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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, Jan 6, 2016

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STORM DOOR OPENING: Series of weather systems to bring plenty of wet weather and snow in higher elevations.

“The series of storms impacting the West Coast this week will be a bit different than what the region has experienced in recent months. This go around, even Southern California can expect a decent helping of much-needed rain and mountain snow. For parts of the Siskiyous and Sierra, as well as parts of the Four Corners, expect hefty amounts of snow to pile up through the week ahead. This will add to a Sierra snowpack that is much more substantial than at the same point last year. According to the USDA/NRCS, through Jan. 1, 2016, the Sierra snowpack was 100% or more of average for the season.” — Weather Underground


Tuesday Night: Scattered showers before 10pm, then rain after 10pm. The rain could be heavy at times. Low around 41. South southeast wind 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New precipitation amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.

Wednesday: Rain before 10am, then showers and possibly a thunderstorm after 10am. Some of the storms could produce small hail and heavy rain. High near 47. South wind 5 to 11 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New rainfall amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.

Wednesday Night: Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Some of the storms could produce small hail. Cloudy, with a low around 39. South southeast wind around 6 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.

Thursday: Showers likely, mainly after 10am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 48. East southeast wind around 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.

Thursday Night: A 40% chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 36.

Friday: A 20% chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 49.

Friday Night: A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 38.

Saturday: A chance of rain. Partly sunny, with a high near 49. Saturday Night A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 36.

Sunday: Partly sunny, with a high near 49.

Sunday Night: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 38.

Monday: A chance of rain. Partly sunny, with a high near 49.

Monday Night: A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 39.

Tuesday: A chance of rain. Partly sunny, with a high near 48.

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HIGH SURF ADVISORY valid from Jan 5 1:05 PM to Jan 7 10:00 AM PST

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(But it’s Marissa Colombi not Columbi, and Dennis Boardman’s nickname was Squint, not Mountain Man.)

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THE FOLLOWING MENDO SCHOOLS are described as failing (“Low achieving”) by the State Department of Education. We've appended a link to a Press Democrat story describing Sonoma County educators whining about how unfair the rankings are. "We teach real good but they don't learn nohow." Mendo's edu-heavy hitters haven't yet been heard from.

Format: County, District, School, School Type, 2013 Growth API

(School Type: E = Elementary, M = Middle, H = High)

Mendocino, Anderson Valley Unified, Anderson Valley Elementary, E, 783

Mendocino, Arena Union Elementary, Arena Elementary, E, 759

Mendocino, Fort Bragg Unified, Dana Gray Elementary, E, 767

Mendocino, Mendocino Unified, Mendocino K-8, E, 792

Mendocino, Round Valley Unified, Round Valley Elementary, E, 623

Mendocino, Ukiah Unified, Grace Hudson Elementary, E, 668

Mendocino, Ukiah Unified, Nokomis Elementary, E, 694

Mendocino, Willits Unified, Baechtel Grove Middle, M, 727

Mendocino, Willits Unified, Brookside Elementary, E, 779

Mendocino, Laytonville Unified, Laytonville Elementary, E, 714

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DAVID SEVERN WRITES: In Valley People of two weeks ago you mentioned that your favorite local wild place was that stretch of Rancheria Creek from Mt. View Rd. down to Philo. You said it was so wild there weren't even signs of pot gardens. I know the following is long-winded but I think it is of Valley People interest.

When young I think I could have made the trek in one day starting at Sunrise but in the few trips that I've made I never did, usually spending one night on the river. My last full walk included three of my grandkids Otto, Angus and Maria. We spent two nights and had parents moaning "What has Grandpa done with our children?" as it got closer to the end of the second day. The man that is probably the most knowledgeable person about that very inaccessible AV back country, Charlie Hiatt, had been contacted to prepare a search. I had a hand-held radio but finding just the right spot to get out was difficult. Finally and thank god, I hit a repeater on Sanel Mountain above Hopland and was able to reach Jan Wasson-Smith who was then able to get the word to Saffron et al that we would be spending an extra night. Whew!

Actually, the story I want to tell is of an earlier trip I made with Pom Pom the little fluffy, black Philo shitless dog that I inherited from my daughter Dandelion who got him from Joe King who used to live where Witching Stick is now. (In those days Roger Hecht went around telling everybody that he wasn't Joe King.) We started out in the afternoon and wandered upstream until moved to set up camp for the night.

In those days there were decent waterflows in the warm days going into summer so you mostly waded, sometimes chest high and even, in places, swimming. There were very few gravel side bars to walk along on as with current conditions. My interest was the ancient Native presence in the Valley area, so as I walked I watched for flat areas beside the stream that might make for good Native camps.

Rising early and after a couple hours we came to a barely visible, overgrown little stream coming down from the North. It seemed alluring so my dog Pom Pom and I started working our way up this little tangled tricolor when soon the smell of death was all around — the further we went the stronger it got. Having some experience walking in the woods and stumbling on the occasional carcass I didn't think much of it. Around a bend I could see sunlight on an area that seemed to be a flat bench above the little creek, a perfect site for an old Indian Camp. I clawed my way up the steep bank and crawled out on all fours right into the middle of a large pot patch. Oh Shit! My brain went off like a firecracker fused with the smell of death. While I was brought up with the counter culture, drop-out crowd of pot growers, there was a new breed who were starting to get a rep for defending their staked out hard work with rifles. Could that dead something not be a hapless wild animal but a person? The only time before that I have turned and scrambled so heedlessly, verging on panic back in the direction from which I've come, was years before when I came literally face to face with the cold, beady eyes and flicking red tongue of a coiled rattlesnake beside a railroad tunnel just outside of Alderpoint, Humboldt County.

It didn't take long to get back to the River, but by the time I did I believe I composed several promises (mentally begging for my life) in both English and Spanish to whomever it was growing the pot that if they didn't shoot me I wouldn't come back and steal their crop or even tell anybody else where it was.

Another couple hours upstream I ran across Gary Wakeman rafting downstream with his two kids. He had done it several times he said and was surprised that I had gotten as far as I did on foot. I kept my promise and didn't even mention the marijuana patch.

An old story tells how the ancient people of Lemkolil (Boonville in Pomo language) ate the flesh of a monster and turned into deer. Two people only, a brother and a sister, did not eat and remained human. They lived over the mountains southwest of Boonville, along Rancheria Creek. They were wild people but did ordinary people (deer) no harm. In fact they taught the proper and respectful way to hunt and would capture anybody who hunted improperly. I like to think they are still taking care of the area.

