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MCT: Saturday, May 30, 2020

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A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM will continue to generate scattered thunderstorms with a potential for locally heavy rain today. A few showers may linger over the interior mountains Sunday through Monday, otherwise dry and warmer weather is expected through mid next week. (NWS)

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TOTAL COMMUNITY SPREAD

Mike Kalantarian writes: I went to Mendo's Covid page this afternoon, curious to see if there was any more info on the last five cases. Not finding that I did, however, notice a new category of data called "Total Community Spread" and the number after it is 3, which seems to correspond to the earlier statement about 3 of the 5 new cases were "still under investigation."

Here's how the new data list looks:

Current COVID-19 Statistics for Mendocino County as of 5/29/2020 at 10 AM:

Total Cases: 30
Total Community Spread: 3
Total Recovered: 12
Total in Isolation: 15
Total Hospitalized at this time: 3
Total Tests: 4397

mendocinocounty.org/community/novel-coronavirus

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OUT OF AN ABUNDANCE OF CAUTION, we are sharing this information with our community. We were recently notified that one of our team members in our North Coast Family Health Center tested positive for COVID-19. However, since there has been very low prevalence of the virus here on the Coast, we proceeded to validate the results. The team member was re-tested twice within a 24-hr period and both results came back negative. As such, experts agree, including those at the state level, that this most likely is a case of a false positive.

Keeping our staff and community’s safety in mind, we are taking all precautions and will proceed with contact tracing and testing. We have notified and are testing staff who may have come in contact with the team member. We have confirmed that the impacted team member did not have contact with any of our patients in the last 14 days performing only telephone and computer duties. The team member also has no symptoms and is at home in isolation.

Since the start of this pandemic, we have taken precautionary measures at the clinic to protect our community, including transitioning some appointments to virtual/phone visits and car side appointments as appropriate. Because of this, physical contact and foot traffic in the clinic has been greatly reduced.

Having said this, we are continuing with our infection prevention practices to protect our staff and community, including: screening all patients and staff for symptoms prior to entry, performing additional cleaning, requiring masks for all patients and adequate wearing of PPE as necessary for staff and social distancing as practical.

“While we do not believe there is a reason to be concerned based on the test results using independent methods, we are still taking these steps out of an abundance of caution to protect our community,” shared Judy Leach, administrator for Mendocino Coast District Hospital which manages the clinic. “We are grateful to our employees who work on the front lines of this health emergency and thank the community for their continued vigilance to do their part to prevent the spread.”

Dr. William Miller, chief of staff, Mendocino Coast District Hospital will continue to provide timely updates here to help keep you updated of our progress.

(From the Mendocino Coast District Hospital Facebook page Friday evening)

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ON SECOND THOUGHT… ON THIRD THOUGHT…

According to the Press Democrat Sheriff Essick has waffled several times on his high profile decision to refuse to enforce Sonoma County’s Shelter In Place order. After changing his mind a few times, as of Friday night, Essick was back to his originally announced position to refuse to enforce the order — at least until he gets more information from the SoCo Health Officer.

pressdemocrat.com/news/10996255-181/sonoma-county-sheriff-reverses-course

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JUDY VALADAO on the San Juan, perhaps more familiarly known as Rex's boat: 

"Has anyone wondered what happened to the engine from the San Juan that sank in Noyo Harbor? Take a look at it now. (photos provided) Roots has begun limited restoration activities following the guidelines established by the Mendocino County Department of Health. It will be awhile before the public is allowed into the Roots facility, but both the County and Roots agree that we need to conduct some essential maintenance and restoration to remain viable. 

We enjoyed another Wednesday work night on the San Juan Estep, trying our best to communicate with masks on, and maintaining our proper distancing as the project would allow. 

Many of the current San Juan Estep projects are detail work, running injector lines, lube lines to the cylinder skirts, miscellaneous plumbing. Previously we filled all the water passages with antifreeze, to slow the effects of salt corrosion. 

We also put Marvel oil in all the cylinders so some lubricating oil would gradually soak the piston rings and cylinder wall. Joey Smith says he wants to get the San Juan Estep operating in 2040, so we are trying not to take short cuts that might cause problems in a future restoration. Joey says he is looking for a wooden boat to put the San Juan Estep in.

Covid can work in strange ways on some people. Visually, the next big step is to get the crankcase covers from the Kinetic Steam Works folks, as the Alameda County Covid health protocols will allow. We have a gauge panel to fabricate, more lube lines on the push-rod side of the engine, and lots more details. 

One of the goals is to finish the San Juan Estep diesel and move it over to the Roots Facility, so we can free up some floor space at Baldo Locomotive Works for the Daniel Best steam tractor. 

We will continue every Wednesday evening. Please bring proper PPE so we can remain safe in our endeavors. 

Chris Baldo, Roots of Motive Power, Willits


In case you don't know, the "San Juan" was a legendary vessel in Noyo Harbor that sunk after being struck by a log during high-water runoff from a storm in February of 2017. The background story is a VERY long one...

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THE HEART OF OUR COMMUNITY ISN’T ANGER — BUT RIGHT NOW, IT’S THE TIP

by Robin Epley repley@advocate-news.com, Editor, Fort Bragg Advocate-News

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how anger is a secondary emotion. That means we use anger to cover up another feeling; sometimes that’s sadness, hurt feelings, fear, disappointment, worries, anxiousness — the list goes on and on.

It’s helpful to think of it as an iceberg, where only a small amount of the emotions we’re feeling are showing. Anger is on the tip, but below, there’s a whole mass of emotions that we’re likely not even aware of.

I mention this because we’ve had a lot of anger directed at us, the newspapers, and at the staff of the high schools in our towns, lately.

In this column two weeks ago, we announced that due to cutbacks at the newspaper, we would be unable to run the nearly 200 photos of graduates at Fort Bragg and Mendocino high schools. But it wasn’t until someone put it up on a local blog last week that the message seemed to permeate.

