MCT: Wednesday, March 25, 2020

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A COLD AND UNSTABLE AIR MASS will result in scattered rain and mountain snow showers through this evening before dry weather returns Thursday. Precipitation may return to the area by this weekend, primarily to the north of Cape Mendocino. (NWS)

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SENATE AGREES ON $2 TRILLION STIMULUS/RESCUE PACKAGE

McConnell/Schumer say it “will keep big corporations accountable.”

Salaries for workers to be backfilled. Hospitals and healthcare get large injection. $150 billion for local governments. Help for small business while closed. “Help is on the way,” said Senator Schumer. 

Legislation to be formally voted on later Wednesday, passage is expected to be a done deal.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said Trump will sign the bill.

But details have not been released as yet.

wsj.com/articles/trump-administration-senate-democrats-said-to-reach-stimulus-bill-deal-11585113371

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HEALTH OFFICER ISSUES REVISED (AND MORE DETAILED) SHELTER-IN-PLACE ORDER

Post Date: 03/24/2020 7:49 PM

On March 17, 2020, Mendocino County’s Public Health Officer issued a Health Order requiring all residents to stay home except for essential needs.

On March 19, 2020, California Governor Newsom issued an immediate Executive Order, requiring all Californians to shelter in their place of residence, except as necessary to maintain or access critical systems and services. Today, March 24, 2020, the County Health Officer revised Mendocino County’s order to align with California’s Order. This Order goes into effect today, March 24, 2020, at 10:00 p.m. and will be in place until further notice. The major changes in the Order includes: stricter list of essential business to align with the State order, closure of all parks within Mendocino County and the order will be in place until rescinded. We urge all residents to closely follow the restrictions in both the County and State Health Orders.

This revision is especially important, as the County Health Officer Dr. Noemi Doohan has confirmed a second case of COVID-19 in our community.

Regarding the new COVID-19 case, Dr. Doohan stated, “This case is related to high risk travel and it does not appear to indicate community spread. This person is on home isolation and does not pose a risk to the public and will be actively monitored by public health officials along with their primary healthcare provider. The clinic where this case was identified used proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and handled this case in an exemplary manner that protected their healthcare workers, staff and patients from exposure. The Health Officer was informed of this case this morning. We will continue to release announcements of new cases promptly, within hours, when possible.”

This Order is to ensure that the maximum number of people shelter in their places of residence to the maximum extent possible, in order to slow the spread of COVID-19. The Order directs all residents to remain at their place of residence, except to conduct Essential Activities, Essential Business, and Essential Government Functions (defined in the Order). 

This Public Health Order limits activity, travel and business functions to only the most basic and essential needs, and prohibits transient lodging for non-essential purposes. To the extent that individuals must use shared or outdoor spaces, all must maintain social distancing of at least six feet between themselves and others while outside their residence. Our goal is to protect the public’s health by minimizing the spread of this pandemic.

“We have been working closely with our state partners to identify areas of the local Public Health Order that can be modified to closely mirror Governor Newsom’s statewide Shelter-In-Place Order,” said Dr. Doohan. “We owe our seniors, healthcare workers and other vulnerable populations in our community our strict adherence to this order, for their protection.”

Essential Activities (exemptions to the Shelter-In-Place Order) include:

  • Tasks essential to maintain health and safety, such as obtaining medicine or seeing a doctor;
  • Getting necessary services or supplies for themselves or their family or household members, such as getting food and supplies, pet food, and getting supplies necessary for staying at home;
  • Engaging in outdoor activity, such as walking or running provided that you maintain at least six feet of social distancing and be we within walking/biking distance from home; (Please note that all parks are closed in Mendocino County)
  • Performing work providing essential services at an Essential Business or Essential Government function (defined below);
  • Caring for a family member in another household;
  • Caring for elderly, minors, dependents, persons with disabilities, or other vulnerable persons.

The business community is advised to refer to Section 9 of the Order attached for the revised list of essential business. 

Violations of this Order are considered a threat to our county’s health, and adherence is enforceable by law. A coordinated response of all law enforcement agencies in Mendocino County has been implemented. The Health Officer will continue to evaluate this rapidly evolving situation, and may modify this Order if needed.

By adhering to the Order, Mendocino County can help “flatten the curve.” Governor Gavin Newsom in a recent news conference shared the following statement: “Just assume that you potentially are contagious and act accordingly. Socially distance yourself from others. Just use common sense. Be a good neighbor. Be a good citizen.” Our actions can save lives. If all Californians adhere to sheltering-in-place we can help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Remember:

  • Keep a distance of at least six feet away from others
  • Don’t shake hands
  • Wash your hands thoroughly and often
  • Don’t touch your face with un-washed hands
  • Cover coughs and sneezes (into your elbow and away from others, not hands)
  • Regularly clean high-traffic surfaces 
  • If you are sick stay home unless you need to seek medical care in which case you should call ahead

For more on COVID-19: www.mendocinocounty.org

Call Center: (707) 234-6052 or email callcenter@mendocinocounty.org

The call center is open Monday – Friday from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

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MEXICAN PRESIDENT VOWS TO BAIL OUT THE POOR, NOT BIG COMPANIES, IN CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Monday he would focus his response to the coronavirus outbreak on helping the poor rather than major companies as the virus spreads in Mexico, and that he would unveil more details on Tuesday.

reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-mexico-president/mexican-president-vows-to-bail-out-the-poor-not-big-companies-in-coronavirus-response-idUSKBN21B0DL

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CALIFORNIA COURTS ISSUE 60 DAY SUSPENSION

Judicial Council Of California Statewide Order By Hon. Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye, Chief Justice Of California And Chair Of The Judicial Council March 23, 2020

The World Health Organization, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the State of California have recognized that the world, country, and state face a life-threatening pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus. As of March 23, 2020, the CDC reported that there are more than 40,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the United States, and more than 500 deaths. In California, the Department of Public Health reports more than 1,700 confirmed cases and more than 30 deaths. Health officials expect these figures to rise dramatically unless the population adheres to shelter-in-place guidelines and appropriate social distancing. As of this date, there is no known cure or vaccination.

