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Mendocino County Today: January 15, 2021

Mild Dry | 52 Cases | 128 Spared | Baby Beach | Derelict Dan | Upstream Navarro | Salts/Onions/Potatoes | Old Mill | Spending Money | PA Lighthouse | Butts Begone | Front Porch | Old Friends | Black Ship | BLM Flag | White Ship | Ed Notes | Visitor Center | Digital Textbooks | Yesterday's Catch | US Uniparty | Secret Passage | Righty Cops | Westport | Ununited States | Selfie Suicide | Giants Johnson | On Tenterhooks | Working Class | Great Zombie | Found Object

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ASIDE FROM A FEW sprinkles along the Del Norte Coast this morning, expect dry and mild conditions to prevail across the area for the next several days. (NWS)

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52 NEW COVID CASES reported in Mendocino County on Thursday, bringing the total to 3055. Twenty-year-olds (19-34) are the first age group to break 1000, accounting for one-third of all cases.

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NAVARRO RIVER MOUTH NOTES (Update 1/14/21)

Good news! Hwy. 128 did NOT flood last night, and I now think the highway will NOT flood in the foreseeable future, because there is no rain in the forecast. The sandbar will remain in place, making it likely that flooding may happen in a few weeks, if we ever get some significant rain.

Today the Navarro estuary was just a couple of inches below the Hwy 128 road surface at the 0.18 mile marker when I was first there about 12:30 PM. But when I returned about 4:30 pm the water level had dropped about an 1 in. The fog had moved offshore enough that I could see and photograph the sandbar, and it shows no signs of weakening. There was still surf big enough that an occasional wave washed over the top of the sandbar, reaching the estuary. As said before, big surf tends to pile more sand onto the ocean side of the bar.

The Navarro Beach access road was flooded, as was much of the beach parking area. I saw a couple of people out on the sandbar, so they must have either waded out from the road, or possibly climbed down a private trail on the north side.

Because the chance of highway flooding is now diminished, I will probably not need to post any further updates to this most recent series.

Thanks to those folks who gave me kind feedback and encouragement for my efforts to keep an eye on the situation.

Nicholas Wilson

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(photo by Dick Whetstone)

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MR. WENDEL OF FORT BRAGG WRITES: No one representing the Hospitality Center bothered to take the time to speak at the January 11 City Council meeting when the City was considering which city-owned building to use for the Winter Shelter later in the season. The organization is arrogant and incompetent from the top. Without a complete overhaul it will not change. And where was Supervisor Dan Gjerde during this discussion at the meeting? Social Services is a County, not a City, service and he needs to attend public meetings about these issues in his district. Once again, the City of Fort Bragg was forced to take on the responsibilities of others who are paid to provide the services. Mayor Norvell has an abundance of patience with them.

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Navarro By The Sea — Upstream

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HOMEGROWN ROSEMARY SEA SALT BLEND as well as rosemary and jalapeño blended with sea salt is available at Boontberry. Made by local sixth grader, Cian Bouch, the salts come in sweet little jars and are $5 for a pair of both flavors. Great as gifts, easy to send, and supports young entrepreneurship. 

Rosemary salt is great on toast or meats or veggies and potatoes. The jalapeño adds a nice kick. 

Larger amounts available by request. Contact his mom saoirse@saoirsebyrne.com for orders. 


LOCAL ONION STARTS

Onions Starts by Order only this year.

Bunny Bill will have onions available Feb 11 in the Anderson Valley.

There will be no winter abundance this year.

Please Email your order to me by the end of January.

The price is $6 per bundle. There about 50 to 70 plants per bundle.

I will be getting the same varieties: Red River, Copra and Super Star, red, yellow and white.

RR keeps longest, spicier and darker red with age.

Copra doesn't keep as long sweet but strong, SS milder, keeps.

Cost $6 per bundle. I have to order boxes of thirty, Not all orders may be filled.

Please include a phone number. I am planning a distribution day in Boonville on the 12th of February.

bharper@pacific.net


SEED POTATOES

I want to get estimates of what local gardeners might want to have me get for them for early spring planting since there won’t be Winter Abundance where I could do direct-sales.

Most of the 2020 crop is still in cold-storage / not readily accessible yet, but there are a few test varieties I have access to for those who can plant early. I don’t have pricing yet but guess seed will run in the $6-$8/lb range based on 2019 figures from Winter Abundance; but that’s just a guess at this point. 

This seed is from varieties not readily available, if anyone is interested. For now I’m just trying to get an idea of interest so I can put together a first order and not end up with more than I can plant. The plan is to do another order mid February-to-early March for main crop plantings.

My supplier-friends are old hands in the Potato industry who only grow certified organic stock. I usually get top-quality hand-picked seed at a reasonable cost.

Their focus is bringing newer varieties to market, usually cultivars bred for increased nutrition as well as better flavor and field performance. Here’s the brief descriptions I got from my preferred seed potato supplier yesterday:

There's a red skin yellow flesh that has very high solids. No name yet — but, it is moving forward as a winner.

A small amount of Austrian Crescent. I have another yellow fingerling with a French name, so could send a sample of that.

A purple/purple that is great. It is not Bora Valley, which we will have next season, but, it is a real winner.

A mixed box of small seed of all colors and shapes too — even organic russets.

I can get 1-2 boxes of 9-10#s each as a first shipment between now and February 1st if there’s enough interest. As the season progresses the rest of their seed inventory will become available. These are smaller amounts of test potatoes being monitored 'at home' as part of overall varietal evaluations, so may not be available later. 

