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Letters (Apr 9, 2014)

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Hello my fellow Mendonites.

I apologize that my reporting arrived a couple of days late. I did not intend to keep you all waiting as if we were the land and Jerry was the rain. I doubt/drought that. Anyway, I had my tickets rescinded being that I didn't purchase them at the Capitol Wolf ticket booth nor at the office of legal affairs. I guess us Mendonites know an organic breed from those who feed on pesticides which I feel is the lowest count of radioactive matter. Try putting that in your coffee and drinking it. Apparently that's what Jerry Brown and his administration did. I had to choke the fly that was in the room for the information which was a difficult task because of all the crap he's been eating mixed with the coffee vapors. I didn't want to become infected. But here's what I received.

As of March 17, 2014, measures are being taken to reduce the state's adult inmate population when it began on the day of February 10, 2014, which was the three judges' court ordered date. This is an evolving process and the Department of Corrections reserves all rights to modify or amend its plan as circumstances change. But it is said that our state prison population is approximately 143.6% overcapacity which is 502 inmates above the June 30, 2014 benchmark for this prison alone. So only 502 inmates will have to be moved, released or simply transferred to in-state contract facilities. I don't see anyone being released. So that 502 count is being reached simply because inmates have been transferring to a private prison by the name of "California City" which is in Southern California since December 16, 2013. There is housing for Level 2 general population medium and minimum custody inmates there. The current population of the California City institution is approximately 1100 inmates. California City is projected to house 2,381 inmates by the end of June 2014. So in conclusion, 502 inmates will practically be sent there and of course the first benchmark would be achieved before June 30, 2014. That was the best game of hide and seek I've seen. So it's the old move one here, put two there trek.

We now move on to the rest of Very Jerry's plan to ease the overcrowding act in the year 2014. Under the prospective credit earning increase for non-violent non-sex second-strike offenders and minimum custody inmates, the state has begun implementing these credits to such inmates starting in February on February 10, 2014. The state is working to complete program changes to have the strategic offender management system in place which will calculate credit earning. This will be the 80% going to 66% and 50% going to 35%. It's a process everyone, so don't take it out on our only help which is the fly himself. The state has created an interim process for recalculating release dates. They are identifying eligible inmates based on criteria and have created a tracking system for these eligible inmates. If I can remember correctly while breaking down the message decoder to decode the buzz on the fly, I gather that the state has established a system to manually calculate the application of milestone credits when nonviolent second-strike inmates have completed rehabilitative programs that are milestone credit earning. Also, the state is developing notifications to advise inmates in the field of this change. These notifications are being prepared for distribution and application with supposedly respect, according to Jerry, to two-for-one credit earning for minimum custody inmates. The state is evaluating its population reduction tool in light of fire camp participation rates and will report on this measure in future reports.

So my fellow Mendonites and all others who are focused on our loved ones being released from the whale's belly, it wouldn't hurt to pray, and continue to stand, and that's with patience. I'm sure you can do that. I mean look at me, I squeezed the last breath out of my fly. Although he died trying to be that one ear on the wall in those lawsuits for all of us. So he is one of the close-knit family of readers of the AVA.

So please altogether let's give a moment of silence for Buzz. Thank you, Buzz. Also we should be very happy to know that he left two young ones behind who have been trained and equipped with C5 oxygen gas masks and Wolf ticket wetsuits that repel any of Jerry's radioactive products. As I sign off, please know that I'm on the job as well and fanning the flames of discontent in Jerry's world by lifting your awareness, a total expression of my love to them for you all. If there are any questions send them to me at:

Mr. T.R. Taylor, AP0797, Sierra Yard 6006 Low,

PO Box 2400, Susanville, CA 96127.

PS. I have also heard many from Mendocino County will be on post-release community supervision upon release — that means probation, not parole.

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Reggae on the River

Maybe the local newspapers and community radio news departments could ask the Mateel why they never made the attachments available to the public concerning "Reggae on the River" 2013? It took a public record act request to obtain these documents along with others from California Department of Fish & Wildlife concerning violations, e.g. "Reggae on the River.” And again, who's best interest and benefit does "Reggae on the River" represent, the River? It would seem the River is the last thing the Mateel wants to help and defend or spend money to protect. They would rather think about the satisfaction and comfort of their paid festival entertainers/paid guests, campers and festival attendees first, than think about the harm and degrading effects "Reggae on the River" is creating "On the River.” For an area that thinks its helping to protect the natural environment from degrading effects of human activities, I look at this as a prime example; do as I say, not as I do! I am writing all of you, because maybe the Mateel Board will answer your questions, because they never reply to me.

