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Mendocino County Today: Monday, Aug 24, 2015

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PROGRESS MADE ON PETERSON FIRE

As of about 7pm Sunday night, Calfire assessed this latest Lake County blaze near Kelseyville at 215 acres burned, 30% contained: “Firefighters made forward progress increasing the containment line with a slight increase to the acreage burned. Air resources and ground crews were aggressive battling the rural vegetation fire in steep terrain, covered heavily in brush and with difficult access. Firefighters will work through the night toward additional containment and control.”

* * *

BIG WEEK FOR COREY HEINE

Heine
Heine

On Friday, August 14th, Ukiah Police responded to an escalating disturbance at the Thrift Store at 497 Leslie Street, Ukiah. Arriving officers contacted 44 year old Corey Allen Heine, who was yelling at store employees. Officers noticed a flat-bed pickup parked in the lot and recognized Heine’s dog inside the vehicle, as well as a backpack Heine is known to carry. Officers found the vehicle was stolen out of San Rafael, and located additional items inside the vehicle belonging to Heine. Witnesses at the store described where Heine had entered the store and sat at a table, and the keys to the vehicle were located there. Heine was arrested and taken into custody for vehicle theft, and as he approached the police vehicle he suddenly head-butted the vehicle causing a large dent. Heine was additionally charged with vandalism. Officers later obtained additional statements from witnesses who had seen Heine driving the stolen vehicle. A few days earlier, the night shift at the Safeway on South State Street called police at 1:45am when they heard “someone talking and banging in the store's attic.”

When officers went into the attic, which just happened to be over the store's pharmacy, they found Corey Heine, which begs at least one question: If the guy is about to break into the Safeway pharmacy, how come he's out a week later in a truck stolen from San Rafael?

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ON THURSDAY July 16, 2015 at about 1153 PM, Ukiah Police responded to 566 Stella Dr. due to the residents being awoken after hearing banging on the side of the home and then on the roof. The resident went outside to investigate and observed a male subject on the roof yelling and refusing to come down. Upon officers arrival they observed 44 year old Ukiah resident Corey Heine on the roof of the home. Heine was ordered off of the roof and arrested for prowling without incident.

* * *

COREY HEINE 30 YEARS AGO (Ukiah Daily Journal 1985, by the Journal’s inimitable sports reporter the late Glenn Erickson):

“A two-point conversion run by Corey Heine [running back for the Ukiah JV football team] was stopped short, about the only time all night he was stopped, for 6-0 with 2:15 to go in the first quarter. Heine scored from 11-yards out with 4:16 to go in the first half, Aaron MacLeitch scoring the first of his five placement conversions, for 13-0. In all Heine had four touchdowns with an aggregate total of 56-yards, about half of his 100 plus total yards gained rushing.”

* * *

THE COUNTY recently allocated $150,000 to train local cops in mental health program availability. In other words, pure blah-blah. At the same time, Sheriff Allman got the go ahead to apply for twenty mil to expand the jail to include housing and purely fanciful rehab for the mentally ill. Meanwhile, Boonville's beloved community newspaper, an inexhaustible fount of practical solutions to local government dilemmas, has suggested a County farm for frequent fliers both mentally ill and chronically drunk, a mental health van that would respond to 5150 calls to assess and direct the mentally ill to appropriate treatment schemes whether or not they exist, which they mostly don't, and this one just in: You know that abandoned convalescent stalag on deep South State Street, Ukiah? That visually repellant structure was once the last earthly stop for about a hundred of the indigent elderly, an evil send off for abandoned citizens we don't care to consider here, other than to say you don't want to be old, feeble and broke anywhere in this country. The County is now spending $15 million annually to treat the mentally ill to zero discernible effect — there are presently more free range nuts than ever on the streets of our county seat, for instance, without doing a head count in Willits or Fort Bragg. For less than two mil the County could buy that abandoned structure on South State Street, slap a few geranium beds outside, paint some sunflowers on its street-facing walls and house the habitual drunks in one wing, the more volatile of the mentally ill street people in the other, with all the County-paid helping professionals in the offices up front: Total package, excluding the helping pros who are already County-paid but don't do a goddam thing but go to meetings and eat gluten-free jelly donuts, $10 mil. Or less, much less with the present mental health apparat doing all the work of the place including the cooking.

