- SNWMF Cancelled
- Suspect Apprehended
- Variety Show
- Cox Reading
- Local Notes
- 101 Slipout
- MCDH Board
- Tolerance Problem
- Rebuilding Fees
- Marijuana Meetings
- Chinese Massage
- Yesterday's Catch
- Unnatural Megalopolis
- Rue Morgue
- South Africa
- Good Hard
- Library Closed
- Dance Fundraiser
- Claude Monet
- Immunized Lindenberger
- Public Imagination
- Nature's Dream
- No Collusion
- Scout Cookies
- I'm Offended
- Dark State
RAIN AND A FEW THUNDERSTORMS will occur over portions of northwest California today, followed by cooler showery weather Thursday and Friday. Saturday another system is possible before dry weather on Sunday. Additional unsettled weather expected early next week. (National Weather Service)
SIERRA NEVADA FESTIVAL BOWS OUT
We write this with a heavy heart. For some months we've struggled to do the essential work of creating what we always hope is the best reggae and world music gathering of these times. Our founder, Warren Smith’s health challenges since last June’s 25th annual festival have made this much more difficult than ever before. Warren suffered a setback in his recovery which resulted in us reevaluating the “runnins” to ensure everything goes smoothly. But as times flies by we find it is undeniably looking to not be possible this year, and therefore we must reluctantly and regretfully take a year off.
Rest assured that nobody wishes SNWMF to continue more than we do, as it has been an exhausting but rewarding joy to present it all every June. But we cannot in good conscience present an inferior version, while risking the health of our fearless leader. We hope and trust that you will all understand this difficult decision - and that you will rejoin us again in 2020 when we fully expect to return.
You have all been a pleasure to work with, and we have always felt that you have made SNWMF one of your priorities. Thank you for all of your support, and we look forward to working with you again in 2020. Thank you all.
Sherrie Letcher and the SNWMF Team
Coordinator, SNWMF, Epiphany Artists
ARMED ROBBERY SUSPECT APPREHENDED
VARIETY SHOW THIS WEEKEND
Get ready, 'cause it's almost time for the 28th annual Anderson Valley Variety Show at the Philo Solar Grange! As always, we've got two unique nights of super, special, silly, stupendous acts to share with you. Each night is different, so you'll want to be sure to attend both Friday and Saturday, March 8th and 9th, so you can see them all!
We have a great plan for getting tickets to you so that you can be sure to get in! The tickets will be available now at Lemon's Philo Market, and the Anderson Valley Market in Boonville. It will be $5 for kids under 12 and seniors over 65, and $10 for adults between the ages of 13 and 64. These pre-sale tickets often sell out by Friday. Tickets will also be available to buy at the door, but not many, so get your tickets early! There are different tickets for each night, and only a specific number sold, so if you have a ticket, you are guaranteed entrance!
The doors to the Grange will open at 6:30, a half hour before the show, which starts at 7:00. You'll want to get there early, though, because as always, there will be a long line and a fun party in the parking lot beforehand. Dinner will be available both nights, Friday, the Teen Center will be selling pozole, and Saturday Jay will be selling his famous rib dinners.
The senior bus will be picking people up at the senior center in Boonville and at the post office in Philo. Any seniors riding the bus will be admitted early so that they can be sure to get seats. We no longer save the front row for seniors, as this is not the best place for the hard of hearing; that is actually rows 3, 4, or 5.
The show is a wonderful expression of this place and who we are. So come be a part of the community and the fun! See you at the show!
SHAMROCKS & SALSA
Mark your calendars for St. Patrick’s Day, Sunday, March 17 at 3:00 at Lauren’s if you want to join a celebration of the publication of Jerry Cox’s book “Shamrocks and Salsa.”
There will be brief readings from the book by Jerry’s family and time to share stories about Jerry. Light refreshments will be served and the bar will be open. The book will be available for purchase for $16. If you are celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in a different way and can’t come to Lauren’s, you can order the book at Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble online, the Apple Store or Xulonpress.com The e-version is $9 and the paperback is $21 if you order it on line. We hope to see many of you there.
UPDATE on Saturday's multi-agency raid in downtown Boonville next door, as it happens, to the Anderson Valley Advertiser. Some 15 vehicles disgorged at least that many agents led by Fish and Wildlife, a state entity that never, in our tiresome experience with them, answers their phone or deigns to reply to media requests for information. They were accompanied by sheriff's deputies and, it seems, people from County Planning and Building. A number of fighting roosters were confiscated and the property owner was cited for presiding over an unpermitted subdivision housing some 23 persons, including children. As neighbors, to us the unpermitted subdivision amounts to a little Mexican village. The only complaint I have is the occasional burst of unreasonably loud music which, in its way, is rather charming so long as its autentico Mexican ballads and not the depraved din young Americans seem to prefer these days. I would hope some kind of temporary stay on evictions can be worked out because there are a number of young children next door whose parents are unlikely to find shelter any other place in Air B and Bee’d Anderson Valley which, without Mexicans, would come to a screeching economic halt.
WHO SAYS the County can't move fast? Why, right here in central Boonville a large County road crew is installing a Bailey Bridge over presently impassable Lambert Lane made impassable by the rampaging Robinson Creek during last week's big rains. Supervisor Ted Williams explains further: … "MCDoT is deploying our Bailey Bridge to reopen Lambert Lane, as soon as we can, but we expect no later than the first week of April… five weeks. The Fairgrounds access will allow limited access until we install our temporary bridge."
