- Warm Inland
- Fuzzy Steiner
- Boont Memories
- Wasson Tower
- Chief Report
- River Protection
- Boonville 1915
- Insidious Bug
- Milky Way
- Covelo Testing
- Heroin Search
- Neighborhood Burglar
- Mill Creek
- Yesterday's Catch
- 13 Things
- Acrobatic Archer
- Feline Predators
- 1970 Unrest
- Sculpture Trail
- Davos Dreaming
- Everybody Knows
- Bigger Cheaper
- Early SF
- Great Conundrum
- Young Journalist
- Supply Chain
- Lucky Strike
- Dog Poop
- Old SF
- FB Library
- Found Object
WARM AND DRY conditions are expected across inland areas today, with cool and cloudy conditions along the coast. A cooling trend is expected Wednesday through the weekend, with more widespread clouds as well. Light to moderate rain is expected across most areas over the weekend, with the best chances north of Cape Mendocino. (NWS)
DR. DOOHAN & THE PERFECT PANDEMIC
Dr. Noemi Mimi Doohan, Mendocino’s missing in action public health officer, released the fourth health officer order Friday April 24. The new order makes a couple of pointless princess and pea modifications. The housebound can now drive up to 20 miles from their home to exercise. Driving to a place of exercise was previously banned. But all the parks and beaches at health clubs are ordered closed, so it's not clear where this exercise can take place.
Doohan, in another bold move, decreed that singing in churches is now allowed but only if there are plexiglass screens between singers or other protective measures and no more than four people are present. Dr. Doohan’s previous ban on singing in church made national news, cementing Mendoland’s reputation as the land of kooks and nuts.
Facial coverings are now required except when they're not which is probably a good thing if only people would comply. Mendocino County, as of this writing, is up to 11 confirmed cases with the last six all coming from Covelo where an outbreak was announced last Thursday. The Covelo cases are all stable and self-quarantining at home. But they are probably the tip of the iceberg depending on how much contact the six confirmed cases had with other community members.
The total shutdown of any business labeled nonessential continues and one wonders how long small local businesses can stay closed and have any chance of survival. But anyone can drive to the big chain stores in Ukiah or Santa Rosa and buy stuff that they could buy at a local store if only the local store were allowed to open.
Doohan worked for Adventist Health until last year when she was either forced out or fired. Mendocino County, which needed a public health officer after Dr. Gary Pace resigned in protest of the forced disappearance of Barbara Howe, quickly hired Doohan. Howe is reported to be working for Lake County while she pursues legal action against Mendocino County for unlawful termination while Doohan has authority under a declared emergency to tell Adventist how to run their hospitals.
Doohan’s father was Dr. Claude Steiner, a Berkeley psychiatrist who bought Round Mountain Ranch northwest of Ukiah in the 1970s and started a back to the land hippie commune. Steiner was a leading proponent of "radical therapy" the now debunked offshoot of "transactional analysis" which, like all psychobabble going back to Freud is also mostly all bunk. Steiner may be best known for writing "Warm Fuzzy Tales" which spawned the slang term "warm fuzzies," his signature signoff.
Steiner's original vision for the Round Mountain Commune was that everyone would contribute equally in money and services and all would have an equal say. Except since he put up the money for the original purchase he would have a veto over all decisions made by the group. And he stood ready to foreclose if the land payments (at 7% interest) were not being made. Things started to go awry when Claude invited a group of traveling gypsies, "the Illuminated Elephants" to live on the ranch without making a financial contribution. Or at least the terms of their agreement with Claude were kept secret from the other communards.
As it came to pass, after a couple of years Claude asserted his right to sole ownership of the property including 14 substandard low-rent hippie shacks and detached bedrooms, which left the other "investors" as nothing more than renters with limited say in how the ranch was run, but with no financial benefit no matter how hard they worked to improve things. Instead of their rent payments going to retire debt on the property and increase the value of their share, it all went to Claude who paid the mortgage, made minimal repairs and did as he wished with the rest.
As the holder of absolute power, the founding father of warm fuzzies admitted that he "fell into authoritarian behavior." Where new arrivals had to be approved by 100% of the current tenants and once accepted can only be sent packing by 100% disapproval, there was one glaring exception. Anyone could be sent packing at any time if they fell into disfavor with the founder.
Dr. Doohan, daughter of the father of warm fuzzies, must be feeling very warm and fuzzy herself at the plum position she has landed, having just received a $100,000 raise after violating her own stay in place order by departing to San Diego where she probably has a short walk to the beach. She has all the benefits of her highly paid position without ever having to look any of the people in the eye whose lives are being strained or broken by her dictates.
JOHN STEVENSON WRITES:
I was enthused to see in the Valley People section of the paper, the clever poem written after the fire at the Boonville Lodge titled, "THE BOONVILLE LODGE or THE BUCKET OF BLOOD", by none other than the relative of my former high school classmate (Julie), Ernie Pardini! Also, my memory was activated by the story of the men's basketball league during the 70's and 80's, featuring names like Charlie Hyatt, Rick Couples, Danny Huey, Tony Summit, Leroy Perry, and the swishmaster, tall man embarrassing, "Yewgene," that's country for my former basketball coach, Eugene Waggoner. Yep, I saw Gene do incredible things with the old roundball that some NBA stars don't do in championship games.
BOONVILLE CELL TOWER. “A Boonville Reader Writes:
I was just informed that Jan Wasson Smith is putting in a cell tower across the highway from the Elementary School. I talked to the building dept. And they said that it has been approved and the building permit is in, but not approved at the moment. But it is too late to do anything about it most likely. The building/planning office said that we were informed in the Newspaper. But I never heard a thing. Not that I am combing through the newspaper regularly. Was this posted in our local newspaper? I feel like there are plenty of families that would consider this a dangerous location for a cell tower. looming over the elementary school. (I know that they get away with this in city, etc. But I have some strong concerns with what damages it can cause. EMF is not something to keep pushing under the rug). Can you please let me know how Boonville was informed of this proposal, and passed without so many people knowing? Shouldn’t parents be informed with children in the school?
THE WASSON TOWER was approved by the Mendo Planning Commission in May of 2019, the same day towers were approved for Comptche and Navarro Ridge Road. All three were legally advertised well prior to their installation.
AV FIRE CHIEF ANDRES AVILA REPORTS:
We had a medical aid in Philo on Blattner Rd mid-morning on Sunday and the patient was transported by AVFD's 7420 to Ukiah. While the ambulance was transporting the patient to AHUV, a second medical aid on Ravens Pike Road was dispatched. The call was an alpha level medical (no life threat). Fire units responded and remained at scene until an ambulance based in Ukiah arrived after approximately 40 mins. The occurrence of our single ambulance being committed when a second incident gets dispatched is happening more frequently and is the exact scenario that our new additional ambulance will soon be able to assist with.
