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Mendocino County Today: Friday, June 30, 2017

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1938 - 2017

Jimmie (Jim) Lester Cooley April 11 1938 June 16 2017 Jim was born to Thomas Edward and Beulah Cooley sharecroppers in Monroe County Arkansas. Jims family moved to Northern California and settled in Anderson Valley California. Jim attended school in the "Little Red Schoolhouse" and Anderson Valley High School. In Anderson Valley Jim would meet the love of his life Doris Hughes and the two would marry when they were 17 and 15 respectively and were married for nearly 60 years when Doris passed away in November of 2014. Jim worked in the timber industry and held a Class A license for more than 50 years. Jim was a fun and charismatic man with a huge heart he loved life, his family and old westerns. Jim was a loving father and grandfather who had the ability to make you feel like you were the most important thing in his life. He was stubborn and ornery and lived life by his terms and we wouldn't have had it any other way. Jim had a great sense of humor and was known for his "Daddy jokes". Jim is survived by his son Doug (Donna) Cooley of Vacaville Ca., daughter Tammy Kuhn of Ukiah Ca., son Ryan (Nancy) Cooley of Ukiah Ca., Brother Paul Cooley of Napa Ca. and Brother Bill Cooley of Keno Or.. Jim has 4 grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great-grandchildren. Jim is preceded in death by his Wife Doris, daughter Karen Kennedy his parents and 4 siblings. Services will be held to honor Jims Memory at the Ukiah Elks Lodge on Saturday July 1st at 1:00pm. In lieu of flowers the family is asking donations be made in Jims name to either the Elks Purple Pig (benefitting children with disabilities) or to the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority Volunteer Fire-fighters Association.

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Eureka Police Department press release:


The Eureka Police Department have begun an investigation into an “at risk” missing mother and child. The mother, 37 year old Eureka resident Natalie Rashelle Wright, and her 19 month old daughter, Mack Chevelle Grant, were last seen on Monday night, June 26th, 2017, around 1800 hours. Natalie Wright had been in contact with friends and family on a consistent basis prior to her disappearance. Natalie Wright had received death threats that were under investigation prior to her disappearance. Anyone who knows the whereabouts of Natalie or Mackenzie should contact law enforcement or advise Natalie to make contact with law enforcement to confirm their safety.

Contact Senior Detective Ronald B Harpham at 707-441-4305 or Eureka Police dispatch at 707-441-4044.

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If you've been to Gallery Bookshop, you've probably been to A Cultured Affair Cafe. The little lunch counter around the corner? The one with the homemade soups and the best turkey sandwiches? And if you've been there, you've met the owners, Art and Laura, because they run it all by themselves. Art is sick, and they could use some help from all of the locals and visitors who love them and their restaurant. With your support, we'll help them get through this and reopen the cafe!

Art Evans

On May 8th, Arthur "Art" Evans was diagnosed with cancer in his right jaw. He will have surgery on July 5th, and four weeks later will begin simultaneous chemotherapy and radiation treatments lasting six weeks. While undergoing these treatments, he must live near Stanford Hospital. After time to recover from these treatments, it will probably be late winter before he can return to work.

Arthur and his wife Laura own A Cultured Affair Cafe in Mendocino. Because this is a mom-and-pop business, they will not have any income for several months. With the burden of medical expenses and related travel, they need the support of their friends, family, and community.

Arthur served his communities in Boulder Creek and Mendocino as a volunteer firefighter for 27 years and currently serves as one of the caretakers for the temple of Kwan Tai. Both he and his wife have donated often to local charities for over the years. For the first time in his life, he is asking for help.

Please give as much as you can. Every bit helps and is much appreciated by Art and Laura.

(Courtesy, MendocinoSportsPlus)

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The best option for the Willits bypass was the Western route. This would have connected the bypass to Highway 20 and Brooktrails, and avoided the wetlands and ag issues. Environmental mitigation would have been little or none. According to a retired Willits city planner, CalTrans manipulated the cost of the Western route to make it too expensive to be a viable option. Government agencies do these sort of things, we all know that. Why CalTrans did this is a mystery. Another key part of this mess was the lack of input from the city of Willits. Willits, for whatever reasons, never weighed in on what option was preferred. They could have, but didn't. They will pay the price, too.

ED NOTE: Supervisor John Pinches lobbied for the rail route through the Little Lake Valley as the likeliest, least expensive path for the Bypass. We thought so, too, but…

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And plaintiffs get attorney fees

Sonoma County Superior Court awards attorney fees for lawsuit over floodplain redwood logging in Gualala River “Dogwood” timber harvest plan

After halting logging in the environmentally sensitive mature floodplain redwood forest of the lower Gualala River, Judge René Chouteau of Sonoma County Superior Court awarded $162,000 in attorney’s fees to the successful parties in environmental litigation over CALFIRE’s approval of the Dogwood Timber Harvest Plan. The successful parties are the Petitioners, Friends of Gualala River, Forest Unlimited, and California Native Plant Society, represented by attorney Edward Yates. The fee award ruling was issued June 27, 2017.

Full Report:

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INTERESTING story in UDJ by Ashley Tressell.

In it we find this sentence: "She used the website Backpage as proof, having found nine women being advertised for sex in Ukiah on June 15. The site is a widely used platform for traffickers to market their 'product.'”

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Re: Dogs and their owners

Two items about dogs raised my hackles in the most recent AVA. The outrage about some dog owners declaring their animals service dogs when they are not.

Considering American society in general is going to hell in a handbasket, this in my opinion is a minor issue, if it needs to be an issue at all. Dog owners are trying to get around the stupid laws and restrictions on where the family pet is allowed to join them. I don't think most of them are trying to disrespect the true service animals that go thru lengthy training to become the amazing companions they are. Why, for example can I not bring my dog into a restaurant? I have been subjected to screaming infants and snot-nosed toddlers who chase each other around the dining room in many a restaurant. I have to tolerate that, but I can't bring my well behaved, leashed dog to lay quietly under my dinner table? As I say at the Bink wine tasting room, well behaved humans and their leashed pets are always welcome. I keep a water bowl and yummy treats at the ready.

Monika Fuchs,


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A READER WRITES. I got an alert about Little Dog’s (mis)behaviors: I got an email yesterday, sent, it says, from Little Dog. (It may have been sent to other AVA subscribers also, but that’s not clear to me.) The message asks that I send him dog treats ASAP, as he asserts he never gets many from his miserly owner—his words, not mine. He said he’d be forever grateful for any treats sent. In a side note, he also disparaged the old scraggly cat that hangs around the place, said the cat actually gets more treats and love than he does. Just to show you what a sucker I can be, I’ve sent a box of Milk Bone treats to the AVA address. I thought there might be a speck of truth in his message that he never gets enough dog treats. Anyway, that’s my true story…

THE LITTLE BUGGER is playing the pity card, is he? Be it known, despite his poor mouthing it, the guy lives like a king. We think the diminutive ingrate's fan club should know he eats so much he's in Diabetes Two range.

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The Depression and the New Deal in Mendocino County

by Robert Winn

Editor’s note: In 1989, history professor Robert Winn and a group of his students from College of the Redwoods researched and wrote Bridges, Huckleberries, and Robin Stew, which documented the impact on Mendocino County, particularly its coastal residents, of the Great Depression. Mendocino Historical Research, Inc. published the study. This story seems very relevant to the times we live in, even if our dominant cash crop now is neither peas nor huckleberries. Following are excerpts from this compelling narrative...

In the early twentieth century, Mendocino County’s economy was kept healthy by the rebuilding of San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake, the economic mobilization during the first World War, and the post-war building boom. But by the late 1920’s, building was slowing down all over the country, and the county’s mills began to feel the effects of a declining market. The Glen Blair Mill closed in 1925, the Albion mill in 1928. The county’s farmers felt the pinch somewhat earlier. Farm prices were… swept under with everything else in the riptide that followed the Great Crash of 1929.

The Fort Bragg Community Club in the 1920’s. In the early years of the Depression, the Community Club was the center for the collection and distribution of food, clothing, and fuel to needy families. (H.H. Wonacott, photographer: collection of the Mendocino County Museum, #83-27-1.)

The Depression hit Mendocino County hard. The value of products manufactured in the county (primarily lumber) fell from five million dollars in 1929 to two million in 1933, and the average annual wage in manufacturing fell from $1,864 to $878. The mills at Caspar and Mendocino were closed between 1931 and 1934, and the Fort Bragg mill was forced to cut back production and lay off workers. The bottom dropped out of agriculture and fishing as well.

For many people in the county, what the Depression meant was a shortage of jobs and a lack of cash. “There was virtually no money…,” recalls Carolanne Wuoltee. “I can remember the houses were always dark because you had to have cash to pay the electric bill, and there was so little cash that you didn’t turn the lights on unless you absolutely had to.”

