- Rainy Days
- Christmas Cheer
- Elliot Maneuvers
- More Denouncements
- Woodhouse Report
- Wimp Nation
- Tax Waivers
- Director Dechter
- Navarro Past
- Library Director
- Master Gardener
- Hare Creek
- Yesterday's Catch
- Sanders Endorsed
- Federal Reserve Banks
- AT&T Says
- Campaign Squabble
- Hemlock Street
- Religious Displays
- Yaz Chat
- Seen the Rain
- Marco Radio
FRIDAY RAINFALL: Boonville had received 1.14 inches by 5pm, bringing its season total up to 9.22 inches. Another couple inches are expected this coming week.
MERRY CHRISTMAS & HAPPY NEW YEAR
AVA, THE NEXT GENERATION
COUNTY COUNSEL Katharine 'Kit' Elliott was in court Thursday attempting to head off a possible ballot measure which would force the County to allocate a fair portion of the Proposition 172 “public safety” money to fire districts in the County. The legal basis for her appearance is not clear at this point. Apparently she filed as a private citizen to have the court rule on the legality of the proposal before it is even presented to the Board of Supervisors (i.e., her, as the Board’s lawyer), much less to the public for a vote.
IN PLAIN TALK, the cops and the DA get all the public safety money while our local fire departments get none. What we have in County Counsel Elliott's blocking of the democratic process is a tax paid lawyer acting on behalf of the tax paid DA and the tax paid cops but against the struggling volunteer citizen fire departments and volunteer emergency services of the County.
ACCORDING TO A SUMMARY prepared by the volunteer fire fighters and emergency services groups trying to get their fair share of the Prop 172 Public Safety money, Ms. Elliott filed the suit because she “believes the proposed measure to be illegal because of its requirements for funding. She further indicated that she was taking this action on behalf of the County’s citizens, not the County. (!) She also stated her action would save money associated with the election process. She thinks a different route for funding should be "pursued.”
IN OTHER WORDS, Elliott claims to be acting as an independent citizen when she's obviously not. She's acting on behalf of one segment of the safety community and against another segment of the safety community, the segment (volunteer emergency and fire people) that has much less entrenched clout than law enforcement.
AT THURSDAY'S HEARING, Elliot bumped Judge Henderson from hearing the case because of his alleged political antipathy for Supervisor Dan Hamburg. The case was transferred to Judge Jeanine Nadel who has functioned as County Counsel herself.
JUDGE NADEL told the small group on hand that she was not familiar with the arguments and would need time to study them, so the case was put over to an unspecified future date.
ALL OF THIS SEEMS PREMATURE, since the measure is still only in draft form, has not been submitted to County Counsel, and has not yet been ruled on by the Board or gone out for signatures. The advocates of the proposal, the recently formed Mendocino County Fire Districts Association, are convinced that the County won’t turn any of the approximately $7 million to fire districts without being forced to by a ballot initiative.
ON WEDNESDAY we posted the remarks of Dr. Ace Barash denouncing Ortner Management Group’s handling of mental health in Mendocino County, along with Malcolm Macdonald’s account of the meeting and Sonya Nesch’s summary showing the dramatic increase in 5150s (cop code for mentally ill and dangerous to self or others) since Ortner got the $7 million contract to provide adult mental health services to the County.
We can now add the remarks of Ortner denouncers Dr. Marvin Trotter and Sheriff Tom Allman, along with the brief board response…
* * *
‘DR. MARVIN TROTTER: “As an inpatient and emergency room physician as well as the chief medical officer at Ukiah Valley Medical Center and an ex-public health officer I have had broad experience with the mental health issues facing this county. I have attended many meetings over the years. Three years ago you had a department that was in disarray that I felt lacked professional qualified managers. To improve the situation the department was privatized to Ortner Management Group but the prior managers were retained. Unfortunately over the last two or three years I do not think this has been a successful solution. The solution to coronary artery disease is not more bypass surgery, but control of diabetes, hypertension and follow-up attention from primary care providers. The solution to mental health disorders is not more 5150 admissions but professional outpatient therapy, medication, case management and housing. These are the upstream issues that need to be addressed by the county within your budget. I urge you to have a series of meetings chaired by Supervisors Gjerde and Woodhouse and local professionals and advocates including the Sheriff without the CEO or mental health administrators to discuss a plan for Mendocino County that would avoid the usual politics and filters of innumerable past meetings that I have attended. The goal would be the most cost-effective locally controlled professional upstream programs for a very difficult problem affecting many patients in great need, where 5150s and jail admissions would be considered a failure of the system.”