Later in the evening around sundown we were dispatched to an escaped control burn near the corner of Philo-Greenwood Rd and Hwy 128. Units arrived to find an illegal burn that escaped into the surrounding vegetation by approximately 75' by 100'. AVFD and CalFire extinguished the fire. The illegal fire was reported to Mendocino County Air Quality Management District due to the improper materials being burned prior to the escape.
During the initial fire response, several AVFD units were diverted to a new incident being dispatched as a vehicle rollover on Hwy 253 on the final Boonville Grade. Units arrived to find a vehicle on its roof with the driver out of the vehicle and requiring no immediate medical attention. AVFD provide traffic control while CHP conducted a field sobriety test and the vehicle was removed by Starr Auto.
THANKS TO DAVE....
I send a big Thank You to David Severn for his ongoing reporting on the wildlife, health and attacks on our beloved Navarro River. His extensive observations and reportage are greatly appreciated.
As the editor has long written, it’s sad that no-one has stepped up to organize a grassroots opposition to the vineyards' stealing of that river’s water, so much so that in late summers the once mighty Navarro virtually dries up around Hendy Woods, further reducing the number of steelhead, salmon, otters and other forms of local wildlife. And this year, since we got only half our usual winter rainfall, the Navarro, lifeblood of the Anderson Valley, will be further hammered. Does anyone but David and Bruce care?
I did notice yesterday that the mouth of the Navarro River is not yet blocked by the sandbar from flowing into the Pacific. But it no doubt will be soon since too little water is allowed to flow to the ocean, captured instead by AV vineyard pumps and ponds. An easy solution is used in other counties: require water meters and limits on takings, so that minimum flows are established and wildlife is protected.
FARRER BUILDING, DOWNTOWN BOONVILLE, circa 1915
A READER WRITES:
Covid-19 is more insidious than most of us realize. First, the job it does on lungs is known to be extremely unusual. And now it is being discovered that many relatively young people are experiencing strokes because of the virus and doctors are sounding alarm about patients in their 30s and 40s left debilitated or dead from strokes. Some that didn’t even know they were infected with covid-19. In fact many doctors are becoming aware that covid-19 is affecting “nearly every major organ system in the body.” “Clinicians around the world are seeing evidence that suggests the virus also may be causing heart inflammation, acute kidney disease, neurological malfunction, blood clots, intestinal damage and liver problems. That development has complicated the treatment of the most severe cases of covid-19, the illness caused by the virus, and makes the course of recovery less certain, they have said.”
So with over 50,000 deaths so far in the US from covid-19 it is unclear whether deaths from stroke or kidney and heart failure are included in that figure. And what about the non-fatal but ongoing debilitation of these afflictions?
It would seem to be a no-brainer that we don’t want to see a major covid-19 infection here in Mendocino County. And therefore it behooves us to follow the prescribed orders.
Stay at home, obey travel restriction - social distancing and FACE MASKS in enclosed spaces is essential.
Please! And, heck, drink a little wine if it makes you feel better.
For now it’s only Anon - for a short time, but,
Will C., Philo
NIGHT LIGHT OF THE NORTH COAST: ’Tis the (Milky Way) Season
by David Wilson
You may have realized during your life of noticing the night sky that the Milky Way comes and goes with the seasons — sometimes you’ll look up to behold it in all of its magnificence, and sometimes you can’t even find it. Did you ever wonder why that is?
The Milky Way to which I refer is that misty path of starlight that traverses the heavens at night, that milky way through the stars that gave our galaxy its name. We see it best in the summer and fall. The galaxy is more or less a flattened pinwheel shape, with spiral arms of stars radiating from a core area crowded with stars. Earth sits out on one of those arms. We see stars in all directions from our planet, and all of them are in our galaxy, but we only see the Milky Way’s prominent misty path when Earth’s night side faces inward through the thickened pinwheel of our galaxy.
As Earth orbits the Sun, our night side faces a slightly different direction into space night by night, such that every half-year our view into the rest of the galaxy will change by about 180º; we will be looking in the opposite direction at night. The result is that some times of the year our night side faces deep into the densest region of stars, a sidelong look through the core of the pinwheel, and the rest of the year we face thinner regions. It is when Earth’s night side is facing toward the center of our galaxy that we get a view of the densest part of the Milky Way — the Galactic Core.
The “Milky Way season” is of nebulous duration, depending in part whether you’re an early person or late. As early as late January, the Galactic Core — the richest, most detailed area of the Milky Way — can be seen by morning people low on the southeastern horizon just as dawn approaches. It continues across the sky for the rest of the day, but of course we can’t see it with Earth’s day side facing it.
February through April, one can get a good look at the Milky Way in the hours before dawn. It will be higher in the sky at any given pre-dawn time as the dates go by and Earth slides around the Sun, such that in February it is low on the horizon at 05:00, but by April at 05:00 it will much higher. By May 1, midnight finally sees the first fringes of the Core are lying low across the horizon from the southeast to the northwest, and it will sweep across the sky through morning, almost like the hand of a clock. From then on, late night stargazers can enjoy more and more of the Milky Way’s best parts earlier and earlier in the evening. Around June 1, the Core will be rising in the southeast at 10:00p.m.
Milky Way season ends for me after its most interesting areas have sunk beneath the horizon in the early evening sometime in November. The Core proper will be gone by the time it is dark by mid-November, but the last fringes of its detail will still be jutting up from the southwestern horizon.
If you are more of a night person, the early morning view in this story’s photograph will come again into our night sky in about three months, when you can enjoy it at around 10:30 p.m. Earth orbits the sun, of course, and of course the planets each have their orbits as well. The result is that sometimes a planet will move through the sky more quickly during the season that others, and this year Mars will slip further behind Jupiter and Saturn as the season progresses. By mid-July the sky will look at 10:30 p.m. approximately how I saw it when I took the accompanying photograph at 4:38 a.m. on April 24, except that Mars will have slipped so far behind Saturn and Jupiter that it’ll still be beneath the horizon. Jupiter and Saturn will still be about where they are relative to each other and the Milky Way’s core.
I am not an astronomer, but I have been an interested bystander for a long time. Capturing glimpses of it through my camera and studying them with sky charts for years has not only helped me familiarize myself with points in the sky, but also to think about how the relative motions of our tilted, spinning planet, our orbit around the sun, and our position in the galaxy all contribute to what we will see at night at one part of the year or another. I add the annotations to the photographs after consulting the charts.
I hope you will go out and enjoy the night sky, one of our truest treasures. If you do, give your eyes fifteen to twenty-five minutes to become accustomed to the night. You’ll see far more stars if you allow your eyes to adjust, and you may even surprise yourself at being able to see your surroundings well enough to walk about. For light, I recommend a headlamp or flashlight that has a red light mode, as red light won’t interrupt your night vision so much. Have fun!
Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter trailed the MilkyWay across the sky, while the reddening dawn gathered in pursuit on a quiet April morning in the golden rolling hills of Humboldt County, California. April 24, 2020.