Among the people most victimized by the Depression were those who were already on the edge when the hard times began. In Mendocino County, the Indians and the migrant workers fell into this category. According to John Biaggi, the Indians around Point Arena “were in a terrible state really.” The Beacon reported that “for several months the Indians have been about one jump behind the dead line and they have been living mostly on our donated by the national Red Cross.”

Migrant farm workers, and transients in general, were a common sight in Mendocino County in the 1930’s. Driven by lack of work elsewhere, people walked and rode the rails into the county in search of seasonal work in the pea and hop fields, the vineyards, and the apple and pear orchards… There was just enough work to attract them to the county, but not enough to provide more than the barest subsistence for them and their families. A transient shanty town made out of driftwood materialized on the bluff above the beach at Alder Creek. Most residents of the county then remember transients coming to their doors and asking to work for some food. Many of the migrants were “Okies,” refugees from the dust bowl states. Others were black or Mexican; they were among the least fortunate, because they were the least welcomed by the rest of the population. When the pea packers struck the pea packing company in June of 1934, demanding a raise from their wage of 18 cents per hamper, the workers refused even to negotiate until the company agreed to bar the “colored” and Mexican workers from the fields.

Making Do: For many of Mendocino County’s residents, making do was not a new thing. They had always hunted and fished, for instance, to help fill their larders. They gathered huckleberries and blackberries, grew potatoes, peas, beans, carrots and greens, and kept chickens, pigs and cows. A degree of economic self-sufficiency was a tradition in the county, so when the Depression came and cash was short, many people adapted simply by increasing their reliance on hunting, gathering, gardening and small farming. Some turned huckleberries, peas, eggs and even seaweed into “cash crops.” People adapted in other ways as well. They traded with neighbors and bartered with storekeepers. They bought on credit, sometimes putting up their homes and farms as security. And once they had secured the necessities, they figured out ways to live without cash. Drawing on their reserves of optimism and good humor, they entertained themselves with simple, homegrown pleasures: dances, picnics, baseball games, boxing matches, holiday celebrations, and lots of good talk. Family, friends, neighbors and even strangers found ways to help out.

A chicken ranch near Fort Bragg. In the 1930’s, egg production became a major industry on the Mendocino coast. (H.H. Wonacott, photographer, collection of the Mendocino County Museum, #83-27-1.)

While hunting and gathering was a longstanding tradition among the county’s residents, both white and Indian, the hard times of the Depression heightened people’s awareness of the food that was ripening and quickening in the woods, clearings, streams and coves just outside their doors. Jake Jacobs remembers how it was: “There was ten years that was rough. If somebody saw a deer track they talked about it for weeks, because that meant there was at least one live deer still left in the county. As for the jack rabbits, if they didn’t have the boils, they went into the pot.”… Although hunting laws were enforced, and deer poachers were fined $25 to $50 when caught, people were willing to break the law and risk the consequences in order to feed their families.

Local fowl and fish also went into the pot. “I was an adult before I knew that you didn’t eat robin stew," confesses Carolanne Wuoltee. “I thought everybody ate robin stew because I’d eaten so much of it through the years.” When Francis Jackson and his friends were out of school for the summer and couldn’t find work, they would head into the woods, “trying to get something to eat.”

Another widespread practice was harvesting wild crops for local and distant markets. Seaweed, blackberries, and huckleberries were all marketable commodities, and good sources of income for people who had more time on their hands than cash. Dee Dahl remembers going with her parents to gather seaweed to sell to a Chinese man. Isabel Sanbothe picked blackberries – “the little wild blackberries, not the Himalayas” – and sold them for 25 cents for a six pound Crisco can. It would take her all day to pick three cans of berries, but “in those days 75 cents would buy you a dress.” Blackberries paid for her school clothes.

By far the most important wild crop was huckleberries. “That was a big business,” recalls Emery Escola. “They shipped them by the tons… that’s a lot of huckleberries.” For some people it was the only income they had.

Like hunting and gathering, subsistence farming was a well established tradition in the county, and one that became all the more vital when cash was short and jobs were scarce. Speaking of the small farms along the coastal ridges, Emery Escola recalls that, “each one of these ranches had their chickens, pigs, cows, butter, milk and eggs and the whole works.” Jake Jacobs remembers that there was always some suspense about how much food there would be – “you were always very conscious of how much food there was available to put on the table.” Not only on the farms, but in town as well, people grew and raised at least some of what they put on the table.

While subsistence farming during the 1930s was the continuation of an old tradition, the Depression did produce some agricultural innovations in the country. An innovation on a large scale was pea growing… Pea production employed hundreds in the fields up and down the coast and in the packing shed in Fort Bragg (which later became the Co-op feed warehouse). Peas were grown at the Filosi Ranch at Newport, the Todd Ranch at Noyo, the Hargrave Ranch near Russian Gulch, and all along the coastal plain between Elk and the mouth of the Garcia River. Another important agricultural innovation on the coast during the 1930s was egg production. Of course, eggs had always served as a kind of currency for farm and town folks alike, but in the mid-thirties Mendosa’s and the Fort Bragg Co-op became “poultry producing stations” for the Petaluma Poultry Producers’ Association, and eggs became a cash crop for many coastal residents.

Extensive credit buying was another survival strategy, hard as it was on both buyer and creditor. “Truly there were families in Fort Bragg who could not have survived without the Company Store,” says Carolanne Woultee. John Biaggi remembers that because of the extensive use of credit in Point Arena, “the storekeepers ended up owning an awful lot of real estate.”

People often got by because others lent them a timely hand. “It was neighborly: we helped each other out,” recalls Francis Jackson. When his family was completely broke, out of food, and about to spend a silver dollar that his mother treasured as a keepsake, a bag of groceries appeared on their doorstep.

People maintained a positive outlook and found a variety of ways to pursue the good life with little or no cash, so that while times were hard they were not necessarily bleak or dull. “Everything was jumping even though it was the Depression,” recalls John Biaggi. “People had to live, you know.”

The pea-packing plant in Fort Bragg. Ninety-nine railroad cars of peas were shipped out of here in 1932, as pea growing up and down the coast provided much-needed employment in the early years of the Depression. (H.H. Wonacott, photographer; collection of the Mendocino County Museum, #83-27-1.)

One of the constant themes in the county’s newspapers during the 1930’s was tourism. Early in the decade the promotion of the tourist industry was identified as a way to help the county out of the Depression. In a long article in January, 1932, the Beacon cited a report showing that tourism was actually increasing in northern California even as other sectors of the economy were declining. This report was offered as “proof that the tourist business can be relied upon as a sort of industrial balance wheel when other industries are below normal.” The Board of Supervisors, the chambers of commerce, and the Redwood Empire Association all vigorously promoted tourism, spending precious Depression dollars to prime the pump that would, they hoped, eventually bring in a steady flow of free-spending visitors. They ran ads in newspapers, hustled articles in travel magazines, and even created a travelogue to be exhibited at Exposition Park in Los Angeles during the 1932 Olympics. They lobbied for the Shoreline Highway, the state parks, the CCC camps, and the Mendocino Woodlands. By the end of the decade the results of their efforts were clear: Mendocino County, and in particular the Mendocino Coast, was well on its way to becoming a tourist destination. Motels or “auto courts” had been built at Noyo and Pine Beach. Little River Inn opened for business in 1939. Hendy Woods, Montgomery Woods, and Paul Dimmick state parks had been established, along with Russian Gulch and Van Damme. Although the parks were not heavily used at first and the motels were modest, a new direction had been set for future development.

(Reprinted from Mendocino Historical Research. The complete 48-page booklet, with many period photographs, is for sale at the Kelley House Museum in Mendocino. Phone 707-937-5791. Courtesy, the Mendocino Art Center.)

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GUTLESS WONDERS SAY LATER (Reason 578,987 why the Democrats are half the problem)


“I respect and support Speaker Rendon’s leadership decision to hold SB 562. He had an extremely difficult decision to make, but knew that we were all faced with how to move a bill forward with so many unanswered questions such as financing, delivery of care and costs controls.”

“California has always been a leader in the nation and tackles difficult issues with innovative thinking. Health care for all represents the values of who we are as a state. Senators Ricardo Lara and Toni Atkins, the authors of SB 562, took on a huge challenge, especially given the current turmoil surrounding health care in Washington, DC. We need to recognize the tremendous commitment and work they put into SB 562, and that work absolutely needs to continue.”

“We currently depend on hundreds of billions of dollars in local, state and federal funds to support the health care system we have today. And we have painstakingly watched the daily roller coaster ride of the repeal and replace proposals coming out of the Republican-controlled Congress, and have no idea what amount of federal funding will eventually be made available to us.”

