THE END OF ENLIGHTENMENT
I’d like, with your permission, to respond to two letters and one article in the AVA of 4 April 2012.
1. To Lee Simon’s letter, “Three Questions”:
Yes, good brother, there are many who would like to overturn not The New Deal, but The Enlightenment. Not long ago, my old friend, José Antonio Sanchez Paso wrote me from Salamanca, Spain. I’ll quote his exact words, and then translate them:
“Todo lo que dijo Franco es como una broma pesada, pero la frase suya que más recuerdo y que más terror me produce fue aquella de “Arrancaré de España hasta la ultima raiz de la Enciclopedia.”
“Everything Franco said is like a sick joke, but the utterance by him that I remember best and which most horrifies me is, “I will tear from Spain every trace of The Encyclopedia.”
And don’t forget the words of Yeats from “The Second Coming.”
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
2. To Bill Brundage’s letter, “Defending One Side”:
Mr. Brundage, NPR sucks. It is bland, boring and corporate.
It is a final resting ground for mediocrities like Margo Adler, Cokie Roberts, Lenny Lopate, and many other second and third rate journalists.
Because it accepts funding from corporate scumbags like Monsanto, Entergy, The Waltons, and The Gates Foundation, its reporting is compromised. You will never hear about research on the dangers of GMOs from Jeffrey Smith, William Engdahl, or Dr. Arpad Pusztai; nor the broader dangers of corporate control of our food supply and the use of toxins like Round-Up from Doctors Vandana Shiva, or from Marc Lappe and Britt Baily.
Don’t expect to hear comprehensive analysis of the insanity of nuclear energy from Dr. Helen Caldicott, Karl Grossman, Harvey Wasserman, Arnie Gunderson, or from Stephen Wing — who documents the untruth of the claim that there were no deaths as a result of the disasters at Chernobyl or Three Mile Island.
Don’t expect to hear Jonathan Kozol or Danny Weill dismantling the lies of Arnie Duncan and the destroyers of public education; don’t expect to hear Cecilia Farber or Rebecca Culshaw challenge the AIDS paradigm.
And you’ll never hear real journalists like Alexander Cockburn, Michael Parenti, Bruce Dixon, Glenn Ford, or Amy Goodman challenging the blatant lies of Obama or his spokes-people like Hillary Clinton or Samantha Powers about American foreign policy — may they rot in Hell with Condoleezza Rice, HenryKissinger, and Zbigniew Kazimierz Brzezinski.
3. To Steve Heilig re his article “Two Cheers for Obama Care”
Chris Hedges, who has written an article called, “The Health Care Hindenburg” wrote in a more recent article about the corrupt, evil, rotten bill, ACA, entitled “The Real Health Care Debate,”
“The debate surrounding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act illustrates the impoverishment of our political life. Here is a law that had its origin in the right-wing Heritage Foundation, was first put into practice in 2006 in Massachusetts by then-Gov. Mitt Romney and was solidified into federal law after corporate lobbyists wrote legislation with more than 2,000 pages. It is a law that forces American citizens to buy a deeply defective product from private insurance companies. It is a law that is the equivalent of the bank bailout bill — some $447 billion in subsidies for insurance interests alone — for the pharmaceutical and insurance industries. It is a law that is unconstitutional. And it is a law by which President Barack Obama, and his corporate backers, extinguished the possibilities of both the public option and Medicare for all Americans. There is no substantial difference between Obamacare and Romneycare. There is no substantial difference between Obama and Romney. They are abject servants of the corporate state. And if you vote for one you vote for the other…
Obamacare will, according to figures compiled by Physicians for a National Health Plan (PNHP), leave at least 23 million people without insurance, a figure that translates into an estimated 23,000 unnecessary deaths a year among people who cannot afford care. Costs will continue to climb. There are no caps on premiums, including for people with “pre-existing conditions.” The elderly can be charged three times the rates provided to the young. Companies with predominantly female workforces can be charged higher gender-based rates. Most of us will soon be paying about 10 percent of our annual incomes to buy commercial health insurance, although this coverage will pay for only about 70 percent of our medical expenses. And those of us who become seriously ill, lose our incomes and cannot pay the skyrocketing premiums are likely to be denied coverage. The dizzying array of loopholes in the law — written in by insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyists — means, in essence, that the healthy will receive insurance while the sick and chronically ill will be priced out of the market. ...”
I highly recommend perusal of the entire article at www.truthdig.com.
