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Letters To The Editor



I believe killing people with drones to be profoundly immoral-alas. This nation is deeply invested in killing people in this manner and we are building ever more bases around the world to support just this. Recently there has been a faux debate over the use of drones. Whoever 'wins' or 'loses' the debate the program will go forward, the entire planet will be the killing field and the inclusion or exemption of Americans from the kill list a small and mostly inconsequential annoyance. The debate over inclusion of Americans on kill lists is distraction to desensitize us to CIA run killing sprees with drones carried out more broadly — mission accomplished.

I have read that the State Department is the political arm of the CIA and believe this. Further, it is clear to me that the CIA is the military arm of national and international corporatism and drone technology the latest mechanism to access resources belonging to others without paying for them. As many here know Smedley Butler, Marine Corp head during the early part of the 20th century, said he did little more than provide mob style muscle around the world on behalf of US corporations. Today little has changed, just substitute CIA for Marine Corp.

The following may be difficult for some to embrace but it is essential to the understanding of the drone program. Some years ago I investigated the existence of Al Qaida 'prior' to 9/11 and found no evidence. It seemed to be a construct of the CIA made up out of whole cloth. Robin Cook, Britains ambassador to Afghanistan during the Soviet invasion wrote that the CIA used that term, Al Qaida, as code for a book-keeping scheme to keep track of which Afghan men they (the CIA) paid the Pakistani ISI to train for them to fight the Soviets-this the earliest mention of Al Qaida. To gain further insight into this I read a book by Steven Coll called 'Ghost Wars' which chronicled the history of Al Qaida from the time of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan until 9/11. Mr Coll is a two time Pulitzer winning journalist and as such professional. He mentioned Al Qaida many times in his book and provided source material for each mention. Every single source was the CIA. Without the CIA as a source his pages would have been blank, empty. FYI, he did not apologize for his single source reporting.

The American people know a terrible truth they will not acknowledge. What we all know is that a steel and concrete skyscraper cannot burn up or down in ten seconds-a tar-paper shack cannot burn down in ten seconds. It takes a massive amount of highly controlled high tech explosives to raze two trade towers and the 47 story building #7 to the ground in ten seconds. The movement of this quantity of this kind of material could not escape notice of the CIA, FBI and other intell units — it's what they exist to do on our behalf, right?

So, now it is about drones. Brennen, White House nominee for CIA chief, was someone on the inside of the intell community during 9/11. He has been kept in place in government as a gate keeper to prevent anyone from looking bawkward. Remember, Obama insists we look forward regarding the investigating of crimes!? Now Brennen will be head of the CIA and the drone program whose very existence depends on the existence of Al Qaida. Yes, a sick messy business. Obviously this illusion that the perpetrators of 9/11 stood up in ten seconds is of critical importance to providing rationale for the unending war on terror and when public fear wanes it must be stoked with carefully choreographed 'events' featuring 'shoe', 'underwear, and 'car' bombers. The opportunities for these are endless as you have witnessed.

Again, it took a mere ten seconds to create what is essentially a cardboard image of an international terrorist organization the only evidence for which is 'anonymous CIA sources'-remember Steven Coll? Sadly you wouldn't buy a used car from an anonymous source. Those of us who accept anonymous CIA voices as sufficient evidence to deem Khalid Sheik Muhammed the mastermind of 9/11, Bin Laudin, who never heard of Al Qaida prior to 9/11, the leader of that organization and as adequate justification for the imprisonment of hundreds of hapless souls in Quantanamo torture centers may well deserve the fascist police state such acceptance produces — alas some more.

Don Scotten

Sprague River



To the Editor:

As the new book about the hunt for Aaron Bassler brings up bad memories of that awful time, I have discovered that public statements that I made are being used against me both by private citizens and public officials.

The point I was trying to make is that arrest should be the first priority in even the most heinous circumstances. Not only because we all have the right to a trial, but also because it allows us to learn why something happened by interviewing the suspect.

After making those comments during that awful time, I became involved in the Jere Melo foundation by volunteering my time and went to work as a security contractor on the same property where that great man lost his life.

