Off the Record (June 17, 2020)

MOST OF TUESDAY’S BOARD of Supervisors meeting involved a lot of self-congratulation, some of it may even have been deserved. But if doing your well-paid job can be considered trophy-worthy, the meeting was for you. There was lots of detailed discussion of the what if variety prompted by the latest health officer’s order and the presence of Dr. Doohan herself speaking from the Supes chamber. The budget discussion was heavy on department heads reading from their prepared budget presentations. Sheriff Kendall went on at uncharacteristic length, seemingly to convince the Board — unnecessarily it appeared — not to cut his budget. An organized letter writer campaign against cutting some $75k from the County’s Fire Safe Council prompted discussion and by the end of the day there was talk of restoring some of the Fire Safe Council’s budget. Auditor Lloyd Weer said that due to virus-related decreases in retail sales and bed taxes, the County will see a revenue reduction for this fiscal year (ending this month) of around $2 million, a rather ominous cut given the level of criminality in the county. Budget Officer Darcie Antle said FEMA, by the end of June, is expected to reimburse 75% of the $6 mil that will have been spent on Covid responses. (Motel rooms for around 250 homeless people, which runs out at the end of June, free meal programs for low-income seniors and the Emergency Operations Center being the largest expenses). The state is expected to reimburse 75% of the remainder, leaving maybe $300k to $400k for the County to absorb. CEO Angelo said the impact of the revenue reductions and additional expenses would be minor because the county has kept a lot of funded positions vacant and accumulated reserves are available to pay off the rest. Supervisor Williams requested that the Sheriff’s overtime budget should be more than zero. The Board seemed to think that a comprehensive review of the County’s thousand or so outside contracts is overdue for a review with several Supervisors expressing concern that there may be overlaps or duplications across departments. Other questions involved the Sonoma County Emergency Services Admin cost, and travel costs. The Cannabis program discussion had to be postponed because the board ran out of discussion time by early evening.

AT THE END OF THE DAY, Supervisor McCowen made the controversial suggestion of cutting some of the Prop 172  fire funding allocation in light of the new money for fires services expected to be realized from the newly passed bed tax on private campgrounds. This of course would be a betrayal of the advisory measure which accompanied the campground tax and sold on the basis that the money would not be taken away from somewhere else. Supervisor Haschak rightly pointed out that he disagreed with McCowen because it would look like a typical government switcheroo. Supervisor Williams added, “It might also be fatal.” Supervisor Dan Gjerde suggested an ad hoc committee on the subject. No motion; no vote taken.

(Mark Scaramella)

LOTS OF CHATTER today on Mendo social media about changing the name of Fort Bragg to something less martial, something more acceptable to locals who seem to think history's more sanguine events can be erased by euphemizing them out of existence and if all of us think happy thoughts. Thinking about it, the version of American history that geezers of my age were force fed began with the Indians welcoming the Pilgrims, moved on through noble pioneers fighting their way through the Plains Indians to settle California, the Gold Rush that created San Francisco, World War Two where we beat back bad men with funny mustaches, technical progress a bunch, freeways, with the rest of the world consisting of funny-looking people in even funnier costumes. It was up to us and John Wayne to rule these menacing hordes for their own good! 

I GOT MYSELF a vivid awakening that the history of our country wasn't as dull as I'd been taught when, as a bored high school kid, I somehow found my way to John Dos Passos' USA Trilogy, probably from a collection of forbidden books locked in a glass case in the school library. Students required a note from home to read any of these dangerous tracts so, natch, the curious got the note and began reading mostly, as I dimly recall, crank lit of the vegetarian-pacifist genre, but also including the above and the genuinely exciting and thrillingly subversive Johnny Got His Gun which, for a spell, had been formally banned in the United States. And from the banned book locker  I discovered much about the land of my birth that young minds were then sheltered from. Our history is what it is. I think the latter-day attempts to re-write the record as all white killers and black and brown victims are as dangerously false as the blandly untrue version I got as a kid. Look the record in its face, Americans! I mean really, where would you rather live, bleeping Denmark?

