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WEBSITE DOWN THIS MORNING: Our webhost screwed up while moving our website to a new "improved" server yesterday evening. Because of the size of this website (decades of archived material) the automated process did not complete, and then it took awhile to manually copy everything over. We seem to be back now, and apologize for the downtime.
A WARM AND DRY AIR MASS will continue to produce hot interior temperatures today. A cooling trend is expected early to mid next week as an upper level low approaches the area. This low will also bring a slight chance of thunderstorms as early as Monday evening to the mountains of Trinity County. Slightly better chances for interior storms are expected Tuesday and especially Wednesday. (NWS)
YESTERDAY'S HIGHS: Yorkville 105°, Ukiah 104°, Boonville 100°, Fort Bragg 70°
REGARDING CEO Angelo’s apparent interest in acquiring a residence in Redwood Valley, ace researcher Debra Silva writes:
The Redwood Valley home that Angelo wants to buy appears to be a residence/townhouse on 0.6 ac. going by what is written in MCT 6/19.
I looked up Joseph Cooper and his address 2150 Road E Redwood Valley. Records say that that address is 2.16 acres and that there is a mobile/manufactured home on the property.
I found this realty listing-https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/2150-Road-E_Redwood-Valley_CA_95470_M12351-23035
Also, in what you posted in MTC there appears to be a unit or apartment number after the street address, #309, but I cannot find that there is any kind of multiple unit dwellings on the property. As a matter of fact, after looking over county zoning maps, I believe this property has a RR1 designation which is Rural Residential 1 acre density. This means that the property cannot be divided to less than one acre per parcel and there can only be one residence on that acre. Perhaps there could be an auxiliary dwelling unit, too.
Obviously, something is fishy with the property purchase deal.
Upon Further examination:
Cooper's house number is 2150 but the address you wrote was 2170.
According to my search Cooper does not own 2170. Someone named Jay Albert Long owns it and according to the address report, the land is zoned VWAS wasteland/marshes.
The value of the property $419,975,00 stated in the post is in line with the value of Cooper's property at 2150 but the report for 2170 does not give any value to the land but the assessor's website values the land at $1,338.00.
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But wait there's more.
I did some searches through records at the Recorder's Office website. Cooper does own the property at 2150 Road E but there is no transfer of property from Long to Cooper. I was thinking if the properties were next door to each other that Cooper may have purchased Long's property for some reason. I'm not finding that Jay Albert Long has any property but there are a few properties that Jay H Long is associated with starting in the 1950's to the mid 1980's. Jay Albert could have inherited the property and not changed the deeds into his name because it would trigger a re-assessment and taxes would go up. It's legal to do that, you just file an affidavit of death when you go to sell the property and show that you have inherited the property. Apparently, the tax bills are going to Jay Albert and he is paying the $54 per year.
What is weird is that if you Google 2170 Road E 309 you get hits for a townhouse that sits on 6 acres.
Scroll down to the property history and it gives the value of the land for the last few years. This listing says Apt. 309.
Something is terribly screwed up.
The Assessor's info I sent previously gives an address of 2170 Rd 309, It leaves out the “E” but there is no Road 309 in Mendo County.
I have no idea why Joseph Cooper is mentioned in the agenda, he really doesn't have anything to do with this that I can see.
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MARK SCARAMELLA NOTES: I failed to put the quotes on the agenda item correctly yesterday. The agenda title quote should have ended with “…Price/Terms of Sale.” The rest of it was from a quick google search I did. That’s where the Cooper reference came from.
ACCORDING TO GOOGLE MAPS, the property is on the northeast corner of a cluster of dozens of residences a couple of miles east of Highway 101 and east of the upper reaches of the Russian River.
ALL OF WHICH IS INTERESTING, but we’re still in the dark about the reason the CEO is considering this residential purchase. If the Supervisors really believed in the “transparency” they frequently claim to support, they’d require the CEO to state the reason for the purchase in open/public discussion for comment and feedback. This is clearly an abuse of closed session which should only be used for sales negotiations and which makes the entire proposal suspect — even if it isn’t.
ONE OF MY FIRST memorable experiences as a reporter in Fort Bragg was seeing a dead person for the first time, outside a funeral. Seeing dead people is something you will probably end up doing if you stay a reporter long enough, in more ways than one.
It was a woman, who could have been drunk, or just laying in the shallow surf for some reason, except there was just the slightest trail of foam coming from the side of her mouth. That was the only thing that said she was gone.
She had been on her honeymoon. Her new husband had rented a 16-foot boat and taken her for a morning cruise up and down the shoreline. A 16-foot boat is very small, compared to the ocean.
It got foggy. He couldn't find the way back into Noyo Bay because he couldn't see. (The guy lived to tell about it). He came in close to shore to try to get his bearings and the boat got caught in the breakers and flipped. Neither wore lifejackets. He made it to a rock. She didn't.
To me the experience said something about the ocean, which is that it will dazzle you with beauty, but just as effortlessly take your life, for the least little mistake sometimes.
Every year probably half a dozen people drown in the ocean here, and there are probably 100 very close calls. There are a few dozen ocean rescues — all volunteer except the Coast Guard — without which several more people would probably die. What's always striking is how slim their margin of error was. One slip, one wrong turn, one bad decision.
Anyway, be careful on those rocks and cliffs and tidepools. I know even worse scared-straight stories, just not as romantic as that one. And I would not ever go out on the ocean in a boat, unless the person in charge had been doing it for a very long time. The old salts get surprised all the time, too. They just know what to do when that happens.
— Chris Calder
AV BREWING: We are celebrating, you guys! (Humane Society for Inland Mendocino.) We love our amazing community who always supports us! We couldn’t save lives without the amazing team lifting us up and we want to show you how much we appreciate you!
Join us at Anderson Valley Brewing Company June 26th from 1-5pm so we can thank you! All supporters, volunteers, fosters, staff and anyone who loves our homeless animals are welcome! Enjoy delicious bBBA, desserts, and live music. We hope to see you there!
