Wednesday September 18, 2019

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Tonight –  Meet our new Superintendent James Berardi Wednesday night September 18th during Downieville Back to School night. Dinner at 5pm at the Cafeteria.

Save the Date– The Downieville Tennis and Education Association (DTEA) is proud to announce the naming of Downieville’s tennis court in honor of founder, Mary P. Johnsen. Please join us in honoring Mary at the dedication ceremony Saturday, September 28th  at 11am at the tennis court 736 Main St.,  Downieville. Mary will be joining us and there will food, drink, games, competition, raffle and prizes.

Do this – Tue, Sep 24 Immunization Clinic – Loyalton Thu, Sep 26 Immunization Clinic – Downieville  Tue, Oct 1 Immunization Clinic – Loyalton Fri, Oct 4 Walk-In Clinic Flu Shot – Pike Fri, Oct 4 Walk-In Clinic Flu Shot – Alleghany

Loyalton Country Market Bazaar Meet & Greet to be held September 28th 2019 usual time at the kiosk Loyalton. Bring your goodies to sell. The last Country Market for the year is our Pumpkin Festival to be held October 26th 2019 at the kiosk Loyalton.

Local news, events, things to do along with Board of Supervisors, Sheriff’s Log, FireHouse News are here, mixed in with local political issues. Columnist Mel Gurtov has two short pieces this week very worth reading… thinking and doing…the Oil and/or War issue once again raises it’s ugly never quite gone head and then the exit of John Bolton makes us wonder which will it be blind loyalty or a little restraint on the tRump. David Leonhardt roots for the Workers. Robert Koehler discusses heartless authority which fits into  another new columnist,  Volker Franke discussing the slippery slope out of compassion by the current administration affecting America’s greatness. Lots of thought material.

Occasionally I’ve been asked why I have columnists who  are not necessarily local. Well, because we are part of the planet and the butterflies travel far… but mostly because we have limited options here to get outside “accidental information”. We no longer have any daily newspaper delivery option. We use to be able to have the Sacramento Bee or Grass Valley Union delivered to our door, magazines were sold in the grocery stores… we’re stuck with the weekly local Mountain Messenger, bimonthly Sierra Booster and online Sierra County Prospect and Yubanet.com…. well anything online… so I just like to bring some new voices into the fray. Then I hear…. but you’re just putting up what You are interested in… yes that’s probably true all though I do try to publish fairly… and of course anything you are reading in print, online, the television, the radio… everything is someone’s opinion…. what appears on the front page of the Messenger is what The Don (Russell) deems worthy, same with Jan Buck and the Sierra Booster… if you’re reading us you’re reading what we found worthy… so my advice is to read as much as you can get your hands, eyes and brain on and somewhere in there you may ferret out some reality about what’s happening in the world and how and what we can do to help us to continue to be the shining light of compassion and freedom.

The spectacular photo this week was taken by Lee Kirby at Fournier Ranch after the storm.

Henry & Spike 9/18/19

Featured

It’s cold you know.. you could turn on the furnace you know… you’ve been here for ten years and you still don’t know how to start the fireplace… we’re fine worry about yourself… Maybe you should grow some fur…

District One Supervisor 9/18/19

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Dear District One Citizens:

I have represented you for a decade on the Sierra County Board of Supervisors and last week filed to be considered for a 4th term in the 2020  election.  I appreciate the trust you have given me over this past decade, as well as the trust you showed me in the 18 years I served as Sheriff.

I appreciate the opportunity to work with all citizens of the county in order to arrive at the best decisions for our district,  and county-wide. 

Toward that end, the following is a list of my past and/or present board involvement:

  • Finance committee Chair, 2011-present
  • Finance committee Member, 2009-2010

Sierra County continues to operate in a financially prudent manner, greatly supported by a team of department managers working responsibility with the Board of Supervisors. 

  • Sierra County delegate to 35 county Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC), 2009 to present
  • RCRC Board Chair, 2015
  • RCRC delegate to the 15 state Western Interstate Region board of the National Association of Counties 
  • Sierra County delegate to 58 county California State Association of Counties (CSAC), 2009 to present
  • CSAC executive committee, 2016-2018

Efforts include the continuation of the federal Secure Rural Schools program supporting both local schools and roads, improved federal fire fighting funding, and reauthorization of the state PILT funding to county government.  Most recently I was appointed to a 9 member RCRC committee to attempt to find realistic alternatives to the fire insurance dilemma many of us face.  

  • Sierra County delegate to Nor-Cal Emergency Medical Services Agency (NorCal EMS), 2011 to present
  • Member of the Sierra County Resource Allocation Committee with US Forest Service, 2015 to present

Within the community, I have been involved with the following:

  • Downieville Lions, member
  • Sierra County Historical Society life member, and past board member
  • Downieville Museum, Docent and Treasurer
  • Downieville Parlor No. 92, Native Sons of the Golden West, member & Treasurer
  • Forest City Historical Association, founding board member
  • Sierra County Arts Council, past board member
  • Downieville Historic Bridge Nomination, author
  • Sierra County Sesquicentennial Celebration, Co-chair
  • Sierra County Sheriff’s Gallows restoration, project director
  • Sierra County Historic Cemetery Survey, author 
  • Downieville Ambulance, past volunteer EMT
  • Sierra County Emergency Medical Care Committee, past member

I am honored and humbled to represent you in the Sierra County community, our courthouse, the state capital, and  occasionally the nation’s capital to provide for public policy that best represents Sierra County and all rural priorities.  Please feel free to contact me on any issue at (530)289-3506 or at hangman@sierracounty.ca.gov.