AS FOR FORT BRAGG, and the rest of Mendocino County, well no way to sugar coat the fact that lovely Mendo’s beginnings — the years 1840-60 especially — were characterized by wholesale murder, slavery, rape, and theft,  a straight-up criminal enterprise. But Fort Bragg was in fact founded to protect the victims of the first white-native interface, not that it was successful but, as the historical re-write likes to insist, our intentions were good. Get yourself a copy of “Genocide and Vendetta” for the true story of Mendocino County’s founders.

(JUST PRIOR to the outbreak of the Civil War, Covelo and much of the Eel River Basin was so rife with Confederate sympathizers they’d secretly organized themselves as a militia to both murder Indians and, when the war kicked off, grab Covelo and much of inland Mendo and Humboldt for the grand cause of slavery. Lincoln sent soldiers to ensure that these fine fellows were unable to make their move, but wasn’t able to prevent the near-annihilation of native peoples. A few years later, Mendo-based political figures got a state law passed that permitted white ranchers to “indenture” Indians for periods of up to 15 years. Is a kid better off not knowing this stuff, or is he more likely to be instructed and inclined not to allow injustice when he meets it?)

ON THE SUBJECT of name changes, former supervisor Norman de Vall, writes: “If you send a letter to Noyo 95437 for any Ft. Bragg address it gets where you want it to go. Same for Westport 95437. Caspar has its own zip code: 95420. The Town of Mendocino morphed into the Village of Mendocino. The town of Little Lake became Willits. Why not start using: Noyo 95437?”

MONDAY EVENING about 7:30, a 911 caller reported "50 to 100" shots fired in Covelo in the area of Crawford Road and Biggar Lane. Sheriff's deputies and tribal police sped to the scene where, according to Sheriff Kendall, they found “a large-scale marijuana grow with numerous hoop houses.” A couple of fun-loving pot planters were briefly detained but, as the Sheriff put it, “no bodies and no blood.” An investigation is ongoing.

A READER COMMENTS: "Hah, three different firearms. Sounded like a war zone. But maybe it was just a celebratory burst to kick off the festivities now that Sheriff’s Deputy Trent James is leaving. He has had enough. Not enough real support, a job that must be just delightful, and then he gets accused by a certain segment (I name no names) of “harassment” when he does horrible, brutal things like recover stolen goods from the perps by going to see them and saying okay, guys, c’mon – just hand the stuff over. Tsk, tsk! This song certainly sounds familiar, doesn’t it? He was smart, he was effective and he was chill. He possessed integrity and was dedicated to helping the community. For a law enforcement officer, that can get you in deep water here, it would seem. Jesus Christ. Talk about the Village of the Damned. Well, shit. I get it, Trent. You do what you have to do, man. And you will be missed. As for Round Valley – oh, hey, it’s time to par-TAY! Are you listening, Sheriff Kendall?"

I'M SURE the Sheriff is listening. He's a native of Covelo and, I daresay, as unhappy as the next Covelo resident with the criminal takeover of the area. One small example of what Covelo people are living with is Negie Fallis, the one and only suspect in the kidnapping and likely murder of Khadijah Britton. 

Negie Fallis

The guy should have been suppressed years ago, but here he is out of jail again after a conviction on matters unrelated to Ms. Britton, driving around Covelo with a gun and a crack pipe like he was mayor. There are way too many unreconstructed felons in the Covelo area; factor in the green rush crooks also infesting Round Valley and, well, good luck, Covelo. Keep your guns handy.