BUT OUR SUPERVISORS, more pathetic by the week — check that — more pathetic on the weeks they even bother to meet — don't lead on any issue facing the people of Mendocino County, some of whom actually expect (and falsely assume) that the Supes provide leadership! ideas! fiscal prudence! intelligent strategies! Nada, from any of them. My fellow Mendolanders, we seem to have achieved a perfect entropic pitch. Nothing good will happen because nothing good can happen.

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SPECIAL JIVE-O recognition goes out to the president of the Point Arena School Board, Ron Miles for this remark at the board meeting of August 12th: "Our attorney said there were no Brown Act violations, ethics violations et cetera."

IN FACT, the Grand Jury confirmed that the PA school board often and freely paid no attention to the laws requiring public bodies to do the public business in public.

MOREOVER, the legal advice Miles was so proudly referring to comes from a Santa Rosa-based quasi-public law firm funded out of school money by the individual school districts of Mendocino County. These hacks and hackettes routinely dish out errant advice to outback school districts, and have you ever heard of a lawyer who took a bite out of the hand that fed him? The routine flouting of the Brown Act won't stop until the DA of this county moves on people like Miles. And the Grand Jury has done all the background work for DA Eyster! It's simply a matter of walking that baby on into court.

* * *

THE SUMMER OF 62

Bonus for Anderson: Braves Sign Marin Star

Ken Anderson, at Cal Poly in the late 50s
Ken Anderson, at Cal Poly in the late 50s

Ken Anderson, former baseball and basketball star at Tamalpais High and College of Marin, has signed a bonus contract with the Milwaukee Braves of the National League, it was learned yesterday. He signed his contract on June 9, for a $2,000 bonus and maximum salary of $500 per month. He was immediately assigned to the Waycross, Georgia team of the Class A Georgia-Florida League. Numerous scouts were bidding for the Marin star athlete. He started off his professional campaign in fine fashion, hitting a double his first time at bat. After an all-night plane trip from San Francisco to Georgia, he arrived in time to catch two hours sleep before reporting to the stadium. He was given a uniform and told to start in left field. And start he did, following his double with a pair of line drive singles to give him three hits in his first four at bats. He drove in one run, scored two himself and added a stolen based to his professional debut. After his first week in action he had collected nine hits in 20 at bats for a tremendous .450 battering average. The 21 year old Anderson played both basketball and baseball at Tam High and played the two sports for two years at College of Marin. He graduated from Tam in 1958. He was chosen as the Most Valuable Player on the College of Marin championship cage team of 1959 and was seleted as All-Golden valley Conference that same year. He led Cal Riemcke’s team in scoring during that big season. He was granted a basketball scholarship to Cal Poly after his days at College of Marin and played both basketball and baseball at the San Luis Obispo campus for three years. He hit above the .400 mark the first baseball season at Cal Poly and followed it with an even .300 mark the second year. This past season he finished his college playing days with a .360 average. He was signed after his graduation from Cal Poly. During the past four summers Anderson had been playing outfield and first base for the Tiburon Pelicans semi-pro baseball team. During his prep and college days, Anderson, who stands 6-4 and weighs 185, lived in Corte Madera. Now he and his attractive wife Marilyn and their ten-month old son Wayne live with Marilyn’s parents at 327 D Street, San Rafael. The new professional ballplayer plans to go back to college in September to study for a secondary credential in education.

(Marin Independent Journal, June 1962)

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ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY

Read this week, $1 Trillion auto loans now on the books, $1 Trillion student loans on the books. Gentlemen, what is offered for collateral on these loans? Where did this $$$ come from in the 1st place? And will the $$$ ever be paid back? I was just thinking the other day, look at all the new cars on the road now. The SUVs are looking bigger and more menacing than ever. Their drivers glare at me from behind tinted windows in air conditioned comfort, not a little angry because I’m ostensibly slowing down traffic on my ’54 Lee Enfield British army bike, only 1 solitary cylinder, top speed 54 MPH, making these esteemed citizens reach their destinations a minute or two later than they would otherwise. Royal Enfield slogan: “Built Like a Gun, Goes Like a Bullet!”

