- Calum Hunnicutt
- Derek Search
- Dingaling Prude
- Devil's Harvest
- Farm Report
- Team Trump
- Kneeland Nights
- Paul Krassner
- Balson Glories
- Worst Pres
- Elk BBQ
- Local List
- Rogers Case
- Camping Ordinance
- Yesterday's Catch
- Collusion Collapse
- Democratic Socialism
- Lincecum Accomplishments
- Gaylord's Homer
- Coyote Biz
- Manufactured Wars
- Aging Populace
- Ugly Sofa
- Speedway Events
- American Character
- Fritz Cat
- Planning Agenda
- Found Object
by Andrew Scully
I met two young men in the dark and lonely intersection at Little Lake Road and the Coast Highway on Wednesday night. I was on my way back home, walking up Little Lake, past the ballfield in Friendship Park. It was very dark, but I had a small flashlight and I was reassured by the familiar feeling of the baseball diamond in the Park.
As I came upon the crossing I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye, and owing to the hour and the dark, I responded with startled suspicion. But my mind was immediately eased when I realized that these two men had skateboards with them. They were skaters. So I figured I was ok.
I spoke with one of the young men, briefly. He had stepped forward to greet me. He was tall and dark, but it was his smile that I noticed, that disarmed any lingering fears I had about these strangers. His smile seemed luminous. These two were not a threat.
I asked where they were skating from, expecting the answer to be Albion or Elk, somewhere a fair bit away. Instead the answer came back, with a smile: “We’re just cutting in halfway down to the bridge.” This I understood to mean they were skating down Pacific Coast Highway to the bridge at Big River. I was impressed, and I told him that. We said goodnight and I continued on my way, past Highway 1, eastbound on Little Lake Road.
But for that chance 30 second encounter, I never would have met Calum Hunnicutt. And but for a chance 30 second encounter at the same intersection two days later, on Friday, I never would have known that Calum Hunnicutt had died. Had died in fact the night after I met him, at the same intersection.
Walking to the village on Friday at noon, a young woman was waiting for the light to change. She had an armload of sunflowers and was obviously heading to the median of the Highway where a shrine of flowers had been placed and was growing. I asked her what had happened. She told me that two young men had been skating near the intersection on Thursday night. One of the men was struck and killed by a car northbound on Highway One. The driver of that car did not stop to help. The driver fled the scene and left Calum on the side of the road.
I asked the young woman how she knew the fellow who had died and she told me he was a local man, only 21. His name was Calum and he had grown up in Mendo, graduated Mendo High. I asked if she had a photo and she produced pictures on her cellphone from a Facebook page. I was thunderstruck when I realized it was the same young man I had met at the intersection just the night before. There was no mistaking his photo. That smile.
It was not the manner of his death, but rather how Calum Hunnicutt lived that was dominant at the memorial service I attended on Sunday at Big River. Spread out over the entire beach east of the bridge on Sunday, it seemed more like an encampment that a gathering. The beach was crowded with his many friends and family members. Calum’s dad Adam spun some discs that Calum composed, and people danced a bit. But mostly they just spoke among themselves, clustered in groups of five or ten, in celebration for being with him and grief at his loss. Calum was a gifted musician and rapper, a poet and a skater. A beach kid from Mendocino-town.
People I spoke with remembered a gentle and authentic young man, an engaging and glowing spirit:
“I have never known anyone like Calum.”
“He was an original.”
Over and over, people spoke of what it was like to be “with Calum.” And I think I understand. I got a glimpse, however fleeting, on that dark Wednesday night.
Calum Hunnicutt, Requisat in Pace.
WE NEED YOUR HELP!
Mendocino County Sheriff's Office (MSCO) is seeking the public's assistance on a missing persons case.
MCSO was contacted by the Santa Rosa Police Department (SRPD) regarding Derek Weidner, a 25-year-old male who is possibly suicidal. Derek is from Webster, Texas and was last seen on Friday evening, 7/19/19, around 10:00 pm at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds RV Park, 1500 Ashton Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA. Derek was in the Sonoma area doing electrical line work for a private company.
Derek is 6'3" 290 lbs with brown eyes, black hair, heavy build with a beard.
On Saturday morning, 7/20/19, the missing person's vehicle, a 2015 grey GMC Denali pickup, Illinois license plate #1242790B, was located at milepost marker 6.70, South Highway 101 in Hopland, CA.
An officer from CHP - Ukiah located the vehicle early Saturday morning but at the time there had not been a missing persons report filed.
The MCSO and the CHP have been searching the area with a CHP helicopter as well as with CHP officers, Sheriff's Deputies and K-9s. A more extensive search with the Mendocino County Search and Rescue (SAR) team is scheduled for tomorrow in and around the area where the vehicle was located, using trailing dogs and ground teams.
We ask anyone with any information that could help find the location of Derek Weidner to contact the Santa Rosa Police Department at (707) 543-3600.
THROUGH THICK & THIN
One of my great weekly pleasures is reading the kick-ass AVA, renown for real content, deep skepticism and incomparable readability. It suits my temperament and need for real stories of thinking people of all persuasions.
Yesterday I was jazzed by the Off the Record recounting of Jerry Lee Lewis, '60s rock 'n roll icon, not quite up there with the giants — Chuck Berry, Fats Domino, Little Richard — but in a class by himself, fueled by non-stop never-say-die energy of 'Great Balls of Fire' & 'Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On — a stark contrast with the staid energy of the prettified grey flannel suit, aprons in the kitchen era of the '50s I came out of.
