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MCT: Thursday, May 14, 2020

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SHOWERS are expected to continue today with the greatest coverage and highest rain amounts north of Cape Mendocino. Dry weather is expected on Friday, before another storm bringing more rain this weekend and Monday. Drier weather is expected for Tuesday and Wednesday. (NWS)

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SHUTDOWN OF UKIAH LEMONADE STAND PROVOKES BACKLASH; City Council Promises Solutions To Support Business Community

by Matt LaFever

Don Delahoyde, a Ukiah native-son, set up his lemonade stand on State Street three weeks ago selling the sweet and tart beverage Americans love. 

On Tuesday, May 12, Delahoyde found a notice taped on the stand from the City of Ukiah’s Community Development Department informing him that the stand was in “violation of the City of Ukiah zoning code” requiring him to “pack up and move” the stand or “be subject to a fine.” He took a picture of the notice, posted it on his Facebook page, and nearly 250 shares and 400 outraged comments later, Ukiah’s City Council has decided to fast track changes to city code enabling Ukiah’s business community to adapt to the pandemic economy.

Picture Don Delahoyde took of the Correction Noticed issued by the City of Ukiah threatening fines if he did not close his lemonade stand within 24 hours (Photograph provided by Don Delahoyde)

According to Delahoyde, he has worked as a concessionaire for 35 years selling food and drink at fairs all across the state of California and serves as the National Independent Concessionaires Association president. Delahoyde described his dismay as fairs across the state have been canceled in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and considering the loss of income, he set up the lemonade stand “trying to create a few dollars for some of our employees and keep us alive.”

Delahoyde installed his lemonade stand in the parking lot of the restaurant he owns, The Pub at 585 North State Street. 

Following the guidelines set out by the State of California and County of Mendocino, Delahoyde described continuing to sell curbside pick-up meals from The Pub. After getting permission from the Alcoholic Beverage Control, he even sold hard lemonade from the stand.

Delahoyde commented that it was “ironic” when the stand received its closure notice because “we were just going to close it because of all the rain.” Delahoyde was “disappointed” in the closure notice and hoped the city would consider revising their codes to support local businesses.

The City of Ukiah’s Director of Community Development Craig Schlatter apologized — “the language of the violation, which is standard for code enforcement Notices of Violations, appears severe.” He assured that “on every enforcement action, we seek to work with the owner towards voluntary compliance. That is still our goal with this business owner.”

Schlatter clarified that Ukiah’s zoning code is “complaint-based, and over the last 2-3 weeks we received several complaints about the lemonade stand.” He explained that there are permanently installed vendors throughout Ukiah on “Orchard Avene, South State Street, the Home Depot parking lot, in Alex Thomas plaza” who “secured use permits.”

Addressing the economic impact of the pandemic on Ukiah’s business community, Schlatter stated, “We understand and empathize with the Ukiah business community regarding the economic impacts from COVID-19 and the Mendocino County Public Health Officer’s shelter in place orders, and at the urging of City Council City staff have been exploring other programs to assist businesses in operating during this challenging time.”

Schlatter provided solutions being considered by the City of Ukiah such as “revising mobile food vending regulations” and “exploring if there are other creative uses of outdoor space that would allow businesses to operate more nimbly while still complying with social distancing requirements.”

The issue of mobile food vendors was discussed at length during a special meeting of the Ukiah City Council on Wednesday, May 13. Deputy City Manager Shannon Riley addressed “misperceptions” that the city doesn’t allow mobile food vendors stating these vendors “are allowed with a special use permit and for events.” She also acknowledged the community’s reaction saying, “This interaction indicates the level of frustration our community is feeling. The residents are frustrated, the businesses are frustrated and they want flexibility.”

With a sense of urgency, Riley communicated, “We’d like to be able to move more quickly. We’d like to immediately do outreach to the community and bring a proposal to next week’s city council meeting.”

City Councilwoman Maureen ‘Mo’ Mulheren expressed that she was “concerned about the approach we’re taking with all of our businesses.” She emphasized that the city “educate business and not enforce punitive measures. I’d like to not do that as much as possible.”

City Councilman Jim Brown expressed disapproval with the closure of the lemonade stand and said the city should “bend over backward to help our businesses make a buck. Whatever we can do to help this community needs to be looked at.”

City Manager Sage Sangiacomo promised the city would “move with lightning speed to address these issues,” and Deputy City Manager Riley promised that at next week’s city council meeting the specific proposals would be brought to the council to support local businesses. 

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NEW CALIFORNIA?

by Chris Calder

"New California" is a name some people, especially in rural parts of the state, would like everybody to hear more of. Paul Preston is in charge of that. He's a Yuba City resident and President of the New California Movement, which kicked off its existence with a Declaration of Independence on Jan. 15, 2018, and got its sixth Constitutional Convention in just under the COVID-19 wire at the Madonna Inn Expo in San Luis Obispo Feb. 28-29 this year. Former Governor/Republican Presidential Candidate Mike Huckaby spoke at the latest convention, as did attorney, "constitutional specialist" and Tea Party Activist Kris Anne Hall, 17-year Fox News vet Adam Housely, and Preston.

Preston talked confidently over the phone Monday about New California's prospects. The new territory would cover about 90% of the state geographically, probably less than a third of its population. New California essentially would separate the state vertically along the coast. Vast stretches of resource and water-rich territory lie within its boundaries. The coastal cities — the California everybody else sees on TV — lie without. That is one of Preston's key points: that rural California is an engine for the rest of the state that is starved of representation and clout. Therefore, it should form its own state. 

Obviously it's not that simple and Preston doesn't claim it is. But he is quietly, even serenely confident that it will come to pass. One reason for that is a certain President of the United States who figures prominently in New California's literature. 

Preston believes that Donald Trump might just "remove" Gov. Gavin Newsom and help the New California Movement form that new state. He thinks it might happen soon. Like Lincoln did with West Virginia during the Civil War, he said. Having conservative big guns like former Governor — and dad of Sarah — Mike Huckaby lend their smiles to the New California project, hasn't hurt Preston's confidence.

What's next for New California? Preston said COVID-19 has thrown the Constitutional Convention, and Town Hall-heavy schedule out of whack. But, he says, nearly every county in the state has formed committees, and as soon as public gatherings are in the picture again, New Californians will be getting together and moving toward their goal.

