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Mendocino County Today: Thursday, Feb 18, 2016

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WarrenGallettiIT TOOK A WHILE for the Sheriff to re-set the booking log and start catching up on the missing days.

No sooner had he (and the vendor) done it than we noticed that back on February 12...

County School Superintendent (!) Warren Galletti now of Calpella, formerly of Point Arena, was booked after being arrested the day before for DUI in Ukiah.

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The Supervisor’s Meeting on the Kemper Report was disheartening when Supervisor Hamburg and Supervisor McCowen threw adult mental health patients and their families under the Ortner bus for the next many months. They want staff to write what amounts to a beginner’s instruction manual (new contract, Memos of Understanding language) for Ortner on how to carry out State Mandated Services that were listed in their original contract. In addition, Ortner wants instructions on HIPPA laws they do not understand. We’ve given them almost three years to perform contractual obligations and they can’t, because they never understood how to provide County Mental Health Services.

We have a local group with a successful track record of providing Mental Health Services. A wise solution would be to give them the Mental Health Patient money to expand services to adult patients. They have offices throughout the County and already do Crisis Services, Medical Outpatient, Residential, Day Programs and much more for people under 25. They hire excellent, qualified, competent staff, and licensed professionals when needed. Management has an Open Door Policy so when something goes wrong, the system can be fixed for everyone. Let Redwood Community Services replicate the relevant mental health services for adults and immediately begin to create the continuum of Crisis Care we desperately need.

Why engage in months of writing Kemper’s proposed documents, and wait months more to see if Ortner can finally perform what we know they can’t? This just prolongs the misery for mental health patients and their families. It’s also a waste of patient money that could be used by Redwood to create local residential facilities, Crisis Residential Treatment Centers, a psychiatric hospital and more, along with good jobs for local people.

Sonya Nesch, Comptche

Author, Advocating for Someone with a Mental Illness

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The attached pictures were taken Tuesday.  At noon a large number of cages still had feces, urine, intermingled with food on the floors. Supposedly three more attendants have been hired, but only one was working. The windows to the quarantine areas have been covered with paper. I can't help but wonder what is being hidden behind them. The new interim manager was not there.  Who supervises the attendants?  Who is in charge of scheduling them?  Especially on Tuesdays, after the animals have been confined for 48 hours in their kennels that are not cleaned on the days the shelter is closed to the public, it would make sense to have them all working.  I also think the manager should be at the shelter on Tuesdays to familiarize herself with new animals that came in over the weekend and to supervise the staff.


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Another bit of clarification regarding the facts brought to the Board on Tuesday, Feb. 16, by several speakers in regard to the Animal Shelter.

All dogs were walked and exercised on saturday, Feb 13 and Feb 16.

The overall tone and general feeling at the shelter has improved greatly since privileges have revoked for the volunteers in question. Those volunteers who do not want to get involved with the ongoing circus, and definitely all staff, feel less threatened, and the moral of all us who have been personally slandered on facebook is much better as we feel we can do our jobs without the very disruptive shenanigans hanging over our heads.

If things are not getting done at the shelter, it’s because staff has had to accommodate daily record and information requests from the "public" — I'll leave that to your imaginations — forcing hands-on staff into clerical work leaving them unable to perform their jobs.

I am confused if this is actually a subject the Board has control over, as the shelter staff's union is involved with the ongoing problem of staff intimidation.

I can say that as a community member having recently been targeted by the outsourcing group, I, personally, feel much safer and calmer going to the shelter knowing I will not be running into people who have delighted in ripping me apart in their facebook world. I finally understand how staff have felt the past three months, and I have gotten away easy from the tirades.

My husband takes professional photos of the shelter dogs two or three times a week, then spends the remainder of his week refining the photos to be the best images possible. These files are uploaded to two sites and are available to anyone who needs photos of dogs. There is not a dearth of photos as has been presented to you. In fact, another rumor had been started that we were not allowing photos to be used by a group of volunteers, something which is completely false, and a sign of the level of silliness and vindictiveness that continues to morph and grow at the shelter.

We are all expendable. The loss of a volunteer does not break the shelter. For several years, Nancy Commons and I were the only consistent volunteers at the shelter, and still, the number of monthly dog adoptions averaged in the mid-40s. Of course it’s nicer to have more volunteers, but only if they can find their place amongst many other volunteers and staff, and are willing to play well with others. When Nancy and I were the only volunteers, the shelter ran smoothly because we plus the staff all worked together, we always tried to maintain a respectful attitude, and no one was under the delusion that they could take control of the shelter's workings.

What I fear is more of the same at the shelter, more lawyers becoming involved, no strong direction from a crippled staff, and the further demoralization of the shelter's employees. I hope things can be figured out. I certainly hope the volunteers with revoked privileges will be told why their activities at the shelter have changed, and can understand that certain behaviors are unacceptable in any environment, working or social, that involves groups of people. I have always viewed my being able to volunteer at the shelter as a privilege, not an entitlement that means I have the right to take control, and turn every perceived problem and injustice into a negative campaign. I believe the social media environment is very responsible for a lot of the current problems at the shelter, as cliques of people cluster and any respectful dialogue disappears, replaced by juvenile verbal interaction with a bullying tone. I hope the people who continue to undermine the shelter on a daily basis will be given direction that will tell them its time to stop. And I hope we will be able to put together, with all stakeholders, a viable concept for improving the lives of our county's homeless pets during their stay with the shelter, without the necessity of tossing it off to an out of area vendor.

Kathy Shearn


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To the Editor:

The Mendocino County Library Advisory Board wishes to publicly thank the Board of Supervisors for their work in bettering the Library District. Last week the Board of Supervisors hired a new director, Karen Horner. Ms. Horner was quickly appointed as Interim Director after Wally Clark resigned in December. She also served as the Fort Bragg branch manager. The Board of Supervisors prompt and instinctive action has helped maintain library staff morale, dedication and function. Last week the Board of Supervisors announced that the County will credit the Library District approximately $100,000 for the improper assessment of A-87 user fees. This is very welcome news and the LAB applauds the work of Supervisors McCowen and Gjerde in their investigation and resolution of this matter. Now, more than ever, the Board of Supervisors and the Library Advisory Board are working in concert for the betterment of our libraries.

Marc Komer

Mendocino County Library Advisory Board, Chair

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COMMENT RE the HumCo upskirting perv: "Honestly this is just like teenage boys who put mirrors on their shoe tops when I was in junior high. Or like Reggae on the River some years. Pretty minor.

A lot of men are pervs. Most. And our society accepts it and promotes it. They dont admit it here especially as they know there are many empowered women.
 I’d be more worried if he was offering them drugs or something. 'Victimized' is a pretty strong word for this situation, especially compared to what’s going on these days. Almost all men look at some kind of porn and this is a lesser version of that; we are being filmed all the time, and being in public gives you no rights to not be filmed however someone decides. At least he’s just filming and not slipping roofies and raping. I know its not pleasant, but trust me there are waaaaaay worse things we women outta be protecting ourselves from. There is at least one man in Northern Humboldt practicing as a 'healer' throwing 'play parties' (play like a kid idea not an advertised sex party just to be clear) who is 43 & has admitted to hitting on & liking girls 18-22 after he hit on a 16 year old by bringing her flowers and chocolates to her work. She felt so uncomfortable she called her boss and her mom. Yes, he knew her age. His ex knew said teen since she was a little girl & he had been in said teen's work with his ex the day prior to the flowers. He has been called out. The biz owner where the teen works banned said dude from the biz, and yet dude is still “teaching” here. This getting young girls to be sexual by telling them you’re helping them heal has been rampant in the healing community for years, i.e., a certain massage school in Northern Humboldt. I can’t name names as I know Kym [Kemp] cant put out conjecture; let's just say I would recommend staying away from classes taught by men who write for the Isis Scrolls. This video dude ought to be watched to make sure his behavior doesn't escalate of course. It's never fun to have something done against your will, like cha-cha&booby videos, but its happening every time you go out. You are being tracked and recorded and even filmed in bathrooms and fitting rooms sometimes (under guise of theft prevention).


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THE UKIAH POLICE DEPARTMENT issued the following press release @ 3:22 pm Tuesday:

"On Monday, February 15th at about 12:45 pm, UPD Officers were dispatched to Wal-Mart regarding an employee who was suspected of embezzlement.

Officers learned Wal-Mart’s Asset Protection Team had conducted an internal investigation and had evidence that showed employee Donna Arriaga, age 58, from Ukiah had embezzled in excess of $6,000, since late January 2016. Officers placed Arriaga under arrest for felony embezzlement and grand theft. Arriaga had in excess of $4000 in cash in her possession at the time of her arrest.

UPD Detectives were called out and assisted with the subsequent investigation. Detectives obtained information that Arriaga had purchased numerous items with the money she stole from Wal-Mart, which led to a local motel room in the 600 block of South Orchard Ave., where she had been staying.


Some items that were purchased with the stolen funds were located in this motel room and recovered. While at the motel room Officers and Detectives contacted Raymond Snyder Jr., age 48, from Lake County.

A records check revealed that Snyder had two local warrants and a Lake County warrant for his arrest. Snyder was arrested for the warrants and was additionally found to be in possession of a controlled substance.

Snyder was booked into county jail and Arriaga was booked and released."

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by Kym Kemp

At first Tara Sutherland of Southern Humboldt Locals on Patrol thought the glint of white on the asphalt in front of the Garberville Courthouse Monday night was a shattered pen but, as she drew close, she realized what it was.

“There’s a needle here,” she warned. Sutherland and eight others were walking as part of their night patrol after their first town meeting this year.

