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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, Oct 7, 2015

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SUMMERS LANE RESERVOIR: The City of Fort Bragg is making a big mistake, counting on the planned Summers Lane Reservoir to solve our water problems. The reservoir will also draw from the same Noyo watershed, where we are currently violating recommendations from State Fish and Game regarding listed endangered species.
 Last year the city was warned by this agency that “Fort Bragg should NOT approve additional projects or developments with the potential to increase water demand.”
 Opting to ignore this and other warnings from the state, city gov approved a new Taco Bell, and a water guzzling new brewery.

POSSIBLE REPOST/LINK: To emphasize that Fish and Game Letter addresses the reservoir project as also highly problematic. Also shows a complete lack of compliance by our arrogant city government.

(Alice Chouteau, Fort Bragg)

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POLITICO REPORTED Tuesday it was Vice President Joe Biden himself who leaked his son’s dying wish for him to run for president to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd. Citing multiple sources, Politico alleges Biden planted the story in August and “effectively placed an ad in The New York Times, asking people to call.” The report claims Biden is constantly referencing Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers to aides, as well as the data that show him drawing more support away from her than Bernie Sanders. Sources also told Politico that when Biden privately met with Sen. Elizabeth Warren this summer, he hinted at a possible running-mate spot for 2016. Though Biden has said publicly that he remains undecided about a run, his sister, Valerie Biden Owens, and his wife, Jill, are hoping the answer is no, sources said.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Oct. 6, 2015

Conner, Diaz, Edwards
Conner, Diaz, Edwards

BENJAMIN CONNER, Point Arena. Retaking land after removal.

MICHAEL DIAZ, Potter Valley. Speed contest.

RICHARD EDWARDS, Ukiah. Possession of more than an ounce of pot, concentrated cannabis, paraphernalia; trespassing, probation revocation.

Israel, Jordan, Lanzit, Morales
Israel, Jordan, Lanzit, Morales

YESOD ISRAEL, Willits. Probation revocation.

DUSTIN JORDAN, Willits. Paraphernalia, community supervision violation, probation revocation.

NICHOLAS LANZIT, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

DAVID MORALES, Clearlake/Ukiah. Suspended license.

Nally, Neeley, Petitt
Nally, Neeley, Petitt

JEVON NALLY, Ukiah. Speed contest.

SHERRI NEELEY, Ukiah. Switchblade in vehicle, receiving stolen property, probation revocation. (Frequent Flyer)

PENNY PETITT, Ukiah. Paraphernalia, evasion.

Rodriquez, Teimoury, Tinsley
Rodriquez, Teimoury, Tinsley

PETER RODRIQUEZ, Redway. Possession of meth for sale, paraphernalia.

ALI TEIMOURY, Point Arena. Retaking land after removal, probation revocation.

JENNIFER TINSLEY, Lucerne. Illegally obtained access card, failure to appear, probation revocation.

Tuttle, Villalobos, Virgin, Wharton
Tuttle, Villalobos, Virgin, Wharton

ALESHIA TUTTLE, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

LUIS VILLALOBOS, Ukiah. Possession of meth for sale, under the influence of controlled substance.

BRANDON VIRGIN, Petaluma/Ukiah. Possession of, under influence of controlled substance, probation revocation.

GERI WHARTON, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

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TPP: A BAD DEAL for the Bottom 90 Percent of Americans

by Robert Reich

Today the United States and 11 other Pacific Rim nations agreed to the Trans-Pacific Partnership -- the largest and potentially most damaging regional trade accord in history, that would tie together 40 percent of the world’s economy. Fortunately, the battle isn't over. The TPP must still pass Congress. That's where you come in. Please call your senators and congressmen and voice your opposition to it.

The deal is slightly better than the first draft but it would still widen inequality. Global banks and corporations headquartered in the U.S. as well as their executives and biggest shareholders would be the big winners; most other Americans would lose. The deal would:

  1. Expand protections for the foreign property of big global corporations.
  2. Extend intellectual-property protections for big global pharmaceutical companies, although not as many extra years as Big Pharma had in the first draft.
  3. Create special tribunals that can force countries to pay global corporations damages for lost profits due to health, safety, environmental regulations. A code of conduct would govern lawyers selected for these panels but they’ll still be looking over their shoulders at the big corporations who they rely on for business. Thankfully, tobacco companies would be excluded.
  4. By encouraging foreign direct investment in all these ways,the deal will make it even easier for big American companies to outsource work abroad. (The administration says the U.S. will gain export jobs but that’s unlikely as long as American wages and the U.S. dollar remain so much higher than the wages and currencies of so many southeast Asian nations.)
  5. True, the worker standards in the TPP commit all parties to the International Labor Organization’s standards but almost all these nations are already committed to those standards. Problem is, they haven’t been enforced, and the TPP has no enforcement power beyond what’s already available in the International Labor Organization.