* * *

BOONVILLE, CIRCA 1970

CynthiaCoppleRaeGreco

(Cynthia Copple and Rae Greco visit Boonville)

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GREAT DAY IN ELK

The 41st fun-filled “Great Day in Elk” will be held this Saturday, August 29, from noon until 7pm.

The parade starts at noon on Highway 1, with floats, tykes on bikes, Smokey the Bear and lots more.  The carnival follows, with game booths and prizes and do-it-yourself craft projects for children.  There's a $100 grease pole, a massage booth, a watermelon-eating contest, sack races, bounce house, crafts fair, a cake auction, silent auction and a raffle.

Daytime food includes Terri’s famous oysters, tamales, Caesar salad, fresh baked focaccia bread, Moroccan lentil soup, old-fashioned hot dogs and lots of homemade goodies.  There will be fresh-pressed Greenwood Ridge apple cider and Elk's famous margaritas, along with soft drinks and beer.

The live afternoon entertainment includes the family-friendly funk of Soul Shakedown, belly dancing and juggling.

This year's dinner will be an outdoor barbecue from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. featuring grilled tri-tip with polenta, black beans, salad and dessert and stuffed Portabello mushrooms for vegetarians.

So, come to the “Great Day” in the coastal village of Elk, located 5 miles south of Highway 128 on Highway 1, and enjoy a fun-filled family day while supporting the Greenwood Community Center.  For more information call 877-3245 or go to www.elkweb.org.  No dogs please.

Rosi Acker - 877-1800 racker@mcn.org

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CATCH OF THE DAY, August 23, 2015

Blackwell, Boatwright, Gomez
Blackwell, Boatwright, Gomez

ERIN BLACKWELL, Ukiah. Drunk in public. (Frequent flyer.)

WILLIAM BOATWRIGHT, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

SALVADOR GOMEZ, Ukiah. Drunk in public. Probation revocation.

Lopez, Macias-Dockins, Marquez, Pelayo
Lopez, Macias-Dockins, Marquez, Pelayo

FRANCISCO LOPEZ, Ukiah. Fighting-Challenging, drunk in public, resisting.

LIBORIO MACIAS-DOCKINS, Ukiah. Dirk/dagger, probation revocation.

JOSEPH MARQUEZ, Ukiah. DUI, resisting.

BRAULIO PELAYO, Vallejo/Ukiah. Under the influence and possession of controlled substance.

Peters, Steinhardt, Stone
Peters, Steinhardt, Stone

MONIQUE PETERS, Covelo. Suspended license, false ID, failure to appear.

JAMIE STEINHARDT, Akron, New York/Fort Bragg. Domestic assault.

JOSHUA STONE, Covelo. Failure to appear.

Strazi, Thompson, Wedgley, Williamson
Strazi, Thompson, Wedgley, Williamson

RICHARD STRAZI, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.

DEVIN THOMPSON, Redwood Valley. Drunk in public.

SCOTT WEDGLEY, Fort Bragg. Failure to appear.

STEPHEN WILLIAMSON, Potter Valley. Pot sales, transport, furnish, suspended license.

* * *

ONLY ONE WAY? SHOOT ME THEN.

You deserve this:

OneWay

* * *

LISTENED to an excited Trump discussion on KPFA Sunday morning, the gist of which was that Trump represents the onset of American fascism. The left has been warning that America is on the brink of a national goose step at least since 1960 when yours truly got going as an infinitely elastic anarcho-commie-beatnik. Now, as an enfeebled senior citizen, I'm more of a cargo cult-like Bernie liberal. I'm preparing to vote Green when Bernie joins Hillary or Biden on the big stage at the fixed-wing Democratic convention in the predictable show of party unity. Trump? I think Trump is too stupid and too overtly vicious to get himself elected to much of anything, let alone the presidency. But, but, but if he's so dumb how come he's made so much money? Because he started with a real estate fortune amassed by his father. Most of our oligarchs started out that way. The function of our political system is to ensure the money stays right where it is.

