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Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017

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HIGH IN BOONVILLE MONDAY WAS 90, the first day of a predicted two-day resurgence of mid-summer heat. Tuesday will be similarly warm.

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Last Updated: October 23, 2017, 6:09 pm

Date/Time Started: October 08, 2017 11:36 pm

Acres Burned: 36,523 acres

Containment: 98%

Structures Destroyed: 545 destroyed, 43 damaged

Conditions: Fire personnel will remain at scene today working to extinguish internal hots spots and support residence returning to their homes. Fire suppression repair continues to minimize the effects of the fires damage.

Phone Numbers: (707) 459-7419 (Fire Information Line)

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Letter to the Editor:

Are you tired of long waits in our Coast Hospital’s Emergency Room waiting room, sometimes for hours? Oftentimes the reason is that four or five of the Hospital’s eight ER beds are occupied by 5150s, dangerously mentally ill and psychotic people. They cannot be left unguarded, so hospital staff has to be pulled from other departments to sit at the doors to the ER rooms. This impacts the timeliness of care you receive in the medical-surgical and other departments because those staff members were pulled to the ER.

So you see, clogging up our ER with 5150s has a trickle down effect in other nursing departments. Would-be patients and their families get frustrated with long waits. They may go elsewhere. They may bad-mouth our hospital.

And there’s the Sheriff and police who have, at the moment, no other course of action but to take the mentally ill to Coast Hospital.

Passage of Measure B will cost you a few extra cents on taxable items, but it’s either that or have our hospital and law enforcement bear the financial brunt of this travesty. We can contain them, but really cannot properly treat the victims of mental illness.

Funding a mental health facility is the only sensible and humane thing to do. Please vote YES on Measure B. If you are computer savvy, please reprint my letter on line wherever you can. Thank you.

Louise Mariana, RN, 37-year employee of Mendocino Coast Hospital


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Two people are dead, two injured and a CHP officer shot Monday after a 61-year-old Clearlake Oaks resident went on a rampage just before noon, said Lake County Sheriff Brian Martin. Alan Ashmore is assumed to have shot and killed two men in Clearlake Oaks, wounded two others and shot a CHP officer who was protected by body armor. The officer was unharmed. Ashmore is in custody, Martin said. The shooting was reported at 11:20 Monday morning.

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Alan Ashmore

Alan Ashmore is a U.S. Army​ veteran residing in Clearlake Oaks, California.

Education & Career: Ashmore attended Adolfo Camarillo High School​ in Camarillo, California​. He served in the 7th Infantry Division of the U.S. Army​.

Personal Life: Ashmore was divorced in 1994, the same year he was convicted of domestic violence. He has children with his wife.

Criminal Record: Ashmore was convicted of domestic violence in 1994 in Fresno County. He was charged with DUI in October 2004 and convicted in June 2005. In 2000, Ashmore was arrested in Oregon and convicted of driving with a suspended license.

Shooting Spree: In October 2017, Ashmore went on a crime and shooting spree with shots fired near homes, a gas station, a post office and a winery. He killed 2 people (both of whom are men)​ and wounded 3 others, including a California Highway Patrolman.​ He surrendered to police after a 4 mile pursuit.


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I agree with Rex Gressett that the Code of Civility by the Fort Bragg City Council is “humorously infantile”. I don’t agree with his thoughts that the Code is being considered solely because of the Samantha Zutler incident. It must have been terrifying for her having a person screaming in a threatening manner inches from her face while she was doing nothing more than entering a local establishment to have breakfast. This incident happened on the street and should have/could have been handled by law enforcement. Perhaps no one filed charges.

I believe the reason for the proposed Code of Civility has more to do with speakers such as Rex himself. Name calling, accusing and general rudeness make for good entertainment but accomplish very little. During the Turner days speakers such as Rex gave the Mayor (Turner) the perfect opportunity to have the last word. Turner himself was the instigator of more than a few irate speakers.

Those days are over, but now we have Mayor Peters who seems to play both sides of the issues. Let Rex speak enough that the entertainment factor kicks in then call him on it so the “Go” people are happy. The meeting that really showed this side of the Mayor was when David Eyster came to speak. Peters suggested to those present if they liked what was said to hold their hands in the air and do a clicking motion with their fingers. I thought it was hilarious. Here we were at a Council meeting and the room was filled with what looked like a bunch of crabs out of water clicking their pincher’s together. The Mayor seemed to really enjoy the sight. The non clickers were cracking up in laughter.

Bottom line, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know when someone is out of line, that is what the gavel is for. I have a feeling our elementary schools have the same rules being proposed by the Council in place for the children. Those are rules that should have been learned before reaching adulthood. The only part missing is “don’t color out of the lines”.