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HONK! HONK!

Curbside Pickups at Fort Bragg Library!

Good afternoon, We have great news!

All Mendocino County Libraries are providing curbside pickup beginning Thursday, May 14.

Items for check out will be limited to what is currently available at your local branch, 5 items per week (20 seed packets total), by request & appointment only.

Please follow this link for procedures and guidelines before contacting the library: fortbragglibrary.org/curbside-pickups/

Thank you and be safe all!

Peggy McGee, Senior Library Technician, Fort Bragg Library

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LOCAL COALITION ADVANCES PLAN TO REMOVE SCOTT DAM ON THE EEL RIVER, ACQUIRE POTTER VALLEY PROJECT FROM PG&E

by Ryan Burns

In a major development for both water rights and the environment on the North Coast, an unlikely coalition of five regional entities today filed a plan with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to take over the Potter Valley Project, a hydroelectric facility that diverts water from the Eel River.

Scott Dam

For Humboldt County residents in particular, the plan is significant because it calls for the removal of Scott Dam, a 98-year old hydroelectric wall that has had major detrimental impacts to native migratory fish populations, including salmon and steelhead. 

The five entities in the coalition known as the Two-Basin Partnership include the County of Humboldt, the Mendocino County Inland Water & Power Commission, the Round Valley Indian Tribes, California Trout and the Sonoma County Water Agency.

These groups have distinct and sometimes conflicting objectives for the water that’s at stake, with environmental interests clamoring for fisheries restoration while agricultural users in the Potter Valley and water agencies in the Russian River basin have their own uses in mind. Agricultural interests in the Potter Valley and upper Russian River basin want the water to irrigate their crops, primarily vineyards. Sonoma and Mendocino water agencies want it to supply their customers and meet their contract obligations.

“The glue that has held this two-basin solution together is that everybody has a heck of a lot to risk here,” Congressman Jared Huffman told the Outpost this morning. “Nobody has a slam dunk on what they want.”

That includes PG&E. The bankrupt utility decided not to relicense the Potter Valley Project and tried unsuccessfully to auction it off. If the plan proposed by the Two-Basin Partnership falls through, FERC would almost certainly require PG&E to decommission the facility — an expensive and involved proposition.

“Their incentive is to cut their losses,” Huffman said. 

But today’s proposal to FERC leaves many questions unanswered, not least of which is who will pay for it all. Alicia Hamann, executive director of environmental nonprofit Friends of the Eel River, said in a press release that PG&E should be made to pony up a significant amount of cash.

“Nobody wants to pay to keep Scott Dam,” she says in the release. “But will PG&E be held accountable for the damage its dams and reservoirs have done to the Eel River over the last century? If PG&E doesn’t pay its fair share to take out its Eel River dams, who will? The plan suggests a potentially enormous price tag. Getting part way to dam removal won’t do any good for Eel River salmon and steelhead.”

Humboldt County Second District Supervisor Estelle Fennell, who has been an active part of negotiations in this process, agreed. “PG&E’s going to have to pay their share,” she said. Nevertheless, she said today’s submission of a Feasibility Study Report Project Plan is a major accomplishment.

“Obviously it’s the fruit of a lot, a lot of hard work and two different interests getting together, the Russian and Eel, with an understanding that we’re committed to respect [each other’s] needs,” she said.

But she also warned that this is just the beginning. Moving forward will require extensive studies on both the ecological and economic impacts of the proposal, and the FERC review process and public review period will take time. Plus, a formal regional entity must be formed to take over and manage the license.

Still, Fennell said the plan’s inclusion of Scott Dam removal reveals the importance of Humboldt County’s involvement in the stakeholder group. 

The ambitious project involves more than just dam removal, though. It also calls for construction of a new pipeline to supply water to the Potter Valley Irrigation District. The cost of the entire project is expected to run between $100 million and $400 million, with the pipeline accounting for as much as $120 million of that total.

Huffman said state and federal funding may be available. “If we can hold this two-basin project together, the public benefits are really broad and unique,” he said. “That’s what unlocks the possibility of state and federal support.”

The path forward will be long and involved, he said: “Nothing happens quickly with FERC relicensing.” A lot of negotiating and technical analysis needs to be completed. Asked what the best-case-scenario timeline for dam removal might be, Huffman said, ” It’s not going to be the next couple of years, but I don’t think it needs to be more than a decade either.”

Dam removal may have to be completed in stages, lowering it incrementally in order to manage the sediment impacts of water release, Huffman said. And while the five parties involved in developing this plan have managed to balance their respective interests thus far, negotiations and compromise must continue as the project moves forward.

“This is a ‘trust but verify’ process between the interests in the two basins,” Huffman said. “You really don’t want one side to get what matters to them without making roughly parallel progress on the other side.”

The motive for continued cooperation is retaining control our own destiny, rather than leaving matters in the hands of FERC, the congressman said. 

“Nobody has a lock on everything they want. That’s the Gordian knot. And honestly I think it’s why this has held together for the last couple years, because we have a chance to control the outcome,” Huffman said. And in a nod to the Rolling Stones he added, “Maybe nobody gets everything they want, but the technical work and negotiations say, maybe everybody can get what they need.”


For the accompanying series of press releases go to: lostcoastoutpost.com/2020/may/13/local-coalition-files-plan-remove-scott-dam-eel-ri/

(Courtesy, LostCoastOutpost.com)

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Aliums & Iris (photo by Anita Soost)

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LOCAL EMERGENCY SERVICES VOLUNTEER Aaron ‘Cob’ Martin is coordinating a grant for fire resiliency in Anderson Valley. The grant money must be matched by hours worked brush clearing, limbing, weed whacking, etc. Each hour worked counts as $29/hr per person towards the grant match. Have you been creating defensible space on your property or place of business? Contact Cob. He has forms that you can fill out.


Mendocino County Fire Safe Council

Creating Fire Adapted Communities in the Navarro River Watershed

Hey there Anderson Valley! Hope your early spring is going well. Just a reminder as you prepare your homes for another fire season:

Any work you do for fire safety around your home’s defensible space and ingress/egress driveways can be counted as a contribution towards this project. If you are out there chopping brush, mowing and weed whacking, keep track of your hours, keep invoices of any hired work and it can be submitted as a contribution ‘match’ toward this ongoing project. If you kept a time journal of any brush burning you did before the end of burn season, that may be tracked as well.

