- Hot Week
- Nino Signs
- Cross Planted
- Bleecker Update
- Fair Entries
- Divide FB
- Ukiah Acres
- Bramstedt's Experience
- Living Different
- Banned Books
- Climate Optimism
- Outage Survey
- U2 Magnet
- Yesterday's Catch
- Seed Bombs
- Museum Sale
- Global Wine
- Radio Documents
- Power Grab
- Jim Fest
- Packed Out
- COP 21
YEAH, IT WAS HOT TODAY, 101.4 in Boonville at 2pm Tuesday afternoon. The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for NorCal. Temperatures were forecast to be as much as 20 degrees above seasonal averages throughout the week with inland areas the hottest. Even San Francisco, which is usually spared when oven-like heat sets in around the region, was forecast to hit 96 degrees Tuesday and will stay in the 90s for Wednesday, forecasters said. “It’s going to be very, very warm and it will remain so for most of the work week,” said Bob Benjamin, a forecaster with the weather service. The heat is expected to peak Tuesday or Wednesday, but hot temperatures will stretch into the weekend as high pressure builds over California and suppresses the marine layer, according to the weather service. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued a spare the air alert amid the heat due to possible unhealthy ozone levels. Officials are advising people to walk, bike, carpool or take public transportation. “Motor vehicle exhaust is the number-one source of smog-forming pollution,” said Jack Broadbent, an air district spokesman. Tuesday’s heat, though, is not expected to threaten any records. Back in 1904 on this date, during a year of “extremely formidable records,” San Francisco hit 101 degrees and Livermore got to 110.
10 SIGNS THAT EL NIÑO MAY BE COMING
COUPLA months ago we noted that the wooden cross in front of Boonville's Assembly of God church was a strikingly beautiful cross, and probably much like the one Jesus was pilloried on, but to have it anchored in a plastic container was maybe not sacrilegious but the total aesthetic certainly lacked gravitas. Presto magico! The church has since placed the cross in a much more fitting setting, and good on them for doing it.
BLEECKER’S WALL OF SHAME
This is an update of what has happened since the article was so generously published by you.
(AVA, June 24, 2015 — https://www.theava.com/archives/44684)
This whole experience has been a real education for me. It was personally very upsetting to me that Bleecker, after being sentenced to 50 hours of community service and prevented from doing contracting work, made the Senior Center one of his first stops, after sentencing. He tried to get work thru the Center; however, I had just talked with Priscilla, an advocate for seniors at the Senior Center, and they turned him down. Tell me, is this really the way it is suppose to work? Anyway, here goes. I am not expecting you to print this; I am using this as way to vent against what is happening here.
I call this: Justice: Mendocino Style; Bleecker's Cabin — Wall Of Shame
When the normal channels of justice do not function, the question is "what other resources are there to pursue justice; and what community resources are out there to work with to be sure the same type of criminal act does not keep reoccurring, particularly by the same criminal?
The case, as previously reported, concerns Brandon Scott Bleecker, who fraudulently took $150,000 from two Willits senior women, claiming to be a licensed contractor. The case was referred to the Mendocino County DA's office by the California State Contractors Licensing Board for criminal prosecution. In a plea bargain, the Mendocino County DA's office sentenced Bleecker to fifty (50) hours of community service and 18 months of Summary Probation. While Bleecker was being prosecuted by the DA's office, Bleecker had three different jobs that he worked. After Bleecker was sentenced, he was marketing his services to the Willits Senior Center. The DA's office never provided an explanation of: 1) why most of the charges against Bleecker were dropped, 2) why Bleecker was never charged with "fraud," 3) why the victims of this crime were never made aware of the plea bargain (which is a requirement), and 4) how Bleecker could qualify for a Public Defender when he had just defrauded two people out of $150,000. Two letters were sent to the DA's office asking these questions; and no written response was ever provided.
WALL OF SHAME — SHAME ON YOU
- Mendocino County District Attorney's Office
I received a letter from the DA's office indicating they were filing charges against Bleecker; however, there were no charges for "fraud." I wrote a letter asking "why?" I never received a written response. After months of receiving dates for pretrial and trial, I received a letter from the DA’s office indicating Bleecker "…pleaded guilty to two counts of excessive down payments”; and he received 50 hours of community service. This punishment was for “fraud” involving $150,000! Apparently in this county a criminal can decide "what" he can plead guilty to, despite the charges that are filed against him. What a deal! But not justice for all, particularly for the victims or the ones to be.
- Anderson Valley Advertiser
A beacon of hope! The story was written and placed on the front page of the newspaper, along with a picture of Bleecker. At least some of the public are made aware there is a financial predator in the community, who is not being stopped by the law. I decided to use that newspaper article to create some community awareness so that Bleecker could not continue to ply his illegal trade — certainly 50 hours of community service was not going to stop Bleecker. In fact, I would think it would encourage him. After all, 50 hours of community service for $150,000 is $3,000/hr. Who wouldn't be encouraged?