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ABOUT 9:30 last Friday morning, as reported by the CHP, "A vehicle crashed into picnic tables and is now on the front lawn of the Navarro General Store at 231 Wendling Street in Navarro."

WHICH isn't the half of it. The vehicle, a small economy job, hurtled off 128 and plunged through the bus and school bus stop standard, and on through the Store's picnic tables, finally coming to rest crushed against a tree. The driver, a healthcare worker on the Mendocino Coast, was uninjured. She apparently lost control of her car on the deceptively sharp and rain-slick curve as it bends west at the Store. "This has happened too many times," the owner of the busy store, Dave Evans, commented. "Caltrans has got to slow traffic down through here. If that had happened while kids or anyone else was waiting for a bus… Well, we don't want to think about that."

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IN HAPPIER NEWS from the Deepend, David Jones, to the relief of his many friends in the Anderson Valley, is back at his home in the redwoods after a week in the hospital.

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A LOT HAPPENS at the Navarro Store. Last Wednesday morning as the Editor was enjoying a post-delivery cup of the Navarro Store’s perfectly brewed Thanksgiving coffee, all heck suddenly broke outside. The Store’s adopted rooster, who in fact adopted the Store a few months ago with the grudging tolerance of proprietor Dave Evans, skittered across the outside desk, three small dogs in hot pursuit, an elderly woman pursuing all of them in a fast-moving melee. The elderly woman’s even more elderly husband, from inside the Store, waved his cane in alarm, and everyone hustled outside expecting to find a dead rooster. Almost. “That thing’s a survivor,” Evans said Sunday. “He came limping out of the bushes the next day with one feather sticking out of his rear end like a cartoon. He’s back walking around here like he owns the place.”

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KELISHA finally gets packed off. The long and sometimes torturous local legal story of Kelisha Sheree Alvarez, age 28, a well-known, aggressive transient in and around Ukiah, came to an abrupt end today in Department B of the Mendocino County Superior Court. Defendant Alvarez was sentenced to state prison for 44 months for having violated the terms of her two grants of felony probation. Alvarez, who really belongs in a mental institution if there were any, has regularly appeared in the Mendocino County courts over the years for having violated her various grants of probation. In all of her misdemeanor cases combined, the defendant has been found in violation of probationary terms by the courts at least thirty-one (31) separate times. As noted by District Attorney David Eyster, "There is no question that the courts have shown extreme patience in a long-term effort to work with the defendant, perhaps to a fault. Alvarez has never made any real effort to comply, so today's decision was the right decision…”

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, “We get a little rain then summer comes back, and fire danger with it. I keep telling these people to knock down the dry grass back here, but do they listen? Nooooooo. And Skrag strolls up to get his two bits in. ‘Relax, Shorty, you'll live longer,' he says. A dog doing an honest day's work shouldn't have to put up with insults from a non-contributing cat, and let me know when you meet a cat that isn't a deadbeat and a smart ass."

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STEPHEN ROSENTHAL, a resident of Redwood Valley, comments: “As you point out, every day exactly at noon a siren sounds from a location at the Redwood Valley Fire Department station. This siren can be heard throughout the vast expanses of Redwood Valley. Yet on the night of the devastating fire and subsequent evacuations, no siren sounded. From what I’ve read (and I haven’t heard or read anything to contradict this), the reason given was that there was no one at the station to push the button to manually sound the siren. Say what? Is our emergency communications grid so obsolete and underfunded that this must be done manually? Hell, I can get a state-of-the-art home security system that I can control from an app on my iPhone for under $1,000. You mean to tell me that there isn’t a way to interconnect an inexpensive countywide emergency alert system (that includes a siren for each community) that can be activated by central dispatch? Reverse 911 calls are not always reliable, as was the case with the fire. And yet there is a ballot proposal for $30+ million for a mental health facility that the taxpayers should fund. I have the highest regard for Sheriff Allman, undoubtedly the County’s finest public servant and a good man whose heart is in the right place. He has admitted that all aspects of the County’s communications system needs a major overhaul. But if we can’t effectively fund a relatively inexpensive upgrade that will benefit everyone, how can we be expected to approve a tax increase for a costly facility to benefit a few?”

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Oct 23, 2017

Armstrong, Borup, Donahe

BOBBY ARMSTRONG, Bauxive, Arkansas/Willits. Reckless driving, resisting.

DAVID BORUP, Willits. Disobeying court order, resisting, probation revocation.

MICHAEL DONAHE, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

Fields, Flinton, Goodell

ANTHONY FIELDS, Chico/Fort Bragg. Criminal threats, interference with business.

SEAN FLINTON, Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

KAM GOODELL, Elk. DUI, probation revocation.