THE PUBLIC CONVERSATION grows ever more bizarre, led of course by our president, who has repeated, via his wacky new press secretary, the preposterous claim that Martin Gugino, 75, gratuitously knocked down by Buffalo police and subsequently hospitalized, was an Antifa plant. Antifa is rapidly becoming the rightwing's latest unfounded fear. (Communists when I was a kid, then hippies, now a handful of neo-commies called Antifa.) Surprising so much paranoia can penetrate the fact-proofed skulls of the magas. Jesu Cristo, even Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal says that fantastic rumors claiming that Antifa was hitting the road to disturb the rustic slumber of Humboldt County, among other of Antifa's unsuspecting destinations, is fact. Honsal: “We did have reports — substantiated, law enforcement reports — that said antifa did have people in buses that were in southern Oregon and in the Central Valley … These aren’t unsubstantiated stories. This is the reality, and we have to deal with that.”

ANOTHER TRUMP genius, Merritt Corrigan, appointed to run the Foreign Aid Agency, said the United States is being menaced by the "homosexual agenda," and is rapidly becoming a "homo empire."

HBO has announced that because Gone With the Wind "glorifies the antebellum south," HBO is not offering the film until HBO can provide "historical context."

A UCLA professor of accounting has been suspended because he refused a request from non-black students to lower grading standards for black students because of the “trauma” black students have suffered from George Floyd’s death and the ensuing civil unrest.

THE POPULAR television program Cops has been cancelled after 33 years on the air, although it's highly popular among prison inmates of all ethnicities who view it as a comedy show. (I once asked then-Sheriff Tony Craver when Mendo deputies would appear on Cops. He replied, "Never! I can't believe the stuff they show on there.”)

I WONDER how long the black guy on the Cream of Wheat box will last? The prob with him is that he was a real person, Frank L. White, long gone but the subject of at least one biography and very proud of his fame. The Washington Redskins football team? Still hanging on, but in the closely watched sports context of today? Soon to join Chief Knock-A-Homa of the Atlanta Braves in the Racist Hall of Shame. (Braves? Soon to be relegated to the same dustbin as Knock-A-Homa who, sports fans will remember, emerged from a teepee in deep center to perform a "war dance" every time a Brave hit a home run.)

THE LOCAL ANGLE: From the 1930s until 1972, the chief of the Yurok tribe, Timm Williams, was the Stanford Indian, togged out as a Plains Indian as he rode around the football field as a pre-game visual. Williams was finally convinced by Native American students to give it up.

TRUMP TWEETED LATE WEDNESDAY: "Radical Left Governor [of Washington], Jay Inslee and the Mayor of Seattle are being taunted and played at a level that our great Country has never seen before. Take back your city NOW. If you don't do it, I will. This is not a game. These ugly Anarchists must be stooped [sic] IMMEDIATELY. MOVE FAST! Domestic Terrorists have taken over Seattle, run by Radical Left Democrats, of course. LAW & ORDER!"

NEVER SEEN BEFORE? As far back as the Whiskey Rebellion, not to mention the Boston Tea Party, we've seen American rebellions from the grand to the miniscule like this one. Aggrieved Americans have often declared themselves independent of existing authority. Closer to our NorCal home we've seen the State of Jefferson rebellion of November, 1941, when a group of armed men blockaded Route 99 near Yreka to declare independence from Oregon and California. Their inspiration was, they said, the under-representation of the contiguous rural areas of both states. 

THE BOONVILLE WEEKLY has long predicted that Orange Man won't go peacefully. His increasingly hysterical tweets have inflamed his "base" to actively resist Trump's removal regardless of the November election result. Even Joe Biden is “absolutely convinced” that the military might have to eject Trump from the White House if he refuses to leave. Interviewed on the Daily Show yesterday last week, Biden said, “This president is going to try to steal this election. It’s my greatest concern. My single greatest concern… I promise you, I’m absolutely convinced they [the American military] will escort him from the White House with great dispatch.”

THE ONGOING DEBATE about the daily exchanges of rancid insults on the MCN chat line, David Gurney's reminder ought to apply: "Since the list is operated by the Mendocino School District, and "hate speech" (def. "abusive or threatening speech or writing that expresses prejudice against a particular group, especially on the basis of race, religion, or sexual orientation") is expressly prohibited anywhere in the public school system (and indeed anywhere in the US) the list operators should have no problem eliminating such language and its perpetrators from their listserve."

