Mendocino County Today: Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017

* * *


by Justine Frederiksen

The Ukiah City Council Wednesday unanimously upheld permits approved for a homeless services center on South State Street by denying an appeal filed by a nearby business owner.

“We have a problem, and (Redwood Community Services) is willing to jump on this and try and make the community better,” said Mayor Jim Brown, describing the agency as having a “proven track record” and adding that he believed the facility it proposes to run would not be the “Band-Aid” that many opponents described, but rather a “stepping stone.”

“We are the county seat and we need to act like it,” said Vice-Mayor Kevin Doble, saying that in order to adequately address the issues surrounding Ukiah’s homeless and transient residents, the community needed to “dig deep in our hearts” and treat everyone as human beings worthy of respect.

“I think everyone in this room agrees that we need a shelter,” said Ed Haynes, who filed the appeal of the project. Haynes owns Ukiah Veterinary Hospital, located three blocks south of the building where RCS wants to operate a daytime homeless services center year-round, as well as an overnight shelter a few months a year. “The problem is the location and the size.”

Haynes said he and other members of the community want the facility “to make our homeless numbers go down,” not attract more people to the area, and he was concerned that there was no way to pull the plug on the project if it did not improve the situation for not only the nearby residents and businesses, but the community as a whole.

More than one longtime Ukiah resident told the City Council that they had seen their city change from one where “all you saw was some kids skateboarding” on the streets, to one with public areas littered with people passed out, fighting, urinating, defecating, starting fires and leaving behind garbage.

“There is an element that is seedy, disrespectful and lawless,” said one man. “It’s not everybody, but they’re there, and we need to find a way to weed them out.”

When City Council member Doug Crane asked RCS spokeswoman Camille Schrader how her organization would decide whom to serve first, she said her staff would be utilizing a system that uses several risk factors to determine who was the most vulnerable and in need of assistance.

“People are working together to address this situation, and maybe it won’t change, but maybe it will,” said Don Poplawski, his voice breaking as he said the center might be able to “alleviate some of the bad behaviors we’ve been having in our streets, doorways, fields and creeks. It’s not perfect, but let’s give it a chance: even a little seed grows into a big tree.”

Resident Mark Mountanos said he did not see the facility as helping solve most of the problems mentioned because, “We have no housing. Where is the transitional housing (the clients) are supposed to move into?

“And this facility you’re proposing is nicer than City Hall. Why do we need to build a monument to the homeless?” he continued, proposing that a cheaper, larger building could serve many more people. “RCS does great work, that’s not the issue. We need to put something like this on the ballot and let the citizens vote.”

“The community wants accountability,” said City Manager Sage Sangiacomo, explaining that his staff made changes to the project plan that “added considerable checks and balances, and ultimately the whole permit itself has a revocation process” if the center doesn’t operate as promised and the problems people are seeing near their homes, offices, businesses, parks and creeks don’t improve.

The City Council then voted unanimously to uphold the permits for the project proposed for 1045 S. State St.

(Courtesy, the Ukiah Daily Journal)

* * *


Hey - An Elk In Elk Thursday

MSP saw this photo on a post by Christine Kenton-Braden Thursday night. She added, "We saw the elk in Elk, CA today. My 3rd spotting, but who is counting?"

(Via MendocinoSportsPlus)

* * *

WELL, SHUT MY MOUTH. I know all of you share my shock that Harvey Weinstein is not a nice man. But as soon as you've recovered from this terrible news, you'll be reassured that your fave movie stars, the really big ones, have refused comment.

Perhaps Marilyn Monroe, a frequent target of lecherous studio chiefs and filmmakers, said it best in her memoir, My Story: “I met them all. Phoniness and failure were all over them. Some were vicious and crooked. But they were as near to the movies as you could get. So you sat with them, listening to their lies and schemes. And you saw Hollywood with their eyes — an overcrowded brothel, a merry-go-round with beds for horses."

* * *

THE FAILURE of Fort Bragg to pull Hospitality House's use permit isn't surprising, especially in the cringing civic context of Mendocino County, but one has to wonder how many violations of basic standards does HH have to violate before the City moves on them? And HH's hire of a lawyer to do its talking for them adds a major insult to Fort Bragg's injury. Judy Valadao summed it all up perfectly:

"In my opinion the Hospitality House now has the green light to do as they please. Their attorney made that perfectly clear when she said 'we will not bend'.

It was surprising to me that those who claim to want to help the clients of The House weren’t there in mass to support the appeal. After all the appeal was about the clients and additions that could have made things better for everyone involved.

During the entire process I wondered why the Hospitality people weren’t talking more about what they could do to improve things for the clients. Instead they pointed out they aren’t responsible for the homeless unless they are on House property. Then said they aren’t going to bend to the request to allow the homeless a place to sit or rest during the day. They won’t even keep the restroom open during the daytime. Seems to me those who are in charge of a Homeless Shelter really aren’t responsible for the homeless. Why then are they getting funds from the county to be used for the homeless that they aren’t responsible for?

Who are the real losers in the end?"

* * *

PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING AGENDA for October 19, 2017, is posted on the department website at:

Please contact staff with any questions.

Victoria Davis, Commission Services Supervisor, 707-234-6664

* * *

ONE OF THE ITEMS on the October 19 agenda is a significant expansion of the Tollhouse about six miles up Highway 253 from downtown Boonville:

“MAJOR USE PERMIT to expand an existing inn from 6 to 11 units; expand farm labor housing from 1 to 3 units; build an owner’s residence, a caretaker’s residence, 12 glamping [sic] units, and 8 tent camping spaces; host up to 10 private events and/or weddings per year with up to 100 guests per event and up to 5 private events and/or weddings per year with up to 150 guests per event; provide a temporary tent village with 20 camping spaces to support the 5 private events and/or weddings.”

PS. “Glamping”?