Hespelt, Jagdfeld, Marfil

JOSEPH HESPELT, Fort Bragg. Probation revocation.

SARA JAGDFELD, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. DUI, suspended license, probation revocation.

MARIA MARFIL, Willits. Disobeying court order, probation revocation.

Nelson, O'Connor, Partridge

JARRETT NELSON, Suspended license, evasion, probation revocation.

BERNARD O’CONNOR JR., San Francisco/Willits. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

KENNETH PARTRIDGE, Fort Bragg. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, probation revocation.

Retzloff, Rodriguez, Romero

WILLIAM RETZLOFF, Redwood Valley. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, contributing to delinquency of minor, resisting.

NOE RODRIGUEZ, Ukiah. Domestic abuse, kidnapping, false imprisonment.

RONALD ROMERO, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation.

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(1) I wish more people would start using the much more accurate Political Compass instead of the outdated and simplistic right/left spectrum. It’s the fringes of the Authoritarian Left who want to turn us into a nation of doubleplusgoodthinker genderqueer peenginas. Those of us in the Libertarian Left quadrant who favor old-fashioned live-and-let-live are, along with everyone else, currently being screamed at for being “Nazis” by the increasingly belligerent and cement-headed Authoritarian Left.

(2) A few days ago I heard a guest on one of NPR’s many interchangeable talk shows casually observe that “unfortunately, we still live in a country in which heterosexuality is considered normal.” The Horror!

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BECAUSE HOPE and possibility and illusion had begun even then to vanish and more and more he had let the idea of his own extinction become part of the way he lived and part of the way he felt and all the values he put on everything were part of the knowledge and certainty that he would occupy such a grave as he had passed himself so many times since: earth no higher than the surrounding earth and the crossed sticks planted in the earth and a helmet on the crossed sticks, and under the helmet the dog tags, hanging, and the rain falling on all of it.

— Alfred Hayes, The Girl on the Via Flaminia

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Thanks for your plug for my "lively" History of Marijuana in the Emerald Triangle (new title), which means it is not boring. Would you consider serializing it in 4 or 5 sections in coming issues of AVA or online? It will soon become a 50 page book with color art and relevant photos and outlines the politics we find ourselves in to have gotten where we are.

Our address is Pebbles Trippet, PO Box 2555, Mendocino 95460, if you'd like a copy of the 20 page pamphlet for a couple of dollars (stamps ok).

Yes, you are right, I do believe most of the problems the county and the cannabis community are facing are due to prohibition, not harm from the nature of the plant. Not a single person has ever died from it. Remember all the violence that occurred during alcohol prohibition caused the country to repeal the laws against it with a constitutional amendment after only 13 years of wreaking havoc. The marijuana ban 80 years ago in 1937 should have been repealed long ago, given 22 million arrests, millions caged and and so many lives ruined for a benign plant.

But reefer madness is still intact, especially in Mendo County, one of the worst offenders for recriminalizing in cannabis tax law what state law has decriminalized. There is nothing progressive about this county's stance.

Its new ordinance continues the decades long prohibition by banning the cultivation of any amount of cannabis cultivation in 3 primary districts--Timber Production, Forestland, Rangeland--an estimated 80% of the total acreage in the county. This is rural removal by arbitrary discriminatory zoning and will not hold up constitutionally when challenged since it targets an entire community for removal without cause. Just wanting to get rid of us is not a good reason.

Pebbles Trippet


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He’s Also Winning.

by Dave Zirin

As we attempt to understand the meeting between many of the leading activist athletes in the NFL, the Players Association, and franchise owners on Tuesday, as well as Roger Goodell’s train wreck of a press conference on Wednesday, it’s important to remember where we started.

In the summer of 2016, Philando Castile and Alton Sterling were killed by police in Minnesota and Louisiana, respectively. Their deaths were videotaped, and the footage went viral. People mourned. People raged. People protested. And, starting with San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, NFL players—in a historically unprecedented fashion—joined this fight. They took a knee or sat or raised a fist during the playing of the national anthem precisely to make people—fans, sponsors, media, team owners—uncomfortable and raise awareness. Now, after 14 months, what do we know?

Kaepernick might have sacrificed his career for this movement. The other players who either took a knee with Colin last year or started this year have received death threats. They’ve lost sponsors. They’ve been threatened with suspension by team owners. They were mocked by sports-media hucksters, who laughed at the thought that they were accomplishing anything. They’ve had their jobs imperiled and been cursed by a president who, despite his own behavior, has the nerve to lecture people about patriotism. Yet they still persevered. And what did it get them? This week we found out.