GURNEY'S REMINDER was inspired by this statement from an MCN subscriber: "Clearly this is a segregated community here since no person of color or non-heterosexual person can be on the list without being called the N or F word. We all need to acknowledge that this is a racist, bigoted “community” listserve since it’s not an okay place for everyone in the community to be unless they are white & hetero."

MAIGRET'S ROOM, a book review by John Lanchester in the current LRB: “There is plenty of sex in the books, but it all has to do with the other characters, usually the relevant criminal perpetrators: Maigret is passionately uxorious, but the passion is expressed through culinary rather than sexual appetite. In this respect, the inspector was very unlike the man who created him. Simenon famously claimed to have had sex with 10,000 women, and was equally famously corrected by his estranged second wife, who claimed the real figure was 1200. She had good data. When they lived in the US, Denise and Georges would go to brothels together; she liked chatting to the girls in the lobby while he was upstairs having sex with one of them. When he'd finished he would come down, and she was having a good time she would say: ‘Why not have another one, Jo?’ Which must rank as one of the strangest sentences ever spoken in the history of marriage.”

CHARLIE ENGEL WRITES: “The History of Fort Bragg: If we are going to tout the history of Fort Bragg, it should be noted that our town was recognized for being home to the most bars and whore houses, per capita, of any town in the United States. Fort Bragg was at least a front runner for that dubious title. 

Is there a reason for the descendants of the loggers to be proud of the work their ancestors did? What we have today is the end result. Where is the nearest old growth redwood and how many of us have contemplated the scope and irreplaceable natural beauty that was lost. What is there to be proud of when you can't see a single old growth redwood near the towns of Fort Bragg and Mendocino? A high percentage of that wood went to Asia and San Francisco. We know what happened to the majority of redwood that was used to build San Francisco. How many old growth redwoods were cut down within the city limits? Imagine the lack of vision that allowed this to happen! 

History clearly indicates that political qualifications and discernment have been lacking in Fort Bragg. There isn't a shortage of people that have lived here longer than others. One needn't look far to see what good that has done. When someone doesn't have anything else to offer they will regurgitate the line: 'I've lived here longer than you so I know what is best for the community'. It would be enlightening to hear more from such people. Perhaps we would hear a few stories about the 'good old days' when there were more bars and brothels and fewer 'out of towners'. When the dust settles, there was nothing like cutting down one of those made for profit old growth redwood trees! What can we destroy next? Why isn't the fishing industry sustainable? Is it a surprise?"

WITHOUT ARGUMENT, the supervisors have handed Doc Doohan a hundred grand bonus. Why? Doohan did nothing but relay a tailored version of the governor's statewide covid strategies and did it from her home in San Diego. Any local person with a medical degree could have done what Doohan has done, Dr. Drew Colfax, for example, a local guy born and bred whose daily reports on KZYX Radio are probably the only medical advisories much of anyone around here pays any attention to.

SUPERVISOR JOHN MCCOWEN on Wednesday explaining why he voted against Dr. Doohan’s $100k contract extension.

“We have now been through Version 9 of the health officer’s order. We have had the previous eight versions and some of them, many of them, involved extensive wordsmithing, so there has been a constant revision of the order and if you want cost savings -- a tremendous amount of time both by the health officer and by a County Counsel and two of his deputies revising these health orders and preparing the frequently asked questions which are then invalidated as soon as the next order comes out, so it has been a constant writing and rewriting of the order. I believe we could have had the same substance brought forward for the most part if we simply said our order is in line with the state’s, what the governor allows to open we allow to open. Then, here are these few additional considerations that we want to incorporate and that would be at the direction of the health officer. But mourn the countless hours that have gone to rewriting these health orders. I don't expect my position to carry the day today but we are probably going to continue to see future revisions of the health order and I hope there would be serious consideration given to, without changing the substance of it in any way, could we change the structure of it so that it's both less time intensive to revise but also more comprehensible to the public?”