Anyone interested should email me at purchasing@naturalproductsofboonville.com

Based on prior years I expect young generation Idaho State certified tubers. Young generation seed produces vigorous, more productive plants than the older generation seed sold in stores does. 

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Old Mill Works

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THE FOLLY OF SPENDING MORE

by Tommy Wayne Kramer

We all want the most for our money. No one wants to waste money, and that’s why we have Walmarts, Big Lots, Costcos and tax cheats.

Stores advertise “Our Biggest Sales Event of the Year!” once or twice monthly to capture customers committed to frugal spending, even if it’s imaginary.

Yes, we want to spend wisely. But it doesn’t take much digging to see ways people (and governments) spend hard-earned (or easily taxed) money to make things worse. Very, very worse.

Think of those with lots of money and lives of spectacular comfort, but who spend massive amounts on crazy wasteful things to make their lives worse. Way very worse.

I’m talking about hotshot athletes and Hollywood celebrities with so much money they need 18-wheelers to haul it around, and who buy themselves trailers full of cocaine, expensive booze and coffins, in that order.

A tiny sample of great athletes and well-paid celebrities to illustrate:

Whitney Houston, Steve Howe (LA Dodgers), Josh Hamilton (Texas Rangers), Brian Jones, Sid Vicious, Tommy James, Elvis, Janis, Jimi, etc., Darryl Strawberry, Len Bias, Brian Jones, Montgomery Clift and plenty more. (Special greetings to Jack Nicholson and Motley Crue on the waiting list!

All excellent examples, though not rare ones. Many wound up dead and more than a few took the scenic route by first going to prison.

It’s as if each, working diligently with a trusted financial planner, embarked on a journey guaranteed to drain wealth, destroy careers, and shatter friendships and marriages. Survivors are able to spend their remaining years wondering what went wrong without really having to wonder much at all. Those of modest means have also managed to ruin the only life they’ll ever have, and on much tighter budgets.

There are other ways to spend a lot of money and wind up worse than where you started. Over the years I’ve watched friends and acquaintances remodel their homes with costly and disastrous results.

This often involves older houses with unique charms and character but drained of both in remodel projects intent on modern updates and conveniences. It typically involves destroying interior walls to create the ubiquitous “open floor plan” and installing the latest in appliances and decorating touches.

Well, yes. But no. If you want an open floor plan the majority of houses, even in Ukiah, have them, so there’s no need to ruin a 1920s bungalow. Replacing old windows with energy efficient ones is a fool’s quest. New windows cost you piles of money upfront to save a few hundred bucks a year on heating bills. Yay. 

And now you live in a crippled home stripped of character. Go buy a house in Deerwood, no remodel needed, modern windows included. (These remodels are like buying a ’61 Corvette and installing a teeny Toyota motor to save on fuel, thus ruining the ‘Vette. Just go buy yourself a fuel efficient car and leave the classic to someone who will appreciate it without fretting about an extra $50 a year at the gas pump.)

The kicker comes when the house gets resold and fetches 30% less than it might had it not been hashed up by a moron with too many dollars and too little sense. People in the market for old classic homes will be properly appalled entering rooms twice the size of garages and wincing at windows from Home Depot. In a house built in 1905.

But Michael Jackson’s squandered empire was just pocket change, his shortened life of questionable consequence. Ruining a Tudor Mansion with skylights, shag carpets, and a personal movie theater doesn't compare with the way governments vomit money.

And everyone knows it. I’ve never heard a single person tell me that the local MTA bus service is of any value, and by its own documentations it isn’t. If it had to operate on revenues from its riders the MTA would shut down by the end of this paragraph. It costs lots of money to bankroll something so useless. The Rail Trail is another joke no one laughs at because all the money we spent to provide a paved hangout for people we try to avoid is the punchline. If we hadn’t spent millions on it how much different (better) would things be?

Right now we’re in the middle of a downtown deconstruction operation that finds support within the walls of City Hall, period. Everyone else is either upset or mystified at the novel theory that traffic flow will improve by eliminating traffic lanes.

Measure B, the tax we passed to fund mental health services, is a shining example of spending gone wrong by not spending it at all, which describes an agency collecting millions over several years of existence, spending zilch and providing nothing.

The committee stuffs the money into boxes and keeps the boxes in closets. Things are worse because every county citizen is now $300 poorer. (Amount estimated from thin air but you get the idea.)

Yes we’re taking in millions and, one way or several, we’re making things worse.


MARK SCARAMELLA NOTES: Now that Tommy Wayne mentions it, how much does Measure B cost per Mendo adult in round numbers? The half-cent sales tax is expected to bring in about $30 million over the first five years, or about $6 million in sales taxes per year. Assume approximately 90,000 Mendo residents, with 60,000 are chronological sales-tax paying adults. So that’s $6 million per year for about 60,000 people. Or $100 per year for five years and then a residual $25 per year (one-eighth cent sales tax) thereafter. So Tommy Wayne’s high-sounding estimate is actually low, but in the ballpark. The gold-plated Crisis Residential Treatment unit (aka a four bedroom house with every bell and whistle you can imagine including an electric vehicle charging station) on Orchard Street in Ukiah next door to the Schraeders’ offices will cost about $6 million (not counting operations) alone which costs Mendoland sales tax payers about $100 each.

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Point Arena Lighthouse

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BUTTS BEGONE

Editor: 

Need a meaningful New Year’s resolution and way to beat the COVID-blues with exercise? Help protect marine critters by patrolling Fort Bragg’s sidewalks, gutters and drains for cigarette butts and other junk.

