Press "Enter" to skip to content

Letters To The Editor



What a difference a year makes!

Howard Hospital, what has happened to the patient/customer friendly small town hospital we had?

Back in 2011, I had the misfortune to be hospitalized FIVE times. Two for elective knee replacements, and three for emergency surgeries. As you can imagine, the hospital bills were staggering. By the grace of God I had purchased my own insurance the year before. Still, the amounts left over after insurance had paid were prohibitive. I received several statements and finally called to inquire about financial assistance. It was granted and the friendly people in the hospital's finance department were a pleasure to work with.

Fast forward to 2012.

I had some Lab work done on two different occasions. Sept 2012 and Dec. 2012.

I received ONE statement on those accounts after my insurance had paid. Not able to pay at that time, I called and inquired about the same assistance program. Only now I was talking to someone in St. Helena. Something seemed very different! She barely seemed to comprehend the program I was asking about. Finally she understood and the paper work was sent. I filled it out and returned it on Jan. 22, 2013. (It was mailed to St. Helena). I did not hear back from them until Mar. 25, 2013. Assistance was denied.

I called to inquire why it had been denied since my wages had dropped drastically since 2012 when it was approved.

The woman I spoke with said, “Well your tax returns don't show that.” I said, “Well the new returns would but I don't have them yet.” They were basing their denial on information that was over a year old. She said I could reapply. The amount of paper work required was daunting. I then asked her if I could arrange to make payments. She said “Yes, you will receive another statement and you can go from there.”

That was the end of March 2013. I never received another statement from them on either account.

It should be noted that this is about the same time that Adventist Health consolidated its billing function for all five its hospitals in its newly formed “Adventists Health Northern Network.” The billing center would now be in Windsor, CA, and about a dozen HMH employees were affected. Patients at Howard Hospital no longer have a friendly, familiar voice to answer your billing questions.

I never heard another word from them until May 26, 2013 when I got a bill from a collection agency for the first bill. I immediately called the number listed at Adventist Financial Services and asked why? “Well, you didn't pay”.

I asked why I hadn't received a statement. I was told that the hospital no longer had a record of that account since it was sent to collections, and that I would have to contact that agency about the matter.

I asked about the other account and was told it was “in the chute” to go to collections this week.

I asked how I could stop that from happening. “Pay the bill right now.” she said.

“Can I make a payment on it?” I inquired. “No the whole thing has to be paid,” she said. “That is the only way.”

I asked her why I had not received any more statements after the original one. She had to ask her supervisor. “Well, if the client doesn't pay after the first one, we assume they aren't going to pay, so we save on postage by not mailing out multiple statements.” WHAT??

I asked, “Even if a payment has been made on the account?” (which I had made on this one.)

She said “Yes.”

Well then, how the heck is a person to know how much more they owe? What is happening here? This has all taken place in the last six months! Not a year. Not two. SIX MONTHS!!!!

Is Adventists Health that hard up for cash?

Frank R. Howard Hospital has a reputation for being a treasured gem in our small community. The physicians and nurses and staff provide patient care that is unequaled in most places. And for us to have this in Willits is such a blessing.

In the years before I had insurance, the staff in the back offices of financial services were people we knew. Friendly people who were on your side and eager to help you work through the maze of higher and higher hospital bills. They cared as much about the patient as the doctors and nurses at Howard.

Now, a year later, that is not the case. My impression of the Adventist Health System Finance Dept is that they could care less about the people they are tossing to the proverbial wolves.

I should note that I have taken care of those bills. But, what about the people who don't have any recourse but to be at their mercy?

What has happened to our friendly little small town hospital?

Nothing good has come from the ever growing list of changes that Adventist has implemented so far. Is this the price we have to pay for the new hospital?

Please, Howard Hospital, bring back our friendly, small town, superior service. We don't want you to be “Just like all the others.”

Roni McFadden





I can't tell you how to run your paper, but gee, Wouldn't it be appropriate to demand that Moore come clean on the Bari bombing, before she is allowed to take up space for whining about how no one wants to follow her 'leadership?'

My understanding is that the statute of limitations has passed on any possible charges, so why not come clean on what really happened?