It took me back to the world-beating era of rock 'n roll with its infinite surprises and quirks like Little Richard, the first out queen, singing about his Ding-A-Ling with unapologetic gusto to the wholesome accompaniment of his audience, shifting verses between girls and boys about 'playing with their own ding-a-lings', assuring them, 'no one's gonna bother you'… And all that. They lifted a generation out of the drab cocoon of Ozzie and Harriet and Frank Sinatra who were doing it their way, not our way.
Well on my way into reverie, I'm jolted to the reality I am holding, which is falling apart with every page I turn with strips of excess paper hanging on the edges, breaking up the momentum of sheer reading enjoyment while I tend to unraveling loose ends. WTF!
No self-respecting publication should allow this sloppy interruption of the AVA experience the readers get from the gift they are holding in their hands. Ask your readers, is this a problem for them or just a child of the '60s making a mountain out of a molehill: 'She must be stoned so pay no attention. Readers know what they're getting for a dollar. This includes the distraction of torn pages flying in the breeze.'
I appeal to you, upgrade the physical quality to match the intellectual quality of the paper, raise the price accordingly and give us back the undistracted event of pleasure and knowledge we've come to expect from the smashing AVA.
MS NOTES: For some reason — I will assert old age — I mistakenly didn’t pick up the above letter for last week’s collection for the print edition, so we are printing it this week, along with the Ms. Trippet’s follow-up complaint alleging censorship and poor paper quality. I apologize for the oversight.
It is very disappointing that you, as editor, remain self-satisfied censor of sexual expression, especially since it is merely a little risque ditty of one of the great rock n roll singers of the times. Who are you to censor him? Little Richard sang it with the hearty affirmation of his audience who presumably had people who masterbated from time to time amongst them.
Let it never be said you don't censor, and all to save face for the 'family paper'. If I were in your position, there's nothing you could say that I would ever censor merely because it made me squirm, yet that is what you have done to me. Silence instead of ridicule. Prudes by their nature have a chickenshit streak that is playing out here.
You didn't even have the courtesy to quote from the complaint in my letter regarding the poor quality of the paper you choose for the AVA. Are you afraid to ask your readers, for fear they would agree? Why not simply print my suggestion about the paper? You could say, you're right, we fixed it…or you're wrong, it's a petty complaint or we'd have to raise the price from $1 to be able to afford it.
But not nothing.
ED NOTE #2: Do you really think that we would censor your letter because of the phrase “my dingaling”? Jeez, Pebs!
LIFE ON A WORKING BOONVILLE FARM
Petit Teton Monthly Farm Report - June 2019
Wow, what a season this is turning out to be - and we're not talking politics. Lots of rain through May is unusual for the valley, at least in our 15 years here. Cool to moderate temps through June made for ideal weather for everything to put on growth. We thought the asparagus would love it but not so; we had half the crop of last year and can only guess that it was a lack of heat. June stayed in the 70-80 range and to the present has remained in the 80's. The fruit sets on many of our now doubled in size trees are amazing. All the plums…Thundercloud, Santa Rosa and Green Gage…were loaded. The Kadota fig, a huge jungle of a tree, is so full that we don't mind sharing with the orioles who practically live in it. And that's only one tree and the first set.
The Brunswick is also full but ripens a bit later. The Black Mission, never happy enough with our weather to fruit much, is giving us gorgeous long fruits now and has plenty of sets for the next flush. The blackberry "maze", a vast and daunting labyrinth of Himalayan vines pruned and caged by our welding wizard, Cameron, against any bird invasion is set to bring in a record harvest as is the thornless variety growing on a long fence near the kitchen.
The kitchen has been jammin', literally! The Thundercloud and Santa Rosa plums have been processed to jams and syrups. The Green Gage is coming in waves. Kadota figs have been transformed into jams, chutneys, conserves and dried fruits and there's still more to pick. White peaches and apricots have been harvested and the fruit is ready to process. Meanwhile tomatoes are reddening, cucumbers and okra are coming in for pickling, garlic is drying and being pickled, rhubarb and strawberries are in constant need of picking, mulberries and elderberries are nearly done, golden berries are coming on, the shallots are drying down, some early apples are falling, all the pears are swelling and there are cabbages in need of krauting.
There is usually a progression to the harvests, but this year a lot is coming in at once. We're running fast to keep up which is probably a good thing - it does keep us from dwelling on the disasters going on in this beleaguered world and the dismay we are feeling.
Take care and keep up the good fight.
Nikki Auschnitt and Steve Krieg, Yorkville
NIGHT LIGHT OF THE NORTH COAST: Kneeland, One Year Later
by David Wilson
Have you ever really thought about the difference between night and day? An interesting difference between day and night is that from one year to the next there are differences between night skies, but no differences between daytime skies. It may be a little odd-sounding if you haven’t thought of it, but it’s not strange when you do.
Daytime is about the sun. It comes up over there, turns night to day, and then goes down over there. We all know this. The light on any given date is exactly the same year after year, with only atmospheric differences causing any variation. This is because after one year the Earth is in the same position in its orbit around the sun as it was the previous year, and it will be the next year and so on. Any changes in that schedule are so gradual that they could take millennia to notice. The Moon may come and go from the daytime sky, but it has no effect on the quality of light when it shares the sky with the sun.