SHERIFF TOM ALLMAN: “I represent the three city police chiefs and myself. We certainly believe that there could be some improvement made with mental health. In 1999 Mendocino County made a mistake. Mendocino County closed our only hospital [the Psychiatric Health Facility, PHF, or "puff" unit). We are in a contract situation where we have contracted with private enterprises to provide mental health services. I'm not going to sit here and tell you that everything that happens with these private services is bad because it's not. I believe that one certainly has fewer complaints than the other. But what I'm telling you is that Mendocino County has put ourselves in the passenger seat of a $20 million program with our mental health department. We are in the passenger seat, we are not in the driver's seat. We have to accept decisions that are made by private enterprises. It causes law enforcement to clearly say that mental health right now is the number one public safety concern in Mendocino County. If you don't believe that why don't you find a law enforcement officer that you know and ask him or her in our county how mental health is impacting their day to day activities. We have had situations where our 5150 form that we fill out is not accepted because they are completed in two different colors of ink, black and blue ink, because on Thanksgiving day the officer had to run out to another call and the chief of police from Willits had to complete a form with a different pen. And the form wasn't accepted. I certainly hope that for the amount of money that we are paying the private contractors to take care of the mental health situation that they are going get some direction from this board [pointing], all five of you, that is going to help solve the problem instead of having an ad hoc committee to kick the can down the road. Let me tell you what this board needs to do. It needs to build a building in this county where we can have mental health services provided in Mendocino County. We are paying a lot of money outside of this county to take care of our citizens where the law enforcement agencies at the jail and on the streets are basically the de facto mental health director many times a day. We are standing by at hospitals when the mental health department's private contractors can't get there. While I am not going to say that we should throw the baby out with the bathwater, we need to get to a point where Mendocino County is back doing the mental health services. What I'm saying is, as a person who sat on the RFP committee when we got to where we are right now, I don't believe that we would have ever envisioned the problems that we are having right now. So why don't you please listen to your constituents here. Why don't you please listen to law enforcement officers here. You should say, Where can we improve mental health services so that it's not the number one public safety issue of Mendocino County.”
Supervisor Tom Woodhouse: “I know we don't discuss and engage with public expression but I would like to request that we set this on our next agenda, for January 5, so that we can all talk about this.”
Supervisor Carre Brown: “You are probably going to be looking at standing committees for the coming year instead of the ad hocs that we've been doing so that will be a consideration and maybe during that time as well.”
Supervisor John McCowen: “We are going to have a report in January from Mr. Kemper and his associate. I think whatever agenda item or meeting that that item comes forward this can be can certainly be combined with it. I don't know why we would do the same thing twice.”
SUPERVISOR WOODHOUSE’S DEC. 8 SUPERVISOR’S REPORT (in its entirety): “I would like to… about the CSAC… that week we were there… I was very glad that you [Supervisor Carre Brown] went and I omitted when we talked about it briefly about the classes, how helpful you had been and welcoming me to CSAC and taking me around and that’s why I took all those classes to be a good little boy, so thanks for the energy you put into me. [Brown giggles.] Thank you very much, Madam Chair.”
A FRIEND sent along an essay called Nation of Wimps, the theme being that the only real fraidy cats in the country are the presidential candidates with all their crazy talk about carpet bombing, combating and "sealing our borders." Myself, I haven't yet encountered a single person who's even brought up terrorism other than lamenting, like everyone else, the maniacal attack in San Berdoo and the hundreds of earlier ones.
OF COURSE we're hardly the same people who trudged over Donner Pass a hundred and fifty years ago, but we remain a fine, fat people afraid of no one— no one, do you hear me my fellow wimps?
REALISTICALLY, terrorism is here to stay. If it isn't Muslim fanatics it's our homegrown crazy people. And there won't be any ban on automatic weapons. Really, if a homicidal maniac can shoot a classroom full of children and their teachers, and that doesn't bring an absolute ban on assault rifles the next day, there will never be one.
BUT WHAT ARE the odds that you'll be a victim of one of these episodes, you as one of 310 million people? About the same as you winning the lottery.
MEANWHILE, check the "leadership" of our doomed country. Obama gets off a few platitudes today and flies off in a giant, ozone-depleting airplane for a two week vacation in Hawaii, stopping off in San Bernadino for a photo op with the families of the latest shoot 'em up. He might at least try to throw some gravitas at the overall situation, more dire by the day.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY:
I agree this county needs good jobs but a ten-year waiver of taxes for Carmel’s buddy on the Employers Council, Ross Liberty? Tell me again how “I don’t advocate,” Ms. Angelo. I think you’ve been caught in another “misstatement,” i.e. an untruth. And Supervisor Brown is your mouthpiece, drank the Kool-aid a long time ago. And then tell me why he gets this waiver when county revenue is “still almost flat.” Perhaps a discount would be more appropriate than a total waiver for 10 years. But again he is your good friend and your friends get more privileges than ordinary citizens of this county.
— Helen Michael, County Employee Union Rep
ACCORDING TO THE LETTER from the Supervisors to Mr. Liberty, “In recognition of the significant long term local benefits of a successful project, the Board is open to consideration of incentives such as 10-year property tax abatement on all improvements from the date of initial occupancy, 10-year property tax abatement on capital equipment, alternative funding for infrastructure investment, or other appropriate measures.”
SO NO OFFICIAL DECISION has been made to give a big tax break to Mr. Liberty — yet. In the interest of the “transparency” that the Board and CEO brag about all the time, any decision to give tax breaks to a private citizen should include full disclosure of the names of Mr. Liberty’s “team” (investors) who stand to benefit, and the exact amount of taxes being lost in the process over the full period proposed.