- Willits Weekly, Willits News, Ukiah Daily Journal. Santa Rosa Press Democrat
None of these papers were interested in writing about this. They indicated that protecting the public against crime was not part of their mission! Does the public know this? So now the papers are a source of "feel good" social media?
- Tom Woodhouse, County Supervisor
Tom indicated he had read the article and he knew both Bleecker and his partner Steve Hoehn. He indicated he would see what he could do. I never heard from him again. Public servant gone deaf?
- Holly Madrigal, Willits City Council
Sent her a copy of the article. She referred me to Sheriff, Tom Allman, and gave me his direct line.
- Tom Allman, Sheriff
I called Sheriff Allman twice and was told he was busy. The third call I explained the case. He said it was too late; the case was already in the DA's Office. When I said I had made two previous calls to him before the case went to the DA's office, he said he would check that out and would call me the following Monday. I never heard from him. You don't have to handle many cases when everything falls in the category of "too early, too late or too busy to care."
- Chamber of Commerce, Lynn Kennelly
I gave a copy of the article to Lynn and asked whether she would have the time to read and give me any suggestion on what I could do. She indicated she would. I followed up several times and she had not read the article and never called me back.
- Priscilla, Community Advocate at the Senior Center (I never got a business card from her, so her title may be incorrect)
I met with Priscilla and she felt there were things we could do. She suggested I call Angelica, at Legal Aid and "7 on Your side." She said she had some contracts she would make. I have followed up with her weekly but she has not been able to talk with her contacts. It's been two months.
- Angelica, Legal Aid
She said Legal Aid does not get involved in cases like this.
- 7 on Your Side
I e-mailed a copy of the article and asked whether they were interested. I never heard from them.
- Community member
Suggested I get in touch with 1) CA Bar Association, 2) Dept of Consumer Affairs, Senior Citizen Affairs and 3) Kamal Harris, State’s Attorney General.
- California Bar Association
Although a DA is a member of the Bar Association, the Association does not handle improprieties of the DA’s office. They could not tell me who does! Can you believe they don't even know their own system?
- Dept of Consumer Affairs, Senior Citizen Affairs
There is no such department.
- Kamala Harris, California State’s Attorney General
A letter was sent with a copy of the article. I received a phone call saying they do not get involved in decisions made by the DA's Office. They have no power over them. Each DA can decide which cases they will take and what decision to make. According to her no one in the state is charged with overseeing the decisions of any DA's office! When I asked about not getting responses to my two letters to the Mendo DA's office, the woman on the phone indicated she would call the Mendo DA and ask them to respond! I never heard from her again and I never received anything from the Mendo DA's office. (The obvious question here is why the Mendocino County DA's office would respond to the States Attorney General's request if they have no power over them)
- Community member
Suggested I should call several ministers. They belong to an informal council that might want to be aware of a person taking advantage of seniors in the community. After all, each of their parishes have some seniors.
- Ministers in Willits (3)
I called three ministers and none of them returned my phone call.
I have to believe that Brandon Scott Bleecker found the perfect community for his crimes and a permanent place to continue his business. At $150,000 a year, if he does not expand his business, he will be a millionaire in 6-7 years, There is no overhead, no local, state or federal taxes, no business license. No organization to restrict his operations. It can't get much better than that!
REMINDER: MENDOCINO COUNTY FAIR ENTRIES need to be submitted this week — (Wednesday, Sep 9, or Thursday, Sep 10).
TURNER FORCES RALLY TO MAKE DAVE PERMANENT
(Do Hilary, Katie, Scott, and Chriss have last names?)
Out of No Recall
Go Fort Bragg's next campaign and an urgent call to action...
Hello No Recall Supporters,
You are receiving this email because of your participation in the campaign to oppose the frivolous and unjustified recall attempts of Mayor Dave Turner that took place in June. Thank you again for all your hard work in defeating that attack! Unfortunately, our work is not done. Our goal has been to morph the No Recall campaign into an ongoing organization called Go Fort Bragg geared at promoting progressive values and civic engagement in Fort Bragg with a focus on engaging younger demographics. But the so-called "CCFB" is still on the warpath, so our first campaign as Go Fort Bragg is fighting their measure to ban social services in the Central Business District. This measure is the most recent iteration of their crusade against the Hospitality Center's Old Coast Hotel project, and has serious implications for Fort Bragg's social service organizations. We hope you will continue your support of us as Go Fort Bragg and help us defeat this initiative. After the failed injunction, the failed lawsuit, the failed recall attempts, and even one failed petition for this measure, the "CCFB" has begun to again circulate a petition for this measure, while Councilmember Lindy Peters has requested that the City Council discuss voting to put this measure directly on the ballot. How long will the "CCFB" continue to waste the time and energy of our city staff and elected officials? How long are we willing to let them slander our city, degrade our citizens, and polarize our community in the pursuit of this vendetta? It is time to put this to rest and move on. It is time to stop scapegoating our most vulnerable citizens and get back to work improving our community.
