom who goes to bat for her kid, but the cops are typically very hard on a mother who pressures the police to investigate an assault on her daughter.” DeSantis says a lot of cops imply to parents of young rape victims that a lack of parental supervision has gotten their child attacked, as if the parent’s absence during the event somehow made it possible if not justified. “The pure violence of rape is downplayed as understandable because the young woman is staying out late with the wrong people. She ought to live in a society where she wouldn’t be raped no matter where or who she happened to be with,” DeSantis emphasizes.

SHE TALKED FAST, smart, and funny about how uncomfortable the cops become when they have to talk about the mechanics of sexual assault in the presence of a young victim. I can’t think of any men I know who’d feel comfortable interviewing a rape victim, but then I feel increasingly like a stranger in a very strange land.

“IT’S KINDA FUNNY,” DeSantis says, “watching these big dudes stuttering as they rack their puritanical minds for a euphemism for ‘ejaculate.’ That one drove one guy right out of the room he was so embarrassed. They’re the most fortressed white male mentality left in the nation,” DeSantis said. “But,” she hastened to add, “it’s getting better. There are individual rape units around the country that are very good.”

AN ADDITIONAL PROBLEM faced by the victim and her family is often the District Attorney. “They tend to treat the criminal code like a menu,” DeSantis claims, often knocking rape off the dinner list in favor of lesser charges. “For the epidemic to be brought under control, cops, prosecutors, victims, and advocates all have to work together. It doesn’t happen often,” the counselor laments, her voice trailing off.

“RAPE runs the spectrum of the population,” DeSantis tells me, “just like domestic violence. Generally, the men who rape still cling to old stereotypes about women. Beyond that unifying factor, they come from the proverbial all walks of life.” She calls assaults on women “crimes of entitlement. They’re not like crimes coming out of deprivation. Men raised to think that women belong to them, feel they can do whatever they want to their wives and girlfriends.”

WITH a sort of smiling through the apocalypse sign-off, the former fisher lady told me that overall she thought “the situation” — women in a berserk society — “was better. A lot of the horrible stuff is in reaction to the real advances women have made. It’s like the Reconstruction in a way. Lots of people couldn’t adjust to equality for blacks. Lots of men can’t adjust to women as equals.”

I DUNNO. I think men beat or rape women because they can get away with it, just like men used to be able to murder black people and get away with it. Maybe the boys will adjust, maybe they won’t. The entertainment industry seems to be betting on more of the same, and sexual assault is more common now than when I last talked with Marie almost 30 years ago.

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WATER COLOR PAINTING by Marian R. Scherf of a water tower in Boonville.

ED NOTE: Dear Ms. Scherf (93 of Willits): Thank you very much for sending his lovely painting of an old water tower up on what was once the Rickard Ranch east of Boonville, later the Moonie Ranch and nowadays “Sheep Dung Estates.” Very nice watercolor work. 

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Cyclists on Highway 128: I would just put pedal to the metal and mow them down. My defense: “Oops, my foot slipped!” Or: “I mistook the brake pedal for the gas.” Meanwhile, as they hold up traffic, the cars behind them are idling and burning more oil than they otherwise would, thereby releasing even more emissions into their precious atmosphere.

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On Tuesday, July 25, 2023 at approximately 3:43 AM, officers were dispatched to the Boatyard Shopping Center on the report of male threatening employees with a stick. The male had also threatened to kill some of the employees, vandalized multiple vehicles and attempted to carjack a victim in a car in the parking lot. Officers arrived and located Jason Colson, 39 years, of Fort Bragg, armed with two wooden batons. 

Jason Colson, July 2023; December 2021

Colson immediately took an aggressive stance and threatened officers. 

Colson began walking away from officers despite repeated commands. When he turned and again acted aggressively towards officers, a TASER was deployed. Unfortunately, it was not successful, and Colson fled towards Highway 20 with officers in pursuit. 

Sheriff’s Deputies heard the radio traffic and immediately responded to assist. Colson again aggressed officers and deputies and another TASER deployment was attempted, but was again unsuccessful. Officers and deputies chased Colson southbound on Highway 1 to the middle of the Hare Creek Bridge, where Colson threatened to jump if officers did not leave him alone. 

Traffic was stopped at the Hare Creek Bridge in both directions while Fort Bragg Police officers deescalated and negotiated with Colson, who was still armed, for nearly two hours. In the end, Colson dropped the batons and surrendered to officers peacefully. 

Fort Bragg Police Captain Thomas O’Neal said, “The restraint and professionalism of our officers was evident. This could have had a tragic outcome for many had the officers not had the training and patience they do. I would also like to thank our partners in the Sheriff’s Office, who assisted without request for the entire event. It takes teamwork like this for a successful ending.” 

Colson was booked in the Mendocino County Jail for Assault with a Deadly Weapon; Attempted Carjacking; Felony Vandalism, Criminal Threats; Resisting/Obstructing an Officer; Robbery; and Illegal Possession of a Baton. 

Anyone with information on this incident is encouraged to contact Officer Beak of the Fort Bragg Police Department at (707) 961-2800 ext 224. 

This information is being released by Fort Bragg Police Chief Neil Cervenka. All media inquiries should contact him at 

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Mendocino Bay Seacoast Angelica (Jeff Goll)

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Many Japanese people believe the spirits of ancestors and the departed loved ones are coming home in the middle of August every year. Obon is the period that we welcome their return and celebrate the time together. At the end of Obon, we send off them with respect and love until next August.

Obon is the time to honor ancestral spirits, reunite with precious memories with the departed, and reconnect with family, friends, and community. The farewell dance is the main part of Obon called Bon Odori, a circle dance with a few easy moves for everyone to join. Bon Odori is the gift dedicated by the living to the deceased.

We feel truly privileged to bring this beautiful Japanese Obon Festival to this wonderful community of Mendocino. We will have Stage Performances: Taiko, Shakuhachi, Koto, Shamisen, Aikido, and Japanese Dances. We also offer Hands-on Activity tables for you to try out Japanese crafts and arts. Of course, we have Japanese food for you to enjoy. AND, please join our Circle Dance (Bon Odori) at the end of the event. It will be a great workout! You can find the detailed program below.

This is a fundraising event for Mendocino Sister Cities Association (MSCA). The proceeds from Hands-on Activities, Food, Japanese crafts, MSCA merchandise, go to MSCA. Your donation and participation will be GREATLY appreciated.

August 12, 2023, Saturday

Noon to 4 pm

Mendocino Rotary Park

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Covelo, 1930

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On Sunday, July 23, 2023, at approximately 4:30pm, UPD Officers were notified of a stolen vehicle via the FLOCK camera system. UPD Dispatch was also notified and confirmed the vehicle was stolen out of Sonora, California. Officers responded to the location of the stolen vehicle and a UPD Officer observed the stolen vehicle traveling northbound in the 700 block of North State Street. 

UPD Officers attempted to conduct a traffic enforcement stop. As the officer activated overhead emergency lights and siren, the stolen vehicle immediately drove recklessly and sped away southbound. The officer initiated a vehicle pursuit. 