THE BAILEY BRIDGE was installed on Orr Springs Road in last year’s rain-caused washout there.
THE BAILEY BRIDGE was developed during World War Two to make it possible to get hurry up military forces and equipment across rivers whose permanent bridges had been destroyed.
THE LEGGETT SLIP-OUT
US 101 slip out near Leggett update: One-way controlled traffic remains in effect.
A $5 million emergency contract was authorized and awarded to a contractor late Friday afternoon.
Work has already started to repair the road. Onsite monitors and 24-hour flaggers are keeping an eye out for any new movement at the site around-the-clock.
Engineering geologists, construction engineers, the contractor, and other Caltrans staff met over the weekend to make plans and get work started. Stabilization efforts could start in the next two days as soon as a specialized equipment can be brought in. Please slow down and watch for crews working, expect delays of 15-20 minutes.
MENDOCINO TV FAULTS NEW COAST HOSPITAL BOARD for not living up to campaign promises and acting like the old much-criticized board — “Grasping for a lifesaver before finding out why the boat is sinking.”: “…it appears major decisions are happening behind closed sessions, with minimal reporting out, ignoring transparency and community input…”
THE DEEPER PROBLEM
To the Editor:
At the beginning of this year, Jim Shields reminded all readers that 1016 new laws were coming into effect in California for 2019. By my estimate, this makes about new 3,500 laws our state government has put in place over the last four years. Why do we need so many laws? We have laws against stealing, yet two West Side homes were recently burglarized. We have laws against gun use, yet in the past month we have had three armed robberies. We have laws against littering, yet it took a group of civic minded citizens a day to clear out 5,000 pounds of accumulated trash just south of town. We have laws against driving under the influence, yet every week we see a dozen or so arrested. We have laws against possession and use of illegal drugs, yet meth, cocaine, and herione seem to readily available for those who want at affordable prices. Our city council passed a shopping cart ordinance, yet carts are scattered around town as if no law were in place. Contrary to popular belief, laws do not put an end to undesirable behaviors!
The incidents I’ve cited are really just symptoms of a far deeper problem. That problem has its roots in ‘tolerance’ and what constitutes ‘moral’ behavior. A funny thing has happened in our society over the last generation, we are intolerant of things we should tolerate and tolerate behaviors that we shouldn’t. Instead of thousands of new laws, why don’t can’t society go back to basics, like ‘The Golden Rule’, which itself is a summary of the Fourth through the Tenth Commandments? Although portions of some of these are codified in law, a number are actively opposed by prominent politicians and influential public opinion shapers! Even secular interpretations of the first three commandments can guide us not to follow the false gods of substance (ab)use, power, and wealth or the use of strong language which offends and divides and leads to other uncivil behaviors. The utopia certain leaders want to lead us to through the coercive power of government is really the utopia we left behind a generation or two ago when society really had a moral compass of self-control and directly helping our neighbor.
SUPES REFUSE TO HELP
The Board of Supervisor’s received a petition requesting the waiving of the building permit fees with over 500 signatures, yet they have done nothing.
The Board of Supervisors, although repeatedly asked, have failed to waive or substantially reduce the cost of the building permits. Supervisor Carrie Brown has attempted to blame various codes, rules, etc. on why they are unable to do this. The fact of the matter is none of this is true. There are no laws, codes or any other statutes which would prevent the Board of Supervisors from waiving or substantially reducing the costs.
Ever since the fire of Oct. 8 and 9, 2017, the fire survivors who decided to stay and rebuild have been gouged with cost after cost.
Other counties, Napa for one, have either greatly reduced or waived the building permit fees for the victims of the fires who were under insured or are finding the rebuilding costs more than they can afford. $6,000 for a building permit is criminal especially when this is not a first time build. These fees were paid originally when the house was originally built. We are not building because we want to. We are building because a fire burned down over 300 homes and killed 10 people. Most, if not all of us, had no warning and lost everything. My family left with only the clothes on our back and our pets. Some other people were not as fortunate as us and were not able to rescue their pets and lost them, as well.
Supervisors don’t you think we have been through enough? If anything, we should only be charged a remodel fee. Many of the fire victims are going to lose their FEMA trailers soon and with all the upgrade fees and building permit fees, they are not going to be able to stay and rebuild. You know what that means? No taxes for your raises.
This fire has been a cash cow for this county. We not only have to pay outrageous fees to the county, but we are paying sales taxes for refrigerators, furniture, appliances and lumbar. Not to mention the work we are giving to the contractors (who by the way have upped their fees), electricians, plumbers, etc. Then of course we have to pay for this ridiculous state law for the sprinkler system. That’s another almost $10,000. A sprinkler system that will up everyone’s insurance rate because any little jolt will set it off, flooding the room. Just what we need. We can go from fire damage to flood damage.
It should also be noted that instead of reducing the fees to help the victims, the Board of Supervisors had no problem giving themselves a 40 percent raise. Nothing like taking care of themselves. Hopefully every citizen of Mendocino County will remember this the next time we have an election.
If the fire victims did not stay and rebuild the counties tax base would plummet and then where would the Supervisors get the money for their raises? Maybe they could donate some of that money to the fees for the building permits? The amount we are paying in taxes for the items needed to rebuild should more than cover any monies not collected for the building permits.
