- Ernesto's Crash
- Blue Meadow Open
- Homeless Count
- Woodhouse Unspooled
- Yesterday's Catch
- Gang Activity
- Financing KZYX
- Human Consumption
- Public Transit
- Bail Prior
- Final Nag
- Art Works
- Extreme Energy
On May 20, 2015, at approximately 4:07pm a 2003 Toyota Corolla was traveling westbound on Highway 128 at approximately milemarker 21.50. The Corolla was traveling at an unknown speed and for an unknown reason traveled off the south shoulder of Highway 128 at mm21.50. Subsequently, the front of the Corolla collided into a tree. The driver [Ernesto Contreras, 18, of Boonville] was trapped in the vehicle and was unresponsive. Good Samaritans stopped and observed the vehicle full of smoke. The Samaritans were able to pull the driver out of the vehicle just as the vehicle caught fire. The driver was pronounced deceased on scene by emergency personnel. Alcohol does not appear to be a factor in this collision. The cause of the collision is still under investigation. (CHP Press Release)
BLUE MEADOW FARM IS OPEN
First Sugar Snap Peas
Walla Walla Onions, Leeks
Red Russian & Lacinato Kale, Spring Mix
Heirloom Tomato, Pepper & Eggplant Starts (a few)
2014 Garlic & Walnuts
Blue Meadow Farm, 3301 Holmes Ranch Road, Philo, 707-895-2071
(— Pam Laird)
OUR MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT claims that the County's homeless population has declined. The Department says it counted heads in a process they called Point-In-Time Survey conducted in January. The subsequent report to the Supervisors by the Department said they couldn't find some people and a lot of the younger homeless they did find refused to talk to the enumerators. 112 homeless persons were alleged to be in emergency shelters, 40 in transitional housing, and 880 people were found somehow, some way for a total of 1,032 homeless people.
THIRD DISTRICT SUPERVISOR TOM WOODHOUSE was Paul Lambert's guest on KZYX's Mendo Matters, Thursday morning, May 21, 2015. Here are some excerpts.
Lambert: You voted against having an ordinance to stop or investigate hack&squirt. Why did you do that?
Woodhouse: I believe the motion before us was to have a six month study and at the end of that time period come to some decision and in the meantime ask the timber companies to all stop using imazapyr and herbicides on their land. Some of the problems with that are, if they don't use that, if they don't deal with the tanoaks somehow they cannot log the property and do their timber harvest plans. This has been a process they have been using for 25 years and it's reaching the point now that with drought and all our awareness of the effects of herbicides that it really is an unacceptable practice that we want to put an end to. I don't use herbicides on my land. We went ahead and asked Caltrans not to use them on the mitigation land [for the Willits bypass]. So I am concerned about herbicide use.
Lambert: But having said you oppose herbicide use, why did you vote against having that study done?
Woodhouse: It was a — to voluntarily request that they do it on their own to stop for six months during the study. They were not going to stop. I've been dealing with them directly. So that part was ineffective. And the study, whether it was the best done study ever, there is a lot of stuff out there that could prove yes or no, squirt hack or don't hack, one of the sides would not agree with the results. So it's not an inclusive specific, and there was no funding for it. I'm choosing to work behind the scenes with MRC to encourage them, they have to be recertified again this fall. They are the ones under the pressure. They are the ones with the dead trees all over their land. They have to begin making concessions and do something. I didn't feel that that approach would work and the majority of the board agreed with my position. But I understand the emotional look of what the dead forest looks like. It's scary.
Lambert: Have you met with the opponents of hack&squirt?
Woodhouse: Yes. Yes. That's been a privilege. A lot of the people in Supervisor Hamburg's district were very adamant and really the reason this all surfaced was that MRC had put some logging plans, THP's in that area on the south coast and that fired up the old anti-timber war sentiment. And they were trying to use hack&squirt as a good reason to stop the logging and change things. And it is a good reason. We need to make a change in this. But it needs to be in cooperation and effective, not a six-month delay and then back to business as usual.
