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Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, June 27, 2017

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JUDY WAGGONER’S large family and her numerous friends gathered at Navarro last Saturday to remember her. And everyone there began their memories of this remarkable woman with versions of, “She was the best-natured person I’ve ever known.” Judy’s sorrows were many, and came with years of painful, immobilizing illness, and yet none of us could remember a single angry word or so much as a hint of self-pity from her. And what a worker she was before she was waylaid by the diabetes that eventually killed her. Judy did everything from postmistressing the Navarro Post Office to house cleaning, and in between she was essential to the lives of her grandchildren from their infancy on. Raised as the only girl in a house of rambunctious male brothers and cousins, all of them wholly committed to sports, Judy also became a dominant athlete, starring in basketball and softball at Anderson Valley High School. Our family has always been fond of and close to the Waggoner-Summit families, who we met soon after arriving in Boonville in 1970. Judy, along with her formidable brothers, Ted and Mick, helped us ride herd on a consignment of — we’ll pause here to reach for the contemporary euphemism — “at risk youth,” aka budding criminals, while recalling that Judy could dead lift a juvenile delinquent as easily as we might pick up a pair of tennis shoes. As a model of grace under crushing travail this lady could not be beat. For many of us, for all us Andersons certainly, Judy’s passing is a death in the family.

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ROSS MURRAY MEMORIAL SERVICE, July 1, 2017. Graveside Service at 11am at Evergreen Cemetery, AV Way, Boonville With Honor Salute by American Legion Post 385. Reception to follow at AV Senior Center/Vets Building. Sandwich platters provided. Please bring salad or dessert to share. For more info call Susan McClure at 895-3637.

Murray coming out of a vintage B-17 at a Vets event in Ukiah in 2015

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On 6/24/2017 around 10:26 PM the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office was advised by Cal Fire Dispatch of a reported boating collision on Lake Mendocino that possibly involved one deceased person and numerous other parties injured. Responding Deputies learned the incident occurred a short distance away from the North Boat Ramp. There were initial reports of persons possibly fleeing the scene in a white sedan but at least some of these persons were later found to be possibly leaving to seek medical attention for injuries sustained in the collision. The Sheriff's Office was told there were two boats involved in the incident, both are pictured below. One boat may have had as many as 7 persons on board while the second boat had three persons on board at the time of the incident. Reports indicate one of the boats had just left the north boat ramp dock as the other boat was approaching the area of the dock when they collided. One person, Miguel Corona, 26 years of age, from Ukiah sustained major injuries and was pronounced deceased at the scene when first responders arrived. Four other persons involved in the collision sought medical treatment for injuries ranging from minor to moderate. The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office Detective Unit is actively investigating this case and is being assisted by the Yolo County Sheriff's Office Marine Patrol Unit. This investigation is looking into the possibility of whether or not alcohol played a factor in the collision, what significance darkness and speed of the boats might have played in the collision, and whether or not the driver of one boat might have fled the scene, as had been rumored initially. The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office is requesting anyone who may have witnessed the actual incident, witnessed boating activity of the two boats prior to the incident, or other pertinent information to please contact the Mendocino County Sheriff's Dispatch Center at 707-463-4086 or the tip line at 707-234-2100.

Top: 2002 23-foot' Malibu Wakesetter, black with digital camouflage and black sound tower

Bottom: 1982 23-foot Century Cuddy Cabin, Blue/Tan/White

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SPEAKING OF COPS, our cop, deputy Craig Walker, with whom I enjoyed a brief chat at high school graduation last week, said he hoped to be off desk duty in Ukiah and back on patrol in The Valley inside “a coupla months.” I said other than that incompetent attempt to burglarize Steve Wood’s office in downtown Boonville last month, our “criminal element” seems to also be on the inactive list. The deputy, without elaborating, said there were “some things needing attention.” Deputy Walker, like the legendary Deputy Squires he has succeeded, manages, Argus-like, to see everything without being here.

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DAVE SEVERN'S ON THE CASE! Supervisor John McCowen called: “I am told a ‘roll of shag carpet’ is impeding salmonid passage at the confluence of Anderson Creek and the Navarro. I am told this is the location of a popular swimming hole. Do you know if the immediate area of the confluence is accessible by vehicle? I am hoping to help coordinate removal of the obstruction. Thank you.”

SEVERN: “There is a somewhat precarious road on what used to be called Shenoa but is now The Land run by female orgasm people. They are nice but there is a combo-ed gate. I go to the spot you refer to often but not in the last two weeks. Back then there was a group of campers with at least five kids hanging out. I didn't bother them but Anderson Creek seemed to be flowing fine at the time. It is not a popular swimming hole, though Goldeneye Winery gives access through their vineyard to employees. River goers, especially the kids, like to dam the flow to make deeper pools. They usually just use rocks. I'll check it out and deal with whatever I find. I'll let you know what's up.”

SEVERN AGAIN, POST-INVESTIGATION: ”You must have gotten your report from an airplane view. I'm surprised it didn't report a green shag rug.

It is an historical fact that Anderson Creek suffers massive summer algae from nutrient run-off compliments from the invasive wine industry.

At the confluence of Anderson and Rancheria Creeks, where it opens up to more sun light, algae blooms are prolific. That is apparently what someone thought was a rug. I've attached photos to show the algae, which can be viewed on-line at

AND THE LATEST report is that the biologist did not see the carpet in the stream but heard about it from a friend.

THE FRIEND was probably a bright lighter in town for the Sierra Nevada World Music Festival....even so, how stoned must you be to confuse strings of algae with shag carpeting?

