Information Inoculation: HCDCC Edition

Remember, John Fullerton is a registered Republican, and Lisa Ollivier was an HCDCC endorsed candidate.

Melinda could have voted for whoever she chooses and remained an Associate Member.  She simply cannot publicly endorse a candidate once the HCDCC endorses one.  There are grey areas in the HCDCC bylaws where good people will disagree and Richard brought those up in his post.  These inconsistencies are being worked on so hopefully, going forward, this particular familiar family drama will no longer happen.

In the mean time I hope we can maintain the relatively nuanced discussion in public that we’ve had during the meetings.  We’ll see.

Also, John (Chiv), we have three registered Democrats in the DA’s race already.  We are still a political organization and do have to usually support Democrats.  Sometimes we chose not to endorse registered Democrats, if, in a nutshell, they don’t act like Democrats.

Who’s the judge of that you might ask?  The voter-elected Members of the HCDCC.  Believe it or not they are on registered Democrats ballots once every 4 years.

Another reason “Why You Need to Vote!”

From the Times Standard November 3rd, 2013
From the Times Standard page A3 November 3rd, 2013

64 thoughts on “Information Inoculation: HCDCC Edition

  1. John Fullerton says:

    Shame on you Jon.

    Like I have told you before, school boards are all about the education of our children and nothing to do with any partisan issues. School boards don’t vote or even discuss the war in Iraq, increasing taxes on the rich or even immigration issues. I had many, many Democrats among the 500 people who publicly endorsed me. I had many, many Democrats among the 325 people who put my campaign signs in their yards. I had many Democrats among the 150 people who contributed money to my campaign.

    You decided to work for my opponent without the slightest knowledge of her or her qualifications or any knowledge of me or my qualifications and experience. To you is was all about who was a D or an R and that is just plain sad.

    Your kind of thinking is what has sunk politics to its lowest level all around the country.

    1. Anonymous says:

      Once again, the vast majority of eligible voters do not vote and the vast majority of your supporters are republicans.

  2. Big Tent Dem says:

    “The HCDCC leadership is pushing to make every election a partisan election. I am not enthusiastic. Look what partisanship has done to us nationally: gridlock. I voted for John Fullerton. I’d do it again.”

    – Julie Timmons

    So will Julie be the next one purged? In a way it doesn’t really matter, the hyper-partisans are already pushing her, and people like her, away.

    So much for the Big Tent approach. Have fun playing in your narrow little pup tent with your perfectly-orthodox little group of True Believers. But don’t be surprised when you keep losing elections.

    1. Absolutely not, she did not endorse against an HCDCC endorsed candidate. Supervisor Bass didn’t endorse either and her standing as an HCDCC leader isn’t in question either.

      1. Big Tent Dem says:

        So she can stay as long as she keeps her mouth shut and isn’t honest with the public about what candidates she actually prefers. Great, well done, hell of a “democracy” you’re promoting. No wonder she’s fed up with the hyper-partisans on the HCDCC and unenthusiastic about the HCDCC. And kudos to her for having the guts to speak out about it.

  3. Big Tent Dem says:

    Interesting that the 3rd district (Lovelace’s district) get 6 members on the HCDCC, but the other 4 districts only get 4 members each. I suppose that must be some of those “small ‘d’ democratic values” you’re so proud of. Smaller and smaller all the time.

    1. Big Tent Dem says:

      I see they also don’t list the names of their officers (Chair, Treasurer, etc.) on their website. Though I can hardly blame them — I’d be ashamed too, if I was them.

    2. BTD, this is all done with arithmetic. The beret-wearing comrade cabal clique that has hijacked the HCDCC has nothing to do with this. The number of members is proportional to the number of voters in a pre-determined year. I’m not sure which year that was, a guess would be the census, but I’d have to look it up. The 6 means basically that the 3rd brought out 6/22nds of either the votes or registration. Like the vote and procedure Wednesday night, it’s not as conspiratorial, nefarious, or undemocratic as those who use this sort of publicity to their great advantage would like you to think.

      If you want to get upset about what is happening with “Democracy” please search for one of my blogs on the Private ( Public Participation Workgroup.

      Also, Chair – Bob Servie, Vice Chair – Milt Boyd, Secretary, Barbara Kennedy, Treasurer Me (Jon Yalcinkaya) Vice Treasurer Phillis Seawright.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Last time I looked up the word “democrat” it used to be a political party, ie, partisan! It’s up to their committee to decide if they will embrace traditional democratic values of legislating for the least among us…or buy-in to the “Big Tent” BS distraction that hides that group’s successful agenda to legislate for the local developers.

    1. Big Tent Dem says:

      Feel free to explain how the School Board election that led to Ms. Ciarabellini being ousted has anything to do with “developers.” Okay, I’ll save you some time — it doesn’t. That’s where the “hyper” part of “hyper-partisanship” comes in. The hyper-partisans of the controlling HCDCC clique are insisting that even non-voting Associate members of HCDCC cannot publicly support anyone in even a non-partisan school board election, unless that person has been endorsed by the HCDCC. No, the HCDCC members are required to be dishonest with the public about their true feelings in order to remain in the good graces of the HCDCC control freaks. Disgusting.

  5. Big Tent Dem – are you feeling the same amount of contempt for the property-rightization that is going on right now in “hyper” drive in the Planning Commission?

    This is the same language and narrative that pops up each time conservative Democrats who don’t get their way lash out. It’s been Richard Mark’s mo for years now and it brought Supervisor Bass into the party and with a similar subversion of branding, Supervisor Fennell used the Democratic brand to bring the most conservative of land use policies to our Planning Commision.

    The Democrats endorsed correctly on the ESB ballot. They unanimously (if memory serves, or at the very least uncontroversially) endorsed Lisa Ollivier, a pro-family, pro-student, pro-teacher, pro-public candidate. Is that somehow partisan to endorse the only Democrat in the race who happened to also support Democratic policies.

    It’s the latter part of the last sentence that the haters forget. We do need to endorse Democrats who are Democrats AND act like Democrats. It’s important.

    If you are a Democrat and really want to get discusted, meet me at the next Planning Commisison meeting, I’ll fill you in on what our 4th and 2nd Democratic (but rightly unendorsed) Distric Supervisors’ appointments to the Commission are doing to the GPU. If you are disgusted now, I hate to think how you will feel after seeing the hyper-partisan ship in that room.