In response to the spread of COVID-19, Governor Newsom on March 4, 2020, declared a state of emergency in California, which was followed on March 13, 2020, by President Trump declaring a national emergency. Beginning on March 16, 2020, California counties began issuing shelter-in-place or stay-at-home orders. On March 19, 2020, Governor Newsom issued Executive Order N-33-20, requiring all Californians to stay home, subject to certain limited exemptions. Courts are included in this exemption.

Schools have been closed statewide.

The CDC, the California Department of Public Health, and local county health departments have recommended increasingly stringent social distancing measures of at least six feet between people, and encouraged vulnerable individuals to avoid public spaces.

Courts cannot comply with these health restrictions and continue to operate as they have in the past. Court proceedings require gatherings of court staff, litigants, attorneys, witnesses, and juries, well in excess of the numbers allowed for gathering under current executive and health orders. Many court facilities in California are ill-equipped to effectively allow the social distancing and other public health requirements required to protect people involved in court proceedings and prevent the further spread of COVID-19. Even if court facilities could allow for sufficient social distancing, the closure of schools means that many court employees, litigants, witnesses, and potential jurors cannot leave their homes to attend court proceedings because they must stay home to supervise their children. These restrictions have also made it nearly impossible for courts to assemble juries.

Pursuant to my authority under the California Constitution, article VI, section 6 and Government Code section 68115, and after careful consideration, balancing the constitutional due process rights of parties in both criminal and civil proceedings with the health and safety of these parties, the public, court staff, judicial officers, attorneys, witnesses, jurors, and others present at these proceedings, among other considerations, I find good cause to order that:

All jury trials are suspended and continued for a period of sixty (60) days from the date of this order. Courts may conduct such a trial at an earlier date, upon a finding of good cause shown or through the use of remote technology, when appropriate.

The time period provided in Penal Code section 1382 for the holding of a criminal trial is extended for a period of sixty (60) days from the date of this order. Courts may conduct such a trial at an earlier date, upon a finding of good cause shown or through the use of remote technology, when appropriate.

The time period provided in Code of Civil Procedure sections 583.310 and 583.320 for the holding of a civil trial is extended for a period of sixty (60) days from the date of this order. Courts may conduct such a trial at an earlier date, upon a finding of good cause shown or through the use of remote technology, when appropriate.

All superior courts are authorized under rule 10.613(i) of the California Rules of Court to adopt any proposed rules or rule amendment that is intended to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to take effect immediately, without advance circulation for 45 days of public comment. A court adopting any such rule change must provide a copy to Judicial Council staff and post notice of the change prominently on the court’s website, along with the effective date of the new or amended rule. Additionally, the court must immediately distribute the new or amended rule as set forth in rule 10.613(g)(2). No litigant’s substantive rights shall be prejudiced for failing to comply with the requirements of a new or amended rule until at least 20 days after the rule change has been distributed.

Courts are urged to timely communicate with attorneys and self-represented litigants regarding the status of pending proceedings.

I reserve the authority to rescind or modify this order, as appropriate, to address changing circumstances. This order may be deemed part of the record in affected cases for purposes of appeal without the need to file the order in each case.

Date: March 23, 2020

Hon. Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye Chief Justice of California and Chair of the Judicial Council


The Mendocino County District Attorney's Office remains in full operation in the face of a new California Supreme Court order affecting court operations statewide.

DA Dave Eyster said Tuesday, "We remain open during normal business hours, and we are working closely with the local courts to keep moving cases through the judicial system."

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SUPES ADD VIRUS RESPONSE TO TUESDAY’S AGENDA

by Mark Scaramella

After County Counsel Christian Curtis explained the procedural requirements Tuesday morning, the Board of Supervisors quickly decided to add the virus emergency to their previously posted agenda.

Health Officer Dr. Noemi Doohan summarized her current activities: Testing: Basically, things are working well so far, albeit that the numbers are still relatively low. She said that she was about to issue more restrictions, including the closing of County parks. She may also mandate some kind of increased social distancing at essential businesses like grocery stores where people have trouble maintaining healthy distance.

“We have not hit the exponential growth stage yet here,” Doohan added, “but if we don’t act, we will.”

Sheriff Matt Kendall told that Board that his crew has contacted about 100 hotels and motels regarding staying closed except for essential needs. Lieutenant Shannon Barney added that in Anderson Valley they had checked about 15 tasting rooms which were closed. (There are at least double that, but as far as we know, there are no tasting rooms open in the Anderson Valley. And since hotels and motels have been closed, wine tourists are not venturing north anyway.)

Supervisor John McCowen was audibly alarmed about what Mendo may face, veering off into Worst Case Speculation, if not hysteria, simply applying the Governor’s bleak forecasts to Mendo might mean up to 30,000 or 40,000 cases here. “It’s incredibly serious,” said McCowen, “People we know and love are at tremendous risk.”

Dr. Doohan tried to tone down the discussion by saying that none of the state’s Health Officers have seen the data behind the Governor’s projections, implying that they might be a bit high.

Doohan then said that Mendo’s second case of virus infection was confirmed recently. That case was an “inland” case and all necessary protective steps have been taken. She didn’t offer any more particulars.

Supervisor Ted Williams asked about Mendo’s healthcare capacity.

Dr. Doohan said that Mendo can handle about 45 people in ICU on ventilators. But under what she called a “moderate scenario,” as many as 1800 people might need such such treatment in the next 12 months. Further, each such patient could need to be on a ventilator for up to eight weeks. “We don’t have that,” said Doohan. “So 1800 people could die.” Doohan also predicted that the situation is likely to continue for “an extended period of time. It’s hard to assess. It could take months. There is no end date.”

