- Stormy Weather
- Last Days
- Basketball Rivalry
- EMS Options
- Little Dog
- Ed Notes
- Ursula Le Guin
- Legal Greed
- Chief Leave
- Silver Coverage
- Yesterday's Catch
- PG&E Bills
- 9/11 Conspiracies
- Lemme Out
- Watershed Caps
- Help Al
- Soccer Academy
- System Collapse
- Old Tunes
- Abalone Song
- 1906 Dinner
- Lake Economics
- World Inequality
- Planning Agenda
- Sculpture Ranch
- Immaculate Reconception
- Mr Hearst
- Wastewater Dump
- Medical Ethics
STORMY WEATHER in store for the next few days. Windy tonight, heavy rain on Wednesday, snow on Thursday for interior locations. Showers on Friday and continued wet weather on Saturday. Dry weather after that. (National Weather Service)
JERRY COX QUITE ILL
Some of you may have heard that Jerry has been very sick. He has double pneumonia, RVS and has been in Ukiah Valley Medical Center in the ICU since last Wednesday. He is going to be going home on Hospice tomorrow (Wed) or Thursday. The Dr. thinks he has anywhere between a few days to a week. He is really too weak for visitors, but he will be surrounded in his last days by his family.
He has been able to talk to us and he knows what is going on. He is not afraid of death and he says he is ready to be with God. He is truly at peace. He has been so thankful for his life and he said he has been so happy.
We will be planning a funeral at Resurrection Parish in Santa Rosa shortly following his death, as well as a Celebration of Life in Anderson Valley. We will keep you all posted on the details. He told us last night that he wants an Irish Wake, which we'll do our best to make happen!
We love you all and thank you for the amazing love you have shown towards him.
Kathy, Rebekah & Mary Anne
IF THERE IS A MORE INTENSE, fiercely competitive coach in the NCL III than Anderson Valley's Luis Espinoza we have yet to meet them. And his teams reflect his intensity - he coaches both the boys JV & varsity squads.
Which is why you can toss the win/loss records out the window when Mendocino plays Anderson Valley - it'll be a dogfight in Boonville today and again when Mendo closes out the league season at home with the Panthers on Thursday, February 15th.
The "record" shows Mendo with four losses and Anderson Valley with only four wins - but this might be simply a ruse by the wily Coach Espinoza to lull the Cardinals into a false sense of security today - to then slam home a Panther victory tonight.
Mendo has all the advantages "on paper" - but Vegas oddsmakers wouldn't dare set odds on the contests today. You simply NEVER know what will happen in Mendo vs AV games.
Here is the history of the two teams. What you can't tell from the historical record, unless you were at the games, is for three seasons 2014, 2015 & 2016 Mendocino beat Anderson Valley in "pre-season" only to have AV sweep Mendo during league play - when it really counts. Last season, Mendo had the "sweep" - but it took a superhuman effort - and a foul on the Panthers with less than a second on the clock in the final period - and a Nakai Baker foul shot - to make that a reality.
MSP PHOTOS--Coach Luis Espinoza coaching the Panthers during the JV Jamboree in Point Arena earlier this month:
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UPDATE: CARDINALS PREVAIL 60-37 OVER ANDERSON VALLEY
In a game that started with a bizarre 6-3 score after 8 minutes of play, Mendo harnessed the Panthers big threat Alejandro Soto and managed to walk away from the Boonville game with a 60-37 victory. Unofficially, Cody Call scored a game-high 22 points (16 rebounds), Nakai Baker added 17 points (5 rebounds) with Cole Duncan starting the game with a “trey” then sitting out the third (with four fouls) only to explode for 9 points in the fourth ( 12 points on the night). Logan Gruys worked the boards as always and tossed in 5 points and the Mendocino bench got a lot of work. Alejandro Soto did end up with 18 points (he hit a couple beautiful “treys”) for Anderson Valley with JT Carlin working hard on the boards and scoring five of his 7 points in the fourth quarter.
MENDO (5-1) travels to Point Arena (4-1) Friday for a “must win” contest if they want to keep pace with undefeated Laytonville.
MENDO: 06 22 16 16 = 60
AV: 03 14 10 10 = 37
(Text & Photos, Courtesy, Mendocino Sports Plus)
PUDDING CREEK SUNSET ON THE BEACH
(Photo by Judy Valadao)
A DRAMATIC DEVELOPMENT at the Board of Supervisors Tuesday morning. Dramatic, that is, if you’re involved or interested in Mendocino County’s emergency medical and fire services. It began with this short note in CEO Carmel Angelo’s CEO Report:
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) — Coastal Valley Emergency Medical Services and Mendocino County have decided to research other models for EMS delivery systems. We will be meeting with the State to determine options. The timeline for this change is December 31, 2018.”
During Ms. Angelo’s discussion of the subject at the Tuesday Supes meeting, Ms. Angelo explained that the current “model” — i.e., subcontracting out Mendo’s emergency services administration functions to Sonoma County’s Coastal Valley EMS — isn’t working for Mendo and the problem was made clearer during the Redwood Fire Complex in October when Coastal Valley was unable to do much of anything for Mendo due to the high volume of emergency and disaster activity in Sonoma County at the time.
Last week the Anderson Valley Emergency Services Committee wrote a pointed letter asking why the Ambulance Service Exclusive Operating Area Request for Proposals was taking so long: theava.com/archives/78075#3
And this week we heard that Mendo intends to discontinue its arrangement with Coastal Valley. In that letter last week the AV group noted that the alleged reason for the delay — Coastal Valley had said the package had to go back to the State for re-review because the County had decided to retain CalFire as the emergency services dispatch operation — couldn’t apply because the Mendo Supes had directed that two separate RFPs be prepared, one for Ambulance Service and one for Dispatch. The Ambulance Service RFP should not have been affected by the dispatch discussion and should not have needed any further review by the State.