Feel welcome to contact me with questions.

Thanks,

Cob, Aaron Martin

Mendocino Fire Safe Council

Aaron-martin@carcd.org

707-684-9217 call/text

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OLD GUALALA HOTEL

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ED NOTES

YOU don't have to be a Trumper to understand that the entire entrenched system went after him the minute he was elected. To me, most fantastic has been the transformation, at least to the libs, of the FBI as pillars of objective integrity. 

THE FBI, from its inception by the paranoid screwball who spent his off time in a cocktail dress, the FBI has been a national political police force, hence their pursuit of Trump partly because they also abhorred the thought of him as president, partly because the entire entrenched apparat understood Trump, as unpredictability squared, would probably upend them and all the old ways of doing imperial business, partly because much of the entrenched apparatus views itself as liberal in the Obama sense of liberal — social justice at home, the usual imperial mayhem abroad with economic justice not a concern. Hence the failed attempts to nail Trump as everything from a rapist and dedicated whoremonger to a Russian and Ukranian tool. 

ALL THAT SAID, there probably is a Trump-Russia connection, which is why his lawyers are presently in the Supreme Court to keep his business dealings a secret. I'll bet if the Deutsche Bank is forced to cough up, we'll learn that Trump got a lot of his funding for his gold faucet hotels from Russian criminals routed through Deutsche. Finally, though, it's The Plague and Trump's spectacularly incompetent behavior in addressing it that will bring him down.

IF THERE'S AN ELECTION. Trump's mega-creep son-in-law, Jared Kushner, letting the proverbial cat out of the bag, "was forced to clarify" a remark that he is not trying to change the date of the November election after saying "it was a possibility." Obviously, Team Trump, has discussed how to avoid the November vote on his performance.

LA'S MOTORMOUTH MAYOR Eric Garcetti's statement to Good Morning America's chuckling heads that LA would stay locked down until The Plague has receded has caused major, understandable outrage among his constituents. Here we have a national situation with millions of people without incomes, without money for food and rent, and many landlords, especially the big ones, not suspending rent, and the mayor of LA says, "Get used to it folks. You're looking at another three months of this." I predict major civil disorder by the end of this month.

THE ONLY WAY to forestall total disaster in a jive economy like this one is to get lots of money out there pronto to the entire population of under hundred thou income earners, which is what the Democrats seem to be aimed at doing, but which is already opposed by Uncle Mitch and his crocodiles.

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FLATTENED THE CURVE. NOW…

Editor: 

Our hard work has flattened the curve. Everyone wants businesses to reopen, but we must do this safely. This pandemic isn’t over. It’s now up to each of us to take responsibility.

The California Pandemic Roadmap outlines thoughtful and scientific guidance toward economic recovery. For additional businesses to open, we must demonstrate just one case per 10,000 residents and no deaths during a two-week stretch; we also need robust testing, tracing and an ability to house a percentage of the homeless.

The Public Health Department has done its job with sufficient testing and contact tracing. The medical community has done its job with enough hospital beds and equipment for a surge. The city has done its job with a plan for vulnerable populations.

Now we need to do our job. To open more businesses, we need fewer than 50 new cases and no deaths in a two-week period. We haven’t met this goal. If we act responsibly with social distancing and public health measures, we will. If not, we will be jeopardizing our communities’ health and our businesses ability to reopen and stay open. The ball is in our court.

Dr. Audrey Desky

Occidental

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DEEP END MULE TEAMS

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DOC ISER AS HEMINGWAY

Unless I’ve missed something, no one in Las Vegas has ever said — at least publicly — that Dr. Joe Iser, the head of the Southern Nevada Health District, has gotten ahead because of his looks.

reviewjournal.com/news/news-columns/paul-harasim/in-cuba-las-vegas-health-official-finds-it-helps-to-look-like-hemingway/

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THISTLES ANYONE?

Hello fellow thistle removers. We had planned to resume stewarding the Navarro Point Preserve tomorrow. However, since there is a 50+% chance of rain then, I am moving our work date one day later, to this Friday, 10am to noon, since there’s only a 5% chance of rain predicted then. I hope you can join us.

We must maintain social distancing which means we can not work in pairs this month, so please bring your clippers and a spade if you can; I’ll have trash bags and some extra tools in case you need them. Wildflowers ought to be quite beautiful now.

Tom, 937-1113, tw@mcn.org

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(photo by Larry Wagner)

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KAREN'S KAREN

In the ongoing, tense conversation over how long America has to remain locked down during the coronavirus pandemic, one of the more absurd moments came two weeks ago: Carolyn Goodman, the mayor of Las Vegas, called for the immediate reopening of her city’s casinos, offering her constituents up as a “control group” to test whether stay-at-home measures are actually effective. The notion baffled public-health experts, who maintain that a rigorous adherence to social distancing is essential to overcoming the outbreak. It drew swift condemnation from other Las Vegas officials, who referred to Goodman as “reckless” and “an embarrassment.” And, as is so often the case in public blunders, it received its harshest criticism online. Goodman was called “an idiot,” “an actual monster,” and, maybe most damning, “a real Karen’s Karen.”

On the internet, a Karen is not always named Karen. The title has been used to decry a woman named Diane who attended a protest of Pennsylvania’s stay-at-home order carrying an American flag and announcing, “What do I say to your science? I don’t believe in your science.” It’s been thrown at a woman in a local Facebook group demanding private medical information about a person in her neighborhood, and a woman in Tennessee carrying a handmade sign that read sacrifice the weak, re-open tn. Becky Ames, the mayor of Beaumont, Texas, was declared a Karen after she was photographed breaking the state’s stay-at-home order at a nail salon.

— Kaitlyn Tiffany

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THE MAY 21, 2020 PLANNING COMMISSION AGENDA has been posted to the department website at the below link: mendocinocounty.org/government/planning-building-services/meeting-agendas/planning-commission

Please contact staff if you have any questions.