But the night! Nothing dominates the night like the sun dominates the day. The quality of light varies dramatically from night to night. It can be completely different on the same date from one year to the next. The Moon’s light is the greatest influence, but it will appear for only half of the month. When it is out its light is always changing as it waxes or wanes from one night to the next, and it rises and sets most of an hour later each night.
Farther out from the Moon, the planets travel in their own paths around the sun. The word “planet” comes from a Greek word for “wanderer,” for unlike the stars planets gradually change their positions and appear in different parts of the sky from one year to the next. The planets visible one night may not be in the sky at all one year later. Far beyond the planets is the one annual constant in the night sky: the field of stars. But though the stars are the same annually, they do change position ever so slightly from night to night.
Our galaxy, the Milky Way, is shaped similarly to a flattened pinwheel, with our solar system out on one of its arms. The Milky Way is named for the path of milky starlight we see best in the night skies of the summer months; it resembles a milky way through the star fields. During the summer months Earth’s night side faces toward the center of this great collection of stars, nebulae and whatnot that is our galaxy, and as we look toward this densest portion we are staring at our galaxy’s core. You can recognize the core as the brightest, most detailed portion of the Milky Way overhead in the nights of summer and fall.
The photographs I’m sharing here were photographed exactly one year apart on July 18, 2018 and July 18, 2019 on the same stretch of road outside of Kneeland, Humboldt County. They serve well to illustrate some of the differences in the night sky one can see from one year to the next.
On July 18, 2018, the moon was a waxing crescent at 33.8% full, casting its light onto the landscape from out of view to the right. It would set in the west over an hour after the photograph was taken. A year later on July 18, 2019, the moon was at 98% and waning, having been full only two days before. It had just risen above the horizon in the southeast. Its light, colored by a faint amber haze, barely skimmed across the land. In 2018, Saturn appeared to be among the stars of the galactic core, with Mars off to the left of it. In 2019, Mars is gone entirely. Saturn has moved to the left of the Milky Way, and Jupiter has taken position to the right of it. Only the stars are in the same relative positions in both photographs.
As the world turns beneath the Kneeland Road, a moon recently full rises in the southeast to chase the Milky Way across the night sky. Humboldt County, California. July 18, 2019.
A snapshot of the night from July 18, 2019 shows the planets Saturn and Jupiter guiding the Milky Way across the sky. The moon, waning but still 98% full, had just risen in the southeast.
A year earlier the night contained a different set of local celestial objects: Jupiter was absent, and instead Mars and Saturn accompanied the Milky Way across the sky. The moon was in a waxing crescent phase at 33.8% full. It had an hour more before it set out of view to the right. July 18, 2018.
(To keep abreast of David Wilson’s most current photography or peer into its past, visit or contact him at his website mindscapefx.com or follow him on Instagram at @david_wilson_mfx)
PAUL KRASSNER, AMERICAN SATIRIST
by Jonah Raskin
“He’s gone. Feel free to spread the word,” Michael Simmons said in an email that went out to a few dozen or so of the usual suspects, including Wavy Gravy, Judy Gumbo, Larry (Ratzo) Sloman, Jim Fouratt, Rex Weiner, Aron Kay, Kate Coleman, Jeffrey St. Clair, and Barbara Garson, some of whom had been Yippies, Zippies and their fellow travelers.
“He” who was now gone at the age of 87, was Paul Krassner, who took up where Lenny Bruce left off, edited The Realist, reinvigorated satire, defended free speech at every opportunity and who lived at the end of his life in Desert Hot Springs, California in part because of the climate and also because he could afford to live there.
Before long there will be hefty biographies of Paul that describe his birth and his childhood in Brooklyn, his days and nights in Chicago during the infamous Conspiracy Trial, his provocative piece about LBJ and the Kennedy Assassination, and his performances as a standup comedian who seemed to find less and less to laugh about, and more and more to fret about in a world gone awry. The atomic bomb and nuclear paranoia was something Krassner could laugh about; not so Putin, Trump, the plutocrats and the kleptocrats of the twenty-first century.
Before the formal obituaries that are sure to show up in all the major U.S. newspapers, and before the pundits weigh-in on the significance of Krassner, it might make sense to say here that Paul was irascible and cantankerous, true to his core beliefs and that there were zero sacred cows in his universe, at least at the beginning of his career.
I met him in 1970. Soon afterward, he published in The Realist a piece I wrote about Eldridge Cleaver, Timothy Leary and their wives, but not before he’d turned it from something tame into something irreverent.
Over the years, I saw him in New York and in San Francisco. From 2015 to 2018, I interviewed Paul several times and published most of our conversations in print and online. In 2018, I collected all of them in a booklet titled Paul Krassner Speaks: From Lenny Bruce and Obama to Hebdo.
Here are a few of the things he had to say:
“Satire has a truth embedded in the laughter and it can serve to wake people up from their cultural brainwashing.”
“Free speech demands a sense of responsibility.”
“I think every child is born with innocent irreverence, but it’s cancelled by the osmosis of cultural repression.”
“What I’d like to forget and can’t is that there are so many prisoners serving time, as Lenny Bruce said, ‘for smoking flowers.’”