I hope every fire victim will start showing up at the Board of Supervisor’s meetings at 9 a.m. on Tuesdays and speak at the public forum. We should not stay silent and let them get away with this despicable behavior. Let’s stand up for what is right.
COUNTY CANNABIS COMMITTEE CONVENINGS
The Board of Supervisors Cannabis Ad Hoc Committee will hold community meetings at the following locations, dates, and times. Please join in to have your voice heard regarding potential revisions of the County's Cannabis Cultivation Ordinance!
Willits Community Meeting
DATE: Wednesday, March 6, 2019
TIME: 5pm - 6:30pm
WHERE: Willits Community Center, 111 E. Commercial St., Willits, CA 95490
Fort Bragg Community Meeting
DATE: Thursday, March 7, 2019
TIME: 5pm - 6:30pm
WHERE: Fort Bragg Veterans Hall, 360 N. Harrison St., Fort Bragg, CA 95437
Covelo Community Meeting
DATE: Friday, March 8, 2019
TIME: 2pm - 3:30pm
WHERE: Covelo Community Center, 23925 Howard St., Covelo, CA 95428
Dear Community Members,
Please see the attached Agenda for the cannabis cultivation ordinance ad hoc community meetings. Please note that the intended focus of these meetings are potential changes to the cannabis cultivation ordinance. There will be other opportunities to address the Board on issues related to fees, taxes, Genetically Modified Organisms, hemp, and other business types.
The ad hoc committee is in agreement that "transferability" ought to be allowed and therefore recommends that on or after January 1, 2020, new owners or new partners in existing cultivation sites in Rangeland, Forest Land and Timber Production Zones ought to be able to apply for cultivation permits. The process by which this would occur is open for discussion. Some options would require an Administrative Permit or a Use Permit.
The ad hoc committee has included the remaining major discussion items on today's agenda just as they were originally presented to the Board. They are presented for discussion and without recommendation.
The Board invites additional comment from the public on potential amendments to the cannabis cultivation ordinance.
Supervisor John Haschak and Supervisor John McCowen
Cannabis Cultivation Ad Hoc Committee
Status update on items previously approved by the Board
Several amendments previously directed by the Board require Planning Commission approval. These include tiered nursery permits; generators; visibility from a public right of way; and Industrial zoning code changes. Cannabis fee related items will be part of the County’s fee hearing process in April or May.
Major Discussion Points for Reconsideration
10A.17.080 (A)–Should Use Permits, which require site-specific environmental review, be required for all Phase Three (1/1/2020) permit applications?
10A.17.080 (A)–Should new permit applications be allowed in RL (Rangeland) subject to a Use Permit?
10A.17.060 Permit Types – Should permit size be increased to one acre for conforming parcels in RL, AG (Agriculture) and UR (Upland Residential) but only for Outdoor Cultivation to limit the proliferation of hoop houses and greenhouses? Should this require a Use Permit?
10A.17.070 (D) - Subject to a Major Use Permit should more than two permits per parcel be allowed? Should the total square footage be allowed to exceed an acre, perhaps up to four acres, provided no single permit exceeds an acre? Should this be limited to specific zones or geographical areas?
10A.17.070 (K) Non-Transferability of Permits – Should existing cultivators (Phase One) have the option to apply for a Use Permit to allow for Transferability of their Agricultural Permit? A Use Permit, if granted, would entitle a new owner to continue cultivation provided they comply with all terms of the Use Permit and apply for, obtain and comply with all conditions of a cultivation permit.
Other items from the public
AN ON-LINE RESPONSE: Remember that group that toured the county supposedly “taking input from members of the growing community”? Just before this fake “legalization,” this scam lobbying group courted supervisors and made press releases about how it was all going to be wonderful, etc etc. When the dust settled most of us finally realized the group was spearheaded by mega-growers (Emerald Scamily out front) and they worked private deals with supervisors and planning department for huge grows. The supervisors broke some other side agreements that may have helped smaller scenes. The state proposition passed, the advertised canopy restrictions (five year transition period) for mega-mega-farms were repealed by the state committee behind closed doors and etc etc etc. That horse is way out of the barn and here we are… Shitshow Royale where the biggest get bigger and everybody else can pretend it’s awesome unicorn marshmallow skies. If there are still people wanting to sign up for fees and taxes and massive over-regulation in Mendocino then I don’t think they have been following the situation very closely!
BROOK GAMBLE COMMENTS: The local Chinese foot/body massage business Foot Logic is my go-to for back pain management (two Ukiah locations: School Street and Orchard Avenue, also a location in Healdsburg & Napa). I was skeptical at first, but went out of necessity because I haven’t found anyone else locally that can fit me in same-day, which is helpful when experiencing pain. The therapists are excellent - I’ve only witnessed professional behavior and effective techniques, however it is a strong massage - not everyone prefers it. Their prices are very reasonable for body work. The School Street location gets busy - you often need a reservation for peak evening/weekend hours. I can’t speak to the other four businesses mentioned, but certainly hope I’m not contributing to trafficking and prostitution by patronizing what appears to be a legit business. The online comment of the day and a few other things I have read alludes this is a foregone conclusion. Is there a definitive way to know?
CATCH OF THE DAY, March 5, 2019
JOSEPH DALTON SR., Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
RICHARD DYKSTRA, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Failure to appear.