Nobody responded. The rest of the Board then voted to extend Dr. Doohan's contract to the end of the year at part time for 20 hours a week for a total of $325k total compensation starting back in August of 2019 (part-time) and continuing through December 31, 2020. (Mark Scaramella)

MY FAVE DOOHAN-ISM was her advice to re-open bars but only allow them to stay open until 8pm. The doc's reasoning? After 8pm bar patrons can't be trusted to keep their masks on and socially distance.

SODDEN THOUGHT: Say you're a free enterprise buccaneer looking to hire. You throw a help wanted ad out there. "Wanted. Experienced public bureaucrats with Mendocino County work history only. Pay ranges from $80,000 t0 $300,000 annually with full fringe benefit package." How many people from local admin, including the supervisors, could make the money out in the capitalist jungle that they're making now? 

DISBANDING THE POLICE: One night I was trucking down Clement Street in San Francisco. It was about 9 and I was at the east end of the street where there were a couple of Irish bars, so-called, with shamrocks in the windows and posters for soccer matches. The door of one of those joints flies open and here come a couple of Nautilus Youth, big gym-muscle boys flailing away at each other. And here come a half-dozen more brawlers, all large, all strong, all drunk, all trying hard to maim each other. The little brawl is now partly in the street. A squad car pulls up. Two cops, one a short, pudgy, obviously unfit woman, the other a short, slight Asian cop. The warriors simply shrugged off these feeble attempts of the short and shorter to separate them. The fight, now bloody but no one dominant, continues until three cars of large cops arrive who instantly grab the fighters, shove them up against the wall and pin several to the sidewalk. Fight over. 

THE POINT? Force is often necessary in the context of the most violent country in the world, and the peace keepers, aka law enforcement, must, when literal push comes to literal shove, have the physical ability to restrain the berserkers. 

FOR YEARS, SF had a late night squad, described to me by another cop as "a bunch of fat guys who drive around the city at night beating people up." The cops I saw that night on Clement breaking up the fight were all large, large enough to throw other large people around like rag dolls. I concluded that SF still has an on-call roving squad of head breakers. Every city does. 

SURE, a lot of the wackos the police spend most of their shifts sorting out could be handled by a Nice Person of the social worker type, but a cop would still have to be present if the situation required physical restraint, as many situations do.

MAJOR SILLINESS is about to grip Fort Bragg as momentum grows among the virtue platoons for re-naming the town. I was glad to see mayor Will Lee short cut what would certainly be hours of public time taken up with righteous, and historically ignorant, speeches about what a bad man Braxton Bragg was and why his evil memory should be eradicated by re-annointing Fort Bragg more in keeping with Joe Biden. This is the town previously ripped off by an enterprising lawyer who discovered that an errant law about ethnic equity applied to the unsuspecting seaside town, and if FB didn't pay up to ensure justice for its already thoroughly integrated Hispanic community, well, it would cost a lot more. (The opportunistic legal eagle apparently didn't want to take on Ukiah where the Hispanic community is confined to the town's south end.)

THIS KIND of thing, this history re-write, is dangerous because obliterating the true history of a place, or this country for that matter, leaves US with no accurate idea of who we are and what we came from, and why and how it works now. Braxton Bragg, and Fort Bragg, were established to protect Indians, not murder them. Nope, didn't work out, but that's what's unique about our country — despite its crime-drenched lineage here we are more or less intact. Until now, as the final test of the bloody experiment plays out in a three-pronged assault on it — plague, economic collapse and civil insurrection.

ON THE OTHER HAND, as showbiz’s Taylor Swift put it, “Villains don’t deserve statues,” as she demanded that Tennessee remove memorials to the KKK’s first Grand Wizard Nathan Bedford Forrest and pro-lynching newspaper editor Edward Carmack.

SHE'S RIGHT. All those monuments to the Confederacy and its traitorous leaders ought to be packed up and stored in a museum basement somewhere. But permit me a hesitant defense of Forrest, and a fact of his mostly lamentable life, requires that people should know he died a deathbed liberal, regretting his racist past.