If anyone in this county feels that my comments diminished the memory of Jere Melo or Mathew Coleman, I apologize with all my heart. While I never met either, I did become aquatinted with those who loved them and they were obviously wonderful men.

If anyone felt that my interpretation of the events was some type of support for Aaron Bassler, you could not be more wrong. I always felt the incident would end the way it did. There were some subtle details about how it happened that caused me some concern.

As a true conservative, one has to be concerned about due process for all Americans. That is the only point I so poorly made.

Unfortunately, my poor choice of words has been brought up by a former associate who is using them to enhance his own ambitions but that poor choice of words still belong to me.

Ken Good




Ms. Maria Brown, Sanctuary Superintendent, Gulf of the Farallones, National Marine Sanctuary, 991 Marine Drive, The Presidio, San Francisco, California 94129

Dear Ms. Brown,

As a resident of Mendocino County since 1963, I served on the Board of Supervisors between 1979 and 1995 during which time I was appointed asthe Coastal Representative to inform the Board on maritime and marine related issues.

Beginning with Lease Sale 53 in the mid '70's I have monitored proposed off shore oil development and for many reasons, including those listed below, have supported the sanctuary movement and opposed offshore oil and gas development.

While off shore development technologies have improved, they have not improved enough to assure that an oil spill would not happen. Therefore I again put forward the primary reasons why the Northern California coast should be protected by a sanctuary designation from Cordell Bank to the Oregon* boarder.

Lee shore:

With the exception of winter storms, prevailing winds are northwesterly to westerly. Any spill will be wind driven to the coast line where there is little opportunity to protect the Coastal National Monument, river and stream estuaries, shear bluffs, the rocky shore or beaches. Unlike the Marin County coast where there was a reasonable access and a number of beaches to retrieve sea birds and attempts to mop up the oil from the tanker collision, the Mendocino Coast is made up primarily of bluffs, cliffs and rock out croppings.

Mendocino Escarpment and Upwelling:

As far back as the November issue of FORBES in 1973 the Mendocino Escarpment was recognized as being such a rich fishery resource that then Secretary of State Henry Kissinger allowed Poles and Russians to fish our waters. The deep canyons which form the Escarpment bring nutrients to the surface with such strength that the upwelling can be observed by satellite telemetry. The upwelling is a strategic national resource and should be protected as much as possible. To my knowledge such a gift of nature exists no where else within our 200 mile territorial sea limit.

Clean Up Ability:

Essentially we have none. Spill recovery vessels, be they barges, tugs, attendant vessels, and skimmers draw as much as 9 feet and may be up to 120 feet in length. No where on the Mendocino Coast can such a support fleet be harbored. Pt. Arena is an open roadstead. Albion is shoal without adequate depth or port facilities. Mendocino Bay offers no protection to westerlies and has no port or dock facilities. Noyo, at best, is in a near dilapidated state. The Port of Fort Bragg was demolished nearly a hundred years ago. None of its shore facilities exist today.

Without adequate port facilities and ready clean up vessels, off shore oil production should neither exist or be considered.

Shoreside Community:

At best we have a hand full of experienced fishermen, few of which have sailed offshore, are licensed, works commercial or would qualify for an OS AB ticket. In essence support crews would have to be transitioned into our communities where there is essentially a zero vacancy rate of residential housing. The three community colleges which serve the coast are deficient in offering programs which might fill this need.


Access to the Mendocino Coast is difficult. The county airport at Little River is limited. It is an unmonitored airport with few, if any, services. The only bus system serving the Coast is the Mendocino Transit Authority with very limited service. Greyhound calls at the Ukiah Airport twice a day. No airport in the county has any passenger service.


The Coast is as dependent on fire wood today as it was 100 years ago. There is no natural gas available, and only three 60 KVA lines serve the Coast. This writer has been informed by a PG&E manager that electric costs in Mendocino County are the highest in their service area. Gasoline and diesel are retailed at considerably more than in the more urban areas.

