- HumCo Quake
- Cooler Week
- Rail-Trail Scam
- Jones 55
- Asphalt Fast-Track
- Outage Advice
- Ed Notes
- Bernie's Speech
- Boonville Faint
- Village Reminders
- Market Watch
- Friday Forum
- Place Names
- Howe Fund
- Willits Parade
- Go Legal
- Yesterday's Catch
- Recycle Plastic
- Medical Smokes
- Biloxi School
- Race Relations
- Batshit Crazy
- Waking Up
- Trump Despair
- Uber Spider
- Happiest Moment
- Marco Radio
- Climate Change
- Human Decline
- Oligarch 20
A MAGNITUDE 5.5 EARTHQUAKE hit off the coast of Humboldt County on Saturday evening, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The agency says the earthquake struck at 8:53 p.m. at a spot 17.3 miles southwest of Scotia, a town of 850 people. The earthquake had a depth of 5.6 miles and was felt throughout the region, including in Mendocino and Fort Bragg. There were no immediate reports of damage. (Associated Press)
INLAND TEMPERATURES will remain above normal today while coastal areas stay cool under abundant sunshine and northerly breezes. A cooling trend is expected for the interior tomorrow and into next week as a broad trough develops over the Pacific Northwest. (National Weather Service)
WHAT’S GOING ON WITH THE NORTHCOAST RAIL-TRAIL PROJECT/SCAM?
by Mark Scaramella
Senate Bill No 356, Introduced February 19, 2019, amended in the State Senate on May 2019, (D-McGuire) — “This bill would require the [North Coast Railroad] Authority, within 90 days of removing all of its debts, liabilities, and contractual obligations, to convey and transfer its rights, interests, privileges, and title, lien free, relating to a specified rail right-of-way, its licenses and certificates of public convenience and necessity, any common carrier obligations held by the authority or an associated freight operator, and the railroad assets the authority owns to the [Sonoma-Marin Area Rapid Transit-‘SMART’] district.”
“Section 93029 is added to the Government Code, to read:
93029 — Within 90 days of removing all of its debts, liabilities, and contractual obligations, the authority shall convey and transfer all of its rights, interests, privileges, and title, lien free, relating to its rail right-of-way south of mile post 89.0 [the Sonoma-Mendocino County line], including any associated real property, rail easements, and branch or spur lines, its licenses and certificates of public convenience and necessity, any common carrier obligations held by the authority or an associated freight operator, and the railroad assets the authority owns to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District, created pursuant to Section 105010 of the Public Utilities Code. … This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.”
According to a recent article in the Press Democrat (the only local paper even trying to cover this story even though, as PD reporter Kevin Fixler noted in his May 27 report, “One of NCRA’s primary creditors is the Northwestern Pacific Railroad Co., which since 2006 has owned the exclusive contract to operate freight on the line. The company’s managing partner [Doug Bosco] claims more than $6 million of NCRA’s debt is owed to the freight operator, primarily from loans NWP Co. provided to restore the railway to carry trains starting in 2011. Under its freight agreement with the state agency, NWP Co. holds a renewable contract that does not expire until 2031, according to co-owner Doug Bosco, a Santa Rosa attorney and former North Coast congressman. The freight company has options to extend its lease for a combined 70 years. Terms of the original contract do not require any payments from NWP Co. to NCRA until the freight operator reaches $5 million in annual revenues — a threshold it has never met. Bosco, an investor in Sonoma Media Investments, which owns the Press Democrat, declined to detail yearly earnings other than to call NWP Co. ‘profitable’.”
Fixler is treading on tricky ground here. His paper is owned in large part by Bosco who stands to get repaid millions of dollars — with relatively high interest and possible option buyouts — because Bosco’s company, NWP, is owed $6 million of the railroad’s apparent $8 million debt mostly for track repairs on tracks that have only seen a few token trains for decades.
We first wrote about this NWP/Bosco debt in 2013 when dissident NCRA Board member Bernie Meyers blew the whistle on the NCRA/Bosco scam.
Few people will recall that back in 2012 Meyers called for “a comprehensive audit of the NCRA to determine if the NCRA is providing what it should provide to the state and taxpayers and if it should continue to exist.”
Is someone finally heeding Meyers’ call — a call that all his NCRA colleagues denounced at the time — albeit buried in the Great Redwood Trail proposal?
Fixler also reported: “McGuire’s bill follows related legislation sponsored by McGuire in 2018 that Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law in September providing for study of the trail proposal and transition of freight rail oversight in the region to SMART. The law also launched an audit into the North Coast Rail Authority, the Ukiah-based public agency that currently oversees regional freight rail operations and which has struggled under mounting, multimillion-dollar debt. ‘We’ve always known this project was going to be complicated because NCRA has never been managed well,’ said McGuire. ‘We are taking the necessary steps to wind down this financially bankrupt public agency. It’s the right thing to do for taxpayers and we know it’s going to take time to be able to secure the funds to complete this project.’
Fixler was referring to McGuire’s 2018 Senate Bill, SB 1029, and the “study” being referred to in that Bill was: “13978.9. (a) Upon the appropriation of moneys by the Legislature for these purposes, the Transportation Agency, in consultation with the Natural Resources Agency, shall conduct an assessment of the North Coast Railroad Authority to provide information necessary to determine the most appropriate way to dissolve the North Coast Railroad Authority and dispense with its assets and liabilities. The Transportation Agency shall report to the Legislature before July 1, 2020, on its findings and recommendations from the assessment. The report shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:
(1) An assessment of the North Coast Railroad Authority’s debts, liabilities, contractual obligations, and litigation.
(2) An assessment of the North Coast Railroad Authority’s assets, including property, rights-of-way, easements, and equipment.
(3) An assessment of the North Coast Railroad Authority’s freight contractor lease, including the contractor’s assets and liabilities to the extent that information is available.
(4) A preliminary assessment of the viability of constructing a trail on the entirety of, or a portion of, the property, rights-of-way, or easements owned by the North Coast Railroad Authority, and recommendations relating to the possible construction of a trail, including both of the following:
(A) Options for railbanking and the governance structure or ownership structure for a new or successor entity that is necessary to railbank property, rights-of-way, and easements along the rail corridor.
(B) A preliminary assessment of which portions of the terrain along the rail corridor may be suitable for a trail.