BUT A LOT of the history cleansers are the same people who dependably want to ban books, people, ideas they don't approve of. 

THIS FACT startled me mucho: "Saint-Domingue, where slavery was abolished in 1793, was arguably the only French dominion in which the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen was implemented. It declared its independence as Haiti did in 1804. In 1825, as reparation for the insolence of freedom, France obliged the new nation to transfer to the French state and former plantation owners 'the equivalent of 15 percent of its national product every year, indefinitely, simply to pay the interest on the debt without even beginning to pay down the principal.' Haiti was still paying in the 1950s, when the debt was finally cancelled. But by then it had been devastated by vicious postcolonial political and economic forces." — The Inequality Engine, by Geoff Mann

A UKIAH WOMAN named Tognoli who describes her bona fides merely as "community activist," wants to form a Citizens Police Oversight Committee for Mendocino County cops, nevermind that police violence is rarely in dispute around here and any citizen with a beef can walk into any police headquarters in the county and talk to the boss. And we have a grand jury, and we have print media standing by to interview and write-up any person or persons who claim they have been victims of gratuitous police violence. (As it happens, the ava is presently watching a federal excessive force complaint against a Ukiah police officer, the first such complaint in years.) In other words, in this place at this fraught time, the police are well-known and mostly regarded as friends and neighbors by all of us except, of course, the loose affiliations of slo-mo criminals and miscellaneous scumbags rotating in and out of the Mendocino County Jail. 

HERE’S MS. T: “The goal of the Citizens Police Oversight Committee is to review the training practices, the tools, and leadership of our local law enforcement community and to help develop and establish the use of force guidelines and monitor the effectiveness of those guidelines. We would also like to support the development of crisis intervention training through policy, practice, and procedure. We would also like to resolve the issues around inequity in hiring. We would like to identify and support legislation that includes the revamping of the Police Officer Bill of Rights and the Police Officer Association. We would like to look at and disaggregate local policing data by race through legitimate and evidence-based inquiries and to review the outcomes and stop some of the disparities. After we do this, we intend to take our stances to all domains within the community including schools, housing, and other areas of concern.”

TWO ON-LINE REACTIONS: 1. Bring it on. It'll be as inert as the Measure B Committee or the Climate Action Committee and no one will notice their existence. Matter of fact, why not just merge the Climate Change Committee and Measure B and have them do all three things? Same people. They could have a joint meeting and have a nice politically correct chat about all three things once a month, save on gas. Nobody’d notice. Nobody’d care. 2. The proposer hasn't even tried to make the case that a review board is even necessary in Mendocino County. Let's see a list of things that need fixing in Mendo with data and a rationale. All they've offered so far is just a rote opinion of the moment.

AS THOMAS PIKETTY points out in his master work, Capital, there are really only two ways to beat back inequality — violent revolution or taxation. In this seethingly unhappy, heavily armed country, it's probably a good idea to avoid violence, but heading towards justice via tax reform is doable. And desirable. So let's return taxation on wealth to 1940 levels when it hovered around 90 percent. The rich, natch, were still able to work around it, but that perfectly fair tax policy funded a number of programs that lifted all boats, including black boats. So far, the national demonstrations we've seen are without specific goals. Walking around shouting Black Lives Matter may feel good but it doesn't get US anywhere.

THIS HEADLINE got me up outta my Lay Z Boy and walking around my office muttering to myself: "How America Fell in Love with the Long Ball." Not me. I hated it as the perversion of the game it was. I think the entire steroid era ought to be asterisked as the perversion of the sport it obviously was. I once saw the non-roided Orlando Cepeda  hit a ball so hard in batting practice at Candlestick it knuckled all the way on a line to the left field fence. Hank Aaron hit legit homeruns. There's two real ballplayers right there. It used to annoy me no end at AT&T whenever Barry Bonds came up, and thousands of Karens and Joshuas would leap to their feet making animal sounds. And Bonds, swollen to about twice his normal size, would duly jack one into McCovey Cove. Ho hum. Bonds was just about the best ball player I've ever seen prior to chemically enhancing himself. Seen the guy lately? About 180, hat size medium. 