AND BACK IN NOVEMBER around the time the Redwood Complex Fires were just being extinguished, we wrote:
WHERE’S COASTAL VALLEY EMS? In all the depressing excitement of the Redwood/Potter Fire Emergency, we’re not the only ones wondering where the County’s Emergency Medical Services Agency has been. Mendocino County contracts with the Sonoma County office to manage emergency services (typically ambulance service). And clearly there were special challenges for all emergency responders during the fires. But we can’t find anything CVEMS contributed. What, if anything, should they contribute? Several local fire officials are mulling the question and are talking about asking Official Mendo to spell out exactly what we’re supposed to be getting for the nice nickel we pay them.
* * *
AT ONE POINT Tuesday during CEO Angelo’s discussion of her intention to look for another “model,” she added that “it is mutually agreed that we need to look at this model and quite possibly this is a model that will not work going forward.”
Angelo added that she is meeting with the state emergency services office to discuss options. Then it will come back to the Board. “We do have an agreement that this model is not working,” said Angelo, “and will not work going forward. The rumors out there are flying, as you can imagine.”
We don’t know which “rumors” are flying, nor that there even were any. We have certainly heard some grumbling about Coastal Valley as occasionally uncooperative, high-handed and not taking Mendo emergency services seriously. “I have been talking to some fire chiefs and EMS providers,” Angelo continued, “and have scheduled a meeting at the request of some of the fire chiefs for Thursday to talk about this and discuss what we plan to do going forward.”
It can be hard for small rural counties to set up their Emergency Management Authority and that’s why Mendo subcontracted to Sonoma County in the first place twelve years ago. Angelo said she is looking at other counties to possibly join with, or a stand-alone authority or a hybrid with fire services. “Coastal Valley and Mendo want to do what’s in the best interest of Mendocino County,” insisted Angelo.
Supervisor Carre Brown asked Angelo about the status of the Exclusive Operating Area Agreement.
Angelo replied that it has to go back to the state “because of the change we were proposing. That is also a topic for discussion.” (The only change being discussed is Mendo discontinuing its arrangement with Coastal Valley)
Angelo then added, “I don’t believe there has been any work done [on the EOA] since October by Coastal Valley.”
Prompting Supervisor McCowen to ask, “Did you just say Coastal Valley has done nothing to take that issue to the state since the last board action?”
Angelo: “To my knowledge there has been no movement to discuss this with the state. I do believe there has been no movement to discuss that with the state at this time.”
McCowen: “Since they were as I understand it completely unavailable during the fires, it almost becomes a breach of contract question for us. Is Coastal Valley doing anything for us currently?”
Angelo replied that they’re still doing the routine things having to do with EMS certifications, updated protocols, etc. But, “I would like to look past the last couple months and look at the last twelve years.” Angelo pointed out that Coastal Valley continues doing day to day activities. “But they were not available to be here during our disaster. I believe the answer is no. But realistically, we did not have the medical emergency they had in Sonoma County.” … “What you’re [McCowen] saying is the reason we are looking at an amicable split with Coastal Valley.” … “The EOA is the challenge. I will be meeting with the state in the next 30 days between changing the model and removing Mendocino County from Coastal Valley’s. And our other priority with the state is the Exclusive Operating Area which we know we need.”
WE’VE LONG THOUGHT that whatever services Coastal Valley was providing could be handled by a small expansion of the Sheriff’s small but effective “Office of Emergency Services” using some of the funds now allocated to Coastal Valley. (We’ve heard Mendo’s been paying about $90k a year for Coastal Valley, but have not seen an official number.)
That office’s website says, “The Office of Emergency Services (OES) coordinates the overall county response to disasters. OES is responsible for alerting and notifying appropriate agencies when disaster strikes; coordinating all agencies that respond; ensuring resources are available and mobilized in times of disaster; developing plans and procedures for response to and recovery from disasters; and developing and providing preparedness materials for the public. OES provides for coordination of plans and programs countywide to ensure protection of life and property.”
THE COUNTY IS ALSO supposedly looking at combining or consolidating dispatch services in the County.
BACK IN OCTOBER in the aftermath of the big fires we wrote:
SUPERVISORS Carre Brown and Dan Hamburg refused to volunteer to be considered for the ad hoc committee on combining Ukiah and County dispatch to save some money for both agencies. Readers may recall that Sonoma County-based Coastal Valley EMS, the agency that the Board has blindly turned emergency services over to lock-stock&barrell, tried to push through a dispatch RFP and privatization schedule until Supervisor Gjerde got back from vacation and convinced Supervisor Georgeanne Croskey that putting Calfire’s local Dispatch operation out to bid was a bad idea. So Croskey changed her earlier vote for the RFP and joined Gjerde and McCowen in postponing the Dispatch RFP indefinitely. But Hamburg and Brown, citing a version of staff-right-or-wrong, streadfastly refused to reconsider — even when faced with a phalanx of local firefighters and cops who explained in detail why privatizing Dispatch was a very bad idea.
IN EXPLAINING this week why she had no interesting in saving the County and the City of Ukiah some dispatch money by consolidation, Brown specifically referred to last week’s 3-2 vote to hold off on the Dispatch RFP, adding that she was sure Supervisor Hamburg felt the same way. “Thank you, Supervisor Brown,” replied Hamburg, indicating his solidarity with Brown’s nonsensical and petty refusal. In the end Supervisors McCowen and Croskey were appointed to the dispatch ad hoc committee, but not until Brown and Hamburg had reminded the other three Supes that they had no intention of participating in the “cooperative” manner they always talk about.
* * *
WE’LL PROBABLY KNOW MORE after the Thursday meeting that Ms. Angelo plans to have with those local fire chiefs. For now we’ve already heard that they do not want to wait until December of 2018 for the change to be made.