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TOMMY WAYNE KRAMER, the Ukiah Daily Journal's brilliant columnist and irreplaceable mote in the eye of the smug and the self-righteous, inland division, got himself a New Year's Day helicopter ride to Santa Rosa. Heart trouble of the major type. He writes, “Yesterday, Jan 1, this happened, then that happened and pretty soon I checked in to UVMC but only for a couple hours, after which they helicoptered me to Santa Rosa with another of those heart attack thingies I keep catching. I’m at Memorial Hospital. They might work their magic on me Monday and let me out (in a car or a pine box) Tuesday. It’s real neat and I’m having a fabulous time. Thinking of you all. If I don’t make it, carry on my work. For the children. Tom.”

“FOR THE CHILDREN.” I love that. Tom has the hypocrisy of “progressive” Mendo nailed, again, which is why the stuffier inland pwoggies are always whining to the Journal's editor, KC Meadows to fire him. (Depend on the pwogs to censor anybody and anything they don't like.) “For the children” is a kind of Mendo mantra unironically invoked by the local educational establishment and helping professionals generally, and always a sure sign that the “the kids” are being thrown over the side or are about to be converted to cash. Tom has the phonies cold, and here's hoping he and his pen are soon home where he's needed most — Ukiah.

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UNUSUAL WEATHER RELATED MULTI-VEHICLE COLLISION, central valley style, on New Year’s Day, finally documented by the CHP: On Friday, January 1, 2016, at approximately 8:30am, a California Highway Patrol officer was notified by a passing motorist of a vehicle down an embankment on northbound Highway 101 near North State Street on the north side of Ukiah. The officer responded towards the reported collision scene in dense fog with icy roadway conditions. Instead of discovering a vehicle down the embankment, the officer came upon a multiple vehicle traffic collision on Highway 101 at the north end of the Presswood Overcrossing just south of North State Street. The Presswood Overcrossing was completely iced over and the visibility on the freeway was minimal. Both lanes of the freeway were blocked by a utility trailer and a Ford pickup was partially blocking the outside lane on the north end of the overcrossing. The officer began directing traffic around the multivehicle collision and observe several additional vehicle collisions from outside his patrol vehicle before the scene was finally stabilized. At the request of the California Highway Patrol, the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office and the Ukiah Police Department assisted in closing down the freeway and diverting northbound traffic onto Perkins Street through the city of Ukiah. In total, there were a total of seven separate traffic collisions in a span of approximately eight minutes. The only reported injury was a small laceration to the forehead of one of the involved parties. The injured party was transported to the Ukiah Valley Medical Center and was subsequently released.

— CHP Press Release, 1/5/2016

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On 12/28/2015 deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office were called to investigate a burglary in Redwood Valley. Upon arrival Deputies learned a residence had been burglarized while the homeowners were away. Several items were taken which included distinctive jewelry and collectables, the value of the items was in excess of $10,000. Deputies were able to locate latent fingerprints as well as other physical evidence and statements from neighbors.

On 01/03/2015 Deputies were contacted by Detectives from the Ukiah Police Department regarding stolen property located in a local hotel room occupied by Lonnie Hesser. A review of the stolen property list provided by the victim revealed several of the items located in Hesser’s possession were in fact stolen from the burglary in Redwood Valley.

On 01/04/2015 Deputies met with the victim at the Ukiah Police Department. The victim was able to identify several items of stolen property taken during the burglary. The items located and returned to the victim were valued in excess of $4,000. Hesser was booked into the Mendocino County Jail on charges of burglary and possessing stolen property. The investigation into the burglary is continuing.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, January 5, 2016

Garcia, Lucas, A.Martin, M. Martin
Garcia, Lucas, A.Martin, M. Martin

RONYN GARCIA, Tampa, Florida/Ukiah. Pot possession for sale, conspiracy.

JESSIE LUCAS, Ukiah. Meth possession for sale.

AMBER MARTIN, Ukiah. Misdemeanor hit&run, controlled substance, paraphernalia.

MICHAEL MARTIN, Willits. Parole violation.

Munoz, Pedroza, Rodriguez, Szczepanek
Munoz, Pedroza, Rodriguez, Szczepanek

THELMO MUNOZ, Ukiah. Pot possession for sale, conspiracy.

SALVADOR PEDROZA, Hopland. Court order violation, failure to appear.

JOSE RODRIGUEZ, Ukiah. DUI, community supervision violation.

TINA SZCZEPANEK, Fort Bragg. Failure to appear.

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An attack on the very effective but controversial wildlife services program by Camiila Fox, CEO of Project Coyote, and the numerous “POLITICALLY DRIVEN SPECIAL INTEREST groups” is the most recent strong-arm attempt to kill jobs and industry in the county of Mendocino, and leave residents in the wild and rugged mountains of Mendocino County without the ability to protect their beef, lamb, and other staple income streams and livelihood. The details of the lawsuit appear to have been overlooked by Mr. Anderson and the AVA.

First off Project Coyote and their deep pocket defenders and the rest of the Animal Rights groups have forgotten one important thing in their attempt to “kill” people’s rights. The wildlife preservation law of 1947 fish and game code 1301. mandates that “the preservation, protection of wildlife within the state is an inseparable part of providing adequate recreation for our people in the interest of public welfare; and it is the policy of the state to acquire and restore to the highest possible level, and maintain in a state of high productivity, those areas that can be most successfully used to sustain wildlife and which will provide adequate and suitable recreation. To carry out these purposes, a single and coordinated program for the acquisition of lands and facilities suitable for recreational purposes, and adaptable for conservation, propagation, and utilization of the fish and game resources of the state is established.

THAT’S PUBLIC FOLKS!!!! NOT FOR A SPECIAL INTEREST GROUP who sue other people to get their way. But for the public as a whole. Money and votes should not play a part in strong arming other public. Project Coyote and the deep pockets of the often deceptive animal rights groups are trying to get Mendocino County to drop their contract with USDA Wildlife Services. Their goal is to have it replaced with the Marin County Livestock protection program of Marin County,” (which is 828 sq. miles of gentle rolling hills) not at all the rugged terrain of Mendocino County. This program helps pay for the costs of Guard Dogs, food, fencing, That is it!

Mendocino County which is 3,878 sq miles of extremely rugged steep terrain, which are home to the highest populations of black bear and lions in the state, not to mention feral dogs. Also adding to the problems of the fantasy notion of strictly non-lethal methods are non-native invasive feral hogs, and coyotes, which appeared in the late 1800s.