(5) An assessment of the options for transferring the southern portion of the rail corridor to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District and recommendations on the specific assets and liabilities that could be transferred, including rights or abilities to operate freight rail.
(b) The Transportation Agency and the Natural Resources Agency may request the Department of General Services, the Department of Finance, or any department within their agencies, or contract with other entities, to perform the work the agencies deem necessary to carry out the duties described in this section. Any work done by the Department of General Services, the Department of Finance, or any department within the agencies pursuant to such a request may be conducted using the power and authority of the requested department.
(c) The Transportation Agency shall prioritize the assessment of the southern portion of the rail corridor and may separately report information related to the potential transfer of the southern portion of the rail corridor to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District. It is the intent of the Legislature that information and recommendations regarding the potential transfer of the southern portion of the rail corridor to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District be provided as expeditiously as possible and not be delayed due to the potential complexity of assessing the northern portion of the rail corridor.
(d) (1) A report to be submitted pursuant to this section shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795.”
Notice that what Fixler calls an “audit” or a “study” is referred to in this 2018’s SB 1029 as an “assessment.”
Fixler continued, “The audit is expected to be completed in June 2020. NCRA’s known debts top $8 million, but could be as high as $12 million. ‘There is no way in hell I would ever trust the numbers that they have advanced,’ said McGuire, ‘which is why we’ve brought on an independent auditor to verify the total debt owed by NCRA. This is an unfortunate but necessary step to unravel the finances and shut them down.”
Now we’re told that McGuire has “brought on an independent auditor” which is conveniently not named. 2018’s SB 1029 called for an assessment to be conducted by Caltrans. But the 2019 follow-up bill, SB 356, makes no mention of an “independent auditor.” SB 356 only calls for an audit after the transfer is complete: “[The SMART Board shall] Cause a postaudit of the financial transactions and records of the district to be made at least annually by a certified public accountant.”
We’d like to believe that Senataor McGuire is looking out for the taxpayers’ interests. But with the very clever former Congressman Bosco in the loop, we are skeptical:
If the “audit” was “launched” in 2018, why would it take until June of 2020 to complete?
Who is the “independent auditor”? All we see in McGuire’s actual bill language is the far-from-independent “assessment” being conducted by Caltrans.
What’s this new reference to “could be as high as $12 million”? Where’d that number come from? Could Bosco be angling for a bigger payback than the NCRA even recognizes with an audit that substantiates his higher claim?
There’s no indication that the audit or assessment or whatever it is will be made public, which, if they were truly working in the taxpayers interest they’d be trumpeting.
Since “NCRA has never been managed well,” as McGuire correctly says, why is he turning over the southern railway section to SMART — perhaps the most poorly run rail system in the state? SMART hasn’t produced anything close to a viable passenger rail service even with their huge subsidies and sales tax revenues and which still doesn’t connect with any other NorCal rail system.
The Great Redwood Trail is supposed to replace the northern section of the NCRA right-of-way from Cloverdale to Eureka overseen by a new group of Democratic party hacks, er, Board. McGuire and his legislative colleagues are putting a lot of energy and money into this “dream” that seems quite impractical when closely examined. We doubt it will ever come to pass —these politicians are incapable of actually doing anything besides “dreaming” and spending money — and it could wind up coming with a price tag that includes paying Doug Bosco up to $12 million.
CHRIS JONES (R), FORMERLY OF BOONVILLE, CELEBRATES HIS 55TH BIRTHDAY WITH FRIEND RYAN WISE OF PORTLAND, OREGON.
To the Editor of the Ukiah Daily Journal:
I just read the lead story in the Daily Journal: “Code Enforcement Program Improving.” This was an appalling omission of coverage, and a disservice to the public. Ironically, the main story from Tuesday’s meeting was that the Board voted to scrap the code altogether by “Fast-Tracking” plans for an asphalt plant at the top of Ridgewood Grade.
Your article even did not contain the words “Harris Quarry,” “Ridgewood Ranch,” or “asphalt plant.”
This is disgraceful.
Here is the story your readers deserved:
Board votes to fast-track Ridgewood Grade Asphalt Plant
On Tuesday, June 18, the Mendocino County Board voted to skip the step of requiring a review by the County Planning Commission for an asphalt plant at the summit of Ridgewood Grade along Highway 101 between Willits and Ukiah.
This item was only inserted into the Board’s agenda on the previous Friday. There was no publicity about this, and members of the general public only found out about it on Sunday.
This subject took up several hours of the Board’s time on Tuesday, far longer than any of the items reported in the Journal’s completely insufficient coverage.
The Board used a pretty neat trick to pull this off: they divided the subject into two parts:
In the first part, members of the public were invited to speak, for three minutes each. There were about 15 people who spoke in opposition to this move.
No one from the public was there to support it, only the Northern Aggregates rep and their attorney, Tina Wallace. (I suspect they didn’t expect the word to get out, and so did not anticipate any opposition at the meeting.)
The second part was in the form of an interview between Northern Aggregates’ attorney and The Board. The public was not allowed to respond. This lasted for at least a half hour.
In this second session, Ms. Wallace introduced new points that could have easily been refuted had the public been afforded the opportunity to respond. She pulled out a last-minute red herring by announcing that Harris Quarry would have to close and lay off its 81 employees by July if this were not approved immediately. Later she said that, well, they would have to close down whether the approval was granted or not.
As it was, there was no firm evidence presented, no statistics, no facts, except for when Second District Supervisor John McCowen announced that he did not know what the extra expense of delay would be, but “I suspect it’s several million.” And so he voted according to his “suspicions,” and not the facts.
Fifth District Supervisor Ted Williams gamely tried to get the Board to see reason. His understanding of the problem seemed very clear. He alone voted against this evisceration of the public’s interests. Third District Supervisor John Haschak might have voted against it as well, but he had recused himself because of “conflict of interest.” But that would not have mattered by itself, since the other three supes voted in favor of this proposal.
This hearing was a sham, and the Journal’s coverage of it was less than abysmal. Shame on both. The public deserves better.
ON-LINE ADVICE FOR POWER OUTAGES: Get a Honda 2k and a bunch of power cords with splitters.
Also a bunch of candles.
But as long as the tv and internet is powered up screw it.
Once in the nineties there was a snowstorm and a freeze and the power was down for two weeks.
A backup generator is a basic necessity.
Unless you live in a city.
But even then,….