Most sincerely, 

LEE ADAMS , Downieville

Marty Comes Home 9/18/19

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Marty & Jackie Creel and Shaun Price at their Downieville Lion’s Club installation as members in October 2018.

Downieville Fire Protection District is pleased to announce the rehiring of Paramedic Marty Creel as our Downieville Ambulance Paramedic. Marty found his new position in Sacramento  was not as fulfilling as his role with our Downieville Ambulance.  

Marty states “I worked as a paramedic in Downieville just a couple of weeks shy of one year, before leaving for other employment. Jackie and I made several friends and found we missed the camaraderie of our fire and EMS friends. I enjoyed serving western Sierra County and the quality of life living in Downieville offers and we wanted to return to the area. 

“When I saw  the Paramedic position was open, it was an easy decision to reapply for the position. When the position was offered again, I accepted and am looking forward to being a part of the Downieville Ambulance skilled and compassionate team of responders.”

SFMR and DFPD welcome Marty and his wife Jackie along with pooches  Mini Mouse and Arya back to our community and look forward to the continued enhancement of our emergency medical service.

Marty will return to his Paramedic Position on October 1st, 2019.

Oktoberfest Vendors 9/18/19

The 20th Annual Oktoberfest is scheduled for Saturday, October 12, 2019 on Main Street in Sierra City.  The event will be held from 10 a.m. To 4 p.m. and will feature vendors, music, food and a raffle.

This is an invitation to invite you to be vendor at the Oktoberfest event.  Set up would start at 8 a.m. On Saturday, October 12, 2019 with the event starting at 10 a.m.  The cost of a Vendor space will be $25.00.

If you would like to participate please  indicate by filling out the information below.  You can send that part of the letter, filled out along with you check made payable to the Downieville Lions Club in the amount of $25.00 to  P. O. Box 24, Downieville, CA 95936.

If you should have any further questions please feel free to contact Suzanne Smith either by phone (530)289-3213 or email zanney4961@yahoo.com.

We look forward to working with you at this fun and entertaining event.

Very truly yours,  The Downieville Lions Club

I would like to be a vendor at the Oktoberfest in Sierra City on Saturday, October 12, 2019

Name________________________________________________________________________

Address______________________________________________________________________

Phone & Email_________________________________________________________________________

Special Requests_____________________________________________________________________

Mountain Messenger (Wait) 9/18/19

Mountain Messenger, I can’t wait to hear what they have to say about the Super meeting…that is one of my favorite things to do…read the Mess on Thursday, to see what Ileft out on Wednesday… no I’m not whining about them having more news than me… no not at all… they deserve every word they get… I mean they have to go to meetings and stuff they can’t just listen to a recording and tell you to listen… I know you know who “they” is….well actually it could be The Don or Miss Jill or Milly or Carl or somebody I know nothing about.. there was a strange voice at the Board, it wasn’t Peneople or Scott or Brutus… anyhow just wait till tomorrow and we will both know…

The Don Russell thinking about his friend Larry Allen who left Don for the joys of retirement…

Send anything you need published to Miss Jill, ROTP (not Milly) at yesdearyousuck@yahoo.com or call directly to 530 289-3262 and talk to The Don. For a subscription: send money to Mountain Messenger at P.O. Drawer A, Downieville 95936 or call 530 289-3262 with credit card in hand.. Write to The Don Russell at mtnmess@cwo.com and tell him you subscribed because the sierracountyprospect.org begged you to….. Subscriptions cost –In Sierra County $30 1yr- $50 2yrs / Out of county $35 1 yr – $60 2yrs

Slippery Slope 9/18/19

Me first and the loss of compassion  by Volker Franke

Volker Franke

America stands at a crossroads today. Terrorism and nuclear proliferation, immigration, climate change or the growing gap between rich and poor reveal policy priorities that increasingly segregate society. Americans have been taking their divisions to the streets. Voicing opinion as part of the political process or outside of it are signs of a healthy democracy. However, more and more, political parties and interest groups promote their goals with the sole purpose of winning without any real interest in compromise, let alone collaboration. As we are losing interest in and eventually the ability to compromise, we are losing the very essence of our democracy.

Blaming the president or illegal immigrants is far too easy. The reasons for the renewed and increasing divisions of American society are rooted much deeper than political slogans or religious or moral prescriptions. Instead, many of the tensions that shape American society today likely stem from a combination of long-held myths about American exceptionalism and the rise of individualism at the expense of community.

We tell our children early on that they can be anything they want to be. We aim for them to be special and we prove it with our bumper stickers. We hire tutors so they can be first among the best. This is all good, of course, if that drive comes from the child, but not so much when it is the parent pushing an unhappy child.