From “Glamping, also known as luxury camping or glamorous camping, is that escape you’ve been meaning to take. It’s that little break from the hustle and bustle. It’s a moment by yourself in a secluded treehouse. It’s that chance to try climbing up a mountain or diving into the sea. It’s your chance to be adventurous, be secluded, be daring, be free – glamping lets you do all of that and more. … Glamping is a one-of-a-kind experience where you’ll get to choose an extremely unique accommodation, pick an amazing backdrop and get ready for the experience of a lifetime – all without sacrificing even an ounce of comfort. Glamping is a way to connect with your surroundings without having to rough it. When you glamp, you can expect amazing views, unique structures and secluded landscapes while you relax in comfortable beds, take luxurious bubble baths, enjoy on-site spas or even escape to your private beach.”

* * *

HENDY WOODS COMMUNITY will again be picking up Day Use fees for local people this Second Sunday of October, the 8th. Come see the lovely new paths and boardwalks that were created in the Upper Loop of Big Hendy Grove after the wild Winter of 2016-17 or enjoy the sunshine and fall colors in the big meadow or along the Navarro River.

* * *

LITTLE DOG SAYS, “The coyotes went off big time last night with the full moon. I know we're related and all, but I don't trust them. They're tough and mean, unlike us dogs, and when they all start howling like they did last night, well, I get the major heebie-jeebies!”

* * *

SUPERVISOR McCowen got a pretty good shot from Mike Koepf in this week's paper, not that it wasn't deserved on the transient rental issue, and not that McCowen is so thin skinned that he is likely to suffer lasting trauma.

I'M PRETTY SURE we're the only media people in the county who watch the Supes gavel-to-gavel, and we rate McCowen, Gjerde and Crosky as thoughtful and always prepared to rationally discuss the issues, Carre Brown, occasionally is capable, Supervisor Hamburg seldom capable. McCowen, as we've said before, also deserves major attaboys for personally spending many of his off hours cleaning up after the homeless in the Ukiah Valley, especially where they've fouled tributaries to the Russian River and areas on the River itself. He 's the only elected official we know of who knows the problem presented by the homeless first-hand.

THE COUNTY OF MENDO has had a problem with high personnel turnover for years. People get hired here and, at the first opportunity of higher pay and better chances for advancement, leave for another county. The DA has just seen five prosecutors leave for greener pastures, and we've just learned that one of our favorite administrators in the County CEO'S office, Alan Flora, has departed. Where Flora has departed for is not known. The rumor is that he had personal difficulties with CEO Carmel Angelo.

MEANWHILE, over at the Superior Court, their honors refuse to even acknowledge the present status of, it is presumed, former Chief Probation Officer Pamela Markham. The judges apparently spent months "investigating" Ms. Markham for on-duty sexual hijinks before they finally relieved her of her duties, placing her on paid leave, all the while thoroughly non-personing her.

* * *

THE GOOD NEWS: Fall color. The poplars are turning their annual gold, evenings are cool, mornings are crisp, afternoons warm, and even the vineyards are shades of red against the sere hills. Mendocino County is never more beautiful than it is in October.

* * *

CATCH OF THE DAY, October 6, 2017

Brunk, Ammerman, Elder, Faber

JOHN BRUNK, Fort Bragg. Elder abuse, criminal threats, shoplifting, witness intimidation, probation revocation.

MORGAN AMMERMAN, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

PEDER ELDER, Ukiah. Assault with deadly weapon not a gun, domestic battery, probation revocation.

SCOTT FABER, Ukiah. Petty Theft, county parole violation.

Gayle, Harris, Holmes

AJOHN GAYLE, Eureka. DUI, open container.

ALEXANDER HARRIS, Laguna Beach/Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, trespassing.

SUSAN HOLMES, Ukiah. DUI-alcohol/drugs, controlled substance, paraphernalia, more than an ounce of pot.

Magana, Nelson-Dean, Southwick

CARLOS MAGANA, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

JOSHUA NELSON-DEAN, Ukiah. Parole violation, failure to appear.

BRADLEY SOUTHWICK, Portland, Oregon/Ukiah. Criminal threats.

Strout, Toyos, Villalobos

JUSTIN STROUT, Ukiah. Vandalism, conspiracy.

SYLVIA TOYOS, Willits. Resisting.

RAFAEL VILLALOBOS, Ukiah. Concentrated cannabis, probation revocation.

* * *


How the Elderly Lose Their Rights

* * *

* * *


East Hill House in Willits, 1180 East Hill Road (next door to East Hill Veterinary Clinic), Saturday, October 14 , 2017

Come any time between 1 pm and 6pm. A free event for people who like grapes. There will be approximately 40 varieties of delicious table grape to try that were grown right there in Willits. Plants of 20 of these grape varieties will be available for sale. The grape press will be set up all day for making fresh juice. You can sample and participate in the pressing. Juice will be available for $5/quart. Bring your own bottles or jars to fill. At 3:00, I will give a short presentation about growing table grapes and answer any questions. Grapes are easy to grow. If this is your first tasting here, you will probably be surprised and delighted by the different tastes and textures that you will experience. These grapes are beyond store-bought grapes. If you have some of your own grapes or other fruits that you would like to share, please bring them for tasting. Tree Collard plants will also be available for purchase. If you are unfamiliar with tree collards, see this YouTube video - Growing Tree Collards

Questions? Call Richard Tootreese Jeske at (707) 459-5926

* * *


(via Lee Edmundson)

* * *

“WHATEVER MESSAGE Washington and Western mass media are trying to push, a perfectly valid response is to point out all the times they have lied in the past, and to pose a simple question: When did they stop lying?”

Dmitry Orlov

* * *


by Manuel Vicent

Translated by Louis S. Bedrock

The postulates of Euclides, father of geometry, continue to be studied in universities after 2,300 thousand years of history. His concepts of lines, line segments, and equidistances are applied today, unmodified, by engineers and architects in their work. According to Euclides, equidistance is a fixed relationship in the exact middle of the two extreme points of a line segment. This postulate, which in the realm of geometry is the consequence of an elegant and subtle creation of the mind, is, in contrast, a highly insulting term in politics and social behavior because it is considered a lukewarm, weak, and cowardly position between the two extremes in a line segment of ideas. This contempt comes from far away and long ago. As early as Revelation 3:16, Yahweh says,

—So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of My mouth.