James F.Feenan

Commission Services Supervisor

Mendocino County Planning & Building Services

860 North Bush Street, Ukiah CA 95482

My Direct Line: (707) 234-6664

Main Line: (707) 234-6650

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Bull Team Logging Near Gualala, 1886 (photo Courtesy California State Library)

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MICHAEL JORDAN & THE TRAGEDY OF THE BULLY

by Dave Zirin

In episodes seven and eight of ESPN’s 10-part Michael Jordan documentary The Last Dance, we learned that Michael Jordan once became enraged when a rookie named LaBradford Smith (allegedly) put his arm around him and said “nice game” to him on the court. He took that bit of perceived disrespect and used it as fuel to wreck poor Mr. Smith when they played the following night. We also learned that before the 1996 Finals, the coach of the opposing team, George Karl, walked by him in a restaurant without saying hi. He took that bit of perceived disrespect and used it as fuel.

This is basically the core and heart of the magnum opus that is The Last Dance: the lionization of the idea that winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing, and nice guys finish last. It’s as if Shoah were directed by Vince Lombardi. The Last Dance sends the message to everyone—particularly young ballplayers—that winning in sports and life demands that you be the bully. Everything is justified, if the ends involve confetti and rings. Even hauling off and punching someone smaller than you in the face, as Jordan did with teammate Steve Kerr, is remembered as something closer to a bonding experience—a macho right of passage—than as an embarrassing loss of temper.

The Last Dance, like its protagonist, shrugs its shoulders and says, in effect, that this is the price of greatness. But is it? If this entire series weren’t just an exercise in Jordan brand extension for the 21st century, it might ask this question. It could examine other examples of greatness and ask if being “like Mike” is how you come out a winner. If it did, this thesis would collapse under scrutiny.

Just look at Bill Russell. The Celtics great is the most prolific winner in NBA history, with 11 championships in 13 years. Russell’s style of leadership did not involve demeaning and denigration. The great Frank Deford, in a brilliant 1999 profile of Russell, called him “the most divine teammate there ever was.” “’He was just so nice to be with on the team,’ says Frank Ramsey, who played with Russell from 1956 to ’64, Russell’s first eight years in the NBA. ‘It was only when others came around that he set up that wall…’”

For Russell, the love was saved for his team. The wall came up as sponsors, fans, and opponents demanded their piece of him. Jordan was the opposite. Outside the team he gave us that winning smile and sold us products, but his squad got the back of his hand. Jordan was pure capitalism: expanding his brand off the court, and a cutthroat bully with his own team. Russell was pure resistance: finding love and solidarity among teammates and fiercely holding onto his sense of self off of the court. His white teammates who didn’t show him solidarity, particularly on Russell’s proud struggles against racism, still loved him then and feel guilty today that they didn’t do more. One gets the feeling that the only regrets Jordan’s teammates have is that they didn’t stand up to him more and instead let him break their will. Russell had teammates who became his brothers for life. Jordan has generated only wary respect and resentful awe. The only people who “ride or die” for Jordan are personal assistants, trainers, and bodyguards: people paid to be in his presence. Comparing Russell to Jordan is like comparing Mr. Chips to Charles Foster Kane: Both got results, but that’s where the comparison ends

There are poignant, human moments in Episodes 7 and 8 of The Last Dance: one where Jordan stops filming his interview when he ponders just how intense he felt he had to be toward his teammates, and weighs the cost of that intensity, tears in his eyes. The other was him in 1996 crying on the floor on Father’s Day, after vanquishing the Seattle Sonics in the NBA Finals. Both are reminders that we are not only dealing with a brand of relentless competitiveness. We are watching a human being who has been damaged, and then never hesitated to damage those around him.

If The Last Dance had courage, it would be a cautionary tale instead of a hagiography. It would not only explore the price of greatness, or whatever such branded nonsense. It would be a warning: You don’t need to act this way if you want to win. It’s actually antithetical to what’s best about sports. You can get away with being the bully when you’re the best player on the planet. But being able to bully someone is not the same as a justification to do so. It’s exercising power over someone just for the sake of doing so. That’s not admirable. That’s abusive. Rings don’t make it right.

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ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY

Turns out it might have been the Spanish flu that killed TR in 1919, and precipitated the stroke that debilitated Woodrow Wilson for the last 2 years of his presidency.

It’s odd, when you read accounts of that era, the end of WW1, the Versaille Treaty, the League of Nations founding, the death of President Harding (also perhaps flu related) the Spanish flu gets mentioned but doesn’t loom very large despite killing 50 million people, including 675,000 Americans. That may have to change, knowing what we know now.

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(photo by Jan Wax)

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IN A NEW YORK TIMES PIECE titled “I believe Tara Reade. I’m Voting for Joe Biden Anyway”, Linda Hirshman conveyed a simple message: Like it or not, Joe Biden will be the Democratic nominee, he is better than Donald Trump, and so we have no choice but vote for him, no matter what happened to Tara Reade. I think there are good reasons to disagree with this conclusion, but at least it is honest and coherent. Yet, it doesn’t resolve what might be the most disturbing political aspect of this sad affair, namely the Democratic Party’s apparent belief that their best shot at replacing the most ludicrous president in U.S. history is to field a 77-year old white Washington veteran with – to say the least – a dubious relationship with both women and the truth. Really? This is the best you can do? In that case, no matter the outcome of the next presidential elections, you have already lost. 

— Gabriel Kuhn

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BLACK PANTHERS

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ALL THE ADAM SCHIFF TRANSCRIPTS

Newly released documents show he knew all along that there was no proof of Russia-Trump collusion.

Wall Street Journal Editorial 

Americans expect that politicians will lie, but sometimes the examples are so brazen that they deserve special notice. Newly released Congressional testimony shows that Adam Schiff spread falsehoods shamelessly about Russia and Donald Trump for three years even as his own committee gathered contrary evidence.

The House Intelligence Committee last week released 57 transcripts of interviews it conducted in its investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election. The committee probe started in January 2017 under then-Chair Devin Nunes and concluded in March 2018 with a report finding no evidence that the Trump campaign conspired with the Kremlin. Most of the transcripts were ready for release long ago, but Mr. Schiff oddly refused to release them after he became chairman in 2019. He only released them last week when the White House threatened to do it first.

Now we know why. From the earliest days of the collusion narrative, Mr. Schiff insisted that he had evidence proving the plot. In March 2017 on MSNBC, Mr. Schiff teased that he couldn’t “go into particulars, but there is more than circumstantial evidence now.”