If that is our approach, instead of providing opportunity for creative free play with others, we already force our preschoolers to sit still for hours, so they can be ahead of everybody else even before they enter first grade.

Sliding further down the slippery slope toward elitism, we’ve been bribing coaches so our children receive athletic scholarships for sports they don’t even play.

As a college instructor, I see the results in my classrooms. Many students do not know what they want to do after graduation and some don’t even know why they are in college. Many are disconnected, frustrated, alienated. Many have a closer relationship with their smart device than they do with their classmates. All know, however, they have to get good grades to succeed. As a result, many take “easy” classes to boost their GPA. One of the most frequent questions students ask me is what will be on the exam and whether there is a study guide.

But, in college, shouldn’t classes be challenging, preparing graduates for success in life without a study sheet? Should we not empower our students to think creatively, critically, compassionately and for themselves?

The way we have been socializing our children for decades, trying to make them better, smarter, faster than others they compete against has resulted in a “me first” attitude that has lost consideration and compassion for others.

One of the crucial lessons we often fail to impart to our children is that life is not a zero-sum game; that is, the success of another child is not a corresponding failure for me. Children ought to learn how to help one another so they can take joy in crossing the finish line together, building closeness instead of separation, segregation and adversarialism.

 And the incessant use of digital media often exacerbates this development.

In a society where we are rewarded for thinking about ourselves first, we disconnect from one another. Just go to the mall and look for shopping carts and trash strewn across the parking lot, oversized trucks and SUVs parked across multiple parking spots, non-handicap vehicles in handicap spots and cars parked in dedicated motorcycle spaces. No consideration for others.

Gone are the days of compassionate conservatism. “America first” finds a ready breeding ground in this “me first” mentality. It is finally time to catch up for those left behind by social progress made in the name of equality. After all, they too are better than others, better than those abroad and better than those from abroad. The new aMEricaFIRST echoes that sentiment, segregates American society and separates us from friends and allies around the world.

How can we get our compassion back? How can we reconnect with each other and engage with the world? At the personal level, take small steps and start a conversation with someone different from you, expose yourself to the diversity that makes this country so unique–and involve your children in that exposure to pluralism, normalizing it, modeling it. Put yourself in the shoes of someone less fortunate and find the “things that unite.”

At the social level, we – including our children – must recognize that the rights and freedoms we cherish and enjoy also come with responsibilities. Success in America has focused on maximizing individual freedoms limited only when their exercise encroaches on the freedoms of others. Today, we need to reconnect and rebuild our communities by focusing on the needs of others. To achieve this, let’s reconsider the idea of mandatory public service: citizens serving others in need. A public service requirement between the end of high school and the beginning of college – fulfilled in many ways, including such service opportunities as AmeriCorps, the Peace Corps, Meals on Wheels or other freely helpful initiatives – brings those in service in contact with those from whom they have been disconnected, both at home and abroad. Only through connection will we regain compassion and only then will we be able to make America great again.

Dr. Volker Franke is a Professor of Conflict Management at Kennesaw State University and the Founder and CEO of TRENDS Global, a metro-Atlanta based non-profit organization dedicated to community empowerment and public service.

Board of Supervisors 9/18/19

COUNTY OF SIERRA BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
AGENDA REGULAR MEETING

As always I recommend listening to the recording of the Supervisors meeting you actually get to understand and recognize the personalities both Board Members and Staff… you get a more complete understanding of our local government and governmental process in general… you might email the Chair and ask him/her to request everyone identify themselves by name into the microphone because although those in the room know who’s talking and get the context the purpose of the recording fails when it isn’t clear who is making the report…. Please Mr/Ms Chair extend this courtesy to your constituents.

The Sierra County Board of Supervisors met in regular session on September 17, 2019 at the Loyalton Social Hall. This meeting was recorded for posting on the Board of Supervisors’ website at www.sierracounty.ca.gov.

The Clerk of the Board may be reached at 530-289-3295 or at the following address: Heather Foster clerk-recorder@sierracounty.ca.gov

The Board of Supervisors may hold a Closed Session as the agenda schedule permits.

REGULAR AGENDA

1. 9:00A.M.

STANDING ORDERS

  • Call to Order – Chair Roen
  • Pledge of Allegiance- by Press
  • Roll Call –
  • Approval of Consent Agenda, Regular Agenda and Correspondence to be addressed by the Board – Approved
2.PUBLIC COMMENT OPPORTUNITY – none
3.COMMITTEE REPORTS & ANNOUNCEMENTS –
4.DEPARTMENT MANAGERS’ REPORTS & ANNOUNCEMENTS – New 
5.FOREST SERVICE UPDATE
6.PROBATION – JEFF BOSWORTH
6.A.

Discussion on pending probation policy regarding concealed weapons permit for retired probation officers pursuant to Penal Code 25455.

Documents: Board Packet.pdf

7. PUBLIC WORKS/TRANSPORTATION – TIM BEALS
7.A.

Discussion and approval of final “fire protection services agreement” between Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District, Sierra County Fire Protection District #1, and Sierra County for services at Verdi and Long Valley and authorization to secure the signature of SCFPD#1 and then forward on to Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District for final approval.

7.B.