Supervisor McCowen, after acknowledging that the Health Officer was responsible for issuing the virus related rules and restrictions, said he wanted to have more input. “We need a better method for input and feedback,” complained McCowen.

County Counsel Christian Curtis pointed out that sometimes there’s just no time to run everything by the Supervisors, adding that he (Curtis) realizes that sometimes the orders could be clearer. “But there are statutory requirements,” said Curtis, and the Governor’s order that was used as a model “had problems.” Curtis said he’d be happy to take input from the Board, but didn’t want to interfere with the Health Officer’s timing or priorities.

Perhaps the biggest news of the day came when the Board voted unanimously to impose an eviction moratorium until the end of May. The moratorium covers both renters and homeowners, saying that evictions for non-payment alone won’t be allowed. Apparently, the surprisingly progressive move — the first in living memory — came on the heels of a Governor’s decree authorizing such moratoriums. Nobody asked if any evictions were pending.

Although a larger than average 125 people were watching Tuesday morning’s virtual meeting — usually it’s a dozen or so — the Board’s frequent assumption that “the public” is somehow paying attention to them and their deliberations was as speculative as Supervisor McCowen’s Worst Case statistics.

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FORT BRAGG FACES THE VIRUS

by Chris Calder

This scrappy former mill town of 7,000 perched on the edge of a continent, a few miles from the San Andreas fault, has seen its share of shocks — power outages, mill closures, tsunamis, economic apocalypse. But Fort Bragg is now chock full of senior citizens with a hospital barely keeping up on its best days.

Covid is different.

Fort Bragg never had to tell tourists to get the hell out before, but it did this week. The bars never closed before either but, to all appearances anyway, they are now. The first Baptist Church, in town since 1887, never had to go full Facebook for services before either. It did this week. And ravens outnumbered people on Franklin Street. 

Covid is different.

Whether local systems and agencies are enough, whether we have all done enough, is Jenny Shattuck's concern. She's seen the numbers, some saying 40% of people could become infected or more. She knows from her and her son’s intimate experience with the local healthcare system what a catastrophe that would be. That's what moved her, she said to make her sign saying, “COAST CLOSED; IF YOU DON’T LIVE HERE, LEAVE IMMEDIATELY.

"I feel like people being upset about the sign," — there was a small backlash — "and not being upset about people not paying attention to the rules or other people’s health — I think that's telling."

A sympathetic friend planted the sign in the grassy bank that faces Highway 20 just past Fort Bragg’s city limits in full view of arriving motorists.

Other less civil messages cropped up at a couple of other roadside vantage points. All were removed by the California Highway Patrol within hours.

"Enough is enough! People need to shelter in place. And if their primary residence isn't here, they need to go," Shattuck explained on her facebook page. "Nicely done, girl," replied her interlocutor, reflecting broad sentiment about Shattuck’s action.

But talk of roadblocks and other more energetic methods of discouraging tourism did not spark enthusiasm among local officials.

Fort Bragg city manager Tabatha Miller said on KOZT radio Tuesday morning that closing roads has ripple effects. Food and medicine, not just tourists, have a hard time getting through.

But, Miller added, several things are being done to discourage new arrivals. By Friday she said, the parking lots to the Coastal Trail and Glass Beach will be closed. "We really need to not create an attraction that brings people here," she said Tuesday morning.

Fort Bragg police chief John Naulty and his Department have been getting ready for this for three weeks, repeatedly warning businesses — especially motels, that they would likely have to close in a shutdown. Nearly all have, he said. For any stragglers, Naulty said he was expecting a stricter order from the county's public health officer on Tuesday that would give law enforcement something more to back them up.

Naulty said law enforcement’s response countywide is being coordinated through an Emergency Operations Center based in the sheriff's office in Ukiah. He was pretty emphatic that economic considerations are not part of his mindset now. "This is all new to everyone, to the nation," he said. "We are trying to stop the spread of this infection and that's all we're trying to do."

Naulty said he was hopeful based on what he's seeing of the community's response that Fort Bragg and any coast communities that follow social distancing guidelines can avoid the worst of the Covid surge that is starting to wrack the Bay Area’s health care system.

Fort Bragg's mayor, Will Lee, is also medical staff services director at the 25-bed Mendocino Coast District Hospital. He said Tuesday the hospital has four ventilators (supervisor Ted Williams said at Tuesday's supervisors’ meeting that Coast Hospital had requested six more) and has set up a triage tent and made other preparations for a Covid surge that they they hope will not come. Lee said coronavirus tests have been done at the hospital with no positives yet.

"We expect our first patient within the week," he said Tuesday on KOZT.

Lee said that like the police department, "we've been planning for this for weeks. We know we're not going to get any outside help here in Fort Bragg."

While people settle uneasily — no, fearfully — into a strange, leisurely unpleasant new lifestyle under weather conditions almost eerily beautiful on the coast, Fort Bragg’s accustomed laid-back cheerfulness in the face of adversity seemed to be carrying the day so far.

Fire Chief Steve Orsi said calls have dropped sharply with the new quieter coast lifestyle. He said he also has the impression that dispatchers are sending fire department crews much less frequently to medical calls, letting ambulances handle as much as they can by themselves. Firefighters, like police officers, are operating under a new set of guidelines to limit contact with potentially infected people. 

For the police, Naulty said, it means dealing with more situations over the phone. For the fire department, Orsi said, it has also meant overall less physical contact with the public. Supplies, he said, were a big part of what his department had been working on the past few weeks. It hasn't been easy, he said. The department had just that day been told there was a large parcel of protective masks waiting for them in Ukiah. Now, he said, he thought they would have enough.

Fort Bragg Vice Mayor Bernie Norvell is a lifelong resident, paint store owner, and wrestling coach (on hiatus) and the city council member probably most at home in Fort Bragg. He struck a balance between pretty deep concern and optimism. "We need to be strong, smart and diligent," he wrote Tuesday. "We could have it (the virus) here in Fort Bragg already. We don't know what we don't know. So acting like you have it and don't want to spread it is key. We are strong. We are Fort Bragg. Together as a team we will do what is right, we will take care of each other and we are not going anywhere. No pun intended."