SUPERVISOR McCOWEN sent along his thanks and added a gratuitous plug for MSWMA (Mendocino Solid Waste Management Authority), which neither manages solid waste nor has authority, being another of the endless alphabet soup of local agencies that function mainly to provide good paying jobs for the people who run them:

"Thanks to Dave Severn for a quick and comprehensive response. I got a call from a Fish and Wildlife warden who had gotten a call from a local citizen, who was described to me as a retired biologist, reporting the non-existent shag carpet. I'm glad it was a false alarm but it’s a bit of a concern that a biologist mistook an algae bloom for a shag carpet! I had already contacted Louisa Morris, General Manager of MSWMA, to arrange for cleanup, but wanted to get an idea of the access. When I spoke to Louisa she immediately agreed that MSWMA could handle it, and without knowing the access conditions, she said they would deal with it no matter what. I know you like to take shots at MSWMA, but our creeks and roadsides would be a lot dirtier without them.

“MSWMA was formed in 1990 by the County and the cities of Ukiah, Fort Bragg and Willits and provides countywide services more efficiently and cost effectively than the individual jurisdictions could do on their own. MSWMA is funded by grants that it obtains and by a surcharge on each ton of solid waste generated in the county. MSWMA was instrumental in starting local recycling programs and specializes in household hazardous waste collection, including the Hazmobile which holds regular collections around the county. MSWMA also obtains state grants to fund free tire recycling events countywide.

“AND GETTING BACK to the algae masquerading as shag carpet, if there had been a carpet in the creek, MSWMA would have removed it and disposed of it at no additional charge. Since 1992 MSWMA has taken on the task of cleaning up illegal roadside dumps, including several locations off Mountain View Road and many others around the county where thoughtless people have not just illegally dumped garbage, furniture, and appliances, but have gone out of their way to dump it down steep hillsides, sometimes winding up in the creek. In many cases, if MSWMA were not cleaning up illegal dump sites they would not be getting cleaned up at all. MSWMA also participates in most of the organized cleanups that take place around the county, either by sending a crew, picking up the trash, paying for disposal or all of the above.

“FINALLY, MSWMA provides independent analysis and oversight of many of the solid waste franchise contracts that local jurisdictions have with private companies that have been granted monopolies in the areas in which they operate. In most cases, without MSWMA, there would be no effective counterbalance to the private companies who naturally seek to increase their profits at the expense of the ratepayers.

“PS: You probably know that Ms. Morris has now given notice (for the second time) and MSWMA is in search of a new General Manager.”

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THE MORE THINGS CHANGE… The Vagrancy Act 1824 was an Act of Parliament of the United Kingdom that made it an offence to sleep rough or beg. Anyone in England and Wales found to be homeless or to be trying to cadge subsistence money could be arrested. Contemporary critics, including William Wilberforce, condemned the Act for being a catch-all offence because it did not consider the circumstances as to why an individual might find himself in such a predicament.

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DOES ANYBODY OUT THERE know what this concrete structure, near the junction of Highways 128 and 1, is a remnant of?

(photo by Annie Kalantarian)

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The Elk Volunteer Fire Department invites you to its 13th annual Summer BBQ to be held Saturday, July 29, from noon to 4 p.m. at the Greenwood Community Center on Highway 1 in downtown Elk.

Department members and friends are preparing to serve up grilled tri-tip, smoked chicken and portabella mushroom entrees, along with beans, garden salad, bread, homemade dessert and coffee. Enjoy all you can eat for a donation of $20 for adults and $10 for kids 7-12 (6 and under free). And, as always, Elk’s famous Margaritas will be available, along with beer, wine and soft drinks.

Emergency vehicles and equipment will be on display at the BBQ. Kids can meet Smokey the Bear and play in the portable pond. Weather permitting, you can inspect CalStar and REACH helicopters and greet their crews. And throughout the day, music by Wild Elk will keep things lively.

There will be a raffle featuring items donated by local inns, merchants and community members. Raffle tickets are a bargain at $2 each or 6 for $10 and are available now at the Elk Store, the Elk Garage, Queenie’s Roadhouse Café, Bridget Dolan’s Pub and at the BBQ. You don’t need to be present to win.

Serving the Elk community and providing mutual aid to the Anderson Valley for 61 years, the EVFD has 17 volunteers, 6 of whom are Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs). The department maintains a fleet of 7 firefighting vehicles of mixed type and an ambulance located at 4 stations spread out over a large, 55 square-mile service district.

The annual BBQ generates critical funds to maintain the department and its equipment. Please support the volunteers who help you in emergencies. But kindly leave the dogs at home.

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The response to the Community Poster Project has been very heartening. Visit Lauren's to see over 40 powerful and charming illustrations of community solidarity. The deadline for accepting posters has been extended for a week to the 30th of June. Please bring your completed work to Lauren's, where there is a box to receive finished posters. On July 4th the whole collection will be moved to the Fairgrounds kiosk for the day, then returned to Lauren's for the balance of July. It's not too late to display your vision of a community united. "Construimos puentes, no paredes! We build bridges, not walls!"

Steve Wood


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ON THE NAVARRO, June 22, 2017

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We are sponsoring a free CERT (Community Emergency Response Training) class in Boonville on August 12, 19 & 26 at the Anderson Valley Fire Department. It is co-sponsored by the Office of Emergency Services for Mendocino County. It will run for three consecutive Saturdays from 8:30 – 5:30 pm.

The CERT training is an engaging way to learn disaster preparedness. It combines basic information with hands on activities and drills. You learn survival skills, rescuer safety, team work, fire safety and suppression, basic disaster medical operations and light search and rescue. It’s fire season – be ready!

Anyone interested in registering, or if they just want more information, they can call 462-1959. The classes are free. Mike Carter, our volunteer CERT Coordinator, will be teaching all three Saturdays.