In the early morning hours of April 24, 2020, some of the night sky’s most prominent actors were on stage as we were treated to a lineup of Jupiter, Saturn, Mars, the Galactic Core and several notable stars parading across the scene. In three months, the same part of the galaxy will be visible at around 10:30pm.; except that because the planets follow their separate paths, at that time Mars will have fallen far behind Saturn and Jupiter, which will still be in roughly the same position relative to the Milky Way. The Hills of Humboldt County, California.
(To keep abreast of David Wilson’s most current photography or purchase a print, visit or contact him at his website mindscapefx.com or follow him on Instagram at @david_wilson_mfx.)
HAUL ROAD'S POINTLESS CLOSURE,
A reader notes: After a month of the state's protecting the parking lot at the south end of the tressle bridge from getting the virus by blocking it off w/ signs, this past Wednesday (22) i noticed that there is a padlockt chain across the south entrance to the bridge declaring the state park with all its many delights is closed— it’s a sturdy but breechable chain,imo; i was on the road last tuesday(21) and it was pretty wonderful.
Nick Wilson: The Pudding Creek Trestle and the haul road north of it are part of McKerricher State Park. All state parks are totally closed even to hikers and bikers by order of the governor. Same goes for Big River Beach, Van Damme State Park and beach and Navarro Beach. Hope that will change soon. Realistically, chances of spreading the CV in the open air are vanishingly small, especially with face coverings and maintaining proper distancing.
Yes, the signs indicate to follow appropriate precautions: face masks and social distancing. It is only for exercise, no congregating, sitting, or using facilities such as tables, benches, and bathrooms. For Now, it is open for the locals to exercise. — Johanna
HASCHAK TO THE RESCUE!
Supervisor John Haschak: In response to the outbreak in Round Valley, 10 county staff are going to Covelo to do testing. The State will set up surge tents for isolation and quarantine. The hope is to test 2,000 people on the reservation and also in community. Please follow the public health orders to keep our communities healthy!
AND THEY KICKED THE DOG....
On Thursday, April 23-2020 at approximately 6:42 P.M. Deputies were dispatched to to a possible robbery in the 3300 block of North State Street in Ukiah.
Deputies contacted a 58-year old adult female, who reported she had been robbed the night prior. It was alleged that on Wednesday, April 22-2020 at approximately 9:00 P.M., Stewart Conley, 45, and Motecuhzoma Vaughn, 34, both of Ukiah, were visiting the adult female at her apartment.
At one point Conley and Vaughn accused the female of stealing their heroin and Conley then brandished a knife. The female's dog started barking at Conley, who turned and kicked the dog.
Vaughn accused the adult female of hiding the heroin on her person. The adult female stood up to show Vaughn she did not have the drugs on her and Vaughn punched the adult female in the face, causing her to fall backwards.
Vaughn searched the adult female's purse and took her cellphone and a pack of cigarettes. Conley punched the adult female's television, breaking the screen. Conley and Vaughn took several other items from the residence and left in their vehicle.
Deputies learned Conley was on formal (felony) probation out of Riverside County, with terms to include a search term.
Deputies learned Vaughn and Conley were staying at a motel located on North State Street in Ukiah. Deputies went to the location and observed Vaughn and Conley's vehicles parked in the parking lot.
The Deputies knocked on the motel room door several times without an answer. The Deputies could hear movement inside the room; however they received no response to their request for entry.
The Deputies observed a window was unlocked. The Deputies opened the window and observed Vaughn and Conley in the bathroom area of the room. Both parties were ordered to open the door; which they eventually did.
Vaughn and Conley were secured in handcuffs and Vaughn was placed in the rear of a patrol car. Conley resisted being placed in the patrol car.
A struggle ensued and Deputies had to force Conley to the ground in order to control him. Eventually Conley became compliant.
Deputies searched Conley's vehicle, the motel room and Vaughn's vehicle.
The Deputies located items taken during the commission of the robbery as reported.
Through their investigative efforts, the Deputies developed probable cause to believe Vaughn and Conley were in violation of the charges.
Vaughn and Conley were transported to the Mendocino County Jail where Conley was booked on charges of Robbery Second Degree, Conspiracy and Resisting an Officer With Force/Violence. Vaughn was booked for Robbery Second Degree and Conspiracy. Conley was to be held in lieu of $100,000 bail and Vaughn was to be held in lieu of 75,000 bail.
BLACK BART RIDES AGAIN (AND THEN IS RELEASED)
On Friday, April 24, 2020 at approximately 10:43 PM, Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a reported burglary in progress in the 7000 block of Black Bart Trail in Redwood Valley.
An adult female inside her residence reported at least one subject outside of her home attempting to force entry inside.
The subject, later identified as Douglas Stone Jr., 42, of Redwood Valley, forced open a door into the residence.
The female, who was still on the phone with a Sheriff's Office dispatcher, told Stone to leave and that she was on the phone with 911. Stone immediately left the residence and drove away from the property in his vehicle.
Deputies contacted Stone on Black Bart Trail a short distance away from the adult female's home.
Stone was detained in handcuffs and pat searched for weapons. Deputies removed a loaded semi-automatic pistol from Stone's pants pocket.
A search of Stone's vehicle revealed several items of personal property not belonging to Stone. These items were recognized by Deputies as property stolen from victims of previously reported burglaries in the Black Bart Trail area.
Also located in Stone's pants pockets was a small pry bar. The pry bar was compared to the pry marks left on the door frame of the adult female's house and appeared to be a match.
Based on the Deputies' investigation, Stone was arrested for Burglary, Possession of Stolen Property, Possession of an Unregistered Firearm, Carrying a Concealed Firearm, Prowling, and Vandalism.
Stone was transported to the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be booked and held in lieu of $75,000 bail.
Deputies researched burglary cases in the general area and suspected Stone might be involved in several other burglaries. Based on the Deputies' investigations, a search warrant was authorized for Stone's residence, located in the Black Bart Trail community.
Deputies from the Sheriff's Office patrol division along with investigators from the Sheriff's Office Detective Bureau, the County of Mendocino Marijuana Enforcement Team (COMMET) and the Mendocino Major Crimes Task Force (MMCTF) served the search warrant at Stone's residence.
A search of Stone's residence revealed more property stolen from numerous other previously reported burglaries. Additional tools commonly used in the commission of burglary and other thefts were located within Stone's residence.
Also located in the residence was a large quantity of firearms, firearm parts, ammunition and explosive device precursors.
Many of the firearms and firearms parts were determined to be either stolen or illegal to possess in the State of California. Due to the presence of explosive materials, the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad responded to assist with the investigation and collection of the explosive materials.
While serving the warrant, Deputies learned Stone had already posted bail for his previous arrest.
Based on the additional facts and evidence gathered at Stone's residence, a Be-On-the-Look-Out was broadcast requesting he be arrested for additional charges relating to this case and several other cases being investigated by the Sheriff's Office.