SMALL IS BEAUTIFUL, AN EXCHANGE
The tactics by supporters of the Drell referendum are so unfortunate as it undermines both and could actually allow the expansion. The Small is Beautiful Mendocino referendum strikes only 38 words in the cannabis ordinance. One line that approves the 10% expansion of grows, with at least 10 acres, to cultivate 10% of the parcel size. NOTHING ELSE. No caps, no other provisions in the phase 3 ordinance, only the most contested, that being expansion. The referendum signing process begins June 23. After this process is complete an initiative is being prepared that will rewrite the cannabis ordinance. The BOS have not done their job even though they have spent more money and time on that issue than anything else in 5 years. The initiative will be written by residents, ranchers, small farmers, business owners, non growers, the community, not county policy makers who have been more concerned about revenue than the people they work for. But we need your help. Look for and sign the Small is Beautiful Mendocino referendum, take a petition and gather signatures share posts, talk to friends and family. For more info, email email@example.com, call the observer office at 7079846223, go to FB page Small is Beautiful Mendocino. Thanks
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Drell supporter email:
Hi Everyone! I hope you’re all enjoying summer! Many thanks to our firefighters, who have been expertly putting out small fires and keeping our world smoke-free. As you’ll see in a photo below, I had a too-close personal experience with fire recently when a burn pile someone thought was out flared back up.
Due to Saturday’s heat forecast, we are changing the time and place of the next signature-gathering training. It will take place on Saturday moning from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Low Gap Park (June 19). The spot has good shade and there is often a breeze. Temperatues should be manageable––in the low 90’s. Look for us at the tables in the entry area, near the play structure. (Directions: From N. State Street, go west on Low Gap Road. Crosst Bush St, go past the cemetery on your right. Look for Low Gap Park on the left, just past Ukiah Player’s Theater, and opposite Ukiah High School.) Bring hats, water, and maybe spritzer bottles?
Also, in case you’ve heard about a possible second referendum and want a reality check: yes, there is one, and it is supported mostly by cannabis growers who want larger cannabis fields than are currently allowed but don’t want the big corporate-sized grow allowed in the ordinance, and/or legacy growers who have been scared by county staff into believing they can’t get their state licenses under our existing cannabis ordinance (NOT true––if they have been responsive to communications from the county and otherwise qualify). This other referendum is called, "Small is Beautiful,” but “Small" is a LOT bigger than you think (one-acre grow sites as big as football fields instead of the 1/4-acre grows currently allowed.)
For now, I hope you will trust my judgment that the referendum I am working on night and day, Save Our Water, Wildlife, And Way of Life (SOWWW, pronounced “soh"), is the best choice for our county. We want to repeal the entire new Cannabis Expansion Ordinance in order to stop our county planners and supervisors from letting cannabis proliferate in the county without a countywide environmental impact report. We want to keep the beautiful, wildlife-rich, and water-poor rangelands that surround our inland valleys free of new cannabis grows and all the human impacts that come with them, and we don’t want to put even more decision-making power into the hands of an inexperienced planning staff and an overworked and under-qualified planning commission. In a future email I will say more and will correct misinformation put out by the supporters of the new referendum, but I just wanted to get this much out today.
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It's ironic that the backers of one potential referendum are complaining about the tactics of the other. Both have consistently fed the public a steady stream of misleading and false statements about Chapter 22.18 and the impact it will have on neighbors and the environment. Chapter 22.18 will require a Major Use Permit, notification to neighbors, referral to about two dozen state and local agencies for review and comment (including local fire agencies, local water districts and CDFW), site specific environmental review, analysis of cumulative impacts and a Public Hearing where everyone may be heard. At the end of the Public Hearing the Planning Commission may approve the application as submitted, deny the application outright or approve it with additional conditions to protect the environment and/or the community. Anyone not satisfied with the decision has the right to appeal. Anyone not satisfied with the outcome of the appeal has the right to challenge the decision in court. Finally, the applicant will not be able to begin growing cannabis until they have received a permit from the County AND a State Annual License. NONE of these protections exist in the current ordinance.
The opponents don't even know what they are objecting to. Chapter 22.18 is not a "Phase 3 ordinance" but an entirely new ordinance that adopts a stringent Use Permit system for legal cannabis cultivation. The current unworkable ordinance has 3 phases. Implementation of Phase 3 of the current ordinance has been put on hold while the Board considers adoption of the proposed Chapter 22.18 which will replace the current ordinance, including Phase 3. If Chapter 22.18 is NOT adopted it will mean that Phase 3 of the current ordinance with all it's faults, including no notice to the neighbors, no referral and comment by agencies, and no Public Hearing, will take effect.
In addition to replacing the current unworkable ordinance with Chapter 22.18 which has real protections for the neighbors and the environment, the Supervisors have also directed dramatically stepped up oversight and enforcement and are providing the resources necessary to fund it.
REDWOOD EMPIRE FOOD BANK Continues To Feed Surge Of Struggling North Coast Residents
David Goodman, CEO of Redwood Empire Food Bank, runs the largest food bank in Northern California, serving Sonoma, Mendocino, Lake, Humboldt and Del Norte counties.
HOE ROAD. Never heard of it, but curious, I asked George Hollister, a resident of Comptche and our go to guy on questions about that area, George responding, “Hoe Road is in the Orr Springs, Montgomery Woods vicinity. Not really Comptche. And to the people in that area, Ukiah is “town,” and not Fort Bragg. Cannabis is king, and has been for the last 40 years. Tom Madden lives very close to where Hoe Road takes off from Orr Springs Road.”
LOOKING much thinner and generally worse for the effort of eluding constant searches for him, Elk's famous fugitive, Red Beard, popped up again last week in the same Cameron Road home that he burglarized a month ago, setting off a joint CHP-Sheriff's Department search for him.