Lambert: Do you yourself have a personal timetable of how long before you would like to see hack&squirt stopped?
Woodhouse: I think it's been in use in different forms for 25 years. I think we're five years late already in having it stopped with our awareness. I'm optimistic we are going to make steps that will slow it down and I want to stop it as soon as we can. Any hacking and squirting done this spring, they do it I think in June and July and then again in September October and it has different effects. But to me, I'm going to push to stop the early spring herbicide use and I'm speaking to the company and going higher up the ladder. I am also going to talk to the certification people. It's time to make a change so people who really want to do something, it doesn't take hysterical attacks, it takes the facts being drawn out, raise the conversation, write the companies letters, be positive, be clear and articulate and I think we can accomplish anything. It's easy to get together to stop things, but to really create something and I think we are trying to create a better logging environment, I think a lot of people are actually against logging so they are not interested in making a more productive logging environment. But I do believe in using our natural resources, so that's the first question we all ask ourselves, do we believe in harvesting the timber in a sustainable way? Do we believe in using the gravel? Do we believe in using our natural resources here to have an economy? If we are not in agreement with that then we are just on opposite sides because I think that's the core of the way we have to move ahead to have legitimate jobs and a real tax base.
Lambert: How much money do you— no. Do you know how much money the logging industry contributes to the economy? Or how many jobs they have?
Woodhouse: I believe it's our biggest employer. MRC as 300 employees and they would say that affects — movement around the money affects about 3000 people's lives, so it's a big contributor. So to tell them to do something that might upset that or cut our economy it would be destructive to ourselves. It would be absolutely correct if you're main and only goal was to stop herbicide use. But we have to balance some things with reality. I know it takes patience. I agree. I am not a radical who is willing to demand things happen my way immediately, it just doesn't work that way.
Lambert: What I'm hearing is that you are against hack&squirt. You voted to ask Caltrans not to use herbicides on the mitigation lands. But you just don't think it's practical to call for a six month voluntary moratorium because they probably won't do it anyway.
Woodhouse: I want to make one other comment so we can all be thinking about hack&squirt more clearly. The option to the public would be in 2016 to have something on the ballot. And that's what people are proposing to do. If that happens it would probably be sued by the timber company and that would allow them [phone system problems.] To do the ballot initiative in 2016 means we have hack&squirt this year and next year then if it's sued that would be another year so that's three years. That to me is not viable. It's probably where we are headed. I think it would pass. I think most people are against herbicide use.
Lambert: So you think it can't be stopped sooner?
Woodhouse: I'm hopeful, yes.
* * *
On his political views—
Woodhouse: You were asking about one of the things I've learned being a supervisor and one of them is I have a lot of beliefs on every topic and we think everything in our minds makes sense but when you have to articulate that and respond to endless questions it's hard to pull everything together in our minds and our belief systems together. So I have been accused of being a conservative during the campaign which I thought was hilarious because I think I'm a very liberal open-minded person on all the subjects. I'm constantly changing and adjusting my beliefs as I gather more information. You do have a core belief of who you are and I'm very strong and stubborn in that, but there is an endless amount of knowledge out there and I appreciate all the input from people who have given me good information and we have had deep rich discussions and sometimes disagreements but there is a lot of very smart people out there around here. It would be nice if we could work together and build a stronger community because the needs are getting great out there.
* * *
Woodhouse: People are looking to government. And even [Sheriff] Tom Allman will tell you, please don't look to government. We are not going to save you. He tells the people in Covelo and Laytonville they need to have a firearm. They will be on their own in a natural disaster for a number of days. And we think government can do everything without the funding and it really absolutely cannot save us. We are what is going to save us. So if we cannot get along in times of what now are still abundance for a lot of people then what are we going to really be like when things get tough?
Lambert: Do you think things are going to get tough?