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PRIOR TO 1967, when there were still standards of public behavior, blind people might appear with seeing eye dogs in stores and restaurants, and very few of them. But now, with “comfort dogs” taking the place of prayer beads, and millions of people driving around with stuffed animals, and much of America only a scream away from total meltdown, the solipsistic sectors of our wacky population now feel free to inflict themselves in many new ways, right down to hauling their animals with them into coffee shops and eating places.

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MENDOCINO COUNTY WARNS Assembly Bill 1250 Would Significantly Erode County's Ability to Provide Local Services for the Most Vulnerable


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EXCERPTED FROM the "Some Noise" Podcast, June 23, 2017. Producer/Host: Najib Aminy.

Najib Aminy: Mark Scaramella is a vocal opponent of the wine industry. In fact the Advertiser also has that reputation. To put it bluntly, it's a very polarizing newspaper. Whereas the credo for the New York Times is ‘All the news that's fit to print,’ and the Washington Post is about how democracy dies in darkness, the AVA, as it's known locally, ‘Hasta La Victoria Siempre,’ and, ‘Fanning the flames of discontent.’ Like grapevines in the valley, there is no shortage of discontent, at least in the Advertiser. Whether it is fact, fabricated, or hyperbole, it is part of the charm and character of the paper. But should you find yourself behind the crosshairs (sic) of the publisher and editor Bruce Anderson then it's hardly flattering and it's been known to flirt with being outright libelous. Sue me, Anderson will say, I don't have much money anyway. Go ahead.

HOLD IT RIGHT THERE, NAJIB: Fabricated? Citations, please. And I've never said, "Go ahead and sue me." When I make an error of fact I correct it, or lend the person making the correction all the space he needs to do it. What I have said is that my critics claim they don't sue me because I don't have any money. Or my critics say they don't sue me because my wealthy nephew will pay my legal bills. The true reason people don't sue is they are incorrect, haven’t been libeled, which a lawsuit would demonstrate to the world. It's annoying that this Najib kid casually libels me by suggesting I fabricate stories. The problem with John Cesano, and lots of people, is they are unable to separate fact from opinion. They read an opinion they don't like such as "The wine industry is a chemically-dependent, heavy-industrial, labor exploiting enterprise that does lots of damage to the environment," and someone like the blustery wine shill quoted below deliberately mistakes that opinion for "libel."

POLARIZING? Boo-Hoo, and what exactly does that silly term even mean? That we don’t climb into a hot tub with fifty pinot drinkers? The Press Democrat polarizes me, as does the New York Times.

John Cesano: "I don't read it anymore. Because I don't want to get angry. I just pretend it doesn't exist and do my job. I so wish we could work with them. I wish that they were responsible.”

POOR BABY. We’re all so happy you spare yourself the anguish.

Aminy: That’s John Cesano again, Executive Director of the Anderson Valley Winegrowers Association.

Cesano: "Sometimes it's jealousy based. Our wineries are diverse but they are visible. And a successful visible industry always will garner some jealousy among folks. They become a target. I think unfairly. I don't know if it's part of a larger cultural context but the world seems a little more angry today than it did yesterday.”

Aminy: I guess my question to you is what is the core of what's driving that?”

Cesano: “I have no idea. Conflict sells papers. I think it's that simple. And manufactured conflict works just as well as genuine conflict. It's easier to — I guess it's easier to write lies than to do actual reporting. The AVA, as liberal as it is, is no different than the worst hate-mongering, right-wing conservative media outlet, propaganda arm, The very thing they hate is the exact thing they are.”

Aminy: “Scaramella has been known to stay much closer to the facts, though there's no second-guessing on where he stands.” … And so on.

GEEZ, such negativity from the spokesman for such a wonderful, much misunderstood industry!

I CONSIDERED driving down to Philo to slap this guy upside his cork, but wound up talking to him Monday morning. I asked him to give me an example of un-facts. He cited a blast from David Severn. I said that was an opinion piece. Wine Babble said it contained two errors of fact. Already bored, I said they will stay errors of fact unless you correct them without conceding that they were in fact errors. I said we’d be happy to print nice things about the wine industry, even though every other media already does that. (cf the Press Democrat) Cesano told me three nice things: The AV Winegrowers have given $2200 to the local school district’s educational foundation; they gave $20,000 to the Health Center; and $10,000 to the AV Housing Association.

WHICH is the least they can do, but without quibbling over industry parsimony, I’ll repeat what I’ve said various ways many times: There’s a difference in industry behavior and responsibility between the wine people who live here and who can be approached directly with complaints, and outside corporations and zillionaires whose only interest in the Anderson Valley is to exploit it.

AS A PERSONAL FRIEND of many of the pioneer AV wine growers — Deron Edmeades, Jed Steele, Tony Husch, Al Green, Michel Salgues (Roederer), and even, kinda, Mary Elke and John Scharffenberger, I happen to know that privately many of them agree with much of our criticism, little of which, by the way, is countered by the wine businesses who claim we libel them, preferring to whine privately about our coverage.

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The free preview period is aimed at making the public more familiar with the new Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit system.

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, “The Boss asks me, ‘Ever see a dahlia this grand, Little Dog?’ So I say, ‘As a matter of fact I have — right next door at the Redwood Drive-in.’ He stomps off and says over his shoulder, ‘"For a little dog, you sure are a big downer’."