Thank you,

Ed Voice


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I like Todd's writing. It is genuine, clear headed and articulate. It speaks from the heart. That is the way I read it.

Sean Wills


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Dear Editor and Friends,

Join us April 26 and 27th from 10am to 4pm for the annual Anderson Valley Wildflower Show at June Hall at the Boonville Fairgrounds. You will see samples of wildflowers, grasses, trees and plants that are native to Mendocino County and that have survived our drought conditions. Admission is free!

Many wildflowers are collected and identified; plants and books are for sale; a raffle helps fund scholarships to local high school students; and the tea-room offers good food.

Contact Robyn Harper for further information, 895-2609.

Susan Hopkins, publicity chairperson, Anderson Valley Unity Club-Garden Section


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Dear Editor,

In response to Todd Walton’s recent piece:

It’s not just those of you in far Northern California who feel profoundly alienated when perusing a copy of the New Yorker. Many New Yorkers do, too.

The streets here are teeming with tension, but the papers claiming to cover the action are so far removed from it that they read like science fiction. It’s still an immigrant city, with accents and slang that constantly reinvigorate and reinvent English, but you’d never guess that from the detached New Yorker tone. Nor would you suspect from reading the Times that most New Yorkers live in cramped little apartments and are struggling just to get by.

Which is why we subscribe to the AVA instead.

How can a city of a few thousand have a more exciting newspaper than a city of eight million? Easy: simply by including everyone, and covering conflict rather than pretending it doesn’t exist — or just dismissing it with a clever, ironic twist.

Thanks for the work you’re doing there.

Aaron Cometbus

New York City

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Thank you for your positive review of “Comedy of Terror.” I'm delighted you thought well of my satire. My delight was tempered by a letter in the April 2 edition dismissive of Todd Walton, a writer I respect and admire. We're all entitled to our opinions, but let's label our tastes as subjective to avoid being thought tasteless.


John Fremont,

Fort Bragg

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To the Editor:

KZYX, Mendocino County Public Radio, lost its signal due to a major failure of old equipment for three days from March 31 to April 2. The station's 88.1, 90.7, and 91.5 FM were all down. Nothing but dead air for three whole days.

This catastrophe could have been predicted. Even as KZYX General Manager John Coate was demanding a 10 percent raise in 2013, making him the highest paid General Manager in KZYX's 25-year history, Coate knew that our broadcasting equipment was failing. He knew that better than anybody, because Coate is a self-described techie. He was even on the cover on "Wired" magazine once upon a time.

This dereliction of duty is one of the many good reasons I filed my FCC complaint earlier this year when the station sought the renewal of its licenses. Having a signal that’s down for three whole days, as we did at KZYX this week, tells me one thing — KZYX does not deserve to have its license renewed under Coate.

This dereliction of duty almost rises to criminally negligent behavior. Why? Because KZYX serves the vital function of being the Emergency Broadcast System in times of emergency. If an earthquake had hit during those three days when KZYX’s signal was down, as it did in did in the cities of Brea and La Habra, southeast of Los Angeles, shortly after 9 p.m. on Friday — a magnitude 5.1 earthquake — KZYX would have silent. Again, nothing but dead air.

This is unacceptable. This is not cool. The people of Mendocino County deserve better.

John Sakowicz


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There are two or three acceptable candidates for president in 2016. One of them, Bernie Sanders, has indicated he would be willing to run. Although I liked Ralph Nader, Sanders would be a much better candidate, probably the best since Norman Thomas.

A smart political organizer could come up with several million voters who would be interested in a Sanders run. There is already one supporter in the Willits area! (Myself.) How much interest can be found in Anderson Valley?

Ralph Bostrom


PS. Ask the Editor, Number 12098: Oh wise one, what is meant by the expression "a dog's breakfast"?

Ed Reply: A dog's breakfast, my son, translates from the Brit as "total mess," as in, perhaps, "The AVA office is a dog's breakfast of a space."

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Dear County Road Commissioner,

We truly appreciate all the trees lining the sides of the roads in Mendocino County! The trees buffering the sides are really important to us, and we love how they arch gracefully over the roads in many places. We appreciate the trees along the sides of the road on Philo-Greenwood Rd that hide the lack of trees 20 feet or so away under the high wires in certain stretches.

