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Mendocino County Today: Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021

Sunny Day | 37 Cases | Death 89 | Covid Monthly | Philo Poplars | Millay Autumn | Boosting AV | Art Walk | Measure L | Film Screening | Low Pools | Swimming Hole | Harold/Maude | Gassy People | Weed Party | Trent Video | Ed Notes | California Trucking | Yesterday's Catch | SF Bashing | Problem Customer | Laughing Stock | Old Ukiah | Propaganda Media | Bank Note | Coming Attractions | Bob/Shell | Nuclear Industry | Green Beanery | Walk Home | Host Nations

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HIGH PRESSURE will allow for drier and warmer weather through Wednesday morning, with areas of sunshine for northwest California. The next front will bring more rain and some gusty southerly winds later on Wednesday, with showers lingering into Thursday. Periods of showery, damp weather will continue into the weekend, especially north of Cape Mendocino. (NWS)

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37 NEW COVID CASES and 1 death (since last Friday) reported in Mendocino County yesterday afternoon.

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A Mendocino County resident has passed away from COVID-19. Our thoughts are with all of their family and friends. 

Death #89: 74 year-old woman from the Ukiah area; fully vaccinated with severe comorbidities. 

Public Health asks all Mendocino County residents to think about the ways they are protecting themselves and their families from COVID-19. When in doubt, consult with and follow all CDC and CDPH guidance. Vaccination, masking, and social distancing remain the best tools for combating COVID-19. 

Fully vaccinated people over age 65 (or over age 50 with certain health conditions) should strongly consider getting a COVID-19 vaccine booster to improve immunity. Boosters should be given at least 6 months after completion of the initial Pfizer series. If you have questions about boosters, speak with your doctor, or call Public Health at 707-472-2759. To find the nearest vaccine clinic in your area, please visit the Public Health website at: 

(County Presser)

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229 / 9 (Jul)
392 / 8 (Aug)
260 / 2 (Sep)
210 / 2 (Oct)
420 / 2 (Nov)
964 / 4 (Dec)

876 / 11 (Jan)
382 / 5 (Feb)
131 / 3 (Mar)
82 / 2 (Apr)
194 / 1 (May)
164 / 1 (Jun)
323 / 2 (Jul)
1365 / 12 (Aug)
1107 / 20 (Sep)
519 / 5 (Oct)

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CATCH IT while it lasts, ladies and gentlemen, Mendocino County’s most vivid late fall beauty spot — the bridge at Indian Creek! 

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When reeds are dead and a straw to thatch the marshes,
And feathered pampas-grass rides into the wind
Like aged warriors westward, tragic, thinned
Of half their tribe, and over the flattened rushes,
Stripped of its secret, open, stark and bleak,
Blackens afar the half-forgotten creek,—
Then leans on me the weight of the year, and crushes
My heart. I know that Beauty must ail and die,
And will be born again,—but ah, to see
Beauty stiffened, staring up at the sky!
Oh, Autumn! Autumn!—What is the Spring to me? 

— Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950)

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FIRST FRIDAY ART WALK Ukiah, November 5, 2021 5-8pm

Emphasis on ART and WALK. Ukiah is a very walkable town.

Join artists and their hosts for an evening of art and music as you stroll from one venue to the next; each showcasing local art and artistry. Held in Historic Downtown Ukiah on the first Friday of each month, the First Friday Art Walk is the perfect way to relax your body, mind and soul. This enjoyable evening begins at 5:00 p.m. and promises to delight your senses; all while enjoying the company of others. For more information contact (707) 391-3664

Ukiah Branch Library 105 N Main Street

Join the Ukiah Branch Library to view an ongoing show, “Local Quilt Artists,” an exhibit by local quilting groups Mendocino Art Quilters and the Rag Tag Quilters. The pieces they share with the public are a mix of first rate art and traditionally themed quilts. Something for everyone to view, ponder, and wonder at. The Mendocino Art Quilters and the Rag Tag Quilters hope that the public will recognize the important place that textile art holds in our history and culture, while enjoying the vibrant colors and mix of art from our local artists. This exhibit will be on display through November & December Art Walk Ukiah on November 5th, 2021 and December 3rd, 2021. November’s Art Walk Ukiah will host live music by Elizabeth MacDougall, a book sale, and Take&Make Quilted Leaf Coaster to-go kits. The kits will be first come, first served and for ages 8+. This exhibit is free to the public, for all ages and sponsored by the Friends of the Ukiah Valley Library and Mendocino County Library. For more information, please contact the Ukiah Branch Library at 707-463-4490, or email

Grace Hudson Museum 431 S Main Street

Make the Museum one of your stops on Ukiah’s First Friday Art Walk. Our latest exhibition, *Thirty Years On: Liden, Magruder & Knight* will be on view. And we’ll be celebrating the opening of a popup exhibition in our Public Room, *Selected Works by Wayne Knight*. Discover more rarely-seen paintings by this beloved Ukiah Valley artist. The popup show runs from November 3 to 21. Also check out our core galleries and take a stroll in the Wild Gardens. Docent-guided tours of the Wild Gardens will also be available. We hope you will patronize one of Ukiah’s restaurants and eateries during your art walk.

Ukiah Valley Networking Agency 104 N School Street

Ukiah artist Janet Rosen presents a selection of portraits made during the past year and a half. She explains: When the pandemic closed everything down in March 2020, I had just completed and hung a major painting project, Conversing With The Dead, at Ukiah Valley Networking Agency and had a First Friday Artwalk reception. Like so many people, suddenly I was sheltering in place, with no idea of how long it might be or what to do with myself. Within a month, friends mentioned an April 30 Faces/30 Days drawing challenge created by a site called Sktchy. I enrolled and completed the course. Then I did another... and another... And now my practice continues. During a time of only seeing people masked, how wonderful to spend time with an array of human faces from around the world! My refuge and creative outlet has been this ongoing series of soft, expressive portraits from an online community of fellow artists - peers, some of whom have become my creative muses.