Urgent Call to Action!
Unfortunately, we need to get on this right away. The measure is on the City Council agenda for Monday, September 14th! We really need a large turnout for this meeting. Please put this on your calendars. We must be present for this meeting to stand as witnesses to the fear and bigotry driving this measure and to speak out against it. You were part of the great group who came together to shut down the recall. The recall was wrong and so is this. We need to find a different way to deal with the problems our city faces. We hope you will join us now in shutting down this discriminatory measure. On Monday, September 14th, we will meet at Perfect Circle Taijiquan (330 N. Franklin St.) at 5:30 pm to get oriented and walk to Town Hall together.We will have buttons, suggested talking points, and speaker cards for the meeting. Please consider saying something. It is hard to get up in front of everyone and speak your mind, but it is very powerful.
Please check out our resources!
On the left sidebar above are links to resources about this measure. Please take some time to familiarize yourself with them. If you are in any way undecided about this measure please talk to us. You can contact Go Fort Bragg at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach us on facebook at www.facebook.com/gofortbragg.
Hilary, Katie, Scott, and Chriss
Go Fort Bragg Steering Committee
* * *
FORT BRAGG'S MAYOR TURNER is one of these semi-liberal characters prevalent in Mendocino County who talk a lot about community as he wields its platitudinous sub-sets — divisiveness, negativity, and so on — while he simultaneously commits the city to controversial projects, and does it in a done deal manner bound to make people angry.
SO NOW we have this Us vs. Them project that only deepens the rift between the Turner group and the rest of Fort Bragg. And the people behind it? They don't give us their last names, as if we're all so familiar with their eminence they don't really have to identify themselves.
SCOTT MENZIES maintains the tai chi studio on Franklin Street. He was opposed to the Old Coast Hospital deal until he was hired by the Hospitality House-Ortner Management Group to teach tai chi to their clients. 'Katie' is the mayor's daughter, and 'Hilary' owns Understuff and attends the same church as Turner.
IF TURNER wants to be mayor of the whole town, he ought to discourage this kind of thing.
UKIAH is setting aside a few acres in the area south of Brush Street near the Buddy Eller Center where homeless shelters can be erected sans use permits. No word on whether or not one or more will be erected, and the city still doesn't have specific plans for a winter homeless shelter.
ONE MAN'S EXPERIENCE
by Keith Bramstedt
The topic of mental health treatment is often discussed in the AVA and I thought you might be interested in my first person account of over 25 years of mental health treatment. Let me know if you want me to edit anything.
My first experience as a mental health client was at age 24 when I moved into a residential treatment house in Davis for mental health clients. I had dropped out of UC Davis at age 23 and had been treated for depression since age 21. I didn't know it at the time but I had grown up in an alcoholic/dysfunctional family and inherited depression from that environment.
I lived in the treatment house for a year. There were six beds and while I was there maybe 12-15 clients lived there. The staff was composed mostly of undergraduate psychology students at UC Davis led by a 30 year old program director. Most of the clients had been in the mental health system for years and were one step away from living on their own. During my year there I got on SSI. Overall, my experience there was so-so. When I moved in I perhaps had a naive notion that I could be "cured" there, but after a year there was little change in my depression.
During that year I applied to the California Department of Rehabilitation for help in seeking employment. DR helps people with disabilities. I was referred to a mental health client job program in Davis working on a gardening crew for minimum wage. It didn't interest me at all and I lasted maybe four months.
After I moved out of the treatment house I started going to Adult Children of Alcoholics 12-Step meetings where I learned I'd grown up in a dysfunctional family with an alcoholic father. This was crucial information because before this I had basically assumed that I was solely responsible for my depression and was inherently "defective". Learning the truth that my depression was the result of growing up in a dysfunctional family allowed me to give myself at least enough of a break that prevented most likely an eventual suicide attempt, because if I'd continued under the lie that my depression was "all my fault", surely I would have preferred being dead.
Looking back it's interesting and disturbing that weekly therapy with a psychiatrist and later a psychologist for over three years before ACA gave me no insight into the truth of being a victim of a dysfunctional family, and certainly being a mental health client would never expose me to that truth because mental health clients are not encouraged to question why they are "sick" but merely to see themselves as identified patients both on a family and societal level.
I left Davis at age 26 for Marin County to live with my parents which predictably did not work out well. After nine months I struck my mother and was hauled off on a 5150 for a two week stay on a psychiatric unit. After staying in a homeless shelter for two weeks I stayed in a "hotel" for mental health clients in downtown San Rafael and then moved into a "training" house for an assisted living program for mental health clients. That lasted about two months as I couldn't stand a housemate who was both schizophrenic and an alcoholic and who was a man in his late 20's who had the mentality of a six year old.
I should say that most mental health clients are diagnosed with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or bipolar disorder. I think in all my years of being a mental health client I only met one other person with a depression diagnosis. A large percentage of clients also have a substance abuse issue.