To be equidistant from the Right and the Left, the independence movement and those in favor of national unity, capitalism and communism, freedom of speech and its control, means to be weak, to lack commitment and decision, despite the fact that in reality the opposite is true.

If geometrical equidistance in architecture permits the keystone of the arch to absorb and distribute forces so that houses and bridges do not collapse, the application of humanism has assured that our society maintains a subtle but firm equilibrium ever since we left behind our primate ancestors.

One must have a lot of interior strength to be an “equidistant”. This challenging conquest of the spirit is often ridiculed today. However, equidistance leads to moderation, the instinctive rejection of any absolute truth, and even a sense of humor. Let the fanatical servants of Yahweh insult you. Equidistance will make you skeptical and kind. It’s the essential steel shaft that prevents you from collapsing internally.

* * *

* * *


by James Kunstler

Grinning like Wonderland’s Cheshire Cat, the Golden Golem of Greatness pronounced this interval of fine fall weather “the calm before the storm.” Hmmmm. Talk about cryptic. This was less than a week after he verbally smacked down Secretary of State Rex Tillerson for “wasting his time” trying to diplomatically reach “Little Rocket Man… “ whereby Rex riposted, calling the President a “moron.”

Ordinarily — say, during the past 220-odd years of this nation’s existence — talk like that would prompt a resignation (though, there are no other instances of talk like that). Tillerson must think that for the good of the country he can’t resign, and God knows what kind of desperate notes are being swapped around between the State Department and the Pentagon.

Where, of course, dwell the generals, lovingly referred to by the president as “my generals,” as if they came out of a trunk full of tin soldiers in the White House play-room. A lot to chew on there. For instance, perhaps the generals have been waiting more than a half century for a good excuse to light up some really odious adversary, just to see how well our serious ordnance works. Or maybe not. Maybe they are all extraordinarily temperate and judicious fellows, averse to apocalyptic violence. Or maybe they are panting to be let off the leash by POTUS… or maybe they want to leash and muzzle the president… and perhaps stuff him into a pet carrier and drown him in the Potomac. For the moment, it’s fun to ruminate on these things, the possibilities are so rich.

But then, we’re told that this is the calm before the storm. As it happens, just this morning the National Hurricane Center has a storm called “Nate” aimed squarely into New Orleans, ETA Sunday. Now that would be an event the USA does not need, considering how things have gone weather-wise this year. Stand by for developments.

But I doubt the president was referring to that the other day. We are entering a slot of time where an awful lot of things might go wrong. What gets me is seeing the stock markets make new record highs every other day, whether Puerto Rico is destroyed overnight or hundreds of people are shot in a Las Vegas parking lot — and notwithstanding the overall phony-baloney condition of the American economy, with half of the flyover population in an opiate daze, and chain-stores shuttering to the tune of 10,000 this year, and car leases expiring into a car market dependent on liar loans bundled into janky securities, and the debt problem festering away like a something dead under the floor boards.

Some kind of financial accident with a this-sucker-is-going-down flavor feels like it’s waiting to happen. I don’t think Trump was referring to that either, but what if it came down around the same moment that we decided to light up North Korea? Or, alternately, if Rex Tillerson, Mike Pence, and a score of other senior politicos decide that its time for Trump to go? The president is looking mighty friendless these days, and more than a little reckless. I mean, for the good of the country, ladies and gentlemen, what are they waiting for?

Will his generals defend him? Nah. Fuggedabowdit. I wonder what the code-name for their action will be. Operation Moron Overboard? The whole spectacle is starting to look like a Coen Brothers movie. When the time comes, I hope they will make the documentary about these strange days of October, 2017.

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page:

* * *


by Dan Bacher

State Auditor Elaine Howle today released an audit on Governor Jerry Brown’s Delta Tunnels project revealing extensive mismanagement by the Department of Water Resources, including the violation of state contracting laws, spending millions of dollars over anticipated costs, and failure to complete either an economic or financial analysis.

The 97-page report said the Department of Water Resources (DWR) broke state contracting laws when they replaced the program manager for the California WaterFix, formerly called the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP). The WaterFix project aims to build two massive 35-mile long tunnels under the Delta to export Sacramento River water to corporate agribusiness interests in the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California water agencies.

The audit summary pointed out that although DWR used a “robust selection process” to select its first program manager, the URS Corporation, it later used “other methods” to select a replacement program manager, the Hallmark Group.

Chuck Gardner is the CEO and President of the Hallmark Group. As of July 2017, DWR had given Gardner $13.8 million to work on the tunnels project.

The report said DWR directed its contractor to replace their program manager with the Hallmark Group “without demonstrating that this new program manager was qualified to provide such services or had the required professional license.”

Hallmark “lacked a licensed engineer required by law for construction project managers and had no demonstrable experience planning large water resources infrastructure projects,” according to the audit, page 27.

“DWR later awarded this new program manager its own contract without a competitive process, and the program manager has had to subcontract many of the program management functions for which DWR is generally paying a markup of 5 percent,” the audit determined.

In a contorted procedure, DWR hired the new contractor under the existing contract with URS by making Hallmark a subtractor. But instead of making Hallmark responsible to URS, they instead made them accountable to DWR, in spite of Hallmark not having the qualifications to manage such a project.

The report reveals how DWR audit and internal audit staff complained about Hallmark’s qualifications to do the job, but the upper management and DWR legal counsel ignored their advice.

“No pesky (request for qualifications), no (statement of qualifications) no review, no silly determining if the new folks are actually the most qualified, no allowing other firms to apply for the work, no following the code,” one email from a DWR whistleblower stated. “The practice has become so prevalent, we’re actually starting to address it in our additional payment provisions where we allow a higher markup on (subcontractors) we direct the contractor to add.”

“This looks surprisingly like a bribe to keep them quiet,” the email concluded

Interestingly enough, the recommendation for Hallmark came from Jeff Kightlinger, general manager of the Metropolitan Water District (MWD) of Southern California, but they kept no records of how they determined Hallmark was qualified for the job.

“It smells like a sweetheart deal,” said Tim Stroshane, Policy Analyst for Restore the Delta.