“In SB 562, the Senate has provided a framework for transforming the health care system in California and now they will have the time to address those unanswered questions so that the bill can receive in-depth discussion and a thoughtful analysis by the Assembly. The bill can still move through the process next year once these questions have been answered.”

“As a health care provider, making sure all Californians get the care they need is near and dear to me, and I look forward to working with the Senate as they continue to address the issues and funding challenges that remain in the current version of SB 562.

“Providing health care to all Californians is critical–we just need to take the time to find the right path to get there.”

California Northcoast Assemblyman Jim Wood


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Humboldt County Sheriff Press Release

"On Wednesday 06/28/2017, the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office’s Drug Enforcement Unit (DEU) and the Humboldt County Drug Task Force (DTF) served three search warrants to investigate an allegation of illegal cultivation of marijuana and possession for sales of marijuana. The search warrants were served in the area of Visser Court in McKinleyville and in the area of the Mosquito Creek drainage off of US Forest Service Route 1. The following agencies assisted DEU and DTF in this investigation: Wardens from California Fish and Wildlife, Biologist from California Fish and Wildlife, CAL Fire Law enforcement officers, Investigators from the District Attorney’s Office, specialist from the Humboldt County Environmental Health and HAZMAT Unit, Humboldt County Code Enforcement officers, and personnel from the California Army National Guard Counter Drug Unit.

Drug Task Force served a search warrant on a residential structure on Visser Court. During the course of the investigation, DTF agents arrested Brett Visser (age 58) and Anne Clarke (age 32) for illegal cultivation of marijuana, possession of marijuana for sales, maintaining a structure for distribution/sales, and possession of prescription drugs for sales. The following items of evidence were located and seized:

367 pounds of processed marijuana that was packaged in individual vacuum sealed one pound bags, 6 firearms, 255 Xanax pills and $80,000 in cash.

The investigation on Visser Court led to another parcel near the residence that was under the control of Brett Visser. An additional search warrant was obtained and served on this property. Two structures that were converted into indoor marijuana grow rooms were located on this property. The two indoor marijuana grows were not permitted by Humboldt County Building and Planning Division. 700 growing marijuana plants were located and seized from this property.

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office’s Drug Enforcement Unit responded to two adjacent parcels in the area of the Mosquito Creek drainage that were owned by Brett Visser. DEU located a total of 35 greenhouses containing growing marijuana and 6 indoor marijuana grows on these parcels. A total of 21,389 marijuana plants were eradicated from the properties and 391 pounds of processed marijuana was seized. Several subjects fled upon law enforcements arrival. Two Hispanic subjects were detained and questioned. Both subjects were released after being interviewed. A Commercial Cannabis Permit Application was filed by Brett Visser for these parcels; however, the permit was in a suspension status due to required information being overdue.

California Fish and Wildlife conducted a parallel investigation on these two parcels and discovered 6 separate Stream Bed Alterations, 3 potential water pollution sites due to the location of stored diesel fuel, and 1 Trash in Stream hazard due to the potential of sediment washing into nearby streams. Fish and Wildlife Wardens also found evidence of poaching. Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office 826 Fourth Street, Eureka, CA 95501.

Humboldt County Environmental Health and HAZMAT conducted a parallel investigation and discovered the following violations: Failure to Establish Hazardous Material Business Plan, Failure to Establish Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasure Plan, Failure to Report Threaten Release of Hazardous Material, and Improper Management of Hazardous Material. 13,000 gallons of diesel fuel and two large diesel generators were located on the two parcels.

CAL Fire officers conducted a parallel investigation and discovered the following violations: Operating without a timber operation license, harvesting timber without a harvest plan, and operating without a timber conversion permit.

Humboldt County Code Enforcement officers conducted a parallel investigation and discovered the following violations: Grading without a permit, Construction without a permit, stream side management area violations, solid waste disposal violations, using an RV as a residence, marijuana cultivation ordinance violations.

All criminal violations stemming from the marijuana cultivation investigation will be forwarded to the District Attorney’s office for review. The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office maintains a cooperative relationship with all agencies that participated in this investigation. All future investigations into non-compliant marijuana operations will continue to be investigated in this manner.

Anyone with information for the Sheriff’s Office regarding this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Sheriff’s Office at 707-445- 7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at 707-268- 2539."

UPDATE 3:00 PM: The Sheriff's Office sent an additional statement on Wednesday's raid...

"Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Drug Enforcement Unit began to investigate the legality of the marijuana grow site on the parcels owned by Brett Visser after receiving several complaints. The complaints surrounded illegal marijuana activities occurring on the properties located in the Mosquito Creek drainage off of US Forest Service Route 1. After conducting surveillance, several potential environmental violations were determined to be associated with the large commercial cannabis site which had not yet been issued a Commercial Cannabis permit. After the Commercial Cannabis Application and surveillance information was reviewed, HCSO DEU had reason to believe that Brett Visser was using the Humboldt County Commercial Cannabis Permit process as a cover for trafficking marijuana and that several felony environmental violations were being committed. Evidence located at the scene supports those facts."

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Friday Night in Fort Bragg

Last night I got home about midnight and there was a message on my 30-year-old clockwork answering machine. A stern-sounding woman said, "Hello, this is Agent Morris. I'm looking for Ronald Parker. Ronald Parker, please give me a call at CHHHHGKCHHHH…CHHHHCHHHHH… KHHHCH."

So, Ronald, I guess they're closing in. The ball's in your court.

In other news, tomorrow night (Friday the 30th) I'll be doing my show from Fort Bragg, not by live remote from far away, so if you, Ronald or not, want to come in and play your musical instrument(s) or talk about your project, or whatever, and you're near enough to 325 N. Franklin (next to the Tip Top bar), just waltz in any time after 9pm, head for the lighted room at the back and get my attention away from whatever I'm doing, and we'll go from there.

(If you write something you want me to read aloud on the air, email it to me any time during the week and I'll do that. The deadline is always around 5:30 or 6pm the night of the show. Or bring it with you after nine and read it yourself. Or call it in to 962-3022 during the show, though I haven't fixed the caller interface at the station properly yet, even though I talked about doing it weeks ago. It works but it grates on the nerves.)

Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio.

Every Friday, 9pm to about 4am on 107.7fm KNYO-LP Fort Bragg, including midnight to 3am 105.1fm KMEC-LP Ukiah.

And also there and anywhere else via or

Marco McClean

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Hello to all, I just posted an interview with local journalist Will Parrish who most of you may know from his arrest during the Willits bypass protest. He just got published in The Intercept with a series of articles entitled TigerSwan Tactics about the private military contractor hired by Energy Transfer Partners during Standing Rock. Great conversation, hope you feel like checking it out.

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Bail - $35,000

Age: 35 years old

Height: 6' 1"

Weight: 146 lbs

Hair: Brown

Eyes: Brown

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.

ED NOTE: No sooner was this Wanted Notice posted than Mr. Pratt was arrested and booked Thursday, June 29. (See bookings below.)

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CATCH OF THE DAY, June 29, 2017

Adams, Alvarez, Barriga-Barrera

AMOS ADAMS, Fort Bragg. Disobeying court order/contempt of court, stalking, probation revocation.

JOHN ALVAREZ JR., Clearlake/Ukiah. Probation revocation.

JOSE BARRIGA-BARRERA, Ukiah. Pot possession/transportation for sale, county parole violation.

Hoaglen, Lawrence, Mora

BRETT HOAGLEN, Covelo. Probation revocation.

JESSE LAWRENCE, Potter Valley. Resisting.

LUIS MORA, Ukiah. Pot possession/transportation for sale.

Pratt, Wilhelmi, Witt

JASON PRATT, Fort Bragg. Grand theft, community supervision violation.

JUSTIN WILHELMI, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

KORY WITT, Redwood Valley. Failure to appear.

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by Bill Houston

He was a mean ugly slumlord, pushing 80 with a big chip on his shoulder. Every week he drove his old yellow van into town to pick up groceries that grew rancid on the shelves of his country store in downtown Whitethorn. He also bought hot items from the junkies and thieves, usually paying too much so when the police finally came to shut him down they found thousands of unsellable things stacked and packed into the garage, the back of the store, and in the double wide where he and his wife had to thread their way down the narrow passageway to their bedroom through the pawned contraband. The court let him off without jail time but made him shut down his curdled milk market and forbade any family member to reopen.