I could easily fill ten pages with a rant against this mamarracho of a bill, but great work has already been done by writers like Mark Scaramella (“Judge Vinson Does Us A Favor”), Bruce Dixon (“Obama Democrats vs. Tea Party Republicans: A Fake Fight”), Doctors David Himmelstein and Steffie Woolhander (“Obama’s Reform: No Cure for What Ails Us” and other articles), and NNU Co-president Jean Ross who cites ten significant problems with the bill in “We Need Medical Care for All,” as well as the aforementioned and excellent Mr. Hedges.
Unlike Mr. Heilig, the above authors do not resort to questionable and outright bogus statistics, deranged speculations about the preferences of American consumers, or ad hominem attack. If Lindorff, Scaramella, Dixon, Hedges, and the others are members of the “so called left,” how do I join?
Louis S. Bedrock
Roselle, New Jersey
While at the Point Arena School District to review the upcoming Board Meeting Packet, I was informed of monies remaining in the Measure E Bond Fund, in spite of the Bond being defeased (retired) and the Bond Oversight Committee (BOC) disbanded,
January 18, 2011 by Superintendent Cross (chairman/secretary-BOC). Education Code 15282: “No employee or official of the district shall be appointed to the citizens’ oversight committee.” BOC was approved to disband because all members (as was I) were under the impression no remaining funds would exist once the bond was defeased. Exact quote from minutes, January 18, 2011 states: “KNN [the bond finance consultant] has given a quote of $33,500 for the cost to defease the funds, and bank/audit fees total $25,000, leaving a final Gualala School project defeasance of $1,848,250. . . .” The “final” amount taxpayers were to have returned to them.
January 20, 2011, School Board Meeting minutes state: “After a discussion, the Board agreed to defease $1,848,250 back to the taxpayers…” However, this was not the amount to go “back to the taxpayers.” Instead, of Superintendent Cross giving the correct amount to defease the Bond of $1,881,750 (after the cost of bank/audit fees), she gave them $1,848,250. The “final” amount given “back to the taxpayers” was only $1,818,155.07 and not $1,848,250. Bottom line, the amount of $33,500 (cost to defease the Bond which both BOC and Board approved to be deducted prior to the final amount to be given back to the taxpayers) was deducted twice thus, the extra money that remains in the Bond Fund. How much, I don’t know although I have inquired. However, it should be over $30k.
California Education Code 15282 clearly states: “The purpose of the citizen’s oversight committee shall be to inform the public concerning the expenditure of bond revenues. The citizens’ oversight committee shall actively review and report to the proper expenditure of taxpayers’ money for school construction.” They are in place to assure taxpayers’ money was spent on what they voted for. Exactly how can the BOC accomplish this when they don’t exist? By the way, the Point Arena School District has approved plans to use the remaining funds which should have been released “back to the taxpayers.” Yet, the BOC was not informed this would take place — oh, yes, Superintendent Cross told them they could be “DISBANDED.”
POP QUIZ FOR EDUCRATS
To the Editor:
In response to the article in the Mar. 6 Daily Journal stating that Mendocino County Superintendent of Schools Paul Tichinin is being considered for a salary increase, I would like to say that I am firmly of the opinion that Tichinin should not be considered for a raise until he can provide irrefutable proof that he actually knows what the word “niggardly” means.
Following a six-hour mother-of-all Alameda County social services appointments, in which I applied for emergency food stamps, please appreciate the fact that I now have an EBT activated card, and as of midnight I am able to purchase more food products for my enjoyment and well being.
After a thorough interview process in which I interacted with four young, tough, black, urban-hip caseworkers, intake specialists, and general clerical personnel, this was their determination. “Craig, we checked. The social service worker in Berkeley attached to the Berkeley Department of Mental Health who told you for two years that if you kept quiet, everything would be taken care of, did not even put you in the system. We don't think that anything is being taken care of for you in Berkeley. In fact, we don't believe that anybody anywhere is giving you anything at all. We believe that your situation in Berkeley is insane! We believe that there is nothing the matter with you; you are fine. From now on, you need to take care of yourself. In terms of social services, contact your caseworker here at the Oakland office if you need anything. We are giving you an emergency EBT food stamp card today, and at midnight, you will have food. If we can get you anything else, we will.”
I look forward to a future of intense Kundalini Shakti spiritual energy working through me, which is my definition of basic sanity.
Craig Louis Stehr
THE GOD COMPLEX
David Eyster, I have heard people call you many things but the closest to reality was “Caesar.” (Last month's AVA.) I am currently in Mendocino County Jail awaiting trial. Although this one is not about me. ((Stay tuned, one is coming.)
