- Clearing 101
- FB Fire
- Alex Osorio
- Jeep Crash
- Wildflower Show
- Animal Nuts
- Newspaper Errors
- Little Dog
- Quiz Night
- 1957 Rains
- Mendo Libertarians
- Dockins Wanted
- Mummy Case
- DA Praise
- Cannibals Disband
- Boontling Classic
- Ritdet Convicted
- ADA Lawsuit
- Yesterday's Catch
- Flattened Poles
- Mexican Checkpoint
- Moving Women
- Berkeley Confrontations
- Heroin Overdoses
- Compost Workshop
- PG&E Taxes
- PG&E Rates
- Ceremonial Women
- Stehrred Up
- SB 808
- Memorial Day
- July 4
CALTRANS HIGHWAY 101 LEGGETT SLIDE REPORT
CAUTIOUS OPTIMISM —Wednesday afternoon status report from Caltrans on the slide-gobbled section of Highway 101 just north of Leggett...
US101 CLOSURE UPDATE (4/26, 4:45 pm): “Caltrans contractors have resumed work after slide activity closed the highway again Tuesday night. The slide has been sporadically active throughout the day, with work being suspended during periods of increased slide activity. We’re cautiously optimistic that we may be able to restore one-way traffic by this weekend.”
Caltrans Facebook page posts regarding the Leggett re-slide:
“Oh wow. Yea we had to take Mina Road thru the Reservation to get back from the big little hill. That road had me doing the ridgline drift. That detour aint no joke! — Heidi Capone
I know you guys worked your butts off to get the road open to one lane, my husband got to make one run through there after you did, but I think maybe you need a different game plan than just hauling off over 100 dump truck loads and putting up some wire and concrete barriers. Fortunately no one has been injured or killed. God Bless you All and Stay Safe. — Cindy Shea
BIG FIRE IN DOWNTOWN FORT BRAGG WEDNESDAY
A fast-spreading fire at 542 Main Street in Fort Bragg started early Wednesday afternoon and destroyed most of a building housing artists galleries and studios, a woodshop, and other businesses behind the Café Del Mar restaurant on Main Street.
Firefighters worked for more than an hour before entering the building after tearing off siding. They then set up hoses on top of the Café Del Mar Restaurant in front. The restaurant appeared to suffer the least damage and most of the damage was said to be to the second story of the building behind it which may have been where the fire started. No cause has been determined so far.
NO DETAILS YET but a young Fort Bragg man named Alex Osorio was killed Wednesday in an accident.
FORT BRAGG PAIR INJURED in Highway collision.
On April 25, 2017 at about 1:40 PM, Patricia Berenice, 22, of Fort Bragg, was driving her 2015 Jeep southbound on Highway 1 just south of Simpson Road at approximately 70 mph. Stacey Anderson, 39, of Fort Bragg, was driving her 2013 Toyota northbound on Highway 1 just south of Simpson Road at approximately 40 mph. Berenice began to drive through the slight left-hand curve in the roadway while at the same time starting down a downhill portion of the roadway when she lost control of her Jeep. Berenice lost control of the Jeep due to excessive speed for the conditions. The rear tires of the Jeep began to slide to the right and the Jeep began rotating in a counterclockwise direction. This caused the Jeep to proceed in a south easterly direction and cross the solid double yellow line. The Jeep proceeded into the northbound lane and collided into the rear portion of Anderson's Toyota. The Jeep glanced off the Toyota and continued in a south easterly direction onto the east dirt/grass shoulder. The Jeep then turned back to the right and began rotating in a clockwise direction with its rear tires sliding to the left. The Jeep proceeded back into the roadway of Highway 1 while sliding sideways until it overturned towards its left. Jeep overturned within the roadway of Highway 1 and came to rest on its roof. Berenice exited the vehicle on her own and remained on scene. Berenice’s passenger, Julian Carrilo-Palomar, 19, of Fort Bragg, remained trapped within the Jeep until fire personnel arrived and freed him. Berenice suffered minor injuries and Carrilo-Palomar suffered major injuries. Both parties in the Jeep were transported from the scene by medical personnel for treatment of their injuries. Alcohol or drugs was not considered to be a factor in the coalition. All three parties involved were wearing their seatbelts.
The over abundant rains gave us a beautiful sampling of our spring flowers.
We would like to thank everyone who made the 2017, Wildflower Show such a success. The Sanhedrin Chapter of the California Native Plant Society returned this year and had books and posters to offer and was kept busy with many visitors questions. New to the show was Larner’s Seeds, offering a wide variety of native wild flower seeds. There was also an Edible Native Plant table manned by Susan Newstead with recipes, samples, and lots of information about foraging.
Thank you to Anderson Valley High School’s instructors Nat Corey-Moran and Nadia Berrigan whose students produced stunning photos on display at the show. The Garden Section Club voted on the pictures and the top three winners received $50 each.
An invasive plant table with specimens, pictures and information regarding the damage these plants cause to native species provided a necessary counterpoint.
Another component for the show was a Lyme disease exhibit presented by Sue Davies. Many brochures and even live ticks (in a covered jar), were available offering extensive information about preventive measures and dangers associated with Lyme.
This year we also added a speaker program that presented a variety of talks on a wide range of subjects. We thank Mary Pat Palmer for her presentation on medicine making and plant preservation; Jade Paget-Seekins for her talk on bees and plant identification, Kate Marionchild for lessons on the Oak Woodlands, Lee Siri for information on butterflies and Linda MacElwee on replacing invasive plants in our gardens with natives.