IN THE JUNE 24th issue of The New Yorker, the Talk of the Town's columnist, Amy Davidson Sorkin, nicely expresses the mag's middle of the road extremism with this line: "…Bernie Sanders, who offers an ideological alternative to Biden's moderation." The descriptive “Ideological” implies that The Bern, the tamest socialist there ever was, is Lenin reincarnated. Who else but an ideologue with all the unyielding rigidity the term implies would challenge a reasonable guy like Biden? One more example, it seems to me, of how far to the political right the discussion has shifted.
IN THE SAME edition of the magazine, there's Sheelah Kolhatkar with an admiring profile of Elizabeth Warren who, along with Sanders, are the only two Democrats running for president who scare all the right people, and Warren the only candidate who has a specific plan for harnessing free enterprise in the general interest. The piece is fair to Warren but chock full of quotes from financial big shots worrying that she's too extreme, a regular Che Guevara who just might bring down the whole house.
EXTREME? Here's the candidate: "The banks were getting away with so much, without any accountability. Here they had just gotten this huge bailout, and no one was was insisting on replacing the CEOs and forcing some of these banks to own up to what they'd done.” [With that $750 billion bailout.] "We could have fixed our roads and bridges and public transportation. We could have launched universal preschool and made state universities affordable again. We could have doubled our federal investments in medical research and scientific research for the net twenty years. Markets are teriffic at spurring innovation, driving down costs, and producing consumer benefits IFthose markets operate according to some basic rules."
SPECIFICALLY, Warren wants "a wealth tax of two per cent on assets above $50 million of 75,000 richest families in the country, and a surcharge for billionaires."
WARREN'S early life was lived with the wolf at the door. She's the only candidate in years who met the Repo Man. Her stand for universal daycare arises out of her own experience as a single mother, and would be almost like hitting the lottery for many women.
CAVEAT, and go ahead with the accusation of sexism, but I wish someone associated with Warren's campaign would get her to tone down her hyper-presentations. When she bounds on stage with a greeting that cracks glass for miles… Well, she comes off as kinda nuts. From the diaphragm, Liz, the diaphragm.
THE AVA bounced two checks recently with the Bank of America, with whom we've conducted our modest financial business for some time. Our treasurer is fond of a teller at our branch, an older woman who is also a devoted reader of the Boonville weekly. (In Mendo, we banked with the Redwood Credit Union, the closest thing to a people's bank there is. The cavernous Ukiah Bank of America is closed. Only an atm machine is left at the back door.) Anyway, for our two over-drafts, the BofA paid both checks but charged us $35 for each one, and one of the bounced checks was for $36! Seventy bucks!
ORGANIZED crime loan sharks, if you are lucky enough to have one in the neighborhood, charge big interest, but you can negotiate with them at the risk of your knees. The legitimate (sic) banks charge criminal rates of interest but you can't negotiate with them. Unfortunately for me, the criminals I know are unorganized, and invest only in no return white powders rather than usury.
PG&E'S announcement that its customers in high risk fire areas should be prepared for outages that could last for as long as five days at a time seems fairly specific as to which areas it considers high risk. The Anderson Valley certainly has areas that qualify, but central Boonville? Maybe. We're debating whether or not to invest in a generator in case the power monopoly shuts down our section of Mendocino County. We're solarized but still routed through PG&E's grid. If it goes, we go, and given the spectacle I saw at Ukiah CostCo the other day as three separate parties walked out the door with several generators each, I thought, well, gee, what are the odds we'd ever use the thing? If we were up Nash Mill or the Holmes Ranch or Deer Meadow we'd need more than a generator, certainly, but ground zero Boonville?
BERNIE SANDERS’ DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISM SPEECH WAS A LANDMARK
From housing and health insecurity to poverty wages to the racism of the criminal justice system to the overwhelming reality of climate change, it’s clear that things are unraveling. It is a feeling that is experienced in the daily lives of ordinary people and yet is regularly made invisible by the political class and the economic elite. Sanders exposed these conditions as a way of life for millions of Americans, and he named the system at their root — capitalism.
18-YEAR-OLD FEMALE ILL AT BOONVILLE HOTEL
Ground & Air Ambulances Dispatched
The scanner said (9:26 am) the Anderson Valley Fire Department (and ambulance), CalFire and air ambulance CalStar 4 were dispatched to 14050 Highway 128 (Boonville Hotel) for an 18-year-old female in medical distress. She is located in the laundry room to the rear.
CalStar 4's estimated time to the landing zone at the Boonville Airport was 9:43 am.
The air ambulance was canceled - the patient will be transported by the AV ground ambulance to milepost 6.89 on Highway 253 for a rendezvous with ALS ambulance #9111 for transport to the Ukiah Valley Medical Center.
Apparently, from scanner chatter, this young woman drove over from Ukiah to visit her mother and felt faint - but never lost consciousness.
GWYN SMITH REMINDS US...
The next meeting of AV Village will be at Lauren's on Sunday July 14th, 4:00 to 5:30, as usual.
This meeting should be fun. Several local writers, from amateur to more professional, will share some of their work. I think you will be pleasantly surprised by the author's presentations.
These are people you know! (But may not know they write)
So come and enjoy,
AV Village Monthly Sundays
Planning Tomorrow, Enjoying Today!
AV Village Literary Soirée
After social time and snacks, the AV Village will host a literary event during which local writers will share some of their poetry and prose: local authors to include Muriel Ellis, Helen Papke, Jerry Karp, Cindy Wilder, and possibly more! (If you are a local author and would like to share your work in this or future AVV literary events, just let Lauren know.)
For more information visit our website: www.andersonvalleyvillage.org
Like us on Facebook: The Anderson Valley Village
PS. Look for a change of venue in the future
PPS. POSTPONEMENT of book conversation — The book conversation (re: ‘Being Mortal’) scheduled for this coming Monday, June 24th at 11 has unavoidably been postponed (not cancelled), and will be rescheduled. I'll let you know when I know. Sorry for any inconvenience. — Gwyn Smith
Portfolio growth — Leaves me wonder how well our Retirement Fund did:
AT THE BEGINNING - The ongoing bull market for the S&P 500, which began on 3/10/09, has gained +441% (total return) over its 10-year, 3.5-month duration. The stock index gained +72% during the first 12 months of the bull run, including +27% during the first month of the bull market.