Anyway, David Eyster, I've read in the paper just last month (Ukiah Daily Journal) that you yourself have made the decision to pick and choose what cases you think are valid. I want to say “valid” because most cases are valid or they would not be brought before you. Let's just use your own words, “It's just a different focus,” meaning the way he's trying cases. Our previous DA was mentioned. Ms. Meredith Lintott saying she had the courts backed up — of course, with the cases the system brought forth the usual way crimes are committed. Cases were submitted by law enforcement to the District Attorney's Office and, as our previous DA was doing, things were done the way they are done. Due process according to the law submits the cases to the courts making court dates for arraignments than pleas. Then if by chance a plea bargain is not made, a preliminary hearing before a judge to decide if there is enough evidence to go to trial.
In other words, District Attorney Lintott did her job. Not her way, but the way the system is designed.
Now the way Mr. Eyster has decided to run our justice system seems criminal and very much out of context. The system is a system for a reason and here's why. Doing things Mr. Eyster's way gives him too much power, power to drop cases for friends, family, for favors, bribes, payouts, possibly being racially motivated or even biased. It has also become obvious to us that Eyster's making many enemies in our court system.
The Public Defender's office has stated their feelings on his tactics with his holier than thou God complex and “Because I Can” attitude. I've seen the way judges look at you, always standing with your arms across your chest. You are more representing yourself then the people. You're a pain in the ass which is to be expected. You're disrespectful and downright rude. The people are supposed to be seeking justice, not one man's opinion on the way he sees fit. Innocent until proven guilty, right? Our justice system already does not work, much less with this man's antics and behavior, inexperience, disrespectfulness and rude way of representing the people.
Furthermore, Mr. Eyster, you also said, “I believe in seeking praise.”
The last year Ms. Lintott was in office she filed 5,609 cases. Mr. Eyster takes office and files 3,988 cases the first year under his direction. He says his approach has taken 70-90 cases out of court over the past year. (Just vehicle violations.) He says, “It's the equivalent of one deputy district attorney caseload.” (I don't think anybody at the District Attorney's Office has been let go.) Vehicle violations? Really? This is your approach?
What he's talking about is Western Corrections. It's a firm that has access to DMV records and can give a defendant direction on how to clear their record. This firm was already on the books before Mr. Eyster arrived but wasn't used much if at all. He said, “Right!” Please, Mr. Eyster, tell us more.
Mr. Eyster also stated, and I quote, “As the man responsible for the flow of cases into the court system.” Eyster attributes the changes to two things — fewer arrests (which would explain some of his claim of less court cases then Ms. Lintott), and new practices he has instituted for making tougher decisions on how defendants are charged. (What he means is instead of getting a “drunk in public” you may be looking at drunk in public, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.)
What he is doing is railroading people. He said it in so many words. “I'm making tougher decisions on how a defendant is charged.” This is what he means. I have witnessed it myself.
He also states, “As the number of sheriffs goes down they are not patrolling and there is less enforcing,” referring to layoffs and other cost-saving measures that mean less patrol. “So it's the dynamics of the situation we're in plus my policies.”
There have been deputies hired in the last two months. Officers Cooper, Logan and Corning. These that I know of.
Mr. Eyster, you are full of shit and I believe your true colors will come to light. Although I do agree with Eyster's innovative pot prosecution policies, after all, we are a pot-friendly county. But as a person of ethics without bias or prejudice, he just is not someone who should be representing the people.
Justice for all,
I was gratified to learn, via Jeff Costello's article, of the (re?)publication of the book about Pete Seeger. For many years Seeger has been a hero of mine, a real American like the founding fathers, an inspiration to young and old alike.
He impressed me most forcefully at a concert in the hills of Menlo Park in about the middle 60s sometime. I was then dating, or seeing, or something, an early guy named David, a very conservative guy of the sort you'd see today yah-yahing for somebody like Santorum. (What was I doing with him? Long story short, I really don't know, but he was a pretty good lay and I was pretty young.) Anyway, I told him, “We are going.” (I usually wasn't so pushy, but this was important.) He grumbled, “Damned commie.” So we went and the concert was great, I thought. Anyway, at one point Ol' Pete said, “Stand up and join hands and we'll sing We Shall Overcome.” And so help me everybody including uptight ol' David stood and took hands and sang it and it was a terrific moment. I could hardly believe it; he'd worked a miracle! Then, later, David and I were walking out to the parking lot and our paths were crossed by Pete and a whole slew of children hanging on his every word — a tale of some kind from what I caught. On they went trailed by what I supposed were the moms, sort of shrugging and laughing. Nobody called the cops and he was a real Pied Piper. If there is a shred of evil in Pete, by now we'd sure have heard. You know kids — they know phony. The only folk ever said otherwise where those HUACs and we all know what jerks they were. I think we've been gifted by having Pete and we should all be grateful.