This year we had a bounty of raffle prizes and we wish to thank the following for their generous donations: Sanhedrin Chapter of CNPS, The Puzzle People, Pot Shop, North Star Nursery, Gowans Oak Tree, Farmhouse Mercantile, Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, Goodness Grows, Fiddlers Green, Fish Rock Farm Girls, The Rock Stop, Little River Inn, Larner Seeds, Cal Flora, Anne Bennet/Aaron Weintraub, and Tom Dow/Gina Marie Lindsey. In addition to these donations our club members provided many more raffle gifts.
A big thank you to Shirley Hulbert, and company for the delicious food served in the tea room.
We wish to thank the following people who helped our club members with collections, identification, the raffle, plant donations, set-up or cleanup:, Linda MacElwee, Jade Paget-Seekins, Sheryl Green, Lynn Halpern, Ken Montgomery, Wally Hopkins, Hans Hickenlooper, Kristy Hotchkiss, Scott Hulbert, Sarah McCarter, Taunia Green, Rick Bonner, Kathy Bailey, Melanie Holloway, Tom Shaver, Tone Taylor, and Pat and Michael Smith.
Our wildflower collectors this year benefited again from updated and a much improved collection route book courtesy of our own Nancy Wood. The AV Museum provided Grandma Stubblefield’s story about the special rose we have populating our valley.
Thank you to Jody and the Fairgrounds staff for all their help. Thanks to Robert Rosen, the Anderson Valley Brewery and the AV Methodist Church for allowing us to place our banners, advertising our event, on their respective fences.
We are extending an invitation to community members to join us in next year’s wild flower adventure. We would love additional collectors, and especially those interested in identifying plants. Contributors with new ideas can only help to improve this community event. We want more of our community members to be an integral part and help make this show even better. Interested? Please contact Robyn Harper at 895-2609.
Anderson Valley Unity Club Garden Section
A SMALL CLAQUE of animal nuts continues to bombard the County Animal Shelter with Public Record Act requests, the latest one for 400 pages of scattershot info, which means Shelter staff has to take time away from caring for the animals to come up with...what? The demands on Shelter time has forced Shelter staff into the equivalent of answering serial crank calls.
THE NO KILL people filing these harassing requests seem to believe that the County's No Kill Shelter has a warehouse hidden somewhere with thousands of dead dogs and cats in it. Honoring what are essentially frivolous requests should have been stopped after the first one.
IN OUR print edition of April 26th there is an unkind reference to Paul Katzeff of Thanksgiving Coffee in a story by Rex Gressett. I had edited it out of our on-line version of the story and do not know how it appeared in our print edition. I am truly sorry for the error.
AND, while we're in full contrition mode, apologies to Paul McCarthy for failing to acknowledge his photographs of Tuesday's fatal accident on Highway 128.
I'M NOT MAKING excuses for editorial inattention, but in the pure volume of the daily info-deluge, added to poor computer skills, I'm continually surprised we don't make more mistakes.
HERE'S how it works here. I see everything that goes up on our website and into our print edition. I forward all the copy to my colleague, The Major, who formats and posts it and prepares some of it for print.
EVERY HECTIC MONDAY, much of the material posted during the week, plus print-only items and stories, most of the them Boonville-specific, are electronically transmitted to our ace paste-up person, Renee Wyant of Boonville. Paste-up used to be done by hand, now it's done by computer.
EVERY MONDAY, Renee assembles the print AVA for re-transmission to Healdsburg Printing. But before Renee dispatches the paper, she hurls it back through the ethers for our final go-over before she sends it off to print. The computer-transmitted AVA has got to get to Healdsburg by 8am Wednesday morning.
I'M AT THE PRINTER'S back door by 9am to pick up the bundles of papers and drive them back to Boonville where a pair of senior citizens, The Major and David Severn, label and package the paper for mailing to our far-flung readership. I deliver the Anderson Valley while Mr. Severn delivers to Ukiah and Redwood Valley
THE AVA's the only print paper, apart from the journalo-wreckage of the Press Democrat, that has sales outlets and subscribers in every area of Mendocino County.
PRINT IS DYING. This enterprise, though doomed, lumbers on. There are older people who read only print-print, but they are shuffling off and are not being replaced by young people, most of whom, it seems get their information in bursts of sentence fragments routed through Kim Kardashian.
THE COPY we get varies in intelligibility. Professional writers send us "clean copy," meaning all we have to do is plug it in. Other writers need editorial assistance, which is my job.
I GIVE MYSELF a C most weeks, occasionally a B, rarely an A. Every Wednesday, late afternoon, after the mailing and all the deliveries, I read the hard copy — the paper-paper — mentally wincing at my own prose blunders and the mechanical errors I should have caught in the prose of other contributors. Computerized spelling and grammar services are not helpful. In fact, they're just two more obstacles to clarity, in my experience.
A LOT can go wrong in the weekly uphill roll of the big rock. This week, the issue of April 26, things went wronger than usual, but in this business, there's little time for regrets as next week begins when last week ends.
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “We got Dude Fest coming up Saturday, thousands of young people come to town to drink beer at the Boonville Fairgrounds. Last year, whenever a pretty girl walked by, the pit bulls next door would act like complete fools, rolling around in the dirt and saying stuff like, ‘Hey, baby! How about a smooch? I'm not so bad, heh?’ Me? I say, ‘Welcome to the Anderson Valley, ladies. Enjoy your stay. Say, you wouldn't have an extra hooch to go with my cooch, would you?’ ”
THE QUIZ IS ON! because tomorrow, it’s April 27th, the fourth Thursday of the month… 7pm prompt at Lauren’s Restaurant in Boonville. Hope to see you there,
Steve Sparks/The Quiz Master
by Bob Dempel
The Savings Bank of Mendocino County published Rainfall amounts on a small card several years ago. I look at this card often due to a long rainy winter this year. The total amounts are high but I cannot remember having so much rain so late in the year. This becomes a problem for grape growers. The vines are ready to bud out, but the soils are cold and wet. The growing season may be delayed.