Begone Butts is a newly-formed volunteer group that walks our curbs and sidewalks to remove butts and other harmful litter like plastic straws, floss pics, colored plastic caps, facemasks, etc. With the rainy season, these float down the gutter and into our street drains, directly to the ocean. All the City has done is place silly metal medallions at each gutter drain telling people not to dump there because the stormwater goes straight to the ocean. It ignored a citizens’ effort three years ago to establish butt containers around town for smokers’ use.

Cigarette butts are not biodegradable. They carry harmful chemicals like nicotine, arsenic, lead, cadmium, copper, chromium, ethylphenol and aromatic hydrocarbons out to sea. These can have serious effects on our prized marine wildlife. At times, the butts are even eaten after being mistaken for a food item. They then become lodged in the throat or intestinal tract.

COVID has taught us we must better care not just for ourselves but our whole ecosystem. Step up and help. Two hours a month. Easy. Healthy. Good for you. Good for our community. You can join us on the ground floor of building this effort. Volunteer by calling 707-937-0549.

Rod Jones

Mendocino

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Old Coast Houses

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OAKDALE’S FINEST

by Bob Dempel

I was fortunate some 50 years ago to be a member of the California Agricultural Leadership Program. I joined 29 other upcoming agriculture leaders for a two-year pro-bono program that included seminars at four agriculture colleges in California, a 14 day national trip, and a 21 day international trip. In total all 30 of us spent around 60 days together during the two years. 

Needless to say, we all became close friends. The 30 of us were from all over California. Twenty-four of us were directly involved in agriculture production and the remaining six were in agriculture support management. 

I was involved in Class 4 of this program that now has been operating for 50 plus years. Anytime you throw 30 people together, some friendships develop stronger than others. Such is the case with Lloyd Stueve and myself, and two or three other participants. Not that I was not friends with all of the others, it just happened that a few of us developed a closer bond. 

Lloyd’s background was the dairy business. His family operated Alta Dina Dairy in the Chino Valley of the Los Angeles area. The dairy milked 5,000 cows three times a day. The milk was all non-pasteurized, which is a special way of handling milk as it comes from the cows. Lloyd’s position was to raise younger cows until they were ready to produce milk. Lloyd and his family moved from Chino to Oakdale where he started his own organic dairy. His two boys were involved in the day-to-day operation of the dairy. They milked around 1200 cows three times a day.

Lloyd’s true love was horses and wagons. He would hitch up his horses and participate in parades, festivals, or any other type of gathering that included horses and wagons. Lloyd was known for his constant participation and support of all community activities. He would think nothing of taking a month-long trip that ended in Pahrump, Nevada. One time he told me he was planning a yearlong wagon trip across the US-Canada border from west to east. I asked him just what his wife, Nancy, thought about this idea. His reply was typical, “Oh Bob, she is warming up to the idea.”

Last year Lloyd invited me to his newly acquired ranch in Ravendale. Lloyd thought nothing of sending out postcards with a new picture of him on one side and a short note next to my address. The card in question invited me up for a weekend along with the other Class 4 members of the Ag Leadership program. 

I had never heard of Ravendale, but Lloyd’s postcard’s directions deemed doable. Just drive up to Susanville. Take 395 up to Ravendale. You will see a sign that says Dodge Ranch. Follow that road out to the east 13 miles and you will see the house on the right-hand side. 

The entire drive seemed a little long for me to drive in one day. I elected to drive from my Santa Rosa home to Reno and stay overnight. 

The next morning, I followed Lloyd’s directions. Came to Ravendale, saw nothing but a post office, but there was a sign pointing to the Dodge Ranch, which was my destination. I zeroed the odometer and headed east 13 miles. Soon I was driving on a dirt road. I went 13, 14, 15 miles, and no house on the right. In fact, NO house anywhere. So I turned around and drove back, calculating where the house should have been. Then I drove back to Ravendale. By this time it was 3:30 pm. I said, “To hell with this. I’m going back to Susanville.” 

I had a fraternity brother from Susanville. His nephew is currently a County supervisor and I happened to have his phone number. As soon as I could get cell service, I called the nephew and got the name of a motel in Susanville. The next morning I got up and drove back home to Santa Rosa logging 835 round trip miles. 

I would never have tried this trip if Lloyd had not become such a close friend in the past 50 years. The friendship extends both ways. When our house burned down in the terrible fire of 2017, Lloyd and Nancy immediately drove over to see us and take us out to breakfast.

Around January of this last year Lloyd was involved in a horse-wagon accident. He wound up in the hospital. After weeks he was able to come home. Shirley and I drove to Oakdale to see Lloyd last week. A fellow from Stockton, who was also in our Class 4, and his wife joined us. 

Lloyd is now house bound, spending about 95% of his time in bed. He uses a ventilator and is on oxygen. His right arm is paralyzed and he cannot speak. He knew we were coming to visit him and Nancy told us he had been excited all week, knowing that the four of us were coming to see him on Saturday. 

Words cannot express the shell of a man we saw who we have known and loved for 50 years. My Stockton friend and I did all of the talking. We sat outside in the sun. He has a caregiver and two daughters who provide around the clock assistance. We only stayed for a short time. The prognosis is that Lloyd has developed ALS. Having served in Nam, there also seems to be some connection to being sprayed with Agent Orange herbicide. 

It was a short visit, but a good one. I am not good at visiting sick, old friends. Even writing this article brings tears to my eyes. Enjoy and visit your old friends while they are still healthy.