I HAVE MORE faith in my fellow citizens than a lot of lefties, who tend to think Americans are so hopelessly out of it, so easily manipulated by for-profit media, so trivialized by that same media that they'll go for any damn thing, even a bellowing egomaniac with an endangered species living on his head.

OF COURSE there's the Fox News Axis which is fascist to the bone and, overwhelmingly, badly educated older white people. But how many young people, people under the age of forty, pay any attention to O'Reilly, Hannitty, and those weird blonde nazis like the one Trump clashed with? Never met a young Fox Newser myself but there's probably a few. The young fascisti stick pretty much to the Klan sites on the internet, don't they?

WHEN WE GET FASCISM in this country its front people will look and act like Bill and Hil, not some frother like Trump. They'll come across as lifestyle libs heavy on law and order, so heavy we'll get a form of martial law, and their inevitable scapegoating of Mexicans and Blacks will be invisible to most white people. In fact, it will look like a much tougher version of Clinton's Crime Bill. The Mendolib types will be all for it initially because they will staff it, as they do now in all the non-profits and government agencies who live off the non-competitive sectors of our crumbling society. And these people never hesitate to put the boots to anybody who threatens their interests. Straight-up fascism won't look much different than what we have now, which is a more and more muscular oligarchy. To run it, the fascisti will need someone a lot smarter, a lot more generally acceptable than the buffoon from New York.

* * *

Picasso

* * *

SHUFFLE OFF TO BUFFALO

(42nd Street)

Bert:

Now that we have had the rice and flowers,

The knot is tied;

Annie:

I can visu'lize such happy hours,

Close by your side.

The honeymoon in store

Is one that you'll adore,

I'm gonna take you for a ride.

Annie, Bert, Maggie & Girls:

I'll go home and get my panties,

You go home and get your scanties,

And away we'll go.

Mm mm mm...

Off we're gonna shuffle,

Shuffle off to Buffalo.

 

To Niag'ra in a sleeper,

There's no honeymoon that's cheaper,

And the train goes slow.

Ooh ooh ooh!

Off, we're gonna shuffle,

Shuffle off to Buffalo.

 

Someday, the stork may pay a visit

And leave a little souvenir.

Just a little cute "what is it,"

But we'll discuss that later, dear.

 

For a little silver quarter,

We can have the pullman porter

Turn the lights down low.

Ooh! Ooh ooh

Off we're gonna shuffle,

Shuffle off to Buffalo.

 

You'll go home and get your purses,

I'll go get my niece and nurses,

And away we'll go.

Mm mm mm...

Off we're gonna shuffle,

Shuffle off to Buffalo.

 

Matrimony is baloney

She'll be wanting alimony

In a year or so

Still they go and shuffle

Shuffle Off to Buffalo

When she knows as much as we know

She'll be on her way to Reno

While he still has dough

Oh, oh, oh

She'll give him the Shuffle

When they're back from Buffalo

— Al Dubin / Harry Warren

* * *

CALIFORNIA DREAMING, STILL

by Michael Brenner

Since the Gold Rush days California has tantalized Americans as that El Dorado on the horizon. Millions went to look for themselves. Tens of millions more have fashioned their dreams of its gossamer and tinsel. In more tangible ways, the Golden State has been a trend setter and pioneer. Hollywood is not in Iowa, Silicon Valley is not in Mississippi and the Kardashians of diverse genders do not strut their stuff in Oklahoma.

For 21st century California it has not been all roses and wafer chips. The state was hit hard by the Great Financial Collapse as one of the epi-centers of the housing bust. Cities went bankrupt and Sacramento at one point was on the brink of distributing script as the red ink flowed. There were drastic cuts in social services. Teachers were laid off in droves (82,000), parks closed. Jerry Brown took the gamble of a referendum in support of a sharp tax hike and won. Now, seven years after the earth parted, the books are back in the black as the national economy grinds its gears up the steep slope of recovery. That does not mean that the status quo ante has been restored. Much has changed – in ways that are instructive.