(source: BTN Research)
MENDOCINO TV WAS AT FRIDAY FORUM AT FORT BRAGG MILL SITE
NO ROOTS, NO HISTORY
One of the pleasures of shopping for books at used bookstores is finding books I would never find at a bookstore selling new books. That has definitely been the case for me in regards to California history books, and specifically books about the origins of California place names.
In the last year and a half I have found three very interesting books on this subject: "California's Spanish Place Names — What They Mean and How They Got There" by Barbara and Rudy Marinacci (1997); a 1930 hardcover edition of "Spanish and Indian Place Names of California — Their Meaning and Their Romance" by Nellie Van de Grift Sanchez; and perhaps the seminal book on the subject "California Place Names — The Origin and Etymology of Current Geographical Names" by Erwin G. Gudde (1889-1969), who was a faculty member in the German department at UC Berkeley. I bought the revised fourth edition of the book published in 1998 by UC Press and revised and enlarged by William Bright, who is professor emeritus of linguistics and anthropology at UCLA. It is a large hardbound book of 470 pages with a plastic-covered book jacket (bought at Treehorn Books in downtown Santa Rosa). There is also a small paperback version of this book by William Bright, "1500 California Place Names — Their Origin and Meaning", also published in 1998 by UC Press.
I figure many AVA readers would be interested in these books knowing that many Anderson Valley residents have roots in this region or in California, and knowing that Bruce Anderson has written books about Mendocino County history and also knowing that some AVA columnists like Katy Tahja and Malcolm Macdonald write about local history.
Down here in white collar professional dominated Marin County, quite a few residents are not from Northern California and do not have roots here, they're here for social and economic reasons and don't care much about local history. At the Protestant church in Kentfield I attended from 2012 to 2015 composed of professional class families, the majority of the adult congregation members were from other parts of the country.
Most likely a good portion of them will eventually leave the Bay Area or California. Realistically, for the remainder of my life I'm probably going to have more in common socially with others from Northern California than "immigrants" from other states (including Southern California).
DEFEND BARBARA HOWE
To the Editor:
On Wednesday, June 19, the workplace violence restraining order case of Tammy Moss-Chandler v. Barbara Howe, became a new low for Mendocino County.
The Honorable Jeanine B. Nadel of the Mendocino County Superior Court, General Civil Limited and Unlimited Civil, and Probate Division, heard this case. It was a clear and fraudulent attempt by the county to get a permanent restraining order issued against the former, and highly respected, director of county public health, Barbara Howe.
A little background. A few weeks ago, Ms. Howe was wrongly terminated, and the county's medical director, Dr. Gary Pace, subsequently resigned in protest in solidarity with Ms. Howe.
As always, County CEO Carmel Angelo was Wizard behind the Curtain.
Ms. Howe's firing was only the latest morale blow to the county's understaffed and overworked public health department which has not had competent leadership for over a decade until Ms. Howe and Dr. Pace. Ms. Howe and Dr. Pace distinguished themselves, among other achievements, in leading county public health through our recent catastrophic forest fires, and in fighting in the opioid epidemic, teen suicide, and child abuse.
It should be noted, the manner in which Ms. Howe was terminated was shocking. She was given no good reason for her termination -- none -- and she was handed a letter of resignation. She was then told she had fifteen minutes to clear out her desk. She was escorted past her staff to the door by security. Finally, the county sought a restraining order and her photo was posted in all the workplace break rooms.
In fifteen minutes, Ms. Howe had become one of the county's Ten Most Wanted.
This "walk of shame" to the door and the wanted poster were designed by CEO Angelo to suppress any rebellion within the ranks of county public health. The director of county human resources, Heidi Dunham, handled the details. Ms. Dunham is a reliable soldier for Carmel Angelo.
In her court on June 19, Judge Nadel suppressed a public hearing on the matter of the permanent restraining order. Reporters were in the courtroom, and naturally the county had a lot to hide. So Judge Nadel hurriedly called the lawyers into her chambers. They stayed there for a long time.
Judge Nadel, it should be noted, was Mendocino County Counsel before being elevated to sit on the Superior Court. And Nadel is a close personal friend of Carmel Angelo. Apparently, Nadel didn’t want the county’s malfeasance issues going on the record in open court. Best to keep Carmel Angelo's bullying a secret behind closed doors. Keep in mind, wrongful termination -- and the fraud, deception, and perfidy used to cover up a wrongful termination -- is an intentional tort.
The lawyers stayed back there in Nadel's chambers a long time. Nadel kept them there.
When the lawyers emerged, Nadel recommended that the parties sign the Standard Settlement Agreement and keep the details private. Nadel was disinclined to put the witness back on the stand.
What was Mendocino County hiding? What was County CEO Carmel Angelo hiding?
First, there is recent grand jury report about the Board of Supervisors ceding too much authority to the County CEO. Carmel Angelo runs the county. But she is not elected.
The report can be found at the following link: https://www.mendocinocounty.org/home/showdocument?id=28581
Then there is the Barbara Howe saga. It appears that the rumors that Ms. Howe was given a letter of resignation to sign and told, “If you don’t sign it and we terminate you, good luck finding a job at age 62. We'll kill your career. You'll never work again.”
I’m glad Ms. Howe stood up to Heidi Dunham and Carmel Angelo. Angelo is brutal, she goes for the kill. She has disappeared many county workers before Ms. Howe, including her own former chief deputy, Alan Flora.
Who is Barbara Howe, you may ask? Let me quote Medie Jesena Parrott, pediatric nurse practitioner in Ukiah, from an editorial that appeared in the Mendo Voice:
"She [Barbara Howe] has eliminated redundant services and improved the department’s capacity to meet the medical needs of citizens in a shelter during a fire; she has pre-deployed air scrubbers to inland schools to protect the health of kids with asthma; and she has made sure that at-risk folks experiencing homelessness got the hepatitis A vaccine. She and Dr. Pace have worked with the Sheriff to bring medical treatment for substance use to county inmates while in the jail, thereby reducing recidivism for drug crimes. Her other achievements include pursuing national public health accreditation, bringing modern epidemiologic surveillance programs here so that Public Health staff can monitor local emergency room data in real time, and committing Public Health financial resources to the county’s Community Health Improvement Plan."
I’m passing the hat to help Barbara Howe pay for a wrongful termination lawsuit against Mendocino County. I’m in for $100.
Ms. Howe’s lawyer is John C. Rarick at 107 West Perkins Street, Ste 16, Ukiah, CA, 95482-4855. Very capable guy. Georgetown University. He will win reinstatement for Barbara Howe.