    1. Big Tent Dem says:

      Wait a minute — was Mr. Fullerton anti-family, anti-student, anti-teacher, and anti-public? Or he just didn’t have the requisite “D” after his name? And, by the way, isn’t it true that Ms. Ollivier refused to debate Mr. Fullerton? Is that your idea of “acting like a Democrat?” It’s certainly not acting like a “small ‘d’ democrat.”

      I just don’t see where Ms. Ciarabellini did anything wrong with regard to this School Board election, either ethically, ideologically or according to the HCDCC bylaws as actually written — but she was banished anyway, in service of “party discipline.” Her offense was, simply put, telling the public the truth about who she supported in a non-partisan School Board race. Had she lied and said she supported Ms. Ollivier, or had she kept mum about who she thought would be better for the job (in essence misleading her constituents about her true feelings), she’d still be on the HCDCC. Think about that — that’s what this “gag rule” does, it encourages any less-than-100%-lockstep party leaders to either be dishonest with rank-and-file members, or to resign. Which leaves you with an increasingly narrow, groupthink-dominated group, and/or those willing to lie or mislead in order to maintain their position. Pretty much the exact opposite of what is needed for a healthy, functional, publicly-beneficial political organization.

      You seem to want to attribute all dissatisfaction with this gag rule, and these ridiculous purges, to people who don’t share your policy goals — but to do so you must ignore clear evidence to the contrary. For instance, Julie Timmons appears to share many of your policy goals, she appears to share your concerns about people with questionable commitment to core Democratic principles wearing the party label — but she also appears to have some very serious reservations about the direction that the hyper-partisans now in control of the HCDCC are taking the committee. The point being, you can ignore these concerns if you like, but you’re fooling yourself if you think only your policy opponents share them. And boy are you going to hate it if those policy opponents win control of the HCDCC and start using these same gag rules and purges against you and your allies. I truly hope that does not happen, because unlike you I think the party leadership can and should encompass a broad spectrum. But I would be hard-pressed to argue that you and your pals don’t *deserve* the turnabout-is-fair-play treatment if (when) you find yourself in the minority on the HCDCC.

      But, you know, carry on. As we’ve seen in most recent elections, most rank-and-file Democrats clearly don’t give a rip what your little circle-jerk club thinks or says about anything — a trend that will only increase as you continue to marginalize yourselves further and further with these petty purges.

      And rightly so: There is no better indication that a particular clique within an organization lacks confidence in their own message than when that clique attempts to muzzle and/or expel those who disagree with them, rather than allow the rank-and-file of the organization to hear all sides and make up their own minds.

  6. John Fullerton says:

    Big Tent, you are debating a Kool Aid drinker whose mind has been closed for years, you are wasting your time. He does not think past his prejudices.

    Liberal Jon, your rationalization is laughable. I too am a “pro-family, pro-student, pro-teacher and pro-public candidate (whatever that means”. You are only looking for an excuse to infect your partisanship in a non partisan race.

    1. Big Tent Dem says:

      Guess I’m just a glutton for punishment…but it appears that you are, too. Maybe we should start a support group!


    2. Big Tent All I can say, is this is such a powerful narrative. It’s got it all. It has the big bad libs in control and the poor rebellious principled Dems down but not out. And I do note that it is being written by anons, Republicans, Libertarians, Richard Marks and I’m sure soon Matthew O. It’s a well written story Big Tent. We’ve been treated to it for years now. I used to buy it and I unfortunately know good people who buy it now.

      What the people who are buying this don’t know is where the real power lies. It isn’t in the HCDCC that is rendered fairly ineffectual given it’s use by conservative Democrats. Yes we won last November and that was great for Eureka’s Schools, but the Eureka City Council sits at 5-1 Conservative to Linda and the BOS at 4 to 1 Conservative to Lovelace.

      Who am I to define “conservative”. These Boards are not conservative at all, they are actually Democratic 3-2 in case of Eureka with a (and a ? Major) and 3-2 in the case of the BOS. That’s the benefit of the above narrative. One might believe, hey, we are living in a Democratic County. That’s what Congressman Huffman apparently thinks as he love, love, loves Supervisors Sundberg and Bass.

      You are right Big Tent Dem. I am part ofa powerful, nefarious, closed group full of gag rules and banishments. We brand our opponents as Anti-family and we force otherwise good people to lie. We demand lock-step of our followers and take joy in purging the non-believers. This is our comeuppance because we just don’t get it.

      The problem is our tent just isn’t big enough, we’ve just got to be nicer.

      I don’t agree at all with your analysis BTD, but it does make a good yarn.

      Julie is someone I have a deep reservoir of affection for. She didn’t write a narrative, she wrote her experience and I agree with much of it – just not all.

      1. Big Tent Dem says:

        I didn’t say and don’t believe that your gag-and-purge clique within the HCDCC is either powerful or nefarious. Just narrow-minded and wrongheaded. But that is your prerogative. And it is the prerogative of others to ignore or oppose the direction your clique has chosen to take the HCDCC. Your point that the HCDCC is not where most real power resides is certainly true — and that’s how it should be. The real power lies with the voters, as it should.

        1. What exactly is the direction our clique is taking the HCDCC? We will be having our DOTY at the Elk’s this year, we had it at the Ingomar Club last year. We have a Ways and Means Chairperson, Virginia Bass who was a Republican less than how many years ago? 4? And has been a dependable vote for appointments and votes for developers.

          How should voters who choose to say “protect agriculture and timberland for the long term” organize if not with the Democrats?

          What about “protecting natural resources for the long term”.

          I thought that we would be a party to fight for these values in addition to fighting for teacher-endorsed candidates.

          And if we are to take all comers into the Dems, how does that work? Is it like a little pre-democracy before the actual democracy. You are clear about the corruption that one party (or no-party as Mr. Fullerton would like it) rule leads to? Because we are living through that corruption and double speak right now.

          If not the Democrats, where do working-class voters go who would rather not celebrate their crowning fundraiser at a private club that the Exalted Leader describes as a club largely of successful, conservative businessmen?