Art Center Ukiah and the Corner Gallery 201 S State Street

Our visiting artists in the front windows of the corner gallery will be members of the Mendocino County Art Association. Our guest artist will be Polly Palecek and the show in Art Center Ukiah will be “wild and woolly “ which continues another month as does Allison Tuomala on our young artist wall.

W Real Estate 101 N School Street

W Real Estate will feature Nathan Valensky. American (CA) Contemporary Artist utilizing fine art media to express his perspective in this shared human experience. He is influenced by portraiture, impressionism, neo-expressionism, lowbrow art and history. He was born in 1980 to a Jewish family and a twin brother. He recieved a B.A in printmaking from the University of Santa Cruz in 2004 and is a self taught painter.

Bona Marketplace 116 W Standley Street

Bona Market Place featured artist for October and November is Leah Tydings. A local artist that has a myriad of art techniques including felting. A mixture of her art will be on hand that feature "Birth Images" that she has created. Also featured will be local Midwife Lisa Rawson and her assistant Emma Wilcox that specialize in "Home Birth". Both will share their passion for Women’s Health and Well Being.

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Saturday, November 6 with Abeja Hummel and Laurie Adams – in person at River’s Bend Retreat Center: 18450 Ray’s Road; Philo, CA, USA

10:30 am – 12:15 pm PDT; 12:45 – 2:45 pm PDT

Optional indoor film viewing (or you can view the film at home beforehand using the link provided)

Post-screening WTR experience (outdoors if possible). We can offer indoor, socially distanced, masked space to watch the movie for up to 15 people. Weather permitting, we will offer the post-screening WTR experience outdoors. You are welcome to screen the video at home, and then just come for the outdoor post-screening WTR experience.

For more information contact:

Register Here

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by Mary Callahan

Last week’s surprisingly generous storm and several smaller rain systems expected this week are allowing water managers, ranchers and farmers around the region to breathe a sigh of relief.

Abundant rainfall has raised creeks and rivers, filled some storage ponds and provided flexibility to shift to greater reliance on surface water for a spell, reducing the pressure to lean so heavily on groundwater wells in some places.

It also filled smaller storage ponds and has started a new greening of the landscape in pastures that had been grazed down to cracked earth long ago.

“We’re all just in awe,” said Healdsburg dairyman John Bucher. “It’s almost like you can watch it grow. It’s just crazy.”

It also means domestic consumers are using substantially less water for outdoor irrigation, reducing demand on the system, said Don Seymour, principal engineer with the Sonoma County Water Agency.

But while recent wet weather has allowed most folks to take a bit of a breather, it’s likely just that, however: a breather, a respite.

Long-term reserves, especially in Lake Mendocino, are still at abysmally low levels. A significant amount of rain is still needed to raise water levels enough to face next spring and summer with any confidence that there will be sufficient supplies to get through to the winter afterward.

“There’s a big hole to fill,” Seymour said.

Recent rains have added about 5,000 acre feet of storage to Lake Mendocino, arriving just a week or so before the lake would otherwise have matched its lowest level ever: 12,081 acre feet.

Instead, it rose from about 12,864 acre feet on Oct. 22 to 17,676 acre feet a week later.

The gain was about half the 10,000 acre feet that flowed into the reservoir in all of last winter. (An acre foot is equal to 325,851 gallons, or about the amount of water needed to flood most of a football field one foot deep. It would supply almost 3½ water-efficient California households for a year, according to the Water Education Foundation.)

But that remains the second-lowest level since the reservoir was completed in 1959, and it is still almost 100,000 acre feet below the spillway, meaning the amount of water in the lake could be multiplied 6½ times before the reservoir reaches capacity.

Lake Sonoma, a far larger reservoir, gained about 14,500 acre feet in additional reserves after the big storm, bringing total storage to about 120,000 acre feet by Thursday. But that was still less than half the lake’s 245,000-acre-foot capacity.

Seymour said that both reservoirs receive water from catchment areas close to the same size — 105 square miles in the case of Lake Mendocino and 130 square miles in the case of Lake Sonoma.

However, Lake Mendocino will be more challenged to make up ground after two years of critically low rainfall because it’s located in a watershed that simply isn’t blessed with the same amount of rainfall as Lake Sonoma.

Adding to Lake Mendocino’s woes is the shutdown of the Pacific Gas & Elecric hydroelectric plant in Potter Valley. Water from the Eel River is usually transferred through the plant to the Russian River and Lake Mendocino, but water diversions there are now about one-sixth what they normally would be.

“This great gift of rain like we got last weekend is not enough to dig us out of drought,” Nick Malasavage, chief of operations and readiness for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, San Francisco District, which operates the two reservoirs, said Friday. “We are still at historically low pools for this time of year.”

Any success the future might hold in augmenting existing storage remains, as always, in question, but particularly so this year. An intensifying La Niña season along the West Coast that means the Pacific Northwest likely will see more rain than usual this winter and the southwest, less, but uncertain prospects for the transition zone in and around the North Coast.

As for the immediate future, it’s likely to include more moisture than usual, however, with some rain on Monday and again on Wednesday, though likely a fraction of an inch in most inland areas.

The ground already is wet, so less will soak in before running into creeks and rivers, however, and more might be captured in reservoirs, water managers said.

These rains also demonstrate “a very active weather system” that bodes well for the immediate future, said David King, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Monterey.

“I tend to be little pessimistic about all this stuff,” said Eureka forecaster Jeff Tonkin. “But I’m really optimistic, so there you go.

“The great news in all this,” he added, “is we’re not seeing any huge ridging, sustained ridging off the coast that would push storms to our north or to our south. That would be a real deal breaker.”

Whether it’s possible to get the 25 inches that Seymour roughly calculated might be needed by the end of the calendar year to get back on track remains in question.

Normal seasonal rainfall in Santa Rosa, for instance, is just over 30 inches a year.

In the meantime, there is water in the pond at Neil McIsaac & Son Dairy in the Two Rock area of south Sonoma County for the first time in two years, said Neil McIsaac Jr.

That means his son, Neil III, who has spent the midnight hour and the early morning hours of each day trucking water from Petaluma to the ranch for over a year, could take a week off knowing the cows could be watered even if he got a little extra rest.

