Friends Don’t Let Friends Vote for Idiots

The only thing  more amusing than a blowhard laid low is a blowhard making a fool of himself in public.  We’ve had a lot of such amusement lately.  It’s getting tiresome.

Personally, I’m so sick of Donald Trump’s screeching that I turn off the sound when I see his face on TV.  I haven’t missed anything significant. The tide has turned for “Chicken Don”.  For the first ten months or so of his campaign, he could spew out any kind of garbage and no one challenged him. That’s changed. Both CNN and MSNBC, among others, are directly fact-checking him now and pointing out his lies as soon as he utters them.  That’s a good start, for the candidate who has been found to have spoken truthfully only 13% of the time.

His response to the Orlando shooting was particularly disgusting.    His tweeted reaction was to gloat over his supposedly having predicted- what? More terrorist attacks?  My dog could predict that!  To Trump, it’s all about him. One pundit described him as “isolated and unhinged”. That’s a good start.  He doesn’t even know what he doesn’t know! Surrounded by paid help and sycophants,  he blunders onward like an out-of-control tank, spreading lies and hatred. This combination of arrogance and ignorance isn’t fooling anyone except, well, the fools. 

Do YOU know anyone personally who is planning to vote for Trump?  Do them a favor and talk them out of it. They’ll be ashamed to tell their kids that they voted for this idiot. And no, don’t roll out the old “Hilary is just as bad” line.  When it comes to dealing with ISIS or Putin, who do you want; the former Secretary of State or the guy who says the Orlando shooter is from “Afghan”?  Yes, watch the tape.  This guy couldn’t find Afghanistan on a globe and he wants to be President?

Ain’t gonna happen. No thanks to the lazy and foolish Republican party that lay down in surrender to this screeching ignoramus. Hope that doesn’t include you.


How I Voted


I love early voting. Here’s what I did.  Since I already got rid of my ballot, I may have left something/one off.

Senate:  Kamala Harris  A no-brainer.  Good work on homeowners’ issues and mortgage fraud. ,

Congress:  Jared Huffman, another no-brainer.  He has repeatedly demonstrated his interest in the North Coast and if he doesn’t agree with you, he’ll say so. We’re lucky to have him.

District 3 Supervisor: couldn’t vote in this one but donated to Mike Wilson.

District 1 Supervisor:  even though she’s a Democrat on paper, I couldn’t bring myself to vote for Estellle, who has been instrumental in the gutting of the GPU, and the only other candidate, “Bud” Rogers is clearly not ready for primetime so I left it blank.

Assembly:  Jim Wood has been an okay Assemblymember and has taken a leadership role in grappling with the challenges of the new cannabis landscape,  but I was so pissed off when I heard that he had accepted a $1500 round of golf from Silverado,  I left him blank also.  I worked for the State and  if a client brought me a box of cookies I had to report it, and those reports are on the record for all time.  Jim!  You’re a dentist!   You can afford to pay your own damn greens fees and what you did was DUMB.

Ballot measure:  the goofy measure that apparently affect only folks who have been turned out of office but haven’t had their salaries stopped yet  is worthy of approval even though it will only affect maybe  one person a year.  Housekeeping measure.

And I got my Bernie sticker.  I’ll be happy to vote for HRC in the general but I want Sanders to win the California primary.  Let’s see how it goes.

Just remember to VOTE if you haven’t.


Me and the Caucus

During the years I lived in Hawaii (1982-1993) I had to adapt to the fact that Hawaii does not hold primary elections- instead, they have caucuses.  One year- I think it was 1988- I decided to attend a caucus in support of Jesse Jackson and the Rainbow Coalition.

Like most things in Hawaii,  the caucus was extremely laid back. We met in a classroom at Hali’ewa Elementary School.  My fellow Caucusoids were thirteen very nice, very elderly gentlemen,  primarily of Japanese background. The youngest one was seventy. We got to know each other, talked story for awhile, then filled out ballots. The count came in with no surprises: thirteen ballots for Sen. Dan Inouye, one for Jesse Jackson.  We did some paperwork,  then the conversation turned to the fact that they normally had someone from that precinct, or whatever it was called, attend the State convention in Maui, and they had no one lined up to go.

They were all looking at me hopefully.  One of them- he must have been in his nineties- told me about the good time I’d have.  You might think it would be easy to talk someone into a weekend on Maui but believe me, when you’re already on Oahu, it’s no big deal. I asked the nonagenarian what type of folks I would be meeting with on Maui.  “Oh, just like us”, he assured me. I decided to pass.

I may have missed out on a fascinating experience by not attending but I’m pretty blasé about political conventions,  having had a good seat at the 1964 Goldwater convention at the Cow Palace. But that’s another story for another time.