“On 06-14-2021 at approximately 5:00 PM the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office received a report of a burglary occurring at a residence located in the 3000 block of Cameron Road in Elk, California. The homeowner was away from the residence and noticed the presence of a person who appeared to be William Allan Evers inside the residence based upon live-time footage from a security camera. It should be noted this was the same residence that Evers was believed to have burglarized on 05-12-2021 which resulted in the officer involved shooting documented later in this press release…”
A SMALL ARMY — shades of Bassler! — was mobilized to run Evers to ground: “Due to the notable public safety risks associated with responding to the residence, the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office requested additional specialized SWAT personnel from the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office, Humboldt County Sheriff's Office, Lake County Sheriff's Office, Santa Rosa Police Department and Mendocino County Multi-Agency SWAT team.”
CHUCK DUNLAP commented last week on the infamous fascist rising of January 6th in Washington: “Oh, come on James [Marmon] and Bruce [MeEwen]: "The Democrats just tried to set up a bipartisan commission to fully investigate this whole matter. But the Republicans voted against it and killed it. God knows there are many facts about this whole thing that have not been fully investigated yet, but Tucker Carlson and Revolver News (!!!) are not the unbiased investigators who will gather all the facts and provide the nation with an honest report.”
MARMON cited the Fox News bloviator, Carlson and Revolver News, neither of which I've ever seen. Those two dubious sources had apparently claimed the FBI was involved in the Jan 6 mob action in DC. I merely commented that the FBI, since its inception, had been infiltrating and attempting to subvert the American Left.
OF COURSE the FBI was involved in Jan 6, not as participants but as monitors and handlers of its snitch network who were involved. And they certainly would have known that some of the morons they were monitoring would be armed and dangerous.
TRADITIONALLY, the Feds set people up for felonies, thus solidifying their fearsome reputation among the credulous as ace sleuths. The FBI is a political police force. Always has been. Talk up political violence and you get federal police attention and, in my experience as a young subversive with his very own FBI file — they placed me at the famous Selma March of '65 when in fact I was in Borneo with the Peace Corps — I earned my FBI attention solely on the basis of my associations, at a time in the early sixties when the Bay Area civil rights movement involved a few communists from the old CPUSA. (The old joke was that half the people in the CP were FBI agents.) The Bay Area's Congress On Racial Equality was a reform movement, totally non-violent, but J. Edgar, a stone racist, spent his professional life complicating the lives of black activists, libeling Martin Luther King, among other leaders. My youngest brother was also the object of FBI interest for similar reasons to mine plus his two years in federal prison for refusing to register for the draft. Quick anecdote: One day two agents showed up at my brother's apartment to ask him if he had any guns. They apparently saw him as a potential assassin. One of the agents, noting his refusal to register for the draft, asked, “Mr. Anderson, would you fight if Mexico invaded the United States?” Bro answered, “No, but I will if Canada does.” The two G-men had themselves a real head scratcher.
NOT TO UNDERESTIMATE the Hoovers, especially now with all the techno-means of surveillance, but of course they're on the American fascisti big time, especially after January the 6th. Half this country's restive population is mobilized behind an implausible fuhrer in a country armed to its eyeballs so, natch, the FBI will be infiltrating and setting up people to commit felonies, as I suspect they've done in Michigan with those camo-clad fantasists who were allegedly plotting to kidnap the governor. Prediction: The Michigan case will be tossed for lack of evidence other than that provided by the FBI snitch in the group.
CLOSER TO HOME, it was clear that the FBI was working in Mendocino County in the Redwood Summer period because, windy Earth First!ers, including Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney, were publicly advocating industrial sabotage, a federal crime.
I WON'T BORE YOU with further opinions about the FBI in Mendo, but in that 1990 period an agent of theirs named Fain, was revealed to have encouraged an Earth First! team to blow up a power installation in the Arizona desert. When the naive Luddites went out to do it — Gotcha! And off to the federal pen they went.
IN THE CURRENT edition of the New York Review of Books, a piece by Mark Danner, “The Insurgent Element,” refers to the Jan 6 event as a “coup.” Seem from the cooling station here in Boonville it wasn't even an attempted coup given its disorganization, but Danner raises some interesting points, including the fact that it isn't known what Trump was doing between the time he whipped up the mob to storm Congress and the suspicious lag time it took the feds to call out the troops. But given the on-rush of ominous events, and the pure numbers of estranged citizens, the police agency formed in the early part of the last century by a man who spent his evenings in a cocktail dress, will be spending a lot of time and money monitoring fat guys with guns.
MEET YER DAD
Fathers Day BBQ at Caspar Community Center Sunday, June 20, 1-5pm
Free admission. Live music. Beer & Wine Bar, a raffle with prizes, and plenty of space for the kids to play.
Organic Chicken BBQ or Vegie Skewers with Garlic Bread or GF Cornbread and choice of two sides - Quinoa Salad, Baked Beans, Caspar Greens Salad or Baby Potatoes, Green Bean, and Cherry tomato Salad ($25) plus desserts and snacks for the kids.
Annie Lee, firstname.lastname@example.org
DRIP BY DRIP
It’s all very well for public entities to urge residents to be water wise. I lived through the Marin County droughts of the 1970s and ’80s and now the latest ones living in Sebastopol. I have honed my residential water behavior to a point that I get anxious whenever I hear water running for any reason. A normal shower for me is 5 gallons. Short of letting all my trees and plants die, there is nothing left to for me to do.
I suggest that all the powers that be in Sonoma County and California demand that agriculture and industries be water wise. Residents cannot catch enough water by putting buckets in every shower in the state to fix this. These types of measures are just more political/drought theater. Just another buck passed to the consumer instead of to industries that are usually responsible for these crises.
On Wednesday, June 16, 2021 at about 7:45 P.M., a Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputy observed a male acting suspiciously in the 300 block of Empire Drive in Ukiah.
The Deputy noticed the male was associated with a vehicle parked nearby.
The Deputy contacted the male, who initially provided a fake name. After further investigation, the male was positively identified as Michael Munoz, 32, of Santa Rosa.
A records check on Munoz through Sheriff's Office Dispatch revealed Munoz was on Post Release Community Supervision (PRCS) in Sonoma County. Munoz also had an outstanding felony warrant for his arrest for violating the terms of his PRCS.
Munoz was in possession of a methamphetamine smoking pipe within his vehicle. Also in the vehicle were several checks issued to multiple people and businesses throughout Sonoma County. These checks were suspected to be stolen, fraudulently written for high dollar amounts and authorized with forged signatures.
