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MCT: Tuesday, May 28, 2019

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BARBARA HOWE, head of Mendo Public Health, has received her walking papers. Ms. Howe, a highly respected, long-time employee of the agency, was summarily dismissed last week in the now familiar Give me your keys and leave massacre style we've often seen in Mendocino County. Ms. Howe was given "16 minutes," we understand, to clear out. Dr. Gary Pace has resigned in protest.

Barbara Howe

County CEO Carmel Angelo confirmed Monday, without elaboration, "Yes, Barbara Howe is no longer employed by the county."

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SCATTERED SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS will be possible across Trinity and eastern Mendocino counties every afternoon and evening the last half of the work week. Otherwise, a gradual warming trend is expected through the end of the week. (National Weather Service)

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STEVE MIZE'S MEMORIAL SERVICE: Steve Mize passed away on Sunday, May 5th. He loved Anderson Valley and the people who call this beautiful place home. A memorial service will be held Sunday, June 9th from 1-4 p.m. at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds picnic area. Please come share a memory, a story, or a photo, or bring a large index card with a special message for the family to keep (cards will also be available at the service). Beverages and the main meal will be provided, but sides and desserts will be potluck: names starting with A-J please bring a salad or side and K-Z please bring a dessert.

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Dan Morgan Boutilier, age 64, passed away May 2, 2019. He was born August 27, 1954 in Santa Monica, California to Gene and Wanda Boutilier. He married his longtime friend and love, Cindy Daniels, in April of 1974. Known to family and many friends as "Boon", a nickname given to him by his grandmother, Dan was named after a family friend from Michigan who was a steam shovel operator. Co-workers nicknamed him Boots, which was short for Boutilier. Dan spent his early years in Southern California. In 1970, Dan moved from Hermosa Beach, CA to Anderson Valley, where he finished his schooling. He graduated in 1972 and was awarded the Bank of America Achievement Award for Industrial Arts. He raised his family in Anderson Valley and has spent the last twenty years in Reno, NV. Dan's interests in motorcycles, fabrication & mechanics led him down many career paths. Dan was employed in logging as cat skinner, as a millwright, a machinist, a miner and was a skilled mechanic. He worked the past 10 years driving a Komatsu 930 (mining truck) and did not miss a single day of work. Dan will be remembered as a loving husband, dedicated father and loyal friend. He will especially be missed by his granddaughter, Shiloh. Dan is survived by Cindy Boutilier, his wife of 45 years, son Daniel Boutilier, daughter and husband Naomi Boutilier & Peter Moyer, granddaughter Shiloh Moyer, and brother Emory Boutilier. He was predeceased by his parents and grandson Nathan Moyer

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by W.B. Yeats

I know that I shall meet my fate

Somewhere among the clouds above;

Those that I fight I do not hate

Those that I guard I do not love;

My country is Kiltartan Cross,

My countrymen Kiltartan’s poor,

No likely end could bring them loss

Or leave them happier than before.

Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,

Nor public man, nor cheering crowds,

A lonely impulse of delight

Drove to this tumult in the clouds;

I balanced all, brought all to mind,

The years to come seemed waste of breath,

A waste of breath the years behind

In balance with this life, this death.

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Some Memorial Day Reflections

by Steve Heilig

Memorial Day, like Veteran’s Day, always brings conflicted thoughts and emotions. Here are some of them, spurred by some books on warfare I’ve read. Americans have a longtime romance with war movies, books and stories, but these are a little different.

My father worked the “industrial” side of what Eisenhower famously called the military-industrial complex. He ran a division of a major automobile corporation that made weaponry, or parts thereof, for the military. After he died, we found a letter addressed to him from a senior general he worked with. The letter said (paraphrasing; I’ve misplaced it): “It has come to our attention that you have brought in a major project under budget and before deadline. Please don’t ever do that again, as it makes us all look bad.” The letter was a joke among old pals, but belied a major problem — these old military cronies (my father was a Navy man, and stayed involved the rest of his life) were used to going way over budget in their use of tax dollars to fund “defense” or, in the case of Vietnam at the time, offense. It was an offhand insiders’ joke among good old Cold Warriors — who didn’t seem to worry that their practices came at the expense of taxpayers’ funds and probably human lives.

This old letter came to mind as I read of Trumpists rattling sabers at Iran, pardoning war criminals despite military veterans protests, and the usual calls for yet more billions to be spent on “defense” (that ultimate Orwellian term). I’m no expert in this realm, but have found some recent books to be illuminating about our nation’s military history, and how it has shaped and warped our economy and policy. Start with this fact: The U.S. spends more on “defense” than all other nations combined, but still we have lost and/or blundered most every war we’ve entered in the past half century. Now read on….

The first book is “National Insecurity: The Cost of American Militarism” by Melvin A. Goodman. Goodman, who spent 24 years with the CIA, provides an incisive insider’s examination of what he calls our “military economy,” and how outsized “defense” spending and profiteering results in much more “offense” than might otherwise be conducted or justified. The result is untold suffering and, in some cases, belated apologies. With a focus on the most recent such “adventures” in Iraq and Afghanistan, Goodman summarizes much of what any impartial informed view of these wars, especially the Iraq disaster, must conclude — they have been a “monumental blunder,” as former New York Times editor Bill Keller, a former supporter, had to conclude from the evidence a decade into the war.

Beyond the economic near-disaster brought to our own country, our national reputation was stained by our use of torture, which has again been confirmed by a recent bipartisan task force that concluded that such practices “had “no justification” and “damaged the standing of our nation, reduced our capacity to convey moral censure when necessary and potentially increased the danger to U.S. military personnel taken captive.” Further, we have provided oft-shameful care of veterans, and are now seeing a shameful scandal unfold regarding sexual abuse among our own soldiers. It thus should not be so surprising to read of the frequency of suicides among those we send to war (on this latter tragic point, a memorable letter in the the New York Times by Sandy Savett offered this terse prescription: “A good way to cut down on suicides in the military is to stop sending young people to war”).

The second book is Nick Turse’s “Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam.” The Vietnam War has been examined enough, with enough apology even by those who conducted it — see Robert McNamara’s belated mea culpa — that one might think there was nothing left to tell or lament. But Turse provides a catalog of atrocities so pervasive and inexcusable that this reader will never be able to feel unreservedly proud of our nation again, and never feel wholly justified in criticizing another. Our military in this war was as bad as any in history. America committed genocide there — and not for the first time.

The third book, also centered on the Vietnam War, is “Napalm: An American Biography” by Robert Neer. This one reads like a case study of arms development, with the product being deployed without discretion or mercy, in the name of victory but also profit. Countless humans — and, I can’t help but add, other creatures — suffered and died horribly from napalm’s use. True to form and too late for them, the United Nations called the use of napalm against civilians a war crime in 1980. Also true to form, our own nation admitted to that global consensus just a few years ago.

Napalm’s most visible and infamous victim was Kim Phuc, a nine-year-old girl photgraphed running down a road in agony. In Neer’s book, she now relates that she has been in physical pain ever since, but that for decades the psychic pain was even worse. She lived in anger and hatred of Americans, and “I had cursed them to death.” But after finding foregiveness, “I feel there are no more scars on my heart.” It’s a beautiful redemption; but her struggle did not have to happen in the first place.