Unfortunately, it was a message with few of the facts in it — but it sure included a whole lot of anger.

Many seem to think we were doing nothing at all for the graduates, and a few of you have called to tell us what they think of that, in no uncertain terms. But it’s simply not true.

Nor is it true that our staff is lazy, uncaring or unsympathetic to what these students have lost. (One woman said we ought to ignore the community’s news next week in favor of the graduates — which is, frankly, an interesting request to make of a newspaper.)

Like every other business in town, your newspapers have had to make serious cuts to staff and time.

As far as the owners know, I’m on official furlough for the next week — but I’ve made adjustments to stay here through that time, and keep putting the papers out through the graduation season.

From the bottom of my heart, we wish we could run the photos, but it’s simply not possible with the resources that we have right now. Not only am I the only remaining editorial staff in the Advocate-News and Beacon newsrooms, but the paper is actually put designed in Chico, at a Northern California hub — and they’ve lost half of their staff.

What we are doing, we think, is incredibly unique, and will be just as memorable for our graduates.

On June 4, the Advocate-News will be running a large group photo of the graduating class on a special, keepsake front page.

We’re also printing every graduate’s name, their senior quotes and academic accomplishments, a huge spread of candid photos, before-and-after coverage of the — not one, but — two Fort Bragg graduation parades, and four weeks of ongoing articles about all of the various graduation ceremonies, starting this week. All of the senior photos will also be online, in a special gallery.

Then I (just me, alone) will be covering it all over again on June 11, in The Beacon, for the three Mendocino high schools.

We also ran an editorial two weeks ago, asking graduating high schoolers to send me anything they’d like to write into the paper, but as of writing this, we’ve have had zero submissions. That offer is still good, but by the time this hits newsstands, your deadline will be less than 24 hours. If you’re interested, please email editor@advocate-news.com or editor@mendocinobeacon.com by the end of the day, Friday, May 29.

We’ve been working closely with the high schools to create something special for our graduates, and were incredibly saddened to hear they’ve been hearing angry words, too.

Their staff has been working around the clock to create a graduation ceremony under incredibly demanding circumstances, and when that parade comes down Main Street on June 5, it will give our community the hope we’ve been so desperately searching for in this terrifying new world of ours. They deserve our community’s gratitude — not our anger.

None of us started this. None of us want to be in this. We understand the anger comes from a far deeper place, filled with sadness and disappointment for lost celebration, and we desperately want to celebrate the Class of 2020 with you too, and all of the promise for the future that their commencement entails.

But in a world filled with sheer cliffs of uncertainty about that future — please believe right now that we’re all doing the most and the best we possibly can.

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"NEAR THE MOUTH OF FIVE-MILE CREEK, Wyoming"

(photo by Harvey Reading)

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SUMMER ENRICHMENT

On Monday, June 8, from 11 am to 5 pm, the Anderson Valley Education Foundation will be doing a Summer Enrichment Big Give for students of Anderson Valley Elementary School. When the parents come to the elementary school on June 8th, they will find a supply of free age-appropriate summer reading books, art supplies and recreational items (soccer balls, jump ropes, etc.). Parents can select one gift from each category for their students (there will be display tables where parents can look but not touch before choosing the gifts to bring home to their students).

A Summer Enrichment Big Give was also held at the high school for junior high and high school students on June 1. Though the Scholarship program is still on for graduating seniors, the Ed Foundation's usual summer enrichment programs (the Fellowship, Internship, and Summer Camp programs) were cancelled this year due to the coronavirus, and the Summer Enrichment Big Give is the AV Ed Foundation's way of trying to make up just a bit for that loss with some screen-free fun and enrichment options for the summer. AVEF would like to thank Dawn of Hedgehog Books for ordering the books with a generous educational discount. Dawn really supports our students!

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POTTER VALLEY POWER

Editor: 

I’m writing in response to a letter by Norman Vachon regarding the plan to upgrade the Potter Valley Project. The Two-Basin Partnership, which includes public agencies, the Round Valley Indian Tribes and nonprofit California Trout, recently proposed a plan to improve water supply reliability for Sonoma, Mendocino and Marin county farms and residents while improving conditions for fish in the Eel River by making upgrades to the Potter Valley Project. Vachon said he supports the plan, but he lamented the possibility that changes to the project would remove its hydroelectric facilities. While it is possible the partnership’s plan could ultimately reduce the amount of power generated by the project, it wouldn’t eliminate power generation. Indeed, the partnership’s plan counts on power generation as a source of revenue for the ongoing management of the project once the upgrades have been made. 

To learn more about the proposed changes to the Potter Valley Project and how they will benefit Sonoma County residents, go to: www.twobasinsolution.org.

Curtis Knight

Executive Director, California Trout

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PALACE HOTEL, UKIAH, 1920s

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WILL THE CIRCLE BE UNBROKEN?

Thank you for welcoming us to the Mendocino Coast! We are humbled and grateful for your confidence in trusting us to join this exceptional community. We look forward to working with all of you on your healthcare journey, creating even more access to care and building a legacy of health, wholeness and hope. 

We are proud to serve the Mendocino Coast!

To learn more about our commitment to you, visit, AdventistHealth.org/MendocinoCoast

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ED NOTES

NOTING that the MCN chatline seemed even more overrun by vile back and forth comments from the idle insane, I asked a Coast friend why MCN doesn't crackdown. His reply, "State of MCN comments is pure laziness (or busy-ness depending on point of view). They basically have the Facebook attitude: 'That's content. We're techies. Not our problem.' Except they preside over a cesspool now, that's adding to the general freakout."