It’s a bad deal for the bottom 90 percent of Americans. Bernie Sanders is against it. Hopefully, Hillary Clinton will be as well. (And just because Donald Trump is also against it doesn’t make it right.)

What do you think?

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16th Annual

Big River Walk & Paddle For Cancer

Saturday, October 24, 2015

9:30 AM

Big River State Park, Mendocino

Participate in the Big River Walk & Paddle For Cancer and support the Cancer Resource Centers' mission to improve the quality of life for those in Mendocino County faced with cancer.

Register now!  - - Gather  pledges. Set up an easy crowdfunding donation page. - Put  together a team, participate with a friend, or come on your own. Join CRC as we walk along the scenic, Big River Haul Road trail and paddle on Big River. Participate in honor of a friend or family member who has faced cancer.The Big River Walk & Paddle for Cancer is a family-friendly event for all ages.

Saturday Oct 24, 2015 Starting @ 9:30 am @ BIG RIVER STATE PARK, Mendocino

Registration / Donation Adults $25Teens $10Free for Kids under 12

Visit the Cancer Resource Centers of Mendocino County's website

to register online and print pledge forms, or for more information about the Big River Walk & Paddle, please call CRC's Coast office: 707-937-3833.

The Cancer Resource Centers of Mendocino County is a grassroots organization with a mission to improve the quality of life for those in Mendocino County faced with cancer. CRC is completely financed through donations and grants. Our funders  and donors make it possible for our services to be provided at no cost  from offices located in Mendocino and Ukiah. Giving to CRC helps us help others!

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by Ralph Nader

Next year, the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) will celebrate its 50th anniversary as one of the finest laws our Congress has ever passed. It is a vital investigative tool for exposing government and corporate wrongdoing.

The FOIA was championed by Congressman John E. Moss (D-CA), who strove to “guarantee the right of every citizen to know the facts of his Government.” Moss, with whom I worked closely as an outside citizen advocate, said that “without the fullest possible access to Government information, it is impossible to gain the knowledge necessary to discharge the responsibilities of citizenship.”

All fifty states have adopted FOIA statutes.

As the FOIA approaches its 50th year, it faces a disturbing backlash from scientists tied to the agrichemical company Monsanto and its allies. Here are some examples.

On March 9th, three former presidents of the American Association for the Advancement of Science – all with ties to Monsanto or the biotech industry – wrote in the pages of the Guardian to criticize the use of the state FOIA laws to investigate taxpayer-funded scientists who vocally defend Monsanto, the agrichemical industry, their pesticides, and genetically engineered food. They called the FOIAs an “organized attack on science.”

The super-secretive Monsanto has stated, regarding the FOIAs, that “agenda-driven groups often take individual documents or quotes out of context in an attempt to distort the facts, advance their agenda, and stop legitimate research.”

Advocates with the venerable Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) do worry that the FOIA can be abused to harass scientists for ideological reasons. This is true; for example, human-caused global warming deniers have abused the FOIA against climate scientists working at state universities like Michael Mann of Pennsylvania State University.

Among other suggestions, UCS recommends the following:

  • “Universities should clarify their policies and procedures with regard to open records requests, ensure that their employees understand these policies, and make sure they have considered how they will respond when overly broad requests are used to harass their researchers…..
  • Legislators should examine their open records laws and ensure that they include appropriate exemptions that will protect privacy and academic freedom without compromising accountability.
  • The National Academy of Sciences and other research organizations should provide guidance to legislators and universities on what should be disclosed and what should be protected….”

For more on the UCS positions see:

The proper response to abuses of the FOIA is not, however, to advocate blocking citizens or reporters from using the FOIA.

There are countless government and corporate scandals that have been revealed by the FOIA, but here are just two from this year.

In February, Justin Gillis and John Schwartz of the New York Times used documents obtained by the Greenpeace and the Climate Investigations Center through the FOIA to expose the corporate ties of the climate-change-denying scientist Wei-Hock “Willie” Soon, who received over $1.2 million in contributions from the fossil fuel industry over the last ten years.  Soon even called his scientific papers “deliverables” to his corporate donors.