The humorous note balanced out the note of stark concern that came just before: "If the worst happens here, we will be on our own."

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ED NOTES

ADDING STEADILY to the national confusion, Trump said this morning (Tuesday) that he can re-open the economy while protecting at-risk populations from the coronavirus despite warnings from medical experts that strict containment measures are still needed. "Our people want to return to work," the president tweeted. "They will practice Social Distancing and all else, and Seniors will be watched over protectively & lovingly. We can do two things together. THE CURE CANNOT BE WORSE (by far) THAN THE PROBLEM! Congress MUST ACT NOW. We will come back strong!"

THE STOCK MARKET bounced up 1500 points on the assumption that $2 trillion will soon arrive in the bank accounts of… them, probably, but the rhetoric so far claims that millions of financially displaced paycheck people will also be shored up.

THIS SILENT CATASTROPHE is moving faster than the reports of its already dire, hydra-headed consequences. In the Anderson Valley, people are self-isolating, meaning that citizens are heeding medical advice that social distancing is the best way to beat back the beast. Most businesses around the county, except those selling food, are closed. 

AS OF LATE MONDAY, plague stats for Mendocino County were 124 persons having been tested, with one positive for the virus, 75 negative and 48 pending. The numbers as of Tuesday morning were 134 total tests reported with two positive results, 90 negatives and 42 pending. Ms. Dukett of Public Health explained that Mendo's tests are sent by courier to a public health lab in Santa Rosa, the round-trip process taking 4-5 days. In theory. But given the number of pendings, it’s taking longer. 

THE SECOND POSITIVE is described only as an "inland" person which, in Mendocino County is everyone east of the Pacific tide line. The first case was identified as a young woman in Gualala who went immediately into isolation "with close active monitoring." Surprisingly, Dr. Doohan, the county's chief medical officer, was fully candid and firmly acting in the Gualala case: ”I have ordered the closure of a business that knowingly continued to operate in a manner that created a risk to the public’s health, the Breaker’s Hotel and Vue restaurant in Gualala.” Which is where the young woman worked who tested positive.

JUST IN! Dr. Fauci appeared at Trump's press conference today. If the Trumpers had non-personed the doctor the optics, as they say, would have been bad, even for them.

I RECEIVED an email from a colleague in infectious diseases. His message was in no way reassuring. He made three main points:

1. This is not business as usual. This will be different from what anyone living has ever experienced. The closest comparitor is the 1918 influenza.

2. Early social distancing is the best weapon we have to combat Covid-19.

3. Humanity will get through this fine, but be prepared for major changes in how we function and behave as a society until either we're through the pandemic or we have mass immunization available.

I am writing in haste. This is a fast-moving situation, and the numbers are constantly changing — certainly the ones I have given here will be out of date by the time you read this. What's very clear is that we must comply immediately with whatever measures competent public health authorities urge us to take, even if they seem disproportionate. It's time to increase 'social distance' in all sorts of ways. And wash your hands. 

(Rupert Beale, MD, LRB)

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IT’S NOT EASY BEING A NATIONAL TREASURE.

“I’m exhausted,” confessed Dr. Anthony Fauci when I reached him Thursday evening in the middle of another 18-hour workday.

“I have changed my tune a bit, probably thanks to my wife,” said the 79-year-old director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “About a week ago, I was going about four or five days in a row on about three hours of sleep, which is completely crazy, ’cause then I’ll be going on fumes. The last couple of nights, I’ve gotten five hours’ sleep, so I feel much better.”

He said he misses the endorphins of power walking, and he is wracked when he gets home at midnight and it’s too late to answer calls and emails.

“I gotta get rid of this guilt feeling,” he murmured about that moment’s 727 emails.

He said he has not been tested for the coronavirus but takes his temperature every day and usually has it taken another couple times before White House press conferences and meetings in the Oval.

When I spoke with him, he had been missing from the White House briefing for two days and Twitter blew a gasket, with everyone from Susan Rice to Laurence Tribe seeking an answer to the urgent query, “Where is Dr. Fauci?”

Donald Trump, the ultimate “me” guy, is in a “we” crisis and it isn’t pretty. The president is so consumed by his desire to get back his binky, a soaring stock market, that he continues to taffy-twist the facts, leaving us to look elsewhere — to Fauci and governors like Andrew Cuomo and Gavin Newsom — for leadership during this grim odyssey.

Fauci chuckled at speculation that he was banished due to his habit of pushing back on Trump’s hyperbolic and self-serving ad-libbing.

“That’s kind of funny but understandable that people said, ‘What the hell’s the matter with Fauci?’ because I had been walking a fine line; I’ve been telling the president things he doesn’t want to hear,” he said. “I have publicly had to say something different with what he states.

“It’s a risky business. But that’s my style, Maureen. You know me for many years. I say it the way it is, and if he’s gonna get pissed off, he’s gonna get pissed off. Thankfully, he is not. Interestingly.”

The first time I talked to Fauci was during a panic in the mid-1980s about stopping another virus, the cause of the heartbreaking AIDS crisis. Then, as now, he was honest, brave and innovative. He told me that he tries to be diplomatic when he has to contradict the president about what “game-changer” cures might be on the horizon and whether everyone who wants to be tested can get tested.

“I don’t want to embarrass him,” the immunologist said, in his gravelly Brooklyn accent. “I don’t want to act like a tough guy, like I stood up to the president. I just want to get the facts out. And instead of saying, ‘You’re wrong,’ all you need to do is continually talk about what the data are and what the evidence is.

“And he gets that. He’s a smart guy. He’s not a dummy. So he doesn’t take it — certainly up to now — he doesn’t take it in a way that I’m confronting him in any way. He takes it in a good way.”

