Liberal Humboldt, CA

Now with FOUR readers!


Civility: (n) /səˈvilətē/

-  formal politeness and courtesy in behavior or speech.
- The Google.

John, you wrote…

Thanks to Jon and HCDCC members but Linda Atkins needs to learn basic civility

John, Linda needs no such lesson.  Linda was exercising her right and her duty as an elected member of the HCDCC to do what she felt had to be done.  I failed you John as a host as I didn’t do my homework.  Again, for the second time in 2014 – mea culpa.

That said, I think civility is a great subject.  It’s one of the foundations of my blogging/activism and I think it’s foundational to a vibrant properly adversarial political system.

Serendipitously, after reading your screed* John, I searched The Google for “civility”.  Before I could complete the search The Google suggested civil politics which directed me to

The awesome video below was the result.  It includes both Jonathan Haidt AND that inequality graph which the four kind folks who have read a type-word or two of mine might recognize.  I think this video is a great place to start when speaking about civility in politics.  It’s important because it addresses both the “asteroids” or huge common problems we face as a globe and society and it addresses our current hyper-partisanship which simple civility MIGHT help overcome.

So on this most politically divisive of days on our calendar hopefully this video will help point a way forward.  A direction that begins, but importantly, does decidedly not end,  with civility.

Kids – stay in school, stay off drugs, AND DO YOUR HOMEWORK.  I didn’t and I failed first John Chiv and with John’s chosen response, Linda Atkins.   My apologies to both for not doing my homework and avoiding some unpleasantness that didn’t need to happen.

Having said that John, my apology to you ends at, again, your chosen and decidedly uncivil and self-serving response.

*   ie “pitched a fit”, “her beef”, “screeched”, “petty drama queen”, “bully” etc.

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The Thin Green Line Between our Rivers and Our Unincorporated County Areas Lives to See Another Day

The Thin Green Line’s scientific name is the riparian zone.  It’s definition was solidified in the GPU with measurements for set backs taken from the “top of bank” – an improvement over the previous language that the Department of Fish and Wildlife representative seemed to be OK with even with the lessening of the set back to 150ft and defining a protection limit of 200 ft.  According to the DF&W employee in attendance, the latter is relatively rare and the top of bank is such an improvement that BR-S5 comes out of this process in decent shape.

Over my head, but what Supervisor said helped sell him on this was that the ministerial process that is part of this language is much less ownerous on property owners than the other process that would entail getting CEQA permits and would start at about $6,000 simply to get the permit process started.

Supervisors Ryan and Virginia joined Supervisors Lovelace and Fennell from two weeks ago in accepting staff’s recommendation on the language of BR-S5.  The compromise came with a maximum setback of 200 ft which probably allayed much of the legitimate fears of the property rights advocates.

On the other hand, the takings rhetoric was shown to be so much falderal as a line could be acceptable to all, property rights advocates simply wanted that line to be as close to the middle of the river as possible without losing the next election.

Here is a link to the Times-Standard article.  Thanks to our local paper for allotting the staff time to be there for the entire proceedings yesterday and to reporter Will Houston for being there.

To see how far we’ve come on this from the dark days of the Planning Commission’s attempt at BR-S5  here is a My Word from local biologist Ross Taylor.

If the set-backs were the one success story – all the rest remains the same.  This Board’s job is to take the previous GPU and insert some common sense language based solely on the input of the largest stakeholders in this process.

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TODAY: Candidate Kashkari and the California Republican Ticket in Arcata

And Will Focus on the Middle Class  from The Baywood Golf and Country Club

I wish I could go today.  I highly recommend going to anyone interested in politics – and not to be disruptive or rude, but to really speak and interact with living, breathing Republicans.

CA gubernatorial candidate Kashkari said “middle class” 8 times by my count during the debate Thursday night, no doubt a campaign managers feeble attempt to address his roots in Wall Street.

If you do go, see if anyone is interested in reclaiming the Party of Lincoln.  Republicans do not necessarily have to, nor have they always been the party of Rob Arkley (and his ilk).  They were once and can be again about the middle class – in deeds – not just words.  They have to somehow reclaim their proud heritage and let go of their obsessively tight grip on their idealized image of Reagan (Which, btw, has become a right-wing fantasy of the actual Reagan).

Sid, Uri, Richard, Matthew, Virginia, Rose, Chet, Mike, Frank, Marian, Rex, Ryan, and all other local conservatives interested in politics and government- take back your party and use it to fight for the middle class.  Take it back from the Chamber of Commerce, Rob Arkley, Rob McBeth, Fred Sunquist and other local job creators who have this attitude you can find in the TS today.