Another area of risk to food and health was revealed by FOIA requests. There are legitimate concerns about the health and environmental perils of genetically engineered crops and food. And the concerns are mounting. For example, in March, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified the herbicide glyphosate – which is sprayed as Roundup on many genetically engineered crops – as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”

On August 20, in the New England Journal of Medicine, Philip J. Landrigan and Charles Benbrook wrote that “the argument that there is nothing new about genetic rearrangement misses the point that GM crops are now the agricultural products most heavily treated with herbicides and that two of these herbicides may pose risks of cancer.” Another study published on August 25 in the journal Environmental Health suggests that very low levels of exposure to Roundup “can result in liver and kidney damage” in rats, “with potential significant health implications for animal and human populations.”

US Right To Know, a nonprofit consumer group staffed by consumer advocates, is conducting an investigation of the food and agrichemical industries, including companies like Monsanto, and how they use front groups and taxpayer-funded professors at public universities to advance their claims that processed foods, artificial additives, and GMOs are safe, wholesome, and beyond reproach.

Based on documents that US Right to Know obtained through the FOIA, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Eric Lipton wrote a front page New York Times article about how Monsanto and the agrichemical industry use publically-funded scientists to lobby, and to promote its messages and products.  For example, Lipton reported on a $25,000 grant from Monsanto to University of Florida Professor Kevin Folta, who had repeatedly denied having ties to Monsanto: “‘This is a great 3rd-party approach to developing the advocacy that we’re looking to develop,’ Michael Lohuis, the director of crop biometrics at Monsanto, wrote last year in an email as the company considered giving Dr. Folta an unrestricted grant.”

One thing is clear; food safety, public health, the commercialization of public universities, corporate control of science, and the research produced by taxpayer-funded scientists to promote commercial products are all appropriate subjects for FOIA requests.

The use of the FOIA by citizens, journalists, and others to expose scandals is essential to ensure honest scientific inquiry and is critical to developing protective public health and environmental standards. Scientific research should not be contaminated by the inevitable biases and secrecy that come with corporate contracts at public universities.

The FOIA is a valuable tool to help citizens uncover corruption and wrongdoing, and to vindicate our right to know what our own governments are doing.

(Ralph Nader is a consumer advocate, lawyer and author of Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!)

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I’M NOT A SCIENTOLOGIST, but I Wish TV Shrinks Would Just Shut Up

by Clancy Sigal

“He would get mad if things weren’t his way.  But (his mother) always had him in control.”
— a neighbor about the Umpqua, Oregon assassin

I’m not a Scientologist but there are times when I wish all the TV shrinks would zip it up whenever a “mass casualty” incident happens like Roseburg, Oregon’s Umpqua community college massacre.  The therapeutic clichés keep pouring out of their ever-ready mouths, muddying the waters and piling up nonsense.

Here they come so easily spouted: “psychopath”, “sociopath”, “lack of empathy”, “abusive childhood”, “mental health disorder”, “schizophrenic”, “social and sexual reject”, “anxiety and depressive disorder”, “bipolar”, “dissociative disorder”, Donald Trump’s all-purpose “mental illness”, and my own favorite, “sick and twisted”.

Or we can relax with the brilliant diagnosis of forensic psychiatrist on TV Dr. Louis Schlesinger,  “People who commit mass murder are obviously not doing well.”  Thanks, doc.

The above pseudo-medical labels cover about half the U.S. population who at one time in our lives will deserve a psychiatric diagnosis.

The Archie Bunker in me, never far from the surface, says: the gunman in these school shootings is a frustrated punk who got his hands on a weapon.  That’s it.  Nothing fancy.  Chris Harper-Mercer, the Oregon shooter, strolls into a gun shop and slaps down his credit card and in no time, because he doesn’t have a rap sheet and probably it wouldn’t matter, at least 18 people get slammed with Glock or AR15 bullets, and nine die.  Easy as pie.

Once you’re in charge of a weapon reason flies out the window.  I became a different, swaggering person when I carried a military .45 on my hip.  After yet another school massacre the “why?” is almost irrelevant.  Elliott Rodger in Santa Barbara can’t find a date, Robert Flores in Arizona is depressed over flunking out, Seung-Hui Cho shoots 32 people at Virginia Tech because he doesn’t like “rich people”, Dylann Roof  at the Charlestown church massacre out of 100% pure race hatred, Fred Davis at San Diego State fears his professors will reject his graduate thesis, and so on.

Two years ago John Zawahri, “troubled by mental health challenges”, kills five people with a self-made AR15 in and around the Santa Monica school my son attended; Zawahri leaves a long letter nobody can interpret.  They love writing suicide notes that would get them an ‘F’ in class.

Looking for a pattern?  Many multiple school assassins are from “broken” homes, which is easy to do since half of all American marriages end up in divorce, and about a quarter of families are single parent like Laurel Mercer’s.