First, before the meetings had even started, Roger Goodell co-signed a letter on NFL stationery with Seattle Seahawk Doug Baldwin that was sent to the US Congress in support of a bill called the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017. The bill would reduce minimum sentences for nonviolent drug offenders. The letter read, “Over the last two seasons, one particular issue that has come to the forefront for our players and our teams is the issue of justice for all.… These expressions of player advocacy aptly capture the challenges we currently face as a nation—ensuring that every American has equal rights and equal protection under the law.” It’s hardly radical legislation, but in the era of Jeff Sessions and his dreams of an extra-strength New Jim Crow, it matters.

Then, at the meeting between Goodell and a select group of team owners, no changes to the rules were made to coerce players to line up, helmet in hand, for the playing of the national anthem, much to Trump’s Twitter rage. NFL owners are now basically acknowledging that Trump’s call to “force players to stand for the anthem” would cause a full-scale rebellion. This was a victory: an affirmation both of what’s in their collective-bargaining agreement and of their First Amendment rights.

Players also received promises of financial commitments from the NFL for their social-justice work. No dollar amounts have been named, but Doug Baldwin has described it as “significant.” The protests, as well as the sight of Nazis in his hometown, also inspired anthem-protest supporter Philadelphia Eagle Chris Long to donate his entire salary for the year for scholarships for underprivileged youth in Charlottesville, St. Louis, Boston, and Philadelphia.

Lastly, these protests have helped launch a new organization to aid athletes in political and community endeavors, called Athletes for Impact. Michael Bennett of the Seahawks is a part of it, as are basketball players Maya Moore and Diana Taurasi, soccer star Megan Rapinoe, former NBA player Baron Davis, and others.

I spoke with Jesse Hagopian, a Seattle teacher who is working with Michael Bennett and Athletes for Impact to bring this advocacy into education-related issues. He said, “When Colin Kaepernick began his protest against racial injustice and police brutality, it launched a new phase of the movement for black lives. This movement has found an organizational expression in Athletes for Impact that has begun organizing athletes—women and men, LGBTQ, youth, and others—from many different sports in an effort to utilize the platform of professional athletes to support movements for social justice.”

It is easy to be cynical about this, especially after Goodell’s press conference on Wednesday. That was painful, with Goodell just ignoring questions about what he would do if a player were suspended for protesting. He also said, “I understand how our fans feel about this issue, and we feel the same way. Players should stand for the national anthem.” The implication is that fans are of one mind on this issue, but polls actually show that fans are split, with the racial divide being particularly sharp. Goodell basically said, “The concerns of our white fans are foremost on my mind.”

But his most cringe-inducing moment was when he preached, “We have about a half-dozen players that are protesting.… We’re going to continue to work to try to put that at zero.”

First, it is more than “half a dozen,” but the statement in and of itself is vile, basically saying, “We don’t care about any of this, We’re just trying to shut this down without causing a full-scale player’s revolt.” Number one on Goodell’s agenda is clearly a sponsor- and owner-driven effort to restore the the image of the NFL as a place where players shut up and play. But his whine is not going back in the bottle.

Roger Goodell has earned our cynicism, and it’s understandable why people think that this is all a sham aimed to end this protest. But while these owners and Goodell have more than merited our distrust, I would argue that this is the wrong way to understand what has happened. Instead, go back to the killings of Castile and Sterling. NFL players—despite their non-guaranteed contracts, short careers, and precarious employment—organized and have now wrested financial and political concessions from 32 of the most conservative 1 percenters in the country.

That Goodell was so awful in his press conference is a testament to the odds these players faced in taking this on. And several of the leading activists—like Michael Bennett, Philadelphia Eagle Malcolm Jenkins, and San Francisco 49er Eric Reid—are still going to protest, because they understand that, while the players have won a victory, the war is far from over. Trump will still vent. His minions and bots will still send death threats. Players may even still be suspended, although I hope any who are sue the league back to the stone age. But what has happened thus far has been a victory. It’s still a limited one, and it will be as long as Colin Kaepernick remains on the outside looking in.

As Michael Bennett said: “I think the first step to even being able to even have a conversation is making sure that Colin Kaepernick gets an opportunity to play in the NFL. Before we even negotiate anything about whether we sit or whether we stand, there should be a negotiation about opening up the doors for Colin Kaepernick and give him an opportunity again.”

This is truth. But it is still a victory nonetheless. And these days, that must be appreciated, replicated, and even savored.

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"YOU'RE TELLING ME I'M DEAD. You're explaining my life away. I don't even know you. You're crazy."

I don't think you fully understand, Mr. Bigelow. You've been murdered.