— Maureen Dowd

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DR. FAUCI REPORTS THAT ALCOHOL MAY HELP PEOPLE SURVIVE CORONAVIRUS BRIEFINGS

newyorker.com/humor/borowitz-report/dr-fauci-reports-that-alcohol-may-help-people-survive-coronavirus-briefings

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A POSTCARD CALLED “SLOW THE SPREAD” arrived in everybody’s mailbox today (at least in Boonville): It included “President Trump’s Coronavirus guidelines for America.” The back side had a short list of the standard precautions and a summary of the now well-known directions about what to do in various overly simplistic situations. (E.g., “If your children are sick, keep them at home. Contract your medical provider.”)

IT WAS SO NEARLY POINTLESS that we immediately assumed that the cards were some kind of ill-disguised bailout for whoever printed the cards (probably not the Government Printing Office) and the Postal Service itself. If there are 100 million households in the US and the government paid the Postal Service 30¢ a card to deliver them, that’s a quick $30 mil for the struggling USPS. (Mark Scaramella)

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NEW HOURS AT THE YORKVILLE MARKET

After reviewing the developments of the last week, I have decided to reduce the open hours of the store to 11:00am - 5:00pm. Friday’s we will still be open from 8:00am to 6:00pm in order for there to be enough time to collect your grocery orders. Starting next week we will also be closed on Tuesdays.

I will have the Market phone forwarded to my cell, so if you need something during the times we are closed I will happily run over to the store and open it for you. If you want to pre-order sandwiches, or need a bottle of wine, I will be available so don’t hesitate to reach out.

Hopefully this will be a short term change and we will be able to go back to normal hours soon.

Thank you all for your wonderful support during this time. It is great seeing the orders coming in, and I have really appreciated your feedback in getting this new system set up.

Best,

Lisa Walsh

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ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY

Journal of the Plague Year. 23 Mar 2020

One trip to the Cancer Center on Friday. New policy does not allow ANY visitors or caregivers in the building…only patients. Dropped wife off an then on to Wally World (I know I was to avoid the place, but habits die hard). Interesting observation…eggs, paper products, mostly gone. The meat section, however, had empty bins in their center coolers filled with…cucumbers and pineapples…heard later that some meat packing companies are closed, hence empty shelves.

On, then to Cash and Carry, the wholesale provider to restaurants in the area. 50 lb bags of flour mostly absent. ZERO beans, of any type, same for rice. Buddy there told me that trucks are arriving daily for re-supply, but items ordered are not necessarily delivered…they get what they get…the distributors are running thin in certain areas.

Hospital visit on Monday…this AM. Was advised that hospital was closed and to enter at the Emergency Room for the appointment. Wrong information, hospital open for business and no masks being worn. Wound nurse stated that the cases of the CV in Coos County remain at zero…agreed that lack of testing probably is driving THAT statistic.

Heard from a truck driver that Washington State has removed downtime hours from the truckers who supply food to the supermarkets…drive as many hours as able, and I understood that the weight limits of the trucks are being overlooked. Both seem reasonable, under the circumstances.

Phone instructions for the hospital visit tomorrow, the large regional hospital in Coos Bay. Advised that, from this date, only patients are to be allowed in the facility…no relatives, caregivers, visitors of any stripe remain in the parking lot…again, makes sense.

Will rain here for the next week…peaches are blooming, and the bees will not fly in the rain…. Peas have been planted, asparagus is coming up and being eaten…tomato seeds planted in their flats. We are in full compliance with self-quarantine protocol…very easy to do as long as hospital visits are not mandated.

Fox news reports that there are increasing incidents of people failing to observe basic CV guidelines. Police in New York becoming more…proactive towards scoff-laws and the socially irresponsible. Police being sent to small home gatherings where parties and social gatherings are evident. Warnings issued…for now. Washington State and Florida and New York were mentioned.

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THE 2020 GAMES ARE POSTPONED, but Should the Olympics Even Happen Anymore?

by Dave Zirin & Jules Boykoff

What was supposed to be a four-week assessment turned into something closer to four hours, but the International Olympic Committee has at long last made the decision to “postpone” the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.

A joint statement from IOC chief Thomas Bach and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe read in part, “In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.”

Then, full of their trademark sanctimony and self-importance, the official IOC statement said, “The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present.”

That it took this long to utter “postponement” is a mark of shame for the International Olympic Committee. That it took an upsurge of athletes and national federations to compel them to finally act also speaks volumes. If the IOC actually cared about the health and well-being of athletes, they would have postponed the Games several weeks ago and served as a “beacon” of responsibility to the sports world and the real world about the seriousness of Covid-19. This would have been a statement that the coronavirus crisis transcends athlete health—it’s about global health. Instead, they twiddled their thumbs, trembling at the thought of walking away from both their contractual obligations and billions in broadcasting and sponsorship money.

Then again, if the IOC actually cared about the health and well-being of athletes, the Games would not be in Tokyo to begin with; several events were scheduled for Fukushima, the site of a nuclear meltdown in 2011. These Olympics were supposed to be billed as the “Recovery Games,” a testament to the cleanup of Fukushima and the return of Japan as a global destination spot. The reality, as we witnessed firsthand last summer, is very different.

Now, Thomas Bach and Shinzo Abe have pledged to stage the Games in Tokyo in 2021, keep the flame lit in Tokyo for one more year, and, in bizarrely dictatorial fashion, they will brand these Olympics forevermore as Tokyo 2020, no matter the year in which they are to take place.

If the way five-ring power-brokers have handled the Tokyo 2020 Olympics has taught us anything, it’s that the IOC lacks true oversight. It is a behemoth that barges its way into the host city and makes massive demands. When it wants to make a change—such as relocating the Tokyo 2020 marathon to the city of Sapporo—it snaps its fingers like a well-practiced autocrat and imposes its will. Local officials, even powerful ones, are forced to bow to the IOC’s whims. Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike said after the IOC moved the marathon to Sapporo, “We cannot agree with the final decision, but the IOC has the authority to change” the location. The IOC holds the cards.