WHILE SHOPPING in Ukiah the other day, I noted the razor wire atop the fence at the homeless camp at the north end of the Ukiah Airport. Is that to keep them in? The city strategy seems to be fencing them in makes the homeless easier to monitor, what with the homeless day center also in the immediate neighborhood and the Plowshares cafe also a step away across South State Street. These people are valuable funding units for Mendocino County's helping pros who, as we've seen, have steadily resisted getting them permanently settled and the transients among them down the road. Small towns, big cities, everywhere civic paralysis. 

ALSO in Ukiah I noted the long line at the Panda Express takeout window where the Chinese food is the worst in Mendocino County (and the United States) when there's quite a good Chinese restaurant in Willits, another one that at least bears a resemblance to Chinese food in Fort Bragg, and three or four quite good Chinese restaurants in Ukiah. And the long line at Starbucks added to my mystification. Three bucks per?

AS AMERICA CRUMBLES we get this message from the president: "These thugs are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won't let that happen.... Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts."

TRUMP'S a lot cannier than us lib-labs give him credit for being as he again demonstrates in this fuel-on-the-flames tweet to his rabid millions, many of them just itching to start shooting. But Trump first pretends the insurrection dishonors the memory of George Floyd, the fake concern masking the real signal to the fascisti they've got a green light from him to....

TO JOIN the three Minneapolis fat guys posed with what appear to be military style assault weapons above a caption describing them as "Rednecks With Guns." Does it even need to be said that vigilantism is a bad thing, that once it's unleashed (with encouragement from the president of all people) that a lot more people are going to be killed?

VIOLENCE has erupted across the US for a fourth night Friday, with protesters demanding justice over George Floyd's death gathering where Floyd was killed in Minneapolis, his hometown of Houston and in Washington DC. The White House has gone into lockdown Friday night. One protester was detained by Secret Service agents after he tried to scale the walls into the grounds where President Trump — fresh from sparking outrage over his Tweets warning protesters that “when the looting starts the shooting starts” — was secured inside. In Minneapolis, a curfew has ordered people to stay in their homes from 8pm Friday night until 6am Saturday morning. Protests are ramping up in other parts of the country as outraged citizens say that the arrest and charge of one of the cops involved in Floyd's death is not enough and demand the other three on the scene are also charged.


STATEMENT BY THE POLICE OFFICERS OF SAN JOSE, SAN FRANCISCO AND OAKLAND

“What we saw on that video was inconsistent and contrary to everything we have been taught, not just as an academy recruit or a police officer, but as human beings. Reverence for life in every incident a police officer encounters must be the floor and not the ceiling. We cannot see any law enforcement or self-defense rationale for what occurred. We are equally disturbed by not seeing any of the other officers on scene intervene to prevent this tragedy.

What’s depicted in that video is not who we are as law enforcement professionals. We actively train and seek training, to safely manage similar situations we encounter to ensure safe resolutions. On the very same day of Mr. Floyd’s death, there were literally millions of encounters and interactions with public safety professionals throughout our country that were peaceful, respectful, and problem-solving oriented. We will not let the failures shown in this incident tarnish the hard work and sacrifice of those officers who get it right on a daily basis. Our deepest sympathies go out to Mr. Floyd’s family, their pain and grief must be unbearable.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, May 29, 2020

Gonzalez, Gutierrez-Merino, Jimenez

EFRAIN GONZALEZ, Redwood Valley. DUI, no license.

ANDRES GUTIERREZ-MERINO, Santa Rosa/Willits. DUI.

JESSICA JIMENEZ, Domestic abuse, first degree burglary.

Kuntz, Mudrich, Peters, Rios-Avila

FOREST KUNTZ, Garberville/Ukiah. Domestic battery, controlled substance, paraphernalia.

AARON MUDRICH, Disorderly conduct-alcohol, paraphernalia, resisting.

BYRON PETERS, Misdemeanor hit&run, sale/transport organic drug, DUI with priors, county parole violation, 4th or more DUI in last ten years.

CHRISTIAN RIOS-AVILA, Compton/Ukiah. Great bodily injury to 70-plus year old, resisting, prior felony.

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WHAT I HAVE SAID ABOUT HARLEM is true of Chicago, Detroit, Washington, Boston, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and San Francisco—is true of every Northern city with a large Negro population. And the police are simply the hired enemies of this population. They are present to keep the Negro in his place and to protect white business interests, and they have no other function. They are, moreover—even in a country which makes the very grave error of equating ignorance with simplicity—quite stunningly ignorant; and, since they know that they are hated, they are always afraid. One cannot possibly arrive at a more surefire formula for cruelty. 

— James Baldwin, A Report From Occupied Territory

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SOUTH CENTRAL LA: WATTS SUMMER 1965

by Jim Luther

I remember it starting out as a regular monthly weekend drill.

Out of bed Saturday about 4:00 A.M. Search in the closet for my fatigues, combat boots, and patrol cap and put them on. Bump around quietly in the dark so as to not wake Mary and little Betsy, brew a thermos of coffee and go out the front door into the dark morning to drive from our home in Fair Oaks east of Sacramento all the way to our assembly armory, Fort Funston in San Francisco, 120 miles away. A few of us from different parts of northern California had volunteered to drill there instead of at our home armories because we were bored and tired of being cool and because we were promised different training that would be more interesting so we could just make the time go faster, speed it up, get it all done and over with, rid ourselves of our military obligation, and get on with the future adventures of our lives. 

That sweet little red ’61 Volkswagen: Fire her up, head south over the American River onto US 50, connect over to old US 40 (now I-80) head west over the Sacramento River and bring her up to a steady 60-65. “Music ‘til Dawn” going on the car radio, sun coming up behind me, driving past all that early morning northern California country: Valley pastures, fields and low hills all sweeping by, Davis, Vacaville, Fairfield, Vallejo, over the Carquinez Bridge and on, past Berkeley, over the Bay Bridge, then onto 101 and Army Street (now Caesar Chavez) and over to the west side of Lake Merced and up that little hill to Fort Funston. Park in the lot. Alight. Get the gear out. Lock the car. Check in. Fall into formation. 