          I don’t think the HCDCC is the clique you think it is. It’s a successful, imperfect gathering of individuals working with parlimentary procedures to try to elect Democrats that act like Democrats. Right now we are succeeding at the electing Democrats, just not on the part of electing the ones that act like Democrats.

          That’s what I’m trying to change, we need Democrats that vote for democratic policies.

          1. Big Tent Dem says:

            “What exactly is the direction our clique is taking the HCDCC?”

            In the direction of gagging and purging in the interest of narrow factionalism and top-down control.

              1. Big Tent Dem says:

                Your evasive attempt to change the subject reveals that at some level you are aware that the criticisms of the HCDCC’s gag and purge approach are valid, that you lack a persuasive defense, and that you are uncomfortable about that. Which is a good sign, I suppose.

                1. Wait, how did your gag and purge criticism become “the (gag and purge) “criticisms”. If we say things twice does that double the complaint value? You are the only anon(or person) using these extreme and incorrect characterizations of what actually happened. I do hope to post a write up meeting by meeting, motion by motion so people get and idea of how insincere these criticisms are.

                  (Before this comment the total number of uses of the word gag were 6 by you and 1 by me replying to your either insincere or misinformed/misguided passion on this.)

                  1. Big Tent Dem says:

                    More evasion…can’t say I’m surprised. How sad that not only are you unable to admit the validity of this criticism, you can’t even accept the sincerity of it. This seems to be a symptom of extreme close-mindedness. I disagree with your approach, but at least I can accept that you’re sincere.

                    Richard Marks has criticized the gag and purge campaign on his blog numerous times, and there has been plenty of criticism of it in the relevant comment threads in the past. Meanwhile Julie Timmons said in her post the other day: “The HCDCC leadership is pushing to make every election a partisan election. I am not enthusiastic. Look what partisanship has done to us nationally: gridlock. I voted for John Fullerton. I’d do it again… Politics can be destructive and ugly, as was demonstrated Wednesday night. ” I assume she was talking about the gag and purge stuff — if not, then I guess I misunderstood.

                    Or maybe you’re just complaining about the terms “gag” and “purge.” If so, sorry, but what you have in place is a classic example of a “gag rule” (a rule requiring people to shut up in order to avoid a penalty). And when you kick someone out of a political organization due to their views, that’s a classic example of a “purge.” You may prefer more pleasant-sounding euphemisms, in fact I’m sure you would, but that is just one more thing you don’t get to control.

                    I know, it must be tough being someone who wants to control other peoples’ speech in a country that specifically values free speech. Fortunately, with the HCDCC you seem to have a little niche locally where you are able to do so, at least to a limited degree. Enjoy it while you can, it may not last.

                    1. yes, it is the language. What is it you want me to address exactly. I think this is where the evasion charge started.

                      “In the direction of gagging and purging in the interest of narrow factionalism and top-down control.”

                      1) OK, let’s start with the “purging”. Are you against “purging” Members if they break the bylaws, assuming the y are clear?

                      2) What about “gagging”. Are you OK with the concept of rules to prevent people from publicly endorsing HCDCC endorsed candidates?

                      If not, what should we do proactively to help define who we are. Is it one’s self-definition as Democrat that is the only factor?

                      Regarding your concern trolling about my future if/when conservatives take the HCDCC. I’m on solid ground. I think the Constitution protects our free speech rights. Believe me, I think to the person the HCDCC thinks I’m a “pain in the ass”. I’ve been proactive as I push the limits of my right to free speech, vs the right of the HCDCC to be a functioning partisan organization. Blogs I think are a special problem for the HCDCC or any political organization. If they endorse Supervisor Bass, I won’t be endorsing her opponent, I may or may not continue to hound her and her team for all the misteps and backward policies they have taken, but I don’t see how they can force me to take down all that I’ve written.

                      If they can, you know what, I’ll be a good soldier and do that between the endorsement and the election and then put it back up after the election. So, don’t worry your concern troll self about this, I’ve thought about this quite a bit, and unlike Melinda and Marian, but like Virginia, Richard, and Julie, I was proactive and accepted what I knew might be a part of being part of being in a political organization.

                      Question, does your employer gag your free speach? After hours? During work hours? The nerve, how can he or she do this in America?

          2. John Fullerton says:

            “Teacher endorsed candidates” ? No. Once again Jon the “teachers” did not endorse my opponent, the teacher’s union executive board did and did so without allowing a vote by the rank & file teachers many of whom supported me.

            The union executive board cares only about money – period. Patrick Riggs made that clear in his e-mail sent out to rally the teachers.

            BTW, do you care how I know what the president of the teacher’s union & what David Demant the head of her campaign were telling the teachers? That particularly vexed poor old David. I knew because a half dozen teachers were forwarding their e-mails to me to help me.

            And Jon, it is tiring talking to you when you ignore the points of others and then talk around them again & again. Do you listen & comprehend others well?

            And what about YOUR hypocrisy? You voted to limit campaigns acceptance of contributions to $1,500. Yet you are clearly comfortable with the fact the union (on orders by Patrick Riggs, David DeMant, Paul Bressoud, Matt Muldoon, Quiteria Perriera and a couple of others) spent almost $20,000 on her campaign! You aren’t bothered that the same union has spent almost $40,000 in 2 1/2 years to get their two hand picked people on the school board!

            1. “No. Once again Jon the “teachers” did not endorse my opponent, the teacher’s union executive board did and did so without allowing a vote by the rank & file teachers many of whom supported me.”

              I’m going to say that is a distinction without a difference. Reading the TS, there were a bunch of teachers speaking out against you, a handful for you.

              “You voted to limit campaigns acceptance of contributions to $1,500.” Of what do you speak?

              What was your final tally Mr. F? I’m waiting to get ETA’s 460 to get their final numbers. Your final 460 was pretty substantial, especially that PRT line item.

              I’m really thinking you missed that one political ad that ran before the filing deadline of 10/19. I can’t imagine it would have cost less than $100 and thus be unitemized. I’m not giving up on figuring that out. I don’t know how it would be legal to pay for that without at least documenting an accrued expense.

              Not to mention the unquestionable legality, but certainly circumspect ethics of printing business ads with the headline “EXPERIENCE” throughout October. Funny how after the election you found not as much, if any urgency in advertising your business.

