Essential Disagreement 11/27/13

Disagreement without the Hate

Laura Finley, Ph.D.

Laura Finley

Laura Finley

Disagreement is an essential component of a healthy relationship, a healthy workplace, and a healthy democracy. Much research documents the dangers of surrounding ourselves with so-called “yes men” who always concur. Workplace echo chambers stifle innovation and reify bad policy decisions. Disagreement stimulates creative thinking and prompts innovation.

Yet, there is indeed a peaceful, even collaborative, way to disagree.  And, I contend, that it never involves personal insults, ad hominem attacks, and strings of epithets and curse words.

Unfortunately, it seems as though few in the U.S are taught how to disagree peacefully and constructively. Instead, if we read, hear or see something that bothers us, we tend to get all pissy about it and, rather than present our case, resort to the lowest blows we can. This behavior is, of course, modeled at nearly every turn.

It is difficult to remember any politician in the recent past who has not decided that the way to offer a contrasting view is to rip the crap out of his or her opponent.  As bad (sometimes worse) is media, where television pundits (and I note, both conservative and liberal) seem to love nothing more than to invite guests onto their shows to interrupt them, yell at them, berate them, and otherwise set them up to look foolish. In professional sports, having the best trash-talker on your team is often viewed as an asset. K-12 schools reinforce the normalcy of mean-spirited disagreement when they fail to hold accountable those who denigrate those with whom they disagree. Popular culture encourages the “othering” of the alleged opposition.  For just one example, the t-shirt company David and Goliath offers a shirt that says, “Boys are stupid, throw rocks at them.”

My recent experience authoring op-eds illustrates the issue perfectly. I authored a piece about the bureaucratic stifling of activism. In the op-ed, I encouraged folks who disagree with my positions to share their viewpoints, as dialogue and disagreement can lead to amazingly creative social change from the synthesis of the best parts of different arguments. While I did receive some pleasant feedback, I also received one very disturbing piece of hate email.

Not only did this anonymous emailer attack me personally, using hateful slurs, but s/he also failed to see the point I was making, which was precisely that we should not all agree but should not stifle those who do not see things our way.

I implore those who are reading this to understand what I am saying: I do not have all the answers. I never suggested I did. No one does. And I think it is amazing when people get worked up about an issue or a cause and take that passion to the streets, to the airwaves, to the print media and anywhere else they can find an audience. But please, do so in a peaceful, respectful manner. We really can learn from one another if we discuss and debate, rather than attack.

Laura Finley, Ph.D., teaches in the Barry University Department of Sociology & Criminology and is syndicated by PeaceVoice.


Mountain Messenger (real paper with real ink on it) 11/27/13

11/27/13  In an attempt to regain favor with the community after an embarrassing gaffe, Don Russell, Editor of California’s Oldest Weekly Newspaper, and the favorite newspaper read weekly by star of stage and screen David Letterman, which means if you place an ad in the Mountain Messenger it is possible Letterman will read it, wishes everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving Day and happy festive upcoming holidays to everyone including some, but not all, of the children.

Surprised to be questioned, Russell says, "If you read it, it clearly says woMEN and I am not sure what the issue is..."

11/27/13 Surprised to be questioned, Russell says, “If you read it, it clearly says woMEN and I am not sure what the issue is…”

Send anything you need published to Milly at  Of course you may call directly to 530 289-3262 and talk to Don, (and suggest he give a raise to Minion Milly) or the machine. Keep jobs in Sierra County read the Mess. For a subscription: send in as below or call 530 289-3262 with credit card in hand.. Tell Don, you subscribed because you read about it on Sierra County Prospect…..

mess subcrip

“Hurricane Sierra” Photos 11/27/13

Photos by Carol and David Marshall

This really doesn’t show the damage.  The first picture is at Ramshorn – that tree that fell over is just one of about 100 that we saw.  All over the place.  Then there is a summer housing track where a tree fell on the house and then a few trees on top of that tree.
Then the other one is looking across the river and hundreds of trees down.  It was quite a storm and these photos just don’t do it justice.
We were without power from Thurs noonish to Sunday 4:20 PM – a tree had fallen and was leaning on the power line.  Obviously we were very happy and I was amazed that it was fun to cook at home again! While we were out of power we were thankful that we have wood heat and a generator.  Would not have made it otherwise!!


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Kristy Folsom takes pictures while her mom stays safely in the truck

Kristy Folsom takes pictures while her mom stays safely in the truck

Art Loveland explaining the situation to David Marshall

Art Loveland explaining the situation to David Marshall


Wednesday November 27, 2013

squirrel thanks

11/27/13 The day before Thanksgiving and so much to do. I hope everyone has a wonderful time  with family and friends and if you have no plans and want some good food, friendship and community come to the Miss Jody Community Thanksgiving in Downieville.