BIG WINE’S BIG NOISE
The phone at Starcross rang frequently the day the Santa Rosa Press Democrat ran a story mentioning the impact on our contemplative community of noise resulting from the Artesa/Codorniu “conversion” of forest to vineyard adjoining our land. One caller said: “I was in the wine business for 28 years, we don't need more wine. From the minute they cut the first tree you will have no peace!”
Starcross was identified in the article as a “lesser known and latebreaking critic.”
We have been raising the same concern about noise repeatedly at every opportunity since 2004!
We have been and still are ignored despite the fact that the noise producing corporate yard has been placed over our objection only 440 feet from our property line in an area known for carrying noise from hillside to hillside. No noise study has ever been carried out by Artesa/Codorniu on our land.
The well-known and talented crisis consultant recently hired by Artesa/Codorniu referred to our concerns as “minor.” He was just doing his job and he is good at it. But CalFire had the same attitude and this is troubling to me.
I like wine and vineyards. Starcross is privileged to have two family vineyards adjoining us. There have never been difficulties between us in the 36 years we have been neighbors. We know each other's dreams and we are sensitive to them. They know that peace and quiet is essential for our life and our mission.
It is impossible to have the same relationship with a giant multinational corporation whose owners reside on estates far across the ocean.
Sonoma County has noise ordinances covering our concerns. We suggested that if Artesa/Codorniu would commit to the standards that would satisfy our concerns. There was no response.
Had the county been overseeing this large conversion project I believe they would have attempted to balance the various public interests including the concerns of adjoining property owners like ourselves with the profit-making objectives of Grupo Codorniu with its lawyers, public relations and other experts.
Once on the phone with our Sister Marti screaming at her, “You have no leverage with Calfire. You have no leverage with Artesa!” over and over.
He was so loud that others of us could hear him. What is the leverage that we lack?
Presumably he means a special relationship with Calfire. The concerned over lack of independence in the process has been commented on by a number of others.
This is not something for our small community to solve, but it is certainly something to be examined by appropriate authorities if Calfire is to continue to oversee massive “conversions” of redwood forest to vineyards.
Recently when I stepped out of our chapel the sun had just risen. The piercing cry of a mountain lion came out of the redwood trees that may soon be cut down. Probably the lion was only looking for a mate as his ancestors have been doing for centuries.
But as our neighbor, a Kashia Pomo spiritual elder, said to me a few weeks back about a similar situation, “He is crying over the loss of his home.” She could be right.
Brother Tolbert “Toby” McCarroll
Starcross Community, Annapolis
In my travels on our roads I've observed a lot of drivers who seem to be getting very lazy.
Your vehicle is equipped with turn signals — use them!
You also have lights; when it's foggy or rainy — use them! This does not mean parking lights which are illegal to drive with anyway.
How can the rest of us drive safely if we can't see you? Especially if you're making a right or left turn?
Illegal parking in the area has become so commonplace that delivery trucks and even the MTA do it!
Perhaps they have forgotten, or more likely are too lazy to park correctly and walk across the street.
Believe it or not, Anchor Bay does have a crosswalk, but you would never know it from the number of cars parked in it on a daily basis!
Get out of La La Land or off your cellphone and pay attention to your driving!
Just because we don't have so much traffic it's not a good reason to break the law.
Let's keep everyone safe!
I am an elderly woman, great grandmother and great-great-grandmother, almost 80 years old.
I have gotten my feelings hurt — I have been crying — a lot and I am trying to get out of my funky mood but it just hangs around.
My problem started when I called a bus driver and asked if he would be available to take me to a doctor out of town. He said Yes. So I called and made an appointment. He also then decided he needed to see a doctor too, so he called and made an appointment too. Oh yes, it was for the same time. He called back and told the boss what happened. I also called the boss and she agreed with the bus driver. So I had to call the doctor and cancel my appointment. It will never even happen again. My feelings are hurt. I still spend a lot of time crying. My planned nice day turned into a disaster. A friend had said she would like to go but I can't seem to shake it off. You know the saying, “It's hell to get old”? I am a believer.
I try not to be a nuisance to anyone. I thank goodness for having a wonderful daughter and son-in-law.