“Another thing is, are you talking about minimum wage employees who get tips or minimum wage employees at places like grocery stores who don’t get tips? I’m not going to let an employee make $13 an hour and then get another $4 a hour in tips tax-free”

John Forrest – Eureka’s Hole in the Wall owner.  Which, btw, makes an awesome sandwich and has a wonderful staff – AND a dyed-in-the-wool Republican owner.

Not only should we “let” our employees make $17 an hour, we should be encouraging our workers to make real … living ….      …..      wages.  Conservatives and Republicans, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE read this editorial (second link to same article) and ponder on it.  There is a way forward which would be much more trying and might not result in immediate wins, but it would be worth it.

worth it for yourselves, as you could become a leaders instead of  followers of Rush Limbaugh, Grover Norquist, et. al.,

worth it for the county, as it would help to clean up local politics, and…

worth it for the country, as grassroots in politics is a real and powerful phenomena and if this takes off here, the model could be followed elsewhere.


Think. Speak. Act.



Humboldt Activist

Bill Holmes passed away this weekend.  Most of you probably knew of Bill’s work even if you didn’t know the man.  Bill would have been that bearded man belting out tunes with his guitar and amps at all Measure R/Eureka Fair Wage Initiative events and booths before July 4th.  Bill’s digital identities included highboldtage and the Humboldt Activist.

Bill was one of the handful of people that is Eureka’s Fair Wage Folks.  This group which seemed to form out of momentum from Occupy has created a movement which has done the unthinkable – it has united Humboldt’s progressives, HCDCC Democrats and unions behind our City’s fair wage measure.

Think.  Speak.  Act. in Bill’s memory today.  If you need some direction that Bill might have appreciated, visit and give what you can in time/energy or funds.  They/we are going to have to make up for the void Bill’s passing has left around the Fair Wage meeting table not to mention the hearts of those that knew him.

There will be something of an impromptu and unadvertised musical gathering in Bill’s honor today around St. Vincent Depaul near the back of the Mercer Fraser garage at 35 West 3rd in Eureka between 11 (0r 12) and 3.  Please stop by and groove if you can.

Have a peaceful day Bill.  We miss you.


Will California Bloggers Kill the First Amendment?

John Chiv has linked to his second FOX News post in a month and I think there needs to be a conversation.

Of course the best place for this conversation to take place would be John’s blog, but many of you might have had the same problem I recently had – comments not getting published.

Now, shout out to Richard Marks and Rose Welsh for they have posted every comment I’ve made – even when I disagree with them.  This is sadly not true for John who has not published my last two comments.

So for those of you who are similarly flustered and don’t have the $400 (DireWolf’s comment) it takes to start a blog of your own, please consider this thread for any disagreements you might have with a post of John’s.  We’ll see how this works, maybe I can restart/refresh this thread each month as needed.

Here btw, is the ridiculous spin on a FOX News story for those of you unfamiliar with our local political/crime reporter.

“Will California environmentalists kill the bid for these living wage jobs?”

And John, the offer still stands – any time you are interested in going to an HCDCC meeting I would be honored to have you as a guest.

(For the record, this is not really a 1st Amendment issue.  John has every right to post only the comments of his choosing.)

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Natalie Arroyo’s Campaign Kick-off Today

Natalie Arroyo for Eureka City Council

It’s exciting to have a young civically minded person taking the challenge of running for a position she knows may involve some unfair cost to her private life and after a grueling contest the reward will be untold responsibilities, a meager salary and countless hours of work.

But she did throw her hat in the ring and will make it official and public today at noon in front of Eureka City Hall at 6th and K.

Thank you Natalie for your belief in civics and knowing that one person can make a difference.  It’s something I hope you can spread to more people of all ages.  It’s desperately needed, especially up here in the North Coast.

In other related news … only three days left for someone, anyone (who lives in the 1st Ward) , to challenge Marian Brady.


Linda’s Back! Eureka Progressive Democrat Meeting This Thurs.

And with her the Eureka Progressive Democrats Club.  Come one, come all.  Thursday at 7:00 HCDCC hq at 129 5th St.  Here is an email from Linda . . .

“A reminder to let you know that the Club will be meeting this coming Thursday July 24th at 7pm in order to plan what we’d like to do for this Fall’s Eureka City Council Elections. Please come and get involved (and bring a friend!).”

Do you like your Democrat with a little less added Republican?   This is a great place to start.  June was a valiant but ultimately unsuccessful attempt to extract money’s grip from the people’s chairs behind the dais – at least at the County level.  It’s time to pull up our collective boot straps and get back to work to try to return at least the City’s seats to their rightful owners – the people.