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Ship In Cove

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WHAT'S THE DEAL, CAMILLE?

To the Editor:

Boy was I surprised to discover the black lives matter flag flying high over the Redwood Children’s Services building that they partially operate from with their clients. I did not realize that they take a political stance in their operations with this flag on the East Gobbi Street offices.

To be fair, I checked on the demographics of Ukiah with the census of July 2019 and found out that Ukiah has about a one percent black population (174 people) with the whites having about 74 percent and Latino’s four percent. Ukiah itself has 15,888 persons.

This flag makes me wonder if the owner of that property realizes that this flag is flying on his property and makes a political statement and not too good for any business, and also do the people of Ukiah realize that this flag comes with a political agenda.

I am calling for the removal of this flag and the reinsertion of the American flag. It is our country and businesses should be proud of what it represents for all Americans.

Pat Boesel

Ukiah

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Coast Ship

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ED NOTES

LAST WEEK some of our Kindle readers complained they couldn't get Amazon/Kindle to load the AVA. This morning our ace techno-guy, Mike Kalantarian, jogged over to the Amazon/Kindle website to upload this week's paper and was stonewalled by the message below. 

This title [the ava] is currently pending approval by Kindle. During this time, our Amazon operations team will review your submission prior to approving or rejecting it. The review process will take 24-48 hours. Amazon will notify you when the review process is complete and if the publication has been approved, rejected, or if additional information is needed from you. If you need to contact Amazon regarding this title while it is pending approval, please email to newsstand@amazon.com.

Kalantarian speculates, “My guess is they are combing through all publications looking for violators of their standards, whatever they may be.” My speculation is that the tech giants are purging Trumpers and all other opinion that “trigger” the snowflakes who run these mammoth cyber-platforms.

I ALWAYS KNEW when fascism finally overtook America, it would look like the Clintons, sound like KZYX, act like Kindle/Amazon, and write like the above and the below:

Greetings from Amazon.

Thank you for contacting the Newsstand team.

We will respond to your e-mail as soon as possible. All time critical queries and concerns will be prioritized first and other queries will be answered within 24 hours.

Best Regards,

Kindle Newsstand Team 

Warren Smith

SORRY to see Warren Smith go. For years he pulled off the amazing feat of the three-day reggae festival at the Boonville Fairgrounds, managing to eke out a living in the seemingly impossible context of an extortionate Fairgrounds rent, extortionate entertainers, thousands in protection money to the Mendo Sheriff's Department, medical care and general babysitting services for the 8,000 stoners and drunks, and listening to high decibel two-stroke music for hours on end. This guy was a true organizational genius.

AMERICA'S most annoying tv news reader, David Muir, said the other night that "Stop the Steal" is the biggest lie ever. Wrong again, Dave. Big ones kicked in from the get with the founding aristo's claim that they were establishing a democracy where slavery was already two hundred years old. Then the Indians had to exterminated because they were in the way of progress. That one was called Manifest Destiny. Fast forward to more recent times, World War One was "The war to end all wars." Then of course we had if Vietnam fell to the communists they would take the rest of Asia. And Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. And too big to fail. The miracle about US is that we've stumbled on pretty much intact, so many skeletons in the national closet that it sometimes seems, if you listen to the culture cancelers, that's all we are. But recent events just may finish US off as a coherent nation-state — half the people violently opposed to government, millions out of work, millions "food insecure," growing disorder in the population centers, an uncontrolled lung disease uncontained, and a tired, physically and mentally unfit old pol at the head of a government despised by more than half our population.

IF YOU THOUGHT Trump of the gold bathroom fixtures was vulgar, Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lopez will perform at Biden's inauguration.

WELCOME to the garrison state. The BBC said last night on its news program, the only news show for all-way-grown-ups, that there are more troops presently deployed in Washington DC than in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.

IS THIS DEPLOYMENT unprecedented? Only in its size. Honest Abe had to be smuggled into DC [by the original Mr. Pinkerton] for his inauguration because of very real threats against his life.

TRUMP was paying Guliani $20,000 a day? He coulda got Ukiah's Al Kubanis for $75 an hour, a room at the DC Y and a meal ticket at Dennys!

FROM the Santa Rosa Press Democrat: "Wednesday’s change in status was welcomed by people aged 65 to 74, especially those with underlying conditions that put them at higher risk of dire outcomes should they acquire the novel coronavirus. “Thank god,” said Martin Webb, 71, a Sebastopol and former principal at Analy High School. “I’m over 70, and I’ve had five heart bypasses. We were never in this line.”

ANOTHER HUMAN MARSHMALLOW mashed into ill health by a combination of school board meetings and tax-paid donuts.

THE ILLIBERAL LIBERALS continue to dictate what Americans can read and see: An upcoming storyline in “Pearls Before Swine,” the popular comic strip created by Santa Rosa cartoonist Stephan Pastis, has been pulled from 850 newspapers by its distributor because five installments scheduled to run next week depicted a military coup. Pastis submitted the strips more than a month ago and never meant to comment on the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., by supporters of President Donald Trump as Congress met to recognize the Electoral College victory of President-elect Joe Biden, a syndicate spokesman said.