“My slogan for The Realist used to be ‘Irreverence is our only sacred cow,’ but I’ve had second thoughts. Irreverence has become an industry and can become irreverence for its own sake. Mean-spirited stereotypes in the guise of satire.”
(Jonah Raskin is the author of For The Hell of It: The Life and Times of Abbie Hoffman and American Scream: Allen Ginsberg’s ‘Howl’ and the Making of the Beat Generation.)
PAUL KRASSNER DEAD AT 87. The tabloid he founded in the 1950s, The Realist, violated every taboo. If you discovered Mad in your early teens, at 17 you were mad for The Realist.
Krassner was with the Yippie contingent at the Democratic National Convention in '68, and wrote a brief dispatch for the Ramparts Wallposter. Last time I saw him was at the 2012 NORML conference in LA, which I wrote up for O'Shaughnessy's:
Paul Krassner did a stand-up routine (sitting down) on the “Marijuana and the Senior Citizen” panel. Krassner hit the scene in the late 1950s with The Realist, a biting, bawdy satirical rag that was like Lenny Bruce on newsprint. To the NORML audience Krassner revealed, “I owe my longevity to never taking any legal drugs. Although a few months ago I did take an aspirin. I didn’t have a headache or anything. I was at a party, they were just passing them around. It was just submission to peer pressure.”
Krassner’s patter is a syncopated mix of straight jabs (facts) and looping left hooks (jokes). He noted that the Partnership for a Drug-Free America was funded by the alcohol, tobacco and prescription-drug industries. “Ambien is supposed to put you to sleep but you can wake up and drive to the 7-11 and buy a Hershey bar and you don’t even remember… Provacol is supposed to make you feel not depressed but one of the side-effects is suicidal tendencies. That’s also one of the side effects of Ambien. So you could commit suicide without knowing it so you wouldn’t know to leave a note.”
The NORML leaders had given their conference a bold name: “The Final Days of Prohibition.” Grampa Paul said slyly, “These are the last days of prohibition. But we don’t know how long the final days will last.”
At one point he was reaching for a thought and turned to his notes. “I made a few notes,” he said, “because my memory is okay but my vocabulary is escaping.” I knew just what he meant.
“Drones have killed 175 children in Pakistan. Obama says he’s not perfect and he’s right.
“When I took LSD I told my mother and she was very worried. She said it could lead to marijuana. And my mother was right.
“People are afraid of it. When High Times ran a questionnaire, one question was ‘Is it possible to smoke too much pot?’ And a reader replied ‘I don’t understand the question.’
“Recreational marijuana serves as an enhancer. If you’re going to have a great dinner and you get stoned before it, it enhances the taste. If you go to a movie, it enhances the film experience. If you’re gonna have sex, it enhances the sensuality of it. Listening to music is very much enhanced by getting stoned. And I’ve been getting stoned before I roll a joint in order to enhance that experience.
“As long as any government can decide arbitrarily which drugs are illegal, then anyone in prison for a drug offense is a political prisoner.”
Krassner credited the writer/organizer Harvey Wasserman with the observation that “the prohibition of marijuana is the cornerstone of the police state.”
After riffing about some new plant strains (“Michael Phelps,” “OG Charlie Sheen”), the OctoGenarian realist expressed the hope that Obama would stage “an October surprise and remove marijuana from Schedule One. In honor of that fantasy we would have another strain of medical marijuana called ‘October Surprise.’”
Incidentally, the doctors in the Society of Cannabis Clinicians all report that the average age of their patients keeps rising. “I’m seeing a surprising number of patients in their seventies and eighties lately,” says Jeffrey Hergenrather, MD, of Sebastopol.
ENTERING BOONVILLE from the north, visitors are welcomed by the splendid sight of Rod Balson's annual morning glory extravaganza, the likes of which can't be found even in the more temperate areas of the Mendocino Coast where smaller skeins of morning glories are a much more common sight than they are in the summer heat of Anderson Valley. "I'm surprised at how many people stop by when they see me out watering them," Rod says, a task to which he devotes two hours daily and which enhances our entire town.
CONGRESSWOMAN OMAR, chatting with Rachel Maddow the other day, said Trump "is the worst president we've ever had." Nope. By any objective standard, Andrew Johnson was a lot worse, especially for black people. Succeeding the assassinated Lincoln, Johnson not only encouraged violence against freed slaves, he severely retarded the post-war reconciliation of the South with the North. Woodrow Wilson was another unapologetic race man occupying the presidency. His favorite movie was ‘Birth of a Nation,’ and he liked it so much he showed it many times in the White House. Grant, succeeding Johnson as president, cracked down on the Klan and at least tried to ensure public safety in the Reconstruction years, but it wasn't until Truman desegregated the military in '48, and then the schools were in theory desegregated under Eisenhower in '54 that true Reconstruction began. The wonderful world of sports was also slowly and grudgingly integrated in '47-'48. The military and sports were, you could say, the primary liberalizing racial institutions, but it wasn't until the late 1960s that millions of genuinely affectionate and loyal cross-race relationships became commonplace. The huge push-back Orange Man is getting from his efforts to stir the race fires would not have happened in 1960.
A TRUE SON OR DAUGHTER OF MENDOCINO COUNTY MUST HAVE:
- Driven or biked over Fish Rock Road to Gualala. And back.