Woodhouse: I think it's inevitable. We are becoming a poorer country because of the way it's being run and the money is all being sucked out to the top and there is less opportunity for young people. Yes, it's tough and it's going to get tougher. We are very very lucky to have all we have now. We have plenty right now that we can share with each other.
Lambert: You don't sound like a conservative sometimes.
Woodhouse: I know. I'm a mixture. And I don't mean to be unclear about my answers but I believe each thing I'm saying and somehow they fit together and I think the whole boxes that we love to put each other in just don't work anymore. Life is very very complicated. I think we all agree we care about children and a better training and they deserve our love. It's not working right now and if we are not doing that all the other things, the sheriff, the roads, the mental health, it doesn't matter. It's not going to work. So we really need to redefine what our preference is and get busy.
* * *
On pot grows and plant counts—
Woodhouse: If you look at all the environmental and wildlife damage from the huge pot grows that nobody is talking about, absolutely no one cares. That's ridiculous.
Lambert: What do you mean, no one cares? It sounds like you care.
Woodhouse: There is no enforcement of it right now. I'm going to sit down with Tom Allman and ask him how we can do something about the largest grows. They are bulldozing off the top of mountains, putting huge greenhouses over their property, sucking the watersheds dry. There is no water for the fish. People ask about increasing the plant count for marijuana — that's not my number one choice. I prefer to have the fish in the streams than a higher marijuana count for people. That industry is going to go through change eventually. We are always in denial about change and it's the one thing you can count on happening.
CATCH OF THE DAY, May 21, 2015
CHARLES BARTMAN, Redwood Valley. Resisting arrest.
CAROLINE BELDEN*, Ukiah. Domestic assault.
CURTIS BETTENCOURT, Fort Bragg. Under influence of controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia.
KEVIN BETTS, Willits. Under influence of controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, failure to appear, probation revocation.
CLEVELAND CARR JR., Violation of community supervision.
CHRISTOPHER FRANCE, Willits. Vehicle theft, probation revocation.
JEROME MCMURPHY, Ukiah. Failure to register, parole violation.
ROBERT MITCHELL, Pot cultivation and possession for sale. Armed with firearm.
STEVEN MOSES, Ukiah. Receiving stolen property, possession of stolen weapon.
MORGAN MURPHY, Fort Bragg. DUI, child endangerment.
JOSE RANGEL-MARRUFO, Willits. Under influence of controlled substance.
WALLACE STONE JR., Willits. Domestic assault.
JOHN SULLIVAN, Ukiah. DUI, resisting arrest.
DANIEL TAYLOR, Ukiah. Violation of community supervision.
ROBERT VALADEZ, Ukiah. Drunk in public.
JOHNEEN WEBBER, Willits. Probation revocation.
*Special Caption Contest for Ms. Belden’s booking photo: Our starting entry: “Why’d I wait so long?”
UKIAH POLICE SEEING UPSWING IN GANG ACTIVITY
By Justine Frederiksen, Ukiah Daily Journal
While presenting his proposed budget for the next fiscal year, Ukiah Police Chief Chris Dewey shared both good and bad news with the Ukiah City Council.
“As of today, I can announce that the police department is at 32 sworn officers,” Dewey said, adding that he made a job offer this week that was accepted, finally bringing his total number of hired officers to the number that the council approved more than a year ago.
Dewey has been recruiting intensely at Ukiah High School and Mendocino College for local candidates to join his force, hoping that hiring residents with strong ties to the community will mean his department can keep the officers it trains, rather than lose them to higher-paying agencies nearby.
However, Dewey said that means a lot of those officers are young, and not all of them are available to patrol, as some are still in the police academy, some are still training on the job, and others are out with injuries.
“We’re still about five short of having 32 officers available,” he said.
After sharing the good news of finally reaching 32 officers, Dewey said that unfortunately, those officers are being confronted with a significant increase in gang activity.