              That’s all neither here nor there, the election is over and it’s simply time to tally what happened and to find out what we can do better.

              I’m not embarrassed about union spending. I just started a unionized job for the first time in 15 years and it’s so nice to feel like a human again. Unions, even public ones serve an invaluable service to their members and an even more important role to the community at large. I understand that we are going to differ on this.

              Finally, once the tally is finished, who do you think will have spent more, you or the union? I’ll bet you a hot fudge sundae it was you. Unions represent the last man standing in our country’s insane financial laws for the left. Without them we would be the free market paradise my Father’s homeland of Turkey is or Mexico is closer to home.

              Mr F. our country’s inequality is at unsustainably high extremes, unions will be one tool to help get us back where we should be. Another one is something we can both agree on – a world-class education for all our students.

              Thanks as always for the back and forth. – Jon Yalcinkaya.

              1. John Fullerton says:

                Hypocrite. The Dec 31 460’s have been filed all you have to do is go look. The union outspent me and that is beside the point. I was forced to raise funds after watching the union spend almost $20,000 two years ago to defeat the then school board president who spent almost nothing. I had somewhere between 150-200 people donate to my campaign. My opponent had the union and maybe three other people. The record for spending on a school board race in Humboldt County history was $5,000 before the obscene amount the Eureka Teacher’s Association raised for the 2011 campaign.

                Just like my supporters on the Democrat Central Committee were threatened & bullied and then some punished, so too were teachers told by inference and some directly by union leaders they better not come out publicly for me. But still more than a dozen endorsed me and another 6 contributed $99 to my campaign.

                The Dem Central Committee voted in favor of limiting campaign contributions to $1,500 at their last meeting I am assuming you voted aye. The teacher’s union has spent almost $40,000 buying two ECS board seats in the last 2 1/2 years. This is an absolute conflict of interest. A conflict that puts the interests of the students secondary to the union leader’s pockets. And by the way, most of the union exec board don’t even live in Eureka and only one sends his child to Eureka City Schools.

                What should be the #1 priority of public education, students or union leader pockets ?

                My 30th year of business anniversary was last summer. I ran ads in celebration just like Aalfs & Evans just ran ads for their 40th.

                And once again, despite your prejudice, hatred & bigotry, school boards are about the children and nothing to do with divisive and bitter partisanship.

                Don’t bother answering I am tired of your evasive or non answers.

                1. Since you brought up hatred, bigotry and bullying, here is another reason a change of leadership is a good thing.* All our students deserve the right to feel at home in our schools, not just some or even most. Also, please note that this suit was not brought until after the election. I don’t know if it was filed as soon as possible or they held off, partially to maintain the integrity of the election. If it was an intentional delay I think you would agree with me that that was the right thing to do.

                  The anti-union narrative you demonstrated s a fundamental belief of conservatives and Republicans. Both now and throughout the campaign the caricatures you created of both union representatives and teachers was demonstrably (through meeting many of them) fals, and if nothing else lacked grace. You yourself do not recognize your own hypocrisy in missing your own partisan biases methinks.

                  For the record, I have no idea what you think I hate. For one, if you think I hate you or are somehow prejudiced against you, nothing could be further from the truth. I think you are a stand up guy as far as “debating”. You show up and you use your name. I appreciate that more than you know, and I wish more people would demonstrate that integrity.


                2. “Hypocrite. The Dec 31 460′s have been filed all you have to do is go look. The union outspent me and that is beside the point. ”

                  You are the accountant. How? I’m looking at the 12/31/13 460’s.

                  Calendar year to date total expenditures made… (Line 11 Column B)

                  Eureka Teacher’s Association – $12,775.01
                  John Fullerton – $19,803.93

                  Granted, I don’t have Lisa’s end of year, but the ETA did most of her spending in the earlier filing period – her total up to then was less than $1,000.

                  You also spent $9,000 of your own money on this campaign. Wow.

                  1. John Fullerton says:

                    Why would you be surprised the ETA made mistakes on their report?

                    But I am not going to tell you where they are until you finally start answering questions instead of evading all of them.

                    I seem to recall that the ETA treasurer wrote a letter to the editor opposing me even though we have never talked or even met and she lives in McKinleyville. Do you think I should report her ? Do you think I should report Ollivier for her non filing of her final report?

                    1. This is what you said “The Dec 31 460′s have been filed all you have to do is go look. The union outspent me” Are you saying that wasn’t true.

                      “Do you think I should report her ? Do you think I should report Ollivier for her non filing of her final report?” ABSOLUTELY! That’s why we have an adversarial system. Political opponents (not enemy) will be much more interested in calling out their opponent than admitting their own mistakes.

    3. John, I can’t take these calls for non-partisanship seriously. Did you have any power to stop the ECS from advertising on KINS. Isn’t it convenient to call for non-partisan political discussions after Bob B., Rush and Sean get their fill in?

      If we don’t have politics to be able to discuss policy, then only those with the most money or most connections will win most of the elections. The voting populace for off year elections was at 20 % way before I arrived, and it’s something I’d like to change.

      What I do appreciate about you John, is your use of your name. I appreciate your integrity on that. What I mean by pro-family is we have to fight for work-wage jobs. By pro-public I mean we cannot accept selling off school property to meet short term financial goals. The goal of conservatives is to continue privatizing as much as the public sphere as possible.

      I didn’t have a vote on the HCDCC to vote for Lisa Ollivier, but I would have voted to endorse her to like I voted for her instead of you last November. I did this because of the endorsement of the Eureka Teacher’s Association, because Conservatives do not have the interested base to fight for a strong and effective Common Core curriculum and conservatives do not understand the importance of fighting back this charter system which is the first step in a goal of privatizing as much of our public education as possible.

      Politics is no complicated. Solutions are not as difficult as some might make it seem. The thing is, there are vested interests with money to spend and ideas on how the public at large should run it’s business.

    4. Anonymous says:

      Last time I checked the HCDCC is a partisan political organization whose members have been agonizing over how they will best maintain the values of this county’s democratic party and they have every right to do so. The republican central committee would have done the exact same thing had a member supported candidates opposed by the group, what do you think would happen had a member worn a Bonnie Neely sweatshirt to their 2010 meetings?