Based on the Deputy's investigation, Munoz was arrested for possessing fraudulent checks, violating the terms of his PRCS and for the outstanding Sonoma County arrest warrant.
Munoz was booked into the Mendocino County Jail, to be held on a No Bail status pursuant to the Sonoma County warrant.
VISITING FROM SACRAMENTO....
On Thursday, June 17, 2021 at about 1:20 A.M., a Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputy conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle in the 7000 block of North State Street in Redwood Valley.
The Deputy contacted the driver, identified as Nicholas Rea, 37, of Sacramento, and his female passenger.
While speaking with Rea, the Deputy saw controlled substance paraphernalia sitting in the center console of the vehicle. The Deputy also saw a container he knew was commonly used to store heroin. Through conversations the Deputy learned there was heroin within the container.
A records check on Rea through Sheriff's Office Dispatch advised Rea was on probation out of Sacramento County for Vehicle Theft. Rea was also determined to have multiple previous felony convictions, prohibiting him from owning or possessing firearms.
Through further conversations the Deputy learned there was a loaded firearm beneath Rea's seat.
A search of the vehicle and Rea's person was conducted. During the search, the Deputy located suspected heroin, suspected methamphetamine, controlled substance paraphernalia and a loaded, .38 caliber revolver.
Based on his investigation, the Deputy arrested Rea for being a Convicted Felon in Possession of a Firearm, Possession of a Controlled Substance while Armed with a Loaded Firearm, Carrying a Loaded Handgun not Registered, Possession of Controlled Narcotic, Possession of Controlled Substance, andPossession of Controlled Substance Paraphernalia)
Rea was booked into the Mendocino County Jail, to be released after the booking process on zero bail pursuant to COVID-19 bail schedule set forth by the State of California Judicial Council.
PETE SLEEPING IT OFF WHEN...
On Saturday, June 19, 2021 at about 1:10 AM, a Mendocino County Deputy was alerted to a male subject sleeping in front of a business located in the 100 block of Main Street in Point Arena.
The Deputy was also advised the male subject possibly had a warrant for his arrest.
The Deputy responded to the area and located the male subject. The Deputy recognized the male to be Pete Rose Jr., 27, of Point Arena.
The Deputy confirmed Rose was the subject of two active Mendocino County arrest warrants.
Rose Jr. was subsequently arrested pursuant to a felony burglary warrant and misdemeanor indecent exposure warrant.
Rose Jr. was booked into the Mendocino County Jail where he was to be held in lieu of $25,000 bail.
HERE COMES CODE ENFORCEMENT — WOOF WOOF
Action Date: 06/16/21
Location: 3500 Block of Laytonville Dos Rios Road
In the third week of June of 2021, The Mendocino County Code Enforcement Division conducted an investigation regarding non-permitted commercial cannabis cultivation at the listed location.
The Code Enforcement investigation confirmed that commercial cannabis cultivation was occurring in non-permitted structures without a County Cultivation Permit or State Cultivation License. The responsible party refused to abate the 450 cannabis plants being cultivated and Code Enforcement subsequently issued Administrative Citations with penalties as follows:
1.) $520 per day for non-permitted structures used for commercial cannabis cultivation.
2.) $1,000 per day for violations of the Mendocino County Cannabis Cultivation Ordinance.
3.) $90,000 (450 plants x $200 per plant) one time penalty for non-permitted commercial cannabis cultivation.
Code Enforcement intends to take additional action as needed to achieve compliance.
The Code Enforcement Division receives all Cannabis and General Code Violation complaints in the unincorporated areas of the County. Complaints can be made in person at our offices or by visiting our website at: www.mendocinocounty.org/government/codeenforcement to file an online complaint. Cannabis specific complaints can also be filed by calling the Cannabis Complaint Hotline at: (844) 421-WEED (9333).
(Mendocino County Code Enforcement Presser)
COAST DEMOCRATIC CLUB IN-PERSON MEETING July 1, 2021
Our First 2021 In-Person Meeting
Caspar Community Center Backyard
Thursday, July 1, 2021, 5:00 - 7:00 PM
All Politics Is Local. Let’s Talk With Ted
District 5 Supervisor Ted Williams
Updates on Recent Club Actions - Where Do Go From Here?
Sheriffs Office Audit
Jackson Demonstration State Forest Logging Moratorium
Grassroots Institute Climate Budget Proposal
County Re-Districting Process
Plus Update on Anti-Recall Campaign
Please Bring Your Own Chair - Snacks & Drinks Provided
No Masks Necessary for Those Who Are Fully Vaccinated
We Have a Lot to do. Let’s Get Going!
CATCH OF THE DAY, June 19, 2021
JENNIFER BOWMAN, Ukiah. Failure to appear.
SETH COSTA, Ukiah. Stolen vehicle.
MARISSA FRENIER, San Jose/Ukiah. Failure to appear.
CHARLES GIELOW III, Willits. Unemployment insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit perjury, smuggling controlled substance or liquor into jail, conspiracy.
LUIZ GONZALEZ JR., Covelo. DUI, manufacturing/importing short-barreled rifle, felon-addict with firearm, under influence with firearm, suspended license for DUI.
ELIZABETH GUERRERO, Ukiah. DUI.
JEREMIAH HEILIG, Willits. Paraphernalia, probation revocaiton.
BRADLEY VANMATRE, Windsor/Ukiah. DUI.
MARK OGLESBY, Willits. DUI, child endangerment.
MARCIE QUESTONI, Petaluma/Ukiah. Animal cruelty.
MICHAEL RASCHKA, Oroville/Ukiah. Parole violation, failure to appear.
PETER ROSE JR., Point Arena. Burglary, indecent exposure.
GREGORY THOMPKINS, Ukiah. Camping in Ukiah. Storing camping paraphernalia, trespassing.
THE GIANTS ARE THE BEST TEAM IN BASEBALL and that doesn’t have to make sense
by Dieter Kurtenbach
SF Giants: All the Giants do is win and it's time for baseball fans to drop their preconceived notions about the team and embrace what's happening.