“I’ve noticed driving around the area that some of the smaller ponds are full,” said McIsaac Jr. “Hopefully it will continue on.”

Was the record rain enough to put a dent in the drought?

In Fort Bragg, the Noyo River has flowed so well ever since late-September’s river showers that water trucking from Ukiah for sale on the Mendocino Coast has been suspended, given supplies in the Fort Bragg reservoir accumulated from earlier deliveries and diversions from the river, Public Works Director John Smith said.

The State Water Resources Control Board has suspended curtailments on diversions from the Russian River for hundreds of water rights holders through what could be Nov. 30. It also has loosened restrictions on Sonoma Water, potentially allowing for greater use of surface water and a pull back from well withdrawals, Seymour said.

But in general, water suppliers and managers say there’s no room to let up on conservation, as long as long-term supplies remain so limited.

“It’s not over until we see significant improvement at the reservoir,” Seymour said. “This was great, but we’ve got a way to go.”

(Santa Rosa Press Democrat)

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Swimming Hole, Navarro River (mk)

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HAROLD & MAUDE will be at Coast Cinemas in Fort Bragg this Weds. at 7! Tickets are $15 and can be bought at the door, on Eventbrite, or on Coast Cinemas’ website or app.

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The Compassionate Use Act of 1996, Prop. 215, was the nation’s first law to re-legalize the personal use and cultivation of marijuana for medical purposes, leading to a national movement that now is legalizing adult recreational use and sales as well. This event will be held 25 years to the day after California voters approved Prop. 215 at the elegant General’s Residence at Fort Mason, San Francisco.

Speakers will include original sponsors, organizers, medical patients, attorneys and advocates of the Prop. 215 campaign, with memorials  to those who have since passed away and to those patients, doctors and caregivers who have been arrested, harassed or imprisoned in the fight for their right to medical marijuana.

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MY FAVE MSM GUY, Wolf Blitzer, a great comic figure scooting around CNN’s “Situation Room” as he points out a global hot spot on his giant map, well Wolfie is in Scotland for the woof-woof “climate summit,” and there he was, live, out in front of Edinburgh Castle, announcing, “I’m now reporting from Edinburgh in Scotland where 20,000 world leaders and delegates have gathered for the COP26 climate summit.” Which is in Glasgow.

20,000 DELEGATES, plus umpteen big shots who think of themselves as so big they have to be there, all flying in on ozone-depleting magic carpets to pretend the global leadership is serious about reversing global warming. The South Pacific nations are serious because they’re about to go glub, glub, glub. The US? The UK? Japan? No, and China, Russia and Turkey didn’t even show up. Biden fell asleep after slurring his way through an insincere, cliche-ridden speech. Short of broad-based economic collapse, which is always a strong possibility, at least here in consumer paradise, the globe will continue to warm. Faster. This conference will be good for the part of Glasgow’s economy geared to the rich, but short of truly radical mass resistance…

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LEE HOWARD WRITES: California trucking? More nonsense from California politicians. California and most other states are seeing empty store shelves. Many of the largest ports are located in California. The truth makes all things easier to understand. So, ships are piling up at Long Beach waiting to get unloaded. The port is jammed full of containers with no place to stack more. The liberal media is blaming it on the trucking industry while the nation’s store shelves are becoming bare. Well there’s more to the story. Could Gavin Newsom and California’s insane trucking laws be the blame? The NEWS says the California port situation is caused by a driver shortage. Not so fast: It is in part caused by a California Truck Ban which says all trucks must be 2011 or newer and a law called AB 5 which prohibits Owner Operators. Traditionally the ports have been served by Owner Operators (non union). California has now banned Owner Operators. Long term, truckers in California are not investing in new trucks because California has a law that makes them illegal in 2035. The requirement is to purchase electric trucks which do not exist. And in the words of Paul Harvey, “Now you know the rest of the story.” 

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CATCH OF THE DAY, November 1, 2021

Hite, Knight, Lewis, Lopes

BRANDON HITE, Willits. Community Supervision violation.

JOHN KNIGHT JR., Willits. Domestic battery.

MATHEW LEWIS, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

ANTHONY LOPES, Willits. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation.

Pierce, Redmill, Titus, Velazquez

KELSEY PIERCE, Ukiah. Vandalism.

PATRICK REDMILL, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-under influence, parole violation.

JOSEPH TITUS, Willits. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

EFRAIN VELAZQUEZ, Ukiah. DUI, no license.

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by Michelle Robertson

Read a smattering of national and even international news headlines and you can see it: San Francisco has an image problem.

It’s not just conservative media slamming the city. The New York Times, the Economist, even British-based publications like the Independent and Sunday Times have run recent stories on the state of San Francisco, ranging from its highly visible housing issues to its shoplifting problems. 

“Why San Francisco’s city government is so dysfunctional,” reads a headline from the Economist. “Crime is basically legal in San Francisco,” says another headline from the Daily Mail. The New York Times, meanwhile, just ran an article stating that “the mundane crime of shoplifting has spun out of control in San Francisco, forcing some chain stores to close.” (SFGATE has published a deeper investigation into this claim.)

Ian Davis, a professor of media studies at UC Berkeley, told SFGATE, “Yes, San Francisco’s progressive image in the American mind makes it a prime target for conservatives to criticize. It often functions as a symbol of liberal or Democratic policies.”

Indeed, a cursory search of Fox News headlines from the past week displays an obvious bias in coverage. “San Francisco families no longer ‘feel safe,’ hire private security amid crime spree,” reads one headline published last week. On the same day, the media site ran a story reading, “San Francisco prosecutors quit progressive DA Chesa Boudin’s office, join recall effort.”

Davis cited a Fox News story from 2019 on the crisis of the unhoused that he said named its bias outright: “In the summer of 2019, Fox News embarked on an ambitious project to chronicle the toll progressive policies have had on the homeless crisis in four West Coast cities: Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Portland, Ore.,” a note at the top of the story reads. 