The Board of Directors of Mendocino County Public Broadcasting had a marathon meeting of nearly 12 hours on Monday, December 14th to decide on a new Executive Director/General Manager. There were many qualified applicants, but with a solid consensus we voted for Lorraine Dechter, our stellar news reporter. She will be officially hired at the January 4th Board Meeting in Ukiah.
Dechter came to Mendocino County about a year ago as a part-time contract News Coordinator for KZYX & Z. Since then she has built a top-notch news team, rising to state and national attention during the recent Lake County fires due to the team's excellent breaking news reporting. She is the former Station Manager (and founder) of KFPR-FM in Redding, an NPR sister station to KCHO-FM at California State University, Chico. She retired from Chico State in 2014 and graduated from that university with a bachelor's degree in Communications and major work toward a master's degree.
She has been involved in radio since the age of 14, at the first exclusively cablecasting community radio station in the United States, a non-profit youth organization started by a group of teenagers in 1972.
Stuart Campbell, the station's Interim Executive Director/General Manager for 5 months, started at KZYX as producer of the literary show Consider This. He has served as the Board President, and then stepped in as interim manager for the past 5 months. “He has done a wonderful job,” says Meg Courtney, Board President of Mendocino County Public Broadcasting, who added that he worked for several months as interim manager without pay. “We are deeply grateful to him. Thank you, Stuart, and welcome to you, Lorraine.”
Dechter has a résumé revealing vast multimedia experience. She was producer/director, public information officer, investigative journalist, and arts & fundraising specialist at KIXE-TV in Redding (PBS) since her early 20s. She produced and directed the music series STAGE 9, which was broadcast on 1/3 of the nation's PBS stations, and produced and acquired funding for the long running JOBS show, featuring regional employment and job-related stories and issues.
She has also been a correspondent for the Sacramento Bee, Artist Liaison for Strawberry Music Festival, brought A Prairie Home Companion to Redding, wrote the ethics in news policy for Chico State's public radio station, and was responsible for saving a $250,000 payroll in Shasta County providing entrepreneurial support for non-profit organizations through the AmeriCorps VISTA program.
Dechter has trained hundreds in community media, operating radio boot camps, teacher trainings, school programs and other opportunities. She accomplished much of this through grant procurement and administration. She developed a variety of community engagement models that are recognized for their effectiveness and creativity by her peers in the industry. She has a lot of training in group facilitation, mediation, and volunteer management training. She is in the current class of Leadership Mendocino, thanks to a scholarship from an anonymous KZYX donor and another from the Leadership Mendocino Steering Committee.
Dechter will be officially introduced as Executive Director/General Manager of Mendocino County Public Broadcasting on Monday, January 4th, 2016 at the first Board of Directors meeting of the new year. The location will be Travelodge Ukiah, 1720 N. State Street, at 6:00PM.
Dechter is moderating the 2nd Annual Building Community Through News event and KZYX Holiday Party this Sunday, December 20th, at the SPACE Performing Arts Center (W. Perkins & N. Bush Streets) in Ukiah from 2-5pm. The event is a potluck, and there is no admission charge. The guest speaker is Elizabeth Larson, Editor/Publisher of the Lake County News.
INTERVIEWS ON THE NAVARRO RIVER & FISHING (1995)
Francis (Frank) Ray & Geneva Linn Ray
Interviewer: Hillary Adams
At their home Ranch on Navarro Ridge Road west of the Grange, May 29, 1995
[Comments in brackets by Hillary Adams, 1999]
Frank: My grandparents came from County Cork, Ireland. My mother was born there. They came in a sailing ship from England. They went to Manchester. My mother was born there. My father, John Francis Ray, was born here. I was born right up the road in 1904. [Age: 91]
Geneva: This ranch belonged to my parents. I was born in this house in 1909. We had 200 acres originally. My dad was born in Glasgow, Scotland. My grandparents came out here. They went to Orr Springs first and opened a brick kiln in Ukiah.[Age: 86]
Fishing the Navarro:
Frank: We fished the Navarro since we were able to walk. Lots of trout, grills [small steelhead or salmon, one foot long]. There were thousands of fish. The holes were full of them. We fished the holes. From the banks, it was solid with fish. In the Fall we trolled from the mouth. There would be twenty-five boats. Everyone caught fish. We would row a bit and then had a fish on the line. Salmon come in the fall. We didn't use a net, we used a hook and line. Just tie a spinner on the line and a fish would grab it.
Geneva: People would take crab nets to the bridge and drop them over the side and get the crab. Now you couldn't get a crab out of that river if you wanted to. Dad used beef bones for bait. He would throw them out and walk the crab in.
There were schools of herring there [Navarro River] and in the Albion River. We didn't like them, they were greasy. The Finnish people thought they were great. There were flounders in the Navarro River. Caught them by hook and line. And there were Surfish six inches long. We would dip an A-frame net into the waves and catch them as the wave came by. We would wade into the surf.