A few anecdotes mark out the post crisis terrain. Big projects are in vogue. The biggest of all is a high speed rail line connecting Los Angeles to San Francisco via the agricultural Central Valley. It is Brown’s legacy project. He somehow convinced Californians to approve billions in bonds to set the enterprise in motion. The Obama administration primed it with a couple of billion more when Florida and a few other states decided that mass transit – high speed or low – was alien to their life style. Total costs may in the end hit the $100 billion mark (official estimate is $65 billion) according to disinterested parties with experience of these mega projects. This makes it the priciest public works project in the country’s history – by far, if we exclude the Pentagon weapons programs. Where the rest of the money will come from is highly uncertain. Anyway, the first shovel of dirt has been lifted to begin construction on a 29 mile stretch from Modesto to Madera. Both towns offer high grade organic produce – so little commuter traffic can be expected. It is predicted that traffic will boom once the terminal links are made sometime in the next decade. That date is problematic since major slowdowns will be encountered once the line reaches the two metropolises. Anyway, by 2020 you should be able to make the run from Bakersfield to Gilroy in one and a half hours – presuming that you have something to do in either town or in Modesto or Madera along the way. Other legacy monuments are more conventional.

A state-of-play football stadium in Los Angeles modelled on the 49ers new home in Santa Clara 50 miles from San Francisco in the orbit of San Jose. The Oakland Raiders and San Diego Chargers will be lured to fill the seats – the latest example of major league sports’ game of musical chairs. The St. Louis Rams also have expressed interest in returning to the “Melanoma Belt” – thereby paving the way for the NFL’s all-time first menage-a-trois. The Santa Clara colosseum is conveniently accessible to Silicon Valley and, therefore, might entice more techie tyros to stake their tents close to their offices rather than strangle San Francisco with their presence. That city’s Mayor, Edwin Lee, has successfully promoted an arena for the Golden State Warriors near the baseball park. His original idea was to build it on piers over the bay as a symbol of his farsighted reign. That proved inadvisable as water levels are rising and that would necessitate restricting underground parking. Another strike against it was the unwillingness of fans, proud of their newly crowned NBA champions, to find themselves rooting for the Golden State Amphibians.

Jails and prisons continue to be a staple budget item and devourer of large sums. California spends more on prisons than it does on higher education. Although the state’s prison population is beginning to decline from its dim-witted three-strikes-and-you’re-out peak, conditions still draw the attention of the courts while the cost of upkeep draws the attention of parents worried about deteriorating schools. Still, all budgetary politics is inertial. Understandably then the city council is about to act on a proposal to construct a new jail for a cool $600 million. A bargain when one considers that this is but 1 % of the optimistic cost projections for the high speed rail system. Belatedly, some have questioned the need nonetheless since the present facility has lots of empty beds and under-utilized basketball courts. Promoters have found it necessary to shift ground, now arguing that the old jail is not earthquake proof. (As is the case for a few million structures in California). Not to act might leave the county and city vulnerable to post-earthquake law suits charging the authorities with failure to exercise due diligence, criminal negligence, or even inflicting “cruel and unusual punishments” on the inmates by forcing them to live in dread of a pending catastrophe – or perhaps all three. So this is something to bear in mind if you or your loved ones are contemplating any mischief that could lead to incarceration. You might wish to try Madera County, where the jailhouse meets earthquake standards, instead; reportedly, the transportation connections are excellent.

These macro projects around the state are chewing up a large slice of the monies that the economic rebound is sluicing into the state till. Another slice has been earmarked to stock a “Rainy Day” fund that could shelter the state’s finances were Wall Street excesses to generate a another meltdown. Prudence is now the watchword. The inescapable arithmetic points to the conclusion that there is not enough cash available to restore all the 2009 – 2012 cutbacks. Social services, especially those that target the poor and destitute, have regained most of their lost ground. That is a decent thing. California is not Texas, after all.

Other areas are faring less well. Education is the big loser. The combination of a sharp drop in state aid and local school districts’ inability to cover the losses generated by the housing crisis and collapse of real estate prices cuts education budgets to the bone. Tens of thousands of teachers and staff were let go. The damage has been considerable. It will continue as rehirings and other expenditure increases have yet to bring spending back to earlier levels. Indeed, now a teacher shortage problem has arisen as many of those sacked have moved into other vocations while enrollments and graduate rates in education degree programs have declined substantially.