Resolution authorizing the submittal of a project funding application to the Sierra Nevada Conservancy for a forest health-community fire resiliency project at Sierra Brooks to apply to Smithneck Creek Wildlife Management Area/US Forest Service system lands-Sierraville Ranger District-Sierra Valley Resource Conservation District and Sierra County as co-applicants.

Documents: SNC Smithneck Creek Project.pdf

7.C. Resolution authorizing the submittal of a project funding application to the Sierra Nevada Conservancy for a forest health-community fire resiliency project at Greene Acres to apply to US Forest Service system lands-Yuba River Ranger District-County of Sierra as applicant.

7.D. Approval of letter to the California Insurance Commissioner directed by the Board on September 3, 2019 regarding the serious issues facing County residents in obtaining fire and homeowners insurance.
7.E. Approval of letter to the CPUC directed by Board on September 3, 2019 regarding the 2-1-1- system.
7.F. Approval to purchase and install fencing at the Loyalton Landfill in the amount of $26,467.35.
7.G. Discussion of status of fire mitigation fee in place within the Sierra County Fire Protection District and direction to staff (County Counsel and Planning Director) to conform the existing ordinance with the expanded boundaries of the fire protection district.
7.H. Discussion, direction and approval of the final draft master stewardship agreement with USDA-Forest Service and the County of Sierra and authorization to submit the final agreement to the Regional Forester.
7.I. Discussion, review and direction on adoption of any comments on the Plumas National Forest Over‐Snow Vehicle (OSV Use Designation) Final Environmental Impact Statement.

Documents: PNF OSV.Item.pdf

7.J. Resolution approving right-of-way agreement for 49er Drive affecting ownership of property owned by Elise Ostrom of Sierra City and direction to the County Clerk-Recorder to record the agreement.
7.K. Introduction and first reading of proposed ordinance amending the Sierra Brooks Water System regulations currently in place to conform County regulations to the requirements of the new Sierra Brooks Water System Project.
8.

BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

8.A. Acceptance by the County of Sierra from the estate of Patricia Erlandsen of nine original oil paintings of nine historic venues in Sierra County painted by Mrs. Erlandsen over approximately the past 30 years. (SUPERVISOR ADAMS)

Documents Donated Paintings.pdf

8.B. Pulled from 13.a. Correspondence for discussion

9.

COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS AND COUNTY SERVICE AREAS JOINT MEETING

Board of Supervisors to convene as the County Service Area (CSA) Board of Directors and to hold joint meetings as both the County Board of Supervisors and the CSA Board of Directors.
9.A.Minutes from the County Service Area Board of Directors meeting held on July 23, 2019. (CLERK OF THE BOARD)
9.B.Minutes from the County Service Area Board of Directors meeting held on August 6, 2019. (CLERK OF THE BOARD)
9.C.Resolution adopting Appropriation Limits for the 2019-2020 Fiscal Year for Sierra County Service Areas 2, 3 and 5A (Sierra Brooks Water).
9.D.Resolution adopting Appropriation Limits for the 2019-2020 Fiscal Year for the County of Sierra.
9.E.Resolution adopting the the 2019-2020 Final Budget for Sierra County Service Areas 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 5A (Sierra Brooks Water).

Documents: CSAs Final Budget.pdf

9.F.Resolution adopting the 2019-2020 Final Budget for the County of Sierra.
10.CLOSED SESSION
10.A.

Closed session pursuant to Government Code Section 54956.9 (d)(2) – conference with legal counsel – anticipated litigation – 1 case.

Documents: Closed session.pdf
11.

TIMED ITEMS

11.A.  11:00AM

LOYALTON BIOMASS PLANT

Presentation and discussion with Kevin Lee and Jim Turner of American Renewable Power on the Loyalton biomass plant with a public question and answer period to follow the presentation.
12. CONSENT AGENDA
Items placed on the Consent Agenda are of a routine and non-controversial nature and are approved by a blanket roll call vote. At the time the Consent Agenda is considered, items may be deleted from the Consent Agenda by any Board member or Department Manager and added to the Regular Agenda directed by the Chairman.
12.A.Agreement for Indemnification and Reimbursement for Extraordinary Costs for Robert and Elaine Wilhelmy, landowners and Robert Wilhelmy, applicant for consideration of a parcel merger of two commonly owned and adjacent lots. The project site, identified as APN’s 016-150-052 and 016-150-053 are located at 52 Mustang Trail, Sierra Brooks. (PLANNING)
12.B.Approval of County Certification of Network Adequacy Data and Documentation Submission. (BEHAVIORAL HEALTH)

Documents: NACT Board.pdf

12.C.Authorize payment of Invoice Number 198133 to Intermountain Disposal for tipping fees for waste that has been diverted to Delleker Transfer Station. (PUBLIC WORKS)

Documents: IMD.Item.pdf

12.D.Contract between the County of Sierra and Corrections Software Solutions for Probation’s Case Management System. (PROBATION)
12.E.Local Enforcement Agency Grant Agreement EA30-19-0063, for the time period of July 1, 2019 through October 29, 2020, in the amount of $15,022.00. (PUBLIC HEALTH)

Documents: LEA Board.pdf

12.F.Professional Services Agreement between Oliver Ocskay, Ph.D. and Sierra County for behavioral health services. (BEHAVIORAL HEALTH)

Documents: Ocskay Board.pdf

12.G.Certified statement of the results of the canvass for the August 27, 2019 Assembly District 1 Special Primary Election. (ELECTIONS)
12.H.Minutes from the regular meeting held on August 6, 2019. (CLERK-RECORDER)

Documents: 08062019 minutes.pdf

12.I.Minutes from the regular meeting held on September 3, 2019. (CLERK-RECORDER)

Documents: 09032019 minutes.pdf

13.CORRESPONDENCE LOG
13.A.