The group gathered round the needle. One group member opened a large pack containing everything from food and hand warmers for the homeless to garbage bags meant to contain discarded items snapped up with their trash grabbers. Out came a sealed container designed to hold needles dropped by drug addicts in town.

“Number 52,” said Melissa Sutherland, sister to Tara. “I’ll have to buy another pencil.” As a visual reminder of the dangers they clear from the town streets, she puts a pencil in a large jar every time they find a discarded needle. This September when LOP (Locals on Patrol) have been patrolling Garberville for one entire year, she plans to donate the pencils to students at the local school.

Earlier that evening, the group had met with Supervisor Estelle Fennell, Sergeant Jesse Taylor of the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office, Connie Beck of the Department of Health and Human Services and about 75 of their fellow townsfolk. They had a list of concerns they wanted to address. Chief among them was the increasing public signs of drug use in the town.

Tara Sutherland, one of the founding members of the group which started last fall said, “People are shooting up in daylight on the streets.”

“We can watch drug runners come from certain rooms” in the motels, said business owner Beth Allen.

John Earp who runs the 76 station in town complained, “I have customers come in saying, ‘What is going on in town. We were scared to come in…I wouldn’t even have stopped if I had known it was like this.'”

“That affects your business,” he added.

“We used to be a tourist town,” said Beth Allen. “Now our Yelp reviews for our town are terrible. Our tourist business has dropped off.”

But LOP working in conjunction with Fennel, Taylor and Beck is trying to address the issues.

One possible solution to motels harboring drug sellers and other law breakers was a proposed ordinace that could be passed for the unincorporated areas of the county such as Garberville similar to the one that closed the Blue Heron Motel in Eureka – an ordinance that would allow for the assessment of fines on motels that had too many law enforcement issues.

Another solution proposed was putting together a MIST unit (Mobile Intervention Service Team). Fennell said that with that unit in place, officers and experts in mental health come to the area and become more deeply involved. They look for people with serious mental health issues and build trust with clients over time. “They just get to know that person” and their issues, Supervisor Fennell said.

John Anderson, a Mental Health Clinician stationed in the community pointed out that sometimes when services are presented, there have been few willing to take help. “I’ve been out on our streets along with my case manager…offering services,” he said, “but the response, if any, is very, very minimal.”

Sergeant Taylor said that Sheriff’s Department had just gone through “a massive hiring phase.” He explained, “Our staffing level is improving.”  In addition, he was working on getting more officers for the area. “I’m Southern Humboldt’s biggest cheerleader,” he stated.

To the crowd’s pleased astonishment, he announced that officers like to work this area. “Garberville is a coveted spot,” he said.

The board of LOP agreed that over the last few months the Sheriff’s Office was more visible and more responsive.

“We have noticed a huge difference,” said Tara Sutherland. “Thank you for that.” But she also noted during the meeting that the area needed a resident deputy and “we really need 24 hour coverage.”

After the meeting as the crowd drifted away, Sutherland and LOP donned their green Locals on Patrol vests. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday they gather in Garberville at 6 p.m. for a patrol through the town. On Wednesday, they meet at three when children get off the school bus. Because of the meeting, they headed out on patrol later than normal.

Sutherland, four months pregnant, didn’t appear to hesitate when seeing people in violation of the group’s standards.  She admonished firmly but politely two men sitting on a railing in front of a business.

When the man offered excuses, one of the members of LOP pointed to a damaged part of the rail and stated that the business owner didn’t want people sitting there as it could harm his building.

When the man didn’t move quickly, another member asked him about his instrument case. When he opened it to reveal a violin, the woman complimented it and spoke to him quietly about its beauty.

Eventually, the two men left. Though they obviously would have preferred to remain where they were, the interaction between LOP and loiterers was non-confrontational.

As the group walked through town they were greeted once by residents with applause and shouted encouragement. Sometimes community members hand them money to help with expenses, said Tara Sutherland. Earlier that evening at the meeting, she had told the gathering that many in the community were angry and ready to strike out because of the deteriorating situation in their town. She was worried about violence and that, she said, is why LOP was organized. “We are the final step before the vigilantes come out,” she declared.

During the meeting, Sutherland had repeatedly requested support. “Be our backbone,” she asked the assembled crowd. Without community support, she said, LOP would not be able to function. Sutherland addressed the gathered business owners asking them to step up and support the group’s efforts to move loiterers out of doorways and off railings by coming outside their businesses and standing in solidarity beside the group members.

“We want [those violating the group’s standards] to know our community is backing us,” she said. She also asked for community members to join the patrols so they have the required four person team.

Right now the small group seems strong. The gathering on Monday was relatively large for such a little town.

But whether or not the Locals on patrol will get the support needed to keep the group vibrant and a force for order in the community depends a lot on who is willing to help. As local resident Traci Bear Thiele said, “Some people just talk and some people walk the walk.”

(Courtesy, the Redheaded Blackbelt/

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California Legislators announced a new bill in response to recent calls for action following the Coastal Commission firing their executive director.  AB 2002 would require anyone, with the exception of volunteers, who engages the Coastal Commission with the intent of influencing decision making to register as a lobbyist.

Assemblyman Wood said, “The fact that this is not already required is an egregious loophole.  The public and the legislature have the right to know who is influencing decisions made by the Coastal Commission and a responsibility to hold the Commission to the same standards as other policy making bodies. 

The Political Reform Act of 1976  (PRA) sets the parameters for what qualifies as lobbying, what lobbyists must do to ensure transparency and the penalties for noncompliance.  AB 2002 applies these obligations to people attempting to influence “administrative actions” of the Coastal Commission including the proposal, drafting, development, consideration, amendment, enactment, or defeat of any rule, regulation, permit action, federal consistency review, appeal, local coastal program, port master plan, public works plan, long range development plan, categorical or other exclusion from coastal development permit requirements, cease and desist order, restoration order, or any other quasi-judicial or quasi-legislative matter requiring commission action.

“We depend on the Coastal Commission to protect one of our state’s greatest resources,” said Wood.  “If there are outside influences affecting decisions made by the Commission we should know about it.”

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Throw in the death of Scalia, and a governing system with only the thinnest shroud of a structured, lawful, and constitutional pretense is thrown into the shredder. This next year will prove what many of us have always known; the United States has been ground down to nothing more than an illegitimate power structure controlled by elites solely for the maintenance, betterment, and consolidation of control and power of those elites.

The super-delegates and DNC doing all within their power to prop up Clinton, the GOP leadership and establishment at all out war against Trump. The supposed media-of-record, owned and controlled by the monied interests, exposing their activist inclinations and their powers of control (debates) as the fourth branch as never before.

In November, the will of the people will once again be reined in by those in the wheelhouse. It will be more blatant and obvious than anytime previously. The media that protects them will be even less equipped or able to produce the necessary lies. But when it’s over you can be rest assured, that come that cold January morning it won’t be Sanders or Trump taking that pledge. We will not be allowed this chance to freak-out or act-out. It’s not our choice to make.

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by Rosa Montero

(Translated and edited by Louis S. Bedrock)

I am reading in a fascinating book by the neurologist V.S. 
Ramachandran (Phantoms In the Brain, Ed. William Morrow, NY) that God lives in the left temporal lobe of our brain, just above the ear.  Well, Ramchandran doesn’t say so in these exact words, and in addition employs countless circumlocutions, poor man, to avoid irritating believers.  But the fact is in that soft, fatty, gray mass of our brain, in that lump of organic material with the consistency of a cheese spread, there’s a small corner in which the idea of God is entrenched; where divinity palpitates, expands or diminishes, depending on the turbulence of our lobe.

Or at least that is what a series of studies and experiments realized in recent years appear to demonstrate.  It’s undeniable that epileptics, whose attacks originate precisely in that part of the brain, experience intense mystical raptures during their crises and even during the periods between attacks.  These epileptic crises sometimes are part of what are called “petit mal” — that is, small, very localized attacks that last very few seconds and have few general consequences except for this sudden awe before an all encompassing divinity.

However, the vestiges of these electrical jolts in the brain can change the behavior of an individual forever, even to the point that some neurologists speak of the “personality of the temporal lobe” in those patients that consists of, more or less, a lack of a sense of humor, exacerbation of emotions, a tendency to give a divine interpretation to the most insignificant minutia, egomania, and an obsessive interest in philosophical, religious, and moral themes.  It’s the portrait of the guru or the fanatic.  Since my reading of Ramachandran, I imagine the heads of clerics and shamans lighting up periodically during the night with the radiance of their silent neural torments.

This type of brain damage may have spawned our great writers as well as our mystics.  Without doubt, great artists harbor genius within themselves; nevertheless, the damaged lobe may have granted them the courage to stare into the eyes of God.  It is said that Saint Teresa suffered epileptic attacks.

The brain is a prodigious artifact.  Its injuries may produce monsters; however, they may also produce gods and fantasies.

“Finally I understand the destiny of the earth.” asserted an epileptic after an attack.  Or, “I have seen the divine light which illuminates all things.”  Perhaps Paul of Tarsus, when he fell off the donkey, hit the left side of his head with a rock and that resulted in his sudden, drastic conversion.

Forgive my bizarre hypotheses.  Actually, the only things these experiments show is that our capacity to understand the transcendental is housed in a region of our brain -- just as other regions of the neural zones concern mathematics or memory.

But these studies are unnerving.  One experiment evaluated the emotional response of normal people and people with damaged lobes to various images:  family portraits, neutral representations (of a vase, for example), erotic photographs, scenes of appalling violence (like a crocodile eating someone alive), and sacred images.  The “normal” people responded emotionally to the erotic and the family pictures and were quite upset by the violent images.  The patients with lobe damage only reacted to the religious images.