That trend will not reverse itself since more is involved than shifting career preferences. Teachers as a professional group have been subject to a national campaign of vilification that disparages them as lazy, disengaged and responsible for the ills that allegedly beset American education. President Obama and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan have led the lynch mob, using demeaning language that is felt to be insulting. Moreover, teachers everywhere are being regimented as measures of evaluation and control are imposed that know no precedent or equivalence in other liberal professions. Yet, Californians and officials everywhere claim to be stunned that qualified people are fleeing or avoiding school teaching.

California public education is in troubled straits. Overall, students perform poorly on standardized tests – ranking 37th compared to other states. Of course, this has something to do with the relatively large population of ill prepared immigrants and a great number of students for whom English is not their native language. It will require more spending to meet that challenge.

Higher education has fared no better. Indeed, it is in worse shape. The University system’s nine campuses saw their budget cut by $1 billion at the height of the crisis. Much of that now looks to be permanent. The cardinal factor in the equation is that Jerry Brown is no fan of the University. He views it with aversion. There is a long and complicated history to this. In his college days, Berkeley was the magnet for many of his generation. Brown instead chose to enroll first in the University of Santa Clara and then transferred to a Catholic seminary, Sacred Heart Novitiate, which he left after three years. That was followed by a short stint at Berkeley.

He didn’t fit into any of the Berkeley scenes; he was intimidated by Berkeley. Brown, an outsider, kept his distance from the tumultuous events of the 1960s – cultural and political. During his first terms as Governor, he was cool toward the University but did not seek to diminish it.

That now is changed. Brown’s avowed intention is to downsize the flagship Berkeley campus and the other eight campuses. He is strongly resisting any major increase in funding. His plan includes a vast expansion of MOOC courses, introducing a three year degree option, and emphasizing the placing of greater weight on inculcating employable skills. The underlying philosophy is little different from that which guides the thinking of Governors Walker in Wisconsin, Abbott in Texas or several others. That has brought him into conflict with the Board of Regents headed by Janet Napolitano, also a Santa Clara alum. The Regents themselves have evinced only tepid commitment to the established model of the state’s higher education system. As elsewhere, they take pride in bringing “managerial efficiency” to the Ivory Tower. Still, Brown’s scheme was too radical and fraught with political consequences. They sought to fill the budget gap by raising tuition. Brown refused. Eventually an awkward compromise was reached: no tuition increase, some increase in state appropriations, the move toward MOOCs and similar ploys at all deliberate speed. This is the new California model for public higher education.

Perhaps to strengthen its fading claim to leadership of the avant-garde, University authorities have amended the standard student application form to include six gender identities. Protests at the exclusion of a seventh ‘til now undiscovered human sexual orientation may erupt when the Fall term opens. In truth, officials everywhere love this LGBTQ agitation – it diverts student attention from more contentious grievances like rape on campus. And a cost-free sympathetic response makes them look virtuous.

The menace that hovers over all of this is the drought. A shortage of water is California’s nemesis. It always has been. Southern California in its entirety gets less than 10” of rain on average per year. That is only enough to sustain a small fraction of the current population in Los Angeles, San Diego, et al. This aridity has been compensated for by the diversion of huge amounts of water from three locations: the Colorado River, Lake Owens and vicinity (recall Jack Nicholson in China Town), and mainly from the Sacramento River basin and San Joaquin River up north. The Sacramento accumulates a large fraction of the snow run-off in the Sierras. It is then transported more than four hundred miles southwards via the giant California State Water Project network.

The Southland needs even more water. So Jerry Brown has led a state effort to divert a bigger fraction of the Sacramento basin water. Opposition in the North comes mainly from those who point out the dire environmental consequences for San Francisco Bay and its estuaries as well as the project’s enormous cost. They will lose – as always. Do the demographic arithmetic and count the votes.

The simple truth is that southern California never should have been encouraged to grow into a giant conurbation. The drought is a reminder of what happens when you fool with Mother Nature. In principle, there are only two long-run answers: one on the demand side, and one on the supply side. The first is to limit what the water hungry population in the south wants. Since any such plan could not be enforced, the only way to achieve it would be to withhold investment in further schemes to funnel water to Los Angelinos. Since there is not enough Perrier in the world to fill the gap, population growth would have to shift elsewhere – like Buffalo and Cleveland.