Does anyone care to join me?
John Sakowicz, Ukiah CA
AS WE APPROACH our new exhibit opening of Frontier Days: A Collector's Journey on Saturday, June 29th, here is a fun fact.
Did you know?
In the early years of Willits Frontier Days, the parade was held over the course of the event. Not only was the parade held on the 4th of the July, it was also held daily on the 2-3 days of events before or after July 4th.
(Mendocino County Museum)
‘BETTER GO LEGAL’
LOS ANGELES — Marijuana shoppers are going to be getting a message from California regulators: Go legal.
Aiming to slow illegal pot sales that are undercutting the nation's largest licensed market, California is kicking off a public information campaign — Get #weedwise — that encourages consumers to verify that their purchases are tested and legal.
Ads will be hitting social media sites and billboards promoting a state website where shoppers can quickly check if a shop is licensed — CApotcheck.com.
The advertising campaign makes a simple argument: You don't know what you're getting if you buy illegal products.
One ad says, "What's in your weed shouldn't be a mystery. Shop licensed cannabis retailers only."
The new push in the fight against illegal cannabis sales will be formally announced Friday at a Los Angeles forum featuring industry leaders, regulators and elected officials.
The campaign "will directly impact consumer safety by clarifying that only cannabis purchased from licensed retailers has met the state's safety standards," Bureau of Cannabis Control Chief Lori Ajax said in a statement.
The ads are also intended to telegraph a warning to illicit shops and underground growers: Get licensed to operate in the legal market, or shut down.
California kicked off broad legal sales Jan. 1, 2018. But the illegal market has continued to thrive, in part because consumers can avoid steep tax rates by buying in unlicensed dispensaries.
But there's a trade-off for saving a buck. Illegal products have not met strict state testing standards and could be tainted by mold, pesticides, heavy metals — even human waste.
"Do you know what's hiding in your counterfeit edibles?" one ad asks. "Shop licensed cannabis retailers only."
Agency spokesman Alex Traverso said the ads are part of a three-pronged campaign to eventually corral illegal sales — the others are enforcement, including shutting down illegal shops and farms, and quickly licensing businesses that want to enter the legal economy.
The state is spending an initial $1.7 million on the campaign and hopes to "get it in front of as many eyeballs as possible," Traverso said.
The state has been under pressure by the legal industry to do more to stop illegal sales. By some estimates, Los Angeles has hundreds of illegal shops and cultivation sites.
No one is predicting the campaign will bring illicit sales to a halt, but it's being seen as another step to aid legal businesses as the state transitions from what was once a largely illegal economy into a multibillion-dollar, regulated marketplace.
(Michael Blood, AP)
CATCH OF THE DAY, JUNE 22, 2019
CHRISTOPHER ASHURST, Ukiah. Failure to appear, probation revocation.
SHAWN BIAS, Fort Bragg. Under influence, disorderly conduct-alcohol. (Frequent flyer.)
MARIO FUENTES, Ukiah. DUI, suspended license (for DUI).
OSCAR FUENTES IV, Redding/Ukiah. Stolen vehicle, parole violation.
VICTOR GUTIERREZ-CAMACHO, Petaluma/Ukiah. DUI.
JACOB HEATH, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
CODY KNIGHT, Ukiah. Resisting.
STEVEN LEDESMA, Ukiah. Failure to appear.
STEPHANIE LYLE, Ukiah. Domestic battery, battery, unauthorized entry into dwelling without owner’s consent.
CRAIG MOUNTAIN, Willits. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
JESSICA NORTON, Ukiah. Under influence, paraphernalia, no license, shuriken, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)
LEODES VANBUREN, Ukiah. Elder abuse, criminal threats.
I can remember when soda bottles and cans didn’t have a return deposit. Roadsides were covered with unsightly cans and bottles. Now rarely do you see them along the road.
I think a similar solution could be used with plastic. Charge a tax that will cover the cost of disposing and recycling plastic.
Plastic is too ingrained in our society to tell people that they can’t have plastic combs, razors, etc. I know bags are the main concern, but we have many other plastic disposables. We need an economic incentive to deal with the problem.
I believe that manufactures should pay the tax. I know they’ll pass the cost on, but some will find cheaper ways to get products to consumers without using plastic in order to outsell or offer lower prices than their competitors.
At the least, a tax would raise money that could be earmarked to start cleaning up the environment. We can start small and build on bags first. But that includes that bag of frozen peas, corn — whatever plastic bag it is.
And last but not least, that doesn’t mean disposing of plastic in a different country. It means recycling it.
Lynda Jo Sheehan
HERE'S A PATIENT buying cigarettes from his hospital bed in the 1950s.
BILOXI DAYS: The Ralph Johns School of Management (Part 1)
by Mark Scaramella
“My job is to kick E-8s in the ass.” — Chief Master Sergeant (E-9) Ralph Johns
My first assignment as a freshly-minted aircraft maintenance officer at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi in 1968 was essentially a training position as Officer in Charge of the Maintenance Analysis section. With a staff of six to eight military and civilian analysts, plus several keypunch operators who entered thousands of daily aircraft maintenance records into the base computer via old-fashioned punch cards, we examined trends and equipment problems, produced reports on maintenance activities and budgets and made action recommendations.
After about three months in that position, Lieutenant Colonel Slaughter, the grizzled old Chief of Maintenance with only a few months to go before retirement, strolled into my cubicle late one Friday afternoon after everyone else had left and announced, "Scaramella: you're taking over Field Maintenance Monday morning."
What? It came as a complete surprise. I was a green 24-year-old maintenance officer with no management experience, and no experience with the two dozen specialty repair shops making up Field Maintenance, but I was suddenly faced with the daunting prospect of managing almost 300 military and civilian maintenance technicians.
"What happened to Major Traxler, sir?" I asked.
Major Traxler was a seasoned pilot who had been in charge of Field Maintenance.
"He’s retiring," Colonel Slaughter replied dismissively.
"Isn’t Chief Master Sergeant Johns the Field Maintenance superintendent?"
Chief Master Sergeant Ralph Johns, who had been assigned to Field Maintenance a month earlier, had a widespread reputation throughout the maintenance organization as being one of the toughest, bluntest, and most competent maintenance managers in the Air Force. And I was now his boss?