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “My friend Lar wrote this just for me:"
a real realist
with a real tale to tell
and a real tail to tell it with
ODD as it may seem to people unfamiliar with Mendocino County Public Radio, but Larry Minson’s public complaints about the functioning of station management is the first public complaint from a disgusted station insider since the station’s murky beginnings a quarter-century ago. Two recent hires, a manager and a program director, simply fled, referring vaguely to a “toxic environment” at KZYX’s Philo headquarters. I’d say toxic and, over the years, often creepy. The nut of the problem at the station, apart from a full generation of self-interested nuts who glommed on to the enterprise at its non-public founding by a hustling entrepreneur called Sean Donovan, is the closed nature of the enterprise. It’s always been a publicly-funded private club presided over by a rubber stamp board of trustees but run by a cringing claque of station employees and entrenched programmers, many of whom boast that they "speak truth to power." As an at-large candidate for the KZYX board who has no hope of election, here’s what I would hold out for if, by some fluke, I found myself partially responsible for the station’s cooked books and its recumbent staff:
- An end to the station’s lengthy blacklist
- An honest, fully explained budget
- The combining of the positions of general manager and program director into one position for one salary
- A morning news hour focused entirely on local matters, thus giving locals a reason to tune in, thus expanding the membership (static for years now)
- Increased visibility of the station beyond the in-County lib-pwog echo chamber it presently is
- Term limits for programmers and a requirement that they pay the station $20 a month for air time
- Prompt, candid replies from management to all inquiries
- A requirement that each board member bring in at least one new member every month
- A working person’s membership at $20 a year
- Basic civility from all employees
JIM UPDEGRAFF comments: "The letter from Mr. Minson certainly dealt with the concerns I previously expressed to you about the station management. The advice from Mr. Minson’s lawyer to resign was sound advice. It would be wise of the other members of the Board to discuss the concerns of Mr. Minson with their lawyers. Generally, directors of a non-profit are legally protected from lawsuits; however, under certain circumstances the Chinese Wall can be penetrated. Also, if I was the lender, I would be concerned. KZYX is a non-profit and must comply with the rules and regulations of the Registry of the Charitable Trusts division of the CA Attorney General. The IRS 990s are available for review. Bruce, you might have one of your attorney friends help you in asking for a copy. Also available is a complaint form pdf. The Registry takes their responsibilities very seriously and I am sure they will have a concern with management and board of the station."
NOT TO INSULT my old sparring mate, Gordy Black, and I'm half-sorry I messed with him in the first place, but I expected him to get it when I asked him to be my Coast campaign manager in my run for the roses, er, the KZYX board of directors.
GORDY WROTE BACK: "I am sincerely honored, but your candidacy is so problematic that I personally would fall into absurdity promoting it. If you were straight in behalf of the station, you’d be interesting and maybe valuable. But your attendant friends cost a lot of time, grief, and money. Meanwhile, the paper is splendid, the writing and writers unmatched. Thanks for asking, and I mean it."
I WONDER if Meg Courtney might go to bat for me out there in the fog belt. She's not only a former trustee but might help me with the Appropriate Police.
ELECTIONS, KZYX STYLE
Hola, KZYX Trustees, whoever you might be: No one at Philo headquarters can tell me who has signed up to run, and your general manager? Well, I left him a message… And, when exactly do the ballots go out?
Bruce Anderson, Boonville
* * *
Dear Bruce Anderson,
Thank you for your inquiries.
The Mendocino County Public Broadcasting board of directors election is organized by the board, with logistical support from the station staff. The KZYX general manager and staff are not authorized to disclose nominations or discuss election or other operational matters with candidates or nominees. The nomination period closes on 30 January 2018, after which the list of nominations can be made public.
Under federal and state rules governing FCC-licensed public radio stations and 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporations, Mendocino County Public Broadcasting is required to prepare and make public an IRS Form 990 Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax, an annual independent audit and an audited financial report to the federal Corporation For Public Broadcasting, which funds the station’s Community Service Grant. The station’s budget is prepared by the board treasurer and finance committee in consultation with the general manager and staff. The board approves the budget in a public meeting, one of six public board meetings scheduled over the course of the year. Documentation of those public filings and public meetings is posted on the station website.
Thank you for your support.
The Board of Directors
Mendocino County Public Broadcasting
RENOWNED AUTHOR URSULA LE GUIN DIED on Monday, her son said. She was 88 years old.
Le Guin authored dozens of short stories, novels and essays which focused mostly on science fiction. “If you cannot or will not imagine the results of your actions, there’s no way you can act morally or responsibly,” Le Guin once said during an interview with The Guardian. Her work also took on feminist themes, and one of her most popular novels, “The Left Hand of Darkness,” featured characters on a planet where gender did not exist.
RE LEGAL POT, a reader writes: "I hope the black market thrives in Cali. I'm on disability and use mmj. I didn't have the money to pay for it before the taxes were piled on. I sure as hell don't have it now. I have had to grow my supply because of costs. California now has a BUDGET SURPLUS and they keep piling the taxes on. Everyone in the game is driven by greed. The growers as well as the politicians. Nobody really gives a rat's ass about medical, especially now we have rec. It has never been about helping people, just about lining pockets. The dispensary I use is doing rec sales now too. I'm about to go to the black market to get my plants because I am so disgusted with the situation."
* * *
REACTION TO STOREFRONT DOPE PRICES
UKIAH FIRE CHIEF ON ADMINISTRATIVE LEAVE
by Justine Frederiksen
The Division Chief who served as interim chief of the Ukiah Valley Fire Authority for nearly a year is currently on administrative leave, Ukiah City Manager Sage Sangiacomo reported.
“Division Chiefs Jeff Adair and Kevin Jennings have been filling in as acting fire chief as (Division Chief Kirk Thomsen) in on administrative leave,” Sangiacomo told the City Council at its last meeting. “(Adair and Jennings) have been doing a great job filling in, but we are working to get them administrative assistance in the near future.
“My hat is off to the department for working short-staffed though this period of time, and we do hope to be fully staffed here shortly,” he continued.
Thomsen had been serving as interim chief since mid-January 2017 following the abrupt retirement of former chief John Bartlett in late 2016. Thomsen was placed on leave in mid-December for undisclosed reasons.
“I cannot comment on personnel matters,” Sangiacomo said when asked why Thomsen was not serving in his position. When asked if an investigation was being conducted, Sangiacomo said he could “neither confirm nor deny” whether that was the case.