“All fair points about housing policy failures aside, the Fox piece frames the issue as a failure of ‘Democrats’ and the progressive ideology SF has come to symbolize in the American imagination,” he said. 

“In stories like this, the city is used as a symbol of progressive policy failures,” he continued. “The city is a character in a narrative that confirms the correctness of conservative politics. Selective quotes also permit the reader to see the problem of the unhoused through the eyes of those inconvenienced and made uncomfortable by the ‘scary’ people in the streets.”

The biased media problem is a historical issue. Davis said that until the 1980s, “Americans lived in a low-choice media environment,” which “had the benefit of putting Americans on the same page about the major problems we faced as a nation.”

“Scholars and journalists could identify something like a unified, mainstream public debate,” he explained. 

But in the current high-choice media environment, a paradox has emerged. 

“The diversity of available perspectives was supposed to be more democratic and empowering, but the high-choice media environment paradoxically allowed us to insulate ourselves from opposing views and information,” Davis said. 

Twentieth-century journalists considered news to be “a sort of schoolhouse, offering information to foster educated voting and self-governance,” he said, noting that “the 21st century has shifted the role of news in public life.”

“The schoolhouse metaphor has given way to another metaphor: the church. Americans increasingly use news as a way to endorse a common ideological faith,” he said. “Conservatives look to Tucker Carlson to confirm the evils of Nancy Pelosi and commiserate about the dangers of ‘creeping socialism.’ MSNBC viewers tune in to see if Trump will be indicted for his role in the Capitol riots following Biden’s election.”

“In many ways, our choice of news is a choice of world view,” he continued. “The faithful don’t go to church to learn something new about what happened to Jesus. They go to participate in a community of shared values.” 

In an interview with SFGATE, Sam Singer, one of San Francisco’s top communications strategists, approached San Francisco’s image problem from a PR perspective. A former journalist, Singer has worked with Chevron, Airbnb, Disney and the San Francisco Chronicle, among others (SFGATE and the San Francisco Chronicle are both owned by Hearst but operate independently of one another).

“Perception is reality,” he said. 

Singer thinks San Francisco’s image in the media and beyond “is somewhere between ‘The Wire’ and ‘Squid Game.’”

“San Francisco has a deep-rooted and significant image and reputation problem,” he said. “In fact, I would say that the city is in crisis mode.” 

Singer said San Francisco’s publicized corruption issues at City Hall and the Department of Building Inspection contribute to the city’s reputation. He noted what he called the city’s unwillingness to arrest and prosecute criminals, which leads to viral videos showing thieves running out of Walgreens with their spoils or tearing through Neiman-Marcus with stolen designer purses. (The mayor’s office and the Chamber of Commerce did not respond to SFGATE’s request for comment.) 

Singer also said the city’s housing crisis, as evidenced by its visible homeless population, makes San Francisco appear inhospitable to tourists and locals alike.

“You’re looking at a city that is beyond the pandemic, that has a pandemic of mental health, drug abuse, crime and corruption issues. And the city needs to start to address those issues or it will fall further and further behind,” he said. 

Jennifer Friedenbach, the executive director of the San Francisco Coalition on Homelessness, pushed back against Singer. 

“Homelessness is not a PR issue,” she told SFGATE. “It’s an issue of poverty. It’s an issue of racism. And it’s an issue of disablism and homophobia. These are huge systemic issues that need correcting.”

For Friedenbach, the question is not necessarily why does San Francisco have such a severe issue of homelessness, but why does such a wealthy city have such severe poverty? 

“For a lot of folks visiting, what I hear from them constantly is, ‘Why don’t you have guaranteed housing?’ And it’s a great question because almost every other westernized country does,” she said. 

While viral videos such as those mentioned above inflame the perception that crime is increasing in San Francisco, that’s not exactly the case, crime statistics show. 

At a July press conference, San Francisco Police Department Chief Bill Scott noted that rape cases, robberies and larceny/theft are all down in San Francisco. Homicides and aggravated assaults were fairly stable between 2015 and 2021, but the number of gun violence victims was almost double in 2021 compared with the past two years. 

As for automobile-related crimes, including break-ins and thefts, both saw increases from 2020. Scott also noted that burglaries, in general, were up in 2020 and 2021.

“There’s a lot of misinformation in San Francisco,” Scott said. “But at the end of the day we have to use this data to make decisions about our policies and our investments.”

An uptick in certain crimes isn’t an issue unique to San Francisco. New York and Los Angeles, among others, have also seen a surge in pandemic-era crimes, according to local media and police departments.

But for many, the question still remains: How does San Francisco fix its image?

In Singer’s view as a PR expert, the city must first admit to its problems. 

“Anyone worth their salt in communications, PR, reputation management or crisis communications won’t try to tell you to sweep the issues under the rug,” he said. “You have a problem and you have to take action.”

He said he would call for the mayor to “declare a crisis not just on San Francisco’s streets, but on theft and petty crime.”

In Singer’s opinion, the city also needs to increase “accountability for results from city agencies and nonprofits as well,” and devise not just a better communications plan but an operational plan. 

All major cities have problems, and sometimes highly visible ones at that. But as those of us who live here know, these issues extend far beyond the realm of PR. Can San Francisco fix its image to reflect the reality of life here? Time will tell. The issue, as Friedenbach noted, is entrenched.

“I think San Francisco is getting used as a symbol of a progressive left city by conservative interests, who are greatly exaggerating the situation here,” she said. 


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Why the world pities us and fears us

by Michael Moore

As the week drew to a close and President Biden desperately tried to get Congress to vote on his infrastructure bills (build roads, help people) before he headed to two major summits in Europe, pundits and corporatist Dems railed against the progressive lawmakers for holding things up. Of course the only people holding things up were two pro-wealthy Democratic senators — and every single Republican. The progressives? They were holding out on behalf of the vast majority of Americans whose lives would be turned around and vastly improved should Biden’s big bill pass. 

Biden was beside himself to get something enacted before going to the G-20 summit and the COP-26 climate meeting. So he started tossing major pieces of his beloved bill overboard. He threw out paid family leave, got rid of free community college, took dental and eyeglasses away from the elderly and made a thousand other little cuts. He also decided the wealthy would not have to pay their true fair share of the taxes. 

So Biden left for Europe without anything becoming law. In the weeks leading up to his trip, he (I mean the Republicans and the two lame Dems) also failed to raise the minimum wage and they failed to protect voting rights. The pundits howled. “Biden goes to Europe as a weakened president!” “Biden humiliated in front of the world!” “The US cannot govern itself and Biden enters these summits with America as the laughing stock amongst world leaders.”


Are the press and politicians that clueless as to why the world is laughing at us? I hate to tell you, it ain’t because of the roads and child tax credits. We are the laughing stock because we refuse to take care of our own people — and NO ONE around the world can understand why we force our old people to suffer and why we put our own children last. Not other country’s children. OURS.

I hate to reveal this secret, but here it goes:

Every one of the E.U. countries has:

•Universal free health care. 

• Free or nearly-free college. 

• Paid Family Leave for at least four months.

•Complete care of all elderly. 

•Robust funding of schools. 

• All sorts of help for the jobless and the poor.

• Workers enjoy mandatory paid vacation with a minimum of four weeks off (some countries are almost double that).

• Women having full equal rights. Abortion and birth control is free and easily available in all but two E.U. countries (Malta and Poland). Most of their constitutions have what we don’t have — an equal rights clause for all women. 

The list goes on. And not just social safety net policies. Portugal has stopped mass incarceration and made possession of drugs legal — and has seen drug use go down because they treat drug addiction as a medical problem, not a crime.

Countries like Slovenia and Germany not only have free college, they will let any foreign student come there and attend college for free. Yes, you read that right. They will even let American students come to their countries and get a free four-year degree! What? You say you can’t speak Slovenian? No problem! They have a whole curriculum taught in English!

Spain, France, Italy and others all have high speed affordable bullet trains. Cheap mass transit is everywhere. 

In Austria you can vote at 16. Teenagers have held seats in the Austrian parliament!

In Norway, when you commit a crime you spend a few years going to school, learning a trade, making amends to those whom you’ve hurt — and no sentence can be longer than 21 years (including for the mass murderer of 77 people, mostly teenagers). 

Yes, other countries have their own problems. But, while American school boards are enacting rules prohibiting teaching students about the history of American slavery, racism and genocide, these other countries REQUIRE its young people to be taught about their own evil past (and present) in the hopes that the next generation won’t make their parents’ mistakes. So German students are thoroughly enmeshed in learning about the Holocaust. French students are taught about their brutal colonial past in Algeria and Vietnam. Irish students are well aware of the abuse caused by the Catholic Church. Spanish students get courses on the evils of fascism and Spain’s fascist past. Antifa, you say? Right down the hall in Room 104, 3rd Hour social studies with Señora Valdez! 

Yes, we are a laughing stock. Biden’s “humiliation” this week in Europe is that the nation he leads is a brute to its own people. It’s not that the other leaders are laughing at him. They feel sorry for him. They pity us. “Those poor Americans!” Most people around the world actually like us. They admire our creativity and inventiveness. Which makes their incredulity even worse — they simply can’t figure out why in a democracy we allow this misery to continue! Why we haven’t thrown the bastards out. Why 50+1 votes out of 100 senators isn’t called a majority. American math says 60 out of 100 is the majority. We look like idiots. The Europeans, the Japanese, the Australians, the Argentinians, the South Africans — they don’t hate us. They pity us and they cannot friggin’ figure us out. 

And they fear us. Not because of our weapons and desire to invade other countries (although they should remain very, very afraid of that). No. They’re afraid because, if we treat our own people this way, if we require an enforced ignorance and teach lies to our students, then what they truly fear is what will happen to this planet if the wealthiest nation, the one blessed with the most resources on Earth, shits so easily and happily on itself. It is MIND-BOGGLING to the rest of the world that we are so hell-bent on destroying our Democracy and ourselves.

I do feel sorry for Joe Biden sitting on that world stage this week. But not because he couldn’t get an infrastructure bill passed. It’s because he has to sit there over Scottish tea and explain why our old people are now finally going to get to have free hearing aids! — but not glasses, and not a visit to the dentist. “You see,” Uncle Joe will explain, hanging his head, “in America, if you are old, you do have a right to hear — but not to see. And not to chew. God Bless America.”

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Old Ukiah

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Liberal bias, mostly factual content...

They mention the fact that content for instance on GMOs contained clear factual errors, I’m sure there are others. You could also check them on politifact, or notice where they lay on the Media Bias Chart. 

Point is, they have a strong political view, and cherry pick content from more unbiased first providers, on the basis of promoting a specific world view, justifying their beliefs and ignoring data to the contrary. This is true for many Strongly Liberal sites, Daily KOS, Meidas Touch, etc. That doesn’t disqualify what they say, it does demand that you understand it is being filtered through a liberal lens. 

This is why I try really hard to pick sources at the top and middle of the Media Bias Chart, because they have little to no editorial content, they provide strong reliably factual content, and for the most part give you the whole story. If you’re going to indict TYT for the behavior of one of their listeners, we have to look how FOX, Breitbart, OAN, and NewsMax almost succeeded in inciting a take-down of our government including the death and injury of hundreds of Capitol Police (sauce for the goose...) 

By the way, if you look at the media bias chart, you’ll see something fascinating, the liberal biased content still remains reasonably fact based, while the conservative content is all over the place, and has a significant number of sources deep in the pure propaganda, disinformation, flat out information sewage space, and there aren’t any liberal sources down there. It’s clear there is a process going on here to manipulate people. It’s clear that the less educated one is, or the more one is attached to a religious orthodoxy, the more likely one is to be sucked into conservative dystopian propaganda. There are powerful monied sources looking to engineer America into an Oligarchy. You can tell who it is, by their tactics. Stuffing the Federal Courts with Corporatists. Deleting Democracy for State elections... even declaring that state electors and state administrators should be able to overturn election results. If that doesn’t chill you to the bone, I assert you’re looking at the wrong hand, and are falling to gross misdirection. 

Oh, and if by any of this, you assume I don’t have any concerns or questions about the integrity or legitimacy of Democratic behavior, you would be terribly mistaken. We’ve built a system that rewards the biggest whores... There are plenty of whores on both sides to go around (I’m watching two right now gutting the Infrastructure bill.) 

— Marie Tobias 

* * *

Ukiah Bank Note, 1917

* * *


by James Kunstler

Is it so, as some wags say, that industry no longer makes money; only finance does? That’s been the operating theory for much of the West lately. Of course, that invites the question: what then is finance supposed to finance… that is, put money into? Why… industry, of course, and in the broadest sense of the word: the production of goods… goods being things that have value (that’s what’s good about them). How quaint! But most of the industry that used to be here has gone to other lands.

What about all that money (capital) flowing into technology: Facebook, Google, Amazon? Hmmmm. What does Facebook produce, besides conflict between its users? Okay, it harvests data about them to sell to advertisers. And what are the advertisers advertising? Their products. Who produces the products? Mostly those people in other lands. Facebook users, then, are increasingly not employed, at least not in the production of goods. Perhaps in services like nursing, trucking, garbage pickup, food prep, police, firemen, prison guards, government bureaucracy (is that a service or a dis-service?) and et cetera.

While we’re on the subject, what does Google produce? Supposedly, answers to questions, plus, like Facebook, it harvests information about the people who ask the questions and then sells the info, blah blah. And whutabout Amazon? Don’t they sell a lot of products? Yeah, mostly produced by those people in other lands. What Amazon really produces is a phenomenal amount of motion — trucks going hither and thither, at increasing cost now as the price of gasoline and diesel fuel shoots up. To me, that looks like a problem for Amazon’s business model. Another problem is the growing number of people without gainful employment who have little money to buy stuff from Amazon, wherever it comes from.

That last problem has been papered-over for two years by “helicopter money” from the federal government — direct payment to the people for doing nothing, producing neither goods nor services. This has been an impressive trick. The money comes from nowhere and for nothing. The trick is based on simple accounting fraud. The second law of thermodynamics, a.k.a. entropy, suggests that eventually this process will degrade the value of the money (or “money”) issued by the fraudsters.

The hand in play for the moment is the spending legislation proposed by “Joe Biden.” It would generate a whole helluva lot more helicopter money from nowhere for nothing, and would theoretically keep the game going a little bit longer — except the process will only generate more unwanted entropy, causing decay in the value of that “money” and canceling the desired effect of spreading it around. That’s called inflation. If the value of money drops hard and fast, that is called hyperinflation. It would be politically and socially devastating, and probably lead to the downfall of the government. The net effect would be a nation bankrupt at all levels and that will segue into an epic economic depression.

If the legislation doesn’t get passed, the USA will perhaps skip the hyperinflationary intermezzo and move straight into a deflationary depression, which is what you get when nobody has any money. When that happens, especially in a system with money actually based on debt-creation, debts do not get paid (mortgages, car payments, credit cards, perhaps even coupons on US Treasury bonds), and when debts are not paid, money disappears. Poof! No money! It’s a vicious cycle. The more money disappears the more money keeps disappearing. None of this bodes well for the winter ahead.

Add to that the growing breakdown in global trade operations. Even many of those goods produced in other lands aren’t making it to the docks, and the reduced flow of goods that happened to already land on the docks can’t get unloaded and delivered to its various destinations because of disruptions in the US trucking sector. To some degree, those disruptions are caused by bonehead government regulations, especially in California, where most of the stuff from Asia lands. The bonehead regulations (like, outlawing trucks more than three years old) can be thought of as typical government “dis-services.”

Now add to that the rising cost of oil, natural gas, and coal — the global economy’s primary resources — and disruptions in the industries that produce these vital resources and you’ve got another layer of disorder being introduced into the system (entropy again). For the moment, government propaganda tries to divert your attention to a possible shortage of Christmas presents as the nation’s main concern. Don’t be fooled. It’s more about total systemic economic breakdown, as in US citizens having no heat and no food. Also, no gasoline and no parts for fixing broken cars (and trucks).

Do you suppose the capital markets will keep rising as all this spins out? I would suppose that the capital markets will lose 80 to 90 percent of their value when all is said and done. The fabled “One Percent” will finally feel the pain that was previously distributed among the rest of us. Don’t make the mistake of thinking the One Percent can control the situation. They are mere Wizards of Oz, barfing into their laptops. If working-from-home wasn’t a thing, they’d be jumping out of windows on Wall Street.

It’s a grim outlook, I admit, but you could see it coming over the horizon from a thousand miles away. Where I differ from other observers is that I doubt that any sort of extreme government surveillance state can be imposed on the public under these conditions. The people will be too pissed-off and, anyway, the current regime will be broke and out of mojo — possibly to the degree that it has to be shoved aside. “Let’s Go Brandon” is serious business. It’s the end of something.

The possibility, though, is for a nation both broke and sick struggling to get through a dark passage of history. Stay nimble, stay local, stay reality-based, be helpful, be honest, be brave, and be kind to each other. We’ll get through it.

* * *

* * *


By Linda Pentz Gunter

So here we are again at another COP (Conference of the Parties). Well, some of us are in Glasgow, Scotland at the COP itself, and some of us, this writer included, are sitting at a distance, trying to feel hopeful.

But this is COP 26. That means there have already been 25 tries at dealing with the once impending and now upon us climate crisis. Twenty five rounds of “blah, blah, blah” as youth climate activist, Greta Thunberg, so aptly put it.

So if some of us do not feel the blush of optimism on our cheeks, we can be forgiven. I mean, even the Queen of England has had enough of the all-talk-and-no-action of our world leaders, who have been, by and large, thoroughly useless. Even, this time, absent. Some of them have been worse than that.

Not doing anything radical on climate at this stage is fundamentally a crime against humanity. And everything else living on Earth. It should be grounds for an appearance at the International Criminal Court. In the dock.

But what are the world’s greatest greenhouse gas emitters consumed with right now? Upgrading and expanding their nuclear weapons arsenals. Another crime against humanity. It’s as if they haven’t even noticed that our planet is already going quite rapidly to hell in a handbasket. They’d just like to hasten things along a bit by inflicting a nuclear armageddon on us as well.

Not that the two things are unconnected. The civilian nuclear power industry is desperately scrambling to find a way into the COP climate solutions. It has rebranded itself as “zero-carbon”, which is a lie. And this lie goes unchallenged by our willing politicians who blithely repeat it. Are they really that lazy and stupid? Possibly not. Read on.

Nuclear power isn’t a climate solution of course. It can make no plausible financial case, compared with renewables and energy efficiency, nor can it deliver nearly enough electricity in time to stay the inexorable onrush of climate catastrophe. It is too slow, too expensive, too dangerous, hasn’t solved its lethal waste problem and presents a potentially disastrous security and proliferation risk.

Nuclear power is so slow and expensive that it doesn’t even matter whether or not it is ‘low-carbon’ (let alone ‘zero-carbon’). As the economist, Amory Lovins, says, “ Being carbon-free does not establish climate-effectiveness.” If an energy source is too slow and too costly, it will “reduce and retard achievable climate protection,” no matter how ‘low-carbon’ it is.

This leaves only one possible rationale for the political obsession with keeping the nuclear power industry alive: its indispensability to the nuclear weapons sector.

New, small, fast reactors will make plutonium, essential to the nuclear weapons industry as Henry Sokolski and Victor Gilinsky of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center continue to point out. Some of these so-called micro-reactors would be used to power the military battlefield. The Tennessee Valley Authority is already using two of its civilian nuclear reactors to produce tritium, another key “ingredient” for nuclear weapons and a dangerous blurring of the military and civil nuclear lines.

Keeping existing reactors going, and building new ones, maintains the lifeline of personnel and know-how needed by the nuclear weapons sector. Dire warnings are being sounded in the halls of power about the threat to national security should the civil nuclear sector fade away.

This is more than a hypothesis. It is all spelled out in numerous documents from bodies such as The Atlantic Council to The Energy Futures Initiative. It has been well researched by two stellar academics at the University of Sussex in the UK: Andy Stirling and Phil Johnstone. It’s just almost never talked about. Including by those of us in the anti-nuclear power movement, much to Stirling and Johnstone’s consternation.

But in a way it’s just glaringly obvious. As we in the anti-nuclear movement wrack our brains to understand why our perfectly empirical and compelling arguments against using nuclear power for climate fall perpetually on deaf ears, we are maybe missing the fact that the nuclear-is-essential-for-climate arguments we hear are just one big smokescreen.

At least, let’s hope so. Because the alternative means that our politicians really are that lazy and stupid, and also gullible, or in the pockets of the big polluters, whether nuclear or fossil fuel, or possibly all of the above. And if that’s the case, we must brace ourselves for more “blah, blah, blah” at COP 26 and a truly horrible outlook for present and future generations.

We are grateful, therefore, to our colleagues attending COP 26, who will be promoting, rather than tilting at, windmills as they make their case, one more time, that nuclear power has no place in, and in fact hinders, climate solutions.

And I hope they will also point out that expensive and obsolete nuclear power should never be promoted, under the false guise of a climate solution, as an excuse to perpetuate the nuclear weapons industry.

Article source:

(Linda Pentz Gunter is the International specialist at Beyond Nuclear and writes for and edits Beyond Nuclear International.)

* * *

Old Green Beanery, Gobbi Street, Ukiah

* * *


I suspect that many here are aware of COP26 (whatever that means). I am. But I can’t, frankly, be bothered by a lot of climate hoo=hah.

Kerry et al. fly to Glasgow in their private jets and palaver about what the peons will be allowed to do. Then they fly home in their jets.

Give me a break. I would be delighted to hear that all of the jets had been grounded as fossil-fuel fossils, and the “delegates” and honchos and honchas a la Greta had to figure out how to get home on their own.

Maybe hike to Liverpool and catch a freighter.

I like that image. I picture a black and white movie adopted from a lesser known Hemingway short story c1940, starring Sidney Greensteet and Humphrey Bogart in trenchcoats. They’re on foot from Glasgow, headed for Liverpool on a foggy night, on the run from Nazi assassins…

* * *


United States45,970,785745,832
(data from Johns Hopkins University & Medicine, 11/1/2021)


  1. George Hollister November 2, 2021

    I am sure much of what LEE HOWARD is saying is correct, and MSM would not dare report it. But if California ports become like the old Silk Road, commerce will look for, and find a way around them. There was a good article in the WSJ about this subject yesterday. If Mexico can get it together, they are in a very good position to take advantage.

    • Harvey Reading November 2, 2021

      Jesus, George, you’re just peddling more of the old “invisible hand” hokum. The “economy” has NEVER corrected itself. It has always been “fixed” after it crashes by the government handing out money to the wealthy robber barons, while the rest of us eat shit. It’s way past time for this country to overthrow rule by the economy and its leaders. It just leads to more for the wealthy and less for the ones who actually produce that wealth.

  2. mr. wendal November 2, 2021


    That was one of those facebook fakes going around.

    That rule about trucks being newer than 2011 has been in effect since 2008. And the California Air Resources Board said that about 96% of the trucks that serve the ports are already in compliance.

    There is no law that makes commercial diesel trucks “illegal” after 2035. Only new cars and passenger trucks sold in the state have to be low emission. Fossil fuel powered vehicles can still be on the road and used fossil fuel powered vehicle can still be bought and sold.

    Commercial truck dealers in the state have to start selling low emission (electric) trucks in 2024 and by 2045 all new commercial trucks sold in California must be low emission. These legislations are aimed at new vehicles. If our emission standards for diesel powered vehicles were as stringent as those in other states our trucks would not be polluting as much right now. It’s a bit backwards.