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In response to questions regarding the total cost of the Willits Bypass Project, District Director Matt Brady has the following statement: "Although the Willits Bypass is one of the most important interregional projects for the north coast, eliminating delays on U.S. Highway 101 and easing congestion for residents, the project did have its challenges. Bypass construction costs, including the associated right-of-way, mitigation, and relinquishment projects, did rise to $300 million as protests, permitting issues and bird-nesting season delayed the project. This was previously shared at public California Transportation Commission meetings in 2014 and through press coverage. Support costs including staff and consultants added another $159 million, bringing the total cost to $459 million. Those support costs include assessing the environmental impacts of over 30 potential routes, the development of the most extensive and detailed mitigation plan in Caltrans' history, and then rewriting large sections of that mitigation plan to resolve issues with evolving requirements from permitting agencies. Caltrans did mistakenly report $300 million as the total cost of the project as part of our opening day ceremony, however, as indicated previously, it only included construction costs, mitigation, etc., which was not the "total" cost, and this was an oversight on our part."

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CATCH OF THE DAY, June 26, 2017

Alexander, Allard, Eaton, Engkabo

BRIAN ALEXANDER, Sunnyvale/Willits. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, under influence.

SOLOMON ALLARD, Ukiah. Domestic battery.

BILLY EATON, Willits. Taking vehicle without owner’s consent, probation revocation.

TERRI ENGKABO, Covelo. Vandalism, suspended license.

Keator, Lain, Phillips, Schuler

BENJAMIN KEATOR, Redwood Valley. County parole violation, probation revocation.

JOHN LAIN, Ukiah. Failure to appear.

MELODY PHILLIPS, Ukiah. Resisting.

JAKE SCHULER, Willits. Probation revocation.

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by Binoy Kampmark

The security guard grinned at the bag with rheumy eyes. It had already begun to ache, the shoulder strap held down by writing material and a bottle of water. “Thank you, sir!”, came the emphatic note of approval. The bag had passed the test, as did its owner, who was frisked for anything unduly metallic. Nothing was to go wrong at this San Francisco Pride event, part of a weekend celebration that is a statement of assertion, defiance and sex.

Across the Civic Centre were tents and stalls: face and body painting; events for the gay community; information for the evening kick-on. There was some material on LGBT events, though historical information was sparse. (History tends to be, not so much another country here as another galaxy).

Sparse as well were the clothing items, which were less matters of fashion than anti-fashion, a poke-in-the-eye confidence starring flopping genitals with scrotal assuredness, painted nipples and clamps. There also seemed to be a high correlation between age and sheer, unshackled nakedness, leaving aside the rainbow ribbons, straps or cock socks.

The more weather worn veterans, brandishing their sugar alcoholic drinks, were very keen to let everyone know that this was their day of the year: nothing on, and thank you very much. But their nude forms belied an almost robotic routine: it was simply part of the course (as, indeed, it was the cause) to go uncovered for this occasion. To have been clothed would have not just seemed unthinkable, but obscene, a tribute to the nasty set of conformity.

Such an absence of wear revealed bodies milk white and translucent, pinking in the California sun. Dark shiny black figures, chocolate mixes, and tanned flesh reveal this to be a show of bods, rods and mammary glands, an aesthetic tyranny that is only challenged by the occasional hefty buffoon heaving himself about in torn underwear, or an enormous woman with a rump so expansive it signals boldness.

Other than that, it is an arms race of flesh and sexual projection. “Who is going to get sex tonight?” trumpets a hip hop artist inquiringly of his listening audience. Hoots are emitted and hands shoot up enthusiastically.

Such an event also provides a platform for ham activism, which tends to come a distant second to the entertainment value people seek. This is despite such calls as that from Robin Tyler writing in the Lesbian News in January 2017 in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s inauguration: “Every Pride event in the USA and internationally should not have a Pride ‘Parade’ this year”, instead focusing on a “March against ignorance, prejudice, racism, misogyny, homophobia, climate change, nuclear threat, in other words, against Donald Trump!”

Musicians duly announce that they are “taking a stand against fascism in America”. Across a world, a “war is being waged on trans people.” Another act is far less political, and gets straight to the flesh in an uncomplicated fashion. “We want the hot bodies on stage now!” goes a band claiming to be the “hottest act in the US”. Do not let modesty muddy pride: if they don’t convince themselves, who will?

Each year is always marked by the same theme: love, sweet love. It is a search for the elusive perfection of harmony and self, battling insecurity by flaunting, screaming and hoping for the best. Songs about bullying and suicide are sung to ward off the demons who always threaten to crumple the vulnerable.

Behind the tolerance is a certain rehearsed, even strained quality. These are not safe times, though a Pride event is always edgy in the name of the tolerant persuasion. The policing hand is firm. “Safety monitors” roam. Since 2016, security measures for the San Francisco Pride Celebration have involved the discouraging of large unwieldy bags. A screening process was also implemented.

After the exhortative performances to tolerance conclude, and the flesh seems that much stretched, the time comes to veer through the Tenderloin, where the homeless and drug addled prove indifferent to the shaking noise of the Pride event. Identity politics in this part of SF is indifferent, even nonexistent. There is no directed noise in the name of sexual politics here but rambles of the non-existent life that fail to hit their mark. A bit of building graffiti makes a solemn promise: “World ends at 10; highlights at 11.”

(Binoy Kampmark was a Commonwealth Scholar at Selwyn College, Cambridge. He lectures at RMIT University, Melbourne. Email: Courtesy,

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APRIL 28, 1960 — Heard Thelonious Monk at Blackhawk in San Francisco last night. He played nonobjective funeral dirges. Later, at intermission, saw him walking very fast down a dark street and around a corner, as if he had to get somewhere fast to make a connection, and get back to the Hawk for the next set — Reminded me of how I escaped from funeral of foster father in mourning clothes and went flying away on a bicycle, down free spring lanes… .

— Lawrence Ferlinghetti

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by James Kunstler

When I think of the Democratic Party these days, the image instantly comes to mind of little Linda Blair playing the demon-possessed child in the classic horror movie, The Exorcist (1973), most particularly the scene in which she spews a stream of pea soup-like projectile vomit into the face of kindly old Max von Sydow, as Father Merrin, the priest come to rescue her.