“Special drill today, men,” says Lieutenant Myers. “We’re going up to Fort Cronkhite and do landing boat drills on the beach.” (Hard for you to believe, I know—me too now—but like I said we’d been promised special training.) So we load up into the deuce-and-a-halves and go north over the Golden Gate Bridge to Fort Cronkhite and actually get out and down onto the beach where it’s hard to chogy in the heavy soft sand, and drag down and launch the big heavy boats with their oars. But just before we actually climb into them, Myers comes running down the beach and yells, “Forget that. There’s been a change. Load back up into the trucks. We’re going back to Fort Funny. 

“And then we’re going to Watts.” 

If we’re surprised, we shouldn’t be. The rioting in Watts has been front page news for two days now. So next we know by that early afternoon we’re standing in solemn formation amongst other company-sized units of troops with guidon flags flapping in the wind on acres of flat grinder at Moffett Naval Air Station awaiting orders to board. Then loading and belting ourselves onto cramped benches shoulder to shoulder along the sides of the long transport planes, lifting off and heading south and landing about two hours later at some Los Angeles area airport, probably Van Nuys, piling out, forming up, loading up into trucks again and being dropped out at some vacant junior high school. Waiting in lines to make our calls, “Honey, I’m in Watts,” spreading our sleeping bags down on the bare floor of a classroom and crashing for the night.

We eat breakfast that morning on trays in the school cafeteria and then go outside and do PT on the playground. One of our guys, Nicholson, who’s really good at sit-ups, gets down and does 100 pretty fast, slowing down only towards the end. He gets up breathing a little hard and shakes himself off. Then Lieutenant Toledo, one of our three Rangers, walks over, says “That was good, Nicholson,” sits down on the asphalt where Nicholson had just done his 100 and cranks out 200 himself, each one fast and crisp, no slowing at the end, gets up, says “We should do that again sometime,” and saunters away, leaving us all kind of shaking our heads. 

Late that afternoon, they actually issue us live ammunition and we go out on the street. Corporal Cirino and I are detailed to guard an intersection on one side of the riot area. We’re supposed to keep people and traffic out of the area. It’s quiet when we get there, absolutely no activity, but it obviously had been violent earlier: Shattered store windows and broken glass all over the streets. The air is acrid and it’s LA August hot. But it stays quiet and gradually gets dark. At some point a car starts to drive into the area. We stop it. Inside are a white couple and their little kid. The woman passenger has a .22 rifle on her lap. She tells Cirino they have friends in the area and are trying to get to them. Cirino tells her politely that the area is temporarily closed and that they can’t go in. He asks her for the .22 and she hesitates and then gives it to him, and they drive away. All the time I’m thinking that I should be clear-thinking and deciding and acting, like Cirino is doing—I’m a sergeant, after all—but I’m having trouble getting my mind to work.

Much later that night, during curfew, a very old black man clutching a brown paper bag shuffles by us on the sidewalk heading south. A police cruiser passing on the other side of the street sets its siren off, so does another right behind it, and then a line of at least a dozen squad cars heading south on the other side of the street have their lights and sirens all going and actually jump the median curb each one right behind the other, flipping U-turns, roaring up and squealing to a stop beside the old man, who has stopped. Five or six officers jump out, yell at him to get up against a wall, and shake him down. About that time Lieutenant Lack and some of our other guys drive up in the three-quarter ton and pick Cirino and me up, and I don’t see what happens to the old man.

Late the next afternoon Cirino and I are assigned to guard a building that has been spray-painted “Burn Baby Burn.” We’re stationed on the roof. It’s quiet the whole time. Nothing happens while we’re there. Later that night we’re relieved and reassigned to foot-patrol in another area. Then we get the word that another liquor store has just been looted and that some dark guys are running our way. We see or are told that they’ve gone off into some bushes and we run after them with our rifles at port arms looking for where they’re hiding. We don’t find them and after a short while we’re called off the chase.

The next night, Lieutenant Lack, a driver and four of us are patrolling around in the three-quarter ton when we get the word to be on the lookout for a described stolen car. A few minutes later Lack from the passenger seat yells out “That looks like it!” and directs our driver into a gas station where a young black man is pumping gas into a late model sedan. We pile out, the four of us surrounding the car, our M-1s at port arms. Lack calls in the license number. He gets a response, we hear him say, “Yep, this is it,” and all four of us level our rifles at the young man and click our safeties off. There’s a girl in the car with terrified eyes. The man’s eyes are smoldering. Then, cocking his head to his radio, Lack says, “Wait a minute,” and pauses, then says, “This isn’t it, it’s some other car.” He turns to the man: “Sorry, buddy.” We all click our safeties back on, raise our rifles to port arms, climb back into the three quarter ton and drive away. Looking back, I see the young black man rage-staring at us.

A night or two later we’re assigned firehouse duty. Rioters have been setting fires and calling them in, and then sniping at the firemen when they respond. So four of us with a jeep are detailed to guard a firehouse and follow the firemen and guard them when they go out on a call. We stay there all night getting called out maybe three, four times. We’ll be sleeping deep and then there’s this massive BLATBLATBLAT noise that physically shakes the building and instantly startles and wakes us all up. The fire captain crouches next to a big radio receiver to get the location and description while the four of us pile into our jeep parked right behind a fire engine, the firemen come out and off we go, following it and its siren and sometimes other screaming fire engines out to the scene where we take up positions on the street with our rifles. I don’t see any fires burning at any of the scenes we drive to; all over the area reports of fires are turning out to be false. And we don’t encounter any snipers.

