An Open Letter to Mr. Chiv on Eureka’s Fourth Ward Race


John Chiv from his website

You and I often disagree on policy, and this informs our individual politics and political agendas.  Yes, we both have political agendas – all of us should.

As you know I disagree with the widely held notion that we are best lead as a City or County by a general consensus in politics. Sometimes polarization or strongly held opposing views are important and necessary.  Politics exists to help us come to better  decisions given the extraordinary diversity in our individual experiences, education, worldview, occupation, family or financial status, religion, heritage, etc.  We all will have different perspectives on what we as individuals would like to see in a future Eureka and a sometimes bumpy political process can help us to get better, more informed, decisions.

What needs work in our local community where we all will run into one another and depend on one another, is not necessarily a quieter or more subdued decision making process; people should be passionate about politics and expressions of outrage or celebration are important.  What needs work, imho, is how we talk about one another – we should strive to be civil in our disagreements.

John, you crossed a line in your reporting on why Allen McCloskey stepped down.  When I dropped out of the race for the Second Ward, I began to attend meetings of the North Coast People’s Alliance.  This is the amazing group of largely new voices to the local political scene that stemmed directly from Bernie Sanders’ candidacy.  I met Mr McCloskey at one of these meetings and thus was in the loop of those involved in finding Allen’s replacement for candidacy in the Fourth Ward – Austin Allison.

I personally have zero doubt about the reasons for Mr. McCloskey’s decision to withdraw from the race.  You have questioned the reasons for this switch.  As an outsider, I might be doing the same.

However, one of the results of your reporting was the punditry at The Humboldt Consequential (THC) run by an anonymous person unaccountable for amplifying your accusatory questions.  This is what they wrote

“Not to be outdone in the “shady politics” department, would-be challenger Allen McCloskey drops out of the 4th Ward race only to be replaced immediately after by his hospital lackey, Austin Allison.

Humboldt County politics, right? Got to love them.”


“As a side-note, we’ve also heard from a few different corners that the health problems that forced Allen McCloskey out of the race aren’t really problems with mental and/or physical health, and we’re admittedly stumped as to what those problems are.”

As a bureaucrat in the administration of health care, privacy of health issues is top of mind every minute of every day.  I believe it is imperative that we respect these rights.  If this is all Mr McCloskey wants to share with his community,  I hope we could all understand this and not see some imagined dark cloud of liberal or progressive agenda in an individual’s fight for health.

It’s election time John and may the persons and ballot measures that will be best for our common future pass this November.  However, what happens along the way matters too, and I would hope for a re-framing of the questions you asked before people start to vote.

John, please come to some resolution to your lingering questions soon.  The rallying support for last-minute candidate Austin Allison who stepped up to take on this very difficult challenge (on which you reported) was an incredible story for Mr. McCloskey, his family, friends and supporters under difficult circumstances. Please don’t make it something it isn’t.

This is what you wrote on August 17th and and a version was repeated via THC on Sept. 1st.

So, Allen McCloskey dropped out of the Ward 4 race, was his only reason as stated in Lost Coast Outpost?

– John Chiv

With respect to Mr. McCloskey and his privacy I will simply re-print what he told Ryan Burns of the Lost Coast Outpost: “McCloskey declined to specify the nature of his health issues but said he will be making regular trips to Stanford”.

I will say this John, the brief conversation I had with Mr. McCloskey on that day whenmany rallied around Candidate Allison was not one with someone putting on airs about health issues for some nefarious secondary reason.  This person was sincere and resolute and helped find a person to take up the political challenge he himself had to (hopefully) delay.

I wish Allen well in this much more important personal challenge and I know you will too when you are able to either get proof of the question above or learn to trust someone with whom you disagree, especially when there are zero repercussions for our community.

John, I appreciate and respect that you will disagree on much of what Mr. McCloskey (or I) have to say about the issues of our day, but make this stuff about policy.  Let’s try to stay away from insinuations, especially when people may need our prayers or well wishes rather than our accusations.  If you agree that we need as a community to be cognizant of our public civic discourse, public answers to your question or its retraction matter now, not after the absentee ballots are received by voters and definitely not after November 8th.

Thank you for your consideration,

Jon Yalcinkaya.