FAIR PLAY FOR MARC HUNTER
Marc Hunter at age 20 was sentenced to two and a half years in the dungeon system by the Mendocino County Superior Court of Cruelty for a first offense. Marc had poisoned his own mind with a street drug his friends offered him, then broke a window of the Community Center to steal their old VCR so he and his friends could watch a video. His public defender Jan Cole-Wilson estimated the value of the VCR at $50. When he regained his common sense, Marc was so sorry for what he had done. He would have willingly performed any community service required of him, including replacing the window he broke. Twice I attended court for his trial by judge. Twice the prosecution failed to have their act together so the hearing was cancelled. The next day with no notice the hearing was held impromptu where Marc was sentenced to this long prison term. Jan Cole-Wilson told me that Marc would have done anything to make amends. She also told me she was so distressed by the judge's excessive sentence that she cried all night. Here is an excerpt from Marc's latest letter to me from Tehachapi State Prison where he has just been transferred:
“I have been having a lot of problems here. I would appreciate it if you would contact Jan Cole-Wilson. Three weeks ago a corrections officer attempted to have me moved in with another inmate to assault the inmate with a weapon. He said if you don't do this, we will smash your tv and we will have somebody assault you. Instead my mail is being stolen and my tv is stolen. I don't take orders from the cops here. I am doing my time and will not let anybody tell me what to do! I really don't understand it. I guess I am left with no choice but to file with the Kern County DA's office. The inmate they wanted me to assault was running his mouth to the C/Os and is (labeled) a sex offender, I don't take orders from anyone unless I respect them.”
Approximately 20 years ago, Marc arrived at my home as a wanderer with an older acquaintence. He was weak from a diet of junk foods, possibly drugs and cheap wine. He requested to stay at my land as a helper. I told him he would have to stay clean of any drugs, street or pharmaceutical, drinking except at the dinner table and eat a vegetarian diet of whole grains, nuts, fruit and vegetables. He accepted my offer. A year later this 19 year old weakling who couldn't walk a mile uphill without severe pain in his legs was hiking home from the bus stop five and a half miles, half of that distance steep uphill, with a 40 pound bag of dog food on his head for his little dog Bingo. I knew that my health program of an organic vegan/vegetarian diet with healing herbs would work, that it has been used to improve young athletic teams from losers into champions. Even so, Marc's turnabout was amazing.
By sentencing young Mr. Hunter to prison, a successful program was ruined. After the initial prison term, Marc started using drugs, was trapped into successive reimprisonment for parole violations, some of them unbelievably petty.
Dorotheya M Dorman
PS. If anyone can help Marc please write to him directly at:
Marc Hunter P-8084; P.O. Box 1906 — 4B7 C 105
California Correctional Institution
Tehcahapi, CA 93581
RESIST THE FEDS
Resist the Federal Attack Against Legal Medical Marijuana
It’s time for citizens to unite in a nonviolent campaign to resist the federal attack against legal medical marijuana. We, the people, have the power to end the current federal assault on legal medical marijuana, if we unite to demand that the U.S. government respect the sovereign right of California and Californians to develop and regulate a legal medical marijuana industry, free of federal SWAT-team raids, threats of criminal and civil actions against public officials, and IRS denial of the rights of legitimate businesses to open bank accounts and deduct business expenses.
Since the federal crackdown on California’s medical marijuana industry began last October, the burgeoning medical marijuana industry, providing livelihood and essential medicine to hundreds of thousands of people, has been terrorized into a defensive mode. Local officials fear regulating medical marijuana because of federal threats of criminal and civil actions, and asset forfeiture.
Last October, Northstone Organics, leader in compliance with Mendocino County’s medical marijuana laws, was raided by federal DEA agents who handcuffed the proprietors and confiscated their 99 legal medical marijuana plants.
The recent SWAT-team raid on Oaksterdam University and its director, Richard Lee, has led to a broad-based campaign of nonviolent resistance in the San Francisco Bay Area, with several local public officials calling for an end to the federal attack on legal medical marijuana.
These coercive federal tactics, coupled with threats of criminal prosecution and asset forfeiture from U.S. Attorneys to owners and landlords of legal medical marijuana dispensaries, have forced over 200 legal medical marijuana dispensaries in California to close. Now the over 1,000 legal medical marijuana dispensaries still operating deserve our united support in a nonviolent movement to resist this federal campaign of terror.
As a candidate for US Congress in California’s Northcoast Second Congressional District, I have sworn to uphold the Constitutions of the United States and of California. This unconstitutional federal attack against a peaceful, legal industry threatens all Californians. United, we can stand up against this federal crackdown on legal medical marijuana.