In December 2017 he told CNN that collusion was a fact: “The Russians offered help, the campaign accepted help. The Russians gave help and the President made full use of that help.” In April 2018, Mr. Schiff released his response to Mr. Nunes’s report, stating that its finding of no collusion “was unsupported by the facts and the investigative record.”

None of this was true, and Mr. Schiff knew it. In July 2017, here’s what former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told Mr. Schiff and his colleagues: “I never saw any direct empirical evidence that the Trump campaign or someone in it was plotting/conspiring with the Russians to meddle with the election.” Three months later, former Obama Attorney General Loretta Lynch agreed that while she’d seen “concerning” information, “I don’t recall anything being briefed up to me.” Former Deputy AG Sally Yates concurred several weeks later: “We were at the fact-gathering stage here, not the conclusion stage.”

The same goes for the FBI agents who started the collusion probe in 2016. Most remarkable, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe admitted the bureau’s reason for opening the case was nonsense. Asked in December 2017 why the FBI obtained a secret surveillance warrant on former Trump aide Carter Page, rather than on George Papadopoulos (whose casual conversation with a foreign diplomat was the catalyst for the probe), Mr. McCabe responded: “Papadopoulos’ comment didn’t particularly indicate that he was the person that had had…that was interacting with the Russians.” No one else was either.

On it went, a parade of former Obama officials who declared under oath they’d seen no evidence of collusion or conspiracy—Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes, Samantha Power. Interviews with Trump campaign or Administration officials also yielded no collusion evidence. Mr. Schiff had access to these transcripts even as he claimed he had “ample” proof of collusion and wrote his false report.

He’s still making it up. Last week he said the transcripts contain “evidence of the Trump campaign’s efforts to invite, make use of, and cover up Russia’s help in the 2016 presidential election.”

The question we’d ask our friends in the media is when are they going to stop playing the fool by putting him on the air? Mr. Schiff is a powerful figure with access to secrets that the rest of us don’t have and can’t check. He misled the country repeatedly on an issue that consumed American politics.

President Trump often spreads falsehoods and invents facts, but at least he’s paid a price for it in media criticism and public mistrust. An industry of media fact checkers is dedicated to parsing his every word. As for Mr. Schiff, no one should ever believe another word he says.

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ANTI-WAR RALLY, Kezar Stadium, 1968

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TRUMP DEATH CLOCK

There’s something happening here

What it is totally clear

There’s a man with some bleach over there

Telling me I got to not care

I think it’s time we stop, children, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

There’s battle lines being drawn

Nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong

Young people speaking their minds

Getting so much resistance from behind

I think it’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

What a field-day for the heat

A thousand people in the street

Singing songs and carrying signs

Mostly say, hooray for our side

It’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

Paranoia strikes deep

Into your life it will creep

It starts when you’re always afraid

You step out of line, the man come and take you away

We better stop, hey, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

Stop, hey, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

Stop, now, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

Stop, children, what’s that sound

Everybody look what’s going down

https://trumpdeathclock.com/

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Famous One-Log House Garberville

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DNC MEDIA WING

Editor:

Can anyone tell me just when MSNBC became the media outlet of the DNC? It is a very remarkable, if unremarked, event. I tune in to Rachel Maddow some nights and watch her to the point of tolerance, which admittedly is only a few minutes some nights, as she preens and struts like a self-righteous hen, decrying the daily incompetence and malfeasance of the Trump administration as she immolates herself in self-righteous superiority. She will carry on like that for a full hour during which the viewer learns absolutely nothing, every night is just an endless string of repeats of the nights before.

Remember #where’s Joe? When Biden just completely disappeared from the health crisis stage and he could not even get the technology right to broadcast something from his basement? MSNBC came to his rescue and had him host a CV Town Hall. So far the ONLY consistent reason we’ve been given to vote for Biden is that he’s not Trump. Yes, and neither is a pile of dog poop.

Let me veer slightly and say my hat is off to Laura Cooskey for her excellent essay on the "Stealthy Suicide of the Self Styled Left” — incredible writing. I share her consternation on how easy it has been for our technological shepherds to direct the direction of the smart phone using social media sheep.

Chris Skyhawk

Albion

* * *

* * *

MARCO DREAMS

Zombie Wilt Chamberlain. Clothes. Date night.

Test. My mother's friend. Plus-sign and a turnip. After the fair.

My dream from Sunday, 2020-05-10.

First dream. I'm with some other kids fleeing across an ancient deserted city of masonry and stucco. Maybe Venice, Italy? A girl and I stop in a bathroom to rest for a moment. I have a bad feeling about opening the door to leave, and it comes true: a tall evil happy slavering Wilt Chamberlain bad-angel zombie-demon creature in a mop-rope wig-- what we've been fleeing from. It sticks its head, an arm and a leg in the door. It will pull rip us apart like boiled chickens. AAAAAH!

(I said sorry for waking Juanita up, but she said she woke me up to save me from a bad dream. I said, "How did you know?" She said, "You were shaking." I said, "But it was so fast. I just had time to scream." She said, "No. I waited awhile.")

Next dream. I'm in a big mostly deserted single-floor hotel/doctor's-office building with wide, high hallways. Around the corner from a room where people wait to see their doctor I find a shower room with glass partitions and lever water controls and take a shower but with no soap or anything. Where are my clothes? Here's a jacket. I tie the jacket around my waist and wander the hallways looking for either my clothes or any clothes I can use. Maybe someone's taken off their clothes for a doctor visit and I can steal theirs... I go far through the building and find the shower again, but it can't be the one I used because I've gone such a long way. My clothes are right here. That explains it: I took off my clothes here and somehow got into a shower in the wrong shower room hundreds of yards away.

Next dream. I'm on a date with a strange 1970s Midwestern-style fifty-something woman. I park at a complex of modern school buildings. There's an usher outside on the concrete walkway. I look at my watch; it's 10:30. I say, "How can it be 10:30?" The usher says, "But it is. This way, please." He leads the woman in the direction of the faint sounds of a show going on with audience reactions. I stay behind, stand in the night experimenting with my car key, puzzled by how I can't tell whether I'm locking or unlocking the car by pressing the button. The button on the end of the key should lock it, but there's only one button, like a Mac mouse. Hmm. So is it one press is locked, another is unlocked? Or is it two presses to lock? Try again. And again. I don't want to go into the show anyway; it must be almost over and I don't know who the woman is. But I can't just leave; that would be rude. Sit here on the curb for awhile. It's nice here. The air feels like being out at night when I was a boy. I think about walking over into those trees and seeing what's behind there... Maybe I can fly. Try that... No. Almost, though, so yeah, later, when my date comes back.