What more do you need to see from the San Francisco Giants?
What more could they possibly do at this point to make you believe?
We’re more than 40 percent of the way through the 2021 season and no team in Major League Baseball has more wins or a better winning percentage.
All the Giants seem to do is win.
Does it make perfect sense? No sir.
But there have been a number of moments this year when the Giants have told us what they are about. It’s time to believe them.
And if you’re still holding on to your preseason expectation of mediocrity, it’s time to drop it — unlike that other shoe you think will hit the ground.
While I doubt that the Giants are going to win the 103 games they’re currently on pace to claim, I do think that they can play .500 baseball from this point forward. And if they do that, they’ll win 90 games.
Honestly, who saw that coming?
I can appreciate that some will view this column as ill-timed. It’s easy to say nice things about a team when they’re coming off a four-game home sweep of the absolutely worthless Diamondbacks.
But it’s not like the Giants are creating their own schedule like a college football team. And it’s not as if they don’t have 13 games left against Arizona this season.
And don’t forget that one of those games against Arizona this week was lost. An experiment with an opener failed miserably and put the Giants in a 7-0 hole before they came to the plate in the bottom of the second inning.
Five runs and Mike Yastrzemski’s eighth-inning grand slam later, the Giants won.
There’s a gumption to this team — a belief that might not exist on the outside but appears unimpeachable from the inside.
Think back to the Giants’ series with the Nationals last weekend. The San Francisco offense was reeling — they looked hapless. They scored three runs in four games. And yet the Giants left Washington with a four-game series split.
That’s what good teams do. They might not have everything working for them, but they find ways to win games. They find ways to not lose series.
I could go on about how great the Giants’ starting pitching has been or how they lead the National League in home runs. I could explain how the team’s bullpen has turned it around and how outstanding a job Farhan Zaidi and Scott Harris have done in finding depth for this team that has been ravaged by injury. I might not think that managers matter much in baseball, but Gabe Kapler certainly is not doing a bad job at the helm — he’s Secretariat at the Belmont Stakes right now in the Manager of the Year race.
But I think it’s a bit more fun to keep a bit of mystique around the Giants’ success. There’s something distinctly Giants about having a great team that no one can quite understand. After all, three World Series champion banners fly in center field at Oracle Park for teams that defied all expectations.
I’m not saying anything like that is in the cards for the Giants this season, but there is, without a doubt, some strange voodoo inside that stadium.
Whether that or something else entirely is at play, I say it’s time to give in. It might not be totally explicable and they might not keep winning at a rate this exceptional, but there is something special happening with this team. Embrace it and this strange, winning summer ahead.
(Courtesy, East Bay Times / ParadisePost)
JEFFREY GOLDBERG INTERVIEWS GEORGE PACKER (author of “Last Best Hope: America in Crisis and Renewal.”)
Jeff: You’ve written entire books on this general subject, but try to answer this question in a couple of lines: What causes you to worry the most about America’s future as a unified, coherent country?
George: We Americans don’t just disagree with one another. We don’t just have different values, narratives, and perceptions of truth. We actually see one another as moral threats, incompatible with all that we consider good, and we fantasize about a country in which the threats are no longer around. Not to be melodramatic, but you can recognize this kind of thinking in countries that fall into civil war.
Jeff: You think we’re actually heading to civil war?
George: Not likely, not with violence on a large scale. More like a cold civil war that continues to erode democracy, make every election seem existential, and prevent us from solving our major problems, with long-term decline.
Jeff: Are there, in your mind, credible, discernible off-ramps?
George: I see three ways this could change. One is separation (not actual secession, but red and blue areas having more and more political autonomy). Another is conquest (one side wins a decisive majority). Neither of these seems very tenable. The third off-ramp is more complex but more feasible: government-led improvements in people’s lives, a reversal of the inequality that’s at the root of much of our disunion, along with socially binding ideas like universal national service and better K–12 education (civics!).
Jeff: Reversing “the inequality that’s at the root of our disunion” seems like a pretty big damn thing. But put that aside: How do you convince people that (a) selfless national service and (b) a universal civics agenda could, or should, be done?
George: Becoming more equal as Americans is a huge thing. What matters is that we start moving in the right direction—and I think in recent months we’ve begun. As for national service and universal civics (though not a national curriculum, which would probably self-destruct), they would take some explaining, some persuading. But I don’t think they’re impossible. Majorities of both Democrats and Republicans rate civic education as the single best way to strengthen American identity, and there’s a bipartisan bill in Congress to spend $1 billion on U.S. history and civics. Maybe Americans are beginning to grasp that a Thirty Years’ War between the red and the blue is not the best way to remain a strong democracy. Maybe there’s an untapped, even unconscious desire, especially among younger people, to be asked to do something larger than themselves. We’ll never know until we try.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
As an IT guy I am forced to deal with people who for lack of a better word are dumb as dirt.
A friend of mine also in IT at the same place once quipped to me about feeling at best average intelligence until he started working where we work.
He now feels far superior to most of the people we work with.
I would hazard a guess most of them are far below 100 but most are above 80 as they can in fact spell their own names.
The company likes to put together various howtos for people to fix easy computer problems but if the steps are more than two or three most people simply can’t follow along or refuse.
Humanity is in sad shape as everything continues to move at such a rapid pace that most people now need to know as much about computers as I did as an IT guy back in the mid 90’s.
MEET THE CENSORED: BRET WEINSTEIN
by Matt Taibbi
On May 23, 2017, not so long ago in real time but seemingly an eternity given the extraordinary history we’ve lived through since, a group of 50-odd students at Evergreen State College arrived at the classroom of a biology professor named Bret Weinstein, demanding his resignation. He stepped into the hall to talk, believing he could work things out.
He was wrong. Weinstein’s offense had been to come to work during an event called the “Days of Absence,” in which white students, staff, and faculty were asked to stay home. This was an inverted version of a longstanding Evergreen event of the same name that, based on a Douglas Turner Ward play, invited students of color to stay home voluntarily, to underscore their value to the community. As he would later explain in the Wall Street Journal, Weinstein thought this was a different and more negative message, and refused to comply. When that group of 50 students he’d never met arrived at his door and accused him of being a racist, he assumed he could find common ground, especially when his own students (including students of color) spoke on his behalf.