Officers pursued the stolen vehicle as it drove southbound on South State Street to the intersection of South State Street and Talmage Road. The stolen vehicle made a left hand turn to travel eastbound on Talmage Road. UPD Officers pursued the stolen vehicle to Old River Road, where the stolen vehicle made a right hand turn and traveled southbound on Old River Road. The stolen vehicle made a left hand turn onto Mill Creek Road, where UPD Officers terminated the pursuit after losing sight of the vehicle. 

Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputies and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife responded to assist.

A search of the area was conducted, and further investigation found that the stolen vehicle continued eastbound into the Cow Mountain wilderness. 

On 7/24/2023, the UPD Officer was able to access GPS tracking to the stolen vehicle. UPD Officers and Detectives responded to the area where GPS showed the vehicle and located the stolen vehicle behind a property off of Guidiville Reservation Road. UPD Officers and Detectives located a male subject sleeping in the driver seat of the stolen vehicle. The male subject was apprehended by UPD Officers and Detectives, and identified as Dustin Blakesley. 

Dustin Blakesley

Further investigation was able to tie Blakesley to two other vehicle pursuits with UPD, two pursuits with the California Highway Patrol, and a pursuit with the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office. During one of the prior pursuits with UPD, Blakesley used a vehicle to ram a UPD Officer’s patrol vehicle while the UPD Officer was standing outside of the vehicle. The UPD Officer received minor injuries as a result of the assault. 

Additionally, Blakesley had an active warrant for his arrest for a violation of 2800.3(a) VC, evade peace officers causing injury. During that pursuit, Blakesley crashed his vehicle into another vehicle on the roadway, causing injuries to civilians. This incident occurred inside the city limits of Ukiah as well. 

Blakesley was subsequently arrested and transported to the Mendocino County Jail for several cases and various charges. 

The Ukiah Police Department would like to thank MCSO and the Department of Fish and Wildlife for their 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 Nixlebutton on our website;

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Driftwood on cliff, Belinda Point (Jeff Goll)

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Mendocino Refuge news


At Four-Eyed Frog and county bookstores and museums.

Mendocino Refuge: Lake Leonard & Reeves Canyon, a new book about a remarkable North Coast watershed and its inhabitants, is now available at Four-Eyed Frog, and bookstores and many museum shops throughout Mendocino County.

Kirkus Reviews calls it “A captivating homage to a wilderness sanctuary marked, but not spoiled, by human presence … [Dot] Brovarney deftly mixes regional history, ecology, and character studies of people who shaped and were shaped by the land, writing in lucid … prose dotted with flights of vivid lyricism.”

In full color with 200 images, Mendocino Refuge tells the story of Mendocino County’s largest natural lake, and the canyon and Upper Russian River creek that it feeds. Longtime regional historian Dot Brovarney takes the reader along on a fascinating journey through nearby history, from geologic time through today, as the U.S. Geological Society conducts climate change research at “near to pristine” Lake Leonard.

Besides a USGS paleoecologist, you’ll meet Pomo peoples, pioneer settlers, loggers and hunters, and others, including two intrepid women who made the canyon home for decades.

For more, including how to order on-line, go to

Dot Brovarney, Historian/Author/Publisher

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MITCH CLOGG: "Coming home," when it involves Mendocino, is not like any other homecoming. Never too early, the headland-front of the town ("Village") enters your front windshield just moments before you're there. By then you've traveled hundreds or thousands of miles to see the floodlighted steeple of the Presbyterian church, a second before you see the neon-bright pink martini glass over the front of Dick's Place--a few hundred yards across the breaking beach, bay and river. You smell the salt. All's well in the world.

Mendocino Starry Night by Debra Beck Lennox

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Looking for something else on the internet, I stumbled into a travelogue of sorts of Jack London and his wife Charmian - written by the latter — around the time of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire. 

In addition to visiting the San Francisco ruins, Jack and Charmian spent a two-week holiday in Napa, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino Counties that included overnight stops in Ukiah, Willits, Fort Bragg, Navarro, Albion, Greenwood, Boonville and a lunch stop in Philo, before finishing off the trip with stays in Cloverdale, and Santa Rosa before arriving home in Glen Ellen.

The work is titled ‘The Book of Jack London: [Charmian London's Account of the Great Earthquake]’ and is housed in the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Tuesday, July 25, 2023

Banta, Bettencouirt, Colson, David

JESSI BANTA, Willits. Assault with deadly weapon not a gun.

CURTIS BETTENCOURT, Fort Bragg. Controlled substance, county parole violation.

JASON COLSON, Fort Bragg. Assault with deadly weapon with great bodily injury, robbery, vandalism, saps/similar weapons, criminal threats, resisting, unspecified offense.

ALISHA DAVID, West Sacramento/Ukiah. Child endangerment.

Gomez, Maples, Mendoza

SERAFIN GOMEZ, Fort Bragg. Domestic battery.

TONY MAPLES, Ukiah. Probation violation.

IVETTE MENDOZA, Ukiah. Conspiracy, probation revocation.

Obrion, Robinson, Strang, Suba

NICHOL OBRION, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

CASEY ROBINSON, Fort Bragg. Failure to appear, probation revocation.

ALICE STRANG, Ukiah. Conspiracy.

KRISTOFF SUBA, Willits. Domestic battery, destructive device.

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Postcard from Ukiah, California

Awoke fully rested at the Building Bridges Homeless Resource Center in sunny Ukiah, California, and following morning ablutions, ambled south on State Street to the Plowshares Peace & Justice Center for a sumptuous free meal served courtesy of those pesky Catholic Workers. Afterwards, boarded an air conditioned MTA bus and deboarded at the Ukiah Public Library. Am this instant on computer #3 tap, tap tapping away. I am not identified with the body. I am not identified with the mind. Immortal Self I am! If anybody wishes to do anything of any importance on the planet earth, feel free to contact me. OM OM OM

Craig Louis Stehr,

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SOME OF Y’ALL have been asking about the size of the dam in our last post, so here’s me standing on it for scale! (Blind facebook item. No other info provided)

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My ears are burning

…Belly aching

……Toes are jamming

………Back is breaking

My tongue is wagging

…Joints are jumping

……Gut's a busting

………Heart's a thumping

My bones are creaking

…Fingers popping

……Lips are smacking

………Knees are knocking

My eyes are crying

…Feet are dragging

……Hips are shaking

………Shoulders sagging

My nose is running

…Skin is crawling

……Ribs are cracked

………Arches falling

I'm getting older

…By the minute

……Heading to that

………Free verse clinic

— Steve Derwinski

* * *

A BOMBER’S BALL TURRET position is often looked at with fear in ones eyes, being suspended underneath a bomber with 30,000 ft between you and the ground. The turret was a small, cramped place to be, often operated by the smallest men available.

* * *


Dear AVA Editor,

I find it odd that our state of things has led us down an unused or defunct rabbit hole. I figured why go to the main EPA? Be smart go to California’s 600 Wilshire Blvd (region 9) suite 940 Los Angles CA 90017. It came back with a yellow sticker return to sender attempted-not known unable to forward (nixle). Well the postal service must not know about the Environmental Protection Agency, especially here in California. Another head shaker. 