The next day we’re moved from the school where we’d been staying and billeted at the Sheriff Gene Biscailuz Training Center where we get to sleep on cots set up on an indoor basketball court. That day or the next day we’re assigned to provide perimeter security at the Los Angeles County Courthouse. Big, drab buses, one after the other with many dozens of black faces behind barred windows, keep driving in and later driving out. Small groups of suited young white men—young deputies district attorney, I assume—occasionally step out of the courthouse to stretch, smoke, talk and joke and laugh quietly among themselves while we in our fatigue uniforms, unwashed and smelly after about a week now, stand guard.

The day after we stop guarding the courthouse they keep us at the Biscailuz Center with no duty assignment. By mid-afternoon I’m bored and tired of sitting on my cot with nothing to do. I go out into the sunshine walking aimlessly, finally to a bus stop where I catch a bus going somewhere, probably downtown. I sit in the first row behind and across from the driver, who is black. I’m still in my stinking fatigues. We stop at bus stops where a few people get on and a few people get off. We keep going; more stops, busier streets, more people. More stops, fewer people getting off, more getting on, a few whites, a few blacks. More stops, nobody getting off, more people getting on. More blacks. We keep stopping and going. I’m just sitting there dull, not thinking.

We stop again. The bus driver turns to me and says, “You know, you might want to think about where we’re going. There’s a lot of black faces down there. You know?” 

My mind begins to sharpen a little. A stop later I thank the driver, get off and cross to the bus stop across the street and take the next bus back to the Biscailuz Center.

On the tenth day, we go home. I find out later that, of the 14,000 National Guard troops sent to Watts, the 54 of us who were assigned security duty at the courthouse are the last to leave. Apparently they called us “Task Force Barrena.” I didn’t know it at the time. I still don’t know what it means.

At the Van Nuys National Guard Base late that afternoon we load into a transport plane, and sit down again onto the benches along the sides. There’s plenty of elbow room this time, a lot fewer of us now than there were on the flight out. Between us there’s a jeep strapped down in the middle of the plane, and I watch it during the whole flight to see if it moves; it doesn’t. We land, probably back at Moffett Field again; it’s dark.

They transport us back to Fort Funston. We assemble and then fall out till the next drill. I find my car still there in the lot, get in, it starts, and I drive the three hours back home to Fair Oaks and Mary and little Betsy and our life.

I think that’s all I remember about it.

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COMPTCHE DANCE, 1913

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ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #1

While I find the murder, and that’s what it was, of George Floyd to be reprehensible, and sure hope to see the police officers involved charged with the crime, I find the knee-jerk response of outrage in the black community to be puzzling. Why do they only get upset if a cop or non-black person kills a black person but they don’t seem too bothered by the zillions of blacks killed daily at the hands of other blacks? Nearly all blacks murdered are killed by fellow blacks, not whites, Asians, cops etc. So why only the outrage for what are essentially outlier killings? 

And why does the NYT and its ilk not point this out? And why the tacit approval of the violent protests as you note? 

For that matter, why don’t liberal or MSM refrain from using the “Karen meme” to denote white women? Why is this ok? Would it be ok to use “Latoya” or “LaWanda” or “Latisha” etc as shorthand for black women acting a certain way? I think not. Why is it only ok if it’s applied to white women? And why do liberal publications not see the damage that will occur by their fanning of the flames?

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FORT BRAGG HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION PROCESSION 

On June 5, 2020, at 4:30 p.m., Dana Street will be closed from south of Taubold Court to Chestnut Street to all vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Residents and school staff will still be allowed to access the area. School staff is encouraged to utilize Chestnut Street for access to the Fort Bragg High School grounds. 

Starting at 5:00 p.m., the Fort Bragg Police Department and other first responder agencies will be providing security and traffic control for the Fort Bragg High School Graduation Procession from the South Coastal Trail, Cypress St. entrance, to Fort Bragg High School, Dana St. 

The Graduation Procession will leave the South Coastal Trail entrance at West Cypress Street, and travel northbound onto Main Street. Emergency vehicles will be providing traffic control at all major intersections along the route to allow the procession to move through uninterrupted. Motorists may expect delays of up to ten minutes and are encouraged to utilize Franklin Street if they have time sensitive travel plans. 

The procession will turn right from Main Street onto eastbound East Oak Street and then slow to 5-10 miles per hour. This will allow the graduates’ family and friends the opportunity to safely occupy the sidewalks and yards of residences in order to show their solidarity and support for the Graduating Class of 2020. Westbound traffic on E. Oak Street will remain open during this time; however, motorists should lower their speed and take into account the increased number of pedestrians along the parade route of Oak St. 

The controlled intersections on Oak Street at Franklin Street, Harold Street, Sanderson Way and Dana Street will be closed to North/South traffic during the procession. Motorists may expect delays up to 10-15 minutes; Main Street will be open to North/South traffic once the procession has turned onto East Oak Street, all other intersections will open once the procession clears through each intersection. 

The Graduation Procession will turn from of East Oak Street and onto Dana Street to begin lining up for their graduation ceremony. The ceremony is expected to be broadcasted live both via television/social media and via radio. More details to follow on where and how to watch/hear the ceremony. 

During the procession all vehicle safety codes and traffic laws will still apply. Occupants of vehicles in the procession must wear their seatbelts and are expected to participate in the procession in a safe and courteous manner. 

The Fort Bragg Unified School District and the Fort Bragg Police Department have made the joint decision to not allow any visitors on the school properties of Dana Grey Elementary or Fort Bragg High School during the ceremony. The previously described areas of Dana Street and Chestnut Street east of Dana Street, as well as the John Deidrick Center will also be closed to the public. This was not an easy decision, but was necessary in order to allow this ceremony to happen considering the current restrictions related to the Shelter in Place Order (SIP). We encourage our community in supporting the 2020 Fort Bragg High School Graduates along the procession route by decorating their yards, holding banners, and simply being present during this unique graduation ceremony. 