“We haven’t seen that in years,” Dewey said, attributing the increase in activity to many factors, including AB109, or Public Safety Realignment, a bill designed to reduce the number of inmates in state prisons, and the fact that many of the offenders arrested years ago are now out of prison.
“Now the people sent away are returning, scarier than ever,” said Council member Jim Brown, who retired in 2013 as the chief probation officer for Mendocino County.
“It is by far my biggest concern as police chief, and should be the council’s, too,” said Dewey, describing the events of last week for his officers as including a stabbing between suspected gang members, and a large fight in a public park, which was also believed to be related to gang activity.
With only three officers on each shift, Dewey said his department “doesn’t have a lot of time for pro-active police work, such as crosswalk enforcement or speeding citations.”
Last year, the city’s violent crime rate increased, with a total of 347 reported incidents that included 318 assaults, 21 robberies and eight rapes. No homicides were reported in the city, and haven’t been since 2008.
Calls for service also are increasing, as 2014’s average was 87 a day, up significantly from 2013’s average of 68. To combat this, Dewey said he hired more Community Service officers to help respond to many of the calls that don’t require sworn officers, and his department tries to encourage people to report non-emergency crimes online.
This past year, he also launched a volunteer program that has two active volunteers and two more still being screened.
One of the UPD’s CSOs, Nancy Sawyer, has also been working closely with the city’s business owners to help prevent crime by changing their surroundings. At the Orchard Plaza, for instance, the landscaping was cut back to discourage transients from camping in the middle of the parking lot, and a payphone near an ATM was removed to discourage loitering and harassment.
As for his budget requests, Dewey stated that the department needs to buy two new police vehicles at $60,000 each for a total of $120,000.
As for what his department still needs, however, Dewey said it needs to “designate officer time to the city’s Code Enforcement Program,” to have a “designated Traffic Officer” and to replace the department’s existing speed trailer, which is 23 years old.
The Ukiah City Council is hearing from each department this week as it prepares to vote on the city’s next budget within the next few weeks.
HAPPY PLEDGE DRIVE
Through consistently bad management KZYX hemorrhages half a million dollars every year. And all the while that same bad management lies to you that they need more and more money to stay on the air at all.
by Marco McClean
The board of Mendocino County Public Broadcasting — more simply said: KZYX — pays Mary Aigner and David Steffen some amount that they won't disclose even to the paying members. It's probably $40,000 per year each. And their "operations" person is probably paid $40,000 a year, and John Coate is paid $60,000 per year, during which he fakes up a couple of financial reports and apparently once per decade calls the neighbors to have them cut down a tree that's grown in the way. Just those four people's pay totals to $180,000 every year — the equivalent of 3600 / three thousand six hundred (!) yearly fifty-dollar $50) memberships, which is way more active members than KZYX has or had or will ever have. So none of the membership money nor donated money supports the station in any way; it can't buy replacement equipment, nor solve engineering problems, nor establish a downtown studio in the county seat, nor pay the airpeople, but it all goes to enrich a handful of entrenched bureaucrats who are not making the station better by their presence but are simply entrenched there. Every time John Coate tells the board that he can't improve the scratchy signal or the STL path nor do crucial maintenance or set up that important studio in Ukiah — much less move the main studio to Ukiah — nor [fill in blank] until a miracle occurs to produce more money — I wonder: what prevents the board from seeing that they have that money already and that they've always had it? It's just constantly vanishing to pay John Coate to lie to them that they don't have enough money. And they are paying him with the money he's lying to them that they don't have, and the most positive thing you can say about what he does for the radio station is: he sucks money out of the system so it won't feel all bloated.