In addition to the apparent sweetheart deal made to hire Hallmark, the auditor also revealed the costs and timeline of the planning phase “increased significantly due to the scale and unexpected complexity of the project.”

As of June 2017, the planning phase cost had increased approximately $280 million from the original cost estimate of $140 million in 2009. DWR only spent 6 percent of its own funding, with 31 percent of funds coming from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, 22 percent from MWD, 12 percent from Kern County Water Authority, and 17 percent from San Luis Delta Mendota Water Authority.

Finally, the audit said DWR “has not ensured that it is prepared’ for the transition of WaterFix to the design and construction phase of the project, noting that:

  • It has not completed either an economic or a financial analysis to demonstrate the financial viability of WaterFix.
  • It has not fully implemented a governance structure for the design and construction phase of the project.
  • It has not updated required program management documents for the planning phase yet WaterFix has evolved since it began. 

Erin Mellon, Assistant Director of Public Affairs for Department of Water Resources, said the Director's formal response “speaks for itself.” []

However, she noted there are a “few key takeaways” from the response.

”The audit confirms no general fund dollars were used,” Mellon said. “The audit also validates the unprecedented and exhaustive work the Department has done to propose the best project for the state of California.”

She also said, “The Department has already taken action based on the auditor's feedback and will take their recommendations under advisement as it moves forward with WaterFix.”

Delta Tunnels opponents praised the release of the audit for exposing the “many flaws” of the Delta Tunnels process, including the misuse of taxpayer money by DWR.

Last August, the Joint Legislative Audit Committee voted to launch a state audit investigating the funding for the California WaterFix, as requested by Assemblymember Susan Eggman and Senator Lois Wolk.

“The audit released today, which I requested with my Delta colleagues, further illuminates the many flaws of the WaterFix Project,” said Eggman in a statement. “The findings reveal that after 11 years of planning there remain more questions than answers about the viability and benefits of the project. Significant cost increases, failure to follow state law regarding contracts, inadequate expertise, and the absence of economic analysis or a financial plan – this is what more than a decade of planning has resulted in.”

“One can only imagine the boondoggle that will result if this project were ever to advance to the construction stage. It is time for a different direction,” she concluded.

Likewise, Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla, Executive Director of Restore the Delta, said, “Both the state audit and federal audit have confirmed a misuse of taxpayer money and irresponsible financial planning for the Delta Tunnels. With this latest finding from the State Auditor, Westlands Water District’s withdrawal from the project, and Metropolitan Water District’s public staff statements that ‘they won’t have to pay for the tunnels if they don’t take water’ and that ‘the project could now be one or two tunnels,” California WaterFix is in complete disarray.”

“We cannot see how any public water agency can vote to support any percentage of this project as project planning basics are not in place,” she emphasized.

Barrigan-Parrilla noted that this audit was only made possible through research compiled by Restore the Delta policy analyst Tim Stroshane and by Pacific Advocates’ Patricia Schifferle.

“State Auditor Elaine Howle and her crack staff found that DWR mismanaged first the Bay Delta Conservation Plan and more recently the California WaterFix,” said Stroshane. “They failed to foresee the project’s complexity, used sweetheart deals to hire contractors, and failed to apply accountable management practices. Overall, DWR breached the public’s trust in its attempts to plan and implement Governor Jerry Brown’s tunnels vision.”

In September, the Inspector General (IG) for the U.S. Department of Interior determined that the Bureau of Reclamation improperly used over $84.8 million in federal taxpayer’s money in the planning process for Governor Jerry Brown’s Delta Tunnels project. The IG issued a 42-page report detailing the misuse of the money and the recommendations made to Reclamation to resolve the issue.

For more information, go to:

A summary of the state audit can be viewed here.

The full report be viewed here.

* * *


Due to a death in the family of one of our program officers, the Community Foundation of Mendocino County is making the following changes to our Community Enrichment Grant Workshops and Technical Assistance presentations during the month of October. The Fort Bragg workshop originally scheduled on October 13th has been cancelled and rescheduled to October 27th. The South Coast presentation scheduled on October 20th will be cancelled. We encourage South Coast residents to attend the Fort Bragg presentation on the 27th. The current schedule for all workshops is listed below:

* Willits: October, 6th, 12:00-1:00 (brown-bag lunches welcome), Willits Center for the Arts, 71 E. Commercial St., Willits.

* Ukiah: October 9th, 12:00-1:00 (brown-bag lunches welcome), Community Foundation of Mendocino County Community Room, 204 S. Oak St., Ukiah.

***NEW DATE***Fort Bragg: October 27th, 12:00-1:00 (brown-bag lunches welcome), Fort Bragg Library, 299 E. Laurel St., Fort Bragg.

Each grant workshop will be followed by an optional technical assistance workshop from 1:00-2:00. Both workshops are offered at no cost to participants. RSVP appreciated, but not required. The technical assistance workshop, Protecting Your Organization:

Internet Security Basics by Tom Jacobson, will include a presentation on simple steps and tools to better protect organizations; including sharing examples of ransomware, hacking and other cyber security problems that have affected local and neighboring non-profits. More information on the workshop can be found on in the 2018 Community Enrichment Grant Guidelines.

We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience and understanding.

For questions, please contact Michelle Rich, 707-468-9882,

Staff: Megan Barber Allende, CEO; Neil DiBernardo, Administrative Coordinator; Michelle Rich, Senior Program Officer; Holly Madrigal, Program Officer

* * *


Mayor Scott Ignacio ~ Vice Mayor Barbara Burkey ~ Richey Wasserman ~ Jonathan Torrez ~ Anna Dobbins

Agenda - October 11, 2017

Special Session - 6:00 p.m.City Hall - 451 School St.

I. Call To Order & Roll Call

II. Approval Of Agenda

III. Privilege Of The Floor (Public Comment Period)

Notice to the Public: This is the time for members of the public who wish to be heard on matters that do not appear on the Agenda. City Council policy is to limit each speaker to three (3) minutes. Such time allotment or portion thereof shall not be transferred to other speakers. The public will be allowed to speak concurrently with the calling of an agenda item following the staff presentation of that item. Pursuant to the Brown Act Section 54954.3, the City Council may not take action on an item that does not appear on the Agenda.