We made our own nets. We used branches from little trees for the A-frame. Then we would buy line and weave the net with a shuttle. You held onto the cross piece, and there was a hinge.
We took the River for granted. I hunted and fished a lot. I would leave the two children with Mother and walk down to the River, take the motorboat. Our property bordered the River so I could tie up everywhere. I caught some fish and came back.
About the sandbar and the River:
Frank: There was a breakwater when we were young. The river didn't close then.
Geneva: I got my butt spanked more than once for going down to the bridge for crab. It was a big, dangerous river then, very deep with a fast current… Now it's nothing but a dirty lagoon. The bridge was further toward Navarro-by-the-Sea Hotel than it is now.
Frank: It was a roaring river. Much deeper. There were big freshets. The limbs of cut trees would be caught way up in the alders. Now it’s filling up with dirt.
Geneva: I think the vineyards are taking out all the water. The River used to be high in the winter. Now, even when we have had lots of rain, the River is still shallow. It was a very deep river then.
* * *
David Foster Fishing Guide, Navarro River
Interviewed by Hillary Adams, telephone interview, July 29, 1995, with interviewer's comments.
David Foster has been fishing the Navarro since the early 1970's both for himself and as a guide. In that time he has seen very few salmon in the Navarro: “I have caught some in there. Coho, not king.”
David has fished for salmon off the Navarro beach in more recent years when the bar closed the river mouth for long periods, and caught salmon there in September and October. “There were Salmon out there in the ocean a few years ago. I remember I walked across the bar and fished just under those houses on the cliff and caught salmon there.”
In David's opinion: What you need is enough water coming down the river to keep it open. There was a lot more water flowing through at all times of year in the 70's and early 80's.
David continues: In my opinion, the most important thing that has affected the salmon and steelhead in the Navarro is water diversions upstream. I have actually seen the River go down since then. I mean suddenly down and then back up again.
When asked about the effect of draught he said:
Draught is a factor but the most important is the proliferation of the water diversions.
In David's opinion, the next most important factor is massive siltation.
There is gravel under all that muck that is in the estuary now. You just have to take a steel rod and push it down to hit the gravel.
About the River mouth and its action (open or closed) he said:
The river mouth was usually open until about ten or twelve years ago. It was open in the 70's and the early 8O's.
On artificial opening of the bar: I can remember being on the beach one time when some people cut through the bar. I watched the water rush out. Almost immediately there were salmon pulling in. They were just waiting out there.
Generally, David fishes for steelhead. He says the Navarro River was never the best known river for Coho, there were others that were better, but it was “the best steelhead river anywhere around.”
He also says that there was a period when the California Department of Fish and Game stocked the Navarro:
That river was stocked at one time with steelhead. They got the stock out of the Talmage ponds. Fish and Game stocked the river in 1985, I think, and for about three years after that. They dumped 90,000 smolt into the river one year. That was our best year. Before that they stocked about 10,000 a year. I just threw out the stocking numbers for the later 70's and 80's, but Fish and Game should have them. The numbers fluctuated wildly.
He thinks the year they put in "90,000" smelt was the last year they stocked the river.
According to David: The bulk of the steelhead come just about the December solstice. Some come earlier, some as early as November. That's the first wave. Even in recent years, usually the bar has been open and ready for them. The young run out throughout the winter in the high water and end about in January. There is a mix of young and old going down and upstream in February. I've occasionally seen them in the estuary, but mostly it is the pools further upstream.
The pools he guides people to retain their old names even though the objects that identify them are now often gone: Trestle Hole, The Guard Hole, Berry Patch Hole, Jungle Hole.
Asked about the tidal influence of the estuary he said:
It goes about four miles up, just beyond the Swimming Hole. [3.66 mile marker on Hwy 128] There is a riffle up there, just opposite the hollow log. That is the edge of it. Once in awhile it goes higher up when the tides are very high, but otherwise there is no tidal influence above that riffle.
LOPEZ TO LOPEZ: On December 17, 2015 at approximately 10:22 PM Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office responded to the report of a stolen dump trailer and vandalism of a vehicle in the 2000 block of North State Street in Ukiah, California. Witnesses reported seeing three suspect vehicles leaving the Mendocino Auto Action property after vandalizing a vehicle and stealing an oversized dump trailer. Once Deputies arrived at the location a vehicle was located, which had all of its windows broken out, and the trailer was found missing (stolen). During a search of the area Deputies located the three suspect vehicles in Redwood Valley, California. After conducting traffic stops of the vehicles, Jose H. Lopez, 32, of Ukiah, and Jose A. Lopez, 28, of Willits, were arrested for felony vandalism, conspiracy, and grand theft in connection with the incident. The California Highway Patrol assisted the Sheriff's Office and determined Jose H. Lopez and Jose A. Lopez had been driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of an alcoholic beverage. Both were subsequently arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. The trailer was subsequently located and recovered at a different location in Redwood Valley. Jose H. Lopez and Jose A. Lopez were booked into the Mendocino County Jail for Grand Theft, Criminal Conspiracy, Felony Vandalism, and Driving Under the Influence and were held on $20,000 bail.