I believe we need to end the federal prohibition of marijuana, which has made one of Northern California’s leading income-producing industries an outlaw enterprise bringing violence, corruption, economic waste, and environmental destruction on many levels. Now let’s join with California State Senator Mark Leno in demanding that the federal government “stand down in its massive attack on medical marijuana dispensaries.”
Philo (707) 895-2996
Politics is fun. I find the Republican Party very entertaining as they continue on their path of self destruction. Decades ago they chased the African Americans out of the GOP. Now with their immigration bashing and racial profiling they are doing a good job of chasing the Latinos out of the party. Concurrently, they are on the attack against women's reproducive rights. You can already see the affect of this action on the increasing percentage of women supporting Obama since no self respecting woman could support their position. Also of course they have a bad case of homophobia and engage in Islam bashing. On the congressional level Ryan's budget goes after Medicare for lower income retired folks. The GOP will not be happy until they have cleaned their party of all but the racists, bigots and misogynists.
LET’S HAVE A NIGHTCAP
AV Theatre Guild has ‘Cocktails with Mimi.’
The AV Theatre Guild is ready for their 7th season with the production of “Cocktails with Mimi” by Mary Chase, author of the play, “Harvey.” “Cocktails with Mimi” is a hilarious comedy under the direction of Marcus Magdaleno one of the Guild’s popular actors in previous productions. It opens April 27th at the AV Grange #669 in Philo and also plays April 28th, May 4th and 5th.
Seven years ago my wife Judy Basehore and I saw the need for the Anderson Valley to have its own community theatre once again. So I approached the AV Grange with the idea of establishing a Theatre Guild as the resident acting company of the grange. All profits would go towards improving the theater facilities and theater equipment at the grange. This venture would benefit the grange in its goal of providing a meeting hall for the community for large group activities and presentations. The grange members agreed and the AV Theatre Guild was created.
Judy and I then spent the next six years building a reputation for the Guild by producing plays and teaching theater skills to a stable of approximately twenty actors that could entertain our local folks with quality talent. So far the Guild has earned over $11,000 dollars for the grange and has established an excellent reputation for family entertainment.
Then came the fly in the ointment. Judy and I have to take a break from theater creation, something we did professionally on the University, community and high school level, so we can address the issues that come with my adventure with cancer.
Marcus Magdaleno asked to take on the demands of play production and direction so now the Theatre Guild has a new director. Marcus is opening the Guild’s 7th season with the comedy “Cocktails with Mimi”, starring some of your favorite local actors. It will be produced at the AV Grange April 27-28 and again May 4-5. It’s a win/win situation. The Guild will continue, Judy and I get time off and the show goes on. Break-a-leg. Please continue to support your local theater and actors.
The smartmeter issue continues, becoming more complicated. Why? First, the CPUC did a dismal job of regulating or reviewing the Opt Out plan presented by PG&E. They simply just accepted it. Second, every one will eventually become a victim of smartmeters/wireless. In fact many are already impacted quietly, just unaware.
The CPUC ignored the extra concerns sent to them by counties, cities and concern organizations including: 1) How to protect victims of the 24/7 intrusion, 2) allowance of communities to Opt Out in mass, and 3) no extra cost for Opt Out. To understand the level the CPUC's blindness, they had the audacity to suggest that health issues not be considered in the consideration of the Opt Out plan and yet it remains the central issue. PG&E may be good at providing power but they are seriously lacking in considering all of the variables in an alternative plan. Here are some evolving extra issues not considered.
Does a person with an analog need to have the same initiation fee as one with smart meter? (Since no change out labor is needed.) How is the cost of the involuntarily part of the SmartMeter plan costs (via CPUC change) being credited to those Opting Out and not using this service? Are customers to be charged for meter reading, in rural situations and cities where meters are located in locked or outback locations, and where customers self have previously read and report? Why are property owners in multiple metered properties with Ag power, or secondary homes be charged for each meter including an initiation fee especially when the meters are not being changed? Why did the CPUC allow the utility to change out meters when many folks had delayed; adding an additional cost for change out and the loss of discarded analog meters? Why did the CPUC allow subcontractor Wellington to ignore names on the Delay list and allow Wellington to lie to residents as they said, “they will get a Smartmeter anyway? What happens if a person finds they can not live with a SmartMeter? Can they Opt Out later on? Does an Opted Out rate payer take the Option with them along with the initiation fee when they move? Is the initiation fee reimbursed if they move out of state? Will they have to pay another initiation fee in the new location?