BIDEN'S FIRST PLAN. He has asked Congress to green-light another $1.9 trillion in spending to rescue the country from the COVID-19 crisis during a primetime address Thursday night from Wilmington. “I look forward to working with members of Congress in both parties to move quickly to get the American rescue plan to the American people,” Biden said in a speech at the Queen theater. Biden unveiled the broad strokes of a rescue plan that includes items that will likely have some bipartisan support — like an additional $1,400 for Americans — boosting the total to the $2,000 per adult President Donald Trump demanded in December. “$600 is simply not enough if you still have to choose between paying rent and putting food on the table,” Biden said. But it also outlines loftier goals, like implementing a national $15 per hour minimum wage, a campaign promise the Democrat made. Overall, $400 billion of the $1.9 trillion is specifically geared toward combating the virus, including $160 billion to go toward a national vaccination program. 

NEWSOM finally does something useful, although with him you better wait to see if he actually does it. The governor says he wants to take on the $3.2 billion textbook industry by budgeting $15 million toward free alternatives. Not only are school books unreadable, they convert books to a form of kryptonite for millions of Americans, who leave school and never pick up a book again. (cf, Trump)

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Visitor Center, United States Capitol, 13 January 2021

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SPEAKING OF TEXTBOOKS, I had an argument with a local school teacher a few years ago who insisted that not only would on-line textbooks be fancier and better educationally, but that they’re cheaper than printed textbooks and the faster schools went digital the better. She refused to listen to my argument that not only are electronic texts a fundamentally bad idea, but that when you calculate licensing and upgrades and updates for hardware and software, e-textbooks are more expensive than printed books which last for at least seven years for most basic K-12 subjects which in general do not require “updates.” The big textbook publishers — McGraw-Hill, Houghton-Mifflin, et al, know the educational budgets and economics and they’re not going to suddenly become philanthropic institutions by selling their software and content for significantly less than textbooks. Instead, they tout the intangible additional benefits of ever-fancier e-textbooks such as “interactivity” and other alleged benefits as grounds for their ever-increasing costs. We won’t go into the entire pros and cons exercise here and besides, the computers in the classroom argument was lost decades ago when it was obvious that the educrats weren’t listening, choosing instead to pay through the nose for techno devices which actually hindered reading and learning. (Computers in lab settings and at home for high-school kids are ok, but no self-respecting teacher really wants teenagers focusing on a screen when they should be focused on the teacher and whatever course content is being presented. And most pre-teens shouldn’t even be exposed to computers.) If you can show me an independent study produced by anyone besides the edu-techno juggernaut that shows kids learn better with cyber-devices than books, I’ll be happy to change my mind. I have yet to see one after extensive looking. There are plenty of independent studies documenting the downside of computers in the classroom, but the average American, including most teachers, don’t pay attention and consider such argument to be heresy. The pandemic and associated on-line “learning” has only made this worse with more and more independent experts pointing out that excessive dependence and abuse of technology creates easily distracted, shallow, sometimes techno-obsessed graduates who are incapable of learning anything in any depth. Looking at today’s high school graduates who are the first generation of kids who went through all twelve grades with a heavy reliance on computers should be enough to convince anyone that there’s no overall educational improvement; in fact, it’s much worse. Not that the educational establishment is capable of any such reflection. 

BACK IN THE 80s when computers were first entering classrooms I taught computers and the major software applications — word processing, spreadsheets, database management, page layout, etc. — at Evergreen Valley Community College in San Jose for about five years. The computer classrooms had desktop computers with accompanying software at every desk. Since it was fairly early in the computer age, the textbooks were commercial instruction books (not textbooks as such) and the lessons were based largely on the chapters in those instructional books. I started every class by grandly marching over to the master power switch for the classroom and shutting all the student computers off. I then walked back to the whiteboard and the overhead projector for my own computer and announced, “During lectures you will be paying attention to me and the materials I present. There will be no temptation to peck away at the keyboard.” I used the whiteboard to explain concepts, diagrams, terminology, and process-steps and the overhead projector to demonstrate usage and techniques. About half the students were recent high school grads who, while computer savvy, had not been taught many computer basics (like hardware components, operating systems, file management and naming, backing up, etc.). The other half of the students were adults wanting to switch into computer careers. Even though the classes were supposed to have “prerequisites” of at least one basic computer course, and the students had supposedly “completed” them, I quickly found that they didn’t really know the basics they needed to know and I had to backtrack and cover basic stuff they should have already learned. This meant that there wasn’t enough time to cover the material in the instructional books so I had to grade them only on the material that I was able to cover. This in turn meant that if they went to further more advanced classes they started out again in deficit and the cycle continued. I was told by my fellow instructors that this was common across the educational landscape. Students went from class to class and grade to grade, each time falling further behind because they never learned what they needed to learn at any given grade. Test scores nowadays bear this out. The average high school graduate who has been through twelve years of techonology-based “education” in this century is simply not at the educational levels that were common for most of the 20th Century. The implications of this growing educational and substance deficit in all kinds of jobs now are obvious in millions of supposedly educated Americans.

(Mark Scaramella)

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CATCH OF THE DAY, January 14, 2021

Garcia, Hodges, Huang, Rapp

RICARDO GARCIA, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, paraphernalia, parole violation, probation revocation.

JODI HODGES, Ukiah. Domestic abuse. (Frequent Flyer)

ROBERT HUANG, Ukiah. Taking vehicle without owner’s consent, conspiracy. (Frequent Flyer)

JEREMIAH RAPP, Ukiah. Assault with deadly weapon with great bodily injury, witness intimidation, false imprisonment, suspended license.

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ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY

That’s because politicians play people and they seize upon a misinformed electorate i.e. “stupid people” who have been domesticated with TV, Sports, food, sex and celebrity news. Politicians never have our interest at heart. They don’t care about me, you or anybody else. As long as it serves THEIR AGENDA, that’s all that matters even if it means watching and encouraging you to destroy your neighborhood including injuring and possibly killing your neighbor. They are capable of lighting a match and starting a civil war and standing back, watching the fireworks until it burns out, then zoom in for the kill by seizing more control and power over you.