      1. Big Tent Dem says:

        “The republican central committee would have done the exact same thing”

        So we should be more like the Republicans, purging dissenters and becoming a narrower, more dogmatic, more ideologically homogeneous group that caters to a shrinking base of increasingly extreme True Believers so caught up in their own groupthink that they are pretty much incapable of seeing any other point of view? Great plan, it’s working so well for the Republicans.

  7. John Fullerton says:

    So many misconceptions so little time.

    ECS advertises on SEVEN different radio stations including a liberal talk station, KGOE.

    Excess school properties were sold (I opposed the closure of Jefferson) yes but the funds were not used to “meet short term financial goals’ that was a lie put out by the Teacher Association Exec Board. The funds were used to modernize Lincoln School.

    Another lie put out by the union Exec Bd was the reason they supported my opponent. The real reason is all about money & nothing but. They were demanding raises of 8-18%, we offered 3%. We pointed out to them there demand would bankrupt the school district in 18-24 months and our offer of 3% was higher than any other school district in the county. Patrick Riggs even endorsed me when I ran four years ago.

    I do not oppose Common Core in general. My opponent didn’t even know what it was. I do NOT support the charter system. Some charter schools are OK most are not.

    But you know all that because I have told you this before.

    1. John, I appreciate your reply. I will get involved in the School Board soon. Education is near and dear to my heart as it is to yours. I’m just a little preoccupied with the GPU. Once I do, I’ll be better argue my position – just know, that I never added the anti’s nor did I mean that you are anti family. We are all pro family, pro-student. If you are as pro-public as I am, then you’d lose a great deal of your base if you advertised it. We’ll see how this all goes going forward. ECS need continued attention from all of us in the community and I’d like to think we’d both want more people involved in the election next time.

      “I do not oppose Common Core in general” is not a great starting point. It is going to happen and to make it work, we are going to have to lead and we’ll probably have to proactively get teachers accustomed to it AND we are going to have to address much of the fear mongering that is coming from the conservative right wing media. It’s really ridiculous.

      If you are interested the nyt had an editorial on their state’s grappling with Common Core.

      So you know, there are people on my “side” that are still wondering if I was/am a plant for you or the right. I’m not sure if that speaks to how ineffective I am as a writer or if that is a sign that I do try to be fair. I hope it’s the latter.

  8. “Friendship and family should always trump politics.” Quote by Liberal Jon. Your hypocrisy has no limits. You chastize me and accuse me of conservative policies constantly with great verbal hubris to the point of psychotic behavior when I support candidates who are friends. You are really starting to piss me off.

    Melinda was a non voting “Associate” member of the HCDCC. She should not have been held to the same standard of the “Elected” members of the HCDCC. Period. The HCDCC has many hypocrites and should be called to the carpet. Many who voted Melinda have endorsed republicans and green party candidates in the past. Ex-officos should be held to the standard since they have full voting rights. And they endorse Republicans with no recourse.

    1. Richard. I get why you support who you do and I understand why you do it. I think loyalty to your friends is understandable and a laudable attribute.

      I don’t think we should allow our Democratic Party policy’s to be shifted because of friendships. There is a distinction. One person’s motivations and actions. And the policy recommendations of an organization. I don’t fault you personally for supporting your friend Mike Newman, I think it is a disaster for local politics and will call it out as such. Follow?

      If not, that’s fair, but I would never ever discourage Julie from voting for her old friend. When she told me, at a GPU meeting btw, I didn’t nor would I ever hold it against her.

      However, I’m going to fight to move the Democratic where it should be today, not where is should have been in 1970. If fellow Democrats don’t agree, I’m going to try to explain why we are having the divisions we are having.

      My one question for you Richard is this. When the new by laws get passed and they are clear that Associates are held to the same standard as Members (assuming for the sake of argument they are not) You said the HCDCC members were “bully’s” for removing Melinda. You also said during the meeting that it would be appropriate to vote on this issue once the bylaws were updated. Assuming, in the future, with the new bylaws the same exact thing happens. Would you be OK with removing the Associate Member too? Wouldn’t that make you a bully.

      What I’m trying to get at is this “bully” narrative. We have to do this in some circumstances right? And is would that be considered bullying or is it only bullying in this case because you really believe that Melinda and Marian did not understand the by-laws the way the majority of the HCDCC did?

    2. Anonymous says:

      Richard Marks is “pissed off” at all the “hypocrisy” of a partisan democratic political group purging those that they believe present the largest challenge to the group’s ideology.


      The alterations required to bring the HCDCC By-Laws in-line with the state party, (to include associate members) are minor and should be done at once…case closed.

      When Mr. Marks contains his outrage, maybe he can explain his violation of Humboldt County Code HCC262.5-3(c) and (j), when he erected a structure blocking pedestrians at the courthouse in support of Virginia Bass, a signer of this ordinance.


  9. Not A Native says:

    Generally I avoid this blog because though I almost always vote for a Democrat, I’m now registered with no party affiliation. One reason is I’ve noticed that in HumCo liberalism(modernism) is equated to Soviet Regine and the specter of godless commies infiltrating among us to seize control and send us to gulags and our children to re-education camps is seriously considered a real possibility by a good number of Democrats. So its puzzling to me to see debates where people argue on the one hand that the HCDCC is irrelevant and suspect in its proceedings and yet on the other seeking its endorsement and imprimatur.

    But the purpose of my post is to draw Jon’s attention to this NPR article concerning Republican fortunes in urban areas, with an eye to understanding why the identity of Democrats in HumCo is so conflicted and why Republicans seek to align themselves with the Democratic brand. There really isn’t urbanism, as defined in the article, in HumCo. The local Democrat tradition is a vestige of the legacy era when the timber industry and labor union movement were at a peak. That era is no more, but the memory of it is enshrined in local politics in peculiar ways. In essence, HumCo is an exurb, as socially defined in the NPR article, with a conflicting Democrat self identity.

    1. Thank you for the link NAN. Now that Eric’s not as interested in blogging, one of the things I’ll miss about SP is your comments and your links. Thank you for posting this link. I am fascinated by the demographics of politics especially urban v rural and why. I don’t agree with everything in it. One thing that drew my attention is the insinuation, if it wasn’t said explicitly, that there is a class or income disparity in urban v rural. I think by default, the re-invigoration or urban areas over the past 40 years gentrified those areas. I don’t think this is inevitable if planners plan for this. I don’t know how, but when I think about what we could be planning for, making sure rural= affordable urban = unaffordable is considered and weighted heavily.

