- Major Storm
- Downturned Eyes
- MLK Celebration
- Walking Tour
- Chapel Donations
- Little Dog
- Hospital News
- Working Classes
- Shelter Specifics
- Flood Watch
- Killer Identified
- Crab Feed
- Tolerating Weed
- Ed Notes
- Tuxedo Bail
- Catching Aerius
- Ag Classes
- Yesterday's Catch
- Crowfoot Appointed
- 56 Sedan
- Pole Flipping
- 2020 Hopefuls
- Fire Survivors
- SOS Benefit
- Overthrowing Oligarchy
- Bolton Dangerous
- Maximum Rocknroll
- Complicated Signs
- Sweeney Conjecture
A MAJOR WINTER STORM will hammer much of California today and tomorrow. A wind advisory (peaking this afternoon and evening) and flood watch (this evening through tomorrow morning) have been issued locally.
"Showers will become a steadier rain across northwest California today, as a strong storm approaches from offshore. Strong gusty winds will precede and accompany a cold front passing by this evening. Gusty winds and heavy downpours will persist Thursday, and high surf will impact the coast. Periods of rain will continue this weekend, followed by high pressure and drier weather next week." (National Weather Service)
APOLOGIES DUE TO MENDOCINO TV
While I see many errors in Rex Gresset's report on the Mendocino Coast District Hospital's Board of Directors Meeting on January 10, 2019, I am glad to see that he corrected his original article claiming that MCDH paid Mendocino TV to record these meetings, as we do this at our own expense and often involve more time and technical issues that people could not generally understand.
While I expect your ace reporter Malcolm MacDonald to correct Rex's mistakes, there is one liable remark I need to correct. Rex accuses Terry of "going to sleep" and "passing out," which is both unbelievably stupid and a reputation destroying accusation!! Terry is looking down, where to any idiot he may look like he is asleep because both the internet connection and the camera are run by applications on his phone! So his eyes are down-turned.
I put up the technical difficulties announcement because our switch to the Vimeo platform, rather than the expensive Livestream, has some quirks we are working out as it is also not as robust. We are also streaming it on our own paid phone account, not hardwired or using the MCDH access which is weak when you have an audience that are all on the network too!
This room also has a horrible audio hum and is compounded by a lack of amplification, especially given the new Board members and the people piping up from the audience without going to the podium, which I hope to educate soon.
We have spent literally hundreds of hours of unpaid work to bring these meetings to the community and I truly personally resent these mis-characterizations and lies about our work, much of it done by me. although Terry is the one who puts it up live.
Marianne McGee, Fort Bragg
MLK BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION
The coast will be celebrating Dr. King’s life and legacy on January 21, 2019. The Celebration begins at 11 a.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church (620 E Redwood at Corry). We will march downtown to commemorate Dr. King’s march from Selma to Montgomery. At noon, we will assemble back at Trinity to learn about Dr. King’s dream of equality and justice and imagine what he would say about current issues, especially immigration. A wholesome meal follows the program. We will be entertained by Ui Wesley, Danny Barca, Maria Ramos, and the Fort Bragg Freedom Singers. There is no fee to attend, but donations are welcome. Come join us. We look forward to celebrating with you. For more information, call 964-8985 or 937-0334, or visit: facebook.com/events/339103143355470/
John Fremont, firstname.lastname@example.org
HISTORIC MENDOCINO WALKING TOUR
The Kelley House Museum will provided guided walking tours of Historic Mendocino on Saturday, Sunday and Monday of Martin Luther King, Jr., weekend. Tours meet on the Albion Street porch and begin at 11AM. Cost is $10. Join our expert docents for a stroll past early pioneer homes, historic meeting places and buildings that make up the National Historic District -- along with lively commentary! The tour is suitable for all ages and lasts about 90 minutes. For more information, please visit: kelleyhousemuseum.org/walking-tours/
CHAPEL FIRE - DONATIONS UPDATE - HELP JULIE
For those who have requested a place to drop off a note, or a cash or check donation (rather than GoFundMe), the The Fort Bragg Fire Station has kindly agreed to be a drop off collection point until the Chapel re-opens. Thank you!! (We were using the DMV, but they are crazy busy…) Thank you Fire Dept!! More info below:
This weekend Julie and Pillie lost everything. Julie is the Manager and Director of Chapel by the Sea Funeral Home in Fort Bragg CA and lived in the apartment above the Chapel. Tragically the Chapel caught fire, and Julie and Pillie (Boston Terrier) suffered the loss of their home. Julie's kitties, canaries, and fish were also taken by the fire.
Julie is a kind and gentle soul, who has been there to help many people deal with the loss of their loved ones passing here on the coast. It is our hope that our community can return some of that compassion to her.
Unfortunately, Julie did not yet have renter's insurance in place as she had just moved into the apartment a week ago. She is not one to ask for help, but greatly needs it. She has only the clothes on her back and her dog.
Please help us give Julie and Pillie a new start. Thank you for your support!
This GoFundMe is being hosted by Nathan and Heather Dunn. Nathan works with Julie at Chapel by the Sea. Julie will be able to access these funds herself directly. Thank you for your support and generosity.
There is a GoFundme account set up for Julie at: gofundme.com/julie-and-pillie-start-again-fort-bragg-ca
Cash donations or Checks made out to "Julie Martin", can also be left at the Fort Bragg Fire Department.
Julie thanks you for your kindness but is not currently accepting any donations in person, as she needs time and space to deal with this overwhelming loss. Thank you for your understanding. Some people have asked to leave a note for Julie. Notes can be left on Go Fund Me or at the Fort Bragg Fire Station.
UPDATE: As of Monday evening our community has raised over $2000 toward our $7500 goal!
Please continue to get the word out there and THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
Heather Dunn, email@example.com
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Hiya, folks. Little dog and Skrag here just to say hello. I hope you're all well but I doubt Skrag cares one way or the other.”
The Mendocino Coast District Hospital's present CEO, Bob Edwards, and the former Chair of the hospital Board, Steve Lunde, are both defendants in a Federal lawsuit brought by the hospital’s former, high ranking, Human Resource Director, Ellen Hardin. Recently a Federal Judge adjudicated that Ms Hardin's case has merit and will move forward against the defendants, CEO Edwards and former Board Chair Lunde, as well as the hospital itself.
Ms Hardin brought the lawsuit as a last resort to protect hospital employees from harassment by the hospital CFO, Mark Sturgeon, who was hired and brought to our community by the CEO Bob Edwards. Dispute numerous, and very serious, complaints about CFO Sturgeon’s harassment of our hospital employees, Mr. Edwards took no action thereby allowing Sturgeon to continue his predatory behavior.
Finally, in order to protect the hospital employees, Ms. Hardin, the hospital’s Human Resource Director was compelled to initiate her Federal lawsuit. This harassment of MCDH employees by CFO Sturgeon and the cover up by CEO Edwards has demoralized hospital employees who have not felt safe in their working environment. Demoralized employees affect customer care in every business.
It is important to note here that prior to being hired by CEO Edwards, Mr. Sturgeon was fired from his last two hospital positions for harassing employees. News articles of Sturgeon's being fired for harassment are readily available on the Internet.
Furthermore, Mendocino Coast District Hospital (MCDH) has been hemorrhaging money for several years. Mendocino Coast District Hospital pays its CEO a compensation package worth over $350,000 and it is the CEO's job to operate the hospital in the black. The hospital has been operating in the red ever since the present CEO, Bob Edwards, took office. Since arriving all we hear from him are excuses for why our hospital is not successful.