The Olympics have hit a reckoning point. In the coming year, the global community should assess whether the Games, as currently constituted, should even have a place in our modern sporting life. In the best of times, they bring debt, displacement, environmental hardships, and hyper-militarization. Just ask Tokyo, where costs have skyrocketed from $7.3 billion at the bid stage to around four times that amount, according to a governmental audit in Japan. Just ask the women from the Kasumigaoka apartment complex who were displaced by both the 1964 and 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Just ask the people of Fukushima Prefecture who witnessed resources’ being diverted from their recovery effort to Tokyo in order to prepare for the Games. Just ask everyday people in Japan who must be wondering whether the facial recognition systems that are to be featured at every Olympic venue will be turned on them for everyday surveillance and social control in the wake of the Games.

In a world shaped by Covid-19, the Olympics mark a shocking waste of resources in the name of nationalistic fervor at precisely the time in human history when we need to be both conserving these resources and imploring countries to work together in order to contain and weather the hardships of the present and the hardships to come. That it took all these weeks and a rebellion for the IOC and Shinzo Abe to act gives the game away. The Olympics are not for us. They are designed to feed a bloated global security state that in a sane world should be heading toward obsolescence.

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PLANT FOODS CAN HELP FIGHT VIRUSES 

A healthy diet, in addition to good hand washing and social distancing, is key to help your body fight a viral threat. We can boost our immunity by eating a healthful diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables that contain phytonutrients. These are plant chemicals that protect our bodies from disease. Specific foods that make your immune system stronger include kale, broccoli, berries, kiwis, nutritional yeast and mushrooms. 

To summarize: Drink plenty of water, exercise, reduce added sugar, eat high fiber foods, eat anti-viral foods like ginger and garlic, and green vegetables.

Eat fiber-rich foods like legumes (beans, lentils, dried peas), whole grains (especially intact grains) and fruits and vegetables as they feed healthy gut bacteria (probiotics). Studies show that people who take probiotic supplements or eat foods for our friendly gut bacteria have fewer colds.

We can boost our immunity by eating a healthful diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables that contain phytonutrients. These are plant chemicals that protect our bodies from disease. Specific foods that make your immune system stronger include kale, broccoli, berries, kiwis, nutritional yeast and mushrooms

Keep your immune system functioning at peak performance with a healthy diet and lifestyle. While some people may be more vulnerable to viruses such as COVID-19, everyone can benefit from eating a healthy diet to strengthen their immune system. Fruits and vegetables, especially kale, broccoli, berries, kiwis and mushrooms, have been shown to improve immune function. Eating five or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day is ideal.

Your body‘s greatest exposure to the outside world is through the lining of your gut. Much of the immune system is located in your gut, so eating a high fiber diet is essential. Also, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, kale, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts have nutrients that maintain the body‘s gut defense system. Cooked mushrooms, especially white button mushrooms, increase a type of cell in your body that fights viruses. The key is to eat them regularly.

Berries may boost your levels of natural killer cells, another important cell for fighting viruses and cancer. Lastly, vitamin C keeps your immune system at full strength, but it's better to get it through food than a pill. Eat vitamin C rich foods like kiwis, tomatoes, bell peppers and citrus fruit.

Regular exercise improves immune function and lowers risk of infection. Immune cells need to circulate everywhere in the body in order to fight off invaders, so getting your body moving is essential. A half-hour-a-day walk can significantly drop your risk of getting an upper-respiratory illness as even moderate exercise may boost the number of immune cells in your body.

To download a flyer with this information go to http://wholeplantfoods.info and click on “Boost Immunity Now” or contact nutrition educator Petra Schulte at petra@wholeplantfoods.info or call her at 707-397-5575 

Anna Herby, RD, CDE & Petra Schulte, Nutrition Educator 

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PUTTING PROFITS BEFORE WORKERS' SAFETY: Inside Amazon During the COVID-19 Crisis

counterpunch.org/2020/03/24/putting-profits-before-workers-safety-inside-amazon-during-the-covid-19-crisis/

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FORT BRAGG PRESS ACCESS: AN EXCHANGE

by Rex Gressett

As I reported yesterday, the City Manager has been ducking me for days. Of course, Mayor Will Lee ain't talking. He has me on his permanent blacklist.

The virus just put a fork in it. Count on Will Lee to have a cow if anyone asks him an unpleasant question. Responsibility to the people? Forget that. On Monday, I bombed every City Council member with emails and finally pried the City Manager out from under her rock — or so I thought. Late in the day, she agreed that at some point in the indeterminant future she would do an interview with me or somebody from the AVA.

The next day — SURPRISE — she suddenly agreed to do a public interview. Not with me. In terms of actual news reporting, Joe Regelski of KOZT is as close to a village idiot as you could find in the state of California — or maybe anywhere. There is nothing wrong with it, every village needs an idiot and he tries to be an amusing one. He reads the news off the AP wire in a comforting avuncular manner and reports the local news almost exactly one day or sometimes two after you can read it on MSP. Never ever has he scooped Paul (“Scoop” is what they actually call Paul in professional circles) McCarthy.

Uncle Joe Regelski has missed about a million or two local stories up and down the scale of importance that MSP covers without any failure, omission or mercy. During the crisis, while MSP racked up more than 200,000 engagements. The KOZT site had 1,400.

So, of course, that’s where the Mayor and his City Manager went to do their “interview.” The AVA and MSP are still waiting. The city manager is still hiding and the mayor has gone back to doing whatever it is he does — without answering any questions but the ones he devises for himself.

On KOZT, Mayor Lee was his usual bubbly self-important self. He went out on a limb and admitted that we almost certainly have the virus in Fort Bragg. Tabatha uttered some generalities about restaurants being closed. She did not say that they are closed, in fact, she said the opposite. I think. It was not in any sense clear. It did come through the muddle of smiley-talk that restaurants were doing take-out — by my interpretation the city clearly wishes you would not sit around inside a restaurant and socialize but are they not closed?