I eventually got established living in an apartment living off my parents and SSI. My next mental health client experience was attending a mental health day treatment program in San Anselmo where the clients would go for several hours a day attending groups and classes. That lasted maybe two months before I had a problem with the psychiatrist who ran a group therapy there who was basically the top dog of the staff of the program. I basically thought he was disrespectful toward me and the counselor assigned to me as I remember said I was a "disruption". Basically she took the psychiatrist's side which was not surprising since the counselor with her career aspirations didn't want to challenge the top dog psychiatrist on my behalf.
In my early 30's I went back to the day treatment program. I told the new staff that I'd had a problem with the psychiatrist (who was still there) when I was there before. They said I could skip his group if I had a problem with him again. This time at the day treatment program it went pretty well with groups and classes like art therapy and drama therapy amongst clients who were part of the mental health system in Marin, most living in houses for clients run by the Buckelew program (a non-profit mental health agency in Marin). Most all of them were on SSI.
After graduating from the day treatment program, I started Buckelew's employment program for mental health clients, working a part time job during the Christmas season at a clothing store before working with a job "developer" to find a job in the community. Eventually with his help I got a job at a nursery as a laborer, working for a little over minimum wage. Other than having two female college student job coaches spending some time with me at the job site for the first two weeks, it was a normal job situation. I got along well with the two nursery managers, and the job went pretty well although as a nursery laborer at a hardware store/lumber yard/nursery where the nursery was third in importance in the overall business operation, I was clearly at the bottom of the employee hierarchy. After seven months working there, during the winter season when there wasn't as much to do in the nursery as the warm season, and also because I grew tired of the man who ran the company, I quit.
To get this job I'd gone back to the Department of Rehabilitation and had been assigned a counselor there who seemed to have barely disguised contempt for me because she was barely civil to me. During one appointment with me when she was entering my information into her computer, she looked at my college history (I went to three colleges before dropping out) and said "So you didn't accomplish anything in college, huh?"
At age 39 I again went back to the Department of Rehabilitation and was referred again to Buckelew Employment, this time to work on a janitorial crew composed of mental health clients. My other choices were some kind of office work and a landscaping crew. I hated the work and didn't like, or really I should say, didn't find interesting most all of the clients I worked with. I even worked with one man who didn't talk. On the rare occasion when he actually did want to express himself he would make Caveman-like noises.
After doing the janitorial crew for seven months I quit and was assigned another job "developer" with the task of finding me a job with minuscule work experience on my resume. One day he had a colleague of his playing the role of potential employer in a job interview with me. She asked me a question about previous bosses and I said that I'd had problems with two of my most recent bosses at which point the job "developer" stopped the mock interview and in what I can only describe as agitated anger said I couldn't admit to an interviewer that I'd had a problem with bosses. He didn't tell me to lie but he clearly didn't want me to tell the truth. On an emotional level I interpreted his reaction as "You're a lowly mental health client looking for entry level work. You have to portray yourself as docile", or "You don't have the right to have a problem with bosses."
I felt and still feel that it is natural to have a problem with bosses; there's such a thing as corrupt authority figures in life. I wasn't going to lie about the matter so I dropped the job "developer" and again was finished with Buckelew Employment.
Years later in my late 40's I again went back to the Department of Rehabilitation and Buckelew Employment. This time there was the option of training as a barista in a cafe consisting of mental health client employees and run by a mental health professional. This was more appealing than the previous options.
Mental health clients are generally damaged people but the boss at this cafe didn't treat me any differently than normal employees. She pointed out everything I did wrong like touching my face or hair or telling me to wash my hands or disgustedly ordering me to force a smile on my face, but she never pointed out anything I did right. Just like my alcoholic father. This stint at the cafe lasted five months, and in the last two months I didn't show up for several shifts because I couldn't stand working for the boss. I failed to learn how to make all the coffee/espresso drinks, which I'd say was part my fault and part the boss' fault, so looking for a barista job in the community was not possible. Again I got a job "developer" and we worked on a resume and started looking for entry level jobs in the community and began practicing interviews. I was quite unenthusiastic about the menial, minimum wage jobs I was looking for, and during one practice interview I asked the job "developer": "So, how long do I have to fake being enthusiastic? Just for the interview or for the first day on the job or through the first week? Because I can't fake it indefinitely." I told Buckelew Employment I was interested in going back to college and discontinued my "case."
I think there's an underlying black-and-white belief in mental health employment agencies that is espoused that any employment is better than no employment. The reality for me is that menial, minimum wage jobs are not going to do anything positive for my self-esteem or hold my interest. That reality along with my minimal desire to finish college (a whole other loaded issue for me originating with my socially elitist father and social class of my upbringing) puts me in a pickle.