- Drank from the Indian spring on Manchester Road, kept on west and visited the round house on the Manchester rez.
- Hiked the Lost Coast from the Usal end.
- Seen the shell mounds at Black Sands Beach.
- Driven the Mina Road to Alderpoint, then northeast to Weaverville, thinking about George White, "The King of Round Valley."
- Read "Genocide and Vendetta."
- Hiked in to the hot springs at Point Arena and the hot springs at the headwaters of the Garcia.
- Visited the Held-Poage Library at least once.
- Hiked Navarro Ridge Road from the Flynn Creek end or driven it from the ocean end.
- Know where the old ballpark was in Fort Bragg. And Ukiah.
- Walked from MacKerricher to Ten Mile on what's left of the old Haul Road.
- Ridden the Skunk.
- Eaten an authentic old time donut from the Redwood Drive-In and eaten a Jenny Burger in Fort Bragg.
- Driven through the Drive-thru redwood in Leggett and on out west to Rockport.
- Harvested chestnuts at the Zeni Ranch.
- Hiked and camped from Willits to Fort Bragg on Sherwood Road.
- Enjoyed a drink at Bobby Beacon's world famous Beacon Light (which I haven't done yet myself but fully intend to).
- Hopped the fence for close look at the old Air Force base at Point Arena.
- Hunted wild pig. Trespassed to a great abalone spot.
- Driven from Laytonville to Westport on the Branscomb Road, and from Covelo to Willows over the Mendocino Pass.
- Know where Eden Valley is.
- Driven the length of the Ukiah-Comptche Road.
- Visited at least once the Potter Valley Project for a look at America’s most precarious river diversion.
HOWARD HERSHIPS of San Francisco on the Kenny Rogers case. Rogers' is the only man we know of convicted on zero hard evidence against him: Herships writes: “I have been piecing the Kenny Rogers case together, trying to help him out with his case against the County and the state of California. It's really bizarre. Most people don't understand that criminal defense attorneys have a duty to their clients first. The client should come first before himself. In this case Mr. Masuda violated that trust and walked away with all Kenny Rogers’ money, $128,000 in cash and he said, ‘I'm keeping the money, goodbye.’ You can't do that. There is a US Supreme Court decision on that point which came down in 2016. The state doesn't want to do anything because they don't want to admit to liability. So now Kenny Rogers is going to the US Supreme Court on a ‘petition of certiorari’ which is basically a Latin term which means to search the record and resolve certain issues. That's the problem they have. We are doing this basically on a shoestring. The cost factor is way out there. I'm trying to help but I need some assistance. I am getting some press coverage because it will be filed next week. The AP is covering it and a US Supreme Court blog is covering it."
ED NOTE: I've read the entire Rogers oeuvre, including the transcripts referred to here, and I think (1) there was no solid evidence whatsoever that Rogers conspired to shoot up Simon's front door in Westport twenty years ago. I think the gunman, a professional criminal, was simply repaying Rogers’ many kindnesses to him. He thought he was doing Rogers a favor. The transcripts, however, even by Mendo standards, are shocking. They reveal the late Judge Ron Brown blandly presided over a series of appointed lawyers who disappeared for no real reason at all other than Brown let them disappear, stripping Rogers of many thousands of dollars of his own money, and leaving him unable to defend himself. The case is on appeal and, judging from the transcripts, Rogers should win, but only after spending the past two decades in prison. Coast Prosecutor Tim Stoen told court observers during the trial that when he called the Peacock brothers out of their prison cells to testify he knew they had no credibility and could probably be made to look like liars on the stand by both sides of the case, but it didn’t matter because Stoen simply wanted the jury to see that Rogers was connected to these guys, one of whom had already been convicted of shooting up Simon’s front door. It worked. The jury came back with guilty verdicts for attempted murder for hire. But if Ron Brown had accepted that original plea bargain Rogers would be a free man today. The Rogers matter is one of the all-time Mendo miscarriages of justice, right up there with the Tai Abreu case and in the Rogers case, as was clear at the time, motivated to some extent by Rogers serving at the time as the high profile chairman of the Mendo County Republican Party. The fuzzy-warms were out to get him. And they did.
FROM THE UKIAH DAILY JOURNAL:
UKIAH OFFICIALS DELAY CAMPING ORDINANCE VOTE
The Ukiah City Council this week postponed a vote on an updated version of the city’s ordinance prohibiting camping, after further revisions were suggested.
At the July 17 meeting, Assistant City Attorney Darcy Vaughn told the City Council that a decision by the federal Ninth District Court of Appeals called Martin v. the City of Boise had effectively invalidated “pretty much any anti-camping ordinance” currently in effect in several western states, including California.
And while the “state of homelessness” itself couldn’t be criminalized, Vaughn said that the court “did specifically state that it did not intend to prohibit any kind of government regulation of camping … that even where shelter is unavailable, an ordinance prohibiting sitting, lying down or sleeping outside at particular times or in particular locations might well be Constitutional.”
Vaughn said that the city’s updated camping ordinance would prohibit “setting up permanent encampments, prohibit camping in the floodway (meaning creekbeds and other waterways) or on sidewalks, and it prohibits camping in public between the hours of 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.”
City Manager Sage Sangiacomo also noted that the ordinance prohibited a sleeping area any larger than sixty-four-square-feet per person, “to prevent large-scale encampments from forming.”