Last fall, an employee of the UVFA said his department was handling several extensive Public Information Requests, including one that asked for a large amount of the text messages sent and received by Thomsen. It is unclear at this time why those messages were requested or if they are related to Thomsen being on leave.
When asked how much longer Thomsen was expected to remain on leave, Sangiacomo again said he could not comment except to say that the city and the Ukiah Valley Fire District, who have been working together in an informal merger the past few years, have two chief positions they are trying to fill: one a third division chief and one department chief.
When asked if Thomsen would still be considered as permanent chief, Sangiacomo could say only that the hiring of a department chief was a process being conducted by both the city and the fire district that had yet to be completed.
In December, the UVFA responded to 249 calls, one third of which were in the district’s jurisdiction and two-thirds of which were in the city limits, Adair reported to the City Council at its Jan. 17 meeting.
Of those calls, five were vehicle accidents and one was a structure fire. An average of two volunteers per call responded.
(Photo by Dick Whetstone)
OBJECTS TO SILVER COVERAGE
I feel compelled to write you concerning your reporter on the Silver case. He has a truly biased position and claims to be reporting fact when in truth I have rarely seen him in the courtroom and his comments certainly reflect that. How could he have heard all the evidence without being there? It seems that he is only interested in information about the participants so that he can make slanderous remarks like some bad late night show host. Well he is not funny and he doesn’t have his facts right and he has truly prejudiced people against the defendant and his lawyer and case. The last remark about the prediction that Caleb would murder his lawyer in the New Year has caused some people to call us concerning his remark.
Please feel free to call me concerning this reporter and the trial.
CATCH OF THE DAY, January 23, 2018
PETER ANDERSON, Ukiah. Domestic battery.
PATRICIA LOZANO-CORONA, Willits. Domestic battery.
JOSE MALDONADO, Willits. Under influence, probation revocation.
ELIAS RUTHERFORD, Laytonville. Controlled substance, mail theft, getting credit with someone else’s ID, receiving stolen property, paraphernalia.
THOUSANDS OF FIRE VICTIMS AWAITING COSTLY PG&E BILLS
PG&E has temporarily suspended billing for 6,500 customers that lost homes or businesses in the October wildfires. Some have moved into new homes and are bracing for hefty charges when the bills resume.
THE 9/11 CONSPIRACY NUTS
August Bebel once called anti-Semitism the socialism of fools. These days, the 9/11 conspiracy fever is fast becoming the "socialism" of the left.
by Alexander Cockburn (September 2006)
You trip over one fundamental idiocy of the 9/11 conspiracy nuts in the first paragraph of the book by one of their high priests, David Ray Griffin, The New Pearl Harbor. "In many respects," Griffin writes, "the strongest evidence provided by critics of the official account involves the events of 9/11 itself…. In light of standard procedures for dealing with hijacked airplanes…not one of these planes should have reached its target, let alone all three of them."
The operative word here is "should." One central characteristic of the nuts is that they have a devout, albeit preposterous, belief in American efficiency, and hence many of them start with the racist premise that "Arabs in caves" weren’t capable of the mission. They believe that military systems work the way Pentagon press flacks and aerospace salesmen say they should work. They believe that at 8:14 am, when AA Flight 11 switched off its radio and transponder, an FAA flight controller should have called the National Military Command center and NORAD. They believe, citing reverently (this from high priest Griffin) "the US Air Force’s own website," that an F-15 could have intercepted AA Flight 11 "by 8:24, and certainly no later than 8:30."
They appear to have read no military history, which is too bad because if they had they’d know that minutely planned operations–let alone responses to an unprecedented emergency–screw up with monotonous regularity, by reason of stupidity, cowardice, venality and other whims of Providence.
According to the minutely prepared plans of the Strategic Air Command, an impending Soviet attack would have prompted the missile silos in North Dakota to open and the ICBMs to arc toward Moscow and kindred targets. The tiny number of test launches actually attempted all failed, whereupon SAC gave up testing. Was it badly designed equipment, human incompetence, defense contractor venality or… conspiracy? Did the April 24, 1980, effort to rescue the hostages in the US Embassy in Tehran fail because a sandstorm disabled three of the eight helicopters, or because agents of William Casey poured sugar into their gas tanks in yet another conspiracy?
Do the military’s varying attempts to explain why F-15s didn’t intercept and shoot down the hijacked planes stem from predictable attempts to cover up the usual screw-ups, or because of conspiracy? Is Mr. Cohen in his little store at the end of the block hiking his prices because he wants to make a buck, or because his rent just went up, or because the Jews want to take over the world? Bebel said anti-Semitism is the socialism of fools. These days the 9/11 conspiracy fever is fast becoming the "socialism" of the left.
My in-box overflows each day with fresh "proofs" of how the towers were demolished. I meet people who start quietly, asking me what I think about 9/11. What they are actually trying to find out is whether I’m part of the coven. I imagine it is like being a normal Stoic in the second century AD going for a stroll in the forum and meeting some fellow asking, with seeming casualness, whether it’s possible to feed 5,000 people on five loaves of bread and a couple of fish.
Indeed, at my school the vicar used to urge on us Frank Morison’s book Who Moved the Stone? It demonstrated, with exhaustive citation from the Gospels, that since on these accounts no human had moved the stone from in front of Joseph of Arimathea’s tomb, it must have been an angel who rolled it aside, so Jesus could exit, astonish the mourners and then ascend. Of course, Morison didn’t allow the possibility that angels never existed or that the Gospel writers were making it up.
It’s the same pattern with the 9/11 nuts. There are photos of the impact of the "object" that hit the Pentagon–i.e., the Boeing 757, Flight 77–that seem to show the sort of hole a missile might make. Ergo, it was a missile and a 757 didn’t hit the Pentagon. As regards the hole, my brother Andrew–writing a book about Rumsfeld–has seen photos taken within thirty minutes of impact clearly showing the outline of an entire plane, including wings. This was visible as soon as the smoke blew away.