(Jim Thompson)

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They don’t teach respect anymore since the liberals took over the schools. No respect whatsoever. Our younger people don’t know anything about Vietnam, Korea, World War II, World War I, and even the Civil War. Or 9/11. They have no knowledge of the courage and suffering that existed in those conflicts in order to protect our liberty and freedom. That's why our young people, and not so young, are so disrespectful of our flag.

The black hoodlums and others who are kneeling down when the National Anthem is sung don’t even care that lots and lots of people who made the ultimate sacrifice were black. So they are disrespecting their own race.

There are so many liberals in our high schools and colleges that are so liberal that our young people don’t even say the Pledge of Allegiance anymore. Political correctness has run wild. In North Korea if you don’t respect the flag you get shot. I think that is what we should do here! Get rid of these rotten, anti-American liberal sons of bitches once and for all. Maybe Donald Trump can straighten this mess out.

Also, it is becoming an epidemic of robbing, raping, murdering and all kinds of crime in this country. And then you have people like Governor Kim Jong Un Brown who lets criminals commit a violent crime with a gun and then wants to take our guns and gun rights. I don’t think our country has ever seen a bigger liberal jackass than our Governor.

Oh, well, it’s gotta get better, it can’t get any worse. God bless and good luck to Donald Trump

Jerry Philbrick


PS. It’s high time that the white people in this country start standing up for themselves against political correctness bullshit — especially when it comes to white people.

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ON LINE COMMENT OF THE WEEK: I just think the image of an average American defending his home with an assault rifle is laughable. So someone breaks into your house and you are going to wake up, grab your AR and start cutting loose ? Come on… Ever think what that would really be like? Give me my .38 special revolver and I feel pretty safe. My house has been broken into several times. I imagine I might have to use it at some point (or maybe I’ll use my old bear leg trap!) but I’m pretty sure a shot into the floor is all it would take to turn around a tweak thief. If you are really imagining you are going to have a shootout with an equally armed “bad guy” with an assault rifle, and win, you watch too many movies.

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MOMMA'S ON THE CHAIR, Poppa's on the cot

Baby's on the floor blowin' his natural top

Sayin' Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop

Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop

Yesss, my baby knows

— Lionel Hampton

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by James Kunstler

It’s interesting to see how, in a culture so pornified that any nine-year-old can watch sex acts on-screen all the live-long day, we discover that decorum is absent in American life. This, at the same time that the more Gnostic political Leftists want to transform human nature by erasing sexual categories in their quest to create a utopia of hermaphrodites.

Sex is bothersome, you know. It comes between people literally and rather awkwardly, and it is fraught with tensions so primitive that it can frighten and shame us. Is it any wonder that these tensions will manifest in a workplace where men and women spend their waking hours? Are you really surprised that sexual attraction is a currency for advancement? That it tends toward the naked exchange of favors?

I’d submit that the wreck of Harvey Weinstein is a dramatic representation of collapse of the movie industry as we’ve known for nearly a century. The two-hour motion picture exhibited in a large room with a lot of seats is in its death throes. It joins the long-playing album of recorded music and the book-length literary exercise called the novel in the elephants’ graveyard of art-forms. The fall of HW is just the period at the end of the sentence.

The past month has been a bloodbath for the theatrical release of movies. Supposed blockbusters are being pulled from the empty cineplexes like guest speakers from the college lecture halls. The struggling middle-class doesn’t need movie theaters anymore, and the flat-screens at home enable them to get lost in whole fictional worlds that grind on in weekly episodes year after year like so much bratwurst. Who knows how long that phase of show biz will last. In evolution, remember, the climactic form of an organism is often supersized. Think: Baluchitherium, titan of the Oligocene land mammals. (And imagine sex between two creatures the size of tractor-trailer trucks!) The fate of television “content” like Game of Thrones probably depends on the fitness of an electric grid that is looking pretty sclerotic these days. Personally, I think the show-biz of the future will tend toward puppet shows.

Fortunately (or maybe not, depending on your political ideology) sex will still be with us, and its eternal tensions with it. What is more subject to change is the division of labor. Most adults I know accept it as axiomatic that social changes they’ve seen in their lifetime have become permanent installations in the human condition. That was Tom Friedman’s “narrative” about globalism, which is now fracturing and withering. The same is true of the Gnostic Leftists, who believe they are on a trajectory to exterminate the detested cissexist heteropatriarchy. How do you suppose things will work out in a nation of eunuchs and trannies?

You’ll be surprised, perhaps, at how not permanent these trends may be. The decadent USA, lacking discipline and decorum, lost in raptures of grandiose techno-narcissism, broadcasting its twerked-up gangsta fantasies while it sucks finished goods from other lands in exchange for janky bonded debt, is becoming the international pariah. It’s a good bet that the tensions arising out of that dynamic will, one way or another, provoke the blow-up of the trade and financial systems that nourished the phase of history now passing — with plenty of collateral damage in all the other realms of daily life.