SUPES APPOINT ACTING LIBRARY DIRECTOR
On December 15, 2015, the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors announced the appointment of Karen Horner as the Acting Library Director for the Mendocino County Library.
Supervisor Carre Brown, representing the 1st District and current Board Chair, commented on the Board’s action stating, “On behalf of the Board, I know we are all very excited to see Ms. Horner in her new role, understanding that she brings with her both experience and passion for the work she does."
Ms. Horner previously served as Branch Librarian in the Tulare County library system before coming to Mendocino County. Most recently, Ms. Horner has served as the Branch Librarian for the Fort Bragg Branch of the Mendocino County Library.
Ms. Horner received her Bachelor of Science in Agriculture at Oregon State University in 2008 and furthered her education, receiving her Master of Library Science and Information Science at San Jose State University in 2014.
The Mendocino County Library District comprises five locations (Coast Community/Pt. Arena, Covelo, Fort Bragg, Ukiah, and Willits) in addition to the Bookmobile traveling library branch serving remote locations throughout the county.
For more information, please contact the Mendocino County Executive Office at (707) 463-4441.
— Heidi Dunham, Mendocino County Human Resources Director
UCCE MASTER GARDENER CLASS
There are still a few places left in the 2015 Master Gardener Class that will kick off on the coast on January 14. Please use the attached link to access information and an application form. Give me a call or e-mail me off list if you have questions.
HOLIDAYS WITH THE SMITHS: On December 12, 2015 at approximately 9:30 PM, Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a reported physical assault of a child by her father at a residence located in the 30400 block of North Highway 101 in Willits, California. Upon arrival the Deputies contacted Andrew Smith, 50, of Willits, his girlfriend, 51, of Willits, and the couple’s 12 year-old daughter. Deputies learned Smith had grabbed the girlfriend by the throat and pushed her onto a couch. The daughter came to her mother’s aid by striking Smith on the arms and legs with a rod made of very lightweight aluminum. Smith took the piece of aluminum from the daughter and struck her three times in the legs and once in the chest. At that point the incident concluded and the daughter called 911 for assistance. None of the involved persons had any complaint of pain or obvious visible injury associated with the incident. Smith was arrested for misdemeanor domestic violence and corporal abuse of a child. Smith was booked into the Mendocino County Jail to be held in lieu of $25,000 bail.
HARE CREEK BLUES
If you are interested to see the video from the Dec. 14 city council meeting it is available here:
Hare Creek issues were raised between 3:40:20 to 4:05:39.
Link to important documents about the Hare Creek Center:
Apparently the city has a list of about 30 consultants that live in Northern CA or close by and can do this work. The city will encourage them to bid.
The library has the book "Understanding Environmental Impact Assessment, A Layperson's Guide to Environmental Impact Documents & Processes". Amazon sells it for about $30. I have a copy. It has good info. that will help people who want to comment during the scoping session that will be in April. The city is expecting about 100-200 comments. We should have at least a 1,000 comments. Spread the word. They will probably choose a small venue to limit input.
We asked for more than 1 scoping session. Marie Jones agreed to this on a phone conversation with me, but did not put it in writing on the bid.
To finish the EIR might take a year.
* * *
New bid posted
Environmental Impact Report for the Hare Creek Center
The City of Fort Bragg is seeking proposals from qualified environmental consulting firms interested in contracting with the City of Fort Bragg to prepare a project-level Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the proposed Hare Creek Center shopping facility. The project will consist of the following: A new shopping center anchored by Grocery Outlet consisting of three buildings, including: Building A at 15,000 square feet, Building B at 10,000 square feet and Building C at 4,500 square feet, for a total of 29,500 square feet of retail space. Associated development includes a new access road, a new 99 space parking lot, loading zones, pedestrian improvements, rain water storage tanks, utility connections, drainage improvements, utilities, signage and landscaping.
Bid Category: Contractual Services
Publication Date/Time: December 16, 2015, 08:00 AM
Closing Date/Time: February 19, 2016, 05:00 PM
CATCH OF THE DAY, December 18, 2015
JOHNNY AZBILL, Ukiah. Community Supervision violation.
SEAN FLINTON, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)
MANUEL FREASE JR., Covelo. Sale of meth, prior strike.
ROBERT FULLER, Fort Bragg. Stolen vehicle, possession of meth, suspended license.
MARIO GONZALEZ, Fort Bragg. Lewd-lascivious on child under 14.
ANTHONY HIDALGO, Ukiah. Parole violation.
LOUIS KRULL, Fort Bragg. DUI, misdemeanor hit&run.
JOSE LOPEZ-SANCHEZ, Willits. Grand theft, conspiracy, DUI.
JOSE LOPEZ, Ukiah. Grand theft, vandalism, conspiracy, DUI.
ANDREW MAYNARD, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)
DONALD MCCLOUD, Ukiah. Parole violation.
DONAVAN PARRISH, Ukiah. Possession of controlled substance, probation revocation.
JAQUELINE POLLARD, Fort Bragg. Switchblade in vehicle.