The final book is “What Soldiers Do: Sex and the American GI in WWII France” by Mary Louise Roberts. World War II was the one “good war,” supposedly, where “the greatest generation” were unequivocal heroes. Well, read this book and learn how many of our soldiers acted simiarly to the hated Japanese and Germans, raping and abusing the very people they had just “liberated” — with the acquiescence and even encouragement of their leaders. As the title says, maybe that’s just what soldiers do — history would seem to tell us so.

There are often budgetary debates about how much we might be able to cut “defense” spending. The argument becomes partisan, with “conservatives” arguing that this is the one area where we need to spend as much as we currently do — or more. Somehow, as even a Republican politician has lamented, “Conservatism came to mean ‘I deserve to drive my SUV as much as I want and will send other people’s kids to fight for that right.’” But increasingly, even self-identified conservatives are joining Eisenhower in seeing the folly of our being “seduced by war” — and that “support our troops” is an empty slogan when that just means a bumper sticker. How about cutting expenses on unneeded weaponry and bases, and spending that on better services for veterans — and others? There are many opportunity costs to us being the biggest military power of all time. Even a relatively small percentage cut in military spending could fund so much in terms of human services, and many experts feel it could be done with no loss in terms of our national security. Goodman, in his book, offers expert advice on how this might be attained.

Now, I’m very aware of George Orwell’s famed statement that “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” The majority of soldiers likely go to war, at least at first, due to loyalty and even idealism (although it must also be noted that enlistment in a no-draft military is often, even mostly, driven by economic need). I’ve no illusions that the world can be dangerous and I’m glad I live in a relatively safe, and even relatively dominant, nation. I even admit to “interventionist” urges when I read of, say, Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad using language from his medical background to justify his regime’s slaughter (“When a surgeon in an operating room … cuts and cleans and amputates, and the wound bleeds, do we say to him your hands are stained with blood?”). That makes me wish we could somehow remove him from power, and save lives at a minimum. But there’s no easy way to do that, as Obama demonstrated with his ill-advised “line in the sand.”

But there is such a thing as overkill — literally. It’s said that everything looks like a nail if you’re holding a hammer; the United States has long had many more “hammers” than it needs. We need to scale it back, and maybe these books and other viewpoints, even though they might not be entirely new, indicate a growing awareness of that. I consider myself a patriot, but blind patriotism is really meaningless; “my country, right or wrong” is the slogan of the blind. We can both honor those who have sacrificed and do much better. Even my hawkish and lifelong Republican father, as he was a highly-educated man, came to see Iraq as a mistake. John Wayne was a draft-dodger. So was the con man currently squatting in the White House. And so on, and on. And when the historical evidence is reviewed, it seems that the old 1969 Temptations/Edwin Starr Motown hit — later revived by Bruce Springsteen — had it right: “War! What is it good for? Absolutely nothin’!”

Say it again.

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REDDING SATURDAY right before it started hailing golf ball

(Photo by Janet Lee)

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by David Wilson

There will be many words written and sentiments expressed in honor of Memorial Day, but none will be as significant as the thoughts and feelings, wishes and prayers we hold within ourselves. One’s heart is a special place, and when we have our moments of silence this weekend it is in order to bring to that special place those parts of the outside world that strike us to our core, to make them forever a part of ourselves and to better ourselves through them. When we better ourselves it improves the world.

I was a college student at Humboldt State University in 1991 when the Gulf War broke out, our first war against Saddam Hussein. As always, times of war bring with them much on which to reflect. I thought about this as I watched our country’s people respond in so many varying ways. While I tend to do most of my reflecting on such things internally, the gamut of human expression is wide and other people will express themselves in any number of ways.

Some will raise their voices visually. Not long after the Gulf War started in 1991, a striking visual beacon was raised against the night sky along US 101 between Arcata and McKinleyville: a gigantic flag flying along the freeway, hoisted by crane and stretched taught by a cable anchored to a roller. Impressive by day, the giant flag’s illuminated Stars and Stripes stood out spectacularly against the backdrop of night. It drew my photographic eye like a moth to a flame. I wanted to photograph it. I had no thought of speaking any messages with a photograph, only of crafting something visually appealing.

The flag was flying from within the courtyard of a landscaping business. It was behind a locked gate at night, so I approached their office for permission and told them of my idea for photographing their flag at night. I said I thought it might look neat, and if it worked out I would bring them a print. The good people knew a good idea when they heard one, or maybe they just liked me, and they gave me the combination to the yard for me to come back to photograph their great flag. The photographs ended up coming out well, and I brought a matted print back for them. It was a little fairy tale all our own. I wonder if they still have it.

These images were photographed on Ektar 1000 35mm color negative film. Photographers today are spoiled rotten by the advantages of digital imaging. Oh, my goodness is it liberating. Millennials have no idea (well, the odd one will): imagine taking photographs and not being able to see them right away. You could blow an entire roll of crucial moments and not realize it until later. These nighttime flag images were blind experiments, and I couldn’t tell if I were even close with their exposures. It’s an extremely contrasty scene, and the camera’s light meter could only help me guess the exposure times for these. I wouldn’t know whether I’d guessed well until I had processed the negatives and seen them the next day. It helped that I was keeping exposure notes of my nighttime photography so I could hone my guesswork a little bit by bit.

A Giant US Flag flies beside US 101 between Arcata and McKinleyville, Humboldt County, California. 1991. Shot on 35mm film, this is an in-camera double exposure on a single negative; I made one exposure of the whole scene with the crane carrying the flag twisting in the wind. Then without advancing the film I took a telephoto shot of the flag filling the frame with its stripes flowing softly upward. The two images overlapped on the negative to produce this image.

(To read previous entries of “Night Light of the North Coast,” click on my name above the article. To keep abreast of my most current photography or peer into its past, visit and contact me at my website or follow me on Instagram at @david_wilson_mfx.)

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by Bob Dempel

I appeared in front of the Russian River Cemetery District Board of Directors last week at their monthly meeting. I was ushered in to what must be their chapel. They had set up a table in front where all of the board members sat, and then a crosswise table at each end. One end was for me and the other end was for the chairperson. All of the members had piles of paper work in front of them. It was very impressive for getting $1000 per month for attending just one meeting a month

I was offered a seat at the center of the end table. Chairperson Carol was seated at the opposite end of the table at another table positioned crosswise. All five members were present. Carol called on me to speak. I stood and read a short sentence to the board. “Are you prepared to reset my brother’s headstone, at no expense to me baring a legal challenge?” This is either a yes or no answer. The Chairperson, Carol Connerton seemed to have trouble with the question and after a few minutes of no definitive answer I told them I would take that as a no answer, and left the meeting.

I no sooner got in my car than Mr. Jaymen was knocking at the window. The board was having trouble with my statement. Would I change the wording to read “court order” rather than “legal challenge”? So, I changed the wording on the little yellow notepad and gave back it to him. Jaymen asked me to wait for just a minute while he ran back into the meeting room. I waited just a short time and again Jaymen was at my window. The board wanted me to sign my handwritten note. I agreed, and off went Jaymen. This whole détente reminded me when Secretary of State Kissinger was flying between the Arabs and the Palestinians trying to bring peace to the region. He flew in Air Force Two and it was parked right in the middle of the Cairo airport so no other plane could get by. We were on the tarmac for what seemed like hours.