Growers always think of harvest. That is the payday for an entire year’s work. I have lived thru 47 harvests. The one I remember was the year of 1957. Rain started on the 17th of September. Just a small amount at first. Harvest had not started so I did not put a large amount of concern to it. Then the rain continued. As the days got shorter the soils did not dry out. Back in 1957 we still picked in boxes and dumped them directly into a gondolas on the back of a truck driven down an alleyway in the vineyard.
The ranch truck was a 1947 Dodge. I loved that truck. I could put 6 tons of grapes on it and drive right down Highway 101 from Hopland to Asti. The grape tank was hinged so when one side was lifted at the crush hopper most if not all of the grapes would just slide out.
Towards the end of September we managed to get one truckload of grapes picked all day in light rain. I parked the truck in the barn overnight. The next morning in still more rain I carefully drove down to Asti to deliver the load of grapes. I think that many growers did exactly what I did but finally we got unloaded.
The roads were wet and I drove slowly. Old 101 ran right thru Cloverdale. Just south of town the road ran down a small incline. I looked and saw a line of vehicles stopped. I brought my little flatbed to a stop. And then bang. I was hit from the back. Pushed into the car in front of me, that hit another vehicle. I was hit so hard it broke the bed loose from the frame and I could not open the doors. I had to crawl out of the driver’s side window.
I was rear ended by a big empty lumber truck and trailer. He came over the incline and just slid right into me. My back and neck hurt. I was wet from the rain. And my truck was broken. How were we going to get the rest of the grapes to the winery?
The truck was one problem. In 1957 continuing rain was another problem. We had to pick the rest of the crop in boxes, load the boxes onto a sled pulled by our international TD6 tractor. Then we dumped the grapes by hand into a friend’s truck. We picked around rain storms and finally finished in late October.
Thank god for the old TD6 tractor.
Hump Day Rant
I'm getting pretty tired of all these libertarians around me, especially now that our Grand Cheeto is flubbing his way through the presidency. I see posts whining about militant liberalism not letting Ann Coulter speak at Berkeley. Who gives a rat’s ass? All these sideshows are bullshit anyways. Focus on the real issues: reinstating Glass-Steagall, unlocking Wall Street from Main Street, real immigration and healthcare reform. And the biggest elephant in the room, next to Il Douche himself: the Federal deficit. I used to get earfuls from all these libertarian nuts about how the federal deficit is going to bring us, our children and grandchildren to our knees. Now what is #45 doing? Building a stupid wall and reducing corporate taxes to 15%. What about that federal deficit now? Not a peep from those steadfast libertarians. Face it libertarians, your idealistic view of the world is NEVER going to be a realistic form of governance. You point out all of the failures of communism and socialism (e.g., Venezuela), but Libertarianism is nothing short of anarchy. It's a pipe dream in a vacuum of American idealism and imperialism surrounded by unlimited automatic weapons (nevermind that the Natives were here first)! And look at what our Mendoland libertarian mindset on private property rights combined with burnt-out hippy indifference has gotten us: every yahoo and their cousin coming here to grow dope. Yee-haw!
Kirk Vodopals, Navarro
WARRANT WEDNESDAY RETURNS
Elizabeth Dockins is Wanted for PC 487(A)-GRAND THEFT
Bail - NO BAIL
Age: 28 years old
Height: 5' 5"
Weight: 210 lbs
If you recognize this individual or have information which could lead to their arrest, please contact the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office at (707) 463-4086.
(Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office)
CAREGIVER PLEADS NO CONTEST TO ELDER ABUSE IN FORT BRAGG 'MUMMY' CASE
by Glenda Anderson
A former caregiver who lived in an apartment with the decaying remains of her client for at least a month before the grisly scene was discovered has pleaded no contest to felony elder abuse.
Lori Diane Fiorentino, 56, faces a maximum of four years in prison when she’s sentenced May 11, according to the settlement agreement, filed Monday in Mendocino County Superior Court. She is, however, eligible for probation in lieu of prison time.
The mummified body of Arlene Potts, 66, was found by Fort Bragg Police at the Duncan Place apartment complex Dec. 14 following a request by the apartment manager for a welfare check, according to testimony at Fiorentino’s preliminary hearing in January.
Potts’ emaciated body, clad in nothing but five layers of feces-encrusted diapers, was on a couch, hidden by a wall of shopping carts and debris, according to court testimony. She could have been dead for six months or more before her body was found.
A former tenant of the Duncan Place senior apartment complex told police the chronic smell in the hallway outside Potts’ door changed last summer from acrid urine to something rotten. She likened it to the stench of a dead whale on a beach.
An autopsy found severe muscle atrophy, emaciation and ulcerated lesions on Potts’ body, but was inconclusive on cause of death, limiting the charging opportunities, Deputy District Attorney Kevin Davenport conceded during the preliminary hearing.
Had there been a more conclusive death determination, Fiorentino might have been charged with an enhancement — that the abuse caused the death — and up to five years could have been added to her sentence.
The case raised questions about elder care in the county and how something so appalling could go undetected for so long.
Tenants of the apartment complex reported they’d repeatedly complained to its manager about the smell. At least one reported her concerns about Potts’ health to the county’s Adult Protective Services months before the body was found.
The manager had not entered the apartment in 11 months. It’s unclear whether Adult Protective Services ever went to the apartment.
The agency successfully fought a request by Fiorentino’s public defender, Frank McGowan, for her case documents, and would not divulge to the media whether Potts ever had been a client.
But according to court transcripts, the agency was contacted by the hospital in Fort Bragg in December 2013 about Potts, who had suffered a major hip injury but refused treatment and refused to go to a nursing home.
A physician who examined Potts suspected she suffered from chronic schizophrenia, but no one attempted to place her under a conservatorship or have her held for further psychiatric evaluation, according to court documents.
Instead, Fiorentino was hired to assist Potts at home through the county’s In-Home Supportive Services. The county reportedly checked on Potts during the first several months but apparently not afterward.
Elder advocates say the various systems responsible for providing or overseeing care for the elderly are rife with problems and in need of improvement. An estimated 1 in 10 Americans over the age of 60 has experienced some type of elder abuse, according to the federal Administration on Aging, an agency of the Department of Health and Human Services.
In court, McGowan blamed the county agencies and the hospital for failing Potts. He also said Fiorentino did the best she could given the circumstances.
The “defendant asserts she provided all the care the alleged victim would allow,” McGowan wrote in a court filing seeking Adult Protective Services records.
The courts, he wrote, have held that “competent persons generally are permitted to refuse medical treatment, even at the risk of death.”
(The Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
MIKE GENIELLA WRITES: Maybe it's just me. After all I am the public spokesman for Mendocino County District Attorney David Eyster. Yet the notion that Sonoma County DA Jill Ravitch merits a news story in The Press Democrat about her possible return to the courtroom - only her second since taking office in 2011 and even with that as a 'co-counsel' - boggles my mind. Eyster is a regular in the courtrooms. He tries cases, and wins convictions in most of them including a first-degree murder conviction in 2012. Besides overseeing what in reality is the largest law firm in Mendocino County, Eyster is largely responsible for all marijuana prosecution cases, no small task in the heart of California's dope-growing region. So where's that story? Just asking.
PS. Mendocino County District Attorney Dave Eyster [also] prosecuted this case* but as usual his critical role in the outcome was not mentioned in The Press Democrat. DA Eyster is one of the few district attorney's who carries a full case load, appears in court regularly and actively engages in trial work.
* * *
*Eugene Peterson Jr. plead no contest to using a firearm in a crime, making criminal threats against the victims stemming from the below incident back in 2015. Peterson now faces up to 25 years in prison.
ATTEMPTED MURDER IN POTTER VALLEY
On February 10, 2015 at 5:55 PM Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies were dispatched to the 17000 block of Van Arsdale Road in Potter Valley, in regards to a dangerous situation. The Sheriff's Office Dispatch Center received a call from a 56 year old male resident of Potter Valley [Wes Fairbairn] who advised when he came home he found a suspect holding his 55 year old wife [Jan Fairbairn] at gunpoint inside the couple’s residence. The husband advised the dispatcher he was going back to the residence and disconnected the phone. Approximately 15 minutes later the Sheriff's Office Dispatch Center received a call from the wife advising the suspect was being detained at the residence by the husband. Deputies arrived minutes later and took the suspect, Eugene Peterson Jr., 32, into custody without further incident. Deputies learned the wife came home just after 5:00 PM and observed Peterson inside her residence. When the wife arrived at the residence’s door she didn't recognize Peterson and thought he was someone needing help since the residence was located in a rural area. The wife contacted Peterson as she entered the residence and he became somewhat confrontational. The wife thought she might be able to talk with Peterson and get him to leave but the longer she talked to him the more aggressive he became. The wife advised she had to feed her animals in an attempt to remove herself from the situation. Peterson advised she could feed the animals but he was going to accompany her and showed her a handgun tucked inside his pants. After the feeding was completed, Peterson became demanding telling the victim to fix him food. About this time, the wife’s husband came home resulting in Peterson confronted the husband in the driveway of the residence telling him he had to leave while brandishing the handgun. The husband told his wife to run but she did not as she was afraid what may happen if she ran away. The husband left the residence to get cellular service to call 911 and then returned to the residence. When Peterson saw the husband return to the residence he again confronted him telling him that he had to leave. During this time Peterson from several hundred feet away discharged several rounds from the handgun in the husband’s direction. While Peterson was shooting at the husband, the wife attempted to flee the residence but Peterson chased her and caught her inside the residence’s carport. Peterson began dragging the wife back into the residence which resulted in her struggling for control of the handgun. During the struggle, the husband tackled Peterson ultimately leading to him being disarmed. Peterson was then physically restrained until Deputies arrived shortly thereafter and took him into custody. Peterson was booked into the Mendocino County Jail on the listed charges where he was to be held in lieu of $250,000 bail.
(Sheriff’s Original Press Release)
MARCH 6, 2017 — CANNIBALS DISBAND: Sad news from Ukiah. The Cannibal Club, which for nearly 45 years drew great, loud crowds of men primed for sharing a drink and a big lunch, talking politics and telling jokes inappropriate to most other venues, has abruptly shut down.
Letters to members advise that declining participation and an inability to meet financial obligations forced “an immediate suspension of Cannibal Club operations.”
At its peak, 650 men from throughout Mendocino County and the North Coast paid dues entitling them to meet once a month for a leisurely, just-because buffet lunch and bull-fest of the Cannibal Club, a predecessor of Sonoma County’s Fountain Grove Business Club.
My former PD colleague Mike Geniella wrote in 1995 that founder Carrol Ornbaun was inspired by the men who’d gather at Hopland’s Pomo Inn for chef Vince Lotti’s special of seasoned steak served raw in an open-face sandwich.
For years before his death in 2006, Ornbaun would stand before the monthly gathering at the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds in Ukiah and welcome the men to “the greatest club anywhere.” Up would go an affirming roar.
(Chris Smith, The Santa Rosa Press Democrat)
THE 35TH ANNUAL BOONTLING CLASSIC 5K Footrace is right around the corner — just a few days away on Sunday, May 7th at 10am. It is shaping up to be a terrific event. Many runners of all ages have already entered, the 2017 t-shirts are fabulous, and there are more raffle prizes than ever before! So, if you are looking for fast competition, a good spring jog, or just an enjoyable walking event with friends, the Boontling Classic is for you. Once again, the Day of the Child celebration after the race promises to be loads of fun for the entire family. For more information or registration forms contact race director Flick McDonald at (707) 621-2701, email@example.com
HUMAN TRAFFICKING CONVICTION
Ukiah restaurant owners…
Yaowapha Ritdet, a Ukiah, California, restaurateur, was sentenced today to 24 months in prison for corruptly endeavoring to obstruct the internal revenue laws and harboring illegal aliens for profit, announced U.S. Attorney Brian J. Stretch, Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Special Agent in Charge Ryan Spradlin, and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Special Agent in Charge Michael T. Batdorf. The sentence was handed down by the Honorable Judge Edward M. Chen, U.S. District Judge, following the entry of a plea agreement in August 2016 in which Ritdet admitted committing the crimes.
According to her plea agreement, Ritdet, 56, of Ukiah, admitted she hired Thai nationals who were illegally present in the United States to work at her restaurants, Ruen Tong Thai Cuisine and Walter Café, both located in Ukiah. Ritdet underpaid these employees and instructed them not to speak to anyone about their immigration status. Ritdet also paid her employees in cash and did not pay employment taxes on the cash wages. Ritdet also admitted she willfully filed false individual income tax returns for 2007 through 2011 that underreported the gross receipts, sales, and income received from her two restaurants. In addition, Ritdet acknowledged she failed to report she had a financial interest in an account at a Thai bank.
On August 2, 2016, Ritdet was charged in a superseding information with one count of corrupt endeavor to impede and impair the lawful administration of the internal revenue laws, in violation of 26 U.S.C. § 7212(a), and one count of harboring illegal aliens for private financial gain, in violation of 8 U.S.C. § § 1324(a)(1)(A)(iii), and (B)(i). She pleaded guilty to both counts on August 17, 2016.
In addition to the 24-month prison term and restitution, Judge Chen ordered Ritdet to pay more than $560,000 in restitution— $567,755.65 to be paid to the IRS and $70,768.65 to be paid to the employees whose wages she underpaid. Further, Judge Chen ordered Ritdet to serve three years of supervised release.
Assistant U.S. Attorney José A. Olivera and Trial Attorney Charles O’Reilly of the Tax Division are prosecuting the case. U.S. Attorney Stretch and Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Goldberg thanked the prosecutors as well as special agents of IRS–Criminal Investigation; Homeland Security Investigations, who conducted the investigation; and the U.S. Department of Labor, Wage and Hour Division, who identified the underpayment of wages and overtime.
LATEST ADA LAWSUIT NAMES COUNCILWOMAN’S BUSINESS
CATCH OF THE DAY, April 26, 2017
JEREMY AUMAN, Laytonville/Willits. Under influence, paraphernalia, probation revocation.
ZACHARIAH BARBER, Ukiah. Mandatory supervision sentencing.
CLAYTON BRITTON, Covelo. Probation revocation.
ALEX BROSTOWICZ, Fort Bragg. Getting credit with someone else’s ID.
MARK CONTRERAS, Ukiah. Domestic battery.
SHANNON COSMAN, Willits. Probation revocation.
JESSICA DIAZ, Ukiah. DUI-drugs, petty theft, controlled substance, paraphernalia.
REGINA GIBBS, Ukiah. Probation revocation.
RAYMOND JONES, Ukiah. Paraphernalia, receiving stolen property, suspended license, failure to appear, probation revocation.
STEVEN LAMUN, Talmage. Protective order violation.
STEVEN LUNA, Covelo. Interfering with business.
ARLIE ORTIZ, Ukiah. Failure to appear.
JOSE RODRIGUEZ, Redwood Valley. Community Supervision violation.
ELIA VANWORMER, Fort Bragg. Domestic battery, false imprisonment, under influence, probation revocation.
IT MAY BE THAT FLATTENING at the Poles of the earth, which always seemed to my childhood's imagination to have been caused by the finger and thumb of the Creator, when He held up this little planet before He set it spinning, has a greater influence on climate than we have yet ascribed to them. — Conan Doyle
by Paul Modic
I still don't know why I blew through that checkpoint outside Mazatlan on my last drive North up through Mexico even though the police went out in the middle of the road with his machine gun motioning me to stop. I exited onto the autopista (superhighway) and sure enough soon noticed flashing red and blue lights in my rear view mirror. I found the film can with the last half joint in it, thought about throwing it out the window, then stashed it into my toiletries bag instead of the usual secure spot deep within a smattering of coffee grounds and banana peels in a rotten milk box in my litter bag on the floor of the passenger seat.
I played dumb gringo (you're probably thinking now that's easy) as they went through my stuff and I soon saw the film can in one of the policeman's hand and another had found the Mexican match box with the joint residue inside.
"Marijuana!" the English-speaking cop said triumphantly with a big smile. "You're in big trouble now!" He took out his handcuffs while I staggered a little within, then began to negotiate.
"Can't I pay a fine?" I asked.
"Here?" the cop asked. He handed me back my drivers license. "How much you got?"
I opened my wallet and offered 200$USD.
"Look! $200 he has!" the policeman said with a laugh. "How about three?"
I looked in my wallet and found two 50s to go along with the two Franklins. "Oh, one for each?" I said, referring to the other two cops who'd arrived in the second vehicle.
"Yeah," said the cop.
I paid the $300 just as one of the cops discovered my new, unused tennis shoes. "Can I buy these from you?" he asked.
I was ready to give him the damn shoes when a federal highway patrolman stopped by to see what was up with these state cops out on the autopista. Just before the fed rolled up in his black and white one state cop handed me back the film can and I considered tossing it immediately in the weeds but stashed it back in the car.
I told the cop $20 for the shoes and we completed the transaction before the eyes of the Federale. I took the 200 pesos, looked at all four cops sandwiching me in, and asked if I could go. I pulled out still thinking I should ditch the joint out the window, then at the rest stop with the Federale parked nearby I thought about dumping it in the trash. Instead I took off, still feeling a little shocked and stopped under an autopista overpass. I re-rolled the joint, burned it up, and then rolled down the highway. I was finally clean in Mexico and vowed to get my life together.
WOMEN ON THE MOVE
In the context of the normalization of Trump’s tyrannical agenda as business as usual, two socially engaged artists and a young journalist have devised a retort to quell the escalating inertia. Can three women and a truck activate public resistance?
WHY ARE FAR-RIGHT SPEAKERS FLOCKING TO LIBERAL BERKELEY?
Ann Coulter Cancels Speech (Again) – But Battle For Berkeley's Political Soul Rages On
As Coulter canceled a contentious appearance and in the wake of protests over Milo Yiannopoulos, the far right is using ‘free speech’ as a rallying cry
by Julie Carrie Wong & Sam Levin
(San Francisco) Ann Coulter has canceled a speech that had been planned for Thursday on the University of California’s Berkeley campus after initially claiming she would defy the administration’s request that she hold her event a week later at a secure venue.
“There will be no speech,” the rightwing commentator told Reuters in an email, blaming her reversal on conservative groups that had originally said they would sponsor her talk but apparently withdrew their backing.
“I looked over my shoulder and my allies had joined the other team,” she added.
The cancellation will come as a relief to university officials who had feared Coulter’s determination to appear on campus at a time and place of her choosing would result in violent confrontations.
But for a city that just two weeks ago saw violent clashes between attendees of a rally that included white supremacists, Trump loyalists and militia members and counter-protesting anti-fascists, the temporary deescalation of tensions is likely temporary.
The college town so deeply liberal that it is referred to as “the people’s republic of Berkeley” is now a favored destination for the far right, resulting in a number of violent encounters on the city’s streets and the University of California’s flagship campus.
The table was set for the Coulter controversy in early February, when the Berkeley College Republicans hosted a speech by former Breitbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos. Thousands of students turned out to protest against the rightwing provocateur, and the speech was cancelled after a group of masked protesters shot fireworks, threw rocks and set fires around the venue.
The cancellation, which the university said was due to safety concerns and not Yiannopoulos’s political views, nevertheless drew cries of outrage over the alleged suppression of free speech on a college campus. Donald Trump tweeted about the affair, including a veiled threat that the public university could lose federal funds.
Casting the controversy over Yiannopolous as one of freedom of speech has been a public relations coup for the right.
“It has an almost irresistible propagandistic value,” said Larry Rosenthal, the chair of the UC Berkeley Center for Right-Wing Studies, by providing the right an opportunity to “talk about the hypocrisy of liberals with respect to free speech”.
Indeed, the Berkeley College Republicans have made the most out of the perceived hypocrisy of the university, which was the birthplace of the campus free speech movement in 1964. The group’s Facebook page features a video about the speech cancellations and protests set to the mournful strains of the Moonlight Sonata, with the caption, “Berkeley Hates Free Speech”.
“We are the new free speech movement,” said Naweed Tahmas, a Berkeley political science major and spokesman for the group. His organization filed a lawsuit against the university, arguing that the school’s requirements that the speech be held during daytime and at a certain venue violate the rights to free speech, due process and equal protection under the law.
He also complained that the Berkeley police had not been more proactive about the protests at the Yiannopoulos event, saying that when he and others were escorted from the venue, “protesters shouted: ‘Fuck the Berkeley College Republicans’”.
“The university should have made more arrests.”
Yiannopoulos has seized on the free speech issue as well, declaring that he will return to Berkeley for a “free speech week” and give out a new award named after Mario Savio, one of the key student leaders of the free speech movement.
The adoption – or co-optation – of the free speech movement has raised some eyebrows.
Daniel Savio, the son of Mario Savio and a composer, called the idea of Yiannopoulos’s award “some kind of sick joke”.
Savio argued that while his father would have broadly supported all people’s rights to speak on campus, there are limits when it comes to speech that directly threatens vulnerable people. Yiannopoulos has previously targeted individual transgender students for harassment.
“Is freedom of speech such an important principle that we can afford to uphold it even when it means sacrificing the safety of some other folks?” Savio said.
Robert Cohen, a history professor at New York University who has written several books about the free speech movement, said that he saw the current contretemps as a “free speech hustle”.
“The free speech tradition that people made sacrifices to win is really in tatters,” Cohen said. He blamed the devolution on the “short-sighted” reactions of the left and the “opportunistic and cynical game that these rightwingers are playing”.
When the university voted to allow political speech on campus in 1964, he said, they also insisted that the administration be allowed to regulate the “time, place and manner” of such activity so as not to interfere with the normal functioning of the university.
“If I want to have a rally, I can’t do it in your English class,” Cohen said. “If having an evening talk by a rightwing bigot is going to do $100,000 in property damage and disrupt the university, they have always had the right to say, no, do it during the daytime.”
This argument was echoed by Dan Mogulof, a university spokesman, who said that Coulter was “welcome on this campus” but that the college Republicans had not consulted with the administration to find an appropriate date and venue before booking the speaker, making it difficult for them to ensure public safety.
In a city with a well-developed anti-fascist activist base, rightwing groups – including militia organizations, the “alt-right”, white nationalists and Trump supporters – appear to have had a realization. In part because of the “antifa” ethos that extreme rightwing movements must be confronted by any means necessary to stop fascism, rightwing groups are nearly guaranteed a confrontation – and headlines.
But beyond the violence and beyond the rhetorical struggle for the moral high ground, Rosenthal argued, some extreme rightwing figures were targeting the city because they view streetfighting as a precursor to a radical rightwing revolution, as was seen in the Weimar Republic in pre-Nazi Germany.
“The most significant element in the definition of a classic fascist movement is the marriage between an electoral party and a private militia,” Rosenthal said. The Republican party has not definitively distanced itself from the far right, he pointed out, while streetfights can foster the formation of militias.
“What Richard Spencer saw in what happened in Berkeley was the germ of the ‘alt-right’ beginning to form both sides of that marriage.”
James Anderson, an editor of itsgoingdown.org, an anti-fascist news site, pointed out: “The only thing that does bring these people together is the idea of attacking the left, attacking anarchists, attacking anti-fascists. That’s the one point of unity.”
The school at least seems resigned to confronting its role as host as it attempts to stay true to its principles of academic freedom.
“We can’t isolate and hermetically seal ourselves off,” Mogulof said. “This is the reality of the world we live in.”
(Courtesy, the Guardian of London)
FIVE DEAD IN HEROIN OVERDOSES IN TEN DAYS IN SANTA ROSA:
REAL DIRT COMPOST WORKSHOP
Saturday, April 29 from 10:00am to 3:30pm (Lecture 10:00am —1:00pm; Hands-on 1:30pm —3:30pm)
As gardeners, we know that the health of the soil determines the health of the plants growing in that soil. This class will explore different ways to work with and improve the soil in your backyard for optimal vegetable gardening. Compost will be built, smelled, touched, discussed and loved on this day. MCBG Lead Gardener Jaime Jensen teaches the essential skills to develop a strong vegetable garden for years to come with this hands-on, brains-on training. Cost is $35 per class (includes Gardens admission for the day; non-refundable). Please reserve space by phoning 707-964-4352 ext. 16 or stop by The Garden Store at MCBG.
For more details visit www.gardenbythesea.org.
PG&E PROPERTY TAX PAYMENTS
The property taxes paid in 2016 was $1,444,810.50. The franchise fees for both gas and electric paid for the county totaled $178,474.32. For unincorporated Mendocino County, the total in 2016 was $582,285.33.
Deanna Contreras, Corporate Relations, firstname.lastname@example.org, Office: 707-577-7123
PG&E INCREASED ELECTRICITY COSTS 44% LAST YEAR
Dear Representative Jared Huffman,
PG&E’s website says my costs last year, after deducting credit for our solar generation, was $1383, compared to $703 the previous year, nearly doubling. That site didn’t give the kw used, so I called them and learned the following:
DATE USAGE KW COST BILL
11/9/15 5838kw $0.1205/kw $703.41
11/4/16 7964kw $0.1737/kw $1383.31
difference 2126kw $0.0532/kw $679.90
increase 36.42% 44.15% 96.66%
So, the apparent reason that our bill almost doubled is the 36% increase in usage and the 44% increase in the cost of electricity. That one-year increase seems outrageous. Is there anything you or I can do about it? Is the PUC working for PG&E instead of for us citizens? Any thots or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
If Macron wins, the first lady of France will be 25 years older than her husband–she’s 64. He married his high school teacher. Interesting psychodynamics, eh?
Look at the bright side, at least lovely Melania Trump won’t have gorgeous Carla Bruni Sarkozy as a fashion competitor.
My list of the world’s most beautiful ceremonial women (for ribbon cutting and superfluous national jobs):
- Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway
- Queen Letizia of Spain
- Queen Rania of Jordon
- Melania of Trump
- Queen Maxima of the Netherlands
- Princess Madeleine of Sweden
- Katherine, Duchess of Cambridge
- Marie-Chantel of Greece
- Mrs. Trudeau
EASY CRAIG, EASY BIG CHAMPION
Self-realized Self, sitting here at a computer in the Mechanics Institute Library in San Francisco, being nondualistically the Divine Absolute, knows that the contemporary postmodern earth plane is gone fuckin' crazy and confused, and that the planet earth itself is lookin' like shit, with species goin' extinct, and the motherfuckers in Washington D.C. are being mechanical and ridiculous, in promising to "reindustrialize" the nation, somehow making America great again. What the fuck? The radical response to this political absurdity must be constant. It's good that the good continue to act, to take action in the face of this dangerous worldly mental-derangement. Their adharmic mantrams are: "Let's kill everything!" "Let's be mechanical and kill every single thing!" "Let's be materialistic and stupid and consume everything!" "Fuck the ones who don't profit financially from the multi-national corporate military industrial network. Let them starve!" Retrospectively, it is good that dissent is alive in the land. Yes, we must continue to offer our messages of peace in the face of the crazy bastards who want to consume everything and kill everybody. Always, the peace and justice protesters must continue expressing their messages. Yes, the Earth First! monkeywrenchers must continue dismantling the ugly machinery of the materialists. Yes, we must collectively condemn the bluffing bullshit fantasizers in world political capitols. Yes, we must represent the Divine Absolute, because we are that...and we know it. This is our power!!! I want this message published. I want this message shared with the whole world. I want to be contacted to form a spiritually based direct action oriented affinity group. I want the goddam evil one's head delivered on a recycled metal platter to the Earth First! Round River Rendezvous in northern California on the Fourth of July. Thank you.
Craig Louis Stehr
April 25, 2017
STAND WITH ROSS VALLEY SCHOOLS
TAKE ACTION! TELL YOUR SENATOR TO SUPPORT SB 808
Big thanks to everyone who has offered to help unite our community against the conditionally approved, Prop 39 Charter School. It has been incredible to watch everyone come together across all schools in this unprecedented way. Our numbers are growing daily. It's time to take action! The Prop 39 Charter was denied twice by our locally elected school board, and once by the Marin County Board of Education, before winning approval from the appointed members of the State Board of Education. Senate Bill 808 will make locally elected school boards the final authority on charter petitions, and shut down their ability to appeal up the chain. If SB 808 had been law, our community and district would have been spared the division and wasteful spending caused by the special-interest Charter.
Please click on the below link to ask the Senate Education Committee to approve SB 808 in their meeting tomorrow: https://actionnetwork.org/letters/tell-your-senator-to-support-sb-808?source=direct_link Follow us on twitter at http://standwithrossvalleyschools.us11.list-manage1.com/track/click?u=0b89edf443e23549564a0610f&id=ee5d85d2bc&e=a7c23b5ca5 to stay up to date with pop up locations, action items and breaking news.
Sending our best, as always,
The Families and Friends of Ross Valley Schools
MEMORIAL DAY, 2017
This Memorial Day, 2017
If I make myself a sheep, will the wolves eat me?
If I can’t stand behind our troops, shall I stand in front of them?
If I can write poems and paint portraits and landscapes, am I free?
Socrates said, Know yourself, so I keep looking.
Dear God, give us a world without war this Memorial Day.
Composed 24 April 2017. Headlands Coffeehouse, 9am.
Sincerely, Diana Patricka Farina Bengladesh Vance
Uptown Fort Bragg, California, USA
JULY 4, 1962
poem for my daughters
by John Sakowicz
There, at twilight, a wayward white ash strobbed
at the far end of a meadow,
at the old Adolf Zukor estate,
in the Rockland County, New York
of my childhood.
A constellation of fireflies had settled into the ash
every few seconds as one.
Fireflies flash on. Flash off. On. Off. On. Off. On.
It were if the ash were illuminated from within.
The light burst inside my head
again and again.
It was July 4, 1962, and I was waiting in the meadow
with my father for the fireworks to begin.
I was ten-years old.
For the briefest instant -- a nano of a nanosecond -- I saw
through the ash into that world
poets and mystics call the "almost invisible".
All invisible/imagined/dreamed -- in the early night -- I saw
you...you, and your sisters.
You were the yet-unborn, nascent unborn spirits,
waiting to be born,
waiting to call me your dad.
You were flying in gentle circles.
You were swimming in a flood of light.
As light was starting to pool around my ankles
and rise up to my knees,
I heard the disembodied, distant voice of my own father
shout to me.
"Let go of my hand, my son. Don't fight it.
Obey," he said.
"Lie on your back and let the deluge carry you
beyond the sweep
of my own love for you."
I loved my father. I even looked like him. But I obeyed
and let go of his hand,
and I stood upright for as long as I could in that river.
It was the river of quantum entanglement.
Now, as my eyes get used to darkness,
despite everything that followed
in the years since 1962,
despite every damn thing --
the falls and brokenness,
the breakups and divorces,
the walking with ghosts,
the grieving for time I had missed with you,
and the years of not quite touching you --
I found you.
I found you.
The river took me to you.
* * *
For quantum physicists, time is an entanglement phenomenon, which places all equal clock readings of correctly prepared clocks, or of any objects usable as clocks, into the same history.
This was first fully theorized by Don Page and William Wootters in 1983. The Wheeler–DeWitt equation that combines general relativity and quantum mechanics – by leaving out time altogether – was introduced in the 1960s and it was taken up again in 1983, when the theorists Don Page and William Wootters made a solution based on the quantum phenomenon of entanglement. Page and Wootters argued that entanglement can be used to measure time.
In 2013, at the Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca Metrologica (INRIM) in Turin, Italy, researchers performed the first experimental test of Page and Wootters' ideas. Their result has been interpreted to confirm that time is an emergent phenomenon for internal observers but absent for external observers of the universe just as the Wheeler-DeWitt equation predicts.
Physicist Seth Lloyd says that quantum uncertainty gives rise to entanglement, the putative source of the "river of time". According to Lloyd; "The river of time is an arrow -- or direction of flow -- of increasing correlations." The approach to entanglement would be from the perspective of the causal "directional flow of time", with the assumption that the cause of the measurement of one particle determines the effect of the result of the other particle's measurement.