Mark Richie

San Francisco

Ed reply: The statute doesn't run on murder or attempted murder which, in this case, is an either/or since Bari, in perfect health before she was bombed, probably died of the injuries she sustained. I'm sure Mary would like to see the case solved, but there's not much chance of that what with the Pacifica Network Gang and Cherney's Norcal idiot posse still running interference for the myths. Cherney continues to make a ghoulish living off the myths, while Pacifica's great speakers-of-truth-to-power maintain a herd of sacred cows less plausible than those of outback Hindus.



Dear AVA,

Life is not fair, and death should be more bio-degradable.

About 20 years ago a teenage family member died and we explored options for organic internment. One option we investigated was to have home burial for the body and a ceremony in memory. The Burial Project from the Russian River area came to our home to consult on the subject, although I can no longer find them on the Internet.

If we applied for a burial permit, we would be submitting a formal request creating sanctified land on our property — forevermore. This burial plot on private sanctimonious land would be properly designated as a family gravesite, formal or informal, and attached to the description on the deed of trust. Naturally, some people with long illnesses have plenty of time to prepare for the permit. Others, not.

The pitfalls of even legal burial on family land is that if the property ever goes outside of the family, someone unrelated may own your loved-one’s bones and gravesite — unless you move the remains and take them with you for reburial elsewhere. Ghoulish, but true, this happens. The legal wrangling can be tedious and hideous. Expect one or the other. They all require permits to be legal.

One thing some familiesdo when they take such chances and don’t have time for or don’t want to apply for a permit, is to pay for a regular gravesite in a cemetery plot; secretly weight a “closed” casket to the body weight of the deceased at the time of death; and have a closed casket funeral ceremony with following burial of the mock weighted coffin (sans body) in a regular cemetery. Then hope attendees and authorities believe what they think they’ve seen.

In actuality, you have a small closed-lip private funeral wherever you’ve chosen as your family plot on your private land. Some mourners like the idea of hiding the gravesite in plain sight, rendering it totally biodegradable, site unseen. Others make formal fences, a park or orchard, designating the gravesite in that protected way.

The Burial Project introduced sturdy enough corrugated cardboard coffins which were bio-degradable and would go dust to dust back to the earth with the cadaver, most easily. Today I notice that mushrooms are used to help the body decompose even faster. No cost for embalming, viewing hall, formal coffin and especially, the vault — which are all meant to strangely preserve the deceased’s body. Buddhists cremate the body to help the spirit of the person go on to their next best good. Body preservation is anathema to Buddhist belief.

Preservation of the dead is unnatural. Unless you’re planning on moving the remains around as many times as Lincoln’s well-traveled corpse (which, is reported to still look marvelous after several exhumations); why would you need preservation of the remains?

Some folks choose the secret funeral on private land without a permit, so they don’t get hassled. However, it is almost impossible to keep those attending the private ceremony silent about the nature of the organic funeral located on family land — for all the obvious reasons the Hamburg family is unpleasantly experiencing presently after releasing information about the burial of their beloved on family land without a permit.

Like everything else in life, choice is usually preferred, but there are sensible reasons to not let the burial of human remains happen in watersheds, flood zones, and many other obvious preserved “zones.”

Sanctimonious: Humble, meek, modest, holy.

Dan Hamburg: Pecksniffian, deceiving, false, goody-goody, holier than thou, hypocritical, insincere, pious, self-satisfied, smug, stuffy, unctuous.

The exact opposite of sanctimonious.

No wonder he didn’t know about it.


Name withheld

The Mendocino Coast



Dear AVA,

Thank you for your reporting of the Board of Supervisors meetings. I particularly appreciate the long verbatim quotes and conversations and exchanges because along with your personal commentary I feel I get a more accurate view than I could get anywhere else.

In particular, your May 22 article was satisfyingly informative.

This latest board sounds pretty good inasmuch as the members are putting energy, thought, time, conviction, curiosity, and opinion into the somewhat morass-y job they have. I am less worried about whether or not the Board of Supervisors can handle our county business than I have been in a long, long time. That may be because it's all less of a mystery thanks to your reportage. Or maybe the board's makeup is finally a good balance of good people. Or, or…

I also like the article not being in two places. It was all on page 10. It's easy to cut out and send off or xerox. (I'm from the old school.)

Could you do me a favor? Whoever does the manbeater thing — it's really not helping anyone, especially women. Think about it. Pass on my feelings of alarm to the person who does it. (Is it Bruce Anderson?) I think that it will just rile guys up even more. Thanks!