I'm currently doing volunteer work, not so much as a prelude to employment but simply as something constructive and hopefully meaningful to do to break my longstanding pattern of social isolation and disengagement from society. The thought of returning yet again to the Department of Rehabilitation and Buckelew Employment is repugnant and also reminds me of the definition of insanity I've heard many times in 12-Step groups: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. This avenue hasn't worked for me four times previously, so why would it be any different a fifth time?
My overall experience of being a mental health client in employment, residential, and treatment programs has had little impact on making me a productive member of society. This is because it continues to do on a societal level what happened in my family: make me an identified patient. This merely creates large amounts of anger and resentment in me. For instance, most people go to work and they're merely an employee. But as a mental health client in an employment program one goes to work as an employee AND a mental health client. This just adds to the sense of being "defective" I learned in my dysfunctional family.
My opinion is that the vast majority of mental health clients and mentally ill people were abused physically, sexually, or emotionally in childhood. It seems most of them aren't aware of this. Mental health clients provide job and career opportunities for mental health professionals of all kinds, not to mention psychiatrists, as well as massive profits for pharmaceutical companies. Psychiatric medication is a whole other loaded issue I chose not to cover in this article.
(Mr. Bramstedt is 50 and lives in San Anselmo.)
I REALIZE that you’ve heard this before. “Create a sustainable lifestyle” has been a mantra of environmental organizations for decades, environmental groups that rely mainly on the middle-class for their support. Still, if we manage to survive this century as a species, it won’t be because we developed some new clean energy source, it will be because we learned to live differently.
Do you remember that part of our Humboldt County heritage? You’ve seen the experimental houses, the strawbale, cobb, ferro-cement, and wattle-and-daub buildings, the yurts, tepees, wikiups, and benders, the domes, tree-houses, house-trees, and the thousands of funky, idiosyncratic little wooden dwellings that grace our Humboldt County hillsides. Those houses exist because a lot of people came to Humboldt County to experiment with different ways of living, not to become middle-class yuppies by growing dope.
We’ve seen how these experiments pay off economically. The Solar Living Center in Hopland, and the Schatz Energy Lab in Arcata come to mind immediately as examples of how a modest cultural experiment can catalyze change and create real economic opportunities.
We have a long history of experimental, owner-built housing in Humboldt County. We need housing now more than ever, and we need housing that works for people, rather than vice-versa. We need to learn to live differently, and few things reflect the way we live more than the homes we live in.
— James Hardin
BANNED BOOKS WEEK (September 26th - October 3rd)
September 26th - 3-8 pm: Visit our booth @ Youth Action Party (YAP) September 30th - 2-4 pm: Speak Your Stigma - special craft for teens October 3rd - 5-7 pm: Banned Books Read Out. Read a Banned Book
Most children in Ukiah are starting a new academic year. Teachers are sending out their lists of required readings, and parents are beginning to gather books. In some school districts, classics like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Catcher in the Rye, and To Kill a Mockingbird, may not be included in curriculum or available in the school library due to challenges made by parents or administrators.
Since 1990, the American Library Association's (ALA) Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) has recorded more than 10,000 book challenges. A challenge is a formal, written complaint requesting a book be removed from library shelves or school curriculum. About three out of four of all challenges are to materials in schools or school libraries, and one in four are to materials in public libraries. OIF estimates that less than one-quarter of challenges are reported and recorded.
It is thanks to the commitment of librarians, teachers, parents, and students that most challenges are unsuccessful and reading materials like I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Slaughterhouse Five, the Harry Potter series, and Phyllis Reynolds Naylor's Alice series, remain available.
Young Adult books will be the focus of Banned Books Week this year. In recent years, the majority of the most frequently challenged books in libraries have been Young Adult (YA) titles. Six YA titles were on the list of the Top Ten Most Challenged Books of 2014, according to the American Library Association.
"These are the books that speak most immediately to young people, dealing with many of the difficult issues that arise in their own lives, or in the lives of their friends. These are the books that give young readers the ability to safely explore the sometimes scary real world. This Banned Books Week is a call to action, to remind everyone that young people need to be allowed the freedom to read widely, to read books that are relevant for them, and to be able to make their own reading choices.”
Attempted bans on books of all kinds also frequently occur under the guise of protecting younger audiences. However, challenges are not simply an expression of a point of view; on the contrary, they are an attempt to remove materials from public use, thereby restricting the access of others. Even if the motivation to ban or challenge a book is well intentioned, the outcome is detrimental. Censorship denies our freedom as individuals to choose and think for ourselves.
In support of the right to choose books freely for ourselves, the ALA and Ukiah Library are celebrating Banned Books Week, September 27th – October 3rd, an annual reminder of our right to access books without censorship. This year's observance commemorates the most basic freedom in a democratic society -”the freedom to read freely”, and encourages us not to take this freedom for granted.
Since its inception in 1982, Banned Books Week has reminded us that while not every book is intended for every reader, each of us has the right to decide for ourselves what to read, listen to or view. Ukiah Library and thousands of libraries and bookstores across the country will celebrate the freedom to read by showcasing books that have been banned or threatened.