IV. Presentations & Action Items —All Items in this Section May Be Action Items

A. Naming Park at Arena Cove

Recommendation: Receive report, discuss and direct staff

V. Closed Session

A. Performance Evaluation Pursuant to GC §54957: City Manager

VI. Adjournment If open session items cannot be completed by 9:00 p.m., the meeting may be adjourned to the next regular meeting or Council may vote to extend the meeting.

* * *



A Tale of Guns & Rats

Once upon a time, on the banks of a great river in the north of our world there lay a land called Shenanigonia. The citizens of Shenanigonia were honest folk who lived in peace in their stone houses. The years went by and everyone prospered and lived healthy lives. Then one day, an extraordinary thing happened to disturb the peace. Shenanigonia had always had guns, plenty to tell the truth, but the people had never felt they were in danger. Why? Well of course because the elders had always solved the gun problem in the usual way - by regulating them. Suddenly the guns had begun to multiply. In the end the wave of guns swarmed over the whole land unleashing an epidemic of death and destruction. The terrified citizens hoping to free themselves from the plague of violence joined together in gun control defense committees.

Meanwhile on the other side of the land of Shenanigonia, in the town of Corruptina, The National Gun Association, known by the common folk as the N.G.A., was holding a meeting of the Board of Directors. The president said, “These gun control committees are multiplying like rats we must come up with a plan.” Just then there was a loud knock on the door of the N.G.A. The door was opened and there stood a tall thin man dressed in brightly colored clothes, with a long feather in his hat, and waving a gold pipe at them. He then spoke in a thunderous voice, “I’ve freed other lands from gun control organizations and for $10 million in gold, I’ll rid you of yours.” “$10 million!” exclaimed the Board of Directors, “We will give you $1 million only if you succeed”. At once the stranger hurried away saying. “It’s late now, but by dawn tomorrow, there won’t be any gun control organizations left in Shenanigonia.”

The sun was still well below the horizon, when the sound of a pipe wafted through the streets of the land. The piper made his way through the streets and as he passed the gun control offices and their banks they all vanished into thin air. By the time the sun was high in the sky there was not a single gun control organization left in the land. There was a great celebration taking place at the headquarters of the N.G.A. When the piper came to claim his reward, the N.G.A president exclaimed, “$10 million in gold? - Never!”

“Give me at least $1 million in gold” cried the pied piper angrily.

The President screamed back, “the gun controllers are all out of business now, so be grateful for $100,000, or you’ll not get even that amount…”

His eyes filled blood red with rage, the pied piper pointed a finger at the president of the N.G.A. and said, “You will bitterly regret ever breaking your promise,” and then he vanished. A shiver of fear ran through the room, but the President said “Don’t worry; we have saved over $9 million.”

That night, freed from the gun controllers, the NGA board of directors slept soundly with their favorite pistol tucked under their pillows. At dawn the strange sound of piping was heard only by some. Drawn as if by magic, they came into the streets: the NGA board of directors, their lobbyists, firearms industry and corporate backers all flocked at his heals to the sound of his strange piping. The long procession soon left the town and made its way through the woods and across the forest till it reached the Washingtonian Obeliskic Monumentous. When the piper arrived at the foot of the Monumentous he played the pipe even louder still and a huge door slowly opened. In trouped the piper with everyone behind him and then the door slammed shut. A few moments later the Obeliskic Monumentous shot up into the sky like a bullet and just as it disappeared into space the sky exploded in brilliant colors of red, white and blue.

Dr. Nayvin Gordon, a California Family Physician who has written many articles on Health and Politics,


* * *

IT’S AMUSING to watch the contortions that media and political elites go through to avoid mentioning the most obvious lesson to be drawn from the spiking rate of mass shootings: state-sponsored violence propagates violence within the state. We have been at war now for 16 consecutive years, a war that has expanded from Afghanistan to Iraq, Iraq to Pakistan, Pakistan to Somalia, Somalia to Libya, Libya to Yemen, Yemen to Syria, Syria to Niger. So much sustained killing takes a physical and a psychic toll on a nation. To me it’s no coincidence that the Vegas shooting happened just a few miles from Creech Air Force Base, where America’s drone pilots do their remote-controlled wet-work.

— Jeffrey St. Clair

* * *

THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE WINE COMPETITION (SFCWC) is officially accepting wine entries now through November 15, 2017! As the largest competition of American wines in the world, the SFCWC is the barometer for how consumers measure and select their wines. To register, go to for more details.

* * *


America is clearly past its prime. The society unravels before our eyes and simply cannot be kept from collapse. You want to know how I know this? Because NOBODY CARES and they will even tell you so if you poll them as we do and quite often. Far too many do not care about anything anymore except each one for his or her own little sphere, not even for their own children. “Oh, we’ll be ok, but I feel sorry for my kids and my grandchildren”, I hear this everywhere all the time.

* * *


To all fans of Americana and singer/songwriter Tracy Grammer: Tracy will be here in Mendocino next Saturday, October 14!

2017 marks a much-anticipated musical bend in the road for Grammer as she prepares for the release of her first recording of original songs. This new path is bringing her to Matheson Performing Arts Center on Saturday, October 14, in a solo performance. The doors open at 7:00 for this 7:30 concert, and tickets are $20, available at (

Tracy Grammer is one of folk music's most beloved and inspiring artists. She has appeared numerous times on the Mendocino Coast, beginning in 2001 at Little River Inn with the late Dave Carter and performing solo here as recent as 2014 to a sold-out house. Renowned for her pure voice, deft guitar work, spirited violin playing, and masterful storytelling, Grammer has enjoyed 12 consecutive years as one of folk radio's 50 top-played artists.

For more information and Will Call tickets, contact Pattie at 707-937-1732, or email This production is in cooperation with Mendocino High School's Media Program and MHS Yearbook.