I just read John Coate's latest state of the station report, where he crows proudly about the KZYX news department and how it's come "roaring back", as though he's responsible for something monumental and laudable. Look: there was a news department at KZYX up to 2008, when John's first act in office was to destroy it and fire everyone so there would be money for him to be paid to do things like dispense with the news department. Because, eh, who needs hard-hitting local news? Ya gotcher classical show and your jazz show and your hippie wind-music shows and Prairie Home Companion and that should be enough for ya. Oh, wait, that's right, he also dumped A Prairie Home Companion, the most popular show they ever had. Finally, in 2015 — that's seven years later, but who's counting? — after a threat over the technical illegality of his — I'm going to say this again — eliminating the entire news department in favor of paying himself, he assembles a thin short shadow of that news department, and contact information for the individual newspeople isn't even made available on the website (just as the boardmembers can't be contacted except by going through Stuart Campbell) ("We like it that way," Stuart wrote to me), and that's just one example of how much KZYX has improved under J.C.'s occupation. The news department hasn't "roared back" but rather mewed piteously after having crawled part-way back up the side of the hole he and his weirdly compliant board kicked it into. Watch them kick it back down when it gets up on its hind legs again.
John Coate is a fraud. KZYX isn't improving; it's merely continuing to exist in a fugue state. And here is how little it has really cost for KZYX all along to keep microphones plugged in, and do a touch-up here and there on the official paperwork, and pay for a couple of IDSN-linked studios, and internet service and web hosting and telephone lines and STLs, and pay to energize the really very small main transmitter and the two teensy translator stations (translators use about as much electricity as a single back-porch light bulb), and tower space rental, and music publishers' fees and so on, and even computerized bookkeeping — the whole operation and overhead; everything, all of it really costs less than $50 a day, meaning way less than $20,000 a year, which is a very small fraction of just the annual grant from Uncle Sugar. Add $30,000 to pay for NPR shows, if they must, and the total comes to less than $50,000 a year. Which is half a million dollars per year less than they're constantly flushing away under John Coate's "financial genius" guidance. Also I've met him. In person, as the face of the station, he is a testy, insecure/angry man who literally ground his teeth when he spoke to me. And it's not just when he speaks to me or speaks in private; if you've ever been to an MCPB board meeting or watched one on television you've seen this. It's who he is all the time.
Even so, if he had wanted to be published in my paper or to be on my television show or to have his own radio show on any of the radio stations I've ever had anything to do with, he could walk in and do it. I'd have no objection; I'd encourage it. It would mean the man was growing and, you know, making an effort. But he doesn't want to do anything like that — he has no use for radio; he's afraid of it and he obviously hates radiopeople and hates the public. What was the reasoning behind putting him in his position of control over a radio station and everyone in it? And why does the MCPB board continue to unconditionally support him? It's baffling. It's crazy. Is it just because he looks like the dad in a family of J.C. Penney plaid-pyjama mannequins, except also scowling and seething? Because that's funny but it's not a good enough reason.
And they certainly don't need David Steffen. Take a look at their own various financial reports of the past few years, as incomplete and internally conflicting and confusing as everyone knows they are deliberately made to be. David Steffen's efforts — whatever he and they imagine he's doing — barely return the station enough to pay him. Other stations get along fine without a David Steffen. And Mary Aigner — other stations that have programs equal to and better than shows on KZYX (I'm speaking here in terms of my show and KNYO, just for instance) get along fine without a tyrannical program director or any program director at all. And back to John Coate — what radio-station-improving and signal clarifying ability does the board see in him that might develop in some nebulous future? The only skill he has exhibited so far is to influence them somehow to keep shoveling cash at him and wherever he points while the physical plant continues to deteriorate.
If the airpeople are expected to volunteer their time and energy and talent, why is it beneath John Coate and Mary Aigner and David Steffen to similarly volunteer? If it's ridiculous to consider even mildly throttling back on the money diversion that John's and Mary's and David's salaries represent — which amounts to endlessly hemorrhaging many times the actual cost of running the station (see above) — how can the board continue to declare it ridiculous to pay the actual airpeople a meaningful stipend for the airpeople's essential work? If the board's reasoning is that John and Mary and David do better work for being paid, why should that not apply to the airpeople? They call the airpeople their "wonderful volunteers" — well, get John and Mary and David to wonderfully volunteer and they can be wonderful volunteers too, and the station will have hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to spend and never have to do another smarmy pledge drive ever again. Think of it: they could dispense with all their soul-shriveling lying about how much the station needs pledges and donations "to keep the great shows on the air." The board could just live and enjoy it and be people and do their own unique shows, if they're the sort of people who want to do radio and lift people up to do radio, and if they're not, why are they on the board of a radio station?