STEPHNIE STAINBROOK, Willits. Domestic assault.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who has actually forced an audit of the Federal Reserve. Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who can deal with the Fedpocalypse.
ABC gave 20 seconds of coverage to Bernie Sanders one week, when Trump got 81 minutes of coverage, because Trump is corporate-media friendly. Bernie Sanders is critical of corporate media.
The progressive political advocacy group Democracy for America backed Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-Vt.) Democratic presidential bid on Thursday, in the organization’s first presidential primary endorsement since former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean (D) founded it in 2004.
Sanders earned the endorsement after receiving 87.9 percent of the votes cast by DFA members nationwide over a nine-day voting period. No Democratic candidate was able to clear the 66.7 percent supermajority needed to earn the DFA endorsement ahead of the 2008 presidential election.
Bernie Sanders has now been endorsed by the Communication Workers of America and will intensify ground work in Texas, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who has received donations from 2 MILLION citizens. Bernie Sanders has refused contributions from billionaires and does not have a SuperPac.
Bernie Sanders is honest, transparent, and is not owned by special interests.
SOME PEOPLE THINK that the Federal Reserve Banks are United States Government institutions. They are private monopolies which prey upon the people of these United States for the benefit of themselves and their foreign customers; foreign and domestic speculators and swindlers; and rich and predatory money lenders.
— Louis McFadden, Chairman of the House Banking and Currency Committee, 1930
“DISPOSSESSED IN THE LAND OF DREAMS” by Monica Potts, The New Republic
Suzan Russaw is 70 years old. She lived in affordable Palo Alto housing for decades. Then, in 2013, she was forced to move into her car. On the new homeless of Silicon Valley.
WHY GIVING BACK ISN’T ENOUGH
AT&T SAYS: Yes, Our New North Coast 'Network Upgrade' Will Include Emergency Access to East-West Fiber (Lost Coast Outpost, Humboldt County)
THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE has cut off Bernie Sanders’ campaign from the master voter file for improperly accessing his rival Hillary Clinton’s confidential voter data, TheWashington Post reported late Thursday. Citing several officials, the Post reports the DNC suspended Sanders’ campaign from using the party’s crucial voter information until it provides an explanation and guarantees the Clinton data has been destroyed. Sanders campaign manager Jeff Weaver acknowledged that a low-level staffer had viewed the information but claimed it was accessed because of a glitch by a software vendor hired by the DNC. Weaver said a staffer was fired over the incident. The DNC controls a master list of voter data that is rented out to campaigns, which then add information amassed by their own staff.
* * *
The Democratic National Committee relented on Friday night, allowing the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign to once again access its voter data after the Sanders camp on Friday afternoon filed a lawsuit against the DNC. The committee’s decision came close to midnight, when a federal judge was supposed to hear an emergency injunction filed by the Sanders campaign. The DNC had barred the Vermont senator’s campaign from using its data troves after Sanders staff improperly accessed confidential voter information collected by rival Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
ON HEMLOCK STREET
I see broad shoulders,
a silver head,
and I think: John!
And I think: dead.
— Ursula K. Le Guin
THE TRADITION OF CHARITY
by Ralph Nader
The old saying “it’s better to give than to receive” is often recited around the holidays when it comes to the tradition of gift giving. This type of giving is usually centered on small, personal gifts such as items of clothing, books, and delicious food. But the saying can apply to the rewards of giving beyond friends and family. Our generosity can also include long-lasting ways to benefit society now and in the future. We must ask ourselves what gifts we want to give to future generations so that their lives can be nourished.
In my book, The Seventeen Traditions, I wrote about the ideals my parents passed along to my siblings and me. The chapter on “the tradition of charity” contains the following story, which I hope will inspire some reflection and contemplation this holiday season.
One bright summer afternoon, Dad took me for a ride around town. I suspected there was a purpose to this trip beyond catching the breezes by the lake or watching the teenagers playing sandlot baseball near the high school, and I was right.
First, we drove past the Beardsley and Memorial Library. Ellen Rockwell Beardsley had started this institution in 1901, he told me, with a donation of ten thousand dollars — a princely sum at that time. He then drove up Spencer Street until we got to the Litchfield Country Hospital — the first such institution in the county in 1902, when it was built, and also a product of private charity. Down a few more roads to the other end of town, and we were at the Gilbert School, a high school that for years was regarded as among the best in the nation. The Gilbert School was launched by a local industrialist, William Gilbert, who built the world-renowned Gilbert Clock Company in Winsted. His original gift established Gilbert as a private secondary school, the Gilbert School, but it gradually became more public over the years as more tax dollars were used to supplement a declining endowment.
Turning left, my father drove up a hill to Highland Lake. Nearby there was a small, inviting park with some seats and tables for having outdoor lunches — a park established by another local philanthropist. Then we made a 180-degree turn and drove down toward the long Main Street — passing the Winchester Historical Society, founded and nurtured with charitable contributions. He drove past some other charities, including the imposing Gilbert Home for orphans and other needy children, and arrived at the beautiful Soldiers’ Monument, so central to my childhood imagination. The town had paid a dear price in casualties during the Civil War, and after the war ended a volunteer veteran and local philanthropist promoted the idea of such a memorial; it was finally dedicated in 1890. With several donated acres of hilltop land, the structure and its grounds soon became a haven for the townspeople, who still conduct summer theater there, and whose children frolic on its grounds or run around the perimeter.