Jaymen came back again and now the board wanted me to come back into the meeting room. Back in the meeting room the board now had legal counsel. On the speaker phone they had the cemetery district’s attorney. He would like to offer some advice. He went on and on and I could see his bill increasing by the minute. He could not guarantee that my brother’s headstone would permanently stay installed if someone objected to it being there.

That was enough for me right now. I had other things to do than fight for the installation of my brother’s headstone. I’ll leave it sitting right where it is. Carol stated for the record that it was a mystery how the headstone got dug up and wound up in the cemetery’s shop. Must be a ghost at the cemetery. Let’s call it CemeteryGate.

I wonder if the district will refund the money I paid them to install it in 2007? And, how about the expense I had to move it from the district’s shop? And how about an expense I would have to move it back to the cemetery?

On the following Thursday the unthinkable happened. I received an email from the cemetery’s office with an attachment. The attached letter is a declaration dated May 22, 2019 just one day after meeting with the board. It stated: We, Valerie Shrum and Lynne Christensen, give permission for the Russian River Cemetery District to place William Dempel’s memorial headstone in Block S-5 Lot 10 South West ¼, grave #5, first stone area. This document is witnessed by none other than office person Kornegay. Christensen lives in Ukiah but Shrum lives out of the area, or did. Someone on the board had to exercise some common sense and stop this foolishness. I wish to thank them. Now all the district has to do is guarantee that barring a court order the headstone will remain in the Historic Crawford lot.

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Bart Starr: born January 9, 1934 - died May 26, 2019

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by Lawrence Reichard

Nordic Aquafarms, a Norwegian company, has announced plans to build a land-based fish farm in Humboldt Bay. The plan was warmly received by local officials, and local media coverage has been generally positive, but is Nordic Aquafarms the green jobs-creator it claims to be?

Nordic Aquafarms was also well received by officials in Belfast, Maine in late 2017, but Nordic's Belfast project has become increasingly controversial, and critics say Nordic is not as green as it claims.

A year and a half into Belfast, Nordic is well behind schedule and the Belfast project itself is in considerable doubt.

Nordic must establish right, title and interest (RTI) for its intake and discharge pipes to cross intertidal areas to get from its land-based operation to open marine water. Nordic claims it has RTI, but opposition group Upstream Watch says Nordic knowingly filed false RTI information with state regulators. In a move that surprised project opponents and local media, Nordic confessed on Facebook to submitting the faulty information, saying it had done so to protect landowners' privacy and feelings.

The RTI application was submitted under penalty of perjury, and Nordic quickly took down the post, but not before Upstream Watch screenshot it and sent it to state regulators. Without RTI, the Belfast project can't move forward.

Opposition to the Maine project broke wide open at an April 17, 2018 Belfast City Council meeting, when the council voted 5-0 for a zoning change needed for Nordic's plans to proceed. Scores of Belfast residents urged the council to slow down, and emails from Belfast City Manager Joe Slocum to Nordic CEO Erik Heim obtained under Maine's Freedom of Access Act (FOAA) show the city received more than 130 written comments urging a slowdown on the project – none supported Nordic.

In the emails, Heim said Nordic didn't want to go where it wasn't wanted by the citizenry, but Belfast City Manager Joe Slocum repeatedly assured Heim that the overwhelming majority of Belfast would support the company's project and opposition would be limited to a few people who oppose everything.

Slocum was wrong.

Nordic was clearly surprised by the increasing opposition. Nordic started to push back, and eventually the gloves came off, on both sides. Feeling the heat, Belfast city government commissioned the global consulting firm Deloitte to produce a report on Nordic's financial viability and environmental record, but no environmentalists were cited in the report, and Deloitte had done work for Nordic and had written positively about Nordic on at least two prior occasions. Belfast City Manager Joe Slocum told Deloitte he had a favorable impression of Nordic, and he told Nordic in advance what specific areas Deloitte would be looking at. Slocum told me he found Deloitte on his own, but Nordic CEO Erik Heim told me Deloitte was on a list he gave Slocum.

Nordic held a series of public meetings and the opposition became more vocal at each successive meeting. Attendees pressed Nordic on the content of its fishmeal, as that would affect Nordic's discharge into the already environmentally challenged Belfast Bay. Nordic was clearly surprised, and rattled, by the question, its persistent repetition and the persistent demand for answers.

Nordic was also pressed on its claims that fish farms are the most efficient way to produce protein. Commercial fishmeal is comprised mostly of soy and forage fish, small fish that are linchpins in the marine food chain. Forage fish lose 80 percent of their protein content in fishmeal production. At one public meeting, a Nordic panelist said humans don't eat forage fish, but according to Wikipedia, humans consume all 14 of the most common forage fish found in fishmeal.

Nordic's jobs claims have also drawn scrutiny. In the face of mounting Belfast opposition, Nordic has twice increased its jobs estimates – one of its key selling points - from 60, to 60-100, to more than 100. Nordic has given no explanation for the increased estimates.

While twice increasing its job estimates, Nordic has twice decreased the length of its effluent discharge pipe. From 1.5 miles, to one mile, to one kilometer (.62 miles). Almost a year after shortening the pipe to one kilometer, Nordic's website continues to state a “offshore” length of one mile, a figure that was never accurate, as it doesn't count the pipe's three tenths of a mile on land. In a public meeting last October, Nordic said it would correct the online figure, and the company was reminded at another public meeting in December, but the incorrect figure remains on Nordic's website.

For the first 8-9 months of the Nordic fight, I had a column in Belfast's Republican Journal newspaper, and wrote extensively on Nordic, but late last fall my column terminated, because of my Nordic coverage. Nordic has admitted it contacted newspaper management about my coverage, but the company has denied threatening a lawsuit. Earlier in the fall, before the axe fell, I went to Norway and Denmark and looked into Nordic's operations there. As chance would have it, I have lived in Denmark and speak Danish.

What I found on the trip sent Nordic to the mattresses.

In Bergen, Norway I spent a day with Kurt Oddekalv, Norway's most visible environmental activist, whose colorful description of farm fish gave me the title of the first column filed on my trip: “The Most Toxic Food in the World?” Later analysis, commissioned by me, of fish produced by Nordic in Denmark revealed levels of toxins considerably higher than E.U. consumption recommendations.

Also in Bergen, University of Bergen professor and fish farm expert Are Nyland told me about fish escapes from land-based farms. In public meetings that were videotaped and are available online Nordic has acknowledged that fish escapes from land-based fish farms are possible, but Nordic executive Marianne Naess told a Maine legislative committee February 28 that such escapes are impossible.

Fish escapes are important because escaped farm fish can wreak havoc with wild fish populations. They breed with wild fish and produce offspring that are ill equipped for the rigors of open-water life; they compete with and destroy wild-fish spawning grounds; and they decimate wild-fish populations with diseases to which wild fish have never been exposed.

The jocular Professor Nyland guffawed at Nordic's online-video portrayal of fish in its land-based operations swimming freely with ample room and said the fish would have to be stacked like cordwood to turn a profit.