The pea soup represents the sort of ideology that the Democratic Party has spewed out in recent years — a toxic mush of racial identity politics, contempt for men, infantile entitlement tantrums, corporate whoring, and a demonic quest for war with the Russian Federation. Father Merrin, the priest, stands for incorruptible American men, who have been, at last, killed off by this barrage of diabolical idiocy.

Can you think of a single figure in the Democratic faction who dares to oppose the lethal nonsense this party has been sponsoring and spewing? Who are its leaders? Chuck Schumer in the Senate — a mendacious errand boy for Wall Street? Nancy Pelosi in the House, who wears her cluelessness like a laminate of pancake makeup. Got anyone else? Uncle Joe (Biden)? That’s rich. Bernie? (Looks like his wife is about to be indicted on a federal bank fraud rap for running a small Vermont college into the ground. Whoops.)

Who else you got? Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York. I live near Albany, the state capital, and I can assure you that Governor Cuomo is ripely loathed and detested by anyone who has had actual dealings with him. Insiders tell me he makes Nixon look like Mr. Rogers. And this is apart from the fact that he seems to stand for nothing.

I registered as a Democrat in 1972 — largely because good ole Nixon was at the height of his power (just before his fall, of course), and because he was preceded as party leader by Barry Goldwater, who, at the time, was avatar for the John Birch Society and all its poisonous nonsense. The Democratic Party was still deeply imbued with the personality of Franklin Roosevelt, with a frosting of the recent memory of John F. Kennedy and his brother Bobby, tragic, heroic, and glamorous. I was old enough to remember the magic of JFK’s press conferences — a type of performance art that neither Bill Clinton or Barack Obama could match for wit and intelligence — and the charisma of authenticity that Bobby projected in the months before that little creep shot him in the kitchen of the Ambassador Hotel. Even the lugubrious Lyndon Johnson had the heroic quality of a Southerner stepping up to abolish the reign of Jim Crow.

Lately, people refer to this bygone era of the 1960s as “the American High” — and by that they are not talking about smoking dope (though it did go mainstream then), but rather the post World War Two economic high, when American business might truly ruled the planet. Perhaps the seeming strength of American political leaders back then was merely a reflection of the country’s economic power, which since has been squandered and purloined into a matrix of rackets loosely called financialization — a criminal magic act whereby wealth is generated without producing anything of value.

Leaders in such a system are bound to be not just lesser men and women but something less than human. Hillary Clinton, for instance, lost the 2016 election because she came off as demonic, and I mean that pretty literally. To many Americans, especially the ones swindled by the magic of financialization, she was the reincarnation of the little girl in The Exorcist. Donald Trump, unlikely as it seems — given his oafish and vulgar guise — was assigned the role of exorcist. Unlike poor father Merrin, he sort of succeeded, even to his very own astonishment. I say sort of succeededbecause the Democratic Party is still there, infested with all its gibbering demons, but it has been reduced politically to impotence and appears likely to soon roll over and die.

None of this is to say that the other party, the Republicans, have anything but the feeblest grip on credibility or even an assured continued existence. First of all there is Trump’s obvious plight as a rogue only nominally regarded as party leader (or even member). Then there is the gathering fiasco of neither Trump nor his party being able to deliver remedies for any of the ills of our time that he was elected to fix. The reason for that is simple: the USA has entered Hell, or at least a condition that looks a lot like it. This is not just a matter of a few persons or a party being possessed by demons. We’ve entered a realm that is populated by nothing but demons — of our own design, by the way.

Our politics have become so thoroughly demonic, that the sort of exorcism America needs now can only come from outside politics. It’s coming, too. It’s on its way. It will turn our economic situation upside down and inside out. It’s a Technicolor swan, and you can see it coming from a thousand miles out. Wait for it. Wait for it.

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page:

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Nothing will save us except a complete overthrow of the neoliberal order. Nationalize healthcare and public utilities. Do not allow private profit to be creamed from the two aforementioned issues. Make higher education free. Make all jobs pay a guaranteed living wage. Convert to renewable energy. Make the corporations and the rich pay their fair share of taxes. Stop the system of legalized bribery that our Congress has become. Guarantee every citizen the right to vote. Rebuild infrastructure with a massive jobs program. Stop the useless wars and foreign entanglements we are endlessly engaging in. Put people back to work repairing and building infrastructure and sustainable energy systems. Beef up the existing railroads to create a sustainable public transportation system and get people out of cars. And replace factory farming with whatever it takes; small, localized farms and a diet with little or no meat.

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Last week lots of people in the Willits community were shocked to see that four old trees - unusual cork oaks - were taken down by Caltrans crews working on a traffic project on Main Street in Willits. The street is being upgraded with wider sidewalks as part of Caltrans’ responsibilities following the completion of the Willits bypass. In order to do the sidewalks, the trees had to be removed, say city staff who also note that the street is still technically under Caltrans jurisdiction. Once the improvements are finished, the city of Willits will then take over responsibility for the street (which used to be Highway 101 going through Willits). That the trees had to go was not inevitable. There are creative ways to build sidewalks around heritage trees. Also as part of the bypass transition, local residents helped put together plans for Main Street and how they would like to see it transform. Part of those plans was keeping the four cork oaks in place not only as heritage trees but as specialty trees which traditionally produce corks for bottles, including wine bottles. It was heartbreaking to the people who specifically called for the trees to be saved in the city’s plan, to find them simply gone one day without notice. That the Main Street plan itself won an award is just salt in the wound. It’s not clear how this happened other than it appears to be an example of real miscommunication. The city, for whatever reason, did not express to Caltrans what the citizens wanted. It looks like Caltrans did not ask. When are bureaucracies going to realize that trees mean something to people who live and work next to them? Whenever Caltrans is tasked with taking down trees, it seems to us that, first, it should always alert the city or jurisdiction and let them know that the trees are at risk and give them a chance to decide whether some further mitigation can be arranged. Even heritage trees can be moved if absolutely necessary. The city should have done more to make sure that the citizens’ wishes were made a clear part of the written Main Street plan so that anyone looking at it would immediately know that those trees were meant to be protected. Now it’s too late. The citizens would like Caltrans to at least plant more cork trees along that stretch and save the trees they cut down for use as wood products and cork. At this point it’s the least Caltrans can do.