Greg Crawford

Fort Bragg

* * *

Time is a deceiver 
The sneaky thief of forever
A Pretentious clock keeping count
While we meander about 
Time does not stop or go in reverse
It marches forward 
Like the Drill Sergeant yelling orders 
Commanding attention from his soldiers

— Mazie Malone

* * *

Robert Mailer And The Wookie

* * *



Republicans love to blame illegal immigrants for almost everything. The truth is if all undocumented immigrants disappeared tomorrow, it would lead to economic chaos in our country. Think of the industries that would be severely impacted if we didn’t have these folks. Hospitality, agriculture and construction are just a few that would be affected. Legislators know this, and that is why they don’t seriously go after the companies that hire undocumented immigrants.

Paul Schumacher

Santa Rosa

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by David Bacon

Over the past half century the once-small towns of Ciudad Juárez and Tijuana have become cities of millions. A huge part of the industrial workforce in the production and supply chain that delivers products to U.S. consumers lives not on the U.S. but on the Mexican side of the border, where people build homes out of cardboard and shipping pallets cast off by the maquiladoras and the dirt streets of their barrios often end at the border wall. 

Many neighborhoods have no sewers and flood when it rains. Electricity is stolen by hooking up to power lines, while drinking water comes in a truck and people must pay to fill the tanks in front of their homes. Often living conditions for poor and homeless people in border cities like Tijuana are no different from those endured by migrants who have crossed the border to live in the United States.…

* * *


Another experience in Amman in 1970 is worth retelling and may help to explain my feelings about Israel and Israelis. I was invited to stay overnight at Schneller Camp, which housed refugees from 1967, by a young guard at the PLO HQ who shared a small metal hut there with a few other young refugees. There was no room for furniture, just for the stack of their thin mattresses which they stretched out on the floor at night before going to sleep.

Before turning in, they would get into pajamas and have a smoke, squatting outside in the night. When my host took off his shirt to put on his pajama top I noticed that his upper body, back and chest, was covered with small scars. When I asked what they were he explained that when he was 17, the Israelis had arrested him, and believing that he was fedayeen, a resistance, fighter, they wanted him to inform on his comrades.

Since he was not fedayeen, he had nothing to tell them which they finally came to believe, but not before they had repeatedly pressed burning cigarettes against his chest and back and broken both of his arms by pressing them backwards at his elbows. He then became a fedayeen.

That was 44 years ago, but I knew then that there was little difference between Nazi Germany and Zionist Israel, a feeling that would only be re-enforced by later experiences in Lebanon, the West Bank, and Gaza.

There is, however, one significant difference. There was a civilized Germany both before and after WW2. Naziism was an aberration. Israel and Zionism are inseparable. There can be no Israel without Zionism, thus, to be an anti-Zionist, one MUST be anti-Israel. That's a point that needs to made over and over.

* * *


“I came into this world black, naked and ugly. And no matter how much I accumulate here, it's a short journey. I will go out of this world black, naked and ugly. So I enjoy life.”

Jalacy J. "Screamin' Jay" Hawkins (July 18, 1929 – February 12, 2000)

* * *

IF I MADE A MOVIE THAT TREATED WOMEN The Way Barbie Treats Men, Feminists Would Want Me Executed

by Piers Morgan

What is the patriarchy?

I bet most people reading this haven’t a clue.

Even I don’t really understand it, and according to radical feminists, I’m supposed to be the very personification of what it supposedly represents.

Yet it’s a word that is said so relentlessly in the smash-hit new Barbie movie that it’s worth knowing exactly what it means.

The literal translation, derived from the ancient Greek word “patriarkhēs,” is “rule of the father” and denoted the reality at the time that men were the titular heads of most families and organizations.

But in recent times, the concept of “the patriarchy” has been hijacked and corrupted by feminazis to suggest that every aspect of life and society is dominated by powerful, privileged males over subjugated, underprivileged females.

In short: Men are evil oppressors, women are unimpeachably perfect victims, and anyone who dares challenge this notion is a disgusting misogynist.

The movie’s clear message is that the only solution to this dreadful patriarchal state of affairs is for women to rule the world, and preferably to do so on their own without horrible men to ruin both the planet and them.

It’s a ridiculously misandrist message that is being rammed down the throats of literally tens of millions of people as “Barbie” smashes box office records around the world with a $300 million opening weekend — even eclipsing “Oppenheimer,” Christopher Nolan’s much-vaunted blockbuster about the man who invented the atomic bomb.

And forgive me if I don’t join in the widespread exclamations of unbridled joy at its unexpected success.

What passes for a plot in the film basically boils down this: Barbie, played by Margot Robbie, exists in Barbie-land with myriad other Barbies who tick every possible woke virtue-signaling box — there’s a trans Barbie, a Barbie in a wheelchair, and President Barbie is a black woman.

This is a feminist Utopia where the Barbies are all-powerful and the Kens, led by Ryan Gosling, are a bunch of second-class, useless halfwits.

Then Barbie and Ken are transported to the supposed “real world,” where, predictably, they discover that it’s all great for men and terrible for women.

Ken quickly embraces the despicable “patriarchy” with breathless bro enthusiasm and becomes an entitled, arrogant, macho douchebag.

Poor Barbie, meanwhile, instantly becomes an objectified, imperiled, vulnerable victim of men who leer at her and treat her with horrible disrespect.

We’re told: “Everything exists to expand and elevate the presence of men.”


I don’t think the real world is like that at all.

The real world I occupy is chock-full of confident, high-achieving women who would laugh at such a derisory mischaracterization of their status in life.

And the truth about the patriarchy-riddled “real world” is that for all the grotesque man-bashing caricatures it propagates, all it really does is afford agency and voice to men when compared with their dystopian nightmare in Barbie-land where men are downtrodden chattels of their women.

Yet we’re supposed to think this is disgusting!

Newly empowered patriarchal monster Ken returns to Barbie-land, where he and his fellow Kens turn it into their own personal “Kendom” and brainwash the remaining Barbies into becoming subservient.

But head Barbie rides to the rescue by seizing back control and driving the hapless Kens back to being subservient saps to the women again.

To which my response is: Why?

I thought the whole point of feminism is that women wanted equality with men, not a complete reversal of the perceived unequal social power structure.

I don’t know any woman, other than perhaps US female soccer superstar Megan Rapinoe, who wants a world where women dominate absolutely everything — and men are reduced to dim-witted doormats barely capable of changing a light bulb.

Much of the movie is also based on a demonstrable lie.

As conservative commentator Ben Shapiro revealed in his gloriously excoriating takedown of the film, the scenes where ultimate alpha male Will Ferrell leads a bunch of suited men in the supposed all-male Mattel boardroom are a ludicrous misrepresentation of a toy company that was run for 30 years by Ruth Handler, the woman who created Barbie, and whose current 12-person board includes five women.

But the woke world rarely lets facts get in the way of a good whine.

The longer “Barbie” goes on, the more preachy and irritating it gets.

A low point comes near the end when a depressive, and depressing, Mattel doll designer played by America Ferrera launches into a lengthy monologue on how awful it is to be a woman.

By the end, I felt miserable just thinking about being a woman.