Fortunately, I figured it out long ago and it’s why I have no party affiliation and have never voted.

What really matters most is the “UNIPARTY” finally showing its face and true colors and coming out from behind the curtain. It’s been a one party system disguised as Democrats and Republicans for ages. 

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“Listen, I don’t condone your uprising — but if you take the secret passage next to the moat, you can breach the castle faster.”

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US POLICE THREE TIMES AS LIKELY to use force against leftwing protesters, data finds

Police in the United States are three times more likely to use force against leftwing protesters than rightwing protesters, according to new data from a non-profit that monitors political violence around the world.

theguardian.com/us-news/2021/jan/13/us-police-use-of-force-protests-black-lives-matter-far-right

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Westport

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AMERICA IS A TINDERBOX. A smouldering, snarling, hyper-partisan, violent tinderbox. And decisions taken in the next few days and weeks will determine whether that tinderbox explodes or not - now or some place down the road. Three events in the past year have led to this breaking point: the coronavirus pandemic, George Floyd's killing, and Donald Trump's refusal to accept the result of the 2020 Election. Americans are now fearful, for both their health and prosperity, mournful for all those lost to COVID-19, resentful and distrusting of their Government, and, increasingly, at dangerously enraged loggerheads with each other. Trump deserved to be impeached by the House of Representatives because he must be held properly accountable for the shameful way that he tried to break the very foundations of American democracy since legitimately losing the election in November. However, there's another undeniable witchhunt going on right now against anyone who supported Trump or who worked for him, and it's a very dangerous and unnecessary one. If all Trump supporters now get treated as criminals, what on earth will that achieve but yet more rage and division? Joe Biden has to stop this nonsense, and he can go a long way to achieving this in his inauguration speech next week. Biden must reach out next Wednesday to the pro-Trumpers and remind them that the United States of America has always been at its strongest when it's united, and that he will be their president as much as for his own supporters. — Piers Morgan

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JOHNSON AGAIN: According to FEC filings, in the lead-up to the 2020 general election, San Francisco Giants principal owner Charles B. Johnson and his wife Ann each donated $2,800 — the maximum allowable amount for congressional candidates — to Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., a QAnon sympathizer who tweeted about the location of House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi during the Jan. 6 riots at the Capitol that caused five deaths.

Charles B. Johnson, 88, is a billionaire with decades-long ties to the Republican Party. His donations have already come under scrutiny in recent years — an ESPN/FiveThirtyEight analysis from October revealed that since 2015, he's given far more to Republicans (nearly $11 million) than any other owner in pro sports. And in 2018, Johnson donated to Mississippi Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (then a candidate), who quipped about one of her supporters on the campaign trail: “If he invited me to a public hanging, I’d be in the front row."

Johnson issued a rare public statement when his donation was revealed, telling the San Francisco Chronicle that Hyde-Smith's remark was "stupid," that he'd gotten his money back, and, “On the whole, I don’t like the idea of politics affecting anything I do with the Giants.”

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ZOMBIE CAPITALISM FEEDING ON DEATH AND DEBT LURCHES INTO FASCISM AND DEFAULT BOMB

by Dr. Nayvin Gordon

The Law and Order President led his followers, carrying the traitorous Confederate flag, to violate law and order in an attempted coup. Some of the treasonous window smashers wore T-shirts with the slogan-Camp Auschwitz and 6 MWNE (6 million Jews was not enough). The Jews were exterminated by the Nazis, as were 75 million people who died in World War Two defeating the Nazi Fascists.

It is obvious that a conspiracy to allow this insurrection designed to terrorize Congress and the people was a criminal conspiracy organized within the White House, FBI, military, National Guard and the Republican Party. The Nazi Big Lie has been used by Trump for years, aided and abetted by the treasonous, racist Republican Party and their corporate backers on Wall Street. The Big Lie was developed and promoted by the German Nazi Party. Tell a lie, the bigger it is the more you tell it: The election was rigged and stolen, Covid-19 is a hoax….immigrants, and Muslims and other scapegoats are to blame for everything that goes wrong.

Are the scapegoats responsible for the over $1 Trillion tax cut Trump and the Republicans gave to Corporate Wall Street?

Did Muslims deregulate corporations and allow them to poison workers on the job and in their homes?

Did immigrants move industry overseas, taking jobs from US workers and causing Iphones to be made all over Asia? Did they force Harley Davidson to build motorcycles in Brazil, India, and Thailand? Did they force Donald Trump to make his neckties in China? 

Did desperate asylum seekers pass laws to weaken workers labor unions while giving $billions to the military?

Did working people across the nation starve and shrink the Public Health Service for decades allowing Covid-19 to sweep across the land?

Under the CARES Act, the US government gave Trillions of dollars to bail out Wall Street and financial institutions while only pennies went to working people. The recent relief bill includes another $200 Billion give away to the rich….

nytimes.com/2020/12/22/us/politics/whats-in-the-covid-relief-bill.html

The top 1% now owns 50% of the Stock Market. Today, some 30% of Corporate America is not earning enough to pay the interest on their debts and are called Zombie corporations. These Zombie companies are now $2 Trillion in debt. 

finance.yahoo.com/news/america-zombie-companies-racked-1-110000761.html

The Fed is still pumping $120 billion every month into the financial markets buying up debt while 40 million workers are unemployed or underemployed and drowning in debt. States and cities across the country have already seen layoffs of over 1 million workers.