It is time for MCDH to operate in the black even if it costs us a lot more than $350,000 for a CEO who will do so.
Our community deserves a successful hospital with great doctors, nurses and staff. Our community can have a rural hospital which will serve as a model of success.
It is imperative that the MCDH Board hire a CEO who knows how to operate a modern business, who can operate our hospital in the black and, of equal importance, will make our hospital a safe place, for employees and patients, that we can all trust and be proud of.
Richard Louis Miller, M.A., Ph.D. Clinical Psychology
CRITIQUING DR. MILLER (MISSING THE TRUTH)
Fact check on Dr. Miller’s letter “hospital news”
Thank you Margaret [Paul] and Dr. Miller. You are both very respected for your long term, honest and informed efforts to improve the hospital. You are not writing because it’s your job--a paid position-- as it is for the writer of the letter below.
And we who read the announce list already know that the former board was incompetent, (if you doubt this, see announcements before November about the need to replace board members as the only way to get the hospital running more effectively.) We, as a community, worked hard to get new, qualified board members. The hospital’s bylaws and articles that empower the board to act are merely words on paper, meaningless when the board is inadequate and does not act! (Anonymous listserve comment)
Vanlee Waters firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Truth is actually the best disinfectant (or a Fact check on Dr. Millers letter, “Hospital News”)
Miller: “Chair of the hospital Board, Steve Lunde,”
Fact: Name is Steve Lund.
Miller: “Ms. Hardin brought the law uit, as a last resort, to protect hospital employees from harassment by the hospital CFO, Mark Sturgeon”
Fact: MCDH board bylaws, Article vii, CEO shall…employ a chief financial Officer with the approval of the Board of Directors.
Miller: “who was hired and brought to our community by the CEO, Bob Edwards”
Fact: Sturgeon was only employed after vetting by members of the Finance Committee, the senior leaders, finance area leaders, human resources Background, and the board of directors.
Miller: “Dispute (misspelled) numerous, and very serious, complaints about CFO Sturgeon’s harassment of our hospital employees”
Fact: MCDH bylaws, Article vii, "the Board of Directors reserves the sole Right to terminate the CFO's employment contract.
Miller: “Mr Edwards took no action”
Fact: the board of directors investigated, with independent auditors, legal consultants, and employment law attorneys the complaints, and did not find any unlawful activities.
Miller: “Thereby allowing Sturgeon to continue his predatory behavior”
Fact: the word “predatory” was never used or received in the complaints from employees.
Miller: “This harassment”
Fact: This is a serious allegation, of which the hospital took seriously, did a proper, independent, investigation and did not find results of harrassment.
Miller: “of MCDH employees by CFO Sturgeon and the cover up by CEO Edwards”
Fact: Edwards participated in doing the required analysis of these serious allegations, and did not cover up anything.
Miller: “has demoralized hospital employees”
Fact: This wording is subjective, has no merit, and is not reflected in exit interviews nor the low employee turnover, currently well below both regional and nation standards.
Miller: “who have not felt safe”
Fact: Latest MCDH culture of safety survey results did not indicate our employees do not feel safe, but offer higher than average percentage Scores on teamwork in the work place.
Miller: “in their working environment. Demoralized employees effect customer care”
Fact: This is subjective and not indicated as a realistic description.
Miller: “Mr Sturgeon, was fired from his last two hospital positions for harassing employees”
Fact: This is not true, it is speculation, and is unfair to Mr Sturgeon.
Miller: “CEO a compensation package worth over $350,000”
Fact: Tthe current compensation for the MCDH CEO is below market.
Miller: “CEO's job to operate the hospital in the black”
Fact: The CEO is not the final decision on programs/services offered, nor the final or unilateral approver of the budget.
Miller: “The hospital has been operating in the red”
Fact: MCDH has not been fiscally able to keep up with equipment needs and infrastructure upgrades for more than a decade, thus leaving MCDH in greatineed before Edwards ever arrived.
Miller: “The hospital has been operating in the red ever since the present CEO”
Fact: during Mr. Edwards tenure, MCDH had one year of positive financial performance that was higher than any other bottom line over the last 15 years.
Miller: “Since arriving all we hear from him (Edwards) are excuses”
Fact: MCDH has been communicating about the replacement of critical equipment being put in place, including the automatic transfer switch, and the operating room HVAC, and the upgrade to the electronic medical record system, and hospital license threats.
Miller: “for why our hospital is not successful”
Fact: MCDH has made extraordinary efforts to recruit physicians, offer new services, and to do everything it could, at the direction of the board of directors to keep a ob program at our hospital.
Miller: “It is time for MCDH to operate in the black even if it costs us a lot more than $350,000 for a CEO who will do so.”
Fact: the real cost to finding a replacement CEO is the cost our community must undergo to change its culture of working together, accepting the challenge, and uniting behind the hard work it takes to keep a rural hospital moving forward.
Miller: “Our community deserves a successful hospital with great doctors, nurses and Staff”
Fact: We are well on the way to success, but will not be successful if a few citizens stand up and prevaricate to our community.
Vanlee F. Waters
Public Relations, Communications, & Marketing Director Mendocino Coast District Hospital email@example.com@mcdh.net 707-961-4961
FACT CHECK ON DR. MILLER’S LETTER - HOSPITAL NEWS
Dr. Miller's account of CEO Edwards part in the Hardin v. MCDH lawsuit is accurate, except for the misspelling of Steve Lund's name. Vanlee Waters is doing just what he did to me when I sent out an account of my meeting with Edwards to the Announce list. He substituted his own narrative of the meeting that had nothing to do with reality. To sum up Vanlee's absurd statements about the thorough vetting of Sturgeon, it simply didn't happen. Had Sturgeon been vetted, it would have immediately become clear that Sturgeon had been fired from his prior two jobs for harassment of employees—the same thing he did at MCDH that has resulted in the current multi-million dollar lawsuit against him, Lund, Edwards and MCDH. The Board would NEVER have hired Sturgeon had they been aware of his predatory history. Edwards salary is $362,000 per year. Saying it is "below market" is not denying Edward's salary; it's just a poor attempt at justification.
My thought. I don't know what the hospital is paying Vanlee for this garbage propagation, but whatever it is, it's too much.
Thank goodness we have four new, highly qualified Board members intent on bringing about the necessary changes to preserve our hospital.
Margaret Paul, Healthy Hospital Supporter
EMERGENCY WINTER SHELTER IN FORT BRAGG?
Hospitality Center is not open on week-ends. You only have to register once and it needs to be done Monday thru Friday. Those seeking shelter in the EWS must be pre-screened once per season. Pre-screening takes place at the Mendocino Coast Hospitality Center at 101 N Franklin Street Monday-Friday 9am-12pm or 1pm-3pm. Inquire at the reception desk. Due to funding restrictions, the EWS will not be serving meals on open nights this year. EWS participants should plan on attending the public meal at the Hospitality House, 237 N McPherson Street, at 3:PM Monday-Friday or utilize other community meal programs. EWS will provide a “bagged lunch” style meal on open nights that fall on a weekend. Open status may also be checked by phone by calling (707) 961-0172 option #1 or by visiting mendocinochc.org/ews.
MSP'S 'EYE ON THE NAVARRO RIVER'
GET READY FOR POSSIBLE HWY 128 CLOSURE!