"Yep. And he does a good job. Just don't fuck it up, Scaramella."
And with that, Colonel Slaughter left my office.
The following Monday morning I walked into Chief Johns's spartan office with its beat up old gray desk, a telephone, a stack of legal pads, and five minimally padded gray steel chairs.
"Good morning, Chief."
After a few introductory niceties, my curiosity kicked in. I had been thinking, with some trepidation, about meeting the legendary maintenance man all weekend.
I had heard that Major Traxler was an alcoholic, and I'd heard complaints that he was "ROAD" (retired on active duty) and that he seldom if ever responded to requests from outside organizations, whether it was quality control, maintenance analysis, the base safety office, or any other agency. To quote from Catch-22, the major was in when he was out, out when he was in.
From my brief time in maintenance analysis, I hadn't seen a single piece of paper originating out of Field Maintenance. And Traxler had become a no-show at an increasing number of morning stand up status meetings.
I had also heard that Chief Johns had some vague history with Colonel Slaughter and Colonel Slaughter’s boss, Colonel Taylor, and I suspected that Major Traxler's departure might have been initiated by Chief Johns.
"By the way, Chief, did you have anything to do with Major Traxler's departure?"
Johns seemed amused: "Could be."
"So how long do you think I’ll last?"
"We'll see, sir."
Over the next few months I found myself learning maintenance management from what I later came to appreciate as The Ralph Johns School of Management.
In the military, there are nine enlisted ranks from E-1 to E-9. In the mid-1950s, the Air Force created what they call "super grades” (E-8 and E-9) and phased out "warrant officers," former NCO’s who had been promoted into officer-like jobs but without a formal officer commission.
Air Force NCO ranks range from E-4, Sergeant; E-5, Staff Sergeant; E-6, Tech Sergeant; E-7, Master Sergeant and the super-grades, E-8-Senior Master Sergeant, and E-9, Chief Master Sergeant.
Chief Johns was the sixth E-8 in the entire Air Force to be promoted to E-9: Chief Master Sergeant. He was very proud of his rank. He had earned every stripe. He had over 28 years of experience in aircraft maintenance, having enlisted originally in the Army just before World War II. He used to joke that he made (Army) corporal six times.
Johns had been such a wild character in his youth that he got into fights regularly and had been busted from Corporal to Private and then promoted to Corporal again six times before it stuck.
He could have passed for an old-fashioned heavyweight boxer at around 6-4 and 240 pounds with a Marine style brush cut that was turning gray.
Johns was your basic imposing figure. Everyone knew him, no one wanted to get on the wrong side of him.
At the time I met him Johns he was a couple of years from mandatory retirement at 30 years of service. Keesler would be his last duty assignment.
I once asked Sergeant Johns how he saw his job as maintenance superintendent.
"My job is to kick E-8s in the ass," he grumbled.
Basically, the Johns approach was to make sure that supervisors and shop chiefs did their jobs. If supervisors did their jobs, then their subordinates did theirs and so forth down the chain of command. Line mechanics and technicians would then take care of themselves without his direct concern. As far as I could tell it was a very effective management style.
For a minor but memorable example, one day I mentioned to Chief Johns that I had noticed some graffiti in the men’s room in the fabrication branch building (with sheet metal, welding, machine, paint and related shops).
“Did you see the graffiti in the men’s room, Chief?”
“Yes, sir. I’m having the shop chiefs clean it up.”
“What? Why them? The shop chiefs didn’t have anything to do with the graffiti, did they?”
“It’ll stop,” replied Johns, looking at me like I was a too thick to understand.
It did stop. Johns knew that if the shop chiefs had to clean it up, they’d figure out who did it and how to stop it.
One of Chief Johns’s most impressive characteristics was his quick response to problems. The moment he heard about any kind of difficulty (typically over the maintenance control radio-monitor speaker in his office, or via a phone call from a shop chief), Johns was on it. He would jump out of his chair and jog to wherever the problem was and start barking orders, starting with demanding to see whichever shop chiefs or supervisors were involved. He would then summarize the problem for whoever was there, confirm with everyone what it was, fold his arms, and announce: “We’re going to stand here until this is solved, and I don’t want any finger-pointing.”
Blaming the other guy was unacceptable. All of Field Maintenance’s supervisors knew this — you didn’t want a pissed off Chief Johns showing up in a shop or on the flight-line making demands. Best to solve problems before they got to him.
Johns also had an intimidating drill-sergeant mode that he engaged whenever the situation called for ass-chewing. He used it on anybody and everybody when necessary no matter what rank.
One day we were out on the flightline when a flight chief told us that Field Maintenance was going to have to do an “over-g” inspection because a pilot had punched off the g-meter before the flightline mechanic had a chance to look at.
The g-meter showed how high the g-forces (gravity) were on a given flight. Steep dives and pull-ups, for example, can put extra load on the wings and airframe. The g-meter had a re-set button that pilots were not supposed to touch. After each flight the flight mechanic would make a note of the g-reading and decide what to do. If the reading exceeded a certain numerical standard then the airframe had been over-stressed and it had to be brought into the hanger for a thorough structural “over-g inspection” to see if any damage had been done. The policy was that if a pilot re-set (“punched off”) the g-meter before the mechanic saw it, we had to assume that the pilot had screwed up and re-set it to cover up an in-flight problem — which meant a time-consuming over-g inspection.
Chief Johns didn’t like having to take a plane out of service and have his mechanics waste hours checking it just because a pilot punched off the g-meter.
“Who did that?” Chief Johns asked the flight chief. The flight chief pointed to a Lieutenant Colonel strolling back to the ops building.
“Sir!” Johns shouted, jogging over towards the Colonel.
“Did you just punch off your g-meter, sir?”
“I guess so, Sergeant.”
“You asshole! Do you know what we have to do now? We have to take this plane into the hangar and my people have to spend hours taking it apart and inspecting all the bolts and spars and so forth!”
“Sorry?! You’re sorry?!” Johns now had his nose right up in the pilot’s face. “How’d you like to come over and help?”
The pilot stood his ground. “I don’t think I’d be much help, Sergeant.”
“You pilots don’t give a shit what kind of work you cause us. I’m sick of it. Who’s your boss?”
“It was a simple mistake, Sergeant. I’m sorry. Really.”
“WHO’S YOUR BOSS?”
“Colonel Wilson, ops commander.”
“Come with me. We’re going to talk to him.”