Also, keep the print edition up! I have no computer and lots of other people don't either, believe it or not.

Name withheld,




Warm spiritual greetings,

A friend of mine sent me a critical email, suggesting that my present homelessness and inactivity in the world is possibly due to my own flaws, and that society does not appreciate my past efforts as much as I would otherwise like to believe. For the sake of clarity, please appreciate the fact that my only serious desire is to be a willing instrument in the hands of the Divine Spiritual Absolute. I am open to joining a spiritual community and living as a monk, or else being in society doing whatever I am spiritually called to do. Regardless, I look forward to moving on from homelessness in California, and going in whatever spiritual direction is deemed best by the Higher Power. Thank you for listening.

Craig Louis Stehr


Mailing address: c/o NOSCW, P.O. Box 11406,

Berkeley, CA 94712-2406




To the Editor:

As a longtime admirer of Bruce McEwen’s work, it is with heavy heart I write to correct some recent assertions made in the June 12 AVA.

In his front page article (“The Slungshot/Rope Lock”) detailing the week’s courthouse goings-on, McEwen describes a hearing held in Judge Henderson’s court in which DA Dave Eyster sought to violate Craig Barnett’s probation. Much of the information written was incorrect, starting with the misspelling of Mr. Barnett’s lawyer’s name, Lewis Finch.

The article then seeks to illustrate how inept the attorney is by pointing out that Finch was not hired as the Alternate Defender when a co-worker, Bert Schlosser, departed the office. The story says former Public Defender Patricia Littlefield was then appointed. Little of this is true.

Finch did not apply for a job which Schlosser did not hold, and did not step down from. The job was vacated by Berry Robinson 18 months ago and Patricia Littlefield was appointed. Ms. Littlefield has never, in her 26 years as a Mendocino County lawyer, been employed in the public defender’s office, always having been an associate of Richard Petersen’s law firm

Lewis Finch is described as a “piss poor lawyer” but no survey of local lawyers and judges would agree with this defamation, and in fact I’d bet most would say Finch ranks among the best criminal lawyers in the county. McEwen’s notion that Littlefield came to be the Alternate Defender “to handle all the serious cases” is unsupportable. In the past quarter century Finch has represented hundreds — perhaps thousands — of clients charged with everything in the penal code, from rape and murder to shoplifting and probation violations.

It should be emphasized that violating a defendant’s probation involves the lowest standard of proof in the entire criminal justice system. Think about it: The defendant is a convicted criminal and he agrees, as part of his probation, to obey all laws, including not dropping a gum wrapper on the sidewalk. A “preponderance” (a scant 51%) of the evidence is sufficient to violate, which makes it the lowest threshold in the business. For a DA to violate someone’s probation is equivalent to shotgunning fat trout in a small birdbath.

Yet Finch prevails. Eyster loses. McEwen cannot believe what he sees, and cannot believe it again when he writes the story, so he attributes the judge’s decision to a shady allegation that “something must be up.” He then thinks the DA’s “Maybe were just trying to show that the (Alternate Defender attorneys) are something more than welfare recipients after all.”

Well, OK, but I suspect McEwen’s ongoing and nonstop criticism of public defender lawyers coupled with his relentless admiration for prosecutors suggests something other than disdain for those on welfare.

Thomas Hine (Alternate Defender Investigator)





Why put a minimum on a prison term if you are going to put “life” on it too? The odds that you will get out even if you're a saint are slim to none — closer to none. I give props to the people who come in jumping through hoops from day one knowing this yet they still do their best, all for what? To go sit in front of a group of people called “the parole board” so they can be told it's not good enough even though the lifer is well over his minimum and has done everything the board asked of him and more but it's still not good enough? WTF?

Imagine this. Or, wait, know this: A 57-year-old man got a 10 year denial because the board said he was arrogant for going to the board without a lawyer and he got written up for tobacco, refusing a cell move, and betting a few bucks on a game. He has done 32 years on a 15 to life sentence for second-degree murder which he lost at trial. 32 years in here and they just gave him ten more. His health is poor and he has major heart issues.

How do you feel California? Do you like paying for that? No? Then speak up. There are thousands of lifers who never got any write-ups and are way past their minimum time and have done all they can to rehabilitate themselves. No wonder the prisons are full. They never let anyone out. I hope this gives you just a little insight on things here in prison.

