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The President laments that someone can satirize him without retribution.

Honestly, I would never have watched the video but for the headline.

Did the President just advocate the death penalty for drugs?

Tonight on Thursday Night Talk I’ll have what will hopefully be a lively respectful discussion with Bill Bertain and Karen Brooks about the East West Railroad proposal. We will discuss it’s viability as well as its potential function and value to Humboldt County. We will take calls. Tonight at 7:00 p.m.


I’ve been asked in the threads below to comment on the “New Green Deal.”  I was accused of “dodging” because I said I have no opinion as I don’t really know what it is.  So I decided to read up, and I still don’t really know what it is.  When it finally gels into a detailed proposal, I suspect that I will agree with most of it.

My understanding, just from the title, is that it’s going to be modeled after the New Deal which pulled the US out of the Great Depression with stimulus programs focused on rebuilding and converting infrastructure.   I think we’re going to need some kind of comprehensive policy to this effect given the climate crises and other issues of sustainability and environmental degradation.  New technologies have been developing, and probably it’s going to require some national and international effort to reorient the infrastructure for the production and distribution of goods, travel, power, etc.

But I don’t see this as something which can be passed in one law.  We would need hearings with testimony from experts, industry representatives, consumer advocates, environmentalists, labor unions, etc. to identify the problems and propose comprehensive solutions.

So we do need to consider what our biggest impacts are right now, what technology has been developed, what tech is in the works, and whether we need to reorient our concepts of industry, and environmentalism.  For instance, there is a younger generation of environmentalists looking at changes in nuclear power technology (liquid cores which reduce melt-down risks, smaller plants to avoid mega disasters and less dependency on large plants to fuel the grid, etc.).  It means we finally catch up with the rest of the world with regard to public transit and, yes, work towards a national high speed rail system (although I have questions as to whether it would work here on a national scale, but we need to consider everything).

And we need to find ways for people without a college education to be productive and be able to earn a living in a rapidly changing global and national economy.

So yes, I support a “New Green Deal.”  But what that means, and what proposals I’ll support – we’ll see.

Fish farm at the LP site – looks to be an essentially closed system as long as they don’t screw it up.  Something besides weed and timber to do for work.

Any reason to oppose this?

Update:  Tentative approval from Baykeeper.  

I agree with the denial of the permit, but I do fault the County for putting notification to the Tribe so late in the process. At minimum the County should be made to reimburse any fees it was paid.

The applicant should also STFU about the “one true God” and calling the Yurok “pagans.” Doesn’t generate sympathy for his otherwise legit grievance.

LoCo has the story.

Humboldt County may be short on Chinese food and, ironically, fresh seafood, but great breakfast places are in abundance. There are a variety of breakfast experiences from semi-fancy to bohemian. But one of my favorite places to stop in is Chalet House of Omelets at the north end of Eureka. The food is fine and the coffee okay, but mostly I go there because of location, price, speed of service, and the experience. With all the changes to the County, there are few places left with the “old Eureka” feel. The place is almost always packed in the morning, probably because it’s on 101, but it’s also affordable for fixed income people and it doesn’t have what has been referred by some old timers as “the Frisco flavor.” I’ve rarely run into anybody in my social circles. And as often as I’ve been on the other side of political fights with many of these people, I feel like I want to maintain some kind of touch with the old guard. The changes aren’t easy for them, and I don’t want to see the old local cultures disappear. I want to coexist. So sometimes I will take a break from places like Los Bagels or Crosswinds, visit a place like Chalet, and pay attention to the people around me.

On Friday morning I decided to stop in after a very stressful work week and sat down at a two-person table by the window. I ordered, and a few minutes later two older men came at sat down at the table next to me. The tables are pretty cozy in there to fit in as many people as possible in a small space and one of the men joked, “Mind if we join you for breakfast?”

He was wearing a Korean War veteran’s cap. His companion looked a decade or two younger. The latter was quiet for most of the time, but friendly. The Korean veteran ordered oatmeal and proceeded to pull out several small boxes with medication, lay his tablets on the table and took them with what seemed a deliberate order. His companion ordered toast with fruit and sausage – I’m guessing he has an egg allergy.
And then the veteran struck up a conversation. “Do you think we’ll survive this idiot in the White House?”

I said, “I think the system will hold. How much damage he does, who knows?”

He responded, “I hope he just doesn’t get us into another damn war.”

I put my phone down at that point. He really wanted to talk. He said, “I sound kind of liberal don’t I. You would be surprised if you met me when I came to Humboldt County 50 years ago. I was in the CHP and I was a member of the John Birch Society. Do you know what that is?”

We talked about the JBS, and then got back into his life. He used the GI bill to get a degree from HSU where he married a fellow teacher. He taught elementary and middle school in McKinleyville for many years, and then bought a truck and worked as an independent contractor until he was 76. Apparently, that was a while ago.