American libraries are the cornerstones of our democracy. Libraries are for everyone, everywhere. Because libraries provide free access to a world of information, they bring opportunity to all people. Now, more than ever, celebrate the freedom to read @ your library! Read an old favorite or a new banned book this week.
BE POOR FOR FIVE DAYS
We have an interesting news reporting opportunity for you! This fall, we invite you and your staff to join over 50 members of our community as they engage in an unusual and powerful exercise designed to challenge perceptions about food and poverty. We are hosting our second annual CalFresh Challenge – a five-day experience during which participants commit to eating on only $5 per day, which is the average benefit amount for a CalFresh/Food Stamp recipient in California.
As a member of the local media, we invite you to participate in the Challenge along with us - highlighting the experience of participants and maybe even signing up yourself! We will be happy to provide you with local contacts that you can interview and likely photograph for the story. The power of this exercise in creating community conversation and engagement is entirely dependent on our local media organizations. We need you!
The CalFresh Challenge lasts for five days (October 19th through 23rd). During that time, participants choose meals based on a budget of $5 per day – the average CalFresh benefit. They will need to make food shopping choices on a limited budget, and will experience how difficult it is to avoid hunger, afford nutritious foods, and stay healthy with very few resources. For all participants, this will be a week of planning meals and making every dollar stretch.
In Mendocino County, over 12,000 low-income individuals are currently enrolled in the CalFresh/Food Stamp Program. Although they may not garner the most public attention, we know that most CalFresh recipients in Mendocino County are hard-working and engaged families who are struggling to make ends meet and/or who have fallen on hard times. Over 60% of CalFresh beneficiaries are children under the age of 18. The majority of people enrolled in CalFresh are members of working households, and a significant percentage of our CalFresh families include at least one senior. As you well know from your own news reporting, poverty is a pervasive and deeply influential challenge within our local communities.
Please look for more information and register today at our online registration site at www.healthymendocino.org. If you register, we will be able to keep you informed and involved throughout the Challenge. Please register today!
For more information, please feel free to contact me directly at email@example.com or by phone at 707-462-1950.
Tarney Sheldon, NCO
Nutrition Basics Program Manager
CLIMATE CHANGE OPTIMISM
Jonathan Chait in New York magazine claims there's reason for optimism on climate change (The sunniest climate-change story you've ever read):
Guess what everyone’s been missing in the middle of their keening for the dear, soon-to-be-departed Earth? There is good news. And not just incremental good news but transformational good news, developments that have the potential to mitigate the worst effects of climate change to a degree many had feared impossible. Those who have consigned the world to its doom should reconsider. The technological and political underpinnings are at last in place to actually consummate the first global pact to limit greenhouse-gas emissions. The world is suddenly responding to the climate emergency with — by the standards of its previous behavior — astonishing speed. The game is not over. And the good guys are starting to win.
Survey regarding Sept. 3rd 2015 Communications Outage
On Sept 3, Mendocino and Humboldt Counties were affected by yet another communications outage which impacted 911 services. Mendocino County, in coordination with the Broadband Alliance of Mendocino County, is asking everyone, including all residents, businesses, and organizations, to please take an online survey to document the impacts from this outage.
The data collected from these surveys provide critical documentation in our efforts to require reliable and redundant network design. We can't stop vandalism or acts of nature, but a single point of failure should not result in a 2-county communications failure. Last year's Outage Report, compiled with data from that survey, was submitted to the FCC and California Public Utilities Commission. It also resulted in an Alliance presentation at a Washington DC Congressional Staff briefing on the importance of Network Resiliency. Our report was used as evidence by CPUC Commissioners Florio and Sandoval in their July 2015 "Alternate Proposed Decision" for the need for an infrastructure review and "a need to maintain some redundancy in communications facilities in case of a network failure".
We are making progress, but we need to keep the pressure on. Please take a few minutes to help us document how this outage affected your family, organization, or business.
You can access the survey at <http://www.surveymonkey.com/r/another-outage>
You can visit our website at: www.MendocinoBroadband.org
FRED GARDNER WRITES:
Is your hate pure?
Alexander Cockburn used to call me up once in a while and ask that question before reading a press clip...
The lead story in the NYTimes Sunday Business section Sept. 6 is strongly supportive of Joe Lacob and Peter Gruber's plan to build a 12-acre "entertainment complex" anchored by a stadium for your Golden State Warriors (while pretending to be fair and balanced). According to the obsequious reporter, one Matt Richtel, "Mr. Lacob made his money as a venture capitalist with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, all the while chasing his childhood dream of owning a sports franchise."
I thought Joe Lacob's dream was to be a doctor, because of the following comments his son Kirk made to Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News:
"'Last week we were at my brother’s graduation in St. Louis. My dad likes to tell the story, he applied to a lot of medical schools and he didn’t get into any. He got wait-listed at one, and that was Washington University in St. Louis -- that’s where my brother just graduated undergrad. My dad’s sitting there at the graduation, he looks at me, he goes, “Do you think they know they messed up?’