In the meantime, America sinks into a swamp of sexual excess, sexual preoccupation, sexual confusion, sexual recrimination, and sexual remorse. The one thing that none of the combatants can agree on is what might pass for sexual normality. The very notion would be taken for a war-cry.

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

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KLEPTOCRACY NOW! Nine Reasons Trump’s Tax Plan Will Hurt You

A Scheme of the Super-Rich, by the Super-Rich, for the Super-Rich

by David Cay Johnston, DCReport Editor-In-Chief

Donald Trump says his tax plan is “a revolutionary change, and the biggest winners will be the everyday American workers as jobs start pouring into our country, as companies start competing for American labor and as wages start going up at levels that you haven’t seen in many years.”

No, it’s not.

It’s just another con job from the most successful con artist in history.

Below are nine examples of how this is a plan of the super-rich, by the super-rich and for the super-rich. And unless you are super-rich, this plan will badly hurt you.

  • You’ll pay high tax rates. The 10% and 15% tax rates, paid by most Americans, will be replaced with higher rates—12% and 25% rates. This helps the poor and middle class how? Your marginal tax rate would rise by either 20% or 67%.
  • Less Income Taxed. Trump says the 12% rate is good because you‘ll get your first $12,000 of income tax-free ($24,000 for married couples). Big deal. Currently, you get $10,400 tax-free ($20,800)* so it’s not much of a boost and you no longer get exemptions for your kids and reduced tax credits for any dependent who is not a child, like say your elderly mother or impoverished brother.
  • Trump Will Pay Less Tax. The top tax rate on partnerships and limited liability companies would fall from 39.6% to 25%. Trump has more than 500 such businesses. His tax rate would fall by more than a third.
  • Corporations Pay Less. The corporate tax rate would be cut from 35% to 20%. This at a time when corporations have record amounts of cash and interest rates are super low. The savings will make it easier to buy back stocks, which makes executive stock options more valuable because fewer shares make each share more valuable.
  • Rewarding Corporate Tax Dodging. Companies that used accounting to convert profits earned in America into tax-deductible expenses paid to their offshore subsidiaries will get a tax holiday, bringing the profits back with little or no tax. The taxes avoided by moving money offshore are in effect loans from Uncle Sam at zero-percent interest so this would be a double dip of corporate welfare.
  • Trump Kids Win. Trump would repeal the estate tax so if he really is worth $10 billion—he’s not—he would save $4 billion. At even $100 million he would save $40 million. While he claims his tax plan “is not good for me,” it will, undoubtedly, be good for Donald Jr., Eric, Ivanka, Tiffany and Barron Trump.
  • Trump Pays 85% Less. Had the tax plan been in effect in 2005 Trump would have paid a tax rate of less than 3.5%, a rate lower than the poorest half of taxpayers. That’s because he would repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax. Here is our exclusive on his tax return from March.
  • More Jobs Would Go Offshore. While only vaguely described, the plan would encourage companies to move jobs offshore, the exact opposite of what Trump administration said. Poor countries overseas will offer tax-free profits or minimally taxed profits in return for jobs—jobs that will pay very low salaries by American standards. American companies that offshore jobs to these countries will get a twofer—cheap labor and no taxes.
  • Saving Gentleman Ranchers. Each year about 2.6 million Americans die. Fewer than 5,000 of them pay any estate tax. Trump drags out the old lie that this is to save the family farm. Only 80 of those 5,000 taxable estates include farm property—and they are gentleman farmers like Ted Turner with his herds of buffalo, not yeoman farmers working tractors in their corn and soybean fields.

The bottom line: This plan only makes sense if you believe, like Trump and many Congressional Republicans, that America’s greatest economic problem is that the rich do not have nearly enough. If you believe the rich just cannot afford to invest in ways that create jobs and grow the economy this is the plan for you.

Featured Image: History Repeats Itself: The Robber Barons of the Middle Ages and the Robber Barons of Today, by Samuel Ehrhardt (1862–1937); Puck, Nov. 6, 1889.



  1. David Gurney October 24, 2017

    The only fingers Tranasaurus Rex will be twinkling are his middle ones. Go Rex! Go Phil Shitbrick!

  2. Bill Pilgrim October 24, 2017


    Kudos for publishing the Johnston piece about the tax “reform” plan.
    Johnston is one reporter who knows the tax system inside and out.
    Of course, the more articles like this get traction…the more they will be labeled “fake news” by the kleptocrats railroading this plan.
    Simply put, it will be the largest transfer of wealth to the 1% in US history.
    Meanwhile, the yahoos are incensed by some muscle-bound athletes disrespecting the flag of a nation that has become an oligarchy and is screwing them into savage servility.