It’s disturbing to think that many of our saints and gurus are, or were, mentally disturbed people capable of ignoring the pain of a human being eaten alive while they levitate with the simple vision of a cross. Perhaps this explains the presence of Evil in the world:  it’s possible that Evil is merely that damaged, deformed God that all of us carry inside of our skulls.

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THE PEACE AND FREEDOM PARTY of California has again made a serious error in again closing off its presidential primary to independents.

Story from the 'Napa Valley REGISTER'

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Cleaning out the gardening shed or upgrading equipment for spring planting?

Donation of supplies is a great way to show your support for the local not-for-profits such as Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens! With your tax-deductible donation of any item on the "MCBG Wish List," you actively become a part of our mission to engage and enrich lives by displaying and conserving plants in harmony with our Northern California Coastal ecosystems.

We are currently in need of:

  • Two Polycarb Garden Sheds for Nursery on the Plaza and the propagation area
  • Mule or electric cart
  • Small pick-up truck
  • Large chipper shredder
  • Outdoor display items for the Nursery - wood shelves, étagères, plant stands, wagons, wheelbarrows, etc.
  • Plastic tubs of any size to help store off-season items at The Garden Store
  • Deep plastic tubs, at least 9” to 14” wide and 9”+ tall, with or without lids to hold our plant signs, which are taking up too much space in the Nursry office
  • Bigger storage bins with lids to hold soil amendments to keep dirt and grime out
  • Vacuum to help keep our floors clean and inviting
  • Electric hand mixer with twin blades for Rhody's Garden Cafe
  • Two-slice toaster to warm delicious organic breads at Rhody’s

Our Wish List is updated periodically on our website:

If you have any of these items that are in working condition and would like to donate them to the Gardens, please contact the the Administrative Office at 707-964-4352 ext. 10 or email Also, if you have other items not included on the Wish List give us a call, we are always looking for fresh supplies!

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MICHAEL MOORE SAYS NO, Donald Trump Is Not Like Him - First Draft. Political News, Now. - The New York Times

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Willits, CA: Now in its third year, the Mendocino County Museum Road Show has become an annual tradition, reflecting the lives of residents back to them via drama and song. The Museum Road Show will play over the span of three weekends in March, at 7:30 p.m. for one night only each, at the following venues: Friday, March 11 at Willits High School; Saturday, March 12 at Arena Theater in Point Arena; Saturday, March 19 at SPACE Theater in Ukiah; Friday, March 25 at the Anderson Valley Grange in Philo; and Saturday, March 26 at Cotton Auditorium in Fort Bragg. There will also be a matinee at 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 20 at SPACE Theater in Ukiah. Doors open half an hour early for guests to find their seats and enjoy pre-show music. Museum Road Show Director Linda Pack, working with dramaturge Kate Magruder, has once again dug into the archives, presenting a completely new selection of stories gleaned entirely from local primary sources. The audience will get to test the adage "The more things change, the more they stay the same" as the cast romps through tales of hop-picking, childhood pranks, home remedies, politics, vice, temperance campaigns, and the exciting, critical election of 1916 for wet versus dry in Mendocino County.  Seven remarkable actors will together portray more than 50 different characters, as local history springs to life through a number of stories that are all the more touching and funny because they are true. Americana ensemble All About Sally will once again provide vocal background, which will combine with light and sound effects, a backdrop of never-before-seen vintage photos, and the trademark proscenium arch to form a homegrown extravaganza.


The Mendocino County Road Show is a history-based theater program of the Mendocino County Museum, which is based out of Willits and is a repository of the area's rich and ever-evolving heritage. The Road Show is the Museum's means of bringing that heritage directly to the people of Mendocino County, traveling to its far-flung communities. Director Alison Glassey believes “The Museum Road Show is a way of connecting people with their history and connecting the Museum with its people.”

The cost for the Road Show is $15 for Adults, $12 for Seniors (65 & over) and Youth (20 & under). A few of these true stories of our county’s wild past, although tastefully and humorously presented, discuss licentious behavior. Parental guidance is suggested. Additionally, theatre goers are asked not to bring young children who cannot naturally stay quiet and sit still through the performance.

All tickets are available online through, by calling the Museum at (707) 459-2736, or by visiting the Mendocino County Museum at 400 East Commercial Street in Willits during open hours, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets for individual shows can also be purchased at specific outlets in the cities of the performance venues: Mendocino Book Company (Ukiah), Arena Market & Café (Point Arena), Harvest Market (Fort Bragg), and All That Good Stuff (Boonville). Tickets for the shows can sell out quickly; advance tickets are strongly encouraged. The 2016 Museum Road Show is generously supported by our Broadcast Partner KZYX and local businesses, including: Ingel-Haven Ranch/Magruder Meats, North Coast Brewing Company, Savings Bank of Mendocino County, The Book Juggler, Emandal-A Farm on a River, Harvest Market, Lia Patterson RE/MAX Full Spectrum, Lisa Epstein State Farm, Mendo Mill, Room to Bloom Preschool & Infant Center, Albion Doors & Window, Sparetime Supply, DripWorks, Real Estate Magazine, and Saucy Ukiah.

Paloma Patterson, M.A.
Mendocino County Museum
400 East Commercial Street
Willits, CA 95490
(707) 459-2736

Tickets now on sale for the 3rd annual Museum Road Show! Take a lighthearted romp through vice, debauchery and politics in the early days of our county. Premiering in 5 locations throughout March.

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WILLOWS, Calif. - The Mendocino National Forest officials are conducting public outreach to fill committee member seats and accept project proposals for several RAC boards within Glenn, Colusa, Tehama, Mendocino and Lake Counties.

RACs were established as a provision of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000. By law the four-year term, 15-member committee is composed of a wide representation of national forest interests organized into three categories. An additional member is also appointed as a replacement should a committee member leave for any reason.

"RACs are extremely beneficial to both the Forest and local communities. They allow for public engagement and approval on resource projects that benefit public lands," said Forest Supervisor Ann Carlson. Applicants must complete a cover letter, interest form and an FBI background check form prior to being considered for the committee.  An interest form is available on the Mendocino National Forest website at:<>.  From the main page, click "Working Together" on the left side bar, then Advisory Committees.

To apply for Glenn, Colusa or Tehama County RACs, please address your correspondence to Zach Rich or Randy Jero, 825 North Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95988 or call 530-934-3316 for more information.  Applications must be received on or before March 7, 2016.

To apply for Mendocino or Lake County RACs, please address your correspondence to Debbie McIntosh, RAC Coordinator, 10025 Elk Mountain Road, Upper Lake, CA 95485 or call 707-275-1407 for more information. Applications must be received on or before March 15, 2016.

RAC projects must have broad community-based support with objectives that may include, but are not limited to, road, trail and infrastructure maintenance or obliteration; soil productivity improvements; improvements in forest ecosystem health; watershed restoration and maintenance; restoration, maintenance and improvement of wildlife and fish habitat; control of noxious and exotic weeds; hazardous fuels reduction; and reintroduction of native species.  Projects must be on public land but can occur on private land if it can be demonstrated that there is a benefit to public land resources.

Proposals currently being accepted for:

Glenn County RAC - $79,998.00 available - Submit project proposals to Zach Rich no later than March 7, 2016

Colusa County RAC - $32,418.00 available - Submit project proposals to Zach Rich no later than March 7, 2016

Tehama County RAC - $200,046.00 available - Submit project proposals to Randy Jero no later than March 7, 2016

Mendocino and Lake County RAC - Submit project proposals to Debbie McIntosh - call 707-275-1407 for more information

Project proponents are encouraged to present their proposals at upcoming RAC meetings.

The first Glenn and Colusa County RAC meeting is tentatively scheduled for March 21, 2016 from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM at the Mendocino National Forest Supervisor's Office, 825 North Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95988. Tehama County RAC meeting is tentatively scheduled for March 17, 2016 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM at the Tehama County Farm Bureau Office, 275 Sale Lane, Red Bluff, CA 96080.

For additional information about the Secure Rural Schools legislation, including Titles I, II and III, please visit the SRS website at<>.  For further information or questions please contact each RAC coordinator directly.

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Lunch Bunch Cook Book Club

Friday, February 19th @ noon

Do you love to cook but want some inspiration for new delicious dishes? Join us at the next monthly meeting of our new Lunch Bunch Cook Book Club where we will discover and devour new recipes from our selection of cookbooks. During this month's meeting, we'll be tasting the food we prepared from the recipes we picked at our first meeting and choose new recipes for our next meeting in March.

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Fuse Bead Anime & Crunchyroll Manga Teen Club

Wednesday, February 24th @ 2-5PM

Do you live, breathe, and love manga/anime or are you a new fan? Everyone is welcome at the next meeting of the Anime & Manga Teen Club, with crafts and book chats the last Wednesday of every month in the Teen Room.

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Catapults & Trebuchets

Friday, February 26th @ 3:30-4:30PM

We are offering kids from ages 7-11 years old the chance to build catapults and trebuchets. Once we have completed our models, we'll test our machines and fine tune our designs.

Children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult, and adult participation and assistance is encouraged.

This event is graciously sponsored by the Ukiah Valley Friends of the Library.

For a full list of Library events, check out our Google Calendar or follow us on Facebook.

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Laytonville Grange; Thursday, February 25; 1pm-5pm

Please join us for an introductory overview of some of our Best Management Practices

IMO - This will be an overview of Indigenous Microorganisms and demonstrate how to culture them into a applicable innoculate.   We will aslo explain why culturing and applying your own unique Terroir' is a beneficial way to enhance your soil food web.

FPJ - Fermented Plant Juice - The “How Too” on fermenting plants, which plants to use and how to use them.