Well, for the third time, NOAA has increased the projected river level and the latest shows the river exceeding the 23.0' flood stage that will force CalTrans to close Highway 128.
According to the forecast, the river level will hit flood stage around noon (24.0') then crest at 26.0' around 3:00 pm. It will dip below flood stage @ 6:00 pm.
This forecast, of course, can change a couple more times (either up or down) before the Wednesday storm hits.
WILLITS KILLER IDENTIFIED
UPDATED SHERIFF’S PRESS RELEASE (01-15-2019): On 01-15-2019 the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office Coroner's Division was able to locate and notify the suspect's next of kin and as a result his identity is being released to the public. The suspect has been identified as being Michael David Wilkins (49 year-old male from Willits).
CRAB FEED THIS SATURDAY!
AMONG OUR MANY blessings right here in Boonville are our annual crab feeds, which also serve as annual meet and greets for lots of people we don't get to see very often. This very Saturday, the 19th of January, and for the very best of community reasons, the Anderson Valley Senior Center brings us its Crab Feed at the Boonville Fairgrounds. Happy Hour at 5:30 (gigantico margaritas!), mounds of crab at 6:30. A hugely great deal at $40 pre-paid, $45 at the door, especially considering the most scintillating company in all of Mendocino County. Forty dollar tickets available at AV Market, Lemons Market and the Senior Center. Or $45 at the door if you decide at the last minute.
ELEANOR COONEY comments on ‘Does marijuana make you stupid?’
Problem is, pot can be intensely fun. The notion of treating pot smokers the way we do cigarette smokers–making them “objects of pity and derision”–ain’t gonna fly (not to mention just being wrong-headed), for that very reason. Cigarette smoking, once you’re deeply hooked, has just about zero redeeming value, and is a genuinely useless, stupid addiction (and I speak as an ex-smoker) that gives you nothing but yellow teeth, a hacking, phlegmy cough, bad breath, Georgia O’Keefe skin, and if you really hit the jackpot, emphysema and/or lung cancer/heart disease.
Sure, pot has a downside, but its upside is undeniable. Artists and musicians know this. Would we, for instance, have jazz if not for reefer? The mere fact that Jack Webb railed against pot over and over in “Dragnet” tells us all we need to know about how “the man” views pot as a path to “sedition.” Harry Anslinger himself put it succinctly: “Marijuana,” said Anslinger, “leads to pacifism and communist brainwashing.”
If we’re gonna tolerate alcohol (and I think we should), with its massive record of death and destruction, we can certainly tolerate pot. I detect a leftover whiff of “Reefer Madness” hypocrisy. Do we ask if we should treat chronic drunks as “objects of pity and derision” as a way to deter them from drinking? We don’t. First, because we know it won’t work, and second, because alcohol is very much the official sacramental fluid of the “establishment,” whereas pot is the wild, witchy Dionysian element that threatens that order and hierarchy."
WHIMSEY LIVES! Driving up the Ukiah Road early Tuesday morning, as I rounded the corner about three miles up where I was delighted to see a pumpkin perched atop a boulder on the south side of the road, which had required some effort by the jolly someone who placed it there. Maybe it was the same spirited person who painted the boulder gold at the SoCo end of 128 that looks like the world's biggest nugget. And the same person who drapes the baby fir in Christmas ornaments every year, also on the Ukiah Road. Whoever you are, you've got to know that your whimsey has amused thousands of passersby. If there's anything this country needs more than regular laughs it could only be regular cash.
REMEMBERING MARTIN LUTHER KING on his 90th birthday it occurs to me that lots of people, especially the young, don't know much about him beyond his iconic status as a civil rights martyr. Still the best book on King is "Martin Luther King, Jr: A Life" by Marshall Frady available in that nifty Penguin series whose biographies range from Elvis (also recommended) to DaVinci. What has always struck me about MLK is the pure courage of the man knowing, as he said, he was doomed but keeping on nevertheless. His home was firebombed with his wife and children in it, the police withdrew even a pretense of protection, every lowdown cracker in the country was out to kill him… And the arch-weirdo, J. Edgar Hoover, taping MLK's private life. And here we are a little more than 50 years later with armies of "liberals" counting on the suddenly unimpeachable FBI to bring down Trump!
I WAS SURPRISED the other day to hear Larry Bensky on KPFA. Then, a week later I got a note confirming his return, which is a very good thing for that seriously, nearly terminally dumbed down public radio station. It will take a dozen Benskys to obliterate the memory of Dr. Gary Null and the other quacks who bum rushed the Pacifica Network the instant the old rads began to fade. The inevitable "left" hustlers of the most oppressively PC type ran the place for too long, the kind of cranks who, as George Orwell pointed out, come running at the mere mention of socialism. Glad your back, Larry.
When I was stationed in at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi in the early 70s, my primary duty was squadron commander of the 3380th Field Maintenance Squadron. My responsibilities included management of the shop-based maintenance operations and the 400-man (and woman) squadron’s military administration, a catch-all job description that included the occasional retrieval and/or discipline of wayward airmen. At that time, as a passable keyboard musician, I also moonlighted as an organist and pianist at various area restaurants, bars, veteran’s halls, and beer dives. These show biz glories also saw me serving as a bar-soloist and in various musical group combinations, including the area’s only big band.
One of those short-lived musical moonlit gigs was as bar organist and pianist for the Keesler AFB officers club where it soon became known to my boss’s boss’s wife that she might be able to rope me into playing the organ for the annual officers wives club fashion show. Much as I wanted to avoid it, Colonel Taylor’s wife was not a woman to be turned down. She offered to rent me a tuxedo for her gala Friday evening event.
At the same time, I had a standing agreement with the Field Maintenance Squadron’s First Sergeant, Sergeant Johnson, that because of the prevalent racism in southern Mississippi at the time, any time a black airman was arrested in downtown Biloxi we would immediately go down and sign for their bail, unless the arrest was for a felony.
At the time, the Biloxi police department had a well-deserved reputation for arresting black airmen in or out of uniform for the slightest offense, or no offense at all, which would never happen to white airmen much less white civilians. The Squadron Commander (me) or First Sergeant could sign for up to $500 bail, which covered most infractions and misdemeanor arrests.
Toward the end of the officers wives club fashion show, I got an urgent call that a black maintenance Staff Sergeant from the hydraulic systems maintenance shop, who I knew personally and who had an otherwise unblemished record, had been arrested in downtown Biloxi. He was being held in the drunk tank in the Biloxi city jail.
Unfortunately for me, it fell to me to hurry downtown and bail out my Staff Sergeant. I apologized to Mrs. Taylor that I would have to leave. She was understanding despite being married to a stone racist. I drove down to the Biloxi city jail in my tuxedo, introduced myself to the desk sergeant and said I wanted to sign for Sergeant Jones.
The cop wasn't sure who Sergeant Jones was so he walked me down into the main jail’s drunk tank to identify him. I quickly recognized Sergeant Jones and said I wanted to sign his bail. Standing there in my tux, I inspired a chorus of catcalls, wolf whistles and random insults. Sergeant Jones was very appreciative, adding that he had no idea why he’d been arrested, which was par for the Biloxi course. The charge sheet said he had created a disturbance.
In my two years as Squadron Commander at Biloxi, there were probably two or three dozen bogus arrests of black airmen in downtown Biloxi, but as best I recall I only had to sign for three or four. Fortunately, those other visits to the jail were not in a tuxedo.