It is terribly disappointing the way the trees have been butchered on the East side of Signal Ridge where it runs into Philo-Greenwood! Five or ten years ago the little oaks there were so lovely, and you could not even tell that there was a vineyard in there — over the years "you" (county road crews or their hires), or the phone co or PG&E have systematically done extremely poor pruning jobs on them so that the trees got into such bad shape they had to be removed! And the latest “pruning” job done there makes some of us very upset every time we see it — which is often, since we live a few miles up Signal Ridge. The poor trees look absolutely tortured! I can see that they do it to expose the wires there- but there are wires hidden in trees all over the county, without the terrible pruning job. It is quite vexing to see the ugliness of that intersection now when it had been so lovely! I hope that whoever hires people to prune trees from now on hires people who know what they are doing! It takes skill to properly prune a tree, and people should be well trained before attempting such work.

This leads me to another point. I recently drove down Anderson Valley Way, and was very unhappy to see the deplorable pruning job done there. Who decided it’s not okay for trees to arch gracefully over the road? Nearly all of them have been shaved on the road side so that now terribly unstable looking lopsided trees line the road. I certainly hope this is not going to be repeated anywhere else! We live in the country, and expect the “country lane” look of healthy, beautiful trees.


Nancy MacLeod


PS. I want to let you know how much I enjoy Todd Walton's articles! They are always very insightful, and I appreciate his introspection, as well as his politics - you could say the politics of sharing. I firmly believe that without sharing there will be no justice, and without justice, we cannot have any real peace. Todd has written thoughtfully and honestly about homelessness, consumerism, greed politics, ecological issues, as well as his own struggles trying to be a creative, caring person living lightly/rightly on the earth. I appreciate him opening his heart to us, and look forward every week to reading his article. I save it for last, to savor, like dessert.

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Dear Editor:

Maybe we should thank Tom Hine, aka TWK, for encouraging in Sunday's (4/6) UDJ community interest in Ukiah’s sign law, set for City Council discussion on April 16.  On the other hand, surely it’s time to respond to his ongoing op-ed ridicule directed against local public agencies.  Let’s acknowledge this interminable TWK invective so often peppered with inaccuracies and outright lies.

Mr. Hine, who hypocritically gets his kicks deriding local government and public school staffs while he’s been on the public payroll for the last twenty years or so, absurdly claims that enforcement of our sign ordinance is “targeting local churches.”  He knows this is a lie and yet, tellingly, Tom Hine could not care less that it’s a lie.

Mr. TWK should know the sad and dubious church sign is likely protected given the ex post facto phrase in our Constitution. Isn’t it one thing to be burdened with a mean spirit ever full of venom and another to spew falsehoods which would win accolades at Orwell’s Ministry of Truth?

Ukiah’s existing sign ordinance already prohibits “flashing, rotating, animated, blinking and moving signs” along with changeable message boards.  The existing rules prohibit any “illuminated sign which exhibits changing light or color effect by blinking or any other such means so as to provide a nonconsistent illumination.”  I am encouraging our Council on April 16 to make this prohibition more explicit and so easier for staff to enforce, given modern technology. (Please check out subject sign style on North State Street near freeway, on Orchard Avenue just south of Perkins, and on 101 freeway in Rohnert Park and Petaluma.)

Yes Ukiah, the more we read Mr. Hine, the more we conclude he appreciates increasing license for assaults on our privacy, safety, and tranquility.  And while we run into plenty who’d tell Hine: “do your *&^%*#% homework for a change,” TWK fans celebrate his hatred of government and law.

Let’s encourage Tom Hine, champion for invasive noise making toys, noncompliance, and distracting, garish, Las Vegas style signage in Ukiah, to attend and speak his mind at our April 16 Council session.  (Note - we haven’t seen Hine attend any Council meetings or volunteer for City service during the last fifteen years.)

Phil Baldwin


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To the editor:

The Redwood Valley County Water District (RVCWD) is not in full compliance with some California Department of Public Health code requirements and their domestic water supply permit. Some of these deficiencies listed in a December 19, 2013 letter from the California Department of Public Health have not been corrected since 2010 by the RVCWD Board or its manager Bill Koehler.

These deficiencies include a coagulant flow alarm that has been nonfunctional since 2012, regular alarm testing, insufficient staffing level, flushing and valve exercise plan since 2010, and an operational plan not submitted since June 30, 2010. In addition, filter surveillance, source water monitoring and source water turbidity monitoring are also not in compliance with state codes. It is alleged that the Department of Public Health deadlines have been repeatedly missed without any action being taken by the RVCWD Board of Directors.