My dreams from Monday, 2020-05-11.

Juanita and I are with my mother in a motel room. My mother is lying on the floor saying random nonsense things that might be lyrics to a song I don't know. I try to snap her out of it by asking her a question. She looks at me and says more things that don't make any sense. Maybe she had a stroke. I say, "Can you raise both of your arms above your head for me, please?" She raises her arms. I say, "Smile, please? Real big?" She smiles okay, both sides work, but she looks sad. I ask her if she's ready to go (meaning, to wherever we're going today), and she unfocuses and starts saying nonsense things again. Juanita gestures that we should pick her up onto the bed. Or get her out into the car. I worry about hurting my mother, or hurting my back, or hurting her /because/ I hurt my back. (I dropped Juanita's father once, moving him between the bed and the wheelchair.)

Next dream. Another strange house, this one a modern design of dark wood and lots of glass but with a painted-black deck for a floor with wide gaps between the wood to the underneath part, but there are rugs everywhere so you can move around and always be on a rug. My mother is here and still not right. Her friend, some random but clearly not demented old woman, comes all the way into the house, down the hallway along the glass wall of the inner garden court, and she's next to the bedroom door. I say to my mother, "You friend is here." My mother jumps up from sitting on the bed, goes right by her friend, not seeing her, and happily run-skips down the long hallway and around the corner. I motion to her friend to follow with me. We find my mother by the double front doors, with the phone in her hand hanging at her side. She says sadly, "They went away." I say, "She's /right here/." My mother says again, "They went away."

Now my mother's friend is sitting, kneeling slighly sideways on the floor, taking things apart with a set of screwdrivers. She works for a bank, and the bank was redecorating and throwing out all these big stainless steel pencil sharpeners that have a music box inside. She's getting the music boxes out and collecting them in a book box. I want her to say, "Do you want some?" so I won't sound greedy to ask first, because I really want them. I help her dismantle pencil sharpeners, and I start having ideas to make a machine out of a bunch of music boxes, synchronize them somehow, power them all with an electric motor-- maybe get a rotisserie motor from... where? I know I have one somewhere; I remember buying one in the thrift store.

My dreams from Tuesday, 2020-05-12

First dream. There's a long slow time of looking down on big maps, from different angles, of the entire Southern U.S. as if from space, but there are houses, so this must be only one city with streets shaped like states. I can't see the state shapes anymore, though that part there is a little like a bilaterally symmetrical Texas shape, a plus-sign and a turnip.

Now I'm in a dim town in what I imagine to be Louisiana. I'm barefoot, in pyjamas, walking across a parking lot between a row of houses and two or three sets of railroad tracks. I sprawl in an outdoor lissajou-pattern-metal-frame web-chair next to a dumpster. A big friendly gangly dog comes near, licks my offered hand. I scratch its neck. It licks my hand again. Women's voices in one of the houses talk about how nice their dog is. I can't see them, but I wave at the house I think they're in to say I agree.

The houses have been replaced by a theater-like space and I go in from the other side. The lobby area is being repaired; the floor and half the floor joists have been removed; it's uneven bare damp dirt. Here are a couple of disintegrating cardboard boxes of wires and cables left over from my various projects. How can I keep them? I can't carry them with me. I tell a strange man about how I don't know how I got here, but I have my phone, and I don't remember emptying my debit card, so I'll probably be okay until I can figure out what's going on. I feel like I'm writing the story I'm in and am about to cheat by just giving myself magical powers to show off and/or teleport home. Or is my car outside? And if so, is this before or after I hit the deer and ruined the impossibly expensive headlight and had to fix it with duct tape and overhead-projector plastic? Things become vague

Next dream. I'm in a big county-fair-like place of tents and marked-off spaces in a grass field in like Ohio --this feels like a fair my cousins took me to in 1973. But it's at the very end of the fair, with nothing left but the grass floor in the empty tents I walk through. I'm with somebody at first, probably Juanita, but that fades. A long slot between tents is an outdoor movie theater. Some happy fat old people sit in lawn chairs by the projector down the hill. There's no sound from the movie playing on the side of the tent at the top of the slot, where a cartoon character dances like a squishy marionette, like Topo Gigio but a pig not a mouse, opening and closing its froglike wide flapping mouth. I start play-yelling NOOOO! in time to whenever it opens its mouth; this is amplified immensely and echoes over the whole fairgrounds. The character speeds up and becomes another kind of animal (?), and then another (a pirate otter? a different pig?) and I keep yelling NOOOO! when its mouth opens. Some Diane-Arbus/Fellini/Walmart-type people gather and they're all yelling along with me. Everyone's having a great time... Or are they? No, they're just sitting on the benches to the side, talking among themselves, smoking cigarets, ignoring me, not even watching the movie. Okay, I'm the only one yelling (and so what? It's a free country): NOOOO! ...NOOOOOO!

— Marco McClean

* * *

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penny-farthing

* * *

HOW THE COVID-19 BAILOUT GAVE WALL STREET A NO-LOSE CASINO

While ordinary Americans face record unemployment and loss, the COVID-19 bailout has saved the very rich

rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/taibbi-covid-19-bailout-wall-street-997342/

31 Comments

  1. Eric Sunswheat May 14, 2020

    May 07, 2020
    In the case of COVID-19, some experts suggest that all patients who are awake and able to adjust their own position should use the prone position for two- to four-hour sessions, two to four times a day. Massachusetts General Hospital also released a prone positioning protocol for nonintubated COVID-19 patients, which states:27

    “… [P]atients admitted with hypoxemia should be encouraged to adopt the prone position where practical and prone positioning may be used as a rescue therapy in patients with escalating oxygen needs.”