AS NATIONAL events drift catastrophically along, with covid deaths rising, neighborhoods burning, unemployment rising to about forty percent, and the national anxiety among affected and unaffected alike almost palpable, where's it all headed? Not to a good place, obviously, and using Mendo as a metaphor for government at all levels — marginally competent in the most serene times — Mendo continues to operate as if there's going to be a magic bounce-back to pre-March lotus-eating. Instead of worst case planning we get, at the county level, so many side contracts they can't be counted and the top dogs — Karen squared — give each other bonuses and operate on the undoubtedly false premise that the feds will dump a ton of reimbursement money on Ukiah at some future hoo-rah date. Maybe. The Fed's printing presses are rolling round the clock, but there's going to be big time demands for all that funny money, with Mendo, bloated, bumbling, unaccountable, and oblivious, on the very bottom rung of the national priority list. 

WE TEND TO FOCUS on the negative when it comes to County government. So it’s only fair to offer some genuine praise when we have a postive encounter. On Monday, while checking the status of a Legal Notice with the County Clerk’s office, the woman who answered not only was the right person to talk to but she knew exactly how to answer our question in a personable, efficient way. We didn’t catch her name, but she was the very model of competence and professionalism. Thanks, whoever you are. (Mark Scaramella)

ON LINE COMMENTS OF THE WEEK

[1] Every year, American police officers have about 370 million contacts with civilians. Most of the time nothing happens, but 12 to 13 million times a year, the police make an arrest. How often does this lead to the death of an unarmed black person? We know the number thanks to a detailed Washington Post database of every killing by the police. What is your guess as to the number of unarmed blacks killed by the police every year? One hundred? Three hundred? Last year, the figure was nine.

That number is going down, not up. In 2015, police killed 38 unarmed blacks. In 2017, 21. What about white people? Last year, police killed 19 unarmed whites, in addition to the 9 unarmed blacks. We know the number of black and white people arrested every year, so it is possible to make an interesting calculation. The chances of being unarmed, arrested, and then killed by the police are higher for whites than for blacks. For both races, it’s very rare: One out of 292,000 arrests for blacks, and out of 283,000 arrests for whites. This is hardly what we would expect from the way the media report these deaths.”

I recommend this article to any of that handful of people in Amnesia …sorry, America …today who are interested in actual facts.

[2] I often wonder how cops nowadays have the guts to pull someone over, especially someone who is driving erratically, or even worse, aggressively. If I were a cop, I would always wonder, “What’s this character going to do? Will he open fire with that pistol he has under the seat?” It does happen. Which reminds me of those clowns who have excessively tinted driver and passenger windows. If I had to pull one of those bozos over, I know what I would do, and it certainly would not be to walk over to the driver’s door. They would get a blast from the cop car PA system telling them to get out of the car, hands high and visible, and put those hands on the roof of the car, spread their legs and don’t move. I certainly think it takes a very special person to be a good cop. It’s a scary, mostly thankless but dangerous job.

[3] The bad apples cannot be rooted out of police forces for one simple reason: Police Unions. There was even a front page article about it in “The New York Times” on Sunday. 

Fierce Protectors of Police Impede Efforts at Reform

Maybe defunding the police is not a bad idea. They should at least threaten to do that until they make police unions illegal. The times story describes how in St. Louis any attempt to reform the police was met with a work slow down and a rise in crime. “It operates a little bit like a protection racket,” said one of the reformers. I’m not confident they can end this for the simple reason that it goes against the liberal mind-set of most people running big cities. After all, it’s the unions that fund the campaigns of the politicians that are supposed to oversee them. The same is true of teachers’ unions.