OHN - Oriental Herbal Nutrient - is a fermented extract of herbs used in natural farming to optimize their resilience to environmental stresses such as wind, drought, heat etc.

LAB - Here we will learn how to culture Lactic acid bacteria and it's benefits in increasing crop and livestock production, plus so much more.

Teas - Tea brewing a key to success! Here we will discuss several types of teas, each of their unique benefits, how to brew them and when to apply them. Anaerobic tea, botanical tea, aerated compost tea, seed sprout tea, vermicasting tea.

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For Mendocino Coast’s 27th Writers Conference

Registration begins Tuesday, March 15 for the 27th Annual Mendocino Coast Writers Conference held August 4-7 at the Mendocino College - Mendocino Coast Campus in Fort Bragg.

Leslie Wahlquist reads her work during a morning session at the 2015 Mendocino Coast Writers Conference. Writers of many talents, ages, and backgrounds attend morning workshops, optional manuscript consultations, craft talks, open mic, literary readings, publishing pitch panels, and informal social gatherings. Visit for more information. (Photo Credit: Mimi Carroll)

The Mendocino Coast Writers Conference (MCWC) features award-winning authors, and publishing professionals. Long considered an intimate, warm and personalized conference, MCWC serves 100 participants who develop their craft in a supportive literary community surrounded by the spectacular scenery and temperate climate of the Mendocino Coast.

Writers at all levels attend morning workshops, craft talks, open mic, literary readings, and publishing pitch panels. Students may opt-in for manuscript consultations with authors, editors, and agents. Informal social gatherings enrich networking and conference experience. MCWC provides a place to work closely and exchange ideas with writers of many talents, ages, and backgrounds. Selected literary readings by visiting authors and the popular “Paths to Publishing” panel will be open to the public.

Nationally recognized publisher Shirin Yim Bridges will lead MCWC’s new, Publishing Boot Camp on Sunday, August 7. Everyone is invited to enroll in this day-long Publishing Boot Camp, whether or not you register for the main 3-day writing conference.

2016 instructors include Les Standiford (Master Class); Jessica Piazza (Poetry); Reyna Grande (Creative Nonfiction/Memoir); James W. Hall (Novel/Mystery); Jordan Rosenfeld (Emerging Writers); Lori Ostlund (Short Fiction); and Laura Atkins (Children & YA). YA author Emily Lloyd-Jones, literary agents Andy Ross and Lisa Abellera, editors Grant Faulkner (NaNoWrMo), and Brooke Warner (SheWrites Press) round out the faculty.

Various scholarships are offered to writers of all ages. Scholarship applications open March 15 along with registration. Teachers may earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) through Dominican University. Seats are filled first-come, first-served. Early application is encouraged.

Visit for complete guidelines. Barbara Lee, Registrar:

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Fort Bragg Center for the Arts will present Internationally acclaimed pianist  Tanya Gabrielian on Sunday, March 6, in Preston Hall, Mendocino at 3 PM. She will perform works by Bach, Schubert, Schumann, Chopin, and Sarasate. Tickets are $20 in advance from Harvest Market, Fort Bragg and Out of This World in Mendocino, Tickets at the door are $25.  For additional information call 937-1018 or go to

* * *


by Bruce McEwen

There’s two sides to the State of Jefferson secessionist movement in its Northern California, Southern Oregon heartland, and the two halves of that coin are diametrically opposed, politically.

On the right you have the don’t tread on me Libertarian cattle ranchers whose Daddies and Granddaddies, circa 1940, came up with the idea for a new state. In NorCal you've got ultra liberal back to the land pot growers inspired by Earnest Callenbach’s sensational 90s novel Ecotopia, another secessionist fantasy to which many stoners remain entranced.

While the sides are traditional opponents, both are fed-up and on the verge of making concessions to one another for the greater glory of a common cause: The State of Jefferson.

So it’s not all that surprising that every once in a while the in-between wannabe appropriates the brand  —  for ulterior applications. That appears to be how the State of Jefferson Medical Marijuana Co-Operative turned up in one person in the Mendocino County Courthouse last week — Brian Woodson.

In Dockers and Oxfords, Woodson seemed neither rancher or pothead. He looked like a man with his head on straight. But his lawyer, the unkempt, confused, wheezing pot-asthmatic, Edward Denson of Alderpoint, looked like Bernie Sanders after three days sleeping on the Courthouse lawn.

Mr. Woodson’s trial for illegal cultivation and possession of marijuana for sale has suffered many delays, and his lawyer, the tattered, disoriented Denson, has been fined $500 for causing some of these delays, and it was delayed again last Friday as two witnesses took the stand during a pretrial motion.

The first was Peter Martin, a Brit, and president of the Martin Family Investment Corporation. They own a tract of land near Ukiah. The land in question was characterized as a cattle ranch specializing in a Scottish Highland breed. The rancher leasing the Martin land was Brian Woodson.

At first DA Eyster was adamant in objecting — well, lemme rephrase that: Eyster objected adamantly to everything Denson said and did throughout — but in the end he was thrilled with defense witness Peter Martin, so much so, he subpoenaed Martin for the trial despite the Brit’s urgent desire in returning to the United Kingdom. But to begin with, Peter Martin took the stand over Eyster’s vociferous objections.

DA Eyster: “Why do we have to hear this witness’s testimony now, Judge?”

Denson: “Because he has to leave the country before the trial date, and we need to get his testimony on record.”

Eyster: “I object, judge. This is all over my objections.”

Judge David Nelson: “This is just a conditional examination to determine whether his testimony may be used and is relevant to the trial.”

Denson entered Martin’s passport as Defense Exhibit A, pointing out that it showed he entered the country on November 19, 2015.

Denson: “How long are you allowed to stay in the country?”

Eyster: “Objection.”

Martin: “Ninety days.”

Nelson: “Just a moment, Mr. Martin, we have an objection. Please wait until I rule on the objection before you answer  —  in future. Mr. Eyster, what’s the basis for your objection?”

Eyster: “Calls for a expert opinion, or knowledge the witness doesn’t have.”

Denson: “How do you know you can only stay 90 days?”

Martin: “The customs official told me.”

Eyster: “Objection, move to strike.”

Nelson: “The objection is sustained, and the answer will be stricken from the record.”

Denson: “What is your understanding of how long a person can stay in the US on a visa?”

Eyster: “Objection  —  relevance!”

Nelson: “Overruled.”

Martin: “My understanding is that it’s 90 days.”

Denson: “And did you enter the country on a visa?”

Martin: “Yes I did, sir.”

Denson had given copies of Martin’s airline tickets (Exhibit B) to the DA as part of discovery, but had forgotten to bring in the originals to show the defendant and ask if they were his. This oversight put Denson in the humiliating position of having to beg the DA to loan him the copies which, after he'd extracted a suitable groveling from Denson, Eyster finally gave them up. Yes, they were Martin’s electronic tickets and showed a departure date of February 16 from San Francisco to London.

Having brilliantly established that his witness was due to depart the country, Denson rested.

Eyster: “As to your understanding of the 90-day rule, Mr. Martin — please show me where it says that on Exhibit B.”

Martin: “It’s not on that piece of paper; that’s just an electronic printout of my tickets.”

Eyster: “Did you bring anything with you today to show the existence of this 90-day rule?”

Martin: “No, sir.”

Eyster: “Has anyone from the US government told you you have to leave?”

Martin: “No, sir … except the customs agent—”

Eyster: “Objection, judge, that’s been stricken!”

Denson: “This is not a fabrication, your honor.”

Eyster: “We don’t know that!”

Denson: “He’s a British citizen and he needs to leave the country so he came today so he could testify.”

Eyster: “Not over my objections, judge. He can’t do this, not over my objections.”

Nelson: “He’s about to leave, whether forced to or not, so I’m going to allow it.”

Eyster: “Judge, you’re making the assumption that he’s the owner of the property.”

Nelson: “Do you own property in the Ukiah area?”

Martin: “I have an interest in property in the Ukiah area.”

Nelson: “What does that mean?”

Martin: “The property at 11200 Chingam Road is owned by Martin Family Investments Corporation, of which I am the president, since October of 2011.”

Denson: “And have you leased the property to a tenant.”

Eyster: “Objection — leading!”

Nelson: “The question ‘has he leased the property?’ is not leading, although asking to whom it was leased  —  ‘a tenant’  —  would be; but since a lease implies a tenant, I’m going to overrule the objection.”

Denson: “And who was that?”

Martin: “Fraser Nelson.”

Denson: “Did you have a written agreement?”

Martin: “No, sir.”

Denson: “How long did the lease last?”

Martin: “Well, it was for a year, so through 2012, but his rental payments were in arrears when his occupancy ceased earlier than that.”

Denson: “Did you have a subsequent tenant?”

Martin: “Yes, sir, Jeremy Fleming.”

Denson: “When was that?”

Martin: “From April 2013 to 2014.”

Again, payment was not forthcoming and Mr. Martin found himself in a Redding café lamenting his difficulty finding a non-deadbeat tenant when Brian Woodson, apparently eavesdropping, offered $10,000 cash up front for a turn at the lease. This time Martin got a written ”agricultural” lease and flew back to jolly old England a much more sanguine subject of the crown. Woodson soon brought in his herd of about 50 Scottish cows.

He also erected a greenhouse.

Alas, Woodson’s rent ($2000 per month) also fell into arrears. However, over the phone he arranged to sell some of his beef cattle to the Martin Family Investment Corp. to make up the diff and both parties were happy.

But then, those noted Mendo killjoys, Sergeant Bruce Smith and Deputy Jeremy Mason of the County of Mendocino Marijuana Eradication Team  (COMMET) swooped down on the bucolic landscape and fully acclimated Scot cows and busted Mr. Woodson in possession of more than 200 marijuana plants and nearly 20 pounds of processed bud.