ON JANUARY 12, 2019, at approximately 10:50 a.m., Officers of the Fort Bragg Police Department were dispatched to the area of E. Laurel Street and N. Main Street for the report of a stolen USPS van being sighted in the area. While responding to the area, Officers saw the stolen van now driving southbound in the 600 Block of S. Main Street. After confirming that the van was stolen, Officers initiated a felony traffic stop on the van in the parking lot of the Chevron Gas Station. The driver of the van, later identified as Aerius Price, immediately exited the van once it stopped and refused to comply with the Officers’ verbal commands despite Officers having him at gunpoint.
After several repeated commands, Price eventually lowered himself to the ground, and he was being held at gunpoint when a Department of Fish and Wildlife Warden arrived at the scene to assist. Officers moved forward and handcuffed Price. During the handcuffing process, Price violently jerked his arm away from an Officer and he had to be forced into handcuffs.
Price was detained at the scene for approximately two hours while Officers waited on a United States Postal Inspector to arrive from Ukiah. Once the Postal Inspector was on scene, both Price and the stolen van were surrendered to their custody. Price was later extradited back to San Francisco to face both Federal and State criminal charges.
2019 AGRICULTURE CLASSES @ MENDOCINO COLLEGE
Agriculture classes that will run this spring at Mendo College in Ukiah starting next week.
CATCH OF THE DAY, January 15, 2019
DEBORAH ANDERSON, Ukiah. Disobeying court order, probation revocation.
JOHN BLAGG, Antelope/Ukiah. DUI, failure to appear, probation revocation.
KENNETH ELLER, Willits. Community supervision violation.
CHRISTOPHER FENK, Calpella. Failure to appear.
JASON MANAS, Newport News, Virginia/Ukiah. Concealed weapon in vehicle, felon/addict with firearm, large capacity magazine.
MIRANDA MULLINS, Laytonville. Under influence, probation revocation.
LAWRENCE ORTIZ, Ukiah. Domestic abuse.
TONY PAUL, Ukiah. Probation revocation.
CRAIG PHIPPS, Willits. Probation revocation.
JOHN REED, Willits. DUI.
NELSON VOSE, Talmage. Failure to appear.
GOVERNOR NEWSOM APPOINTS WADE CROWFOOT NATURAL RESOURCES AGENCY SECRETARY
by Dan Bacher
California Governor Gavin Newsom has appointed Wade Crowfoot, chief executive officer of the Water Foundation from 2016 to 2018, to the position of Natural Resources Agency Secretary.
The 45-year-old Crowfoot, of Oakland, will replace John Laird, who served as Secretary under Governor Jerry Brown since 2011.
Crowfoot was deputy cabinet secretary and senior advisor to Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. from 2013 to 2016, according to a press release from the Governor’s Office. Crowfoot also served as deputy director for Governor Brown’s Office of Planning and Research from 2011 to 2013.
He was West Coast political director at the Environmental Defense Fund from 2009 to 2011 and senior environmental advisor to former San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom from 2004 to 2007.
This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $209,943. Crowfoot is a Democrat.
David Festa, Senior Vice President of Environmental Defense Fund, a large environmental NGO that promotes controversial carbon trading (cap-and-trade) and “catch shares” programs that privatize fisheries, praised Crowfoot’s appointment.
“Wade Crowfoot is a strong leader and problem solver,” said Festa. “His depth of experience working in government and for conservation organizations make him uniquely qualified to take on California’s growing set of natural resource challenges, including catastrophic fires, drought, floods and loss of our natural heritage.”
“As the climate warms and California’s population continues to grow, we will need renewed energy and creativity to steward California’s forests, water resources, state parks, and wildlife. Wade has demonstrated that drive and innovative spirit throughout his career,” said Festa.
“We stand ready to partner with Governor Newsom and Secretary Crowfoot in tackling some of the state’s most consequential challenges,” added Festa.
In a tweet, the Sierra Club California described Crowfoot as an "excellent choice” by Governor Newson.
The State Water Contractors also praised Crowfoot’s appointment in a tweet: “A big SWCongrats to @WadeCrowfoot! Who has just been appointed as the Secretary for the California Natural Resources Agency. Wade is a proven leader in California's water world and we could not be more excited to be working with him. #CAWater.”
As Secretary, Crowfoot will provide administrative oversight to thirty departments, commissions, councils, museum, boards and conservancies – and is a sitting member of sixteen conservancies, councils, boards and commissions within the purview of the Agency. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Department of Water Resources and Fish and Game Commission are among the many departments and commissions Crowfoot will oversee.
Recreational anglers, commercial fishermen, Tribal leaders, conservationists and environmental justice advocates are hoping that Crowfoot and the Newson administration will halt the Brown administration’s worst policies, including the Delta Tunnels project, the expansion of onshore and offshore oil and gas drilling, the state’s Big Oil-written cap-and-trade program, the irrigation of food crops with oil wastewater and the exemption of three major oil Kern County oil fields from the Safe Drinking Water Act.
They also hope that the Newsom administration will reverse some of the controversial water deals that Brown made with the Trump administration, as well as reverse the precipitous decline of Delta smelt, longfin smelt, Sacramento River winter-run and spring-run Chinook salmon and other fish populations that has taken place since 2011
As I receive more information in reaction to this appointment, I will post it here. Below is the press release from the Governor’s Office:
SACRAMENTO — Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the appointment of his California Natural Resources Agency Secretary and California Labor and Workforce Development Agency Secretary, and senior advisors and members of the communications team in the Governor’s Office.
Wade Crowfoot, 45, of Oakland, has been appointed Secretary of the California Natural Resources Agency. Crowfoot was chief executive officer of the Water Foundation from 2016 to 2018. He was deputy cabinet secretary and senior advisor to Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. from 2013 to 2016. Crowfoot also served as deputy director for Governor Brown’s Office of Planning and Research from 2011 to 2013. He was West Coast political director at the Environmental Defense Fund from 2009 to 2011 and senior environmental advisor to former San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom from 2004 to 2007. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $209,943. Crowfoot is a Democrat.
Julie Su, 49, of Los Angeles, has been appointed Secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency. From 2011 to 2018, she served as California’s Labor Commissioner in Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.’s administration. Prior to being appointed Labor Commissioner, she served as the Litigation Director at Advancing Justice LA. She has spent 17 years of her career as a civil rights lawyer with a focus on protecting low-wage workers, and immigrant victims of crime and human trafficking. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $209,943. Su is a Democrat.
Ben Chida, 33, of Oakland, has been appointed Senior Policy Advisor for Cradle to Career in the Office of the Governor. Chida most recently advised non-profit organizations and tech companies on data privacy at an international law firm. Previously, Chida served as Attorney-Advisor in the executive office of Attorney General Kamala D. Harris, leading priorities in education, juvenile justice, foster youth, and children’s data. He also served as a judicial law clerk to federal judges in California and on the D.C. Circuit, and managed the development and launch of the first humanities MOOC on edX. Ben was also a third grade teacher at P.S. 325 in New York City, and worked as a roofer while attending a continuation high school and community college for five years. He attended Orange Coast College and received a B.A. from UC Berkeley, a teaching certificate in childhood education from Pace University, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $165,000. Chida is a Democrat.