The purpose of a community radio station is to provide a place for people to do shows that just can't be done on commercial radio. That's what the whole lower end of the FM band was set aside for in the first place. It's dead easy to pay to keep a radio station on the air and do better, more interesting radio than commercial stations do. My show belongs on KZYX. From my point of view, when my show wasn't on the schedule there within six months of my offering it (in February of 2012), that was a measure of Mary Aigner's malice and incompetence, and by extension the malice and incompetence of the organization. I waited years before I started bitching about it, and before I started looking into how poorly the station is managed in general, and telling you people what I found out. By all means, pledge money during this latest in the endless series of unlistenable KZYX pledge drives if you can't help yourself, but keep in mind that when they tell you they need your money, that's a pants-on-fire lie. You've already paid and you continue to pay with your taxes whether you like it or not, and there's plenty of money to "keep the great shows on the air". The shows are not in any peril that the managers don't create themselves. When you give money to the current regime at KZYX, what you're really paying for is to keep me and people like me off the air there, and to keep people in power who don't deserve it, who aren't in it for radio and never were, but just for the money and the power trip. KZYX is like one of those cancer charities where the people managing the charity company keep all the net for themselves. Or even more like Scientology, because it's not even a charity, and it relies on very simple 100-year-old technology. In the case of Scientology, it's tin cans and a galvanometer and official secrecy and compressed gaseous horsepucky. So you see it's very similar.
I recommend that if you have some radio money burning a hole in your pocket you give it instead to 107.7fm KNYO-LP Fort Bragg, where every underwriting penny goes to improve the station. KNYO is not funded by a government grant, and though it isn't luxurious and its broadcast reach isn't far there are facets of its operation that are ingenious and fascinating, such as a new system that lets airpeople do their scheduled shows by live remote from anywhere there's reliable internet access, and there are retro facets — we have a brilliant old piano now, right there in the station's downtown storefront performance space — and KNYO does it all on 1/50th of KZYX's absurdly inflated budget. Contact Bob Young: email@example.com to support KNYO or even to get airtime for your own radio show. There are good slots open in the schedule. It's easy and fun, and you can do it.
WHY NO MORE CARS IN 2050
There are two main reasons: too many people and too few nonrenewable resources.
Population of earth:
1950’s: 2.5 billion people
Today: 7.3 billion
Year 2200: 11 billion (low projection), 17 billion (high projection)
We add 210,000 people on earth every day, 80 million a year, 1.5 million more a week, 9,000 more every hour, 150 new humans every minute.
The world’s population was about 1 billion in 1800, 2 billion in 1927 123 years later, 3 billion by 1960 only 33 years later, 4 billion in 1972 only 14 years later, 5 billion in 1987 only 13 years later, 6 billion in 1999 only 12 years later, and 7 billion in 2011 only another 12 years later. Even though global growth is down by 50%, there are far more people having babies now than ever before, which makes a net gain in population.
America now has 320 million people, each of whom, over his or her lifetime, generate 169 times as much CO2 into the atmosphere as does a child in Bangladesh. The projection is for the U.S. to have 420 million by 2050, mostly due to immigration, both legal and illegal. If everyone on earth lived as Americans do, it would take 5 planet earths to supply all they consume. A 2% rise in earth’s temperature will put all coastal cities under water; a 4% rise will end human life on earth; a 6% rise will end all life on earth. We are steadily raising it.