I then asked him, “What made you turn left in politics?”

He said, “Living in this world and paying attention.”

We talked some more and he said, “I just hope I can see a national universal health care plan before I croak.”

And he explained that no, the ACA doesn’t count. “Maybe it was a move in the right direction but we need private insurance companies out of the picture!”

It was a great conversation. I didn’t want to leave, but I had to get to work. But I never would have guessed the man’s politics by looking at him. I wouldn’t have made assumptions of course. We’ve had some pretty decent election results from a progressive perspective, but they couldn’t have come without people like him.

Before I left I noted that he had started the discussion assuming that I shared most of his politics. I asked him how he knew that. He said, “You have that look.” But he also said, “I do sometimes get into trouble talking too loud here.” The waitress chuckled. I’ve seen him there before and I’m guessing he’s a fixture.

Anyway, so often you’ll hear me say that I’ve met a young person who recharges my hope for the future. Here we have a guy without all that much time left on the planet, and he also gives me hope for the future.

And the French toast is pretty good there.  And they’re one of a few places around which still puts boysenberry syrup on the table.

So what is “that look” I have?



Reenactment of Paul Robeson at HUAC performed by James Earl Jones. The transcript of the hearing is available through the link. The reenactment is an abridged cleaned-up version, but the essential content is the same.  Amazing how Jones sounds so much like Robeson.

Here’s the transcript.

I ran into Matthew at a fundraiser and he told me he had a new post coming out which would be noteworthy on several local issues.  The post is up.

I have a few responses.  First, I don’t think the photograph would have made a difference in the 5th District election.  Ryan Sundberg lost because he had always relied on Native support combined with conservative votes.  But he lost the former because his water protection policies were weak at best, if not bad, and because Madrone has Tribal confidence in his history and abilities regarding the same.  Basically, Sundberg made the mistake of taking the Native vote for granted.

Everybody knows that Madrone is a hippie.  It’s not a headline.  His last name is “Madrone.”  Duh.   It’s not much of a liability anymore, certainly not in the 5th District.

And the DUI thing – Sundberg didn’t want to go there because it would have led to a rehashing of his own DUI and the suppression of it which was successful right up to a day or two before the election when even the North Coast Journal refused to publish about it to avoid being “used” by an operative who had discovered it and sent it to the papers.  It also revealed that for some reason his DUI had never been published along with the other arrests in the Times Standard, which the latter attributed to some sort of computer error.   I think Sundberg clearly didn’t want to go there.


I pretty much stayed out of the McKinleyville statue debate because I was focused on Measure K and Eureka City Council races and because I’m not an Arcata resident.  Matthew wants to litigate it again with comparisons to other Presidents including Lincoln.  But for me the issue wasn’t whether McKinleyville was better or worse than other Presidents.  The issue was whether the statute at the center of town represents Arcata’s values here in the 21st century.  I was actually glad to see it on the ballot so that issue could be determined.  Does the statue represent current Arcata values?  The answer was a resounding “no.”

That other Presidents were worse is beside the point.  McKinley was President at a pivotal point in history – when colonialism was giving way to neo-colonialism and the US was looking to become an empire.  He was ostensibly for a peaceful resolution with Spain which by all accounts was ready to give up Cuba without a fight, as it was more of a liability than an asset given the rebellion.  He probably didn’t want to go to war, but he caved to his VP (Teddy Roosevelt) using the possibly false-flag incident of the sinking of the Maine to justify a war not just over Cuba, but really over the Philippines (initiating a very bloody occupational war there) and other societies which would become “territories” (the then PC word for colony).  His Presidency represents the transition of the US to superpower with the compulsion to involve itself all over the planet to protect its “interests.”

McKinley may not have been gun ho about it, but it happened on his watch.  That is the primary historical significance of his Presidency.  And a statue rarely memorializes a person.  In this case it memorialized a Presidency and a truly horrific moment in history.

Should Andrew Jackson be in a 20 dollar bill?  Probably not.


Correction:  The video he posted on the blog is different from the doxing video he had sent me in an earlier separate email.  This one is just the Fox News interview!  Apologies to Matthew.

Lastly, my biggest hesitation about linking to the post is the video which doxed a local activist by posting paperwork with contact information which led to an epic harassment campaign from right wingers crawling out from under rocks.  The cat is out of the bag, but the individual who generated the video is an asshole and a bully.  I won’t post it here and I will delete it if anyone else does.  It was a scummy thing to do.   Matthew should not maintain the link, but that’s his choice and if the cat was not already out of the bag and wreaking havoc on the activist’s life, I wouldn’t link to his post.



I just turned on the radio at 7:25 and he’s still going!  When did he start?

Update:  Well, he went about a hour and a half.  Most SOTUs are under an hour, but Clinton had one almost as long as Trump’s.  Obama was also long winded.  But I think Trump was going for the record.


February 2019
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