“I was one of Evergreen’s most popular professors,” he later testified to the House of Representatives. “I had Evergreen’s version of tenure. Did they really think they could force my resignation based on a meritless accusation? They did think that, and they were right.”
Weinstein was a Bernie Sanders supporter who described his politics as unabashedly liberal, even leftist. Like many, he’d grown up steeped in the imagery of sixties protest culture, probably imagined himself on its side, and therefore thought he could find solidarity with protesters. He didn’t realize was that he was the canary in a coal mine for a new movement that understood free speech as a stalking horse for the exercise of institutional power. When Weinstein opened his mouth to defend himself, what the crowd heard was him attempting to exercise authority, and they exercised theirs back.
They’d won over Evergreen’s new president, George Bridges, who refused to intercede in Weinstein’s behalf and later even asked college police to stand down, when protesters began stopping traffic and searching cars for someone, presumably Weinstein. The police told Weinstein they couldn’t guarantee his safety, and ultimately he was, in fact, forced to resign.
Frequently portrayed as the involuntary protagonist of the first of a series of campus free speech crises, in fact Weinstein was one of the first to understand that a rollback of “free speech” in cases like his was incidental to the larger aims of the movement.
“What is occurring on college campuses is about power and control. Speech is impeded as a last resort,” he told the House Oversight Committee.
He described the new movement as like a cult, in which members sincerely believed they were acting to stop oppression, but leaders understood they were simply “turning the tables” on oppression. They were exercising authority to achieve what may be presented as social justice goals, while the actual end is the authority itself, with the teardown of due process and other protections a critical part of the picture. “This committee,” he said, “should take my tale as cautionary.”
Fast forward three years. Weinstein and his wife Heather Heying have become prominent figures in independent media, co-hosting a popular podcast called DarkHorse. Identified in the New York Times as one of the main dramatis personae of the so-called “Intellectual Dark Web,” a group of heterodox intellectuals not aligned with the traditional right or left, he appeared for a time to find a home on YouTube. Maybe he would never go back to academia, but this seemed a more secure replacement. After all it’s one thing to be dependent on the whims of a college president or even a faculty board, but surely there’s safety in subscriber numbers?
Not so fast. As detailed in “Why Has ‘Ivermectin’ Become a Dirty Word?,” Weinstein is on the verge of becoming one of the more prominent casualties to a censorship movement that it’s hard not to see as part of a wider Evergreening of America. He and Heying’s two YouTube channels have been hit with multiple warnings for two brands of speech offenses, and are on the verge of having their business shut down entirely as a result (YouTube has a “three strikes and you’re out” policy). One offense involves interviews with the likes of Dr. Pierre Kory about the potential benefits of the repurposed drug ivermectin, and the other involves interviews with guests like Dr. Robert Malone, inventor of the mRNA vaccine technology used in the Covid-19 vaccines. One video with Malone this week had 587,331 views before it was shut down. In the years since Weinstein left Evergreen, the American cultural and political establishment has undergone a change in thinking, tracking with the warning Weinstein delivered to congress. The Trump election inspired a loss of faith in democracy, Charlottesville defamed speech rights, and Russiagate was an ongoing argument against due process, with many of the same people who opposed Dick Cheney’s spy state suddenly seeing themselves as aligned with the FBI, the NSA, and the CIA in the war on Trump.
Weinstein in his testimony talked about a movement that targeted the liberal concepts that traditionally bound us together, one being the “marketplace of ideas.” By 2021, the “marketplace of ideas” was regularly being portrayed as a trick, a tool for repression designed to conceal the fact that, as the New York Times put it last year, “good ideas do not always triumph in a marketplace of ideas.”
Thus instead of argument and debate, many now believe we should use force and influence to achieve objectives. This is just what Weinstein described at Evergreen: eschewing argument, accumulating power for its own sake instead. It’s in light of this cultural shift that we’ve seen a movement in favor of censorship, with erstwhile opponents of corporations posturing as libertarians, filling social media with arguments about how private companies should be free to do what they want.
When Facebook, Apple, YouTube and Spotify teamed up to kick Alex Jones off the Internet in the summer of 2018, most of the left cheered. The obvious fear, however, was that moderators would develop mission creep. The DarkHorse incidents show we’re there. Whether or not one agrees with Weinstein about the efficacy of ivermectin, or the idea that the Covid-19 vaccines carry unreported dangers, anyone who follows his show recognizes that his is nearly the opposite of an Alex Jones act. He and Heying’s shows are neither frivolous nor abusive, and they clearly make an effort to be evidence-based, interviewing credentialed authorities, typically about subjects ignored by the corporate press.
This is exactly what independent/alternative media is for: tackling third rail subjects that, for one reason or another, can’t find a home in traditional media. Often, it takes scoops initially dismissed as silly conspiracies by what ABC reporter Jon Karl recently described as “serious people,” a classic example being Gary Webb’s famous CIA cocaine trafficking story.
A Time magazine editor in rejecting that one told reporters on that “if this story were about the Sandinistas and drugs, you’d have no trouble getting it in the magazine,” while Newsweek years later called a U.S. Senator, John Kerry, a “randy conspiracy buff” for saying the Contras in Nicaragua were engaged in drug trafficking. Only years later, in the small San Jose Mercury-News, did the story come out, and even then it took years before the coke-for-guns tale truly broke through in popular media.
With the Covid-19 story, Weinstein and Heying were among the first to openly consider the so-called “lab leak hypothesis” of how the pandemic began. In fact, in the days before people like Dr. Anthony Fauci appeared to change their minds about the theory’s feasibility, and before beloved mainstream figures like Jon Stewart declared that if there was “an outbreak of chocolatey goodness near Hershey, Pennsylvania” you’d know “it’s the fucking chocolate factory,” Weinstein and Heyer were roundly denounced as Covid-19 misinformation peddlers.