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JUNE 18, 1942: Nearly 150 men on parole from San Quentin are serving in America's armed forces, from Ireland to Australia. Some of them have already died for their country, killed in action. Others are in Japanese prison camps in Manila, China and Japan. This was disclosed here yesterday by officials of the Board of Prison Terms and Parole. More than 50 men went with the Merchant Marine Convoy Service. Two of these men have been lost on the Atlantic Ocean, torpedoed by axis submarines. "About half a dozen," said parole officer Joseph Brennan, "are in Japanese prison camps. Two were lost when the President Harrison was caught by the Japs, and the rest were caught in Manila.” The parole officials declined to give the names of any of the men. "Their draft boards know their prison records," Brennan said, "but nobody else. There's no sense in putting these men behind the eight ball by branding them as ex-convicts in front of their fellow soldiers. At the end of the war many of these men will have completed their parole terms. They will be free men." The parolees ought to make good soldiers, he asserted. "Most of them are young fellows who went a little wild. They've learned their lesson and they've already learned to follow orders."

(SF Chronicle)

* * *


by Dan Bacher

As I predicted on election night, the President Donald Trump and Governor Jerry Brown administrations have apparently made a deal to fast-track Brown’s legacy project, the Delta Tunnels, considered by opponents to be the most environmentally destructive public works project in California history.

The Trump administration released a no-jeopardy finding on the biological assessment to build the tunnels, claiming that the California WaterFix will not jeopardize threatened or endangered species or adversely modify their critical habitat. The biological opinion is available here:

On a teleconference call for reporters today, state and federal officials hailed the release of the controversial document as a “milestone” in the Brown administration’s campaign to build the giant twin tunnels under the Delta.

The fish and water agency officials on the call included Paul Souza, Pacific Southwest Regional Director for US FWS; Barry Thom, West Coast Regional Administrator for NOAA Fisheries; David Murillo, Regional Director for Bureau of Reclamation Mid-Pacific Region; and Michelle Banonis, Assistant Chief Deputy Director at the California Department of Water Resources.

"Our assessment of Water Fix is now final," said Souza. “It was reviewed in detail by a panel of independent scientists, and represents the culmination of a tremendous effort by our own scientists. I really want to acknowledge all of the work that our team put into this effort. We have concluded that Water Fix will not jeopardize threatened or endangered species or adversely modify their critical habitat.

“We have documented some impacts from construction; and we have worked with the Department of Water Resources and the Bureau of Reclamation to develop a plan to restore habitat, to minimize and mitigate those impact,” Souza said.

“Today does mark a milestone in the completion of our biological opinions, but it’s important to recognize that opinions really are technical assessments of projects themselves, and the actual decision to move forward with California Water Fix will be made at some future time by the state of California and the Bureau of Reclamation,” Souza concluded.

Showing the growing collaboration between the Brown and Trump administrations on water and other environmental issues, Michelle Banonis stated, “On behalf of the California Department of Water Resources, I would like to thank the US FWS and the NMFS for their significant efforts in putting together the biological opinion for California Water Fix. We feel this is a momentous step towards the future and we feel that this will help in the future in balancing between water and environmental resources in California."

San Francisco Bay-Delta activists strongly disagreed with Banonis that the permit was "a momentous step toward the future" - and quickly denounced the attempt to “greenlight” the project. They said the “best available science” about endangered species who depend on a healthy Bay-Delta was not fully considered, and may have been politically manipulated.

The biological opinion approves an “Incidental Take Permit” that would “give the project a permission to harm and even kill federally protected species in the building and operation of Governor Jerry Brown’s proposed Delta Tunnels,” also known as the California WaterFix, according to a news release from Restore the Delta (RTD).

“The science in this decision was cherry-picked and not representative of the true scope of harm to endangered species who depend on a healthy San Francisco Bay-Delta estuary for their survival,” said Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Executive Director of Restore the Delta. “We believe the court will overturn this permit and exploring legal remedies with our coalition.”

In April 2017, the findings of an Independent Review Panel found serious deficiencies in the Draft Biological Opinion.

“The Independent Review Panel report suggested that the biological opinion had serious flaws and that the Delta Tunnels will be terrible for Delta fish—those that live here year-round as well as those just passing through on their way to and from the Pacific Ocean,” said Tim Stroshane, Policy Analyst for Restore the Delta.

Yet the final decision by the Trump’s NOAA found “No Significant Impact” (FONSI), according to Stroshane. This is exactly the opposite from the conclusion made by the Independent Review Panel.

Stroshane said NOAA’s decision of “no jeopardy" comes despite the 12 percent reduction in salmon smolt due to reduced water flows through the Delta. Another 7 percent of salmon smolt are killed by faulty fish screens. Other threatened and endangered species continue to decline as more water is taken out of the Delta.

“What agencies have marketed as ‘adaptive management’ is basically trial and error management. They are saying, ‘Trust us to build it, we will figure out how to fix the harms we cause later.’ That just isn’t acceptable,” explained Stroshane.