Stone later contacted Deputies and arranged to turn himself in. Stone later met the Deputies at the Sheriff's Office Ukiah station and was taken into custody without incident.
Stone was booked into the Mendocino County Jail a second time for Possession of Stolen Property, Unlawfully Possessing Marijuana for Sale, Manufacture of an Assault Rifle, Possession of an Assault Rifle, Possession of a Silencer, and Possession of Burglary tools.
In accordance with the COVID-19 emergency order issued by the State of California Judicial Council, Stone's bail was set at zero dollars and he was released after the jail booking process.
VIRTUAL WATERSHED PLANNING DURING COVID-19
by Linda MacElwee & Patty Madigan
After a seriously dry winter, and with the Covid-19 virus, we’re staying home—just like you. In the meantime, we want to help people prepare for what is shaping up to be our next looming challenge, another severe drought year. The Mendocino County Resource Conservation District (RCD) in partnership with The Nature Conservancy, Trout Unlimited, the Navarro River Resource Center and others are concentrating their efforts on supporting our community’s water resilience for the days ahead.
If you are a creek-side property dweller, we have a little temperature sensor that can transmit data to your smart phone. These sensors, which are available through a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation—record temperature trends and let you know when pools dry up or, even better, if they stay wet and available to fish during the hottest part of the season. Better flow conditions keep our swimming holes full and provide refugia for wildlife. Because of the location and suitable temperatures for fish, especially Coho Salmon, Mill Creek has been identified by the RCD and our conservation partners for a pilot program.
We’re piloting a watershed and community-based effort in Mill Creek watershed working with landowners to develop projects and a plan to improve flows for water supplies and fish. In the summer and early fall we’ll be working with residents in the Mill Creek watershed, off Holmes Ranch and Nash-Mill Road networks, to map wet and dry sections of stream to know better where water projects are needed. Supported by funding from the Wildlife Conservation Board — the plan will help residents implement water conservation and storage strategies in a pilot project with support from the RCD. Through off-stream storage and forbearance (from summer pumping), rainwater catchment, and community water management of timing of pumping—we hope to maintain or restore, even a trickle to support flows and fish. Property owners participating in the pilot program benefit from summer/fall water security for on-farm, ranch or domestic water needs.
We will be sending out a water-use survey to Mill Creek properties in the coming days to help understand how and when people need water. We’re in the process of working with locals on some informational signs to help residents stay informed about flows, fish, and drought predictions for residents to manage their water systems. And, to highlight the great work neighbors are already doing to improve stream flows and increase water supply reliability, we are working with local artists to develop “blue fish” to highlight where water conservation projects are being implemented. This idea for recognizing the stewardship effort of landowners is modeled after the Mattole River’s Sanctuary Forest. To learn more go to our website https://mcrcd.org/resources/flow-enhancement or contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org (707) 895-3230
CATCH OF THE DAY, April 27, 2020
JACKSON REYNOLDS, Point Arena. Domestic abuse.
RICHARD SUGGS, Ukiah. Parole violation.
DON WILTSE, Laytonville. Parole violation. (Frequent Flyer)
13 THINGS I’VE LEARNED IN THE CORONA CRISIS
by Jonah Raskin
1. The U.S. and the world were caught off guard by Corona.
2. U.S. hospitals were stressed to the max but rebounded well.
3. Many people died who might otherwise have been saved.
4. Prisoners who were released should have been released a long time ago.
5. We gotta let sound science be a primary guide.
6. This was a global pandemic that played out locally and no two locales were identical.
7. The Green New Deal has begun – Ford shifting to making masks and ventilators.
8. We will be, from now on, under a near permanent state of alert and preparedness.
9. The poor get sicker and die faster than the wealthy.
10. The divide between North and South, developed and developing world, has never been greater.
11. The less said about Trump the better.
12. Capitalism is more resilient that its critics claim.
13. We need health care for all and accessible hospitals in rural as well as urban areas.
"OF ALL THE ANIMALS, there is no denying it, the Timsy is the most pretty, the most fine. It is not her mere corpus that is beautiful; it is her bloom of aliveness. Her ‘infinite variety’; the soft, snow-flakey lightness of her, and at the same time her lean, heavy ferocity. I had never realized the latter, till I was lying in bed one day moving my toe, unconsciously, under the bedclothes. Suddenly a terrific blow struck my foot. The Timsy had sprung out of nowhere, with a hurling, steely force, thud upon the bedclothes where the toe was moving. It was as if someone had aimed a sudden blow, vindictive and unerring.
She looked at me with the vacant, feline glare of her hunting eyes. It is not even ferocity. It is the dilation of the strange, vacant arrogance of power. The power is in her."
— D.H. Lawrence, "Reflections on the Death of a Porcupine by D.H. Lawrence"
This is one of my favorite essays. It describes cats perfectly. When the sky starts to lighten, my cat, Nefertiti, starts to gently walk along the perimeter of the bed until I sense her and acknowledge her. She purrs happily when I pet her and rub her face and belly. Then, I open the window adjacent to the bed and she stalks the birds at the feeder with her eyes. My affectionate pet has instantly transformed into a killer. I can pet her while she's “hunting" without fear of being bitten or scratched but in her eyes is the glare that Lawrence so eloquently describes.
— Louis Bedrock
FIFTY YEARS AGO THIS SPRING, MILLIONS OF STUDENTS STRUCK TO END THE WAR IN VIETNAM
President Richard Nixon prided himself on the accuracy of his political prognostication. He was never more prescient than in a remark made fifty years ago this month to his secretary, just before delivering a White House address that announced a US military invasion of Cambodia. “It’s possible,” Nixon told her, “that the campuses are really going to blow up after this speech.”
CLOVERDALE SCULPTURE TRAIL
An alternative to the installation of the 2020-2021 Cloverdale Sculpture Trail, now on hold, has been created. Determined to keep the Trail alive and interesting to the public sequestered at home, an online tour of the Trail was created, which includes 11 new sculptures selected for installation before the unwanted guest, COVID-19, arrived on our doorstep. The online tour was also created to preserve 16 years of sculptures in Cloverdale, and to support the sculptors waiting for an installation date.
The online tour is in the form of a Flip Book. The book includes images of the sculptures, size and composition of sculptures, artist statements and sculpture statements. The book was produced in anticipation of the new sculptures gracing the downtown streets of Cloverdale when the virus guidelines permit. The date of physical installation will be published online at the Sculpture Trail website where additional information on the year round Trail is available.
To enjoy the unique sculptures selected for the 2020-2021 Cloverdale Sculpture Trail and sculptures remaining from 2019-2020 visit www.cloverdalesculpturetrail.org.
by J.W. Grimes
Scene: 2013. Small park with cushioned benches located amongst the meeting halls in Davos, Switzerland. The World Economic Forum is in progress and busy, important people—economists, nation presidents, political activists, scientists, corporate executives, think tank directors, famed novelists and cherubic actors—all the known human stars on earth waltz by, peacocks among peacocks.