In Fredrikstad, Norway, home to Nordic Aquafarms headquarters, I asked Nordic CEO Erik Heim whether Nordic had built its Maximus smolt facility in Denmark. Heim said Nordic had bought the operation from a Danish engineer and entrepreneur named Bent Urup, and Heim seemed to immediately regret having given me Urup's name. Heim said it might be hard to find Urup, who might be in Asia somewhere.

With little trouble, I found Urup online and several days later I interviewed him in his Denmark office,. Urup is perhaps the world's foremost expert in land-based aquaculture – and he painted an unflattering picture of Nordic Aquafarms.

Urup spoke of fish disease at Nordic's Denmark smolt facility, Nordic's overblown or outright false claims of having built its Denmark facilities from scratch, and of Nordic personnel incapable of running a land-based operation based on his design.

It got worse.

Urup said he believed Nordic was going to hijack his patented fish farm design in Belfast, modifying the design in hopes of bypassing Urup's patent. Urup said another company, InterAqua, had tried that in Australia, had been sued by him, and had lost and gone bankrupt.

In Denmark I also interviewed a 14-year-old former Nordic employee who said he cleaned empty fish tanks with the DuPont chemical Virkon S, and did so without protective eyewear. Under Danish law, working with Virkon S requires protective eyewear, and 14-year-olds aren't allowed to handle the chemical at all. In response, Nordic ducked the Virkon S allegation by saying it had never hired underage workers, a charge I never made.

But it was the Urup column that set off Nordic and a week after its publication my column was terminated. I have continued to write on Nordic Aquafarms, blogging, and posting to Facebook and an opposition email list. Among other things, I have reported on emails I obtained in which Nordic CEO Erik Heim discusses substantial delays in construction of Nordic's Fredrikstad, Norway facility – delays that Heim denied to me last fall in his Norway office.

To garner public support for its proposed Humboldt County project, Nordic Aquafarms has begun to hold public meetings like those it has held in Maine, and according to the Eureka Times Standard, Nordic's Marianne Naess told a May 21 Eureka public meeting that she would drink discharge from Nordic's proposed Humboldt County fish farm.

Given the documented high levels of toxins in farm fish in general, and of Nordic Aquafarms fish in particular – not to mention the general inadvisability of ingesting fish feces - I would urge Naess to choose another beverage. And given Nordic's track record in Maine, Humboldt County can expect more such doubtful assertions by Nordic Aquafarms.

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Time is flying by! In two weeks we will hold our next Village meeting on Sunday June 9th at Lauren's - 4:00 to 5:30. It will be the official launch of our interactive website. We will have tech helpers at this event if anyone wants assistance with their cell phone. Snacks and beverages will be available during the gathering and we will begin with socializing for the first half hour. A flyer about the event is attached. Also attached is a list of upcoming activities organized as a result of the survey we sent out. Please check it out: you may want to participate in one of them!

I hope to see you there,


We have been working on organizing group activities for the community… below is what we have so far – also please let us know if you are interested in leading other activities.

Cultural Outings – theater, music, film, dance, etc. Organize events and carpooling to local and out-of-the-area venues. If interested or have suggestion¨ please contact Mary O’Brien.

Book conversation at Lauren’s restaurant – the current book is “Being Mortal” by Atul Gawande – read the book and meet on Monday June 24th at 11 am. Contact Lauren for questions

“Morning Mile” meet up at the High School track on Saturday or Sunday morning for a walk – if interested contact Suzy Miller

Also Hendy woods Community http//

Free Guided Forest Ecology walks at Hendy Woods State Park every Saturday @ 10:30 am – June through September – meet at the Day Use Area – the Day Use Fee is waived for those considering volunteering.

Local’s Free Day. On the Second Sunday of every month in 2019 the Hendy Woods Community is covering the Hendy Woods State Park’s Day Use fee for local residents from the following communities: Yorkville, Boonville, Philo, Navarro, Comptche and Elk

Know your zip code.

Questions: contact Anica Williams

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FLAG DAY CHILI COOK-OFF & FLAG RETIREMENT CEREMONY. Boonville Veterans Memorial Building. Saturday June 15. 2019, 1-4pm. Sponsored By American Legion Redwood Empire Post 0385. Note: No Super Hot Chili! First Prize $200. Second Prize $100. Third Prize $50. To Enter as a Contestant Call Ray at 707-895-9363.

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RARE TREAT! We are in for a rare treat. Joe and Hattie are coming to Boonville! That’s JOE CRAVEN and his daughter HATTIE May 31st Lauren’s Restaurant, the show begins at 9pm. Joe and Hattie will be coming from the A.V. Elementary school where they will be doing an assembly for the kids Fri afternoon. Joe Craven has been described as “not just an entertaining musician with a penchant for the mischievous, he is a teacher and student all at once and he will draw you into his performance by including you as though you’re part of the show itself.” He is also a monster on just about any instrument he picks up, even though it was not designed as an instrument, we’re talking bedpans, cookie tins, a mule jawbone, garbage cans, along with more traditional instruments, violin, mandolin, banjo, mouth harp, cuatro, berimbau, balalaika, I’ve even see him play his shoelaces. Hattie is blossoming as a performer. Hearing her wonderful voice along with her phrasing makes it so she “owns” the songs she sings. We’ll see how the show shapes up next Fri. It may begin as rather like a sit down concert but I suspect that that won’t last long. Pretty quick you might find yourself caught up in the music scatting with Joe and playing the bar stools. Check him out at C’mon down to Lauren’s this Fri and pick up on Joe and Hattie’s great energy. Cap’n Rainbow 895-3807

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HAPPY 82ND BIRTHDAY to the Golden Gate Bridge. Its greatest film role: Vertigo, here with co-stars James Stewart & Kim Novak. Paramount, 1958.

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If you have spent any time at either of the two Anderson Valley school campuses in recent years, you have noticed lots of activity going on in and near the parking lots. The Anderson Valley Unified School District (AVUSD), in partnership with the Mendocino County Resource Conservation District (MCRCD), implemented Low Impact Development (LID) stormwater retrofit projects at both the AV Elementary School and AV Jr/Sr High School campuses through a State Water Resources Control Board, Prop 13 grant called DROPS (Drought Response Outreach Program for Schools).

AVUSD was one of 32 schools in the State to receive competitive grant funds along with Ukiah Unified School District. The Project elements are designed to capture stormwater from the parking lots and roofs at both AVUSD campuses in filter basins, raingardens and water storage tanks that allow the water to spread out, sink into the soil to recharge groundwater basins, and/or be stored in tanks for use during the dry season.

Stormwater at both campuses drain directly into adjoining creeks, Robinson Creek at AV Jr/Sr High and Con Creek at AV Elementary School, which provide critical habitat for threatened steelhead trout and other aquatic species. Boonville receives an average of 37 inches of rain a year. By installing just over 6,000 square feet of low impact development (LID) infrastructure the project enables the infiltration of approximately 1.5 million gallons of stormwater per year.