"I’m like, 'What are you talking about?’"
"He goes, 'Do you think they know they messed up that I didn’t get in? What if I had cured cancer?’ This is the way he thinks; he’s sitting there, 'They should know they screwed up; I should’ve gotten in here.’"
You can look it up:
Lacob and Gruber bought the 12 acres from Marc Benioff, described in the Times as "the founder of Salesforce, a software giant and San Francisco mainstay."
Tadich's is a San Francisco mainstay. The Cliff House is a San Francisco mainstay... Richtel quotes Benioff: "If I want to see U2, I have to go to San Jose," he lamented, adding, "without great sports franchises, we can't be a great city."
Quick — what sports franchise is Paris known for? Amsterdam? Copenhagen? Oslo? Correct answers to four out of four get you free tickets to see U2.
It's hot, man.
FRESCO BY R. RHOADES, ET AL
Mendocino College, Fort Bragg Campus
(Photo by Susie de Castro)
CATCH OF THE DAY, Sep 8, 2015
TIMOTHY DAWE, Mendocino. Drunk in public, probation revocation.
MIGUEL LOPEZ, Ukiah. Vehicle theft.
WILLIAM ROBERTS III, Talmage. DUI.
ZACHARIA ROZEK, Fort Bragg. Battery.
ALI TEIMOURY, Point Arena. Failure to appear, probation revocation.
THOMAS WILLIAMS, Redwood Valley. Under influence of controlled substance.
MONARCH BUTTERFLY HABITAT RESCUE WITH SEED BOMBS
On Friday, September 18, from 3:00 – 4:30 PM, come and enjoy this hands-on event. Make Seed Bombs filled with Monarch Butterfly habitat restoration seeds. You will take these clay capsules home to your gardens and neighborhoods to create beautiful, beneficial habitats for butterflies. This is a fun event for all ages and is sponsored by the Friends of the Ukiah Library.
GRACE HUDSON MUSEUM "ESTATE SALE" AND ARTS COMMUNITY WHITE ELEPHANT SALE
by Roberta Werdinger
Over the next three weekends in September, the Grace Hudson Museum teams up with the Mendocino County Arts Association and other artists and arts organizations to host a wonderfully big sale. On offer will be art, books, jewelry, collectibles and more, from items especially donated for Museum support. There will also be sale items from the Museum's Gift Shop, and unique creations galore from the county's eclectic and talented assortment of artists. New items will appear daily. This sale will be a fundraiser for the Museum to construct new movable display walls for future exhibitions. In between browsing, visitors can check out Phase I of the Museum's park remodel project that will create a new entrance to the gardens and will renovate the parking lot. The sale will take place Saturday, Sept. 12 through Sunday, Sept. 13; Wednesday, Sept. 16 through Sunday, Sept. 20; and Wednesday, Sept. 23 through Sunday, Sept. 27. The sale will happen during Museum hours: Wednesday through Saturday from 10 am to 4:30 pm and Sunday from noon to 4:30 pm. The Grace Hudson Museum is at 431 S. Main St. in Ukiah. For more information please call 467-2836 or go to www.gracehudsonmuseum.org
COMMON GROUND FOR THE COMMON GOOD
From the Sept. 6, 2015, Sonoma County Gazette: “…six of the seven producers that own 82% of U.S. wine are global corporations.” Another voice for truly sustainable viticulture in Sonoma --
(Submitted by Betsy Cawn)
To the Board of Directors and General Manager of Mendocino County Public Broadcasting (KZYX&Z)
We have received confirmation that a new General Manager has been hired for the radio station, effective September 8. According to our previous agreement, this triggers a new date for the inspection of documents as required by our Demand for Inspection of June 9. You had requested four weeks from the date of the hiring, and we accommodated your request. The new date for inspection is thus Tuesday, October 6. I have copied the Demand and subsequent correspondence below for your convenience.
Considering the work done by our new Treasurer, Clay Eubank, in organizing the financial records, we believe that four weeks provides adequate time. Please note that we do not agree with any of the limitations to inspection that were suggested by Stuart Campbell, then chair of the board and now General Manager, in his response of June 23. If you wish to stop or limit the inspection, you will need to obtain an order from the Superior Court.
Thank you very much for accommodating the inspection. Between now and then, please make sure that all records are preserved and that none are destroyed, removed, or otherwise made inaccessible.
Norm de Vall
To the Editor:
Breaking news. Stuart Campbell, President of the KZYX Board of Directors, has succeeded in an unprecedented power grab -- it was announced at last night Board meeting that Campbell is KZYX's new Executive Director and General Manager.
Is Campbell really an improvement over the arrogant fustiness of outgoing KZYX Executive Director and General Manager, John Coate?
I just researched Stuart Campbell's ratings as an instructor at Santa Rosa Junior College. His ratings suck, and he hated teaching -- all he ever talked about was retiring. Now, Campbell is KZYX's new executive director and general manager.