Huddled together on a bench sits the anemic Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, the pugnacious-looking Lawrence Ellison, the King of Oracle, and the glum looking, beleaguered Ginni Rometty, chief of IBM, a share price languisher.
Rometty: Jesus, Cook, how do you get away with it? You’re the teflon CEO of the century. I get nothing but barbs from my ignorant shareholders. They want Arthur Watson back and he’s been dead forever.
Cook: I beat that one. They’re forgetting Steve already. A little bit of luck hasn’t hurt. But woman, act humble! Lose weight, Ginni. Neither the media nor the ignorant shareholders like corpulent chiefs.
Rometty: No, I’m talking about how you stash all your profits over here on the continent and God knows where else. We park a few billion and The Times goes crazy, sends a platoon around the world to find our non-taxable cash. Writes a weekly series every day, page one, the bastards. If they revealed the same thing about Apple, the next day it’s forgotten.
Bill Clinton leads a group that includes Paul Krugman and Sean “Poison” Penn as they merrily head to the popular pub of the day. Three blind mice.
Ellison: Cook gets away with it in part because he’s a gay bird. He gets political points for it. I’m just saying…nothing against homos. I have one in my family… But I happen to like young women. Hey, standing O for Cookie. He sheltered $60 billion from the IRS last year and nobody picks on Apple or our Cookie here.
Rometty: Well goddamn it, I’m a woman and we only avoided stock at $20 billion last year and I get a lot of grief. Fucking media can’t accept that we women are breaking through the glass ceiling.
Ellison: You’re a baby, Ginni. You got no product. No strategy. No balls. I tell the Little O when he comes begging for money he can have it when the US tax rate on corporations matches Switzerland’s.
All bend over in felicitous laughter.
Cook: Look, Larry the Bulldog, has a point. We get ripped by our friends the Dems and get taxed at 32%. I keep Apple’s off-shore money in Ireland. We pay their asking price: 9%. And you know what—their unemployment is under 5%. People are happy, the pols are happy, the pubs are full, people are playing golf there, buying second homes there and in Iceland. The Irish and the Swiss are people too. The put on one shoe at a time every day just like us.
Ellison: Jackpot, Cookie!
Rometty: One of my directors wants us to relocate there. The whole operation to Dublin. What do you guys think?
Ellison: Think, Ginni, think. You and that dumb know-nothing broad from GM are about to be fired and that will cause a lot of shit with the American public. Imagine two glass-ceiling busters busted. Broomed back into the kitchen. Politicians on both sides will be under mass pressure to intervene. Wanna know what I’d do if I were you, Ginni?
Her head droops, she responds in low-voice resignation.
Rometty: Please, Larry, educate me. I need to shelter $10 billion this year and I can’t survive a Times investigation as to where it all is. Hell, I’m not sure myself. The Brotherhood guy calls every other day. What’s a girl to do?
Cook: Tell her Bulldog but be gentle. We are among the lucky, here in Davos where people talk and talk and eat and eat and drink. It’s heaven. Don’t be too rough.
Ellison Here’s my advice. You and what’s her name from that old car company in Rust Belt City go see the Little O. Demand in advance. Yellen is there and Holder too. Holder the Holder there’s so many things he should have told her. It’s a line from “New Kid in Town.”
Large grins, muffled laughs, same demo, bring back 70’s Rock.
Cook: I know where you’re going, Larry, you brute, but I love you.
Ellison: The two of you tell them you are prepared to resign after the meeting. A press conference has been called by your PR flunkies. Unless, Congress passes a bill by noon tomorrow reducing the corporate tax rate to 10 fucking per cent, the two highest ranking women in the entire corporate world, of Big Blue and Chevy, American Pie, will resign because of the prohibitive and onerous Federal income tax on their struggling companies. The politicians are forcing you out of business. Think of it! And the Little O will promise to sign that bill nasty fast.
Cook: Or at least he’ll get Congress to drop the tax rate by 10 or 15 percentage points.
Rometty: Oh, Larry, I love you. You big old charmer. And same Cookie.
Cook: And Ginni, here’s the good thing. Because of the profit you will not have to give to our government you personally will get a bonus, not as much as mine of course, for saving my shareholders $30 billion, no, but you could put at least fifty mil in your pocket, pre-tax, of course. Only Larry has the balls to take $100 plus each year—-but hey, he’s a founder and you and me, darling, we’re just hired hands.
Rometty: (looking up at a passerby) Guys, I think that’s Putin. I bet we could make a deal with him to shelter our profits in a new Russian subsidiary, maybe an Ukraine one. I hear the music of IBM East, an LLC.
Ellison (jumping to his feet): What the fuck are we waiting for!
WESTERN TANAGER (female)
Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
Everybody knows that the war is over
Everybody knows the good guys lost
Everybody knows the fight was fixed
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
That's how it goes
Everybody knows that the boat is leaking
Everybody knows that the captain lied
Everybody got this broken feeling
Like their father or their dog just died
Everybody talking to their pockets
Everybody wants a box of chocolates
And a long stem rose
Everybody knows that you love me baby
Everybody knows that you really do
Everybody knows that you've been faithful
Ah give or take a night or two
Everybody knows you've been discreet
But there were so many people you just had to meet
Without your clothes
And everybody knows
And everybody knows that it's now or never
Everybody knows that it's me or you
And everybody knows that you live forever
Ah when you've done a line or two
Everybody knows the deal is rotten
Old Black Joe's still pickin' cotton
For your ribbons and bows
And everybody knows
And everybody knows that the Plague is coming
Everybody knows that it's moving fast
Everybody knows that the naked man and woman
Are just a shining artifact of the past
Everybody knows the scene is dead
But there's gonna be a meter on your bed
That will disclose
What everybody knows
And everybody knows that you're in trouble
Everybody knows what you've been through
From the bloody cross on top of Calvary
To the beach of Malibu
Everybody knows it's coming apart
Take one last look at this Sacred Heart
Before it blows
And everybody knows
— Leonard Cohen
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
In terms of big vs small, I don’t think it’s an either / or proposition. I think it will be both. We could have a kind of barbell economy with some of the big survivors getting even bigger. Think JP Morgan / Chase, McDonald’s, Proctor & Gamble, Union Pacific, etc. alongside smaller more nimble local businesses. Giant businesses got that way for a reason, they are (often) more efficient than smaller competitors. Lot’s of people eat at McDonald’s because it’s cheaper than the (usually better) mom & pop place across the street. All those defunct stores on main streets across the country had their goods shipped to them by trucks, usually in many separate trucks moving goods from point to point. Walmart started off as a small town dry-goods merchant in Arkansas where Mr. Sam got the idea to turn a small department store into a giant warehouse with some cash registers in front staffed by minimum wage workers. Then Jeff Bezos took it a step further by eliminating the brick & mortar store altogether. The Amazon warehouse out by the airport in my city is probably over a million sq. ft. Sure, they ship everything to the customer, but on the other hand look at all the car trips to the store those customers no longer take.