70% of the US economy and the GDP are due to consumer spending which cannot be sustained given the level of working-class debt and unemployment. Corporate Wall Street and working-class debt are heading for a massive crisis. American capitalism’s response to the ongoing crisis is to pump billions more into Wall Street and financial markets, making the 1% richer while impoverishing the working class, and accelerating the crisis. As the crisis continues, many politicians will continue to attack social services to make the working class pay for the crisis. There can be no unity with treasonous neo-fascist capitalist politicians. Such “unity” will only push the Government further into control of the fascists as happened under Hitler in Germany. 

While Covid-19 testing rates FALL and Covid-19 infections EXPLODE across the nation, the criminal homicidal policy of forcing people back to work and school continues to guarantee massive infections, sickness, and death, soon to reach one half a million Americans. Death is falling most heavily on the elderly, the working class, and people of color.

Part of the present tragedy is that millions of workers have been filled with fear and hatred, misled by poisonous racist, nationalist and religious fanaticism. Their solidarity and labor unions have been shrunken, their leaders have betrayed them, and working-class history has been suppressed and forgotten. Too many no longer know that they are members of a worldwide working class; they no longer know what side of the fence they are on. Yet all is not lost, political consciousness is ever-changing.

From its beginning, America has been built on worker exploitation and racism. Only working people acting in their own interest can demand that racist terrorists are outlawed and the Coup plotters are investigated, tried, and punished. Only an independent movement of the working class can defend us against the growing neo-Nazi racist movement and the Covid-19 Pandemic.

The urgent task for the multiracial working class is to rebuild solidarity and class consciousness. To reclaim the power of the general strike and mass mobilizations and demand social transformation from a profit-driven society to one powered by the health and needs of the 99%. A movement for egalitarianism: no rich or poor, no hierarchy of “race,” tribe, religion or nation. We can build a society of economic, social, and political equality for all.

(Dr. Nayvin Gordon, Oakland, writes about health and society.)

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F. SCOTT FITZGERALD’s classic novel “The Great Gatsby” is now in the public domain, meaning writers can mine the characters and plot for their own purposes without having to ask permission. Expect new adaptations — including a graphic novel and a zombie version. (NYTimes)

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FOUND OBJECT

19 Comments

  1. Marmon January 15, 2021

    “[The Left] has gone from saying that half the country is racist…to now in effect saying half the country are terrorists.”

    —@RubinRepor

    Marmon

    • Bruce McEwen January 15, 2021

      Out having a look at the moon and stars, waiting for the revolt to jolt the peace and quite, watching for UFOs, drones, whatever… nothing to report (logged in at 9:09 p.m.). Turn the glass, ding the bell thrice, check the binnacle, trim the sail, adjust the tiller, and pace the deck… still on watch…

      • Bruce McEwen January 15, 2021

        Captain’s Log: 9:19:
        All of a few mins ago the desktop computer started installing an “upgrade” and the crew is asking their selves, “how odd is that?”

        Professor Cosmos, what do you make of it?

        • Professor Cosmos January 16, 2021

          Well, it is highly likely alien anthropologists find the AVA a very valuable source of data from the field. Sounds like they want to dig even deeper, lol.

  2. Marmon January 15, 2021

    I remember when liberals fought for free speech.

    Marmon

  3. Marmon January 15, 2021

    The Mexican president, a socialist, is emerging as one of Big Tech’s most vocal critics on the world stage following the mass-banning of President Trump from Twitter, Facebook, and most other mainstream tech platforms.

    López Obrador said he intends to reach out to other governments to form a “common front” on the issue, and will raise the matter at the next G20 summit.

    Marmon

  4. Lazarus January 15, 2021

    FOUND OBJECT

    What…? I thought the holidays were over.
    Be Swell,
    Laz

  5. burblestein January 15, 2021

    I can recall learning my times table from the rear cover of one of those Dalmatian primary school binders. The tables were printed there, in our faces, whenever we needed that notebook. Not surprisingly, we memorized them without the teacher needing to teach us.

  6. Steve Heilig January 15, 2021

    (Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy…)

    Trump’s future looks Rotten
    Jennifer Rubin. NYT, Jan. 14, 2021

    President Trump faces a horrid future. He is the first U.S. president in history to be impeached twice; he lost the popular vote twice; he lost both the House and Senate for his party; and more than 383,000 Americans have died from covid-19 on his watch. He has clearly sewn up the title of “worst president ever.” If found guilty by a soon-to-be Democratic-controlled Senate, he will be unable to run for office again and may lose his post-presidential benefits (e.g., salary, travel allowance). But that is far from his biggest worry.
    Trump may be sued civilly or charged criminally for tax avoidance or other financial crimes that state prosecutors in New York are investigating. Depending on the charges, he could face significant fines or even imprisonment. (Trump has maintained that he has done nothing improper.)
    Speaking of finances, Trump reportedly has more than $400 million in loans coming due. However, his banks are cutting ties. Deutsche Bank, which holds about $340 million of the debt, and Signature Bank do not want to do business with him. It is far from clear what lender is going to take him on as a client. He might need help from his overseas authoritarian friends.