When addressing the City Council, 2nd District Mendocino County Supervisor John McCowen said it was good for the city to have an ordinance that is “legally enforceable and responsive to the problems that you’re looking at,” but that he did suggest amending the definition of “camping” so it is not something that is only done overnight.
“Because by that definition, even someone in a creekbed (who is obviously camping) would not be in violation until they had been there overnight,” said McCowen, suggesting that the word “overnight” be deleted from the ordinance’s definition of camping, “because then you would have something that would be readily enforceable against people that are sleeping in creekbeds, which again is the most inappropriate areas (for people to be camping).”
In response to the concern that the updated ordinance would effectively ban sleeping in public, Vaughn said the ordinance was not banning sleeping, but the act of camping.
When Vice-Mayor Doug Crane asked if Vaughn and City Attorney David Rapport needed more time to fine-tune the ordinance, Rapport said he did prefer to not “make changes on the spot.” Crane then suggested that consideration of the ordinance be continued until the next meeting.
When asked what other cities or counties had updated their camping ordinances, Vaughn said she “couldn’t find one that had been adopted yet,” but that the city of Eureka has continued to clean up camps, “stating that nobody has the right to litter in public, destroy property, trespass, create a public health or safety hazard, obstruct the flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic, or interfere with the rights of others to use public areas.”
“Our approach is not to prevent someone from sleeping, and we don’t believe this (ordinance) does that,” said Sangiacomo. “But we will certainly take a look at the definition … and come back at the next meeting with additional discussion and consideration for the council.”
Sangiacomo also pointed out that the revised ordinance was “less restrictive than the current one.”
The City Council then voted to continue consideration of the ordinance until the next council meeting Aug. 7.
(Courtesy, the Ukiah Daily Journal)
CATCH OF THE DAY, JULY 22, 2019
ROSA BALEON-MACIAS, Ukiah. Appropriate of another’s property without trying to return it.
TAYLOR BEAN, Gualala. DUI.
MARTIN BRIGGS, Willits. Burglary.
CRYSTAL BUCHER, Fort Bragg. Domestic abuse.
JOSE CORNEJO, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
DARREN GONZALES, Gualala. DUI.
GARRIE HOAGLIN, Ukiah. Parole violation. (Frequent flyer.)
RODNEY HUBBARD, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
BILLY NELSON, Vacaville/Willits. DUI, taking vehicle without owner’s consent, vehicle theft, vandalism, resisting, failure to appear, probation revocation.
MARTIN PANIAGUA-MORENO, Ukiah. DUI, domestic battery.
COURTNEY SANCHEZ, Ukiah. Domestic battery, false imprisonment.
WHAT GOES AROUND
by James Kunstler
Just how dead is the RussiaGate story — and how brain-dead are the House Democratic Committee chairmen, Nadler (Judiciary Committee) and Schiff (Intelligence Committee) to haul RussiaGate’s front-man, Robert Mueller back into the spotlight where the next thing to roll over and die will be Mr. Mueller’s evanescent reputation? The entrapment operation that was the Special Counsel’s covert mission has turned out to be Mr. Mueller own personal booby-trap, prompting the question: is it possible that he’s just not very bright?
Though Mr. Mueller’s final report asserted that the Russian government interfered in “a sweeping and systemic fashion” to influence the 2016 election, the 450-page great tome contains zero evidence to support that claim, and the discrepancy was actually noticed by federal judge Dabney Friedrich who is presiding over the case against the alleged Russian Facebook trolls that was one of the two tent-poles in the RussiaGate fantasy. The case is now blowing up in Robert Mueller’s face.
In early 2018, Mr. Mueller sold a DC grand jury on producing indictments against a Russian outfit called the Internet Research Agency and its parent company Concord Management, owned by Russian oligarch Yevgeny Prigozhin for the so-called election meddling. The indictment was celebrated as a huge coup at the time by the likes of CNN and The New York Times, styled as a silver bullet in the heart of the Trump presidency. But the indicted parties were all in Russia, and could not be extradited, and there was zero expectation that any actual trial would ever take place — leaving Mueller & Co. off-the-hook for proving their allegations.
To the great surprise of Mr. Mueller and his “team,” Mr. Prigozhin hired some American lawyers to defend his company in court. Smooth move. It automatically triggered the discovery process, by which the accused is entitled to see the evidence that prosecutors hold. It turned out that Mr. Mueller’s team had no evidence that the Russian government was involved with the Facebook pranks. This annoyed Judge Friedrich, who ordered Mr. Mueller and his lawyers to desist making public statements about Concord and IRA’s alleged “sweeping and systemic” collusion with Russia, and threatened legal sanctions if they did.
Judge Friedrich’s rulings were unsealed in early July, after Messers Nadler and Schiff had already scheduled Mr. Mueller’s testimony before their committees. And now they’re stuck with him. The only purpose of his appearance was to repeat and reinforce the narrative that the Russian government interfered in the election, which he is now forbidden to do, at least in connection to the Concord and IRA’s activities. But the other tentpole of the two-year-plus inquisition has also collapsed: the allegation that Russian intel hacked the DNC servers. It’s now a matter of public record that the DNC servers were never examined by federal officials. They were purportedly scrutinized by a DNC contractor called CrowdStrike, co-founded by Russian Dimitri Alperovitch, an adversary of Vladimir Putin, active in US-based anti-Putin lobbying and PR. CrowdStrike’s “draft” report on their review of the server was laughably incomplete, and the Mueller team’s lawyers took no steps to validate it.