The biggest irony of the film is that Margot Robbie — who is my favorite female movie star, a very talented actress and, judging by the one time I met and chatted with her at a Hollywood party several years ago, is also as delightfully warm and funny as she is in the movie — only landed this role because she’s exceptionally beautiful.

You couldn’t have an aesthetically challenged woman play head Barbie, however much the Matriarchy would like to think that could happen, because nobody would go and watch it, and the undeniably brilliant marketing campaign for the movie has focused heavily on Robbie’s radiantly glamorous appearance.

So Hollywood took the prettiest woman in the whole town and cast her in a movie supposedly intended to prove women don’t have to rely on things like their looks or sex appeal to men to succeed.

They don’t, obviously, but this movie proves it massively helps.

Just ask Robbie’s bank manager.

At the end, Barbie makes it crystal clear to Ken that she doesn’t fancy him and certainly doesn’t need him to conquer the world.

In fact, she has a much better chance of doing so by channeling her inner feminist power free from his stupid, controlling clutches.

Ken is thus reduced to a weak, emasculated goon, an objectified and excluded member of the wrong sex who sings a lament to his own “blond fragility.”

It’s true he and the other Kens are promised a more equal world going forward, but we see no actual evidence that this happens.

It all smacks of George Orwell’s “All animals are equal but some are more equal than others …”

The audience is left in little doubt that all that matters is the women are in charge.

Of course, by reaching this dismally sexist denouement, the movie achieves exactly what it wanted to achieve and that is to establish the matriarchy as the perfect antidote to the patriarchy when in fact it’s just the same concept that they asked us all to detest in the first place.

To give you some idea of the movie’s immediate impact, singer Lily Allen tweeted: “I saw Barbie and Oppenheimer this weekend and my takeaway is that if Oppenheimer was a woman, Hiroshima might not have happened.”

That’s precisely the kind of ludicrously crass and stupid conclusion the film wants you to make.

And that’s why I think its core message stinks.

The bottom line is this: If I made a movie mocking women as useless dunderheads, constantly attacking “the matriarchy,” and depicting all things feminist as toxic bullshit, I wouldn’t just be canceled, I’d be executed.

But the good news is that if the trans lobby has lost their way, women will still be dominated by biological men going forward — they’ll just be identifying as women!

* * *

* * *


After yesterday's ‘big win’ for the House GOP, what's a disillusioned lifetime Democrat to think?

by Matt Taibbi

In a surprise, with good news and government so rarely intersecting, IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel said the agency was cutting back on “surprise visits”, from thousands per year to a few hundred. “We have the tools we need to successfully collect revenue without adding stress with unannounced visits,” Werfel said.

House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan and staff raised genuine hell over this issue when I told them the bizarre tale of the IRS coming to my door as I testified before Jordan’s Weaponization of Government Subcommittee in March. Republicans in both chambers hounded Werfel and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and threatened to withhold funding over the visit; the media circus reached into the White House, with New York Post writer Steven Nelson asking Admiral John Kirby about it in a briefing. Yesterday’s move then clearly seemed tied to the Jordan-instigated press barrage, so it felt natural when the Judiciary Committee took credit for a “big win.”

Asked for comment by a few outlets, I offered sincere thanks to Chairman Jordan and his staff, then chuckled at coverage. While most played it straight, the Washington Post, New York Times, USA Today and others wrote the story not only without mentioning my case (whatever), but without mentioning Jordan or the spring media furor. They wrote around the political harassment allegations as if they were not key context and pitched yesterday’s news as a move to “ensure the safety of [IRS] employees and taxpayers,” as USA Today put it. We’re getting to the point where even minor stories have to be context-scrubbed before publication. 

After yesterday I wondered what the Democratic strategy is for people like me. I assume based on support levels for candidates like RFK, Jr. and Cornel West that a lot of us who grew up voting blue find themselves out of step with current leadership on issues like war and censorship, but it’s worse than that. The Democrats’ pitch now is VOTE FOR US OR YOU’RE TREASONOUS SCUM. They mean it in a literal sense, whether it’s “Russian asset” Tulsi Gabbard or “dangerous anti-Semitic and anti-Asian” RFK or even West, whose campaign manager Jill Stein was just called “almost certainly a Russian agent” by the party’s once-avuncular Clinton-era consigliere, James Carville. What are they doing? It feels like a corporate restructuring, in search of a leaner, meaner electorate. ActBlue2024: Fewer voters, but better! Can this be a strategy?

In my case, elected officials of one party essentially called me a dangerous money-grubbing FSB whore who should be jailed on television, while the other has now actually done something in response to the IRS showing up at my house. This kind of thing is getting harder to ignore. Thanks, really, to Chairman Jordan, who’s lived up to a friend’s recommendation as someone who’ll be an old-school stickler on certain issues, even if he disagrees with you on others. Why is that such a hard thing for some politicians to be?

* * *

DO YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE only to get to the end of it? Most people answer this question with a “no,” but not everyone lives like they mean it. In the manic society that most of us experience, people exhibit a frantic, neurotic behavior I call “Destination Addiction.” This addiction is a major block to success. People who suffer from Destination Addiction believe that success is a destination. They are addicted to the idea that the future is where success is, happiness is, and heaven is. Each passing moment is merely a ticket to get to the future. They live in the “not now,” they are psychologically absent, and they disregard everything they have. Destination Addiction is a preoccupation with the idea that happiness is somewhere else. We suffer, literally, from the pursuit of happiness. We are always on the run, on the move, and on the go. Our goal is not to enjoy the day, it is to get through the day. We have always to get to somewhere else first before we can relax and before we can savor the moment. But we never get there. There is no point of arrival. We are permanently dissatisfied. The feeling of success is continually deferred. We live in hot pursuit of some extraordinary bliss we have no idea how to find. 

— Robert Holden

* * *

THERE SHOULD BE more sincerity and heart in human relations, more silence and simplicity in our interactions. Be rude when you’re angry, laugh when something is funny, and answer when you’re asked.

— Anton Chekhov

* * *

4,507 CAREER HOME RUNS sitting at one table… absolutely legendary.

* * *


Ukraine reported advances in the south and east, as its forces struggle to puncture Moscow's tight defense lines. In the Kyiv region, Ukraine said it repelled a drone strike Tuesday, the sixth attack on the capital this month.

Trevor Reed, the former US Marine wrongfully detained in Russia for nearly three years before being released in a prisoner swap, was injured while fighting in Ukraine, the US State Department said.

Russian accounts of a rocket attack on a camp holding Ukrainian prisoners of war in July 2022 are not supported by evidence, according to the United Nations.

The Russian State Duma passed an amendment extending the military call-up age to include citizens from 18 to 30 years, up from a top age limit of 27.

* * *

TREVOR REED’S FIGHTING IN UKRAINE shouldn’t affect negotiations to free other Americans, Blinken says

Trevor Reed's fighting in Ukraine “shouldn’t have any effect” on negotiations to free other detained Americans, Paul Whelan and Evan Gershkovich, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Tuesday.

Reed is a former US Marine who was wrongfully detained in Russia for nearly three years before being released in a prisoner swap. The State Department said earlier Tuesday that he was injured fighting in Ukraine.