He had always been a collector, from Tennessee to South Pasadena to the hills of the Coast Range, electronics his particular passion. Soon after the authorities shut down the illegal pawnshop his double wide burned to the ground after one of his minions tried to thaw out the frozen pipes with a blowtorch. He and his wife moved across the street to the abandoned post office where they lived without a shower for years. His wife was a friendly lady often seen walking her big dogs along the county road. His daughter was sexy big-breasted manic-depressive, a Prozak-munching chain-smoker who frankly couldn't believe he was her father. She'd done a stint minding the store then fled South not looking back. At her used and antique business in the South Bay she often sold hot items he shipped down to her. His son was a huge idiot-savant who found the junkie of his dreams, following her needle to her place by the river. They called her the black widow when more than one boyfriend showed up bloated and floating in the Mattole.

So everyone waited for the old man to die but he wouldn't. Heart worms and heart attacks and heartaches wouldn't bring down the mean ugly slumlord of the one stump town. Sure it was a thankless job collecting rents for the dilapidated cabins that often mysteriously burned down. What seemed like a beautiful meadow by the side of the road was overwhelmed by its lowlife history. When the old slumlord went out to collect rents he took with him the gun which he'd drawn on others before, threatening, keeping his fiefdom under control. One day he arrived at the house where one of his tenants was attempting to add a small addition onto the cabin in lieu of rent. No way said the slumlord and when the renter tried to argue he shot him in the back. The police came, listened to the slumlord's lies, and believed that maybe it was self-defense against a young unarmed man. The neighbors were kind of surprised to see him driving around in his van the next day, and not arrested.

The gunshot victim eventually recovered and sued the slumlord for wrongful assault. Within a few years he ended up owning that disreputable meadow, once called Living Waters when the Jesus freaks took over for a spell. The old man withered under the strain of the court battle, everyone was glad to see him go, justice was done—there was a new slumlord now.

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(Photo by Ben Anderson)

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August 1982 — Mexico City: sunny Sunday morning. A woman in a red sweatshirt and running shoes is clipping her poodle pup on a stone bench on the Paseo de la Reforma. She finishes and puts the poodle down on the ground where the pup’s legs start going like a mechanical toy, but she holds it, and then seems to crank its tail as if to wind it up. Then the little white dog scampers away under the little trees with their trunks painted white—aspens and birches maybe five years old. A short bald man in dark glasses comes over from where he was lying down with a newspaper over his face on the grass and engages her in conversation about the dog. It seems he is extremely interested in this dog, the like of which he has never seen before on earth. The dog wants to be picked up, not the woman who holds the clipping scissors in her hand and slowly opens and closes them as she looks at the man. After a while she reaches up and scissors a hole in his crotch. His nuts drop and roll away on the grass like balls in a pinball machine. They careen against a curb and ricochet down the Avenida de la Reforma, bowling over the late morning traffic. Each time a ball hits a car a red signal lights up. After a few seconds the balls fall back down the Avenida and come to rest in the little dog’s kennel. The woman picks them up and plants them in the lawn under the trees. After a while another tree with a white trunk springs up from each nut. The dog scampers about under them and pees on their white trunks. The lady is about to mount her white horse and ride away but she cannot catch the dog. The dog keeps circling the trees in a figure eight, barking like mad. The trees grow up, the dog and the lady grow old, the sun and the moon rise and set a million times over the ancient lake of Tenochtitlán. When the lady is an old crone on the bench and the dog lies under a tree like a heap of uncombed wool, another man approaches from under the newspaper where he has been lying. The scene begins again in macho Mexico, and the lady is the eternal curandera who will cure modern man with her powerful spells.

— Lawrence Ferlinghetti

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I COULD FEEL A DEEP COLD slowly climbing

my legs, which wouldn’t move, my eyes

began to itch and blink on a darkness

I had never seen before. I knew

these tiny glazed pictures—a car hood,

my own speedometer, the steering wheel,

the windshield fogging over—were the last

I’d ever see. These places where I had lived

all the days of my life were giving up

their hold on me and not a moment too soon.

— Philip Levine

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Mendocino County Green Party is being revived from the ashes of the past. Now is the time for you to join the momentum toward a progressive and Green political future. Come join us on Sunday, July 16th, from 2pm to 5pm at Frankie’s Ice Cream and Pizza Cafe, 44591 Ukiah St., Mendocino. Hope to see you there! For more information: 707-937-1372, email:

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Notice of AQUATIC PLANT MANAGEMENT Activities in Clear Lake

LAKE COUNTY, CA — In order to support beneficial uses of Clear Lake, the Lake County Department of Water Resources is providing defined areas around the lake free of noxious plants. The areas include certain:

Shoreline lanes parallel to the shoreline, starting from lakeward ends of structures in the lake and extending 50 - 100 feet lakeward;

100 foot-wide boat lanes perpendicular to the shoreline, starting from the shoreline lane and extending for 1,000 feet to 2,000 feet into the lake. Boat lanes will be marked with green and red buoys to be used with the 3R rule of boating – Red, Right, Return.

Recreational areas for swimming or fishing.

The specific treatment areas are posted on the County’s website at Your property may be close to one of these managed areas. Management of aquatic plants entails use of aquatic herbicides. If you use lake water for irrigation or personal use, please call Water Resources at 263-2344 or email to find out about water use restrictions during the treatment.

All aquatic plant management in Clear Lake requires a permit; only licensed aquatic herbicide applicators are authorized to chemically control weeds in Clear Lake. Permits may be obtained from the Lake County Water Resources Office.

For additional information pertaining to County of Lake aquatic plant management activities please visit or contact the Water Resources Department at 263-2344.

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Annie Baker's Pulitzer Prize-winning play THE FLICK<> continues this weekend at the Mendocino Theatre Company, with performances on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 2pm.

Tickets are available online at or by phoning 707-937-4477. This is what audience members are saying about the production:

"It brought back memories of being young and how the young stumble through their challenges together. I found myself sharing those memories with others in the audience at intermission." –Lynn S.

"I saw The Flick for the third time - and I plan to go once more. I can’t get over what an outstanding production it is!" –Julie B.

“We all agreed that the set was great, the lighting was really good and the play itself was very entertaining, but it was the acting we talked about all the way home." –Lynn C.

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Visit Mendocino County (VMC), the consumer-facing arm of the Mendocino County Tourism Commission, is pleased to announce this year’s countywide Mushroom Wine & Beer Festival will take place November 3 through 12. While mushrooms, wine and beer will remain vital components, 2017’s festival will add new themes to this longstanding event: Foraging of Wild Edibles (such as seaweeds, nettles, and nuts) and Fermentation (from cheeses to kombucha to cider and beyond). The festival name and logo will stay the same, but the offerings will be broader and more exciting than before.

As in years past, VMC is asking businesses and organizations countywide to create events and activities, lodging specials and dining extravaganzas, that not only their neighbors can enjoy, but also will provide visitors a unique Mendocino County experience.

The target deadline for entries is August 1, 2017. VMC’s events brochure and marketing efforts will be based on the information submitted to VMC by participants. To be included in this year’s festival or for more information, contact VMC’s event coordinator Luz Harvey at (707) 964-9010.

* * *


* * *


Investors and tourists are taking new interest in the tiny Mendocino County town as it rebuilds and refurbishes.

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FOUR YEARS TO SAVE THE EARTH: 2020 is the deadline to avert climate catastrophe, experts claim in chilling commentary

A world that heats up beyond that threshold will face a crescendo of devastating impacts ranging from deadly heatwaves to mass migration caused by rising seas, the experts warned in a commentary published in the science journal Nature.

With 1.0 degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming so far, ice sheets that could lift oceans by a dozen metres are melting more quickly, coral reefs are dying from heat stress, and ever more damaging storm surges are hammering coastal communities.

The transition to cleaner energy sources is well underway and is backed by broad consensus on the need to beat back the threat of climate change—with the notable exception of the United States under President Donald Trump.

After rising for decades, global emissions of carbon dioxide driven by the burning of fossil fuels have levelled off during the last two years at about 41 billion tonnes per year.

But even at this rate the planet's 'carbon budget'—the amount of CO2 that can be released into the atmosphere without crossing the 2.0 Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) red line—would be used up within a couple of decades, perhaps sooner.

'There is a long way to go to decarbonise the world economy,' according to the commentary signed by former UN climate chief Christiana Figueres, three top climate scientists, and two sustainability experts from the business sector.

'When it comes to climate, timing is everything,' they wrote.

The authors called on leaders set to gather at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, on July 7-8 to highlight 2020 as a make-or-break point for taking action.

But after Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, signed by 196 parties, and his refusal to join a climate consensus at a G7 summit in late May, such an outcome seems doubtful.

A number of benchmarks should be met by 2020, according to the commentary.

Renewable energy—mainly wind and solar—must make up at least 30 percent of the world's electricity supply, it said. Moreover, no additional coal-fired power plants should be approved after that date.

The rise in global sea levels has accelerated since the 1990s amid rising temperatures, according to a new study.