There is a lot of holiday activities going on the next few weeks so stay tuned and plan your holiday fun. Nevada City has some fun stuff coming up Nevada City Holidays

The Downieville Lion’s Has their Tags for Kids Christmas Trees up in the post office in Downieville and the Sierra Country Store in Sierra City, be sure to pick up your tag and buy a gift for the child. Girl or boy and age are on each tag. Gifts need to be turned in by December 15. The Lions are also selling their Christmas Trees in front of the Downieville Food Mart and Gas Station.

The Fringe had a little problem with his computer this week and so Part 4 of how to survive life will be next week, we did manage to get Cooter and Gabby before his laptop died.. maybe Gabby has her own computer.  At any rate the Fringe loves to hear comments on his prolific essays and feels left out when no one responds so please feel free to make a comment to express your dismay, disbelief, irateness or enjoyment of any article, but particularly DeVita the Fringe.

Carol’s Books and Movies, Jerusha, The Cats, The Others, Cooter, Gabby are all here so read and enjoy. Our guest columnists David Swanson and Laura Finney are well worth the read. Also the photos from the huge windstorm will be in From the Bench and also the photos from the Tea and Talent Party, as it takes a long time to load in “This Week” and of course if you are looking for a particular column or info click on the right hand menu to get there quicker otherwise you can scroll through this week and when you get to the end and it says older posts click on that and all the new stuff has this week’s date on it…

Make your plans for Holiday on Main in Downieville on December 7th and the Sierra City Community Christmas Potluck on December 14th.
This week’s photo is by Mary Davey of Sierra City a beautiful rainbow.

ARF Extravaganza at Holiday on Main Dec. 7th

The Sierra County Animal Relief Fund (ARF) is holding its “Christmas Extravaganza” Unknownduring Downieville’s “Holiday on Main” on Saturday, December 7.  The Extravaganza will consist of a Pet Parade, raffle, and silent auction — as well as an information booth about the organization.

The Pet Parade will be held in front of Sierra Hardware (or in the firehouse, in case of wet weather).  Registration begins at noon, with the parade happening as soon as all animals are registered.  Awards will be presented for “Best Dressed”, so animals are encouraged to come in costume.  All animals should be property contained, and it is strongly recommended that they have, at least, their first set of vaccinations.
Raffle prizes and silent auction items will be on display at the ARF booth in the Community Hall.  Raffle tickets are $1 for one, $5 for six, or $20 for a person’s height in tickets.  The raffle drawing will take place at 3:00 PM, at the ARF booth.  Bidding on the silent auction takes place throughout the day at the ARF booth, with the auction closing at 3:00 PM.  To date, raffle and auction items include a photo print from Mary Davey (Sierra City resident), and photo print from Tim Guffin (who recently had the cover of Rock and Ice magazine), gift certificates at SPD, Volz Brothers, Plaza Tires, Plumas Veterinary Service, South Pine Cafe, Mondavi Center, Sierra Hot Springs, and El Dorado Casino & Resort, as well as other items.
More items for both the raffle and silent auction are being sought.  Local residents and/or businesses might put together a themed auction basket — or could donate to ARF toward such a basket.  (All donations to ARF are tax deductible, as it is a registered non-profit organization.)  Also, if anyone would be interested in volunteering time for the Christmas Extravaganza — for the Pet Parade or at the booth — their help would be appreciated.
All proceeds from the Christmas Extravaganza benefit the work of the Animal Relief Fund.  Currently, ARF is focusing on spaying and neutering animals, in order to help maintain a sustainable pet population, and as a way to cut down on the amount of requests for food that come to the organization.  ARF’s goal is to help provide the basics of life to the animal members of Sierra County families by providing healthcare and emergency food when needed.
To donate prizes for the raffle or auction, or money toward such prizes, or to make a donation to ARF, please contact ARF CEO, Rachel Guffin, at 289-2720.

Full House at Tea & Talent 11/27/13

Even through the blustery wind storm, the DHS Drama Class had a full house for their Tea and Talent presentation. Lynn Fillo and her class put on, an outstanding evening of talent, through monologues, to help support the DHS Athletic Club. While the students performed, amazing desserts were enjoyed by everyone that attended. Thanks to everyone who helped support our schools, and to Lynn Fillo for all her hard work year after year.