Experts all agree that if we keep using up nonrenewable resources at our present rate our way of life will end by 2050. Of the nine “planetary boundaries” we have already crossed four of them: deforestation; extinction of plants and other species (at a rate 1000 times higher than nature normally does, one species goes extinct every hour); the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere (normal atmosphere is 225 parts per million, and today it is 400 ppm); and the poisonous runoff of pesticides into the ocean. 90% of the large fish in the ocean have been wiped out by overfishing.
Between the years 1800 and today the U.S. use of NNRs (nonrenewable resources) increased by over 1600 times, from 4 million tons to 6.5 billion tons. Today, 63 of the 89 NNRs that enable our modern industrial existence are already scarce globally. We are overusing our renewable resources by about 50%, such that by 2030 we will need two earths to provide enough of them.
Our oxygen comes from trees and already half of the world’s forests have been cleared already. We cut down 18 million acres of forest every year, the area of Panama. The result of all of this is this: much higher prices; much more pollution; biodiversity loss; crashing economies; declining standards of living, more wars over oil and fresh water.
If we humans wreck our planet, and make human existence impossible, the universe will not care at all. Nature will not blink an eye. The new god “T” technology might save us, and in time, but probably not.
Lee Simon, Loving, Virginia
ON-LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY: TRAIN TRAVEL IN OTHER PLACES.
Last year I took a morning TGV train from Monpelier in southern France to London. The terminal was a cool modern structure. I bought some pizza, sandwiches and drinks in the cafe to take along. The young lady who waited on me was charming and cheerfully brushed off my apology for my terrible French. The ride was comfortable and the fall scenery was easy on the eyes.
I had to change trains in Lille and passed through British customs where the agent, looking at his computer screen seemed to know more about me than was on my passport. In London I raced to the cabstand and was picked up by a young lady driving a vintage cab. I asked her if she could get me to a theater in Central London in time to catch the opening. We had a nice chat as she wove through back streets and across traffic and we made it with minutes to spare. I gave her a tenner for a tip and she exclaimed, “That’s too much!” I told her that she had done what I thought impossible and thanked her for a fun ride. The play was great.
JAMES MARMON WRITES:
Within 3 days after I informed the Crescent City Times that their county was one of the eight counties accused of violating citizen’s constitutional rights, Del Norte Superior Court changed their website regarding bail requirement for traffic tickets. I find it interesting that the public there was unaware of the ACLU’s accusations until I contacted the online newspaper. The Crescent City Times staff are investigating the issue and will hopefully will publish something soon so that the Del Norte County citizens are totally informed.
On Sunday May 17, 2015 Del Norte County Superior Court website read as [italics added]:
Requesting a Trial in Person or by Mail
You may schedule a future court trial on an infraction by mail or by appearing in person, at the Traffic division clerk's office by your due date. Bail is required for court trials. You must bring in your courtesy notice or information containing your Case Number, Docket Number or any DMV correspondence.
Requesting a Trial by Declaration (Written Statement)
According to Local Court Rule 18.8, the defendant may elect to have a trial by declaration of any charged infraction. You have the option to conduct some correspondence with the clerk and court by mail, but you must appear in court should the infraction require a mandatory appearance. This Trial by Declaration should be requested on or before the appearance date shown on your ticket. Your case will be decided without requiring that you appear in court. You must post full bail prior to the trial date, and enter a plea of not guilty. The Judicial Council forms that are needed can be obtained in person at the clerk's office or by requesting by phone or mail to receive the forms by mail. The forms may also be photocopied from the county Law Library or downloaded from the Judicial Council Website.
On Thursday May 21, 2015 The Del Norte Superior Court website read as:
REQUESTING TRIALS FOR TRAFFIC TICKETS
If you wish to plead not guilty and contest the ticket, you must notify the clerk in person, by telephone or in writing no later than the appearance date and time on your ticket or courtesy notice.
You may choose which of three methods below to challenge the ticket. Call the court clerk’s office if you have any questions about whether an appearance is required or when and where to appear. The clerk may help you arrange a different date but you must request it before the time listed in your courtesy notice.