14 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Mr. Chiv on Eureka’s Fourth Ward Race

    1. John Chiv says:

      Oh look, the usual Chiv haters out in force. Julie Timmons who hates me just because I am Republican. Doesn’t really know me but that’s reason enough.

      MOLA welcome back, the left’s prime blog defender.

      Carol Conners, who approves of outing anyone Republican that is gay and transgender when there are no facts to counter truth. Very liberal and accepting of you, Carol.

      Jon, I dont owe you any answers. Talking to you is a waste of time, you dont listen. You ask questions instead of answering.

      Carol, I don’t to I need to print any retractions on facts. Your insult shows your desperation and lack of character.

      Four of you do nothing but blabber on blogs, you are hateful and attack me and others because you are prejudiced yourselves.

      Except for the last commenter,Julie, Jon and Carol are perfect examples of the hate on the left, MOLA, at least, is consistent and actually wants to see a change for the community, despite MOLA’s broad stroke of painting everyone rich in one stereotype.

      Jon, you dropped out, you left the HCDCC, you like to debate but no one cares what you and your three readers think. All you do is criticize others. When you actually have the guts to make a change in this community and take acton to improve this community, instead of just pontificating on blogs, maybe you will gain some credibilty.

      1. MOLA42 says:

        Mr. Chiv:

        I have always been here…Silently waiting in the dark, watching, observing everything…

        Creeped out yet?

        I have nothing against rich people. I would like to become one myself. I have a great deal against anyone who puts personal interests ahead of Community. Guess where those folks like to hang out.

      2. Obviously, John we disagree on your question John. I’ve fought for you in the past and will continue in the future because I believe in fairness, integrity, honor, etc. over partisanship when called for.

        By asking a spurious politically motivated question when you (and I) would like to count you as a local reporter I believe you have made a huge ethical mistake beyond what I would hope would be our common community standards.

        I do hope you take me up on my offer to reconsider asking the question, you have made clear why you won’t.

        Here is my truth John, I hope you take this into account when reporting on this issue. When I called Allen that day as the word was getting out that he would chose to focus on a serious health issue, I can tell you that this was not a someone who was lying. That was my experience and I have not spoken to Mr. McCloskey since.

        And I wrote this post with conviction because I KNOW from that conversation that what we briefly spoke about was real. Some day you will find out the same and might be mildly embarrassed you had ever asked the question.

        I just wanted to point out to you that it does matter a great deal WHEN you let the rest of the community know or chose to retract the question out of respect for another human being, especially if there is even a hint he might appreciate some prayers or well wishes.

        Remembering always that you were the one who put this man in the position of having to prove to you his health condition as if he is one of the defendants accused of crimes that you report on daily.

        He doesn’t have to report to you or us and there should not be any insinuation of malfeasance if he doesn’t chose to fill you in on his personal challenges.

  1. John Chiv says:


    You print a lot of selective quotes and text. You are free to think whatever you want. You call it crossing the line, most people see it raising valid questions about a candidate who made no effort to clarify concerns and issues that deserved public attention.

    If you want to talk about crossing the line, why don’t you call out other media that routinely print unsubstantiated BS about other candidates. As long as it is someone you don’t like or it’s the “right’, it’s okay.

    There are unanswered questions that Mr. McCloskey never responded to about where he actually lives, among other concerns. He was at Austin’s signature gathering and last weekend at Arts Alive.

    I have received more than one phone call about further researching Mr. McCloskey. This from liberals, respected in the community.

    I was not going to follow up on that but maybe I will now.

    The left needs to do a better job of vetting their candidates. Just putting someone up to run because you don’t like someone else is not a good reason.

    Jon, you had your chance, you dropped out. You gave no reason.

    What was the purpose of this post on your blog? You know how to contact me. You have talked privately to me before.

    Try posting something for once on your blog that is not cut and paste and using headlines to call out me or anyone else because you need material to post.

    1. 1)”You print a lot of selective quotes and text.”

      There is only one from you John. “So, Allen McCloskey dropped out of the Ward 4 race, was his only reason as stated in Lost Coast Outpost?”


      2)”If you want to talk about crossing the line, why don’t you call out other media that routinely print unsubstantiated BS about other candidates. As long as it is someone you don’t like or it’s the “right’, it’s okay.”