Giannina Pérez 47, of Oakland, has been appointed Senior Policy Advisor for Early Childhood in the Office of the Governor. Pérez is an early childhood policy expert and strategist with more than 17 years of experience in state policy, advocacy, and government. Most recently, she worked with Early Edge California to expand professional development opportunities for the early learning workforce and ensure more young children learning English have the supports they need to succeed. For more than a decade, she worked at Children Now, where she led the organization’s work on policies impacting young children (prenatal to age eight) and their families. As Senior Director of Early Childhood Policy, she helped develop a comprehensive platform that included child care, preschool, kindergarten readiness, home visiting, developmental screenings and intervention, family support, child welfare, and overall early childhood systems building. She has also worked in the California Legislature for State Senator Hilda Solis and Assemblymember Cindy Montañez, focusing on women’s and children’s issues including expanding educational opportunities and financial assistance for child care providers, ensuring women receiving public assistance have more opportunities to attend college, and greater protections for survivors of domestic violence. Pérez earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Public Affairs. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $175,008. Pérez is registered without party preference.
Gina Da Silva, 32, of Sacramento, has been appointed Senior Policy Advisor for Immigration in the Office of the Governor. Da Silva has been the Director of Government Affairs at the California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC) since 2017, where she has worked since 2011 in several critical roles, co-leading a budget campaign and administrative advocacy to establish the “One California” Immigration Services Funding as well as subsequent campaigns to increase state funding for access to legal tools that reduce detentions and deportations. She has led legislative efforts to advance state protections for workers against E-Verify, in addition to efforts against mass detentions and deportations through the TRUTH Act and its expansion the CA Values Act. During the past year, Da Silva has driven CIPC’s efforts to address equity and inclusion for immigrants and refugees within workforce development and adult education policies. Da Silva is a California native whose passion for social justice and immigrant rights was shaped by her family’s’ immigrant experience and her lived experience in the United States and abroad. Before coming to CIPC, she spent several years in the Republic of Panama. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $130,008. Da Silva is a Democrat.
Lande Ajose, 52, of Oakland, has been appointed Senior Policy Advisor for Higher Education in the Office of the Governor. Ajose has been executive director of California Competes, which develops and advocates for bold yet pragmatic policies to boost California’s postsecondary degree attainment. Her background in higher education spans college admissions at Vassar College, education and workforce development at the James Irvine Foundation, and research and evaluation at MDRC, where she managed a comprehensive evaluation of the Achieving the Dream initiative. In 2014 and again in 2018, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. appointed her to the California Student Aid Commission, where she currently serves as Chair, and in 2016 Governor Brown appointed her to the Committee on Awards for Innovation in Higher Education. She serves on several boards and commissions, including the WASC Senior College and University Commission, the Institute for Higher Education Policy, and on the advisory committee of the Higher Education Policy Center at the Public Policy Institute of California. She earned a Master of Arts degree in urban planning from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Public Affairs and a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $175,008. Ajose is a Democrat.
Alice Busching Reynolds, 50, of San Francisco, has been appointed Senior Advisor to the Governor for Energy. Reynolds previously served as Senior Advisor for Climate, the Environment and Energy in the Office of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. from 2017 to January 2019. She was the Deputy Secretary for Law Enforcement and Counsel at the California Environmental Protection Agency from 2011 to 2017. Prior to joining CalEPA, she served as a Deputy Attorney General at the California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General from 2002 to 2011 and was an attorney at Sonnenschein Nath and Rosenthal LLP from 1998 to 2001 and at Furth, Fahrner and Mason from 1995 to 1998. She earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Santa Clara University School of Law. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $186,036. Reynolds is a Democrat.
Tracy Arnold, 44, of Sacramento, has been appointed Director of Research in the Office of the Governor. Arnold previously served as the Executive Director of Empower Civic Engagement. Prior to that, she was a partner at Mercury Public Affairs and Director of Jobs and Economic Growth in the Office of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, where she advised on matters related to economic development and international trade. She served as Deputy Executive Director for the California Commission for Jobs and Economic Growth, and Deputy Executive Director at the Washington State China Relations Council. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $145,008. Arnold is registered without party preference.
Jesse Melgar, 31, of Riverside, has been appointed Deputy Director of Media and Public Affairs in the Office of the Governor. Melgar previously served as Deputy Secretary of State and Chief Communications Officer for California Secretary of State Alex Padilla. Prior to that, he was Communications Director for State Senator Ricardo Lara and the California Latino Legislative Caucus. Melgar was formerly Communications Director for Equality California, Account Executive at Cerrell Associates, Inc., and Communications Manager at the Greater Riverside Chambers of Commerce. He earned a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of California, Riverside School of Public Policy. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $120,000. Melgar is a Democrat.
Anastasia R. Carney, 33, of Sacramento, has been appointed Deputy Director of Civic Engagement and Strategic Partnerships in the Office of the Governor. Carney previously served as Marketing and Outreach Director at the California Health Professions Education Foundation in 2018 and as a Program Associate at The California Endowment from 2013 to 2018. She served in several positions in the Office of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. from 2011 to 2013 and in the Office of First Lady Maria Shriver from 2007 to 2011. She is a member of the American Society for Public Administration and earned a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of San Francisco. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $90,000. Carney is a Democrat.
Janine Shimomura, 28, of Sacramento, has been appointed Assistant Director of Strategy and Communications in the Office of the Governor. Shimomura previously served as special assistant for communications at the California State Transportation Agency from 2016 to 2018. She was vice president of digital at the California Women’s List in 2016 and project director at WomenCount from 2015 to 2016. Shimomura served as a research analyst at the California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General from 2013 to 2015 and was an administrative assistant in the College of Environmental Design Dean’s Office at the University of California, Berkeley from 2011 to 2013. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $65,004. Shimomura is a Democrat.
Lande Watson, 21, of Sacramento, has been appointed Assistant Director of Research in the Office of the Governor. Most recently, she worked for NARAL Pro-Choice California as a Field Organizer. Previously, she worked as a Communications Assistant at the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. She was also a research assistant at the George Washington University School of Media and Public Affairs. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $65,004. Watson is a Democrat.
Birds do it. Fish do it. The random exertions of movement become suddenly a purposeful visual thing. Without a scintilla of collusion, the flock moves and swirls, turns and gyrates as one. Senator Somebody masticates into a mic like he is working his gizzard while a Congresswoman toward the rear is preaching something like anarchy and attracting a few apparently headed off in a new direction.
This seems our national life right now, and there are a million things to merit attention. About nine billion, actually. It all becomes quickly overwhelming, as the birds would be if they suddenly paused their graceful display and landed all around us, but focus and a kind of purpose are primary. Even a chicken soon learns to aim at one bug at a time. Go for two and you will likely starve. Go for the one and you may finally put him in your gizzard. Burp.
1956 CHRYSLER NEW YORKER 4 Door Sedan with HEMI 354 cu/in V8, turning the corner off Haight to Ashbury. Were you there then? Are you there now?
THE BIG SWITCHEROO
"Scientists think the magnetic field's erratic behavior is explained by changes in the flow of iron inside Earth's outer core. But it's also possible Earth's magnetic poles are on the verge of reversing. The planet's magnetic poles flip every 200,000 to 300,000 years, but an attempted flip 40,000 years ago failed. Earth's poles haven't flipped in nearly 800,000 years. In other words, they're due."
REPUBLICAN AND DEMOCRAT are two sides of one ruling elite. In the end they serve their paymasters, the Donor Class, or the Davos people, whatever you want to call them. The political pyrotechnics are meaningless, the transitions between administrations pretty much seamless, the over-riding priority being more money for the oligarchs, less for you and me. Follow the money.
These 2020 hopefuls are courting Wall Street. Don't be fooled by their progressive veneer. Gillibrand and others are behaving perfectly rationally. The last presidential election cost $6.6bn – advertising, staff and conventions are expensive. But even more important than that, they know that while leftwing stances might help win Democratic primaries, the path of least resistance in the general election is capitulation to the big forces of capital that run this country. Those elites might allow some progressive tinkering on the margins, but nothing that challenges the inequities that keep them wealthy and their victims weak.
FREE DULCIMER CONCERT JANUARY 18 AT STANFORD INN TO BENEFIT S.O.S. JANUARY 18 AT STANFORD INN
Brenda Hall will be playing Songs for Shelter on the hammered dulcimer at the Ravens restaurant in the beautiful Stanford Inn by the Sea (44850 Comptche Ukiah Road, Mendocino, CA 95460, 707-937-5615) this Friday, January 18, 2019, from 6:00-8:00 pm. The Ravens restaurant serves wonderful, tasty food in a beautiful setting. Or if you just want to come by for a drink, there is a cozy bar and friendly folks to serve you. An evening of music and great views. There is no charge for the concert, however, Songs for Shelter benefits the non-profit, S.O.S.-Networking for Mendocino Coast Companion Animals. All tip jar donations for the evening go to S.O.S. to help lost and abandoned animals on the coast. So not only will you be serenaded, but you can help coast animals as well. Say hi to Brenda and listen while she fills the room with the melodic tones of the hammered dulcimer. The Ravens at the Stanford Inn is pet friendly.
HOW SWEDES AND NORWEGIANS BROKE THE POWER OF THE ‘1 PERCENT’
"While many of us work to create a better world, it’s worthwhile to consider other countries where masses of people succeeded in nonviolently bringing about a high degree of democracy and economic justice. Sweden and Norway, for example, both experienced a major power shift in the 1930s after prolonged nonviolent struggle. They 'fired' the top 1 percent of people who set the direction for society and created the basis for something different."
JOHN BOLTON is going to spend much of 2019 making the case, both in public and in private, for war with Iran; a war that would make the invasion of Iraq look like a walk in the park. This is what makes him the most dangerous member of this administration, writes Mehdi Hasan.
IT IS WITH HEAVY HEARTS that we are announcing the end of Maximum Rocknroll as a monthly print fanzine. There will be three more issues of the fanzine in its current format; later in 2019 we will begin publishing record reviews online alongside our weekly radio show. Readers can look forward to more online content, updates regarding the archive project initiated in 2016, and other yet-to-be-announced MRR projects, as well as new ways for punks around the world to get involved. We will be having a public meeting at 2:00pm on Sunday, January 20 at the MRR compound to discuss the future — please write firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Maximum Rocknroll began as a radio show in 1977. For the founders of Maximum Rocknroll, the driving impulse behind the radio show was simple: an unabashed, uncompromising love of punk rock. In 1982, buoyed by burgeoning DIY punk and hardcore scenes all over the world, the founders of the show — Tim Yohannan & the gang — launched Maximum Rocknroll as a print fanzine. That first issue drew a line in the sand between the so-called punks who mimicked society’s worst attributes — the “apolitical, anti-historical, and anti-intellectual,” the ignorant, racist, and violent — and MRR’s principled dedication to promoting a true alternative to the doldrums of the mainstream. That dedication included anti-corporate ideals, avowedly leftist politics, and relentless enthusiasm for DIY punk and hardcore bands and scenes from every inhabited continent of the globe. Over the next several decades, what started as a do-it-yourself labor of love among a handful of friends and fellow travelers has extended to include literally thousands of volunteers and hundreds of thousands of readers. Today, forty-two years after that first radio show, there have been well over 1600 episodes of MRR radio and 400 issues of Maximum Rocknroll fanzine — not to mention some show spaces, record stores, and distros started along the way — all capturing the mood and sound of international DIY punk rock: wild, ebullient, irreverent, and oppositional.
Needless to say, the landscape of the punk underground has shifted over the years, as has the world of print media. Many of the names and faces behind Maximum Rocknroll have changed too. Yet with every such shift, MRR has continued to remind readers that punk rock isn’t any one person, one band, or even one fanzine. It is an idea, an ethos, a fuck you to the status quo, a belief that a different kind of world and a different kind of sound is ours for the making.
These changes do not mean that Maximum Rocknroll is coming to an end. We are still the place to turn if you care about Swedish girl bands or Brazilian thrash or Italian anarchist publications or Filipino teenagers making anti-state pogo punk, if you are interested in media made by punks for punks, if you still believe in the power and potential of autonomously produced and underground culture. We certainly still do, and look forward to the surprises, challenges, and joys that this next chapter will bring. Long live Maximum Rocknroll.
IF THEY WERE ANY SIMPLER, I’d be using flash cards.
— Manager Dick Williams, asked whether Seattle Mariner players miss his signs because they’re too complicated.
WHAT DO I KNOW?
by Michael Koepf
I know this: When it comes to Judi Bari and the oft-repeated assertion that Michael Sweeney wrote the Lord’s Avenger Letter, all I can say is this: that accusation is not true.
For years, the editor of this paper and I have gone back and forth on this issue. The editor said Sweeney wrote it. I said Sweeney didn’t. Recently, the editor invited me to write about my defense of Sweeney, a man I do not know. However, without hard evidence what the devil was my proof? Undoubtedly, the Lord’s Avenger Letter is significant in the enduring mystery of Judi Bari and the explosion in her car that occurred twenty-nine years ago. But, I believe Sweeny had a higher probability of writing the Declaration of Independence then he did of writing of the Lord’s Avenger Letter. Fortunately, something new has come to light, something hiding right in front of us for a considerable time indicating he did not.
The Lord’s Avenger Letter was nothing more than an all-to-obvious, cockamamie concoction designed to blame an anti-abortionist, Christian fundamentalist for the bomb in Bari’s car. It was written to lead authorities from the truth. However, all the Lord’s Avenger Letter did was to establish conspiracy since the maligned fundamentalist in question was alibied to the hilt. In the school for amateur conspiracists this would be exhibit A for things one should not do; letters you should not write to blame another for your crimes. The cops are not that dumb!
The editor has long maintained that Michael Sweeny was the author of the Lord’s Avenger Letter. Like others, in this decades long pursuit that has sucked so many into the vortex of Judi Bari’s often contradicting politics and statements, opinion appears to be core of proof. Why not? In the editor's case, he’s an editor. Opinions are his coffee and cake in a bizarre, mismanaged county that sorely needs harsh and humorous opinions to benefit the rest of us.
When it comes to Michael Sweeney some of our editor’s judgments are serious; some are meant to entertain. But, they all boil down to this: the husband did it. The husband’s always the suspect when it comes to harming a wife, even though Michael Sweeney was an ex-husband in this case. To the credit of our crusading editor, he has confessed to obsessing on Sweeney. He recently wrote about a worried family member that cautioned him: “You know, Pops, you’re getting to be like one of those conspiracy crackpots who walks around with his whole beef stuffed into a cardboard box just waiting to pounce on the polite and unsuspecting.” The anxious relative is correct. It’s time to give Sweeny a rest; time to put the lid on the Sweeney box and place it on a dusty shelf. Mr. Editor, perhaps I can help you out. I’ve stumbled on a tiny grain of truth entwined in strands of DNA.