In order to protect the health and safety of water users the RVCWD board should take immediate action to remedy these deficiencies.

It is alleged that the Redwood Valley County Water District board has not ordered the locking of their fire hydrants to prevent water theft from the District. In addition, it is alleged that the Redwood Valley Board has not stopped the practice of serving water to newer homes whose wells have run dry in violation of a moratorium put in place by the Mendocino County Superior Court (CV55595), in a lawsuit filed against the district many years ago.

In a recent action by the Russian River Flood Control District, the RVCW District was allocated 355 acre-feet of water due to the fact that the district has no water right to pump water out of Lake Mendocino at this time. This allotment was for domestic use only and allowed domestic water customers to use 80 gallons a day per person. On March 20, 2014, the board voted to only allow their domestic customers to have 50 gallons per day per person beginning on April 1, 2014 when the RVCWD manager knew full well that the RVCW District was allocated 80 gallons per day by the Flood Control district.

It is time that the RVCW District board takes immediate action to come into compliance with their public health compliance deficiencies and practices which may jeopardize public health and the availability of water and their customers who have a right to said water and pay for it.

They also need to adjust their domestic water use from 50 gallons per day per person to 80 gallons per day per person as provided for in the granting of 355 acre-feet of water from the Russian River Flood Control District.

Ava Peterson

Redwood Valley

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To the Editor:

To the rude mountain biker at Lake Mendocino last Sunday. My horseback riding partner and I were riding down a very narrow steep trail on the east side of the Lake. A trail that we have ridden on every weekend for the last couple of years on horses that are accustomed to trail riding.

A mountain biker came up the trail towards me. I ask him to stop several times. Instead he yelled that it was a shared trail and that if I couldn't control my horse I shouldn't be riding. Without stopping he told me to get off the trail, that he was coming through. This sent my horse backwards up the bank. Had I been down in the trail a few more feet where there is a cliff and a long drop to the Lake we both could have been hurt.

I would like to point out to this cyclist that trail etiquette states that bikers yield to both horses and hikers. Hikers yield to horses. Horses are big and unpredictable so they get the right of way. Look up hiking etiquette on the Internet.

I would like to think this fellow is just ignorant. But I think most likely he only cares about himself and has no respect for his fellow man. I hope that he doesn't get anyone hurt when he rides the trails.

Diane Parker


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To the Editor,

Is it my imagination or does District Attorney Eyster the Shyster look a little bit like the star from the movie deliverance, Ned Beatty? Does Eyster run home and squeal with joy every time he wins a case? After a probation violation hearing last year for having a ropelock from work, someone told me afterwards that it was Eyster himself on the other side trying to send me up the river. I would have been a lot more nervous had I known it was him at the time. But since I usually go to Ten Mile Court on the coast when I get in trouble, I thought it was just some heavyset Deputy DA. Also, I had "Fireball Finch" defending me and I didn't know his reputation either or I would have been a nervous wreck. Oh well. Like my sex therapist says, ignorance is bliss!

Anyway, things turned out okay that time. Judge Henderson must have grown up in the area or had been around long enough to know what a ropelock was. I keep hearing about the big article you guys did on me back in May or June of 2013 and I would like to read it for myself. That's why I keep bugging you guys about it. Can you please send me a back issue?

Thanks, Greg Barnett



  1. mark April 11, 2014

    Re: Dead air on KZYX

    Most of the Pacifica network stations can’t afford to properly maintain or replace their transmitters either.

    It app0ears a plan is afoot to sell one of them and cannibalize it to temporarily maintain the others,most of which have low and declining listnership and will eventually go bankrupt anyway..

  2. Larry Vance April 12, 2014

    So, what’s wrong with that ? They have a greatly declining audience because they spout off the same
    old, same old for the past 60 years and those very valuable frequencies could be put to much better use.
    Why is valuable newsprint being wasted to discuss the inevitable demise of the current version of the blacksmith industry ?

  3. mark April 14, 2014

    Dead Air on KZYX

    The Pacifica faction wanting to cannibalize their New York station to (temporarily) keep the other deficit-running statins afloat seems to be led by local KPFA cliquists.

    Summer Reese, the recently purged Executive Director now fighting her purging by sitting in at the Pacifica offices in Berkeley, apparently would have been an obstacle to this plan, so Pacifica violated their own guidelines, and a written employment contract, to purge her less than two months after HIRING her!!

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