Also, you think your taxes are high now? Let the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation keep this up for 10 more years. You should really look at the price of prisons. Stop being brainwashed by the media to vote for more time for more crimes because as I see it there's still crime and if you keep people locked away long enough it really makes them worse because they get stuck with prison mentalities and can't readjust.

Shayne Wrede, CDCR AB3900

CSP Solano 13-3-1

PO Box 4000

Vacaville, CA 95696




The Anderson Valley Ambulance Service and Calstar, the medical air evacuation helicopter outfit in Ukiah, are nonprofit, non-tax supported services. The Ambulance Service in particular exists because of the commitment of many volunteers to respond day or night to help our community. When you become a member or make a donation you are supporting our incredible volunteers and investing in the quality of life in Anderson Valley. We need your support, so become a member, make a donation or volunteer.

The ambulance service annual tri-tip barbecue will be Sunday, August 18 from 4-7pm at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds. To volunteer call Art Hatcher at 895-3123. For questions about the membership program called Martha Hyde at 895-3795. Combined memberships for Calstar and the Ambulance Service are $80 per year for you and your family. Membership in the Ambulance Service only is $50 per year.

We thank Ron Jester who is retiring from his ambulance work after 30 years. On behalf of the crew and the board of the Anderson Valley Ambulance service, thank you for your ongoing support.

Jim Taul, Board Member, Membership Coordinator

Anderson Valley Ambulance Service

PO Box 144, Boonville CA 95415.




The Mendocino coast lost a valuable emergency asset on Wednesday afternoon, that's when Janie Tate went to sleep for the last time never to hear another emergency call on her Ham radio. Silent Key, as we Hams say.

Many of you knew Janie through her long musical career and other pursuits, but behind the scenes she was quite active in emergency Ham radio communications, using the FCC assigned call sign, KI6CHA, while she was on the air.

Janie along with Erif Thunen, KI6GGD, were the founders of the weekly Monday Noon, Albion emergency Ham radio net that meets on the 2 Meter frequency band on 147.570 MHz, and Janie was also instrumental in starting the countywide simplex emergency net called “Walking Repeaters” that meets about 8 Pm every Wednesday evening on 145.555 MHz.

Both of these nets will be able to provide local and long distance emergency communications even if the whole State is without power, and some of us will be able to continue for well over a week if need be, because we prepare for a disaster and test our systems on a regular basis, and Janie was was always there to help out a new Ham with any kind of technical or other problem so they could also be ready to serve if needed.

The nets continue to be active and ready to provide emergency communications during an emergency or disaster, local or large scale. Anyone can listen in to the nets with a radio scanner tuned to the frequencies listed above, and we could always use new Hams, young to old, so think about becoming a Ham radio operator, it's actually quite easy as Janie would have told you herself, because she we a big promoter of Ham radio and the value to her community performing this valuable public service.

Janie will be missed, on the air, and at our club meetings and yearly holiday party, she was always a welcome presence.

Thanks to Erif for posting the notice to us Hams.

I have no other information about Janie, as I just got the message yesterday afternoon, but I did want to write something about the “invisible” public service she provided for the safety and well being of us all here on the Mendocino coast.

73, Janie, you Rock, we miss you.

Derek - KE6EBZ





My retro problem. Excuse me brother, I'm lost. Could you please return me to the 20th century? I tried to learn computers but the mouse bit me. I'm looking to buy a car without electric windows. My priest told me I'd have to go to Cuba. Like Merle Haggard I wish a buck was still silver. I've never gone online, downloaded, or owned a cell phone. Al and me — we're displaced persons. Too old to adapt and too young to die. It's quite a dilemma.

Captain Fathom





AVArts, AV Chamber of Commerce and Boonville businesses are currently organizing the 16th annual Boonville ArtWalk for Saturday, July 6th from noon-6pm.

Participating artists and craftspeople this year include: Peggy Dart, Paula Gray, Sony Hatcher, Rainbow Hill, Charlie Hochberg, Dennis Hudson, Tom McFadden, Cathleen Michaels & Anderson Valley Students, Alan Porter, Terry Ryder, Ismael Sanchez, Colleen Schenck, Susan Spencer & Michael Wilson, Dan Sitts, Denver Tuttle, Xenia King, Jan Wax & Chris Bing and others.