* * *


EVENT: Digging Dog Nursery's Fall Dog-Gone Super Plant Sale
DATES: October 6, 7 & 8
HOURS: 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (Saturday: Tour at 2:00.)
COST: FREE admission.
LOCATION: 31101 Middle Ridge Rd., Albion CA 95410. (Wheelchair accessible.)
CONTACT: Deborah Whigham/ Digging Dog Nursery
PHONE: (707) 937-1130
WEB: (full catalog)

BRIEF DESCRIPTION: October 6, 7 & 8, 10 am to 5 pm. Discover an abundance of easy-to-grow plants, including many hard-to-find, pollinator friendly and water wise selections, at a savings! Stroll our beautiful display plantings. Saturday at 2 pm join Deborah Whigham for a guided tour and discover plants that add late season pizzaz, spark winter intrigue, and provide welcome fodder for the birds, plus glean great design ideas and helpful maintenance tips! Enjoy refreshments & questions welcome. Digging Dog Nursery has been featured in The Garden Conservancy¹s “Outstanding American Gardens,” "Martha Stewart Living," "House and Garden," "Vista" and other publications.

* * *


(Australia never had another mass shooting incident after putting in better gun control in 20 years ago.)

* * *

MEMO OF THE AIR (Friday, last night)

If you want to talk about your project on KNYO in person --or bring your instrument(s) and fellow instrumentalists and actually play music— you can drop by 325 N. Franklin, Fort Bragg after 9pm tonight (Friday) and just walk in. Head for the lighted room at the back and get my attention. You're never interrupting me; I'm happy to see you. I have plenty of material to read to fill up the time whether you come or not, so there's no pressure. Though, as expressed yesterday, I'll have a little cheap chocolate on the table, and soda crackers, and maybe even pickles.

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

And/or you can have your own show on KNYO. Contact Bob Young: and express your radiophilic desires. Also please consider assisting KNYO in a small way with money. The big high-power radio stations do not need your money; they are all lying to you about needing your money. They have money coming out of their ears. They have so much money at KZYX, for example, that the people in the office pay themselves nearly $300,000 a year, and the airpeople currently interrupting their shows to beg for your money in their fall pledge drive are paid nothing. Make your blood boil? Well, I should say!

KZYX blows $600,000 a year (!) on piffle, whereas KNYO needs only $10,000 or $12,000 a year, but it needs it. See, that's the difference. Here: go to and click on the big red heart that means you are loved and respected, and then follow your own large warm heart as regards helping Bob keep KNYO-LP on the air for Fort Bragg. Even if you already feel good, think how much better you'll feel then.

Marco McClean

* * *


Main Item:

5a) Noticed Public Hearing (Continued from October 3, 2017) - Discussion and Possible Action to Introduce and Waive First Reading of an Adopting Chapter 6.36 - Cannabis Facilities Businesses and Chapter 20.243 - Cannabis Facilities

(Sponsors: County Counsel, Planning and Building Services and Treasurer-Tax Collector Recommended Action: Introduce and waive first reading of an Ordinance adopting Chapter 6.36 - Cannabis Facilities Businesses and Chapter 20.243 - Cannabis Facilities.

Attachments at the website:

Cannabis Facilities Staff Report - 10.10.17

Ordinance Adopting 6.36 and 20.243 - 10.6.17 red

Ordinance Adopting 6.36 and 20.243 - 10.6.17 cln

OA_2017-0001 (Cannabis Facilities) Staff Report - 10.3.17

Proof of Publication

Chapter 6.36 and 20.243 Ordinance Summary

* * *


Workshop: Forest Health = Salmon Health

October 14, Covelo, CA

The Eel River Recovery Project (ERRP) is sponsoring the third Round Valley Salmon Awareness Festival in Covelo on Saturday, October 14 with the support of the Round Valley Indian Tribes (RVIT). The event has two parts, a forest health workshop at the RVIT Indian Health Center (IHC) conference room early in the day, and a traditional Native American salmon feed and ceremony during the late afternoon at Hidden Oaks Park.

Doors at the RVIT IHC, on the right off Highway 162 north of Covelo, will open at 9:30 AM and coffee, bagels and fresh fruit will be served. Beginning at 10 AM and extending to 2 PM, there will be a workshop entitled “Forest Health Equals Salmon Health” that will begin with presentations by those knowledgable about forestry. Ranger Frank Aebly of the Upper Lake/Covelo Ranger District will make a presentation on recently completed forest health projects on the Mendocino National Forest and also talk about additional areas within his jurisdiction in need of forest health treatment.

Tracy Elgin is a Native American who resides in the upper North Fork Eel River and his talk entitled “A First-Hand Look at Forest Health” will address the disappearance of oak woodlands in his watershed. Bruce Hilbach-Barger is working on a biomass energy plant for the RVIT and will talk about how the removal of fuel it might use could play a role in forest health improvement. Jana Carp of the Fire Ring Network will present on “Fire Adapted Communities” and she will point out that, when each of us reduces fuels and improves forest health around our homes, we have individual parcel protection from catastrophic fire; however, if a community works together they can mold a fire-adapted ecosystem. RVIT elders Ron Lincoln Sr. and Ernie Merrifield will talk about traditional ecological knowledge and forest health and how the community can come back into balance with the landscape.

The discussion after presentations will be facilitated and thoughts and ideas expressed by the public and the experts captured as a written record and posted to the ERRP website. This provides a foundation of understanding and ideas about community organizing to achieve forest health objectives will be captured.

At 3 PM everyone will reconvene at the Hidden Oaks Park, which is across from the RVIT casino off Highway 162, for the traditional salmon feed and festivities. Salmon will be roasted in the traditional Indian way on carved redwood stakes around a ceremonial fire, and corn will be served as a main side-dish. Community members attending are invited to bring their favorite side dishes pot-luck style. Indian prayers and song will follow the feast which ends at 6 PM or whenever it gets dark.

A van will transport Willits residents to the forest health workshop and salmon celebration, which will leave from in front of the Willits Hub at 630 South Main Street just south of Highway 20 at 8:30 AM on October 14. Call Robin Leler to arrange transport at 459-0155 or Bruce Hilbach-Barger at 983-6169, if you would like to volunteer in Covelo. For more information also see or the ERRP Facebook page. There is no charge for admission or for the salmon feed, but donations will be accepted. Those donating $25 or more will become ERRP members.