To give an idea at how PG&E handles rural users, power users are supposed to mark a plastic card like the dials on their meter and put it on the main road for the meter person to read, yet many call, fax or mail in cards. The SmartMeter hotline experts insist that meter readers will come to these locations to read. These folks are clueless as many of these meters live on difficult off-road locations and local PG&E exceptions will be made again. The difference is there will have no clearcut rules which leave rate payers at the mercy of sometimes grumpy dissonant PG&E employees.
Although independent scientists are discovering more and more health issues with wireless, a few key things changed during the SmartMeter roll out. The documented Electro Hypersensivity (EHS) in countries that have been wireless and willing to see a problem because of single payer health care are finding that EHS is growing. EHS is a sensitivity that leaves victims unable to live with wireless and regular power without the symptoms of heart arrhythmia, seizures, headaches, nose bleeds, ringing ears and increased issues with many diseases (Klindhart reports wireless enhances Lymes diseases in a negative way.) You wouldn't wish this on your worst enemy. Most revealing is Dr. Magda Havas's simple study using a common remote DECT phone (walk around remote used in most houses.) In a double blind study of 25, 70% showed heart arrhythmia and most were unaware that the arrhythmia was occurring. Double blind and 70% means it is beyond doubt and this is using the common home remote phone! Dr. O. Johansson of the Karloinska Institute in Stockholm, key in revealing the CRT or TV tubes can hurt viewers close to screens, discovered in early 2000 that wireless provokes skin immune response followed by depression of the same. Others have discovered that wireless breaks down the crucial blood brain barrier that keeps common toxins out of the sensitive brain tissue and a recent report (D. Davies 2012 personal communication) suggests that wireless makes liquids acid,) Acid conditions are perfect for cancer formation. As High Density TV was destine to roll out early in President Obama's term in office, European doctors lobbied him to hold back as they were finding their patients with many health issues post HDTV. Doctors are traditionally careful to stay out of these sorts of issues, yet the reactions have been severe. Likewise the recent acceptance of the World Health Organization (WHO) that wireless is a class 2 carcinogen along with chemicals like DDT ads a big red flag. A study in 2008 looked EHS growth trends and noted that a simply plotting on a graph illustrated a disturbing statistical trend leaving 50% of the population in layered wireless environments by 2017. Many are unaware and impacted
Sacramento's Municipal Utility District has created its own Opt Out but is charging $130 initiation fee and almost $40 per month. One supervisor said that the cost to whittle down the Opt Out participants; suggesting that the higher cost was a means to ward off applications. Is this what we want limiting our personal precaution? When one sees trends in a world were cancer and other maladies are growing, do we want to take chances or err on the side of Precaution? Mendocino County chose to support the Precautionary Principle because it makes sense. That is a primary reason they recognized the concerns of their constituency.
Those rocking on the decision to Opt Out should consider this: It is you and your family's health
and the cost will probably be absorbed in the added costs of the soon to be non voluntary time of use costs, cost do to Smartmeter dysfunction errors, damage to personal home equipment and concerns around personal health implants. For me the cost is to be absorbed. Yet more important, I think that the CPUC has shirked its responsibility much as it did not oversee PG&E gas line records or use of gas line testing costs. The CPUC is not doing its job and our health is at stake. There are some activists who are not paying what they call extortion unfair fees (see www.stopsmartmeters.org.) The war is not done on this intrusion in to privacy and private spaces. Remember who created the war and who it is against and well, who is paying for it. Pretty disgusting huh?
PS. We are not alone in these concerns. Maine and Illinois are suing on the Smart Rollouts. British Columbia and Australia are discovering overcharges, health issues and meter fires. Arthur Firstenberg, long time activist has a crucial lawsuit to establish that EHS disabled Americans have a right to be protected.
Memo Of the Week
County of Mendocino
Board of Supervisors
To: Linda Ruffing, Fort Bragg City Manager, 416 N. Franklin Street, Fort Bragg, CA 95437
Subject: Fort Bragg Homeless Mental Health Intervention Program
Dear Ms. Ruffing,
We wish to go on record in strong support of the proposed Homeless Mental Health Intervention Program. We write in our individual capacities as County Supervisors, but also as the current (Supervisor Hamburg) and immediate past (Supervisor McCowen) Board of Supervisors representatives to the Mendocino County Mental Health Board. In addition, we have closely followed issues related to the provision of mental health services prior to our tenures on the Board.
Even before the economic downturn of the past several years, Mendocino County struggled to deliver appropriate mental health services to those in need or to connect them with community-based resources. Problems with service delivery are exacerbated in rural communities like Fort Bragg where fewer services are available, services are less centrally located, and hours and/or days of availability of services are limited.