Mr. Martin testified that he knew nothing about the marijuana grow, had never looked in the greenhouse or other buildings, and only came to check on the land itself. He approved of the cattle because they kept the grass down, whereas his other land owners in the area had to hire mowers.

(Uh, just sayin' but pot plantations are often arrangements where the landowner gets a percentage of sales, but if the operation is busted the owner says he had no idea his property was being used for illegal purposes.)

Eyster: “Who is the secretary of your investment corporation?”

Martin: “Adam Honeycutt.”

Eyster: “Who are the other officers?”

Martin: “There aren’t any.”

Eyster: “When was it formed?”

Martin: “In 2011. It was formed to buy this property.”

Eyster: “How do you check on the financial health of your corporation?”

Martin: “I don’t check, not in detail.”

Eyster: “Would it surprise you to learn your corporation has been suspended since 2013?”

Martin was more than surprised. He was dumbstruck.

Eyster: “So you have a lease that you entered into after the corporation was suspended by the State Franchise Tax Board?”

Martin loosened his necktie enough to gulp then whispered: “I just learned that.”

Eyster: “Are you educated, Mr. Martin?”

Martin: “Yes, sir, I have a masters in business administration.”

Eyster: “Do you know who looks after corporations in the State of California?”

Martin: “No, sir.”

Eyster: “Do you know your entity number with the Secretary of State?”

Martin: “No… no, I don’t believe I do.”

Eyster: “Who was your lease notarized by?”

Martin: “A land agent across from the Costa Coffee Shop.”

Eyster: “You were present and chose not to sign it?”

Martin: “Yes, sir. I did.”

Eyster: “You approved this lease when it was signed by your ex-vice president?”

Martin: “Yes, sir.”

Eyster: “It’s an agricultural lease… what crops were planted and growing?”

Martin: “To my knowledge, none. Excepting grass — grass for the cattle.”

Eyster: “Let me show you this copy of the lease. See where it says the tenant shall not keep any hazardous or flammable materials on the premises?”

Martin: “Yes, sir, I see it.”

Eyster: “Did you know that your property had been searched by the police and butane for making honey oil was found?”

Martin again seemed dumbstruck.

(Again just sayin', but the man is a citizen of a country world renowned for the excellence of its thespians.)

Eyster: “Do you know what an alcohol extraction lab is?”

Martin: “No.”

Eyster: “What steps did you take to make sure marijuana was not being grown on your property?”

Martin: “None.”

Eyster: “Did Woodson tell you he was found in the greenhouse with Prop 215 marijuana plants?”

Martin: “No.”

Eyster: “Did he mention the 20 pounds of processed marijuana?”

Martin: “No.”

Eyster: “You have a master’s degree in business administration?”

Martin: “Yes, sir.”

Eyster thought the answer amusing, by the look on his face, but before Mr. Martin could leave to catch his flight, the DA’s Deputy Chief Investigator Andy Alvarado papered him with a subpoena.

Martin: “Does this mean I can’t leave the country?”

Alvarado: “Your attorney will explain it to you.”

But Denson was engaged just then: he'd called in Damian Wyzgg of Mount Shasta, the president of the State of Jefferson Medical Marijuana Co-Operative and was trying to get some questions asked over DA Eyster’s steady stream of objections. The contest of wills was uneven — Eyster was like the roar of the lion to the squeak of Denson's mouse. It evolved that everyone in the Shasta co-op showed Mr. Wyzgg their doctor’s recommendation, then they each paid $500 to Woodson to grow their “medicine.”

Eyster asked Wyzgg what he had done to make sure none of the marijuana “leaked” into the black market.

Wyzgg: “We never got any of the marijuana.”

Eyster: “That’s not what I asked you. I want to know what precautions you took to make sure this marijuana wasn’t sold on the black market.”

Wyzgg: “None. I didn’t do anything.”

Eyster: “Did you do any research before you set up this co-operative?”

Wyzgg “No.”

Eyster: “Get any legal advice, consult with a lawyer?”

Wyzgg: “No.”

Eyster: “Did you read the State Attorney General’s guidelines for setting up a co-operative?”

Wyzgg looked as miserable and confused as Martin had. He had come in looking somewhat scruffy, his hair hadn’t obeyed the comb, his khakis looked slept in, and he had an awed expression on his face, like a kid at his first rodeo. In fact, he looked a lot like the unprepared attorney who'd called him to testify without, apparently, preparing the poor guy for what he'd be testifying to.

But Eyster, who had earlier been so stubbornly opposed to Denson's pole-axed witnesses, was suddenly delighted with both of them, so much so that he now had no objection to their taking the stand in Woodson’s defense.

The hearing was concluded and the trial set for Tuesday morning. The stranded Brit has had to revise his travel plans.

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, February 13, 2016

Aguilera-Ramirez, Bradshaw, Campos, Cummins
Aguilera-Ramirez, Bradshaw, Campos, Cummins

OMAR AGUILERA-RAMIREZ, Philo. Criminal threats.

MELISSA BRADSHAW, Bakersfield/Ukiah. DUI-drugs, suspended license, controlled substance.

GABRIEL CAMPOS, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

MICHAEL CUMMINS, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public.

Davila, Gonzalez, Kagley, Knight
Davila, Gonzalez, Kagley, Knight

DANIELLE DAVILA, Willits. Drunk in public.

VICENTE GONZALEZ, Willits. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, impersonation of another, failure to appear, probation revocation.

MICHAEL KAGLEY, Fort Bragg. Retaking land after removal, paraphernalia, failure to appear, probation revocation. (Ed note: We think this first charge has something to do with returning to land or property after having been evicted…)

DELILAH KNIGHT, Ukiah. Obtaining credit with someone else’s ID.

Martinez, McGrathj, Meza
Martinez, McGrathj, Meza

LORENZO MARTINEZ, Talmage. Parole violation.

GWENDOLYN MCGRATH, Ukiah. Fugitive, multiple DUIs, probation revocation.


Miller, Overcast, Paquet
Miller, Overcast, Paquet

TAYLOR MILLER, Ukiah. Domestic battery.

JENNIFER OVERCAST, Roseville/Willits. Failure to appear.

MATTHEW PAQUET, Ukiah. Drunk in public, false impersonaltion, parole violation.

Sandaval-Reyes, Tovar, Vantreese
Sandaval-Reyes, Tovar, Vantreese


ENRIQUE TOVAR, Nice/Hopland. Domestic assault, resisting, offenses while on bail.

WILLIAM VANTREESE, Ukiah. Probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, February 12, 2016

Avery, Bailey, Couthren
Avery, Bailey, Couthren

JAMES AVERY, Ukiah. Under influence/possession of ontrolled substance, suspended license.

KEVIN BAILEY, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

ZEBULON COUTHREN, Willits. Probation revocation.

Ditto, Galletti, Hernandez
Ditto, Galletti, Hernandez

JOSEPH DITTO JR., Redwood Valley. Resisting.


EUFEMIO HERNANDEZ, Ukiah. Failure to appear, probation revocation.

Hewitt, Lockett, Murphy
Hewitt, Lockett, Murphy

JUSTIN HEWITT, Willits. Drunk in public.

WILLIAM LOCKETT, Ukiah. Domestic assault.

TERRY MURPHY, Fort Bragg. Protectiver order violation.

Ray, San Millan, Travis, Young
Ray, San Millan, Travis, Young

CHRISTOPHER RAY III, Covelo. Domestic battery, controlled substance, paraphernalia, false ID.


GARRETT TRAVIS, Shasta Lake/Ukiah. DUI.


* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, February 11, 2016

Beck, Bettega, Cruz
Beck, Bettega, Cruz

VIOLET BECK, Ukiah. Driver with concealed weapon, possession of drugs while armed.

CURTIS BETTEGA, Covelo. Controlled substance, probation revocation.

JOE CRUZ, Upper Lake/Ukiah. Suspended license

Gardiner, Gibney, Guevara, Holcomb
Gardiner, Gibney, Guevara, Holcomb

MATHEW GARDINER, Ukiah. Possession of/under influence of controlled substance, probation revocation.

SAMUEL GIBNEY, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public.

JOSHUA GUEVARA, Talmage. Dirk-dagger, probation revocation.

LANIE HOLCOMB, Willits. Probation revocation.

Jewell, Kidd, Kroll, Lincoln
Jewell, Kidd, Kroll, Lincoln

CLINT JEWELL, Willits. Drunk in public.

JARED KIDD, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

DAVID KROLL, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

LUCY LINCOLN, Covelo. Harboring a felon, probation revocation.

Moses, Plotnick, Ramirez, River
Moses, Plotnick, Ramirez, River

STEVEN MOSES, Ukiah. Resisting, probation revocation.

ROBERT PLOTNICK, Laytonville. DUI, misdemeanor hit&run, child endangerment.

ISRAEL RAMIREZ, Willits. Unspecified felony warrant.

SHANNON RIVER, Willits. Drunk in public.


  1. LouisBedrock February 18, 2016

    —The Ukiah Daily Journal, by the way, had to do away with their comment line altogether because of the insults, profanity, and general low expression.

    Bruce Anderson, Comments for 15 February, Mendocino County Today

    —I don’t swear just for the hell of it. Language is a poor enough means of communication. I think we should use all the words we’ve got. Besides, there are damn few words that anybody understands.