The USDA program serves all county residents, not just the ranching community. Their service is available to all residents. These services include a meager two specialists for all that land that have 80 years of combined experience in mitigating wildlife and human conflicts. Hardly an army set out to kill all the wildlife in Mendocino County as Fox EXAGGERATES AND purports. The fact is they are as taxed as the rest of the services in the area. These services agents are on call 24 hours, and work for the large rancher, as well as the little farm or property that have conflicts in urban areas. They deal with human health and safety, to livestock depredation, also expertise in disease control, something project coyote neglects to admit or has an answer to themselves. This program is a very reasonably budgeted cost which perform a seriously valuable asset to the community, could you imagine leaving rabies decisions to an urban grandmother to deal with? USDA also provides hundreds of non-lethal technical assistance calls on wildlife conflicts. An average year results in two-thirds of their work is coyote, and feral swine. Which are both non-native. Mendocino County have hundreds of beef, and sheep ranchers, many of which have tens of thousands of acres, also several thousand hobby farms, and homesteads that grow food and have livestock. USDA programs have been implemented since 1860.

In response to the lawsuit, a conference held at the 5,000 acre Hopland Research Center on Dec of 2015. Camilla Fox was scheduled to present her miraculous non- lethal methods, and show the hillbillies of Mendocino County how it all works. However she cancelled her debut to perform her noisemakers, chemical repellants, flashing lights, and guard dogs and didn’t even show up. The conference was attended anyway, and was graced with the real experts such as Bobb Timm, John Harper, who were asked after the most world renown experts in the field all over the united states who have studied these topics ad nauseum if he could tell us what the non-lethal silver bullet solution is, Timm replied, “POLITICS.”

All of the experts agreed that non-lethal methods do not work all of the time, and lethal control is often needed due to the keen intrinsic adaptability of predators. They figure out the non-lethal methods don’t pose a threat. The US Farm AG Advisor from Marin County and the largest sheep rancher in Marin agreed Marin County Livestock Protection Program is a political program and a complete failure. The only predators they encounter are coyotes. The experts also agreed without professional wildlife service’s experts, people will resort to remedies that will result in poisons, and methods that are dangerous to environment and neighbor’s animals and safety. These experts include Ca. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, USDA, National Wildlife research Center from Fort Collins, Colorado. Robert Timm The world renown coyote expert from Hopland, and Wildlife Services USDA. I was personally impressed with the 5 member unanimous decision by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors. They showed a command knowledge of the real issues at hand, and were able to read through the SPECIAL INTEREST DRIVEN SHAM OF project Coyote, and how they claimed to desire to help us see the “flashing light of reason” but in reality when Fox was given the opportunity she did not show at Hopland. This is special interest politics and lethal to good community and jobs.

Paul Trouette

Mendocino County Black Tail Association


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Rip van Walmart
Rip van Walmart

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As long as I’m one of those with the skills and social connections to keep my head above water, I think the world’s fine. There’s no reason for me to see a bigger picture. Like this one:

— Half of Americans make less than $30K per year and cannot raise a few hundred dollars for a car repair.

— Food prices and child hunger are through the roof.

— Both political parties seem discredited and dysfunctional.

— The entire Middle East has turned into a war zone and we’re at the verge of direct military confrontation with Russia, courtesy of a Saudi/Iranian war.

My credit rating is 839, I have 20K in cash savings and more than a quarter million in stocks, and I make 6-figures. No reason to think America is anything other than a land of limitless prosperity. Just ignore the fact that I’m lucky and turn a blind eye to most people’s predicament.

To Which Sticks Answers,

Lose the 6-figure job and watch how fast $20K evaporates. The quarter mil in stocks is a mirage and you’ll be living on its after-tax remnants when the bank cash is gone. The credit rating quickly adjusts to the new reality. Life is precarious. —Sticks

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Filmmakers behind the 10-episode Netflix documentary series Making a Murderer said Tuesday that a juror who served in the subject's 2005 murder case believes he was framed by law enforcement. Steven Avery, who is serving a life sentence following a murder conviction in Wisconsin, has now received about 240,000 signatures in online petitions calling for his pardon. Filmmakers Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos said the juror believes Avery was innocent: "They believe Steven was framed by law enforcement and that he deserves a new trial, and if he receives a new trial, in their opinion it should take place far away from Wisconsin." The juror also told them that the verdicts on each count were "a compromise." The case's prosecutor Ken Kratz also spoke out, telling The New York Times that viewers who believe that Avery is innocent did not see all of the evidence that led a jury to convict him. Kratz alleged the filmmakers intentionally withheld facts that led those who binge-watched the show to believe he was innocent.


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The year is 2020 and the United States has elected the first woman as well is the first Jewish president, Susan Goldstein. She calls up her mother a few weeks after Election Day and says, "So, Mom, I assume you'll be coming to my inauguration?"

"I don't think so. It's a ten hour drive, your father isn't as young as he used to be, and my arthritis is acting up again."

"Don't worry about it Mom, I'll send Air Force One to pick you up and take you home. And a limousine will pick you up at your door."

"I don't know. Everybody will be so fancy-schmantzy, what on earth would I wear?"

Susan replies, "I'll make sure you have a wonderful gown custom-made by the best designer in New York."

"Honey," Mom complains, "you know I can't eat those rich foods you and your friends like to eat."

The President-to-be responds, "Don't worry Mom. The entire affair is going to be handled by the best caterer in New York; kosher all the way. Mom, I really want you to come."

So Mom reluctantly agrees and on January 20, 2021, Susan Goldstein is being sworn in as President of the United States. In the front row sits the new President's mother, who leans over to a senator sitting next to her and says, "You see that woman over there with her hand on the Torah, becoming President of the United States?"

The Senator whispers back, "Yes, I do."

Mom says proudly, "Her brother's a doctor."

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Giuseppe excitedly tells his mother he's fallen in love and that he is going to get married. He says, "Just for fun, Mama, I'm going to bring over three women and you try and guess which one I'm going to marry." The mother agrees. The next day, he brings three beautiful women into the house, sits them down on the couch and they chat for a while. He then says, "Okay, Mama, guess which one I'm going to marry?"

Mama says immediately, "The one on the right."

"That's amazing, Mama. You're right. How did you know?"

Mama replies: "I don't like her."

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I was reading an article last night about fathers and sons, and memories came flooding back of the time I took my son out for his first drink. Off we went to our local bar, which is only two blocks from the house. I got him a Guinness Stout. He didn't like it — so I drank it. Then I got him an Old Style, he didn't like it either, so I drank it. It was the same with the Coors and the Bud. By the time we got down to the Irish whiskey, I could hardly push the stroller back home.

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My son Ryder found a message in a bottle at Jughandle on New Year's Eve from 1988!! We're hoping to track down its writer, Chris from Sacramento... See the story that was on the news tonight and help us #findchris !

Wishing everyone a healthy, happy and blessed New Year!

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I am an outsider. I live in Roselle, NJ where we do not have a quality local newspaper like The Anderson Valley Advertiser. We have no local newspapers anymore.

The Village Voice, a New York City alternative newspaper used to cover the NYC metropolitan area. It featured Nat Hentoff, Alexander Cockburn, Tom Robbins, and many others. The newspaper’s demise was accelerated when it was purchased by Rupert Murdoch.

So I have adopted the AVA. Not much news about Roselle, New Jersey, or the NYC metropolitan area, but it’s a good read. Mendocino County Today’s summary of the top stories of 2015 was fascinating. So was the piece by John Borowski about the Bundy fiasco. The article by Manuel Vicent is excellent, but I translated it and sent it in so my opinion may be biased.

The responses have been disheartening: nine dreadful videos and one comment about Bundy from a victim of Alzheimer's Disease whose rants about little houses, Ayn Rand, The State of Jefferson, or Judaism are seldom coherent and always tedious.

I’ve never liked having OPM imposed on me whether in elevators, supermarkets (especially during the Christian holidays), or in doctors’ offices. If I want listen to videos, I can go to YouTube.

You don’t know how lucky you are to have a community newspaper like the AVA. And your comments no manner how daft, stupid, or irrelevant-—like the damned videos, or mean-spirited--like mine, are uncensored.

As I say, I’m an outsider. Who cares what I think?

It saddens me, nevertheless, to see good work ignored.

What did the mythical Gospel of Matthew say about pearls and swine? Maybe the AVA should move to Greenwich Village or Roselle.

PS. I have a large basement. If you decide to move here, I'll put in a printing press. Must warn you: the weather sucks.

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Alan Haack wrote: “I like what Michael Pollen says about food choices: Eat foods that your grandmother would recognize. :-)”

Food I remember my grandmother and grandfather fed me in the late 1950s and early 1960s, when I was a little boy: Frozen blueberries in syrup. White-sugar-on-white-bread sandwiches. Spumoni. Handsful of thinly sliced pepperoni. Red-dyed pistachios. Sunny-side-up eggs cooked in saved bacon grease. Bacon. All the hard old sourdough bread I wanted. Also, of course, the entire Italian restaurant menu. Dinner always started with iceberg lettuce salad (oil, vinegar, garlic and thick black pepper for dressing). (And canned olives, of course.) Soup. Lasagne, spaghetti in meat sauce, giant meatballs, tortellini, ravioli. Chewy toasted pizza of white dough my grandfather made -- thin crust, dripping with sauce and lots of cheese. Pastrami sandwiches, meat fried on a flat grill next to the French bread. Walnut-sugar-paste rolled up bread (slices had a sweet spiral in them). Squash-blossom fritters in powdered sugar. Pie. Leftover coffee from the restaurant's aluminum five-gallon electric urn. Little silver-dollar-size pancakes with liquid butter and even more powdered sugar.

A couple of months ago I read that fresh unprocessed corn has nearly zero nutrition. You have to treat it with (mineral) lime to get anything good from it besides calories. Most of it just goes right through you and comes out the other end. Vitamin-and-mineral-enriched food products that last for months on the shelf, that you bring to life with boiling water and spices and sauces, are a good thing. Iodized salt. Of course if you only eat cookies and cake you won't do well, but who does that? A little bit of everything delightful -- that's living. Eating only raw weeds in season -- is that living? No, and neither is it healthy. That's what I think.

Marco McClean

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by Jeffrey St. Clair & James Ridgeway

During the spring of 1995, shortly after the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, James Ridgeway and I spent a couple of weeks traveling across the West for a series of stories in the Village Voice that chronicled the rise of militant new rightwing movements of militias, white supremacists, Christian Identity sects and anti-government groups, including a profile of central Oregon rancher Dwight Hammond, now at the center of the armed seizure of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters near Burns.

In the early 1990s, Hammond repeatedly transgressed federal environmental laws, trespassed on federal lands and hurled death threats at federal wildlife officials. Little action was taken against Hammond by a timid Clinton administration. Emboldened, Hammond and some of his fellow ranchers continued over the next two decades to flagrantly flout environmental laws and harass federal officials. These activities finally culminated in an act of poaching on Steens Mountain and two arson fires. Hammond and his son were convicted in federal court and sentenced to five years in prison. That conviction sparked the armed takeover of federal buildings now unfolding in Burns. Here is our report from 1995. — JSC


In the high desert of central Oregon, lies Harney County, a site of a long-festering and intense confrontation between federal officials and the militant property rights movement. Here federal Fish and Wildlife Service agents sought to fence off a wetland that had been trampled by a rancher’s cows on the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge about thirty miles south of the dust-caked town of Burns.

In an affidavit, Earl M. Kisler, a Fish and Wildlife Service enforcement officer, said that rancher Dwight Hammond had repeatedly threatened refuge officials with violence over an eight year period. On one occasion Hammond told the manager of the federal refuge that “he was going to tear his head off and shit down his neck.”

According to the affidavit, Hammond threated to kill refuge manager Forrest Cameron and assistant manager Dan Walsworth and claimed he was ready to die over a fence line that the refuge wanted to construct to keep his cows out of a marsh and wetland.

The tensions between the Hammond family and the government started when the refuge, which was established as a haven for migrating birds, refused to renew a grazing permit for Hammond’s cattle operation. Then came the incident over the wetland, which Hammond had been using as a water hole for his cows.

On August 3, 1994, a Fish and Wildlife Service crew turned up to complete the task of fencing off the marsh. They found the fence destroyed and a monkey-wrenched earthmover parked in the middle of the marsh. While the feds were waiting on a towing service to remove the Cat, Hammond’s son Steve showed up and began calling the government men “worthless cocksuckers” and “assholes.” Hammond then arrived at the scene, according to the government’s documents, and tried to disrupt the removal of the equipment. The rancher was arrested.

Susan Hammond said nine federal agents, five of them armed, took her husband into custody. “There five guns there, at least five guns there, and not one of them belonged to us,” she said. “We have been sitting and stewing and trying to figure something out. Trying to find out how something like this could happen in America.”

After Hammond’s arrest, Chuck Cushman of the American Land Rights Association, and a key organizer for the property rights movement in the West, said he helped stage a demonstration in Hammond’s defense in Burns. Refuge manager Cameron’s daughter attended the meeting. “She got up at our meeting,” Cushman told me. “She said she was tired of people vilifying her father. And I thought it was just wonderful. I got up and applauded her. She had the guts to do it. Too bad he didn’t have the guts to do the same thing.”

It was after that fateful gathering, while Cameron himself was 300 miles away in Portland completing the paperwork on Hammond’s arrest, that his family began receiving more threats, including one call threatening to wrap the Camerons’ 12-year-old boy in a shroud of barbed wire and stuff him down a well. Other callers warned Mrs. Cameron that if she couldn’t get along in the cow town, she ought to move out before something “bad” happened to her family. The families of three other refuge employees also received telephone threats after the meeting. Terrified, Mrs. Cameron packed up her four children, one of them confined to a wheelchair, and fled to Bend, more than 100 miles to the west.

Cushman later acknowledged that he may have “unintentionally” been a cause of these threats. Angered at the way the feds had arrested Hammond, the property rights organizer told me: “I went to the phone book and I picked out the names of all these guys and I wrote their phone numbers down. And I printed a sheet which I handed out to all the ranchers. ‘Here are the names of the guys who went on that property. What I want you to do is everywhere these guys go in the community, when they go to the grocery store, when they go to the barbershop, look ‘em right in the eye and tell them: You’re not being a good neighbor. You’re not being friendly.’”

But, Cushman claimed, he also told Hammond’s supporters: “Do not harass these people. I said it right at the meeting and I said it in the document. If Cameron’s right, some people used that document and phoned them and made threats. I am very sorry that happened.”

Cushman nevertheless remained committed to keeping the pressure on federal wildlife agents. “I will make them responsible. Their names — no matter where they go or where they work — those people will know when they get there who they have to deal with. They will be a pariah for the rest of their lives. So the next time they will go to the county sheriff if they want to arrest a man and not the federal cops. They will take him to a local jail. They will not put the man in leg irons. They won’t treat them like vicious criminals.”

A year passed since Hammond’s arrest. The rancher and his son both denied the government’s charges. No trial had taken place. In fact, after some rather questionable contacts between former Oregon congressman Bob Smith (a Republican) and the Clinton Justice Department, the government inexplicably reduced its original felony charges to misdemeanors.

“This whole thing has gone on longer than the O.J. trial,” Cameron told me. “But this case won’t resolve anything. There’s something deeper going on here, associated with the county movement. Until that’s resolved our position is going to remain pretty much the same.”

While the case was pending, Cameron and the other three employees at the wildlife refuge continued to be on the receiving end of threats from local ranchers and their allies. Shops in Burns began displaying signs warning, “This establishment doesn’t serve federal employees.” Two Harney County commissioners were recalled by voters angry that the county didn’t intervene against the wildlife refuge managers on behalf of the Hammonds and because the commissioners didn’t put the county supremacy ordinance up for a vote.

“We had an equally strange situation on the west side of the refuge,” said refuge manager Forest Cameron. “It was a place where cows would wander down off of BLM lands and onto the road at night. We’d had quite a few cow and car collisions. So we decided to put up a fence. You can’t just let cows lie down to sleep in the middle of a public highway in the middle of the night. That’s got to change. And there was fierce resistance to it, even though we worked closely with a lot of the local ranchers, relocated their corrals and the like. So we put up five miles of fence and then one night somebody hotwired one of the BLM backhoes and knocked down every foot of fence, tore up every fence post and demolished the backhoe. The point is that the harassment and intimidation continues in an open and confrontational way. In fact, it is branching out. Many of us feel that the legal process hasn’t moved swiftly or aggressively enough. We’ve been hanging in a kind of limbo. Maybe things will eventually work out. But right now all of us live in a state of anxiety. And you really worry about your kids.”

As for being a federal wildlife official in the West these days, Cameron chuckled darkly and said, “Well, it’s about learning to keep your head down.”

A version of this article originally appeared in the Village Voice.

(Jeffrey St. Clair is editor of CounterPunch and author of Born Under a Bad Sky. James Ridgeway is a journalist living in Washington, DC. Courtesy,

* * *


Critics of Western intervention in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya lament the deaths of civilians, the eruption of previously contained sectarian or tribal conflicts, and the provocation of terrorist attacks on the interveners’ home countries. Less talked about is a fourth unpleasant consequence — more interventions. For all the concern at the spread of Salafist ideology around the world, there is surprisingly little concern at the spread of interventionist ideology — the creed that country A is entitled to take military action against, or within, country B, without the consent of the government of country B (if it has one) or any evidence that it poses a threat to country A.

Such overt interventions — that is, not through proxies — happened many times between the United Nations being set up and the end of the Cold War. Britain and France intervened in Egypt, the USSR intervened in Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan, the US intervened in Grenada. But the pivotal intervention was Iraq. What we are beginning to see is how the US and Britain’s invasion of that country not only seemed to other countries to legitimize their own interventions, but has inspired a set of newly prosperous countries to acquire and use the interveners’ tools. Since 2003, we have seen Russian military intervention in Georgia and Ukraine; we have seen Saudi intervention in Yemen, with airstrikes galore. In August last year, the United Arab Emirates seemed to surprise the United States by using the fancy fighters and airborne refueling aircraft it had bought from Western countries to fly thousands of miles and, with Egypt’s help, bomb Libya. As Cameron was mustering support for his Syria bombing vote, China announced it was setting up its first overseas military base, in Djibouti, close to the American base that flies drones to Somalia and Yemen.

In the long term, heavily armed, interventionist-minded states rubbing up against one another are a greater danger than scattered bands of intolerant dreamers performing sporadic acts of terror. In the short term, strong states are the answer to IS. Not states that demonstrate their strength by bombing Syria, but states that demonstrate their strength by guiding their clients within Syria towards a suspension of fighting as a prelude to peace. In the case of the Iranians and the Russians, the clients are Assad and his cronies and the Alawites and Christians of the coast. In the case of the Americans, they are the Kurds. In the case of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan and Turkey, as well as the US, which also plays this angle, the clients are scores of Sunni Syrian rebel groups which are too busy fighting Assad to turn their attention to the IS co-religionists in their rear. It’s a mess — not necessarily a hopeless one.

But until the Saudis and the Turks can agree a way to get their Sunni clients (many sponsored privately) to declare a ceasefire with Assad and his allies, organize themselves politically and launch a concerted assault on IS, whatever caliphate exists need not fear the combined destructive effect of foreign air power and local ground troops.

The strangest aspect of Cameron’s pitch was that he clearly knows all this. He stresses the limits to air power, but his case is riddled with contradictions. He argues, simultaneously, that IS can’t be defeated without a political settlement; that a political settlement is on the way; and that Britain can’t wait for a political settlement before it starts military action. He argues, simultaneously, that what Syrian Sunnis most want is for Assad to fall; that Sunni support for Britain’s position is essential; and that toppling Assad is a lesser priority for Britain than attacking IS. He argues, simultaneously, that ‘destroying Isil helps the moderate forces’ [sic] and that the destruction of IS can’t be brought about without moderate forces — an army, he maintains, made up of 70,000 opposition fighters ‘who do not belong to extremist groups’.

Cameron’s claim that an army of 70,000 moderate Syrian rebels is available to turn its attention from Assad to IS was startling. Soon after the prime minister’s statement, Charles Lister, a conflict analyst at the Doha branch of the Brookings Institution think tank who specializes in the Syrian civil war, put up a guest post on the Spectator’s website, headed ‘Yes, there are 70,000 moderate opposition fighters in Syria.’ Cameron’s estimate, Lister said, came from the Joint Intelligence Committee, but it chimed with his own work. He put the figure higher, at 75,000, spread out across more than a hundred different factions, many of them already vetted by the CIA and reckoned non-Islamist enough to be given US weaponry (including the TOW anti-tank missile, the weapon whose effectiveness partly triggered Assad’s plea for Russian support). But Lister pointed out that, besides them, there were another 27,500 fighters in two ‘supergroups’, Jaish al-Islam and Ahrar al-Sham, which were anti-Assad, anti-IS, unacceptably Islamist to the Americans, and too powerful to be left out of peace talks.

Still, it sounded quite positive for Cameron. Until I contacted Lister. It turned out he wanted to step back from the use of the word ‘moderate’, preferring ‘mainstream’ — ‘mainstream’ in local Syrian terms, in other words, which could, from the point of view of Notting Hill, be very Islamically conservative indeed. Western rebel-counters, he said, required only two things of a mainstream rebel — that they be anti-IS, and that they had a role in a peace settlement. Which leaves a lot of room for enthusiasts of beheadings and Salafist mischief overseas; and which explains the Joint Intelligence Committee’s coyness about the breakdown of the prime minister’s 70,000 figure. One MP, Louise Haigh, interpreted a briefing from Mark Lyall Grant, the cabinet’s national security adviser, as government acceptance that 30,000 of the 70,000 were radical Islamists. Others at the briefing disputed her take, but the government has yet to offer a clear account of who the 70,000 are.

It got worse. ‘Almost none of these groups will be dropping their fight against the Assad regime any time soon,’ Lister said.

Fighting Assad, Iran and now Russia is their foremost priority. Isis comes second … This makes some of the PM’s claims highly questionable within existing dynamics. It is only the socially rooted, largely Sunni mainstream opposition that has the true potential to defeat Isis in Syria. But they will not realize that potential with the Assad regime in power. That’s where the British ‘Isis first strategy’ falls apart.

In an analysis in October, Jennifer Cafarella and Genevieve Casagrande of another US think tank, the Institute for the Study of War, were more pessimistic still. They tracked the way Russian intervention in Syria had obliged many Syrian rebels — they listed 228 separate factions — to cut deals or make alliances with the Syrian al-Qaida affiliate, Jabhat al-Nusra. Their report described al-Nusra as ‘one of the most capable groups on the battlefield’, and characterized Ahrar al-Sham as its ally. ‘I am not arguing … that all of the 70,000 are somehow ideal partners,’ Cameron said before the vote. Indeed.

It was good to hear Corbyn remind Parliament of the terrible cost of the Syrian civil war as a whole — 250,000 dead, 11 million homeless, four million refugees — and reassuring to hear acceptance from a man with supporters who back the Assad-Russian-Iranian alliance that ‘many more have been killed by the Assad regime than by Isil itself.’ One of the worst things about the Syrian crisis — as in Iraq — is that all policy roads seem to end with a choice between different styles of brutality and authoritarianism. Would you rather have the intolerance of Tehran, or Hezbollah, or Putin, or Assad, or IS, or Riyadh? Cameron dropped a hint as to the way things are going to go when he said, ‘We wanted Assad to go instantly and [the Russians] wanted him to stay, potentially forever. That gap has narrowed, and I think that it will narrow further as the vital talks in Vienna get under way.’

In other words, the US and Europe are moving towards acceptance of a transition period with Assad remaining in power. But any hint of an anti-IS concord between the Assad regime, the Russians and Iranians and the West is likely to drive more Sunnis towards radical Islamists, whether that is IS or the al-Nusra front, and put Turkey and the struggling Saudi kingdom in a difficult position. If things look bad now, they will look worse in twelve months time if the RAF is seen as part of a Shia-Western war against the Sunni of Syria and Iraq.

Cameron’s original case for war came as a response to a report by the Commons Foreign Affairs Select Committee. After hearing a series of witnesses, including a number of Syrians, the committee, made up of six Conservative, four Labour and one Scottish Nationalist MP, was unequivocal: we should not bomb. By the time the vote came round, some had changed their minds. One who had not was the Tory John Baron, a decorated former army officer with a record of opposing British intervention in Iraq, Helmand and Libya (although not in Afghanistan in 2001). ‘Even if we believed the 70,000 figure, even if we believed they were all moderates, what the strategy does not address is this: once these moderates have somehow been told miraculously to swing round, stop fighting Assad and take on Daesh, what is stopping them splintering into a hundred or even a thousand militias, as we saw in Libya?’ he asked. ‘We are struggling to defeat Daesh in Iraq, and that is with 800,000 or 900,000 — estimates vary — security forces on our payroll.’ Baron felt the need to lay out his CV during his speech to prove his non-pacifist credentials. In the 1980s, he was a platoon commander in Northern Ireland, a conflict in which, despite heavy casualties among service people and civilians, the British government didn’t carry out air strikes.

Of course they didn’t! But why ‘of course’? Something was somehow obvious in Ulster that is not obvious in Syria. What is it? In 2009, two former US officers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, David Kilcullen and Andrew Exum, wrote an op-ed for the New York Times on the folly of America’s drone war against al-Qaida. It makes interesting reading in the context of the Syria vote. ‘Governments typically make several mistakes when attempting to separate violent extremists from populations in which they hide,’ they wrote.

First, they often overestimate the degree to which a population harboring an armed actor can influence that actor’s behavior. People don’t tolerate extremists in their midst because they like them, but rather because the extremists intimidate them. Breaking the power of extremists means removing their power to intimidate — something that strikes cannot do. Imagine, for example, that burglars move into a neighborhood. If the police were to start blowing up people’s houses from the air, would this convince homeowners to rise up against the burglars? Wouldn’t it be more likely to turn the whole population against the police? And if their neighbors wanted to turn the burglars in, how would they do that, exactly? Yet this is the same basic logic underlying the drone war.

(James Meeks. Courtesy, the London Review of Books)

* * *


by Dan Bacher

Fish species ranging from endangered Delta Smelt to Striped Bass continued to plummet to record low population levels in 2015, according to the annual fall survey report released on December 18 by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW).

Only 6 Delta smelt, an endangered species that was once numbered in the millions and was the abundant fish in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, were collected at the index stations in the estuary this fall. The 2015 index (7), a relative number of abundance, “is the lowest in history,” said Sara Finstad, an environmental scientist for the CDFW’s Bay Delta Region.

The Delta Smelt, a 2 to 3 inch fish found only in the San Francisco Bay-Delta Estuary, is an indicator species that demonstrates the health of the Delta, an estuary that has been dramatically impacted by water exports to corporate agribusiness interests and Southern California water agencies during the record drought, along with other factors including increasing water toxicity and invasive species.

The Fall Midwater Trawl Survey, used to index the fall abundance of pelagic (open water) fishes most years since 1967, conducts monthly surveys from September through December. The 2015 sampling season was completed on December 11.

“In September, the only Delta Smelt collected were from index stations in the lower Sacramento River,” said Finstad. “In October the only Delta smelt collected came from a non-index station in the Sacramento Deep Water Shipping Channel.”

In November, no Delta Smelt were collected - and in December, the only Delta Smelt collected were from index stations in Montezuma Slough and the lower Sacramento River, according to Finstad.

The population of striped bass, a popular gamefish, has also declined to record low levels. The 2015 abundance index (52) is the second lowest in history. Only 42 age 0 striped bass were conducted at the survey stations, noted Finstad.

Likewise, Longfin Smelt, a cousin of the Delta Smelt, declined to the lowest abundance index (4) in the history of the survey. Only 3 longfin smelt were collected at the index stations throughout the three-month period.

The abundance index (806) for Threadfin Shad, an introduced species from the East Coast that provides forage for larger fish, reached its eighth lowest level in survey history. The biologists collected 634 Threadfin Shad at the index stations.

Finally, the 2015 abundance index (79) for American Shad, a relative of the Threadfin Shad that is pursued by anglers on Central Valley rivers every spring, is the lowest in history of the survey. Only 59 American shad were collected at the index stations.

Bill Jennings, Executive Director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance (CSPA), said the fall survey shows the “continuing collapse of the estuary caused by the failure of the state and federal regulatory agencies to comply with the law.”

“Every survey conducted, including the 20 mm Delta Smelt, spring Kodiak trawl, summer tow net, and the fall midwater trawl surveys, shows record low levels of the fish surveyed,” said Jennings.

He emphasized that in spite of the continuing record drought conditions, that water exports south of the Delta through the state and federal pumping facilities averaged 7500 cubic feet per second (cfs) over the past week. “The State Water Project pumps are averaging 5154 cfs, while the Central Valley Project Pumps are averaging 2360 cfs,” said Jennings.

As fish populations continue to collapse, the California Department of Water Resources and Bureau of Reclamation are going forward with permit applications to the State Water Resources Control Board to change the point of diversion on the Sacramento River to implement Governor Jerry Brown’s Delta Tunnels Plan, the so-called “California Water Fix.”

Jennings and other public trust advocates point to these latest fish survey results — and the state and federal water agencies’ permit applications to divert more water from the Sacramento River at new diversion points — as just more evidence of the “capture of the regulators by the regulated.”

The current collapse of Delta fish species occurs as part of a long-term decline. The operation of the state and federal water projects by the California Department of Water Resources and Bureau of Reclamation Reclamation has brought fisheries to historic lows.

Since 1967, abundance indices for striped bass, Delta smelt, longfin smelt, American shad, splittail and threadfin shad have declined by 99.7, 97.8, 99.9, 91.9, 98.5 and 97.8%, respectively. according to Jennings.

The natural production of Sacramento winter-run and spring-run Chinook salmon has declined by 98.2 and 99.3%, respectively, and are only at 5.5 and 1.2 percent of doubling levels mandated by the Central Valley Project Improvement Act, California Water Code and California Fish & Game Code. To make matters even worse, over 95 percent of endangered juvenile winter-run Chinook salmon perished in lethally warm water conditions on the upper section of the Sacramento River in 2014 and 2015, due to mismanagement by the state and federal water agencies.

* * *


* * *


From: "Roxanne Golnar (Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens)

The first workshops of the year is coming up fast at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, call The Garden Store and sign up TODAY!

Fruit Tree Pruning 101

Saturday, January 16 - 10 am to 12 noon

MCBG Gardens Meeting Room with Di Scott

When it comes to basic care and pruning of fruit trees, there are many different techniques, several of which have predictable results. This class will help you to optimize performance from your fruit trees, according to your own needs and the specific environment in which the trees are growing. The spotlight will primarily be on, but not limited too, the pruning of fruit tree varieties appropriate to the North Coast climate,specifically apples, pears, and select stone fruits. Learn how time of year and type of pruning cut can greatly influence the success of your fruit trees. We will cover a complete year’s cycle of tree growth — from the tree’s perspective as well as our own. Di Scott brings 17 years of coastal orchard experience and a lifetime of horticultural knowledge to this class. Classes are $10 MCBG members and Master Gardeners; $20 non-members Includes Gardens admission for the day! Class size is limited; please reserve your spot by phoning 707 964-4352 ext. 16 or in person at The Garden Store at MCBG.

Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens
18220 North Highway 1. Fort Bragg
707-964-4352 Ext 16.

* * *

AGR. 41 MUSHROOM IDENTIFICATION Mendocino college at the Fort Bragg Campus Spring 2016

Four afternoons only: 01/28/2016-02/18/2016 Lecture Thursday 12:00PM - 03:50PM, Fort Bragg Mendocino Coast, Room 120

This course is an introduction to the local mushroom flora. This class will include field trips to local mushroom hot spots along with time spent in the lab learning the basic techniques of mushroom identification. Special time will be devoted to edible species and their toxic look-alikes. Students will also be encouraged to bring specimens from home for identification.

Professor: Teresa Sholars email:

* * *


January 16 — March 17, 2016

Artists’ Reception Saturday, January 16 from 5-7:30pm

“Inquiry” is the first exhibit of 2016 at Cloverdale Arts Alliance Gallery, starting a year of exciting exhibits featuring resident and guest artists from the North Bay Area. Resident Artist featured for “Inquiry” is Sharon Kozel. All Resident Artists, including Laura Paine Carr, Pamela Heck, Terry Holleman, Drew Jackson, Paul Maurer and Hanya Popova Parker will be presenting new work as well. Guest Artists, Mary Linnea Vaughan, Wayne Husted and Ann Frowick exhibit new, eclectic and colorful work representing glass, sculpture and Eco Abstract painting. The exhibit, “Inquiry,” runs from January 16, 2016 through March 17, with the Opening Artists' Reception on Saturday, January 16, from 5 to 7:30 pm.

For more information visit or call (707) 894-4410.