Individuals who are mentally ill and homeless are at an even greater disadvantage in attempting to access services. Homeless people usually lack the basic transportation and communication resources necessary to connect with services and the structured living environment and/or peer support that would be conducive to successfully accessing and utilizing available services. Mentally ill homeless individuals may also have substance abuse problems which impede accurate diagnosis and treatment.
For the reasons stated above, the Homeless Mental Health Intervention Program is critically needed to provide the screening, outreach, advocacy and case management essential to connect the homeless mentally ill with case appropriate services and improve the chances for successful utilization of those services.
We anticipate that the Homeless Mental Health Intervention Program will successfully assist individuals with seemingly intractable problems that burden the community and too often result in hospitalization and incarceration. Effective treatment for these individuals will greatly improve their personal outcomes and free up resources to better address other pressing community needs.
Please contact us if we may be of any further assistance.
Supervisor John McCowen, Supervisor Dan Hamburg
BRUCE RICHARD’S NEW LOGO
STILL IN THE RUNNING
The three parks in the Request For Proposal you saw advertised in the Ukiah Daily Journal are Hendy Woods, Russian Gulch, and Westport Union-Landing.
This does not mean that our proposal has failed. The Proposal submitted by the Hendy Woods Community (HWC) in conjunction with Save the Redwoods League (League) is currently in the review process. We have met in person several times with Sector and District personnel and the Proposal has passed that level of review. It is now undergoing review in Sacramento and we anticipate the next meeting will occur the week of April 23. We are cautiously optimistic, but we still have a ways to go before we will know whether the Proposal will be approved.
In brief summary the Proposal is:
The Parks Department will operate the Park at the 2011-2012 level of service (Day-use year round; Camping from April 1 through October 15) with volunteers and paid staff.
Camping fees and cabin rental rates will be increased during the high season by $10 per night on Friday and Saturday, and $5 per night Sunday through Thursday; and extra vehicle fee will increase to $10.
HWC and the League will donate $40,000 on July 1, 2012 to be held in a contingent fund to bridge any gap resulting from shortfall of revenue generated by the Park (i.e., camping and day use fees).
HWC will secure and co-ordinate volunteers to provide a minimum of 1000 hours of service as State Park Volunteers to allow DPR to reduce paid staffing while operating the Park at the level of service delivered in FY 2011-2012.
HWC will fund a Volunteer Coordinator to facilitate efficient integration of volunteers into park operations.
The actual proposal is much more detailed. We’ll let you know as things progress.
Meanwhile, as a fail-safe, the Department has issued the RFP that includes Hendy Woods. It does say: “State reserves the right to issue single or multiple contracts based on the best responsible proposal(s).” We have been told repeatedly that if our Proposal is accepted, there will not be a problem with the RFP. But time is short, so they needed to get the RFP in motion.
PS. By the way, the park is open for camping right now and a camp host is already on duty.
Hey College Kid, I'll protest tuition hikes when you verify you're not an academic slacker. I'll join your picket line when it's demonstrated you regularly read books and newspapers. I'll retract this letter when we see you write logically without plagiarizing then pay attention and take notes in class rather than use that time to check Facebook messages while playing a video game. I'll write in your favor to Sacramento when we establish you study alone at least ten hours weekly and know where Afghanistan is. Of course, you'll also need to prove you take classes from tough teachers instead of those rated on line as “easy” and “hot” by other students. And if parents are helping you out financially they obviously merit and should demand the same documented evidence. A few, youngster, refuse to gush obsequiously over your charming self. A few are on to you.
NEIGHBORS, NOT ENEMIES
As he introduced himself last night at our front door, with a nice (albeit not locally produced) bottle of wine, it turned out to be Mr. Farrer of now nearly “road to River's Bend fame.” He apologized, invited us to take a stroll down the road any time and explained that somehow things had gotten too far. I couldn't have agreed more! Turns out Mr. Farrer has had some troubles on the old family estate; a break-in and Sam Prather won’t graze his sheep no more, because they had been attacked by unsupervised dogs. Not my dogs, of course, who are well-mannered and never unsupervised. I really appreciated his neighborly visit, explanation and bottle of wine and I am only sorry that I wasn't home and didn't get to meet him. Beverley was the recipient of his apology while in the middle of a well crisis, dripping with water! So, Mr. Farrer, I still owe you that cup of tea! Now I am wondering and waiting if soon I will find Rebecca and Justin, this year's caretakers at the former Shenoa at my door step, having also remembered that we are neighbors not enemies! I have lived in Anderson Valley for 11 years now and still can be surprised and humbled by the people who make up this unique community.