Pictured below in random order Karlee Bolle, Sean Epps, Savannah Burr, Fiona Baker, Alexis Whitaker, Ali Rambo, Jarrett Lawes, Kaylon Hall

Photos by local photographer and scone baker Darcy White





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Calpine Christmas Dinner December 14

SAT Dec 14 – Dinner starts at 5:00pm and
Santa arrives at 6:00pm with a gift for children
12 years old or under…
Turkey, dressing, potatoes, gravy, rolls and coffee 
provided.  Please complete our dinner and bring your
favorite vegetable or dessert…
The Calpine Improvement Association Annual
Christmas party reservation form is available at the
Calpine Post Office. (completed reservation form
is necessary for the count and for childrens names
and ages)
For information, call Ginny: 530-994-3610

Judge Kennelly Honored by CPOC

John P. Kennelly, Sierra County Superior Court Judge, has been named Judicial Officer of the Year by the Chief Probation Officers of California (CPOC). The Judicial Officer of the Year Award is a single award granted to a judicial officer who has made a significant contribution and/or has provided exemplary leadership to the field of corrections.

The CPOC is a statewide organization consisting of all of the Chief Probation Officers of the 58 counties in California. the mission of CPOC is to provide leadership in the mobilization, coordination, and implementation of Probation programs and prevention of crime and delinquency; and to insure the provision of quality investigations and supervision of offenders for the Courts.

Judge Kennelly will receive his award at the CPOC Annual Awards Luncheon on December 12th in San Diego.

Truckee Sports Exchange 11/27/13

New post on

New Owner At The Truckee Sports Exchange

by Mark


From Facebook today...Rob Cavallo is the new owner of the Truckee Sports Exchange.

From Facebook today…Rob Cavallo is the new owner of the Truckee Sports Exchange.

We’ve been hanging around at the Truckee Sports Exchange for a long time. They’ve been supporting this site since the beginning, even before we There’s always been a need for a shop that caters to the needs of locals, where you can get personalized help from people that also share the chairlift with you. The Truckee Sports Exchange announced today that Rob Cavallo, formerly the manager of the store, is now the new owner of the store.

Thanks to Brent & Tina Cutler, former owners, for all of those years of supporting the Alpine Meadows Freestyle team, kids from other ski teams, people with a passion for backcountry and those of us that just have a passion for skiing on a “dirtbag” budget. We appreciate how you have let Rob, Danny, Jaques and the rest of the crew make the store our first stop for ski gear, climbing gear and paddling gear.

We look forward to continue supporting Rob and the gang at the Truckee Sports Exchange. There will always be some equipment that needs to be sold, some skis that need a mount and tune,  a last minute camping need or just a long session checking out all of the new selections on the ever increasing ski wall. Congrats Rob! We hope the snow cooperates to make this an amazing season for you.

Board of Supes – Special Meeting Nov 26, 2013

Lee Adams, District
530-289-3506 –
Peter W. Huebner, District 2
 530-862-1004 –
Paul Roen, Vice-Chair, District 3
209-479-2770 –
Jim Beard, District 4
530-993-4732 –
Scott A. Schlefstein, Chair, District 5
530-993-4900 –
The Sierra County Board of Supervisors met in special session  at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, November 26, 2013 in the Loyalton Social Hall,  Loyalton, CA.The Board of Supervisors may hold a Closed Session as the agenda schedule permits.REGULAR AGENDA

  • Call to Order
  • Roll Call
  • Approval of Agenda

Review of County Agreement No. 2008-041 dated April 1, 2008 entitled “Planning Services Cooperative Agreement” between the County of Sierra and the City of Loyalton for planning, zoning, land use, and building inspection professional services by the County to the City of Loyalton and direction with regards to action to continue, amend or terminate existing agreement. (VICE-CHAIR ROEN) The Board approved a Motion of Intent made by Supervisor Adams to void the Contract between the County and the City. If the City agrees to terminate the contract on a certain date the County will complete those projects it has permitted, if there is no agreement the County will void the agreement immediately. see Messenger article here Mountain Messenger article on Loyalton
See Mountain Messenger article by Don Russell here: Supes to Kill Loy Contract

Loyalton Craves Independence 11/27/13

by the courtesy and scribe skills of  Editor Don Russell                                The Mountain Messenger

Supes to Kill Loy Contract

Loyalton-At a special meeting held Tuesday, Novermber 26, Sierra County’s board of supervisors agreed to quit supplying the City of Loyalton with Planning and Building services.

City Councilman Craig McHenry presented the dupes with a letter accusing the County of having violated the contract some time ago by refusing to aid the City with park and sewer system assistance.

County Planning and Building Director Tim Beals replied forcefully, noting that both those projects are outside the scope of the City/County contract.

At least both sides agree the contract has been violated, and there appears to be no inclination by either side to fight for the status quo.

The City has begun issuing building permits, which the County sees as a violation of the contract.