  3. Jeff Costello October 24, 2017

    Philbrick gets a free pass because he was a logger and involved in sports?

    • Bill Pilgrim October 24, 2017


      I cannot make out whether he’s on the level or is secretly a correspondent for THE ONION.
      Otherwise, we have a clear example of the genomic evidence that homo sapiens bred with neanderthals.

      • Jeff Costello October 24, 2017


        A slap in the face to neanderthals, although you could be right about the Onion. What evidence we have in the AVA of Trump lovers is very telling, and depressing. It gets worse out here in flyover country.

        • Bill Pilgrim October 24, 2017


          Putting Right-Left dogmas and paradigms aside, I think we can agree that a majority of the citizenry in western, industrialized nations are recognizing that the current system is failing. The real problem, so divisive, is to do with how to fix it. Some are convinced that regressing to the 1950’s is the solution. But increasing numbers believe going backward is not the way forward.
          This is not necessarily an unhealthy dilemma.
          Simply put, we have come to a “crisis of decision” for humanity. Do we carry on with the old selfish, divisive, competitive ways of the past…or try something different? That’s the ideological battle being fought right now.
          The question each of us is confronted with is: Where do I stand?
          The survival of humanity on this planet rests on decisions being made today.

      • LouisBedrock October 24, 2017

        Almost 63,000,000 people voted for the moron and charlatan.
        Just under 66,000,000 voted for the corrupt witch, wife of a serial rapist.

        Jill Stein, who graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College, attended Harvard Medical School, and who practiced internal medicine for 25 years received 469,627 votes.

        Gentlemen, we live in a nation of idiots.

        • Harvey Reading October 24, 2017

          What’s new, Louis?

          • LouisBedrock October 24, 2017

            Hi Harvey:

            Same old same old.

            Comments from idiots like “Shitbrick” as David calls him, and the other feeble minded ones, remind me that I’m part of a very small minority.

            Cada día que amanace
            Otro idiota nace.

            (On all the days that dawn,
            Another idiot is born.)

            (Spanish Proverb)

            • Bill Pilgrim October 24, 2017

              “An Old Man’s Winter Night.”
              Fifty years after first reading it I still find themes pointing to today, and the human condition.
              I taught this poem…
              There is much there to contemplate and apply to the vicissitudes of the day.

              • LouisBedrock October 24, 2017

                “All out of doors looked darkly in at him
                Through the thin frost, almost in separate stars,
                That gathers on the pane in empty rooms.
                What kept his eyes from giving back the gaze
                Was the lamp tilted near them in his hand.
                What kept him from remembering what it was
                That brought him to that creaking room was age.
                He stood with barrels round him — at a loss.
                And having scared the cellar under him
                In clomping there, he scared it once again
                In clomping off; — and scared the outer night,
                Which has its sounds, familiar, like the roar
                Of trees and crack of branches, common things,
                But nothing so like beating on a box.
                A light he was to no one but himself
                Where now he sat, concerned with he knew what,
                A quiet light, and then not even that.
                He consigned to the moon, such as she was,
                So late-arising, to the broken moon
                As better than the sun in any case
                For such a charge, his snow upon the roof,
                His icicles along the wall to keep;
                And slept. The log that shifted with a jolt
                Once in the stove, disturbed him and he shifted,
                And eased his heavy breathing, but still slept.
                One aged man — one man — can’t keep a house,
                A farm, a countryside, or if he can,
                It’s thus he does it of a winter night.”

                Robert Frost

                Thank you, Bill Pilgrim.

            • Harvey Reading October 24, 2017

              I hear ya. Sometimes I wake up at night with a sense of impending doom…and then it turns out not to be dream at all, but reality.

              • LouisBedrock October 24, 2017

                “A light he was to no one but himself
                Where now he sat, concerned with he knew what,
                A quiet light, and then not even that.”

                For many of us this is a harsh reality.

  4. George Dorner October 24, 2017

    Gosh, Mr. Philbrick, if you look at the Constitution that the American flag represents, you will find it guarantees us political freedom, not executions for political dissent. That said, there are a lot of us who will not join you in your sieg heils to your favorite fuhrer.

  5. james marmon October 24, 2017

    Advisory: Additional Information regarding Clearlake Oaks murder investigation

    Dear James Marion Marmon,

    Timeline of the events relating to the killing spree of Alan Ashmore on 10/23/2017

    • A resident on Anchor Village and neighbor of Ashmore saw Ashmore leave the house midmorning on October 23, 2017.