Last year, Paul Holmes, a cold case investigator with the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office, was instrumental in identifying distant relatives of Golden State murder suspect, Joseph DeAngelo. Holmes used online DNA databases, notably GEDmatch and Parabon Nanaolabs. Holmes and other detectives spent months utilizing traditional police methods and genealogy consultants to build out 25 family trees going back as far as three generations of Joseph DeAngelo’s antecedents that lived on the east coast in the 1800s. Scouring hundreds of names and genetic profiles, investigators narrowed in on one man living in a quiet suburb of Sacramento. The Golden State murderer was caught, and a ground breaking methodology for criminologists was established: population affiliation, the use of DNA to examine ancestral family trees that may lead to criminals either specifically or by physical or ethnic associations.
Since the May 24th 1990 bomb went off in Judi Bari’s car in which Darryl Cherney was a fellow passenger, the Judi Bari bombing case has taken as many turns as a package licorice twists. All of them are not sweet. One twist was Darryl Cherney litigating against the FBI to obtain DNA from the envelope in which the Lord’s Avenger Letter was mailed. Cherney has long charged that the FBI blew him up. He’s produced a film that adheres to the theory that the chief law enforcement agency of the United States of America was deeply concerned about two environmental hippies playing cacophonous music on a fiddle and a guitar. They were as worrisome as Saddam Hussein. According to Cherney, the FBI were so concerned that they had to take the two hapless troubadours out. It’s as grandiose as it’s absurd.
It’s always been my thought, that at the time of Bari car explosion, Judi and Darryl were former lovers grown apart. They often appeared together to advance whatever cause was currently in their heads. But, as individuals they were operating separate agendas not necessarily known to one another. Be that as it may, Cherney was successful in obtaining DNA from the envelope flap of the Lord’s Avenger letter. Two types of DNA were found. The major and dominant source was that of a female! This put the Lord’s Avenger Letter at odds with its intent, which proposed to depict a lone wolf, anti-abortion, Christian fundamentalist man.
Again, attention amateur conspirators—if you attempt to write in the voice of a male, don’t let your girlfriend lick the envelope flap. There was a minor source of male DNA on the envelope (which further reinforces conspiracy) but a lady wielded the dominant tongue of DNA.
Which brings us back to detective Holmes and tracing DNA via an Internet site. Gumshoe that I’m not, nevertheless, I thought I’d give it a try using the female DNA traced to the letter flap. I discovered PopAffiliator 2. It’s a site created by the US National Library of Medicine and National Institute of Health that uses STRs (short tandem repeats) to calculate the assignment of an individual to a major population group. Essential to the theory of Sweeney authoring the Lord’s Avenger Letter is that he wrote it, but a woman associated with him licked the letter flap. Current, gender reassignment caprice aside, we’re born either XX or XY. Two sexes were involved in the Lord’s Avenger Letter. This had to be explained to maintain Sweeney as the culprit. Our dauntless editor took the lead, naming various women associated with Sweeney over the years. One opinion was extreme. Was our assiduous editor writing into darkness to chase the darkness from this place? Was the elixir of his ancestors involved to ease the pain of truth away?
This particular theory opined that a woman associated with Michael Sweeny, who worked for the Press Democrat, snuck into the PD archives and stole the Lord’s Avenger Letter after the FBI had returned it to the Press Democrat. The letter may be missing, but what would be the point of the theft? Why would Sweeny want to dispose of it? The DNA results already existed as obtained by Cherney through a reputable lab.
Here’s the essential thing: according to everything that’s been written about Sweeny in the pages of this paper, the ladies associated with him have been of European descent—Caucasian ladies if you will. When I inputted the major source of female DNA from the flap of the Lord’s Avenger Letter into PopAffiliator 2 the results surprisingly came back as follows: the female is question whose tongue caressed the letter flap had a 64.6 percent of probability of being Asian, or a 55.7 percent possibility of being from the Middle East! Perhaps close enough in percentage points to be easily either one, but the DNA on the letter flap was a not that of a Caucasian gal! According to the National Library of Medicine National Institute of health, PopAffiliator 2 is 86 percent accurate. To date, there are no known females of these ethnicities associated with Michael Sweeney. This leads to the obvious conclusion that he was not the originator of the Lord’s Avenger Letter. Unless he had a secret female friend from the Middle East or China, the man is wrongly accused.
This is the only fact I have, but here’s an added opinion. I knew Judi Bari, and I knew her at a time when she and Michael Sweeney had separated and were divorcing. Annamarie Stenberg was Judi’s best friend. One long ago afternoon, as Judi and I exited Annamarie’s house in Fort Bragg I asked Judi about her divorce. Was everything all right, meaning where there any problems at hand? Judi’s answer was no. She said their divorce was “amicable.” She said that he—Michael Sweeney—“is a wonderful father to our girls.” Judi said it quickly with sincerity. As time went by and the events of those years overwhelmed all, Judi often rode a seesaw in her playground of personal truth. Fact and fiction went up and down, but what she said then about Sweeney, I believe was true. It was heartfelt. Michael Sweeney bore no dangerous animosity to the mother of “our girls.”
What now? What do I know? The Lord’s Avenger Letter reeks of conspiracy like rotten, moldy cheese. Since the letter appeared in 1990 in Mendocino County, forensic DNA has advanced at lightning speed. DNA forensics can now inform ethnicity, but this is only the start. As we learned in the case of Golden State Killer, DNA through GEDmatch and Parabon Nanolabs led to generational family ties that tracked back to a murder’s hands. In the case of Parabon Nanolabs—accessible only to law enforcement for about seven thousand bucks—even partial DNA may lead to a descriptive profile, or even outright identification derived through relatives of the woman in question that licked the flap.
I don’t fault the editor, who went off track with Sweeney. He was only trying to do what law enforcement should have done. What will happen now? What do I know? I live in Mendocino. All kinds of terrible things get swept beneath the rug. Who wrote the Lord’s Avenger Letter? Maybe Judi knows. There’s no answer at this date, but the DNA may tell us more.
Very interesting, Mike, and if the FBI weren't preoccupied trying to link Trump with the Russians they might even deign to re-open the case which, as I'm sure you will recall, they declared closed because "Nobody will talk to us." Which wasn't true in 1990, and also a hell of an implausible thing for a police agency to say. But then the FBI, historically considered, has hardly been synonymous with truth or the search for it. I'd thought I'd made it clear that the disappearance of the Lord's Avenger Letter from the Press Democrat as the work of Sweeney's love interest and reporter for the paper, Glenda Anderson, was far fetched, going on to wonder how a newspaper with a full-time librarian could "lose" such a significant document as the LA Letter. However amicable Bari might have said her divorce from Sweeney was, she told me and many others that she was afraid of him, that he'd beaten and raped her, a statement I found unlikely having known her. She told Steve Talbot of PBS and other illustrious journalo-venues that she was certain Sweeney had bombed her. Of course as we both know she said lots of things to lots of people entirely depending on who she was talking to. Boiled down, the only "mystery" of who bombed Judi Bari was the mystery of why law enforcement at all levels, all the way to the feds, not to mention Bari herself, scrupulously steered attention away from her ex-husband. The FBI knows who did it. Why they felt they couldn't drag it all into court is the true mystery here. My opinion? Sweeney had them by the nuts. A guy around bombs and left nut groups all the way back to the fire bombing of the Bank of America at Isla Vista, is excluded from the numero uno position in the suspect pool? I think the feds were running one of their 60's-style listening posts out of the Mendocino Environment Center opposite the County Courthouse in Ukiah. I think Sweeney was a snitch for them all the way back to his Maoist days at Stanford. The FBI was in Mendo during Redwood Summer because some of the EF! types were engaged in industrial sabotage, a federal crime. I think Sweeney was the fed's guy in Mendo from his and Judi's convenient perches at the MEC, and present-day Mendo supervisor John McCowen, owner of the building housing that inert and wholly self-alleged "activist" center, is probably still drawing a handsome rent for use of his ramshackle premises. I think rather than reveal what they were up to in Mendo circa 1990, Sweeney got a free pass to murder his ex-wife, whether or not intentionally. Interesting piece though, Mike, and I agree with you about Mendo being a place where bad things happen, but name a place in our imploding country where bad things don't happen these fraught days? PS. We've linked Joe Pfaff's and Don Foster's analyses of Sweeney Prose. PPS. And Sweeney threatened to sue everyone from the LA Times to KQED for linking him to the bombing. Never sued anybody, least of all me. He says I don't have any money, as if his honor, or what's left of it is of purely monetary value. The last time he made excuses for not suing me he said my nephew would pay my legal bills! Maybe he didn't write the Avenger letter, maybe he out-sourced the job to an international envelope- sealing company of Chinese and Arabs. Like you, I wish we had the original. Contemporary DNA analysis would reveal the whole scam, front to back. PPPS. Interested persons, including the FBI, are invited to the AVA's website where every document we can find related to the case, including this one, can be found.