* * *


SFCWC Judging Takes Place This Week (1/5-1/8)

The 2016 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition has started off today with judges heading over to Cloverdale Citrus Fairgrounds to judge 7,162 wines entered from across the country. This has been the largest amount of wines entered to date and the event has become a Goliath in its industry.

Diego Jimenez, San Francisco




  1. Rick Weddle January 6, 2016

    The rapid rise of ‘intervention/terrorism/more intervention/more terrorism is motivated by one thing: that’s where the money is. Ask Exxon. Ask Boeing. Ask Halliburton. Ask Lockheed. There are many highly-rewarded experts who can verify this.

  2. Jeff Costello January 6, 2016

    Can we see more about Dave Severn’s “shitless” dog? This could be a genuine miracle, could it not?

  3. BB Grace January 6, 2016


    Though LB is a much lighterweight version when it comes to “mean spirit”, what I like the most about LB is how much he reminds me of my Dad.

  4. LouisBedrock January 6, 2016

    Ha, ha!
    I confess, BB, you made me laugh my ass off.

    I am indeed a rank amateur at meanness when compared to my hero, H.L. Mencken:

    Mencken and The Scopes Trial:

    Mencken looked forward to his Dayton assignment as a chance to bash some of the things he hated most — the South, religion, and stupidity. According to historian Paul Boyer, “Beneath Mencken’s ridicule of the ignorant hayseeds of America was a very profound suspicion of Democracy itself. Mencken really believed that there was a small elite of educated and cultivated and intelligent human beings, and then there were the masses who were really ignorant and capable of nothing but being led and bamboozled.”

    A mob almost lynched him after he called the people of Dayton “yokels,” “primates,” morons,” and “hillbillies.” But Mencken saved his most potent venom for William Jennings Bryan.

    “It is a tragedy, indeed,” he wrote, “to begin life as a hero and to end it as a buffoon. But let no one, laughing at him, underestimate the magic that lies in his black, malignant eye, his frayed but still eloquent voice. He can shake and inflame these poor ignoramuses as no other man among us can shake and inflame them, and he is desperately eager to order the charge.”

    When Bryan died in his sleep five days after the trial ended, Mencken remarked privately, “We killed the son of a bitch.” But his public reaction was that God had taken a thunderbolt and threw it down to kill Clarence Darrow but missed and hit Bryan instead.

    • BB Grace January 6, 2016

      To: LB

      Wiki offers this nugget on H. L. Menchen,

      “Mencken recommended for publication libertarian philosopher and author Ayn Rand’s first novel, We the Living, calling it “a really excellent piece of work.” Shortly after, Rand addressed him in correspondence as “the greatest representative of a philosophy” to which she wanted to dedicate her life, “individualism,” and, later, listed him as her favorite columnist.[19]”

    • james marmon January 6, 2016

      Afternoon 2 is messed up, but the morning and afternoon 1 are fine.

      • james marmon January 6, 2016

        I tried to post this music video in the comment section, but haven’t figured out quite how to do it. I’m wondering if it would be a violation of my restraining order the County has against me.

        Anyway, here was my message to them.

  5. james marmon January 6, 2016


    Found this very disturbing comment on Reform Mendocino County CPS facebook page. This guy is referring to comments made by one of the parents against Bryan Lowery, Director of Social Services. Read this below and tell me if you are as concerned about this guys statement as I am, What is his beliefs about mental illness and substance abuse? Now tell me that disturbed individuals like this guy and Bryan Lowery should be allowed around children themselves.

    “Bryan is a friend of mine. I find this rude. Love isn’t rude. What is your intention? To humiliate someone or fix an issue? He’s a very good man. He may need our help not rocks thrown threw his window. This should be illegal. I worked for Youth Project for years as crisis care worker. There were kids who needed out whether their nut job patieNts, no offense brothers, knew it or not. That’s my defense of a program I wish we didn’t need. But everyday people apparently got no problem hurting kids, neglecting kids, drugging kids, freaking their minds out with poisonous thoughts about reality, denying their education and social connections, casting their personality in their broken parents image and that’s just the start. You never know till some one calls on it. Then you still don’t know but you respond. It’s heart breaking. The child will cry and defend the thing they think is right but that don’t make it right or healthy. The alternative is not giving a shit about people n guess what? That ain’t gonna happen. Period. I care and I’ll come knock if I get a call and you’ll look me on the eye and tell me that baby’s safe and it will be safe or you don’t get one.”

    I believe it is my duty on earth to make people think. That’s it. They need to understand why they feel the way they do, and how their assumptions (beliefs) are leading to destructive behaviors. I’ve never talked about a parent like that in my life.

    This guy needs help.

    Now I put my professional cap on.

    James Marmon MSW

  6. LouisBedrock January 6, 2016

    Six straight posts from James Marmon, to James Marmon, about James Marmon.

    I never see any Marmon posts that respond to other people’s questions, problems, or interests.

    “Solipsism is sometimes expressed as the view that ‘I am the only mind which exists,'”

    • Stephen Rosenthal January 6, 2016

      Add narcissism to that and I think we have an accurate profile.

      • james marmon January 6, 2016

        I’m using my I language, come on, that’s Communication 101.

    • Kimberly Ortwein January 6, 2016

      We say what can be proven on paper and in real life.

  7. Jim Updegraff January 6, 2016

    H. L. Mencken if he was still alive would enjoy writing about the Boobus Americanus who are running for President I also miss Mike Royko. He had a knack for making fun of elected officials.

    Re: James Marmon – I was overwhelmed a long time ago by the CPS problems in Mendo County. In CPS you are either damned for doing something or damned for not doing something

    In Sacto we just had a case of CPS placing a child with a relative that had 3 pit bulls. When the child was left alone the pit bulls mauled him to death.

  8. Sonya Nesch January 6, 2016

    I appreciate James Marmon and read all his posts. I’ve learned a lot from him about what happens to children and parents in this County. He has great courage and I appreciate his willingness to share his knowledge and experience. There is no one in County government right now to right the terrible wrongs done to children and adults. There are not 3 supervisor votes to change anything in HHSA. The AVA and other media are the only place to expose what County staff has done and continues to do. We hope through that to gain the third supervisor vote to end privatization of mental health services. Tom Pinizzotto, Mental Health Director who destroyed most all mental health services resigned today, thank God. Now if only Ortner will leave so we can begin to create supportive adult mental health services in our 8 communities.

    • Kimberly Ortwein January 6, 2016

      I agree. These people don’t lime dirty laundry aired in public. Hush hush hurry cover up is what they like. Oh well! Don’t do it if you can’t take the backlash for your stupidity. Keep going James!!!!

    • Kimberly Ortwein January 6, 2016

      Sonya look up reform Mendocino County cps on facebook that is why these people are cowards.

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