TOO BIG TO JAIL? This idea that some companies are too big to jail, it makes some sense in the abstract. In a vacuum, of course it makes sense. If you have a company, a storied company that may have existed for a hundred, 150 years, that employs tens or maybe even 100,000 people, you may not want to criminally charge that company willy-nilly and wreck the company and cause lots of people to lose their jobs. But there are two problems with that line of thinking if you use it over and over and over again. One is that there’s no reason you can’t proceed against individuals in those companies. It’s understandable to maybe not charge the company, but in the case of a company like HSBC, which admitted to laundering $850 million for a pair of Central and South American drug cartels, somebody has to go to jail in that case. If you’re going to put people in jail for having a joint in their pocket or for slinging dime bags on the corner in a city street, you cannot let people who laundered $800 million for the worst drug offenders in the world walk.
HSBC, again, this is one of the world’s largest banks. It’s Europe’s largest bank. And a few years ago, they got caught, swept up for a variety of offenses, money-laundering offenses. But one of them involved admitting that they had laundered $850 million for a pair — for two drug cartels, one in Mexico and one in South America, and including the notorious Sinaloa drug cartel in Mexico that is suspected in thousands of murders. And in that case, they paid a fine; they paid a $1.9 billion fine. And some of the executives had to defer their bonuses for a period of five years — not give them up, defer them. But there were no individual consequences for any of the executives. Nobody had to pull money out of their own pockets for permanently. And nobody did a single day in jail in that case.
And that, to me, was an incredibly striking case. I ran that very day to the courthouse here in New York, and I asked around to the public defenders, you know, "What’s the dumbest drug case you had today?" And I found somebody who had been thrown in Rikers for 47 days for having a joint in his pocket. So—
In New York City, actually, it’s not illegal to carry a joint around in your pocket. It was decriminalized way back in the late '70s. But with part of the now past stop-and-frisk, what they do is they would stop you, and then they would search you and force you to empty your pockets. When you empty your pockets, now it's no longer concealed, and now it’s illegal again. So they had — in that year, they had 50,000 marijuana arrests, even though marijuana — having marijuana was technically decriminalized at the time.
So, my point was: Here’s somebody at the bottom, he’s a consumer of the illegal narcotics business, and he’s going to jail, and then you have these people who are at the very top of the illegal narcotics business, and they’re getting a complete walk. And that’s just totally unacceptable. — Matt Taibbi
ART WORKS! Gallery Route One’s Annual Artist Members Exhibition
June 12 — July 19, 2015
Point Reyes Station, CA
Reception: Sunday, June 14, from 3-5 PM
Salon: Sunday, July 19, from 4-5 PM, “The Artists’ Community— an informal discussion with the exhibiting artists. Art by the gallery’s 20 professional Artist Members: Mimi Abers, Johanna Baruch, Marna G. Clarke, Mary Mountcastle Eubank, Kellie Flint, Tim Graveson, Madeline Nieto Hope, Geraldine LiaBraaten, Candace Loheed, Diana Marto, t.c. moore, Zea Morvitz, Dorothy Nissen, Suzanne Parker, Dennis M. Peterson, Andrew Romanoff, Igor Sazevich, Marj Burgstahler Stone, Will Thoms, Vickisa, and Betty Woolfolk.
Gallery Route One
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956
On May 21st, twenty participants of Beyond Extreme Energy arrived at 7:30 A.M. outside of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington D.C. to protest the issuing of fracking permits, which enable energy companies to export gas extracted from shale. Later in the day, the same group marched around the offices of congress, and then went to the Department of Energy to voice opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The increasing collusion of governments and corporations exists solely for the purpose of controlling life on earth. You are being advised that postmodernism is lost in an endless maze of its own design. The warning lights are on until further notice. You are encouraged to remain situated in the fourth dimension, and fasten your seatbelt. Beyond Extreme Energy is thanking you in advance for your cooperation. — Craig Stehr, firstname.lastname@example.org