“As I've noted before, even with countries where we have profound differences, and almost by definition, countries that are arbitrarily detaining or unlawfully detaining Americans are usually countries with which we have profound differences, we manage to find ways to bring Americans home,” Blinken said at a press conference in Tonga.

He touted the success of the administration so far, saying 29 Americans from at least 10 countries were brought back home.

“So my expectation is that even as we're dealing with all sorts of other challenges in our relationship with Russia, we will and we are determined to continue to work to bring both Evan and Paul home,” Blinken said.

Blinken said he had seen the reports that Reed was injured but didn’t have any additional information on his condition. The top US diplomat said it underscored why the US warns Americans against traveling to Ukraine.

Gershkovich, a reporter for the Wall Street Journal, has been detained in Russia following his arrest on espionage charges that he, the WSJ, and the US government vehemently deny.

Whelan has been imprisoned for nearly five years, also on espionage charges that he and the US government have denied.


* * *

AUDI WORKERS demonstrating the body strength of the Audi 920 (1938)

* * *


by Senator Bernie Sanders

The US Senate is now debating an $886bn defense authorization bill. Unless there are major changes to the bill, I intend to vote against it. Here’s why.

As everyone knows, our country faces enormous crises.

As a result of climate change our planet is experiencing unprecedented and rising temperatures. Along with the rest of the world, we need to make major investments to transform our energy system away from fossil fuels and into more efficient and sustainable energy sources, or the life we leave our kids and future generations will become increasingly unhealthy and precarious.

Our healthcare system is broken. While the insurance companies and the pharmaceutical industry make hundreds of billions in profit, 85 million Americans are uninsured or underinsured, our life expectancy is declining, and we have a massive shortage of doctors, nurses, mental health practitioners and dentists.

Our educational system is teetering. While we have one of the highest rates of childhood poverty of almost any major country, millions of parents cannot find affordable and quality childcare. The number of our young people who graduate from college is falling behind many other countries and 45 million Americans are struggling under the weight of student debt.

Our housing stock is totally inadequate. While gentrification is causing rents to soar in many parts of our country some 600,000 Americans are homeless, and 18 million are spending more than half of their limited incomes on housing.

These are some of the crises our country faces. And we’re not dealing with them.

And then there is defense spending. Well, that’s a whole other story. The proposed military budget that the Senate is now debating would increase defense spending by $28bn to over $886bn, an all-time record. The total is over $900bn if you include nuclear weapons spending through the Department of Energy.

I will oppose this bloated defense budget and efforts to further increase military spending through a defense supplemental for three main reasons.

First, more military spending is unnecessary. The $886bn in defense spending agreed in the debt ceiling deal matches the Pentagon’s budget request and is more than sufficient to protect the United States and our allies. The United States spends more than three times what China spends on its military. This record high defense spending would come in spite of the end of the war in Afghanistan and despite the fact that the United States spends more on the military than the next 10 countries combined, most of whom are allies.

Second, the Pentagon cannot keep track of the dollars it already has, leading to massive waste, fraud and abuse in the sprawling military-industrial complex. The Pentagon accounts for about two-thirds of all federal contracting activity, obligating more money every year than all civilian federal agencies combined. Yet the Department of Defense (DOD) remains the only major federal agency that cannot pass an independent audit. Last year, the department was unable to account for over half of its assets, which are in excess of $3.1tn. The Government Accountability Office (Gao) reportsthat DOD still cannot accurately track its finances or post transactions to the correct accounts. Each year, auditors find billions of dollars in the Pentagon’s proverbial couch cushions; in fiscal year 2022, navy auditors found $4.4bn in untracked inventory, while the air force identified $5.2bn worth of variances in its general ledger. A serious effort to address this waste should be undertaken before Congress throws more money at the Pentagon.

Third, much of this additional military spending will go to line the pockets of hugely profitable defense contractors – it is corporate welfare by a different name. Almost half of the Pentagon budget goes to private contractors, some of whom are exploiting their monopoly positions and the trust granted them by the United States to line their pockets. Repeated investigations by the DOD inspector general, the GAO and CBS News have uncovered numerous instances of contractors massively overcharging DOD, helping boost these companies’ profits to nearly 40% – and sometimes as high as 4,451% – while costing US taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. TransDigm, Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Raytheon are among the offenders, dramatically overcharging the taxpayer while reaping enormous profits, seeing their stock prices soar and handing out massive executive compensation packages. Last year, Lockheed Martin received $46bn in unclassified federal contracts, returned $11bn to shareholders through dividends and stock buybacks, and paid its CEO $25m a year. TransDigm, the company behind the 4,451% markup, touted $3.1bn in profits on $5.4bn of net sales, almost boasting to investors about just how fully it was fleecing the taxpayer. The fact that a share of the profits from these lucrative contracts will flow back to the congressional backers of higher defense budgets in the form of campaign contributions – America’s unique system of legalized bribery – makes the whole situation even more unconscionable.

Let’s be clear. Defending the American people is not only about pouring money into the Pentagon. It’s about making sure our children go to good schools and will have a habitable planet when they get older. It’s about making sure that every American has a decent standard of living and can enjoy quality healthcare and affordable housing.

As a nation, the time is long overdue for fundamental changes to our national priorities. Cutting military spending is a good first step.

* * *

LOUISE FLETCHER with director Miloš Forman on the set of "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest." 

Fletcher, who won the #BestActressOscar for her iconic performance in the film as Nurse Ratched, was born on this date in 1934 in Birmingham, Alabama.

* * *

ONE REASON it’s so hard to set up beneficial systems is because in negotiations manipulators always push for the absolute maximum amount of gain they can possibly grab while good people only push for a normal, human-sized amount of space for themselves. You see this constantly in union negotiations and politics alike: people come to the negotiation table with demands that are viewed as “reasonable” by those in power and then are negotiated back halfway from that point of “reason” as a “compromise”, while those with the power grab up everything they can get their mitts on and walk back only if forced to. This has a ratchet effect over the years which sees ordinary people losing more and more power to the ruling class.

That’s not going to change until normal people stop letting the manipulators set the bar of what’s “reasonable” and start pushing out space for themselves with as much force and entitlement as bad people. People are going to have to stop coming to the negotiating table with their compromise, and instead show up with the demand to take back everything that was stolen from them — and more — with as much force as necessary.

— Caitlin Johnstone

* * *

painting by Kenton Nelson


  1. Casey Hartlip July 26, 2023

    Yesterday I saw numerous clips of Joe Biden from 2019 during the presidential campaign. He was snappy, aggressive and very alert. He’s now a shell of that now. Such a dramatic decline in the last 3 years.

    • Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

      It always does. Look at the extra amount of grey hair each president leaves with after 4 years… except for the orange qlown of course.

      • Harvey Reading July 26, 2023

        From the way the orange clown brushes his hair forward, his problem seems to be hair loss rather than graying (though he may have his hair colored). His hairdo, along with his vile mouth, was perhaps why certain people were (and are) drawn to him.

        I recall no instances when ol’ brain-dead Biden looked particularly alert…except maybe when it came to serving bankers. He is a cypher who exists to serve the wealthy while telling us lies to the contrary; a perfect running mate for the sold-out likes of Obama.