Tara Lane will be offering a special kids' art activity on the lawn at Rookie-To, from noon-2pm. The gallery will be hosting a “meet the artists” reception, with music by Wild Oats, from 4-6pm. Lauren's will also be hosting a reception, from 3-6pm, is featuring a special show of “Wildflowers of Ernest Clayton” (the grandfather Gene Herr and Nancy Praetzel). Aquarelle will have its wine bar open, and appetizers available, throughout the event.

There are still venues available for local artists and craftspeople who would like to participate in this fun event. Send an email to, or call 895-2204, for more information.

Anderson Valley Arts





In 1967, when I was an 8th grader at Redwood Valley Junior High, I attended 8th grade outdoor science camp at El Rancho Navarro. This was in the days before the environmental movement took over what has now become “environmental education” (logger bad – hippie good). Of course, the “environmentalists” never say anything about the thousands of acres of clear cuts by the wine/booze industry. Clear cuts in the manner of complete stripping of the land right down to bare mineral soil. Even the worst of the loggers managed to leave some duff on the ground.

But I digress. Our science camp was run by teachers from RVJH, for better or worse.

I won’t speak to the worse, but the best was a great teacher by the name of Charlotte Campbell, who actually taught us about the workings of nature while on the trail. And there was a cute little art teacher who taught us how to make plaster masks of our faces along the sandy banks of the river. Of course we fine young gentlemen managed to remove her panties from the clothes line behind her cabin. We didn’t know what to do with them once we had them, but at least we had them.

Name Withheld

Redwood Valley



(Of course if Charles Hurwitz wanted to do it…)

To the Editor:

I’ve been following, with sympathy for the parties involved, the issues presented by Dan Hamburg’s decision to bury his wife, Carrie, on their rural property without required governmental approval. Dan’s and Tom Allman’s positions are the easiest to understand. Dan loved his wife; she wanted to be buried there. Tom doesn’t want to precipitate a problem over an issue that will be around for awhile; in the short term nothing turns on the answers, so he wants to sit back an see if and how it works out. Barry Vogel is the guy I’m sorry for. His best pal of many years has done some thing blatantly illegal that is now being publicized, and Barry is expected to come up with a solution.

But once the wave of sympathy passes, I’m left with the belief there are a couple of issues pre- sented by these events that are too important to push under the rug. The first is that a modern society, even a small rural society like ours in Mendocino County, won’t work well if either(i) just a few self-selected people like Dan Hamburg, or the rich client Doug Bosco wrote about a few days ago in the Press Democrat, can decide what rules will apply to the use of scarce resources like real estate, or (ii) every property owner can decide for themselves what rules will apply to the use of real estate.

The second issue implicates Barry Vogel’s argument that the State constitutional right of privacy allows a surviving husband to bury his wife on a piece of property without regard to State and Local laws governing burials and land use.

Probably, or at least possibly, Dan and Barry believe the County Counsel and Board of Supervisors, along with the Sheriff, will want to avoid appearing heavy handed with Dan and will reach a compromise that will allow this grave site to remain where it is and resolve the lawsuit in a manner that even provides Barry with a legal fee, paid by the County, for reaching a successful resolution to a novel and difficult constitutional law question. I think either result would be a serious mistake.

It is, and always has been, a basic tenant of State and Federal law that property – real and personal – should be used and usable over time consistently with the rules governing its use. Even an “owner” can’t create a nuisance, pollute, or waste property, thereby taking it out of the economy, because later on its proper use will be important to the viability of the area of its location. Allowing a current owner to devote a parcel of real estate to use as a cemetery is contrary to these concepts, at least without clear rules governing parcel size, additional or future grave sites, maintenance, closure, etc. Obviously, no one would argue that every owner of a city lot can decide by themself to create a permanent grave site on the lot; so, the question arises: how large does the parcel have to be, and what other characteristics must it have, before its owner can unilaterally turn it into a cemetery; does the owner have to accept for burial anyone who applies, or can he/she control access? These questions are too important to let Dan decide by himself. When he became a supervisor he swore to uphold the laws and constitution of the State. He should back off his current stand and do so.

But, that’s not the end of the matter. Barry’s constitutional argument should also be expressly rejected, not just left unanswered. The “right of privacy” protects living individuals – that is not Carrie, only Dan – from certain governmental, or governmentally supported, intrusions. It does not provide an individual with authority to overturn or ignore existing, well established rules in order to carry out private desires that can be attained only by violating existing law. The County Counsel and the Sheriff need to make that clear, not back away from the issue.