In a motion of intent offered by Supervisor Lee Adams, at their next meeting the dupes will be in receipt of a mutual agreement with the City to void the existing contract on a date certain, or will unilaterally void the contract. Should the city agree to terminate the agreement on a date certain, the County will complete those projects it has permitted. Failing the receipt of such an agreement, the County will unilaterally void that agreement immediately.

Gabby Fringette 11/27/13


By G-G-G-Gabby Fr-fr-fr-fringette

You may be wondering why my resolve to write intelligent gabbies went south. Well, it’s warmer in the south, that’s why.  Also, I will not be able to write a research gabby because of an incident involving a heater and some solder.  I can’t divulge any details, because then you’ll find out that that it’s actually a lot less interesting than it sounds.

Winter is nearly here, you can tell because big stores are putting up Valentine’s Day stuff behind all the Christmas displays.

But, despite Wal-Mart’s “décor”, it is neither February nor December, but November.

My least favorite part about winter is the cold.  Having to open up the fridge to get warm, and doing pushups to circulate blood and feel your lower legs.

If I want to feel my toes through out winter, I’m gonna look like a body builder by spring.

I don’t mind the constant isolation caused by the weather, or the ever-looming threat of going crazy.  I solved the loneliness and craziness threat when we started talking to ourself.

Another problem with winter is the Christmas jingles. Every station you turn to is playing earfuls of tacky fun.  All the stations except the hit station.  The exposure to modern culture is not so bad when you can run around and flush it out of your system afterwards.  But without exercise, it stays in my system and causes me to get really dysclezic. Dislexik. Dyslekix.  Dyslexic! I got it!

Winter is to say the least, nippy. It’s called nippy because when you first go out, it feels like the cold is trying to nip off your face and any other exposed skin.

One of the best ways to stay warm in the winter is firewood.  Even if you don’t have a wood stove, lug a little firewood around.  It’ll get your blood flowing, and if you are fortunate enough to have a wood stove, the firewood will help it keep going.  Fire wood warms twice.  Once when you carry it, the second time when you pile it on the stove with a little corn oil or gas to get the fire goin’ nice and big.

Another good way is with food, because being cold burns calories.  If you ever want to eat a ton of food, and not get fat, do it in winter.  Of course, you have to wear less jacket, other wise you will get fat, and you’ll need more jacket.

To stay warm is something you need to know how to do, if you are to survive anywhere that doesn’t have malaria outbreaks.

Stay warm!

SNC Annual Report 11/27/13

Fire, Water, Healthy Forests, and Communities

Sierra Nevada Conservancy Issues Annual Report 

(Auburn) – The Sierra Nevada Conservancy today released its annual report for the recently concluded state fiscal year, providing an overview of what is needed to restore the Sierra to ecological health, and supply abundant clean water to some 23 million Californians.

“We hope the report will provide an understanding of just how important the Sierra Nevada is to the rest of California, while highlighting projects and activities that demonstrate and support the need for investment in upper watersheds,” said SNC Executive Officer Jim Branham.  “This Annual Report and the recently released Proposition 84 Report — ‘Investing in California’s Watershed’ — will complement one another and provide examples of current on-the-ground success stories, as well as work that lies ahead.”

Highlights of the report include the following:

  • Forest biomass-to-energy efforts, which assist in forest restoration, provide alternative energy and create jobs
  • The Sierra Nevada Forest and Community Initiative, a collaborative approach to solving disagreements over forest management and environmental protection
  • The impact from legacy Gold Rush era abandoned mines on California’s watersheds
  • A special case study underway on the Mokelumne River watershed that calculates and quantifies the cost of watershed restoration, (fuels thinning and forest health work) compared to the cost associated with the effects of large fires
  • An outline of the SNC’s $50 million Prop. 84 grant program for nearly 300 projects in the Sierra

“More than 60 percent of California’s developed water supply begins as snow and rain in the Sierra,” said Branham.  Our forests help clean our air, provide recreation and wildlife habitat and produce wood products important to our state’s economy.  Investing in the Sierra Nevada Region makes sense for all Californians, not just those of us living and working here.”

About the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, Governing Board

Created in 2004, the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) is a state agency whose mission is to improve the environmental, economic, and social well-being of the Sierra Nevada Region. The SNC, which receives no general fund tax dollars, has awarded over  $52.1 million in grants for projects toprotect and enhance the health of California’s watersheds by improving forest health, remediating mercury contamination from abandoned mines, protecting critical natural resources and reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire.  Funding for these projects comes from Proposition 84 passed by voters in 2006.

Six of the 13 SNC Governing Boardmembers are self-appointed, locally-elected county supervisors.  The Board meets quarterly around the Sierra Nevada Region, which spans 25 million acres, encompasses all or part of 22 counties, and runs from the Oregon border on the north, to Kern County.


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