Concerns or questions regarding this year’s procession route, traffic control, or road closures may be forwarded to Sergeant O’Neal at (707) 961-2800 ext. 120 or to toneal@fortbragg.com. 

* * *

UKIAH HORSELESS CARRIAGE, 1916

* * *

THE CORRUPT BARGAIN

by Eric Foner

Every four years Americans wake up to the fact that a president can be elected despite receiving fewer votes than another candidate. Until 2000 the electorate couldn't be blamed for being unaware of this possibility, because it hadn't happened since 1888. But twenty years ago George W. Bush squeaked into office with a five vote majority in the electoral college even though Al Gore outpolled him by half a million votes. Then in 2016 Hillary Clinton received nearly three million more votes than Donald Trump but still lost by a substantial margin – 304 to 227 – among the electors. Ask a man or woman in the street why this system of electing a president was adopted and how it works and you will almost certainly draw a blank. It's complicated, but the main point to bear in mind is that the president is elected indirectly. To be sure, on election day Americans think they're casting a ballot for their preferred candidate. But, technically, what they're doing is voting for electors pledged to support that candidate. The electors vote a month or so later and in almost all cases cast their ballots for the candidate who carried their state. No matter who won the national popular vote, they have the final say.

The United States prides itself on providing a global model of democratic government. But of the nearly 200 sovereign states that make up the United Nations it is difficult to think of a single one that elects its chief executive as Americans do. Even countries with constitutions explicitly modelled on the US one have not thought the electoral college worthy of emulation. Liberia, established as a settlement for manumitted slaves, closely followed the American example, but opted for direct election of the president “by the people.” The post-World War Two constitutions of West Germany and Japan, their drafting strongly influenced by the American occupying authorities, did not adopt the system. The electoral college (an odd name for an institution whose members only assemble once every four years, in the fifty state capitals) certainly makes the US exceptional.

How the president should be elected was one of the most divisive issues to confront the constitutional convention of 1787. The delegates agreed that the new nation must be a republic, which ruled out a hereditary head of state. Some favored selection by the legislature, the method used in parliamentary systems, but others feared this would make the president dependent on Congress. The most democratic option, of course, was election by the people (or at least the minority of the population eligible to vote in each state, generally white men with property), but most of the framers believed that unrestrained democracy was as dangerous as tyranny. Placing prominent men of “discernment” between the electorate and the final outcome, Alexander Hamilton insisted, would hold popular passions in check and prevent a demagogue, perhaps beholden to a foreign government, rising to power. James Madison had a more self-interested objection to popular election. The political power of the South, where slaves made up 40% or more of the population, had hugely increased, thanks to a clause adding three-fifths of the slave population to the number of free inhabitants when allocating on the basis of population the seats given to each state in the House of Representatives. Since the slave population would have no impact on the outcome, warned Madison, a Virginia slaveowner, a popular vote for president would deprive the South of “influence in the election on the score of the Negroes.”

The electoral college system was adopted shortly before the convention's deliberations ended, and has remained almost unchanged ever since. Each state was given the right to choose electors by a method it determined (which ended up meaning either selection by the state legislature, or by popular vote). The number of electors in each state was equivalent to that state's delegation in Congress – two senators plus however many members it had in the House of Representatives. The candidate who received a majority of the electoral vote would become president and the candidate who came second would become vice president. If no one won a majority, the House, with each state casting one vote, would select the president from among the top finishers. Thus, the electoral college imported into the election of the president two undemocratic features from elsewhere in the constitution – the allocation of two senators to each state regardless of population and the three-fifths clause – and added a third, the provision that in the event of a final election by the House, each state, large or small, would have the same influence on the outcome.

The constitution's framers neither anticipated nor desired the rise of political parties, which they saw as divisive institutions that elevated factional interests above the common good. But parties quickly emerged anyway, and caused havoc in the electoral system. Ever since, instead of men of local prominence and independent judgment, each party has nominated as candidates for elector minor functionaries who can be relied on to vote for their chosen presidential candidates. The electors are not supposed to think for themselves. Not one voter in a thousand can name any of them past or present.

* * *

CASPAR SCHOOLHOUSE

* * *

ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #2

“Why do they only get upset if a cop or non-black person kills a black person but they don’t seem too bothered by the zillions of blacks killed daily at the hands of other blacks? Nearly all blacks murdered are killed by fellow blacks, not whites, Asians, cops etc. So why only the outrage for what are essentially outlier killings?” I would suggest that people take someone being killed by a police officer rather differently than they do a killing by another citizen, whatever that citizen’s race. With great power comes great responsibility, as they say, and police are entrusted with the power to take life as part of their job. The issue is that many, many people perceive the police to be misusing that power, and that the misuse is targeted by race. That’s why comparing it against ‘black-on-black crime’ feels like a false dichotomy.

* * *

OMINOUS CONVERGENCE

by James Kunstler

And so, with the unjust killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, the quest for cosmic justice resumes — that is, the justice that settles all the scores of racial grievance for all time, which, of course, is unlikely to be satisfied by any means. Mr. Floyd was killed by police officer Derek Chauvin who knelt on Mr. Floyd’s neck for eight minutes with the full force of his weight while three other officers stupidly stood by watching and failed to intervene until Mr. Floyd was dead.

This time, there was no ambiguity in the killing, unlike the 2014 shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, that sparked a season of riots. Video from a bystander’s phone shows Officer Chauvin stupidly killing Mr. Floyd. The four policemen have reportedly been fired (NBC News), but no one has been charged yet. Three days of protests and nighttime riots have commenced in that city and are now spreading to cities around the country. With Memorial Day in the rearview mirror, you might say, as the old song goes, that summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the streets.