HOW THE LORD'S AVENGER READ HIS BIBLE
by Joe Paff, AVA Scriptural Correspondent
At the Bari-Bombing meeting in Garberville Bruce Anderson mentioned a conversation with an FBI agent concerning the Lord’s Avenger letter in which the editor asked him if he’d checked the Bible quotes in a Concordance?
The FBI agent asked “What’s a Concordance?” and our editor could only exclaim over the agent’s ignorance. I noticed some in the audience wondering — “What is a Concordance?” A Concordance is a vast and elaborate index of the Bible with lists of references each with an eight word or so headline.
If a person is not familiar with the Bible from the inside, he can take his topic — say, mercy — and look it up and receive a nice list of one-liners, and if he has a Bible at hand can look up his favorites to expand the quotes.
To remind our readers, the Lord’s Avenger letter was written five days after Bari’s bombing and contained specific information about the bomb’s construction. This credibility was used to try to convincing the police that the bomber was a born again Christian and anti-abortion activist. In the letter there are eight quotations from the Bible. I spent an afternoon with my Bible and Concordance looking at these eight quotes and here are my results. Obviously the Lord’s Avenger didn’t look up mercy. To see if this was the right track I went right to the word Vengeance and immediately found three of the quotes. In fact, two of them were the first two offered. But let’s go through the quotes in sequence.
The first quote: “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection, But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. — Timothy 2: 11,” is used by the Avenger to condemn Judi Bari’s blasphemous behavior at the Baby-Killing Clinic (Planned Parenthood). We find this quote readily in the Concordance under woman/wife: the correct citation is 1 Timothy 2:11 and 2:12. When we read Timothy we find that the issue here is the wayward wife. It is usurpation of the man as head of the house that is condemned here. It was Eve being beguiled — “hath fallen” — transgression and nothing can save her but childbearing and fidelity. Adam should be “One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity.”
The second quote: “And God said, let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens, and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. — Genesis 1:26.” This is the only quote readily found without a Concordance since it occurs on the first pages of Genesis and is the signature quote of all rapers of the planet, much used by Wise Use and other critics of Earth First!
The third quote: “The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked. — Psalms 58:10” This chilling quote is in the Concordance as the second entry under Vengeance; the end of the line is also quoted under wicked. Remember — this quote is chosen right in the middle of technical details of bomb making and with full knowledge that Judi Bari was in the hospital suffering the bloody results. The Wicked to be punished are those who go astray as soon as they are born, speaking lies. “Their poison is like the poison of a serpent: they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear.” The Avenger says that “something that festered before my Eyes stirred him to strike down this demon.”
The fourth quote: “Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. — Ephesians 5:17” The Avenger uses this quote to describe the time of waiting when the bomb should have already exploded and then the wonder of God who held the timer up until The Demon was joined in her car by the VERY SAME man who had helped her “Mock and Insult the Faithful.” How was this quote found in the Concordance? When we look under wife we are directed to Ephesians 5:22 “Wives, be in subjection unto your own husbands.” What is the will of the Lord here? The quote occurs in the middle of a chapter condemning fornication, uncleanness, and things which are done in secret: “it is a shame even to speak of” (Ephesians 5:12) and is immediately followed by the “Wives be in subjection unto your own husbands.” The will of the Lord is clearly directed to the straying wife (and how convenient that she was with the VERY SAME man).
The fifth quote: “suffering the vengeance of eternal fire — Jude 7” is used by the Avenger to justify the pain and suffering of Judi Bari. This quote is found verbatim in the Concordance under Vengeance with one small omission. The entry in the Concordance reads “Sodom — suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.” The crime being punished here is not pagan tree worship but rather fornication and going after strange flesh (i.e., homosexuality). We go directly from eternal fire to these words: “Yet in like manner these also in their dreamings defile the flesh, and set at nought dominion, and rail at dignities. But Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing judgment, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.” Even when arguing with the devil to save Moses you won’t hear any railing out of Michael, who defers to the authority of the supreme Father; yet here we have a pair of fornicators who rail at worthy things and, presumptively, defy the paterfamilias.
The sixth quote: “To me belongeth vengeance, and recompense, their foot shall slide in due time for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste. — Deuteronomy 32:35.” This quote is the first entry in the Concordance under Vengeance. The Avenger says this quote is meant as a warning to the followers of Judi who are worshipping trees. What does the Bible refer to here? What kind of foot-sliding is going on? For what is vengeance coming in haste? Here is the full quote: “For their vine is the vine of Sodom, and of the fields of Gomorrah: Their grapes are grapes of gall, Their clusters are bitter: Their wine is the poison of serpents, and the cruel venom of asps. Is not this laid up in store with me, sealed up among my treasures? Vengeance is mine, and recompense, At the time when their foot shall slide: For the day of their calamity is at hand, And the things that are to come upon them shall make haste.” Once again, the crimes are crimes of sex and the Avenger has long been storing up the poisons of snakes and betrayers.
The seventh quote: “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. — James 4:7” is meant by the Avenger to evoke the demon’s pagan faith. The quote is found directly in the Concordance under devil. But the devil referred to in James is not the pagan demon but the Freudian devil that lives in our loins — the pleasures that war in your members — too much lust, too much pleasure and laughter — “Ye adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God?”
The last quote: “I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the Lord. — Psalms 101:8” This quote is found in the Concordance under Wicked. It is the Psalm of the Upright man: “I will walk within my house with a perfect heart because a perverse heart shall depart from me; the slanderer will be destroyed; the person with the high look and proud heart” will be gone; and “he that works deceit shall not dwell within my house.” Concluding with the “I will early destroy,” etc.
A few conclusions. The quotes were readily found under a small handful of words in the Concordance: woman/wife, vengeance, wife, vengeance, devil, and wicked. Five of the quotes explicitly refer to the wayward or straying wife, adultery, fornication, and lusting after strange flesh and unnatural sexual practices. The opening and concluding quotes evoke the upright man who would rule his own house which is forever in danger of destruction from the lying and deceiving woman.