Letter from Chris Carlton, Plumas National Forest Supervisor regarding determination of eligibility for the Hays/Taws cabin, Plumas National Forest, Sierra County, California.

Documents: Hays Taws cabin.pdf

ADJOURN

Sensible Letter 9/18/19

This letter was in response to Item 7E on the 10/17 Agenda

 SIERRA COUNTY – Board of Supervisors  Telephone (530) 289-3295

17 September 2019

Mr. Eric Van Wanbeke, Program & Project Supervisor California Public Utilities Commission 505 Van Ness Avenue San Francisco, CA 94102-3298

Subject: Implementation of SB 1212

Funding and Disaster 2-1-1 Services Dear Mr. Van Wanbeke:

This letter is provided to respond to your letter of July 19, 2019 on the subject of SB 1212 funding and the deployment of 2-1-1 disaster services. The Sierra County Board of Supervisors has evaluated the need for and likelihood of a successful program should the 2-1-1 system be implemented.

While we appreciate this opportunity to apply for funding, it appears that this is one of many State programs where a “one size fits all” program does not work.. The notifications suggested and outreach provided through the proposed 2-1-1 program, on most part, are already covered through other programs that the County OES functions have initiated or implemented. In a County of 3,000 people, having calls routed to Ventura County or Los Angeles County and standing the required implementation and maintenance costs accordingly seems quite impractical. In addition, we are now facing increasing power outages due to wildfire concerns and with extremely limited cell service within Sierra County (and most rural areas), and in particular large areas of the County where cell service is not available at all, and these power outages impact residential telephone services that are more and more internet based. Such outages leave many with no telephone service of any kind which affords severe limitations for the overall success of a 2-1-1 program.

We would encourage both the Legislature and the CPUC to consider more broad language in such funding mechanisms to allow more creative ways to provide alternative services in California’s more rural areas where current approved 2-1-1 options are shown to be unrealistic. Sierra County, like many rural Counties, could put funding that would otherwise be available to design and implement a 2-1-1 system to much better use providing programs and services that have a direct and immediate benefit to those in need of expanded OES services and other like programs or services. If any potential exists to divert these funds to other priority programs of a like nature, please contact us at your earliest convenience.

Sincerely, SIERRA COUNTY – BOARD OF SUPERVISORS                                            Paul Roen, Chairman of the Board

Accountable Actions 9/18/19

No war for Saudi oil! – by Mel Gurtov

Mel Gurtov

Even if US intelligence decisively shows that some of the drones and cruise missiles used in the attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil fields originated in Iran, a decision to go to war with Iran would be inexcusable and insupportable.

For one thing, such a decision would not serve US national interests; it would be based on Saudi oil supplies and oil prices—a war for oil, pure and simple.

Second, the attack would be a logical (some would say, predictable) retaliation for many months of US-supported Saudi air attacks on the Yemeni rebels that have caused tens of thousands of deaths, widespread malnutrition, and a health crisis—crimes against humanity according to many observers.

Third, the very idea that the US should go to war in support of a criminal Saudi regime is outrageous.  The government of Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman is responsible for the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the coddling of the 9/11 terrorists, and consistent violations of the human rights of Saudi women and political opponents.

Fourth, the full backdrop to this war threat must include Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal with Iran and the ensuing Bolton-Pompeo strategy of “maximum pressure” on Iran designed to provoke regime change.  Ever since, Iran’s leaders have been looking for ways to fight back against a US policy that has caused considerable economic damage, but without directly hitting US targets. Now, for the second time in a few months, Trump says “we” are “locked and loaded,” on the pretense of retaliation rather than as a follow-up to US economic warfare.  In a word, responsibility for this crisis rests most directly on the Trump administration’s rejection of diplomacy in favor of sanctions and threats.

The US has no obligation to go to war for the sake of Saudi oil or in defense of Saudi territory.  Nor is there a legal basis for doing so: Saudi Arabia is not an ally, and any decision for war, or other military action, requires Congressional approval.  If Trump decides on war, it will be to curry favor with his and Jared Kushner’s dear friend, the crown prince, and satisfy the warmongering Israeli leadership—all despite the Pentagon’s reported advice against war.  US military leaders well understandthe dimensions of disaster war with Iran would create.

Trump may well back away from his latest threat, as he often does, perhaps motivated this time by election concerns.  He must still be held to account, for his every action contributes to tension in the Middle East and does nothing to restrain Saudi Arabia in its Yemen war or provide incentives to Iran to negotiate.

Mel Gurtov, syndicated by PeaceVoice, is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Portland State University.