It appears that the Progressive Left is all for letting it rip. Their chief signaling device, The New York Times, ran this headline today: “National Guard Called as Minneapolis Erupts in Solidarity for George Floyd.”

That sounds to me a bit like a stamp-of-approval for a lawlessly violent response to an act of official stupidity. Is The Times in solidarity with the mayhem? Which raises some questions: how much rioting, looting, and arson will be enough to satisfy that sense of solidarity in the quest for justice? Three nights? Three weeks? Three months? Will it cease if and when Officer Chauvin is charged with murder or manslaughter? How much rioting, looting, and arson will the authorities in other cities allow to rip before they move to forcefully stop it? Does all this disorder amplify itself in a feedback loop as it plays out?

Those would be tough questions in ordinary times, but we’re in an extraordinary convergence of crises that includes an unresolved Covid-19 pandemic, an unprecedented economic collapse, and the furious after-effects of a failed political coup that steeped the nation in delusion, institutional breakdown, and factional enmity. Black America is not the only group in the land that has an axe to grind.

For instance, with over 30-million suddenly unemployed, facing bankruptcy one way or another, maybe even eviction and hunger, and tens of thousands of small businesses failing, what will be the public mood if the stock markets keep shooting up and up and up, as they’ve been doing for a month? Those rising share values, which enrich a tiny percentage of the public, are a direct result of the Federal Reserve inflating the national debt by “printing” money-from-thin-air. It comes in the form of bonds, the interest on which ultimately has to be paid by taxpayers. Many will not fail to notice that it smells like a scam. Will the economically floundering public revolt against it? Will they take to the streets and start burning down things other than police stations and AutoZones?

Could all that intersect with black street violence in cities across the land? A hint was suggested in cable TV video of rioters on the streets in Minneapolis hoisting a sign that said “kill all white people!” The Progressive Left has indulged and excused sentiments like that for years. (Remember New York Times editorial board hire, Sarah Jeong, tweeting “#CancelWhitePeople” and “dumbass fucking white people”?) What if those maledictions are acted out? Does the Left, including the Democratic Party, want to ignite a race war in America on top of a second great depression in a plague year?

Once cycles of violence are set in motion, they are very difficult to stop. The animosities between different groups in the USA are not so different in character from what’s been seen in other places around the world in recent times: the strife in Northern Ireland, the breakup of Yugoslavia, the civil war in Lebanon, the factional fighting in Libya, Syria, Iraq. All of them grew out of quests for cosmic justice, and all of those conflicts produced lasting damage to the societies they inflamed.

Donald Trump may appear poorly suited to presiding over such a national crackup. Many will accuse him of instigating it. Whatever he does is liable to be construed as wrong by half the nation, whether he acts decisively to put down actual insurrection, or dithers inconclusively while cities burn. His Democratic rival, Joe Biden, appears even less credibly capable of managing a crisis. He is, in fact, a Potemkin candidate for president, a stalking horse for forces and persons mysteriously awaiting emergence in Milwaukee around mid-August. It looks like some people will have to start deciding some things.

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page.)

* * *

ALBION NEW CASH STORE, 1905

* * *

ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #3

As a baby boomer, I can’t remember a worse time; a comic-tragic, wheels coming off the economy farce unfolding more and more each day. Any faith/trust I had in institutions, religion, government has been wiped out in the last few years, everything seems like a power abusing scam…In the coming elections, (if there is an election) I am at a loss on who to vote for-an orange faced, divisive, self-centered, lying oompa loompa, or a lying, plagiarizing, grifter that has no legitimacy as a candidate. Do I “waste” my vote on a third party candidate that seems decent, or pick the lesser of two evils? (at this point I can’t discern which one it is) But in consolation, at least now we have a SPACE FORCE to save the day.

* * *

NOW HIRING PART-TIME CONTROLLER

From: "Community Foundation of Mendocino County" <info@communityfound.org>

Join our team! Join our team! Hiring Part-time Controller May 29, 2020 We are looking for a part-time controller to join our team! The Community Foundation of Mendocino County is a non-profit organization that serves donors and local communities by establishing long-term philanthropic funds for the benefit of non-profit organizations and scholarship recipients in the county. The Foundation has over 130 component funds, each with its own set of investment/grant-making guidelines and objectives. The Foundation has assets of approximately 35 million dollars and an annual grant-making budget of one to two million. Strong fiduciary practices are paramount to the Foundation’s mission and operations. We are seeking a Controller who will define the processes and implement the infrastructure/systems needed to support the ongoing growth of the Foundation. S/he will continue to build and manage effective and streamlined administrative/financial systems, including financial, accounting, legal, information technology (IT), human resources (HR), and physical infrastructure. The Community Foundation uses Foundant Technologies Community Suite which integrates general ledger, accounts payable, grant-making and gift management for all component funds. To read the complete job description: Part-Time Controller Job Description To apply by June 30 send resume, salary requirements, and cover letter to: 

Megan Barber Allende, CEO 

megan@communityfound.org 

204 South Oak Street, 

Ukiah, CA 95482

* * *

UKIAH HIGH MILK CLUB, 1930s

* * *

MEMO OF THE AIR: GOOD NIGHT RADIO SHOW RE-RUN Saturday Night, if even that.

I hurt my back moving heavy things a few days ago and it's one of those things that gets worse before it gets better. I'm stuck flat on my back in bed now at Juanita's (she's deep-sleep-breathing next to me, having been up all night on her own project and then all day at her day job). With great difficulty and squeal-swears of pain I can get into the chair and sit at the computer for a few minutes -- I tried that -- but there's no way I can do the show tonight.

I put a call in to Jerry to rerun last week's show or another earlier show, but it ain't the end of the world if it just falls back on the automation. KNYO's music bin is top-notch. So whatever happens happens; it's out of my hands and in imaginary hands in the sky now.