The Delta Tunnels is based on the unscientific assumption that diverting more water from the Sacramento River so it doesn't flow through the estuary will somehow restore the Delta. I'm not aware of any project in U.S. or world history where diverting more water out of a river or estuary has resulted in the restoration of that river or estuary.

* * *

VOTER REGISTRATION At This Saturday's Pay N' Take And Future Pay N' Takes:

Voter Registration will be available at the Pay N' Take at the Gualala Community Center this Saturday, July 1st, from 8 am to noon. You must be a U. S. citizen, be a resident of Mendocino or Sonoma counties, and be 18 years old by November 2017 for local district elections, and by June 2018 for the General Election.

Voter registration forms are in English and in Spanish. You must re-register if you have moved, changed your name, or wish to change your party. Please bring your Driver's License or your Social Security card.

You can also Register To Vote at the following Pay N' Takes: Saturday, July 15; Saturdays August 5 and 19; Saturdays September 2 and 16, and more dates will be announced soon.

For more information or questions please call Yasmin at 707-884-4703, or Mendocino County Registrar of Voters: 707-234-6819, Sonoma County Registrar of Voters: 707-565-6800, and visit

The freedom to vote is the most critical component of our nation's democracy. Please respect and exercise your Precious Right To Vote! Many have died for the right to vote, and many in our country still do not have their rights to the ballot.

Contact: DJ Sister Yasmin, 884-4703;



  1. Harvey Reading June 27, 2017


    Not bad, but left out was mandatory birth control and free abortions. Population is so out of control that no one has any RIGHT whatsoever to conceive.

    • james marmon June 27, 2017

      …and they call me crazy?

      • Harvey Reading June 27, 2017

        And rightly so.

  2. Harvey Reading June 27, 2017

    Re: They’ve learned their lesson and they’ve already learned to follow orders.

    Following orders: the REAL American creed.

  3. Harvey Reading June 27, 2017


    That will end what’s left of the salmon runs. Bad timber harvest and other bad agricultural practices made north coast salmon fishermen almost totally dependent on Sacramento Valley runs of chinook, and they’re soon to be history…all for the benefit of corporate “farmers” in the San Joaquin Valley. Way to go Jerry Brown. Way to go democwaps.

    Oh, well, George will have his imaginary tree frogs to keep him company.

    • George Hollister June 27, 2017

      I was remembering and reflecting: The presence of amphibians is supposed to be a good indicator of a healthy environment. One Winter evening, probably 15 years ago, I was in the MacDonald’s parking lot off Perkins Street in Ukiah, likely eating a Big Mac, and I notice the loud sound of croaking tree frogs in a poorly drained area between the restaurant and the freeway. That poorly drained area would be called a wetland. And that pool of water, which likely included trash thrown from passing cars, good habitat. So the conclusion must be that there is a healthy environment in the vicinity of the MadDonald’s on Perkins Street.

      The frogs were not imaginary. They might even still be there, unless CalTrans drained, or filled the wetland, eliminating the algae based ecosystem and all living forms associated with it.

      • Harvey Reading June 27, 2017

        No, but your “assessment” and “conclusions” ARE delusional, as always. You appear to be nothing more than a, perhaps hired, shill for farm and logging interests, activities of which have reduced anadromous fish populations dramatically in coastal streams, because of degraded habitat brought about by those human activities. Saying that you saw a frog in a puddle surrounded by litter doesn’t cover up that reality, George, nor does it indicate in the least good long-term habitat for them. Only your imagination creates that.

  4. Harvey Reading June 27, 2017

    Re: The freedom to vote is the most critical component of our nation’s democracy. Please respect and exercise your Precious Right To Vote! Many have died for the right to vote, and many in our country still do not have their rights to the ballot.

    A fairly good public service announcement–even its reference to our nonexistent “democracy” is almost tolerable–if they’d left off the last two sentences–excepting the last phrase of the last sentence–which are pure propaganda. Many died because they knew their officers would shoot them if they failed to follow orders.

  5. james marmon June 27, 2017


    Is it safe to swim in Clear Lake?

    June 22, 2017

    Lake County, Calif. (June 21, 2017) – There’s been a lot of talk recently about whether it is safe to swim in Clear Lake. There are two issues involved in the discussion. The first is the use of herbicides to control nuisance aquatic vegetation. From the County’s perspective and based on the environmental documentation prepared for the aquatic weed control program, the herbicides do not adversely affect the water for swimming. Tribal environmental offices may differ in their opinion of the program, but the County’s position is that the areas treated with the herbicides are safe for swimming.

    The other factor currently affecting the lake is the widespread cyanobacteria bloom (oftentimes referred to as bluegreen algae). One can readily see the near-fluorescent green or blue shades of cells collecting at the surface. As dense as the surface coverage is, no bluegreen algal toxins have been detected. Monitoring is continuing as the situation could change. As a precaution, swimmers are advised not to consume raw lake water and dog owners should likewise restrain their pets from consuming or coming into contact with lake water as the dog may lick its fur. Swimmers should rinse off soon after getting out of the water.

    Updates on the cyanobacteria blooms in California can be found at:

    • Harvey Reading June 27, 2017

      Why would anyone want to swim in what is, for all practical purposes, a sewer pond? Are people really THAT stupid? That may seem an odd question, for me especially, to ask, but Clear Lake has had that, or a similar problem forever. It’s just part of being Clear Lake. If you wanna swim, go somewhere else. Besides, I bet it’s getting hotter than hell there by now. And I’ve never figured out why anyone would want to spend their last years of existence there. Even Blythe would be better. It at least has a “dry” heat, though there’s plenty of it.