      Just to add this, I also don’t place any value judgement at all on rural vs urban, both are…there… and absolutely necessary and integral to who we are.

      Regarding those friends and those fears of godless commies as part of the HumCo liberalism. Let them know at least this godless commie (not a commie, am technically godless) gets that and although I am interested in educating our children, it’s not re-educating them. The Gulags in the density areas should be as horrible as, say, extended oldtown Eureka, Arcata, and Blue Lake for the rural areas, and the godlessness will stop exactly wherever the faith(s) begin.

    2. Anonymous says:

      “There really isn’t urbanism, as defined in the article, in HumCo.”

      And yet, Eureka ranks among the top in California for most of the urban problems…

  10. Big Tent Dem says:

    Well I notice your 15:18 comment has no “reply” link for some reason. Perhaps that’s just a glitch? Because it would be a little weird to ask a bunch of questions and then disable replies to that thread. Kind of appropriate, though, in a way, given your unhealthy need to try to control other people’s speech.

    Assuming it was just a glitch and you actually wanted answers to your questions, I’ll provide at least a few brief ones:

    “1) OK, let’s start with the ‘purging.’ Are you against ‘purging’ Members if they break the bylaws, assuming they are clear?”

    I would still be against purging people for personally supporting / endorsing people other than the HCDCC endorsee. The HCDCC can make its endorsement, and individual members should be able to agree or disagree, and not have to mislead the voters about their position in order to stay on the HCDCC. That being said, unjust but clear would at least be one step better than unjust AND unclear, which is what you have now.

    “2) What about “gagging”. Are you OK with the concept of rules to prevent people from publicly endorsing HCDCC endorsed candidates?”

    I assume you mean “rules to prevent people from publicly endorsing THE OPPONENTS OF HCDCC endorsed candidates.” My preference would be “no” (see above). Instead of putting effort into gagging and purging dissenters, I think it would be a much better use of time and effort (not to mention a much more moral high-ground position) to instead put more effort into promoting the HCDCC endorsed candidates, registering voters, informing the public on where the candidates stand on issues, etc. Remember the old saying “the best response to ‘bad’ speech is more ‘good’ speech.”

    However, if you are bound and determined to continue your gag and purge policy, you could at least be more consistent and less hypocritical about it. As Richard Marks pointed out, your ex-officio members — who, unlike Ms. Ciarabellini, are actual voting members — are still allowed to (and in some cases do) endorse non-Democrats, against Democrats. So here you have a situation where some specially-privileged voting members are allowed to endorse non-Democrats, against Democrats, while other voting members are not — and now even the non-voting associate members are being held to a standard that the voting ex-officio members are not held to! So you’ve got hypocrisy, elitism, and inconsistency and lack of clarity all in play there.

    Of course one way to address that would be to make everyone, including the ex-officio members, subject to the same gag rule. Good for the geese, good for the ganders. But of course those ex-officios won’t appreciate being gagged, so the other approach to making it consistent is just stop trying to gag any of the members. This has the benefit of not wasting your time and effort on ugly, divisive efforts to suppress speech you don’t like rather than promoting speech you do like.

    “If not, what should we do proactively to help define who we are. Is it one’s self-definition as Democrat that is the only factor?”

    See above. Put your efforts into spreading your own message, instead of trying to stop others from spreading theirs.

    1. WordPress runs out of nested replies. I think I set it at the maximum.

      “Because it would be a little weird to ask a bunch of questions and then disable replies to that thread. Kind of appropriate, though, in a way, given your unhealthy need to try to control other people’s speech”

      Also appropriate that you went where you did with your observation.

      I’m not a lawyer “Big Tent”. I’m not a bylaws person. What I do keep track of is the big picture and policy.

      However, bylaws and rules have to be followed. It is my nature to make sure I am well within the laws and rules and ask questions of bosses so it doesn’t become an issue. I think I’ve discussed how I would have, and do, handle this situation at the boundary of free speech and “gagging”.

      I would like to address those concerns. In order to do so, I’m going to need to go back to the minutes and take them point by point. This was a long process that began last fall when we endorsed Lisa Ollivier. I don’t know that issues like the ex-officio concern had no part of the discussion and are either a straw man that fits well into the “elite” narrative or a real concern that just hasn’t been brought up in meetings or public discourse until now.

      Again, I have to emphasize this. I am not a lawyer, my two brothers are, but I did not get that gene. I am not one to parse language, statutes and bylaws. I’m more interested in the big picture. However, I do realized that to continue to improve in this organization I will need to know these inside and out. I’m not evading or being evasive, I’m simply asking for time.

      So here is my general question. Do you understand and see the larger political concern? If we are a “Big Tent” what is the point? The Republicans have collapsed. Matthew Owen told me that one of the benefits of the Dems over the Republicans for his interests is we actually have a ground game. Now, he did not attribute causality to that, in other words he did not say that’s why he and Virginia became more active, but people can draw their own conclusions.

      What I can’t understand, that here we are in a county that votes 65% left 35% right at the top of the ticket. We have 3 of 5 Dems on the Eureka City Council. We have 3 of 5 Dems on the Board of Supervisors. Yet we enact measurably conservative policies. The latest example is Supervisor Bass’ re-campaign announcement. Are these political incongruities a coincidence or the effect of very intelligent campaigns to diminish the power of the local left leaning organization.

      Yes, this..

      ” put more effort into promoting the HCDCC endorsed candidates, registering voters, informing the public on where the candidates stand on issues, etc.”

      Is proactive and great and this is the heart of all our efforts – and “more” is always in order. However, how do we inform the public through the HCDCC on a candidate stands on an issue if our Democratic elected official is in exact opposition to the party platform? There’s a problem there, yes?

      Here is another problem that we might disagree on and another fundamental reason why even though we have a strongly left electorate, we elect conservative local officials. You are familiar of course with Eureka’s at large voting system. I’m going to guess you would argue this is fine and promotes democracy as each person conceivably gets 5 votes if they take the time to vote. However, this system is most clearly unconstitutional and would be a winnable law-suit as soon as a member of a recognized minority ran and lost an election. It’s fundamentally undemocratic, even though a democratic (ish) argument is made to support it. Even if you wouldn’t support our at-large Ward system with that logic, people do.