I really listened and I could not tell. Maybe she will clear that up. What the Mayor did not say was how many people in Fort Bragg have been tested. He did not indicate how or when you should go for a test. He loudly did not say exactly what he absolutely should have said — if there was a grain of responsibility in that gladhanding, smirking, overdressed phony, that he had tested the essential employees for the virus. Say at Safeway for example.

Let me spell it out for the dumb mayor.

Shut all nonessential businesses and test all employees at those businesses that remain open.

Hello.

It's not that hard. but they are NOT doing it.

In fact, they are not doing it big time and taking credit for being the GREAT leadership that they think they are.

Will Lee is a legend in his own mind and your family might die because of it. Somebody needs to tell Will Lee that it’s a virus. It doesn't care if you are a groovy dresser. It is not impressed with your glib self-importance. He could, by an act of leadership, stop the virus in its tracks right now in Fort Bragg and he is too dumb to even know that he is missing the boat.

He also did not mention as MSP has reported there have been 99 tests conducted in the county out of a population of 80,000. He did not indicate any distress over that abysmal figure or make any promises to correct this massive fail. And since they are not taking questions from anybody that is not a bootlicking whimp, he got away with it.

As the Mayor and the City Manager were having their little tea party with the non-reporter at KOZT, MSP was reporting in real-time that a woman who had been having flu-like symptoms was found at the Comfort Inn in Ukiah. Dead. While Will Lee was bragging about his successful new promotion to a person of importance, MSP knew the fact of the death, the time and the hotel room number.

But you know that, because everybody in the county is on MSP — everybody but the Mayor and the city manager.


From Mayor Will Lee~

While I hardly ever respond to Mr. Gressett’s fictional, sensational stories, I must respond to this story since our City, County, State and Country are in a State of Emergency and his reckless behavior endangers the safety of our community. The State of the City interview was conducted by myself, the Vice Mayor, City Manager and the Chief of Police. The press invited and attended were Joe Regelski of KOZT; Malcolm MacDonald of the AVA (with Bruce Anderson’s approval) and Robin Espey of the Advocate News. We discussed our accomplishments in 2019 and laid out our goals and challenges for 2020. Then the press asked us questions and it was a good dialogue. As I have stated before, I refuse to be bullied, threatened with bodily harm and called all sorts of names by Mr. Gressett just for him to have a “scoop” of a story. I invited Mr. MacDonald because he truly looks for facts and asks good questions and is a true journalist.

Since this crisis began a week or so ago, the City Of Fort Bragg has issued 19 press releases, four Public Service Announcements (2 English and 2 Spanish) and we are sending bilingual messages too all utility customers today. Plus large signs on the three public bulletin boards. We’ve posted many Facebook posts and now Twitter. We have a dedicated COVID 19 website with links and information. I sent out a message from the Mayor to the People Of Fort Bragg yesterday; did an interview with KC of Skunk FM on Friday and the City Manager , Police Chief and I are doing an interview on KOZT at 8:45 am tomorrow (Tuesday).

Tabatha Miller And Dr. William Miller (not related) will issue a joint statement weekly from the Hospital and City.

I am also on the Hospital Incident Command so I am working hard to manage our response and prepare our staff and medical staff for the increase in patient admissions to the hospital in the next 6 weeks. Our main focus is caring for our patients, our nursing staff, our medical staff and our employees.

We have all been preparing for this Emergency for several weeks and we don’t always get information out as fast as we would like due to information changing almost hourly. The City Manager and I are in constant contact during this emergency and we want the people of Fort Bragg to know that the City is in good hands with a very capable City Manager and an involved City Council working diligently keeping our community safe.

At the City and in the hospital, we are on the front lines of this pandemic. We are humans with emotions, anxiety and grave concern for what faces us. We are prepared and will take care of the people that need us. Thanks to all those that have showed compassion and love to us. This means everything right now.

PS- Here’s his ever so nice request for an interview…

“Well here you go Will this is the consequence of a public offical charged with the chief repsonsiblity for our city being butt hurt and petty. We have 70,000 people on line wanting to know what is going on. and you are too aggrieved by my very moderate t criticism to reach out to those people as THE mayor . Here is your big chance to grow the fuck up. talk to Tabatha and ask her to release basic information .Do an interview with me on channel 3 we can get it out before the special meeting. 70,000 people want to know BEFORE THE MEETING SO THAT THEY KNOW WHAT TO ASK. big question . are there any cases in the county or the city ???? are you willing to do an interview ???? Will you talk to the city manager. ???”


Malcolm Macdonald:

Regarding the “state of the city” press gathering. The Fort Bragg Advocate-News was represented. Joe Regelski of KOZT radio was there and so was I. Mr. Gressett would do better by actually verifying facts rather than simply declaring things to be that simply are not. Sadly, this is not the first time that Mr. Gressett has misrepresented clearly verifiable information. It is not the second or third time…Everyone makes mistakes, but Mr. Gressett makes them far too often to retain credibility in the world of gathering news. What he writes, unfortunately, bottoms out at nothing more than speculation, conjecture that is far too often based on gross errors.

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EMERALD CITY!

by Pebbles Trippet

Emerald City's Cannabis Cultural Museum opened its doors Mar 1, 2020 in Willits CA to a welcoming crowd and local press with Willits Weekly featuring a full page write-up including 10 photos of the diversity on display, from the roots of cannabis: back-to-the-landers, beatniks, artists, free thinkers, and the like.

Richard Jergenson's comprehensive cannabis collection -- underground art and artifacts of the past century in pristine condition -- reflect the vast and unique cultural heritage of a plant-based community under conditions of prohibition from criminalization to modern day legalization. The property owner of the old Rexall Drug Store was taken with the collection and offered Richard the space for a pop-up museum until such time as it was rented or sold or cannabis partners join hands to preserve the cultural heritage.