This will be the first airdate I've missed in 23 years, since I started Memo of the Air on KMFB in February of 1997. Tch.

I'm sure to be back at it next Friday. Send your writing -- poetry, schoolwork, a chapter of your novel, conspiracy theory, creative kvetch or gripe or snipe, or all seven -- in the body of a regular email, and I'll read it on the radio then, sixth fifth of June, between 9pm and 5am on 107.7fm KNYO-LP Fort Bragg and 105.5fm KMEC-LP Ukiah, as well as knyo.org and kmecradio.org.

And there are still literally jillions of arguably educational amusements you haven't poked at yet in https://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com so there's that, too, or rather those are there. Free.

Cripes it is a bitch to compose on a phone. I can see why nobody uses complete sentences anymore and why people think it's weird when you post more than five words.

Marco McClean, memo@mcn.org, https://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com

* * *

FOUND OBJECT

* * *

QUANDARY FOR HIGH FLYERS: HOW TO TRAVEL SAFELY TO YOUR YACHT

It’s a modern quandary for the ultra-wealthy: a yacht awaits at harbor, but how to safely reach it without risking contact with the Covid-exposed masses?

bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-05-22/dilemma-for-high-flyers-how-to-travel-safely-to-your-yacht

14 Comments

  1. George Hollister May 30, 2020

    Harv, there is a special driver’s seat for crusaders waiting for you on that urban poor carrousel. But forget about anyone grabbing the brass ring. The only chance for that is to get off.

    • Harvey Reading May 30, 2020

      Tell it to Heritage. They’ll give you a nice pat on the head, then snigger uncontrollably after you have left the room.

  2. James Marmon May 30, 2020

    RE: SO CALLED PROTESTERS (aka Anarchists)

    Where is the outrage regarding this virus that leaked out of China to kill thousands world wide, destroying families, economies? One man dies accidentally and the country goes insane. Does anyone actually believed this cop sat out that morning to go kill himself a black man in broad daylight in front of witnesses? If Floyd was spitting on them they had the right to defend themselves, post covid-19.

    James

  3. George Hollister May 30, 2020

    The parts of the narrative are in a circle where there is no #1. Liberal and conservative racism; high urban black on black violence; drug gangs; police brutality; riots; the welfare system, and government help that fosters broken families; poor quality schools; and joblessness. Where do we start? If you don’t live there, maybe the best way to start is to step back. This circular narrative has been with us for the last 50 years, and nothing has changed for the better.

    • Harvey Reading May 30, 2020

      Ha, ha, George. Makin’ excuses for yourself, as usual, while attempting to appear wise and knowledgeable as you do so. Once again, you fail. Everyone knows by now, that you are just another racist conservative, one who has failed to master the lingo of conservative code language to attempt to hide it. You as much as admitted it a few days ago, right here!

  4. Harvey Reading May 30, 2020

    ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #2

    Typical conservative, racist misdirection. I picture the commenter on his high horse, pontificating piously to us lesser beings.

  5. Harvey Reading May 30, 2020

    ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #1

    Utter BS. When people have been been treated horrendously for centuries, when they know that they are targets of racist cops, when they know they will always get the short end of the stick every time, they finally explode in rage. Even stupid, racist, conservative whites with their tiny brains should be able to perceive that much

  6. Harvey Reading May 30, 2020

    STATEMENT BY THE POLICE OFFICERS OF SAN JOSE, SAN FRANCISCO AND OAKLAND

    Good for them. Excellent.

  7. Harvey Reading May 30, 2020

    “TO JOIN the three Minneapolis fat guys…”

    And people are gonna be shooting back, too. Brainless, racist conservatives are not the only ones adept at using pop guns. The left shoots just as well (probably better) as the right, though they are far less suffused with the almost religious mysticism associated with firearms. From my experience at shooting ranges, most of the conservative blowhards did well to hit the backstop, let alone the target, doubly so for those shooting handguns, especially the ones with high-capacity magazines, you know, the handguns that look “oh, so cool”…and that make conservatives feel “manly”.

    In the end, the failed experiment of the U.S. will be concluded. If humans survive at all, their numbers in North America are likely not to exceed about 50 million, roughly the same level as its original human inhabitants, before the white trash from Europe invaded.

  8. Lazarus May 30, 2020

    FOUND OBJECT

    Tag em and bag em…

    Be well,
    Laz

  9. Eric Sunswheat May 30, 2020

    RE: TOTAL COMMUNITY SPREAD… OUT OF AN ABUNDANCE OF CAUTION

    ———->. May 29, 2020
    A few viral particles cannot make you sick — the immune system would vanquish the intruders before they could. But how much virus is needed for an infection to take root? What is the minimum effective dose?
    A precise answer is impossible, because it’s difficult to capture the moment of infection…

    And coronavirus patients are most infectious two to three days before symptoms begin, less so after the illness really hits… A higher dose is clearly worse, though, and that may explain why some young health care workers have fallen victim even though the virus usually targets older people…

    People may take in virus by touching a contaminated surface and then putting their hands on their nose or mouth. But “this isn’t thought to be the main way the virus spreads,” according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention…
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/29/health/coronavirus-transmission-dose.html

    May 16, 2020
    Not all N95 respirator masks are created equal.
    In fact, you may unknowingly be wearing one that does more harm than good when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19.
    That was the warning the San Francisco Department of Public Health sent via Twitter last week.
    It said, in part, “the ones with the valves or openings on the front are NOT safe, and may actually propel your germs further.”
    https://www.healthline.com/health-news/certain-type-n95-mask-harm-covid19-spread

  10. Marco McClean May 30, 2020

    Correction: Rerun of last week’s MOTA radio show playing now, Friday night. And next Friday night is the 5th of June, not the 6th. My bad, sorry, thanks.

  11. Craig Stehr May 30, 2020

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