      I know, evasion. I’m not, I’m simply trying to make the larger point that there are systemic policies AND narratives in place to broaden the “tent” base of the Democrats because a cohesive and winning pitch CANNOT be made from the Republicans or conservatives. A winning pitch in Humboldt usually includes; accepting the importance of social safety nets for our community., accepting the help of nonprofits to benefit the most needy among us, accepting and acknowledging the importance of unions in helping to fight for living wage jobs, accepting that “public good” is a good, accepting that women don’t need a separate group in their political structure – men and women make the best decisions and do the best work when its done together, accepting that global warming is real and human-made and that a large percentage of our population is at sea level.

      These, again, are reasons the Republicans could never proudly and loudly run for local office and is why everyone now wants to be a Democrat. My question is this. Where in the process do we “purge” a Chet Albin? Someone who is clearly insincere and is using the “D” brand for political purposes. Maybe you are, but I’m not one who would like to start investigating people’s lives to when we accept Associate Members. I want to accept all comers into the tent with a loud WELCOME! So how does a political organization deal with this without purging when clearly defined (yes in this case, this is the contention – we agree that clarity is the goal here) standards are broken? And if purging is in the end OK? would it be to much to tone down that word to “remove”? Because if we do agree that “purging” would on occasion have to occur, can we agree that when it was done in a manner you would find acceptable, it could be called “removal” or will it always be “purging”? If it’s always “purging” then I really don’t think you have the best interests of process at heart.

      Again, if this does not exactly address your questions about the clarity of bylaws and the fairness of our ex-offiio polity forgive me. I will get to it if you care, but I have a feeling that like Mr. F. You will drop out before we get to the answers. If you have specific questions, let me know. I’ll work on answering those first.

        1. I don’t think you are clear on the concept of filibuster. Limited time is critical to it. There is no limit to space.

          If it’s the length that bothers you here is my question. How do you prevent a Chet Albin from being a Dem. Let’s say a Palin clone runs here, Chet’s a Member, there is no question about the rules for a member. Still a “gag” and “purge” or could we agree to call it a removal. He would have know the rules going in.

          I’m trying to figure out if you are being sincere. If so, we are an open club with the only criteria being you are a registered democrat, how do we prevent people who might be trying to monkey-wrench the Committee?

          1. Big Tent Dem says:

            You can’t prevent a Chet Albin from being a Democrat. But you can run a Democrat you like better against him. If the majority of voting members of the HCDCC prefer your candidate, the organization can endorse your candidate, support them, raise funds for them, knock on doors for them, run ads for them, hold events for them, etc. You can do all these things — things that actually matter — without gagging or purging anyone, without forcing elected members to choose between either misleading the public about where they stand, or being forced out of an office they were elected to by rank-and-file Democrats.

            If a few members of the HCDCC dissent from the majority on the HCDCC and prefer Albin, and they personally endorse him, contrary to the majority of the HCDCC, well — so what? So Albin gets to list them as supporters, which they are, the dissenting HCDCC member gets to be honest with the public, and rank and file voters who voted the dissenting member onto the HCDCC don’t have their votes negated by the committee.

            As far as the “monkeywrenching” concern, actual voting members of the HCDCC are elected, or appointed by people who are elected. So there’s no danger of anyone being able to “monkeywrench” anything, unless they are voted into office, or appointed by someone who is voted into office. And if they are, that’s the voters’ prerogative / elected officials’ prerogative, with accountability flowing back to the voters, directly or indirectly. Which brings us back to the “small ‘d’ democratic values” that you claim to hold dear…except when it’s inconvenient, apparently.

            Meanwhile, you seem unable or unwilling to answer why a non-voting Associate Member who is a lifelong Democrat personally endorsing a longtime friend in a nonpartisan School Board election should result in her being removed from the HCDCC, while Ex-Officio members — who are actual voting members, and therefore have actual power on the committee — are free to endorse against the HCDCC endorsements anytime they want. How is that not elitist and un-(small ‘d’)democratic?

            Finally, it’s interesting how hung up you are by the terms “gag rule” and “purge.” I think your discomfort results from the fact that you do realize that, bottom line, this is exactly what the current policy amounts to. But if you’d rather use the term “remove” than “purge” you are free to do so, just as I am free to choose my own words (much to your chagrin, apparently). But I wonder what term you’d prefer instead of “gag rule?” “Loyalty oath?” “Cone of silence?”

  11. Mary Ella Anderson says:

    I come from a family of lifelong Democrats and was a Democrat until it became clear that the party wasn’t a big enough tent to include someone with a progressive point of view. The situation has only gotten worse and I believe in terms of the local Democratic political structure, many Republicans have latched on to a Democratic label because they couldn’t elected as a Republican. But the result is that the brand doesn’t really stand for anything anymore. Voting for a Democrat like Bass or Sundberg or Fennell or Bohn is the same as voting for a Republican. So I’m a Green and even though I do vote for some Democratic candidates, I support Green principles. And I agree that Union Democrats are living in the past and don’t realize how irrelevant their policies have made them. Here, as in the rest of the county, corporations control policies and they can afford to buy all the voters they need.

    1. Yes Ella! The only thing is, until we have a parliamentary system, or something that allows for third party’s sustainably, we are stuck with two parties. I’m with Bernie Sanders politically, but he just can’t do it on his own as an independent, there has to be political machinery. We see this happen over and over historically and a little success is ultimately doomed to failure for two reasons a) our system of checks and balances – which isn’t a bad thing. an executive that wins needs the support of a legislative and judicial branch which will have been already created by another party and b) any short term success is much, much more likely to have the exact opposite goal than what you voted for. It would be like if every time you reach for ice cream you had to get an electric shock. Eventually people learn you just can eat that particular ice cream.

      Greens and Democrats need to struggle not only for this year’s election, but we have to have a system that works sustainably. The sustainable living we promote has to begin with finding a sustainable democracy. How do we do that? Education, honesty, love, stubbornness, transparency, and a belief, but not a faith, that people if given the choice are good. The secret is, they are – especially when exposed to education, honesty, love, stubbornness, and transparency.