A goal of the project, along with managing stormwater, is to increase the knowledge of basic watershed dynamics and proactive ecological problem solving among K-12 grades. The Project provides opportunities for students to learn about stormwater management and pervious vs. impervious surfaces. Students also learn about watershed dynamics including, soils, water, flows, slope, and the effects of pollution. They assisted with planting projects which taught about the value of CA native/Mediterranean, drought tolerant, pollinator friendly plants and the role they play in filtering water and pollutants. And finally, they had opportunities to participate in rainwater catchment projects by designing and painting murals on the water tanks that reflect the principles of “slow it, spread it, sink it, and store it!”.

The DROPS Project more broadly offers Anderson Valley and Navarro watershed residents examples of LID stormwater strategies. It also helps beautify AVUSD campuses and offers students, and the public, relatively simple drought resilient, climate beneficial practices to bring home.

There will be a public tour and dedication on June 4th 2:30-3:30 at the Anderson Valley Jr/Sr High School. Please join us in celebrating this exciting project. For more information contact, or call (707) 895-3230.

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* * *


AFTER AN UNSEASONABLY cold and wet Saturday and Sunday, Memorial Day dawned gray but dry, just in time for the 11am ceremonial tribute to local veterans at Evergreen Cemetery, this one dedicated to the memory of the late Bob Nimmons who fought and survived the Korean War with the Marine Corps, meaning this modest and unassuming long-time resident of Boonville was one tough hombre. About a hundred people turned out to remember the fallen and honor the living, complete with a bugler and an honor guard who closed out the event with two, five-rifle volleys.

THE CHP arrested more than 740 people for driving under the influence of alcohol just 30 hours into the Memorial Day weekend: “Sadly, there have been 741 DUI arrests by CHP in the first 30 hours of the #MemorialDay2019 MEP. There’s no excuse for driving impaired,” California Highway Patrol tweeted. “Stay Put. Call a cab or ride share company. Arrange for a sober driver in advance. Stop putting your life and the lives of innocent people at risk.” Memorial Day weekend is notoriously dangerous on American highways, and 18 people have been killed so far in California alone.

ANDERSON VALLEY’S bustling capitol city, Boonville, was crowded all three days of Memorial weekend, visitors and locals alike filling the town’s restaurants and shops. I especially enjoyed weekend visits to the marvelous displays at the adjacent open studios of Yoriko Kishimoto (paintings) and Saiorse Byrne (fabrics) then, the next day, the fine jewelry of Judy Nelson, the stunning panoramic Valley photos of Charlie Hochberg, and the equally stunning paintings, especially the large ones, of Laura Diamondstone. I regretted that my lack of resources prevented me from wholesale buys of everything I saw, and I’ll bet I’m not the only Valley person bedazzled by the abundance of local talent.

ADD to the gray whales washing up dead and dying on Bay Area beaches, the hundreds of Common Murres washing up dead or dying on beaches from Noyo Bay to Seaside Beach, about a ten-mile stretch of the Mendocino Coast. Experts speculate, tentatively, that the animals are starving, that the ocean isn't producing enough nutrients to keep them alive. I feel more and more like Mr. Jones in that old Dylan song about Jones not knowing what's happening except that, added up, it's ominous.

THE LEMMINGS, however, are thriving. They jammed north through Boonville all day Friday at unsafe speeds, then bombed back south Sunday afternoon, pausing in the Anderson Valley to enjoy our many delights. I was amused at a couple of locals warning that the CHP was in The Valley. Myself, I’m always happy to see them and wish they were here much more often given the way so many auslanders rip through here at unsafe speeds. We used to have a resident CHP officer, the late, great Burl Evans, a wonderful guy who also lived here with his family. And we still have Rick Rajeski who worked and lived in the Anderson Valley before he retired. Maybe Rick would come back for weekend duty. We could use him, for sure.

THE INEXORABLE slide backwards to neo-barbarism. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed 880 cases of measles in 2019, marking the worst year for the disease in America in 25 years. Health officials have now confirmed cases in 24 states, with 41 new cases in the last week alone. Thirty of those new cases were reported in New York. Despite the total number continuing to rise, a CDC spokesperson told CNBC the pace of the disease appears to be slowing down. Officials continue to attribute the recent surge of cases, which was declared eliminated from the U.S. in 2000, to an increasing number of parents who refuse to vaccinate their children. The CDC said Monday there are several outbreaks in progress across the country, but the majority of cases are concentrated in two outbreaks in New York City and New York’s Rockland County. The newest state to declare a measles case is Oklahoma, where a person contracted the measles after traveling domestically and internationally.

ED GEHRMAN WRITES: "There are two pieces of evidence that can solve the Bari bombing: the Argus letter and the “you won’t get a second warning” letter. The Argus letter contains information that was know by only a few people including Mike Sweeney. Investigators were able to find and analyze a sample of DNA from that letter. The “You won’t get a second warning letter” was sent to Judi a few weeks before the bombing and was tested for DNA; a sample was also found. These two DNA samples matched one another so they were both deposited by the same person. That person is Mike Sweeney. His DNA will match the DNA found on the two letters. Of course, he could prove me wrong by giving a DNA sample that didn’t match. Why hasn’t he?"

ED NOTE: Sweeney claims it would be an invasion of his privacy, as do his defenders who cleared a cool $3.5 million or so pretending he had nothing to do with it. Mr. G is correct; the “mystery” of the Bari Bombing can be solved via dna.

A FRIEND sent along the following link, perhaps aware of my position on the actuarial tables. (Far righthand column.) My plan, insofar as any of us can have a plan, is to coordinate my exit with the collapse of my vehicle — 290,000 miles on it as of today — and the end of newspapers described in this story. Of course five years is a ways away, especially given the acceleration of the multiples of onrushing, unaddressed catastrophes.

UKIAH'S LINEAR homeless camp grows larger by the day. Or seems to be ever-larger to this once-a-week visitor to the county seat. The camp is stretched out on a mostly unused frontage road between the Ukiah Airport and the big box stores lining the west side on Highway 101, away from people likely to object. I'm told by people who would know that the county's legendary lawman, Pete Hoyle, is assigned to keep the homeless — the derelict sectors of that population anyway — away from the Ukiah Valley's streams and the Russian River. Whether or not the homeless are re-directed by Hoyle to the frontage road is not known, but if that relocation is a deliberate strategy it's a sensible one. A hundred or so difficult people arrayed longitudinally along a mostly un-traveled stretch of pavement is certainly preferable to a hundred difficult people trashing the Russian River and its feeder streams. Arranging difficult people in a half-mile string of destitution would seem preferable to parking them in one place where the more truculent of them can be easily provoked. Strung out (sic) and away from each other makes for a more peaceful situation overall. One guy has erected a fence around his tent complete with an American flag and Beware of Dog warning. And last week I saw a garbage truck picking up neatly packaged debris, seemingly on a routine stop. In lieu of the county's leadership doing anything at all about the growing numbers of unhoused people and the equivalent numbers of walking wounded, Ukiah's (and Hoyle's?) linear strategy is a rare stroke of brilliance. Haul in a few porta-potties and a portable shower or two and Ukiah has conceived the least expensive, most effective homeless program in the state.

* * *

* * *

ACCORDING TO A KQED story PG&E’s decision to underground the replacement and rebuilt power lines after the power lines in the Paradise area were destroyed by the fire PG&E is responsible for, will be done in conjunction with trenching that has to be done anyway for replacement of gas lines that were also destroyed in the fire PG&E was responsible for. And since PG&E will be reimbursed by ratepayers for the rebuild itself this “pledge” has a hollow ring to it. (Mark Scaramella)

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Avants, Beard, Degrasso

JAMES AVANTS, Albion. Probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

NOAH BEARD, Fort Bragg. Domestic abuse.

AYLA DEGRASSO, Calpella. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, resisting.

Gonzalez, Macarthur, Maynard, Nelson

LEDEZMA GONZALEZ, Oakley/Willits. Pot sales, suspended license (for DUI).

CALEB MACARTHUR, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol. (Frequent flyer.)

ANDREW MAYNARD, Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

ILIJAH NELSON, Ukiah. Burglarly, stolen vehicle, vehicle theft, obtaining ID without authorization, bad checks.

Santa, Smith, Soufan

NICOLE SANTA, Covelo. Domestic battery.

RANDALL SMITH, Ukiah. DUI, suspended license (for DUI), probation revocation.

OMAR SOUFAN, Pawtucket, Rhode Island/Ukiah. DUI-alcohol&drugs.

* * *


by James Kunstler

The race to economic collapse is an international competition sparking threats and tensions summoning the specter of war. The imploding center of this collapse is that of industrial technocracy based on fossil fuels. All the nations will go through it on differing schedules. It has been playing out slowly, painfully, and deceptively — hence, my term for it: the long emergency.

Following a dumbed-down media unable to parse the delusions du jour, one might think, for instance, that the USA and China are engaged in a symbolic battle for the heavyweight championship of the world. Rather, both are freaking out at a prospective decline in activity that will make it impossible to support their current populations at even close to the levels of comfort they had lately achieved.

For China, that means very lately. Up until the turning millennium, most Chinese lived as though the twelfth century had never ended. For but two decades now, a new and quite large Chinese middle class has been driving cars around freeways, eating cheeseburgers, wearing designer blue jeans, shooting selfies at the Eiffel Tower, and even dreaming of trips to the moon. They’ve barely had time to turn decadent.

Getting to that was quite a feat. China compressed its version of the industrial revolution into a few decades, catching up to a weary, jaded West that took two hundred years achieving “modernity,” and now it is seeming to surpass us — which is the reason for so much tension and anxiety in our relations. The real news is: we’re all already in the climax of that movie. Nobody will surpass anyone.

The reason is the decline of affordable energy to run the stupendously complex systems we have come to rely on. China never had very much petroleum. They import over 10 million barrels a day now, and most of that comes from far far away, having to pass through some very hazardous sea lanes like the Straits of Hormuz and Molucca. They run things mostly on coal, and they’re well past peak — and let’s not get into the ecological ramifications of what they’re still burning. Even some intelligent observers in the West think that the Chinese have made gigantic strides in alt-energy, and will soon be free of old limits, but that’s a pipe dream. They have met the same disappointments over wind and solar as we have. Alt-energy just doesn’t pencil out money-wise or physics-wise. Plus, you absolutely need fossil fuels to make it happen, even as a science project.

The US is smugly and stupidly under the impression that the “shale oil miracle” has put an end to our energy worries. That comes from a foolish nexus of wishful thinking between a harried populace, a dishonest government, and the aforementioned brain-damaged news media. We want, with all our might, to believe we can keep running the interstate highways, WalMart, Agri-Business, DisneyWorld, the US Military, and suburbia just as they are, forever. So, we spin our reassuring fantasies about “energy independence” and “Saudi America.” Meanwhile, the shale oil companies can’t make a red cent pulling that stuff out of the ground. For the moment, ultra-low interest rate loans, riding on the back of all that wishful thinking, keep the racket going and sustain America’s illusions.

The disappointment over that error-in-thinking will be epic. In fact, it already is, considering how many working-age people without work or sense of purpose are ending their lives by opioid OD in Flyover country. The hipsters of Brooklyn and Silicon Valley haven’t gotten to that point because so much of America’s diminishing capital productivity still flows into their bank accounts — enabling a sunny life of caramel cloud macchiatos, farm-to-table suppers, and sexual reassignment surgeries.

The US and China are actually more like two passengers of a sinking ship racing to swim to a single lifebuoy — which is drifting ever-beyond the reach of both desperate parties on a powerful current of history. That current is the one telling nations quite literally to mind their own business, to prepare to go their own ways, to strive somehow to become self-sufficient, to finally face the limits to growth, to simplify and downscale all their operations.

Alas, the US and China — and everybody else — will apparently be dragged kicking and screaming to those transformational recognitions. (Thus, the agonies of Brexit.) In the meantime, we may choose to slug it out in pursuit of that chimerical world championship just because we still have means to go at it. Such a contest would certainly speed up the journey to our fated destination, and not in a good way.

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)

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[1] Biden is the same old shit warmed over. Voting for Joe is just perpetuating the same old DC song and dance. Joe is embedded in the flesh of Wash just like all the rest of the ticks. Having said that, there’s no reason to think that Trump is any less corrupt than the rest of the Washington crowd. If anything, he’s more power hungry, and money hungry than all of them. I’m really stymied this time around. No idea who to support. The oligarchs who control things, will not allow anyone to take power who does not conform to their expectations, and make no mistake, they run the show, unless Trump is successful at making himself President For Life, in which case they will have to line up behind him for their turn at the trough. The Democrats are no longer the party of the blue collar working class, because there is no blue collar working class anymore. The good paying manufacturing jobs are gone. Like I’ve said before, that was the only way poor people could lift themselves out of poverty, and now those days are gone. After WWII, the country made so much money that there was no way the corporations could hog it all, even though they tried, the middle class managed to get enough to enable themselves to become the middle class. That boat has sailed, however, and much of the country hasn’t woken up to the ugly truth, which is that we are gonna get poorer as a class until we wind up in about the same shape as we were in the thirties. Not good news, but there’s little point in trying to sugarcoat it. What you see in Wash DC is the way it’s gonna be from now on. Money flocks to power, and the sooner people can figure out how screwed they are, the better chance there is that they can do something about it.

[2] The American people are capable of much better. But mental fitness comes a lot harder when your information environment plies you with the media equivalent of orange soda and Doritos morning, noon and night. Re: the fate of Julian Assange, I think there’s room for hope that he won’t face — well, let’s be charitable and call it a “trial” — in the USA. The fact that America is slipping ever further into authoritarianism hasn’t gone completely unnoticed overseas. That, plus the fact that the (likely bogus) sex-assault charges against him in Sweden have been reactivated opens a possible escape hatch. Sweden’s extradition law doesn’t honour requests for what they consider political crimes, and surely that’s how the USA is treating Assange. Should the UK extradite him to Sweden first, rather than the U.S., Sweden may reject extradition for Assange’s inconvenient acts of journalism and pack him off to Russia instead. (They surely won’t want him on their soil any longer than necessary.) It could happen; let’s watch and see.

Whereas if Assange actually gets extradited to the USA it’s game over for press freedom, as the outcome of any proceeding has been predetermined. The First Amendment will join the Fourth in the dead-letter pile.

* * *

“MILITARY MEN are just dumb, stupid animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy.”