So, it looks like Stuart Campbell got the job he's always wanted in last night's unprecedented power grab.
Campbell will find that the KZYX job is easy money. The job pays $30 an hour. There's no formal job description except to pontificate at will. There's no formal oversight except to get a complacent board to rubber stamp everything and anything. And no time logs or work logs to fill out.
Campbell will also get to keep his own hours, work from home, and come and go at will. Unpaid volunteers at the station -- its 70-80 programmers who host public affairs and music shows -- will continue to do all the work.
Worst of all, Campbell will get to purge his critics at will, and otherwise be a total control freak, much as Coate did. The KZYX Board of Directors abrogated its oversight responsibilities long ago.
Also, Campbell will get to rig elections, as Coate did. He will get to tailor the station's by-laws to serve his ends, as Coate did. And Campbell will get keep the station's 2,100 members as uninformed, unorganized, and powerless as much as possible, again like Coate.
Nothing has changed at KZYX since Coate except for the fact that we're doing a better job with local news.
KZYX still hasn't made the necessary investments in broadcast infrastructure. We have dead air, fuzz outs, and a irritating, scratchy signal. And we still don't have a studio in Ukiah.
Also, we still have unnecessary and way-too-expensive salaried staff who do not disclose their salaries, while at the same time refusing to submit to formal job descriptions, work logs, or job performance evaluations by the Board of Directors. Perhaps worst of all, the station's grossly overpaid and tyrannical Program Director, Mary Aigner, will continue to make all programming decisions, censor programmers, and purge her critics.
Back to Stuart Campbell.
Attached below is a link to student ratings of Professor Stuart Campbell (philosophy and ethics classes) over the years with Santa Rosa Junior College. Note that Campbell is not listed on the September 2015 roster as a faculty member, which means his move to hire himself as KZYX's Executive Director and General Manager has been in the works throughout the summer months. I, as a Board Director, was not informed of Campbell's lateral move to become the boss at KZYX , nor was I told about the changes in Officers of the Board of Director, both developments of which I was willfully excluded.
Campbell's overall professor rating is 2.6 out of a 4.0 grading system.
Here is a sampling of those ratings from the students who thought enough about their experiences with Professor Campbell to post. Comment No. 1. "I like him as a human but the class is absolutely painful to sit through and I feel like he has made it so much worse than it needs to be. I am not learning a darn thing."
Comment No. 2. "The first month of class he would lecture us, this was the most bored I had ever been, he would veer off and talk about retirement a lot. No textbook or quizzes. The entire second half is ALL group project work with a research paper at the end. I have to say, at first I loathed this class."
Comment No. 3. "Terrible teacher and class. Tests on material not discussed in class or in the book. Very boring class and very useless material. I would rather deploy to Iraq than take this prof again."
Comment No. 4. "Avoid at all cost! Classes are awkward and unclear. He seems to encourage class discussion that goes wildly off topic. Again...AVOID!!!"
KZYX Board of Directors (2013-201), Board Treasurer (2014)
ALL THE BEST! FROM JIM & JIM!
Hello, Jim Wood BBQ — As a lifelong middle-of-the-road extremist I’d like to invite both you and your spouses, Trophy and Ling, to be my guests at Jim Wood’s event on Sunday (9/13) in Healdsburg. I’m happy to pick you up in Ukiah and Marin County, even though it might mean prying you from your peacock feathers, and take you back. Or in Bruce’s case maybe to Anderson Valley. Let me know if you’d care to join me and to meet Jim. The other one. It’s been a while since we talked and a few hours in a car together would/could be interesting for all of us. All the best. Jim Mastin 707.621.0021
THIS DAY IN HISTORY FROM THE KELLEY HOUSE MUSEUM
On this day in 1921 a truck that had been stuck in the woods, blocked by fallen trees, was brought out of the forest. In some locales the solution might have been to remove or cut through the trees, but not here in redwood country. James Bowman of Bowman’s Garage went out to Mettick Creek on the South Fork of Big River and disassembled Ed Rasmussen’s truck, which was then packed out in pieces by mules. Mules, oxen, and horses were all used for hauling in the woods. The picture shows a pack mule hauling a load of tanbark.
CRAIG'S GOING TO PARIS
I Just Sent this to COP 21 Administration in Paris, and I am seeking others to form an affinity group with me! What are we waiting for? If not us, who?? ;-) Seeking cooperation to be at COP 21 in the fullest sense... Warm spiritual greetings, Please know that I am presently in Washington D.C. in association with Beyond Extreme Energy, protesting at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, in opposition to irresponsible policies in regard to the issuing of fracking permits in the region. I am considering coming to Paris for COP 21, and request that you put me in touch with radical environmental groups in France. I will require a place to go to upon my arrival. Otherwise, I am travelling alone, do not know French, but do have sufficient money to take care of all of my needs. Please advise. Thank you very much, Craig Louis Stehr
Craig Louis Stehr