GOLD RUSH ERA, SAN FRANCISCO
THE GREAT CONUNDRUM
by James Kunstler
Don’t it always seem to go, that you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone, Joni Mitchell trilled half a century ago. Another song, by CSN, went, it’s been a long time coming, it’s gonna be a long time gone. Boomers. Back in the day – before they invented the hedge fund, glyphosate, and political correctness – they had a way with the deep vision thing. And now, here we are! Just like they saw it.
Open up is code, of course, for return to normal. You’re kidding, right? Where I live, the future happened ten years ago. Main Street is nothing but consignment shops, that is, old stuff people got rid of, mostly for good reasons. The one thing you can’t get there is food, unless there’s a bowl of mints next to the cash register. Oh, and the Kmart in town shuttered exactly a year ago, so the supply of new-stuff-waiting-to-be-old-stuff has been cut off, too. Welcome to America, the next chapter.
The public is understandably frantic to bust out of their quarantine bunkers. Seven weeks of jigsaw puzzles bears an interesting resemblance to the old Chinese water torture. (Can you even say that? There, I said it for you.) What will they find as they emerge blinking from the doleful demi-life of the sequester? It’s liable to be a society in which just about everything no longer works the way it was set up to work.
For instance: work itself. A lot of it has gone missing. Despite the feel-good propaganda broadcast on CBS’s 60 Minutes, converting General Motors’ Kokomo plant into an emergency respirator manufacturing operation is not going to save that company, or the greater mission it serves: US suburban life per se. The car industry was on-the-ropes before the Covid-19 virus landed. Car dealers were so desperate to move the merch off the lot last year that they attempted to induce folks who had already defaulted on their car loans to come sign up for another car and a new loan. And that was after they’d tried seven-year loans for pre-owned vehicles. General Motors sold 7.7 million vehicles last year, while the whole US auto industry sold 17 million. They are not going to survive as boutique car-makers.
Which leads to the Great Conundrum of the moment: Reality is telling us that things organized on the gigantic scale are entering failure mode; but so many Americans are employed by exactly those activities organized on the gigantic scale. Or were, I should say. The humungous joint effort by the federal government and its caporegime, the federal reserve, to flood the system with dollars is precisely a desperate effort to prop up the giant-scale activities that defined the prior state-of-things. Those giant enterprises even did an end-run around the truly small businesses that were supposed to get scores of billions in grants, loans, and bailouts so congress is attempting a do-over of that play.
The question, then, is how do you go through a swift and dramatic re-scaling of a hypertrophic, excessively complex, ecologically fragile economic system in a way that doesn’t produce a whole lot of damage? I can’t answer that satisfactorily except to say this: at least recognize what the macro trend is (downscaling and re-localization), and support that as much as possible. Don’t knock yourself out trying to save giant, foundering enterprises that need to go out of business. Don’t bankrupt the society or destroy the meaning of its money to prevent the necessary bankruptcy of things that must go bankrupt. Remove as many obstacles as you possibly can to allow smaller-scaled enterprises to thrive and especially to support the rebuilding of local networks that smaller-scaled businesses play their roles in.
Apart from the insane spending orgy of the fed-gov and the fed, a lot of this is already underway organically and emergently. Few have failed to notice the death throes of national chain retail, for instance. Macy’s, JC Penny, Neiman Marcus and many other outfits like them are whirling around the drain. By the way, even the holy sainted Walmart will not be immune to this trend. Its supply lines have been cut. And, as I averred on Friday, Amazon’s dumb-ass business model will sink with the oil and trucking industries. Realize, too, commerce will persist in human life. It just won’t be the Blue-Light-Special, credit-fueled phantasmagoria we got used to for a few decades. Commerce, i.e. the trade in goods, will have to be reorganized differently. There are huge opportunities for young people who recognize this.
All this remains to be worked out, and quite a work-out it is apt to be before we get to it. Even with those glorious $1200 checks, millions of people know just how broke and how probably screwed they are. They are being let out of confinement just as fine spring weather sweeps across the land. It will be momentarily exhilarating. Then, the rage and resentment will percolate up and the bile will rise. Before you know it, they’ll be singing that other old Boomer refrain of yesteryear (the Rolling Stones): Summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the street….
(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)
CHINATOWN, Old San Francisco
HOW I GOT MY START IN JOURNALISM
by Larry Livermore
I woke up this morning wondering how my life might have been different if I had learned to read from books instead of the newspaper.
My family was literate, but working class. We didn’t have a lot of books, but we were never without a newspaper subscription. Mom and Dad despised the right-wing slant of the Detroit News, but never let that stop them from poring over it every night. Starting when I was three, I’d sprawl out on the floor with whatever pages they weren’t looking at and try to decipher them.
After a few months I’d figured out most of the letters and the sounds they represented. From then on I tormented my parents by asking “And what does this word mean?” with the frequency and regularity of a ticking clock.
They must have had the patience of saints, because by the time I started kindergarten, I could read fairly well on my own. A little knowledge could be a dangerous thing, I learned, when Miss Norman began teaching us our A-B-C’s. “I already know all those letters,” I announced, and began explaining how you could use them to make words.
The other children looked bewildered. Miss Norman looked annoyed.
“Thank you for telling us that, Larry,” she said, “but that’s not how we learn our letters here.”
The other kids were no longer bewildered. They now knew beyond a doubt that I was an idiot.
When I got home, I stomped into the living room and yelled at my parents. “You ruined everything,” I said. “You let me learn to read the wrong way and now Miss Norman hates me!”
For the first time – but far from the last – I saw them exchanging that look. The one where you could tell they were rethinking their decision to have children.
As for me, my disillusionment with both my family and society at large had set in. A week or two later, I found myself in the principal’s office along with the school psychologist, a police officer, two anonymous adults, and my terrified-looking parents. They were concerned, it turned out, because I’d made a crayon drawing of a jail, with my mom and dad in it.
I was used to adults acting in irrational and unpredictable ways, but I really didn’t understand what the big deal was. Miss Norman had told us to draw a picture of anything we wanted, so I did. Did I want my parents locked up in jail? Had they done something to deserve it? I wasn’t even clear on what jail was. It had just seemed like an interesting concept.
It was becoming obvious that however fascinating my ideas might be to me, they were only going to upset other people, so I’d be wise to keep them to myself. I still read the newspaper compulsively; I just stopped talking about it. It would become a lifelong habit; as an adult a couple of semi-ok relationships hit the skids at least in part because “You always have your nose buried in the goddam paper.”
By second or third grade I’d acquired a library card and transferred some of my affection to books. In fourth grade, I decided to write one. It featured a team of archeologists excavating the ruins of Detroit in the year 3000, trying to figure out what had caused the collapse of the American Empire. I finished one chapter and started another before deciding book writing was too much work.