* * *

"THOSE PERSONAGES of the aristocracy, those golden girls and golden boys, were now at his mercy. Using them, he constructed a world of fantasy and vice, of fascinating parties and murky souls. But critics took a long time to understand that the first volume of Remembrance of Things Past was not merely one more frivolous chronicle of the salons, but rather a perfidious creation in which memory and melancholy are able to reduce all the days of one’s existence to a single entity."

— Manuel Vicent

29 Responses to "Mendocino County Today: Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017"

  1. Brian Wood   October 7, 2017 at 7:59 am

    “To be equidistant from the Right and the Left, the independence movement and those in favor of national unity, capitalism and communism, freedom of speech and its control, means to be weak, to lack commitment and decision, despite the fact that in reality the opposite is true.”

    I have to disagree with that. Right and left of what? Those so-called equidistant points aren’t mindful of the truth, which often lies nowhere near “the middle”.

    • George Hollister   October 7, 2017 at 8:51 am

      I am often reminded of something Bernie Ward (an infamous someone the AVA might remember) often said, “Something can be true, and not be factual.”

      • Brian Wood   October 7, 2017 at 10:40 am

        Well, I disagree with that, too.

        • George Hollister   October 7, 2017 at 11:10 am

          BW was speaking of the Bible. But truth based on facts, in general, can be illusive, particularly when it comes to faith and political narratives. Whose facts are we using? And whose facts are we excluding? So we are stuck with just truths.

          Oh, yes, science. Science, when not influenced by group bias, does it’s job. Otherwise, the job of science can take some time, or never happen. It is much easier to use facts to deal with questions of anti-matter, than issues of climate change, gun violence, homelessness, and the proper role of government. So that leaves the truth, with great certainty, where one thinks it is. And we self righteously fight, and at times kill each other over our truths as well.

          It is part of being human.

          • LouisBedrock   October 7, 2017 at 11:46 am

            Say what?

            Mind-boggling nonsense.

      • LouisBedrock   October 7, 2017 at 11:01 am

        That’s the most stupid comment I’ve heard today; however, the day is young.

        • George Hollister   October 7, 2017 at 6:04 pm

          Louis, I know it is not likely the deliberate case, but you too often say things that support my point. It often leaves me wondering and asking, could Louis actually be doing this deliberately? I know, not likely. Not likely. Not likely.

          But then, what does that say about “well read” academics? The historical record is not always good.

    • LouisBedrock   October 7, 2017 at 10:58 am

      Vicent’s piece is poetic, but I agree with Mr. Wood.

      • Jeff Costello   October 7, 2017 at 3:23 pm

        I opted out of geometry in high school, but I know this for a fact: there is too much architecture.

        So many buildings just shout “ego!”

        I can also do nicely without chiropractors.

  2. james marmon   October 7, 2017 at 8:46 am


    Great News!

    We don’t have a homeless shelter in Lake County, and we don’t feed them either. They can go to Ukiah or Fort Bragg for those types of services.

    NCO in Clearlake does handout groceries every Wednesday but you have to show proof of income (or lack of) and proof of residence.

    • james marmon   October 7, 2017 at 8:53 am

      They can get their mental health services in Mental-cino County too, big savings for Lake County taxpayers, especially on hospitalizations.

      Once Sheriff Allman’s facility is built we won’t have to drive hours away to visit our love ones, that’s the best news.

      • james marmon   October 7, 2017 at 11:48 am

        I recommend chasing after more transitional living grants. We don’t have enough homeless mentally ill folks to qualify.

        Cha Ching $$$$$$$$

  3. Alice Chouteau   October 7, 2017 at 8:52 am

    Judy—BULLSEYE! A sad state of affairs..

  4. Lazarus   October 7, 2017 at 9:16 am

    “Advanced Life Support services provided by Verihealth stopped running on a 24/7 basis in Covelo a couple weeks ago after funding was exhausted to support the county-funded program.”
    “We’ll do what we can,” Linda Marshall, Covelo Fire Protection District Ambulance Director, said.” As reported in The Willits News,

    They want us to give to the homeless, the drug addicted, the mentals, yet they let the regular folks twist in the wind and go wanting…
    As always,

  5. Harvey Reading   October 7, 2017 at 9:47 am


    Pretty much the attitude of my four black Labs since 1975. The first three had strong survival instincts and steered clear of coyotes. The fourth less so regarding overall survival instincts, especially around traffic, but when the coyotes cry and yip, he stays in the cab or or in the house, too.

    Re: Dmitry Orlov

    Absolutely true.

    Re: Dan Bacher

    Hang in there, Dan, you just might win this one in the end…

    Re: “The society unravels before our eyes and simply cannot be kept from collapse.”

    It can be, but the nationalistic brainwashing by the wealthy, aided by the willing useful idiocy and apologetics of the well-compensated middle class, is difficult to overcome. And, quite frankly, it never really was much of a society, founded as it was on genocide, first inflicted internally, then in ever-widening swaths, around the world.

  6. Jim Updegraff   October 7, 2017 at 10:34 am

    El Trumpo the Village Idiot’s approval rating has dropped to 32%. Looks like there are still zombies out there for him.

    gun control: If it was to me No one would be allowed to have a gun.

    • LouisBedrock   October 7, 2017 at 11:50 am

      Well you should be shot!

  7. james marmon   October 7, 2017 at 11:13 am


    Lake County Board of Supervisors support Measure B, Mendocino County’s mental health tax.

    James Marmon MSW
    Former Mental Health Specialist
    Lake County Behavioral Health

    Lake County Resident

  8. LouisBedrock   October 7, 2017 at 11:48 am

    Whether he’s forging a panegyric for American death squads, like the Navy Seals or the Green Berets, that operate in foreign countries and murder foreign civilians, or he’s whining about local officials who oblige him to obey the law, Michael Koepf is a terrible writer and a sloppy thinker. He confuses feeble sarcasm and name calling with wit and debating skills.

    What could possibly go wrong with Airbnb?