At the supply end, there is an enormous amount of water available farther north in the Pacific Northwest – Oregon, Washington and maybe British Columbia. The idea has cropped up from time to time but a serious cost study is lacking. It could be as expensive as Jerry Brown’s choo-choo to nowhere. In addition, the citizens up there would have to agree; and it’s not clear what is in it for them. An imaginative inducement package is conceivable, including: life-time passes to Disneyland; free I-rings when Apple miniaturizes their I-watch; coupons for rides on the San Francisco cable cars; enrollment discounts at the University’s Santa Barbara campus; a premium ticket to sees a Giants World Series game in odd-numbered years; and perhaps a couple of all-expense paid day trips on the High Speed Rail line from Modesto to Madera.

The entire drought discussion may now be moot. The New York Times last Sunday boldly pronounced that California is “WINNING THE DROUGHT.” (Drought has yet to respond to the claim). Since The Times is our newspaper of record, Californians are free to start praying that the developing El Nino will weaken so that they can enjoy another sun-spangled winter.

California as a whole, like its great university system, is living on capital generated in the past by leaders who had a constructive vision. This generation is letting it run down. Their gaze is fixed on coping strategies while frittering away resources on the grandiose. That leads to an odd symbiosis: Hollywood and Silicon Valley generate much of the state’s money through exploitation of the frivolous and the trendy. The state spends much of that on other expressions of the frivolous and the trendy.

As true Californians know, now is the season when the Golden State glows – especially the North Coast above San Francisco. The fog recedes, the chilly temperatures rise, the relatively few tourists recede as well, and the campers are retired to their garages when the kids head back to their underfunded schools. It’s all yours: sea, redwoods, meadows – and, if you know the right spots, weak cell phone signals. Not a Silicon Valley prodigy or hedge fund predator in sight.

(Michael Brenner is a Professor of International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh. Courtesy, CounterPunch.org)

 

10 Comments

  1. BB Grace August 24, 2015

    “THE COUNTY recently allocated $150,000 to train local cops in mental health program availability. In other words, pure blah-blah. ”

    “pure blah-blah” translation: Mendocino County Mental Health plan = Call 911

    “Boonville’s beloved community newspaper, an inexhaustible fount of practical solutions to local government dilemmas, has suggested a County farm”

    Marijuana farm? Almond farm? Jail farm? Sheriff already has a vegetable farm, so if he took the $20 M and expanded his garden, I guess AVA would be happy?

    The idea of a “farm” nausiates me because it smacks of China’s and labor camps (stalag) throughout history .

    “You know that abandoned convalescent stalag on deep South State Street, Ukiah? ”

    The State would not approve. One reason for the Old Coast is this idea that “government type/ style” buildings are out because of stigma. Maybe why the Affinito accross from 10 mile Court didn’t win, though they could haver reworked the facade, rather what we have is state making county mental health find sites that “break stigma”.

    Mental Health now has a color: chartruse, which it wouldn’t suprize me to know county consumers are asked to wear chartruse stars to break stigma.

    BTW, According to the Culture Compentence Plan for MC Mental Health there is a “County Slogan”, “Speak Against Silence”. Hmmmmm

    • Mike Jamieson August 24, 2015

      My idea, and perhaps the developing idea taking root in Santa Clara county in the city of Sunnyvale, is far more realistic than this work farm/”wings” in a building solution AND will bring in money over time from those now free roaming our streets and bushes.

      My idea is safe grounds camping-hostel sites that will have either low rent or work-exchange. And, obviously make it easy for out patient delivery of medical and mental health services. And, also would be a site where commercial and light industrial and light agricultural activities would be encouraged. (And zoning would have to be changed to include all of that.)

      This is more in line with reality as well as the civil liberties assured us in the constitution. The AVA’s approach here smack of the heavy parent state approach of course.

      Besides, the city-county-state jurisidictions don’t have money for these large scale operations.

      The number of people in this county who would be qualified for wings a and b of the AVA’s visualized facility, as determined by the last survey earlier this year, is 797 people.