BIG CITY ROD RUN WINNERS 9/18/19

Sierra City Big City Rod Run Winners!

What a great car show it was once again in the mountains on main street in Sierra City, the weather was perfect and it’s so much better than a car show in a parking lot in the city. Save the date for the show next year on September 11-12, 2020.

Through all of the generous donations from local businesses and such, the Raffle, 50/50, Poker Walk, Booze wagon and Hot Dog Stand, we raised $1327.00 for our Sierra County Search and Rescue!

I suppose a lot of folks were itching to see my hair get cut off because we also raised $1,520 for our Sierra City fire department by lopping it off to the highest bidder. The highest bid came in at $300 but with the matching donations from the YUBA RIVER INN, BUTTES RESORT, BUCKHORN BAR & MTN CREEK RESTAURANT, RED MOOSE INN & CAFE, SIERRA COUNTRY STORE, SIERRA SKIES R.V. PARK, SIERRA PINES RESORT AND SORRACCOS SALOON. There were also several random cash donations and the hair will be donated to “wigs for kids” Thank you to all!

Here are the car show award winners:

BEST OF SHOW: 1957 GMC Pick-up Green/Black, Richard Manneville, Incline Village
US FOREST SERVICE: SMOKEYS AWARD: 1939 Ford Rat Rod, Vanetti, Chilcoot

BASSETTS STATION – BEST PAINT JOB: 1932 Ford, Bill Morris, Graeagle

BUCKHORN BAR/MTN CREEK – BUCKHORN BEAUTY: 1951 Ford F1, Micheal Griffin, Russel Valley

BUTTES RESORT – THAT’S A BUTTE: 1970 Chevy Chevelle, Mike Gyorfi, Wheatland

CHP – RED LIGHT RUNNER: Yellow/Blue Ford Track Roadster, Bob Whitaker, Riverside

COACHMEN CAR CLUB – GOOD FRIENDS / GREAT RIDES: 1933 Chevy Coupe, Goose, Sierra City

DOWNIEVILLE DAY SPA – ALL GLAMMED-UP!: 1957 Chevy 3100 Pick-up, Johnny & Sharon Miller, Placerville

DOWNIEVILLE GROCERY – GROCERY GETTER: 1955 Ford F100, Bruce Bailey, Colfax

DOWNIEVILLE LIONS CLUB – ROAR’S LIKE A “LION”: 1970 chevy chevelle SS, Rich & Russell Looney, Clio

FOREST & SHARON DRYDEN – DIRTY DEEDS: 1965 Buick Skylark, Tom McNeill, Sparks

HIGH COUNTRY INN – SHE CAN FLY: 1931 Ford Coupe A, Mike Sprock, Bellville, Texas

JAN KOETTEL REALTY – BEST NEIGHBORHOOD CRUISER: 1931 Ford Model A Rotoglo, Sib Fedora, Meridian, Ca

LACE HOUSE LINEN – MY MONEY LAUDERING REASON: 1962 Green Cadillac, Charles Mayo, Live Oak, Ca

LA COCINA DE ORO – NACHO MAMAS CAR: Green Ford Roadster, Iru Dickson, Folsom

MOUNTAIN MESSENGER – BAD NEWS: 1923 Ford Bucket T, Billy & Linda Seal, Covina, Ca

MY SISTERS COTTAGE – THIS ONES FOR THE GIRLS: 1956 Ford Fairlane, George Selko, Chico

OLD SIERRA CITY SCHOOLHOUSE – BEST AFTER SCHOOL CRUISER: 1971 Chevy Chevelle, Skip & Carolyn Evans, Reno

RED MOOSE INN & CAFE – BEST MOPAR: 1995 Jeep, Fire Chief’s Vehicle, Sierra City

RIVERSIDE INN – RIVER RUNNER: 1939 Chevy Sedan, Dave & Leslie Danna, Georgetown

SARDINE LAKE RESORT – A BIG FISH IN A LITTLE POND: Chevy C-10, Joe Sovea, Oroville

SIERRA BOOSTERS – HAL’S BLAST FROM THE PAST: 1970 Yellow Opal, Jerry Snow, Sacramento

SIERRA CITY FIRE DEPT – JUST A HUNK OF BURNIN’ LOVE: 1957 Green GMC Pick-up, Richard Mancleville, Incline Village

SIERRA CITY MERCANTILE – THE ARTIST CHOICE: 1969 VW Beetle, Marie Wikoff, Reno

SIERRA CITY UNITED METHODIST CHURCH – ONE RIGHTEOUS RIDE: 1956 Ford F100, Joe Simas, Colfax

SIERRA COUNTY ARTS COUNCIL – BEST ART CAR: 1958 Chevy Biscayne, Dan & Janet Weaver, Pilot Hill

SIERRA COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE – TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS: 1930 Silver Model A, Jim Bennett, Reno

SIERRA COUNTY LAND TRUST – A REAL TREASURE: 1940 Purple Ford Coupe, James Blake, New castle

SIERRA COUNTY SHERIFF – BEST GET AWAY CAR: 1938 Ford 2 door Sedan, Bob Siddial, Meadow Vista, Ca