“Pore Jeb Is Dead. Pore Jeb Bush Is Dead”

Did the Republican debate Tuesday night leave you humming tunes from “Oklahoma!” ? The next-to-last scene, the mock funeral of the villain Judd Fry, played in the movie by a babyfaced Rod Steiger, is buried without much sorrow to a dirge proclaiming “Pore Judd Is Dead”.  When someone finally decides to put the Jeb Bush campaign out of its misery, they could definitely use the same music.  My apologies to Rogers and Hammerstein.

Is it an amazing coincidence that Oklahoma!, which was famous for using an exclamation point in its title, should provide the exit music for the faltering JEB! campaign?  Go listen to the soundtrack. It fits. 

What we saw on Tuesday night was, first of all,  too many people on stage.  The buffoons, Trump and Carson, should not have been there but will be around for awhile.  Chris Christie, who should have been there, was relegated to the kid’s table.  The man who is the greatest threat to the Democrats, Marco Rubio, had a great night and managed to duck having to articulate an immigration policy.  It was the best Republican debate so far, and kudos to the Fox Business Channel which was responsible. 

What went wrong with the Jeb! campaign? He’s articulate, experienced and bilingual. He should have led a march by Hispanics to the Republican tent. But it’s not going to happen. And I can’t help but feel  bad for him because he seems like a decent person.

 Oh well. 


Fun in the Sun

As the cold November winds prepare to blast us into winter, wouldn’t you like to fly away to a land of perpetual sunshine? Someplace like Maui?

Well,  two dozen California legislators have packed their swim trunks and sunscreen and have flown to Maui.  These lucky folks are being treated to a five-day conference at the Fairmont Kea Lani Hotel in Wailea,  where the rooms cost $350 per night. But they won’t see a bill. Their expenses ($2500 per lawmaker) are being paid by  a non-profit called the Independent Voter Project.  Who are they? They include:

Occidental Petroleum and the Western States Petroleum Association

Eli Lilly

the Altria tobacco firm

the California Cable and Telecommunications Association

the State prison guards union 

the California Distributors’ Association tobacco and other products).

Just to make sure our legislators get enough rest, a mini-conference from Nov 19-23 will be held just down the road at the Grand Wailea. The sponsor is the Pacific Policy Research Foundation whose supports include Eli Lilly (again), PG&E, and Amgen.

Who attends these gatherings? That’s a semi-secret but legislators from both parties routinely show up as well as power brokers like former assembly speaker John Perez. The only people who don’t get a seat are you and me. Patrick McGreevy lays it out in the LA Times.  

Every year they have these elitist parties with the public left out and every year people bitch about it, but here we are again. And Jerry Brown,  who doesn’t make many mistakes, vetoed a bill  that would have required nonprofits that pay for legislators’ travel to meetings like this, to disclose their donors.

But what good does disclosure do? These people have no shame.  Next year they’ll do it again. Even with a series of recent scandals, they’ll do it again unless someone stops them. Write to Mike McGuire, write to Jim Wood, join California Common Cause.

Maybe next year we should crash the party? Or at least get them to hold it in-state?  Box lunches at the Wharfinger should be good enough for those who are really doing the people’s business. 





Election Notes October 2014

I don’t profess to be a “Famous Humboldt blogger” like our friend  Fred.  (Fred has a good sense of humor.) And I have to confess that I haven’t been as involved in politics as I normally am, due to family and health issues, but elections are important and I’ll put my two cents in. I think most of you know that I’m a nonvoting member of the HCDCC, and a lifelong Democrat.  

Eureka City Council- this is the easiest call. Natalie Arroyo and Kim Bergel are like a breath of fresh air compared to their undistinguished opponents, about whom the less said the better.  Give these two women a shot. You won’t regret it.

Fair Wage (Prop R)- I just accosted John Forrest, the owner of Hole-in-the -Wall, down at the store. I had not visited my favorite sandwich place in some weeks because I was so irritated at his apparent callousness in remarks reported by the Times-Standard. Then on Saturday, while I was struggling with my groceries in the Winco parking lot and the rain was starting to fall,  one of the HITW employees saw me and helped me.  Now I’m a regular again because of his STAFF. Mr Forrest is a genial guy but no one patronizes HITW because of him, it’s because of the STAFF. I hope the Fair Wage initiative passes. Yes, I know prices will rise. As an old lady on a fixed income, I’ll manage and so will others. There has been more ugliness and hypocrisy around this issue than any I can remember and it has been dismaying to behold.

No GMOs (Prop P)- If the family farmers who bring us the Farmers’ Markets and enhance our quality of life so much are for it, then I’m for it. ‘Nuff said.

FInally, the public safety measures, County Measure Z and Eureka Measure Q, are certainly worthy of your support.  Thanks to ALL the candidates and campaign workers for giving your time.  

Separation Anxiety- California and Scotland?

A Silicon Valley one-percenter is proposing to split the state six ways. Guess which part will end up with all the money?  It ain’t us.

Meanwhile, on September 18th, a referendum in Scotland will determine whether Scotland remains part of the United Kingdom or goes independent. The similarities between the Scottish situation and the putative State of Jefferson are interesting to compare.