Annie Waters and Richard Jergenson pulled the treasures together into a happening pop-up walk-around space. The moment you walk through the door, you enter the experience of another world, the ambience of a cultural whole -- stage, audience chairs; hippy bedroom; confessional; a wide array of artifacts under glass; wall posters, archival books, historical magazines and colorful art installations filling every space; *'chronic freedom', *a rare 1000-page hand-stitched encyclopedic book of art and activism centered in Humboldt County, limited to 200 copies; even a 'last regrets' bucket of notes: "too many fires, too many thieves, lost all my artwork, I quit!"

The scene was MCed by Mighty Mickey, a lively man in a colorful pants suit festooned with dozens of decorative leafs from head to foot. He says he learned to sew as a circus performer and made the outfit himself.

A prize drawing came at the end for a chance to win the unbreakable brass all-in-one Proto Pipe, celebrating its 50th anniversary since first hand-crafted in a Willits warehouse in 1970 by Phil Jergenson, the pipe's inventor, along with brother Richard and comic book artist Larry Todd. The winner was visibly ecstatic as Phil handed him the newest Proto Pipe upgrade. Richard hopes the 50th will attract a home of its own, as these are public, not private treasures.

Fred Gardner, O'Shaughnessy's editor, was keynote speaker, revealing part 1 of the inside story of Prop 215: Dennis Peron vs. the moderates with the money. Watch for Gardner's part 2 at the Grand Opening 4/19, 2-6pm, along with famed attorney Tony Serra, summarizing his take on cannabis in his own life.

Willits Weekly presented the opening in a positive light: "What could have been a pipe dream became a reality when the doors to Rexall swung open and people entered the store cum museum. Folks were treated to walls and displays harkening to a nostalgic era. There are original posters and publications that span a hundred years from the 1920s to the present, from prohibition to legalization. There's a new Proto Pipe being raffled off on the original display used in the 1970s. Visitors can view a hippie living room complete with lava lamp, sprawling music center and cable spool table. The only thing missing is a smoky curl and whiff of pot from a hookah."

"Fred Gardner, journalist and editor of O'Shaughnessy's...talked about the early and colorful days of cannabis in San Francisco and the eventual publication of O'S, the brainchild of the late Tod Mikuriya, MD...Future exhibits (will highlight) back-to-the-land and other counterculture collections, as well as solar, prohibition, legalization and canna-tourism memorabilia." (WW 3.5.20)

Archivist Richard Jergenson, the guy with the eye and 50 years of staying power to pull the collection together, summed it up: "The time is at hand for this county to share the resources we have been developing for years. One of which is the incredible story of the back-to-the-land movement and the cultivators that brought us to this moment. I have archived this story, which is your story, it is our story. We have become a unique destination in our county."

Partner Annie Waters brings the focus down to earth: "We invite you to think of our community as The Emerald City, something completely different...This museum is a starting conversation to brand Willits as one of the local historical sites of the counter culture, the back-to-the-land movement and the cannabis culture. The truth is part of our shared local history... Cannabis has supported our economy for decades, even though we couldn't see it because it was invisible. We are losing our legacy farmers since legalization and overregulation by our county and state, but we can capitalize on our (true) history... Let us use that as shared economic capital."

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FOUND OBJECT

9 Responses to "MCT: Wednesday, March 25, 2020"

  1. Craig Stehr   March 25, 2020 at 4:39 am

    ~Dance of Immortality~
    Not identifying with the body
    Not identifying with the mind
    The nameless formless Dao
    Dances without interference

    Craig Louis Stehr
    25.III.’20

    Reply
    • Bruce Anderson   March 25, 2020 at 9:35 am

      Not eating a cheeseburger
      Is the same
      As eating a hamburger
      Without the cheese.
      Hold the pickle and onion
      Too

      Reply
  2. Lazarus   March 25, 2020 at 8:13 am

    FOUND OBJECT

    Hey, isn’t it against the law to draw on money?

    As always,
    Laz

    Reply
  3. Cotdbigun   March 25, 2020 at 10:14 am

    I’m wondering who counted the 70 000 people that are [online?] anxiously waiting for Fort Bragg news. Even 7000 seems high, might as well go for 700 000, that will give it the proper importance. It’s ok if Will doesn’t reach out to me and the less I hear or see of Rex, the better my day. Thanks Will to make that happen. Please deduct at least one of those people from your census and you’ll be that much closer to reality.
    I’ve seen people tie logs to the vulnerable sides of their boats so they don’t sink, but they’re probably not “journalist “

    Reply
  4. Harvey Reading   March 25, 2020 at 11:03 am

    https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/preliminary-in-season-estimates.htm

    Jes’ sayin’…

    Reply
  5. Harvey Reading   March 25, 2020 at 11:41 am

    https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/03/25/senate-corporate-bailout-package-robbery-progress-warn-critics

    Whaddya expect from fascist kaputalists?

    Reply
  6. Stephen Rosenthal   March 25, 2020 at 11:43 am

    Separated at birth: Rex Gressett and Jerry Philbrick. Or are they the same person writing under different names?

    Reply
  7. James Marmon   March 25, 2020 at 6:58 pm

    RE: THOUGHT CONTROL

    The UDJ has stooped to a new low by publishing a story with a picture of County Public Health Officer Dr. Noemi Doohan as if she was present “in person” at yesterday’s board of supervisors meeting, on the job. That’s exactly what Angelo and K.C Meadows wants anyone who didn’t watch the video themselves to believe. Doohan was calling in from home, where ever that is? San Diego?

    https://www.ukiahdailyjournal.com/2020/03/25/coronavirus-mendocino-county-public-health-officer-board-of-supervisors-sound-alarm/

    Reply
  8. Susie de Castro   March 25, 2020 at 9:33 pm

    San Francisco Shut Down: COVID-19 Quarantine
    https://youtu.be/uWYdU5weIxc

    Reply

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