Jared G. Carter





The Stornetta Public Lands have been a great boon to the south coast, and indeed to the whole county. Congressman Jared Huffman’s bill, HR 1411, would make the Stornetta Public Lands part of the California Coastal National Monument, bringing greater environmental protection while allowing continued low-level livestock grazing.

This bill is especially important in the light of ongoing efforts to add a large parcel to the existing Stornetta Lands. If the south coast ends up with miles of scenic Coastal Trail, it will be a good for our lifestyle, our economy and our children!

A threat to this dream has arisen in a set of amendments to the bill authored by Congressman Bishop of Utah. One amendment would block use of the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund to purchase additional Monument lands, effectively killing the land acquisition projects now in the works.

Another amendment would make grazing an actual purpose of the National Monument. It would reduce the BLM’s discretionary authority while adding a pointless administrative burden. The Stornetta Lands already support livestock, and there is absolutely no need for this amendment.

Please contact Senators Boxer and Feinstein via their websites and ask them to work to get the Bishop amendments stripped from Huffman’s HR 1411:


Lori Hubbart

Point Arena




You guys should take a nice little snapshot of that pipe sucking up our water and delivering it to Skoll’s “estate,” and file an official complaint with the County. It’s in violation of code, and the County could act on it if they had an official complaint and evidence. That’s if you actually want to stick it to ol’ Jeffrey. I’m not one for letting rich people do as they damn well please.

Name Withheld

San Francisco



To the Editor of the Mighty AVA,

A response to Sheri Cronin's letter to the editor in the June 5, AVA.

In a nation completely enthralled with the internal combustion engine in its many mobile forms no approval is needed to allow a gang of 500 yahoo dirt bikes to terrorize our streets and byways.

The gearhead culture is allowed to run amok with rallies and races, noise pollution and resource wasting with herd mania because these juvenile events help lay a very necessary a smokescreen over the looming facts of post-peak oil reality. The further into oil depletion we get, the louder and ruder all this horsepower denial will get.

Every year starting on Memorial Day the assault begins with the rude asshole loudpipe Harley morons. One of the ugly sounds of summer in Touristaville. Also the idiot oversized-tire small-mind loudpipe illiterates with the hog diesel pickups pulling big fat trailers for their big fat wives and kids. Off-road exhaust on a turbodiesel V8. Freedom of speech at its finest! Welcome to the nightmare of antisocial powerless gottabecool fools wielding rude motor vehicles in a last-ditch effort to kick back the stench of the dead horse that the internal combustion engine is.

Honestly, what future do these hoodwinked fools have to forge a new identity outside the prison of the crankshaft? Automania with its manifold destinies of interstates and highways, suburbs and parking malls, total incursions into public spaces, is a very convincing organization of personal motion for the juvenile, the nostalgic and the consumer as identity slave. What a pathetic and costly display these pimped out idiots in their chumpmobiles expressing themnonselves in carcult socializing rolling toward hell. Carbon fashion show. Oil war cheerleaders. Personal doom factories.

The main reason our county is open to gearhead invasion is that we live in a country totally hoodwinked on private engine tyranny. A country with criminally degenerate public transportation. A culture of narcissism is the collateral damage required to sell cars while undermining a sane and civilized public transportation system.

The main reason vehicle code violations such as mufflerless Harleys, off-road mufflers on diesels and 4x4 rock-throwing idiot tires hanging out of fenders will never be enforced is a lack of concern for the quality of life for us common folk by federal and state governments.

Another very local reason is that regardless of vehicle codes and the great potential for violation revenue, enforcement isn't going to happen because too many of the officers responsible for keeping idiot morons in compliance are themselves macho giantruck jerks and juvenile in your face types.

Rather than open our County up to dipshit movies and rude chump tourism, wouldn't intelligent county supervision enforce noise pollution laws and put us on the map as a place to come for civilized people who actually want to get away from asshole rude-is-cool fools in their egomania machines?

Or maybe I'm waxing idealistic delusion here. Maybe tourism in Mendocino would collapse if word got out that rude is not welcome here. Of course, we have more than enough rude humans here already, don't we? Maybe as a society the majority of people are already so abused by constant noise and ugly that there simply are not enough of us left to practice civility who don't already live out here for that very reason.