Local Economy:

Mendocino County is rural averaging 25 people per square mile. In my zip code, 95432, we have 4.5 people per sq. mile. Average annual family income is about 15% below the state average and approximately 25% of the population is in contact with the Health and Human Services Agency of the County. In essence: our economy is fragile. And like the economy on the Gulf Coast any disruption is devastating. Over the past decades the public has accepted restrictive regulations in our timber, fishing and visitor serving industries primarily due to resource limitations. New jobs are few and many of our high school graduates leave the area in search of an education and jobs elsewhere. The protection of our resource base is critical to the sustainability of our local economy.

There is little proof that offshore oil development benefits local economies as a whole, while there is considerable proof that oil spills can be and are devastating to carefully balanced local economies.

In conclusion there is no reasonable cause to leave the Mendocino coast unprotected. The rationale for any or all of the Marine Sanctuaries is embodied within the need for coastal protection of the north coast.


Norman L. de Vall,

Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, Ret.


* re: Oregon: There may be many similar reasons for the protection of the Oregon and Washington Coasts, but I do not have local knowledge experience.




Okay, once could have been one of the AVA's notorious in infernal typos. But there it was, two weeks in a row: “No more bullockies"!

Diana, darling, what are you saying? What have I done?

I know I haven't written in a while, but they keep moving me. And I've been so busy fundraising for that Craig Stehr fellow — well, time just got away from me.

In a word, baby, please reconsider! For the love of God, montresor!

Loyal subscriber,

D. Bullock




To the Editor,

At the City Council meeting on Feb 20th, we heard a number of justifications for the City of Ukiah taking out a new loan to pay for the road improvements necessary to provide easy access to the planned Costco Store. Councilwomen Mari Rodin said that “It's about avoiding sprawl.” Later, Sage Sagiacomo, Deputy CEO, said an aim of the City government was to “keep development within the park and discourage urban sprawl.” Vice Mayor Phil Baldwin said that “while the majority of the people in the city don't love the big box culture and our dependence upon it, this at least keeps business corralled on Airport Park Boulevard” and avoids the hated sprawl. None of these condemners of sprawl explained to us what they meant by the term nor why they so feared it.

Therefore, I went back to the basic law establishing the RDA — Redevelopment Act (Health and Safety Code Section 33031), the original source of the funds that our local government wants to use to prevent “urban sprawl” I discovered that sprawl, either of the urban big city type or the small rural town type is not mentioned in the Redevelopment Act at all! The first purpose of the RDA was to promote low to moderate income housing that the private sector does not provide. The second purpose was to cure “blight.” Blight is defined as “areas with unsafe buildings, stagnant property values, high business vacancies, high crime rates and residential overcrowding.” As County Supervisor Pinches commented several years back, we don't really have any urban blight in Mendocino County. Sprawl is generally defined as the tendency to place housing in single family zones some distance removed from public and commercial services and thus vastly increasing the reliance upon automobiles for shopping and essential services. The Redwood Business Park along Airport Park Boulevard already qualifies as a contributor to sprawl and to encouraging reliance upon the automobile.

Sangiacomo opined that the City has known for a long time that, in order to realize its potential, the roads leading to it would need to be improved. Yet, just last year when Walmart applied for expansion to Superstore status, the City did not apply RDA funds to expanding the capacity of roads leading to it and the Planning Commission was forced to reject the Walmart application. Very puzzling this. Council member Mari Rodin explained that Costco shouldn't be expected to pay for traffic improvements because “that is something a developer would pay for, and we as a city have stepped into the developer role.” Rodin fails to consider that a developer, like the one who started the Redwood Business Park years ago, usually builds road around a mall and then charged their cost to the retail stores as part of their monthly rental fees until he gets his money back with profit.

If the City Council does get the I-Bank loan they want to pay for the Costco roads, we can surely expect Walmart to resubmit their application for major expansion and make use of these same roads. What then? Even more traffic, more sprawl, and the likely closure of even more small businesses and food stores that are now distributed throughout our town and serve as a bulwark against sprawl.


James Houle


Redwood Valley

PS. How Are You Going To Pay?

The “I-Bank” loan proposed by your staff will actually cost the City $8.5 million including the 2.06% interest over 30 years when all three phases of the loan are included.

The $6.2 million once earmarked for COSTCO road improvements under the RDA program will end up costing the City approximately $13 million over the 20 year life of these bonds. The State Finance Department forbids the City to use this RDA money for the Costco project. Therefore the $6.2 million will be held in the bank by the City, earning perhaps 0.5% interest, until it can be paid off in ten to 20 years. The cost of this will be $12 million.

Added together, the $6 million road infrastructure project will end up costing the taxpayers over $20 million. We are stuck with two loans for the same project — Double Jeopardy, I would call it. This is a huge price to pay for what amounts to an outright gift to Costco. We would not need the new roads if there were not a Costco project. People are not going hungry or having to dress in rags because we do not have a Costco.

The City sales tax and property tax revenues in 2011 were $5.5 million. How will Ukiah pay back these loans? Before you, the City Council, proceed with the I-Bank loan application, you and the citizens need to see the detailed projection of loan repayments, and RDA bond repayments over time. You need to consider how you can possibly pay back this huge sum — amounting to more than three times our yearly tax revenues! How are you going to pay? Do we really want a new Big Box Costco this bad?




Where did all the fish go in the Navarro?

Does anyone besides me remember fishing for steelhead and trout in the Navarro River between the 1960s through the 1980s?

I used to enjoy fishing with my dad and brother, when the Navarro River was plentiful with salmon and steelhead.

I could remember fishing at my favorite fishing hole on the river. It was called Ray's Hole on the Pinoli ranch back years ago. We had no problem catching our limits of steelhead between 25-38 inches long in January to March after a good rainstorm.

I can also remember back in the 1960s through the 1970s trout fishing up and down Indian Creek and Anderson Creek for pan-size steelhead trout. When you could still fish in the local creeks for trout with the limit being canned trout between 6 inches and 12 inches long that would be breakfast for that morning. Back then a hatchery used to stock the Navarro at the Greenwood Bridge between the 60s and the 80s. They stopped restocking the Navarro River around 1980.

By the 1990s my brother Jim and I found very few fish in the river anymore.

The past few years? Brother Jim's fishing has only gotten worse — the fish are gone.

Would someone please find out if it's possible to get the Navarro River once again restocked? So that children like my nephew and niece can also grow up fishing there?


Johnny Gromo





I didn't know it was Ash Wednesday, February 13, until I saw Michael Reagan with a dark smudge on his forehead yapping from a wall-mounted boob tube in a waiting area at Frisco's Fort Miley Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Lincoln Park. He was commenting to a goofy, stone-haired bimbo about President Obama's the State of the Empire address.

Ash Wednesday symbolizes our mortality, “ashes to ashes, dust to dust,” and begins the 40-day Lenten period commemorating JC's 40-day fast in the desert. To honor his sacrifice, all good Catholics are required to give up something they love for the 40-day period.

As a kid, I always gave up my favorite vegetables — canned spinach and canned asparagus. JC probably cheated some himself by foraging desert creatures to maintain strength. He also may have stashed some beer in one of those caves where they keep discovering new versions of the Gospel, the latest of which reveals that JC was married. His 40-day wilderness trip was probably a feeble attempt to get away from his nagging wife.

My trip to the VA Med Center was for “evaluation” regarding an Agent Orange disability claim which has been in the works for over a year. Travel to and from the Med Center was provided free by the DVA shuttle bus from the Ukiah VA Medical Clinic on Kings Court.

The bus departed Ukiah at 0700 with only five vets aboard, but after a Santa Rosa pickup the bus was crammed full of mostly gray and no-haired vets primarily of Korea/Vietnam vintage. There were even a few World War II vets who had to be over 90. The motley crew was all male except for one young woman who appeared to be of the current Sandstorm era and one World War II vet's wife.

Even with near gridlock from Sonoma County south we arrived in Frisco at 0930 and offloaded into the bowels of institutional medicine.

After check-in, I hunkered down in a waiting area dominated by a wall-mounted boob tube, anticipating a long ordeal. Armed with ballistic earplugs, I picked up and thumbed through a fascinating book, “The History of Point Arena.” A few other waiting male vets were zoned out staring at the tube while a very young “girl” vet who didn't look older than 16 thumbed her electronic gizmos and another slightly older female vet filled out forms.