It would be interesting to hear Robert Mueller’s explanation for how come US computer forensic experts were never dispatched to take possession of the DNC servers. Surely a ranking member on either House committee would have to ask him that, along with many other embarrassing questions about the stupendously sloppy and disingenuous work of the Special Counsel’s team. It was only one glaring omission among many.
The whole affair now takes on tragic contours of Shakespearean dimensions. The Attorney General, Mr. Barr, is said to be an “old friend” of Mr. Mueller. They clashed pretty publicly after the release of Mr. Mueller’s long-awaited final report. Mr. Barr must at least be dismayed by the bad faith and deliberate deceit in his old friend’s final report, and he really has to do something about it. The entire Mueller episode smacks of prosecutorial misconduct. In retrospect, it can only be explained as a desperate act undertaken by foolishly overconfident political activists. If Mr. Mueller thought he was being enlisted to play an historically heroic role to help get rid of an elected president detested by the Establishment, then he made the blunder of a lifetime. It was not the first blunder of his long career, but it was the final and fatal one. It is not out of the question that Mr. Mueller himself may eventually be the one indicted and convicted of real crimes against the people of the United States.
(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)
THE WAY TO DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISM?
Is there a democratic road to socialism? And if so, what does it mean for socialists today?
We all need a break. Let me offer some relief from the tortured comments and daily ranting from the current occupant of the White House with a little game I call “Is he qualified?” It goes this way. I’ll list the stats, and you decide if he is qualified for the Baseball Hall of Fame:
Three World Series championships.
Two Cy Young awards.
Two Sporting News Pitcher of the Year awards.
Three-time NL strikeout leader.
Four All-Star games.
One MLB Starter of the Year award.
Team record for games with 10 or more strikeouts.
Three-time Player of the Week.
And just for the heck of it, his combined multiple no-hitters thrown, multiple Cy Young Awards won, multiple All-Star selections and multiple World Series championship titles are only matched by Sandy Koufax.
If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am talking about the Freak, Tim Lincecum. I can’t think of another player I have seen, in a span of more than six decades of watching baseball, who has given me more pleasure and who has had better numbers. I never hear his name mentioned, but he certainly deserves consideration. Thanks for all the good times, Timmy.
HISTORY IS ALWAYS BETTER with an accompanying baseball anecdote.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
…the huge growth of people that have mysteriously appeared there [at the Southern border].
What mystery? It’s clear why those folks are there. They believe the door is going to be slammed shut by OrangeMan. Trump is the best advertisement the world has ever seen for Coyotes selling the American dream to travel minded Central Americans.
“Quick, get in before the huge new wall (paid for by Mexico) and more troops arrive at the border! Limited time special offer! – The whole family gets in for the price of one! Hurry, don’t be left behind!”
- Trump is the anti-illegal immigrant president
- He is/was going to build a great, beautiful wall
- Mexico is/was going to pay for it
A. More illegals are coming to and into the USA now than at any time since the moonwalk, 50 years ago
Ironic that the guy YOU, the electorate, selected to save you from the brown hordes, is the one responsible for causing them to flock to and into the USA. Poetic justice, if ever there was any.
My suggestion: Do not put your faith in political parties (D or R), personalities (Trump or Warren/Sanders), ideologies (liberal or conservative) religions/philosophies (Christian or Atheist), theories (conspiracy or scientific), as the whole thing is a hopeless, hot mess and MANY/MOST are trying to screw you!
Live a comfortable, decent and calm life and leave all the other BS BEHIND, which is not easily done, as you are ON YOUR OWN in this world
What is it all going to matter in 100 years anyway? You cannot influence the course of events that will unfold. We are twigs riding on a mighty river, we are piloting nothing.
NOT EVERYONE believes in the coming AI jobocalypse, but everybody who has studied the question is sure that the biggest growth area in employment in the developed world is going to be care, especially care of the elderly. It's a simple question of arithmetic: our populations are growing older and iller at unprecedented demographic speed. (An individual can't grow older at increased speed, but a population can, if not enough children are born and the old are living longer.) For the first time in human history, there are more people over the age of 65 than under the age of five. Someone is going to have to look after them/us as we age. At the moment, a great deal of this care work is done for free. Even when it isn't, it is very badly paid. Unwaged and underpaid work can be ameliorated by UBI, the universal basic income, which is a direct cash sum to unpaid workers, underpaid women and unremunerated carers.
— John Lanchester
THE COUNTYWIDE UGLY SOFA CONTEST
by Alyson Bailey
Willits Furniture Center, Inc. has been established in Willits for over 50 years, which is a long time to keep thinking of new ways to make the interaction between business and community fresh. They’re not short on events, but when Mike and Margie Scott suggested an Ugly Sofa Contest, it was something not only new to the business but new to Mendocino County.
The UGLY Sofa contest cannot work without community participation. “The sofa submissions, votes, and the Reveal Party will all involve the public,” said Scott. “This contest is for everyone in Mendocino, Not just inland. The coast is strongly encouraged to participate.” What they have come up with is truly unique and puts a lot of trust in the hands of the community.