And if it was a missile, what happened to the 757? Did the conspirators shoot it down somewhere else, or force it down and then kill the passengers? Why plan to demolish the towers with pre-placed explosives if your conspiracy includes control of the two planes that hit them? Why bother with the planes at all? Why blame Osama if your fall guy is Saddam Hussein?
The demolition scenario is classic who-moved-the-stonery. The towers didn’t fall because they were badly built as a consequence of corruption, incompetence, regulatory evasions by the Port Authority and because they were struck by huge planes loaded with jet fuel. No, they collapsed because Dick Cheney’s agents methodically planted demolition charges in the preceding days. It was a conspiracy of thousands, all of whom–party to mass murder–have held their tongues ever since.
Of course, the buildings didn’t suddenly pancake. People inside who survived the collapse didn’t hear a series of explosions. As discussed in Wayne Barrett and Dan Collins’s marvelous Grand Illusion, about Rudy Giuliani and 9/11, helicopter pilots radioed warnings nine minutes before the final collapse of the South Tower that it might well go down, and similar warnings, repeatedly, as much as twenty-five minutes before the North Tower’s fall.
What Barrett and Collins brilliantly show are the actual corrupt conspiracies on Giuliani’s watch—
— the favoritism to Motorola, which saddled the firemen with radios that didn’t work; the ability of the Port Authority to scrimp on fire protection; the mayor’s catastrophic failure in the years before 9/11 to organize an effective emergency command, meaning that many lives could have been saved, cops and firemen could have communicated and firemen could have heard the helicopter warnings and the Mayday messages that saved most of the police. That’s the real world, in which Giuliani and others have never been held accountable. Instead, the conspiracy nuts have combined to produce a ludicrous distraction.
"LEMME OUT--I'll Stay, I Promise!"
WATERSHED CAPS ON CULTIVATION
by Jim Shields
Water Districts throughout five critical watersheds were put on notice last week by the State Water Resources Control Board (Water Board) that, “Through a coordinated effort between the Water Board and California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, the following five priority stream systems have been identified as a starting point for the California Water Action Plan (WAP) effort:
- South Fork Eel River, tributary to the Eel River, Humboldt and Mendocno Counties
- Shasta River, tributary to the Klamath River, Siskiyou County
- Mark West Creek, tributary to the Russian River, Sonoma County
- Mill Creek, tributary to the Sacramento River, Shasta and Tehama Counties
- Ventura River, Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties”
You probably don’t need me to explain to you that these five watershed systems are the primary regions of the state where cannabis is grown.
Here’s how the Water Board explains it:
“The Water Board and CDFW are currently working to identify potential actions that may be taken to enhance and establish instream flow for anadromous fish in these five priority streams and other streams of importance for the WAP objectives. The development of hydrologic characterization models is one of the first efforts that the Water Board will work on to better understand water supply, water demand, and instream flow needs in the priority watersheds… In recent years, flows have been decreasing due to extended dry periods in winter and early spring, as well as increases in legal and illegal water diversions. There are many surface diversions and groundwater wells associated with rural residences, Cannabis culitivation, pastures, crops, and municipal water systems. Since the legalization of Cannabis, cultivation of the crop has expanded dramatically in the basin, and is associated with increased water diversions.”
Honing in on the North Coast, the Water Board cites a study by NOAA Fisheries regarding water consumption by cultivators: “Mendocino and Humboldt Counties are home to some of the largest Cannabis growing operations in California, which have been increasing in number and scale during recent years. The consumptive demand for Cannabis farms impact summer stream flows during low-flow periods. This altered hydrologic function is one of the most critical stressor for juvenile salmonoids in the South Fork Eel River watershed, particularly in more urbanized areas such as the Salmon Creek and Redwood Creek watersheds where Cannabis cultivation coincides with domestic usage.
In a previous column, I warned folks that the Water Board is in the process of basically “locking down” watersheds by restricting how much marijuana can be grown on a sustainable basis, watershed by watershed. It appears the Water Board is moving in the direction of establishing a cap on licenses and permits based on watershed sustainability That’s why they are requiring water districts, including the one I manage, to provide them with all this hydrological data.
Erin Ragazzi, an assistant deputy director for the State Water Board’s Division of Water Rights and Water Quality Certification, said in a Water Deeply interview, “Well, I think one of the things that’s important to point out is that the policy creates a comprehensive mechanism to regulate cannabis cultivation, and it includes both those water supply, water rights side and water quality components. Specifically, I think it’s important to note we have a lot of important requirements to address individual and cumulative impacts that can occur in watersheds, and that’s been a big concern for a lot of folks, in terms of not just the site-specific impacts but the broader cumulative impacts in a watershed.
“To that end, that policy includes requirements establishing maximum diversion rate, a forbearance period when no diversions can occur and instream flow requirements so that even when you’re in the season of diversion, you can always divert when flows are above that instream flow requirement. So there’s a pretty comprehensive look at ensuring that we’re not seeing the impacts associated with diversion and use of water, while at the same time allowing folks a pathway to get a storage water right, which often would take a very long period of time … There’s the potential to have a limited number of plant identifiers and licenses issued by the various entities, and so those folks that come forward earlier are going to be in a better position than folks that may stand on the sidelines and wait for a while.”
I think that’s a pretty strong message to cultivators, but you have to wonder if any of them are listening, or even care.
(Jim Shields is the Mendocino County Observer’s editor and publisher, and is also the long-time district manager of the Laytonville County Water District. Listen to his radio program “This and That” every Saturday at 12 noon on KPFN 105.1 FM, also streamed live: http://www.kpfn.org)
ANYBODY GOT A PLACE FOR AL?
A guy out of the ordinary—
Trying to find a place for me and my tools and trucks and motorhome seems to be impossible task. Most telling me i got too much, and without my tools of my trade i would be a useless handyman. My present place of stay is not by choice and now i'm desperate to move away to get away from a growing controlling situation just for my stay. I'm now starting to think to sell it all, everything just to be able to move away. I like doing my handyman work helping others as well as it's helping me to survive some. Securing it all is now becoming a burden, a burden i'm getting tired of thinking of and doing.