MATTHEW FAUST, Ukiah. Resisting, probation revocation.
MANUEL FREASE, Covelo. Controlled substance, transportation of controlled substance, county parole violation.
MICHAEL GRUNWALD, Ukiah. Aggravated battery: gassing by prisoner, injury or criminal threat to person based on race, religion, color, gender or sexual preference, use of offensive words in a public place which are likely to provoke a violent reaction, offenses while on bail.
JUSTIN HILL, Ukiah. Failure to appear, probation revocation.
ADAM KESTER, Willits. Failure to appear.
BRIAN KLOVSKI, Ukiah. DUI, suspended license.
RUBEN NUNEZ JR., Laytonville. Disobeying court order.
JAIME RODRIGUEZ, DUI, parole violation.
MELINA SALAZAR, Fort Bragg. Vandalism.
KENDRA STEVENSON, Laytonville. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.
JAMES WHEELER, Laytonville. Protective order violation.
THREE DAYS IN LA: TALES OF A RELUCTANT TOURIST
by Jonah Raskin
“Disneyland is presented as imaginary in order to make us believe that the rest is real, when in fact all of Los Angeles and the America surrounding it are no longer real, but of the order of the hyper-real and of simulation. It’s no longer a question of a false representation of reality (ideology), but of concealing the fact that the real is no longer real, and thus of saving the reality principle.”– Jean Baudrillard, Simulation and Simulacra, 1981
You don’t have to be a French philosopher or a French thinker like Jean Baudrillard to see the unreality of LA. Indeed, what once belonged largely to Parisian intellectuals is now commonplace. “I don’t think anything in LA is real or natural,” quipped a young mother with a baby in a baby carriage. She and I were walking around the canals in Venice, a short distance from the Pacific Ocean and I was admiring the arrangement of water and land and houses, too, that must cost a fortune. She’s was a stranger, at least to me, but she looked savvy so I couldn’t help but ask her about the canals of Venice.
To the naked eye, they looked too regular, too predictable and too shapely to be made by nature, but I wasn’t sure. Much the same might be said of LA, itself which strikes me as the capital of the artificial, though Las Vegas, with its neon and glitter and which isn’t far away, offers stiff competition.
Near the end of winter, when the worst of cold weather was behind me, I spent three-days in LA wandering across the urban landscape. Lawns were green and flowers were in bloom, thanks to water pumped and piped from hundreds of miles away. Built on a desert, LA flaunts nature and defies the elements. Four-million people ought not to live here, though they do.
My French friends, Jean-Francois and Virginie, were also in LA, along with their 14-year-old son, Ulysse, who was on his mobile device much of the time, even when I couldn’t get online. For the first day, he didn’t eat, then he ate up a storm: pasta and pizza. His parents had no trouble eating, though they’re also cigarette smokers and tobacco can kill the appetite. Virginie says she’s quitting. Jean-Francois says he won’t.
I have visited my French friends (hereafter known as MFF) in France about half-a-dozen times, and I have rendezvoused with them in Ireland, Spain, San Francisco, New York and Paris, where they both work, though they live in a village called Saint-Sulpice, which boast great bakeries and great butcher shops. Whenever I’m in Saint-Sulpice, I make a beeline for one of the butcher shops and one of the bakeries and stock up on pâtés and baguettes.
MFF are excellent companions of the road, whether by car, train, plane or on foot. They can walk for hours, seemingly without getting tired, while I drag myself behind them. MFF speak English as well as French; we often converse in a mix of those two languages, though my French is way inferior to their English. I try hard; they encourage me to speak French, though they don’t pressure me.
Our time in LA was as much about continuing our friendship and catching up-to-date on news of family and the world, as it was about sightseeing.
MFF and I seem to like the same kinds of food and drink. We share expenses and we both like to go to museums and places of “historical and cultural significance,” as guidebooks often call them. MFF usually travel without them, but they had a guidebook for LA with foldout maps, photos and illustrations. L.A. requires a map in part because it’s so spread out and so multi-faceted. You could get lost much more easily than in Paris, which has arrondisements and the Seine to provide a sense of direction or San Francisco, which is smaller and which has many hills that suggest which way to go.
Jean-Francois is an excellent map-reader with a near infallible sense of direction. He can practically smell North, East, South and West. During our three day sojourn in LA, which began at about 8 a.m. and lasted, at least for me, until about 8 p.m. we only took only one wrong turn, and that was quickly remedied.
We happened to be in LA for the weekend of the Oscars, though we only watched the tail end of the ceremony on TV in their motel room, just long enough to learn that The Green Door won for Best Picture. I had seen it and thought it was okay, though not outstanding.
During the middle of the day, on Sunday, we were caught up in the madness of the Oscars. Streets were blocked, traffic jammed and an array of police officers patrolled the area around the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood where the ceremony took place. We couldn’t get close. No one could, unless they had a ticket to get in and a limo to bring them to the entrance. Chain link fences kept us away.
It seemed to me that a great many Los Angelinos didn’t care about the Oscars. They preferred to be in the streets and in the parks, enjoying the outdoors. That was also MFF and I.
A Lyft driver from India, who offered his financial services, took us from the outskirts of Hollywood to Griffith Park. Once there, we explored the Observatory that boasts a bust of James Dean who died at the age of 24 in 1955, just as the Sixties were busy being born, thanks in part to him and his role in Rebel Without a Cause, which received no Oscars.