In January, after they went on Real Time With Bill Maher, they were blasted for pushing a “Steve Bannon Wuhan Lab Covid Conspiracy” by a Daily Beast writer who mostly seemed upset that Weinstein and Heying had soiled Maher with the ick of unconventional thinking. However, since conventional wisdom on the lab leak theory changed, criticism on that front has died down, especially now that platforms like Facebook have announced they “will no longer remove the claim that COVID-19 is man-made or manufactured from our apps.” Still, the shift in consensus thinking about lab origin has only seemed to accelerate the vigilance about ivermectin and other issues.
This is a significant moment in the history of American media. If a show with the audience that Weinstein and Heying have can be put out of business this easily, it means that independent media going forward will either have to operate outside the major Internet platforms, or give up its traditional role as a challenger of mainstream narratives. There are plenty of people out there who take a sarcastic view of the “Intellectual Dark Web,” just as they roll their eyes at lots of YouTubers or Instagram stars or even the “Substackerati,” but even those critics should realize the seriousness of this moment, not just for this show, but for all media.
I reached out to Weinstein about his fight with YouTube:
TK: Can you sketch out the structure of your media business?
Weinstein: Heather and I have been doing livestreams since March, 2020. They began as bi-weekly and were originally focused on COVID. The topic quickly broadened, and streams were reduced to once a week in September, 2020. We have done 83 livestreams as of June 5th. Livestreams consist of 1-2 hours of presentation and discussion between Heather and Bret, followed by 1-2 hours of audience Q and A.
The remainder of the podcasts are discussions between me, Bret, and one or more guests. Some have been done in studio, others over zoom. The maximum number of guests was The Black Intellectual Round Table with seven guests. All guest discussions have been taped, with two recent exceptions (with Pierre Kory, and Steve Kirsch/Robert Malone), and generally the content is not edited with respect to substance. The main channel has 329,000 subscribers. Revenue on the main channel is generated by YouTube ads at the beginning of the podcast, by Superchat questions, and recently we have done spoken ads for carefully chosen sponsors. Podcasts also drive subscribership on each of our Patreon pages, and channel/podcast merchandise is also available from Teespring linked through YouTube. The clips channel was created in July 2020, and consists of clips made by a video editor/producer who watches our podcasts and selects highlights. Subscribership on the clips channel is rapidly growing and stands at 182,000. All revenue on the clips channel is from YouTube ads.
The main livestreams (but not the Q&As), and the podcasts that I have with other guests, are also uploaded to audio-only podcast platforms. Combining YouTube and podcast downloads, episodes tend to get above 200,000 views/listens each. The audio-only podcast has reliably been in the top 10 in Apple’s “Science podcasts” category, and goes in and out of top 100 in “overall” podcasts. Currently it is #77.
TK: Tech company executives have consistently said they intervene on this subject only for safety reasons, to prevent misleading information that might cause someone to avoid a lifesaving treatment. What is your answer to that? Are you an anti-vaxxer? Could a reasonable person infer from your broadcasts that you're recommending that adults not get vaccinated?
Weinstein: We are biologists engaging material that is inherently evolutionary. Our upcoming book is on the problem caused by the interface of people with novel technology for which we are not evolutionarily prepared. No one is trained in even a majority of the disciplines relevant to the COVID Pandemic. Virologists aren’t clinicians, aren’t epidemiologists, aren’t evolutionary biologists, aren’t pharmacologists, aren’t data scientists. We state repeatedly that we are not medical doctors and are not making recommendations, but we are sharing our view of scientific material that we are qualified to analyze.
It is true that some may become hesitant about the Covid vaccines from our discussions. That may cost lives, as we have taken pains to point out repeatedly. We also surely save lives. For example, it is especially likely that DarkHorse viewers who have had COVID would skip being vaccinated, greatly reducing their risk of adverse reactions without increasing their risk of future COVID.
The question is one of net effect. We have been way ahead of official guidance throughout the pandemic, and we have been very sharp in our criticism of those who have treated SARS-CoV2 casually. We have clearly sobered many up about the issue. Our refrain has been that although the case fatality rate from COVID is moderate, the damage to the body from a case of COVID—even if mild—is often substantial and likely implies reduced longevity. And we have given prescient advice on prevention. We were extremely early in recognizing that conducting business outside, opening windows (especially in cars), keeping conversation with strangers brief, wearing masks, removing masks outside, spending time in the sun, supplementing with vitamin-D, all have protective effects.
The best defense of what we have done on DarkHorse is simply to compare our prevention model with the official guidance. It is the low quality and slow improvement in the official model that constitutes the greatest danger. It takes far too long for official guidance to catch up to the evidence.
As to the questions of whether we are vaccinated and/or would get vaccinated again: we (and our children) are more fully vaccinated than most people, in part due to the exposures that our (former) jobs as tropical biologists gave us. We are, for instance, vaccinated against yellow fever, typhoid, and rabies. We are not vaccinated against Covid, and do not intend to get vaccinated against Covid (unless, perhaps, a traditional vaccine were to be produced).
TK: Jon Stewart made the lab-leak hypothesis mainstream last week. You were one of the first media figures to try to bring attention in that direction. What was the response when you raised your own concerns, and what's your reaction now, given the way that discussion has suddenly become permissible?
Weinstein: The lessons of the lab leak are many. Of course, those of us who could see that the official narrative was wildly inconsistent with the evidence were aggressively stigmatized. Many were driven to self silence. And the official narrative could easily have held, causing dissenters to be recorded in history as cranks. This is standard for such a situation.
Unfortunately, there is no appetite for extrapolating from the lab leak to other COVID questions. Today Tony Fauci announced a multi-billion dollar initiative to search for new drugs to treat COVID, and Carl Zimmer dutifully reported the story with excitement in the NYT, even as the revelations about Fauci’s apparent corruption and responsibility continue to surface. There was no mention of the danger implied in new drugs and EUAs. The idea of repurposed drugs doing the job safely and cheaply is elided with the baseless assertion that a search for useful existing drugs was essentially fruitless. There is simply no update to the public’s trust in authority based on the lessons of the lab leak, no recognition that officials are often mistaken, or lying or both.