    AB 5 as it pertains to commercial trucking is being decided in the courts. The California Trucking Association has an appeal of AB 5 pending at the Federal Supreme Court. It hasn’t yet been heard and the Supreme Court hasn’t yet decided if they will hear it or not. There was a trucking company who had a similar but not as broad a case go to the Supreme Court but the Court declined to consider it. Reuters picked upon that case and wrote an article making it sound like owner/operators will be no longer allowed to operate in the state but it’s not decided yet.

      • mr. wendal November 2, 2021

        That’s what I keep hearing from drivers, too. It’s the same thing that’s going on in almost every sector and brought to light with the onset Covid-19.

        As a country of people who get most of their information from a few social media sites and tv/internet “news” instead of directly from the sources, are we capable of getting together to make the changes that need to be made to survive and maybe even thrive?

      • George Hollister November 2, 2021

        This is an interesting driver’s perspective. Companies are looking for other avenues, including more vertical integration here in the US, and less outsourcing. The global supply chain is less expensive, but increasingly fragile, and unreliable. There are other problems with the global supply chain than the US ports, and the ports are a problem. China is more and more looking like a poor place to do business, for numerous reasons. My guess is, companies like Apple are doing some serious reassessing, or at least they should be.

        • Harvey Reading November 2, 2021

          Feeding the fire for war with China, eh Dingbat? What you peddle is direct from Lunatic Fringe Central. Keep piling on the dry manure and you may get your wish, old man. I hope you’re the first to volunteer for the fray. Don’t worry, it won’t last long…nor will the human species.

      • chuck dunbar November 2, 2021

        Thanks, John, for this very interesting and fact-filled piece.

  3. Marmon November 2, 2021

    400+ private jets and 13,000 TONS OF CARBON!!!

    That’s what the elites at the Climate Cult Conference did breaking their own rules.

    Biden & Democrats want you driving CCP made electric vehicle battery cars, but China & Russia didn’t even go to the meeting.

    Stop the Green lies!

    -Marjorie Taylor Greene


    • Bruce Anderson November 2, 2021

      Straight from Dingbat Central, eh James?

  4. Cotdbigun November 2, 2021

    Joe Biden in Scotland
    “As one computer said,if you’re on the train, and they say Portal Bridge, you know you better make other plans………

  5. Joe November 2, 2021

    Without China, India and Russia at the climate table it looks like Cop26 is going nowhere. While all of us here on planet earth would like to migrate to cleaner forms of energy many experts don’t see any functional plan to transition to it that will not cause massive disruptions in society. The main reason, but not the only one, is that we don’t have any cost effective methods for storing massive amounts of energy which is needed to buffer for intermittent forms of alternative energy like solar, wind etc. The best way for people to “be the change they want to see” is to use existing technology to create their own energy efficient existence. For instance have off grid solar, or grid interactive, with battery backup and alternative electric transportation . Grow as much of your own food as possible which saves transportation costs/energy. Some analysts see oil prices hitting $120/barrel by next summer. If change is going to happen it will happen at the local level. There is little or no economic incentive for large corporations if people are energy independent so don’t expect any help from them. Last time I checked the worlds largest user of fossil fuels was the U.S. military complex.

    • Bruce Anderson November 2, 2021

      India is there. Modi spoke yesterday.

      • Joe November 2, 2021

        They are at the event but will not commit to targets because it is impossible for them to do so.

    • George Hollister November 2, 2021

      Two energy sources that are currently environmentally incorrect, but would have a relatively minimal carbon footprint are hydro, and nuclear. Both of these sources can provide consistent power, except for hydro during a drought. We need some realism, which in this case appears to be inherently absent.

      • Mike Kalantarian November 2, 2021

        realism = nuclear waste

        • George Hollister November 2, 2021

          Yes. Waste is a problem. Mainly, where to put it. No one wants it in their neighborhood, even if the location is suitable. But then again, how serious are we about a carbon footprint? And what about hydro? There is also biomass, which Europe and Japan are using, but we are against.

          • Mike Kalantarian November 2, 2021

            I agree, becoming serious about carbon footprint is key. When many begin internalizing that notion in their day-to-day, demand will drop. Fly less, drive less, buy local, grow some food, etc. These are things all of us can do right now to start making a difference. It’s a sort of return to the way people used to live, up to just a few generations ago. The human race has been carbon profligate for a very short period of time. We simply have to unlearn that way of living or the planet is going to throw us off.

      • Harvey Reading November 2, 2021

        You’re peddling more right-wing propaganda, George. The hydro potential is next to nothing compared with the demand…not to mention that most major streams have already been dammed to the hilt. Then, you have to consider how much petroleum, along with other plundered non-renewable resources, are required to construct and maintain the damned dams and generators and transmission infrastructure.

        The truth is, in order to even have half a chance of surviving, the human population must decline dramatically–especially in self-entitled places like the US.

        An earlier commenter addressed the nuclear nightmare. You need to wake up and stop peddling lunatic-fringe, kaputalist nonsense. Enjoy your wet dream!

    • Kirk Vodopals November 2, 2021

      That sounds nice for rural Mendo County residents, but what about the cities?

      • Joe November 2, 2021

        No reason why people in the suburbs can’t raise a garden and get rid of their grass and they are already putting up solar just add some storage. Community gardens are already happening in the cites, just have to expand the ideas. Unfortunately everyone’s problems will not be solved.

  6. Val Muchowski November 2, 2021

    The Mendocino Democratic Central Committee will be meeting virtually on Tuesday, November 2, 2021. If you are interested in Democratic issues or events, mail Lynne Atkins at

    • Harvey Reading November 2, 2021

      Democraps, who are nearly as fascist as the wingnut rethuglicans, should dry up and blow away for all the good they do. Just go away and make some room for a real alternative party to rise up and really battle fascism.

  7. Rye N Flint November 2, 2021

    A blast from the past… 2007!

  8. John Sakowicz November 2, 2021

    Trent James for Sheriff

  9. Edward H. November 2, 2021

    I agree! Rescue the goat! The Brewery’s the perfect place for him. Look forward to seeing him there! Rescue soon Brewery! Or some other AV goat lover with a barn…he’s in bad shape…

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