[4] Speaking of comforts and conveniences, yesterday my husband and I were driving through unknown territory and he needed the bathroom and we saw a country store (very rural here). They were open, had indeed never closed, but were not allowing bathroom use because of covid. So we drove nearly a half hour till we got to the town where we were headed for me to go into the small hospital and get my blood drawn. But family members have to sit outside in their cars. Not allowed in. I asked if he could please use the bathroom. They said no. I said we were leaving. Husband said he could wait. I said no. As we were discussing, they relented. Life in the new America. I fought, most people won’t.

[5] The 90% of white people [ pre-civil-war ] who did not own slaves should not be incriminated with the aristocrats or their policy-enforcers. Reparations should come from the oppressors, not from fellow victims. 

Even the black slaves realized they were better off than the poor white trash sharecroppers and indentured servants who were responsible for their own welfare. Angry white males are more furious with their white bosses than with their black fellow employees [ wage slaves ].

Poor whites are deplored constantly by the ruling class and it obviously cannot be attributed to skin color. If racism is systemic oppression – the wielding of power, then the poor white trash redneck hillbillies must be a different race from the white liberal mucky-mucks who are running things.

Poor working whites are living hand to mouth, paycheck to inadequate paycheck. Their jobs have gone overseas where the living corporations pay foreign wage slaves even less to bring it back here to sell to people with credit instead of money.

What amount of redneck hatred comes from generations of being annihilated on the front lines of bankster wars, shot down by Pinkertons, chewed up like sausage in industrial accidents and poisoned with industrial waste ? Instead of bigotry, intolerance, bias or prejudice could it be overwork, debt, broken promises and having to live in a trailer while watching your teeth fall out and your friends die because you and they cannot afford the doctor and hospital bills, and decent nutrition.

The oppressors are not “whites”, they are “the rich men of the earth” – wealthy people of all races, not the poor shmuck that works his arse off to rent a run-down shack and feed his rug-rats macaroni and cheese.

I’m not denying oppression of former slaves. I am rejecting false guilt for actions of others. Most of the white people here now did not even have any ancestors in country before the civil war. And after 3 or 4 generations of being taxed to make amends for the sins of others, I’m done.

We didn’t do the crime, but we HAVE done the time. It is over.

[6] The election this year is gonna be a fiasco, regardless of who wins. There will be real chaos, and because of the problems with the coronavirus, the attempt to use mail in ballots, and the general clusterfuck, much turmoil will be caused. Perhaps enough to bring down the whole country. Trump and Biden. When either one of these two dudes starts looking good, there isn’t much hope for the country. Down the road, I think we will have a better understanding of how the Romans felt as they watched the dissolution of their society. 12 years ago I watched the large company that I worked at, slowly rupture and die.

The company made printed circuit boards, and had the second largest plating line in the world, the largest in the US. Former third world manufacturers got as good as we were, and then proceeded to undercut us with much cheaper manufacturing costs. We went down hard. I always thought that when the third world learned to manufacture, our jobs would be on the line, and that turned out to be the case. That helped to create the conditions that have led us to the current nightmare.

There’s no good way out of this mess, and things are gonna get very real and unpleasant in a short period of time. Just like when I watched my company die, I expect to be a front row spectator to the demise of my country, which I never before thought could happen.

[7] The simple fact of the matter is America has never come to terms with the fact that half this country fought a war for slavery. They fought a WAR. We’re the only country that took a civil war to get rid of slavery. The only one. We wanted slaves that badly. You would have thought some Southern senator or representative would have gone on record saying do you realize how bad this is going to look 100 years from now. Crickets. We have to pay reparations to these people. $100,000 to every black man, woman or child. They have never been compensated for building this country. We stole the fruits of their labor and called it our own. This must be fixed.

One Response to "Off the Record (June 17, 2020)"

  1. James   July 7, 2020 at 5:55 pm

    [5] “Instead of bigotry, intolerance, bias or prejudice could it be overwork, debt, broken promises…’ Yes, and when the race war is considered a class war the real revolution will begin again. Hopefully peaceful demand, policy reform.

    Reply

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