My studies of the Roman Empire had, however, caused me to identify with the barbarians, a point of view that would underpin my timeline for the next several decades. In seventh grade I launched my first successful publishing venture (successful in the 21st century sense, i.e., my pay came only in the form of exposure and influence).
Our teacher, Sister Edna, had launched a class newspaper called the 52 Star News (our class had 52 students, a not at all unusual number in those baby boom days). I was invited to participate, but took umbrage at its editorial positions, which would have had us believe that the students were “excited” or “thrilled” about every idiotic project or homework assignment, something I knew for a fact not to be true.
So I started my own newspaper, the 52 Asterisk News, in which I reworked and ridiculed every article from the “official” paper. It was a huge hit, and the first time that writing had won me friends and popularity (an experience that would be fleeting and rare; I wish I had treasured it more). Kids who had always ignored or bullied me began greeting me with an effusive, “Is the new issue out yet?”
The writing part came easily, but in those pre-xerox days, I had to type each paper by hand, using sheets of carbon paper to produce additional copies. Anything more than a minor mistake meant I’d have to toss the whole thing into the trash and start over.
The 52 Asterisk News would be passed hand to hand around the class until someone got careless and the long arm of Sister Edna swooped down to confiscate it. After a few of these incidents, my parents were called in. “Why do you always have to be different?” sighed my mother. “I don’t know, mom, I guess because if I wasn’t different, I’d be the same,” I may have retorted, but probably didn’t if I knew what was good for me.
“You have so much potential. You could accomplish so much if you tried a little harder to fit in.” I’d been hearing this all my life, so it was in one ear and out the other.
The closest I came to legit (nowadays you might call it “state-sponsored”) journalism was in high school. In ninth grade we had a teacher who had missed her calling; instead of a nun, she should have been a hard-boiled city editor. She announced that we were going to learn how to write newspaper-style. “It’s very different from the writing you’re used to,” she promised.
She ordered us to give her 500 words about some changes being made to the school administration, with the idea being that we’d do it all wrong, giving her the opportunity to rip our articles to shreds and then teach us about the “5 W’s and H” (who, what, where, when, why, and how) and the cardinal journalistic principle of objectivity (it was the early 60s; people still believed in that sort of thing).
But her plan didn’t work on me. After looking my piece over several times and some perfunctory hemming and hawing, she admitted, “This is basically a perfect newspaper article. Where did you learn to write like this?”
“That’s how I always write,” I shrugged. Apparently I’d been reading newspapers so long that I’d begun to think like one. She put the article, just as it was, into the school paper, and it won a high school journalism award from the New York Times.
Heady stuff for a 14-year-old, but it would be as close to the Times as I would get. I was a page editor and columnist all through high school, but when it came time to pick the editor-in-chief, the job went to a more stable, less rabble-rousing student.
I tried some college journalism, but couldn’t stop getting expelled long enough to get into a serious groove. Next stop was the underground papers: among others, the East Village Other, the Ann Arbor Sun, and the Berkeley Barb printed my stuff, and the Barb even paid me (25 cents a word, though I made considerably more hawking copies to businessmen and tourists on San Francisco street corners).
When the underground newspaper scene died away, it looked like my writing career would disappear with it. I did try writing another book, actually finishing it this time. It was a post-apocalyptic pulp novel about a nuclear accident at the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory. Publishers wisely passed on it, but it did provide me with the pen name I’ve used ever since.
After that I stopped writing anything but the occasional letter to the editor. Most were intemperate screeds that the recipients understandably ignored, until I wound up in rural Mendocino County, where the local paper, the Laytonville Ledger, had a policy of printing every letter they received (it would have been a very thin paper if they hadn’t).
It was like seventh grade all over again. Every week half the locals would be laughing their asses off and the other half would be threatening to kill me. Eventually I stepped on one too many toes and the local aristocracy prevailed upon the editor to ban me. By now xerox machines had been invented, and though they were still primitive and hand-operated (the only one in the north county was 45 miles away in Willits, nestled among the manure bags at the local feed store), I had sufficient technology to start my own paper.
Thus emerged the Iron Peak Lookout, named after the mountain that towered over the notorious Spy Rock marijuana terroir and feral hippie frontierland where I’d made my home. My hopes of reliving my 52 Asterisk News glory days were dashed when a delegation of indignant marijuana farmers marched up my driveway to tell me that if I didn’t stop calling attention to our bioregion, my house was extremely likely to burn to the ground, with or without me in it.
That persuaded me to change the name and focus of my little newsletter; as just plain Lookout, it would grow to have a circulation of 10,000. I continued writing about Mendocino County issues, but also covered the Bay Area, national politics, environmental issues, and punk rock music, the latter being, to my surprise, where I found the most readers. My mother remained less than satisfied; though she read the Lookout regularly, she found it a bit too profane and vitriolic for her liking.
“Why don’t you write for the New York Times?” she would ask, “Someplace where you can make a real impact? It seems like a lot of your Lookout readers are just embittered malcontents.”
“Mom, you can’t just call up the New York Times and tell them you want to write for them,” I’d wearily reply.
“You’ll never know if you don’t try.”
The Lookout expired in 1995, an inadvertent victim of its own success. A record label that began as a spinoff from the magazine exploded into a behemoth that demanded full-time attention from a dozen employees in addition to myself. I never officially shut it down, so in theory I could resume publication any time I choose, but that would put me in the same category as those earnest individuals who write to me asking for advice on how to start a record label in the year 2020 (my reply: start by figuring out how much money you can afford to lose).
I didn’t hang up my laptop altogether. For about 20 years I was a columnist or contributor to Maximum Rocknroll, Punk Planet, Hit List, and Absolutely Zippo, all of which except Zippo are now extinct. And I wrote a couple of books – my fourth and fifth books, actually, but the first two to be published.
I never did get around to writing for the New York Times, but did enjoy the signal honor of seeing my name adorn the masthead of “America’s Last Newspaper,” as the tiny but mighty Anderson Valley Advertiser bills itself. Not just as a writer, either; when its irascible editor and publisher, Bruce Anderson, got himself tossed in jail for punching out the county superintendent of schools, I made the long, arduous journey from Spy Rock to Boonville and stood in as editor while Bruce did his stint in the stony lonesome.
Despite never attaining a circulation of more than a few thousand, the AVA has both made and reported news of national and international import. Its ability to exasperate and annoy has vastly exceeded any of my humble efforts, and its place – well, niche at least – in history is assured. Bruce, along with longtime collaborator Mark Scaramella, still oversees every aspect of its production, and though he’s now in his 80s, I would continue to recommend that errant school superintendents avoid getting on his bad side.