SIERRA HARDWARE – LEAKY PIPES AWARD: 1954 Silver Chevy, Martin Fransler, Fort Jones, Ca

SIERRA SKIES R.V. PARK – BEST TRAILER QUEEN: 1969 Chevy Pick-up, Darrell Saiza, Nevada City

SIERRA PINES RESORT – PERFECT CATCH: 1947 Lincoln Continental, Bob Kay, Yankee Jims, Ca

SIERRA COUNTY PROSPECT – LEFT WING RAG: 1934 Ford Vicky, John Isgreen, Soda Springs

SNOWBUSTERS CLUB – PEDDLE TO THE METAL: 1948 English Ford Anglia, Brad Blake, El Doradoa

SORRACCOS SALOON – BEST TRUNK TO STUFF A BODY IN, 1950 Mercury Woody Wagon, Don & Pat Bugna, Sparks

ST CHARLES PLACE – LIQUOR IN THE FRONT: 1942 Ford Coupe, Paul & Kelly MacNeil, Auburn

TERRY THE TRASHMAN (TERRY LEBLANC) – A RECYCLABLE RELIC: 1931 Ford Model A Roadster, Steve Parks, Georgetown

THE SIERRA CHALET – BEST RIDE TO CRUISE TO YOUR VACATION: 1968 Chevy Camaro RS SS, Tom Coleman, Gridley

TOMS SNOWMOBILE – BEST SLED: 1939 Mercury Persimmon, Jimmy & Colette Stewart, Auburn

Grasp with Compassion 9/18/19

Altruists of the world unite!  by Robert C. Koehler

Robert Koehler

The biggest joke on the planet may be the phrase “national security.”

It almost always justifies something brutal, whether outright murder (a.k.a. war) or climate apartheid — the rejection and condemnation of refugees who are fleeing terrible conditions in their homeland, often created or intensified by climate change.

Thus Mark Morgan, acting director of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, addressing the extent to which the United States would open its arms to Bahamian refugees in the wake of Hurricane Dorian, discussed the necessity “to balance the humanitarian need and assistance of those that need it versus the safety of this country,” by which he meant . . .

Well, the president (of course!) made matters perfectly clear, unplugging all political correctness regarding refugees and U.S. security: “I don’t want to allow people that weren’t supposed to be in the Bahamas to come into the United States, including some very bad people and some very bad gang members and some very, very bad drug dealers.”

One result of the national reticence of Trump America to unconditionally welcome refugees from the Bahamas — where 185 mph winds pummeled the islands for several days, rendering 70,000 people homeless — was that 119 people were told to leave a ferry that was transporting refugees from Grand Bahama Island to Florida because they lacked visas to enter the U.S. A CBP spokesperson later denied the agency had anything to do with the incident, but the ferry company said it acted after it had been advised by CBP that refugees would be denied entrance without proper documentation.

Even if it was merely border confusion, rather than intentional cruelty, that resulted in the refugees’ forced exit from the ferry (and who knows what has happened to them since?), the bureaucratic pseudo-paranoia over the safety of American citizens — yours and mine! — that has supposedly reared its head regarding another possible “invasion” of desperate non-white refugees, is a lie so blatant it’s virtually invisible.

In point of fact, the government could care less about our safety in the course of actions it either pursues or avoids. Hence, while it’s quick to go to war (regardless of the consequences, both internationally and domestically), maintain a nuclear weapons stockpile and devote a trillion dollars to developing the next generation of nukes, it refuses to confront such issues as gun violence, medical debt, the right to clean water and, oh gosh, global warming . . . just to name a few. But it’s obsessive in its determination to keep bad non-Americans from slipping into our country and proceeding to harm an American citizen or (even worse) get on the welfare rolls.

Pretending to keep bad people — excuse me, I mean “very bad people” — out of America is a low-watt public relations ploy that feeds only one thing: us-vs. them thinking and fear of the enemy du jour, the subhuman “other.” Stirring up this fear among a segment of the population makes governing so much easier, creating an instant unity often referred to as patriotism.

But beyond the obvious racism of the Trump-era obsession over border “security,” there’s an even more blatant, unaddressed stupidity about this policy: There is no such thing as national security independent of global security.

Another term here is wholeness: All things — all people — are connected. Unfortunately, we have managed to divide the planet into a bunch of nation-states that, with a very few exceptions, maintain standing armies to protect themselves from other nation-states and view national sovereignty as their highest, and perhaps only, political value. This seems to leave the planet as a whole unable to unify around deep and serious issues such as climate change, which transcend national borders.

The intellectual defense of national sovereignty is that it’s a far better alternative than an autocratic, one-world government. Such a monstrous entity — Hitler writ large — is very easy to imagine, considering that governments on a smaller scale have authoritarian tendencies even if they purport to be democracies, and, of course, absolute power corrupts absolutely. No one wants to imagine a Putin or a Trump dictating directives to the planet at large. Nevertheless, leaving the planet in the hands of 190 or so potential autocrats or corporate errand boys is hardly a better alternative.

Those who are without power — the poor, the indigenous, the uprooted — are at the mercy of heartless authority, no matter that the authority has global limits. One recent such example: Jair Bolsonaro, president of Brazil, infamous for his willingness to turn the Amazon rainforest, ravaged by human-set fires, over to mining, farming and logging interests, told reporters the Amazon is “too much land for so few Indians.”