    • Richard Braden, a longtime friend of Ashmore, showed up at the Ashmore residence and was seen knocking on the front door and windows. No one came to the door and he left a short time later. He parked nearby on Anchor Village and sat in his vehicle.

    • Ashmore returned to his residence and a neighbor heard a woman screaming. Ashmore engaged in an argument with a 22 year old Middletown, CA woman inside of the home. The argument escalated and Ashmore threatened the woman, while he held her at knifepoint. The woman resisted Ashmore and he shot her once in the foot, as she fled the residence. The woman ran to the neighbor’s house and was let inside.

    • Ashmore went outside and asked a neighbor where the woman went. In order to help protect the woman the neighbor told Ashmore that she had left the area.

    • Douglas Ashmore, the father of Alan Ashmore, came out of the Ashmore residence. Alan approached his father with a handgun and shot him. Douglas Ashmore was later found dead at the scene. Alan then pointed the gun at the neighbor and pulled the trigger. Ashmore’s weapon, a small caliber semi-automatic handgun, misfired and the witness was uninjured.

    • Ashmore retrieved a 12 gauge semi-automatic shotgun from his residence and got into his white Chevrolet Tahoe. Ashmore drove a short distance to a neighbor’s house on Anchor Village. Ashmore fired at the house with the shotgun, entered the residence and again fired the shotgun at the occupants. While the occupants fled, one woman suffered non-life threatening injuries as she jumped from a window.

    • Ashmore went back to his vehicle and drove further west on Anchor Village, while he fired from his vehic le at one other occupied home. He stopped at the residence of a former employer and fired one shotgun round through the back of the house. At the time of this shooting, the homeowners were not at home.

    • Ashmore located Richard Braden in his vehicle parked on Anchor Village. While Braden was sitting in the driver’s seat of his vehicle, Ashmore shot him with the shotgun. Braden was later found dead at the scene.

    • Ashmore encountered a single California Highway Patrol (CHP) Officer who was responding to the initial call of a shooting. Ashmore fired an unknown number of shotgun rounds at the CHP officer, striking both the patrol vehicle and the officer. The officer sustained non-life threatening injuries, as he was struck in his ballistic vest. The officer later responded with a Sheriff’s deputy, in an attempt to locate Ashmore and provide security at a local elementary school. The officer eventually sought medical aid, and he was released later that d ay after being treated at an area hospital.

    • Ashmore fled in the white Tahoe and drove to a Chevron station located near the intersection of Highway 20 and Keys Boulevard. Ashmore went into the Chevron store armed with the shotgun and confronted a vendor. After seeing the shotgun, the vendor fled the store and Ashmore fired one shotgun round at him. The round missed the vendor who then retreated to his vehicle and retrieved a handgun, as he was licensed to carry a concealed firearm. Ashmore took a soda from the store and went back out to his vehicle. Ashmore, still armed with the shotgun, was confronted by the vendor who fired several times at Ashmore in an attempt to stop him. Ashmore was not struck by any of those shots. Several rounds impacted Ashmore’s vehicle.

    • Ashmore left driving west on Highway 20. He then pulled into the parking lot of the Power Mart, located on Highway 20 near Foothill Boulevard in Clearlake Oaks. Ashmore entered the store, a gain armed with a firearm. He robbed the store of merchandise, including cigarettes and a lighter. Ashmore engaged in another altercation with an unknown citizen prior to leaving.

    • Ashmore left driving east on Highway 20 before turning on High Valley Road. In an attempt to aid in his escape, Ashmore lit wildfires fires as he drove up High Valley Road. Those fires were later controlled by Northshore and CalFire firefighters.

    • Ashmore drove to the Brassfield Winery where he brandished a firearm at a person at that location. Lake County Sheriff’s deputies caught up to him as he continued on High Valley Road. Ashmore fled from the deputies, and the pursuit continued west on High Valley Road. Sheriff’s deputies, CHP Officers, and a Lakeport Police Officer positioned themselves at the intersection of Bartlett Springs Road and High Valley Road, in order to prevent Ashmore from escaping. When Ashmore arrived at the road block, he surrendered to She riff’s deputies without further incident. He was in possession of a Remington 1200 12 gauge semi-automatic shotgun, a Raven arms .25 caliber semi-automatic pistol, and numerous rounds of ammunition.

    • Detectives are continuing to piece together information in order to determine the motivation for Ashmore’s crime spree.

    • The homicide victims were identified as 85 year old Douglas Ashmore, and 64 year old Richard Braden of Clearlake Oaks.

    Lieutenant Norm Taylor
    Lake County Sheriff’s Office
    1220 Martin Street
    Lakeport, CA 95453
    707-262-4082 Office
    707-262-4220 Fax
    For full details, view this message on the web.

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