    How to Use Prone Positioning at Home

    Some hospitals have also released instructions for self-proning, which can be used at home for people with cough or trouble breathing. If you’re struggling to breathe, you should seek emergency medical care. However, in cases of cough or mild shortness of breath being treated at home, guidelines from Elmhurst Hospital recommend not spending a lot of time lying flat on your back.28,29

    Instead, it suggests “laying [sic] on your stomach and in different positions will help your body to get air into all areas of your lung.” The guidelines recommend changing your position every 30 minutes to two hours, including:

    Lying on your belly
    Lying on your right side
    Sitting up
    Lying on your left side
    https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/05/07/prone-positioning-improves-survival-in-severe-ards.aspx

  2. Craig Stehr May 14, 2020

    Am back at the Plumeria Hostel Alternative enjoying Elysian Brewing Co.’s blood orange pale SUPERFUZZ with a mound of Safeway’s potato salad. Low 70s tonight and lightly cool with the trade winds, plumeria flower scented, gently wafting through the window, and the overhead fan is adding to the comfort.
    Imagine being at Raffles working on creative writing…the panama hats and cocktails, the women dressed to kill, the baccarat players, and behind a curtain the sultan and his entourage playing chemin de fer, a nervous British spy sits cooly at the table (with two Chinese dragon lady hostesses watching the high stakes action at the kidney shaped table). The British licensed assassin asks for another card, which is a deuce, and he shows no expression.
    On Friday, the Hawaiian politicians have approved the retail sector to reopen, with strict guidelines. The other islands have already quietly done so. But this is Honolulu, and particularly south Oahu where I live, and the confusion here which is totally amazing has stretched its authoritarianism as far as is possible. There will be repay, for all of the unnecessary, pointless, counterproductive, stupid, police actions of repression against the homeless, against the Japanese tourists who just wanted to sit on the beach and relax, against the entire population of normal people who went along with this absurd wearing of non-medical “fashion masks” which accomplished nothing whatsoever, stayed six feet apart from everybody else everywhere which accomplished nothing whatsoever, put up with safety glass in front of cashiers which was ridiculous, and then, the HPD fuckin’ raided the bar I was at in Chinatown; peacefully eating a cheeseburger with curly fires and watching the cooking channel competition…okay, so maybe I didn’t have to blurt out “FUCK YOU, DANNO!”, as I exited Downbeat on Hotel Street, while digesting the last swallow of French Absinthe…but what the hell, how much craziness can anybody take? >>>And the entire Oahu retail market place is minimally reopening on Friday May 15th???<<< How much do the bar owners have to pay off the politicians to legally seat everybody again? When is Suzie Wong’s (legally) reopening? When is that edgy skate boarder bar “Proof” legally reopening? How about Bruno Mars’s old hangout 8 Fat Fat 8 (which never removed the take-out only signs from out front)? How about the Maui Brewing Company, Hard Rock Cafe (whose T-shirt I was wearing today), the Honolulu BeerWorks, the Edge Bar behind the Sheraton Waikiki for fish tacos and purple Polynesian sunsets? [ Okay okay, they let me in during the lockdown to get a cocktail-to-go from the Rumfire Club, and sit by the “edge of infinity pool”, chatting with the Japanese tourists…but I made friends with the security guards previously…so, ~MAHALO~ to you, too!.] I mean, where does rationality ever make an appearance in this island chaos of Pineapple Conservatism and the Surfing Blowout Lifestyle?

    Sitting in front of the Microsoft computer, identifying with the Source of the mind, following a day of silently chanting the Krishna mahamantram at Waikiki Beach, not attached to anything at all...so what do you want to do, y'all? Talk to me! 😀

    Craig Louis Stehr
    May 13, 2020
    Email: craiglouisstehr@gmail.com
    Paypal.me/craiglouisstehr
    Blog: http://craiglstehr.blogspot.com
    Snail Mail: P.O. Box 235670, Honolulu, HI 96823-3511
    Never a Phone 😎

  3. James Marmon May 14, 2020

    RE: LAKE REOPENING AND ROB BROWN’S STUPIDITY

    Public Health officials preparing plan to accelerate Lake County’s reopening

    “He said he’s not interested in making masking mandatory when people are out walking, but he said that as people are mixing in the community, they need protections.

    During the meeting Supervisor Rob Brown said he didn’t think mandatory masking was the way to go and that he opposed a “mandatory feel good requirement” that would be selectively enforced. He suggested it could be a good marketing tool and would be enforced by the market.

    Pace said masking is about courtesy and taking care of your neighbor. He said that masking, social distancing and handwashing work to fight the virus.”

    https://www.lakeconews.com/index.php/news/65361-public-health-officials-preparing-plan-to-accelerate-lake-county-s-reopening

    James Marmon
    Mask Maker

    ‘be courteous, protect others’

  4. Betsy Cawn May 14, 2020

    Absent from the discussion of decommissioning Scott Dam, in Lake County, is the impact of its removal on the delivery of continuous flows to either of the competing user groups — Humboldt county’s fisheries restoration promoters and Potter Valley, Mendocino County, Sonoma County domestic and agricultural operations.

    According to the Lake Pillsbury Association, only 3% of the available year-round flows are diverted from the north fork of the Eel river to supply westward flows, and the lake itself has enhanced the natural ecosystem surrounding the basin, which lies within the Mendocino National Forest.

    Lake County pledged the requisite $100,000 to join the Huffman-led Potter Valley Project’s planning group, but was excluded from participating, leaving the county — a long-time member of the Eel-Russian River Commission — up a creek without a paddle.

    As the most pristine wilderness area (adjoining the Snow Mountain – Berryessa conservation jewel of our inland coastal counties) accessible from both Mendocino and Lake Counties, and Lake County’s best outdoor recreation feature, the dam’s removal will return the ecosystem to dependence on unpredictable annual rainfall flows, in a time when anticipated drought conditions have become a common feature of California’s “climate change” trends and heightened risks of catastrophic wildfire.

    As with so many other aspects of Constitutionally-prioritized public health and safety priorities for state and county governments, the romanticizing of upper Eel environmental benefits and downplaying of Russian River enterprise impacts in southern Mendocino and northern Sonoma is heralded as the “Two Basin Solution” when three critical water systems are involved. Abysmal governance all around, and not a word of concern from the California Public Utility Commission or state agencies with vested interests in the third largest natural river in the state.

    The only people who seem to care here in Lake County are the devotees of Lake Pillsbury and the few residents who have “pioneered” their homesteads and remote recreational retreats, with support from our District 3 Supervisor, Ed Crandell. The rest of our Board of Supervisors obviously couldn’t care less.