The planet is also at the mercy of the same authority, a phenomenon that journalist George Monbiot described with shocking precision during a recent TED Talk. Noting that “human beings have got this massive capacity for altruism” — indeed, that our remarkable ability to cooperate with one another is what has allowed us to survive as a species — he adds:

“Our good nature has been thwarted by several forces, but I think the most powerful of them is the dominant political narrative of our times, which tells us that we should live in extreme individualism and competition with each other. It pushes us to fight each other, to fear and mistrust each other. It atomizes society. It weakens the social bonds that make our lives worth living.

“And into that vacuum grow these violent, intolerant forces. We are a society of altruists, but we are governed by psychopaths.”

All of which brings me back to Trump America and helping the refugees of Hurricane Dorian vs. “keeping the country safe.” I am writing these words on the 18thanniversary of 9/11, which compels me to point something out to the president: We responded — the whole world responded — to that disaster with unadulterated compassion for the victims. No one worried, let us say, that maybe some delivery boy fleeing the tower and seeking our help had a criminal record . . .

If we want to survive, by which I mean transcend, the global crises we face today, we must grasp the planet, and each other, with compassion — the altruism in our DNA — rather than bureaucratic caution and cold concern for the ruling interests.

Robert Koehler(koehlercw@gmail.com), syndicated by PeaceVoice, is a Chicago award-winning journalist and editor. He is the author of Courage Grows Strong at the Wound.

Don’t Let the Door 9/18/19

Farewell, John Bolton    by Mel Gurtov

Mel Gurtov

The firing (or, he insists, the resignation) of John Bolton as national security special assistant is being treated by some observers as a great loss for coherence and professionalism in the conduct of US foreign policy.  Josh Rogin at the Washington Post, for example, writes on September 11: “Republicans on Capitol Hill lost a key interlocutor and a key ally inside the White House. Many fear Trump will replace Bolton with someone who will feed Trump’s own desire to drastically pull back on U.S. commitments and alliances abroad. Even Democrats acknowledge Bolton was somebody who they knew and trusted to — at the very least — push back against Trump’s worst instincts or false beliefs.”

In short, we are invited to treat Bolton’s departure as another in a long line of “adults in the room” who are gone, leaving Trump to make policy by gut instinct.  (“Trump unplugged,” as one former diplomatic put it.)  You would think we had lost a voice for peace, human rights, and international cooperation!  Let’s get real: Bolton’s departure is a welcome event.  His hawkish impulses, if allowed to proceed uncheck, quite possibly would have led to war with Iran, no talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan, continued “maximum pressure” on North Korea and Venezuela, and further sanctions against Cuba and Nicaragua.  Yes, Bolton was an “adult” when it came to sanctions on Russia, support for NATO, and Trump’s glad-handing of dictators.  But on balance, Bolton was as much a menace to real national and international security as his boss.

Various foreign-policy professionals are being quoted as concluding that with Bolton gone, Trump will have the field to himself, with only Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and friends to restrain him.  That is indeed worrisome, since Pompeo has been just as militant as Bolton on Venezuela, North Korea, and Iran.  The main difference between the two is Pompeo’s loyalty—his willingness to bite his tongue and go along with whatever Trump says or does.  US foreign policy will be no less incoherent and erratic in a Bolton-less world.  But at least with Bolton gone, we have one less voice for war in Washington.

Mel Gurtov, syndicated by PeaceVoice, is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Portland State University.

CalTrans Power Plans 9/18/19

Caltrans Plans for Power Outages Over Wildfire Concerns                                   Motorists Should Treat Non-Working Signals as All-Way Stops

DISTRICT 3 — Caltrans is preparing for widespread power outages this summer and fall if PG&E cuts power during high-wind and red flag warning periods to reduce the risk of wildfire.

Motorists are reminded that the California Department of Motor Vehicle Driver Handbook mandates that non-working (dark) and flashing red traffic signals be treated as all-way stops during power outages. Drivers should proceed with caution through intersections and observe right-of-way rules.

“District 3 is home to many beautiful, natural resources and scenic views, although they can be fire risks,” said Caltrans District 3 Amarjeet S. Benipal. “We appreciate wildfire reduction efforts that help keep our communities and our state highways safe for everyone.”

Throughout District 3, traffic signals contain battery backups, which typically last 3 to 4 hours before becoming non-operational. Additional measures may be implemented at signals during power outages including generators or stop signs. However, motorists should be prepared for all-way stops at non-lighted signals during power outages.

To illustrate the safest way to navigate an intersection during times with no power, Caltrans Public Affairs developed a Caltrans News Flash, which can be viewed here:bit.ly/CT_News_Flash_211.

PG&E customers are also encouraged to sign up for electrical outage alerts and review current outage maps via its website.

Caltrans District 3 maintains more than 4,385 lanes miles of state highway in 11 Sacramento Valley and Northern Sierra counties. The department issues updates about road conditions on Twitter and on Facebook. For real-time traffic information, go to http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov/ or download the free Caltrans QuickMap app from the App Store or Google Play.

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