      With those foundations and an interest in now and the next 20 years politically at the local, state and federal level, we can work toward workable solutions.

      Case in point – health care. The ACA isn’t single payer, but it’s on the right track. We have amazing members of our HCDCC and more like them across the country working on the solutions. We need to elect leaders who are going to listen and continue to enact policies that will work for all of us.

      Also Ella, we can’t give up on unions generally. There are unions that see the big picture and unions that don’t. It’s a mixed bag, but in general, they are on our side. Not always and we can call them out on this or that issue (ie the GPU – I know you want that job to build that suburban house, but those jobs are available, maybe building a three to five story home in Eureka – as an example)

    2. Mary Ellen, i have voted green when no chance of the dem losing, just to make the point that many of us relate to their principles. I re-registered Dem to throw support to the only party that can avoid GOP comtrol ( of anything, ideally, the way they are acting these days). Anyway just wanted to let you know there is a Progressive Dem Club out of Dem HQ already here, and a Green Dem club may be in the works. FYI.

    1. Just like that, no can do huh. Wow. OK. Then lets continue to build low and spread out. That’s cheaper in the short term. What about the long term?

      Here is a somewhat related pie chart on CO2 emmissions by sector. I don’t think it’s a stretch to assume CO2 is proportional to energy which would be proportional to cost. Notice the huge transportation chunk. This is what regional planning seeks to shrink. And many people would prefer to live there. I don’t understand why building up is more expensive. The number of dwellings goes up, you are getting more living space buck for the property. There is no need for individual driveways and lawns. , aAre there links to demonstrate why this would be too expensive?

      And btw, I don’t have the skills or technical know how to be a planner. I’d like to empower the professionals we do have to make theses types of decisions based on a general plan based on some basic principles. Hire people to figure out how we can do this after giving them the mandate to do it.

      -or- we could let the private sector figure out the best way based on…what exactly? Nope can’t build that – too expensive, next…

  12. Anonymous says:

    I think you have to put an elevator in anything over 3 stories for apartments. You also have to deal with parking, limited infrastructure, solar shading, and where would you locate these 4 story buildings in eureka? You’re looking at multi million dollar projects and you can’t do them piecemeal, with a questionable market. If the public wanted buildings like this and were willing to pay, somebody would build it. The reason you haven’t seen this type of development in Humboldt isn’t some nefarious plot against good planning, it is because it isn’t currently feasible.

    1. “somebody would build it. ” But like you said “You also have to deal with parking, limited infrastructure, solar shading, and where would you locate these 4 story buildings in eureka? You’re looking at multi million dollar projects and you can’t do them piecemeal, with a questionable market.”

      Exactly, it would require “Planning”. The Chamber of Commerce can’t do this. “Somebody” can’t do this on her/his own.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Dan Johnson proved that affordable housing is profitable. He built about 30 units across the street from the Arcata Coop and stopped counting new applications after about 2 or 3 hundred.

    Arcata and its big box bans, industrial parks, affordable housing, business incubator, walkable streets and highest sales tax revenue per capita, is why Eureka needs real democrats in its elected and appointed offices instead of good old boy and girl hacks whose lap dog apologists can’t even tolerate one of their own being purged from a powerless and impotent political club in a nation of non-voters.

    Take note democrats, there’s 7,500 students in Arcata, most are on the liberal end of the spectrum. Yet, only 10% vote.

    Educate and register 10 % more voters in Eureka and this city and county will never be the same.

    1. I would like to see the finances on that. It’s a great looking, utilizarian example of exactly what government and business can do together. Are you against it in principle? Even if everyone won on the deal?

  14. Anonymous says:

    No, I’m not against it at all. I think it’s great, but these are not units that will be sold, they are rentals. The way you phrased your original comment was these units would be in lieu of a regular suburban house, “I know you want that job to build that suburban house, but those jobs are available, maybe building a three to five story home in Eureka. ” I stand by my statement that a 3 – 5 story building in Eureka that would take the place of regular “suburban” homes is neither practical nor financially feasible. The example of Plaza Point, a government subsidized housing project, is not the same thing.

    From their website: “Eligibility and maximum income restrictions apply. Rental Assistance may be available. Inquire with the
    manager as to income limits, current rental rates and information regarding the subsidy programs at this

    That’s why they filled up so fast, they are below market price. Kudos to Dan Johnson, he has done a number of these. It is a needed niche, but certainly not a replacement for traditional housing as you have asserted.

    1. We agree that it is a good thing. Can we agree that the demand is there and we should be working to replicate the model. Maybe professionals, and not just property owners and developers, but planners, economists, housing advocate specialists, developers and then the appropriate property owners can follow up? These are the types of examples of a project that can revitalize our downtowns in an authentic and utilitarian way that also have the added benefit that maybe they serve a population that needs help. Once we revitalize more we may start finding that there will be more interest in similar projects.

      It’s analogous to health care reform. What I’m advocating at this point is a market approach to land use planning. Right now I’d argue there is no choice for the infill that is needed. Not just building over the few remaining scraps of land in each density area with the same or similar sprawl pattern that one finds on the outskirts of “town” only slightly denser. But a “town center” approach, one much like Arcata’s with most everything one needs in walking distance. This would require some liberalization of land use designations or zoning – mixed use – not everyone is going to like that at first, people have gotten used to this idea of strict residential/business distinctions. I don’t know why we need these and we should start looking at ways at experimenting with alternatives.

      Or- we can continue to disempower the public and the Planning “and Building” Department in the name of creating a “Service” Department and government cutbacks.

      Or- we can realize as a community that a tiny bit of investment here and there and planning can have snowball effects for the better.

  15. Anonymous says:

    There are town centers designated. The county and state have made it nearly impossible to do a project like that without subsidies. The zoning is there. What do you mean when you say there is no choice? Mixed use is not a new idea.

    1. I don’t see it happening in appreciable numbers. We used to have it. But we’ve moved away. I’m thinking, just as a local example, Pat’s Market. from ye olden days. The “Plaza Point” if that’s what the building across from the Coop is called is another example of residences in a business district. I’d be for blurring the lines between residential and business.

      You are right, it’s not a new idea, it’s like 10,000 years old. I think we’ve moved away from it at our societies long-term loss.

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