      Point them out John when they come up like I did here and I will talk to you about them. We need specifics and we should judge and be judged on specifics.


      3) “I was not going to follow up on that but maybe I will now.”

      Exactly! You need to either follow up OR as I wrote above “learn to trust someone with whom you disagree”. You need to do this soon if you are going to pose a offensive politically biased question about someone’s health during election season. What if it turns out the former candidate was sick and you find out after the election? Would these type of insulations have been fair? Would you be OK if the roles were reversed? What if God forbid Supervisor Fennell became sick during her campaign and not during her current term and someone was questioning her about her sincerity. (btw, she has recovered we all celebrate her recovery) Would you have been OK with people questioning her illness? Should our standard as a local community be that we want the medical records of our candidates?

      And btw, “following up” doesn’t mean badgering someone until you get the information you want. Everyone should have the right to live portions of their life privately if they desire. If answers you seek are not given to you it should not be insinuated that the lack of answer proves whatever it is you are trying to prove by asking a question that didn’t need to be asked in the first place.


      4)”Jon, you had your chance, you dropped out. You gave no reason.”

      I wrote…

      “I suspended what in the end was little more than an intention to run for the 2nd Ward. There are three main reasons for this…

      a) I am not ready to be a public official. I need to know more, I need to be more connected to our community and I have work to do in my life.

      b) My current impetus for running is based largely on the negative reaction to the vision Matthew Owen has for Eureka. I was not able to articulate positive reasons for voters to vote for me that don’t involve eyes glazing over or napping. (yes the latter happened)

      c) I need to understand how to overcome a deep personal aversion to self-promotion.”‘

      What else want to know?


      5) “Try posting something for once on your blog that is not cut and paste and using headlines to call out me or anyone else because you need material to post.”

      Word count shows 88% of the above post I wrote myself – the other 12% was directly what I was writing about and was sources and linked. Does that count as one post which is not “cut and paste” or do our definitions of “cut and paste” differ?

      Also, it’s not about material to post about – I would hope this would be obvious – it’s about time and energy to write cohesive, thoughtful ideas about the tens or hundreds of local stories that deserve public debate.


      John, I believe there is a dearth of honest public conversations in our community, there is plenty of private conversations to go around. I think we need more honest, accountable public conversations as I am sure you do too. We need civil, public discourse especially in small communities like ours because if this doesn’t exist, then the “in” crowd with their “in” ideas will be the ones to make decisions that should include input from all of us who care.

    2. MOLA42 says:

      Mr. Chiv:

      “The left needs to do a better job of vetting their candidates.” (I admit, Mr. Chiv, I just cut and pasted this bit)

      We (the left) don’t have a hideout where we can secretly meet and test (or “vet”) the electability and purity of our candidates. Interestingly, the right does, the Ingomar Club. Being the inclusive dolts we are, we just see who wants the job and then decide who to vote for; not wait for our masters in the Carson Mansion to make the decision for us.

      I think LJ covers the rest of what you have to say.

      1. But it’s a great comment Carol Ann. It’s what I would have liked to have as my campaign slogan if I could have run with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Make Eureka Great Again! It refers to a certain national candidate who shall remain nameless.

  2. Mary Ella Anderson says:

    The partisanship of various blogs combined with their negative and accusatory tone are designed to make involvement in civic life through voting and interest in government seem sleazy and pointless. The goal is to discourage people from participating in their own governance and leave the decisions up to the business community. Pleasing the business community is how most publications and blogs stay in business. Look around you and you will see that lack of participation in politics and government has not improved the situation of average citizens and has converted independent media into just another advertising medium. Things aren’t getting better; they’re getting worse. Imputing sleazy motives to anyone who opposes change smacks of projecting your own motives on others. Far from promoting civil dialogue and discussion of issues, the internet has destroyed actual social interaction and civic participation.

    So there, snooty face!

  3. C.A.C. says:

    Mr. Chiv, I do not care anything about your personal life. My issue with you is in regards to your inability to post retractions on your blog. In the past I wrote comments under my own name and you refused to post them. When I wrote you a personal email on the subject you were dismissive. I no longer read your blog for these two reasons, hence my comment.
    Have a good day.

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