The annual rate of sea level rise has increased by 50 per cent to 3.3 millimetres each year in 2014 from 2.2 millimetres each year in 1993.

Researchers hope the findings will act as a 'major warning' about the dangers of sea level rise for centuries if global warming isn't stopped.

Sea levels have risen by about 20 centimetres in the past century and many scientific studies project a steady acceleration this century as man-made global warming melts more ice on land.

Early satellite data had exaggerated the rate of sea level rise in the 1990s, masking the recent acceleration.

A thaw of Greenland's ice sheet accounted for more than 25 per cent of the sea level rise in 2014 against just five per cent in 1993.

Other big sources include loss of glaciers from the Himalayas to the Andes, Antarctica's ice sheet and a natural expansion of ocean water as it warms up from its most dense at 4°C (39.2°F).

In the transport sector, electric vehicles—which currently represent one percent of new car sales—should account for 15 percent of the market by that date.

Governments should also require a 20 percent improvement in fuel efficiency for heavy-duty vehicles, and a 20 percent drop in carbon dioxide pollution per kilometre travelled in the aviation sector.

Still climbing sharply, CO2 from the aviation industry account for about two percent of all human-generated emissions.

Greenhouse gases from deforestation and agriculture, currently about 12 percent of the global total, must be cut to zero within a decade, the experts wrote.

They also called for concrete measures to curb carbon emitted by heavy industry, as well as by buildings and infrastructure.

Finally, governments and banks must ramp up by tenfold the amount of 'green bonds' used to finance CO2-cutting measures, currently about $81 billion (71 billion euros.)

* * *


Archery update: Archery is coming people if we want it bad enough.

We need to make a little bit more noise and let some people know that we need a facility. I've got my bow ready. 40 years ago.

After I heard people in Mendo were interested in learning and practicing archery I put out the call for my old gear. And that call was answered. The bow wad found. It was located across hundreds of miles and years and years and a divorce.

If I can find that Bow we can make this happen. Good day all. Thank you for your time.

Andrew Scully

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* * *


Obamacare may be the “law of the land” but, it is bad law. It fulfills the neocon ideology of privatized rackets to perfection. It fulfills the psychosis of the HMO Act of 1973 to perfection. Medical care, instead of being a dividend of modern progress, has become a commodity. A racket priced so high that it forces consumers into slave-like dependency on the Feds for subsidies via the IRS. Obamacare is a Republican neocon monstrosity, albeit rebranded by Obama. Nothing less than Medicare For All will work. Start off with removing the FICA income tax ceiling and redirect existing subsidies into Medicare For All. Now the program can stand-alone without requiring mandatory participation as in Obamacare. Eventually, the main funding mechanism must be a full 1% Wall Street Sales Tax (including trading on LaSalle St.). If Goldman Sachs can do thousands of flash trades a second, GREAT! ONE PERCENT OFF THE FUCKING TOP EVERY G-D TIME! Let there be no sympathy for losses on razor-thin trades. MFA can be offered at the basic rate of $100/month per person with affordable deductibles (means tested). MFA puts medical care back under the pre-HMO ideology of the New Deal. Which asserts that public health is found under the “General Welfare” clause of the Constitution. A Public Good instead of a siege engine to extract profits for wealthy rent seekers and hedge fund hyenas.

* * *


Californians will no longer face losing their driver's licenses because of unpaid traffic fines starting next month. Gov. Jerry Brown said the punishment doesn't help the state collect unpaid fines and can send low-income people into a cycle of job losses and more poverty. The policy will help ensure people's lives are not derailed by traffic tickets, said Sen. Bob Hertzberg, a Van Nuys Democrat who has championed the issue in the Legislature. Brown, a Democrat, approved the provision as part of a series of bills he signed Tuesday to enact the state budget. It will prevent courts from suspending someone's driver's license simply because of unpaid fines. Brown called for ending the practice in his January budget proposal, saying "there does not appear to be a strong connection" between the license suspensions and collecting. "Often, the primary consequence of a driver's license suspension is the inability to legally drive to work or take one's children to school," the Democratic governor wrote. In March, about 488,000 people had suspended driver's licenses for unpaid traffic tickets or missing court appearances, according to data from the California Department of Motor Vehicles. Opponents of the policy have argued driver's license suspension is a useful tool to compel people to pay traffic fines. Supporters say losing the ability to drive to work can prevent people from earning money and actually make low-income drivers less likely to pay fines. Under the bill Brown signed, courts will still be able to suspend licenses for other infractions like failing to appear in court. Hertzberg said the new policy is a good first step in changing state law so it doesn't punish people for being poor. He has a related bill advancing through the Legislature that would allow low-income people who cannot afford their traffic tickets to ask a judge to lower fines or substitute them with community service.

(Associated Press)

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(Caltrans Press Release)

Route 1 (33.9/44.3) – Caltrans will perform routine maintenance from Philo-Greenwood Road to Albion beginning Wednesday, July 5. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate 10-minute delays.

Route 1 (77.7) – Emergency work north of the Westport North Bridge will continue. One-way traffic control will be in effect 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 1 (78.8/83.3) – Emergency storm damage repairs south of the Wages Creek Bridge will continue. One-way traffic control will be in effect 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 101 (4.5/5.0) – Routine maintenance near Frog Woman Rock will continue. Northbound traffic will be restricted to one lane 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate minor traffic slowdowns.

Route 101 (39.0/40.0) – Emergency work near Ridgewood Ranch Road will continue. Lane closures will be in effect from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate minor traffic slowdowns.

Route 101 (41.2/44.0) – Bridge repairs at the Haehl Overhead Bridge will continue. A southbound lane closure will be in effect at all hours. Motorists should anticipate minor traffic slowdowns.

Route 101 (63.5/82.5) – Emergency pavement repairs from Long Valley Creek to the Empire Camp Rest Area will continue. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. Monday evening through Saturday morning. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 101 (84.7/88.8) – Emergency work near Hermitage Vista Point will continue. One-way traffic control will be in effect 24 hours a day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 10-minute delays.

Route 101 (97.1) – Emergency slide removal near the Dora Creek Bridge will continue. One-way traffic control will be in effect 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 20-minute delays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, and 15-minute delays at other times.

Route 101 (103.8/105.4) – Emergency slide removal near Piercy will continue. Traffic will be reduced to one lane in both directions 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Motorists should anticipate minor traffic slowdowns.

Route 128 (23.8/25.3) – AT&T has been granted a Caltrans Encroachment Permit for utility work from Philo to Anderson Valley Way through Friday, June 30. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 128 (39.5) – Roadway repairs west of Yorkville will continue. One-way traffic control with a temporary traffic signal will be in effect 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays

Route 162 (7.1/17.5) – Storm damage repairs from Bloody Run Creek to Hosea Creek will continue through Friday, June 30. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 162 (22.7) – Emergency storm damage repairs near Sand Bank Creek will continue. One-way traffic control with a temporary traffic signal will be in effect 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 162 (23.0/25.3) – Storm damage repairs south of Pookiny will continue through Friday, June 30. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays.

Route 175 (5.6/9.9) – Emergency storm damage repairs at various locations from 1.7 miles east of Buckman Drive to the Lake/Mendocino County line will continue. One-way traffic control with a temporary traffic signal will be in effect 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Motorists should anticipate 30-minute delays.

Route 253 (1.2/2.0) – Highway repairs near Singley Cattlepass will continue. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate 15-minute delays.

Route 271 (0.0/3.5) – Pavement repairs from Cummings to Grizzley Creek will begin continue through Friday, June 30. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. Motorists should anticipate 10-minute delays.

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by Dan Bacher

As most of you know, I have been extremely passionate for many years about the need to get Big Oil out of California politics, ranging from the Governor’s Office, to the Legislature, to marine protection and other coastal protection panels.

I have written scores of articles exposing how oil companies and the Western States Petroleum Association, the most powerful oil lobbying group in Sacramento, have captured the regulatory apparatus from top to bottom.

Fortunately, increasing numbers of Californians are waking up to the inordinate role that Big Oil plays in California, a state that has ironically been portrayed as the nation’s “green leader” by the mainstream media.

On May 20, a new grassroots group, Oil Money Out, held a successful march and in Sacramento to protest the huge role that Big Oil has in California politics — and to urge elected officials and candidates to refuse to take money from oil industry.

Will you make the call? Click here:

One of the highlights of the event was when a creative group of activists held a mock “tug of war’” between the people of California and the oil industry for the loyalty of Governor Jerry Brown in front of the Sacramento Convention Center where the Democratic Convention was being held that day,

On the left, people pulled an activist wearing a giant papier mache Jerry Brown “head” towards them with the rope. Then others representing oil industry executives, dressed in white shirts and gray ties right next to a big oil barrel emblazoned with “Big Oil $,” tugged “Jerry Brown” in their direction. The “tug of war” took place for around 20 minutes, with neither side winning.