“You’re over-reacting, Sergeant.”
“The hell I am! This kind of thing has to stop.”
“I won’t do it again, Sergeant. I get it.”
Johns replied, “I doubt it. But ok — sir.” (His voice was dripping with sarcasm on the word “sir.”) “But if I hear about this again with you I’m going to demand that Colonel Wilson ground you.”
“You won’t have to, Sergeant,” the pilot said and walked off.
As we were walking back to Johns’s office, the Chief had mostly calmed down.
“I hate officers,” he grumbled, “especially pilots. They don’t care how much crap they put on us. And I’ll bet he really is covering up an over-g.”
“Yeah, Chief, but don’t you think your treatment of the pilot might get you into trouble?”
“They won’t do anything to me,” Johns replied. “I have too many stripes on my sleeves and my belly’s too big. I stopped worrying about that years ago.”
(To be continued…)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
A vignette of American life:
The neighbor’s boy went to his high school prom the other evening.
We say “the prom” where I live, other places call it “prom”.
It seems to be an American tradition.
What was slightly different about this couple, at least from prom couples in my day, was that the girl is bi-racial. Interracial couples at the prom are nothing new, but it used to be almost exclusively the male half being black and the female being white.
I looked at the prom photos in the paper, and the boy next door and his date, while different from my era, did not stand out at the dance, because there were quite a few couples with a white boy and a black girl, even dark-skinned black girls now date white boys.
Everybody looked happy, vibrant, and full of hope for the future, just the way youth should look.
If they and their parents are careful about where the kids go on to higher education at, most of these kids will enter adulthood just as free from hateful notions as they are right now.
God forbid they attend a cesspit like Oberlin.
When “they” in the MSM, and our politicians tell us where we are on race, they are holding a mirror up to their biased and obsessed selves.
The real world has moved on.
DYED IN THE WOOL
You now have to have a federally okay ID card to buy ammunition. That will take from 3-6 months to get. It costs money. Then you'll only be allowed to get so many shells and that's after a 10 day waiting period and background check. The liberals are now openly and bravely wanting to disarm the American people. The liberals are batshit crazy and they are running this country. It's so sad that the American people have to take this. But they are not going to take it very much longer. The conservative people in the United States are going to rise up at some point and they are going to wipe these crazy batshit liberals out. It's going to happen as sure as the sun rises.
These people cannot continue to destroy our way of life in this country but they can do it legally because they have forced their way into getting elected. But things are going to change. People are starting to rise up. Every day you see more and more people speaking up about how crazy these people are and I can't wait to see it happen. In fact I want to be part of it.
There are a lot of people in this country that have guns and they will never take guns away. Taking guns away will not stop random shooting. They will not stop somebody from being wacko, mad or on drugs to kill somebody. That's the way human beings are. It will never change. Never! And these idiots, and I mean idiots!, that think that gun control is going to stop or climate change is going to change the climate or global warming is going to change global warming is all bullshit. It's crazier than the professors that smell too much gas when they are over their Bunsen burners trying to figure out how to screw the American public again somehow. I can't tell you people out there how sick I am of hearing the news. These people running this country are so far out on a limb that they will commit suicide once they realize how stupid they are. That Cortez woman, the Omar woman, that rich guy, Adam Rich, the governor of New York and Chicago, mayors, governors of Washington and Oregon and California — these people are all dyed in the wool batshit crazy and all they are doing is trying to ruin the American way of life. Things are going to change to the rule of law. Not the law of liberals anymore, the law of the country, and you liberals better saddle up and ride for cover because the end is coming, believe me.
God bless Donald Trump, four more years
Jerry Philbrick, Comptche
PS. There's a high school in San Francisco that is demanding that the portrait of George Washington be taken off the wall. It was a unanimous decision. That's what our teachers are teaching our kids these days. Does that make you all happy out there? George Washington taken off the wall. The Liberals have gone clear over the bank as far as being rotten and anti-American and socialist and just overall rotten people. This deal was endorsed by Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, Kamala Harris, Dianne Feinstein and every other liberal around.
HE'S GOTTA GO
A divisive president—
I’m angry and heartbroken at the same time. Our man in the White House has torn apart everything most of us believe in. At his reelection rally, he yelled: “Our radical Democrat opponents are driven by hatred, prejudice and rage. They want to destroy you, and they want to destroy our country as we know it.”
Destroy you and our country? Really?
What is happening? Why must I wonder what kind of person my friends are who support him? Have they also lost their moral and ethical standards? Why would they support a narcissist who lies, belittles, doesn’t apologize and loves dictators. Yes, he wants to be one. Desperately. He is not a good human being.
Have 62 million people, including some of my friends, decided we should be the People’s Republic of America? If so, they don’t care about or love their children or grandchildren. Are they now the “hurray for me and to hell with you” faction?
Most everything the man at the top has done is against minorities, ecology, hardworking people or goodness. All for self-gratification. I love the United States and get sick every time he spouts his hate. It just shouldn’t be.
"DO YOU REMEMBER the happiest moment of your life?"
"One time back in 73', I went to see a show at the Village Vanguard by Rahsaan Roland Kirk. He was amazing. He could play three saxophones at one time. I went to his last set of the night, and I got there early and found him sitting at the bar. I went up to him and asked if I could join him on stage for a song, but he told me that he wouldn't have the time. 'If you change your mind,' I told him, 'I'll be sitting in the front row corner.' I told him exactly where I'd be because he was blind. Then right at the end of the show, he started waving toward my table. I got up there and started playing, and at one point he motioned for the whole band to stop, and I got to play a solo up on the stage. Everyone was clapping for me. I rode home on the subway that night feeling like a king. Feeling like I could play with anyone in the world."
HIPPOCLEIDES DOESN'T CARE.