        Looks to me like another “none of the above” presidential election coming up. Lotta pure trash running from “both” parties. Maybe J’s ET will step in and liven things up (except they are probably light years from earth)!

        • Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

          Exactly why I’m voting for my Sacramento Hometown Hero: Cornel West.

          Best protest vote I’ll ever make in my lifetime. And I get to vote Green!
          I love voting for people that want to be public servants instead of corporate lobby shills.

  2. George Hollister July 26, 2023

    Miloš Forman directed a movie in his homeland Czechoslovakia in 1967, called “Fireman’s Ball”, that resulted in him getting the boot and coming. to the USA. There are subtitles, too small to read, but the movie is still a good one to see, particularly if you are a member of volunteer fire department.

  3. Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

    RE: REASON for lower pay

    Yes. Spot on Caitlin! This is why Sonoma County Environmental Health is willing to pay me $42.80/hr with a $15k signing bonus, whereas Mendocino County was going to pay me $29.69 /hr for the same exact position. Because Mendo thinks that’s a good salary compromise. Why did Mendo County drop the EH 1 and 2 position from open positions to closed a couple weeks ago? So they could open up the trainee “Environmental Tech” position for $22.15/hr Lets see if our public health can withstand the penny pinching.

    Here’s the job description from the Mendocino County HR website, so let me know how Mendocino is going hire someone at that rate? 2 Restaurant inspectors for the entire county and No Dept Director, I’m appalled, but not surprised.

    Environmental Health Specialist II Class Specification
    Class Code: 4039
    Prepared by Slavin Management Consultants for Mendocino County Government, 1999.

    Knowledge of:
    Applicable state, federal and local ordinances, codes, laws, rules and regulations and legislative issues.
    Basic principles of physical, biological and social science as related to public health and environmental quality control.
    Methods and techniques of inspecting and making investigations of hazardous material handlers, facilities and criminal
    Microbiology, chemistry, mathematics, statistical analysis, hydraulics, hydrology, science soil morphology and physics.
    Vector control measures.
    Proper food handling procedures.
    Proper design and operation of pumps, piping, valves, filter and other equipment associated with pools and spas.
    Nature, generation, use, treatment, storage, disposal, release and clean up of hazardous materials and waste.
    Design and operation of fuel delivery stations.
    Hydraulics associates with sewage systems.
    Correct English usage, including spelling, grammar, punctuation, and vocabulary.
    Internal departmental policies and procedures.
    External governmental bodies and agencies related to area of assignment.
    All computer applications and hardware related to performance of the essential functions of the job.
    Standard business arithmetic, including percentages and decimals.
    Record keeping, report preparation, filing methods and records management techniques.
    General office procedures, policies and practices, as well as knowledge of computer/VDT and other general office equipment.

    Skill in:
    Using tact, discretion, initiative and independent judgment within established guidelines.
    Using a computer to accurately and rapidly enter and retrieve data and information.
    Communicating orally with internal staff, citizens, and other departmental staff in order to give and receive information in a courteous manner.
    Operating and routine maintenance of general office machines such as copiers, facsimile machines, telephone systems, and two-way radio base stations.

    Mental and Physical Abilities:
    Ability to compile and evaluate data and make recommendations.
    Ability to read and interpret documents such as safety rules, operation and maintenance instructions, procedure manuals, etc.
    Ability to interpret lab results and prepare clear reports.
    Ability to understand and carry out written and oral instructions, giving close attention to detail and accuracy.

  4. Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

    RE: Calling the Flock

    Anyone else catch that we have an automated license plate recognition system in Ukiah called FLOCK? The company is called Flock Safety (no creepy christian overtones about playing God there)

    “Flock Safety is an American company that sells Automated License Plate Recognition technology (ALPR) to law enforcement agencies and neighbourhood associations.[1] The cameras read license plates and sent instant alerts to law enforcement officers when the cameras identify license plates that match those on lists of cars that are stolen or otherwise of interest to the police. Private citizens and businesses who own one of Flock’s cameras can use their own hot lists. Unlike many other ALPR systems, Flock cameras allow searches based on the car’s color and various other visual features.[2][3]

    Flock was founded in 2017[4] and has grown rapidly. As of February 2022, Flock’s fixed cameras have been installed in over 1,500 cities across the US.[5]

    In 2023, Atlanta police (Cobb County) credited a Flock license plate recognition system for helping them track down a gunman.[6]
    Products and services

    Cameras include the Sparrow, which does not send instant alerts, and the Falcon, which does. The Raven is an audio device that detects gunshots. Data can be shared between law enforcement agencies. The company hosts “transparency portals” like this one for Piedmont in California showing how data is used.

    While thousands of communities have adopted the cameras without debate, a few communities have had heated debates about whether Flock Safety cameras will protect the community or cause harm, especially to minorities.[7][8][9] The Electronic Frontier Foundation argues that ALPRs like Flock may create more problems than they solve. Flock Safety cameras and technology only captures data from vehicles and the machine learning is specifically designed not to identify people. Although Flock Safety claims their cameras reduce crime, opponents argue that there is no clear evidence for this.[10][11] The American Civil Liberties Union released a report in March 2022 criticising both Flock Safety’s business model and its products.[12] ”

  5. Eric Sunswheat July 26, 2023

    RE: “RAPE runs the spectrum of the population,” DeSantis tells me, “just like domestic violence. Generally, the men who rape still cling to old stereotypes about women…Men raised to think that women belong to them, feel they can do whatever they want to their wives and girlfriends.”… Lots of men can’t adjust to women as equals.”… Maybe the boys will adjust, maybe they won’t. — ED NOTES

    —>. July 20, 2023
    Millions of women around the world enter menopause each year – so why do we know so little about it? On this week’s 51%, we sit down with Dr. Heather Hirsch, founder of the Menopause and Midlife Clinic at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, to learn how we can meet menopause symptoms head-on.

    We also discuss the benefits and controversies behind hormone replacement therapy, how to know if it’s a good treatment option for you, and what you can do instead if you’re not ready to take the plunge.
    Guest: Dr. Heather Hirsch, M.D., MS, NCMP with Midi Health Care and author of Unlock Your Menopause Type: Personalized Treatments, the Last Word on Hormones, and Remedies that Work
    You can learn more about menopause at the North American Menopause Society website here.

    51% #1774: Dr. Heather Hirsch on How to “Unlock Your Menopause Type”
    51% is a national production of WAMC Northeast Public Radio in Albany, New York.

  6. chuck dunbar July 26, 2023

    Saw a wonderful performance at the Mendo Music Festival last night–The California Bluegrass Reunion, a band of virtuoso musicians, including 2 fiddles and anchored by mandolin player John Reischman, from Ukiah. No histrionics from this group, just very fine, greatly enjoyable music.

  7. Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

    RE: Failure to embrace the Mendocino Legacy = a missed opportunity now gone.