The skit depicted the contradiction between Jerry Brown the “climate leader,” who appeals to his Democratic base by preaching against climate change and for green energy, and the other guy, “Big Oil Brown,” who supports the expansion of fracking in California and the construction of the Delta Tunnels — and has received millions in contributions from the oil and energy industries.

But the tug of war was over more than just over the loyalty of Jerry Brown, torn between the people and the oil industry. It was, on a deeper level, about California’s contradictory role as an “environmental leader” with some good laws, on one hand, and then its role as the nation’s third biggest oil producer, with some of the dirtiest air and waterways in the country, on the other hand. You can read a photo essay about the event here:

“The event was a huge success, and already we're hearing that our legislators are getting the message that Californians want oil money out of politics," said David Braun, Rootskeeper for #OilMoneyOut, in an action alert Wednesday.

“And they're beginning to get the message that there is science on the books which was paid for by California Taxpayers which shows how oil operations - including urban drilling and using oil wastewater to irrigate crops - are often toxic. These scientists even made recommendations to protect Californians from these practices, but meanwhile the oil industry spent $36 million last year lobbying our state leaders to ensure that their toxic enterprise continues,” said Braun

“This week, we are doubling down and hosting a Week of Action to generate calls to our elected officials in California to urge them to stop taking money from Big Oil! Today and throughout the rest of the week, we are asking you to call Governor Jerry Brown and your state legislators to tell them to stop taking dirty oil money," Braun urged.

Will you make the call? Click here:

In another action alert issued today, RL Miller, Chair of the Environmental Caucus of the California Democratic Party and President of Climate Hawks Vote Political Action, pointed out the contradiction between Jerry Brown, “climate leader," and Jerry Brown, "the stenographer for Chevron,” as revealed in an In These Times EXCLUSIVE: Leaked Documents Show Jerry Brown Giving Big Oil a Seat in Drafting Climate Policy.

Brown, who has received over $9.8 million in contributions for oil companies and the energy industry, has become infamous for his close relationship to Big Oil and for the many fossil fuel industry folks that he has appointed to key staff and regulatory panel positions since he began his third term as governor in January 2011.

In the hard-hitting alert, Miller wrote:

“Governor Jerry Brown has spent his last few weeks flying around the world and collecting accolades for his climate activism, but at home he’s been working to undercut a state bill to improve and extend California’s landmark climate law - by using Chevron’s wish list .

Yep. California’s climate leader is acting as the stenographer for Chevron.

I couldn’t believe it myself until I pieced it all together. I got hold of the wish list put together by Latham and Watkins, the expensive law firm working for Western States Petroleum Association (mostly, Chevron) for tweaking reforms to California’s landmark climate law, AB32, which expires in 2020. WSPA wants to extend the program only ten years to 2030, keep the allowances cheap at $12-50/ton (and even continue to give away some free allowances), bar local air districts from creating greenhouse gas regulations for local air quality tougher than California state regulations, and make it easier for polluters to buy offsets out of state. Oh, and they’d include detailed monitoring of toxins at refineries and other large polluters so that (mostly poor minority) people would know just how much deadly crap they breathe in every day. 

Meanwhile, state senate Pro Tem Kevin DeLeon and state senator Bob Wieckowski introduced SB 775 to bring real reform to carbon pricing: require California refineries to clean up their pollution at home, end the scandalous practice of buying carbon offsets far offshore, set a more realistic market for carbon (up to $120/ton), no free allowances to pollute, and a climate dividend for every California resident.

So what does climate hero Gov. Jerry Brown do? He ignores SB 775 and the science behind it, refuses to talk with its authors, and circulates his own proposals, which I also have: extend the program only to 2030, keep the allowances cheap at $12-63/ton (and even continue to give away some free allowances), bar local air districts from creating greenhouse gas regulations for local air quality tougher than California state regulations, and make it easier for polluters to buy offsets out of state. Oh, and he includes detailed monitoring of toxins at refineries and other large polluters so that (mostly poor minority) people would know just how much deadly crap they breathe in every day.

You see how that works?

California deserves better than a governor acting as the oil industry’s stenographer on California’s landmark climate initiative.”

Action Alert - Click here to tell Gov. Jerry Brown: Stop acting as Chevron's stenographer in negotiating climate laws. 

Below is some background information on how Big Oil has become such a powerful force in California politics. I urge you to read this, if you’re not already aware of this alarming information.

This is a revised transcript of a speech I gave at the end of the Changefest rally held on the north steps of the State Capitol on January 21 and at a Sacramento Climate Coalition meeting in Sacramento on February 4:

Background: California oil lobby tops spending in 2015-16 session with $36.1 million 

In spite of California's reputation as a "green leader, Big Oil is the largest corporate lobby in the state and exerts enormous influence over the Governor's Office, Legislature and regulatory agencies.

As usual, the California Oil Lobby was the biggest spender in the 2015-16 legislative session, spending an amazing $36.1 million as of December 31, 2016.

The spending amounts to $1.5 million per month — nearly $50,000 per day — over the last two years. The $36.1 million surpassed the $34 million spent in the prior session, according to an American Lung Association report. “That’s enough money to buy 103,000 goats,” reported Stop Fooling California,

The Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA) was the top overall oil industry spender during the 2015-16 session, spending $18.7 million. As is normally the case, WSPA ranked #1 among all lobbying spenders this session.

Chevron, the second overall oil industry spender, spent $7 million in the 2015-16 session. It spent $3 million in 2016, sixth among all lobbyists in the current session.

In the seventh quarter alone, WSPA dumped $2.6 million into lobbying legislators and state officials while billionaire Tom Steyer's Next Generation Climate Action spent an unprecedented $7.3 million, almost 3 times the oil industry group’s expenses.

The spending by Steyer’s group helped propel the passage of Senate Bill 32, legislation that reduces greenhouse gas level to 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030, in spite of strong opposition by the oil industry.

Since the 2007-08 Session, the oil industry has spent $133 million in lobbying in California.

To read the complete report, go to:;

Western States Petroleum Association: Sacramento's most powerful corporate lobbying group

Although the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA) is the largest and most powerful corporate lobbying group in the West and California, its enormous influence appears to be one of our state’s best-kept secrets. It has spent more than other lobbying organization in Sacramento in recent years to exert control over the Governor’s Office, regulatory agencies and the State Legislature.

Big Oil, along with Big Ag, Big Pharma, Big Timber and other corporate interests, dominate politics in California, as well as in Washington, D.C., as evidenced by President's Donald Trump’s nomination of EXXON CEO Rex Tilleson as Secretary of State, Scott Pruitt as EPA Administrator, and other oil and energy corporation shills to his cabinet. The appointment of oil industry officials and their allies to California regulatory panels has been standard practice in California for many years.

The Western States Petroleum Association is a “non-profit trade association” that represents companies that account for the bulk of petroleum exploration, production, refining, transportation and marketing in the five western states of California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, and Nevada.

WSPA’s membership includes a who’s who oil, energy and pipeline corporations including Aera Energy LLC, Chevron, Californian Resources Corporation (formerly Occidental Petroleum), ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Noble Energy, Inc., Phillips 66, Plains All American, Inc. Shell Oil Products US, Tesoro Refining and Marketing and Valero.

From January 1, 2009 to November 8, 2016 alone, the oil industry spent $112,371,214 on lobbying expenses in California, according to a report, “The Chevron Way: Polluting California and Degrading Democracy.” The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) Sydney Office produced the report, in collaboration with a coalition of conservation, consumer and environmental justice groups.

The Western States Petroleum Association led the oil industry lobbying expenses with $49,491,104 during this period, followed by Chevron with $24,035,901 and Phillips 66 with $4,821,144. For more information, go to:

The five ways Big Oil exerts its influence

WSPA and Big Oil use their money and power in 5 ways: through (1) lobbying; (2) campaign spending; (3) getting appointed to positions on and influencing regulatory panels; (4) creating Astroturf groups: and (5) working in collaboration with media.

Big Oil and other corporate advocates have dominated appointments to Commissions and regulatory panels in California under Governors Gray Davis, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jerry Brown, ranging from the Department of Conservation, to the California Public Utilities Commission, to the California Energy Commission, to the Marine Life Protection Act Initiative Blue Ribbon Task Force.

In a classic case of the “fox guarding the hen house, Catherine Reheis-Boyd, President of the Western States Petroleum Association, chaired the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Blue Ribbon Task Forces to create faux “marine protected areas” in Southern California from 2009 to 2012 at the same the oil industry was fracking South Coast ocean waters. Reheis-Boyd, appointed by Schwarzenegger, also served on the task forces for the Central Coast, North Central Coast, and North Coast from 2004 to 2012.