The recording of last night's (2019-06-21) Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio show on KNYO-LP Fort Bragg and KMEC-LP Ukiah is available by one or two clicks, depending on whether you want to listen to it now or download it and keep it for later and, speaking of which, it's right here:
Besides all that, at http://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com you can find a fresh batch of dozens of links to not necessarily radio-useful but nonetheless worthwhile educational items I set aside for you while gathering the show together. Such as:
Here in the convenient robotic future of bluetooth-enabled toilet brushes and video doorbells that unlock and open the door for a delivery drone and electric screwdrivers and motorized spaghetti forks so you never have to turn your hand, not to mention Simone Giertz' toothbrushing and spoonfeeding robots that leave your hands entirely free to wiggle around and do as they please, you need to know how to fricking /reset a lightbulb to factory specs/ anymore. It only takes ten minutes, but that's if you’re a technician with the company and do it for a living, but if you're just the average light bulb consumer and you make a mistake on any of the steps you have to go back and start entirely over, so settle in. This reminds me of one time Tim sent me to an insurance/title company in a skyscraper in San Francisco to install a serial-printer-sharing device for an office full of late-1980s computers. It wasn’t just the printer box; each computer had to be set separately. The manual of steps to go through was as thick as a phone book. It took me all night. Bonus: the sun came up outside, and that was pretty. And I got to ride in an elevator. And one of the women who worked there, who I saw for like three minutes before she went home from work, when I showed up, was so luminously Asianly (or possibly Mexicanly) beautiful it was like being kicked in the chest just to look at her. "What." "Nothing. Sorry." That still happens to me even now. I'll be reading or working or doing something and Juanita will come in and I'll look up and /stop/, and she's like, "What?"
This video kind of explains some of the stories you hear about people who get arrested for doing this disgusting thing. Obviously it's different for them than for the people who catch and punish them and enjoy being disgusted by them. And really how is it even at all as cruel as shaving all an animal's hair off for sweaters or skin off for shoes and jackets or making sandwiches out of its leg or sausage out of its brains, because that's where sausage comes from: brains. Conversely, so-called head cheese is made from the intestines, and is not cheese at all. Electric cigarets are not cigarets, nor are they somehow magically good for you because they're electric and don't work by old-fashioned barely-controlled smoldering. Why, I read on the show last night an article about a boy whose electric cigaret exploded in his mouth, shredded his tongue and sprayed a section of his jaw and a bunch of his teeth out like popping popcorn. The guy in this video just likes animals a little more than normal people do, and so what. I like wristwatches and eyeglasses; is that gonna be a crime now too? And what about what /you/ like? It takes all kinds to make a world. Try not to judge, lest ye be judged. That's what Jesus said, and one time he beat the living crap out of a little tree because it wouldn't give him a fig out of season, but everybody has a bad day once in awhile, even mythical ancient superheroes whose dad is the boss of you.
And here's just the famous Last Visible Dog scene in /The Mouse and His Child/, a slow, languorous, uncategorizable animated kids' film that made a big impression on me, though I was technically a grownup when I first saw it (18? 19?). I drove with Julie to Grass Valley from her apartment in Colfax. It was August, very hot, nighttime, with all the windows rolled down in my first car, a green Chevy Nova built in 1971, though there was nothing about or in that car, besides the Radio Shack cassette deck, that had any innovation or part or method of operation that would baffle a mechanic of fifty years before that. You had to contort to reach around behind you to crank the back side window down, and sometimes you'd be shifting and the linkage would jam and you had to coast to safety, climb under the car with a big screwdriver and solve the puzzle, separate the transmission levers and push them where they belong, like unsticking a jammed typewriter that some mental case has vandalized in the thrift store, and I liked doing that. There was the dry cereal and potato-bug smell of yellow-brown grass hills and of course the smell of the car. Smoking engine oil, exhaust, dusty dashboard, floor plastic, Julie's clean white blouse. Other vehicles, even far away. We forget because we get used to things, and it isn't just that I'm old now and senses are all duller, but all cars and trucks gave off a tremendous stench in those days. They used more than twice as much gas as cars do now just to go at all, and all that half-burned fuel in the air was a /loud/ smell as well as making the air a gray-brown haze in big cities that didn't have special sea and/or surrounding landform wind luck. But this was the country, not the city. Beautiful theater they had in Grass Valley, too, the way theaters used to be, all one big hall, not a labyrinth of basically movie closets with fourteen seats in each one. Theaters smell as loud now as they used to, though with so few children around, compared to the old days when every public place was swarming with steaming contagious children, the smell is different; the same unreachable corner garbage, but less spoiled food and sweat and vomit and stickiness on surfaces, pongy-er cleaning chemicals, and mold from the air conditioning, and the reek of burning weed or weed vape oil everywhere now. Indoors public places smelled like piss then, now outdoors does too. Camps of homeless people with begging signs at every intersection and every driveway out of a parking lot, who all used to be the children in the theater and the young people in the cars going to a movie and feeling like the world is their oyster. And, yes, I know I told you this story before and it was slightly different the last few times, focusing on other elements and maybe going another direction, but you just wait, kid; it'll happen to you. How weird things will get for the way things are now to seem pleasant and familiar and nostalgic and comfortable. The main weird thing will be, you'll remember being young, because of course. Old people remember being young. But, you see, now, you don't remember being old. You think you can imagine it, but you can't. Stick around, though; life will put you through the lawnmower too, and there won’t be a goddamn thing you can do about it, so you might as well dance while you can, if you like to dance. I think that’s what "Hippocleides doesn't care" means, in the story Herodotus used to tell a few thousand years ago. You might look that up on the phone in your nose ring. https://tinyurl.com/LastVisibleDog
Marco McClean, email@example.com,
WE BROKE DOWN WHAT CLIMATE CHANGE WILL DO, REGION BY REGION (grist.org)
THE ENDEARING HUMAN SWARM
The image is provocative; its accurate portrayal of pretty much the entire western middle class (at least), a fertile field ready for an eye. A sowing. These folks have been certified as officially crazy. This state of affairs makes even the simplest conversation a major undertaking. But here they are trying their best.
They are, of course, mere shells of their former selves, as am I. That portly gent over there used to manage three Buick dealerships, and although he hated General Motors with a passion usually reserved for marriage partners, he cannot with confidence supply a name for his tablemate who has sat at his left for eight years.
This would, of course, be comic were it not so tragic. What survives of them are the faintest suggestions of what they used to be. He was a mayor once, and for many terms. That guy over there who hasn't moved an eyebrow since he shuffled in and sat down a few minutes ago used to drive a Bekins truck, moving America. That prune-shaped woman over there broke her opponent's forearm while wrestling for beers sixty years ago on the bed of a pickup truck backed up to the vast Wyoming prairie. How the mighty and the righteous have fallen, eh? Stay tuned. Whatever the ending here, this is a great shot. A great discovery. Eh? Stay tuned. You will own this story soon enough. Eh?
KNOW YOUR OLIGARCHS (#20)