    • james marmon June 27, 2017

      The nature of phosphorus in soils

      “The concentration of Phosphorus (P) is usually sufficiently low in fresh water so that algae growth is limited. When lakes and rivers are polluted with P, excessive growth of algae often results. High levels of algae reduce water clarity and can lead to decreases in available dissolved oxygen as the algae decays, conditions that can be very detrimental to game fish populations.”


      If soil test phosphorus is below optimum, apply
      triple phosphate (0‐45‐0) at the rate of 1/2 pound
      (1 cup), superphosphate (0‐20‐0) at the rate of 1 1/4
      lbs. (2 1/2 cups) or bonemeal (1‐11‐0) at the rate of 2
      1/4 lbs. (6 3/4 cups) per 100 square feet. If soil test
      potassium is below optimum, add potassium sulfate
      (0‐0‐43) at a rate of 3/4 lb. (1 1/2 cups) or
      greensand (0‐0‐7) at the rate of 10 lbs. (14 cups) per
      100 square feet. Incorporate all necessary
      amendments to a depth of 6 to 8 inches.

  6. Jim Updegraff June 27, 2017

    Smardzija finally wins one – Giants 9 Rockies 2 He went 6 1/3 innings and gave up 2 ER (his record in now 3-9) and Giants’ bats were at work. Cain is pitching today.

    Louis: I like sports – I attended the first Raider game in 1960 at Kezar – had a season ticket for many years – football today is a violent game with many players getting permanent brain damage – the sport (?) should be barred. Pro basketball is a turn off – a bunch of grown men running up and down a hardwood court chasing a round ball. Do like rugby – when I was at Cal used to watch the games.

    • Bruce McEwen June 27, 2017

      Yes, but somebody spiked the GatorAide w/ meth in the bull pen at The Rock Pile, and the Rockies have been throwing wild pitches ever since the Dodgers capitalized on it last week — which was the best game I’ve seen in years!

      I knew a judge in Wyoming (appointed by a fellow Lt. in Viet Nam, the late Senator Williams) who lent us (anybody from the local American Legion Post 6) his flat next to the Denver ball park — any vet who wanted to see a game –(sorry, no free ad for the sponsors) and it was there I first started a Romance w/ the Rockies, having divorced the promiscuously damnable Padres, a week or two previously…

      • Bruce McEwen June 27, 2017

        The first time I saw the judge, was at a Denny’s, late at night, just after the bars closed. There were two tables of state troopers seated at the window booths, with coffee and doughnuts. This unprepossessing character came in there w/ some guy I later met, and started in on the patrolmen.

        They got up and left, and I don’t remember what he said, except some impression that they were on duty, and ought to be on patrol, rather than, well, waiting for the obvious hungry drinkers from the bars to swim into the net — “you guys get outta here, and back on duty,” or something very like that! (He’d been a USMC Lt.and I, personally,had had some experience with the way they express themselves.)

        Months later, I was involved in a newscast in downtown Cheyenne, mimicking the gal behind the mike, cutting capers and generally making a clown of myself, between her and the camera, over a story (I didn’t like the way they were presenting it). Of course, the TV people took umbrage, having no experience w/ travesty, and I was shortly arrested.

        After a long hot afternoon sitting in the dock, waiting for a judge who looked somehow familiar, to call my name… well, at the end of the day, the judge said, “This must be your lucky day, your name’s not on the calendar. Get outta here.”

        Judge Yogi, thank you so much, Sir.

        • Harvey Reading June 28, 2017

          Justice rendered.

  7. Jim Updegraff June 27, 2017

    Mass starvation assisted by climate change will solve the population growth problem

  8. Jim Updegraff June 27, 2017

    Delta Tunnel – with climate change and continuing droughts there will be no water to send to L. A.

  9. Jim Updegraff June 27, 2017

    SMART – the big joke of the year.

  10. Bruce McEwen June 27, 2017

    John Cesano: “I don’t read it anymore. Because I don’t want to get angry. I just pretend it doesn’t exist and do my job. I so wish we could work with them. I wish that they were responsible.”

    Responsible like the Press Democrat, for instance, John?

    So you could work with them (the AVA), like the winegrowers in Sonoma County “work” w/ the PD — which is to say, you wish the AVA could be an organ of your business interests, sorta like a valet, to groom your vanity, John, with free ads and lengthy puff-pieces about all your dedication to the environment, and your sacrifices to the community?

    My, what a fellow you are!

  11. Randy Burke June 27, 2017

    Harvey, Blythe? Dude, I always said if the earth needed an enema, the insertion point would be Blythe, and the exit point would be Bakersfield.

    • Harvey Reading June 27, 2017

      Not a bad analogy. Not bad at all.

  12. MarshallNewman June 27, 2017

    Re: Anderson Creek. Anderson Creek has been in sad shape for decades. It was usually a trickle at the Confluence in the summer during the late 1950s and early 1960s. Believe it or not, there is a postcard from the early 20th century showing people in rowboats on Anderson Creek. Serious organic pollution and heavy upstream pumping have taken their toll. The proposed Boonville septic system will help improve Anderson Creek. So will a concerted effort to limit vineyard water use, but that second element won’t happen unless and until local vineyards voluntarily step up, or are required or shamed into cutting their pumping.

    • Bruce McEwen June 27, 2017

      I think it obvious from John Cesano’s remarks that the vineyards* have no sense of shame.

      *Neither do the people who own and operate said vineyards (ostensibly, inanimate tracts of real estate, and therefore not susceptible to human emotions, such as shame or, conversely, honor).

    • George Hollister June 27, 2017

      Was there a dam on Anderson Creek to allow for rowboats? It was common in those days for people to install summer dams on local streams for recreation use.

      • Bruce McEwen June 27, 2017

        By George, I think you’ve solved the mystery of Annie K.’s photo!

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