It gets worse. Reheis-Boyd’s husband, James D. Boyd, first appointed by Governor Davis, sat on on the California Energy Commission from 2002 to 2012, including serving as Vice-Chair of the Commission from 2/2007 to 1/2012.

The California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) in September 2016 opened an investigation into the California Democratic Party in response to a report by a prominent consumer group, Consumer Watchdog, claiming that the party acted as a “laundry machine” to funnel donations from oil, energy and utility companies to Brown’s 2014 election campaign.

In the "Brown's Dirty Hands" report, Consumer Watchdog revealed that that twenty-six energy companies including the state’s three major investor-owned utilities, Occidental, Chevron, and NRG—all with business before the state—donated $9.8 million to Jerry Brown’s campaigns, causes, and initiatives, and to the California Democratic Party since he ran for Governor for his third term. Donations were often made within days or weeks of winning favors. The three major investor-owned utilities alone contributed nearly $6 million

"Occidental’s attorney, former Governor Gray Davis, successfully pressured Brown to fire two oil and gas regulators who wouldn’t grant oil waste injection permits without proof that aquifers would not be contaminated," according to the group. "Two months later, when Brown’s new interim oil and gas supervisor granted Occidental a permit without an environmental review, Occidental contributed $250,000 to Prop 30, Brown’s ballot measure to raise taxes, then another $100,000 two weeks later to his favored Oakland Military Institute. Seven months later, Occidental made a second $250,000 donation to Prop 30."

You can download "Brown's Dirty Hands" at:

More recently on February 6, twelve public interest groups, led by Consumer Watchdog and Food & Water Watch, unveiled a comprehensive report card on the Brown Administration’s environmental record revealing that he falls short in six out of seven key areas, including fossil fuel generated electricity, oil drilling, and coastal protection. Read the report “How Green Is Jerry Brown?” at:

There is no doubt that Big Oil and other corporate interests dominate politics in California and Washington — and that we must relentlessly work to get Big Oil out of politics by supporting efforts like the Move to Amend,, and the California Clean Money Campaign,



  1. LouisBedrock June 30, 2017

    Monika Fuchs,

    I like dogs, cats, and children.
    However I prefer to not having them around when I eat.
    Don’t want them near my food or in my kitchen.

  2. Harvey Reading June 30, 2017

    Re: “Considering American society in general is going to hell in a handbasket…”

    Hah. “American society” has never amounted to much to begin with, except for the wealthy and, to a lesser degree the middle class, which wasn’t hurt by the Great Depression to the extent suffered by the Working Class. The two former groups are still riding high. For the majority, the Working Class, it’s been the pits, literally, excepting for a brief period, from about the end of the second war to the mid 70s, when wages once again plummeted and the right wing (including democwaps) started seriously chipping away at the gains workers had obtained during the 30s, 40s, and 50s (which chipping away began in the late 40s with passage of the Taft-Hartley Act, over Truman’s veto, though he was soon happy to use it against workers).

  3. Harvey Reading June 30, 2017

    Love the table on shooting statistics. Watch out, though, the NRA gonna getcha.

  4. Harvey Reading June 30, 2017

    From St. Clair’s piece on the Counterpunch web site, today.

    “+ A statistical analysis by the Princeton University’s Gerrymandering Project found the extreme Republican advantages in some states are the product of cravenly manufactured districts, designed to insure GOP wins. For example, the Republican advantage in Michigan’s state House districts had a 1-in-16,000 probability of occurring by chance; in Wisconsin’s Assembly districts, there was a only 1-in-60,000 chance of it happening randomly. Now, that’s power politics at work.”

    A course, democwaps do it, too, maybe, just maybe, to a lesser degree. Nah, they are just as bad I’m sure in states where they run things. Plus, the ‘cwaps have “super” delegates. Two sides of the same coin our “two” party system is.

  5. Lazarus June 30, 2017

    This CalTrans business just goes on and on, they cut down the beloved Cork Oaks in Willits… unannounced…folks are really pissed, with the exception of the CalTrans lovers that is, that bunch in Willits known as the “Acceptors”…
    And then there’s this double the money deal for the Willits bypass. Like I said earlier, MCOG could be on the hook for 15% of those extra millions. It seems to me that would really screw the pouch fiscally for the county.
    I wonder if Mendo gets to pay for the part that fell down…? Never saw anything cleaned up so quick.
    As always,

  6. Harvey Reading June 30, 2017

    From “Beyond Inauthentic Opposition” by Paul Street, on the Counterpunch web site today.

    “A recent Harvard University survey finds that 51 percent than half of U.S. Millennials (18-to-29-year-olds) “do not support capitalism,” intimately related to Harvard’s finding that half of the cohort thinks “the American Dream is dead” for them.”

    And people disparage the younger generation. Hell, they’re 10 times smarter than the average yuppie, and they know more, too. I find them a delight and am as proud of them as I am ashamed of fascists and yuppies and the democwapic party(forgive the redundancy).

  7. Craig Stehr June 30, 2017

    The world? Moonlit
    Drops shaken
    From the crane’s bill.

    ~Dogen (1200-1253)

    • LouisBedrock June 30, 2017

      The world? Best part
      Of it ran down
      Its father’s leg.

      Bedrock (1945-?)

      • Harvey Reading June 30, 2017

        Amen. Praise Allah.

  8. scott perkins June 30, 2017

    I am curious about the motivation to post the Eliot poem. I’ve always loved it, but found myself to be unique in that regard.

    Garrison Keillor on Prufrock:

    “The prime minister of high culture was T.S. Eliot, who suffered from a lousy marriage and hated his job and so wrote “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” a small, dark mopefest of a poem in which old Pru worries about whether to eat a peach or roll up his trousers. This poem pretty much killed off the pleasure of poetry for millions of people who got dragged through it in high school. The first line of “Prufrock,” as you may recall, was “S’io credesse che mia risposta fosse” — he opened with six lines of a language 99 percent of his readers do not understand! How better to identify yourself as a serious poet than to be incomprehensible?”

    I think the poem is better heard than read, so thank you for linking to a site with a recording. However, you can find audio of Eliot reading his poem on YouTube. For me, that’s the quintessential version.

    • LouisBedrock June 30, 2017


      Yesterday fellow commenter and fellow poetry lover, Mr. Bill Pilgrim, cited the following lines in a comment for MCT,

      “I grow old … I grow old …
 I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled.”

      This inspired me to find the poem—one of my favorites, and read it and listen to it. I sent the link to Mr. Anderson, who included it in today’s MCT.

      I hope Garrison Keillor was just being ironic.

      Translation of the beginning lines, as you probably know, is:

      “If I thought that my reply would be to someone who would ever return to earth, this flame would remain without further movement; but as no one has ever returned alive from this gulf, if what I hear is true, I can answer you with no fear of infamy.”

        • scott perkins July 6, 2017

          Thank you for the context!

          I remember reading something about video links being forbidden, but figured the industrious among us could find it if interested.

          Back to measuring out my life in coffee spoons…

  9. james marmon June 30, 2017


    Each year dozens of Mendocino County children are adopted out and never heard of again. Once children leave the system they are often “re-homed” without court involvement. No one tracks these kids, my group just found 4 of them in Montana.

    Child Welfare and Human Trafficking

    “The growing awareness of human trafficking in the United States and abroad requires government and human services agencies to rethink old policies and develop new ones for identifying and serving victims. Child welfare agencies are on the front lines of these changes: Children and youth involved with the child welfare system due to abuse or neglect and then placed in foster care or group homes—as well as youth who are involved with the justice system, are homeless, or have run away—are all at high risk of being trafficked. Often, the lack of stability in their living situation, physical distance from friends and family, and emotional vulnerability put them at risk for traffickers who are actively seeking children and teens to exploit.”

    • james marmon June 30, 2017

      California Bill would Outlaw “Rehoming” of Adopted Children

      “California may soon enact legislation to protect children from being moved from one adoptive family to another without legal oversight. The practice, known as “rehoming,” has been found to expose adopted children to abuse and has highlighted loopholes in the U.S.’ child welfare system.

      Introduced last February, California Senate Bill 1040 amends the state’s family and penal codes to provide pre- and post-adoption services to families, and to make what is called an “unregulated custody transfer” a criminal offense punishable with up to one year of prison and/or a fine of $1,000.

      It also criminalizes the act of advertising children for unregulated transfer and requires the state Department of Social Services to convene a working group to address the lack of services available to families with internationally adopted children.”