And for those that remember 1992 as the Year of the Woman, it looks like November could be our HumCo equivalent.

And … In order to not appear unfair, I do want to stand up for men.  I think someone needs to think about running against Marian Brady in Eureka’s First Ward.  If, for no other reason to insure some semblance of gender equality on the Eureka City on November 4th.  Actually, now that I think, about it another woman candidate running against Council Member Brady would be just fine with me too.

So, plenty to do progressives, get out there and shake some hands.  All three candidates above will be looking for volunteers (and probably money too).  Also, don’t forget about the Fair Wage Folks.  Regular meetings are Tuesdays at 6:15 PM.  See you all out there.

Adding a widget – last day for someone to stand up against Marian Brady in Eureka’s 1st Ward- August 8th.  Are you interested?  Please call the City Clerk’s Office at (707) 441-4175.



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Google Can’t Find Humboldt County Elections Right Now

Couldn’t find Humboldt County Elections with the Google this a.m.  So as a public service, here is a link to their new and aesthetically much improved site.

From there you can probably access much of the rest of the County web site you might be interested in.

This will be resolved naturally shortly as the traffic to the new site grows, but in the mean time…


It’s Official…Congratulations Supervisor Bass.

It’s that Democracy again, laying down what’s what.

Newly re-elected Supervisor Bass…Still wondering what steps are we taking at our local level to fight climate change?  Will they be enough?  Will future Supervisors be called on to do more, or should we depend on State and Federal state governments to address this?

Nah…Enjoy your day, congratulations and we can work on those questions tomorrow.

Also, to Chris, Mitra, Adele, and all the other volunteers – you all were great and did great.  It was really a pleasure to have worked those consistently beautiful Spring 2014 Saturday and Sunday canvassing shifts you all set up.  You have bright futures and should be proud of what you accomplished.

You took on a well liked incumbent and came really close – and you did it with class, and positive energy.  Thanks for caring enough about your community to make the efforts you did.

Also, special heart-felt thank you to friend, family and puppies too for putting up with my time away and focus on the campaign.



Hooray for Natalie Arroyo! (and some notes about who she is running against)

Natalie I’m sure I will be voting FOR you in November for my (unconstitutional) vote for Eureka’s 5th Ward Council person, not AGAINST your opponent.

Having said that Councilmember Albin represents the pinnacle of a strategy that has worked for many years in Eureka and Humboldt, and I’m hoping this era of political deception is coming to an end.

Councilmember Albin registered as a Democrat last I checked at the Elections office back in 2013.   If I’m not mistaken, he registered as a Democrat in 2012.  The reason is simple.  People know that the “D” means 5 to 15 points next to your name on election day.  Can anyone name an elected official in Humboldt County who is a registered Republican?  Frank Jager?  Mike Newman?  Rex Bohn isn’t, nor are any of his Supervisorial colleagues.

But aren’t conservative and Republican values very, very, well represented in this County?  How is this possible?  By the strategy that Chet is using so transparently, that Chet has become a caricature.

So Natalie, good luck to you.  I look forward to learning more about you and what principles and ideas you will bring to our City’s Council of 5.  From your Lost Coast Outpost comments I’m pretty optimistic about you and your chances.

But, for old times sake, below is a screen grab of Chet’s Facebook page I made the minute I heard about it from Joel Mielke on a LoCO comment.  Not sure why Chet took it down.

Mr. Albin – if you still believe in  advocating “drug testing all Welfare recipients, abolishing the separation of church and state, closing the borders and speaking English ONLY!”.  As you shared from realtor and friend Larry O. Doss.  You should be proud enough to say so in public.  (and by the way you will not find support for those in the Democratic Party post 1965 in case you are confused)  Many of your supporters will, you should be able to too.  The fact that you quite obviously hold these values, but don’t choose to share them publicly is exactly what I’m struggling against in HumCo.

To many, these are righteous and proper conservative principles and values.  Rush Limbaugh and hundreds of others speak about them every day.  Run on them.  Be who you are.  Don’t poison our civics by being deceptive.  It may help your chances and the principles you believe in by giving you a slight electoral advantage in what is clearly a blue county and city.    The problem is it’s corrosive to our politics and in the end leads directly to backroom deals and corruption.  This is what happens under one party rule when there isn’t an open and honest (ish) public discussion of ideas and principles in a way that allows the public to see and understand what is being decided.

i.e. civics.

Chet Albin's Facebook page before he took it down

Chet Albin’s Facebook page before he took it down


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