As night follows day the next cliché rolls out: “gun control”.  A platitude without teeth.  How about making high capacity mags illegal, prison time without parole for gunshop owners, bullet rationing, gun shows banned, a few little things like that?

If Jonathan Swift, the 18th century clergyman-satirist, was alive today he’d also insist on “parent control”, to burn enablers at the stake.  Or at least make them suffer the torment of yet another pseudo-psychological diagnosis.  Who was minding the store when Chris Mercer assembled 14 weapons, including a $700 rifle, plus body armor and high capacity magazines?  Not Laurel Mercer whose Facebook page supports “open carry” laws.   “And when the mood strikes…I sling an AR, Tek-9 or AK over my shoulder, or holster a Glock 21 (not 22), or one of my other handguns, like the Sig Sauer P226, and walk out the door. I find the shotguns are a little too cumbersome to open carry.”  Some mama.

And what about “media control”?  It’s a dead cert that some killings are copycat absorbed from over-the-top televised coverage.  (We know this is true from Mercer’s website.)  Unconstitutionally, why not limit reporting a major incident only to local media but censor to zero national coverage with its inflammatory images.  Whoops, there go the network ratings.

Best of all, the “Australian option”.  After a series of 1980s massacres, the federal government, led by Liberal (i.e. conservative) John Howard and backed by public opinion, cajoled each Australian state government to abide by the 1996 NATIONAL FIREARMS AGREEMENT that restricted almost all civilian guns, including imitations, as “prohibited weapons”.   Licensed guns may hold a maximum of 10 rounds only.  Air pistols were as hard to get as prohibited guns.  All semi-automatics and pump action shotguns were banned.  The laws were accompanied by a buy-back scheme which CUT THE RISK OF DYING BY GUNSHOT BY OVER 50%.   Introducing uniform gun laws, prime minister Howard said, “We do not want the American disease imported into Australia.”

Australia like us has its violent, gun-riddled “wild west” frontier history.   It’s definitely not a non violent nation.  Ever watched a riotous game of “Australian Rules Football”?  No player leaves the ground unless they’re bleeding to death.

Australians still kill one another.  But, mercifully, fewer.

P.S. Want to know exactly how American assassins get their weapons?  Slate’s Christine Cauterucci and Greta Weber did the legwork.

(Clancy Sigal is a screenwriter and novelist. His latest book is Hemingway Lives.)

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Since 2009, Albert Bruin has been a fixture on Santa Rosa's South A Street. Now his time is up.

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AT THE BALLPARK SATURDAY for the Giants vs. the Rockies in the penultimate game of the season, I looked around for my scalper-dude but didn't find him and had to buy an extortionately-priced ticket for the View section at the stadium box office.

UP IN VIEW you've got a great vertiginous view of the Bay in between pitches and the fans aren't as irritating as they tend to be in the more expensive seats closer to the field which, increasingly, are bought up in blocs by the new gizmo gentry now dominant in San Francisco. Everywhere people are staring at their handheld toys. The game to a lot of people seems to be just one more accoutrement, as in, "Here I am at AT&T, here I am eating a hot dog, here I am drinking a watery, six dollar lemonade."

THE INSTANT I found my seat my humiliation began. There was an extension of the guard rail right in front of my face. To see the pitch I had to duck my head under the bar. To see what happened when the hitter made contact with the ball I had to lift my head over the bar. The Giants had larceny-ed me. They should not be selling that seat. A midget would have trouble getting the bar out of his viewshed.


SO I MOVED over into an empty seat. The Giants had been eliminated from the playoffs, so I'd assumed a lot of the usual frontrunners wouldn't bother coming out for a game between also-rans. But a few minutes before game time, the park filled up, and I looked up to a Man-Boy scowling down at me.

(MAN-BOYS dress like children. They wear trousers cut off at the shins and jerseys with ballplayer's names on them and, at the ballpark, they carry baseball gloves. A lot of them have big gym muscles. This one carried a batting helmet heaped with nachos, the worst possible food in a whole arena of bad food. We're talking serious social retardation here, but there are armies of them out there.)

"YOU'RE in my fuckin' seat," Man-Boy said. My instinct was to come up swinging but, ahem, at my age swinging is no longer a viable option. "Ask me nicely and I will," I said. "It's my fuckin' seat," Man-Boy repeated, then added, "Fuckin' move, man. Please." Startled that he'd capitulated, but aware his capitulation was pegged to my obvious decrepitude, I moved. "Sorry," I said. "No problem," he said. Beating up an old guy would certainly have been a problem for him and fortunately for me Man-Boy had decided against it. Old people can say and do almost anything with impunity. I play the Old Guy card a lot.