Al Nunez" <email@example.com>
MENDOCINO COUNTY SOCCER ACADEMY
Director of Coaching and Academy Operations
Mendocino County Soccer Academy (MCSA)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
America’s political system won’t be, and can’t be, the source of any solutions. We don’t have political parties; merely rival factions of Oligarchy. 60 years ago, the Democrats were the enemies of Civil Rights, which was championed by Republicans. The parties rather abruptly switched polarities in 1968. That wasn’t the first time by a long shot, and it certainly hasn’t been the last time.
If we had actual political parties, with ideologies, we could make some choices about the options facing America. Since instead we vote for personalities and advertising packages, once in office politicians can do whatever they want among themselves, according to which faction of Oligarchy has the upper hand at a given moment.
The most important consideration for all factions of Oligarchy, and their coalitions working more or less together under the umbrella of “party,” is to make sure nobody examines or analyzes our collapsing system of economics and finance. Particularly finance.
Whichever faction of Oligarchy you root for, you have to acknowledge that a fiat system that uses debt at interest as money has to have infinite inputs of money, resources, markets, and energy. We live on a finite planet, subject to laws of nature. Therefore only money can be made infinite, by making it abstract. Since our system of economy has to always expand, or the interest can never be repaid, and we can’t artificially inflate resources, markets or energy, we have to inflate the money.
We’ve reached a point where there’s no more real expansion to be had. The oligarchs don’t want to inflate away the value of the money they’ve cadged from the system, so they have to extract ever more from those who have ever less of it left. This is the same situation, in human terms, we face with carbon-based energy, which is rapidly approaching the point at which it takes more energy to extract than it supplies.
This is a point where decline accelerates exponentially, because it has to. The Oligarchs cannot allow a critical mass of people to notice this and observe what it means. So we get increasingly frantic distractions. One faction plays to those at the bottom of the ladder, inciting them to blame immigrants, city dwellers, non-whites and uppity women for the fact the Oligarchy has looted them. The other faction plays to immigrants, city dwellers, non-whites and uppity women, inciting them to blame poor dumb whites without skills.
Both factions agree that nearly a majority of Americans simply can’t compete on a level playing field, and need a system of arbitrary discrimination and favoritism just to get by, as they have no skills, no ability or willingness to think analytically and critically, and want an Authority figure to take care of them and tell them what to do and think.
Control of this collapsing system has become cemented in the hands of feuding Oligarchs, and may they have great joy of it as it collapses.
For the rest of us, we need to put increasing effort to the task of keeping on the good side of the system, as it lashes out in its death agony to ensnare as many of us, and what’s left of our wealth, to stall the inevitable for smaller and smaller increments of time. We need to stick together, work together, and tune out the incitements of the Oligarchs, which can’t withstand any critical scrutiny no matter what the claim.
All one needs to consider is how the Democratic Party faction of Oligarchy has systematically chased out the most popular politician in America, whose positions most accurately reflect the opinions and values of a large majority of Americans. Instead, they rigged the process in favor of the only politician in the nation who could have lost to the second-worst candidate ever put forward by a major party for major office in American history. And now they’re looking to double down, by finding their own show-biz billionaire fictional scripted character. There are very few people from any walk of life who could lose to Donald Trump in 2020, so it will take hard work by the Democrats to find one such. Michelle Obama apparently declined the opportunity, and Oprah Winfrey probably will soon.
The key is to not be in power on the approaching day when a critical mass of Americans simply don’t show up to play their part in the collapse of Empire and our financial system, fatally flawed from the start.
All the “issues” people discuss on a daily basis with so much mimickry of passion are actually desperate efforts to avoid noticing, understanding and addressing the fundamental crisis of our system as it falls apart.
I GRIND OUT THE OLD TUNES on the old organ and gather up the coppers. — Bret Harte
THE ABALONE SONG
Oh! some folks boast of quail on toast,
Because they think it's tony;
But I'm content to owe my rent,
And live on abalone.
We sit around and gaily pound,
And hold no acrimony,
Because our object is a gob
Of toothsome abalone.
He hides in caves beneath the waves —
His ancient patrimony,
And so, 'tis shown that faith alone
Reveals the abalone.
The more we take, the more they make
In deep sea matrimony;
Race suicide cannot betide
The fertile abalone.
— George Sterling (probably)
DINNER AT LOUIS
San Francisco, 1906
First on the bill of fare was the soup — thick and good. Next, one of Louis' three cherubic little sons brought on a course of fish — sole, rock cod, flounders or smelt — with a good French sauce. The third course was meat. This came on en bloc; the waiter dropped in the center of each table a big roast or boiled joint together with a mustard pot and two big dishes of vegetables. Each guest manned the carving knife in turn and helped himself to his satisfaction. After that, Louis, with an air of ceremony, brought on a big bowl of excellent salad which he had mixed himself. For beverage, there stood by each plate a perfectly cylindrical pint glass filled with new claret. The meal closed with fruit in season — all that the guest cared to eat. The price was fifteen cents!
— Jack London
PUBLIC WORKSHOP ADDRESSING THE ECONOMICS OF FISHING ON CLEAR LAKE.
Lake County Fish and Wildlife Advisory Committee
And The University of California Cooperative Extension – Lake County Present a public workshop addressing the Economics of Fishing on Clear Lake.
Date: Wednesday, January 31
Time: 6:30 pm
Location: Board of Supervisors Chambers, Lakeport.
Understanding the economic value of angling on Clear Lake: Greg Giusti, University of California, emeritus
Tapping into the Economic Potential of Lake County Fishing Tourism: Tiffany Harz, MBA, Marymount College
IN ITS NEWLY RELEASED annual State of World Inequality report, Oxfam detailed that 82% of all wealth created in 2017 went to just 10% of the world's citizens.
Meanwhile, In Davos:
PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING AGENDA for February 1, 2018, is posted on the department website at: mendocinocounty.org/government/planning-building-services/meeting-agendas/planning-commission
Please contact staff with any questions.