To play, submit a photo to the Willits Furniture Center Facebook messenger of an ugly sofa belonging to someone you know, have contact information for, and who wants to be nominated all by Friday, July 26th, midnight.
Lack of contact information for both the nomination and the person who submitted the photo will disqualify both.
Vote on the Willits Furniture Center Facebook page Friday, Aug. 2nd, 19th and 16th on the sofas you think are ugly.
All submissions and votes are gifted with a 10% discount on full-price items at Willits Furniture Center. They will be sent to your Facebook messenger and must be used before Sep. 1, 2019
Saturday, August 17th you attend the Reveal Party and find out who of the final three will win the grand prize: all events are open to the public.
Third Prize: The person who made the nomination gets 20% off of any full-price item/s in the store, The Sofa Owner receives $200 off of a sofa or sofa set (full-price), and 20% off of any full-price item/s in the store
Second Prize: The submitter receives 30% off of any full-price item/s in the store, while the sofa owner wins $300 off of a sofa or sofa set (full-price), and 30% off of any full-price item/s in the store*
The Grand Prize for the submission is 40% off of any full-price item/s in the store, while the sofa owner gets $900 toward the purchase of any full-price sofa or sofa set, and 50% off any additional full-price items* - *Excluded Tempur-Pedic
Again, the prizes for the final three will be announced and gifted at the Reveal Party located at Willits Furniture Center at 775 Central Ave, Saturday, Aug. 17th. There will be refreshments, music, and items for sale as low as 60% off so that all attendees can get into the winning spirit.
Get your sofa submissions in as soon as possible. The deadline for submissions is Friday, July 26th by midnight. If you have any questions, you can go to Willits Furniture Center’s Facebook page. The rules and details are pasted there. You can also contact Alyson Bailey at Edify on Facebook or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for participating!
REDWOOD EMPIRE FAIR READY FOR SPEEDWAY EVENTS
Get ready to see daring motorized action at this years’ Redwood Empire Fair, where drivers are “Goin’ Hog Wild,” in sync with this year’s theme.
This year’s fair takes place from August 1st to August 4th. The Speedway events are free for fair attendees - part of the Fair’s commitment to helping create affordable, memorable and fun experiences for the whole family.
The Speedway events start off with a bang on at Thursday evening with motorcycles, side-by-sides and quads screaming around the quarter-mile track. Friday nights’ Mudd Bogg racing brings one of the country’s most popular styles of off-road racing to the Ukiah Speedway. If you’ve never seen Truck and Tractor Pulls, take a break from the Tilt-A-Whirl on Saturday night and prepare for some loud, raucous, high-octane excitement. Sunday’s final lineup includes Boat Races, Jalopies and Junior Mudd Boggs featuring youth 12 to 17 years of age. The Junior event was such a success last year that Speedway organizers are bringing back the kids for a second time.
Thursday and Friday’s events begin at 6:30, and Saturday and Sunday’s events start at 6:00. For more information, visit the Fair’s Facebook Page, the Redwood Empire Fair website http://www.redwoodempirefair.com/august-fair/ or phone (707) 462-3884.
Photo Credit: Chris Pugh
IT IS NIXON HIMSELF who represents that dark, venal and incurably violent side of the American character that almost every country in the world has learned to fear and despise. Our Barbie-doll president, with his Barbie-doll wife and his boxful of Barbie-doll children is also America's answer to the monstrous Mr. Hyde. He speaks for the Werewolf in us; the bully, the predatory shyster who turns into something unspeakable, full of claws and bleeding string-warts on nights when the moon comes too close… — Hunter Thompson
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE WEEK
There’s many abiding mysteries of life, some trivial, others of great import. Such as how did the foreign affairs community (aka The Blob) manage to accrete so many intellectually sub-standard, group-thinking non-thinkers and, given the foregoing, how is it that so many of these group-thinking-non-thinkers reach positions of influence? Given their inability to do anything but regurgitate shop-worn templates that don’t work anymore (if they ever did) why do they even get the time of day never mind get to occupy the Everests of academe and government? Is it a lack of will on their part to re-examine and re-think or is it a lack of ability? In the end, does it matter? The fact that they’ve been stinking up universities and government offices for so long is a discredit to the rest of us that should’ve rousted out these incompetents and cranks a long, long time ago. There’s a lot of propositions that might sound common sensical and practical on their face that would mark you by the Blob as “unserious” were you to mouth them. The Iran nuclear deal is making the news a lot nowadays. Maybe Trump is right in that it needs a re-think but maybe it needs a re-think in ways he’s not thinking about. First, look at the countries at the negotiating table in the original deal: the US, the UK, Russia, France, China, Germany and the EU. But -ahem – what about the countries a nuclear armed Iran would most affect? Like those countries in its vicinity, like Turkey, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Israel … you get the drill. Far be it from me to suggest that maybe these close neighbors have the greatest stake and should have been the chief negotiators and not the US, the UK etc. See, THAT would mark you as “unserious.” Should NATO be disbanded? To raise the question is “unserious”. But it’s an abiding mystery as to why incompetent, bone-heads who created so much calamity are the shot-callers. Why can’t we get rid of them, get some fresh thinkers, people with views that accord with reality?
THURSDAY, AUGUST 1, 2019 PLANNING COMMISSION AGENDA