Ten of thousands of Los Angelinos had the same idea we had. They thronged the Griffith Observatory—Anglos, Latinos, Asians, couples, families, and perhaps a few solo individuals, though it was difficult to know in that crowd that was remarkably quiet and self-contained, unlike the crowds in French cities where the “Gilets Jaunes” (Yellow Jackets) raged against French President Emmanuel Macron and against Jews and against income inequality, too. MFF gave me the low-down on Les Gilets Jaunes, who sound similar to many of Trump’s supporters: angry, bitter racists who feel alienated.
Los Angeles has to be experienced from ground level and on the street. It has to be lived on sidewalks, down back alleys, across boulevards and along the canals of Venice. LA also has to be experienced from hilltops, rooftops and the top floors of buildings like the art deco Pellissier at the edge of Koreatown that once housed the Wiltern, a grand movie theatre, but that’s now a venue for live music (like Van Morrison), which draws the kinds of crowds who once sat and viewed movies. All the old movie theatres, or at least many of them, are now relics of another age. We saw them and mourned the loss.
“It’s Netflix now,” Jean-Francois said.
At the Griffith Observatory, and from the rooftop of the Pellissier Building, we saw the bigness of LA that sprawls to the Pacific Ocean in the West, and to the San Bernardino Valley to the South. From above it’s clear that there’s little if anything that’s natural about LA. The canals aren’t natural, and the hillsides aren’t natural, either. They’ve been carved out and beaten down by developers and houses and roads. Much of the vegetation seems unnatural, or at least non-native, though the palm trees that dot the landscape look natural enough, though they require huge amounts of water.
LA is a world of seems, a world of appearances and the make believe, though there’s plenty of reality on the 5, the 10, the 60 and the 101, the Freeways that slice through the city, where the car is king and where pedestrians like me and MFF crossed streets at our own peril. We looked both ways and never dashed across a pavement, certainly not Lincoln Boulevard, where we were staying in a motel for about $125 a night, and that might have served as a location for a “B” movie.
Much of LA feels like a movie set. Indeed, the city advertises its links to the movies and to movie history. When you go to the quirky Bradbury Building, which was built in 1893 and that’s on Broadway in downtown LA, you learn that some of the scenes from Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner were filmed there, much as scenes in Rebel Without a Cause were filmed at the Griffith Observatory.
Wandering around LA, I had the feeling, oddly enough, that it’s as a tourist, rather than as a traveler or as a native, that one sees the real LA. A tourist sees the real LA more readily than the resident of LA, who has often lost the ability to go beyond the familiar and the habitual. A tourist hunts for places off the beaten track. A local follows the same old paths.
In the 1980s, I spent a lot of time in LA with two movie producers, Bert Schneider (Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces) and Mark Rosenberg (Bright Lights, Big City, The Fabulous Baker Boys). Rosenberg, who was an SDS member, died at age 44 in 1992 of heart failure on a movie set in Stanton, Texas, during the filming of Flesh and Bone. Mark lived and died for the movies. Bert grew up in the movie industry, made money fast, supported the Yippies and the Black Panthers, and escaped the wrath of the # Me Two Movement. He died in 2011 at the age of 78.
In the 1980s, I would also occasionally visit the screenwriter, Naomi Foner (Running on Empty) and her then husband Stephen Gyllenhaal, a producer and director, and their son and daughter, Jake and Maggie. When Jake was 14, I offered to be his agent. “I already have one,” he said. “But thanks anyway.”
I fell for Bert’s LA and Mark’s LA: sexy LA, wealthy LA, glamorous LA, but now I like grubby LA, the city of old men and old women who live in the old downtown hotels, which might be used as movie sets but that are too down and dirty. On the way to LAX with MFF—who were off to Tucson to visit their son Désiré, while I was off to Santa Rosa—we listened to Mike, a Lyft driver from a Nebraska farming family as he talked about scenes from Roman Polansky’s Chinatown.
We traded lines from the movie, such as “my sister, my daughter,” and “Forget about it Jake, it’s Chinatown,” which sounds more racist now than it did in 1974 when the film was released.
I’m sad that Bert and Mark are gone. I loved the LA that I knew at their homes: Bert’s in the Hollywood Hills and Mark’s in Pacific Palisades. Yes, there were women in that LA. Bert’s wife, Greta became a monk. Mark’s wife, Paula, is still in the movie biz, but she moved to New York. They were talented and creative, but they were largely faced in the male movie empire. I’m not sorry that the world I experienced with them is now off limits to me. Mark’s house was torn down. Goldie Hawn bought it. She also bought the house next door, tore down both houses and then built a new mansion that straddled both properties.
I don’t know what happened to Bert’s estate in the hills above Hollywood, though I still have Bert’s home phone number — 213.273.3820 — in my old address book to remind me of the unreality of his own life that he produced as lavishly as he produced Five Easy Pieces and Easy Rider and that made him a multimillionaire who gave his money away to Huey and Abbie, and helped keep them out of jail, but couldn’t save them from themselves.
(Jonah Raskin is the author of For The Hell of It: The Life and Times of Abbie Hoffman and American Scream: Allen Ginsberg’s ‘Howl’ and the Making of the Beat Generation.)