    • George Hollister May 14, 2020

      Something we too easily forget is Lake Pillsbury is in Lake County. So is the Lake Pillsbury Watershed. The people who own property, pay taxes, and provide for the recreation economy of Lake Pillsbury are doing so to the economic benefit of Lake County.

      Lake County’s uncaring attitude about Lake Pillsbury reminds me of Mendocino County’s uncaring attitude when the US Forest Service shut down resulting in a number of saw mill closures. The subsequent economic devastation we live with, and we act as if it never happened. Yes it did. Places like Covelo, Branscomb, and Alder Point were not always as we see them today. The county property tax money associated with those mills went away, too. Oh, well.

  5. Cotdbigun May 14, 2020

    I’m in awe of Chris Skyhawk’s eloquent description of Maddow.
    Absolutely spot on, thank you Chris.

    • James Marmon May 14, 2020

      Chris Skyhawk for 5th District Supervisor 2022

      James

    • Joe May 14, 2020

      I don’t blame Maddow I blame her handlers for the propaganda machine she participates in. She is just trying to make a buck like a lot of people in this world.

      • Lazarus May 14, 2020

        Maddow was a stand-in/commentator on Keith Olbermann’s MSNBC Countdown show. When he got sacked she took over and according to the rags he and she have not spoken in years, very bad blood.

        She’s a shadow of what Olbermann once was, but Olbermann couldn’t be reeled in by the brass, and in those days cable news was tamer.

        According to Forbes, Fox News beats MSNBC and CNN by a minimum of 7 to 10 million viewers every weeknight. Personally I’m amazed she’s still on the air, the ass in the seat I suppose…
        Be well,
        Laz

      • izzy May 14, 2020

        As with Trump, it’s the public platform and legions of rabid acolytes that make her dangerous.
        If she was talking to herself in a closet, no one would care.

  6. Jim Armstrong May 14, 2020

    I encourage close reading of the output of the “Two-basin Partnership,” an apparently new group that takes its brief from The Friends of the Eel River.
    There is too much BS in it to single any one thing out.
    It is Trumpian.

    • James Marmon May 14, 2020

      RE: THE NEW GREEN DEAL

      Pelosi has the power to shut down both the dam and the tunnel, but she’s looking out for her base and the “industrial wine complex.”

      James

      • Jim Armstrong May 14, 2020

        I don’t think any member of Congress has the administrative power to do any such thing.
        But I will welcome details.

        • George Hollister May 14, 2020

          Jared Huffman has the power, and is using it. That is why Lake County is absent from the table.

  7. Stephen Rosenthal May 14, 2020

    New California sure sounds a lot better than the current Stalag California under our dictator and his henchmen and women. Draconian doesn’t begin to describe their policies and the laws they enact. And I’m not referring solely to COVID-19.

    Hasn’t James Kunstler been eviscerating and exposing the fraud that is Schiff for months? And haven’t a number of self-righteous AVA commenters decried and dismissed Kunstler as a right wing tool? Now they’ll say the Wall Street Journal is one as well. Okay, whatever.

    Rachel Madcow is a talentless (fill in the blank), with as much credibility about her subject matter as an earthworm.

    Pardon me, but I guess I have my cranky pants on today. Or not.

  8. Bill Harper May 14, 2020

    Re “New California”

    You would have to be a special kind of Einstein to separate yourself from all the money to create a new state. L A County pays half of the income tax collected in California, the Fifth largest economy in the world.

    People die trying to get here. California does not tax food or oil production. The sales tax in Arkansas is 10 %, 2% on food. Texas taxes their oil and has brick High Schools with lighted football stadiums.

    Democracy is a difficult full contact sport. If you have not written your representatives then you are not suited up!

    • Stephen Rosenthal May 14, 2020

      “People die trying to get here.” Last time I checked the exodus was far greater than the ingress. What about rent or buying a house? And by the way, California has by far the highest gas taxes in the country. Friends in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Colorado are paying less than $1.70/gallon for 87 octane. What did you pay the last time you filled ‘er up? Or are you one of those electric vehicle wonks?

      • Bill Harper May 14, 2020

        It should be cheap the ruin the planet!

    • George Hollister May 14, 2020

      When it comes to money, the question is what is the price for freedom? Being a slave to urban and suburban voters has it’s own price that can’t be measured in money. Personally, I believe in letting urban-suburbanites have their money, and their mega economy, in exchange for being able to have a representative government that represents rural, and small town California. If this leads to my poverty, so be it.

  9. Stephen Rosenthal May 14, 2020

    “If you have not written your representatives then you are not suited up!“

    Who says I haven’t? Only to receive a formulaic response, when I get one at all.

    • George Hollister May 14, 2020

      That is right, at best they don’t give a twit. At worst, they wonder what I am talking about, and want to “help”.

  10. Bruce McEwen May 14, 2020

    People who insist on telling their dreams are among the horrors of the breakfast table.
    –Max Beerbohm

    • Stephen Rosenthal May 14, 2020

      That is funny, Bruce. I almost lost my lunch – and I never eat lunch.

    • Marco McClean May 14, 2020

      That’s good, then. I don’t eat breakfast. Nor do I insist. I read my own dreams at the very end of Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio, and only if there’s time for it.

      Juanita was tired of my dreams decades ago, but she’s asleep at four a.m. on Saturday morning, or rushing around busy getting ready to go to work, so everything’s copacetic.

  11. Harvey Reading May 14, 2020

    “To me, most fantastic has been the transformation, at least to the libs, of the FBI as pillars of objective integrity.”

    I think you have an odd conception of what “libs” are. Once you get to talking to most of those who, often loudly, claim to be liberal, they turn out to be neolibs at best, and extreme conservatives at worst. In my opinion, hippies, and the yuppies into which many of them matured were about as liberal as Nixon or Reagan or the Clintons or Obama. No one with a drop of liberal blood could ever respect the FBI, except perhaps to recognize that the agency can be good at solving bank robberies, which should be the limit of the agency’s law-enforcement power

  12. Harvey Reading May 14, 2020

    NEW CALIFORNIA?

    LOL. At least they picked a better name than “Jefferson”, though I suspect they have the same nutty mindset.

  13. Gary Smith May 14, 2020

    Huffman said, “You really don’t want one side to get what matters to them without making roughly parallel progress on the other side.”
    This guy is an asshole of the “every opinion is equally valid” variety. Ludicrous statement. Split the baby thinker.

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