After finishing the short first chapter on the Point Arena Pomos, I was called by Dr. Kim, a personable, efficient, clean-cut young man who also had a functional sense of humor — a must in this kind of work. After a brief discussion and “evaluation” he ordered a chest x-ray and scheduled a future visit for an echocardiogram.

The x-ray was completed quickly with no waiting and I was freed until the shuttle returned to Ukiah at 1400. With over three hours to kill I decided to recon the whole compound trying to avoid indoor waiting areas that were escalating into a depressing chaotic parade of walking, rolling, shuffling, strolling, wounded survivors of America's perpetual wars.

My greatest fear was being attacked by an antibiotic-resistant superbug, like c-diff, the one that killed my mother, so I kept moving, washed my hands frequently and spent most of the time outdoors.

On the north side of the compound, I discovered a broad terrace overlooking the ocean between Land's End and Dead Man's Point. The terrace was covered with a bright green manicured lawn that on closer inspection was actually Astroturf. A series of oddly configured synthetic picnic tables were regimentally spaced on the terrace providing outdoor seating for the adjoining chow hall which was called the “Canteen.”

The Canteen was elegant by military standards and they served chow on dishes rather than segmented metal trays. The multi-leveled seating area faced plate glass windows to the north reviewing an oceanview panorama.

My brown bag lunch from home included an apple and power bar, but I supplemented this meager fare with a medium coffee and killer brownie.

After noon chow at a picnic table, I sauntered over to a stone monument with a bronze plaque commemorating America's stunning victory in the Battle of the Bulge during World War II. Unfortunately America is getting its ample ass kicked in the second Battle of the Bulge — the bulging of Americans. We don't grow up, we grow out.

Near the monument, the Battle of the Bulge Memorial Trail traversed down a slope toward the Lincoln Park municipal golf course. The trail terminated at a paved road which sloped northbound to a hairpin where another trail emerged leading north down a series of steps terminating at an intersection with the Golden Gate National Recreation Area trail system.

From there a wide trail led to the eastern boundary of Lincoln Park near Eagle's Point offering panoramic views of the ocean and the rock piles off Land's End including the lighthouse at Mile Rock.

Returning by the same route, I arrived at the main compound in time to board the DVA shuttle back to Ukiah. The midafternoon traffic was minimal and the bus returned unscathed to Ukiah by 1700 where I boarded my rig and drove home, arriving at 1800. A long 12-hour day, but well worth the effort.

My friend, Debbie, a nurse at the Ukiah VA medical clinic, urged me to “get into the system” assuring me that the VA medical care is vastly improved since the horror days of the late 60s — my last contact with VA voodoo.

Reluctantly, I made the plunge and entered “the system” which is still tedious and annoying, but the “new VA” under General Shinseki is vastly improved. Yes, there are horror stories about vets being screwed over while trying to get compensation for service-connected medical conditions, but from my observations and testimony from other veterans the medical care is significantly better.

The medical staffers in Frisco are predominantly young, clean-cut, courteous, understanding, patient, helpful and respectful. Even the clerical system is efficient, orderly and people-friendly. Others, I'm sure, may have had negative experiences, but I suspect that those are atypical.

As an added bonus, the Frisco VA medical centers serves real coffee rather than GI dishwater.


Don Morris




Dear Editor:

Having written several Letters to the Editor regarding the boondoggle known as The North Coast Railroad Authority (NCRA), I read the letter of Bernie Meyers, a Director of NCRA, and will offer a few comments.

At the time the Legislature approved the NCRA, no doubt at the request of the northcoast Democrats, it should have been clear to anyone who bothered do even a brief analysis of the project that it was very likely to be an unsuccessful financial venture. The difficulty is readily apparent when you look at the description of the NCRA in Mr. Meyer's letter: “…is an independent state entity in charge of the 310-mile freight rail line between American Canyon and Humboldt Bay.” That means a goodly part of the line runs along the Eel River from Dos Rios to Loleta (the old rail route that was closed years ago) with an extension to Humboldt Bay.

And that is the problem. It is patently obvious for geological reasons it would be prohibitively costly to restore and maintain the old rail line. You might ask what is the freight this line is supposed to carry? I would suggest if you like a good laugh or perhaps a good cry you read the NCRA’s “business plan.” It is a pipedream.

And so what is left is a short line railroad between nowhere and nowhere. To compound matters NCRA is not managed well and they gave a sweetheart contract to the separate operating company (NWP) which has generated zero income for NCRA. Mr. Meyers is calling for “a prompt, comphrensive, outside evaluation/audit is required for the good of the taxpayers…” I can tell Mr. Meyers where not to go. A few months ago I wrote a letter to Senate Speaker Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and advised him of the problems of NCRA and suggested the Legislature might want to review the situation since they were responsible for its creation. In response I got a very snarky letter telling me that since NCRA currently is not a budget item its problems were of no concern to the Legislature. In other words, although they created the problem, the problem is not their concern. It is always easier to stick your head in the sand rather than deal with your problems.

In peace,

James G. Updegraf





We would like to lend our voices to a reader’s quote in the 2/13 issue of “Off The Record” regarding the possibility of your going to an on-line only version of the AVA. The reader says he/she is an ardent fan but would not read it on-line. The reader is willing to pay a bit more for the subscription to keep the print version. We have been fans of the AVA for over 25 years but we will not read newspapers on-line. It would be worth a rate increase to keep up our subscription to this worthwhile newspaper.


Billie & John Crowley




Dear AVA,

In October, 1963 mobster Joseph “Joe Cargo” Valachi revealed in sworn testimony before the US Senate the history, operations and rituals of the Sicilian-American Mafia, whose existence corrupt FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover had previously denied. Valachi’s testimony, broadcast on radio and television and published in newspapers, was devastating to the mob.

The good citizens of Anderson Valley are experiencing a kindred moment of clarity in regards to the local gangsters known as the Clearwater Mafia, a collection of con artists and psychopaths every bit as shadowy and dangerous as their Sicilian counterparts. For years moles within the Clearwater Mafia have funneled invaluable information to their government handlers. While not jeopardizing ongoing operations or agent identities, it would be prudent to share some information so your readers may protect themselves from local racketeers.

The Sicilian Mafia was born in the town of Corleone, Sicily. The Clearwater Mafia began in Philo, California — both locations are famous for wine, sheep and pleasant climates.

The Sicilian Mafia has its roots in the thousands of Italian immigrants who traveled to America in the early 1900s in search of food, jobs and dignity. The Clearwater Mafia has its roots in dozens of immigrants to Anderson Valley in the 1970s, searching for peace, love and dope.

The Sicilian Mafia began by extorting fellow Italian immigrants into paying protection money. The Clearwater Mafia began by exploiting developmentally disabled wards of the state.

The Sicilian Mafia’s preferred methods of attack are .38 revolvers, piano wire and car bombs. The Clearwater Mafia’s preferred weapons are no performance evaluations, tenure, closed session meetings, and fractional employment schemes that allow members full retirement benefits paid for by taxpayer money while most Americans continue to slide into uninsured poverty.

The Sicilian Mafia’s favorite expression is “Fuggedaboutit.” The Clearwater Mafia’s pet phrase is, “We’re doing this for the children.”

The Sicilian Mafia prefers designer suits, shiny shoes, and lots of gold jewelry. The Clearwater Mafia is partial to hypo-allergenic sweaters with whale embroidery, Birkenstock sandals, and patchouli oil.

The Sicilian Mafia likes to vacation in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and the Bahamas. The Clearwater Mafia likes to vacation in Thailand, Mexico and India.

The Sicilian Mafia worships The Godfather by Francis Ford Coppola. The Clearwater Mafia congregates beneath full moons on Holmes Ranch to re-enact The Big Chill and The Color Purple.

The Sicilian Mafia likes to feast on pasta, meatballs and red wine. The Clearwater Mafia likes to get stoned, eat organic popcorn, and drink kombucha.

The Sicilian Mafia prides itself on eliminating enemies. The Clearwater Mafia prides itself on destroying anyone who questions its power.

The Sicilian Mafia is homophobic. The Clearwater Mafia is allodoxaphobic, which is the irrational fear of opinions, common in extreme fundamentalist groups where free-thinking can be dangerous to their rigid belief-structure.

The Sicilian Mafia does not allow Mexican Americans as members, though will work with them on drug deals, bank robberies and gambling. The Clearwater Mafia does not allow Mexican Americans as members, but will tell them how to vote, what to think, and that white liberals from mediocre schools sucking greedily at the public teat is a divine birthright for teachers with credentials from web-based therapeutic universities.

A prospective Sicilian Mafia member must commit murder in order to “make his bones,” and thus prove his dedication. A prospective Clearwater Mafia member must commit to murdering the prospects of future generations of America with their deadly stupidity and frightening greed.

The Sicilian Mafia gets rich from its control of the construction and garbage unions. The Clearwater Mafia gets rich from its control of the Teachers Union, district contracts, and unreported grant subsidies funneled to friends and family.

The Sicilian Mafia controls narcotics, prostitution and gambling. The Clearwater Mafia keeps students and parents drugged through pure bullshit, delights in prostituting others, and gambles away the future of AV students everyday.

The Sicilian Mafia has seen its ranks decimated by RICO Act convictions, government wiretaps, and plea-deal testimony from former members. The Clearwater Mafia has seen its ranks swell and even prosper, as its ruthless leadership continues to protect itself from prosecution by a cunning strategy of blatant Brown Act violations, nepotism and parent-teacher conferences.

Protect your children and yourselves from this awful menace.

Silent no longer,

Salvatore ‘Sal the Books’ Guiliano

Indian Creek



Dear AVA,

Kudos to Debbie Sanchez for speaking the truth at last night's emergency board meeting to decide the fate of Principal Jim Tomlin. When a parent texted me this morning with the alarming news that Tomlin had fired Baseball Coach Ben Anderson because the administration "wanted to go in a different direction," I was disgusted but not surprised. Mr. Tomlin revealed with this most recent folly his gross unsuitability for the job of principal. He lost a democratic vote. And in his selfish quest for revenge, he tried to derail an entire sport and season for the players and students.

Now I learn that today's game, the first of the season, has been canceled. Why? Because of Tomlin's appalling ignorance? What a joke. He should be fired immediately, if he doesn't have the honor to resign. But of course he won't resign: he's a vindictive coward with an IQ falling between carrot and radish, as he proves time and again. And this is the person many AV teachers want to be their leader? Shame on all of you.

Cancel Tomlin, not baseball. Cancel the teachers, not democracy.

A Concerned Old Timer






You did it Bro! You got rid of Jim Tomlin! Last year at the Fair Grounds 4th of July party you remarked to a member of our family, "We're going to get rid of Tomlin".

I never thought you could do it but you have! Another rumor floating around is your remark "I've got Erica and Yadira in my pocket." Wow!

A Tinker to Evans to Chance (Anderson to Lemons to Sanchez) . A double play! That's an accomplishment!

My 3 year old grand =daughter has a favorite expression "You're not listening!" Out of the mouths of babes come wisdom. That certainly was true last night at the special School Board Meeting. Anderson, Lemons, and Sanchez completely ignored the voices of the community to reconsider your decision.

Jerry Cox




Dear Bruce,

Tomlin's capability as principal has been in question since day one, long before the incident that occurred with my son last year. It is a naive assumption to think the school board chose to not renew his contract based on that situation alone.

People may not agree with how the voting transpired but I would hope everyone would have the kids best interest at heart and do their best to put personal feelings aside to help guide them through this transition with as little discord as possible . I have no doubt the next few months will be difficult for everyone, regardless of where their loyalties lie. How people handle this situation will be a great test in character and I trust the focus will be on moving forward in a positive manner.

I have heard from both faculty members and parents who are dissatisfied with administration but are afraid of speaking out for fear retribution. Today their fears were validated when Ben Anderson was fired as the baseball coach with no explanation. There is no excuse for this kind of retaliation, it just corroborates what many people have known along; that Jim Tomlin makes irrational, biased decisions with no thought of propriety. Last I heard JR had intervened and was once again making up for Tomlin’s ineptitude by reversing the decision...but what lies ahead remains to be seen.

I have a lot of love for this community, for this school and for these kids and I believe the school board made an informed decision with the best interest of these things in mind.


Kerri Sanchez


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