― Henry Kissinger

Quora Commentary by Harold Kingsberg:

He allegedly did say that. The quotation first shows up in chapter fourteen of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein's book The Final Days. Published in 1976, the book is about the Nixon's administrations last days in office before his resignation.

Kissinger was talking to Chief of Staff Alexander Haig when he said it - and he said it to be a jerk. Keep in mind, Haig had come up through the army and was a West Point graduate, so Kissinger was just being incredibly rude to get a rise out of Haig. He apparently failed. So, whether or not Kissinger said it, whether or not he was sincere is another matter altogether.

This being said, Kissinger, in an off-the-cuff interview close to forty years after the fact, denied saying it at all. Were Woodward an unimpeachable font of journalistic integrity, I’d strongly suspect the denial, but as discussed in the answer comments, Woodward’s history in this regard is far from perfect. As such, we’re left with two men, neither of whom can claim great integrity, giving two entirely different versions of events.

* * *

“I’M NOT A TOURIST, I live here” - Written on the helmet of a US Marine, Khe Sanh, 1968

* * *



President Donald Trump’s salary is $400,000 plus benefits. He is extremely wealthy and promised, if elected, he wouldn’t take a salary.

We find that Trump has donated his salary quarterly to the National Park Service for maintenance of Antietam National Battlefield; the STEM program in the Department of Education; the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism; the Department of Health and Human Services for its opioid addiction awareness campaign; some veterans programs; and many other worthy causes in the government. No one needs his tax returns to clarify this.

Congress isn’t a law enforcement agency. To obtain the president’s tax returns, it needs some legitimate legislative purpose. The Democrats’ motivation is transparently political. Russian collusion didn’t work, obstruction didn’t work, and now they’re claiming cover-up.

Robert Mueller’s investigation cost taxpayers about $35 million. After 675 days, 500 witnesses interviewed by 19 democrat lawyers, 40 FBI agents; 2,800 subpoenas, 500 search warrants, a million documents from the White House and no executive privilege claimed, conclusion: no collusion. He’s no Russian agent, nor is he a traitor.

Now the Democrats want to impeach Trump for a cover-up. Democrat delusion continues.

Sandy Metzger

Santa Rosa

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* * *


The following incomplete list comprises what is part & parcel of the root of the problem. These various dimensions protect the root and enable the weeds to flourish.

  1. The media. Trump’s wrong, it’s not fake news. It’s propaganda which is much more insidious & clever than mere fake news. That means all the conservative media too. It’s all duplicitous propaganda meant to sell the destruction of our planet via rampant, mindless consumption of shit no one needs.
  2. The political duopoly. Wall Street owns and controls both parties and, yes, that includes Donald Trump. If Wall Street didn’t like Trump, he’d be Six Feet Under right now. The fact his supporters support him is proof of how braindead they really are. They are some of the dumbest humans to ever live, if you can call what they do living.
  3. The lawyers. Lawyers are scumbags. It’s a dishonorable profession despite the few rare exceptions who have a conscience and some semblance of morals & principles. Dick the Butcher knew what to do with lawyers. Modern man has no idea.
  4. The NGOs. The NGOs are used to soften a target country for the financial predators to swoop in and steal the target country’s resources and keep said target country in a perpetual state of controlled chaos as the predators of finance pick the carcass clean and draw the last drops of blood from every unturned stone.
  5. Least, but not last, the political consultants. They are the true devil’s advocates. Immoral, or amoral, scumbags. The worst of the worst. Beware the political consultants, for they are the devil’s spawn. Alone among God’s primates, they connive and kill for sport, or lust or greed. Yes, they will murder their brother to possess their brother’s land. Let them not breed in great numbers, for they will make a desert of their home and yours. Shun them. Drive them back into their jungle lair: For they are the harbingers of death.

* * *

TODAY IN HISTORY: May 26, 1937 - In the "Battle of the Overpass" Ford Motor Co. security guards brutally attack and beat United Auto Workers (UAW) organizers and supporters at the pedestrian overpass over Miller Road at Gate 4 of the River Rouge Plant complex in Dearborn, Michigan.

The union organizers were attempting to distribute literature during shift change as part of their "Unionism not Fordism" campaign. The guards tried to destroy any photos showing the attack, but one Detroit News photographer snuck his pictures out and the incident made headlines around the country, inspiring support for the union and opposition to Ford.

The Battle of the Overpass set in motion a series of efforts that resulted in a crippling strike at the Rouge Plant and finally recognition of the UAW by Ford in 1941.

image above: UAW organizers pose for the press as members of the Ford Service Department approach. Moments after this photo was taken the union organizers were savagely beaten in the Battle of the Overpass. See more photos here:

* * *


Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, stated in a letter that he is unable to defend himself in prison in the face of U.S. attempts to obtain his extradition and possibly his death.

In the handwritten text, on May 13 and sent to British freelance journalist Gordon Dimmack, the Australian activist called on all those who share his ideals to fight “until the day he is free”.

“I’m helpless and I count on you and others of good character to save my life,” Assange said, lamenting that the days when he could organize his defense are behind him. “Everyone else should take my place,” he added.

The founder of WikiLeaks incarcerated in Belmarsh prison in the UK said that he had no access to a computer, Internet or any other type of reading source, and if he does, “it would only be for half an hour once a week”

“The other side? A superpower that has been preparing for nine years, with hundreds of people and millions of undisclosed dollars having been spent on the case,” Assange said just days before the Federal prosecutors in Virginia announced 17 new criminal charges that raise the potential sentences against him to 175 years.

“The U.S. government, or rather the unfortunate elements who hate truth, freedom and justice in it, want to pave the way for my extradition and death,” said the activist before recalling that his journalistic work has been nominated seven times for the Nobel Peace Prize. “In the long run, truth is all we have,” he said.

* * *

VALLEY TIMES PHOTO/caption dated May 30, 1956: Little boy asks poignant question as he clutches his dad's medal, won in Korean battle from which he never returned. Valley's bereaved joined the nation today in Memorial Day scenes like this one at Valhalla Cemetery in Burbank. At right is Portal of Folded Wings.

* * *

WHEN THE GERMANS IN 1940 were advancing we were at Bilignin and had no precise information concerning their progress through France. Could one believe the radio. We didn't. We heard cannon-fire. Then it grew louder. The next morning dressing at the window I saw German planes firing on French planes, not more than two miles away. This decided me to act in the way any forethoughtful housekeeper should. We would take the car into Belley and make provision for any eventuality as I had done that April morning of 1906 when the fire in San Francisco had broken out after the earthquake. Then I had been able to acquire two hams and my father had brought back four hundred cigarettes. With these one might, he said, not only exist but be able to be hospitable. So at Belley we bought two hams and hundreds of cigarettes, and some groceries --- the garden at Bilignin would provide fruit and vegetables. The main road was filled with refugees, just as it had been in 1914 and in 1917. Everything that was happening had already been experienced, like a half-awakening from nightmare. The firing grew louder and then the first armoured car flew past. Crushed, we took the little dusty road back to Bilignin. The widow Roux, who for many summers had been our devoted servant and later during the Occupation proved to be our loyal friend, opened the big iron gates to let the car through and we unloaded the provisions. What were we to do with the two enormous uncooked hams. In what could we cook them and in what way, so that they would keep indefinitely. We decided upon Eau-de-Vie de Marc for which the Bugey [region] is well known. It seemed madly extravagant but we lived on those two hams during the long lean winter that followed and well into the following spring, and the Eau-de-Vie de Marc in which they were cooked, carefully re-bottled and corked, toned up winter vegetables. We threw nothing, but absolutely nothing away, living through a war in an occupied country.