      Also see:

  10. BB Grace June 30, 2017

    Anyone get Feinstein’s latest email? How about this part:

    “Feinstein Slams Chinese Newspaper for Threatening UCSD, Chancellor (June 22, 2017)

    “I find it unconscionable that a reporter for the Global Times, a mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party, would threaten UC San Diego and its chancellor and students for inviting the Dalai Lama to speak.” To read the full statement, CLICK HERE”

    Brown was just in Communist China selling Californians deeper into debt slavery while Feinstein is resisting Trump by stalling:

    Feinstein on Vote Postponement: ‘The Fight Isn’t Over’ (June 27, 2017)

    “It’s now clear that Republicans don’t have the votes to pass their terrible health care bill, but the fight isn’t over. Senator McConnell said he’ll continue to try to strike a deal, which is why Democrats will continue to fight against this legislation. No amount of tinkering will change the fact that this bill would devastate health care in America, and we can’t let that happen.” To see the press release, CLICK HERE.”

    If you’re subscribed to Judicial Watch, Tom Fitton says:

    “Congress is violating Obamacare to get taxpayers to pay for its health insurance. If the Trump administration required Congress to follow the law, taxpayers would be saving money, pure and simple. We hope the Trump administration will end this clear violation of law by Congress.

    Do you wonder why it’s so hard for your representatives in Congress to find a way to keep their promise to repeal Obamacare, which has proved a disaster for hundreds of thousands of Americans? Perhaps it’s because they have a sweetheart deal they don’t want to lose.

    Judicial Watch previously uncovered false applications filed by the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate with the D.C. Exchange Authority showing that the House and Senate claimed to have only 45 employees each. They also show that the House and Senate attested to having “50 or fewer full-time equivalent employees.” Congress employs upwards of 20,000 people. The applications also falsely state that the House and Senate are “local/state governments.”

    We are also leading the challenge to the unlawful Obamacare subsidies for Congress through a taxpayer lawsuit against the DC government agency that is helping Congress violate the law. The case is currently before the D.C. Court of Appeals.

    Now we are officially requesting that the Trump administration stop members of Congress and their staffs from unlawfully purchasing, with taxpayer subsidies, health insurance through the District of Columbia’s small business exchange. We made our request on June 14, 2017, to the Centers for Medicare Medicaid Services (CMS) as part of a process set out by the Department of Health and Human Services to reform the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), otherwise known as Obamacare.

    We wrote:

    The ACA requires states to create at least two exchanges: a small business exchange (referred to as “SHOP” in the ACA) and an individual exchange. It also requires certain members of Congress and congressional employees to purchase insurance on an exchange created either by their state of residence (or by the District, if they are a D.C. resident) or by the federal government, if their state of residence did not establish an exchange. 42 U.S.C. § 18032(d)(3)(D)(i). Because the ACA limits the purchase of insurance on a small business exchange to employees of small businesses – and Congress is not a small business – the ACA unequivocally requires that certain members of Congress and congressional employees purchase insurance on an individual exchange created either by their state of residence (or by the District, if they are a D.C. resident) or by the federal government for that state.

    Nonetheless, OPM promulgated 5 C.F.R. § 890.102(c)(9), which purportedly authorized congressional employees to purchase health insurance offered by an appropriate small business exchange, and the OPM Director subsequently issued guidance stating, “OPM has determined that the DC SHOP . . . is the appropriate SHOP from which Members of Congress and designated congressional staff will purchase health insurance in order to receive a Government contribution.” Federal Employees Health Benefits Program: Members of Congress and Congressional Staff, 78 Fed. Reg. 60653, 60654 (Oct. 2, 2013).

    Similarly, CMS issued guidance stating, “Consistent with the OPM rule, this guidance clarifies that offices of the Members of Congress are considered qualified employers eligible to offer coverage to Members and designated Congressional staff through the appropriate SHOP as determined by OPM. CMS clarifies that offices of the Members of Congress, as qualified employers, are eligible to participate in a SHOP regardless of the size and offering requirements set forth in the definition of “qualified employer” in the Exchange final rule, provided that the office offers coverage to those full-time employees who are determined by statute to purchase health insurance from an Exchange for the purpose of the government contribution.” CMS, Affordable Insurance Exchanges Guidance (September 30, 2013, available at [URL REMOVED].

    Because certain members of Congress and congressional employees are enrolled in a small business exchange, the government is contributing monies contrary to the ACA. If OPM’s and CMS’s regulation and guidance were revoked, the government would save monies being expended unlawfully to provide contributions to the approximately 20,000 members of Congress and congressional employees. In addition, the rule of law will be enforced.

    • BB Grace July 1, 2017

      Will the arrogant exceptionally privileged liberal arts hypocrites in the rural areas of CA get a clue?

      Senator Feinstein’s request for apology absurd

      “US Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein issued a statement Thursday, slamming the Global Times as “unconscionable” and saying that it “threatened University of California San Diego (UCSD) and Chancellor Pradeep Khosla.” She demanded the newspaper to immediately apologize and retract the article.

      UCSD invited the Dalai Lama to speak at its commencement on June 17. More than 3,000 Chinese students currently study there, accounting for 14 percent of the total. The invitation to the Dalai Lama to speak was strongly opposed by Chinese students.

      An opinion article in the Global Times on June 20, titled “US university fails to teach students correct history of Tibet,” criticized UCSD, pointing out the decision would affect exchanges between the chancellor and the university with China.

      We are astonished that Feinstein, a senator from California, is so fragile in facing criticisms from the Chinese media and can’t cope with our “threat” toward UCSD and its chancellor. It seems that some public figures and institutions in the US are beyond media criticism. If people call to boycott them, they must apologize and retract their criticism….” China moves to boycott UC?

      From Free Canada, frustration on the right:

      “On a trip to China to meet with the Communist dictator President Xi Jinping, California Governor Jerry Brown is signaling to the world his fidelity to the unratified and dubious Paris Climate treaty, in spite of President Donald Trump’s recent withdrawal from the pact. Brown should be investigated for colluding with a known foreign enemy upon his return to the United States—a federal republic of 50 states of which he is but one governor”

      Conspiracy theory:

      “I previously reported the following with regard to California’s attempt to become a separate and independent nation under the control of El Presidente, present California governor Jerry Brown.” (Guild is part of the breakup of farming communities in CA)


      “The latest iteration of the so-called “Calexit” movement took its first formal steps Friday when organizers submitted a ballot measure that would amend the state’s constitution to remove the word “inseparable” from the declaration that “California is an inseparable part of the United States of America.”

  11. james marmon June 30, 2017

    When I worked for RCS and Families United Foster Family and Adoption (FFA) Agencies it was my job to keep my 15 beds filled. My reports to Mendocino County and Lake County CPS were always negative and against returning the children to their natural parent. My reports were edited to shine the most negative light possible towards the parents and emphasize the so called past damage to the children and future risk.

    This is what made me dangerous to the County.

    James Marmon MSW

    • james marmon July 1, 2017

      To my stupid friends at SEIU 1021

      Why are things so bad at Family and Children’s Services? Its by design, typical Angelo.

      The new HHSA Operation’s Manager, Anne Molgaard is nuts and is systematically attempting to privatize Family and Children’s Services and she appears to be getting away with it. Camille Schraeder to the rescue.

      “Redwood Community Services provides Emergency Service Assistants (ESS) to meet with investigators from FCS to remove children to safety while the Social Worker collects data and analyzes the situation. The FCS investigators have reported ESS services are a great help. These assistants, stationed in Willits, meet investigators at emergencies both inland and on the Coast.”

      I know how all the pieces fit together, primarily because of working for private foster care and adoption agencies, child welfare agencies, mental health agencies, and the courts.

      The courts are where we’ll get this all settled.

      Going to get interesting.

      James Marmon MSW
      Former SEIU 1021 President
      Mendocino Chapter.

  12. George Hollister June 30, 2017

    “The Depression and the New Deal in Mendocino County”

    Nice piece on a different era, where what is mostly different from today is the attitude. There are still some alive who lived the depression on the Coast, and remember it. Those were hard times, looked upon by those who lived it as memorable times. Hard work, sweat, dirt and camaraderie. Was it ideal? Of course not, but it was the people and that attitude that made America the great country that it is today. We need to remember that.

  13. lindyj June 30, 2017

    RE: Lazarus, I happened to be heading up to my home on upper Sherwood Road the day they decided to cut down those beautiful and rare cork oaks in front of the American Legion. I could not believe what I was seeing, and the traffic in front of and in back of me actually missed the left turn light because we were staring in complete denial that something that stupid and destructive was actually happening! I have followed the bypass and actually thought that it might be better than all the fume pulsating traffic in downtown Willits in the summer. But this was absolutely criminal collateral damage by Cal Trans and a decidedly disconnected and self-absorbed city council. Kind of like the school board getting us buried in the ridiculously expensive scam of the school bond debacle.

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