BELA LUGOSI AND ARLENE FRANCIS IN THE 1932 PRE-CODE FILM MURDERS IN THE RUE MORGUE
VISIT TO SOUTH AFRICA, 1957
Our next liberty port was Durban, in the province of Natal, South Africa, and our beach time there came with another portent.
The South African police appeared at the pier to enforce a segregated liberty policy. Maybe they didn't behave like storm troopers, but that's how I remember them. I really do remember the humiliation I felt, that many of us felt, at being subjected to inspection by these sneering, sunburned headbreakers. Over the week we spent in Durban we heard continually that the police delighted in enforcing the sexual segregation law, whatever it was called, on foreigners -- that the first offense for a foreigner was four or five decades breaking rocks in the Kalahari. It was a story worked up to terrorize sailors over the years. The authorities seemed obsessed.
In Cape Town the year before, after the last Operation Deep Freeze, Filipinos had counted as "Europeans" and were sent on their way toward the pier exit signs that read "Europeans only." But here in Durban, an English-speaking city, with a British colonial vibe, Filipinos were considered nonwhites. They were consigned to the class of humankind for which the South African police and some people in the U.S. Navy reserved short, spitty, ugly words that come straight from the amydala. White South Africa had about the ugliest and most degrading versions of that wounding utterance: they called a victim of their racism “munt.” Measure the word’s weight and intensity by remembering that a man who calls you a "munt" will kill you.
Memory manipulated can clean up our act and help us feel better about ourselves than we deserve. Though I remember with some pride my outrage at my shipmates, American sailors, being subjected to this insolence, I cannot remember saying or doing anything about it in public. I might not have gone ashore. However, I did. That it never occurred to me to refuse a liberty in the name of decency, to deny myself the chance of seeing South Africa, troubles my recollections, colors everything that I recall about South Africa.
I do remember thinking: how can the American government let this happen? And sure enough, the next day black and Filipino sailors who had not previously experienced one of the Navy's goodwill visits to South Africa returned from the locations to which they had been bused for entertainment variously knifed, shot, and scalded with acid, and to a man, robbed. They spent the rest of our week in port safely aboard. I had the option of staying aboard too, in solidarity. I did not. I saw myself as a sympathetic outsider in the business, a man of progressive instincts ready to observe South African racism with disapproval. The second day of liberty in Durban the American diplomatic community decided to make a policy of entertaining visiting American sailors at their home. So my sympathy, my progressive instincts and readiness to act upon them, proved to be one day behind those of President Eisenhower's State Department.
We had fun, we went ashore. We had long thoughtful conversations with Indian functionaries and servants who made it plain that they expected the present regime to last no more than 20 years. Some of them told us that Indians would no doubt be driven out of the country at the time of African liberation.
We called up the women's dorm at the University of Natal and made a blind date with three young women. Two were South Africans and one was an American from Portuguese East Africa whose father was a nomadic oil executive and who lived a life a little like an army brat’s.
Being in the presence of a great crime always manages to arouse competing moral perspectives from the sentient witnesses. Apartheid made me and my shipmates superior to the Natal College students because they seemed to us to be defending it. Of course they were, summoning as many ironies and contradictions from their experiences as they could in support of the intellectually and morally vacuous apartheid system, citing exceptionalist and anecdotal mitigating circumstances connected with their friends and family. These stories from the cozy, cheery side of apartheid -- which they denied defending -- were of great significance to the young women. White South Africans, addressing the outside world, addressing each other, clung to small contrarian myths that would be swept away by history.
I had a strange feeling in Natal that the English South Africans often assumed they were accepted as opponents of apartheid while everything they said seemed to prove they preferred it to any imaginable alternative. They, and to some extent Indians and Zulus as well, saw their relationship to the system as jerryrigged and temporary.
— Robert Stone, Prime Green: Remembering the Sixties
(Highly recommended reading)
DAVID ROBERTS WRITES: “As I’ve become older there’s something I discovered that I didn’t understand when I was young: Being an asshole is easy. Being cruel, tearing things down, sabotaging things — easy. You don’t need to be smart. But being good? Building things lifting people up? It’s HARD.”
UKIAH LIBRARY CLOSED MARCH 10TH-31ST
The Ukiah Library will be closed for renovations from March 10th through March 31st. We will have an alternate location set up at 280 E. Standley St. with limited services, one block away from the Ukiah Library. We will only be able to accept returns there and you will be able to pick up your requested items as well. Open hours at 280 E. Standley St:
Tues, Weds, Thurs, & Sat: 12-5pm
Browse the Bookmobile shelves: Fridays from 12-3pm
AN EVENING OF DANCE!
Hello, my name is Miranda Stearns. I am a junior at Ukiah High School and a company member at Mendocino Ballet. I am helping head a publicity campaign to spread information about an upcoming dance show to help raise money to send some of our dancers on a cultural exchange in France. It would be greatly appreciated if you could help us spread the word by sending out our PSA. Thank you so much!
— Miranda Stearns
Mendocino Ballet presents An Evening Of Dance (Featuring dancers from Mendocino Ballet Company performing ballet, modern, and contemporary dance).
A fundraiser to raise money for ten dancers that are traveling to France in June/July for a Cultural Exchange with dancers in southern France.
Saturday March 23rd, 2019 from 7-8:30 pm
At Mendocino Ballet
205 South State Street, Ukiah
Admission by donation. Suggested donation $15.