THERE WERE EMPTY SEATS nearby but I'd been bad-vibed outta the section where I belonged, where I'd paid forty-five goddam dollars for a tiny space, wedged in among the nacho eaters with not even space for my arthritic elbow. I got up and moved down the first base line and sat down in a railing seat where, in a few minutes, a young couple with two little kids appeared. "I'm sorry," the young man said, "but that's our seat." I was on the move again only to be politely removed a third seat.

I BEGAN to feel sorry for myself. "Goddamit! I'm a senior citizen! A property owner! An employer! A veteran! A voter! I saw Dave Righetti's father, Leo, play shortstop at Seals Stadium! I went to hundreds of ballgames at Candlestick! I have seniority in this city! And here I am wandering around this place like some kind of senile transient trying to find a place to sit down and watch the goddamed game! The Giants owe me big time for scamming me like this, for subjecting me to serial humiliations.

I FINALLY FOUND a seat where I sat undisturbed the rest of the game, a game that included an inside-the-park home run by the Giants Tomlinson, a kid who wears glasses that make him strongly resemble wanted posters of the Zodiac Killer. I don't recall seeing glasses on a ballplayer since Dom DiMaggio, but then the Giants are the only team I pay any attention to.

I’D WALKED to the ballpark from North Beach, briskly making my way down urine-scented sidewalks rife with stunned people who looked like civilian war casualties, disoriented, hollow-eyed. Hopped on the 30 Stockton for the return trip. This line is called the Orient Express because it bisects Chinatown and its riders are mostly Chinese, many of them older women who look like they're just off the farm in rural China. A young couple — she tall, statuesque in a mini-skirt and form-fitting top, he a head shorter in full Man-Boy — a baseball jersey inscribed 'Lincecum,' cargo shorts, running shoes. The young couple distractedly rubbed each other's upper thighs while they gazed at the screens on their telephones. The Chinese women gazed fascinated at the young couple and chuckled to each other at what they undoubtedly regard as just one more unseemly display on the streets of the Gold Mountain where anything is possible and often is.

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We welcomed October with Banned Books Week and our First Friday Art Walk. Join us this Tuesday, Oct.7th for "The Overnighters", PBS-POV movie & winner of the 2014 Sundance Special Jury Award.

May the Force be with you on Oct. 10th - celebrate Star Wars Reads Day from 11-1 with special Chewie bookmarks & crafts. Later on Oct. 10th at 3 pm, we invite all local teens to our first Teen Leadership Council meeting of the year where teens will learn about new leadership & resume-building opportunities.

Coming Up next week: esteemed fantasy author Tamora Pierce live via Skype on Tues, Oct. 13th!

The Overnighters, a PBS-POV film "Desperate, broken men chase their dreams and run from their demons in the North Dakota oil fields." PBS POV documentary directed by Jesse Moss. Winner, Special Jury Award, 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Feel free to bring your dinner.

Wednesday, October 7th 6pm

Star Wars Reads Day Use the Force to make Chewie bookmarks & Stars-Wars cubeecrafts. All ages welcome.

Sat. Oct. 10th 11 am - 1 pm

Teen Leadership Council District Teens leaders can volunteer and apply for credit toward community service hours while building their resumes.

Gain college & career readiness skills while having fun planning events with peers & helping to design our new teen space! Snacks will be provided.

Saturday, Oct. 10th 3 pm

District Teens space @ Ukiah Library

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Norman de Vall, former 5th District Supervisor

Active with CASA, teens in trouble, student loan relief, single payer health care, and a variety of environmental concerns, Supervisor Norman de Vall will speak on local and national issues at 6 p.m., Friday, October 23rd, Town Hall, corner of Laurel and Main in Fort Bragg. Don't miss it. Admission is free.



  1. Jim Updegraff October 7, 2015

    Yeah, one thing about getting old (I’m 85) you do run into young people who give you their seat on the bus, help you down the stairs, etc. It is always nice to know there are young people who have been properly brought by their parents. Not like the loud mouth worthless punks I see when when I go downtown.

  2. Mike October 7, 2015

    Re: the Teimoury and Connor arrests for “retaking the land after removal” misdeamnor charge against them.

    Ali’s dog Doobie is currently outside the gate of that “land” and a nice lady from the MCSO Animal Control is closely following this. A big thanks to her for following up on my initial call here. Dobbie is relaxed, now being fed and hydrated, and currently his usual friendly self.

    I read the LOL eviction notice, the plaintiff some bank entity called Mellon from New York and from Unknown, California. Anybody know where Unknown, California is?!?!?!

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