    Trump may also face a federal criminal investigation for seeking to change election results in Georgia during two phone calls with state election officials — one of which was recorded. In addition to potential federal crimes for election offenses, prosecutors will need to look at whether his vague threat of criminal liability in his call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger qualified as extortion.
    That was all before we got to his Jan. 6 activities. Federal investigators and the U.S. attorney for Washington, D.C., as well as senior Justice Department officials will need to determine whether there is a basis to charge Trump with incitement to riot or conspiracy to commit sedition. They will look not simply at Trump’s remarks that day, but also his tweet calling for “wild” protests in the capital, his rhetoric after the election and his conduct during the siege, when he failed to issue a clear, unequivocal directive for his people to stand down. (That the president managed to issue a statement on the day of his second impeachment proactively calling for “NO violence, NO lawbreaking and NO vandalism of any kind” makes his hours-long silence on Jan. 6 look even worse.)
    Beyond criminal liability, Trump could surely be sued by the relatives of those killed or injured in the siege, or to cover the costs incurred to repair damage. He cannot be sued for “official conduct,” but leading a riot to overturn an election will be difficult to slot into the category of “official duties,” to put it mildly. It was a continuation of his campaign intended to give him a second term, not to effectuate any policy or interest during his existing term.

    Even on the slim chance that Trump is never charged with any crime and manages to escape all civil liability, he will be deeply in debt (his original debt plus any costs to defend himself in court). He will also be a social and business pariah, banned from social media and unwelcome in most democratic countries. It is not clear how many people are going to pay to belong to a seditionist’s Mar-a-Lago Club or stay at any of his properties.
    One can surely understand why the prospect of losing was so terrifying for him — aside from the humiliation. Quite simply, he faces a miserable post-presidency.

  7. Marmon January 15, 2021

    Good morning to everyone, hopefully going to be a big day of declass, pardons, and special counsels.

    Marmon

    • Bruce McEwen January 15, 2021

      The homicidal threats sampled in Counter Punch’s “Roaming Charges” this a.m. (similar to the one posted on this page a couple days ago by a self-described rich Texas rancher and retired general) provides an edifying example of the kinds of nuts who believe Trump speaks for them. Obviously, they missed the episode of Star Trek wherein Lt. Spock tells Capt. Kirk that “threats are illogical, and often lead to unwanted consequences.” To say nothing of squandering the element of surprise, which is of importance in any military operation, but absolutely essential in a coup.

      • Bruce McEwen January 15, 2021

        ergo: These bloodthirsty threats are being used to spread panic and despondency, rather than to cheer-up the flagging morale of the rebels, as the self-styled general/rancher claimed to be doing in his absurd boast.

        • Bruce McEwen January 15, 2021

          Guard Duty Roster:

          The National Guard should not be expected to do more than secure the capitals, the rest of us should be on alert for isolated outrages, of the kind catalogued in the samples Amazon used to refute Parler’s TRO motion, committed by a dispirited, undisciplined militia, driven from the field and licking their wounded pride.

          • Professor Cosmos January 15, 2021

            It would seem that our elected representatives and senators in Congress, high profile news media persons, etc need 24/7 armed protection for awhile.

            Right now these people are “soft targets”.

            I think there is a site called Gab, and one called thedonald dot win, where posting is going on.

        • chuck dunbar January 15, 2021

          I took a quick look at that Counter Punch piece you cited, Bruce, regarding Parler posts. Indeed, “blood thirsty threats” are what they are, and nasty, despicable stuff, not worthy of spewing out to the multitudes on “free speech” platforms. God save us from this craziness. The First Amendment has to do with government restriction on free speech, not businesses and social media platforms, and even then the government, per Supreme Court decisions, can step-in and limit clear threat speech and speech that incites to violence. These folks can rant in bars and to their neighbors, make phone calls, email, send out handbills, get on soapboxes on public streets and yell, etc. They can say what the want generally but they don’t get to use platforms that magnify their power, and create more crazies. Thanks for your posts on this issue, Bruce.

          • Bruce McEwen January 15, 2021

            At this juncture, critical as it is, you and I part company w/ the likes of James Marmon who insists upon the opposite opinion, for insistence that guys like our former pests in that department, “Joe” and “Guest” were banned from this website –and Mr. Marmon howled in outrage that these/those entities ( I was of opinion that “Joe” was some sort of robotoid like R2D2 of C3PO) had been “non-personed” by our esteemed editor, after due consultation w/ not only the editorial board, but after a long thoughtful indulgence in those frightful posts until, like any wayward kid will do, they broke all bounds of common decency… so, yes, we must be vigilant in anticipation of reprisals.

  8. George Hollister January 15, 2021

    Old math text books are better than the ones currently provided in school. I have a collection of them, and used them for my kids when they were in school. Lots of word problems, and clearly described algorithms for solving problems is the key.

  9. Eric Sunswheat January 15, 2021

    RE: The Big Lie
    -> September. 18, 2020
    NO EVIDENCE THAT PROVES TOUCHING FENTANYL CAN LEAD TO OVERDOSE

    A guide created by the American College of Medical Toxicology and American Academy of Clinical Toxicology says that for opioid toxicity to occur, “the drug must enter the blood and brain from the environment. Toxicity cannot occur from simply being in proximity to the drug.”

    Experts also say it’s highly unlikely for an overdose to occur via inhalation; high amounts of the drug must be aerosolized for this to happen.

    “Based on our current understanding of the absorption of fentanyl and its analogs, it is very unlikely that small, unintentional skin exposures to tablets or powder would cause significant opioid toxicity, and if toxicity were to occur, it would not develop rapidly, allowing time for removal,” the guide says.
    https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article245836755.html

    https://www.acmt.net/Library/Positions/Fentanyl_PPE_Emergency_Responders.pdf

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