If Mendocino were a progressive county, noise pollution and moron culture would be unwelcome here. From billionaire Lear-jets to petty loudpipe illiterates: Go somewhere else! Dream on and good luck!

Marvin Blake




Dear AVA,

First of all I'd like to thank you for your honest editorials and your commitment to honoring the truth. I wish more media sources were as dedicated to realism. My name is R. Hollis Bullard and I am currently a prisoner in California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's CTF Soledad institution. I am attending college and I have found my new passion in life — writing. It's like my eyes have been opened for the first time and clarity is at an all-time high. I must be honest with you, I am a little nervous to share my poetry, but I would like to see if it can help anyone or maybe inspire someone like I have been. Also, I would like the AVA's honest input on my writing. Being judged by literary professionals would let me know where I stand. This poem is called “Khonsu.” It means moon in Egyptian and I hope you like it.

* * *

She speaks, she speaks to me from outside my window

She speaks of majestic peace and a promise tomorrow

Of beauty so pleasantly remarkable that I could never fully receive it

She speaks all the mysteries of the breathtaking blue Venus

She says it's all right to cry even at the death of a flower

Because that too deserves all the tears of life

She speaks of reflection and says, “one who seeks himself

must first objectively and completely lose himself”

I hang nervously on the twilight of her every blessed word

Like a small child at bedtime in awe of her, she that speaks to me

She tells me I'm an “old soul” yet I feel like an infant

In her extraordinary presence with her all knowing gaze

I tell her I haven't seen near enough and she whispers in my ear,

“You will give it time and you will see it all…”

— R. Hollis Bullard

* * *

That's pretty much it for now him. I have a bunch more if you're interested and if not, I understand. I would still really appreciate your input and I'm open to all mail! If anyone would like to share poetry with me feel free to print my address. Thank you once again for your time and your commitment to the moral side of media!


Ralph Hollis Bullard AM4454

CTF North WB 302-U

PO Box 705

Soledad, CA 93960

PS. If by some miracle you decide to print my poem please send me a copy of the issue.

Ed note: A little hackneyed, too unreflective of contemporary male-female relationships. But not bad for a beginner, and poetry like most things, gets better the more you do it. Try writing exactly what you're seeing there. The closer you get to the truth of things, the better your creative work will be. Get an anthology of modern American poetry out of the prison library. You'll see what the standards are.




This letter of mine is about our country’s obsession with North Korea and Iran in that they are a threat to us by building nuclear weapons. North Korea is surrounded by China, Japan, South Korea, Russia, among other close by Asian nations. Nobody wants to see any other country build nuclear weapons, but these surrounding countries being close have more disputes with each other, but they don’t seem to be that worried of anybody starting a nuclear war.

Then we have Iran surrounded by Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Pakistan and all of Europe not far away and they all seem to be not that worried.

When one considers that we spend more money than all the rest of the world combined on military, since World War II we have not had a major war. Why? Since for years we had a Cold War with our major adversary Russia. The great difference is that the head honchos of all countries realize that in a nuclear war there is no place to hide and they would disappear like the rest of us. With our arsenal of nuclear weapons we would obliterate a country and maybe the world.

The point of all this is that we have spent ourselves into a hole. We could have a big defense force for one quarter of the amount we are spending and probably still be the biggest military establishment in the world. This is one big way we could cut down our national debt. We are a huge powerful nation, but nobody or country can pile on debt like we are and have been doing without a financial holocaust.

It all boils down to out of control campaign contributions, and the demands that those who give the money expect and get their demands. If you’ve read the newspapers recently several of our big cities have joined the financial holocaust.

Emil Rossi



  1. melody carter March 15, 2015

    You poem is beautiful , Her middle name is Leviah and it is Hebrew girls name meaning Lioness of the Lord.Thanks for sharing.

  2. Rick Weddle February 9, 2021

    Dear Editors! Hello, and mo’ Aloha, Mike and Bruce and all the AVA heroes. I’m in the process of moving, and seem to have misplaced the AVA’s snail-mail address in Boonville. Could you please refresh my memory, if you do indeed still have a PO box or something there. I believe you still have my email addy…
    Thank you, once more.

    • Bruce Anderson February 9, 2021

      Box 459, Boonville, Ca.

Leave a Reply to melody carter Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *