- PA Shootout
- Candelaria Resigns
- Philo Faster
- SMART Scam
- Little Dog
- Stephens Resignation
- iPhone Accident
- Quiz Night
- Cannabis Workshops
- Yesterday's Catch
- Clueless Democrats
- Albion School
- Coming Attractions
- Doctors Campaign
- Confronting Wahhabism
- Wild Horses
- Library Amnesty
- Peace Boat
- Russian Revolution
- Navarro-by-the-Sea Day
- Libs Mobilizing
- Ukulele Class
- Emergency Sadhana
FATAL SHOOTING IN POINT ARENA (Dead Men Tell No Tales)
Sheriff’s Press Release: On June 6, 2017 at approximately 6:34 PM, a caller contacted the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office Dispatch Center to report being involved in a shooting at his residence located in the 43000 block of Eureka Hill Road in Point Arena. The caller, a 43 year-old male, reported he was in his residence when Raymond J. White, 37, of Point Arena, arrived and the pair engaged in a shooting that ultimately resulted in White's death. Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies and Emergency Medical Services personnel responded and subsequently confirmed White's death. Mendocino County Sheriff's Detectives and investigators from the Mendocino County District Attorney's Office responded to conduct investigations into White's death. The investigation revealed White arrived at the 43 year-old male's residence and contacted his estranged wife (32 year-old female) in the driveway. During the contact, White physically assaulted his estranged wife and threatened to shoot her with a handgun which he had brought to the residence. White subsequently forced his way into the front of the residence while armed with the handgun. The 43 year-old male hearing the commotion in the driveway earlier, armed himself with a handgun. After White forced entry into the residence, the 43 year-old male encountered White. The pair fired multiple rounds at each other resulting in White sustaining multiple gunshot wounds and dying as a result. Initial information collected by investigators indicates the 43 year-old male and White's estranged wife were involved in a dating relationship at the time of the shooting incident. This investigation is still ongoing and any persons with knowledge of this incident are encouraged to contact the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office by calling 707-463-4086 (Dispatch) or 707-234-2100 (Tip Line).
MEANWHILE, in Boonville, the Boonville school board, emerging at 11:50pm Tuesday (June 6) from yet another four-hour closed session, announced only that Jared Candelaria has resigned from the job he was offered, and may have held in theory, as a teacher at AV Elementary. There was much opposition from parents to Candelaria's appointment because the 31-year-old Cloverdale resident was arrested in February of 2016, while teaching at Yokayo Elementary in Ukiah, and charged with “felony possession and transportation of a controlled substance, specifically Oxycodone, a Schedule Two narcotic opioid pain medication.”
THE REST of the closed session had to do with the legal battle between the district and two of its discharged administrators. High school principal Keri St. Jeor was not re-hired for a second year as principal, but was offered a position as a Spanish teacher. He has hired an attorney to contest his demotion, the reasons for which have not been revealed. Elementary school principal, Dr. Katherine Reddick, was placed on paid administrative leave after a confrontation with school district superintendent, Michelle Hutchins. Dr. Reddick has also hired an attorney. The school district is haphazardly represented by an office of lawyers based in Santa Rosa funded out of edu-dollars.
PRETTY CLEAR what happened here. The guy was sailing along to a new job with AV Not-So-Unified when Facebook ignited with his legal history, and now…..
IT TOOK FOUR HOURS…
Re: report out of Tuesday night closed session. There was one report out: The Board accepted Jared Candelaria’s resignation effective June 6, 2017.— Richard Browning, AVUSD School Board Chairman
PHILO RESIDENTS were surprised Wednesday when they noticed that Caltrans had up and raised the speed limit from 30 to 35 mph without so much as a by-the-by. Not that it was a surprise in the long view, but several locals were still engaged in a review of Caltrans’ badly flawed speed survey which was improperly noticed and opposed by everyone but Caltrans. They thought they had more time because of the delayed Caltrans back and forth, so now that effort turns into a more difficult rear-guard action.
WHEN WILL SMART SERVICE START?
DRIVING south early this morning, I had to laugh at the fully illuminated Cloverdale Train Station, an ethereal ghost ship of a structure looming up out of the morning mists. An outsider might think, "Hey! Instead of driving to the city I think I'll catch the train." Not in our life times, Bub, if ever.
IN 1960, two trains a day, two southbound, two northbound, ran between Sausalito and Eureka. If your ultimate destination was the city, you rode the ferry to and from across the bay at Sausalito. And, miraculously, from the Mendocino Coast at Fort Bragg, you could board an eastbound train for Willits and make a south or northbound connection at Willits.
FAST FORWARD TO 2017, and you have the hugely expensive and continually postponed SMART train perpetually poised to run from San Rafael to the airport area north of Santa Rosa at no convenience and prohibitive ticket prices to daily commuters and, once it's operating, of interest only to day tripping tourists.
THE OLD NORTHWEST PACIFIC RAILROAD primarily hauled freight; its route was designed for that purpose, not passengers. But the SMART train runs along the old Northwest Pacific route which, mostly, skirts the Bay south of Santa Rosa.
SMART is dumb for most of the people commuting by car along 101 whose congestion SMART was sold as relieving.
THE WHOLE RAILROAD show, as it has devolved over the years into the Northcoast Democratic Party scam it is today, is a kind of railroad version of the movie, Chinatown, with former congressman Doug Bosco as the real life mastermind of what is essentially, a swindle.
POOR CLOVERDALE. They agitated for their train station for years until they got it in the middle 1980s. The thinking seemed to be, "If we build it the trains will come." Cloverdale is still waiting, and will be waiting for many more years, perhaps forever.
A QUARTER-CENT sales tax imposed on Marin and Sonoma was passed into law after two prior failed tries. It promised that a SMART train would link Cloverdale and Larkspur in 2010 (!)
SMART doesn't own the tracks it runs on. Bosco, er, the Northcoast Railroad Authority, owns the tracks with Bosco handsomely paid to function as general counsel for the track's owners, the Democrat-created, NCRA. SMART, when and if it runs on a regular basis, will pay Bosco, aks the Northcoast Railroad Authority or NCRA for use of the tracks.
NCRA's "code of ethics" (sic) prohibits any member of its board to discuss anything the full board has approved. If you happen to be a dissident board member, you can't reveal anything you might consider wrong on pain of excommunication.
THE RECENT SALE of the NCRA's Ukiah station for the new County Courthouse on West Perkins that nobody wants and will further damage central Ukiah's struggling business district, is one more inside job by the Northcoast Democrats.
OUR OVER-LARGE Superior Court is joined at the hip to the Northcoast Democratic Party, which in turn is joined at the other hip to Bosco and the NCRA. It was insider baseball all the way as the valuable West Perkins property belonging to the NCRA was designated, then sold to the state for the new Courthouse nobody wants except our delegation of Democratic Party Superior Court judges. The new County Courthouse will consist entirely of courtrooms and their majesties' "chambers." Toot-toot. All aboard!
ANYONE INTERESTED IN THE PARTICULARS OF THE NCRA SCAM can find them at these very interesting links from the AVA, LostCoastOutpost and Friends of the Eel River:
Conclusion/Excerpt: “The Northwest Pacific (NWP) Railroad operator is using the North Coast Railroad Authority (NCRA) and its Democratic Party powerbroker connections to make millions by doing overpriced repairs on segments of the line south of Willits, then charging high interest on the money they loan to themselves.”
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “The cat from next door, or wherever it's from, is spending more and more time over here. They're feeding it so I expect it will be a regular. I never chased cats, and I don't mind them, but they are total deadbeats. The only time you even see 'em is when they want food. Me, I earn my keep watchdogging.”
[Repost for purpose of comment…]
WHY I RESIGNED FROM THE COUNTY PENSION BOARD
by Ted Stevens
When a body is heading toward the bottom, and is in denial, at some point you need to get out of the way. For six years I tried my hardest at intervention.
The straw that broke the camel’s back was the vested interest vote refusing to reconcile the differences between our actuary and our investment advisor. In my prior attempts to address this difference I had been promised that this would be the time for review. When review time was upon us they shut it down.
The actuary (Segal) suggested a rate of 7% with a 55% confidence. The investment advisor (Callan) suggested a rate of 6.4%, netting about 6% after expenses, with a 50% confidence. One percent on 6% is a material difference. A higher rate keeps contributions lower for employees.
Even Fitch, the bond and financial rating company, uses 6% as a rate of return assumption for public pensions.
Is the actuary a better forecaster? Well let’s look at their track record. As with the 7%, you can’t justify their rates historically either. From their prior projections we have about $1.20 in county debt (almost all from pension) for every $1.00 of county assets (the highest negative net worth of any county with a pension like ours). Due to past actuarial losses, the county has twice borrowed millions in bonds to put in the plan. We are still paying on the bonds and the plan is deeply underfunded again. The county alone pays about 50 cents in pension costs on every dollar of payroll. Even with these unbelievable county payments a new dollar never makes it to the plan. We have to use all the employee and employer contributions, and still sell plan assets, to pay retiree benefits each month. The actuary says our plan is about 70% funded; Stanford Public Policy Professor Joe Nation says about 40% funded.
Why would a majority of the board be so fervent to rubber stamp this track record? Is it blind faith in sorcerers? No, it is because 6 of the 9 directors are participants in the plan. The actuarial seers are all hired by Moral Hazard majorities and focused on the hand that feeds them. Whenever there is a low-balled number the taxpayers and users of county services must pay for any shortage; the employees pay nothing.
A Moral Hazard is where one group makes risky bets and pockets the winnings, but someone else must absorb the risk of any losses. By the laws of economics and human nature these usually end poorly. With a vested interest super majority board structure the track record of the plan shouldn’t be a surprise.
Why wouldn’t you play the slots if you could take the jackpot and someone else has to pay your casino tab? It takes unbelievable moral strength to overcome the laws of economics and human nature.
I would have expected the board to at least humor me on a rate reconciliation. They know I understand the markets and have made a major commitment to understand the complexities of these plans. By vocation I am a 30 years plus investment and financial professional with college degrees in related areas (Business, Economics and Master’s Degrees in Finance and Taxation). I have third and fourth generation clients, have managed individual and corporate retirement plans for over 30 years, and have never had a single complaint. I serve and have served on several corporate and not-for-profit boards. I say this not to blow my own horn, but to show my credentials. I imagine many would say I am as qualified as any on the retirement board and as qualified as any of our outside advisors. Why did a board majority refuse to study the rate differential? Because they can!
I also have discovered another very important point. It is pretty clear the top financial minds in our county really don’t understand how this plan works. The Moral Hazard aside, if the plan is too complicated for our county’s highest in financial aptitude to grasp, it is probably too complex for the citizens to guarantee.
It’s almost certain the pension plan will continue to impose more long-term debt at the 7% rate.
I now believe this plan will fail. It is not sustainable. Borrowing for an asset is okay, but it is a fool’s errand to borrow for yesterday’s operational expenses.
I have tried my best at reason. The longer it takes the worse it will be.
* * *
A CLOSE OBSERVER of the County pension system commented: "Stephens fails to grasp that the assumed rate of return as recommended by the actuary and the projected rate of return as projected by the investment advisor are determined using different methodologies for different purposes. Stephens, who brings up the rate of return at almost every meeting, was told to wait for the comprehensive review that is done every three years. That is what he was told to wait for. He was never told that the actuarial assumed rate of return and projected return as determined by the investment adviser would be reconciled.
THE RETIREMENT BOARD did lower the assumed rate of return recommended by the actuary, but not as much as Stephens wanted. Like almost every other public pension plan, there is a significant unfunded liability. That much is true. But the plan is not in failure and neither the plan nor the County are anywhere near bankruptcy. Every retiree will continue to get paid the full pension they earned, the County will continue to pay all its bills when they come due, and the County keeps improving its credit rating and adding to its reserves. Stephens was never able to reconcile the fundamental differences, which are dictated by state law, between public pension systems and private investments accounts.
STOP THE MUSIC!
One Monday, June 5, around 3pm, a grass fire on the shoulder of Highway 101 near Calpella north of Ukiah slowed and stopped traffic while firefighters put it out and CHP managed traffic. About 3:48 while traffic was still slow in the area Justin Oneal, 27 of Redwood Valley, was driving his 2001 Toyota Tacoma southbound on 101 and had come to a stop behind traffic just south of the Calpella exit with a relative, John Oneal in the passenger seat. Oneal turned on his emergency flashing lights to warn traffic behind him. Elena Goss, 19, of Kelseyville, was driving southbound behind Oneal and looked down to change the music on her iPhone while driving. When she looked up she saw that traffic had come to a stop ahead of her. Goss applied the brakes and began sliding. Her 2009 Ford Focus then collided with the rear of Oneal’s Tacoma. The Tacoma overturned into the median and the Focus came to a stop in the outside lane blocking traffic. Multiple bystanders stopped to help the involved parties who were subsequently transported to the Ukiah Valley Medical Center by ambulance with, by shear luck, minor injuries. All parties were wearing seatbelts. (CHP Press Release)
IMPRESSIVELY, the youthful Ms. Goss, a standout volleyball player at Mendo College, quickly fessed up about her negligence on her facebook page, complete with accident photos:
“Soo I didn't really want to make a post about this, but it's only right to share my experience. I know we are all guilty of looking at our phones while driving at least once in our lives. They always say ‘no texting and driving.’ I wasn't texting. I picked up my phone and glanced at my screen. And that's all it takes. Granted, I wasn't expecting a car to be stopped in the fast lane on a freeway. But if I hadn't looked at my phone I would've been able to stop in time. Instead, I drove 70 mph straight into a stopped truck. Causing that truck to flip. Luckily, God was with all of us and we all ended up with a few bruises and scratches. And now I'm left with the consequences and a quick flashback in my head of me ramming into the truck. There's no explaining the amount of stupidity and guilt I feel. So please don't be afraid to share this and show the affects of being distracted on the road.”
YOU KNOW THE QUIZ MAKES SENSE
Yes, folks, we're on the eve of another night of fun, frivolity, and furrowed brows as the General Knowledge and Trivia Quiz takes place tomorrow at Lauren's Restaurant in Boonville - that's the 2nd Thursday of June - the 8th... It all gets going at 7pm and I cannot imagine why you would not be there...
Hope to see you,
Steve Sparks, Quiz Master...
COUNTY TO HOST COMMUNITY OUTREACH WORKSHOPS ON THE CANNABIS TRACK AND TRACE PROGRAM
The County of Mendocino has selected SICPA to provide a Plant to Sale Inventory Tracking Software System (ITSS) for the County to support the Medical Cannabis Cultivation Ordinance. This system will be used by organizations permitted by the County to operate a medical cannabis business which cultivates, manufactures, distributes, tests, delivers, transports, and/or dispenses medical cannabis in the unincorporated areas of the County.
Mendocino County Chief Executive Officer, Carmel J. Angelo stated, “SICPA’s program will allow the County to track and trace medical cannabis products throughout the supply chain. This will assist the County’s code enforcement program and provide the County with a unique brand identifier for Mendocino County cannabis products.” She continued, “We are pleased to partner with SICPA, a global leader in track and trace with extensive experience in California.”
The SICPA team will launch the Calorigin platform as the ITSS, which has been used successfully as the pilot programs in Humboldt and Yolo Counties and is now being used to extend the pilot user base in Yolo. SICPA has partnered with Form 10 Group, who will be providing training and user support services for the County’s Track and Trace program.
On June 14 and 15, 2017, the County and SICPA will be holding community outreach workshops to discuss the new program, training, support and next steps for potential Cannabis program permittees. The workshops are as follows:
Wednesday June 14, 2017
Fort Bragg Town Hall, 363 N. Main Street, Fort Bragg; 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Boonville Veterans Building, 14470 Highway 128, Boonville; 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thursday June 15, 2017
Harwood Hall – Laytonville, 44400 Willis Avenue, Laytonville; 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Ukiah Veterans Building, 293 Seminary Avenue, Ukiah; 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
CATCH OF THE DAY, June 7, 2017
JEM BAILEY, Seal Rock, Oregon/Ukiah. Failure to register.
BRANDON CLELAND, Willits. Receiving stolen property.
DANIEL ELIGIO, Boonville. Probation revocation.
DONALD GARRISON, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Failure to appear.
MAYA HUSTON, Portland, Oregon/Leggett. DUI.
OSCAR JIMENEZ, Ukiah. Failure to appear.
JUSTIN JUSTICE, Lakeport/Ukiah. Drunk in public. (Frequent flyer.)
RASHARD LAFRANCE, Miramar/Willits. First degree robbery, false imprisonment, interfering with police communications.
SEAN LEFFLER, Covele, Probation revocation.
LEJON NUNNELY, Sacramento/Ukiah. Parole violation.
DONOVAN SAARI, Sacramento/Windsor/Willits. First degree robbery, false imprisonment, evasion.
What happened to the Democratic Party reform movement? What happened to the Sandernista rebels? What happened to Elizabeth Warren?
The anal liberal democratic establishment is still in control of a party that's six feet under and they don't even know it, because their heads are up where the sun don't shine.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
When this continual Stock Market rise truns into a bloodbath and companies stop completely, and it will, does anyone actually expect The Donald to raise a calming hand and stop the panicked race to get the hell to some kind of safety? Does anyone expect a compassionate intervention to put people back to work again?
If the US ‘strikes’ N Korea, which sounds like it might just do, will anyone trust that The Donald actually knows what he is doing when the unintended consequences speed out of control?
When will Sean Spicer quit? My God, the latest news briefings are now so full of disrespect on both sides they might as well stop doing them. This is beyond a reset fix. Trust and respect has gone, and the smell works its way upwards; all the way to Trump.
I think a nasty time of protest and violence could break out at any time as this continues to unravel. It won’t take much to light the fuse.
SINGLE PAYER IS NOT A TOP PRIORITY -- EVEN FOR DEMOCRATS WHO SAY THEY SUPPORT SINGLE PAYER.
The Democrats will not lead the charge for single payer in the United States.
Only the people, from the ground up, will lead.
But wait, you say.
Aren’t there 113 members in the House who have signed on to HR 676, the House single payer bill?
But have they signed on because a) they want single payer to become law in the United States?
Or have they signed on because b) they are being bombarded by citizens back home who are demanding it and the Democrats are just throwing their demanding citizens a bone?
Looks like the right answer is – b for bone.
Frank Kirkwood is a single payer activist in Pittsburgh. Kirkwood volunteers with the Western Pennsylvania Coalition for Single Payer Healthcare.
Kirkwood decided to check the websites of the 113 members of Congress who have signed onto HR 676.
Kirkwood checked to see how many of these co-sponsors state their support for HR 676 or for single payer or Medicare for All on the issues pages of their official web site or their campaign websites.
Only eight members did so.
How many of them mentioned their support on both their official and campaign web sites?
Only two – John Conyers (D-Michigan) – the lead sponsor of the bill – and Michael Capuano (D-Massachusetts).
“Congressional Democrats and the national Democratic Party don’t actually want to pass Medicare for All because that would be the end of the steady flow of campaign money the party receives from the for-profit health care industries,” Kirkwood says. “This money powers the careers of Party insiders and the political campaigns of their candidates. But, Democratic elected officials need to publicly appear to support HR 676 because it is extremely popular among Democratic voters. Democrats privately tell reformers that they support Medicare for All and, if anyone asks, they say – yes they have co-sponsored HR 676. But, when push comes to shove, they will not vote to pass HR 676 in the Congress. And they have little fear that push ever will come to shove because party leadership will not allow such a vote – as they did not in 2009.”
In an open letter to single payer activists, Kirkwood calls for a campaign to recruit and run single payer doctors for Congress.
“We should try to recruit physicians or retired physicians to run in both parties and in multiple Congressional districts,” Kirkwood writes. “Asking physicians to stand for election produces several benefits.”
“First, as doctors, the candidates will be presumed to be trustworthy, hard-working, honest, smart, accomplished, and motivated by an interest in the well-being of all.”
“Second, physicians can speak with authority and from personal experience about failures of the current health care system and the value of Medicare for All.”
“Third, if several physicians run, we will have created a “brand” that is easy for voters to remember and to associate with Medicare for All.”
“Fourth, it will not be necessary for each candidate to raise and spend large amounts of money to raise their individual profile in the public mind because the brand will produce publicity for every candidate.”
“The unusual nature of the project will make it news,” Kirkwood writes. “It will be a challenge to established self-interested politics by a collection of physicians focusing on one issue. This will be something that people will talk about – national news. It will be a project that can be replicated elsewhere.”
“If we get traction with the public, the Democratic Party establishment and its incumbents may recognize that they are on the wrong side of this issue and may respond by saying that they too stand for what the Doctors Campaign stands for – Medicare for All. Or they may stick to protecting the health care industries. In that case, the fight is on. If we can recruit enough physicians to stand for election, we should challenge incumbents, of both parties, in the primary and the general elections. We may not win many seats the first time out, but we will be putting the question to the voters and offering them something they don’t have now – a way to vote for what they really want on Election Day. It will be necessary to continue the campaign through several Congressional elections.”
Kirkwood says plainly that Obamacare cannot be fixed and that Trumpcare is cruel and unpopular.
“Health care costs are going to continue to rise,” he says. “More and more people will see the necessity of Medicare for All. But, our broken political system will still not be able to move us to the obvious solution. The political system must be disrupted in a major way. I don’t know who will do that, if not us.”
LONDON TERROR ATTACK: TIME TO CONFRONT WAHHABISM & SAUDI ARABIA
by John Wight
It is time for an honest conversation about Wahhabism, specifically the part this Saudi-sponsored ideology plays in radicalizing young Muslims both across the Arab and Muslim world and in the West, where in the UK people are dealing with the aftermath of yet another terrorist attack in which innocent civilians were butchered and injured, this time in London.
The US, British and French governments can no longer credibly claim to be serious about fighting terrorism or religious extremism while cosying up to what is a medieval kleptocracy in Riyadh. Just days prior to the attack in London it was reported that a UK government inquiry into the role of Saudi money in funding terrorism is likely to be shelved, due to the sensitive nature of its findings. The report was originally commissioned at the behest of the Liberal Democrats, while in coalition government with the Tories back in 2015. It was sanctioned by then Prime Minister David Cameron in return for Lib Dem parliamentary support for British airstrikes in Syria. Given that the British government just signed £3.5 billion worth of arms export licences to Saudi Arabia, the suppression of the report’s findings is a scandal.
The Saudis have long enjoyed diplomatic and political support from successive British governments, based on its largesse as the biggest customer of UK arms sales, which according to the UK-based organization, Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT), has been worth £4.1 billion since 2015. Some of the weapons sold to the Saudis are being used in its on-going war in Yemen, where its forces have been engaged in war crimes and crimes against humanity.
There are also the billions in Saudi investment into London, especially in the city’s lucrative property market. Money, as everyone knows, buys influence, including political influence, which is where we discern the pristine and unalloyed hypocrisy involved in demonizing Russia, Syria, and Iran, the countries that are in the front line against this medieval poison, while courting Saudi, Qatari, and other Gulf State business and money, where state-sanctioned imams spew out hate speech against ‘apostates’ and ‘infidels’ on a regular basis.
The most concerning development in recent years, however, vis-à-vis Saudi influence in the West, is the extent to which Riyadh has been funding the building of mosques as a way of promoting its ultra-conservative and puritanical interpretation of Islam, one completely incompatible with the 21st century.
In 2015 Germany’s Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel came out in public and accused the Saudis of funding mosques in which extremism is regularly promoted. In an interview with the German magazine Bild am Sonntag, Mr Gabriel said, “We have to make clear to the Saudis that the time of looking away is over. Wahhabi mosques all over the world are financed by Saudi Arabia. Many Islamists who are a threat to public safety come from these communities in Germany.”
Religious sectarianism and rigid adherence to an anti-human 7th century doctrine underpins what passes for justice in the kingdom itself. We are talking a country in which people are regularly and ritually beheaded, flogged, and even crucified for transgressing the law. In 2016 alone Saudi Arabia carried out 154 executions, many of those for non-violent crimes. Yet, regardless, for those who claim the mantle of democracy and human rights, slavishly defending the kingdom and its vile and barbaric practices has long been a received truth.
Let us be clear: Britain’s longstanding alliance with Saudi Arabia benefits nobody apart from UK arms companies and their shareholders. It is undeniably an alliance inimical to the country’s security, bringing its entire political establishment into disrepute as a consequence.
Three terrorist attacks in the space of three months carried out in the UK, in which civilians have been slaughtered, is an unacceptable price to pay for a foreign policy which at best is informed by cognitive dissonance and at worst sheer unadulterated mendacity.
Western governments cannot have it both ways; they cannot expect to defeat terrorism and protect their citizens while continuing to refuse to grasp the issue by its roots. The world is dealing with a malignant ideology, one that whether associated with Daesh, Nusra, or Saudi Arabia is the same. That this ideology has grown in traction in recent years is now self-evident, thus begging the question: what are we going to do about it?
People have the right to go out and enjoy themselves without being slaughtered. It is a fundamental right that unites people in London, Moscow, Paris, and Damascus. Those who would seek to deny them this right are the enemy of humanity and must be regarded and treated accordingly.
Make no mistake: the head of this Salafi-jihadi snake resides in Riyadh.
(John Wight is the author of a politically incorrect and irreverent Hollywood memoir – Dreams That Die – published by Zero Books. He’s also written five novels, which are available as Kindle eBooks. You can follow him on Twitter at @JohnWight1)
A SCREAM IN THE NIGHT
by Manuel Vicent
Translated by Louis S. Bedrock
In The Scream, the famous painting of Edvard Munch, a man with no backbone, in a silent landscape, releases a scream from the depths of his being that causes him to cover his own ears with his hands.
That painting was realized in Paris in 1893, a year before the writer Louis-Ferdinand Destouches was born in a suburb outside of Paris called Courbevoie. The writer, known by the pseudonym “Céline,” was the son of a woman who ran a shop for embroidery and a man who was an insurance agent and who liked to draw ballerinas. This writer picked up the demented scream emitted by the Munch character and bore its echo to the depths of a twentieth century night in its literary incarnation, spinning it into a voyage in which he was running away from himself and invoking posterity with a violent speech addressed to worms.
Young Celine participated in the war of 1914 enlisting in the calvary; he had cheerfully gotten involved in that slaughter without any ideals, just for the thrill of gambling—as he was rolling the dice against the Germans. During a patrol in Ypres, for which he volunteered, a grenade gravely wounded him in the arm and then burst one of his eardrums, leaving him with a permanent buzz in his head which at times became a hurricane force wind similar to madness. He was given a medal because of that injury; however, one day he got fed up with this nonsense of cannons and sabers; he pretended to be mad and deserted just for the hell of it, thus ending his life as a hero.
For a time, the black wind inside his head merely impelled him to travel and consume women. He imagined that they were ballerinas—perhaps ballerinas that he subconsciously absorbed from the drawings of his father. In his first trip to London in 1915, after immersing himself in the swamp of the underworld, he married a French waitress named Suzanne Nebout. Their union lasted less than a year; then, fleeing her or himself, he ran away to Africa where he was awarded for the effort with malaria.
By then, Louis-Ferdinand Céline was mature enough to perceive the vile flavor of life and, imbued with pessimism, he studied medicine upon returning to Paris, tried his luck a second time marrying Edith Follet. This marriage too failed after two years. By that time, he had experience with many women, but none of them danced.
Céline practiced medicine in a hospital for the poor in Clichy, a suburb of Paris, where the future writer had his fill everyday of people who were sick and without hope: physical ruins—a state he extrapolated to the rest of humanity since it was the same thing he had seen in Togo, Senegal, and Nigeria, the jungles of which he had he had penetrated like a rat passing through a bag of garbage until reaching, as did Conrad, the heart of darkness.
He came to the conclusion that all poor people were bad people and that even when they stopped being poor, it took a long time for them to become good. To escape his spiritual misery, he continued to dream of ballet dancers, an obsession that impelled him to hang around the vicinity of the Opera theater in search of fresh, diaphanous female flesh. In the Paix cafe, he crossed paths with Albert Camus from time to time—Camus was involved in the same hunt. They never exchanged greetings, but each knew everything about the other and the insurmountable distance that separated them.
One day Camus said, —In spite of everything, there’s more to admire in man than to despise.
Céline, on the other hand, never found one reason in his entire life to redeem man from his own excrement. From the abyss of his blind nihilism, he believed that man had no right to exist. It has always been a mystery that this man didn’t commit suicide.
Far from shooting himself, Céline became an official for the League of Nations and on one of his trips to Geneva he finally met a a ballerina. She was a North American named Elizabeth Craig and she took him down all the avenues of pleasure without sparing him the street of bitterness. It was to her he dedicated Journey to the End of Night, an indictment against mankind—as was Munch’s The Scream.
While this sensual red-head with cobalt eyes rocked his soul and tossed it from the summit of beauty to the depth of all vice, Céline was convulsively writing his own nightmare. The pernicious ballerina loved and hated him at the same time; she aroused him with erotic games she played in his presence with other ambiguous female friends in her apartment on the Rue Lepic; she revered him, despised his writings, stood him up upon occasion, and in the end, returned to his side to lick his knees as if she were a beautiful dog.
To blend this destructive passion with the buzzing inside his head, Céline had to shatter language and syntax and throw himself from a high place into the void on every page.
When the ballerina left him for good one day to return to North America, the writer followed her and in order to persuade her to return to his side, he humiliated himself like a dog and even wrote a ballet for her. He went through the trouble of proposing the project to a Jewish Hollywood producer who had no idea of the fire he ignited in the soul of this love sick fellow when he rejected his idea.
The ballerina drowned herself in alcohol and one day in 1931, editor Robert Enoël received a package without a return address that contained the original copy of the novel. It took the people of the publishing house a while to locate the author and when Enoël finally met him, he found himself with a fellow who was tall, had a wolf-like face, pronounced cheekbones, and a contemptuous expression. He spoke like he wrote—with an angry sputter, a new style that wreaked havoc in bookstores.
Journey to the End of Night caused a sensation because of its casual breaking of forms and for the appeal always found in spark of evil placed at the service of a truculent nihilism. It was Céline’s own story written with a pen filled with vitriol: The war, the jungle, North America.
But success mixed with resentment formed a highly explosive combination.
At the end of his night, Celine took the wrong path. The disdain he felt for that Jewish producer led him to a violent demagogic anti-semitism and once he was immersed in the pond, the dark wind in his head impelled him to make a bad bet in the new game of darts. He became a Nazi.
After the war, he was sentenced to death and had to flee to Denmark. In the end, he received the humiliation of being pardoned. He died in Paris in 1961 in the company of his last wife, the writer Lucette Destouches, surrounded by all the accoutrements of a loser. However, through one great work alone, he had saved himself from a posterity of worms.
THANKSGIVING COFFEE JOINS THE FIGHT TO SAVE OUR WILD HORSES
On Wild Grounds
Coffee, Mustangs, and the American Spirit
by Megan Smithyman
Thanksgiving Coffee, an industry leader in social and environmental justice for over forty years, stands in defense of our wild horses. The vanguard of fair trade shade-grown coffee, Thanksgiving has helped their nonprofit partners raise much-needed funds to champion their missions through the Cause Coffee fundraising program. And now, Thanksgiving is proud to support the efforts of the American Wild Horse Campaign (AMWC) with the release of Wild Grounds Coffee.
Forty years ago, the American wild horse was in danger of disappearing from the western landscape forever. Cattle ranchers consider the mustangs as little more than vermin who compete with their cows for grassland feed. By means of hunting, poisoning, and harassment, the once abundant bands of wild horses were reduced to a population of only 25,000.
Outraged, the American people called upon their representatives in defense of the iconic mustang. In 1971, President Nixon signed a law to protect our national heritage from the ravages of private interests:
The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971
In 1971 Congress finds and declares that wild free-roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West; that they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people; and that these horses and burros are fast disappearing from the American scene. It is the policy of Congress that wild free-roaming horses and burros shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment, or death; and to accomplish this they are to be considered in the area where presently found, as an integral part of the natural system of the public lands.
Today, both livestock and wild horses have the right to roam the range, but the political power of the cattle ranchers is stronger then the political power of wild horses. In the forty years since the bill was passed, moneyed interests have worked tirelessly to chip away at rangeland that had been guaranteed to the horses. Now, the use of our publicly owned grazing lands is being prioritized to create market value for ranging cattle, which only provides for 3% of America’s beef consumption.
Unable to cull the herds or sell them for slaughter, the BLM began to round up what they considered to be an excess population. Today 35,000 horses, more than their entire population in the 1970’s, are kept in government holding pens. Not to be killed, yet never again to be free; this is a terrible fate to befall the national symbol of perseverance and freedom.
“The whole thing is cruel and lacks any sense of the American Spirit”, says Paul Katzeff, CEO of Thanksgiving Coffee and Past President of The Specialty Coffee Association of America, “We just gotta do something about the suffering to restore our own sense of freedom. Can you imagine the conditions? Thirty-five thousand wild horses in shade-less pens in 100 degree heat waiting to die?”
Now is the time to stand up in defense of our wild horses. If we don’t act now, these majestic animals could be gone within our lifetime and we will have been complacent in the loss of a living symbol of our cultural heritage. To help create awareness to the plight of mustang, the AWHC has launched the #ImWithTheBand campaign to defend wild horse families (known as bands) and to harness the power of the people to save our wild horses before it’s too late.
The American Wild Horse Campaign is a champion for America’s wild horses and burros and they have been calling on Congress to reform the current ‘holding pen’ policies. Not only would such methods keep these animals in the wild, where they belong, it would also save taxpayers millions of dollars annually by no longer funding the removal of wild horses from the range and stockpiling them in government holding facilities and paying for their feed and water and medical needs.
The mustang is a national icon, as tightly woven into the rich cultural fabric of America as baseball, apple pie and the bald eagle; a timeless symbol of freedom, the Old West, and the will to survive. But the future of our wild horses is once again in jeopardy. The current Administration has just asked Congress for permission to slaughter tens of thousands of mustangs, ensuring their virtual extinction from our Western public lands.
It is time to express our outrage once more. Thanksgiving Coffee Company, 2017’s Roaster of the Year, is sending Wild Grounds coffee out into the country with the mission to raise funds and educate others about the plight of our wild horses. Together, we will stand in defense of the mustangs who have an inalienable right to roam the western landscape, just as we stand up against those who would profit from their incarceration and eradication.
Join us. Stand up for America’s wild horses and the pioneer spirit we all share. Order a package of award winning Wild Grounds coffee and you are not just supporting the horses; you are also supporting fair trade for the farmers, organic shade-grown coffee that preserve rich jungles forests, and the ethical standards of a certified B corporation. Since 1972, we have been proud to bring you a beautiful cup of coffee that tastes just as good as it feels. Not Just A Cup, But A Just Cup.
LIBRARY FEE AMNESTY
The Mendocino County Library Announces Fee Amnesty Period
From June 10th through June 17th the Mendocino County Library will be offering a Fee Amnesty Period as part Summer Reading Program kickoff. All items checked in during this time will be checked in fee exempt.
GOLDEN RULE PEACE BOAT COMES TO MENDO
EPILOGUE TO A REVOLUTION
Saturday, June 10th at Captain Fletcher's Inn
Navarro River Redwood State Park
Free tours of historic Inn (ca 1865) from Noon to 5
BBQ all afternoon
Homemade Treats and Dessert
Beer, Wine, and other beverages served from the old bar
Amazing Silent Auction Items
Treasures to "take with you"
Quilts of the Coast by Charlotte Saunders on Display
"Uke Jam" on the Front Porch - noon to 1PM - bring your uke!
Free Musical Performances on the Front Porch from 1PM - 5PM, Featuring Pattie & Janna, John Bush, Marcus McCallen & Jon Faurot
Come on down to the Inn this coming Saturday, June 10th
Enjoy Navarro Beach with food, music and fun.
BBQ will be served all afternoon with a selection of hot dogs, sausages, hamburgers or veggie options with sides of slaw, pasta salad, pickles, chips, and watermelon. Along with delicious homemade cakes, cookies, bars and other treats. Serving local beers, hard cider, wine and non-alcoholic beverages. An amazing Silent Auction Items from local businesses and supporters - fine local wines and beers, gift certificates from local restaurants and other businesses, artwork, photographs, and assorted treasures. And quilts of the coast by Char Saunders on display. Bring your uke for the "uke jam" from noon till 1PM, or just come and listen to the line up of talented performers all afternoon till we close up at 5PM while you enjoy lunch and tour the Inn.
Call or email at 707-877-3477 or firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions, if you have a silent auction item to donate, or are able to help out during the event. We're a group of volunteers pulling this together and appreciate any and all support. Please spread the word! www.navarro-by-the-sea-center.org
Resistance Postcard Party
Wednesday June 28, 5:30 to 7:30
Caspar Community Center
Share wine, appetizers, information and action with other engaged citizens while working together to influence our representatives and elect progressive leaders in races that matter right now! Meet local activists from the Sister District Project and other citizens' action groups, including Mobilize Mendo, Women's March Huddles, Coast Democrats, and Indivisible. Donations of any size are encouraged. This event is sponsored by the Sister District Project, Mendocino Chapter. For more information visit https://www.sisterdistrict.com or email email@example.com
UKULELE CLASS FOR BEGINNERS, PART II
The next ukulele class at Redwood Coast Senior Center starts on Monday, June 19. Beginner Ukulele Part II will focus on playing - melodies, riffs, orchestration, chords and chord melody - and advancing your skills and enjoyment. You will want to know at least C, F, G, Am, D, and A chords. This will be a fun class with lots of happy surprises about playing with others. Class times are 2:30 - 3:30pm and will run June 19, 26, July 10, 17, 24, and 31 (taking a break for the Fourth of July week). The cost is $50 for the six classes. Feel free to contact me with any questions, and to let me know you are ready to sign up! I have room for three more students.
Pattie, firstname.lastname@example.org, 937-1732
GREEN TARA EMERGENCY SADHANA
Chanting "Om Tare Tuttare Ture Soha" invokes the Tibetan tantric goddess Green Tara. Bringing the energy of this rapid response deity into postmodern situations, is critical in these politically insane times, and also, radical environmentalism desperately needs more spiritual mojo in order to be effective. Climate scientists know that the planet earth's destabilized climate will begin a movement in the direction of a point of no return on August 21, 2017. Round the clock Green Tara Emergency Sadhana must be started, and kept up beyond August 21, 2017.
Craig Louis Stehr