MONEY: Scotland is a rich country due to the North Sea oil reserves. They can leave the Brits  behind and still survive economically.  (Scotland can already afford to educate its university students for FREE.) A State of Jefferson on the other hand will end up as the Appalachia of the  West. Other than tourism and weed, which will be selling for pennies after legalization, what do we have? Oysters. Good oysters, but still…Every candidate for office in Humboldt County in the last twenty years has run on a platform of bringing jobs to the county. Where are those jobs? I must have missed something.

HISTORY: The Scots were an independent people until 300 years ago with their own culture and language. ( To this day the average American has about as much chance of understanding a Scot speaking what is now is considered the Scottish dialect as he would have understanding someone from Newfoundland.) 300 years ago there were no “white” people in “Jefferson”. The State of Jefferson would have the highest proportion of Native Americans of any area in the State. Separating from California would not enhance their economic situation one bit. If it would, tell me how.  Yes, they would carry more clout locally because everyone else will be broker. But will their situation really improve? Will anyones? 

POLITICS: The Scots have long been more “socialist” than the rest of the UK. Within recent memory they were still sending a Communist or two to Parliament every year, usually from Glasgow. The factories and tenements of Glasgow were the inspirations for Karl Marx’s Capital. Glasgow is the only place where I ever had a cabbie return a tip because good Marxists don’t believe in tipping. The Scot’s desire to be free of “imperialist state” of the UK has deep roots and may well carry the day. Politics in “Jefferson” is more chaotic. With a 20% participation in the recent elections, it seems clear that most Jeffersonians (is that what they call themselves?) are not participating in politics because they’re  hopeless or too stoned. This paves the way for the Tea Party or other fringe groups to fill the vacuum. Not a pretty sight.  

Anyway, September 18th should be interesting. If the Scots opt for independence will they be part of NATO?  Will they adopt the Euro? What will happen to the North Sea oil, in which the Norwegians also have an interest? It’s been a long time since our states changed boundaries. In November, will the divide-and conquer strategy of the SV plutocrats win out over the welfare of the rest of us? Stay tuned.  And for God’s sake register to vote. 

Mothers’ Day Doesn’t Mean Much If You’re Homeless

I don’t celebrate Mother’s Day. I’m not a mom , I lost my own mother at a young age and in January I lost my wonderful stepmother. So it’s basically a holiday for other folks and it must have been an act of fate that a couple of days ago I ran across the first copy I had seen of The Humboldt Edge. It’s a paper published by the homeless community with the support of the Ink People and you should pick up a copy (they’re available at Old Town Coffee)  or check them out online.   It’s humbling. 

Way back in December 2007 the Times-Standard reported that there were about 2000 homeless in Humboldt County OF WHICH 40% (or 800) ARE CHILDREN. I was shocked by this and further shocked that no one else seemed to be outraged. This figure has apparently not changed in the last seven years since the newest Edge states there are around 700 of these kids. If anyone has updated figures, bring them forth.  A teacher was quoted in the Times the other day as saying that a huge number of his students were living in cars. 

Now I don’t mean to bring you down on a day when everyone YOU know is busy fixing big meals to celebrate Mom.  She deserves it but I will ask you to take a moment sometime in the next week to do something for these kids who don’t get holiday meals or a roof over their heads. Can you imagine how a mother feels who cannot provide shelter to her children?. However much Rob Arkley and his ilk rail about the so-called “invasion” by the homeless (most of whom were born right here) surely this cannot be blamed on the kids. Drop a check to Betty Chinn or just GO to your nearest elementary school and give them some bucks; they know what their students’ needs are. Just do it in honor of mom.

And have a happy Mother’s Day. Really.  


Jerry’s on Top; Padilla coming to town.

Jerry Brown’s job approval rating has climbed to a new high for his third term in the Governor’s office. (Some of you may not have been born yet during his first two terms.) The Field Poll dated April 9 shows 59 % of registered voters approve of his job perfomance. Of likely voters, Field showed 57% planning to vote for Brown, 17% for Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, 3% for Laguna Hills Mayor Andrew Blount, and 2% for businessman Neil Kashkari. Looks like Jerry’s got a lock.

If anybody can be said to have benefitted from the disgraceful antics of about-to-be-ex-Sen. Leland Yee, it would be his competition for the Secretary of State position (Leland was planning to run). Sen. Alex Padilla is currently the front-runner.The Field poll has a good analysis of that race here. And if you want to meet the Sen. Padilla up close and personal, the Humboldt Democrats are holding a meet ‘n’ greet with refreshments (RESERVATIONS REQUIRED) on Wednesday, April 16 at noon at the Labor Temple, 840 E Street, Eureka. Make your reservations at the HCDCC website by clicking on the “Meet N’ Greet” poster.  This may well fill up, so don’t delay. Maybe some of Alex’ good luck will rub off on you.

Have a great weekend!