    Henry Drummand character (in real life, Clarence Darrow) from the movie

  2. Mike February 18, 2016

    Bernie Sanders and John Kasich appear to be by far the most “electable”:

    Clinton 44, Trump 43 Clinton +1
    General Election: Cruz vs. Clinton Quinnipiac Cruz 46, Clinton 43 Cruz +3
    General Election: Rubio vs. Clinton Quinnipiac Rubio 48, Clinton 41 Rubio +7
    General Election: Kasich vs. Clinton Quinnipiac Kasich 47, Clinton 39 Kasich +8
    General Election: Bush vs. Clinton Quinnipiac Clinton 43, Bush 44 Bush +1
    General Election: Trump vs. Sanders Quinnipiac Sanders 48, Trump 42 Sanders +6
    General Election: Cruz vs. Sanders Quinnipiac Sanders 49, Cruz 39 Sanders +10
    General Election: Rubio vs. Sanders Quinnipiac Sanders 47, Rubio 41 Sanders +6
    General Election: Kasich vs. Sanders Quinnipiac Sanders 45, Kasich 41 Sanders +4
    General Election: Bush vs. Sanders Quinnipiac Sanders 49, Bush 39 Sanders +10

    • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

  3. Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

    Thank you Kim Kemp — delighted to hear Tara Sutherland is on patrol in Garbelville. I recall her from the Brass Rail in Dredway, where she tended bar and kept order by confronting drunks with professional aplomb.

    Thank you Louis Bedrock, your translation is the best thing I’ve read on neurology since my namesake Bruce S. McEwen’s article on the hypocampus.

    • BB Grace February 18, 2016


      Let me apply this activism to Fort Bragg.

      Would I be a NIMBY full of stigma against the homeless and mentally ill if I kindly engaged with what appeared to Hospitality Empire rejects to passively suggest they get lost?

      Answer: YES!

    • LouisBedrock February 18, 2016

      This is a link to the chapter of PHANTOMS IN THE BRAIN that Rosa Montero writes about.

      Montero’sarticle is not available on line. It was published in EP[S] magazine of 25 November 2001. I saved the magazine because I wanted to translate the article one day. It took more than 14 years!

      This excerpt, in the original Spanish, was on line:

      I don’t imagine that your “tocayo”, Dr Bruce S. McEwen, is any relation. Many of his articles are on line.

      Thanks for the kind words.

      • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

        A 14-year translation — that’s eyeopening! I know a handful of Spanish words, y no mas. But some of my best friends are certified Spanish language court interpreters. Yet I translated a Spanish poem — I felt the versions I read in English had been too literal — so literal in fact they botched the title. Like the editors of Finnegans Wake who felt they had to shoot in that possessive apostrophe, when Mr. Joyce intended the plural injunction. So: “A Biography For The Use Of Birds”– this long drawn-out, wordy, verbose, unwieldy title for a poem, of all things — I ask you, Don Jorge, is that what you intended? I don’t think so. The idiom, which by the way was common in American English was nearly a proverb in its widespread usage, “for the birds,” was common as dirt, yet every translator has religiously chosen the stilted, artless superfluity over the graceful understatement… just casting around, trying to reel in your views, sir. Correct me if I’m wrong.

        • LouisBedrock February 18, 2016

          Translating is an art, not a science.

          Translating a poem like “Biografía para uso de los pájaros” by Jorge Carrera Andrade requires choices. You cannot retain the rhythm, rhyme scheme, and meaning, so you make choices. Your translation worked for me. I have the original in Spanish in an old dog-eared tome.

          I have no idea of Mr. Carrera’s intentions. I would ask him, but the inconsiderate lout died in 1978.

          It’s difficult to generalize about translators. However, I agree that “graceful understatement” is not in fashion anywhere having been displaced by flatulent hyperbole.

          • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

            My, what a fellow you are, Mr. Bedrock…

  4. BB Grace February 18, 2016

    RE: Why More Ortner?

    Because privatization isn’t what’s wrong, but what’s right with County mental health services.

    I enjoyed watching the BOS Feb 16 meeting, Kemper Report.

    The absence of County employees from HHSA to make public statements concerning the issues within the Kemper Report, which civilly pointed out the error of the County’s ways, leads me to believe that County employees put politics before the safety and delivery of services to the public. Why?

    To Mr. Marmon’s worst nightmare come true, RQMG has a bigger County role to play because Kemper Report essentially explained to the BOS that RQMG understands contract management and went above and beyond their contract/ or lack of contract, to serve the County despite the County employees and public* fighting them. Pinizzotto didn’t do OMG any favors, rather because of the connection and County employees arguments around Pinizzotto, Pinizzotto hurt OMG.

    My tin foil hat picked up a Gjerde, Shaw, Brown conspiracy to replace OMG with Shaw, who came off as a political pathological predator “dressed to make a killing” in I imagine what represented her “global/UN” idea of a cosmopolitain Mother Teresa for homeless she doesn’t serve because… she needs more money.. She said NOTHING about her boss.. Ortner, unlike the subcontractors with RQMG who praised RQMG. I believe that praise is justified and I think the winners from the Kemper Report are RQMG.

    Kemper wasn’t gushing over Anna, and you can see, she accepts the report.. but not really, because she’s got Gjerde as BOS Chair on her side fighting to STOP ORTNER NOW (expand her empire), afterall when you’ve pissed off most folks in Fort Bragg by buying Anna the Old Coast Hotel, why not shoot the moon and turn the Kemper Report to another opportunity for Anna to raise money? I’m sure Gjerde can appreciate that as Fort Bragg assumes more non tax paying residents.

    It was amazing to watch Mr. Woodhouse’s mental breakdown and recovery, or whatever that was.

    I enjoyed listening to each public speaker (besides Shaw) very much, though I would have appreciated Behavioral Health Advisory Board member Margie Handley giving another board member Wetzler’s letter and speaking up about Old Howard Hospital (I know Laz but anyways).

    What I don’t want to see in the County’s effort to implement Kemper Report recommendations is more of this bullying the public in the name of consensus or unity. Kemper exposed the “Big Stick”, and I hope the County puts that stick down. I’m so grateful to have Sheriff Allman stopping the BOS from making Mendo a police state in the name of mental health.

    • james marmon February 18, 2016

      RE: RQMC becoming a local monopoly. Cha Ching $$$$


      noun, plural monopolies.

      1. exclusive control of a commodity or service in a particular market, or a control that makes possible the manipulation of prices.
      Compare duopoly, oligopoly.

      2. an exclusive privilege to carry on a business, traffic, or service, granted by a government.

      3. the exclusive possession or control of something.

      4. something that is the subject of such control, as a commodity or service.

      5. a company or group that has such control.

      6. the market condition that exists when there is only one seller.

      “All of us are not always smarter than one of us, leaders need to distinguish between the wisdom of crowds and the madness of crowds.”

      ― Paul Gibbons, The Science of Successful Organizational Change: How Leaders Set Strategy, Change Behavior, and Create an Agile Culture

      • BB Grace February 18, 2016

        Monopoly: A game everyone who shops at Safeway is playing right now.

    • james marmon February 18, 2016

      “The third-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking with the majority. The second-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking with the minority. The first-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking.”

      A. A. Milne

      “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.”

      Mark Twain

  5. Harvey Reading February 18, 2016


    Just as bad, and with full constitutional authorization, is the very undemocratic electoral college, wherein each state has votes equal to its congressional representation, which means a vote for each senator.

    The senate is not apportioned according to population. As a result fifty of those electoral votes, from the 25 states with the smallest populations, are controlled by the approximately 16 percent of the population that resides in those states. That means the supposed “democratic” election results are pretty much thrown into the garbage. In a close election, this unbalanced system could put someone into office who lost the popular vote.

    Old news, I know, but praising adherence to the over-worshiped Constitution has its drawbacks. I’m all for a new constitution, one approved by a majority of the VOTERS in the country, doing away with minority rule, one with an amendment process that also requires only majority approval; not to mention laying down rules for congressional procedural processes in session rather than letting each body make its own internal rules. Letting small, backward states block what the majority wants must end.

    Enough of the tyranny of the minority.

    • Harvey Reading February 18, 2016

      By majority, I mean SIMPLE majority, not the minority rule that is concealed by the misleading term, super-majority.

  6. Harvey Reading February 18, 2016

    Re: The brain is a prodigious artifact. Its injuries may produce monsters; however, they may also produce gods and fantasies.

    Gods generally are monsters and fantasies can be monstrous as well.

    • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

      Monster of God is a book title by David Quamman, a wildlife biologist from Montana, focusing on man-eating predators, such as African lions, Siberian tigers, grizzly bears and Nile crocodiles. The croc gulping down some poor fool may look (to the individuals described in the article) like god snacking on ambrosia (food of the gods); sorta like Grendel in Beowulf, or Saturn Devouring His Children” by Goya.

      • BB Grace February 18, 2016

        Saturn Devouring His Children” by Goya.

        One of my Dad’s favorites.

        • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

          Robert Hughes’ bio of Goya smooths over the Saturn painting (found on a secluded wall in Goya’s last house after he died), but in his bio by Evan Connell, the focus falls on this superb depiction of the desperate fright a father feels when he sees his children poised to succeed him.

  7. Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

    Re: Locals On Patrol. This is the way of the future. Realignment, Proposition 47, and impending similar legislation means we are going to be living with more and more addicts and convicts on the street — not to mention the hopeless state of mental health services. It seems inevitable that we will all have to police our own communities from here on out. Tara Sutherland grasps this elementary writing on the wall, and she’s taking steps (literally) to make her community safer for the baby she’s carrying. Good job, Tara!

    • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

      Now that I think on it, this entire take-charge approach to community problems has a name. It’s called “The Humboldt Way,” a phrase I learned from Tara while drinking at the Brass Rail when she was on duty. In a world where silly twits are called awesome, and fools are lauded as sages, it’s hard to say how great this woman really is.

  8. LouisBedrock February 18, 2016

    —Nature abhors a moron.