But when Bruce and Mark go to their reward – or lack thereof – the AVA will almost certainly end, and it’s hard to imagine we will see its like again. At one time every town in the country had its own newspaper, or several, and any idealist, crank, or guy with a grudge could and would end up as an editor or publisher (oh wait, I resemble that remark!). I guess the closest thing we’ve got to that now is the blog, or, more common in the post-literate generation, the tweet, snapchat, and vanishing instagram story. Who has time to read more than a sentence or two these days, or, as my youngest friends might say, “What’s a sentence?”
I don’t mean to sound grumpy, and I’m not, really. Things are supposed to change and old people are supposed to gripe about it, but I actually like seeing the world change, even if I remain a little dubious about where it’s going to end up. When my mom was getting into her late 90s, I’d occasionally ask her if she was planning on living to 100. “I might,” she’d say, “I’d like to see what happens next.”
I feel the same way. And for as long as I’m able, I plan on taking notes.
(If you’re interested in checking out (or revisiting) Lookout magazine, all 40 (and a half) issues are now available in a searchable online archive which is available here. Thanks to Stefano Morello and the East Bay Punk Digital Archive for making this possible.)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #2
The farmer raising chickens can’t get them to market nor can he afford to buy feed for them even if said feed is available which is won’t be in due time. Few livestock farmers/ranchers have enough pasture to keep their stock fed. They require supplemental feeds and/or hay from previous seasons. There is no incentive to spend money on a commodity that you cannot get to a market. Tyson says there will be shortages. There’s no reason to think that will be resolved. From field to your grocery store is a very complex system. One that is breaking down daily. Other farmers are experiencing supply chain issues; outgoing and incoming. Where will you get seed from? Even if you have a crappy little garden you have plants that are modified so that you cannot use seed from the plant for next season. Where will you get your canning supplies even if you knew how to preserve? This isn’t the 1800s where food preservation was common to every household.
THE OTHER PANDEMIC
The “other” pandemic remains. I’m talking about the “corocaca” virus, aka SJDFOTS. That stands for Some Jerk’s Dog’s Feces on the Sidewalk. It can be detected by sight, smell and the disgust gracing the faces of others.
This blight on your community can sometimes be detected on the bottom of some unfortunate stroller’s shoe or, by extension, on the hands of the baby who crawls on the subsequently tread-upon floor.
Sadly, the cure remains ignored by the J’s (aka jerks). Apparently they have no problem with depositing feces throughout their community.
But the cure is simple. The J’s only need to post a sign in their front yard declaring that feces is welcome on their property. A network of J’s would serve two purposes: the rest of the community would be spared the result of their uncaring irresponsible behavior, and the J’s could enjoy the golden nuggets of filth.
My old man kept a dog in the backyard. Being “the shovel” of the family, I can attest to the fact that Fido doesn’t need to be walked to relieve itself.
OLD SAN FRANCISCO
JUST BECAUSE WE'RE CLOSED…
Senior needs coaching to facilitate her use of cell phone and Kindle
For device help you can call your local branch of Mendocino County Library and work with them on the phone. We have experience with many devices including cell phones and Kindles. For Fort Bragg Library, call 707-964-2020, M-F, 10-5. If it's the library's eBook, eAudiobook, eMovies, or eMusic digital apps you need help with, you can check our online resources page for helpful links.
Just a reminder—though the library is closed, we have lots to offer digitally, 24/7. Check us out at Mendolib.org <http://mendolib.org/> and
Have a nice day and stay healthy!
Peggy McGee, Senior Library Technician, Fort Bragg Library
THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE BEAUTIFUL
The good -- at 79 Dr. Anthony Fauci has run the National Institute Of Allergy And Infectious Diseases for 36 years. Fauci has maintained a simple credo, "You stay completely apolitical and nonideological and you stick to what it is you do. I'm a scientist and I'm a physician and that's it."
Throughout the 1980s Fauci worked on HIV and AIDS and was often criticized by homosexuals for moving too slowly.
The bad — At the end of 2019 more than 275 bills passed by the House with bipartisan support were sitting dormant on Mitch McConnell's desk, among them are bills mandating background checks on gun purchases and lowering the cost of prescription drugs. But McConnell, currently the top recipient of Senate campaign contributions from the pharmaceutical industry, has denounced efforts to lower drug costs as "socialist price controls."
"Under McConnell the Senate has deteriorated to the point where there is no debate whatsoever. He has dismantled the Senate brick by brick."
"As majority leader he has control over the chamber's schedule, he keeps bills and nominations he opposes from even coming up for consideration."
"McConnell will go down in history as one of the most significant people in destroying the fundamentals of our constitutional democracy. There's nobody as corrupt, in terms of violating norms of government."
(Quotations from a recent publication)
The beautiful — “The new County Courthouse in Ukiah.”
ON LINE COMMENTS OF THE WEEK
 Conspiracy theorists always resonate with some people … they just so wish to believe such piffle. The “data” presented is at best hugely cherry-picked, and at worst totally laughable. And totally socially inept – a young person with previously undiagnosed leukemia dies after catching Covid-19. Had they not caught the virus, they would still be alive, and might well have led a full life. How does that *not* count as a Covid-19 death? The reality is that deaths from Covid-19 are probably woefully under-reported, rather than over-stated, as the conspiracists like to exclaim. And the conspiracists can never answer one thing: who is the “they” that benefits from a pandemic, from an economic crunch, from a lockdown program? Where is the pay-off?
 Show me one spot where white guys do actual 300 plus acre farm labor working for someone else and living in shanty towns. Please. For years now in CA farmers have watched their crops rot due to lack of workers even after putting out a call nationwide. There are many articles online about pear farmers in that situation. Immigration “reform” has nothing to do with all the rhetoric. The big ag companies want all of our food to come from out of country as it’s cheaper and easier to get around rules. So by deporting all the people who work in that industry makes it so there are no workers left here. In my 20’s, 4 of my guy friends who were in great shape went to work the fruit picking circuit. They lasted a month and said they couldn’t keep up with the 50 year old mexican guys. It’s hard work and is seen as low class so it’s entirely true that white guys don’t work those fields. The pay is not good. Most farm owners use machines. It’s not racist. It’s just how it is. We’re not talking about home gardening or farming, we’re talking about factory farming, the people out harvesting acres and acres of food working long days for low pay and living in camps. I went to the camp Pacific Lumber used to keep its illegal workers at on the river, it was so sad to see how these guys had no way to clean up after spraying all those nasty pesticides and herbicides all day. Do you all not get that the largest group of welfare recipients are low income white folks?
 When the complexity is unraveled, think of the land that can be reclaimed from abandoned interstate highways, the 50,000 mile concrete ribbon running coast to coast, border to border. I knew an old guy who worked on building those roads back in the day; he explained to me how it was done. Apparently just the concrete runs 11″ deep, then there’s rebar, crushed stone, sand etc. What can be done with all that concrete? I wouldn’t be surprised if traces of those interstates are still around 2000 years from now, like the Appian Way outside of Rome.