    “Supervisor Gjerde moved to approve the exclusion zone and arrange for a three year phase out of the existing grows. ”

    And here lies the ROOT of the problems in Mendocino County. A complete failure on the part of County officials to embrace the Cannabis legacy of Mendocino county. Hey, now that pot is legal, let’s put up new signs on the highway that declare Mendo the place of “Wine,Waves and WIlderness”!!! Meanwhile everyone else on the planet knows Mendo as the place where the BEST WEED in the world comes from. County officials? Clueless? No… I think they knew, and purposely cut off their nose to spite their face.

    Increased code enforcement on cannabis growers only? No pot tourism allowed? Make grower cooperatives illegal? (remember Emerald Grown co-op?) Exclusion zones for NIMBY retirees? How you like your property values now? I guess the flogging will continue until morale improves, eh?

    “Williams proposed increasing code enforcement in the exclusion zone area. That passed unanimously.”

    Scott Ward had the right idea, as he usually does. Matt Goines, who is now steering the cannabis department Ghost ship, is doing an amazing Job and for once the Cannabis growing citizens and producer groups of this county are happy with the choice. Besides those two shining rays of hope, this county is looking in pretty bad financial shape. But hey, that’s what happens when you look at your cash cow in the face, and then decide to kill it.

    My personal opinion is that it is already too late, and that it would take some serious backpedaling to get the cannabis economic engine running smoothly again. Why? Because our county officials aren’t very good at admitting their errors and taking corrective measures seriously. Can’t support the long standing legacy in this county because they can’t admit cannabis is a good thing. Years of stigma still taint the pages of reports and news articles about cannabis to this very day. Well, let me remind you all that cannabis never killed anyone. That’s the meth and guns that no one seems to be able to stop. Problems that plague every rural county in Every State, no matter what the cannabis laws are. I guess we can just sit back and watch Oregon and Colorado take our thunder (or Alaska Thunder Fu*& as the famous strain is called).

    Want to see this whole story in comic illustration? Check out Box Brown’s work:

    • Ted Williams July 26, 2023

      Specifically, how is pot tourism not allowed?

    • peter boudoures July 26, 2023

      When the BOS started to debate weather they would allow 10% of parcels to be cultivated this stopped all
      Momentum towards helping the small farmers who were already legal. The only people who benefitted were the realtors. Even the sellers had to foreclose and now resell during a recession in the cannabis community and a recession associated with the Covid pandemic. So now everyone who risked working during the pandemic were borderline homeless. It was one hell of a ride!

  8. Mike J July 26, 2023

    A House subcommittee (National Security, to Oversight Cmt) UAP hearing today was historic and clearly revealed stunning facts that ranking member Rep. Robert Garcia said should be taken in by the news media and addressed. Glenn Grothman, R-Wisconsin chaired.

    This was an extraordinary bipartisan display with Reps Raskin and Ocasio-Cortez locking arms with Reps Burchett and Luna.

    The testimony in particular given by David Grusch has basicly brought forth a confirmation of non human intelligences being present here.

    • Harvey Reading July 26, 2023

      LOL! Dream on. You are incredibly gullible. By the way, how come no word from SETI? You seem a little averse to answering, preferring to blather on about what lying politicians are saying. Nooze for ya: when pols say something, you’re better off believing the opposite more likely reflects reality. I really wish ET would show up and take you to its home planet, for dissection…providing ET has enough fuel for the trip back.

    • Chuck Wilcher July 26, 2023

      Ask Margie Greene who she believes those ‘aliens’ are. Why are they censoring her? Fair play for Marge!

      “I’m a Christian and I believe the Bible,” said Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.). “I think that to me, honestly – I’ve looked into it. And I think we have to question if it’s more of the spiritual realm. Angels, or fallen angels. And that’s my honest opinion.”

      • Mike J July 26, 2023

        Sadly, you would be surprised how many Defense Intelligence Agency, CIA, and Air Force officials are on the same page here as MTG. Back in Dec 2017, after the big NYT story, varied figures like Harry Reid, Chris Mellon and Lue Elizondo reported that many DOD and IC officials had this sort of fundamentalist notion that giving more attn to the UAP issue would draw demons further into our realm.
        It’s the High Strangeness features in close encounter cases that cause these ideas to take shape.
        Here’s a piece I wrote introducing high strangeness as a factor in suppressing attn and interest:

        • Harvey Reading July 26, 2023

          LOL. I trust spooks, politicians (appointed and elected), the clergy, and the military even less than I trust the ET true believers.

          When guvamint wants to shift public attention away from REAL issues, they turn to BS like what you’re peddling…and there’s a major election on the horizon, plus the world for them to conquer in the name of freedom and goodness. And, you fall for it; every time! Even after the tales fizzle out for a while…guess you use the interludes to concoct new stories.

          Humans are great believers, in all sorts of nonsense. It’s true that there is a sucker born every second. Your nonsense happens to be ET, and your loyalty to your chosen nonsense is truly amazing…to the point of insanity in my opinion. For others, it’s holy books, etc.

          “High Strangeness”? You are truly delusional.

          And, once again perfesser, what about the SETI silence? That’s a subject you won’t address, because it puts all the nonsense you spout to irreconcilable shame. Then your little games would be over, for good.

        • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

          The Allen’s of Anderson Valley, who are going through very trying medical and financial distress due to a recent car wreck, would be thrilled to hear any and all of this ufo stuff: they put on a very entertaining ufo show at the AV grange hall several years ago. Covered in the Mighty AVA by myself and an intern at the time, and if adequate search were made these reports could, for all I know, still be dredged up out of the archival tomb in which they were interred and reprinted here for everyone’s edification and/or derision…!

          • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

            There’s a screwy twist on Claude Cockburn’s trusty maxim at play in all this; that is, that we should believe no rumors until they are officially denied by the government — so then, when the government imprisons a whistleblower we know he or she or they were telling it like it is; but when they embrace and showcase a whistleblower, shouldn’t the reverse conclusions apply?

            • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

              Speaking of the Cockburns, did anyone see the “Embattled Reporter” sidebar in the new issue of Jacobite Magazine? It was Andrew! I don’t know what’s become of Patrick — he did a stint at CounterPunch after leaving The UK’s Independent and seems to have gone into retirement rather than die in harness like his brother Alexander and peer at the Independent, the superb Robert Fisk.

            • Mike J July 26, 2023

              Grusch followed the new whistleblower provisions re UFO programs that were enacted in the National Defense Authorization Act for this year. He interviewed 40 persons in special access programs. He was on loan from the national geo spatial agency (previously with AF and reaching Major) to the DOD UAP Task force and assigned finding out about special access programs.
              He was also shown photos, documents etc re alien craft and bodies recovered. He shared that with the dod inspector general.

              • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

                Sounds like a shill of the first magnitude . Ask any other commenter on this page if those qualifications doesn’t set off their bullshit detectors. Perhaps we need a new kind of Geiger counter that measures credulity?

                But let me repeat, your fellow enthusiasts and true believers are numerous and reside in Anderson Valley. Try and put a little something on the Allen’s Go-fund-me page… I have to send all of mine to my own daughter, who works for an MD and still can’t afford health insurance.

      • Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

        I honesty want to know what these “Christians” think about UFOs. Like if a tall grey big eyed alien came down in a flying saucer, and confirmed that Jesus wasn’t real, but they are… what would Christians do? Ooops… you mean were were wrong and pushing the King James translation of a 2000 year old story book for jewish kids as the Ulimate Guide book to truth and everything, and we were wrong? Oh no! we’re sorry.

        On a side note. RIP Sinead O’Connor. Thank you for standing up to the pedos and molesters that hide behind the Pope and his royal sex offenders. Bless your soul.

        • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

          Jamison’s no Christian. He’s a Hindu, like Craig Lewis Stehr.

          • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

            Also, check out my YouTube video, “The Lost Josephine Mine” which Mike recorded for me in his Ukiah apt.

            It’s all about these obsessions on ephemeral solutions to life’s challenges and how they can be absorbed into a bloodline for generations….

            • Rye N Flint July 26, 2023

              As Sinead O’Connor would say. Burn Babylon Burn!

              • Bruce McEwen July 26, 2023

                Sure, my cow jazz has been jostled out of vogue and I’m out of the studio anyhow so Please allow me to post a classified ad: Fender jazz bass, mint condition, fretless, flat-wound strings, hard case, $650; Guitar Research bass amp, $230; programmable loop attachment, $60. Many extras, email me at

  9. Stephen Rosenthal July 26, 2023

    “Williams didn’t deny, respond, apologize or explain.”

    Do tell.

    • Ted Williams July 26, 2023

      At the open, Supervisor Mulheren, chairing due to McGourty being home in isolation, explained there would be no back and forth, no Supervisor questions or statements during public expression. It’s not how I’d run the meeting — I like a conversation with the people — but it is the chair’s discretion. “Williams didn’t deny, respond, apologize or explain” could be more accurately phrased “Williams wasn’t allowed to deny, respond, apologize or explain.”

      Regarding my original answer to the direct media inquiry about whether an SEIU strike would impact the public, no, I don’t think a couple of days of unpaid time off would have much of an impact on most county residents. Most people primarily rely day-to-day on public safety (and roads). A month-long strike could potentially impact the county’s ability to meet mandates.

      The county is about $10M over revenue with current operations. Ideas like using finite reserve funds to give a raise now that we can’t afford a year out or giving raises based on hopes of cannabis revenue picking up aren’t resonating with the public. The county needs to live within its means. I’m the strongest voice of the five for market wages, but the way to get there is cost-cutting, not fantastical thinking. Ideas like, “hire more people, the state will fund it” are just not reality.

      • Stephen Rosenthal July 26, 2023

        Actually, these were what prompted my comment.

        From MCT July 24 comments:
        Okay, let’s try this. I think Bruce nailed it, despite your conjecture that “It was only fair to let Bruce’s imagination run wild for a bit because the truth is rather dull.” You are on record as stating it is important to attract and employ highly-qualified dynamic personnel. Therefore, what qualities and accomplishments does Trevor Mockel possess that makes him “highly-qualified” to be a county supervisor responsible for, among many other things, overseeing a budget of hundreds of millions of dollars and making final decisions on the hiring of executive level county administrators? What was it about your “conversation” with him that caused you to endorse him? Why are you supporting such a “dull” character? Specifics if you please, Supervisor.

        Those are questions that I and I’m sure others would appreciate a straightforward answer to. But I’ll ask one last question, admittedly speculative. It seems reckless and unethical that all five Supervisors would simultaneously, enthusiastically and with virtually the same language endorse the nondescript Mockel, essentially a paid intern (apparently no longer employed) for State Senator McGuire, simply because of a “conversation” with him. If you don’t believe me, check out the endorsements at the bottom of this link:
        Do you honestly think we should believe you?

        Your only response was “unethical?”.

        I’m through playing these cat and mouse games with you. You’re obviously unwilling to give honest answers to important questions. So I hold out hope that the voters of District 1 will realize that the fix is in and cast their vote for anyone except Mockel.

  10. Ted Williams July 26, 2023

    “Retired County Planner Scott Ward told the Board that they might be able to collect more taxes if they re-instated the old permit amnesty program (i.e., waive permit penalties for unpermitted buildings for people who fess up and come in from the cold) to get more structures on the tax rolls. The Board flatly ignored Mr. Ward.”

    I actually voiced support to Ward privately. It’s a solid idea. I’ll find a place to raise it for board support.

  11. Jim Shields July 26, 2023

    Have just a minor clarification to Mark Scaramella’s bang-up BOS report. Re: “Supervisor Mulheren’s sensible compromise suggestion to approve the exclusion zone but allow the existing grows (but no new ones) wasn’t acceptable to any of her colleagues.”
    That “sensible compromise suggestion” was the recommendation I made during public comment on what is really a non-issue issue, as in much ado but nothing.
    What I said was the Supervisors should approve the so-called “opt-out,” i.e., “exclusionary” application from the Redwood Valley neighborhood group, and for the Board to use their broad discretionary authority to grandfather in the three parcels under cultivation. It was, indeed, the most sensible thing to do, which is why it never went anywhere.
    Later in the meeting, Mulheren “polled” her colleagues on at least three different alternative motions, including my proposal. When polled on my recommendation, District 1 Supe Glenn McGourty said the proposal would not be acceptable to the neighborhood group.
    Early on, Mulheren went on the record opposing these “opt-out” zones, so she should be credited for polling her colleagues on the various options for an action motion.
    In any event, that whole session was another monumental waste of time, as has been the case with the entire history of the Pot Chronicles.
    Jim Shields

    • Stephen Rosenthal July 26, 2023


      I always read with interest and great appreciation your reportage, insights and opinions. The residents of Redwood Valley (District 1) were not done any favors by the BOS. I trust they’ll remember that all 5 of them prematurely and simultaneously endorsed the utterly unqualified Mockel and vote accordingly when it comes times to elect their next Supervisor. Anybody but Mockel!

  12. John Sakowicz July 26, 2023

    To the Editor:

    If Board Vice Chair Supervisor Mulheren can begin a Board meeting by inviting 1st District Supervisor Candidate Trevor Mockel — unanimously, prematurely and suspiciously endorsed by all five Supervisors for no reason at all — to the podium to lead the Board in the Pledge of Allegiance, as Mulheren did yesterday, Tuesday, July 26, then fair play should dictate that the Board should also invite the three other 1st District candidates to the podium to similarly lead the Board in the Pledge of Allegiance.

    I wrote to the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) this morning complaining that Mulheren’s action represented an implied political endorsement during a Board meeting.

    The other three 1st District candidates should also be submitting their own complaints to the FPPC.

    Below, please find the link to the FPPC’s electronic complaint form:

    At the very least, the FPPC should sanction Mulheren, and, as a corrective action, the FPPC should order the three other 1st District candidates be invited to lead the Board in the Pledge of Allegiance in three other future meetings at their convenience.

    Carrie Shattuck are you listening?

    Adam Gaska are you listening?

    Madeline Cline are you listening?


    John Sakowicz

    • Adam Gaska July 26, 2023

      Loud and clear John.

  13. Jim Shields July 26, 2023

    Thank you for the kind words, Stephen.
    And you’re right about District 1 voters. They won’t forget about any of this. Mr. M’s campaign cratered the day of the Big Five endorsement.

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