And that’s the core of the problem with YouTube’s policy. Official consensus has been frequently laughable in the context of Covid, often with deadly consequences. If ever there was a moment for scientific generalists to help their audience understand the evidence, this is it. Consider this bizarre fact. In Sept. 2020, Politifact “fact checked” the lab leak hypothesis and declared it a “pants on fire lie.”
Politifact was forced to walk that conclusion back in May 2021. My flow chart had a lab leak at almost 90% as of April 2020. In June of 2021 Politifact fact checked” the assertion (made on the DarkHorse Podcast by Dr. Robert Malone, inventor of mRNA vaccine technology) that “spike protein is cytotoxic.” They declared it false. How did they end up the arbiter of factual authority in this case? Shouldn’t the presumption be with Dr. Malone, and with DarkHorse?
TK: Don't tech companies and health officials have a responsibility to try to prevent dangerous speech during an emergency like a pandemic? Do you feel that any discussion on a topic like this should be allowed, or do you believe there should be a minimal factual standard? What's the proper way to regulate this dilemma in your opinion?
Weinstein: I don’t think it works this way. Once you create the right to shut down speech for the good of the public, that tool becomes a target of capture and true speech is silenced. Furthermore, humans are stuck with the fact that heterodoxy exists at the fringe with the cranks. No one has a way to sort one from the other, except in retrospect. So if you regulate the cranks out of existence, you also shut down meaningful progress. The price of that is incalculable. Heather had a great piece on this published recently (What If We’re Wrong? In the on-line magazine Areo).
TK: Even if there are serious risks to your business, do you intend to stop talking about the subject?
Weinstein: Of course not. Lives are on the line. Too many have been lost already. This is an absolute moral obligation. That doesn’t mean we won’t pick battles strategically, but even loss of our channels is acceptable if the madness surrounding COVID treatment and prevention can be stopped.
A TINY MISTAKE IN THE SKY.
The recording of last night's (2021-06-18) Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio show on 107.7fm KNYO-LP Fort Bragg is right here: https://tinyurl.com/KNYO-MOTA-0441
Besides all that, at https://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com you'll find a fresh batch of dozens of links to not necessarily radio-useful but nonetheless worthwhile items I set aside for you while gathering the show together. Such as, for instance:
Here's an image to think about when you feel yourself ramping up to throw a tantrum at someone about something they can't help but do because they're mostly stuck being who they are, just as you are. All the trillion stars in this picture, most with planets, many with life, all together are just a little fuzzy dot in the sky, one of billions and billions of such dots, and our nearly-million-mile-wide sun is not even a dot to anybody a ten-thousandth of the way to the galaxy in this photo, and if the entire Milky Way were to somehow go black this instant, which it couldn't, but if it did, creatures of a planet hidden in the photo couldn't possibly know about it for twenty-five million years, because that's how long it takes light (or dark) to get there. Our entire stellar group is barely a quantum fluctuation in the noise floor of the cosmic background hum. Maybe the person doesn't know or care how to pronounce your name or what bathroom to use or which powerful crook to promote and which to vilify or which direction to bang his forehead on the floor to pray on which day, and so on. Maybe everyone is wrong to make an unpleasant fuss out of every petty annoyance. And if so, so what? Make your art. Try to be kind. Enjoy the ride.
Fluffy bees cutely crashing into each other.
And whenever I see the word /warning/ I hear, in my head, Doctor Yueh mutter, "The stains become a warning." Even if there are no stains anywhere, yet. And then I hear Lady Atreides say, anguished and furious, "A million deaths are not enough for Yueh!" There will be stains soon, though, when the duck plows through a dozen henchmen and walks in on the Russian druglord who killed her egg. The white walls will be drenched in blood. Drenched.
That's it for now. Email me your written work and I'll read it Friday night on the radio on the very next MOTA.
Marco McClean, email@example.com, https://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com
MORE THAN 41,000 PEOPLE HAVE SIGNED PETITIONS to stop Jeff Bezos from returning to Earth after his trip to space next month
by Kate Duffy
More than 41,000 people have signed petitions calling to stop Jeff Bezos from returning to Earth after he blasts into space next month.
Bezos, founder of space-exploration firm Blue Origin, said on June 7 that he and his brother Mark Bezos will fly into space aboard the New Shepard rocket on July 20 — the company's first human flight.
Three days after Bezos' announcement, two petitions were launched to try and prevent the billionaire's re-entry to Earth. They have both garnered thousands of followers in just 10 days.
More than 23,000 people have signed one Change.org petition titled: "Do not allow Jeff Bezos to return to Earth."
"Billionaire's should not exist...on earth, or in space, but should they decide the latter they should stay there," the petition's description said.
Some signatories gave a reason for signing the petition, which included comments such as "being let back into Earth is a privilege — not a right," and "Earth don't want people like Jeff, Bill [Gates], Elon [Musk] and other such billionaires."
Another petition, called "Petition To Not Allow Jeff Bezos Re-Entry To Earth," has accumulated more than 18,000 signatures and is quickly increasing.
Jose Ortiz, who set up the petition, said in the description that Bezos is "an evil overlord hellbent on global domination."
"The fate of humanity is in your hands," Ortiz also wrote.
Both petitions are aiming to get 25,000 signatures, making them two of the top signed petitions on Change.org, according to the website.
Bezos will take an 11-minute flight to the edge of space alongside his brother and the winner of the Blue Origin auction for a seat in the New Shepard spacecraft, which sold for $28 million. They'll be strapped into a dome-shaped capsule, which sits on top of the rocket booster.
Once New Shepard reaches the Kármán line — an imaginary boundary 62 miles (100 kilometers) above the Earth's surface — the capsule will separate from the booster, reenter the atmosphere, and float back down to Earth with the help of parachutes.
"I want to go on this flight because it's a thing I wanted to do all my life. It's an adventure — it's a big deal for me," Bezos said in a video posted to Instagram on June 7.
POP QUIZ FOR MCT READERS: What is a "bioretention facility"?