    (H. L. Mencken)

    • Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

      And so do I.

  9. mr. wendal February 18, 2016

    re: “WHY MORE ORTNER?”

    OMG was unwilling to fulfill their part of the contract because there were no consequences. That shows that the culture of their business is such that they are untrustworthy. Why would the county want to go forward with them? I suspect that it may be to save face for county management. I have to say that I would have let go the county employees who were involved in this fiasco as it cost a couple of clients their lives and that is something that must be remembered when decisions are made.

    The difference between the comments by the different contractors and subcontractors at the meeting was stunning. Redwood was prepared and informative while the Hospitality Center presentation was a good example of why the adult mental health system is so horribly broken; she didn’t address any of the problems or speak with detail about anything except to say that they need $400,000 to perform the same duties that Redwood was able to perform for the children. When the county drops the Ortner contract they also must not allow the Hospitality Center to continue to try to provide services to the people on the coast. A real mental health group needs to be in charge, not an ineffective homeless center. I hope that Dan Gjerde and the other board members understand that and act on it. Giving Ortner and the Hospitality Center another chance after their abysmal service thus far is foolish at best and could be deadly. Sonya Nesch has proposed the best idea for going forward and may the BOS declare that at their next meeting regarding this subject.

    Will the BOS now admit that there is a fundamental problem with Mendocino County management; the library money has to be returned after the county illegally charged for things, the animal shelter is in uproar, the asphalt plant was fast-tracked (resulting in people having to leave their homes during production) and severe mental health service problems have long been ignored? Many people, including their own advisory boards, have brought these problems to their attention to no avail. The Grand Jury reports about these issues were also ignored, wasting a lot of time. There is no time to waste, but perhaps lives to save, by removing Ortner and their coastal subcontractor from the county’s mental health contract.

    • BB Grace February 18, 2016

      re: “OMG was unwilling to fulfill their part of the contract because there were no consequences.”

      That’s incorrect Mr. Wendal. The County’s contract with Ortner was under construction by former OMG employee and resigned County Mental Health Director Pinizzotto, who failed to implement MOUs/ reglations to ASOs. RQMG was proactive and arranged their business with MOUs with their sub contractors, which OMG was struggling with , not only the politics by the County employees who were not on the same page with Pinizzotto, but refused to work with OMG.

      When I attended the Mental Health Board meeting last April and the issue was about the Hospitality Center taking the Old Coast Hotel, no one from Ortner said anything. I don’t believe it matters to OMG where the County wants services, but it matters a great deal what kind of services, as OMG can provide a vast selection. The County has to know what it wants. Pinizzotto wanted to be a regulator without regulations until everything was in place. OMG trusted Pinizzotto. RQMG didn’t trust Pinizzotto. OMG went along to get along. RQMG rewrote their contracts.

      OMG repeatedly said they would do whatever the County wants. The County was in the wrong. It’s up to the County to make it right.

      Since RQMG now has a bigger role, the County, after finding a Contract Manager, can put Adult Mental health up for bid and see if anyone else bites or has more to offer than OMG.

      I believe Anna Shaw thinks that she can do what OMG can do and would like that opportunity, so I expect OMG to contiune to be subject to complaints as Mrs. Shaw made it clear that she is no fan of OMG and it seems visa versa.

      • james marmon February 18, 2016

        RE: More RQMC

        Just because we don’t see mentally ill children wandering the streets or their pictures posted on the “catch of the day” log doesn’t automatically mean that RQMC/RCS is doing a great job.

        I think there is a big misconception of who they are and what they really do.

        There really isn’t that many mentally ill children in our community, unless you believe in the philosophy of treating children with pharmaceuticals and therapy for demonstrating any age appropriate behaviors that annoy most adults, primarily teachers.

        RQMC/RCS took on the Transitional Age Youth(TAY) because they wanted more clients to bill Medi-Cal for, plain and simple. More “unduplicated persons served” (UPS) a very important measure.

        Child Welfare Service’s is basically their only resource for UPS. And, they bill the shit out of those kids already, especially if they are in foster care.

        Adult mental health is “needs” driven, Children’s mental health is “service driven”, apples and oranges folks. There is absolutely no shortage of available funding for providing services to children like there is with addressing adult needs. You just can’t send them home to mama.

        How do we know the Schraeder apparatus can make the transition from childhood to adulthood successfully? Who’s writing the instruction manual for that? Where’s RQMC Implementation Plan? Let’s not repeat ourselves and worry about these things later, after we just hand over a bunch of money and blind faith. That doesn’t work for us, have we learned?

        RQMC is not in any better position to take on the adult mental health system than the man in the moon is right now. Not unless they can somehow shift some of that funding from the children’s system of care and put it where it belongs, the adult system.

        “It is better to be divided by truth than to be united in error. It is better to speak the truth that hurts and then heals, than falsehood that comforts and then kills. It is better to be hated for telling the truth than to be loved for telling a lie. It is better to stand alone with the truth, than to be wrong with a multitude. It is better to ultimately succeed with the truth than to temporarily succeed with a lie.”

        -Adrian Rogers

        Slow down everyone, Think, Think. Think.

        • james marmon February 18, 2016

          OMG tried to follow RQMC’s “build it and they will come” philosophy and failed terribly. The services they sub-contracted out to Hospitality and Manzanita did not address the true needs of their clients, but they got services, nobody really knows what kind, but “any old service” will do I guess. (I’m going to refrain from making an Ana Shaw comment here).

          The same thing with children’s system of care, providing “any old services” is more important than addressing need, and as a result we will be hearing about having to pay back millions of dollars of audit exceptions created primarily by the children’s system of care and their overzealous pursuit to have every kid in the County in therapy, if they ever make that information available to the public.

          Unfortunately that truth or information will cast doubt upon RQMC, and we can’t have that. We need to ignore all negativity and just “move forward.”

          I think Scott Peterson should do a “we’ve got mental health services” video.

          • BB Grace February 18, 2016

            Who needs Scott Peterson when the real deal is funny as is?

        • BB Grace February 18, 2016

          Mr. Marmon, RQMG did not make an appeal to take over adult mental health.

          At the BOS meeting, the consensus appears that RQMG can be even better with County support, which they did not have with Pinizzotto, and that goes especially for OMG, except, this idea I got that Mrs. Shaw believes that she can do better. I seriously doubt that and agree with Mr. Wendal’s comment about OMG going and taking Hospitality Empire.

          RQMG and OMG are both ASOs, so to complain about one and not another, now that Pinizzotto is gone and the Kemper Report made pretty clear there were many “honest” mistakes (though I bet Pinizzotto’s ears are burning), with a contracting manager, the County (BOS) can assume it’s role as regulator, where, how, what, etc, for the ASOs to follow.

          The Shraeders came out the winners Mr. Marmon. Think. Stop digging that hole for 90 days. I’ll mark your words, and you can hope that I don’t really. I like the Shraeders. They’re not greedy people. Frankly, you have to be dedicated and invested to do what they’re doing. I don’t think they have an easy job, but I think they make the job better and the love they bring is priceless.

          My bet is that you would have enjoyed working with the Shraeders knowing that they have their business together better than the County.

          Meeting after meeting I watched them as I did on the BOS vid. They do not try to get away with anything. They are accountable and they let Mr. Kemper know what they didn’t agree with in his report, even though they looked good and took a risk of looking really bad. They give the facts and if Mendocino doesn’t like facts (which it appears is not popular) the Shraeders won’t stop doing their best because they are committed. It’s a shame there isn’t more money for the Shraeders.

          The Shraeders were aware the County didn’t have MOUs so they made sure their sub contractors did. They could have trusted Pinizzotto as Ortner did, or they did what they beleived to be the right thing anyways, and they got the MOUs.

          The sub contractors are the people dealing with the public, and they’re happy with RQMG. When workers are happy, something you might not have experienced much, the clients or consumers get a residual benefit which appears the Shraeders get that too.

          I’m curious where this contracting manager is going to come from.

          • james marmon February 18, 2016

            With all the money RQMC has to work with, who would complain. Everyone is fat and sassy right now,

            “Concentrated power is not rendered harmless by the good intentions of those who create it.”

            Milton Friedman

            As for the Contract Manager

            Thanks to people like you, the County has very little bargaining power for negotiating with RQMC. The only person with near the political clout is Carmel Angelo, and I doubt she could maintain her position if she should cross the Schraeders. Could you imagine the public outrage. Holding them accountable would be considered child abuse, call CPS, call Sheriff Tom, call the militia!!!!

            • james marmon February 18, 2016

              BB Grace, you are borg, part of the Redwood Community. As the RQMC employee elegantly stated at the BOS meeting “your roots are intertwined with other redwoods in the forest, you are strong, you stand together, you have become “one” with the community.”

              I’ll keep my roots to myself right now if you don’t mind.

              Lets try it this way, you don’t seem to understand what I am saying, but you sure make me think a lot.

              “Individualism is the idea that the individual’s life belongs to him and that he has an inalienable right to live it as he sees fit, to act on his own judgment, to keep and use the product of his effort, and to pursue the values of his choosing. It’s the idea that the individual is sovereign, an end in himself, and the fundamental unit of moral concern. This is the ideal that the American Founders set forth and sought to establish when they drafted the Declaration and the Constitution and created a country in which the individual’s rights to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness were to be recognized and protected.”

              “Collectivism is the idea that the individual’s life belongs not to him but to the group or society of which he is merely a part, that he has no rights, and that he must sacrifice his values and goals for the group’s “greater good.” According to collectivism, the group or society is the basic unit of moral concern, and the individual is of value only insofar as he serves the group. As one advocate of this idea puts it: “Man has no rights except those which society permits him to enjoy. From the day of his birth until the day of his death society allows him to enjoy certain so-called rights and deprives him of others; not . . . because society desires especially to favor or oppress the individual, but because its own preservation, welfare, and happiness are the prime considerations.”