Information: Call Mendocino Ballet at (707)463-2290
"CLAUDE MONET" in his garden at Giverny, Summer, 1905
ATTENTION MENDO TEENS, UN-VAXXED DIVISION
An Ohio teen defied his mother’s anti-vaccine beliefs and started getting his shots when he turned 18 — and told Congress on Tuesday that it’s crucial to counter fraudulent claims on social media that scare parents.
Ethan Lindenberger of Norwalk, Ohio, said his mother’s “love, affection and care is apparent,” but that she was steeped in online conspiracies that make him and his siblings vulnerable to vaccine-preventable diseases like the ongoing measles outbreaks.
“I grew up under my mother’s beliefs that vaccines are dangerous,” Lindenberger told a Senate health committee. He’d show her scientific studies but said she instead turned to illegitimate sources that “instill fear into the public.”
Last December, despite his mother’s disapproval and realizing that “my school viewed me as a health threat,” Lindenberger began catching up on his missed immunizations. He told lawmakers it’s important “to inform people about how to find good information” and to remind them how dangerous these diseases really are.
This year is shaping up to be a bad one for measles as already, the U.S. has counted more than 200 cases in 11 states — including about 70 in an outbreak in the Pacific Northwest.
Measles is one of the most contagious viruses, able to be spread through coughs and sneezes for four days before someone develops the characteristic rash. It’s dangerous: 1 in 20 patients get pneumonia, and 1 in 1,000 get brain swelling that can lead to seizures, deafness or intellectual disability. While deaths are rare in the U.S., measles killed 110,000 people globally in 2017 — and unvaccinated Americans traveling abroad, or foreign visitors here, can easily bring in the virus.
The vaccine is highly effective and very safe, John Wiesman, Washington state’s health secretary, told the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee.
In fact, a massive 10-year study of more than 650,000 children born in Denmark offered fresh reassurance that there’s no risk of autism from the measles, mumps and rubella, or MMR, vaccine. An autism-vaccine link was long ago exposed as a fraud but still is cited by vaccine opponents. In Annals of Internal Medicine on Tuesday, researchers compared vaccinated and unvaccinated tots and concluded: “Our study does not support that MMR vaccination increases the risk for autism, triggers autism in susceptible children or is associated with clustering of autism cases after vaccination.”
In the U.S., more than 90 percent of the population nationally is properly vaccinated but there are pockets of the country, including in Wiesman’s hard-hit state, where fewer children get immunized on time or at all. They in turn are a hazard to people who can’t get vaccinated — babies who are too young or people with weak immune systems.
Vaccination against a list of diseases is required to attend school, but 17 states, including Ohio, allow some type of non-medical exemption for “personal, moral or other beliefs,” according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
The hearing came a day after the American Academy of Pediatrics urged the CEOs of Facebook, Google and Pinterest to better counter vaccine misinformation spread through their sites.
“We have an opportunity, and in my view, an obligation, to work together to solve this public health crisis,” wrote Dr. Kyle Yasuda, the group’s president.
Lindenberger created national headlines after he posted on Reddit several months ago that, “my parents think vaccines are some kind of government scheme” and “god knows how I’m still alive.” He asked how to go about getting vaccinated on his own.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a how-to-list for youths ages 7 to 18 who’ve missed childhood shots.
Lindenberger’s mother, Jill Wheeler, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that that she was proud of how her son carried himself even though “I didn’t agree with anything he said.” Wheeler said she feared her children having a bad reaction if they were vaccinated, and questioned why a teen was given a national platform to discuss the topic. “They’ve made him the poster child for the pharmaceutical industry,” she said.
Tuesday, the high school senior told the Senate panel that parents aren’t the only ones who need better education. “Most of my friends didn’t even understand they could get vaccinated despite their parents’ wishes,” Lindenberger said.
(Lauran Neergaard, AP)
TICKIN'. TALKIN'. WALKIN'.
As I sit here and listen to the beautiful rolling of nearby church bells four times an hour, I've been watching, studying really, movies and serial media. Among many others since caught in the ubiquitous digital world where the digital version of all there ever is or was lies right there in the palm of your, in my case, wrinkled old hand. I've watched random episodes of Orange [that word again!] Is The New Black, Nurse Jackie, Breaking Bad, and here and there, probably others. I've also been up there with Ishmael looking down there at Ahab, watched, amazed at the stunts, The Blues Brothers, Rainman. Dustin Hoffman and Jack Nicholson have be the greatest American actors, although there are many others, doubtless, in other old minds.The point here is that the expertise evident in all this digital media is astronomically expensive, even if those aren't real people and those are digital creations.
Viewed from this perspective, these things must cost millions, bazillions, gazilions. This is how the rich get richer all the way to the top rungs of fortune where the folks there, like expensively costumed Calvinists, think they deserve it, and then lie about it. Fewer than will fit into a limo have half of the money there is. And through all this, the clockwork has worked on all nearly all of us. Admit it. They've hooked us. Will the emergency nurse score more? And inhale, again. And we watch. Tick. Tock. Tick.
CD RELEASE CONCERT "NATURE'S DREAM", Sunday March 10th, 3 PM, Ukiah UMC, 270 N. Pine.