      • BB Grace August 24, 2015

        Develope your model.

        Why Sunnyvale?

        Bring in $ per grants? quotas? produce?

        “low rent” HUD, Section 8/ vouchers, gift certiicates?

        Government has the money, just look at how fast Fort Bragg came up wioth $1.3 mil for Old Coast.

        But still.. pass your idea through your planning department. “I’ve got this idea, where can I do this?..

        Think in ternms of what culture you are serving. If ity’s for housing Vets, you could have a big winner. I think it’s a great project and you certianly have experience and understanding the medical needs associated with the culture.

  2. Jim Armstrong August 24, 2015

    The blythe publication of Ken Anderson’s home address in 1962 shows a lamentable loss.

    My great-uncle was Paymaster of the City of Los Angeles from the 1920’s to the early 50’s. I have one of his busniness cards showing his home address and telephone number.
    A while back I tried and failed to even get the name of the current Paymaster.

    • Jim Armstrong August 24, 2015

      blithe, not Blythe where it is hot

  3. Harvey Reading August 24, 2015

    “To run it, the fascisti will need someone a lot smarter, a lot more generally acceptable than the buffoon from New York.”

    Or the babbler from Vermont, or any of the other scumbags approved by the wealthy rulers, from “either” party, including the phony Greens, who are nothing more than democraps in reality.

  4. Alice Chouteau August 24, 2015

    Perhaps if we use a different word, the concept is fine. Instead of ‘work farm’ think ‘rehab’. This would be a much needed facility for the chronic, long-term substance abusers, who might be unwilling or incapable of any sort of work.
    If one looks into successful, privately run rehabs, they are not located in towns and cities, where too many temptations make maintaining sobriety difficult. Typical drop in help is for the more functional, short term users, and that is not what the majority need.
    Those who can work, might find gardening with the aim of a healthful food supply very therapeutic. As for civil rights, this solution would protect the rights of residents,which are being ignored.

    A. Chouteau

    • Mike Jamieson August 24, 2015

      I see that the conservatorship laws, allowing detention of those who are gravely disabled (i.e. unable to feed, clothe, and shelter) themselves due to a “mental disorder” or alcoholism, still exist. Theoretically they could be used for these internment type sites. There are two problems with us, in these times, going forth with this type of way.

      One is court resources. The lack of them.

      Second is a complete lack of facilities and trained manpower for this. A situation not likely to change. I can remember it costing counties a $100,000/month for some of our star patients (conserved ones, not penal code ones). Or, more, if they frequently required 1:1 nursing coverage (like many of the “borderline personality” folks).

      These facilities are now devoted to housing penal code patients, many of whom I saw in earlier incarnations as conservatorship patients. I suppose this latter factor points to a need to “build” new solutions that both house the many who are without shelter as well as assure a real support network where they can actually get medically detoxed, get meds, and get help staying out of trouble.

      Also, there obviously needs to be a 5150 hospital (allowing T-Con stay lengths), like was mentioned below by the woman from the mental health board.

      BTW, a garden of the dimensions at least of what Plowshares has going is what I see for my safe grounds camping-hostel-etc communities.

  5. Bruce McEwen August 24, 2015

    Today’s reactionary is yesteryear’s revolutionary — a new turn on Camus’ dictum: But why are you speaking in the future tense? All of the prophesies of the 60s came to pass in the 80s. The SDS vanity plate on a Mercedes limo cruising the Five from San Diego to Seattle. It seems the strains of marijuana have gotten so intense that we can’t even recognize ourselves in the mirror anymore.

  6. Nancy August 24, 2015

    Regarding the two new mental health programs mentioned above, I would like to point out that neither was presented to the Mental Health Advisory Board for review prior to BOS approval. There are typically 2 Supes at each monthly meeting. Apparently neither thought it was necessary to inform the MHB about these two criminal justice policies directly affecting County mental health services.

    Better trained corrections officers and a brand new jail are not mental health treatment. Crisis prevention and intervention programs, including a local residential crisis unit would actually help the mentally ill stay out of jail and save the county money. Finally, we desprately need better mental health services in the jail. Not better COs and facilities.

    Nancy Sutherland
    Mental Health Bosrd a Member

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