When we’d finished our tour of the area, my father pulled up to our house and turned the ignition off. “See all those fine establishments in our little town?” he said to me. “Think about how important they are to our community. Then ask yourself this question: Since 1900, there were and are at least a hundred townspeople as wealthy as those philanthropists were. What kind of town would this be if those people put some of their wealth back into the community the same way?” We sat there together in silence, a light wind breezing through the open windows. While I’ve since traveled many miles to many places, I’ve never forgotten the lesson I learned on that one trip.
(Ralph Nader is a consumer advocate, lawyer and author of Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!)
PHISHING FOR FOOLS: George Akerlof and Robert Shiller’s new book, Phishing for Phools is subtitled, “the economics of manipulation and deception.” Akerlof and Shiller aren’t using the word “phishing” in the sense in which it’s usually employed, to denote an internet-specific form of fraud that involves pretending to be someone else in order to gain personal information. Both men are Nobel laureates in economics, in 2001 and 2013 respectively, which no doubt empowers them to use “phishing” to mean whatever the hell they want it to mean. Here, they use “phishing” to mean “getting people to do things that are in the interest of the phisherman, but not in the interest of the target.” A phool is someone who has been successfully phished. If you buy the three-buck packet of a few ibuprofen, that’s you.
This is rich territory in our modern economies, and Akerlof and Shiller have many examples from which to choose. Some are smaller and more personal than others: for one, gym membership. The overwhelming majority of people — 80%, according to an academic study they cite — would do better to pay as they use the gym rather than sign up to a monthly contract. Why don’t people do that? Because they are phished: gyms structure contracts to look appealing, and then make them as hard as possible to unwind. From the 83 gyms in the academic study, only seven would accept cancellation of a monthly contract by phone, and of the 54 who would accept a letter, “25 required it to be notarized.” The average amount lost by monthly members was a non-trivial $600 out of an annual cost of $1400.
Many, many industries phish. In the world of finance, Akerlof and Shiller find so many examples that the reader starts to wonder if it’s the rule rather than the exception. An interesting category of phishing in this world concerns “reputation mining,” the process by which a company establishes a reputation for probity, and then uses it to do unscrupulous things. In this context there is an extensive discussion of Goldman Sachs. Akerlof and Shiller also focus on the Savings and Loan scandals of the late 1980s, which involved widespread and systematic fraud as well as phishing. They re-tell the story of the sub-prime loan disaster with heavy emphasis on phishing at all stages of the process. Their examples from the world of lobbying and politics are strong too. The company Ocean Spray was at one point in the 1980s facing legislation forcing it to point out that cranberry juice, its main product, was 75% water. So they simply made sure that “a handful of congressmen were given speaking engagements with honoraria of $2000 and $4000; $375,000 of PAC contributions were also distributed. Prohibition against any regulation requiring disclosure of fruit-juice content was, with no fanfare, slipped into an appropriations bill.” The cost of the lobbying was a few hundred thousand dollars. In 2011, Ocean Spray sold $1.5 billion’s worth of cranberry juice in the US. The consumer is phished, and the political process is phixed.
— John Lancaster
CONFUCIUS DIDN'T SAY THAT
Tis the season!
I beat the Marine Corps and now have to take on a local branch library.
Irv Sutley, Glen Ellen, Sonoma County
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I just spoke to the branch manager here at the Rincon Valley Library. I raised a California Constitutional objection to the posting of a comment in the foyer area which by its placement gives the impression of government endorsement of religion - in this case an quotation attributed to a religious sectarian figure.
"IT IS BETTER TO LIGHT ONE SMALL CANDLE THAN TO CURSE THE DARKNESS — Confucius"
This and other religious based comments should not be given focal display at the entrance to a public facility. This is a slippery slope which would or lead to the possible posting of the Christian 10 commandments, the anti-intellectual Islamic State male supremacy, or even something like the Westborough baptist babblings. Religion and atheism at a public library belong in books on the shelf, not in a place of prominence.
In your response please give me the courtesy of replying to and including the entire text of this message. (There doesn't appear to be a way for me to use this form and have a copy sent to my email)
Please notify me of your decision in this matter within 10 business days. Best times to reach you: By email
* * *
Dear Mr. Sutley,
Thank you for your feedback on our current quote on our quotation board. I have gone through books, magazine articles and web pages reading a bit about Confucius, and in conclusion there is much out there that both supports and refutes Confucianism as a religion. In a nutshell, there is an endless amount of research aimed at both sides.
Through this experience I have reminded myself and my staff that the main focus of our quotation board is not the person whose words we are sharing, but the words themselves. In terms of this quotation that my staff have attributed to Confucius (and about which some sources simply cite as Chinese proverb), I no longer have confidence that Confucius should be credited with the quotation itself. For this reason we had removed the quotation last week on Wednesday from the quotation board.