There is an exciting concert happening this Sunday the 10th at 3 PM! Bill Taylor and Friends will play much of the music from "Nature's Dream" and also some pieces from "Of This Earth". One song on both albums is "Duwamish", which George and Bill recorded on Nature's Dream with just one take. George is that good! When Paul and Bill recorded "Jamaica Plain Bop" back in March, 2011, Bill had trouble choosing between two fantastic solos Paul played. Sometimes one can hear bits of the chosen one on the CD, as the theme music for Jaye's and Bill's edition of KZYX's Farm and Garden Show (usually 3rd Monday at 11 AM). March 10th promises lots of great solo work by both wind players!
The details: "Nature's Dream" CD Release Concert, Ukiah United Methodist Church, 270 N. Pine St., Ukiah, 3 PM. Paul McCandless, George Husaruk, Yanahay Hooper, Jaye Alison Moscariello, Bill Taylor. Most music written by Bill Taylor, one by Paul McCandless and one by Priscilla Rowe (Bill's mom), plus plenty of great improvisation. Healthy yummy refreshments, free admission, both CD's available for purchase and signing (if you already have one or both, the musicians will sign them for you).
Contact: Bill Taylor, firstname.lastname@example.org, 707-272-1688
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
The Scouts are back, selling their cookies in front of the grocers’ front doors. Predictably their parents are right behind them hovering, you know, so they can earn their independence badges. A very fat man walking by said the words I wanted to say, “No thanks, don’t want any of that poison….” 65% of the population is diabetic or pre-diabetic and this is going to continue bending the life expectancy metric downward.
Parents will continue to put their kids out there, to face increasing wrath of the general public who get the wake up call from their doctors: systemic insulin resistance. Everything in the stores is loaded with sugar and we are fatter than ever, only now, that jiggle is getting morbid. Morbid enough for an adult to muster the nerve to tell a child they’re paying poison in public… Which is a good thing. There is a lot children should know about the world their society is indoctrinating them into. But first things first. Let’s shame the parents to their faces about the fucking cookies. Let’s deliver the real merit badges, the “I learned about America’s health crisis (and my role in it)” … To go along with “Neverland Ranch veteran”…
THE LOCAL UNIVERSE was just the beginning of the extraordinary divine plan for us mortals…weak faith or disbelief kept us hidden here. A hypothetical set of other local universes stirred around us, like animals asleep in the winter night. Maybe we were at the center of the set…or maybe we weren't. In any case we found ourselves somewhere in a central universe. And there were lots and lots of them just like there were lots and lots of local universes. And those central universes taken together with their surrounding clusters of local universes made for superuniverses…each in its own supervoid. And there were lots and lots of superuniverses. An infinite fractal. After a while, just thinking about these things seemed like a private religion. It felt like falling forever. — Journal of High Energy Physics
THE DEEP, DARK STATE
The few, the mighty, the Deep State (aka Dark State)…these are people who do not want, seek or tolerate publicity. They do not want the approbation of the many. They need the masses for work and war and other kinds of exploitation (somebody needs to shop at Walmart and dollar stores) but do not identify with them on any level.
As we watch the cartoon of daily life in the Trump era, they tend to business outside the common glare, and tending to business includes stopping any development in our hemisphere that interferes with making money, such as commercial oversight and regulation and introduction of any type of socialism (Social Security, Medicare, public education--popular Deep-State targets for elimination). Today’s target in Latin America is Venezuela, and we (the trump machine) have sent the estimable Elliot Abrams, convicted perjurer and master murderer to scare the living shit out of everybody there and all the freedom-yearning neighbors.
“Deep State” is not an imaginary concept, a boogeyman or fake news, but its usefulness as an expression is limited by the conflicting meanings it has. Trump appropriates the term indiscriminately to label his opposition. (Words like “liberal” and “populist” have been similarly distorted.) The Deep State, when I use the term, is a “community of interest,” bound together only very loosely by position, influence and aim. The first aim is to continue in power, the second to gain more. There’s no blue book of members, no secret handshake.
Yale’s Skull & Bones Society comes close to being pure Deep State. Even better—maybe the best example—is San Francisco’s Bohemian Club, with its summertime festivities at Bohemian Grove, where much-admired people party hearty with the much-despised, “camping out” and comparing notes. Members and guests come from every privileged corner of the world. A proper bomb there would make one hell of a dent in the Deep, Dark State, but the place is protected by local, state, national, federal and foreign cops and security—the latest in security technology. The hyper-dignified can frolic in peace. More than any other gathering I know, Bohemian Grove is an homage to smugness, ruthlessness and elaborate, ritualized denial of all the evil in the world.
There’s no particular human endeavor associated with Deep Statehood. You may be a general, a professor, a CEO, a realtor. You may be a politician or show-biz royalty. What you have in common with your fellow Bohemians is, you have achieved success and recognition and, like other members and guests, you do not choose to pass up this opportunity to mingle with other birds of your feather, whatever your philosophy.
So, there is a deep state (there always is). It has to do with spying and dollars and murder. It does not represent your interests or mine. It is no fiction. It is too shapeless to be dealt with as a single thing. It is very powerful, in a diffused way, and it is dark. Its members rationalize their lives and their predatory actions by saying they are protecting civilization from—what? Barbarians?— which is a claim that is sometimes accidentally true, when the DS’s goals happen to coincide with the public good, but don’t kid yourself that these shadowy rich people give a damn about you. With rare and wonderful exceptions, they do not.