Victoria Davis, Commission Services Supervisor, 707-234-6664
VISIT WORLD-RENOWN OLIVER RANCH ON APRIL 8
Cloverdale Arts Alliance organizes tour of picturesque, 100-acre “sculpture ranch”
Cloverdale, January 23, 2018 – Much-coveted tickets to tour the world-renown Oliver Ranch are now on sale through the Cloverdale Arts Alliance.
Located in the heart of Sonoma County, overlooking the Alexander Valley, the Oliver Ranch is home to 18 remarkable site-specific sculptural installations, including Ann Hamilton’s The Tower, where commissioned dance, poetry, theater and music performances take place.
From the ranch’s first sculpture, Shepherd’s Muse by Judith Shea, which was commissioned in 1985, Steve and Nancy Oliver were motivated by a love of art, a desire to support artists, and also a wish to circumvent the "business" of art. Disillusioned with valuation in the world of art collecting, the Olivers decided to commission site-specific installations that could not be moved, and therefore, neither bought nor sold, thus putting the focus on the art itself, not its assessment.
As the ranch grew in acclaim, requests for tours grew and the Olivers saw that their ranch could benefit non-profit organizations. As a result, the Olivers now make tours available to non-profits who can then offer them as an auction item or on a cost-per-ticket basis.
“Tours are offered only a few times each year to a limited number of people,” said CAA Executive Director, Mark Tharrington. “The Arts Alliance is thrilled to be chosen as the non-profit to organize and benefit from this one-of-a-kind, art-centric tour.”
The tour will be Sunday, April 8, 2018. The cost is $65 for Cloverdale Arts Alliance members and $75 for non-members. The tour will be led by Steve Oliver or a trained docent and covers approximately 2.5 miles and 600 feet in elevation change. The tour is not wheelchair accessible and comfortable walking shoes are essential.
Participants will be taken to the Oliver Ranch aboard a tour bus, which will depart from the downtown Cloverdale Plaza at 9:30am. After the tour concludes, about 12:30pm, the group will be returned to Cloverdale.
The Cloverdale Arts Alliance is a non-profit arts organization bringing cultural arts to northern Sonoma County. CAA programs include Friday Night Live at the Plaza, Art Gallery, THE Jazz Club, Americana, Night, Music Workshops, Discovering Art Series, Art Classes, The Blues Session, and special events.
CHRIST CLIMBED DOWN
Christ climbed down
from His bare Tree
and ran away to where
there were no rootless Christmas trees
hung with candycanes and breakable stars
Christ climbed down
from His bare Tree
and ran away to where
there were no gilded Christmas trees
and no tinsel Christmas trees
and no tinfoil Christmas trees
and no pink plastic Christmas trees
and no gold Christmas trees
and no black Christmas trees
and no powderblue Christmas trees
hung with electric candles
and encircled by tin electric trains
and clever cornball relatives
Christ climbed down
from His bare Tree
and ran away to where
no intrepid Bible salesmen
covered the territory
in two-tone cadillacs
and where no Sears Roebuck crèches
complete with plastic babe in manger
arrived by parcel post
the babe by special delivery
and where no televised Wise Men
praised the Lord Calvert Whiskey
Christ climbed down
from His bare Tree
and ran away to where
no fat handshaking stranger
in a red flannel suit
and a fake white beard
went around passing himself off
as some sort of North Pole saint
crossing the desert to Bethlehem
in a Volkswagen sled
drawn by rollicking Adirondack reindeer
with German names
and bearing sacks of Humble Gifts
from Saks Fifth Avenue
for everybody’s imagined Christ child
Christ climbed down
from His bare Tree
and ran away to where
no Bing Crosby carolers
groaned of a tight Christmas
and where no Radio City angels
thru a winter wonderland
into a jinglebell heaven
daily at 8:30
with Midnight Mass matinees
Christ climbed down
from His bare Tree
and softly stole away into
some anonymous Mary’s womb again
where in the darkest night
of everybody’s anonymous soul
He awaits again
the very craziest
of Second Comings
WILLIAM RANDOLPH HEARST
by Ambrose Bierce (1888)
I found a young man, the youngest young man, it seemed to me, that I had ever confronted. His appearance, his attitude, his manner, his entire personality suggested extreme diffidence. I did not ask him in, instate him in my better chair (I had two) and inquire how we could serve each other. If my memory is not at fault I merely said, "Well," and awaited the result. "I am from the San Francisco Examiner," he explained in a voice like the fragrance of violets made audible, and backed a little away. "Oh," I said, "you come from Mr. Hearst." Then that unearthly child lifted its blue eyes and cooed: "I am Mr. Hearst."
TREATMENT PLANT DISCHARGES 4.4 MILLION GALLONS OF UNTREATED WASTEWATER INTO MONTEREY BAY
by Dan Bacher
How is that “iconic network of jewels of the sea” created under the “most open, transparent and inclusive process” in California history, according to Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative proponents, working out?
Not very well, it appears, if you consider a recent untreated wastewater spill that is likely to foul these so-called “marine protected areas” off the Monterey County coast, just like the Refugio Oil Spill fouled Santa Barbara County beaches and “marine protected areas” on May 20, 2015.
Approximately 4.4 million gallons of untreated wastewater have been discharged into the blue waters of Monterey Bay through an ocean outfall discharge pipe 2.5 miles off shore, the result of an “equipment control failure” at the Monterey One Water Regional Treatment Plant in Marina, California, on January 19 and 20.
As of January 22, Carmel Beach at Ocean Avenue, Monterey Municipal Beach, Lover's Point, the Beach at Monterey State Beach, San Carlos Beach, the beach at Sunset Drive at Asilomar, the beach at Spanish Bay and Stillwater Cove are closed.
These beaches will remain closed until samples indicate that the water is again safe for contact according to state guidelines. “All other beaches are open without restriction,” according to the Monterey County Health Department.
The department warns that contact with contaminated water may cause gastroenteritis and other water board illnesses.
This event occurred late Friday evening, January 19, and into the early morning hours of Saturday January 20.