              People like me defy collectivism and that is why I am currently being deprived many of my so called unalienable rights by the so called Redwood community, especially by Bryan Lowery, the liar.

              The traditional American philosophy teaches that Man, The Individual, is endowed at birth with rights which are unalienable because given by his Creator.

              I my dear BB Grace, was born on the 4th of July, 1954, and I take this shit extremely serious.

              “In short it is the greatest absurdity to suppose it in the power of one or any number of men at the entering into society, to renounce their essential natural rights, or the means of preserving those rights when the great end of civil government from the very nature of its institution is for the support, protection and defense of those very rights: the principal of which as is before observed, are life liberty and property. If men through fear, fraud or mistake, should in terms renounce and give up any essential natural right, the eternal law of reason and the great end of society, would absolutely vacate such renunciation; the right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty, it is not in the power of Man to alienate this gift, and voluntarily become a slave-”

              Resolutions of Town of Boston, 1772 (“The Rights of The Colonists, . . . “)

              • BB Grace February 19, 2016

                Mr. Marmon,

                First and foremost, I respect, admire, appreciate and trust your genuine compassion and investment in education, career and personal interest of, by and for Children’s welfare.

                With all you have posted on the AVA, I do not find your “individualism” to be preventing you from finding a role besides attacking those who arecurrently contracted and employed in Children’s welfare.

                If I may put it this way, It is not the man who succeeds that makes a difference in the world. It is the man who crashed and lost everything after success to rebuild his life that makes the difference because these individuals to not stop to blame and accuse those that witnessed the fall, be they part or not, but rose above the fall.

                I’m wanting to see you rise above your fall; However, I get the idea from your posts, you are retired, thus not seeking employment or a business, or a volunteer opportunity. You are not seeking any opportunity to participate in your passion, Children’s Welfare, instead, you “rage against the machine” that HURT YOU.

                That’s understandable.

                YET, because Mr. Marmon, you can go on and on about RQMG but, the Kemper Report, which you claimed was excellent, made RQMG the winner.

                Mr. Marmon, Please believe me when I tell you that I believe it takes very special people to work with parents. I couldn’t do it because I care too much if you can understand. Witnessing children, animal, parents suffering, abuse victims beyond my ability to really help is a form of torture to me, so I admire, respect and appreciate those who do their best with what they’ve got and however they can legally.

                Your restraining order will shortly end. Will you continue to have excuses to not be involved with your passion, or will you rise above your fall and embrace your passion?

                • james marmon February 19, 2016

                  Kool-Aid Day

                  “Typically, the Jonestown Massacre has been spun by our liberal ruling class as some sort of religious episode. This is because Jones and his followers worshiped the same thing liberals do: coercive collectivism.”

                  “So lift your glasses of Kool-Aid in pride, moonbats, and toast a historic milestone in the development of collectivism.”


                  “Now consider the 900 plus members of the People’s Temple founded by Jim Jones. The members drawn to this cult were seemingly purposeless social outcasts. The result: mass suicide via Kool-Aid. By way of metaphor, what Jim Jones offered to his followers was an ideological elixir—a Collectivist Kool-Aid, if you will.”

                  “The Collectivist Kool-Aid is Bernie Sanders’ drink-of-choice. He is intoxicated by the desire for “unity,” and he has been stumbling toward the domineering notion of “strength in numbers” for decades. But now belligerent Bernie is on stage for all to witness. And like a drunk hooligan, Bernie is publicly hurling glass bottles at, and urinating on, two centuries of historical lessons and economic ingenuity.”


                  Lee Kemper did a great job identifying our mental health contract deficiencies, but his solution on how to address the deficiencies made it clear to me that he was a collectivist as well, he talked about our system being a machine and that it could only survive and be successful with total support from everyone. “All for one, one for all.” “It takes a village.” and so on and so on.

                  Sheriff Tom Allman took a different approach, it was more like Individualism. He told the board straight out, the solution to the problem lies with all the elected officials and not from the machine. He asked them to become leaders not followers “get back into the driver’s seat,” his very words.

                  Guess what they did instead? The nurse, our very own Ratched, suggested that she mix up some extra servings of Kool-Aid and distribute to everyone who was somehow missed, and that the Sheriff and Doctor Trotter and associates receive double servings. They’ve been way out of line lately with all that unsolicited independent thought they’ve been exhibiting.

                  For people like me who are immune to the Kool-Aid, a bullet to the head, or a lobotomy.

                  The “People’s Temple” lives on in Mendocino County, the birthplace of the coercive collectivism movement in America. Better known as
                  Project MKUltra.

                  • BB Grace February 19, 2016

                    Collectivism usually complains about how much people earn or not in the idea of equality.

                    Most who follow indiviualism really don’t care what the other guys makes but more about it being done legally, because that’s the hard part.

                • james marmon February 19, 2016

                  “Your restraining order will shortly end. Will you continue to have excuses to not be involved with your passion, or will you rise above your fall and embrace your passion?”

                  I am educated and a independent thinker Ms. BB Grace, In their mind (singular) I am a danger to the collective. The Agency made it clear to me that I had no opinion regarding children’s safety and tried to coerce me into voluntarily relinquishing my responsibilities over to the collective. They wanted me to be more like you and the Board of Supervisors, like Lemmings to the sea, if you will.

                  What the collective doesn’t understand, is that they need people like me. To avoid the phenomenon known as “groupthink.” We’re here for their survival, not to destroy them.

                  “Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people, in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome.” (like outlawing videos on the AVA).


                  • BB Grace February 19, 2016

                    And to your mind, their collective is a danger to your independent thinking.

                    How do we constructively break this stalemate so that you can become a constructive part of the Children Welfare solution?

                    I had a brother that was quadplegic, C3. I think I may have told you about what was called Buzz’s House. It was a group home for disabled TAY, motorcycle accidents, my brother had been shot in the neck, things like that.. My parents ran the home for a couple of years before they bought him a monkey and life system, enabling him to be independent.. He wound up opening a concession stand on the Truckee River.. But I learned through his experiences that there are really neat jobs like the ones my parents took, not that they needed the money, they didn’t.. they had a need to be near my brother, and I’m proud of them for that. Buzz’s House was not County or State but private and housed 21 people, plue it had a very nice 2 bedroom for the live in provider.

                    You would be great in a position like that because you need to be independent thinking.

  10. Bruce McEwen February 18, 2016

  11. Bruce McEwen February 19, 2016

    Puts me in mind of the near-sighted priest who converted the penguins, when Capt. Scott took w/ S. Pole.

    • LouisBedrock February 19, 2016

      Pier Paolo Pasolini made a movie about priests sent by Saint Francis to convert hawks and sparrows to Christianity.

      Makes sense. Damned Christians sent missionaries backed up by the army everywhere on the planet.

      Mr. McEwen, master of the written language, surely you possess the eloquence to make your points without videos.

  12. james marmon February 19, 2016


    “Freethought holds that individuals should not accept ideas proposed as truth without recourse to knowledge and reason. Thus, freethinkers strive to build their opinions on the basis of facts, scientific inquiry, and logical principles, independent of any logical fallacies or intellectually limiting effects of authority, confirmation bias, cognitive bias, conventional wisdom, popular culture, prejudice, sectarianism, tradition, urban legend, and all other dogmas. Regarding religion, freethinkers hold that there is insufficient evidence to scientifically validate the existence of supernatural phenomena.”

  13. Mike February 20, 2016

    Just seeing the reductionistic “Transcendental Brain” note. Here’s some of the noteworthy university based research, and the signs are not as noted in the Brain report posted here:

    Davidson said that the results unambiguously showed that meditation activated the trained minds of the monks in significantly different ways from those of the volunteers. Most important, the electrodes picked up much greater activation of fast-moving and unusually powerful gamma waves in the monks, and found that the movement of the waves through the brain was far better organized and coordinated than in the students. The meditation novices showed only a slight increase in gamma wave activity while meditating, but some of the monks produced gamma wave activity more powerful than any previously reported in a healthy person, Davidson said.

    The monks who had spent the most years meditating had the highest levels of gamma waves, he added. This “dose response” — where higher levels of a drug or activity have greater effect than lower levels — is what researchers look for to assess cause and effect.

    In previous studies, mental activities such as focus, memory, learning and consciousness were associated with the kind of enhanced neural coordination found in the monks. The intense gamma waves found in the monks have also been associated with knitting together disparate brain circuits, and so are connected to higher mental activity and heightened awareness, as well.

    Davidson’s research is consistent with his earlier work that pinpointed the left prefrontal cortex as a brain region associated with happiness and positive thoughts and emotions. Using functional magnetic resonance imagining (fMRI) on the meditating monks, Davidson found that their brain activity — as measured by the EEG — was especially high in this area.

    Davidson concludes from the research that meditation not only changes the workings of the brain in the short term, but also quite possibly produces permanent changes. That finding, he said, is based on the fact that the monks had considerably more gamma wave activity than the control group even before they started meditating. A researcher at the University of Massachusetts, Jon Kabat-Zinn, came to a similar conclusion several years ago.

    • LouisBedrock February 24, 2016


      Informative, thoughtful, and fascinating comment.

      Nothing in your comment contradicts Ms. Montero’s article, the chapter in Ramachandran’s book entitled “God and The Limbic System” which is the basis for Ms. Montero’s article, or reductive materialism.

      Louis Bedrock

  14. Debra Keipp February 23, 2016

    Good article on State of Jefferson – my old neighbs in Humboldt County!

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