    Ross Barkin provided some answers in an article in THE VILLAGE VOICE,

    “The hubris of sharing economy enthusiasts far exceeds any of the stuff needed for a new LaGuardia or Penn Station, even if what these people proffer is far less consequential. Airbnb’s revolution doesn’t quite rank with high-speed train travel, the electric bulb, or a modernized airport. Instead, its swollen valuation depends on a flouting of zoning logic that keeps big cities from turning entirely into Ayn Randian theme parks. It’s illegal in New York to rent out your apartment for less than 30 days if you’re not present because allowing landlords to transform apartments into hotel rentals would decimate housing stock. Why profit from annual leases when all that tourist cash is sitting on the table?”

    Motels, hotels, and bed and breakfast sites must follow certain codes and submit to periodic inspections. They are subject to zoning restrictions.

    Would you like to live in an apartment building in which several of the units were available to wealthy tourists who were insensitive to the needs and life styles of people who live in the building?

    Would you like your next door neighbor to run a boarding house for people from other places who might not understand and respect neighborhood norms?

    Koeph whines because he feels his right to do whatever he wants with his property has been trampled on. He doesn’t seem to understand the implications of allowing homeowners to become innkeepers. He doesn’t understand subtleties or nuances.

  9. Bruce McEwen   October 7, 2017 at 7:21 pm

    Meanwhile, back in his Walter Mitty Moment, Capt. Bedrock of the RAF, having parachuted from his Spitfire as it left a coiling ribbon of smoke on its nosedive into Whitehall, I say our hero Bedrock, drifting along in the clouds of his comfort zone, tugged the strings of his parachute with such aerodynamic finesse that he came to roost on the wing of a Messerschmitt, unsnapped his chute, let it blow away, then tap-danced like Fred Astaire from the Hackencreuz markings at mid-wing to the canopy — which totally charmed the Nazi pilot… who opened up and let him in.

    • Harvey Reading   October 8, 2017 at 9:57 am

      And you have a notion that someone would actually pay good money for your pathetic prose? I’ve read better than the above in cheap paperbacks sold off the stands at grocery stores. Stick with transcribing court proceedings.

      • LouisBedrock   October 8, 2017 at 10:15 am

        Chapter One:

        “Allan Greyson was on the run.  He was running from a mistake, an accident, really, that left another man dead.  He wasn’t guilty of murder, but he’d had a few brushes with the law, nothing serious, but harsh enough to instruct him in the cold, hard bent of legal procedures.  He had learned that the truth wasn’t always provable, and that lawyers were only interested in what could be proved; not necessarily what had actually happened.  He was pretty sure a determined prosecutor could prove he’d killed Thomas Klein – a man he’d never liked, anyway – so rather than stick around and try to sort it out, with the aid of a court-appointed lawyer, he ran.
        It would be a while before anybody missed old Tom Kline – well, to put it more accurately, nobody would ever actually miss the mean old snake – and even longer before they found what was left of him out on the desert near the Burr Trail.  With luck, nobody ever would.  But it didn’t make sense to wait and see.  What made sense was to go, clear off, get clear out of the country, and leave by such a route that nobody ever saw you leave, and to leave no trail.  So Allan left on horseback, kept to the back country, and headed north, up into the mountains, across state lines, into Wyoming, Montana, maybe even the Canadian Rockies, if it came to that.
        Allan had a good horse, and he probably wouldn’t be missed much himself.  He was known to spend a lot of time riding across the desert, up into the mountains, staying gone from his various temporary lodgings and workplaces for longer than most landlords and employers would put up with.  People who knew him would conclude that he’d moved on, and let it go at that – unless, of course, they came across Tom Klein’s body and noticed the coincidence the of timing, along with
        other circumstantial evidence.”

        (LEGENDS OF THE DEAD—A Novel by Bruce McEwen)

        Instead of making drunken, snarky remarks about everyone who writes comments in MCT, McEwen should finish his damned novel.

        The man can write.

        The chapters of his novel that I’ve read are very good.

        If he did this—and I doubt he has the discipline, character, or courage to do so, people would acknowledge that he’s perhaps the best writer at the AVA and not just a drunken clown.

        • Harvey Reading   October 8, 2017 at 10:48 am

          You gotta be kidding. I couldn’t even get through the excerpt you provided.

          • LouisBedrock   October 8, 2017 at 11:00 am

            Ha, ha. I guess we have different tastes.

            McEwen sent me about 10 chapters which I enjoyed a lot.
            Problem is he seems to be stuck at 10.

            Guess it’s easier to make smart-assed comments than to sit down and finish a book.

          • Harvey Reading   October 8, 2017 at 11:16 am

            Even Louis L’Amour the pulpist, who always had movie deals in mind, is more entertaining for me at least; so is Zane Grey, or Mary Doria Russell. To each his own. By the way, 10 chapters is barely getting started. My opinion is that McEwen has a ways to go to even catch up with Scaramella or Patterson, let alone exceed them.

            A course, then, I’m just a former hack technical writer, and former heavy drinker, so what do I know?

          • Harvey Reading   October 8, 2017 at 11:27 am

            One humorous, for me at least, thing about the subject “writer” that always amuses me is how he loves (or is it hates?) to portray me as a wealthy yuppie, which demonstrates for me that he is p*ss-poor when it comes to judgement. Hell, I picked him off as a loud-mouthed drunk right away. And I haven’t written 10 whole chapters of anything.

          • LouisBedrock   October 8, 2017 at 11:53 am

            You haven’t mentioned Steve Heilig, Fred Gardner (my favorite AVA writer), Zack, Jeff, Todd Walton (another favorite), or David Yearsley.

            McEwen has potential; little else.

            I must confess that I am ashamed of myself for printing the excerpt from McEwen’s unfinished masterpiece without his permission.

            There is no doubt that Mr. Anderson will have to expand the comment space for tomorrow’s MCT to accommodate the hundreds of expressions of outrage at my action by McEwen’s friends and fans.

          • LouisBedrock   October 8, 2017 at 11:56 am

            Incidentally, most of my Lit-major pals are tech writers.
            Tech writing demands very good writing skills.
            Don’t put it down–or I’ll be forced to tell my friends where you live and they will come for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.