“Because of this release, Monterey County Health Department immediately issued beach closures from Moss Landing to Stillwater Cove. The Health Department is advising the public not to have any ocean contact at this time,” according toPaul Sciuto, General Manager for Monterey One Water, in a press release.
Sciuto said five water samples from local beaches and eleven samples from the receiving surface water (RSW) surrounding the outfall pipe were obtained on Saturday. Sampling from the same local beach locations plus two more sites also occurred on Sunday.
“All eleven of the open ocean results from the Saturday sampling event were below the Ocean Plan limits for Total Coliform, E. coli and Enterococcus. For the five local beach samples taken on Saturday, only one sample (Monterey Wharf #2) had an elevated Enterococcus measurement of 108 MPN/100mL. The single sample limit for Enterococcus is 104 MPN/100mL,” Sciuto said.
“Sampling results for the seven local beach locations will be made available on Monday afternoon. The Agency is continuing to investigate the cause of this event and will post new information including additional sampling results on the Agency's website as soon as it becomes available,” he concluded.
Monterey Bay is unique in having one of the diverse marine ecosystems on the planet, since cold water species like Chinook salmon, rockfish and lingcod thrive in its waters, as well as warmer water species such as white seabass, bonito and barracuda, particularly during El Nino events. It also features one of the largest arrays of surfperch in its waters, including barred, silver, walleye, pile, rubberlipped, black, rainbow, striped and walleye perch.
"I find it interesting that you have to dig a little in all the reports that the spill was in Marina, not Monterey, actually," Frank Emerson, local angler and conservationist, commented. "It seems a little downplayed to me that it is severe pollution of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and that 'Protected' status under the MLPA designation does not really protect against actual threats to the habitat. It only regulates unfairly against the fishing public."
I will update this article as more information becomes available.
Information on beach closures can be found at www.mtyhd.org/beach or call 1- 800-347-6363.
THE EXSANGUINATION OF MEDICAL ETHICS
by Dr. Nayvin Gordon
For thousands of years physicians took oaths to always act in the patient’s best interest when providing care. At the heart of medical ethics, this moral code was passed down through the centuries and reaffirmed by The World Medical Association (WMA) in 1949 and again in 2006. Additionally they specified:”A physician shall not allow his/her judgment to be influenced by personal profit or unfair discrimination,” and “shall not receive any financial benefits or other incentives solely for referring patients or prescribing specific products.”
Medical ethics ran head long into The HMO (Health Maintenance Organization) Act of 1973. The passage of this act set the stage for the undermining of long established medical ethics. The HMO Act was designed specifically to reduce costs, by charging patients a monthly fee for a set package of health care. The Act was passed with the knowledge that there had been no systematic analysis done to show that it would not negatively impact health care. None the less, the Government gave million of dollars in direct financial assistance to develop the HMO which was designed to be a profit making business.
This HMO economic arrangement put the physicians and other health care providers’ financial interest into conflict with the needs of their patients. The monthly pot of money must provide for profit, salaries, wages and health care. If too much is spent on the patients, there is less available for profit and wages. So began the Health Insurance, Corporate Medicine assault on medical ethics.
Did the Medical Profession fight to hold on to its ethics so as to always “act in the patient’s best interest when providing medical care”? No. Tragically the Medical Profession succumbed to the rise of Corporate Health Care by betraying their core medical ethic and became complicit “stewards” of an economic system that puts profits before people—The AMA’s (American Medical Association) Principles of Medical Ethics:V11, gives the following ethical guidelines for physicians: “Mitigate possible conflicts between physicians financial interests and patient interests by minimizing the financial impact of patient care decisions and the overall financial risk for individual physicians.”
We have experienced four decades of HMO’s negative effect on health care while they became the darlings of Wall Street earning billions of dollars for investors as health care was rationed by: denial of service, restricted benefits, cost cutting, patients dumping, overworked and underpaid staff, and plunging physician’s incomes.
The author D.H. Lawrence (1880-1930) appears to have anticipated these horrors, when he wrote: “The mosquito knows full well, small as he is he’s beast of prey. But after all he only takes his bellyful, he doesn’t put my blood in the bank.”
Fast Forward to the ACA (Affordable Care Act) of 2010- One of its chief goals was to “reduce the cost of health care” by giving “financial incentives” to providers for the “Value” they provide in health care. A value-based payment incentive was to be established by bundling payment for certain types of care. Forbes Magazine, advertised as ‘The Capitalist Tool’ stated, “Bundled payments are just price controls by another name—and as such will yield subpar care by encouraging insurers and providers to put their own financial interests above the medical needs of patients.” The ACA was passed with very little known about its effectiveness or risks to Patient Care.
Once again it is all about cost cutting. But now with the so called “Value Based Purchasing”, it is no longer about making profits for corporations, but spending less government money -- it is about getting more for the Governments shrinking dollars going to health care spending for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security Disability. The politicians want to “save” money, which in reality means to redistribute money, but the economics is similar. With some ten trillion dollars in tax cuts for the rich over the last seventeen years.
the US treasury has less available for social services as politicians continue to redirect a trillion dollars per year to the military--war industry without concerns that it is “costing the government too much.” The latest Republican Tax Reform Bill of 12/17 will suck out of Medicare an estimated $30 billion.
Bundled payments will shrink and the giant vice of shrinking payments, combined with rising costs (hospital profits, rising prices for supplies, drugs, medical equipment, etc.,) will inevitably squeeze the life blood out of both the patients and the health care providers.
The exsanguination of medical ethics has helped to bring us to this dangerous moment in history. We have witnessed a craven transformation of medical ethics when physicians, nurses and other health providers are clamoring to sign up for “Value-Based Bundled Care.”
The AMA has betrayed their ancient oath as healers, in service to an economic system that puts profits before people. While deadly epidemics of cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, violence and addiction haunt the nation, we have been led into a partnership with Dracula.
Dr. Nayvin Gordon
(Dr. Gordon is an Oakland Family Physician who has written many articles on Health and Politics. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)