—Alice B. Toklas, 1954; from "The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book"

* * *

* * *


In an unprecedented and detailed bid to hold on to what had been a thriving tourist destination before the near-constant wars eliminated most of the tourists, local officials introduced water skiing to the small gaggle of tourists shuffling through the hot sands today. Here and there, gunshots exploded into the tannish air. A ragged band of skinny men in front of a disabled tank seemed to be holding out for Judaism as a sure-fire cure for local economic problems, but a membership-only club of necromancers, assembling for their holiday convention, seemed dead set against that idea, on moral grounds, they stressed.

This suggests what it is like to be in my head right now. Much of the support and labor that I thought I had assembled -- or thought that I had seen assembled -- evaporated in an instant when I needed some extra time to arrange for more comps to the Kate Wolf Music Festival at the end of June. For some reason utterly unknown to me, this touched off a family drama only slightly less consequential than the Second World War. It all happened within a couple of hours last night.

Through a sweet friend, I have rented a truck and a moving crew for next week's move into a residential care (a nursing) home. I am not likely to walk out. I have signed a no resuscitation order. I have a small bottle of sublingual morphine on the table beside me. Often in the room. To all appearances, this is serious.

I feel very alone, but that will end next weekend. Actually, it will begin to end tomorrow, as multiple visits from nurses and house cleaners and functionaries of hospice will come in to impress me with the range of their services. Meanwhile, the water awaits.

(Bruce Brady)

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* * *


Are they edible?

Marco McClean: Not really. They're a novelty-shop thing.. People pretend to enjoy it, then their mark tries it, and they chortle about it when he makes a face and spits it out, and then he's in the club and /he/ gets to snicker next time. It's an old game, from the Old Country, before people had video tic-tac-toe and teevee and stuff, and they had to make their own cruel fun. It's the same with goat cheese, and buttermilk, and anything with alcohol or kale in it. And a whole hot pepper. "Here, chew this up." "What is it?" "Just try it." (!)

You can make your own anchovies by a Depression-era recipe: mix a paste of table salt, baking soda and old cooking oil. You can make buttermilk out of spoiled milk, alcohol out of spoiled fruit or vegetables, kale out of any random weeds you pull up in the yard, and goat cheese out of --ya know what, I don't even want to tell you how to make goat cheese. Use your imagination. Every once in awhile I have heard someone say, in real life, really, "This tastes like actual ass." How would they know? It's probably close.

/Anything/ that comes from any part of a goat. Once I was at a place where they served ice cream made out of goat milk. Oh, my god. Horrible. Horrible.

And candy with coconut in it, which is weird because coconut is fine by itself, as is milk chocolate. Candy corn is obviously made of melted candles and syrup of ipecac.

Feel free to add to this short list of cruel food. Ruin the game for them.

Marco McClean

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* * *

HIT AND RUN THEATER Shows on June 28 & 29 at Matheson PAC

Dear Mendonesians,

Hit & Run Theater Matheson PAC Improv Shows June 28 & 29 On the weekend of Friday and Saturday, June 28 & 29, Hit & Run Theater will present two nights of improvisational comedy and music at the Matheson Performing Arts Center at 45096 Cahto St., near Mendocino High School in Mendocino. Both shows are at 7:30pm. The cast includes Jill Jahelka, Ken Krauss, Doug Nunn, Kathy O’Grady, Christine Samas, Dan Sullivan and Steve Weingarten, with a possible appearance by Nicole Paravicini. San Francisco keyboardist, Joshua Raoul Brody will supply improvised music and sound effects. General Admission is $18, with tickets for seniors and kids at $12 and all ages are welcome! For reservations or further information, call Doug Nunn at 707-937-0360, write him an email at, or write Doug Nunn or Hit and Run Theater on Facebook. We look forward to having you with us!

All the best,

Doug Nunn


  1. Betsy Cawn May 28, 2019

    “Beware the political consultants, for they are the devil’s pawn.” I believe the last word is supposed to be “spawn.”

  2. chuck dunbar May 28, 2019

    “BARBARA HOWE, head of Mendo Public Health, has received her walking papers. Ms. Howe, a highly respected, long-time employee of the agency, was summarily dismissed last week in the now familiar Give me your keys and leave massacre style we’ve often seen in Mendocino County. Ms. Howe was given ’16 minutes,’ we understand, to clear out. Dr. Gary Pace has resigned in protest.”

    Of course there’s a story underneath this no-doubt-sordid-action, and it brings to mind others (Diane Curry for one) who have been abruptly forced out, as you note. The allied resignation of Dr. Pace speaks to the wrong that has been done here. It’s yet another dictatorial act by Carmel Angelo that harms the functioning of the County workforce. It’s a shameful thing, and one wonders how long the BOS will continue to allow it to happen. It’s the “highly respected, long-time employees” who somehow keep the County going through all manner of mistakes and misdeeds by upper management. I wonder if Ms. Howe would offer an interview to the AVA about what really happened here. More folks who leave need to speak-out very clearly about what goes on beneath the surface of County government.

    • George Hollister May 28, 2019

      ” I wonder if Ms. Howe would offer an interview to the AVA about what really happened here.”

      Won’t happen if Ms Howe intends to get a job somewhere else. This is a never to change reality in the workforce, public and private. Ms. Howe might say something after she retires, but at that point she will have put her experience behind her. And there is the flip side of the same coin, nothing is going to be said from management.

  3. John Sakowicz May 28, 2019

    Is it really a mystery why Barbara Howe was fired?

    Measure B is a total bust!

    And in November, it will be two years that Measure B will have been a bust.

    In November, 2017, Measure B imposed an additional 0.5 percent tax for five years, and a 0.125 percent tax after that to fund mental health services. The total sales tax rate in Mendocino County is now 7.875 percent for five years — cumulative to all existing state taxes, local county and city taxes.

    What should we have gotten for that money?

    For the higher sales tax, county residents should have received the necessary infrastructure to support and stabilize individuals suffering from mental health illness, including addiction and neurological disorders; we should have received new psychiatric and other behavioral health facilities; and we should have received a regional health training facility to be used by behavioral health professionals and other first responders.

    Did we received what we were promised?


    Additionally, Measure B requires annual audits and an independent citizens’ oversight committee to ensure that the funds are used for the specific purpose of this ordinance and not spent for any other purposes.

    Is there any real oversight?

    Again, no.

    — John Sakowicz, Ukiah, CA

    • Lazarus May 28, 2019

      Measure B funds would be building a major facility in Ukiah and a satellite facility in Fort Bragg if one thing were different. Sheriff Allman’s single-mindedness obsession with having all the funds dumped into the Ole Howard Hospital in Willits, It’s as simple as that. The question has to be why?
      I’ll be curious to view the latest Measure B meeting video, if and when it’s ever made public, that meeting should be very interesting…
      As always,

      • James Marmon May 28, 2019


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