I agree with you that we should take careful consideration about what we post on the quotation board and additionally that as a public agency it is our responsibility to do so, and for many reasons not the least of which is accuracy and that the information posted is secular in nature.
We appreciate your time on this matter, and I hope my email helps dispel your concerns. If not, could we consider further discussion in person or by telephone?
Jennifer Duran, Branch Manager, Rincon Valley Library
6959 Montecito Blvd., Santa Rosa, CA 95409
(707) 537-0162 x0811
* * *
From: Jennifer Duran <email@example.com>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 9:51 AM
Subject: Rincon Valley Library quotation board follow-up
Good morning Mr. Sutley,
My apologies for the delay in response. I had scheduled some days off last week to spend time with visiting family.
I am copying your original words from the email you sent through our Ask Us! service per your request. My response follows your inquiry below.
* * *
From: Irv Sutley [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 10:47 AM
To: Jennifer Duran <email@example.com>
Cc: Jan Tucker <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Rincon Valley Library quotation board follow-up
Dear Ms. Duran,
I appreciate your thoroughness in looking into this matter. I still maintain that Confucianism constitutes a religion and is therefore not a proper subject for a focal point at the entrance to a public, tax supported facility. (California Constitution Article XVI, Section 5).
I further accept that if the quotation is question is not an accurate attribution that alone would be justification for your decision to remove. Please understand that in no way do I object to any works on religion or in opposition to religion being part of the collections you maintain at your library.
* * *
From: Jennifer Duran <email@example.com>
To: 'Irv Sutley' <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 2:06 PM
Subject: RE: Rincon Valley Library quotation board follow-up
Hi Mr. Sutley,
I am glad to have seen you this morning inside our library and for your follow-up email below. Thank you for your time on this matter in general. Enjoy a good afternoon.
Best to you,
* * *
To: Jennifer Duran <email@example.com>
Sent: Friday, December 18, 2015 3:44 PM
Subject: Re: Rincon Valley Library display of judeo-christian totems.
Dear Ms. Duran,
A few moments ago I spoke to you in the foyer of the Rincon Valley library where I had just lodged a complaint about the religious display in the locked glass case. You assured me that you would remove these religious symbols this afternoon: including a Bethlehem birthplace scene, a cruciform, numerous angels, and so forth and so on.
This display at a public institution violates the First Amendment of the United States Constitution as well as several provisions of the California state constitution (Article XVI, section 5 comes to mind). No favoritism to any sect, creed, church, etc. is permissible.
SISTER YASMIN WRITES: Hey Folks, after lobbying The Station [KZYX] for weeks, months and years to Please Promo The Discussion, they finally did yesterday, and you all DID NOT CALL THE SHOW! Why not? It would have been a great opportunity for some Participatory Democracy and US all talking to each other. But, you did not bother to call the show, the very last one of this year. How sad. It was a very dumb show. Extremely. Beside my call, I think it was Allie who called about the Charter Movement and Hack & Squirt, but she called at the very end of the show, and they ran out of time. Too bad. Otherwise, it was just dumb and dumber. Sigh. How sad and what a waste of a very good hour of US being able to Talk To Each Other over OUR Airwaves!!
THE DISCUSSION will be on again on Thursday, January 7, 2016 at 7pm on kzyx/z. Please do call up and participate this time! With a new GM, new PD and new year, I thought that we had/have a lot to talk to each other about. Yes? As they say, "Use it or lose it!", so please avail yourselves of this open forum for dialogue between We The People.
Happy Holidays, DJ Sister Yasmin 707-884-4703
"HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE RAIN"
Someone told me long ago
There's a calm before the storm,
I know; It's been comin' for some time.
When it's over, so they say,
It'll rain a sunny day,
I know; Shinin' down like water.
I want to know, Have you ever seen the rain?
I want to know, Have you ever seen the rain
Comin' down on a sunny day?
Yesterday, and days before,
Sun is cold and rain is hard,
I know; Been that way for all my time.
'Til forever, on it goes
Through the circle, fast and slow,
I know; It can't stop, I wonder.
— John Fogerty
"You owe Meester Niska money. There ees no mind-changing." — Crow But in fact there ees. Contrary to what I told you last week, I'll be reading my Memo of the Air Good Night Radio show tonight starting 9pm by live remote from far away, in Juanita's kitchen, and not from KNYO's storefront back room at 325 N. Franklin in Fort Bragg. And also probably again next week, on Xmas day night, too. But for sure I'll be back in Fort Bragg for the New Year's day night show, so that's the night you should plan to bring your musical instrument(s) and show-and-tell materials to the station and just walk in, head for the lighted back room and get my attention so I can set up a microphone for you and we can go from there. There's no pressure; I always have enough material. It's just nicer when you visit. If you're in or near Fort Bragg, you can listen to KNYO-LP on 107.7fm, and wherever else you might be you can listen via http://knyo.org or http://tunin.com
Also if you're in Ukiah you can join the show in progress at midnight via KMEC 105.1fm, thanks to the delightful and conscientious Ed Nieves and Sid Cooperider.